One thing bothering me on swashbuckler


Swashbuckler Playtest


First, if we can agree that this games math is a lot tighter than 1e and due to that smaller discrepencies are more notable.

If I wanted to play a braggart swashbuckler.

I need to focus on acrobatics (dex) and intimidation (cha)

But then I need STR to do more damage, but lets go suboptimal and put STR lower.

you are in melee you need CON, but lets go more suboptimal and put CON lower as well.

You cannot start with 2 18's by design, so from the start 1 of these skills is going to be 1 behind.

You cannot scale 2 skills at the same pace, This means one of these skills will be 2 behind up until a high level.

This means one of your need to succeed skillchecks will be behind by up to 3 points. This is substantial given the lower average success rate on an optimally statted/built character in 2e.

I just dont see it. Mathwise, why would i ever invest into charisma over dexterity? tumble can be used repeatedly and only risk is if you fight an enemy with reactions, wich you can take feats to fix. so that immediately puts charisma to 16 instead of 18 (if you put points into it at all but we giving the benefit of the doubt). 1 behind, and given intimidations very limited effect on a per target basis, it also makes no sense to put intimidation before acrobatics. so thats 3 behind.

is the static +1 you get from having panache supposed to help alleviate this issue?

so at best im always -2 behind on charisma as a braggart assuming i dont build my character like a bonehead.

I want to not just be a charismatic fighter, i want to feel rewarded for being one by the mechanics of the class itself.

currently i feel punished, not rewarded.

I feel similarly but less so for fencer, can be used more often but FF is common, but you can take a feat early on for a secondary effect to keep using it. that mostly fixes itself.


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Having a 16 instead of an 18 just means you have 1 less of a stat bonus for 50% of the levels.

Once you hit level 5, the 16 goes to 18 but the 18 just goes to 19, so the bonus is the same. At 10, the 18 becomes 20, but things even out again at level 15 until level 20.

While the swashbuckler probably should have more things they can do with Cha, any character starting with any stat at 16 is just fine.


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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

While that's true, PossibleCabbage, MartialMasters might have a bigger point about skill training compounding the issue.

Although I would say the obvious solution is to advance the skill tied to the lower attribute first.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
PossibleCabbage wrote:
Having a 16 instead of an 18 just means you have 1 less of a stat bonus for 50% of the levels.

I mean, spending half the game behind on a class that really focuses combat isn't exactly great, even if it's not the end of the world.

Either way the greater issue is that a Braggart or Fencer has a lot of stats you want to invest in. Four stats per ability increase is nice, but you reasonably need to put at least some attention on everything except Int, too.


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Don't forget that the different actions to gain Panache also target different DCs.

Even with a higher skill bonus, trying to Tumble Through an agile enemy might not give you better chances of success than Demoralizing him if he has a low Will save.


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It seem's that choosing a style should do more than determine how you gain Panache. Limiting the level of MAD is something it should also address.


I assume the reason to go Braggart is to make the best use of the Demoralize action. The loss of damage from devoting point builds to CHA instead of STR is supposed to be made up from the penalty to checks and DCs. Another benefit is that it is safe: you don't have to be next to the target (like the Gymnast and Fencer) or risk taking falling damage if you fail (like the general panache maneuvers). And unlike Create a Diversion, you can keep spamming it w/o penalty.

My group just got a Braggart Swashbuckler, so I'll have more to say later.


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I fail to spot the problem . You can’t get two 18s but never have been able to. In 1E some builds would really struggle to get one 18

The actions target different saves and the demoralise has a better benefit than tumble through

And then you return to the 16 vs 18 debate which was beaten into the ground on launch

And as for lower strength being “sub optimal” - compared to what ? Higher strength would mean lower charisma so you don’t benefit from demoralise which is a powerful debuff. It is a trade off - not sub optimal. They are two very different things


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How much does strength really matter to the fencer or the braggart? Each 2 points of strength are just +1 damage on each hit. Sure, +1s will add up over time but from my experience playtesting the swashbuckler you're not likely to make a lot of swings anyway. Like my routine is usually "tumble behind, finisher, raise buckler".

