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Mark, while you're here, how does Weapon Focus (and similar feats) work with Kinetic Blade?
Do I have to pick WF: Kinetic Blade, WF: Kinetic Blast or WF: Kinetic Whip separately? Or could I just grab WF: Kinetic Blast and the bonus transfers over to the blade attack?
So I was looking at the Kinetist in general and Burn specifically, and I was wondering how burn would interact with damage reduction, specifically an invulnerable rager's damage reduction which gives non-lethal DR.
"A kineticist incapable of suffering nonlethal damage cannot accept burn"
Well, I was thinking more along the lines of Minecraft / Yoggscast. The Move Earth talent letting you move literal cubes of the world around kinda inspired the character.
I mean, who the hell do you think I am?
And as a final edit I leave you with this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hFL7sn4dy-4
1 Nonlethal / Level per Burn
Total Burn = Con Mod + 3
I've decided to give a dedicated melee build a try just to see how this works out. It looks like damage recistances are the biggest obstacle this buld would face, so I'll be going with a "Metal" build down the road to combat this. I present you with:
Simon the Diggy Diggy Geokinetic
Element: Earth (Earth Blast)
Talents / Class Features:
HP: 33 (30 Effective)
HP: 53 (48 Effective)
So for the first 5 levels I'm basiclly playing a switch-hitting Fighter or Ranger. I benefit from only having to worry about 2 Attribute Scores and could min-max to a greater extent if I wwant to. I am finding the lack of utility options kind of dull though. This will get a bit better as I level, and infact I'm planning on grabbing Move Earth at level 6 to keep the Minecraft theme going on. With that ability and the right Craft skill I don't see why I couldn't be building a really nice fortress for my party in fact.
Feedback wise, I really want 4 skills per level baseline. I'm also finding the list of Talents to choose during the first few levels to be a bit dull. I'd like to see 1-2 utility options per element and a couple of universal talents to choose from. I think there's plenty of 0th or 1st level spells we could mine for basic options.
I have a rules question to ask, as it'll affect all Kinetic Blade builds. Do feats / abilties / ect that affect Kinetic Blast transfer to Kinetic Blade? For example, would I need to pick up Weapon Focus: Kinetic Blast or Weapon Focus: Kinetic Blade at level 5 with this build?
Btw, I'm going to plan out some party based test scenarios this weekend with Simon here. I'm thinking a party consiting of an Investigator, an Oradin and a Bard might be fun to play with.
I'm assuming feats like Slashing/Fencing Grace, Dervish Dance or Piranha Strike will work with with Kinetic Blade. Will Kinetic Fist receive some support through a monk-like archetype? That'd be really awesome.
Could we clarify that Kinetic Blade/Fist/Whip are free actions made a part of an attack action?
I'm assuming that Kinetic Fist attacks would benefit from an Amulet of Might Fists. With that in mind, how about a custom Kineticist item with the some cost progression that lets you boost your offensive abilities?
Finally, I'd really like to see the 'Other Wild Talents' section expanded on. The class has plenty of offensive options but could use a few more utility abilities. Something that would be really cool would be a Prestidigitation equivalent for Kineticists.
I'd go with an alchemist of some kind. This nets you buff & utility Extracts, Mutagens to stack with your Rage, additional skill utility and a better Reflex save. You also have the choice of running with bombs or sneak attack dice.
Overall a nice offensive boost and it nets you additional utility options.
Boon companion is 3 levels. It makes you count as a 4th level druid if you take with at 4th level as Ranger which you can't as you don't get a feat a 4th level. I think that's why people think it gives you 4 levels, they forget that 4th level is 1 druid level when they grab the feat at 5th level.
Um... that's not how the feat works. It makes the abilities of your companion/familiar count as if you were 4 levels higher, to a maximum effective Druid level equal to your Character level. The boost can vary from 1-4, depending on how many Druid levels you lack.
You're starting at level 3, so use your Magus Arcana to pick up a Familiar. That lets you free up your class choices quite well.
Swashbuckler (Inspired Blade) - You gain Weapon Finesse and Weapon Focus with a Rapier, use Int and Cha for calculating your Panache Pool and can pick up the Fencing Grace feat for Dex to Damage right at level 1. Full BAB, lots of bonus damage and a large number of situational abilities you'll actually have a large enough Panache pool to use. This is a very strong option. Oh, at level 11 you can spend a Panache point to add your Int as an Insight bonus on an attack roll.
