All these TPKs. Curious:


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We have had a string of TPKs. Even a hero point a piece couldn't save my parties of four (and they even had a cleric!) Most of us have been playing PF1 since its earlier years so that might be what's crippling us? Are we "playing wrong?"

And it felt weird to sleep after every fight in a small dungeon like some have suggested.

We never even met the Quasits funny enough.


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MadMars wrote:

We have had a string of TPKs. Even a hero point a piece couldn't save my parties of four (and they even had a cleric!) Most of us have been playing PF1 since its earlier years so that might be what's crippling us? Are we "playing wrong?"

And it felt weird to sleep after every fight in a small dungeon like some have suggested.

We never even met the Quasits funny enough.

If you are honed to surviving in 3rd Ed/PF1 (which can be rough in the early levels), PF2 should ease off on that need of honing, especially to be new-player-friendly.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Were they doing things like looking for threats? The Ooze is only dangerous if the party walks right on top of it AND it wins initiative. Otherwise it should be an easy fight against an enemy who can't get to you. Its passive Stealth is only DC 16 so you'd hope a full party would be able to spot it if they were looking.

I've seen the Goblins been touted as being particularly hard, ganging up on people and using decent tactics, but they are described as being preoccupied building an idol (thus don't have weapons drawn) and their tactics are to charge in howling.

The other areas are optional and don't chase players, so unless people are unlucky the only reason I see a TPK to centipedes is if the group stands in the room surrounded by superior numbers and doesn't even attempt to move into bottleneck position (at which point they'd see the Centipedes withdraw.)


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Malk_Content wrote:
Were they doing things like looking for threats? The Ooze is only dangerous if the party walks right on top of it AND it wins initiative. Otherwise it should be an easy fight against an enemy who can't get to you. Its passive Stealth is only DC 16 so you'd hope a full party would be able to spot it if they were looking.

Sometimes the dice just go wrong. "Only" a 16 DC is a 50% chance of success for an Expert in perception with a max Wisdom. Which classes are Experts in perception? Barbarian, Bard, Fighter, Ranger, and Rogue. Which of those classes has Wisdom as a key ability? Your hint is: none of them. It's not possible to even have a 50% chance of success here unless you really build at the margins.

So realistically, your best Perception modifier is typically going to be your Cleric and the rest of the party is probably averaging a +2. That means your party of four has a roughly 80% chance of succeeding based on the "at least one success" law of probability. That's still a 1 in 5 chance of failure.

The problem with this game (err, one of the problems) is that the margins are tight. When something is able to get in your face for three attacks, and their attack bonuses are +2 above yours across the board, you end up in trouble very quickly. So failing a Perception check against a hidden enemy can be pretty deadly.


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John Mechalas wrote:
"Only" a 16 DC is a 50% chance of success for an Expert in perception with a max Wisdom. Which classes are Experts in perception? Barbarian, Bard, Fighter, Ranger, and Rogue. Which of those classes has Wisdom as a key ability? Your hint is: none of them. It's not possible to even have a 50% chance of success here unless you really build at the margins.

I did a quick review of how ability scores are generated, and it's actually impossible under the rules for a character to get an 18 in a non-key ability score. You get three boost "rounds" (ancestry, background, and free) plus a fourth boost in your key stat. Since you can't boost the same ability more than once in each round, the maximum score for a non-key ability is 16.

So it's impossible for a Level 1 character to have even a 50% chance of beating the +6 Stealth creatures in Lost Star. The best you'll get is your cleric or druid at +5 (+4 ability, +1 level, +0 trained) or one of the above classes with a 16 Wis at +5 (+3 ability, +1 level, +1 expert).

I have nearly had it with this game. I'm almost to the point of hyperbole, asking why the designers hate fun, or did anyone think this stuff through?


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Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

I get the sense that some people define "fun" as being overpowered for the critters and situations one meets. :-(


Ed Reppert wrote:
I get the sense that some people define "fun" as being overpowered for the critters and situations one meets. :-(

It's not so much that, it's the high chance of whiffing (which 45%-50% is), people generally don't like that, I have seen it as a source of frustration in 3rd Ed/PF1 (RotR campaign).


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Hm. I haven't done the math, but it seems like that would only apply to critters of equal level to the PC. If they're lower level, the chance of a miss should drop, no?

If the chance of whiffing is high, isn't that an indication that maybe some other solution than fighting might be a good idea (granting that sometimes you don't have a choice)?


Ed Reppert wrote:

Hm. I haven't done the math, but it seems like that would only apply to critters of equal level to the PC. If they're lower level, the chance of a miss should drop, no?

If the chance of whiffing is high, isn't that an indication that maybe some other solution than fighting might be a good idea (granting that sometimes you don't have a choice)?

Sure, solutions other than fighting are great, but that's neither here nor there; yes, against same level enemies, people expect not to whiff so much, usually against higher level enemies is when you expect to whiff more.

Maybe people just have to get used to the new paradigm (I am so sick of that word, sorry).


Ed Reppert wrote:

If the chance of whiffing is high, isn't that an indication that maybe some other solution than fighting might be a good idea (granting that sometimes you don't have a choice)?

The problem is that the monsters are built so that if you whiff in combat, your chances of using skills against them (like sneaking past them) are even worse.


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Ed Reppert wrote:
I get the sense that some people define "fun" as being overpowered for the critters and situations one meets. :-(

No, my definition of "fun" includes not making every level-appropriate encounter a 50% or worse die roll for a character with optimal stats, and not having one or two PC's drop to within an inch of their life in every combat encounter.

