Pathfinder 2E Pathfinder 2 and support for other playing styles/subgenres


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CapnZapp

Legend
Just curious, have you experimented with backporting the monsters (or at least their special abilities) to 1e?
Afraid not. I have no plans on ever returning to 3E/PF1 for basically one reason only: the way monsters are created like characters. After having seen my NPCs get destroyed without ever taking a single action despite spending hours on creating them one too many times, I'm done with d20 for life. I could conceivably enter a d20 campaign as a player as long as I never again have to create monsters for it :)
When I quit 3E I also was burned out on the utter imbalance between character options, but with the lens of nostalgia I'm prepared to ignore that bit...

I'm currently playing Dungeon Crawl Classics (as the DM or Judge). The campaign is fairly atypical, being a troupe-style campaign set in a humanocentric Sword & Sorcery world inspired by the classic and deeply flawed ;) Barbarian movies of the 80's. I'm having a genuine blast, but I realize I won't use DCC for regular (Forgotten Realmsian) D&D campaigns.

Currently the only serious candidate for such future plans is to return to 5E. We'll see if that means regular 5E or Level Up A5E.
 

Afraid not. I have no plans on ever returning to 3E/PF1 for basically one reason only: the way monsters are created like characters. After having seen my NPCs get destroyed without ever taking a single action despite spending hours on creating them one too many times, I'm done with d20 for life. I could conceivably enter a d20 campaign as a player as long as I never again have to create monsters for it :)
When I quit 3E I also was burned out on the utter imbalance between character options, but with the lens of nostalgia I'm prepared to ignore that bit...

There's nothing quite like looking at an NPC's statblock and seeing two dozen feats you have to look up. I get putting a lot of feats for PCs (which the players monitor), but god help me I don't need to see the half a dozen feats the local blacksmith has. Moving away from building everything as characters was one of the smartest moves for post-3.x d20 systems.
 

Retreater

Legend
There's nothing quite like looking at an NPC's statblock and seeing two dozen feats you have to look up. I get putting a lot of feats for PCs (which the players monitor), but god help me I don't need to see the half a dozen feats the local blacksmith has. Moving away from building everything as characters was one of the smartest moves for post-3.x d20 systems.
I liked the way monsters were built in 4e and 13th Age. I'm not sure how to do it in PF2 - I don't recall having seen simple monster creation rules.
 

Luceilia

Explorer
There's nothing quite like looking at an NPC's statblock and seeing two dozen feats you have to look up. I get putting a lot of feats for PCs (which the players monitor), but god help me I don't need to see the half a dozen feats the local blacksmith has. Moving away from building everything as characters was one of the smartest moves for post-3.x d20 systems.
In a way it's a strength of the system with sufficient system mastery.

Rather than being forced to come up with unique stuff (although unique stuff is awesome and any time you're inspired it's fantastic to make it) I can grab any creature, slap on the feats and possibly class levels/spells/gear I want and bam done.

I don't have any personal experience with Cap's complaint about feats and creation time, for me by the time I was making higher level adversaries I was also intimately familiar with the system and could slap them together in 2-3 minutes (of course it probably helps I don't particularly care about 'challenging the players.' I take the CR system at face value and lowball a bit, because I prefer an environment where players can really deeply resonate with a character without fear that they could die at any moment. They theoretically can, of course, but by the way I run the odds of that are incredibly low (until resurrection is on the table, then I crank things up a bit.)
 
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I liked the way monsters were built in 4e and 13th Age. I'm not sure how to do it in PF2 - I don't recall having seen simple monster creation rules.

I integrated some ideas from 13th Age into my 5E game, but I made it a bit more complex; I liked the "This die roll result means they took this action", which I did a variation of. It was cool to have gnolls that had a sort of randomized programming, whether it be to shield bash, whack, or bite.

Like, the actual building rules? I don't think they are particularly complicated, though they do go through all the ins and outs so it is a bit lengthy.

In a way it's a strength of the system with sufficient system mastery.

Rather than being forced to come up with unique stuff (although unique stuff is awesome and any time you're inspired it's fantastic to make it) I can grab any monster or race, slap on the feats and possibly class levels/spells/gear I want and bam done.

I don't have any personal experience with Cap's complaint about feats and creation time, for me by the time I was making higher level adversaries I was also intimately familiar with the system and could slap them together in 2-3 minutes (of course it probably helps I don't particularly care about 'challenging the players.' I take the CR system at face value and lowball a bit, because I prefer an environment where players can really deeply resonate with a character without fear that they could die at any moment. They theoretically can, of course, but by the way I run the odds of that are incredibly low (until resurrection is on the table, then I crank things up a bit.)

Certainly helps. I mean, I'm more okay with spell lists on NPCs because I typically know spells better than I know random feats. But I also get people who don't want expansive spell lists for monsters because it can just bog things down. But building monsters as full character misses that I'd rather just have what they can do rather than needing to see how it got there.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
I liked the way monsters were built in 4e and 13th Age. I'm not sure how to do it in PF2 - I don't recall having seen simple monster creation rules.
Paizo has published monster creation guidelines.

I find them dry and colorless, however. It's all numbers and tables. Things like "a difficult melee brawler at this level should have between 26-29 AC" for example, and then onwards for all the chief stats of the game.

But there is none of the "world building" stuff; the stuff that sets Golarion apart from any random world; nothing of the cool things you see in the monster manuals. Things like how all kobolds (or gnolls etc) share certain traits, strengths and advantages.

What all these tables and procedural steps boils down to is you will get complete but basic monster stats compatible with the bestiary. It's an alternative to doing just that - checking out the bestiary for a comparable beastie (similar level and combat role) and then just stealing its numbers.

I found this much more inspiring, since the Bestiary doesn't just give you the fundamental numbers; it also provides loads of examples of unique powers, and it showcases which traits and abilities Paizo thinks are suitable for various monsters.

In comparison, the monster creation rules read like having to read through your dishwasher manual... and there aren't any "secrets" to monster creation, or at least, none Paizo shares with us.

Cheers

PS. Neither method is what I'd call "simple". PF2 just isn't a simple game.

Even though the monsters - thank the gods! - doesn't touch player character generation (and its thousands of feats etc), it's still a fairly involved procedure. And you do want to follow the guidelines! For elite creatures leveled higher than the heroes, you need to be somewhat careful; "just winging it" may work in forgiving D&D derivatives, but not here.
 
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