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A lot of what makes a bard a bard would presumably now be skill feats for the Perform and social skills. So something would definitely need to be done for it, whether full casting or spell points or something else. It's a class that can go in multiple directions, so I see either of the following as basically equally likely:

  • Bard is a full Occult caster. Occult is presumably the psychic-flavored spell list that still includes healing, so this is a closer fit to what a bard does than any of the other three lists. It gets a couple spell point abilities for stuff a bard can do that doesn't fit neatly into either a skill feat or occult spell.
  • Bard is a skill monkey class with skill access second only to the Rogue. It has a ton of spell point abilities. In this event the bard is probably given a new signature combat ability of its own to stack up in a fight, like how rogues get sneak attack to be useful despite mostly being skill monkeys. This could be something indirect, like taking over the role of the class that hands out teamwork feats like candy, though this seems less likely. It could also be more direct, like panache. Or something entirely new, a magus-like style themed on distraction and echoes and bonus sonic damage on attacks and the like.

There is a third option. I just consider it less likely since from what we've seen so far, you're either a full caster or a power user. But bard could be the example of a middle path to form a template for other future classes, since there are a /lot/ of half or two-thirds casters in PF1.

  • Bard is an Occult half-caster, advancing 1 level of spellcasting every 2 class levels such that it would end with access to 5th tier spells; alternately there actually are two spellcasting tables, with the bard using one that hits 1st tier spells at 1st level, 2nd tier at 4th level, and so on up to 7th tier at 19th level. The difference is made up with more spell point abilities than option one. It may have Advanced Learning every few levels to pick up spells from any list to simulate the "dilettante" nature of the old bard. It may get "Spellstrike" as a bonus feat to represent singing spells while striking with a blade.

It will be interesting to see what they go with.

Scarab Sages

Even though PF1 Bards made decent archers, their magic was always their main contribution. Glibness, Suggestion, illusions, Haste, Confusion, Heroism; all that is part of the Bard flavor. Can’t imagine doing justice to that only with a few powers.

I do hope they still use weapons as their at-will attack option, though.


The Raven Black wrote:
Weather Report wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:
I hope bards are not full casters.
Yeah, that has not sat right with me about 5th Ed.
Why ?

I can answer for myself, at least.

- Bardic magic doesn't feel as… legit as wizardry/sorcery or divine power. Musical magic vs. studied spells or a bloodline connection to powerful magic sources or tapping into the power of nature or calling on the gods. It felt natural that a Bard wouldn't get as much magic as a Wizard.
- The lower amount of casting left Bards room for more of other stuff. Skills, Inspire Courage, and class features to support skills (half progression on knowledges, auto-twenty a knowledge, substitute performance for other skills to get your main stat to something unrelated).

That said, despite it not sitting right, it still played better. I didn't have to split my focus and spend resources trying to come up with something to do in combat while singing.


Weather Report wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:
I hope bards are not full casters.
Yeah, that has not sat right with me about 5th Ed.

Yeah. I said this a few posts up, but I'll gladly reiterate it.

I was really hoping Bards would just get "Spell Points" instead, like Paladins and (I assume/hope) Rangers.


I imagine, even if we don't get it in the core rulebook, there is still room for a half caster that uses slots and not spell points.

At least I would hope so...


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I tend to agree with QuidEst on this. The problem with Bards have been too much emphasis was put on them being a jack-all-trades class that this eventually became the class identity. A bard apparently needs to be a skill monkey (but not as good as Rogue), a caster (but not as good as Wizard) but somehow is Arcane and can heal (not as good as cleric), can fight (but not as good as a Full BAB class), etc all while somehow being able to play music and being loremasters.

I'd love if 2nd edition focused on giving Bard a more firm identity with its own flavor. If making the Bard Occult does that, then I'm good with that. Frankly I think an Occultist like Bard that can store resonance in their instruments to create different spell like effects would be an interesting idea.


