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I know that as per RAW you can stack multiple archetype as long they dont conflict when changing the same class feature.

But would it be too game breaking to treat 2 non-stacking archetypes as different classes?

I mean, the game allows a 10 barbarian (titan mauler) 10 fighter (Two-Handed Fighter) to exist, but not a 10 fighter (titan fighter) 10 fighter (Two-Handed Fighter).

As far I understand, the idea of no stacking is to prevent receiving x features at the cost of x/2.

So treating to non-stacking archetypes as differents this problem would be resolved no?


And just to point it out, I know that some archetypes are fundamentally opposed, for example a 2-handed fighter and a tower shield specialist.

But ignoring this cases, would it be possible?

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    \$\begingroup\$ How would you handle class features that aren't lost to either archetype? As the higher of the two class levels or "stacking"? For example, suppose a Fighter wants to take Blackjack archetype on one "class" and Defender on the other. Neither replaces or alters Weapon Training. What level of Weapon Training do they benefit from? \$\endgroup\$ – Ifusaso Nov 6 at 18:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ @KRyan Copy that. I've removed it. \$\endgroup\$ – JRodge01 Nov 6 at 18:24
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Ifusaso well, this is the kind of thing that I'm curious about. What will break, or more specifically, what will break seriously. In this case specifically, I dont see why not stack weapon training, so a 5 Blackjack/ 5 Defender would have "Weapon Training 2". For instance Rogue and Barbarian's uncanny dodge stack, so if a class feature stack, I Dont see why not keep it. Some class features dont stack, as they dont have any kind of progression as Druid's Woodland stride. But in general I'm not able to think of any case that would simply break the game. \$\endgroup\$ – Eldhelion Nov 6 at 19:32
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Eldhelion Actually, most class features don't stack, unless they explicitly say so (ie Sneak Attack from Rogue/Assassin/et al). So a Blackjack 5/Defender 5 would have Weapon Training 1 unless you specify otherwise in your homerule \$\endgroup\$ – Ifusaso Nov 6 at 23:24
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    \$\begingroup\$ Be aware that there also exists this extremely similar question. \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Nov 7 at 4:12
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The answer to this is, I think, “no one really knows.” When we discuss balance, especially when we discuss broad, systemic things like this, the approach to answering these questions is to leverage the expertise of a wide consensus of players, who have tried tons and tons of things and have come up with either “haven’t found anything broken yet” or “yup, XYZ totally breaks things.”

The problem here is that this is not a widely-used or widely-considered houserule. Paizo certainly doesn’t keep it in consideration when they design things, and you’ll find few—if any—discussions online of play under such a houserule. Without a big, broad base of testing and experiences, we simply can’t know the answer. Even if I had played in such a game—and I have not—it wouldn’t necessarily prove anything. If nothing was broken, is it because the houserule is fine—or because we just got lucky and missed the problems? If something was broken, does that mean the rule is unsalvageable—or does it mean that one thing needs to be addressed because it breaks, but generally the rule is OK? We just don’t know.

So if you are considering such a campaign, know that it’s necessarily going to be experimental. If you are the GM, you are going to have to do more work considering and vetting player characters than you otherwise would. If you are a player, you are going to have to expect more ad hoc rulings from the GM, possibly even including a ret-con to your character to eliminate a combination that proves broken. I have played in and run plenty of experimental games, and for me, at least, that’s fine. I haven’t tried this particular thing but if I had players who wanted to, or if a GM I knew and trusted was suggesting it, I’d be fine with giving it a shot. It might well be broken, but maybe only a few specific combinations are that we can ban or houserule or just come to a gentlefolk’s agreement about, and play can proceed. I am comfortable and confident enough in my judgment and the judgment of GMs I play under to do that.

But it can be a tall order for a GM who has less system mastery, or for players who find it a struggle to create and recreate characters under shifting rules and expectations. I definitely wouldn’t suggest it to a new GM or for a game with new players.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ "The problem here is that this is not a widely-used or widely-considered houserule. " Sure, this is not a general problem that one have to think about. But since here, is one os such places to pull the colective experience/knowledge from the community, hence my question. I imagine that every GM/Player with more than 2 tables on their belt had a some point stumbled into a char idea/concept that is a outline to the rules as writen and were solved by looking at not equal but close enough rules for guidance. \$\endgroup\$ – Eldhelion Nov 6 at 19:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Eldhelion There are 40 classes in this game, and who-knows-how-many archetypes. The number of combinations are staggering. No one person is going to be able to analyze the situation and come to a sound, solid answer. I mean, you don’t have to take my word for it, feel free to wait and see if anyone proves me wrong, but I really doubt it. \$\endgroup\$ – KRyan Nov 6 at 20:28
  • \$\begingroup\$ I don't expect someone to analyze all possible cases and combination to say concretely if this is a good or bad idea. But there is plenty of chars builds that follow all the written rules and are way to OP when compared to average created ones, and they are allowed, no GM can look at a level 1 char and KNOW that by level 16 it will be OP, given the choices of class/feat the player took along the way. \$\endgroup\$ – Eldhelion Nov 6 at 21:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ But at core of it, what`s so special about a archetype that make if different from a new class. Can someone that had homebrewed a class, to materialize a concept that was an outlier answer form experience, if they feel that this is on average comparable to normal multiclass, or stronger than normal multiclass? \$\endgroup\$ – Eldhelion Nov 6 at 21:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Eldhelion I have no idea what might be possible if you allow multiclassing within one class. In point of fact, how that would even work isn’t clear, as Ifusaso’s comment on your question is getting at. So I don’t know what the rules would be, and I don’t know what the results of those rules would be—and neither does anyone else, because no one’s been trying this. We’d all just be guessing, and this isn’t the place for that. \$\endgroup\$ – KRyan Nov 6 at 22:05

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