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750 posts. Alias of Hatch240.


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I think the best caster/archer in the game is fighter1/wizard5/EK10. I've played it myself and it's really excellent at all levels relying on how OP archery is for the first few levels and then leaning more into magic to buff up and compensate for missing stuff later. You end up with 9th levels spells. You can even dip 4 of AA at some point so you can drop the anti magic shell cheese on casters.

The trapfinding trait was opened up to the party, the cleric has it. Also the AT doesnt seem to come into his own until later levels. Emeral Spire ends at 13th at most. I'd hate to spend the whole campaign sucking only to just get good enough on the last levels

any link to a good arcane trickster build?

The cleric is a summoner/buffer, we don't force anyone to heal and especially with the witch and cleric summoning there should be plenty of stuff in the way to soak damage. I've been considering some stuff along the lines of a gunslinger or archer, but conjurer wizard is also in the mix.

focusing on enchantment with a witch already in the party?

We have a Witch, an Evangelist Cleric and a Bloodrager. What would you run for the 4th player?

lemeres wrote:
can full attack anything in a 45' wide circle

So you mean 20' reach? Yeah it's not hard. You can build an abberant bloodrager who gains 5' reach at 4th along with access to enlarge person and long arm. At 4th level you can have a 20'reach with just that since they all stack which means a 40' reach with a reach weapon and later a 50' reach with lunge.

Froth Maw wrote:

I've heard people say that rangers are good at TWF, but I've never actually seen one not get destroyed in game. My orc barbarian sponged a whole fights worth of arrows while our party's ranger died from one full attack. The worst archer I've ever seen and the worst scout I've ever seen were also rangers. Ranger is still pretty popular though because everyone wants to be Aragorn.

TWF itself is mechanically deficient due to requiring more resources for an inferior product. I can't build a good playable TWF ranger that I'm happy with, but I can build extremely playable 2h rangers no problem. It really requires looking hard at your ranger style options, I like Gorums best.

Any class built with a pounce mechanic (without giving up too much) plays drastically better than a character without that mechanic. You can build without pounce, but you're doomed to spend half your time without something to do but move.

You can design around it by taking the cleave feats and hurtful, invoking more than one attack after moving via those mechanics. That ends up being just fine. There are just some classes where it's harder to do than others.

Optimizing hurtful really means waiting for cornugan smash at level 6/7 on a full BAB class. Anything sooner and you're blowing more feats for a more questionable applicability (immunity to non lethal). Also, the progression of your intimidate bonus slowly outpaces the target number by .5 per level, so the longer you wait to bring it online the less feats/traits you need to blow pumping intimidate for a certain roll.

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In every AP I've run in as a player the GM applies a minimum of the advanced template to all creatures and buffs up the big guys even more, he then removes loot from the APs to the point where we never make WBL and the adventures still become obscenely easy after a certain point. The system really loses its luster in later levels, but you can stall that breaking point a bit by not having as much loot to buy the OP items as quickly.

London Duke wrote:

I would definately take rogue through 4th level, debilitating injury is crazy strong and makes the rogue one of the best if not the best melee debuffer in the game.

Also be sure to grab Minor Magic (whatever) and Major Magic (Longarm), combined with whirlwind attack, Longarm, Lunge, and a reach weapon you can hit everything in 20ft! Grabbing Arcane Training (Wizard) would let you use a wand of Enlarge person for free expanding that to everything in 25ft. Thats pretty awesome when combined with debilitating injury and riving strike and 25ft on either side is really really alot of space.

It would be very intensive but you could also grab Dazzling Display/Shatter Defenses (or beg a fellow pc to do it) to be able to sneak attack everyone within 25ft with your whirlwind attack.

Actually your natural reach with longarm and lunge is 15', your reach weapon doubles your natural reach, so you can hit 30'. If you enlarge person your natural reach in this setup would go to 20' and reach to 40'.

So I've always assumed these two work together nicely, but now that I read closer it appears that heroic echo only works with spells, SLAs and magic items.

Bardic performance is a supernatural ability. Do those stack? If not does the shared buff ability bypass the requirement? How are people using heroic echo?

