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If going the teamwork feats route, you can pick up Coordinated Charge at level 10 allowing you to have a ghetto pounce by letting your familiar always charge first.
It is kind of better than pounce when things work out, since you also get an extra attack in with the charge.
Might be a bit funky at the start of a fight, since you have to synch up initiative though (typically, one of you have to choose to delay so that you act together in the right order).
But hey, spend the first turn hanging back while getting buffed/avoiding caster explosions and taking advantage of dazzling display/disheartening display. So not the worst thing in the world, since you still have options.
Oh, wait, sorry... we were talking about the sacred fist? I was going on about how the irorian was poor with unarmed Sorry about that.
Yeah, flurry is a thing (the TWF support I was talking about.) But again, I can make other builds that can work just as well (under good conditions, I can make something with up to 10 reach attacks with the paladin in two rounds, the majority of which are at full BAB or BAB-5; it can be comparable to pummel/pounce in that regard)
....? I think we are reading this differently.
Familiar Folio wrote:
it can use any combat feat possessed by the eldritch guardian
It doesn't say bonus feats, just 'combat feats'. Which comprise a very, very large portion of all feats. It looks like you could use any combat feat you have, even if it was taken through your level feats, or if you get them from other classes. So while your pickings are slim at first, you cans till get 3 running by level 3, if you wanted to.
Anyway...why? Well, for one, you can take complete and utter advantage of teamwork feats. A lot of those are combat feats. Even if you just get a small little flank buddy (A bit of a waste; I would go with an earth elemental armed with simple weapons an 0 ACP armor myself), then they can do a massive boost for you. And from the looks of it, you might be able to take advantage of coordinated charge to get a pseudo pounce going on (charge as an immediate action with teammate charges; movement outside of your turn and leaves you next to the target, ready to full attack)
Also, the new disheartening display feat from ACG looks amazing. It takes dazzling display, and remove the limits on it. You can just stack and stack up feat effects. With two of you doing it, you can have all enemies in a 30' radius frightened and running before they even get a chance to move.
...a complete and utter lack of support for TWF, which is fairly important for a high damage unarmed build? The only thing it really has going for it is the divine bond and greater magic weapon spell for enhancement bonuses. The lack of bonus feats and the need for high dex can be a major problem (the irorian does not actually benefit from high dex, since it adds CHA to dex for AC, and thus hits up against max dex on armor fairly easily)
Rangers with a single level of monk are far, far more effective at doing unarmed than this paladin archetype. Same access to an enhancement spell (greater magic fang), and it gets tons of TWF feats (which also support a strength based build).
Also, while pummeling charge is nice, I have fallen in love with reach when you add the right feats in to control distance with your opponent. And if you throw in a fortuitous weapon (1/turn, it lets you get a set of Bab-0/BAB-5 attacks off against a single action; a mini full attack as an AoO)... there are options basically.
Debra Zicht wrote:
Ah..but if you do both, it is a 20% bonus on will.
The thing with making up for a weak save (particularly in will, since a lot of characters can't afford decent wisdom since it only really contributes to will) is that you are not going for a single big solution necessarily. You build up from a lot of small solutions.
Now, admittedly, you can do well with just the cloak. It covers the saves....for now. It is perfectly acceptable to take the cloak and free feat now, and spend on iron will later once the gap in saves becomes more noticeable. I tend to go with heavy front loading (since I like my fighters to make the caster cleric jealous), but that is just personal preference as a 'might as well get it over with' kind of thing.
It can still be a nice archetype though. It doesn't work well with unarmed strikes...but little actually binds it to them (besides the divine bond replacements...and oaths can actually work with that)
If you just grab light armor, a nice 2 handed weapon, and enough CHA, and you can run around as a paladin with a good touch AC and speed.
You keep the lay on hands feature and the CHA to saves feature, and CHA to AC makes up for the change in armor. So you can be just as much of a tank as before. The substitute for smite has less of the extreme highs, but its flexibility lets it work well in more morally ambiguous campaigns (the ability to ignore hardness works great in Iron Gods adventure path, and the flexibility works well against neutral constructs).
Nature soul+animal ally+boon companion?
That gives you a full scaling animal companion (similar to a ranger in mechanics). Get a horse/large wolf, and have fun with it.
You could also theoretically get the undersized mount feat, and grab a mauler archetype familiar through the eldritch guardian archetype.
