Article with Analysis on Casters vs Martials:


Advice

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


Triceratops
"A huge dinosaur crashes through the underbrush as it charges at you, two great horns atop its stout, beaked head."

look at this dummy

Makes sense to me. That third horn isn't so great.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Narxiso wrote:


Honestly, I didn’t even realize that there was no way to mitigate damage on allies within an aoe. I definitely though there was a feat available specifically for that (it may have been in the playtest and I just overlooked it not being present).

At least for early levels, I didn’t really see that much of an accuracy discrepancy between myself and the martials (granted we didn’t have a fighter) even after they got magic weapons, and this was with me using telekinetic projectile the way it is entered into fantasy grounds, being a ranged attack that uses dexterity instead of spellcasting modifier. My main role in the group was buffing with secondary being damage and healing, so I didn’t personally do debuffing, but another character did, and it worked out very well for our group. Even with my damage, I always felt like I was greatly contributing to the group with damage, defeating one of the stronger enemies in an AP while most of my group was just healed (conscious and ready to stand up to make and attack) up from dying. I would really like to know what you’ve been doing as a wizard and how you’ve been playing it, as I have not played wizard, just read through it a bit. I do disagree that blaster is the optimal (except to deal damage) way to play wizard, but I also think that prebuffing is terrible and another reason why I hate...

If it's still present I haven't been able to find it, and I looked several times. If it is still present I'll be exceptionally pleased and probably retract most of my issues as I won't have to worry about initiative, AoE placement, and getting my party to cooperate nearly as much as I currently do.

In the play test I tried an Illusionist/Enchanter as I prefer to play CC/Buff roles and it fell exceptionally flat. There was a single fight with notable performance and it require expenditure of every single spell slot I had...for a single one monster encounter.

While I understand that many people despised prebuffing in first edition, the fact that I can trade a single spell slot for a 1-2 battle buff to another party member while I stand in the back and toss cantrips it doesn't *feel* very fun which surprised me as normally I don't have an issue with that style of play - I suspect the shorter duration makes the investment less appealing but I'm not certain.

I have noticed an accuracy issue, and we only just hit level 3 last night, mostly I think it's because our martials are generally good at getting flanking and the cleric likes to hit them with bless. I usually don't benefit from these things. I will admit that one of the things I usually enjoy playing about a Wizard is that I'm not the one rolling the dice most of the time and this edition shifts that in favor of the player rolling dice. Not my cup of tea and it's requiring an adjustment. I did have a shiny moment last night, but again that's because the party had a single martial character with a blunt weapon and they ate a crit in the first round of the fight and were afraid to engage after that. The other characters were stuck trying to stab skeletons with predictable results. It also required I use 3/4 of my spell slots on a single encounter which we then decided to rest and it just felt like my success then lead to an in game delay because the cannon was out of ammo.

If this wizard dies we'll probably try another type of wizard and see if things changed significantly from playtest; I just didn't have it in me to try another round of that right off the bat.


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Even in static 1st edition I never had a problem hitting enemies with AoEs.

Most of the time, my allies were on one side and the enemies on the other, making getting most of the enemies a pretty simple affair. Even when things were messy, such as when allies were flanking, I could still generally hit all enemies save one or two.

I can't help but think it would be even easier in this edition. PCs can dart in, Strike, then dart out again, leaving the enemies free and clear for fireballing on the caster's turn.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Ravingdork wrote:

Even in static 1st edition I never had a problem hitting enemies with AoEs.

Most of the time, my allies were on one side and the enemies on the other, making getting most of the enemies a pretty simple affair. Even when things were messy, such as when allies were flanking, I could still generally hit all enemies save one or two.

I can't help but think it would be even easier in this edition. PCs can dart in, Strike, then dart out again, leaving the enemies free and clear for fireballing on the caster's turn.

So far the action economy (and lack of AoO's in my party- not fighter and our champion is of freedom) has resulted in the party actually ending up completely intermixed with the enemy.

Part of that is just the learning curve for my table but part of it is also how the enemies are reacting. There's no line or other solid formation developing. Our barbarian tends to use Sudden Charge to blitz around the field while the Champion and Rogue try to work together to down enemies via flanking. The cleric is either exceptionally far back plying her longbow or somewhere in the middle trying to get range to heal/buff the barbarian. This leaves me looking at what amounts to two intermixed knots of combat. One centered around the barbarian, the other around the champion & rogue with the cleric and any ranged enemies linking the two groupings together into a confused mass. If I could ignore the cleric I'd be really keen to start dropping AoE's into that space buuuuut...

So far I've been able to get more than one creature into my AoE precisely once and that took rolling first on initiative and then frantic in character demands that nobody step into two specific spots so that the cone wouldn't catch them. We still ended up having to use the paladin's reaction to let a player Step out of one of the squares IIRC.


Is the GM intentionally making AoEs difficult, or is it just the nature of both sides trying to flank that results in so much mixing? It sounds pretty extreme that you've had so much difficulty setting them up. I suppose it depends on the spells as well, cones and emanations are harder to position than bursts, for example.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
BellyBeard wrote:
Is the GM intentionally making AoEs difficult, or is it just the nature of both sides trying to flank that results in so much mixing? It sounds pretty extreme that you've had so much difficulty setting them up. I suppose it depends on the spells as well, cones and emanations are harder to position than bursts, for example.

The GM isn't intentionally making it difficult. He's actually been trying to help me. The Barbarian is in love with sudden charge, using it fairly regularly to dash around the field and hit things. The monsters respond accordingly try to catch and pin in the crazy halfling. The Champion and Rogue are busy trying to isolate and lock down whatever their fighting.

My spells, currently, are mostly cones and lines. I'm looking forward to adding a burst, I would have some difficulty there too but at least I could reliably catch the edges of combats for multiple hits.


Quote:
The monsters respond accordingly try to catch and pin in the crazy halfling

Ah...braindead Monsters without tactic, i see. Lucky party.


K1 wrote:
Quote:
The monsters respond accordingly try to catch and pin in the crazy halfling
Ah...braindead Monsters without tactic, i see. Lucky party.

?

“That crazy halfling is leveraging their mobility to smack us with a big sword, let’s grab the sucker and keep them still” seems pretty tactical to me.


Henro wrote:
K1 wrote:
Quote:
The monsters respond accordingly try to catch and pin in the crazy halfling
Ah...braindead Monsters without tactic, i see. Lucky party.

?

“That crazy halfling is leveraging their mobility to smack us with a big sword, let’s grab the sucker and keep them still” seems pretty tactical to me.

Theor halfling is running far and forth.

Let us focuson the others instead of chasing who goes 7x in a straight line.

When a party encounters monsters, they are supposed to have some sort of tactic, unless as said, braindead.

Or Benny Hill Music is playing,ofc.

Maybe their tactic won't be the best, but one thing for sure is not to chase a barbarian who is running the whole battle field.


Well, their tactics seem to be working great at preventing Wizard getting in his spell to hit them all.


NemoNoName wrote:
Well, their tactics seem to be working great at preventing Wizard getting in his spell to hit them all.

Ahahahah touche.

In before the barbarian suddenly stop moving, dragon's breath, all enemies dead.

God, the whole thing would be hylarious...

Dark Archive

Mabtik wrote:
Several posts

Unfortunately, that feat isn’t available in the rule book from what I’ve seen, which sucks since that would have been key to an evocations build.

