I would like to see more martial classes with non-STR stats to damage


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What the title says. MADness is a real problem for some of the classes, both existing, like Swashbuckler, and future, like Thaumaturge. In a very controlled manner, I think that allowing other stats to be used for damage calculations would not only be fine, but would be both flavorful and a good way to make characters less reliant on a 5th stat they will have a very hard time increasing.

While I still think Swashbuckler is one of the most interesting classes we have ever gotten, Every time I try to build a non-Gymnast Swashbuckler (which is imo the least interesting of them all) I get a little bit sad trying to balance everything but INT. Getting to choose between STR and CHA to damage while in panache wouldn't have broken anything and it would make the character building process and playing the early levels much, much better.

In cases like the Thaumaturge, I think getting a conditioned CHA to damage would help a lot too. MADness is a pain to deal with and wanting so many ability scores makes that choosing the remaining ability score, INT in the case of these 2 classes, almost impossible regardless of how you picture your character.

I would like to see the MADness of some classes adressed. I think the boat has sailed for the Swashbuckler, but the Thaumaturge and some other potential classes we might get in the future are still in time of being designed around being a little bit less MAD.


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I haven't really bothered to bump Str much on any of my swashbucklers. The difference between 14 str and 18 str is just 2 damage. This isn't like PF1 where we're adding huge static modifiers, at the same time PF2 is extremely conservative when it comes to "stat substitutions."

I suspect a 10 str swashbuckler or finesse monk is totally playable, so I'm not sure there's a good reason for this.

So you're probably more likely to see something like "add static damage when in rage, panache, etc." than any stat substutions.


I'm playing a 10 Str swashbuckler. I'm not the primary damage of the group, but Dual Finisher and the like is solid multi-target, and that's fine enough for me.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:

I haven't really bothered to bump Str much on any of my swashbucklers. The difference between 14 str and 18 str is just 2 damage. This isn't like PF1 where we're adding huge static modifiers, at the same time PF2 is extremely conservative when it comes to "stat substitutions."

I suspect a 10 str swashbuckler or finesse monk is totally playable, so I'm not sure there's a good reason for this.

So you're probably more likely to see something like "add static damage when in rage, panache, etc." than any stat substutions.

It only matters from level 1 to 10 imo, but it would make the earlier levels feel much better.

In 1e you could grab 1 level of a class just for a stat substitution and I agree that was a bad thing but it would be as easy as making it so those features can't be snatched away, like Thief Rogue's DEX to damage.


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Swashbucklers precise strike feature is plenty of bonus damage to work with. Your non-finisher strikes are pretty similar in damage to other martials because of it.

Dataphiles

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Precise strike bonus damage really isn’t that much at low levels, which is where the stat to damage issues are really prevalent. +4 damage from strength is huge at level 1-3, by level 8 it’s decent and by level 16 the +5-6 can be done without.

But at level 1-3 when you’re dealing half [i]or less[/less] the damage of your str based friends it feels a little bad.

Giving a different stat (even half stat) to damage should remedy that and isn’t really going to break anything. Strength can already do pretty much everything dex can do, with bulwark subbing for most ref saves, so the choice is mostly between whether you want athletics or dex skills.


Exocist wrote:

Precise strike bonus damage really isn’t that much at low levels, which is where the stat to damage issues are really prevalent. +4 damage from strength is huge at level 1-3, by level 8 it’s decent and by level 16 the +5-6 can be done without.

But at level 1-3 when you’re dealing half [i]or less[/less] the damage of your str based friends it feels a little bad.

Giving a different stat (even half stat) to damage should remedy that and isn’t really going to break anything. Strength can already do pretty much everything dex can do, with bulwark subbing for most ref saves, so the choice is mostly between whether you want athletics or dex skills.

It wouldn't be half or less, it would be half or more, except for barbarians. It's always at least 2. And even if you start at 10 strength, you're matching strength characters by 5th level in bonus damage.


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I don't think it is required. I'd be opposed to it.

It was a problem with PF1 you could create builds where everything rested on the one attribute which you would then boost to ridiculous levels.
There is already plently of extra damage available to rogues /rangers /swashbucklers /investigators anyway so I'm not really seeing the point. I'd rather leave the value and flavour differences in Strength, and have the attributes mean something. All thoses classses work, just in different ways. Which is how it should be.


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Roquepo wrote:
I would like to see more martial classes with non-STR stats to damage

That's what killed 4th edition though.

Dataphiles

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aobst128 wrote:
Exocist wrote:

Precise strike bonus damage really isn’t that much at low levels, which is where the stat to damage issues are really prevalent. +4 damage from strength is huge at level 1-3, by level 8 it’s decent and by level 16 the +5-6 can be done without.

But at level 1-3 when you’re dealing half or less the damage of your str based friends it feels a little bad.

Giving a different stat (even half stat) to damage should remedy that and isn’t really going to break anything. Strength can already do pretty much everything dex can do, with bulwark subbing for most ref saves, so the choice is mostly between whether you want athletics or dex skills.

