Why doesn't RAW allow a Rouge to use a Main-Gauche as a class proficient weapon?


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I had the idea to play a two-weapon PF2e Rogue character wielding what I considered to be the classic two-weapon combination: a rapier and a main-gauche. Then I discovered that the main-gauche is not available to a rogue by default, which surprised me. Then I spent a lot of time searching The Internets for reasons why the Rogue class should not be able to wield a main-gauche in PF2e without expending extra feats to do so, but so far I have found nothing. So...is there a game balance reason why the Rogue doesn't have the main-gauche available in PF2e as a class weapon by default?

Then I'm confused why parrying with a main-gauche should trigger an attack of opportunity. I mean, my character is already holding a rapier and a main-gauche, makes a first attack with the rapier, and a second attack with the main-gauche, then wants to use the main-gauche to parry attacks until her next turn. What is it about parrying with an already-in-hand main-gauche that causes it to draw an attack of opportunity?

In the end, I know I could use a dagger as the second weapon for the same agile trait and damage as the main-gauche, but I would lose the parrying trait. I find it hard to believe the main-gauche is mechanically unbalanced. I am just curious if there are rules-balancing reasons for this particular combination of rules (before I throw out the whole character design).

TIA for any insight you can provide :-)

EDIT: One last question: I know the rogue can take Weapon Proficiency general feat to become "trained" in martial weapons (so I could use the main-gauche at the Trained level), but I am unsure how I promote that skill level to Expert, Master, etc., since the main-gauche is not in the list of Rogue weapons that can be promoted with Weapon Tricks?


They did fix the parry trait at some point. It no longer provokes. Rogue is still stuck with simple weapons for the most part. Easiest path to martial proficiency is through ancestry feats but nothing specifically for a main gauche. There's a distinct gap in archetypes that make one handed martial weapons very awkward to build for with the simple weapon classes.


aobst128 wrote:
They did fix the parry trait at some point. It no longer provokes. Rogue is still stuck with simple weapons for the most part. Easiest path to martial proficiency is through ancestry feats but nothing specifically for a main gauche. There's a distinct gap in archetypes that make one handed martial weapons very awkward to build for with the simple weapon classes.

Thank you for pointing me in the direction of "they fixed the provoke AoO for parry trait" idea. I KNOW that one (technically unofficial) rule source I have been referencing still specifies that parry is an Interact action, but I just checked my printed copy of the rules (third printing) and the Interact trait has been removed from parry. My bad, I completely missed that. I will mention this to the unofficial rule source so they can fix their copy. Thanks again.

Now hopefully someone can enlighten me on the remainder of my question :-D


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Quote:
So...is there a game balance reason why the Rogue doesn't have the main-gauche available in PF2e as a class weapon by default?

Not really. Martial weapons are designed to be roughly comparable to each other to begin with. That's why they're all martial weapons.

Rogues simply don't have full martial proficiency, perhaps a legacy thing because they had similarly limited proficiency options in both 3.5 and PF1 (although in PF1 gaining a new weapon was very easy), although Paizo devs have (generally) said this is untrue of how PF2 was designed.

Paizo has never commented specifically on their reasoning for this decision regardless.

Quote:
I know the rogue can take Weapon Proficiency general feat to become "trained" in martial weapons (so I could use the main-gauche at the Trained level), but I am unsure how I promote that skill level to Expert, Master

You can't. There is no generalized way to gain full proficiency progression in a weapon.

There are ways to gain specific weapons, such as Unconventional Weaponry or other ancestry feats, but to my knowledge none of these apply to the Main Gauche.

Shadow Lodge

Presumably, Paizo wanted to future-proof the class and minimize the chances that weapons added in the future might cause issues (or just give future martial weapon designs a little more 'breathing room' by not having to worry about rogues easily 'abusing' them).


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Taja the Barbarian wrote:
Presumably, Paizo wanted to future-proof the class and minimize the chances that weapons added in the future might cause issues (or just give future martial weapon designs a little more 'breathing room' by not having to worry about rogues easily 'abusing' them).

Weird to have that concern only for rogues.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

The way PF2 groups class-based abilities is sometimes based on a narrative that is not what fits every players vision. In PF1, very few 2 weapon fighting characters had more than 4 levels in Rogue. Someone fighting in a rapier and main gauche style might have some levels in rogue but also probably some levels in a +1 BAB class and possibly a prestige class. PF2 classes work pretty differently.

Fighter and Ranger are pretty natural base classes for this build and don’t require any special feats to be slippery Dex based 2 weapon fighters, but you will also want some STR for carrying stuff, wearing armor and extra damage.

Swashbuckler can work very well too, but might need to archetype for the 2 weapon fighting.

