So in 2E, is it normal to just feel... really weak?


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion

201 to 250 of 456 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | next > last >>

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Temperans wrote:
Except no one is asking to be impossible to hit or always being able to hit.

Hmm... no, I think that there are people who do want that. They just don't often come onto these forums, or state it in exactly those terms.

Claxon wrote:

Speak for yourself!

I much prefer to hit 90% of the time even if it takes just as many rounds/shot to down the enemy.

When I miss an attack I fill bad. Much worse than if my attack connects, but doesn't end them. Now if I have to spend 10 successful attacks to take someone down I'm going to be frustrated too. And I don't expect every attack to hit. But on average I'd like to see 1 successful attack per round

With the way human memory works (by remembering failures much more reliably than successes), having the impression of a successful attack once every round means having an attack with about 80% to 90% probability.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Gortle wrote:


The game has to be unpredictable. Or its no fun and you may as well go diceless and make your life a lot less complex.

Its a big problem with PF1 and Gurps you can just optimise and trivialise a situation with 90%+ confidence.

Speak for yourself, I like the predictability of bring able to say "This particular thing, that I want to invest all my character resources into, I'm so good that I can guarantee it's going to happen in most situations."

While still needing dice to determine what happens elsewhere.

Just because I can predict what my character can do successfully doesn't mean that the story as it unfolds around that is predicted.

Just because my character may be able to hit 100% of the time, doesn't mean I can when the battle alone.

Be like Sun Tzu, hit the enemy where they are weak.

Players optimized for hitting things and dealing damage? Give them problems that can't be solved by hitting things for damage.

Players really good at skills? Throw a problem that skills can't fix, like needing get somewhere only magic can provide.

Players are good at magic, skills, and attacks? Congratulations, you have a well rounded party that diversified to cover the basis of needs and while one party member might be able to handle a task, what about the others? You can harass them and provide a challenge to them. Even though it might be trivial for one party member, they group still has challenges.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Claxon wrote:
Gortle wrote:


The game has to be unpredictable. Or its no fun and you may as well go diceless and make your life a lot less complex.

Its a big problem with PF1 and Gurps you can just optimise and trivialise a situation with 90%+ confidence.

Speak for yourself, I like the predictability of bring able to say "This particular thing, that I want to invest all my character resources into, I'm so good that I can guarantee it's going to happen in most situations."

While still needing dice to determine what happens elsewhere.

Just because I can predict what my character can do successfully doesn't mean that the story as it unfolds around that is predicted.

Just because my character may be able to hit 100% of the time, doesn't mean I can when the battle alone.

Be like Sun Tzu, hit the enemy where they are weak.

Players optimized for hitting things and dealing damage? Give them problems that can't be solved by hitting things for damage.

Players really good at skills? Throw a problem that skills can't fix, like needing get somewhere only magic can provide.

Players are good at magic, skills, and attacks? Congratulations, you have a well rounded party that diversified to cover the basis of needs and while one party member might be able to handle a task, what about the others? You can harass them and provide a challenge to them. Even though it might be trivial for one party member, they group still has challenges.

But then balancing becomes an abstraction on the GM's part as they try to feel their way to a balanced game by creating sessions that specially challenge as well as spotlight all their players......I'd rather have a balanced game and focus my session prep on story


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
SuperBidi wrote:
Temperans wrote:
There is a huge difference between want a 40% chance to hit, 60% chance to hit, and 95% chance to hit. Most people complaining about PF2 are complaining that they can't go up to 60% on their speciality vs the regular enemy, and 50% vs a counter specialist. Instead being 40%-50% on their speciality and 30% on everything else.
Just as a reminder: 60% is the expected chances to hit/demoralize/whatever against a same level enemy. Unless you speak of iterative attacks, and that'd be a completely different issue, you should always be around 60% chances to hit.

I don't for a moment believe that any of those numbers hold true past the first few levels of the game. In every game I've been in or hosted since the release of this edition, characters continue to close the power gap with every new level they obtain. By the time they are 10+ level, they're usually mopping the floor with most enemies.


Ravingdork wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
Temperans wrote:
There is a huge difference between want a 40% chance to hit, 60% chance to hit, and 95% chance to hit. Most people complaining about PF2 are complaining that they can't go up to 60% on their speciality vs the regular enemy, and 50% vs a counter specialist. Instead being 40%-50% on their speciality and 30% on everything else.
Just as a reminder: 60% is the expected chances to hit/demoralize/whatever against a same level enemy. Unless you speak of iterative attacks, and that'd be a completely different issue, you should always be around 60% chances to hit.
I don't for a moment believe any of those numbers hold any water past the first few levels of the game.

The 60% baseline mostly holds up. The issue is that fighting on-level enemies rarely matters (in that most combats with them don't pose a challenge) and a competent party is going to be chock-full of math enhancers anyway.

For example, a fighter attacking a flat-footed and frightened target is looking at an 85% hit rate. Add in successful aid (fake out, 1fA) and a +1 status bonus and you've got 95%. This makes sense, the baseline is just high enough to not overly punish bad parties but also just high enough to reward competent parties to the maximum extent.


PF2 characters are certainly weaker in comparison to PF1 and DnD5e characters. I highly prefer the PC power level of base PF2.

Every decision you make when building and playing your character is felt. That sort of feedback is absent from DnD5e where just about every decision will result in the same successful outcome.

PF1 builds matter even more than PF2 builds, but the play decisions feel more linear based off of your build specializing you into a comparatively narrow range of actions. PF2 goes out of it's way to make having a diversity of options powerful due to that being the main way to get more power instead of math increases.

Further, the lessened power level of individual characters really makes characters rely on their party, which feels more like a team game to me. Often, when playing PF2, I'll feel like the PCs come together to accomplish a goal with multiplicative synergy rather than additive.

