Monks and Dex to Damage


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I really wish Pathfinder had taken a page out of D&D 5e's book when it came to strength and dexterity damage. I have a player who wants to make a monk but is really bummed out that they don't have dexterity to their damage. She wants to play a human reflavored as a nekomata/catfolk and the Tiger Stance makes her theme super easy to pull off... she just doesn't want to have to be a beef cake to do it.


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14/16 STR monk seems less like beefcake and more like toned, athletic muscle to me.


Henro wrote:
14/16 STR monk seems less like beefcake and more like toned, athletic muscle to me.

And then she never puts another point into strength...? Whatever the primary stat it will always eventually be 20 or greater.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

I'm glad they've been restrictive with letting stats go outside of their purview. I made a 5e character who basically got to use one stat for everything. Hated it. Had to make 0 important character choices.

For monk if they had dex to damage then there would be no choice about stats at all. Without damage str does bulk and monks care very little about bulk as they ignore the to biggest capacity sponges of weapon and armour. Having little str is okay for the monk. She can hit with dex, and so is only losing out on a little damage. As she advances and gets handwraps the strength % portion of damage will go down. In the mean time she will have excellent AC and reflex.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Filthy Lucre wrote:
Henro wrote:
14/16 STR monk seems less like beefcake and more like toned, athletic muscle to me.
And then she never puts another point into strength...? Whatever the primary stat it will always eventually be 20 or greater.

Yeah why not? She can invest in Dex, Con, Wis and then either Int or Cha.


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Malk_Content wrote:

I'm glad they've been restrictive with letting stats go outside of their purview. I made a 5e character who basically got to use one stat for everything. Hated it. Had to make 0 important character choices.

For monk if they had dex to damage then there would be no choice about stats at all. Without damage str does bulk and monks care very little about bulk as they ignore the to biggest capacity sponges of weapon and armour. Having little str is okay for the monk. She can hit with dex, and so is only losing out on a little damage. As she advances and gets handwraps the strength % portion of damage will go down. In the mean time she will have excellent AC and reflex.

As the DM I'm just going to give all agile and finesse weapons dex to damage and call it a day.

And as to "Yeah why not? She can invest in Dex, Con, Wis and then either Int or Cha."

We min-max in my house, sir. No one is dumping their damage stat.


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Listen to Malk. A couple points less damage isn't a non-viable character and it becomes even less an issue as levels go up.

And regarding ability bonuses: Eh. Look at Amiri. She is muscled but certainly not a body building championship physique. It is a heroic fantasy game. The abilities are just abstractions. Just say: you are strong/toned but not omega-bulked.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

So you min max but if there is a hard choice to that then I guess you just hand waive it away. Never seen hard and soft attitudes to mechanics so plainly clash but you do you. If you want your player to get everything they want with 0 drawbacks and make any rogues feel like they've lost a class feature, go ahead.


Saedar wrote:
Listen to Malk. A couple points less damage isn't a non-viable character and it becomes even less an issue as levels go up.

It's not an issue of viability so much as maximizing the amount of punching damage she can distribute.


Malk_Content wrote:
So you min max but if there is a hard choice to that then I guess you just hand waive it away. Never seen hard and soft attitudes to mechanics so plainly clash but you do you. If you want your player to get everything they want with 0 drawbacks and make any rogues feel like they've lost a class feature, go ahead.

If there was a way to get dexterity to damage through archetype feats I wouldn't need to do any hand waiving.


Okie doke. Seems like you're decided. Hope your player enjoys!


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You increase stats four at a time, so "not having 18 strength eventually" is a deliberate choice.

But the difference between "max dex to damage" and "18 strength" is only like 3 damage per hit, which isn't really worth investing a lot of resources into.

I, for one, am glad that dex-to-damage is incredibly rare in PF2 so as to avoid the glut of Str 10 Dex ∞ DPR monsters, a thing I was not fond of in PF1.


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Filthy Lucre wrote:
It's not an issue of viability so much as maximizing the amount of punching damage she can distribute.

Have you considered that's an intentional trade off built into the system? Strength as a stat has a much narrower pool of features that it offers compared to Dexterity, with its consideration regarding damage really being the start and finish of its advantages.

Moreover, the expected damage of Dex based monks is already designed around that expectation too.

