General Barbarian Thoughts


Classes


This is a thread for general thoughts on the alchemist. If you want to get hyper specific on the intricacies of specific feats or class features a more specific thread may be better.

I like the totems. My only barbarian in PF1e was an alcoholic college graduate (he was an angry drunk) who turned native in the Mwangi Expanse and gained Necromantic powers. He would have been perfect as a fury totem barbarian who (with GM support) retrains it to the Spirit totem! How awesome is that?

Moment of Clarity is a great feat to let you make a bloodrager (full round action to cast a spell while raging). Although my fighter is a bit upset to not get Raging Intimidation :( I'm guessing 1 class feat = 2 skill feats).


I like most of the Barbarian totem, except for the Superstition one. I feel like this totem is restricted to NPCs.

I like the new direction the Barbarian has taken as a whole. Now I can really feel the raging warrior behind the concept.

Also, I like that my favorite Barbarian archetype from PF1 (the Mooncursed) can now be played as core, and has been improved (goodbye being forced to turn into a Shark at low levels !)


I feel the barbarian still has the problem that the PF1 barbarian had. Too many rage powers seem to function on out of combat or in combat modes for mobility. There seems to be a distinct lack of hulk smash or Conan concepts. Two fo the four barbarians are magical which is incredibly dumb. The attack feats seem to be very underwhelming. Maybe they were just afraid of stepping on the fighter's space but polymporhing into a lycanthrope with weak attacks or becoming a large Ogre are not really my concepts of being a barbarian.


I think Barbarian comes together pretty nicely. Someone mentioned that Rage powers function out of combat but the fact is that you can rage for 3 out of every 4 rounds now so depending on the task at hand raging to over come exploration situations is pretty plausble.

The Anathema on the superstition totem is really hurts you though.


I like the giant totem for the massive damage boost (+4 at level one when using a d12 two hander). Sluggish 1 is super annoying but still puts you ahead on damage. The enlarge power seems to synergize poorly however.

Also the barbarian seems to be a class which gives you plenty of good choices at each level. While Cleave effects are situational you have the capacity to push folks to make it work. The damage pay off can be worth it though...

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

So I’m not sure if I’m interpreting this correctly… But with the Giant totem you gain the Titan Mauler ability. Which allows you to use a larger weapon like last edition, and you get a bonus to your conditional damage while raging. However, you gain sluggish 1 as well which adversely affects the character.
Am I correct in my calculations?

When Raging without larger weapon:
+2 Damage, -1 AC, +Temp HP

When Raging with Lager weapon:
+3 Damage, -2 AC, +Temp HP, -1 Dex Checks, -1 Reflex Saves.

I haven’t played this character yet and I’m assuming the choice to add the Sluggish 1 to the ability is for balancing however in the end I’m only getting an addition 1 to damage when all is said and done. I feel that you could have applied the slowed condition to this ability instead leaving the rage bonuses as they were would work better thematically. You would still get the +2 dam, but only have 2 actions a round.


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FireManed_Viking wrote:

So I’m not sure if I’m interpreting this correctly… But with the Giant totem you gain the Titan Mauler ability. Which allows you to use a larger weapon like last edition, and you get a bonus to your conditional damage while raging. However, you gain sluggish 1 as well which adversely affects the character.

Am I correct in my calculations?

When Raging without larger weapon:
+2 Damage, -1 AC, +Temp HP

When Raging with Lager weapon:
+3 Damage, -2 AC, +Temp HP, -1 Dex Checks, -1 Reflex Saves.

I haven’t played this character yet and I’m assuming the choice to add the Sluggish 1 to the ability is for balancing however in the end I’m only getting an addition 1 to damage when all is said and done. I feel that you could have applied the slowed condition to this ability instead leaving the rage bonuses as they were would work better thematically. You would still get the +2 dam, but only have 2 actions a round.

It doubles the rage bonus damage, so +4 damage. Where it gets confusing is some people are also adding in the large weapon change that was in a sidebar somewhere (I don't have my book on me). I do not think it gets that bonus.

Also, give back barbarians shields! I want my Viking raider.


Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber
FireManed_Viking wrote:

So I’m not sure if I’m interpreting this correctly… But with the Giant totem you gain the Titan Mauler ability. Which allows you to use a larger weapon like last edition, and you get a bonus to your conditional damage while raging. However, you gain sluggish 1 as well which adversely affects the character.

Am I correct in my calculations?

