Retributive Strike Statistics


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Blave wrote:

Well, that's a "corner case" (I'm almost sorry for that. Almost.)

I'm aware of this situation. That's why I said you have to be adjacent on the side of the square.

I don't know, Steping (or even Striding) 10 feet seems a bit much, at least without feat investment.

How about an "Intercept" feat, allowing you to move up to 10 feet when an ally is attacked, but you must use either Shield Warden or Retributive Strike against this attack(er). Or both if you have Shield of Reckoning, of course.

Oh certainly, I would settle for a 1st level intercept feat. I'd be fine with that. It would also help with the fact that 2/3 1st level Pallie Feats are LoH related.

Sovereign Court

I think that allowing a full stride to be taken with retributive strike might be too much, and I also agree that having a feat at some point allowing for a 10 feet movement when activating retributive strike might be enough.

If you still want to make sure it feels tanky and not mobile you could have the following :

Trigger: an enemy not within reach attacks an adjacent ally
Effect: you reposition yourself with a 10 feet stride that must end adjacent to your ally and within reach of the enemy, and you take a retributive strike action.

That would fit the role of the protector really well. I think that giving a 10 feet stride at every retributive strike might be too good, and the plain will always reposition himself with retributive strike, which shouldn't be the case.

I see it more like a "Move aside Friend, I shall take care of that fiend!".

The feat should enable to attack enemies that have reach or try to move out of the Paladin's reach that are trying to attack allies protected by the Paladin.


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Darkorin wrote:

I think that allowing a full stride to be taken with retributive strike might be too much, and I also agree that having a feat at some point allowing for a 10 feet movement when activating retributive strike might be enough.

If you still want to make sure it feels tanky and not mobile you could have the following :

Trigger: an enemy not within reach attacks an adjacent ally
Effect: you reposition yourself with a 10 feet stride that must end adjacent to your ally and within reach of the enemy, and you take a retributive strike action.

That would fit the role of the protector really well. I think that giving a 10 feet stride at every retributive strike might be too good, and the plain will always reposition himself with retributive strike, which shouldn't be the case.

I see it more like a "Move aside Friend, I shall take care of that fiend!".

The feat should enable to attack enemies that have reach or try to move out of the Paladin's reach that are trying to attack allies protected by the Paladin.

This is a decent solution, although it still gives Reach wew weapons a big advantage and does nothing for ranged builds.

I'd prefer it though if this whole feat was just rolled into Retributive Strike, which was then also a first-level feat, and that Paladins got something more iconic as the core class ability like Smite or Divine Grace.

Sovereign Court

Another solution could be to have a feat that enables the paladin to switch place with an adjacent ally when the ally is targeted by an attack.

The Paladin becomes the new target, and can do a retributive strike if the enemy is within reach.

That would fit really well with the defender purpose.

The issues with ranged paladins is that they currently don't fit with the defender purpose. If you are in the back shooting arrows, you're not actively trying to protect your allies.

Paladins already have a lot of class features at first level, and retributive strike works well there because it's not something that you can trigger whenever you want. You cannot switch it with smite or divine grace since those abilities you can rely on. And paladins already have that with Champions Powers.


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Adding feats to make a crappy ability better is not a tenable solution whne we could just not have crappy abilities that need to be rebalanced in the first place.

I don't see a reason why Warded Touch or Hospice Knight need to exist at all, they get rid of weaknesses that you just simply didn;t have in PF1 and these feats exist to make you feel like you're enhancing your character but really you're just buying back what already existed.

In PF1 paladins got Heal as a class skill, it didn;t cost them a feat.
Lay on Hands used d6's normally, it didn't cost them a feat.
Lay on Hands did not require any feats to get around AOOs because they didn't provoke and you could use it with a weapon in hand because moving your hand off to do something was considered part of the action of whatever you were doing, so ungripping your greatsword and using LoH then regripping and attacking, no problem.

Retributive Strike would make for a much better feat that any of these and we could get a real class ability that doesn't force you to build a specific way if you ever wanna use your class feature.


Darkorin wrote:
Paladins already have a lot of class features at first level, and retributive strike works well there because it's not something that you can trigger whenever you want. You cannot switch it with smite or divine grace since those abilities you can rely on. And paladins already have that with Champions Powers.

Paladins already get Divine Grace at level 2, though, they just have to choose the feat (and it's really the only good feat at that level). Why could you not just swap that with Retributive Strike so Retributive Strike is the feat (and it would still be the best one at that level)?

Also if Retributive Strike is inherently unreliable like you say (and I agree) then Smite shouldn't be tied to it in my opinion. If Champion Powers are meant to be the "reliable" abilities then maybe make Smite a Champion Power instead.

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Retributive Strike is supposed to deter opponents from triggering it. However, I agree the ability isn't designed that way. There's no counterplay with opponents unless they metagame. Even when it does do its job of keeping opponents from attacking your allies, it doesn't feel satisfying.

It's an ability that's only satisfying when opponents do what you don't want them to do.

Sovereign Court

master_marshmallow wrote:

Adding feats to make a crappy ability better is not a tenable solution whne we could just not have crappy abilities that need to be rebalanced in the first place.

I don't see a reason why Warded Touch or Hospice Knight need to exist at all, they get rid of weaknesses that you just simply didn;t have in PF1 and these feats exist to make you feel like you're enhancing your character but really you're just buying back what already existed.

In PF1 paladins got Heal as a class skill, it didn;t cost them a feat.
Lay on Hands used d6's normally, it didn't cost them a feat.
Lay on Hands did not require any feats to get around AOOs because they didn't provoke and you could use it with a weapon in hand because moving your hand off to do something was considered part of the action of whatever you were doing, so ungripping your greatsword and using LoH then regripping and attacking, no problem.

Retributive Strike would make for a much better feat that any of these and we could get a real class ability that doesn't force you to build a specific way if you ever wanna use your class feature.

In PF1 Paladins were also one of the most overpowered class that could do everything by themselves.

PF2 seeks to give a clearer role to the paladin with the ability to open your paladin to some different playstyle by giving you the choices of what kind of paladin you want to play.

When evaluating a new edition, you shouldn't compare part of it to the previous one, it is a whole and a lot of things in the system changed. The current question is: Is the PF2 Paladin good/fun to play.

Honestly just take a look at the number of class features that paladin are getting at first level and then take a look at other martial classes.

They get three features: Champion Powers, Deific Weapon AND Retributive Strike. I think it's enough.


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Darkorin wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:

Adding feats to make a crappy ability better is not a tenable solution whne we could just not have crappy abilities that need to be rebalanced in the first place.

I don't see a reason why Warded Touch or Hospice Knight need to exist at all, they get rid of weaknesses that you just simply didn;t have in PF1 and these feats exist to make you feel like you're enhancing your character but really you're just buying back what already existed.