5e's system of basically giving everyone a designated primary stat that's the only thing they really care about definitely has some advantages, but 5e is a system built with that as a core assumption of the game (and it ends up suffering in some respects as a result by making MAD builds or builds that want to emphasize secondary/tertiary stats feel kinda bad).

I mean obviously do what you want in your game, but it'd feel really bad to play a dragon monk or something similar at that table.


PossibleCabbage wrote:

You increase stats four at a time, so "not having 18 strength eventually" is a deliberate choice.

But the difference between "max dex to damage" and "18 strength" is only like 3 damage per hit, which isn't really worth investing a lot of resources into.

I, for one, am glad that dex-to-damage is incredibly rare in PF2 so as to avoid the glut of Str 10 Dex ∞ DPR monsters, a thing I was not fond of in PF1.

I think what I'm going to do, so that I don't have to inject my game with any loathsome house rules, is direct her toward rogue instead. The shtick she wants to accomplish is using unarmed/claw attacks that are dex to hit and dex to damage. That can be done with using the monk archetype feats.

THEN I'd just need them to release an official catfolk ancestry.


PossibleCabbage wrote:

You increase stats four at a time, so "not having 18 strength eventually" is a deliberate choice.

But the difference between "max dex to damage" and "18 strength" is only like 3 damage per hit, which isn't really worth investing a lot of resources into.

I, for one, am glad that dex-to-damage is incredibly rare in PF2 so as to avoid the glut of Str 10 Dex ∞ DPR monsters, a thing I was not fond of in PF1.

This works the other way too though: if the "difference between "max dex to damage" and "18 strength" is only like 3 damage per hit, which isn't really worth investing a lot of resources into" then it doesn't seem like it should be a big deal if dex to damage was easier to get. With damage dice having a much greater impact on overall damage and finesse/agile weapons already having lower dice, it doesn't seem an issue to me.

As to "avoid the glut of Str 10 Dex ∞ DPR monsters", str is more important in the long run in skill check than damage: Swim, jump, climb and the like need +3 to the rolls more than +3 damage to 4d8+1d6 damage. Add to it that you get so many increases as you level, I don't see how you could get a "glut" even if dex to damage was a 1st level general feat.


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Consider that not every human, much less every reflavoured nekomata-catfolk, carries their muscle the same way. In particular, women often gain very little muscle mass despite being at pique fitness. I can only imagine a catfolk would only too easily hide their muscle under their fur no different than a lioness or tiger--though I gather your nekomata may not have significant fur to speak of.

Here is a good resource

Pay particular attention to the swimmers who require significant strength in their sport. While you're at it, look up Samantha Wright 2011. On the other hand mind that body building is not especially relevant as the goal of gaining muscle mass is not the same thing as gaining physical strength, and one does not necessarily lead directly to the other in either case.

---

Personally I am very glad that PF2 doesn't fall into the same problem as 5e where Dex is far and away the most useful stat for most builds. Balance reasons aside, with rare exception I believe that most if not all athletic, acrobatic, or generally gymnastic characters should have a high strength score because physical strength is indeed an necessity in these sports.

On top of all that, keep in mind that the difference between 16 Str and 20 Str is about 2 points of damage per attack, which never increases even as your specialization bonus (+2 to +3) or your weapon damage dice (1dX to 4dX) increases. Even if you don't accept that you can have 18-20 strength without rippling mounds of muscles, you will survive. Ultimately if you don't want to have a Str of 20, you are losing a minuscule amount of damage that you could gain back with any weapon property rune.


Sibelius Eos Owm wrote:
...pique...

You mean "peak" as in, the top of/zenith. Pique means "to affect".


Hah, indeed! Pique more accurately describes some of the responses in this thread than an athlete's physique.

... Come to think of it, 'physique' is probably why I was reaching for the 'ique' keys in the first place.


I wouldn't do it. Unless you're a barbarian or want to grapple, there's next to zero reason to go for a strength based martial build in 5e unless you just want to. Dex is by far the best stat in that came because of it.


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Filthy Lucre wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:

You increase stats four at a time, so "not having 18 strength eventually" is a deliberate choice.

But the difference between "max dex to damage" and "18 strength" is only like 3 damage per hit, which isn't really worth investing a lot of resources into.

I, for one, am glad that dex-to-damage is incredibly rare in PF2 so as to avoid the glut of Str 10 Dex ∞ DPR monsters, a thing I was not fond of in PF1.

