Why are Wands of CLW such a problem?


Prerelease Discussion

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We recently had our first session run by a DM I’d never played with before. I was surprised to find that he house rules that all “out of combat” healing is basically maximized (like Maximize Spell). This applies even to Channel Energy, which made even our 1st level Cleric’s channels pretty great. I kind of look forward to not needing to roll so many d8s and track lots of wand charges in that game. I guess I might be able to look forward to the same in PF2E though I might also need to be more careful about recklessly taking damage (I'm already pretty carteful with most PCs)

I’m not sure yet if PF2E will really have a built in assumption that you enter a lot of fights without full HP, but if so maybe that would help some DMs limit their tendency to try to make every fight a deadly challenge. I guess it could also just mean that experienced players won’t lecture newer ones about how inefficient it is to buy wands of higher level Cure spells. It seems like you might get enough Resonance to heal yourself pretty well as long as you have appropriately leveled wands. I guess that could be reduced by the magic items you have, but presumably they’d help you do better in fights and take less damage to begin with.

Since potions are going to be limited by Resonance too I hope they’re a little more effective than they are now. It already often doesn’t seem worth buying and using them in 1E beyond the lowest levels or to have certain utility spells available.


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Kerrilyn wrote:
graystone wrote:
Why should it be thought of as a big secret? What stops it from being commonly known? If the character can roll to know a troll's vulnerabilities why can't they roll to know CLW wands are the cheapest alternative? IMO that's a DC 10 [or lower] check.

Well, leaving aside how common knowledge can often be wrong, that's sort of falling in line with.. how many hit points does the troll have?

Do you let the players know that? If you do, well, then you're running a very meta-ish game, and they prolly would know how efficient it is. If not, no.

it's parsing rilly fine information too -- it's only bestest outside of battle. In battle, you would prolly use the highest wand/potion you could get, as it would cost a lot less than a 5000 gp raise dead. So would the myths, stories, and legends around the wand be able to discern that subtle distinction?

10 DC, btw, is silly. That means that anybody can make the check (knowledge only requires training for DCs above 10), and anybody can pass it by taking ten as long as they don't have an int penalty. It's for rudimentary knowledge. like... trolls are monsters and scary rudimentary, and maybe that they live under bridges and eat goats. The DC to know specific monster weaknesses is 10+CR for comparison.

While I can imagine heroes returning to the tavern and regaling the patrons with tales of the hideous monster that could only be harmed by fire, I doubt they boasted for hours on end how their little cure stick from Magic Mart™ healed them all up after the fight, like as if they had the troll's own regeneration.

Okie...now I'm imagining the Magic Mart shopkeep as being that Comic Book Shop Guy from the Simpsons. "Actually, the Wand of Cure Light wounds is the best value per gold piece, I'll have you know. You would be foolish to buy anything else. Best. Wand. Ever."

Wait wait wait wait. “Trolls are scary monsters that eat goats and live under bridges,” is a DC 5 check in this reality where they don’t even exist. In a realm where they are real that information isn’t even a check. People just know it. Like they no how to eat, drink, screw, and that trolls are scary.


graystone wrote:
I don't find it "meta" for characters to understand how their world works. In a world where everything runs of HP and having spells that heal it and sense it, it seems odd/meta to NOT understand them.

Um, hit points are supposed to be an abstraction, that may not even represent actual wounds. The characters aren't supposed to be aware of them. When they get hit by a sword, it hurts. When they get healed, they "feel a bit better". Obviously the player knows exactly how much as they have to write it down on the sheet for recordkeeping. But the only guide that the character themselves would have is "owie" vs "OWIE" vs "I.. I really don't feel so good" vs. "*thud*".

Do you imagine your character running around with a HP gauge over their head like in a CRPG? That's clearly and plainly visible to them? Do other people see it too?

Since it's a table top RPG, and open to customization, you're allowed to play that way if everybody agrees at your table. That's not the usual expectation though.

graystone wrote:
After a fight, use this... WOW was that difficult to parse... :P

Apparently some things are. Then again as a cleric, I have no skill points to put into writing so...

graystone wrote:
Not quite accurate. "For common monsters, such as goblins, the DC of this check equals 5 + the monster's CR." Wands of CLW SEEM mighty common as does healing and HP... SO maybe DC 10 is high?

The CR of the CLW wand thread is something like 55~ :P


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Kerrilyn wrote:
Do you imagine your character running around with a HP gauge over their head like in a CRPG? That's clearly and plainly visible to them? Do other people see it too?

When someone casts death watch that is literally exactly what they see.

Scarab Sages

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BigDTBone wrote:
Kerrilyn wrote:
Do you imagine your character running around with a HP gauge over their head like in a CRPG? That's clearly and plainly visible to them? Do other people see it too?

When someone casts death watch that is literally exactly what they see.

The Blood Reader Slayer Talent does the same thing too.


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BigDTBone wrote:
Wait wait wait wait. “Trolls are scary monsters that eat goats and live under bridges,” is a DC 5 check in this reality where they don’t even exist. In a realm where they are real that information isn’t even a check. People just know it. Like they no how to eat, drink, screw, and that trolls are scary.

Actually they don't live under bridges and may or may not eat goats. They live in 'cold mountains' according to the PRD. So Skyrim I guess?

That was just an allusion to that old Three Billy Goats Gruff story... an example about how legends and stories that aren't first-hand knowledge could be.. tainted.. Wait.. did you miss that? Is it possible that.. the DC is higher than 5?

There's nothing in the knowledge skill that says the information is guaranteed to be correct. Even today, people have incorrect knowledge that they "know" is "true".

Master shipwrights in the days long ago would regularly make sailing ships that would capsize in a stiff breeze because they did not know how their world works, despite centuries of accumulated experience (Vasa, Mary Rose, etc). Metacentric height? dynamic stability? righting action? what's that? *splash*

BigDTBone wrote:
When someone casts death watch that is literally exactly what they see.
CRB p265 wrote:

Using the powers of necromancy, you can determine the

condition of creatures near death within the spell’s range. You
instantly know whether each creature within the area is dead,
fragile (alive and wounded, with 3 or fewer hit points left), fighting
off death (alive with 4 or more hit points), healthy, undead, or
neither alive nor dead (such as a construct). Deathwatch sees
through any spell or ability that allows creatures to feign death.

No - only if they're dead / alive+about to die / alive+NOT about to die / full / undead / construct.

So leaving aside dead, undead, and constructs, it's just < 4 hp, >4hp <full, and full. Personally I would like it if they expanded it so that it was like bottom / middle / upper third of health, might actually be worth casting then (aside from detecting undeads and constructs).

The only point that's open for arguing here is whether or not this level of meta is acceptable (and that's like an opinion and table-specific, and discouraged by pritty much every author and publisher since Gary Gygax), NOT whether or not it's meta. It's clearly meta.


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Kerrilyn wrote:
It's clearly meta.