I do think that if you’re using attack spells and aren’t getting the same buffs as the rest of the party, then it’s perfectly fair to feel the difference in accuracy. In my game, when I buffed, everyone was within range, except for one fight when the rogue dashed off far ahead of the party.

You honestly seem to be in an unfortunate situation with a party not wholly suited to your character’s fighting style. I don’t think that’s anyone’s fault, just circumstance. I hadn’t experienced anything like that, and my group’s sorcerer hasn’t really attempted anything big in combat in the one session that we played with our new characters.

As for buffing characters, I think the idea was to get away from prebuffing and focus on buffing for individual fights, especially tough ones. As for debuffing, I think the best for a first level spell would be Goblin Pox, as it gives sickened on a success (requires an action to reroll the save to remove the condition). Fear is also a good debuff, but at lower levels, I would try to use the intimidate first, as spell slots are precious then.

Would you mind posting your build and spells to get an idea about what your character is like? I’m not sure if I can help your situation, but I’d like to see what you’ve done.


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One option to mitigate friendly fire AoE spells is to use Spell Immunity (4th level spell). If you limit yourself to only 1 type of offensive spell you're willing to cast when your allies are in the area, and if you choose it 1 level below the level you cast Spell Immunity at, it has a 95% chance to block the effects of the spell for just the Spell Immune target.

So its not perfect. Sometimes you'll roll a 1 on the counteract check. Unless you're GM's willing to let you choose to fail against the counteracting Spell Immunity.

On the plus side, Spell Immunity lasts 24 hours, so you can cast it the previous day. On a spell substition wizard, you could swap out all your highest level spell slots at the end of the day, and cast them all on your allies, and then from the next morning for about 16 hours you're covered.

Even 1 casting of Spell immunity in the highest level slot available can be useful, as eliminating 1 melee ally often frees up a possible location to drop an AoE.

It also lets you do silly things with Glyph of Warding. Store an offensive AoE in a glyph on a small container (pocket with button, empty potion bottle, pixie sized chest, or the like). Place the trapped item on ally with spell immunity (perhaps in a bandoleer or something). When they take a 1 action interact to open or touch it or whatever, it goes off. They likely negate the effect for themselves, but produce an AoE centered on them. And Glyphs stick around indefinitely so you can prep them days in advance (up to a total of casting stat modifier prepared at one time).

A 7th level substitution wizard with 18 or 19 Int could prepare four 4th level Glyphs containing 3rd level fireballs. Assuming no combat the previous day, they could cast 3 Spell immunity (Fireball) lasting 24 hours.

Combined with 3 or 4 fireball 3rd level spell slots the day of, and you get you a fair bit of 6d6 fireballs action.


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Deadmanwalking wrote:

You're totally right. This is an awesome strategy. An awesome strategy entirely predicated on having a caster to buff the Fighter. At least, if you want to do it regularly.

Nobody is saying Fighters aren't good. Just that there are things casters do better...like buffing, for example.

It takes a few feat for anyone to be a good buffer.

And the most efficient buff is called "flanking" and is delivered by martial characters.


Hiruma Kai wrote:

It also lets you do silly things with Glyph of Warding. Store an offensive AoE in a glyph on a small container (pocket with button, empty potion bottle, pixie sized chest, or the like). Place the trapped item on ally with spell immunity (perhaps in a bandoleer or something). When they take a 1 action interact to open or touch it or whatever, it goes off. They likely negate the effect for themselves, but produce an AoE centered on them. And Glyphs stick around indefinitely so you can prep them days in advance (up to a total of casting stat modifier prepared at one time).

A 7th level substitution wizard with 18 or 19 Int could prepare four 4th level Glyphs containing 3rd level fireballs. Assuming no combat the previous day, they could cast 3 Spell immunity (Fireball) lasting 24 hours.

Combined with 3 or 4 fireball 3rd level spell slots the day of, and you get you a fair bit of 6d6 fireballs action.

Glyph of Warding is triggered if you move the container so, I don't think it works.


SuperBidi wrote:
Glyph of Warding is triggered if you move the container so, I don't think it works.

I was assuming you would use a password to initially bypass the ward and allowing you to touch and move it, and set a verbal trigger of some form while touching it to trigger it, but I guess that should be read to only work with the area version of the spell and not the container version?

"You can set a password, a trigger, or both for the glyph. Any creature that moves, opens, or touches the target container or enters the target area that doesn't speak the password or that matches the trigger activates the glyph, releasing the harmful spell within."

So the password and trigger options don't do anything for the container version of the spell. I guess that means you need to dismiss it each time you want to access your stuff in the container (presumably the more traditional use of the spell).

Thanks for the clarification.


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Deadmanwalking wrote:
mcintma wrote:
Playing a Wizard I've found you'd better hope your DM rolls bad on saves and does not fudge crit fails (IME alot of DMs do this)

Then you're playing with s#!+ty GMs. Fudging to take away crits from the PCs is pretty much the definition of a bad GM, and not something wrong with the system.

Fudging can be fine if the whole group is on board with it, but doing so to take away PC successes? Absolutely not okay at all.

I did have to respond to this - because he one playtester that documented and went out of their way to not fudge *ever* (Collette) got ROASTED because her table plays *brutal hardcore*.

The *OVERWHELMING* consensus of the vast majority of the game (including the Devs who while validating she had a right to play that way - admitted they don't balance for that kind of play) assume that the GM is fudging in some way to keep the game balance in check.

That absolutely will go both ways in any normal game - you can't 'take it easy' on the players without *accepting* that you alter the dice rolls on occasion.


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I thought the general gist of that particular can of worms wasn't so much never altering the dice but rather "every enemy ever from the slimes to the pit fiends are played with the precise purpose to kill the pcs" to which yeah, the system generally isn't meant for everything to be supreme tactical hiveminds that go straight for throat cuts the second a pc gets downed.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Ckorik wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:
mcintma wrote:
Playing a Wizard I've found you'd better hope your DM rolls bad on saves and does not fudge crit fails (IME alot of DMs do this)

Then you're playing with s#!+ty GMs. Fudging to take away crits from the PCs is pretty much the definition of a bad GM, and not something wrong with the system.

Fudging can be fine if the whole group is on board with it, but doing so to take away PC successes? Absolutely not okay at all.

I did have to respond to this - because he one playtester that documented and went out of their way to not fudge *ever* (Collette) got ROASTED because her table plays *brutal hardcore*.

The *OVERWHELMING* consensus of the vast majority of the game (including the Devs who while validating she had a right to play that way - admitted they don't balance for that kind of play) assume that the GM is fudging in some way to keep the game balance in check.

That absolutely will go both ways in any normal game - you can't 'take it easy' on the players without *accepting* that you alter the dice rolls on occasion.

Loads of people play like that and didnt get roasted. I play like that. Collette was roasted for declaring the game as brutal hardcore and then asked what tactics her group used answered wth functionally "none but no tactics could possibly have helped."


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Tarik Blackhands wrote:
I thought the general gist of that particular can of worms wasn't so much never altering the dice but rather "every enemy ever from the slimes to the pit fiends are played with the precise purpose to kill the pcs" to which yeah, the system generally isn't meant for everything to be supreme tactical hiveminds that go straight for throat cuts the second a pc gets downed.

