Healing, Clerics, and HP as a resource


Rules Discussion


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Every caster class except Sorcerer/Wizard and Cleric has access to a form of "infinite" healing. The champion and monk have access as well to a form of unlimited healing.

Why is Divine Font stuck in this odd-place as per-day ability? It's essentially just Turn Undead from earlier editions, meanwhile Bardic Music, Rages, Wild Shapes, Ki Powers, Lay on Hands, etc. are all now essentially unlimited either without qualification or via Focus Pool spells.

Between Focus spells such as Lay on Hands, Wholeness of Body, Soothing Ballade and the use of Treat Wounds; HP should be viewed (essentially) as an encounter resource.

While it is possible to not have the needed time to fully heal-up and Refocus between Encounters, I contend that entering a Moderate or Severe challenge fight in PF2 with no Focus Points and already sub-maximal HP will quickly result in numerous Unconscious/Dying PCs. Given the ease of access (even via Skills that anyone can take) to HP recovery, the intention then is to more or less treat HP as an Encounter resource to be utilized during the Encounter to avoid going to Dying and then restored promptly post-combat with little overall resource loss.

Why then, in this environment is the Cleric the only class noted above who has no option for any sort of "Encounter" or "Focusable" healing other than taking the Medicine skill?

The response of "to free the Cleric of the burden is healing" is a bad argument. For starters, the game has clearly made it easy to play numerous other characters that can heal, so that already alleviates the Cleric of that responsibility. Secondly, the class gains specific access to special Healing-centered powers and feats clearly indicating this is a thing they are supposed to be able to be good at. Lastly, many players enjoy being a healer and the cleric has a long tradition of being that go-to class for such players.


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber

I wouldn't really call it turn undead, so much as channel, and you have a number of them equal to 1+charisma that are always heightened. I think that's a decent amount of heal or harm.


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Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Sometimes a cleric just needs to unload some in-combat heals, and it'd be nice if they didn't have to spend all of their focus on it.

I do sort of like how healing clerics can actually care about medicine now. In PF1, taking the Heal skill was always a bit of a waste as a cleric, especially given their low number of skill points.

It's also nice that Focus can be used to reinforce the cleric's deity flavor, rather than just spending it on generic channeling.


They may get some sort of focus spell for healing from a domain power in time. But honestly turning healing font from a bunch of extra heightened spells into a focus spell ability would be a huge nerf. Almost all those other abilities are limited in their per encounter use because they require the active use of focus points. Which for most of an adventurers career means 1 a fight, less if they can’t take time between, with maybe a burst of a few more once a day. They also all heal less than an equivalent leveled Heal. Maybe in theory you’d get more of the others off in combat, but then you’re having them constantly and other resources are running low. Plus each of the others have other things they’d probably rather use those focus points on.

At most the cleric doesn’t have a built in feature for out of combat healing, while having the clear best in combat heal. But non of the others except champions have it built in either, it’s an option the classes can choose to have by investing. And the medicine skill and related feats are there for anyone willing to invest in them.


Channel is a monster amount of healing. 1+CHA is a good spot for that power. It was 3+ in the playtest and it was so much as to dwarf the amount of healing you could get from any two other sources combined.

The "infinite healing" you are claiming isn't actually infinite. Focus comes back at the max rate of 1 point per 10 minutes, and 6 hp isn't that much. Yes, that's 864 over the course of one day, but you need to sleep too. That drops it down to 576. But you're probably not able to actually use the power every 10 minutes. Lets cut that down to once every 30 on average because you're doing other things too. 192 hp.

192 is probably enough to fully heal a 10th level fighter one and a half times.

Lets look at Channel. Er, Divine Font.

For 2 actions at 10th level you can heal one person for 5d8+40 or about 62hp. That's almost eleven uses of Lay on Hands (110 minutes!)

How many does the cleric get every day? Well, if they're not completely antisocial, 3-4 (a 14 or 16 CHA). 186 or 248 healing every day.

What if they go 3-action? 5d8 * targets. We'll assume a party of 4 and that we only get 3 people's worth of full healing each time (someone wasn't hurt, they were out of range, otherwise didn't get full benefit), average 67hp. Gosh, that's actually better than the 2 action version!


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Draco18s wrote:

Channel is a monster amount of healing. 1+CHA is a good spot for that power. It was 3+ in the playtest and it was so much as to dwarf the amount of healing you could get from any two other sources combined.

