Did wizards get nerfed?


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion

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Sovereign Court

Thievery can be so stealthy that you can literally steal someone armor right next to them...I'm not even kidding with feats like legendary thief combine that with rogue sneaky class feats. (*has skyrim flashbacks*)

But yeah, all martials got some supernatural bump and anybody who chooses to master a skill end up doing supernatural things anyway with their skill feats of choice. Like legendary survivalist, let you survive anywhere without food, water indefinitely, while living in extreme/severe heat or cold without taking any damage.

Anyway, just a side comment.


WHW wrote:
Is there something preventing Quicksilver Mutagen from affecting Rays and other Ranged Spell Attacks? It seems like Alchemist multiclass for mutagens is really good if it works.

Those are spell attack rolls rather than ranged attack rolls, so it wouldn't help.

Dark Archive

Lord Fyre wrote:
Nox Aeterna wrote:

Well, guess that is that for 2E and now PF1 wont get new books either...

Oh well.

Don't panic yet. A lot of 3rd Party publishers are likely to continue supporting PF1 for a bit.

That is unlikely to last long. If sales of 3rd party PF1 books even *look* to be cutting into the PF2 market, those licenses will get pulled.

Paizo: Nothing personal, it's just business.


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Translucent Wolf wrote:
Lord Fyre wrote:
Nox Aeterna wrote:

Well, guess that is that for 2E and now PF1 wont get new books either...

Oh well.

Don't panic yet. A lot of 3rd Party publishers are likely to continue supporting PF1 for a bit.

That is unlikely to last long. If sales of 3rd party PF1 books even *look* to be cutting into the PF2 market, those licenses will get pulled.

Paizo: Nothing personal, it's just business.

OGL, how does it work

Dark Archive

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Xenocrat wrote:
Translucent Wolf wrote:
Lord Fyre wrote:
Nox Aeterna wrote:

Well, guess that is that for 2E and now PF1 wont get new books either...

Oh well.

Don't panic yet. A lot of 3rd Party publishers are likely to continue supporting PF1 for a bit.

That is unlikely to last long. If sales of 3rd party PF1 books even *look* to be cutting into the PF2 market, those licenses will get pulled.

Paizo: Nothing personal, it's just business.

OGL, how does it work

And it goes a little something like this: https://paizo.com/pathfinder/compatibility/first

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Silver Crusade

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Just gonna completely ignore the rapport Paizo has had with 3pp since forever?

Dark Archive

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Rysky wrote:
Just gonna completely ignore the rapport Paizo has had with 3pp since forever?

Only if it means more income?

I hope that we continue to see additional quality 3rd party content. But, really, when was the last time you saw any new 3rd party content for DnD 3.5? Mongoose Publishing... I weep for the loss of your wise words, in these dark times.

Silver Crusade

Again, I direct you the wealth of 3pp products that have existed for all of 1e's run, that Paizo staff themselves have directed people to (such as Psionics).


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Translucent Wolf wrote:
Xenocrat wrote:
Translucent Wolf wrote:
Lord Fyre wrote:
Nox Aeterna wrote:

Well, guess that is that for 2E and now PF1 wont get new books either...

Oh well.

Don't panic yet. A lot of 3rd Party publishers are likely to continue supporting PF1 for a bit.

That is unlikely to last long. If sales of 3rd party PF1 books even *look* to be cutting into the PF2 market, those licenses will get pulled.

Paizo: Nothing personal, it's just business.

OGL, how does it work

And it goes a little something like this: https://paizo.com/pathfinder/compatibility/first

Yeah, you don't understand how any of this works. Paizo is limited in how much it can change its own license because it's own rules are an outgrowth of the 3.5 OGL. They can't stop 3pp PF1 compatible rules witbeing published, just some marketing stuff and logo allowances. Which isn't going to stop the PF1 grognards from finding and buying it.

Dark Archive

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Rysky wrote:
Again, I direct you the wealth of 3pp products that have existed for all of 1e's run, that Paizo staff themselves have directed people to (such as Psionics).

