First Impressions: Solarian


General Discussion

101 to 148 of 148 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>
Scarab Sages

Imbicatus wrote:
It also means that maneuvers are best made as a standard action instead as part of a full attack, because the -4 becomes in practice a -12.

Actually, rereading the tactical rules chapter, maneuvers are standard actions now, not attack actions. You can't make one as part of a full attack.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
JetSetRadio wrote:
Iceman1077 wrote:
The Solarion needs an option to focus on either Graviton or Photon, instead of having to balance the 2
No Offense, but you are missing what the Solarian is about. Focusing on one limits the class so much. Deciding to choke a mage in battle to stop him/her from casting a spell or deciding to set the soldier on fire is the whole point. Options instead of being limited but one.

Which is why it shouldn't be so penalizing. You're already gimping yourself if you focus on one. Having your attunement get rammed is just insult to injury.


IonutRO wrote:
JetSetRadio wrote:
Iceman1077 wrote:
The Solarion needs an option to focus on either Graviton or Photon, instead of having to balance the 2
No Offense, but you are missing what the Solarian is about. Focusing on one limits the class so much. Deciding to choke a mage in battle to stop him/her from casting a spell or deciding to set the soldier on fire is the whole point. Options instead of being limited but one.
Which is why it shouldn't be so penalizing. You're already gimping yourself if you focus on one. Having your attunement get rammed is just insult to injury.

I see it as a story hook. Maybe there will be a prestige class in the future that has you be unbalanced. I don't find a problem with choosing what to use in combat. I think if you are tuning into Graviton you shouldn't be able to use Photon at all during combat. It's a balance system. My main concern is the lack of choose as you progress. You ONLY get to choose 10 Revelations powers over 20 levels. There are 23 powers total so that is basically 5 per side. You are leaving a lot of the table and limiting the class in my opinion.


Just to point out its 6 per side (for a total of 12 at 20th) as you start off with 1 of each.


Rysky the Dark Solarion wrote:
Just to point out its 6 per side (for a total of 12 at 20th) as you start off with 1 of each.

I considered those are zenith revelations since you can only use them when fully attuned.


JetSetRadio wrote:
Rysky the Dark Solarion wrote:
Just to point out its 6 per side (for a total of 12 at 20th) as you start off with 1 of each.
I considered those are zenith revelations since you can only use them when fully attuned.

Oh I missed that, they do indeed call out being considered Zenith Revelations.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
JetSetRadio wrote:
I think if you are tuning into Graviton you shouldn't be able to use Photon at all during combat. It's a balance system.

The abilities, and the benefit from being attuned, aren't even remotely good enough for locking you out of (what's presumably intended to be) half of them to be 'balanced'.

As it is you've got some not-very-damaging abilities one side, and some too-high-opportunity-cost, extremely-situational gimmicks the other.

The flavour is great, but the class mechanics are lackluster and clunky enough without trying to suggest ways to make it even worse.


JetSetRadio wrote:
Does anyone else think that when you get stellar revelations you should be able to choose 2 at a time instead of 1? There are 23 total and you only get to choose 10 total. Basically 5 per side. You are leaving a lot of the table basically.

It's especially painful when you consider that in Pathfinder even the poor, underwhelming kineticist gets 10 utility talents and 8 infusions (attack talents).

Seguun wrote:
Sounds like the Flavor of this class ie build a Jedi is fine but the overall power is a bit lacking. Guess I will go with the operative.

Personally, I think that the class that has the best potential to be a Jedi is actually the Envoy, at the moment. We just need somebody to write up a bunch of (Su) talent options for it that work like 3.5 warlock invocations.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

After looking at it more carefully, I think the Stellar Rush revelation is better than I was initially thinking it was.

My initial reaction was: "So you can charge without penalties. Not bad for an opener. But since it'll usually be the start of combat, you won't be attuned to anything, so you won't get the bonus bull rush/damage. And it's something you'll use at most 1/combat. OKish, I guess."

But then I realized that it allows you to charge as a standard action instead of a full action. So it allows you to also fit in another swift action and move action, while moving up to twice your speed toward an enemy, and attack without penalties (possibly with a bonus rider if you're attuned). Not bad!


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

My first impression?

They're f%@$ing awesome! I think I'll make at least ten of them.

At least.


5 people marked this as a favorite.

I would like to identify a few problems with the solarian.

• Solarian Problem #1: The solarian is a Strength-based melee class, with mandatory class features that key off melee attacks. Despite this, it starts with only light armor proficiency, and its solar armor can be used only in light armor (whether or not it works in powered armor is ambiguous). Therefore, right from the start, solar armor is a useless class feature, and a solarian is behooved to blow their 1st-level feat on Heavy Armor Proficiency.

465 credit hidden soldier armor might impose -5 speed, but it grants 2 more EAC and KAC than 460 credit kasatha microcord I.
2,970 credit lashunta ringwear II has 3 more EAC and 4 more KAC than a 2,980 credit D-suit I.
The difference only increases from there.

