Follow the Expert


Second Edition

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A new Pathfinder 2nd Edition exploration activity called Follow the Expert was revealed at the Garycon Pathfinder 2E Seminar with Mark Seifter giving the full name in comment #93. More recently Paizo revealed the full text of Follow the Expert at Paizocon as Pathfinder 2nd Edition Spoiler #94, available in the #MyPathfinderSpoiler thread.

Follow the Expert Exploration Activity
Auditory, Concentrate, Exploration, Visual
Choose an ally attempting a recurring skillcheck while exploring, such as climbing, or performing a different exploration tactic that requires a skill check (like Avoiding Notice). The ally must be at least an expert in that skill and must be willing to provide assistance. While Following the Expert, you match their tactic or attempt similiar skill checks. Thanks to you ally's assistance, you can add your level as a proficiency bonus to the associated skill check, even if you're untrained. Additionally, you gain a circumstance bonus to your skill check based on your ally's proficiency (+2 for expert, +3 for master, and +4 for legendary).

I like it.

In the Pathfinder 2nd Edition Playtest, Exploration Mode felt jerryrigged. That wasn't so bad, becuase the time between encounters was a roleplaying jerryrig in previous editions of Pathfinder and Dungeons & Dragons, but calling out a jerryrig as official rules felt unfinished. The Playtest rulebook said, "Exploration mode happens when the characters travel significant distances, delve into mysterious new locations, interact with nonplayer characters outside of combat or simply watch for danger. In this mode, time moves at whatever pace the GM sees fit." on page 7, and had similar words on page 290. That gave a role but no substance. The full description on pages 316-317, Travel Speed was a table of travel times, Encounter Tactics were some drawn-out encounter activities, Social Tactics suggested skill checks for roleplaying, and Rest and Daily Preparations gave the familiar before-we-start-exploring rules. This is rehashed on page 329. Exploration mode seemed largely an interactive time gap to prepare for, lead up to, or follow up on encounters.

Follow the Expert is an activity that gives substance to Exploration Mode. For example, if the character Starbuck is an expert in Sailing Lore and the party is crewing a small sailing boat by themselves, then Starbuck can declare, "Follow my lead. Doctor Amazo, you navigate; Chimney Sweep, you climb the rigging and handle the sails; Hercules, you haul on whichever rope needs hauling, and I will take the wheel." One sentence, one set of skill checks, and the adventure moves on smoothly. It will no longer feel jerryrigged.

Also, it is an expert-level basic activity. In the playtest, some skill-based activities could be performed untrained and others could be performed trained, but expert proficiency was not necessary. Expert mattered only for qualifying for feats. Expert was not awesome in itself; instead, it permitted awesome feats. With expert-level activities, an expert can show off their expertise directly. "Of course, we can cross that desert. I am an expert. Follow me."

Finally, I believe that Follow the Expert shows that Paizo listened to us playtesters. In the playtest chapter In Pale Mountain's Shadow my wife created a climbing-expert barbarian. And she wanted that her barbarian have some way to share her expertise with the rest of the party. The other players agreed, especially the player with rock-climbing experience: Expert Climber Aiding Trained Climbers. I thought that this would be a nice addition to the rules, perhaps a expert-level Save Other reaction. Paizo instead used the niche to expand the purpose of Exploration Mode. That's good, too.

Silver Crusade

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I like this one a lot, particularly for Organized Play it could enable players who want to try to sneak.


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I like it too. It means hat if you are untrained in something and alone while trying that thing, you are f****d. If you have a guide, you can do it.

That also means that a character whith a skill get their moment of spotlight when they help the party climb/swim/sneak.

Edit: And since it's an exploration tactic, you are still useless doing the thing in battle. Like it should be for someone untrained.


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Feels like I have played *so* many PFS scenarios where the adventure suggested or required a sneak option and the table looks at the martial and says ... not an option.

I'm glad that this enables these stories that PF1 couldn't manage, and does so in a way that's more interesting than, the Rogue rolls for the whole party.

