Stop the 1 Level Class Dip


Prerelease Discussion

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I multiclass not necessarily because I'm min-maxing, but because I enjoy the creative combinations of abilities that I can put together, and because I think of single-classing as somewhat boring at times.

With that said, I don't enjoy being accused of min-maxing for the sake of it, so I'm not opposed to making single-classing more appealing, as long as multi-classing remains a viable option. I think that's the way to go here - make it less common by making the higher levels more interesting, more attractive. But don't take away my fun just because you don't like multiclassing as an idea, I already have to argue with my GM enough about that.


kyrt-ryder wrote:
Quentin Coldwater wrote:
Dasrak wrote:
Why is dipping a bad thing? Your new level 1 ability never improves, and your main class abilities are slowed by a level.
Except that you can still boost those first-level powers. There are a lot of feats or items that grant extra rage rounds or boosts to certain powers. Dipping one level of Barbarian and the Extra Rage class feature allows you to rage for 10+ rounds a day, enough for 2 or 3 combats. Yeah, Rage doesn't turn into Greater Rage, but that +4 is already a lot. Swashbuckler dips get free Weapon Finesse, skips some prerequisites, gets some Panache and deeds, and so on. There's a lot of reasons why one level of something else can really boost your effectiveness, especially if you're not a caster-type.
Remind us why you care?

Ultimately people can do what they want at their tables, but there's several good reasons for having a solid multiclassing system out of the box that isn't brokenly good or brokenly bad.

  • New GMS and new players. A new GM may have trouble coping with a minmaxxed monster. On the flipside, new players who want to multiclass for the flavor of it or because something looks fun shouldn't get stuck with something crappy and underpowered because they don't know how to pick optimized options.
  • Table jealousy and combat balance. Even with more experienced players, it isn't always fun when one player totally outshines and outperforms everyone else at the table. People start feeling useless... and if the GM has to throw beefed up threats at the group to cope with the super-character, that can be deadly to everyone else.
  • Organized play like Pathfinder Society. This is the above point on steroids, pretty much. The GM has less flexibility to adjust stuff, because they're stuck playing out of modules. Players will definitely NOT be happy with someone breaking the game at their table.

Multiclassing done right can actually add a ton of flavor to characters and to the game. I'd like to see multiclassing as a good option, one that can really add to the mix.


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Ultimately, "powergaming" and "min/maxing" is a social issue. It's not a good idea to completely water down a game and remove flexibility to cater for that.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Quentin Coldwater wrote:
Except that you can still boost those first-level powers. There are a lot of feats or items that grant extra rage rounds or boosts to certain powers. Dipping one level of Barbarian and the Extra Rage class feature allows you to rage for 10+ rounds a day, enough for 2 or 3 combats. Yeah, Rage doesn't turn into Greater Rage, but that +4 is already a lot. Swashbuckler dips get free Weapon Finesse, skips some prerequisites, gets some Panache and deeds, and so on. There's a lot of reasons why one level of something else can really boost your effectiveness, especially if you're not a caster-type.

Yes, multiclassing can be good, and you can pick options that complement or enhance your multiclassing decisions. Again, why is this a bad thing? You're still making sacrifices to gain these benefits, and the result characters are comparable to single-class builds. Sometimes better, sometimes worse, depends on exactly which builds we're comparing.

Fuzzypaws wrote:
New GMS and new players. A new GM may have trouble coping with a minmaxxed monster.

There are plenty of single-class minmaxed monsters out there. Dipping is neither here nor there on that one. Yes, a lot of powerful builds do make use of dipping, but a lot of powerful builds don't multiclass either.

Silver Crusade

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A Ninja Errant wrote:
I admit I haven't played 4e, but I have read through the core book and their multiclassing system was a huge turn off for me.

The original multiclassing system was a feat-based dilettante 'dipping' option. The hybrid system was added later, and allowed you to make a character that was a fusion of two different classes (with some reduction of class features).


PCScipio wrote:
A Ninja Errant wrote:
I admit I haven't played 4e, but I have read through the core book and their multiclassing system was a huge turn off for me.
The original multiclassing system was a feat-based dilettante 'dipping' option. The hybrid system was added later, and allowed you to make a character that was a fusion of two different classes (with some reduction of class features).

Ah, I see. I'll have to read up on that then. My group pretty much gave up on 4e as soon as we read the PHB.


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Fuzzypaws wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:
Quentin Coldwater wrote:
There's a lot of reasons why one level of something else can really boost your effectiveness, especially if you're not a caster-type.
Remind us why you care?

Ultimately people can do what they want at their tables, but there's several good reasons for having a solid multiclassing system out of the box that isn't brokenly good or brokenly bad.