I hear the game modifies well with Free Archetype and Dual Class variants to put a lot more power into the hands of each PC, but I've only experienced a little of that since those things are solving a problem I don't have with the game.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
WWHsmackdown wrote:
But then balancing becomes an abstraction on the GM's part as they try to feel their way to a balanced game by creating sessions that specially challenge as well as spotlight all their players......I'd rather have a balanced game and focus my session prep on story

What kind of balance are we talking about exactly?

The specialist has 50% of succeeding while everyone else is more or less shafted either by proficiency gating or % values (trained skills anyone?), or the specialist has a 90% chance of succeeding while everyone remotely invested still has a realistic chance of making the check?

Setting the baseline for the specialist is one of the major contributors if a specialist is considered weak or not. If said baseline is set to one in two for the specialist as it is for PF2 it is only natural that many players do consider them weak.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
WWHsmackdown wrote:


But then balancing becomes an abstraction on the GM's part as they try to feel their way to a balanced game by creating sessions that specially challenge as well as spotlight all their players......I'd rather have a balanced game and focus my session prep on story

I'm not saying you're wrong to want that as a GM.

PF1 sucked to run as a GM, I get it. But for me as a player, that game play is what I enjoyed.

Having played PF2, I hated it as a player. To the limited extent I ran it as a GM, it was breeze. I suppose as a player I could demand the the GM lower the CR of everything by 2 levels or make the party 2 levels higher to get closer to the feel of the game I'd like to have.

But regardless, I totally empathize with the original posters position and dilemma because I felt the same way.


7 people marked this as a favorite.
Ravingdork wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
Just as a reminder: 60% is the expected chances to hit/demoralize/whatever against a same level enemy. Unless you speak of iterative attacks, and that'd be a completely different issue, you should always be around 60% chances to hit.
I don't for a moment believe that any of those numbers hold true past the first few levels of the game.

The chances to hit for a (non-Fighter) martial against an at level enemy with High AC:

1-3: 60%
4: 55%
5: 65%
6-7: 60%
8-11: 55%
12: 50%
13: 60%
14-16: 55%
17: 60%
18-20: 55%
If you consider that you have the Flat Footed bonus half of the time, it's even more than 60% on average.

Against a level +2 enemy you can remove 15% chances to hit, that's why debuffing is very important against solo bosses. But against them, Flat-Footed is very easy to get as you should swarm them.

For skills, the chances to Demoralize an at level opponent with Moderate Will saves are:
1-2: 55%
3: 65%
4-5: 65%
6: 60%
7-8: 70%
9: 65%
10: 75%
11-13: 70%
14: 65%
15: 70%
16: 65%
17-18: 75%
19: 70%
20: 75%
There are some variations dependent on the level you get item bonuses to your skill. But overall it gets easier and easier the higher your level.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Claxon wrote:
I suppose as a player I could demand the the GM lower the CR of everything by 2 levels or make the party 2 levels higher to get closer to the feel of the game I'd like to have.

Thinking about this I seem to remember that at least in AoA many "on level challenges" seemed to be on level in name only.

On level melee enemies hitting like fighters or better.
On level caster enemies casting like full casters or better.
On level hazards..... we don't talk about hazards.

Perhaps this is why people feel weak.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
gesalt wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
Temperans wrote:
There is a huge difference between want a 40% chance to hit, 60% chance to hit, and 95% chance to hit. Most people complaining about PF2 are complaining that they can't go up to 60% on their speciality vs the regular enemy, and 50% vs a counter specialist. Instead being 40%-50% on their speciality and 30% on everything else.
Just as a reminder: 60% is the expected chances to hit/demoralize/whatever against a same level enemy. Unless you speak of iterative attacks, and that'd be a completely different issue, you should always be around 60% chances to hit.
I don't for a moment believe any of those numbers hold any water past the first few levels of the game.

The 60% baseline mostly holds up. The issue is that fighting on-level enemies rarely matters (in that most combats with them don't pose a challenge) and a competent party is going to be chock-full of math enhancers anyway.

For example, a fighter attacking a flat-footed and frightened target is looking at an 85% hit rate. Add in successful aid (fake out, 1fA) and a +1 status bonus and you've got 95%. This makes sense, the baseline is just high enough to not overly punish bad parties but also just high enough to reward competent parties to the maximum extent.

I don't think that's correct in this game, a severe or extreme encounter against same level enemies can be every bit as hard as +3/+4 solo, especially depending on their positioning or abilities. Like, actually running the game at the table, being able to deal with that situation is really important. I think its actually that notion that sometimes drives people to exclusively use hard bosses and easy groups, where the GM is kind of introducing the problem to the game. They're especially nasty if say, you're fighting something like Brimorak, which have the fireball spell, and a small group of them can blast away at the party.


4 people marked this as a favorite.

People expect specialists to be better than regular people. Not just have a 50/50 chance. It doesn't matter if its a team game or not, you either have a unique ability or your have a higher accuracy. Its the same with d6 games, its the same with board games, its the same with tactics games, its the same in video games.

This edition is the first time I hear that specialist should have a 50% chance to fail on something that should be basic. Fighter reaching 80% under ver specific circumstances is the only exception in the game, and its only because they straight up start with a 10% higher chance than everyone else.


12 people marked this as a favorite.
Temperans wrote:

People expect specialists to be better than regular people. Not just have a 50/50 chance. It doesn't matter if its a team game or not, you either have a unique ability or your have a higher accuracy. Its the same with d6 games, its the same with board games, its the same with tactics games, its the same in video games.

This edition is the first time I hear that specialist should have a 50% chance to fail on something that should be basic. Fighter reaching 80% under ver specific circumstances is the only exception in the game, and its only because they straight up start with a 10% higher chance than everyone else.

