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Winter Witch Revisited

Thursday, September 13, 2012


Illustration by Ryan Portillo

It's the end of the summer, and while it's not winter quite yet, we got you a frosty gift. When we recently released Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Paths of Prestige there were some questions on the messageboards regarding the winter witch prestige class and how it worked with hexes and spells and some of the other goodies the prestige class gets. Since we're gearing up for the Reign of Winter Adventure Path, we decided we'd revisit the winter witch, make a few clarifications, and present you fine folks with the result. We wanted to get it cleared up so people can play the class in the Adventure Path, but don't think we're being completely altruistic—we really wanted to make sure that the White Witches of Irrisen provide a significant challenge to pesky adventurers making trouble and poking their nose in their nation's frozen business!

Download the New Winter Witch Spread! (1.2MB zip/PDF)

Adam Daigle
Developer

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Pathfinder Campaign Setting Ryan Portillo Witches
1 to 50 of 73 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | next > last >>

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

So she effectively loses one caster level but retains full hex progression while gaining these other cool abilities... Woah. The WW is a beast. Thanks for fixing her up Paizo crew!

Paizo Employee Developer

She also technically loses her 4th level hex because of the winter witch archetype, but that happened before the prestige class is available.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Yoink.


Wow...
I make the question some weeks ago and now see this. I really thank you the clarification. And yes, the question was for play one when Reign of Winter begins.


Dumb question, but is this updated in the pdf for Paths of Prestige?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Modules Subscriber

^ Yea that's my question too

Qadira

Also, the new wording of Hyperboreal Patronage says:

A winter witch’s patron reveals an icy aspect. A winter witch adds the following spells to her spell list at the following class levels, but does not automatically learn them:
3rd—wall of ice, 5th—icy prisonUM, 7th—freezing sphere.

Whereas the original wording said:

A winter witch’s patron reveals an icy aspect, granting her the following spells as patron spells at the following class levels:
1st—ice spearsISM, 3rd—wall of ice, 5th—icy prisonUM, 7th—freezing sphere, 9th—fire storm (deals cold damage instead of fire). These replace any patron spells a winter witch might receive from a previous class.

The difference being the original wording included ice spears at level 1 and fire (ice) storm at level 9. Is the omission intentional?

Cheliax

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Very cool, and I imagine in the near future the Paths of Prestige will get updated. But likely they will wait a bit to see if there is some more errors.

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

There's a touch more than that; the WW no longer gains the spell automatically and must either scroll it or choose it as their level up spell (assuming she takes future levels in witch). Thus, the lack of those other spells being added to the spell list would be intentional in my book.

Qadira

Hmm. An odd situation. I'd like to reference this updated wording in the Section 15 part of d20pfsrd.com but there is nothing to reference in the PDF...?

Paizo Employee Developer

Black Powder Chocobo is correct.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Cards, Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Any Chance Mike will make this PFS Legal?


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Am I the only one who looked at the art of the witch and said, "D'aw ... that frosty ferret is ADORABLE!" ?

Paizo Employee Developer

Dragnmoon wrote:
Any Chance Mike will make this PFS Legal?

There is a non-zero chance, yes. Beyond that, you'll just have to wait and see.

Cheliax

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Alexander Augunas wrote:
Am I the only one who looked at the art of the witch and said, "D'aw ... that frosty ferret is ADORABLE!" ?

Nope and it stays that way right up until... it eats the nose off your face.... but it would still be cute even then. :)

Paizo Employee Developer

6 people marked this as a favorite.

That's Ernie the ermine!

Cheliax

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Isn't a ermine just a type of weasel?


correct: ermine, mink, weasel, wolverine, skunk all in same family

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Cards, Companion, Maps, Pawns, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Dark_Mistress wrote:
Isn't a ermine just a type of weasel?

Close. An ermine is a stoat (similar to a weasel) in winter colouring (white, flecked with black; it's seen as the trimming on several kinds of traditional regalia, such as that worn by some members of the House of Lords during the opening ceremonies for the British parliament).

It's seen a lot in heraldry, too, often as a white border with black spots (which represent the black tails of the ermine).


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Nice rework. I'm really liking the fact that Paizo is going back doing a little errata or revisit here and there, some FAQ answering, clearing up some grey areas within arhcetypes/rules, etc.

Believe me from a customer point of view this is going to make the game longer lasting and more appealing as it sends out a strong signal to the base that you're aware of and working issues within the game.

Good job guys!