And the 2nd edition compatibility license is already available. I would, however, suggest you look at how well Dreamscarred Press has been supporting Starfinder before pointing to Psionics as a model to follow :)

Silver Crusade

Translucent Wolf wrote:
I hope that we continue to see additional quality 3rd party content. But, really, when was the last time you saw any new 3rd party content for DnD 3.5? Mongoose Publishing... I weep for the loss of your wise words, in these dark times.

Since Pathfinder was built directly on 3.5's chassis (affectionally called 3.75) there was no reason to make 3pp for 3.5

Silver Crusade

Translucent Wolf wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Again, I direct you the wealth of 3pp products that have existed for all of 1e's run, that Paizo staff themselves have directed people to (such as Psionics).
And the 2nd edition compatibility license is already available. I would, however, suggest you look at how well Dreamscarred Press has been supporting Starfinder before pointing to Psionics as a model to follow :)

Uh yeah, they just had a massive KS to bring Psionics to Starfinder.

If you're referring to the delays, eh. Those come with KS.

Dark Archive

Xenocrat wrote:


Yeah, you don't understand how any of this works. Paizo is limited in how much it can change its own license because it's own rules are an outgrowth of the 3.5 OGL. They can't stop 3pp PF1 compatible rules with being published, just some marketing stuff and logo allowances. Which isn't going to stop the PF1 grognards from finding and buying it.

I hope you're right. But if not, PF1 will live on, just as all previous editions have. GMs who prefer to use it will write new stories for their own tables. Long Live DnD 3.75.

Dark Archive

Rysky wrote:
Translucent Wolf wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Again, I direct you the wealth of 3pp products that have existed for all of 1e's run, that Paizo staff themselves have directed people to (such as Psionics).
And the 2nd edition compatibility license is already available. I would, however, suggest you look at how well Dreamscarred Press has been supporting Starfinder before pointing to Psionics as a model to follow :)

Uh yeah, they just had a massive KS to bring Psionics to Starfinder.

If you're referring to the delays, eh. Those come with KS.

I feel that your google fu may have failed you there.

The book was supposed to ship last year. The writer ( down to 1 guy ) stated this year ( in May ) that he was still working on it, and super confident that it would still ship. When it got finished. Honest.

Silver Crusade

Translucent Wolf wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Translucent Wolf wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Again, I direct you the wealth of 3pp products that have existed for all of 1e's run, that Paizo staff themselves have directed people to (such as Psionics).
And the 2nd edition compatibility license is already available. I would, however, suggest you look at how well Dreamscarred Press has been supporting Starfinder before pointing to Psionics as a model to follow :)

Uh yeah, they just had a massive KS to bring Psionics to Starfinder.

If you're referring to the delays, eh. Those come with KS.

I feel that your google fu may have failed you there.

The book was supposed to ship last year. The writer ( down to 1 guy ) stated this year ( in May ) that he was still working on it, and super confident that it would still ship. When it got finished. Honest.

Uh, the KS was only launched in March of last year.

And yes I did read the updates, he's dealing with health issues but was giving an actual update such as concept art.

Dark Archive

Rysky wrote:

Uh, the KS was only launched in March of last year.

And yes I did read the updates, he's dealing with health issues but was giving an actual update such as concept art.

Let me put it another way. The book was to ship in Nov 2018.

In May 2019 ( 6 months past ship date ), an update was posted stating:

"I have taken this week off from work and I will be focusing on getting another major update out. This will include both content from the books, as well as project information. Whatever is ready will be released to you so you can see progress is being made.".

It's now August 2020. No further updates from the developer.

Like I said. Get a better example of system support than Psionics.

Silver Crusade

... you might want to go look a Calendar.

If I had backed this project I definetly wouldn't have believed the original timeframe and would have been pleasantly surprised if it did get through at that time.


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I mean, I took the first survey, then came to the boards, and expressed concerns.

I was shut down at every turn. Especially by the guy with a bag as his avatar (hell if I can remember his name now). Told that wizards deserved the nerf, etc, etc.

Tried fighting back with good arguments, was ignored and borderline flamed, AND the moderators thought I was being inflammatory, whereas that guy kept baiting all over the boards with full impunity.

