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Demon Slayer

master_marshmallow's page

5,108 posts (5,166 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 6 aliases.


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Builder a halfling charger is actually pretty good.

The lance is designed to be the best weapon for this, you just have to understand where the damage comes from. You're gonna want flat bonuses, so a paladin or a cavalier would be ideal. I would'nt worry too much over STR being the highest it could possibly be, so long as you get enough for Power Attack. Investing into a 14 would probably be the sweet spot.

Building for the lance can give you some of the best consistent damage in the game, but I would make sure you take a mount that is maneuverable. I would focus on the Spirited Charge chain for that sweet triple damage. Ultimately, you'll want one of these, as it saves you money from having to invest in your own STR, and you can instead focus on your mount's.

What is your CHA? Does Armed Bravery do anything for you that Improved Bravery (Ultimate Intrigue) does not?

Redblade8 wrote:


You talk about the dorn-dergar, and how the AA2 book gave this weapon new life. Can you elaborate? I see you gave the Darting Viper feat a purple rating, but IIRC that's always been around. If you could explain I'd love to hear it.


Dwarves of Golarion was in that grey area where Paizo was still putting out 3.5 stuff, so I didn't originally include those feats.

With the reprints, I am much more comfortable recommending them to players to not have to have that talk with their DM first, about what was and wasn't PFRPG material vs. Golarion/Paizo material.

Juda de Kerioth wrote:
taks wrote:
swoosh wrote:
taks wrote:
I ban it, but only because we use mostly Paizo published material. It would take too much work to balance, IMO.
I agree. I actually can't even see how you could balance it. Like what could you do to the Oracle to bring it down to the Stalker's level comparatively? Beats me.

No idea. What I do know is that Paizo material was written with Paizo material in mind. I simply don't have time to go through and figure out which rules are compatible on top of the already 1500 or so feats, 45+ classes, and myriad other rules. Your incredulity is rather absurd.

Edit: note, too, that I have access to the majority of Paizo's rules, in my possession, which is not true of third party rules.

The whole thing with compatibility was absurd at the begining, you as a gm need to do a lot of research when one thing from 3.5 comes to your table.

There are a lot of archetypes doing abilities that were feats in that edition.

also, rogue talents have some of the older feats in it. So, compatibility is a falacy to me. At least for feats.

For prestige classes is kind of the same, there are archetypes doing kind of the same abilities, if you allow them without double check, you will end in a place you dont want to be in the first place

In general at my table I follow this same premise, I do feats on a case by case basis, only after making sure there is not Pathfinder equivalent ability replicated somewhere (there are some very balanced gems out there), but normally I'll give a pass to magic items (specifically weapon and armor enhancements) and spells whose only reason for not existing seems to be closed content problems. And in those scenarios, any Pathfinder update for something comparable will be considered first. Such as Dispelling Touch from 3.5's PHBII needing to actually be worse than PFRPG's Dispel Magic in a way other than being a touch spell.

Some feats, given the existence of certain PFRPG abilities, are still considerably broken (Battle Blessing, Divine Metamagic, etc.).

Honestly, there are some Pathfinder updates that are worse than the 3.5 counterparts, like Magical Lineage being a trait, instead of a feat (Arcane Thesis) that requires you to be at least lvl 5 with full investment into Spellcraft (not that harsh of a restriction, but it did cost a feat instead of a trait.)

Mind flayers have come back in two forms, the Phrenic Scourge as previously linked (which seems to have a different source than Psionics Unleashed) and then there's the Thulid in the Book of Forbidden Lore which is more of a straight up conversion. You can find it for free online, using search-fu.

What do you need from this paladin? You will find shields and pumping your AC counter intuitive to your roll as the guy who takes hits if the enemies are discouraged from hitting you.

I'm a fan of the dorn dergar, with Adventurer's Armory 2 there's some feats now that can change the weapon into and out of a reach weapon for added versatility.

Crodge wrote:

Might I suggest adding the General Feat Sheltering Stubbornness from the Antihero’s Handbook:

Prerequisite: Iron Will.

Benefit: When you fail a saving throw against a mind-affecting effect with a duration of 1 round or longer (such as confusion), you can choose to be dazzled for the first round of the duration instead of suffering the usual effect.

On subsequent rounds, the effect functions normally. If an effect, immunity, or other ability prevents you from being dazzled, this feat has no effect.

I'll go through the book and see if there's anything else to add, it'll go in there.

Minor update: decisions were made, specific weapons are added, though I fear there are some I haven't found yet that may be worth noting.

Currently plugging away at the specific armors.

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The general rule is that all undead are evil, with a few specific exceptions in the bestiaries and APs.

However there are literary examples that one could cite as exceptions to the rule, which is what lead to all the jokes about a certain character whose literary purpose is to challenge the norm of accepting any particular creature's predesignated assumed alignment.

