Monks with less than 16 Dex are a trap.


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Uh, pretty much everything I wanted to communicate is in the subject.

To elaborate a little bit.

There's of course going to be ways to build a character in a game like pathfinder that is terribly unoptimized. Like a Barbarian that puts all their boosts into mental stats or an alchemist that doesn't boost int for whatever reason...

What makes the Monk a little different is that it's pretty MAD. It benefits from Str, Dex, Con, and Wis and it is very easy for someone to think that they should be able to mix and match these according to their character concepts.

Except that you can't make a slow bruiser that focuses Str and Con or a hard hitting mystic that boosts Str and Wis and leaves Dex behind as Dex is the ONLY way that I have found that can boost the monk's AC to an acceptable level for a melee martial class. It has to get at least three boosts in charater creation, if not four.

I don't know if this would be considered a problem or not but it does feel limiting.

I think a class feature that allows a Monk to replace Dex to AC with Wis to AC would allow for at least a somewhat greater variety of builds?

Str, Con would still be a problem though. I guess that idea overlaps too much with how Barbarians work though.


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1/ Monks are a trap (whether they have 16+ Dex or not)

2/ Not having Dex 16 is a trap, no melee character will ever see the level 3 without Dex 16. If you start at level 3, maybe some classes can have Dex 12 and an heavy armor?

3/ You shouldn't care about Con. Any character should pump up his primary stat and Dex (or Cha for Clerics: more heal reduce the importance in AC, and clerics can get a shield).

That's how you play Path 2. You have to use the One True Build: primary stat 18, Dex 16, dump Int, don't pump Con, half the classes are as useless as the monk. You can try something else than the One True Build, but the über-legendary stats of every monster will soon show you the way.


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I think in particular for low level monks (who do not get armor unlike other people who are expected to hang out in punching range) they really need some sort of defensive reaction like everybody else has access to.

I mean, if Barbarians and Fighters both get Sudden Charge, why can't Monks and Rogues both get Nimble Dodge?


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Monks are in a bad way and more MAD than ever.

They need Str to do damage, they need Dex not to get killed (and even with 16 it's not great), they need Wis for Ki power (yeah right), Con because they are in melee, and a Dragon Style monk needs Chr to Intimidate at later levels (PS. Intimidate should be based on Str not Chr). 5 stats.

Yep, monks are more dependent on multiple attributes than ever.

You'd think this would be one of the things that they would fix. You'd like there would be a really good and viable Str monk (like "Stone" from Daredevil, who has AC based on Str or perhaps temp hit points like a Barbarian), Dex Monk (who can still do good damage), and a ranged Ki monk that could basically do somewhat effective Ki blasts all day (like Madame Gao from Iron Fist).

Monks should be the best at Perception but they lag behind almost all classes.

The monk is in a sad state.

Paizo Employee

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You can do monk pretty effectively with low Dex, though it's certainly a more technical level of build. The fact that monks have some of the best mobility in the game alongside single-action flurry of blows means that they actually have more ability to stick and move. The fact that AoO isn't universal means that sticking and moving is a more consistently viable strategy. I've had a lot of success with my monk who's played at levels from 1-11 with pretty basic mobility strategies like:

Round 1-Stance >Move > Flurry
Round 2- Flurry > Strike > Move
Round 3- Move > Flurry > Strike

Where he's never staying adjacent to a foe for more than 1 round at a time and can whittle through their actions pretty quick just by virtue of being faster than pretty much every other bipedal opponent (if you've got something like Brawling Focus to help add slow 1 to enemies, you can make it very difficult for some enemies to even attempt to chase you). Once you start reaching higher levels and Wall Run, Flying Kick, and Wind Jump come into play you can augment those same basic strategies with three-dimensional movement and avoid a significant amount of damage without giving up much of your own, particularly since monks generally hit their MAP cap on their second action.

None of that is to say that the monk can't use a little love, but I've played a Monk who never put anything into DEX beyond the 12 he started with at 1st level and he's been a lead damage-dealer and held up through a wide variety of encounters all the way up into the latter half of play.


