Welp, I guess it's time for me to stop playing casters then.


Classes

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If this edition goes through as is, even though I have been playing magic casters since the first edition of dungeons, I suppose I will have to stop. Might be the edition that actually has to stop me playing fantasy tabletop RPGS completely (and I have been playing for 29 years).

I am just in awe at the fact that even Paizo seems to be taking "balance" into account, as if Pathfinder had become some sort of MMORPG or Moba game where people whine that x is overpowered.

Summon monster? Gutted. Read the concentration rules. Good luck using making use of the summoned monster, and also enjoy the tasty one minute max duration.

Enchantment school? I mean... Not sure what to even say. It's gone.

Everything has a shorter duration or a lessened effect. And going with the "unlimited" cantrip as a sort of band aid is, in my opinion, a terrible imitation of the 5th edition.

I thought the objective of a new edition was to improve upon precedent work, like Pathfinder had with the sorry mess that was 3,5. Instead, they decide to radically change everything for the sake of changing. And they don't even simplify anything.

Numerous other things also flabbergast me - no more smite for paladins. Rangers looking... Well, less than useful to be polite. I suppose they will sell new books and that it will be sufficient to keep Paizo afloat for a new more years, but I am so disappoint by what I see, I honestly expected a lot more from such a great company.


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Not like we can’t keep playing the old game. Heck, Pathfinder was started because people didn’t want to stop playing a previous version. So, that will probably just happen again.


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"Not like we can keep playing the old game" Really?

Pathfinder was an IMPROVEMENT over 3,5. So far PF2 is not an improvement, just a change for the sake of change...


And a lot of people didn’t think 4th was an improvement over 3.x. If there is a market to support the old version, someone will feed the need.


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I agree there seems to be too much homogination between the classes and the result is a loss of many character classes. Wildshape is useless now, summon monster (not that powerful to begin with) is too bad to be viable, animal companion has been hamstrung and spells in general are far too weak compared to martial characters.


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Well, will have to agree here.

Im hoping the playtest will radicaly change the magic system, but if it doesnt, then honestly nothing else written in any 2.0 book matters to me.

I will not GM or even sit to play a 2.0 game that is for sure.

With this said, for said negative feedback to be given now when change can still come and hope still remains, i do advise playing the playtest and taking part in the surveys.


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I totally agree. The changes to spells so far seem very petty and poorly thought out. Needing to cast a 3rd level version of mage armor to get an approximation of mage armor as a PF1 spell is very bad. Protection from alignment spells are worthless. Shocking grasp, magic missile, guidance, sleep and monster summoning are worthless. No decent cleric ranged cantrips. Just sad

Its like all the designers did was listen to martials and even then they did very poor jobs with the ranger and barbarian. Its fighters and rogues all the time, every time. Meh....


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Do you really need a summoned monster to hang around for more than 10 rounds though?

And while the Concentrate action might take up 1 of your actions, you still get 2 other actions yourself, and 2 actions for the summoned creature, effectively giving you 4 actions per round.

But the whole point of this playtest is for thousands of non-Paizo people to play through the game as it is, figure out what doesn't work, what does, what doesn't feel right, and then refine things to try getting something that pleases the greatest number of people.

So play some casters during the playtest, get some actual experience in how spellcasters work (or don't work), instead of just "theorycrafting", and then provide your feedback based on what happened in the game sessions.


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I’m seeing a lot of flattening of spells, with them being stronger at first level and weaker at later levels. In pf1, summoning by spell is super limited at level 1, with a measly one round duration and not even coming into effect till the next round. In pf2, I can use my summon on the round I cast it and I can use it for 10 rounds, as long as I can maintain my concentration.

Mage armor may give a smaller bonus, but it lasts all day at level 1 now.


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Yeah, and a smaller AC bonus is more valuable in PF2.

This thread is rife with so much hyperbole I doubt it's honest.


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OP, if you're disappointed with the caster nerfs, I sure hope you don't look at any of the martial classes--lest you go from contemplating quitting the game to contemplating doing something drastic.

we've got feat taxes, we've got mediocre and overlimited class abilities, and now we've got class taxes--since if you want to be good with a weapon, you've gotta multiclass into fighter to access half the feats now.


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With regards to the actual thread, yeah they have viciously beaten casters with a nerf stick.

Monster HP is up (I compared trolls, owlbears and ogres - for those HP is up roughly 30...), and spell damage may even be slightly down - for example Chain Lightning does 7D12 (~14d6) vs 11-20d6 in PF1 (and in PF1 you could get damage boosters like blood havoc).