I'm not going to leave it at 10, or 8, but I think a 14 is fine.


Felinus wrote:
It seem's that choosing a style should do more than determine how you gain Panache. Limiting the level of MAD is something it should also address.

This would be nice


EberronHoward wrote:

I assume the reason to go Braggart is to make the best use of the Demoralize action. The loss of damage from devoting point builds to CHA instead of STR is supposed to be made up from the penalty to checks and DCs. Another benefit is that it is safe: you don't have to be next to the target (like the Gymnast and Fencer) or risk taking falling damage if you fail (like the general panache maneuvers). And unlike Create a Diversion, you can keep spamming it w/o penalty.

My group just got a Braggart Swashbuckler, so I'll have more to say later.

The pros don't seem to outweigh the cons

And those things you first mention don't really balance or 1 to 1 and you can still just stat your character to have them better anyways instead of leaning on a limited style.


Lanathar wrote:

I fail to spot the problem . You can’t get two 18s but never have been able to. In 1E some builds would really struggle to get one 18

The actions target different saves and the demoralise has a better benefit than tumble through

And then you return to the 16 vs 18 debate which was beaten into the ground on launch

And as for lower strength being “sub optimal” - compared to what ? Higher strength would mean lower charisma so you don’t benefit from demoralise which is a powerful debuff. It is a trade off - not sub optimal. They are two very different things

1e isn't 2e. Let's not compare different systems.

They do Target different saves. But if one stat is lower than the other it doesn't really see that benefit so it's at best a wash.

Compared to not having higher strength? It's damage you simply cannot ever make up for once you choose not to have it. Ever. You spec into charisma for your limited style option when you already have a base system tied to your main stat that can take feats to shore up it's weaknesses and then you can have a sorcerer or Bard whose main stat is charisma be the face/intimidation/deception from an optimal stand point and not have to hurt their combat potential just to utilize.

This ties into my thoughts that while a charisma martial is an awesome concept. It is not currently well supported with swashbuckler at all.


PossibleCabbage wrote:

How much does strength really matter to the fencer or the braggart? Each 2 points of strength are just +1 damage on each hit. Sure, +1s will add up over time but from my experience playtesting the swashbuckler you're not likely to make a lot of swings anyway. Like my routine is usually "tumble behind, finisher, raise buckler".

I'm not going to leave it at 10, or 8, but I think a 14 is fine.

You actually stand next to the Target to take a 3 action attack or 3 separate attacks? That's death without a dedicated healer.

Mine are more like gain panache. Finisher. Move away from Target forcing them to waste an action to get to you.

I wouldn't main tank with a class that has to utilize extra actions to do what amounts to what a fighter can do normally. At least not until level 10+

And if you put strength to 14 your either going to be 2-4 behind in athletics or intimidation or deception. Behind acrobatics. 6 for my unbreakable goblin with bouncy.


Just want to clarify I appreciate the discussion and please don't take my posts as being hostile or narrow minded. I have a goblin braggart and this is what I'm finding hence the tones of my posts.

And his starting stats is 12str. 18dex. 10con. 10int. 8wis. 16cha.

So it's not like I'm disregarding the style I'm actually trying to utilize it.

Dark Archive

To answer OP’s question, I don’t think you should ever prioritize charisma over dexterity. Dexterity is too integral to the entire character. I think the key point of having the three types— demoralize, feint, and athletics—is to give options to target different saves with each style having two it’s proficient in: tumble for reflex, demoralize for will, feint for perception, and athletics for fortitude. Unfortunately, as is, I wouldn’t take swashbuckler over either the rogue or the fighter, as they both do the swashbuckling thing just as well, if not better with higher damage to boot (at least that’s how it appears, and I could be completely wrong). Still, the swashbuckler does a better job at doing what the Firebrand Braggart, so there’s that. Honestly, I’m just looking forward to the swashbuckler’s dedication to get flat-footed tumble on a rogue.