And that's a form of fudging - it's just that is what everyone expects from the game. In the real world a pack of dogs doesn't stop attacking the downed 'target' because they stop moving - and intelligent animals (Humans) will obviously co-ordinate to best effect.

I even agree that it's a *brutal hardcore* mode of play - but it does expose the truth behind play - that the GM is expected to play a *game* and not a brutal deathmarch - and in *many* cases that also means they are making sub-optimal choices for the NPC enemies to not overwhelm the players.

That's fudging - it's just want everyone accepts as part of the game - if you accept that the GM is going to make calls for the game to keep the 'fun/excitement/fairness' and that it's still a game and not a simulation - then you can't (in good faith) get righteous because they change the outcome of something.

The game even encourages this - with secret rolls. If 'fudging' was such a sin against the game - all rolls would be encouraged to be open and in front of the players (many groups *DO THIS* because they are so against fudging). You can't however - have secret rolls and encouraged adjudication without accepting that the GM can modify the results and you wouldn't know.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Ckorik wrote:
Tarik Blackhands wrote:
I thought the general gist of that particular can of worms wasn't so much never altering the dice but rather "every enemy ever from the slimes to the pit fiends are played with the precise purpose to kill the pcs" to which yeah, the system generally isn't meant for everything to be supreme tactical hiveminds that go straight for throat cuts the second a pc gets downed.
The game even encourages this - with secret rolls. If 'fudging' was such a sin against the game - all rolls would be encouraged to be open and in front of the players (many groups *DO THIS* because they are so against fudging). You can't however - have secret rolls and encouraged adjudication without accepting that the GM can modify the results and you wouldn't know.

Secret rolls aren't for fudging. They are for stopping players knowing whether they rolled high/low (or even at all) and applying that meta knowledge to the perceived results. Yes it makes fudging easier, but thats a byproduct not the reason.

E.G If the player sees they rolled a 1 on their Gather Information dice, they are going to have a harder time role-playing out their character believing the false info the gm describes than if they got that info without seeing the roll.


Ckorik wrote:
Tarik Blackhands wrote:
I thought the general gist of that particular can of worms wasn't so much never altering the dice but rather "every enemy ever from the slimes to the pit fiends are played with the precise purpose to kill the pcs" to which yeah, the system generally isn't meant for everything to be supreme tactical hiveminds that go straight for throat cuts the second a pc gets downed.

And that's a form of fudging - it's just that is what everyone expects from the game. In the real world a pack of dogs doesn't stop attacking the downed 'target' because they stop moving - and intelligent animals (Humans) will obviously co-ordinate to best effect.

I even agree that it's a *brutal hardcore* mode of play - but it does expose the truth behind play - that the GM is expected to play a *game* and not a brutal deathmarch - and in *many* cases that also means they are making sub-optimal choices for the NPC enemies to not overwhelm the players.

That's fudging - it's just want everyone accepts as part of the game - if you accept that the GM is going to make calls for the game to keep the 'fun/excitement/fairness' and that it's still a game and not a simulation - then you can't (in good faith) get righteous because they change the outcome of something.

The game even encourages this - with secret rolls. If 'fudging' was such a sin against the game - all rolls would be encouraged to be open and in front of the players (many groups *DO THIS* because they are so against fudging). You can't however - have secret rolls and encouraged adjudication without accepting that the GM can modify the results and you wouldn't know.

I'm aware, but trawl around the forums and you'll see a lot of people get all righteous indignation about altering the sacred d20 but don't care a fig if you suddenly throw an idiot ball straight at the monster because "fudge" just means dice alteration to them.

Really treating the whole thing of "GMs are encouraged to make things fun and exciting rather than brutal and realistic by the rules!" as some grand revelation is just odd to me. Like...yeah, we know. In every system ever it's a joke for the GM to ""beat"" his players by dint of having access to infinite resources but virtually all of them (that want to have a table anyway) don't go out of their way to do this because this the G in RPG stands for "game" and everyone's here for a good time, not getting power word killed by the bbeg at L5 because he scry/fried the group after they thwarted part of his scheme or other such ""realistic"" responses.


Hiruma Kai wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
Glyph of Warding is triggered if you move the container so, I don't think it works.

I was assuming you would use a password to initially bypass the ward and allowing you to touch and move it, and set a verbal trigger of some form while touching it to trigger it, but I guess that should be read to only work with the area version of the spell and not the container version?

"You can set a password, a trigger, or both for the glyph. Any creature that moves, opens, or touches the target container or enters the target area that doesn't speak the password or that matches the trigger activates the glyph, releasing the harmful spell within."

So the password and trigger options don't do anything for the container version of the spell. I guess that means you need to dismiss it each time you want to access your stuff in the container (presumably the more traditional use of the spell).

Thanks for the clarification.

I hadn't understood how you want to do it. The issue, then, is that you won't trigger it by opening it, as you spoke the password or match the trigger...


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Tarik Blackhands wrote:
I thought the general gist of that particular can of worms wasn't so much never altering the dice but rather "every enemy ever from the slimes to the pit fiends are played with the precise purpose to kill the pcs" to which yeah, the system generally isn't meant for everything to be supreme tactical hiveminds that go straight for throat cuts the second a pc gets downed.

Going for throat cuts the second a PC gets downed is an underperforming tactic. Monsters are there to kill the PCs and survive, the best strategy for that is to put all the PCs down then cut throats. Losing time to attack downed enemies when you have a standing Barbarian next to you is pretty stupid.

I always consider that the monsters will kill me the moment this is a valid choice. I expect the DM to cut throats of paralyzed PCs (if the paralysis is a low duration one), to put fireballs so they hit the maximum number of PCs (downed PCs included) and when a creature just wants to eat, it's supposed to eat the first downed PC it finds.

Anything else than that is hurting verisimilitude. I really hate when you're supposed to die and the DM suddenly downplays monsters. What is the point of a fight if there is no risk? What is the point of a dice roll if there is no failure?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Narxiso wrote:


Would you mind posting your build and spells to get an idea about what your character is like? I’m not sure if I can help your situation, but I’d like to see what you’ve done.

Sure, I'm certain it's not a perfect build but I don't mind posting it.

Preface: General idea is to go for an all mental stats build. Linden is a snooty over-privileged youngest son who's out to take control of the castle on Hellknight Hill and make it his own just to prove that he's not the wastrel his family thinks he is. Some of these choices are not super crunchy, and I'm okay with that.

Linden Rathmoor
Human; Hell Knight Historian
Wizard 3; Spell Blending Evoker

Str: 10
Dex: 14
Con: 10
Int: 18
Wis: 12
Cha: 14

Arcane Attack: +9, Arcane DC: 19
Fort: +5, Reflex: +6, Will: +8

Expert: Arcana
Trained: Crafting, Diplomacy, Intimidation, Nature, Occultism, Religion, Society
Lore: Architecture, Nethys, Warfare

Feats: Natural Ambition (Widen Spell), Reach Spell, Arcane Sense, Incredible Initiative, Courtly Graces, Magical Shorthand

Spells:
Acid Splash, Dancing Lights, Detect Magic, Electric Arc, Light, Prestidigitation, Ray of Frost, Shield, Produce Flame

Burning Hands, Hydraulic Push, Mage Armor, Magic Missile, Ant Haul, Grim Tendrils, Item Facade

Acid Arrow, Mirror Image

Focus Power:
Arcane Bolt

This is where I'm sitting currently. I was strongly considering taking a rogue dedication feat at two, but then the errata regarding class feats came out for wizards so I had to wait because I wanted to have both Widen and Reach metamagics. I'm looking forward to rounding out the spell book now that I have Magical Shorthand with more support spells. Partially due to my experience as a player and partly because Linden is getting frustrated that he can't just wave his hand and vaporize the enemies without also doing so to his minions, I mean friends.

