Why do people want to change Kinetist instead of making a totally new class?


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion

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I was originally going to ask this in the "Why is Kineticist awesome?" thread, but I figured this question would derail that thread too much.

So, here we go.

I have seen a lot of people who keep saying that they want a kineticist and that kineticist is a great class. But then a lot of people keep saying that the Kineticist class should do everything but what it originally did. Everything from, "kineticist should just be a monk with elemental power" to "kineticist should have any resource what so ever and just deal damage".

I understood people saying swashbuckler, investigator, and gunslinger just being archetypes of fighter and/or rogue. Those classes have a very close thematic connection and in the case of swashbuckler/gunslinger where directly tied to fighter. But Kineticist is quite literally a completely original Paizo class with a completely original Paizo mechanic. There were many classes that copied the kineticist from havocker witch to water dancer monk to paladin with the sun blade feat. But somehow now people want Kineticist to be a monk clone and I just do not get it?

So can someone explain it to me? Why can't another class be made to be the "stance master"? Why does the kineticist have to be sacrificed for a "resourseless elementalist class"?


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I'm fairly certain that when people say the kineticists shouldn't have resources they are talking about how their main form of attack are functionally blast spells which neither count as spells nor use spell slots, and isn't about not using the burn mechanic 1e had. Which is what I assume you meant? Perhaps I'm not familiar enough with it, but both changing "stances" and blasting "at-will" (without resources) is very much in line with what the class was


AestheticDialectic wrote:
I'm fairly certain that when people say the kineticists shouldn't have resources they are talking about how their main form of attack are functionally blast spells which neither count as spells nor use spell slots, and isn't about not using the burn mechanic 1e had. Which is what I assume you meant? Perhaps I'm not familiar enough with it, but both changing "stances" and blasting "at-will" (without resources) is very much in line with what the class was

What I am seeing is people eliminating burn wholesale. Often replacing it with Focus point or not at all.

I know there were stance-like abilities. But the class was never "about stances" and "switching stances". It was more like "I can now fly" or "for this 1 turn I can make/enhance melee strikes".


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Did you really feel a need to make a thread complaining that other people had a different idea for a class design? Folks disagree. I don’t feel bound to the 1e Kineticist at all, mechanically, so long as the thematic fantasy comes through - the same way I feel about Inquisitor, and Medium, and Shaman coming over to 2e.

This is a pretty toxic take that ultimately boils down to “why do people disagree with me?”


keftiu wrote:

Did you really feel a need to make a thread complaining that other people had a different idea for a class design? Folks disagree. I don’t feel bound to the 1e Kineticist at all, mechanically, so long as the thematic fantasy comes through - the same way I feel about Inquisitor, and Medium, and Shaman coming over to 2e.

This is a pretty toxic take that ultimately boils down to “why do people disagree with me?”

I am not complaining, I am honestly curious and because I want to avoid being toxic and derailing another thread I made my own. Or are you saying that making my own thread is more toxic?

Also, thank you for your answer.


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Temperans wrote:
keftiu wrote:

Did you really feel a need to make a thread complaining that other people had a different idea for a class design? Folks disagree. I don’t feel bound to the 1e Kineticist at all, mechanically, so long as the thematic fantasy comes through - the same way I feel about Inquisitor, and Medium, and Shaman coming over to 2e.

This is a pretty toxic take that ultimately boils down to “why do people disagree with me?”

I am not complaining, I am honestly curious and because I want to avoid being toxic and derailing another thread I made my own. Or are you saying that making my own thread is more toxic?

Also, thank you for your answer.

I apologize for being so cranky. Things have felt a little tense in other discussions about this class, and I misread your intent.


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I don't see changes in mechanics as changes to the class so much as adaptation to a new system in order to best replicate what the class represented to those that enjoyed it (and perhaps to those who hadn't, but could've if the mechanics had been different).

Mechanics are secondary, their purpose being to make a PC concept work, meaning Burn is secondary. And even PF1 had an archetype to opt out of it (which I used for mine BTW). As keftiu noted, it's about the fantasy of a Kineticist. There's tons of vibrant imagery involved, many roles they can take, and lots of cool powers and effects they had which would translate well into PF2. Whether Burn helps or hinders those determines whether or not I care about Burn coming along too. I personally don't see Burn's PF1 version fitting in the PF2 paradigm. From buffing to having permanent pseudo-damage, it doesn't sync well. What I can grok is using Focus Points, and then have some sort of penalizing mechanic (which will likely be called Burn, but be whatever suits best) which recharges your Focus Points during battle. Since getting two Focus Points per lull doesn't come online until 12th (usually), and three at 18th, Burn would become sort of a given IMO so one can squeeze in another Focus Point boosted blast (which is an aspect of PF1 Burn that should carry over IMO). Also IMO Burn sort of mirrors the purposes of Focus Points, albeit with a setback, so that makes making Burn interesting that much harder, and I'd rather not waste the space when there's so, so much other cool stuff fans will require be replicated.


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I have no strong enmity on neither keeping nor swapping old mechanics for Kineticists.

Except, Burn.

It's just a foul way of harshly penalizing the PF1 version just because some bizarre consensus in the old design team severely overvalued the Constitution ability being a proactive stat, which it shouldn't had been (especially as CON has no other proactive function like skill bonuses, unlike the other 5).


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I can see going sort of an oracle's curse route with burn, where the focus pool functions as burn, and when you use focus you suffer a burn effect as a drawback, but refocusing lets you reduce or remove the penalty. It would keep the "overclocking" mechanic, without making the penalty last all day.

Personally, I like the concept of burn, but think it was tuned punitively.


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I can take or leave mechanics so long as my baseline is accurate, resourceless elemental pew pews. Anything else is secondary or tertiary to what I need from the kineticist. Keep burn, don't keep burn, I don't care. I have no horse in that race. All I really need is what's listed above. How fun or not fun original kineticist mechanics are in a new rendition would dictate my playtest feedback.


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Just going to throw my name in the pile of people who don't really care if the mechanics are much like PF1 as long as it delivers good flavor. I'd prefer it to be slotless and have burn, but those are far from requirements for me.


