Interesting Time for PF2 with D&D 5.5 / 6th coming 2024


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion

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So I'm hoping that if 5.5/6 is more complicated, that it makes people more open to trying pf2. "Oh man, 5.5 is way better now that I have more character choices beyond spells past level 5! What else is out there?" Kind of mentality. Fingers crossed!


At least new mage wasn't mentioned, then I'd be really dismissive.

More on track, I sincerely do hope for great things out of 5.5. While I'm unlikely to shift from GMing PF2, I wouldn't be opposed to playing a 5th ed that was 10% more char gen and tactics focused. Basically if they doing anything to make adv/disadv interesting I'd be in.


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Color me curious. PF 1e is still my favorite fantasy rpg. I've played 2e and D&D 5e, and they're both fine, but 1e is my first love. Still, I'm quite happy to try out a 5.5/6e, just like I was happy to try out PF 2e and D&D 5e.


The-Magic-Sword wrote:

"PF2's player base may actually have more former/current 5E players than former/current PF1 players at this point"

is something that's explicitly true of r/Pathfinder2e interestingly, we've done surveys about it there, its like 60% former 5e players at last count, and I can only imagine its gone up in the months since.

That's bound to only increase over time, as 5E continues to grow while PF1 remains relatively stagnant. At some data point in the future it will get to 80-90 percent.


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The Rot Grub wrote:
The-Magic-Sword wrote:

"PF2's player base may actually have more former/current 5E players than former/current PF1 players at this point"

is something that's explicitly true of r/Pathfinder2e interestingly, we've done surveys about it there, its like 60% former 5e players at last count, and I can only imagine its gone up in the months since.

That's bound to only increase over time, as 5E continues to grow while PF1 remains relatively stagnant. At some data point in the future it will get to 80-90 percent.

Some more PF1 holdouts will likely shift over, but that's a finite resource. As you suggest, at this point 5E is overwhelmingly the entry point into the hobby. Any game looking for newer players rather than trying to appeal to a shrinking grognard base is going to be recruiting from 5E.

Until the next version of D&D comes out, which could change everything. If it's a failure, that's a big short term opportunity for others, though probably bad for the hobby as a whole. If a success, it'll keep bringing new players in and we'll eventually see some of those new players trying out other games.


Taçin wrote:
5e would need rebuilding from the ground up to end with a cohesive system, and I'm not sure WOTC is willing to flip their golden goose upside down even if it resulted in a better game for casual and experienced fans alike...

The hidden news behind the announcement that the new edition will be "backwards compatible" is that this complete redesign is likely postponed for another indefinite period (another 10 years?) I wouldn't be surprised that part of the reason for not releasing new classes has been that they are waiting for the 2024 version before they start to expand into new classes.

Taçin wrote:
Action Economy? "Can I use my bonus action to do X" is the 1º most asked question from new 5e players for a reason, the entire thing is inconsistent, and weaponizing one's bonus action is the easiest way to break the existent power curve. A worthy revision would need to define the worth of a BA in a clear manner and offer a way for every class to fill theirs with something useful if its meant to be a part of the regular Action Econ.

I'm making One Bold Prediction(TM) of what D&D will change, to become "more like PF2e" while remaining backwards compatible:

Allow players to make a single attack with their Bonus Action, but with some form of mechanical disadvantage.

(This would also mean a reworking of monster hit points to reflect the PCs doing relatively more damage.)

Also, we already see some of the previewed statblocks now giving monsters something to do with their Bonus Action.

It will become more 2E-like because everyone will be able to do more than 1 significant thing per turn. But it will still be relatively clunky as well (compared to PF2). It will mean some happier players, however - if they're at a loss as to how to use their Bonus Action, they'll just attack again like they've already been doing. Lastly, it would allow players and DMs to come up with more things to do with the Bonus Action, because now it at least incurs an opportunity cost for not making an attack.

Paizo Employee Director of Community

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Removed some sniping posts. Now returning you to the original discussion.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Superscriber
TheGoofyGE3K wrote:
So I'm hoping that if 5.5/6 is more complicated, that it makes people more open to trying pf2. "Oh man, 5.5 is way better now that I have more character choices beyond spells past level 5! What else is out there?" Kind of mentality. Fingers crossed!

Based on the details they released today about changes to Monsters/Races I wouldn't get your hopes up.

- languages are being removed entirely

- Alignment is being removed for all humanoids/monstrous humanoids and is being prefaced with "Typically..." for factions and outsiders. So if you encounter the Cult of the Baby Eater it will say "typically chaotic evil"

- Humanoid races can be medium OR small with no height restrictions and all humanoid races have a lifespan of about 100 years except dwarves and elves. I give it 2 days before someone makes Carrot from Guards, Guards or a 5 foot tall gnome

- spells for monsters are being reduced/optimized to favor things relevant to combat


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Leon Aquilla wrote:
I give it 2 days before someone makes Carrot from Guards, Guards or a 5 foot tall gnome.

Show of hands, has anybody *not* made Carrot Ironfoundersson as a Adopted Ancestry-based human probably fighter in PF2E yet?


TheGoofyGE3K wrote:
So I'm hoping that if 5.5/6 is more complicated, that it makes people more open to trying pf2. "Oh man, 5.5 is way better now that I have more character choices beyond spells past level 5! What else is out there?" Kind of mentality. Fingers crossed!

