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  1. - Top - End - #181
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    Default Re: Pathfinder Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Rixx View Post
    But with Pathfinder power attack, you don't have to worry about all that variable bonus nonsense. It's streamlined and it gives you better returns.

    I think the flavor behind Power Attack is that you're putting all your might into the swing, regardless of accuracy - a fighter precisely measuring exactly how much accuracy he wants to give up for damage is a little silly.

    But I've pretty much spent my reasonable arguments in favor of Pathfinder's Power Attack. If I didn't convince you at least a little, I don't think it's going to happen.
    Both versions ought to be feats. It's totally conceivable that a TRAINED warrior who doe snothing but fight can accurately predict how hard he can swing, affter a few test swings at the enemy in question. When I run enemies as a DM, the enemy only starts accurately power attacking for the optimal amount after it has figured out how hard the enemy is to hit.
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  2. - Top - End - #182
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    Default Re: Pathfinder Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Saph View Post
    Well, let's take a wild stab in the dark here . . . maybe the one that DOESN'T assume Shock Trooper? The discussion might be a bit more productive if you compared core Pathfinder to core 3.5, not core Pathfinder to Mr-I-Can-One-Hit-The-Tarrasque.
    PF power attack is superior to 3.5 power attack in a non-shock trooper environment, in a midlevel bracket. In very early levels, power attacking for 1 is more likely, and late game, when bab has outstripped ac, power attacking for more is likely.

    So, it can be situationally better, but the lack of flexibility makes it worse overall, imo.
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  3. - Top - End - #183
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    Default Re: pathfinder good/bad?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tyndmyr View Post
    This is what they advertise, yes, but it doesn't play out in practice. Updating a single monster statblock from 3.x to pathfinder requires, at a minimum, recalculating grapple/trip/etc to the new CMB/etc system, recalculating Bab depending on type, and recalculating skills using the new system. Due to combining skills and the new flight skill, some of this is inherently subjective, and has no automatic portability method. In addition, anything with class levels or feats will have much more widespread compatibility issues.

    Converting from 3.5 to PF is less difficult than converting from 3.5 to 4e, but more difficult than converting from 3.0 to 3.5(which can often be used entirely as is).

    The re-balancing of base classes would best be described as "changed the base classes some", as it mostly consists of throwing more power at everything. This includes classes like wizard, that were already at the top of the power curve, and now have access to all sorts of fun, ridiculously powerful things. Significant changes, yes. Significantly improved balance, not at all.

    Most of the prestige classes received only minimal changes. Some, such as loremaster, received none.
    I hadn't really had much trouble with material compatibility, but I would say it's definitely more work than going from 3.0 to 3.5 (you really can use most 3.0 stuff with little to no modifications).

    It's worth noting that they did improve the power of the classes, except the druid who got nerfed IMO. That being said, I've noticed a lot of spell nerfs, which has an indirect but noticeable effect on the power of spell-casters.

    That being said, yeah, I don't agree with everything they did with Pathfinder. My hat's off to them however for trying to keep the 3E styled system alive. Like I said before, I'd give 'em a try. If you don't like it, you don't have to play it. They have virtually all their important junk on their SRD (www.pfsrd.com).

    In an attempt to not sound like a PF-salesman, I don't like the new flying rules, and I don't like some of the changes. Of course, I don't like all the 3.5 changes either (fighters were better in 3.0 due to feat stacking and effects like improved critical + keen stacking, and I found weapon rules to be far simpler. But who can please everyone all the time, right?).
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  4. - Top - End - #184
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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    Claiming that Pathfinder is backwards compatible with 3.5 contradicts Pathfinder advocates' claims regarding balance (which, at any rate, are disproved by the massive power creep in the Advanced Players' Guide). If Pathfinder just replaces 3.5 core, with the non-core material transferred as is, then nerfing a couple core spells is meaningless because there are better options anyway.

    If you treat Pathfinder as its own system, and compare it to 3.5's core classes, then it's a decent system that's far less broken than core 3.5. I'd probably pick core 3.0 with some skill streamlining over either, but that's just my preference.
    Last edited by imperialspectre; 2010-02-06 at 02:05 AM.

