Concept: choosing your proficiencies


General Discussion


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The playtest brings with a unified proficiency system that sees attacks, armour, skill, saving throws, and a few other things all follow the same mechanism. Setting aside the specific numbers, I think this is a good thing, as this single mechanism applied everywhere makes the game easier to learn and understand.

However, there's a divide at present between skills, where you allocate your proficiency ranks freely (particularly now that the limit of Signature Skills have gone away), and all the others that go up when your class says they do. Several of the classes have options that specifically allow you to add a proficiency rank to your choice of saving throw, or your choice of weapon type. They felt that allowing some freedom was a good idea.

I'd like to explore the option of allowing people to choose their proficiencies the same way as skills.

The way I imagine this working is that you'd get two pools of proficiency ranks to spend each level. One of these is for skills; the other is for other things. The second pool would be much smaller (maybe just 1/level?)

Classes, ancestries and backgrounds would still come with initial proficiencies. From level 1 onward, it would be up to the player which direction they take the character.

PRO

  • It simplifies the system, removing almost half the entries from class pages.
  • It empowers players to build a wider variety of characters. Instead of assuming all Barbarians get fortitude increase at the same rate, allow for hearty Barbarians and fragile Barbarians to both be valid.
  • Since classes would all get a proficiency increase at the same level, it's easy to tell all your players "Don't forget, you get a proficiency rank this level."

CON

  • The scale of a proficiency rank in each of the systems needs to be carefully balanced, so that a rank of heavy armour is similar scale to a rank of reflex.
  • There will need to be rules about what you can add to at each level, to prevent characters hitting master or legendary too early.
  • It potentially enables some nonsense builds, like the wizard who can't cast spells but is great at hitting things.
  • There are probably unanticipated side-effects.

What do people think? Would this achieve its idea? Are there good reasons Paizo didn't do this?

(Please do not derail this thread with discussions of the value of +1/level, or the +1 from each proficiency rank. That conversation is already happening in enough other places.)


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I've proposed this in my thread on Uncommon weapons.

Most of that post was about exotic and uncommon weapons, but I also touched on weapon proficiencies at the end. Basically, it's silly that if I want to learn to use a gun (which will probably be exotic), I have to learn all martial weapons first. And similarly, it's silly that if my sorcerer wants to use a rapier to pretend to be a bard, he has to learn all martial weapons.

My proposed system would be giving everyone trained proficiency with simple weapons, letting everyone except monks pick some number of weapon groups to be trained in (yes, even sorcerers), having the Weapon Proficiency feat let you pick a weapon group and advance it from untrained to trained or trained to expert, and tying critical specializations to having expert proficiency with a group.


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While I like the idea, there are many points apart from the big balance thing to consider:

- currently, the proficiency progression is one thing that's used to differentiate the classes. Fighter is the one with superb weapon prof, monk has good saves... With freestyle profs you loose a bit of flair for some classes

- you create proficiency taxes. Perception will again become a "skill" everyone wants to max out. For non-buff casters spell prof is a must...

- like you said, silly builds will become possible. That's a beginner-friendly vs. customizable problem


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masda_gib wrote:


- currently, the proficiency progression is one thing that's used to differentiate the classes. Fighter is the one with superb weapon prof, monk has good saves... With freestyle profs you loose a bit of flair for some classes

If the only thing a class offers is proficiency in some standard things, then they really need to rethink the class. Each class should have some special features beyond skills, proficiencies and hit points, otherwise it's just a really dull class to play.

And mostly that's okay. The Alchemist gets bombs, the Barbarian gets rage, the Bard gets compositions, the Paladin gets champion powers etc. The Fighter is an exception because they focus totally on martial ability, but they've always been a bit dull, and people who choose fighter like that. The Monk is the only one that's feeling weak in this system, and that can be addressed by making stances a core class feature rather than just feats.

And as I said, classes can still start with their own initial proficiencies, eg the Monk can start with better reflex saves, the Wizard with arcane spell proficiency etc. It's just up to the player how they focus as the character develops.


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Missed this thread. Thanks for posting it.

sadie wrote:
It simplifies the system, removing almost half the entries from class pages.

I hadn't thought about this benefit but I like it.

sadie wrote:
It empowers players to build a wider variety of characters. Instead of assuming all Barbarians get fortitude increase at the same rate, allow for hearty Barbarians and fragile Barbarians to both be valid.