This seems backwards to me; wouldn't people satisfied with 5E be less likely to explore other systems? If anything if it starts copying the complexity of PF2 more rules lite systems might have a better chance of poaching the people who play 5E because its easy for newcomers. As much as internet forums skew the perception of what 5E "should" do (and believe me I'm in that crowd of people who detest 5E for what it is) the system has been extremely successful by staying simple and chasing the people who leave for Pathfinder would only upset the larger market that more niche games like Pathfinder can never catch.


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Leon Aquilla wrote:
TheGoofyGE3K wrote:
So I'm hoping that if 5.5/6 is more complicated, that it makes people more open to trying pf2. "Oh man, 5.5 is way better now that I have more character choices beyond spells past level 5! What else is out there?" Kind of mentality. Fingers crossed!

Based on the details they released today about changes to Monsters/Races I wouldn't get your hopes up.

- languages are being removed entirely

- Alignment is being removed for all humanoids/monstrous humanoids and is being prefaced with "Typically..." for factions and outsiders. So if you encounter the Cult of the Baby Eater it will say "typically chaotic evil"

- Humanoid races can be medium OR small with no height restrictions and all humanoid races have a lifespan of about 100 years except dwarves and elves. I give it 2 days before someone makes Carrot from Guards, Guards or a 5 foot tall gnome

- spells for monsters are being reduced/optimized to favor things relevant to combat

Having found what I believe to be the release in question, this is is somewhat misleading.

-It appears that default language proficiencies are being removed in favour of the ability to pick bonus languages for your character at will. This is judged on the two new ancestries released in the feywild book, said to reflect a new direction in general. This would allow for example an elf who doesn't know elven because they were raised by dwarves, but not remove the languages themselves.

-General humanoids are listed as 'any alignment' while specific characters have their own alignments. Members of aligned factions are given the 'typically' treatment that outsiders get, but I don't believe it was specifically stated how the factions themselves will be denoted. Cult of the Baby Eaters might still be CE, while its cultists would be "typically CE" depending on their personal moral outlook.

-The two new ancestries in the Feywild book have an especially wide range of sizes and can be either Small or Medium. This is not said to be the new norm but rather a thing that will be seen on more playable creatures in the future. That said, height and age ranges do seem to be going away, replaced with a note that regardless of species most humanoids live around a century and have height and weight comparable to humans.

-Your remark on monster spells confused me the most when I got to the article because I read the opposite happening. Combat spells are being removed from monster statblocks in favour of noncombat utility. Rather, monsters with magical firepower will instead have special magic attacks, presumably to clean the spell list up so you don't have to search for combat spells in the list (same as the apparent reason for moving reaction and bonus action spells to their own categories)

In case I have misunderstood or misrepresented anything, here is the link to the source I found for this information.
https://dnd.wizards.com/articles/sage-advice/creature-evolutions


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It's more work towards removing biological essentialism from D&D, which seems generally good to me.

That and making monster stat blocks more legible.

5.5 as D&D5 but a little neater, and a lot more accessible is a good bet, and a fine target!

In fact, I think Paizo fell short in NOT divorcing Language from Ancestry. Language should be part of the Background step. And honestly not INT based at all.

BACKGROUND: Pick 1-3 languages you spoke in the culture you grew up in (it should include Common for ease of play). List of languages including the Golarion ones and meta regions they're spoken in.

And buff INT some other small way too would be nice but not even necessary.


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I like intelligence being tied to languages. chances are a wizard is literate in more languages bc they want access to more content in any given library


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Perpdepog wrote:
Leon Aquilla wrote:
I give it 2 days before someone makes Carrot from Guards, Guards or a 5 foot tall gnome.
Show of hands, has anybody *not* made Carrot Ironfoundersson as a Adopted Ancestry-based human probably fighter in PF2E yet?

*keeps hand firmly down*


Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Superscriber
vagrant-poet wrote:

It's more work towards removing biological essentialism from D&D, which seems generally good to me.

That and making monster stat blocks more legible.

5.5 as D&D5 but a little neater, and a lot more accessible is a good bet, and a fine target!

In fact, I think Paizo fell short in NOT divorcing Language from Ancestry. Language should be part of the Background step. And honestly not INT based at all.

BACKGROUND: Pick 1-3 languages you spoke in the culture you grew up in (it should include Common for ease of play). List of languages including the Golarion ones and meta regions they're spoken in.

And buff INT some other small way too would be nice but not even necessary.

I recall coming to a point where I'd considered having INT potentially tied to additional Written languages know, and potentially having CHA tied to additional Interactive languages(spoken, signed, etc.). It gave Charisma something extra that seemed reasonable. Knowing how to interact and request things from others is definitely a CHA thing and languages can fall under that.

In campaign settings where literacy is not as much of an assumption as it seems to be in Golarion, it makes a decent distinction in how you know a particular language.

I'd admit that it does make sense to have language potentially come in the background phase rather than as tightly tied to ancestry.

Acquisitives

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Wonders if they will fix their ranger....

Liberty's Edge

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For PF2 I agree with Languages coming from background rather than Ancestry, but bonus languages from INT actually makes the most sense.

And the Multilingual Skill feat for PCs with low INT but many languages. Emissary is a great background for this.


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WatersLethe wrote:
Perpdepog wrote:
Leon Aquilla wrote:
I give it 2 days before someone makes Carrot from Guards, Guards or a 5 foot tall gnome.
Show of hands, has anybody *not* made Carrot Ironfoundersson as a Adopted Ancestry-based human probably fighter in PF2E yet?
*keeps hand firmly down*

The whole Adopted trait/Adopted Ancestry thing from PF1 and PF2 smells horribly of cheese…dwarven cheese.


