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Ryzoken's page

379 posts. Alias of Ryzouken.


1 to 50 of 379 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | next > last >>

Entryhazard wrote:
Ryzoken wrote:
But then, one supposes that might be why they don't want people turning into the beasties.
That is keeping an archetype essentially gimped?

"OH noes! I can't use Option X in PFS! Clearly the organizers hate Archetype Y and don't want us using it! It couldn't possibly be for any other reason but that! Curse them and their sudden but inevitable betrayal of my searing need to play Archetype Y, despite it being potentially slightly mechanically inferior* to Archetype Z!"

Don't put words in my mouth, I won't put words in yours. Deal?

*: this is up for debate.


I'm sensing a nasty trick for Underground Chemist Rogues to pull off. It's called Full Attacking with Slime Grenades. "Hey, that guy in the full plate? He's getting hit by X slime grenades. Each one does 2d6+Int to him, 3d6+Int to his armor."

Two weapon fighting... Haste effects... Rapid Shot... 6ish throws with the first one doing sneak attack... Pretty disgusting.

EDIT: Nin-ja!

WagnerSika wrote:
Atarlost wrote:

Lion Shamans lack huge wildshape forms, but get access to the nobility domain which has divine favor (use preferred spell to cast in non-domain slots or just prepare in higher domain slots) and magic vestment (cast once per day, possibly with an extend rod). Your wildshaping selection sucks, though. You only have two good forms

Actually there is now a huge form for Lion shamans, the warcat.

Agree on your other points.

Not in PFS, as the only legal options in the book according to the Additional Resources are the bristleboar, whisperfall vulture, and tusk blades. For warcats to be legal for Wildshape (and other polymorph effects), text akin to that under the Bestiary entries would need to be included.

Too bad, since that's a pretty nasty critter. But then, one supposes that might be why they don't want people turning into the beasties.

Wildshape functions as the Beast Shape line of spells. You therefore would not become a full on CR 13 warcat, but rather something warcat-esque as provided by Beast Shape III. In looking at the warcat, you'd get the stat boosts laid out in the spell, plus grab, rake, pounce, trample, low light vision, scent, and climb speed 20. You wouldn't get rend ever, as wildshape never expands to Beast Shape IV for some inscrutable reason.

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Rynjin wrote:
Ryzoken wrote:
If you post your build we could perform an autopsy and see where things might have gone south for you.
(Unchained Halfling Rogue Scout with Elven Curve Blade)


Halfling Rogue Scout with Elven Curve


Rogue Scout with Elven

Once more!

Good job men, we found the problem.


The witness clearly states the rogue involved was of the Unchained variety and thus the possibility of non suckage does exist. I move to strike the preceding remark from the record as it is prejudicial in the extreme.

If you post your build we could perform an autopsy and see where things might have gone south for you.

Cranky McDuff wrote:
Neat Ideas. I'm poking one of my players into converting his Summoner to Unchained to try it out, but he's not sure what to make of it(still pretty new player). I'll point him to your guide. Side note: Unless I missed something in this thread, I'm pretty sure Manyshot doesn't work with crossbows. Even repeating ones. I'd have to double check though and I'm going to bed. :p

You are not wrong. If you stick with the repeater, skip Manyshot. Alternatively, bracers of archery grant bow proficiency and since none of your prior feats are crossbow specific (no rapid reload, for example) you can pick them up, swap to a composite bow and grab Manyshot. Call it a minor build fork. My build intends to grab something like Improved Initiative or something in Manyshot's place.

Nagaji/Angelkin Aasimar/anything with +2 Str
Divine Hunter Paladin 2, Archaeologist Bard 2, Bloodrager 1, Dragon Disciple 7.

pre racial stat spreads:
20 pt buy: Str 16 Dex 14 Con 14 Int 10 Wis 10 Cha 14
25 pt buy: probably bump Cha up to 16.

Take Quick Draw early on, along with Lingering Performance (at 3) and Extra Rage (probably at 5.) Take Fate's Favored as a trait.

In combat: Activate Archaeologist's Luck for +2 to hit/dmg/saving throws/other stuff we might care about. Activate Rage. On our turn, two hand a 1h weapon (say, a longsword for ease of access) and use a free action to draw a quickdraw shield for extra AC. On our next turn, stow the quickdraw shield as a free action, 2 hand hit stuff, then draw the quickdraw shield again as a free action.

This on top of a build chassis that has higher than normal base saves due to multiclassing and +Cha +2 to saves.

Good and tanky, nice and hitty. Can even chuck javelins with good accuracy thanks to Divine Hunter giving us Precise Shot. Just gotta abide that paladin code.

voideternal wrote:
They still get the spell slots though, so they have to make do by either preparing lower level spells into the 2nd level spell slot, or metamagic-ing the lower level spells.

Preparing being entirely the wrong word notwithstanding, Void points out the single biggest, most glaring problem crossblooded sorcerers face. The -10% on Will saves is a whatever. Effectively delaying new spell accrual by an additional entire level compared to their peers means a crossblooded sorcerer is now an entire spell level behind a wizard, which is pretty much never worth the benefits crossblooded grants.

I've seen Crossblooded only ever used on characters who never increase their sorcerous casting beyond 1, such as pre FAQ mystic theurge characters dipping a level of sorc for +2 dmg per die on their wizard nukes or level 1 builds that players replace upon reaching level 2 that dump 5d4+10 burning hands spells 5 times a day.