Let me be clear: This game sucks. It sucks because the mechanics suck. Without optimal stats, you can't even get a 50/50 chance of beating DC's. The bounded accuracy baked into it has a band so narrow that straying from optimum puts you in mortal peril because the enemies are +2 better than you at everything. On top of that, the actions you are allowed in the 3-action system let you spam encounters with attacks and combat maneuvers and whatnot, and that applies to enemies too, so when you blow that 50% check (because you are going to) you end up on the losing side of the action economy facing multiple attack rolls. At Level 1, that's deadly.

Edited to add: And on top of that, the mechanics have created nonsensical outcomes, like the cleric being the best character at, say, searching for traps, and the cleric typically being first in initiative. Why? Because these things are based on Perception which is tied to Wisdom. So the cleric is better than the rogue at rogue-like things.

Edited again to add: And a cleric is required because in combat healing is a necessity and only the cleric is good at it. And when your cleric goes down, the party is in big trouble.

That is not my definition of fun. My definition of fun does not include "high risk of creating a new character" after the first game session.


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It seems like the game might work better if you usually met groups of enemies about three levels below you. That way, you can feel competent with most of your actions, and as long as there's enough enemies you can still be challenged.

The problem is, this can't happen when you're level 1. There's no CR minus two.


The way the skill system works you're not going to get a better chance that way than with your best attack. That's not an exaggeration, it's the way it's set up. You can try to avoid interacting with the enemy at all, you can try expendable items or spells etc. to get a 1-2 point advantage (intimidate can add 2 more vs. saves), and you can try stuff outside the usual combat paradigm like doing some persistent damage then running away if your group's on board with that.

Optimised fighters can get up to 65% vs same-level monsters on their first attack once their better weapon skills kick in, some other characters can get 55-60%.

Apparently the monsters will drop a couple of points in their skills when an update to that comes out.

It's fairly hard to die now unless the party either has to retreat (leaving you behind) or a TPK results.

It still doesn't look as good as the games I like but it might yet change.


Mats Öhrman wrote:
Ed Reppert wrote:

If the chance of whiffing is high, isn't that an indication that maybe some other solution than fighting might be a good idea (granting that sometimes you don't have a choice)?

The problem is that the monsters are built so that if you whiff in combat, your chances of using skills against them (like sneaking past them) are even worse.

Not to mention sneaking an entire party by any monster is now extremely difficult, due to the way sneaking works. By some readings of the rules, you even wind up having to make three sneak checks per character every round until sufficiently far enough away from the monster.

Grand Lodge

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I think DCs should be set with an assumed starting stat at 16 rather than 18, and also assume no magic involved. Magic, whether spells or items should make things easier, not be a requirement.


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Impotent players who are hard to kill sounds like a recipe for boredom. How am I supposed to keep players engaged when they have a reasonable chance of making 0 contribution on their turn. "Hey, at least you're still alive!" is just too low a bar for fun.


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ErichAD wrote:
Impotent players who are hard to kill sounds like a recipe for boredom. How am I supposed to keep players engaged when they have a reasonable chance of making 0 contribution on their turn. "Hey, at least you're still alive!" is just too low a bar for fun.

There's a lot of middle ground between OP and TPK.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Matthew Downie wrote:
The problem is, this can't happen when you're level 1. There's no CR minus two.

"Level 0 creatures are weaker than normal, counting as a “party level – 2” creature for a 1st-level party" -- Playtest Bestiary, page 21, last paragraph under "Choosing Creatures".


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John Mechalas wrote:
ErichAD wrote:
Impotent players who are hard to kill sounds like a recipe for boredom. How am I supposed to keep players engaged when they have a reasonable chance of making 0 contribution on their turn. "Hey, at least you're still alive!" is just too low a bar for fun.
There's a lot of middle ground between OP and TPK.

I must be missing your point. I'd put OP and TPK in the "recipe for boredom" pile along with the high chance of doing nothing.


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ErichAD wrote:
I must be missing your point. I'd put OP and TPK in the "recipe for boredom" pile along with the high chance of doing nothing.

A theme has emerged in the Playtest discussions on the forums: When there's a request that the designers just back off the difficulty or let players have some more freedom in power level, someone always turns up and says "Some players will never be satisfied unless their characters are OP and stomping on every ncounter". As if that's the only other option.

It isn't, and it's a tiresome argument.


John Mechalas wrote:
ErichAD wrote:
I must be missing your point. I'd put OP and TPK in the "recipe for boredom" pile along with the high chance of doing nothing.

A theme has emerged in the Playtest discussions on the forums: When there's a request that the designers just back off the difficulty or let players have some more freedom in power level, someone always turns up and says "Some players will never be satisfied unless their characters are OP and stomping on every ncounter". As if that's the only other option.

It isn't, and it's a tiresome argument.

I see now, thanks. I figure it's your standard internet hyperbole. It's hard for some folk to make a point if their point isn't the biggest and sharpest point that ever stabbed and argument.


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Ed Reppert wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:
The problem is, this can't happen when you're level 1. There's no CR minus two.
"Level 0 creatures are weaker than normal, counting as a “party level – 2” creature for a 1st-level party" -- Playtest Bestiary, page 21, last paragraph under "Choosing Creatures".