Oh, I noticed that there are some interesting slayer exclusive feats
Killing Flourish is basically the same as dreadful carnage, only you get it WAY earlier (4-5th level vs 11). It lets you try to demoralize all enemies in a 30' radius after you get an enemy below 0 hp. There is a prerequisite feat (intimidating prowess)...but that is a nice feat to have for an intimidate build anyway (both STR and CHA on that skill? Cool).
Gruesome Finish builds on Killing Flourish. With all the enemies you demoralize with that feat, you also force them to make a fort save (10+1/2 your level+strength or dex; pretty nice number) or they get sickened. Since this requires the enemy to already be shaken, that means a total of -4 to attack, saves, and skills that can happen to anything in a 60' wide circle.
So overall, these are pretty good. It lets you do a major AoE debuff while you are going about your normal business (and since the second feat comes after you get the assassinate ability....imagine that as a way to open a fight, just taking someone's head off)
And certainly a fair argument for stats, since I was kind of worried about will saves...
Oh, and thinking about AC... dodge might not be a terrible feat for you. It doesn't add too much, but hey, it is a prerequisite for a lot of other things. Mobility isn't terrible either since you may wish to move into flanking position for sneak attack damage (mostly so you don't have to take acrobatics though, since you probably want to load up on all the skills that get studied target bonuses)
You won't need a 16 Dex if you're making use of the ranger feats. Starting as low as 13 means that a +2 Dexterity enhancement bonus qualifies you for Double Slice, and you can grab Two-Weapon Fighting and Improved Two-Weapon Fighting, along with Two-Weapon Rend. Greater Two-Weapon Fighting is not really worth it.
Well, I only suggested 16 because it was a 25 pt buy, moafnsteel wanted high dex for stealth, and there were enough tangential benefits (more AC, which is nice for the light/medium armored slayer)
I would hold off on grabbing double slice, since it only adds 1/2 strength to offhand attacks. Maybe later levels after grabbing improved TWF and you have a nice +X STR belt to get enough strength to justify the feat.
Well, with the slayer talent that gives you ranger style feats, you can just grab TWF, Improved TWF, and Two weapon rend (better than the BAB-12 hit given by greater TWF). That covers most of what you need.
I am not going to speak against the choice of weapon (it is all about your tastes), but I will advocate the cestus, mostly because you never have to draw them and they hardly interfere with most actions. But this is just me and my preferences.
A nice basic set of stats on a 25 pt buy would look like this:
Any particular focus on race? If not, I always like half elves or half orcs for martial characters like this. Half elves have a racial trait that gives +2 to will saves (and another +2 vs enchantment effects, which are the major will saves) and half orcs have the tattoo trait that gives +1 luck bonus to all saves (and that can be boosted further with the fate's favored trait). With either of those, it would not be too hard to shore up your weak will save.
Yeah, its true value shines with reach weapons (or with large things, like druids).
Normally, with a reach weapon, when you attack an enemy, they end up 10' away. That means that they only need a 5' step to get to you. So they get their full attack and you do not get an AoO (and makes it so that you can't attack first and still get an AoO).
With lunge, enemies end up 15' away. Many will have to move 10' to reach you, and they will usually lose their full attack and draw an AoO. That is offense and defense in one. You can attack first, and still get in those sweet, sweet extra attacks from AoOs (which can be amazing with a fortuitous weapon, which gives you a mini fill attack through AoOs 1/round)
Pair it with pushing assault (take a 5' step back, full attack, push them back 5', and leave them in that 15' sweet spot), and you can completely rock single combat.
And even when you can't get all this control based fun (giants for example), you can still enjoy full attacking anything in a 45' wide circle.
Not necessarily. Against anything immune to bleed (or has fast healing), then boar style loses some of its edge.
Plus, it makes it harder to take pummeling style. I bring that up because, even with the delay since you are not a monk/brawler, that is still the perfect style for unarmed builds. Hell, even more so for non monk/brawlers (since it lets you forget about DR for the most part; DR/20 is DR/3 against 7 attacks- you could honestly just get greater magic weapon cast on you instead of going for the amulet of mighty fists)
I know a MoMS dip lets you get multiple styles up...but that takes multiple swift actions, and the slayer has more important things to do with those swift actions
As a slayer can't you pick up the ranger style that gives you monk unarmed damage progression (irori's) to emulate your fists being stronger than weapons(eventually)?
Yeah, probably, but I always found the irori style rather dubious. It lacks TWF feats past the first one.