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Bracers of Armor can make up for *some* of the loss of DEX, but, yeah DEX is pretty important. It's really a question of WIS vs. STR. Do you want to be the strong monk or the ki-monk.

Doing the level 4 playtest my monk has 20 AC which is pretty decent. But even with only 14 DEX, she would still have 18 AC which isn't a significant cause for concern as that's right around where other martial classes are. Right now I'm testing 14 STR / 18 DEX, but you could probably get away with 18 STR / 14 DEX with no problem, take the +2 to damage and just get hit 10% more often. It has the added benefit of making Dragon Kick more viable as well.


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SuperSheep wrote:

Bracers of Armor can make up for *some* of the loss of DEX, but, yeah DEX is pretty important. It's really a question of WIS vs. STR. Do you want to be the strong monk or the ki-monk.

Doing the level 4 playtest my monk has 20 AC which is pretty decent. But even with only 14 DEX, she would still have 18 AC which isn't a significant cause for concern as that's right around where other martial classes are. Right now I'm testing 14 STR / 18 DEX, but you could probably get away with 18 STR / 14 DEX with no problem, take the +2 to damage and just get hit 10% more often. It has the added benefit of making Dragon Kick more viable as well.

Which is why I firmly believe that Monks should be able to substitute Dex with Wis to their AC/TAC. Let me be the strong ki-monk who's slower than molases, dammit!


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There's also the fact that the monk is, by far, the most mobile of the martial classes. The fact that you can take a move-and-a-half and still hit 3 times is pretty big.

Also you don't *need* wisdom anymore. If you don't need it to be crazy high if you do take it. All-in-all their need for stats isn't quite as bad as 1e.

Tiger monk also plays extremely well with Fighters. You can position yourself so that you can step 10 to avoid getting hit while guaranteeing that if they want to follow they're either going to waste 2 actions stepping or they're going to trigger an AoO while moving away.

They could use some love, but I don't think they're unplayable by any means.


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The added mobility is a pretty grand benefit. However for those who've managed to playtest (full disclosure I am theorycrafting still), that doesn't really help against ranged attacks for a low Dex monk right?


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I like that monks can stick and move, but at low levels many creatures move 35' or more. One stride doesn't get you away, it just eliminates their 3rd attack. Or they pound on someone else. I guess that's OK when your AC is bad?

If you want the enemy not to follow, you basically have to pair yourself with a fighter.

Silver Crusade

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In actual playtests I've been in the monk is doing pretty well. That mobility is very useful. As are the one action for 2 attacks.

Its a bit of a glass cannon but it hasn't been too bad in practice. While he attracts enemy attention he ALSO attracts party healing since he is quite effective so the healers tend to prioritize him staying up


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huh? monks work fine without 16 dex. my elf monk only has a 14. you get three actions per turn. your flurry gives you two attacks for one action. most monsters don't have AOO. my monk barely took any damage in the first adventure. stick and move. monks are great. I don't like masters of many styles being 16th level. but all in all the class rocks.

for range attackers, you have superior movement, and the new take cover actions work awesome. we have players use take cover in the advantures we have play tested so far.


Azih wrote:
The added mobility is a pretty grand benefit. However for those who've managed to playtest (full disclosure I am theorycrafting still), that doesn't really help against ranged attacks for a low Dex monk right?

Well, you can close on ranged people with that movement, which is significant, and/or pop in and out of cover as well. And I guess there's Deflect Arrows if you are really worried about ranged attacks.

Paizo Employee

Azih wrote:
The added mobility is a pretty grand benefit. However for those who've managed to playtest (full disclosure I am theorycrafting still), that doesn't really help against ranged attacks for a low Dex monk right?

Depends. You can close on archers really fast if you want to, which can immediately impose a -2 penalty on their attack rolls depending on their weapon type, and potentially give you screening on top of that. And/or you can move into cover for +2 - +4 AC. At the levels where monks get really good at three dimensional movement, it can be difficult for an archer to ever get more than one decent attack against them, if any, though that has a lot of additional variables based on the adventuring environment and group tactics.

