Deadmanwalking's Problems With The Final Version Of PF2


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Liberty's Edge

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John Lynch 106 wrote:
What am I missing?

Well, first and most importantly, I really regret ever mentioning a Wizard in Full Plate.

Because that's basically the one build this actually works on at all. Every other build using such Feats is significantly worse than that one. Often much worse. That one is actually vaguely doable, most of the others are not.

Second, that build is flatly improved (to the tune of +2 AC) by taking Champion Dedication at 9th, then Diverse Armor Expert at 14th. The only reason you even wanted the General Feats at all instead of that are because you were also taking Fighter Dedication.

Third, your comparison ignores the +1/+3 to Reflex Saves the Dex guy gets (depending on whether they are to avoid damage), as well as his +5 foot speed. Which is relevant, if not spectacular.

And finally, the real comparison is not a Str build, but comparing that to a more standard Str 10 Wizard and how they do on AC, Saves, and so on. Which is where you get Wizards with all of the defensive advantages of both high Wis and high Dex.


Deadmanwalking wrote:
Second, that build is flatly improved (to the tune of +2 AC) by taking Champion Dedication at 9th, then Diverse Armor Expert at 14th. The only reason you even wanted the General Feats at all instead of that are because you were also taking Fighter Dedication.

It does come with the downside of having to be a champion though. While that doesn’t matter mechanically. It does mean a lot to some people character build wise.

Deadmanwalking wrote:
Third, your comparison ignores the +1/+3 to Reflex Saves the Dex guy gets (depending on whether they are to avoid damage), as well as his +5 foot speed. Which is relevant, if not spectacular.

You got me on the -5 speed and +1 reflex (bulwark would come into play for most reflex saves).

Deadmanwalking wrote:
And finally, the real comparison is not a Str build, but comparing that to a more standard Str 10 Wizard and how they do on AC, Saves, and so on. Which is where you get Wizards with all of the defensive advantages of both high Wis and high Dex.

Sure. But a strength 10 wizard should know pretty quickly not to invest in heavy armour. And if they make the mistake of on,y partially investing in armour, once they spot the mistake they can then retrain it away.

Deadmanwalking wrote:
John Lynch 106 wrote:
What am I missing?

Well, first and most importantly, I really regret ever mentioning a Wizard in Full Plate.

Because that's basically the one build this actually works on at all. Every other build using such Feats is significantly worse than that one. Often much worse. That one is actually vaguely doable, most of the others are not.

Thats completely fair. Although in that case it doesn’t seem like a trap option if there are valid builds for those feats. Highly niche, yes. But not a trap feat.

It would be like calling combat expertise (and not investing in any further combat maneuvers) a trap in PF1e. It isn’t. It might be a trap for most classes. But for It certain builds it can actually be quite devastating.

Liberty's Edge

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John Lynch 106 wrote:

Thats completely fair. Although in that case it doesn’t seem like a trap option if there are valid builds for those feats. Highly niche, yes. But not a trap feat.

It would be like calling combat expertise (and not investing in any further combat maneuvers) a trap in PF1e. It isn’t. It might be a trap for most classes. But for It certain builds it can actually be quite devastating.

I'd strongly argue that it remains a trap absent ways to levelerage Training into higher Proficiency, since it's gonna get more-or-less accidentally taken by a lot of people who aren't using it for the one thing it's good for.

And that's what a trap option is and why it's a bad game design thing, the people who take something thinking it's good and get screwed over by the fact that it isn't. I mean, even for Wizards, to be good you need to go all the way to Heavy Armor, a lot of people aren't gonna do that. And it becomes a much worse idea the less of it you take.

And then, of course, there are the General Feats for Weapon Proficiency, which don't even have the one good option to help them out.

Liberty's Edge

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All that said, it does sound like Archetypes are going to be the fix for Proficiency stuff like this. Since apparently (based on some posts from people with the Lost Omens World Guide) the Aldori Duelist Archetype requires Proficiency in that weapon, but then scales it by your Class.

I consider that acceptable assuming they make some more generally applicable Archetypes for Martial Weapons and some sort of Armor, rather than all being as specifically thematically restricted as the Aldori Duelist.


I’d rather have options that broaden the number of character archetypes available by including options that might be bad for most people, then disallow those character archetypes altogether.

I don’t think that’s bad design.. It’s simply prioritising one thing (allowing greater diversity in characters) over another thing (protecting players from themselves). When you consider how much the new edition already protects players from themselves, including this one feat to broaden character variety doesn’t seem bad.

Liberty's Edge

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My main idea was always for there to be some way to leverage Trained Proficiency into something better, rather than removing them (which was never gonna happen).

And, in fact, it looks like that's what we're getting in the form of Archetypes. Given that, and the fact that everyone is going to get Unarmed Proficiency at the same level as Simple, this issue (#1 in my original post) has, from my perspective, become solely a need for a generic weapon archetype and generic armor archetype (or both as the same archetype) that leverages mere Proficiency.

Issue #3 also seems well on its way to a solve.

Which leaves only issue #2 (and the new issue of Mutagenists getting absolutely nothing at 1st level), as my issues with PF2. That's very nice, and I'm very happy.


Deadmanwalking wrote:
My main idea was always for there to be some way to leverage Trained Proficiency into something better, rather than removing them (which was never gonna happen).

In PF2e the paradigm seems to be advanced weapons are worth taking a -2 penalty to your attack roll to have. I’m basing this off the fighter class primarily, but it seems to get repeated a few times. So using the CRB only, weapon proficiency is worthwhile taking (twice) for spellcasters.


Deadmanwalking wrote:

this issue (#1 in my original post) has, from my perspective, become solely a need for a generic weapon archetype and generic armor archetype (or both as the same archetype) that leverages mere Proficiency.