When Raging without larger weapon:
+2 Damage, -1 AC, +Temp HP

When Raging with Lager weapon:
+3 Damage, -2 AC, +Temp HP, -1 Dex Checks, -1 Reflex Saves.

I haven’t played this character yet and I’m assuming the choice to add the Sluggish 1 to the ability is for balancing however in the end I’m only getting an addition 1 to damage when all is said and done. I feel that you could have applied the slowed condition to this ability instead leaving the rage bonuses as they were would work better thematically. You would still get the +2 dam, but only have 2 actions a round.

You're mostly right, but the Sluggish penalty is on attack rolls, not damage rolls, so when raging with your big weapon its:

+4 damage, -1 attack, -2 AC, +temp HP, -1 Dex based checks, -1 Ref saves.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Thanks for the clarification.


Alex Mack wrote:
The enlarge power seems to synergize poorly however.

I'm pretty excited to play a giant totem barbarian who picks up a reach weapon and multiclasses fighter for AoO and combat reflexes. Since Barbarians are kind of a low-accuracy class I figure that "trying to hit extra times at -2" is a better thing to bank on than "trying to hit extra times at -5, -10, etc."

Plus whirlwind strike will be fun when you have 20' of reach.


I'm also building a giant totem barbarian, and I'm pretty worried about the lack of bonuses to attack rolls and the penalties that I'll be accruing. I know you get a lot of damage bonuses, but it's...not a great balance in my opinion.


Claxon wrote:
I'm also building a giant totem barbarian, and I'm pretty worried about the lack of bonuses to attack rolls and the penalties that I'll be accruing. I know you get a lot of damage bonuses, but it's...not a great balance in my opinion.

Good news is that these penalties do not stack!

Quote:
If you have more than one bonus or penalty of the same type, you use only the highest bonus or penalty.

So you could get Sluggish 1 from a hundred different sources, and it's still Sluggish 1. So you basically just take a -1 to everything to become huge.


I made my first barbarian tonight and I don't like it.
Shouldn't the barbarian have SURVIVAL as a class skill?!?
Unpopular opinion here, but I'm not a fan of the totems. It limits the class by forcing it into a semi-mystical mold. That seems at odds with barbarians. If we are talking about creating the same gaming experience as before 2e, this breaks it to pieces. Conan didn't channel any mystical totem, nor Fahfrd, Throngor, Thundar, Brak, Sonja, or any other barbarian found in fantasy literature that I can think of. I'd have liked it better as an option, not an unavoidable path.
That said, animal totem barbarians clawing and biting their way through dragons, zombies, and bullettes fights my suspension of disbelief with hardy gusto. It just seems goofy to me.
Also, the 1st level barbarian feats underwhelm. My barbarian was a Fury totem, and the selections left him flaccid.


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I figure for a more Conanish barbarian, just take the Fury totem. Like, that's what the fury totem is for.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

The first level barbarian feats are very underwhelming.

And wouldn't a giant totem barbarian get a +6 damage bonus when using a d12 weapon?

The size bonus for a large d12 weapon is +2 damage, add that to double the raging bonus for +6, plus your strength bonus.


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Does a Large weapon even add damage? I thought all titan mauler did was double your rage damage bonus if you're using a large weapon.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Lavieh wrote:


The Anathema on the superstition totem is really hurts you though.

The problem I have with the Superstition Totem is not just that it hurts you, but that it hurts your party.

I'll admit that I'm not a big fan of Anathema/Code-of-Coduct type rule mechanics for my own personal reasons, (I feel like it takes away player agency, and Individual GMs and Players ofttimes disagree on what things like alignment and violations of conduct mean, and, well, other reasons.)

That aside, this anathema leans on what the other party members can do and play; It's very difficult to play a cleric or a druid in a party where you know one player's character can't accept your healing spells. Grant you, there are channels for clerics and potions/elixirs in general, but it's still weighing down your party and their options.


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I also agree with others here that think the barbarian class chassis as a whole seems very underwhelming. The class feat choices at many levels generally feel both too weak and too few to choose from.

I really like the 3-round rage mechanic, but I believe the implementation needs work. I am not even convinced the rage mechanic itself is good as written. A small scaling damage bonus that does not increase already low accuracy versus losing 1 AC, not sold on that when considered with the rest of the class and its lack of survivability.

The totem mechanic itself I am fine with, but the individual totems and the abilities/feats they confer need a lot of work. This part of the critique could/should be a standalone topic if it has not been already.