I'm sure there's more, but given our medium, these are I believe the most relevant.

For homebrew games, there are a few rules of thumb I like to follow:

1) leave stuff open ended: do NOT try and codify your entire game world as it will be challenged by the limitations of your own ability to read every book out there and your players will always find something that you feel should be allowed but you didn't prepare for.

2) skip the fluff on feats and traits: if your players want to make character concepts work, and there are mechanics that allow it then go for it, and fluff it in your own way as DM. Crunch is for the players, fluff is for you.

3) mix up the challenges, and try and include different variety of gameplay for each 'chapter' of your narrative: I do this by separating each chunk of the game into level based narrative progression, but I also do not use XP. I gate progression by the narrative. Try and include multiple challenges for the players including combat challenges; social/political skill challenges; and environmental/exploration skill challenges. Ideally, if you mix it up enough any player can have their moment to shine in each 'chapter' of the narrative regardless of 'class tier' perception. You want the players to feel like they're being rewarded for having a fully rounded team. At any point in the game, there should be a in-game mechanical way forward, either through a skill check, or some other rule that exists. Always be prepared through the mechanics of the game and not through some predesignated expectation from a narrative standpoint.

4) rule of three: for every non-combat challenge (and perhaps even some of those) make sure that in a broad sense there are at least three different ways to solve any puzzle/problem solving challenge you throw at them. The three pillars are straight ability checks (such as breaking down a door); skill checks (like picking the lock to open the door); or defaulting to spell checks (like expecting someone to cast knock to open the door). The players should feel like they were prepared to succeed, even if you as the DM had other ways out for them. This sorta goes along with rule 1. Do not rely on perception checks, if there is something the players need to find, let them find it. If they aren't succeeding at finding something on their own, introduce it to them, but make it funny.

5) understand the power cap: as you progress through the game, you must understand that certain challenges become pointless at mid to high levels. In a broad view of the game, notice that every 3 spell levels (character levels 1-5; 6-13; 14-20) the narrative power has a huge dynamic shift in what actually poses a problem to the players, vs a minor inconvenience. It is not wrong to have expectations of spell capability at higher levels, so players should need things like detect/dispel magic, teleport, and other such powerful spells when the game already expects them to be capable of it. Don't feel bad about players being under prepared, but don't expect anything too specific. Allowing access to things like scrolls or other mcguffin items to enable progress is your job when the players are otherwise too dumb to figure out what you thought was a simple puzzle.

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I'm a big fan of Protection, specifically the Defense Domain.

For domain spells, you pick up Shield and Barkskin, which means you have the capacity of being the very best power turtle you can be without spending money.

It also comes with a built-in Cloak of Resistance, which saves you money.

Shelyn is a goddess that offers it, and the Luck/Fate domains, additionally she has a Glaive as a favored weapon meaning you can make a reach cleric build using Bladed Brush and prioritizing DEX, which synergizes with Combat Reflexes, and reduces MAD.

It's the best cleric for beginners imo.

If you want to go ranged, I would recommend Erastil and taking the feat that swaps WIS with DEX for your to-hit with a bow. It also reduces MAD. Sadly, upon doing research for this post I have learned that Greater Status no longer exists in PFRPG. The feather subdomain gets you an animal companion, and a scaling racial bonus on Perception checks making you better than a rogue.

If you can manage to get the Stars Subdomain, then you get fly, overland flight, and the ability to spontaneously cast your stars domain spells if you prepared them while the stars are still out. As part of the void domain, you also get +2 insight on mind-affecting Will saves.

Rhedyn wrote:

The rules are very clear. Paladin class features are up to GM whims. Any other expectation is just being a munchkin.

ANY minor violation of an ambiguous code removes your class features and this was a deliberate change from previous editions. You want all the power of a paladin with none of the intended responsibility. You can't expect the GM to house rule in your favor. That's being a bad player. Which is evident by all the people here calling GMs bad if they don't change the game rules to cater to their vaguely good power fantasy.

All rules are GM whims.

Find a better argument.

I like Heighten Spell and Preferred Spell, for spontaneous casting. You can prepare utility spells, then recycle them with spell recall. If you take magical lineage and Wayang spell Hunter, you can apply both intensified and Elemental Spell at the same time, for a first level spell.

Ultimate Wilderness- added feats

Adventurer's Armory 2- added feats, new weapons, weapon modifications section, and armor modifications section

Magic armor special abilities and magic weapon special abilities have been gone through.

I have not done specific weapons or armor, and I'm not sure which ones are really necessary to cover.

Next step is Wondrous items, but I am unsure if I want/need to keep the fighter stuff separate, or just make sure that the items are made to catch enough attention.

136 pages and counting.

Paizo has a habit of creating classes for the purpose of filling multiclass niches.

You'll find a bunch of archetypes that exist for classes to simply trade one of their class features for one of another class.

