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PF2E What Would You Want from PF2?

Zardnaar

Legend
I loved 3.x

I just couldn't stand creating another high-level NPC caster that lived for seconds but took hours to build.

I guess my point is that there is a lot of things that you can do to "cater" to people playing Pathfinder (d20).

And if one of those things were "backwards compatibility", I would absolutely had shut up, since if Paizo had gone ahead and made a "Pathfinder 1.5" all the power to them. It wouldn't be something I personally would have looked into, but congrats to everyone up for another decade of "d20 catering".

But since that's not the case, I'm here to speak my two cents. And that is to hope against hope Paizo will tap into the probably significant market share that's ready for some lovely player crunch (which d20/PF does splendidly) with classes, feats, subsystems, magic items and so on... just as long as the DM isn't buried in the same amount of crunch, and that the lesson of finally getting rid of LFQW isn't un-learned. (How this is accomplished is not nearly as important than that it is accomplished, and I'm certainly not married to specific 5E implementations)

Have a nice day!

Its sort of where I am heading with my hombrew. Uses the 5E engine and numbers but things like Fort/Ref/Will from 3E, 5E DCs, and it has microfeats. Uses B/X xp though, no archetypes (build your own with feats), and the Fighter is kind of like the Chamion from 5E, tweaked and mixed with elements of 3E and AD&D (scaling saves, feat every second level). Its raw at the moment and only has 5 incomplete classes (aiming for 8).
 

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Staffan

Adventurer
I’d like to see assumed builds. Basically assumed default paths for characters. So people who dislike character building (aka homework before playing) can just sit down and roll dice. But with options that you can swap out for different options.
I'm hoping to see something along the lines of what they did for Starfinder, where each class comes with four builds that show some things you could make with the class. For example, the Operative class has Hacker, Investigator, Thief, and Trailblazer. Each build lists a suggested background, ability score prioritization, specialization, class abilities, spells (where applicable), feats, and skills. It's not quite enough to just pick up and go, but it does channel you in a particular direction.
 

Retreater

Legend
This is me being convinced that after playing 5E most people will not accept playing a linear fighter together with quadratic casters anymore.

To be fair, I think the only edition of D&D to get close to balancing fighters and wizards is 4th edition. And we all know how that went. So I think everyone is more than okay with there being vast differences in power level among fighters and casters. (5E doesn't do a significant better job at balance than 3.x/PF did.)
 

Zardnaar

Legend
5E not perfect but its a lot better than 3.X. Concentration, less spell slots and less powerful spells, no cheap wands and scrolls.

I don't think most people care about balance relative to how easy the game is to play.
 

Jason Bulmahn

Explorer
Chiming in here...

Making Pathfinder easier to play, with less fiddly exception-based mechanics, was one of our big goals. We wanted everyone to be able to learn a relatively simple core of the game (the proficiency system, three action combat, and the basic actions that go along with it), and then allow their character choices, their decisions guide the level of complexity that they experience at the table. Want a bunch of techy combat options, pick those. Want a simpler skill character, no problem. Want a spell caster with a number of different ways to cast spells, we got you covered. Its all about what you want from the game.

Only time will tell if we fully met those goals, but I think the final version is incredibly smooth if you need it to be, but still crunchy for those who want it without impacting everyone at the table.
 

TwoSix

Unserious gamer
Supporter
To be fair, I think the only edition of D&D to get close to balancing fighters and wizards is 4th edition. And we all know how that went. So I think everyone is more than okay with there being vast differences in power level among fighters and casters. (5E doesn't do a significant better job at balance than 3.x/PF did.)
As someone who's pretty crunch oriented and has played a good amount of 3.5/PF, 4e, and 5e, I'd only partly agree. 4e is certainly the most balanced, but 5e has much better balance for casters than 3.5/PF, even if you only do 1 or 2 combats per long rest. Concentration and the relative nerfing of a lot of utility spells sets to that.
 

