Experienced Gaming Group Finding Surviving PF2E Combat to be Very Difficult


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Gaterie wrote:
Hamanu_of_Urik wrote:
The current party is composed of a bard (stays out of combat to buff), melee champion of Cayden Cailen, melee cleric of Gorum (specced into Medicine for Battle Medicine in-combat healing and out of combat treatment), and a Wildshape Druid. The current party level is 2 and we are playing The Fall of Plaguestone module.

3 casters and 1 martial, of course you're having hard time!

Try with this party composition: champion, fighter/bard, fighter/cleric, fighter/druid.

Note: when people want to show casters are balanced with martial, they cite level 4+ spells (and usually level 6+ uncommon spells). you can allow the PC to reroll as casters at level 10 - but no one should play a caster before level 10. The more caster you have at low level, the harder the game is.

Or, you know, change up tactics. Everything I’ve heard of Plaguestone measures it as extremely difficult. How the party handles combat is far more important in this game than any other I’ve played. Does the bard just cast inspire courage and nothing else? Does the cleric just run into combat without casting any spells? Does the Druid try any spells before shape shifting? If all the casters (aside from the bard) are only fighting like fighters, then they may want to change, but if they want to do caster things, they should use their spells. Maybe instead of changing form and running into combat, or changing form as soon as an enemy gets in melee, the Druid could cast goblin pox or fear. If the cleric runs into melee, is he casting bane or magic weapon? Is the bard using telekinetic projectile, grim tendrils, phantom pain (I love this spell), soothe (great healing when everyone else is martial) or ray of enfeeblement? Having an all-fighter party is not bad in and of itself, but that does not make having casters in that party instead any worse.


I can confirm that Plaguestone is hard with martial majority as well. I've been having to rebalance it.


The bard typically maintains Inspire Courage and casts Daze from range. Druid is (IMO) conceptually confused and not optimized. I keep hearing the player says he is going the Wildshape route, but then I hear him say "I'm primarily a Wisdom based build". I would think a melee druid would be STR based, but I don't like to tell other players how to build their PCs or ask to look at character sheets. He also has a familiar and an animal companion, which I think is going to cripple his action economy.

Champion is using a shield and flick mace to say within 15 ft of mobs/PCs for his reaction. We have a dual wield rogue that sometimes joins us. I am playing a 2-handed greatsword Cleric of Gorum. With it just being myself and the rogue right next to the mobs we get boned if we can't get in and get out. Not enough PC targets to spread out the damage. Since I am the primary healer (healing font and battle medicine) I get stuck trying to get people back up when I could be casting magic weapon and/or true strike and trying to go for a big hit.

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Hamanu_of_Urik wrote:

The bard typically maintains Inspire Courage and casts Daze from range. Druid is (IMO) conceptually confused and not optimized. I keep hearing the player says he is going the Wildshape route, but then I hear him say "I'm primarily a Wisdom based build". I would think a melee druid would be STR based, but I don't like to tell other players how to build their PCs or ask to look at character sheets. He also has a familiar and an animal companion, which I think is going to cripple his action economy.

Champion is using a shield and flick mace to say within 15 ft of mobs/PCs for his reaction. We have a dual wield rogue that sometimes joins us. I am playing a 2-handed greatsword Cleric of Gorum. With it just being myself and the rogue right next to the mobs we get boned if we can't get in and get out. Not enough PC targets to spread out the damage. Since I am the primary healer (healing font and battle medicine) I get stuck trying to get people back up when I could be casting magic weapon and/or true strike and trying to go for a big hit.

I think daze is a terrible choice unless it is all but guaranteed to get a critical. Using spells and other attack cantrips may be of better use. The bard casting soothe should also help out a lot. The Druid also seems like he is trying to do too many things: controlling companions is an action each. That doesn’t leave many actions to use spells, but I don’t think strength is necessary if the Druid’s changing shapes since he should be using the creature’s stats. The champions seems to be doing fine, but since he’s using a reach weapon, that makes it difficult for the rogue to get sneak attack without your support. The rogue should probably try to attack and move, which doesn’t help much with dual wielding, but nimble dodge could be another option. For you, I would honestly just play as you like. You shouldn’t have to play healstick if you don’t want to. Just tell the other players that your not just going to focus on healing instead of the build you went for. Also, if all the melee characters aren’t working toward getting adequate AC, you all will probably go down pretty often.