The save or lose spells have been beaten with sticks, for example, both baleful polymorph and dominate gets saves every melee round unless the initial save is a critcal fail.

Shapechanging effects look iffy, for example, when I look at the Avatar spell, I suspect that a 16th level fighter with level appropriate equipment can take that - and it's effectively the cleric capstone, can be used 1/day for 1 minute, while the fighter is cusinarting all day long...

Control spells like Slow and Stinking Cloud have been nerfed.

Summoning is gutted - round 1 your take 3 action to cast (your whole round -3 actions), and it doesn't act that round as you haven't concentrated. Round 2 you concentrate (cumulative -4 actions), and it acts twice (net -2 actions). Round 3, you concentrate again (-3 actions net and the monster takes 2 actions( -1 action net), Round 4 again concenration, and the monster takes 2 actions (0 actions net). Assuming your actions are more valuable than what you summon (afterall you summon creatures much lower in level than you), you need to get to turn 5 (with a maximum of 10!) before you do more than break even...

The utility spells are terrible now, as they are now supposed to be second rate to a character's skills. Also, durations and ranges have been hammered. Essentially nothing lasts more than a single fight now - no long term buffs.

With regards to cantrips as a balancing factor, they take 2 actions to cast vs attacking (with a sling say), have very short ranges, and their damage does not scale anywhere like a weapon damage does (due to magic adding dice).

I think they need to rethink their balancing act a lot. It is essentially impossible for a caster player to see themselves as "serious" mage, Gandalf/Dresden/Whomever , given how poorly their spells perform.


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pad300 wrote:
Snip

I mean to be fair, should a cleric be able to turn on a super mode that turns him from a caster into being better at fighting than a guy whose class is ABOUT fighting? I wouldn't think so.

Save or Dies are also honestly poor design in the first place.


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I'm fine wth ditching save or die spells. As treantmonk noted in his guide to the 5e wizard, the problem is that you either did everything, or nothing. In the new system, it still can be death on a crit fail, but they also do something on a normal fail, or even a normal success. That's one of the better changes to spellcasting imo.

A little story just to drive this point home, I was once in a pfs game where the party was fighting a brine dragon on the water plane. Our resources were mostly gone and we were definitely losing. However, I had a baleful polymorph left. I decided to give it a shot, and the dragon failed both saves and became a goldfish. It was then eaten by the party barbarian.

But what if the dragon had made the fort save and stayed a dragon? Well iirc I had one more, but the dragon probably could have killed us at that point.

Or I could have opened with baleful polymorph, in which case I would have either wasted my turn(between the SR and dragon saving throws, probably that), or taken the whole encounter for myself. My lodge tends to find those latter cases amusing, but some tables aren't so thrilled about the casters eating combats.

So that's why, as cool as it was, I'm happy to see the all or nothing save or dies evolve into a more all, some, or nothing kind of form.


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Corwin Icewolf wrote:

I'm fine wth ditching save or die spells. As treantmonk noted in his guide to the 5e wizard, the problem is that you either did everything, or nothing. In the new system, it still can be death on a crit fail, but they also do something on a normal fail, or even a normal success. That's one of the better changes to spellcasting imo.

A little story just to drive this point home, I was once in a pfs game where the party was fighting a brine dragon on the water plane. Our resources were mostly gone and we were definitely losing. However, I had a baleful polymorph left. I decided to give it a shot, and the dragon failed both saves and became a goldfish. It was then eaten by the party barbarian.

But what if the dragon had made the fort save and stayed a dragon? Well iirc I had one more, but the dragon probably could have killed us at that point.

Or I could have opened with baleful polymorph, in which case I would have either wasted my turn(between the SR and dragon saving throws, probably that), or taken the whole encounter for myself. My lodge tends to find those latter cases amusing, but some tables aren't so thrilled about the casters eating combats.

So that's why, as cool as it was, I'm happy to see the all or nothing save or dies evolve into a more all, some, or nothing kind of form.

the granularity for saves is one of the system changes from 2e that i actually quite like--it greatly increases the design space for effects of all stripes, not just casting

i also like that spellcasters can invest more actions into a spell to increase it's effects (or less if they need to keep on the move!), it and things like auto-heightening allow for a lot of control on the player side compared to 1e unchained's "all spells cost 2 actions" (with my exception being the sorcerer, who gets about 1/3rd the listed number of spells for their class from having to keep learning the same spell over and over, making this new flexiblity entirely wasted, especially next to the now incredibly flexible quick prep wizard). i'm even fine with them movign around the spell levels after adding level 10 to end up with a less spiky power curve for casters!

there's so much potential one can see in this system, but it's all mired in too many limitations and uninteresting or needlessly confusing choices.