I'm a huge fan of this. I like the image of the sickly Barbarian who still gets really mad and causes some trouble.

sadie wrote:
Since classes would all get a proficiency increase at the same level, it's easy to tell all your players "Don't forget, you get a proficiency rank this level."

Indeed. Right now it's buried in feats but making it a stand alone system, like skill increases, would be a great simplification that adds depth. Also lets class feats focus on actions - interesting new things that the character can do - rather than just getting better at using a sword.

sadie wrote:
The scale of a proficiency rank in each of the systems needs to be carefully balanced, so that a rank of heavy armour is similar scale to a rank of reflex.

True. I think Paizo has done well at balancing the defensive proficiencies already...perhaps even overtuning them...but the GM or Adventure Path could really throw things off by focusing too much on one aspect. Balancing offensive vs defensive would be a challenging task.

sadie wrote:
There will need to be rules about what you can add to at each level, to prevent characters hitting master or legendary too early.

The framework is already there with skills. I think this could really work while being more intuitive to new players.

sadie wrote:
It potentially enables some nonsense builds, like the wizard who can't cast spells but is great at hitting things.

That seems like a PRO to me.

sadie wrote:
There are probably unanticipated side-effects.

Always are.


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This is definitely something I think needs to be considered. Since day 1 people have been asking why dex based fighters and paladins need to get heavy armor boosts.

I think proficiency feeds into the larger question of character combat style, and how I think you should be able to choose it regardless of class. It makes no sense to limit our imaginations so much just because in the past the base class had X, Y, and Z (even when it was almost always archetyped out for I, J, and K). As it stands 2e has no replacement for archetypes that traded out proficiencies for different thematic elements.

I argue Paizo should take a step back and really nail down what the concept of Class needs to cover, and what can be loosened up.

For example, HP in PF2e is analogous to BAB from PF1e, and represents a class's relative comfort in the thick of battle. Makes sense.

But proficiency? A fighter who was born with a rapier in their hand somehow must also be proficient with big hammers and clubs, and full plate armor? How necessary is that?

Now the big question is how Casters can fulfill the unarmored trope without feeling like they're arbitrarily punishing themselves. I argue magical forms of protection should gain an explicit proficiency type, perhaps as light armor or maybe a separate category like Magic Defenses.

This concept could be extended to Rays and Touch Attacks, so that offensive casters have to invest proficiency boosts into magical things, and don't get to just add on all sorts of martial toys willy nilly.


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Great idea. It has always bothered me that you can follow a proficiency chain to get to “Trained” in all weapons and armor no matter what class, but for my sorcerer I just wanted better in unarmored, my rogue better in light and my cleric better in medium and the current structure doesn’t let me do that.

I think if you want to throw daggers at all the victims of your stinking cloud for 20 levels as a wizard you should get better at doing that. It isnt really a trade off, it is just part of that wizard’s routine, and after researching for the day why can’t that character practice throwing daggers at nearby tree knots while the fighter cooks dinner around the campfire?

The only ones that will need strict balancing are saves and perception, but seeing at how weak the proficiency bonus is compared to ability bonus, level, and item bonuses , even perception might not be problematic.


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I remember discussing the purpose/role of Feats during Pathfinder First Edition's playtest and many of us liked the idea of Feats as FEATS...new actions that characters can make. Skill Feats are a big step in this direction and moving Proficiency out of feats would be another step. Currently, anyone can wear heavy armor, they just do it badly. It's not really a Feat to be less bad at wearing heavy armor.

So I'm all for Skill Increase being joined by Equipment Increase (Weapons/Spells and Armor) and Defense Increase (Perception/Saving Throws) after First Level.

WatersLethe wrote:
As it stands 2e has no replacement for archetypes that traded out proficiency for different thematic elements.

Good point. The old archetype system was messy but it allowed a lot of customization. This would give characters a much cleaner way to customize.

WatersLethe wrote:
But proficiency? A fighter who was born with a rapier in their hand somehow must also be proficient with big hammers and clubs, and full plate armor? How necessary is that?

I'm all for niche protection...but I don't think baseline profiency needs to be part of that. What's special about a Paladin? Is it the heavy armor or is it the divine powers? What special about a Wizard? Is it how high the saving throws are against their spells or is it the fact that they can cast arcane spells? What's special about Monk? Is it their aptitude at fisticuffs or their supernatural martial art abilities (okay - that one is borderline)?

Zamfield wrote:
I think if you want to throw daggers at all the victims of your stinking cloud for 20 levels as a wizard you should get better at doing that.

That's a great example.

