Monks and Dex to Damage


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Also, I don't really see dex to damage fixing the "face monk" problem. There is no feat support for a face monk anyway. You might as well be rogue Thief, and MC into Monk so you can get the skill boosts and feats to be a face character, going with an 18 Dex, 16 CHA and then boosting Con to make up for the class HP loss.


Unicore wrote:

Also, I don't really see dex to damage fixing the "face monk" problem. There is no feat support for a face monk anyway. You might as well be rogue Thief, and MC into Monk so you can get the skill boosts and feats to be a face character, going with an 18 Dex, 16 CHA and then boosting Con to make up for the class HP loss.

Ahh see this is where my mechanic mind gives way for a want to role play.

I don't need feat support I just wanted to be a face monk because the image was appealing.

But given my stat constraints, I choose not to


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PossibleCabbage wrote:


Yes, your 12 strength tiger monk or scoundrel rogue will be worse at low levels than a higher strength character, but "delayed gratification on characters" is hardly a new thing in this family of games.

This is certainly true, but it's not a good thing…

Haven't to wait through low levels as a weakling for the reward of lots of power as a spellcaster is a huge flaw in the genre…

Each level should be balanced, just because it works well at 10+ isn't enough, levels 1-4 are very important.


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citricking wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:


Yes, your 12 strength tiger monk or scoundrel rogue will be worse at low levels than a higher strength character, but "delayed gratification on characters" is hardly a new thing in this family of games.

This is certainly true, but it's not a good thing…

Haven't to wait through low levels as a weakling for the reward of lots of power as a spellcaster is a huge flaw in the genre…

Each level should be balanced, just because it works well at 10+ isn't enough, levels 1-4 are very important.

For me, it's a big negative as I generally don't see the higher levels very often: when I only see 8-10th level most times, spending a significant amount of it sub optimal isn't super fun.


Martialmasters wrote:


But some people like role playing mechanical deficiencies, I suppose that's valid and should be supported

Sure, but that's not what we're talking about here.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I feel Martialmasters' point of view is valid, if not universal. We all have different ways to play and put importance on different things. And I am always in awe of this hobby of ours that has room for so many people.

Also I wanted to thank people on this thread for sharing calculations and well-considered arguments, as well as personal experience and system mastery. It opened my eyes even more to the nuances and subtleties of PF2.

Thank you all.


Squiggit wrote:
Martialmasters wrote:


But some people like role playing mechanical deficiencies, I suppose that's valid and should be supported
Sure, but that's not what we're talking about here.

Effectively from levels 1-4 especially. It is even if it's not what you intended.


The Raven Black wrote:

I feel Martialmasters' point of view is valid, if not universal. We all have different ways to play and put importance on different things. And I am always in awe of this hobby of ours that has room for so many people.

Also I wanted to thank people on this thread for sharing calculations and well-considered arguments, as well as personal experience and system mastery. It opened my eyes even more to the nuances and subtleties of PF2.

Thank you all.

I think if you are ok with such deficiencies and want to role play it and you group is ok with one of your damage oriented character's doing low damage out of the gate. It's fine.

And even then play how you want.

I can only State my groups expectations as well as my own out of character performance.

Good everyone was able to help.


Martialmasters wrote:
Unicore wrote:

Also, I don't really see dex to damage fixing the "face monk" problem. There is no feat support for a face monk anyway. You might as well be rogue Thief, and MC into Monk so you can get the skill boosts and feats to be a face character, going with an 18 Dex, 16 CHA and then boosting Con to make up for the class HP loss.

Ahh see this is where my mechanic mind gives way for a want to role play.

I don't need feat support I just wanted to be a face monk because the image was appealing.

But given my stat constraints, I choose not to

I guess I am really struggling to wee what a face monk is, because skills, like damage, are much more of a product of leveling up and wealth investment over time than just raw attributes.

A "face character probably needs a fair bit of skills, diplomacy, deception, society, with intimidate the most useful, but least conceptually "face" skill. Every character except the rogue is going to struggle to keep these skills proficiency boosted. Bards get a lot of magical and feat support to cover for lack of skill boosts. For everyone else, is the metric of "face character" just being able to afford a 16 in CHA?