The "infinite healing" you are claiming isn't actually infinite. Focus comes back at the max rate of 1 point per 10 minutes, and 6 hp isn't that much. Yes, that's 864 over the course of one day, but you need to sleep too. That drops it down to 576. But you're probably not able to actually use the power every 10 minutes. Lets cut that down to once every 30 on average because you're doing other things too. 192 hp.

192 is probably enough to fully heal a 10th level fighter one and a half times.

Lets look at Channel. Er, Divine Font.

For 2 actions at 10th level you can heal one person for 5d8+40 or about 62hp. That's almost eleven uses of Lay on Hands (110 minutes!)

How many does the cleric get every day? Well, if they're not completely antisocial, 3-4 (a 14 or 16 CHA). 186 or 248 healing every day.

What if they go 3-action? 5d8 * targets. We'll assume a party of 4 and that we only get 3 people's worth of full healing each time (someone wasn't hurt, they were out of range, otherwise didn't get full benefit), average 67hp. Gosh, that's actually better than the 2 action version!

Um, Lay on Hands scales too (6 HP for every level it is heightened). At 9th level, it'll restore 30 HP per use.


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Lay on Hands heightens too. At 10th level you would be healing 30.


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Whoops, I missed that when I was looking things up.

I feel dumb now.


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It heals 30, but that’s still half of what you can expect from the spell at the same level. And that spell can be used repeatedly in the same combat without issue, or not at all if it’s in needed, giving it better flexibility. The lay on hands advantage is that the champion doesn’t need to also invest in out of combat healing, since the focus spell does the work for them, though it doesn’t quite catch up to someone dedicated to that either.

Liberty's Edge

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The healing from a max level Heal spell actually outpaces enemy damage for the most part. That makes Clerics the preeminent in-combat healers, which is what Divine Font is intended for. And being the best in-combat healers in the game is legitimately great and allows all sorts of neat stuff.

For out of combat healing, a Cleric can easily (and, indeed, is pretty incentivized to) take Medicine like anyone else who wants unlimited healing and isn't a Champion.


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The cleric has bar none the best in combat healing in the game. It having inferior out of combat options seems like a point of balance, not a mistake.

It's the Sorcerer that's shortchanged here, they don't have either a refreshable focus heal or a pool of extra healing like Font. Halo pales in comparison to those options.

It also feels weird to say that everyone else has infinite free healing and not mention that Ballad doesn't come online until level 14 or that Goodberry takes an hour to cast, as those are pretty significant limiting factors.


eer...

Since you're comparing stuff like powers gained at later levels:

the advanced domain power Rebuke Death, does offer "infinite healing" exactly like those powers you mentioned?


The cleric doesn't even need to dedicate that many resources to the Medicine skill because the only essential use of it is out of combat healing for them. All other casters are going to be relying on Medicine for a lot more and have to advance the skill past trained, but a Cleric really doesn't need anything more from the medicine skill than treat wounds out of combat. I'd say that puts them in pretty great shape because relying on the other classes for combat healing is actually a pretty big gamble.


Put another way....

Why is rage no longer a x/day mechanic? Why are lay on hands and wholeness of body focus spells instead of x/day abilities?

I’m just wondering why this singular mechanic was chosen to be limited in use and scope.


shroudb wrote:

eer...

Since you're comparing stuff like powers gained at later levels:

the advanced domain power Rebuke Death, does offer "infinite healing" exactly like those powers you mentioned?

Currently playing a cleric of Sarenrae and considering which domains to take I think that Positive Luminance (Sun) is a worthy contender to Rebuke Death (Healing), especially when it comes to ooc heals.

Rebuke Death at 4: 3 x 10.5 = 31.5
Positive Luminance at 4: 10 x 4 = 40

Rebuke Death at 10: 3 x 31.5 = 94.5
Positive Luminance at 10: 10 x 10 = 100

Rebuke Death lets you hit multiple targets for small amounts and instantly for up to 3 actions but does not have any other uses. Positive Luminance needs 10 rounds until reaching its full potential, and is single target only, however it also has pretty fine offensive uses vs undead.


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Ubertron_X wrote:
shroudb wrote:

eer...

Since you're comparing stuff like powers gained at later levels:

the advanced domain power Rebuke Death, does offer "infinite healing" exactly like those powers you mentioned?

Currently playing a cleric of Sarenrae and considering which domains to take I think that Positive Luminance (Sun) is a worthy contender to Rebuke Death (Healing), especially when it comes to ooc heals.