I think the PF2 narrative for the rogue is that they are not really trained in complicated weapons of war or martial combat. A couple of legacy martial weapons slipped in to prevent riots, but I guess the main gauche was not seen generally as iconically for a skill focused back stabbed, as much as for a fencer or duelist.


Regarding "future-proofing" and "abuse"...from a game balance perspective, I completely agree with where I think you're going. Sometimes a player just needs to make hard choices. For example, if I want to play a Rogue, then can't have easy access to the (generally) heavier hitting martial weapons. But from purely a thematic perspective, since the Rogue already has access to a couple of roguish martial weapons (the rapier and sap), I guess it just feels like the main-gauche was forgotten about (can't imagine many classic fighters bothering to use it). Either that, or someone did the math and found the parry trait too powerful with all the other stuff a Rogue can do (compared to a dagger, for example). But I just don't see that.

Hmmm, perhaps there is no way to build the swashbuckling thief I am imagining in RAW.


jim lafflam wrote:
EDIT: One last question: I know the rogue can take Weapon Proficiency general feat to become "trained" in martial weapons (so I could use the main-gauche at the Trained level), but I am unsure how I promote that skill level to Expert, Master, etc., since the main-gauche is not in the list of Rogue weapons that can be promoted with Weapon Tricks?

You could get trained in it so you can use the parry but it wouldn't advance past that. A Nightstick [1d4 B, Hands 1, Simple, Group Club; Traits Agile, Finesse, Nonlethal, Parry, Uncommon] or Clan Dagger [1d4 P, Hands 1, Simple, Group Knife; Traits Agile, Dwarf, Parry, Uncommon, Versatile B] can be uses instead out of the box as both are simple. If you're going for the finesse option for attacking, Nightstick is your best bet. If it's just for parry, either will work.


graystone wrote:
jim lafflam wrote:
EDIT: One last question: I know the rogue can take Weapon Proficiency general feat to become "trained" in martial weapons (so I could use the main-gauche at the Trained level), but I am unsure how I promote that skill level to Expert, Master, etc., since the main-gauche is not in the list of Rogue weapons that can be promoted with Weapon Tricks?
You could get trained in it so you can use the parry but it wouldn't advance past that. A Nightstick [1d4 B, Hands 1, Simple, Group Club; Traits Agile, Finesse, Nonlethal, Parry, Uncommon] or Clan Dagger [1d4 P, Hands 1, Simple, Group Knife; Traits Agile, Dwarf, Parry, Uncommon, Versatile B] can be uses instead out of the box as both are simple. If you're going for the finesse option for attacking, Nightstick is your best bet. If it's just for parry, either will work.

Can you imaging Fritz Leiber's the Gray Mouser fighting with a nightstick named Cat's Claw? just joshing, but still lol :-D


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I think it was probably more of a narrative choice than mechanical game balance. As Greystone points out, you can get parry already. In fact, the PF2 rogue doesn’t have a whole lot of two weapon support, so a lot of the choice here might come down to secondary attacks you occasionally make, often with a different rune or damage type from your main weapon, or to have a maneuver trait you want to use often.

From your own description it sounds like the developers maybe see your character as more of a swashbuckler


Unicore wrote:

I think it was probably more of a narrative choice than mechanical game balance. As Greystone points out, you can get parry already. In fact, the PF2 rogue doesn’t have a whole lot of two weapon support, so a lot of the choice here might come down to secondary attacks you occasionally make, often with a different rune or damage type from your main weapon, or to have a maneuver trait you want to use often.

From your own description it sounds like the developers maybe see your character as more of a swashbuckler

Perhaps you are correct, but the Swashbuckler wasn't a thing until the Advanced Player's Guide, iirc. Still, perhaps I should look at the Swashbuckler and see if I could add the thieving skills I want to that.

Otherwise, I do have this progressing in mind for a Rogue which gives me Parry at level 4, which isn't horrible.

Level 1: Twin Feint
Level 2: Dual-Weapon Warrior Dedication
Level 4: Twin Parry
and then a bunch of other two-weapon possibilities through level 20 if it seems to be working out for me.

Scarab Sages

Rogues have Twin Feint and Twin Distraction, so it's a style that was at least considered for the class. And Two-Weapon Warrior can fill in a lot more. But there does seem to be a concerted effort to not give Rogues any weapons that are parry, finesse, and agile. The nightstick is an exception, but it's from an AP, so not necessarily balanced.

Main-gauche is one I would like to have seen Rogues have for the Pirate flavor, but I guess they wanted to save that for the Swashbuckler.

I'll also take a moment to point out how disappointed I was after building (and playing) my Dwarf Rogue for a few levels in PFS before realizing that the Clan Dagger isn't a Finesse weapon. Now I'm just using a boring two shortsword combo and not building around all the Dwarf Clan Dagger feats, because I may as well just wear a buckler instead and actually be able to attack with the weapon if I need to.