  • New GMS and new players. A new GM may have trouble coping with a minmaxxed monster. On the flipside, new players who want to multiclass for the flavor of it or because something looks fun shouldn't get stuck with something crappy and underpowered because they don't know how to pick optimized options.

I'm all for giving new GMs better tools and making it easier to obtain a thorough understanding of how to run a solid game.

That being said I've never seen this 'minmaxxed monster' that disrupts the game. And you're talking to someone who's GM'd for the absolute peak of 3.5's Pracitcal Optimization [no infinite loops, using the most logical reading of rules] with Uberchargers, Kings of Smack and all manner of incredible prowess produced with multiclassed characters operating towards a martial theme... and at no point did the game collapse or the full caster players become remotely jealous.

Quote:
  • Table jealousy and combat balance. Even with more experienced players, it isn't always fun when one player totally outshines and outperforms everyone else at the table. People start feeling useless... and if the GM has to throw beefed up threats at the group to cope with the super-character, that can be deadly to everyone else.
  • You mean like the time I played a templated Dwarf Rokugan Ninja with a starting Constitution of 26 with more hit points on a d6 hit die than the knight with his d12 and bad rolls? No, it looks like you mean when you have people who don't understand enough to build a powerful character getting outshone. This is not good, I agree, but we can either solve this with a social contract to play weak and easy [say lower the level the GM treats the party as by one] or with more experienced players guiding the new ones.

    Alternatively Paizo can build a more balanced game where everyone gets to be awesome at all levels.

    Quote:
  • Organized play like Pathfinder Society. This is the above point on steroids, pretty much. The GM has less flexibility to adjust stuff, because they're stuck playing out of modules. Players will definitely NOT be happy with someone breaking the game at their table.
  • Speaking as a GM, I don't adjust stuff. I might make stuff up now and then for fun and novelty, but I run by the guidelines in the rules. Don't ever throw more than CR+4 against the party unless it's a story event with very clear indicators of how to get out [and opportunity for vengeance later if desired] and an abundance of weaker encounters.

    Quote:
    Multiclassing done right can actually add a ton of flavor to characters and to the game. I'd like to see multiclassing as a good option, one that can really add to the mix.

    On this we agree.


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    Dasrak wrote:
    Quentin Coldwater wrote:
    Except that you can still boost those first-level powers. There are a lot of feats or items that grant extra rage rounds or boosts to certain powers. Dipping one level of Barbarian and the Extra Rage class feature allows you to rage for 10+ rounds a day, enough for 2 or 3 combats. Yeah, Rage doesn't turn into Greater Rage, but that +4 is already a lot. Swashbuckler dips get free Weapon Finesse, skips some prerequisites, gets some Panache and deeds, and so on. There's a lot of reasons why one level of something else can really boost your effectiveness, especially if you're not a caster-type.
    Yes, multiclassing can be good, and you can pick options that complement or enhance your multiclassing decisions. Again, why is this a bad thing? You're still making sacrifices to gain these benefits, and the result characters are comparable to single-class builds. Sometimes better, sometimes worse, depends on exactly which builds we're comparing.

    And this one:

    kyrt-ryder wrote:
    Quentin Coldwater wrote:
    Dasrak wrote:
    Why is dipping a bad thing? Your new level 1 ability never improves, and your main class abilities are slowed by a level.
    Except that you can still boost those first-level powers. There are a lot of feats or items that grant extra rage rounds or boosts to certain powers. Dipping one level of Barbarian and the Extra Rage class feature allows you to rage for 10+ rounds a day, enough for 2 or 3 combats. Yeah, Rage doesn't turn into Greater Rage, but that +4 is already a lot. Swashbuckler dips get free Weapon Finesse, skips some prerequisites, gets some Panache and deeds, and so on. There's a lot of reasons why one level of something else can really boost your effectiveness, especially if you're not a caster-type.
    Remind us why you care?

    Why should I care? Well, I mostly care because I play a lot of PFS, where I've seen some absolute bonkers builds, where people squeeze every last bonus into their character. I've seen one guy roflstomp several scenarios, basically soloing every encounter, with us merely as backup. Monk/Id Rager/Druid is a crazy powerful build. I might just be whining, but I've heard several people complain they feel useless next to these people. This is also partly an OOC problem, not an IC problem, as the player wants to dominate everything and show off, but it's indicative of the problem. If people want, they can break the game beyond what the system meant for the player to do. Multiclassing for more abilities is good, as long as the overall power level doesn't exceed its intended maximum. But it does, and for Society play, that can be a problem.

    I agree though that for non-Society play, this is less of an issue, where you as a GM can have more control over the power level of your players.


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    Can you tell us more about this 'Monk/Id Rager/Druid' build you encountered?

    Because it certainly does not sound overpowered to me.