Rebuke Death at 4: 3 x 10.5 = 31.5
Positive Luminance at 4: 10 x 4 = 40

Rebuke Death at 10: 3 x 31.5 = 94.5
Positive Luminance at 10: 10 x 10 = 100

Rebuke Death lets you hit multiple targets for small amounts and instantly for up to 3 actions but does not have any other uses. Positive Luminance needs 10 rounds until reaching its full potential, and is single target only, however it also has pretty fine offensive uses vs undead.

probably. Haven't looked that far into cleric domains, that was just from the top of my head.

was just commenting on the "the cleric has no focus power that heals" part.


AsmodeusDM wrote:

Put another way....

Why is rage no longer a x/day mechanic? Why are lay on hands and wholeness of body focus spells instead of x/day abilities?

I’m just wondering why this singular mechanic was chosen to be limited in use and scope.

because max spell level Heals are much more powerful than focus heals?

and as pointed above, the cleric DOES have options for focus based healing.

In a sense, you could be asking "why does cleric STILL has free Heals/day at all and not just the focus based he already has access to?"


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Then you add healers blessing. That adds more healing.

Then if you want to really add more healing you can pick up the sorcerer bloodline picking up angelic halo, you can heal an make your divine font even better. Then throw on the Staff of Healing.

So I am ok with the cleric getting only 1 + Cha.

Then with the addition of godless healing in the game Battle medic will be nicer.

Also I think Paizo wanted to reduce the dependency on magic healing. That is why treat deadly wounds is so nice and useful


I did miss rebuke death; but that’s not the crux of my point.

My point is about the nature of the games design, understanding hit points as a resource/tension mechanic and how this divine font ability interacts with that.

Let’s rephrase it.

Why does the cleric get a bunch of random extra Heals?

They are fundamentally a full caster and similar to the wizard and sorcerer and druid, they have options to get focus spells just like the wizard or sorcerer or Druid . The wizard doesn’t get bonus auto-leveled magic missiles, nor the sorcerer. The Druid doesn’t get 1+Cha free charm animals per day.

As has been pointed out a lot; the game doesn’t require a cleric to function and Plenty of other healing options exist.

Indeed the existence of this ability is highly variable. A cleric (perhaps more focused on strength and con) might only have 1 or 2 heals, whereas a different cleric with 18 cha could even have 5 bonus heals.

This is unlike any other mechanic in the game.

Even classes with a so called “secondary” stat (wis for monks or cha for champions) are only impacted by that stat if they choose to invest class feats in power and abilities that key off that secondary stat.

So then why is this ability here and why does it operate on an entirely different axis then the rest of the game?


Champions get an ability that depends on cha automatically. If everything followed the same format that would be super boring… not everything should be focus, focus is a specific thing.

But yeah low level warpriest are op compared to other casters. They fall back at high levels because spells become more important so the lower DC matters, but they're still great.

Cloistered cleric trades extra heals for Dex, meaning they have even lower Ac, they still are better than sorcerers and wizards at low levels, but the difference isn't too extreme. Well it might be too much, but I like spontaneous casting a lot more than prepared with the divine list.

Clerics definitely seem better off, but I feel like they aren't too far ahead… maybe they are…


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
AsmodeusDM wrote:

I did miss rebuke death; but that’s not the crux of my point.

My point is about the nature of the games design, understanding hit points as a resource/tension mechanic and how this divine font ability interacts with that.

Let’s rephrase it.

Why does the cleric get a bunch of random extra Heals?

They are fundamentally a full caster and similar to the wizard and sorcerer and druid, they have options to get focus spells just like the wizard or sorcerer or Druid . The wizard doesn’t get bonus auto-leveled magic missiles, nor the sorcerer. The Druid doesn’t get 1+Cha free charm animals per day.

As has been pointed out a lot; the game doesn’t require a cleric to function and Plenty of other healing options exist.

Indeed the existence of this ability is highly variable. A cleric (perhaps more focused on strength and con) might only have 1 or 2 heals, whereas a different cleric with 18 cha could even have 5 bonus heals.

This is unlike any other mechanic in the game.

Even classes with a so called “secondary” stat (wis for monks or cha for champions) are only impacted by that stat if they choose to invest class feats in power and abilities that key off that secondary stat.

So then why is this ability here and why does it operate on an entirely different axis then the rest of the game?

I see what your point about the ability operating on an entirely axis then the rest of the game. I agree to a point that I don't like it because a lot of the new design was to go away from trackable resources. But the cleric has always been known as the main healer. So what else would you do to help with this? Maybe give them a battle medic ability that is a lesser unlimited use or maybe have a restriction on how often you can use it? Or maybe even make it Ito a focus spell that is slightly different then Heal itself?

I was never a fan of the cleric having to have both wisdom (spells) and charisma (channels) in 1E. Still not a fan of it in 2E.