I'm trying to figure if it's worth having the eldritch heritage line for this bloodline.

Nothing will beef you up like the reach build suggested above. That and a boarding pike are extremely good for the campaign. Coupled with a source of slipstream (multiple castings stack) you're going to be very impressed.

Agreed, there are so many ways for archers to get into melee without any real drawbacks, and archery is so vastly superior to melee on most classes that I wouldn't let anything stop me from making an archer if that's what I wanted to play.

UnArcaneElection wrote:

Actually, you CAN get close to a full BAB with close to full arcane casting, using the Reach Cleric guide tips and applying them to a build that jumps through some hoops -- search for "Third Character" in the post, because the first part of the post is about other characters. Check out the rest of the thread, too -- for its group-mind play purpose, it could use some more people.

I just looked at that build.

First of all, the familiar still gets all the saves and whatnot, still pretty flatly better than one bonus spell from an item considering what valet familiar and lookout get a diviner, that's not considering the tremendous boon a faerie dragon is if you snag improved familiar later.

I mean, in my opinion, +4 initiative and double craft speed is worth way more than one spell a day.

Secondly, how are you building a melee reach EK without mentioning combat reflexes?

Third, how are you telling him to take arcane archer when you laid out his feats and none of them included any of the three archery feats required to get into the class?

The "third character" build made no sense, took additional traits with other vital feats missing.

Savage Dirty Tricks is a perfectly ideal rage power if you're stacking bull totem on an amplified rage skald. The save is strength based and you get to stagger/daze nauseate someone once a round. This gives you a good amount of control for a melee character. Sadly none of those conditions actually makes the target easier to hit. I know in my build I'm looking at hurtful/cornugan smash though, so the loss of an attack each round isn't quite as bad.

Reckless Rage is (IMO) terrible, you invest a feat that is power attack without the scaling. I'd much rather have Harmonic Spell, lingering performance or invest in a measterpiece.

Paizo FAQ 2015 wrote:

What makes something a fear effect? What about a morale effect?

Fear effects include spells with the fear descriptor, anything explicitly called out as a fear effect, anything that causes the shaken, frightened, or panicked condition, and all uses of the Intimidate skill. Intimidate, in particular, is a mind-affecting fear effect, so fearless and mindless creatures are immune to all uses of Intimidate.

Morale effects, unlike fear effects, so far have not had a descriptor or a call-out. Anything that grants a morale bonus is a morale effect. For example, the rage spell grants a morale bonus, so a creature immune to morale effects would be immune to the entire spell, including the –2 penalty to AC.

Wow, so that now brings up a whole bag of worms. If all my moral effects are increased via courageous weapon property and the -2 AC is a morale bonus, can I negate the penalty and even eventually get a +1 AC if my +4 courageous/furious weapon is in use? Probably no, they'd say you don't get bonuses to morale effects, just morale bonuses.

Deadkitten wrote:
I would say to avoid the bear, the extra HP is nice but it can outright kill you if your not carefull.Also, if your allies are benefiting from your raging song they have to worry about their HP as well.

I would say Bull is the only great choice if you are taking skalds vigor.

Ray-gun wrote:
The cavalier level lets you share your teamwork feat, but only for 3 plus cav lvl rds per day. Is there a way you were planning on extending this?

Valet familiar template shares all teamwork feats.

Markov Spiked Chain wrote:

You can't use Shared Spells to get the familiar to count as the caster of Shield Other.

Is there a reason you say that?

EDIT: Found it, it's because share spell only works on spells with the target of "You" and shield other targets "one creature"

Another thing that's kind of tempting me here is to access shield other and use share spell to have my familiar cast it on me, so he is the one taking half the damage, this could essentially double the effect of our fast healing.

Is it possible to share spell with the Tales of Twisting Steel masterpiece?

Also, using the totemic skald archetype you can select the bull as a totem animal, now your song provides far more strength making your vigor provide far more healing.

greater skalds vigor just provides the skalds vigor to the party, uses the same process to determine the bonus.

Fast healer feat would seem to be easy to build in due to half orcs already having free access to endurance. Get half your (inflated) con bonus to all healing effects like skalds vigor. It does not call out fast healing as not acceptable.

