Bounded Accuracy Isn't Bad


Prerelease Discussion

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Weather Report wrote:
Game Master Q wrote:
Make a vague and unsupported negative claim.
Ha, what part is unsupported and vague?

And with that simple, short sentence, you proved me right. Thanks!

You didn't try to deny it, you didn't try to clarify, but instead you made yet another request for someone else to do all the work while you sit back. Ah, the classics.


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Weather Report wrote:
Game Master Q wrote:
Make a vague and unsupported negative claim.
Ha, what part is unsupported and vague?

That someone can't lift an emery board but can at the same stab a T-Rex's head off? Which is patently false because emery boards have no weight, basically.

As for a Bard wrestling Pit Fiends.....ok, cool, so what? You do realize you still die horribly, right? That neither the Grappled, nor the Restrained conditions prevent the Pit Fiend from mauling you horribly? Oh, sure, if you pin it, it has disadvantage on attack rolls, but it's still 4 attacks at +14. It's gonna end you. And Pinning it takes two rounds, so it still has one round of mauling you without disadvantage. And even if the Pit Fiend somehow forgets this, it can cast Fireball at his feet every round, at will, because they're fire immune.

So, if your point is that bounded accuracy is bad because a 9th level Bard can grapple a Pit Fiend at all, fine. That's your taste, which is not everyone's. But you and CactusUnicorn speak as though this is some kind of game-breaking thing when in fact...it's not. It's silly, sure, but mechanically it's not like someone with the Grappler Feat is going to go around dominating high level encounters.


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If we stick to how it really is then people can choose the style of game they want. Numbers Go Up or not. And the truth is that expertise is applicable to athletics, which some people dig and some don't. And the truth is also that proficiency is bounded to +6 and ability mods are bounded to +5. And this does have consequences in the game, some of those consequences I happen to like and a lot of people in this thread don't like.

But if there is misinfo or outright jokes, then people might not know what edition/version is best for them.

And, the cool thing about [this broad class of games] is that you can mix&match so much. A dungeon from LotFP on a world map from 5e with monsters and PCs from Pathfinder. Or port over Iron Gods to B/X.
The community can cooperate♥

I've houseruled my favorite edition so much that it's hardly recognizable. I mix in things from other editions and even other games (hello drama points from Hillfolk!). A lot of you would hate it, and... that's ok! A lot of the stuff and ideas that are created for these games are portable. Not everything, but, a lot. We don't need to edition war♥

Well, within our own playgroups we must, if we have some player who won't get inline, but, on the internet there's just no way of either side ever "winning" so let's just describe the editions clearly and people can make choices, or mix&match.

This forum is for the PF2 playtest. I happen to love bounded accuracy and that's kinda all I needed to say. And some prefer Numbers Go Up and they have explained why. I think a bigger concern I have with PF2 is the incompatibility (different economy (silver standard), different monster scaling etc). I really appreciate the "rosetta stone"-nature of loosey-goosey systems like 5e. (Converting B/X monsters? Their to-hit bonus is half HD + 2. Converting PF monsters? Their to-hit bonus is ability mod + 3) But if a detailed, new, partially incompatible system is what people want, then it's what people want. I'm just one voice. And if what Wakedown is speculating turns out to be right, maybe the conversion will end up being even easier somehow.


Game Master Q wrote:
Weather Report wrote:
Game Master Q wrote:
Make a vague and unsupported negative claim.
Ha, what part is unsupported and vague?

And with that simple, short sentence, you proved me right. Thanks!

You didn't try to deny it, you didn't try to clarify, but instead you made yet another request for someone else to do all the work while you sit back. Ah, the classics.

Wow, what are you on about?


TheFinish wrote:
That's your taste,

Nothing to do with anyone's taste, this is simply a design mistake, much like Karelia in original Axis & Allies.


Another thing that's good about bounded accuracy is mixed party level groups. Right now we have three level threes, one level two, and two level nines.


Well, there're soft bounds, and hard bounds. It looks like scaling will be much more level-dependent in pf 2e than in 1e, so my first impression is that it is more bounded than 1e where at low level accuracy is governed primarily by stats, and at high levels it is bounded primarily by items, and secondarily by boosting abilities.

