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Halruun

Deadmanwalking's page

RPG Superstar 2015 Star Voter. Pathfinder Society Member. 7,489 posts (7,682 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 1 Pathfinder Society character. 2 aliases.


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Liberty's Edge

Note that Pharasma is Neutral. Her hatred of undead, while usually a point of agreement with Good deities, is not Good or righteous on its own. It's about them flouting the cycle of life and death which is her domain, not about their evil or unpleasantness by mortal standards.

Take, for example, a CG Vampire (theoretically possible): Sarenrae might welcome or applaud them, and other Good people and gods might be won over...Pharasma demands their destruction with the same fervor with which she demands that of any other vampire, and no amount of good deeds can ever change that because she hates what the vampire is, not what they do. This is particularly relevant since a Shadowdancer's companion shares his or her alignment.

So...while I have no answer to the question of how to get along with a Pharasmin and Nosoi while having a Shadow companion (beyond the reflavoring suggested above), I can answer the thread's title:

No, being a Shadowdancer has no inherent moral implications.

Liberty's Edge

Billybrainpan wrote:
1. Is there a direct correlation between good/evil and law/chaos?

No.

Billybrainpan wrote:
2. Is anything inherently or irredeemably good/evil?

Inherently? No. Irredeemably? Yes.

Billybrainpan wrote:
3. Can you know how good or bad an act is without exploring the whole scenario first?

No, but for extreme enough acts you can get a pretty good idea. Torture is pretty much always really bad regardless of the situation.

Billybrainpan wrote:
4. Should the morality of a player affect their character?

Sometimes. If you believe something is morally right and necessary, your Good aligned characters should probably believe it and do it. On the other hand, just because you believe something specific doesn't mean your character must...there can very much be intentional differences (or even complete reversals).

But just like any departures an imagined society takes from real societies must be in the context of real societies, an departures an imagined morality takes from one's real morality must be in the context of that real morality.

Billybrainpan wrote:
5. Does the morality of a player affect their character?

Yes, somewhat inevitably. But again, not necessarily a direct one-to-one correlation.

Billybrainpan wrote:
6. Does committing an evil act make you evil?

Depends on the severity of the act and the context. Someone can become evil from a single act, but most evil acts aren't bad enough to warrant that.

Billybrainpan wrote:
7. Committing several evil acts in pathfinder will change your alignment to evil. How does that relate to real life? Is that an accurate portrayal of morality?

Not in detail, it's profoundly oversimplified as compared to the complex nuances of real morality. But generally? Yes. You are in some ways what you do, context taken into account, and enough bad acts not justified by said context do indeed make you a bad person.

Liberty's Edge

Obbu wrote:
Did barbs lose out in the fort save department from rage changes?

Yes, Rage no longer gives a Fort Save bonus.

But as a Good Fort Save Class with Con-based Rage rounds...I doubt it's gonna matter all that much.

Liberty's Edge

wraithstrike wrote:
Every class gives +2 when flanking. Basically, you should set up the flank if it is feasible. Whether or not someone is playing a rogue should not be a factor.

The fact that four of the six PCs in my CotCT game (all the melee characters) just grabbed Outflank as their level 7 Feat (and were happy to do so) tends to bear this out, yeah.

Liberty's Edge

sowhereaminow wrote:
And what's with the fighters are inadequate outside of a fight talk? Judicious use of skill points, traits, feats, and equipment can make you a solid contributor to many non-combat situations. You're no bard or rogue by any stretch of the imagination, but absolutely useless? No.

Sure...but here's the thing: Any other character class other than Fighter would be better at it, given the same allocation of resources.

An Int 14 Human Fighter with two Traits involving skills and the Cosmopolitan Feat is certainly better at out-of-combat stuff than one with Int 7 and no resources invested...but he'd be notably better at such things as any other class in the game with Int 14, those two Traits, and Cosmopolitan. Given that several such Classes are equal or better combatants (even after spending one of their rarer Feats)...this is a problem. A Barbarian, for example, is precisely equal, except for having two more skill points per level, while a Magus has no more skill points, but has access to numerous utility spells and gets more benefit from Int and Int boosting items.

The point isn't that they're useless, the point is that (barring Lore Wardens) they are inferior to, oh, every other possible class you could've played.

sowhereaminow wrote:
If you dumped all of your mental stats to maximize physical ones, take nothing but combat feats, and sink your one skill point per level into Climb, then yes, you have built your fighter to be useless outside of combat.

