You can take 2 additional flaws to get another boost during Ancestry selection!


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion

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Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
graystone wrote:
I think you and I have different ideas of what a bandit [outlaw, raider and/or highwayman that's part of a gang IMO] is.

Well yes, it is a rather ubiquitous term.

Robber, highwayman, raider?

Quote:
When I think of bandit, I'm think of someone that can fight, ride a horse and set up an ambush.

Sounds like a Ranger more than a Fighter, and Strength still isn't a core concern.


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graystone wrote:
You find it "intuitive" to be told what stats to prioritize in step 3, after you've already placed bonuses in your stats twice before that point? Cool if you do, but I don't agree.

Step 1 of the process is "choose your concept" and at in the playtest book that section contains an overview of all the major class options and what stats are relevant to them.


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Squiggit wrote:
graystone wrote:
You find it "intuitive" to be told what stats to prioritize in step 3, after you've already placed bonuses in your stats twice before that point? Cool if you do, but I don't agree.
Step 1 of the process is "choose your concept" and at in the playtest book that section contains an overview of all the major class options and what stats are relevant to them.

That's cool but I didn't think it went into the subsets:

Alchemist says key Intelligence, secondary Constitution, Dexterity.

The subsets say
Chirurgeons Prioritize Intelligence and Wisdom. Constitution increases your survivability, and Dexterity helps you hit with ranged attacks when violence is necessary
Bomber Prioritize Intelligence and Dexterity. Constitution helps you survive explosions gone wrong, and Wisdom prevents you from bombing the wrong target
Mutagenist Prioritize Intelligence and Strength.

So depending on your subset, you might want to look at str, dex, con, int, or wisdom and that's not something you get from that section in the playtest concept section. A mutagenist might have no strength added by the class section and the other two might not have any wisdom.


First World Bard wrote:
thflame wrote:
Is that a Adventurer's League Rule? 5e's PHB says (15, 15, 15, 8, 8, 8) is a valid array with Point Buy.
I'm probably misremembering or conflating with a different system (4E?), then. Fun fact: I've used the Standard array for all of my 5E PCs.

4e had zero dumping. It had a starting array of 8, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10 and you could only boost stats. So yeah, pretty likely your confused with 4e ;)

FYI: That is the starting array and point buy limitations I would have likely used had I gotten to run another PF1e game.


Great...Hate to see this sort of min/maxing thing again. The standard parade of idiots and weaklings as professional adventurers has been baffling for thirty years now.

Better idea would have been to not pigeon hole ancestries with set stat boosts in the first place, just take adventurers as exceptional individuals who don't necessarily have to be chained to stereotypes. Free choice of +2/+2 for everyone, no exceptions.


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Voss wrote:
The standard parade of idiots and weaklings as professional adventurers has been baffling for thirty years now.

I don't really see how turning the barbarians mental stats from 10 to 8 is changing him from normal to idiot... Does turning a stat from 10 to 12 make them a genius or strong level? IMO, an 8 stat isn't something to bemoan as too subpar to adventure with in a non key or secondary stat.


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I always saw each +1 as "one standard deviation from average", since like "there are five standard deviations within a given population as to how good an athlete you are" is something with an empirical basis.

So an 8 doesn't make you a sickly weakling- it makes you below average.


graystone wrote:
Voss wrote:
The standard parade of idiots and weaklings as professional adventurers has been baffling for thirty years now.
I don't really see how turning the barbarians mental stats from 10 to 8 is changing him from normal to idiot... Does turning a stat from 10 to 12 make them a genius or strong level? IMO, an 8 stat isn't something to bemoan as too subpar to adventure with in a non key or secondary stat.

Bit too metagame for me, I'm afraid.

Besides, this is 'every +1 matters' edition so, clearly, every -1 does too. Saddling the rest of the party with someone who's going to penalizing them with 2 (or even 3!) sets of rolls at -1 is pretty poor form. Why are they bringing this one along into life or death struggles?

