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Pathfinder Society Member. 2,603 posts (2,605 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 1 alias.


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Silver Crusade

My condolences to his family and friends. :(

Silver Crusade

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Life as an evil mastermind ruling over the feeble minds of walking meatbags feels awfully good. Knowledge itself has a delicate taste that you could only begin to experiment the day your tongue is forcefully disconnected from your spine. The iodized electricity that runs around my jar is a permanent call to ecstasy, prompting synaptic fireworks that show me the deepest secrets and rules of the universe.

Fiddling with those to create, bend and amaze the living and the not-so-living is just the icing on the cake. Why, with such power, should I miss the icy breeze of the wind on my skin in summer, the eye-melting sight of a sunrise over the ocean, the unfathomable stench of perfume on a woman ?

... god I miss my body.

Silver Crusade

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Tels wrote:
Er... no. As a general rule of thumb when it comes to archetype design, you are supposed to swap like for like. That's what every designer has said when asked for advice on building archetypes. Sometimes it's Ok to swap it for something else, but you should try not to increase it's overall power.

When doing an archetype, you actually increase its overall power, at least when focused on a single gaming style or build... and few characters focus in several fighting or adventuring styles anyways, since doing a single thing really well means you are more useful 80% of the time and you will have a much harder challenge the remaining 20% compared to the vanilla class which always tends toward more versatility and balance than archetypes. The Cognatogen/bombing alchemist is clearly superior to the vanilla alchemist damage-wise, but he is also much more reliant on a damage source that can be easily negated or resisted against : bombs.

You don't have to replace abilities like for like. You can grant offensive abilities instead of crafting feats, or talents instead of spell-like abilities as long as it grants you nice and fun powers fitting the archetype's theme. You just have to make sure your archetype doesn't invalidate its base class or any other class (something the Knight archetype sadly is doing in ACG), usually by adding a tactical component to your strongest boosts over the vanilla class for a nice risk-reward mechanic.

The Lore Warden can deal damage just as well as the basic fighter can, and it's also better than the Fightr at all combat maneuvers. If he does it right, he'll have nearly the same AC as the Fighter, more skill points, and more combat potential.

The fighter still rules AC and damage over the Lore Warden, especially if put against target resistant to his maneuvers. While strong and much more interesting to play, I find the Lore Warden strikes a nice balance between a lot of meh archetypes for a class that already needs all the help it can get at mid-to-high levels.

Silver Crusade

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Some time ago, I wrote a full set of grit-like powers for fighters, granting cool abilities covering pretty much any type of weapons you could fight with as a fighter : general, circumstancial, and weapon-based abilities (mounted, ranged, shield, free hand, two-handed...).

We tested them in our group and it granted a much needed touch of heroism and tactical insight when playing a fighter ! I think the class would benefit from such a feature, much like gunslingers have grit and deeds.

Silver Crusade

Natan Linggod 327 wrote:

I was wavering about competence bonuses but decided to err on the side of caution.

As far as I can tell Dodge bonuses don't apply to CMD naturally.

Adding the bonus to trip and dirty trick makes sense to me, so I'll probably add that when/if I use it.

I didn't want to make it too powerful given that the prereqs are so light.

Rulebook :

"Miscellaneous Modifiers

A creature can also add any circumstance, deflection, dodge, insight, luck, morale, profane, and sacred bonuses to AC to its CMD. Any penalties to a creature's AC also apply to its CMD. A flat-footed creature does not add its Dexterity bonus to its CMD."

Silver Crusade

Natan Linggod 327 wrote:

Drunken Monk Style

Pretty cool and nicely balanced, I like the idea of switching between two stances and having wild pikes of efficiency when doing so.

Just a bit on the weak side IMHO. (I would have granted the dodge bonus as a morale bonus to all attack rolls with the base offensive style (competence bonus means it doesn't stack with bardic performance, which badly hurts a class relying on a lot of attacks), along with a defensive option to double it for one round instead. No bonus to CMD as dodge bonuses already apply to your full CMD.
Second style feat would remain the same ; last style feat too, except for the CMD bonus simply being the +2 dodge bonus to AC added to trip and dirty trick maneuvers.
This way it's a fair alternative to Weapon Focus at low levels considering Dodge is already a pretty weak feat tax, and it keeps relevancy at higher levels.)

Silver Crusade

Alexander Close wrote:
The Drakker makes reference to the Mounted Heroism feat... but i cant actually find such a feat. What is it?

Hi Alexander,

I hope you enjoy the book ! Mounted Heroism is a Dragon Rider feat in the 101 Renegade Class Feats supplement which basically allows you to switch places at lightning speed with a helpless creature in close range when mounted on your draconic steed.
The ability you are mentioning means a drakker with this feat can use it anytime by taking the place of said creature as if he was mounted, even though the drakker is technically both rider and steed at once in a single character. Instead of being the Dragon Rider's pet though, you're the cool one taking blows for damsels and princes in distress.

The feat was mentioned to show the intended compatibility and synergy between Steven D. Russel's previous 101 Renegade Class Feats and this supplement. Ideally, I wanted this supplement to blend perfectly with any other of the Renegade series and bring only new ideas, while retaining the great value of already available rules. Likely, the other archetypes in this supplement can use their class-dedicated feats from "101" (armiger, etc.).

The future Secrets of Renegade Archetypes II will follow the same logic. ;)

Silver Crusade

Caradwen: if you go the archery route, you'll first need the Arcane Strike feat. This feat alone will increase your damage by +1 per arrow, then +2 at 5th level, then +3 at 10th.
Then you need to increase your amount of attack rolls with Rapid Shot and spells like Allegro - so at 4th level, you'll be looking for 3 attacks/round while hasted + inspiring courage, so a base 1d6+2 going to 1d6+5 at 5th level with a +1 weapon.

But with stats like yours I'm afraid you'll have a hard time feeling efficient in combat. Arcane duelist wouldn't help much, especially if it breaks the character concept.

Weird words is an incredibly potent damage-dealing option - you'll be looking a 6 attacks dealing each 1d8+Charisma modifier on a hit. Each of them is treated as a ray that deals typed damage reduced by DR, so Arcane Strike would work too since rays are weapons. Only problem is this ability comes at 6th level, and by the time you'll have specialized in archery maybe (unless you don't take Rapid Shot and Manyshot at all).

Silver Crusade

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/Says the argument is gargabe but just proves it anyway by confirming the summoner is OP and the synthesist must be dealt with through cheap tricks like Antimagic Field in order to be balanced.

There is so much wrong in this thread. I could insert a long rant, but I'll not follow the ass wagon and just remember people reading this that all your arguments and those of synthesist defenders since the beginning of this thread can be resumed to:

- "my opinion is better than yours"
- "I'm so much better and more imaginative than everyone else, because unlike you I am willing to deal with broken rules..."
- and "... even though my way of dealing with the balance of broken rules is by castrating the characters using them by removing their class feature on a failed saving throw/making them useless with a spell/putting the player against something even more broken to teach them a lesson/making my BBEG immune to them/killing them in their sleep".

I don't need to justify myself or defend the skills of my group's DM ; neither do other people who just like us ban the synthesist.
Keep having fun. I'll just move away and enjoy the common pleasure that we will never play in each other's games.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Taku Ooka Nin wrote:
Guys, guess what, the regular summoner can give his eidolon hp AND cast rejuvinate eidolon on top of that. Hence making your entire argument that synthesists are overpowered to be complete garbage.

