Remastered Fighter & Bastard Sword


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion

1 to 50 of 112 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>

3 people marked this as a favorite.

I have just bought the Remastered Core Rules & GM's guide and am severely disappointed!

I was hoping for a couple of changes but of course was disappointed!

Why is Shield Block still a starting Feat for a Fighter, when it is only useful if you are not using two handed weapons, two weapons or single handed weapon and free hand?

Likewise Bastard Sword is still the only straight bladed sword or knife that doesn't have Versatile. Also the cost makes no sense either, four times the cost of a long sword or twice the cost of a Great Sword!


11 people marked this as a favorite.

There was a similar thread to this awhile back, and I may be echoing the sentiments from there, but I believe it boiled down to this: "You can't expect PF2 to play like PF1."

What I mean is, PF2 looks to reward "wide" play - giving players a plethora of options that can be very situationally useful. This means that you won't always get the "most efficent" use out of your choices. You may have feats that don't get used as often as others or have class features that you never touch.

In PF1, it was common to trade away everything that didn't contribute to the one thing you did to the best of your ability. We had alternate racial traits to winnow away the "useless" skill feats, favored classes, and fairly set feat progression. That's not to say that these were bad, but just that you shouldn't expect that same mentality in PF2.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Ruzza wrote:

There was a similar thread to this awhile back, and I may be echoing the sentiments from there, but I believe it boiled down to this: "You can't expect PF2 to play like PF1."

What I mean is, PF2 looks to reward "wide" play - giving players a plethora of options that can be very situationally useful. This means that you won't always get the "most efficent" use out of your choices. You may have feats that don't get used as often as others or have class features that you never touch.

In PF1, it was common to trade away everything that didn't contribute to the one thing you did to the best of your ability. We had alternate racial traits to winnow away the "useless" skill feats, favored classes, and fairly set feat progression. That's not to say that these were bad, but just that you shouldn't expect that same mentality in PF2.

I am not asking PF2 to play like PF1, because it doesn't at all. However I DO ASK IT TO MAKE SOME SENSE! Shield Block will probably NEVER be used by 80% of Fighter Builds, not rarely like other choices of other classes.


17 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

You also have proficiency with longspears that you'll probably never use, so what? If you don't want to use shields that's fine, just don't.


I am not following what you are looking for with Shield Block. Sure it in a free feature because shields were a standard thing in all TTRPGS, Shield Block allows you to simply play a defensive fighter that doesn't have the stomping power of a d12 weapon but does have +2 AC that a shield brings with it. Unironically Barbarian and Champion get the most use out of shield block.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

They learnt to use a shield in basic fighter training. Others must pay a feat for that.

The Bastard sword is a nice weapon, if it would have the same features than longsword and greatsword, costing the same, who then would use any other?
Is a weapon that let's you have a free hand when required (like grabbing), and change to greater damage die with a single action. There must be some tradeoff.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Dark_Schneider wrote:

They learnt to use a shield in basic fighter training. Others must pay a feat for that.

The Bastard sword is a nice weapon, if it would have the same features than longsword and greatsword, costing the same, who then would use any other?
Is a weapon that let's you have a free hand when required (like grabbing), and change to greater damage die with a single action. There must be some tradeoff.

I am not talking about the mechanics of Shield Block, which are fine IF you want to use a Shield. I am talking about the fact that the Feat is USELESS fOR some 80% of Fighters, yes, USELESS!


11 people marked this as a favorite.

The reason is game design. Ruzza explained it, but let me go into more detail.

The combat abilities that a fighter automatically gains at 1st level are expert proficiency in simple and martial weapons and unarmed strikes, trained proficiency in advanced weapons, trained proficiency in all armor and unarmored defense, Reactive Strike, and Shield Block. The fighter can also chose a 1st-level fighter feat that opens up a new combat style or favors an existing one. This lets the fighter specialize.

Combat Assessment makes the fighter more tactical with knowledge about the opponent.
Double Slice opens up dual-weapon fighting.
Exacting Strike favors making multiple Strikes during a turn.
Point Blank Stance favors ranged attacks from nearby.
Reactive Shield saves the fighter from Raising a Shield as an action.
Snagging Strike can make an opponent off-guard to a freehand fighter's second Strike.
Sudden Charge gives more mobility on the battlefield.
Vicious Swing favors high-damage-dice weapons, such as two-handed weapons.

But the advantage to specialization is capped by so-called tight math. In order to keep the effectiveness of each class inside the bounds predetermined for the character's level, specialization gives only a small reward. The PF2 design does not let any 1st-level fighter fight as well as a 2nd-level fighter, regardless of the tradeoffs they are willing to make.