What rules we have for character creation and scaling show that stats will be better bounded at all levels, and proficiencies only scale up to legendary (+3), similarly with items. Honestly core 2e sounds well-bound to me, albeit more softly than 5e, and we'll just have to see how quickly it expands to bloat, but 1e has only had isolated problems there, so I'm not immediately worried.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
bookrat wrote:

What about all those 15th+ level characters who decided not to explore the depths of the abyss?

Wouldn't they be able to easily conquer nations and rule with an iron fist? How many cities and nations are run by the ultra powerful?

Without a bounded system, you should expect to see every nation and major city to be run by 20th level characters.

With a bounded system, the peasents actually have a chance to overthrow the government.

That people get to level 17-20 as adventurers is dependant on a GM which plays nicey-nicey with them and does not throw a too hard encounter at them along the way (otherwise known as "a Paizo AP" or just a successful campaign).

Teleporting into the throne room of Queen Abrogail expecting to take over Cheliax probably wouldn't go over as well. And that isn't even mentioning all the political stuff you would have to deal with suddenly if you somehow managed to do that. Taking over a fantasy realm is probably doable, but keeping it is a completely different story.


magnuskn wrote:
does not throw a too hard encounter at them along the way (otherwise known as "a Paizo AP" or just a successful campaign).

Magnuskn, I'd love to hear more about what you mean here — maybe in a new thread, or if you can point me to an old thread where you talk about this stuff?

Re-reading your legendary Mythic Fail thread to try to understand your comment here…

Liberty's Edge

Most rulers in Golarion are 15th level or more, with significant resources at their disposal. Could a PC group post-AP overthrow them? Maybe. I wouldn't bet on it, though.

Abrogail Thrune, one of the most likely targets, is 18th level (though, in fairness, two of her levels are Aristocrat...the other 16 are Sorcerer, though) and accompanied at most times by a CR 20 Pit Fiend 'advisor' among others. She is not a soft target for high level PCs. Add in her inevitable guards and we're talking a CR 22 encounter at a minimum. Even 17th level characters fresh from an AP will balk at that.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
2097 wrote:
magnuskn wrote:
does not throw a too hard encounter at them along the way (otherwise known as "a Paizo AP" or just a successful campaign).

Magnuskn, I'd love to hear more about what you mean here — maybe in a new thread, or if you can point me to an old thread where you talk about this stuff?

Re-reading your legendary Mythic Fail thread to try to understand your comment here…

I mean just what I said. AP's (and homebrewn campaigns as well) are balanced around the fact that you want your party to survive to see the end of the campaign.

The idea that high level characters can just take over a nation relies on the assumption that such an attempt would meet with the same balance parameters of an adventure path. Sure, a group of four level 18 characters probably can oust a ruler from the River Kingdoms. But if they'd try the same thing in Nidal, Cheliax, Taldor or Irrisen, it would probably not go as well.

Mythic characters don't count, because the rules are bad and should be stuffed into the deepest box Paizo can find, at least for player characters.


2097 wrote:
Another thing that's good about bounded accuracy is mixed party level groups. Right now we have three level threes, one level two, and two level nines.

Actually, for PF2, it sounds like that may NOT work so well. One or two levels different may not be a problem, but a level 9 in a group of level 3's is a big difference. From the previews, PF2 doesn't have "bounded accuracy" in the same manner as D&D5, so much as "tightly-controlled accuracy" because you always get a proficiency bonus equal to your level to both your attacks, and your AC and Saves. The Level 3 and Level 9 characters' Attacks, AC, and saves are going to vary by AT LEAST 6 points. Instead, two level 9 PCs are not going to vary strongly between one another in their ACs, saves, etc. We don't know that exact variance, but from all hints it won't be more than 10 to 20 points, probably closer to 10, if I'm reading between the lines correctly.

Therefore, a creature that threatens a level 3 character is going to be MUCH easier to strike and kill by a Level 9 character, much less the creature is going to find the level 9 MUCH harder to hit. A mixed party level is going to be even more disparate than in PF1.


magnuskn wrote:


I mean just what I said. AP's (and homebrewn campaigns as well) are balanced around the fact that you want your party to survive to see the end of the campaign.