I also feel like it was a poorly thought out concept. They could have fit it in the format, made it not super boring and yet fun. I know a lot of people who played clerics that didn't focus on healing or care for channeling (I though they were a bit crazy) so I feel like this would have been a great doctrine or even make it into a focus spell not pithing a domain.


AsmodeusDM wrote:


Let’s rephrase it.

Why does the cleric get a bunch of random extra Heals?

They are fundamentally a full caster and similar to the wizard and sorcerer and druid, they have options to get focus spells just like the wizard or sorcerer or Druid . The wizard doesn’t get bonus auto-leveled magic missiles, nor the sorcerer. The Druid doesn’t get 1+Cha free charm animals per day.

Because being the others "healbot" is an elementary but ungrateful job? Because everybody wants to be a Ronaldo or a Messi (strikers) but almost no one wants to be a Buffon (keeper)?

If cleric is expected to be the main in-combat healer but does not have extra heals his daily spell list will most likely look like this: 1st all cure light wounds, 2nd all cure moderate wounds, 3rd all cure serious wounds, 4th all cure critical wounds...

Been there, done that, namely in 2nd edition.

Also and on a more technical level regarding game design please keep in mind that one of the clerics primarily duties was and is to fight the undead and he always had special powers to do so (e.g. turn undead / command undead). So when 3rd edition went live the need to unclog the cleric daily spell list and the need to still keep his powers to fight the undead were cleverly merged into an extra healing / extra damage (to undead) ability called channel energy.

The extra heals that we see today serve the same purpose. First to allow the class to keep some flexibility instead of being relegated to a pure healbot, second to honor the tradition as the go-to class when it comes to fighting the undead.


I like this line of reasoning, however, in the presence of so many other healing options I don’t think the cleric would ever be relegated to the role of healbot. In earlier editions if the cleric didn’t take Cure spells then short of consumable items you weren’t getting back HP. In this edition they finally broke that reliance by including numerous options for healing including renewable non-magical healing in Treat Wounds.

Additionally, the cleric is just one class of 12 so it’s a safe assumption that the game wasn’t designed to presume that you’ll have access to the clerics level of healing during an encounter, right?

Also maybe I’ve been playing for a longtime but Paladins also always had Turn Undead and I think of them as just as much anti undead as a cleric (maybe even more so) but they don’t have any kind of turn/channel ability.

In the best case situation of game design a player should feel excited to do their thing, even if it’s healing another player.

Also as a limited resource you are highly incentivized to get the most out of it; when I first read the Heal spell I was excited to see the three action modes. But in play I’ve found that anyone with access to Heal really tries not to use the single action version because it’s almost a waste of Heal slot given the low healing potential. This is a problem that only gets worse as the game goes on at level 1 it’s d8 vs d8+8 a difference of (duh) 8 average. But by 4th it’s 32 different and 7th 56 etc. so as the game goes on it’ll be even more pointless to use the single action Heal.


As a quick aside:

The best implementation of healing I've seen in a game has been in the 4th edition of D&D. If you aren't familiar, any class classified as a "Leader" got access to a special kind of healing power.

In 4e you had daily powers (aka 1/day) and encounter powers (aka 1/encounter or 1/5mins). But the healing powers were a bit different; they were 2/encounter (instead of the usual 1) and eventually became 3/encounter.

Additionally, similiar to PF1 you had your Standard Action, Move Action, and a Minor(Swift) action. All the healing powers were Minor actions. Meaning a healer character (such as the cleric) could still move, attack, and heal someone.

The wonky bit about 4e (that many people throughly disliked) was that your ability to be healed was tied to Healing Surges; everytime you got healed, it cost you a healing surge. When you were out of healing surges you (essentially) could no longer regain hit points. This meant that even though the cleric got two free heal spells every fight (or every 5 minutes) they couldn't just heal people up to full forever because after a few cycles of this you and your party members would be out of Healing Surges and no longer able to benefit from Healing.

However....

PF2e has turned the head on this paradigm.

All prior mainstream RPGs have always treated HP as a essentially limited resource. In old-school games you only got HP back from magical spells or items during the course of the day; in PF1/3.x you had CLW wands but it was still somewhat tied to the idea of a fundamentally limited resource.

PF2e is the first mainstream game that essentially says you can heal up to full as many times as you'd like throughout the day; as long as you have the time to do so.

Healing abilities in Focus Pools and mainly the Treat Wounds skill ability really speak to the ability for a party of adventurers to really "go all day." In fact, if you had a power consisting of say a Fighter, Ranger, Monk, and Champion they would never theoretically need to stop adventuring except due to the need for the mortal body to sleep.