I understand the math is tight, but the difference between a 14 and a 16 at level 1 in an attribute that is only in use for skill usage without feat support becomes incredibly negligible by level 5 (as items can come into the picture) and is totally gone by level 10.

What does this have to do with dex to damage? (I ask myself)

I think that there is a lot of mixed signaling going on on these boards about the importance of every +1, when thinking about being the absolute best at X thing over 20 levels, vs what the numbers look like at level 1, vs. what being secondarily focused in something should look like numerically as you level up. With level scaling, it takes a lot of math, with a lot of comparing values to start to paint a picture and it is easy to get lost in those posts that list all numbers at 1, 4, 5, 7, 11, 13, 15,17 and 20 where big shifts can start occurring.

In play, the level 1 face character with the 14 CHA and the 16 CHA will probably not see that much difference in the amount of times they succeed, fail or especially critically succeed on diplomacy checks, because most people don't make more than 5 or 10 of those checks at most before leveling up to level 2. By level 2, skill feat choices enter the picture and can really start to change fundamental things about how those characters work as a face character depending on their choices. (the rogue boosts a skill here so could even have a 12 charisma and be as good a face character as a 16 CHA anything else, by level 2).

The significance of attributes to skills in PF2 is less important than it might seem, because most skills roles require keeping more than one skill very high, and you will get ways to increase bonuses and do more interesting things with skills at a staggered pace in PF2.

As opposed to attacking, which is something that you will probably be doing a lot more of, which is why people place such a premium on attack bonus, and AC, then Saves, then Damage, then combat skills, then utility skills.

It makes a lot of sense to want to absolutely maximize the things that you will be using multiple times a combat round. For a lot of people that will be attack and damage, but there are other very useful builds for most characters, including martials, that are fine, depending on the party composition. If your party includes a healing cleric and a champion, it might be enough for you to have a lot of HP and not worry too much about have 1 or 2 less AC as a monk. If your party lacks magical healing, AC, mobility and ranged combat is going to be a lot better party design.

There are just so many factors at play, that it seems like a mistake to assume that every class has only a few possible optimal builds that are going to work equally well with every party. Even if that situation were true, Dex to damage does not alleviate that problem, it only changes which kinds of builds are optimal.


I see where you are coming from Unicore but I still can't seem to agree.

First hurdle is giving myself 16 charisma at level 1 as a monk. Outside of mountain style Wich still has to make sacrifices but I am willing to their. But without I'm beholden to 18 in either str or dexterity and 16 in the other. This is because as a Monk your first and foremost purpose is being a mobile damager. To willfully hurt your main purpose seems folly.

So no, I'm not weighing 16cha monk face because I cannot justify it unless I'm playing a non combat game. Rather it would be a 12 or if tanking 2 stats in order to get 14. Despite me seeming like a possible mechanically driven min/maxer I'm against going to such extreme measures for a +1, I'm not that much of a min maxer.

So comparing 12 Cha face monk to 18cha face sorcerer is what I have going. And that 3 modifier variance not vs the sorcerer but vs the social DC's of deception, intimidation and diplomacy means you are more of a liability at a job you had to sacrifice and invest more into than the sorcerer or Bard.

I'm actually ok with a +1/-1 variation in 2e. +2/-2 is very hard for me to stomach. Beyond that, just no, it's not even a conversation to really be had with me (in a general sense not in the sense we should cease our discussion)

Dex to damage means, boom. I have a 18dex/16cha level 1 monk and I can justify it. This is why my face monk is my mountain style. Because I can tank dexterity. It didn't break anything. The inverse can be true.


You could still have a STR16 DEX 18 and a CHA 14 relatively easily as a monk if you are willing to have a slightly lower will save, and still have more than 20 starting HP (as a goblin).

I think the reason that doesn't feel worth it is because there is really nothing the monk can do with the extra charisma that feels anywhere near as valuable as using those points towards CON or WIS. You are correctly identifying that boosting CHA for a monk just doesn't have enough to offer to make it a particularly interesting choice. At least not yet.

What DEX to damage does is makes it where your choices of what to boost have significantly less meaning, especially for the monk.