Martialmasters wrote:
You actually stand next to the Target to take a 3 action attack or 3 separate attacks? That's death without a dedicated healer.

Its a playtest character, I was trying to see how often I can fish for retorts. Plus it's a 9th level character, so I can use a reaction to roll with it to get out of trouble.

But the point is that the Swashbuckler is not usually making multiple attacks per round, unlike some other martial classes. So strength isn't that useful beyond carrying capacity and athletics checks.


PossibleCabbage wrote:
Martialmasters wrote:
You actually stand next to the Target to take a 3 action attack or 3 separate attacks? That's death without a dedicated healer.

Its a playtest character, I was trying to see how often I can fish for retorts. Plus it's a 9th level character, so I can use a reaction to roll with it to get out of trouble.

But the point is that the Swashbuckler is not usually making multiple attacks per round, unlike some other matial classes. So strength isn't that useful beyond carrying capacity and athletics checks.

I'd argue it's just as important. Attacking less doesn't make it less important it just means your going to be doing less damage. And swashbuckler does less damage overall than say barbarian and obviously fighter. Possibly ranger. Might be on par or better than monk.

Liberty's Edge

Sure, but a lot of that damage is from finishers. The difference between 3d6+3 and 3d6+1 (which is a little over a 15% damage decrease) is much smaller than the difference between the 1d6+3 and 1d6+1 (which is around a 30% reduction in damage) we might be talking about with a finesse Fighter. And only gets smaller as you level, really, as your non-Str damage on finishers advances faster than almost anyone else's. Your DPR doesn't due to the 'once per turn' factor and the advantages other Classes have, but the percentage of your damage represented by the difference in Str goes down fairly rapidly.

Barbarians are something of an exception to the above (as they also receive immense in-Class damage bonuses), but need high Str for other reasons (it's almost obligatory as their to-hit ability).


Deadmanwalking wrote:

Sure, but a lot of that damage is from finishers. The difference between 3d6+3 and 3d6+1 (which is a little over a 15% damage decrease) is much smaller than the difference between the 1d6+3 and 1d6+1 (which is around a 30% reduction in damage) we might be talking about with a finesse Fighter. And only gets smaller as you level, really, as your non-Str damage on finishers advances faster than almost anyone else's. Your DPR doesn't due to the 'once per turn' factor and the advantages other Classes have, but the percentage of your damage represented by the difference in Str goes down fairly rapidly.

Barbarians are something of an exception to the above (as they also receive immense in-Class damage bonuses), but need high Str for other reasons (it's almost obligatory as their to-hit ability).

The problem is the way they are going about these new characters at a base level. You don't tack on these supplemental pluses to damage and skills with the intention of using them to offset your inability to spec your stats effectively. Because you can always choose to spec that way anyway. Or you get future splat books down the line and at some point it's going to unbalance something.

No those pluses need to be what sets the class apart. Not handouts to try to get them sightly under par. This just showcase's a bit of an underbaked design philosophy.

It won't break the game to give Dex to damage I know they are against it though.

It won't break the game to give charisma more mechanical benefit to braggart and fencer.

They clearly are against it but they are trying to make janky workarounds and tacked on effects instead of changing base mechanics for the class itself. It doesn't marry into the base game system well currently.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Deadmanwalking wrote:
Your DPR doesn't due to the 'once per turn' factor

That assumes you're running a build based around attacking once, but Swashbucklers can benefit from agile weapons and even have feats that encourage multiple attacks, so that's not necessarily true either.