Truly generic for weapons seems very unlikely to me, but more than 1 for very common weapon types and ones with some flexibility to flavor seem likely. So not so much “weapon master,” but maybe knight/cavalier with different sub orders that give many options.

Liberty's Edge

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John Lynch 106 wrote:
In PF2e the paradigm seems to be advanced weapons are worth taking a -2 penalty to your attack roll to have. I’m basing this off the fighter class primarily, but it seems to get repeated a few times. So using the CRB only, weapon proficiency is worthwhile taking (twice) for spellcasters.

This is not true mathematically. A Staff with an extra +2 to hit does better damage than a Bastard Sword, assuming equal Str and magical enhancements.

And Fighters, you'll note, get a Feat to up their Proficiency with Advanced Weapons, while everyone else generally only gets them if they can count them as Martial.

Unicore wrote:
Truly generic for weapons seems very unlikely to me, but more than 1 for very common weapon types and ones with some flexibility to flavor seem likely. So not so much “weapon master,” but maybe knight/cavalier with different sub orders that give many options.

A 'Weapon Master' Archetype that gets to pick a single weapon seems totally reasonable to me for something setting-light like the APG.

Armor's a tad trickier.


Deadmanwalking wrote:
This is not true mathematically. A Staff with an extra +2 to hit does better damage than a Bastard Sword, assuming equal Str and magical enhancements.

Yes, I know that. It did appear to consistently be used though. Although I did miss the fighter feat, so there you go.


I think they should have loosened up with Proficiency a bit; like barbarians, monks, paladins, and rangers all able to get Legendary proficiency in weapons, rogues and warpriests able to get Master, and sorcerers and wizards, Expert.


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Colonel Kurtz wrote:
I think they should have loosened up with Proficiency a bit; like barbarians, monks, paladins, and rangers all able to get Legendary proficiency in weapons, rogues and warpriests able to get Master, and sorcerers and wizards, Expert.

I see legendary proficiency as the equivalent of weapon training. It makes sense to keep that fighter only.

Liberty's Edge

Yeah, I'm comfy with most of the levels of Proficiencies where they are. Alchemist is maybe an exception, but only maybe.


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John Lynch 106 wrote:
What am I missing?

You are missing several things. First of all, the character is trained in heavy armor, that is +2 AC. Secondly, unarmored can use runes, too, which means that magical bonuses to armor can be ignored (just like level, base and so on). You only need to compare

Full plate (6) + trained (2) = 8
Unarmored (0) + Dex (1) + Expert (4) = 5

But the most important thing is this: A typical unarmored wizard will not boost STR, but DEX. At DEX 18, which is easily achievable, the unarmored AC is actually the same from 13th level, but you spent three feats to get there (also, your REF is 1 against damage and 4 against the rest). If the DEX wizards invest as heavily in DEX as you in STR, it is 1 point of AC plus 2 points of REF (5 versus everything).

Unarmored will also have a mixture of master proficiency in perception / REF / Will / HP / 5 Speed (which would be 30 to your 20).

So, in the end you have at best the same AC, worse perception/saves/HP/speed/initiative (take your pick), with no practical way of retraining. The upside is that your AC will be better for some parts of the journey, while you will be worse in other stuff, as they spend feats on that.

Going STR is only feasible if you want to use that STR for something besides armor or if you spend a lot of time at the level range in which your AC is actually higher. Your character multi-classes into fighter, so maybe it is worth it. But even then, you at best end up the same in AC, but worse in several other important stats, or even worse in AC in addition to being worse in other stats ...


Deadmanwalking wrote:
John Lynch 106 wrote:
In PF2e the paradigm seems to be advanced weapons are worth taking a -2 penalty to your attack roll to have. I’m basing this off the fighter class primarily, but it seems to get repeated a few times. So using the CRB only, weapon proficiency is worthwhile taking (twice) for spellcasters.

This is not true mathematically. A Staff with an extra +2 to hit does better damage than a Bastard Sword, assuming equal Str and magical enhancements.

And Fighters, you'll note, get a Feat to up their Proficiency with Advanced Weapons, while everyone else generally only gets them if they can count them as Martial.

Unicore wrote:
Truly generic for weapons seems very unlikely to me, but more than 1 for very common weapon types and ones with some flexibility to flavor seem likely. So not so much “weapon master,” but maybe knight/cavalier with different sub orders that give many options.

A 'Weapon Master' Archetype that gets to pick a single weapon seems totally reasonable to me for something setting-light like the APG.

Armor's a tad trickier.

I guess if "weapon master" were its own archetype that started at level 13 and granted expert prof in a trained weapon, that would be balanced and not stepping on thematic toes because it is a level later than the fighter and would require a character be ready to begin a new tree of archetype dedication, but it also feels pretty bland and meaningless thematically, and what would it grant at lower levels if they wanted to start it earlier? Weapon specialization is meaningless without expert proficiency. Fighter feats would be a fighter archetype. No, I think the generic weapon archetype is fighter multi-class.

It is actually the Armor one that needs more than champion, due to thematic reasons, but with so few armor types, and armor doing so little beyond just boosting AC, I think getting 4 or 5 different heavily armored archetypes is going to be better than 1 generic one, especially when the creative folks at Paizo give us interesting reasons for choosing each of them beyond the one or two feats that would grant the expertise in Armor.

Legendary is absolutely reserved for class specific Niche in just about every proficiency beyond skills. There will be more than one class path to getting legendary in saves, but it will still always be main class protected .

Dark Archive

Deadmanwalking wrote:
John Lynch 106 wrote:

Thats completely fair. Although in that case it doesn’t seem like a trap option if there are valid builds for those feats. Highly niche, yes. But not a trap feat.

It would be like calling combat expertise (and not investing in any further combat maneuvers) a trap in PF1e. It isn’t. It might be a trap for most classes. But for It certain builds it can actually be quite devastating.

