What is a "reasonable" post-fight downtime?


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The ShadowShackleton wrote:
But based on your new system it would appear it starts harder and gets easier? Shouldn’t the opposite be true?

The GM rolls not the players, edited the post to make that clear. This is consistent with PF2 - the GM rolls are challenged by the players DC.

If the GM succeeds at the lull die DC then random encounter. Long healing times pushes that DC counter down, so the GM is more likely succeed at getting the encounter. The players can get that lull die off the table by keeping to 10m breaks or pushing on after longer breaks.

Sovereign Court

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Ah ok that wasn’t as clear but makes more sense.


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I reposted here the lull DC over in the General PF2e section (did not see a houserule section)

https://paizo.com/threads/rzs42ria?Houserule-for-lull-DC-to-pace-random#1

might throw it to wolves on reddit since I have also seen others propose tension pools there.


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
SuperBidi wrote:
Kasoh wrote:

I saw this happen in a Dead Suns Starfinder game I ran that had no casters. They would clear every dungeon in one go, taking short rests to recover stamina.

I have to say, it felt pretty great. I didn't have high opinions on the difficulty of Starfinder in general afterwards, but as a play experience, the party was thrilled.

I play Dead Suns with my Mystic, I'm currently at part 6, in a party of martials. I had to spend half of my money in spell gems to keep up with the party pace. If I wasn't able to supplement my spellcasting, I would have stopped the campaign half way, out of boredom. Spell starving is no fun at all.

If Paizo wants casters to be interesting to play, there must be long rests. To force long rests, there must be a resource consumption for martials. Currently, the only resource martials have is hp.

I didn't think spellcasters were supposed to cast spells every round in Starfinder, especially since there is no more half BAB. As everyone is reasonably competent with their weapons, just shoot or hack at the enemy and rely on spells only occasionally for utility, bluffs, debuffs, and spike damage.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
krazmuze wrote:
I wonder if it is RAI rather than RAW. It clearly does say you are blocked from Treat Wounds for an hour. But is there somewhere else in the rules that says encounter timers reset? It seems to me the intent is adventures are assuming a 10m break between fights.

I don't recall reading timers reset in the rulebook. If the idea is supported by rules that'd be great as given most my players also play PFS I have to be very careful not to overdo the house rules as people have trouble keeping it straight if I have too many.

I certainly agree treating wounds once per fight feels necessary at moderate or above threats.


Tim Schneider 908 wrote:
krazmuze wrote:
I wonder if it is RAI rather than RAW. It clearly does say you are blocked from Treat Wounds for an hour. But is there somewhere else in the rules that says encounter timers reset? It seems to me the intent is adventures are assuming a 10m break between fights.

I don't recall reading timers reset in the rulebook. If the idea is supported by rules that'd be great as given most my players also play PFS I have to be very careful not to overdo the house rules as people have trouble keeping it straight if I have too many.

I certainly agree treating wounds once per fight feels necessary at moderate or above threats.

Yes, we have to remember that Moderate Threat is a legitimate threat. It's not moderate encounter measured against other encounters, but an actual threat to the party.

PF1 could run at CR for easy play or CR+2 for many tables, but one has to calibrate for PF2's differences. An easy gauntlet in PF1 could destroy you here. Saw some of that in the playtest vs. 4 basic goblins which would've been a pushover in PF1, but killed some PCs according to complaints on the forums.
You are expected to recover often. And there might not be a "how often" answer because of table variation/difficulty preferences as much as narrative context.


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Ravingdork wrote:
I didn't think spellcasters were supposed to cast spells every round in Starfinder, especially since there is no more half BAB. As everyone is reasonably competent with their weapons, just shoot or hack at the enemy and rely on spells only occasionally for utility, bluffs, debuffs, and spike damage.

To be reasonably competent, you need to invest a lot in weapons (feats, attributes and equipment). If you don't make a weapon build, you'll be close to incompetent.

And anyway, Pathfinder 2 doesn't give you this option because of the way proficiencies are working.

Sovereign Court

SuperBidi wrote:
Ascalaphus wrote:
I think most class-based healing is intended for in-combat spike healing. Dipping into it for general healing drastically shortens the fuel for your adventuring day. It reduces a lot of classes from awesome spellcaster to dreary healbot.