It wouldn't be half or less, it would be half or more, except for barbarians. It's always at least 2. And even if you start at 10 strength, you're matching strength characters by 5th level in bonus damage.

Barbarian and other (non champ/monk) martials have equivalent damage boosters. When precise strike is your damage booster that’s pretty bad when it leaves you that far behind. But lets see

Longsword fighter/champ is doing 1d8+4 (8.5), greatsword 1d12+4 (10.5)

Rapier swash is doing 1d6+2 (5.5) and ECB 1d8+2 (7.5)

You’re losing a lot of damage relative to a damn champion which isn’t a primary damage class, on a primary damage class. The fighter also has +2 to hit over you if you want to compare to a primary damage class, so yes you will be doing half or less their damage.

Precise Strike flat damage is not a good damage boosting feature. It’s certainly not enough to make up for the lack of stat to damage.

Dataphiles

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Ravingdork wrote:
Roquepo wrote:
I would like to see more martial classes with non-STR stats to damage
That's what killed 4th edition though.

I thought rolling d20s was what killed 4e though?


Exocist wrote:
aobst128 wrote:
Exocist wrote:

Precise strike bonus damage really isn’t that much at low levels, which is where the stat to damage issues are really prevalent. +4 damage from strength is huge at level 1-3, by level 8 it’s decent and by level 16 the +5-6 can be done without.

But at level 1-3 when you’re dealing half or less the damage of your str based friends it feels a little bad.

Giving a different stat (even half stat) to damage should remedy that and isn’t really going to break anything. Strength can already do pretty much everything dex can do, with bulwark subbing for most ref saves, so the choice is mostly between whether you want athletics or dex skills.

It wouldn't be half or less, it would be half or more, except for barbarians. It's always at least 2. And even if you start at 10 strength, you're matching strength characters by 5th level in bonus damage.

Barbarian and other (non champ/monk) martials have equivalent damage boosters. When precise strike is your damage booster that’s pretty bad when it leaves you that far behind. But lets see

Longsword fighter/champ is doing 1d8+4 (8.5), greatsword 1d12+4 (10.5)

Rapier swash is doing 1d6+2 (5.5) and ECB 1d8+2 (7.5)

You’re losing a lot of damage relative to a damn champion which isn’t a primary damage class, on a primary damage class. The fighter also has +2 to hit over you if you want to compare to a primary damage class, so yes you will be doing half or less their damage.

Precise Strike flat damage is not a good damage boosting feature. It’s certainly not enough to make up for the lack of stat to damage.

It's half or more bonus damage. Not total damage. Swashbucklers total damage is gonna have to be added with finishers. The class does not need any extra damage. It already has it baked in


As a case for the thaumaturge, a lot has to change already, so I'm not sure if charisma to damage will be appropriate, but I wouldn't be apposed. Just has to fit right.

Dataphiles

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
aobst128 wrote:
Exocist wrote:
aobst128 wrote:
Exocist wrote:

Precise strike bonus damage really isn’t that much at low levels, which is where the stat to damage issues are really prevalent. +4 damage from strength is huge at level 1-3, by level 8 it’s decent and by level 16 the +5-6 can be done without.

But at level 1-3 when you’re dealing half or less the damage of your str based friends it feels a little bad.

Giving a different stat (even half stat) to damage should remedy that and isn’t really going to break anything. Strength can already do pretty much everything dex can do, with bulwark subbing for most ref saves, so the choice is mostly between whether you want athletics or dex skills.

It wouldn't be half or less, it would be half or more, except for barbarians. It's always at least 2. And even if you start at 10 strength, you're matching strength characters by 5th level in bonus damage.

Barbarian and other (non champ/monk) martials have equivalent damage boosters. When precise strike is your damage booster that’s pretty bad when it leaves you that far behind. But lets see

Longsword fighter/champ is doing 1d8+4 (8.5), greatsword 1d12+4 (10.5)

Rapier swash is doing 1d6+2 (5.5) and ECB 1d8+2 (7.5)

You’re losing a lot of damage relative to a damn champion which isn’t a primary damage class, on a primary damage class. The fighter also has +2 to hit over you if you want to compare to a primary damage class, so yes you will be doing half or less their damage.

Precise Strike flat damage is not a good damage boosting feature. It’s certainly not enough to make up for the lack of stat to damage.

It's half or more bonus damage. Not total damage. Swashbucklers total damage is gonna have to be added with finishers. The class does not need any extra damage. It already has it baked in

I mean yes but that’s part of the problem. The class should have an actual decision point of whether to remain in panache or use a finisher, but currently the panache benefits are so weak relative to finisher that you just finisher every turn.

And even finishers aren’t really a lot of extra damage early relative to how hard it is to get panache in those early levels when skill scaling hasn’t kicked in. A swash with no str is doing 1d8+2d6 (11.5) with an ECB or 3d6 (10.5) with a rapier, for effectively two actions (although there is some value to the panache gaining action, it also has a non insignificant fail chance at low levels). Giving it dex (in place of strength if it chooses) or half dex to damage wouldn’t break anything.


