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Pathfinder Society Member. 257 posts. 1 review. No lists. No wishlists. 2 Pathfinder Society characters.


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voska66 wrote:
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:
1) Longshot Infusion - +10 Range Increment (untyped), lasts for 1 min / caster level.
2) Distance Weapon - Doubled Range Increment.
3) Experimental Gunsmith Archetype - You can maintain 1 experimental gun with a single innovation (increased range increment). Requires you play a gnome or get a GM exemption.
4) Gun Scavenger Archetype - Every time your fire your gun your Misfire Chance goes up by 1. You can fix a broken gun as a Standard Action, and when you do you add a bonus of your choice (+10 Range Increment).

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.


Hi all,

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:
+2 Str -2 Dex +2 Wis
Darkvision 60
Ferocity
Stubborn
1d4 Bite Attack

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.


The animal domain might be fun. You could ignore optimization and grab another Frog that way.


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.
1: Nemesis, Arcane Strike, Weapon Focus (Katana)
3: Power Attack
5: Furious Focus, Intensified Spell

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.


Excellent. Thanks Ravingdork! I didn't have my book handy when I looked up the feature =).


That's the sentence I would assume should be removed as well, but following the instructions provided skips past that one.


2 people marked this as FAQ candidate. 1 person marked this as a favorite.

So the Errata states: "Page 51—In the Pistolero archetype, in the Deeds class feature, in the Up Close and Deadly deed, delete the
third sentence."

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.


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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.


SlimGauge's answer is correct. You should attack as you normally would attack an enemy.


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.

Feats:
1) Fey Foundling
3) Selective Channel
5) Weapon Finesse OR Extra Channel

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.


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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.


Are you thinking magic or mundane?

On the mundane front, Gunslingers are always a good option.


Arcane Strike bonuses increase with your character level, not caster level.


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 ;).


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Psyren wrote:

The reason I don't want them to be Cha-based is because it shafts Dwarves, who would be far and away the most likely to take this class. In fact, the iconic Warpriest (PrC) from 3.5 was a Dwarf.

They don't need to be charismatic leaders. They are divine weapons - if they inspire others, it should be through their deeds, not their words. That, and it provides a more compelling counterpart to the charismatic Paladin.

Let them be gruff, brutal and effective.

+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.


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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.
2) The hexes have swings in actual utility and don't feel like Witch Hexes at all. These need more work, and some of the traditional Witch options should be integrated into various Spirits.
3) The elemental spirits are kinda dull, and I could really see a single elemental spirit sufficing for this role (similar to the Draconic bloodline). I'd really like to see some Witch Patrons as spirits, and some of these could combine easily with Oracle Mysteries. Ancestors, for instance, springs to mind.
4) I understand the reasons why printing new spell lists would be problematic, but I honestly feel that the Shaman needs one more than the Bloodrager does.


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Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Javaed wrote:
Hey Stephen, want to drop any hints on what the Iconic character will be like? =)
Investigatory ;)

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.


Hey Stephen, want to drop any hints on what the Iconic character will be like? =)


Phosphorus wrote:
Khazadune wrote:
I think we should all post our agreement that the class is spread too thin on attributes and is quite MAD, so fervor should be changed to being focused on Wisdom. Everyone who agrees please post something to say so and we will show how much we agree before this playtest closes and they make their final decisions regarding the class.

Currently, one of the balancing aspects of the class is the MADness. Take it away, and the Warpriest will have to lose something.

Also I see enough characters with 7 charisma, and I wouldn't like the Warpriest to go the same way.

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.


Tels wrote:
graywulfe wrote:
Lord_Malkov wrote:

Dexterity Investigator

Staff Investigator
Martial Artist Investigator
Heavy Investigator

Meanwhile the Dextrous Investigator, you offer, is getting hit less often.

Dexterity is not a trap. Dexterity done right means you get hit less. Sure you do less damage. But by not getting hit you survive longer to do damage.

Lord_Malkov, something to note is that all of your builds were level 12. At level 12, the average High Attack and Low Attack from CR 9 to CR 15 threats is 21/15

Dexterity has an AC of 30
Staff has an AC of 24
Martial Artist has an AC of 22
Heavy has an AC of 25

The average HP for the CR 9 - CR 15 range is 164 with a low of 115 and a high of 220. Out of the above builds, only the Heavy investigator could probably drop something in a single round. Meanwhile, they are getting full attacked in return.