The result is this. I bought the core rulebook pdf... And that will be it for me. I am very, very disappointed by this edition. And no, I won't keep playing the first edition, because like all older editions, it's just going to keel over and disappear.

So now I have the choice between:

5e or PF2

And they both took the nerf bat to magic to satisfy "martial" players and for the sake of "balance". Seriously? "Balance"? Is this a MMORPG? Or is this a pen and paper RPG?

I mean, I'm glad for you all, I guess it's time for an old coot like me to actually stop playing RPGs altogether, or to switch to a completely different system and actually stop playing a D&D based system, which honestly makes me want to cry.


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Translucent Wolf wrote:


It's now August 2020.

I think your calendar may be about a year fast.

Silver Crusade

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Andarr wrote:
And they both took the nerf bat to magic to satisfy "martial" players and for the sake of "balance". Seriously? "Balance"? Is this a MMORPG? Or is this a pen and paper RPG?

It's cooperative game you play with others to tell a story.


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Rysky wrote:
Andarr wrote:
And they both took the nerf bat to magic to satisfy "martial" players and for the sake of "balance". Seriously? "Balance"? Is this a MMORPG? Or is this a pen and paper RPG?
It's cooperative game you play with others to tell a story.

That has always been the case.

I fail to understand why magic being, well, magic caused people such issues.

I would much rather they had gone the way "Tome of Battle" had gone, instead of nerfing magic.

Silver Crusade

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Andarr wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Andarr wrote:
And they both took the nerf bat to magic to satisfy "martial" players and for the sake of "balance". Seriously? "Balance"? Is this a MMORPG? Or is this a pen and paper RPG?
It's cooperative game you play with others to tell a story.

That has always been the case.

I fail to understand why magic being, well, magic caused people such issues.

I would much rather they had gone the way "Tome of Battle" had gone, instead of nerfing magic.

1 character completely invalidating the rest of the group commonly enough was the issue.

And if you look over the Martial classes they are leaning into a ToB approach.


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Rysky wrote:
Andarr wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Andarr wrote:
And they both took the nerf bat to magic to satisfy "martial" players and for the sake of "balance". Seriously? "Balance"? Is this a MMORPG? Or is this a pen and paper RPG?
It's cooperative game you play with others to tell a story.

That has always been the case.

I fail to understand why magic being, well, magic caused people such issues.

I would much rather they had gone the way "Tome of Battle" had gone, instead of nerfing magic.

1 character completely invalidating the rest of the group commonly enough was the issue.

And if you look over the Martial classes they are leaning into a ToB approach.

I seriously wish people would stop saying things like "the caster invalidated the rest of the party".

That statement is just blatantly false, and comes from either theorycrafting or poor DM'ing. But it was taken at face value and now look at wizards.

I mean... I could have (somehow) swallowed the pill if they had made it so you could use the heightened version of a memorized spell if you used a slot containing another, higher level memorized spell for it.

But you have to memorize it xD

Imagine. I am sure you will see plenty of people memorizing a heightened fireball... Or not. Because with three slots to memorize spells, I am sure you're going to waste one for it.


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Andarr wrote:

I seriously wish people would stop saying things like "the caster invalidated the rest of the party".

That statement is just blatantly false, and comes from either theorycrafting or poor DM'ing. But it was taken at face value and now look at wizards.

I guess I'm a poor GM then: Invisibility makes any character sneak better or at least on par with any rogue. Shape Stone/Wood creates breakthroughs in walls or doors better than any Fighter or Barbarian could ever punch through. Save or Suck spells can end encounters quicker than any martial ever could etc.

So I don't see how the previous statement is false.


Andarr wrote:
And no, I won't keep playing the first edition, because like all older editions, it's just going to keel over and disappear.

That's what's known as a vicious cycle. "Don't feed the wolf," as they say.


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Gratz wrote:
Invisibility makes any character sneak better or at least on par with any rogue.

Kind of. Sound is a thing, Rog can get Invis pretty easily too and is better than Wiz by far if so, at hi levels See Invis is super common on monsters (etc.)