Solar armor can be vindicated by allowing it to work with powered armor, but that is currently a grey area in the rules.

• Solarian Problem #2: The solar weapon is all but useless from 1st to 5th level. It is much better for a solarian to pick up a tactical pike and avail of 1d8 damage and reach that can still target adjacent creatures. 1d6 damage is pathetic.

The solar weapon finally vindicates itself at 6th level as it finally attains 2d6 damage, which goes up to 2d6+1d4 (critical bleed 1d6) with a 3,050-credit least W-boson crystal. Hooray!

Unfortunately, by 9th level, the solar weapon reaches 3d6 damage, which rises to 5d6 (critical bleed 2d6) with a 26,200-credit lesser W-boson crystal. Meanwhile, an 18,100-credit ultrathin curve blade deals 3d10 damage (critical bleed 2d6), only 1 less on average, and is significantly more economical.

In other words, the solar weapon is totally useless at 1st to 5th level, fairly useful from 6th to 8th level, and back in the dumpster from 9th to 11th level. It flip-flops back and forth between "useless" and "good" depending on the level and the affordable weapons then. This is not a good sign for a class feature.

• Solarian Problem #3: The solarian is a Strength-based melee class, yet its key ability modifier is Charisma. This means that a human, half-elf, or half-orc solarian is going to start with Strength 18 and Charisma 14, thereby screwing a solarian out of Resolve Points compared to a soldier. This also means that a solarian has no room for Dexterity, which would have improved their durability as a frontliner. In contrast, a human, half-elf, or half-orc melee soldier can easily have Strength 18 and Dexterity 14, giving them more Resolve Points, initiative, AC, Reflex, and ranged attack bonus. Skill bonuses are nice, but a frontliner has to actually survive over the course of the day.

• Solarian Problem #4: Both of the mandatory 1st-level revelations are not that good. They are very positioning-dependent, and a solarian can use them only during their third turn and onwards. By that time, there is absolutely no guarantee that the solarian will be in a good position to use Black Hole or Supernova. They require saving throws from a Charisma secondary class, and Black Hole is a dangerous proposition for a frontliner with middling EAC and KAC.

• Solarian Problem #5: There is a "one true build" for solarians from 2nd to 7th level, and that involves taking Stellar Rush at 2nd, Plasma Sheath at 4th, and Corona at 6th, always staying photon mode (extra damage beats a bonus to Reflex, obviously), and then completely ignoring Black Hole and Supernova. This results in raw melee mobility, damage, and counterdamage. Absolutely no other solarian build can compete with this. There is no reason to bother with any other photon revelations from 2nd to 7th level, let alone any graviton revelations from 2nd to 7th level. Yes, that means sucking up the fact that attunement now takes 4 points. It does not inspire much confidence in the class's design when it is clear that this one build outshines every other.

• Solarian Problem #6: Well, #5 is not necessarily true. Depending on how Blazing Orbit works, if the fire damage applies with each square a creature is forced into, it could very well be the solarian's greatest source of damage by 6th level. This could stand to be patched.

Is this assessment accurate?


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

No.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
captain yesterday wrote:
No.

Why not?

Sovereign Court

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Companion, Lost Omens, Pathfinder Accessories, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

A solar armor Solarion is not a Str melee class for starters. It doesn't get better from there.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

It's too critical and dismissive towards options other people might like.

It is your assessment, and you're certainly welcome to it, but I don't agree with it.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
KingOfAnything wrote:
A solar armor Solarion is not a Str melee class for starters. It doesn't get better from there.

Explain the melee-only (e.g. Flashing Strikes) and close-range-only (e.g. Black Hole, Supernova) class features that the solarian is locked into, then.

The solarian does not even start with longarm proficiency, but it does start with advanced melee weapon proficiency. Longarms would require two feats to put up to par with advanced melee weapons, Longarm Proficiency and Weapon Specialization (longarms).


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Colette Brunel wrote:

I would like to identify a few problems with the solarian.

• Solarian Problem #1: The solarian is a Strength-based melee class, with mandatory class features that key off melee attacks. Despite this, it starts with only light armor proficiency, and its solar armor can be used only in light armor (whether or not it works in powered armor is ambiguous). Therefore, right from the start, solar armor is a useless class feature, and a solarian is behooved to blow their 1st-level feat on Heavy Armor Proficiency.

465 credit hidden soldier armor might impose -5 speed, but it grants 2 more EAC and KAC than 460 credit kasatha microcord I.
2,970 credit lashunta ringwear II has 3 more EAC and 4 more KAC than a 2,980 credit D-suit I.
The difference only increases from there.

I think there's one major problem with your assessment here, I think if one was to choose the solar armor over the solar weapon, the assumption is you're going to be primarily using ranged weapons and be dex based with occasional forays into melee with an operative weapon, which means light armor is good for you! At the last level, with a Hardlight series specialist and max dex you have a better EAC and the same KAC as a Vesk Monolith III with the same conditions. There's similar conditions with the first level armors. A solar weapon specialized solarion would probably need heave armor.