Zamfield wrote:
The only ones that will need strict balancing are saves and perception, but seeing at how weak the proficiency bonus is compared to ability bonus, level, and item bonuses , even perception might not be problematic.

Agreed. The tight math actually makes this change feasible where as it would have been a bear to implement in Pathfinder First Edition.


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I love this idea, and if a class doesn't feel like it has enough going on with proficiency stripped out that really shows a serious problem in the class as is.

Math wise I'm worried about one issue with the armor proficiency and why it seems like the designers have avoided giving any sort of higher level light armor proficiency. Light armor would end up overshadowing heavy armor on defense making higher dexterity characters tankier than heavy armor characters. And while I love playing dex characters they should have other reasons to make them worth playing than that.

This is a bit of a problem with the tight math in general I think. Not enough room for interesting bonuses, but that's not something I should get into in this thread.


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Wolfism wrote:
Math wise I'm worried about one issue with the armor proficiency and why it seems like the designers have avoided giving any sort of higher level light armor proficiency. Light armor would end up overshadowing heavy armor on defense making higher dexterity characters tankier than heavy armor characters. And while I love playing dex characters they should have other reasons to make them worth playing than that.

Heavy Armor feels a bit overnerfed to me so, personally, I think it would make sense to buff it to compensate. Another point or two of AC on average would make a difference.


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WatersLethe wrote:


I think proficiency feeds into the larger question of character combat style, and how I think you should be able to choose it regardless of class. It makes no sense to limit our imaginations so much just because in the past the base class had X, Y, and Z (even when it was almost always archetyped out for I, J, and K). As it stands 2e has no replacement for archetypes that traded out proficiencies for different thematic elements.

I argue Paizo should take a step back and really nail down what the concept of Class needs to cover, and what can be loosened up.

That's an important point, this fills a design space that's currently unsatisfied.

Ever since reading how the new archetypes work, I've been conflicted. I like how any archetype can be combined with any class, so your Thief concept can be a Rogue Thief, a Druid Thief, a Wizard Thief or even a Paladin Thief. That's giving players more option to design unique characters. However, since the new archetypes are only additions to the base, not modifications, you still get the exact same set of base abilities and proficiencies to build on.

Allowing proficiency ranks to be allocated more freely does a lot to alleviate that. Characters can be truly different.


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Note: for this concept to work, I think it's important not to include any feats that grant proficiency, whether that's general "+1 to any proficiency" or specific "Become master in reflex saves". It would allow people to bypass the balanced system, and inexorably tie the scale of proficiency to that of feats, making it harder to balance.


sadie wrote:
Note: for this concept to work, I think it's important not to include any feats that grant proficiency, whether that's general "+1 to any proficiency" or specific "Become master in reflex saves". It would allow people to bypass the balanced system, and inexorably tie the scale of proficiency to that of feats, making it harder to balance.

I'd agree in general. It might work with a first level Heritage or maybe Backgrounds granting some special starting proficiency, but after that it needs to be locked down.

Sovereign Court

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I particularly like this in the context of paladin heavy armor.

When you ask "what is a paladin", one of the answers you might get is "knight in shining armor". When you ask "what is an elven paladin like", however, you expect something light and elegant. Mithral chain shirts maybe.

Right now it seems to me that at levels 2-4 heavy armor looks powerful because not everyone can really hit max dex yet, but by level 5 that evens out a lot. On the other hand, heavy armor, even expert-level, has really punishing armor check penalty.

And frankly, the whole light/medium/heavy armor scale is quite boring. All heavier armor does is slide you along a Pareto front of Dex vs. Item bonuses, letting you take a break on one ability and compensating with money, loss of movement speed and penalties to skills. But wearing heavy armor doesn't actually let you do anything different that light armor doesn't let you do.

Well, paladins get really forced into it, with more heavy armor proficiency than light or medium, and their ability to auto-crit succesful Fort saves while wearing heavy armor. Yay. I have to wear this particular type of armor to get all my class features.


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I like this concept a whole heck of a lot. It elegantly puts a finger on something that had been bothering me for a while, but I wasn't sure what it was. ::tips cap::


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The Once and Future Kai wrote:
sadie wrote:
Note: for this concept to work, I think it's important not to include any feats that grant proficiency, whether that's general "+1 to any proficiency" or specific "Become master in reflex saves". It would allow people to bypass the balanced system, and inexorably tie the scale of proficiency to that of feats, making it harder to balance.
I'd agree in general. It might work with a first level Heritage or maybe Backgrounds granting some special starting proficiency, but after that it needs to be locked down.