I think what I'm going to do, so that I don't have to inject my game with any loathsome house rules, is direct her toward rogue instead. The shtick she wants to accomplish is using unarmed/claw attacks that are dex to hit and dex to damage. That can be done with using the monk archetype feats.

THEN I'd just need them to release an official catfolk ancestry.

Thieves don't get Dex to Damage with Unarmed Attacks. Only with Weapons.

CRB, p. 180 wrote:
When you attack with a finesse melee weapon, you can add your Dexterity modifier to damage rolls instead of your Strength modifier.
CRB, p. 278 wrote:
However, unarmed attacks aren’t weapons, and effects and abilities that work with weapons never work with unarmed attacks unless they specifically say so.


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In my opinion there isn't much reason to allow dex to damage, as the difference between having an second stat that controls you damage, even at 16, will only lag behind by a maximum of 3 points of damage.

But becoming "monostat" is far more beneficial than than damage, just because strength largely does nothing for you if you're not using it for damage. Most of the other things it does can be ignored by most player characters.

Of course, letting you have dex to damage conversely wont do too much except let you tank strength to 10 and never raise it. But since you get so many stat increases anyways, it's rather trivial.

Instead of having str, dex, con, and wis on Monk you could have dex, con, wis, and int or cha. Honestly, int does very little for you in PF2 as does Charisma. Basically unless Cha/Int stat has skills you want to focus in underneath they don't matter very much, just like strength doesn't matter much if you've got a method of using dex to attack/damage.

All the same, as a GM unless I find a compelling reason I avoid changing the rules.

And in this case I don't find the player's desire to be compelling.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

If you are going the rogue route it would be fairly simple to create a neko heritage that gave claw attacks and youd be done.


From my experience up to now

I was always a fan from dex to dmg in pf1, made building characters very easy, but on the other hand the few points of dmg were a lot more important

I am the GM in the party and (at least for the start) decided to stick with the mechanics as used

Well, making a dex based paladin with barely any strength at all using the starknife was not much fun tbh

I rebuild the character a bit later, going a bit more classical, the build is now more rounded with an emphasis a bit more on strength (opposed to the main host of the party)
But right now I feel like the starknife would've worked better for me with the increased str, I could probably switch str and dex (16/14 now) and be happy again

other classes have their ways dealing with it
rogue has dex to dmg (with one of his rackets - which is by the way halfway useless to your houseruling)
the swashbuckler has his precision damage (which is pretty dope up to now) and the fighter has a severe lack for mental skills :P

And 5e aside (I don't like it tbh) the decision to omit most dex to dmg options was a good decision - makes character builds more interesting and negates min-maxing

I never EVER build a str based character in pf1 because dex to dmg made the choice too easy

also monk stance dmg dice are pretty neat with d8
also you get weapon specialisation later

so...well, maybe just try for a little, leave some wriggle room for the players

tl:dr

In the end it's of course your game but I would advise you to at least try without just giving dex to damage


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

From CRB Page 278:

"Almost all characters start out trained in unarmed attacks. You can Strike with your fist or another body part, calculating your attack and damage rolls in the same way you would with a weapon. Unarmed attacks can belong to a weapon group (page 280), and they might have weapon traits (page 282). However, unarmed attacks aren’t weapons, and effects and abilities that work with weapons never work with unarmed attacks unless they specifically say so.

Table 6–6: Unarmed Attacks lists the statistics for an unarmed attack with a fist, though you’ll usually use the same statistics for attacks made with any other parts of your body. Certain ancestry feats, class features, and spells give access to special, more powerful unarmed attacks. Details for those unarmed attacks are provided in the abilities that grant them."

Edit: Apparently the post I was replyingvto, which asked how unarmed attacks are not wespons, no longer exists.


Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
How is an unarmed strike not a weapon?

The PF2 developers, for whatever reason, thought it would be a good idea to put this in the book:

CRB p.278 wrote:
However, unarmed attacks aren’t weapons, and effects and abilities that work with weapons never work with unarmed attacks unless they specifically say so.

However:

Quote:
I selected the Brawling weapon group for my 5th level Weapon Mastery choice, are you telling me I wouldn't get Master proficiency if I decide to punch someone in the face, when it has identical wording to the ability above?