Maelorn7 wrote:
Also the wizard already understood that his single target dmg will never ever get close to fighter and it is ok. The fighter will never be able to throw a nasty 6d6 fireball against 7 enemies at once, dealing ~140 dmg to them.

8 level-4 creature constitute a moderate encounter. 12 level-4 or 8 level-3 creature constitute a severe encounter - ie an encounter you're not supposed to do every day.

So:
- either this was an easy encounter with a lot of creature worth 0 xp, and you litterally accomplished nothing (there's a reason why level-5 creature are worth 0 xp).
- either it was a real encounter and the DM literally packed every enemy in a fireball area so you can insta-kill them with your wizard while the martials were elsewere.

So yeah... With some DM fiat, wizards are awesome... And they are awesome at accomplishing nothing...

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Gaterie wrote:
Maelorn7 wrote:
Also the wizard already understood that his single target dmg will never ever get close to fighter and it is ok. The fighter will never be able to throw a nasty 6d6 fireball against 7 enemies at once, dealing ~140 dmg to them.

8 level-4 creature constitute a moderate encounter. 12 level-4 or 8 level-3 creature constitute a severe encounter - ie an encounter you're not supposed to do every day.

So:
- either this was an easy encounter with a lot of creature worth 0 xp, and you litterally accomplished nothing (there's a reason why level-5 creature are worth 0 xp).
- either it was a real encounter and the DM literally packed every enemy in a fireball area so you can insta-kill them with your wizard while the martials were elsewere.

So yeah... With some DM fiat, wizards are awesome... And they are awesome at accomplishing nothing...

Or in the proper circumstances, circumstances that would not be too unrealistic or hard to achieve, there were multiple enemies in an area where fireball was the most appropriate spell. There have been multiple times where our sorcerer was able to get multiple creatures (not 7 because I don’t think we’ve faced 7 enemies at once with this party). And that was not due to GM fiat; that was from players agreeing that taking out or weakening enemies was in our best interests, moving and positioning, random placement of enemies, and initiative. Now, we don’t all just make sure the sorcerer can do his thing, there have been multiple times where he has stepped into flanking to allow me to sneak attack, saving me a few rounds of damage as well (I have the lowest health in the party based on builds). My party plays as a team, and we employ tactics (sometimes erroneously because I’m playing the overconfident firebrand), but we succeed more than fail because we adapt, consider our options, and execute what we can.


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Narxiso wrote:
Gaterie wrote:
Hamanu_of_Urik wrote:
The current party is composed of a bard (stays out of combat to buff), melee champion of Cayden Cailen, melee cleric of Gorum (specced into Medicine for Battle Medicine in-combat healing and out of combat treatment), and a Wildshape Druid. The current party level is 2 and we are playing The Fall of Plaguestone module.

3 casters and 1 martial, of course you're having hard time!

Try with this party composition: champion, fighter/bard, fighter/cleric, fighter/druid.

Note: when people want to show casters are balanced with martial, they cite level 4+ spells (and usually level 6+ uncommon spells). you can allow the PC to reroll as casters at level 10 - but no one should play a caster before level 10. The more caster you have at low level, the harder the game is.

Or, you know, change up tactics. Everything I’ve heard of Plaguestone measures it as extremely difficult. How the party handles combat is far more important in this game than any other I’ve played...

The final party that survived plaguestone was a gnome scoundrel, half elf alchemist, human flurry ranger, and a cloth cleric. Not a single hold the line martial, those died early in the adventure - especially the level two opener and closer which is designed to take persistent advantage of those who thinks 'I hit it again and again with my longsword' is the right thing to do.

The only problem the party really had was until the errata came on bulk they had to keep dropping their loot because nobody had STR.


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Running my party through Plaguestone right now. Just finished Part 2. I can say that the group had a much better go at it this week vs. last b/c they changed their tactics. Group is 2 wizards a Redeemer and a monk. Very limited healing.