You may want to look into 3.5 stuff, as there were a bunch of feats that more or less created these archetypes for you by telling you which class features would stack if you took said feat.

There really isn't as far as casting goes. You may find a couple of one or two level dips, but that's about it.

Scribe Scroll

One rank in each Knowledge is a good start.

From there, find the ones worth maxing out (arcana, local, or religion usually) and keep investing in them. The +4 from a single rank and class skill goes a long way when you get half ranks for free anyway.

Gnorr wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
shameless plug

That looks very interesting, many thanks for the pointer. With regard to my original goals, does your system help to speed-up combat? If yes, from your experience so far, by how much?

We are already using a slightly modified combat system, employing the Trailblazer (by Bad Axe Games) approach instead of iterative attacks. That is starting to help at higher levels (currently L15+ in one game).

Combat flows much faster, and player agency makes the game overall feel like there's less filler.

ohako wrote:
GonzDave wrote:
Ok, so a Bard seems to be the way to go. Should I pick up any of the Aasimar Bard Masterpieces?

You mean from Blood of Angels? As a group, they're actually really good in specific circumstances.

rondeau of Heavenly order can mess with enemies very far away, or if bad guys are trying to chase you through a marketplace.

symphony of Elysian heart is a very cheap mass freedom of movement, which is a very clean way to deal with terrain or grapples or all kinds of stuff

pallavi of Nirvana's blossoming kills vampires really well, messes with darkness effects, and causes gigantic movement headaches for your enemies. Keep in mind that there's an open question of whether you can start another performance while the effect of the pallavi is ongoing.

Keep in mind that if you take all 3, a) you'll be down 3 spells (which is why bardic masterpieces are best for human bards), and b) you either have to have ranks in Sing, Keyboard, Dance, or Sing, Wind, Dance. These 3 Perform types have complementary versatile performance interactions, but a) no string instrument performance, and b) concertina or ocarina while dancing the macarena?

I'd say pick one or two of your faves from these.

There's an alternate racial trait that lets you count as human, so you could still take the favored class bonus for them. It's something to consider.

Is there a specific reason for your domain choice?

I'll agree that Storm druid is the best choice for a caster focused druid, but i would recommend the Lightning domain instead. It'll give you shocking grasp and free empowers later on.

Extend Spell is too good on a druid, you have a lot of long duration buffs that you'll love to have extended. A rod is fine if you can afford it early enough.

If you want to be caster focused, I'd recommend Spell Focus and Greater Spell Focus, along with Spell Penetration and Greater Spell Penetration. You don't want your spells to be useless. Elemental Spell can also help with this build. Intensified spell can make those damage dealing spells a lot better.

If you're looking for a different trait, think of one of those domain spells to specialize in, probably lightning bolt, and take Magical Lineage on it.

Bard buff machine, the party won'y know how they got along without you.

You'll probably have to go with utility and support magic, depending on what role the sorcerer is playing.

I'd also endorse some skill investment, you may find those imoprtant since the party is all playing 2+int skill classes. Bardic Knowledge will be so useful to that party it's not even funny.

You can also go the debuff route if the party is doing well on damage without you. Dazzling Display etc. can be a good first turn in combat that doesn't waste spell slots.

tl;dr bard is the way to go.

A dwarf fighter can make for an impressive Anti-Mage.

You'll want to make sure that you know how the Stamina rules work, since you can get a lot of mileage from them for this. Otherwise, take the Disruptive and Spellbreaker feats. On their own they're not that great, but you can threaten more with the Stamina system.

Since you're a dwarf, you can definitely take Shatterspell, which is Spell Sunder, but for fighters. Since Advanced Weapon Training is a thing, you should use Abundant Tactics to give yourself extra uses per day. Before that, take Sunder Blessing which is Spell Sunder for divine spells for fighters.

You'll need the Smash from the Air chain to deflect rays.

I would recommend the Dorn-Dergar, and taking the feat that lets you change your grip from a melee weapon to a reach weapon as a swift action, don;t remember the name, it's in Adventurer's Armory 2.

Tusk the Half-Orc wrote:
Tusk the Half-Orc wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
Depending on how nice my DM is, I may get to avoid using the errata on Snowball so Spell Penetration may not be necessary, tbd.
What is the errata on Snowball?

Gah! I didn’t see that. When did that come down? Do you have a link? My conjurer with evocation as an opposition school is going to be ticked off.

Edit - I think I get it. It’s a change from the reprint in Ultimate Wilderness, right?


Darksoul has a good skeleton, but you can give yourself a couple more options. You can drop 2,000gp on a Wayfinder and cracked Opalescent White Pyramid which will give you the feat Weapon Focus, which saves you a feat slot.