    Granted at low levels it might be powerful, but I am struggling to envision it being overpowered.


    3E system mastery can cause a large gap in character effectiveness at the table. I blame uncapped stats mostly, but MC and prestige has definitely played a part. Paizo did a decent job of creating newer classes that eliminated a lot of the need for those shenanigans, while allowing robust customization of the 3E system.

    4E was so rigid when it came to MC. I know part of that was the class "role" design. The system couldn't let you play too much with it or you would end up outside the diamond they painted. I know Paizo is taking some of the same direction with their design. My hope is the PF2 system will be loose enough to allow interesting chargen and not throw the baby out with the bathwater like 4E. YMMV.


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    Planpanther wrote:
    3E system mastery can cause a large gap in character effectiveness at the table. I blame uncapped stats mostly, but MC and prestige has definitely played a part.

    To quote myself from just a few posts upthread:

    upthread Kyrt-Ryder wrote:
    I've never seen this 'minmaxxed monster' that disrupts the game. And you're talking to someone who's GM'd for the absolute peak of 3.5's Pracitcal Optimization [no infinite loops, using the most logical reading of rules] with Uberchargers, Kings of Smack and all manner of incredible prowess produced with multiclassed characters operating towards a martial theme... and at no point did the game collapse or the full caster players become remotely jealous.

    Now, single classed martials got jealous, but they got jealous of casters too. 3.X was not a game designed for martial characters, those were some of the timmy cards.

    I believe Pathfinder intended to fix the problem, they gave martials a few more tools/toys but there is a reason PF1 has a stigma in other parts of the Tabletop world as 'Caster Edition.'

    PF2 looks like to be making a better attempt to rectify that.


    Multiclassing was almost a must in 3.5, the game was so focused on PrC that it should've been remodeled to make the normal classes levels 1 to 10 and had their features compacted.

    Paizo did a really good job balancing the core classes so I never had any real need in multiclassing, except for rol play purposes.

    I am not against multiclassing, I am against 'powerhunting', and sometimes single classes can achieve the same result.


    kyrt-ryder wrote:

    Can you tell us more about this 'Monk/Id Rager/Druid' build you encountered?

    Because it certainly does not sound overpowered to me.

    Granted at low levels it might be powerful, but I am struggling to envision it being overpowered.

    I'm not 100% on the exact statistics, but it basically boils down to the following:

    Starting as Druid so he can be a large Earth Elemental pretty much all the time.
    Then going Monk for Flurry of Blows, Wisdom to AC, and a whole lot more.
    A few levels of Id Rager (maybe just one) to have his damage dice go up, and of course, all the bonuses Rage gives.

    Again, I'm not sure about the build, he obviously has a lot of magic items that boost him, but he has four or five attacks that each deal 60 static damage (including Power Attack), before damage dice are rolled. He has great saves and AC through Monk levels, Evasion, spells to buff himself, and so on. As a GM, he was frustrating to play for, because he had no weak point. Everything just died around him. This might just as much be a fault of the equipment as it is of multiclassing, but you see where I'm going with this. And this was for Society, where you go to level 11.


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    Nothing wrong with level dipping if it makes your character what you want it to be.


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    Multiclassing is already punished in PF since you won't be getting your favoured class bonus.

    But the reason people do it, is because non-casters usually only get numeric increases when they level. Add some actual fun level appropriate abilities / things they can do, and you'll see less dips.


    BretI wrote:
    I don’t have that notion. I believe it allows you to create characters that otherwise couldn’t be created. There is a difference between the two.

    That's fair enough, and I'll concede I overstated my case.

    Any form of multiclassing will allow you to create otherwise impossible characters. My problem with Pathfinder multiclassing is that it doesn't allow you to (feasibly) create characters that were core iconics in TSR D&D, and that it is almost always either extremely overpowered or extremely underpowered.

    BretI wrote:
    PHBR? Must be something that came out after I completely abandoned AD&D for better classless systems.

    Player's Handbook Reference, the brown books. Pretty much synonymous with Second Edition AD&D-- I've never seen a core-only 2e game-- but admittedly hit-or-miss in terms of balance and quality.

    BretI wrote:
    I wasn’t saying the current system or simple variants of it were the best. I was saying that some sort of multiclassing was needed.

    D'accord, then. I'm arguing the same thing, except that I am arguing that some other multiclassing system is necessary.

    BretI wrote:
    I only played first edition of Rollmaster, but I found it made things extremely costly if you were going outside your class. It had an interesting take on the magical system, but there were other things that were problematic for our group.

    I love Rolemaster qua Rolemaster (esp. SS/FRP), but I really do consider it a terrible influence on D&D, starting with Combat & Tactics (for AD&D2) and running throughout the d20/3.X design cycle.