Exocist wrote:
aobst128 wrote:
Exocist wrote:
aobst128 wrote:
Exocist wrote:

Precise strike bonus damage really isn’t that much at low levels, which is where the stat to damage issues are really prevalent. +4 damage from strength is huge at level 1-3, by level 8 it’s decent and by level 16 the +5-6 can be done without.

But at level 1-3 when you’re dealing half or less the damage of your str based friends it feels a little bad.

Giving a different stat (even half stat) to damage should remedy that and isn’t really going to break anything. Strength can already do pretty much everything dex can do, with bulwark subbing for most ref saves, so the choice is mostly between whether you want athletics or dex skills.

It wouldn't be half or less, it would be half or more, except for barbarians. It's always at least 2. And even if you start at 10 strength, you're matching strength characters by 5th level in bonus damage.

Barbarian and other (non champ/monk) martials have equivalent damage boosters. When precise strike is your damage booster that’s pretty bad when it leaves you that far behind. But lets see

Longsword fighter/champ is doing 1d8+4 (8.5), greatsword 1d12+4 (10.5)

Rapier swash is doing 1d6+2 (5.5) and ECB 1d8+2 (7.5)

You’re losing a lot of damage relative to a damn champion which isn’t a primary damage class, on a primary damage class. The fighter also has +2 to hit over you if you want to compare to a primary damage class, so yes you will be doing half or less their damage.

Precise Strike flat damage is not a good damage boosting feature. It’s certainly not enough to make up for the lack of stat to damage.

It's half or more bonus damage. Not total damage. Swashbucklers total damage is gonna have to be added with finishers. The class does not need any extra damage. It already has it baked in
I mean yes but that’s part of the problem. The class should have an actual decision point of whether to remain in panache or use a...

Whether or not they should have an option to keep their panache is a matter of opinion, plus, you do have a choice, it's just most of the time the better choice is finishers. It's the class's action pattern. Gymnasts definitely get the best panache benefits though with maneuvers and flamboyant athlete. I guess of you had to compare it to another precision based class, the thief rogue adds dex to damage instead of strength, but you would have to justify a subclass for swashbuckler that does the same thing but nothing else like the thief.


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I feel like some of what we're arguing for here is "for strength not to matter" which I think is a bad thing. The Swashbuckler seems deliberately designed for "you will want some strength" since all of the swashbuckler archetypes in media are people who will swing from chandeliers and climb ropes and aren't weedy noodle-armed weaklings.

If strength wasn't relevant to melee damage for everybody, all the stat really does is "athletics" and "carrying capacity". Generally the choice between "strength" or "dexterity" is "offense" or "defense" which is reasonable tradeoff.

Removing relevance from any of the three stats that do not add to saves seems questionable to me.

Dataphiles

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PossibleCabbage wrote:

I feel like some of what we're arguing for here is "for strength not to matter" which I think is a bad thing. The Swashbuckler seems deliberately designed for "you will want some strength" since all of the swashbuckler archetypes in media are people who will swing from chandeliers and climb ropes and aren't weedy noodle-armed weaklings.

If strength wasn't relevant to melee damage for everybody, all the stat really does is "athletics" and "carrying capacity". Generally the choice between "strength" or "dexterity" is "offense" or "defense" which is reasonable tradeoff.

Removing relevance from any of the three stats that do not add to saves seems questionable to me.

The thing is that strength is already an irrelevant stat for them… depending on what level you’re at. A 10 str, 18 dex monk, fighter, swash or champion will feel the pain (even completely useless as my dex champ player in plaguestone learned the hard way - hitting for 3.5 damage is just not good) at levels 1-7ish… but past there you don’t really need it anymore because scaling kicks in and suddenly your base damage is 3d6+2 instead of 1d6+0, so the addition of +4 is comparatively a lot less.

Plus, the charisma based styles can’t really afford to invest in str because they need con/wis/dex/cha. Even if they did choose to invest in strength, it’s ultimately something that descales to become irrelevant as noted above, whereas con/wis (which is what they would be dumping for str) only becomes more relevant. Such a concept as “late game scaling” shouldn’t really exist in tabletops.

Make the effect of strength at least consistent if you’re going to make it “the stat that gives damage”, but personally I think the distinction between dex and str has already eroded to nearly nothing by this point and we’d be better off switching to a four stat system. All it does by now is add some difficulty to certain characters at low levels.


You've got options to mitigate lower wisdom. Charmed life and swaggering initiative. And again, you only need 12 strength to match the bonus damage from strength martials. As for champions, yeah dex kinda stinks for them, but they're mostly a defender class anyways and will add plenty of value to a party as long as they're using their reaction.

Dataphiles

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aobst128 wrote:
You've got options to mitigate lower wisdom. Charmed life and swaggering initiative. And again, you only need 12 strength to match the bonus damage from strength martials. As for champions, yeah dex kinda stinks for them, but they're mostly a defender class anyways and will add plenty of value to a party as long as they're using their reaction.