Colette Brunel wrote:

• Solarian Problem #2: The solar weapon is all but useless from 1st to 5th level. It is much better for a solarian to pick up a tactical pike and avail of 1d8 damage and reach that can still target adjacent creatures. 1d6 damage is pathetic.

The solar weapon finally vindicates itself at 6th level as it finally attains 2d6 damage, which goes up to 2d6+1d4 (critical bleed 1d6) with a 3,050-credit least W-boson crystal. Hooray!

Unfortunately, by 9th level, the solar weapon reaches 3d6 damage, which rises to 5d6 (critical bleed 2d6) with a 26,200-credit lesser W-boson crystal. Meanwhile, an 18,100-credit ultrathin curve blade deals 3d10 damage (critical bleed 2d6), only 1 less on average, and is significantly more economical.

In other words, the solar weapon is totally useless at 1st to 5th level, fairly useful from 6th to 8th level, and back in the dumpster from 9th to 11th level. It flip-flops back and forth between "useless" and "good" depending on the level and the affordable weapons then. This is not a good sign for a class feature.

Not much to say here, it does look like the crystal prices/strengths might need some balancing. But it is noting there are few weapons that are much better than the solar weapon at the first few levels and all but one are two handed. So I wouldn't say it's useless, but that it's not optimal.

Colette Brunel wrote:
• Solarian Problem #3: The solarian is a Strength-based melee class, yet its key ability modifier is Charisma. This means that a human, half-elf, or half-orc solarian is going to start with Strength 18 and Charisma 14, thereby screwing a solarian out of Resolve Points compared to a soldier. This also means that a solarian has no room for Dexterity, which would have improved their durability as a frontliner. In contrast, a human, half-elf, or half-orc melee soldier can easily have Strength 18 and Dexterity 14, giving them more Resolve Points, initiative, AC, Reflex, and ranged attack bonus. Skill bonuses are nice, but a frontliner has to actually survive over the course of the day.

I agree the charisma base is annoying (especially as it comes from a society with a wisdom bonus and seems focused on meditation, which historically was a more wisdom based thing but that's another issue....), but I have a feeling having an 18 in your attacking stat isn't mandatory. And the solder is intended to be the pure attacking class, they have very little battle field control. The solarion has options that can control or move people as needed and probably shouldn't be solely focused on damage; you're always going to lose. And finally given that a half-orc and Half-elf are going to be less common, choose a race/theme with bonuses to scores you need. You can make a good Korasha Lashunta with a mercenary, icon, or xenoseeker theme and have a 16 strength, 16 cha and 13 dex no problem. Or be a human and enjoy having your extra feat.

Colette Brunel wrote:
• Solarian Problem #4: Both of the mandatory 1st-level revelations are not that good. They are very positioning-dependent, and a solarian can use them only during their third turn and onwards. By that time, there is absolutely no guarantee that the solarian will be in a good position to use Black Hole or Supernova. They require saving throws from a Charisma secondary class, and Black Hole is a dangerous proposition for a frontliner with middling EAC and KAC.

You can have a comparative EAC and KAC to a soilder easily. This is no problem. And if you aren't in the right spot to use these after 3 turns, you probably would never have been, or aren't planning ahead properly!

Colette Brunel wrote:
• Solarian Problem #5: There is a "one true build" for solarians from 2nd to 7th level, and that involves taking Stellar Rush at 2nd, Plasma Sheath at 4th, and Corona at 6th, always staying photon mode (extra damage beats a bonus to Reflex, obviously), and then completely ignoring Black Hole and Supernova. This results in raw melee mobility, damage, and counterdamage. Absolutely no other solarian build can compete with this. There is no reason to bother with any other photon revelations from 2nd to 7th level, let alone any graviton revelations from 2nd to 7th level. Yes, that means sucking up the fact that attunement now takes 4 points. It does not inspire much confidence in the class's design when it is clear that this one build outshines every other.

Again way too damage focused. Stellar rush's extra damage only comes from taking the bull rush, plasma sheath is only a bit of extra damage. Corona looks nice though. But this isn't the only (and no way in hell the 'one true build' one could pick up Gravity Hold and another revelation of choice at 2 and 4 and then pick up blazing orbit and gravity hold enemies into your orbit, and you can do this every Round. There are likely other possibilities too.

Colette Brunel wrote:

• Solarian Problem #6: Well, #5 is not necessarily true. Depending on how Blazing Orbit works, if the fire damage applies with each square a creature is forced into, it could very well be the solarian's greatest source of damage by 6th level. This could stand to be patched.

Is this assessment accurate?

Again damage isn't everything. And what needs to be patched?

I think in conclusion, you have the assumption that the solarion is supposed to be focuses on being an ultimate, optimal damage dealing class like the solider, whereas I'd argue there intended to be a tactical, battlefield controlling class with some damaging options. I think it accomplishes this somewhat readily. As a final note, I don't think a melee battlefield controller was something we saw in Pathfinder, and I'm really excited to see one here! Thanks whoever wrote this class, I like it!

