Why bother with an alchemist over a fire cleric? The alchemist is bad.


Classes


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It is my belief that alchemists are the weakest class in the game. They lack the raw at-will damage output of martial classes. They lack the flexibility, toolboxes, combat utility, noncombat utility, and narrative power of true spellcasters. Their bombs are pathetic for damage (e.g. 1d8 damage alchemist's fire or 1d6 damage bottled lightning at 1st level), their healing is laughable compared to actual healing spells (e.g. 1d6 healing minor elixirs of life at 1st level), their other alchemical items' overall combat utility and noncombat utility are shabby for their level, and they burn through all of their Resonance. I saw a 1st-level alchemist and a 1st-level cleric in play in the same party, and the alchemist was sorely outclassed even by the cleric who did not get to use their Spell Points.

Before anyone else brings it up, no, 2e's persistent damage is greatly overrated against monsters and NPCs, which have a terribly short lifespan in combat encounters. 2e's persistent damage is a great hassle when PCs suffer it, but it is much less of a bother for the monsters and NPCs of transient existence in battle.

Perhaps a good point of comparison would be a fire cleric, which fulfills the same overall role: party support, healing (ideally outside of combat), and the occasional direct damage shot against touch AC.

Taking into account no class feats, here is healing at non-capstone breakpoints in the alchemist's favor. This compares the alchemist's elixir of life to the cleric's 3 + Charisma modifier daily uses of the positive energy pool, assuming an optimal Wisdom modifier for the cleric:
• 1st level: Alchemist's minor elixir of life for 1d6 (average 3.5) vs. cleric's single target heal for 1d8+4 (average 8.5) or party-wide heal for 4
• 4th level: Alchemist's lesser elixir of life for 3d6 (average 10.5) vs. cleric's single target heal for 3d8+4 (average 17.5) or party-wide heal for 1d8+4 (average 8.5)
• 8th level: Alchemist's elixir of life for 7d6 (average 24.5) vs. cleric's single target heal for 7d8+4 (average 35.5) or party-wide heal for 3d8+4 (average 17.5)
• 12th level: Alchemist's greater elixir of life for 10d6 (average 35) vs. cleric's single target heal for 11d8+5 (average 54.5) or party-wide heal for 5d8+5 (average 27.5)
• 16th level: Alchemist's true elixir of life for 14d6 (average 49) vs. cleric's single target heal for 13d8+6 (average 64.5) or party-wide heal for 7d8+6 (average 37.5)

Also taking into account no class feats, here is blasting an enemy with fire damage, also at breakpoints in the alchemist's favor. This compares alchemist's fire (range 20 feet before class feats) to the cleric's fire ray (range 60 feet).
• 1st level: Alchemist's fire for 1d8 (average 4.5) and persistent 1 and splash 1 vs. the cleric's fire ray for 1d6+4 (average 7.5)
• 3rd level: Alchemist's fire for 2d8 (average 9) and persistent 2 and splash 1 vs. the cleric's fire ray for 2d6+4 (average 11)
• 7th level: Alchemist's fire for 3d8 (average 13.5) and persistent 3 and splash 1 vs. the cleric's fire ray for 4d6+4 (average 18)
• 11th level: Alchemist's fire for 4d8 (average 18) and persistent 4 and splash 1 vs. the cleric's fire ray for 6d6+4 (average 25)
• 14th level: Alchemist's fire for 5d8 (average 22.5) and persistent 5 and splash 1 vs. the cleric's fire ray for 7d6+4 (average 28.5)
• 17th level: Alchemist's fire for 6d8 (average 27) and persistent 6 and splash 1 vs. the cleric's fire ray for 9d6+4 (average 35.5)

Now, you might be thinking, "Oh, alchemists still have a leg up over fire clerics, because alchemists can generate a massive quantity of alchemical items!" While that is true, the issue there is that the mass production costs the alchemist's Resonance Points, which means they hardly get to use magic items. Meanwhile, clerics do not just have a positive energy pool or Spell Points; clerics have honest-to-goodness spell slots that generate far more of an impact than the vast majority of the alchemist's dinky creations. While an alchemist has to pay for formulae for marginally useful alchemical items, the cleric simply prays for access to their entire spell list.

A 1st-level alchemist can buff a fellow party member with a cheetah's elixir for +5 speed for one minute. A 1st-level cleric can buff a party frontliner with magic weapon for a +1 magic weapon for a minute, and we all know how strong those are. A cleric of Sarenrae can toss out fireballs. And no alchemical item can stand up to the narrative utility of spells like talking corpse or sending.