Liberty's Edge

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Martialmasters wrote:
The problem is the way they are going about these new characters at a base level. You don't tack on these supplemental pluses to damage and skills with the intention of using them to offset your inability to spec your stats effectively. Because you can always choose to spec that way anyway. Or you get future splat books down the line and at some point it's going to unbalance something.

There is no such 'inability'. You can go Str 16 if you feel like it...but the way finishers work makes it less of a problem than for many other Classes if you don't do that, and the rewards for going Cha instead are very real.

It's a choice you make. The Gymnast has higher damage per attack...but only slightly if relying on finishers, and the Braggart (and, to a lesser degree, Fencer) gets serious debuff potential (Demoralize is a spectacular action) that they can use very regularly in exchange for that lower damage.

Martialmasters wrote:
No those pluses need to be what sets the class apart. Not handouts to try to get them sightly under par. This just showcase's a bit of an underbaked design philosophy.

Making Str a smaller percentage of damage and thus allowing the balance between it and other stats to shift is a perfectly reasonable design philosophy. Is this implementation perfect? Maybe not, but the philosophy is fine.

Martialmasters wrote:

It won't break the game to give Dex to damage I know they are against it though.

It won't break the game to give charisma more mechanical benefit to braggart and fencer.

Sure, but it might make the Gymnast really bad mechanically if you take it too far. The current Braggart and Fencer are not cripppled or bad compared to the Gymnast, so you have to be pretty careful about adding more things onto them.

Martialmasters wrote:
They clearly are against it but they are trying to make janky workarounds and tacked on effects instead of changing base mechanics for the class itself. It doesn't marry into the base game system well currently.

Making Dex to damage a thing for Swashbuckler involves either killing Gymnast completely, or making Str somehow much better in some other way. Which seems to me to be the definition of a 'janky workaround' as it's removing Strength's major advantage then trying to compensate by giving it something else.

And killing Gymnast loses a lot of cool stuff, so that's a problem, too.

Squiggit wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:
Your DPR doesn't due to the 'once per turn' factor
That assumes you're running a build based around attacking once, but Swashbucklers can benefit from agile weapons and even have feats that encourage multiple attacks, so that's not necessarily true either.

Fair enough. Builds doing that probably are better off going Gymnast for higher Str and thus more damage per non-finisher attack, though.


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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I'm definitely strongly against Swashbuckler getting Dex to damage.

Let's not bring that whole kettle of fish back.

I also think, in terms of Strength, it's important to remember the damage buff from Panache. A 12 Str Swashbuckler with Panache hits as hard as a 16 Str Fighter. I think that damage bonus is intentional, to let you not focus on Strength as much.


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I don't want dex-to-damage anywhere other than the thief rogue.

The swashbuckler should be, based on thematics like a ~14 Str class. You need some upper body strength for all that chandelier swinging, etc.


MaxAstro wrote:

I'm definitely strongly against Swashbuckler getting Dex to damage.

Let's not bring that whole kettle of fish back.

I also think, in terms of Strength, it's important to remember the damage buff from Panache. A 12 Str Swashbuckler with Panache hits as hard as a 16 Str Fighter. I think that damage bonus is intentional, to let you not focus on Strength as much.

That again is exactly what I said. Something tacked on to try to get swashbuckler to ubderpar but good enough by their standards.

It doesn't change your focus on strength at all. If it didn't stack with strength you'd have a point.


PossibleCabbage wrote:

I don't want dex-to-damage anywhere other than the thief rogue.

The swashbuckler should be, based on thematics like a ~14 Str class. You need some upper body strength for all that chandelier swinging, etc.

That has nothing to do with mechanics.

Unless they change how these new classes interact with base character mechanics then they will always be one of two ways.

They will either underperform compared to their core counterparts or will be given rediculous abilities to try to make up for their core mechanics shortcomings Wich... Is just then overpowering something to try to get it to work because they know it doesn't take.

Swashbuckler is a fun idea but in practice.

