Resonance Specifically At Low Levels


Magic Items

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I've been a bit disheartened listening to recent podcasts where Jason has been saying that we're really only getting to the relevance of resonance in the higher levels and it hasn't had much impact at low levels.

At my tables low level resonance was a HUGE deal. And the way the surveys asked questions didn't really seem to convey this well as they only cared when people crit-failed trying to keep using it but things like potions have a huge cost on just a fail.

To hear it referenced like it was in those podcasts leaves me very worried that Paizo's designers haven't really seen this impact. I sincerely hope they mean they haven't had a chance to see it with the issues it was designed to combat, which I do understand is very true (And if that's the intended meaning I apologize for misinterpreting/misrepresenting your position & eagerly await the fixes you come up with).

Are we alone here? Have other people's gaming experiences been that resonance has truly been un-impactful at level 1 and 4? (I'm not trying to propose we solve the problem here, just asking has it explicitly been a problem for others in actual games as opposed to theory)

More detailed breakdown of my experiences in spoiler:

Spoiler:
Level 1 (2 games of Doomsday Dawn, 1 GM 1 Player, and 1 GM of the PFS scenario): We frequently had more consumables than we had resonance & making decisions about sleeping the night based on inability to drink potions. Every single player was discussing their resonance totals. The biggest impact was the death of a character when he was poisoned and failed his resonance check for a healing potion that would've bought him enough time to likely live (He started with 0 resonance as a dwarf with 8 cha level 1, and not realizing how bad that was had bought 3 healing potions). He didn't die, but someone else did while the druid ran to heal him. It wasn't as big a deal in the PFS scenario, I believe mostly cause the party wasn't pushed as hard.

Level 4 (1 game Doomsday Dawn Player): It was also impactful on our level 4 game. My cleric was the only one impacted really, and that's cause I had a wand and a staff. I actually found it an interesting resource to balance, and felt like it'd truly nailed it's goal for me here. Other players did comment they wouldn't want to manage as many resources as I was juggling (Resonance, Spell Points, Wand Charges, Staff Charges, Channel Pool, Spells Remaining & Hero Points - I had a wide range of tracking counters & dice out :) ), but personally I enjoyed it and felt I caused it with my gear choices so it's an option for those who want to manage resources. Resonance was typically the cause of our resting but it didn't feel too premature.


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I'm not very worried. The devs seem to understand that the Resonance/Healing/Consumable problem is complex and intertwined and working on it. We may not know what they're going to do, but I'd be money it'll be better than the current system.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

You make a good point - they did acknowledge the healing issue & I guess I'd just jumped another step to "that's resonance related" based on how 1E played. They're probably pinning this to a different root cause and thinking around how it would be if that was fixed. Perhaps that's how I should be interpreting it.

I'm definitely holding out to see their solution & I expect it will be good. Their wording worried me that they'd missed this aspect - but I suspect you may be right that they're just not considering this a resonance impact.


Tim Schneider 908 wrote:

You make a good point - they did acknowledge the healing issue & I guess I'd just jumped another step to "that's resonance related" based on how 1E played. They're probably pinning this to a different root cause and thinking around how it would be if that was fixed. Perhaps that's how I should be interpreting it.

I'm definitely holding out to see their solution & I expect it will be good. Their wording worried me that they'd missed this aspect - but I suspect you may be right that they're just not considering this a resonance impact.

They know resonance accomplished their goal of cutting down on low level consumable spam, but exacerbated an underlying healing problem. I wouldn't worry about what Jason had said there, it very much was talking about a specific aspect of resonance, not its broader interactions. The devs know that it a complex issue balancing healing, healers, consumables, and resonance.

They're working on it. Not sure what they'll come up with, but it will be better than what we got here and I get we'll see some of it before the end of the playtest. Rumor looks like it might be a dual activation mechanic, something like a relatively crappy effect for a consumable, but if you spend a resonance it becomes far more potent. But, that is just the consumable portion and slight resonance tweak. What we get will be bigger than that.

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