In PF1 paladins got Heal as a class skill, it didn;t cost them a feat.
Lay on Hands used d6's normally, it didn't cost them a feat.
Lay on Hands did not require any feats to get around AOOs because they didn't provoke and you could use it with a weapon in hand because moving your hand off to do something was considered part of the action of whatever you were doing, so ungripping your greatsword and using LoH then regripping and attacking, no problem.

Retributive Strike would make for a much better feat that any of these and we could get a real class ability that doesn't force you to build a specific way if you ever wanna use your class feature.

In PF1 Paladins were also one of the most overpowered class that could do everything by themselves.

PF2 seeks to give a clearer role to the paladin with the ability to open your paladin to some different playstyle by giving you the choices of what kind of paladin you want to play.

When evaluating a new edition, you shouldn't compare part of it to the previous one, it is a whole and a lot of things in the system changed. The current question is: Is the PF2 Paladin good/fun to play.

Honestly just take a look at the number of class features that paladin are getting at first level and then take a look at other martial classes.

They get three features: Champion Powers, Deific Weapon AND Retributive Strike. I think it's enough.

Wait, paladins were OP in PF1? News to me.

Deific weapon is pretty much wasted ink unless you're going unarmed.

Champion Power(s) is misleading as you only get Lay on Hands and at that you'll need a feat just so it functions as intended. It also heals less without said feat over time, and has a much more limited resource.

There's multiple threads on Retributive Strike not being usable.

I want a functioning class that doesn't tax my character options away just to do what I could already do in the previous edition.


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Darkorin wrote:
In PF1 Paladins were also one of the most overpowered class that could do everything by themselves.

That's not true, they were a pretty good martial but certainly not OP like a Cleric or Wizard.

Darkorin wrote:
PF2 seeks to give a clearer role to the paladin with the ability to open your paladin to some different playstyle by giving you the choices of what kind of paladin you want to play.

No, it pushes you towards one build paradigm of a bodyguard/healer in heavy armor with either a Reach weapon or S&B. It's got nothing like the build diversity in 1e, nor does it feel like the old Paladin identity, which leads me to my next point.

Darkorin wrote:
When evaluating a new edition, you shouldn't compare part of it to the previous one, it is a whole and a lot of things in the system changed. The current question is: Is the PF2 Paladin good/fun to play.

The Paladin has a core identity of a chivalrous knight dedicated to rooting out evil and protecting the innocent. Its features don't support this, and your Retributive Strike ability being primarily "I didn't get to do anything but I made you move 5 feet away/I made you attack me" is not really strong support for that identity, nor is it very fun to play.

Darkorin wrote:

Honestly just take a look at the number of class features that paladin are getting at first level and then take a look at other martial classes.

They get three features: Champion Powers, Deific Weapon AND Retributive Strike. I think it's enough.

At first level you get ONE Champion Power, Lay on Hands. Deific Weapon doesn't do much since you already have martial weapon proficiency, it's mostly a fluff feature. Retributive Strike, as discussed, hardly ever gets used since it is primarily a deterrent.

So, compare that to other first-level features like Rage or Sneak Attack which are pretty strong and give the class a real, strong, and flexible core identity that is consistent with the "classic" barbarian or rogue that a player would want, at least in theory, from those classes.

Sovereign Court

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CBAnaesthesia wrote:


Darkorin wrote:
When evaluating a new edition, you shouldn't compare part of it to the previous one, it is a whole and a lot of things in the system changed. The current question is: Is the PF2 Paladin good/fun to play.
The Paladin has a core identity of a chivalrous knight dedicated to rooting out evil and protecting the innocent. Its features don't support this, and your Retributive Strike ability being primarily "I didn't get to do anything but I made you move 5 feet away/I made you attack me" is not really strong support for that identity, nor is it very fun to play.

It's a starting ability that evolves over time and you can make it great. Let's take a small example:

I have a paladin with Shield Ally, Shield Warden and Shield of Reckoning.

An enemy attacks an adjacent friend of mine, I can thus with one reaction do a Shield Block and reduce the enemy damages to my ally, but even before that happens, I do a Retributive strike against the enemy. With a single reaction that acts on a single trigger. IT IS GOOD, and I will feel like a chivalrous knight protecting my allies!

You were talking about 5-stepping away? Well... I can get Holy Wall and prevent you from acting this way! This means that if you're next to me you must choose between attacking me, attacking my ally or taking an AO. That seems like the enemy will have a real hard time!

CBAnaesthesia wrote:


Darkorin wrote:

Honestly just take a look at the number of class features that paladin are getting at first level and then take a look at other martial classes.

They get three features: Champion Powers, Deific Weapon AND Retributive Strike. I think it's enough.

At first level you get ONE Champion Power, Lay on Hands. Deific Weapon doesn't do much since you already have martial weapon proficiency, it's mostly a fluff feature. Retributive Strike, as discussed, hardly ever gets used since it is primarily a deterrent.

So, compare that to other first-level features like Rage or Sneak Attack which are pretty strong and give the class a real, strong, and flexible core identity that is consistent with the "classic" barbarian or rogue that a player...

Everyone starts at first level with only one power and must take feats to learn others. Asking for the paladin to have more is honestly just greedy.

And retributive strike can become quite great if you want it to become.

The current paladin has multiple way to evolve, but you must now choose one when the previous paladin could do all. You can make him great with divine power, making him protect his ally, or make an attacker (the weakest of the three options right now).

But honestly, the "classic" paladin that protects? The current class is great for that, shield ally being really awesome in my opinion.


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Darkorin wrote:
An enemy attacks an adjacent friend of mine

THIS IS THE PROBLEM.

You are not granted agency to use your class features unless you specifically are adjacent to the ally you want to protect.

So now I force my allies to build in such ways that they don;t need to defend themselves so I can use my class features?

Wizards don't bother turning invisible or flying out of the reach of enemies, the paladin is here to babysit you and if you don't let him do that he can't use half the abilities he was intended to use.

Monks? Good luck keeping up with that heavy armor.

Rogues? No don't flank the enemy with me, if the enemy moves I can't use my class feature, stand next to me instead it's better for me.

Fighters, Barbarians, Rangers? They all make better front liners than the paladin, because they can actually do things offensively that don't require me to force my allies to play around me.

This is bad design, plain and simple.


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Darkorin wrote:
It's a starting ability that evolves over time and you can make it great.

It only "evolves over time" by tying other abilities to it, like Smite, not by letting you use it more often, so effectively it just nerfs the abilities tied to it. You can only make it useable by investing a ton of your class feats into it, so again you are pushed toward one build paradigm. Despite your assertion that Paladin builds are still flexible, they're not.

Darkorin wrote:


I have a paladin with Shield Ally, Shield Warden and Shield of Reckoning.