Sovereign Court

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Companion, Lost Omens, Pathfinder Accessories, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Colette Brunel wrote:
KingOfAnything wrote:
A solar armor Solarion is not a Str melee class for starters. It doesn't get better from there.
Explain the melee-only (e.g. Flashing Strikes) and close-range-only (e.g. Black Hole, Supernova) class features that the solarian is locked into.

You realize that there are Dex melee weapons, right? Switch hit with a small arms weapon and focus on control.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Colette Brunel wrote:
I would like to identify a few problems with the solarian.

An interesting commentary. A couple thoughts:

Colette Brunel wrote:
Solarian Problem #3: The solarian is a Strength-based melee class, yet its key ability modifier is Charisma. This means that a human, half-elf, or half-orc solarian is going to start with Strength 18 and Charisma 14, thereby screwing a solarian out of Resolve Points compared to a soldier. This also means that a solarian has no room for Dexterity, which would have improved their durability as a frontliner. In contrast, a human, half-elf, or half-orc melee soldier can easily have Strength 18 and Dexterity 14, giving them more Resolve Points, initiative, AC, Reflex, and ranged attack bonus. Skill bonuses are nice, but a frontliner has to actually survive over the course of the day.

Yeah, I agree that the Solarian is a bit MAD, and begs for a wider spread of ability scores than the Soldier.

This issue is exacerbated starting out because the new (simpler) point-buy system doesn't have diminishing returns, like the Pathfinder point-buy. So the point-buy system is less friendly to MAD classes.

On the flip side, the new attribute-advancement system benefits MAD classes a great deal. So when you get to level 5, and then level 10, the Solarian benefits more from these bumps than (say) the Soldier.

So a bit of a mixed bag there.

Colette Brunel wrote:
Solarian Problem #4: Both of the mandatory 1st-level revelations are not that good. They are very positioning-dependent, and a solarian can use them only during their third turn and onwards. By that time, there is absolutely no guarantee that the solarian will be in a good position to use Black Hole or Supernova. They require saving throws from a Charisma secondary class, and Black Hole is a dangerous proposition for a frontliner with middling EAC and KAC.

I'll admit that I'm not sure the Black Hole revelation will see much use (though I'd have to see more actual play to be confident about this). But upon reflection I think the Supernova ability is decent.

To get a feel for why, compare it to the Miniature Star revelation you can take at level 9. With the right build, I think the Miniature Star revelation is pretty sweet. And the Supernova ability does double the damage (though it doesn't last as long, and doesn't have the cool gravitational attraction effects).

Colette Brunel wrote:
Solarian Problem #5: There is a "one true build" for solarians from 2nd to 7th level, and that involves taking Stellar Rush at 2nd, Plasma Sheath at 4th, and Corona at 6th, always staying photon mode (extra damage beats a bonus to Reflex, obviously), and then completely ignoring Black Hole and Supernova. This results in raw melee mobility, damage, and counterdamage. Absolutely no other solarian build can compete with this. There is no reason to bother with any other photon revelations from 2nd to 7th level, let alone any graviton revelations from 2nd to 7th level. Yes, that means sucking up the fact that attunement now takes 4 points. It does not inspire much confidence in the class's design when it is clear that this one build outshines every other.

This was the one point I definitely disagree with.

For one, even if you're focusing on a photon-focused front-line melee-bruiser build (as you are), I think the Radiation revelation is arguably the best low-level pick, and arguably better than Corona. Given how stingy Starfinder is with AC boosts, Sickening your opponent is effectively a +2 bonus to your AC (as well as a general debuff of the creature you're engaging). That's twice the bonus your solar armor will be giving you during the early game.

For another, if you want to maximize DPR, you should definitely go for a Soldier. The draw of the Solarian is access to thinks like crowd control abilities, more skill options/boosts, and more out-of-combat utility. So if you're building for that, then other abilities (like Hypnotic Glow, Gravity Hold, Defy Gravity, Gravity Surge) will be attractive (and reasonable) picks. (I'm actually not in love with the two mobility-enhancing revelations after level 5, for the reasons I gave in my original post, but whatever.)

Anyway, long story short, I definitely don't think the build you described outshines any other build.


Do note that the Radiation revelation is low level radiation. All creatures that wear armor of any kind are immune to it.


Aratrok wrote:
Do note that the Radiation revelation is low level radiation. All creatures that wear armor of any kind are immune to it.

Oof, that one really hurts it. So it's only really of use against non-armour-wearing creatures/nudists.


Quote:
You realize that there are Dex melee weapons, right?

There are? Do they get dex to damage, or just to hit?

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

The one true build is good because it focuses on the Solarions strengths, it's there to get into melee relatively efficiently and start doing damage. It's also straightforward which is good, because straightforward allows for emergent tactics.