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I would rather paizo approach all classes for the thematic and entirely divorce them from their pf1e mechanics (not arbitrarily, but I would rather mechanical elements from the first game be inspiration and not goals).

The classes that didn't try to be pf1e adaptations worked out the most interesting imo.


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Temperans wrote:
What I am seeing is people eliminating burn wholesale. Often replacing it with Focus point or not at all.

*Raises hand* Yep that's me. I LOATHED burn in PF1 so if we can jettison that baggage into deep space and then nuke it from orbit, I can finally be happy playing one.

Temperans wrote:
But the class was never "about stances" and "switching stances".

Not a huge fan of stances but they are still 1000% better than burn ever was IMO.

Castilliano wrote:
And even PF1 had an archetype to opt out of it (which I used for mine BTW).

You mean Underwhelming Soul? It was really bad: you lose +6 damage, +12 stats and 35% miss chance on sneak/crit attacks. That and you had to go cha instead of con. I hope that if we have burn and non-burn options in PF2, the non-burn options isn't treated as badly as the Pf1 version.


graystone wrote:
Temperans wrote:
What I am seeing is people eliminating burn wholesale. Often replacing it with Focus point or not at all.

*Raises hand* Yep that's me. I LOATHED burn in PF1 so if we can jettison that baggage into deep space and then nuke it from orbit, I can finally be happy playing one.

Temperans wrote:
But the class was never "about stances" and "switching stances".

Not a huge fan of stances but they are still 1000% better than burn ever was IMO.

Castilliano wrote:
And even PF1 had an archetype to opt out of it (which I used for mine BTW).
You mean Underwhelming Soul? It was really bad: you lose +6 damage, +12 stats and 35% miss chance on sneak/crit attacks. That and you had to go cha instead of con. I hope that if we have burn and non-burn options in PF2, the non-burn options isn't treated as badly as the Pf1 version.

Soul isn't so bad, since your accuracy and (reduced) damage boosters are always on, and you get the privilege of your entire health bar. That just spirals back into burn being tuned restrictively in PF1E. It seems like it was balanced around using touch attack elements, because if you don't and dare to not max elemental overflow then your baseline is really lacking.


Artificial 20 wrote:
Soul isn't so bad, since your accuracy and (reduced) damage boosters are always on, and you get the privilege of your entire health bar.

The health in practice wasn't much different [maxed con +6 vs non-maxed con+ nothing] for them so it was really just all lose [-2 hit (with boosted stats), -12 damage (with boosted stats) and once again -12 stat points and the missing miss chance]. Believe me, I tried the archetypes. I tried the base class. Burn sucks the fun out of the base class for me and the savage beatdown and robbery of abilities that where there to keep you competitive did the same with the archetype that avoided burn.

Artificial 20 wrote:
That just spirals back into burn being tuned restrictively in PF1E. It seems like it was balanced around using touch attack elements, because if you don't and dare to not max elemental overflow then your baseline is really lacking.

I don't know that it was touch AC so much [guns targeted it after all] but more that the class dared to key off of con. That and there was a need to insert some way to make a kind of encounter and/or at will ability like Focus does in PF2.


graystone wrote:
The health in practice wasn't much different [maxed con +6 vs non-maxed con+ nothing] for them...

I agree with your other points, but about +5 HP per level is quite a big difference. Were the kineticists you see fighting at range and not taking hits? Cus that health really helps if front-lining, e.g. a kinetic blader.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

PF2 is a new edition with fundamentally new mechanics. None of the classes really match their PF1 counterparts entirely. Fighters no longer get more feats than anyone else and are no longer armor specialists. Rangers look more like PF1 slayers than PF2 rangers. Bards are no longer gishes. Investigators are significantly less Alchemical. Swashbucklers have an entirely new mechanical conceit. Paladins have a new name, variable alignments and are tanks instead of DPR machines. Witches no longer have a unique spell list and no longer specialize in a variety of at-will hexes.

So why would the kineticist be any different?

TBH, the PF1 Kineticist was a fun, but still kind of flawed class... so I think a lot of people just aren't really beholden to any particular class feature so much as the idea of the kineticist. From that perspective, arguing over the nuances of burn, whether they should use handwraps or spell attacks, and so on and so forth are all kind of distractions and unimportant.

Liberty's Edge

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Squiggit wrote:

PF2 is a new edition with fundamentally new mechanics. None of the classes really match their PF1 counterparts entirely. Fighters no longer get more feats than anyone else and are no longer armor specialists. Rangers look more like PF1 slayers than PF2 rangers. Bards are no longer gishes. Investigators are significantly less Alchemical. Swashbucklers have an entirely new mechanical conceit. Paladins have a new name, variable alignments and are tanks instead of DPR machines. Witches no longer have a unique spell list and no longer specialize in a variety of at-will hexes.

So why would the kineticist be any different?

TBH, the PF1 Kineticist was a fun, but still kind of flawed class... so I think a lot of people just aren't really beholden to any particular class feature so much as the idea of the kineticist. From that perspective, arguing over the nuances of burn, whether they should use handwraps or spell attacks, and so on and so forth are all kind of distractions and unimportant.

It just occurred to me that maybe people are so keen on clarifying what they expect from the Kineticist simply because they do not want the class to become the new Witch.


Artificial 20 wrote:
I agree with your other points, but about +5 HP per level is quite a big difference. Were the kineticists you see fighting at range and not taking hits? Cus that health really helps if front-lining, e.g. a kinetic blader.

With the Underwhelming Soul, there wasn't much incentive to melee: you don't get bonuses to physical stats, only get light shields and work off cha... So yeah, they where ranged. As to the +5... It's -7 hp to max out burn and +3 hp for size bonuses and a +3 for a belt which just there is a -1/level: then you don't have to max out con so you'll raise dex or cha before con so you're likely at least 1 lower.. So, yeah. About the same:

Also, when I said [maxed con +6 vs non-maxed con+ nothing] I mean a base kineticist con 18 +6 size bonus + 6 belt + level ups possible while the underwheming soul will want to max their attack stat + cha so it's unlikely to max con and even less to boost. I hope you didn't think I means a 10 con with "non-maxed con+ nothing".


