+1 per level on everithing?!?


Playing the Game


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Oh no!

Not this again.

Now it is on AC also?

I thing that this will give too much power to higher level characters over lower level encounters.

They will become too trivial.

the +1 per level needs to go ASAP.

flatten it down to +1 per 4 or 5 levels.

And remove it from AC.

Scarab Sages

Please read my post Igor.

http://paizo.com/threads/rzs2varc?Another-way-to-handle-1-per-level-progres sion#11


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Igor Horvat wrote:

Oh no!

Not this again.

Now it is on AC also?

I thing that this will give too much power to higher level characters over lower level encounters.

They will become too trivial.

the +1 per level needs to go ASAP.

flatten it down to +1 per 4 or 5 levels.

And remove it from AC.

Unfortunately, this game has taken the road traveled by the 4th edition, in my game group we have already started to call 4.75 as well as pathfinder 1th edition is 3.75. Ironic if you think that this game has been successful, thanks to the bad choices made on the 4th edition system.

The system forces you to assign unwanted points to make the mathematics stand out, i wonder what was wrong with the old system or even the use of other system like d&d 5th edition would be better. I already see that a good 50% of the community thinks the same way so there is still hope to backtrack.


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Igor Horvat wrote:
And remove it from AC.

That would absolutely, fundamentally ruin the math of the game, due to the way critical hits work. I wouldn't mind dropping +1/level to +1/2 levels, or something like that (any less and I think level becomes too small an impact). And also, it doesn't make a ton of sense to remove it from AC. Why wouldn't you get harder to hurt as you get more powerful?


Do we need the 1/2 level etc? We already have a -2-+3 range from leifiency, and we have a +1/2/3/4/5 from Mahmoud weapons and armor at ~lvl 4/8/12/16/20. We have additional ability improvements. We also have magic items that can bump skills. Do we really need to be put on a treadmill. I say no.

For comparison, that is more granularity in combat abilities than 5e has, so its by default less bound than 5e. Skills are arguably less so due to the little bit of expertise available with more granularity that 5e proficiency.


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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

The point of the system is to make simple tasks trivial to high level characters, and to make incredibly difficult tasks nearly impossible for low level characters. This does that very well.

I don't see the hate for high numbers. Everyone is talking about the "power creep" of leveling, that's the entire point. The purpose is to create a power gap between low and high level creatures/tasks while keeping similar level stuff about as hard as always. Only having a proficiency system doesn't achieve that, unless you make a task literally impossible until you have enough proficiency, which they also do a bit of.

Nearly every rendition of D&D/PF suffers from allowing specialist characters to achieve things Gods can barely do from very low level. This system makes that impossible, and I'm a fan of that. It's got quirks, but I'd rather see minor changes than major ones, if only to give proficiency slightly more power.


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Igor Horvat wrote:


I thing that this will give too much power to higher level characters over lower level encounters.

It's a feature, not a bug. Lower level encounters should be trivial to higher level characters, and quickly so.

Igor Horvat wrote:


the +1 per level needs to go ASAP.

flatten it down to +1 per 4 or 5 levels.

And remove it from AC.

No and double no.


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This seems to be the main split on the reception of this rules set.

If you think it makes characters very quickly become far more powerful than enemies that once seemed powerful, you are correct.

If you think its a treadmill, you are also correct.

Personally, my main gripe is that the +1/lvl very rapidly diminishes things like proficiency bonuses, ability scores etc. Just mathematically,these flat bonuses inevitably shrink in comparison to one's flat level bonus.

And since these are the things that come from character choices in class,feats, etc. the system actually diminishes the sense that a player has made meaningful choices along the way.

It can still work, bu they need to tune up the impact of these differentiating factors. Perhaps make Proficiency bonuses double at 5-10-15 etc. Or make them determine your per level scaling entirely, I don't know. But this is the biggest flaw in the system as I see it.


I feel like I remember seeing in one of the blog posts in the comments by a dev. They commented that there's kinda two viewpoints. One with bounded accuracy where the lv1 skeleton you fought can still do something to you in mass as you reach high levels or like PF2 where high levels mean superpower, taking on 10 guys at once easily. Sorry I'm having issues finding the quote since I remember my take away more than the actual text.


Sonovab$@%$.

I forgot this was a thing, as it's not really spelled out in the book or character sheet. Guess I'll need to go revise my sheets with the right numbers.

I went and doublechecked before posting and the one place I recall seeing it is under Proficiency on Pg 422. I really wish this will be made a bit more obvious when 2nd edition proper comes out.

Lantern Lodge

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Igor Horvat wrote:

Oh no!

Not this again.

Now it is on AC also?

I thing that this will give too much power to higher level characters over lower level encounters.

They will become too trivial.

the +1 per level needs to go ASAP.

flatten it down to +1 per 4 or 5 levels.

And remove it from AC.

I agree totally with the above. I often play at tables where there can be 4 levels different between the top level PC and bottom. With the +1/level to everything the low level PC is really going to suffer in achieving anything meaningful. The low level wizard is going to be outclassed on knowledge skills by the higher level uneducated barbarian. The low level barbarian is going to be outclassed on physical tests by the high level weakling wizard. This is bad for player satisfaction.

Pathfinder is supposed to be a group game where obstacles are overcome by teamwork. Not everyone needs to be good at everything and character choices should matter. The low strength character gets hauled over obstacles by the strong. The intellectual character solves the research project while the person only trained in fighting stands guard. If you need a diplomat, bring a person trained in diplomacy not just j random person with a higher level.

I would like to see more skill points than 2 per class (as per Edition 1 with many classes) but I believe adding +1 to all skills per level ruins character adaptability and makes a sameness to all PCs. IMO it also removes the need for player cooperation, which should be an integral part of the game, because at higher levels everyone becomes great at everything.


Tholomyes wrote:
Igor Horvat wrote:
And remove it from AC.
That would absolutely, fundamentally ruin the math of the game, due to the way critical hits work. I wouldn't mind dropping +1/level to +1/2 levels, or something like that (any less and I think level becomes too small an impact). And also, it doesn't make a ton of sense to remove it from AC. Why wouldn't you get harder to hurt as you get more powerful?

You are harder to hit. HPs represent that in abstract sense.

If you gain too much HPs and AC you are getting survivability out of hand.

And why in the Nine hells do you need +1 per level for level to have an impact?

Aren't more HPs, class or general or race features improvement?
Or more/better skills?

You should not improve per level just beucause, it should be a cost.

Maybe AC can be it's own skill group so every class can get to legendary via skill increase if they wanted to.

Or limit legendary AC to fighter only.

Grand Lodge

The issue is inherent in all D20 systems. The concept of 1-20 level progression creates a limitation on the system.

Ideally the chance of success should be 50% but as the power grows at a rate of 5% per level, the range between success and failure grows quickly. reducing progression by 1/2, 1/3 or 1/4 is one solution but when you mix them up the discrepancy from one system to another becomes too great a sacrifice. That's why fighters are the granddaddy of combat and wizards the poor stepchild of power due to their 1-9 spell progression.