I would prefer the bard focused more on bardic music and used spell points then be a caster at all. I would love bardic music effects that grant fast healing, resistances, haste effects, freedom of movement, energy damage to weapons, sonic based attacks, positive energy damage to undead, various status ailments, mage armor, etc. Also bards that focus on other things then music such as art, dance, writing, etc. would be really interesting.


QuidEst wrote:

- Bardic magic doesn't feel as… legit as wizardry/sorcery or divine power. Musical magic vs. studied spells or a bloodline connection to powerful magic sources or tapping into the power of nature or calling on the gods. It felt natural that a Bard wouldn't get as much magic as a Wizard.

- The lower amount of casting left Bards room for more of other stuff. Skills, Inspire Courage, and class features to support skills (half progression on knowledges, auto-twenty a knowledge, substitute performance for other skills to get your main stat to something unrelated).

This is pretty much my sentiment as well. I can't see bards wielding world-altering magic to the same extent a druid, cleric, wizard or sorcerer can. Now, I suppose a sufficiently compelling implementation could overcome such misgivings. But in that case, the bards' skills and other powers would need to be seriously pared down. That would be too much of a discontinuity. The bard, after all, needs to entertain the crowd all day long, not just cast a bunch of spells and be done in five minutes.

So I'd prefer the bard eventually acquiring superhuman skills and mind-influencing power, rather than 10th level spells. Spells on the side (such as the paladin's) would be fine.

Shadow Lodge

QuidEst wrote:
Druid gets four skills starting at trained from class: Crafting (I think), Nature, Survival, and one based on their order. Orders include: Leaf (dealing with plants), Animal (start with an animal companion), Storm (elemental powers), and Wild (change shape at level 1!). It's important to note that you can get the things from any order (so wanting wild shape from level 1 doesn't lock you out of getting an animal companion or storm powers), but your chosen order will be the one you're best at. Many Druid feats have "Special: If you are a Druid of the X order, (some extra bonus)".

Is it Shifter style shapeshifting or actually useful?

Liberty's Edge

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Deadmanwalking wrote:
There are only two colors of spell icons on that page of the book, and no other seeming way to determine spell list. Disintegrate, Dispel Magic, Disrupt Undead, and Dinosaur Form are the same color (they are black), as are Discern Lies, Disjunction, Dirge of Doom, and Discern Location (they are red). This is interesting. I have no earthly idea what it means, mind you, but it's interesting.

Someone in another thread (I believe Fuzzypaws) mentioned that this is an indicator whether the spell can be Heightened (Black indicating one that can). That makes much better sense than any other theory (and is consistent with the data as presented, though it makes a Red Cantrip slightly odd).

So that's probably what's going on there.


As much as I'd prefer Bard having Spell Points and Sorcerer the Occult list to be further distinguished from Wizard, I feel like it's not going to go that way. Sigh.

Unrelated to that, but significant to me nonetheless:

Whether it's some kind of Totemic Barbarian, or Beastly Ranger, I continue to increasingly realize that having a Wild Shape option - without spells - in Core is very important to me.


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The only core 6/9 caster may be the Bard, but many of the classes that come later are 6/9 caster, and many of those are among the most liked classes; Magus, Inquisitor...
If we lose the very concept of 6/9 casters, that seems a huge change from PF1 that I hope not happens.


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Alaryth wrote:

The only core 6/9 caster may be the Bard, but many of the classes that come later are 6/9 caster, and many of those are among the most liked classes; Magus, Inquisitor...

If we lose the very concept of 6/9 casters, that seems a huge change from PF1 that I hope not happens.

Very much agreed. And frankly would really not like if the PF2 bard concentrated only on songs, as it was liked by my group exactly because he was partial caster/warrior/skill monkey/support character.


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QuidEst wrote:
- Bardic magic doesn't feel as… legit as wizardry/sorcery or divine power. Musical magic vs. studied spells or a bloodline connection to powerful magic sources or tapping into the power of nature or calling on the gods. It felt natural that a Bard wouldn't get as much magic as a Wizard.