Artificial 20 wrote:
I agree with your other points, but about +5 HP per level is quite a big difference. Were the kineticists you see fighting at range and not taking hits? Cus that health really helps if front-lining, e.g. a kinetic blader.

With the Underwhelming Soul, there wasn't much incentive to melee: you don't get bonuses to physical stats, only get light shields and work off cha... So yeah, they where ranged. As to the +5... It's -7 hp to max out burn and +3 hp for size bonuses and a +3 for a belt which just there is a -1/level: then you don't have to max out con so you'll raise dex or cha before con so you're likely at least 1 lower.. So, yeah. About the same:

Also, when I said [maxed con +6 vs non-maxed con+ nothing] I mean a base kineticist con 18 +6 size bonus + 6 belt + level ups possible while the underwheming soul will want to max their attack stat + cha so it's unlikely to max con and even less to boost so maybe a con 14 and maybe Belt of Physical Might/Physical Perfection.


Thanks for the answers so far. I think I get it although it does make me sad that what people want is the theme of the class not the actual class.

Regarding Underwhelming Soul it was a big trade off. You lose the ability to use all abilities if you don't spend time using gather power or infusion specialization, most of the all day utility talents, you could not boost your elemental defense beyond the basic. In exchange you didn't hurt yourself powering up kinetic blast and use Cha for damage/saves. I can see why someone would choose it, but its also highly restricted and lacks some of what makes kineticist fun (being able to choose when you want to trigger abilities).

Regarding overflow the basic ability to gain +1 attack/damage was the same for base and overwhelming soul. But spending burn gives 1 stat each the choice of +2, +4, or +6. The cost usually spent in elemental defense (which could be very useful) or all day utility talents (which again could be very useful). So a ranged kineticist might do +6 con +4 dex while a melee might go for +6 con +4 str, all while getting some impressive ability.


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The Raven Black wrote:
Squiggit wrote:

PF2 is a new edition with fundamentally new mechanics. None of the classes really match their PF1 counterparts entirely. Fighters no longer get more feats than anyone else and are no longer armor specialists. Rangers look more like PF1 slayers than PF2 rangers. Bards are no longer gishes. Investigators are significantly less Alchemical. Swashbucklers have an entirely new mechanical conceit. Paladins have a new name, variable alignments and are tanks instead of DPR machines. Witches no longer have a unique spell list and no longer specialize in a variety of at-will hexes.

So why would the kineticist be any different?

TBH, the PF1 Kineticist was a fun, but still kind of flawed class... so I think a lot of people just aren't really beholden to any particular class feature so much as the idea of the kineticist. From that perspective, arguing over the nuances of burn, whether they should use handwraps or spell attacks, and so on and so forth are all kind of distractions and unimportant.

It just occurred to me that maybe people are so keen on clarifying what they expect from the Kineticist simply because they do not want the class to become the new Witch.

Yes I would hate it if kineticist becomes the new witch/alchemist. I want the very best possible kineticist that the game can possibly handle.


Squiggit wrote:
PF2 is a new edition with fundamentally new mechanics. None of the classes really match their PF1 counterparts entirely. Fighters no longer get more feats than anyone else and are no longer armor specialists. Rangers look more like PF1 slayers than PF2 rangers. Bards are no longer gishes. Investigators are significantly less Alchemical. Swashbucklers have an entirely new mechanical conceit. Paladins have a new name, variable alignments and are tanks instead of DPR machines. Witches no longer have a unique spell list and no longer specialize in a variety of at-will hexes.

I agree with the thrust of your post, though point of order ... I think fighters do still get more feats than anyone else, mostly thanks to their Fighter's Flexibility class feature granting them an extra two, possibly three at level twenty. It stuck out to me because it's probably my favorite aspect of the fighter; I like being able to switch up tactics on the daily.


Temperans wrote:
Regarding overflow the basic ability to gain +1 attack/damage was the same for base and overwhelming soul

Not quite: "She also receives a bonus on damage rolls with her kinetic blast equal to double the bonus on attack rolls." So it even loses out in terms of the very basics.


Perpdepog wrote:
Squiggit wrote:
PF2 is a new edition with fundamentally new mechanics. None of the classes really match their PF1 counterparts entirely. Fighters no longer get more feats than anyone else and are no longer armor specialists. Rangers look more like PF1 slayers than PF2 rangers. Bards are no longer gishes. Investigators are significantly less Alchemical. Swashbucklers have an entirely new mechanical conceit. Paladins have a new name, variable alignments and are tanks instead of DPR machines. Witches no longer have a unique spell list and no longer specialize in a variety of at-will hexes.
I agree with the thrust of your post, though point of order ... I think fighters do still get more feats than anyone else, mostly thanks to their Fighter's Flexibility class feature granting them an extra two, possibly three at level twenty. It stuck out to me because it's probably my favorite aspect of the fighter; I like being able to switch up tactics on the daily.

Yep, Fighters still kept their "most feats and most weapon bonuses". While also taking over the Brawler's "most flexible feat useage". Bards still kept the most buffs/debuffs and most knowledgable. Clerics kept the most healing. Monks kept the most mobility and easiest multi-attack. They also kept most of their monk powers.

The ones who keep losing out are the non-core classes (outside of wizard and alchemist). Chances are that Kineticist will lose out a lot, which is why I wanted to know the reason people were asking for other class mechanics while saying they want kineticist.


graystone wrote:
Temperans wrote:
Regarding overflow the basic ability to gain +1 attack/damage was the same for base and overwhelming soul
Not quite: "She also receives a bonus on damage rolls with her kinetic blast equal to double the bonus on attack rolls." So it even loses out in terms of the very basics.

The basic for basic is +1 to attack +2 to damage. The basic for overwhelming soul is +1 to attack +1 to damage. You lose out of 5 damage at high level which is effectively insignificant when you are dealing +10d6+Con. The real loss ia the lack of anti crit/sneak attack and the inability to boost elemental defense.


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I assume a lot people expect when and if the kinetesist comes out for it to be fairly far removed from the 1e class, stripped of its unique resources pools and a lot of its flexibility like the summoner was.

For me when I talk about what I hope for the kineticist I am mainly talking about what would be close enough for me and what would fill a similar thematic nitch.