Feel free to pull the character apart, I'm open to critique.
My party is: Liberation Champion going Torchsomething dedication, Dragon Barbarian, Cleric of Erastil (currently cloistered, may switch to war), and a Rogue with two daggers who I have no actual idea what he's doing - he likes to make very broad characters so it's hard to actually state what he's building towards other than everything.


SuperBidi wrote:
I hadn't understood how you want to do it. The issue, then, is that you won't trigger it by opening it, as you spoke the password or match the trigger...

I guess I was reading it as a logical or between "unless you spoke the password or match the trigger". So if the trigger is whistling humanoid, even if you spoke the password, the evaluations comes out true and thus triggers.

If you can just set a trigger, and it doesn't go off generally (which I guess makes the most sense for a trigger only option), it becomes simpler and you just the trigger condition to "whistling creature" or "creature that is saying 'Abracadabra'".


Hiruma Kai wrote:

I guess I was reading it as a logical or between "unless you spoke the password or match the trigger". So if the trigger is whistling humanoid, even if you spoke the password, the evaluations comes out true and thus triggers.

If you can just set a trigger, and it doesn't go off generally (which I guess makes the most sense for a trigger only option), it becomes simpler and you just the trigger condition to "whistling creature" or "creature that is saying 'Abracadabra'".

Ok, I see. By trigger, I was thinking something like: Touched by an evil-aligned creature, an orc or my mum.

Or, for a bank vault: If it's outside opening hours.
Anyway, I don't think a DM will allow you to cast a Cone of Cold for the price of saying "Abracadabra". That would look too much of a rule abuse.

Dark Archive

Mabtik wrote:
Narxiso wrote:
I asked for something
You delivered

There is absolutely nothing wrong with your build whatsoever. It looks like what I’d expect from an evocation wizard in PF2, and the effectiveness of your spells would be greatly reduced with a party build of that sort (3 martials and a cleric who buffs), I’d reckon. I don’t really have anything that I think would make this a better evocation build (directly); all I have are a few suggestions.

From your character descriptions, I think it would be appropriate to choose a few more “arrogant” (my adjective of description) spells, partly because I think of wizards as ultimate, thinker type spell casters who excel at their specializations because they enable themselves and partly for flavor of what you’ve posted.

For starters, I would branch out into enchantment for spells like command (making the peasants and naysayers grovel) and fear (to show everyone who’s boss). I’d save command for bosses and use fear judiciously after exhausting the demoralize feat.

I’d also branch out more to necromancy spells, specifically goblin pox (no one would criticize a noble for a few serf deaths right?). Sickened is an amazing debuff, especially when paired with fear to make landing other spells and attacks more easily, and it requires an action to possibly remove. These should help with landing more evocation single target spells (though very slot spending at low levels). These are really the only spells that I think could be thematic additions from your description.

As for your class feats, I would really suggest that you take the bard multiclass (not for the buffing cantrips, for you’re a proud noble of destruction, not back seat character in a supporting role), but to take bardic knowledge. This way, you could use an actions every fight to glean useful information about enemies (especially since you’ll have the intelligence).

This is really a spoiler:
Also, while playing through Age of Ashes, at least the first book, we got loads of spell scrolls, and most were on the arcane spell list. And I mean I think I could have spent one or two every fight and would still have some left over. That should really help keep up with martial damage low levels and not fell like you’re running dry of spells.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Narxiso wrote:
Mabtik wrote:
Narxiso wrote:
I asked for something
You delivered

There is absolutely nothing wrong with your build whatsoever. It looks like what I’d expect from an evocation wizard in PF2, and the effectiveness of your spells would be greatly reduced with a party build of that sort (3 martials and a cleric who buffs), I’d reckon. I don’t really have anything that I think would make this a better evocation build (directly); all I have are a few suggestions.

From your character descriptions, I think it would be appropriate to choose a few more “arrogant” (my adjective of description) spells, partly because I think of wizards as ultimate, thinker type spell casters who excel at their specializations because they enable themselves and partly for flavor of what you’ve posted.

For starters, I would branch out into enchantment for spells like command (making the peasants and naysayers grovel) and fear (to show everyone who’s boss). I’d save command for bosses and use fear judiciously after exhausting the demoralize feat.

I’d also branch out more to necromancy spells, specifically goblin pox (no one would criticize a noble for a few serf deaths right?). Sickened is an amazing debuff, especially when paired with fear to make landing other spells and attacks more easily, and it requires an action to possibly remove. These should help with landing more evocation single target spells (though very slot spending at low levels). These are really the only spells that I think could be thematic additions from your description.

As for your class feats, I would really suggest that you take the bard multiclass (not for the buffing cantrips, for you’re a proud noble of destruction, not back seat character in a supporting role), but to take bardic knowledge. This way, you could use an actions every fight to glean useful information about enemies (especially since you’ll have the intelligence).

** spoiler omitted **...

Thank you for the affirmation that I was building correctly. Given my trouble I was starting to think that I had made a major gaffe somewhere and just couldn't see it through my assumptions. My GM and I had jokingly mentioned trying to get the class dedication feat for all the casting classes, but it was mostly a thought experiment. I'll take a look at the Bard one more seriously. I've been fairly underwhelmed with most the Wizard class feat options for a pure blasting build, and I'm more excited to start moving my social skills up. I think I'm going to try and get to the feat that lets me use Arcana for everything and then retrain my skills late in the game.

As for Recall checks I've actually been using Recall Knowledge into a cantrip or spell in almost every combat. My table isn't a huge fan that it's a full action to do a knowledge check and I get a slight buff to the action as it's considered that I'm using the time to communicate what I know to the peasants.

I do have a few spells on there just for ego- Prestidigitation and Item Facade (which is permanent when heightened! My rooms are going to look perfect forever!) while I plan to start adding some other things into my books as I have time with Magical Shorthand. We've found a cache of scrolls but only one was Arcane; I guess we need to keep going for more scrolls.

I'm hoping to talk my party into using some more tactical movement where they'll stop charging into and through the enemy. Personally it frustrates my ability to contribute with my current build, and in character Linden is really nervous that someone will see him standing in his resplendent robes in the back and decide to stab the nobleman while he's undefended.


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Ckorik wrote:
Tarik Blackhands wrote:
I thought the general gist of that particular can of worms wasn't so much never altering the dice but rather "every enemy ever from the slimes to the pit fiends are played with the precise purpose to kill the pcs" to which yeah, the system generally isn't meant for everything to be supreme tactical hiveminds that go straight for throat cuts the second a pc gets downed.

And that's a form of fudging - it's just that is what everyone expects from the game. In the real world a pack of dogs doesn't stop attacking the downed 'target' because they stop moving - and intelligent animals (Humans) will obviously co-ordinate to best effect.