Heritage feats are probably okay, because they're first level, which is different. Classes grant some initial proficiencies, and so do ancestries and backgrounds. But level 2 on, the choice is left up to the player. At least, that's how I see it working.

I see a heritage feat as being something of a bridge between a character's ancestry and background. "I was born an elf, and in the 40 years I spent growing up as an elf, this is what I learned."


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Looking through the classes as written and how many proficiency points they get from levels 2 to 20, in order to get a feel for roughly how many proficiency ranks there would need to be. This excludes initial proficiencies, and skills.

Alchemists: 0. But they get upgrades to their bombs and elixirs, which could be reskinned as proficiency.

Barbarians: 6. Almost all of those are at level 13.

Bards: 3. All in spellcasting.

Clerics: 3. All in spellcasting. Deities grant weapon proficiency.

Druids: 3. All in spellcasting. Druid orders grant skill training. Forbidden from using metal armour etc.

Fighters: 15. Depending exactly how you count weapon groups.

Monks: 6. They get a choice of which saving throw to invest in, uniquely.

Paladins: 17. Again, depends how you count weapon groups.

Rangers: 10. Note the text: "If you’re a master in Perception, you gain..." which suggests they wrote it when Perception was still a skill. As currently written, the class dictates that Rangers are master in Perception at that level.

Rogues: 6. Rogues get double the skill ranks, of course.

Sorcerers: 3. All in spellcasting.

Wizards: 3. All in spellcasting.

There's a marked difference between the martials and the spellcasters, and that's fine. Spellcasters dedicate themselves to spellcasting, while martials dedicate themselves to weapons. I'd probably increase the number slightly though, to allow spellcasters to become better at a chosen saving throw, perception or other ability, without utterly ruining their ability to cast spells.

All the martial classes have a complication of having abilities that say eg "and expert in all other simple and martial weapons", which technically counts as a whole big pile of proficiencies, except that no single character is going to use twelve different weapons. The character sheet is utterly useless in keeping track of all of these. I think these "all weapons" increases should be eliminated, because it doesn't make a lot of sense that repeated sword fighting makes you better at shooting with a bow or poking with a spear; but I guess that's always been the dilemma of XP.


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With those differences in mind, I no longer think you could give all classes an equal number of ranks to spend. So that's actually one item to remove from the PRO list at the top.

Sovereign Court

I'm not a fan of taking away things like general martial weapon proficiency. Sure, you might plan to use one weapon as your favorite. But I think part of the fun in the game is finding some oddball weapon that happens to be better in the current situation; maybe I like my longsword but that axe does really well against the boss' DR.

If people had to "pay" for it, you'd see a whole let less general proficiency and a lot of narrow specialization on what you know you need. You get less flexible characters because you reward that.


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I always liked Weapon Group based proficiency system from Unearthed Arcana; which gave proficiency in sets of thematically related weapons (and a creative GM could always write custom cultural weapon groups).

Overall I like the idea of more permutation and customization in initial proficiencies, but I think instead of being freeform, there should be set and free proficiencies granted at various steps. Thus ancesteies, backgrounds, and classes can have consistent benefits, but also some room for customization.

So all elves might naturally be Trained in Reflexes (which might either rise to expert, or become a free adventuring-proficiency if your background or character class also grants training in Reflexes. Adventuring proficiencies would be ranks in things like Armor and Weapon groups, Spellcraft, Saving Throws, and Perception (everything else is a Background Proficiency; despite sometimes being useful for adventuring).


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Ascalaphus wrote:

I'm not a fan of taking away things like general martial weapon proficiency. Sure, you might plan to use one weapon as your favorite. But I think part of the fun in the game is finding some oddball weapon that happens to be better in the current situation; maybe I like my longsword but that axe does really well against the boss' DR.

If people had to "pay" for it, you'd see a whole let less general proficiency and a lot of narrow specialization on what you know you need. You get less flexible characters because you reward that.

It's true that the freedom to do off-the-wall things is one of the key of TTRPGs, so we want to avoid anything that discourages that. At the same time, you don't need to be very proficient in a weapon to pick it up, so "trained in all simple and martial weapons" feels more plausible than "master in all simple and martial weapons".

Not sure how best to slice that.

Sovereign Court

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sadie wrote:
Ascalaphus wrote:

I'm not a fan of taking away things like general martial weapon proficiency. Sure, you might plan to use one weapon as your favorite. But I think part of the fun in the game is finding some oddball weapon that happens to be better in the current situation; maybe I like my longsword but that axe does really well against the boss' DR.