Figure out if you're using Stamina, if so remember to grab Improved Imitative. The fighter Stamina trick gives you a natural 20 for 10 Stamina, which will be less than half your pool at 20th level. Worth it. There's a bunch of options to max out initiative.

Also don't forget that the Training Property exists for weapons, and as long as you are able to attack with that weapon you can tack training on it and basically purchase a few combat feats. This is great for things like gauntlets.

We definitely could use an RPG Line Draconomicon equivalent.

shameless plug

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JuliusCromwell wrote:

So I should go Advance weapon training fighter

What Advance weapon training options should I take?

Can some one help me out her together?

With no thinking involved, Focused Weapon, Warrior Spirit, and Defensive Weapon Training.

Armed Bravery is great for defense, and Versatile Training can give you not only more class skills, but it'll max them out for free as well.

shamelees plug

JuliusCromwell wrote:

I see. I'm taking the Kain point of the warpriest or fighter is weapon training?

I see, prefer not to have spells I wanna keep it simple
So i guess fighter

Couple questions dost the overwatch style feats and vital strike work together and would it be viable for massive damage out put or should I go another route?

Vital Strike won;t help much if you're aiming for high damage output.

For an archery based fighter, you'll be looking into a very vanilla build, since archery is one of the most feat intensive styles, but those feats let you do everything. Consider the Advanced Weapon Training options your bread and butter, as you can get access to higher damage dice, and magic enhancements on the fly.

Archery feats:
Point-Blank Shot, Precise Shot
Rapid Shot, Manyshot
Clustered Shots, Point-Blank Master
Snap Shot, Improved, and Greater
Deadly Aim, Weapon Focus (can be gotten with an item)
Far Shot, Combat Reflexes

beyond that, max out damage with Weapon Focus/Greater and Weapon Specialization/Greater and Martial Focus.

Add Adaptive, Greater Designating, and Seeking on your +5 bow, or just pay for a +3 Seeking Bow and take Warrior Spirit for the rest.

Paladins, Rangers, Bards, and Bloodragers all have a bunch of different ways to make this chain work.

It's their pounce.

The Eldritch Scoundrel can invest their feats into this since Savant lets you trigger your own sneak attack. And even if you can't DD for whatever reason, they still get greater invisibility.

You can definitely come up with a different kind of familiar bonus if you want, I would recommend re flavoring the Wasp or Scorpion Familiar, as it gives one of the best familiar bonuses: +4 to initiative.

There's also the prospect of the improved familiar feat as something to build towards. You could find a type of spider to use, or reflavor something like the tidepool dragon, which as is comes with 2 feats and 0-2nd level spellcasting as a sorcerer on its own. Give the player some choices, either by retraining those feats and spells known, or by simply allowing a familiar of the same type with different choices from the printed books.

So, I just updated the guide and found the Totemic Initiate, Disciple, and Master feats in Ultimate Wilderness, and it gives you access to a totem chain from the barbarian rage powers.

You gotta take Athletic and not be lawful to do it, but you can get pounce. It costs 4 feats and isn't done until 13th level, but it's there.

Is combat stamina a thing?

An... update?

Magic Weapon Abilities have been gone through. Next step is specific weapons, of which I think few are relevant. Please lmk if I've missed anything important.

I'm on a new PC so I'm going through the process of redownloading Adventurer's Armory 2, I plan on adding in the sections on weapon/armor modifications, then going into magic armor and then wondrous items.

At which point I think we can finally do builds, which means y'all can feel free to come up with some interesting builds for me to showcase. Full credit and links will be provided for you, of course, should you choose to participate.

Post builds I will include a multiclassing/variant multiclassing section.

Post that I can finally dig into archetypes, of which there are more than any other class. Yikes.

Do our PFS guys have info that may be outdated/changed on the legality front of things?

If doing vital strike, I would recommend an impact weapon, possibly with the focused weapon ability at later levels when you benefit from it.

All those dice...

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Rajnish Umbra, Shadow Caller wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
Don't quote me though, I don;t know my Golarion lore as well as some of the forumgoers do.

I got curious and dug around a bit.

Ragathiel (LG), Vildeis (also LG), and Reymenda (CG) seem to be the only good divine sources for the destruction domain. They're all various empyreal lords.
There are plenty of neutral and countless evil sources, though.

Did you just literally quote a statement that says "don't quote me"?

makes sense, but is sad.

So the fighter guide is out there, and in reviewing it for further updates I really have issue with the way some rules interact.

The feat Stalwart specifies that the DR gained from it stacks with class features, and specifically calls out the barbarian's damage reduction. This line implies that the alternate class feature Armored Juggernaut would also be eligible since it is a class feature.

The Armored Juggernaut feature specifies that it stacks with the armor's DR, such as from adamantine.

What do?

What armor training options are you considering? Armor Specialization is the best option, but I think it's still banned in PFS for arbitrary reasons. Armored Juggernaut ends up being better than a barbarian's DR eventually with the right gear and feats.