Minor spoilers from The Lost Star, Part 1 of Doomsday Dawn:

In the Area A7 encounter in Doomsday Dawn a monk elf in one of my playtest games was actually focusing on primarily using Crane Stance and flurry while ducking in and out of cover around the room and almost always had an effective AC that was 1-4 points higher than her actual AC, meaning that she had the highest AC in the fight. She was a DEX-focused monk so her AC would have been good regardless, but even if her DEX had been 14 instead of 18 she still would have been the second hardest to hit in the group, just 1 AC behind the shield-using paladin. That was the 4th time I've run that adventure for a group and the only time the goblins were forced to drop their bows in an attempt to hit since they'd either get "blocked" by cover or end up giving the monk screening from their own allies.


Has anyone tried out a DEX monk? Unarmed attacks do have the Finesse trait, so I could see a DEX 18, STR 14 Monk be viable tbh.

Most of your damage will come from damage dice in this edition, anyways, so it might just be good.


Pathfinder Card Game, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I'm currently playing a DEX 18, STR 14 monk. It has worked pretty well, or as well as 2e allows. Basically you're dealing with ~50% miss chance even if you're well-statted.


I really like PossibleCabbage's idea of giving monks access to nimble dodge, seems flavorful and fitting and not any less balanced than the dex based rogue having it.


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Wolfism wrote:
I really like PossibleCabbage's idea of giving monks access to nimble dodge, seems flavorful and fitting and not any less balanced than the dex based rogue having it.

I hope not. I like the classes being very unique now. I hope they keep that general design.


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ikarinokami wrote:
Wolfism wrote:
I really like PossibleCabbage's idea of giving monks access to nimble dodge, seems flavorful and fitting and not any less balanced than the dex based rogue having it.
I hope not. I like the classes being very unique now. I hope they keep that general design.

We already have several feats cross listed between several classes (Fighters and Barbarians share Sudden Charge; Fighters and Rangers share Double Slice; Clerics, Druids, Sorcerers, and Wizards share Reach Spell, etc.)

So while there are many rogue feats which should be the exclusive province of the rogue, why is "nimble dodge" one of them? I mean, we could always give monks something similar with a different name, but monks need a defensive reaction at low levels (before anybody has bracers.)


Agree with cabbage they need a dodge reaction.


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SuperSheep wrote:
Doing the level 4 playtest my monk has 20 AC which is pretty decent. But even with only 14 DEX, she would still have 18 AC which isn't a significant cause for concern as that's right around where other martial classes are. Right now I'm testing 14 STR / 18 DEX, but you could probably get away with 18 STR / 14 DEX with no problem, take the +2 to damage and just get hit 10% more often. It has the added benefit of making Dragon Kick more viable as well.

Level 4 monsters have +11 to hit. The difference between AC 18 and AC 20 is more than +30% damages. That's definitely not the same. Not to mention the occasional level 6 monster and his +15 to hit.

How do other martials manage to have AC 18? 10 + 4 (proficiency) + 6 (full plate) = 20. That's with Dex 10 and no shield. Are the other martials all Barbarians? Then yes: Monks are better than Barbarians. That's not a high bar to reach.

Ssalarn wrote:
Depends. You can close on archers really fast if you want to, which can immediately impose a -2 penalty on their attack rolls depending on their weapon type, and potentially give you screening on top of that. And/or you can move into cover for +2 - +4 AC. At the levels where monks get really good at three dimensional movement, it can be difficult for an archer to ever get more than one decent attack against them, if any, though that has a lot of additional variables based on the adventuring environment and group tactics.

Awesome.

Now you're in melee with a ranged monster. Except every ranged monster is just as powerful in melee as at range - or even more powerful in melee. Now you're in melee with a closet troll and you have a low AC.

Not to mention the monsters you can't reach. Like a young dragon who fly, breath fire and casts spells.


PossibleCabbage wrote:
ikarinokami wrote:
Wolfism wrote:
I really like PossibleCabbage's idea of giving monks access to nimble dodge, seems flavorful and fitting and not any less balanced than the dex based rogue having it.
I hope not. I like the classes being very unique now. I hope they keep that general design.