I'd strongly argue that it remains a trap absent ways to levelerage Training into higher Proficiency, since it's gonna get more-or-less accidentally taken by a lot of people who aren't using it for the one thing it's good for.

And that's what a trap option is and why it's a bad game design thing, the people who take something thinking it's good and get screwed over by the fact that it isn't. I mean, even for Wizards, to be good you need to go all the way to Heavy Armor, a lot of people aren't gonna do that. And it becomes a much worse idea the less of it you take.

This isn’t true. I will show it with through the AC of wizards, one in light armor (when s/he gets the armor proficiency until robes kick in), which isn’t that difficult, each with stats of 16 in dex starting and using each boost to improve Dex.

AC=10+proficiency+dex mod (up to armor check penalty)+ armor+armor potency runes
(This is for anyone wondering where I get the numbers)
Level 1:
Wizard (naked)—16 AC
Level 2:
Wizard (naked)—17AC
Level 3:
Wizard (naked)—18AC
Wizard (studded leather)—20AC
Level 4:
Wizard (n)—19 AC
Wizard (sl)—21AC
L5:
Wizard (explorer’s clothing +1potency rune; 18 dex)—22AC
Wizard (leather +1 potency rune; 18 dex)—23 AC
L6:
Wizard (e)—23AC
Wizard (l)—24AC
L7:
Wizard (e)—24AC
Wizard (l)—25AC
L8:
Wizard (e)—25AC
Wizard (l)—26AC
L9:
Wizard (e)—26AC
Wizard (l)—27AC
L10 (dex 19):
Wizard (e)—27AC
Wizard (l)—28AC
L11 (+2 potency rune):
Wizard (e)—29AC
Wizard (l)—30AC
L12:
Wizard (e)—30AC
Wizard (l)—31AC
L13 (defensive robes expertise):
Wizard: (e)—33AC
Wizard: (l)—34AC

At this point, I would drop the general feat and retrain into something else, but I think the 10 levels at which I have a better AC than an unarmored wizard make up for it.

Also, I don’t think it’s a fair assumption to think that new players will think that armor proficiency will scale and then not believe that magic proficiency doesn’t scale as well. For example, rogues and some of the ancestries have feats available that give them cantrips; if I were a new player who would make the mistake of believing that my armor and weapon proficiencies scaled from general, basic training, feats, at least for the rogue, I would think that my casting would scale as well. Also, I initially thought that multiclass caster archetypes’ casting scaled, implying that no one with logic would make that mistake is very demeaning for something that is just as or even more initially unclear.


Blackest Sheep wrote:
John Lynch 106 wrote:
What am I missing?

You are missing several things. First of all, the character is trained in heavy armor, that is +2 AC. Secondly, unarmored can use runes, too, which means that magical bonuses to armor can be ignored (just like level, base and so on). You only need to compare

Full plate (6) + trained (2) = 8
Unarmored (0) + Dex (1) + Expert (4) = 5

But the most important thing is this: A typical unarmored wizard will not boost STR, but DEX. At DEX 18, which is easily achievable, the unarmored AC is actually the same from 13th level, but you spent three feats to get there (also, your REF is 1 against damage and 4 against the rest). If the DEX wizards invest as heavily in DEX as you in STR, it is 1 point of AC plus 2 points of REF (5 versus everything).

Unarmored will also have a mixture of master proficiency in perception / REF / Will / HP / 5 Speed (which would be 30 to your 20).

So, in the end you have at best the same AC, worse perception/saves/HP/speed/initiative (take your pick), with no practical way of retraining. The upside is that your AC will be better for some parts of the journey, while you will be worse in other stuff, as they spend feats on that.

Going STR is only feasible if you want to use that STR for something besides armor or if you spend a lot of time at the level range in which your AC is actually higher. Your character multi-classes into fighter, so maybe it is worth it. But even then, you at best end up the same in AC, but worse in several other important stats, or even worse in AC in addition to being worse in other stats ...

1.Good point. His armoured AC is 2 higher then I listed. Thank you.

2. How does high strength and wisdom reduce his perception, HP, initiative? I am genuinely confused by this statement.
3. It was labeled as an eldritch knight build, so strength is definitely relevant. Can you please go into what several other stats he was worse in that would be necessary for an eldritch knight build?

Liberty's Edge

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@Narxiso:

First, I feel like arguing over this is kinda pointless now that there's a forthcoming solution I consider acceptable.

Second, you can and probably should mechanically do even better than that with Champion Dedication.

Third, I actually do think that attack cantrips are a bit of a trap and could use more warning in that regard. Non-attack cantrips remain interesting and useful options, however.

Liberty's Edge

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Unicore wrote:
I guess if "weapon master" were its own archetype that started at level 13 and granted expert prof in a trained weapon, that would be balanced and not stepping on thematic toes because it is a level later than the fighter and would require a character be ready to begin a new tree of archetype dedication, but it also feels pretty bland and meaningless thematically, and what would it grant at lower levels if they wanted to start it earlier? Weapon specialization is meaningless without expert proficiency. Fighter feats would be a fighter archetype. No, I think the generic weapon archetype is fighter multi-class.

I was more thinking an early level one that, like Aldori Duelist, just gives one weapon of your choice you are Proficient with the ability to advance as your Class weapons do.

Note, I'm suggesting one single weapon, not the every weapon Fighter grants. It would presumably also grant access to some neat weapon-specific Feats of various sorts (I can think of some cool possibilities).

Unicore wrote:
It is actually the Armor one that needs more than champion, due to thematic reasons, but with so few armor types, and armor doing so little beyond just boosting AC, I think getting 4 or 5 different heavily armored archetypes is going to be better than 1 generic one, especially when the creative folks at Paizo give us interesting reasons for choosing each of them beyond the one or two feats that would grant the expertise in Armor.