But as I've shown, they are at 60% chance to succeed, not 50%. And that's without any kind of buff, which are not uncommon.


SuperBidi wrote:
Temperans wrote:

People expect specialists to be better than regular people. Not just have a 50/50 chance. It doesn't matter if its a team game or not, you either have a unique ability or your have a higher accuracy. Its the same with d6 games, its the same with board games, its the same with tactics games, its the same in video games.

This edition is the first time I hear that specialist should have a 50% chance to fail on something that should be basic. Fighter reaching 80% under ver specific circumstances is the only exception in the game, and its only because they straight up start with a 10% higher chance than everyone else.

But as I've shown, they are at 60% chance to succeed, not 50%. And that's without any kind of buff, which are not uncommon.

Then you add in Flanking and a +1 to hit from spell/ability and you already have a big swing in your favor, since both of these are easy to achieve most of the time. Bless and Bards, early Magic Weapon (probably the best spell of the game at the interval where it's most useful, then it's completely useless).


4 people marked this as a favorite.
SuperBidi wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
Just as a reminder: 60% is the expected chances to hit/demoralize/whatever against a same level enemy. Unless you speak of iterative attacks, and that'd be a completely different issue, you should always be around 60% chances to hit.
I don't for a moment believe that any of those numbers hold true past the first few levels of the game.

The chances to hit for a (non-Fighter) martial against an at level enemy with High AC:

1-3: 60%
4: 55%
5: 65%
6-7: 60%
8-11: 55%
12: 50%
13: 60%
14-16: 55%
17: 60%
18-20: 55%
If you consider that you have the Flat Footed bonus half of the time, it's even more than 60% on average.

Against a level +2 enemy you can remove 15% chances to hit, that's why debuffing is very important against solo bosses. But against them, Flat-Footed is very easy to get as you should swarm them.

For skills, the chances to Demoralize an at level opponent with Moderate Will saves are:
1-2: 55%
3: 65%
4-5: 65%
6: 60%
7-8: 70%
9: 65%
10: 75%
11-13: 70%
14: 65%
15: 70%
16: 65%
17-18: 75%
19: 70%
20: 75%
There are some variations dependent on the level you get item bonuses to your skill. But overall it gets easier and easier the higher your level.

Which is OK.

But people keep telling us it is Ok if you don't have an 18 in your attack stat etc
What do the odds look like for them?
5% less all the way down, worse from 17+

What about if it is a secondary skill you want. Say an ability you only start with a 14 in and you only get to up your proficiency as your second proficency choice. Perhaps you can't afford the best item so you are one behind 10-20% down all the way up.


Gortle wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:

...

Which is OK.
But people keep telling us it is Ok if you don't have an 18 in your attack stat etc
What do the odds look like for them?

Because dice variance is a thing, because these numbers are assuming a very specific situation, because the trade-off has its own benefits (often can't be quantifiable) and because you and your party should be working to stack the math in your favor. Also, there's a good chunk of levels when 16 and 18 characters will be at the same +X bonuses.

You're looking at a small part of what comprises combat in PF2e and making assumptions on a sliver of data.

There are so many, many ways that trading off your 18 for a 16 on your main stat can benefit your character in other ways, from avoiding death altogether (DEX or CON) to completely avoiding combats (extra language, crucial skill, etc).

An extra +1 in CHAR instead of your main stat, for example, may give you better odds of feinting/intimidating which nets a benefit to you (compensating your 16) AND to your party.

In short, it's a trade-off you make, PF2e's design made so that it warrants consideration. It's up to you to evaluate it's worth it or not.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

I'm not really sure how much it does warrant consideration. In PF1 so many people did it because you got extra stats from doing it. In PF2 the only people I see ever really consider reducing their main stat are characters who don't actually use their main stat.

I mean yeah it's anecdotal but I've only ever seen a 16 strength Barbarian once, and that was only because they were playing a sprite, and absolutely felt it. I've definitely never seen a 14 strength Barbarian though.


5 people marked this as a favorite.
Gortle wrote:

Which is OK.

But people keep telling us it is Ok if you don't have an 18 in your attack stat etc
What do the odds look like for them?
5% less all the way down, worse from 17+

What about if it is a secondary skill you want. Say an ability you only start with a 14 in and you only get to up your proficiency as your second proficency choice. Perhaps you can't afford the best item so you are one behind 10-20% down all the way up.

A 16 puts you at 5% less during half of the levels, so 2.5% less on average.

For skills, it still works quite fine. You'll be at 10% less chances during your career, but you'll still get pretty nice odds at high level.
Also, I've not counted any circumstance bonus to skills, and there are many easily available ones.

The 60% mark is quite working. I've very often seen 9s and 10s being successes. Actually, when it's not a success (outside of boss fights) I tend to find that there's something problematic (it can happen when you have crazy rare/unique tags or very/incredibly hard difficulties for no reasons).

Now, one can find that 60% chance is too low. But when you add the +10% from flanking, the +10% from Fighter, you get pretty close to 100% giving extremely low room for low level/moderate AC/buff/debuff. And I think it's the reason why PF2 chose this 60% mark, as above that you get to the ceiling too easily.


6 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Man, if people could get their chances higher buffs and support and tactics would be either meaningless or crits would be so common battles would be rocket tag again.

I'm really, really happy with the balance as is.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
SuperBidi wrote:
The 60% mark is quite working. I've very often seen 9s and 10s being successes.

The only question that I do have in this regards is, how white roomy are those 60% (expected to hit versus monster building AC guidelines), because I do not remember 9s and 10s mostly being successes, at least not during the first 2 volumes of AoA that I have played (which however means that I am definitely missing high level experience).