The thing is, once again, the furthest dumped Fighter remains worse than the furthest dumped member of any other Class. An equally dumped Barbarian is, at 3 skills a level if human, several times better outside of combat.

sowhereaminow wrote:
Do you really need an 18 in all physical stats to be an effective fighter? If you are trying to "win the DPR race", I guess so. Otherwise, start with something lower and use the level increases and stat boosting equipment to get to where you want. Also, even a 12 in a mental stat can be significant at low level, and give you a solid base to grow on.

Sure. But it gives that to everyone...and an Int 12 Fighter is still worse off than an Int 12 Barbarian, Cavalier, or anything else.

sowhereaminow wrote:
Use traits to turn some non-traditional skills into class skills. Never know when your moderate skill can be used to aid Mr. Wizard and push his Knowledge Arcana over the DC needed to gain critical information! Or when the GM calls for a Knowledge Geography check and you are the only one at the table with the skill!

Again, this advice is good, but doesn't help the Fighter class specifically whatsoever. It's equally good advice for a Barbarian and if both take it...the Barbarian winds up notably better off than the Fighter.

sowhereaminow wrote:
Drop a General feat on skill boosters or Iron Will. Most of the primary fighter builds (barring archery and whip use) are effective after a handful of feats. Use one or two of those 21 (22 if human) feats on something to flesh out your abilities!

Sure, except utility Feats don't actually do a lot to make up for Fighter's Class weaknesses. Iron Will is no substitute for a Good Will Save (being a +2 rather than a +6, eventually).

sowhereaminow wrote:
Sorry for the rambling rant there. Been a lot of fighter bashing on threads lately. I guess people are getting ready for them to be the new rogue or monk. :-)

I've seen complaints over Fighters non-combat options for several years.

Liberty's Edge

Oncoming_Storm wrote:
Do you have to give up every feat? What if I only want one or two class features? I'm trying to gauge if VMC or just straight dipping into Oracle would be better for my Paladin character.

It's all or nothing. If you do it, you give up all five Feats.

That said, I recall Oracle sounding pretty worth it, with, eventually, two Revelations you can use at full level, among other things (and some restrictions on which Revelations, like no Dex-replacing ones...but not ones that restrict the classic Oradin build).

Liberty's Edge

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I give Fighters 4 skill points per level (as well as Perception and Knowledge - Local on their list) and Good Will Saves. This is a simple, easy, fix for their non-combat capabilities and rep for poor Saves that I highly recommend. It's worked out so far for my group, including not notably overpowering a Lore Warden (as compared to the other PCs).

I'm not sure I agree that they need too much of an in-combat boost though. They rely on full attacks...but so does everyone. So, before actually reading Unchained I'm leaning towards either not using Stamina or letting anyone Feat into it (though in the latter case, I'd give Fighters the Feat free of charge).

EDIT: More 'great minds think alike' than 'ninja'd' there...

Liberty's Edge

Oncoming_Storm wrote:
Can somebody spoil how Variant Multiclassing works? PDF isn't available for another 9 days and I'd like to run a few things by my GM before next session.

I don't have the book, but from what others have said:

You give up your 3rd, 7th, 11th, 15th, and 19th level Feats to get a selection of Class Abilities from the Class you VMC into.

These abilities are pre-chosen and do not include spells. Details obviously vary per class (VMC Rogue apparently gives Evasion, Uncanny dodge, and later up to 4d6 Sneak Attack, VMC Paladin gives Lay on Hands among other things, VMC Wizard gives School abilities and an Arcane Discovery or bonus Feat among other things, etc.)

Liberty's Edge

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Malag wrote:
My characters usually vary a lot in stats, but I usually don't attempt to reach 18 in single stat unless it's fairly easily achievable and fits my idea of character. Personally, having all good stats is my preferred way of play since I tend to play my PC's as smart, talkative and effective characters.

If we're talking personal preferences, I feel similarly about being smart, charming, and effective. That doesn't necessarily mean avoiding dump stats, though. In fact, the 'effective' part of that designation often necessitates some stat-dumping to work in any game where you aren't rolling for stats (and I hate rolling for stats).

In 20 point-buy, one dump stat often allows you to be good at everything else (18, 14, 14, 12, 12, 7 or 16, 16, 14, 14 12, 12, 7, or even 18, 16, 14, 12, 10, 7 or 18, 16, 14, 12, 12, 5 if the racial stat mods are good)...and that's often exactly what I'm looking for, so if I can find a way to mitigate the effects of the low stat I go with it.

