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I think I'm going to draft up a compare and contrast of:
Wind Listener Void Wizard/Varisian Pilgrim Cleric vs. Arcane Sorcerer/Lore Oracle
And look at 3 points of comparison:
Level 2, 4, and 5. I won't be factoring in Eclectic Training for the sake of simplicity.
Level 2: What are you able to do with 1 level in each class?
...and break down other advantages, like having one casting stat vs 2, being able to dump Dexterity as a Charisma caster, Spontaneous Divination, Caravan Bond...
"Difficult Terrain" is not a generic catch-all phrase; it's referring to a specific thing. Grease, etc. is not Difficult Terrain by the Pathfinder definition of "Each square of difficult terrain counts as 2 squares of movement." Agile feet lets you treat those squares like 1 square of movement instead of 2.
Difficult terrain, such as heavy undergrowth, broken ground, or steep stairs, hampers movement. Each square of difficult terrain counts as 2 squares of movement. Each diagonal move into a difficult terrain square counts as 3 squares. You can't run or charge across difficult terrain.
If you occupy squares with different kinds of terrain, you can move only as fast as the most difficult terrain you occupy will allow.
Flying and incorporeal creatures are not hampered by difficult terrain.
Gregory Connolly wrote:
I think coming at it from Sorcerer 2/ Oracle 1 might be better than Wizard 2/ Cleric 1. You only have one casting stat this way and do you really need 9th level divine spells?
I'm certainly considering that split, as it has several advantages. But I'm thinking being a Wind Listener (Sylph archetype) Void school wizard and a Varisian Pilgrim Cleric with Travel/Growth domains and Earth Channel will be a sweet mix too. Also, I have a generous point buy. Since I can dump Str and Cha quite easily, I think I can swing a very high Int and a reasonably high Wis.
Is fame per person or per group of adventurers? Is it possible to acquire 10 fame points by level 3?
I believe fame will be based upon your individual fame within that organization.
Actually, I'd rather take Magus / Cleric... you need 2 level of magus to gain spell strike and spell combat and you need magical lineage (Shocking Grasp). You can take Int / Wis and than use guided hand (feat) to add wis to hit.
An interesting thought, but not really what I had in mind.
Here's the race I have in mind at the moment. Bwahaha.
Aasimar Sylph Half-Elf Noble
People thought you couldn’t find a way to be more effete and refined than being an Aasimar or Elf or nobility? Well screw that! You’re the freaking kid of Arwen and Aragorn and then some.
My character's name will probably be Eldarion, at this rate...
So thanks to a generous GM, I have most everything I need to make an fantastic Mystic Theurge:
1.) Per the recent FAQ, I can enter Mystic Theurge at level 4 by using SLAs to meet the casting requirements.
2.) I have the latitude to create my own 20 RP race (With some oversight) But I should be able to meet the Mystic Theurge entry requirements easily with a couple racial SLAs.
3.) I have access to magic schools and guilds such that I can obtain Eclectic and eventually Esoteric Traing.
Eclectic Training (5 Fame): Guilds often require members to master and train in different subjects. When your Fame score in a guild reaches 5, choose one spellcasting class you have at least 1 level in—you increase your effective caster level in that class (including the number of spells you know and can cast per day) by +1, to a maximum caster level equal to your total Hit Dice. Single-classed spellcasters should still pick a class to which this bonus applies, since this bonus is retroactive.
Esoteric Training (35 Fame): The bonus to caster level you gain from Eclectic Training increases to +3 (but is still limited by your total Hit Dice). You may select a second spellcasting class to gain a +1 bonus to effective caster level.
The plan is to go Wizard 2/Cleric 1/Mystic Theurge 10/Magaambyan Arcanist 4/Loremaster 3 (Something like that?)
Now, what do I do with this? Part of me wants to just go full blaster; go Admixture wizard, Preferred Spell (Fireball), Magical Lineage (Fireball), Rime Spell, Dazing Spell, and just go to town. I have spell slots to burn, and I can spontaneously turn any of my spells into a cure spell or a fireball.
However, I was hoping for a different style of play since I've gone blaster before. ...any suggestions?
a) What kind of feats/traits would you take?
b) What would your daily preparation look like? How about using slots you leave empty?
c) How would you use scribe scroll?
d) If not fireball, what spell would you consider for Preferred Spell/Greater Spell Specialization? Spontaneous casting seems especially solid with the sheer quantity of spell slots.
e) How do you think it will play differently from a traditional single caster? (Roles inside AND outside of combat)
I do have an impressive point buy; I think my stats at level 1 will be...
I figure since Str isn't added to damage, I may as well dump it. Sure, it'll decrease my CMD, but eh. Hopefully I'll be able to keep a safe distance from my opponents, and I should still have a reasonable CMD thanks to my Monk AC/CMD boost.