On the other hand amplified rage is modifying the base bonus provided by the song, not granting a separate bonus. There is certainly merit in the argument to give them the whole thing.

This build will now be used to resurrect Minsc, and give new purpose to his giant miniature space hamster Boo.

If you're going to have a valet familiar why not take Escape Route and never provoke an AOO from movement?

Absolutely agree, if you're in a wide open campaign the flying mount works out much better, and it works directly against snapshot. For my own purposes I know that snapshot will produce a higher DPR, and has an incredible cool factor when you're getting rushed by a lot of smaller minions.

I also have been playing the sylvanite EK archer, and I think they do the flying mount better. I'll be able to craft my own flying carpet which my familiar will fly for me, which essentially means my flying mount costs me nothing but a bit of gold instead of two feats. Casters get nice things again, film at 11.

I think if you play the griffon mounted ranger you need to shuffle the feats to your advantage. You have to take monsterous mount with your second level ranger feat because you don't qualify for it otherwise (removal of your animal bond feature). Monsterous mount mastery is a horrible 6th level feat when you're free to select Improved Precise Shot instead. Monsterous Mount Mastery is open to you on your normal 7th level feat and does no good to you prior to that since you need 7th character level to use the ability anyway.

Also, the griffon is only your level -1, so no need for boon companion there, very little return on investment from that feat.

I might be tempted to take mounted combat to protect your griffon a little better, and at that point I'd probably consider taking mounted archery later in the campaign if I find double moving to be useful. Remember the maps you play on are extremely tiny, you will have trouble getting off a double move on a griffon that doesnt break the map.

I'd build like this:

Ranger1 PBS, Precise
Ranger2 Monstrous Mount
Ranger3 Rapid
Ranger5 Deadly Aim IPS
Ranger7 Monstrous Mount Mastery
Ranger9 Manyshot

The whole concept of my snapshot archer is to replace the need for a switch hitter or melee ranger entirely. Archery is so vastly superior to either of those builds it's not really a choice once you see what archery is capable of. You're right to say the mounted builds need a segment. I'll add it after you guys give some feedback and we hash out what works.

I'd say the griffon mounted archer is vastly superior to the normal mounted archer. If you HAVE to play a mounted archer without a griffon/flight then yes, drop weapon focus last, but combat reflexes/snapshot/improved snapshot are immediate drops for anything else you like. Take manyshot sooner, and boon companion as soon as you like. Mounted combat is okay if you're taking return fire a lot and want to protect your mount.

So as near as I can figure the rules, it seems that if you choose to channel positive energy with rulership it means you either heal people with it or use it to harm undead, at which point you get the one round daze ability.

I'm building a cleric for mummies mask for a first time player, and I am not sure I need both, but since the saves are the same I'm not really certain I need the variant channel if I'm going to take turn undead. Does anyone have any experience with these abilities who can give me their take on which worked out better? I've read that turn undead isn't worth it.

Once the material is posted to the web I'll be happy to touch up the guide.

Grokk, I don't think it's worth it for my own purposes. Half the campaign occurs in a location where I can't be on my mount, so blowing a feat on it seems wrong to me when I have other pressing feats to take.

Edit: I think the only things I would really update are the value of the Erastil trait (old deadeye?) for the ability to completely ignore the first person in the way of your shot (ghetto IPS, and slightly better), and the bow you attune to a party member to ignore them for cover purposes. I'd probably also add the greater hat of disguise which I missed the first time around for all day small status (+2 to hit at no damage cost) and it's additional darkvision and scent capabilities to couple with pheromone arrows.

Beyond that, it's still mostly the same feats we're after. Not much new to include. After poking around online the ranged tactics toolbox appears to be more fluff than anything and doesn't add much of value. I'll see when it becomes available though.

I discuss this a lot in my archery guide for rangers

At this point, I'd recommend a greater hat of disguise for all day small status which will net you a +2 to hit, scent for pheromone arrows, and dark vision to make up for being human as well as letting you ride a medium mount.

Give up snapshot/improved snapshot if you're going for the flying mount, you won't spend as much time in the thick of things to justify it.