One interesting wrinkle: no apparent requirement that the Expert be more-expert than you. So one Legendary Rogue can Follow another for that circumstance bonus. (I worried about reciprocal following, but the rule avoids that since the leader must be engaged in the underlying skill as her exploration action.)


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I agree, this is a major positive change for the system. Best part is that it's a baseline action rather than something you (or worse, the Expert themself) have to feat into.

I kinda wonder if we could broaden it even further; if the Bard wants to put on a play in a Hamlet-esque scenario, then he should be able to give the Barbarian quick instruction on how to perform her role the way he wants even though she lacks any previous acting experience. This would open up a ton of non-combat solutions to problems that simply were not feasible in PF1 because it was unrealistic to expect everyone to be trained in the same skills (and was a bad idea anyways in most scenarios).


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Arachnofiend wrote:

I agree, this is a major positive change for the system. Best part is that it's a baseline action rather than something you (or worse, the Expert themself) have to feat into.

I kinda wonder if we could broaden it even further; if the Bard wants to put on a play in a Hamlet-esque scenario, then he should be able to give the Barbarian quick instruction on how to perform her role the way he wants even though she lacks any previous acting experience. This would open up a ton of non-combat solutions to problems that simply were not feasible in PF1 because it was unrealistic to expect everyone to be trained in the same skills (and was a bad idea anyways in most scenarios).

I think you just codified wingman mechanics. Which honestly makes sense, even if both allies are experts. Sometimes a person's charisma shines through when they have someone else to bounce off of.


tqomins wrote:

One interesting wrinkle: no apparent requirement that the Expert be more-expert than you. So one Legendary Rogue can Follow another for that circumstance bonus.

(I worried about reciprocal following, but the rule avoids that since the leader must be engaged in the underlying skill as her exploration action.)

While Follow the Leader itself DOES require a Skill Check which should qualify, it doesn't functionally work on it's own without having original non-FtL activity to specify the check. It seems like reciprocal following could partially work if willing to solely engage in that activity, i.e. 2x Climbing, in which case the Leader could have one of explorations be FtL benefitting from Circumstance bonus (assuming somebody else is Expert).

I do get feeling it would be better balanced if it required the Leader to spend extra exploration action to Lead, possibly with # of Followers limited by CHA (min 1)? The size of the Circumstance bonuses feels potentially of concern, although I haven't had experience with new final math yet. Perception (or even Sense Motive?) just seem ripe for distortion if these bonuses become routinely available IMHO.

Does feel good to have some sort of system for this in place though.


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Quandary wrote:
I do get feeling it would be better balanced if it required the Leader to spend extra exploration action to Lead, possibly with # of Followers limited by CHA (min 1)? The size of the Circumstance bonuses feels potentially of concern, although I haven't had experience with new final math yet. Perception (or even Sense Motive?) just seem ripe for distortion if these bonuses become routinely available IMHO.

If each member of the group activity were a liability, then that would penalize large groups. The lowest value of n d20 rolls tends to be around (20/(n+1))+0.5, so four d20 rolls tends to have a low around 5, five d20 rolls should have a low around 4, six d20 rolls should have a low around 3. And the chance of a critical failure increases.

If each member of the group were an asset, then the bigger the better. Suppose the party and several NPCs are quickly improvising a barricade to protect a village from raiders and are guided by an expert in Crafting. The expert creates a design, ties together the first few logs as an example, and uses the villagers mostly to haul wood and dig holes. The highest value of n d20 rolls tends to be around 20.5 - (20/(n+1)), and the chance of a critical success increases.

However, both these cases would happen without Follow the Expert, too. Everyone rolls independently, some roll high and some roll low. The difference with Follow the Expert is that the expert is managing a group Aid, granting them minimal training and a guaranteed circumstance bonus. The expert leadership also organizes them which simplifies the roleplaying. I am willing to give more advantage to the players if it decreases the confusion in the game.

