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PF2 Lets Read and Review Pathfinder 2E

Zardnaar

Adventurer
No need to get so bent out of shape about it. There is a reason why 5e also provides with the option for average HP per level. There is a reason why average damage exists as an option for monsters. There is a reason why proficiency bonus exists as a steady bonus for assumed proficiency in your main attack method. Regardless of the encounter subjectivity or randomness, designers still need known assumptions when designing adventures, encounters, monsters, etc.
And yet they don't follow their own rules and the classic adventures made no such assumptions.

I had an inexperienced DM who was struggling with the encounter rules. He don't really know they were on the easy side.
 

Zardnaar

Adventurer
As it turns out, game design philosophies in our hobby have changed over time.
They have but 5E really only has one great adventure, and a lot of average to good adventures.

It's not hitting the highs of even 3.5. It's not hitting the lies either but a lot of that is because of the design decisions they made. It was glossed over early in 5E but it's getting noticed by a lot more people now. I noticed a lot of the problems in 2014/early 2015.

The casuals are also starting to notice, most campaigns locally seem to finish up around level 8 or lower.

5E starts to get stressed at level 5, level 8 is where combos come online.
 

Aldarc

Adventurer
They have but 5E really only has one great adventure, and a lot of average to good adventures.
Which one is that?

I suspect that Lost Mines of Phandelver will be the one most fondly remembered into any given next edition.

It's not hitting the highs of even 3.5. It's not hitting the lies either but a lot of that is because of the design decisions they made. It was glossed over early in 5E but it's getting noticed by a lot more people now. I noticed a lot of the problems in 2014/early 2015.

The casuals are also starting to notice, most campaigns locally seem to finish up around level 8 or lower.

5E starts to get stressed at level 5, level 8 is where combos come online.
We likely agree on these points, as my group and I found this phenomenon to be a glaring weak point of 5e as well. It also doesn't help that the game, or at least many adventures, is designed to speed level characters, which means that they reach this rough patch even sooner.

I also don't think that it's exactly a coincidence that a lot of d20 fantasy heartbreakers (e.g., 13th Age, Black Hack, Shadow of the Demon Lord) stop at level 10.
 

Mycroft

Explorer
They have but 5E really only has one great adventure, and a lot of average to good adventures.

It's not hitting the highs of even 3.5. It's not hitting the lies either but a lot of that is because of the design decisions they made. It was glossed over early in 5E but it's getting noticed by a lot more people now. I noticed a lot of the problems in 2014/early 2015.

The casuals are also starting to notice, most campaigns locally seem to finish up around level 8 or lower.

5E starts to get stressed at level 5, level 8 is where combos come online.
While I dig the proficiency bonus of 5th Ed, it harkens back to the homogeneous +1/2 level to all, that 4th Ed has; I would prefer a bit more gradation (but not as much as 3rd Ed).
 

Zardnaar

Adventurer
Which one is that?

I suspect that Lost Mines of Phandelver will be the one most fondly remembered into any given next edition.

We likely agree on these points, as my group and I found this phenomenon to be a glaring weak point of 5e as well. It also doesn't help that the game, or at least many adventures, is designed to speed level characters, which means that they reach this rough patch even sooner.

I also don't think that it's exactly a coincidence that a lot of d20 fantasy heartbreakers (e.g., 13th Age, Black Hack, Shadow of the Demon Lord) stop at level 10.
It's Lost Mines.

I own most of the adventures they have put out missing 4. Most of then are good but they lack great ones.
 

Zardnaar

Adventurer
That's subjective. They have several great adventures. Tomb of Annihilation, Curse of Strahd, and Out of the Abyss are a few pegs above "good".
Yeah they are some if the best, but they're derivative as well. In the future I think the opinion will be good adventures based on/tribute to better Adventures.

LMoP us a modern classic IMHO and will be this generations Keep on the Borderlands.

5E adventures tend to be consistently good with only one bad one but they're really only great compared to the 4E ones, they're not hitting the peaks of 3.5/Paizo or even 2E.

Some are outright reprint complilations as well. There's no Savage Tide, Lich Queens Beloved, Mere of Dead Men, Age of Worms, Night Below classic and now 5E has been going for as long as 3.5.

There's a lot to be said for consistency though the "meh" 5E adventures if they were movies would be a 7.5/10. With a couple of exception s.
 
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MockingBird

Explorer
Yeah they are some if the best, but they're derivative as well. In the future I think the opinion will be good adventures based on/tribute to better Adventures.

LMoP us a modern classic IMHO and will be this generations Keep on the Borderlands.

5E adventures tend to be consistently good with only one bad one but they're really only great compared to the 4E ones, they're not hitting the peaks of 3.5/Paizo or even 2E.

Some are outright reprint complilations as well. There's no Savage Tide, Lich Queens Beloved, Mere of Dead Men, Age of Worms, Night Below classic and now 5E has been going for as long as 3.5.