AoA spoilers:

For example the first on-level monster you meet is a Fire Mephit, AC17. Thats a 10+ or 55% with +7. Other notable level 1 monsters that you meet in the adventure include Charau-ka AC18 (50%), Graveshells AC17 to 19 (55%-45%) or Blood Blade Mercenaries AC18 (50%). But this may just be adventure path specific monster selection though. However even a "simple" level 2 Bandit has AC19, i.e. a non-fighter character level 2 would need a 11+ to hit (50%).

Also, if you do a success chance for other activities, e.g. counteracting, your success chance might be really lower (not done a survey about this yet, but most enemy casters or hazards encountered seemed extraordinary hard to counteract), especially as you mostly can not pump those rolls with easy to achieve conditions or buffs.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
WatersLethe wrote:

Man, if people could get their chances higher buffs and support and tactics would be either meaningless or crits would be so common battles would be rocket tag again.

I'm really, really happy with the balance as is.

Eh. It's kind of a wash for me. There's one or two "correct" ways to build a party and play the game and doing otherwise is just an exercise in frustration.


9 people marked this as a favorite.
gesalt wrote:
WatersLethe wrote:

Man, if people could get their chances higher buffs and support and tactics would be either meaningless or crits would be so common battles would be rocket tag again.

I'm really, really happy with the balance as is.

Eh. It's kind of a wash for me. There's one or two "correct" ways to build a party and play the game and doing otherwise is just an exercise in frustration.

There's a thousand ways to build a party, I'm running... counting... 6 games of pf2e and i've closed 2 campaigns already. all of our parties were 5-6 PC parties, and most of the players outside of me do not do party optimisation.

And it just works! Whatever we bring to the table, if someone just remembers to invest one skill increase and 1-2 skill feats in medicine, we good, the rest is gravy. People pick up what they feel the party lacks as they level up, but otherwise do their thing, or sometimes pick incredibly specific options that bring nothing but flavor to the table.

No issues, no TPK, no nothing because the math is made to enable you. If you're building a suboptimal party in pf2e, you're still very near the benchmark!

If you're building a suboptimal party in pf1e, you will.... well probably just enable your GM to run the AP as is....


Ubertron_X wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
The 60% mark is quite working. I've very often seen 9s and 10s being successes.

The only question that I do have in this regards is, how white roomy are those 60% (expected to hit versus monster building AC guidelines), because I do not remember 9s and 10s mostly being successes, at least not during the first 2 volumes of AoA that I have played (which however means that I am definitely missing high level experience).

** spoiler omitted **

Also, if you do a success chance for other activities, e.g. counteracting, your success chance might be really lower (not done a survey about this yet, but most enemy casters or hazards encountered seemed extraordinary hard to counteract), especially as you mostly can not pump those rolls with easy to achieve conditions or buffs.

It's an average vs moderate AC. Some specific cases will have higher AC's because they can have high AC. High AC, in design philosophy, is often counterbalanced by something else, usually lower HP or very low will/ref/fort.

Counteracting often has the perception of failure because its often attempted agaisnt the highest level spell slot of a very potent (level+2) spellcaster. They're better then you, counterspelling as a reaction would negate their whole turn, of course its hard.

If you go into a room where you're figthing level-2 ennemies and you try to counteract their innate darkness spell, its gonna be incredibly easy to do so. You just need to understand what you're doing and your odds of success when you counteract.

The Exchange

Ubertron_X wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
The 60% mark is quite working. I've very often seen 9s and 10s being successes.

The only question that I do have in this regards is, how white roomy are those 60% (expected to hit versus monster building AC guidelines), because I do not remember 9s and 10s mostly being successes, at least not during the first 2 volumes of AoA that I have played (which however means that I am definitely missing high level experience).

** spoiler omitted **

Also, if you do a success chance for other activities, e.g. counteracting, your success chance might be really lower (not done a survey about this yet, but most enemy casters or hazards encountered seemed extraordinary hard to counteract), especially as you mostly can not pump those rolls with easy to achieve conditions or buffs.

It is completely white room theorycrafting and that is what is expected here on the Paizo forums.

The posters on these boards represent the most "enthusiastic" fanpersons of the system and thus is a great resource if you have gone all-in on the system.

However, much like the various boards for every other game system (e.g. Shadowrun (every edition), Rolemaster, Harn, Amber, Ars Magica, etc.), it is not a good place for objective discussion of issues with a system.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Ubertron_X wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
The 60% mark is quite working. I've very often seen 9s and 10s being successes.

The only question that I do have in this regards is, how white roomy are those 60% (expected to hit versus monster building AC guidelines), because I do not remember 9s and 10s mostly being successes, at least not during the first 2 volumes of AoA that I have played (which however means that I am definitely missing high level experience).

** spoiler omitted **

Also, if you do a success chance for other activities, e.g. counteracting, your success chance might be really lower (not done a survey about this yet, but most enemy casters or hazards encountered seemed extraordinary hard to counteract), especially as you mostly can not pump those rolls with easy to achieve conditions or buffs.

AoA is not a very good benchmark as there was a lot of issues in it (one of the monsters you speak about is notorious for their insane damage).

As a side note, 19 AC at level 2 is 55% chance to hit once you get the potency rune that you're supposed to get at this level. Obviously, I have considered max item bonus.

Also, I've used high AC, not Moderate ones, as High AC is more common than Moderate. From my experience (both as a player and a GM) most monsters are at high AC. Sometimes they have one extra point of AC, but it's kind of the end of it. Extreme AC monsters exist, but they are not very common.

Hsui wrote:
It is completely white room theorycrafting and that is what is expected here on the Paizo forums.
Hsui wrote:
However, much like the various boards for every other game system (e.g. Shadowrun (every edition), Rolemaster, Harn, Amber, Ars Magica, etc.), it is not a good place for objective discussion of issues with a system.

I love the internal contradiction. Is it theorycrafting or subjective? You got to make a choice.