An enemy attacks an adjacent friend of mine, I can thus with one reaction do a Shield Block and reduce the enemy damages to my ally, but even before that happens, I do a Retributive strike against the enemy. With a single reaction that acts on a single trigger. IT IS GOOD, and I will feel like a chivalrous knight protecting my allies!

You were talking about 5-stepping away? Well... I can get Holy Wall and prevent you from acting this way! This means that if you're next to me you must choose between attacking me, attacking my ally or taking an AO. That seems like the enemy will have a real hard time!

Again, you're giving up a ton of opportunity cost just to make Retributive Strike hard to avoid, and it doesn't make it much more likely to actually trigger. The opportunity cost is especially high if you want to take Shield Warden AND Attack of Opportunity, since they're competing 6th level feats. On top of that, Reach weapons are better than S&B anyway for Ret. Strike, since it expands your threat range.

Darkorin wrote:
Everyone starts at first level with only one power and must take feats to learn others. Asking for the paladin to have more is honestly just greedy.

That doesn't change the fact that their first-level features aren't better than what other classes get like you said, either thematically or mechanically. Rogues get Sneak Attack and +Dex to weapons, like you'd expect. Barbarians get Rage, like you'd expect. Paladins get Lay on Hands which is incredibly weak unless you take extra feats for it, and Retributive Strike which is also not good unless you take extra feats for it.

Darkorin wrote:
And retributive strike can become quite great if you want it to become.

It can become DECENT if you sink most of your class feats into improving it, but it doesn't change the fact that the point of it is basically just to be a deterrent that doesn't get used, which means that the other features tied to it (like Smite) are incredibly weak now because you'll basically never get to use them.

Darkorin wrote:

The current paladin has multiple way to evolve, but you must now choose one when the previous paladin could do all. You can make him great with divine power, making him protect his ally, or make an attacker (the weakest of the three options right now).

But honestly, the "classic" paladin that protects? The current class is great for that, shield ally being really awesome in my opinion.

The "classic" paladin isn't just a babysitter for other characters, any more than the "classic" fighter was. I'm also still not clear where you get this idea that a Paladin was OP and great at everything before, they had good saving throws and situationally good damage, that's it.


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The adjacency requirement for an ally is just for Shield Warden. Retributive Strike works like a more restrictive Combat Challenge from 4e, and Combat Challenge triggered often enough.

If you want to buff Retributive Strike, either make it trigger on attacks, not just hits, or increase its range to, say 15 ft around the Paladin. It would make them better battlefield controllers, and the Strike could be favoured as a holy smite that arcs from the Paladin's weapon to his foe.


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Pramxnim wrote:

The adjacency requirement for an ally is just for Shield Warden. Retributive Strike works like a more restrictive Combat Challenge from 4e, and Combat Challenge triggered often enough.

If you want to buff Retributive Strike, either make it trigger on attacks, not just hits, or increase its range to, say 15 ft around the Paladin. It would make them better battlefield controllers, and the Strike could be favoured as a holy smite that arcs from the Paladin's weapon to his foe.

SWORD BEAMS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Pramxnim wrote:

The adjacency requirement for an ally is just for Shield Warden. Retributive Strike works like a more restrictive Combat Challenge from 4e, and Combat Challenge triggered often enough.

If you want to buff Retributive Strike, either make it trigger on attacks, not just hits, or increase its range to, say 15 ft around the Paladin. It would make them better battlefield controllers, and the Strike could be favoured as a holy smite that arcs from the Paladin's weapon to his foe.

Unless you're using a Reach weapon, "an enemy within your reach" is functionally basically the same. I mean, just look at the OP's statistics if you want to see how often Ret. Strike triggers.

Your buff is OK and is in line with what was already proposed by some posters (let the Paladin move 5-10 feet as part of the Reaction). I still don't think it should be tied to core Paladin things like Smite, though.


I'd rather an extra feat was not needed to make Retributive Strike harder to avoid. My suggestion is that the Paladin is allowed to take a free Step when an ally is attacked as long as that Step would put them in reach of the attacking enemy, and then they can make a Strike. That means that even if an enemy uses a Stride to get all the way to the opposite side of your medium-sized friendly, you can Step diagonally and use Retributive Strike against them. That would mean that if a Paladin is adjacent to an ally, you are always risking an attack from them, unless you're in a 5 ft. wide hallway I guess.


master_marshmallow wrote:
So literally by choosing to play this class it's my own fault that I'm not having fun?

When you pick a class that has a playstyle you don't like? Yeah, it's obviously your fault. Same as if you don't like characters with fiddly details and you play a prepared Vancian spellcaster, or you like to be really good at skills and pick a Fighter. When you're making choices against your own tastes, I can't help you. I'm not sure what you're expecting me to concede here.


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Pandora's wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
So literally by choosing to play this class it's my own fault that I'm not having fun?
When you pick a class that has a playstyle you don't like? Yeah, it's obviously your fault. Same as if you don't like characters with fiddly details and you play a prepared Vancian spellcaster, or you like to be really good at skills and pick a Fighter. When you're making choices against your own tastes, I can't help you. I'm not sure what you're expecting me to concede here.

Even if that play style is in conflict with my personal interpretation of the class?

I want my paladin to be a front line fighter who vanquishes evil.

Nope, not anymore, that's not your thing.

Playtest Rulebook wrote:
You are a champion of justice, a holy servant of a good and lawful deity who takes up the mantle of a restrictive code to provide certainty and hope to the innocent. You have powerful defenses that you share freely with your allies and innocent bystanders, but when the time comes to punish the wicked, you use your holy power to end the threat of evil. Your devotion also attracts the attention of holy spirits who aid you on your journey. Others can count on you to adhere to your code of conduct, and they trust you at your word.

This is not what I'm being sold.


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Pandora's wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
So literally by choosing to play this class it's my own fault that I'm not having fun?
When you pick a class that has a playstyle you don't like? Yeah, it's obviously your fault. Same as if you don't like characters with fiddly details and you play a prepared Vancian spellcaster, or you like to be really good at skills and pick a Fighter. When you're making choices against your own tastes, I can't help you. I'm not sure what you're expecting me to concede here.

Because a babysitter class is not what you expect when you're picking a Paladin. There are expectations that come with a class - a rogue will be good at skills, a wizard will be fiddly, weak at low levels and strong later, a fighter will be the best at attacking, a barbarian will be unskilled but hit hard due to their rage. A paladin is a knight that seeks out and destroys evil, and protects the innocent. Only the second half of that is represented by Retributive Strike, and it's less "protect the innocent" than "impotently watch as the enemy moves 5 feet away to attack, first." And it's baked in to the class - you can't be a paladin who doesn't do that, and a bunch of other class features are tied to Retributive Strike. It's a passive and unsatisfying playstyle if you like the classic paladin concept.


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master_marshmallow wrote:
Even if that play style is in conflict with my personal interpretation of the class?