I even agree that it's a *brutal hardcore* mode of play - but it does expose the truth behind play - that the GM is expected to play a *game* and not a brutal deathmarch - and in *many* cases that also means they are making sub-optimal choices for the NPC enemies to not overwhelm the players.

That's fudging - it's just want everyone accepts as part of the game - if you accept that the GM is going to make calls for the game to keep the 'fun/excitement/fairness' and that it's still a game and not a simulation - then you can't (in good faith) get righteous because they change the outcome of something.

The game even encourages this - with secret rolls. If 'fudging' was such a sin against the game - all rolls would be encouraged to be open and in front of the players (many groups *DO THIS* because they are so against fudging). You can't however - have secret rolls and encouraged adjudication without accepting that the GM can modify the results and you wouldn't know.

In the real world a pack of dogs doesn't stop attacking the downed 'target' because they stop moving...if that target was alone and no one is threatening the pack. Would the pack continue attacking said prey if a bear starts charging towards them? Or what if the target is backed up by allies who go in rescue the downed target?

The only time I would see a intelligent animals/people go out of the way to finish off or cut the throats of a downed creature in the middle of combat is if said creature continuously came back to cause them trouble, or if no one is threatening the guy who downed the creature (but even the latter seems unlikely if the attacker's friends are in trouble). It may not be "optimal" in the face of party equipped with a healer and the players, but it's more realistic when you consider combat to be a chaotic brawl happening with each round being 6 seconds long with everything happening all at once.

And the secret rolls wasn't there to encourage fudging die rolls. It is there to prevent metagame knowledge from affecting player decisions because they saw that they rolled low, and it prevents scenarios where everyone joins in to roll a check because one person rolled poorly on a skill check, even if it was intended to be a one person skill check.


SuperBidi wrote:

Ok, I see. By trigger, I was thinking something like: Touched by an evil-aligned creature, an orc or my mum.

Or, for a bank vault: If it's outside opening hours.
Anyway, I don't think a DM will allow you to cast a Cone of Cold for the price of saying "Abracadabra". That would look too much of a rule abuse.

Fair enough. They don't give any examples for triggers, so I assumed you describe the criteria as something that the caster could identify with their senses. Wearing full plate and wielding an axe. Green skinned. Speaking Orcish.

Didn't realize it could detect alignment as well as race. That becomes handy for identifying evil spies using disguises and illusions and the like. Just slot in a non-damaging but "hostile" spell like glitterdust and have your guests walk through the glyphed entrance way with an appropriate trigger. Evil non-humans. Your evil shapeshifted spy is now covered in glitter.

On the bright side, parties tend to consist of multiple people, so if two allies (or a wizard and a familiar) with spell immunity are adjacent, they could spend an action triggering it on the other ally. Of course, odds of an ally taking damage in that case jump to about 1 in 10 instead of 1 in 20. Shrug. Its a fair bit of setup, and certainly not usable every day, but its an interesting option. Plus always fun to hand to the party rogue 4 of them and tell them to sneak it into the enemy's pack at night.

As for the more general problem of allies getting mixed up in battle lines, straight in at enemies is sometimes not the best choice. Occasionally waiting/delaying/readying an action for when they're in range can produce a better tempo.

If you're starting about 60 feet away against melee enemies, the barbarian has sudden charge, but the other 2 martials don't, and he runs off 60 feet, and attacks twice, then your typical champion is going to be move, move, move or at best move, move, attack. In return the enemies can flank the barbarian to get move, attack, attack (or for the one he attacked, 3 attack actions).

If on the other hand, everyone on your side backed up 25 feet against speed 25-40 enemies and readied an action to trip when they move within range, you'll likely take much less damage, and be in a strong position to counter on your action again with 3 attacks, potentially against a tripped foe.

Obviously depends a lot on enemies and terrain. It is also not optimal against ranged strikers. Also depends on character personality.

How much in combat healing is the cleric having to do at the moment? Is the barbarian basically throwing caution to the wind and the cleric having to run up after to keep them up or is the barbarian's hit points sufficient to keep them standing throughout the fight?


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Tarik Blackhands wrote:
Ckorik wrote:
Tarik Blackhands wrote:
I thought the general gist of that particular can of worms wasn't so much never altering the dice but rather "every enemy ever from the slimes to the pit fiends are played with the precise purpose to kill the pcs" to which yeah, the system generally isn't meant for everything to be supreme tactical hiveminds that go straight for throat cuts the second a pc gets downed.

And that's a form of fudging - it's just that is what everyone expects from the game. In the real world a pack of dogs doesn't stop attacking the downed 'target' because they stop moving - and intelligent animals (Humans) will obviously co-ordinate to best effect.

I even agree that it's a *brutal hardcore* mode of play - but it does expose the truth behind play - that the GM is expected to play a *game* and not a brutal deathmarch - and in *many* cases that also means they are making sub-optimal choices for the NPC enemies to not overwhelm the players.

That's fudging - it's just want everyone accepts as part of the game - if you accept that the GM is going to make calls for the game to keep the 'fun/excitement/fairness' and that it's still a game and not a simulation - then you can't (in good faith) get righteous because they change the outcome of something.

The game even encourages this - with secret rolls. If 'fudging' was such a sin against the game - all rolls would be encouraged to be open and in front of the players (many groups *DO THIS* because they are so against fudging). You can't however - have secret rolls and encouraged adjudication without accepting that the GM can modify the results and you wouldn't know.

I'm aware, but trawl around the forums and you'll see a lot of people get all righteous indignation about altering the sacred d20 but don't care a fig if you suddenly throw an idiot ball straight at the monster because "fudge" just means dice alteration to them.

Really treating the whole thing of "GMs are encouraged to make things fun and...

Because one is cheating, the other isn't. The GM is a player too. Having the monster use sub-optimal tactics is a fair, and by-the-rules way of playing the game. Players do sub-optimal things all the time. But changing the dice is just cheating. From a player's perspective, the gm has everything in the world to control, if he wants to help or hurt the players. But the dice aren't his. The dice are fair.

Just as an example, if a tough monster boss is about to kill my character, and rolls 2 natural 1's behind the screen, I wouldn't believe it. And if I think the GM is cheating, I'll quit. TPK is preferable to an unfair game. If there are no stakes, if the players always survive by the skin of their teeth, then where's the fun? They'll never feel like they earned any victory, because they won't have. In that case, just play diceless. It's the same result, but not dishonest.

I always roll openly (except for knowledge and perception checks, things to keep players uncertain about what happened).

Liberty's Edge

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Ckorik wrote:
I did have to respond to this - because he one playtester that documented and went out of their way to not fudge *ever* (Collette) got ROASTED because her table plays *brutal hardcore*.

I ran the playtest with no fudging of rolls whatsoever. I had rules errors, but frankly no more than Colette, I think. Or not many more, anyway. My players never had a TPK, including in Chapter 5. And that's even sans Hero Points after Chapter 1 because we routinely and collectively forgot their existence.

Ckorik wrote:
The *OVERWHELMING* consensus of the vast majority of the game (including the Devs who while validating she had a right to play that way - admitted they don't balance for that kind of play) assume that the GM is fudging in some way to keep the game balance in check.

That's not actually what was said. There are several elements of Colette's play that were (and indeed are) abnormal and not what the Devs expected, with no fudging being far from the top of the list (all monsters using near perfect tactics and having full knowledge of all PC stats comes to mind).