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I think the issue with tying language to Background, is that most backgrounds have nothing to do with language. Some do (Merchants having an extra language for example) but being a Labourer or Farmer or Criminal etc tell you nothing about what languages you would pick up.

Now if there was an extra character creation step like upbringing, which included where and with whom your formative years were, that would make sense. But as we don't have that, then Ancestry becomes the nearest fallback.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I feel like the Core Rulebook makes it clear that you can swap languages out, although it could definitely be more explicit about it.

In a future edition, they could probably just go with:

Two languages appropriate to your upbringing (typically Common and Elven) plus a number of additional languages equal to your Intelligence modifier.


Language - Out of all the deterministic baggage of ancestries - always seemed like the easiest to fix, very few in their right mind would argue that elves are born with an inherent knowledge of Elven and would still know it even if they were abandoned as an infant in a gnomish village. "Tendency towards XYZ behavior" and inherent mental boosts/penalties were always the trickier side of the equation; considering A. The social and moral implication of these mental conditions and B. There's a very narrow mechanical benefit to knowing X language instead of Y and it may never come into effect in a game either way.

But then again, I've never been in a table with a hardline legal positivist fervorous enough to argue in favor of what's written in the book above any and all logic or author's intentions.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I do not think Wizards/Hasbro is clear on how much will change or be added. They are sending out more surveys in 2022. I think the feedback they get will guide how many options are added and tweaks made.


Taçin wrote:

Language - Out of all the deterministic baggage of ancestries - always seemed like the easiest to fix, very few in their right mind would argue that elves are born with an inherent knowledge of Elven and would still know it even if they were abandoned as an infant in a gnomish village. "Tendency towards XYZ behavior" and inherent mental boosts/penalties were always the trickier side of the equation; considering A. The social and moral implication of these mental conditions and B. There's a very narrow mechanical benefit to knowing X language instead of Y and it may never come into effect in a game either way.

But then again, I've never been in a table with a hardline legal positivist fervorous enough to argue in favor of what's written in the book above any and all logic or author's intentions.

Yeah, I mean we can make this assumption for the general population. Luckily this is a TTRPG, not a cRPG, and you can negotiate anything with your game master. I know I wouldn't ban my players from swapping languages given good explanation.

This is why I don't mind languages tied to ancestries, although I understand it can cause some frustrations in PFS games.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Something to remember with the transistion from AD&D and 2nd edition D&D is that most didn't see a difference when playing the game, running first edition material with adjustments along with second edition hybrid rules. Most GMs simply folded things over and kept going.

My most horrible experience is the running of a 1st edition Assassin with a 2nd edition (Mostly) based group.

"Here, I will take care of it, just stay back and watch..."

The Assassin has never been right ever since, and is rightly regulated to an "evil" class that most campaigns use as an NPC character in the Class kit in 2nd ed and the Predtige class in 3.0/PF1.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I do think the ranger will get reworked and allot of the additional features added in Tashas will be added to 5.5 where you could swap out class features. I think Tashas may be the base for some of the rangers changes. My hope was that the new addition people who were on the fence and wanted more options would take the chance and try PF2.


Deriven Firelion wrote:
Shrink Laureate wrote:

While there are lots of things I'd like them to improve in a 5.5, I don't expect them to do any of them.

The classes in 5e feel quite bare, and subclasses alone aren't enough to stop them feeling identical. Every barbarian the same, every bard the same, etc. You can roleplay very different characters, but the game rules doesn't support you in it. A 5.5 player's handbook could come with new, rebalanced versions of the core classes, that have more customisation and are still fully compatible with the 5e engine.

Races could also be improved. They could stop using the word "race", they could use heritages the way Pathfinder 2 does, and they could incorporate the flexible stat rules from Tasha's Cauldron into the core rules.

But they won't.

I expect the anniversary edition will mostly just be a shiny repackaging. It might incorporate a couple of subclasses from other books, and fix the odd little mistake, but it won't change much of anything.

As long as they have a bunch of celebrities onboard playing D&D 5E due to its simplicity, I can't see them messing it up. This is the most mainstream I've ever seen D&D in my life. It's mainly because a good number of Hollywood celebs have embraced it.

If I were a D&D product manager, I wouldn't mess up what was working. I'd secretly play other editions of D&D and sell 5E hard for its simplicity.

"A bit" late, but personally, I'd expect them to actually release complexity-increasing optional rules like the design team had been planning to do, so they could have their cake and eat it too. 5e's biggest strength is that the rules are a simple but modular framework, with variant & optional rules designed as plug-ins to allow groups to customise its complexity, but this has been criminally neglected; the only places it really sees use are with feats & multiclassing, which are clearly only "optional" to give neophytes time to learn the basics first so they won't be scared away by the feat list. But apart from that, WotC has near-completely squandered 5e's biggest strength, and the entire game has suffered for it. [Conversely, if it had been done properly, then it would've been a system that defaults to simple, to help act as a gateway and ease new players into the hobby, but allows groups to scale the complexity up to near-3.5e/PF1 levels, or anywhere in between. There are still hints of this (it's honestly not that hard to see that the game is intended to be played with feats, and that Variant Human is the "main" human race; feats default to off so they don't scare people away, and vanilla human is basically a featless filler to parallel that), and it's been confirmed by some of 5e's original design team, but... honestly, that fell to the wayside when WotC saw how big it was and realised they could milk it for all it's worth instead. /sigh]

With that in mind, I'd hope that the new book includes things like...