    All of the crippling limitations imposed on combat classes between AD&D and d20 have their roots in Rolemaster rules-- that made sense in their context-- and these contributed heavily, along with removing AD&D's limitations on magic, to the exaggeration of TSR D&D's LFQW problem moving into d20.

    I love Monte Cook, and I love his work on both games, but he shouldn't have crossed the streams.

    BretI wrote:

    Right now, we have very little information on the classes and almost no information on multiclassing. We do know that there will be features locked behind class walls, but don’t know what they are nor if there are ways around it. We know that they have redone the underlying proficiency system, but don’t know all the details of how that will work.

    It sounds like they are keeping some elements of the current multiclassing system, while allowing other things to be gotten without having to multiclass. I suspect we really willl not be able to see how it works until we see a couple of class tables.

    I know. I'm just using the opportunity of the new edition to grind old axes-- my biggest complaint about d20 and my biggest disappointment in 5e, finally at my mercy.

    Plus, it's a chance to needle all the same Paizo fans that have been ridiculing my efforts to make Pathfinder more AD&D like for the past ten years.

    How can I resist?


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    Save the dip! Dipping lets people create the characters that they want to play.

    We want to encourage a wide diversity of viable builds. Designing a system that all-but-forces you to stay in-class is going to severely limit that diversity.

    If anything, I would hope that PF2 makes level dipping less crippling for casters. I'm sure there's a lot of cool character concepts out there that get shelved for reasons like "As cool as it would be for this witch to take a swashbuckler level, I can't justify losing a spell level for it." Save the dip! Free the casters!


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

    Multiclassing has two conflicting issues that would need to be resolved together:

    1) A 1st level character has to have basic functionality in his class, while a higher level character multiclassing into another class can get away with being less capable in his new class (and he probably should be less capable, since he just picked up the basics while adventuring instead of dedicating most of his pre-adventuring life to learning the new class).

    2) On the other hand, further levels in the new class grant too little to the character. I don't know of any combination of 10 levels in each of 2 classes that is anywhere close to the power level of a 20th level single classed character.

    And I don't know of any multiclassing system that adequately addresses both of these issues.


    Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

    We still haven't seen the normal class tables. Until we do, it will be tough to say what can be done. It sounds like each of the classes has choices you can make as you take them.

    One solution would be to give some of the resources you need to make a first level character at first level as part of their background and have 'amateur <class>' choices that give lesser versions of a different class. Think the Amateur Gunslinger feat as an example. Once you take a level of the real class, you are then allowed to change the 'amateur' into a full class choice.

    It would be slightly more complicated, but it would allow you to give more class abilities at first level while not allowing a 1/1 character to have everything of both classes at second level. Additional class levels give more choices so that eventually the multi classed character can get the full benefits of both classes -- just spread out.

    Silver Crusade

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    One thing I do not understand is people calling for multi-classing to be more generous for casters.

    "We need to address the power gap between the high level casters and the high level martials!"

    At the same time they say

    "Multi-classing needs to be better for casters!"

    Multi-classing for martial type characters in Pathfinder is usually a way for martials to close the gap with casters. You make it easier for casters to multi-class and you're only going to increase the disparity at higher levels.

    Some people dip for flavor, but 90%+ of them dip because it is entirely beneficial to their character to do so.


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    Kain Dragonhand wrote:

    One thing I do not understand is people calling for multi-classing to be more generous for casters.

    "We need to address the power gap between the high level casters and the high level martials!"

    At the same time they say

    "Multi-classing needs to be better for casters!"

    Multi-classing for martial type characters in Pathfinder is usually a way for martials to close the gap with casters. You make it easier for casters to multi-class and you're only going to increase the disparity at higher levels.

    Some people dip for flavor, but 90%+ of them dip because it is entirely beneficial to their character to do so.

    Because those two are unrelated issues.


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

    I'm not a fan of the 1 level dip in current pathfinder. This is due to the unnecessary added complexity and that it isn't really an option for newer players due to the level of system knowledge required to dip effectively (Especially those class+archtype dips). However, it is in many cases the only way to create some of the more useful and interesting character concepts and so needs to remain in current Pathfinder.

    In terms of 2nd edition, i'm all for getting rid of a single level dip in a class but only if the new mechanics allow the same results as we currently have for dipping. In effect, the new method for multiclassing stops dipping because it makes dipping redundant, rather than by banning it. This would also be much easier for newer players too.


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    Demon Lord of Paladins! wrote:
    Kain Dragonhand wrote:

    One thing I do not understand is people calling for multi-classing to be more generous for casters.

    "We need to address the power gap between the high level casters and the high level martials!"

    At the same time they say

    "Multi-classing needs to be better for casters!"