Those options have a very tangible cost in class feats and action economy, and help both high wis (due to resolve, also mitigated CF chance because monster DCs) and low wis (mitigated CF chance) equally. You don't want to be CFing except on a 1. It's not really possible, but you want to get that number as close to 1 as possible, because the last thing you want is CF-> Hero Point CF and you're immediately dead or worse at high levels.

And yes, 12 strength does match the damage bonus from str martials - but being a str martial with no booster is generally not very good. If you're making panache attacks with 12 str, that's what you are - a damage martial with no booster active. Champions and Monks aren't damage classes, they have a lot of durability (and eco for monks) instead. Swashbuckler's primary purpose is to do damage, so making attacks for 2d6+4 or 2d8+4 even if it's equivalent to what the champion or monk is putting out (still approximately 20% worse than fighter, barbarian, ranger, rogue) is just not very good. And when you're talking finishers, 12 strength is wasted points - the difference between doing 5d6 and 5d6+1 is basically nothing.


Exocist wrote:
aobst128 wrote:
You've got options to mitigate lower wisdom. Charmed life and swaggering initiative. And again, you only need 12 strength to match the bonus damage from strength martials. As for champions, yeah dex kinda stinks for them, but they're mostly a defender class anyways and will add plenty of value to a party as long as they're using their reaction.

Those options have a very tangible cost in class feats and action economy, and help both high wis (due to resolve, also mitigated CF chance because monster DCs) and low wis (mitigated CF chance) equally. You don't want to be CFing except on a 1. It's not really possible, but you want to get that number as close to 1 as possible, because the last thing you want is CF-> Hero Point CF and you're immediately dead or worse at high levels.

And yes, 12 strength does match the damage bonus from str martials - but being a str martial with no booster is generally not very good. If you're making panache attacks with 12 str, that's what you are - a damage martial with no booster active. Champions and Monks aren't damage classes, they have a lot of durability (and eco for monks) instead. Swashbuckler's primary purpose is to do damage, so making attacks for 2d6+4 or 2d8+4 even if it's equivalent to what the champion or monk is putting out (still approximately 20% worse than fighter, barbarian, ranger, rogue) is just not very good. And when you're talking finishers, 12 strength is wasted points - the difference between doing 5d6 and 5d6+1 is basically nothing.

Good thing you're not always making standard strike then. I mean, it's a weird thing to complain about. It's like saying monks are bad with standard strikes, which they are compared to FOB. Yes, you're going to do better with finishers like any class with a damage gimmick. Rogues are pretty bad when not sneak attacking and rangers are bad when not hitting their hunted prey and barbarians are bad when not raging. You have to accept that panache is to be used strategically like other class features.


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The stat distributions are generous enough that you can justify 12-14 in str and/or dex to get some archetypes alone.
Even 12 dex for a champion helps against clumsy and for non aoe reflex saves.


I guess the Problem ist that while finishern so 3.5 more damage then a Sneak Attack
They either have to Deal with a Bad Attack or Lock you out of other attacks (and therefore maneuvers) while a rogue can just Hit again
2 Sneak attacks are Plains better then a finisher (+a regular Strike)


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Realistically (or verisimilitude-wise, or whatever that means), all non-firearm weapons and unarmed strikes should have been DEX to hit and STR to damage.
Then couple that assumption with some martial (non-multi)class features which let you use STR to hit only for melee and thrown attacks if you so desire.

Anyway, despite the default Initiative assumed as Perception(WIS) in PF2, DEX is still a STRonger stat compared to STR, so I see no harm in stacking some bonuses for the latter.


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I think part of the issue people are having with the Swashbuckler specifically is that it isn't a DPR class, it's a burst class like the Magus. It's round to round damage is low, but it spends 1 action in the right circumstance and suddenly 1/4th-1/5th of the boss's health went away, AND HE CAN DO IT AGAIN!

As to "replacement damage stat" argument, we have the Thief Rogue with Dex, and every Investigator with Int, I would like to see some class with Con to damage, but I'd leave the mental stats out of it unless it's explicitly magical like Arcane Cascade (which doesn't queue off Int, but if it did it would make sense). And even then you'd need it to be a Magic Knight class like Magus, so eehhhh???
I will add that 5e has all sorts of "replace STR for X on damage rolls" and it's... not pretty in execution, it's one of the (many) reasons fights are so imbalanced in that system is damage rolls are absolutely inconsistent on the PC's side depending on whether or not someone picked those options or not, so I vote against that personally.


In addition to all that's been said before (DEX bringing very solid defense/saves, a wider variety of skills, STR being historically relegated to athletics/packmule potential, the logic of STR being what makes hits hurt), 2e is also one of the most generous systems out there with stat increases, to the point that bumping STR as a secondary stat for a bit of extra oomph (or added damage to propulsive weapons) isn't really that unfeasible unless you're also going for TWO high mental stats alongside your main DEX for accuracy and CON for survivability.

Alongside "damage equalizers" such as Sneak Attack, Finishers and Devise a Stratagem, it's hard to argue that the stats aren't mostly balanced between themselves, although WIS may be just a single step above the rest in sheer usefulness.