I would recommend giving us a little more info on what you actually want from this character. If you're just looking for damage, then VMC barbarian tacked onto a full fighter build can give you the best of both.

Very blatantly Chaotic Evil.

"Unless quenched, he would burn the world in a cycle of destruction"

Very rarely are lawful deities okay with destroying the world, I think in the Golarion setting the only 'good' deity that gets access to destruction is my avatar, Ragathiel.

Don't quote me though, I don;t know my Golarion lore as well as some of the forumgoers do.

Castilonium wrote:

Instead of human, go with demon-spawn tiefling for a FCB that gives +1 self-healing with LoH, +1 natural armor, a bite attack, and way more interesting flavor.

For eldritch heritage go with abyssal bloodline and get a bloodline familiar with an archetype of your choice. Then improved eldritch heritage will give you a bonus to strength. And since it's abyssal, even MORE interesting flavor.

This can be useful, but playing a tiefling can have its disadvantages.

You can go with Mostly Human, and still play a "human" while actually playing the tiefling race, nabbing all the Favored Class benefits.

But staying human isn't bad either. If you wanna go Eldritch Heritage, I suggest looking at the Orc Bloodline, as it gives you a very nice intimidate and STR boost.

For traits, I'll always recommend Extremely Fashionable, since it gives a +1 on both Diplomacy and Intimidate and gives you Intimidate as a class skill. Seeker is also nice for Perception.

Buying into a 17 for STR is a waste of resources, imo, you are better off evening those stats out a little, I may even recommend a 13 INT for access to Unsanctioned Knowledge later on, which can get you some amazing spells like Bladed Dash, Haste, and Dimension Door. The latter opens up the Dimensional Agility feat chain which is your best and one of the only ways to get "pounce."

Buying in a 16 12 14 13 8 15 gives you everything you'll need, and you can expect to put your ability score buffs into CHA, since it's an odd number. Your STR will be the same to start, but your Will saves will be one higher and that matters.

The nodachi is superior in almost all ways to the falchion, fyi. With it, you could even go a silly route and carry around a shield with Shield Focus and Shield Brace, and be nigh untouchable. It's also cheaper.

You have to decide what route you want to go in, since you are taking Fey Foundling, it seems you want to be a damage soak, so the shield route may not be ideal. Enemies need to want to hit you and becoming a power turtle doesn't incentivise that.

Figure out your role to the group, seems primary damage dealer, party face, and meat shield are the roles your build is going for. AVR's build upthread isn't bad, but you may want to consider more utility options over going all out with a critical build. I like Furious Focus, but no one else on the internet does.

Sjah wrote:

the best guide to fighters I have ever seen and one of the best class guides of all time. Well written and very in depth.

My only gripe is you mention Schrödingers fighter so many time but give no real example or build for it. Hope you finish the gear section soon. Outstanding work sir!

I'm torn as to whether I should finish the rest of the guide by going through the items then going into builds or if I need to go back and revisit the newer books that have come out since I last left off.

I've been scouring Adventurer's Guide and Ultimate Wilderness for feats that I don;t already have done.

It's fairly daunting.

Gavmania wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:

You can do both. It's the same, the arrow is fired as part of the casting, it uses it's normal casting time, i.e. it's time isn't affected so I can use it just like spellstrike.

I can use area affects with the range of my arrows, which normally takes 2 arcana, or 6 levels worth of character. I'm not sure those 3 arcana points are more valuable to me over the rest of my benefits. Caster level is a concern though.

What would the rest of a single class build start looking like? I'm assuming Elemental Spell at 7.

You can either declare that you are imbuing the arrow or declare that you are using spellstrike, that would be my reading of it. Your GM may allow it, but being able to do both is tantamount to getting 2 spells/round without quicken or contingency and shouldn't be allowed.

As regards the AA vs. EA question, very little has been written about the AA and whether its worth pursuing, but that suggests that there is little interest in the question, presumably because the AA is not considered worth pursuing (I could be wrong).

The EK vs. Magus question is much more clear cut. EK is only worth pursuing if you want a full caster gish (with 9 spell levels); Magus will not give you that so it is not worth pursuing EK if you are a Magus. The Full BAB is nice, and will give you an extra iterative attack, but you lose out on so much other stuff that it just isn't worth it. I can't see the point in losing a level of spell progression just to get a feat. If you want to do that, I suggest a fighter. You get more out of a level dip into fighter than you do a level dip into EK.

It works with Spell Combat, and I use Imbue Arrow instead of Spellstrike, because they effectively do the same thing in allowing me to shoot an arrow as casting of the spell.

Going EK is there for the BAB, and for fighter feats, which is what attracted me in the first place. I'd also get to keep my levels as magus for the class for feat prerequisites for things like Extra Arcana, should I decide I still want one of the later ones.