    Multi-classing for martial type characters in Pathfinder is usually a way for martials to close the gap with casters. You make it easier for casters to multi-class and you're only going to increase the disparity at higher levels.

    Some people dip for flavor, but 90%+ of them dip because it is entirely beneficial to their character to do so.

    Because those two are unrelated issues.

    They ARE related... But not quite in the way he suggests.

    Make martial characters scale up to par with 9th level spellcasting and suddenly that parity opens up the design space for valuable multiclassing for all.


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    kyrt-ryder wrote:
    Demon Lord of Paladins! wrote:
    Kain Dragonhand wrote:

    One thing I do not understand is people calling for multi-classing to be more generous for casters.

    "We need to address the power gap between the high level casters and the high level martials!"

    At the same time they say

    "Multi-classing needs to be better for casters!"

    Multi-classing for martial type characters in Pathfinder is usually a way for martials to close the gap with casters. You make it easier for casters to multi-class and you're only going to increase the disparity at higher levels.

    Some people dip for flavor, but 90%+ of them dip because it is entirely beneficial to their character to do so.

    Because those two are unrelated issues.

    They ARE related... But not quite in the way he suggests.

    Make martial characters scale up to par with 9th level spellcasting and suddenly that parity opens up the design space for valuable multiclassing for all.

    This is more what I meant. the caster/ non-caster issue is its own set of issues that needs addressed. I do not however see PF doing this.


    Not dipping just needs to be more attractive numbers wise than dipping.. if a specific idea requires it, great. Don't take that away.

    But a lvl 20 xxx should be better than 17x/1y/1z/1xy


    *Thelith wrote:

    Not dipping just needs to be more attractive numbers wise than dipping.. if a specific idea requires it, great. Don't take that away.

    But a lvl 20 xxx should be better than 17x/1y/1z/1xy

    The only exception to this I can think of are predominantly martial classes (possibly including the Paladin, Ranger and Bloodrager.)

    I can't think of other levels I would rather have for a Magus or Bard or Wizard or Cleric or Inquisitor or Druid or....


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    Ok, one very special exception, Blast Wizard with one level of crossblooded sorcerer. But that's only because the game does a bad job of supporting blaster casters.


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    *Thelith wrote:

    Not dipping just needs to be more attractive numbers wise than dipping.. if a specific idea requires it, great. Don't take that away.

    But a lvl 20 xxx should be better than 17x/1y/1z/1xy

    At the same time, there are some character concepts that are just terribly underpowered if you single-class, and dipping can help bring them up to viability.

    Blaster casters are an example of this in PF1 - a single-classed blaster is generally considered to be pretty bad, but dipping crossblooded sorcerer makes it viable. And considering how prevalent blasters are in fiction, and how many people want to play blasters, it's really good to give them a path to viability!

    I do agree with your general sentiment - a fully optimized wizard 20 should be more powerful than a wizard 19/sorcerer 1. But, that doesn't need to generalize to within a role, i.e., a wizard 20 blaster doesn't need to be better than a wizard 19/sorcerer 1 blaster, as long as blaster is not the optimal role for a wizard.

    edit: ninja'ed!


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    The viability of a concept should not hinge on multiclassing.

    That being said, I don't exactly agree Wiz 20 should be stronger than Wiz 19 Sorc 1

    It looks like PF2 may be heading in the direction of Character Level and Proficiency having a greater impact than Class Level.


    Hm. Hm hm hm. Now that skill and feat options are at least theoretically supposed to be so much better in PF2, with each class getting a ton of class feats for customization... I wonder how viable it would be for a multiclassing system to simply directly gestalt all abilities of two classes together? With single class characters then getting extra skill points and class/skill feats each level to reward them for their extra focus.

    Might not work except in a high power game depending on how they target things. But hm...


    I find "dipping a level or two in a 2nd class will make your character much more powerful" to be undesirable.

    I find "dipping a level or two in another class to customize your character to fit your vision" to be just fine, provided your vision is not "invincible sword princess" or "a person who is powerful".

    Dark Archive

    Hmm.Soo we wanted pazio to stop multiclassing altogather so classes could be frontloaded and early levels wouldnt be as borings as it is now and now someone else wants to remove the multiclassing and make you wait for weeks maybe even months to do the thing?

    EDİT:You know what.I trust pazio knows the problems about multiclassing already and probably has a solution for it.At first ı thought resonance was a terrible idea.Then I kept reading about it and evantually I was satisfied with what Pazio did.I think they got this.


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    My biggest grip when people compare the level 20 cap abilities to class#/Class#/Class# is that very few games get to that point. When they do, that game is almost over and it's time to start a new one.

    So in most games it makes sense to class dip for that little extra that you can enjoy during your playing then having to wait for that special ability which is then done with after a couple sessions.

    Going as a pure class needs a bit more buffing then multiclassing.