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Exocist wrote:
Swashbuckler's primary purpose is to do damage. . .

That's debatable. At our table, Swashbucklers have generally been either primary debuffers (penalty to Will saves, flat-footed, frightened, immobilized, etc) with decent damage, or a fairly even blend of purpose. None have been primary damage dealers.

Dataphiles

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Schreckstoff wrote:

The stat distributions are generous enough that you can justify 12-14 in str and/or dex to get some archetypes alone.

Even 12 dex for a champion helps against clumsy and for non aoe reflex saves.

12 dex doesn’t do anything against clumsy. It isn’t -dex, it’s just a penalty to AC. It affects 12 and 10 dex equally.

As for ref saves, Swallow Whole and Engulf are both damage so bulwark applies. Heck even Trip might apply because it technically does damage (on a crit) though no one is insane enough to rule that. Very few ref saves in the game are non damage.


nick1wasd wrote:
As to "replacement damage stat" argument, we have the Thief Rogue with Dex, and every Investigator with Int...

These two are not the same. Thieves add Dex mod. to all damage rolls with finesse weapons.

Investigators never add Int mod. to damage. Rather, when an Investigator substitutes their Int mod. to strike, s/he may apply their Strategic Strike precision dice to the damage.

Dataphiles

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Pixel Popper wrote:
Exocist wrote:
Swashbuckler's primary purpose is to do damage. . .
That's debatable. At our table, Swashbucklers have generally been either primary debuffers (penalty to Will saves, flat-footed, frightened, immobilized, etc) with decent damage, or a fairly even blend of purpose. None have been primary damage dealers.

These are options available to every charisma or strength based character, not swashbuckler exclusive and certainly swashbuckler isn’t even that good at them (as they will generally be -1 unless they want to stay in panache) unless they have Dering-Do (which, while amazing for gymnasts who want to focus on grapple/trip, isn’t very good).

The swashbuckler chassis adds damage through finishers to those skill checks. It doesn’t make contribution through skill checks your primary method of engaging with combat unlike say, summoner, who gets boosted action economy to make those skill checks more efficient.


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One of my players went through the entirety of Age of Ashes as a low-strength Swashbuckler, and he contributed plenty well; I'm not really swayed by this argument and I'm very swayed by the fact that easy access to Dex-to-damage was absolutely balance crushing in 1e.

I feel like Dex-to-damage access should stay right where it is: A very rare class feature limited only to the subclasses most strongly themed around it. Currently it's in the same rarity category as getting Legendary attack rolls, and I think that's perfect.

I wouldn't cry to see another class get it, but it would need to be a class for which the thematic tie is as strong as it is for Dex rogues, and I'm not sure at the moment what that class is. Certainly not Swashbuckler. And definitely definitely not Thaumaturge getting Cha to damage; I much prefer Thaumaturge's current ability to get a pile of free bonus damage to make up for their MADness instead.


Gortle wrote:
It was a problem with PF1 you could create builds where everything rested on the one attribute which you would then boost to ridiculous levels.
This was a problem in 1E because you could grab 1 level from another class to use that ability score while focusing on another class completely and also because 1e math was not bounded at all. They made it so Ranger's Edge or Barbarian full rage benefits can't be used at all unless you are a Ranger or Barbarian. Can't see how stat substitution could lead to problems as long as they are linked to certain classes.
nick1wasd wrote:
I think part of the issue people are having with the Swashbuckler specifically is that it isn't a DPR class, it's a burst class like the Magus. It's round to round damage is low, but it spends 1 action in the right circumstance and suddenly 1/4th-1/5th of the boss's health went away, AND HE CAN DO IT AGAIN!
Saying that the Swashbuckler is not a damage oriented class because they are good at support is like saying that Ranger is not a damage class because Warden's Boon/Shared Prey is a really good option. They can be both damage classes AND support classes. Just not as damage oriented as a Fighter or Barbarian.
MaxAstro wrote:
I feel like Dex-to-damage access should stay right where it is: A very rare class feature limited only to the subclasses most strongly themed around it. Currently it's in the same rarity category as getting Legendary attack rolls, and I think that's perfect.

Dex to damage is not what I'm advocating for at all, putting your accuracy, damage and defense on the same basket is dangerous, I agree, but I was talking about things like CHA or INT to damage when it fits.


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roquepo wrote:
nick1wasd wrote:
I think part of the issue people are having with the Swashbuckler specifically is that it isn't a DPR class, it's a burst class like the Magus. It's round to round damage is low, but it spends 1 action in the right circumstance and suddenly 1/4th-1/5th of the boss's health went away, AND HE CAN DO IT AGAIN!
Saying that the Swashbuckler is not a damage oriented class because they are good at support is like saying that Ranger is not a damage class because Warden's Boon/Shared Prey is a really good option. They can be both damage classes AND support classes.