P1 you walk up to a monster and just trade full attack actions until one of you is dead. In P2, you effectively run in circles around the room trading one strike each. Once they really internalized the "DON'T STAND STILL" concept the fights got much easier.


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Hamanu_of_Urik wrote:

The bard typically maintains Inspire Courage and casts Daze from range. Druid is (IMO) conceptually confused and not optimized. I keep hearing the player says he is going the Wildshape route, but then I hear him say "I'm primarily a Wisdom based build". I would think a melee druid would be STR based, but I don't like to tell other players how to build their PCs or ask to look at character sheets. He also has a familiar and an animal companion, which I think is going to cripple his action economy.

Champion is using a shield and flick mace to say within 15 ft of mobs/PCs for his reaction. We have a dual wield rogue that sometimes joins us. I am playing a 2-handed greatsword Cleric of Gorum. With it just being myself and the rogue right next to the mobs we get boned if we can't get in and get out. Not enough PC targets to spread out the damage. Since I am the primary healer (healing font and battle medicine) I get stuck trying to get people back up when I could be casting magic weapon and/or true strike and trying to go for a big hit.

See my above post, just finished with the surviving adventures not being STR PCs.

Druid is great for spamming tanglefoot as that will prevent melee from mobbing when half the NPC cannot move fast. companions are great for setting up flanks and net give you an action once in place. For melee druid Shillelagh staff does hurt if a hit gets thru, but Wild Claws was just errata that it can apply to self, it can also stack with Magic fang.

Why can't the melee get out melee - I cannot even remember anything having attack of opportunity in this adventure. a DEX rogue can use acrobatics to tumble thru or use CHA to create a diversion so they can sneak out.

You have most of the party that can help out with healing, champion with lay on hands and druid with natural medicine on top of the cleric. They need to be responsible for making sure they are topped off at focus breaks, and the emergency heals to prevent someone going down. If someone goes down, leave them the action economy is really bad for getting back up and being wounded is too dangerous. Only the rogue should be asking for heals, but leave them if it is their fault for sticking in melee. If you are not the cloth cleric they need to let you melee.

The champion and battle cleric should get trapped in melee as that is their deal, the trick is using skills to deprive the NPC of their attack economy even at the cost of PC attack economy. Trading triple hits is a disaster because mobs are more accurate and hit harder, especially this adventure which is too severe. 4x4's are unlikely (even in the orc yards) which means the PC actions are always more than NPC actions, so it hurts NPC more to lose an attack. What are they doing to replace their third attack to cost the enemy a third attack? I think the only class that should ever go all out is flurry ranger as they are all about the focus fire.


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Another thought that occurs to me as I have seen this on reddit.

Did everyone get the free bonuses? Some people have missed that in addition to ancestry, background and class fixed bonuses that you also get four free on top of the free ones that ancestry and background give.

This is covered in Step 6 of character creation in the Introduction chapter. If they instead just read the ancestry, background and class sections because they have RPG experience making characters and did not need the intro...they would have missed it.


krazmuze wrote:

See my above post, just finished with the surviving adventures not being STR PCs.

Druid is great for spamming tanglefoot as that will prevent melee from mobbing when half the NPC cannot move fast. companions are great for setting up flanks and net give you an action once in place. For melee druid Shillelagh staff does hurt if a hit gets thru, but Wild Claws was just errata that it can apply to self, it can also stack with Magic fang.

Why can't the melee get out melee - I cannot even remember anything having attack of opportunity in this adventure. a DEX rogue can use acrobatics to tumble thru or use CHA to create a diversion so they can sneak out.

You have most of the party that can help out with healing, champion with lay on hands and druid with natural medicine on top of the cleric. They need to be responsible for making sure they are topped off at focus breaks, and the emergency heals to prevent someone going down....

I play the battle cleric of Gorum. I have an AC 18 (level 2 + trained + chain shirt + 2 DEX) and 30 HPs (human + lvl 2 Cleric + 2 Con + toughness) and keep getting dropped in a round from 2 attacks (Maybe the DM's dice are just hot the last few sessions). I try to buff up with Magic Weapon, move in, and swing. I save True Strike for tough combat since it is verbal and like to stack it when Magic Weapon is still going. Will use my 3rd action to either move back or cast shield if it is not on cooldown.