I feel I should note that the witch spell list does not have any 3rd level cold spells. Thus, to qualify, you have to either have the winter patron or convince your DM to let you summon ice elementals (thus, allowing you to summon 1d3 ice elementals as a level 3 cold spell).

Edit: Wait, found one. Please disregard my previous statement.

Cheliax

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
OldManAlexi wrote:
I feel I should note that the witch spell list does not have any 3rd level cold spells. Thus, to qualify, you have to either have the winter patron or convince your DM to let you summon ice elementals (thus, allowing you to summon 1d3 ice elementals as a level 3 cold spell).

In Inner Sea Magic Witches get Ice Spears as a 3rd level spell. Not to mention they get Sleet Storm which is a cold based spell in the Core Rule Book.


Dark_Mistress wrote:
OldManAlexi wrote:
I feel I should note that the witch spell list does not have any 3rd level cold spells. Thus, to qualify, you have to either have the winter patron or convince your DM to let you summon ice elementals (thus, allowing you to summon 1d3 ice elementals as a level 3 cold spell).
In Inner Sea Magic Witches get Ice Spears as a 3rd level spell. Not to mention they get Sleet Storm which is a cold based spell in the Core Rule Book.

Still kind of annoying. You already have to take the Winter Witch archetype, which predisposes you to cold spells. It doesn't seem necessary to add this requirement.

Maybe they're trying to keep you from taking it with less than 5 levels of Witch?

Cheliax

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
thejeff wrote:
Dark_Mistress wrote:
OldManAlexi wrote:
I feel I should note that the witch spell list does not have any 3rd level cold spells. Thus, to qualify, you have to either have the winter patron or convince your DM to let you summon ice elementals (thus, allowing you to summon 1d3 ice elementals as a level 3 cold spell).
In Inner Sea Magic Witches get Ice Spears as a 3rd level spell. Not to mention they get Sleet Storm which is a cold based spell in the Core Rule Book.

Still kind of annoying. You already have to take the Winter Witch archetype, which predisposes you to cold spells. It doesn't seem necessary to add this requirement.

Maybe they're trying to keep you from taking it with less than 5 levels of Witch?

That's my guess, is that requirement is in there to make sure you can't take the PrC sooner than 6th.


Dark_Mistress wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Dark_Mistress wrote:
OldManAlexi wrote:
I feel I should note that the witch spell list does not have any 3rd level cold spells. Thus, to qualify, you have to either have the winter patron or convince your DM to let you summon ice elementals (thus, allowing you to summon 1d3 ice elementals as a level 3 cold spell).
In Inner Sea Magic Witches get Ice Spears as a 3rd level spell. Not to mention they get Sleet Storm which is a cold based spell in the Core Rule Book.

Still kind of annoying. You already have to take the Winter Witch archetype, which predisposes you to cold spells. It doesn't seem necessary to add this requirement.

Maybe they're trying to keep you from taking it with less than 5 levels of Witch?

That's my guess, is that requirement is in there to make sure you can't take the PrC sooner than 6th.

Well, you already can't due to the skill requirements, but this means you can't multiclass. Though, if you really wanted to, 1 level of Witch and 5 of another full caster class would work, but be silly.


Hum, I wonder if we might see prestige classes for the other seasons.


I doubt it. Winter Witch is specifically for setting: They're the rulers of Irrisen.

Unless there's something else that would be seasonal and really fit another part of the world, I don't see it as likely.

Paizo Employee Developer

3 people marked this as a favorite.

Is that a request for Summer Summoners and Autumn Alchemists?


Only if Summer Summoners get to summon Spring Chickens as a special type of eidolon. cue sad trumpet


Mark Moreland wrote:
Is that a request for Summer Summoners and Autumn Alchemists?

Nah. Enough of the alliterations. There should be Summer Druid, Spring Bard and Autumn Oracle... Or vice versa.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Spring Bard gets Inspire Fornication instead of Inspire Courage. 'tis the season.

Cheliax

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Mark Moreland wrote:
Is that a request for Summer Summoners and Autumn Alchemists?

Don't forget the Spring Witch with a bunny familiar.

Andoran

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Cheapy wrote:
Spring Bard gets Inspire Fornication instead of Inspire Courage. 'tis the season.

How many ranks in Perform (Morris Dance) would that need? And would they know of the Other Morris Dance?

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

A Fall Druid shapechanging into a tripping wolf...


Black Powder Chocobo wrote:
A Fall Druid shapechanging into a tripping wolf...