EDIT: A solution would have been for Two-Weapon Warrior to grant scaling proficiency in some typical off-hand weapons, similar to Mauler for 2H and Archer for Bows. But then, Two-Weapon Warrior gives Double Slice, so it's already a better dedication feat than a lot of archetypes, and I wouldn't want to lose that.


Yeah, I found the following concept on Reddit. I do not yet know how effective this build would be, but with normal thief skills, this is close to what I am imagining. I could do it with a dagger (or even a short sword) as my second weapon. But thematically, I was hoping it could be a main-gauche, which would also grant the parry option at level 1.

Anyway, in case someone is interested in the full path:

Level 1: Twin Feint
Level 2: Dual-Weapon Warrior Dedication
Level 4: Twin Parry
Level 6: Twin Distraction
Level 8: Flensing Slice
Level 10: Dual-Weapon Blitz
Level 12: Twin Riposte
Level 14: Dual Onslaught
Level 16: Two Weapon Flurry
Level 18: Twinned Defence
Level 20: Improved Twin Riposte

(edited for spelling)


jim lafflam wrote:
Unicore wrote:

I think it was probably more of a narrative choice than mechanical game balance. As Greystone points out, you can get parry already. In fact, the PF2 rogue doesn’t have a whole lot of two weapon support, so a lot of the choice here might come down to secondary attacks you occasionally make, often with a different rune or damage type from your main weapon, or to have a maneuver trait you want to use often.

From your own description it sounds like the developers maybe see your character as more of a swashbuckler

Perhaps you are correct, but the Swashbuckler wasn't a thing until the Advanced Player's Guide, iirc. Still, perhaps I should look at the Swashbuckler and see if I could add the thieving skills I want to that.

Otherwise, I do have this progressing in mind for a Rogue which gives me Parry at level 4, which isn't horrible.

Level 1: Twin Feint
Level 2: Dual-Weapon Warrior Dedication
Level 4: Twin Parry
and then a bunch of other two-weapon possibilities through level 20 if it seems to be working out for me.

In Deities and Demigods, he was a thief 15th level, Fighter 11th level and magic-user 3rd level: so he wasn't any level rogue...

As to the feat options, I think Twin Feint is mostly pointless as Double Slice is better as MAPs doesn't advance until Double Slice is over but Twin Feint's second attack uses MAP normally so it'll be -3 [-5 second attack penalty and +2 flatfooted]. Second, unless you're planning to use hide for your sneak attack, things like flanking and making them prone lasts your whole round so the extra flatfooted isn't going to matter. It depends on how much you want Twin Distraction I guess.

Nimble Dodge, IMO, would be better and still have that swashbuckling flair. That and 6th I'd take Gang Up to make sure you're getting your sneak attack from flanking.


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When Investigator was playtested, it only had proficiency in very specific martial weapons. When it launched, it had all martial, and no classes since the CRB have had specific proficiencies. Mark Seifter I believe has commented that it was only there for legacy reasons, and that it's fine to just give them all martial. There are no balance issues with allowing rogues to use all martial weapons, as they already have restrictions in what weapons they can use. Sneak Attack only works up to specific die sizes, etc.

Scarab Sages

Twin Feint will typically only be -2, since you'll likely be using an agile weapon. So -4 plus flat-footed. It has its place, and can even make sense if you've also got Double Slice, in the event that you can't get flat-footed any other way for sneak attack. Remember, too, that Twin Feint doesn't require a roll to make them flat-footed (to the second attack). Where things like tripping require athletics, which also means needing strength, and also would make the attack take MAP. Flanking, and eventually Gang Up, are the much better options, sure, but for a 1st level feat, Twin Feint is fine and can continue to be situationally useful, which isn't always the case with low-level feats.


graystone wrote:
jim lafflam wrote:
Unicore wrote:

I think it was probably more of a narrative choice than mechanical game balance. As Greystone points out, you can get parry already. In fact, the PF2 rogue doesn’t have a whole lot of two weapon support, so a lot of the choice here might come down to secondary attacks you occasionally make, often with a different rune or damage type from your main weapon, or to have a maneuver trait you want to use often.

From your own description it sounds like the developers maybe see your character as more of a swashbuckler

Perhaps you are correct, but the Swashbuckler wasn't a thing until the Advanced Player's Guide, iirc. Still, perhaps I should look at the Swashbuckler and see if I could add the thieving skills I want to that.

Otherwise, I do have this progressing in mind for a Rogue which gives me Parry at level 4, which isn't horrible.

Level 1: Twin Feint
Level 2: Dual-Weapon Warrior Dedication
Level 4: Twin Parry
and then a bunch of other two-weapon possibilities through level 20 if it seems to be working out for me.

In Deities and Demigods, he was a thief 15th level, Fighter 11th level and magic-user 3rd level: so he wasn't any level rogue...