In fact, I think it's the opposite. Casters have to heal between combats for the game to keep balance.

If you give your players enough time to heal without using resources you allow your party to fight without end. So, your dungeon can have 100 combats, it's doable. It gives a great incentive in going martial instead of caster, as you don't need casters much (utility spells can easily be acquired through multiclassing) and because martials keep their efficiency fights after fights.
If you force your party to use resources to heal, then your casters are a must have, as they are nearly the only ones able to heal. And you limit the number of combats the party can make, so at some point your casters will be able to get their spells back. It maintains the balance between martials and casters.

That only holds if you assume that casters don't expend any spells during combat. That's not likely for wizards, and it's not likely for clerics either. Clerics have lots of spells on their list apart from Heal, and they're going to cast a few of them during fights too. Also, PF2 has pretty hefty crits and they happen often. So you are quite likely to need some heal spells in some of the combats.

So the remaining pool of spells does tick down in most combats, and the party's safety net gets a little smaller each combat before the long rest.

Now, a party with no casters theoretically has no limit on the number of combats it can do if they get enough respite between them. Nobody's complaining that it's bedtime because they want to regain spells. But I think in practice that's unlikely because:
* They have no safety net in case they need significant in-combat healing. This is a huge disadvantage and likely to result in some deaths at some point. Likewise for having no other spellcasters to cast a fireball or something to deal with a melee-unfriendly monster. A TPK is also a way to force an end to the adventuring day.
* Parties without spellcasters at all are really rare. Spellcasters that never expend spells in combat are really rare. So most likely your spellcaster(s) start running out of spells at some point and asking about bedtime.
* This endless adventuring day is built on an assumption of endless respite, and I don't think anyone proposed that.
* Even if you had lots of encounters and lots of rest between them, eventually you'd get to the end of the day and people start getting fatigued. Fatigued people can no longer Search during exploration and nobody wants that. So bedtime it is.

Sovereign Court

SuperBidi wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
I didn't think spellcasters were supposed to cast spells every round in Starfinder, especially since there is no more half BAB. As everyone is reasonably competent with their weapons, just shoot or hack at the enemy and rely on spells only occasionally for utility, bluffs, debuffs, and spike damage.

To be reasonably competent, you need to invest a lot in weapons (feats, attributes and equipment). If you don't make a weapon build, you'll be close to incompetent.

And anyway, Pathfinder 2 doesn't give you this option because of the way proficiencies are working.

Yeah in Pathfinder 2 you can quite easily not suck at weapons as a caster, and/or use cantrips to keep going all day.

I think the main idea for casters in PF2 is to use one or two spells in a combat when they would have maximum impact, when you can really shape the situation with them. Nuke a group of enemies with a fireball for example. But not all rounds of a combat; on the other rounds you're using cantrips, keeping gas in the tank for later. Also, now that PF2 uses monsters weaknesses a lot, knowledgeable spellcasters can try to match their cantrips to weaknesses for serious profit. Disrupt Undead is pretty good if it triggers a weakness 5 or 10 against positive energy.

So yeah, cantrips fill the gap for a PF2 caster that small arms don't quite manage to in Starfinder.


Ascalaphus wrote:
* They have no safety net in case they need significant in-combat healing.

First, there's Battle Medicine. On such a party I expect to have a real medic with Battle Medicine, Assurance, Ward Medic and Continual Recovery. Then, you can have a few Heal spells thanks to multiclassing. And only Clerics and a bit Druids and Sorcerers can provide this safety net anyway. Bards and Alchemists don't heal enough to handle damage pikes.

Ascalaphus wrote:
* This endless adventuring day is built on an assumption of endless respite, and I don't think anyone proposed that.

Not at all. It's based on the assumption of enough respite to heal without resource consumption (which is very quickly close to 20-30 minutes with the proper medic).

Ascalaphus wrote:
* Even if you had lots of encounters and lots of rest between them, eventually you'd get to the end of the day and people start getting fatigued. Fatigued people can no longer Search during exploration and nobody wants that. So bedtime it is.