Per the errata on how proficiency for unarmed works, you'd get Master in unarmed with Brawling weapon group... in fact you'd get master with unarmed no matter what weapon group you picked.


Gisher wrote:
Filthy Lucre wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:

You increase stats four at a time, so "not having 18 strength eventually" is a deliberate choice.

But the difference between "max dex to damage" and "18 strength" is only like 3 damage per hit, which isn't really worth investing a lot of resources into.

I, for one, am glad that dex-to-damage is incredibly rare in PF2 so as to avoid the glut of Str 10 Dex ∞ DPR monsters, a thing I was not fond of in PF1.

I think what I'm going to do, so that I don't have to inject my game with any loathsome house rules, is direct her toward rogue instead. The shtick she wants to accomplish is using unarmed/claw attacks that are dex to hit and dex to damage. That can be done with using the monk archetype feats.

THEN I'd just need them to release an official catfolk ancestry.

Thieves don't get Dex to Damage with Unarmed Attacks. Only with Weapons.

CRB, p. 180 wrote:
When you attack with a finesse melee weapon, you can add your Dexterity modifier to damage rolls instead of your Strength modifier.
CRB, p. 278 wrote:
However, unarmed attacks aren’t weapons, and effects and abilities that work with weapons never work with unarmed attacks unless they specifically say so.

A fair point, but then that means Fighter Weapon Mastery doesn't improve Fist attacks since they are not weapons, and the ability targets weapons.

So there is no such thing as a Legendary Unarmed Attack proficiency in the game currently. How ironic.


That's incorrect (look up).


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Gisher wrote:
Filthy Lucre wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:

You increase stats four at a time, so "not having 18 strength eventually" is a deliberate choice.

But the difference between "max dex to damage" and "18 strength" is only like 3 damage per hit, which isn't really worth investing a lot of resources into.

I, for one, am glad that dex-to-damage is incredibly rare in PF2 so as to avoid the glut of Str 10 Dex ∞ DPR monsters, a thing I was not fond of in PF1.

I think what I'm going to do, so that I don't have to inject my game with any loathsome house rules, is direct her toward rogue instead. The shtick she wants to accomplish is using unarmed/claw attacks that are dex to hit and dex to damage. That can be done with using the monk archetype feats.

THEN I'd just need them to release an official catfolk ancestry.

Thieves don't get Dex to Damage with Unarmed Attacks. Only with Weapons.

CRB, p. 180 wrote:
When you attack with a finesse melee weapon, you can add your Dexterity modifier to damage rolls instead of your Strength modifier.
CRB, p. 278 wrote:
However, unarmed attacks aren’t weapons, and effects and abilities that work with weapons never work with unarmed attacks unless they specifically say so.

A fair point, but then that means Fighter Weapon Mastery doesn't improve Fist attacks since they are not weapons, and the ability targets weapons.

So there is no such thing as a Legendary Unarmed Attack proficiency in the game currently. How ironic.

That is incorrect, as, in addition to proficiency especially still being used for unarmed attacks, the CRB errata does address how unarmed proficiency increases when weapon proficiency especially increase.

"all Classes for unarmeD attaCk ProfiCienCy anD Benefits For any class feature that improves the proficiency rank or grants the critical specialization effect access for simple weapons or a specific set of weapons, that ability also grants that benefit for unarmed attacks."

So ALL fighters of sufficient level have legendary unarmed proficiency.


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In PF1 the Swashbuckler was *the* dex to damage class (the level 1 inspired blade dip was the #1 choice for instant fencing grace). In the APG playtest for PF2, the Swashbuckler (the best received class in the playtest) didn't have dex-to-damage. Instead, the PF2 swashbuckler has an additional mechanic, more involved than "add a number" to let them do more damage (briefly: you have panache or you don't, if you have panache you add static damage to your regular strikes, or extra dice to your finishing strikes, which cost you your panache).

The problem with "dex-to-damage" is that it implies "being stronger wouldn't help you hurt people more" which is a very specific flavor. It's appropriate for like a poisoner, or an assassin, but not really for a martial artist or a swashbuckler.

So if your concern is "dex-monks don't do enough damage" I would suggest that something other than "letting them not care about strength" would be more interesting.

I would note though that monks get immediate access to the most damaging finesse attacks in the game, as they have multiple one-handed 1d8 agile, finesse options from styles.


Filthy Lucre wrote:
As the DM I'm just going to give all agile and finesse weapons dex to damage and call it a day.