Quote:
  • • Mini-feats (optional rule): Add a second feat track independent of your ASIs, which allows characters to choose from a list of smaller, less potent feats. (Could either be at every even level, or at non-ASI even levels.) These feats are smaller and less character-defining than the current feats, being more akin to 3.5e/PF1 feats, PF1 class feat prototypes (e.g., rogue talents), PF2 class & skill feats, or 5e's half-feats (without the +1). This allows more design flexibility, without sacrificing raw stats. [This could include both a generic list of class-independent feats, and a list of class-specific ones. I'd almost want to suggest adding in both class feat and skill feat tracks, but then it'd just be too blatant that they're copying PF2.]

  • • Curated feat list (revision): The "standard" feat list is supposed to consist of character-defining packages, each of which is roughly as effective as "+1 to literally everything that matters to you." ...Needless to say, this isn't actually the case. I'd like the main feat list to be revised, so that every option actually is beefy enough to be worth sacrificing an ASI for, and anything that isn't up to snuff either gets buffed or is moved to the mini-feat list. [This way, they have room for interesting yet weaker feats that aren't worth an ASI, while also having a balancing tool that allows them to add potent feats that would be too overpowered if you didn't need to trade an ASI for them.]

  • • Multiclassing revision: If they're going to change the feat system, they need to look at multiclassing rules. (On the grounds that with feats tied to ASIs, multiclassing is likely the reason that ASIs are tied to class level instead of character level.) It would need to be adjusted slightly to compensate for mini-feats, though that shouldn't take too much work... and maybe adjusted to counter specific combinations like Coffeelock, too. ;3

  • • Alternate racial traits/ancestry feats (optional rule): Look, we all know that Tabaxi are just Amurruns that cheat with their alternate racial traits, right? (They added Cat's Claws & Climber, but didn't remove Natural Hunter or Sprinter.) So, if they want to copy PF1, just do it. It wouldn't be the first time D&D took an idea from Pathfinder, after all. ;3

  • • Flat numerical modifiers (optional rule): Normally, 5e tries to only apply one flat modifier per role, or very rarely two (e.g., if you have both a magic weapon and a fighting style like Duelist), and use dis/advantage as the primary situational modifier. This makes the math easy to track, yes, but also makes it significantly less flexible, and clumsier to introduce homebrew & house rules with more granular effects. It'd be nice to see a cleanly codified subsystem for introducing crunchier math, especially one that's designed to interact with the bounded math without breaking it. [Maybe something like... "Up to 5 modifiers are allowed, each with a different trait; in case of multiple modifers with the same trait, use the most directly relevant modifier (or your DM will tell you which one to use, or [something]). All bonuses or penalties are worth +1 or -1, respectively, unless otherwise specified."]

  • • Fix TWF (revision): Anyone who's tried to make a dual-wielder in 5e knows what I'm talking about. It shouldn't be too powerful, but when the math shows that it's a crutch (is decently strong at low levels, and is roughly equivalent to great weapons at Lv.5, but falls behind at Lv.11... or whenever you get any other bonus action options)... Maybe something like baking one offhand attack into your standard attack, possibly with a flat penalty, and allowing you to match your mainhand attacks with a bonus action. (E.g., if you have 3 mainhand attacks, then you get 1 offhand by default, and can use a bonus action to make 2 more offhand attacks.) Oh, and fix Dual Wielder, since it's actually worse than an ASI in most situations.

  • • Expand the maneuver system: One of the biggest places that 5e struggles is giving choices to martials. At the moment, the two places they've really tried are the Battle Master and the Artificer; BM has a full-fledged maneuver system that sees significant use nowhere else (there are a few options that give you a taste of it, but nowhere near that depth), while Artificer literally just gives you spells and says you can flavour them as non-magical if you want. Clearly, there's a winner here, and WotC doesn't know what to actually do with it. Hopefully, it'll be expanded into a full-fledged martial counterpart to the mages' spells, ideally with a double dose of Weeaboo Fightan Magic in hopes of ToB's lightning striking twice. [Could be either a revision or an optional rule, I'm not sure which works best here. An optional rule would be less breaking, but would likely lead to new lists on par with the Feats "optional" rule.]

  • • Put all the basic special attacks in the PHB (revision): ...And on that note, make sure that all of the actions are visible to everyone. Battle Master's strength is supposed to be that they have the option of adding a bonus to most of the things they want to do, but poor implementation gives the impression that a decent number of basics are only available to them. (Even minmaxers have said that only BMs are allowed to, e.g., Disarm, even though 5e has a Disarm special attack... buried in the DMG, instead of in the PHB where it belongs.)

  • • More granular proficiency system (optional rule): 5e's math is based on having a specific proficiency bonus at specific levels, but even then it still has a couple of steps to it (half, normal, and double). Why not just go whole hog, and flesh that out into something more akin to PF2 tiers, and give players some control over what goes where, and which proficiencies increase? Six (maybe five) tiers, each of which is worth +2, with limits on when you unlock new tiers; it may also be wise to limit weapon proficiencies to the first four tiers, and only allow the top two for skill/tool proficiencies. The math wouldn't be significantly impacted, since players could use the standard proficiency bonus as a guideline, but it would give them more freedom to customise their character.