If people had to "pay" for it, you'd see a whole let less general proficiency and a lot of narrow specialization on what you know you need. You get less flexible characters because you reward that.

It's true that the freedom to do off-the-wall things is one of the key of TTRPGs, so we want to avoid anything that discourages that. At the same time, you don't need to be very proficient in a weapon to pick it up, so "trained in all simple and martial weapons" feels more plausible than "master in all simple and martial weapons".

Not sure how best to slice that.

I think it's possible to draw a boundary somewhere in between. Like giving all fighters all martial weapon basic training, but giving some choice in how many categories you go deep in.

It reminds be a bit of a PF1 rules discussion where a 2H fighter tried to retrain away his heavy armor and shield proficiency for more bonus feats.

The risk is that you make it too profitable to sell off proficiencies you don't have an immediate plan for, which creates a disparity between one-trick builds and people who do want to play the more diverse fighter.

Or for example paladins; right now they get abilities that only work in heavy armor. If those abilities also worked with light or medium armor, then it'd be tempting to just go medium and try to cash in your heavy armor proficiency. Paladins who do stick with heavy armor would basically be the "bad builds". (I think heavy armor is really unattractive right now, Hide and Chain Mail hit the sweet spot of utilizing all of a realistic Dexterity score without too much ACP or speed reduction. without the extra inducements paladins get to heavy armor, I doubt you'd see it used much.)


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It's hard to make heavy armour an attractive option while also keeping it relatively believable, because in the real world heavy armour is kind of dumb. Unless you're on an actual battlefield, which adventurers generally aren't, heavy armour just doesn't make a lot of sense.

Fantasy has a lot of armour that's not very historical or realistic, though, and suggests that the solution is to allow more magical effects to be added to heavy armour.

Still, that's out of scope :)


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Classes could gain "free" skill boosts, within reason, and still get increased proficiency as the original poster describes. For example, Rogues could get extra Skill Proficiencies, Fighters could get a single Weapon Group to scale up for free, and Paladins a single Armor Group.

All of that while opening up proficiency improvements is still possible, and opening up proficiency improvements (with similar level capping as Skill Proficiencies have now) suddenly makes this a game I'm much more interested in playing, because if my Wizard wants to become a master of the Longsword, they can.

I think there are some underlying issues here ("why would I take acrobatics when I can become better at a weapon!?"), but the general notion of opening these up does sound appealing to me.


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Quote:
"why would I take acrobatics when I can become better at a weapon!?"

That's why I figured that proficiency ranks would be separate from the skill ranks. They're really operating on a different scale, and the balance between skills and other proficiencies is tied to class identity.

You also need some level gating, so a fighter can't become a legendary swordsman at level 4 by just putting every point they have in the same place.


I would give all classes trained status with ALL weapons and armor.

Then just give different classes different pace of increasing it to legendary, if any.

Wizard would probably not move from trained weapons/armor in 20 levels.

Maybe expert in no armor and expert in staff weapons.

Armor with armor-check-penalty and speed reductions(that "tanky" classes should be able to reduce in some early to mid levels) should be enough to deter many rogues and wizards clanking around in plate.

Also if we only have "martial power level" of weapons and we up the damage by little we can get rid of that horrid d4 excuse for a die.

start with d6 for lowest damage weapon and end with 2d8 for greataxe/greatsword.


Ascalaphus wrote:
And frankly, the whole light/medium/heavy armor scale is quite boring. All heavier armor does is slide you along a Pareto front of Dex vs. Item bonuses, letting you take a break on one ability and compensating with money, loss of movement speed and penalties to skills. But wearing heavy armor doesn't actually let you do anything different that light armor doesn't let you do.

On that note - I know it's problematic but I think to implement proficiency by choice it's helpful to reclassify equipment proficiency.

WEAPONS
--o Replace Martial with Weapon Groups. Fighter starts trained in all Weapon Groups/Other classes have to select a number of Weapon Groups.
--o Keep Simple as it's own Weapon Group.
--o Each Exotic would be a Weapon Groups with only one weapon in it.

I think this works better with an independent proficiency system. A Rogue could sacrifice a lot to get up to Master weapon proficiency...but only for one Weapon Group.

Like others - I don't like Light Armor proficiency "building" up to Medium Armor and then that "building" up to Heavy Armor. I'd rather that we have five Armor Groups: Simple Armor, Light Armor, Medium Armor, Heavy Armor, and Exotic Armor.