After 16 hours of adventuring, so roughly 30 combats. It's close to neverending to me.

Ascalaphus wrote:
* Parties without spellcasters at all are really rare. Spellcasters that never expend spells in combat are really rare. So most likely your spellcaster(s) start running out of spells at some point and asking about bedtime.

That's my point: If you loosely handle respite, you will strongly enforce parties with no spellcasters. Spellcasters are a liability due to their need for bedtime, they must bring something to the table that is so strong that it compensate this liability. And I think Starfinder has this drawback: A party without caster is stronger than a party with casters.

Sovereign Court

SuperBidi wrote:
First, there's Battle Medicine.

You can only benefit from it once per day, so it's really not such a good safety net.

SuperBidi wrote:
That's my point: If you loosely handle respite, you will strongly enforce parties with no spellcasters. Spellcasters are a liability due to their need for bedtime, they must bring something to the table that is so strong that it compensate this liability. And I think Starfinder has this drawback: A party without caster is stronger than a party with casters.

I think this is really rather apocalyptic. People are going to play the class that appeals to them. And if resting between encounters is not a big deal then going to bed after 3-7 encounters to charge up your casters is also not a big deal.

Have you really experienced a "don't you dare bring a spellcaster to Starfinder" culture? I haven't.

SFS scenarios are reasonably short and I don't see casters run out of spells at higher levels. At low levels, auto-hit magic missile is quite powerful compared to pitiful small arms most other classes are saddled with.

In APs, having a caster with some healing and condition removal gives a party considerably more independence when going into The Vast, without a local hospital to fall back on.

I've seen people try various things to manage their spells per day: going Longarms, junksword builds, and lately there's an interest in using spell gems instead of buying weapons that become obsolete after a while anyway.

I really don't think spellcasting is in trouble in Starfinder.


Ascalaphus wrote:
Have you really experienced a "don't you dare bring a spellcaster to Starfinder" culture? I haven't.

Yes.

I play Dead Suns with my Mystic and I'm the sole caster in the party. As a result, I've never been able to push for a long rest. I started to buy truck loads of spell gems after part 2, after a frustrating gaming experience. I play SFS, so I can do that between parts, but in campaign mode, you can't do that as you are far away in the Vast. Without these spell gems, I would have stopped before part 4 and rerolled a martial.

It's not "don't you dare bring a spellcaster", it's "long rest? What for?".


SuperBidi wrote:
Ascalaphus wrote:
Have you really experienced a "don't you dare bring a spellcaster to Starfinder" culture? I haven't.

Yes.

I play Dead Suns with my Mystic and I'm the sole caster in the party. As a result, I've never been able to push for a long rest. I started to buy truck loads of spell gems after part 2, after a frustrating gaming experience. I play SFS, so I can do that between parts, but in campaign mode, you can't do that as you are far away in the Vast. Without these spell gems, I would have stopped before part 4 and rerolled a martial.

It's not "don't you dare bring a spellcaster", it's "long rest? What for?".

For you, maybe. I played the entire Dead Suns AP with two Technomancers and a Mystic in the party and none of what you're describing was a problem.

This is the first I'm even hearing there is a problem, in fact.


GameDesignerDM wrote:

For you, maybe. I played the entire Dead Suns AP with two Technomancers and a Mystic in the party and none of what you're describing was a problem.

This is the first I'm even hearing there is a problem, in fact.

You realize that:

- You can't dismiss my experience by bringing yours.
- Especially when your experience is very different. I was the sole spellcaster, hence my issues. In a party full of spellcasters, the rythm is obviously not the same.


SuperBidi wrote:
GameDesignerDM wrote:

For you, maybe. I played the entire Dead Suns AP with two Technomancers and a Mystic in the party and none of what you're describing was a problem.

This is the first I'm even hearing there is a problem, in fact.

You realize that:

- You can't dismiss my experience by bringing yours.
- Especially when your experience is very different. I was the sole spellcaster, hence my issues. In a party full of spellcasters, the rythm is obviously not the same.

I'm not dismissing your experience - but you also can't say it's an actual problem with the game, when it might just be a problem with a particular group.