BigNorseWolf wrote:

The scenario contains a monster that WILL one shot any level 1 character it hits. Once. Level 1 characters CAN"T be built with an acceptale chance of surviving that thing.

Do not run this for level 1s. Run anything else.

While I understand your point and nominally agree that a <redacted> is a terrible thing to spring on a level 1 party, there are ways to build to mitigate the threat the beastie poses. Once you accept it's a game of rocket tag, the standard principles apply: boost Init, boost offense, nuke it from orbit. Fight ranged and kite it (harder to do in enclosed spaces, but still theoretically viable as long as you can keep blocking charge lanes, possibly by ignoring the thing's minions entirely.) Win Init, focus fire it down with everything you have, and pray it's enough. Two hander Barbarians (2d6+6 or 8) and super optimized burning hands sorcerers (5d4+10, DC 17) are great ideas for taking that thing down and aren't totally worthless in the rest of the dungeon.

But yeah, I've been in a group that lost half the party to <redacted> and the <redacted> it created as it killed our teammates. It's almost as bad as the <redacted> at the end of the next level that opens the fight at elevation or the <redacted> in the level after that which is CR 8 against a party potentially composed of level 3 characters. Thornkeep: if you aren't max level for the floor, you're going to have a bad time.


Bear Burning Ashes wrote:
At least I got to use my Earthbreaker in a solo game of Quasit Racquetball =\

I'd feel bad about what happened to it, but that Quasit was a servitor of the Abyss so... totally deserved it.


Heh. All that talk of EMS reminds me of another story of a buddy of mine that he probably won't be along to share... so I'll share it for him!

I was GMing a higher tier scenario I'd played through once before on request of a friend on short notice. Party ended up nice and balanced, albeit small-ish. In they go, whacking various things and triggering other things, hilarity ensues, and then they reach the boss fight. The casters get flanked by a pair of Babau who manage to inflict a medium chunk of damage on each character in the surprise round partial charges, they extricate themselves from the flank and the melee start to work when the actual boss enters the fight.

I describe how the party hears casting from nearby, so they double down on the demons to try to finish the fight, likely thinking "Oh, they're buffing, we need to hurry before they finish their buffs." Demons are nothing if not resilient, so another round goes by, I call initiative for the boss, pause, then call initiative for the sorcerer, who was next. While he acts, I silently count off movement in my head. This round passes with the Babau nearing death and lo and behold, tis the boss's initiative again! I ask after the aquatic sorcerer's touch AC, and am met with "<number>, and I'd like to Emergency Force Sphere."

I smirk, looking at him, and go "Sure! Here's what happens. You feel a poke on the back of your knee and immediately react by encasing yourself and <Warpriest> in the Emergency Force Sphere (it's a 10x10), make a Fort save!" <sorcerer fails save> "Ooh, So, the quasit appears as its invisibility fades due to its delivering the Slay Living on you. You suffer... <50-ish> damage putting you to what?"
Sorcerer's Player: "-13."
Self: "And what's your Con score?"
Sorc: "14."
Warpriest: "Ah! I'm in the dome with him! I can heal you before you bleed out on your next initiative!"
Self: "<Sorcerer>, your turn. Stabilize?" <failed stabilization roll, needing a nat 20> "So you bleed out. <Warpriest>, your turn..."
Warpriest: "Oh, wow. It sucks I couldn't save you. Does your dome collapse? ...No? And it's hardness what? ...I can't get through that. Guess I'm full attacking the quasit..."

They pulled through, eventually the other caster dispelled the EMS, and the boss caster got taken out (the quasit got pasted after the second full attack from the warpriest.) The aquatic sorcerer paid out for a raise dead (luckily the Slay Living didn't actually kill him, else that wouldn't have worked...) and restorations and now we all have a healthier respect for Slay Living and Fort saves... Fun times!

tl;dr: Boss's quasit familiar delivered a Slay Living, triggering an Emergency Force Sphere that locked the Warpriest out of the fight, and killed the caster of said sphere so it couldn't be taken down except by damage or dispel, the former of which the Warpriest was incapable of dealing due to the dome's hardness.


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I'm of the opinion that it's not your job to avoid TPK's. It's the players' jobs to do that. Your job is to present the scenario/module as written to the best of your ability in the interest of everyone having fun. It's the players' jobs to design their characters and take what steps are necessary to overcome challenges set before them in the interest of having fun. It's the author's job to tune encounters to provide challenges that are appropriate and not overwhelming (unless the latter is explicitly the goal, which it feels like sometimes in Thornkeep.)

That said, I wouldn't expect something like mindless undead to perform brilliant tactical maneuvers in enclosed spaces so as to maximize attack opportunities amongst their allies while minimizing inbound damage. I also wouldn't expect mindful creatures to pound downed opponents into a bloody smear provided standing foes are near unless they have exceedingly good reason to do so. The <redacted> in Thornkeep is mindful, so it's clever enough to avoid OA's and flank with its dimmer minded minions, and making use of its innate ability is in no way poor form. It's also one of three actually dangerous encounters in the module (the others being the incorporeal foe and the jumpy bugs), one of the 'bosses' if you will.

tl;dr: Run as written. Blame the author, not the GM.