Temperans wrote:
The basic for basic is +1 to attack +2 to damage. The basic for overwhelming soul is +1 to attack +1 to damage. You lose out of 5 damage at high level which is effectively insignificant when you are dealing +10d6+Con. The real loss ia the lack of anti crit/sneak attack and the inability to boost elemental defense.

Don't forget the 12 stat points...


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Temperans wrote:
Thanks for the answers so far. I think I get it although it does make me sad that what people want is the theme of the class not the actual class.

That's just realistic given that no class came to PF2 completely the same. Kineticist as a class has more bits that are unlikely to translate than most classes so people are trying to distill the class down to a core that can be made to fit PF2. If you want exactly the PF1 class, I suspect that you will have to play Pf1 or attempt the conversion yourself.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Temperans wrote:
Perpdepog wrote:
Squiggit wrote:
PF2 is a new edition with fundamentally new mechanics. None of the classes really match their PF1 counterparts entirely. Fighters no longer get more feats than anyone else and are no longer armor specialists. Rangers look more like PF1 slayers than PF2 rangers. Bards are no longer gishes. Investigators are significantly less Alchemical. Swashbucklers have an entirely new mechanical conceit. Paladins have a new name, variable alignments and are tanks instead of DPR machines. Witches no longer have a unique spell list and no longer specialize in a variety of at-will hexes.
I agree with the thrust of your post, though point of order ... I think fighters do still get more feats than anyone else, mostly thanks to their Fighter's Flexibility class feature granting them an extra two, possibly three at level twenty. It stuck out to me because it's probably my favorite aspect of the fighter; I like being able to switch up tactics on the daily.

Yep, Fighters still kept their "most feats and most weapon bonuses". While also taking over the Brawler's "most flexible feat useage". Bards still kept the most buffs/debuffs and most knowledgable. Clerics kept the most healing. Monks kept the most mobility and easiest multi-attack. They also kept most of their monk powers.

The ones who keep losing out are the non-core classes (outside of wizard and alchemist). Chances are that Kineticist will lose out a lot, which is why I wanted to know the reason people were asking for other class mechanics while saying they want kineticist.

Eh, those are pretty broad themes compared to hyper specific mechanical constructs like Burn. The main thrust of a kineticist was "wield elemental power without being a spellcaster" which could easily be carried forward without Burn. That would compare well to Bards "having buffs" etc.


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I don’t think of Kineticist as the “Burn” class, I think of it as the “elemental blasts and weapons” class.


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To me, Kineticist was the “burn” class because it was very hard to find something else that could do the “push yourself beyond the limit” trope. The elemental stuff always just seemed like a vehicle for that, especially since “aether” was just telekineses and they moved towards weirder stuff like void and wood that aren’t really elements. Not to mention there was plenty of support for elementalist characters elsewhere.

That said, they did really lean into the elemental stuff so I can see why a lot of people gravitated towards the class for that reason. I think as long as they at least include the option for pushing yourself too far it would scratch that itch for me (hopefully with something less obtuse than the 1e burn mechanics).


graystone wrote:
Artificial 20 wrote:
I agree with your other points, but about +5 HP per level is quite a big difference. Were the kineticists you see fighting at range and not taking hits? Cus that health really helps if front-lining, e.g. a kinetic blader.

With the Underwhelming Soul, there wasn't much incentive to melee: you don't get bonuses to physical stats, only get light shields and work off cha... So yeah, they where ranged. As to the +5... It's -7 hp to max out burn and +3 hp for size bonuses and a +3 for a belt which just there is a -1/level: then you don't have to max out con so you'll raise dex or cha before con so you're likely at least 1 lower.. So, yeah. About the same:

Also, when I said [maxed con +6 vs non-maxed con+ nothing] I mean a base kineticist con 18 +6 size bonus + 6 belt + level ups possible while the underwheming soul will want to max their attack stat + cha so it's unlikely to max con and even less to boost so maybe a con 14 and maybe Belt of Physical Might/Physical Perfection.

You posted twice, probably due to board issues, so I apologise if I quoted the wrong one. I'm trying to follow but think things are getting mixed up.

First of all, kinetic blade and its sequeals apply the attack roll bonus, but not the damage bonus of elemental overflow, and the same goes for the Soul archetype, so the Soul basically dodges one of its losses like this.

A kinetic blade Soul can also ignore cha, as the damage bump is not much.

Next, I'm having a hard time following your maths. It's -7 HP per level to max out burn from level 16 and on, agreed. The size bonuses can help mitigate that to -4 HP per level, although at that point you're putting +6 into con, and thus only +4 into dex, so you're losing a point of AC, attack rolls, initiative etc. which would be nice to keep, so -5 HP per level was if you went +6 dex / +4 con, instead of shoring up nonlethal.

So whether it's -4 or -5 HP per level, we both seem to envision a base kineticist spending a load of resources to boost con, and the Soul not doing so. This means the Soul will probably end up closer in HP than +4 or +5 per level, but you don't seem to be using the resources this frees up? I apologise if I've just missed it, but I'll try to run the numbers.

Base Kineticist
>Dex: 14 base + 4 size bonus + Belt of Physical Might (+6) = 24 (+7)
>Con: 17 base + 6 size bonus + Belt of Physical Might (+6) + 5 boosts = 34 (+12)
>Attack/AC/Etc. Bonus From Dex: +7
>HP Bonus From Con: 12 - 7 burn = +5 per level

Soul Of Debatable Whelming
>Dex: Start of 17 + Belt of Physical Might (+6) + 5 boosts = 28 (+9)
>Con: Start of 14 + Belt of Physical Might (+6) = 20 (+5)
>Attack/AC/Etc. Bonus From Dex: +9
>HP Bonus From Con: +5 per level

I've tried to use honest starting ability score values, then swap them between dex and con to keep things even. Again maybe I'm simply missing something, but it seems to me a kinetic blade Soul comes out ahead in Dex by a couple of points and equal in HP. That's more AC = more general survivability, and better finesse attack roll = more DPS, while the base kineticist has a bit more damage (it adds con to kinetic blade damage, but not elemental overflow), and of course an incredible fortitude save.