You can do whatever you want but this has been done before and it's really broken. DEX gives you so many benefits such as AC and saves and whatnot, that it makes it much more useful than all of the other stats.

With your favorite search engine you can find lots of posts on why dex to damage is problematic.


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Filthy Lucre wrote:
I really wish Pathfinder had taken a page out of D&D 5e's book when it came to strength and dexterity damage. I have a player who wants to make a monk but is really bummed out that they don't have dexterity to their damage. She wants to play a human reflavored as a nekomata/catfolk and the Tiger Stance makes her theme super easy to pull off... she just doesn't want to have to be a beef cake to do it.

I remember having to come to terms with that paradigm with the Swordmage in 4E. I wanted a magic, swordy dude, but didn't care for the imagery of the guy becoming more educated and erudite as the levels went up. Unfortunately, not obsessively bumping up your attack stat in that game is functionally character suicide.

So what I came to realize is: stat numbers are stat numbers, your character in-universe is your character in-universe, and if the two don't meet for some reason? Oh well. It's an imperfect interface, anyway, so play the character how you want, and nevermind what the stat array might insist on. I.e., your character does not HAVE to get any smarter just because you need his Int score to be a certain number, and having to max out a Str score in no way necessitates the character being a "beefcake".


Gisher wrote:
Filthy Lucre wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:

You increase stats four at a time, so "not having 18 strength eventually" is a deliberate choice.

But the difference between "max dex to damage" and "18 strength" is only like 3 damage per hit, which isn't really worth investing a lot of resources into.

I, for one, am glad that dex-to-damage is incredibly rare in PF2 so as to avoid the glut of Str 10 Dex ∞ DPR monsters, a thing I was not fond of in PF1.

I think what I'm going to do, so that I don't have to inject my game with any loathsome house rules, is direct her toward rogue instead. The shtick she wants to accomplish is using unarmed/claw attacks that are dex to hit and dex to damage. That can be done with using the monk archetype feats.

THEN I'd just need them to release an official catfolk ancestry.

Thieves don't get Dex to Damage with Unarmed Attacks. Only with Weapons.

CRB, p. 180 wrote:
When you attack with a finesse melee weapon, you can add your Dexterity modifier to damage rolls instead of your Strength modifier.
CRB, p. 278 wrote:
However, unarmed attacks aren’t weapons, and effects and abilities that work with weapons never work with unarmed attacks unless they specifically say so.

As much as I love 3.5 this is such a pointless hold over from that era. The advantage of having a "weapon" (your hand) that can't be disarmed does not warrant so many punishing rules.


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

What makes you think the intent is punitive?

Unarmed attacks, and counting them as weapons for certain effects, and the different rules for natural weapons were kind of a weird mess in 1E. I think that the 2E approach to unarmed attacks was intended to bring consistency, and limit unintended feat interactions, not to punish anything.

I'm not going to say that perfect clarity was achieved, but it does seem to be the goal.


HammerJack wrote:

What makes you think the intent is punitive?

Unarmed attacks, and counting them as weapons for certain effects, and the different rules for natural weapons were kind of a weird mess in 1E. I think that the 2E approach to unarmed attacks was intended to bring consistency, and limit unintended feat interactions, not to punish anything.

I'm not going to say that perfect clarity was achieved, but it does seem to be the goal.

To expand on this, I believe it is also in part because natural attacks are treated as unarmed attacks for things.


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Why not just give your brandnew catfolk ancestry a custom feat that allows them to dex to damage with their claws/unarmed attacks? Slide that dex to damage in without modifying the core rules. Heck make that a full on human heritage in the style of half-elf or half-orc and as she levels up come up with fun custom feats that will enhance the feline side of her character.

If she turns out to be too OP and overshadowing the other players just have a chat with her and tone it down somehow. It's a home game!

It makes sense to me to use the lever of the custom ancestry (albeit slightly modified human) to accomplish what she wants and still retain some opportunity cost as she'll have to give up the other heritage or ancestry feat options in order to get dat unarmed dex to damage.


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Or perhaps invent a reverse propulsive trait; one that lets you add half your dex to damage if you don't add your strength.


Also, and this might require some waiting or using the playtest version but the Swashbuckler in the APG playtest is 100% compatible with unarmed finesse combat. We don't have a Swashbuckler archetype yet, so you'd have to go Swashbuckler archetyping monk but I think this would work pretty well.