Fail druid? Yup, he will trip oneself lots of times.

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Cards, Companion, Maps, Pawns, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Mark Moreland wrote:
Is that a request for Summer Summoners and Autumn Alchemists?

I was rather hoping for Spring Surprise ...

Cheliax

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
JohnF wrote:
Mark Moreland wrote:
Is that a request for Summer Summoners and Autumn Alchemists?

I was rather hoping for Spring Surprise ...

The Spring Witches Bunny familiar will leave you a Spring "Surprise"...

Cheliax

So, to clarify...

Does "effects of her hex and other witch class abilities" (emphasis) mean Patron bonus spells still accrue as part of Witch/Winter Witch PrC stacking?

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Cards, Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
bdk86 wrote:

So, to clarify...

Does "effects of her hex and other witch class abilities" (emphasis) mean Patron bonus spells still accrue as part of Witch/Winter Witch PrC stacking?

I know you talked about using the Winter Witch prestige class for your PFS character, just so you are aware, neither the one in path of prestige or the errataed one here in the blog are legal for PFS play yet. Not sure if you caught that.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Cards, Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

And that will change Wednesday....

Michael Brock wrote:

Follow those on line clarifications.

Also,on Wed., both the Hellknight Signifier and Witer Witch from Paths of Prestige will become legal. You may use the updated Winter Witch posted on the blog.


Hmmm I noticed in this new write up the Witch no longer gets the COLD based Hexes automatically, but instead is required to take them. Meaning, before they were 3 free EXTRA hexes, now they are not...

Paths of Prestige Winter Witch wrote:

Bonus Hexes: At 5th level and every two levels thereafter,

a winter witch gains the following major hexes in addition
to those gained from normal advancement: 5th—ice
tomb UM , 7th—hoarfrost UM , 9th—numbing chill (see below).
If a winter witch already has this hex, she may instead gain
any other hex she meets the prerequisites for.
New Updated Winter Witch wrote:

Winter Hex: Starting at 5th level, whenever a winter witch

can choose a major hex, she must choose from the following
hexes: ice tomb UM , hoarfrost UM , numbing chill (see below).
Once the winter witch has selected all three winter hexes,
she may thereafter choose any other hex she meets the
prerequisites for.

So, while not having to give up their regular patron spells like before, they DO have to now give up 3 non-ice based major hexes possibly. Not sure the trade-off is balanced (as in giving essentially losing 3 bonus hexes to get more spells), and it's surely not a "BEAST" in comparison IMO as the first poster says...

OH and YES FERRETS ARE ADORABLE. Totally 2nd favorite animal after cats. (wolves are a whole other category... love wolves, wouldn't want one as a pet haha he'd eat me!)


So hey how about adding "Winter Wolf" to the Improved Familiar list? A Witch Witch with a Winter Wolf familiar would be nearly as epic as sharks with frickin' laser beams on their heads!


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
AbsolutGrndZer0 wrote:

Hmmm I noticed in this new write up the Witch no longer gets the COLD based Hexes automatically, but instead is required to take them. Meaning, before they were 3 free EXTRA hexes, now they are not...

Paths of Prestige Winter Witch wrote:

Bonus Hexes: At 5th level and every two levels thereafter,

a winter witch gains the following major hexes in addition
to those gained from normal advancement: 5th—ice
tomb UM , 7th—hoarfrost UM , 9th—numbing chill (see below).
If a winter witch already has this hex, she may instead gain
any other hex she meets the prerequisites for.
New Updated Winter Witch wrote:

Winter Hex: Starting at 5th level, whenever a winter witch

can choose a major hex, she must choose from the following
hexes: ice tomb UM , hoarfrost UM , numbing chill (see below).
Once the winter witch has selected all three winter hexes,
she may thereafter choose any other hex she meets the
prerequisites for.

So, while not having to give up their regular patron spells like before, they DO have to now give up 3 non-ice based major hexes possibly. Not sure the trade-off is balanced (as in giving essentially losing 3 bonus hexes to get more spells), and it's surely not a "BEAST" in comparison IMO as the first poster says...

BUT, as originally written, Winter Witches did not gain hexes via normal witch progression at all, and now they do.

Cheliax

AbsolutGrndZer0 wrote:
Hex Stuff

Whether or not they continued to get regular hexes as if still progressing through the Witch Base Class depended on one's reading of the class; that was where a lot of the confusion came from.