Thus it's strange to me that a party above can "keep the healing and adventuring going" all day. Meanwhile, a party with a Cleric (and perhaps no one with Treat Wounds) would run out of hit point recovery after 1 or 2 encounters and need to "rest up" for the day.

That problem also speaks to Treat Wounds/Medicine probably being almost a skill tax (as I'm also sure that 90% of parties will have at least one person with Ward Medic and Continual Recovery), it's like the new Perception.

Also even the name of the ability: Divine Font suggests to me a pool or resource of your deity's energy; a basin to be emptied and re-filled.

Instead of being tied to Charisma I would have preferred Divine Font simply operate as follows:

You have a special separate Focus Pool (the game already kinda does this with Positive Luminance spell). It starts at 2 points and lets you cast an auto-heightened Heal spell. You can Refocus by spending 10 minutes in prayer/meditation as your divine connection refills your energy to regain 1 points.

You could of course create feats to improve and enhance this special pool (instead of silly stupid trap feats like Healing Hands).

If there's a concern about the use of spamming Harms you could include a little addendum.

Special: If the Divine Font pool is used to cast a Harm spell instead of a Heal spell the maximum points available in the pool is also reduced by 1 until the next time you make daily preparations.


AsmodeusDM wrote:
Additionally, the cleric is just one class of 12 so it’s a safe assumption that the game wasn’t designed to presume that you’ll have access to the clerics level of healing during an encounter, right?

"Standard" group composition has been, is, and will always be: Fighter, Cleric, Rogue, Wizard.

I don't know about PF2, but man, trying something other than a cleric as the main (combat) healer really pushed your meta-gaming skills to the limit during any fights in any 3.x edition. Comparing to chess when before you could be playing as beginners you now needed to play like grand masters in order to prevail.

We occasionally tried groups with a druid but usually they straggled quite hard. Oracle did ok though.


Ubertron_X wrote:
"Standard" group composition has been, is, and will always be: Fighter, Cleric, Rogue, Wizard.

It's no more true. You can go adventuring with none of these class and be ok. And clearly, most adventuring group don't have all four of them.

Ubertron_X wrote:

I don't know about PF2, but man, trying something other than a cleric as the main (combat) healer really pushed your meta-gaming skills to the limit during any fights in any 3.x edition. Comparing to chess when before you could be playing as beginners you now needed to play like grand masters in order to prevail.

We occasionally tried groups with a druid but usually they straggled quite hard. Oracle did ok though.

In PF2, Druids are excellent healers, as are some Bards, Sorcerers and Alchemists. The main difference is that healing is always included in a Cleric's abilities, when the other classes have to choose the proper spells/elixirs at the beginning of the day. So, a Cleric can heal and do whatever he wants, when the other classes have to sacrifice part of their spells to include more healing.


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The clerics divine font ability fills some of the same design space as the wizards arcane bond, it doesn’t have as much flexibility but it gets more uses. So it’s not really as much an outlier as it seems. And there are plenty of other abilities that exist in a similar space. Just not identical which is good for character diversity. And it’s existence opens up some design space for the cleric. Channel smite wouldn’t work without a surplus of heal and harms, same for healing and harming hands.


SuperBidi wrote:
Ubertron_X wrote:
"Standard" group composition has been, is, and will always be: Fighter, Cleric, Rogue, Wizard.
It's no more true. You can go adventuring with none of these class and be ok. And clearly, most adventuring group don't have all four of them.

You got me wrong. I did not want to state that this is the must-have group, but this has been the generic/iconic group since ages so it is not wrong to assume that the difficulties of fights within adventures may have been based on a similar group/role composition.

Tank/melee/ranged, ranged/melee/utility, healing/melee, magic/ranged.

Barbarian, Bard, Oracle and Sorcerer would be close.


Lightwire wrote:
The clerics divine font ability fills some of the same design space as the wizards arcane bond, it doesn’t have as much flexibility but it gets more uses. So it’s not really as much an outlier as it seems. And there are plenty of other abilities that exist in a similar space. Just not identical which is good for character diversity. And it’s existence opens up some design space for the cleric. Channel smite wouldn’t work without a surplus of heal and harms, same for healing and harming hands.

Harm and Heal are very different from other forms of healing magic. It really probably is best to think of the Cleric's primary schtick as being "the ability to channel positive or negative energy in many different and interesting ways" rather than as "healbot." By 10th level a cleric can have a lot of options opening up as far as manipulating this ability both offensively and in support.