Gratz wrote:
Save or Suck spells can end encounters quicker than any martial ever could etc.

Yes true but it does have to pass the gates of Save, Spell Resistance, Immunities, and ofc the caster can't be disrupted. IME this happened but was not the norm and bosses usually had protections.

I've seen just as many times where e.g. a Paladin will crit for like 175 pts of damage and 1-shot a boss, no one ever really said that invalidated the wizard.

Anyway I don't deny caster supremacy happened (although IME CoDZilla was the real problem not Wizards, talking CRB here don't own all splats), but I am leaning on they overnerfed the Wizard in PF2E - will know for sure after some solid game-time with it.


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Did the Wizards (casters really) need nerfing? Yes.

However. Did they overnerf the Wizards/casters? Well, some yes, some no. Raw wizards are definitively overnerfed now.


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I agree that there was caster supremacy that needed to be taken care of. But the problem wasn't that wizards were overpowered, but that most martials just didnt scale to the point magic users did.

And yes, magic could quickly ruin encounters. But save or suck needed optimized saves, and utility spells literally benefit everyone; I feel it's like complaining that people didnt ride your bike, when one of the others has a car.


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mcintma wrote:
Kind of. Sound is a thing, Rog can get Invis pretty easily too and is better than Wiz by far if so, at hi levels See Invis is super common on monsters (etc.)

"Of course, the subject is not magically silenced, and certain other conditions can render the recipient detectable (such as swimming in water or stepping in a puddle). If a check is required, a stationary invisible creature has a +40 bonus on its Stealth checks. This bonus is reduced to +20 if the creature is moving."

This stealth bonus eclipses most rogue builds for a solid number of levels, so yeah the sound part is in most cases negated by this bonus. And rogues getting wands or whatever to get invisibility only illustrates the problem further, in my opinion. You needed to get the caster's tool to keep up, so that does not minimise the discrepancy between martial characters and casters.


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Honestly, from everything that I've seen in this edition there were only a few things that Wizards have lost.

1) Auto-Scaling Damage of spells.
2) Variable Range values that scales up with "Caster Level".
3) Variable Spell Duration that scales up with "Caster Level".

All of these items were intended as a nerf to all casters and not just Wizards.

To address each of those points:

---------
Issue One
---------

The biggest issue that resulted in "Quadratic Wizards" or casters in general was the auto-scaling damage without the need to expend higher level spell slots. This was an intentional nerf and one that I feel was needed to put people onto a more level playing field.

Martial characters were adjusted up in their damage scaling while Casters have been adjusted down through requiring a spell be heightened in order to get maximum potential out of it.

These changes have brought characters much more in line with each other. Spells that are cast at a higher spell level can still easily pull ahead in terms of burst and AoE damage while lower level spells are better used for utility spells.

Cantrips were seriously buffed up to and IMO that provided Casters with a reliable method of constantly using effective spells at enemies in combat.

---------
Issue Two
---------

Range is much easier to calculate by simply specifying a value rather than having touch, short, medium, and long range spells that have a value plus an additional amount per caster level. This very much fits in line with their shift away from the concept of "Caster Level" being its own measurement of power.

-----------
Issue Three
-----------

This was an intentional nerf to promote a more tactical approach to spells. Previously it was all about how many buffs you could put up on yourself at a time while now it's more about using what is important for one or two fights.

The concept of "Pre-Buffing" has mostly been removed though there are still some circumstances where it can be useful. Personally I'm glad for this change.

The only thing I would like to see is more utility spells that have "Until Next Daily Preparation" or "24 Hours" as their duration but that will come with time.

------------------
Final Observations
------------------

There were a couple other niche types of characters that could be considered "nerfed" by the edition change. One of which that was mentioned previously was the Necromancer "Overlord" playstyle.

They definitely made creating and summoning undead much more of an investment of time and resources. I kind of like that they did that.

One of the other changes reduced the amount of direct control that you could assume over your created undead. While this is mostly true it's still possible to direct hordes of undead at your enemies. You're just not controlling all of them in a combat directly. I don't feel that this is a bad change and if it can help streamline combat I'm all for it!