I'll have a 15lb light load carrying capacity, but given I have no armor or weapons to haul around, I think that'll work okay.
As for Elemental Fist; if I wanted to, I could just say "At level 3 a zen deku gains Elemental Fist. A zen deku may treat seeds as if they were unarmed attacks for the purpose of Elemental Fist." I don't think I will, since my goal isn't necessary super competitive dpr, but just saying. I can design my own archetype. (Will require GM approval, but yeah)
Well, for damage at least the damage die is now d6. I also intend to have some minor wildshaping that will get me to a medium sized deku. (Seeds won't shrink like arrows from enlarge person) Also I'll eventually qualify for Improved Natural Attack. (I qualify by level 7) So if I wildshape and use the feat, my damage die will go from... d6 -> d8 -> 2d6. So eventually not so bad.
I could enchant seeds, I suppose, for bane seeds or something?
I would like for my class to give access to some more interesting seeds; although I haven't designed them yet. For starters, I'll be looking at Alchemist discoveries that modify bombs and monk special attacks for inspiration. (Elemental Fist & Touch of Serenity, for example. Oh, and qinggong powers)
I submitted some counter-offers to my GM/race designer and here's the Deku race we settled on. (Changes could still happen, but this should be about it.)
Fey (includes low-light vision)
Ability Scores: Standard (+2 Con, +2 Wis, -2 Cha)
Skill Traits: Camouflage (forest) +4 stealth in forest terrain
Defensive Traits: Natural Armor +1
Water Skipping : You can move across liquids, but if you end your turn on a liquid, you fall in.
Slow Fall: As an immediate action, Deku can flare their head-leaves outward to catch air and slow down when falling. This functions as an at-will feather fall, but can target only the Deku and has indefinite duration.
Deku Shooter: Deku can shoot seeds from their mouth. This is a ranged natural attack and does not provoke an attack of opportunity. These attacks do not add Strength to damage. The Deku Shooter is a masterwork weapon and can be enchanted as such.
Notes: You generate 2 + 2*level + Con modifier Deku seeds every day. You can load Deku seeds as part of an attack action. Deku seeds are available at 100 seeds for 1 rupee. Deku Shooter is a weapon with a range increment of 30ft. It deals d6 bludgeoning damage and crit is 20/x2
Special Seeds: You can create a variety of seeds. These seeds all deal damage as though one size category smaller.
Building off this will produce something inferior to the traditional Zen Archer Monk, at least DPR-wise, but I think it'll be interesting and strong in other ways. The smoke and tangle seeds should be fun, and the Deku Nut (Stunning Fist in a seed) should be great. I'm looking forward to designing the rest of the class features.
The race design was outsourced to someone other than the GM and he probably gave preferential treatment to certain races. Sheikah currently have a swift action, no dazing, dimension door "ninja poof" that they can use 1/level per day. 10ft range, but still. Little bit more powerful than the Deku 1/level per day Seed Shot.
Those are some good points about trying to keep competitive with damage. Although I'm okay falling behind the standard ZAM in damage if I get some added versatility. (Like Stunning Fist at range, minor wildshape, other debuffs, battlefield control, etc.) ...but I at least should be able to upgrade my ranged weapon. And I'll think about requesting strength to damage.
Perhaps all Deku begin with a "masterwork" Deku shooter? (Mouth) I believe my GM was planning us on having us bring our rupees to his GMNPC in town to upgrade our equipment. So I imagine he'd allow a similar thing for my Deku: Bring him 2000gp, now you have a +1 Deku shooter! Maybe accompanied by a shiny fairy fountain-esque cut scene.
My friend is about to start a Zelda-themed campaign. I was thinking of being an ocarina-playing bard and keeper of awesome songs. ...but then I made a throwaway line about being a Deku Zen Archer Monk, except with seeds instead of arrows. My GM was amused by the idea and said I should totally do it. So with GM's blessing I can work on an archetype of the archetype.
My goal is to be Race: Deku Scrub, Class: Deku Scrub. Sort of how playing a Stonelord Paladin Dwarf feels like playing Dwarf as your class.
This following is a rough draft for the Deku race; as I am the only player considering playing a Deku, my GM is fairly flexible with redesigning it to accommodate this concept. (Most notably the current Seed Shot ability; I need more than 1 seed/day!)
Fey (includes low-light vision)
Ability Scores: Standard (+2 Con, +2 Wis, -2 Str)
Defensive Traits: Natural Armor +1
Skill Traits: Camouflage (forest)
Water Skipping: Deku can run on the surface of liquids at a speed of 10 ft per round with a successful Acrobatics check each round. The DC starts at 10 and increases by 1 for each previous consecutive check (the DC resets to 10 if solid ground or a floating item of sufficient size to hold up the Deku is reached).