Just as trying to play PF2E like it was PF1E can lead to poor tactics and unintentionally shooting one's own foot, I think trying to build a Soul with the sensibilities of the base kineticist can handicap oneself unnecessarily. It's far from overwhelming, but in some cases is alright.


Artificial 20 wrote:
You posted twice, probably due to board issues, so I apologise if I quoted the wrong one.

Didn't even notice it posted twice or I'd have deleted one: the site been weird lately.

Artificial 20 wrote:

First of all, kinetic blade and its sequeals apply the attack roll bonus, but not the damage bonus of elemental overflow, and the same goes for the Soul archetype, so the Soul basically dodges one of its losses like this.

A kinetic blade Soul can also ignore cha, as the damage bump is not much.

Sure but kinetic blade takes burn to use so you can't even use it if you move and you're limited to single attacks even if you don't move. The only way it really works is Infusion Specialization at 5th and that makes 1-4 quite painful. This also means that whip, rush and whirlwind have to wait until 8th or 11th... And all of this assumes you don't want any substance infusions that would want cha and don't care to boost your will saves [which is your LOW save].

Artificial 20 wrote:
Next, I'm having a hard time following your maths. It's -7 HP per level to max out burn from level 16 and on, agreed. The size bonuses can help mitigate that to -4 HP per level, although at that point you're putting +6 into con, and thus only +4 into dex, so you're losing a point of AC, attack rolls, initiative etc. which would be nice to keep, so -5 HP per level was if you went +6 dex / +4 con, instead of shoring up nonlethal.

At that level, and at range, initiative is the most worrying lose but it's +1 to a better save [failed con can kill/main/disable where ref is usually damage] and +1 save DC's and since you're making a single big hit instead of multiple attacks [unless you're doing flurry for some reason], the +1 hit isn't really noticeable IMO. And you're shoring up hp not temp hp. So I'll stick with -7 and +3 for con and your belt for con and dex [+6] for another +3.

Artificial 20 wrote:
So whether it's -4 or -5 HP per level, we both seem to envision a base kineticist spending a load of resources to boost con, and the Soul not doing so.

You are correct in that I assume that the pc is raising their main stats and not raising others.

Artificial 20 wrote:
Soul will probably end up closer in HP than +4 or +5 per level, but you don't seem to be using the resources this frees up?

Underwhelming needs a head piece for bonus cha and a belt for dex and still needs a bit of will save: even the +4 con seems generous.

Artificial 20 wrote:
I've tried to use honest starting ability score values, then swap them between dex and con to keep things even.

And that's why I have a disagreement: underwhelming soul needs cha more than con and needs wisdom as much as con. So imo, you're skewing it into con when the class really doesn't go that direction anymore with the archetype.

Artificial 20 wrote:
Again maybe I'm simply missing something, but it seems to me a kinetic blade Soul comes out ahead in Dex by a couple of points and equal in HP.

I personally can see going kinetic blade with that archetype as you have to go several levels where you can't move and do your infusion and then have to wait several MORE levels if you want to do the upgrade in the tree... Could you do it? sure, but that sounds almost as fun as playing WITH burn... :P You'd need to take both underwhelming AND Kinetic Knight to make it work and they don't mix [both change skills].

Artificial 20 wrote:
Just as trying to play PF2E like it was PF1E can lead to poor tactics and unintentionally shooting one's own foot, I think trying to build a Soul with the sensibilities of the base kineticist can handicap oneself unnecessarily.

I'm genuinely curious how you came to this conclusion when you're raising the same stats when the main stats changed... That and waiting until 5th so that you can move and your blade seems like a big shot to the foot.


I'd like to start by saying I'm enjoying this discussion, it's engaging.

graystone wrote:
Sure but kinetic blade takes burn to use so you can't even use it if you move and you're limited to single attacks even if you don't move. The only way it really works is Infusion Specialization at 5th and that makes 1-4 quite painful. This also means that whip, rush and whirlwind have to wait until 8th or 11th... And all of this assumes you don't want any substance infusions that would want cha and don't care to boost your will saves [which is your LOW save].

Kinetic blade does take burn to use, which can be a bit annoying in the first few levels, like you say. However the kinetic blader doesn't lose their unmodified blast, and can still fire ranged shots where unable to blade, so they have a solid fallback to get through those early levels.

Like you've said, that all goes away at level 5. At level 8 you can also get a 1-point infusion without burn whenever you don't need to use whip.

Will saves are an equal concern for both vanilla and Soul kineticist, so it shouldn't impact their comparison since they both need the same help.

We both agree on the next 2 parts you've quoted, so I'll move past that.

graystone wrote:
Underwhelming needs a head piece for bonus cha and a belt for dex and still needs a bit of will save: even the +4 con seems generous.

Again, I feel cha can be de-prioritised, as the bonus to damage is quite minor as kinetic blasts scale, and it's only important for infusion DCs.

Now, save-based infusions can be nice, but just doing solid vanilla DPS like a martial is still useful. If you treat any save-based infusion as a neat extra, like crit fails on saves in PF2E, and use the DPS of your kinetic blade attacks as your baseline, the numbers can be quite solid.

graystone wrote:
And that's why I have a disagreement: underwhelming soul needs cha more than con and needs wisdom as much as con. So imo, you're skewing it into con when the class really doesn't go that direction anymore with the archetype.

We do differ here. Why does Soul need cha more than con? So far as I can tell it gets cha to damage with kinetic blasts, and the save DCs of some wild talents. For some builds that will be significant, but other builds won't use or depend on cha-based saves, and the damage lost from low cha is rather minor as kinetic blast scales. I think saying Soul "needs" cha is overstating things, as there are viable builds that doesn't apply to.

If it helps, imagine this kinetic blade Soul like a fighter (in PF1E) in terms of combat purpose. They swing around a big stick of damage, and if all they do in a turn is sharply lower enemy HP, it's a successful turn.

graystone wrote:
I personally can see going kinetic blade with that archetype as you have to go several levels where you can't move and do your infusion and then have to wait several MORE levels if you want to do the upgrade in the tree... Could you do it? sure, but that sounds almost as fun as playing WITH burn... :P You'd need to take both underwhelming AND Kinetic Knight to make it work and they don't mix [both change skills].