Well. Play a cleric and see.

Over half the feats in the clerics lineup require you to spend Heal or Harm spells to trigger or use them.

After 1 or 2 encounters when you are out of heals and now your class feats don’t work, meanwhile everyone else has their full capacity of powers and abilities; see how much fun that plays out.

Or maybe you all just play constant 15 minute adventuring days, in which case.... yeah cleric is fine, probably OP.


AsmodeusDM wrote:

Well. Play a cleric and see.

Over half the feats in the clerics lineup require you to spend Heal or Harm spells to trigger or use them.

After 1 or 2 encounters when you are out of heals and now your class feats don’t work, meanwhile everyone else has their full capacity of powers and abilities; see how much fun that plays out.

Or maybe you all just play constant 15 minute adventuring days, in which case.... yeah cleric is fine, probably OP.

Will do as I am currently playing the cleric in our Age of Ashes campaign.

Regarding class feats "eating up" heals this may be true, but I guess it very much depends if you want be play an active or a reactive cleric.

If I wanted to play a warpriest and like to "shine" myself, then yes any "smite" abilities will likely eat up all my heals pretty fast. If however I play a reactive cleric, making my group shine instead because I simply keep them going for as long as possible, then my heals will probably be enough for at least 3 to 4 encounters.

I am planning to develop my cleric along the later path and according to my current considerations will not take a single feat that burns any heals until I can rely on a focus heal.

2nd: Domain Initiate (1st focus point)
4th: Domain Initiate (2nd focus point)
6th: Selective Energy
8th: Advanced Domain (3rd focus point) and "endless" healing ability via domain spell (either Healing or Sun domain).

A battle cleric usually warrants a second healer in the group, a situation not unlike when if your fighter is specializing in bows and you suddenly need an additional tank/melee .


I’m interested to see how builds play out, but I wonder how many clerics will follow almost the same route as yours; stacking focus powers ASAP to get to 3 focus points and several spells as quickly as possible.

My guess is a lot.

Also I’m interested in learning more from folks about what their in combat experiences are like. We don’t do APs normally (too linear) but because we are new we are playing plaguestone.

At level 1 when the higher go folk had about 20 to 22 hps they fought several ordinary encounters where the monsters did 18 damage per round.

At level 2 they fought some bushes and one crit on an air attack and did like 22 to almost the whole group... and the. The other 2 bushes in the encounter put out another 20 damage or so.

Maybe our experience is different; but seems to me like hps drop really fast in this game. Our feeling is that without a constant supply of in combat healing you are pretty much out of action after 2 or 3 hits, to say nothing of if the enemy gets a crit.


AsmodeusDM wrote:

I’m interested to see how builds play out, but I wonder how many clerics will follow almost the same route as yours; stacking focus powers ASAP to get to 3 focus points and several spells as quickly as possible.

My guess is a lot.

Also I’m interested in learning more from folks about what their in combat experiences are like. We don’t do APs normally (too linear) but because we are new we are playing plaguestone.

At level 1 when the higher go folk had about 20 to 22 hps they fought several ordinary encounters where the monsters did 18 damage per round.

At level 2 they fought some bushes and one crit on an air attack and did like 22 to almost the whole group... and the. The other 2 bushes in the encounter put out another 20 damage or so.

Maybe our experience is different; but seems to me like hps drop really fast in this game. Our feeling is that without a constant supply of in combat healing you are pretty much out of action after 2 or 3 hits, to say nothing of if the enemy gets a crit.

That may be because of leftover tendencies of PF1.

Building glass cannons isn't worth it in Pf2, while in PF1 you ended encounters in 1 round, that wont work here.

New players trying to go for a 3rd attack instead of raising a shield and etc.
People staying still in the thick of it to squeeze a bit extra damage instead of moving away.
People not bothering with trips and grabs because it doesn't do damage.

The monsters beat a bit of sense to them after a few encounters though^^

In combat healing, especially from Clerics is godsend, but you don't need to spam it usually.

The free heals alone, without any investment apart from a respectable Cha score (and maybe a low level staff later on), are usually enough for a party.

IF you invest on them, it just frees up other resources/actions to do with them.


My group is pretty good about keeping their shields raised; quickly recognizing that with a lot of the creatures having over +10 to hit and ACs above 18 that the third attack (and usually the second attack) just isn't worth it.

But even with a shield raised the AC 21 fighter is still getting hit over 50% of the time from the +11 to-hit creature dealing 1d8+4+d6 acid wolves.

Also moving away is fine; but only if your movement is better than the creatures.