And another damning thing about the alchemist? While a cleric can prepare uncommon spells if they have campaign permission, alchemists cannot do so even with campaign permission, because their Advanced Alchemy and Quick Alchemy class features do not function on uncommon items. They cannot even craft mutagens using Advanced Alchemy. That is horrid.

Either the alchemist is underpowered, the cleric is overpowered with too many resources to spare, or both.


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Alchemist is atm the worst off class by far.
Then it's the ranger

And then there are the rest of the classes that have more specific problems (like paladin only having 1 archetype available, sorcs being outdone by wizards, etc)

Wizards, clerics and bards are the most solid options, followed by rogue imo.

So comparing one of the best classes (cleric) vs the worst class (alchemist) will obviously show some ugly unbalanced issues.


Alchemists can throw multiple bombs per round. It's not much, but better than nothing. Not saying they are competitive by any means, though.


Blave wrote:
Alchemists can throw multiple bombs per round. It's not much, but better than nothing. Not saying they are competitive by any means, though.

It takes a class feat to draw two bombs with one Interact action, and even then, that still leaves the character immobile when they throw the two bombs with such a limited range.


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I normally defend the weakest classes and play them to prove they're not weak. I do this all the time with 5e.

I came into PF2 wanting to try the alchemist - I never played one in PF1, mostly because by the time it came out I was the main DM. As a toxicologist and chemist, I really wanted to play a class that could buff, debuff, heal, and harm all using chemicals and non-magical creations. So the alchemist was looking like it would be the class for me.

I cannot dispute anything the OP has said. It's all correct.

This is a poorly designed class that is lacking in every single area of the game compared to other classes, and in the areas where it could shine (such as buffing allies) it costs double what it should cost compared to other buffs.

I'm saddened and I hope it gets fixed for the main release.

Things that could be done to fix it:

• Remove RP cost to make/use alchemical items; this applies to both the alchemist and general crafting. Exception: Quick Alchemy.
• Make all alchemical items cost SP instead of GP (don't change the number, just the units).
• State that the Mutagen ability at level 5 allows the alchemist to make uncommon alchemical items.
• Have the alchemist be able to make consistent chemicals to do damage output of other ranged weapons and cantrips to give a flavor of always being able to use alchemiy in combat.
• Increase the damage output of higher level items to match spells of equivalent level, perhaps slightly less (10-20%) due to persistent damage.
• Have healing elixirs do persistent healing to make up for the smaller healing values.
• Allow the alchmist to change the Method of Exposure for all alchemical items (Injury, Touch, Ingest, Inhale)
• Allow the alchmist to improve upon the DCs of alchemical items as a Spellcasters does. Especially important for buffing Ally's weapons with injury poisons. Currently costs a feat to make this happen.

There may be others.


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A couple things about Alchemist that is being missed i think:

- If Alchemist items didn't need resonance you wouldn't have cha most likely so you get up to 4 "free" resonance for your alchemist items.

- When you create items for the day you get 2 for elixirs/bombs/poison and you can create up to 10 in the beginning that don't cost you resonance later(for elixirs). With this at level 4 your healing is better per resonance on yourself which drops at level 5 and at 8th+ you can heal yourself more per point.

- You can try to create an alchemist item with no resonance using quick alchemy and still use it if it's an elixir.

- With up to 10 free bombs a day the cleric gets 4 uses compared to your 10 and they have to use 2 actions per cast so no doing 2 attacks in 1 turn.

- If you decide to focus on mutagen damage instead at low level you have LOTS of healing and an elixir that makes your unarmed deal 1d6 for 1 hour

- When you get access to mutagen that is the first level you should be capable of finding +2 weapons and you have a mutagen that makes you have equivalent of +2 for 1 minute.

- You CAN create MUTAGENS with ADVANCED ALCHEMY if it's at the beginning of the day. Also giving mutagens to your monk or animal barbarian is quite strong as well if they haven't gotten an equivalent weapon yet.

- If you get prepared before combat you can have poisons prepared to apply to weapons that could potentially add quite a bit of damage if combat doesn't end immediately.

- Bottled lightning and Tanglefoot bags seem to be useful even at higher levels for the ability to make someone flatfooted or entangled. I don't think this is worth the trade off but the chance to hit on your 2nd attack goes down quite a bit if they're your level or higher anyways.


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I do like Bookrats suggestion for alchemists to have persistent healing effects, would be an interestingly niche support slot and also mirror their bombs that deal persistent damage. Be the DOT and HOT class.