I don't see that. For me it's that difference between being -1 behind a 18cha player and -2. My idea if interesting is just different I guess


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Martialmasters wrote:

Claxon, I now know your idea of interesting is being unable to build the character you want. According to you interesting is making a face monk with 10-12 to charisma and wondering why you keep failing your DC checks to be a face. Or being a damage dealer at level 1 and doing poor damage because you rolled 1s and had no static modifier. Or being in melee with crappy ac.

These things don't read as interesting to me. They read as frustrating and restrictive.

So 2e, outside of mountain style, every single one is just 18str/16dex or 16str/18dex. 12 in con or wisdom. Every ASI those 4 stats will get bumped, and this will be the only way I play a monk because that is how they are built.

Personally I do not buy your definition of interesting

Where the f%$~ did you get that from? Please don't tell me that "My idea of fun is not having fun".

If you want to be a face you can, don't invest in wisdom and invest in Charisma. Outside of like 2 specific abilities, monks don't need wisdom for class related things. It's for saves and perception.

You can build the character you want, a face monk. But you can't have it all. You can be charismatic, and have AC, and have good svaes, but you will sacrifice damage. Or instead sacrifice AC and reflex saves. Or sacrifice hp and fort saves.

You have accept that you are REQUIRED to SACRIFICE something, you don't get to be good at everything.

You could even make a dex monk with low (12 strength) and invest in Dex, Con, Wis, and Charisma once you start to level up. Maybe your charisma isn't max, but you're probably going to be okay.


Martialmasters wrote:
I don't see that. For me it's that difference between being -1 behind a 18cha player and -2. My idea if interesting is just different I guess

An 18 CHA Bard, Sorcerer, or even Rogue has a lot more that they can be doing with that stat, every round of combat even, than a 16 CHA monk is going to be able to do, primarily because of class abilities and access to skill feats, but also skill boosts.

Intimidate is a great and interesting combat skill, but it only really works once per enemy per combat and isn't such a deal breaking power for the monk that it makes that big a difference if the target number is +/-1, in comparison to other more essential things you want your monk to be able to do. I think most monk characters will choose an extra point of damage on every attack over an extra +1 to their intimidate checks.

If we make it where the monk can still get the damage without investing in STR, I think that the vast majority of players will just use that to have a 16 in Wis or Con, and a 14 in the other, and still only consider putting a 12 in CHA or INT, because they pretty much have to. Instead of choosing between damage and a skill trick, you will be evaluating saves and a skill trick.

If there were interesting monk abilities that applied serious debuffs in combat with CHA, and didn't also require STR (the problem with dragon Roar), then the choice between +2 damage and +2 to the roll that makes that debuff happen would be an interesting and worth while choice to make.


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The Raven Black wrote:
I feel Martialmasters' point of view is valid

Martialmasters preferring to play high strength characters is perfectly valid.

Pretending it's the only possible way to play the game and constantly belittling anyone who disagrees is more of an issue though.


Squiggit wrote:
The Raven Black wrote:
I feel Martialmasters' point of view is valid

Martialmasters preferring to play high strength characters is perfectly valid.

Pretending it's the only possible way to play the game and constantly belittling anyone who disagrees is more of an issue though.

If you feel I belittled anyone I'm sorry. I tried to phrase it so that it was apparent as to being my opinion. I messed up with claxon in trying to make a point that fell flat.

Grand Lodge

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I hated Dex to damage in PFS 1, to be honest, It made strength a nearly pointless stat for so many builds it became obnoxious.

You shouldn't get to have Better AC, Better Reflex saves, Better acrobatics/thievery/stealth AND still get to do as much damage as a person who invested in strength. (It was worse in PFS 1 when Dex also gave you the best initiative.)

Characters are just as defined by what they can't do as by what they can do.

If you don't want to pump both Strength and Dex and Con to get a social stat, you can pump Strength and con, go Mountain Stance and be slightly slower moving, less nimble brute with KO power and an iron chin.

Or you can dump con and live with your strong and nimble monk having a glass jaw.

Or you can pump Dex and Con, ignore strength and live with being a quick and tough-as-nails martial artist who lacks one-hitter-quitter power.

Or you pump all physical stats accept that your monk spent most of his life training to be in peak physical condition so he isn't well versed in other intellectual or social pursuits.

But somewhere along the way, you have to figure out what you're willing to live with your character being bad at.