For inclusion in the guide, build stubs of the Archer Eidolon in the guide's format:

Archer Angelica Level 1
Subtype: Azata
Form: Biped
Evolutions (1): Scent
Feats: Point Blank Shot
AC: 13 (+2 natural, +1 Dex)
Attack: Longbow +2 (1d8) or Greatsword +4 (2d6+4)
Resist: electric 5

Archer Angelica Level 4
Subtype: Azata
Form: Biped
Evolutions (3):Ability Increase (Dex), Scent
Feats: Point Blank Shot, Precise Shot
AC: 16 (+4 natural, +2 Dex)
Attack: Masterwork Composite (+3 Str) Longbow +6 (1d8+3) or Greatsword +6 (2d6+4)
Resist: electric 5, cold 10, fire 10
Costly equipment assumed: Masterwork Composite (+3 Str) Longbow [700 gp]

Archer Angelica Level 6
Subtype: Azata
Form: Biped
Evolutions (5): Ability Increase(Dex)x2, Scent
Feats: Point Blank Shot, Precise Shot, Rapid Shot
AC: 20 (+6 natural, +4 Dex)
Attack: +1 Composite (+4 Str) Longbow +10 (1d8+5), or Rapid Shots +8/+8 (1d8+5) or Greatsword +9 (2d6+6)
Resist: electric 5, cold 10, fire 10
Costly equipment assumed: +1 Composite (+4 Str) longbow [2800 gp]

Given enough gold, the bow in the level 6 really ought to be a +1 Adaptive Composite Longbow, but I recognize it can be hard to justify an extra thousand gold in character wealth early on.


Leathert wrote:
Ryzoken wrote:
Leathert wrote:
This lead to the character eventually making her battleaxe Merciful, so this would never happen again.

Unless you do enough damage to wrap the nonlethal across their maxHpPool+2*con+currentHpPool. Then you kill them again.

Nonlethal damage in excess of an enemy's max hp + con score is converted to lethal damage.

Meh, huge damage potential has never been her thing. Unless she smites, and then she wouldn't be going for non-lethal anyway.

The "never again" was more about her character growth than actual mechanics anyway.

Fair enough, just pointing out that the possibility for lethality still exists, particularly with a triple damage crit weapon.

My paladin wields a sap until she can afford a merciful longsword. Carries a longsword for those foes who just have to be put down, but only ever draws it as a final resort.

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JRutterbush wrote:
Not everybody is a board-hopping, theory-crafting min-maxer

Oh, stop it. You're making me blush...


Leathert wrote:
This lead to the character eventually making her battleaxe Merciful, so this would never happen again.

Unless you do enough damage to wrap the nonlethal across their maxHpPool+2*con+currentHpPool. Then you kill them again.

Nonlethal damage in excess of an enemy's max hp + con score is converted to lethal damage.

*reads stuff about unchained monks and poor will save concerns* Hmm... dwarves get cool stuff for saving throws. They also get +Wis/Con and a penalty to a monk's few dump stats. I haven't made any dwarves yet, and I wanted to give the new monk a spin... Oh, and there's that Golarion specific sect of dwarven monks called the Ouat...

*looks through books* So I take Steel Soul, Glory of Old, and Honored Fist of the Society... uh huh... and a temple sword... that I could make large sized for 2d6 damage per swing at a -2 penalty... plus strength and a half... will save against spells/spell like abilities is +8 at level 1... right...

Hmm... can't afford 18 strength comfortably with starting 20 pt buy... don't like 20 land speed, but that solves itself at 3... if only I could solve both at once earlier, maybe with something like rage and fast movement. Can't take Barbarian due to lawful, but Bloodrager...

*looks over his character sheet* Yup, that's a thing.


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Ooh! It's not my story to share, but I doubt he'll be along so I'll share it for him.

A buddy of mine sits at a table with me and the guys and pulls his warpriest out, which he hadn't played in a while. We do our thing and come to a building we need to enter which has a dude as obvious bait for the trap of two rogues in flanking positions in the doorway. We engage from outside, tossing in toppling magic missiles and doing basic pokes at the rogues until my friend's turn comes up. At this point, one rogue is prone from a topple, the other is standing, and the bait is falling back behind a smokestick. "I walk in." The table looks at him with alarm and concern. "It's cool guys, I got this."

Gm rolls a crit threat from the guy on the ground and the other guy connects too. I look at him, eyebrow raised and a smirk on my face. He looks at his sheet and goes "Oh, wow. I thought I had a lot more hp than I do." Damage gets rolled, sneak attack applied, and then the GM notices they have a feat. Precise Strike. Cue 1d6 more damage per hit. Warpriest goes to con dead.

We still give him crap about it from time to time. Character got better thanks to the Risen vanity, was still a super entertaining "Did I seriously walk in and provoke four swings from flanking rogues on a level 3 character?" moment.

Matt2VK wrote:

Quick question -

Thought Rogues had no training with shields. So to use a Buckler would require using a Feat for shield training.


Using a shield you're not proficient in causes you to suffer the ACP to your attack rolls. Masterwork bucklers (and magic by extension) have no ACP.

The shield proficiency feat is pretty useless for anything that isn't a tower shield or a quickdraw shield. Want a heavy shield? Make it mithril. Want a light shield or buckler? Masterwork.


