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Some things I love and hate in Trailblazer

Malfi

Villager
I recently read the trailblazer rulebook and I liked it a lot.


Some things irked me though and maybe the good people at bad axe games could chime in explaining the design philosophy behind some of them.


The fighters expert weapon proficiency.


I really hated the old weapon focus feats because they forced you to only use one specific weapon.
The trailblazer ones I found much more to my liking but then I read the expert weapon proficiency rules. Whats the point of having a more widely applicable weapon focus and a so specific expert weapon proficiency? For me the expert weapon proficiency is trailblazers weapon focus:p.


I am thinking of making it apply to weapon groups like pathfinders fighter ones. (axes, swords etc.)
What do you think?


Combat reaction dodge is another love it hate it rule.


It makes melee classes better but it also makes monsters better against melee classes! A fighter now has to deal with dodging bullets and grey renders which is pretty disappointing.


The magic needs hero points system seems a bit too hit and miss to me.


When you have general rules like:


Rote spells include:
All 0-level spells.
Any single-target spell with a duration of 1 min/level or less.
Restricted spells include:
Any area of effect or multiple-target spell.
Any spell with a duration of 10 minutes/level or longer.
Any Conjuration (creation, calling, or teleport).


Then you leave spells like Ray of enfeeblement, Flesh to stone and Otilukes Iressistable Dancing unaffected and nerf spells like Scintillating Pattern, Cone of cold and Meteor swarm.
It also seems that by taking the extra action points enchantments you can easily go around using mostly restricted spells (I assume the extra actions points enchantments stack)..


That said they are as good as general guidelines go and the DM can easily houserule the rote or restriced type to whatever spell he likes.


The ranger got no love.


Comapring him to the paladin, the fighter and the barbarian the ranger seems to have gotten few new cool stuff. He also already had 2 good saves so he gets "shafted" there as well.
 
The ranger got no love.
Well, I could see that take, but with a closer look . . .

Consider:
  • +1 to Initiative, increasing to +2 at 7th, then +3 at 12th, then +4 at 17th.
  • Adds uncanny dodge at 4th
  • Adds improved uncanny dodge at 8th
  • Full druid spell list to draw from
  • Casts spells sooner
  • Casts up to 5th level druid spells at 19th level.
  • Adds half class level to Survival checks
I suppose the paladin's great amount of abilities that were once 1/day being changed to 1/rest gives the paladin a power boost

Paladins get:
  • 4+Int skill points instead of 2+Int
  • Tower shield
  • Full cleric spell list (which takes away bless weapon and holy sword as spells)
  • cast spells sooner, and up to 5th level cleric spells at 19th level
  • Divine weapon adds bless weapon and holy sword back as class abilities
  • At 5th level, doesn't lose smite with miss
  • Divine mercy ability adds other spells in addition to remove disease
I'm not sure the paladin gets a whole lot extra beyond the power boost coming from the change to the rest mechanic.
 

Wulf Ratbane

Villager
The fighters expert weapon proficiency.


I really hated the old weapon focus feats because they forced you to only use one specific weapon.
The trailblazer ones I found much more to my liking but then I read the expert weapon proficiency rules. Whats the point of having a more widely applicable weapon focus and a so specific expert weapon proficiency? For me the expert weapon proficiency is trailblazers weapon focus:p.
Expert Weapon proficiency allows you to take any weapon and (with only a couple of exceptions) make it perform like any other weapon.

Which means that you don't need to carry a dagger to use as a light weapon, and a flail to use for tripping and disarming, and a long sword to carry for its good damage and threat range, and a battle axe for its good crit multiplier. You just pick a weapon and, over the course of your career, you will be able to get that weapon to the same die type, crit range, crit multiplier, finessability, bonus maneuvers, etc.

The only thing you can't do is make a light weapon into a two-handed/reach weapon and vice versa.

Expert Weapon Proficiency also doesn't come into play until 3rd level so (unlike Weapon Focus) you aren't stuck with a decision before you even begin play. You've got some time to figure out what the party needs, and what magic items you might find (which works out nicely with the Bind Item Action Point Enhancement).


I am thinking of making it apply to weapon groups like pathfinders fighter ones. (axes, swords etc.)
What do you think?
I think that's way too powerful, in addition to being unnecessary.


Combat reaction dodge is another love it hate it rule.


It makes melee classes better but it also makes monsters better against melee classes! A fighter now has to deal with dodging bullets and grey renders which is pretty disappointing.
If your grey render is dodging the fighter's attacks then you're not using dodge to its full potential. Dodge the wizard's ray of enfeeblement, yes. Dodge touch attacks. Dodge attacks that come with unpleasant side effects (improved grab, swallow whole, rend, etc.)

Fighters, and grey renders, and other "big bags of hit points" are not worried about losing hit points to run-of-the-mill attacks.

It also seems that by taking the extra action points enchantments you can easily go around using mostly restricted spells (I assume the extra actions points enchantments stack).
No, they don't stack. That's why the text is included to explain how many you get, total. Six base. Seven if you take Extra once. Eight if you take it twice. Nine if you take it three times. Ten if you take it four times.

But definitely not 6+7+8+9+10.

The ranger got no love.
Well, I could see that take, but with a closer look . . .
SNIP good list.

You also forgot to mention the Combat Styles, which is much more flexible than before. You're not longer "treated as" having a feat: you actually get a bonus feat, which means you can integrate those feats with your normal feat acquisition schedule, mix things around, etc.
 

Malfi

Villager
Its good to see the thinking behind the rules, thanks for answering.

EDIT: Regarding extra action points I was actually thinking 6+1+2+3+4 (certainly not 6+7+8+9+10) and I am glad this isn't the case.
 
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ValhallaGH

Villager
My party runs out of action points after about 5 encounters. They are epic for those 5 encounters, but are running on various AP rewards after that point. They've usually got 2, among the whole party, by the time they reach a big bad evil guy.

So, yeah, Restricted spells balance out exactly as written in my experience.
 

Malfi

Villager
Interesting. What was the cr compared to the pc's level in these 5 encounters?
 
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ValhallaGH

Villager
Interesting. What was the cr compared to the pc's level in these 5 encounters?
CR about equal to Level. They use it to reroll attacks, add to attacks, and generally get away with all power attack all the time behavior. Every now and then they use it for a save (getting more common as we hit 11th level) but that's just so they aren't sitting around helplessly when they want to power attack for full.

To clarify, it's not a given five encounters. It's the first five encounters after they level up. Every. Single. Level.
 

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