I'm not saying it's not damage oriented, I'm saying it's not DPR. Damage PER ROUND, as in round 1 to round 2 to round 3 the damage is low. They're a BURST class, like Black Mages in Fire Emblem or Assassins in FF14, they do itty bitty chip damage until an opening happens and then BLAMO! No more health for you. If you want DPR, you want a flurry ranger or Fighter, because round to round, they have a high average output, but if you want to see the boss explode because a single crit did 50-60 damage at level 4? (happened at my table) You want a Swashbuckler or Gunslinger who waits for the opening and exploits the Asmodeus out of it.

Pixel Popper wrote:
nick1wasd wrote:
As to "replacement damage stat" argument, we have the Thief Rogue with Dex, and every Investigator with Int...

These two are not the same. Thieves add Dex mod. to all damage rolls with finesse weapons.

Investigators never add Int mod. to damage. Rather, when an Investigator substitutes their Int mod. to strike, s/he may apply their Strategic Strike precision dice to the damage.

Forgot that's how it worked, my bad! I thought you got int to atk roll AND damage like the 5e warlock and cha, not int to roll and effectively sneak attack on damage. Thanks for pointing that out


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nick1wasd wrote:
I'm not saying it's not damage oriented, I'm saying it's not DPR. Damage PER ROUND, as in round 1 to round 2 to round 3 the damage is low. They're a BURST class, like Black Mages in Fire Emblem or Assassins in FF14, they do itty bitty chip damage until an opening happens and then BLAMO! No more health for you. If you want DPR, you want a flurry ranger or Fighter, because round to round, they have a high average output, but if you want to see the boss explode because a single crit did 50-60 damage at level 4? (happened at my table) You want a Swashbuckler or Gunslinger who waits for the opening and exploits the Asmodeus out of it.

Having a burst turn and a weaker damage turn makes you have a DPR still. It doesn't matter how you deal the damage to know how much damage you do (and yes, I'm aware that burst damage benefits the most from big temporary buffs and debuffs, but when you get to the point of having those available like big Aid mods or Synesthesia, the stat problem isn't a problem anymore). I just want these classes to not suffer a subpar early level experience due to them needing too many different stats and using non-STR stats to damage is one of the cleaner ways to achive this without breaking anything.


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I think stat to attack rolls is more important than dex to damage or w/e. Non str classes usually have theme appropriate damage enhancers that I find more interesting than use an alternate stat to damage, but classes like alchemist and inventor have a -1 to hit compared to others of theirnsame proficiency because thematically, it makes sense for them to have int as their KAS, but mechanically, without a substitution, they are just flat out worse at hitting things


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I like strength being a vital stat for damage levels 1-5. After 4+ years of 5e it's great to see that strength isn't a complete dump stat. If you want beefier hits, you need strength. I don't think that should go away. My players tiger stance monk in AoA had no problem getting a 16 in strength under his 18 Dex. His defences suffered but that's the trade he made. I'm all about strength remaining the early lvl avenue to additional damage.


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WWHsmackdown wrote:
I like strength being a vital stat for damage levels 1-5. After 4+ years of 5e it's great to see that strength isn't a complete dump stat. If you want beefier hits, you need strength. I don't think that should go away. My players tiger stance monk in AoA had no problem getting a 16 in strength under his 18 Dex. His defences suffered but that's the trade he made. I'm all about strength remaining the early lvl avenue to additional damage.

The difference is that a Monk can afford to upgrade it STR way more than a CHA swashbuckler. A monk only "needs" WIS as their only mental stat, whereas a braggart Swashbuckler needs both WIS and CHA. I want STR to remain the damage stat for most classes, but there are some clear cases where it is doing more harm than good.

Right now, If I want to play a clever Fencer Swashbuckler I have to give up 2 Important stats (either CON, WIS or STR). That's painful and I don't want that to happen to more classes. Making the classes less MAD would increase the amount of choices, not decrease them.


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roquepo wrote:
WWHsmackdown wrote:
I like strength being a vital stat for damage levels 1-5. After 4+ years of 5e it's great to see that strength isn't a complete dump stat. If you want beefier hits, you need strength. I don't think that should go away. My players tiger stance monk in AoA had no problem getting a 16 in strength under his 18 Dex. His defences suffered but that's the trade he made. I'm all about strength remaining the early lvl avenue to additional damage.

The difference is that a Monk can afford to upgrade it STR way more than a CHA swashbuckler. A monk only "needs" WIS as their only mental stat, whereas a braggart Swashbuckler needs both WIS and CHA. I want STR to remain the damage stat for most classes, but there are some clear cases where it is doing more harm than good.

Right now, If I want to play a clever Fencer Swashbuckler I have to give up 2 Important stats (either CON, WIS or STR). That's painful and I don't want that to happen to more classes. Making the classes less MAD would increase the amount of choices, not decrease them.

I'm agreeing with everyone else that the charisma for face skills & finisher damage is more important to the character than the 3 static damage the monk has. Your swashbuckler can interact with the social pillar of the game AND still has boosted damage from it's class mechanic. That's not a bad setup. Simple martials having a leg up in simple standard attack dpr isn't a bad thing.