To you maybe but NOT to me. Too many abilities rely on HP for the character to have NO clue what they are or how they work. For instance, read Blood Reader: "While able to see a studied target, a slayer with this talent knows exactly how many hit points his opponent has remaining. This only works against living targets." The slayer LITERALLY knows the EXACT number of HP... It's 0% meta... People IN GAME can KNOW your EXACT hp total... They CAN SEE how much a healing spell can cure... They CAN DO SIMPLE MATH to figure out how much a charge cost/hp cured IN GAME WITHOUT meta...

So IMO, the only thing that is clear is how incorrect your claim of meta is...


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graystone wrote:
Kerrilyn wrote:
It's clearly meta.

To you maybe but NOT to me. Too many abilities rely on HP for the character to have NO clue what they are or how they work. For instance, read Blood Reader: "While able to see a studied target, a slayer with this talent knows exactly how many hit points his opponent has remaining. This only works against living targets." The slayer LITERALLY knows the EXACT number of HP... It's 0% meta... People IN GAME can KNOW your EXACT hp total... They CAN SEE how much a healing spell can cure... They CAN DO SIMPLE MATH to figure out how much a charge cost/hp cured IN GAME WITHOUT meta...

So IMO, the only thing that is clear is how incorrect your claim of meta is...

To be fair, that ability and class is only a couple years old and runs contrary to pretty much all established flavor in PF and every edition of D&D ever.

Obviously players know how much HP they have and can act on that information, they may have a good idea of how much HP an enemy has left with a good Knowledge check or a Deathwatch spell (that I have always houseruled to tell you which quarter of their HP the target is in). But the character in context wouldn't know this. Again, they are experienced adventurers who have a lot of experience with injury and healing, and can probably approximate pretty well how injured someone is. But they wouldn't know what a "hit point" is or be able to track someone's HP to the last drop. Even the in-context Slayer doesn't know the target's exact HP, that is a meta ability for the player not the character.


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Fuzzypaws wrote:
To be fair, that ability and class is only a couple years old and runs contrary to pretty much all established flavor in PF and every edition of D&D ever.

It does? Base spells from core work on HD/level and how are they any less 'meta'? When do you get a new magic missile if you don't understand HD/level? And even if we go with you, it's been an "established flavor" for 4 YEARS now, so it's now like it's 'new' anymore.

Fuzzypaws wrote:
But the character in context wouldn't know this.

Why? What is it that prevents them from estimating their health in comparison to damage they might take? As pointed out, there are abilities that will give you an EXACT total.

Fuzzypaws wrote:
But they wouldn't know what a "hit point" is or be able to track someone's HP to the last drop.

#1 does it matter what label they put on it? and #2 Blood Reader proves you wrong. The ability is one of the CHARACTER and NOT the player. They get the exact HP total period: full stop. "a slayer with this talent knows exactly how many hit points his opponent has remaining": NOT 'the player of the slayer knows'...

Fuzzypaws wrote:
Even the in-context Slayer doesn't know the target's exact HP, that is a meta ability for the player not the character.

How can you get that out of the wording of the ability? That's like saying detect evil lets the player detect it and not the character... :P


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graystone wrote:

They should know their own and be able to feel how much they are healed.

Why? Do you know after being under surgery how much time you need to recover?

This is like characters "knowing" that falchions are the best option. They don't know that. The player does, it is a metagame decision

In any case, metagame decisions are not bad per se. It is the player who decides which feat he takes too, based on the game engine. The real problem with CLW wands is not that it makes little sense to carry a quiver of low level wands at high level because it is easy for him to know it is cheaper. The real problem is that they are lame. Lame as f...


graystone wrote:

Why? What is it that prevents them from estimating their health in comparison to damage they might take? As pointed out, there are abilities that will give you an EXACT total.

Have you ever seen a thread with a new player, or a less math oriented player, asking why 2 handing a scimitar is better than using a 2h sword, which does more damage? Have you seen how it invariably becomes a math proof, that shows why, beyond a certain level of static dmg mod, the scimitar comes ahead because of crit chance? Well, the character has even less info than the new/less math oriented player. He only has his feelings. And those deceive you.

Take a look at real life sports. Until very recently, players thought that midrange was a better option than 3 pointers, because they felt they scored at a higher clip. NFL coaches still punt in 4 downs in situations where they should not, mathematically. And those are examples of people who "know the engine", ie: they know a 3 pointer is worth 3, and a 2 pointer is worth 2, and what % you make. In healing the engine is far more obscure


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Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber

Frankly, I've never liked the flavor of wands being expendable at all. I much prefer a system where a wand is an implement, not a fuel source. A wand of healing should essentially be something that boosts healing magics when used as an additional 'focus' component. I actually think something like this works quite well in the new system, where spell actions are component based, so not only does it take holding the wand to gain it's benefits, but takes an extra action as well.


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gustavo iglesias wrote:
graystone wrote:

Why? What is it that prevents them from estimating their health in comparison to damage they might take? As pointed out, there are abilities that will give you an EXACT total.

Have you ever seen a thread with a new player, or a less math oriented player, asking why 2 handing a scimitar is better than using a 2h sword, which does more damage? Have you seen how it invariably becomes a math proof, that shows why, beyond a certain level of static dmg mod, the scimitar comes ahead because of crit chance? Well, the character has even less info than the new/less math oriented player. He only has his feelings. And those deceive you.

...

Let's see. The scimitar's damage is (3.5+x)(1.15) where 3.5 is average damage for 1d6, x is static bonuses and 0.15 is the chance of a crit. A greatsword's damage is (7+x)(1.10), where 7 is average damage for 2d6, x is static bonuses, and 0.10 is the chance of a crit.

(3.5+x)(1.15) > (7+x)(1.10)
4.025 + 1.15x > 7.7 + 1.10x
0.05x > 3.675
x > 73.5

Sorry, but the scimitar deals less damage unless the two-handed static bonuses are 74 or more.

I can even explain it without the algebra: if you roll an 18, the scimitar crits for 7+2x damage while the greatsword does not crit so does only 7+x damage. Since that advantage of x occurs only one time out of 20, that x has to justify not having the extra 3.5 damage on the other results. Even if you miss on half those results, say you hit on an 11 or higher, that is nine results where the greatsword does more damage. And missing half the time means that crits fail to confirm half the time, of you get that advantage of x only half the time, too. So x has to be at least 19*3.5 = 66.5 in order for the scimitar to do better. (I got 66.5 instead of 73.5 because I did not throw in that the greatsword gets an extra 7 damage rather than an extra 3.5 damage when it crits on a 19 or 20.)

I had assumed that gustavo iglesias was right, and did the math to argue that a small advantage is hard to notice. I was surprised that he was wrong for any ordinary case.