The Martial Artist is screwed when it comes to melee, just about everything is going to hit him pretty easily. The High attack misses only on a 1, while the low attack needs a 7 to hit.

The Staff is hit by the High attack on a 3 and hit by a low attack on a 9.

Heavy is hit by the high attack on a 4 and hit by the low attack on a 10.

Dexterity is hit by the high attack on a 9, and hit by the low attack on a 15. This is the only guy who is likely to withstand more than a couple rounds of combat at this range. Sure, he may not be dropping a monster in two rounds, but he's not being dropped in 2 rounds either.

Mr. Dexterity also has the best saves (in all categories) of the 4 builds you listed. With him having higher AC (meaning he gets hit less) and better saves, he is less likely to be brought down from any of the riders on the hits the other guys will fall too.

I know you're participating in the Swashbuckler thread, so you're aware of how much saves can influence a game. Out of all the builds you posted, I, personally, would take the Dexterity guy.

I understand the party and/or the Investigator could apply...

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:

Maneuver Focus:

Race: Human
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.

AM INVESTIGATOR:

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.

Dex Build:

Race: Elf
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.


bartgroks wrote:
Javaed wrote:

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.

Could you post some of the builds here or elsewhere on the forums? I had no problem with builds until sneak attack was removed but since then I'm struggling as many others seem to be. Would love to see what you came up with. How are you getting decent damage from a dx build at level 3? Piranha strike?

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.


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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.


Excaliburproxy wrote:

Anyways. Proposed Noir archetype:

Replace the normal weapon and armor proficiencies with ONLY leather armor, simple weapons, unarmed strikes (fisticuffs!), saps, and firearms.

The Noir investigator loses one extract of every level (only having extracts from high intelligence when this reduces the number of extracts to zero).

However, she does gain a battered pistol as a level 1 Gunslinger and the point-blank shot feat.

lv 2: replace poison lore with Amateur Gunslinger (with grit going to a maximum of the Noir Investigator's Intelligence instead of wisdom)

Replace poison resistance with "extra grit". At level 2, the investigator starts with two grit points a day (instead of the normal 1 from amateur gunslinger) up to a maximum of her intelligence modifier. Every 2 levels thereafter, the Noir detective increases her starting grit per day by 1 (still up to a maximum of her intelligence modifier though).

At level 4: she gains studied combat and studied strike as normal except they only functions with unarmed strikes and saps.

The precision damage from studied combat AND studied strike applies to firearms as well, but not the accuracy bonus. HOWEVER, she can only maintain a steady enough hand for this when she indulges a vice. A vice can be anything (smoking a pipe, drinking alcohol, or gambling), but must cost the Noir investigator at least 1 gp that day. If she has not indulged her vice that day, then the precision damage still only applies to saps and unarmed strikes.

The Investigator loses Swift alchemy and instead gains the gunsmith feat. If she already has this feat she may choose a grit feat instead.

As an inspiration, the investigator may choose rapid reload or a grit feat.

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.


Heladriell wrote:
Excaliburproxy wrote:

I am operating on this version:

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:

Okay,

So studied combat and studied strike have been weigh on my mind a lot lately. People like the flavor and there seems a general condenses that it does not do enough damage, or at least consistent damage.

Here are my current thoughts on how to change the ability.

Studies strike stays the same (sort of, see below).

Studied combat becomes a move action to activate (with the quick study bumping it down to a swift). You then gain a half your investigator level bonus to melee attack rolls (as it is now) and as precision damage to the target (not multiplied on critical hits). You gain that precision damage even when you make studied strike. In other words there will be some wording that needs to be changed in studied strike to make that clear, because its time does not.

Thoughts?

emboldening is my own

I see, but this is not an official update, it does make it slightly better, while still not making the class viable until level 4.

Studied combat should be 1st level with the damage bonus and whthout the 24h limitation (and still would be missing the "wow!" element).