    Another grip I have about Multiclassing which I hope gets fixed, is that it can inflate you're characters saves.
    3rd level Example
    Slayer 1/ Brawler 1 / Unchained Monk 1
    Fort 6 / Reflex 6 / Will 0
    vs
    Fort 3 / Reflex 3 / Will 1 - Unchained Monk 3


    Paizo has made a lot of money from their pathfinder gaming system, by making it something that can grow horizontally every month by having splat books that contain new options that can conceivably work for any character, pushing fans and players to purchase new books that might focus on settings they will never go to, because their are new features (feats, archetypes, spells, items, classes etc), that can be used in other games. This is a core mechanic of the game that makes it a profitable one to develop. Obviously, fans love it, because the possibilities for what a character can do grow exponentially with every new source book comes out. This modularity is a strength of the game that brought a lot of people to 3rd edition in the first place and is why there was such a strong market for it after WotC split. Yes, 4e tried a new kind of highly splattable modularity, but it severely lacked the class modularity of pathfinder and by the time it tried to introduce it, it was too late to win back the players who had jumped ship. Pathfinder had the market for players that saw leveling up as a new power point in their game where they should be able to make any new choice they desired that would add effectiveness to their character.
    For the most part this hasn't been a problem. People keep buying books. However, Pathfinder has hit a point of bloat where a person could nearly earn a college degree in character building and it can be difficult to hold social gaming events where new and experienced players alike have any chance of playing characters that are fun and exciting for themselves, that can mesh well with a player that is vastly more or less experienced at the table. If new players are choosing other systems because they come to store events and feeling overwhelmed by the depth of possibilities inherent in pathfinder, then it is easy to see why the company is looking to revise their system, especially since many of the problems people are identifying are pretty much a sign of the games success. Who knew that Pathfinder was going to be so successful that they would be able to have more than 3 core handbooks filled with almost nothing but new classes and features?
    To be honest, a massive revision is absolutely necessary, because the original wording on many of the games features are nearly incompatible or create massive confusion. For a long time the fix was to try suggesting that this ability worked like ability "X" previously, but it never did quite work exactly like that ability and it made it where you had to own 5 or 6 books to build a character because of all the cross referentiality. Now of course, most players don't buy all those books. They utilize digital resources to make characters and just want to make sure that their source material is compatible with officially sanctioned rules and then feel free to make the fluff for it fit their character concept and go from there.
    (Hey Unicore, what does this book of a post you have written have to do with stopping the 1 level dip)?
    Pathfinder exists as a roleplaying game, and not just an adventure design company (which it is still the best in the business at), because enough players chose to keep the D20 modular class design alive for paizo to make a lot of money supporting these players over ones who wanted their characters to become more iconic paragons of the classes they chose at first level. Getting rid of a core leveling system where new level = choose any class you qualify for, is going to be a direct challenge to the market that created this game.
    However, my question is, why keep releasing new classes that are accessible at first level? Why not make prestige classes available as early as level 3, and take a more D20 modern approach to the early levels, (i.e. Have fewer different classes available at level 1) and encourage players to build for prestige classes that will give them access to the more powerful and focused versions of Iconic characters. Players that hate not having Paladins and full-fledged wizards can start at level 4, where those kind of classes would be available, and multi-classing would still be possible to accomplish certain broad stroke character ideas/access to skills and feats, but massive class-centered abilities like smite, or fast spell progression, would be slightly more gated behind classes that had prerequisites to join.
    D20 Modern played with this form and it was very interesting, but they never had the story writers to make a world out of it that was irresistible to play, and their focus on historicity for its content made it never likely to work well for high fantasy, which is where Pathfinder's market is.

    Longest story short: Less base classes and more prestige classes will alleviate the "how can a low level character exploit multi-classing for one-off encounters/showing off my character's strength in a module designed around the mechanic I am trying to exploit" i.e. the real threat of 1 level dips, and preserve the flexibility and openness of pathfinders meat-cow: modular class leveling.


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    I think that PF1 already incentivizes single-class a lot as it is. It takes a very determined player to find a combo that will be worthwhile, with some exceptions. A lot of these are the most interesting chars I've seen.

    I'd rather see people take the inspired blade dip into Investigator if it keeps them from being miserably useless in combat for 4 levels. Ideally there would be an easier way to achieve this, but there's not.


    Matt2VK wrote:


    Another grip I have about Multiclassing which I hope gets fixed, is that it can inflate you're characters saves.
    3rd level Example
    Slayer 1/ Brawler 1 / Unchained Monk 1
    Fort 6 / Reflex 6 / Will 0
    vs
    Fort 3 / Reflex 3 / Will 1 - Unchained Monk 3

    I agree strongly with everything you are saying Matt2VK, and it sounds like their idea for a proficiency system is going to fix this, and the issues with BAB right up as far as character leveling goes since most of this stuff will scale with character level rather than class level, and it will be more a question of where your individual character puts their class, skill, and ancestry feats, rather than how many of each of these any character has.