"Kerrilyn' wrote:
Master shipwrights in the days long ago would regularly make sailing ships that would capsize in a stiff breeze because they did not know how their world works, despite centuries of accumulated experience (Vasa, Mary Rose, etc). Metacentric height? dynamic stability? righting action? what's that? *splash*

Thank you, Kerrilyn, for providing names so that I could read references. The English ship Mary Rose sank in 1545 A.D. and the Swedish ship Vasa sank in 1628 A.D. The Mary Rose gave 33 years of service before it sank, so I would not call that one a design failure. But the Vasa sank on her maiden voyage, definitely a design failure. The shipwrights added an extra gun deck for the 72 large brass cannons on the ship, which made it too tall and too topheavy. The captain and vice admiral noticed that it was topheavy from observing it in dock, but launched it anyways because the project was ordered by the king and the vice admiral did not want to disappoint the king. (Wikipedia link)

So, also surprisingly, observation did judge the Vasa correctly.

And my clincher is that if the the characters in the game are incapable of noticing that Cure Moderate Wounds is not six times better than Cure Light Wounds, would they be able to notice that Cure Moderate Wounds is twice as good as Cure Light Wounds? If they are so inobservant, then one cure spell is as good as another, so why not use the cheap one?


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gustavo iglesias wrote:
The player does, it is a metagame decision

That's like saying that a character can NEVER make a decision so EVERYTHING they do is meta. They are 100% able to figure things out. X works better over time.

PS: there are also abilities like Blood Reader that can give for more than feelings: exact healing amounts can be had with it.

gustavo iglesias wrote:
The real problem is that they are lame.

I've never been able to figure out why some think so. It's as exciting as any other healing option. You take x time to heal x hp to x people... Not really seeing how wand bad and other options good.

gustavo iglesias wrote:
Have you ever seen a thread with a new player, or a less math oriented player, asking why 2 handing a scimitar is better than using a 2h sword, which does more damage?

And? A debate by players is oriented to PLAYERS, while a debate by characters would be oriented to CHARACTERS. How are characters incapable of figuring out which weapons hurt more or are more likely to deal extra damage?

PS: there are also abilities like Blood Reader that can give for more than feelings: exact damage amounts can be had with it.

gustavo iglesias wrote:
He only has his feelings. And those deceive you.

Then what about generations of adventurers collective feelings? What about adventures that can actually SEE the numbers of hp damage dealt with a weapon? What if the math is accessible, because it IS?

PS: there are also abilities like Blood Reader that can give for more than feelings: exact damage amounts can be had with it.

gustavo iglesias wrote:
sports stuff

Healing isn't though. Someone with Blood Reader can tell you the EXACT amount of healing done. It's not hard to keep track of averages. Math can be done by characters. Hence healing isn't "far more obscure". It's available to anyone that wants to figure it out.

PS: there are also abilities like Blood Reader that can give for more than feelings: exact damage/healing amounts can be had with it.

RPG Superstar 2014 Top 32

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I like having CLW wands in my games that I run, sitting around poking everyone with a stick after each battle doesn't bother me.
I am also completely willing to try a new system, and see if I like it better.


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Suppose you have an attack that deals the minimum amount of harm required to be damaging to all creature types (i.e 1 point of lethal). If you repeatedly hit a creature with said attack (assume you have a way of detecting if a critical occurs, such as crit feats that apply non-damaging conditions) until it gains the disabled condition, you know the total hit points of your target. Any healing that brings them from 0 to full must be at or greater than their total hit points. You can then run as many trials as you would like to determine the probability that any given use of a healing effect produces this result.

A wand of Cure Light Wounds heals between 2 and 9 minimum registered damage increments, distributed uniformly.

Silver Crusade

Mathmuse wrote:
gustavo iglesias wrote:
graystone wrote:

Why? What is it that prevents them from estimating their health in comparison to damage they might take? As pointed out, there are abilities that will give you an EXACT total.

Have you ever seen a thread with a new player, or a less math oriented player, asking why 2 handing a scimitar is better than using a 2h sword, which does more damage? Have you seen how it invariably becomes a math proof, that shows why, beyond a certain level of static dmg mod, the scimitar comes ahead because of crit chance? Well, the character has even less info than the new/less math oriented player. He only has his feelings. And those deceive you.

...

Let's see. The scimitar's damage is (3.5+x)(1.15) where 3.5 is average damage for 1d6, x is static bonuses and 0.15 is the chance of a crit. A greatsword's damage is (7+x)(1.10), where 7 is average damage for 2d6, x is static bonuses, and 0.10 is the chance of a crit.

(3.5+x)(1.15) > (7+x)(1.10)
4.025 + 1.15x > 7.7 + 1.10x
0.05x > 3.675
x > 73.5

Sorry, but the scimitar deals less damage unless the two-handed static bonuses are 74 or more.

I can even explain it without the algebra: if you roll an 18, the scimitar crits for 7+2x damage while the greatsword does not crit so does only 7+x damage. Since that advantage of x occurs only one time out of 20, that x has to justify not having the extra 3.5 damage on the other results. Even if you miss on half those results, say you hit on an 11 or higher, that is nine results where the greatsword does more damage. And missing half the time means that crits fail to confirm half the time, of you get that advantage of x only half the time, too. So x has to be at least 19*3.5 = 66.5 in order for the scimitar to do better. (I got 66.5 instead of 73.5 because I did not throw in that the greatsword gets an extra 7 damage rather than an extra 3.5 damage when it crits on a 19 or 20.)

I had assumed that gustavo iglesias was right, and did the math to argue that a small...

The scimitar will outclass the greatsword. Not at first, but at the point where you're threatening on 15-20 (or 30% of the time) and you start tacking on critical feats which are fairly substantial. Because trading a small variable % on the dice for things like bleeding, blindness, etc. is much more valuable than pure damage.

Also with the Scimitar you have the option to use it one handed and pick up a shield. That kind of versatility will give you more options with your character.

And to your non-math explanation, improved crit throws that out the window.

If you need an 11 or higher (50%) to hit and both users have the feat, the Scimitar is critting 50% of all hits. Where the greatsword is critting only 20% of all hits.

If you need a 15 or higher to hit, the scimitar is threatening crits on every strike.

Obviously it's a lot more variable than just simple numbers and when you factor in a lot of the feats that the scimitar wielder can use as opposed to the greatsword wielder, the scimitar again wins out.

On the topic of CLW wands however, I was never really a fan of it.


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Mathmuse wrote:
Thank you, Kerrilyn, for providing names so that I could read references. The English ship Mary Rose sank in 1545 A.D. and the Swedish ship Vasa sank in 1628 A.D. The Mary Rose gave 33 years of service before it sank, so I would not call that one a design failure. But the Vasa sank on her maiden voyage, definitely a design failure. The shipwrights added an extra gun deck for the 72 large brass cannons on the ship, which made it too tall and too topheavy. The captain and vice admiral noticed that it was topheavy from observing it in dock, but launched it anyways because the project was ordered by the king and the vice admiral did not want to disappoint the king. (Wikipedia link)

The Mary Rose spent most of her service life in reserve (over twenty two years) and sank almost instantly in battle after refit, so whatever shipwright oversaw the refits obviously made some grievous error in the re-design.

As for the Vasa, the captain and vice admiral might have known, but the shipwrights who designed her clearly did not. And she's not some monster ship either, btw, a moderately-sized first rate like the HMS Victory is about three times the displacement and has three gun decks (her Spanish equivalent had four gundecks and four times the displacement of Vasa).