So if there is a charge lane you can Plasma Blade and Stellar Rush
If there isn't you move to position and Corona.

So it's the heart of a good Solarion build, it gets to melee and starts getting work done. What about Graviton stuff? Well the issue is they offer mediocre movement advantages or dodgy debuffs. If I throw out a graviton move at range and it fails, I've definitely wasted my turn and I havn't even positioned myself for a full attack next turn. It's not that those Solar abilities are too strong, its that there isn't enough mechanical weight to make the Graviton stuff attractive.
Grabbing DR or cover is all well and good, but there are easier sources of both in the game and with so many buffs as move actions, it's very expensive to get there.

I'm a bit disappointed because I thought the flavour behind this class is marvellous but the mechanics are fractious.


HidaOWin wrote:
I'm a bit disappointed because I thought the flavour behind this class is marvellous but the mechanics are fractious.

I feel they could have been great if they'd looked more to D&D 4e Defenders. 4e Wardens worked a lot like how Gravity Solarians feel like they should. If you get stuck in melee with them, you are STAYING. They can yank people into melee, turn the area around themselves into difficult terrain and no-save reduce the movement speed of people that start in melee with them.

The Gravity moves lack that second part, the ability to actually keep someone with you once they are in melee.

Lantern Lodge

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

There are no fooling dozens of ways to implement Gravity for the Solarion. Opponents unable to 5 foot step away. The wall/floor is now down. Weapons become stuck to the Solarion when attacking them, you can use gravity to bind two weapons together so that you then use your solar mote to fight with. Alter gravity to make projectile weapons more accurate.

I'll take a standard action to try and stop someone moving isn't really up to snuff.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Aratrok wrote:
Do note that the Radiation revelation is low level radiation. All creatures that wear armor of any kind are immune to it.

This was brought up in another thread, too. The rules regarding radiation, and the labels of low, medium, high and severe radiation levels in the environmental rules section don't seem to line up with the description of the Solarian's Radiation ability. E.g., the effects are totally different: the "level" of radiation in the environmental rules section is tied to DC, but has nothing to do with the DC of the Solarian's Radiation ability; the effects of radiation in the environmental rules section is to give you the radiation sickness disease, but none of the tracks of that disease correspond to the effect of the Solarian's Radiation ability (all and only: Sickened), and so on.

It was suggested in the other thread that this was probably intended to be treated as a kind of magical effect that worked separately from the radiation effects in the environmental rules section, and I'm pretty sure that's what they had in mind. Probably worth a FAQ though.


HidaOWin wrote:

There are no fooling dozens of ways to implement Gravity for the Solarion. Opponents unable to 5 foot step away. The wall/floor is now down. Weapons become stuck to the Solarion when attacking them, you can use gravity to bind two weapons together so that you then use your solar mote to fight with. Alter gravity to make projectile weapons more accurate.

I'll take a standard action to try and stop someone moving isn't really up to snuff.

A fun thing could have been focusing on movement in both ways. So you can yank a ranged guy into melee and lock him there...or you can slam a melee guy 80ft away to get him off your team.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Sedoriku wrote:


I think there's one major problem with your assessment here, I think if one was to choose the solar armor over the solar weapon, the assumption is you're going to be primarily using ranged weapons and be dex based with occasional forays into melee with an operative weapon, which means light armor is good for you! At the last level, with a Hardlight series specialist and max dex you have a better EAC and the same KAC as a Vesk Monolith III with the same conditions. There's similar conditions with the first level armors. A solar weapon specialized solarion would probably need heave armor.

The solarian is definitely locked into a Strength-based melee build; ranged solarians have a mostly dead 7th-level feature, and since operative weapons still use Strength for the damage roll, an operative weapon will pale in comparison to an advanced melee weapon.

A solarian will have a comparable AC to a soldier only if the solarian dumps Charisma.

More Strength for actually hitting and dealing damage always helps for a melee character. The ability score increases every 5 levels benefit a solarian slightly more, but the personal upgrades (e.g. a Strength personal upgrade) certainly benefit a soldier more, particularly given Strength-based Resolve Points.

Stellar Rush is not for bull rushing. You ignore that part. Stellar Rush is for charging as a standard action without penalties.


No they aren't locked into Melee.

Flashing Strikes is nice but it does not prevent them from focusing on ranged weapons.

And Stellar Rush is for charging and bull rushing. You don't ignore that part.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Colette Brunel wrote:

The solarian is definitely locked into a Strength-based melee build; ranged solarians have a mostly dead 7th-level feature, and since operative weapons still use Strength for the damage roll, an operative weapon will pale in comparison to an advanced melee weapon.

A solarian will have a comparable AC to a soldier only if the solarian dumps Charisma.

More Strength for actually hitting and dealing damage always helps for a melee character. The ability score increases every 5 levels benefit a solarian slightly more, but the personal upgrades (e.g. a Strength personal upgrade) certainly benefit a soldier more, particularly given Strength-based Resolve Points.