Abstract mechanics like hit points, as Igor pointed out, help to mitigate the hard lines of the power curve inherent in a d20 system and to be honest, I think it could use more. I see no other solution to this within the d20 system. Instead, we have many versions (editions) attempting to manipulate the system to create new progression speeds.

The only way to overcome the flaws is to abandon the d20 system but I don't think that's something this playtest is intending to do. Instead the process we are partaking in today is to create a new system.
Some will like it, others will not, nothing is perfect for everyone.

The concept of simplifying systems, such as removing the differences between AC, Saves, and checks (remember thac0) opens up more space for new rules to help soften the power curve. But I don't think their is a good solution to making level 1 characters remaining a threat to a level 20. If you want new characters fighting alongside long standing characters, then your better off playing a system that doesn't have levels.

Grand Lodge

Expanding on the abstract rules, what I have always thought would be a good new abstract rule is one that reduces your level as your power is depleted. But there's never really been a good system to base it off except hit points. You could argue that, as a wizard expends his spells, he loses power, but there's nothing equivalent for fighters who can literally continue fighting for eternity.

Systems like spell points and endurance have been considered in the past but have been abandoned due to the excessive amount of tracking involved by both players and the GM.

I have tried a system that when you first reached 0 HPs, you receive a -1 level drain and your hit points return to max. You could only suffer 2 of these before you fall unconscious. The problem with it was inherent in the HP system where fighters could go on for much longer before needing a heal and clerics invested in damaging spells instead of healing. I tried to compensate this by reducing HPs granted per level from 1-4 (1 for wizard, 4 for fighter) but abandoned that when I realised just how much work was involved recalculating every weapon, spell, and ability for damage in the game!


Lord_Malkov wrote:

This seems to be the main split on the reception of this rules set.

If you think it makes characters very quickly become far more powerful than enemies that once seemed powerful, you are correct.

If you think its a treadmill, you are also correct.

Personally, my main gripe is that the +1/lvl very rapidly diminishes things like proficiency bonuses, ability scores etc. Just mathematically,these flat bonuses inevitably shrink in comparison to one's flat level bonus.

And since these are the things that come from character choices in class,feats, etc. the system actually diminishes the sense that a player has made meaningful choices along the way.

It can still work, bu they need to tune up the impact of these differentiating factors. Perhaps make Proficiency bonuses double at 5-10-15 etc. Or make them determine your per level scaling entirely, I don't know. But this is the biggest flaw in the system as I see it.

add to this that at some levels FOUR atributes are raised by 2 levels unless above 18, then 1.

Raising your 4 lower abilities is optimizing, you could build 1 over 18, but very few people will raise 2 atributes above 18.
Level 1 characters will be different, with these differences diminishing with level due to the +1/level and the atributes, besides for spellcasters, the low number of spells will make them choose the most effective ones.

My guess is that after 6 months there will be a power build for every archetype, with very few outliers and even them very similar.

Grand Lodge

Aadgarvven wrote:


add to this that at some levels FOUR atributes are raised by 2 levels unless above 18, then 1.
Raising your 4 lower abilities is optimizing, you could build 1 over 18, but very few people will raise 2 atributes above 18.
Level 1 characters will be different, with these differences diminishing with level due to the +1/level and the atributes, besides for spellcasters, the low number of spells will make them choose the most effective ones.

My guess is that after 6 months there will be a power build for every archetype, with very few outliers and even them very similar.

That's a good observation. While the idea of limiting ability raises after 18 restricts power creep it also restricts the versatility of some options. I think your right, certain builds will simply overpower others but then for some that's the enjoyment they get from a game.

Over time more rules will release which will change the top 6, then after a while we will be looking at PF3 :)

Perhaps we should only allow attributes to increase by +1 regardless how high they are, or increase it to +2. doesn't really matter which though, the result will be the same. the only difference will be the power gap created by the optimization.


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Aadgarvven wrote:
Lord_Malkov wrote:

This seems to be the main split on the reception of this rules set.

If you think it makes characters very quickly become far more powerful than enemies that once seemed powerful, you are correct.

If you think its a treadmill, you are also correct.

Personally, my main gripe is that the +1/lvl very rapidly diminishes things like proficiency bonuses, ability scores etc. Just mathematically,these flat bonuses inevitably shrink in comparison to one's flat level bonus.

And since these are the things that come from character choices in class,feats, etc. the system actually diminishes the sense that a player has made meaningful choices along the way.

It can still work, bu they need to tune up the impact of these differentiating factors. Perhaps make Proficiency bonuses double at 5-10-15 etc. Or make them determine your per level scaling entirely, I don't know. But this is the biggest flaw in the system as I see it.

add to this that at some levels FOUR atributes are raised by 2 levels unless above 18, then 1.

Raising your 4 lower abilities is optimizing, you could build 1 over 18, but very few people will raise 2 atributes above 18.
Level 1 characters will be different, with these differences diminishing with level due to the +1/level and the atributes, besides for spellcasters, the low number of spells will make them choose the most effective ones.

My guess is that after 6 months there will be a power build for every archetype, with very few outliers and even them very similar.

I agree, this will lead to further homogenization as players learn to optimize.

There is an argument for making the gap between a character that dedicates no resources to a skill or action type versus a character that has invested as much as possible shrink. I think that it can open up space for more thematic or marginalized archetypes if you can put a hard ceiling on the benefits of min-maxing, while minimizing the cost of un-optimized choices.

However,
The stated goals of the system include 'customization' as a key feature. And customization ONLY acts as such if it has weight and impact. To use a hyperbolic example: In a game where the average damage total is 1,000, getting an ability that adds +1 damage is not real customization since its will be subsumed by the scale of the system.

Here we do have a similar result. The unique class identifiers of proficiency and feats are very small nudges that don't have a dramatic impact on the result.... at least not in comparison to the flat level bonus in mid to late levels.

I can't say that it is 'wrong'. Only that it feels bad.

And you might argue that comparisons between PCs are irrelevant, and I would agree to the extent that the game is not about PCs fighting PCs... but you really DO want the Fighter to feel very much like the best Fighter in the group, and to allow them to emphasize that role rather than see their early level advantage slowly erode away to the point where they start to wonder how 9 levels of spellcasting is somehow equivalent to their extra +2 on attacks.


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Quijenoth wrote:
Aadgarvven wrote:


add to this that at some levels FOUR atributes are raised by 2 levels unless above 18, then 1.
Raising your 4 lower abilities is optimizing, you could build 1 over 18, but very few people will raise 2 atributes above 18.
Level 1 characters will be different, with these differences diminishing with level due to the +1/level and the atributes, besides for spellcasters, the low number of spells will make them choose the most effective ones.

My guess is that after 6 months there will be a power build for every archetype, with very few outliers and even them very similar.

That's a good observation. While the idea of limiting ability raises after 18 restricts power creep it also restricts the versatility of some options. I think your right, certain builds will simply overpower others but then for some that's the enjoyment they get from a game.

Over time more rules will release which will change the top 6, then after a while we will be looking at PF3 :)

Perhaps we should only allow attributes to increase by +1 regardless how high they are, or increase it to +2. doesn't really matter which though, the result will be the same. the only difference will be the power gap created by the optimization.

well, thanks, really the one that notice was Lord_Malkov.

Mine was only a minor observation.