Slow Fall: Deku can, as a swift action, flare their head-leaves outward to catch air and slow down when falling. This functions as an at-will feather fall, but can target only the Deku and has indefinite duration. The effect ends, however, if the Deku takes damage while falling.
Seed Shot: As a standard action, a Deku can spit one of its seeds at an enemy within 30 ft. This seed is treated as a ranged attack roll with a base damage of d4 and does not add Strength to its damage, but adds all other ranged damage modifiers (such as from Deadly Aim). A Deku starts the day with one seed per character level, and its store of seeds refreshes each dawn.
Here are some musings on abilities I think would be great if my deku had.
Deku Class Abilities:
Stunning Fist: Normally this ability is swapped out for Perfect Strike, but I’m thinking I want this ability back. Why? It’d make the perfect Deku Nut!
Special Seeds: Beyond Stunning fist, I’m thinking other seeds could be cool. Abilities you might modify an Alchemist’s bombs with, like a tanglefoot bomb.
Minor Wildshape ability: I’m thinking some ki-fueled wildshaping would be really cool. It would be limited only to Deku forms, like a long-range Deku with a greater range increment than 30ft, Medium sized Dekus with bigger damage die for seeds than d4s, a mobile Deku with greater than 20ft movement speed, a gliding Deku to not just feather fall, but to fly while falling 5ft each round.
Seed Regeneration: While my GM is completely sympathetic with expanding my seed pool, for verisimilitude, he doesn't want it to be unlimited. I'm thinking something like 2+(2*level)+Con per day, but then you regenerate them between battles, or at the expense of ki, or whenever you wildshape. ...or something like that.
What do you think would be some great abilities for a Deku to have?
There was a powerful pro-kobold lobbyist group that pressured our GMs to add a homebrew rule that gave even more power to those OP kobolds.
They had a -2 Str, +2 Dex instead of the normal modifiers. Yes. THAT much power.
Naturally, our game group fell apart over the controversy and agony this ruling caused.
Yeah, it was fun to see this come back. Level 11 now (Dragoon 2/Paladin 9) in a Kingmaker campaign, and this feat sees little use. I'm still in the camp that asserts it is RAW, is probablynot RAI, but it should have been RAI anyway. I get 4d6 healing per Lay On Hands, but this feat still just gives me 1d6/Lay on Hands of damage. Horrible trade-off. The higher your level, the less it matters. Scaling the damage equal to the healing power of LoH, however, would be over-powered, I think. Even with the interpretation I'm selling, this is still a niche feat.
Definitely a mediocre feat for the dedicated Paladin. But for a 2 level Paladin dip, where you're stuck at 1d6 healing forever? Seems alright.
I'm thinking of making a high charisma character like a Cavalier/Bard/Paladin/Battle Herald and I'm eyeing this feat.
Reflexive Shot allows you to make AoOs against enemies your unarmed strike can reach, so if you have reach (for example, if you have Enlarge Person active) you can make an AoO against them. So AoOs out to 10ft in that circumstance.
I suppose I should mention that I adore Monster Lore as well. Our GM is especially generous to people with good knowledge checks; bleeding out details on DR, resistances, immunity, their saving throws... The way the campaign has gone thus far, knowledge checks can almost be better than perception checks.
I'll say! Was it just a huge point buy or were you given bonus points to use?
Something of a huge point buy. That Wis bonus does include a Headband of Wis +2.
The Shaman wrote:
To be honest, my character initially was designed to be the security guy. However, I made the mistake of developing my character. And by that, I mean mercilessly stealing from The Hobbit. He's supposed to be Kili. After I made that decision, I asked my GM if I could be the nephew of the dwarven king. (Kili is the nephew of Thorin) It being a homebrew campaign, my GM gladly obliged and proceeded to make a story arc revolving around my character. At that point, I concluded my Charisma was about to be more of a liability than I had bargained for.
...and thus I departed from pure ZAM-ness for 1 level of Inquisitor, for the Conversion inquisition and other punchy perks.
So I'm playing a dwarf with the following stats:
We have generous stats in our campaign, to say the least. Anyway, I'm currently a Zen Archer Monk 3/Inquisitor 1 with the conversion inquisition. I mostly wanted to take a level of inquisitor so I could be more sociable. (My dwarf is the nephew of a dwarven king and something of a diplomat, so I needed some crunch to support the role!)
But now I don't know where to go from here. Do I continue taking Monk levels? Or Inquisitor levels? Both?