The shipwrights from the Vasa's era (and earlier) could not calculate these variables and would have to go with gut feelings. They knew that a ship had to be heavier at the bottom or it would roll over (like, duh), but the amounts were basically guesses..and sometimes wrong.

Similar thingies happen with modern ships, btw, but that's more my husband's area of expertise. It's usually not as severe since the mechanics are better understood in modern times, but you still end up with ships that are awash in heavy seas or have violent (but stable) rolling parameters.

For more "everybody knows" stuff, try checking some of them like.. "everybody knows you need to drink 8 glasses of water a day".

So um, is it ironic that the faultiness of common knowledge isn't commonly known? O.o

About the wands - Yes, characters might very well just get the CLW wand because it's cheaper. And discover after a CMW wand or two, that the CMW wand is junk due to the cost. "We seem to be burning through money much faster now, and not getting much more healing. Let's switch back to the cheap wand."

graystone wrote:

To you maybe but NOT to me. Too many abilities rely on HP for the character to have NO clue what they are or how they work. For instance, read Blood Reader: "While able to see a studied target, a slayer with this talent knows exactly how many hit points his opponent has remaining. This only works against living targets." The slayer LITERALLY knows the EXACT number of HP... It's 0% meta... People IN GAME can KNOW your EXACT hp total... They CAN SEE how much a healing spell can cure... They CAN DO SIMPLE MATH to figure out how much a charge cost/hp cured IN GAME WITHOUT meta...

So IMO, the only thing that is clear is how incorrect your claim of meta is...

Yes, a badly written thing in a Player's Companion totally overturns literally decades of experience and established practice. Not. Especially when it never explicitly states that it's character knowledge.

Pathfinder sometimes lacks clarity on that, prolly because of word count/page number limitations. Like for example:

CRB wrote:
A cleric may channel energy a number of times per day equal to 3 + her Charisma modifier.

OMG THE CLERIC TOTALLY KNOWS HER CHARISMA MODIFIER!!! >.<

No... no, calm down, the cleric only knows she can do it 5 times a day. She doesn't know that having a 14 or 15 charisma (or even that she has that amount of charisma) gives her a +2 bonus. She might know that having a certain 'force of personality' makes her able to do it more, and that putting on that weird enchanted circlet lets her do it one more time/day, or that weird curse reduced it to only 3 times/day, but she doesn't literally see her own character sheet. Only the player does.

Well, in the default setting/paradigm. You can always houserule/homebrew a system where the characters are innately knowledgeable about the exactly mechanics of their world, and sit around a table in a tavern discussing how dumping their charisma let them add two points to dex or how it's lame that crossbows only do 1d8 damage or whatever.

Wikipedia wrote:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metagaming_(role-playing_games)

Metagaming is a term used in role-playing games, which describes a player's use of real-life knowledge concerning the state of the game to determine their character's actions, when said character has no relevant knowledge or awareness under the circumstances. This can refer to plot information in the game such as secrets or events occurring away from the character, as well as facets of the game's mechanics such as abstract statistics or the precise limits of abilities.

You understand that the world of D&D and Pathfinder is supposed to be exactly like our very own, only with magical thingies added. The player knows that their character is down to 12 of 44 hit points, but the character themselves only knows that they're bruised, battered, wounded and getting close to death. "I'm very badly injured!" they might think or say. They don't think, "I have only 12 hit points left!".

There's even been pushes from time to time to move the crunchy stuff to the DM. It usually fails, but not because of love for meta, but because that would be an impossible workload for the DM.

Nethys, 'Elder God' wrote:
Suppose you have an attack that deals the minimum amount of harm required to be damaging to all creature types (i.e 1 point of lethal). If you repeatedly hit a creature with said attack (assume you have a way of detecting if a critical occurs, such as crit feats that apply non-damaging conditions) until it gains the disabled condition, you know the total hit points of your target. Any healing that brings them from 0 to full must be at or greater than their total hit points. You can then run as many trials as you would like to determine the probability that any given use of a healing effect produces this result.

You're basically underlining the limitations of the simulation. Hit points are presented as small integers as it's easy for peoples to understand and work in paper and pencil. That sounds exactly like that electron experiment thingie though. Very scientific, nicely empirical...but still meta. Does the character know of the delta chi square test method? O.o

Btw, even if you did have such a setup, it's unlikely that someone who went through all those troubles would offer this advice for free. There's a thingy called a 'trade secret'...

Sweet wispies, the thread got moved out of playtest. I wonder if it will eventually end in some 'off topic' forum.


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There's a reason I posted the experiment under the "insane deity of magic" alias. If anybody would figure this out, it'd be the guy who attained godhood by way of attaining onmiscience.


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Don't forget that there are spells like "Ask A God"
Like I imagine just like our middle ages there are people doing science. And the structure of their world is a lot more advanced meaning they are doing real science not fake science.

Like sure people in the moment that are experts might make suboptimal calls, but the fact THAT YOU know that they don't always make the correct call means that we humans in our world have managed to nail down the science enough to know what is the correct call. And all it took was what? Some science people and data and people that cared about it.


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Kerrilyn wrote:
No... no, calm down, the cleric only knows she can do it 5 times a day. She doesn't know that having a 14 or 15 charisma (or even that she has that amount of charisma) gives her a +2 bonus. She might know that having a certain 'force of personality' makes her able to do it more, and that putting on that weird enchanted circlet lets her do it one more time/day, or that weird curse reduced it to only 3 times/day, but she doesn't literally see her own character sheet.

In theory, characters could learn a lot about the logic underlying their world:

Cleric: "This type of headband, the sort that makes me more charismatic, allows me to channel healing energy one more time per day. Do you get that with yours?"
Life Oracle: "Yes. It also allows me to cast an extra spell per day."
Cleric: "Really? It doesn't do that for me. I have to use a different headband for that. It seems like there might be a way to get an objective measure of how wise someone is if they have cleric spellcasting abilities, in much the same way you can measure someone's Caster Level."
Life Oracle: "What's that?"
Cleric: "For example, if I cast a Light spell, it lasts for exactly six minutes. I believe that means I have a Caster Level of 6. You see, as I've grown stronger, the duration has increased in strict one minute chunks, and I gained the ability to cast more powerful spells the same time as it went up to three and five minutes..."
Fighter: "Have you ever noticed that it's very hard to stand in the exact middle of this ten foot by ten foot room? I can only comfortably stand in the four corner points. What's that all about?"

But I think it's best not to look at these things too closely.


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Kerrilyn: In pathfinder, it's possible to detect someone's level, hp's, class, feats, ki pool, grit pool, ect... It's not meta when you can get an in game source for it. Add to that the fact that people with IQ's FAR outstripping 'real life' are wandering around and I really don't see an argument for the game's characters to be ignorant of the basic facts of pathfinder life. SOMEONE has to have figured out that a 9' fall is safe while a 10' one isn't, even if that experiment requires a few orphan peasants to figure out. I just don't see pathfinder characters as 'dumb' as you seem to think they are.