On the other hand, the early entry EK archer can have a familiar who can pilot a small flying carpet for your archer. This is a far cheaper way to get a flying mount IMO and the EK archer is more relevant later on in the campaign (IMO).

Wow, so many experts showing up to explain why this guy is terrible. Too bad they're not contributing to the conversation.

After some consideration if you want to replicate the movement and firing you'd need to go mobile fighter. You can get a full move off and take a full attack action for the cost of your first shot after 11th. Mobility isn't typically needed as much for archers, but if you're trying to replicate the mobility this might be best.

If you were okay with a mount then there are a ton of ways to get that done, and you don't need to invest any feats into mounted archery. Mounted archery in PF is pretty OP.

I still think the sohei/fighter I posted above is best for rate of fire though, and if you were getting to level 19 you could have both the sohei rate of fire coupled with the mobile fighters mobility. Technically stacking weapon training on top of the mobile fighters weapon training replacement ability is possible too.

Imbicatus wrote:
If you go with the whip build, a level of warpriest is a great dip. You get proficency, weapon focus, and a damage upgrade.

Warpriest gets whip proficiency? I never found where it says that.

Your example is a flat 10% lower chance to hit, shooting 25% more often. Thank you for agreeing with me and illustrating my point :-)

Also, obviously my fighter levels can be archer fighter levels as well. No loss of functionality there. The archer fighter can't use gloves of dueling, but the sohei can, this makes up for much of the lost attack progression. I can't see the drawback to diversifying.

Never take mounted combat feats for archery, they're terrible and don't justify the loss of the feat.

The only thing this guy is doing is putting a lot of arrows in the air. A Sohei archer can technically stack flurry with rapid shot and multishot to get the greatest number arrows out. I don't even think the sohei mounted combat feats replace the monk feat list, just augment them.

The only other thing you can do to fire more arrows is take the improved snapshot like with combat reflexes, but it's hard to afford on the monk feat budget.

The monk has a jump off at 8th when he gets his second flurry attack, waiting out the third at 15th is probably not worth it. I would say you stack any full BAB type after that (fighter being obvious to make up for a lack of feats). Optionally take a level of empyrial sorcerer and go eldritch knight (assuming you build in an early entry for it) for the buffs and a couple extra feats.


Monk1 PBS, Combat Reflexes, Precise Shot
Monk2 Deflect Arrows
Monk3 Rapid Shot
Monk5 Deadly Aim
Monk6 Any Monk Feat (probably deflect arrows here)
Monk7 Weapon Focus
Fighter1 Manyshot, Weapon Focus
Fighter2 Snapshot
Fighter3 Improved Snapshot
Fighter4 Weapon Specilization
Fighter5 Improved Precise Shot
Fighter6 Point Blank Master

I was just looking at iomedae (rulership). Would the daze (harm) variant channel version of that ability apply to undead when you channel positive energy to harm them?

20 point buy, I was kind of resigning myself to just giving up on channel and tanking int and cha

Regarding a reach cleric, I read the guide when it came out. I really didn't want to neglect channeling since a campaign full of undead would be ideal for it, it just seems like too many directions to focus at once, and tanking INT (and possibly CHA) to 7 just seems wrong, too.

We have an ongoing campaign consisting of an alchemist (with trapfinding from the campaign trait), a deathless barbarian and a conjurer wizard. We've got a melee paladin who has been spotty on attendance due to real life issues.

I'm looking for a setup that a new player can get into. My initial thought is a generalist cleric (we do not ask our clerics to heal in combat, we don't need it and we don't want to burden a player with a forced role). I feel the ability to full cast, get up into melee and participate in the campaign discussion with some diplomacy will be a solid start to PF. The benefits of a cleric on a campaign focused on undead are pretty obvious.

Any suggestions on a character and build?

the current king of campaign OPness is the dazing spell wizard IMO

The problem with most OP builds is they take no defense into account. Why not be invincible? The Deathless Barbarian build has been all over the boards for some time, I'm playing it in my current AP and it's really great. The ability to wade into the enemy completely surrounded and come out of it with no injury is really astounding. Not caring about AC is tremendous.