Sometimes the fighter might even abandon their specialty because circumstances favor another style, such as a Sudden Charge fighter standing still and sheathing their sword in order to pull out a bow against a flying opponent. The tight math has no objection to using many different combat styles, because the 1st-level fighter fights at 1st-level strength in most combat styles. With the specialization, the fighter is at the top strength for their level, and without the specialization the fighter is at the average strength for their level, but they fit within the bounds of the tight math.

And don't scream "Useless!" because Shield Block is not useless to a two-handed-weapon fighter. Imagine that the fighter is facing a creature that deals massive damage. It is a level-appropriate encounter, so that massive damage is balanced by an awful AC and low hit points. And the fighter's job in the party is to prevent that creature from hitting their teammates, who have fewer hit points than the fighter. So what does the fighter do if they have a round to prepare? They sheath their greatsword and pull out their backup shield, which is stored next to their backup shortbow. Shield Blocking is the best tactic, regardless of what the 1st-level fighter chose as their specialty.

PF2 strategy requires switching tactics based on the opponent's strengths and weaknesses.

Most edged, straight swords are slashing weapons with Versatile P or piercing weapons with Versatile S, because in real life a straight sword with an edge can be used for slashing or for thrusting. I think Versatile was left off the bastard sword because its Two-hand d12 ability makes it so powerful that any additional weapon traits would be overkill. Remember that two-handed-weapon fighter who had to pull out their backup shield? If that fighter had wielded a bastard sword rather than a greatsword, then they would not have had to spend a action drawing a one-handed weapon to go their shield.

Prices in PF2 typically are based on the level of the item, and the level of the item is based on the level at which a character is expected to start using it. The two-handed d12 trait on the bastard sword feels like an advanced technique, so the designers priced it halfway between a 1st-level permanent item such as Consumed Aeon Stone, 9 gp, and a 0th-level mundane item such as a longsword, The bastard sword's price is in the same range as the advanced melee weapons, such as dwarven waraxe 3gp and sawtooth saber 5 gp. If a character wants an advanced technique, then the game makes the character pay for it in feats, action taxes, or gold.


11 people marked this as a favorite.

Being mad that you get shield block for free is weird. It's free, and the alternative is that you get literally nothing so you're not losing anything by having it even if you choose not to use it.

On the topic of the bastard sword, though... game options exist to be game options. That's why we can't have a weapon have every possible trait that makes real-world sense for it; we'd end up with some weapons being hands down better than the rest. That makes for bad game-play even though it is mirroring the real world.

So we have to have the bastard sword have some disadvantages relative to both the longsword and greatsword to balance its advantage of being able to perform in a similar role to both while being just the one weapon. So it's more expensive but lacks the versatile trait and is only a single bulk where carrying a longsword and a greatsword would be 3.

Which, incidentally, is the smallest possible downside to give it since most of the time that slashing damage is undesirable so is piercing and slashing is more frequently able to trigger weaknesses so it's the better damage type of the two for the weapon to keep.

Thus it seems that both complaints are without actual point behind them and are just some kind of misguided "I should actually have even more cool stuff than I already do... but because realism, not because I'm asking for unfair amounts of cool stuff."


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Shield focused fighters need shield block, and there are enough first level feats a sword and board fighter might pick that you can't just make it an extra part of a particular level 1 feat. Most classes that get shield block at level 1 can support alternate weapon styles.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Yeah, if you're going to complain you should really complain about the pre-remaster druid and their nearly totally useless shield block (once you get a couple of levels or so)


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Honestly this complain about Shield Block is senseless.

About Bastard Sword the design was made to trade of versatile for Two-Hand 1d12. Other wise it will work like Katana and becoming a 1d6 weapon due balance reasons.

Honestly in a universe where we are complaining that Monks need to waste a feat as feat tax to get access to monk weapons someone is complaining that fighters are not needing to have an action tax to use Shield Block in a class focused in be versatile with weapons (and shields).

I honestly don't understand.

Dark Archive

3 people marked this as a favorite.

Supposing your assumptions are correct, the 20% of fighter player who DO want to use a shield would probably be pretty annoyed having to spend a general feat for it.

You aren't LOSING anything for having gained Shield Block as a starting feat.

Is an extra 3gp really breaking the bank? It might make a tiny difference at character creation, but this feels like such a small complaint.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

I think people here are interpreting this the wrong way.

A Reaction is a must for every character as it is a massive boost in action economy.