There's a lot to be said for consistency though the "meh" 5E adventures if they were movies would be a 7.5/10. With a couple of exception s.
I can't disagree with you. Everything you said is fairly spot on. I missed the 3.0/3.5 era so I cant really cant say anything about those adventures. I agree, 4e adventures (or the ones I had experience with) seemed very encounter focused, like too much. 1e/2e had a lot of great ones and I'm happy WotC is rereleasing them. I do wish WotC would put out a few more shorter adventures, I'd even be happy with the format they used for the "remasters".
 

Nebulous

Explorer
Which one is that?

I suspect that Lost Mines of Phandelver will be the one most fondly remembered into any given next edition.

We likely agree on these points, as my group and I found this phenomenon to be a glaring weak point of 5e as well. It also doesn't help that the game, or at least many adventures, is designed to speed level characters, which means that they reach this rough patch even sooner.

I also don't think that it's exactly a coincidence that a lot of d20 fantasy heartbreakers (e.g., 13th Age, Black Hack, Shadow of the Demon Lord) stop at level 10.
Lost Mine of Phandelver is excellent, I'm running it a second time right now for a newbie group and liking it even more the second go around. But I also liked Princes of the Apocalypse very much, and I'm 2/3 through Tomb and think that's even better than Princes.

BUT...I can't stand running D&D past 10th level. I can recall saying to myself multiple times toward the end of Princes, PCs were 11th or 12 - God, I hate this game. 8th or 9th is typically where I like to end it. I don't use XP either, thank goodness, so I deliberately slow the roll with PC progression. I will keep them at 1st to 8th for a long ass time and enjoy the game, because if it goes on far past that then I quit having fun. PCs are nearly impossible to threaten, they can escape from any situation, and combat encounters take too much work to create a consistent challenge. At low level it is easy to throw an encounter together and it works correctly.
 

Nebulous

Explorer
That's subjective. They have several great adventures. Tomb of Annihilation, Curse of Strahd, and Out of the Abyss are a few pegs above "good".
Yes, I would say it is quite subjective. I would also say that I ran 3 official 4e adventures, and compared to the 5e ones, they were very unremarkable. Lost Mine of Phandelver IMHO delivers one of the best in D&D history, and should rank in the Top 10 of any edition list.
 

Nebulous

Explorer
I can't disagree with you. Everything you said is fairly spot on. I missed the 3.0/3.5 era so I cant really cant say anything about those adventures. I agree, 4e adventures (or the ones I had experience with) seemed very encounter focused, like too much. 1e/2e had a lot of great ones and I'm happy WotC is rereleasing them. I do wish WotC would put out a few more shorter adventures, I'd even be happy with the format they used for the "remasters".
Well, I have found it super easy to retool any older D&D adventure to 5e, it's really just changing the stat blocks and DCs, and using common sense if the PCs can handle 100 giants ants at 1st level or just 10.

Oh, and I want to add 3.0 Red Hand of Doom was another awesome adventure but I never got the chance to run it. But it would make a superb 5e adaptation.
 

Parmandur

Adventurer
Yeah they are some if the best, but they're derivative as well. In the future I think the opinion will be good adventures based on/tribute to better Adventures.

LMoP us a modern classic IMHO and will be this generations Keep on the Borderlands.

5E adventures tend to be consistently good with only one bad one but they're really only great compared to the 4E ones, they're not hitting the peaks of 3.5/Paizo or even 2E.

Some are outright reprint complilations as well. There's no Savage Tide, Lich Queens Beloved, Mere of Dead Men, Age of Worms, Night Below classic and now 5E has been going for as long as 3.5.

There's a lot to be said for consistency though the "meh" 5E adventures if they were movies would be a 7.5/10. With a couple of exception s.
Honestly, the 5E adventures have sold so many copies for so long relative to their inspirations, I don't know if the originals will overshadow them in the future.

Even though I played 3E, we never really did modules, so i have no basis of comparison, but 5E has more adventure material from WotC at this point, several thousand pages that have generally received good reviews.
 

dave2008

Adventurer
Definitely put me on the "Love It" category for classes. The level of choice just excites me, and like you noted, the split between combat and non-combat feats is something I can't praise enough. Too often it was easy to worry if this feat that could help you do better in your skill of choice was going to delay you in your combat role, keeping you from being optimal when the time came, especially if the feat chain was long towards your particularly desired feat. Not an issue anymore, I can get my skilling on while also make excellent combat choices in several various directions depending upon what I want to do with said class.
I must admit that the separation of combat and non-combat feats (or powers in 4e) just feels a bit to gamist to me. I've lived with it, and I think there is some logic to it, but I never liked being forced to take training (feat or power) in a set of abilities I didn't want or didn't fit my character concept. It is funny what bothers some and not others.
 

Campbell

Relaxed Intensity
I must admit that the separation of combat and non-combat feats (or powers in 4e) just feels a bit to gamist to me. I've lived with it, and I think there is some logic to it, but I never liked being forced to take training (feat or power) in a set of abilities I didn't want or didn't fit my character concept. It is funny what bothers some and not others.
There are plenty of class feats that are mostly useful outside of combat and plenty that are useful in both exploration and encounter mode. Additionally there are skill feats that are extremely useful in combat. There is also not always a clear division between combat encounters and other sorts of encounters. Skills like Diplomacy, Intimidate, Acrobatics, Athletics, Medicine and Knowledge Skills all have action costs that are declared in terms of the action economy and are very useful in various sorts of encounters. You are expected to go into encounter mode whenever you want to zoom in on the action. This can include combat, social encounters, and action scenes like chases.

