Druid Class Preview

Monday, July 23, 2018

Druids are practitioners of primal magic, which blends vital essence (the essence of life, instinct, and faith) with material essence (the essence of matter and the natural world). Thus, primal traditions are rooted in an instinctual connection with and faith in the surrounding world: the cycle of day and night, the turning of the seasons, and the natural selection of predator and prey. Druids are the iconic primal spellcasters; they call upon the power of nature for magic through their deep faith, as opposed to primal sorcerers, who harness the power of fey or other natural creatures that flows through their blood to access the same sorts of primal energies.

Since this is the last class, before we go deeper into the druid's mechanics, I want to show you some extra pieces each class has that you might not know about. Every class entry starts with some bullet points to help you get a feel for what playing the class might be like.

Playing a Druid

Players of druid characters might approach gameplay in the following ways:

  • During combat, you call upon the forces of nature to defeat your enemies and protect your allies. You can cast spells drawing upon primal magic to summon deadly animals to fight at your side, grant resilience to you and your friends, or heal their wounds. Depending on your bond to nature, you might also call upon powerful elemental magic or even change shape into a terrifying beast to fight with tooth and claw.
  • During social encounters, you represent balance and a reasoned approach to problems, looking for solutions that not only are best for the natural world, but also allow the creatures within it to live in harmony and peace. You often propose compromises that allow both sides to gain what they truly need, even if they can't have all that they desire.
  • In exploration mode, your skills in nature are invaluable. You can track down enemies, navigate through the wilderness, or use your spells to detect any magical auras around you. You might even ask wild animals to assist your group in your travels with their extraordinary senses and scouting abilities.
  • In downtime mode, you might craft magic items or potions. Alternatively, your tie to nature might lead you to tend to an area of the wild, befriending its beasts and healing the wounds caused by civilization. You might even attempt to teach people sustainable techniques that allow them to subsist off the land without harming the natural balance.

Roleplaying a Druid

Druids are the living embodiment of nature, acting as its agent; you protect the wild places from harm and speak for their interests in more civilized lands.

If You're a Druid, You Likely...

  • Have a deep and meaningful respect for the power of nature.
  • Are in constant awe of the natural world, eager to share it with others but cautious of their influence.
  • Treat plants and animals as allies in your quest, working with them toward your goals.

Others Probably...

  • View you as a representative of nature, and might even assume you can control it.
  • Assume you're a recluse who avoids society and cities, preferring to live in the wild.
  • Treat you as a mystic, similar to a priest, but answering only to the forces of nature.

Illustration by Wayne Reynolds

Spellcasting

Druids are full prepared spellcasters, able to cast the same number of spells per day as the cleric and bard, rather than gaining extra spells through bloodlines or schools as the sorcerer and wizard do. However, just as the cleric has channel energy and the bard has compositions, the druid has more than enough tricks up her sleeve to make her a primal powerhouse. And figuring those out starts with...

Orders

As the druid's initial architect, Jason pulled the concept of orders from the sidelines of lore directly into the spotlight, making your choice of order a major part of your druid. As with the bard's muse, you can choose abilities that belong to another order, but unlike for the bard, you gain extra benefits from feats and abilities that belong to your own order, incentivizing you to check out your own order's feats first. An order member gains a new skill and an order power that druids of other orders can't gain, and each order adds its own component to the basic druid anathema forbidding actions like despoiling nature. The four orders presented in the playtest are animal, leaf, storm, and wild, though more orders are all but certain to arise.

Animal

An animal druid (known by names like druid of the claw or druid of the wing depending on her preferred animal) has a strong connection to animals. She is trained in Athletics, which is a signature skill for her. She also gains the heal animal order power (exclusive to that members of order) and the Animal Companion feat. Committing wanton cruelty to animals or killing them unnecessarily is anathema to her. (This doesn't prevent her from defending herself against animals or killing them cleanly for food.)

This is the order that's all about having the coolest animal companion. Other druids can easily get an animal companion (and they're a solid choice for all druids) and take the same upgrade feats, but with each feat, the animal order druid will get something cool or extra for the animal. As an example, an animal druid's companion can have multiple specializations, which are like animal companion archetypes, if the animal druid commits more to this path.