I think that getting another hit in with Improved TWF (which is great for a class with static bonuses on every hit, like slayers) or the extra umph from Two weapon rend would serve you a lot more than just getting the few extra average point on weapon damage dice.
Also, you would have to take a lot of the style feats using normal feats anyway just to get the character online. So you would not get much from the style besides monastic legacy.
The feat is worth it. And the trait is worth it. And a 12 WIS/8 CHA. And maybe going with a nice will boosting race (half orc with tattoo and fate's favored, or half elf with dual minded). Putting all that together, you can go from having a weak will save to beating out the caster cleric early on, and still doing better than an uninvested wizard later.
This all applies for fighters/rogues/rangers/ cavaliers/alchemist/ brawler/slayer/swashbuckler/ whatever, of course.
You could also go with a huntmaster, and get either a bird or a dog instead of a mount.
The fun part about huntmaster is that your animal companion gets to benefit from your challenge as well. Imagine how damaging that could make a nice hawk?
For battlefield control, go with the nice, basic go to for martials- reach build.
A fortuitous weapon makes that extremely effective. This +1 weapon property lets you get 2 AoOs in for the same action (one at full BAB, one at BAB-5; a mini full attack in AoOs basically). This makes getting past your 25' wide circle of pain an extremely serious issue.
For feats, besides the usual power attack and combat reflexes, I am going to suggest lunge and pushing assault.
Normally, when you attack an enemy with a reach weapon, they end up 10' away, and they only need a 5' step to reach you (so they get their full attack and avoid your AoO). If you engage first, you do not get an AoO.
With lunge, enemies end up 15' away. Most will have to move 10', losing their full attack and drawing an AoO. This is good offense and defense. It can also allow you to attack first and still get you AoO (or two, with fortuitous).
Pushing assault fulfills a similar role- if an enemy gets next to you, take a 5' step back, full attack, and push the enemy 5' back. Now, the enemy is 15' away, and thus in that sweet spot where it will likely draw another AoO.
Even when all these tricks fail to work (Rune lords does have a lot of giants...), you can still benefit from lunge's original purpose- you can full attack anything in a 45' wide circle, and avoid drawing AoOs yourself when attacking giants. Nice for a martial, no?
Androids might not be that bad if you are playing a fort/reflex race, since their resistance to mind affecting effects shores up their will save.
Light shields, the basic version of the shield that is a light weapon, and thus the one that gets used in TWF, has an ACP of -1.
The quickdraw light shield has -2...but that is not quite as important for dex based TWF builds (no weapons to 2 hand, and light shields in general leave your hand open for things like grabbing potions or wands)
And Rynjin- light shields and bucklers leave your hand open. So you should still be able to lay on hands with them, as far as I am aware.
Ah, for a paladin (and not doing the brawler dip thing)... you could go with a quick draw shield and get the quick draw feat. I doubt you can go with very many shenanigans like 2 handing and then getting the shield (I would imagine that is the kind of thing that gets lengthy rules threads about it), but it provides you options.
Grab a long sword/scimitar, and decide whether you want more offense or defense that round. If you are smiting, then don't worry about the damage too much and just tank (you are a threat enough anyway).
Either that, or go with the daring champion cavalier. I know suggesting a different class is rather rude, but it is rather similar to paladin with its challenges, and this archetype gets the swashbuckler-y bits that encourage sword and board.
Also- shroudb- there is a reason why we forget about that. ACP of most shields drops to 0 once you get into masterwork (which is easier to get with shields than weapons). Since you are discussing finesse TWF, then there are pretty much no shield that such a build would want to use that would actually encounter this problem after the first couple of levels.
Eh, Claxon I think that the traditional view of sword and board is becoming a bit behind the current material.
As I said, brawlers can do TWF with a single weapon and still use a shield through their flurry. Take it as a 2 level dip, and then go into a TWF friendly class (like ranger or slayer, which can continue the TWF feats without the need for high dex) and you can go around flurrying with a nice weapon instead of having to shield bash.
With butterfly swords and nine ring swords as martial weapons, you do not have to sacrifice style or power.
Lord Fyre wrote:
I know that this is pretty much the whole shtick with them, but I still felt it needed to be said.
I would say that empathy is not worth it. Besides the fact that it needs a huge amount of CHA for a -2 CHA race, it also removes your defenses against fear and mind affecting effects. I did not focus on that since the trade off is a bit too much in my mind. It is a feat that mostly just seems to be for android bloodragers.