Level 2: Wisdom to Initiative
Level 3+: Teamwork feats, like Enfilading Fire are actually quite good for an Inquisitor.
Level 5: Bane is a terrific class feature for archers
Level 11: Stalwart; evasion for the other saves! With a ring of evasion, being a dwarf with steel soul and glory of old, shrug off most everything!
Generally, Judgments get stronger, get some spellcasting to go with fantastic Wis score.
Level 4: Ki Pool
Level 6: Improved Precise Shot and Weapon Specialization as bonus feats
Level 8: Another attack on flurry of blows
Level 9: AoOs with bow
Level 10: Improved Critical as a bonus feat and Perfect Strike becomes roll 3 dice, take best result.
Generally, more Ki, Perfect Strike uses, scaling AC
Any thoughts? Preferences? Both fit my character concept well enough, so now I'm just mulling over the crunch.
Haha, I agree with both sides as well.
Depends. On. The. Group.
If it isn't burdensome and adds value to your experience, your players enjoy the realism, enjoy the balancing act, etc. use it. Personally, I enjoy it, even though I am very often the noodle-armed wizard. I like weighing (haha, oh, ugh, bad pun) my options on what I should carry and what I can live without or have someone else carry.
If your players just want to get on with roleplaying or hack & slash or whatever and don't want to bother with the minutiae, skip it.
Rule of fun, people!
Oh no. Oh no. Oh no.
Realism vs Actual Spell functionality. I'm not sure if I can cope with this thread!
I don't think any errata will ever exist, and in PFS, definitely not, but I could see a GM giving a circumstance modifier to spotting the invisible guy, or a general idea of where the guy is, give or take a few squares.
A Zen Archer Monk is perfectly self-sufficient in providing all the feats you'll ever want in Archery, so I wouldn't think Ranger or Fighter would be necessary.
Also, you Flurry as a Full BAB class, so that doesn't do much for you (CMB and CMD, standard attack actions... But eh.)
I would say you should go one of two routes: Cleric/Druid/Sorcerer or Inquisitor.
That's basically what it would come down to for me. Either go for full caster with very few class features boosting your archery, or go with the mediocre spellcasting with a bunch of class features that compliment you.
Let's see what an Inquisitor has to offer compared to a full caster.
+6 Skill Ranks per level and more Class Skills
Judgments to improve archery
Bane class feature to improve archery (Absolutely fantastic, by the way)
Stalwart class feature (Add in Ring of Evasion and that's all 3 saves!)
+Wisdom to Initiative
+Wisdom to Knowledge Checks
Wisdom instead of Charisma to Bluff, Diplomacy, and Intimidate (If taking the Conversion Inquisition)
Well, you can read the rest, but yeah. Inquisitor is tough to beat, it takes your archery up to a whole new level, makes you even more durable and you're going to almost always act first.
On the other hand, there's full casting. Which is absolutely fantastic and shouldn't be dismissed in the slightest. However, personal preference, if I had the opportunity to Gestalt, I would go for something with a lot of synergy rather than two aspects that are individually powerful.
ZAM is amazing. Full casters are amazing. Both on the same character? Well, better than either I guess, but you can't cast AND flurry on the same turn, so limited synergy.
ZAM is amazing. Inquisitor is good. Both on the same character? Absolutely fantastic. The Inquisitor really enhances everything you love about being a ZAM.
Well, the differences between medium and small would be...
Weapons have a smaller damage die.
As for movement speed? I think you actually remain at 30ft. Although I think this is where it may fall under GM discretion, because I don't think you can use a Halfling Aasimar in PFS anyway? So there's probably no official ruling on how non-human aasimar would work.
EDIT: And yeah, small characters have 3/4's of normal carrying capacity. Although the weight of your weapons and armor will be cut in half.
Vivianne Laflamme wrote:
The Chort's list is pretty good. Allowing players to buy arbitrary feats is going to quickly run into problems. (Let's ignore for the moment that these problems already exist in the game---cf. metamagic rods.) But it's fine if you let players spend money or other resources on feats that aren't worth a feat slot. Assuming you lack other house rules fixing feat taxes, it could also be used there. Rather than spending a precious feat slot on weapon finesse, you just spend a few thousand gp (or spend the feat slot at 1st level then buy it back in a few levels).
Oh, our campaigns would allow you to buy Weapon Finesse... except we give it to everyone for free, along with Agile Maneuvers. Also, Quick Draw is free as soon as you reach BAB +3, and Strike Back is free at BAB +11.
We did a few other tweaks here and there:
Forge Ring was rolled into Craft Wondrous Items. Craft Wands and Staves were also merged. Since we've made the judgment of allowing crafting to begin with, (Although it's revoked in some campaigns) no need to overly penalize the character who actually takes the feats.