The general idea I get is that we all want customization, and my take is that the best way of obtaining this is through feats, powerful feats.

I'd rather have attributes (STR and so on) to have less impact on the combat, well, more impact that current INT, but less impact that in playtest.

Think of it as 4 sources of optimising:
Attributes, feats, magic and skills. Which one do you want to have more impact on the game.
I prefer feats, and well below skills, attributes and then magic.

And they may also contribute to widen the gap between level 1 and 20 (not that I want that, I prefer a smaller gap, but if the gap has to be wide then). What do you prefer?
1 - I am better than you because I am level 20 so I have a +20 in my attack (even wizards! I always play wizard, and I would gladly change that 20 for 2 more spells, I want spells!!)
2 - I am better than you because I have legendary reflexes (+5 initiative), legendary fencer (+1 action per turn), Combat intuition (can guess your attacks because of my combat experience +4 on attack or defence each turn)

I don't know but I want the game to be memorable, not to cast less spells.


Lord_Malkov wrote:
Aadgarvven wrote:
Lord_Malkov wrote:

This seems to be the main split on the reception of this rules set.

If you think it makes characters very quickly become far more powerful than enemies that once seemed powerful, you are correct.

If you think its a treadmill, you are also correct.

Personally, my main gripe is that the +1/lvl very rapidly diminishes things like proficiency bonuses, ability scores etc. Just mathematically,these flat bonuses inevitably shrink in comparison to one's flat level bonus.

And since these are the things that come from character choices in class,feats, etc. the system actually diminishes the sense that a player has made meaningful choices along the way.

It can still work, bu they need to tune up the impact of these differentiating factors. Perhaps make Proficiency bonuses double at 5-10-15 etc. Or make them determine your per level scaling entirely, I don't know. But this is the biggest flaw in the system as I see it.

add to this that at some levels FOUR atributes are raised by 2 levels unless above 18, then 1.

Raising your 4 lower abilities is optimizing, you could build 1 over 18, but very few people will raise 2 atributes above 18.
Level 1 characters will be different, with these differences diminishing with level due to the +1/level and the atributes, besides for spellcasters, the low number of spells will make them choose the most effective ones.

My guess is that after 6 months there will be a power build for every archetype, with very few outliers and even them very similar.

I agree, this will lead to further homogenization as players learn to optimize.

There is an argument for making the gap between a character that dedicates no resources to a skill or action type versus a character that has invested as much as possible shrink. I think that it can open up space for more thematic or marginalized archetypes if you can put a hard ceiling on the benefits of min-maxing, while minimizing the cost of un-optimized choices....

agree and more, why does a 20L wizard need a +20 to attack or to defence.

I mean make the fighter the best in combat, the rogue the best in utilities and the wizard (or sorceror) the best in downtime.

The DM is the one that balances the game, not the players or the characters


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Lord_Malkov wrote:
And you might argue that comparisons between PCs are irrelevant, and I would agree to the extent that the game is not about PCs fighting PCs... but you really DO want the Fighter to feel very much like the best Fighter in the group, and to allow them to emphasize that role rather than see their early level advantage slowly erode away to the point where they start to wonder how 9 levels of spellcasting is somehow equivalent to their extra +2 on attacks.

This post could only be better if you also complained that all of the good combat feats are "locked" behind the fighter class.


Yes, they have gone specifically with big numbers and high level characters not being threatened by lower level monsters, a lot of needing natural 20s to hit you, which if fine, and I am hoping they make Legendary truly epic/mythic.

If you want to open up the threat range of monsters, flatten the math, BA, it's dead simple to omit the +Level, or use +1/2 level, or +1/4 level, I am playing with and without the treadmill, currently.


bugleyman wrote:
Lord_Malkov wrote:
And you might argue that comparisons between PCs are irrelevant, and I would agree to the extent that the game is not about PCs fighting PCs... but you really DO want the Fighter to feel very much like the best Fighter in the group, and to allow them to emphasize that role rather than see their early level advantage slowly erode away to the point where they start to wonder how 9 levels of spellcasting is somehow equivalent to their extra +2 on attacks.
This post could only be better if you also complained that all of the good combat feats are "locked" behind the fighter class.

I'm not sure I follow you.

The class feats are locked because they are the class's features. If they had decided to call them "Class Options" no one would be complaining. Its only because they are called feats that people feel like there should be some universal access.

I have no problem with that.

I would like them to be more impactful on the whole, but its a good idea... particularly because its so easy to expand on a class outside of the old Archetype system, which was necessarily a bit more narrow. I expect to see many books with many new class feats to choose from.

Doesn't make me like the flat scaling of everything for everyone, but hey, I don't have to like it. Maybe its just not for me.
I'm sure that the move toward 4e is meant to grab some unused space in the market since WOTC abandoned it, and I hope they are successful with it.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I agree that +1 per level to AC is a little concerning as I would think class features, items, and things like feat choices could allow for the scaling necessary to achieve the epic feel that high level characters should have.

I just don't see the 4E comparison, though. That's quite a leap based on just this single aspect of the game.

I also don't want to see PF2 emulate 5E which is a good system in itself but not something Paizo should be trying to mimic, either. I personally would prefer to see Pathfinder remain more classic D&D-ish, where high level characters are rare and legendarily heroic.

As far as the concern on trying to mesh characters of a wide range in levels, while I completely agree that how a character is developed by the player should be impactful, I would counter that experience matters. That scrawny kid who's been through 4 years of combat in very real life-or-death struggles should have something on the new recruit who's buff but has yet to see real blood spilled.

I do agree, though, that the skill advancement of +1 per step seems insignificant on the whole. +3 for someone who's legendarily good at something compared to someone who's just commonly trained doesn't amount nearly enough imo. Improving this might also help extend some of the impact that class choices offer, so if Master was +4 or +5 instead of +2, that highly trained swordswoman would be noticeably better than the untrained conjurer, even if the conjurer was more combat experienced. Couple that with some of the more impactful feat choices a fighter gets for combat, there would be no doubt as to who had the upper hand in a melee duel.


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I have to admit I don't like +1 per level. It works fine as a game mechanic, but it really breaks believability and immersiveness on a lot of story elements.

A Str 8, Dex 10 old man with a scholarly background and 20 levels of wizard shouldn't be mechanically favored to win fist fights over Str 18, Dex 16 Fighters with a background of street tough who are just starting their adventuring career.

+1 per level kind of takes the normal drawback to having a level system and exaggerates it to its maximum detrimental effect.


Lord_Malkov wrote:

Personally, my main gripe is that the +1/lvl very rapidly diminishes things like proficiency bonuses, ability scores etc. Just mathematically,these flat bonuses inevitably shrink in comparison to one's flat level bonus.

And since these are the things that come from character choices in class,feats, etc. the system actually diminishes the sense that a player has made meaningful choices along the way.

The level bonus makes other bonuses numerically a smaller percentage, but since everything (except static DCs) scales at the same rate, the fighter having +3 on attacks on top of his level will still be 15% better at everything than the wizard with +0.

If monsters didn't scale the same, then it'd matter. But since you get the exact same results from an equal-level encounter regardless of whether everything has +level or not, it doesn't end up mattering that the +level becomes a larger single bonus than everything else.