Yup. My personal interpretation of mages doesn't allow them to change out every spell they've ever studied on a whim daily. My personal interpretation of fighters are worldly swordsman who have much more to contribute with skills and outside of combat than they do in Pathfinder. My personal interpretation of a Paladin is a good guy who helps people as his first priority, not a murder-focused psychopath who just happens to target creatures his magic tells him are Evil.

Classes in any class-based system do certain things, divided into silos. If those silos don't match your interpretation, you're out of luck. If you want more freedom to match your exact interpretations, a classless system is pretty much always going to work better for you.

master_marshmallow wrote:
I want my paladin to be a front line fighter who vanquishes evil.

They still fight on the front line and they still vanquish evil. They're just no longer vastly better at the latter than every other martial class. Considering this is a game and genre defined by fighting evil creatures, it seems like making them no longer far and away the best at fighting most opponents is a reasonable concession.

master_marshmallow wrote:
This is not what I'm being sold.
Playtest Rulebook wrote:
You are a champion of justice, a holy servant of a good and lawful deity who takes up the mantle of a restrictive code to provide certainty and hope to the innocent. You have powerful defenses that you share freely with your allies and innocent bystanders, but when the time comes to punish the wicked, you use your holy power to end the threat of evil. Your devotion also attracts the attention of holy spirits who aid you on your journey. Others can count on you to adhere to your code of conduct, and they trust you at your word.

Really? Cause my reading of that same passage mentions defense first, offense second. Considering Paladins have both kinds of abilities, I'd say you're getting exactly what a less selective reading of the class tells you you're getting.


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Pandora's wrote:
My personal interpretation of a Paladin is a good guy who helps people as his first priority, not a murder-focused psychopath who just happens to target creatures his magic tells him are Evil.

Those are both RP choices, I agree with you that the paladin is generally a good guy who helps people. Michael Carpenter and Sparhawk are usually my go-to guys for paladins. But that's reinforced by the paladin code of conduct in the class entry, not by any mechanics.

Pandora's wrote:
Classes in any class-based system do certain things, divided into silos. If those silos don't match your interpretation, you're out of luck. If you want more freedom to match your exact interpretations, a classless system is pretty much always going to work better for you.

The paladin is more narrowly focused than other classes in this edition because it's being pushed into this "defender" role with Retributive Strike. Compare it to Wizards with their specialist schools, the diversity of Fighters or Rogues that you can make work, or Clerics (who get the Paladin's former class ability of Smiting, 5 levels earlier than the Paladin, and are a whole lot better at it).

Pandora's wrote:


They still fight on the front line and they still vanquish evil. They're just no longer vastly better at the latter than every other martial class. Considering this is a game and genre defined by fighting evil creatures, it seems like making them no longer far and away the best at fighting most opponents is a reasonable concession.
They never were "far and away" the best martial, but if you're worried about them being OP, make their offensive abilities more in-line with other characters, don't just rip them out of the class or tie them to Retributive Strike so that they never get a chance to get used.
Pandora's wrote:
Considering Paladins have both kinds of abilities, I'd say you're getting exactly what a less selective reading of the class tells you you're getting.

Please elaborate on what you think Paladins get for a good offensive ability. Blade Ally is OK, but otherwise even their old offensive signature (smiting) is now a defensive ability by virtue of being tied to Retributive Strike.

I mean, I've played in parties where I was the only melee character, and plenty of others where there was only one other melee character. In any of those games, Retributive Strike would've been almost entirely useless - but I was absolutely defending my party members because I had abilities that were actually useful. Again, I think Retributive Strike should get moved to one of the "optional" feats and something like Divine Grace or a reworked Smite should replace it, because those are something any paladin would want, whereas Ret. Strike is something that may or may not be useful based on your character and your party.
Also, I'd say your reading is equally selective, since you also just focused on one line, just like you criticised marshmallow for.


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Pandora's wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
Even if that play style is in conflict with my personal interpretation of the class?

Yup. My personal interpretation of mages doesn't allow them to change out every spell they've ever studied on a whim daily. My personal interpretation of fighters are worldly swordsman who have much more to contribute with skills and outside of combat than they do in Pathfinder. My personal interpretation of a Paladin is a good guy who helps people as his first priority, not a murder-focused psychopath who just happens to target creatures his magic tells him are Evil.

Classes in any class-based system do certain things, divided into silos. If those silos don't match your interpretation, you're out of luck. If you want more freedom to match your exact interpretations, a classless system is pretty much always going to work better for you.

master_marshmallow wrote:
I want my paladin to be a front line fighter who vanquishes evil.

They still fight on the front line and they still vanquish evil. They're just no longer vastly better at the latter than every other martial class. Considering this is a game and genre defined by fighting evil creatures, it seems like making them no longer far and away the best at fighting most opponents is a reasonable concession.

master_marshmallow wrote:
This is not what I'm being sold.
Playtest Rulebook wrote:
You are a champion of justice, a holy servant of a good and lawful deity who takes up the mantle of a restrictive code to provide certainty and hope to the innocent. You have powerful defenses that you share freely with your allies and innocent bystanders, but when the time comes to punish the wicked, you use your holy power to end the threat of evil. Your devotion also attracts the attention of holy spirits who aid you on your journey. Others can count on you to adhere to your code of conduct, and they trust you at your word.
Really? Cause my reading of that same passage mentions defense first, offense...

Yeah, selectively reading the other part of the passage does not invalidate my desire for a better class.

You cannot be both a babysitter and a front-line fighter that vanquishes evil, you can't have it both ways and that's being demonstrated by playtest data. I personally had a player turn down their paladin because it didn't satisfy their desire to be a strong contributer to the front line.

Honestly I think I'm just gonna start flagging instead of replying to these posters who are dead set on Paizo sycophancy being the correct way to interact with other players who have a problem with some things in game.

You are not helpful.


CBAnaesthesia wrote:
Those are both RP choices, I agree with you that the paladin is generally a good guy who helps people. Michael Carpenter and Sparhawk are usually my go-to guys for paladins. But that's reinforced by the paladin code of conduct in the class entry, not by any mechanics.

I like my mechanical options in combat to match my character's personality and roleplay as well. Ignoring your allies to smite the baddies doesn't fit my view of someone who prioritizes helping people.

CBAnaesthesia wrote:
The paladin is more narrowly focused than other classes in this edition because it's being pushed into this "defender" role with Retributive Strike. Compare it to Wizards with their specialist schools, the diversity of Fighters or Rogues that you can make work, or Clerics (who get the Paladin's former class ability of Smiting, 5 levels earlier than the Paladin, and are a whole lot better at it).

It's no more narrow than the Fighter and Barbarian. Both are focused almost exclusively on damage and personal defense. In fact, since Paladins get defensive abilities, healing/support abilities, and offensive abilities, I'd argue they have a wider focus. You just can't choose to leave everything besides offense behind, because one defensive and one support ability are baked in at first level.