I am second-guessing if I should have picked a diety with a 1-handed weapon to go sword and board route. It seems if I get hit by 2 attacks, I can go from 30 HP to down. DM seems to crit a lot on AC 18 for advanced fights. The rogue wants to flank with me but has focused into thievery and has not taken the dodge reaction yet.

Regarding your next post we did get the bonus stats at creation. I tried to go for a rounded ability score spread STR/Dex/Con/Cha 14, Wis 12, Int 10.

I will agree some of our party may be locked into the 1E mindset of just face tanking/self-buffing and not moving. My last character was a 1E inquisitor that just smoked mobs in combat once buffed up.


Hamanu_of_Urik wrote:


Regarding your next post we did get the bonus stats at creation. I tried to go for a rounded ability score spread STR/Dex/Con/Cha 14, Wis 12, Int 10.

Oof! Those stats are rough. In this thread we've talked about every little +1 or -1 being helpful, so you're at a disadvantage with an even spread here. I made a quick mock-up using voluntary flaws and got Str 18/Dex 12/Con 16/Int 8/Wis 10/Cha 12.

This way you have access to two "triage heals," and you're hitting the Dex cap for Breastplate. You also end up with +4 to attacks, which (I'm assuming) is what you really want to be doing. A low Wisdom doesn't hurt the warpriest since your spells are more likely going to be buffs. You aren't getting bonus spells via high Wisdom any longer.

But really it seems to come down to your party. You should have an out of combat healer (it could be the champion with lay on hands or the bard/rogue with Medicine) and your heals are just the mid-combat ones. You built a melee and battle focused cleric, your party should help you enable that!

Using a turn to cast bless before wading in is quite helpful, as is spending your third action for a guidance on someone. Forbidding ward is also helpful against more difficult "boss" encounters. Don't forget to sustain it, though. And finally, you can always just trip or grapple opponents (especially if you have a high Str now), and your rogue will love you.


I don't think he's a Cloistered Cleric (wearing armor), if he's Warpriest he really should wear Medium armor with that DEX, he's giving up 1 AC by wearing Light Chain Shirt. I thought he was doing that because he didn't meet STR rating to avoid penalties (which can actually be tolerable especially with Chain), but 14 STR is fine for Hide and Scale Mail, so no reason why not. He really should have 16 STR anyways which he can do by having less DEX which isn't actually helping his AC given the alternative armors. If the trade-off is 16 STR for attacks vs 14 STR with higher DEX but same net AC, I'd probably go 16 STR (even if you keep raising DEX later for ranged/Reflex/Acrobatics/Stealth).

A 1H weapon to use with Shield is legitimate to consider... And even Gorum Warpriests can use 1H weapons too: they get Martial at 3rd so they aren't limited to just Favored Weapon (Martial doesn't scale to Expert at later levels, although I think that's Errata fodder, but certainly consider using it at low levels). Depending on Ancestry (?) you could even get weapon proficiency earlier (General/Ancestral) and retrain it to something else useful when you get Martial Weapons at 3rd level. If you are using Shield, consider it's value as a weapon: mediocre damage even with Spikes/Boss but it lets you cover extra damage type, so good to use VS appropriate enemies.

Regardless, even if wielding a Greatsword or other 2H weapon, remember Shield spell. Or even consider wearing a Buckler, if you don't have Shield cantrip or even if you do (for when Shield gets destroyed for 10 minutes). Like Shield spell, Buckler is less AC than normal Shield (1 vs 2) but it's just Light bulk, so it gives you an OPTION to regrip weapon to free up hand (Free Action) and Raise Shield when you could use some AC help, even if it needs extra action to regrip 2H weapon to attack with it. Might as well work everything you got. Light bulk is cheap price for another option.