  5. - Top - End - #185
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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    A note on the paladin code: It now allows you to associate with evil characters in order to pursue a greater good. Sure, it says you should seek an atonement spell once in awhile when doing so, but by RAW you can do it now. I think this is a great improvement. Meanwhile, violating the code of conduct is still as subjective as ever, and will depend entirely on your GM, just like in 3.5. Yeah, they changed the wording, but most GMs are either heavy handed about it or they aren't, and that's what is really going to matter in practice. I'm honestly surprised no one has mentioned the ability to associate with evil characters for a greater good though.

    Here's the relevant bit from the prd:
    "Associates: While she may adventure with good or neutral allies, a paladin avoids working with evil characters or with anyone who consistently offends her moral code. Under exceptional circumstances, a paladin can ally with evil associates, but only to defeat what she believes to be a greater evil. A paladin should seek an atonement spell periodically during such an unusual alliance, and should end the alliance immediately should she feel it is doing more harm than good. A paladin may accept only henchmen, followers, or cohorts who are lawful good."

    Still incredibly subjective, but it allows by RAW what many DMs (myself included) allowed by fiat for the sake of a good story and letting everyone have fun. Also, I love the idea of a paladin going into his order to seek an atonement and justifying his actions to another member of the order. Makes for good political roleplaying. And if that's not your group's thing, just get the spell and run or skip it altogether.



    As for game balance issues, I think Pathfinder comes out ahead on balance. The fighter finally has a real set of abilities that only it can get, just like every other core class does. Most spellcasters got better class features (with the druid a notable exception), but spells themselves have been nerfed. I win buttons are still there, but they're harder to dig up, and many allow multiple saves now or have weaker effects.

    Take solid fog as one example: 3.5 dropped the movement of people inside to 5 ft. That made an amazing debuff for anyone that didn't have freedom of movement. In Pathfinder, it halves movement rate. Still a good spell, but not quite so broken.

    The best save or die spells, such as finger of death, wail of the banshee, and implosion have been changed to do massive amounts of hp damage instead. Others have been changed to fit this mold as well. Phantasmal killer and weird remain instant death spells, but they allow two saves, and mind blank and similar effects completely nullify them, so I think that works out all right. Nerfs to glitterdust, alter self, and polymorph have already been mentioned.

    There are, of course, other nerfs throughout, but it would be hard to talk about all of them. However, the point is that with so many spell nerfs to many favorites that are abused by those who know the rules well, I think it's fair to say that casters have been nerfed.

    That said, there are some cases where spells did get better. Any spell with an xp cost no longer has it. It has instead been converted to a gp cost at the standard rate of 1 xp = 5 gp. I think these spells are much better now that xp doesn't need to be given up to cast them. However, a high gp cost will still keep them from being used too often. Still, the ability to use these spells with more impunity than before is still a buff. I think the nerfs to more commonly used spells still makes it an overall nerf for casters, but they are still the most powerful classes in the game.

    However, you won't see a cleric outshining the fighter in melee in anymore. Fighters can wear the best armor in the game and get their dex to AC, they can use their feats to get way more options in combat than they could in 3.5, and if you go for a crit build, you'll be piling status effects on the enemies you face. You know, save or sucks. For the fighter. While he's still doing lots of damage. Other melee classes can go this route too, though not as well as the fighter can do it, since they have they're own class features.

    I think monks are also an interesting case, in that improved unarmed strike has a new feat chain that allows status effects that build on the last one initiated. Scorpion style is a great speed debuff, gorgon's fist can stagger anyone who has been hit by a speed debuff (such as scorpion style or slow), and medusa's wrath then gives you extra attacks at your opponent when they are staggered (or affected by a slew of other effects) when you make a full attack with an unarmed strike. The fact that these feats build on each other makes them harder to use solo, but it can be done, and also gives the monk access to some nice debuffs. Not as good as the casters get, but still nice. Also extra damage when the monk finishes the chain. And they still have stunning fist. Still probably subpar, but the status effects help a bit, and the ki pool mentioned earlier to allow abilities to be used more often is also a nice power boost that is badly needed.

