Some thoughts on the 1.6 Paladin


Classes


So with the 1.6 Paladin we were given conformation of non-LG Paladins, and what those look like. I have some thoughts and opinions I'd like to share.

First of all, I am really happy the alignment has been opened up, and I am especially excited at the prospect of more then 9 Paladins, since more can be created with the same alignments but different value systems, or even independent of alignment.

What I dislike is that it seems that all of the Paladins will have a reaction as their main class feature; just within the domain of LG I want a sword of Right and Justice, that gets basically smite evil instead. This seems overly restrictive, and dismisses many loved and cherished tropes for no reason.

What I suggest (besides opening up the above restriction) is to have class feats with alignment prerequisites (single element only). This will help both to differentiate the different the different Paladins and emphasize the common ground between some of them, all with lower page count than many feats with the various reactions as prerequisites.

What do you folk think?

All in all, great work done, and hopefully great work ahead!


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Honestly, I do see where people are coming from on the lack of smiting paladins. It's something that has been the way to make the holy warriors that slay the wicked for years and making the paladin main class be focused on defending seems to take it away. But I don't agree that, with how the game is set up, it isn't an option. Instead I see that paladin and fighter are made to be complimentary for character concepts.

This is why I think paladin should be renamed to guardian or something at this point, have alignment restrictions taken away and paladin be made into a prestige archetype. That way it could feel special, hell more special I would say.

To me, paladin feels like a prestige class that got turned into a basic class (which I think it might have been, like bard, but that's another story). They're a class that has great fluff, a powerful concept and combine two classes' abilities (or did).

But my insane ramblings about paladins being a bit too special to be a base class aside, I think making a bunch of specific feats for each alignment would just be silly when most of them could be one feat that gives a baseline for the feat and then something else that changes to the alignment/code. The example is making the feat that gives you the ability to add traits to your sword always have fire available because fire can represent any alignment (knowledge and reason for neutral; creation and warmth for good; destruction for evil; punishment for law and passion for chaos are just some examples) and can have the corresponding damage to the alignment as options as well.


My problem isn't the lack of smite (well, not my main problem), it's that all paladins have a reactive main class feature. Why limit the design space?

As for the paladin being the complementary defending class to the fighter, I don't see where you're coming from; the fighter can defend just fine, and the paladin has magical powers and entirely different fluff.

As for the alignment feats, I'm not saying all feats should be alignment feats, I'm saying that once all alignments are available it's a good method to distinguish and associate between the different alignments. And I'm only talking about having alignment components as prerequisites, that's only four different types. Much better than different feats for each paladin type (which is what we've seen in 1.6).


As for the two being complementary I meant that they mix well for character concepts. Offensive martial characters want to take fighter main class or multiclass for more attack feats and features.

As far as all of the main class features being reactive I really don't get that, lay on hands is healing. Their reaction is a reaction, one that can be done to more often than AoO from fighter and I wouldn't call it their main feature.

Main feature to me would be the thing that makes me want to play the class or multiclass into it. I don't think of their reaction abilities for that, I think of lay on hands.


Kaboogy wrote:
My problem isn't the lack of smite (well, not my main problem), it's that all paladins have a reactive main class feature. Why limit the design space?

You can do some really fun stuff with reactions. Just saying.

For example:

Quote:

Kick them While They're Down

Trigger: When an ally you are flanking with attacks the flanked enemy
Action: Make a Strike against the enemy at a -2. The damage of this Strike is Evil damage. If the enemy is also good, additionally deal 2d6 persistent Evil damage.
On a miss: trip the enemy

It might be a reaction, but it's pretty proactive and powerful.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Draco18s wrote:
Kaboogy wrote:
My problem isn't the lack of smite (well, not my main problem), it's that all paladins have a reactive main class feature. Why limit the design space?

You can do some really fun stuff with reactions. Just saying.

For example:

Quote:

Kick them While They're Down

Trigger: When an ally you are flanking with attacks the flanked enemy
Action: Make a Strike against the enemy at a -2. The damage of this Strike is Evil damage. If the enemy is also good, additionally deal 2d6 persistent Evil damage.
On a miss: trip the enemy
It might be a reaction, but it's pretty proactive and powerful.

]

it is powerful, it is not proactive.


Rob Godfrey wrote:


it is powerful, it is not proactive.

It takes advantage of positioning and sets up a combo.