I once played through a level of Thornkeep with a core druid that wasn't fully leveled. I'd marked the level up at the top of the sheet, bought skill points and class ability increases, then set the sheet aside to do something and forgot about it. Cue me getting my arse handed to me in the final encounter, only to realize I was missing an extra point of attack, about seven hp (that ended up being fairly critical), and other minor things.

I now look over my characters the night before a game to ensure I'm properly marked and geared.


Kalindlara wrote:
Ryzoken wrote:
Kalindlara wrote:
Can you give us more on that sorcerer build? I know parts of it, but 5d6+10 at first level is a little hard to swallow. :)

Crossblooded Sorcerer. Select Orc and Draconic Bloodlines. Each Bloodline Arcana adds +1 damage per damage die rolled by spell for +2/die.

Next, we need to be effective caster level 5. Start at 1, add Spell Specialization for +2 caster levels (requires Spell Focus Evocation, so we're human for the bonus feat.) Then add Gifted Adept for +1. I don't recall offhand where the fifth caster level comes from, it might be Varisian Tattoo off of the Tattooed Sorcerer archetype, it might be something else. There's options. Could make it worse by adding an Alchemist Fire as an optional material component so that one enemy that fails their save catches fire as well, but generally the 5d6+10 is enough to make things disappear so the catching on fire is pretty much overkill.

I knew most of those. But, thank you anyway. :)

How is he increasing the die type, though? I don't know of anything that does that...

Oh, blerg. Brain fart. 5d4+10. It's a rather moot point since not much survives the 15 minimum damage. Half the time he doesn't need to bother rolling damage, it's only when stuff saves that he needs to.


Raymond Lambert wrote:
I am still still confused on how an pouncing Eidolon at level 1 gets + 5 on damage rolls?

Str 16 + Power Attack, if I had to hazard a guess.

Specifically, it starts as Quad, takes Ability Increase(Str) to hit that magic number 16, takes Power Attack for its level 1 feat. Eats up exactly 3 Evo points, 2 for +Str, 1 for Pounce.


Kalindlara wrote:
Can you give us more on that sorcerer build? I know parts of it, but 5d6+10 at first level is a little hard to swallow. :)

Crossblooded Sorcerer. Select Orc and Draconic Bloodlines. Each Bloodline Arcana adds +1 damage per damage die rolled by spell for +2/die.

Next, we need to be effective caster level 5. Start at 1, add Spell Specialization for +2 caster levels (requires Spell Focus Evocation, so we're human for the bonus feat.) Then add Gifted Adept for +1. I don't recall offhand where the fifth caster level comes from, it might be Varisian Tattoo off of the Tattooed Sorcerer archetype, it might be something else. There's options. Could make it worse by adding an Alchemist Fire as an optional material component so that one enemy that fails their save catches fire as well, but generally the 5d6+10 is enough to make things disappear so the catching on fire is pretty much overkill.


wakedown wrote:
Jeff Merola wrote:
... make what the Summoner can do look like a toddler swinging a stick around playing make-believe.

Depends on the context.

If you have a PFS game sitting down a bunch of players with 0xp and 0pp and there's a wizard and an APG summoner (built correctly) at the table...

The wizard, regardless of the mastery of the build, looks fairly medoicre. His best schtick is maybe Color Spray which could be fairly limited in value in an undead-heavy scenario.

The 0xp Summoner can almost hang with the 0xp wizard. They both can cast a fairly high DC Grease (arguably one of the most useful things to do at 0xp). They can both cast Daze or Acid Splash to their heart's content. The wizard maybe has one extra spell over the summoner - a mediocre damage spell (suped up burning hands for 3d4)? Sleep?

On top of being comparable as 0xp casters, the 0xp Summoner can parade out a basic pouncing eidolon, who has darkvision, Power Attack and can charge for +5/+5/+5 1d6+5/1d4+5/1d4+5.

Ultimately, that's what makes other plays go "huhhhh?" when they are playing a barbarian, paladin, fighter or whatever. The 0xp, 18-Str melee paladin, Power Attacking while smiting is swinging for 2d6+10 and still can't match the eidolon's damage output.

Ultimately, this is why pounce should've never been available at level 1 for 1 evolution point, but should've come online at level 7 when a druid's animal companion is allowed to pounce. I'd still lobby for Paizo to errata the APG pounce evolution to require level 7, because then it's likely a lot of the people complaining about the UC summoner vs APG summoner would see them as more comparable at levels 1-6.

My buddy's level 1 powerhouse caster is a Sorcerer with burning hands that lands for 5d6+10, 5 times a day. Suck it, Eidolon.

That said, yes, pounce is a potent force multiplier that shouldn't probably see play before level 7 or so. Though, with decently designed encounters the impact of a pouncer would be mitigated somewhat. Sure, a single target boss fight gets eaten by the thing with pounce, but that was happening anyway due to the action economy of the encounter. A multiple enemy fight where the targets are spread out means the pouncer only ends up killing one target a turn, letting others in the group shine as well.

In any case, for PFS at least, the point is rather moot. Unchained Eidolons are locked out of pounce til level 7, enabling other designs to shine (like my personal favorite: the archer eidolon.)

Summon Monster VIII. Elder Water Elemental probably does terrible things with its vortex. 1d3 Celestial (or Fiendish) Giant Squid can do bad things to crew.

Antilife Shell in conjunction with Wind Walk or something. Stand in the path of the ship and watch the crew get swept off the ship by your bubble.