For example, I'm a big fan of Investigators with Empiricist and Student of Philosophy to allow Int-based social and perception stuff and Conversion Inquisition to allow Wis-based social things (though not on the same character). Both allow dumping Cha, without any damage to the ability to talk (and thus, for everything but Cha damage).

As another example, my current favorite Barbarian build has Dex 7, Cha 16, and his first level in Oracle of Lore (he goes straight Barbarian thereafter), and Sidestep Secret to ignore his low Dex for almost everything, plus Focused Trance to win at Knowledges outside of combat (and maxed out social skills to rock in that arena as well).

For a third example, Bards and low Wisdom seem to go together excellently thematically, and as of level 2, effects precisely two things: Perception, and Will Save. And since even with the penalty, I can manage a +3-4 on both by that point...that'll do.

And as a final example, finesse builds can often dump Str and be fine, as can full casters (though I almost never play the latter).

So...as this whole post indicates, the whole point-buy system really encourages dump-stats in order to be competent at your primary area, and especially if you want to be good at other areas, too. There's really no way to make non-dumping characters the equal of those who dump without either rules changes (as I suggest above), or rolling for stats (which only increases inter-character disparity and is thus the opposite of help).

Liberty's Edge

Maralynn Rose wrote:
The name has nothing to do with it. It's the mechanics I'm after.

Which mechanics? Bleeding Wound, Kip-Up, Derring-Do and Swashbuckler's Grace? Or Charmed Life?

Because, prior to 15th level that's all a Swashbuckler gets that a Daring Champion doesn't get some equivalent to within a few levels. I mean, I guess there's Superior Feint and Improved Critical each four levels early...but a Challenge and a good Fort Save are so much better than those it's not even funny.

Liberty's Edge

Pip the fated wrote:
Thanks for the replies. It seems you caught two mistakes in my writeup: I had meant to write a composite shortbow (instead of crossbow), and the Lingering performance indeed gives 2 rounds extra, for each time I perform. In the last case, I was mistaken with the half-orc Favored class bonus, that gives +1 round per day. So far, I have 21 rounds total benefit per day, broken up in seven three-round increments. I think that should be enough.

That sounds sufficient, yeah. :)

Pip the fated wrote:
Fair point on the Int 13. I had somehow thought I might spend a stat point from leveling on Wis to bring it up to 10 and lose the penalty, but that just seems a waste. On the other hand, Int 13 lets me quality for some combat feats, and will allow me to cast level 3 wizard spells from scroll without having to use UMD for the Int.

And if you do want to invest in bumping something up, +Level in skills is more fun than +1 Will Save, too.

Pip the fated wrote:
The Adaptable enchantment on the shortbow sounds really nice, I'll be sure to buy that somewhere along the way. That will save me come cash now. I've had to use a sling in my latest adventure, but wasn't a fan. Maybe I'll buy some throwing daggers to tide me over and buy a MW composite shortbow after my next adventure. That should tide me over until I can afford the +1 and adaptable enchantment. Also, that means I have some cash available for the chain shirt. (Money was one reason for sticking to studded leather now).

That all sounds workable.

Pip the fated wrote:
I think I'll stick to the Tribal tattoo, even though it doesn't stack with archaeologist's luck. I can see merit in having it always available (even in suprise rounds and such) and it's also a big part of my background as I've written it.

Definitely stick with it, then. It's excellent insurance vs. surprise attacks and such anyway.

Finally, it will make me feel slightly less dirty for picking Fate's Favored. As it seems, that's really the best option there is for my second trait.

It really is.

Pip the fated wrote:

Just two more questions, that I thought of this morning:

- Are there any books that write about Chadali in more detail?

Not that I know of.

Pip the fated wrote:
- How important is it to have all kinds of weapons and materials, to deal with damage reduction? If that's important, I was thinking about adding a cold iron dagger (piercing) and a silvered light mace (bludgeoning) to my arsenal. Or is that going overboard?

No, that's a solid choice early on, and fairly cheap to boot at around 30 gp. It's not strictly required but it's a good idea.

Liberty's Edge

A Full BAB class plus Magus (Kensai) might do a good job of what you want. Kensai gets spells...but not as many as all that, and those you did would be enhancing your sword attacks and buffing, not doing other stuff.

The Full BAB class gets you the warrior stuff, while Kensai gets you Int to AC and the Shield spell, as well as Weapon Focus in your weapon of choice and a bunch of other cool stuff (plus Spell Combat and Spell Strike).

That does focus on Int quite a bit...but Khal Drogo wasn't exactly stupid, so that works for me.