Darres147 wrote:

A couple things about Alchemist that is being missed i think:

- If Alchemist items didn't need resonance you wouldn't have cha most likely so you get up to 4 "free" resonance for your alchemist items.

- When you create items for the day you get 2 for elixirs/bombs/poison and you can create up to 10 in the beginning that don't cost you resonance later(for elixirs). With this at level 4 your healing is better per resonance on yourself which drops at level 5 and at 8th+ you can heal yourself more per point.

- You can try to create an alchemist item with no resonance using quick alchemy and still use it if it's an elixir.

- With up to 10 free bombs a day the cleric gets 4 uses compared to your 10 and they have to use 2 actions per cast so no doing 2 attacks in 1 turn.

- If you decide to focus on mutagen damage instead at low level you have LOTS of healing and an elixir that makes your unarmed deal 1d6 for 1 hour

- When you get access to mutagen that is the first level you should be capable of finding +2 weapons and you have a mutagen that makes you have equivalent of +2 for 1 minute.

- You CAN create MUTAGENS with ADVANCED ALCHEMY if it's at the beginning of the day. Also giving mutagens to your monk or animal barbarian is quite strong as well if they haven't gotten an equivalent weapon yet.

- If you get prepared before combat you can have poisons prepared to apply to weapons that could potentially add quite a bit of damage if combat doesn't end immediately.

- Bottled lightning and Tanglefoot bags seem to be useful even at higher levels for the ability to make someone flatfooted or entangled. I don't think this is worth the trade off but the chance to hit on your 2nd attack goes down quite a bit if they're your level or higher anyways.

-what are you basically saying here is that (since everyone gets level to their RP level) is that alchemist gain Only 4 (int) RP to use every single of their features. That's what we're also saying. It's far too little.

-that works for lower levels. Later on, every single Class feat requires Quick Alchemy (extends, potent, debilitating, sticky, etcetcetc)

-Raw, you can't. But that's obviously a typo (you just gain them in Your formula book, but both advanced and quick have language that they are for common only)

-have fun having your main mechanic being a 50%- chance roll with no way to change it (flat rolls, yuk)

-prepared poisons use poison DC which is lower than class DC. EVERY SINGLE OTHER class gets automatically scaling DCs. Also, you always stay "trained" in every item you make. Even a legendary alchemist still has (level+0) as his class DC. While EVERY SINGLE OTHER class gets expert /master/legendary to their DCs.

-A cleric has both Powers And Spells. Plus at will scaling cantrips. The alchemist has nothing for a sustained battle.

-for the tradeoff of much lower damage and they only apply to main target, not even in the splash.


- 8 "free" alchemical items at the cost of your RP you got(this is in comparison to people saying it shouldn't cost RP and RP wouldn't help alch much). This goes to 10 if you use your level 1 point as well which can be applied to elixirs that don't cost you more points to use aka you can heal yourself 10d6 damage at level 1 or more if you're lucky with your roles.

- The Quick Alchemy use feats show up at level 6 and would still technically be accessible with 0 RP if you don't fail your check but as far as I could tell there isn't much use for RP outside of spell casters, there's a few bonuses but not a lot so just save a couple points for these abilities if you want and use the rest for preparations. And at level 9 you gain 1/2 your level for use in quick alchemy anyways so now you could now make 28 alchemical bombs at the start of the day doing 3x damage and whatever feats you've taken in addition to having a few enhanced ones(obviously you'd save more points for quick alchemy).

-Poisons DC is only 1 or 2 lower at most levels and only at level 12 do spell casters become expert while an Alchemist can take a class feat to allow it to use your class DC(if made using advanced alchemy) at level 8 and poisons are an additional damage thing that you could pass around to other people(doesn't take RP) and mostly only useful for before combat but I don't see anything regarding a time limit on how long it's useful after application but that's probably just an oversight.

I'm not really trying to say Alch is good compared to other classes but a lot of what was being said here is looking at things one sided.

A fighter looks at a wizard/sorc and wonders why he can't do so much damage(with one attack).

A wizard/sorc looks at a fighter and wonders why he can't do as much damage(in one round)


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Darres147 wrote:

- 8 "free" alchemical items at the cost of your RP you got(this is in comparison to people saying it shouldn't cost RP and RP wouldn't help alch much). This goes to 10 if you use your level 1 point as well which can be applied to elixirs that don't cost you more points to use aka you can heal yourself 10d6 damage at level 1 or more if you're lucky with your roles.