If by "weaker than normal," you mean "have the same to-hit, AC, and have higher saves and skills than an 18 Strength Fighter," then sure, I suppose that entry in the Beastiary is correct. Literally the only drawback a Level 0 Monster has compared to a Level 1 PC is having only starting hit dice + Con Modifier in HP. But when you throw a 12 HP creature with some astronomical constitution (such as a baby dragon, perhaps?), that weakness goes away quite quickly.

Of course, I'm of the opinion that creatures who are supposed to be lower level than you should be weaker than you overall, and not be a glass cannon, but apparently HP is the measuring point of CR, and not any other attribute or feature that matters a whole lot more.

Paizo Employee Designer

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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Ed Reppert wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:
The problem is, this can't happen when you're level 1. There's no CR minus two.
"Level 0 creatures are weaker than normal, counting as a “party level – 2” creature for a 1st-level party" -- Playtest Bestiary, page 21, last paragraph under "Choosing Creatures".
If by "weaker than normal," you mean "have the same to-hit, AC, and have higher saves and skills than an 18 Strength Fighter," then sure, I suppose that entry in the Beastiary is correct.

I'm curious, which level 0 monster is hitting same AC and better saves and skills than a fighter? As I've mentioned in other threads, level 0s do have intentionally increased accuracy and very low damage, but the other stats shouldn't be lining up like that, and if that's what you're seeing, the specific monster you're looking at might have problems. I opened up to the giant rat, and I'm seeing 13 AC, Fort +3, Ref +3, Will +1 (skills of Athletics +2 (+5 Climb or Swim), Acrobatics and Stealth +4).

To be low enough to tie those defensive values, the 18 Strength fighter would need to have 10 Wisdom, 12 Dex and Con, and be wearing only leather or padded armor (14 Dex and no armor would hit the AC but would give +4 Ref; both of these are lower than a fighter with those Dex scores would usually opt to have). To be worse on saves would be even tougher. I guess the fighter probably has 16 Cha or Int to be that low in the other stats. He has +5 Athletics if trained, and then if he has 16 Cha, I guess he's trained in Intimidation, Diplomacy, Deception, and so on with a +4 for each.


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Mark Seifter wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Ed Reppert wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:
The problem is, this can't happen when you're level 1. There's no CR minus two.
"Level 0 creatures are weaker than normal, counting as a “party level – 2” creature for a 1st-level party" -- Playtest Bestiary, page 21, last paragraph under "Choosing Creatures".
If by "weaker than normal," you mean "have the same to-hit, AC, and have higher saves and skills than an 18 Strength Fighter," then sure, I suppose that entry in the Beastiary is correct.

I'm curious, which level 0 monster is hitting same AC and better saves and skills than a fighter? As I've mentioned in other threads, level 0s do have intentionally increased accuracy and very low damage, but the other stats shouldn't be lining up like that, and if that's what you're seeing, the specific monster you're looking at might have problems. I opened up to the giant rat, and I'm seeing 13 AC, Fort +3, Ref +3, Will +1 (skills of Athletics +2 (+5 Climb or Swim), Acrobatics and Stealth +4).

To be low enough to tie those defensive values, the 18 Strength fighter would need to have 10 Wisdom, 12 Dex and Con, and be wearing only leather or padded armor (14 Dex and no armor would hit the AC but would give +4 Ref; both of these are lower than a fighter with those Dex scores would usually opt to have). To be worse on saves would be even tougher. I guess the fighter probably has 16 Cha or Int to be that low in the other stats. He has +5 Athletics if trained, and then if he has 16 Cha, I guess he's trained in Intimidation, Diplomacy, Deception, and so on with a +4 for each.

Giving them weapons with the deadly and lethal traits is not low damage. Especially when combined with the exaggerated attack bonus.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Ed Reppert wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:
The problem is, this can't happen when you're level 1. There's no CR minus two.
"Level 0 creatures are weaker than normal, counting as a “party level – 2” creature for a 1st-level party" -- Playtest Bestiary, page 21, last paragraph under "Choosing Creatures".

If by "weaker than normal," you mean "have the same to-hit, AC, and have higher saves and skills than an 18 Strength Fighter," then sure, I suppose that entry in the Beastiary is correct. Literally the only drawback a Level 0 Monster has compared to a Level 1 PC is having only starting hit dice + Con Modifier in HP. But when you throw a 12 HP creature with some astronomical constitution (such as a baby dragon, perhaps?), that weakness goes away quite quickly.

Of course, I'm of the opinion that creatures who are supposed to be lower level than you should be weaker than you overall, and not be a glass cannon, but apparently HP is the measuring point of CR, and not any other attribute or feature that matters a whole lot more.

Shoot the messenger, why don't you? I didn't mean anything by "weaker than normal". I just quoted the book. And I was responding to "there's no CR minus two" for a first level party. There is, as the quote shows.


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Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

The level 0 critter in the first adventure in Doomsday Dawn is a sewer ooze. I doubt he has any (other than natural) weapons, much less any with deadly and lethal traits.

Just checked. Nope, not deadly, and not lethal.

Probably pretty dangerous for a part of Leroy Jenkins clones, but we don't have that do we? Or do we?


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There are also Goblin Warriors, which have Deadly on their shortbows:

Spoiler:
Perception +1
Acrobatics +3
Athletics +3
Stealth +5

STR +0
DEX +3
CON +0
INT +0
WIS -1
CHA +1

AC 14
TAC 13
HP 6
Fort +1
Ref +4
Will +0

Melee: dogslicer +6 (agile, backstabber) Damage 1d6 slashing
Ranged: shortbow +6 (deadly 1d10), Damage 1d6 piercing

Silver Crusade

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Goblin warriors, firing from the darkness with their short bows, can wreak havoc with good rolls for their initial volley (especially if they focus-fire).