And yet, there are many stories where music is magic. You may have heard of this British bloke named Tolkien who wrote up a setting where the world was sung into existence by a bunch of demigods/angels of various power levels. The Hávamál speaks of secret songs of power that let the narrator heal the sick, break chains, and reflect curses back on the caster (among other things). Other examples are the Pied Piper, various Legend of Zelda games, and so on.

Now, that magic should probably be less immediately spectacular than that of a wizard - more about affecting other people's minds (either via morale buffs or mind control), healing, and perhaps long-term creation. But I don't see why it has to be less powerful.

Quote:
- The lower amount of casting left Bards room for more of other stuff. Skills, Inspire Courage, and class features to support skills (half progression on knowledges, auto-twenty a knowledge, substitute performance for other skills to get your main stat to something unrelated).

This, on the other hand, is a good point. Full spellcasting should "cost" a lot in class design, which leaves less room for other stuff.

Silver Crusade

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

Yeah, "Magic B has to be less powerful than Magic A" doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me.


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It will be interesting to see how the bard fares as both a skill monkey and a caster. We have seen ways that spells can be OP, and a few ways that skills can be OP. Having lots of access to both might be kind of nuts.


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Zaister wrote:
MusicAddict wrote:
When they went over magic items during the banquet, the Phylactery of the Occult spoiled what the last list of spells will be. We know of Arcane and Divine, they confirmed that Primal is the third list, and they said they wanted to keep the 4th list under wraps for a while longer, but the grater version grants dream message as an innate OCCULT spell. Unless that this is meant to define a 5th category of spells that won't be used by any of the core classes by default, this is our 4th and final list.
I'm not convinced occult here indicated the fourth spell list. Why would you need to point a spell list for the a spell that you gain through an item? What would be the relevance of that information?

It was mentioned in the statblock thread that abilities that are magical but not 'spells' per say are being tagged with a type of magic. For instance, the Redcap's red cap is Arcane. This takes the place of "Spell-Like" or "Supernatural" designations to indicate an ability is magical in nature, and thus subject to things like Antimagic Field. In addition to that, and particularly more relevant to this exact example, having such tags also allows design space for effects and abilities that specifically block certain types of magic. For instance, one could have an area (or creature) that was outside the reach of the Gods, that blocked Divine spells. Or a creature that acted as a Supernatural Sponge that resisted and maybe even got buffs from Occult spells.

Catharsis wrote:
Even though PF1 Bards made decent archers, their magic was always their main contribution. Glibness, Suggestion, illusions, Haste, Confusion, Heroism; all that is part of the Bard flavor. Can’t imagine doing justice to that only with a few powers.

In my group it's usually just the Inspire Courage. Everything else (usually a bow, their spell slots are really too few to focus on) is the icing, the Inspire is their main contribution.


Yeah, most Bards I have seen use mostly inspire courage with the occasional spell. Weapons can vary, though rapier, whip, and bow seem to be the most common. Of course archetypes can alter this but to date the archeologist is the only archetype I have seen used for bards.

Shadow Lodge

I played an Archivist once. A Wordstriker when they were useful too, and I've seen an Arcane Duelist in use. So the others did get used, just not often.


Was there any mention of barbarians, monks, rangers, or sorcerers?


Dragon78 wrote:
Was there any mention of barbarians, monks, rangers, or sorcerers?

Rangers were mentioned very briefly, but I already included that in the opening post. They like an animal companion's teamwork mode even more by virtue of being more martially focused. None of the others were mentioned.


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I don't know if they will, but it seems like the Sorcerer offers an interesting design possibility, in that their spell list could be entirely tied to their bloodline. The main trait of a sorcerer (or, at least the way I think of a sorcerer) is that they are born with innate magic, and I see no reason why that inborn magic should be forced into only one of the four available types of magic

So, an Arcane bloodline would produce a "standard" PF1 sorcerer, a Divine bloodline gives us Favored Soul, the theoretical Occult bloodline produces something that lives in a similar space as the Shaman, and a Primal bloodline would create an elementalist or something similar. That way, they could have several options in the Core for players without having to create several more classes in future books. It seems like a lot of PF1 additional class design was to create something that was "sorcerer, only with a different type of magic", and that you could get around a lot of that by making the class itself more flexible from the beginning.