- The Quick Alchemy use feats show up at level 6 and would still technically be accessible with 0 RP if you don't fail your check but as far as I could tell there isn't much use for RP outside of spell casters, there's a few bonuses but not a lot so just save a couple points for these abilities if you want and use the rest for preparations. And at level 9 you gain 1/2 your level for use in quick alchemy anyways so now you could now make 28 alchemical bombs at the start of the day doing 3x damage and whatever feats you've taken in addition to having a few enhanced ones(obviously you'd save more points for quick alchemy).

-Poisons DC is only 1 or 2 lower at most levels and only at level 12 do spell casters become expert while an Alchemist can take a class feat to allow it to use your class DC(if made using advanced alchemy) at level 8 and poisons are an additional damage thing that you could pass around to other people(doesn't take RP) and mostly only useful for before combat but I don't see anything regarding a time limit on how long it's useful after application but that's probably just an oversight.

I'm not really trying to say Alch is good compared to other classes but a lot of what was being said here is looking at things one sided.

A fighter looks at a wizard/sorc and wonders why he can't do so much damage(with one attack).

A wizard/sorc looks at a fighter and wonders why he can't do as much damage(in one round)

The thing is 10d6 self healing isn't that impressive if that's all you'll be doing in a day. In fact, with just 12 Cha, a cleric heals for that much just with his channel. And he still has all of his cantrips and spells. In addition he can also heal others without wasting like 4 actions and their RP.

Again, you keep multiplying things by 2 and forgetting magical items as well.

The very game guidelines point that you have around 6 magical items from level 5+. And while those guidelines are indeed excessive, you have at minimum 2 invested items at level 5,and around 4+ at level 8+.

Almost all worthwhile magic items do require even more RP.

At level 8,at average, you spend 5-6 RP just for the items you have.

So, even at level 9 that you get "extra" RP you're just looking at something like 11 RP for your abilities, 4 of which are only for quick.

If you're a poison based build you'll want potent Alchemy for DCs either way, because even though when you get them DCs are on average 2 less than class DC THEY DON'T SCALE AT All. So, your low level recipes are useless (low level spells and powers keep scaling, poisons, don't)

If you're a bomb build, you want debilitating bomb.

Both the above require Quick Alchemy ONLY.

So.

Out of your 11 leftover RP, making 2 healing potions, 2 utility potions and 2 mutagens, means that you have 8 "damage" options/day.

Bombs do about weapon damage (at level 3 you get +1 weapon, bombs add a die, level 7 you get +2,bombs get +1,and etc). They could make bombs an "at will" ability and it still would be in line with other classes.

So, you're basically doing equal damage to the party for 8 rounds/day.

It really Is that terrible. Forget 3 encounter days, we're entering 1 encounter day with alchemist...

Grand Lodge

About the ONLY thing I can see that the Alchemist has over the Cleric, or any spellcaster for that matter, is that they can operate in a magic dead zone. Heck, ALL of the classes get nerfed in a magic dead zone, the magic sword the fighter had is now a regular sword (of at least expert quality mind you), the Rogue's cloak of Elvenkind is now a regular cloak (but it looks nice), etc, but the Alchemist can keep throwing bombs and healing companions.

After all, Alchemy is non-magical.

That said: how many magic dead areas do you expect to run into?

So yeah, overall, Alchemists need an overhaul.


Culach wrote:

About the ONLY thing I can see that the Alchemist has over the Cleric, or any spellcaster for that matter, is that they can operate in a magic dead zone. Heck, ALL of the classes get nerfed in a magic dead zone, the magic sword the fighter had is now a regular sword (of at least expert quality mind you), the Rogue's cloak of Elvenkind is now a regular cloak (but it looks nice), etc, but the Alchemist can keep throwing bombs and healing companions.

After all, Alchemy is non-magical.

That said: how many magic dead areas do you expect to run into?

So yeah, overall, Alchemists need an overhaul.

is it nonmagical though?

Resonance feels very magical to me.

The first sentence of its description is actually :

Quote:

Resonance Points

Your innate ability to use magic items is represented
by a pool of Resonance Points (RP).

Which is why it doesn't actually make sense that alchemical items require RP at all.


I do agree Bombs are on the weak side but that's one part of the class and they do extra die damage without needing a weapon at the levels you get them and with ranged attacks in general you're getting the same damage out of them so it's like you've found 2 +1 weapons at level 3, which can be used 8 times a day.

Alchemist has the problem of being weaker then other classes at some levels and being on par with them without needing items at others IF you only look at bombs.