  • • PF2 ability-damage conditions (optional rule): Blending ability damage into specific conditions was a smart move on Paizo's part, and I'd like to see it become the standard for the entire d20 family.
  • • Prestige classes (optional rule): While archetypes and full-package feats can fill the same mechanical niche if done properly, a lot of players like the idea of being able to go from their base class into a more specialised version of it that adds unique properties. Whether these are added as new classes (akin to the Rune Scribe experiment, which was marred by just plain being a bad prestige class in general) or not, it'd still be interesting to see a new take on them. [Personally, I'd like to see prestige classes as class add-ons that can be unlocked by meeting specific conditions, which either replace or enhance certain class features (or maybe, e.g., have features for Lv.X, Y, and Z, and allow you to choose whether you want the base class feature or the prestige class feature whenever you reach one of those levels). Some could be tied to specific classes, or some could have more generic requirements.]

  • • More Alternate Class Features (optional rule): Make them a base rule, and add more of them. Don't just relegate them to Tasha's or prestige classes.

  • • Archetype expansions (optional rule): Add new choices for each archetype, possibly (but not necessarily) at levels where they don't normally give you anything. Would allow for more build flexibility, but would admittedly be a lot of work.

  • • More homebrew advice: 5e is a flexible system, and one that in all honesty, WotC doesn't have a clue how to handle properly. And most interestingly, they seem to be aware of this. There has to be a reason the DMG devotes significant page space to telling you how to homebrew content, and that even the PHB has a section on homebrewing backgrounds, after all. So, why not just go all in? Give players a list of standard design guidelines, and a hyperlink to the design bible if they want more detailed information. And while you're at it, give them the actual CR equations instead of just the non-functional approximations from the DMG. Assuming WotC finally managed to reverse-engineer them and figure out how their own CR equations work, at least, since the DMG ones are just a simplification of WotC's best attempt at reverse engineering their own system (after forgetting how it actually works internally).

  • • Competent CR rules (addition): Yes, this one's so bad that I'm mentioning it twice. The CR & encounter design section of the DMG is a complete & utter mess, and in all honesty, is almost entirely non-functional. It's not even a simplification of the official rules that WotC uses, either; it's an attempt to reverse-engineer their own rules, since the official rules are buried in a spreadshot and they forgot how they made them, and how & why they work. It's really telling that people have made rules that both work better and fit on a business card.

  • • Exploration pillar (addition): For as much as the game claims to have three pillars, it... really doesn't. Hopefully they'll actually figure out how to fix that and add the third pillar that they've claimed has been there all along! ^_^ [This would also go a good way towards helping with the martial/caster issue, and with rangers being so flawed a class.]

  • • Make Int great again (revision/meme): ...Yeah, I don't think this one needs all that much said about it. Int is the most useless stat in 5e, hands down. Even Str has some places where it's useful, and characters can have reasons not to dump it, but most classes have to put a lot of work into trying to make Int even remotely useful (and probably still failing). Sad thing is, I'm not sure how to do this, myself, in large part due to how proficiency works; with just normal proficiency rules, the primary vector for buffing Int (proficiencies) would just introduce more overlap & make characters more samey. It would be easy with more granular proficiencies, for example, or if languages and/or exploration were more relevant, but... yeah. xD

  • • More/Better DM guidelines (revision): 5e is meant to value rulings over rules, and as such gives a lot of freedom to the DM. ...Problem is, there are places where it gives too much freedom, with no suggestions of how to use it. A few loose rules for what to base rulings on, (e.g., a better price chart for magic items) would go a long way here.

  • • Fix the balance issues (revision): ...Yeah, I probably don't need to say much here, either. Adjust class balance, make rangers useful, give Performance at least one mechanical effect (and give bards a non-flavour reason to take it), stuff like that.

There are a lot of other ideas I've had about it over time, though these are the ones that come to mind for now. (Well, I'd also like to see more done with dis/advantage, but I'm not sure exactly what... but I digress.) And... honestly, I'd almost want them to ask another company like Paizo, Rogue Genius Games, Legendary Games, or one of the other d20 big names to help out, since 5e's biggest flaw by far is that WotC calls the shots; it really says something that most third-party content tends to be more functional and better balanced than a great deal of official content, after all.


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P2e really illuminated how bad multiticlassing is in 5e. I always knew it was feast or famine, with certain combinations being broken, but seeing another fantasy system of similar design space with meaningful/balanced multiclassing was a culture shock. You would really have to retool 5e classes to get the level of satisfying mix and match that that P2e offers. I rarely multiclassed in 5e bc I didn't wanna be that "that guy" or actively hamper my character's performance. I'm confident more class choice throughout the leveling process will show up in 5.5 but I think multiclassing is gonna stay in the same boat.


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Like all previous elfgames, I will judge these primarily by "how good the monk class is".


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
Like all previous elfgames, I will judge these primarily by "how good the monk class is".

A fellow person of culture! My metric is monk and ranger.

Liberty's Edge

thaX wrote:

Something to remember with the transistion from AD&D and 2nd edition D&D is that most didn't see a difference when playing the game, running first edition material with adjustments along with second edition hybrid rules. Most GMs simply folded things over and kept going.

My most horrible experience is the running of a 1st edition Assassin with a 2nd edition (Mostly) based group.

"Here, I will take care of it, just stay back and watch..."

The Assassin has never been right ever since, and is rightly regulated to an "evil" class that most campaigns use as an NPC character in the Class kit in 2nd ed and the Predtige class in 3.0/PF1.

I played AD&D enthusiastically and never got on the 2nd edition train because it felt so completely different.


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keftiu wrote:

To defend the 4e Realms’s honor somewhat: there’s a nation perched on the land around (and into) a massive rift into the Underdark, populated by an alliance of dwarves, renegade drow, and the largest remnant of the god of invention’s faith.