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Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

But according to the encounter they are supposed to charge. Not fire their bows, not focus fire, etc. If anything those bows are there to give the PCs ranged weapons after they kill the goblins (or loot to sell in the town).


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NielsenE wrote:
But according to the encounter they are supposed to charge. Not fire their bows, not focus fire, etc. If anything those bows are there to give the PCs ranged weapons after they kill the goblins (or loot to sell in the town).

That's true for room A2. It is not true for Room A7.

Edited to add: And it's not really true for A2, either.

A2. Mudchewer Central wrote:
Once they notice the PCs, though, they abandon their task and race forward to attack, howling and hooting.

This line does not dictate their choice of weapons, though "charge in to melee" is a reasonable interpretation.


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thorin001 wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Ed Reppert wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:
The problem is, this can't happen when you're level 1. There's no CR minus two.
"Level 0 creatures are weaker than normal, counting as a “party level – 2” creature for a 1st-level party" -- Playtest Bestiary, page 21, last paragraph under "Choosing Creatures".
If by "weaker than normal," you mean "have the same to-hit, AC, and have higher saves and skills than an 18 Strength Fighter," then sure, I suppose that entry in the Beastiary is correct.

I'm curious, which level 0 monster is hitting same AC and better saves and skills than a fighter? As I've mentioned in other threads, level 0s do have intentionally increased accuracy and very low damage, but the other stats shouldn't be lining up like that, and if that's what you're seeing, the specific monster you're looking at might have problems. I opened up to the giant rat, and I'm seeing 13 AC, Fort +3, Ref +3, Will +1 (skills of Athletics +2 (+5 Climb or Swim), Acrobatics and Stealth +4).

To be low enough to tie those defensive values, the 18 Strength fighter would need to have 10 Wisdom, 12 Dex and Con, and be wearing only leather or padded armor (14 Dex and no armor would hit the AC but would give +4 Ref; both of these are lower than a fighter with those Dex scores would usually opt to have). To be worse on saves would be even tougher. I guess the fighter probably has 16 Cha or Int to be that low in the other stats. He has +5 Athletics if trained, and then if he has 16 Cha, I guess he's trained in Intimidation, Diplomacy, Deception, and so on with a +4 for each.

Giving them weapons with the deadly and lethal traits is not low damage. Especially when combined with the exaggerated attack bonus.

Didn't we see this in PF1?

Okay I don't have like Hard Numbers for it but I recall numerous stories of DM/GMs sending bandits/orcs at a level 1 party and some of them have x3 crit weapons. Which on a lucky roll, seems to instantly end a PC.

With Crit easier to hit well...,


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Mark Seifter wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Ed Reppert wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:
The problem is, this can't happen when you're level 1. There's no CR minus two.
"Level 0 creatures are weaker than normal, counting as a “party level – 2” creature for a 1st-level party" -- Playtest Bestiary, page 21, last paragraph under "Choosing Creatures".
If by "weaker than normal," you mean "have the same to-hit, AC, and have higher saves and skills than an 18 Strength Fighter," then sure, I suppose that entry in the Beastiary is correct.

I'm curious, which level 0 monster is hitting same AC and better saves and skills than a fighter? As I've mentioned in other threads, level 0s do have intentionally increased accuracy and very low damage, but the other stats shouldn't be lining up like that, and if that's what you're seeing, the specific monster you're looking at might have problems. I opened up to the giant rat, and I'm seeing 13 AC, Fort +3, Ref +3, Will +1 (skills of Athletics +2 (+5 Climb or Swim), Acrobatics and Stealth +4).

To be low enough to tie those defensive values, the 18 Strength fighter would need to have 10 Wisdom, 12 Dex and Con, and be wearing only leather or padded armor (14 Dex and no armor would hit the AC but would give +4 Ref; both of these are lower than a fighter with those Dex scores would usually opt to have). To be worse on saves would be even tougher. I guess the fighter probably has 16 Cha or Int to be that low in the other stats. He has +5 Athletics if trained, and then if he has 16 Cha, I guess he's trained in Intimidation, Diplomacy, Deception, and so on with a +4 for each.

In our Lost Star playtest, our Dwarf Fighter (who shored up his Resonance for whatever reason) only had 16 Strength, 12 Charisma, 14 Constitution, 12 Dexterity, 10 Intelligence, and 12 Wisdom. He had 21 HP and wielded a Maul (no shield). It's not optimal, but it should still be a playable character by most standards in comparison to PF1, especially since just by using that weapon alone he trivialized at least two encounters (though he still died at the end through sheer bad rolling streaks). This puts him at +5 to-hit (less than every creature imaginable), 14 AC/12 TAC (same as fighting Goblins, since he spent money on having multiple weapons), had skills ranging from -1 to +4 (which is comparable to several level 0 creatures), and has 4 Fortitude, 2 Will, and 2 Reflex. While he has a better array of saves, at least one of those saving throws (usually his best one) will be equivalent to an enemy's best saving throw, and a creature's secondary saving throw is usually equivalent to a Fighter's secondary saving throw; it's usually only the tertiary saving throw where PCs shine, but the odds of that making the difference in the early levels is few and far between (unless it's Will or Reflex; almost nothing is Fortitude-based, which is what the Fighter specializes in, making them more crippled in comparison).