We already have several feats cross listed between several classes (Fighters and Barbarians share Sudden Charge; Fighters and Rangers share Double Slice; Clerics, Druids, Sorcerers, and Wizards share Reach Spell, etc.)

So while there are many rogue feats which should be the exclusive province of the rogue, why is "nimble dodge" one of them? I mean, we could always give monks something similar with a different name, but monks need a defensive reaction at low levels (before anybody has bracers.)

because it's rogue thing, and monks don't need it. I would much rather them focus on monk beings monks, that stealing feature from rogue.

for example. I think master of mnany styles is one of the real issues with the monk class. it's take 16 levels to become what a lot of people would feel is the archetypal monk.

there should also be a fused style class feat

or a style that gives bonus's to the athletics combat manuvers. I would much rather have abilities unique to the monk, than abilities copied and pasted from another class, that end up diminishing both classes.


Pathfinder Card Game, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I do feel like they need some sort of mobility-based AC bump given their nature. It could be that they get an AC bonus based on their movement. Or something. And yes, I know they can get that as a feat, but it feels like it should be more of less baked in.


I'd rather if they didn't have to rely on movement to survive in melee, this whole thread is based on the idea that the Stone mountain sort of monk who relies on strength and getting in peoples face and holding the line doesn't really work in this system right now.

Also I really like the idea of a maneuver based style. Here's hoping they add that in later.


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Blocking, Parrying, and Dodging are pretty iconic parts of kung fu movies and a reaction designed to emulate that would be a pretty good addition to the game.


I don't remember, do any monk features stop working with a shield? If not, a general feat on shields could be worth taking. All though, it might effectively lower you unarmored proficiency.

I guess there are Parry weapons, which I think should work without monastic weaponry, but they still don't use a reaction. I agree a defensive reaction seems like a big thing they are missing.


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Wolfism wrote:

I'd rather if they didn't have to rely on movement to survive in melee, this whole thread is based on the idea that the Stone mountain sort of monk who relies on strength and getting in peoples face and holding the line doesn't really work in this system right now.

Also I really like the idea of a maneuver based style. Here's hoping they add that in later.

That particular style could get a Natural Armor kind of defense built into it without necessarily negating mobile sources of defense.

Paizo Employee

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Gaterie wrote:


Ssalarn wrote:
Depends. You can close on archers really fast if you want to, which can immediately impose a -2 penalty on their attack rolls depending on their weapon type, and potentially give you screening on top of that. And/or you can move into cover for +2 - +4 AC. At the levels where monks get really good at three dimensional movement, it can be difficult for an archer to ever get more than one decent attack against them, if any, though that has a lot of additional variables based on the adventuring environment and group tactics.

Awesome.

Now you're in melee with a ranged monster. Except every ranged monster is just as powerful in melee as at range - or even more powerful in melee. Now you're in melee with a closet troll and you have a low AC.

Not to mention the monsters you can't reach. Like a young dragon who fly, breath fire and casts spells.

If they're using longbows, then your effective AC against the one you're hitting just went up by 2 and probably by 3 against any other archers thanks to critting. If they're using shortbows, they have a smaller damage die and you can still get the benefits of screening from their allies. Since the thread is focused on low DEX monks and you probably have a pretty competitive Athletics score, you can also Grapple > Flurry to immobilize and debuff your opponent while holding them in place to act as screening (and still have an action left over.)

If it's a flying dragon, monks have Flying Kick, Wall Run, Wild Wind Stance (which has the added benefits of ignoring screening and increasing your AC against ranged attacks, making it doubly useful against ranged enemies), and Wind Jump all as options to get into range (as well as skill feats like Wall Jump that can be useful), and having some of the best saves in the game will take a lot of sting out of spells and breath weapons.

None of which is to say the monk couldn't use some more goodies; I'd love to see things like ki blast becoming a three action variable power like heal with longer and shorter ranges, more styles that are favorable (thematically and mechanically) to low DEX monks, and more reactions for the class in general. It does benefit a lot from the new system in ways that aren't immediately obvious though, and the more you play a monk taking advantage of all its speed boosts and mobility options, the more effective it becomes.


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ikarinokami wrote:
because it's rogue thing, and monks don't need it. I would much rather them focus on monk beings monks, that stealing feature from rogue.