For that reason it is better than the fighter dip.

I'm mapping out potential builds rn for both options and seeing what I like better for an acual comparison, level-by-level.

Of note: DM decided, bow shenanigans achieved.

1st build: All the Prestige Classes!!!

[lvl 6; CL 6; BAB] Spell Blending (single 2nd level spell or two 1st)
[lvl 7; CL 7] Intensidied Spell, Knowledge Pool, 3rd level spells
[lvl 8; CL 7; BAB 6] Arcane Archer 1 Enhance Arrows; Ability Score Increase
[lvl 9; CL 8; BAB 7] Arcane Archer 2 Elemental Spell; Imbue Arrow
[lvl 10; CL 9; BAB 8] Improved Spell Combat
[lvl 11; CL 10; BAB 8.75] Favored Prestige Class (Eldritch Knight) [Spell Blending- up to two 1st-3rd]; 4th level spells
[lvl 12; CL 11; BAB 9.5; FL 5] Fighter Training; Ability Score Increase; Craft Staff (bow only)
[lvl 13; CL 12; BAB 10.25; FL 5.5] Prestigous Spellcaster; [Quicken Spell]; Improved Spell Recall
[lvl 14; CL 13; BAB 11.25; FL 7] Eldritch Knight 1 Weapon Specialization; 5th level spells
[lvl 15; CL 14; BAB 12.25; FL 8.5] Eldritch Knight 2; Spell Perfection (Snowball)
[lvl 16; CL 15; BAB 13.25; FL 10] Eldritch Knight 3
[lvl 17; CL 16; BAB 14.25; FL 11.5] Eldritch Knight 4; Greater Weapon Focus; 6th level spells
[lvl 18; CL 17; BAB 15.25; FL 13] Eldritch Knight 5; Greater Weapon Specialization
[lvl 19; CL 18; BAB 16.25; FL 14.5] Eldritch Knight 6; Extra Contingency?
[lvl 20; CL 19; BAB 17; FL 15] [Magus Arcana 12th level]

Elvencraft Bow ->Bow: +1/Seeking/Called/Training (Clustered Shots); Q-staff side 1: +1/Training (Arcane Strike); Q-staff side 2: +1/Training (Deadly Aim)

2nd build: only a 2 level dip in AA
[lvl 6] Spell Blending (single 2nd level spell or two 1st)
[lvl 7] Intensidied Spell, Knowledge Pool, 3rd level spells
[lvl 8] Improved Spell Combat
[lvl 9] Favored Prestige Class (Arcane Archer); [Spell Blending (single 3rd level spell or two 1st/2nd) or Reach Spellstrike]
[lvl 10; FL 5] Fighter Training; 4th levle spells
[lvl 11; BAB 8.5; FL 5] Arcane Archer 1 Prestigous Spellcaster (Arcane Archer); Craft Staff (bow only)
[lvl 12; BAB 9.5; FL 5] Arcane Archer 2 Imbue Arrow
[lvl 13; BAB 10.25; FL 5.5]Elemental Spell; Quicken Spell; 5th level spells; Improved Spell Recall
[lvl 14; BAB 11; FL 6] [Spell Blending (single 5th level spell or two 1st/2nd/3rd/4th) or Distant/Reach Spellstrike]
[lvl 15; BAB 11.75; FL 6.5] Spell Perfection (Snowball); Heavy Armor
[lvl 16; BAB 12.5; FL 7] Greater Spell Combat; 6th level spells
[lvl 17; BAB 13.25; FL 7.5] Weapon Specialization; [Bane Blade]
[lvl 18; BAB 14; FL 8] Focused Spellstrike
[lvl 19; BAB 14.75; FL 8.5] Extra Contingency?; Greater Weapon Focus
[lvl 20; BAB 15.5; FL 9] [Magus Arcana 18th]

Elvencraft Bow ->Bow: +1/Seeking/Called/Training (Clustered Shots); Q-staff side 1: +1/Training (Arcane Strike); Q-staff side 2: +1/Training (Deadly Aim)

3rd build: straight EK
[lvl 6] Spell Blending (single 2nd level spell or two 1st)
[lvl 7] Intensified Spell, Knowledge Pool, 3rd level spells
[lvl 8] Improved Spell Combat
[lvl 9] Favored Prestige Class (Eldritch Knight); [Reach Spellstrike/ Spell Blending]
[lvl 10; FL 5] Fighter Trainnig; 4th levle spells
[lvl 11; BAB 8.5; FL 6.5] Eldtritch Knight 1 Prestigous Spellcaster; Weapon Specialization; Craft Staff (bow only)
[lvl 12; BAB 9.25; FL 7] Elemental Spell
[lvl 13; BAB 10.25; FL 8.5] Eldritch Knight 2 Quicken Spell; 5th level spells
[lvl 14; BAB 11.25; FL 10] Eldritch Knight 3
[lvl 15; BAB 12.25; FL 11.5] Eldritch Knight 4 Spell Perfection (Snowball)
[lvl 16; BAB 13.25; FL 13] Eldritch Knight 5 Greater Weapon Focus; 6th level spells
[lvl 17; BAB 14.25; FL 14.5] Eldritch Knight 6 Extra Contingency?
[lvl 18; BAB 15.25; FL 16] Eldritch Knight 7
[lvl 19; BAB 16.25; FL 17.5] Eldritch Knight 8 Extra Magus Arcana (Bane Blade) (19th level magus for feats)
[lvl 20; BAB 17.25; FL 19] Eldritch Knight 9 Greater Weapon Specialization