Heighten Spell was eliminated or I guess you could say, given to everyone for free. If you cast from a higher slot, it is a higher level spell.
Two-Weapon Fighting tree is now condensed into one feat. After taking Two-Weapon fighting, whenever you meet the prereqs for Improved Two-Weapon Fighting, you get it for free.
The combat maneuver feats do not require Power Attack or Combat Expertise.
...that's most of the changes we made.
In our homebrew rules, we allow feat training but only from a narrow list of options.
We have 5k feats:
Skill Feats (Alertness, Persuasive, etc. But not Skill Focus)
Combat Maneuver Feats (Improved Grapple, Improved Trip, etc. Not the Greater versions however.)
Exotic Weapon Proficiency
And 2.5k feats:
Improved Unarmed Strike
Light Armor Proficiency
0 Level Adjustment Metamagic (Merciful Spell)
It's just a little tweak to the game to adjust to our tastes:
No need to multiclass just to get a proficiency (Although you still need to multiclass to get ALL martial proficiency, i.e. Eldritch Knight)
...and a few other options to customize you're character. Often, it's weaker than buying magic items. It takes a while of upgrading your Cloak of Resistance before you'd consider spending 5k on Lightning Reflexes, etc.
These are the general rules for all campaigns we run in our group. (There's ~6 of us, we take turns GMing different campaigns) GMs are free to expand the list in their campaign, give out a teamwork feat to the party, give feats as loot, or whatever.
It's extremely tough for a summoner to work in melee because although they have mid BAB, they have no class features that augment their melee ability. However, it can be done...
I'd suggest something like this for stats:
Str 16 (+2 for Half-Elf)
You can switch around Dex, Int and Wis a bit, but more or less like that.
Then use the half-elf alternate feature to lose skill focus and pick up a good weapon proficiency. I'm thinking a good 2-handed reach weapon.
...and work from there. *Maybe* consider power attack, although the penalty may make it even harder to keep up with enemy AC. Weapon Focus seems good. Outflank could help if your eidolon also takes it/other people in your party.
EDIT: You may want to check out this guide for a thorough look at melee options.
I think people alluded to it earlier, but specifically, Ascendant Spell would do it.
ASCENDANT SPELL (METAMAGIC)
You have learned how to emulate mythic spells using non-mythic forces.
Benefit: You can modify a spell to imitate the mythic version of that spell. An ascendant spell uses the mythic version of the spell, but doesn't count as a mythic spell for the purposes of effects that interact with the spell, unless you are a mythic creature. You can't use the augmented version of the mythic spell, or use spells effects that require you to expend uses of mythic power (even if you have uses of mythic power available).
An ascendant spell uses up a spell slot 5 levels higher than the spell's actual level.
I'd say normally the +5 adjustment is too much to be worth it, but on something that you can cast long before battle and lasts all day? Could be nice.
My friend is hosting a one-shot campaign and we're starting at level 3. While I could just go for a level 3 Wizard or something, I thought I may as well take advantage of the situation and play an interesting level 3 character that doesn't age well.
Like a Wizard/Witch/Magus
Or an Inquisitor/Monk/Empyreal Sorc
Or a Bard/Oracle/Sorc
What crazy multi-class would you consider for a level 3 one-shot?
Oh, one more thing I'm struggling with is that one of my players wants to Awaken their T-Rex animal companion (and I suppose attract a new T-Rex animal companion)
Has anyone had a player do this in their campaign and how did you handle it? For now I'm just putting it off, since the story doesn't exactly allow for the 24 hour casting time, but I do intend to let her do it soon.
That's an interesting idea! I have a group of 5 players, (also, Leadership, 2 Animal Companions, Improved Familiar...) 25 point buys, optimized builds (Uh, well, I helped half of them build their characters)
...so I've been applying different templates to the monster just to make the battles more interesting; higher AC, up to double HP, more damage... Whatever to make it more engaging. Oh, and just plain more bad guys. To help match the action economy.
But yeah, trying out mythic rules sounds interesting! I've had half a mind to pick up the pdf and that's certainly one more reason to.
So they've finally defeated Lucrecia and the Kreeg Ogres. Now what?
My players have been playing the game sporadically and the siege on Fort Rannick has taken a few months, actually. (We alternate between campaigns played, and I've been too busy with work and school to GM, but now I have time again!) Rise of the Runelords is the first campaign I've ever run, so I'm still somewhat new to GMing, but I know some of what I want to do next, and I'm hoping you all can help me do it:
1. Reassert the setting - I'm sure most of the players have forgotten much of what led up the siege on Fort Rannick. For example, the never-ending torrential rain. I really want to build up to this, even if it's only in a descriptive monologue, although penalties on perception and other things might be good as well. I'd rather not have it go like "Oh, by the way, it's raining hard and flooding now"
2. Give players options - The story can diverge into 3 different arcs; part 3, 4, and 5, and you can do them in any order. I'm hoping to give my players some latitude in what they want to do, since the adventure spells out that you can do this and our group's GMs have a habit of railroading and players expect to be railroaded in turn. Not the worst thing, but might as well mix it up when you can.