Nope, it just proves the summoner itself is even more powerful. I hope you at least recognize that just because you will burn your hand in a 200°C liquid does not mean it is COMPLETE GARBAGE to suppose a 150°C liquid can be pretty hot as well. Also, I was hoping thinly veiled condescension could stay far away from this thread after the first page.

But back to the topic: a vanilla summoner himself can at least be targeted more easily in order to challenge him without resorting to cheap tricks based on totally negating its powers or utterly screwing the player. And while it is both a potent damage dealer and spellcaster, it remains less powerful than a dedicated class, unlike the synthesist who overshadows barbarians and fighters in a pinch. Hence : more versatility, yet better balance.

Silver Crusade

Rynjin wrote:
"Short of a walking wall that does little damage"

You'd be surprised how damage can stack nicely when you TWF with a fighter, especially when you get to 11th level and spam Bashing Finish with your main 15-20 scimitar.

Before then, just pick a quick draw shield and TH your main/draw shield/shield bash/TH your main/draw shield/shield bash.

Or hey, if you want a high AC monk, try a snapping turtle Tetori : a 20 Wis/16 Dex grants you 10 + 5(wis) + 3(Dex) + 3(monk with robe) + 4(bracers of armor) + 4(barkskin) + 2(deflection) + 2(shield) + 4(with a Ki point) = 37/25/22 AC.

Silver Crusade

Taason the Black wrote:
For that matter, explain how any class short of a walking wall that does little damage can have a 40 ac at lv 10.

10 + 5 (+3 Light bashing shield w/Shield Focus) + 13 (+4 Full plate w/Defender of the Society trait) + 2 (natural AC amulet) + 2 (Deflection ring) + 3 (Dexterity).

= 35/15/32 AC.
Up to 38/15/35 with a +4 Heavy shield.

Add in fighting defensively for +3 to AC, up to +6 with a Halfling (small sized + racial feat) :

= 38/18/32 AC. (41/21/33 halfling)
Up to 41/18/35 (44/24/36 halfling) with a +4 Heavy shield.

Silver Crusade

So, I was wondering.

What happens if a creature provokes an attack of opportunity by attacking you, and you disarm that creature before its attack is resolved ?

- The attack continues but the creature must now perform its results with an unarmed strike (or gauntlet, if any)
- The creature's attack is lost but it can continue its round as normal

Silver Crusade

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Thanks for the honor of suggesting my name Endzeitgeist, especially by including me among so many talented big names of the industry !

Interjection Games wrote:
I wonder what it would take to get Rich Burlew to put the Dashing Swordsman in this thing.

Incidentally, I may have some WIP for Dreadfox Games's great Swordmaster class in The Secrets of Renegade Archetypes II. Something based on Charisma and awesomeness...

Silver Crusade

Yes it does actually : "When making a full attack action, a hasted creature may make one extra attack with one natural or manufactured weapon.".

I brought Haste in because Titania suggested that the synthesist's elemental attacks shouldn't be nerfed if all other characters using elemental attacks aren't.
To which I replied that the same level optimized synthesist typically hits twice as often, and the weapon enhancement actually sucks for everyone else, so no, because the evolution takes a nerfhammer doesn't mean every other poor sap already sacrificing efficiency for style should be screwed.
That's like wondering "oh damn, this character triple wielding keen falchions hits hard" then answering "let's ban all falchions for everyone instead of making it so that this specific class build actually cannot triple-wield them".

Silver Crusade

Titania, the Summer Queen wrote:
haruhiko88 wrote:
My group has been trying to tackle summoners for a while and one of the biggest house rules that we use is that special attacks, like poison, rake, and energy attacks, count against the maximum number of attacks. I know this "cripples the eidolon" according to our groups minmaxer but it makes a lot of sense and reigns in some of the power.

As long as you do the same with a warriors energy weapons sure that works...

Or you can actually work with a summoner and come up with something fair.

Sure. Everyone knows a flaming weapon you swing up to twice per round is gamebreaking and should be nerfed as hard as the one using it 4/5 times per round before the haste at the same level.

We are silly for suggesting such a nerf and not applying it to the most OP classes of all times, aka melee combatants with elemental weapons.

Silver Crusade

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Dreadfox Games's Swordmaster has a pretty awesome mechanic similar to deeds : the Dex/Int class knows specific actions that it may perform in combat and gains more of them as it levels. Basically each round, he may spend his round's action to start a customized combo out of openers/chain/finishers melee moves activated with different conditions and actions.

That's pure love for skilled players and pretty much what everyone wants the swashbuckler to feel like. It's like having a class with only deeds that can be used together in differents fashions and actually synergize together, allowing for highly mobile fights.

Silver Crusade

Knick wrote:
And going back to your previous post on Cha-INSTEAD-of-Wis-to-WIll saves, I would like to hear your thoughts on why you would take Wisdom out of the equation. Also, keep in mind I will be throwing the "But replacing Str with Dex for damage apparently marginalizes Str too much" point back at you if you cannot sell me on why making Wisdom add to nothing but skill checks is a reasonable option. At least Str would still be needed to carry a sword and get to PA. I'm all for making Charisma more desirable, but having a stat with almost no penalty for tanking (sort of like Charisma now) does not seem like a good idea to me.

- Because the swashbuckler as written badly needs a dump stat to become less MAD

- Because "Wisdom" is the last quality I would associate with any swashbuckler ever
- Because even Wis-based skills don't fit with the thematic
- Because the fighter can basically dump Int and Charisma without much prejudice
- Because "resisting mental control out of sheer pride" is awesome and swashbuckl-ey

Since I want the classes I play to not be incredibly MAD, to have mechanics fitting their thematic, to actually feel like the way they are supposed to be, and plainly be awesome, I rhknk you'll unserstand the fil rouge behind my mind on objective AND subjective reasons to make Wisdom a Swash dump stat the same way I want my gunslingers to have accute senses ans son't want my barbarians to be intelligent.

Silver Crusade

Lord_Malkov wrote:

I still think its incredible that anyone sees this class as being inherently dex based in any way.

Why? Because it only gets light armor proficiency? Because it gets weapon finesse?

I mean, I can just grab armor proficiencies right? I cab precise strike my heavy pick wielded in two hands and power attack away.

With a 12 dex and a 5 charisma, my dwarven "swashbuckler" is a very effective fighter.... it hits like a truck, has all the same panache tricks and the same panache pool as any SB with a charisma less than 14. Its AC will be just fine in full plate...

I mean is that okay? Why is it that this is not only a good build, but a build that hands down beats the dexterous swashbuckler in every area except a few skills?

... because we think of what we'd like in a swashbuckler in the final version, not the current one, which has already been proven to miss what the class should ultimately feel like.

The swash needs to be primarily Cha and Dex based, though we should be able to play off PA or Dervish Dance or a rapier and a buckler or TWF or a pickaxe without being crippingly gimped one way or another.
(And if -really- the final version misses the mark, well, there is still the 3pp Swordmaster for everyone not playing PFS since it seems to be so fun and versatile to play.)

