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PF2e Bestiary: Let's Read and Review!

dave2008

Adventurer
@Aldarc and @CapnZapp , I updated the OP to try to clarify my rankings. Does that help at all?

PS, if there is a particular review you disagree with, I will definitely listen and I don't mind changing things up. Nothing is set in stone :)
 

dave2008

Adventurer
There actually is a list of creatures by type. It precedes creatures by level in the appendix.
Thanks I missed that on my quick skim. I think I missed it because I was expecting something like the creatures be level table with page numbers. Instead it is just a paragraph for each type with the monsters crammed in. Not the most useful presentation, but it is there!

PS. I corrected the OP - thank you!
 

CapnZapp

Adventurer
Your decision to write humongous posts with scores of spoiler tags make it practically impossible to reply with quote, especially on mobile.

About the skum and other critters you seem not to understand why there are "inferior" attack modes.

The skum is provided with a trident attack. I presume monsters prefer to use the equipment they're given.

Unlike 5E disarm is a real thing in PF2, so there is also an unarmed option.

Finally, there's an important distinction hidden behind "agile" attacks. Agile reduces the multi attack penalty from -5 -10 to -4 -8.

This means that my reading of the Skum stat block is crucially different than yours:

The Skum will by default make one Trident attack followed by two claw attacks (unless, of course, it finds something better to do with its actions). An unarmed Skum will instead make one fangs attack again followed by two claw attacks. It will avoid making more than one trident or fangs attack even if it technically could make three.

This means the statement theres no need for any attack but the fangs is inaccurate.


There are a lot of rather subtle rules interactions like that. I probably am missing a couple myself, especially for monsters of higher level, with more special abilities. I really think you are making your job much more difficult by embarking on this project already now, as opposed to in a few months when you have presumably had the chance to really test the game and learn its intricacies.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Thanks I missed that on my quick skim. I think I missed it because I was expecting something like the creatures be level table with page numbers. Instead it is just a paragraph for each type with the monsters crammed in. Not the most useful presentation, but it is there!

PS. I corrected the OP - thank you!
There's also a big table with the creatures in ascending level order, with page numbers. Pages 350-357. At the back, last thing in the book (other than the full page ads for upcoming books).
 

CapnZapp

Adventurer
@Aldarc and @CapnZapp , I updated the OP to try to clarify my rankings. Does that help at all?
Yes, a bit. A "1" rating now comes across as much less of a disappointment.

Still think a scale such as 1-4 is more informative to the reader since you can't just default to a safe non-committal average. Being forced to choose below average (1 or 2) and above average (3 or 4) you must commit yourself to an actual opinion, which is the only reason to read the thread :)

Compare film review sites with the letter grades, where the difference between a B and a C means the reviewer must commit to choosing between "the movie was good but had its flaws" and "the movie was bad but had bright spots"
 

dave2008

Adventurer
There's also a big table with the creatures in ascending level order, with page numbers. Pages 350-357. At the back, last thing in the book (other than the full page ads for upcoming books).
Yes, that is what I was referring to when I expected the creatures by type to look like the creatures by level (at least that is what I intended to say).
 

dave2008

Adventurer
Your decision to write humongous posts with scores of spoiler tags make it practically impossible to reply with quote, especially on mobile.

About the skum and other critters you seem not to understand why there are "inferior" attack modes.

The skum is provided with a trident attack. I presume monsters prefer to use the equipment they're given.

Unlike 5E disarm is a real thing in PF2, so there is also an unarmed option.

Finally, there's an important distinction hidden behind "agile" attacks. Agile reduces the multi attack penalty from -5 -10 to -4 -8.

This means that my reading of the Skum stat block is crucially different than yours:

The Skum will by default make one Trident attack followed by two claw attacks (unless, of course, it finds something better to do with its actions). An unarmed Skum will instead make one fangs attack again followed by two claw attacks. It will avoid making more than one trident or fangs attack even if it technically could make three.

This means the statement theres no need for any attack but the fangs is inaccurate.


There are a lot of rather subtle rules interactions like that. I probably am missing a couple myself, especially for monsters of higher level, with more special abilities. I really think you are making your job much more difficult by embarking on this project already now, as opposed to in a few months when you have presumably had the chance to really test the game and learn its intricacies.
Thanks for the clarification - that does make more sense. Like I said I like that they have it, but you are correct that I missed the interaction with the agile. I will go back through the As and see if I need to makes some adjustments before I head on to the Bs. Thank you again for the comment!
 

dave2008

Adventurer
Yes, a bit. A "1" rating now comes across as much less of a disappointment.