As to the feat options, I think Twin Feint is mostly pointless as Double Slice is better as MAPs doesn't advance until Double Slice is over but Twin Feint's second attack uses MAP normally so it'll be -3 [-5 second attack penalty and +2 flatfooted]. Second, unless you're planning to use hide for your sneak attack, things like flanking and making them prone lasts your whole round so the extra flatfooted isn't going to matter. It depends on how much you want Twin Distraction I guess.

Nimble Dodge, IMO, would be better and still have that swashbuckling flair. That and 6th I'd take Gang Up to make sure you're getting your sneak attack from flanking.

Ah, a fellow AD&D player I presume? I still have my original copy of Deities and Demigods in a box around here somewhere, which predates any concept of "Rogue" at all, iirc. Back then, we were all "thieves" :-) I don't think Rogue was introduced until AD&D 2nd Edition?

Still, I always imagined Cat's Claw as a main-gauche, and not just a simple dagger.


Oh, and I agree Nimble Dodge would be great swashbuckling flair...which is kinda why I was hoping to find a way to ditch Twin Parry by using an Agile Finesse weapon that has Parry baked right in.

Basically, I think I know this so far:

1. I could always house rule this for games I GM.
2. I could possibly convince my GM to house rule this for my character.
3. I could not expect to use this for PFS play unless I convince Paizo to add the main-gauche to the list of Rogue-available weapons (which is unlikely unless they read this and agree--wink wink?).

I also know that I have not overlooked any obvious way to get a Rogue to be able to use a main-gauche as proficiently as a rapier in the current RAW. So, thanks to everyone contributing so far, at least I feel good about not brain-farting something obvious (which is always a good feeling :-)


jim lafflam wrote:
Ah, a fellow AD&D player I presume? I still have my original copy of Deities and Demigods in a box around here somewhere, which predates any concept of "Rogue" at all, iirc. Back then, we were all "thieves" :-) I don't think Rogue was introduced until AD&D 2nd Edition?

Well, I started when d&d was a wargame supplement and played every d&d until 5e. Had to find and blow the dust off that Deities and Demigods [the first edition with the Cthulhu and Melnibonéan sections intact]. And yes, 2E brought us the rogue. ;)

Scarab Sages

Twin Parry is still (more) worth it if the weapon has Parry, because then you're getting a +2 instead of +1. Nimble Dodge does have Swashbuckler flair, but I find it more often than not just wastes your reaction, since you have to declare it before you know whether or not the attack hits. Unlike something like Reactive Shield, which triggers on being hit. In your build, you would eventually want your reaction free for Twin Riposte (which also has Twin Parry as a prerequisite). If you remove Twin Parry from the build entirely, then you could take Opportune Backstab, which is one of the better reactions, and then you would want to save your reaction for that.

Shadow Lodge

Squiggit wrote:
Taja the Barbarian wrote:
Presumably, Paizo wanted to future-proof the class and minimize the chances that weapons added in the future might cause issues (or just give future martial weapon designs a little more 'breathing room' by not having to worry about rogues easily 'abusing' them).
Weird to have that concern only for rogues.

A sneak attacking rouge with a short sword or rapier typically gets better 'weapon damage' than a greatsword for any other martial (2d6 vs. 1d12), so this class is an obvious 'potential problem' if better (and rogue-appropriate) martial weapons are ever introduced.

Please note this also keeps Exotic weapons effectively 'out of reach' even if you spend an ancestry feat to get access and reduce the proficiency to martial, which means they don't have to be quite as nervous about possibly adding an exotic finesse and/or agile large-die weapon in the future.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Worth pointing out that rogues, wizards, and bards got bespoke weapon lists in both editions of Pathfinder, where investigators only had them in first edition. None of the post core classes have had bespoke lists, and I think that's because Paizo decided they weren't worth it, especially with how their proficiency scaling works.


Ferious Thune wrote:
Twin Parry is still (more) worth it if the weapon has Parry, because then you're getting a +2 instead of +1. Nimble Dodge does have Swashbuckler flair, but I find it more often than not just wastes your reaction, since you have to declare it before you know whether or not the attack hits. Unlike something like Reactive Shield, which triggers on being hit. In your build, you would eventually want your reaction free for Twin Riposte (which also has Twin Parry as a prerequisite). If you remove Twin Parry from the build entirely, then you could take Opportunist, which is one of the better reactions, and then you would want to save your reaction for that.

I personally take it because rogue is VERY light on reaction so you aren't losing anything most time for using it. If you do find one later on, you can retrain it into something else then: for instance, the suggested Twin Riposte kicks in at 10th and you could use Nimble Dodge for 9 levels. Opportune Backstab is the same but you're getting it 2 levels earlier. And even if you where to take one of those reactions, it still could be useful for when you aren't in melee: for instance, it'll work vs missiles and ranged spell roll spells while the others don't. Plus the follow-up feat, Nimble Roll, adds the bonus to ref and when it works gives 10' movement.