Leaf

A druid of the leaf reveres plants and the bounty of nature, acting as a caretaker and warden for the wilderness, teaching sustainable techniques, and helping areas regrow after disasters or negligent humanoid expansion. She is trained in Diplomacy, which is a signature skill for her. She also gains the Leshy Familiar druid feat and the goodberry order power (exclusive to that members of order). Committing wanton cruelty to plants or killing plants unnecessarily is anathema to her. (This doesn't prevent her from defending herself against plants or harvesting them if necessary for survival.)

This style of druid is all about plants, with options including Verdant Metamorphosis, where you flat-out become a plant, and the druid of the leaf's leshy familiar, which has more powers than a typical familiar. Let's check out Verdant Metamorphosis to see a special benefit only druids of the leaf receive:

Verdant Metamorphosis Feat 18

Druid

Leaf Order

You transform into a plant version of yourself. You gain the plant trait and lose any trait that's inappropriate for your new form (typically humanoid). You can change from a form that looks mostly like your old self into a tree or any other non-creature plant as an action (this action has the concentrate trait). Perception checks don't reveal your true form, but a creature can attempt a Nature or Survival check against your class DC to determine that the plant is new to the surrounding area. While in this form, you can observe everything around you, but you can't act other than to spend an action (this action has the concentrate trait) to change back, which ends your turn. In this form, your AC is 30, your TAC is 20, only conditional bonuses, conditional penalties, and circumstance bonuses and penalties can affect you, and you treat all successes and critical successes on Reflex saves as failures.

Special If you are a druid of the leaf order, if you transform into a non-creature plant and take your daily rest during daylight hours, the rest restores you to maximum Hit Points and removes all non-permanent drained, enfeebled, sluggish, and stupefied conditions.

Storm

A druid of the storm carries nature's fury within her, channeling it to terrifying effect and riding the winds and storms. She is trained in Acrobatics, which is a signature skill for her. She also gains the Storm Born druid feat and the tempest surge order power (exclusive to that members of order). Creating unnatural weather patterns that could be damaging to the local environment (such as by using a 9th-level control weather ritual) is anathema to her.

In addition to healing magic, the primal list contains powerful energy blasts, including fireball and other spells newly available to druids. Armed with this magic, druids of the storm are elemental dynamos who focus on the power of the tempest, flying around in storms and ignoring penalties from weather. Notably, their tempest surge order power is an extremely good blast for a 1 Spell Point power, particularly after if they take a feat that ups the d10s to d12s. Let's take a look, since you'll be slinging it around a bunch of times each day.

Tempest Surge Power 1

Air

Electricity

Evocation

Casting [[A]] Somatic Casting, [[A]] Verbal Casting

Range 30 feet; Targets one creature


You surround a foe in a swirling storm of violent winds, roiling clouds, and crackling lightning. The storm deals 1d10 electricity damage to the target, depending on their Reflex saving throw.

Success Half damage.

Critical Success No damage.

Failure Full damage, and the target is sluggish 1 for 1 round.

Critical Failure Double damage, and the target is sluggish 2 for 1 round.

Heightened (+1) The damage increases by 1d10.

After increasing the damage to d12s, the damage scales at the same rate as lightning bolt. But it doesn't just deal damage! The sluggish condition penalizes AC, attack rolls, and Reflex saves, so taking double damage on the critical failure is just the beginning of the horrible pain. When we were playtesting, every creature that critically failed against tempest surge was in for a very bad round.

Wild

The savage, uncontrollable call of the natural world infuses a druid of the wild, granting her the ability to change her shape into the ferocious form of a wild creature. She is trained in Intimidation, which becomes a signature skill for her. She also gains the Wild Shape druid feat and the wild claws order power (exclusive to that members of order). Becoming fully domesticated by the temptations of civilization is anathema to her. (This doesn't prevent her from buying and using processed goods or staying in a city for an adventure, but she can never come to rely on these conveniences or truly call such a place her permanent home.)

Notice the wild order druid starts with Wild Shape? Any druid with Wild Shape feats gets a free extra casting of certain polymorph spells, heightened to her highest possible level, eventually rising up to two free castings if the druid takes enough Wild Shape feats. But the thing that makes a wild order druid particularly different is that, in addition to these, she gains a number of additional bonus castings of these spells equal to her Strength modifier (if it's more than 1). That means a druid of the wild tends towards higher Strength than a typical member of other orders.