Paladin is of course more narrow than spellcasters, but that's an inevitable result of magic being better and prepared spellcasting being the "change your silver bullets daily (or in 10 minutes)" tragedy that it is.

CBAnaesthesia wrote:
Please elaborate on what you think Paladins get for a good offensive ability.

You misunderstand; I was speaking to the class's stated flavor and theoretical ability types available. I agree that all the Paladin offensive abilities, and honestly many of them period, looked very lackluster to me. Several of the offensive abilities being tied to Retributive Strike is also unfortunate. That's a question of balance, though, not class role. I don't think the developers intentionally made those offensive abilities so underwhelming.


I love when they start back-peddling.

Barbarians and fighters function exclusively on damage and personal defense?

Barbarians have the absolute undisputed best saves in the game. They get evasion for both Fort and Will saves, and the superstition totem gives you the equivalent of Divine Grace without wasting a reaction for 3 turns. That's not physical defense. They also have a bunch of utility abilities which grant them improved mobility in the forms of different movement types.

Hardly exclusive focus on damage.

Fighters for the most part this is correct for, it's a pretty boring class with a few good options for some builds, and a lot of trap options. It seems to want to focus on gaining additional reactions serving single purposes which require investment into different lines of feats.


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master_marshmallow wrote:
Yeah, selectively reading the other part of the passage does not invalidate my desire for a better class.

I read the whole passage and then acknowledged that the class was intended to have both offensive and defensive abilities. That isn't selective.

master_marshmallow wrote:
You cannot be both a babysitter and a front-line fighter that vanquishes evil

I say "defender" because I like the playstyle, you say "babysitter" because you don't like the playstyle. You not liking a play style doesn't make it wrong or bad. If other players like it, Paizo may be inclined to provide it, which is precisely what they did here.

But, in fact, I have played a front line defender Paladin in PF1, where they had less defensive focus, and it worked great. I played with one other melee and two archers. Your experiences are not globally representative.

master_marshmallow wrote:

Honestly I think I'm just gonna start flagging instead of replying to these posters who are dead set on Paizo sycophancy being the correct way to interact with other players who have a problem with some things in game.

You are not helpful.

You'll find that I haven't said anything so personally insulting to you. Argue against my points, don't insult me.

This is a public forum, and people are free to disagree with you. You are not entitled to a voice without opposition. I have strongly disagreed with Paizo's decisions before, and been extremely outspoken then too. Disagreeing with you is not sycophancy. It's my genuine opinion.


Pandora's wrote:


I like my mechanical options in combat to match my character's personality and roleplay as well. Ignoring your allies to smite the baddies doesn't fit my view of someone who prioritizes helping people.

So do I, and as I said I like a similar paladin archetype as you seem to. Calling on divine energy to smite the baddie threatening your friends instead of impotently standing by as they move 5 feet away fits my view of someone who prioritizes helping people.

Pandora's wrote:
It's no more narrow than the Fighter and Barbarian. Both are focused almost exclusively on damage and personal defense.

Neither of those classes are pushed toward a particular playstyle or build like the Paladin is - heavy armor, and either S&B or Reach weapon is what Paladins are implicitly pushed to focus on. Fighters get AoO, which is universally useful - Retributive Strike is not.

Pandora's wrote:


You misunderstand; I was speaking to the class's stated flavor and theoretical ability types available. I agree that all the Paladin offensive abilities, and honestly many of them period, looked very lackluster to me. Several of the offensive abilities being tied to Retributive Strike is also unfortunate. That's a question of balance, though, not class role. I don't think the developers intentionally made those offensive abilities so underwhelming.

So are you saying that you don't think there are any very good Paladin offensive abilities? And that a non-trivial part of that problem is tying offensive abilities to Retributive Strike? If so, I agree, and that's what I've been saying this whole time.

I'm not saying Paladins shouldn't get defensive options. I'm saying that forcing them to focus on defensive options, because offensive options are either tied to those defensive options or are simply bad, is a problem with the class, and it's a problem that makes the class' mechanics conflict with the class' flavor.


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Pandora's wrote:
I say "defender" because I like the playstyle, you say "babysitter" because you don't like the playstyle. You not liking a play style doesn't make it wrong or bad. If other players like it, Paizo may be inclined to provide it, which is precisely what they did here.

No, they mandated it. That's the problem.

Quote:
But, in fact, I have played a front line defender Paladin in PF1, where they had less defensive focus, and it worked great. I played with one other melee and two archers. Your experiences are not globally representative.

Neither are yours, but they are my experiences and thus are not invalid because you like the design of the class. The very fact that this conversation is continuing so you can reinforce your point of [I like it so you guys must be playing the game wrong] is offensive, and it is insulting.

Quote:
You'll find that I haven't said anything so personally insulting to you. Argue against my points, don't insult me.

See above.

Quote:
This is a public forum, and people are free to disagree with you.
This is true, then post a disagreement and talk about the game's design and how you think it works better, not on how I'm wrong for wanting something different for the class.
Quote:
You are not entitled to a voice without opposition.

But I am entitled to have my voice be respected, at least on these forums.

Quote:
I have strongly disagreed with Paizo's decisions before, and been extremely outspoken then too. Disagreeing with you is not sycophancy. It's my genuine opinion.

Your genuine opinion would be better served with an articulate case for the utility of Retributive Strike rather than attempting to insult and flame the users who disagree with you.


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Darkorin wrote:
HWalsh wrote:

I have now run 8 playtest games.

3 of them had Paladins. Data only comes from those.

Paladin builds:
Sword and board
Longbow only
Shield only

Here are the statistics:

Number of encounters: 8

Encounter 1:
Game 1: 4 PCs against 1 Goblin Dog. Retributive strike triggers: 0
Game 2: 5 PCs against 1 Goblin Dog. Retributive Strike Triggers: 0
Game 3: 5 PCs against 1 Goblin Dog. Retributive Strike Triggers: 0

Encounter 2:
Game 1: 4 PCs against 3 Goblin Dogs. Retributive strike triggers: 0
Game 2: 5 PCs against 3 Goblin Dogs. Retributive strike triggers: 0
Game 3: 5 PCs against 3 Goblin Dogs. Retributive strike triggers: 1

Encounter 3:
Game 1: 4 PCs against 2 Goblin Warriors and 2 Goblin Dogs. Retributive strike triggers: 0
Game 2: 5 PCs against 2 Goblin Warriors and 2 Goblin Dogs. Retributive strike triggers: 0
Game 3: 5 PCs against 2 Goblin Warriors and 2 Goblin Dogs. PCs turned back after disasterous encounter 2. This encounter did not happen.

-----

Retributive Strike needs to go.

You do realize that you are the DM and you are the one who makes the decision about what players the goblin dogs are attacking?