Typically, you want to have a large bonus on your weapon's attack that helps to make up for the lack of 2 handing.
The swashbuckler is pretty much designed around this- it gives you extra damage equal to your swashbuckler level, but only when 1 handing a single weapon. The bonus puts you on par with a 2 handed power attack by a full martial with good strength. Thus, you can feel secure while using your buckler.
Another thing you could do would be to play a brawler. Their flurry attack, unlike with monks, can be used with shields (you lose out on the scaling bonus to AC...but shield AC is usually better; just drop the shield if you have to worry about touch AC). So, just get a nice monk/close weapon in your other hand, and deal TWF style damage (with the added bonus that you get TWF damage while only having to buy 1 weapon). Note- this works well as a 2 level dip for other classes.
Well, they are immune to fear, exhaustion, fatigue, sleep, and disease, and they have the ability to add 4-23 to any d20 roll 1/day. They also get a rather large +4 bonus against mind affecting effects.
The only downsides is that they cannot get morale bonuses and they are bad at sense motive. So no savy barbarians, and a few buff spells do not work on you. It still sounds like a good deal overall.
Instead of trying to make a customized low level sunblade, how about we use a preexisting property- Glorious
It is a +2 property...which means it is on a minimum of a +3 weapon (so 18,000 price tag). Now, that might sound like a bit much...but the weapon property does 2 things mainly- give sunlight and dazzle on a hit. Given that there is a feat that does the second part already (spear dancer)... not that amazing.
There is the bit about blinding on a crit...but weapon choice of a x2 weapon can solve that.
If we are really worried about the price...you could make it fragile. Make it break and make it lose its magical power if they roll a 1. That means they have to make a choice- just use it like a fancy torch, or use its nice ability at the risk of losing the thing entirely.
Paladin of Baha-who? wrote:
The Double sword is useful for being able to be used two-handed in circumstances when you can't do a full attack. Its downside is that it's exotic and uses a feat.
One way of getting a double weapon is to get it through race. Half-orcs and dwarves tend to be favorable for this, especially since they have save increasing options.
Well, I am not familiar with the set up, but I can imagine a few reasons why.
Maybe this wizard is a contractor instead of an actual part of the country/army. Maybe he is a political power in his own right (not uncommon for level 20 wizards) and he expects a heavy price for his services. Powerful wizards are also often known for having.... difficult... personalities.
Using the flashy and direct magics (particularly when they put him in the line of fire, or have him directly responsible for the damage, which puts the spot light on him when it comes time for revenge) comes with a large price. Do you honestly want to owe someone that powerful a favor? That is a good way to become a puppet nation.
With this kind of set up, you can have the wizard shaping the battle field in your favor, but it still comes down to your loyal troops doing the actual acts.
94) Part of your disguise
Would that involve skinning them and making them into a goblin suit, or would that involve taping them to you, and pretending you are a baby goblin swarm?
Raising the goblins could very well be done in a setting like Kingmaker, where there are long downtime periods between some adventures. I guess the vitriolic responses just go to show how narrowminded some folks can be.
Well, the phrase 'baby goblins' is used, predominantly, on this board as an example of a moral problem presented by GMs in campaigns where the party clearly cannot spend that kind of time (racing to search for a hidden artifact before Dr. EVIL does).
It is often used in 'paladin falls' threads as well, since the issue can vary wildly depending on interpretation and the assumption of inborn evil by either the player of GM. If the player assumes and the GM doesn't, then the paladin falls because they killed an innocent creature. If the GM assumes inborn evil and the player doesn't, the the paladin falls because they let an evil creature go away to threaten innocents in the future. If the GM is out to get the paladin, then there is no win scenario.
In both cases, the players feel attacked, and they come to resent that. Thus, they lash out.
Also, this is fun. Again, the gods award style points.
So a 20th level wizard's services come at a premium, either in money or the threat of giving him influence. Cool, fair enough.
With demiplane, you could put a large amount of supplies that that are secure. That can help reduce your need for a supply train, which means you can travel light and fast.
Also, if you make it a minor positive dominant plane, then you can give any creature fast healing 2 while in the plane. That can turn it into a medic station. Who needs clerics to serve as healbots? This is fast, efficient, and uses minimal resources.
Plus- everything is just plain better on a positive energy plane- brighter colors, warmer fires, all sensations are more intense (better food; better...company... yeah, you could have that going on in a demiplane). Great for morale.
Calling/use gate to get disruptive outsiders to act as guerrillas that delay the enemy troops.