Stellar Rush is not for bull rushing. You ignore that part. Stellar Rush is for charging as a standard action without penalties.

Assuming you start with a +2 mod from dex, pick up heavy armor, and consistently choose it for level up status increases, you won't fall behind a solider unless the soldier took the guard fighting style. Or you could start with a +1 mod and only be one point away. They don't have middling AC with heavy armor.

This is the same with having an 18 vs. 16 in Strength, you will only be losing a point, and again your goal is not to deal the most damage, it's to help position and control the battle field. Finally if you're ignoring the bull rush part or stellar rush, you don't have to be in stellar mode, you can do it in graviton mode.
And finally as Rsyky said before me you're not locked into a melee build.

Please quit trying to lock the class into a pigeon hole, because it's the most optimal, and the comparing it to the soldier on the basis of damage alone and then calling it broken. If you want the best damage play a soldier, if you want good damage with battlefield control play a solarion.


Sedoriku wrote:

Please quit trying to lock the class into a pigeon hole, because it's the most optimal, and the comparing it to the soldier on the basis of damage alone and then calling it broken. If you want the best damage play a soldier, if you want good damage with battlefield control play a solarion.

I think part of it is that people are disputing that it's very good at the battlefield control part.


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Ikiry0 wrote:
Sedoriku wrote:

Please quit trying to lock the class into a pigeon hole, because it's the most optimal, and the comparing it to the soldier on the basis of damage alone and then calling it broken. If you want the best damage play a soldier, if you want good damage with battlefield control play a solarion.

I think part of it is that people are disputing that it's very good at the battlefield control part.

While I agree that it's not brilliant at battlefield control at the moment, I think it has a lot of potential to gain some pretty gnarly powers in future. The same thing happened in Pathfinder where the emergence of certain abilities took a class from okay to a must play for any optimizer. I think we should certainly critique areas where it's weak but I don't think it's in need of much more than some slightly buffed powers. The fundamental class features aren't as bad as some people make them out to be, a Solarian isn't going to be the main damage dealer like a Soldier but it isn't going to be massively outclassed either.


On the other hand though: People can't really make judgements base on future potential so much as current capabilities.


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Yeah I don't think we should let the issues go because they'll be replaced, I'm just saying that maybe dismissing classes as useless or trying to hotfix them this early is a bit hasty when we don't know what's on the horizon. There could be an ability in Alien Archive that every Solarian must have, but we have no way of telling that until that book is actually released.


Yeah, I've tried to focus more on 'I don't think X ability is great'. Like my major bugbear, Black Hole. Moving people a shorter distance than you can walk, on a failed save, as a standard action, with no ability to actually keep them there is not a good combination of limitations. If it was not a standard or dragged them a long way or locked them down once dragged...any of those could have really helped shore it up.


Sedoriku wrote:
Colette Brunel wrote:

The solarian is definitely locked into a Strength-based melee build; ranged solarians have a mostly dead 7th-level feature, and since operative weapons still use Strength for the damage roll, an operative weapon will pale in comparison to an advanced melee weapon.

A solarian will have a comparable AC to a soldier only if the solarian dumps Charisma.

More Strength for actually hitting and dealing damage always helps for a melee character. The ability score increases every 5 levels benefit a solarian slightly more, but the personal upgrades (e.g. a Strength personal upgrade) certainly benefit a soldier more, particularly given Strength-based Resolve Points.

Stellar Rush is not for bull rushing. You ignore that part. Stellar Rush is for charging as a standard action without penalties.

Assuming you start with a +2 mod from dex, pick up heavy armor, and consistently choose it for level up status increases, you won't fall behind a solider unless the soldier took the guard fighting style. Or you could start with a +1 mod and only be one point away. They don't have middling AC with heavy armor.

This is the same with having an 18 vs. 16 in Strength, you will only be losing a point, and again your goal is not to deal the most damage, it's to help position and control the battle field. Finally if you're ignoring the bull rush part or stellar rush, you don't have to be in stellar mode, you can do it in graviton mode.
And finally as Rsyky said before me you're not locked into a melee build.

Please quit trying to lock the class into a pigeon hole, because it's the most optimal, and the comparing it to the soldier on the basis of damage alone and then calling it broken. If you want the best damage play a soldier, if you want good damage with battlefield control play a solarion.

Nah, no point in heavy armor: power armor only works when not wearing heavy (light)- works for both sword and armor solarions.

Liberty's Edge

Colette Brunel wrote:

I would like to identify a few problems with the solarian.

• Solarian Problem #1: The solarian is a Strength-based melee class, with mandatory class features that key off melee attacks. Despite this, it starts with only light armor proficiency, and its solar armor can be used only in light armor (whether or not it works in powered armor is ambiguous). Therefore, right from the start, solar armor is a useless class feature, and a solarian is behooved to blow their 1st-level feat on Heavy Armor Proficiency.