The Exchange

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Hsui wrote:
Ubertron_X wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
The 60% mark is quite working. I've very often seen 9s and 10s being successes.

The only question that I do have in this regards is, how white roomy are those 60% (expected to hit versus monster building AC guidelines), because I do not remember 9s and 10s mostly being successes, at least not during the first 2 volumes of AoA that I have played (which however means that I am definitely missing high level experience).

** spoiler omitted **

Also, if you do a success chance for other activities, e.g. counteracting, your success chance might be really lower (not done a survey about this yet, but most enemy casters or hazards encountered seemed extraordinary hard to counteract), especially as you mostly can not pump those rolls with easy to achieve conditions or buffs.

It is completely white room theorycrafting and that is what is expected here on the Paizo forums.

The posters on these boards represent the most "enthusiastic" fanpersons of the system and thus is a great resource if you have gone all-in on the system.

However, much like the various boards for every other game system (e.g. Shadowrun (every edition), Rolemaster, Harn, Amber, Ars Magica, etc.), it is not a good place for objective discussion of issues with a system.

Also keep in mind that most if not all of the posters are primarily GMs. On one extreme, you have a poster GMing SIX concurrent pathfinder games. As has been mentioned before by others PF2 is a GMs edition while PF1 was a players edition. Even though there is some mention of being players, ... let us leave it at that ....

The Exchange

1 person marked this as a favorite.
SuperBidi wrote:
Ubertron_X wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
The 60% mark is quite working. I've very often seen 9s and 10s being successes.

The only question that I do have in this regards is, how white roomy are those 60% (expected to hit versus monster building AC guidelines), because I do not remember 9s and 10s mostly being successes, at least not during the first 2 volumes of AoA that I have played (which however means that I am definitely missing high level experience).

** spoiler omitted **

Also, if you do a success chance for other activities, e.g. counteracting, your success chance might be really lower (not done a survey about this yet, but most enemy casters or hazards encountered seemed extraordinary hard to counteract), especially as you mostly can not pump those rolls with easy to achieve conditions or buffs.

AoA is not a very good benchmark as there was a lot of issues in it (one of the monsters you speak about is notorious for their insane damage).

As a side note, 19 AC at level 2 is 55% chance to hit once you get the potency rune that you're supposed to get at this level. Obviously, I have considered max item bonus.

Also, I've used high AC, not Moderate ones, as High AC is more common than Moderate. From my experience (both as a player and a GM) most monsters are at high AC. Sometimes they have one extra point of AC, but it's kind of the end of it. Extreme AC monsters exist, but they are not very common.

Hsui wrote:
It is completely white room theorycrafting and that is what is expected here on the Paizo forums.
Hsui wrote:
However, much like the various boards for every other game system (e.g. Shadowrun (every edition), Rolemaster, Harn, Amber, Ars Magica, etc.), it is not a good place for objective discussion of issues with a system.
I love the internal contradiction. Is it theorycrafting or subjective? You got to make a choice.

Internal contradiction? No clue why you feel that saying other systems have discussion boards has any relevance. But your comment does support what I mention


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Actually I GM two and I play in four, sorry for misunderstanding.

And of those four games, I play a wizard, a druid, an inventor and a fighter. Let's just say I am REALLY looking forward to being level 7 with my casters and getting some slight buffs to my spells. Also the GM is mean and keeps Crit succeeding my carefully layed out spell plans.

I'm still having a lot of fun though because I don't feel like I'm stealing the spotlight from other players by shutting down encounters in one spell like I did in pf1e. I participate in a meaningful manner by cleverly picking my contributions and weighing my odds, but I no longer have the option of shutting down 14 grindilow in 3 rounds with color spray spam at level 1.


Hsui wrote:

I love the internal contradiction. Is it theorycrafting or subjective? You got to make a choice.

Internal contradiction? No clue why you feel that saying other systems have...

Does it though? I feel like it doesn't...


13 people marked this as a favorite.
Hsui wrote:


Internal contradiction? No clue why you feel that saying other systems have...

You can't complain that we do theorycrafting and at the same time say this is not a place for objective discussions. Either you want subjective discussions or you want theorycrafting which is the only form of objective discussions we can have on a system.

You misuse the word objective. Agreeing with you is not being objective. Also, subjective is not bad. To understand a game we need both theorycrafting and experience, they both complement each other.

Ubertron_X wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
The 60% mark is quite working. I've very often seen 9s and 10s being successes.
The only question that I do have in this regards is, how white roomy are those 60% (expected to hit versus monster building AC guidelines), because I do not remember 9s and 10s mostly being successes, at least not during the first 2 volumes of AoA that I have played (which however means that I am definitely missing high level experience).

I've looked at Exocist work on monsters, and from the bestiary the median and mode AC at each level is exactly the High AC from the GMG, and the mean AC is actually slightly under that. So I think it's a pretty good measure of monsters AC, making my calculations quite right.

The Exchange

1 person marked this as a favorite.
SuperBidi wrote:
Hsui wrote:


Internal contradiction? No clue why you feel that saying other systems have...

You can't complain that we do theorycrafting and at the same time say this is not a place for objective discussions. Either you want subjective discussions or you want theorycrafting which is the only form of objective discussions we can have on a system.

You misuse the word objective. Agreeing with you is not being objective. Also, subjective is not bad. To understand a game we need both theorycrafting and experience, they both complement each other.

Ah - a Princess Bride quote comes to mind ...

oh well, have fun and hopefully you continue enjoying whatever you do


7 people marked this as a favorite.

Well that was pointless...


2 people marked this as a favorite.
SuperBidi wrote:
Obviously, I have considered max item bonus.