Silver Crusade

Knick wrote:
So I guess you were just trading them out because they are too weak? Because it sounds like replacing CHA for WIS on Will saves would also work against charms... Quite frankly, I would rather see Cha and Wis added to Will saves so that I'm not rewarded for tanking Wisdom the same way I am currently rewarded for tanking Charisma. Take away the Wis bonus to saves and you will see a lot of Wis 7 swashbucklers.

Way to shorten my whole argument into fallacies - you may note I was the first to post in this thread, in between I put quite some time explaining what I'd like out of a swashbuckler, that includes recognizing the class needs better ST (my suggestion : Will as a low save but using Cha as its bonus and Ref-swap, more about this later)

To answer your question:
Nope, I'd like the Cha-replacing-Wis-to-Will bonus to apply :

- on all saves if this a stand-alone ability and the swash has low will progression (solving some issues at mid-to-high level and making Cha more important)
- my favorite option : Cha on all saves except charm and illusion if will is low progression ; the swash also receives a Reflex-instead-of-Will/Fortitude savig throw mechanic fueled by Panache against offensive effects targetting him. This option greatly improves Will saves against major SoD/SoS offenders while playing on the thematic weaknesses of a swashbuckling character, also rewarding high Cha. It also grants major life-saving abilities by allowing you to dash out of the path of spells targetting you/dodging the poisoned blade just fast enough to live and be awesome another day, favoring high Dex and playing on the class's best saving throw in a cool twist since the "worst" save can become the best for an instant (totally in line with a swashbuckler reversing the odds at the most climatic moment - it could even be balanced to "as many panache you can spend in the day" by allowing spells to target another creature if the swash dodges them.

But even with the second option, I wouldn't want additional bonuses against what I feel are thematic weaknesses for the class, the same way a cumulative bonus to Fort would be lame for a wizard.

Silver Crusade

Considering how it went in previous playtests, and since the designers's job is to design things (not read the boards and copy-paste the suggestions from people that may or may not at all get the concept of balance or theme right), I'd say the more we try to write the thing ourselves, the least the final result will deliver to our expectations.

Just consider one of the only things we know about the future playtest version : people complained about Parry/Riposte being both "weak", "too random", "much too hard to use" and "requiring a feat just to use it".
We know one of the investigated solutions is to solve the whole "I can't riposte at 1st level" issue by technically nerfing the deed so instead of requiring "1 point of panache + a successful incoming attack + a successful opposed attack of opportunity roll + 1 point of panache + Combat Reflexes + an additional attack of opportunity", it will now require "1 point of panache + a successful incoming attack + a successful opposed attack of opportunity roll + 1 point of panache + Immediate Action"... on a class that draws its damage potential and cool trick from having Panache and using swift actions. So you must have at least 16 Cha just to be sure to deal relevant damage on your riposte if by miracle you get to meet the whole prerequisites chain before you get the chance to riposte. I'm sure this is only part of the intended fixes for the deeds as a whole, but alone, this information seems like applying a band-aid on a open fracture because this way you won't bleed out anymore.

I trust Paizo for the job, but I honestly get the feeling than the most we point toward cool deeds and ask for improvement in the others, the most we'll get the cool deeds leveled down to a lower bland baseline for the sake of simplicity.

Silver Crusade

I think some of us have major divergent opinions on what the swashbuckler should be and feel like.

I've seen suggestions to add bonuses to saving throws against Charm and Alcohol/Drugs/Poisons, for example - but I must object to this idea. I have to say that if it was implemented, I would immediately ignore these bonuses and even swap them if possible for an archetype.
To me, a swashbuckler is all about getting in trouble... yet swarming its own way out with agility, precise cinematic swordplay involving taunts, dirty tricks and feints, moving enough to avoid the strikes of big brutes, and using the sheer strength of its personality.

A swashbuckler SHOULD get drunk, charmed, easily influenced and reckless enough to get involved in dangerous situations ; because that's what makes fun and interesting things happen, and cool/daring abilities being used.
He shouldn't get dominated or downed in a single SoD/SoS spell though - this would be highly anticlimatic and not fit well the whole daredevil persona.

(Hence why I suggested Cha-instead-of-Wis to Will saves to represent the strength of personality ; and a limited amounts of daily Reflex saves instead of Will and Fortitude saves to represent the slippery bugger.)

But again, let's just wait for the next playtest document. As of now the swashbuckler is one of the coolest ACG classes but it still needs some tinkering.

Silver Crusade

e. The GM/the player doesn't allow/play a Synthesist in a party with average characters, unless he specifically knows the system well enough to keep in check the power level around what the other damage dealer is doing each round.

Silver Crusade

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Taku Ooka Nin wrote:

So let me get this straight:
We have:
1 highly optimized and effective character.
3 poorly optimized and ineffective characters.

Are we supposed to be surprised that the optimized character is outshining them? Hell no, why would we be?

Here, try this, DOMINATION SPELLS.

If the OP feels that his current issue is a powerful character then he should act accordingly and find ways to remove the character with some form of crowd control or dominations. This, by virtue of him being unable to act, allows them all to shine.

So telling a player he should remove his crazy OP character for the sake of everyone's fun around the table is BADWRONG unimaginative noob GMing ; but screwing him in any possible fashion by using the cheapest tricks in the book to prove you can win (it's black friday, dominate, coups de grâce, banishment and negative levels for everyone !) anytime you want is proof of imagination and good DMing ?

Yeah. Sure. It's so balancing and fun to get from "crazy OP" to "dead or killing his party" in a single turn.

Gwen Smith wrote:

I'm going to come at this from a different angle:

You might try starting a new game, from first level, with only base character classes until your group gets a better handle on the rules. I'm saying this because at 10th level, no one in your group seems to know which magic items and spells can stack together, and that kind of mistake will completely break the game. It will be especially frustrating to you as the GM because the monsters and NPCs are designed assuming that the players are following those kinds of rules.

^ So much this. The system can get complicated enough not to begin with Advanced Classes.

- Don't allow the Summoner for newbies.
- Utterly ban the Synthesist, unless the one playing it is the rules lawyer who sincerely wants his playing mates to have fun with the game.
- Ban Metamagic Rods.

Silver Crusade

Let's just wait for the next playtest guys, I think there have been more than enough suggestions already, and the issues we know need/will be granted revisions have been highlighted enough that we can hope they will be taken into account.

No need to continue filling with thread until the next playtest pdf unless we have playtest experiences to share (I don't, because as indicated in the first 100 messages, I got stuck way too many times when trying to simply BUILD a character).
By the way, I've seen a lot of playtesting including right off-the bat a lot of houserules and multiclassing. While this reflects the class's issues, I don't think that's the most valuable output for testing the class itself as it currently stands - not that I'm complaining for this input which is much more than I did myself since I didn't play the class myself, considering I couldn't even build a character to begin with.

Silver Crusade

Kobash wrote:

Issues with precise strike aside, if you are against dex to damage, let's hear your voice.

No dex to damage.

Already said it a thousand times, but I'd rather keep Precise Strike and have cool abilities to match damage and synergize with critical hits - especially for non-conventional weapons. There are tons of ways to make Dex and Cha more important without adding it do damage.

If my last posts showed how someone with a bit of game design experience could get around the current issues with cool balanced features, be sure that a professional Paizo designer can do it better if wants to (and I'd enjoy that over a lifeless Dex-to-damage).

MechE_ wrote:

• At Xth level, a Swashbuckler adds his Charisma modifier to saving throws versus Charm effects.