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Reticent wrote:

I have to admit I don't like +1 per level. It works fine as a game mechanic, but it really breaks believability and immersiveness on a lot of story elements.

A Str 8, Dex 10 old man with a scholarly background and 20 levels of wizard shouldn't be mechanically favored to win fist fights over Str 18, Dex 16 Fighters with a background of street tough who are just starting their adventuring career.

+1 per level kind of takes the normal drawback to having a level system and exaggerates it to its maximum detrimental effect.

So Merlin would get punked by some kid with a knife if they were in, say, an anti-magic field? I have to 100% disagree with that man. A 20th level wizard would have been in an absolutely ludicrous number of fights. He's not going to be at the mercy of some kid with a knife who's never seen anything more dangerous than a particularly large rat, magic or no.


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Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

There are a lot of good reasons for +1 to everything that make me glad for it. One of those things is that the high level wizard *can* take out a house cat without resorting to magic. Based on the examples discussed before the playtest came out, a 15th level wizard with a staff could hold his own against one, maybe two, tenth level guards with no special stuff going on. I'm not sure if that's still the case, but it hits almost the perfect balance for me.

If I wanted to play a game where mooks from five levels ago could kick my butt without me having to resort to spending my daily resources, I would play an E6 game, or any other system that doesn't let player capabilities climb so much.


Long John wrote:
Reticent wrote:

I have to admit I don't like +1 per level. It works fine as a game mechanic, but it really breaks believability and immersiveness on a lot of story elements.

A Str 8, Dex 10 old man with a scholarly background and 20 levels of wizard shouldn't be mechanically favored to win fist fights over Str 18, Dex 16 Fighters with a background of street tough who are just starting their adventuring career.

+1 per level kind of takes the normal drawback to having a level system and exaggerates it to its maximum detrimental effect.

So Merlin would get punked by some kid with a knife if they were in, say, an anti-magic field? I have to 100% disagree with that man. A 20th level wizard would have been in an absolutely ludicrous number of fights. He's not going to be at the mercy of some kid with a knife who's never seen anything more dangerous than a particularly large rat, magic or no.

I don't know about Merlin, who had some supernatural heritage going on, but yeah pretty much every septuagenarian is done for in that situation.

Experience counts for something, but if it mattered this much then pro athletes would keep competing at the highest level until they reach the normal retirement age of 65.

Put it another way, Thud the Int 3 lvl 20 Barbarian plays a game against a 17 year old chess prodidgy. Sure, Thud takes a -2 penalty for being untrained in board games.


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+Level is good for keeping monster threat ranges controlled, and your 15th-level character able to sit at the bar quietly drinking while dozens of of ghouls attack them, merely distracting them a bit.

With treadmill:

20th-level Fighter (+20) with 22 Str (+6), legendary proficiency (+3), and a +5 magic weapon, has +34 to hit. A Pit Fiend has an AC of 44.

Without treadmill:

20th-level Fighter with 22 Str (+6), legendary proficiency (+3), and a +5 magic weapon, has +14 to hit. A Pit Fiend has an AC of 24.

Nothing has changed in regards to what you need to roll for a success/crit, etc. It's just that now lower level monsters have a chance to hit you without rolling a natural 20. It simply depends on the world/stories you want to tell.

Aside from number inflation, I hope they make high level/Legendary, truly epic, really crazy feats/features.


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Reticent wrote:
Long John wrote:
Reticent wrote:

I have to admit I don't like +1 per level. It works fine as a game mechanic, but it really breaks believability and immersiveness on a lot of story elements.

A Str 8, Dex 10 old man with a scholarly background and 20 levels of wizard shouldn't be mechanically favored to win fist fights over Str 18, Dex 16 Fighters with a background of street tough who are just starting their adventuring career.

+1 per level kind of takes the normal drawback to having a level system and exaggerates it to its maximum detrimental effect.

So Merlin would get punked by some kid with a knife if they were in, say, an anti-magic field? I have to 100% disagree with that man. A 20th level wizard would have been in an absolutely ludicrous number of fights. He's not going to be at the mercy of some kid with a knife who's never seen anything more dangerous than a particularly large rat, magic or no.

I don't know about Merlin, who had some supernatural heritage going on, but yeah pretty much every septuagenarian is done for in that situation.

Experience counts for something, but if it mattered this much then pro athletes would keep competing at the highest level until they reach the normal retirement age of 65.

Put it another way, Thud the Int 3 lvl 20 Barbarian plays a game against a 17 year old chess prodidgy. Sure, Thud takes a -2 penalty for being untrained in board games.

That's apples and oranges. You can't tell me that a guy who has literally survived hundreds of encounters against things far more frightening that some punk with a knife is done in for. Pro athletes IRL are NOTHING close to a level 20 in a tabletop RPG.

Your 3 int Barbarian that is completely untrained in board games wouldn't even be allowed to roll in that example because he's untrained, as in literally knows nothing about the game or it's rules. The proficiency system is set up that way - to gate things behind proficiency so it doesn't matter he would allegedly have a +15? (forget the modifier for 3).


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Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Reticent wrote:
Put it another way, Thud the Int 3 lvl 20 Barbarian plays a game against a 17 year old chess prodidgy. Sure, Thud takes a -2 penalty for being untrained in board games.

The idea of the skills system is that proficiency level acts as a sufficient gate, and that there aren't too many hyper specific skills.

The entire system falls apart if you make a bunch of extra non-adventuring skills, but in any case in this example, a person untrained in the Board Games skill might not be able to play chess because they haven't been taught the rules. A chess prodigy is, what?, Expert? Master? What kind of skill unlocks can you think of for that system?

I am far more comfortable with adding level to everything breaking chess matches if it means my bad save isn't an auto-fail at high levels, or my wizard isn't a useless lump in an AMF.


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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

And to be fair, that rookie who just walked into camp (Saquon Barkley, for example) has literally been training, playing football, getting hit, learning how to avoid getting hit, being injured, recovering from injury, etc., etc., for years and is coming into his peak physical prime.

The 65 year old has likely began to break down physically from all the abuse over the years and (as a HB) might even be lucky to be able to walk by that time.

If we could apply fantasy elements to the NFL, then sure.. maybe if there were restoration spells and magic healing in the NFL that allowed a 65 year old to still be physically fit, then perhaps he would still be able to show that rookie a few things, but otherwise, the comparison really doesn't apply between the two vastly different worlds. Even so, as medical technology advances, you are seeing player careers last longer and longer.

What concerns me more is the relative low impact of higher skill training in comparison to pure stats and generic experience in all things in life.

An blacksmith who's been working with steel his whole life and has become a master with the tools of the trade should be noticeably better than someone who's barely spent time in the forge but has explored a lot of dungeons.


+1 to what ShadeRaven said^

Hey, I admitted the system *works*, I'm just pointing out that there is stuff it is *bad* at believably simulating.

If the GM has to rule that Thud auto-loses at chess because the system mechanics can't handle the situation plausibly, then that's clearly a place where the mechanics are hitting their limitations. It's pretty fair, and even *useful*, to fully consider system limitations, especially while we're still in the play-test period.