So how is "I dodge out of the way of your attack" something which is more iconic for the rogue than the monk, anyway? It seems monks have always been good at dodging (they got dodge as a bonus feat in PF1 and could spend ki to get +4 dodge AC for one round) and if you're not going to put on armor it seems like "don't be where they are swinging" is going to be the strategy for everybody, just like "swing real hard" is going to be the strategy of people with very large weapons regardless of class.

I'm pretty sure that survivability of low level monks is pretty contingent on luck, since monster crits will end you quickly so some kind of defensive reaction is definitely warranted.

Heck, if you don't want to reprint the exact class feat, make an alternative to "Ki Strike" as an entry level ki power which costs 1 Ki Point:

Ki Dodge
[[R]] trigger: you are targeted by an attack you can see.
Step, and gain a +2 conditional bonus to AC until the start of your next turn. The triggering attack resolves against this AC.

It's better than nimble dodge because it moves you (mobility is more a monk thing than a rogue thing) and it can work against multiple attacks, but unlike nimble dodge it expends a finite resource so it's not an "every round" thing.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:


Ki Dodge
[[R]] trigger: you are targeted by an attack you can see.
Step, and gain a +2 conditional bonus to AC until the start of your next turn. The triggering attack resolves against this AC.

It's better than nimble dodge because it moves you (mobility is more a monk thing than a rogue thing) and it can work against multiple attacks, but unlike nimble dodge it expends a finite resource so it's not an "every round" thing.

This would give some wiggle room for Monks to move some points out of DEX and into STR/WIS.


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Ooh, I like that ki dodge a lot. It is a much more palpable ki entry than ki strike.

Paizo Employee

Ssalarn wrote:

If they're using longbows, then your effective AC against the one you're hitting just went up by 2 and probably by 3 against any other archers thanks to critting.

Probably obvious in context, but I just noticed that the quote above said "critting" when I meant "screening".

Also, I find I'm a bit of a fan of the Ki Dodge idea as well.


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Captain Morgan wrote:
Ooh, I like that ki dodge a lot. It is a much more palpable ki entry than ki strike.

I feel like the basic problem with Ki Strike is that you will never use it once you get better ki powers and you want to save ki points for self-healing, teleporting, flying, AoE, etc. But "save your bacon as a reaction" is always going to be relevant.

I also figure that putting a Step action in there gives it nice synergy with tiger and wolf style, but for different reasons.


If you step out of their reach does the attack auto miss?


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
I feel like the basic problem with Ki Strike is that you will never use it once you get better ki powers and you want to save ki points for self-healing, teleporting, flying, AoE, etc. But "save your bacon as a reaction" is always going to be relevant.

Ki Strike being nothing more than a feat tax to get to other Ki Powers is a topic of its own that needs to be addressed. With how small the Ki Pool is no matter what boosting a single strike with a non scaling +1 to hit is a joke, especially considering that it does not stack with actually useful buffs like the bards Inspire Courage.


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Captain Morgan wrote:
If you step out of their reach does the attack auto miss?

Well, my intention was to make this work like dodging panache, where it doesn't cause the attack to miss but the opponent is unable to follow up the triggering attack with other attacks without spending an action to step or having some ability that allows them to follow.

Since "attack, then prevent a full counterattack by moving away" is sort of the monk's thing in PF2, having part of this be part of a reaction fits.


Captain Morgan wrote:

I don't remember, do any monk features stop working with a shield? If not, a general feat on shields could be worth taking. All though, it might effectively lower you unarmored proficiency.

I guess there are Parry weapons, which I think should work without monastic weaponry, but they still don't use a reaction. I agree a defensive reaction seems like a big thing they are missing.

Monk features don't stop, but you take the lower of Shield or armor proficiency when using a shield (or unarmoured proficiency in the Monk's case), which means AC bonus goes from +2 (Expert unarmoured) to 0 (-2 untrained Shield proficiency, +2 using a shield). Not really worth it.

Parry weapons work, and you don't have to have proficiency to be able to parry.