They’re just to the south of an ancient artificer empire recently returned to the surface, a belligerent empire of undead, a merchant republic of geniekin, and a militant outpost of alien dragonfolk.

It ruled.

4e Forgotten Realms was much like 4e itself: perfectly cromulent on its own, but too big a departure from its predecessor thereby alienating previous fans.

Moving back to the original topic: I'm 99% certain that 5.5e will mechanically be the same as 5e. You will see the current ideas about lineages (formerly known as races) incorporated (and likely fine-tuned), as well as the ideas they've been bouncing around about lightening up on alignment for creatures. They'll likely also incorporate the changes from Tasha's into the core classes, as well as the format changes for spellcasters (where many are simplified the same way they were in 4e – instead of a list of a dozen spells and spell slots, give them 3-4 abilities that work like spells but are defined in the actual stat block). But they don't want to invalidate previous product, so I think the changes will be on the scale of 3.5 or less.


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WWHsmackdown wrote:
P2e really illuminated how bad multiticlassing is in 5e. I always knew it was feast or famine, with certain combinations being broken, but seeing another fantasy system of similar design space with meaningful/balanced multiclassing was a culture shock. You would really have to retool 5e classes to get the level of satisfying mix and match that that P2e offers. I rarely multiclassed in 5e bc I didn't wanna be that "that guy" or actively hamper my character's performance. I'm confident more class choice throughout the leveling process will show up in 5.5 but I think multiclassing is gonna stay in the same boat.

Meanwhile, I personally consider PF2's "multiclassing" (actually subclassing) to be inferior to 3.5e, PF1, and 5e multiclassing, on the grounds that the system gives you very little control over how much you want to invest, and just forces you to be class A dabbling in class B. Don't get me wrong, it's a good implementation of a subclass system like you'd find in most Etrian Odyssey games, but the way it's implemented just plain doesn't do it for me as a primary means of multiclassing. I'm not sure if there's anything that can be done about this, since full-fledged multiclassing would break PF2's math in many, many ways, but alas.

5e's multiclassing could be improved, but it's not actually as bad as it first appears. The biggest point in its favour is that 5e's tier system is the main "power level" mechanic, not character level. This has the strange effect that in most cases, multiclassing tends to result in a character that's underpowered at the start of each tier, but matches or surpasses monoclass characters for the rest of the tier. (Which, in turn, is why ASIs/feats are also a tradeoff for multiclassing.) There are a few places that could use improvement, though, for sure; 3-level dip syndrome really shouldn't be a thing, for example, yet it nearly always tends to be an extremely good investment if you know what you're doing. ;P

Honestly, I'd love to see a system that uses both types of multiclassing, with special attention paid to balance. Something that'd allow you to dip into other classes if you want to customise your core package (proficiencies, sneak attack, HP, etc.) or model a character that doesn't match any one class' progression (standard multiclassing), and/or also take specialised training (feats) from a different class while retaining your primary class' chassis (PF2 multiclass archetypes). Problem is that both are hard enough to balance individually (case in point, every 3.5e character ever ), so allowing them to both be used together without breaking a game wide open would take an Herculean effort. [At the very least, feature progression with standard multiclassing would need careful curation, because of the usual multiclassing paradox: Classes need to be somewhat front-loaded so new characters can survive, but front-loaded features tend to be easy picking if you can multiclass normally. There would need to be a mechanism to control this; perhaps taking a feature from your dip class means sacrificing a feature from your primary class? Modeling it as feats is a nice approach, but PF2's take doesn't go far enough to feel like full multiclassing; PF2 rogue dip's sneak attack is almost an insult, for example. But free access without abandoned can easily break a game wide open, so it needs a lot of thought put into how to do it right.]


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PF2 multiclassing is inferior in that it is tightly controlled so you can't all the features os your second class. Which is the point, some sort of balanced needs to be maintained.

What you really want are Dual clas PCS which is a variant rule, and clearly are a bit more powerful. I guess you could ask for it in games where they are playing free archetype etc.

Unfortunately there is not much in the middle. But a character multiclassed into a wizard is half a wizard and still quite useful in that. So I'm not really sure how much of a gap there is for what you want.

The thing is, everything is level gated, and by and large PF2 got it right where as D&D5 stuffed it up by screwing up total character levels and having too many classes with front loaded powers.


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Gortle wrote:

PF2 multiclassing is inferior in that it is tightly controlled so you can't all the features os your second class. Which is the point, some sort of balanced needs to be maintained.

What you really want are Dual clas PCS which is a variant rule, and clearly are a bit more powerful. I guess you could ask for it in games where they are playing free archetype etc.

Unfortunately there is not much in the middle. But a character multiclassed into a wizard is half a wizard and still quite useful in that. So I'm not really sure how much of a gap there is for what you want.

The thing is, everything is level gated, and by and large PF2 got it right where as D&D5 stuffed it up by screwing up total character levels and having too many classes with front loaded powers.

A dual class character is very different from a 3.5/PF1 style multiclass. Dual class is what used to be called "Gestalt" where you got to full classes.

PF2 multiclass dedications are very much an extension of PF1 variant multiclassing. Where Paizo took the general progression and greatly expanded on it by letting you pick and choose instead of giving you fixed options.

There is nothing like 3.5/PF1 multiclassing in PF2. The reason being that the very nature of that type of multiclassing is to mix levels of different classes to gain the relevant feature of those levels and not more. But trying to do that with PF2 require a full balance assessment of the system to even try to figure out how proficiency increases gets split. Not to mention that it would permanently block characters from high level feats and spell which are almost requires at those levels.