So they can knock things over, drink poison and say exactly the wrong thing to the king? I've seen people excuse poor or 'funny' decisions with 'roleplaying' their stats too often to have much tolerance for it. Like CN, its too often used as the D&D excuse for FishMalking- some player at the table wants to be a problem (and possibly ALSO min/max), and I 'm just disappointed to see this particular excuse codified again.


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Voss wrote:

Bit too metagame for me, I'm afraid.

Besides, this is 'every +1 matters' edition so, clearly, every -1 does too. Saddling the rest of the party with someone who's going to penalizing them with 2 (or even 3!) sets of rolls at -1 is pretty poor form. Why are they bringing this one along into life or death struggles?

So they can knock things over, drink poison and say exactly the wrong thing to the king? I've seen people excuse poor or 'funny' decisions with 'roleplaying' their stats too often to have much tolerance for it. Like CN, its too often used as the D&D excuse for FishMalking- some player at the table wants to be a problem (and possibly ALSO min/max), and I 'm just disappointed to see this particular excuse codified again.

IMO, it would be best for the game if +0 was the lowest ability modifier to a roll. It's similar to why I think the game would be better if they did away with ability scores. I understand why they didn't do that and I'm not complaining -- it's not like it's some sort of deal-breaker; it would simply have made a cleaner game.

But as far as min/maxing is concerned, I don't think this rule is going to have too huge an effect on it. It's still impossible to get more than 18 and less than 8.


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Voss wrote:
Bit too metagame for me, I'm afraid.

And that's fine: that's different from being upset about people turning into idiots.

Voss wrote:
Besides, this is 'every +1 matters' edition so, clearly, every -1 does too. Saddling the rest of the party with someone who's going to penalizing them with 2 (or even 3!) sets of rolls at -1 is pretty poor form. Why are they bringing this one along into life or death struggles?

Not really an issue: they either don't roll or take the Follow the Expert action, using the expert's rolls. Why on earth would someone without training AND a low skill be forced into a sucky roll when the game gives them an option to mitigate it? And if they are trained, they are better off than the person with a good score and no training past the first few levels.

Voss wrote:
So they can knock things over, drink poison and say exactly the wrong thing to the king? I've seen people excuse poor or 'funny' decisions with 'roleplaying' their stats too often to have much tolerance for it. Like CN, its too often used as the D&D excuse for FishMalking- some player at the table wants to be a problem (and possibly ALSO min/max), and I 'm just disappointed to see this particular excuse codified again.

This only happens if the PLAYER is an idiot... We aren't talking 3's or 4's but numbers ALREADY ALLOWED AND EXPECTED in the game: every non-human 'race' starts out with an 8 and they aren't thought of as universally stupid, clumsily or unable up even pull up their own pants... IMO the existence of goblins FAR eclipses any possible issue with 8 stats for the player that's looking to cause issue 'cuz that's the way i should play'.

PS: before someone complains, caps for emphasis and not an indication I'm 'yelling'. Caps easier then formatting ATM.

Shadow Lodge

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Voss wrote:
Great...Hate to see this sort of min/maxing thing again.

It's hardly min-maxing, this optional rule ends up giving you worse stats. It's clearly to help make any race/class combo viable, being down to at 16 in your class's primary stat is going to make more of a difference in this version than it did in first edition. Furthermore the few cases where it does end up providing a mechanical upgrade (Wizard dumping str and cha, Fighter/Barbarian dumping int and cha, can anyone think of any other combos?) it still can only boost a secondary or tertiary stat, resulting in a pretty small mechanical upgrade.

Voss wrote:
Free choice of +2/+2 for everyone, no exceptions.

I guess that would work too, but at that point you might as well give everyone an array to use and ignore stat boosts from any of the three steps.


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Voss wrote:
Bit too metagame for me, I'm afraid.

Really?

This whole "everyone should be exactly average or better at everything" is the part that sounds like a metagame construct here.

I'm not sure I really buy "someone might be an a+&@+$&" either. If someone wants to be a dick they're not going to suddenly change their mind because you forced them to play a character with 10 charisma.