I don't think PF2 has an "exploration action" to spend as a penalty. Nevertheless, a houserule that organizing more people takes longer would be easy to justify. The expert carpenter could reach a point where adding more villagers to building the barricade won't build it any faster. A famous 1975 book named The Mythical Man-Month: Essays on Software Engineering by Fred Brooks once pointed out that adding more people to a software development project did not necessarily speed up the results. Brook's Law states, "Adding manpower to a late software project makes it later."


I did realize that even though Perception is something you might do while in Exploration mode, it technically isn't a skill so this wouldn't apply to it... Which I think is for the better.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

This is really cool, and alleviates some of the sting I still feel from Untrained being no bonus.


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Pathfinder Card Game, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
MaxAstro wrote:
This is really cool, and alleviates some of the sting I still feel from Untrained being no bonus.

I too would have preferred a bonus, but between this, the Pathfinder dedication, and the General? feat that add level to untrained, I think we will manage.


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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Arachnofiend wrote:

I agree, this is a major positive change for the system. Best part is that it's a baseline action rather than something you (or worse, the Expert themself) have to feat into.

I kinda wonder if we could broaden it even further; if the Bard wants to put on a play in a Hamlet-esque scenario, then he should be able to give the Barbarian quick instruction on how to perform her role the way he wants even though she lacks any previous acting experience. This would open up a ton of non-combat solutions to problems that simply were not feasible in PF1 because it was unrealistic to expect everyone to be trained in the same skills (and was a bad idea anyways in most scenarios).

I am now planing a play within a play, thanks for the idea.


THE BROKEN HOUSE OF KRIEGMOOR!!! :D

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Yes, yes, yes, this fixes one of my biggest fears that came from taking +level away from Untrained. Now a stealthy Rogue can lead the whole party in sneaking through an orc camp. And it fits the bill perfectly - if they follow her instructions closely (roll well) they'll be able to actually sneak past without looking like idiots, but there's still a change of this going south if somebody misreads Rogue's hand sign for going left and goes right (roll poorly).

Thank you, Paizo. Perhaps there could be an option via a skill/general feat to lower the required proficiency from Expert to Trained, but I'm still super happy.

And just like that, there's a new subscriber tag to my name.


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I agree, this is one of the most sensible updates we've seen coming out the playtest so far. IMO, with this finishing touch, the skill rules for PF2 are definitely a major improvement over PF1, in every way.


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Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Gonna take a moment to savor my complete victory. With this, every change to skills I wanted has been implemented!

I think it's important to note that this Follow the Expert framework should conceivably work for certain information gathering social skills.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

This looks great, the only thing I would like to see on top of it, is some way for a similarly skilled (or higher skill) person in the same skill to use the leader's lead to allow them to do another exploration action while following. Ie, with the stealth leader's assistance another stealthy type can follow along while also covering the trail, or detecting magic or scouting.

Something like if you're higher proficiency than the leader, drop your proficiency to match the leaders for the sake of this check, but conduct a second (non-fatiguing, if that;s still a thing) activity at the same time.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
NielsenE wrote:

This looks great, the only thing I would like to see on top of it, is some way for a similarly skilled (or higher skill) person in the same skill to use the leader's lead to allow them to do another exploration action while following. Ie, with the stealth leader's assistance another stealthy type can follow along while also covering the trail, or detecting magic or scouting.

Something like if you're higher proficiency than the leader, drop your proficiency to match the leaders for the sake of this check, but conduct a second (non-fatiguing, if that;s still a thing) activity at the same time.

For Stealth we already had that without needing another character. Admittedly you had to do it with a Legendary Feat (a bit too late in the game for my liking) but it was there in the Legendary Sneak feat.


Is this a feat or a tactic anyone can use?


Ninja in the Rye wrote:
Is this a feat or a tactic anyone can use?

It is something anyone can use, assuming there is an expert in the party who they can follow.


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Or to be more precise, it's a tactic anyone who is expert or higher can enable.