Claxon wrote:
Martialmasters wrote:

Claxon, I now know your idea of interesting is being unable to build the character you want. According to you interesting is making a face monk with 10-12 to charisma and wondering why you keep failing your DC checks to be a face. Or being a damage dealer at level 1 and doing poor damage because you rolled 1s and had no static modifier. Or being in melee with crappy ac.

These things don't read as interesting to me. They read as frustrating and restrictive.

So 2e, outside of mountain style, every single one is just 18str/16dex or 16str/18dex. 12 in con or wisdom. Every ASI those 4 stats will get bumped, and this will be the only way I play a monk because that is how they are built.

Personally I do not buy your definition of interesting

Where the f&#& did you get that from? Please don't tell me that "My idea of fun is not having fun".

If you want to be a face you can, don't invest in wisdom and invest in Charisma. Outside of like 2 specific abilities, monks don't need wisdom for class related things. It's for saves and perception.

You can build the character you want, a face monk. But you can't have it all. You can be charismatic, and have AC, and have good svaes, but you will sacrifice damage. Or instead sacrifice AC and reflex saves. Or sacrifice hp and fort saves.

You have accept that you are REQUIRED to SACRIFICE something, you don't get to be good at everything.

You could even make a dex monk with low (12 strength) and invest in Dex, Con, Wis, and Charisma once you start to level up. Maybe your charisma isn't max, but you're probably going to be okay.

If that is how you feel that's fine, but I still disagree. In the end all it means is outside of taking Mountain style I won't ever be building a monk with a secondary stat and goal other than strength/dexterity because to be starting with under 18 in my to hit/damage/Athletics (as if I'm going to need to put points in str I'm not going to dump the only skill it grants) because i can never actually make it up later.

As for me telling you what your ideas are, sorry, phrased it poorly. Rather it was supposed to be how I interpreted your comments because in the end that's what it amounts to me.

As a non charisma based class, if my charisma isn't 16 at the start I don't have much interest in trying to be a face.

The fact you phrase your last bit as (probably be ok) just reinforces my feelings. As you yourself are not certain it will be fine. Looking at the math, you won't be fine, you will be subpar, why would I invest months if not years into such a form of self inflicted woe, as I see them.

Role play comes fairly easily to me. So it is the mechanics I build upon as I can routinely miss finer points to a system otherwise.

I see no game play value in a monk statted differently than the examples I have given.

If I want to play a monk. 18str/16dex/12con (unless I want ki blast or more DC based ki powers are introduced).

If I want to play a sorcerer?
18cha/16dex/12wis(for the small initiative boost)

Wizard? 18int/16dex/12wis

Cleric? 18wis/16dex/12con

Druid? 18wis/14dex/14con

But then the really crazy stuff.

Warpriest cleric? 16str/12dex/16cha dump wisdom

Wild order druid? 16str/14dex/14con

Despite their inherent martial deficiencies while trying to emulate one, I like these characters more because to make their mechanical shtick work you need to tank their main stat and pick spells accordingly. I think druid does this a bit better due to wild shape giving you +2 to hit.

This has little directly to deal with Monk's Dex to damage argument. Merely trying to show how my mind works. I see little value in making a

12str/18dex/16cha monk as I won't be a good damage dealer at start of the game, Wich is my purpose, and will always be behind the curve for both my main role in the party as well as my chosen secondary.

Appreciate everyone's viewpoints TBH, in a different game I may agree but in 2e I'll stay within the Little boxes created for me

I'll play a Bard to face next time. :)


Martialmasters wrote:
Looking at the math, you won't be fine, you will be subpar, why would I invest months if not years into such a form of self inflicted woe, as I see them.

Of course you're going to be subpar, you're trying to make a class be good at something it's not intended to be good at.

The ability score for your class DC tells you what you're expected to be good at.

A monk can never start with 18 charisma, so he will always be worse off than a charisma based class.

At low levels you will be 2 points behind if you start with an 14 charisma.