Level 5 you get to pretend to have +2 unarmed weapon with an elixir that last an hour making it 1d6 which is the best an agile weapon can do..It doesn't make it lethal damage according to the rules which isn't actually a problem as far as I can tell since not even undead seem to immune to it anymore.

This is a lot of prep to be doing the same damage as others but like I said it's without being allocated one of the few high level items in the party.

Oh yeah and debilitating bomb only has one effect I'd care about really and thats the dazzled because I can just make lightning bombs that make em flat footed and i can double up on those easily enough. By the time you get the greater debilitating bomb you have 5 points to use for it for free(I'd argue 10 at this point since you're int is 20 and cha could still be 10)


Darres147 wrote:

I do agree Bombs are on the weak side but that's one part of the class and they do extra die damage without needing a weapon at the levels you get them and with ranged attacks in general you're getting the same damage out of them so it's like you've found 2 +1 weapons at level 3, which can be used 8 times a day.

Alchemist has the problem of being weaker then other classes at some levels and being on par with them without needing items at others IF you only look at bombs.

Level 5 you get to pretend to have +2 unarmed weapon with an elixir that last an hour making it 1d6 which is the best an agile weapon can do..It doesn't make it lethal damage according to the rules which isn't actually a problem as far as I can tell since not even undead seem to immune to it anymore.

This is a lot of prep to be doing the same damage as others but like I said it's without being allocated one of the few high level items in the party.

Oh yeah and debilitating bomb only has one effect I'd care about really and thats the dazzled because I can just make lightning bombs that make em flat footed and i can double up on those easily enough. By the time you get the greater debilitating bomb you have 5 points to use for it for free(I'd argue 10 at this point since you're int is 20 and cha could still be 10)

Mutagen at level 5 lasts 1 minute, not 1 hour.

Mutagen also has 3 round onset. So you lose half the battle before it even takes effect. It's also worse than +2 item because it gives penalties alongside the bonuses.

Save bonus on mutagens are 100% redundant since all magical armors give save bonus to All saves either way.

Erc


I agree right now the alchemist is pretty bad. It's going to need some core changes to make it better. Like not just damage, but like onset times for poisons are horrid and they need rework on how they use resonance for alchemical. Once they run out of resonance and alchemical bombs they are pretty much commoner. This is a playtest so this is the opportunity for people to voice there concerns and paizo to look at each class and see if they are operating at where they should be.


Mutagen at level 5 last a minute with the next round onset, kind of like having to rage but it happens next turn again though when +2 weapons are still rare

the hour long elixir I lumped in with it as well changes your damage to 1d6 for an hour and is level 1 which lets you do 3d6+str at level 5

level 7 you get 3d8 + 3 ongoing damage fire bombs

level 9 you get 10 minute mutagen and if you take feral mutagen don't need the elixir to increase die type anymore although this is when you need to use it before hand to get the boost if you don't grab fast onset at level 6 (mutagens do indeed have the elixir trait)

Still it feels like the class needs some love but I feel that way about any sorc who goes for divine or occult spells.


Darres147 wrote:

Mutagen at level 5 last a minute with the next round onset, kind of like having to rage but it happens next turn again though when +2 weapons are still rare

the hour long elixir I lumped in with it as well changes your damage to 1d6 for an hour and is level 1 which lets you do 3d6+str at level 5

level 7 you get 3d8 + 3 ongoing damage fire bombs

level 9 you get 10 minute mutagen and if you take feral mutagen don't need the elixir to increase die type anymore although this is when you need to use it before hand to get the boost if you don't grab fast onset at level 6 (mutagens do indeed have the elixir trait)

Still it feels like the class needs some love but I feel that way about any sorc who goes for divine or occult spells.

It doesn't happen on next round.

It happens on the END of next round.

So, round 1,draw and drink (2 actions)
Round 2...Wait
Round 3 now you have it active. Yippie

It's effectively 3 round onset

Fast onset is basically a feat tax that serves no other purpose than being a feat tax (offers 0 others benefits) and in reality reads: "you can either use mutagens or bombs" because level 6 is also the precise bombs class feat.

As a comparison, with the same 2 actions, a caster can quicken someone and give him 1 whole free attack/round for the same duration as a mutagen. By the time the mutagen is active, the recipient already has 3 extra free actions.