I actually more or less agree. Hence saying it's more complicated. :)

Unicore wrote:
Legendary is absolutely reserved for class specific Niche in just about every proficiency beyond skills. There will be more than one class path to getting legendary in saves, but it will still always be main class protected .

Agreed entirely.


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So, Multiclass casting proficiencies *do* scale. If you keep taking the feats, you get Expert at 12th and Master at 18th. Not sure why everyone seems to think they don’t.


Deadmanwalking wrote:

@Narxiso:

First, I feel like arguing over this is kinda pointless now that there's a forthcoming solution I consider acceptable.

Second, you can and probably should mechanically do even better than that with Champion Dedication.

Third, I actually do think that attack cantrips are a bit of a trap and could use more warning in that regard. Non-attack cantrips remain interesting and useful options, however.

Just curious since rollplay hasn't been the focus for me, how are they a bit of a trap? Neither the dex nor the str caster would be that dependant on melee weapons, so cantrips seem like a way to always have backup damage. For arcane and occult, Telekinetic Projectile deals 1d6+Int/cha/wis with +1d6 every two levels or so.

Primal seems to have most options with acid splash, electric arc, produce flame and ray of frost, two of them having chance for persistent damage and a variety of effects. Or is it just that potentially 5d6+int/cha/wis with double damage on crit isn't good numbers at say, level 10th?

Liberty's Edge

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First World Bard wrote:
So, Multiclass casting proficiencies *do* scale. If you keep taking the feats, you get Expert at 12th and Master at 18th. Not sure why everyone seems to think they don’t.

We were talking cantrips given by non-Multiclass stuff. Like all the Ancestry Feats that give you one.

Corvo Spiritwind wrote:

Just curious since rollplay hasn't been the focus for me, how are they a bit of a trap? Neither the dex nor the str caster would be that dependant on melee weapons, so cantrips seem like a way to always have backup damage. For arcane and occult, Telekinetic Projectile deals 1d6+Int/cha/wis with +1d6 every two levels or so.

Primal seems to have most options with acid splash, electric arc, produce flame and ray of frost, two of them having chance for persistent damage and a variety of effects. Or is it just that potentially 5d6+int/cha/wis with double damage on crit isn't good numbers at say, level 10th?

I, like Narxiso, was specifically referring to attack cantrips taken as, say, an Ancestry Feat, which never rise above Trained. Casters taking attack cantrips is a great choice.

My apologies for the imprecision and confusion.


John Lynch 106 wrote:
Colonel Kurtz wrote:
I think they should have loosened up with Proficiency a bit; like barbarians, monks, paladins, and rangers all able to get Legendary proficiency in weapons, rogues and warpriests able to get Master, and sorcerers and wizards, Expert.
I see legendary proficiency as the equivalent of weapon training. It makes sense to keep that fighter only.

Yeah, but in PF1 they (fighters, paladins, etc) all have High BAB, seems strange to have a whole level of proficiency just to basically give the fighter +2 to attacks, could just be a class feature (like in 4th Ed).


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I believe the discussion was about attack cantrips not scaling if you just have an innate cantrip not tied to a tradition you are a caster for, or a multiclass cantrip that you don’t continue taking the feats for. In those cases, your proficiencies/DCs don’t advance beyond Trained, and therefore you fall behind in the math.


Deadmanwalking wrote:


I was more thinking an early level one that, like Aldori Duelist, just gives one weapon of your choice you are Proficient with the ability to advance as your Class weapons do.

I see your point, but I think the trick then becomes "what else does this archetype grant?" For specific combat styles like the red mantis assassin and the Aldori Duelist, there is a full and vibrant combat style that will give characters at least 3 different feats that will be worth taking if their goal is to fight like an iconic version of this character type.

A greatsword wielding weapon master and a hatchet thrower weapon master are going to need pretty different supplemental feats to build up. I just don't see a generic archetype having enough to offer to be a full archetype and not 1 feat.


Ah, my bad, I missed that part. That'll teach me to post after waking up. How does the math check out on the cantrips over time, do they stay relevant? I kind of like the idea of someone doing 5d6 damage with a copper coin at level 10.

Dark Archive

First World Bard wrote:
So, Multiclass casting proficiencies *do* scale. If you keep taking the feats, you get Expert at 12th and Master at 18th. Not sure why everyone seems to think they don’t.

I meant scale automatically. I was just using it how scaling as it has been used throughout this thread with the complaint that weapons and armors don’t scale. Also, I’m perfectly fine with the scaling of the feats, if a little miffed about how they require skill proficiencies to get higher even if it does make sense (maybe I’m fifty fifty). Anyhow, i was just trying to make a point that people were not holding the same standards for casting as for martial fighting, as martial weapons and armor can be improved with class feats, just like casting proficiency. The general feats just offer a way for better protection with armor for some for many important levels without costing some much as a class feat and strict adherence to a faith or code, and they can still be useful to characters’ purposes.


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Colonel Kurtz wrote:
Yeah, but in PF1 they (fighters, paladins, etc) all have High BAB, seems strange to have a whole level of proficiency just to basically give the fighter +2 to attacks, could just be a class feature (like in 4th Ed).

The weapon training comes online at level 1, and by having it work with the proficiency system you reduce cognitive load “I have to add proficiency AND this random +2” (once someone learns how the proficiency system works they immediately understand what expert with weapons at level 1 means). It also includes a hard cap on bonuses (no matter what you will never get legendary AND +2 in martial weapons).

If fighter’s martial weapons was the only time legendary existed, I would agree it’s not necessary. But legendary is used all over the place.