Druid Features

Aside from an order, you gain spellcasting and primal spell proficiency at the same levels as all the other spellcasters, new spell levels at every odd level save 19th, expert proficiency in primal spells at 12th level, master proficiency at 16th level, and legendary proficiency at 19th level. You also get the secret Druidic language (don't teach it to nondruids—that's anathema!) and wild empathy, which lets you use Diplomacy to Make a Request of animals, and possibly of plants if you're a leaf order aficionado.

Druid Feats

I covered many feats that connect to orders, but many feats aren't affiliated, like this powerhouse:

[[F]] Leyline Conduit Feat 20

Druid

Metamagic

Frequency once per minute

Trigger You start to cast a spell of 5th level or lower that has no duration and a maximum of 2 spellcasting actions.


You add a Somatic Casting action to the casting of the triggering spell, and you don't expend the prepared spell as you cast it.

This means every minute, you can cast a 5th level or lower spell without expending it. That's really useful! There are some interesting effects of how Jason designed this feat, though, that make it more than just a simple repetition, particularly the fact that you can use Leyline Conduit only if you were already able to cast the spell, meaning you had to prepare it and then avoid using it up by casting it without Leyline Conduit. So the feat gives you somewhat limitless uses of the spell, but if you really need to cast it again before the minute is up, while Leyline Conduit is unavailable, you'll expend the spell for real (at least for the rest of the day).

Animal Companions

Before I go, let's talk about animal companions. While Jason was deep in preliminary design of the druid, he bestowed upon me a strange primal chart of flowing options, almost in Druidic itself, and explained it to me. This chart combined all the best aspects of the 4th- and 7th-level animal companion advancements with animal companion archetypes and new unique features for each different animal, all while moving away from having to make tons of basic feat selections for the companion. What I built from that chart was the first draft of the animal companion system in the playtest. Let's show off the companion most often overlooked in Pathfinder First Edition, the noble bear. The bear has generated a plethora of threads dedicated to how neglected it is, so let's see how the playtest handles it.

Bear

Your companion is a grizzly, panda, polar bear, or other type of bear.

Size Small

[[A]] UnarmedStrikes jaws, Damage 1d8 piercing;

claw (agile), Damage 1d6 slashing

Abilities Str, Con

Hit Points 8

Skill Intimidation

Senses scent

Speed 35 feet

Work Together Benefit Your bear mauls your enemies when you create an opening. Until your next turn, all your weapon Strikes against a creature your bear threatens deal 1d8 additional slashing damage. If your bear has a specialization, the additional slashing damage increases to 2d8.

Advanced Maneuver Bear Hug

[[A]]Bear Hug

Requirements Your last action was a successful claw Strike.


Make another claw Strike against the same target. If your Strike hits, the target is also grabbed, as if you had succeeded at the Grapple action.

The bear starts out Small. Don't worry—when it grows up, it can eventually become a Large bear (in the first book, too; there's no need to wait). The bear's boost in Strength and d8 damage die for its jaws make it the most directly damaging companion, tied with the snake, which it edges out in terms of Constitution, Hit Points, and land Speed. (The snake, for its part, has better AC and lots of special Speeds.) The Work Together benefit is something you can have the bear do instead of attack, and it again deals the most direct damage, adding 1d8 (later 2d8) to the damage of your weapon Strikes. The bear is a great companion for someone who plans, much like the bear itself, to wade into the thick of the fight. Finally, the bear can eventually learn the Bear Hug advanced maneuver. This maneuver essentially means that if the bear hits twice in a row, it gets a free automatic grapple. Handy for keeping foes in place!

So that about wraps up the druid. If you were a druid, which of the four orders would you be?

Mark Seifter
Designer

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Druids Lini Pathfinder Playtest Wayne Reynolds
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Nice stuff.


Smurfst!

Edit: Bah, missed it!


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I have never been so early. I don't know what to do


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I wonder what level "1/SPAN>" is for tempest surge :P


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Does the animal companion use your actions or does it have its own?

Silver Crusade

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Bearo Breakbone, a handsome and beautiful beartori monk, grapple.

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I like the different orders. There are a few ways to build a druid and Orders, like the bard's Muses, give characters a direction from level 1. Often in PF1, it took several levels before build difference would become apparent.


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Hmmm.... Still not sure how I feel about everything becoming Spells. I want Domain Powers, Bloodline Abilities, and whatnot, to actually be unique rather than just an Uncommon spell or something.

And it seems to me that Leyline Conduit will be the new Wand of CLW.


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Kerobelis wrote:
Does the animal companion use your actions or does it have its own?