Grand Lodge

shroudb wrote:
Culach wrote:

About the ONLY thing I can see that the Alchemist has over the Cleric, or any spellcaster for that matter, is that they can operate in a magic dead zone. Heck, ALL of the classes get nerfed in a magic dead zone, the magic sword the fighter had is now a regular sword (of at least expert quality mind you), the Rogue's cloak of Elvenkind is now a regular cloak (but it looks nice), etc, but the Alchemist can keep throwing bombs and healing companions.

After all, Alchemy is non-magical.

That said: how many magic dead areas do you expect to run into?

So yeah, overall, Alchemists need an overhaul.

is it nonmagical though?

Resonance feels very magical to me.

The first sentence of its description is actually :

Quote:

Resonance Points

Your innate ability to use magic items is represented
by a pool of Resonance Points (RP).
Which is why it doesn't actually make sense that alchemical items require RP at all.

From page 359:

Quote:

Alchemical items are not inherently magical but instead use the properties of volatile chemicals, exotic minerals, potent plants, and other substances, collectively referred to as alchemical reagents. As such, alchemical items don’t radiate magical auras, and they can’t be dispelled or dismissed. Their effects last for a set amount of time or until they are countered in some way, typically physically.

Sometimes the reactions of alchemical reagents create effects that seem magical, and at other times they straddle the line between purely reactive and the inexplicable. Some alchemical items require spending Resonance Points as part of their activation, and alchemists can use their Resonance Points to quickly craft and empower their own alchemical items. Even in these cases, alchemical items don’t radiate magic auras, and they use a creature’s Resonance Points as simply one additional catalyst to produce their alchemical effects.

This quite explicitly says that the resonance is merely a catalyst, but there is nothing magical about Alchemical Objects, their creation, or using them.

Yes, I understand your problem regarding Resonance Points, but it says that RP are just used as a catalyst. How that isn't magical I don't know, but it IS their take on it.


Blave wrote:
Alchemists can throw multiple bombs per round. It's not much, but better than nothing. Not saying they are competitive by any means, though.

This just exacerbates the problems with alchemists though. Yes they can fling a bunch of bombs but given how limited on resources they are it starts off as a good number and then basically goes flat and in mid levels when you start getting magic items you may want it actually goes down.

It was errated that quick alchemy can make uncommon items which is at least a small improvement but it also exacerbates the resource problem. Using advanced alchemy you can make batches of things like two bombs at a time for one resonance. BUT if you do so you cannot apply any of your additive stuff to them they are just the flat vanilla bomb type which negates a great number of feats.

If you chose to use quick alchemy on the spot to make bombs you can now make one bomb per 1 resonance. A lot of the additives cost a resonance as well. So as you go up in level the amount of full strength bombs you can make per day likely winds up being less than full spell slots for casters. You could exceed casters basically only if you are using your resonance for nothing but bombs.

So yes you can fling a bunch of bombs in a round and that round will be a big portion of your daily total of special stuff you can do. VS a boss at low/mid levels you could pretty easily throw all the bombs you have and can make in three rounds of combat. Now add to that they only get trained in throwing bombs so if you are making multiple attacks you have a high chance of missing with something you don't have many of to begin with. I honestly can't see risking wasting bombs unless you are really desperate and throw multiples in a round.


Darres147 wrote:

A couple things about Alchemist that is being missed i think:

- If Alchemist items didn't need resonance you wouldn't have cha most likely so you get up to 4 "free" resonance for your alchemist items.

- When you create items for the day you get 2 for elixirs/bombs/poison and you can create up to 10 in the beginning that don't cost you resonance later(for elixirs). With this at level 4 your healing is better per resonance on yourself which drops at level 5 and at 8th+ you can heal yourself more per point.

- You can try to create an alchemist item with no resonance using quick alchemy and still use it if it's an elixir.

- With up to 10 free bombs a day the cleric gets 4 uses compared to your 10 and they have to use 2 actions per cast so no doing 2 attacks in 1 turn.

- If you decide to focus on mutagen damage instead at low level you have LOTS of healing and an elixir that makes your unarmed deal 1d6 for 1 hour

- When you get access to mutagen that is the first level you should be capable of finding +2 weapons and you have a mutagen that makes you have equivalent of +2 for 1 minute.

- You CAN create MUTAGENS with ADVANCED ALCHEMY if it's at the beginning of the day. Also giving mutagens to your monk or animal barbarian is quite strong as well if they haven't gotten an equivalent weapon yet.

- If you get prepared before combat you can have poisons prepared to apply to weapons that could potentially add quite a bit of damage if combat doesn't end immediately.