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It's not seeing them as "dumb," it's verisimilitude. If a trained brain surgeon with a patient hooked up to all kinds of monitors in an operating theater doesn't know their patient's "hit points," a warrior in a frantic battle certainly isn't going to know it either.

Again, I think it's pretty fair for an experienced warrior to have a pretty good guess of how healthy or beat up an opponent is. In general terms. But it really doesn't make sense for them to be able to look at the enemy's stat sheet and know their HP, Charisma mod, level, save DCs and so on. When you hit someone, numbers don't float over their head for the damage amount like in Final Fantasy. That's stuff that meta abilities may give to the player to represent a character having particularly good intuition and battlefield perceptive awareness, but they're not going to know "game numbers."


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Kain Dragonhand wrote:

The scimitar will outclass the greatsword. Not at first, but at the point where you're threatening on 15-20 (or 30% of the time) and you start tacking on critical feats which are fairly substantial. Because trading a small variable % on the dice for things like bleeding, blindness, etc. is much more valuable than pure damage.

Also with the Scimitar you have the option to use it one handed and pick up a shield. That kind of versatility will give you more options with your character.

graystone said, "does more damage," so I had not factored in feats which add a condition or the versatility of a one-handed weapon. (My bloodrager uses a longsword for that versatility.) However, though graystone did not mention Improved Critical, that is so obvious I should have thought of it myself. My campaign has a magus, and if the spell warrior skald does not make his blackblade rapier keen with his weapon song, then the first words out of the magus are, "I make my blade keen."

Thank you for pointing that out.

Kain Dragonhand wrote:
And to your non-math explanation, improved crit throws that out the window.

No, it doesn't. I just have to adjust the explanation to correct my oversight, so that instead of the scimitar have an advantage on a nat 18 alone, it has an advantage of a nat 15 or 16. That is twice as good and the requirement for the static bonus drops from 73.5 down to 38.5. That is possible, with Power Attack at -6/+18, +5 enhancement on the weapon, +4 from a bard song, and Strength 26. But with a static bonus of 39, having average damage of 55.25 on a scimitar versus average damage of 55.20 on a greatsword is trivial.

That is what I intended for my original argument. A 0.1% difference is a immensely harder to notice than twice as good or six times as good. graystone chose a weak example.

Kerrilyn further supports her argument well, but I still feel it is the wrong argument. We are talking about whether characters can observe the exact different between Cure Light Wounds and Cure Moderate Wounds, but mistakes made in design or refitting are bad theory rather than bad observation.

Kain Dragonhand wrote:
If you need an 11 or higher (50%) to hit and both users have the feat, the Scimitar is critting 50% of all hits. Where the greatsword is critting only 20% of all hits.

A greatsword has a crit range of 19-20 compared the scimitar's range of 18-20, so if the scimitar is critting 50% of all hits, then the greatsword is critting on 33% of all hits.

Sorry about being pedantic.


Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

What I liked in Rise of the Runelords was how the "Magic Shop" is written in Sandpoint. It's a crazy collector. So my players never actually bought an item there. They traded the ones they found with new ones he had. They never had 20 wands on them. They couldn't.

Silver Crusade

Mathmuse wrote:
Kain Dragonhand wrote:

The scimitar will outclass the greatsword. Not at first, but at the point where you're threatening on 15-20 (or 30% of the time) and you start tacking on critical feats which are fairly substantial. Because trading a small variable % on the dice for things like bleeding, blindness, etc. is much more valuable than pure damage.

Also with the Scimitar you have the option to use it one handed and pick up a shield. That kind of versatility will give you more options with your character.

graystone said, "does more damage," so I had not factored in feats which add a condition or the versatility of a one-handed weapon. (My bloodrager uses a longsword for that versatility.) However, though graystone did not mention Improved Critical, that is so obvious I should have thought of it myself. My campaign has a magus, and if the spell warrior skald does not make his blackblade rapier keen with his weapon song, then the first words out of the magus are, "I make my blade keen."

Thank you for pointing that out.

Kain Dragonhand wrote:
And to your non-math explanation, improved crit throws that out the window.

No, it doesn't. I just have to adjust the explanation to correct my oversight, so that instead of the scimitar have an advantage on a nat 18 alone, it has an advantage of a nat 15 or 16. That is twice as good and the requirement for the static bonus drops from 73.5 down to 38.5. That is possible, with Power Attack at -6/+18, +5 enhancement on the weapon, +4 from a bard song, and Strength 26. But with a static bonus of 39, having average damage of 55.25 on a scimitar versus average damage of 55.20 on a greatsword is trivial.

That is what I intended for my original argument. A 0.1% difference is a immensely harder to notice than twice as good or six times as good. graystone chose a weak example.

Kerrilyn further supports her argument well, but I still feel it is the wrong argument. We are talking about whether characters can observe the exact different between...

Yes, but it still remains that the critical feats are very good and the ability to add status effects on top of damage trumps straight damage, does it not?

There's also the versatility issue, you can use the Scimitar one or two-handed, not just two handed. Leaving a hand free to grab a potion or multitude of other items.

It's not all about the damage really, and the increased crit chance will make much more of a difference in the long run.

Anyways, good talk, but I'm finished de-railing this topic.


I question why DMs give out 50 charge wands like they are candy. I'm not even talking from a balance but a story side.

Mage makes a wand, goes to sell it. Buyer will want to test it out espically if they don't detect magic or spellcraft it. So it's now 49 charges. Possible repeat until someone buys it or the wizard says no more testing. And if the buyer is a traveler, then said wand is probably going to see some use before their death or the sell of the wand.

This doesn't sound too extreme does it?


Angel Hunter D wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
What even is this conversation anymore?

a brawl between 4 camps

camp 1 enjoys the game as is, sees it as it's own genre of fantasy.

camp 2 wants to be in middle earth and get hurt and heal as much as frodo did, they see the CLW wand as an affront.

camp 3 thinks the low level item being the best healing by price is weird, and should be "fixed"

camp 4 thinks that the CLW wand is a symptom of a damage/healing system that has fundamental flaws and no good way to make the narrative and game flow in a way that appeals to everyone.

then there are people in each camp that can't agree on whether or not CR assumes you are always healed up (though in PFS I've usually seen not topping off as inviting death, or at least making my job as a team mate harder because your dirt nap is coming early)

every camp seems to be bringing more and weirder examples along as this circles like that thing in Abendengo.

There's a 5th camp.

But we're pretty quiet, content to read this stuff & just shake our heads. We believe that if your group is having problems with _______, then it's your own fault/your DMs fault.
Because there's all kinds of things you can do in these games. All kinds of ways to play. Just because you CAN do something though =/= you must do that.
Now I know, some of you will respond that you play in the PFS. Well, once again, your own fault. You've chosen to play in a game that's not your own. Where you don't get a say in the options.


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MerlinCross wrote:

I question why DMs give out 50 charge wands like they are candy. I'm not even talking from a balance but a story side.