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Andarr wrote:
I am just in awe at the fact that even Paizo seems to be taking "balance" into account, as if Pathfinder had become some sort of MMORPG or Moba game where people whine that x is overpowered.

I'm sorry, but this is actually important to a lot of people (my group included). The fact you are complaining about the worst spells in PF1e gives me a lot of hope that things will be better in PF2e.


If you want this to be a conversation on the need for balance in TTRPG, which is far from a foreign concept to the genre, I'd be glad to dive into that.

But you can't have that conversation simultaneously with specific design choices on spellcasting because each one of them may or may not have merit in its own, perhaps related to balance, perhaps related to something else.

But if you want to talk exclusively about whether balance is necessary in tabletop games, I'd be glad to hop into that conversation.


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Its amazing to me considering Pathfinders origins how much worse than 4E PF2 feels. So many restrictions and so many things ruined in the name of "balance".

Let me give you an example. My favorite character is a necromancer/warrior who uses a whip and a shield while mounted. I like the idea of a terrifying master of the undead riding proud amongst his minions. Now in PF2, he has to spend 1 action to ride his horse (with a feat), 1 action to use his shield, and 1 action to command his 1 skeleton I guess. No actions left to actually use his whip, and no way to have more than 3 skeletons ever, and even commanding 1 hes never actually using his whip or making intimidate checks or anything. I might as well just have him on the ground with no weapons commanding 3. Even the whip if I could use it is completely useless with its 1d4 damage and no reach because reach 10 weapons have no reach when used from horseback now.

I will never play PF2 released as it is now, or anything close to as it is now.


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I think it's honestly much more likely that I play a full caster in PF2 than I play one in PF1. Just the whole "cantrips don't suck anymore" is a huge thing for me.


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Andarr wrote:
What do you care about what magic users do? Unless you have a personal dislike for them, that is.

Because I like everyone to be able to contribute equally. Not have the caster contribute and everyone else sits back while they take care of everything (this has happened with the PF1e APG Summoner which was a caster).

Let's look at the Crossbow Ranger with a +5 crossbow. It actually looks viable this edition.

Ranger deals 5d12+2 damage on a hit (34.5 damage)

Let's go with our favourite Evocation Wizard at 20th level. He's got:
Acid Splash (Cantrip): 5d4+6+5 per round (18.5 damage + 5 damage per round)
8th level Acid Arrow: 4d8 damage + 4d6 per round (18 + 14 per round = 32 in first round, 14 every round it persists thereafter)
7th level fireball: 10d6 (35 damage to all foes, or 80.5 damage assuming 2.3 enemies in the area).

That PF2e Wizard, by the way, has all of his spells at the highest DC possible making his lower level slots more valuable then a PF1e wizard. If he prepared 7th level fireballs in all of his 8th level spell slots, he's getting to deal between 35 damage (if against a single target) to 80.5 damage (if around 2.3 targets) per round for 6 rounds (thanks to the Wizard's 20th level class feature). If he does the same with his 7th level spell slots that's 12 spells where he is between equal to the Ranger and surpassing the ranger by 2.3 times damage.

Now is this wizard the god wizard of PF1e/3.5e? No. But he's every bit as effective as the ranger, PLUS a whole bunch of other spell slots he can spend on utility and defences. Also this wizard has 0 magic items and the ranger has a +5 weapon. I think the wizard is going to work out just fine myself.

Andarr wrote:
I don't understand the need to so uncommon and rare spells.

It's to give the DM tools to limit what casters can and can't get (but it's an optional tool he doesn't have to use).

Andarr wrote:
I don't understand the giant nerf to everything magic related. I mean... I need to use one of my actions AND concentration to use a summoned monster? Really? Guess you just want to make sure no one ever uses one then.

Okay, this I don't understand. It's got a 1 round casting time in PF1e. That is effectively the same as 3 actions and it doesn't act until the 2nd round. Yes, you need to spend 1 action per round to keep the summoned creature around. This means you can only have 1 summoned creature on the battlefield at once and still cast spells. Is that really so bad? How many summoned monsters do you clutter the battlefield with?

Andarr wrote:
I thought this was Pathfinder 2.0, not D&D 5.1.