Silver Crusade

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Biztak wrote:
Arachnofiend wrote:

I agree, this is a major positive change for the system. Best part is that it's a baseline action rather than something you (or worse, the Expert themself) have to feat into.

I kinda wonder if we could broaden it even further; if the Bard wants to put on a play in a Hamlet-esque scenario, then he should be able to give the Barbarian quick instruction on how to perform her role the way he wants even though she lacks any previous acting experience. This would open up a ton of non-combat solutions to problems that simply were not feasible in PF1 because it was unrealistic to expect everyone to be trained in the same skills (and was a bad idea anyways in most scenarios).

I am now planing a play within a play, thanks for the idea.

It's a lovely idea, and now rules-compatible.

The bard puts on a play, the Rogue and Sorcerer take the lead roles, the Barbarian does a bit of stunt work and clowning, the Wizard does stage management and special effects. All of it can be role played, yet not too much hand-waving, die rolls are still in effect.

Paizo Employee Designer

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0o0o0 O 0o0o0 wrote:
Biztak wrote:
Arachnofiend wrote:

I agree, this is a major positive change for the system. Best part is that it's a baseline action rather than something you (or worse, the Expert themself) have to feat into.

I kinda wonder if we could broaden it even further; if the Bard wants to put on a play in a Hamlet-esque scenario, then he should be able to give the Barbarian quick instruction on how to perform her role the way he wants even though she lacks any previous acting experience. This would open up a ton of non-combat solutions to problems that simply were not feasible in PF1 because it was unrealistic to expect everyone to be trained in the same skills (and was a bad idea anyways in most scenarios).

I am now planing a play within a play, thanks for the idea.

It's a lovely idea, and now rules-compatible.

The bard puts on a play, the Rogue and Sorcerer take the lead roles, the Barbarian does a bit of stunt work and clowning, the Wizard does stage management and special effects. All of it can be role played, yet not too much hand-waving, die rolls are still in effect.

Yesterday in my War for the Crown game, we had the five characters who actually took the kind of skills you expect in an espionage AP, including the dwarf fighter who was actually a master at Deception, and then...the human fighter, who refused to raise Int or Cha even once and managed to not have any Int or Cha skills except the Lore from his background. Anyway, they needed to infiltrate a fortress at 12th level by all disguising as guards. The fighter naturally had +0. But with Follow the Expert on the master ranked rogue, he got +12 proficiency, +3 circumstance, and they slapped a +2 item bonus on him as well. With a hero point after a bad roll, he made his check, and they all managed to successfully infiltrate as guards!


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber
Mark Seifter wrote:
0o0o0 O 0o0o0 wrote:

It's a lovely idea, and now rules-compatible.

The bard puts on a play, the Rogue and Sorcerer take the lead roles, the Barbarian does a bit of stunt work and clowning, the Wizard does stage management and special effects. All of it can be role played, yet not too much hand-waving, die rolls are still in effect.

Yesterday in my War for the Crown game, we had the five characters who actually took the kind of skills you expect in an espionage AP, including the dwarf fighter who was actually a master at Deception, and then...the human fighter, who refused to raise Int or Cha even once and managed to not have any Int or Cha skills except the Lore from his background. Anyway, they needed to infiltrate a fortress at 12th level by all disguising as guards. The fighter naturally had +0. But with Follow the Expert on the master ranked rogue, he got +12 proficiency, +3 circumstance, and they slapped a +2 item bonus on him as well. With a hero point after a bad roll, he made his check, and they all managed to successfully infiltrate as guards!

Thanks for sharing, Mark, this is amazing. Follow the Expert just gets cooler and cooler the more I think about it. I think my players are going to love this mechanic.


