Max focus is 3. How to cast focus 4+ ?


Rules Discussion


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Just started reading the focus section so I probably missed it.
There are a variety of abilities with focus 4, 5, 6 or more.

If the max you can have is 3 (and as far as I can see by the rules, regardless of how many sources of focus, you only have 1 pool so max is 3) how do you use the higher focus abilities?

Thanks!

Sovereign Court

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

I'm going to guess that you are confusing the spell level of focus with the focus points.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

When an ability says "Focus 4" that means it's a 4th level Focus Spell.
Like Angelic Wings is Focus 3, because an angelic sorcerer can't get it before level 6, when their highest spell level is 3.

All focus spells cost 1 focus now.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Confusion probably comes from in the Playtest it cost a certain amount of points equal to the ability's rank (or whatever they called it). I know I was looking at this section today and was asking myself that question.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

That wasn't ever the case - powers (now focus spells) in the playtest did have variable costs, but it wasn't equal to the power level, it was defined per power in the feat that granted it.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Anyone know why they went away from the term power? I like that better and it risks less confusion from those new to RPGs


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Bidmaron wrote:
Anyone know why they went away from the term power? I like that better and it risks less confusion from those new to RPGs

So all things that are spells are called "____ spell".


People in the playtest actually were actually calling for the name to be changed to something involving "spell" because having this entire separate thing that's not called spells but pretty much function exactly like spells just without using spell slots was seen as too confusing.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I suspect we will regret that. Part of the issue in the play test was that powers were in the spell list. Now they aren’t. They don’t take normal spell slots and having at least one of them without having a spellcaster level doesn’t get you anything that requires you to be a spellcaster.
Just because the power works similar to a spell doesn’t mean it should be called a spell.
Can you metamagic a focus spell if you are a spellcaster?

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

I don't see anything stopping someone from using metamagic on focus spells. I believe even the bard has a "metamagic" focus spell.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Except that if you are not a spellcaster you don’t have access to metamagic, and having a focus spell doesn’t make you a spellcaster. This is part of the wonkiness we created when insisting that powers be called some type of spell


Focus spells are spells though, if you can cast a focus spell you are by definition a spellcaster.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Bardarok wrote:
Focus spells are spells though, if you can cast a focus spell you are by definition a spellcaster.

I thought I saw a statement to the contrary in the core rulebook. Or was that just for innate spells?


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Bidmaron wrote:
Except that if you are not a spellcaster you don’t have access to metamagic, and having a focus spell doesn’t make you a spellcaster. This is part of the wonkiness we created when insisting that powers be called some type of spell

You can quite happily get metamagic with only cantrip and focus casting. I mean I'm tempted to pick up Reach Spell for Champion Litanies for example.


Bidmaron wrote:
Except that if you are not a spellcaster you don’t have access to metamagic, and having a focus spell doesn’t make you a spellcaster. This is part of the wonkiness we created when insisting that powers be called some type of spell

focus spells are as much spells are as innate spells.

the source may be different, but they still are spells and everything applicable to spells is applicable to them.

i think it's amuch more elegant solution than having something that looks like a spell, behaves like a spell, but it isn't a spell.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
David knott 242 wrote:
Bardarok wrote:
Focus spells are spells though, if you can cast a focus spell you are by definition a spellcaster.

I thought I saw a statement to the contrary in the core rulebook. Or was that just for innate spells?

I found what you are talking about (p 302) and you are right, I was wrong. Focus-spell only classes don't count as spellcasters despite literally casting spells (since focus spells do count as spells). That is strange to me as it is directly contrary to their stated reasoning for making everything which acts like a spell count as a spell.

So by the definitions in the book the term spellcaster does not mean someone who casts spells it means someone who uses spell slots. That was a bad decision in game design. In the CRB though it seems to only apply to some items as being a spellcaster is not a prerequisite for metamagic.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

That p 302 statement specifically says you must be a spellcaster to use metamagic.
This is why I said we would regret calling powers focus spells, as most would believe it makes you a spellcaster, and focus spells only ABSOLUTELY DO NOT MAKE YOU A SPELL ASTER


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Bidmaron wrote:
That p 302 statement specifically says you must be a spellcaster to use metamagic.