465 credit hidden soldier armor might impose -5 speed, but it grants 2 more EAC and KAC than 460 credit kasatha microcord I.
2,970 credit lashunta ringwear II has 3 more EAC and 4 more KAC than a 2,980 credit D-suit I.
The difference only increases from there.

Solar armor can be vindicated by allowing it to work with powered armor, but that is currently a grey area in the rules.

• Solarian Problem #2: The solar weapon is all but useless from 1st to 5th level. It is much better for a solarian to pick up a tactical pike and avail of 1d8 damage and reach that can still target adjacent creatures. 1d6 damage is pathetic.

The solar weapon finally vindicates itself at 6th level as it finally attains 2d6 damage, which goes up to 2d6+1d4 (critical bleed 1d6) with a 3,050-credit least W-boson crystal. Hooray!

Unfortunately, by 9th level, the solar weapon reaches 3d6 damage, which rises to 5d6 (critical bleed 2d6) with a 26,200-credit lesser W-boson crystal. Meanwhile, an 18,100-credit ultrathin curve blade deals 3d10 damage (critical bleed 2d6), only 1 less on average, and is significantly more economical.

In other words, the solar weapon is totally useless at 1st to 5th level, fairly useful from 6th to 8th level, and back in the dumpster from 9th to 11th level. It flip-flops back and forth between "useless" and "good" depending on the level and the affordable weapons then. This is not a good sign for a class feature.

• Solarian Problem #3: The solarian is a Strength-based melee class, yet its...

Well your posting has been very informative, and the issues you discussed have been happening and it does seem that the solarian does have a problem keeping up with damage when give equal amounts of funding at higher levels..

Sadly this has proven depressing/ disheartening in the play-throughs we have done... not sure if there is going to be an errata or something for this because 2 of us really wanted to like this alternate combatant.

This may require some homebrew/ rules to make it less gimped.. one idea we were bouncing around is letting them get some kind of "two weapon fighting" where they get perhaps another attack at lower levels or 2 attacks normally and 3 on a full attack..

still working on playing this through but that was one suggestion we came up with in house.

Grand Lodge

so awesome this class is. IMP stop making it like a fighter lol its a refreshed monk from PF is how i see it.

Liberty's Edge

Well with the full BAB, excellent stamina and HP we assumed it would be a front lined combatant. Now fighters I would assume fall into that category. But either the armor or the weapon and only proficient with light armor made it painful in a couple of areas..

So I guess it is a fighter in a way that has given up feats and such for revelations and abilities that have a warm up period.

If it was a monk wisdom to armor would be nice since they are stuck using light armor (atleast unless a feat is spent for a proficiency)

Largely what was wanted was a soldier with some flare as we are use to using monks for combat maneuvers which you can no longer use part of an attack action but have to be the entirety of it.

So from the two groups I have been playing with, it is viewed as a direct combat front light combatant with the BAB, high stamina and HP. Perhaps if those were lowered people would view it more as combat support or controller?

Scarab Sages

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Here are some things that I think people aren't taking into account.

1) Solarian is the only real 'unique' class. Soldiers are just that, soldiers. We'be seen them in a dozen space operas. Space marines, Starship Troopers, Bobba Fett. We've seen space mystics, technomancers, engineers, 'Operatives' (Han Solo types). And while people joke that Solarian are Jedi, they are their own thing, harnessing the philosophy of the stars to get their powers.

2) Solar blades/armor are free and CANNOT be destroyed/lost. There are times where trouble may break out and your soldier wasn't able to bring his minigun into the diplomatic conference. Solarian is there good to go though.

3) Blades/armor are free, and get better with time. Okay, yes, there are crystals to make them better, but instead of blowing all your money on a new gun or Dushku every other level, you get a FREE, Weapon that you CAN'T loose (or bonus armor) and enemies can't strip you of. Even with spellcasters, they could wake you up every 6 hours to prevent you from regaining spells, but the Solarian always has his blade/armor.

GM starves you for great for a few levels? Solarian don't care.

I'll take a slightly less efficient build at level one as a trade off for that.

Liberty's Edge

2 people marked this as a favorite.

My analysis of Solarian damage here seems relevant to this thread.


VampByDay wrote:
1) Solarian is the only real 'unique' class. Soldiers are just that, soldiers. We'be seen them in a dozen space operas. Space marines, Starship Troopers, Bobba Fett. We've seen space mystics, technomancers, engineers, 'Operatives' (Han Solo types). And while people joke that Solarian are Jedi, they are their own thing, harnessing the philosophy of the stars to get their powers.

That's not really a balance concern. That and it's not really THAT Unique. I mean, you are basically a cut-rate Green Lantern/Captain Cosmic.


Solarians have a great concept, but frustrating execution. With all the feedback, I believe some issues will be addressed in errata or future material. My 2 cents on what is lacking:

1) Defense: the solarian could be an agile melee fighter, with some sort of preemptive defense or something that would make it harder to hit than normal comabatants, after all, their spot should be in the middle of the combat with sword in hand. Some mechanic to improve saves or ways to avoid conditions would fit the philosopher theme. Parry could be there too.