That's not to say that Colette's play style is bad, but they got crap for it due to reasons that had very little to do with fudging rolls.

Ckorik wrote:
That absolutely will go both ways in any normal game - you can't 'take it easy' on the players without *accepting* that you alter the dice rolls on occasion.

My objection was not to fudging. Fudging is fine as long as people know it's that kind of game. My objection was, and is, to fudging specifically to remove success on something from the PCs. To make the PCs fail something where they actually succeeded. Doing that is pretty definitionally a sign of bad GMing.

Okay, maybe doing it once a campaign for plot reasons or something is acceptable (though I'm dubious even then)...but the comment I responded to indicated a pattern of fudging Saves as a reason spell casters were bad. If fudging to make PCs fail is happening often enough to impact how good a Class is that's a bad GM.

Dark Archive

Mabtik wrote:
Stuff

Just another idea, until level 5 or so, I would focus on cantrip evocation damage and use goblin pox and demoralize to increase your chance of maximizing damage for the greatest period of time (or until the enemy spends an action and succeeds a saving throw, which is still lowered by the sickened condition). I would also see if you could switch out a cantrip or two for chill touch (targeting a save you don’t have for a cantrip) and telekinetic projectile (for a higher damage single target attack roll spell since you don’t want your allies to be struck by splash damage from acid splash, or do you?).


Hiruma Kai wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:

Ok, I see. By trigger, I was thinking something like: Touched by an evil-aligned creature, an orc or my mum.

Or, for a bank vault: If it's outside opening hours.
Anyway, I don't think a DM will allow you to cast a Cone of Cold for the price of saying "Abracadabra". That would look too much of a rule abuse.

Fair enough. They don't give any examples for triggers, so I assumed you describe the criteria as something that the caster could identify with their senses. Wearing full plate and wielding an axe. Green skinned. Speaking Orcish.

Didn't realize it could detect alignment as well as race.

I agree. The lack of examples makes everyone choose his own triggers. But I think the whole trigger thing is very story related. The goal is to protect a room or object. Ultimately, it's the DM who will decide what is possible, to enhance his plot and make the adventure entertaining.


K1 wrote:

Heroism.

Are there any other buffs for a melee?

Well, that also buffs defense, so it's not full comparison, but...

Fighter
50% chance to hit, 25% chance to crit + 45% chance to hit, 5% crit.
(.5 + .25*2)+(.45 + .05 *2) = 1.55
2d12+4 = 17 * 1.55
=26.35

Now with Heroism.
(.5 + .30*2)+(.5 + .05*2) = 1.7
17 * 1.7
= 28.9

diff: 2.55

vs searing light (against a normal target).
50% chance to hit, 10% chance for double
(.50 + .05 * 2) = 0.6
17.5 * .6 = 10.5

10.5 / 2.55 = 4.12

So Heroism takes 5 rounds before it is better than searing light (ignoring the defense bonus). Not worth it at level 5 (killing something faster will reduce damage you take). Probably not even by level 7 if you know you will make saves. But it's a go-to at higher levels.

Haste (3rd fighter attack):
20% chance to hit, 5% chance to crit.
.2+.05*2 = .3
17 * .3 = 5.1

Haste (3rd dragon barb attack):
10% chance to hit, 5% chance to crit
.1+.05*2 = .2
2d12+4+4 = 21
21 * .2 = 4.2

So only 3 rounds for haste to be better. Still wouldn't use it at level 5. But again, it scales as the fighter/barb damage scale. So it makes a good go-to at higher level.


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Haste is better for straight damage, heroism is better for survivability due to the bonus on saves; And if the team doesn't need to rest it can last for 2 fights, which would give you the ~5 rounds of combat. (Also better perception/skill if needed before and/or after the fight).


Temperans wrote:
Haste is better for straight damage, heroism is better for survivability due to the bonus on saves; And if the team doesn't need to rest it can last for 2 fights, which would give you the ~5 rounds of combat. (Also better perception/skill if needed before and/or after the fight).

Simply this.


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Deadmanwalking wrote:


I ran the playtest with no fudging of rolls whatsoever. I had rules errors, but frankly no more than Colette, I think. Or not many more, anyway. My players never had a TPK, including in Chapter 5. And that's even sans Hero Points after Chapter 1 because we routinely and collectively forgot their existence.

And my point was - fudging isn't just about rolls - it's about how the entire game plays - because it's a game and the GM is supposed to adjudicate for a fun experience - there is always fudging going to be going on, a player can't really know - and the way over level enemies works in PF2 - if a player suspects that it's happening - well the rules are setup to make sure they fail more than succeed, and re-enforce that feeling.

We played straight - and had 3 tpk's (2 in the first adventure) - oddly every single monster that killed us - was altered - replaying that now with the new monsters - the game was much different. It was validating.

Your statement up there just ignores that fact.

Deadmanwalking wrote:
That's not actually what was said.

I have to ask what you refer to here - because the devs did indeed state flatly that they don't balance for her kind of play but feel it's a valid playstyle. If you don't follow the logic that they expect GM's to play monsters dumb to encourage a game - then that discussion would require another thread. I don't really want to get into the weeds over this as it was an illustrative point - I happen to agree with the majority that the game is more fun when it's not a strict simulation.

Deadmanwalking wrote:
That's not to say that Colette's play style is bad, but they got crap for it due to reasons that had very little to do with fudging rolls.

Not arguing if it was bad or not - but I feel pretty confident based on posted play-logs that their group is 100% no fudge - the entire playstyle seems like it would depend on it.

Deadmanwalking wrote:


My objection was not to fudging. Fudging is fine as long as people know it's that kind of game. My objection was, and is, to fudging specifically to remove success on something from the PCs. To make the PCs fail something where they actually succeeded. Doing that is pretty definitionally a sign of bad GMing.

Yep - it's a sign of bad GMing - it doesn't mean he has a "s#!+ty GM". I see this tossed around way to much and it isn't really helpful - most new GM's need to spend a good deal of time in the weeds before they understand that tabletop RPG's are neither a book, nor a computer game. There are some epiphanies that need to be had before you really can get over the idea that you aren't the author of the story - but rather the players are.

As an aside - it was redundant - the OP wouldn't be worried about the GM altering the result if they felt confidant in the GM. I expect that is a different topic but the root of the 'edition anxiety' all stems from places that take away the players ability to 'ensure success' - if you think about it even for a moment you can follow that path to the root of the issue - which is fear of player agency being taken away or denied - which is only compounded if they have a GM that isn't 'super'. It's also (if you follow PFS threads at all) a huge reason why PFS is so popular - it doesn't take a statistical study to notice the overwhelming majority of problems with PFS stem from players wanting 0 GM variance.


Mellored wrote:
K1 wrote:
But trust me, a 10% extra Normal hit and 10% extra critical hit is too much.
I'll trust my math. Unless I made a mistake somewhere.

I made a mistake somewhere.

I forgot to add the barbs weapon specialization.
I will also add in 1d6 damage from a rune, cause why not.