I think it was mentioned elsewhere that it takes 1 action from the PC to give the Animal Companion 2 Actions. I might be wrong though.

This all looks.....ok. Nothing that makes me go wow or boo. I don't particularly care for the Orders dictating access to stuff like goodberry or heal animal, but whatever.

Also, isn't 8 HP kinda low for a Bear? Do they add something to that? Also what's their AC and stuff? Or is that referenced in a general Animal Companion Table?


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Dαedαlus wrote:

Hmmm.... Still not sure how I feel about everything becoming Spells. I want Domain Powers, Bloodline Abilities, and whatnot, to actually be unique rather than just an Uncommon spell or something.

And it seems to me that Leyline Conduit will be the new Wand of CLW.

Since you can only get it at level 20, I don't see a problem.


I'm curious about the anathema for storm druids. What constitutes damaging? What about some damage now to make way for something new or for a renewal?

My choice in Druid would of course depend on the campaign.


Animal companions get two actions if you spend one action.

A large bear comes online at level 14, as does bear hug.


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Oh, they can get wild shape at first now? That's nice.
It really sucked having to wait till the second book for your character's shtick to come online. Certainly, it was a roleplaying opportunity, but the option to skip it and just have it be part of who the character already is can leave room for other stories you might fancy telling.

Paizo Employee Designer

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TheFinish wrote:
Kerobelis wrote:
Does the animal companion use your actions or does it have its own?

I think it was mentioned elsewhere that it takes 1 action from the PC to give the Animal Companion 2 Actions. I might be wrong though.

This all looks.....ok. Nothing that makes me go wow or boo. I don't particularly care for the Orders dictating access to stuff like goodberry or heal animal, but whatever.

Also, isn't 8 HP kinda low for a Bear? Do they add something to that? Also what's their AC and stuff? Or is that referenced in a general Animal Companion Table?

8 HP is the HP for being a bear, kind of like how ancestries give you a bump.


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For more animal companion info, check here: animal companions

For more Druid info, check here:
Druid
and here:
Druid, part 2


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I wonder what our magic animals do when we aren't paying attention to them.
If a bear is stabbed by a goblin, and the druid isn't around to donate actions, does the bear make a sound?


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Looking good. I like the role play suggestions very helpful for new players but well worded with lots of conditional modifiers.


KingOfAnything wrote:
I like the different orders. There are a few ways to build a druid and Orders, like the bard's Muses, give characters a direction from level 1. Often in PF1, it took several levels before build difference would become apparent.

Yeah, I do like how these new druids can clearly be built to an order's theme without needing to trade out excess features with archetypes, and get the basic goodies at first level. I also like that you don't HAVE to specialize in any one particular set of order feats if you don't want to.


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james014Aura wrote:

I'm curious about the anathema for storm druids. What constitutes damaging? What about some damage now to make way for something new or for a renewal?

My choice in Druid would of course depend on the campaign.

Agreed. What if I want to play a druid themed around wildfires or hurricanes or volcanoes? Natural disasters are a part of nature, and they certainly don't spare the trees.


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Mark Seifter wrote:
TheFinish wrote:
Kerobelis wrote:
Does the animal companion use your actions or does it have its own?

I think it was mentioned elsewhere that it takes 1 action from the PC to give the Animal Companion 2 Actions. I might be wrong though.

This all looks.....ok. Nothing that makes me go wow or boo. I don't particularly care for the Orders dictating access to stuff like goodberry or heal animal, but whatever.

Also, isn't 8 HP kinda low for a Bear? Do they add something to that? Also what's their AC and stuff? Or is that referenced in a general Animal Companion Table?

8 HP is the HP for being a bear, kind of like how ancestries give you a bump.

Animal companions get 6+Con mod/level hp. Bears get an extra 8 at first.

Scarab Sages

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I'm a little wary of things like taking a feat just to increase damage by +1/ability level, but overall this looks sweet. I love Animal Companion-focused characters, so as long as there are plenty of interesting, MEANINGFUL options (not just +X to damage), I'll be very pleased with this iteration of the druid.

Paizo Employee Designer

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1of1 wrote:

I wonder what our magic animals do when we aren't paying attention to them.

If a bear is stabbed by a goblin, and the druid isn't around to donate actions, does the bear make a sound?

There's a default, but basically in most situations they try to use actions to get out of danger and protect themselves. Also, animal order druids can eventually always get at least one chosen action out of their companion even when they aren't using an action to Command it.


