Shields in the Remaster


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion


Do we know if there's an intermediate material between steel and adamantine in the Remaster? Or if adamantine got some sort of change? Or are lesser, greater, and major shields just getting a small nerf?

Right now I'm looking at the old sturdy shields and comparing to reinforcing runes, and I am vaguely concerned (reinforcing rune data sourced from Rules Lawyer here )

Minor sturdy shield had hardness 8 and 64 hp for a cost of 80 gp. A minor reinforcing rune + steel shield has hardness 8 and 64 hp for 77 gp

Lesser sturdy shield had hardness 10 and 80 hp for 360 gp. Lesser reinforcing rune + steel shield has hardness 8 and 62 hp for 302 gp. Hardness and hp are both lower.

Moderate sturdy shield was hardness 13 and 104 hp for 1,000 gp. Moderate reinforcing rune + standard grade adamantine shield is hardness 13 and 104 hp for 1,340 gp.

Greater sturdy shield was hardness 15 and 120 hp for 3,000 gp. Greater reinforcing rune + standard grade adamantine is hardness 13 and 120 hp for 2,940 gp. Given that greater reinforcing rune maxes out at hardness 15 there has to be some sort of weird intermediate I'm not thinking of.

Major sturdy shield was hardness 17 and hp 136 for 10,000 gp. Standard grade adamantine major reinforcing shield gets hardness 15 and 124 hp for 8,440 gp.

High grade adamantine supreme reinforcing rune shield gets up to hardness 20 and 160 hp, exactly the same as supreme sturdy shield used to, both cost 40,000 gp.


Sounds like in some parts, the scale is out of whack, because it makes no sense for something to be higher level and cost more, but have an identical or even reduced benefit (i.e. lower HP) compared to one of a previous level. I'm going to call typo on those; otherwise, if something at the same level at Premaster is of a different scale of what is given to us from the Remaster, then I'll chalk that up to an intentionally different scaling, which isn't necessarily bad, since it could be a fine-tuning sort of thing.

Otherwise, tying the Sturdy Shield mechanics to runes is a complete downgrade by comparison, because 1. You are competing with other potential runes that might be potent enough to warrant purchasing/acquiring, and since there is no Potency runes for Shields, you're restricted to one rune type, period, and 2. You aren't able to apply these runes to Specific Shields, meaning unless a lot of the new Specific Shields come equipped with (a) Reinforcing Rune(s), this means you can't take Specific Shields and turn them into something that you can reliably block with; granted, this isn't anything new on that front, but the factor that it's being strictly tied to a rune (even if we don't consider the scale is reduced at all) makes it all the worse for shield users everywhere.

I also don't like how they're basically forcing players who want to utilize shields to block attacks to do some mumbo-jumbo combination effort to reach previously-acquired levels of defense; now, I have to look at special materials and correspond that with the rune type I want, and determine its base hardness from a table.

Paizo Employee Design Manager

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Reinforcing runes don't replace sturdy shields. Sturdy shields are still included if you just want a simple blocking option.


Michael Sayre wrote:
Reinforcing runes don't replace sturdy shields. Sturdy shields are still included if you just want a simple blocking option.

But can you put Reinforcing Runes on Sturdy Shields, or do they just not stack?


Michael Sayre wrote:
Reinforcing runes don't replace sturdy shields. Sturdy shields are still included if you just want a simple blocking option.

Oh, nice! Thanks for the clarification!


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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Michael Sayre wrote:
Reinforcing runes don't replace sturdy shields. Sturdy shields are still included if you just want a simple blocking option.
But can you put Reinforcing Runes on Sturdy Shields, or do they just not stack?

reinforcing runes have a maximum of hardness and hitpoints they grant which is lower then sturdy value

Paizo Employee Design Manager

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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Michael Sayre wrote:
Reinforcing runes don't replace sturdy shields. Sturdy shields are still included if you just want a simple blocking option.
But can you put Reinforcing Runes on Sturdy Shields, or do they just not stack?

Reinforcing runes have a maximum Hardness and Hit Point value that is equivalent to a sturdy shield of the same level. So you can put a reinforcing rune on a lower level sturdy shield if you want to scale it up using loot or the like, but if you just want a simple blocking option with the best Hardness and HP profile for the level, you can just get the most recent sturdy shield.

This essentially means that the ceiling for shield blocking stays in the exact same place, but you have more options to upgrade other types of shields for different functionality by applying a reinforcing rune. Reinforcing runes can also explicitly be applied to specific shields. Depending on the shield you're applying the rune to, it may or may not hit the maximum cap for the rune, but it will never go over that value.