Also with no attacks of opportunity it's very easy for me to move the monsters around the battlefield with impunity, set up flanks pretty much every turn and focus fire down individual PCs.


+11 to hit and 18 damage sounds like a level 3 or 4 enemy. Level 1 characters taking a lot of damage from enemies several levels higher from them seems standard.


Long story short, not sure if I'll ever be able to wrap my head around the idea that a cleric can cast dozens of dozens of Appearance of Wealth spells per day; but somehow is only casting a handful of Heal spells.


swoosh wrote:
+11 to hit and 18 damage sounds like a level 3 or 4 enemy. Level 1 characters taking a lot of damage from enemies several levels higher from them seems standard.

Shrug... not sure what the level of the monster was. Just know they were in the first encounter of the adventure and also used several additional times throughout part 1 and 2


AsmodeusDM wrote:

Well. Play a cleric and see.

Over half the feats in the clerics lineup require you to spend Heal or Harm spells to trigger or use them.

After 1 or 2 encounters when you are out of heals and now your class feats don’t work, meanwhile everyone else has their full capacity of powers and abilities; see how much fun that plays out.

Or maybe you all just play constant 15 minute adventuring days, in which case.... yeah cleric is fine, probably OP.

Sure a lot of the cleric feats make use of or modify the divine font ability, but there are also others you can take if you like. Nothing is forcing you to use divine font as anything but a bunch of spells in your back pocket, and I’d wager you’d still end up with an enjoyable character. Personally I don’t have an issue with having 3+ extra uses of something equitable to a max level spell. Modified in the way that strikes my personal fancy. And after I run through those, we’ll I'm still a full caster who might be a reasonably dangerous martial combatant. I don’t think I’m going to run out of juice until long after any other caster does.

Any caster has the same issue on limited use things per day. And honestly I don’t think any of them are as well off as the cleric is in this regard.


AsmodeusDM wrote:
swoosh wrote:
+11 to hit and 18 damage sounds like a level 3 or 4 enemy. Level 1 characters taking a lot of damage from enemies several levels higher from them seems standard.
Shrug... not sure what the level of the monster was. Just know they were in the first encounter of the adventure and also used several additional times throughout part 1 and 2

the particular encounter you mention is a "challenging" encounter using 1 boss monster (the acid wolf) and a few low level mook wolves.

the mooks shouldn't give any trouble from what i remember, and you should then gang up on the boss, which while damaging, can go down fairly quickly.

Remember, it's still early levels, and the philosophy of PF2 for early "mooks" is:

"they deal damage, but go down easily as well, so as to have them being challenging and not just damage sponges"

That is a design decision (early level minions= higher attack+damage for their level, but lower defenses) of the edition.


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Lightwire wrote:


Sure a lot of the cleric feats make use of or modify the divine font ability, but there are also others you can take if you like. Nothing is forcing you to use divine font as anything but a bunch of spells in your back pocket, and I’d wager you’d still end up with an enjoyable character. Personally I don’t have an issue with having 3+ extra uses of something equitable to a max level spell. Modified in the way that strikes my personal fancy. And after I run through those, we’ll I'm still a full caster who might be a reasonably dangerous martial combatant. I don’t think I’m going to run out of juice until long after any other caster does.

Any caster has the same issue on limited use things per day. And honestly I don’t think any of them are as well off as the cleric is in this regard.

Well and that's why I'm trying to figure out what gives:

The Cleric in Pathfinder 2e is essentially the same class as the cleric from PF1. You get some armor and weapon proficiences, reasonable hit points, meh number of skill choices. You are a full caster and then you get some number of Channel Energy/Divine font abilities to heal the party and/or do damage to undead.

I don't understand how that's balanced (or fun) against a Druid who no longer has a limit on their wild shapes per day or a Barbarian who can rage every encounter or a bard who can use bardic music over and over again or a monk who can now (potentially) dimensionally leap every encounter.

Like pretend you were converting a party of 5th-level PCs from 1st ed. to 2nd ed.

"Barbarian! You can rage now every fight; and it lasts for 1 minute each time. No more tracking rounds of rage; just go ham dude"

"Druid! Remember how you could only wild shape once per day? Well guess what now you can wild shape; and as long as you have time minutes to regain your druid power you can wild shape again. You can do it dozens of times each day!"

"What about me???", says the cleric.

"Well remember how you had armor and 3rd level spells?"

"yes!"

"you still have those!"

"Okay, awesome"

"And remmber how you had channel energy and you could use it 3+your CHA modificer per day?"

"Yup, what is it now???"