AbsolutGrndZer0 wrote:


So, while not having to give up their regular patron spells like before, they DO have to now give up 3 non-ice based major hexes possibly. Not sure the trade-off is balanced (as in giving essentially losing 3 bonus hexes to get more spells), and it's surely not a "BEAST" in comparison IMO as the first poster says...

I'm pretty "meh" on Hoarfrost (if only for the long term effects involved), but Ice Tomb is an excellent control spell akin to Sleep hex for putting troublesome targets (Read: Casters whose Will saves make using Slumber hex on them hard) out of the fight.

Numbing Chill is also amazing for anyone playing a Winter Witch already, given they are going to be loaded with cold spells which will in turn have high DCs (Ice Magic+Likelihood of Elemental Focus Cold). Where the Winter Witch Archetype hex turns any touch spell into a Cold Damage/Cold Descriptor spell, Numbing Chill takes ranged cold spells and makes them just plain mean. Ray of Frost (granted by Winter Witch Arcehtype) can be turned into a 1d3 Cold Damage+1d4 Dex Damage/Staggered spell. As cantrip.

So really, you're just losing flexibility in major hexes and being asked to take one that is less than optimal. Not too shabby a trade off.


bdk86 wrote:
AbsolutGrndZer0 wrote:
Hex Stuff

Whether or not they continued to get regular hexes as if still progressing through the Witch Base Class depended on one's reading of the class; that was where a lot of the confusion came from.

AbsolutGrndZer0 wrote:


So, while not having to give up their regular patron spells like before, they DO have to now give up 3 non-ice based major hexes possibly. Not sure the trade-off is balanced (as in giving essentially losing 3 bonus hexes to get more spells), and it's surely not a "BEAST" in comparison IMO as the first poster says...

I'm pretty "meh" on Hoarfrost (if only for the long term effects involved), but Ice Tomb is an excellent control spell akin to Sleep hex for putting troublesome targets (Read: Casters whose Will saves make using Slumber hex on them hard) out of the fight.

Numbing Chill is also amazing for anyone playing a Winter Witch already, given they are going to be loaded with cold spells which will in turn have high DCs (Ice Magic+Likelihood of Elemental Focus Cold). Where the Winter Witch Archetype hex turns any touch spell into a Cold Damage/Cold Descriptor spell, Numbing Chill takes ranged cold spells and makes them just plain mean. Ray of Frost (granted by Winter Witch Arcehtype) can be turned into a 1d3 Cold Damage+1d4 Dex Damage/Staggered spell. As cantrip.

So really, you're just losing flexibility in major hexes and being asked to take one that is less than optimal. Not too shabby a trade off.

Hmmm good point. Heh.


Odraude wrote:

Dumb question, but is this updated in the pdf for Paths of Prestige?

Since no one answered my question, I went ahead and looked it up and it looks like the original PDF has not been updated. Is there a chance that it can be updated with the latest errata?

Cheliax

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Odraude wrote:
Odraude wrote:

Dumb question, but is this updated in the pdf for Paths of Prestige?

Since no one answered my question, I went ahead and looked it up and it looks like the original PDF has not been updated. Is there a chance that it can be updated with the latest errata?

It will eventually. The question is when. My guess is at least a month maybe longer, I imagine when they do a PDF update they will want to fix any other spelling, grammar, etc errors they find as well or that we the fans point out to them.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Cards, Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I think this was a special case.

Paizo only updates the original PDF with an errata when they do a reprint of the book, and there has only been one book that was reprinted that was not a PFRPG rule book and that was Adventurer’s Armory. Unless Paths of Prestige sold a lot better then they expected like Adventurer’s Armory did I doubt we will ever see the PDF updated.


Dark_Mistress wrote:
Odraude wrote:
Odraude wrote:

Dumb question, but is this updated in the pdf for Paths of Prestige?

Since no one answered my question, I went ahead and looked it up and it looks like the original PDF has not been updated. Is there a chance that it can be updated with the latest errata?
It will eventually. The question is when. My guess is at least a month maybe longer, I imagine when they do a PDF update they will want to fix any other spelling, grammar, etc errors they find as well or that we the fans point out to them.

Fair enough. For the Winter Hexcraft, does it mean that the Winter Witch Prestige Class can take Hexes? I'm a little confused with that.


Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I'm under the impression that Paizo rarely, if ever, incorporates errata into soft cover products. Has to do with not adding errata until the next print run, and soft covers rarely need additional print runs or something.

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