First I'm hearing of shield runes. Awesome.


Michael Sayre wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Michael Sayre wrote:
Reinforcing runes don't replace sturdy shields. Sturdy shields are still included if you just want a simple blocking option.
But can you put Reinforcing Runes on Sturdy Shields, or do they just not stack?

Reinforcing runes have a maximum Hardness and Hit Point value that is equivalent to a sturdy shield of the same level. So you can put a reinforcing rune on a lower level sturdy shield if you want to scale it up using loot or the like, but if you just want a simple blocking option with the best Hardness and HP profile for the level, you can just get the most recent sturdy shield.

This essentially means that the ceiling for shield blocking stays in the exact same place, but you have more options to upgrade other types of shields for different functionality by applying a reinforcing rune. Reinforcing runes can also explicitly be applied to specific shields. Depending on the shield you're applying the rune to, it may or may not hit the maximum cap for the rune, but it will never go over that value.

So you could turn a Buckler or Tower Shield into an effective shield with it, for example.

Are specific shields restricted from these runes or no?


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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:

So you could turn a Buckler or Tower Shield into an effective shield with it, for example.

Are specific shields restricted from these runes or no?

From what I heard from The Rules Lawyer, that was the intended interaction. You could put runes on the special magical shields so that you could actually shield block with them too.


Sturdy fortress shield meta incoming. (Probably just for monks who can eat the speed penalty)

Paizo Employee Design Manager

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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Michael Sayre wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Michael Sayre wrote:
Reinforcing runes don't replace sturdy shields. Sturdy shields are still included if you just want a simple blocking option.
But can you put Reinforcing Runes on Sturdy Shields, or do they just not stack?

Reinforcing runes have a maximum Hardness and Hit Point value that is equivalent to a sturdy shield of the same level. So you can put a reinforcing rune on a lower level sturdy shield if you want to scale it up using loot or the like, but if you just want a simple blocking option with the best Hardness and HP profile for the level, you can just get the most recent sturdy shield.

This essentially means that the ceiling for shield blocking stays in the exact same place, but you have more options to upgrade other types of shields for different functionality by applying a reinforcing rune. Reinforcing runes can also explicitly be applied to specific shields. Depending on the shield you're applying the rune to, it may or may not hit the maximum cap for the rune, but it will never go over that value.

So you could turn a Buckler or Tower Shield into an effective shield with it, for example.

Are specific shields restricted from these runes or no?

(Not to be snarky, but answer bolded in the section you were quoting!)


Okies, I'm glad specific shields don't follow all the same rules as other specific items. I'm doing a complete 180 on this, then.


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Aren't they following the same rules though? It's a fundamental rune, and specific magic items have always been able to upgrade and add those.

You just can't add property runes.


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Holy moly, fortress shield with an up to date rune is some stout turtling! Make it a dwarf champion and that'll be one heck of a tough nut to crack

Paizo Employee Design Manager

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Guntermench wrote:

Aren't they following the same rules though? It's a fundamental rune, and specific magic items have always been able to upgrade and add those.

You just can't add property runes.

Correct.


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Michael Sayre wrote:
Guntermench wrote:

Aren't they following the same rules though? It's a fundamental rune, and specific magic items have always been able to upgrade and add those.

You just can't add property runes.

Correct.

Adjacent question - It feels like you all always wanted to keep a pretty defined line between "shields with magic effects" and "shields to block with" with both getting the benefits of raising a shield. I was surprised to see that the rune offers the same tier of benefit as the Sturdy Shield given this, and had been assuming it would be a version or two behind Sturdy for any given level.

Can you share a little about how thinking changed within the design team around the above? Was there concern about power budgets early on that were deemed unfounded with time, or the cost differential was a sufficient tradeoff, etc?


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WWHsmackdown wrote:
Holy moly, fortress shield with an up to date rune is some stout turtling! Make it a dwarf champion and that'll be one heck of a tough nut to crack

Makes me want to slap the heaviest armor, shield, and weapon on a character as I possibly can just for the funsies and defense. Heck maybe go without a weapon and bonk people with your big ol' shield.


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I'm happy because it allows for silver shields that don't implode when monsters look at them funny.

Liberty's Edge

Perpdepog wrote:
WWHsmackdown wrote:
Holy moly, fortress shield with an up to date rune is some stout turtling! Make it a dwarf champion and that'll be one heck of a tough nut to crack
Makes me want to slap the heaviest armor, shield, and weapon on a character as I possibly can just for the funsies and defense. Heck maybe go without a weapon and bonk people with your big ol' shield.