1- they are mad. Wich limits build creativity. Instead of building a sound character from the ground up they are getting to piece things together like a puzzle to try and force a concept to work. It's clunky and ineffective.

2- charismatic fighter is not supported. Forcing the mad theme. Due to some odd desire to avoid letting stats do different things for different classes. Bad idea.

3-requiring additional skill checks that can fail to get an all or nothing resource feels bad. This game 65 percent success rate is considered optimal. This feels really bad. So bad that one to two turns with even slightly poor rolls feels nearly game breaking.


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Throwing my hat into the no-Dex-to-damage Swashbuckler ring


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Regardless of whether or not you like dex to damage, I think it's fair to point out that the Braggart/Fencer Swashbuckler is very MAD, one of the most MAD builds in the game.

Dex, Str and Cha are combat stats (contrast with the Wizard or Barbarian, who have one), but as a frontliner especially Con and Wis are not easily ignorable either. The only thing you can really do without is Int, which you'll probably never get a chance to boost so I hope you don't want to play a smart character.

Ultimately I don't think this is the end of the world, but it does put a much higher emphasis on making the right choices when it comes to distributing your ability scores and puts more emphasis on picking a good Ancestry than other classes.

Given that PF2 has ostensibly talked a lot about opening up character diversity, I think that's a reasonable concern to raise.

One possible player end solution is to just drop Dex and become a hellknight, but I'm not sure Paizo would like that fix either and it's pretty feat intensive.

MaxAstro wrote:
I also think, in terms of Strength, it's important to remember the damage buff from Panache. A 12 Str Swashbuckler with Panache hits as hard as a 16 Str Fighter. I think that damage bonus is intentional, to let you not focus on Strength as much.

If you're using Panache just to make up for the loss of Strength, then you're still falling behind, because martial classes have their own damage modifiers on top of that. Fighters have a faster to-hit progression. Barbarians have rage, etc.


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I feel like as a Gymnast you can safely pump Str, Dex, Con, Wis with your 4.

As a Fencer or a Braggart you can do Dex, Con, Wis, Cha.

I'm more concerned about how there's no Int-Buckler or Wis-Buckler than how "you have four useful stats."


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Squiggit wrote:
MaxAstro wrote:
I also think, in terms of Strength, it's important to remember the damage buff from Panache. A 12 Str Swashbuckler with Panache hits as hard as a 16 Str Fighter. I think that damage bonus is intentional, to let you not focus on Strength as much.
If you're using Panache just to make up for the loss of Strength, then you're still falling behind, because martial classes have their own damage modifiers on top of that. Fighters have a faster to-hit progression. Barbarians have rage, etc.

Sure, but in my opinion you shouldn't be comparing the Panache damage to a Barbarian's base damage - you should be comparing it to a Rogue's damage without Sneak Attack.

Because the real damage of the Swashbuckler comes from Finishers, which are not at all insignificant. They are in fact the largest level 1 damage boost in the game as far as I am aware - and you can theoretically land a finisher every turn.


MaxAstro wrote:
Squiggit wrote:
MaxAstro wrote:
I also think, in terms of Strength, it's important to remember the damage buff from Panache. A 12 Str Swashbuckler with Panache hits as hard as a 16 Str Fighter. I think that damage bonus is intentional, to let you not focus on Strength as much.
If you're using Panache just to make up for the loss of Strength, then you're still falling behind, because martial classes have their own damage modifiers on top of that. Fighters have a faster to-hit progression. Barbarians have rage, etc.

Sure, but in my opinion you shouldn't be comparing the Panache damage to a Barbarian's base damage - you should be comparing it to a Rogue's damage without Sneak Attack.

Because the real damage of the Swashbuckler comes from Finishers, which are not at all insignificant. They are in fact the largest level 1 damage boost in the game as far as I am aware - and you can theoretically land a finisher every turn.

If you can make the 65 percent optimal become 100 percent that isn't a theory it's wishful thinking.