Alchemist - Bombs if you want to switch hit, Vivisectionist if you just want to deal tons of damage. The Mutagen & Extracts can be used for buffs, letting you use your spells purely for damage.
Investigator - Less extra damage than an Alchemist, but you'll rule those skill checks. The damage options available to an Alchemist are still rather nice. Empiricist grants you some nice resistance to Illusion magic.
Slayer - Full BAB, some sneak attack and tons of bonus damage sources. Decent Int synergy too.
I've been playing a combat focused in a home-brew game and it has worked out really well. The general role you'll play is striker, but with Extracts and Mutagens you'll wind up being quite tough at higher levels.
I highly recommend races which grant additional weapon proficiencies. Both Elf and Half Elf are great choices, though I prefer Half-Elf with a Strength build.
Getting Kirin Strike by level 9 is a great way to boost your damage significantly, and is also quite thematic. Note that his requires Improved Unarmed Strike by level 5 and then Kirin Style at level 7. Taking round 1 of combat to drink a buff, activate your Studied Combat and then make your Kirin Style roll will suddenly turn you into a powerhouse.
I prefer Strength builds over Dexterity builds as you don't have to pay a feat tax. Strength builds will have higher damage, but will be a bit more fragile. Dexterity builds can wind up with rather nice AC scores early on along with nice Acrobatics checks if you're going to move in combat a lot.
If you do go with a Dexterity build, a 1 level dip into Swashbuckler can get you Dex to Damage at first level. Humans Swashbuclkers can pick up Weapon Focus and Slashing Grace at first level. Alternatively, the Inspired Blade archetype grants you Weapon Finesse (Rapier) and Weapon Focus (Rapier) right at first level, allowing you to pick up Fencing Grace at first level for your Dex to Damage.
Actually, that might make me rethink my Strength preference. The Inspired Blade gets a Panache pool made up of his Cha Mod (minimum 1) and his Int Mod (Minimum 1). This means you could dump your Charisma to 7 and still wind up with a nice sized Panache pool. This build delays Studied Combat until level 5 for a huge boost in combat potential...
Well I'm glad I still have a level 1 Tiefling who's only seen one session of play. That means I can rebuild him if I ever want to use him in the future.
Personally, I'd love to play my Kitsune Dawnflower Dervish bard that focuses on using the Realistic Likeness feat. The home brew game I was running her in was canceled due to scheduling conflicts but the character was great.
The Grenadier Alchemist can get off one shot that adds bomb damage to the attack. This gives bonus elemental damage, Int damage and possibly some status debuffs. You also get some splash damage on additional enemies. Probably still less damage than optimized Longbow builds, but it isn't a bad build overall.
Look into playing a race that gets bonus bomb damage as a favored class bonus (Half-Orc being the easiest option). Popping a Targeted Bomb Admixture will double the Int damage on single target fights. Since you only need Point Blank Shot, Precise Shot and Deadly Aim from the ranged feats you can also go down the Improved Unarmed Damage > Kirin Style > Kirin Strike damage for another x2 Int damage. Pop on Bracers of Falcon's Aim and you'll have a 19-20 x3 crit range.
I believe the Distance property only doubles the base range. Distance + Long Shot nets you a 50ft range, not a 60ft Range. Some of those archetype bonuses actually increase the base range though, so a doubled pistol would be 60ft with one of those.
A dip into Spellslinger would get you Distance at early levels, though with the Alchemist being a fairly tough class I think you may be over emphasizing staying far back. Just remember that it's 1 min per spell slot, so you'll want to pick up some Pearls of Power to feed this.
Siege Gunner for a few uses of Gunslinger's Dodge is ok but not great. Personally, I'd go Gun Scavenger.
So Explosive Missile is poorly written and really needs an Eratta, but note that it specifies "one-handed firearm bullet". There is no such thing as separate bullets for one-handed or two-handed firearms in PF, so you could probably RAW your way into using a Musket with the ability. RAI, you're stuck with pistol of some sort.
LessPopMoreFizz, the first thing you should do is establish how common guns are (according to the rules scale) as that will determine your course of action. For instance, under the Common Place Guns rules firearms are Martial weapons and you could be proficient with one using the Martial Weapon Proficiency you gain at your first level of Grenadier. I'm going to assume you're working under Emerging Guns rules as that seems to be the most commonly used rule set.