I again agree that not being able to move and kinetic blade makes for a slow start, but I think you might be overstating the problem. First, as I said you still have your ranged blast, which might be a little weaker than a base kineticist's, but not by a crushing amount. Second, if your enemy is melee-based they will likely close with you, so in play you're probably firing one ranged blast almost as well as a base kineticist's, then the enemy moves in (and you've still attacked them, so it's not as if you're conceding first strike), and then you can blade them handily.

graystone wrote:
I'm genuinely curious how you came to this conclusion when you're raising the same stats when the main stats changed... That and waiting until 5th so that you can move and your blade seems like a big shot to the foot.

What I meant is, with a base kineticist you raise dex and con because of the class synergies with them, not simply for the reasons everyone likes to have dex and con. You may raise con higher than any other PF1E class.

With Soul I think it's viable to build more like a finesse fighter, with a high priority on your attack roll stat (dex), but not emphasising your damage stat so much (str for most martials, cha for Soul), and investing in con like a front-line fighter, not as something you need to maximise.

For example, a 20 point-buy human Soul at level 1:
>Str: 11
>Dex: 17 (including +2 racial)
>Con: 14
>Int: 12
>Wis: 14
>Cha: 10

This build ignores charisma entirely. It has a solid con and wis score for a martial character, matches my previous mapping for dex and con, a bit of int for skill ranks that can be placed elsewhere if needed, and a spare point in str for carrying capacity, but str and / or cha could be dropped if you want even more elsewhere, or to make this 15-point buy.

I think the difference in our perspective is that if a Soul never forces a single save, but slings high vanilla DPS like a lot of martial builds, and can do so all day, I consider that a viable build, so I don't feel a need to boost cha, which in turn allows me to pump other ability scores.


Artificial 20 wrote:
...

The reason "overwhelming soul" (the name of the archetype) needs Cha is because having 0 effects is literally the most boring possible way to build a kineticist. The ability to add the effects you want is what makes kineticisr fun and you are throwing it away by straight up ignoring that entire side of the class. All while you straight up lose more damage in the process.

Overwhelming soul is what I imagine the class will work if you remove burn period. They will deal damage, maybe have a handful of special options, and then nothing. Compared to the default where you can choose to not use burn and get the same benefits except the attack bonus. But you can still focus on being super tanky and having special effects.

********************

So question if the design for new kineticist does not matter as long as it can blast. Why can't there be a default based around its original theme of taking damage and a class archetype that removes that ability?

PF2 has no attack or stat boosters (ignoring Alchemist) so there would be no overflow to separate having burn or not. The only difference would be how much access people have to infusions/talents, which Paizo could tailor in a number of ways.


Temperans wrote:
Artificial 20 wrote:
...
The reason "overwhelming soul" (the name of the archetype) needs Cha is because having 0 effects is literally the most boring possible way to build a kineticist. The ability to add the effects you want is what makes kineticisr fun and you are throwing it away by straight up ignoring that entire side of the class. All while you straight up lose more damage in the process.

It needn't be so all-or-nothing. You're still able to apply infusions with effects, their save DCs will just be lower so they'll land less often. I'd also argue you gain damage, not lose it, since +2 dex over base kineticist = higher attack rolls = more attacks and iteratives hitting = more damage.


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Artificial 20 wrote:
Temperans wrote:
Artificial 20 wrote:
...
The reason "overwhelming soul" (the name of the archetype) needs Cha is because having 0 effects is literally the most boring possible way to build a kineticist. The ability to add the effects you want is what makes kineticisr fun and you are throwing it away by straight up ignoring that entire side of the class. All while you straight up lose more damage in the process.
It needn't be so all-or-nothing. You're still able to apply infusions with effects, their save DCs will just be lower so they'll land less often. I'd also argue you gain damage, not lose it, since +2 dex over base kineticist = higher attack rolls = more attacks and iteratives hitting = more damage.

Its not. You are severely undervalueing the size bonus, free fortification effect, the value of higher save DC, and the value of having straight up more abilities available with stronger effects.


Temperans wrote:
Artificial 20 wrote:
Temperans wrote:
Artificial 20 wrote:
...
The reason "overwhelming soul" (the name of the archetype) needs Cha is because having 0 effects is literally the most boring possible way to build a kineticist. The ability to add the effects you want is what makes kineticisr fun and you are throwing it away by straight up ignoring that entire side of the class. All while you straight up lose more damage in the process.
It needn't be so all-or-nothing. You're still able to apply infusions with effects, their save DCs will just be lower so they'll land less often. I'd also argue you gain damage, not lose it, since +2 dex over base kineticist = higher attack rolls = more attacks and iteratives hitting = more damage.
Its not. You are severely undervalueing the size bonus, free fortification effect, the value of higher save DC, and the value of having straight up more abilities available with stronger effects.

Incorrect. I've precisely valued the size bonus in this thread. To recap:

>Con bonus: Works out to the same HP as Soul, so a fort save and DC boost
>Dex bonus: Lower than a Soul by +4 dex (+2 modifier)
>Str bonus: Not useful to either build

The fortification effect, higher save DCs, and having straight up more abilities available with stronger effects are all excellent benefits of the base kineticist. I have not said otherwise, so your comment is moot.

What I have said and proven is the Overwhelming Soul supports a limited range of builds to a fairly viable level. Not so strongly that it can't be ignored by those who wish to do so, but enough for players of a more open mind. Hopefully PF2E's incarnation of the class will make good use of the system's existing strengths, such as proficiency tiers, to offer a fun and accessible design without the original's high learning curve.


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Artificial 20 wrote:

Like you've said, that all goes away at level 5. At level 8 you can also get a 1-point infusion without burn whenever you don't need to use whip.

Will saves are an equal concern for both vanilla and Soul kineticist, so it shouldn't impact their comparison since they both need the same help.

IMO, it doesn't go away at 5 if you're building a melee build as the infusions that build off of blade require more burn so you have to push them off till later and later at 8th and 11th: again, can you do it? I guess but the opposite of fun IMO. And to will saves, it in the starting stats for me: You're going all in on con as a secondary and I'm evening out con and wis with points left after your main stats: ignoring wisdom when you're mixing it up in melee to me is different [and not great] than if you're 120' away.