2) Out of combat utility: The solarian is forced to have low skill points and modifyers due to it's need to invest in Str, Dex, Con and Cha. There is this artificial limitation for the class that certain abilities can only be used in combat, and even those are not very useful. Any class is better of taking a feat to emulate some cantrips and low level spells from tecnomancer or mystic. Powers that give bonus to skills, minor powers similar to cantrips, and just flavor abilities (metabolic control, seeing with eyes closed, etc...) would fit just fine.

3) Offense: I would get rid of the crystals for damage entirely. If you are going to give a weapon to a class give it complete. The crystals could be just for special effects (critical or changing damage type) as customization, not need. Also, if the theme is a sword made of impressive energy, make it at least deal the same damage of a longsword (1d8) 1d6 for the main flashy thing of the class is quite disheartening.
I would include some special moves with the solar blade. Why not throw it, or sunder objects easily, deal blinding or severing blows?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
VampByDay wrote:
And yes, there are plenty of scenarios I've played that hamper the PCs in some way by saying they can't bring a minigun into a diplomatic conference. Maybe you can only bring a sidearm or something. Like, a lot a lot. That's a real thing that happens in some games. It's not a 'fake benefit.'

At which point the combat system sorta falls completely apart. As it costs a staggering amount of money to have a half-decent backup weapon as the amount of benefit you, personally, provide to your weaponry is tiny compared to the amount you get from buying the latest toy. In addition, for non-operatives, sidearms have almost no positive qualities to them other than 'The GM might take away your main arm but won't take away your rocket launcher pistol in the same scenario.'

The issue isn't 'They have a weapon that can't be taken away'. The issue is that any situation in which they can do stuff with that fact, the entire system has fallen apart for the other players. This might be different if the game worked like say, Star Wars Saga, where you personally mattered more than your gear or Shadowrun where the difference between good gear and backup gear is very small but that's not the case in Starfinder.

A 'The GM has taken away everyone else's gear' scenario isn't a great idea in Starfinder as non-spellcasters will mostly spend it doing scratch damage to people and the spellcasters don't give a damn.


4 people marked this as a favorite.

For the record, I don't think the Solarian is irredeemable. It has some problems:

  • Low levels are dull due to a lack of useful or interesting class features- all you have to roll with at level 1 is Solar Manifestation (which is worth roughly a +1 to AC if you don't want heavy armor proficiency, since it's inferior to purchasable gear), Stellar Mode (which is a +1 to Reflex or Damage), and a pair of bad revalations you can't use until a fight is nearly over. You get revelations at even levels, but all level 3 musters is a small random non-combat skill bonus that you can't use under time pressure and level 5 is totally dead.
  • Revelations are generally uninspired. There are only a handful of them that are notable (do something exciting or fun) or powerful. Most of the list is chaff, the stronger revelations tend to be good because they're either passive or enhance something you already wanted to do (like Stellar Rush), and they're very combat focused without a lot of stuff that affects the narrative meaningfully. There are a lot of options like Radiation and Crush that are quite weak even with a really permissive reading of the rules, especially because of the next point:
  • Stats are split really heavily. You need Strength to be a viable melee threat, Dexterity to not get hit (and be worth your salt if you ever have to pick up a firearm), and Charisma (for Resolve points and the DCs of your weakest revelations- no other revelations are affected). Since Starfinder's point buy rewards specializing in one or two ability scores and punishes spreading your points around, you pretty much just get to pick two of those- and if it weren't for low Resolve points getting characters killed at low levels, you probably wouldn't touch Charisma with a 10 foot pole there.

I'm not in the mood for beating around the bush: those are some really bad problems to have. They don't render the class unplayable, though. Low levels feel terrible, but if you're willing to ditch the futile struggle to keep your save DCs relevant, you can grow up into a reasonable melee character, especially with a few of the decent revelations (like Corona and Stellar Rush). Pick up Enhanced Resistance (Kinetic) and just add fire.

It could have been a lot better, and that's probably what irks me the most about it. Forcing so much of the fluff into the light/gravity dichotomy really narrows what you can do with the class, but "space warrior with mystic powers" would have been a totally defensible chassis to build from- you could use something like that to build anything from overt jedi expies to John Carter-types you stick with passive, quiet powers functioning as unconscious psionics or unnatural luck or something. The biggest problem is the really boring revelations. A lot of the class' content is +1s and conditional +1s for combat. There's very little to inspire characters, and the only one with any real narrative weight is Astrologic Sense. Maybe that will improve with future splat books, but it won't make the other problems go away unless Paizo's more willing to make sweeping changes to classes this time around.

Also, people really should be able to pick a character option at level 1, or at least not get saddled with two pre-chosen revelations that just suck.

101 to 148 of 148 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>
Community / Forums / Starfinder / Starfinder General Discussion / First Impressions: Solarian All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.