You just wouldn't have Tiger Style until 4th level. But I guess you could port forward the catfolk claw blades form 1st edition.


Claxon wrote:
HammerJack wrote:

What makes you think the intent is punitive?

Unarmed attacks, and counting them as weapons for certain effects, and the different rules for natural weapons were kind of a weird mess in 1E. I think that the 2E approach to unarmed attacks was intended to bring consistency, and limit unintended feat interactions, not to punish anything.

I'm not going to say that perfect clarity was achieved, but it does seem to be the goal.

To expand on this, I believe it is also in part because natural attacks are treated as unarmed attacks for things.

A "weapon" is a thing you use to attack people with - in this case your fist. It doesn't necessarily need to be an object. The reason for the distinction has everything, and only, to do with the way objects are enchanted by magic.

It's punitive because it's basically a flavor-ban.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Filthy Lucre wrote:
Claxon wrote:
HammerJack wrote:

What makes you think the intent is punitive?

Unarmed attacks, and counting them as weapons for certain effects, and the different rules for natural weapons were kind of a weird mess in 1E. I think that the 2E approach to unarmed attacks was intended to bring consistency, and limit unintended feat interactions, not to punish anything.

I'm not going to say that perfect clarity was achieved, but it does seem to be the goal.

To expand on this, I believe it is also in part because natural attacks are treated as unarmed attacks for things.

A "weapon" is a thing you use to attack people with - in this case your fist. It doesn't necessarily need to be an object. The reason for the distinction has everything, and only, to do with the way objects are enchanted by magic.

It's punitive because it's basically a flavor-ban.

By that reasoning all Rogue Rackets are "punitive" by restricting weapons that work with sneak attack and so are different spell lists!

I want to be a divine wizard but can't because the rules are a punitive flavor ban!

Why do you think it has to do with enchanting items?


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

I don't follow your reasoning. There is a solution for applying enchantments to all of your unarmed attacks, and the distinction definitely affects what feats work together.


HammerJack wrote:
I don't follow your reasoning. There is a solution for applying enchantments to all of your unarmed attacks, and the distinction definitely affects what feats work together.

Unarmed strikes and daggers are not, in my opinion, relevantly different but they are treated differently. That's what I mean.


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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I definitely like the design of Dex-to-damage being a special thing that only certain rogues can do, and I hope that doesn't change.

Dex-to-damage became a plague in late 1e because it was almost always optimal, and I definitely don't want to see that return.


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MaxAstro wrote:

I definitely like the design of Dex-to-damage being a special thing that only certain rogues can do, and I hope that doesn't change.

Dex-to-damage became a plague in late 1e because it was almost always optimal, and I definitely don't want to see that return.

With a different damage formula weighted towards weapon dice and the glut of level increases to stats, we're in a very different situation than PF1. With the difference being maybe +4 damage at 1st [and most likely going down as you level] and that many lost in using a finesse/agile weapon [lower die], it seems like a lot of worry over nothing. Static bonuses are just lower and less important in PF2.


Filthy Lucre wrote:
HammerJack wrote:
I don't follow your reasoning. There is a solution for applying enchantments to all of your unarmed attacks, and the distinction definitely affects what feats work together.
Unarmed strikes and daggers are not, in my opinion, relevantly different but they are treated differently. That's what I mean.

That's what's great about home games, you can mess with the rules as you wish. But the experience of 1e is that allowing unarmed and natural attacks to work like weapon combat leads to a whole whack load of unintended consequences (also that dex to damage unbalances the game).

Heck as an example of these consequences, the rogue dex to damage racket would make the rogue a better unarmed fighter than dex monks if it wasn't restricted to weapons only. And that would really hurt the fantasy of the monk as the unarmed master. So if you're searching for what makes daggers and fists different, I would say the fantasy of unarmed combat is a key point of difference between the two.

The custom ancestry/heritage/feat I'm proposing if published for everyone would make it so everyone would play a catfolk to get that dex to damage boost. It's great for a home game but baaaad for a widely published product.


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Vlorax wrote:
By that reasoning all Rogue Rackets are "punitive" by restricting weapons that work with sneak attack

I mean, kind of.

It's not really the end of the world but PF2 has definitely approached things like weapon choice with the mindset of nudging players into picking 'correct' options and making it hard to do something else.