- Bottled lightning and Tanglefoot bags seem to be useful even at higher levels for the ability to make someone flatfooted or entangled. I don't think this is worth the trade off but the chance to hit on your 2nd attack goes down quite a bit if they're your level or higher anyways.

Actually currently unless they errata this as well you CANNOT make mutagens with advanced alchemy. Currently RAW states that advanced alchemy can only create common alchemical items. Mutagens are all uncommon at best. They did finally errata that at least quick alchemy can make uncommon items so I kinda expect eventually it will be the case you can do this with advanced alchemy as well but currently that is not the case.

Currently I think some of the issues may stem from the rules are written like you can make uncommon items with your daily or quick abilities but the actual rules contradict this. Given the alchemist is the most top down complete rework of the bunch so some teething pains I guess should be expected.

Oh one other thing that alchemists probably should get is their spell casting DC for what people have to roll against when trying to save vs alchemist stuff. Currently it can be done but there are like 2 or 3 feats needed to do this which is just an excessive feat tax for something that should be default functionality.


I think one other thing that needs looking at is the alchemist feats. I really hate the term feat tax but some of them it is hard to look at as anything else. An extra cost to make something work like you would expect it to.

Like the rapid onset feat if you want to use mutagens in combat you pretty much need to pick this up.

Want your int bonus do damage you do with bombs like every spell caster gets for free well that will cost you a feat.

Want your dc's to scale to your caster ability like every other caster class that will also cost you at least one feat but if you want poisons DC improvmentthat is another feat too.

Want to be able to use your bombs in combat without annoying the party thats another feat.

A big chunk of early feat usage for alchemists is slapping duct tape onto their abilities to make them just function as you would expect them to.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

People keep talking about throwing a lot of bombs in combat. Isn't drawing a single bomb an Action, separate from the Action of throwing one? And of course Quick Alchemy is an Action.

So short of grabbing the feat that lets you draw a Bomb when you craft a Bomb with Quick Alchemy, or multiclassing Rogue for like 4 levels for Quick Draw, how do you ever throw more than one Bomb in a round?


You can at first level can get a feat that lets you draw two bombs with one draw action or on quick alchemy make one bomb and draw another at the same time with one action. So you can throw two bombs a round if you want to. Possibly more as I have not looked at what the various haste spells give you yet.


Forgot to list the feat.
QUICK BOMBER FEAT 1
You place your bombs in easy-to-reach pouches and learn how to draw them
almost without thinking. When you use the Interact action (see page 307) to draw an
alchemical item with the bomb trait, you can draw two bombs instead. When using Quick
Alchemy to create a bomb, you can also draw one other bomb as part of the Quick
Alchemy action.


You can also just carry two bombs in your hands when you're in exploration mode so that you have them ready for the first round of combat.


Xenocrat wrote:
You can also just carry two bombs in your hands when you're in exploration mode so that you have them ready for the first round of combat.

Only if you made them at the start of that day. Any Quick Alchemy Bombs can't be handled this way.

Side note, so how are people getting their teammates to eat the splash damage?


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Which is the same issue with Quick Bomber, you have to have crafted them before hand, which is yes better on the Resonance front, but on the other hand doesn't work with a bunch of other later options/feats.

There is a feat to avoid hitting allies with Splash damage, but some seemed to think that Splash damage would really help taking out the main target, but as far as I can tell Splash damage only affects your target if you missed, but didn't critically miss your target. I guess sticky bomb can help?

Of course throwing two Acid Flasks at the same target is pointless.


Ryuujin-sama wrote:

Which is the same issue with Quick Bomber, you have to have crafted them before hand, which is yes better on the Resonance front, but on the other hand doesn't work with a bunch of other later options/feats.

There is a feat to avoid hitting allies with Splash damage, but some seemed to think that Splash damage would really help taking out the main target, but as far as I can tell Splash damage only affects your target if you missed, but didn't critically miss your target. I guess sticky bomb can help?

Of course throwing two Acid Flasks at the same target is pointless.

splash damage is area damage

your target is inside the area, so he takes it as well.

Quote:

Splash (page 359)

When a character uses a thrown weapon with
the splash trait (such as an alchemical bomb or holy water),
she doesn’t add her Strength modifier to the damage roll. A
splash weapon can deal splash damage in addition to its normal
damage. If an attack with a splash weapon fails, succeeds, or
critically succeeds, all creatures within 5 feet of the target take
the indicated amount of splash damage.
On a failure (but not a
critical failure), the target of the attack also takes the splash
damage. Splash damage is not multiplied on a critical hit.

he is not exluded from the area at all.

the second part (saying that he still takes the splash even on a miss) is required because normally, on a miss, you don't do any damage.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

You bolded the wrong part. The very next sentence says:

On a failure (but not a critical failure) the target of the attack also takes the splash damage.