Thats ok but please remember that items of approriate level dont instantly materialize in your characters possession as soon as you hit the respective level in "real life". Some items may start to appear rather early, but more often then not they only start to come online mid level, and depending on your current campaign (aka "the great outdoors") they may even be several levels late, simply caused by the fact that a typical campaign is much diffent from e.g. PFS oneshots, where you have a chance to aquire gear and resupply after each single session. I specifically mention this because many challenges in AoA seemed to operate with the same premise, i.e. once you leveled up in the middle of nowhere you are magically supposed to be maxed out nonetheless.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Hsui wrote:
oh well, have fun and hopefully you continue enjoying whatever you do

Have fun, too.

Also, I'm not dismissing your point of view. I was just explaining that the actual maths are at 60%, not that the feeling of weakness was wrong.

I think there are issues in the way encounters are built.
There are 5 levels of encounters:
Trivial: So easy we shouldn't care about
Low: Really easy encounter
Moderate: Quite easy encounter
Severe: Quite hard encounter
Extreme: So hard we shouldn't use it at all

The overall feeling as a player is that you only have 2 types of encounters. And this lack of granularity is in my opinion an issue.

Considering how PF2 is balanced, I think the developers should have designed encounters in a very different way than in previous editions. In PF1, if you want an encounter to be harder you just design an encounter for a higher level. But not in PF2 where designing an encounter for a higher level makes it so hard it can end up with a TPK. In PF2, a single extra monster can really make an encounter harder. The developers should have added extra granularity to encounter levels. Something like:
Trivial: 40 xp
Low: 60 xp
Moderate: 80 xp
Tough: 100 xp
Severe: 120 xp
Deadly: 140 xp
Extreme: 160 xp

That would give 3 "average difficulty encounters", 1 under average, 1 over average, and 2 difficulties you should not use. This extra granularity would encourage more encounter variations.
On top of that, both Tough and Deadly encounter budgets force you to have multiple monsters of different levels, and I think PF2 system really handles well having a couple of monsters with complementary abilities instead of concentrating the whole budget on a single monster (solo monsters work fine but you will in general use the same kind of tactics against them and it can be boring if you have too many of them).

My 2 cents.

Ubertron_X wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
Obviously, I have considered max item bonus.
Thats ok but please remember that items of approriate level dont instantly materialize in your characters possession as soon as you hit the respective level in "real life". Some items may start to appear rather early, but more often then not they only start to come online mid level, and depending on your current campaign (aka "the great outdoors") they may even be several levels late, simply caused by the fact that a typical campaign is much diffent from e.g. PFS oneshots, where you have a chance to aquire gear and resupply after each single session. I specifically mention this because many challenges in AoA seemed to operate with the same premise, i.e. once you leveled up in the middle of nowhere you are magically supposed to be maxed out nonetheless.

In the AoA campaign I play, we are overequipped. That's the kind of variation I can't take into account, as it's too specific.

For weapons, I've found that PCs were very often having the Runes when levelling up. But that's an average on a very limited sample.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
AlastarOG wrote:
Counteracting often has the perception of failure because its often attempted agaisnt the highest level spell slot of a very potent (level+2) spellcaster. They're better then you, counterspelling as a reaction would negate their whole turn, of course its hard.

While this is of course not wrong when facing higher level opponents I do remember many occations where an even level spellcaster was simply ahead in proficiency (if you did the math behind their DC), i.e. you were down by at least 2 (and depending on attribute sometimes even more) on DC and counteracting checks.


Ubertron_X wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
Obviously, I have considered max item bonus.
Thats ok but please remember that items of approriate level dont instantly materialize in your characters possession as soon as you hit the respective level in "real life". Some items may start to appear rather early, but more often then not they only start to come online mid level, and depending on your current campaign (aka "the great outdoors") they may even be several levels late, simply caused by the fact that a typical campaign is much diffent from e.g. PFS oneshots, where you have a chance to aquire gear and resupply after each single session. I specifically mention this because many challenges in AoA seemed to operate with the same premise, i.e. once you leveled up in the middle of nowhere you are magically supposed to be maxed out nonetheless.

I do agree with you overall UbertronX, for example my fighter had to wait till level 12 to get a +2 rune and a Greater striking rune, making level 10-11 feel kinda weird (and this was with extinction curse, a lot of AP's have kind of a weird down curve in wealth at levels 9-12, this is also the level where you stop having almost guaranteed access to most items because level 10+ cities are few and far between).

However when considering the ''most likely scenario'' basing ourselves on ABP as the ''expected math'' is the best way to go.

Macro stats are just that, broad strokes, individual situations can vary wildly from that, but the macro's are useful to consider ''is this a real problem, or is it a perceived problem skewed by a bias?''


2 people marked this as a favorite.
AlastarOG wrote:

However when considering the ''most likely scenario'' basing ourselves on ABP as the ''expected math'' is the best way to go.

Macro stats are just that, broad strokes, individual situations can vary wildly from that, but the macro's are useful to consider ''is this a real problem, or is it a perceived problem skewed by a bias?''

Which for me as a 'tech' guy is more than ok, as some kind of approximation or model has to be taken into account when doing theoretical exercises, however one should never forget that while some things may very well work on paper, reality may look a lot different, especially if one or more additional and probably indirect variables are taken into account, e.g. time. In effect this means that both parties can be correct, those who claim that the math / theory is flawless, and those who claim that there are (perceived) problems outside of theorycrafting.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Ubertron_X wrote:
AlastarOG wrote:
Counteracting often has the perception of failure because its often attempted agaisnt the highest level spell slot of a very potent (level+2) spellcaster. They're better then you, counterspelling as a reaction would negate their whole turn, of course its hard.
While this is of course not wrong when facing higher level opponents I do remember many occations where an even level spellcaster was simply ahead in proficiency (if you did the math behind their DC), i.e. you were down by at least 2 (and depending on attribute sometimes even more) on DC and counteracting checks.