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I expect bards to be literally half casters. It's the biggest perk of having 10th level spells.

Grand Lodge

Staffan Johansson wrote:
QuidEst wrote:
- Bardic magic doesn't feel as… legit as wizardry/sorcery or divine power. Musical magic vs. studied spells or a bloodline connection to powerful magic sources or tapping into the power of nature or calling on the gods. It felt natural that a Bard wouldn't get as much magic as a Wizard.

And yet, there are many stories where music is magic. You may have heard of this British bloke named Tolkien who wrote up a setting where the world was sung into existence by a bunch of demigods/angels of various power levels. The Hávamál speaks of secret songs of power that let the narrator heal the sick, break chains, and reflect curses back on the caster (among other things). Other examples are the Pied Piper, various Legend of Zelda games, and so on.

Now, that magic should probably be less immediately spectacular than that of a wizard - more about affecting other people's minds (either via morale buffs or mind control), healing, and perhaps long-term creation. But I don't see why it has to be less powerful.

The Bard definitely suffers from a lack of good literary archetypes. Those Tolkien demigods/angels feel more like Sorcerer archetypes than jack of all trades musicians.

I've always felt that Bards felt right in 2nd ed where they were a Rogue archetype who were also good with beguiling/compulsion magic. I think they should be the best at the magic Trickster role.


Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Gorignak227 wrote:
Staffan Johansson wrote:
QuidEst wrote:
- Bardic magic doesn't feel as… legit as wizardry/sorcery or divine power. Musical magic vs. studied spells or a bloodline connection to powerful magic sources or tapping into the power of nature or calling on the gods. It felt natural that a Bard wouldn't get as much magic as a Wizard.

And yet, there are many stories where music is magic. You may have heard of this British bloke named Tolkien who wrote up a setting where the world was sung into existence by a bunch of demigods/angels of various power levels. The Hávamál speaks of secret songs of power that let the narrator heal the sick, break chains, and reflect curses back on the caster (among other things). Other examples are the Pied Piper, various Legend of Zelda games, and so on.

Now, that magic should probably be less immediately spectacular than that of a wizard - more about affecting other people's minds (either via morale buffs or mind control), healing, and perhaps long-term creation. But I don't see why it has to be less powerful.

The Bard definitely suffers from a lack of good literary archetypes. Those Tolkien demigods/angels feel more like Sorcerer archetypes than jack of all trades musicians.

I've always felt that Bards felt right in 2nd ed where they were a Rogue archetype who were also good with beguiling/compulsion magic. I think they should be the best at the magic Trickster role.

When I think of Bards, I think of François Villon... :3


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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Elfteiroh wrote:
Gorignak227 wrote:
Staffan Johansson wrote:
QuidEst wrote:
- Bardic magic doesn't feel as… legit as wizardry/sorcery or divine power. Musical magic vs. studied spells or a bloodline connection to powerful magic sources or tapping into the power of nature or calling on the gods. It felt natural that a Bard wouldn't get as much magic as a Wizard.

And yet, there are many stories where music is magic. You may have heard of this British bloke named Tolkien who wrote up a setting where the world was sung into existence by a bunch of demigods/angels of various power levels. The Hávamál speaks of secret songs of power that let the narrator heal the sick, break chains, and reflect curses back on the caster (among other things). Other examples are the Pied Piper, various Legend of Zelda games, and so on.

Now, that magic should probably be less immediately spectacular than that of a wizard - more about affecting other people's minds (either via morale buffs or mind control), healing, and perhaps long-term creation. But I don't see why it has to be less powerful.

The Bard definitely suffers from a lack of good literary archetypes. Those Tolkien demigods/angels feel more like Sorcerer archetypes than jack of all trades musicians.

I've always felt that Bards felt right in 2nd ed where they were a Rogue archetype who were also good with beguiling/compulsion magic. I think they should be the best at the magic Trickster role.