Mage makes a wand, goes to sell it. Buyer will want to test it out espically if they don't detect magic or spellcraft it. So it's now 49 charges. Possible repeat until someone buys it or the wizard says no more testing. And if the buyer is a traveler, then said wand is probably going to see some use before their death or the sell of the wand.

This doesn't sound too extreme does it?

Do your shopkeepers let potential buyers test out scrolls and potions too?

What usually happens is the GM says, "You can buy anything with a value of up to 4,000gp in this settlement, so make sure you do your shopping before next week."

The players then decide what equipment they want, cross off some gold, and update their character sheets appropriately.

Then the table doesn't have to waste any time shopping when they could be adventuring.


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MerlinCross wrote:

Mage makes a wand, goes to sell it. Buyer will want to test it out espically if they don't detect magic or spellcraft it. So it's now 49 charges. Possible repeat until someone buys it or the wizard says no more testing. And if the buyer is a traveler, then said wand is probably going to see some use before their death or the sell of the wand.

If I were the shopkeeper and some mouthbreather was asking to test out my consumables I'd tell him to either ID it himself or to get the hell out of my store. I'm not going to throw free potion samples at people who don't trust my wares, wands shouldn't be any different. He can get the guards if it turns out I swindled him.


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Fuzzypaws wrote:
It's not seeing them as "dumb," it's verisimilitude. If a trained brain surgeon with a patient hooked up to all kinds of monitors in an operating theater doesn't know their patient's "hit points," a warrior in a frantic battle certainly isn't going to know it either.

There are things like a Emergency Severity Index (ESI) that is much like hp, explaining which people are more or less injured. So I disagree unless you are stuck on the 'name' hp.

SO IMO verisimilitude isn't an issue: abilities/spells can GIVE you exact info like hp totals, feats, ki points, class, ect so WHY is it anti-verisimilitude when it's available info?

Fuzzypaws wrote:
Again, I think it's pretty fair for an experienced warrior to have a pretty good guess of how healthy or beat up an opponent is. In general terms. But it really doesn't make sense for them to be able to look at the enemy's stat sheet and know their HP, Charisma mod, level, save DCs and so on.

They might not know exact numbers but they are available with the right ability or spell. Even if they don't think of it in number terms, is thinking of it as 'I could take x number of hits from that sword' significantly different? IMO it's more an issue with terms used.

Fuzzypaws wrote:
When you hit someone, numbers don't float over their head for the damage amount like in Final Fantasy. That's stuff that meta abilities may give to the player to represent a character having particularly good intuition and battlefield perceptive awareness, but they're not going to know "game numbers."

Some abilities DO exactly that. Abilities that tell exact number of hp, tall class, ki points, grit ect. WHY the angst over calling them what they are? It just seems silly to dance around a name when I can get an ability that explicitly GIVE you that info by that name. Would it be better if it's called health? vitality? What is SO immersion breaking about fantasy characters talking about fantasy abilities with fantasy terms?


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Knowledge checks for feats:
Spymaster's handbook wrote:

Check: You can attempt a skill check to identify a feat or class feature when you observe it in use, similar to how Spellcraft can be used to identify a spell. The feat or class feature must have some observable effect in order for you to attempt the Knowledge check. For example, you can’t see the internal determination of Iron Will, so this ability can’t identify that feat. In general, if a feat or class feature creates a noticeable effect (such as the extra attack from using Cleave) or has a variable modifier a character must choose to use (such as Arcane Strike, Combat Expertise, or Enlarge Spell), it can be identified. If it creates a static bonus (such as Dodge or Lightning Reflexes), there’s no telltale sign to give it away.

The Knowledge skill required to identify a feat or class feature varies depending on the type of feat or class feature to be identified and is outlined in the Recall Intrigues (Knowledge) table above, along with the DCs of such skill checks.

Of course, passives can be determined with other experiments and/or knowledge of prerequesites.

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If it's a comedy campaign, sure, or you want to play Deadpool with "fourth wall break" powers. In a more grounded campaign a Divination specialist wizard, or a Clairsentience / Telepathy psion, might make some sort of sense. Otherwise, characters just aren't going to have the frame of reference to think of things in this way. You literally never see this in fiction of any kind unless it's either a self-referential comedy, a sci-fi tale where computers and scanners are feeding metrics to someone's visor / implants, or it's someone with crazy mentalism powers like Sherlock Holmes. It just doesn't really fit the mood of almost anyone or anything else.


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Claxon wrote:
How is it unintended? It's an obvious consequence of the rules.

It is obvious in hindsight. But look at the 3.0 or 3.5 DMG (which Pathfinder is based on). Their adventure building guidelines boil down to "4 encounters make for a decent day of adventuring both in real life and in game, and each should wear the party down enough so that the last encounter is actually dangerous."

The Wand of CLW breaks that paradigm. I think it's fairly clear that whoever wrote the guidelines for adventure construction didn't consider the easy exploit of cheap healing allowed by the item creation rules. Essentially, the wand of CLW is the rocket-jump of Pathfinder/D&D 3.

That said, now that I think about it some more, the wand of CLW is mostly the most visible and useful example of the problems caused by 3e's lax-but-regulated item creation rules. 3e (and its variants) is the only version of D&D that has allowed spellcasters (particularly wizards) to easily and relatively cheaply expand on their daily spells by creating items in a mechanistic fashion (spend X gp, X/500 days, and (not in PF) X/12.5 XP: get the item you want). Well, 4e also makes item creation easy, but it doesn't allow items to significantly increase your "adventuring endurance". But AD&D made item creation pretty darn difficult - you needed to be much higher level, you needed a significant investment in a base where you could enchant stuff, you probably needed to research specific item creation methods, and you needed exotic ingredients and/or procedures.

Quote:
And just because you enter a combat a full health doesn't make it easy. Like I mentioned, the melee character is my groups will typically be at 50% or less of their total health after each combat. If they didn't have CLW wands the party would get about 2 combats a day and decide to stop. That's also bad design.

That's the other side effect of CLW wands: they drive up the stakes. Since the wands are a matter of fact in 3e-based games, players often feel things are too much of a cake-walk with the "correct" encounters. So GMs and adventure writers make harder encounters to provide more of a challenge, thus rewarding "nova" classes over "slow burn" classes.

For example, look at the finale of part 2 of Curse of the Crimson Throne. At that point, the PCs are supposed to be 7th level, and the dungeon has encounters of CR: 8, 6, 9, 8, 8, 14 (not intended for combat), 9, 9, and 8. Now, I haven't examined the dungeon in detail so it might be that you're not likely to fight all of these, but it's a lot more than you might expect using the 3e guidelines. That'd be more like 7, 5, 5, 7, 8 or 9.


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We have considered Wands of Cure Light Wounds from the players' point of view and from the characters' point of view. But what about from the designers' point of view?

What I love most about Pathfinder is the ability to create customized characters. A gnome ranger who left Sanos Forest to explore Varisia. A alchemist wanting to prove that the new science of alchemy is just as good, if not better, than the old magic of wizards. A barbarian who rages against the storm and proves she can survive anything. A oracle from an orphanage seeking her lost heritage. A bloodrager who was studying to be a wizard just like her father but picked up an ax and joined her friends to save him.