The fact that you get an unusable one as a Fighter is a "feels-bad moment" that should be avoided.

Fighters should have been allowed to pick up a thematic reaction, whether it is a Dueling Parry, a 2H Block, or a Shield Block.

Same goes for Paladins, and hell, why not Monks, Rogues and Rangers?


6 people marked this as a favorite.

But the fighter get both AoO and shield block! How can a fighter complain about its use of reaction! The ones to complain could be spell casters.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
aiglos wrote:
USELESS!

This game is not PF1 where you can trade everything away for something else. Sometimes you are stuck with some class defaults. This is a different game. You don't need to waste time with that sort of deep optimisation.

If you don't want a shield yes it is useless to you.

Dark Archive

Secret Wizard wrote:

I think people here are interpreting this the wrong way.

A Reaction is a must for every character as it is a massive boost in action economy.

The fact that you get an unusable one as a Fighter is a "feels-bad moment" that should be avoided.

Fighters should have been allowed to pick up a thematic reaction, whether it is a Dueling Parry, a 2H Block, or a Shield Block.

Same goes for Paladins, and hell, why not Monks, Rogues and Rangers?

Fighters already get Reactive Strike. Having a second, less generically useful reaction doesn't take anything away from that.


Fighter chassis designed that way.

Bastard sword design is based on balance so other weapons are equally attractive. Too many traits on one weapon lead to overuse.


Yeah, every class has a chassis that is front-loaded so every reasonable interpretation of that class will work at low levels. That means "give shield block" to any class that you assume might want to use a shield.

If you're not going to use it, then you can just forget about it, but you're not going to get something back for not using something built into your chassis. That thing might not be for your character, but it will be for someone elses.

Like my Champion of Shelyn who used a glaive didn't have any use for Shield Block, but so what?


aiglos wrote:

I have just bought the Remastered Core Rules & GM's guide and am severely disappointed!

I was hoping for a couple of changes but of course was disappointed!

Why is Shield Block still a starting Feat for a Fighter, when it is only useful if you are not using two handed weapons, two weapons or single handed weapon and free hand?

Likewise Bastard Sword is still the only straight bladed sword or knife that doesn't have Versatile. Also the cost makes no sense either, four times the cost of a long sword or twice the cost of a Great Sword!

Fighters were already in a very strong spot, so they don't need much more in terms of changes. +2 over everyone at all times is a huge boost, and a lot of their feats are crazy good (even if a bit plentiful). Just because you have features you don't always use doesn't make them bad; Shield Block is a primo feat, and is actually a general feat. Getting a general feat that other people would otherwise need to invest into is a huge boon in and of itself, even if you won't (always) use it.

As for Bastard Sword not having versatile, it already poaches the best of both the Longsword and the Greatsword by nature of it already being a D8 1h with the flexibility of becoming a D12 2h with a single action, so asking it to be even more powerful when it's already probably the most powerful sword type in the game is beyond me. Very few weapons even come close to how potent the Bastard Sword is in this edition.

You could even nerf the Bastard Sword to be Two-Hand D10 and it would still be a pretty potent weapon to choose while not invalidating Greatswords.


It seems like "give yourself the ability to stab people with a bastard sword" is something that could be done with a stance. Since the actual reason it doesn't have versatile is "balance vs. other weapons", but you could say that "with a long grip so you can switch between one and two hands, it's difficult to stab with one hand, and with a hold it to be able to drop a hand while still control the blade makes it more difficult to stab" but you overcome that with special training i.e. a stance.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Also there is the fighter's concept, they are great at a lot of fighting styles even ones you put no feats into.
They can easily pick up any weapon and use it just fine. That is what the class does. They have innate options and shields are one of them.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Ectar wrote:
Is an extra 3gp really breaking the bank?

It's not an extra 3 gp even. The point of buying a bastard sword is so you don't have to have both a longsword and a greatsword because it can cover for both, so it's only an extra 1 gp.

Secret Wizard wrote:
a "feels-bad moment" that should be avoided.

"Feels bad" is a hollow argument.

Firstly because even if someone genuinely feels bad about something, someone else can just not. In this case, me; I do not feel bad at all that if I don't choose to use a shield I can't make use of Shield Block. And I also don't feel bat at all when I make the choice to Shield Block and as a result don't get to Reactive Strike.

And secondly because there is such a thing as unwarranted feelings which we shouldn't do anything as a result of other than work on not continuing to have them. Which things like "I feel bad because I got free stuff with absolutely no downside" unquestionably fall into.