Best case scenario with buffs and debuffs you are looking at about 75 percent success rate.

Those single hits don't make up for 2 attacks or 3 attacks if you attacked twice. Are unreliable. And eat up a lot of action economy trying to make work.

It's just.. bad. Even if it's fun.

Liberty's Edge

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Martialmasters wrote:

If you can make the 65 percent optimal become 100 percent that isn't a theory it's wishful thinking.

Best case scenario with buffs and debuffs you are looking at about 75 percent success rate.

Those single hits don't make up for 2 attacks or 3 attacks if you attacked twice. Are unreliable. And eat up a lot of action economy trying to make work.

It's just.. bad. Even if it's fun.

This doesn't really follow. Let's assume acquiring Panache as fairly easy.

Assuming a 65% chance to hit, the DPR for 3d6+2 (1d6 on a miss) is 11.05, rising to 13.2 if you get the to-hit odds to 75%.

The DPR of 1d6+4 three times (with the odds of the first at 65%, the second at 45%, and the third at 25%) is 11.25, rising to 13.5 with 75% odds to hit (though how you'll get that is an open question).

So that's very slightly higher on three attacks than one finisher. Assuming you have Panache, and get the same degree of debuff. Given that you have no actions to debuff and the finisher-user does that's unlikely.

Now, in practice, your damage probably is lower as a finisher user at 1st level both because you'll have less Str and because sometimes your 'acquire Panache' actions won't work (though with two tries, one of which can also be movement, your odds aren't bad), though the 'three attack' guy's damage drops a fair bit if he has to move and the finisher guy's doesn't.

Also, you'll get off debuffs the 'three attack' guy won't, and the above calculus changes as you level and get better, more damaging, finishers. Impaling or Bleeding Finisher increase the DPR of a Swashbuckler using finishers quite a lot.


Deadmanwalking wrote:
Martialmasters wrote:

If you can make the 65 percent optimal become 100 percent that isn't a theory it's wishful thinking.

Best case scenario with buffs and debuffs you are looking at about 75 percent success rate.

Those single hits don't make up for 2 attacks or 3 attacks if you attacked twice. Are unreliable. And eat up a lot of action economy trying to make work.

It's just.. bad. Even if it's fun.

This doesn't really follow. Let's assume acquiring Panache as fairly easy.

Assuming a 65% chance to hit, the DPR for 3d6+2 (1d6 on a miss) is 11.05, rising to 13.2 if you get the to-hit odds to 75%.

The DPR of 1d6+4 three times (with the odds of the first at 65%, the second at 45%, and the third at 25%) is 11.25, rising to 13.5 with 75% odds to hit (though how you'll get that is an open question).

So that's very slightly higher on three attacks than one finisher. Assuming you have Panache, and get the same degree of debuff. Given that you have no actions to debuff and the finisher-user does that's unlikely.

Now, in practice, your damage probably is lower as a finisher user at 1st level both because you'll have less Str and because sometimes your 'acquire Panache' actions won't work (though with two tries, one of which can also be movement, your odds aren't bad), though the 'three attack' guy's damage drops a fair bit if he has to move and the finisher guy's doesn't.

Also, you'll get off debuffs the 'three attack' guy won't, and the above calculus changes as you level and get better, more damaging, finishers. Impaling or Bleeding Finisher increase the DPR of a Swashbuckler using finishers quite a lot.

Yes. At level 1.

At level 10 with runes?

That's the issue it doesn't scale well.

And as you said. Your math assumes 100 percent panache success rate.

Edit: let's compare 3 actions. Rather than 3 attacks. Fighter attacks 3 times. If he misses he attacked twice. If he missed twice he attacked once.

Swashbuckler attacks twice if he used panache and used all 3 actions. If he misses his finisher he just lost almost 2 hits Worth of damage. If he failed to generate panache he has to use another action. Making his attacks go down to one.