When I think of Bards, I think of François Villon... :3

The canonical bard for me has always been Fflewddur Fflam.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
gwynfrid wrote:
- The bard, after all, needs to entertain the crowd all day long, not just cast a bunch of spells and be done in five minutes.

Isn't the bards musical power in Pathfinder 1 measured in rounds per day? How long till you actually last 5 minutes? (4+Cha; +2 rounds per level)

Also most of the "performances" could be written up as spells with intricate verbal (vocals) or somatic (body movement like dancing) elements, or even material ones (such as instruments?). This already seems largely in line with spell casting since those performances are magically infused. Also a single spell that has a duration of an hour pretty much changes that whole 5 minute bit doesn't it?


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

Kvothe from the Kingkiller Chronicle. Or any of Mercedes Lackey's Bard series. Basically, the bards in the array of fiction I read are masters of "name" magic, which often (but not always) manifests as song or music.

As casters of both arcane and divine spells, and with an intuitive grasp of magic that combines the wizards' studied knowledge with the sorcerers' innate control, I always thought that bards should be at least as powerful as wizards when casting. So for me, when 5e made bards full casters (with true mastery over all magic through their magical secrets feature), my response was "Finally!"


Riddlemaster of Hed is my bard inspiration.

John Lynch 106 wrote:
I expect bards to be literally half casters. It's the biggest perk of having 10th level spells.

Except 10th level spells aren't part of the regular progression (which would give you 2 at 19th level and 3 at 20th), but a 20th level feat selection that only gets you one a day.


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

Just to expand how I how feel that bards (my favorite class) should be perceived (in my perfect world):

When most people think of "Bards," they perhaps think of minstrel sidekicks that dabble in a variety of areas.

When I think of a "Bard," I think of a generational prodigy and peerless spellcaster - jack of all trades, and master as well.

Scarab Sages

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Shinigami02 wrote:
In my group it's usually just the Inspire Courage. Everything else (usually a bow, their spell slots are really too few to focus on) is the icing, the Inspire is their main contribution.

Sure, that goes without saying. But Inspire Courage is not really something a Bard does with their combat rounds, it's something that happens almost automatically in the background when the Bard is around. After a while, it gets noticed only when it abruptly ends (such as because of a Saving Finale). :Þ As far as actual Standard Actions go, the spellcasting was pretty damn important. My Mummy's Mask Bard, Nekepti, certainly did more good with her Hastes and Heroisms than with her shortbow...!

The problem is, 6/9 casting doesn't work in PF2, since spell power is linked to spell level. If you allow spell levels to lag behind dramatically, the whole spellcasting thing becomes irrelevant at later levels. Powers circumvent that problem for dabbling classes by auto-scaling. I don't see any sensible middle ground here, to be honest.

I would, in fact, appreciate it if Bardic Performance were so relevant a contribution to party power that the spells had to be significantly less powerful than the arcane and divine spells of the same levels to balance it out. That can simply be achieved by the way the spell list is designed. I suppose that might cause problems later when designing a more spell-focused occult class (the Psychic?), but that could be amended by mixing in some arcane spells cast as occult spells.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Dragon78 wrote:
I would prefer the bard focused more on bardic music and used spell points then be a caster at all. I would love bardic music effects that grant fast healing, resistances, haste effects, freedom of movement, energy damage to weapons, sonic based attacks, positive energy damage to undead, various status ailments, mage armor, etc. Also bards that focus on other things then music such as art, dance, writing, etc. would be really interesting.

That seem a buff master that will greatly enhance a party and will do almost nothing without companions.

Personally I would dislike playing that kind of character, but I suppose others will like it.
The spells a PF1 bard get allow him to do more by himself, even if not much.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Gorignak227 wrote:
Staffan Johansson wrote:
QuidEst wrote:
- Bardic magic doesn't feel as… legit as wizardry/sorcery or divine power. Musical magic vs. studied spells or a bloodline connection to powerful magic sources or tapping into the power of nature or calling on the gods. It felt natural that a Bard wouldn't get as much magic as a Wizard.