And if I wanted to play a Fighter that wanted to be more smart and/or endearing to others? I'd have to tank my secondary/tertiary stats, which means in other aspects I should be passable in, I flunk horribly (whereas Monsters have flat numbers to their attributes, half of which are simply made up or just plain don't make sense, both mechanically and flavorfully), just to make a more fleshed-out character. Conversely, if I wanted to make a character with flaws, all I'm doing is simply making my character a liability, or playing the game on Hard Mode (as if we aren't doing that already?) just to play the game on Hard Mode. This isn't some 90's Konami video game that required you to play the hardest mode to get the most relevant ending, either, so you don't get anything out of it.

I would seriously consider adding in a CR 1/2 for some of those "tougher" creatures (where they may actually deserve a +6 to hit), and make CR 0 actually be CR 0, instead of "CR 1-1/2: Glass Cannon Edition" like they are now. Making a second subdivision of CR 0 shouldn't be that difficult to do or explain to players, and it helps balance things better around Level 1, which is generally where rocket tag actually starts. [Random Great Axe/Scythe Critical goes here.]


Quote:
And if I wanted to play a Fighter that wanted to be more smart and/or endearing to others?

Play a Bard or Paladin that takes the Fighter Archetype at level 2?

More constructively, just take training in the skills you want to be good at. The difference for a Society check between an INT 10 Fighter and an INT 18 Wizard is +4 (or 20%) if they're both trained in it. Failing 20% more often than Wizards at skill checks seems like less of a penalty than decreasing your Initiative, HP, or saving throws by 1. You don't gain much for maxxing out INT or CHA by itself, unless you're also getting class features out of it.


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Ed Reppert wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Ed Reppert wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:
The problem is, this can't happen when you're level 1. There's no CR minus two.
"Level 0 creatures are weaker than normal, counting as a “party level – 2” creature for a 1st-level party" -- Playtest Bestiary, page 21, last paragraph under "Choosing Creatures".

If by "weaker than normal," you mean "have the same to-hit, AC, and have higher saves and skills than an 18 Strength Fighter," then sure, I suppose that entry in the Beastiary is correct. Literally the only drawback a Level 0 Monster has compared to a Level 1 PC is having only starting hit dice + Con Modifier in HP. But when you throw a 12 HP creature with some astronomical constitution (such as a baby dragon, perhaps?), that weakness goes away quite quickly.

Of course, I'm of the opinion that creatures who are supposed to be lower level than you should be weaker than you overall, and not be a glass cannon, but apparently HP is the measuring point of CR, and not any other attribute or feature that matters a whole lot more.

Shoot the messenger, why don't you? I didn't mean anything by "weaker than normal". I just quoted the book. And I was responding to "there's no CR minus two" for a first level party. There is, as the quote shows.

When the message is misleading and outright false, I have every right to shoot both the message, and the person (figuratively, of course) who attempted to use said message as a genuine means of argument, because it's an extremely ridiculous method of debate.

This is like me saying that, because something says the earth is flat, this means the earth is actually flat. It's not. Same concept here; because something says Level 0 creatures are equivalent to PL - 2, doesn't mean that Level 0 creatures are actually on the same level as PL - 2, meaning any text that tries to tell you it is, is flat-out incorrect, and as such should be labeled that way.


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EberronHoward wrote:
Quote:
And if I wanted to play a Fighter that wanted to be more smart and/or endearing to others?

Play a Bard or Paladin that takes the Fighter Archetype at level 2?

More constructively, just take training in the skills you want to be good at. The difference for a Society check between an INT 10 Fighter and an INT 18 Wizard is +4 (or 20%) if they're both trained in it. Failing 20% more often than Wizards at skill checks seems like less of a penalty than decreasing your Initiative, HP, or saving throws by 1. You don't gain much for maxxing out INT or CHA by itself, unless you're also getting class features out of it.

Not the same thing, nor is it comparable. I also wonder how this option makes me "more smart." I suppose you could do the same for Wizard or Alchemist, but what if I don't want someone who can cast spells primarily, or brew potions? Conversely, what if I didn't want him to revere some sort of "muse," or adhere to some strict code of conduct or deity worship? What if I just wanted a "leader"-type fighter who excels in tactical decisions and rallying the people, building himself up to be a future king (because he wants to make a "positive' difference in the world), having the attributes and other character choices backing up and leading to that point in his story?

I'll tell you what happens when I build characters like that in PF1; they suck nuts. They put the largest of squirrels to shame in that regard. And I can safely say that design aspect has not really changed in PF2, because building a Fighter, even with just 14 Intelligence and Charisma, is extremely crippling to his overall success, and he gains nothing out of it except what, background/flavor justification, the ability to use a few more magic items, a couple more trained skills, and to be slightly better at skills possessing the relevant modifier? (Oh, and gaining a language to speak, but let's be realistic here, that's just a waste of design space for how little impact that really has.)

On top of that, considering how extremely OP the Fighter multiclass is, I'm absolutely surprised they haven't nerfed it to "You increase the amount of proficiencies you have in weapons and armor by one step (from simple, to martial, to a single exotic of your choice for weapons, and from light, to medium, to heavy for armor" yet. It's seriously beyond broken.


I'm with you on the Fighter Archetype. They could switch Basic Maneuver with Full Armour Proficiency (Fighter Dedication gets martial weapon prof & a level 1-2 Fighter feat) and still be less powerful.