It's all over the place. A player caster will be +4 on DC at 20 vs an ancient gold dragon but still lose on spell attack rolls by 3 somehow, be 5 behind spell attacks and dc vs a lich at 12 and match a ghost mage's DC but be 4 behind on spell attacks at 10.

Remember: players and monsters follow different rules. Monster numbers tend to scale such that their speciality is set to "challenge" the best player option and dominate the others.


5 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Also remember that an equal-level enemy would be a extreme encounter for just one character. Such a fight is designed to be roughly a 50/50 without circumstantial help and hero points, so around 60% success/10% critical success seems right.

And that's sorta the whole reason pf2e feels balanced from the GM's perspective. Making the players feel more powerful can be done by using lower-level opponents more regularly or just giving out a bonus level in a premade adventure.

Liberty's Edge

2 people marked this as a favorite.

That is what I like most in PF2 : all the possibilities to adjust the game to your party's taste without breaking the game.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Hsui wrote:
It is completely white room theorycrafting and that is what is expected here on the Paizo forums.

In my career as an applied research mathematician, I learned that new applied mathematical techniques require tests against real-world data. Sometimes the mathematical model of the data was flawed, so theory did not work.

This habit continues to my discussions in the forums. That is half the reason I illustrate my analysis with tales of actual games. (The other half is that I like talking about my creative players.) White room theorycrafting usually ignores the variety of tactics available to clever players.

I strained my wrist yesterday and had to stop typing while I put ice on it, so I have a delayed comment to catch up on that provides an example.

breithauptclan wrote:
The core of the problem though, is that nothing in PF2 trivializes the d20. You can tweak the probabilities of success by a few points, but that d20 roll is always significant.

The dice were being impish during my game session this Friday. The 14th-level party was fighting 10th-level gugs again. The Flurry-edge ranger had +25 to hit versus the gug's AC 30, an 80% chance to hit. His first three Strikes that turn against his hunted prey rolled a natural 2, 4, and 8, with a -6 multiple attack penalty on the 8. Fortunately, the ranger was Hasted, so he had a fourth Strike and rolled a natural 20 for a critical hit with his longbow.

The one good hit against the gug made the player feel successful.

But that is after another example of tactical teamwork. The gug battle two weeks ago took place in an 80-foot by 90-foot room where most PCs could keep out of reach of the gugs. The next battle occurred in a pair of 30-foot-by-30-foot rooms linked by a 15-foot-wide passage. The party tried to set up a bottleneck at the passage, to keep the gugs in the north room and their ranged members in the south room, but the 15th-level gug shaman could throw spells too, a 10th-level gug used Eerie Flexibility to slip through a hole in their line, and a 10th-level demon Dimension-Doored into the south room. The gug in the south room stood in the center and attack 4 PCs at once with its Furious Claws attack. The situation looked dire when we ended the game session two weeks ago.

It looked dire, but really wasn't. To paraphrase Rorschach from Watchmen, the party was not trapped in the room with a gug and demon. The gug and the demon were trapped in the room with the party. It was two 10th-level monsters surrounded by seven 14th-level PCs and a 12th-level NPC. The party could ignore the danger in the other room temporarily to deal with them.

Colga, the 12th-level NPC champion with AC 33, Strode over to stand adjacent to the party's goblin champion Tikti. She provoked both attacks of opportunity from the center gug and a northern gug and took solid damage. Colga's movement let Tikti scuttle to flank the center gug opposite the rogue/sorcerer Sam, her first use of Goblin Scuttle ancestry feat in the entire campaign. Colga had two actions left, so she Struck the center gug with her maul for a regular hit and a critical hit. Sam cast Dragon Claws, and his Strike with sneak attack finished off the gug. That left Tikti free to attack the demon on her turn.

And the ranger was free to shoot at the northern gug for three misses and a crit.

Embarrassingly, in my previous comment I had said, "Trying to flank a gug would be suicidal." Nope, trying to flank a gug was successful. Thus, my theorycrafting about the difficulty of flanking a gug was wrong.


Mathmuse wrote:
breithauptclan wrote:
The core of the problem though, is that nothing in PF2 trivializes the d20. You can tweak the probabilities of success by a few points, but that d20 roll is always significant.

The dice were being impish during my game session this Friday. The 14th-level party was fighting 10th-level gugs again.

It was two 10th-level monsters surrounded by seven 14th-level PCs and a 12th-level NPC.

That is true. There is one thing that can trivialize the d20 - relative level difference. In both directions.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

I feel like one of the strengths of the edition is also one of its weaknesses: the extremely tight math. A +1 to hit isn't just a greater chance to hit, it's a greater chance to crit. An area affect frighten ability makes the chance of crit failing the next spell much higher.

This can be a strong benefit of teamwork, but it can also be unforgiving when either the PCs don't know how to work as a team or the dice just aren't cooperating well. A bit more 'slop' in the math might mean that simply being flanked doesn't lead to a crit, which leads to a condition, which leads to failed save, etc. It can be a punishing spiral at times and what looked like a moderate fight is suddenly fighting for your life.

One of the common solutions is to bump the party up a level, and this can work well. But what if you really just need half a level? The math is too tight to tune finely at times. I like a lot about this edition, but sometimes it seems like a +12 to -12 crit spread would have felt better.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Enchanter Tim wrote:
I like a lot about this edition, but sometimes it seems like a +12 to -12 crit spread would have felt better.

An idea, if one wants to have such a feeling, is to give the choice when you make an attack/skill check/casts a spell to benefit from a +2 at the cost of not being able to score a critical hit (or critical failure in the case of DCs).

If what one wants is to succeed often, it should put their chances of success closer to 70%, which is really nice, even if the maths should not be impacted much as it'll remove all the chances to critically succeed.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
SuperBidi wrote:
Enchanter Tim wrote:
I like a lot about this edition, but sometimes it seems like a +12 to -12 crit spread would have felt better.