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Gortle wrote:

Yeah that was because D&D shot themselves in the foot with a terrible edition.

Yeah they have had a torrid time, with all the books they have sold and young and diverse people drawn into the hobby.

I doubt it will be much more than a version 5.25 in its changes ( more like a big errata update) with some mechanical changes and updating of certain words.


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I think its easier to say that PF2 multitasking is better due to the fact that it actually works in a higher percent of cases. I tried dabbling in 5e multitasking and it sucked in most cases because most special class features use your bonus action (so my batman rogue/monk can't actually do flurry sneak attacks) and multitasking destroys your access to stat upgrades/feats.)

There were some extremely powerful PF1 multiclasses (actually the opposite problem as they can catapult you past assumed power levels) but most of them would just be absolutely awful.)

In PF2 even the best/worst choices don't stop you or others being a viable character. And I say you can be far more than a dabbler if you want. A Fighter/Cleric cab spend half their character resources on the Cleric side of things getting access to higher level spells than an equivalent split in PF1.


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Malk_Content wrote:

I think its easier to say that PF2 multitasking is better due to the fact that it actually works in a higher percent of cases. I tried dabbling in 5e multitasking and it sucked in most cases because most special class features use your bonus action (so my batman rogue/monk can't actually do flurry sneak attacks) and multitasking destroys your access to stat upgrades/feats.)

There were some extremely powerful PF1 multiclasses (actually the opposite problem as they can catapult you past assumed power levels) but most of them would just be absolutely awful.)

In PF2 even the best/worst choices don't stop you or others being a viable character. And I say you can be far more than a dabbler if you want. A Fighter/Cleric cab spend half their character resources on the Cleric side of things getting access to higher level spells than an equivalent split in PF1.

If going by variant multiclassing in PF1 the Fighter VMC Cleric wouldn't be that great a cleric. But they would had been good enough for the basic having spent 5 feats on it by level 20.

Part of why going half and half in PF1 can often fail is that typically people do full of 1 and then full of the other. Thus they often miss the benefits of the class until its too late. Often (not always) the best case is best to alternate so as to spread out when you get things, or get it at the right level. Specially when dealing with caster multiclass.

Also yeah PF2 does have it so you can get higher level spells which is nice for martial into caster multiclass.


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Temperans wrote:

Part of why going half and half in PF1 can often fail is that typically people do full of 1 and then full of the other. Thus they often miss the benefits of the class until its too late. Often (not always) the best case is best to alternate so as to spread out when you get things, or get it at the right level. Specially when dealing with caster multiclass.

With caster multiclass in PF1, you never get anything at "right" level. You're always behind, and beyond 1-2 level dips, you'll be just too far behind to be relevant.


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Malk_Content wrote:
I tried dabbling in 5e multitasking and it sucked in most cases…

The great problem with 5E multi classing is that it’s either terrible or overpowered.

One of the core system’s great strengths is the “high floor, low ceiling” design, whereby there’s not a great deal of trap options if you’re a beginner (so it’s hard to build a useless character by mistake) but the various ways of optimising your character are fairly limited (so you don’t end up outshining the rest of the party).

Multiclassing throws that out the window. If you know what you’re doing, there are loads of powerful builds where delaying your feat/stat increase by a level or two is well worth it. If you don’t know what you’re doing…it’s very easy to just end up “meh” at lots of things.


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Steve Geddes wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:
I tried dabbling in 5e multitasking and it sucked in most cases…

The great problem with 5E multi classing is that it’s either terrible or overpowered.

One of the core system’s great strengths is the “high floor, low ceiling” design, whereby there’s not a great deal of trap options if you’re a beginner (so it’s hard to build a useless character by mistake) but the various ways of optimising your character are fairly limited (so you don’t end up outshining the rest of the party).

Multiclassing throws that out the window. If you know what you’re doing, there are loads of powerful builds where delaying your feat/stat increase by a level or two is well worth it. If you don’t know what you’re doing…it’s very easy to just end up “meh” at lots of things.

Sorcladin is one of most zomgbbqwtf builds in 5e. It's pretty much the same as with PF1 - if you know what you're doing you can devastate the landscape and leave the other people at the table wondering what's the point of living, if you don't know you just end shooting yourself in the foot for no gain.


thenovalord wrote:
Gortle wrote:

Yeah that was because D&D shot themselves in the foot with a terrible edition.

Yeah they have had a torrid time, with all the books they have sold and young and diverse people drawn into the hobby.

I doubt it will be much more than a version 5.25 in its changes ( more like a big errata update) with some mechanical changes and updating of certain words.

That post referred to the post above it and was about 4th edition. So yeah I stand by that.

5th ed sucks in its own mechanical ways, but the essence of D&D is there and its much simpler that PF2 so it works for the mass market.


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Totally Not Gorbacz wrote:
Temperans wrote:

Part of why going half and half in PF1 can often fail is that typically people do full of 1 and then full of the other. Thus they often miss the benefits of the class until its too late. Often (not always) the best case is best to alternate so as to spread out when you get things, or get it at the right level. Specially when dealing with caster multiclass.

With caster multiclass in PF1, you never get anything at "right" level. You're always behind, and beyond 1-2 level dips, you'll be just too far behind to be relevant.

With 50/50 caster multiclass you become a "1/2 caster" with 3/4 BAB. Which is pretty close to the 2/3 caster classes. You don't get the features like Magus, but you still get full access to the normal martial feats. Its more a matter of right expectation than "oh this is bad", because low level spells in PF1 are not at all bad.