TwoSix

Unserious gamer
Supporter
This idea that Rogues = Combat class just as good as a warrior is kind of a weird obsession of TTRPGs and specifically D&D in the past few years. Rogues may not stink in combat, but normally the Warrior far exceeds almost any rogue in actual combat.
It isn't really a TTRPG thing, I think it's MMO concepts influencing the archetype. I remember reading a WoW preview back in 2003, where they described Rogues are the ultimate melee damage dealer, and thinking to myself "That's actually really brilliant, and would be great in D&D. Fighters are defensive, and Rogues are offensive." Doing a little digging, it looks Everquest rogues are also dedicated damage dealers, and that would date back to 1999.

Also worth noting that Final Fantasy hasn't had a Thief character as a secondary combatant since Zidane in FFIX. The thief job in FFXI is melee damage oriented, as is the rogue job in FFXIV. Seems like a classic case of archetype shift, much like druids going from nature priests into being identified primarily as shapeshifters.
 

MockingBird

Explorer
It's a pretty fair assumption that mmo's made an impact on the ttrpg rouge and other classes. It was the emphasis on roles really. I dont like it but it is what it is. I look at it like this, if I'm a brand new player and I'm browsing the classes. I'm not going to automatically look at the fighter and think defense, I'm not gonna automatically think damage dealer when I see rouge and so on. "Roles" were really emphasized in 4e and that was a big turn off to me personally.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
To be fair, I think the only edition of D&D to get close to balancing fighters and wizards is 4th edition. And we all know how that went. So I think everyone is more than okay with there being vast differences in power level among fighters and casters. (5E doesn't do a significant better job at balance than 3.x/PF did.)
No, this is only you attempting to relativizing the issue. Nobody is interested in 4E here. I'm not looking for perfect equality, and the choice isn't between boring sameness and unbridled inequality.

It makes me think you maybe don't know of the myriad of changes to spells and spellcasters performed by 5E, that comprehensively ground them compared to 3.x?

Anyway, certainly plenty of d20/Pathfinder fans find it inconceivable that you can rein in spellcasters without losing their soul (like 4E). To return on topic, my fear is that the Paizo PF2 team belongs to that category. Despite 5E clearly proving it can be done.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
5E not perfect but its a lot better than 3.X. Concentration, less spell slots and less powerful spells, no cheap wands and scrolls.

As someone who's pretty crunch oriented and has played a good amount of 3.5/PF, 4e, and 5e, I'd only partly agree. 4e is certainly the most balanced, but 5e has much better balance for casters than 3.5/PF, even if you only do 1 or 2 combats per long rest. Concentration and the relative nerfing of a lot of utility spells sets to that.
Thank you both.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
I remember reading a WoW preview back in 2003, where they described Rogues are the ultimate melee damage dealer, and thinking to myself "That's actually really brilliant, and would be great in D&D. Fighters are defensive, and Rogues are offensive."
If PF2 finally brought that to DnDish games, that'd be excellent yes.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
Asking a squishie to be worse at combat than the sturdy tricked-out fighter just because you can do rote stuff like open locks and disarm traps? And probably with less reliability than the Wizard? Nah, fnuke that. Games have moved on from the trap-filled dungeons of yore: the "pure thief role" simply isn't as interesting any longer. Our games shouldn't ask us to be a Bilbo of fighting (i.e. one that sucks) just to pull off burglary stuff.

Besides: TTRPGs is a group activity. Sitting on our hands waiting for the thief to complete their solo scouting run is boring. Instead it's time to transform the thief character to a group character, allowing abilities that shine in group combat. Sneak attack activated by attacking monsters already engaged in melee is excellent, for example. Sneak attack activated by skulking in shadows only encourages the thief to avoid soaking any damage. Not only does that steal the fighter's thunder (being self-sufficent like that) it also encourages the thief to not be a team player.

I would heartily welcome an expansion of this role: from a loner whose powers doesn't encourage team play, to one appreciated by the team for its awesome DPS, while the team fights to keep said awesome DPS coming.

World of Warcraft had it right. Lower the DPS of fighters (rangers, paladins etc) and upping it for squishies. :)

Of course, in return for that the fighters (and other martials, but especially fighters) will gain battlefield control powers so they don't have to watch helplessly as monsters move past them to take out the damage-dealers first. That's a given and don't need to be mentioned.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
%E squishies deal damge close enough to the warriors, its the -5/+10 feats that are oput of whack not ROgue vs fighter.