My dwarven Animal (Deer) Barbarian in Full Plate fits the last description. Going Living Monolith for even more defense.

My elven (adopted by Dwarves) Champion MC Giant Barbarian fits the first. He is tremendously fast too.


Just curious, is it intended that strap is no action, while unstrap is, and to use Lighting Swap one has to spend an action to unstrap first?


As this seems like the most pertinent thread (and it's still less than a month old), I'll just necro it a tad instead of starting a new one.

1) My general understanding of pre-remaster shields was that Sturdy Shields are good for blocking and basically every other kind of shield should just never be used to block, or at best, they have a finite window of levels where they can effectively block before the number treadmill leaves them behind. If I'm understanding correctly, these new reinforcing runes can take any shield whatsoever and bolster its blocking stats to a max of what an equivalent level Sturdy Shield could provide. Some (probably most?) shields won't reach that cap, but they do stay some modicum of level-appropriate throughout the character's entire 1-20 career.

Is that about right?

2) Armor and weapon fundamental runes are made an automatic part of the character's stats under the Automatic Bonus Progression rules. Are these reinforcing runes meant to now be a part of that as well? Are they already (and I missed where it was added)?


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sad spellguard shield still have such terrible scaling with the new shield rune

but a lot of other shield are becoming useful for blocking and no longer get left behind as player level

Dark Archive

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Tectorman wrote:

As this seems like the most pertinent thread (and it's still less than a month old), I'll just necro it a tad instead of starting a new one.

1) My general understanding of pre-remaster shields was that Sturdy Shields are good for blocking and basically every other kind of shield should just never be used to block, or at best, they have a finite window of levels where they can effectively block before the number treadmill leaves them behind. If I'm understanding correctly, these new reinforcing runes can take any shield whatsoever and bolster its blocking stats to a max of what an equivalent level Sturdy Shield could provide. Some (probably most?) shields won't reach that cap, but they do stay some modicum of level-appropriate throughout the character's entire 1-20 career.

Is that about right?

2) Armor and weapon fundamental runes are made an automatic part of the character's stats under the Automatic Bonus Progression rules. Are these reinforcing runes meant to now be a part of that as well? Are they already (and I missed where it was added)?

1.) Pretty much

2.) ABP removes "all potency runes, striking runes, and resilient runes." It does not remove the reinforcing runes used by shields, nor does it provide an automatic shield scaling factor.


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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Corvo Spiritwind wrote:
Just curious, is it intended that strap is no action, while unstrap is, and to use Lighting Swap one has to spend an action to unstrap first?

Did you find something actually supporting the statement that strapping is no action, or are you assuming from lightning swap? I ask because when I looked for anything stated about actions to strap a shield on, I wasn't seeing anything.


Ectar wrote:
Tectorman wrote:

As this seems like the most pertinent thread (and it's still less than a month old), I'll just necro it a tad instead of starting a new one.

1) My general understanding of pre-remaster shields was that Sturdy Shields are good for blocking and basically every other kind of shield should just never be used to block, or at best, they have a finite window of levels where they can effectively block before the number treadmill leaves them behind. If I'm understanding correctly, these new reinforcing runes can take any shield whatsoever and bolster its blocking stats to a max of what an equivalent level Sturdy Shield could provide. Some (probably most?) shields won't reach that cap, but they do stay some modicum of level-appropriate throughout the character's entire 1-20 career.

Is that about right?

2) Armor and weapon fundamental runes are made an automatic part of the character's stats under the Automatic Bonus Progression rules. Are these reinforcing runes meant to now be a part of that as well? Are they already (and I missed where it was added)?

1.) Pretty much

2.) ABP removes "all potency runes, striking runes, and resilient runes." It does not remove the reinforcing runes used by shields, nor does it provide an automatic shield scaling factor.

1) Ok, thanks!

2) So it didn't get added in some errata somewhere. Ok.

So (not just directed at Ectar here), what's the consensus on whether they should have been? I mean, ABP just lets your pertinent stats keep up with the game math without the legwork of you finding the relevant Magic Items of Game Math Correcting. Wouldn't the reinforcing runes fit the bill, too?


Tectorman wrote:

As this seems like the most pertinent thread (and it's still less than a month old), I'll just necro it a tad instead of starting a new one.

1) My general understanding of pre-remaster shields was that Sturdy Shields are good for blocking and basically every other kind of shield should just never be used to block, or at best, they have a finite window of levels where they can effectively block before the number treadmill leaves them behind.