I feel bad. I feel like I’m missing out on something for free I won’t use, but I don’t know what it is.


4 people marked this as a favorite.

Shield block isn't even the biggest offender on the "class features some fighters can't use", that's reactive strike on archers. Shield block is a general feat, it is not a huge increase in power, takes up basically none of the class budget, and makes life much easier for any shield users. While reactive strike is 6th level feat given at lvl 1, and is the fighters only real class feature at level 1 other than \expert attacks. It definitely takes a large amount of the class budget, but archers can't use it until level 8 with mobile shot stance (other than unarmed attacks which unless you spend a bunch of gold to upgrade them, will deal almost no damage). I'm not sure anything should actually change, it is still relatively minor, but I feel like a lower level feat to let them use reactive strike would be nice.


I play a fighter and started using a shield, then put it down in mid levels and picked it back up on high levels. I am thankful that fighter starts with shield block. This gives the fighter an option to use it if they wish.

In the mid levels where I didn't use a shield, I became a damage sponge that required in combat healing to survive. When I picked the shield back up, I could last many combats without being healed. Having the option to try different styles is a good thing.

Also, the game rewards blunt weapons much more than slashing/piercing weapons so bastard sword is a substandard weapon in my opinion.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

To put things in 3.PF terms, Shield Block is considered equivalent to shield proficiency. So fighters (and druids and champions and...) get shield proficiency, even though they may not use shields, for the same reason they have proficiency in all martial weapons and heavy armour.

For the bastard sword, it got moved from advanced to martial, so it had to trade off something relative to the greatsword. They decided increased cost and losing the ability to pierce made sense for a weapon that had to be rebalanced to be usable one or two handed.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
LandSwordBear wrote:
I feel bad. I feel like I’m missing out on something for free I won’t use, but I don’t know what it is.

So you are felling bad because the class (along almost all martials) have proficiency in all martial weapons but you are only able to use one at time? Or to have many different actions but it's unable to use all them at time?

I understand this point when we are talking about dead slots, when you have a slot of anything but it's unable to use it and doesn't get anything good to compensate it due some bad design or bad choice. But its not the case when we are talking about a trade-off like a weapon/shield option.

  • A fighter with a one-handed melee weapon and a shield is able to use its 3rd action and its reaction to Shield Block or Reactive Strike but as trade-off its weapons is limited to melee/throwable up to one-handed d8 weapon with short range and don't have a free-hand to do many maneuvers and need to Swap to use most consumable and backup items requiring an extra action to Draw the weapon again.
  • A fighter with a two-handed melee weapon does up to d12 damage but its unable to use its 3rd-action to Rise a Shield and reaction to Shield Block but its Reactive Strike damage is stronger yet still don't have a free-hand requiring some extra action to regrip when you need to use any extra item and also still limited to short ranged Strikes.
  • A fighter with a one-handed weapon and a free hand does up to d8 damage but its able to use its free-hand to do many maneuvers like Trip/Grab/Disarm/Shove/Reposition without need to use extra actions to Draw/Put Away (sheathe) your weapon or shield (shields requires an extra action to detach) or to have trip/grab/disarm in your weapon to use them, same for use other items like consumables without requiring some extra action to regrip your weapon if it's two-handed or Swap if you are using a 2 weapons in each hand or shield and a weapon.
  • A fighter with 2 one-handed weapons is able use choose to use between them without require extra weapons like do a first action Strike if a d8 weapon and a second Strike with your second hand d6 agile weapon or use your 3rd action to parry with a secondary parry weapon or take advantage to use any trait from both weapons like trip with a weapon or grab with the other weapon but even with more traits to use more maneuvers and actions without need extra actions still need to Swap to use another item like a consumable and have less options than a free-hand and Parry usually gives less AC and no Shield Block when compared to a Shield.
  • A fighter with a crossbow/firearm is able to do very long ranged Strikes with up to a d12 weapon but like two-handed melee weapon requires extra actions to use your hands to do anything that's unrelated to your weapon traits and also requires to use an action to reload every time that fires and its unable to use both reactions to Shield Block or to Reactive Strike.
  • A fighter with a bow is also able to do very long ranged Strikes and have a free-hand to make maneuvers or use items but its limited to d6 weapons or d8 longbows (with a minimum range or get a penalty) but also does not requires to use an action to reload yet doesn't have reactions to use.