In this case, I highly recommend a single level of gunslinger followed by pure Alchemist. This nets you a bit of bonus HP, a boost to your saves, a boost to your BAB and the ability to use guns with relative ease. You'll gain Explosive Missile at level 5.
You are restricted to a one-handed gun, so start off with a Pistol. Plan to craft a Revolver as soon as you can (2 day process, 2k gold cost) as you'll resolve touch attacks within 100 feet at that point.
Range Increments can be increased as follows:
Since you don't want to play a Gnome, I suggest you go Half-Orc with your first level in Gun Scavenger. Unless you have a generous Point Buy I wouldn't bother with a high Wisdom score. Instead plan on having just 1 Grit point until you reach level 5-7 at which point the Extra Grit feat is a decent option.
Gun Scavenger can be pretty fun, as you have the option of swapping between your Pistol having extra range or having the Scatter property. That can be pretty nice at early levels.
There are very few abilities and very few builds that provide traditional MMO tanking mechanics. What you need to look for are ways to be the biggest threat, attracting the notice of enemies.
The first step is make sure you do a large amount of damage. The idea is that you're the most threatening target so the enemies will focus on you first. As others have suggested, spells that increase your physical size are a good idea too (both for the damage boost and the intimidation factor).
I would also suggest looking at the Sacred Shield archetype. This replaces Smite Evil with an ability that halves the damage nearby allies take from big targets. Not only are you actually protecting allies, you're making yourself the most appealing target to your enemy.
I'm playing in a Final Fantasy themed game and need to find some miniatures that will work for an Adamantoise as an Animal Companion. I've been looking at a ton of options and it looks like I'll have to do some customization no matter what, but I'm hoping I can find a decent base.
I've been looking at various Anklyosaurus & Glyptodon minis but if you know of a mini you really like please share! I'm looking for Medium & Large sized models.
Vorpaljesus, a Lunar Oracle looks amazing! Lower BAB, but if I pick up the Catfolk Exemplar feat I can use Gift of Claw and Horn to add a Gore Attack. Gore, Bite and Claw x2 seems like a pretty good combo if I go with a Natural attack build.
This nets me a decent AC, 4 attacks per rounds, some healing & buffing spells and an animal companion.
Mount with something other than a Horse would work fine. After all, this is FF so we'd have Chocobos (Axebeak stats?).
Thanks for the ideas guys! I'm looking at various options and should come up with something good.
I'm going to be playing in a new game soon where the party may only be 3 people. The other players are going for a Sorcerer and a Rogue, so I figured I should have a front liner planned out in case we don't pick up any more players. I'm just having a tough time deciding what to pick up.
Campaign Specific Info:
The game will be Final Fantasy themed, set in Spira (FFX). We're using a 15 point buy, but pretty much any source book that's already published is allowed. The only restrictions are to avoid anything that doesn't mesh with the theme of the game.
I'm thinking of playing a Ronso which have the follow racial attributes:
Note: I can pick up Catfolk specific feats & gear with a Ronso.
With the small party, I'm debating whether I should just go for a Barbarian build and just wreck things, or if I should go for a martial character with an animal companion.
I'd appreciate any thoughts y'all have.
So when I built my Bladebound Kensai I was tired of all the Dervish Dance builds, so I went for a Strength-based character. It was a little fragile at first level, but wound up being highly effective.
Human: Str 17, Dex 14, Con 12, Int 16, Wis 10, Cha 7.
That foundation nets you high damage at all levels, and the damage will just keep scaling up. The Nemesis story feat will allow you to pick up both an Extra HP and a 1/4 or an Arcane Point each level. It can also potentially net you another +2 to Strength at some point in the story.
2-Handed Arcane Strike Power Attacks will be quite powerful when you can deliver them and by level 5 you'll be able to add Keen to your sword for free, allowing for a good number of crits.
The first couple of levels will be rough due to your low AC. I recommend buying either potions of Mage Armor or a 10 charge wand of Mage Armor. Picking up Mage Armor through an Arcana at level 6 is recommended.
Early gear purchases should be level 1 Pearls of Power and you should plan on grabbing some level 2 Pearls at higher levels. This gives you quite a lot of spells to cast each day.
Cape of Free Will - Similar to Cloaks of Resistance, but the Will Save is doubled while the item price is increased by about 50%.