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MaxAstro wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
Yesterday in my War for the Crown game, we had the five characters who actually took the kind of skills you expect in an espionage AP, including the dwarf fighter who was actually a master at Deception, and then...the human fighter, who refused to raise Int or Cha even once and managed to not have any Int or Cha skills except the Lore from his background. Anyway, they needed to infiltrate a fortress at 12th level by all disguising as guards. The fighter naturally had +0. But with Follow the Expert on the master ranked rogue, he got +12 proficiency, +3 circumstance, and they slapped a +2 item bonus on him as well. With a hero point after a bad roll, he made his check, and they all managed to successfully infiltrate as guards!
Thanks for sharing, Mark, this is amazing. Follow the Expert just gets cooler and cooler the more I think about it. I think my players are going to love this mechanic.

It's such a great mechanic. I'm particularly pleased about it for the context of organized play, of course, but it's a real gift for regular games as well.

Makes me wonder about "guide" character builds. Lots of skills, focused on those that would be particularly useful for follow the expert. I was never terribly interested in that sort of concept for the Ranger, e.g., but this definitely gives that whole idea more heft.


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Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Compared to everyone getting +level in everything, follow the expert is going to make a huge difference in long term satisfaction with the system. If every group had access to the same problem solving options, it murders immersion and party variety.


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Mark Seifter wrote:
0o0o0 O 0o0o0 wrote:
Biztak wrote:
Arachnofiend wrote:

I agree, this is a major positive change for the system. Best part is that it's a baseline action rather than something you (or worse, the Expert themself) have to feat into.

I kinda wonder if we could broaden it even further; if the Bard wants to put on a play in a Hamlet-esque scenario, then he should be able to give the Barbarian quick instruction on how to perform her role the way he wants even though she lacks any previous acting experience. This would open up a ton of non-combat solutions to problems that simply were not feasible in PF1 because it was unrealistic to expect everyone to be trained in the same skills (and was a bad idea anyways in most scenarios).

I am now planing a play within a play, thanks for the idea.

It's a lovely idea, and now rules-compatible.

The bard puts on a play, the Rogue and Sorcerer take the lead roles, the Barbarian does a bit of stunt work and clowning, the Wizard does stage management and special effects. All of it can be role played, yet not too much hand-waving, die rolls are still in effect.

Yesterday in my War for the Crown game, we had the five characters who actually took the kind of skills you expect in an espionage AP, including the dwarf fighter who was actually a master at Deception, and then...the human fighter, who refused to raise Int or Cha even once and managed to not have any Int or Cha skills except the Lore from his background. Anyway, they needed to infiltrate a fortress at 12th level by all disguising as guards. The fighter naturally had +0. But with Follow the Expert on the master ranked rogue, he got +12 proficiency, +3 circumstance, and they slapped a +2 item bonus on him as well. With a hero point after a bad roll, he made his check, and they all managed to successfully infiltrate as guards!

My player have wanted to do things like the Follow the Expert stuff for awhile now across multiple systems and I can't express to the Paizo team just how awesome this and many of the other PF2 mechanics are and just how appreciative my group is at your dedication to making the best game you can.

Paizo Employee Designer

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Lady Wrath wrote:
My player have wanted to do things like the Follow the Expert stuff for awhile now across multiple systems and I can't express to the Paizo team just how awesome this and many of the other PF2 mechanics are and just how appreciative my group is at your dedication to making the best game you can.

Creating the next evolution of the game we all love so much was challenging, time-consuming, stressful at times, but also gratifying. We hope you guys will able to enjoy games and stories for years to come!


Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Mark Seifter wrote:
Lady Wrath wrote:
My player have wanted to do things like the Follow the Expert stuff for awhile now across multiple systems and I can't express to the Paizo team just how awesome this and many of the other PF2 mechanics are and just how appreciative my group is at your dedication to making the best game you can.
Creating the next evolution of the game we all love so much was challenging, time-consuming, stressful at times, but also gratifying. We hope you guys will able to enjoy games and stories for years to come!

An it would be even better if Paizo gave us some proper previews instead of the constant "it's good but we are not telling you".