Still think a scale such as 1-4 is more informative to the reader since you can't just default to a safe non-committal average. Being forced to choose below average (1 or 2) and above average (3 or 4) you must commit yourself to an actual opinion, which is the only reason to read the thread :)

Compare film review sites with the letter grades, where the difference between a B and a C means the reviewer must commit to choosing between "the movie was good but had its flaws" and "the movie was bad but had bright spots"
I guess I disagree. If I am forced to commit to a false opinion I don't see how that would be more informative to the reader. There is a truth and a place for Average, IMO.

Although, the total scale is 0-6. So there is more clarity on how I feel about the total monster entry I guess.
 

dave2008

Adventurer
FYI, before I head to the B's I am going to look over the A's again and pay a bit more attention to the trait keywords. It was pointed out that I missed the "Agile" trait on some attacks which change how it would be used.
 

CapnZapp

Adventurer
Well the other choice was a huge wall of text. That, IMO, was worse.
A huge wall of text wouldn't be an improvement from an "reply perspective" so...

(One topic per post is really required if I'm gonna reply properly since deleting huge chunks of text is such a pain on mobile. I am not saying this would be practical in this case. You did not even mention it as an alternative at all however, so here we are )
 

dave2008

Adventurer
(One topic per post is really required if I'm gonna reply properly since deleting huge chunks of text is such a pain on mobile. I am not saying this would be practical in this case. You did not even mention it as an alternative at all however, so here we are )
Ya, I agree that would be best from a responder perspective. I initially rejected it because I wasn't interested in creating an index the linked to 400+/- different reviews. That was really cumbersome on the old site. However, that might not be so bad with the new site as it is really easy to link to another post. I may consider making that change moving forward.
 

dave2008

Adventurer
(One topic per post is really required if I'm gonna reply properly since deleting huge chunks of text is such a pain on mobile. I am not saying this would be practical in this case. You did not even mention it as an alternative at all however, so here we are )
I've looked into this idea a little and I think I will transition this direction. I think it will actually be easier in the long run. I will just link the individual post to the table of contents in the OP.
 

dave2008

Adventurer
Aeon, Arbiter
Art: 3, the art is good, but it doesn't match the description / stats (shortsword)
Stats/Mechanics: 3, It has one trick move and some spells for added depth/complexity as needed. A nice little level 1 creature.
Lore: 1, the Aeons in general get some descent lore, but the Arbiter only gets 3 sentences. Nothing there to make me want to use them.
Final Score: 2/4
 
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dave2008

Adventurer
Aeon, Axiomite
Art: 1, the art is not good IMO. The loose painterly style is not something a particularly like in a bestiary book (I will unfortunately make that comment quite a bit). I would also like to see a representation of its natural form.
Stats/Mechanics: 2, nothing special. I appreciate the fist attack is agile, but I would really like it do something more (like a grapple on a hit or cost lest actions or be used in a reaction)
Lore: 3, the Axiomite gets a good bit of lore (3 paragraphs) with some potential hooks in there.
Final Score: 2/4
 
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dave2008

Adventurer
Aeon, Kolyarut
Art: 2, the art is pretty good but seems a bit out of focus almost (stylistically). It also commits the sin of not matching the description/stats (bastard sword).
Stats/Mechanics: 2, nothing special. Similar comments to the Axiomite, but at level 10 I expect more options. I also wish it had more than just skills and spells to achieve its diplomatic mission (something special), but it does have the tools it needs to fulfill that mission.
Lore: 2, the Kolyarut only gets one paragraph, but it is packed with interesting and useful information.
Final Score: 2/4
 
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dave2008

Adventurer
Aeon, Pleroma
Art: 3, the art is good. I like the crisp clear style, but I expected something a bit more outlandish from the description.
Stats/Mechanics: 2, a pretty standard high level monster; however, it is a bit to reliant on spells and the special abilities are a tad long in the description.
Lore: 2, the Pleroma gets 2 paragraphs that are fairy interesting, but not a lot to grab onto IMO. I would like a little more from a level 20 monster.
Final Score: 2/6
 
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dave2008

Adventurer
OK, I have updated the OP once again. I have changed the ranking system to be 0-4 (from 0-2) and the final score is now an average of he three category scores (instead of just adding them together). I have also added the reviews directly to the comments section with links in the ToC (posts #2 - #5.
 

dave2008

Adventurer
Alghollthu, Skum (Ulat-Kini)
Art: 3, the art is good, but I wish it wasn't partially cut of by the page edge
Stats/Mechanics: 3, a nice variety of options for a low level creature.
Lore: 3, a good bit of lore for a low level mook and enough there to find a hook or two.
Final Score: 3/4
 
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