PS: Yes, I didn't get back to fix he agile MAP as posts started coming in and I forgot to. Sill, -2 vs 0 is a meaningful difference, especially if you can manage a consistent way to get flatfooted anyway [like gang up and another melee party member]. It becomes even less appealing when Flensing Slice, Dual Onslaught and Dual-Weapon Blitz gets added in using them means you aren't using


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Taja the Barbarian wrote:
A sneak attacking rouge with a short sword or rapier typically gets better 'weapon damage' than a greatsword for any other martial (2d6 vs. 1d12)

Why are you comparing a rogue using sneak attack to a martial benefitting from zero class features, though?

2d6 vs 1d12+4 because you're a dragon barbarian is not higher damage for the rogue.

2d6 vs 1d12 and +2 to hit because you're a fighter is not a win for the rogue either.

etc. etc.

Quote:
so this class is an obvious 'potential problem' if better (and rogue-appropriate) martial weapons are ever introduced.

Not when martial weapons are already by design meant to have a degree of parity to them. Like, give me an example. Which martial weapon do you think is overpowered on the rogue? The main-gauche the OP talked about? The Piranha's Kiss from grand bazaar that's just a worse short sword? Which one?

This feels sort of like a kludgy, after the fact attempt to explain away the issue than a conscious and careful consideration on Paizo's part to be very scared about the future proofing of one particular class for no particular reason.

Seems more likely Paizo just made a decision out of hand and there's a reason they've never repeated it since.


One thing I failed to mention in the build above, I think I was going to use the Scoundrel racket. That way I could use Feint (with a high Charisma, of course, since I am sooo dashing) in order to maintain flat-footed foes with or without the help of flanking allies. I realize there is a chance I fail the Feint, so I could follow it up with a Twin Feint to guarantee flat-footed foe for my second agile attack. But when I do succeed my Feint, it is good the the end of my next turn, and if I crit the Feint, the foe is flat-footed to ALL attacks. The Parry is just there to protect me a little between turns.


Taja the Barbarian wrote:
Please note this also keeps Exotic weapons effectively 'out of reach' even if you spend an ancestry feat to get access and reduce the proficiency to martial, which means they don't have to be quite as nervous about possibly adding an exotic finesse and/or agile large-die weapon in the future.

No it doesn't: Human [Versatile Heritage]

1st-Free general feat: Weapon Proficiency
1st-Ancestry feat: Unconventional Weaponry [advanced weapon]
13th-ancestry feat: Unconventional Expertise [advances weapon proficiency equals your normal progression]


jim lafflam wrote:
One thing I failed to mention in the build above, I think I was going to use the Scoundrel racket. That way I could use Feint (with a high Charisma, of course, since I am sooo dashing) in order to maintain flat-footed foes with or without the help of flanking allies. I realize there is a chance I fail the Feint, so I could follow it up with a Twin Feint to guarantee flat-footed foe for my second agile attack. But when I do succeed my Feint, it is good the the end of my next turn, and if I crit the Feint, the foe is flat-footed to ALL attacks. The Parry is just there to protect me a little between turns.

Please remember that feint has the Mental trait: this means it has no affect on mindless creature so you might still want a way to get flank without it.


graystone wrote:
Taja the Barbarian wrote:
Please note this also keeps Exotic weapons effectively 'out of reach' even if you spend an ancestry feat to get access and reduce the proficiency to martial, which means they don't have to be quite as nervous about possibly adding an exotic finesse and/or agile large-die weapon in the future.

No it doesn't: Human [Versatile Heritage]

1st-Free general feat: Weapon Proficiency
1st-Ancestry feat: Unconventional Weaponry [advanced weapon]
13th-ancestry feat: Unconventional Expertise [advances weapon proficiency equals your normal progression]

Good point. The original character concept was an elf (sorry I failed to mention that). But I thought there was a feat path to do what I was thinking for a human, so changing the ancestry could fix it. Just too bad there wasn't a more universal solution at the class level. Again, though, good point.


graystone wrote:
jim lafflam wrote:
One thing I failed to mention in the build above, I think I was going to use the Scoundrel racket. That way I could use Feint (with a high Charisma, of course, since I am sooo dashing) in order to maintain flat-footed foes with or without the help of flanking allies. I realize there is a chance I fail the Feint, so I could follow it up with a Twin Feint to guarantee flat-footed foe for my second agile attack. But when I do succeed my Feint, it is good the the end of my next turn, and if I crit the Feint, the foe is flat-footed to ALL attacks. The Parry is just there to protect me a little between turns.
Please remember that feint has the Mental trait: this means it has no affect on mindless creature so you might still want a way to get flank without it.