    So notice that all this is a matter of choice, you are making a real-time trade-off when you choose a weapon selection and not a "I'm simply loosing my free Shield Block reaction". Including this is a choice that many other classes cannot do so freely requiring some extra resource like a feat or magic in order to get same or similar options being way more clunky.
    So this is pretty different from for example to get the Shield Block feat with a Barbarian but for some reason now you are using a two-handed weapon. This may make you "fell bad" because you "wasted" you General Feat slot to get a thing that you are now unable to use. Yet many people will do this and doesn't fells bad because they still consider this a tactical choice that they can made like "these enemies doesn't proves to have a great hit/critical rate to me so its better now to drop my shield and use my bastard sword with my both hands to kill them faster than try to fight more defensively with a shield risen".


  • @YuriP - now I feel terrible. I was being utterly sarcastic.

    Still, you make extremely good points, and having just seen the help you gave about using Foundry in that other thread, you should be commended for being such an attentive and dedicated community member. We are lucky to have you share your thoughts and knowledge. Again, apologies, and thanks!

    I am actually playing a 2nd Level Fighter with Power Attack/Vicious Swing at the moment - primarily uses longsword and shield. I think, after reading this thread, I might switch to one-handing a bastard sword. I can always drop the shield and use an action to adjust grip if I want to really go to town on something...


    OP's complaint is pretty easily addressed with some very minor negotiation with your GM. The rules allow you to retrain your character using a week of downtime. This lets you exchange one feat for a different of the same or lower level. Just ask your GM to give you a week of downtime ahead of the game and swap out your "useless" shield block for a different level 1 general feat. You might even be able to persuade them that you should be able to retrain into a level 1 class feat instead. IMO, exchanging the "useless" feat is already covered by the retraining rules. So, Bob's really your uncle.

    From a game design perspective, this is where actual build paths might have been useful.

    For my own games, this is a non-issue. We don't have fighters.


    Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

    That would only be if your GM has somehow decided fighters need a houserule buff, since under normal rules you can never retrain into something that wasn't a choice without retraining (so the idea that exchanging the Shield Block bonus feat for something else is already covered under Retraining rules is simply wrong). I don't think you'll find widespread agreement that fighters need to be buffed, even with something small.


    2 people marked this as a favorite.
    Jacob Jett wrote:
    IMO, exchanging the "useless" feat is already covered by the retraining rules. So, Bob's really your uncle.

    No. You can't retrain non-selectable features by default. And this is non-selectable feature.

    And this policy opens Pandora's box: now all players would want to exchange something for their characters.
    HammerJack wrote:
    I don't think you'll find widespread agreement that fighters need to be buffed, even with something small.

    And free 1st level General feat is actually huge.

    Silver Crusade

    1 person marked this as a favorite.
    Errenor wrote:
    Jacob Jett wrote:
    IMO, exchanging the "useless" feat is already covered by the retraining rules. So, Bob's really your uncle.

    No. You can't retrain non-selectable features by default. And this is non-selectable feature.

    And this policy opens Pandora's box: now all players would want to exchange something for their characters.
    HammerJack wrote:
    I don't think you'll find widespread agreement that fighters need to be buffed, even with something small.
    And free 1st level General feat is actually huge.

    I would most certainly NOT allow this. As stated, its NOT following the rules and is a significant power up for those (probably a majority) fighters who never (or very rarely) shield block.

    While I'm sometimes willing to create house rules to power up a weak class there is no way I'd do so to power up what is generally viewed as one of the most powerful (if not most powerful) martial class in the game.


    Errenor wrote:
    Jacob Jett wrote:
    IMO, exchanging the "useless" feat is already covered by the retraining rules. So, Bob's really your uncle.

    No. You can't retrain non-selectable features by default. And this is non-selectable feature.

    And this policy opens Pandora's box: now all players would want to exchange something for their characters.
    HammerJack wrote:
    I don't think you'll find widespread agreement that fighters need to be buffed, even with something small.
    And free 1st level General feat is actually huge.

    Rolling my eyes here. Minor thing remains minor. Honestly, there's no "math" here to back up balance arguments. Ironically, I had initially written "adding a minor houserule." Honestly substituting a level 1 athletics skill feat for shield block is totally neutral (good luck mathing up how it's not). A general feat is a general feat is a general feat. Substitutions are fine.

    Now subbing something like Vicious Swing for Shield Block on the surface looks more major but, IM(E)O, it amounts to the same.

    Let's not forget rule #1. IMO, OP should have a heart-to-heart with their GM. The houserules both write themselves and are unspeakably minor (compared to the rewrites I've done...but I've also whole-cloth written RPGs before so...make of that what you will...this is all a hobby after all and different people will find different aspects more interesting and fun than others).