Elvencraft Bow ->Bow: +1/Seeking/Called/Training (Clustered Shots); Q-staff side 1: +1/Training (Arcane Strike); Q-staff side 2: +1/Training (Deadly Aim)

4th build: straight Eldritch Archer
[lvl 6] Spell Blending (single 2nd level spell or two 1st)
[lvl 7] Intensified Spell, Knowledge Pool, 3rd level spells
[lvl 8] Improved Spell Combat
[lvl 9] Elemental Spell; [Reach Spellstrike]
[lvl 10; FL 5] Fighter Trainnig; 4th levle spells
[lvl 11; FL 5.5] Weapon Specialization; Quicken Spell; Craft Staff (bow only)
[lvl 12; FL 6] [Distant Spellstrike]
[lvl 13; FL 6.5] Improved Initiative; 5th level spells; Heavy Armor
[lvl 14; FL 7] Greater Spell Combat
[lvl 15; FL 7.5] Spell Perfection (Snowball); [Bane Blade]
[lvl 16; FL 8] Focused Spellstrike; 6th level spells
[lvl 17; FL 8.5] Extra Contingency; Greater Weapon Focus
[lvl 18; FL 9] [open Magus Arcana]
[lvl 19; FL 9.5] open feat; Greater Spell Access
[lvl 20; FL 10] True Magus

Elvencraft Bow ->Bow: +1/Seeking/Called/Training (Clustered Shots); Q-staff side 1: +1/Training (Arcane Strike); Q-staff side 2: +1/Training (Deadly Aim)

Ultimately Going EK buys in a higher fighter level, which opens up more feats like GWF and GWS, which makes up for the +2/2 from Bane (unless I also add in Bane, then I'm winning) but is flat damage added to all attacks, rather than forcing me to waste an action and extra pool points for what ends up being one less to hit and 2 less damage, consistently.

EK builds ultimately get me there faster, and whether I go for a 9 level run in it, or a 4 level run in it I can decide just how much I care about those extra class features, of which expanding the arcane pool is the only one I feel is relevant for most of the character's lifespan.

AA builds have the most spell versatility, and can do neat things like bomb enemy areas with Antimagic Field. Combined with EK, this build gets me the most bang for my buck, albeit with spell progression slowed down by 1 level. I can buy back the CL with an Ioun Stone or I can see about whether or not the fact that Prestigous Spellcaster stacking with itself would create a scenario where I could ultimately get back both CLs (I'm assuming not).

Straight EA builds have more access to feats, but ultimately have to spend the resources that I'd otherwise be trading out to get to be as good situationally as I would otherwise expect to be on a regular basis, given the small difference in BAB vs adding Bane more often. Is consistent damage worth more than situationally adding 2d6? This is the most important question of this build.

Assume Greater Magic Weapon is a daily thing, and being able to (in all build cases) use Arcane Pool for at least +3, meaning if I craft the bow at +1, use GMW for (+2< x <+4) then at any given time at or beyond 9th I can expect my bow to function as a +5 weapon, and going ahead of that I can simply add superfluous abilities from the meager list available to me from the magus class.

The most important (and really only) thing I miss by going into a prestige class on this build specifically is 4 or 5 points of arcane pool, depending on how long I dip for. So, at what point level wise am I really going to miss out on those 4 to 5 points?

Gid wrote:

Thanks so much!

I hadn’t thought about the translation aspect of it, that’s a really good point. I also like the aura idea, the only cast in the party is a bard though but it’s a thing I’ll add, just for depth. I also hadn’t thought about summoning.

The three point mechanical idea is really good. I’ll keep that in mind in mind for the future. Thanks again!

Detect Magic and Dispel Magic are the two most important spells in the game, and you should not feel bad about punishing a group of players that are not prepared to have these spells on hand. This is important for puzzle design at higher levels.

You could also expect a group rogue/trapfinder to check each obelisk, understanding that the only one NOT trapped is the correct answer.

Thing is, having an understanding of how skills and spells interact with the world really helps making a coherent dungeon that feels like you are challenging the characters in the game, rather than the wits of the players. This is important in a TTRPG, since otherwise someone playing a super-intelligent wizard etc. may not feel like their character is acting in a super intelligent way.