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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Always the optimist, Voss.

I definitely agree that disruptive players are going to disrupt no matter what. The most disruptive player in my Hell's Rebels game has a character with 18 Charisma and 12 Wisdom. He just chooses to roleplay his character as if he had low wisdom.


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Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber

In my experience, the vast majority of players really just play themselves over and over again, regardless of the actual stats on the character sheet. So if the guy is a pain, he'll be a pain whether he has a 6 Cha or a 10.

On topic, I really like the option. As someone who has had a ton of fun playing a Halfling Barbarian and other off type race/class combos, I appreciate that it opens up more room for creative and off the wall combinations and RP opportunities. I also like that is has a cost, since there may be ancestry options that work well from a optimization stand point but are off type otherwise. This helps to mollify min/maxing.

An example would be a small druid or other pet class getting access to mounted combat options AND having an 18 starting Str. This is now doable in P2, but that means you have to pay for it with a lower stat elsewhere.

As far as character creation is concerned, This system won't likely be used by fairly new players. Additionally, since the whole system is designed to avoid the new vs. veteran system master gap, I would expect the a new player would do just fine with ONLY a 16 in their main stat. In P2 we are much less likely to see two melee PCs with a +4 difference in their to hit at the same level as you did in P1.


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Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Voss wrote:
Besides, this is 'every +1 matters' edition so, clearly, every -1 does too. Saddling the rest of the party with someone who's going to penalizing them with 2 (or even 3!) sets of rolls at -1 is pretty poor form. Why are they bringing this one along into life or death struggles?

I encourage everyone to read this paragraph of Voss' post once again.

When I was arguing for some mechanical benefit to offset the cost of opting to reduce an ability score, I was told ad nauseum that if it's for roleplay purposes I should just be satisfied with the built in rules to voluntarily take a penalty with no recompense. I was told that no one would reasonably complain about inflicting a no-benefit, RP only, handicap on the party.

hmmmm.


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While in general I dislike dumping I think the three specific things that make this implementation work is:

- It fixes the problem with certain ancestry/class combinations having no access to an 18 in their main stat.
- It allows you to play a member of an ancestry that is bad at somehing their people are expected to be good at (a sickly dwarf, a clumsy elf, an uncharismatic halfling.)
- It's painful enough (net -2) that people aren't going to do it for no reason and it can't get you 19 or a 20, so there's no real benefit most of the time.


Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber

It's also something you would only do at 1st level, since there are lots of free stat boosts at you level up. Adding in the fact that you can go from 16 to 18, but only 18 to 19, it really only benefits you at low level.


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WatersLethe wrote:
Voss wrote:
Besides, this is 'every +1 matters' edition so, clearly, every -1 does too. Saddling the rest of the party with someone who's going to penalizing them with 2 (or even 3!) sets of rolls at -1 is pretty poor form. Why are they bringing this one along into life or death struggles?

I encourage everyone to read this paragraph of Voss' post once again.

When I was arguing for some mechanical benefit to offset the cost of opting to reduce an ability score, I was told ad nauseum that if it's for roleplay purposes I should just be satisfied with the built in rules to voluntarily take a penalty with no recompense. I was told that no one would reasonably complain about inflicting a no-benefit, RP only, handicap on the party.

hmmmm.

I mean, Voss complains about everything. Does that qualify as reasonable?


j b 200 wrote:
It's also something you would only do at 1st level, since there are lots of free stat boosts at you level up. Adding in the fact that you can go from 16 to 18, but only 18 to 19, it really only benefits you at low level.

This is a good point that I hadn't fully considered. The diminishing return at higher than 18 will do a good deal to curb high-level min/maxing.

But the more I consider it, the more concerned I'm becoming with characters starting with two 8's and two 18's. A +/- 5 swing means quite a lot in this edition. How much of an effect will that actually have on low-level play?


Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
j b 200 wrote:
It's also something you would only do at 1st level, since there are lots of free stat boosts at you level up. Adding in the fact that you can go from 16 to 18, but only 18 to 19, it really only benefits you at low level.

Technically, it also benefits between levels 10-14 and again level 20 (assuming you continue taking boosts in that stat at every opportunity).

Another kind of interesting option I haven't seen anyone mention is "dumping" your ancestry-boosted stat by from 12 to 8, then getting one of the level 14 stat boost items to bring it up from 8 to 18.

As a testament to PF2's constrained stat ranges, that in no way seems unbalanced or exploitative, since you're basically trading out the last +2 you'd otherwise likely choose to take in the maximized ability score anyway, but it would result in a slightly better stat array (than not dumping and using the ability score item on your primary stat).


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Lunatic Barghest wrote:
j b 200 wrote:
It's also something you would only do at 1st level, since there are lots of free stat boosts at you level up. Adding in the fact that you can go from 16 to 18, but only 18 to 19, it really only benefits you at low level.

This is a good point that I hadn't fully considered. The diminishing return at higher than 18 will do a good deal to curb high-level min/maxing.

But the more I consider it, the more concerned I'm becoming with characters starting with two 8's and two 18's. A +/- 5 swing means quite a lot in this edition. How much of an effect will that actually have on low-level play?

It's impossible to have two 18's, you can only get one 18 and one 16, or three 16 if you give up the 18.

Anyway, the most optimal arrays in the rules are (18,16,14,12,10,8) and (18,14,14,14,10,8) while not being human, with the latter being better only at lvl 10-14 and lvl 20.

Humans however get benefits from the system because they make one 12 from (18,16,12,12,10,10) become a 14 (18,16,14,12,8,8) and 14 is a magical number because it can become a 20 at lvl 20.


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How could you get a double 18? In each step you can only increase a given stat once (except in the ancestry step with an attribute you have a flaw in). In the class step you only have one stat increase, so you can increase your most important stat 4 times and your 2nd most important stat 3 times.


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Lunatic Barghest wrote:
j b 200 wrote:
It's also something you would only do at 1st level, since there are lots of free stat boosts at you level up. Adding in the fact that you can go from 16 to 18, but only 18 to 19, it really only benefits you at low level.

This is a good point that I hadn't fully considered. The diminishing return at higher than 18 will do a good deal to curb high-level min/maxing.

But the more I consider it, the more concerned I'm becoming with characters starting with two 8's and two 18's. A +/- 5 swing means quite a lot in this edition. How much of an effect will that actually have on low-level play?

You still can't get two 18s. For most this is going to be a +2 boost to your second most important stat at the cost of two -2 penalties to your 5th and 6th most important stat. If you have an ancestral flaw however this lets you get an 18 in that stat (as your one and only 18) for the cost of two -2 penalties in your 5th and 6th most important stat.

Examples: Big Dumb Half-Orc Barbarian
Playtest Rules
Str 18 Dex 14 Con 14 Int 10 Wis 12 Cha 10

PF2 Rules
Str 18 Dex 14 Con 16 Int 8 Wis 12 Cha 8

But for someone playing against ancestry type it makes the character concept viable at a cost

Example: Small Dumb Halfling Barbarian
Playtest Rules
Str 16 Dex 14 Con 14 Int 10 Wis 14 Cha 10

PF2 Rules
Str 18 Dex 14 Con 14 Int 8 Wis 14 Cha 8


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Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Bardarok wrote:
But for someone playing against ancestry type it makes the character concept viable at a cost

I've been wondering how viable a 16 main stat is going to be in Pathfinder 2. Its viable in 1st edition, but ever since the playtest information was revealed 18 mainstat has been presented as the end all be all, especially how tight the math was in the playtest. Which they've loosened up, supposedly.