    This isn't a complete overview, obviously, but I think I hit some highlights. In short, I still think full-casters are the best, but with some nerfs to the bread and butter spells they use and some new options for melee classes, the gap has closed a bit.



    Edit: A note on backwards compatibility. When it comes to monsters, I wouldn't even bother converting them. If Pathfinder has an updated version, I'd use that. Otherwise, I'd just use the 3.5 version as is, and ad hoc any necessary changes. Necessary means things like picking the closest skill for those that don't exist anymore, not adjusting things like BAB or adding more feats. To compensate for the hit to effectiveness, maybe a -1 to CR for any creatures pulled from 3.5. Quick, dirty, and not perfect, but it gets the job done and gets you to playing with no fuss.

    For splatbook classes, just modify the ones your players want to use that you approve for use. Only has to be done once, at character creation, and you're good to go.

    So I don't see backwards compatibility as a problem at all. It's only an issue if you insist on going into meticulous detail about it.
    Last edited by Eclipse; 2010-03-09 at 01:56 PM.

  6. - Top - End - #186
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    DruidGuy

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    Default Re: And here's the only bit I know half of you are going to read.

    Quote Originally Posted by Saph View Post
    Nerfed - The only class which has unarguably gotten worse. Yeah, you saw this coming.

    • Druid
    i play pathfinder it batter then you thank much batter then 3.5. i also played Druids in 3.5 and i hated them i tryed playing one in pathfinder i love it. play one you will change your mind.

  7. - Top - End - #187
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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    to be fair, druid did get A LOT of stuff.
    like everything.

    I like how wild shape is at will as the capstone though

  8. - Top - End - #188
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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    I like this handbook but I think it's worth mentioning in there that Pathfinder won't always stay the way it is right now and there have already been some additions to its library (most notably the Advanced Player's Guide bringing a bunch of new classes and prestige classes as well as an abundance of core class variants, alternative racial features and more feats). And generally it should be said that the books released by paizo are quality over quantity. Instead of having lot's of little books they take their time to make meaningful additions and showering players and gms with new goodies in every new book.
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  9. - Top - End - #189
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    Default Re: And here's the only bit I know half of you are going to read.

    Quote Originally Posted by nealpb View Post
    i play pathfinder it batter then you thank much batter then 3.5. i also played Druids in 3.5 and i hated them i tryed playing one in pathfinder i love it. play one you will change your mind.
    I don't think Saph was trying to imply that the druid being nerfed was a bad thing. On the contary, the nerf was badly needed. I recently played a druid, limited myself heavily on the wildshaping (to a fire elemental in a devil heavy campaign) and traded the animal companion for the (in my opinion) weaker domain option and the chaarcter was still very, very powerful.

    The nerf was needed, and it's conicdently one of the few things I actually like about PF.

  10. - Top - End - #190
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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    Quote Originally Posted by Threeshades View Post
    I like this handbook but I think it's worth mentioning in there that Pathfinder won't always stay the way it is right now and there have already been some additions to its library (most notably the Advanced Player's Guide bringing a bunch of new classes and prestige classes as well as an abundance of core class variants, alternative racial features and more feats).
    Yep, there are quite a few new classes now. Unfortunately I haven't seen most of them in action yet so it's harder for me to give a verdict on them.

    Still, there are a few things I could do to improve the handbook - in particular, I've gotten to know the PF feats pretty well by now. Just need to find the time!
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  11. - Top - End - #191
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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    I haven't read all of this, but that part about fighters not having much variety is fixed in the Pathfinder advanced player's guide. There are class archetypes in it, each is geared to a theme, with alternate class features, as you've probably guessed, the fighters archetypes are geared towards weapon styles.

  12. - Top - End - #192
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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    Obviously, everyone is going to have their own opinions, but I like Pathfinder, for a couple reasons:

    First, a lot of the changes, including but not limited to the new Power Attack, and Combat Maneuvers, streamline the game and make combat quicker. Because my group is rather large (we typically have between 7 and 9 players), this helps IMMENSELY in keeping battle moving. When we made the switch, average battle time went down from an hour to about 30 minutes (depending on the battle's scale), because the Power Attack happy barbarian didn't have to do so much math in his head, and because the monk didn't have to make 2 or 3 or more rolls for every combat maneuver (which she liked using a lot).