WIS/CHA govern Saves and Font respectively, you can focus on either one but with Warpriest DCs will always lag. Still can be viable with AoEs targetting multiple enemies, and spells with decent effect on Success vs Save. Those spells might have minor value if you ignore WIS to focus on CHA, but CHA is more about Font heals and not offensive attack/save spells (although indirect stuff like Summons work just as well without high WIS). If you are warpriest focusing on STR/CON, you really have choice of boosting DEX and one of WIS/CHA... OR neglecting DEX to boost BOTH WIS/CHA (probably WIS>CHA to have best possible DC for Warpriest). I'd probably say neglecting WIS is an easier route to Warpriest, and boosting DEX has multiple benefits... Although once you hit 18s in other stats like CON/DEX/CHA (when further boosts become less efficient) you might want to boost WIS for Will Saves/Perception/Skills.


Hamanu_of_Urik wrote:


I play the battle cleric of Gorum. I have an AC 18 (level 2 + trained + chain shirt + 2 DEX) and 30 HPs (human + lvl 2 Cleric + 2 Con + toughness) and keep getting dropped in a round from 2 attacks (Maybe the DM's dice are just hot the last few sessions).

In my Plaguestone, I have a Redeemer of Shelyn, which means she is using a glaive, so no shield either. She's in the same boat as your Cleric, AC 18 and HP 30. An average level 3 monster (harder encounter) has a +11 to hit, meaning they are going to hit on a 7 or less, and crit on a 17. It's going to do about d10+5 damage (with obvious wide range). This averages 10 per hit.

Yeah, that first attack is going to hit you. Not much to be done, but biggest thing is not stand next to the monster. A Melee round should be , Strike>Strike>Stride (or step). Yes you are only getting one hit in each round but it will help to keep the monster from getting three attacks on you too.


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So not really a battle cleric, as you are not using the classes medium armor and physical shield, and you lack strength for hitting hard.

For a stand and deliver melee going from +4 to +3 STR is fine if it gets survivable utility elsewhere, below that, you are essentially putting the NPC weak template on your attacks and it inverts your survivability.
STR.PNG

Get your party in on the backup healing so can swap a CHA for STR bonus, otherwise go put on the cloth and go all in to the healbot role.

I think you should look at physical vs. spell shield each level which is better, as that involves tradeoff with your deity weapon.

Seems like you are buffing yourself, but you got to nerf the NPC to get them knocked down to your level - forcing them to lose ATK or AC.


Gaterie wrote:
Maelorn7 wrote:
Also the wizard already understood that his single target dmg will never ever get close to fighter and it is ok. The fighter will never be able to throw a nasty 6d6 fireball against 7 enemies at once, dealing ~140 dmg to them.

8 level-4 creature constitute a moderate encounter. 12 level-4 or 8 level-3 creature constitute a severe encounter - ie an encounter you're not supposed to do every day.

So:
- either this was an easy encounter with a lot of creature worth 0 xp, and you litterally accomplished nothing (there's a reason why level-5 creature are worth 0 xp).
- either it was a real encounter and the DM literally packed every enemy in a fireball area so you can insta-kill them with your wizard while the martials were elsewere.

So yeah... With some DM fiat, wizards are awesome... And they are awesome at accomplishing nothing...

I have a party of 6 players. There is a part in AoA where after you successfully destroy an artifact, the BBEG sends a patrol after heroes. It happens at lvl 6 and my heroes have one NPC of lvl 4. So it is the party of 7 against the enemies.

The patrol consists of 5 creatures normally - one lvl 6 Caster (HP 95) and 4 lvl 3 warriors (HP 44-48). So no fireball one-shots. It is a moderate encounter against 4 players. I have added 2 more lvl 3 warriors and a big hitter of lvl 6, so against our party it became moderate encounter again, but now against 8 enemies.

My party managed to stop them at the beginning (with Champion tank + Warrior being very tough) and then our Wizard just smashed them with his fireball which damaged all of them but killed just a couple of wounded foes.
And even after that in that fight there was some tough moments.
And my Wizard shined with his AOE and color sprays and other shiny AOEs. Maybe for the Wizard and casters to shine you just need to.. emm... throw something else than single boss against the party? You know... Clerics feel great when they destroy hordes of undead. And it is hell of a fun.
So... What were you talking again?