And yet, there are many stories where music is magic. You may have heard of this British bloke named Tolkien who wrote up a setting where the world was sung into existence by a bunch of demigods/angels of various power levels. The Hávamál speaks of secret songs of power that let the narrator heal the sick, break chains, and reflect curses back on the caster (among other things). Other examples are the Pied Piper, various Legend of Zelda games, and so on.

Now, that magic should probably be less immediately spectacular than that of a wizard - more about affecting other people's minds (either via morale buffs or mind control), healing, and perhaps long-term creation. But I don't see why it has to be less powerful.

The Bard definitely suffers from a lack of good literary archetypes. Those Tolkien demigods/angels feel more like Sorcerer archetypes than jack of all trades musicians.

I've always felt that Bards felt right in 2nd ed where they were a Rogue archetype who were also good with beguiling/compulsion magic. I think they should be the best at the magic Trickster role.

In AD&D 1st edition they where more similar to Celtic bards: Fighters, then Thieves, the trained by Druids.

Almost impossible to make in regular play but very nice if made when you have already played several levels and able to enter play as bards.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Catharsis wrote:
Shinigami02 wrote:
In my group it's usually just the Inspire Courage. Everything else (usually a bow, their spell slots are really too few to focus on) is the icing, the Inspire is their main contribution.

Sure, that goes without saying. But Inspire Courage is not really something a Bard does with their combat rounds, it's something that happens almost automatically in the background when the Bard is around. After a while, it gets noticed only when it abruptly ends (such as because of a Saving Finale). :Þ As far as actual Standard Actions go, the spellcasting was pretty damn important. My Mummy's Mask Bard, Nekepti, certainly did more good with her Hastes and Heroisms than with her shortbow...!

The problem is, 6/9 casting doesn't work in PF2, since spell power is linked to spell level. If you allow spell levels to lag behind dramatically, the whole spellcasting thing becomes irrelevant at later levels. Powers circumvent that problem for dabbling classes by auto-scaling. I don't see any sensible middle ground here, to be honest.

I would, in fact, appreciate it if Bardic Performance were so relevant a contribution to party power that the spells had to be significantly less powerful than the arcane and divine spells of the same levels to balance it out. That can simply be achieved by the way the spell list is designed. I suppose that might cause problems later when designing a more spell-focused occult class (the Psychic?), but that could be amended by mixing in some arcane spells cast as occult spells.

Apparently that isn't really true for control spells. The DC increase steadily and there is no Hd limit to the effects.


Insight wrote:

Kvothe from the Kingkiller Chronicle. Or any of Mercedes Lackey's Bard series. Basically, the bards in the array of fiction I read are masters of "name" magic, which often (but not always) manifests as song or music.

As casters of both arcane and divine spells, and with an intuitive grasp of magic that combines the wizards' studied knowledge with the sorcerers' innate control, I always thought that bards should be at least as powerful as wizards when casting. So for me, when 5e made bards full casters (with true mastery over all magic through their magical secrets feature), my response was "Finally!"

Not trying to be contrarian; just want it to be known that not everyone feels this way. I, for one, do not at all. "...at least as powerful as wizards..." I disagree with this part in particular so much. And so would anyone I play with, for that matter.

And lest someone accuse me of Wizard bias: they're one of my least favorite classes. I have never played one, and don't really intend to do so. But, they are Wizards, so...

Scarab Sages

Diego Rossi wrote:


Apparently that isn't really true for control spells. The DC increase steadily and there is no Hd limit to the effects.

Good point. Spell level might still matter for overcoming countermeasures, though, like Protection from Evil.

Liberty's Edge

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I suspect that Bards and Witches will both be full casters, and will get the same list of spells. This list will be fairly limited (as compared to Wizard or Cleric) to make up for their very impressive non-spell list based abilities (Performance and Hexes, respectively).

Shadow Lodge

Moving this from Blasting in PF2

Captain Morgan wrote:
Dragonborn3 wrote:
Captain Morgan wrote:
Dinosaur form replaces your stats with static numbers that don't change sans heightening.
So they went back to 3.5 polymorph? That seems... well, like a step back.

