Update 1.4 dwarf ... hunh?


Ancestries & Backgrounds


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Ok, so now we get a free heritage trait in addition to the ancestory trait. You pick a heritage at first, only gain one, and can never change it.

But Hardy and Unburdened and Ancient blood where made into heritage, meaning that you can only ever gain one.

Which makes Unburdened an almost auto take for any dwarf even considering taking heavy armor.

Which makes Hardy almost an auto take for any class that that doesn't start at expert in Fortitude.

Ancient Blood is still awful considering its a reaction and permanently reduces your Resonance by 2. The classes that could use it the most either have something similar (paladin) or have so many things using their reactions that they wouldn't bother taking this.

The new desert runner is good considering how often players typically run into fire damage. And heat exhaustion is a thing.

But at the start of the racial section for the update it says they added new feats to replace the existing ones, and basically they said the new feats would be better.

So we get a new ancestory feat at lvl 9, Mountain Stoutness, which gives +1hp a level and +1 to recovery saves. Nice, but its the same as toughness (and stacks) which is a general feat you can take at humans and everyone at 3rd.

Stonewalker at 9th, and that is a very powerful feat, especially for a rogue. Meld into Stone

Weapon Expertise at 13th with dwarven weapons. Frankly, pretty niche. Some classes will gain a bit of use from it, clerics primarily coming to mind. Really ... cleric only thing coming to mind.

This really seems pretty bad for dwarves below level 10.


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Dwarves were the strongest ancestry so they didn't get much out of the update while all the other ancestries did.


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Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I didn't feel that Dwarves were overpowered, all the races needed more built in. Dwarves included.


WatersLethe wrote:
I didn't feel that Dwarves were overpowered, all the races needed more built in. Dwarves included.

Those two aren't mutually exclusive. Dwarves were the strongest ancestry and all ancestries needed more stuff. So every ancestry got more stuff but dwarves got a little less to make them more comparable.


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I think it really hurts that everyone else (gnomes) are now speed 25+, dwarves are still 20, and the one ability they had to mitigate the effects of wearing medium and heavy armor they now have to spend their heritage feat (or should that be "feet" in this case).

I felt like dwarves were pretty decent, better then gnomes for certain, but not much better then the other races. Now I think the other races are probably better. Look at the new halfling Keen Eyes ability.


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The speed thing is pretty brutal, especially since unburdened is a pretty weak heritage. Most heritage's are about as strong as a general feat, unburdened is like fleet only a bit worse since it only works when wearing heavy or medium armor.


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I definitely dislike how Hardy and Unburdened are mutually exclusive. It definitely feels like every Dwarf should have some form of "not bothered by encumbrance" (even if you don't wear armor, you will want to carry stuff) and the heritage should give an improved up version of that.

Like Dwarves are now the only 20 speed ancestry and roughly 75% of them are going to move at speed 10 in heavy armor. Being that slow just isn't fun.


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It seems hard to discuss this independently of other Race speeds.

I'm just not down with the increases to Small race speeds.
If they want to have Heritage option for 5', that's OK (but should probably be Light Armor only).

I don't think Elves should have higher base speed AND base Feat option to increase that further.
(I mean, they can do that via Fleet, but giving them ANOTHER option on top is just insane)
I would be OK with HIGH level Ancestry Feat increasing speed (probably should have Light Armor req too),
but doubling up (or potentially tripling with Fleet) at 1st level is just absurd.
Personally I don't see it as necessary for Elves to have baked-in speed advantage, I think that is very reasonable Heritage option...
Which could be especially good seeing that there is only ONE "normal" Elf heritage
(the others focusing on Jinin, Snowcasters, Wild Elves - albeit "Jungle Elf" Heritage IS relevant to temperate forest ranger Elves if you ignore the name)
so having another Heritage focusing on aspect compatible with "normal" Elves is HUGELY desirable from my perspective...
...And that serves to lessen divergence from 25' norm.

That Dwarves are now the only race left behind at 20' just makes it extra insulting, but IMHO
the 20' speed itself is not problem for Dwarves, and ALL Smalls should themselves have same 20' default.