The idea that high level characters can just take over a nation relies on the assumption that such an attempt would meet with the same balance parameters of an adventure path. Sure, a group of four level 18 characters probably can oust a ruler from the River Kingdoms. But if they'd try the same thing in Nidal, Cheliax, Taldor or Irrisen, it would probably not go as well.

Mythic characters don't count, because the rules are bad and should be stuffed into the deepest box Paizo can find, at least for player characters.

I've noticed that trend in later APs, but in the earliest ones that were designed for 3.5? Even in the Pathfinder-converted versions, those things are MONSTROUS! Rise of the Runelords and Curse of the Crimson Throne in particular, I've played through, twice each, and I've experienced entire TPKs in BOTH APs in Book 4 in particular on both of them.

Exception: We just finished Hell's Rebels, and there were a few really nasty fights in those (the DM never modified the combats) and we were really in danger of a TPK about three times (Books 2, 4, and 6.)


ENHenry wrote:
2097 wrote:
Another thing that's good about bounded accuracy is mixed party level groups. Right now we have three level threes, one level two, and two level nines.

Actually, for PF2, it sounds like that may NOT work so well. One or two levels different may not be a problem, but a level 9 in a group of level 3's is a big difference. From the previews, PF2 doesn't have "bounded accuracy" in the same manner as D&D5, so much as "tightly-controlled accuracy" because you always get a proficiency bonus equal to your level to both your attacks, and your AC and Saves. The Level 3 and Level 9 characters' Attacks, AC, and saves are going to vary by AT LEAST 6 points. Instead, two level 9 PCs are not going to vary strongly between one another in their ACs, saves, etc. We don't know that exact variance, but from all hints it won't be more than 10 to 20 points, probably closer to 10, if I'm reading between the lines correctly.

Therefore, a creature that threatens a level 3 character is going to be MUCH easier to strike and kill by a Level 9 character, much less the creature is going to find the level 9 MUCH harder to hit. A mixed party level is going to be even more disparate than in PF1.

The level 9 character will also be critting out the wazoo against 3rd level opponents.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
ENHenry wrote:
magnuskn wrote:


I mean just what I said. AP's (and homebrewn campaigns as well) are balanced around the fact that you want your party to survive to see the end of the campaign.

The idea that high level characters can just take over a nation relies on the assumption that such an attempt would meet with the same balance parameters of an adventure path. Sure, a group of four level 18 characters probably can oust a ruler from the River Kingdoms. But if they'd try the same thing in Nidal, Cheliax, Taldor or Irrisen, it would probably not go as well.

Mythic characters don't count, because the rules are bad and should be stuffed into the deepest box Paizo can find, at least for player characters.

I've noticed that trend in later APs, but in the earliest ones that were designed for 3.5? Even in the Pathfinder-converted versions, those things are MONSTROUS! Rise of the Runelords and Curse of the Crimson Throne in particular, I've played through, twice each, and I've experienced entire TPKs in BOTH APs in Book 4 in particular on both of them.

Exception: We just finished Hell's Rebels, and there were a few really nasty fights in those (the DM never modified the combats) and we were really in danger of a TPK about three times (Books 2, 4, and 6.)

Oh, don't get me wrong, there are a few challenging encounters in each AP (RotRL is pretty well known for this), but in general their difficulty level is written for a group of not very experienced players and it's up to the GM to rebalance things when you have a non-standard party (i.e. more or less players, high-power character concepts, etc).

Liberty's Edge

All adventures are inevitably 'going easy' on PCs simply by obeying, or coming close to obeying, the CR system. There's nothing in-universe to prevent 1st level PCs from stumbling into a CR 12 encounter and somewhat inevitably dying horribly.

All that prevents things like that is the narrative structure of this being a game where the PCs are the protagonists, so they get level appropriate challenges for the most part.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Deadmanwalking wrote:

All adventures are inevitably 'going easy' on PCs simply by obeying, or coming close to obeying, the CR system. There's nothing in-universe to prevent 1st level PCs from stumbling into a CR 12 encounter and somewhat inevitably dying horribly.

All that prevents things like that is the narrative structure of this being a game where the PCs are the protagonists, so they get level appropriate challenges for the most part.