No, they didn't. 3.5 and 5e polymorph let you pick any creature and get its stat block replacing your own. This is undesirable because it means a monster or two will inevitably rise to the top, it is harder to comb through a bestiary and find an appropriate form, and it is hard to future proof the spell.

This version gives you mostly the same stats for any of the 6 or so dinosaurs you can become, with each having a couple unique abilities. It is certainly easier to run than similar spells in PF1 or any version of D&D I'm familiar with.

That said, while this seems solid for this specific spell, it seems hard to mesh with polymorph spells with a broader range of critters.

I was talking more about replacing stats in my initial post.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Deadmanwalking wrote:
I suspect that Bards and Witches will both be full casters, and will get the same list of spells. This list will be fairly limited (as compared to Wizard or Cleric) to make up for their very impressive non-spell list based abilities (Performance and Hexes, respectively).

If these two classes share a spell list, maybe that list is simply a list of spells shared by all spell casting classes? Even in PF1 I could come up with a fairly large list of spells that are on all 3 of the cleric, druid, and sorcerer/wizard lists.


I may be spoiled by starting with 5e, and never playing a bard before outside of that system, but I actually like having bards as 9th lvl casters.


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Witches to me have nothing thematically in common with witches, so I would be surprised and disappointed if they shared a spell list.


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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
MMCJawa wrote:
Witches to me have nothing thematically in common with witches, so I would be surprised and disappointed if they shared a spell list.

Assuming you mean witches have nothing in common with bards, then I agree.

Bards and Psychics, sure. Both manipulate emotions, the mind, the target's perception of reality. Bards even get mage hand to approximate telekinesis. But witches only overlap with bards in that they both use charm spells. Otherwise witches are more interested in transmutations, nature spells, with some summoning and curses thrown into the mix.

Edit: I'd rather witches got the primal spell list and also charm/curse powers, rather than a mentalist inspired bardic spell list and nature powers. It fits the flavor of hexes to be charm and emotion effects rather than, say, cloud kill.


I would honestly expect witches to be Primal casters, yeah, not Arcane or Psychic/Occult. Basically the "cloistered cleric" answer to the Druid.


I still like the concept of Occult spell list for Sorcerers. Not so sure why, other than it's different than Wizards. Maybe the vibe it gives Sorcerers? Hmm. Not sure exactly.


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If sorcerers' casting is based on emotion and thought that would be a lot more fitting and interesting then verbal and somatic.

Liberty's Edge

David knott 242 wrote:
If these two classes share a spell list, maybe that list is simply a list of spells shared by all spell casting classes? Even in PF1 I could come up with a fairly large list of spells that are on all 3 of the cleric, druid, and sorcerer/wizard lists.

Both of them also have healing (which Wizard distinctly does not), so I doubt it.

MMCJawa wrote:
Witches to me have nothing thematically in common with witches, so I would be surprised and disappointed if they shared a spell list.

Assuming you mean Witches and Bards, I actually disagree. Both are actually very focused on being somewhere between Divine and Arcane, both have lots of mind effecting stuff. Both are very 'enchanting' in the literal sense of the word and both get their power from somewhat ambiguous sources (where does Bardic magic even come from?)

It's not quite a perfect fit, but it works well mechanically, and is at least as close as many PF1 Classes that share a magic type (Psychic an Spiritualist, or Bard and Summoner).


Gorignak227 wrote:
I've always felt that Bards felt right in 2nd ed where they were a Rogue archetype who were also good with beguiling/compulsion magic. I think they should be the best at the magic Trickster role.

Me too, though the 1st Ed one had great flavour, was also the original and most painful prestige class.

As I said in another thread, I am cautious about them being full casters, I wanted to like the Bard as a full caster in 5th Ed, but it just doesn't feel right. It also highlights no arcane half-caster, yet there are 2 divine ones in 5th Ed. Of course PF2 has a different setup, looks to only have full-slot casters (wizard, etc) and spell-point casters (paladin), so far?