Artificial 20 wrote:
If it helps, imagine this kinetic blade Soul like a fighter (in PF1E) in terms of combat purpose. They swing around a big stick of damage, and if all they do in a turn is sharply lower enemy HP, it's a successful turn.

My problem if that for a lot of rounds, it isn't doing that as it have to move and isn't doing it's thing or downgrading it's thing because it had to move and on top of thing would be able to attack and do better at ranged. Running up to your and doing a mighty... gather energy isn't an exciting or useful round.

Artificial 20 wrote:
I again agree that not being able to move and kinetic blade makes for a slow start, but I think you might be overstating the problem. First, as I said you still have your ranged blast, which might be a little weaker than a base kineticist's, but not by a crushing amount. Second, if your enemy is melee-based they will likely close with you, so in play you're probably firing one ranged blast almost as well as a base kineticist's, then the enemy moves in (and you've still attacked them, so it's not as if you're conceding first strike), and then you can blade them handily.

Disagree with the slow start but it's slow all through the levels until you're into your into double digit levels. Second, if you're a range, you aren't moving as much as you can, maybe taking more rounds than is you just move and you're also sometimes forces to either move and do nothing or attack ranged and draw an AoO. And ALL of this is assuming you aren't attacked and disrupted while you're in melee combat trying to gather energy... IMO, this is all a recipe for disappointment.

Artificial 20 wrote:
I consider that a viable build

This is where we disagree as it doesn't seem terribly viable to me.

Artificial 20 wrote:
It needn't be so all-or-nothing. You're still able to apply infusions with effects, their save DCs will just be lower so they'll land less often. I'd also argue you gain damage, not lose it, since +2 dex over base kineticist = higher attack rolls = more attacks and iteratives hitting = more damage.

It's MUCH, MUCH easier to find a way to get a better to hit than it is to find a way to raise your DC. When you start with a 10 in the stat that governs the DC, you might as well say you're fishing for them to roll a 1. Sure it CAN work but...


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Honestly, if this thread was about 'changing' it in general to find a stronger thematic or mechanical identity that works in pf2e, I think I'd be able to explain it-- but largely I agree in the sense that I'm not crazy about the idea of just pushing it to be a monk.

One of the problems 5e introduced into the zeitgeist is a kind of thought terminating cliche about reflavoring, or having faith that an extremely simple take on supporting something is enough to where someone's idea is "well if we let you shoot a basic elemental blast attack in place of a monk's normal unarmed attack that'll be the path of least resistance to considering the concept as supported as it needs to be" (and i say this with no awareness of who was suggesting that) its why the Mystic of that game died on the vine in favor of subclasses that have some neat psionic flavor, but doesn't full support the psionics concept, there were even people that were like "well, we don't even need subclasses, just reflavor completely normal magic."

I think part of it is that conditioning from the biggest game right now, the community has a very strong sense of "I don't have patience for mechanically complex support, we should reduce things to as few distinct options as possible to make it easy to grok, even at the expense of texture, reflavoring is 'good enough' for me and we can tell others its 'good enough' for them too." We get some of that, even though arguably Pathfinder 2e's meaningful market niche is *not* doing that, and helping players to feel like their favorite concept is lavishly supported-- done well it would create a lot of brand loyalty where going to something like 5e would feel like you're giving up a bunch of beloved support.

If we were trying to make Kineticist out of Monk, it would have to be class archetype, and honestly, I think it would need some kind of resource mechanic-- focus points or something, for encounter power tier attacks that you decide what to use them on, it also could use some element shaping ability where you can use your element in cones and bursts and lines and such, which even the Elemental Sorcerer does a passable job with by granting spells and changing their elements. It would be weird and messy because you would retain access to Monk feats like the normal stance attacks, unless it did something really weird like trade away the monk's unarmed progression for blast progression or something.

I do think it should change in some ways-- like I think at this point it makes more sense for it to straight up become primally powered, since the community has a much more nature centric touchstone for the concept in the form of ATLA, which has become ubiquitous and occult is fairly anti-blasting-- it doesn't strictly matter since its not a 'proper spellcaster' you could give it bespoke blasting and just say 'these are occult abilities, don't sweat it'


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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

The more I hear people describe wanting a class that delivers on drawing on the last of your strength to increase your power level the more I'd like to see that delivered as well. Whether or not that's in the form of the Kineticist doesn't matter so much to me.


nephandys wrote:
The more I hear people describe wanting a class that delivers on drawing on the last of your strength to increase your power level the more I'd like to see that delivered as well. Whether or not that's in the form of the Kineticist doesn't matter so much to me.

Because that kineticist was that and people are saying that they don't want that is that I made this thread. It just didn't make sense to me, but reading what Magic Sword is saying that a lot of people just want to remove all the complexity I can understand it even if I hate the logic.


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I will say that when it comes to the PF1e version of Kineticist, usually Burn is the biggest complaint I see against the class. In my own group there are people who refuse to even try the class because of the feeling of having to hurt yourself to use any of your abilities. Even if there are tons of ways around it if you actually look for them, and I have personally pointed several of them out, sometimes they just can't get past that initial feel and just passed on the class as a whole.

As such, can't say I blame people for not wanting that to be literally the focus for a PF2e version. Especially when we have a much simpler and less self-debilitating alternative in the form of Focus Points, which I can't help but feel were at least in part inspired by Burn in the first place. And really, while it is subjective, the Burn mechanic never felt central to PF1e!Kineticist to me anyways, it was all about the Blasts and Utility abilities for me.

As for making Blasts an Unarmed Attack, I think part of that is just trying to avoid the thing that many caster spell attacks (and in truth PF1e's Kineticist for far too long of a time after its release) suffered from of just not having a good attack boost otherwise. That +1-3 bonus from runes is pretty important, given how much every point matters in attacks this edition. Are there other ways around that? Of course. But it remains an important point of consideration. As such, people going for the option that makes it inherently supported makes sense. It also plays off the fact that we know already how much damage a martial can put out, and thus takes a bit of the edge off worrying about how much balancing would need to be done to make sure your blasts feel strong enough, without having to worry about spell levels and heightening and how all of that interacts with dozens of other things (like infusions).