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber
Bardarok wrote:

But for someone playing against ancestry type it makes the character concept viable at a cost

Example: Small Dumb Halfling Barbarian
Playtest Rules
Str 16 Dex 14 Con 14 Int 10 Wis 14 Cha 10

PF2 Rules
Str 18 Dex 14 Con 14 Int 8 Wis 14 Cha 8

I think you may have miscalculated on the PF2 Halfling Barbarian. Unless I'm missing something. But you should only be able to get up to a 16, since the Halfling has a built-in Str flaw. So -Str and then +Str at each stage (x4) = 16. Like this:

A: Str 10 Dex 12 Con 12 Int 8 Wis 12 Cha 8
B: Str 12 Dex 12 Con 14 Int 8 Wis 12 Cha 8
C: Str 14 Dex 12 Con 14 Int 8 Wis 12 Cha 8
D: Str 16 Dex 14 Con 16 Int 8 Wis 14 Cha 8

Since you can't apply 2 boosts to the same stat in the same step, there's no way to get to 18, right?


Ah, I see. I misunderstood the rule and thought you could gain another boost to an attribute sans the flaw at the ancestry step. I think the misunderstanding was based around the word "fixed".

My apologies for the slip-up.

In that case, it doesn't seem like it would make a major difference from a min/max perspective. Even with the tighter math, "stat dumping" would be fairly difficult, in theory.

Besides, those interested in min/maxing will find ways to do it, unless item bonuses and ability boosts are removed/more restrictive. I don't know if it'll be as much of a problem in PF2 as it was in Pathfinder.

Liberty's Edge

tqomins wrote:
Bardarok wrote:

But for someone playing against ancestry type it makes the character concept viable at a cost

Example: Small Dumb Halfling Barbarian
Playtest Rules
Str 16 Dex 14 Con 14 Int 10 Wis 14 Cha 10

PF2 Rules
Str 18 Dex 14 Con 14 Int 8 Wis 14 Cha 8

Wait ... walk me through that PF2 Halfling Barbarian? I think you may have miscalculated, unless I'm missing something. Because the Halfling has a Strength flaw built-in, you can only get up to 16, right? — 1 flaw + 4 boosts, one for each stage. Like this:

ANCESTRY: +Dex, +Wis, +FREE (x2); -Str, -FREE (x2)
Str 10 Dex 12 Con 12 Int 8 Wis 12 Cha 8

BACKGROUND: +FREE, +FREE
Str 12 Dex 12 Con 14 Int 8 Wis 12 Cha 8

CLASS: +Str
Str 14 Dex 12 Con 14 Int 8 Wis 12 Cha 8

FINISHING TOUCHES: +FREE (x4)
Str 16 Dex 14 Con 16 Int 8 Wis 14 Cha 8

You can put both 'free' bonuses from Ancestry into a penalty stat like Str (and only into a penalty stat), so that first step should have Str 12 and Con 10, which allows Str 18 and Con 14 by following the remaining steps.


I think a better way to state it is when you are done with the ancestry step you can't have above a 12 or below an 8. Since as described you can put two free boosts in the same stat iff it also has an ancestral flaw and similarly you can put two flaws in the same stat iff it has an ancestral boost. In fact when they went through the Gnome barbarian example they did just that boosting Str up to 12 and Cha down to 8 at the ancestry step.


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber
Deadmanwalking wrote:
You can put both 'free' bonuses from Ancestry into a penalty stat like Str (and only into a penalty stat), so that first step should have Str 12 and Con 10, which allows Str 18 and Con 14 by following the remaining steps.

Hmm. I must have missed something. I thought the only exception to "no two boosts/flaws to the same stat" background rule was that you can apply both additional flaws to one score with a fixed boost from ancestry.

EDIT: Jason mentions this in passing here

Liberty's Edge

Bardarok wrote:
They way it was described in the video I think a better way to state it is when you are done with the ancestry step you can't have above a 12 or below an 8. Since as described you can put two free boosts in the same stat iff it also has an ancestral flaw and similarly you can put two flaws in the same stat iff it has an ancestral boost. In fact when they went through the Gnome barbarian example they did just that boosting Str up to 12 and Cha down to 8 at the ancestry step.