I am ok with not being as proficient in weapons as a fighter, but not becoming expert until 13th level? That is ridiculous when fighters get master at 3 and legendary at 13. Rangers are expert at 3/master at 13. Even paladin which is supposed to be the tank class, get expert at 5/master at 15. IF rage bonus continues to not increase accuracy, this needs changed.

That brings me back to my main problem with the class right now. Barbs have a big problem staying alive to actually play. I think a lot of people that have played and love the barb class somewhat enjoy that aspect and find it fits thematically. The problem is with the way the new critical system works, hits that you used to take and absorb with barb HP become crits far too often. Raging resistance being lower than 9th would help, even if your totem has bad damage types.

In my playtest, I chose the Giant totem (like many) to try out. During play I was effectively playing with untrained armor AC at most times between rage's -1 and titan mauler's -1 and spent a lot of time down/dead. After that character was gone I rebuilt as both animal and fury totems to try them out, but the problem was still there. Maybe I had really bad luck and the GM just rolled 15+ a lot, but I have talked to others that had the same thing happen more than a few times.

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I liked the rage mechanic and totem mechanics (they are not powerful, but they worked ok in the playtest encounter environment). Lower AC really makes them heal-eaters, and considering how typical is low Resonance on a barbarian, they go to 0 RP with potions really fast. So right now barbarians look survival only with a cleric or another dedicated healer constantly covering their backs.

IMO, the barbarian badly needs Survival as signature skill and could be thematically good with other signature skill options such as Nature. Maybe totems should grant extra signature skill options, that would work.


Drakli wrote:

The problem I have with the Superstition Totem is not just that it hurts you, but that it hurts your party.

I'll admit that I'm not a big fan of Anathema/Code-of-Coduct type rule mechanics for my own personal reasons, (I feel like it takes away player agency, and Individual GMs and Players ofttimes disagree on what things like alignment and violations of conduct mean, and, well, other reasons.)

That aside, this anathema leans on what the other party members can do and play; It's very difficult to play a cleric or a druid in a party where you know one player's character can't accept your healing spells. Grant you, there are channels for clerics and potions/elixirs in general, but it's still weighing down your party and their options.

Worse than the cleric or druid, the Superstition Totem makes it feel almost impossible to have a bard in the party. All the bard songs are spells now, and the most common, Inspire Courage, is a large AoE effect. Unfortunately, the Superstitious barbarian wants nothing to do that or any other of the bard's tricks. There's probably ways to play around it, but it'd seem like a pretty miserable experience to me.


PossibleCabbage wrote:
Claxon wrote:
I'm also building a giant totem barbarian, and I'm pretty worried about the lack of bonuses to attack rolls and the penalties that I'll be accruing. I know you get a lot of damage bonuses, but it's...not a great balance in my opinion.

Good news is that these penalties do not stack!

Quote:
If you have more than one bonus or penalty of the same type, you use only the highest bonus or penalty.
So you could get Sluggish 1 from a hundred different sources, and it's still Sluggish 1. So you basically just take a -1 to everything to become huge.

Someone pointed this out to me in another thread, and I was happy to learn it.


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Kerobelis wrote:
FireManed_Viking wrote:

So I’m not sure if I’m interpreting this correctly… But with the Giant totem you gain the Titan Mauler ability. Which allows you to use a larger weapon like last edition, and you get a bonus to your conditional damage while raging. However, you gain sluggish 1 as well which adversely affects the character.

Am I correct in my calculations?

When Raging without larger weapon:
+2 Damage, -1 AC, +Temp HP

When Raging with Lager weapon:
+3 Damage, -2 AC, +Temp HP, -1 Dex Checks, -1 Reflex Saves.

I haven’t played this character yet and I’m assuming the choice to add the Sluggish 1 to the ability is for balancing however in the end I’m only getting an addition 1 to damage when all is said and done. I feel that you could have applied the slowed condition to this ability instead leaving the rage bonuses as they were would work better thematically. You would still get the +2 dam, but only have 2 actions a round.

It doubles the rage bonus damage, so +4 damage. Where it gets confusing is some people are also adding in the large weapon change that was in a sidebar somewhere (I don't have my book on me). I do not think it gets that bonus.

Also, give back barbarians shields! I want my Viking raider.

I am also a little confused as to why Barbarians are not trained in shields. In PF1 I always went two hander, because there was a 1.5x Str mod bonus, but now I would be keen to go with a shield. Esp for an Ulfen Raider type character. I suppose I will need to roll fighter for the same feeling, but without rage.

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