What Full BAB class to use depends on whether you're gonna go Dex or Str based and whether you want a mount, with Cavalier being a good choice if you want a horse (or if you want to skip the horse and go finesse if you go Daring Champion).

Personally, I'd go Cavalier (Daring Champion)//Magus (Kensai) grabbing Dervish Dance and going Dex-based, with enough Str to get Power Attack and enough Cha that Extra Panache at 5th-6th will give me a respectable pool.

Sohei/Cavalier will also definitely work, but I feel high Wisdom and Lawful alignment (particularly the latter) don't reflect Drogo especially well.

Liberty's Edge

BretI wrote:
The people who do it are also mechanically penalized. It is a matter of where those penalties appear.

For good dump stats chosen properly? No, not really.

BretI wrote:
Having a 7 Charisma (-2 modifier) may be alright for many warriors, but don't expect NPCs to listen very much if you try to solve things with diplomacy. The halfling bard is likely more intimidating than you.

There are several Traits and Class Features that can make such things Wis or Int based, and even if you lack those, this is only relevant if you were gonna be any good at all at those skills anyway. The difference between a +0 and a -2 is pretty meaningless most of the time, especially if there's someone in the party with a +15.

BretI wrote:
Having a 7 Strength puts a big limit on how much you can carry. You can get around this with a Pack Mule assuming you have Handle Animal skill. You better be tracking your encumbrance. Your CMD is going to be horrible, especially if you are an arcanist, sorcerer, witch or wizard. You also better watch out for any swim or climb checks.

Meh. Swim and Climb will be fine if they're Class skills, and if they aren't, you're probably a Class that gets Fly and Spider Climb and Touch of the Sea and all that sort of thing. Ant Haul and Handy Haversacks make encumbrance a very transient problem as well.

CMD is a bigger issue...but full casters are gonna suck so badly at that anyway that another -2 isn't likely to make much difference.

BretI wrote:
Having a 7 Int means you probably only get 1 skill rank (2 if human) per level. How much this hurts depends on what sort of tasks you generally have to perform on an adventure.

Int is generally a terrible dump stat...if you care about skills. If you're playing a Dwarf Fighter and only gonna have two anyway...dropping that to 1 hurts thematically, but probably not mechanically in any meaningful way.

BretI wrote:
Wis/Con/Dex are used for saving throws. There the primary mechanical penalties are obvious.

Con, you're right (because of hit points), and Dex usually is (because of AC, though a level of Oracle can change that) but Wis has some potential if you're a Class with a Good Save in that (or some ability to add large amounts to it). I can make a starting Bard with Wis 7 and a +3 Will Save pretty casually as a Half-Orc or Half-Elf (or as a human if you grab Iron Will), or an kind of Paladin at all with Wis 7 and a +4 Will Save at second level (+7 if using the tricks mentioned with Bard).

Liberty's Edge

I dunno about anyone else, but to me 'impostor' generally means someone pretending to be someone else (specifically, someone you know).

That's not actually what most spies do, and I'd be much less inclined to let people get a hunch about someone who they've just met and seems plausible than the guy who's impersonating their friend Joe.

Which isn't to say that hunches aren't or shouldn't be useful, but I wouldn't allow one to spot a well-entrenched spy. That guy's not nervous, and from his perspective nothing is wrong.

Sense Motive is about reading body language and understanding human nature, and I wouldn't allow a hunch in circumstances where those don't help (so, I'd let you get a hunch to spot the nervous guy infiltrating a party for the first time...but not the guy who infiltrates a party every week). Now, assassination, the assassin is always gonna be nervous or excited to some degree, so a hunch could spot them (as 'something off' anyway)...but standard spying from a professional? Nah.

Liberty's Edge

Looks solid. I might be inclined to drop Wis to 8 and raise Int to 13 or something like that since Int 13 is actually potentially useful, while Wis 9 isn't (or go whole-hog, drop Wis to 7 and raise Str to 18).

Sacred Tattoo is debatably a bad call since it doesn't stack with Luck, but I'd argue it's still awesome.

Fate's Favored is amazing, and by far the best of those Traits (all of which I believe you need weird books for).

In terms of spells...I'd really grab CLW. Might be valid to wait for level 2, but having your own healing available is great in PFS (where you can't necessarily rely on anyone else).

In terms of equipment, I don't think composite crossbows exist...I assume a typo. Also, I'd argue that the extra AC from a Chain Shirt is worth the extra armor check penalty.