Level 11 Fighter, sword and board, duelist 3 attacks 20 strength 1d8+7 X3 (34.5 avg damage)
Level 11 Rogue, 20 dex rapier 1d8+5+6d6 sneak attack 30.5 avg damage
Level 11 Fighter, 2 handed sword etc etc 2d6+5 (36 avg dmaage plus rerolls)

Rogue can use a shortsword in off hand, +3.5 damage marginally lower damage than fighter

Classes are roughly fine (Rogue is also decent level 1-4), its those stupid feats out of whack.
 

Aldarc

Legend
I remember reading a WoW preview back in 2003, where they described Rogues are the ultimate melee damage dealer, and thinking to myself "That's actually really brilliant, and would be great in D&D. Fighters are defensive, and Rogues are offensive."
Much like the WoW Vanilla concept of the "hybrid tax,"* what you describe here died in practice across subsequent updates. Damage in WoW (or other MMOs) was relatively equalized among roles because there was less incentive utilize some classes over others in group content (e.g., dungeons, raids, etc.). However, a DPS rogue and a DPS warrior will have different mechanics for how they distribute and mitigate their damage.

* Hybrid Tax: the (now extinct) guiding principle that the hybrid classes (e.g., then Shaman, Paladin, Druid) should not be able to perform a single role (damage, tanking, healing) as well as other classes who primarily perform a singular role due to their versatility.

No, this is only you attempting to relativizing the issue. CapnZapp is not interested in 4E here. I'm not looking for perfect equality, and the choice isn't between boring sameness and unbridled inequality.
Corrections in bold. ;)

Anyway, certainly plenty of d20/Pathfinder fans find it inconceivable that you can rein in spellcasters without losing their soul (like 4E). To return on topic, my fear is that the Paizo PF2 team belongs to that category. Despite 5E clearly proving it can be done.
Based on what you say here, it seems then that it would be more prudent for Paizo to maintain the soul of what makes Pathfinder "Pathfinder" and those "plenty of d20/Pathfinder fans" rather than cater to what CapnZapp wants when you have the fixes you want in 5E. But if we are posting our fears in this thread, then I will confess that I fear that you don't actually care in the actual updates that Paizo is making in PF2, but, instead, you are here to hear yourself whine while standing on a soapbox. You don't show much awareness or desire to learn for yourself what Paizo is doing in PF2. You seem to be far more concerned with posting about how 5E has solved things (and how you wish PF2 would cater to your design whims) than discussing the actual contours of mechanical changes that PF2 will implement or transpired in the playtest. Though perhaps you could assuage my fears if you showed a genuine interest in discussing PF2 mechanics, including those that have been revealed since the closure of the playtest.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
%E squishies deal damge close enough to the warriors, its the -5/+10 feats that are oput of whack not ROgue vs fighter.

Level 11 Fighter, sword and board, duelist 3 attacks 20 strength 1d8+7 X3 (34.5 avg damage)
Level 11 Rogue, 20 dex rapier 1d8+5+6d6 sneak attack 30.5 avg damage
Level 11 Fighter, 2 handed sword etc etc 2d6+5 (36 avg dmaage plus rerolls)

Rogue can use a shortsword in off hand, +3.5 damage marginally lower damage than fighter

Classes are roughly fine (Rogue is also decent level 1-4), its those stupid feats out of whack.
Not sure what this is supposed to mean. Few prospective Pathfinder customers play 5E without feats.

Whether rogue damage in the options-off game is enough is simply not very relevant. That feats exist that almost double fighter damage without doing much for rogues is. You can't divorce the feats from the system.

Anyway, I was talking about a game model where you need to choose between offense and defense - you can't have both.

No existing DnD game from WotC or Paizo comes even close to this.

I'm not interested in the Rogue having DPS "close enough" to the warriors. I want to explore a game where if you have half the defense you get twice the offense.

To paint you a picture of how far away 5E is, imagine if the -5/+10 feats didn't exist, and sneak damage was tripled (for melee only).

Now we're talking!
 

Zardnaar

Legend
Not sure what this is supposed to mean. Few prospective Pathfinder customers play 5E without feats.

Whether rogue damage in the options-off game is enough is simply not very relevant. That feats exist that almost double fighter damage without doing much for rogues is. You can't divorce the feats from the system.