Firestorm nukes the entire ship deck for damage. Unprotected crew might have a bad day.

Control Weather, depending on season, can be quite useful, killing enemy visibility or subjecting the enemy ship to a tornado/waterspout/heinous storm.

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JonathonWilder wrote:
Part of the issue is that I don't see D&D or Pathfinder as a game that need to be won or competitive,

I am growing increasingly weary of this statement. It's reductionist at best, utter bull manure at worst, and a strawman argument no matter how you slice it.

I, and others of my ilk who greatly enjoy optimizing character builds, do not do so (generally) out of some perverse need to 'win' or compete with other people. We do so because the intellectual exercise is stimulating, and the satisfaction of seeing an untested build flourish is grand. The thought "I need to win at Pathfinder" never enters our minds until it's spouted by our critics, at which point it's dismissed with a roll of the eyes. The problem is, one can only roll one's eyes for so long. The rhetoric, and the attributed motives implied, begins to grate once one has read or heard it enough.

I exhort any who read this: stop making this argument.

thatcheriliff wrote:
Where does it say you can only take one immediate action per round? I don't see that anywhere. Please cite for me? Also swift and immediate actions are two different types of actions.


Start reading at Swift Actions, then read Immediate Actions.

EDIT: Nin nin nin!

Here's a link to a scan of my proof sheet for my PFS summoner.

It contains the back end of the build, from stat allocation on the main summoner to feat selections over levels, to level by level evolution selections across the first 11 levels of play.

Not shown is:
my second character trait (still undecided. Might end up Gifted Adept for Mage Armor)
spell selections
gear (which I waxed on about upthread.)
racial selections. (half elf, Ancestral Arms(Heavy Repeating Crossbow) and Arcane Training)
skills (2 per level, max out Perception and UMD)

Rosc wrote:
Other random idea: Serpentine Azata with Combat Reflexes, reach on their tail and Dervish Dance can be kind of interesting. Might pale in comparison to a classic Biped with maxed Claw attacks for raw DPR, but it definitely has style. Plus all the benefits of a high crit range (possibly adamantine) weapon. Though I suppose for less points/feats you could just Combat Reflexes with a polearm and use a tail for close range.

+1 Agile Elven Branched Spear. Dex to hit and dmg with reach. Add on an Agile AoMF for your tail and you have a mono stat OppAtk machine. Probably start with Wpn Finesse at 1, Combat Reflexes at 3, then grab EWP at 6 when you can afford the super stick. Early on use reach with your tail, then dump the evo when you grab the pokey fighty stick. Or just ignore the pokey fighty stick and go all claw/tail. Might be worth becoming small size for more dexy goodness.

UnArcaneElection wrote:
I haven't seen the Unchained material yet -- are Eidolons still stuck with the same starting ability scores as with the original Summoner?

Exact same sets of scores.

Mighty Glacier wrote:
How does Ranged Serp Azata's damage compare to its Biped Azata brother? Is the climb speed reliable enough to shoot arrows while attached to a wall or is Skilled (Climb) evolution a necessity? What about Str, is it just way too low to make the best use of ranged combat?

At level 2, if you take Ability Increase(Str), your dmg is -1 from a Biped. If you don't, you're -2. Your to hit scales linearly inverse to your damage loss, assuming the Ability Increase instead goes to Dex. In the long run, your damage is indistinguishable from a Biped of similar design. This is because the starting stat spread differential is obviated by the numerous stat increases you apply to the eidolon. In theory, if you ignore Str completely, you'll end up -2 damage but +2 hit, which seems worthwhile. This is all per shot.

Your climb speed grants a +8 bonus to climb checks in addition to Str + ranks. Taking Skilled(Climb) doesn't stack with this bonus, so you're locked to 8+ranks+Str. At level 1, assuming you take Climb as a class skill and sink a rank in, you'd be looking at a +13 without esoteric boosting. That gets you typical dungeon walls (DC 20) without rolling (you can take 10, even in combat.) Level 3 gets you rough surfaces like natural stone walls or brick walls. Level 5 gets you flight, well before level 8 where you can finally stand on the ceiling without rolling.

Kitty Princess Fluffikins of Fluffy Bunny Land is increasingly unhappy. Tears are forming as we 'speak.'

Cavall wrote:
I would hazard a climb speed and archer build is a vastly superior build than any movement otherwise until flight. Who cares how fast you can move once you're up a wall and no one can reach you?

Yes, but you get flight at five. Your climb speed matters for four levels. And you're locked into that base form (and worse saves) for life unless you're an Evolutionist Summoner. I don't think it's worth it.

There's also the small matter of losing the boots slot on the Eidolon because you don't have feet. I guess you can spend Evo points on limbs(legs) but that seems bad too. This issue may not be as important since you share magic item slots with your Eidolon, the case can be made that the Summoner would wear magic boots instead of Azata-chan.

Rosc wrote:
I would suggest a special mention for serpentine Azatas: Or good dex for an archer.

See, I considered that for my archer build but rejected it. Here's why:

It's true that you get better Dex off serpentine, but at the cost of worse Str, slower speed, and poorer saves. Biped has strong Fort + Will which is pretty much golden, and our focus in Dex guarantees a decent Reflex as well. By contrast, Serpentine drops Fort, which opens up a lot of nasty negative effects, particularly since the Azata's Con isn't likely to rise higher than its starting value anytime soon.