I completely expect them to have resources in the future that goes further in depth into creating and upgrading Undead, Constructs, and other possible minions and I look forward to that.


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Gratz wrote:
mcintma wrote:
Kind of. Sound is a thing, Rog can get Invis pretty easily too and is better than Wiz by far if so, at hi levels See Invis is super common on monsters (etc.)

"Of course, the subject is not magically silenced, and certain other conditions can render the recipient detectable (such as swimming in water or stepping in a puddle). If a check is required, a stationary invisible creature has a +40 bonus on its Stealth checks. This bonus is reduced to +20 if the creature is moving."

This stealth bonus eclipses most rogue builds for a solid number of levels, so yeah the sound part is in most cases negated by this bonus. And rogues getting wands or whatever to get invisibility only illustrates the problem further, in my opinion. You needed to get the caster's tool to keep up, so that does not minimise the discrepancy between martial characters and casters.

Completely agree with you here. The fun bit is when people start casting "Silence" on themselves or their weapon too, or much more likely they just start investing into Stealth. It was incredibly effective and would outstrip a Rogue without even trying.


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All in all, while the overall power of Wizards and other casters has dropped I think that they feel much better to play.

With the way that DC's work now there is no more need to worry about whether or now a low level spell will actually affect a target, and there is no more need to take a series of feats just to help bypass Spell Resistance and raising your DCs.

Finally the ability to have useful Cantrips that will never leave them without offensive magic capabilities it can now feel like you always have something you can throw at an enemy while you keep your other spells for situational buffs or damage such as a difficult enemy or large groups of enemies.


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So, I've tried to read through this whole thread and put together a good thought process.

First off, I am on the side of the nerf being too hard. Magic is, as someone else stated, supposed to be magical. The reason Starfinders Magic system works is because technology can make up for magic. Bob the barbarian shouldn't be able to hit a sword hard enough to make it magical.

Really, this all comes down to this line I've seen repeated over and over: "the wizard/caster made the entire party useless." Here comes the fire. If a single wizard, limited by what you as a GM have provided them, has managed to invalidate your battle/dungeon/campaign, you have failed as a GM. You have no wealth limits as a GM. No monster limits, no alignment limits and so on. Wizards (just using wizards going forward since that's the primary focus, but put your caster of choice in) have very particular weaknesses that can easily be exploited without impeding the other characters too badly.

For instance, if I am an evil doer in the Inner Sea, I'm going to get a scroll or other single use magic item of the most potent form of silence I can get my hands on. I'm setting up wards and otherwise planning. Most of all I'm employing my own Wizard. The bad guys don't have to be stupid or ignore what they see. If I'm the BBGE, and I get a report saying "Sir, our entire camp of orcs was wiped out when a wizard came in and charmed our strongest fighters and summoned a bunch of monsters and wiped us out" "Ok, give all of our people potions of protection from good. Can anyone use a wand? Get them a wand of silence. And make sure everyone knows to kill that dude first."

Somewhere it became the thing to have intelligent beings not fight intelligently. They should use the same tactics the GM would as a player. What is the PCs first target usually? Enemy wizard.

Wizards are SUPPOSED to be the strongest class. They also are supposed to be the class that has the highest (by %) mortality rate at low levels. Think about it. You have to be among the smartest people on earth, survive fighting monsters while wearing robes with a dagger and so on. If it were easy, why would anyone ever pick a different class in world?

So here's what was done in 2E. Wizards were made more durable and stronger at low level, at the cost of power on the upper end. They have more "options" now which basically are removing things they could do before and segmenting them into different things. Summons were nerfed (yup, makes perfect sense that the hellhound I summon will stand there unless I tell it to fight back every round), crafting was nerfed (sorry, modern efficiencies do not apply to a fantasy medieval setting) and so on. Oh, and you don't even need to be very smart to cast spells anymore. Unless I'm missing something, the only differences between a Wizard with a 12 INT and an 18 are DCs and Attack Rolls. In world, there is literally no reason everyone with moderately above average intelligence not to go become a Wizard, get to level 1 or 2 retire.