Liberty's Edge

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IME, for most characters a 16 in your primary score is necessary, an 18 is desirable, and unless you're rolling for stats a 20 is completely unnecessary and costs more than it gains you.

Now, primary spellcasters who actually rely on their spell save DCs (so Witches and Wizards, but not most Clerics, for example) are an exception to the above and almost need an 18, while really desiring a 20.

As for stat-dumping, it makes flatly more effective characters, and people who don't do it are thus mechanically penalized. If you want to discourage stat-dumping, make rules to do so, don't just say it's bad.

For example, I give 25 point-buy, but with a cap of 16 and a minimum of 8 before racial mods, and only one stat below 10 (again, before racial mods). This encourages a bit more broad-based stats, helping MAD characters a bit and restraining SAD ones similarly. It allows a little stat dumping, but not a whole lot (one stat to 8), and I allow characters to use either Cha or Wis on Will saves which helps keep any one stat from getting dumped too much. I highly recommend something similar for people looking to actually help solve this problem.

Liberty's Edge

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What the removal of 5-foot steps from enemies really does is solve the 'but people just move away from me, so I never get a full attack while flanking' problem. Which is excellent for the Rogue's combat-usefulness. Any screwing over of spellcasters is incidental (if amusing).

Liberty's Edge

Charon's Little Helper wrote:
Nefreet wrote:
Charon's Little Helper wrote:
a mild nerf to unarmed Brawlers & Sohei.
A Sohei should be unaffected by this. Unless I'm missing something.
It's because they can't put Brawling on a Mithril Breastplate. It lowers their AC by two points if they still want Brawling if they're a strength build, one point of AC for a dex build.

Elven Chain and Celestial Armor still allow Brawling, since those are actually light armor for all purposes. Elven Chain is admittedly a point of AC behind, but Celestial Armor is great, if expensive.

Liberty's Edge

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Well, conceptually (and their mechanics back this), Hunters are by far the most pet-focused Class in the game with the exception of Summoners, and are generally more inclined to personally back up their pet in combat.

They're for if your concept isn't 'a guy who happens to have a pet' but instead, a pair of integrally linked characters, one humanoid and one one animal.

Mechanically, they also make excellent use of Teamwork Feats and their ability to use the Ranger spell list on a 6-level caster to be rather frightening melee combatants (or pretty solid archers), while their animal companion's skirmisher tricks (and Evolutions if you go Primal Companion, which you should) make it notably more effective than others of its kind possessed by other classes.

Liberty's Edge

QuidEst wrote:
Lord Fyre wrote:

Actually, does the Unchained Summoner invalidate all the existing archetypes?

(Once could ask the same question for the Barbarian, Monk, & Rogue.)

Monk is the only one incompatible with existing archetypes.

Though, in fairness, it sounds like Barbarian Archetypes that actually change the Rage stat-mods may also be in trouble compatability-wise (that's only Urban Barbarian and Savage Technologist, but still worth noting).

Liberty's Edge

Cuup wrote:
How is Unchained handling preexisting archetypes for the altered classes?

I don't have the book, but from people's descriptions, almost all Barbarian Archetypes should work (those that alter what stats Rage gives bonuses to might be problematic), all Rogue and Summoner Archetypes should work, and almost no Monk archetypes work (as Monk gets the most profound redesign of the Class itself...Summoner is probably an equally large change, but that's almost all to their Eidolon and spell list).

Liberty's Edge

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I once had a player successfully kill a Mature Adult Black Dragon with Ray of Frost.

The whole party fought it (within a couple of rounds of killing its children), and managed to get it down into the single digit hit points...but were all unconscious save the Wizard, and the poor illusionist Wizard had no offensive spells left of any sort...but did have defensive spells up and just barely managed to kill the creature with a few Rays of Frost. It was pretty awesome.

Liberty's Edge

IMO, deciding on what is a key class is more art than science, and should vary by the specific creature.

For example, anyone who makes a Succubus Antipaladin and doesn't count Antipaladin as a key class, RAW be damned, is doing it wrong.

So...like all other Classes, this should vary by specific creature. It's particularly worth noting that Monk is probably usually non-key due to its focus on unarmed attacks, which are incompatible with most monsters natural or spell-based offenses (and thus lack the synergy that makes a Class key...Feral Combat Training can help with that, but unless the monster has one big attack, not enough to make it key), and it doesn't sound like Unchained has effected that reliance much at all.

Still, either version is likely Key for, say, a Stone Giant or Ogre.