Considering the actual knowledge about gishes in PF2, I would not annoy someone who plays a Warpriest explaining him how to build it. There's no validated Warpriest build right now.
Also, you can't put an 18 in Strength on a Warpriest at first level, their main attribute is Wisdom.


SuperBidi wrote:

Considering the actual knowledge about gishes in PF2, I would not annoy someone who plays a Warpriest explaining him how to build it. There's no validated Warpriest build right now.

Also, you can't put an 18 in Strength on a Warpriest at first level, their main attribute is Wisdom.

I mean, I don't ever mean to say that there is "one true build," but if someone is asking for advice, I feel like that's fair game. You're right about the 18, as I used Pathbuilder to mock-up the stats and it doesn't differentiate voluntary flaws (and the associated boost) and ancestry ability boosts.


Ruzza wrote:
I mean, I don't ever mean to say that there is "one true build," but if someone is asking for advice, I feel like that's fair game.

You kind of contradict yourself:

Ruzza wrote:
Oof! Those stats are rough.

What I mean is that, right now, not many people can be damn sure that a Strength based Warpriest is anywhere close to efficient. If you were already playing a Warpriest from level 1 to close to 10, you could speak about it. But I think you're theorycrafting with not much personal experience. So, it's ok, but don't start by saying that the stats are rough. Start by saying that you never played a Warpriest and that you would build it very differently :)

No offense, I hope.


Hey, I am trying my best to help.


Yes, clearly. I was not answering to you specifically in my first message. It was more a way to tell Hamanu that all advice on the Warpriest had to be taken with caution. Right now, on these forums, I've seen many people complaining about the efficiency of Strength based Warpriests. So, they may just not work (or not in a classical way).


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Actually my advice about +3 STR IF you want to focus on melee is solid, it is based on actual combat simulations that ignored DPR odds and focuses instead on players killed,

Now you could say 'but magic weapon spell' don't worry about STR you can buff that, except that is only good for the limited daily boss fights. Which all the encounters in Plaguestone are....

Also the advice was not unsolicited, the group specifically posted that PF2e is spanking their butts what can be done to fix it. So it is not your place to take people to task as annoyingly giving advice when then advice was asked for. The player expressed desire to hit things rather than heal things, people are responding with how to better play melee.

Personally if I was their GM I would allow them to adjust their stats for free until they find the PC plays how they want, a lot better than them rage quitting.


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One issue I see is what others here have brought up. The old tactics do not work like they used to. A few examples to think about (and these are my opinions...) and these are really simplified, but hope I get my point across...

PF, 5th, ect... The melee combat specialists would rush the enemy and get their full attack in ASAP (the rule of hit first and put them on defensive if able). The problem is the new action economy seems to punish that tactic most of the time. You used 1, possibly 2 actions to close, and maybe get one attack in. Meanwhile the mob retaliate can either try for 3 attacks, 2 action specials + attack, and so on. That can instantly turn the tide if they get 2 good hits sometimes vs your 1. Especially at lower levels.

AoO are rare now. No longer can the front line hold the enemy at bay by fear of guaranteed AoO and dictate where the combat line is. People are free to do drive by's now. This can prolong combat, something the blitzkrieg used to prevent (and made DPS better then healing that round most of the time), and giving PC and NPC breathing space to heal, potion, scroll, that they normally would avoid because of the AoO fears.