Why couldn't "being" a wizard have been made harder? Bring back the 4 HP. Heck, give all wizards a "curse" that doesn't have positive effects (I.E. Dragonlance). Rip off the "test" completely. Beef up actual anti-wizard spells (e.g. Anti-Magic Field can now be made permanent, A critical fail on Silence (which got nerfed... even anti-wizard spells got nerfed) strikes the target dumb permanently, etc).

Another thing said in multiple places was "balance above all else." I don't think that's what the priority was, but the symptoms are very similar. I think the actual mission statement of 2E was "Society First." Almost all of the decisions made are things that make society easier to run but they come at the cost of the logic of the game world. Even a time of troubles where magic as a whole was nerfed (for everyone, not just casters) would have made more sense. But instead it seems as though the casters had magic pulled out of them and infused into everyone else.

And that's my main problem. It's not that Wizards were nerfed. It's that they were nerfed in a way that just doesn't make sense. The immersion is lost because the numbers game was deemed more important than the narrative logic.


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I don't think "the presence of one class (or a handful of similar classes) makes a GM's job markedly more difficult" is a thing we should accept as reasonable.

No class is supposed to be the strongest class. No class should have the ability to completely circumvent plots which would have been meatier for parties without that class.

Balancing "this class is powerful" against "this class is hard to play" is a good way to drive people away from that class- we want the wizard to be a class people play. In my personal experience it was a very unpopular class in PF1 since people who knew how to make it work understood how quickly they could break the game and so chose something else, and people who didn't know how to make it work found it unsatisfying to play. Both of these are failure modes we should avoid.


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KapaaIan wrote:
Here comes the fire. If a single wizard, limited by what you as a GM have provided them, has managed to invalidate your battle/dungeon/campaign, you have failed as a GM.

On the other hand, if the GM has to constantly worry about how to effectively mitigate the wizard's power in order to keep the game fun for everyone else, that sounds like a pretty big failure of the system itself.


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One of my favorite examples of "Quadratic Wizard / Linear Fighter" that shows why it's simply not fun to have a party with a high level Wizard in 3.5 / PF1 is a video on YouTube called "Angel Summoner and the BMX Bandit" feel free to look it up if you're interested.

What it comes down to though are two major difficulties.

1) It can be hard to create adventures when you have a high level caster in the party that can simply cast a handful of spells to get to the answer they need and then bypass the challenge entirely.

2) This typically involves the GM going out of their way to raise the difficulty of their campaign to the point where the only ones who can really contribute in a meaningful way are the casters.

That's why the most popular character classes toward the end of PF1 were Full Casters and Hybrids. If anyone was playing something else it was either a Fighter or Barbarian going for the highest damage they can do in a single round or something else played purely as novelty.


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Gloom wrote:
1) It can be hard to create adventures when you have a high level caster in the party that can simply cast a handful of spells to get to the answer they need and then bypass the challenge entirely.

What's especially frustrating is when you plan for the wizard to solve it 2 seconds, and he doesn't so you have to either remind the wizard he can solve it in 2 seconds with a spell he already knows, or you have watch the party stumble around for two sessions.


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Kasoh wrote:
Gloom wrote:
1) It can be hard to create adventures when you have a high level caster in the party that can simply cast a handful of spells to get to the answer they need and then bypass the challenge entirely.
What's especially frustrating is when you plan for the wizard to solve it 2 seconds, and he doesn't so you have to either remind the wizard he can solve it in 2 seconds with a spell he already knows, or you have watch the party stumble around for two sessions.

100% agree with you there. It's really sad to watch sometimes. When you play Rocket Tag there are no winners.


KapaaIan wrote:

So, I've tried to read through this whole thread and put together a good thought process.

First off, I am on the side of the nerf being too hard. Magic is, as someone else stated, supposed to be magical. The reason Starfinders Magic system works is because technology can make up for magic.

Also, its spells are still more impressive, for the most part.

Quote:
yup, makes perfect sense that the hellhound I summon will stand there unless I tell it to fight back every round

Not quite, they do fight back if attacked, but any other actions need to be commanded to them. I find that I can work with that in theory, and that summoning is still one of the best things you can do.