Liberty's Edge

Rynjin wrote:
Joe Hex wrote:
Eltacolibre wrote:
The same way I explain Bard magic...it just happens.

Forget magic knuckles. Regardless of how they do it, what the Brawlers do, is just-plain-cool. The Bard, IMO, is just-plain-silly. I've made peace with the fact they are going nowhere- they are an iconic part of the game. But, as a DM, I make sure they are the first class that get's smacked. I know I'm being a dick...but, bad poetry, and dancing during combat deserves a bloody nose.

But nothing about the class requires any of that.

Yeah, battlefield oration, Spiderman-style mocking the opposition, and war-chants are all quite a bit more common IME than anything in the vein of 'bad poetry'.

Liberty's Edge

Zwordsman wrote:


Mithral specifies it counts as lower level for "Most mithral armors are one category lighter than normal for purposes of movement and other limitations"

Brawling sounds like it should work fine with it. Brawler has a limitation for light armour only, that is a limiation.
obviously not what the mithral was written in mind with (as core) but, it looks like it was written so open ended specifically for all the later effects like this one.

Eh...by that logic, Light Armor Proficiency should work with it, too, since Proficiencies and the need for them are a limitation, too. And yet, that pretty explicitly doesn't work.

If you need Medium Armor Proficiency to wear it without penalty, I don't think you can put 'light armor only' enhancements on it. Elven Chain and Celestial Armor really are light armor in all ways, but a Mithral Breastplate just isn't.

Liberty's Edge

That would not work, no. It's not light armor, it just counts as it for some specific purposes.

Celestial Armor, however, would qualify, since it's actually and explicitly light armor.

Liberty's Edge

Doomed Hero wrote:


Don't reduce HP.

Just play E6

This. Or use another system, which operates differently.

Pathfinder is designed to have escalating HP with level in a profound systemic way. E6 (or E7-8), which involves stopping leveling at level 6 (or 7-8) manages to work around this fact (by not having you level per se past a certain point), but actually trying to change it either involves rebuilding the game from the ground up or the game becoming vastly more lethal at higher levels (as attacks become far more likely to kill outright, since damage increases already outstrip HP at higher levels a lot of the time).

So...yeah, I wouldn't do this precise thing, I'd try something else to get the effect you're looking for. To reiterate, probably either E6 or a different system entirely.

Liberty's Edge

Missing_Aria wrote:
For the sake of argument on Slueth's behalf I will say that it is absolutely the best archetype you can take if you want to be a PFS skill god:

I'd strongly disagree with this.

Sleuth's Luck's okay, but no substitute for Extracts.

Extracts can give you Swim and Fly speeds (and thus avoid needing Swim or Climb entirely), +30 foot movement, up to +20 to several of the best skills (Perception and Stealth leap immediately to mind), +1/2 level on all Disable Device checks...and that's all off the top of my head and all by 7th level at the latest (most is by 4th level). The only thing they don't get is Evasion...and even then, Protection from Energy can serve many of the same functions.

Add in how nice Empiricist is for a skill monkey and, well, Sleuth is left utterly in the dust as a skill-monkey.

Liberty's Edge

Official Answer to this question in Golarion found here.

To quote it:

James Jacobs wrote:
An orc raised in a non-evil, non-chaotic society is not "hard-wired" to be evil.

So...yeah.

Additionally, given canonical non-Evil vampires and demons in Golarion, applies even to them (though it's noted as much harder for Undead or alignment-subtype Outsiders to not be Evil).

There isn't, and probably can't be, an official world-neutral answer, given that this sorta thing will vary from world to world...but I like and prefer the implications of anyone being able to be Good, so I pretty much always go with the one used in Golarion.

Liberty's Edge

Lighting discussions aside, I'm just popping in to note that I'm really pleased that we finally got an answer to this, and grateful to the FAQ team for posting it.

It's not the answer I was hoping for, but really, that's much less important than having one at all.

Liberty's Edge

GeneMemeScene wrote:
Slashing Grace also lets you treat the weapon you use as piercing, so the difference between Rapier with Fencing Grace and Cutlass with Slashing Grace is the Rapier has a +2 against disarm while the Cutlass can get through DR/slashing. Both can beat DR/piercing.

This is incorrect. To quote:

Slashing Grace wrote:
...you can treat it as a one-handed piercing melee weapon for all feats and class abilities that require such a weapon...

Emphasis mine. So...it only counts as piercing for Feats and Class Abilities. Nothing else.