    What you should consider is why Shield Block is a "general feat." It's not because it's not a useful class feat for a fighter. (It is a useful class feat for a fighter.) Its not a class feat for fighters because it would look weird to be a class feat for a wizard. The developers obviously thought all classes should be able to do this, which IMO argues better that it should just be a basic action that anyone can do.

    Based on utility for a fighter generally, as a feat, Shield Block is on par with Vicious Swing. As such, I don't see a mechanical issue making a substitution. YMMV.

    I get OP's frustration. Fighter is a poorly designed class that poorly interfaces with the games combat rules and selection efficiencies. The advantages it has are at the expense of other classes (and thereby other players). The entire set of character creation rules are full of these odd compounding, "we made choice X here so we have to support it with choice Y there" type of engineering. In my experience, this is the same kind of sloppy design that most software development cycles experience. Too little forethought and too many, "we can't undecide something."

    In summary, the good parts of the game are its bones--encounter maths, creature designs, 3-action system, stealth/concealment, and similar exploration and gameplay sub-systems. The bad aspects of the game all have to do with character building. Let's exclude Ancestries and Backgrounds generally as they're adequate for purpose.

    This leaves me with a list of specific complaints:
    - general & skill feats are unnecessarily organized according to levels (with only 5 exceptions, you already have other pre-requisites, so level restrictions are mostly redundant)
    - class designs are inconsistent and overly privilege martial classes (fighter especially) at the expense of other classes
    - elimination of other utility-tier classes (non-spellcaster/non-martial) leaves the Rogue and Investigator looking over-specified and under-engineered and the Alchemist in an awkward space all by its lonesome (And honestly, there's really good reasons why most D&D games have a triumvirate of class groupings with respect to weapon proficiency.)
    - archetypes are overloaded as a sub-system and at once present players with too many disparate choices
    -- should I specialize (e.g., Archer, Dandy, etc.)
    -- should I join a group (e.g., Hellknight Armiger, [Pathfinder] Swordmaster, etc.)
    -- should I become something unnatural (e.g., Ghoul, Vampire, etc.)
    -- should I multiclass (e.g., Fighter + Sorcerer; Champion + Druid, etc.)

    Most of this directly contributes to the endemic feel-bads arguments here and elsewhere.

    And again, rule #1 both exists and is rule #1, so rather than dogpile on OP for holding an opinion you don't agree with, perhaps make constructive suggestions within the full purview of the rules (remember #1?) that OP may, possibly, find helpful.

    Silver Crusade

    2 people marked this as a favorite.
    Jacob Jett wrote:


    Rolling my eyes here. Minor thing remains minor.

    I think you're pretty much missing the point.

    IF the character actually uses their shield, then shield block is pretty much worth a general feat (I say pretty much to try and avoid arguments on where it is on the general feat power spectrum).

    But if you're playing a two handed weapon fighter, or an archer, or a two weapon fighter, or a free hand fighter then shield block becomes much less valuable. Still has SOME value since even somebody specializing in another fighting style will still sometimes want to use shield block. But much, much less (especially since the monetary cost to keep a useful shield for blocking is non trivial).

    For THOSE characters swapping Shield Block with an arbitrary general feat is very clearly a power up. It is slightly less powerful than just giving those fighters an extra general feat but only slightly. And there are quite a few useful general feats.

    And, of course, if Player A sees Player B getting a "free" feat from whining then they're going to want a free feat too. Why can't my druid (especially Pre remaster) ALSO swap out their shield block for a general feat? Why can't my cloistered cleric swap out Proficiency with their dieties weapon for something? Why can't my lizardfolk swap out his claws attack for something?

    etc. etc. etc

    It is
    1) Broken in this specific instance
    2) Leads to a massive issue of what can be swapped out for what.

    You say you like to make massive sets of house rules. Fine. Do what you want. Most of us, however, don't.

    Edit to add: From a purely mechanical point of view, the 2 huge advantages that Humans get that are almost universally considered to make them one of the best ancestries mechanically are
    1) Extra General Feat
    2) Yet another general feat OR a 1st level class feat.

    Especially at low levels general feats can be HUGELY powerful. As in almost character defining or almost meaning the difference between life and death. Eg, grabbing a longbow on a caster, or grabbing armor or better armor for many characters.


    Yeah, I would prefer to just give everybody a free first level general feat than to allow classes who get shield block to represent "proficiency with shields" to trade that away for something

    PF2 is decidedly not like PF1- you shouldn't want to make your character have fewer options in order to focus on the best ones.


    pauljathome wrote:
    But if you're playing a two handed weapon fighter, or an archer, or a two weapon fighter, or a free hand fighter then shield block becomes much less valuable.