3. Work in subtle plot hooks - Goes with the last point; they have options, but which road do they take? I have NPCs at my disposal; the Black Arrows, Shalelu, a pixie, villagers... What would be a good way to lay out options available to them without forcing them to go one way or another?
4. Really focus on the story - Just explaining what I feel is a weakness in my GMing. Our games tend to devolve into combat-focused with story as an excuse as to why we're murdering something or other. "Point us at what needs to be stabbed or blown up and away we go!" Something to that effect. I love a great combat, but I think the game could be much more memorable if I could only capture the mood and gravity of each situation they are to face.
5. Downtime & using the fort? - Sort of a bonus point that I don't intend to focus on next session, but did you have your PCs take over operations of the fort or do something else interesting with it? It could make for a good session in the future if I had a solid idea on what to do.
Anyway, just looking for tips on how everyone ran the second half of the Hook Mountain Massacre. Please share your experiences!
I've always wanted to make a familiar that could actually wade into melee. Not particularly optimal, but I think it can be done?
A familiar's BAB, saves and HP are determined by what the master has so a class like a Paladin would be very suitable for good BAB, saves, and HP. So Eldritch Heritage for the Arcane bloodline, and then pick up a strong familiar from Improved Familiar like Earth Elemental and go to town. Then pick up other feats to power him up, like Evolved Familiar (If you can find a decent quadruped, picking up pounce with Evolved Familiar seems like a nice acquisition) and Celestial Servant (Celestial Servant is a VERY nice defensive AND power post; your familiar can “Smite Evil” right along with you!)
Mithral armor is, by definition, always masterwork. The effects of masterwork is included. The armor check penalty is reduced by 3, not by 3+1.
If you look under the Adamantine entry, you'll find all the relevant text:
Cost Adamantine is so costly that weapons and armor made from it are always of masterwork quality; the masterwork cost is included in the prices given.
Adamantine is so costly that weapons and armor made from it are always of masterwork quality; the masterwork cost is included in the prices given. Thus, adamantine weapons and ammunition have a +1 enhancement bonus on attack rolls, and the armor check penalty of adamantine armor is lessened by 1 compared to ordinary armor of its type.
They weren't quite as explicit with Mithral, but you can presume it follows the same rule; the penalty reduction/bonuses are built into it.
Cost Weapons or armors fashioned from mithral are always masterwork items as well; the masterwork cost is included in the prices given below.
Spell failure chances for armors and shields made from mithral are decreased by 10%, maximum Dexterity bonuses are increased by 2, and armor check penalties are decreased by 3 (to a minimum of 0).
Aasimar Oracle of Life/Paladin with the Fey Foundling feat. I'd like to see them try to kill you or anyone in your party.
Zen Archer Monk/Inquisitor - Takes everything you love about the ZAM and take it up a notch! +Wis to init, knowledge checks, maybe take the conversion domain... Some decent spellcasting... Bane and Judgment make for some sweet bonuses to stack on top of your crazy amount of attacks each round. You get Stalwart at level 11 and could pick up a ring of evasion, so if you make the save, ignore all effects. Then be a dwarf with Hardy, Steel Soul, and Glory of Old... You're a monk, so all good saves, your most important stats are Wisdom, Con, and Dex, so again, your saves are good. Lots of synergy and power to make the ultimate archer in offense and defense.
It's actually only the first two levels you need to be concerned about; level 3 is when you get +Wis to atk rolls.
Sure, you won't be AMAZING in those first two levels, but even by level 2 you'll flurry for...
And Perfect Strike 2 times per day to roll twice and take the better result. Could be better, but worth enduring until level 3.
I wouldn't say Combat Reflexes is especially optimal... But I think it takes the character in an interesting different direction; I like characters that can gum up the battlefield a bit.
EDIT: Some people like to cut off at level 8 or so, or level 3-4 if going with a caster multi-class. But going ZAM for all 12 levels is perfectly respectable. Keep in mind the goodies you give up by multiclassing after level 8:
Level 9 Reflexive Shot, +10 movement speed
Level 10 Bonus Feat (Improved Critical?), Perfect Stike let's you roll three times and take the best result.
Level 11 Trick Shot
Level 12 Abundant Step, 2d6 unarmed damage, +1 to ac, +10 movement speed
Also you get less Perfect Strike attacks per day and less Ki in your Ki Pool.