" ONE plus your CHA modifier per day!"

"ummmm.... okay... and what else????"

"Ummm.... nothing... that's it. I mean you get a bunch of class feats; but so does everyone else. Actually because you're a caster you get 1 less class feat than the non-casters because..."

"Ohh okay. Can I remake as anything else please?"


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AsmodeusDM wrote:
Lightwire wrote:


Sure a lot of the cleric feats make use of or modify the divine font ability, but there are also others you can take if you like. Nothing is forcing you to use divine font as anything but a bunch of spells in your back pocket, and I’d wager you’d still end up with an enjoyable character. Personally I don’t have an issue with having 3+ extra uses of something equitable to a max level spell. Modified in the way that strikes my personal fancy. And after I run through those, we’ll I'm still a full caster who might be a reasonably dangerous martial combatant. I don’t think I’m going to run out of juice until long after any other caster does.

Any caster has the same issue on limited use things per day. And honestly I don’t think any of them are as well off as the cleric is in this regard.

Well and that's why I'm trying to figure out what gives:

The Cleric in Pathfinder 2e is essentially the same class as the cleric from PF1. You get some armor and weapon proficiences, reasonable hit points, meh number of skill choices. You are a full caster and then you get some number of Channel Energy/Divine font abilities to heal the party and/or do damage to undead.

I don't understand how that's balanced (or fun) against a Druid who no longer has a limit on their wild shapes per day or a Barbarian who can rage every encounter or a bard who can use bardic music over and over again or a monk who can now (potentially) dimensionally leap every encounter.

Like pretend you were converting a party of 5th-level PCs from 1st ed. to 2nd ed.

"Barbarian! You can rage now every fight; and it lasts for 1 minute each time. No more tracking rounds of rage; just go ham dude"

"Druid! Remember how you could only wild shape once per day? Well guess what now you can wild shape; and as long as you have time minutes to regain your druid power you can wild shape again. You can do it dozens of times each day!"

"What about me???", says the cleric.

"Well remember how you had armor and 3rd...

"and you get renewable focus powers every encounter, like the rest of the party!"

why did you not put that in?

If your point of contention is "others have focus powers"

Cleric has the BIGGEST LIST of them to choose from.


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AsmodeusDM wrote:
"What about me???", says the cleric.

http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0001.html


@shroudb

True, in fact they have 10 pages of them to the rest of the entire book’s 12. Doesn’t seem like the rest of the classes are likely to out pace them any time soon.

@ AsmodeusDM

I don’t think I really understand the problem you’re having with all this. Clerics are casters that have several features that feed off of or modify a central pool, which they can choose to take or not. They can choose to have focus powers, or not. They can choose to be competent martialist, or not. They can focus on spells and saves, or not. They certainly can’t do all of these but no one else can either.

They have all the recognizable features of a 1e cleric but rebalanced and improved. Just like everyone else, with the exception of alchemist and sorcerers who got the most in depth rework. They’re still the best in combat healers, and if they aren’t the best out of combat healers, they weren’t before. That was the universal party member CLW, who lent his power to whoever felt like rolling a d20 and having a few points in the right skill. Sort of like medicine now.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Honestly Medicine is likely to be the forte of most healing focused Clerics as well. They are likely to have the highest Wisdom in the party and due to corresponding themes can use Treat Wounds and Refocus at the same time. Honestly being able to use Medicine rather than spell slots for out of combat healing feels like a win to me.


I guess that in a game where you get so many choices there is like one thing that every class gets that says “does not matter what you do, you do this”

All barbarians get Rage and it just.... works
All rangers get Hunt and it just works
Etc.

Clerics get Heals and ..... it’s limited and tied to Charisma.

Like I just don’t get it.

Like imagine if everything g else in the game was the same but change the Rangers Hunt to 1+int modifier per day. Wouldn’t you feel that it was odd and out of place?


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AsmodeusDM wrote:

I guess that in a game where you get so many choices there is like one thing that every class gets that says “does not matter what you do, you do this”

All barbarians get Rage and it just.... works
All rangers get Hunt and it just works
Etc.

Clerics get Heals and ..... it’s limited and tied to Charisma.

Like I just don’t get it.

Like imagine if everything g else in the game was the same but change the Rangers Hunt to 1+int modifier per day. Wouldn’t you feel that it was odd and out of place?

what's odd is that you're comparing a martial feature to a caster feature.

Every caster has the same resources:
cantrips: at will
spells: limited
focus: 10 min recover

Clerics have an ADDITIONAL pool of Heals over that.

i still fail to see the issue.

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