Narxiso wrote:
First World Bard wrote:
So, Multiclass casting proficiencies *do* scale. If you keep taking the feats, you get Expert at 12th and Master at 18th. Not sure why everyone seems to think they don’t.
I meant scale automatically. I was just using it how scaling as it has been used throughout this thread with the complaint that weapons and armors don’t scale. Also, I’m perfectly fine with the scaling of the feats, if a little miffed about how they require skill proficiencies to get higher even if it does make sense (maybe I’m fifty fifty). Anyhow, i was just trying to make a point that people were not holding the same standards for casting as for martial fighting, as martial weapons and armor can be improved with class feats, just like casting proficiency. The general feats just offer a way for better protection with armor for some for many important levels without costing some much as a class feat and strict adherence to a faith or code, and they can still be useful to characters’ purposes.

And will very likely give access to cool thematic archetypes that improve specific proficiencies to make the archetypes viable over the course of a characters full career. I agree with DMW at this point that the general feat proficiency issue is pretty much solved/ working as intended.


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Deadmanwalking wrote:

We were talking cantrips given by non-Multiclass stuff. Like all the Ancestry Feats that give you one.

Cyouni’s example was a Cleric /Wizard multiclass. Fair point on Ancestries, and also on someone that just wants to make a Arcane Trickster type character without advancing the MC archetype past basic spellcasting. Thats why I decided to stick with the primal cantrip from my Gnome Druid’s heritage, rather than branching out to a different tradition.

Liberty's Edge

Corvo Spiritwind wrote:
Ah, my bad, I missed that part. That'll teach me to post after waking up. How does the math check out on the cantrips over time, do they stay relevant? I kind of like the idea of someone doing 5d6 damage with a copper coin at level 10.

Cantrips compare favorably with Simple Weapons with Reload like a crossbow. The ones without an attack roll also combine nicely with making actual attacks if you have a weapon that doesn't have reload. Electric Arc is particularly good since it can hit two enemies.

Telekinetic Projectile specifically has a weird wording thing going on where it's not clear if it's intended to be a Spell Attack. I think it almost certainly is, and assuming so it's fine.


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Narxiso wrote:
First World Bard wrote:
So, Multiclass casting proficiencies *do* scale. If you keep taking the feats, you get Expert at 12th and Master at 18th. Not sure why everyone seems to think they don’t.
I meant scale automatically. I was just using it how scaling as it has been used throughout this thread with the complaint that weapons and armors don’t scale. Also, I’m perfectly fine with the scaling of the feats, if a little miffed about how they require skill proficiencies to get higher even if it does make sense (maybe I’m fifty fifty). Anyhow, i was just trying to make a point that people were not holding the same standards for casting as for martial fighting, as martial weapons and armor can be improved with class feats, just like casting proficiency. The general feats just offer a way for better protection with armor for some for many important levels without costing some much as a class feat and strict adherence to a faith or code, and they can still be useful to characters’ purposes.

Ahh, I gotcha.

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First World Bard wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:

We were talking cantrips given by non-Multiclass stuff. Like all the Ancestry Feats that give you one.

Cyouni’s example was a Cleric /Wizard multiclass. Fair point on Ancestries, and also on someone that just wants to make a Arcane Trickster type character without advancing the MC archetype past basic spellcasting. Thats why I decided to stick with the primal cantrip from my Gnome Druid’s heritage, rather than branching out to a different tradition.

Ah, gotcha. I must have missed that one entirely.

Narxiso wrote:
I meant scale automatically. I was just using it how scaling as it has been used throughout this thread with the complaint that weapons and armors don’t scale.

I've never objected to stuff you need to further invest in to scale. I objected only to those things where there was no direct path to advancement. Multiclass Archetypes offer such a choice and are thus not a trap. Taking attack cantrips on an Elf Fighter very much can be such a trap.

Dark Archive

Deadmanwalking wrote:
First World Bard wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:

We were talking cantrips given by non-Multiclass stuff. Like all the Ancestry Feats that give you one.

Cyouni’s example was a Cleric /Wizard multiclass. Fair point on Ancestries, and also on someone that just wants to make a Arcane Trickster type character without advancing the MC archetype past basic spellcasting. Thats why I decided to stick with the primal cantrip from my Gnome Druid’s heritage, rather than branching out to a different tradition.

Ah, gotcha. I must have missed that one entirely.

Narxiso wrote:
I meant scale automatically. I was just using it how scaling as it has been used throughout this thread with the complaint that weapons and armors don’t scale.
I've never objected to stuff you need to further invest in to scale. I objected only to those things where there was no direct path to advancement. Multiclass Archetypes offer such a choice and are thus not a trap. Taking attack cantrips on an Elf Fighter very much can be such a trap.

Sorry, I didn’t mean you. I was talking about some others who didn’t like that their proficiencies didn’t automatically scale without the level 12 and 14 fighter and champion feats. I understand your previous point even if I don’t agree with it, at least I think I do.

Liberty's Edge

Narxiso wrote:
Sorry, I didn’t mean you. I was talking about some others who didn’t like that their proficiencies didn’t automatically scale without the level 12 and 14 fighter and champion feats.

Fair enough. Just making sure my own position on the issue was clear. :)


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John Lynch 106 wrote:
2. How does high strength and wisdom reduce his perception, HP, initiative? I am genuinely confused by this statement.

I laid it out in my post, and it is pretty obvious: For each feat a STR wizard needs for armor proficiency, a DEX wizard can spend a feat on something else.

A very simple example would be at 1st level, STR wizard gets into medium armor, DEX wizard obtains +2 initiative and expert perception. The STR wizard is worse in perception, worse at initiative, and if perception is initiative (or stealth), a lot worse. Better at athletics initiative, though ...

Over the lifetime this will fluctuate due to class proficiencies and feats to spend, but getting heavy armor has the opportunity cost of not getting whatever else those three feats might grant.

John Lynch 106 wrote:
3. It was labeled as an eldritch knight build, so strength is definitely relevant. Can you please go into what several other stats he was worse in that would be necessary for an eldritch knight build?

Speed, HP, saves, skills, whatever one chooses instead of armor proficiency.