There has been no blog post about the 2nd edition since the beginning of the year (I just checked), no block post on the word-of-mouth product announcements at conventions, and a somewhat pointless 'game' of collect 100 cards which has no relevance to the rest of the world outside of the US.

It's sort of like you are ashamed to tell us anything substantial about it.

We put a ton of effort and spend a not insignificant amount of money on the playtest, and the response is a stoney silence.


Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Antony Walls wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
Lady Wrath wrote:
My player have wanted to do things like the Follow the Expert stuff for awhile now across multiple systems and I can't express to the Paizo team just how awesome this and many of the other PF2 mechanics are and just how appreciative my group is at your dedication to making the best game you can.
Creating the next evolution of the game we all love so much was challenging, time-consuming, stressful at times, but also gratifying. We hope you guys will able to enjoy games and stories for years to come!

An it would be even better if Paizo gave us some proper previews instead of the constant "it's good but we are not telling you".

There has been no blog post about the 2nd edition since the beginning of the year (I just checked), no block post on the word-of-mouth product announcements at conventions, and a somewhat pointless 'game' of collect 100 cards which has no relevance to the rest of the world outside of the US.

It's soft of like you are ashamed to tell us anything substantial about it.

I expect they are going to hit hard and fast now that Jason is back from PaizoCon/UK Games Expo/Vacation.


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

I expect they are going to hit hard and fast now that Jason is back from PaizoCon/UK Games Expo/Vacation.

That should have started two months ago.

Instead all we get is posts for:

"Our Art Is Good" - Yes we know, we agree, its very good, tell us about the rules.

"Out fiction Is Good" - Yes, we know, we agree, it is very entertaining, will you please tell us about the rules.

"Our Card Game is Good" - Yes, we know, we agree, it has an evolutionary and compatible design, What about those 2nd edition rules?

"Our organised play is Good" - Yes, we've heard, looks good, sort of irrelevant outside of conventions. Did I mention the rules?


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Antony Walls wrote:
Did I mention the rules?

They literally just let loose a hundred spoilers, 99 of which we have. We’ll be getting more info soon.


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Just be patient. They don't owe us ANY previews. Check it out (or don't) when new info appears.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber
Antony Walls wrote:

"Our Card Game is Good" - Yes, we know, we agree, it has an evolutionary and compatible design, What about those 2nd edition rules?

"Our organised play is Good" - Yes, we've heard, looks good, sort of irrelevant outside of conventions. Did I mention the rules?

Those two have nothing to do with 2E. There have been blog posts about what's coming to Organised Play and the Card Game since long before the playtest was announced


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

I mean, even on top of the 99 spoilers*, there's a couple whole threads full of entire sections of the book that have been revealed.

*Pour one out on the street for poor spoiler #85...


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I definitely liked "level to untrained," but I think Follow the Expert enables basically the same gameplay in a more thematic manner. I really love what's ended up happening with the exploration rules.

MaxAstro wrote:
I mean, even on top of the 99 spoilers*, there's a couple whole threads full of entire sections of the book that have been revealed.

Yeah, I don't think anyone was expecting to have the full multiclassing rules over a month before launch, but here we are.


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Pathfinder Card Game, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Landon Winkler wrote:
I definitely liked "level to untrained," but I think Follow the Expert enables basically the same gameplay in a more thematic manner. I really love what's ended up happening with the exploration rules.

Follow the Expert, a 3rd level General Feat, the Pathfinder dedication archetype; there are a number of ways to add your level to untrained skill checks, thankfully.


Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
First World Bard wrote:
Landon Winkler wrote:
I definitely liked "level to untrained," but I think Follow the Expert enables basically the same gameplay in a more thematic manner. I really love what's ended up happening with the exploration rules.
Follow the Expert, a 3rd level General Feat, the Pathfinder dedication archetype; there are a number of ways to add your level to untrained skill checks, thankfully.

That is why I said in another thread that not adding level to untrained skill checks was a bad idea -- as confirmed by all of these methods for adding level to untrained skill checks anyway.