Thus you control ENTIRELY when Retributive strike will trigger, and it is part of your role as a DM to make every player feel special.

If you feel that Retributive strikes don't trigger enough, just make it trigger more!

having your core class ability entirely in the hands of the DM isn't a good thing, both because it makes your identifying feature is hilariously unreliable, and because it's more work and planning you're saddling the DM with for the player to function at a basic level, not to give them a cool spotlight moment.


AndIMustMask wrote:
having your core class ability entirely in the hands of the DM isn't a good thing, both because it makes your identifying feature is hilariously unreliable, and because it's more work and planning you're saddling the DM with for the player to function at a basic level, not to give them a cool spotlight moment.

This.

You should not be manipulating the game so a core ability functions. A core ability should function under average conditions. This is a problem and I am starting to feel great anxiety that Paizo has yet to comment on it.

I know this thread has only been up for a few days, but this was identified before the playtest dropped and we have heard nothing at all.

Mark? Anyone from Paizo? Is this being investigated?


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Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Furthermore! If the GM does decide to take pity and let it trigger more, then the player may still be unsatisfied and say "Well, I'm doing a terrible job protecting my friend, but at least I dealt some damage."

If the goal of the ability is to encourage an enemy to attack the Paladin, then it's working as intended when it never triggers. That's a big problem.

Sovereign Court

It's the exact same thing with Attack of opportunity guys! If the DM doesn't want it to trigger it won't.

Paladins have other class features that are more reliable, it is fine if one of the features is less reliable. The same way that fighters can't use attack of opportunity reliably.

Honestly it is fine. I do agree with the fact that it needs some buff or new feats to allow additional playstyle, and I proposed a few fixes previously in this post, but Retributive strike shouldn't be replaced with another ability.


It's a lot more situational than AOO, but I'm not sure if AOO can remain fighter exclusive without throwing the game off, since playtest data seem to indicate enemy casters and such pretty much acting with impunity.


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Darkorin wrote:

It's the exact same thing with Attack of opportunity guys! If the DM doesn't want it to trigger it won't.

Paladins have other class features that are more reliable, it is fine if one of the features is less reliable. The same way that fighters can't use attack of opportunity reliably.

Honestly it is fine. I do agree with the fact that it needs some buff or new feats to allow additional playstyle, and I proposed a few fixes previously in this post, but Retributive strike shouldn't be replaced with another ability.

AoO has 2 triggers by default, 3 via upgrade.

RS has 1.

Fighter AoO in the same time frame RS has triggered once has triggered 4 times.


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Darkorin wrote:
It's the exact same thing with Attack of opportunity guys! If the DM doesn't want it to trigger it won't.

Attack of Opportunity is much more likely to trigger than Retributive Strike, not to mention that it's also a better defensive feature than Retributive Strike, because it makes you "stickier" and better able to keep enemies away from your squishier allies in the first place.

Darkorin wrote:

Paladins have other class features that are more reliable, it is fine if one of the features is less reliable. The same way that fighters can't use attack of opportunity reliably.

Honestly it is fine. I do agree with the fact that it needs some buff or new feats to allow additional playstyle, and I proposed a few fixes previously in this post, but Retributive strike shouldn't be replaced with another ability.

The problem is that other core features, like Smite, are tied to this unreliable class feature - so no, it's not just "one of the features" that is unreliable. It's an unreliable feature that makes other features also unreliable.

Sovereign Court

Are you all ignoring the rest of my point? I'm saying that it does need a boost, and I gave not one example but two examples on how it could be improved and become great!

You're saying that it is entirely DM dependent? I give you other example of class features that are GM dependent! Then you just say how you prefer Attack of Opportunity, that's beside the point, the point was that other classes also have lesser class features that are DM dependent. You disregard my proposition to add feats that gives more flexibility to retributive strike, and then you say how great attack of opportunity is because you can make it trigger more easily by taking new feats.

I'm giving you example on how you can make great use of retributive strike with shield ally, you're saying that it's not the old smite and you're not happy with it.

Honestly, I'm giving time and time again examples on how to improve the ability and how you can use it effectively and it feels like I'm just hitting myself against a wall that focuses on the small part of my argument that you can bring down. I understand that some of you are sad that the PF1 Paladin is gone, but I think that it required some major retuning and that is why Paizo did what they did, otherwise they could have kept the old version around.

master_marshmallow wrote:
It's a lot more situational than AOO, but I'm not sure if AOO can remain fighter exclusive without throwing the game off, since playtest data seem to indicate enemy casters and such pretty much acting with impunity.

Really? You have access to all of the playtest data? We're at the first part of the playtest where people are mostly playing lvl 1 characters, I'm pretty sure it's too early to say that, but if you do have access to all of the playtest data showing that, I'd love to take a look at it and see how wrong I am.


Darkorin wrote:

Are you all ignoring the rest of my point? I'm saying that it does need a boost, and I gave not one example but two examples on how it could be improved and become great!

You're saying that it is entirely DM dependent? I give you other example of class features that are GM dependent! Then you just say how you prefer Attack of Opportunity, that's beside the point, the point was that other classes also have lesser class features that are DM dependent. You disregard my proposition to add feats that gives more flexibility to retributive strike, and then you say how great attack of opportunity is because you can make it trigger more easily by taking new feats.

I'm giving you example on how you can make great use of retributive strike with shield ally, you're saying that it's not the old smite and you're not happy with it.

Honestly, I'm giving time and time again examples on how to improve the ability and how you can use it effectively and it feels like I'm just hitting myself against a wall that focuses on the small part of my argument that you can bring down. I understand that some of you are sad that the PF1 Paladin is gone, but I think that it required some major retuning and that is why Paizo did what they did, otherwise they could have kept the old version around.

master_marshmallow wrote:
It's a lot more situational than AOO, but I'm not sure if AOO can remain fighter exclusive without throwing the game
...

Not to offend, but every class feature gets 'enhanced' by a chain of feats and we don't need more of them competing for just getting your class feature to be functional, that is terrible design philosophy as every class then has to decide which features they want to give up on progression wise in favor of a narrow path determined by spreading out long feat chains that limit player choices and reduce customization.

Adding movement to Retributive Strike may work, but the paladin doesn't really seem to be intended to be that mobile of a class given the focus on heavy armor. The design is in conflict with itself. It's amazing for 'guard the princess' type encounters because it gives the paladin something really important to do and we really should praise the ability for that, but I think it should not require feats to enhance it and that it should scale. I also think it should be a feat and a different class feature should be core.

I'd rather all the class features we have be designed to be complete functioning abilities and the feats we take to be genuine options that expand the utility of the characters, rather than just patching the bugs in weak class designs. Otherwise we'll end up with another situation where it takes 7 books just to make a competent fighter compared to other classes. That would be bad, we didn't like it last edition, and we won't like it this one.