Yes, it's not an active ability ("I am going to...") but it does trigger off situations you can create.

Quote:
creating or controlling a situation by causing something to happen rather than responding to it after it has happened.

Rather than the existing paladin reactions which require enemies to not-hit-me (and it interrupts (and I need to be somewhere (and I need to...))).


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Draco18s wrote:
Rob Godfrey wrote:


it is powerful, it is not proactive.

It takes advantage of positioning and sets up a combo.

Yes, it's not an active ability ("I am going to...") but it does trigger off situations you can create.

Quote:
creating or controlling a situation by causing something to happen rather than responding to it after it has happened.
Rather than the existing paladin reactions which require enemies to not-hit-me (and it interrupts (and I need to be somewhere (and I need to...))).

Ok, I'll grant that, valid point.


Draco18s wrote:


You can do some really fun stuff with reactions. Just saying.

For example:

Quote:

Kick them While They're Down

Trigger: When an ally you are flanking with attacks the flanked enemy
Action: Make a Strike against the enemy at a -2. The damage of this Strike is Evil damage. If the enemy is also good, additionally deal 2d6 persistent Evil damage.
On a miss: trip the enemy
It might be a reaction, but it's pretty proactive and powerful.

That's a good point, and I think a portion of what annoys is that the reactions are all so... well.. reactive, like you said further down. That said, it being what I consider a main class feature (being one of the two things you get at level 1), cementing it as a reaction cement the paladin as a reactor instead of a proactor (is that a word?), and lay on hands also works in that direction a bit. I mean, it's a valid design choice, just not what I typically think of as a paladin. Tomato tomahto.

Thoughts on the suggested alignment feats?

Edit: just thought that with a change of name and removing the resistance, retributive strike works really well as a proactive evil reaction ><


Kaboogy wrote:
That's a good point, and I think a portion of what annoys is that the reactions are all so... well.. reactive, like you said further down. That said, it being what I consider a main class feature (being one of the two things you get at level 1), cementing it as a reaction cement the paladin as a reactor instead of a proactor (is that a word?), and lay on hands also works in that direction a bit. I mean, it's a valid design choice, just not what I typically think of as a paladin. Tomato tomahto.

The Fighter's attack of opportunity is also very reactive. You can at least utilize it in a few situations, either by threatening a caster-type or blocking a hallway, etc. But it's also a feature that's less a "defining feature" of the class. I dunno.

Quote:
Thoughts on the suggested alignment feats?

I could see value in them, particularly for the builds of "I'm a paladin of nature and my power is blah." But "I'm also Lawful Neutral, so I can pick up this feat that gives blub, enhancing my lawfulness."

Quote:
Edit: just thought that with a change of name and removing the resistance, retributive strike works really well as a proactive evil reaction ><

Framing. :)


Draco18s wrote:


The Fighter's attack of opportunity is also very reactive. You can at least utilize it in a few situations, either by threatening a caster-type or blocking a hallway, etc. But it's also a feature that's less a "defining feature" of the class. I dunno.

I have to disagree here. With AoO you control the situation, you make sure that the enemy either doesn't move/cast/etc. or gets a wallop. Not reactive at all.


Kaboogy wrote:
I have to disagree here. With AoO you control the situation, you make sure that the enemy either doesn't move/cast/etc. or gets a wallop. Not reactive at all.

I'll...agree that you can use it for battlefield control (whereas the original Retributive Strike was very hard to use that way).

I think I was more thinking that it doesn't trigger except when an enemy does something (and that you don't control), but as you can pretty much get up in a caster's face and they either get hit for moving or get hit for casting, it severely limits their options.

Unlike the (original) Retributive Strike where enemies lost nothing by swinging at the paladin instead of his ally. Maybe some average DPR due to differences in ACs, but with the way the math works, it's pretty close to nothing.

Now with the current rules, the enemy may not be able to swing at the paladin, but Retributive Strike still procs anyway (it just isn't an attack, but a hefty amount of DR). It's still pretty reactive and the paladin may be giving up other opportunities, so it's not great, but its certainly better than it was.


I wouldn't personally want to play a non LG paladin (not to say others shouldn't. I just wouldn't be into it). I also won't play a paladin without smite evil.


If the current paladin is renamed Defender or Guardian, and the PF1 paladin is made a holy warrior archetype, that might work.

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