And while I'm not saying that +1/level *has* to change this in order for 2e to be a good game, there certainly must be more elegant ways to make a system where you don't auto-fail your bad save, or have a wizard who is useless in an AMF. (Side note- as I understand it, in 2e wizards are still probably useless lumps in a level appropriate challenge if an AMF gets dropped. Your opposition gets the same level bump, right?)

So- not to belabor poor Thud, but how much training (Lore: Board-games?) did any of you need in order to play chess? I'm guessing most people can play chess for the first time without so much explanation that it constitutes 'training'. Okay, *Thud* probably couldn't handle it with Int 3, but you don't exactly even need Int 8 to remember the relatively few rules once someone explains them to you.

Anyway, this isn't about any single hypothetical. I'm just saying that expertise in some particular field shouldn't translate into superior performance at unrelated tasks. Merlin shouldn't perform as if he's a pinnacle of physical conditioning, and Thud shouldn't be a leader in intellectual pursuits. With +1/level, that requires the GM to more or less say 'let's NOT use the system for this'.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Reticent, I am with you after your explanation of your viewpoint. It's more in line with mine. Experience in a specific field should count much more than just general life experience or expertise in unrelated (non-synergistic) tasks.

That said, in my campaigns... anyone at level 10 or higher are already considered extraordinary individuals and taking that to the extreme (level 20) indicates that we are talking about legendary/mythical figures that will go down in the histories. Those unique few are expected to be able to do amazing feats others can only imagine through tales, even in areas they aren't necessarily known for.

For me, I'd almost like to see training go from -2/+1 per step thereafter to something like -2/+1/+3/+5/+10 and reduce the level system to +1 per 2 levels, rounding up.

The problem with that, though, is it requires math and knowing the progression and I am sure the flat +1/level and +1 per training point was done so to make the system easily played. Granted, I don't see a real problem with that small level of math involved (dividing and rounding up) or remembering Master is +5 instead of +3, but I am sure there are arguements against any integration of divisors or non-linear progression.


since when have lower level encounters been an issue, and more importantly they shouldn't be, they are milk runs, there aren't supposed to be a challenge, that's what same level/cr and above creatures are for.


ShadeRaven wrote:

Reticent, I am with you after your explanation of your viewpoint. It's more in line with mine. Experience in a specific field should count much more than just general life experience or expertise in unrelated (non-synergistic) tasks.

That said, in my campaigns... anyone at level 10 or higher are already considered extraordinary individuals and taking that to the extreme (level 20) indicates that we are talking about legendary/mythical figures that will go down in the histories. Those unique few are expected to be able to do amazing feats others can only imagine through tales, even in areas they aren't necessarily known for.

For me, I'd almost like to see training go from -2/+1 per step thereafter to something like -2/+1/+3/+5/+10 and reduce the level system to +1 per 2 levels, rounding up.

The problem with that, though, is it requires math and knowing the progression and I am sure the flat +1/level and +1 per training point was done so to make the system easily played. Granted, I don't see a real problem with that small level of math involved (dividing and rounding up) or remembering Master is +5 instead of +3, but I am sure there are arguements against any integration of divisors or non-linear progression.

I wouldn't mess with proficiency, but simply cutting the treadmill to +1/2 level works out fine.


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Lord_Malkov wrote:

This seems to be the main split on the reception of this rules set.

If you think it makes characters very quickly become far more powerful than enemies that once seemed powerful, you are correct.

If you think its a treadmill, you are also correct.

Personally, my main gripe is that the +1/lvl very rapidly diminishes things like proficiency bonuses, ability scores etc. Just mathematically,these flat bonuses inevitably shrink in comparison to one's flat level bonus.

And since these are the things that come from character choices in class,feats, etc. the system actually diminishes the sense that a player has made meaningful choices along the way.

It can still work, bu they need to tune up the impact of these differentiating factors. Perhaps make Proficiency bonuses double at 5-10-15 etc. Or make them determine your per level scaling entirely, I don't know. But this is the biggest flaw in the system as I see it.

Lord_Malkov wrote:
Aadgarvven wrote:
Lord_Malkov wrote:

This seems to be the main split on the reception of this rules set.

If you think it makes characters very quickly become far more powerful than enemies that once seemed powerful, you are correct.

If you think its a treadmill, you are also correct.

Personally, my main gripe is that the +1/lvl very rapidly diminishes things like proficiency bonuses, ability scores etc. Just mathematically,these flat bonuses inevitably shrink in comparison to one's flat level bonus.

And since these are the things that come from character choices in class,feats, etc. the system actually diminishes the sense that a player has made meaningful choices along the way.

It can still work, bu they need to tune up the impact of these differentiating factors. Perhaps make Proficiency bonuses double at 5-10-15 etc. Or make them determine your per level scaling entirely, I don't know. But this is the biggest flaw in the system as I see it.

add to this that at some levels FOUR atributes are raised by 2 levels unless above 18, then 1.

Raising your 4 lower abilities is optimizing, you could build 1 over 18, but very few people will raise 2 atributes above 18.
Level 1 characters will be different, with these differences diminishing with level due to the +1/level and the atributes, besides for spellcasters, the low number of spells will make them choose the most effective ones.

My guess is that after 6 months there will be a power build for every archetype, with very few outliers and even them very similar.

I agree, this will lead to further homogenization as players learn to optimize.

There is an argument for making the gap between a character that dedicates no resources to a skill or action type versus a character that has invested as much as possible shrink. I think that it can open up space for more thematic or marginalized archetypes if you can put a hard ceiling on the benefits of min-maxing, while minimizing the cost of un-optimized choices....

Just wanted to say that I agree with the general idea of the above posts as well as the ones by Aadgarvven.

First off, let me say that I love the proficiency system and how he gates some things to certain proficiency levels. My problem with it is two:

- The +level is big numbers for the sake of big numbers and don't add anything to the mechanic of the game. It also degrades the benefit of higher Proficiency levels for things like combat and skills whose uses are not gated. If you added +1/2 level and the proficiency bonuses were doubled, it would vastly improve the system, in my opinion;

- The "gated" effects opened by higher Proficiency levels are, more often than not, extremely underwhelming. When they first talked about this, I became extremely excited, because I thought that Legendary Athletics would allow me to jump high enough to tackle a flying mage or swim up a waterfall. Things similar to the ones found in the Mythic Adventures or the Epic Level Handbook. No such luck...


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Bobson wrote:
Lord_Malkov wrote:

Personally, my main gripe is that the +1/lvl very rapidly diminishes things like proficiency bonuses, ability scores etc. Just mathematically,these flat bonuses inevitably shrink in comparison to one's flat level bonus.

And since these are the things that come from character choices in class,feats, etc. the system actually diminishes the sense that a player has made meaningful choices along the way.

The level bonus makes other bonuses numerically a smaller percentage, but since everything (except static DCs) scales at the same rate, the fighter having +3 on attacks on top of his level will still be 15% better at everything than the wizard with +0.

If monsters didn't scale the same, then it'd matter. But since you get the exact same results from an equal-level encounter regardless of whether everything has +level or not, it doesn't end up mattering that the +level becomes a larger single bonus than everything else.