Honestly, the best comparison with your character is probably with a fighter MC'ing into wizard. Both will spend precious actions whacking folks, while a wizard will mostly cast spells. So you can compare AC and the like, but due to the vastly different styles of playing, this is rather difficult.


I already have those feats you mentioned (or the wizard gets it via class features). I think we will have to agree to disagree.


Narxiso wrote:

L13 (defensive robes expertise):

Wizard: (e)—33AC
Wizard: (l)—34AC

I think your math is off here

AC=10+proficiency+dex mod (up to armor check penalty)+ armor+armor potency runes
Unarmored ac 33 = 10+17(level+expert)+4(dex)+0(armor)+2(runes)
Leather ac 32=10 + 15(level+trained) +4(dex cap)+1(armor)+2(runes)

Also, I wished canny accumen did something between when you gain Expert normally and when it gave master so it wasn't deadweight for almost half the game in some cases.


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

L13 (defensive robes expertise):

Wizard: (e)—33AC
Wizard: (l)—34AC

I think your math is off here

AC=10+proficiency+dex mod (up to armor check penalty)+ armor+armor potency runes
Unarmored ac 33 = 10+17(level+expert)+4(dex)+0(armor)+2(runes)
Leather ac 32=10 + 15(level+trained) +4(dex cap)+1(armor)+2(runes)

Also, I wished canny accumen did something between when you gain Expert normally and when it gave master so it wasn't deadweight for almost half the game in some cases.

Yeah it is kinda retrain bait for those levels in between. A house rule for a +1 bonus wouldn’t seem out of line, but I doubt the feat would be changed to officially give that.


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kitmehsu wrote:
Narxiso wrote:

L13 (defensive robes expertise):

Wizard: (e)—33AC
Wizard: (l)—34AC

I think your math is off here

AC=10+proficiency+dex mod (up to armor check penalty)+ armor+armor potency runes
Unarmored ac 33 = 10+17(level+expert)+4(dex)+0(armor)+2(runes)
Leather ac 32=10 + 15(level+trained) +4(dex cap)+1(armor)+2(runes)

Also, I wished canny accumen did something between when you gain Expert normally and when it gave master so it wasn't deadweight for almost half the game in some cases.

I don't think it's needed to count runes since those are universally capped, making the math a little cleaner. I personally still like the Armor proficiency feat, but like most feats, it's not universal. I noticed that on classes that get master in medium armor for example, going heavy isn't worth it since they only need 12 dex for the breastplate.

On the other hand, for casters such as bard/druid/cleric/sorcerer/wizard, who don't depend on str or dex for attacks due to scaling cantrips, the alternatives seem interesting. One path could be keeping str and dex at 0 and pumping up con/int/cha/wis for a more utility and social character. The armor penalty only applies to str/dex checks anyway.

Alternatively, many of said casters can go the Warpriest/magus path and pump up str. A sorcerer with enlarge, haste can potentially pack a punch. Plus with ancestry or fighter dedication, they could pick up reach weapons, or go sword and board.

They might not be as good as the min-maxed dex caster, but where's the fun if every caster goes that path and they all end up in the same explorer's clothing. I personally wouldn't hate seeing a cloistered cleric in Impenetrable Scale, which gets progressively more physical resistance for the day, or a dragon sorcerer Dragonplate having access to dragonbreath.

Dark Archive

kitmehsu wrote:
Narxiso wrote:

L13 (defensive robes expertise):

Wizard: (e)—33AC
Wizard: (l)—34AC

I think your math is off here

AC=10+proficiency+dex mod (up to armor check penalty)+ armor+armor potency runes
Unarmored ac 33 = 10+17(level+expert)+4(dex)+0(armor)+2(runes)
Leather ac 32=10 + 15(level+trained) +4(dex cap)+1(armor)+2(runes)

Also, I wished canny accumen did something between when you gain Expert normally and when it gave master so it wasn't deadweight for almost half the game in some cases.

That was definitely a typo. I think I just fell into the flow of writing all of it up. I wrote below that I would get rid of the armor at thirteen.

Narxiso wrote:

L13 (defensive robes expertise):

Wizard: (e)—33AC
Wizard: (l)—34AC

You’ve really got to shape up if you want to make your point. Come on, man. You’re better than this.


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John Lynch 106 wrote:
Colonel Kurtz wrote:
Yeah, but in PF1 they (fighters, paladins, etc) all have High BAB, seems strange to have a whole level of proficiency just to basically give the fighter +2 to attacks, could just be a class feature (like in 4th Ed).

The weapon training comes online at level 1, and by having it work with the proficiency system you reduce cognitive load “I have to add proficiency AND this random +2” (once someone learns how the proficiency system works they immediately understand what expert with weapons at level 1 means). It also includes a hard cap on bonuses (no matter what you will never get legendary AND +2 in martial weapons).

If fighter’s martial weapons was the only time legendary existed, I would agree it’s not necessary. But legendary is used all over the place.

Yeah, I like the cap of +8, I just think they could have spread the Legendary love around a bit for weapons (monk Legendary in unarmed). I"m sure there's more interesting things to distinguish the fighter than +2 to hit.


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Hoo boy.

So when I made my big 'ole post explaining the mathematical reasons for why a general feat that just gave you all armor proficiencies scaled to your class's armor proficiencies isn't actually at all OP, I used the full plate Wizard as an example because it seems the most "extreme" to those used to thinking in PF1 or D&D terms. Like, oh no, someone got three whole tiers for free and it scales! The horror! Except it's not. I'm not gonna redo the math again as it seems most of the thread at this point understands that much.

There's a few people bringing up retraining, and that's just a really bad argument. I'm not entirely against certain feats being made with the assumption of being retrained - I think there's a valid niche for some feats to get certain character concepts off the ground earlier when normally you would need to wait until a much higher level. If you only need this one thing from this wider suite of abilities you'll be getting for free from a MC later, I think it's valid to have an easier-to-get feat that does the same thing that can be immediately and freely retrained to something else the second it becomes redundant.