I think the best way to emulate Dodges, blocks and Parries would be to give them better than average unarmoured proficiency...which they already have done. There you go, Dodges, parries and Blocks already baked in!

Seriously, though, at low levels, Monks do have low AC. You either have to invest heavily in DEX (not a bad idea anyway), or use maneuvers to hit and run. At Higher levels, AC improves a lot (I believe it's generally better than anyone else?, plus TAC is better, as are saves)


I think monks should have a counterattack reaction. or a counterattack built into the increase of AC.

+1 or 2 to AC and if melee attack misses, perform a melee strike on the attacker.

Paizo Employee

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Chinmoku wrote:

I think monks should have a counterattack reaction. or a counterattack built into the increase of AC.

+1 or 2 to AC and if melee attack misses, perform a melee strike on the attacker.

They do have that. That's almost exactly what Crane Flutter does.


I played a Strength monk at level 1 and it was fine. It was middling in how much damage it took and upper middle in how much it dealt. I was content. Moving around is helpful. I admittedly didn't have good Wisdom or great Constitution. My highest were Strength and Dexterity. It was fine

That said, the idea of Kai Dodge sounds great


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Put me down as in support for Ki Dodge. A mobility-based counter is perfect for a Monk, and Monks need a reaction at lower levels.

I will specify that the rules do need to adjudicate precisely how the whole "moving out of the way of an attack" resolves. What happens if a Monk steps behind cover, or behind an ally (screened), etc.


I'm here for a baseline Monk reaction.


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Azih wrote:

Uh, pretty much everything I wanted to communicate is in the subject.

To elaborate a little bit.

There's of course going to be ways to build a character in a game like pathfinder that is terribly unoptimized. Like a Barbarian that puts all their boosts into mental stats or an alchemist that doesn't boost int for whatever reason...

What makes the Monk a little different is that it's pretty MAD. It benefits from Str, Dex, Con, and Wis and it is very easy for someone to think that they should be able to mix and match these according to their character concepts.

Except that you can't make a slow bruiser that focuses Str and Con or a hard hitting mystic that boosts Str and Wis and leaves Dex behind as Dex is the ONLY way that I have found that can boost the monk's AC to an acceptable level for a melee martial class. It has to get at least three boosts in charater creation, if not four.

I don't know if this would be considered a problem or not but it does feel limiting.

I think a class feature that allows a Monk to replace Dex to AC with Wis to AC would allow for at least a somewhat greater variety of builds?

Str, Con would still be a problem though. I guess that idea overlaps too much with how Barbarians work though.

It's only a trap if you try and do everything all at once. That being said, certain ways to build monks are indeed traps (such as having a Wisdom score at or above 14). A Monk with 18 Dexterity and 16 Strength and not worrying about anything else being absolutely mandatory (12 in Constitution, and 12 in either Wisdom or Charisma is passable) is probably the best way to build them in terms of combat, since you'll have 16 AC, have +5 to-hit (only one behind Fighter), and deal 1D6+3 damage. This doesn't include Style options (which can further increase AC or increase damage dice), and is honestly not that bad. (Our fighter in Lost Star actually only had 15 AC, so it's less than what's provided here.) The Monk's AC will only scale higher than normal through Crane Style choices (not really required here), Bracers of Armor, and Dexterity increases (though this only occurs 3 times, once at 10, again at 14, and one last time at 20 if starting at 18). The fun part is if you decide to spend a General feat on Shield Proficiency and thereby benefit even further than Shields (remember, the Monk Style feats only require you to not have Armor on, didn't say anything about shields). The downside to this is that this isn't really an option until the higher levels due to it requiring the Light Armor proficiency tax (which is also a feat), so it's problematic to say the least, but does serve as another outlet for Monk survivability.

Another crazy option (until they nerf Fighter Dedication) is to be an "Armored Monk," taking Fighter Dedication at 2nd level (having an 18 Strength and only 12 Dexterity, thereby possibly allowing a higher Wisdom and/or Constitution), and going from there. You can wear armor at 1st level, you just suffer a -2 penalty for it (so a Monk in Breastplate gains only 2 AC [and no TAC]); difficult, but workable at 1st level. Unfortunately, the problem here now becomes "Why didn't I just play a Fighter?" Because there isn't any major incentive to be a Monk other than to just say you're a Monk, so it really harms your class identity. But at the very least, it's an option.