People on this forum over the years have complained about mandatory feats and mandatory magic items, such as the Big Six or a monk's Amulet of Might Fists. I believe the Paizo designers view mandatory items as interferring with the marvelous customization of Pathfinder. They want to fix this for Pathfinder Second Edition.

If every party without a cleric thinks they must buy a Wand of Cure Light Wounds, then it is a mandatory item.

Scarab Sages

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Mathmuse, you beautiful thing. Finally, an anti-wand opinion that goes beyond "your having fun wrong" and relates to design goals. That makes perfect sense, I just hope there is enough healing in the new system to keep it feeling like pathfinder.


Matthew Downie wrote:


Do your shopkeepers let potential buyers test out scrolls and potions too?

What usually happens is the GM says, "You can buy anything with a value of up to 4,000gp in this settlement, so make sure you do your shopping before next week."

The players then decide what equipment they want, cross off some gold, and update their character sheets appropriately.

Then the table doesn't have to waste any time shopping when they could be adventuring.

Id cut it down to the key part but Mobile.

To me the difference is you can see a scroll and a potion no problem. They also aren't reusable unlike a wand. Besides testing or checking it sounds like a good idea, cause for all anyone knows it's a stick.

Again I don't think this is an extreme solution.


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Staffan Johansson wrote:
It is obvious in hindsight. But look at the 3.0 or 3.5 DMG (which Pathfinder is based on). Their adventure building guidelines boil down to "4 encounters make for a decent day of adventuring both in real life and in game, and each should wear the party down enough so that the last encounter is actually dangerous."

It only breaks that paradigm if the party are very cautious. Normally, despite wands, the casters will burn through their best spells over the first four encounters, and then the party wants to rest because it's dangerous to continue without spells, even if the martials have infinite healing. A party with wands can on average continue longer than one without wands, but you could say the same about a party with a positive-channelling cleric compared to one without.

Also, it's worth noting that the rest of the rules do little to create that paradigm in the first place. The barbarian gets more rage every level. The bard gets more performance rounds every level. The casters get lower level spells (like Haste) that remain useful as they level up, and they get higher level spells too. The battles don't (as far as I can tell) last any longer, so the party can probably handle more of them. So are we supposed to increase the encounters per day as we level up? Or is the game supposed to get easier?


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MerlinCross wrote:
To me the difference is you can see a scroll and a potion no problem. They also aren't reusable unlike a wand. Besides testing or checking it sounds like a good idea, cause for all anyone knows it's a stick.

For all anyone knows, that potion of healing is colored water.

Shopkeeper: "That's a wand of Cure Light Wounds with 49 charges. It will cost you 735gp"
Patron: "May I test this wand before buying it?"
Shopkeeper: "Certainly, for 15gp. I will deduct this from the price of the wand."
Patron: "Wait... even if I test it, how am I supposed to know if it's really got as many charges left as you claim?"
Shopkeeper: "Have you tried Detect Magic and a DC17 Spellcraft check?"


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Staffan Johansson wrote:
Claxon wrote:
How is it unintended? It's an obvious consequence of the rules.
It is obvious in hindsight. But look at the 3.0 or 3.5 DMG (which Pathfinder is based on). Their adventure building guidelines boil down to "4 encounters make for a decent day of adventuring both in real life and in game, and each should wear the party down enough so that the last encounter is actually dangerous."

The thing is, that you can still have this. Just because you can enter your 4th combat at full health, doesn't mean it wont be challenging or not dangerous. In theory you've used up 3/4 of your daily resources of everything but HP. By the end of the fight you can be struggling to take down the enemy because you don't have anymore spells, or rounds or rage, or other daily resources. And that can be accomplished by retooling the CR scale.

But the problem is that the classes that have it worst are classes like the fighter, rogue, and monk which don't really have a lot of daily resources to manage but rely mostly on only their HP. And while a caster can fight another day if they run out of everything but 0 level spells, a fighter who runs out of HP is dead (or at least unconscious) which isn't a very fun way to play the game. If every day you get knocked out after 4 combats it's not fun. It's predictable and it sucks, because you wont feel like you're getting any stronger.

In my opinion the way goal should be to exhaust a party's daily reusable resources without killing anyone. Now, no one is perfect so getting that right every time is hard, but taking away plentiful healing means the party never pushes on. The party turtles up because the fighter needs to rest, and the cleric needs to rest to regain spells to heal the fighter (whom has far more damage than one night of rest can handle). It just makes the game unfun, and I find the whole premise to be the opposite of what I want in the game. With the wand of CLW, it wasn't an issue. For groups that didn't like it, they could ban the wands. But now I'm having it forced on me without an easy fix.


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Mathmuse wrote:

We have considered Wands of Cure Light Wounds from the players' point of view and from the characters' point of view. But what about from the designers' point of view?

What I love most about Pathfinder is the ability to create customized characters. A gnome ranger who left Sanos Forest to explore Varisia. A alchemist wanting to prove that the new science of alchemy is just as good, if not better, than the old magic of wizards. A barbarian who rages against the storm and proves she can survive anything. A oracle from an orphanage seeking her lost heritage. A bloodrager who was studying to be a wizard just like her father but picked up an ax and joined her friends to save him.

People on this forum over the years have complained about mandatory feats and mandatory magic items, such as the Big Six or a monk's Amulet of Might Fists. I believe the Paizo designers view mandatory items as interferring with the marvelous customization of Pathfinder. They want to fix this for Pathfinder Second Edition.

If every party without a cleric thinks they must buy a Wand of Cure Light Wounds, then it is a mandatory item.

You know what what is vastly OP? Trail rations! All these spoiled players these days expect to go into every fight with a full stomach. Back in my day, you were so hungry by the end of the adventuring day you would pray for a PC death just so you could cannibalize the corpse!

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Claxon wrote:
... but now I’m having it forced on me without an easy fix.

You don’t know what healing looks like or how it works in the new edition.


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Mathmuse wrote:
If every party without a cleric thinks they must buy a Wand of Cure Light Wounds, then it is a mandatory item.

Right now, the only keeping the sky from falling are the dev words that a dedicate healer is not needed.

Because the party having to split the cost of wands is thousands and thousands of times better than having someone be forced to spec into healing.

Simply put, better to have wands forever and ever doing what they are doing in PF1, than have people be forced to go into healing or play 15 mins daily adventures.

Again, we were assured this wont happen, lets see how well it goes into play, if this is a problem, im sure it will be called out quite loudly quite fast.


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RumpinRufus wrote:
You know what what is vastly OP? Trail rations! All these spoiled players these days expect to go into every fight with a full stomach. Back in my day, you were so hungry by the end of the adventuring day you would pray for a PC death just so you could cannibalize the corpse!

Yeah, the PCs are getting soft. In my Jade Regent campaign, when the party crossed the northern ice cap, they brought along a gnome chef to cook up the monsters they killed (truly, he was a passenger learning the recipes of the world). And if no monsters voluntarily attacked them, they sent out their martial characters to hunt winter wolves for food.