However, Armor Proficiency is not this. There is not a thing you can just switch to and untrain Armor Proficiency and keep the on-par AC you wanted from the armor you invested in, there is not a 1:1 replacement. A feat tax is not the same thing, either - a core goal of PF2 is to not need to spend additional feats to keep doing what you've already been doing.

With regards to the monk specifically, monk already has class features tied to being unarmored. They're unique in that they have built-in reasons to not use any armor, even if they had fully scaling proficiency all the way up to Legendary. And I don't think an armored monk is THAT thematically inappropriate that it needs to hold back the whole system to prevent its existence - I think it's quite a cool idea, and I remember someone on the PF2 subreddit asking for advice specifically how to make that concept come online (the answer was "no").

Which brings us to archetypes. The monk is probably the only class for whom I think an archetype for armor is appropriate, just because they get penalized for wearing armor otherwise and a more substantial rework would be necessary. That fits the niche of an archetype perfectly.

I strongly do NOT think that archetypes are appropriate in any other case, for a couple reasons.

One, it delays builds. A major goal of PF2 was for character concepts to come online at much earlier levels, a concept that may have only been possible at level 15 in PF1 is now generally doable within the first few levels, largely thanks to the abundance of feats, the elimination of feat chains and unnecessary prereqs, and the ease of multiclassing. If the only way to get decent armor proficiency and scaling is through class feats, that's going to delay concepts by however many class feat it requires - 2 whole levels per feat. Something as simple as wearing the right outfight and having a multiclass shouldn't be taking that long to get off the ground.

Two, but related to one, it interferes with dedication feats. If you're taking an archetype just for the armor, you're stuck in it for a significant period of time, which is really bad when all you want is to MC into Fighter while also looking the part.

Three, but related to two, it's going to bloat the system with a bunch of archetypes that are all essentially just "this class, but with armor." That's not a concept worth an entire archetype, and due to the nature of archetypes they necessarily force a player to choose between that archetype or a cooler one because one grants the right costume in their mind's eye.

Finally, I do think a generic "armored person" archetype is appropriate, but I do not think it's a proper substitute for a general feat that gives scaling proficiency.

The reason is that armor proficiency just is not really worth an entire class feat, much less two. Right now, Armor Proficiency as a feat has a tough time competing against other general feats. Armor that scales does not make it stronger at any point, it just makes it not suddenly suck at level 13 for no reason - if it would be OP to have scaling armor at level 16, it is OP at level 3. This is what most of the thread seems to already understand.

And because it's not really worth an entire class feat, any generic archetype that's just about armor would need to have a lot more baggage than just wearing a different outfit. It would likely involve things like skill feats, armor specializations, et cetera and would include other feats to do things like increase your class's armor proficiency progression by a tier, or other armor-centric abilities. That's going to be way too much for a lot of concepts that really just want their character to be wearing a different outfit.

It's still a cool idea, and it would greatly reduce the need to have a bajillion redundant archetypes that are just "REALLY armored version of a regular class" but it fulfills a different need, that would be for someone who really wants to make their character tankier regardless of what armor they're wearing (they might take it to be an unarmored badass, for all we know) rather than someone who's mostly just trying to make a STR build.

And that's why I keep coming back to just having it be one general feat that you take once. No rules bloat needed, no need to read through an entire archetype just to figure out it's the "heavy armor" variant.

For those arguing that classes should "mean something": the game has been entirely transformed into feats. Your class is feats. Your skills are feats. Your ancestry is feats. Your parents are feats, and all that are inside your boots are just yet more feats. The entire game is about customization, on a very fundamental level. It is absurd that something as simple as what amounts to a costume change is "too much customization" in the everything-is-customizable RPG.

It's not that flavor is unimportant here, but the question should be "is there an undue pressure to take this option despite it clashing with flavor?" I don't think armor is nearly good enough to pressure anyone who wasn't already planning on wearing it into taking it, at least not in any capacity that isn't already possible from levels 1-12.

The only real obstacle I'm seeing is that STR requirements might be a bit too ignorable, but I'd rather just add STR requirements to automatically get proficiency in heavier armor through Armor Proficiency (and otherwise permit someone to take the feat again to gain proficiency even if they don't meet STR requirements, since flexible armor is a thing). So you'd automatically gain scaling medium armor proficiency at 12 STR and scaling heavy armor proficiency at 16 STR , or you can take the feat again to ignore those requirements and be proficient in all armors no matter your STR (assuming your plan is just to eat penalties).


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Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber

i don't think it's OP i just think it's bad design because it's boring. I'd prefer if dedications all gave more proficiencies.

now with scaling? I'd instead make it add light and medium proficiency that scales and if you're at least trained in medium armor you gain heavy that scales. otherwise there is really no reason to go medium over heavy.

this is if i was going to make it from general feats anyway. I'd still prefer it if dedication feats gave more proficiencies, though really i think that that proficiency should have scaled on it's own timer.

also how do people feel about mage armor, trading a spell slot per day for free runes?


I don't think the armor archetypes will be "this class but with armor." I think they will be things like hellknights, greymaidens, and other interesting new orders and world-centered builds that do more than offer x armor proficiency boosts. Because Armor in PF2 is supposed to be meaningful beyond "its all the same how you get to +5, and, right now, that happens primarily through access. If that means that we will start to see some specific orders of armored casters built into the world, I am much happier to see that happen with narrative purpose than generic "battle mage" archetypes. If the specific ones don't line up for what you want to play in your home games, than I am hopeful that the GMG is going to help make it really easy to understand how to modify classes and archetypes, just like you can modify monsters and items to tell the specific story that you want to tell. PFS on the other hand, is going to be rooted heavily in Golarion lore so I hope it is pretty strict about having builds make sense to the stories being told.