I had considered that, and had already accepted that weakness as part of the character design. But again, good point.

Scarab Sages

graystone wrote:
Ferious Thune wrote:
Twin Parry is still (more) worth it if the weapon has Parry, because then you're getting a +2 instead of +1. Nimble Dodge does have Swashbuckler flair, but I find it more often than not just wastes your reaction, since you have to declare it before you know whether or not the attack hits. Unlike something like Reactive Shield, which triggers on being hit. In your build, you would eventually want your reaction free for Twin Riposte (which also has Twin Parry as a prerequisite). If you remove Twin Parry from the build entirely, then you could take Opportunist, which is one of the better reactions, and then you would want to save your reaction for that.
I personally take it because rogue is VERY light on reaction so you aren't losing anything most time for using it. If you do find one later on, you can retrain it into something else then: for instance, the suggested Twin Riposte kicks in at 10th and you could use Nimble Dodge for 9 levels. Opportune Backstab is the same but you're getting it 2 levels earlier. And even if you where to take one of those reactions, it still could be useful for when you aren't in melee: for instance, it'll work vs missiles and ranged spell roll spells while the others don't. Plus the follow-up feat, Nimble Roll, adds the bonus to ref and when it works gives 10' movement.

All of that is true, but it’s still not a great feat. it isn’t useless. Just not great. It only applies to one attack. You have to decide which attack to use it on before the attack is rolled. Far more often than not, the +2 AC won’t matter for the attack it’s used on. Occasionally it will. When I had it, I just mostly found it disappointing, because I’d never guess the right attack to use it on. So I retrained it.

Twin Feint at worst is a similar situation. If you don’t need it, you just don’t use it. If you don’t have another way to get flat footed, you use it. I find that situation comes up much more often, but that may be partly because my rogue is fairly tanky compared to most builds (due to dwarf, high con, toughness, and now mountain stoutness), so I don’t really mind being 1-on-1 with an enemy.

Both are 1st level feats, so they don’t need to be the best. Both can be retrained away once you get a better option. Both have a higher level feat that might incentivize keeping them.

I tend to point out the flaws in Nimble Dodge, because a lot of people read the feat as being much better than it actually is (by assuming you can use it after you know the result of the attack).

Tumble Behind is probably more reliably useful than either of the other two, and it also has a lot of swashbuckler style to it. It’s more useful on an actual Swashbuckler, though, who wants to tumble frequently anyway.

For the double slice vs twin feint comparison… you just use them in different situations. Twin feint if they aren’t flat footed is better (at least at low levels). Double slice if they are flat-footed is better. In general, Double Slice is a much better feat for sure. As a Rouge, you aren’t taking it at 1st level, so it’s not really competing. Once Flensing Slice comes online, sure, retrain twin feint.

Anyway, I would advise the OP to take whatever feels like it’s going to be the most fun.


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jim lafflam wrote:

Yeah, I found the following concept on Reddit. I do not yet know how effective this build would be, but with normal thief skills, this is close to what I am imagining. I could do it with a dagger (or even a short sword) as my second weapon. But thematically, I was hoping it could be a main-gauche, which would also grant the parry option at level 1.

Anyway, in case someone is interested in the full path:

Level 1: Twin Feint
Level 2: Dual-Weapon Warrior Dedication
Level 4: Twin Parry
Level 6: Twin Distraction
Level 8: Flensing Slice
Level 10: Dual-Weapon Blitz
Level 12: Twin Riposte
Level 14: Dual Onslaught
Level 16: Two Weapon Flurry
Level 18: Twinned Defence
Level 20: Improved Twin Riposte

(edited for spelling)

One correction: switch the levels you take twin distraction and twin parry, since dww doesn't gain access to twin parry until 6

Personally though, I wouldn't build a rogue like this. I feel like it doesn't take into account the action costs and combat flow. What would a few sample turns look like?


Ferious Thune wrote:
Twin Feint at worst is a similar situation. If you don’t need it, you just don’t use it. If you don’t have another way to get flat footed, you use it. I find that situation comes up much more often, but that may be partly because my rogue is fairly tanky compared to most builds (due to dwarf, high con, toughness, and now mountain stoutness), so I don’t really mind being 1-on-1 with an enemy.

The difference is that you get a reaction at 1st level and it goes to waste without something to spend it on: so even if you 'waste' it on a roll you'd have already made it's not like you lost anything. Twin Feint is actively worse than another option the build is taking most time and only gets worse as the build goes on as it builds on the other action.

Tumble behind is useful but again, doesn't give you something to spend your reaction on. IMO, it's important to get something to spend that reaction on if you can: once you have multiple choices, THEN you can debate over which is better but when you only have one, it's your best option by default. Worst case with Nimble Dodge is that you retrain it when you get a better reaction.


graystone wrote:
You could get trained in it so you can use the parry but it wouldn't advance past that.