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Palmizio wrote:
I have never been so early. I don't know what to do

It's nothing to be embarrassed about, this happens to a lot of people.

Paizo Employee Designer

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Davor wrote:
I'm a little wary of things like taking a feat just to increase damage by +1/ability level, but overall this looks sweet. I love Animal Companion-focused characters, so as long as there are plenty of interesting, MEANINGFUL options (not just +X to damage), I'll be very pleased with this iteration of the druid.

If you mean tempest surge, that feat does three total things (counting the extra SP as a thing) if you are a storm order druid. If you aren't, you get limited access to tempest surge. Those who have been following the blogs since much much earlier might actually know which feat it is.


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So the Claw/Wing druid is the "focus on Animal Companions" Druid, the Wild Druid is the "focus on Wild Shaping" Druid, and the Storm Druid is the "focus on hurling lightning etc. around Druid" all of which are things we're familiar with from PF1, at least conceptually.

I'm a little less clear on where the leaf druid fits though. Is "I do Plants" such a broadly applicable thing that this is a reasonable choice for a wide variety of campaigns? Having diplomacy as a signature skill seems great for a druid in a more urban campaign, but there aren't going to be a ton of trees around.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:

So the Claw/Wing druid is the "focus on Animal Companions" Druid, the Wild Druid is the "focus on Wild Shaping" Druid, and the Storm Druid is the "focus on hurling lightning etc. around Druid" all of which are things we're familiar with from PF1, at least conceptually.

I'm a little less clear on where the leaf druid fits though. Is "I do Plants" such a broadly applicable thing that this is a reasonable choice for a wide variety of campaigns?

Well, it gets you a familiar and presumably the ability to consistently feed the party at low levels. In cities, you have a spy. In the wilderness, you have food. Unless the animal shape spell lasts longer than a minute, it’s the best out-of-combat choice.

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
PossibleCabbage wrote:

So the Claw/Wing druid is the "focus on Animal Companions" Druid, the Wild Druid is the "focus on Wild Shaping" Druid, and the Storm Druid is the "focus on hurling lightning etc. around Druid" all of which are things we're familiar with from PF1, at least conceptually.

I'm a little less clear on where the leaf druid fits though. Is "I do Plants" such a broadly applicable thing that this is a reasonable choice for a wide variety of campaigns? Having diplomacy as a signature skill seems great for a druid in a more urban campaign, but there aren't going to be a ton of trees around.

Just because there aren't trees, doesn't mean there aren't plants. Leaf makes a lot of sense as an urban druid, encouraging window boxes and community green space.


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Hmmm.

So 'primal Druids as opposed to primal sorcerers....' But they both use the same spell list, yes? So deep faith vs. fey and blood seems somewhat irrelevant.

Not particularly a fan of the Druid as weird 'both sides' mediator.

Animal and plant Druids: any way to opt out of the companion or familiar? Hate those.

Stormborn: confused by weather powers but anathema to change weather. That seems like e point of choosing that order, surely?

Was going to complain about inifinite spells via ley line, but then realized it was 20th level. Never mind, don't care.

Wild's anathema seems really vague and easily avoided.

This feels a bit like unrelated classes jammed together as some sort of uber-gestalt. With clever feat selections end up as a cleric/ranger/wizard with free pocket fighter.


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Mark Seifter wrote:


There's a default, but basically in most situations they try to use actions to get out of danger and protect themselves. Also, animal order druids can eventually always get at least one chosen action out of their companion even when they aren't using an action to Command it.

So does that mean that a druid can just leave their companion on autopilot once their companion engages an enemy (because that can be labeled under "protect themselves"), and only really need to spend an action to change their orders or do something complicated? When an animal companion is not under "direct control', does it have three actions?


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I'm confused by the Storm Anathema. Wouldn't one of the draws of playing such a Druid be precisely what the Anathema prohibits? Controlling the weather to mess with your enemies? So like, turning a sunny day into a terrifying thunderstorm to stop an army, that kind of stuff? Which would inevitably damage the enviroment.

Unless "unnatural weather pattern" means something like "it snows in the Sahara" and not "I conjure up a typhoon in Hong Kong".

Grand Lodge

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I'd really like to get concrete rules for what happens to an Animal Companion when the master dies in PF2. Because in PF1 it's a bit of a mess.

In PF1, since they're a class feature of a dead character, they technically should lose all benefits of being an animal companion, but that makes 0 sense.