WWHsmackdown wrote:
roquepo wrote:
WWHsmackdown wrote:
I like strength being a vital stat for damage levels 1-5. After 4+ years of 5e it's great to see that strength isn't a complete dump stat. If you want beefier hits, you need strength. I don't think that should go away. My players tiger stance monk in AoA had no problem getting a 16 in strength under his 18 Dex. His defences suffered but that's the trade he made. I'm all about strength remaining the early lvl avenue to additional damage.

The difference is that a Monk can afford to upgrade it STR way more than a CHA swashbuckler. A monk only "needs" WIS as their only mental stat, whereas a braggart Swashbuckler needs both WIS and CHA. I want STR to remain the damage stat for most classes, but there are some clear cases where it is doing more harm than good.

Right now, If I want to play a clever Fencer Swashbuckler I have to give up 2 Important stats (either CON, WIS or STR). That's painful and I don't want that to happen to more classes. Making the classes less MAD would increase the amount of choices, not decrease them.

I'm agreeing with everyone else that the charisma for face skills & finisher damage is more important to the character than the 3 static damage the monk has. Your swashbuckler can interact with the social pillar of the game AND still has boosted damage from it's class mechanic. That's not a bad setup. Simple martials having a leg up in simple standard attack dpr isn't a bad thing.

It isn't a bad thing... Once you gain some levels. a 10 STR Swash attacks early on feel really bad. 1d6+2 damage once you have succeeded a check and plain 1d6 if not is bad. Even the finisher damage will be less damage than a Rogue sneak attacking (who can afford STR way more and even has the choice of DEX to damage or being full STR based)


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I wouldn't want the charisma swash to have face skills AND a damage bonus equitable to a strength investment. Maybe a Ruffian rogue is the way to go.


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Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure they don't actually have burst damage and need to do the whole finisher rotation thing just to keep up with other martials swinging twice. It would be nice if swash and similar non-str martial classes had some kind of bonus to make the early game feel better. It's always a little sad to see people come to the realization that they're being carried by the fighter or barbarian or thief rogue because they contribute so little early on.

For stat distribution, I'd disagree that the system is generous with it. If you want to have any chance of not getting blown out by saves, three of your four boosts are forced into dex,con,wis (unless heavy armor) and your fourth goes into your primary ability.

As it is, dex seems to be a dump stat on most non-casters. Sentinel trivializes access for medium armor classes and with the human general training feat at 1, even light armor classes can have scaling heavy armor. No dex means you can easily boost int or cha in a str/con/wis/x setup for non-combat uses. A minor hoop to get the same luxury afforded to heavy armor classes and thief rogue (ignoring str) from the jump.


gesalt wrote:

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure they don't actually have burst damage and need to do the whole finisher rotation thing just to keep up with other martials swinging twice. It would be nice if swash and similar non-str martial classes had some kind of bonus to make the early game feel better. It's always a little sad to see people come to the realization that they're being carried by the fighter or barbarian or thief rogue because they contribute so little early on.

For stat distribution, I'd disagree that the system is generous with it. If you want to have any chance of not getting blown out by saves, three of your four boosts are forced into dex,con,wis (unless heavy armor) and your fourth goes into your primary ability.

As it is, dex seems to be a dump stat on most non-casters. Sentinel trivializes access for medium armor classes and with the human general training feat at 1, even light armor classes can have scaling heavy armor. No dex means you can easily boost int or cha in a str/con/wis/x setup for non-combat uses. A minor hoop to get the same luxury afforded to heavy armor classes and thief rogue (ignoring str) from the jump.

The other martial has to land two attacks. You need to land 1.


Pixel Popper wrote:
nick1wasd wrote:
As to "replacement damage stat" argument, we have the Thief Rogue with Dex, and every Investigator with Int...

These two are not the same. Thieves add Dex mod. to all damage rolls with finesse weapons.

Investigators never add Int mod. to damage. Rather, when an Investigator substitutes their Int mod. to strike, s/he may apply their Strategic Strike precision dice to the damage.

oh really? it says dexterity based AC so I thought overshooting would work.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Swashbuckler DPR is hard to calculate because they get damage on a failure (which helps) but can also screw up getting panache (which hurts.) Plus riposte can pack in extra damage. Worth noting they also get superior mobility and extra skill feats, though, so they are probably closest to monks in functionality rather than fighters or barbarians.

On MAD classes, I've found I can make peace with dumping wisdom on such classes and have a really fun but ill advised characters. Not everyone is willing to suck at perception or will saves though.

Liberty's Edge

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I would like a caster with non-mental stat for casting. I do not think I will ever see it.


WWHsmackdown wrote:
The other martial has to land two attacks. You need to land 1.

let me see if I remember how to do math.

Finisher for 1d6(weapon)+2d6(finisher)+2(14 str) is 12.5 damage or 6.25dpr assuming a base 50% hit rate and 0% crit adjusted to 8dpr because you still do 3.5 on a miss ((12.5+3.5)/2). This assumes you will never fail to regain panache and always use confident finisher.