Do you now? Would you mind citing the rule requiring proficiency to profit from a weapon‘s trait?


Grimmerling wrote:
graystone wrote:
You could get trained in it so you can use the parry but it wouldn't advance past that.
Do you now? Would you mind citing the rule requiring proficiency to profit from a weapon‘s trait?

Yeah. Proficiency just determines what your attack modifier is. Everything else is just fine. It's why you might see rogues using whips to trip without having proficiency in the whip itself.


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Look at the trait:
Parry, Core Rulebook pg. 283
"This weapon can be used defensively to block attacks. While wielding this weapon, if your proficiency with it is trained or better, you can spend a single action to position your weapon defensively, gaining a +1 circumstance bonus to AC until the start of your next turn."


Baarogue wrote:


One correction: switch the levels you take twin distraction and twin parry, since dww doesn't gain access to twin parry until 6

Yup, those would have to be switched. I think I accidentally focused on the Level 4 mentioned in the actual feat description for that one instead of the Level 6 requirement of Dual-Weapon Warrior. Good catch.

Liberty's Edge

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"This is where I'd put my Rogue Class Archetype... IF I HAD ONE!!"

Seriously, this is the biggest open mechanical gap in the system thus far, and one intentionally created pretty early on too. They just haven't really focused the books thus far on creating them yet, presumably, because the developers think most of the stuff they want to create right now can be done with generic Archetypes that ANY Class can use.

I tend to disagree with that decision and feel that including 2-5 Class Archetypes per hardcover would have been the measured and balanced approach but... maybe we will get a book in 2024 that has a bunch of them for all Classes once they're done releasing new whole-cloth Classes.

Scarab Sages

graystone wrote:

The difference is that you get a reaction at 1st level and it goes to waste without something to spend it on: so even if you 'waste' it on a roll you'd have already made it's not like you lost anything. Twin Feint is actively worse than another option the build is taking most time and only gets worse as the build goes on as it builds on the other action.

Tumble behind is useful but again, doesn't give you something to spend your reaction on. IMO, it's important to get something to spend that reaction on if you can: once you have multiple choices, THEN you can debate over which is better but when you only have one, it's your best option by default. Worst case with Nimble Dodge is that you retrain it when you get a better reaction.

There is a cost involved. The first level feat. If you consider Twin Feint redundant in the build, and I consider Nimble Dodge mostly disappointing, they could just take Trapfinder. The build is missing any utility from its class feats, so that may not be a bad idea. Or even You’re Next, if they’re going the charisma route anyway, would give them a useful reaction (though one that also is admittedly situational).

Rogue first level feats aren’t great, so again, it doesn’t really matter. They should take whatever sounds fun.

(If the math has been done somewhere on Twin Feint vs Double Slice for a Rogue when the enemy is not flat-footed, I’m happy to take a look. I expect that at least before Striking Runes come in, Twin Feint will be better, and depending on build specifics, possibly longer. So I don’t consider it redundant until later in the build. But I think we’ve made our points as far as this thread is concerned.)


Squiggit wrote:
Taja the Barbarian wrote:
Presumably, Paizo wanted to future-proof the class and minimize the chances that weapons added in the future might cause issues (or just give future martial weapon designs a little more 'breathing room' by not having to worry about rogues easily 'abusing' them).
Weird to have that concern only for rogues.

IMO they just missed. They based the rogue concept from 1e but added the weapons list after and forget that there's others rogue like weapons like main-gauche.

Scarab Sages

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Back on the OP’s question… Yeah, I think the Rogue proficiencies and Wizards not getting all simple weapons was a miss. If they did it for legacy reasons, why choose to do that for this, when so much else in the edition has purposely deviated from the legacy? If they did it for balance reasons, it was unnecessary and an example of where the system is over correcting. It’s already a balanced system. There isn’t a need for this kind of granular rule. That’s part of the benefit of having a balanced system in the first place.

To put it another way, it’s not future proofing. It’s complicating future releases, because if anything is meant to be released for the rogue to use, it needs an additional note granting them proficiency. The balance of the system itself has already future proofed this. If a weapon is released that breaks that balance, it’s going to be an issue for more than just Rogues so would need to be addressed anyway.


graystone wrote:

Look at the trait:

Parry, Core Rulebook pg. 283
"This weapon can be used defensively to block attacks. While wielding this weapon, if your proficiency with it is trained or better, you can spend a single action to position your weapon defensively, gaining a +1 circumstance bonus to AC until the start of your next turn."

Thanks, I bow to your superior knowledge.