That's correct from what we've seen, yes.

tqomins wrote:
Hmm. I must have missed something. I thought the only exception to "no two boosts/flaws to the same stat" background rule was that you can apply both additional flaws to one score with a fixed boost from ancestry.

You can also do the reverse (adding both boosts to a score with a fixed flaw).


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber
tqomins wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:
You can put both 'free' bonuses from Ancestry into a penalty stat like Str (and only into a penalty stat), so that first step should have Str 12 and Con 10, which allows Str 18 and Con 14 by following the remaining steps.

Hmm. I must have missed something. I thought the only exception to "no two boosts/flaws to the same stat" background rule was that you can apply both additional flaws to one score with a fixed boost from ancestry.

EDIT: Jason mentions this in passing here

And here. I wonder what the rules text is for this one


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I thought the OP was clear:

Blave wrote:

As revealed during the Know Direction Podcast, you can choose to get two additional flaws during character creation.

These flaws must be in different ability scores UNLESS you pick a score that's boosted by your ancestry. So you could play a sickly Dwarf with Con 8.

For these additional flaws, you get an extra boost which can be placed in any ability score that doesn't already get a fixed boost from your ancestry, including the one getting the basic flaw. So you can have a level 1 gnome with strength 18 by placing your free boost and the extra boost into strength.

So you could create a Dwarf Bard with 18 Cha and 8 Wis.

Dark Archive

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber
WatersLethe wrote:
Voss wrote:
Besides, this is 'every +1 matters' edition so, clearly, every -1 does too. Saddling the rest of the party with someone who's going to penalizing them with 2 (or even 3!) sets of rolls at -1 is pretty poor form. Why are they bringing this one along into life or death struggles?

I encourage everyone to read this paragraph of Voss' post once again.

When I was arguing for some mechanical benefit to offset the cost of opting to reduce an ability score, I was told ad nauseum that if it's for roleplay purposes I should just be satisfied with the built in rules to voluntarily take a penalty with no recompense. I was told that no one would reasonably complain about inflicting a no-benefit, RP only, handicap on the party.

hmmmm.

The "Every +1 Matters" mentality has an implicit "in things you expect to be doing and be good at" rider attached. The stats you dump are by definition not things you're expecting to succeed at. Yes, that -1 to CHA will hamper you in the case that you're forced to attempt diplomacy, but your chances of success were already low to begin with


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber
PossibleCabbage wrote:
I thought the OP was clear

Sure, OP was clear. I got turned around from my recollection the stream, not from the post.

On the stream Jason spent time talking about how, as an exception to the normal rule, you can double-stack flaws on a fixed ancestry boost—but he didn't really explain the converse, just mentioned it in passing.

So I remembered the first but not the second. /shrug

Folks corrected me quick enough, and I found the relevant parts of the video to confirm. So it's not worth continuing the detour.

Shadow Lodge

tqomins wrote:
I wonder what the rules text is for this one

probably something along the lines of "You can't place a boost on an ability at 12 and you can't place a flaw on an ability at 8"


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RicoTheBold wrote:
j b 200 wrote:
It's also something you would only do at 1st level, since there are lots of free stat boosts at you level up. Adding in the fact that you can go from 16 to 18, but only 18 to 19, it really only benefits you at low level.

Technically, it also benefits between levels 10-14 and again level 20 (assuming you continue taking boosts in that stat at every opportunity).

Another kind of interesting option I haven't seen anyone mention is "dumping" your ancestry-boosted stat by from 12 to 8, then getting one of the level 14 stat boost items to bring it up from 8 to 18.

As a testament to PF2's constrained stat ranges, that in no way seems unbalanced or exploitative, since you're basically trading out the last +2 you'd otherwise likely choose to take in the maximized ability score anyway, but it would result in a slightly better stat array (than not dumping and using the ability score item on your primary stat).