That is why I said that it diminishes the "sense" that meaningful choices have been made. Devoting everything you've got (ie class levels, feats etc.) to be the worlds greatest swordsman should separate you more from those who do not. Perhaps, mechanically this is enough at +3, but it doesn't feel good (to me). Its actually good, in my opinion, for players to feel that there is something their group really counts on them for, because they are really far superior at it (ie more than having an extra +1 to a check in system with a variance of 1-20 as the starting point). It offers a role to play which is supported by the mechanics. Some don't care about this, and more power to 'em.

The previous gaps between characters grew immensely over levels. Probably way too much. But now the single largest contributor to any regular (i.e. non-magical) check is a bonus that everyone gets.

And this goes for skills and martial combat and everything... exceeept spellcasting.

This is an issue for me now, where it wasn't before, because as the fighter, one could previously, without spells, do things that the wizard couldn't, and feel good about it. Magic is the ultimate trump card in the end, but you could contribute in a party in ways they couldn't.

The fighter is 15% better at fighting.
The wizard is 15% worse and gets spells.

It might function, sure. I have already conceded that point, but I do not like how it feels, and that is something I consider just as important.

As I said, this is a big split and it is unlikely to change or be resolved, but I am offering my opinion nonetheless.


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NOTE: I actually agree that +level to everything is bad. Unfortunately I cannot find a way to advocate against it with the current rules. Also a lot of you are using poorly made arguments to support your position. So this post is designed to encourage people to make better arguments against +level.

shade2077 wrote:
The low level wizard is going to be outclassed on knowledge skills by the higher level uneducated barbarian.

This is true only in the following scenarios:

* Level 1 wizard (+5): Will only be outclassed by a level 8 barbarian.
* Level 3 wizard (+8): Will only be outclassed by a level 11 barbarian
* Level 7 wizard (+13): Will only be outclassed by a level 15 barbarian.
* Level 10 wizard (+17): Will only be outclassed by a level 19 barbarian.

Do you really think it's unreasonable for someone whose had 7 extra levels of real-world experience to be able make Arcana checks slightly better than a 1st level character whose only book smart?

shade2077 wrote:
The low level barbarian is going to be outclassed on physical tests by the high level weakling wizard.

Same modifiers as above apply.

shade2077 wrote:
This is bad for player satisfaction.

Real question here: How often do you pose your level 1 characters in a battle of wits and brawn against characters 7-9 levels higher than them?

In PF1e you have the exact same problems. Your master level 1 swordsman will be outclassed by a level 15 wizard using a staff and no magic. How much player satisfaction has been impacted in your PF1e games? I'm going to hazard a guess and say zero. I don't know why that suddenly changes in PF2e.

shade2077 wrote:
Pathfinder is supposed to be a group game where obstacles are overcome by teamwork. Not everyone needs to be good at everything and character choices should matter. The low strength character gets hauled over obstacles by the strong. The intellectual character solves the research project while the person only trained in fighting stands guard. If you need a diplomat, bring a person trained in diplomacy not just j random person with a higher level.

Good news: Unless your GM habitually throughs CR 1/3 kobolds and DC 10 climb checks at your 15th level characters, you're going to get the exact same experience in PF2e. As shown in this thread, wizards are going to struggle against level appropriate trivial climb checks* (they will barely be able to meet a low challenge and can't even attempt a high challenge), same for fighters trying to make an arcana check or a barbarian being diplomatic.

*FYI my group always laughs whenever a high level adventure puts climb checks before our PCs. Because by high level not a single one of us is actually walking on the ground by that level.

shade2077 wrote:
[+1 per level to all skills] also removes the need for player cooperation, which should be an integral part of the game, because at higher levels everyone becomes great at everything.

This is demonstrably not true. All you have to do is go up against level appropriate challenges rather than level 1 challenges. If level 1 challenges make up a regular part of your high level play then you're going to struggle to have fun in PF2e, but I'd have to question how much fun you actually had in PF1e.

WatersLethe wrote:
One of those things is that the high level wizard *can* take out a house cat without resorting to magic.

This was possible in PF1e as well. A PF1e cat has AC 14. A Str 7 level 10 wizard has +4. With a dagger he will deal 1d4-1 (1.5 damage). The cat will die within 4 rounds and will AT BEST have dealt 12 subdual damage.

We really need to let the house cat meme die. It's not accurate and using it to advance your case is not helpful.

Reticent wrote:
pretty much every septuagenarian is done for in that situation.

Not true in PF1e. Your kid with the knife might deal lethal damage instead of subdual damage. But with str 10 and bab +0 he's going to deal 5.5 damage in 4 rounds. Assuming he survived for 8 rounds that wizard has taken a small amount of damage for his 62 damage (72 if he took toughness).

Lord_Malkov wrote:
Devoting everything you've got (ie class levels, feats etc.) to be the worlds greatest swordsman should separate you more from those who do not. Perhaps, mechanically this is enough at +3, but it doesn't feel good (to me).

The world's greatest swordsman will be able to switch between any melee fighting style (shield+sword, TWFing with swords, two-handed sword and one hand sword and free hand) freely between battles whether he needs to become more defensive or stay focused on offense.

Furthermore with 11 class feats he'll be able to do all sorts of things someone whose devoted 0 resources can do:
Level 1) Furious Focus - The third iterative is essentially a wild swing with little chance of hitting. This feat gives you a second viable chance at hitting if you miss with your 2nd attack.
Level 2) Dueling Parry - Gives you +2 bonus to AC thanks to your expert swordsmanship.
Level 4) Quick Reversal - If you miss with your second or third attack then you can get a free do-over if you're being flanked.
Level 6) Shattered Defences - Regardless of whether you hit or miss, your expert swordsmanship makes your foe off-balanced.
Level 8) Positioning Assault - You can perform the reposition maneuver with your sword simply by striking your enemy.
Level 10) Combat Reflexes - Get 2 AoOs
Level 12) Dueling Dance - You spend 1 action per combat to get a +2 bonus to AC
Level 14) Stance Savant - You don't even have to spend 1 action to get your AC bonus.
Level 16) Whirlwind Strike - A close burst 1 attack against all enemies.
Level 18) Savage Critical - PF1e style improved critical range with your sword.
Level 20) Reactionary - Lots of reactions every round thanks to your expert swordsmanship. Spend your flexible feats on certain feats to get even more AoOs per round!

There are a lot of benefits and ways for someone who has devoted their resources to the craft of fighting with a sword to be significantly better than a wizard whose decided to pick up a sword and fight with it with no resources invested.


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Just to offer some counter points. I don't want to be argumentative, so let me say first that I am just giving a different viewpoint. I think all of your points are credible.

John Lynch 106 wrote:


Do you really think it's unreasonable for someone whose had 7 extra levels of real-world experience to be able make Arcana checks slightly better than a 1st level character whose only book smart?

Yes.

For some things.

Absurd hyperbolic example: "Of course Bill is a better programmer than you! You just got out of college, but he has been a carpenter for over 25 years!"

The point here is less about the effect and more about the impact that spending character resources has. Whether or not its relevant in the game is not my argument. You could previously choose to learn skills to do something others could not (because they chose to learn different skills). That is no longer the case.

Probably works fine, doesn't feel good to me.