Personally I have found it more advantageous to close within 30 feet of melee mobs, toss my thrown weapon (and draw main and shield raise, depending on fighting style if needed). This allows me my one attack, and forces most NPC to use 2 actions to close to me to get one attack. Then my turn rolls around with fresh 3 actions (advantage to me since i get more actions directly to the mob instead of the mob getting 3 first), which can now be used to do things like trip, attack and move, or 3 full attacks first (which was kinda how the old systems worked, run up and get full attacks BEFORE the NPC did if able for advantage) This combo when it works, then forces the mob to waste an action getting up (forcing AoO from low level fighters and possibly mid-level others, makes the rogue get free sneak attack with melee or ranged without having to flank, and everyone else bonus to hit). The game seems to favor action denial tactics at low level (Have not played above 5th yet as we just started). Even if you only limit their actions once, it puts the advantage back in your hands, where as the go first charger from the first example is disadvantaged now (vs first to go usually had massive advantage) if he got hit hard, or some other action denial on round 1. Point being the mob is dictating your players pace, instead of vice versa, and controlling the battle (which is a new tactic moving away from the simple bash it tactics of old that worked due to OP optimization that created weird multiple synergies that were way above what the NPC could achieve unless the GM hyper specialized them too..) Now the NPC and PC are almost equals in HP, DMG, AC, Saves, and the like... Th player no longer has the built in 20% (just tossing a number out) advantage due to good optimization vs standard NPC.

That's my take anyways...


Maelorn7 wrote:

Playing AoA with my group of 6 players (but mostly 4 come to each session) and though the first book was pretty tough - once they have discovered all their options in fight it became much better.

The monsters somebody talked about - this +20 to hit vs 24-26 AC was our encounter 2 days ago - my party just rocked it with clever tactics and fighter's 44 dmg from his critical Power Attack (33+ to crit and he has +17 to hit).

We have 2 casters and no clerics among them - our wizard is a great helper in both encounters and in exploration. His Dispel Magic, Magic Missile, color spray, hypnotic patters, Acid Splash and paralyze are all great spells which actually saved the party for couple of times (paralyze owned the Bargheis, even though it is incapacitation effect).

Our druid with his Animal Companion is on par with our fighter - the bear slams everything and the druid throws elecric arcs and buffs/heals the party. If it was not for him the fighter would've died for 3 times already.

Maybe it is our character choices and our GM's luck. He tends to roll 10+ on all his rolls (open rolling). I, our party wizard, am the only one with intimidate, but his intimidate is trained with a +0 CHA. Grease has failed to influence any encounter other than making a few squares of random terrain difficult. We tend to roll abysmally, I have Wil Wheaton rolling ability. Our party's two animal companions tend to just go down in combat. The provide flank a couple of rounds and get smashed. Other than flanking, our party doesn't have a wide array of incurring penalties upon the mobs. What other things can we do?


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Just want yo say my groups fighter operates a lot like kainite describes. He spends most of his time fighting with gauntlet and shield because his opening move is to stand partway between the party and enemy and throw his trident at them. Now he will draw a better weapon if possible but is finding double slice + something defensive is better value than draw+ double. He has even mcd ranger because he finds the increased throw range to be that beneficial.


Kainite101 wrote:

One issue I see is what others here have brought up. The old tactics do not work like they used to. A few examples to think about (and these are my opinions...) and these are really simplified, but hope I get my point across...

PF, 5th, ect... The melee combat specialists would rush the enemy and get their full attack in ASAP (the rule of hit first and put them on defensive if able). The problem is the new action economy seems to punish that tactic most of the time. You used 1, possibly 2 actions to close, and maybe get one attack in. Meanwhile the mob retaliate can either try for 3 attacks, 2 action specials + attack, and so on. That can instantly turn the tide if they get 2 good hits sometimes vs your 1. Especially at lower levels.

No, it was terrible in pf1 as a meele char to rush to your enemy and eat a full attack.


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In my opinion, one thing people haven't tested much in PF2 are multi character combos. In PF1, it was roughly impossible. But in PF2, it can be absolutely atrocious. So, many people build their character so they can work alone. But if you build the groupe with member synergies, I think you can get to far higher efficiency.

The classical example is Demoralize. If you have, say, a Bard with full on Intimidation, he can Demoralize enemies like crazy. At first, it's not awesome, nice, but not awesome. But if your Rogue is a Dread Stricker, now you also give him Flat-Footed bonus. If your Fighter has Fearsome Brute, it's even better.

Another example is Synesthesia or Distracting Feint with a Trip Fighter and/or a blaster caster.

In my opinion, if you have a stable party (not PFS), you can make up such types of combos and use them as your bread and butter tactics. We have to stop thinking about our characters alone when building them, we need to think about character combos to get the best out of them.