Liberty's Edge

Avoron wrote:
Deadmanwalking, I think the idea is for the character to not be dependent upon specific gear, so that if you gave them, so that "if they had level appropriate gear could fight against most threats reasonably well," even without any specific magic item.

That's not precisely what was said or how people were answering it. So...yeah, clarifying the intent was what I was requesting, really.

Liberty's Edge

Well, what stats and build are you aiming for?

Still, the most common use of Traits (extra Class Skills) is mostly superfluous on an Investigator. You can get a Save Bonus or an Initiative bonus, but you have a third Trait for one of those already, if you like.

Liberty's Edge

Summoner.

Master Summoner, or Synthesist with a 4 level dip in Oath of Vengeance Paladin are also valid options, if you like.

Also, the 'no non-magical gear' thing really screws this hypothetical in terms of usefulness for what you say you want. A character built to not have any magical gear is exactly the kind of 'niche' build you're complaining about...only worse than many of them, since it's less likely. Especially built at 20th level, since that results in a lot of builds that are...less than spectacular at low levels.

Now, the same hypothetical with no items not in the corebook instead of none at all...that's a lot more viable to determine what you seem to want to determine.

Liberty's Edge

N. Jolly wrote:
Are you reading it on a different device or something? I ask because in my doc, there's a line break there which is why I didn't include a space. I threw one in because I could fit it though.

I'm just following the link. So...I really dunno.

N. Jolly wrote:
And for the Inquis, the problem is that their weapon selection almost forces a ranged character, which is where I thought their combat styles were limited.

As Lemmy notes, they get their deity's Favored Weapon, too. This makes them as limited in melee options as a Cleric, but better at range.

N. Jolly wrote:
Let me know if you can think of a better 'problem' with the class though.

Like Magi, they can burn through resources really quick if you aren't careful. Bane is wonderful, but very limited and you get fewer Judgments a day than there are fights for much of your career. Spells help with this, but unlike Magus, take up turns you could be fighting.

Obviously, you'd need to sum that up in a slightly shorter format...

Liberty's Edge

cnetarian wrote:
In a PF style fantasy world the most powerful people on the battlefield are armor lacking magic users. This means all the logic that rapiers were the result of armor wearers no longer controlling the battlefield would have applied earlier in the evolution of weaponry in a fantasy world, resulting in rapiers developing in tandem with greatswords instead of sequentially.

This is an excellent explanation, actually. :)

It's not universally true, but it's common enough for weapons to be made for the situation.

Liberty's Edge

The thing people seem to be forgetting here is that level is based purely on accomplishment, not birth or status.

Historically, most peasant revolts failed rather definitively unless they had a competent and charismatic leader of some sort, as they fell apart completely due to lack of coordination. In the world of Pathfinder that leader simply needs to be high level to boot...and even that only eventually, with leading a revolt being a great way to rise in level.

Liberty's Edge

Student of Philosophy effectively allows Int on both Bluff (for everything but feinting) and (in combination with Empiricist) all Diplomacy. Take that.

For your other Trait, as Some Other Guy notes an initiative or Save booster is always solid. While Armor Expert can be handy and Fate's Favored is good if you ever get Luck bonuses. Inspired is a solid choice, too.

Liberty's Edge

Very nice. I approve this immensely.

Though I'd put an extra line between Dex and Con, to make them match the rest. It looks slightly off otherwise.

I also see two minor issues on specific classes:

1. You should note that Hunter animal companions are by far the most badass animal companions. That's an important part of why you might want to play a Hunter.

2. What do you mean that Inquisitor lacks options in combat? I've never found that to be the case.

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N. Jolly wrote:
Edit: Before this I never really read over the Hunter, now that I am I'm not sure why it exist.

It's surprisingly solid in several subtle ways.

The ability to use the Ranger list as a 6th level caster is great, for example. Lead Blades and Resist Energy as a level 1 character is very nice to have.

Skirmisher Tricks being available to their companion is also awesome, and the Teamwork Feat synergy is brutal. Pack Flanking allows Outflank, Paired Opportunists, and Broken Wing Gambit to all stack. By 9th level you can have all that automatically with the only price being the purchase of Combat Expertise.

Heck, as early as level 3, we're talking Pack Flanking, Power Attack, Outflank, and the Skirmisher Trick Aiding Attack from your animal Companion you can manage something like +10 to hit for 2d6+9 damage as long as you and your companion are adjacent.

It falls behind Druid at higher levels, as do almost all 6-level casters behind their 9-level brethren, but it's very solid in its own way.

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Play a Gunslinger.