I do agree that Monks do need better build paths to work with. I wouldn't mind if Monks had a class feat called "Ki Armor," which lets them add their Wisdom modifier as an Item Bonus to AC (this way it doesn't stack with wearing any actual armor or from Bracers of Armor). This way, a Monk who decides to have less Dexterity to benefit from their Wisdom for Ki options isn't an absolutely easy target, and we know that a Monk can't have higher than 16 Wisdom at the most, so compared to a Dexterity Monk, they lose out on AC, Reflex Saves, and other Dexterity-based goodies to gain their Wisdom goodies on a reduced basis.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:

I think in particular for low level monks (who do not get armor unlike other people who are expected to hang out in punching range) they really need some sort of defensive reaction like everybody else has access to.

I mean, if Barbarians and Fighters both get Sudden Charge, why can't Monks and Rogues both get Nimble Dodge?

Yes to Nimble Dodge to monks, would make perfect sense.

Grand Lodge

Perhaps a feat that allows monks to consider monk weapons (such as staves, kama, sai, etc) for a reaction similar to shield block. You snap your weapon up to deflect a blow dealing a dent to the weapon and potentially breaking it.

you wouldn't add the "raise shield" action, so there wouldn't be the bonus to ac, but you'd be able to mitigate a little.

Have later feats allow you to instead of destroying a two-handed weapon you are using when reaching 0 HP, it just becomes two single handed simple weapons with the fragile condition. classic Jackie Chan.

Maybe a thematic and interesting way to solve the problem.


So this thread seem focused on Monk abilities, but I think it also raises other point: character build process itself.
I think there should be clearer guidelines on how game expects you to choose stat bumps, including backgrounds.
I.e., that backgrounds are expected to boost your primary stat for your class (which any can do thru free choice boost).
And that you want secondary stats to have boost from race or background.
It's clear system now expects, if not TOTAL minmaxing, a moderate degree of that, so just be clear and upfront about it.

Now, there may be some viable build that doesn't need all this, but that is probably pretty niche, considering tight math of system.
Better to just make clear the standard expectation, so people don't expect something that isn't realistic.
Likewise, many mechanics should have basic explanation of their system dynamics, indicating their common utility in action economy etc.
Much of this isn't that compicated, but by same token, there is no reason EVERYBODY shouldn't have clarity on basic dynamics like that.


Darrag Oathsbane wrote:

Perhaps a feat that allows monks to consider monk weapons (such as staves, kama, sai, etc) for a reaction similar to shield block. You snap your weapon up to deflect a blow dealing a dent to the weapon and potentially breaking it.

you wouldn't add the "raise shield" action, so there wouldn't be the bonus to ac, but you'd be able to mitigate a little.

Have later feats allow you to instead of destroying a two-handed weapon you are using when reaching 0 HP, it just becomes two single handed simple weapons with the fragile condition. classic Jackie Chan.

Maybe a thematic and interesting way to solve the problem.

MONASTIC WEAPONRY Feat 1

Monk
You gain access to uncommon weapons with the monk trait, and become
proficient in simple and martial monk weapons. Your proficiency rank for these weapons
matches your proficiency rank for unarmed attacks, and you can use melee monk
weapons with any of your monk feats or monk abilities that normally require unarmed
attacks, though you can’t use these weapons if a monk feat or ability requires you to use
a single specific attack, such as Crane Stance.

The Bo staff is a martial 1d8 bludgeoning weapon with the traits monk, parry, reach, and trip.

Parry This weapon can be used defensively to block attacks. While
wielding this weapon, you can spend an action to position your
weapon defensively, gaining a +1 circumstance bonus to AC
until the start of your next turn.

A monk with Monastic Weaponry could take a Parry action with a bo staff each turn for a +1 circumstance bonus to AC, half the +2 from raising a shield but without the Shield Block option. For Darrag Oathsbane's suggestion, all we need is a monk feat that allows a shield block with a parrying weapon. For the full Jackie Chan style, the GM should allow improvised weapons that resemble a bo staff to also parry.