My first prediction for Pathfinder 3rd edition is that it will add character level to all checks, both trained and untrained.


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I like Follow the Expert just because it means that I don't need to get trained on Stealth in every single character.


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I think the only thing I can think of in defense of the "but where are all my rules reveals" folks is that Paizo has been releasing much of it through interviews, streams, and what have you rather than blog posts. That was a critique folks had during the playtest as well.

But... there are probably reasons why doing what they are doing is easier for them or better for their business model. Jason just mentioned the 100 spoiler cards took him 10 hours to do. 10 hours! That's more than a full work day. That is so much time. By comparison, we learned so much from the UK game expo interview based on the pages they flipped through, and I would hazard a guess that didn't take 10 hours of Paizo time. I mean interview prep is a thing and all, but the questions and answers they were going into there were the same questions and answers we have had for nearly 2 years now. What was really juicy was Erik just flipping through several pages at what might as well have been random and folks analyzing the image stills.

It is also possible they are trying to avoid some of the board fighting that seemed to permeate the playtest preview blogs. Those were... rough.


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David knott 242 wrote:
First World Bard wrote:
Landon Winkler wrote:
I definitely liked "level to untrained," but I think Follow the Expert enables basically the same gameplay in a more thematic manner. I really love what's ended up happening with the exploration rules.
Follow the Expert, a 3rd level General Feat, the Pathfinder dedication archetype; there are a number of ways to add your level to untrained skill checks, thankfully.

That is why I said in another thread that not adding level to untrained skill checks was a bad idea -- as confirmed by all of these methods for adding level to untrained skill checks anyway.

My first prediction for Pathfinder 3rd edition is that it will add character level to all checks, both trained and untrained.

I disagree that it was a bad idea and that those options show it.

I think Follow the Leader is a way better solution than just giving level to untrained skills. It needs teamwork, so it let's the leader character shine. It means alone you have problems. And it means even a leader can't help you in combat with skills. It just has more variety than "just add level".

If you want that, you'll habe to invest in feats to be that jack-of-all-trades. Which is okay too because it makes those special concepts.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

I'm of two minds, really. I think Follow the Leader is a better solution for skills standalone.

However, I really liked the design space opened by skills being on the same scale as combat abilities, thus allowing direct skill vs combat ability contests. The way it is now, you can never have a combat ability for which a skill is the only defense, and that's a bit of a shame.


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Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Captain Morgan wrote:

I think the only thing I can think of in defense of the "but where are all my rules reveals" folks is that Paizo has been releasing much of it through interviews, streams, and what have you rather than blog posts. That was a critique folks had during the playtest as well.

But... there are probably reasons why doing what they are doing is easier for them or better for their business model. Jason just mentioned the 100 spoiler cards took him 10 hours to do. 10 hours! That's more than a full work day. That is so much time. By comparison, we learned so much from the UK game expo interview based on the pages they flipped through, and I would hazard a guess that didn't take 10 hours of Paizo time. I mean interview prep is a thing and all, but the questions and answers they were going into there were the same questions and answers we have had for nearly 2 years now. What was really juicy was Erik just flipping through several pages at what might as well have been random and folks analyzing the image stills.

It is also possible they are trying to avoid some of the board fighting that seemed to permeate the playtest preview blogs. Those were... rough.

The biggest mistake is the assumption that most of the player base follows social media, when in my experience the exact opposite is the case.

No scientific, but I GM two groups and play in three others. Of these, 95% of the players are tech savvy, four are software developers, none of them use social media further than sending and receiving emails. Neither do I.

I read the Blog on their behalf - and I am getting nothing. I read enworld, who have no news because there are no blogs.

I normally do not have the time to hunt through forums looking for second hand news.

I am confused about by Paizo developers do not use their own site


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I wonder how much pressure there is going to be to ensure that a party contains at least one expert in every (non-lore) skill.