    The fighter is the 'good at a flexible variety of combat styles' class. If the player is looking for a 'specialist at hitting things with a big honking weapon' class, I'd suggest Giant Barbarian or maybe Inexorable Iron Magus.

    I don't think the OP meant it this way, but the ask is sort of an unintentional, well-meant, non-powergame version of "ooh. I really want that +2 to hit and AoO reaction. Now how can I convince my GM to let me combine these 'best of' fighter features with the 'best of' features from another class..."


    1 person marked this as a favorite.
    PossibleCabbage wrote:

    Yeah, I would prefer to just give everybody a free first level general feat than to allow classes who get shield block to represent "proficiency with shields" to trade that away for something

    PF2 is decidedly not like PF1- you shouldn't want to make your character have fewer options in order to focus on the best ones.

    Yup.

    We don't want to make it look like "I gave up the ability to read for a +1 to hit" is a real thing people are supposed to be trying to find a way to make happen for their character.

    Silver Crusade

    Easl wrote:
    pauljathome wrote:
    But if you're playing a two handed weapon fighter, or an archer, or a two weapon fighter, or a free hand fighter then shield block becomes much less valuable.

    The fighter is the 'good at a flexible variety of combat styles' class. If the player is looking for a 'specialist at hitting things with a big honking weapon' class, I'd suggest Giant Barbarian or maybe Inexorable Iron Magus.

    I don't think the OP meant it this way, but the ask is sort of an unintentional, well-meant, non-powergame version of "ooh. I really want that +2 to hit and AoO reaction. Now how can I convince my GM to let me combine these 'best of' fighter features with the 'best of' features from another class..."

    It may be well meant but that is CERTAINLY a powergame request.

    The fighter IS pretty much the best (or, at least, tied for the best) 2 handed weapon class out there. That +2 to hit and reactive strike are pretty darn massive.


    2 people marked this as a favorite.
    Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

    Very similar arguments have been made for the wizard in the past.
    The answer is simple, the class is a package and it includes things you may or may not use.
    All the features went into balancing the class with others and other classes also are packages that offer things you might never use too.


    1 person marked this as a favorite.
    pauljathome wrote:
    Jacob Jett wrote:


    Rolling my eyes here. Minor thing remains minor.
    I think you're pretty much missing the point.

    Well, we agree that one of us is anyway.

    pauljathome wrote:

    IF the character actually uses their shield, then shield block is pretty much worth a general feat (I say pretty much to try and avoid arguments on where it is on the general feat power spectrum).

    But if you're playing a two handed weapon fighter, or an archer, or a two weapon fighter, or a free hand fighter then shield block becomes much less valuable. Still has SOME value since even somebody specializing in another fighting style will still sometimes want to use shield block. But much, much less (especially since the monetary cost to keep a useful shield for blocking is non trivial).

    For THOSE characters swapping Shield Block with an arbitrary general feat is very clearly a power up. It is slightly less powerful than just giving those fighters an extra general feat but only slightly. And there are quite a few useful general feats.

    And, of course, if Player A sees Player B getting a "free" feat from whining then they're going to want a free feat too. Why can't my druid (especially Pre remaster) ALSO swap out their shield block for a general feat? Why can't my cloistered cleric swap out Proficiency with their dieties weapon for something? Why can't my lizardfolk swap out his claws attack for something?

    etc. etc. etc

    It is
    1) Broken in this specific instance
    2) Leads to a massive issue of what can be swapped out for what.

    You say you like to make massive sets of house rules. Fine. Do what you want. Most of us, however, don't.

    Edit to add: From a purely mechanical point of view, the 2 huge advantages that Humans get that are almost universally considered to make them one of the best ancestries mechanically are
    1) Extra General Feat
    2) Yet another general feat OR a 1st level class feat.

    Especially at low levels general feats can be HUGELY powerful. As in almost character defining or almost meaning the difference between life and death. Eg, grabbing a...

    Unfortunately, my interpretation of your diatribe is that the "correct" fighter build is "sword and board," to which I say, piffle. The hallmark of bad design are universal features that are only used by a minority of the population. When this pattern emerges, it's a clear indication that the universal feature should have been an optional one.