An idea, if one wants to have such a feeling, is to give the choice when you make an attack/skill check/casts a spell to benefit from a +2 at the cost of not being able to score a critical hit (or critical failure in the case of DCs).

If what one wants is to succeed often, it should put their chances of success closer to 70%, which is really nice, even if the maths should not be impacted much as it'll remove all the chances to critically succeed.

An interesting idea. Seems like something a Tactician class could play around with, perhaps.


10 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

My opinion from my experiences, speaking more for the people I play with than myself, is that the game should have been easier by default. It makes more sense in my mind than to get the gm to adjust things to make them easier, as the gm might also be new to the system or just not dig enough to find the advice to lower enemy levels. A huge amount of people don't go on forums or Reddit and ask for advice.

I am the one in my group who spends way too much time reading and rereading rules, browsing forums, watching videos on the game. But the others in my party don't. I have one player who wastes a lot of actions turning into a rat, climbing on their crow animal companion, commanding them to move, then getting off and turning back into a rat. There's a lot of gm leeway there but it's simply what the person wants to do. Similarly, I have a player with a champion pc who has ac as high as they can get (I make sure to help them with items at least) but still gets hit all the time, and misses a lot (again their hit chance is as high as they can get). They have a few feats they forget about a lot, or they're just not built very well for (like sunblade; cool spell but their charisma isn't that high. Hell, I'm a full caster and I have a hard time hitting). I gave advice for a while, like why don't you do ____ as your last action, why don't you shield block, etc, but they just want to hammer away. Last session they said they need better equipment so they hit more often or get higher AC, but they have as good as they can. And some people are going to be like that, they want to roll dice, roleplay, have a few laughs. There's nothing wrong with that, and those that say players who prefer simple are playing the game wrong are unfair, imo.

Tldr - I feel the game should be easier with the option to ramp up difficulty instead of the other way around. The players who don't want complexity should be catered to before the ones who do - the people who want challenge can make it for themselves easier than newbs who might get turned off if they have to do a bunch of research to tweak the game and such


1 person marked this as a favorite.
AlastarOG wrote:
gesalt wrote:
WatersLethe wrote:

Man, if people could get their chances higher buffs and support and tactics would be either meaningless or crits would be so common battles would be rocket tag again.

I'm really, really happy with the balance as is.

Eh. It's kind of a wash for me. There's one or two "correct" ways to build a party and play the game and doing otherwise is just an exercise in frustration.

There's a thousand ways to build a party, I'm running... counting... 6 games of pf2e and i've closed 2 campaigns already. all of our parties were 5-6 PC parties, and most of the players outside of me do not do party optimisation.

And it just works! Whatever we bring to the table, if someone just remembers to invest one skill increase and 1-2 skill feats in medicine, we good, the rest is gravy. People pick up what they feel the party lacks as they level up, but otherwise do their thing, or sometimes pick incredibly specific options that bring nothing but flavor to the table.

No issues, no TPK, no nothing because the math is made to enable you. If you're building a suboptimal party in pf2e, you're still very near the benchmark!

If you're building a suboptimal party in pf1e, you will.... well probably just enable your GM to run the AP as is....

This is what I see as well across my multiple campaigns. I had players use suboptimal choices, still have an effect, and the party overall succeeded. The rangebound nature of PF2 means it's real hard to fall too far outside the range one way or the other. So you may not be great, but you'll never be too bad either.


4 people marked this as a favorite.
Gaulin wrote:
My opinion from my experiences, speaking more for the people I play with than myself, is that the game should have been easier by default. It makes more sense in my mind than to get the gm to adjust things to make them easier, as the gm might also be new to the system or just not dig enough to find the advice to lower enemy levels. A huge amount of people don't go on forums or Reddit and ask for advice.

I'm thinking you are talking more about the published adventures than the game rules.

I have no problems with the idea that a CR= enemy is the baseline for a tough enemy. If you go higher than that, it means that this enemy is going to be really challenging. If you want easier combat, use enemies that are lower than that. This is also what the encounter building guidelines in the rulebooks recommend too.

It makes sense. No reading of Reddit required.

The published modules, especially the earliest ones, are known to have been tuned a bit high.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
breithauptclan wrote:
Gaulin wrote:
My opinion from my experiences, speaking more for the people I play with than myself, is that the game should have been easier by default. It makes more sense in my mind than to get the gm to adjust things to make them easier, as the gm might also be new to the system or just not dig enough to find the advice to lower enemy levels. A huge amount of people don't go on forums or Reddit and ask for advice.

I'm thinking you are talking more about the published adventures than the game rules.

I have no problems with the idea that a CR= enemy is the baseline for a tough enemy. If you go higher than that, it means that this enemy is going to be really challenging. If you want easier combat, use enemies that are lower than that. This is also what the encounter building guidelines in the rulebooks recommend too.

It makes sense. No reading of Reddit required.

The published modules, especially the earliest ones, are known to have been tuned a bit high.

If a new PF2e GM is doing a homebrewed adventure, more likely than not they will mainly use moderate encounters against the party, which definitely allows everyone to shine. But that's, of course, assuming the GM is being prudent and following the guidelines, instead of assuming they either know better and want to challenge their players (thus doing harder encounters as baseline) or they are veteran GM's trying to apply their previous knowledge to this new system, which is most likely the main driving factor behind posts with titles such as"is Pf2e too hard?", when they are thinking PF2e's system can't be trusted like D&D5e and PF1e (most common previous systems for new PF2e players).


7 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

I mean whatever the baseline difficulty, Paizo can't solve for people who don't read the guidelines or ignore them because other editions have bad ones.

201 to 250 of 456 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | next > last >>
Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder Second Edition / General Discussion / So in 2E, is it normal to just feel... really weak? All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.