A while back, we released the new bonus system for Pathfinder to allow feats, traits and races to add various bonuses automatically. This week, we release a major upgrade to the bonuses in preparation of full support for magic items which we expect to finish next week.
When we discussed bonuses previously, we made the interesting observation that ability scores and ability checks had to be handled separately. This change has been completed and the game now supports both bonuses to ability scores and bonuses to ability checks, which clears the way for items such as Gauntlets of Ogre Power and Headbands of Intellect to be added.
Additionally, we have made it possible to apply bonuses to Armour or Weapon enhancements or special materials, such as the bonus to Stealth granted by Shadow Armour or the bonus to Armour Class by Parrying weapons (from the Complete Psionics). We’ve added the bonuses from the book to all existing campaigns to save you the trouble of having to adjust everything manually. Likewise, bonuses can now be applied to regular items, such as those granted by a Climbers Kit.
With that, we are essentially ready for rings, rods, staves and wondrous items, the final categories still missing, and work is well underway to finish these, though we didn’t quite manage before this Friday’s release.
Besides magic items, we have adjusted the way Armour Check Penalties, Maximum Dexterity and Arcane Spell Failure are stored on the sheet. Previously, the sheet did list these values separately, but all data was extracted directly from the equipment. This meant, among other things, that characters had to adjust their equipment if they were due bonuses to these armour values.
One of the most egregious cases were Fighters, who get a bonus to each for Armour Training, effectively requiring them to custom fill their armour instead of using the automatic features the sheet supports. Clearly that wasn’t desirable.
To resolve this impractical situation, you can now add bonuses (or penalties) to Armour Check Penalties, Maximum Dexterity and Arcane Spell Failure directly, either manually or by means of a bonus from feats and such. This not only allows Fighters to have their bonuses but also provides support for feats like Arcane Armor Training which can provide an automatic bonus to Arcane Spell Failure.
All in all, these new features should offer some much desirable quality of life improvements, especially once magic items are fully released in the near future.