To stop the derail, this is probably a topic for another thread about the narrative structure of adventure paths and D20 games in general. My original point was just that the idea of high-level characters taking over nations is not that easy as some people seem to think. :)


2097 wrote:
Another thing that's good about bounded accuracy is mixed party level groups. Right now we have three level threes, one level two, and two level nines.

That may be true in 5th Ed, where the accuracy is much tighter, but from what we've seen so far, try running that group in PF2 and they'll get slaughtered against anything that would present a modicum of challenge to the level 9s.

PF2's math makes it very equal in the same level, but it also makes level differences matter a LOT more.

If your example is a 5th edition party, then the level 3s and the level 2 have a +2 proficiency modifer and the level 9s have a +4. If it were a PF2 party, the level 2 has +2, the level 3s have +3 and the level 9s have +9. It's a much bigger difference, and since monsters work basically the same way, it's a much bigger deal.


@ENHenry, @TheFinish: Yeah, we've talked about it upthread how PF2, as it looks right now, would have level scaling instead of bounded accuracy

I was just saying another reason why bounded accuracy isn't bad♥


2097 wrote:

@ENHenry, @TheFinish: Yeah, we've talked about it upthread how PF2, as it looks right now, would have level scaling instead of bounded accuracy

I was just saying another reason why bounded accuracy isn't bad♥

Ah, understood now -- thought you were referencing PF2, still. Truth be told, I still prefer D&D5's bounded accuracy as a method, just because I dislike the inevitable numbers creep that tends to happen, and it reminds me more of the numbers to track from my play experiences from AD&D many years ago.

Sovereign Court

It's funny how things work out. I was really afraid 5E was going to go over like a lead balloon. That would have sucked because ive been wanting BA for decades and folks would point to it as the thing that killed D&D. Now that it is a hit, its firmly a D&D thing and 5E is just not for me...


Yeah, I was playing B/X and 1e (via clones, the reprints hadn't happened yet) when BA was announced in Legends and Lore. So it's not been a huge change for me.


2097 wrote:

Yeah, I was playing B/X and 1e (via clones, the reprints hadn't happened yet) when BA was announced in Legends and Lore. So it's not been a huge change for me.

Not sure I follow, BA (Bounded Accuracy) mentioned in Legends and Lore? 1st Ed AD&D is bounded rather loosely, AC, Ability Scores and Hit points are reasonably bounded, but the Attack Matrices (THACO) and saving throws scale quite dramatically for some classes.

I love that fighters get some of the fattest saves, something I always wanted them to bring back in later editions, make fighters king of saving throws (fits the genre).


I was comparing attack matrices of Rules Cyclopedia the other day. Fighter goes from THAC0 19 to 7 over 20 levels. 12 steps as compared to 5e's 11 steps, but those 20 levels take longer than 20 levels in 5e.
And other classes have other progression -- slower when you compare level to THAC0 but some of them have cheaper levels than fighter in terms of XP, I didn't run the numbers in that regard.

Just looked at the 1e DMG and you're right, it scales [looking at levels and ignoring XP] much faster than 5e. One step per level.

I'm so glad that D&D started looking at the basic branch again, with 5e.


Uh, that last sentence was out of place for this subforum. I apologize.


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2097 wrote:
I was comparing attack matrices of Rules Cyclopedia the other day. Fighter goes from THAC0 19 to 7 over 20 levels. 12 steps as compared to 5e's 11 steps,

5th Ed only goes from +2 to +6: 4 steps. A 2nd Ed AD&D fighter's THACO goes from 20 to 1 (BAB +0 to +19), 19 steps, similar to a 3rd Ed/PF1 fighter.


Herremann the Wise wrote:

I'm a little late to the party here but I thought I'd offer an opinion that I like bounded accuracy in concert with using proficiency as a gateway to better abilities/feats. Essentially, the modifier numbers are important but they're not the be all and end all. Now, the level of proficiency (from untrained to legendary) has a bigger impact on play, stopping modifiers from ruling every character creation decision. Coming up with a couple of examples might be best to explain my thinking.

Combat with a Longsword:
• Low Level Proficient Fighter (who is super strong) has a to hit modifier of +11.
• High Level Mastery Fighter (who only has above average strength) has a to hit modifier of +13.
• The proficient low level fighter hits but only does "good" damage with their successful hit.
• The mastery high level fighter also hits but does "excellent" damage, nullifies the target from using reactions until their next turn, while also forcing the target to offer opportunity to all adjacent foes.