I'm playing in a game right now with a single spellcaster, and it's also not an issue.

And, to 2E, I don't think it's an issue here either.

Sovereign Court

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SuperBidi wrote:
Ascalaphus wrote:
Have you really experienced a "don't you dare bring a spellcaster to Starfinder" culture? I haven't.

Yes.

I play Dead Suns with my Mystic and I'm the sole caster in the party. As a result, I've never been able to push for a long rest. I started to buy truck loads of spell gems after part 2, after a frustrating gaming experience. I play SFS, so I can do that between parts, but in campaign mode, you can't do that as you are far away in the Vast. Without these spell gems, I would have stopped before part 4 and rerolled a martial.

It's not "don't you dare bring a spellcaster", it's "long rest? What for?".

But why are your fellow players saying no to a long rest if one of the party members needs it?


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Ascalaphus wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
First, there's Battle Medicine.
You can only benefit from it once per day, so it's really not such a good safety net.

Works particularly well if you're a party of godless heathens though.

The Godless Healing feat says this: You recover an additional 5 Hit Points from a successful attempt to Treat your Wounds or use Battle Medicine on you. After you or an ally use Battle Medicine on you, you become temporarily immune to that Battle Medicine for only 1 hour, instead of 1 day.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Ascalaphus wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
Ascalaphus wrote:
Have you really experienced a "don't you dare bring a spellcaster to Starfinder" culture? I haven't.

Yes.

I play Dead Suns with my Mystic and I'm the sole caster in the party. As a result, I've never been able to push for a long rest. I started to buy truck loads of spell gems after part 2, after a frustrating gaming experience. I play SFS, so I can do that between parts, but in campaign mode, you can't do that as you are far away in the Vast. Without these spell gems, I would have stopped before part 4 and rerolled a martial.

It's not "don't you dare bring a spellcaster", it's "long rest? What for?".

But why are your fellow players saying no to a long rest if one of the party members needs it?

Either the impact of the single spellcaster's spells aren't enough of a benefit compared to the risks of leaving, resting, and ceasing progress on the objective, the other players are jerks, some people might even think that the need for a long rest is the fault of the spellcaster for not rationing their spells 'correctly' and thus not their problem, or or some myriad of possibilities.


Ascalaphus wrote:
But why are your fellow players saying no to a long rest if one of the party members needs it?

Dead Suns is kind of a marathon. 60% of the AP sees you running after another group and trying to catch up with them. The AP makes you feel that every day counts. So you rest while you are in the ship but otherwise you run.

As I am the only caster in the party, it makes resting even worse as I'm the only one getting anything back. So, we load ourselves with potions and go on.
Of course, if I metagame, I'm pretty sure we could rest nearly as much as we want, as I don't think there's a failure condition if we clear an area in too much time. But I hate this kind of metagaming which removes all the tension out of the adventure.

Anyway, my opinion is that it's better to keep tension by enforcing 10-minute rests and let the casters use their spells to top everyone. It avoids players to discuss too much about the duration of rests after each combat, and it pushes people to take casters into account in their party otherwise they can't fully heal between combats or lose a lot of time to do so.
And clearly, it's just a point of view. But this whole discussion is about points of view anyway ;)


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
SuperBidi wrote:
Ascalaphus wrote:
But why are your fellow players saying no to a long rest if one of the party members needs it?

Dead Suns is kind of a marathon. 60% of the AP sees you running after another group and trying to catch up with them. The AP makes you feel that every day counts. So you rest while you are in the ship but otherwise you run.

As I am the only caster in the party, it makes resting even worse as I'm the only one getting anything back. So, we load ourselves with potions and go on.
Of course, if I metagame, I'm pretty sure we could rest nearly as much as we want, as I don't think there's a failure condition if we clear an area in too much time. But I hate this kind of metagaming which removes all the tension out of the adventure.

