My Biggest Concern for Pathfinder 2e

FrogReaver

Adventurer
My biggest concern is that only at level enemies are going to be fun to fight against.

Let me elaborate. A +4 bonus to AC nearly halves the damage you take. A +4 bonus to attack nearly doubles the damage you deal. 4 more levels linearly increases hp as well. There's also the issue of the potential for more damage per from magical weapons.

In short, your power increases by a factor of somewhere between times 4 and times 10 every 4 levels. Likewise that means someone 4 levels lower than you is only about 25% to 10% of your power.

If monsters follow this same pattern based on their level and I believe that they will based on my preliminary browsing of monsters, then it's going to be nearly impossible to fight enemies very far outside your level range.

This also could greatly affect sandbox play...

Will enemies even 4 levels higher than you be fun to fight? Will you miss to often? Will the crit to often? Thoughts?
 

Parmandur

Legend
My biggest concern is that only at level enemies are going to be fun to fight against.

Let me elaborate. A +4 bonus to AC nearly halves the damage you take. A +4 bonus to attack nearly doubles the damage you deal. 4 more levels linearly increases hp as well. There's also the issue of the potential for more damage per from magical weapons.

In short, your power increases by a factor of somewhere between times 4 and times 10 every 4 levels. Likewise that means someone 4 levels lower than you is only about 25% to 10% of your power.

If monsters follow this same pattern based on their level and I believe that they will based on my preliminary browsing of monsters, then it's going to be nearly impossible to fight enemies very far outside your level range.

This also could greatly affect sandbox play...

Will enemies even 4 levels higher than you be fun to fight? Will you miss to often? Will the crit to often? Thoughts?
My understanding is that the intention is to make +-9 Levels doable, though 9 Levels above is doable but crazy dangerous.

Unsure about the practice.
 

Campbell

Relaxed Intensity
My biggest concern right now is debuff stacking. Buff stacking is fairly constrained, but there are a number of potent debuffs that when stacked on top of each other could neuter more threatening encounters. A spell like Ray of Enfeeblement is just as good at 15th level as 1st level and can be cast from a 1st level spell slot.
 

CapnZapp

Hero
then it's going to be nearly impossible to fight enemies very far outside your level range.
I believe this is fully intentional, something the devs go into with open eyes.

Look at the guidelines regarding encounter building. You'll notice the level range is your level plus minus 4.

So a monster four levels higher than you is indeed regarded as the most difficult thing you could take on. Even four against one, it might take one of you down. If it has adds, the encounter immediately becomes ultra-lethal and you should probably flee.

Everything indicates this is by design, with the devs being completely aware.
 

CapnZapp

Hero
My understanding is that the intention is to make +-9 Levels doable, though 9 Levels above is doable but crazy dangerous.

Unsure about the practice.
My understanding, on the other hand, is that level+4 is the maximum they even offer guidelines on.
 

kenada

Explorer
My biggest concern is that only at level enemies are going to be fun to fight against.

Let me elaborate. A +4 bonus to AC nearly halves the damage you take. A +4 bonus to attack nearly doubles the damage you deal. 4 more levels linearly increases hp as well. There's also the issue of the potential for more damage per from magical weapons.

In short, your power increases by a factor of somewhere between times 4 and times 10 every 4 levels. Likewise that means someone 4 levels lower than you is only about 25% to 10% of your power.

If monsters follow this same pattern based on their level and I believe that they will based on my preliminary browsing of monsters, then it's going to be nearly impossible to fight enemies very far outside your level range.

This also could greatly affect sandbox play...

Will enemies even 4 levels higher than you be fun to fight? Will you miss to often? Will the crit to often? Thoughts?
I’m trying to understand the scenario where PCs would be expected to fight and win against much higher level enemies. In PF1, one might do that because optimized parties could be way stronger than the system’s expectations. PF2 is designed not to have that problem, though it’s new, and we don’t know yet whether people will find ways to do that again. Since you said you didn’t play PF1, I’m curious what scenarios you have in mind.

For me and my sandbox, that level difference matters was one of the things that appealed to me when deciding to convert from 5e to PF2. It was less that I wanted higher level foes to be untouchable and more that I wanted my PCs to be able to come back to a (formerly) dangerous enemy and be able to defeat it.