Swashbuckler is less consistent with lower damage. The only thing they have over a fighter is a better suite of reactions. I'm only comparing combat because swashbuckler doesn't have any ooc features.

Granted I don't expect swashbuckler to do the damage of a fighter. I'm just comparing action economy and how it becomes more punishing for the swashbuckler at a faster rate.

Liberty's Edge

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Martialmasters wrote:

Yes. At level 1.

At level 10 with runes?

That's the issue it doesn't scale well.

Level 10 with Runes is actually better for the Finisher guy. A lot better, as I examine the math.

At that level, the non-finisher guy is doing 3d6+10 or so per attack, while the Finisher guy is 7d6+6 + another 4d6 Bleed. With even one round of bleeding that's a huge amount.

Specifically, at 65%, the non-finisher guy does 32.8 DPR using all three attacks. The Finisher, meanwhile, has a DPR of 33.5 with one round of bleeding. More if it's more rounds than that. And a lot more with a debuff (which they do just by getting Panache). With a 75% chance to hit it rises to 41 including one turn of bleeding.

Martialmasters wrote:
And as you said. Your math assumes 100 percent panache success rate.

This is absolutely true. An optimal Braggart, say, will probably have +23 Acrobatics and +22 Intimidate. This will be going against DC 29 on average for on-level opposition. That's a 75% chance of the Acrobatics going off, then a 70% of the Intimidate going off, so the odds of at least one working are 92.5% (assuming averages...actual numbers will vary but rarely get too much worse at on-level). That makes the actual turn average something like 37.925 damage (maybe a tad lower due to Intimidate only imposing a -1 AC instead of the -2 you can manage with Tumble Behind)...but still notably above the 32.8 of the guy just swinging away.

In short, as you get better finishers, it remains swingier (since you're putting all your eggs in one basket) but the DPR is actually definitively better going the Finisher route vs. on level foes.

Martialmasters wrote:

Edit: let's compare 3 actions. Rather than 3 attacks. Fighter attacks 3 times. If he misses he attacked twice. If he missed twice he attacked once.

Swashbuckler attacks twice if he used panache and used all 3 actions. If he misses his finisher he just lost almost 2 hits Worth of damage. If he failed to generate panache he has to use another action. Making his attacks go down to one.

Swashbuckler is less consistent with lower damage. The only thing they have over a fighter is a better suite of reactions. I'm only comparing combat because swashbuckler doesn't have any ooc features.

Granted I don't expect swashbuckler to do the damage of a fighter. I'm just comparing action economy and how it becomes more punishing for the swashbuckler at a faster rate.

The risks of going the Finisher heavy route are certainly higher (though you can make two Panache gain attempts if necessary and move as well on top of attacking), as you can fail entirely more often, and you should definitely skip it vs. real boss fights (since higher level foes are harder to acquire Panache against), but it's mostly the mechanically superior play style on average vs. most enemies if you build towards it.

And, for the record, a Greatsword Fighter at 10th has a damage of 2d12+8 and a 75% to hit (if the Swashbuckler has a 65%) and thus DPR with three attacks of about 36.56 with Certain Strike. So the Swashbuckler actually can manage roughly on par (or even above, counting the Bleed) when doing the finisher thing.


Are we sure we are reading Bleeding Finisher correctly? I initially read it as doing bleed damage equal to the number of dice you have with precise strike, not your full precise strike damage since the wording in the ability says "precise strike damage dice" not just "precise strike damage".

Liberty's Edge

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BaronOfBread wrote:
Are we sure we are reading Bleeding Finisher correctly? I initially read it as doing bleed damage equal to the number of dice you have with precise strike, not your full precise strike damage since the wording in the ability says "precise strike damage dice" not just "precise strike damage".

Mark Seifter has specifically said to do it the way I note in my above post. So yes, that's the correct reading currently.

Of course, whether it's going to be the final version is another question entirely, but it's correct at the moment.

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