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PF2 and the adventure day

CapnZapp

Adventurer
To my personal surprise, the thing one of my players said he disliked most about 5E was the need to have X encounters a day.

That is, have less and the long-rest classes gain the upper hand; have more and the short-rest classes gain the advantage.

Now, what, if any, discussion about encounter expectations is there regarding Pathfinder 2?
 
To my personal surprise, the thing one of my players said he disliked most about 5E was the need to have X encounters a day.
I think that's a common view, and not just about 5e. I know GMs (for 3e and 4e) who feel the same way. They want to present an exciting encounter. It's hard to do four or five resource-spending encounters per day without being too "gamist". (Fitting five encounters into an environment is more difficult than coming up with five numerically balanced encounters, IMO/IME.)

I think Paizo would avoid a lot of discussion about "encounter expectations" because it would sound "too much" like 4e. (That's my favorite edition, and 4e having encounter-specific resources is one reason... but there's quite a few people who do not like that.) I think that's the case even if Paizo has a good tool.
 

Zardnaar

Explorer
The set encounter design thing is a big drawback of modern D&D. Combined with the hit point attrition model it causes various issues.
 

FrogReaver

Explorer
IMO. No system with vanician style casting can be balanced between classes without extending the adventuring day to 20+ rounds of combat.

Whether you have short rests and short rest style abilities, the problem still persists.
 

CapnZapp

Adventurer
The set encounter design thing is a big drawback of modern D&D. Combined with the hit point attrition model it causes various issues.
This is a comment that just makes the status quo out to be some goddamn god-given natural constant. It might appear sage and wise but I find it adds nothing to the discussion.
 

CapnZapp

Adventurer
IMO. No system with vanician style casting can be balanced between classes without extending the adventuring day to 20+ rounds of combat.

Whether you have short rests and short rest style abilities, the problem still persists.
Yes, but back in the 3.x days we didn't talk about long and short rests.

Could it be that introducing those terms; formalizing the dichotomy, could be a bad thing?
 

Tony Vargas

Adventurer
To my personal surprise, the thing one of my players said he disliked most about 5E was the need to have X encounters a day.
That's just D&D from time immemorial (if you can't remember 1974, anyway).

5e is nice enough to share an approximate value of X (ok, and Y, short rests) at which it's nominally intended to balance.

Since Paizo is sensibly done with trying to be more D&D than D&D, PF2 needn't stay with that attrition paradigm.

Yes, but back in the 3.x days we didn't talk about long and short rests.
But, you still took them in 3.x: slept to prepare spells, took a few minutes out after every encounter to use the WoCLW. Really, no different from sleeping to memorize spells and resting (maybe even binding wounds, if your DM was nice) the balance of the turn after combat in, 1e.

Short rests are only meaningfully distinct from encounters, though, because 5e made them take an hour. And that's only a balance concern because a few classes have more significant short-rest resources than most.

Could it be that introducing those terms; formalizing the dichotomy, could be a bad thing?
No.

And, it's not a dichotomy, it's more complex than that. There are short & long rests, encounters, and there are short/long rest-recharge, at-will, and situational abilities.

5e has high-power/versatility long-rest-recharge heavy classes (the traditional full casters, plus Bard); moderate-power/versatility long-rest-recharge & strong at-will classes (the traditional half-casters, plus EK & AT), a high-power/versatility short-rest-recharge heavy class (the warlock), a high-power/no-versatility long-rest-recharge & strong at-will class (the barbarian), moderate-power/versatility short-test recharge & strong at-will (Monk, plus BM), modest-power/slight-versatility short-rest-rechage plus strong at-will(Champion), and no-recharge, fairly situational (Thief, Assassin).

Hard to believe PF2 will have a hard time competing with /that/, whatever it does - yet it not only must, it has essentially no chance.
 
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CapnZapp

Adventurer
That's just D&D from time immemorial (if you can't remember 1974, anyway).

5e is nice enough to share an approximate value of X (ok, and Y, short rests) at which it's nominally intended to balance.

Since Paizo is sensibly done with trying to be more D&D than D&D, PF2 needn't stay with that attrition paradigm.

But, you still took them in 3.x: slept to prepare spells, took a few minutes out after every encounter to use the WoCLW. Really, no different from sleeping to memorize spells and resting (maybe even binding wounds, if your DM was nice) the balance of the turn after combat in, 1e.
You're really good at stating what we already know, did you know that? :)

Short rests are only meaningfully distinct from encounters, though, because 5e made them take an hour. And that's only a balance concern because a few classes have more significant short-rest resources than most.
So... there is a difference, then.