By using proficiency as a gateway to special abilities, the shift focuses from having the best modifier or AC to the abilities that go with higher levels of proficiency.

Perception check leading to Combat
• Low Level Proficient Combatant makes their perception check so is not surprised and has a very good initiative score.
• High Level Mastery Combatant makes their "mastery" perception check, is not surprised, also has a very good initiative score, and further allows all allies within 30' to share that perception check, as well as giving them a second reaction "action" for the first round of combat.

Again, while the modifier is important in determining, success or failure, it is what the Master can do with that success or failure that has the bigger effect on the final outcome. Bang for buck is going to characters/monsters with higher proficiency.

However, it looks like with the critical success/failure mechanics in PF2, they are still relying on the modifiers doing most of the heavy lifting...

Along this vein, while a Pathfinder adherent I wouldn't mind flatter math in combat.

I think that SKILLS should be more gatewayed according to ability, and it looks like the proficiency tiers system would implement that.

But I would perfectly fine with flatter math in BATTLE. Especially when you consider that hit points are an abstraction of "general toughness and stamina" anyway. A goblin stabbing and doing 8 damage to a fighter with 200 hit points isn't necessarily nicking an artery - the goblin is being a nuisance and little more. And that is precisely what the "damage" by low-level enemies under flatter math/bounded accuracy would do. Adding +20 differences in accuracy on top of that -- when a d20 is the random number generator -- doubles down on something that already is emulated by the wildly-varying differences in HP.

Just as the weapons in 2e are less about simply the numbers, I would like for 2e to go more in the direction where qualitative differences define what makes someone "high level" versus "low level," rather than just numbers.


The Rot Grub wrote:

Along this vein, while a Pathfinder adherent I wouldn't mind flatter math in combat.

I think that SKILLS should be more gatewayed according to ability, and it looks like the proficiency tiers system would implement that.

But I would perfectly fine with flatter math in BATTLE. Especially when you consider that hit points are an abstraction of "general toughness and stamina" anyway. A goblin stabbing and doing 8 damage to a fighter with 200 hit points isn't necessarily nicking an artery - the goblin is being a nuisance and little more. And that is precisely what the "damage" by low-level enemies under flatter math/bounded accuracy would do. Adding +20 differences in accuracy on top of that -- when a d20 is the random number generator -- doubles down on something that already is emulated by the wildly-varying differences in HP.

Just as the weapons in 2e are less about simply the numbers, I would like for 2e to go more in the direction where qualitative differences define what makes someone "high level" versus "low level," rather than just numbers.

Nice, I agree, not so into big numbers anymore, prefer a flatter math chassis, rather roll d20+7 vs. DC 20, than d20+27 vs. DC 40, not so thrilled with AC being attached to level for monsters. PF2, however, is leveraging the big numbers with the 4-tiers of success system, so that changes things.


This guy… T_T

Weather Report wrote:
2097 wrote:
I was comparing attack matrices of Rules Cyclopedia the other day. Fighter goes from THAC0 19 to 7 over 20 levels. 12 steps as compared to 5e's 11 steps,
5th Ed only goes from +2 to +6: 4 steps. A 2nd Ed AD&D fighter's THACO goes from 20 to 1 (BAB +0 to +19), 19 steps, similar to a 3rd Ed/PF1 fighter.

omits to quote that I did write that in 1e it goes one step per level, as opposed to the Basic branch (i.e. RC) (+1 to +12) and 5e (+5 [if you have a sixteen stat] to +11).

and omits that in 2e, if you have strength between 8 and 16 for mêlée, and dex between 6 and 15 for ranged, you don't adjust your to hit.

in 5e you have an ability modifier that is added to attacks. making it go to eleven, uh, to +11, as you reach +6 prof and +5 ability mod.
which matches up pretty well with Rules Cyclopedia and is, just as I said, about half of what AD&D has

I don't want anyone missing out on a great game just because of these mischievous jokes that Weather Report makes.

If it's their serious taste that grappling should not be a skill or that rogues&bards should not be good at skills then that is fine!

