Is Harmonize supposed to be so limited?


Rules Discussion


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Normally, a composition ends if you cast another composition, and you can only cast one composition per turn.

The Harmonize bard feat removes some of these restrictions. A harmonized composition does not end if you cast a non-harmonized composition, and casting a harmonized composition does not prevent you from casting another composition in the same turn.

That sounds great, but there are still enough restrictions that I cannot find any way to effectively use this ability with Lingering Composition.

Even though casting a non-harmonized composition does not end a harmonized composition, the opposite is not true. The Harmonize feat does not prevent a harmonized composition from ending a non-harmonized one. So, if you use Lingering Composition to cast a composition in round 1 that will last a few rounds, and in round 2 you cast a harmonized composition, your composition from round 1 immediately ends.

So, you might think that to use Lingering Composition and Harmonize together, you just need to use both on the same composition. But you cannot, because both of those actions require that your next action is to cast a composition.

As far as I can tell, the only thing Harmonize can be used for is to spend three actions to cast two compositions, with no ability to use Lingering Composition to save on actions. It seems very strange that the maestro-specific bard feat that says "You can perform multiple compositions simultaneously" is not usable with the maestro-specific bard feat that helps you with action economy while maintaining compositions. Is Harmonize really this restrictive, or am I missing something?


IIRC, that was the case in playtest as well, so if they kept it in the game they probably intended it.


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One is also a limited use resource meant to save you on action economy, the other is an action you can spend to get the benefits of two extremely powerful cantrips at once. The first is for nova, the second is for when you need can't spend slots or focus.


I think what you can do is this:

Round 1: Cast Harmonized composition, followed by a Lingering Composition.

Round 2: Harmonized composition ends, Lingering Composition continues, you can't cast any new compositions. Use your actions for something else.

Round 3+: Same, until Lingering Composition runs out.

So it lets you double buff that first round and set up a lingering buff, at the cost of all three actions. Is that worth a feat and the action cost? Not to everyone, certainly. I'd definitely think about retraining into before picking up Symphony of the Muse at level 20, though, for a full campaign that goes that far. Symphony of the Muse, plus Eternal Composition and some stacked Lingering Compositions can let you set up quite a few buffs early.


I beg to differ. "Casting another harmonized composition end any ->harmonized<- composition you have in effect". "Harmonized composition" is not "composition".
Last point but not the least, Harmonize feat describes the ability to cast a second composition as a harmonized one. The wording make the order precisely clear, which means that the ruling of the feat would tell you as an example to cast a classic composition, then stop it with your harmonized composition... Nonsense.

As I see it :
- 1st round, you do lingering + harmonized (or harmonized+lingering)
- 2nd & 3rd round, you can harmonize again and have 1 action left for whatever.


Nah.


Then which precise part of the rules makes you think that way ? Stated facts or "nah" doesn't help to understand...


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It's been covered in other threads, and it's obvious from reading the rules carefully. I don't have the time or energy to do it again, I just don't want to have misinformation spread without it being countered.


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Truffor wrote:
Then which precise part of the rules makes you think that way ? Stated facts or "nah" doesn't help to understand...

Ok, I have a little time.

Composition box, CRB 99 wrote:
You can cast only one composition spell each turn, and you can have only one active at a time. If you cast a new composition spell, any ongoing effects from your previous composition spell end immediately.
Harmonize feat, CRB 101 wrote:
You can perform multiple compositions simultaneously. If your next action is to cast a composition, it becomes a harmonized composition. Unlike a normal composition, a harmonized composition doesn’t end if you cast another composition, and you can cast another composition on the same turn as a harmonized one. Casting another harmonized composition ends any harmonized composition you have in effect.
Lingering Composition focus spell, CRB 387 wrote:
You add a flourish to your composition to extend its benefits. If your next action is to cast a cantrip composition with a duration of 1 round, attempt a Performance check.

You can't cast Harmonize -> Lingering Composition -> Cantrip, nor Lingering Composition -> Harmonize -> Cantrip, because both Harmonize and Lingering Composition require that the next action be the composition cantrip they are to effect. You can only apply one. So either you have a Harmonized cantrip which isn't ended by another cantrip, but does expire after one round, or you have a Lingering cantrip that lasts but ends if you cast another cantrip, including a Harmonized one.


Stacking multiple metamagic-like abilities on the same spell/composition is impossible, rules are pretty clear about that, we are okay. That's just not what I'm implying or asking about.

The only blurry point is why a "harmonized" composition would stop a "normal" composition. It's nowhere written

That CRB99 line describes "normal" composition composition casting (states 1 max) and what happens to your previous "normal" composition. At that point "harmonized" composition do not exist if you do not take Harmonize, there's nothing more to know about it.
CRB101 add a new class of compositions, tells you things that aren't possible in CRB99 and even states black on white what happens at that time : "Casting another harmonized composition ends any harmonized composition you have in effect".
I read it as it come :
CRB99 normal compositions ends normal compositions
CRB101 harmonized compositions ends harmonized compositions, which may look dumb as hell as you can't make a harmonized composition longer than 1 round. Is it a CRB mistake ? Or is it to say it ends that and NOT non harmonized compositions ?

No, rules do not make things easy here. Mixing uncorrelated do not help too and I'm still unconvinced. It has not-so-much been covered in other threads and not by a lot different people, I too don't want misinformation crystallize over the misinterpretation of few lads. No wonder that feat is horrendous playing it "your" way.