Symbol of strife- get that into the middle of an enemy formation, and they will fight among themselves. This means 20 rounds enenmies attacking eachother, and the symbol lasts for over 3 hours. This can be used as a trap that blocks off enemy movement (since they can't bring a large number of troops into the area).
Cursed earth to cause any who die in the area to rise as zombies in 24 hours. Even if they destroy the bodies to prevent this, that is still time they are not preparing proper defenses.
Salvage- destroy their ships, and then make them your own later on.
Clone- get back up commanders for your armies. Helps maintain the chain of command, which helps keep up momentum.
Sympathy/Antipathy on particular areas (like castle gates) that distracts them.
Stone to flesh- turn the castle wall into something that is much easier to dig through.
Move earth- dig trenches and make hills. Destroy trenches and hills. Fill in moats. This spell is pretty much designed with your scenario in mind (too slow to trap or bury, and explicitly says it is for this stuff)
Anyway- I think thinking small is cooler. Having an instant solution just takes the fun out of it. Rather than instantly capturing the king, I want a chess game where my opponent can just decide that I can't move through a 9 square square because a giant pillar of fire showed up. That my bishop now moves like a rook because of mind alteration. That there is now a tunnel to the back that I have to defend against. That his knights are flying for the next 3 turns and can't be captured (but can't capture themselves).
All that, and a lot of the move egregious instant 'I win' scenarios might have counters with magic (there are a bunch of anti teleporting spells, for instance). Overall, just assume rule of cool, and try to get tricky people.
Another idea would be to use pushing assault.
Get a full attack, and then push the enemy with maybe the BAB-5 hit. Now the enemy ends up 15' feet away. Thus, they might well have to waste a move walking to you again (and they draw an AoO).
The beauty of this is that you can play a game of keep away like this- they get next to you, you take a 5' step back, you push them, and they have to move next to you again to attack. Most character will only get 1 attack on your during this, while you get your full attack and an AoO (maybe two, if you have a fortuitous weapon).
I also like lunge, since it lets you move up to an enemy and get them into the 15' range (or heck, 20' with pushing assault). It also lets you full attack anything in a 45' wide circle. Tons of fun.
Iris Lemell wrote:
Since nonoracle levels count for 1/2, the penalties for being death is merely -2 to initiative, and -1 to perception (although you might miss the big obvious BOOM when a creature knocks something over around the corner, for example- but hey, eidolon can deal with that and clue you in).
Again, you can lip read with 1 rank linguistics (and you generally want at least a few ranks linguistics anyway, since it helps with summons; elemental languages like the ones for earth and air can be great for scouting with your minute/level SLAs). So overall, with the free constant silent spell and maybe improved initiative, you can cover the problems with being deaf.
How about a nice reach weapon? 2 handed goodness, and you can still take advantage of your studied target bonuses through the extra AoO attacks. Particularly if you get the fortutitous property (you get two attacks, one at BAB-5, for the same AoO; basically a small full attack on an AoO).
A good system would be to add lunge and pushing assault on top of the normal power attack/combat reflexes combo.
Normally, when you attack an enemy with a reach weapon, you leave them 10' away. Thus, they only need a 5' step to reach you (and thus they get their full attack and they avoid an AoO). With lunge, however, you leave enemies 15' away from you, which means they may well have to mvoe 10' to reach you (and thus they draw an AoO and most likely lose their full attack).
Pushing Assault fulfills a similar purpose- if an enemy gets next to you, you can just take a 5' step back, and then full attack and push them to the 15' mark. Again, if they try to attack you, you get an AoO.
Oh, and another advantage of lunge on a reach weapon- you can full attack anything in a 45' circle. That means you can accomplish more full attacks, and thus get more studied target damage in.
Anyway, for styles, the basic 2 handed style or the Lamashtu style work, since they both give pushing assault at level 2. With lunge showing up at level 7 (when you can swift action study)...yeah, you can pull this off fairly early. Cayden gives combat reflexes and lunge though....
The same description uses the term 'fingerless'.
Have you actually seen a pata? Just check out the example in this wiki entry. It is hardly different from the scizore.
You could argue that since the finger side is left exposed, it could work like a buckler.... but bucklers have special rules that let you hold things at the same time (in contrast to the heavy shield). And since there are also examples of weapons that have to specifically allow you to hold things at the same time (brass knuckles and cestus)... well, assume it works like any other weapon and that your hand is occupied.