Based on your concerns anything less than the god wizard of 3.5e wasn't going to be good enough.

Andarr wrote:
Right now I would rather play 5.0 than Pathfinder 2.0, and I never expected to say that.

I'd heartily recommend playing the playtest, give all of your feedback in every venue you can and then see what the end result is before deciding whether to play.

Andarr wrote:
Again, the concept of balance is foreign to a tabletop RPG.

This has never been true. Level limits for demihumans was meant to balance them. Multiclassing penalties was meant to act as a balancing factor. Fighters getting stupidly good saves and wizard's having limited hit points was meant to balance them.

Just because these rules failed to one degree or another to balance them doesn't mean balance wasn't an issue.


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wait, what fighters have had "stupidly good saves"? in what edition?


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Casters are used to driving a Ferrari, and are losing their minds because Paizo has told them to follow the speed limit.

Meanwhile the rest of us are in a horse-drawn buggy, and they just took our horse.


AndIMustMask wrote:
wait, what fighters have had "stupidly good saves"? in what edition?

question marks in quote may be larger than they appear. From my understanding 1st edition d&d didn't even have saves. 2nd edition d&d saves worked too differently to even bother comparing. In 3.0, 3.5 and pathfinder the fighter's only good save was fort, and frankly it could've used good reflex and some would argue even will saves as well, but it definitely needed more than one good save. That is not stupidly good at all.

I don't know what their saves were in 4th, but if I recall correctly in fifth edition they have proficiency in con and strength saves, So I would also like very much to know what edition we're talking about here.


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Some counter-examples to challenge your statements:

Andarr wrote:


Summon monster? Gutted. Read the concentration rules. Good luck using making use of the summoned monster, and also enjoy the tasty one minute max duration.

EFFORTLESS CONCENTRATION -level 14

Free action - Trigger Your turn begins.
You immediately gain the effects of a Concentrate on a Spell action to extend the duration of one of your active wizard spells.

Solves your summon monster concentration problem. But only from level 14+. And for Wizards and Sorcerers. Clerics, Druids and Bards look to have no way to avoid the action cost of controlling a summoned monster.

Andarr wrote:


Enchantment school? I mean... Not sure what to even say. It's gone.

Wizard, page 138:

Enchantment school.
As an enchanter, you use magic to manipulate the minds of your victims. You might use your abilities to subtly influence others or seize total control over them. You add
one 1st-level enchantment spell (such as charm) to your spellbook. You learn the charming words school power (see page 210), which you can cast at a cost of 1 Spell Point.

And the feat:

DREAD AURA FEAT 8
Prerequisites enchantment arcane school
You gain the dread aura school power (see page 219), which you can cast at a cost of 2 Spell Points. Increase your Spell Point pool by 2.

Andarr wrote:


Everything has a shorter duration or a lessened effect.

MAGE ARMOR SPELL 1

Duration 1 day
You ward yourself with shimmering magical energy, gaining a +1 item bonus to AC. While wearing mage armor, you use your unarmored proficiency to calculate your AC
Heightened (2nd) The bonus increases to +2, and you gain a +1 item bonus to saving throws.

Thats a longer duration and increased effect over PF1.


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Yossarian wrote:

Some counter-examples to challenge your statements:

Andarr wrote:


Summon monster? Gutted. Read the concentration rules. Good luck using making use of the summoned monster, and also enjoy the tasty one minute max duration.

EFFORTLESS CONCENTRATION -level 14

Free action - Trigger Your turn begins.
You immediately gain the effects of a Concentrate on a Spell action to extend the duration of one of your active wizard spells.

Solves your summon monster concentration problem. But only from level 14+.

Andarr wrote:


Enchantment school? I mean... Not sure what to even say. It's gone.

Wizard, page 138:

Enchantment school.
As an enchanter, you use magic to manipulate the minds of your victims. You might use your abilities to subtly influence others or seize total control over them. You add
one 1st-level enchantment spell (such as charm) to your spellbook. You learn the charming words school power (see page 210), which you can cast at a cost of 1 Spell Point.

And the feat:

DREAD AURA FEAT 8
Prerequisites enchantment arcane school
You gain the dread aura school power (see page 219), which you can cast at a cost of 2 Spell Points. Increase your Spell Point pool by 2.

Andarr wrote:


Everything has a shorter duration or a lessened effect.

MAGE ARMOR SPELL 1

Duration 1 day
You ward yourself with shimmering magical energy, gaining a +1 item bonus to AC. While wearing mage armor, you use your unarmored proficiency to calculate your AC
Heightened (2nd) The bonus increases to +2, and you gain a +1 item bonus to saving throws.