1 Barbarian1 Power Attack, Endurance
2 Barbarian2 Superstitious
3 Barbarian3 Die Hard
4 Barbarian4 Guarded Life
5 Unarmed Fighter1 IUS/Crane Style Stalwart
6 Barbarian5
7 Barbarian6 Deathless Initiate, Greater Guarded Life
8 Barbarian7
9 Barbarian8 ERP: Internal Fortitude, Reckless Assault
10 Barbarian9
11 Barbarian10 Improved Stalwart, Unexpected Strike
12 Barbarian11
13 Barbarian12 Combat Reflexes, CAGM
14 Barbarian13
15 Barbarian14 Witch Hunter, Spell Sunder

evangelist cleric, skald or bard would be good, but honestly just having a wizard with some heroism and flanking summons handy will resolve the hitting problem just as well.

AndIMustMask wrote:
you're getting three feats at level 1 fighter, so i assume you're human--but isnt surprise follow-through a half orc/orc only feat?

It's not listed as an actual feat prerequisite, it just came out with a book on orcs. Anyone can take it.

It totally went over my head, good catch on pickins part :-D

pickin_grinnin wrote:
Will an adventuring party even pair up with someone with a -2 charisma?

Would an adventuring party be too afraid to approach someone with a +2 charisma modifier because they're too beautiful? Stop trying to shoe horn stat rules to fit your feelings.

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TWF is really horrible, you only get the benefit of this massive feat investment when you full attack. You won't be full attacking all the time, and maybe not even most of the time. Don't waste your time on that.

You can DPR calculate TWF any way you like it, but in a real AP where you have to move and attack all the time it's horrible, and even when you get to use it it's at a penalty.

On the other hand a thug/scout rogue with a big two hander, hurtful, cleave and surprise follow through has nicely invested his feats into places that compliment his abilities. Building for the worst case scenario of moving and then attacking, while still getting multiple attacks off is pretty awesome.

Fighter1 Power Attack, Cleave, Hurtful
Rogue2 Surprise Follow Through, weapon focus
Rogue4 Dazzling Display, minor magic
Rogue6 Cornugan smash, Offensive Defense, major magic
Rogue8 Shatter Defenses, Combat Trick: Lunge
Rogue10 Opportunist, Crippling Strike
Rogue12 Escape Route, Dispelling Strike, Familiar (Valet)

First attack of the round:
With a mighty cleaving weapon he can attack 4 times at full BAB, all with sneak attack, the cleave, mighty cleave and hurtful attacks can all be against the second target. That's (on average) better than pounce because there is no loss of BAB via iteratives, you just need the first two attacks to hit.

Even without cleaving he's got a good chance of attacking twice due to hurtful.

I would say cleave becomes his primary method of attack. In later levels, with Escape Route and a valet familiar he's getting no attacks of opportunity triggered by movement, which is of great benefit to him.

Ranged rogue is by far better off simply buying a goz mask and getting a familiar to drop smoke sticks for him, or using a wand with obscuring mist on it. Any other method of obtaining range sneak attack for a rogue has a lot of feats associated with it and rely on dazzling display.

Also, grease doesn't deny anyone their dex.

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I think this is where having NPCs really helps, where you can sum up the situation the players face and give them their options without going outside of the game too much. As you help them along they'll begin to think more for themselves, but the story elements can be difficult to tie together for players sometimes.

Yes, it's horrible when your players have a sense of direction with their characters and understand what it's going to take to make them effective. Wanting to play a person who is amazing with a whip, coupled with planning to take whip mastery and improved whip mastery so they can actually deal damage is totally game breaking.

On top of that, it's likely the player will want a whip. I mean, what the heck is that player thinking? He should totally give up his ideas.

born_of_fire wrote:
(...) Pretty sure the DM is already going to be unhappy with the raw damage I will be putting out without the added fun of dazing anything I don't kill outright.(...)

Then your DM really wont like a standard barbarian or just about any archer, since they do more damage in a given AP adventuring day. The only thing that makes the evoker so good is the ability to tie control to that limited damage, it makes them really excellent IMO.

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