    Second, the variability of the base classes. This was something my players and I really took issue with in regular 3.5 (and especially 4e), which prompted us to search elsewhere for a spell: unless you were a fighter or an arcanist, all members of your class were pretty much the same. Now, with all the options available to every class, we can specialize our characters much more into what we think they should be like, and get mechanical bonuses from that. Our rogue who built as a trickster-type? He got some magical talents. Our ranger who specialized in jungle environments? Now is actually better at ranger-ing in a jungle.
    This also means you don't need as many of the alternate base classes from splat-books. With all the customization, you can play a swashbuckler, a scout, or a typical rogue, all using the rogue class as is (and the Advanced Players Guide helped with this even more).

    Third, I liked a lot of the minor system changes: skills, feats, infinite cantrips, changes to some spells, favored classes, improved races, and some others.

    Also, many of the changes easily lend themselves to greater fluff, even if they're just mechanics. As an example, in the current game I'm running, there's a magocratic kingdom where the Arcane sorcerer bloodline is prominent. Only nobles have it (supposedly), and any other arcanists must be wizards that are registered.

    As a side note, in the discussion of monks and fighters, I can't believe no one has metioned the Vital Strike feats yet. Essentially, you do double your damage dice (or triple, or quadruple, depending on how many feats in the chain you've taken) as a standard action. Which means you can move and still do a lot more damage. Because Strength isn't multiplied, perhaps its not as powerful as a full attack, but it's a significant damage increase on those turns in which you have to move anyway. Especially for a monk, who has high damage dice and amazing movement, this can be an incredible boon.

    *Please note, opinions found inside, from a gaming group that considers roleplaying,story, and customization secondary to build optimization*
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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    This is a great thead, thanks Saph.

    Anyone have any more ideas on the new classes- Inquisitor, etc?

  14. - Top - End - #194
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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    I feel funny being on the end left behind from 4th edition.

    My personal problems with it were-
    -Characters of a particular class were almost identical to any other who picked the same build (out of 2 options).
    -Healing surges were odd. I didn't feel that a basic character should be able to heal without rest or magic.
    "Did that guy just impale you with a sword?"
    "I got better. All I needed to do was take a breather."
    -Character classes felt similar, and there weren't enough legos to build distinct characters that I liked.
    -Skillpoint simplification felt like a major blow to my ability to determine who my character was.
    -Feats felt incidental. They also didn't help much with identity.
    -The whole thing felt like a design document for an MMORPG.

    But at the same time I felt stupid to let myself be left behind. I felt like some dude who just couldn't handle new stuff. Calling out 'They changed it now it sucks.'

    Pathfinder feels like a vindication for me. 'Yeah a lot of other people agreed with you. They agreed so hard that they released a D&D 3.75 that was financially viable.' IDK when it comes down to it I like most of the pathfinder changes. I don't like the fighter loosing his charger build though. I guess it can be house-ruled away. Meh. For the most part the changes to the actual game or so minor that I'd be pretty happy with 3.5 or pathfinder either way.

  15. - Top - End - #195
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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    I don't find Channel Energy a nerf to clerics. At first, I did think it was, but now having experiencing it in play, I see it as a buff.

    1) You can use it in any combat, always able to use a class feature. In 3E, if there's no undead in combat, you can't use a class feature.

    2) You can use it out of combat for some extra healing that does not use up spell slots for Cure Wounds and allows for conservation of healing potions and wand charges.

    3) You can heal multiple people at the same time at a range. That is more efficient than all healing spells except Mass Heal, potions, and wands. By the time you can cast the Mass Cure spells, your Channel Energy heals comparable damage, and you'd rather be casting other spells of those levels anyway.

    4) Healing in combat is a little bit more effective. It does depend on the situation, of course, but its ability to heal more than one party member makes all the difference. Keeping two party member conscious for even one more round allows two rounds of actions combined your party can do.