Silly, a swashbuckler always fails againt charm effects by design !

Silver Crusade

Malachi Silverclaw wrote:

Similar things have already been suggested.

By me, for one. : )

The idea was that it's like Power Attack, except:-

• a class ability, not a feat
• not Str-based
• scales with levels of swashbuckler, not generic BAB
• multiplies on a crit
• scales at +1/2, or at +3/4 (like 2HF) if using single weapon

Lol yeah, so basically I stole it without even knowing it, sorry !

With 1000+ posts I think this thread has already received all the swashbuckler feedback needed for the class to become the ACG's most awesome.

Silver Crusade

Torbyne wrote:

Here is a comment: Can i still buy 13 STR and use Precise Strike, Tactical Power and regular Power Attack? Also, Power Attack is almost a feat tax for melee characters anyways since it seems they all take it at some point. Rather than give Swashbucklers a free version (or stackable) why not give them a class ability to use DEX as a replacement for the pre-reqs of combat feats? err... are there are other combat feats that have a STR requirement? mind blanking...

Sure. The idea would be to make it so that you don't need to pick Power Attack at all. The wording makes it possible to still pick it though.

You could absolutely pick Str and PA and still use a precise thrust - though you would have a reduced precision damage bonus when wielding your weapon in two hands and thus a reduced tactical damage output.

6th level, 20 Dex, +1 rapier in one hand, tactical hit (-2/+6):
+10/+5 ; 1d6 + 6(Pre) + 1(Mag) + 6(Tactical) = 1d6+7(+6) 15-20x2

6th level, 20 Dex, +1 scimitar in two hands, PA + tactical hit (-2/+4):
+8/+3 ; 1d6 + 3(Pre) + 1(Mag) + 6(PA) + 4(Tactical) = 1d6+11(+3) 15-20x2

=> The PA build deals 4 more damage for -2 to attack (exactly the balance of PA !) ; he would still need 13 Str and 1 feat AND 1 panache for this attack roll, meaning he would be less versatile in other areas. This bonus damage can be multiplied on a crit, making the deal even more of a high-risk/high-reward style for brute swashbucklers.
Note that he could offset some penalties by THing the first attack of his round then one-handing the remaining attacks (great incentive for longswords and dueling swords here). Also, the braggard archetype variant would have more use out of this feat.

This way it's balanced for mini-maxers and newbies alike because it's both simpler, stronger against low AC yet less abusable.

Silver Crusade

No comment on my "Swashbuckler's tactical Power Attack/Precise Strike" suggestion ? Damn, and I thought I was being clever today.

Silver Crusade

Ok mates, hear me out about this because I just got a cool suggestion that could please everyone.

Since the major complains are about :
- Str-based Power Attack-ing swashbucklers
- Precise Strike not multiplying on a crit
- Piranha Strike not working well with the class

... then what if the swashbuckler received his own version of PA based on Dexterity right at 1st level ? Something like :


Precise Strike (Ex): At 1st level, as long as she has at least 1 panache point, a swashbuckler gains the ability to strike precisely with light or one-handed piercing melee weapons (though not natural weapon attacks), adding her swashbuckler level to her damage roll. A swashbuckler attacking with a weapon in her other hand (including wielding her weapon in two hands) or using a shield other than a buckler only receives half (50%) this bonus damage. Any creature that is immune to critical hits is also immune to a precise strike, and any item or ability that protects a creature from critical hits also protects a creature from a precise strike. The extra damage of precise strike is precision damage, and isn’t multiplied with a critical hit.

In addition, as a free action when performing an attack roll, a swashbuckler can spend 1 panache point to attempt a risky but calculated thrust against her opponent. She suffers a -1 penalty to attack and receives a +2 bonus to the damage roll of this attack (this bonus damage is increased by 50% if the swashbuckler already adds her full level to damage rolls). At 4th level and every 4 levels later, the swashbuckler may at will increase this penalty by –1 and the bonus to damage by +2 ; up to a penalty equal to her Dexterity modifier (minimum 0).
This bonus damage is multiplied on a critical hit but doesn't stack with any effect or abiliy granting Strength or Dexterity bonus to damage.

=> This version allows TWFing by halving the base bonuses between your weapons.

=> While more versatile than Power Attack (its penalties and benefits only apply to a single attack roll and you control the exact penalty to your attack rolls when using the deed) and costing 1 less feat, it doesn't pigeonhole builds in Strength and still has a hefty panache cost, plus it doesn't apply to all attacks on your round unless you burn through all your panache to cover a single full-attack.
=> This option grants a versatile, tactical Power Attack mechanic that instead of granting x2 precision bonus to damage, instead deals damage multipliable on a crit so the ability complements the style.
=> It's written in such a way that you can only achieve it by having a high enough Dex modifier.

This agile "Power Attack" actually feels right for the class !
For a Str/Cha-based Braggard archetype, the deed would be closer to the current version :


Precise Strike (Ex): At 1st level, as long as he has at least 1 panache point, a braggard gains the ability to strike viciously with light and one-handed piercing and slashing melee weapons, adding his braggard level to his damage rolls. A braggard cannot wield any shield when using this ability, and attacking with a weapon in his other hand reduces by half (50%) this bonus damage. Any creature that is immune to critical hits is also immune to a precise strike, and any item or ability that protects a creature from critical hits also protects a creature from a precise strike. The extra damage of precise strike is precision damage, and isn’t multiplied with a critical hit.

In addition, as an immediate action, a braggard can spend 1 panache point to double his precision bonus to damage for the next successful attack. This bonus must be used before the beginning of his next round or is lost.

Silver Crusade

Swift actions are free actions except you can only do one per round, and since you can do free actions in a surprise round, it's safe to assume this feat would work.

Silver Crusade

The whole use-Reflex-for-other-saving-throws could be a double deed for mid-to-high levels :


Slippery Block-Head (Ex): As long as the swashbuckler has at least 1 point of panache left, he may use Charisma instead of Wisdom for the purposes of determining his bonus to Will saving throws.

In addition, by spending 1 panache as immediate action when requested to perform a Fortitude or Will saving throw, the swashbuckler may roll a Reflex saving throw instead.

Also, I really like your ideas too SmiloDan ! Dex to damage rewarding mobility is a great concept IMHO.

Replacing Bravery with an AoO would allow the Parry/Riposte deed to get efficient sooner (though it could still benefit from a lesser panache cost).

Silver Crusade

Hawktitan wrote:
Lots of good stuff

I really like all these suggestions mixed together. They make for a quite enjoyable picture of how the class should play like. Kudos for noting the issues about Targeted Strike - it could be great to perform this deed when you only get a single attack roll during your round instead of the current full-round action.

MechE_ wrote:

DEX to fort - no. No stat should give you a bonus to Fort and Reflex saves.

CHA to Will saves would be something I could get behind conceptually, but it would result in WIS being dumped to a 7 on every single Swashbuckler and I'm not sure that would be desirable.

Swashbucklers don't need to be wise, they need to be awesome, not learn from their mistakes and get easily out of the trouble they put themselves in. I don't mind having 7 Wisdom and Intelligence, because I don't want to be wise or learn things besides sweet-talking and dueling. When getting in trouble with a big dumb barbarian over a beer, a swashbuckler won't think "Dear god, taunting that muscled gentleman for spilling his spirituous beverage would be unwise of me".