So, is it possible to be Druid without Wildshape? Or do they all get it, and the Wild Order just gets it sooner?


Seems strong at first glance, but I'm sure it also has downsides we dont know of yet

Grand Lodge

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wizzardman wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:


There's a default, but basically in most situations they try to use actions to get out of danger and protect themselves. Also, animal order druids can eventually always get at least one chosen action out of their companion even when they aren't using an action to Command it.
So does that mean that a druid can just leave their companion on autopilot once their companion engages an enemy (because that can be labeled under "protect themselves"), and only really need to spend an action to change their orders or do something complicated? When an animal companion is not under "direct control', does it have three actions?

If you want your animal companion to flee, sure. At least, that's what it sounds like.


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Do urban Plant Druids run medical dispensaries? Do I need a prescription?

Asking for a friend.


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Quote:

You surround a foe in a swirling storm of violent winds, roiling clouds, and crackling lightning. The storm deals 1d10 electricity damage to the target, depending on their Reflex saving throw.

Success Half damage.

Critical Success No damage.

Failure Full damage, and the target is sluggish 1 for 1 round.

Critical Failure Double damage, and the target is sluggish 2 for 1 round.

I really wish this was more like

Quote:

1d10 Electricity Damage to one target.

Target's Reflex Saving Throw:
* Critical Success: Target takes no damage.
* Success: Target takes half damage.
* Failure: Target takes damage, and is Sluggish 1 for 1 round.
* Critical Failure: Target takes double damage, and is Sluggish 2 for 1 round.

You surround a foe in a swirling storm of violent winds, roiling clouds, and crackling lightning.

Organize the information in order of importance in the moment that it's being queried. Half the time in combat is going to be spent parsing through flavor fluff that's mixed in with the actual mechanics. Also the order of success, crit success, etc, continues to confuse me every time I see it. You have a four degrees of success system so put them in the order of their degree. Best to worst or worst to best.

Dark Archive

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Well, that decides it. First thing I'm building is a Storm Druid.

Power! Unnnn-li-mi-ted Poooooweeeeeeeeeeeerrrrrrrr!


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I see the Anathema as an admonition against terraforming and creation of blights. A few cracked branches are likely not a big deal, but even though a forest fire can renew an environment, that isn't the Druids call. Causing a fire out of raw neglect is also right out. Consult your local spiritual resources for guidance and support in all conflagration concerns.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32, 2011 Top 16

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Thoughts and comments:

1) Don't like the orders as implemented. Looks like they aren't particularly nice to evil druids for one thing. Sorry evil druid, if you want to be animal order, you can't be cruel to animals, even though that's often an evil druid shtick to embrace nature's cruelty. Same seems to apply for leaf and storm. I guess all evil druids have to be wild or break their anathema.
2) I don't have a problem with orders having unique abilities only they can get, but goodberry? That's one of the most iconic druid spells ever, it shouldn't be limited to only a single order. Having the leaf order get enhanced goodberries, that would be great, but having other orders not be able to use goodberry, bad call.
3) the wild anathema seems pretty light compared to the other orders. More of a "don't get comfortable with those civilized things" rather than a "don't do this" stricture like the others. Seems a bit unbalanced. How about something like "never sleep on a non-natural surface" so even when the wild druid sleeps in town, they're laying in the park or vegetable patch instead of on a bed or even the floor of the inn (unless it's a dirt floor)
4) Animal companions - this is the first I'm hearing that you need to spend an action to give your animal companions 2 actions - that seems pretty awful. It means that your animal companion is essentially fury of blows - 1 action for 2) rather than a separate creature. Also, means that while the bear is faster at 35 speed, it and the druid are actually slower than the rest of the party, since they can take 3 actions even with a speed of 25, for 75 in a turn, but the druid can move 50 and the bear 70 in the same amount of time. I guess it's a lot easier now to be "faster than the bear" and not have to worry about just being faster than your friend. Also, how does this work if a druid is unconscious? Does your animal companion stop being able to act?
5) Work together benefit seems "wrong". Not sure if it's better or worse than an actual attack from the bear, but it seems wrong that it just give bonus damage when you hit rather than having to actually hit itself. Scratching my head at the logic of that one.
6) How exactly does the bear learn the bear hug maneuver? Shouldn't it get a tag like "feat 8" or something to show it's selectible at level 8?