Now, that I see myself embarrassingly corrected, may I humbly suggest the dueling cape:

You do not need to be proficient in anything,
you will get a little extra perk not totally useless to a rogue,
and it does offer at least a modicum of style.

Take the Cloak, if you cannot have the Dagger.


>if anything is meant to be released for the rogue to use, it needs an additional note granting them proficiency

No, they just need to make it a simple weapon. Simple. And if any player wants more weapon choices, there are routes to gain proficiency. Or... just play the class they clearly really want to play

This swashbuckling "rogue" the OP wants to create would function so much better and I posit FEEL more satisfying to play if it was actually BUILT as a swashbuckler, or if they're focused on CR choices, a fighter or ranger. They would have more weapon options, better proficiency IN those weapons, and more swashbucklery feats native to their class and thus available sooner in addition to other combat feats and reaction options NOT available to a rogue like AoO

And if they're hung up on the actually rogue elements of the class like stealth, pickpocket, trap finding, and lockpicking, well one or two of those can be taken and raised just fine by any other class too since they're not class restricted

But I think that's the rub. Nobody complaining the rogue doesn't have enough weapons seems to acknowledge the wealth of skills and skill feats rogues get, and I think they'd like us to leave those out of the conversation because what they REALLY want is a skill master who ALSO is a murderer, and giving up the skills to gain the combat cred is too painful to contemplate because then they wouldn't have max everything!!1

Seriously, look at swashbuckler's mechanics and compare it to how Gray Mouser performs in combat and I think you'll be pleasantly surprised. The clown costume on the class cover page isn't mandatory. Dress as dark as you like


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I also had this issue when wanting to use a sword cane for a rogue I wanted to make. Since it was a home game, I was able to talk my GM into letting me use it by transferring proficiency in rapiers to sword canes.

Scarab Sages

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Just making something simple doesn't quite solve the issue, as simple weapons presumably have different design constraints, and they are also available to the casting classes (excepting Wizards). There's clearly a design space somewhere of weapons that should be martial that thematically fit Rogues. Main Gauche is a pretty good example that people are finding as an oversight.


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Taja the Barbarian wrote:
Presumably, Paizo wanted to future-proof the class and minimize the chances that weapons added in the future might cause issues (or just give future martial weapon designs a little more 'breathing room' by not having to worry about rogues easily 'abusing' them).

Well it is not just Rogues.

It is Wizards, Bards, Rogues, Monks (Monastic Weaponry), Clerics (Favoured Weapon), Fighters (one weapon group). It really seems like a design choice to me, not an oversight.

With the newer classes Gunslinger they still have some clear restrictions. I mean, I get it, it is the point of the class. Perhaps the problem is how easy it is for Fighters to get around their restrictions. Rogues can't.

My solution would be to create a Rogue weapon trait, like Monks have, so it is easy to expand in a controlled way.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Probably not for PF2, but for a future game revision, having class traits for weapons would make the process of figuring out what weapons are supposed to work with a class and which are not would make the process cleaner for new players. I have fun pouring over new material and seeing what can be combined and what can’t, but I don’t think it is really good for the game for players to feel like there has to be a way for their dwarven STR Rogue to use a hand axe, but have to narratively bend the game over itself to figure out how.

Adopted ancestry as one of the “most straightforward” ways to gain proficiency in one handed weapons is a pretty weird state of things, best fixed with a class archetype. I would have been fine with that being fighter MC archetype, but archer and mauler breaking that so quickly and efficiently really calls for errata on the fighter MC weapon proficiency feats. “Here is a worse way to do the same thing as many more powerful options, but the only way to do some worse ones” is pretty awkward.


Simple weapons clearly have weaker stats than martial weapons. Martial weapons clearly have weaker stats but greater accuracy than advanced weapons. Rare/Unique weapons clearly are stronger than Uncommon/Common weapons.

The issue with the limited weapon option is that PF2 is specifically designed to stop what made that okay. In 3.5/PF a rogue could take 1 feat or 1 level in fighter to gain proficiency with all martial weapons and use sneak attack. But in PF2 you have to find very specific feats and outright avoid taking the fighter proficiency feats. Not to mention that they added the restrictions of needing to use an agile/finesse weapon that didn't exist previously.

This part of the proficiency system is something I always had trouble with because it straight up just kills abilites. Do we seriously need to gate keep advanced weapons so hard that even if you manage to somehow get proficiency by spending who knows how many feats, they still have an accuracy penalty? All while somehow it is easier to learn actual reality bending magic than it is to learn how to use a differently shaped polearm.


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Yeah, advanced weapons are pretty much exclusively gated behind specific ancestries and the odd fighter or gunslinger taking advanced weapon training. There's a bunch of advanced weapons now that aren't even tied to ancestries that are in accessability limbo with how many hoops you need to go through to get proficiency with them. Especially the advanced monk weapons. Those confuse me.

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