They'll say "Sorry avout your drink, mate ! But... let's be honest, it was wasted on your damn ugly mug.".
I can totally picture Charisma to Will saves : "Come on, myself ! I said no to a pretty woman last night, I can say no to this creepy dude who raises litteral bones because he can't raise the most important one !"

What I'd like to see is a way to perform Reflex saves instead of Fort/Will saves. You just dodge so fast the poison doesn't get into your bloodstream, or the magic essence manipulated in the Suggestion spell just doesn't work how it was supposed to because you empty awesome brain isn't there anymore. Add in a Bluff check to make it seem as if the spell just succeeded and you're golden :D

"Die !" - *Wizard casts Suffocation*
*Swash dodges the spell's intricate magic web* - "I don't think so."

About the whole Str vs Dex argument :

I don't mind the class being forced into Dex and Cha.
- Ideally a swashbuckler shouldn't need more than 13 Str... if he wants to get Power Attack. PA doesn't fit well with precise thrusts like suggested by current deeds or even overall fluff anyway, especially if you don't make it clearer they cannot two-hand the weapon during deeds. Going 13 Str should be a choice (by giving more incentive to have high Dex and Cha), not a no-brainer.
- He shouldn't even need Dervish Dance either. There are other ways to make Dex relevant, and Dervish Dance would come with self-balancing features like the whole "costs 1 feat and doesn't allow shields".

Maybe there could be a Braggard-style archetype rewarding the 2H-ded longsword/dueling aldori sword style with deeds that don't suffer limitation regarding the handleness of the sword ?
A specific Dex-to-damage archetype getting dramatically more mobility at the expense of precise strike ?

Silver Crusade

Immediate action riposte means at best once/round, but that's significant enough and at least doesn't require Combat Reflexes to be used at full efficiency.

Alone, this could go against the idea of making the class more Dex-oriented even though removing a feat tax to use the class feature is cool... unless you indeed revise the panache cost.

Quick question :
Using 1 panache parry as AoO + 1 panache riposte as Immediate, if I have 2 panache points in my pool, would my riposte attack be treated as if I had 1 point of panache in my pool for the purposes of Precise Strike even though I spent it to perform this attack roll ? This would make a world of difference in potential damage.

Also, question to playtesters :
Has anyone played a small-sized class and given feedback about the whole -4 cumulative penalty to Parry ? I haven't had the opportunity to test myself and this penalty seems at least from reading it awfully crippling despite the concept advertising for piercing agility over towering brutes.

Silver Crusade

Knick wrote:
Recovery: Looks good on a gunslinger, why not a melee character? Honestly, the worst part of this deed is Opportune Parry--seems like if I'm going to spend a panache to save myself, I'm probably better off betting on my attack roll over 2 extra AC. I'd rather replace this with Gunslinger's Dodge. Never going to use this.

Let's say the BBEG scary hasted martial artist 5-foot steps into an adjacent square and begins to flurry/Power Attack/Dragon Style your face. Parrying all these Mike Tyson kisses will not get you out of trouble all day long.

Well, this deed instead basically grants you a +2 bonus to AC against the highest BAB attack, AND lets you get out of range off the itteratives because you are now 5 feet away from the guy who just used his 5 foot step already to get adjacent to you in the first place.
Sure, you lost our next turn's swift action and thus a lot of options, but at least you suffered at best a single hit instead of a full attack !

Silver Crusade

Lord_Malkov wrote:

Again, I am going to keep saying this until it sticks.

Fighters... ALL melee fighters, every single one of them, get the same benefits from a High Dex as a swashbuckler. With armor training, a 22 dex fighter can get his full Dex bonus to AC with Mithral Full-Plate at level 11.

So, a fighter is looking at all the same factors: Reflex save, AC, dex-based skills, touch AC etc.

Been going on for years. Strength still wins.

The Swashbuckler adds Parry and Riposte to that last... okay, sure. But with a 14 dex (12 plus a belt off Physical Perfection by level 10) they still get 3 AoOs per round. You probably don't have so much Panache that you can parry and riposte that often anyway.

So, either you are saying that all strength based melee fighters have been doing it wrong, and should clearly have been focusing on dexterity for all this time, or the current status quo of melee = strength is still the case for swashbucklers.

If fact, since they do not get access to TWF (the primary reason that fighters who aren't ranged might end up with a high dex) they pretty conclusively get LESS benefit than a fighter would.

So the age-old problem of the Dex fighter is still here, and is not being cured by calling out all of the same bonuses that Dex applies to.

I'm saying yet again that I DO want Dex- and Cha- based swashbucklers. But ideally, each choice of weapons or combat style should come with its own penalties. For example :

- Dervish Dance would grant Dex to damage as it already does. But you couldn't wield a shield, Power Attack unless you also put points in Str or 2H PA unless you also sacrifice Dex to damage.
=> High constant damage, average spike damage, low AC, 1 less feat to work so reduced versatility, high panache regeneration.

- Rapiers would be the simplest, most effective weapon to use all day long right at 1st level, allowing to wield a buckler or off-hand weapon. => Average permanent damage unless you invest in Specialization early, average spike damage, high AC, high panache regeneration.

- High-crit modifiers weapons could benefit from a deed granting them a potential critical hit on their next one-handed attack roll. This mechanic has precedence in the game and would reward high risk/high reward combat styles ; plus the spike damage wouldn't hurt that much as long as you don't add +5 to damage right from a Dex modifier.
=> Average permanent damage unless you invest in Specialization early, very high spike damage, high AC, low panache regeneration.

- Other one-handed weapons like the Longsword or the aldori dueling sword would allow to 2H wield them, thus making Power Attack a potent damage boost when out of panache despite their lower crit range.
=> High permanent damage, average spike damage, varying low/high AC, slight MADness, average panache regeneration.

- Light weapons would be usable in more situations and as off-hand.
=> Cannot be judged at all before a revision but ideally would grant above-average permanent damage, average spike damage, low AC, high feat cost, very high panache regeneration.

EACH of these builds would be based off Dex and Cha. The only ones with an interest in putting 13 Str would be the one-and-a-half-hander with longsword/dueling sword and the TWFing one to stack damage outputs. If you make Str or Dex modifier not stack with Precise Strike for example, you basically make 10 Str not an issue, and 13 Str would become a point-buy tax leading to Power Attack, so you have the CHOICE to pick that or not at the expense of lower skill points, hit points or Will saves induced by putting 3 more points in an ability score that will have no use except for your carrying capacity and some other skills.
If you add Dex to damage as a boost for everyone, you'll 1: have to cut something else to balance things out, and obviously the option which will receive the nerfbat will also be one of the most thematic and tactic since it allows you to deal more damage when you need it; and 2: you'll make high crit-range even better but will pigeon-hole the class into not granting benefits to other weapons out of fear they multiply too much bonuses.

You currently complain that swashbucklers are too similar to Dex-based fighters. Cool then, all the more reasons to focus on deeds granting awesome, unique tricks as the Swashbuckler's real deal and schtick, instead of begging for swashbucklers to basically be fighters based on Dex. You complain about fighters being the same yet basically want exactly that : a Dex fighter.