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.


cuatroespada wrote:
Javaed wrote:
The Strength build can really climb ahead with Kirin Style, but you want to activate it on round 2 instead of round 1. This may not be the strongest style to use though, as in practice you're only likely to get to use it every 3rd round, usually coupled with your Sudden Strike. A Hasted Full-Attack isn't worth giving up, so you've got multiple options competing for that swift action.
what else is regularly competing for that swift action? i feel like i'm missing something...

Studied Combat as a swift action, but it'll last 2-4 rounds.

Kirin Style is a swift action to make a Knowledge check and "identify" the target. This grants you a +2 AC bonus against the target.
Kirin Strike is a swift action to add double your Intelligence bonus as extra damage. It requires that you first identify the target.

So the way the combat style works out, you spend 2 rounds worth of swift actions to gain bonuses in combat against them. On the third round the target should be close to death, so you use your swift action to Kirin Strike at the same time you make your Studied Strike and finish off the target.

On round 4 of combat you pick a new target and repeat the process. Against a really tough critter you can use Kirin Strike on consecutive rounds, saving your Studied Strike for the final round.


I've been playing around with various war priest builds, and I really think the class could benefit from not being tied to Charisma. This class is more MAD than the monk currently, and I keep feeling like I'm being restricted when trying to decide what ability scores to choose.

I would suggest tying Fervor to Wisdom as a good starting point, especially since I don't see myself bothering to channel all that often. In fact, I could live with losing the ability to channel energy.


Heladriell wrote:
Lord_Malkov wrote:
MrSin wrote:
Trout wrote:
Heladriell wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Rynjin wrote:
Wait, I thought there was ALREADY a Talent to reduce Inspiration for attack rolls to a single use instead of two?
There is. I believe the argument is to get rid of that talent or modify it and to make that talent's inspiration cost for attack rolls the default.

Why don't we do this:

Inspired Strike(Ex): When the Investigator hits a target with a melee attack he may spend an inspiration point. If he does so, he adds 1d6 extra damage. This damage increases to 2d6 at 3rd level and adds another d6 every two levels after. If the investigator is attacking with a weapon he's proficient, he may also add his INT bonus.

This would make a damage source balanced with the alchemist's, and give the investigator better usefulness in combat.

I like that!

(I assume the INT bonus doesn't multiply on a crit) I'd like it even more if the extra damage was classified as an insight bonus.
Its not actually that balanced. You'll burn inspiration like crazy and you probably won't be like the alchemist who gets it for free on every attack that qualifies. Not a big fan of putting a limit on a basic and necessary combat function either, especially not with a shared pool for your other abilities that are supposed to allow you to shine.

Also, lets just avoid any more classes that can nova at will during important encounters... this sort of burst attack might be cool for the slayer (who consequently has less sneak attack dice) but Studied Combat is already excellent right where it is.

It is worse than sneak attack overall, particularly when you consider things like Sap Master, Scout Archetype, and High initiative ranged rogues etc... But it fits the class very well, the accuracy bonus helps to deal with the MAD issues, and the static damage is very fair.

You have to remember that Studied Combat is not even remotely as

...

I'm ok with Studied Strike being worse overall damage than Sneak Attack, as the Studied Combat mechanic more than makes up for it. The melee attack bonuses are significant and you're already getting some static damage bonuses. Once the ability becomes a swift action you'll always have these bonuses on your current target and can deal bonus damage every 2-3 turns. That's about as often as most Rogues get to sneak attack in my experience, though Rogues can easily dual-wield for extra attacks and they deal more damage when doing so.

On the whole, I think the abilities are about on par.


cuatroespada wrote:
Javaed wrote:
well clearly you've already assumed the STR build's second attack will always miss, so i see no reason not to do the same for the DEX build. also, if you give the DEX build arcane strike, why wouldn't you give the STR build another feat to add damage? it's like you're being intentionally misleading...

Not so. I probably should have included my feat selection, with the Str build I took Furious Focus but not with the Dex build. The Str build's second attack was at a -7 compared to the first, and honestly it probably had a fair chance of hitting. What was really hurting the Str build was some poor planning on gear selection coupled with not using Kirin Strike correctly. I blame that on trying to think this all out at 2am =P

I've adjusted the gear on both builds so they have the same total on their offensive stats are are able to use the same round 1 buff. The Strength build comes ahead offensively in this situation, but is a bit behind defensively when compared to the Dexterity build.