Liberty's Edge

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Temperans wrote:
Totally Not Gorbacz wrote:
Temperans wrote:

Part of why going half and half in PF1 can often fail is that typically people do full of 1 and then full of the other. Thus they often miss the benefits of the class until its too late. Often (not always) the best case is best to alternate so as to spread out when you get things, or get it at the right level. Specially when dealing with caster multiclass.

With caster multiclass in PF1, you never get anything at "right" level. You're always behind, and beyond 1-2 level dips, you'll be just too far behind to be relevant.
With 50/50 caster multiclass you become a "1/2 caster" with 3/4 BAB. Which is pretty close to the 2/3 caster classes. You don't get the features like Magus, but you still get full access to the normal martial feats. Its more a matter of right expectation than "oh this is bad", because low level spells in PF1 are not at all bad.

One could probably make it work if you picked spells that avoided DCs, but there's a reason that Mystic Theurge is considered a painful and difficult build to play until you get to higher levels. A 50:50 multiclass of 9th-level casters in PF1 at 7th level would lead you to having two spell lists but only 2nd level spells - compared to the 4th level spells you'd have gotten if you just picked a single class. I don't think there's anything close to a compelling argument that having access to both Cure Moderate Wounds and Flaming Sphere is equal in power to Bestow Curse and Black Tentacles (with the corresponding +2 to the DC from being higher level).

It also doesn't compare particularly favourably to being a 7th-level bard or magus, where you'd both have higher spell levels, access to better spells in those spell levels (e.g. heroism as a 2nd for a bard), and other class features (e.g. spell combat or inspire courage).

Grand Lodge

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WotC and Paizo seem to have settled on their nitch. D&D is a fast-playing simplified system that lets the players focus almost entirely on the story and lean much heavier on GM adjudication. PF is a very crunchy system that supports players who want to deep-design their characters. Neither is better or worse—they are just different. The main tangible difference between the games is D&D's brand identity that will always win out, unles/until WotC makes an incredibly bad decision (like 4E) that alienates the community.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I do think there will be more character options and rules variants in 5.5. How much it leans into this depends on how people respond in the survey.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Malk_Content wrote:

I think its easier to say that PF2 multitasking is better due to the fact that it actually works in a higher percent of cases. I tried dabbling in 5e multitasking and it sucked in most cases because most special class features use your bonus action (so my batman rogue/monk can't actually do flurry sneak attacks) and multitasking destroys your access to stat upgrades/feats.)

There were some extremely powerful PF1 multiclasses (actually the opposite problem as they can catapult you past assumed power levels) but most of them would just be absolutely awful.)

In PF2 even the best/worst choices don't stop you or others being a viable character. And I say you can be far more than a dabbler if you want. A Fighter/Cleric cab spend half their character resources on the Cleric side of things getting access to higher level spells than an equivalent split in PF1.

This right here, 5e and 3.5 multiclassing is consistently too strong or too weak because of the way it screws with core progression, but PF2e multiclassing is just right since even if its not adding that much power to you, your core progression still keeps you viable, so you can just piss all the feats away if you really want to.

Also because of the way action economy works, what you use and when is a big part of your flavor-- if you Lay on Hands every combat as a Fighter with Blessed One/Champion, you're going to feel a lot more like a Champion than if you take the archetype but only really use your fighter feats. The key is making sure your base class helps you use the things you're picking up-- a Fighter with Monk Archetype (or Martial Artist) is going to feel way less like a dabbler because their 'rapidly ascending proficiency' supports smacking someone in the face with Martial Arts stances, a Barbarians rage supports it in the same way.


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The-Magic-Sword wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:

I think its easier to say that PF2 multitasking is better due to the fact that it actually works in a higher percent of cases. I tried dabbling in 5e multitasking and it sucked in most cases because most special class features use your bonus action (so my batman rogue/monk can't actually do flurry sneak attacks) and multitasking destroys your access to stat upgrades/feats.)

There were some extremely powerful PF1 multiclasses (actually the opposite problem as they can catapult you past assumed power levels) but most of them would just be absolutely awful.)

In PF2 even the best/worst choices don't stop you or others being a viable character. And I say you can be far more than a dabbler if you want. A Fighter/Cleric cab spend half their character resources on the Cleric side of things getting access to higher level spells than an equivalent split in PF1.

This right here, 5e and 3.5 multiclassing is consistently too strong or too weak because of the way it screws with core progression, but PF2e multiclassing is just right since even if its not adding that much power to you, your core progression still keeps you viable, so you can just piss all the feats away if you really want to.

Also because of the way action economy works, what you use and when is a big part of your flavor-- if you Lay on Hands every combat as a Fighter with Blessed One/Champion, you're going to feel a lot more like a Champion than if you take the archetype but only really use your fighter feats. The key is making sure your base class helps you use the things you're picking up-- a Fighter with Monk Archetype (or Martial Artist) is going to feel way less like a dabbler because their 'rapidly ascending proficiency' supports smacking someone in the face with Martial Arts stances, a Barbarians rage supports it in the same way.

Which in a way is the problem with PF2 archetypes. While it is true that it's harder to be incredibly bad, it is only a few classes that can really benefit from multiclassing, specially certain multiclass (Most of the archetypes on a caster).

Fighter can easily make use of all archetypes that dont have super specific caster requirements. But a Wizard would be hard press to make good use of any. All due to the way the proficiency works.

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