The separation is more in terms of core competency embedded in your class and branching out through skills.
 

Aldarc

Adventurer
It's Lost Mines.
No surprises there. It seems to be the fan favorite. It's a bit of a shame though that the biggest hit of the edition is its first adventure. Though on the plus side, it means that many people will have experienced it.

That's subjective. They have several great adventures. Tomb of Annihilation, Curse of Strahd, and Out of the Abyss are a few pegs above "good".
I'm just not sure that they are "great," with possibly the exception of Curse of Strahd. CoS, however, does seem more like a genre piece as opposed to a generic module that you can plop into a given world.

Yes, I would say it is quite subjective. I would also say that I ran 3 official 4e adventures, and compared to the 5e ones, they were very unremarkable. Lost Mine of Phandelver IMHO delivers one of the best in D&D history, and should rank in the Top 10 of any edition list.
Curious. Which three 4e adventures did you run? I would say that the major criticism I would lay at 4e adventures is that WotC wasn't really aware of the strengths and weaknesses of the 4e system yet, so it felt as if they were still mostly designing the adventures for a different system than 4e.

Lost Mine of Phandelver is excellent, I'm running it a second time right now for a newbie group and liking it even more the second go around.
Oh, and I want to add 3.0 Red Hand of Doom was another awesome adventure but I never got the chance to run it. But it would make a superb 5e adaptation.
Both Lost Mines of Phandelver, Princes of the Apocalypse, Red Hand of Doom were written by Rich Baker. ;)

Red Hand of Doom is also on my wishlist. I may run it for 5e, but then set it in the Nentir Vale. (Coincidentally, 4e's Nentir Vale setting was also designed by Rich Baker.)

I am currently running Sunless Citadel (a great 3e adventure updated for 5e) for a new player as part of a solo campaign. It is set in the Vale, and I placed it where Kobold Hall is located. The player character is the leader of a patrol squad for Fallcrest, with a rotating selection of NPCs he can select per each mission. In Sunless Citadel, he is searching for the whereabouts of his old squad and captain. I changed Irky Timbers so that he was also a character on that team. So this adventure acts as an introduction to D&D and as an in-game handing-off-the-torch of his old squad to his new one.

BUT...I can't stand running D&D past 10th level. I can recall saying to myself multiple times toward the end of Princes, PCs were 11th or 12 - God, I hate this game. 8th or 9th is typically where I like to end it. I don't use XP either, thank goodness, so I deliberately slow the roll with PC progression. I will keep them at 1st to 8th for a long ass time and enjoy the game, because if it goes on far past that then I quit having fun. PCs are nearly impossible to threaten, they can escape from any situation, and combat encounters take too much work to create a consistent challenge. At low level it is easy to throw an encounter together and it works correctly.
Agreed. I will be slowing down the leveling for the above campaign, but then depower some of the threats. I may make it so that he does not get to level until every squad member has been on a mission.

But anyway, I hear that this is a thread where Zardnaar reviews Pathfinder 2.
 
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Nebulous

Explorer
Curious. Which three 4e adventures did you run? I would say that the major criticism I would lay at 4e adventures is that WotC wasn't really aware of the strengths and weaknesses of the 4e system yet, so it felt as if they were still mostly designing the adventures for a different system than 4e.

Both Lost Mines of Phandelver, Princes of the Apocalypse, Red Hand of Doom were written by Rich Baker. ;)

But anyway, I hear that this is a thread where Zardnaar reviews Pathfinder 2.
Shadowfell, Thunderspire and Pyramid of Shadows. They weren't bad, but if I asked my players what actually happened or the plots of each, I don't think they would remember much.

And I love that Rich Baker is so consistent!
 

Aldarc

Adventurer
Shadowfell, Thunderspire and Pyramid of Shadows. They weren't bad, but if I asked my players what actually happened or the plots of each, I don't think they would remember much.
Okay. Good to know. I hope to eventually use Gardmore Abbey. (One of the PC's squad is a dragonborn paladin who is basically the last remnant of the Order of Bahamut that once controlled the abbey. So he has hooks to that adventure.)

From what I can tell though, most of the praised 4e adventures usually came out of their online Dungeon series, with the Chaos Scar probably receiving the most praise. Edit: Plus, Reavers of Harkenwold.

And I love that Rich Baker is so consistent!
He also has written Forge of Fury, which is the follow-up to Sunless Citadel (written by Bruce Cordell). He was also a designer with the Primeval Thule setting, which gets a lot of praise on this forum as well.

But anyway, Paizo has written some great APs. I would only hope that they produce (1) more sandbox-style adventures, (2) more modules, and (3) some short one-off adventures.
 
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Zardnaar

Adventurer
Paizo is slightly better than WotC at adventure design IMHO.

The 5E adventures have narrowed the gap a lot.
 

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