Champ swings twice for 1d8+4 (8.5) so if we assume 50/25 hit rate that's 4.25+2.125 or 6.375 dpr assuming a glaive or meteor hammer. With a greatsword, it's 1d12+4 (10.5) so 7.875.

Barb swings twice for 1d8+4+4(dragon rage) for 12.5->9.375 dpr and obviously higher with a d10 or d12 weapon.

Fighter swings twice for 1d8+4 but has 60/35 for 8.075 dpr

Again, someone correct me if I'm butchering the math, but it seems like any martial with a damage booster is going to surpass the swashbuckler baseline even if you have a benevolent gm who gives you 100% chance to gain panache.


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The Raven Black wrote:
I would like a caster with non-mental stat for casting. I do not think I will ever see it.

I still miss the con based witch from pf1 that got errata'd into non-existence.


I think by the function of the class, swashbuckler ends up being more support oriented due to the fact that you must use your panache skills to do your damage. Unless you just want to tumble through the whole time. Even though they're not the best at those skills, you make a lot of them through the rounds because you that's how the class works.


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The Raven Black wrote:
I would like a caster with non-mental stat for casting. I do not think I will ever see it.

I'd kill for a con casting blood mage class archetype


gesalt wrote:
WWHsmackdown wrote:
The other martial has to land two attacks. You need to land 1.

let me see if I remember how to do math.

Finisher for 1d6(weapon)+2d6(finisher)+2(14 str) is 12.5 damage or 6.25dpr assuming a base 50% hit rate and 0% crit adjusted to 8dpr because you still do 3.5 on a miss ((12.5+3.5)/2). This assumes you will never fail to regain panache and always use confident finisher.

Champ swings twice for 1d8+4 (8.5) so if we assume 50/25 hit rate that's 4.25+2.125 or 6.375 dpr assuming a glaive or meteor hammer. With a greatsword, it's 1d12+4 (10.5) so 7.875.

Barb swings twice for 1d8+4+4(dragon rage) for 12.5->9.375 dpr and obviously higher with a d10 or d12 weapon.

Fighter swings twice for 1d8+4 but has 60/35 for 8.075 dpr

Again, someone correct me if I'm butchering the math, but it seems like any martial with a damage booster is going to surpass the swashbuckler baseline even if you have a benevolent gm who gives you 100% chance to gain panache.

I think the better comparison would be with a rogue. Rogues also rely on precision damage, are dex based (mostly) and have even more utility than Swashbucklers.

All the comparisons will be made using a shortsword and a stat spread of: STR10 DEX18 CON14 WIS12 INT10 CHA14
Flatfooted is very easy to get, so we will assume the rogue moves into flanking position and that the Swashbuckler Tumbles through into flanking position getting panache every other turn. CA after flanking will give a 45% hit chance and a 5% crit chance

2 actions attacking

Swashbuckler panache turn, First hit: (1d6+2)*0'45 + (1d6+2)*2*0'05 = 3'025 Second hit: 3d6*0'25 + 3d6*2*0'05 + 2d6/2*0'5 = 2'625 + 1'05 + 1'75= 5'425 Total = 8'45 points of damage
Swashbuckler non-panache turn, First hit: 1d6*0'45 + 1d6*2*0'05 = 1'925 Second hit: 1d6*0'25 + 1d6*2*0'05 = 1'225 Total: 3'15 points of damage
Average: 5'8 points of damage

Thief rogue, First hit: (2d6+4)*0'45 + (2d6+4)*2*0'05 = 6'05 Second hit (2d6+4)*0'25 + (2d6+4)*2*0'05 = 3'85 Total: 9'9 points of damage

Scoundrel Rogue, First hit: 2d6*0'45 + 2d6*2*0'05 = 3'85 Second hit 2d6*0'25 + 2d6*2*0'05 = 2'45 Total: 6'3 points of damage

1 action attacking

Swashbuckler panache turn: 3d6*0'45 + 3d6*2*0'05 + 2d6/2*0'5 = 7'525 points of damage
Swashbuckler non-panache turn: 1d6*0'45 + 1d6*2*0'05 = 1'925 points of damage
Average: 4'725 points of damage

Thief rogue, First hit: (2d6+4)*0'45 + (2d6+4)*2*0'05 = 6'05 points of damage

Scoundrel Rogue, First hit: 2d6*0'45 + 2d6*2*0'05 = 3'85 Points of damage

In conclussion, in this situation Swashbuckler is the worse expending 2 actions attacking, with the Thief Rogue doing more damage even than the panache turn Swashbuckler and Swash is just ahead of Scoundrel when expending 1 action attacking. Swashbuckler probably fares better if the AC gets lower than this, though.

Rushed this a little bit so let me know if I have any mistakes.


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The big difference between the Rogue and the Swashbuckler, though, is the Rogue is *much* squishier than the Swashbuckler. The Swashbuckler can be built into one of the tankiest martials besides the monk and the champion.

The whole "I want you to swing at me, because you'll miss and then I get to stab you" thing isn't even available to the Rogue.

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