Kasoh wrote:
Gloom wrote:
1) It can be hard to create adventures when you have a high level caster in the party that can simply cast a handful of spells to get to the answer they need and then bypass the challenge entirely.
What's especially frustrating is when you plan for the wizard to solve it 2 seconds, and he doesn't so you have to either remind the wizard he can solve it in 2 seconds with a spell he already knows, or you have watch the party stumble around for two sessions.

Ah well, you can't expect your players to always know what you're thinking, you know.


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I find the summoned Hellhound argument interesting... the fact is, the creature will not do nothing if you don't command them, it will simply not exist, because the command action for them is the same to sustain the spell.

Speaking about sustain spell, these will be the one that casters will look when they want damage, flaming sphere causing 3d6 damage and then causing that same again in the following rounds for only one action is really good damage, it gets better at high levels when Wizard get Effortless Concentration making the caster have effectively 4 actions.


I can easily see Summoner archetype getting a special ability to command more than 1 minion with 1 action - like 2 minions at level 7, 3 at 15 or something.

Alternatively, his summoned minions do 1 action without any command, so long as it is a basic action.


I think most conventional spellcasters are going to want to keep an eye on any spell that requires sustaining - Summon Monster and Spiritual Weapon make for good third actions for characters that don't otherwise need it. If you're not nova'ing with true strike and a ray spell then casting a persistent spell can be a good way to approach fights without a clear "boss" enemy.


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Kyrone wrote:
I find the summoned Hellhound argument interesting... the fact is, the creature will not do nothing if you don't command them, it will simply not exist, because the command action for them is the same to sustain the spell.

hmm you're right, I thought it was a 1 minute duration, but it's sustained up to one minute. Well that seems like an excessive nerf. Requiring an action to command it to do things seems reasonable, requiring an action for the spell to keep working seems like garbage. Summoning is still probably one of your better options, of course.

Quote:
Speaking about sustain spell, these will be the one that casters will look when they want damage, flaming sphere causing 3d6 damage and then causing that same again in the following rounds for only one action is really good damage, it gets better at high levels when Wizard get Effortless Concentration making the caster have effectively 4 actions.

Too bad that doesn't come in till 16th level.


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Blasting used to be the suboptimal option.

It still is, but now the rest is terrible too.

Unlimited, freely scaling cantrips are just like someone sending you flowers while you are laying in a hospital bed after being kneecapped, they're nice but they don't really help.

Summoning does not exist anymore. Buffing does not exist anymore. Save or suck does not exist anymore. Just don't even pretend they kept those as options.

Hell, finger of death is now divine only. xD

In exchange of that, my 3rd level fireball now does 1d6 more than it used to do at level 5 (yay!) but you are NEVER going to use a higher level slot to actually memorize it to do more damage.


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NemoNoName wrote:

Did the Wizards (casters really) need nerfing? Yes.

However. Did they overnerf the Wizards/casters? Well, some yes, some no. Raw wizards are definitively overnerfed now.

Yeah, that's basically my feel now too. Casters were higher power than other characters. I think the extant of their overpoweredness was possibly overstated, but it's really a Your Mileage May Vary kind of thing. Different people have a different level of what they consider acceptable, and there is table variance in how it plays out. But the consensus view was that they were higher powered. So I'd agree that some reigning them in was necessary.

The proper level of nerfing is also an issue where everyone's going to have different opinions on what's enough, what's too much and what's just right. I personally think they went a bit too hard on the nerfs in the playtest and didn't walk them back enough for the final release. To get back to one of my old hobby-horses, I do think a second cycle of playtesting would have been very helpful in locking in the Goldielocks Zone for power level. But that wasn't possible with the super tight timeline Paizo had set for a final release exactly one year after the playtest came out.