Take, as your Traits, Student of Philosophy and Barroom Talespinner (the latter from the Skull and Shackles Trait list).

Don't bother with Charisma (in fact, you can dump it if you like), just raise your Int to 12-14. Take Diplomacy as one of your skills, and maybe Bluff as another.

There, you're now as charming as you really need to be.

Liberty's Edge

I'd definitely put Skald in Warrior. It's only got 4+Int skills, after all (and without a class focus on Int). You could argue Bardic Knowledge and Versatile Performance make them Specialists but I don't know if that's quite enough.

Magus and Warpriest are definitely Warrior classes as well.

Hunter, I might throw in Warrior too. They have 6+Int skills but are even less good with them than Rangers (and way less than Slayers). If Ranger's in Warrrior, Hunter definitely should be. If Ranger's in Specialist it's a harder decision.

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kestral287 wrote:
If you're locked out of early entry it might be worthwhile, but otherwise... not really, even if you had the SLA, because the SLA only saves them one level instead of the Wizard's four (here's looking at you, Eldritch Blade).

This is true. Like I said, it's not worth skipping early entry. But with a racial SLA or in a game forbidding it...

kestral287 wrote:
Admittedly the Blade Adept could make for a decent gestalt gish, but for an EK it just takes too long and doesn't offer enough.

Arcane Accuracy alone is very nice.

kestral287 wrote:
No, it's your Arcanist caster level. Whenever a class feature talks about a caster level, assume it's referring to its own.

Huh? Eldritch Blade does almost precisely this.

Liberty's Edge

JiCi wrote:
christos gurd wrote:
Isn't the point of the arcanist blade adept to go into eldritch knight?
You still need at least one level in a suitable martial class because the PrC requires you to be proficient in all martial weapons; the blade adept only grants you one proficiency.

True. That's true of everyone, though.

kestral287 wrote:

Except that it works better with a Scryer Wizard.

Because everybody knows that the guy hunched over a crystal ball is really an /awesome/ swordsman.

As mentioned, that has some thematic coolness to it, actually (the Alex Verus novels are indeed an excellent example of this...and the Scryer keeps Forewarned, which is the thematic one, it only loses Diviner's Fortune).

And yeah, you don't get early entry, sans race anyway, but it's solid as non early entry builds go. Which is admittedly mostly at high levels, but still potentially fun. It's very good if your GM isn't allowing early entry.

Blakmane wrote:
I'm not seeing it. What does the archetype have over a standard diviner -> EK build? It is a spell level behind and gains... The black blade, which is of dubious benefit anyway. I guess it is probably better in low WBL games?

The ability to burn Feats on Magus Arcana (via Extra Arcane Exploit). Several of those are quite worth it. The Black Blade's a pretty cool thing to get as well.

Not worth giving up early entry, but if you have a racial SLA or other method of early entry, or early entry is disallowed, it's solid.

Liberty's Edge

christos gurd wrote:
Isn't the point of the arcanist blade adept to go into eldritch knight?

Yep. It works well, too. At least in theory.

Liberty's Edge

Giving up Brawling for Medium Armor is trading +2 each to hit and damage for a max +2 AC (I guess +3 at some GP amounts). That's worse than Combat Expertise, and a bad trade.

And it's not like I'm suggesting not putting your level up points into Str or something. Starting with 18 and going up from there is very reasonable.

Liberty's Edge

Good Drow are absolutely possible. Hell, there's a canonical CN Drow in Second Darkness. Plus, Shensen, one of the characters in the NPC Guide, was born a Drow. She got reincarnated by a Druid, but that doesn't change alignment, and she's CG.

So...yeah, this can happen. It hasn't happened in Golarion much as of yet, but it can.

Liberty's Edge

Enforcer combined with the Blade of Mercy Trait leads into that pretty well. And is pretty cool.

I dunno about the other Feat...maybe go Dodge or Toughness and retrain it at 3rd?

Liberty's Edge

If you want to, go for it. It works best as a Dex-based Barbarian (for stat synergy) or a Bloodrager (since you need decent Charisma to make it work anyway).

It's not preisely optimal, but rage cycling makes it a very valid build.

And lemeres, you need Empathy at level 1 to make it work since otherwise you can't get Rage's bonuses. At all.

Liberty's Edge

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Oncoming_Storm wrote:
To any potential new Pathfinder players who happened to come across this thread, I'm sorry. We're usually pretty cool people.

In the same vein:

This thread is satire, folks. Please by all the gods don't take it seriously.

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