The word metamagic does not appear on that page. It says you don't qualify for feats which require you to be a spellcaster but that isn't a prerequisite for metamagic feats specifically though they are all class feats for full casting classes anyways so it's kind of moot at this point.

As far as I can tell you can still use metamagic with focus spells since nothing I can find says you can't


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I am away from my book and pdf but I thought metamagic fears were tied to spellcaster classes and not accessible to anyone but spellcasters. But I am not an expert on the new rules yet.


Bidmaron wrote:
I am away from my book and pdf but I thought metamagic fears were tied to spellcaster classes and not accessible to anyone but spellcasters. But I am not an expert on the new rules yet.

Well they are but that's because they are class feats. They just don't use the term spellcaster in their prerequisite rather they use wizard, sorcorrer, etc. Kind of a meaningless distinction in this case.

For the CRB p. 302 states that spellcaster means someone who can cast spells other than focus or innate spells. Which would be any full caster or anyone with the dedication feat for such a class. It applies to items and feats

In the CRB there are no feats which requiere you to be "a spellcaster" but I expect them to show up in the APG for archetypes.

Really it just means that paladins and monks cant use staves or other items which require you to be a spellcaster.

But overall I agree now that I've seen the issue. Having Spellcaster not mean someone who casts spells was a mistake.


Right now you can only access metamagic feats via spellcasting classes, so you're have to multiclass in to pick up the feat and apply it to your core class focus spell anyway.

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Spellcaster By definition in the glossary..it seems pretty clear to me

Core Rule Book page 636 wrote:


spellcaster A spellcaster is a character whose class or archetype grants them the spellcasting class feature. The ability to cast focus spells or innate spells does not by itself make a character a spellcaster.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Slamy Mcbiteo wrote:

Spellcaster By definition in the glossary..it seems pretty clear to me

Core Rule Book page 636 wrote:


spellcaster A spellcaster is a character whose class or archetype grants them the spellcasting class feature. The ability to cast focus spells or innate spells does not by itself make a character a spellcaster.

Yes it is clear it is just odd (and IMO bad) that there is a mechanical distinction between someone who can cast spells and someone who is a spellcaster.


i think the only reason such a distinction exists is potential magical items.

i don't think it plays anywhere else?


shroudb wrote:

i think the only reason such a distinction exists is potential magical items.

i don't think it plays anywhere else?

Nowhere else I could find.

But I expect it to show up in some archetypes in future books. Like a prerequisite could say "Divine Spellcaster" which would allow clerics, divine sorcerers, and any future divine tradition full casters (oracles) to take the dedication but not champions or divine tradition monks.


While we're on the subject of the OP. If something is Cantrip 3, does that mean a bard has to be level 6 to take or cast that cantrip?


Barnabas Eckleworth III wrote:
While we're on the subject of the OP. If something is Cantrip 3, does that mean a bard has to be level 6 to take or cast that cantrip?

The only examples of that are composition cantrips which can only be learned through taking the appropriate class feat. But I think yes it means the minimum spell level is 3.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Well, that is why I am saying it was a big mistake to change Powers to Focus Spells. All it did was confuse the terminology. And the only real motive was because they put the blooming powers in the spells chapter in the playtest. What an idiot thing. I am not necessarily opposed to borrowing the spell mechanic for powers, but they really confused things by calling them focus spells. They also limited their design space because it's hard to see a fighter or barbarian archetype ever getting anything called a focus spell.


the problem is that powers where always a type of spells, so people didn't like that things that were spells weren't called spells, so they became focus spells instead.

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder Second Edition / Rules Discussion / Max focus is 3. How to cast focus 4+ ? All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.