And I'd have no problem with PF2 getting a "Warlord" class in the Core Rulebook, but other people may feel differently. ;)


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NielsenE wrote:
But according to the encounter they are supposed to charge.

Rush forward isn't the equivalent of 'charge'. If they MEANT charge, it was VERY easy to state that: Just replace rush forward with charge into melee. Or remove the shortbows from the monsters. If melee was a requirement of the encounter, it would be helpful to be explicit with that fact.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:

When the message is misleading and outright false, I have every right to shoot both the message, and the person (figuratively, of course) who attempted to use said message as a genuine means of argument, because it's an extremely ridiculous method of debate.

This is like me saying that, because something says the earth is flat, this means the earth is actually flat. It's not. Same concept here; because something says Level 0 creatures are equivalent to PL - 2, doesn't mean that Level 0 creatures are actually on the same level as PL - 2, meaning any text that tries to tell you it is, is flat-out incorrect, and as such should be labeled that way.

Take it up with the devs, then.

Paizo Employee Designer

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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Ed Reppert wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:
The problem is, this can't happen when you're level 1. There's no CR minus two.
"Level 0 creatures are weaker than normal, counting as a “party level – 2” creature for a 1st-level party" -- Playtest Bestiary, page 21, last paragraph under "Choosing Creatures".
If by "weaker than normal," you mean "have the same to-hit, AC, and have higher saves and skills than an 18 Strength Fighter," then sure, I suppose that entry in the Beastiary is correct.

I'm curious, which level 0 monster is hitting same AC and better saves and skills than a fighter? As I've mentioned in other threads, level 0s do have intentionally increased accuracy and very low damage, but the other stats shouldn't be lining up like that, and if that's what you're seeing, the specific monster you're looking at might have problems. I opened up to the giant rat, and I'm seeing 13 AC, Fort +3, Ref +3, Will +1 (skills of Athletics +2 (+5 Climb or Swim), Acrobatics and Stealth +4).

To be low enough to tie those defensive values, the 18 Strength fighter would need to have 10 Wisdom, 12 Dex and Con, and be wearing only leather or padded armor (14 Dex and no armor would hit the AC but would give +4 Ref; both of these are lower than a fighter with those Dex scores would usually opt to have). To be worse on saves would be even tougher. I guess the fighter probably has 16 Cha or Int to be that low in the other stats. He has +5 Athletics if trained, and then if he has 16 Cha, I guess he's trained in Intimidation, Diplomacy, Deception, and so on with a +4 for each.

In our Lost Star playtest, our Dwarf Fighter (who shored up his Resonance for whatever reason) only had 16 Strength, 12 Charisma, 14 Constitution, 12 Dexterity, 10 Intelligence, and 12 Wisdom. He had 21 HP and wielded a Maul (no shield). It's not optimal, but it should still be a playable character by most standards in comparison to PF1, especially...

There's a few other numbers things in there that seem a bit off (for example the HP seems like it should be one higher), but only one that is probably important enough to mention directly to make sure your fighter can fix it when you play Midnight Mirror if he's going to bring back that character: The stats are missing a +2 somewhere, so the dwarf gets a free extra stat boost.

I don't want to give big spoilers for Lost Star here, but having checked the survey results, I wouldn't discount the danger of failed Fortitude saves. When Logan ran for the design team and Cosmo, our group actually didn't encounter the things where it would matter by circumstance, but a lot of other groups did and had quite a scare.


PCScipio wrote:
Goblin warriors, firing from the darkness with their short bows, can wreak havoc with good rolls for their initial volley (especially if they focus-fire).

Why are the players charging into an unlit space that they know for a fact has been colonized by creatures with darkvision that like to fight dirty in such a way that allows them to fire at them from darkness? That's what sneaky scout-type characters are *for*.

I mean yes, I admit that's a deadly situation, and not particularly newbie-friendly, but it also sounds like the heroes were being pretty reckless in that situation. Your characters know they're weak enough that goblins can be an actual threat, so it's not like it's metagaming to move forward with caution when chasing down a fleeing horde of goblins. You wouldn't chase a panther into its lair in real life without keeping your back to the wall and preparing for to be attacked by something that wants to and is capable of killing you, would you?

Personally, in our group the goblin player suggested--and the other players agree--that she scout ahead before the character carrying the torch went to avoid being seen by any potential threats. Even when she wrongly assumed the goblins would respond to her attempts to parlay, the fact that the party was coming from positions that it was hard for the goblins to fire from made the whole thing a lot more survivable. And that's not the only option for reducing the danger level of that fight, it's just *one* option.

It sounds like maybe the difficulty level has indeed increased a bit, but nothing I've heard suggests the situations are unrealistically dangerous or dangerous to a degree that reduces the level of fun to be had in the game. It just sounds like some people are assuming they're as superhumanly tough as they were in First Edition and that's not the case any longer--and it means reckless tactics actually get you killed sometimes. Even then, I've seen very few descriptions of people suffering TPKs that they both blame on the system and that, when you hear the whole story of what happened in that battle, don't show the frustration to largely be sour grapes on the part of some people who made assumptions they shouldn't have (mostly seeming to be the sorts of assumptions you would make from playing the game like 1st edition, or like D&D 5th edition) and dislike that they faced major consequences for those bad assumptions.

Also short of TPKs, it's still pretty hard to kill PCs without the GM going out of their way to be cruel or going into a fight with a creature that characters would have already heard stories about to make them know how much danger they're in and know to be prepared for--like basilisks or medusas or something.