Now, apply this discovery and do over your post, and things might get interesting :)
 

Parmandur

Adventurer
To my personal surprise, the thing one of my players said he disliked most about 5E was the need to have X encounters a day.

That is, have less and the long-rest classes gain the upper hand; have more and the short-rest classes gain the advantage.

Now, what, if any, discussion about encounter expectations is there regarding Pathfinder 2?
IIRC, there wasn't really much in the encounter building department in the playtest document: they provided prebuilt scenarios for people to run and report, probably to help them get the data to calculate the guidelines. No solid info on the results until the final game is out, I reckon.
 

Tony Vargas

Adventurer
WotC spent a lot of time and resources on developing the asymmetrical system, certainly.
Time? Yes, like 2 years, and the encounter guidelines weren't even ready until /after/ we'd starting running HotDQ.
Resources? Maybe not s'much: the future of D&D was uncertain during those two years, and it didn't seem like Hasbro/WotC was giving Mearls a lot of $$$ to make 5e happen.

PF's future seems uncertain, but it sounds like Paizo /is/ putting some resources into it - didn't you (or someone in another thread) say that they had a lot of ex-WotC designers working on it?

You're really good at stating what we already know, did you know that? :)
Thank you, it's odd that we have to keep going over it, but people keep popping up with statements about this or that edition that imply it's just done something shocking, when, in fact, it's nothing remotely new. ;P

So... there is a difference, then.
Now, apply this discovery and do over your post, and things might get interesting :)
But, it's something we already know!

Since 5e went and made short rests a full hour, and added a couple classes with significant short-rest-recharge resources, it made not just the ratio of Encounters/day dreadfully important for imposing class balance & encounter balance, it also made the ratio of short:long rests, and short-rests:encounters comparably important.

So, Dr. Mearls prescription for a balanced game is not just "take 6-8 encounters and get a good night's sleep," it's 6-8 medium-hard encounters, punctuated by 2-3 short rests, per long rest.

What does that mean for PF2?

Well, since they've shared nothing, not much, except that it shouldn't be super-difficult to make encounter design and pacing significantly simpler than in 5e.
 
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Parmandur

Adventurer
Time? Yes, like 2 years, and the encounter guidelines weren't even ready until /after/ we'd starting running HotDQ.
Resources? Maybe not s'much: the future of D&D was uncertain during those two years, and it didn't seem like Hasbro/WotC was giving Mearls a lot of $$$ to make 5e happen.

PF's future seems uncertain, but it sounds like Paizo /is/ putting some resources into it - didn't you (or someone in another thread) say that they had a lot of ex-WotC designers working on it?

Thank you, it's odd that we have to keep going over it, but people keep popping up with statements about this or that edition that imply it's just done something shocking, when, in fact, it's nothing remotely new. ;P


But, it's something we already know!

Since 5e went and made short rests a full hour, and added a couple classes with significant short-rest-recharge resources, it made not just the ratio of Encounters/day dreadfully important for imposing class balance & encounter balance, it also made the ratio of short:long rests, and short-rests:encounters comparably important.

So, Dr. Mearls prescription for a balanced game is not just "take 6-8 encounters and get a good night's sleep," it's 6-8 medium-hard encounters, punctuated by 2-3 short rests, per long rest.

What does that mean for PF2?

Well, since they've shared nothing, not much, except that it shouldn't be super-difficult to make encounter design and pacing significantly simpler than in 5e.
I meant the multi tiered resource management, more than the encounter guidelines (which are, in the end, merely guidelines). The draft guidelines worked, as evidenced by Lost Mines not having the same issues as Hoard of the Dragon Queen (difference between setting the dial to "beginner" versus "deadly" on unstable ground).

3.x and 4E era WotC people are working in PF2, yes.
 

Ancalagon

Dusty Dragon
Well, a friend got his books, so start reading and answer the question! :p

Is there a "short rest vs long rest" class thing going on in PF2?
 

Zardnaar

Explorer
If it's more daily based low level would have 1 or 2 encounters and grow into having more as they level up.

If monsters are tougher than 5E that could make encounter design easier. Not a fan of the 6 to 8 encounters plus 2 short rests paradigm if 5E.
 