The Strength build has a bit more flexibility in feat selection, especially during early levels. If you pick up Kirin style you can expect a 3 round sequence on any enemy: 1)Activate Studied Combat, 2)Study your target with Kirin Style and 3)Finish the target with a Studied Kirin Strike combo.

The Dex build has a slower start offensively buy has significantly higher AC. The soonest you'll pick up Power Attack is level 5 and most builds will have trouble using a Style Feat line. You could opt for an Agile weapon instead, but you'll want to use strength extracts and mutagens up till level 7 and then make the switch. This isn't a bad idea, as you wind up with a more survivable character at cost of damage.

Neither build is bad, which I really like. The hardest build to put together is actually a Two-Weapon Fighting build due to the lack of feats. A Rogue is able to manage these builds using talents that grant feats, but none of those are available to the Investigator.


MrSin wrote:
Javaed wrote:
Good point on using a reach weapon for some distance. So I crunched some numbers on two builds. First a Strength build using a Greatsword and Kirin Style and second a Dexterity build using a Scimitar and Dervish Dance. I built the characters out to level 9 and assumed, both characters took Power Attack and both buffed up before combat with only a Mutagen. Both builds have the Accelerated Drinker trait and walk around with their round one buff extract in hand.

Heads up, but accelerated drinker does nothing to extracts. It does work with potions you brew yourself though.

FAQS wrote:

Alchemist: Does the Accelerated Drinker feat from Cheliax, Empire of Devils allow a character to drink an alchemist extract as a move action?

No.

—Sean K Reynolds, 10/08/10

Well that sucks then =P. The action action sequence can still work out about the same though, and after thinking about things this morning I found that the actual problem with the Strength build was trying to activate Kirin Style too soon.

Assuming that both bulids have a +4 Belt, and prebuff with their Mutagent the both wind up with either a 27 for their offensive attribute. If you pop a Haste Extract, spend a swift action to start Studied combat and then move towards your target both will be ready to unload 3 attacks on round 2.

The Strength build will do more damage, but the Dex build can afford an extra weapon enchant or some utility magic items as the Str build has to buy items to shore up a rather weak AC.

The Strength build can really climb ahead with Kirin Style, but you want to activate it on round 2 instead of round 1. This may not be the strongest style to use though, as in practice you're only likely to get to use it every 3rd round, usually coupled with your Sudden Strike. A Hasted Full-Attack isn't worth giving up, so you've got multiple options competing for that swift action.


TarkXT wrote:

1 round of non use versus 30 minutes of a constant +2 attack and damage with natural armor to boot.

If you go dex focused instead it doesn't affect your studied combat at all and you can grab an agile weapon for the exact same effect.

For the record I'd never touch the longsword when a longspear will do just nicely.

Good point on using a reach weapon for some distance. So I crunched some numbers on two builds. First a Strength build using a Greatsword and Kirin Style and second a Dexterity build using a Scimitar and Dervish Dance. I built the characters out to level 9 and assumed, both characters took Power Attack and both buffed up before combat with only a Mutagen. Both builds have the Accelerated Drinker trait and walk around with their round one buff extract in hand.

The Dex build was able to afford a +4 Dex belt while the Str Build had to spend that cash on stronger AC items. This means that on the first round of combat the Dex build can drink his extract (Haste), move towards the enemy and activate Studied Combat. The Str build has to drink a Bull's Strength Extract instead, has to activate Studied Combat as a move action and then use Kirin Style as a swift action to.

On round 2 the Dex build got to make 3 attacks while the Str build makes only one solid attack. This is where the Dex build starts to jump ahead.

If we assume the Dex builds third attack always misses, then the builds do about the same damage. If you give the Dex build Arcane Strike then it comes a little ahead of the Strength build. If the third attack hits every other time, then the Dex build does about 25% more damage, or even more with Arcane Strike.

So with a higher crit chance weapon and better first round action economy, the Dex build edges out the Str build on damage when fighting solo. Now if you can get an ally to provide some of these buffs, freeing up your actions on that first round then things get better for a Strength build. The Strength build also has the option of opting for a good reach weapon and going for a combat maneuver build early on, while the Dervish build has its first 3 feats spoken for.

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