But in my more recent Iron Gods campaign, the characters stopped at inns every night. Softies! In the middle of a dungeon crawl beneath Scrapwall, they stopped for a picnic lunch with a chuul (the skald has a seriously awesome Diplomacy skill). And then they refurbished a wrecked spaceship and flew that mobile base with a fully stocked larder and a high-tech kitchen.


Matthew Downie wrote:
MerlinCross wrote:
To me the difference is you can see a scroll and a potion no problem. They also aren't reusable unlike a wand. Besides testing or checking it sounds like a good idea, cause for all anyone knows it's a stick.

For all anyone knows, that potion of healing is colored water.

Shopkeeper: "That's a wand of Cure Light Wounds with 49 charges. It will cost you 735gp"
Patron: "May I test this wand before buying it?"
Shopkeeper: "Certainly, for 15gp. I will deduct this from the price of the wand."
Patron: "Wait... even if I test it, how am I supposed to know if it's really got as many charges left as you claim?"
Shopkeeper: "Have you tried Detect Magic and a DC17 Spellcraft check?"

I mean we can do that if Healing is such a problem.

I also see no reason to NOT do the second one. Mainly because I'm a sucker for interaction and RPing. I also do this with normal items depending on the phrasing. "I look for the cheapest arrows". Okay, here's lumber jack bob that widdles arrows as a side hobby.

Mind you I would suggest a Perception roll and then maybe suggesting you take your bussniess elsewhere. But this is me with some cheapskate players at times.

Anyway this is just a matter of RPing. I'll note I'm against trying to CON the players like this unless they are asking for it, and if they ask about how many charges a Wand has left I'd take that as a case by case basis(Who's the seller, where they are, etc etc). Much like I'd take the price into account. I know it's quicker and gets back to the adventure but I dislike the "Beep, insert X amount of gold. Thank you, here is item Y. Have a nice day". Supposed to be shop keeps not vending machines.

But this is moving away from the main topic. On that note, while they seemed to have 'fixed' this 'problem' in 2e, I feel those that dislike CLW wand spam due to it taking away threat are going to still have to deal with that. It's just Heal spam now. Or a mix of spam. I haven't seen anything yet that makes me believe parties aren't going to take the easiest and most optimized route(because on the forums, everything is about being optimized).


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Given the choice of 'easy and optimal' and 'inconvenient and inefficient', most people will choose the former...

I hope whatever healing system they use doesn't feel spammy. Imagine two YouTube/podcast RPG sessions. (This sort of thing is going to be increasingly important publicity from now on.) In one, after a high level battle, the players heal up in d8+1 chunks, crossing off wand charges as they go. In the other, the players say, "We use our once-a-day ten minute rest," and they regain 50% of max HP.

The latter makes the game seem more entertaining, because it improves the ratio of fun to tedious bookkeeping.


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As long as the easy button doesn't expect like 20 encounters a day by design, it should be ok. Honestly, the only table I care about is my own.

Grand Lodge

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Currently there is a point at which characters will not waste healing wands to cure the last 1-4 hit points as it being not cost effective even with wands.

First option system would be that there is a effective healing of spells based on characters percent hit points.

Another way to change the effective cost point break is to reduce the effective healing received from healing.

For example if you are more than 50% injured all healing from items would be fully effective, but if you are less than 50% injured all healing from items is less effective by half.

low level with 20 hit points max would receive 1d8+1 healing for each use until they exceed there 10 hit total, after that it would be half per healing. They might get luckily and go from 9hps to 18pt on one charge or unlucky 9hp to 11hp. (The effective healing drops from 5.5 per charge to 2.25 per charge.)

A high level with 100 Hit points would have a halfway point of 50hp.
using a wand of clw would take about 10 charges to get to 55hp. it would take 20 charges to heal fully.

A second option system would be that there is a max hp limit to the cure spell level.

CLW would heal at 100% effectiveness up to 10 hp, then 50% effectiveness to 20hp, zero healing over that.

CmW would heal at 100% effectiveness up to 20 hp, then 50% effectiveness to 40hp, zero healing over that.

CSW would heal at 100% effectiveness up to 30 hp, then 50% effectiveness to 60hp, zero healing over that.

CCW would heal at 100% effectiveness up to 40 hp, then 50% effectiveness to 80hp, zero healing over that.

Heal would heal 100% rate no limit.

(Another option instead of spell level the effective rates are tied to caster level CL x 10hp for 100% rate, CL x 20hp for 50% rate. a clw wand is CL 1, potion CMW is CL3 ...)


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GM Glyn wrote:

Currently there is a point at which characters will not waste healing wands to cure the last 1-4 hit points as it being not cost effective even with wands.

First option system would be that there is a effective healing of spells based on characters percent hit points.

Another way to change the effective cost point break is to reduce the effective healing received from healing.

For example if you are more than 50% injured all healing from items would be fully effective, but if you are less than 50% injured all healing from items is less effective by half.

low level with 20 hit points max would receive 1d8+1 healing for each use until they exceed there 10 hit total, after that it would be half per healing. They might get luckily and go from 9hps to 18pt on one charge or unlucky 9hp to 11hp. (The effective healing drops from 5.5 per charge to 2.25 per charge.)

A high level with 100 Hit points would have a halfway point of 50hp.
using a wand of clw would take about 10 charges to get to 55hp. it would take 20 charges to heal fully.

A second option system would be that there is a max hp limit to the cure spell level.

CLW would heal at 100% effectiveness up to 10 hp, then 50% effectiveness to 20hp, zero healing over that.

CmW would heal at 100% effectiveness up to 20 hp, then 50% effectiveness to 40hp, zero healing over that.

CSW would heal at 100% effectiveness up to 30 hp, then 50% effectiveness to 60hp, zero healing over that.

CCW would heal at 100% effectiveness up to 40 hp, then 50% effectiveness to 80hp, zero healing over that.

Heal would heal 100% rate no limit.

(Another option instead of spell level the effective rates are tied to caster level CL x 10hp for 100% rate, CL x 20hp for 50% rate. a clw wand is CL 1, potion CMW is CL3 ...)

Wait, that is pretty brilliant.

Cure slight (orison) -> restore character to 0 hp.
Cure light -> full hp restoration up to 10 hp.
Cure mod -> full hp restoration up to 25 hp.
Cure serious -> full hp restoration up to 40 hp.
Cure critical -> full hp restoration up to 75 hp.
Cure 5th level -> full hp restoration up to 125.
Heal -> As printed now.

Adjust those numbers as appropriate. I just spit balled them.

I like this a bunch.


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One of the problems of healing with spells (and why wands became so popular) is because clerics didn't have enough spell slot to keep the group going with how poorly healing spells could heal compared to damage characters would regularly take.

If a healing spell could heal 25% of a level appropriate characters HP, then it's not as bad a proposition. But it still means someone has to play a healer, instead of being able to prepare spells that are "fun" for the player (assuming they don't want to be a band-aid).

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