Not only is that not exploitative, I think it's probably pretty sub-optimal use of a stat item. You're going to be stuck with that 8 until you get the item, which shouldn't happen until around level 14. And I think if you boost that stat after you get the item, it doesn't improve over 18, the base just goes to 10 while the item still increases it to 18. So overall, if you need that stat to be good, you're going to be going most of your adventuring life hampered. And if you didn't need it to be high, the 18 isn't going to have the biggest effect either. And because of the Potent trait, it prevents you from using an item to get +2 to the stat that is most important to you.

Although from a roleplaying perspective, I could see it being popular for someone sensitive about their bad stat. The 8 int paladin, Sir Derpy the Dim might want to ditch that unflattering byname. So suddenly going from an 8 int to 18 and becoming a genius would be attractive to him. I guess this could open some late-game multiclassing based concepts. But again, hardly exploitative.


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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Doktor Weasel wrote:


Not only is that not exploitative, I think it's probably pretty sub-optimal use of a stat item. You're going to be stuck with that 8 until you get the item, which shouldn't happen until around level 14. And I think if you boost that stat after you get the item, it doesn't improve over 18, the base just goes to 10 while the item still increases it to 18. So overall, if you need that stat to be good, you're going to be going most of your adventuring life hampered. And if you didn't need it to be high, the 18 isn't going to have the biggest effect either. And because of the Potent trait, it prevents you from using an item to get +2 to the stat that is most important to you.

Do we know/suspect that the Potent items are staying at level 14? I have no feeling one way or other. When the time comes, I imagine I'll be torn between raising my gnome Animal Order Druid's Strength from 8 to 18, or boosting his Wisdom, and I think at the moment I'd be leaning towards the Strength.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
First World Bard wrote:
Doktor Weasel wrote:


Not only is that not exploitative, I think it's probably pretty sub-optimal use of a stat item. You're going to be stuck with that 8 until you get the item, which shouldn't happen until around level 14. And I think if you boost that stat after you get the item, it doesn't improve over 18, the base just goes to 10 while the item still increases it to 18. So overall, if you need that stat to be good, you're going to be going most of your adventuring life hampered. And if you didn't need it to be high, the 18 isn't going to have the biggest effect either. And because of the Potent trait, it prevents you from using an item to get +2 to the stat that is most important to you.
Do we know/suspect that the Potent items are staying at level 14? I have no feeling one way or other. When the time comes, I imagine I'll be torn between raising my gnome Animal Order Druid's Strength from 8 to 18, or boosting his Wisdom, and I think at the moment I'd be leaning towards the Strength.

We suspect. I mean, if they move them earlier, then they're not going to keep the ability to bump a stat up to 18.


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An interesting thing that might not be considered yet is that the change to proficiency diminishes the need for an 18. A fighter, for example, will be getting +4 to hit/ +6 to damage over the playtest, and therefore that additional +1 won't make as much of an impact on those two numbers.

Liberty's Edge

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Cyouni wrote:
An interesting thing that might not be considered yet is that the change to proficiency diminishes the need for an 18. A fighter, for example, will be getting +4 to hit/ +6 to damage over the playtest, and therefore that additional +1 won't make as much of an impact on those two numbers.

This is pretty much only true for Fighters (at least at low levels), and only somewhat. Weapon bonuses to attack and damage have gone down significantly, with the increased personal capabilities countering that reduction. Which is cool, but from a math perspective it means that only those who hit Legendary (for a total of +3 to hit over the playtest...well, +5, but all ACs got +2 from Trained changing) are actually winding up with a net to-hit advantage over the playtest.

People other than Fighters may hit Legendary in weapons now, and this is true at higher levels if so, but only Fighters meaningfully get much in the way of increased accuracy at low levels.


Cyouni wrote:
An interesting thing that might not be considered yet is that the change to proficiency diminishes the need for an 18. A fighter, for example, will be getting +4 to hit/ +6 to damage over the playtest, and therefore that additional +1 won't make as much of an impact on those two numbers.