Right now the swashbuckler's deeds still need some work (panache cost too high for Parry/Riposte ; a mobility option akin to the mobile fighter ; maybe a critical hit button with a high panache cost, etc). Likewise, if the swashbuckler wants to remain relevant at his job without being inredibly feat starved and MAD, it needs a way to ignore some prerequisites of thematic dueling feats - namely the 13 Int, Combat Expertise and Dodge prerequisites. For the latter I'd like a way to treat Nimble as Dodge for the prerequisites of feats. I already have a +1 dodge bonus to AC, I don't want to take a feat tax when I already fill both the fluff and crunch of the following feat branch.

Also, no, you don't get to 2H piercing weapons with precise strike. The wording is clear in both execution and intent :

a swashbuckler gains the ability to strike precisely with a light or one-handed piercing melee weapon (though not natural weapon attacks), adding her swashbuckler level to her damage roll. To use this deed, a swashbuckler cannot attack with a weapon in her other hand or use a shield.

"With a one-handed piercing melee weapon" means you only do that on a one-handed weapon, not a weapon wielded in two hands which would become two-handed. Likewise, wielding a 2H weapon in one hand makes it count as a one-handed weapon.

"A swashbuckler cannot attack with a weapon in her other hand" : if you are two-handed, you are wielding a weapon in your other hand, even if its the same as your off-hand's. Even by stretching the RAW it's obvious you're not supposed to 2H this weapon and I'm sure we can expect a clearer wording in the final document.

Silver Crusade

Lord_Malkov wrote:

Dex to damage is not about Need, and it isn't about damage output either.

let me say that again in big text:

Adding Dex to Damage is needed for the Swashbuckler, but not because it needs more damage

The swashbuckler needs to add dex to damage because if it does not, it is not a dex-based class. Building a dex based swashbuckler with the class as it stands IS A TRAP!!!!!

Way to use overly dramatic straw-men.

I guess the fact Parry is based on multiple AoOs (and thus, high Dex) ; that your AC is determined by Dex ; that you are limited to light armors meaning you need Dex to both have good AC and Touch AC ; that your attack bonus is based on Dex ; that Reflex are based on Dex ; that Acrobatics and a lot of other useful skills are based on Dex ; that all of these mean nothing in making the final Swashuckler a Dex based class because it doesn't also add this modifier to damage.

Gee, I do suppose giving XXX to damage is the only way to design a class around using an ability score now. And here I thought the hours I spent in my free time writing public houserules, including some nicely-rated paid works for 3PP gave me a little bit on insight on the whole "writing cool class features for Pathfinder classes balanced around a theme and going beyond simple damage" thing.

The current Swashbuckler suffers issues and would benefit from really being re-focused on Dexterity ; but saying that it NEEDS to add it to damage for it to be the major ability score ? No, it doesn't NEED TO.

Maybe it could get more use out of Dex-based skills. Deeds with saving throws based on Dex. Performing Reflex saving throws instead of Fort/Will a limited amount of times per day. Adding Dex to confirm critical hits with high-crit modifier/low-crit range weapons. A way to also deflect missiles with a Reflex save or AoO. All of these increase drastically the importance of Dex. None add Dex to damage.

Silver Crusade

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Knick wrote:

To Maxximilius:

If I have this correctly, you're arguing against Dex to damage because it narrows the range of competent Swashbuckler builds into just Dex fighters.

May I remind you that this class is billed as the Dex melee fighter, so if everyone is a Dex build they probably did it right. If you want versatility, the Fighter class already exists. This class is aiming for a particular niche, and it has to be able to do it better than a fighter or a rogue for the class to have any reason to exist.

If every Swashbuckler is pigeonholed into a Dex build the class is doing what it is supposed to. Right now my 5 CHA / 10 DEX dwarf swashbuckler (Grumpy MacGrumperson) is wrecking face with a heavy pick and full plate (the only class feature you lose for not wearing light armor is Nimble, and I suppose 2 bonus feats to get to heavy). So far, he's doing an immensely better job than my Dex/Cha builds if I only use the Core books (no Agile weapons or Dervish Dance). That gives you the "versatility" of builds I suppose, but it also goes against everything this class is supposed to be.

You indeed missed my point. I'll explain myself in clearer terms : I'm not against Dex-to-damage because I want to be able to do Str-based/Cha-dumped swashbucklers. At all.

Quite the total opposite : what I'd like to be able to do with a swashbuckler is to create agile and charismatic characters, whose fighting styles are different and each rewarding and gimping in their own way. Look at the fighter : if you build a TWFing fighter, it's likely you'll dump your feats into it, leaving not much for saving throws or mobility. Likewise, building a pure THF will leave much to be desired for your AC and versatility when grappled.
Note that each of these melee styles depends on high Strength and Constitution or Dexterity for efficiency - yet this system is ideal because it allows for a great variety of builds. You are limited in terms of stats but not choices.

Now let's take a look at the current swashbuckler's basics :

- you are expected to fight with high Dexterity because of the concept (fluff), Swash Finesse and AoO-based deeds (crunch)
- you are expected to have incredibly high Charisma for the concept (fluff) and just to both use your Deeds at least once per day -and- keep relevant damage (crunch)
- you cannot TWF without losing your major damage bonus
- you recover panache with critical hits and killing hits
- you improve the critical range of your weapons

With that in mind, let's take a look at the weapons which will be absolute no-brainers for any swashbuckler :

- Rapier : 1d6 18-20x2, finesseable, allows for shield in off hand. Highest damage dice and crit range.
- Scimitar : 1d6 18-20x2, becomes finesseable AND can be wielded TH AND grants Dex to damage with a single feat but no shield allowed. Highest total damage output and crit range for 1 feat tax.

Why are you shoe-horned into these choices ?

- Wielding any other lower crit-range weapon drastically reduces your income of Panache points, which you will need to perform your class features.
- Wielding a scimitar grants you Dex bonus to damage, stacking with Precise Strike. Or if you just decide to go two-handed for one round, Power Attack suddenly gives you a base +6 damage at 4th level instead, letting you dump Dexterity and Charisma too. Not even accounting for the fact a lot of people in this thread asked for a way to make precise strike work with slashing weapons so the feat tax is no more.

Now, granting Dex to damage for all weapons would mean this damage would be multiplied on a crit, so the rapier and scimitar become even more no-brainers, especially if the later can still be wielded one-handed.
While this would at least avoid the "everyone picks Dervish Dance" issue, it would also mean damage bonuses which multiply on a crit would become even better.
I'm all for a damage boost so the class stays relevant outside of Precise Strike, but I fear adding Dex-to-damage would both require to nerf this deed which adds tactical options especially with mobile builds, and yet again shoe-horn the builds into only wielding weapons with a high crit-range.

There are simple solutions to this issue :
- Make Precise Strike's damage multiplying on a crit and add to it a way to perform critical hits easier (maybe the Precise Strike deed may allow you to spend 1/2/3 panache points to perform a critical hit on the next attack instead of doubling your level to damage on the next attack ? You would still have to confirm the crit on your next attack roll, but your choice to wield a 20x3/20x4 weapon would get rewarded by this damage spike and possibility to recover panache with both the crit and a possible killing blow.)
- Grant a higher critical range to x2 multiplier weapons you wield, up to a 18-20 base crit range

Ideally, I'd like to be able to play a swashbuckler who can wield a rapier and a buckler, a scimitar with a free hand, a finesseable longsword with Power Attack, two weapons, or a sword-and-cloak.
All these builds would be Dex- and Cha- based, but some would have more or less AC, more or less reflex, a higher or lower amount of panache being consumed at different speeds, better or lower saving throw or damage outputs. Basically, I'd like versatility in my choice of weapons.