ARMOR
Unarmored - Unarmored, Cloth, etc.
Light Armor - Leather, Chain Shirt, etc.
Medium Armor - Chainmail, Breastplate, etc.
Heavy Armor - Platemail, etc.
Exotic Armor - Weapon Groups with one special type of Armor.

Ascalaphus wrote:
Well, paladins get really forced into it, with more heavy armor proficiency than light or medium, and their ability to auto-crit succesful Fort saves while wearing heavy armor. Yay. I have to wear this particular type of armor to get all my class features.

Alternatively - I'd prefer Heavy Armor gaining the ability like Shield Block that turns a Critical Strike into a normal Strike but results in the armor gaining a Dent. I think I'll start a separate thread on this.


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As I've been tinkering with this concept to incorporate it into the comprehensive tweaks I've been creating for PF2, this is how I've approached the weapon and armor proficiency increases with respect to initial proficiency:

I've basically left initial proficiency alone. This is the only place where something might give you all simple or martial or specific weapons for your proficiency. This is your starting position, and you get to your own individual starting position based on your choice of class, and then possibly modified by your ancestry and background choices.

For weapons, once you are applying your proficiency increases, you always apply the proficiency increase to a weapon group as a whole. So, through continued training, you've gotten better at, say, clubs. Your proficiency rank with all clubs increases. Any clubs you were already expert in become master, any you were trained in become expert, any you were untrained in become trained, and so on, whether the weapons are simple, martial or exotic. Past the point of initial proficiency the simple-martial-exotic distinction is basically meaningless. I then adjusted the Weapon Proficiency general feat so that it "standardizes" your proficiency within a weapon group, so it increases your proficiency with any weapon of a weapon group that isn't your highest proficiency with a weapon of that weapon group by 1 step, to a maximum of your highest proficiency with a weapon of that weapon group. So it generalizes your training instead of improving it vertically, because improving it is solely the province of the level-up proficiency increases.

Then, with armors, I intend to incorporate additional benefits for armor categories that unlock once you achieve higher proficiency in them, different benefits for unarmored vs light armor vs medium armor vs heavy armor. I haven't gotten around to creating those, yet. But I can say that for a class like the paladin or fighter, their class feats or abilities that have a prerequisite or provide bonuses for things like "master in heavy armor" instead have a prerequisite or provides that benefit for any armor category in which you have the requisite proficiency rank. So your bastion of defense is a bastion of defense regardless of what equipment choices you make - so an elven paladin in light armor for speed and stealth would be just as supported as a traditional heavy armor knight as an Iroran paladin that eschews armor altogether, without taking any more effort than a few wording tweaks.

I think this approach will greatly diversify characters as soon as they start getting their proficiency increases, while still providing a common and easy-to-learn starting point.


This would also open up the character customization bottleneck - freeing up class feats for other things while proficency advances independently.


I played around with proficiency assigning systems a lot. I do not think they are the answer.

I think we need something on top of proficiency. A way to 'Invest' in a fighting style, even if you already get Training in it. My suggestion is to give players 1 feat from a pool of level 1 Combat Style feats, such as Double Slice, or 2 of these for Fighters.

Some way to improve weapons flexibility and investment outside of the get-too-late, feel-too-little general feats and class seems like the right direciton, though.


Lyee wrote:
I played around with proficiency assigning systems a lot. I do not think they are the answer.

I don't think they resolve every problem but I do think they're the most intuitive thing to remove from Class Feats and that doing so would drastically open up character options in the system.

Instead of needing to take an archetype (which comes with heavy restrictions) to improve armor proficiency, just use a Defense Increase to boost it. This lets archetypes be focused on abilities rather than proficiency. What to play an armored wizard? It draws investment away from other defensive proficiencies (like saving throws) but is otherwise easily done.

Lyee wrote:
I think we need something on top of proficiency. A way to 'Invest' in a fighting style, even if you already get Training in it. My suggestion is to give players 1 feat from a pool of level 1 Combat Style feats, such as Double Slice, or 2 of these for Fighters.

I think this is a good suggestion. Something like this is definitely needed.

I'm more interested in non-traditional builds. Like the example provided earlier of a dagger focused Wizard who forgoes INT for DEX and uses spells for utility. The problem for this Wizard is that they'll need to take an archetype to improve at wielding daggers. Why not just let them make the choice of investing Offense Increase into weapon proficiency or spell casting proficiency?

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