My issue is that instead of cutting back the power of casters in one way, they did it in many ways at the same time. All together it adds up to a lot, and in some cases more than the sum of their parts. There's the power of individual spells that got cut down, the durations, in many cases the number of targets, the ability to stack buffs or debuffs due to the highly reduced number of bonus types, the reduced number of spell slots (particularly nasty for the Sorcerer), the lack of bonus spells from a high casting stat, the need to use higher level slots to get the scaling that used to be default, the minion trait seriously hindering summons and familiars and I might be forgetting something else off the top of my head. In exchange they got useful combat cantrips, and DCs that don't depend on spell level. These are actually rather nice. But does it compensate for the reductions? Not in my opinion.

I don't think it's quite as dire as some are saying. I've got some players in my group claiming casters are completely useless in every way now and are just not worth ever playing. That's clearly a dramatic overreaction. But overreactions seem to be the norm for this issue. Of course that's another point too. The reality of any objective measure of balance or whatever is pretty much irrelevant. Game play experience is all about 'feel.' Perception is more important than fact when it comes to how fun something is. Loss Aversion is also hitting those disappointed by the nerfs. Whatever is gained doesn't give as much satisfation as the satisfaction lost with the downgrades.

The lack of slots and need to heighten are one of the potentially easier to fix issues. The solution I'm currently thinking of that might help with casters feeling unsatisfying is a method to regain spell slots similarly to the way focus is regained. I think this could be a great optional rule for the GMG, a house rule or possibly even implemented in a feat. With sufficient time required to get slots back, it will still keep casters from throwing out high level spells all day long, but will give a bit more endurance back. It would also work well with some of the other rules that expand the adventuring day (refocus and treat wounds for example).


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Also agree they needed a lot of nerfs, but they went a bit overboard by applying all of the nerf ideas simultaneously.

If we're gonna be bundled with trash spells, then maybe having a lot of slots per day won't be too bad, right? Less slots and less power per slot for the quadratic hit.

Now that there's not enough bonus types to lolstack that means long spell durations won't be an issue anymore? They neither stack nor have duration.

Summons action economy will balance out with having good strengths and spells? Both weaker and slow, can't even use their spells half the time.

Blast spells were weak in PF1 even with autoscaling? Double every creature's HP and keep blasts roughly the same (I liked the playtest improved damage ones).

Enemies now have great saves across the board so maybe some spells can have generous failure effects? Nothing good unless they crit fail (15% if sniping worst save). Some of the "consolation" effects are pretty laughable.

What about those balanced/weak spells that were cool and required player creativity like Prestidigitation and Unseen Servant? Better nerf them to the ground just in case...

And there's others! I think just half of the proposed nerfs would have been enough to keep Spellcasters fun and useful. Even 5E was more merciful to them even if we're using a lot of the same nerfs.


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I wonder how many of those who are dissatisfied with the new incarnation of the Wizard (or other casters) have actually tried playing one for 12+ levels to see if they're actually fun to play in the framework of the new system (in the ~ 3 weeks it might have been out for some people)?
Or is it just dissatisfaction due to theorycrafting?


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GentleGiant wrote:

I wonder how many of those who are dissatisfied with the new incarnation of the Wizard (or other casters) have actually tried playing one for 12+ levels to see if they're actually fun to play in the framework of the new system (in the ~ 3 weeks it might have been out for some people)?

Or is it just dissatisfaction due to theorycrafting?

People just hate getting their toys nerfed. Doesn't matter if it ends up being better for the game or even better for their specific build, the initial reaction is always going to be outraged when you see that the thing you were doing before is going to be less effective now.


^ Yep. Alot of it is the long run of 3.x->P1E, which seems to be alot of critique/reactions's sole referrent.
Re: fewer slots, I think that also has validity in reigning in (esp. Prepared) Casters' over broadness in capabilities.
I mean, the Quick Study Thesis will still enable that style, but it comes back to 10 min rest which has other demands.


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GentleGiant wrote:

I wonder how many of those who are dissatisfied with the new incarnation of the Wizard (or other casters) have actually tried playing one for 12+ levels to see if they're actually fun to play in the framework of the new system (in the ~ 3 weeks it might have been out for some people)?

Or is it just dissatisfaction due to theorycrafting?

Not many I'd wager, given that a large number of them seem to have not even read the book either.

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