And Dex to damage alone as a solution would only shoe-horn all swashbucklers into wielding rapiers and scimitars.

Silver Crusade

Even though a lot of people ask for Dex-to-damage, I hope again it will not be one of the major revisions to the class. Because as stated and argued multiple times, this addition would only pigeon-hole the whole class into the same damn builds, and there is no need for that considering we already have tools to make the swashbuckler a versatile class.

Precise Strike feels awesome, and I wonder how balanced it would be to just let it multiply on a crit. I get the feeling it will be nerfed by the inclusion of Dex-to-damage, reducing yet again the current coolness factor of the class.
I've seen Stephen Radney-MacFarland say that this bonus would not multiply, because you already get a way to double this bonus damage, and the designers do not want another way to multiply this bonus in a weird fashion...

=> But here is an idea I'm wondering about : what if Precise Strike granted a bonus to all damage rolls equal to your level, not stacking with Str and Dex modifiers to damage rolls, although multipliable on a crit ; and spending 1 point of panache didn't double this bonus to damage, but did grant you instead a critical hit that you should then confirm on your next attack roll ?

- This revision would allow a greater average damage output when not spending panache thanks to the multipliable bonus...
- ... thus improving the class's current lack of damage
- there would be no multiple damage outputs stacking (you may even increase the panache cost to 2 points for x3 weapons, 3 points for x4 weapons to balance out these crit multipliers)
- high crit multipliers would deal higher damage but only recover a single point of panache IF the crit is confirmed, unlike x2 weapons which would cost only 1 point to activate but would recover this point IF the crit is confirmed (balancing out spike damage output/average damage output and granting incentive to wield low crit-range weapons for nova swashbucklers, thus improving again the versatility of the class and its builds as a whole)
- this would make Dex and Str modifier to damage unnecessary to be relevant, though investing in any of these would have its own drawbacks and strengths. See my previous posts arguing about why this deed and Dex/Str modifier should not stack for the sake of the class's versatility, especially since this design also self-balances choices when it will come to build a unique swashbuckler for each player.

Silver Crusade

Technically, the Swashbuckler does fill the fighter role. Nothing wrong with granting them Weapon Finesse at 1st level, especially since granting this feat for free to all characters is one of the most common houserules.

Silver Crusade

Malachi Silverclaw wrote:

It has 'weapon training' as part of its name, you gain it at 5th level, it gives +1 to attack and damage with all weapons in a certain group and improves by +1 per 4 levels.

You get Improved Critical instead of extra weapon groups as you level.

It works for the Polearm Master's Polearm Training, why wouldn't it work for Swashbuckler's Weapon Training?

If someone with better search-fu than I could quote that FAQ it would be very helpful. : )

Because it isn't a fighter's "Weapon Training" ; it is a Swashbuckler's "Swashbuckler Weapon Training".

There may have been a clarification since then or it may have been overlooked, but since the APG, all class features treated as the base feature they replace have a clarification similar to : "XXX is treated as a ZZZ's XXY for the purposes of meeting the prerequisites of feats or magic items". I'd be happy to learn otherwise with the appropriate FQ ruling though.

Silver Crusade

Prince of Knives wrote:
lantzkev wrote:
I think they are actively trying to avoid front loading alot of classes in particular BAB 20 classes with features to make multi-classing less desirable/cheesy/muchkiny/beardy
Are you aware of how insulting andinaccurate this sentiment is?

You should say that to Dervish Bard, the Unarmed Fighter, or the Master of Many Styles/Maneuver Master Monks.

Multiclassing isn't cheesy, but having classes in the ruleset whose class features are so crippling/weak/uninteresting in comparison to their iconic front powers that they give no incentive to go over 2nd level in them is not desirable, and encourages mini-maxers into abusive builds.

Silver Crusade

Swashbuckler Weapon Training (Ex): At 5th level, a swashbuckler gains a +1 bonus on attack and damage rolls with one-handed or light piercing melee weapons. While wielding such a weapon, she gains the benef it of the Improved Critical feat. These attack and damage bonuses increase by 1 for every four levels beyond 5th level (to a maximum of +5 at 20th level).

It doesn't mention working or being treated in any way like a fighter's weapon training. There may be a line about hybrid classes I missed though.

Silver Crusade

LucianV wrote:

Overall, I am pleased with the way swashbuckler has turned out thus far.

I do however have one issue with the class:

Precise Strikes is horribly overpowered.

It's precision damage that doesn't multiply on a crit in a crit-based class and basically the only source of damage output in the current build, outside of Power Attack or Str-modifier (and the later will probably be heavily corrected in the future itteration anyways since it doesn't fit the class's concept and fluff).

The Swash cannot get Gloves of Dueling and thus loses +2 to attack and damage right there at mid-to-high level.
I don't see how this deed is overpowered in comparison.

Ellis Mirari wrote:

This may be an unpopular opinion, but I'd rather have the Swashbuckler fall slightly behind in flat damage (although it seems like one person's build had him evening out with the fighter pretty well) and be more useful in other ways, or have his damage boosted in a less direct way, than have Dex and Cha to damage. Its fine for a magic item quality because it's... well, magic.

The expanded crit ranges is a good start, though it doesn't come online until much later. Focusing on the bravado/intimidation aspect of the class at earlier levels could be an interesting way to handle it.

^ This.

A swashbuckler can already debuff attack rolls and saving throws as a swift action - your AoO-based combo team and spellcasting allies will love you. He will also receive deeds to disarm or trip enemies. He has more skill points than a fighter, better face potential to defuse situations or deal with them in a clever way. He will have much better AC than damage-dealing fighters and probably more mobility.

All the swashbuckler needs is damage good enough to reliably get treated as a foe worth dealing with. Not equal damage. I'm fine with a fighter dealing 50 DPR and an average swashbuckler (best crit range, huge AC, good amount of panache and cool powers, good skills, party face) dealing 35 DPR.
I'm fine with a Dervish Dancing swashbuckler to sacrifice AC and 1 feat to get to 40 DPR against more types of enemies and more reliably. I'm fine also with Power Attack-ing swashbucklers to deal 40-45 DPR at the cost of lower saving throws, lower AC, lower panache and 1 feat.
Heck I'm even fine with a PA/DD swashbuckler effectively gimping hard his AC/saving throws/feats versatility/panache score in order to reach 50 DPR, making him a lighter fighter with more skills and tricks. Because then, each build will have its own strengths and weaknesses.

EDIT: But this requires to take into account right now for the designers how to balance the benefits of Dervish Dance and Power Attack against each other choice. The whole "Precise Strike doesn't stack with Str and Dex bonuses" is one way to do that but there may be others.
Just remember that if you grant the ability to perform these deeds with scimitars right at 1st level without requiring the character to take Dervish Dance to treat the weapon as a piercing weapon beforehand, no other weapon will ever be used by swashbucklers.