Every plus is going to matter in terms of hitting and critting because of the penalties for secondary and ternary attacks. That 18 make your first attack more likely to crit and those other to hit at all. Then you might have to start adding other penalties like too close volley, making a non-lethal attack, cover, screening, ect and that 18 starts looking more and more important.


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Kinda worried that the system is really going for the "YOUR MAIN STAT MUST BE 18 OR YOU SUCK". I can see how a 18STR Halfling would be funny, but I kinda liked how each Race had to play differently to account for their different stats spread. Now pretty much everyone can have any spread and you'll really be pushed towards that 18.

It was smart to make it so TWO stats have to be dumped. This way you can't just dump useless Charisma on everyone and have to hit something of more value. Only Wizards really seem to get the "free" dump STR/CHA every time.

Expecting to see a lot of 8 CHA in the coming years (again).


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
ChibiNyan wrote:

Kinda worried that the system is really going for the "YOUR MAIN STAT MUST BE 18 OR YOU SUCK". I can see how a 18STR Halfling would be funny, but I kinda liked how each Race had to play differently to account for their different stats spread. Now pretty much everyone can have any spread and you'll really be pushed towards that 18.

It was smart to make it so TWO stats have to be dumped. This way you can't just dump useless Charisma on everyone and have to hit something of more value. Only Wizards really seem to get the "free" dump STR/CHA every time.

Expecting to see a lot of 8 CHA in the coming years (again).

Given that they are fine with Fighters having +2 over all other martials (and +4 over most everyone else) for almost their entire career I think it is safe to say having a 16 in your main stats won't be that bad.

This is disregarding all the times you won't actually care about your main stat. My friends Buff and Battle Sorcerer didn't care at all about Cha because none of his spells used it.


One interesting fact is that starting with 16 gives less bonus than the 18 only 50% of the time. The 16 will give the same bonus than the 18 at lvls 5-9 and 15-19 with the ability score increase.


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Also keep in mind that a 16 is pretty close.

As soon as you get a stat bump it will be functionally the same as an 18, the next it will fall behind, then catch up the next, etc.

If there is one stat that you use for everything on that character, you should probably have an 18.

If there are two stats you depend on, you should consider an 18 in one.

If there are three stats you want to make use of, you should probably plan to get multiple 16s instead. You shouldn't be that far behind, and depending on level/stat boost items, you may be just as good in all three as the guy who had one 18 to start.

I wouldn't recommend 14s though.


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ChibiNyan wrote:
Kinda worried that the system is really going for the "YOUR MAIN STAT MUST BE 18 OR YOU SUCK".

I don't think that's the case: you can make a fine character that ends up with a 10 in their main stat if you build for it. People with weapons tough as going to want a fairly high score: though they might be more well rounded with a high score in both attack stats [str and dex] vs max in one.

You just have to remember that pluses matter. For instance, a halfling hits as well on later attack [vs a 18] by going 16 dex and using a finesse/agile weapon. Or he can focus on abilities that don't use multiple attacks for MAPs, meaning you don't need to factor in those minuses.


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I feel like the primary value of "starting with an 18" is just the psychological value of knowing that you are doing as much as you can to be good at what you're supposed to be good at.

With some ancestry/class combinations previously barred from starting with a 18, you run the risk of people thinking "maybe I should have picked something other than Dwarf for my Bard" for example.


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From what we've seen of PF2 monsters (from the bestiary previews) starting with 14 in str, for example, is viable. Prehaps not *optimal* but your character will function fine


Personally, I suspect (emphasis suspect) that blowing up your main attribute for your class will matter more when you're playing with serious optimizers. The 14 v 18 is going to matter more when comparing it with the rest of your party than it will when comparing with monsters and npcs.

So, at least in part, the "mandatory 1st-level 18" will be self-fulfilling by the community.


lakobie wrote:
From what we've seen of PF2 monsters (from the bestiary previews) starting with 14 in str, for example, is viable. Prehaps not *optimal* but your character will function fine

Are they viable for second attacks? Third? I haven't seen any PF2 monsters so I curious what the numbers look like.

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