As for Resource-less-ness... to many that was the appeal of PF1e's Kineticist. The only resources PF1e's Kineticist had were HP (which there is no avoiding) and Burn, which (despite the misgivings some had) could be fairly easily worked around, or even outright ignored if you took the right archetype. I'd say being Resource-less is pretty central to the concept. The Elementalist part is a bit trickier, but, like, I can't speak for everyone but in my experience the A:tLA comparisons aren't new, pretty sure they were being bandied around back when the PF1e version was first announced. Most people familiar with the class are probably going to know the basic version, which had Fire, Water, Earth, Air, and Aether, the four elements and a bit of Telekinesis thrown on for good measure and a bit more Psychic connection. Sure they added to it later, with Wood (which actually is one of the elements in some Eastern traditions), Void (Gravity Manipulation is cool and fits just as well as the Telekinesis, and Negative Energy is a good balance to Wood's Positive), Blood (which was really just a subset of water... and even A:tLA comparers should acknowledge that)... but the core of the class was still the four elements and a bit of Telekinesis. Heck, if you look at the composites, any combination of the core options has a cool Composite except adding Aether to something which is just a fairly generic boost so it even kinda feels a tad separated from the elemental options, which feel more fleshed out. So can you really blame people for seeing Elementalist as pretty core to the concept?


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I think the problem is that managing an entirely separate resource pool is more of a PF1 design style than a PF2 design style. Even things like quicksilver mutagen are more one-and-done, you take your damage once and you don't have to recheck it. Panache, as well, was changed from being a pool to a binary on-off switch.

I do want to see the general flavour kept, but I think the implementation can easily be reworked a little to fit more into PF2's mechanical style.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

The problem with doing it with an archetype is that it means it's not really integrated into the rest of your features in any way and has to be compressed into a couple of feats, rather than something more significant.

Like, I agree it's not something that should be the property of a single class, but it's also something D&D has done an absolutely terrible job of emulating. The PF1 kineticist isn't just the best class in PF for it, it's basically the only option in all of d20 that really pulls off the concept.

Archetypes just aren't good at adding these sweeping fixtures to characters, they're too insignificant and whenever someone so far has suggested replicating some major concept with archetype feats it tends to fall flat.

edit: replying to the post immediately below mine because Paizo's forums are weird.

Liberty's Edge

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I said it in the other Kineticist thread and I will repeat it here. I think "pushing yourself beyond your limits" should not belong to a class. An archetype doing this would be far better IMO.


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The Raven Black wrote:
I said it in the other Kineticist thread and I will repeat it here. I think "pushing yourself beyond your limits" should not belong to a class. An archetype doing this would be far better IMO.

Agreed, especially since we already have a PF2 class that has a 'push your limit' mechanic in the oracle.

Squiggit wrote:
The problem with doing it with an archetype is that it means it's not really integrated into the rest of your features in any way and has to be compressed into a couple of feats, rather than something more significant.

IMO, that's not a problem but a bonus.

Squiggit wrote:
Like, I agree it's not something that should be the property of a single class, but it's also something D&D has done an absolutely terrible job of emulating. The PF1 kineticist isn't just the best class in PF for it, it's basically the only option in all of d20 that really pulls off the concept.

IMO, that just points out why it'd be better as feats instead of a set class feature for PF2: if there was a set of burn feats in the main class, ANY class in PF2 could be a burn character by multiclassing for them if that's your thing.

Squiggit wrote:
Archetypes just aren't good at adding these sweeping fixtures to characters, they're too insignificant and whenever someone so far has suggested replicating some major concept with archetype feats it tends to fall flat.

Does it HAVE to be a sweeping fixture? Can't burn be features to get more focus for a cost? Does it have to be more integrated than that? IMO, that's pretty much what burn did in PF1.

PS: yeah, the website has been funky lately.


The PF1 burn was not an infinite resource, even if you could mitigate the cost. Nor was it usable with any ability with nothing to act as a conversion. You needed Elemental Ki feat turn burn into ki and that was added just to support the martial arts being a thing.

Archetypes being highly constricted and limited is indeed a problem when the kineticist is supposed to be built around that mechanic. That argument is to me like saying, "Swashbucklers should be very mobile, that's why Panache should be an archetype and not be at all related to the class". Or, "Barbarian is all about wielding large weapons therefore rage should not be a part of the class, instead make it an archetype so it interacts less with it". Does that not sound crazy?

Finally, the logic of "oh making it an archetype makes it better for other classes to get it" falls appart when you could literally say the exact same thing about every class. Why does Magus archetype lock you out for a minute? Why does Cleric archetype not give you a pool of heal spells? Why is it so hard to get increased proficiency from the Figter archetype? Because Paizo decided that those class's niche should be protected. But kineticists should be sacrificed?

*********************

I tried hard to not argue about the potential PF2 design im this thread buy that argument is just... I expected better.


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Temperans wrote:
Archetypes being highly constricted and limited is indeed a problem when the kineticist is supposed to be built around that mechanic.

That's the argument though: why does the PF2 version have to be shackled to it? There isn't a "supposed to" as PF2 classes aren't beholden to their PF1 mechanics.

Temperans wrote:
Does that not sound crazy?

Nope. I could use the exact same thing about an alchemists extracts/discoveries or a summoners summon monsters or evolution. Not all features must or even should make it to main features. To me the actual bending is FAR, FAR, FAR more important than punching myself only to keep my numbers competitive by blowing all my burn to max overflow: it NEVER felt like it was a real 'push your limit' mechanic but one to shore your numbers into a full BAB class and as a punishment for daring to have a con class.

Temperans wrote:
Finally, the logic of "oh making it an archetype makes it better for other classes to get it" falls appart when you could literally say the exact same thing about every class.

It only fails if you want that part of the class as part of the class: it makes perfect sense if you don't. That and it makes sense if you want a burn type archetype for other classes as it could be made universal: want to burn with your sorcerer? This could be made to do that.

Temperans wrote:
But kineticists should be sacrificed?

I don't think making hypothetical arguments about a hypothetical archetype for a hypothetical class is going to get us anywhere.

Temperans wrote:
I tried hard to not argue about the potential PF2 design im this thread buy that argument is just... I expected better.

I don't understand what you're trying to say here.

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