MONK: After my flurry, I grab the broom beside the closet and parry with it.
GM: The orc raider swings her greataxe at you and hits.
MONK: Block with the broom.
GM: It absorbs 3 damage and breaks in half. You take 8 damage.
MONK: Are the broom halves useful as improvised bo staves?
GM: Yeah, but they have hardness 1.

CORRECTION: Page 291 says in a footnote on a table, "* When calculating AC while carrying a shield, apply the lower of your armor proficiency rank or your shield proficiency rank." If this applies to parrying weapons, then parrying does not work for 1st- and 2nd-level monks. A monk's unarmored defense proficiency rank is expert. A monk's proficiency in unarmed strikes and monastic weaponry is trained until 3rd level. Trained is -1 lower than expert so it would cancel out the +1 circumstance bonus from parrying.


Mathmuse wrote:
Darrag Oathsbane wrote:

Perhaps a feat that allows monks to consider monk weapons (such as staves, kama, sai, etc) for a reaction similar to shield block. You snap your weapon up to deflect a blow dealing a dent to the weapon and potentially breaking it.

you wouldn't add the "raise shield" action, so there wouldn't be the bonus to ac, but you'd be able to mitigate a little.

Have later feats allow you to instead of destroying a two-handed weapon you are using when reaching 0 HP, it just becomes two single handed simple weapons with the fragile condition. classic Jackie Chan.

Maybe a thematic and interesting way to solve the problem.

MONASTIC WEAPONRY Feat 1

Monk
You gain access to uncommon weapons with the monk trait, and become
proficient in simple and martial monk weapons. Your proficiency rank for these weapons
matches your proficiency rank for unarmed attacks, and you can use melee monk
weapons with any of your monk feats or monk abilities that normally require unarmed
attacks, though you can’t use these weapons if a monk feat or ability requires you to use
a single specific attack, such as Crane Stance.

The Bo staff is a martial 1d8 bludgeoning weapon with the traits monk, parry, reach, and trip.

Parry This weapon can be used defensively to block attacks. While
wielding this weapon, you can spend an action to position your
weapon defensively, gaining a +1 circumstance bonus to AC
until the start of your next turn.

A monk with Monastic Weaponry could take a Parry action with a bo staff each turn for a +1 circumstance bonus to AC, half the +2 from raising a shield but without the Shield Block option. For Darrag Oathsbane's suggestion, all we need is a monk feat that allows a shield block with a parrying weapon. For the full Jackie Chan style, the GM should allow improvised weapons that resemble a bo staff to also parry.

MONK: After my flurry, I grab the broom beside the closet and parry with it.
GM: The orc raider swings her greataxe at you and
...

you don't need monastic weapons, or any sort of proficiency, to Parry with a Bo staff.

actually, since Bo's are twohanded, it's better, even for monks, to use a main-gause since it's one handed and gives the same +1.

but keep in mind, that some stances (wolf/tiger/crane) require your hands to deal their respective stance strikes, not "any body part" as per simply unarmed attacks (and dragon stance requires your legs, but that's besides the point).


shroudb wrote:

you don't need monastic weapons, or any sort of proficiency, to Parry with a Bo staff.

actually, since Bo's are twohanded, it's better, even for monks, to use a main-gause since it's one handed and gives the same +1.

but keep in mind, that some stances (wolf/tiger/crane) require your hands to deal their respective stance strikes, not "any body part" as per simply unarmed attacks (and dragon stance requires your legs, but that's besides the point).

I had not noticed that the bo staff is two-handed. I mix up bo staff and jo staff. Thank you for pointing that out. Under the current rules, changing the grip to two-handed takes an action. The dwarven clan dagger is also a one-handed parry weapon, but they are uncommon.

I added a correction to my comment in which proficiency might matter. If using a weapon with untrained proficiency to parry, would the monk's proficiency for AC drop to untrained?


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Why should it?

Weapon proficiency is for when you attack.

You don't use it to attack.

PS : not saying I agree with it. But rules-wise, so far, that's how it works.

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