So should you multiclass? Maybe. I'd stick with it, but I can see dipping elsewhere. I could see dipping into Inquisitor for +Wis to initiative, knowledge checks, and other skill checks, if you take certain inquisitions. Unfortunately one of the best class features, Bane, doesn't kick in until level 5, and you won't be seeing a ZAM 8/Inquisitor 5 in PFS. (You could try ZAM 3, 4, or 6 and then go Inquisitor if you really want to in PFS?)
Other solid classes include Weapon Master fighter (so you can get weapon training and qualify for gloves of dueling), 1 level of empyreal sorcerer into arcane archer... And as you mentioned cleric, if you want a little bit of casting utility without completely sacrificing your BAB progression. Probably some more, but that's off the top of my head.
I second the notion of sticking with your original stat array.
Ooh, another feat option might be combat reflexes, which you could even take at level 7, so you're free to take Hammer the Gap, etc at level 9. Combat Reflexes is nifty with Reflexive Shot.
Reflexive Shot (Ex):
At 9th level, a zen archer can make attacks of opportunity with arrows from his bow. The monk still threatens squares he could reach with unarmed strikes, and can still only make one attack of opportunity per round (unless he has Combat Reflexes). This ability replaces improved evasion.
And don't forget that Enlarge Person increases your unarmed strike reach (and by extension Reflexive Shot reach) by quite a bit!
Heh, I've been mulling over a Dwarf Zen Archer build over the past few days, and lo and behold here it is.
Definitely love that Steel Soul and Glory of Old to really frustrate those casters. I'd consider Improved Initiative and Toughness as feats for level 5 and 7. Or something like that. Just something to make your character better, since there's nothing you can do for archery with your normal feats, besides Deadly Aim, until you hit level 9. (It takes BAB +6 to qualify for Hammer the Gap or Clustered Shots)
Sometimes melee types take Iron Will when they have nothing better to do, but for you, you have a good will save, Wis as your main stat, and +5 (!) against spells. Yeesh, there's no such thing as too high a will save, but you're certainly getting close.
EDIT: Also, something I'd consider for a Zen Archer Dwarf is the racial trait Sky Sentinel.
As creatures with a deep affinity for the ground, dwarves are wary of attacks from above. Enemies on higher ground gain no attack roll bonus against dwarves with this racial trait, and they gain a +1 racial bonus on attack rolls, a +2 dodge bonus to AC, and a +2 bonus on Perception checks against flying creatures. This racial trait replaces defensive training, hatred, and stonecunning.
If you have no particular attachment to those racial abilities, I think this is a good trade; flying creatures are common enough and it's sort of fitting that an archer would be a pro at shooting things out of the sky, so there's that.
Divination (Foresight) gives you the most powerful class abilities, for sure, but Conjuration (Teleportation) is quite nice too.
...and in terms of conjuration spells vs. divination spells? No contest. That's not to say that divinations are necessarily bad, it's just that putting one at every level of memorization every day is a bit too much.
There's also an easy to miss rule; remember that you get to learn 2 spells for free every level? 1 of them has to be from your specialization, so as a Diviner, you have to pick up a divination spell at every single level. Doing that as a conjurer is quite easy; you usually want another conjuration spell every level.
However, that doesn't mean that Diviners are bad, just know what you're getting into. One thing I liked doing with my diviner was taking Preferred Spell so I could sacrifice unused divinations to spontaneously cast something else. In my case, I picked fireball; might not be optimal, but choosing a good non-blast spell is difficult. One perk is that you never actually have to prepare a blast; only prepare God spells and switch to blast after you've fulfilled your "God" duties. And picking up Dazing Spell later on could lessen its Un-"god"-liness?
Anyway, just my 2cp on the differences in the specializations.
I think the Zen Archer is going to get you better results. It just gives you so much stuff for free.
Point Blank Master, Weapon Focus, Weapon Specialization, Perfect Strike, add wisdom to attack rolls... And all of your monk bonus feats can go into Archery. (And give you early access)
With all of that, you're free to take other feats. Toughness, Improved Initiative, if you're a dwarf, Steel Soul... You really get to beef up your character in other ways. You'll only occasionally need to spend your normal feats on archery; namely Deadly Aim. Clustered Shots and Hammer the Gap might be nice later on.
A Sohei doesn't get those bonus archery feats and can't use his monk feats to advance archery. And being able to take Many shot and Rapid shot isn't that amazing when you already have so many attacks. Who wants to add more penalties when you're already firing 5 shots/round by level 8. (6 with haste) And you don't exactly have feats to spare to waste on Manyshot and Rapid Shot.