John Lynch 106 wrote:
This is demonstrably not true. All you have to do is go up against level appropriate challenges rather than level 1 challenges. If level 1 challenges make up a regular part of your high level play then you're going to struggle to have fun in PF2e, but I'd have to question how much fun you actually had in PF1e.

True if the DCs all scale.

But then why scale the bonus and the DC at all. Its the definition of a treadmill. And at mid-level in PF1, the specialists were far more than +1-3 points ahead of their party-mates, which contributes to making a character feel special when their "thing" comes up in play.

Again, just my opinion.

John Lynch 106 wrote:
The world's greatest swordsman will be able to switch between any melee fighting style (shield+sword, TWFing with swords, two-handed sword and one hand sword and free hand) freely between battles whether he needs to become more defensive or stay focused on offense.

With the current form of magic weapons, this is actually less true than it was in PF1. Way more of your damage comes from you magic weapon, and you can't afford to have 2 or 3 lying around RAW.

So you are not adaptable once magic weapons become a thing.

This, I think, has some hope to see a change.

John Lynch 106 wrote:

There are a lot of benefits and ways for someone who has devoted their resources to the craft of fighting with a sword to be significantly better than a wizard whose decided to pick up a sword and fight with it with no resources invested.

Just far far less than PF1. Give wizards a full BAB in PF1 and there would STILL be more separation than in PF2. Martial feats are currently quite under-powered (my opinion), arcane spell failure is gone so no more full-plate advantage, and the majority of martial damage comes from the weapon rather than the wielder.

A PF2 fighter IS better with a weapon than the Wizard... the gap has simply closed an extraordinary amount. This is directly related to the +1/lvl to everything system.

I really think you should build a mid-level PF2 wizard that works toward being a fighter (still gets full spellcasting) and compare that to a straight up PF2 fighter.

Its not a great comparison.

The class budget previously tied up in full BAB has not been given a charitable refund here. It used to justify not getting powerful tools like spells. Now you have to compare spellcasting to.... a slightly better proficiency bonus and some more hp.

But hey, maybe its just me. Like I said, this is more about how this feels to me than anything else.


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Don't think you are being argumentative at all.

Lord_Malkov wrote:
You could previously choose to learn skills to do something others could not (because they chose to learn different skills). That is no longer the case.

At level characters will be able to differentiate themselves from each other. It only breaks down when you are comparing characters of different levels. In fact with religion and nature no longer INT based wizards are no longer the most knowledgable when it comes to religion.

Quote:

True if the DCs all scale.

But then why scale the bonus and the DC at all. Its the definition of a treadmill. And at mid-level in PF1, the specialists were far more than +1-3 points ahead of their party-mates, which contributes to making a character feel special when their "thing" comes up in play.

DCs scale because they always have. That's how 3.x and Pathfinder have always worked.

Let's compare the 15th level archer fighter with the rogue. Both are Dex based. Fighter has +18 to thievery, rogue has +23 and can disable traps, pick locks and do it quickly, pick pockets, stop a trap after its triggered as a reaction and steal spells from spell books. I'd say that's a pretty big differentiator.

Quote:

With the current form of magic weapons, this is actually less true than it was in PF1. Way more of your damage comes from you magic weapon, and you can't afford to have 2 or 3 lying around RAW.

So you are not adaptable once magic weapons become a thing.

+3 Bastard sword and shortsword are completely viable TWFing combination and let's you switch between fighting styles freely.

Quote:

I really think you should build a mid-level PF2 wizard that works toward being a fighter (still gets full spellcasting) and compare that to a straight up PF2 fighter.

Its not a great comparison.

One step ahead of you. Remove the fighter archetype feats and he has to spend 2 feats to get martial weapon training and is at +27 to attack vs +30, can't make AoOs, has no tricks he can pull off as a weapon user and is stuck with spell+attack (no shield for you) or attack, attack, shield (which is strictly worse then a fighter).

Quote:
this is more about how this feels to me than anything else.

And this is something that can't be argued with and is something I hope they take to heart. Because you can argue the math a and everything else until you're blue in the face. But if it doesn't feel right then you are wasting your time.


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ShadeRaven wrote:

For me, I'd almost like to see training go from -2/+1 per step thereafter to something like -2/+1/+3/+5/+10 and reduce the level system to +1 per 2 levels, rounding up.

The problem with that, though, is it requires math and knowing the progression and I am sure the flat +1/level and +1 per training point was done so to make the system easily played. Granted, I don't see a real problem with that small level of math involved (dividing and rounding up) or remembering Master is +5 instead of +3, but I am sure there are arguements against any integration of divisors or non-linear progression.

The biggest problem with this comes when you're against someone more than one proficiency level above you.

A fighter is only trained in Will saves. So with this scheme, at 20th level he could expect to have a Will save of around +20 (10 level, 1 proficiency, 4 for Wisdom 18, +5 item from armor). His Fortitude save fares better at either +23 (expert, Con 20) or +25 (also chose Unyielding Fortitude, p. 94).

A legendary intimidator is going to have around +32 (10 level, 10 proficiency, 7 for Charisma 24, +5 item).

The intimidator uses Scare to Death (p. 171) on the fighter, rolling against a Will DC of 30. The intimidator cannot critically fail this check, and only fails on a 1. He critically succeeds on an 8, forcing the Fighter to succeed in a Fortitude save DC 42 or die. The fighter that has spent a class feat on improving Fortitude succeeds on a 17, giving not-so-great odds at 20%. So the intimidator has a 52% chance to just kill the fighter in a single action. Thank god you become bolstered against Scare to Death after an attemp, or the fighter would most assuredly be dead in a round after three attempts.

If the intimidator had Assurance (automatic result of 30 at Legendary proficiency), he could alternatively use that to automatically Demoralize the fighter twice to give them -2 to saves, and then Scare them to Death for even better odds.


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Lord_Malkov wrote:
Bobson wrote:
Lord_Malkov wrote:

Personally, my main gripe is that the +1/lvl very rapidly diminishes things like proficiency bonuses, ability scores etc. Just mathematically,these flat bonuses inevitably shrink in comparison to one's flat level bonus.

And since these are the things that come from character choices in class,feats, etc. the system actually diminishes the sense that a player has made meaningful choices along the way.

The level bonus makes other bonuses numerically a smaller percentage, but since everything (except static DCs) scales at the same rate, the fighter having +3 on attacks on top of his level will still be 15% better at everything than the wizard with +0.

If monsters didn't scale the same, then it'd matter. But since you get the exact same results from an equal-level encounter regardless of whether everything has +level or not, it doesn't end up mattering that the +level becomes a larger single bonus than everything else.

That is why I said that it diminishes the "sense" that meaningful choices have been made. Devoting everything you've got (ie class levels, feats etc.) to be the worlds greatest swordsman should separate you more from those who do not. Perhaps, mechanically this is enough at +3, but it doesn't feel good (to me). Its actually good, in my opinion, for players to feel that there is something their group really counts on them for, because they are really far superior at it (ie more than having an extra +1 to a check in system with a variance of 1-20 as the starting point). It offers a role to play which is supported by the mechanics. Some don't care about this, and more power to 'em.