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I hope the Gnomish Arial Cavalry exploit has been closed (where generally only small druids could have a proper flying mount at 1st level). I've always hated that flying mounts were unfairly gated.

Dark Archive

Mark Seifter wrote:
Davor wrote:
I'm a little wary of things like taking a feat just to increase damage by +1/ability level, but overall this looks sweet. I love Animal Companion-focused characters, so as long as there are plenty of interesting, MEANINGFUL options (not just +X to damage), I'll be very pleased with this iteration of the druid.
If you mean tempest surge, that feat does three total things (counting the extra SP as a thing) if you are a storm order druid. If you aren't, you get limited access to tempest surge. Those who have been following the blogs since much much earlier might actually know which feat it is.

Based on info from the PaizoCon Banquet, we know that taking new Storm Order powers as a member of the Storm Order gives you additional Spell Points, so my bet is that the feat increases damage to d12s and also grants bonus SP. The third thing, though, I'm not sure of.


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It's a shame that the wild order's anathema flies in the face of what I was planning on doing with my druid character for one of the playtest adventures (i.e. a druid spymaster, who uses wild shape, speak with animals, ect to gather info), but at least wild shape is able to be taken by any druid. Hopefully the wild shape feats will be mostly universal, not just limited to wild order druids.

Other than that, this looks neat.


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Ooh! Still hate prepared casters, but the animal druid is calling my name...

Animal companions look great. I really like the Work Together ability - negates the old "welp, my animal companion can't hit/damage this thing" problem in an elegant way. Bear hug looks fun too.

Leaf druid seems neat, but I really wish that metamorphosis entry was a little more clearly broken up into "passive" and "active" sections. It took me like 3 readings of it to process that half of it was a permanent transformation and half of it was an active ability (and I'm still not 100% on how it works?).

Wild druid... I know people who will love that. Would have appreciated knowing more about how polymorph spells work (hopefully lessons were learned from the Shifter...), but maybe that'll be on Friday?

Storm druid seemed the least exciting, but still a flavorful option to have. That power seems cool! I see room for player/GM arguments about the anathema, though - it's a bit rough having all kinds of storm/weather powers but having a fairly vague anathema about their use.

I can't say I'm super excited about Leyline Conduit. It's like that one sorcerer ability, except more limited, which feels bad for the druid and also makes the sorcerer's ability feel less special. But we'll have to see it in play.

Paizo Employee Designer

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TheFinish wrote:

I'm confused by the Storm Anathema. Wouldn't one of the draws of playing such a Druid be precisely what the Anathema prohibits? Controlling the weather to mess with your enemies? So like, turning a sunny day into a terrifying thunderstorm to stop an army, that kind of stuff? Which would inevitably damage the enviroment.

Unless "unnatural weather pattern" means something like "it snows in the Sahara" and not "I conjure up a typhoon in Hong Kong".

Something like mega drought in the rainforest, snow in the Sahara, anything that is so far off that the local environment isn't ready to handle it and could be truly damaged as a whole should be off limits. Damaging a few things in the environment is one thing, damaging the environment itself is another.


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David Silver - Ponyfinder wrote:
wizzardman wrote:


So does that mean that a druid can just leave their companion on autopilot once their companion engages an enemy (because that can be labeled under "protect themselves"), and only really need to spend an action to change their orders or do something complicated? When an animal companion is not under "direct control', does it have three actions?
If you want your animal companion to flee, sure. At least, that's what it sounds like.

I mean, the alternative is that you're literally spending a few seconds every turn coaxing your animal companion into moving, like a confused puppy you're trying to convince to chase a stick. Not exactly an impressive sight.


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I don't know if this is the right place to raise this, but is there an advantage to referring to "Exploration Mode" and "Downtime Mode" using that terminology? Seems unnecessarily technical to me.


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A thought occurs, can someone direct their companion multiple times in their turn until they run out of actions? Or is it just once per turn?


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Maybe it's just me, but I find the new Wild Shape disappointing. I was kinda hoping for something along the lines of Shifter but better, not 1/a couple of free casts of Generic Polymorph Spell.

Also I'm gonna give funny looks to anyone who tries to bring a Wild druid to an urban campaign, given in my experience most of the characters of urban campaigns are the inhabitants of said urban area, which is apparently fall-worthy of a Wild druid.


Lockewood wrote:
A thought occurs, can someone direct their companion multiple times in their turn until they run out of actions? Or is it just once per turn?

That would be 6 actions :O I smurfing hope not!

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