Colder

Villager
Is there a "short rest vs long rest" class thing going on in PF2?
It's weird. So there are these "powers" that players can choose to take based on their class, right? And these "powers" use a point resource that you can regain by doing a class-specific fluff activity for 10 minutes. Sounds like a short rest/encounter power equivalent to help non-spellcasters get some burst ability like in 5e, right? But it isn't so.

Those "powers" are called Focus Spells, and they're restricted to spellcasting classes plus monks and paladins. They're magic! I didn't expect that. I guess that while similar to short rest resources, their purpose is different than how they're used in other systems. I think that since spell lists are mostly homogenized, Paizo is using focus spells mostly to differentiate spellcasters' portfolios and give them more longevity, plus give pseudo-magic classes magic abilities.

Friggin weird.
 
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wakedown

Villager
Hard to believe PF2 will have a hard time competing with /that/, whatever it does - yet it not only must, it has essentially no chance.
I've come to believe it's unfair to try to evaluate PF2 as needing to compete with 5E. I don't view 13th Age or SotDL as needing to compete with 5E, why should PF2 need to be viewed that way?

PF2 probably had the barest minimum of actual playtesting, their design team was on their heels from the moment they announced their playtest last Summer and scrambling to make updates and then lob it to their printer in (March?). It's possible there were less than 1000 play-testing hours all-in of whatever the final rules became of PF2 which probably gives it one of the lowest ratio of actual-play relative to attempted scope/ambition.

With the production of any TTRPG it's like a balancing act - how many rules are going into the pot? 100 rules? 10,000 rules? How many creative chiefs are providing input direction? Sole author? 10 contributors? Then, how many hours of vetting of the near final rules do you have?

13th Age probably has 1/100th of the actual rules of PF2 and only had 2 creative guides in Heinsoo & Tweet. PF2 probably had over a dozen Paizo staff putting things into the pot (voice down the hall: "Oh, let's add charismatic goblins too!!" and 100X the rules and potentially the same amount of field testing. Add to that they were light on veteran designers having lost so many in the years leading up. They weren't operating on a "when it tastes right" schedule either, but more of a "this thing has to hit the printer in 6 months" schedule.

Given the circumstances of its assembly, it's an alright product but wasn't part of a strategic plan for mass appeal to compete with D&D.
 

Tony Vargas

Adventurer
I've come to believe it's unfair to try to evaluate PF2 as needing to compete with 5E. I don't view 13th Age or SotDL as needing to compete with 5E, why should PF2 need to be viewed that way?
Every RPG is competing with 5e - just to be noticed.

13th Age probably has 1/100th of the actual rules of PF2 and only had 2 creative guides in Heinsoo & Tweet.
It did have a longer playtest, though, and even beat 5e to market (and, frankly, on the mechanical level hits a lot of 5e's goals - fast combat, support for TotM, etc) more squarely than 5e did. Even so, it's hardly a huge success.

Given the circumstances of its assembly, it's an alright product but wasn't part of a strategic plan for mass appeal to compete with D&D.
Considering it's a follow-on to a game that /did/ successfully compete with D&D (albeit, by out-D&Ding D&D, via the OSR), though, I have to wonder about that.
 

wakedown

Villager
Considering it's a follow-on to a game that /did/ successfully compete with D&D (albeit, by out-D&Ding D&D, via the OSR), though, I have to wonder about that.
They kind of lucked into their prominent position the first time around rather than had a plan to get to get there. So many groups weren't ready to give up on 3E yet and 4E wasn't the product they were looking for. They had feedback from a lot of their fans like "yes! 3e lives!" and they took those words from the 3e fans' mouths and threw it up as their slogan.

If you look at the PF2 launch in at least the FLGSs around me - there's very little full court press by Paizo to launch it in a physical form. There's no slogan that embodies their angle to suggest they want to compete with 5E - "5e with more builds and feats!" (?) or 3E/3.PF - "3.PF with better martial-caster equalization!" (?) or 4E - "4E but with better presentation of powers!" (?)


If I had to tease out the position of PF2 right now, I'd say it's a product meant for the crowd that is still left in their organized play campaign, and maybe some people who recently exited it that they hope to win back. It's like "hey there's a whole character building optimizer mini-game here!" to the players and a "hey this will be more balanced to run with less cheese" to the GMs. If I had to guess, they maybe still have 10,000 people doing organized play each month and the company has basically re-scaled to live off that audience now and to them any success beyond that is a bonus.
 

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