A character appears to get training in 5 skills at level 1 though there are other sources of training, there are 17 skills, and being an expert requires the investmenent of a single skill increase.

When you add that there's probably never a need for following the expert in any kind of lore, craft, performance (barring something like the play in council of thieves or the dance contest in hell's rebels), and perhaps thievery (only one person need pick the lock) and the 4 ritual skills this seems pretty doable.


PossibleCabbage wrote:

I wonder how much pressure there is going to be to ensure that a party contains at least one expert in every (non-lore) skill.

A character appears to get training in 5 skills at level 1 though there are other sources of training, there are 17 skills, and being an expert requires the investmenent of a single skill increase.

When you add that there's probably never a need for following the expert in any kind of lore, craft, performance (barring something like the play in council of thieves or the dance contest in hell's rebels), and perhaps thievery (only one person need pick the lock) and the 4 ritual skills this seems pretty doable.

We have a risk that skills could become an expected part for roles. Groups would expect that the martial characters (Barbarian/Fighter role) will become experts in Athletics, Intimidation, and Survival, healers (Cleric role) will become experts in Religion, Medicine, and Nature, stealthy tricksters (Rogue role) will become experts in Deception, Stealth, and Thievery, and primary spellcasters (Sorcerer/Wizard role) will become experts in Arcana, Diplomacy, and Occultism. Acrobatics, Crafting, Performance, and Society will be considered extra, and therefore a waste of expertise. Lore will be arbitrary.

Thus, a high-Dexterity lawful monk who became an expert in Acrobatics and Stealth would be criticized by some formula-minded players who say that he should have studied Deception or Thievery rather than Acrobatics.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:

I wonder how much pressure there is going to be to ensure that a party contains at least one expert in every (non-lore) skill.

A character appears to get training in 5 skills at level 1 though there are other sources of training, there are 17 skills, and being an expert requires the investmenent of a single skill increase.

When you add that there's probably never a need for following the expert in any kind of lore, craft, performance (barring something like the play in council of thieves or the dance contest in hell's rebels), and perhaps thievery (only one person need pick the lock) and the 4 ritual skills this seems pretty doable.

In the Playtest it felt like the Rogue straight up ran out of choices at some point and they started learning/boosting random skills.

Liberty's Edge

I wouldn't worry as much about that.

For one thing, Rogues get double the options everyone else gets and thus almost can't get pigenonholed (I mean, they'll wind up expected to have Thievery and Stealth, but that's it).

For another, casters vary too much to have one 'expected' skill set for them. Nor does Follow the Expert rely on high stats, meaning it's not essential that it be the high Wisdom guy who has Survival, just someone.

I would expect that groups that create characters together will work to cover all the necessary skills, but which character covers which will vary a fair bit, and some skills benefit quite a bit from more than one Expert (indeed, you need one Expert for every unskilled person, on average).


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Deadmanwalking wrote:
some skills benefit quite a bit from more than one Expert (indeed, you need one Expert for every unskilled person, on average).

What do you mean by that?


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
graystone wrote:
caps wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:
some skills benefit quite a bit from more than one Expert (indeed, you need one Expert for every unskilled person, on average).
What do you mean by that?
"Choose an ally attempting a recurring skillcheck while exploring". That means every PC that has a bad skill check needs another PC with a good skill check to help them.

You're adding words. :) It just says "choose an ally attempting a recurring skillcheck while exploring" so there is nothing stopping one or more of your other friends from choosing that same ally.


caps wrote:
graystone wrote:
caps wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:
some skills benefit quite a bit from more than one Expert (indeed, you need one Expert for every unskilled person, on average).
What do you mean by that?
"Choose an ally attempting a recurring skillcheck while exploring". That means every PC that has a bad skill check needs another PC with a good skill check to help them.
You're adding words. :) It just says "choose an ally attempting a recurring skillcheck while exploring" so there is nothing stopping one or more of your other friends from choosing that same ally.

I misread it and deleted the post when I reread it but it seems you saw it before I did. Sorry.

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