Headband of Wisdom +4 - Totals a +2 Will save.
Potion of Heroism - Temporary bonus, but possibly useful in a fight.
A Bladebound Kensai will work just fine with a Strength build and a Katana. I'm playing one right now and it does a great job at dealing damage, while being fragile enough that my GM doesn't complain about me being too powerful.
You're going to have a low AC at first, so some means of gaining Mage Armor is really required. Picking up the spell at level 6 with an arcana is a great idea.
The Dervish Dance Scimitar build is the most optimized build btw, giving you good AC and adequate damage. It's just so common that I find it rather boring.
This is actually the group's second Zelda campaign, and it's been a blast. We've had several dungeon crawls even with the party just at level 4, and just wrapped up a major battle outside of a fort. An army of Darknuts and Stalfos makes for a tough fight.
I'll get the piece ordered (probably 2 of him so I can swap a foot) and see how he turns out. Thanks guys!
Thanks for the suggestions guys, these are pretty good. Ivan's is about the closest to what I'd imagine for the character and a foot replacement should be easy.
I'm really glad I'm not the only person with this idea.
So I'm playing in a Legends of Zelda inspired game, and I over-optimized a bit on my first character. I've swapped him out for a new character who is much more fun and fits the level of optimization of the party better, but I'm really having trouble find a good miniature to even use as a foundation for a mod job.
So, anybody have suggestions for a Gorron Monk, themed after Hulk Hogan? =D
Keep in mind, Gorrons are large, sumo wrestler sized guys that kinda look like they are made out of stone. They also have no females, so they call everybody they meet "Brother". I'm trying to find a bug bulky guy with a face that would be easy to add Hogan's mustache on to.
So the Errata states: "Page 51—In the Pistolero archetype, in the Deeds class feature, in the Up Close and Deadly deed, delete the
Somebody correct me if I'm wrong, but wouldn't that be "This is precision damage and is not multiplied if the attack is a critical hit."
If so this would be a really odd change. The very next sentence specifically refers to "This precision damage" as does the one after that.
Cheating among players should be unacceptable. You're playing a cooperative game and should be able to handle the fact that sometimes you'll fail. If you're not mature enough to handle that fact, then honestly I would suggest playing a different game.
Now I do hold GMs to a slightly different standard. GMs should be rolling behind a screen and should the choice of occasionally fudging their die rolls. Sometimes you're rolling consistently bad and the big boss fight requires that you fake your numbers just to make sure the fight is fun for your players. Sometimes you roll insanely well, but don't want to kill off a character a player is really invested in due to a lucky crit with a Power Attacking Scythe.
The feat is "best" used for giving some blasting options to non-blaster casters, such as the Summoner or Bard. Even then, those classes usually have better options.
For a Sorcerer, you're better of just using your normal blasting spells as their damage will scale higher. This is especially true if you use a Bloodline that boosts your damage further.
I honestly wouldn't focus on combat much at all if you're stuck with those rolls and can't finagle an Agile weapon. Two levels of Paladin would help you with saves and heavier armor, but I wouldn't pick up any more unless your GM decides to allow Archetypes. The Oradin build assumes they'll be available. That being said, definitely go with 4 levels of Oracle to start out with, you'll be much more effective that way.
If you go with Weapon Finesse you'll have to pick up a decent Agile weapon. Note that as a Kitsune you could have profficiency with an Elven Curve Blade at level 4, which is a pretty nice combat option.
You may be better off using spell slots for those occasional times you need to do something offensive though. Up to you.
Healing is going to involve putting Life Link on the entire party and healing damage you take personally. A Wand of Cure Light Wounds is a must buy with your starting cash, you'll burn through it most likely. Drop Life Link and use Channel Energy when your HP gets low.
Personally, I would rather opt for using Disarm against players rather than try to Sunder their weapons. You get the same kind of intent, but without permanent loss of a martial character's main investment.
If you are going to use Sunder, provide a means for eventual restoration or replacement of the destroyed items that doesn't have an impact on WBL.
How about using a coin, that looks like a common silver or gold piece. This would allow the intelligent item to be passed around, until it makes its way into the hands of somebody it wants to dominate. It's a common enough item that nobody is going to think twice about it, and is easy to hide (the party finds a stash of silver coins worth yadda yadda yadda).