Anyway, I was talking about a game model where you need to choose between offense and defense - you can't have both.

No existing DnD game from WotC or Paizo comes even close to this.

I'm not interested in the Rogue having DPS "close enough" to the warriors. I want to explore a game where if you have half the defense you get twice the offense.

To paint you a picture of how far away 5E is, imagine if the -5/+10 feats didn't exist, and sneak damage was tripled (for melee only).

Now we're talking!

I use some 3pp feats and one of them brought dex based melee out of the poo box. It basically let you add strength as well when using light weapons. Dex based PC, finds gauntlets of ogre power, dual wields shortswords and is a halfling that rerolled 1's and 2's. Best Halfling Fighter I had seen since 2E and the combo works with Thieves as well. You can divorce feats form the system, no one is forcing you to use the feats, without them the classes are very close the damage is just a few points and at some levels the Rogue wins (3, 9 maybe 7).

Due to dex etc AC difference is 1-3 points. Rogue has out of combat stuff fighter doesn't hence why the fighter deals maybe 10% more damage at certain levels. Rogue deals close to two handed weapon damage dual wielding as well, AC 17 vs 18.

Be very clear its the feats not the classes that are the problem. Play without feats or just ban the -5/+10 feats or replace them with other ones from Xanathars/3PP.
 

zztong

Explorer
Only time will tell if we fully met those goals, but I think the final version is incredibly smooth if you need it to be, but still crunchy for those who want it without impacting everyone at the table.

This gap between the playtest and launch is rather awkward. My understanding is that y'all don't want to talk details about the changes. I'd be curious to know what changes make the final version smooth, if there's anything that can be shown.
 

Retreater

Legend
If PF2 finally brought that to DnDish games, that'd be excellent yes.

This has been a hallmark of 4E since it was released in 2008. Fighters are defenders with high AC and the ability to punish those enemies who ignore them to attack their allies. And rogues are strikers, with low AC and high damage output.

4E was really a situation of throwing the baby out with the bathwater. I think the core of it had a lot of great ideas, but the reactionary mood of gamers kept us from having a 5th edition that was revolutionary and just kept bringing up the same issues we've always had.
 

I remember reading a WoW preview back in 2003, where they described Rogues are the ultimate melee damage dealer, and thinking to myself "That's actually really brilliant, and would be great in D&D. Fighters are defensive, and Rogues are offensive." Doing a little digging, it looks Everquest rogues are also dedicated damage dealers, and that would date back to 1999.
If PF2 finally brought that to DnDish games, that'd be excellent yes.
To be fair, 3.5/PF already did that, to a fair extent - the Rogue's contribution in combat, when he can make one at all, is high, spikey, situational DPR; the Fighter's best contribution, when he can manage it, is blocking a choke-point until the right spell can be cast to end the encounter. 4e continued in that vein and did it better, and balanced the classes into the bargain...

This has been a hallmark of 4E since it was released in 2008. Fighters are defenders with high AC and the ability to punish those enemies who ignore them to attack their allies. And rogues are strikers, with low AC and high damage output.
Yeah, and 4e caught flack for "Being an MMO." While 3.5 caught flack for not doing it well /enough/ especially on the Fighter side ("Fighter SUX!!" "Fighter needs Aggro!").

5e has both the fighter & rogue (& barbarian & almost everyone, really, if they want to) doing solid DPR, and the fighter is tanky enough, so that's not too far off, either - and it catches no flack for it, at all, having threaded the needle between acceptable & accessible.

So, if PF2 wants to go there and make the fighter the Tank and the rogue the DPS, it'll have to thread that needle, too.

It's tough out there for a Game Designer.
 

Retreater

Legend
It's tough out there for a Game Designer.

That's true. I think the only thing to do is to realize there isn't "one perfect game" for all audiences, and that systems need to offer different experiences to cater to their audiences. I'm finding that the more I play, there isn't even "one perfect game" for me - I like switching it up to experience different styles of games.

I think there is currently a void in the tactical RPG market. There are numerous narrative games, rules lite, and ones like 5E that don't really do tactics like 3.x or 4e did. I hope PF2 can fill that void; however, the experience I had in the playtest wasn't positive.
 

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