We can describe the games factually and people can then mix and match the rules that they like and that makes sense to them!

I love Paizo so much even though we usually think differently about games. I want there to be more peace across the larger community of this class of games ♥

(I was also being unclear in implying that in 5e you went from +1 to +11 which was a mistake on my part, you don't start at +1.)


2097 wrote:

This guy… T_T

Weather Report wrote:
2097 wrote:
I was comparing attack matrices of Rules Cyclopedia the other day. Fighter goes from THAC0 19 to 7 over 20 levels. 12 steps as compared to 5e's 11 steps,
5th Ed only goes from +2 to +6: 4 steps. A 2nd Ed AD&D fighter's THACO goes from 20 to 1 (BAB +0 to +19), 19 steps, similar to a 3rd Ed/PF1 fighter.

omits to quote that I did write that in 1e it goes one step per level, as opposed to the Basic branch (i.e. RC) (+1 to +12) and 5e (+5 [if you have a sixteen stat] to +11).

and omits that in 2e, if you have strength between 8 and 16 for mêlée, and dex between 6 and 15 for ranged, you don't adjust your to hit.

in 5e you have an ability modifier that is added to attacks. making it go to eleven, uh, to +11, as you reach +6 prof and +5 ability mod.
which matches up pretty well with Rules Cyclopedia and is, just as I said, about half of what AD&D has

I don't want anyone missing out on a great game just because of these mischievous jokes that Weather Report makes.

If it's their serious taste that grappling should not be a skill or that rogues&bards should not be good at skills then that is fine!

We can describe the games factually and people can then mix and match the rules that they like and that makes sense to them!

I love Paizo so much even though we usually think differently about games. I want there to be more peace across the larger community of this class of games ♥

(I was also being unclear in implying that in 5e you went from +1 to +11 which was a mistake on my part, you don't start at +1.)

You can easily start with a 20 in 5th edition though, so you just go from +7 to +11, so 4 steps. Since you can begin with "max" attribute in basically all systems (except PF1, where you can start with 20 but your actual max without magic is 25), it doesn't make sense to include them. You just see how the classes scale.

5th Edition Fighter goes from +2 to +6, so 4 steps. The Rules Cyclopedia Fghter goes from THACO 19 to THACO 7, so 12 steps. A PF1 Fighter goes from +1 to +20, 19 steps. Adding Ability Score Mods doesn't change the steps, just the numbers you start and end with.

If you count expertise in 5th, then it's +4 to +12, or 8 steps. But AFAIK there's no way for a Fighter to get Expertise in Attack Rolls. So it's pretty easy to see how the math in 5th edition is far more constrained than in the other systems. And that's fine for a lot of people, and not very fine for others.

As for 5th Edition being a great game, I'll have to disagree. And bounded accuracy is a big part of why I don't think it's very good. But PF2E isn't going that way, so on that front I just shrug and move on.


2097 wrote:

I don't want anyone missing out on a great game just because of these mischievous jokes that Weather Report makes.

Whoa, I don't know what mischievous jokes you are talking about, and I would never put someone off of AD&D or 5th Ed, two of my favourite systems of all time.

Yes, you were unclear about the separation of Attack Matrices/BAB/Proficiency Bonus and Ability Score modifiers.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
TheFinish wrote:
You can easily start with a 20 in 5th edition though, so you just go from +7 to +11, so 4 steps.

Um, you can't easily start with a 20 in 5e. The highest starting score from point buy or the standard array is 15, with an extra 2 points from your race bringing you to a maximum of 17. Yes, if you roll attributes and get lucky you can start with a 20, but that hasn't been the suggested way to create a character in quite some time and even if it was I wouldn't call it "easy".


rooneg wrote:
TheFinish wrote:
You can easily start with a 20 in 5th edition though, so you just go from +7 to +11, so 4 steps.
Um, you can't easily start with a 20 in 5e. The highest starting score from point buy or the standard array is 15, with an extra 2 points from your race bringing you to a maximum of 17. Yes, if you roll attributes and get lucky you can start with a 20, but that hasn't been the suggested way to create a character in quite some time and even if it was I wouldn't call it "easy".