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    Kain Dragonhand wrote:
    One thing I do not understand is people calling for multi-classing to be more generous for casters.

    Well, that's the thing: single-classed Tier 1/2 casters are hands down, ridiculously, the most powerful PCs in the game-- and that's a bad thing.

    But if your character is any kind of spellcaster, almost any amount of multiclassing quickly renders you incapable of contributing to your team in a level-appropriate fashion-- and that is also a bad thing.

    They are both issues that need fixed. They don't really counteract each other in the way you're implying.


    Matt2VK wrote:

    My biggest grip when people compare the level 20 cap abilities to class#/Class#/Class# is that very few games get to that point. When they do, that game is almost over and it's time to start a new one.

    So in most games it makes sense to class dip for that little extra that you can enjoy during your playing then having to wait for that special ability which is then done with after a couple sessions.

    Going as a pure class needs a bit more buffing then multiclassing.

    Another grip I have about Multiclassing which I hope gets fixed, is that it can inflate you're characters saves.
    3rd level Example
    Slayer 1/ Brawler 1 / Unchained Monk 1
    Fort 6 / Reflex 6 / Will 0
    vs
    Fort 3 / Reflex 3 / Will 1 - Unchained Monk 3

    Unchained fractional bonuses kinda fixes this in PF1.

    The way you pick proficiencies at level 1 in PF2 is gonna be weird with multiclassing, so there will likely be some rule on what you actually get.

    Liberty's Edge

    The power of 9th level casters is a systemic issue and one based on the sheer versatility of spells. Allowing non-martials to prestige without having their spellcasting/class features crippled will not make this problem any worse unless a really ridiculous prestige class for casters is produced.

    Moreover, I don't see how shutting out some of the excessive 1-level power dips is going to make M/CD any worse when the problem had nothing to do with combat power anyway.

    Silver Crusade

    Demon Lord of Paladins! wrote:
    Kain Dragonhand wrote:

    One thing I do not understand is people calling for multi-classing to be more generous for casters.

    "We need to address the power gap between the high level casters and the high level martials!"

    At the same time they say

    "Multi-classing needs to be better for casters!"

    Multi-classing for martial type characters in Pathfinder is usually a way for martials to close the gap with casters. You make it easier for casters to multi-class and you're only going to increase the disparity at higher levels.

    Some people dip for flavor, but 90%+ of them dip because it is entirely beneficial to their character to do so.

    Because those two are unrelated issues.

    How exactly are they unrelated? Adding some of different classes is generally done to increase the effectiveness of one's character (some do it for roleplay purposes, but by and large we all know why it's done).

    You make it easier on casters to multi-class with something along the lines of keeping their spell progression, or part of it (just a guess) and now you exacerbate the problem of the Martial/Caster disparity.

    Full casters are generally more powerful than those who are not, full casters who multi-class and don't get punished for it will naturally increase that disparity even more.

    Yes, at their base they are separate issues, but that doesn't mean you can avoid taking this into account.


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    Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
    Kain Dragonhand wrote:
    How exactly are they unrelated? Adding some of different classes is generally done to increase the effectiveness of one's character (some do it for roleplay purposes, but by and large we all know why it's done).

    Please, enlighten me. Why do I multiclass?

    The other option would be to not make such sweeping and insulting generalizations.

    “Kain Dragonhand” wrote:

    You make it easier on casters to multi-class with something along the lines of keeping their spell progression, or part of it (just a guess) and now you exacerbate the problem of the Martial/Caster disparity.

    Full casters are generally more powerful than those who are not, full casters who multi-class and don't get punished for it will naturally increase that disparity even more.

    Yes, at their base they are separate issues, but that doesn't mean you can avoid taking this into account.

    I don’t think people are saying take full casting and features from another class. They are saying that right now, if casting is your primary ability you take way too big a hit if you multiclass.

    Look at the Mystic Theurge from the CRB. It requires multiclassing of divine and arcane spellcasting. It allows full progression of spells per day in both Wizard and Cleric!

    The thing is by the time you qualify for it, you are so far behind in both of the classes that most people consider the class way too weak. That is using a prestige class. Just alternating Wizard/Cleric or Sorcerer/Oracle would be even weaker.

    It would be better if the multiclassing system allowed you to combine spell casting classes with other classes without making the spellcasting become almost irrelevant. Allow options so that people can maintain their caster level would be a big step. Allow them to make trade offs. A balanced Mystic Theurge should be something that a good multiclassing system would allow you to emulate without needing a prestige class.