I have a few questions before I get started.
1) Are you using a 20 point buy and would you be willing to switch up the stat block? A Str: 13 Dex: 16 Con: 13 Int: 12 Wis: 8 Cha: 16 would work out a bit better, with the your level 4 boost going into Con. An Oradin build really wants more HP to power the Life Link ability, 14 Con is really the minimum.
2) Could you convince your GM to give you a +1 Agile weapon instead? If so, an Agile weapon along with Power Attack would give you decent damage as you level up with only 1 feat invested in offence.
3) Is the no archetype ruling a personal preference or a GM ruling? The Oradin build can really benefit from using archetypes in your Paladin levels.
I think the only really problematic questions on the survey where the ones asking you to compare the classes to other classes. The idea of rating power & effectiveness of one class to all others. It's just really hard to compare something like the swashbuckler to both a Wizard and a Fighter at the same time. The rest of the questions were pretty easy to answer.
The amount of time the developers spent on the forums, actually responding to everybody, was pretty impressive. It's very rare to see that level of interaction from any game company, and it was pretty similar to the kind of interaction I expect out of Blizzard. Well done overall.
I think many of us would have liked additional time to play test the second document. I've got a 5 class play test I'm still working on (Investigator, Warpriest, Shaman, Arcanist and Hunter) but I just didn't have time to get everything typed up and participate in the forum conversations. It might be beneficial to maintain a forum specifically for playtest posts (no discussion, just post your on-going playtests).
I'd like to second Oceanshieldwolf's desire to see more than one developer in each thread. I'm guessing y'all divided up the work a fair bit, but I do think that some of the combativeness that cropped up in some threads could have been lessened with more voices in the discussion. Keeping in mind of course that this is the internet, so somebody is always going to be unhappy.
On the whole though, it was fun and I'm looking forward to buying the book in August. And hey, this'll be one where I actually buy the hardcover ;).
+1 on this comment.
Besides, if the issue is allowing a Warpriest to effectively use Diplomacy then that could easily be handled with a trait similar to Bruising Intellect.
Since this is the last opportunity, I'd like to repeat my comments.
1) I really like the core mechanics for the class. Spirits feel like they're similar to parent class features but are different enough to be something new and interesting.
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Good one! I've updated all my surveys but I just want to say I absolutely can't wait to play an Investigator. I think this is one of the better built classes at the moment and really just needs some additional polish. August can't come soon enough.
I don't really buy the idea of balancing a class with MADness. That was attempted with the Monk class back in 3.5 and it rendered the class largely ineffective. The base game mechanics just don't treat a class that has to spread points out so much well. The class needs a dump stat, and since it is designed as a martial class that really only leaves us with Wisdom or Charisma as options.
You see Charisma as the most common dump stat largely because it is a relatively "weak" stat on its own. If the "min 1" rule applies to fervor per day, I already see many Warpriests dumping Cha and ignoring their Channel Energy ability anyway.
These are very valid points. Low HP coupled with a d8 hit die is actually the biggest weakness of the class when engaged in melee and isn't something to take likely.
I ran a bunch of level 9 builds with full WBL, and while the Str builds do more damage (particularly the Kirin Strike build), the Dex builds aren't terribly far behind so long as you can get Dex to damage. Really either build is viable and the one should use comes down to party makeup and personal preference.
So I promised some Lvl 1 builds, here you go:
Str: 16 Dex: 14 Con: 14 Int: 15 Wis: 10 Cha: 8
HP: 11 AC: 17
Traits: Bruising Intellect, Threatening Defender
Feats: Combat Expertise, Improved Trip
Suggested Extracts: Shield, Enlarge Person
Gear: Longspear, Lamellar (Leather) Armor
Melee: +3 1d8+4 x3, +5 CMB on Trips
Tactics: Hang back with your reach weapon for easier flanking and trip enemies whenever possible. Use Shield Exracts to boost your AC to 21 or Enlarge Humanoid to make sure your trip attempts land.
Race: Half Elf
Alternate Racial Trait: Ancestral Arms (Greatsword)
Str: 16 Dex: 14 Con: 14 Int: 15 Wis: 10 Cha: 8
HP: 11 AC: 16
Traits: Reactionary, Failed Apprentice
Feats: Improved Unarmed Strike
Suggested Extracts: Shield, Cure Light Wounds
Gear: Greatsword, Lamellar (Leather) Armor
Melee: +3 2d6+4 19-20 x2
Tactics: Drink the Shield Extract ASAP and just charge in with your +5 attack bonus and an 18 AC.