As far as my access to data, all I have is the testimony of the forums and other message board reports. As well as my own data which suggested that ranged combat and spellcasting doesn't really care about stepping out of the threat range because most things don't pose a threat. When you can walk up to the goblins face and shoot him point-blank with the bow knowing full well they can do the same it changes the tactics of the game a lot and many of the tricks designed around the action system lose value. There's a bunch of feats that become incredibly situational and might not ever get to see play like Mobility or any of the other abilities that enhance movement to avoid AOOs given that AOOs are not really that common until you get to higher levels, at least by what I'm reading in the bestiary.


Darkorin wrote:
Are you all ignoring the rest of my point? I'm saying that it does need a boost, and I gave not one example but two examples on how it could be improved and become great!

Your ideas don't make it "become great," and your build that can use Retributive Strike effectively requires you to build in a very specific way (despite you saying that "paladins allow for a lot of flexibility"), doesn't come online until a very high level, and still doesn't mean you'll be getting to use Retributive Strike that often. Your feat ideas would improve the ability, but they're purely hypothetical fixes, they would have an opportunity cost meaning you need to narrow your build focus even further to make Retributive Strike good, and they don't fix the problem of too many Paladin abilities being tied to Retributive Strike, like smites, so that you'll basically never get to trigger those abilities. Your point about ranged paladins "not protecting" by attacking an enemy attacking their friends is also wrong (although I'm not a fan of ranged paladins either) - if something is attacking your allies, and you attack that thing, you ARE protecting them, that's exactly what Retributive Strike is supposed to be allowing you to do. However, it's also what an offensive feature would allow them to do.

Darkorin wrote:
You're saying that it is entirely DM dependent? I give you other example of class features that are GM dependent! Then you just say how you prefer Attack of Opportunity, that's beside the point, the point was that other classes also have lesser class features that are DM dependent. You disregard my proposition to add feats that gives more flexibility to retributive strike, and then you say how great attack of opportunity is because you can make it trigger more easily by taking new feats.

No, people are saying that yes, you won't get an AoO every round, but AoO is more universally applicable than Retributive Strike. For one thing, if a Paladin is the only melee character, or one of two melee PCs in the party, your chances to trigger a Retributive Strike will plummet, but your chances of getting an AoO don't change. Even ignoring that scenario, though, you're still far more likely to get an AoO than a Retributive Strike (4 times more likely, if OP recalls correctly). It's something every melee character would want, unlike Retributive Strike, which is only good with a few very specific builds (as you pointed out with your S&B example). Attack of Opportunity does not push you towards one specific build paradigm.

Darkorin wrote:
I'm giving you example on how you can make great use of retributive strike with shield ally, you're saying that it's not the old smite and you're not happy with it.

No, people are saying that if you want to make Retributive Strike any good, you have to focus most of your class feats on it, and go either S&B or take a Reach weapon (which doesn't work with your Shield ally idea but might actually let you get a few Ret. Strikes off once in a while, which is again the biggest problem with the ability).

The problem is not that "it's not Smite!" I'd be fine with swapping Ret. Strike for Divine Grace as the core feature, since that's something universally useful and iconic to a Paladin, and doesn't push you to a specific build. THAT is the problem with Retributive Strike as a core feature. Other offensive features like Smiting being tied to Ret. Strike are just a symptom of that (and a frustrating one, since Clerics get a vastly better Smite ability at level 4 than what the Paladin gets at level 9).
Darkorin wrote:
Honestly, I'm giving time and time again examples on how to improve the ability and how you can use it effectively and it feels like I'm just hitting myself against a wall that focuses on the small part of my argument that you can bring down.

Other people are telling you time and time again why they don't like the ability and that the ways you gave to use it effectively are part of the problem, which is that you are pushed into a narrower role than other classes are, because of Ret. Strike. You're not actually responding to anyone's points, either, you're just saying "well it's good if you do this and if they fix it how I want," but you're ignoring the fact that people have problems with the ability at a design level, because it is a core Paladin ability now with too many mechanics tied to it, and that it would be FINE as a level 2 feat, because that one change would make Paladins much more customizeable.

Darkorin wrote:
I understand that some of you are sad that the PF1 Paladin is gone, but I think that it required some major retuning and that is why Paizo did what they did, otherwise they could have kept the old version around.

You keep saying that you think the old paladin was OP but never give any reasons for it.


Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

There has been a lot of focus on how it could work given a static placeholder ally to dance around. Some people have mentioned that other classes might not pair too well with it at all, and I'd like to expand on that.

A typical group is 4 PCs, and from my experience a 2 front line and 2 backline distribution is pretty common. So, right there the paladin is down to one member to pair with during an ideal encounter where the front line holds off the attacks and the back line gets to perform without harassment. If your group has 3 ranged characters and one melee (admittedly rarer than 3 melee and 1 ranged) the Paladin's usefulness as a tank plummets.

Imagine a group of baddies coming around a corner. The backline wants the paladin to dive into the fray, whereas the paladin wants to stick close to the ranged characters, immediately bringing the fight closer to them. How irritating would it be to have your ostensible protector dancing around you, daring enemies to hit you, rather than holding them off at a choke point?

One of the best pairings to milk Retributive Strike would likely be a Barbarian, who likes to get into the fray, stay there, and soak hits (which trigger RS). Their damage threat means it'll be hard for an enemy to choose between killing them or the paladin.


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Darkorin wrote:

I have a paladin with Shield Ally, Shield Warden and Shield of Reckoning.

[...]

You were talking about 5-stepping away? Well... I can get Holy Wall and prevent you from acting this way! This means that if you're next to me you must choose between attacking me, attacking my ally or taking an AO. That seems like the enemy will have a real hard time!

This is not how Holy Wall works.

Difficult terrain is harder to enter, not harder to exit. You can't Step into difficult terrain, but you can Step out of difficult terrain. Holy Wall makes it harder to move near the paladin, but it does nothing to prevent enemy from moving away.

And Shield Warden alone prevents the use of retributive strike. You need another feat just to have shield warden not work against one of your core ability. It would be ok if retributive strike was an optional ability (so combining it and shield warden would be a very specific build), but since you're required by law to have retributive strike... The ability is as great as a barbarian feat with the requirement "when you're not raging" or a fighter feat with the requirement "when you use a weapon without expert proficiency".


master_marshmallow wrote:


Adding movement to Retributive Strike may work, but the paladin doesn't really seem to be intended to be that mobile of a class given the focus on heavy armor. The design is in conflict with itself. It's amazing for 'guard the princess' type encounters because it gives the paladin something really important to do and we really should praise the ability for that, but I think it should not require feats to enhance it and that it should scale. I also think it should be a feat and a different class feature should be core.

I just wanted to drop here and add that we may ought to expect the battlefield to be more mobile in this edition of the game, due to the action system. Any class who is tied down on the field may be left behind, or forced to focus on reach weapons. In 1e, everyone fought to FA, which means standing still. 2e, not so much.