The poem should not have an English translation that follows rhyme scheme, since it's in drawven so you can skip making the poem make sense as a poem and use it specifically as a game mechanic so include whatever clue words you need to convey the message properly and say it's a rough translation with a Linguistics check or with a spell.

That's the first challenge of the puzzle, make sure the players understand that.

Make sure the players are rolling Knowledge (history, Local, religion, or geography) if they get stumped. This gives you a lot of leeway, make the DC low so a player in your group could just take 10, since this is a clue and not a challenge.

Is the goal simply to put one of the stones into the bowl, or is there a specific stone they need? You could have the stones/obelisks themselves have aligned auras that could be detected save for the one they need, similar to cleric auras based on the alignments of the gods. This gives them another avenue to solve the puzzle with spells and magic instead of skills. You can expect any group to have access to Detect Magic.

The last option is trial and error, which results in damage like you have listed, or in summoning a monster for them to fight, most likely based on Summon Monster or Planar Ally aligned to the god(s) they are making the mistake(s) with. The CR should be based on APL, so use a spell with a CL and spell level equivalent to whatever CR you want to use. If you really wanna go in-depth (you don't, this will be a short challenge) then make sure to use different challenges for different gods.

Generally, with any open ended puzzle, you want the players to have at least 3 in-game mechanical options to explore to solve the issue; with trial and error typically defaulting to the 3rd option, skills being the option that may or may not be covered by the group, and easy spells that you can expect any party to have being the easiest solution.

No matter how many mistakes and/or challenges and fights they encounter during this puzzle, they should only get the base XP for this encounter, otherwise it's pretty good.

re:swift actions

Zolanoteph wrote:
I think i see two magic traits. Illegal.

You don't, you see Magic, Regional, Campaign, and Social, respectively.

What actual class features do I care about past 11? It's definitely worth going to 11 for improved spell recall and the feat, but I'm not seeing too many actual Magus Arcana that I care about.

I don't care about heavy armor, I don't care about greater spell combat, and focused spellstrike seems pretty bad, especially considering imbue arrow.

Normally Pathfinder rewards staying single class, but I'm not sure about this specific build. Seems like the only thing I'm missing out on are a couple of arcana to add weapon qualities (which I can actually get back with feats of I want) and the arcane pool, which is a fun trick but I'm not sure if I really need to advance it that far.

Tusk the Half-Orc wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
Depending on how nice my DM is, I may get to avoid using the errata on Snowball so Spell Penetration may not be necessary, tbd.
What is the errata on Snowball?

It is now an evocation that goes against spell resistance, and it no longer has a chance to stagger.

avr wrote:

If you mean that you could use imbue arrow as part of spell combat - firing one arrow (at -2) with an area spell attached, then firing a full attack (also at -2) - then yeah, I guess so. It's still not the same since you can't attach a Stone Discus or other ranged/ranged touch spell to the arrow(s). And ranged spellstrike can't use area effects, similarly. Ranged spellstrike and imbue arrow are for different types of spell.

On a single-classed magus I'd take Intensify Spell at 7, maybe Elemental at 9. You can use scorching ray, stone discus or other spells before 9th level to vary your damage types, intensify spell is keeping your favourite spell at max power. At level 11 you get two feats - you might get manyshot and improved critical. Ranged spellstrike still doubles damage on crits. At 13 it might be time for quicken spell (quickened intensified rime snowball is 5th level). 15 is of course spell perfection. At 17 two feats again - you could get critical focus and sickening critical perhaps? At 19 you get a bunch of wizard spells, taking the contingency spell and extra contingency feat might be good.

For arcana if you're getting distant spellstrike@12 (just 1 arcana BTW) then reach spellstrike@9, bane blade@15, reflection@18 could work. Or intuitive protection in place of reflection if your GM likes summoning stuff.

If you were going for a 2-level arcane archer dip but otherwise single-classed you'd have to fit weapon focus in there before the dip of course.

I already have Weapon Focus via an Ioun Stone and Wayfinder.

You can do both. It's the same, the arrow is fired as part of the casting, it uses it's normal casting time, i.e. it's time isn't affected so I can use it just like spellstrike.

I can use area affects with the range of my arrows, which normally takes 2 arcana, or 6 levels worth of character. I'm not sure those 3 arcana points are more valuable to me over the rest of my benefits. Caster level is a concern though.

What would the rest of a single class build start looking like? I'm assuming Elemental Spell at 7.

Imbue Arrows does everything the two Magus Arcana for spellstrike do, but without incurring a -2. It's the way spell combat used to work before the Magus class came around. I can have all that. I do like the access to my book at 11th. I'm already planning on going at least 10. But the archery enhancements aren't that great from Arcane Pool. It's something else to consider.

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