Archers need Str for solid damage. Poor Str can be offset with feats like weapon specialization or with other static damage buffs, but we don't have em. So if we do take Serpentine, we're probably putting our first instance of Ability Increase into Str, meaning we're talking +2 Dex -2 Str compared to a Biped. Admittedly, a pretty petty difference, and probably not worth kvetching over, but... At level 2 (where my build is at currently) this would translate to +6 for 1d8+2 vs +5 for 1d8+3. Early on, the difference is noticable, but in the long run it probably won't be. Early on, keeping the higher Str opens up the option of switching to a (relatively) cheap Greatsword and smashing face when the enemy closes the range or has insurmountable DR or when our tank drops. Keeping the Dex high gives us 1 better hit with our bow, 1 better init, and 1 better AC, but we get boosts to our AC already, 1 point of init won't save us, and the 5% hit with the bow is easy to cover with things like PBS or pheromone arrows.

Finally, we're talking -10 base speed. We get a climb speed, which is nifty right up until level 5 where we get flight. When we DO get flight, that climb speed ceases to matter by and large and the reduction in base speed means a reduction in flight speed as well. It's also possible that the Eidolon ends up being the only 20' speed character in the group, presenting a situation in which your group is slowed up and given the extremely thin ice Eidolons already tread upon in many social circles... it's something to consider. So mechanically it's bad and in fluffy bunny land it makes kitty princess Fluffikins cry. You monster.

There's doubtless some good options for Serpentine base form eidolons, but as far as Azata go, it feels like a trap option. YMMV, of course. I just felt Biped was an over all stronger choice. Also less difficult to explain to the parents when you bring the outsider home for supper after dating for six months.

I think we need a clarification on what we gain when the base form and the subtype conflict as regards attacks. Does an Azata really not get claws on Biped or Bite on Serpentine? The subtype references a base form with a list of free evolutions, but the base form contains those evolutions as a subset of the evolutions it already has. Does the subtype remove evolutions from the base form or are the evolutions listed in addition to those the base form grants? The text is remarkably unclear.

Azten wrote:
and said "mounted eidolon".

Oh dear.

Between this and my wanting to play around with the magical girlfriend trope with my summoner ("I don't know who she is or how she got here! She just showed up along with this rune!"), my mind went places.

On further assessment: A strong case can be made for skipping Deadly and Manyshot until later and taking Clustered Shots at level 9 on the Azata. You're putting out 3 shots, 4 hasted with each doing in the ballpark of 1d8+6 before anything esoteric. With clustered in the mix, you're dumping a single hit of average 42 points instead of 4 at average of 10.5 ish, allowing you to worry less if you run across something with DR you can't get around. Leaving out Deadly Aim leaves 4 damage a shot on the table (6 damage once you hit 10), but you're 10% more likely to hit which is... noticeable.

Note: this is a lowball estimate based on purely level ups, Ability Increase evolutions, and a basic +1 Adaptive bow. Gravity Bow increases average damage to 52 points. Pheromone Arrows + Scent increases Gravity Bow damage by another 8 ish damage for an even 60. More esoteric options may increase damage more.

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Stat spread- emphasize Dex and Cha, if you stick with the crossbow you don't need Str. Highly recommend not dumping Int since the two skill points per level is important for Perception to see what you need to shoot and Use Magic Device for wands of things like Abundant Ammunition or Gravity Bow.

Feats- Point Blank(1), Precise(3), Rapid(5), Arcane Strike(7), Manyshot(9), Clustered Shots(11)

Biped base form. Important Evolutions include Ability Increase(Dex), Scent, and Skilled(UMD). Can select additional evolutions as points allow, but the core needs of the build are Ability Increase for Dex for hit and Scent for the pheromone arrows. Skilled is for activating wands of Cure Light Wounds and Gravity Bow.

Feats- Point Blank(1), Precise(3), Rapid(6), Deadly Aim/Manyshot(9)

Hvy Repeating Crossbow. Price starts at 400gp (ouch) so something you'd buy after level 1. Start with a light crossbow until you can afford this. Enchant with +1, then with Endless Ammunition(+2 ability) when you can afford it. Something like 18,700 in the long run.

Darkwood Composite III Longbow. PFS players pick these up for 2PA, everyone else spends about 750 gp. Eventually enchant with all the ranged goodies, but make sure to grab Adaptive for +2000 price so that the bow grows as your Eidolon's strength does.

Pheromone Arrows. They're 15gp a pop, but you only need to hit with 1 per bad guy per fight. Plug a guy with one, focus him down with durable arrows (to offset ammo costs, those Pheromone shots ain't cheap!), then plug the next guy. If these start cutting too deeply into your budget, consider saving them for boss fights or foes with hard to crack AC. We're really using these for the +2 hit, not so much the +2 damage (though it's nice!)

Other nice stuff: Bracers of Archery (replace with Bracers of Falcon's Aim in non PFS) for whichever of you is having trouble hitting. Core item

Wand of Gravity Bow. 750 gp per wand for you and your Eidolon to start throwing arrows that do greatsword damage.

It's worth noting that with the Summoner possibly throwing up Haste, that Eidolon is putting out 4 shots a round starting at 7, with the Summoner adding in 3 more at that point. That's a lot of dakka! Azata-chan adds in a 5th shot at 9 with Manyshot (or stays at 4 but upgrades to .50 bmg instead of 7.62mm) and the Summoner adds his 4th and possibly 5th shots at the same time.