Anyhow, it's just a niggling thought.


MuddyVolcano wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:


Adding movement to Retributive Strike may work, but the paladin doesn't really seem to be intended to be that mobile of a class given the focus on heavy armor. The design is in conflict with itself. It's amazing for 'guard the princess' type encounters because it gives the paladin something really important to do and we really should praise the ability for that, but I think it should not require feats to enhance it and that it should scale. I also think it should be a feat and a different class feature should be core.

I just wanted to drop here and add that we may ought to expect the battlefield to be more mobile in this edition of the game, due to the action system. Any class who is tied down on the field may be left behind, or forced to focus on reach weapons. In 1e, everyone fought to FA, which means standing still. 2e, not so much.

Anyhow, it's just a niggling thought.

Yeah, you're probably right. Of course, this makes heavy armor (which the Paladin is pushed towards) even worse, due to the movement penalty, which there's no way to counteract until you get to very high levels, take Fleet, and/or go Elf/Half-Elf to boost your movement. I realize this is off-topic but the penalties for heavy armor are just absurd, especially since Strength doesn't mitigate them - check out this video, for example, to see how mobile you could actually be in heavy armor.


I've been using RAE for years now, and I can attest that the action system does indeed make the game more mobile. A typical turn is generally move + attack twice, buff + attack twice, or move + buff + attack once.

Haste granted an extra action solely for primary attacks, which meant you could get in 2-3 attacks, a buff, and still move.

It was really fun and tactics mattered, a lot. AOOs made the game very tactically interesting.


I tried to use it again today in a 10th playtest. This time it was my Paladin along as an NPC.

I could not get it to fire. In all 3 encounters. I could not get it to fire. I had 3 players laughing at how insane I was going to to try to get it to fire.


I am going to start home testing a change to Retributive Strike tomorrow to allow the Paladin to move and strike against any enemy that strikes an ally providing that enemy is within 10 feet of the Paladin.

If an enemy is within 10 feet of Paladin and hits an enemy then the Paladin as a reaction can move 10 feet and attack with Retributive Strike as per normal. This must be a straight line toward the target and not through difficult terrain (IE like a 10 ft charge).


HWalsh wrote:

I am going to start home testing a change to Retributive Strike tomorrow to allow the Paladin to move and strike against any enemy that strikes an ally providing that enemy is within 10 feet of the Paladin.

If an enemy is within 10 feet of Paladin and hits an enemy then the Paladin as a reaction can move 10 feet and attack with Retributive Strike as per normal. This must be a straight line toward the target and not through difficult terrain (IE like a 10 ft charge).

I really appreciate your dedication to this, but I don't think this does anything to fix the fact that Reach weapons are vastly superior on a Paladin because of Ret. Strike. Still, please let us know how it goes, because I sure would like Paladins to end up with a useful core ability.


CBAnaesthesia wrote:
HWalsh wrote:

I am going to start home testing a change to Retributive Strike tomorrow to allow the Paladin to move and strike against any enemy that strikes an ally providing that enemy is within 10 feet of the Paladin.

If an enemy is within 10 feet of Paladin and hits an enemy then the Paladin as a reaction can move 10 feet and attack with Retributive Strike as per normal. This must be a straight line toward the target and not through difficult terrain (IE like a 10 ft charge).

I really appreciate your dedication to this, but I don't think this does anything to fix the fact that Reach weapons are vastly superior on a Paladin because of Ret. Strike. Still, please let us know how it goes, because I sure would like Paladins to end up with a useful core ability.

The problem is that the game's combat is hellishly mobile. Meaning that things move a lot since there is no real penalty for doing so aside from losing 1 attack, which at -8/-10 is not likely to hit. So you don't have a PF1 situation where people are standing around swinging at each other.

It is my theory that, moving 10 feet, then attacking, will allow a Paladin to use it more often. Yes, reach weapons are better there, but that should allow *something* if the Paladin can move 10 feet to attack.

This ability is great on paper, but almost useless in execution.

Note: I *wanted* to like this ability, a lot. I tried to make it work. It is just not good as it is written.


CBAnaesthesia wrote:
You keep saying that you think the old paladin was OP but never give any reasons for it.

PF1 Paladins came across as overpowered at a fair number of tables (the ones where casters didn't reach their full potential).

Level 5 Fighter: "I can move at full speed in medium armor, and I get a small bonus to attack and damage with certain weapons, and three bonus feats, and a +1 to saves against fear, which helps compensate for my poor Will saves! How about you?"
Level 5 Paladin: "I can detect evil and smite evil and I have the best saving throws and I can heal myself as a swift action and heal others in two different ways and cure conditions at the same time and I give my entire party +4 to saves against fear while being immune to fear myself and I can cast spells and use wands and I can choose between a full animal companion or the ability to empower my weapon..."


Matthew Downie wrote:
CBAnaesthesia wrote:
You keep saying that you think the old paladin was OP but never give any reasons for it.

PF1 Paladins came across as overpowered at a fair number of tables (the ones where casters didn't reach their full potential).

Level 5 Fighter: "I can move at full speed in medium armor, and I get a small bonus to attack and damage with certain weapons, and three bonus feats, and a +1 to saves against fear, which helps compensate for my poor Will saves! How about you?"
Level 5 Paladin: "I can detect evil and smite evil and I have the best saving throws and I can heal myself as a swift action and heal others in two different ways and cure conditions at the same time and I give my entire party +4 to saves against fear while being immune to fear myself and I can cast spells and use wands and I can choose between a full animal companion or the ability to empower my weapon..."

I could be wrong, but don't Fighter's still win in the DPR Olympics at least?

However, I do feel this is a bad example. The Fighter class has notoriously been underpowered in many regards, the paladin is just a 'better' class overall. It would be more properly compared to something like the barbarian in terms of what it gets to do. To chime in a little while I do agree paladins are a decently powerful class, they have never felt OP in my games.

They are good at keeping themselves alive and patching up people, but they aren't as strong as a Cleric nor as powerful as a Barbarian, they fill a middle ground of "Can do what it's meant to do competently without too much work". Can it do rediculous novas sometimes? Sure, but in a very narrow area. The paladin also has the benefit of being the ONE class at the table that if they do happen to be a little strong my players have never minded because how can you hate the guy who's healing you up while getting smacked on before turning to the bad guy and laying a beating for daring to hurt their friends?


HWalsh wrote:

I tried to use it again today in a 10th playtest. This time it was my Paladin along as an NPC.

I could not get it to fire. In all 3 encounters. I could not get it to fire. I had 3 players laughing at how insane I was going to to try to get it to fire.

So you got exactly what retributive strike is made for. Forcing the opponent to reposition or attack you. That you still don't get that the attack itself is not the point of the ability is beyond me.

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