    To ignore rule #1 is to both over-value and under-value what the GM's role is. Fundamentally, the GM has to have the goal of the players having a good time. The value of rule #1 is that it gives GM's carte blanche to do whatever is necessary to ensure player satisfaction. And I'll be blunt here, player satisfaction = customer satisfaction. And so far from being broken, a house rule here makes the situation salvageable. Frankly this is a clear example of where Fighter, as a class, would have greatly benefited from the kinds of efficiencies afforded to other classes by having clear-cut, rules-forward build paths.

    However, it occurs to me that part of the problem here are shields themselves. The rules surrounding them are a kind of simulationist approach to showcasing something that shields in real life are good at--blocking damage from attacks. The problem is that, with the sole exception of blocking ranged attacks, everything you can do with a shield, you can also do with any weapon (even a tiny knife). In point of fact, as anyone trained with martial arts is going to know, blocking with whatever you have at hand, be it your arm, a sword, a glaive, a dagger, etc. is the very first thing all martial arts teach.

    And so, it is arguably better to fully merge shields (and their feats) with weapons. We simply combine the parry action with the raise a shield action and get rid of the Parry trait. We rewrite shield as a simple bludgeoning weapon with the a new trait granting it an additional AC bonus against ranged attacks. Now whether you wield a sword (or other weapon) or a shield, you gain a benefit to AC. Rename Shield Block to Block and alter its scope from a shield to a weapon in hand (inclusive of a shield) and mission (mostly) accomplished.

    IMO, this is an elegant solution because it's just as simulationist as all the somersaults that have been made for shields previously and doesn't make a class feature useless in (arguably) many situations. This will also promote both a more cinematic approach to combat (now parrying is normalized) and an overall enrichment in fighter choices during combat (now I have some serious risk/reward stakes because blocking too many hits with my weapon is clearly going to break it...kind of like in real life...).

    If folks are concerned about the optics of blocking an armed attack while unarmed there are additional permutations of rules that present themselves, not the least of which is roshanbo~ing weapons blocking weapons a la counterspelling (e.g., one needs a sword to block a sword, or a mace to block a mace, etc.). IMO, this isn't really necessary, as there are many ways for the unarmed to block the attack of someone who is armed, many of them having to do with being aggressive and/or employing one's clothing in ways other than what it was intended for.

    As usual YMMV and we agree to disagree about the stakes, the role of the rules vs the role of the GM, and what makes for "balanced" vs. "broken."


    8 people marked this as a favorite.

    The only person who said sword and board is the "correct" build is you. No one else has. It's there for those who want to use it. Almost every class has something like this (druid, wizard, Magus....). Now I could sort of see this being an issue if you cost you something, but it doesn't. And for a fighter it absolutely makes sense that they would learn to use a shield as a part of their basic training.


    6 people marked this as a favorite.
    Jacob Jett wrote:
    Unfortunately, my interpretation of your diatribe is that the "correct" fighter build is "sword and board," to which I say, piffle.

    That's not at all what they're saying - and why is this even an argument? It's a free thing built into the chassis, it takes nothing away because there was nothing else to be had, and it's the same thing as not using any of the myriad of proficiencies a class chassis gives you in favor of another.

    There's no need for a house rule, imo, because there's nothing to 'fix'. I've never ever seen someone argue something that you get for free should not be there - I just don't get it.


    Riddlyn wrote:
    The only person who said sword and board is the "correct" build is you. No one else has. It's there for those who want to use it. Almost every class has something like this (druid, wizard, Magus....). Now I could sort of see this being an issue if you cost you something, but it doesn't. And for a fighter it absolutely makes sense that they would learn to use a shield as a part of their basic training.

    Ah, but it did cost the player something. It cost them a choice (of which they have been deprived).


    3 people marked this as a favorite.
    Jacob Jett wrote:
    Riddlyn wrote:
    The only person who said sword and board is the "correct" build is you. No one else has. It's there for those who want to use it. Almost every class has something like this (druid, wizard, Magus....). Now I could sort of see this being an issue if you cost you something, but it doesn't. And for a fighter it absolutely makes sense that they would learn to use a shield as a part of their basic training.
    Ah, but it did cost the player something. It cost them a choice.

    No, it doesn't. It's not taking away from a Fighter feat or anything else. It's just a free thing built into the chassis.


    4 people marked this as a favorite.

    I can't believe the wizard was deprived of a choice of ??? because they got Drain Bonded Item.

    You're aware that taking away Shield Block from the fighter doesn't mean they gain anything as a result, right?

    1 to 50 of 112 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>
    Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder Second Edition / General Discussion / Remastered Fighter & Bastard Sword All Messageboards

    Want to post a reply? Sign in.