Static AC vs scaling Attack Bonus


Prerelease Discussion


1 person marked this as a favorite.

You know what I'm talking about. Character's AC doesn't increase with level except by acquiring magic items or other higher level powers, but even the lowly wizard gets an increasing BAB PLUS all of the same magic items and abilities that boost it.

What ends up happening is that a low level tank fighter (Say full plate and heavy shield) will have like 21-22 AC, which will be awesome for a lot of the early levels. But by like level 10, he is probably not gonna be that close to 30 AC (Add +2 armor, +1 shield, +1 deflection +1 nat armor) but his attack bonus will likely have increased by a more significant amount, often up to +10 difference.

What this causes is that, unless you're using some special build to get AC, monster attack rolls eventually become kinda autohit as they start getting like +20 on their attack rolls (Way higher at CR10) and they also start getting more and more silly natural armor bonuses to keep up with the rapidly increasing attack bonuses, while the PCs dont have this luxury.

What do you think 2E will to to address this issue? Some measure of bounded accuracy? Perhaps some way for AC to scale together with BAB?
Either way, It's a huge change in gameplay when PF starts with reasonable miss-rates but then becomes like an MMO with tank and spank boss fights and nobody missing.


There is a solution which takes steps towards fixing this and many of the game's other problems. For some baffling reason it is not used by everyone.

Automatic bonus progression. We need it expanded and we need it as a core rule.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I am guessing that AC does scale with level in the new edition.


ChibiNyan wrote:
You know what I'm talking about. Character's AC doesn't increase with level except by acquiring magic items or other higher level powers, but even the lowly wizard gets an increasing BAB PLUS all of the same magic items and abilities that boost it.

We play different classes.

My Kensai gains a heck of a lot of AC, both directly from leveling and from feats gained in the process of leveling.

Swashbuckler, monk, duelist, swordlord, etc. There are plenty of ways to gain additional AC through levels / feats. Items just add to that and, in the case of my magus, contributed all of 2-3 points to my 36AC by 10th level.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

There is another thing to consider, if AC scales with attacks AND you can further upgrade it, then you will start having defense out scale offense.

This can turn combats into sissy slap fights of everyone needing to roll 15+ and extending combats.

Personally, I hope that it still take a big investment to keep your AC up with how attack scales. I much prefer "active" defense, like how shields work in PF2. This gives me hope that there will be lower AC's but more ways to spend actions to mitigate damage as a means of survival.


If the Untrained -2 to Legendary +3 thing is real you could add your proficiency bonus to AC and that would help. Maybe an armor master feat that allows you to add double. A skill based +6 to AC seems reasonable for a tank spec character, especially if it is replacing some magic items.


Zolanoteph wrote:

There is a solution which takes steps towards fixing this and many of the game's other problems. For some baffling reason it is not used by everyone.

Automatic bonus progression. We need it expanded and we need it as a core rule.

Well, you answered the reason it is not used by everyone. It isn't a core rule. Unless you come to the forums, or happen to own the correct sourcebook, you don't even know it's a thing.


AaronUnicorn wrote:
Zolanoteph wrote:

There is a solution which takes steps towards fixing this and many of the game's other problems. For some baffling reason it is not used by everyone.

Automatic bonus progression. We need it expanded and we need it as a core rule.

Well, you answered the reason it is not used by everyone. It isn't a core rule. Unless you come to the forums, or happen to own the correct sourcebook, you don't even know it's a thing.

Automatic bonus progression doesn't help this as far as I know. It takes a bit longer to get the AC bonus on multiple pieces... But on the other hand, the AC increase is mandatory! Still can't keep up that well, since you also get an Attack boost to compensate.

Have just recently started experimenting with it. It does give more AC boosting things than attack ones. Suppose we'll see.


Partizanski wrote:
There is another thing to consider, if AC scales with attacks AND you can further upgrade it, then you will start having defense out scale offense.

AC out-scales attack in PF1.

It's just that few people choose to do so, preferring high DPR.

Community / Forums / Archive / Pathfinder / Playtests & Prerelease Discussions / Pathfinder Playtest / Pathfinder Playtest Prerelease Discussion / Static AC vs scaling Attack Bonus All Messageboards
Recent threads in Pathfinder Playtest Prerelease Discussion