The Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rulebook is set to release on August 13th, 2009, and in anticipation, we are releasing a preview of the game each week until the game hits store shelves. This week, we are taking a look at Valeros, the iconic fighter.
Male human fighter 14
NG Medium humanoid Init +5; Senses Perception +13 DEFENSE AC 28, touch 17, flat-footed 23; (+10 armor, +2 deflection, +5 Dex, +1 shield) hp 137 (14d10+56) Fort +12, Ref +9, Will +3 (+7 against fear) Resist fire 10 OFFENSE Spd 30 ft. Melee+3 keen longsword +23/+18/+13 (1d8+13/17–20), +2 frost shortsword +20/+15/+10 (1d6+7 plus 1d6 cold/19–20) Ranged+1 flaming composite shortbow +20/+15/+10 (1d6+4 plus 1d6 fire/x3) STATISTICS Str 16, Dex 20, Con 16, Int 13, Wis 8, Cha 10 Base Atk +14; CMB +17; CMD 34 Feats Combat Expertise, Double Slice, Greater Two-Weapon Fighting, Greater Weapon Focus (longsword), Greater Weapon Specialization (longsword), Improved Two-Weapon Fighting, Improved Vital Strike, Power Attack, Toughness, Two-Weapon Defense, Two-Weapon Fighting, Two-Weapon Rend, Vital Strike, Weapon Focus (longsword, shortsword), Weapon Specialization (longsword) Skills Climb +20, Intimidate +17, Perception +13, Ride +22, Swim +20 Languages Common, Halfling SQ armor training +3, bravery +4, weapon training (heavy blades +3, light blades +2, close +1) Combat Gearnecklace of fireballs (type V), potion of cure serious wounds (3), potion of fly, potion of heroism, rod of flame extinguishing; Other Gearbag of holding (type II), +4 fire resistant light fortification breastplate, +1 flaming composite shortbow (+3 Str), +2 frost short sword, belt of physical perfection +2, boots of levitation, +3 keen longsword, periapt of wound closure, ring of protection +2, ring of the ram
First off, the new Valeros is designed to dish out the hurt, but his AC is a bit low for a character of his level. He can fix this in combat by using Combat Expertise, which at his level gives him a +4 dodge bonus to his AC (which also adds to his Combat Maneuver Defense, but more on that later) but taking a –4 penalty on attack rolls for 1 round. He can also used Power Attack to add +8 damage on attacks made with his longsword and +4 damage on attacks made with his shortsword by taking an additional –4 penalty on attack rolls. He would probably not want to use both at the same time, but he can mix it up as dictated by the situation. If he manages to hit one target with both his longsword and shortsword in the same round, he deals an additional 1d10+4 points of damage thanks to Two-Weapon Rend.
All of this assumes that Valeros begins his turn adjacent to an enemy. If not, he can charge up and make a single attack with his longsword using both Power Attack and Improved Vital Strike. This devastating attack is made at a +23 bonus and it deals 3d8+21. Note that Valeros can move 30 feet during this charge, despite wearing a breastplate. This is due to his armor training, which allows him to move at full speed while wearing such armor.
You might notice a new statistic in Valeros' stat block. CMD, which stands for Combat Maneuver Defense. This statistic is the DC for anyone else to perform a combat maneuver, such as bull rush, disarm, or grapple, against Valeros. This statistic is derived from his CMB +10 plus a number of other modifiers (Dexterity and deflection bonuses in this case). Note that Valeros adds his weapon training bonuses to his CMD whenever anyone tries to disarm or sunder weapons from those groups (he also adds these bonuses to combat maneuver checks made using weapons from those groups).
Lastly, Valeros has some fun magic items at his disposal. You can never go wrong with a necklace of fireballs (type V), especially when you are wearing fire resistant armor. The periapt of wound closure protects him from bleed damage, which is a bit more common with some of the new higher-level feats (Bleeding Critical comes to mind). Lastly, the ring of the ram is a great toy for a fighter like Valeros to control the battlefield a bit. Using just 1 charge allows him to make a bull rush combat maneuver at a +17 bonus, which should be enough to push smaller monsters around.
That's about all for this week. There are a few other tidbits hidden in the stat block for the math savvy, but I will leave those for the messageboards to puzzle out. Next week, in part 3 of our 14-week preview, we're going to take a close look at Seoni, the iconic sorcerer. And by close, I mean very close, close enough to examine her blood.