Even weapons that do work but aren't part of the default assumptions (like kukris and sai) are hard to utilize because the game has put a lot of work into making it very hard for characters to broaden their proficiencies.

Admittedly, in this specific case the mechanics don't work probably to specifically disallow the stacking of Thief and Stances for mechanical reasons, but that's still very much a self inflicted issue.

GM Stargin wrote:
But the experience of 1e is that allowing unarmed and natural attacks to work like weapon combat leads to a whole whack load of unintended consequences

More the opposite, really. The problem with natural and unarmed attacks in 1e is that they followed all sorts of kind of arbitrary rules where sometimes they functioned like weapons and sometimes they didn't (and sometimes unarmed attacks were treated like regular weapons and sometimes like natural attacks which had completely distinct rulesets for no good reason).

And given that we've already seen errata for unarmed attacks patching various holes left by 2e's stance on unarmed, I'm not sure this approach has really been that much better.


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Vlorax wrote:
By that reasoning all Rogue Rackets are "punitive" by restricting weapons that work with sneak attack and so are different spell lists!

Um, all Rogue Rackets ARE punitive by restricting weapons that work with sneak attack. It was punitive in 4E, and it's punitive now in 5E, P2E, and SF's Operative class. It might be different if the Rogue/Operative's SOLE and EXCLUSIVE purpose was to be the vehicle by which using Rogue or Operative weapons was made relevant, but that's not the case. The Rogue/Operative is ALSO the "skills" class, and for anyone picking the Rogue or Operative class for that purpose, getting saddled with an arbitrary and hyper-restrictive list of "approved" weapons from out of nowhere is very much unwelcome.

I mean, what if I were to make the statement "every Wizard you ever played had green eyes"? The two have nothing to do with each other and it's complete nonsense to try and manufacture a causal connection. And yet, "skills guy" somehow automatically equates to "uses daggers, shortswords, and precious little else"?

Screw that noise.


Tectorman wrote:


I mean, what if I were to make the statement "every Wizard you ever played had green eyes"?

Funny you pull that particular example. In 7th Sea practitioners of Pyeryem (spelling butchered, but basically shapeshifting magic) as a rule did have green eyes, color changing as needed if they developed it later in life. No real point I'm trying to make with this but just an amusing parallel.


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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
graystone wrote:
MaxAstro wrote:

I definitely like the design of Dex-to-damage being a special thing that only certain rogues can do, and I hope that doesn't change.

Dex-to-damage became a plague in late 1e because it was almost always optimal, and I definitely don't want to see that return.

With a different damage formula weighted towards weapon dice and the glut of level increases to stats, we're in a very different situation than PF1. With the difference being maybe +4 damage at 1st [and most likely going down as you level] and that many lost in using a finesse/agile weapon [lower die], it seems like a lot of worry over nothing. Static bonuses are just lower and less important in PF2.

I don't care that it's a small difference and wouldn't be unbalancing; I care that min-maxers don't gravitate towards 8 Str/18 Dex builds.


MaxAstro wrote:
graystone wrote:
MaxAstro wrote:

I definitely like the design of Dex-to-damage being a special thing that only certain rogues can do, and I hope that doesn't change.

Dex-to-damage became a plague in late 1e because it was almost always optimal, and I definitely don't want to see that return.

With a different damage formula weighted towards weapon dice and the glut of level increases to stats, we're in a very different situation than PF1. With the difference being maybe +4 damage at 1st [and most likely going down as you level] and that many lost in using a finesse/agile weapon [lower die], it seems like a lot of worry over nothing. Static bonuses are just lower and less important in PF2.
I don't care that it's a small difference and wouldn't be unbalancing; I care that min-maxers don't gravitate towards 8 Str/18 Dex builds.

If you don't like min-maxers don't play with them.

The Concordance

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Filthy Lucre wrote:


If you don't like min-maxers don't play with them.

Unfortunately. that statement is as useful as us replying "if you don't like lack of dex-to-damage. Just over-rule it." Clearly it is an option, and one you took. But it is also an option you knew about from the beginning, before even starting this thread, and did not change your desire to comment on how you wished things were different.

AKA. It is more useful to stick to explanations of why you like/don't like how things are. Rather than simply saying "If you don't like X. don't play with it."

Just my two cents.

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