    Same can be said for all the hybrid classes. Wouldn’t it be better if you could just combine Alchemist and Rogue to build Investigators or Sorcerer and Barbarian for Bloodragers?


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    Ya know optimisation is not a swear word, no matter how you try to dress it up as such. Wanting to eke a little more edge out of the system isn't a bad thing for everyone. Please don't homogenise everything to the point where it is as drab as 4e.


    Thematically, I have never been a fan of 1-level dips. On the other hand, I have never outright banned them at my tables, even the heavily homebrewed ones. If the player REALLY wants the 1st level abilities and is willing to pay the cost when looking at needing to wait longer to unlock the top level stuff in their primary class, I'm not going to rain on their fun.

    The only time I can think of that I really put up a bit of a stink about it was in an old 3.0 game, where I had a player want to 1-level dip for HiPS out of Shadowdancer, despite not having really shown any inclination to being that sort of character to that point. Sure, they had the requisite stats, but they had never used them in THAT fashion. I compromised and allowed him to take the level, but he didn't get the feat until he found someone to teach it to him. It opened up some nice side-session role-play.

    Silver Crusade

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    Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
    dragonhunterq wrote:
    Ya know optimisation is not a swear word, no matter how you try to dress it up as such. Wanting to eke a little more edge out of the system isn't a bad thing for everyone. Please don't homogenise everything to the point where it is as drab as 4e.

    It's a problem when you get guilted for making any sub-optimal choices. If there is only a small number of "optimal" options then you already have a homogenized game, and the rest is wasted ink.


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    DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
    dragonhunterq wrote:
    Ya know optimisation is not a swear word, no matter how you try to dress it up as such. Wanting to eke a little more edge out of the system isn't a bad thing for everyone. Please don't homogenise everything to the point where it is as drab as 4e.
    It's a problem when you get guilted for making any sub-optimal choices. If there is only a small number of "optimal" options then you already have a homogenized game, and the rest is wasted ink.

    That is not a problem with the system.


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    PossibleCabbage wrote:

    I find "dipping a level or two in a 2nd class will make your character much more powerful" to be undesirable.

    I find "dipping a level or two in another class to customize your character to fit your vision" to be just fine, provided your vision is not "invincible sword princess" or "a person who is powerful".

    And what if I DO want my concept to be "invincible sword princess"? Obviously a completely, mechanically invulnerable character makes the game no longer fun, but going for a thematic concept can often involve a level or two of another classes abilities.

    What if I DON'T want to be Sherlock Holmes, but DO want to have bursts of insight now and then? A single level in Investigator gets +1d6 to Knowledge, Spellcraft, and Linguistics every time I roll them, with a very limited pool of uses for other skills. It costs a level of advancement in my main class, but there ISN'T a way to get that feature without a dip. There are some magic items that come close, but that depends on DM availability.

    Maybe I am reading more into your statements, but it seems very judgmental against anyone who would consider multi-classing for any reason other than background fluff - I'm a wizard, but Daddy was a fighter so I'll take three levels of fighter to be like him!

    EDIT: I think the difference for me is that I do NOT believe in Class Identity - there's no reason a Not-Rogue shouldn't have a high Disable Device skill. I believe in Character Identity - what can my character do or not do? I don't care where those abilities come from, or if I archetyped that or dipped this or VMC-ed the other thing. My character is what they can do, not the classes it took to get there.


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    Character / = Class


    My personal experience, for what little it's worth, is that I've only seen two reasons people dip. Either they are doing it for thematic reasons and I have to try to convince them not to gimp their character, or for power gaming. Again, I'm no fan of that one guy who uses a build he found online to make himself stronger than anyone else in the party. Either way, it makes my life harder.


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    Matt2VK wrote:

    This here is mostly for non-spell casting classes.

    I'm getting a bit tired of seeing a bunch of min/max characters that pick up just a single level or two of multiple classes. A lot of classes seem to front load their class features in their beginning levels. Multi-classing and cherry picking these classes usually can end up making a stronger and more flexible character. The problem is, there's usually no real reason to stay as a 'pure' non-caster class as those 'pure' classes don't really reward you with anything till the very high levels, which most games do not see.

    Pure classes should give a -
    Minor class ability @ 5th level
    Good Class ability @ 10th
    Very Good Class ability @ 15 (This is usually the cap stone of most games that I see played and should be something players should try to get)
    Class Defining Ability @ level 20 (most games will never see this)

    The level 20 cap stone ability which was giving out in PF1e, while it looked nice and sounded 'cool', never really got used. So why shoot for a ability you'll never see as by the time you get it, you'll have one big scene and then you're character is retired.

    You do realize that you are coming across as saying "Stop having fun in a manner in which I o not approve."

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