Silver Crusade

Googleshng wrote:
If you have at least a 14 cha like Debbie here, that's never going to be worth a feat slot. You can coast by just fine on just the two points. If you have anything less than 14 cha, you are given at least the 1 freebie point, which is almost all you need. Take a single feat and you can dump what feels like it should be the second most important stat for the class to no adverse effect. Honestly, I'd even suggest removing that "(minimum 1)." Probably want to replace it with a note about not bottoming out from temporary penalties/cha damage though.

I don't understand why you feel the actual, current playtest's swashbuckler has enough panache already. Just to parry and counterattack, you need 2 points, and doing that effectively neuters your damage output if you haven't at least 16 Cha.

How would you find the place to pick 1 more panache point with a feat under the current incredibly starved ruleset ?

Silver Crusade

Am I actually providing any valuable feedback with this? I'm sinking a lot of time into this test, and really trying my best to play the class as best I can, but I haven't really heard any dev chatter related to any of what I'm pulling out of this, one way or the other. Not sure if I'm getting drowned out by all the theoretical math and gut feeling takes, or I was written off the minute I put down 9 str, or there's just more to discuss with the other classes or what.

I'm pretty sure a single post of playtest such as this one is more valuable than all of our previous posts discussing game design and balance. ;)


Level 2: Add charisma bonus to all saves. This is the most MAD class I've ever seen, and needs to benefit a lot more from cha than it currently does. Bravery can go away, it's not fear effects that make the awful will saves hurt.

Level 3 is pretty cool as is.

Level 4: Add dexterity to damage in place of strength, and make it mandatory. The image, armor, early finesse freebie, and weapon selection make this look like a dex-based class, but without this it is a straight-up trap to treat it as such, and it will crash and burn hard starting here and ending when you get an agile weapon (unless you got an obscure non-core feat at level 3 after wasting your level 1 on something you immediately got for free after, and use a somewhat inappropriate weapon). Taking strength-based builds off the table while you're at it shows true commitment to the premise, and conveniently nips the bud on some weird maybe-broken, definitely off-theme builds.

To this though I must yet again countergument vehemently.

2. Cha bonus to all saves at 2nd level would be too good, especially for the purposes of people dipping two levels and continuing with another class.

4. And yet again I really cannot understand this logic at all. Why would you shoe-horn the class into a highly limited choice of builds and weapons ("Oh, you're playing a swashbuckler and want to know how to play it ? Just pump dex and pick Dervish Dance and Power Attack because all other options will make you suck hard at your job."), when we definitely have the opportunity right now to help design a class that allows for a wide variety of characters, efficient at their job, versatile in their builds and tactics and fun to play ? What does it bring to everyone's table if your class can only be built in a single fashion if it wants to survive adventures ?
Pathfinder has always been all about choice even if some are less optimal than others. There is no reason to dedicate time and work designing a one-trick pony whose other choices aren't even suboptimal but stupidly weak, when it would take the same amount of time beginning right now to design an awesome class covering a lot of roleplaying grounds all the while keeping the panache/agility overall thematic.
We've got the chance to help build a cool class right now, and a lot of simple suggestions have already been made which if integrated to the Swashbuckler's skeleton, would balance nicely all builds based on specific weapons, tactics, damage, AC, feints and combat maneuvers. The Dervish Dancer would still be a potent option with balanced strengths and drawbacks. The Power Attack-ing swashbuckler would still be a potent option with balanced strengths and drawbacks. The rapier/dual wielding/light weapons/exotic weapons/cloak and blade/buckler wielding swashbuckler would still be a potent option with strengths and drawbacks. Same for the mobile spring-attacking swashbuckler or the one fighting defensively, or the one with style feats, or the unarmed one, etc etc.
Again, there is NO need to shoe-horn the class when it can be balanced with a number of lines in the rules you could count on one hand.

Silver Crusade

DM Crustypeanut wrote:

Feats Combat Reflexes(1st), Combat Expertise(Human), Improved Trip(3rd), Agile Maneuvers(4thB), Power Attack(5th)

You don't need agile maneuvers now if you already have weapon finesse and attempt a trip with your weapon (even if your weapon hasn't the trip property).

Silver Crusade

Athaleon wrote:

The scimitar can be wielded in two hands as well, and damage dice are irrelevant because the difference works out to exactly 1 damage.

I know that. All the more reasons to limit the swashbuckler to piercing weapons PLUS thematic weapons (whip, net) and specific swords (considering the Dueling Sword can be wielded as a longsword without the exotic proficiency, let's hope you will be able to wield a longsword with the swashbuckler too).

But, and follow me here : NOT INCLUDING THE SCIMITAR.

A swashbuckler could effectively wield a scimitar to use his class abilities as soon as he got Dervish Dance, turning the slashing into piercing and thus into a fit weapon.

Why do this ? To broaden the usefulness of underused swords like the longsword and allow for a greater variety of weapons choice, something the magus lacks painfully because the scimitar is an obvious choice. Here, we have the opportunity to get a built-in safety mesure to mechanically make several builds viable and grant maximum versatility in character choices - a philosophy that made Paizo one of the leaders in the marketn and the most appreciated D&D ruleset.
You don't nerf the swashbuckler but actually expand the options depending on what character you want to achieve : the scimitar will still be used by Dervish Dancers anyways so it doesn't change anything for them. Longswords and Aldori Dueling swords become perfect fits for PAttackers. Scimitar will be the trademark of Dervish Dancers and may even be used to both DD and PA. Rapier will be the weapon of choice for pure swashbucklers who want to build differently, receive plenty of panache and perform tricks in combat. Lighter weapons like dagger and shortsword will be used for TWF.

Silver Crusade

Temeryn wrote:
Obviously I agree 100% with the first part because I was the poster that come up with the idea of having the precise strike replace strength (or dexterity with dervish dance).

Beat you to it with my second post in this thread actually :p

I am not so sure about the critical multiplier idea. I could get behind giving x3 and x4 bonus 1 and 2 panache but I do not think longsword or shortsword should just get free 18-20x2 critical.

I just noticed this now, but if going the route we're pushing for, the longsword wouldn't even need this greater critical range.

It would be one the most balanced choices for a Power Attacking swashbuckler thanks to the ability to be wielded two-handed, the damage dice and 17-20 final critical modifier, improving the chances to recover grit with a killing blow, even if at the expense of reducing recober by critical hits.

Come on Paizo, that's obviously the miraculous answer :o))

Silver Crusade

Also : using the "level to damage not stacking with Dex/Str modifier" suggestion, a Dervish Dancing swashbuckler with a +6 Dex modifier would deal better damage on average until 12th level...

... which is also the level where the swashbuckler receives a bonus feat AND may retrain one of his other feats, like Dervish Dance. This number rises to 14th level with +7, or 16th with +8 modifier, rewarding highly Dextrous character builds.

So Dervish Dance would effectively become a choice that will be useful without being a no-brainer prerequisite for all swashbucklers, and can be changed for another feat when its utility is no longer assured - useful for the utter majority of campaigns played, since the part of 12-20 levels campaigns is significantly lower than those played between 1-12. Fun thing is that it would also balance Dervish Dancing against other weapon choices - Dervish Dance would be the way to go for the ability to stay efficient and deadly all the time and allowing you to burn all your panache quickly ; Str-based builds would be a balance between damage and AC at the cost of touch AC/overall MADness ; Dex-based builds would be more tactical and require to manage efficiently your Panache, but would come with great AC, chances to hit, evasion and cool average damage.

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