Silver Crusade

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arcaneArtisan wrote:
That's what sneaky scout-type characters are *for*.

If you don't have darkvision, you need light to see. Stealth is not really possible if you're carrying a lit lantern.


PCScipio wrote:
arcaneArtisan wrote:
That's what sneaky scout-type characters are *for*.
If you don't have darkvision, you need light to see. Stealth is not really possible if you're carrying a lit lantern.

Which is why I mentioned that was only *one* option. It is an especially good option compared to, say, casting Light on a rock and throwing the rock into the room up ahead, but other options exist for people who set out with a mind to take precautions and solve the obstacles in front of them rather than run into a dungeon like they're expected to easily and safely murder everything that moves inside it.


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I was playing with Update 1.1, and I admit I did not TPK. But I nearly killed the Figter twice (he survived solely thanks to the dying rules 1.1) and I badly played my monsters (they were always after the damage dealers in initiative, most of the time the second last to play, and they were stationnary and just attacked whoever came to contact with them. Goblins tried to attack with melee attacks and placed themselves so that the party would easily flank them). I mainly targeted the Fighter and the Tank Cleric because I made a habit of killing the most dangerous adversary first and limiting my players' chances to Attack of Opportunity in PF1, where I should have not, since only one class has the AoO now. If I look at the damages I made, I would have one-shot the Sorcerer, the Alchemist or the Monk on turn 1 on Drakus's fight.

Edit : For record, the Ooze is level 1, not level 0.


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arcaneArtisan wrote:
That's what sneaky scout-type characters are *for*.

There is no such thing as a sneaky scout in PF2, at least not at low levels. And even at high levels, your best sneaky scout is probably the cleric or the druid.

The best scouts are the cleric and the druid because Perception is locked to Wisdom, all forms of detection from creatures to traps are locked to Perception, and cleric and rogue have Wisdom as key abilities.

The best sneaks are the rogue and ranger, since Stealth is locked to Dex, and rogue and ranger have Dex as key abilities. But, their Perception will never be better than the cleric's or the druid's, and to get it equal they have to invest their ability boosts in Dex to get a 16. I posit that high-wisdom rangers and rogues are not typical builds.

You can, later in the game, get a sneakier cleric or druid (or at least, you can now that Signature Skills are gone), but your rogue and ranger will never be as good at Perception because you can't invest in it except by raising your Wisdom. Similarly, your cleric and druid will never be as good as the ranger or rogue at Stealth because once you are trained in a skill all advancement is fixed, and the only way to improve it from that point forward is to raise their Dex.

And based on how this game is calculating its DC's, you'd be foolish to put those boosts anywhere other than your key ability (the game is already on "hard mode").

This is downright wonky.

Quote:
I mean yes, I admit that's a deadly situation, and not particularly newbie-friendly, but it also sounds like the heroes were being pretty reckless in that situation.

Is there an echo in here? Sometimes the dice go wrong. When the game has margins this tight and they go wrong, you end up on the receiving end of the three-attack turn, or in the case of Lost Star, persistent poison damage. In Lost Star, A2 is not the problem: A1, A3, A7, and A10 are the problem.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

So far my group hasn't TPKd. One character died but that was actually because I missed a rule that the Manticore has to spend an action to stay hovering. Even though the Cleric died at the manticore the rest of the party still managed to complete the mission with only 3 characters left without any healer. I feel the difficulty is around where it should be. Perhaps slight decreases on some creatures, but overall I'm happy with it.


Mark Seifter wrote:
There's a few other numbers things in there that seem a bit off (for example the HP seems like it should be one higher), but only one that is probably important enough to mention directly to make sure your fighter can fix it when you play Midnight Mirror if he's going to bring back that character: The stats are missing a +2 somewhere, so the dwarf gets a free extra stat boost.

HP would be higher as you say, though not in a way that it matters. (He still died at the end of the adventure, and his HP being lower than Level 0s wasn't part of my claim.)

I think he may have had 14 Wisdom instead of 12 (and he could have had 18 Strength, but still doesn't mean much for comparison purposes), but I know that he had at least 16 Strength and 12 Charisma since it was a contentious point for our group wondering why he had the Charisma boost and why he didn't have 18 Strength (or a higher Dexterity, or a Shield, but that's beside the point). He was largely inoptimal, but I have a feeling that even if he was optimal, he still would have died.

Mark Seifter wrote:
I don't want to give big spoilers for Lost Star here, but having checked the survey results, I wouldn't discount the danger of failed Fortitude saves. When Logan ran for the design team and Cosmo, our group actually didn't encounter the things where it would matter by circumstance, but a lot of other groups did and had quite a scare.

That's the biggest thing there; every Fortitude Saving Throw in that adventure can be easily avoided if the players are smart enough and approach the relevant encounters the right way, and our group of adventurers were capable of doing that in that playtest. Honestly, if our group didn't encounter those things the way they did, I would agree that this adventure would have most likely resulted in an actual TPK. The only times Fortitude Saving Throws were required in our playthrough were when PCs got dropped, and by that point the Save DC was so high we still needed a miraculous roll (or Hero Points) to make it out, and the new dying rules haven't changed this. Every single one of our PCs (except I think the Alchemist) had to use Hero Points to stave off death and didn't have any Hero Points left at the end of the adventure; the Alchemist and the Sorcerer were the only ones left due to Pharasma's divine interference of making them both roll back-to-back 20s on their attacks, rolling very high on their damage rolls, and finishing off the final boss in an ironic twist of fate, but that was only after 3 of the 5 PCs got slaughtered one-by-one. While not an actual TPK, I can say that for the continuation of that adventure, we can't really expect to play that group again unless the GM allows new characters or deus ex machina's the other characters to technically not have died (we did screw up a couple of the dying rules, so maybe they could have survived if they played it correctly, but until we get to that sequel adventure, we'll have to wait and see).