That seems to have been the original idea, but it proved to be rather unpopular. I believe there was an errata pass where at least some non-sturdy shields got upgrades to be somewhat reasonable blockers – the Forge Warden, for example got upgraded from Hardness 6 and 24 HP to Hardness 10 and 40 HP. That's significantly less than the 13/104 of a same-level Moderate Sturdy Shield, but at least it won't break if you look at it funny.

As I don't have the Remaster yet, I do wonder if these shields kept their upgrade or reverted to their original stats, with the expectation that you could slap a Reinforcing rune on it if you wanted to use it for blocking.


How does the Reinforcement Rune hardness cap interact with bonuses from champion shield ally, Dwarven Reinforcement, Everstand Stance, and Emblazon Armament? I seems like, in the early to mid game, you could have a higher hardness without using magic. A 7th level Dwarven Champion multi-Cleric master Crafter could make a fortress shield with a hardness 12. This is all with standard materials and no magic. Am I missing something?


Interact as normal. The feats hardness/hp improvements stacks normally with the shield. The rune cap its only valid to base shield hardness + rune bonus. All other extra untyped/circunstance/status bonuses stacks (untyped stacks freely but circunstance and status bonus will be only you greater bonus).

So a Fortress Shield with a Reinforcing Rune (Lesser) will have 6+3=9 hardness, Dwarven Reinforcement will improve the Hardness in +2 if you are Master in Crafting becoming 11 hardness, if your champion choose Shield Ally as your Divine Ally you will sum +2 to it becoming 13 hardness, if you get Everstand Stance and enter in this stance you will add +2 to it becoming 15 hardness (notice the Everstand Stance has access entry restricting it to members of the Knights of Lastwall) and Emblazon Armament will increase it +1 becoming 16 hardness.

Notice that Fortress Shield hardness scales worse than sturdy shields so this hardness is already 1 point less than a sturdy shield version starting from level 7 and its becomes worse over time:

  • Lesser Reinforcing Fortress Shield hardness = 9 | Lesser Sturdy Shield Hardness = 10
  • Moderate Reinforcing Fortress Shield hardness = 9 | Moderate Sturdy Shield Hardness = 13
  • Greater Reinforcing Fortress Shield hardness = 11 | Greater Sturdy Shield Hardness = 15
  • Major Reinforcing Fortress Shield hardness = 11 | Major Sturdy Shield Hardness = 17
  • Supreme Reinforcing Fortress Shield hardness = 13 | Supreme Sturdy Shield Hardness = 20

    Obs.: Adamantine Shield can workaround this diference for many base shield options but there's no adamantine option for Fortress Shields.


  • Urogkt wrote:
    How does the Reinforcement Rune hardness cap interact with bonuses from champion shield ally, Dwarven Reinforcement, Everstand Stance, and Emblazon Armament? I seems like, in the early to mid game, you could have a higher hardness without using magic. A 7th level Dwarven Champion multi-Cleric master Crafter could make a fortress shield with a hardness 12. This is all with standard materials and no magic. Am I missing something?

    Dwarven Reinforcement does not work on shields, so you might as well axe that out.

    Dwarven Reinforcement wrote:
    You can use your knowledge of engineering and metalwork to temporarily strengthen thick objects and structures. By spending 1 hour working on an item, you can give it a +1 circumstance bonus to its Hardness for 24 hours. If you're a master in Crafting, the bonus is +2, and if you're legendary, the bonus is +3. You can reinforce a portion of a structure, though 1 hour usually reinforces only a door, a few windows, or another section that fits within a 10-foot cube.

    The first part references thick objects and structures (of which a shield is neither), and the second part gives examples of what you can reasonably accomplish within an hour, none of the examples of which referencing shields.

    This feels more like an RP option than an actual player option IMO.


    I didn't noticed this before that Dwarven Reinforcement is only valid to thick objects and Darksol is right and in fact wood and stell shields are classified as thin in materials table.

    But Tower and Fortress Shield are almost a door in term of size and stats (Tower Shields in fact have the same stats of a door and Fortress Shields are refered as "thick" in their description). This doesn't make them valid targets for Dwarven Reinforcement?

    About last sentence that Darksol bolded it's refer to limits when the Dwarven Reinforcement is focused in structure aspect only as a size limit that you can do in 1 hour of work that this feat applies.

    I also don't believe that this is just a RP option because the time limit (1 hour) and the duration of reinforcement (24 hours). IMO this was clearly made to be used in daily preparations.

    It's hard because the designers never made this clear but it's common that the first sentence of many description could be considered as a lore info for most players.

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