Sincerely.


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Harmonized Composition are Compositions. They end both "normal" (which doesn't exist in the rules) and Harmonized Compositions.


Dude. Still (by pretty far) not convinced. Harmonized composition are Compositions right? So Casting Compositions end Harmonized Compositions !
See, you can't make CRB99 work with CRB101 like that (or work your way out like this) because CRB101 rewrites that, it's new.
CRB101 says "Casting another harmonized composition ends any harmonized composition you have in effect", not "Casting another harmonized composition ends any harmonized composition you have in effect too" nor "Casting another harmonized composition also ends any harmonized composition you have in effect".
It's not because it's still composition that it behaves like in CRB99.


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It’s ok that you’re not capable of understanding this, some of the rules are written at an inconsistent grade level and some are irreducibly complex even with help. Not everyone can get it, it’s probably enough for you to accept that others who do get it aren’t crazy when they rule otherwise. If you’re the GM I don’t see a huge problem in house ruling Harmonize to be more effective than the published rules.


Truffor wrote:

Stacking multiple metamagic-like abilities on the same spell/composition is impossible, rules are pretty clear about that, we are okay. That's just not what I'm implying or asking about.

The only blurry point is why a "harmonized" composition would stop a "normal" composition. It's nowhere written

That CRB99 line describes "normal" composition composition casting (states 1 max) and what happens to your previous "normal" composition. At that point "harmonized" composition do not exist if you do not take Harmonize, there's nothing more to know about it.
CRB101 add a new class of compositions, tells you things that aren't possible in CRB99 and even states black on white what happens at that time : "Casting another harmonized composition ends any harmonized composition you have in effect".
I read it as it come :
CRB99 normal compositions ends normal compositions
CRB101 harmonized compositions ends harmonized compositions, which may look dumb as hell as you can't make a harmonized composition longer than 1 round. Is it a CRB mistake ? Or is it to say it ends that and NOT non harmonized compositions ?

No, rules do not make things easy here. Mixing uncorrelated do not help too and I'm still unconvinced. It has not-so-much been covered in other threads and not by a lot different people, I too don't want misinformation crystallize over the misinterpretation of few lads. No wonder that feat is horrendous playing it "your" way.

Sincerely.

The feat is Infact horrendous, as I stated in an older thread, Xeno is right about how it works. I decided to pass on this feat for that very reason.

https://paizo.com/threads/rzs42pmz?Harmonize#1


Xenocrat wrote:
It’s ok that you’re not capable of understanding this, some of the rules are written at an inconsistent grade level and some are irreducibly complex even with help. Not everyone can get it, it’s probably enough for you to accept that others who do get it aren’t crazy when they rule otherwise. If you’re the GM I don’t see a huge problem in house ruling Harmonize to be more effective than the published rules.

More "broken as hell" than "more effective" ;)


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Except Lingering Comp is a free action, so you can Harmonize (actual action) -> Lingering (free action, not an actual action) -> cast a Composition. Would a Lingering get canceled if you Harmonize the next round? Because that seems like a dubious outcome to me, I don't see why all the fret, since you can still Lingering -> comp -> Harmo -> comp, since (again) Lingering is a free action, so even if you can't stack them both up, you can pull them off on the same turn, and I also take the wording that continued Harmos don't kill the Lingering since they word it as "Harmos kill other Harmos" not "Harmos kill everything". Cest la vie though, your GM can rule however they want since RAI is also a thing that Jason has said is good to keep in mind when rules look janky


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I can see that reading comprehension is harder for some people, but I shall exercise the wisdom to accept the things I cannot change.


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nick1wasd wrote:
free action, not an actual action

Literally has action in the name. Descriptions of free actions are under the "actions" section in the rulebook.

Quote:
and I also take the wording that continued Harmos don't kill the Lingering since they word it as "Harmos kill other Harmos" not "Harmos kill everything"

Compositions ending existing compositions is the general rule.

Harmonize modifies that general rule by saying that you can cast a regular composition after a Harmonized one and the Harmonized composition doesn't stop, as long as that second composition isn't also Harmonized.

Harmonize is silent on the reverse interaction, casting a Harmonized composition after a normal one, so we default to the general rule.


Squiggit wrote:
nick1wasd wrote:
free action, not an actual action

Literally has action in the name. Descriptions of free actions are under the "actions" section in the rulebook.

While I do understand the point here. Is this system that tight on rules that if something says next action and you take a free action we know it to mean you lose the effect? I haven't gone digging through every class looking for things like Harmonize to compare to the list of free actions that might intervene but it seems like this might be a bit restrictive.


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Talonhawke wrote:
Squiggit wrote:
nick1wasd wrote:
free action, not an actual action

Literally has action in the name. Descriptions of free actions are under the "actions" section in the rulebook.

While I do understand the point here. Is this system that tight on rules that if something says next action and you take a free action we know it to mean you lose the effect? I haven't gone digging through every class looking for things like Harmonize to compare to the list of free actions that might intervene but it seems like this might be a bit restrictive.

That it might be a bit restrictive is your point, but everything else stated is clear.

- free actions are actions ( Rules )
- If you Plan to use an action which empowers your compositions, then your next action must be a composition, or your focus point will be lost.

They could have used "you must use a composition after it" instead of "if your next action is a composition, then...", but it wouldn't have changed a thing.


A free action is a free action - it doesn't count against your limit of three actions per turn, but is otherwise an action.

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