Sovereign Court

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SuperBidi wrote:

In my opinion, one thing people haven't tested much in PF2 are multi character combos. In PF1, it was roughly impossible. But in PF2, it can be absolutely atrocious. So, many people build their character so they can work alone. But if you build the groupe with member synergies, I think you can get to far higher efficiency.

The classical example is Demoralize. If you have, say, a Bard with full on Intimidation, he can Demoralize enemies like crazy. At first, it's not awesome, nice, but not awesome. But if your Rogue is a Dread Stricker, now you also give him Flat-Footed bonus. If your Fighter has Fearsome Brute, it's even better.

Another example is Synesthesia or Distracting Feint with a Trip Fighter and/or a blaster caster.

In my opinion, if you have a stable party (not PFS), you can make up such types of combos and use them as your bread and butter tactics. We have to stop thinking about our characters alone when building them, we need to think about character combos to get the best out of them.

PF2 is definitely built with a "you need each other" philosophy.

* Getting a good coverage on all skills requires people with good mental attributes - all of them.
* In addition, getting good skill coverage with Expert/Master/Legendary skills requires people choosing different skills to push up in training as they get the opportunity. At level 3, a fighter/cleric/wizard/rogue party could have 5 Expert skills, you'd like all of them to be covering different bases.
* Many classes have feats to exploit a situation (Rogues with Dread Striker/Frightened enemies) that another class is much better at causing (Fighter with Intimidating Strike, Dragon style monk).
* Flat-footed is particularly easy to cause through teamwork, and causes a real hike in chances of causing critical hits.

This also has consequences for how you build characters. If you're building a party for a campaign together, it's really nice if you can divide the jobs and everyone makes sure to be good at their job. So a "balanced" stat array definitely has a 16 or 18 in it.


In fact, I'll even raise another question:
Is it better to Strike Strike or Trip Strike?

If you think only about yourself, clearly, you Strike Strike, as losing your first attack to perform a Trip would be a very bad idea for your own DPR.
But inside a party...

I think it would even ask for a specific subject, as I think it's a very valid and important question: When is it better to maximize your own efficiency and when it's better to set up kills for your allies?


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SuperBidi wrote:

In fact, I'll even raise another question:

Is it better to Strike Strike or Trip Strike?

If you think only about yourself, clearly, you Strike Strike, as losing your first attack to perform a Trip would be a very bad idea for your own DPR.
But inside a party...

I think it would even ask for a specific subject, as I think it's a very valid and important question: When is it better to maximize your own efficiency and when it's better to set up kills for your allies?

My newer group is learning this atm, some players more than others but everyone is seeing that as their tactics change/evolve the combats that were deadly and having most of the party at risk are now becoming quite reasonable.

Team work goes a heck of a long way, playing like 4-6 solo players who all just do their own thing regardless... Well that is how parties struggle.


Pathfinder Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Ice Titan wrote:
One thing I've noticed in all of the discussion about the difficulty of Pathfinder 2 is that a lot of parties that have a hard time don't have a cleric with healing font.

This. So much this. I really don't think it's that hard, but folks still think that Battle Medicine is going to carry the day for them. Want out of Hard Mode? Get a cleric with the healing font.


Tarondor wrote:
Ice Titan wrote:
One thing I've noticed in all of the discussion about the difficulty of Pathfinder 2 is that a lot of parties that have a hard time don't have a cleric with healing font.
This. So much this. I really don't think it's that hard, but folks still think that Battle Medicine is going to carry the day for them. Want out of Hard Mode? Get a cleric with the healing font.

Or in the case of my party of 3; make sure at least one of the players can use Treat Wounds; and potions wouldn’t hurt.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

3/4 of my players have invested somewhat in healing, but none are clerics and they seem to be doing alright. Well level 1 was a bit rough, but I think that was true in PF1 as well. They've got a Wizard with a Alchemist dedication (from Ancient Elf) providing a moderate 4d6 healing in a pinch, a Sorcerer with access to Soothe and a Rogue with Battle Medicine. They do have to pace themselves, but in general Treat Wounds is enough outside of combat and the other three options are fine in Combat.

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