From what I understand, the Gamemastery Guide will have information on flattening out the math. People on the Paizo forums have reported that they removed +level during the playtest without any issues, so most of what’s needed is new guidelines on encounter building (since the ones in the “Game Mastering” chapter of the CRB assume the difficulty current scaling).
 

CapnZapp

Hero
I’m trying to understand the scenario where PCs would be expected to fight and win against much higher level enemies.
I think the sentiment is more "I want my players' party to be able to survive a large variety of monsters". Note survive, not necessarily win. As opposed to your hero getting automatically one-shotted by any monster X levels higher than you.

In other words, I think the sentiment is reasonable as long as it isn't narrowed in.
 

CapnZapp

Hero
From what I understand, the Gamemastery Guide will have information on flattening out the math. People on the Paizo forums have reported that they removed +level during the playtest without any issues, so most of what’s needed is new guidelines on encounter building (since the ones in the “Game Mastering” chapter of the CRB assume the difficulty current scaling).
Personally, I think that's the easy part. Easy as in really obvious, that is.

What I would prefer myself, is a reissued Bestiary with all the math changed. That would be truly useful and convenient, saving me from having to remember each and every single instance of subtracting level. Remember, you can't slip up even once, no matter how much else you have on your DM plate, however tired or distracted you might ever be...
 

kenada

Explorer
I think making that adjustment will be the domain of tools that can do the math automatically.

I think the sentiment is more "I want my players' party to be able to survive a large variety of monsters". Note survive, not necessarily win. As opposed to your hero getting automatically one-shotted by any monster X levels higher than you.
Sure, but “not winning” usually looks like “everyone dies” in D&D and Pathfinder. PCs have few tools they can use reliably to disengage from an enemy once a fight has started.
 

RSIxidor

Explorer
From what I understand, the Gamemastery Guide will have information on flattening out the math. People on the Paizo forums have reported that they removed +level during the playtest without any issues, so most of what’s needed is new guidelines on encounter building (since the ones in the “Game Mastering” chapter of the CRB assume the difficulty current scaling).
I'm interested in this. Wouldn't this also affect the progressive failure/success system in some ways? I really love bounded accuracy, and not inflating numbers so constantly. I might wait on the GM guide before jumping in just to get a complete picture on this... Or I might do all the math and see how well it works.
 

Lucas Yew

Explorer
I rather support fantasy super-heroics, so I'm totally fine with high level characters slaughtering troll armies naked and unarmed, with the high modifiers representing that massive gulf of skill difference. Even better if it's running on a universe in which such incidents are treated as logical common sense...
 

Campbell

Relaxed Intensity
As it stands a given creature stays relevant over a range of 9 levels in a 20 level game. I think that's pretty good. There are also tools in the Bestiary to raise or lower the creature's level by 2 for stronger or weaker versions of the same creature which extends relevance to +- 6 for a useful range of 13 levels.
 

Parmandur

Legend
As it stands a given creature stays relevant over a range of 9 levels in a 20 level game. I think that's pretty good. There are also tools in the Bestiary to raise or lower the creature's level by 2 for stronger or weaker versions of the same creature which extends relevance to +- 6 for a useful range of 13 levels.
Ahhh, That's what I was thinking of: +-4 Levels for a 9 Level spread.
 

CapnZapp

Hero
As it stands a given creature stays relevant over a range of 9 levels in a 20 level game. I think that's pretty good. There are also tools in the Bestiary to raise or lower the creature's level by 2 for stronger or weaker versions of the same creature which extends relevance to +- 6 for a useful range of 13 levels.
Saying the monster stays relevant for 13 levels sounds manageable, sounds normal, as if there's no real difference to PF2. But I wager your definition of usefulness is likely a theoretical construct only.

The real take away here is that level bands or ranges are much more narrow in PF2.

Certainly a 5E DM is not used to being told to think twice before having a PL+4 CR monster.

To me the useful thing to say would be use caution, to openly agree PF2 is much more sensitive to level, and that this can trap the unwary GM.

That doesn't make it a worse game. But trying to downplay the difference might.
 

GrahamWills

Adventurer
I think we fought a level+4 monster in the play test. At least I recall something that would hit us pretty much every time, and the main point was to avoid taking criticals. It made for some interesting tactical decisions -- my character started using three actions for move - attack - run away (spring-attack style) and the tankiest of us was raising shield all the time.

Haven't read the base book yet, but I would assume there is the usual "how to build an encounter" section that explains how scaling works. Is there?
 

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