As for the spell list, the bard has gone from "Druidical tutelage" to arcane, so, I can see them fitting into several of the spell lists (Arcane, Divine, Occult, Primal).

Liberty's Edge

To quote that other thread:

Deadmanwalking wrote:
Weather Report wrote:
This I am cautious about, I wanted to like the Bard as a full caster in 5th Ed, but it just doesn't feel right. It also highlights no arcane half-caster, yet there are 2 divine ones in 5th Ed. Of course PF2 has a different setup, looks to only have full-slot casters (wizard, etc) and spell-point casters (paladin), so far? I think my favourite iteration of the bard is 2nd Ed AD&D.

Yeah, only full casters and Spell-Point users so far. And I'm not precisely endorsing (I had my issues with the 5E Bard as well), just predicting.

Though, really, I think my issue with 5E Bards is less that they're full casters and more that they methodically removed almost all the cool stuff about being a Bard except casting. Bardic Inspiration just isn't very impressive in 5E, for example. I would much rather they were half caster who could actually meaningfully party buff without using spells.

Hopefully, PF2 will manage the right vibe via a robust Performance system combined with a less impressive spell list, keeping their focus primarily on their Performance stuff and maybe physical combat and away from spells (which is where their focus should be, and sorta where the 5E Bard loses me).

In short, I agree that thematically, the Bard's focus should be their skills, martial combat, and Performance stuff more than spells, but don't think that's actually inconsistent with being a full caster if they have the right kind of abilities and spell list.


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Mbertorch wrote:

I still like the concept of Occult spell list for Sorcerers. Not so sure why, other than it's different than Wizards. Maybe the vibe it gives Sorcerers? Hmm. Not sure exactly.

Ever since Paizo has spelled out that arcane magic is described as logic, rational thought, and categories in the 'All About Spells' blog I can't help but feel arcane feels like a poor fit for Sorcerers.

I fully expect Sorcerers (and perhaps Bards) will remain arcane but when I read that description is made it pretty clear that arcane magic was solely being based on Wizard traditions without much thought to the other traditionally arcane spellcasters. If the spontaneous arcane casters do remain where they are at it will feel like a square peg trying to fit into a round hole. If ever Paizo were going to try and make these classes more now would be the time.


Deadmanwalking wrote:

To quote that other thread:

Deadmanwalking wrote:
Weather Report wrote:
This I am cautious about, I wanted to like the Bard as a full caster in 5th Ed, but it just doesn't feel right. It also highlights no arcane half-caster, yet there are 2 divine ones in 5th Ed. Of course PF2 has a different setup, looks to only have full-slot casters (wizard, etc) and spell-point casters (paladin), so far? I think my favourite iteration of the bard is 2nd Ed AD&D.

Yeah, only full casters and Spell-Point users so far. And I'm not precisely endorsing (I had my issues with the 5E Bard as well), just predicting.

Though, really, I think my issue with 5E Bards is less that they're full casters and more that they methodically removed almost all the cool stuff about being a Bard except casting. Bardic Inspiration just isn't very impressive in 5E, for example. I would much rather they were half caster who could actually meaningfully party buff without using spells.

Hopefully, PF2 will manage the right vibe via a robust Performance system combined with a less impressive spell list, keeping their focus primarily on their Performance stuff and maybe physical combat and away from spells (which is where their focus should be, and sorta where the 5E Bard loses me).

In short, I agree that thematically, the Bard's focus should be their skills, martial combat, and Performance stuff more than spells, but don't think that's actually inconsistent with being a full caster if they have the right kind of abilities and spell list.

Yes, another problem with the 5th Ed Bard (and Rogue) is Expertise, by 9th level with a high Str, you can go around pinning pit fiends to the ground with impunity: "Welcome to 5th Ed, where Bards and Rogues are the best wrestlers in the multiverse."

As for the PF1 bard, with feats and archetypes, they should be able to cover a lot, maybe even get back to some of that druidical tutelage action!

Seeing 9th level spells still might make me twitch a bit, ha.

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