Fun ancillary tricks: Worried about getting charged? Create Pit's got you covered! Drop one a little in front of your firing line and worry no more! Getting in a shooting match? Your squishy summoner can fire from prone! Drop down (possibly behind your pit) and keep firing, comrade!

Deadmanwalking wrote:
Melkiador wrote:
I don't have access to the book yet, but is there room for an azata archer build? What's the soonest you could give arms to a serpentine eidolon? Because that would probably be the best option.

Serpentine Azata actually start with the arms Evolution (presumably for a lillend sorta look). could do this from level 1 if you wanted.

Should work fine, though the Feat intensive nature of archery combined with an Eidolon's delayed HD as compared to a PC makes it a less than ideal choice from an optimization perspective. I mean, yes, you can have Manyshot by 9th level, but no earlier, and you won't have anything but that tree and Precise Shot at that point. Having both Deadly Aim and Clustered shots on top of that will need to wait for 14th level.

This is my PFS Summoner+ Eidolon build.

I figured by building her out to be a ranged combatant, I might take away some of the stigma of "Oh, great. An Eidolon. Guess the party fighter/barbarian won't be able to stand in melee." By opening up the range, I anticipate it will let the melee do their thing without my class ability getting in the way.

As far as build, I went Biped on mine. The higher Str meshes well with the bow one can buy for 2 prestige and the reduction in to hit is minor if one purchases Dex with the Ability Increase Evo. A fun trick is giving her Scent where possible, as this opens up use of Pheromone Arrows for an extra 2 to hit and damage. I'm not rushing Manyshot, instead looking for Deadly Aim as I'd rather the 3 or so arrows I'm putting out do solid damage than add one more shot. That may be a mistake, and I'll re-evaluate as I level.

On top of that, I made my Summoner an archer as well, though one focusing on using a heavy repeating crossbow. The five round magazine means I don't need to take Rapid Reload, freeing me up to take the regular archery feats, substituting Arcane Strike for Deadly Aim so as not to overburden my average BAB. Since I'm a half elf for the extra evolution points, Ancestral Arms as a racial trait gave me proficiency for 'free' also.

Around level 10, I reckon I'll grab the scent evolution off my Aspect ability to also gain the benefits of Pheromone Arrows, which should make a neat little trick. I'm also pumping UMD on both Eidolon and Summoner, so wands of Gravity Bow (2d8 crossbow, 2d6 longbow) make for interesting purchases. The Endless Ammunition enchantment is on my radar for future equipment purchases once fame and gold allow, but in the meantime the occasional oil of abundant ammunition at the start of a fight once I get Rapid Shot should stave off my needing to reload. Not that reloading is such a terrible thing, since my Azata will be plugging away with her longbow ensuring consistent damage while I do so. The best part is, by making both Eidolon and Summoner operate at range, survivability for both increases and I can make use of Shield Ally.

I submit that a ranged Azata build should go into the guide.

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Just a Guess wrote:

In one game my kobold barbarian is the one dealing the most damage, sometimes by a big margin. When we had some downtime and money to spend I did not ask the crafter to make me a belt of giant strength or similar but a heavyload belt and muleback cords. Now the little bugger can lift reeeaaaly a lot and the others, who got combat relevant stuff had a chance to catch up.

Fun for everyone.

So your kobold barbarian can carry the whole party while carrying the party?

For mine, the reason it's better than an old rogue because of feat allocation. New rogue requires one feat for the debuff build to come online (along with the Thug archetype) with Dex to hit and damage. Old version required 3 minimum (locked to scimitar.) This meant either being locked into human or coming fully online at level 5 (which my build does anyway, but only because I dipped Brawler for easy Dragon Style and unarmed striking. One could easily pick up a sap instead and come online at 4.) Further, Debilitating Injury is an extra debuff the old rogue simply didn't have.

It's also worth noting, as long as the Thug archetype is compatible with it and you can afford a single feat, the core of the debuff build fits into any other trick you want to use. Just because I went with unarmed striking charge attacks with alchemical weapons for flexibility doesn't mean it's the only way to go, after all!

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Str 15, Dex 18+, the rest as you like.
Scout Underground Chemist Thug Rogue+
Take Enforcer, max Intimidate.
You charge. You deal sneak attack and get a free intimidate to shake them, Thug makes them sickened as well, and Debilitating Injury stacks on top of both. The enemy is now staring at -6 to hit,-4 to saves, skills, ability checks, -2 to damage rolls, and an extra -2 or more to hit you. Splash in a level of any arcane casting class and grab Arcane Strike and Riving Strike for an extra -2 to saving throws against spells and spell like abilities for your friendly mages. All this on top of a pretty icky sneak attack. Next round, switch your Debilitating Injury to AC to give your iterative attacks increased chance to hit, or just charge again. Consider dipping a level of Snakebite Striker Brawler for enhanced sneak attack progression and stronger unarmed strikes as well as qualification for Dragon Style for your Scout charges. Full build might look SSB1, SUCTR4, <arcane>1, SUCTR til end of lifespan.

At one: you run up and hit them in their face with an unarmed strike for 1d6+str, maybe sneak attack, and intimidate for shaken.