Thats a longer duration and increased effect over PF1.

oh hey level 14, isnt that like, a level after most pathfinder adventures end?


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AndIMustMask wrote:
oh hey level 14, isnt that like, a level after most pathfinder adventures end?

It's almost like being able to summon a strong, expendable mook no matter where you are with no downsides is a powerful ability.


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AndIMustMask wrote:
[oh hey level 14, isnt that like, a level after most pathfinder adventures end?

It's my understanding that this version is designed to go up to 20 properly, not start to seize up at higher levels. Pathfinder 2 adventures should be ending at level 20, in other words.

But sure, an argument for making the level requirement for that feat lower could be made. Same as an argument that other summoning caster classes should get access to it.

Maintaining concentration as a free action is pretty powerful however, so it's going to have knock-on effects.


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Someone said summon monster summons can’t act when first being cast but that isn’t true.
Page 195, “When you finish casting the spell and when you spend an action to Concentrate on the Spell, the summoned creature then takes its 2 actions. ”

So the creature gets its actions when first summoned, and then when you use concentration on following rounds.


AndIMustMask wrote:
wait, what fighters have had "stupidly good saves"? in what edition?

D&D pre 3.0 (e.g. ad&d 2e)


Melkiador wrote:

Someone said summon monster summons can’t act when first being cast but that isn’t true.

Page 195, “When you finish casting the spell and when you spend an action to Concentrate on the Spell, the summoned creature then takes its 2 actions. ”

So the creature gets its actions when first summoned, and then when you use concentration on following rounds.

It was the OP who said that. So it's a straight buff to the spell in the first round at the cost of 1 action every round thereadter. Seems even more fair


AndIMustMask wrote:
wait, what fighters have had "stupidly good saves"? in what edition?

Fathfinder

Fortitude: always good
Will: Armed Bravery - Bravery to Will
Reflex: Fighter's Reflexes - Weapon Training Bonus to Reflexes

If you build for Trained Grace, Reflex is the fighter's best save while Fortitude and Will come out about the same.

A fighter in PF1 has the feats and tools to be whatever you choose to build him to be.


Volkard Abendroth wrote:
AndIMustMask wrote:
wait, what fighters have had "stupidly good saves"? in what edition?

Fathfinder

Fortitude: always good
Will: Armed Bravery - Bravery to Will
Reflex: Fighter's Reflexes - Weapon Training Bonus to Reflexes

If you build for Trained Grace, Reflex is the fighter's best save while Fortitude and Will come out about the same.

A fighter in PF1 has the feats and tools to be whatever you choose to build him to be.

I had to look up armed bravery and fighter's reflexes. Neither are in a main book and neither are available till level 9, So not everyone is gonna even know about them.


John Lynch 106 wrote:
Melkiador wrote:

Someone said summon monster summons can’t act when first being cast but that isn’t true.

Page 195, “When you finish casting the spell and when you spend an action to Concentrate on the Spell, the summoned creature then takes its 2 actions. ”

So the creature gets its actions when first summoned, and then when you use concentration on following rounds.

It was the OP who said that. So it's a straight buff to the spell in the first round at the cost of 1 action every round thereadter. Seems even more fair

The creatures seem to be more accurate too. A PF1 creature from SM1 doesn't get much more than +3 to its attacks, but the PF2 creatures get an average of +5 with the animated broom getting +7. That broom is pretty strong too, with a secondary effect to its attacks that can cause the target to lose an action on its next turn.


Melkiador wrote:

Someone said summon monster summons can’t act when first being cast but that isn’t true.

Page 195, “When you finish casting the spell and when you spend an action to Concentrate on the Spell, the summoned creature then takes its 2 actions. ”

So the creature gets its actions when first summoned, and then when you use concentration on following rounds.

So, for better clarity, if they do want this on the first round cast and ever round concentrated, this should read as OR instead of AND.

“When you finish casting the spell and when you spend an action to Concentrate on the Spell, the summoned creature then takes its 2 actions. ”

This states that both parts must be true, since it is using an and.

Thisking it over more, OR probably wouldn't be as good as using AS WELL AS.


Part of the wording is because the summon now acts as part of your turn. It doesn’t have its own initiative. So, when you finish the cast or when you concentrate is when the creature acts, and when the creature is done, your turn continues.

So you could move, concentrate(at which point the summon takes its two actions), then strike.

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