Fighter vs Barb:

level 4 doesn't change.
Fighter
50% chance to hit, 25% chance to crit + 45% chance to hit, 5% crit.
(.5 + .25*2)+(.45 + .05 *2) = 1.55
2d12+4 = 17 * 1.55
=26.35
Barbarian
50% hit, 15% crit + 35% hit, 5% crit
(.5 + .15*2)+(.35 + .05 *2) = 1.25
2d12+4+4 = 21 * 1.25
= 26.25

To toss Giant barb
2d12+4+6 = 22 * 1.25
=27.5

Level 15.

Fighter
50% chance to hit, 25% chance to crit + 45% chance to hit, 5% crit.
(.5 + .25*2)+(.45 + .05 *2) = 1.55
3d12+5+8+1d6 = 36 * 1.55
=50.375

Dragon Barbarian
50% hit, 15% crit + 35% hit, 5% crit
(.5 + .15*2)+(.35 + .05 *2) = 1.25
3d12+5+6+16+1d6 = 50 * 1.25
= 62.5

giant.
3d12+5+6+18+1d6 = 52 * 1.25
=65


So barbs do more damage than fighters at high levels.
Not how the defense scales.

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I do not see playing all opponents as dedicated only to killing all PCs no matter the cost to them and no matter their motivation as not fudging, but as completely ignoring the setting's internal logic in favor of obliterating the PCs "by the rules". Except of course for the rules stating that most opponents would not try to obliterate PCs no matter what.


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The Raven Black wrote:
I do not see playing all opponents as dedicated only to killing all PCs no matter the cost to them and no matter their motivation as not fudging, but as completely ignoring the setting's internal logic in favor of obliterating the PCs "by the rules". Except of course for the rules stating that most opponents would not try to obliterate PCs no matter what.

Considering there is a rule that "only the most vicious creatures attack a downed PC", it's definitely fudging if every enemy operates on that paradigm.

It's fine to play it that way, but to not acknowledge that particular piece as a "fudge" seems unfair. The "Rule of Cool" is a fudge, that particular change to the game is really no different than the "Rule of Cool" in terms of fudging (but in reverse).

Call it the "Rule of Gruel" or whatever, but it's still fudging.


Midnightoker wrote:
The Raven Black wrote:
I do not see playing all opponents as dedicated only to killing all PCs no matter the cost to them and no matter their motivation as not fudging, but as completely ignoring the setting's internal logic in favor of obliterating the PCs "by the rules". Except of course for the rules stating that most opponents would not try to obliterate PCs no matter what.

Considering there is a rule that "only the most vicious creatures attack a downed PC", it's definitely fudging if every enemy operates on that paradigm.

It's fine to play it that way, but to not acknowledge that particular piece as a "fudge" seems unfair. The "Rule of Cool" is a fudge, that particular change to the game is really no different than the "Rule of Cool" in terms of fudging (but in reverse).

Call it the "Rule of Gruel" or whatever, but it's still fudging.

At least, for PF2, you don't have to fudge:

"Creatures cannot be reduced to fewer than 0 Hit Points. When most creatures reach 0 Hit Points, they die and are removed from play unless the attack was nonlethal, in which case they are instead knocked out for a significant amount of time (usually 1 minute or more). When undead and construct creatures reach 0 Hit Points, they are destroyed.

Player characters, their companions, and other significant characters and creatures don’t automatically die when they reach 0 Hit Points. Instead, they are knocked out and are at risk of death. At the GM’s discretion, villains, powerful monsters, special NPCs, and enemies with special abilities that are likely to bring them back to the fight (like ferocity, regeneration, or healing magic) can use these rules as well."

Most monsters will assume you're dead once downed. So, the only case a monster will attack a downed PC is if it realizes the PC isn't dead and if it's a valid combat tactic (highly improbable) or they have any reason to prefer killing someone than winning the fight/surviving it with the least amount of damage.


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Midnightoker wrote:
The Raven Black wrote:
I do not see playing all opponents as dedicated only to killing all PCs no matter the cost to them and no matter their motivation as not fudging, but as completely ignoring the setting's internal logic in favor of obliterating the PCs "by the rules". Except of course for the rules stating that most opponents would not try to obliterate PCs no matter what.

Considering there is a rule that "only the most vicious creatures attack a downed PC", it's definitely fudging if every enemy operates on that paradigm.

It's fine to play it that way, but to not acknowledge that particular piece as a "fudge" seems unfair. The "Rule of Cool" is a fudge, that particular change to the game is really no different than the "Rule of Cool" in terms of fudging (but in reverse).

Call it the "Rule of Gruel" or whatever, but it's still fudging.

It is simply Normal because of how heals and the dying status work.

If a creature knows that, in a world full of magic, a downed character could be renewed in an instant, then that creature will definitely make for sure that the character is definitely dead before moving on another.

Or else the creature could, depends the situation ofc, put his own life at risk.

Monsters don't have to assume, unless they are Child who never experienced, or got instructed, about how magic works.

The dying condition for the mobs is pure l meant to simplify things, and even with this a monster who fought with adventurers know that they could be healed even if downed.


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There was certainly a line quoted during the playtest to that effect in the original thread where the tactics of that party were discussed that stated:

"Only the most vicious creatures will attack an unconscious PC" but maybe that specificity was removed.

Quote:
If a creature knows that, in a world full of magic, a downed character could be renewed in an instant

Considering the rules specifically state that anyone else other than PCs and specially deemed GM creatures normally just die when they reach 0 HP, that's not at all a fair assumption.

Now if the creature rolled a Seek, a Medicine, or otherwise had seen them stand up already due to healing, then presumably that's fine.

It's also ridiculous because it allows the creatures to have GM knowledge (how does the creature know the difference between Dying 1 and Dying 4 without even looking? are these creatures attacking all corpses that fall?)

Whether or not meta-gaming is illegal is another matter, but I think it's pretty big stretch to say monsters are aware of special PC rules when they've likely downed several others before without such rules.

Presumably under the same rules all recall knowledge checks are useless because every character has meta-game knowledge.

It was even stated that the creatures had perfect knowledge during the combats, which objectively isn't "fair" in the slightest.

Now if that person attacked already dead bodies always at least they could say they are consistent, that however was not the case. Once combat started it was a war frame/planes walker simulation where the PCs were operating a chess board with out of game knowledge, which is of course illegal since it violates all the knowledge rules and general spirit of a Role Playing Game.

It's no different than a PC not knowing the square of an enemy and attacking it "randomly" or skipping ahead in an AP and opening a secret door without a proper Seek check.


I expect creatures to have dealt with adventurers in the past, and not being simply npcs.

It is related to logic.
Nothing else.

Monster, are simply meant to be corpses once their hp reach 0 to simplify stuff, but there's no difference between an evil wizard character and an evil wizard npc boss of this adventure chapter.

Just to make an example.

No prof is needed.

If somebody sees a healer, then he simply tries not to leave him the possibility to heal. And the best way to do that is to terminate a downed character.

If you want to let monsters play dumb Ot suicide you have to know that its your own choice.

Knowing how the magic works, everyone will be suspicious of an enemy which falls on his knees.

Not necessarily because of a check, but because possibilities.

He fell down.

He could be faking it or eventually be dead, but since i don't care I still continue hit him until his head is cruahed. I don't want to be stabbed because I didn't care.

What you suggest is some stupid fiction like game of thrones, where the vipera fights the mountain and beats him to death.

But since Martin doesn't know about anatomy he thought that given then mountain size a merely stick wouldn't had been enough to kill him.