In short, the way the continuity of that adventure went assumed no player deaths and no significant drawbacks to their result. When those are factored in, the processions seemed very awkward and difficult to build continuity off-of when such events occur; half the party was dead, and some of them were good friends of one another. I'm not certain that, of those that survived, they would have the heart to continue their "quest," and would perhaps instead pawn the responsibility onto someone else (meaning whole new characters altogether), becoming the quest giver instead of the questee.


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Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
arcaneArtisan wrote:
It sounds like maybe the difficulty level has indeed increased a bit, but nothing I've heard suggests the situations are unrealistically dangerous or dangerous to a degree that reduces the level of fun to be had in the game. It just sounds like some people are assuming they're as superhumanly tough as they were in First Edition and that's not the case any longer--and it means reckless tactics actually get you killed sometimes. Even then, I've seen very few descriptions of people suffering TPKs that they both blame on...

^^This. Exactly this. Pathfinder is a fantasy RPG, not a Superhero RPG.


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John Mechalas wrote:
So realistically, your best Perception modifier is typically going to be your Cleric and the rest of the party is probably averaging a +2. That means your party of four has a roughly 80% chance of succeeding based on the "at least one success" law of probability. That's still a 1 in 5 chance of failure.

Except this is not how exploration mode works. If every character is searching, only the character with the highest Per makes a roll - as per the rules p 331. In other words, it's not possible to get more than 50% chance to see the ooze - and it drops if the healer isn't Wis-based.

Spoiler:
I don't even know why Per isn't a skill anymore. In PF1, the group's overall Per was improved by every character investing in Per, and since it's very useful, everyone invested in Per; in PF2, only the character with the highest Per makes a roll - if you have 1 point less than another character, all your investment in Per is useless. This makes Per far less mandatory. They should change the init system and make Per a skill... Or remove this "only one character rolls Per" nonsense.

John Mechalas wrote:
A theme has emerged in the Playtest discussions on the forums: When there's a request that the designers just back off the difficulty or let players have some more freedom in power level, someone always turns up and says "Some players will never be satisfied unless their characters are OP and stomping on every ncounter". As if that's the only other option.

Actually...

Paizo is selling AP going from level 1 to ~16. In path 2, gaining 15 levels requires 375 level-appropriate fights. If there's a 1% chance of TPK every fight, in the end the PCs have 2.3% chance to win the AP.

We need to be OP and have a 0% chance of TPK in a level-appropriate fight. Or Paizo has to lighten xp and remove the need to farm. Or a whole AP should be level 1 to 4 instead of 16. What's certain is: "the game features 1% chance TPK each fight, a whole AP is level 1 to 16, and the characters need to win 25 level-appropriate fights each level" isn't a possible game-design; one of those 3 statements has to be removed.


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Ed Reppert wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:

It seems like the game might work better if you usually met groups of enemies about three levels below you. That way, you can feel competent with most of your actions, and as long as there's enough enemies you can still be challenged.

The problem is, this can't happen when you're level 1. There's no CR minus two.

"Level 0 creatures are weaker than normal, counting as a “party level – 2” creature for a 1st-level party" -- Playtest Bestiary, page 21, last paragraph under "Choosing Creatures".

Level 0 creatures are somehow two levels below Level 1 characters. Because 1-0 = 2 i guess? Matthew Downie is explicitly asking for creatures three level below the character. Ie for monster of level -2 (since 1-(-2)=3). Not for monsters of level 0 that are actually level -1.


John Mechalas wrote:
arcaneArtisan wrote:
That's what sneaky scout-type characters are *for*.

There is no such thing as a sneaky scout in PF2, at least not at low levels. And even at high levels, your best sneaky scout is probably the cleric or the druid.

The best scouts are the cleric and the druid because Perception is locked to Wisdom, all forms of detection from creatures to traps are locked to Perception, and cleric and rogue have Wisdom as key abilities.

The best sneaks are the rogue and ranger, since Stealth is locked to Dex, and rogue and ranger have Dex as key abilities. But, their Perception will never be better than the cleric's or the druid's, and to get it equal they have to invest their ability boosts in Dex to get a 16. I posit that high-wisdom rangers and rogues are not typical builds.

You can, later in the game, get a sneakier cleric or druid (or at least, you can now that Signature Skills are gone), but your rogue and ranger will never be as good at Perception because you can't invest in it except by raising your Wisdom. Similarly, your cleric and druid will never be as good as the ranger or rogue at Stealth because once you are trained in a skill all advancement is fixed, and the only way to improve it from that point forward is to raise their Dex.

Wouldn't someone with better perception proficiency progression be a better choice? Wis 16 expert and wis 18 trained are the same, but going from 18 to 20 takes 10 levels, whereas going from expert to master is 7 for fighters, rangers, and rogues with rogues get legendary at 13, rangers at 15.

A cleric/druid could keep close through buying alertness, but they aren't going to be the best. On top of that, fighter and rogue have some serious feat support for perception beyond the base roll.

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