Quote:

FaceMonk

Half-elf monk 1
Common, LN, Medium, Elf, Human, Humanoid
Perception +3; darkvision, low-light vision
Languages Common, Elven
Skills Acrobatics +7, Athletics +5, Deception +5, Diplomacy +5, Intimidation +5, Warfare Lore +3
Str 14 (+2), Dex 18 (+4), Con 12 (+1), Int 10 (+0), Wis 10 (+0), Cha 14 (+2)
--------------------
AC 19; Fort +6; Ref +9; Will +5
HP 19 Hero Points 1
--------------------
Speed 25 feet
Melee [1] fist +7 (nonlethal, agile, finesse), Damage 1d6+2 bludgeoning
Feats Cat Fall, Elf Atavism, Tiger Stance
Other Abilities flurry of blows, martial disciple, powerful fist

Hero Lab and the Hero Lab logo are Registered Trademarks of LWD Technology, Inc. Free download at https://www.wolflair.com
Pathfinder and associated marks and logos are trademarks of Paizo Inc., and are used under license.

Personally, I think the above character is viable, even if they're not the best. Invest in Dex, Str, Con, and Charisma as you level up.

Your charisma based action wont be more than 10% worse chance of success. And, as you level up you actually reduce the gap, because you get 2 points of increase up to 18 in an attribute, so that person at 18 doesn't have their modifier increase while you will.

And the only reason I said "probably will be okay" is because I haven't played the character, so I can't authoritatively say "Yes it's fine" based solely on my armchair analysis.

If we went by my current play of the game, I would say I don't like PF2 in general because my characters aren't as strong as they were in PF1. I'm still re-calibrating my personal expectations. But if you compare the above character to someone starting with an 18 in charisma, you're not much worse and you close the gap pretty quickly.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I would argue some of the problem is that Dex is too strong a stat.

Hell if you read the alternate attributes in gamemastery guide you can combine con and str and still have an attribute weaker than Dexterity is right now.

For Cha to be balanced you need to move will saves from wisdom to charisma.

Anything that makes dexterity a stronger attribute needs to be carefully looked at as right now it affects AC, Reflex saves, ranged attacks and a ton of skills.

The real question is not whether dex to damage makes an impact at higher levels but does the lack of dex to damage at lower levels that bad?

If I can pump dex and get everything I need so that str is no longer really desireable does that improve choices or reduce it?

Really I would soon have a stance for monk that added wis to damage (instead of str) than add dex to damage. Dex to hit with high dex is more damage because you hit more.


Cyder wrote:
I would argue some of the problem is that Dex is too strong a stat.

I'd argue the opposite: Strength is too weak.

Dex and wisdom affect multiple skills and rolls + saves and attacks/spells. Int affects a number of skills and the number of skills and attacks/spells. Cha affects several skills and attacks/spells. Con affects hp and saves. Strength is a single skill, attacks and damage.

Every benefit pulls it's weight as you level except the bonus to damage: those bonuses to skills, save, AC, initiative, ect pretty much as as useful at 1st as 20th: damage bonuses become a smaller and smaller part of your total as you level.

Honestly, I think a way to make Str seem better would be it introduce a 'heavy' class of thrown weapon that uses Str to make ranged attacks [like what the PF1 Belt of Mighty Hurling let you do]: this would cover a weakness of heavy armor str builds, ranged attacks and allow for str switch hitting builds.


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The static bonus to damage from strength isn’t as important as the fact that using non-finesse weapons have better damage die/don’t waste a trait you aren’t using (finesse). If doing damage is important to your character concept, then STR is important. STR is balanced because it controls bonus to attack with the best damage weapons as well as the bonus to damage. That keeps it balanced at low levels when bonus to damage matters, and at higher levels where damage die matters more.


Strength has a bit more going for it than in previous editions, I think. I like where they're headed with heavy armor and the benefits of Strength for defense generally. Bulk is a bit more streamlined (though a matter of contention for some) so possibly more useful for groups that might ignore it otherwise. Its role in Athletics checks and those types of combat maneuvers is also much more straightforward.

I think another thing to benefit high Strength would be nice, something like Starfinder's heavy weapons. I'm hopeful that whatever adventurer's arsenal book that comes out might play with this, or even stuff in the APG. Generally agreed that Dex is fine, though, and that Strength is in a weird spot because of how vestigial Constitution feels; it seems like Strength and Constitution could be folded into one another and they'd be a pretty good mirror to Dexterity. I'm excited to get my copy of the GMG and take a look at the alternate rules there.

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