Then everybody in that world was surprised to see a dead man returning from death.

That is the situation I want to avoid, since everybody knows magic.

It would be illogica otherwise.


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K1 wrote:


If a creature knows that, in a world full of magic, a downed character could be renewed in an instant, then that creature will definitely make for sure that the character is definitely dead before moving on another.

Or else the creature could, depends the situation ofc, put his own life at risk.

Monsters don't have to assume, unless they are Child who never experienced, or got instructed, about how magic works.

The dying condition for the mobs is pure l meant to simplify things, and even with this a monster who fought with adventurers know that they could be healed even if downed.

If a character spends an action to heal a downed ally, that's normally a minimum three actions spent, assuming the healer starts adjacent to their ally. One to heal, one for the character to grab their weapon, one to stand up (kip up and unarmed can reduce this). More likely, the healer needs to spend another action to cast at range or to move close, and the downed character may have to spend an action to pick up another item (shield), move into position, activate a stance, or try and recover further so they don't drop again straight away. That's a lot of wasted actions, especially if the person drops again the next turn because they come back with only a few hit points. As a monster, it's better to let them waste the actions healing. You should start attacking another target, rather than spend your actions finishing a foe mid-fight, so you can maximize your chances of dropping all the enemies and surviving the fight.

In universe, once one guy drops you probably focus on his buddy who is still swinging a pointy bit of metal in your face. This happens in a lot of media if you think of it, big bad swats one hero and another jumps up to take their attention away before they finish the first guy off. For the enemy to ignore the other guy wailing on them and carefully stamp out the first guy while he's down, they would have to hopelessly out match their new opponent, enough to ignore their attacks.

To summarize, at the very least I think the choice to attack another standing character is a good enough choice that we don't have to pretend like the GM is constantly fudging monster choices just to let PCs survive. A character who stood up with low health really isn't much of a threat still, and it takes a lot of actions to make that happen, and the high health characters are more of a threat at that point. And the in-universe justifications for switching target actually make more sense than finishing the person off for most foes that want to survive the fight.

(All this comes with the disclaimer that some enemies might ignore self preservation and relentlessly kill one target at a time)


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K1 wrote:

I expect creatures to have dealt with adventurers in the past, and not being simply npcs.

It is related to logic.
Nothing else.

Monster, are simply meant to be corpses once their hp reach 0 to simplify stuff, but there's no difference between an evil wizard character and an evil wizard npc boss of this adventure chapter.

Just to make an example.

No prof is needed.

If somebody sees a healer, then he simply tries not to leave him the possibility to heal. And the best way to do that is to terminate a downed character.

If you want to let monsters play dumb Ot suicide you have to know that its your own choice.

Knowing how the magic works, everyone will be suspicious of an enemy which falls on his knees.

Not necessarily because of a check, but because possibilities.

He fell down.

He could be faking it or eventually be dead, but since i don't care I still continue hit him until his head is cruahed. I don't want to be stabbed because I didn't care.

What you suggest is some stupid fiction like game of thrones, where the vipera fights the mountain and beats him to death.

But since Martin doesn't know about anatomy he thought that given then mountain size a merely stick wouldn't had been enough to kill him.

Then everybody in that world was surprised to see a dead man returning from death.

That is the situation I want to avoid, since everybody knows magic.

It would be illogica otherwise.

I 100% disagree with you. I've played numerous PF and D&D games. I've never attacked a downed character on the assumption that it could go back up. I always did it on the certainty it will go back up (because of regeneration in general). When there is a healer, I still don't attack downed characters, I attack the healer.

When I play a healer, I very rarely heal downed characters, I prefer to heal standing ones as:
- They won't lose an action to get up from prone and maybe recover their weapon.
- Being downed is actually a way of saving his ass, as it's often less dangerous to stay downed for a few rounds than to go up to take another beating.

Attacking downed character is a suboptimal strategy. So, if your monsters have so much knowledge of the world, I assume they have some basic strategy, and they'll never attack downed characters unless they have a very good reason to do so. If you add the fact that most people will die at 0 hp, it's attacking a downed character which is metagaming, not leaving them in peace.


If an enemy ignores self preservation it is definitely ok.

Otherwise they could even play the way you do, by healing a downed ally ( that said, most of the encounters will be against monsters with no healings. So while the could work to avoid enemy healings, they won't be able to heal themselves. They could flee instead ).

It would even more tactical in terms of encounter.

The problem here is that is a fantasy world. And fantasy stuff happens.

It is hard that somebody drops dead while he has tons of hp. A mob will need 5 hits or more ro kill another mob of the same lvl.

That's why stuff like a thief threating a party member could make you laugh.

Stay back, or i will kill him.

You are going to use your 1d4 weapon against my friend which has 190 hp? Go ahead please.

Healings are the same.
You know they exists because you have seen how those work.


SuperBidi wrote:
K1 wrote:

I expect creatures to have dealt with adventurers in the past, and not being simply npcs.

It is related to logic.
Nothing else.

Monster, are simply meant to be corpses once their hp reach 0 to simplify stuff, but there's no difference between an evil wizard character and an evil wizard npc boss of this adventure chapter.

Just to make an example.

No prof is needed.

If somebody sees a healer, then he simply tries not to leave him the possibility to heal. And the best way to do that is to terminate a downed character.

If you want to let monsters play dumb Ot suicide you have to know that its your own choice.

Knowing how the magic works, everyone will be suspicious of an enemy which falls on his knees.

Not necessarily because of a check, but because possibilities.

He fell down.

He could be faking it or eventually be dead, but since i don't care I still continue hit him until his head is cruahed. I don't want to be stabbed because I didn't care.

What you suggest is some stupid fiction like game of thrones, where the vipera fights the mountain and beats him to death.

But since Martin doesn't know about anatomy he thought that given then mountain size a merely stick wouldn't had been enough to kill him.

Then everybody in that world was surprised to see a dead man returning from death.

That is the situation I want to avoid, since everybody knows magic.

It would be illogica otherwise.

I 100% disagree with you. I've played numerous PF and D&D games. I've never attacked a downed character on the assumption that it could go back up. I always did it on the certainty it will go back up (because of regeneration in general). When there is a healer, I still don't attack downed characters, I attack the healer.

When I play a healer, I very rarely heal downed characters, I prefer to heal standing ones as:
- They won't lose an action to get up from prone and maybe recover their weapon.
- Being downed is actually a way of saving his ass, as it's often...

The fact you use or not a heal Action on downed member depends on the situation.

I happened to be knocked out in the first round and got refulled an instant after i fell.

Sometimes with 1 downed member and 1 enemy, we all moved on the enemy.

There is no right or bad when the scenario is not even mentioned.

Apart from that, i rule the same stuff for everybody. But obviously i don't cheat by knowing the party composition.

Also depends the creatures i am moving, their possibilities and intelligence.

Throwing a rock with a giant on the farthest character whatever his class could be a nice tactic for the giant, because he will know that closer enemies will be more used to fight.

Same goes with magic.

If the creatures don't know about magic or are stupid, they could wait 1 healing on a downed character to make sure that next time he stay dead instead.

Because even simpletons learn.
Eventually they could overkilling by attacking him for rounds after his death.

Nothing strange here.

And guess what, they never know if he cheated his death or went down for sure. And they wouldn't care.

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