Str: 14 Dex: 18 Con: 12 Int: 14 Wis: 12 Cha: 7
HP: 10 AC: 18
Traits: Reactionary, Bruising Intellect
Feats: Weapon Finesse
Suggested Extracts: Shock Shield
Gear: Rapier, Chain Shirt
Melee: +4 1d6+2 18-20 x2
Tactics: You'll be dealing less damage than a Strength build, by you've got a better chance to hit and crit along with a very nice AC bonus. I like using Shock Shield with this build as a way to deliver some AOE damage.
Either of these three builds will work in combat at first level and you won't be terrible. Like most 3/4 BAB classes you'll want a flanking partner and you can't expect to be doing the same damage as a Fighter or a Barbarian. And to be honest, you'll probably be a little bit behind the Rogue at levels 1 and 2.
Starting at level 3 though, you can start abusing Mutagens and shouldn't be lagging behind anybody. At level 4 you'll have 2 Extracts a day to boost your Dex or Str along with that Mutagen and with Studied Strike will have the attack bonuses of a full BAB class.
Considering the other class features that you gain, I think the class on the whole works well. My primary gripes are that the class is rather feat starved, particularly so at the early levels.
I described a bunch several pages back, but sure I'll post some details tonight. As a quick overview though here's how the two I focused on:
Two-Handed Fighting: Go for 16 Str and distribute your other stats how you wish. Fight with a two-handed weapon for +3 attack bonus and weapon dice +4 at first level. Base AC in the 15-16 range, use Shield Extracts to boost it. At level 2 you'll want a Masterwork weapon, you have have a +5 attack bonus.
Dervish Dancing: At least a 13 Str for Power Attack and as much Dex as you can afford. Damage is low during early levels but your AC is much higher and your equipment costs are cheaper. At level 3 you're in good shape even without extracts or a mutagen. A Dex boosting mutagen is great at this point though.
I have done a lot of testing with a ton of builds, and I haven't had any serious problems with the Inquisitor at levels 1-3. The class winds up with similar stat allocations as a Magus, with the same options. You can go with a Strength build and contribute adequate to good damage for 3 levels or go with a Dex build where your damage will be reduced until level 3, but your defenses will be higher. From level 4 and on you have no problems.
Yes it could be a little better, and probably should be if this class was intended for a pure combat role. However, the core concept of the class is actually as a support role with a strong focus on out of combat utility. The fact that the class can perform adequately in combat while stealing the show outside of it makes this a pretty strong class in my opinion.
I actually rather like this idea. My main comments would be that the archetype should grant proficiency with Armored Coats (Combat Trench Coat) and that an extra Grit point every 2nd level would be way more Grit than most Grit-based classes get naturally.
So for the first 3 levels, sure a Vivisectionist is stronger than an Investigator. I'm just saying the Investigator isn't absolutely hopeless. Frankly, I think it works better for the first couple of levels than a Dex-based Swashbuckler currently does =P.
Also Excaliburproxy, you should have at least 2 first level extracts per day at first level, and gain an additional extract at levels 2 and 3. If you want to use those in combat plan on using 1 per fight and they can stretch out the day. You also can get a mutagen at third level which can last for multiple fights. That's significantly more than just one combat a day and you should be pretty dominant during the out of combat stuff.
The class does have some early level issues, I just don't think they're absolutely crippling. Now, a few pages back I did make some suggestions that I think should be applied to class that help out those early levels.
1) Start talent progression at level 2
2) Allow selection of the Rogue talents that grant combat oriented feats. This change would also give us some viable options other than Mutagen for our first Talent.
3) Move Studied Combat to level 1 while leaving Studied Strike and the bonus precision damage at level 4. I've recently become ok with this suggested change, mostly because I like the idea of players getting used to the mechanics of Studied Combat at an earlier level.
With smart extract use you're perfectly viable at first level. You need a 16 and your to-hit stat and a flanking buddy for those first two levels is all. That's the same place Bards, Rogues, Clerics and other 3/4 fighters find themselves in. At level 3 you can grab your mutagen for those tough fights. Not as great as a full BAB class at pure melee combat, but you bring a lot more to the table.