FYI, 20:25 is higher ratio (80%) than former 3.x/P1E Dwarf/Halfling/Gnome speed was vs Human (20:30 66%).
All the Slow races were already given proportionate boost just by that change, so I see NO basis to give any of them more of a boost.
Elves going crazy with speed can/should be addressed independently because it's too crazy just on it's own.

I think it's also reasonable that Fleet be given a higher level pre-req, which also makes it compete against stronger Feats at that higher level. This does prevent Slow races catching up early, but it also prevents Fast races from increasing the speed difference even more, which is the most important factor IMHO.

Grand Lodge

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Unburdened shouldn't be a heritage and should be moved to a feat

In addition, Unburdened isn't as good as Fleet for elves (especially with their speed stacking) and should either remove up to -10ft penalty for armor and/or should reduce armor penalty (as mentioned from others).


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Gorignak227 wrote:
In addition, Unburdened isn't as good as Fleet for elves (especially with their speed stacking) and should either remove up to -10ft penalty for armor and/or should reduce armor penalty (as mentioned from others).

And seconded by me.


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Gorignak227 wrote:

Unburdened shouldn't be a heritage and should be moved to a feat

In addition, Unburdened isn't as good as Fleet for elves (especially with their speed stacking) and should either remove up to -10ft penalty for armor and/or should reduce armor penalty (as mentioned from others).

My preference is that Unburdened should be UNburdened not Slightly Less Burdened. No speed reduction from Armor or/and Encumbrance.


Quandary wrote:

It seems hard to discuss this independently of other Race speeds.

I'm just not down with the increases to Small race speeds.
If they want to have Heritage option for 5', that's OK (but should probably be Light Armor only).

I don't think Elves should have higher base speed AND base Feat option to increase that further.
(I mean, they can do that via Fleet, but giving them ANOTHER option on top is just insane)
I would be OK with HIGH level Ancestry Feat increasing speed (probably should have Light Armor req too),
but doubling up (or potentially tripling with Fleet) at 1st level is just absurd.
Personally I don't see it as necessary for Elves to have baked-in speed advantage, I think that is very reasonable Heritage option...
Which could be especially good seeing that there is only ONE "normal" Elf heritage
(the others focusing on Jinin, Snowcasters, Wild Elves - albeit "Jungle Elf" Heritage IS relevant to temperate forest ranger Elves if you ignore the name)
so having another Heritage focusing on aspect compatible with "normal" Elves is HUGELY desirable from my perspective...
...And that serves to lessen divergence from 25' norm.

That Dwarves are now the only race left behind at 20' just makes it extra insulting, but IMHO
the 20' speed itself is not problem for Dwarves, and ALL Smalls should themselves have same 20' default.

FYI, 20:25 is higher ratio (80%) than former 3.x/P1E Dwarf/Halfling/Gnome speed was vs Human (20:30 66%).
All the Slow races were already given proportionate boost just by that change, so I see NO basis to give any of them more of a boost.
Elves going crazy with speed can/should be addressed independently because it's too crazy just on it's own.

I think it's also reasonable that Fleet be given a higher level pre-req, which also makes it compete against stronger Feats at that higher level. This does prevent Slow races catching up early, but it also prevents Fast races from increasing the speed difference even more, which is the most important factor IMHO.

On the other hand, being small no longer gives any bonus.

So why do you think that inherently all Small races need a huge malus (-speed) but not an equally strong bonus (like the old +attack/ac or inherent bonuses to stealth and etc)


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I think they should give back that bonus as an Ancestry characteristic.


LordVanya wrote:
I think they should give back that bonus as an Ancestry characteristic.

I agree. The change to damage die is enough for them, the rest can be like it was before, a mix of advantages and flaws.

Liberty's Edge

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I also agree this needs to change. I'm not sure precisely how, and I understand why they did it (as Dwarf was the strongest Ancestry chassis previously) but it's gone from strongest chassis to weakest one, which is an issue.

Personally, my inclination would be to give all Dwarves one of the other Heritages in some mechanically altered form (a weakened Ancient's Blood with no downside, say), and make Unburdened eliminate all speed penalties from armor. That leaves it very good, improves the base chassis, and also leaves the 'not everyone will want this' factor.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber

I'd be down with giving dwarves a base speed of 25' and then going from there. With them being the only 20' race, they either need unburdened baseline (since they're effectively trading their speed for it) or they should be the same speed baseline and can be even better off in the long run with a heritage.