Anyway, my opinion is that it's better to keep tension by enforcing 10-minute rests and let the casters use their spells to top everyone. It avoids players to discuss too much about the duration of rests after each combat, and it pushes people to take casters into account in their party otherwise they can't fully heal between combats or lose a lot of time to do so.
And clearly, it's just a point of view. But this whole discussion is about points of view anyway ;)

Might be a difference in GMing, but I played through Dead Suns with a mystic as the only caster in the party (the others were an operative, envoy, and solarion), and this wasn't my experience with it. We took 10-minute rests and breaks for the night as needed. Yes, things are fairly urgent, but imo, the party shouldn't be penalized for taking reasonable time to rest ("reasonable" meaning they're still focused on the objective and aren't swanning off to do something else for weeks on end) and a GM who would do that is being too harsh.

I'm saying this not to dismiss your experience--it sucks to feel like you aren't contributing--but to say that it might be worth talking to the GM and other players OOC about this? If you tell them your preferences for this, hopefully they'll be reasonable.

If the game's already over, of course, it's a moot point, but it might be worth having a discussion with the group if you want to play a caster with them again.


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SuperBidi wrote:
To be reasonably competent, you need to invest a lot in weapons (feats, attributes and equipment).

Er, not really. Longarm proficiency alone gets you competency for a large chunk of the game. You want specialization at some point, but you can delay that for a bit.

Certainly an obnoxious bit of a tax and Paizo really dropped the ball with small arms mechanics, but not all that much of a hurdle in the end.


I'll second Squiggit that almost every character can be competent with weapons by investing two feats (longarm proficiency and versatile specialization).

Now, I know some people who think casters should have the staying power to cast all day and don't think they should have to resort to weapons. This is the place to debate that, but we can call it a difference of play style.

But characters can be perfectly functional with a moderate dex investment and two feats.

Edit: To expand on why smallarms suck and why they have to suck, is because they tied the Operative to them. They had to have substantially less damage dice and not get full level to damage or else the operative would deal too much damage compared to the soldier or solarion.

They could have made the weapons closer in terms of damage and gave the Operative less of a bonus, but that's not ultimately what happened.


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Isn't this thread supposed to be about PF2?

Anyway, my gut reaction, is that moderate and severe encounters should be designed so that either:

A) there is a minimum of 10min afterwards to heal up, or

B) follow up encounters are less lethal to account for injured PCs, and three to four encounters without a 10min respite should be used very sparingly.

Castles and military bases, the sort where many groups of enemies can respond one after another, should be staffed with mostly level-2 enemies, or even less.

Basically, just take care to avoid the PF1 mentality of needing equal numbers of CR + 1 or 2 enemies to threaten PCs.

A level X creature in this edition should be exactly as threatening as a level X PC. Hitting a party with several on level enemies without rest is inviting a TPK.


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Garretmander wrote:

Isn't this thread supposed to be about PF2?

Anyway, my gut reaction, is that moderate and severe encounters should be designed so that either:

A) there is a minimum of 10min afterwards to heal up, or

B) follow up encounters are less lethal to account for injured PCs, and three to four encounters without a 10min respite should be used very sparingly.

Castles and military bases, the sort where many groups of enemies can respond one after another, should be staffed with mostly level-2 enemies, or even less.

Basically, just take care to avoid the PF1 mentality of needing equal numbers of CR + 1 or 2 enemies to threaten PCs.

A level X creature in this edition should be exactly as threatening as a level X PC. Hitting a party with several on level enemies without rest is inviting a TPK.

I agree. I actually think that castles and situations where the party might run into patrols frequently, especially when the dungeon/environment is on high alert should probably be level -4 on average, and maybe not even necessary resolve always as combat encounters but as disruptive skill challenges that can lead to elite units being called in if the party is triangulated on. this would keep up the tension of trying to make space for a short rest, but not get tedious with irrelevant combats.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns Subscriber

The mean creature encounter in Fall of Plaguestone is nearly moderate. Several of those encounter without a rest would be deadly, continuing on to just a second would be more than severe.

Seems they are designing adventures for one maybe two encounters before needing the break. Dealing with a chain of more than a dozen lowest level lackys would not be much more than a boring way to die (and indeed would be done better as a skill challenge not an encounter)

It is why I think the treat wounds cooldown is only for that exploration and should reset with encounters. Allow healing after every encounter, the GM can run more entertaining encounters.

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