The previous gaps between characters grew immensely over levels. Probably way too much. But now the single largest contributor to any regular (i.e. non-magical) check is a bonus that everyone gets.

And this goes for skills and martial combat and everything... exceeept spellcasting.

This is an issue for me now, where it...

I can't agree more.

I usually spellcasters and I am in a heated debate in another forum because I want more spells for the casters.

What I don't want is to have more combat statistics, let the fighters shine there! But not only because they have a +5, but because they can do some amazing deeds locked behind feats and special abilities like raging.

I would be far happier having d4 hitpoints per level, and less AC and attack.

We are making everyone in the same level similar so where is the customization and specialization.
For those that are comparing, they forget that being +1 is not being better, it is being better 5% times. So unless you get to a +5 or something, it will not make that much difference. A 20 wizard could use similar movements than the fighter, and they will need since they will get fewer spells.

I know my posts are too long, but I want to add this:

Take a note to the class with more fans and the ones with more discussions.
Having a special feature that no one else has is always cool, and it doesn't hurt anyone.
Barbarian: rage, cool! it was an instantaneous success.
Alchemist: bombs, cool! fun for everyone, they say it is inferior, but still everyone wants to try.
Druids: wildshape, it is cool and has a lot of ways to use it.

on the other hand:
fighter what does it has? more feats? feats that almost anyone can get? please give them some combat manouvers or like that, and power points to use them.
Gunslingers, seemed really cool and they have this grit, but all they do is more damage besides anyone can make a gun work.

Really, make the differences based on cool stuff - some of them specifics to class - and not in numbers.


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Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
John Lynch 106 wrote:
NOTE: I actually agree that +level to everything is bad. Unfortunately I cannot find a way to advocate against it with the current rules. Also a lot of you are using poorly made arguments to support your position. So this post is designed to encourage people to make better arguments against +level.

This was a great post. I do want to touch on the fact that taking 4 rounds to kill a cat at level 15 meanwhile taking two low level potions worth of damage is a bit silly to me, but I did mean the cat example as a bit of humor.

I'm on the fence about the feel of +level to everything. I can definitely sympathize with people who are feeling put off by it, but I wouldn't go so far as to say I think it's bad just yet.

One thing I want to remind people of is that a 5 level difference is a Big Deal. In other threads I've mentioned that PF characters leave real world expectations behind by approximately level 5. Comparing a level 1 character to a level 6 character is like comparing your average Joe to the very best Earth has to offer in various specializations. I bring this up because casually comparing a level 15 person to a level 3 person, just doesn't make a whole lot of sense if you gloss over the huge, earth shaking consequences of those intervening levels.

That being said, I'd like to contribute to the anti-"+level to everything" side. Here are some arguments that I think might be compelling.

1. If everything advances in lockstep, it diminishes the feeling of importance of character choices. For example, in PF1e, advancing Acrobatics is an active choice that you make every level. In PF2e, you make the choice to bump it to Trained or Expert, collect your +3 or +4 versus your team mates, and forget about it for the rest of your career. Meanwhile, your team mates make no choice, and follow your growth trajectory effortlessly.

Unless you sink further, limited feat choices into boosting Acrobatics, you only get those few choices to get a static boost forever.

This feels like tuning up your car with all sorts of custom improvements, getting on a race track, and having your friend's beater consistently in the same place in your rear view. Cinematically, keeping the racers in the same frame is good, but it can't feel great.

This is a "feel is important" argument.

2. Skill differentiation really gets tied to GM fiat or limited skill feat choices. A GM is required to arbitrate what proficiency levels can allow you to achieve, without this mechanic the PF2e skill system falls apart from a narrative perspective. Who is to say whether the GM will make good calls?

What's not controlled by proficiency is instead controlled by skill feats, which you get a limited number of. Whereas in PF1e you could customize your skill point spread, in PF2e you're biting your nails about which skill you want to boost this level because it won't be another 2 levels until you can choose another.

This is a "potential flaw in actual use of the system" and a "limited customization" argument.

3. Narrative moments are restricted by +level to everything. For example, waiting to assassinate the target when he takes his armor off is unable to dramatically close a large level gap due to +level to AC. While this might not come up in regular play, it does raise the question when PCs hear news of off-screen moments, like "Wow, that general was assassinated in the bath, that means the assassin must have been level X to overcome his AC..."

This is a "cohesive world building may be limited" argument


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Lord_Malkov wrote:
...

I think you are totally correct here.

The differences are smaller, I think that was the intention, so it is that per design. Why then would I choose a class if the difference is then very small (or smaller than before).

By the way, to further agree with your points, spells have been reduced in time and power. Intelligence is not a thing anymore, and many other things.

So in fact the mid-level wizard you said with full plate, no spell failure and a 16 in strength is not only possible but playable, yes a mid fighter will have 20 STR, but that's not a lot of difference.

In the end, once again, the objective was to reduce differences between the characters, so that everyone could make the stealth checks and pass perception.

Maybe I am old school here, but I'd rather send the rogue to scout (with an invisibility from the wizard), use the cleric to keep the undead at bay, have the fighter (with haste from the wizard) to kill the monster and have the wizard to read the runes.

In the new game the probability of the full plate fighter of sneaking past, the cleric to hit the Big Bad, the rogue to read the runes, and the wizard of blocking the undead is big, even at high levels.

I like the first option, much much more.


Yes, as I have said before, the quest for balance, character/class parity, can lead to homogenisation.

Grand Lodge

Here are two things to consider.

1-0 level characters
This idea has been flying round since second edition. The concept of creating a non-heroic version of a character only to earn enough experience to be considered a hero and become a level 1 character.

2-Power Increase
Increase in Power is exponentially less with each new level. Going from 1st to 2nd in PF1 was as much as 100% gain in HPs. In PF2 this is slightly less with the bonus hps at 1st level from ancestry. Many GMs I’ve played with have toyed with the concept of increase hps at first level but while that helps with low level survivability at some point, it fails to address the discrepancy in power that plagues characters from 1st to 5th.

MMO Solution
Now let’s look at the online MMO consideration, I’m going to use Everquest as it’s the closest thing to D&D online that I am familiar with and that has addressed this problem.
EQ has always had issues with grouping, the idea of 1 party member being so much higher than the rest, he simply carries the others along. PnP doesn’t have this issue nowadays as level loss and xp discrepancy are pretty much a thing of the past for most groups, but we still have adventures with ranges of levels to accommodate tournament play. The solution for MMOs was to minimize the effect of power increase by increasing the minimum level.
Now the game slingshots you 50 thanks to faster xp and powerful mercs. If you pay you can start at level 85 to bring you closer to grouping with those playing at max level.

So what does this offer PnP PF2?
A solution would be to create new characters at 5th level instead of 1st or, create several sub-levels where characters make choices and gain bonuses to bring them to the equivalent of 5th level power at 1st level. Gaining equivalent HPs, AC, attack, saves, skills and spells at 1st level as that offered to a 5th level character would significantly bridge the gap from 1st to 20 and reduce the power curve in the process.
This is not something to consider lightly via house rules that I have experienced in the past. This is a huge consideration on every element of the game at all levels of play. But its worth considering during this early stage I think.

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