They really were the strongest ancestry before these changes, though, so them ending up slightly weaker isn't unexpected. Now they're just a tad too weak, comparatively.


swordchucks wrote:
With them being the only 20' race, they either need unburdened baseline (since they're effectively trading their speed for it) or they should be the same speed baseline and can be even better off in the long run with a heritage.

Agreed. Even with Unburdened the 20 foot speed is painful. Great when you're wearing heavy armor, in comparison to not having it, but it still means you're moving at 20 feet (and 20 feet is slow).


I feel like if we're not willing to give Unburdened for free to all Dwarves, at the very least it should be an ancestry feat rather than a heritage. Since if you want to be a Dwarf who wears heavy armor, you're pretty much locked into a single heritage. A Dwarf Paladin, for example, either has to ignore all the class features about heavy armor, opt not to have the blood of the ancients, be resistant to poison, or to be from the desert.

Other ancestry/class combinations don't have one heritage as so optimal as to be mandatory.


Keeping it real, I don't think missing out on Blood of Ancients is a big deal for Dwarf Paladin, because they can take Divine Grace, and there's no way for those to stack because both are Circumstance Bonuses AND Reactions.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber

The biggest issue with making Unburdened an ancestry feat is that other races could then poach it through Adopted Ancestry, which dilutes its uniqueness a lot (and leads to a ton of martial characters being adopted by dwarves).

I'm of the opinion that the race should either have it back baseline (since they're the only 20' speed race) or they should get a 25' base speed like everyone else.


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They shouldn't be only 20' race in first place. Why accept that absurdity?
They have never ever been meant to be slower than Small races.


swordchucks wrote:
I'd be down with giving dwarves a base speed of 25' and then going from there. With them being the only 20' race, they either need unburdened baseline (since they're effectively trading their speed for it) or they should be the same speed baseline and can be even better off in the long run with a heritage.

I'm in favor of 20ft with Unburdened (ignore speed reduction armor/encumbrance). I think it gives them a mechanically unique place in the rules and that's worth a lot more than an extra 5ft of movement. I've seen a few Dwarf Monks carrying incredible loads in previous editions and I'd be disappointed to see that go. Especially now as I'd like to see a Dwarf Alchemist carting around an entire lab or a Dwarf Ranger carting around a bunch of snares.


swordchucks wrote:
The biggest issue with making Unburdened an ancestry feat is that other races could then poach it through Adopted Ancestry...

I wouldn't allow it as a GM but they do really need to lock down Adopted Ancestry. "As long as the ancestry feats don’t require any feature of that ancestry’s physiology, as determined by the GM" is too open ended. Separating Culture from Physiology would require a lot of work but it would remedy this.


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Quandary wrote:
Keeping it real, I don't think missing out on Blood of Ancients is a big deal for Dwarf Paladin, because they can take Divine Grace, and there's no way for those to stack because both are Circumstance Bonuses AND Reactions.

But, I mean, if I have an idea for a Dwarven Paladin who is one of the Pahmet, I have to choose between "the heritage that is most appropriate for my Backstory" and "the heritage that makes my class playable".

At issue is less that "you can do without heat resistance" and more that "speed 10 is so slow as to be really unfun"- the nimble elf is literally 4 times faster than you.


PossibleCabbage wrote:
At issue is less that "you can do without heat resistance" and more that "speed 10 is so slow as to be really unfun"- the nimble elf is literally 4 times faster than you.

And mobility matters a lot in this action economy.


I'm not down with all the small races being 25' and the Dwarves (a medium race) being only 20'. That seems pretty absurd.

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber

Moving all other races to 25' is obviously for the same reason as Unburdened is a tax on a 20' speed race - having a 10' speed due to heavy armor is just not fun. I get that. I'm actually alright with all the other races having 25' speed (or all races, even).

The dwarf should get the current version of Unburdened as baseline if they retain the 20' speed. The dwarf should also have an ancestry feat (that requires the Unburdened racial feature) that eliminates all penalties to speed from encumbrance, armor, and lets them ignore 5' of Hampered).

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