    5) Selective Channeling it worth the feat. You could consider this a feat tax, but perhaps it's necessary to prevent regular Channel Energy from being too good. Call this a matter of personal opinion.

    6) Pathfinder Turn Undead feat is better than 3E's Turn Undead class feature. If you know the campaign will not have enough undead to warrant turning, there's no need to take the feat. If you do take the feat, it works on all undead, regardless of HD. There is a save, analogous to 3E's turning check, but the feat works on all undead, period. The more powerful undead with channeling resistance are harder to affect, as is appropriate, but they can still be affected. More significantly, the high HD undead mooks are no longer autoimmune whatever the cleric's level. They get turned just as relatively easy as regular HD undead.

    7) Channeling Negative Energy with Selective Channeling feat isn't so bad for Neutral Clerics. It's not I Win The Combat, but it damages all enemies in the area, helping with damage attrition against the non-undead bad guys. It's a decent enough attack to conserve your spells and not need to be in melee as often. It's a good option if you're not wanting to concentrate on healing.

  16. - Top - End - #196
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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    Quote Originally Posted by DrDeth View Post
    This is a great thead, thanks Saph.

    Anyone have any more ideas on the new classes- Inquisitor, etc?
    Most of these have handbooks out that cover their tier and capabilities. Mine, though lacking in updates, covers the psionic classes (as I await Psionics Expanded's completion for a larger overhaul.) Overall though, i'd say the Inquisitor works nicely as an updated "divine bard", Magus is great as a gish-in-a-can, and both Ninja and Gunslinger have questionable design choices.
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    First, please don't start threads with ideas you don't support just to see what reactions you get. That's almost the definition of trolling.

    Second, the whole "blue text" thing is not a forum rule or even a recommended procedure. If someone wants to do it in their own posts, fine, but everyone should stop telling people that they "need to" or "should have" posted in blue just because they're being sarcastic/ironic/whatever.

  17. - Top - End - #197
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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    Let me just say something: Inquisitor is far different than a "divine bard."

    Yes, they get 3/4 BAB and up to 6th level spells, but that's pretty much where the similarities end. While bards focusing on improving other party members and debilitating enemies, inquisitors focus on making themselves engines of pure destruction. The sheer amount of damage output they have when using their judgement and bane puts bards to shame and even gives fighters a run for their money. They also get plenty of other things (Monster Lore, Wisdom to initiative, discern lies, discern alignment, etc.) they can do which add up to a class very different than a divine flavored bard.

    That being said, I don't like them. Their judgement growth is far too exponential for my tastes, and seem far too different (in terms of power) late game and early game.
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  18. - Top - End - #198
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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    Quote Originally Posted by navar100 View Post
    1) You can use it in any combat, always able to use a class feature. In 3E, if there's no undead in combat, you can't use a class feature.
    Wait. People used Turn Undead to turn undead?

  19. - Top - End - #199
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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    Quote Originally Posted by Swiftmongoose View Post
    Wait. People used Turn Undead to turn undead?
    Neutral and evil Clerics did/can . Unlike Turning, rebuking always makes the undead either cower (do nothing while you beat them senseless) or be controlled.
    Seriously, Turning makes the run away (this means you have to fight then again) or cower till hit. Unless they are weak undead and are destroyed.

  20. - Top - End - #200
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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    Quote Originally Posted by Starbuck_II View Post
    Neutral and evil Clerics did/can . Unlike Turning, rebuking always makes the undead either cower (do nothing while you beat them senseless) or be controlled.
    Seriously, Turning makes the run away (this means you have to fight then again) or cower till hit. Unless they are weak undead and are destroyed.
    You failed your Sense Sarcasm check.

  21. - Top - End - #201
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    PaladinGuy

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    Default Re: The 3.5/Pathfinder Handbook

    Quote Originally Posted by Anarchy_Kanya View Post
    You failed your Sense Sarcasm check.
    No he didn't. The poster asks sarcastically "people use turn undead to turn undead?" in reference to the far more powerful divine feats.

    Following post states that actually for evil clerics, turn undead was used for that purpose.

    Look everyone this image is a link!

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