Rolling is default in 5th Ed, for better or worse.


rooneg wrote:
TheFinish wrote:
You can easily start with a 20 in 5th edition though, so you just go from +7 to +11, so 4 steps.
Um, you can't easily start with a 20 in 5e. The highest starting score from point buy or the standard array is 15, with an extra 2 points from your race bringing you to a maximum of 17. Yes, if you roll attributes and get lucky you can start with a 20, but that hasn't been the suggested way to create a character in quite some time and even if it was I wouldn't call it "easy".

To add to this, since the comparison was to AD&D 2e, it's very difficult to adjust you're stats past Character Creation in 2e, whereas it's a default part of the game in 5e. So it absolutely is a viable analysis to compare prof + stat bonus to just THAC0 changes. Those are the changing items in each edition which determine character improvement.


Weather Report wrote:
rooneg wrote:
TheFinish wrote:
You can easily start with a 20 in 5th edition though, so you just go from +7 to +11, so 4 steps.
Um, you can't easily start with a 20 in 5e. The highest starting score from point buy or the standard array is 15, with an extra 2 points from your race bringing you to a maximum of 17. Yes, if you roll attributes and get lucky you can start with a 20, but that hasn't been the suggested way to create a character in quite some time and even if it was I wouldn't call it "easy".
Rolling is default in 5th Ed, for better or worse.

The default is to roll 4d6 and pick the best 3 OR or use a standard array. So you're both right! :)

Using point buy is the variant.


bookrat wrote:
So it absolutely is a viable analysis to compare prof + stat bonus to just THAC0 changes.

Not really, as stats change the Attack Matrices/THACO/BAB/Proficiency Bonus base adjustments in all games.


Weather Report wrote:
bookrat wrote:
So it absolutely is a viable analysis to compare prof + stat bonus to just THAC0 changes.
Not really, as stats change the Attack Matrices/THACO/BAB/Proficiency Bonus base adjustments in all games.

I take it you're unfamiliar with 2e?

Once you have your based stats, they don't change again without some powerful magic items or DM ruling. There's no base mechanic to improve your stats as you level up. Whereas in 5e, there is a base mechanic built right into the system to improve stats as you level up.

What determines improvement in attacking as you level up in 2e? THAC0 and maybe a weapon proficiency (depending on if you use any of the variants beyond specialization).

What determines improvement in attacking someone as you level up in 5e? Proficiency bonus and ASI.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
bookrat wrote:
Weather Report wrote:
rooneg wrote:
TheFinish wrote:
You can easily start with a 20 in 5th edition though, so you just go from +7 to +11, so 4 steps.
Um, you can't easily start with a 20 in 5e. The highest starting score from point buy or the standard array is 15, with an extra 2 points from your race bringing you to a maximum of 17. Yes, if you roll attributes and get lucky you can start with a 20, but that hasn't been the suggested way to create a character in quite some time and even if it was I wouldn't call it "easy".
Rolling is default in 5th Ed, for better or worse.

The default is to roll 4d6 and pick the best 3 OR or use a standard array. So you're both right! :)

Using point buy is the variant.

Regardless, even if you are using 4d6 drop lowest that's only a 9.34% of getting a single 18 out of your 6 rolls. That's not "easy" by any stretch of the imagination.

Stats shamelessly stolen from https://anydice.com/articles/4d6-drop-lowest/


Well, you were joking earlier that characters were unable to lift emery boards or that they could grapple pit fiends so I thought you were kidding now too.

To others: yeah I'm now confused if we're trying to make 5e sound like it has many steps or few steps. I think: few steps. Which I love. Like in Zelda where you get more hearts and a sharper sword and the enemies take more hits and deal more damage but you can go wherever and still interact meaningfully with the enemy♥ HP go up, accuracy don't go that much up

RC has 12 steps, AD&D 1e and 2e has 20 steps. For fighters. Fewer steps for other classes.

And in AD&D you don't get an ability mod in the same way. Instead you can get a tiny to hit bonus if you have very high scores. And, as bookrat says, they don't change much. You can use a wish spell or some magic.

But some here are right that in 5e they don't need to change a lot either. If you start with a 16 (that doesn't always happen if you roll low, but...) you can then get two ASI in your fave stat and then that's it.

I've been complicit in letting this thread go super OT T_T
Thank you book rats for your help♥

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