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Unicore wrote:

I don't think the armor archetypes will be "this class but with armor." I think they will be things like hellknights, greymaidens, and other interesting new orders and world-centered builds that do more than offer x armor proficiency boosts. Because Armor in PF2 is supposed to be meaningful beyond "its all the same how you get to +5, and, right now, that happens primarily through access. If that means that we will start to see some specific orders of armored casters built into the world, I am much happier to see that happen with narrative purpose than generic "battle mage" archetypes. If the specific ones don't line up for what you want to play in your home games, than I am hopeful that the GMG is going to help make it really easy to understand how to modify classes and archetypes, just like you can modify monsters and items to tell the specific story that you want to tell. PFS on the other hand, is going to be rooted heavily in Golarion lore so I hope it is pretty strict about having builds make sense to the stories being told.

That just brings us back to where we are right now with the Champion, where you have to take on all this extra baggage just to get the armor you want. You shouldn't have to go join a secret order to learn how to strap metal to your body in a way that isn't useless, you should only be joining those secret orders if you want other things from them as well.

And it just keeps circling back to armor proficiency, even when it's scaling, just not being worth a class feat by itself, much less a dedication that's going to trip up your multiclassing. It's JUST armor, it's not the secret to immortality or some sacred rite. It's mundane, it has a fairly minor effect mechanically. It should not be gated behind all this other crap, because it makes it frustrating to build character concepts and it devalues those more flavorful archetypes tied to organizations as something someone just takes for the armor.

And, of course, those organizations are not something guaranteed. Pathfinder is not supposed to be only playable in Golarian, or even just one part of Golarian. There's no guarantee that every setting is going to have Hellknights so that you can learn to use heavy armor. There has to be setting-neutral ways to get that proficiency without it mucking up the other setting.

That's not to say those archetypes shouldn't exist, they very much should and should be requiring or granting armor proficiencies (in which case they might say something like "if you are already trained/expert/proficient in medium armor, you may instead gain a general feat" so as to not screw out martial classes too much). But they shouldn't be the primary means by which classes are expected to get armor proficiency, the armor proficiency should be incidental to their value. Hellknights wouldn't be just about granting heavy armor proficiency because that'd be lame as hell, they should be granting access to Hellknight armor specifically, along with all of their other supernatural shenanigans. They can exist alongside a buffed Armor Proficiency feat.


Well, one thing we know from people who have the Lost Omens World Guide PDF is that archetypes like the Swordlord and the Red Mantis Assassin do key your proficiency advancement in the signature item to the advancement your class gives in comparable items.

So the way we can redeem the "training only" general feat is via those kinds of dedications which are going to give both "advancement" and more stuff beyond that (the swordlord one reportedly gives 3 skill increases, which can move you from trained to expert.)

But for more general things like armor, we can either do more general things as archetypes (I mean, one of them in the APG is "Pirate"), or we can print a bunch of different "specific group" archetypes and eventually one of them will cover every character. Being in the Hellknights should preclude you from needing the "Heavy Armor" dedication, but it doesn't mean the latter shouldn't exist.


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Helmic wrote:


There has to be setting-neutral ways to get that proficiency without it mucking up the other setting.

There is. It is called build your own, because the system is incredibly flexible and modular.

Wearing armor is only "useless" when you are untrained in it. Otherwise it might be less effective than another armor option but it is not useless, and what armor your character wears is a function of class first, by long standing tradition of the Fantasy RPG genre. What seems to have folks upset is that PF2 has loosened this up significantly, but doesn't have the pieces in place yet for all possible builds to make sense, and they won't waste their time trying to make builds work that are not going to fit into their campaign setting. Luckily, it shouldn't be hard to mod it for your own needs.

If your goal is to play a character that can use any weapon or any armor as well as anyone alive, there are specific classes for that.


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Unicore wrote:

There is. It is called build your own, because the system is incredibly flexible and modular.

Wearing armor is only "useless" when you are untrained in it. Otherwise it might be less effective than another armor option but it is not useless, and what armor your character wears is a function of class first, by long standing tradition of the Fantasy RPG genre. What seems to have folks upset is that PF2 has loosened this up significantly, but doesn't have the pieces in place yet for all possible builds to make sense, and they won't waste their time trying to make builds work that are not going to fit into their campaign setting. Luckily, it shouldn't be hard to mod it for your own needs.

If your goal is to play a character that can use any weapon or any armor as well as anyone alive, there are specific classes for that.

A GM 100% should not have to be building entire archetypes on their own just to fulfill extremely basic player options. Not every GM is a talented game designer, if we could build our own archetypes we wouldn't need Paizo's stuff. That stuff requires playtesting, time, a lot of system mastery with an intimidate understanding of progression in particular. That is something someone should be able to do, sure, but it shouldn't be something a GM HAS to do in order to make a different setting have an option so that people can strap metal to their chest.

The rest of that is stuff that I went over in several other posts in another thread - it's about as meaningful as saying a broom isn't a useless weapon because you can use it improvised. Not getting +level to your AC will get you critted. PF2 is fundamentally NOT a game for those that believe the Stormwind fallacy isn't a fallacy, the system is designed so that what is optimal and what matches your character concept can as closely align as possible.

More specifically, being trained/expert in all armor is far, far, far from using it "as well as anyone alive." It is not the weight of your armor that determines your defenses, it is your proficiency progression. A wizard will never, ever compete with a Chapmion or Fighter no matter how many types of armor they're proficient in. To say otherwise is to fundamentally misunderstand the proficiency system.

Liberty's Edge

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I'm with Helmic on the need for something more generic than 'Grey Maiden' and 'Hellknight' options. One option for all armor doesn't seem quite right, with more specific stuff necessary, but we need some non flavor-locked options for Armor Archetypes.

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