Maybe at much, much higher levels they become more comparable, but for the first... probably at least 12 levels, Zen Archer is ahead by quite a lot in terms of archery.
Magic Missile does the same amount of damage, except a level earlier. (5d4+5 is basically the same as 5d6 damage)but never fails. And I think force is a little better than sonic.
Ear piercing scream does the same damage but inconsistently. Good Fort Saves are quite common, so you'll often fail and deal half damage. However, dazing an opponent for 1 round is very nice, basically shutting them down.
I'd probably use Ear-piercing scream for an Evoker taking Spell Focus and GSF. But I wouldn't call it overpowered. I've seen it in action too many times to think of it as broken.
There is a feat called Channeled Revival:
Pathfinder Design Team wrote:
I quoted the FAQ just in case that was ambiguous; you can use it at channel range. So hopefully that works? You can always adapt it if it doesn't quite serve your purposes.
Options = Power - 3rd Party gives you a lot more options.
Balance - Although Paizo doesn't perfectly balance the game, (impossible) we've grown to trust their judgment on what's fair. Most 3rd party stuff is balanced, some isn't.
That said, our group tends to allow 3rd party and homebrew stuff in our games. But unlike the Paizo core (Core, APG, ARG, UM, UC) it requires GM approval. It's almost always approved, although occasionally nerf'd.
It's a tough call; 5 prescience rolls vs. 10 HP? I know there will be times where you'd rather have the HP, but the prescience rolls are so cool...
Perhaps an important question:
Does your elf use a longbow? Or often use spells with attack rolls? Do you come across Spell Resistance often? Those are definitely considerations. The more uses beyond boosting your saving throws, the better!
You just gave me an idea for my own homebrew; a metamagic that turns Fireball into flaming wings. And then you can cast the fireball at any time, but it consumes the wings. Probably have you float down as Fly after you turn the wings into a fireball.
Anyway, I think the spells look reasonable. I'm not quite sure what the secondary wing attacks will do, presuming you're a wizard or similarly "bad at attacking" class. And since it has a range of personal, rather than fly, you wouldn't be able to give it to a friend. Then again, this is homebrew, so I'm guessing it could serve a purpose in your game. Overall, has some perks over Fly, but doesn't replace it. (Does this spell have you float down like fly when it ends? Or do you just start falling? If it doesn't, be sure to have feather fall!)
The fireball is strong; but about as strong as I would expect from a 5th level spell? I always found Cone of Cold disappointing for the level, so this seems good. Comparing it to evocations like Icy Prison that's also at 5th level and Cold Ice Strike at 6th level, it seems reasonable. Although I'm curious how that fireball would function under an admixture evoker; would the immunity piercing also change elements? Or does that only function in it's original form?
Ooh, another particularly rule of cool one that my friend started, but I expanded upon:
Silent Spell + Still Spell + Eschew Materials + Invisible Spell (from 3.5) + Preferred Spell (You don't need a spellbook) - All of these are free to add on, thanks to arcane thesis. So you're bound and gagged and all of a sudden, stuff is in flames.
Although it's an expensive trick to prepare for that unlikely scenario. >_>;
I’m playing in a campaign where my GM is giving me tremendous latitude in swapping out class features and allowing me to research metamagic feats for 5k (normal or homebrew). I was even allowed to take Arcane Thesis from 3.5. (And combine it with Pathfinder's Magical Lineage and Preferred Spell!)
Now, the character is already fairly powerful, but I still have quite a bit of flexibility to make my character more awesome. I’m not looking for “Ignore elemental resistance and immunity” or “Opponents automatically fail their save” or something stupid like that, I’m looking at ways to make my spells seem more awesome.
Any number of targets within the radius of your fireball are affected by prestidigitation or other minor effect.
Mechanical benefits are fine, so long as it isn't some pure damage increase.
A creature affected by Rime Spell and Focused Spell (admixture to Cold damage, then two +1 metamagics; remember, Arcane Thesis) is trapped within ice for a number of rounds equal to twice the level of this spell. A successful save negates this effect. This is as Icy Prison except the hit points of the ice is 2 HP per inch, the DC of the strength check is 10 + the spell level + caster level, and the creature takes no further damage while trapped within.
It could remake you assumptions about the spell.
Choose one spell; you can use your arcane bond as a focus for your spell instead of the normal material component, and you gain X mechanical benefit.
A micro spell is treated as a 1st level spell for all purposes, has a reduced range of close, a reduced radius of 5ft, and all variable damage becomes the minimum amount. (Ex. 6d6 becomes 6 damage) A micro spell uses up a spell slot two levels lower than the spell’s actual level.
So... how would you stylize your spells if you had your GM's blessings?