At three: you run up and hit them in their face with an unarmed strike for 1d6+str, maybe sneak attack, and intimidate for shaken. You can also draw alchemical weapons like weapons and can charge through difficult terrain and allies.

At five: you charge for an unarmed sneak attack running entirely off your Dex, intimidate for shaken, sickened, and debilitated. If that attack encountered DR you can't get through, switch to hybridized alchemical weaponry that you get sneak attack on.

At 10/11: I dunno. Go nuts. Set up massive save debuffs for your allied casters to drop SoD/SoS effects. Dump their to hit by 6 to keep your big hitters alive better. Do skills. Be perpetually unseen with Hide in Plain Sight. Once you have 4 levels of Thug Rogue and the Enforcer feat, you're pretty much golden.

Elven Branched Spear is a finesse reach weapon. The only of its kind. This means a Rog+ gets to use Dex for hit and damage starting at level 3. With reach. This is... very nice for not dying.


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Kerney wrote:
(and before anyone brings up the aasimar rush, do you think anyone could pull off summoner rush with, say a one week notice),

Yes. Absolutely. Totally, 100%. I expect we'd see a repeat of 20 minute Masters of the Fallen Fortress games and similar shenanigans resulting in a slew of grandfathered summoners in localized groupings, not unlike what occurred previously. Need 1 xp? Masters of the Fallen Fortress. Need 4 xp? Add Emerald Spire level 1. Need to play at level 2? Trickier, but with a 7 person group (GM +6), each person could prep a 1-5 scenario and run it after ES1. Fact is: if you provide an exception to a rule, a subsection of the populace will undoubtedly find a way to exploit it.

If a refusal by PFS organization to allow an opening for abuses of a grandfathering rule to occur causes you to personally be offended (a slap in the face, so to speak), I recommend attaining a greater level of objectivity.

It totally sucked when I lost three character builds I was tinkering with to the SLA FAQ reversal. At no point did I feel slapped in the face. Things happen.

Debuff rogue. Enforcer feat + Cruel enchant + Debilitating Injury for -4 to attack, saves, skills, ability checks, and -2 to weapon damage on top of the penalties from Debilitating. Don't feel like getting hit? How's a -10 total penalty to attacks against you sound? Want to stack it all in one round? Trade Cruel for the Thug archetype's Brutal Beating ability.

All that on top of your sick sneak attack beats, made more awesome with stuff like Sap Adept and Knockout Artist. Feels like it's got potential...

Purple Dragon Knight wrote:
AncientSpark wrote:

Here's a question: If a player new to Pathfinder joins your game and says "I want to play a piratey swashbuckling scoundrel" and you show him the Swashbuckler and he agrees. Then you tell him that you do no damage with their main style for levels 1-2, do you think he'll find that fun? Do you think that your explanation that "it's a payment for Dex to damage" will enrich their gameplay?

It might, or might not, depending on the individual. If he's the type of player who wants everything at level 1, then he'll probably not play a wizard! LOL

If he does not find it fun for level 1-2 he can play something entirely different, then at level 3, retrain level 1-2 back to Swashbuckler and thus avoid this entire suffering?

Or he could build to get dex -> dmg at level one.

A) Human Swashbuckler with Wpn Foc and Fencing Grace
B) <race> Inspired Blade Swashbuckler with Fencing Grace.


Mark Stratton wrote:
A number of people had stamps made that say "Core Campaign" or some variation of that. Mine was about 30 bucks, but others have gotten theirs for much cheaper.

Vista Print sells custom stamps for $8.50

Of course... navigating their service without purchasing extra stuff or accepting their marketing stuff is a pain... still useful.

Kaapelikala wrote:
BigBadWolf wrote:
Don't see what being in/out of society has to do with this one
PFS is supposed to be played by the book and as such there shouldn't be any houserules for things (AFAIK).

I don't intend to be rude or demeaning with this question, but have you played a game of PFS?

While it's true that rules should be adjudicated by RAW where possible with the adjustments made by FAQ and campaign management, it is literally impossible to issue rulings on every corner case imaginable, and thus it is to the GM of any table to adjudicate grey areas of the rules and corner cases. This is what we call Table Variation, and is an unavoidable aspect of organized play.

So, your Mount spell will summon a non combat horse that you'll then need to ride/handle animal/other to get to do what you want it to do, based on the GM's call. As far as what happens after that, it's GM call.

Happy gaming!

Cap. Darling wrote:
There is no build in to summoning besides the School and conjuration can do other things. What feat are you talking about?

Whoops! I mixed threads up. Carry on!

Every way you can think of as adjudicated by the GM.
There are no specific rules against corner uses of the Mount spell (or any similar spell, for that matter.)

Well... it's a gemstone. In theory, you could do with it what you would with a gemstone. Spend some cash on jewelry and have it mounted ("That's a mighty shiny tiara, Mr. Bonecrusher"), or maybe a custom belt buckle with it stuck in there. Loop some leather or rope around it and hang it off your belt... fasten it into the hilt of your blade or on the end of your polearm...

I mean, there's nothing in the rules for or against the installation of magic gems in otherwise ordinary jewelry to my knowledge.

Scavion wrote:
Arachnofiend wrote:
Why can't we just get a Monk that can Fly. Monks should be able to fly if they try hard enough.
Because thats TOO anime. Next we'll have yellow haired, energy shooting, flying monks!

*adds to list of characters to make*

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