How about we avoid this whole issue? There is a magical weapon property that solves this issue....and it is a straight gold cost rather than an extra enhancement bonus.
Adaptive is a straight +1000 gp enhancement that makes your bow act like it was an appropriate strength rating. This means you just have to spend an extra +500 gp with the arcane bond. And this does not affect the cost for regular enhancements at all. Just a simple one time price.
Anyway, back to the main issue: how about a dawnflower dervish bard? It gets double on performances like inspire courage, but those bonuses only work on itself. Not quite the same party buffer...but I mean... that puts inspire courage on par with rage at level 1, and you eventually get a +8 to attack and damage.
This works great for an archer (I know the archetype supports dervish dance...but those sweet, sweet static bonuses are wasted on a style that doesn't get a ton of hits like archery or TWF)
...only just noticed the penalty to CHA now. And it makes the Fanglord (weretiger one) ridiculous, since it gets a +2 to CHA. And the CHA bit is the one that only comes up when it is transformed.
So its states are +2 Dex -2 Wis -2 CHA. Which makes it totally useless for the bardish/sorcerish role that its intended stats give (similar to catfolk). It might as well not even transform really.
And the way it is worded...these penalties come into play when interacting with nonshape changing humanoids. Does that mean its stats jump from +2 to -2 when people are around? Is having a human around a serious nerf to a fanglord sorcerer's spellcasting? Did the fanglord get nervous that girls are watching?
If it was just the -4 to checks, then it would be fine. Having your fangs put is not a good way to have diplomacy (although it should work fine for intimidate; again, fanglord has a lot of feats that use intimidate). Just make yourself presentable. But the actual stat change is a severe penalty.
I seriously hope this is just a misprint and it should have said 'charisma based skills and charisma based checks'. Because that seems like it is what was supposed to be there (again, not going to say it is unilaterally right for all cha skills, but I get the general principle)
Mostly just the scizore, which has you sticking your arm into a tube that has a crescent shaped blade on a stick at the end of it.
Technically, that weapon your described is a type of katar (punch dagger within the system).
Maybe a pata (similar to katar, but studier, having the blade attatched to a gauntlet like handle.
Just a note- all three of these are pure piercing weapons.
Take an oracle dip. The deaf curse lets you apply the silent spell metamagic to your spells without increasing spell level or casting time (because otherwise, the curse would impose a terrible failure chance on all your spells)
Unless that only applies to oracle spells. I haven't seen anything that says that, and the language of the curse is open enough to apply to multiclassing...I will leave this issue to more experienced forum members.
Anyway, besides the fact that it delays your summoner stuff a level, it pretty much changes nothing about the play style you wanted. Note- PFS has established the practice of letting you read lips for languages you know if you have a rank in linguistics. Not a fully established rule in the system, but it is a common law practice basically.
The T-rex is CR 9 despite having 18 HD. Because it is a big dumb lizard without too many special abilities or spell casting to speak of.
Spellcasting makes a big difference in power. The typical melee response is to deal so much damage at the start that spells are not used. That tactic is invalidated with dragons, who are powerful enough to survive an initial burst of damage. Thus, you have to actually deal with the spell casting.
Ergo, learning how to deal with the spellcasting helps make this more of a giant lizard fight.
Don't forget a degree of reach and often the natural ability to fly (without all that casting nonsense beforehand).
You can't take advantage of the squishy nature of most casters here.
Eh. Ignoring the rogue (we all know how this forum feels about that), this hardly invalidates the core classes.
You just haven't looked at the cool things that ACG brought that everyone can use.
I particularly love the fortuitous weapon property, which greatly powers up 2 handed reach builds. Fighters are still strong choices for that (particularly since you can focus on other combat roles at the same time with all your feats)
Oh, and I have been looking into disheartening display to make intimidation builds that synergize with the new eldritch guardian from familiar folio. Getting enemies to a frightened state before anyone even moves can be sweet.
And fighters got new archetypes like the mutagenic warrior, which gave flight and more +'s through mutagens. So that is very much in line with the 'tweaks' from archetypes that you wanted.
Unless you are only fighting very young dragons or linnorum, then you are facing full on spellcasters. That is one of their main threats- they are both physically powerful and extremely magical.
If you aren't prepared to face a caster, how can you face one that can rip your face off?
Even the random symbols and constructs can be chalked up to 'bored dragons' (which again, are bored casters with a lot of time on their hands and few natural predators), and as such something you need to prepare for.