In other words the target only takes the splash damage on a normal failure, not on any type of success or a critical failure. That line doesn't say still indicating that they still take splash damage on a failure it says also as in adding the target to the group of creatures taking splash damage.


Ryuujin-sama wrote:

You bolded the wrong part. The very next sentence says:

On a failure (but not a critical failure) the target of the attack also takes the splash damage.

In other words the target only takes the splash damage on a normal failure, not on any type of success or a critical failure. That line doesn't say still indicating that they still take splash damage on a failure it says also as in adding the target to the group of creatures taking splash damage.

I addressed that.

If that part wasn't written, on a failed roll you would do 0 damage to the target (miss does no damage) and still do splash to surrounding targets. Which makes no sense.

So they added that even if you miss, target still takes damage.

This part existing doesn't remove the original target from the starting AoE of the first part of the splash.

It just makes certain that they "stay" in it even in misses.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Why do you keep using the word "still?" The line doesn't say "still" it says "also." Those words mean different things.


Ryuujin-sama wrote:
Why do you keep using the word "still?" The line doesn't say "still" it says "also." Those words mean different things.

I'm saying "also" because the sentence above says "in addition" which is synonymous with also in this case.

A bomb deals X damage and in addition Y damage aoe centered on the target. If the attack misses, the target also takes Y damage (because by rules, if the attack missed, the aoe would have "missed" him as well if that sentence didn't exist)

It seems pretty clear to me that target gets hit by splash regardless if it's a hit or a miss (but not a crit miss)

Again "all creatures within slash radius take splash damafe" doesn't exclude the main target at all. Second sentence just makes sure that even on a miss, he (also, like the rest) takes damage.


So after GenCon Jason Bulmahn Director of Game Design posted a thread where one of the things said was "Alchemists can use Quick Alchemy for any alchemical item in their formula book."

Helps a little bit and with mutagens even though it still takes 2 actions (1 to make and 1 to drink) you can have the effect instantly take hold.

Alchemist still need some love but I wonder if higher level bombs exist and were just held off from the play test so they could examine how well the alchemist works.


Darres147 wrote:

So after GenCon Jason Bulmahn Director of Game Design posted a thread where one of the things said was "Alchemists can use Quick Alchemy for any alchemical item in their formula book."

Helps a little bit and with mutagens even though it still takes 2 actions (1 to make and 1 to drink) you can have the effect instantly take hold.

Alchemist still need some love but I wonder if higher level bombs exist and were just held off from the play test so they could examine how well the alchemist works.

Even if they exist, you cannot empower them. You can only empower level 1 bombs because... Reasons.

The fact that they can USE their class feature is just an errata fix (before they couldn't) and he still has no replied if they can make it with their other 50% of their class (advanced Alchemy).

That's still not even remotely enough to make the class even playable.

As a reference, we used Advanced Alchemy (twice as efficient as Quick Alchemy) to make Mutagens in all of our playtests so far, and it did piddling nothing at all to make the class viable.


kaid wrote:

I think one other thing that needs looking at is the alchemist feats. I really hate the term feat tax but some of them it is hard to look at as anything else. An extra cost to make something work like you would expect it to.

Like the rapid onset feat if you want to use mutagens in combat you pretty much need to pick this up.

Want your int bonus do damage you do with bombs like every spell caster gets for free well that will cost you a feat.

Want your dc's to scale to your caster ability like every other caster class that will also cost you at least one feat but if you want poisons DC improvmentthat is another feat too.

Want to be able to use your bombs in combat without annoying the party thats another feat.

A big chunk of early feat usage for alchemists is slapping duct tape onto their abilities to make them just function as you would expect them to.

I don't know if they did this because Alchemists get feats like a martial so they thought they couldn't just give them what casters get base line or what. But the amount of feats you have to get into order to make your items usable is really painful and makes you feel like you have less feats than anyone else. At the current moment I feel that Alchemists are supposed to be a martial that plays like a caster. They use crossbows and melee weapons for their cantrips and alchemical items for their spell slots. This means they get martial number of class feats while keeping the playstyle of a caster. This is fine, and I can see why they made alchemical items not was good as spells. The problem is that they're too weak and the feats have too many things that feel like feat taxes (I also hate that term too). The current alchemist just doesn't feel like it has its own unique role to fill like the other classes do.

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