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RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32. RPG Superstar 2013 Star Voter, 2015 Star Voter. 2,068 posts (3,897 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 12 aliases.


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RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Here's a few that I like a flavor-wise but are all also strong mechanically (all have full BAB, all good saves, decent skills, and some stat synergy):

Magus/Swashbuckler is good- at low levels inspired blade is a good option for stat synergy; eldritch scion is a bad archetype at low levels but after 8th an eldritch scion/vanilla swashbuckler is probably better than an inspired blade/other magus...

Daring Champion cavalier/Bard has been mentioned but I'll repeat it... I like the arcane duelist archetype for this but the archaeologist has some potential too. Mechanically, one of the dervish archetypes is probably best but I don't really like their flavor for pirates.

Divine Tracker ranger/Druid has a lot of synergy, can get an aquatic/amphibious companion, has water and weather control abilities, gets blessings for flavor, can wild shape into sea creatures... I haven't looked much at them but the tempest or aquatic Druid archetypes might fit well in this style game.

Eldritch Guardian fighter/Buccaneer, Savage Skald bard requires a little explanation... Take a parrot for your familiar and give it the sage archetype, dump your Int- now you're a bard that sucks at knowledges but your talking parrot has them covered, lol; you're still a hard fighting salty dog who always has a sea chanty at the ready when it comes to blows.

Mutation Warrior fighter/Steelhound inquisitor doesn't gain bombs but is otherwise a gunslinging alchemist (on steroids)- could be fun as the ship's cook/brewmaster (or the quartermaster).

Gunslinger/Inquisitor is all about proper god/philosophy selection... Mechanically it's a bit of a powerhouse (judgement and bane on your guns can be pretty sick), but you need to worship the right god to get the right flavor- either one strongly in favor of slavery or one vehemently against it will make him the token zealot who truly is concerned with that conflict above loot or crew or anything else. (Gunslinger/Warpriest could probably do this well too.)

Stygian Slayer slayer/Arcanist (or Wizard) would make for a mysterious/shadowy enemy who can track or scry, use stealth or invisibility, and eventually can dimension door (or teleport) in and out of their ship as he pleases.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

everything you need can be found here and/or here

specifically, the scarred witch doctor is what you need for Con as your casting (and hexing) stat...

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

How anti-witch? A half Orc scarred witch doctor is a Con based caster, so you'd be set on HP (and witches get cure spells if you need some self healing). Hexes are great for control (and debuffing), and you can use spells for buffing (and still be to afford some damage/healing/utility spells).

Arcanist is a strong option too- the white Mage gets access to healing for little cost and as already mentioned brown fur transmuted is a crazy good buffer.

If you're looking to go control, though, it really is hard to beat a kitsune sorcerer. Their racial bonus and racial favored class bonus make their DCs stupid high. Barring that, a human with racial heritage [kitsune] is pretty solid too (and if you want to be ridiculous can take the magic tail or fox shape feats).

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Wow. No kidding on having too many options... Do you have any idea what kind of game you'll be playing?

If you want a yoda guy a bladebound kensai would be a good option... You could be very effective as a mobile, unarmored, magic using swordsman- just ask to have your blackblade be blue/green/whatever instead. And this really is the best opportunity you'd ever have to make a kick-ass monk.

Are you allowed to use variant multiclassing?
- a Druid with the barbarian VMC would be a dangerous spellcaster (with plenty of bonus spells and good DCs), and could combine wild shape and rage to be a melee powerhouse (and with a longspear and combat reflexes he'd be a serious threat just making AoOs and casting).
- an alchemist headed towards masterchymist, with barbarian VMC would make for another melee monster, this time as a genius with strong skills and extracts.
- a lore warden/martial master fighter with VMC bard would be a clever flexible fighter with buffing capabilities, really solid knowledges (which would help with 'know thy enemy'), and you could pick up dangerously curious to open up some magical options.

Those are just a couple of the top of my head. Pretty much any crazy, MAD concept would work.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

An archaeologist bard would bring a lot of the same goodies to the table as an inquisitor (6 level caster, 3/4 BAB with self buffs, lots of skills, etc), but might be easier to work out the flavor for.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

The pack lord Druid suggestion is a good one- you can grab one cat companion per level (plus whatever pets you buy), and shillelagh is a great spell for your cane if you ever need to get into melee.

If you want to be as melee capable as possible with your cats, things to look at include: a mauler familiar, the animal ally feat, boon companion (if you're doing multiple ACs), and augment/superior summoning (for calling more cats). It would take a while to come together but a summoner with a cat eidolon, familiar bond and improved familiar bond for a mauler cat familiar, animal ally and boon companion for a small cat AC, and augment summoning for celestial dire lions could be pretty brutal...

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Advanced Class Guide wrote:
Parent Classes: Each one of the following classes lists two classes that it draws upon to form the basis of its theme. While a character can multiclass with these parent classes, this usually results in redundant abilities. Such abilities don't stack unless specified.

The conversation (which you appear not to have read) was around whether weapon training and swashbuckler's weapon training constitute redundant abilities. If they do then this specific rule overrides the general rule on stacking (in accordance with how general and specific rules work in pathfinder).

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Ok, I have seen that FAQ- I thought maybe there was another one that more clearly addressed this... Based on this FAQ, duelist training definitely counts as weapon training, the only question is whether or not swashbuckler weapon training constitutes a redundant ability from the parent class... I would certainly rule that it does (same name, same numeric progression, same levels, etc), but a particularly liberal GM (who likes high powered games) might allow it.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

@Laughing man- I'm not sure which FAQ you're talking about... If you could post it that really might make a difference. As I read it without any FAQ swashbucklers should be able to benefit from dueling gloves but not stack their training with a fighter; if there's an FAQ that takes away dueling gloves it may very well (inadvertently) allow the abilities to stack.

@Cap.- no, I usually avoid the homebrew threads (partly out of fear that I'll spend way too much time there, and partly because I get frustrated when people post stuff that's really poorly done or seems to have no real concept of game balance). Is there a thread there on VMC Archetypes?

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

you misunderstand me... when i said "VMC Archetypes" I didn't mean archetypes that did basically the same thing as variant multiclassing, I meant archetyped versions of VMC (so when you took VMC Fighter you could chose the learned duelist version, or the lore warden version, or the two-handed fighter version, etc).

you're VMC does not look very well balanced to me. The typical VMC intentionally limits you to lower level abilities (caps at weapon training 2 and armor training 2) but you're giving away higher level/power abilities. That's not great design, specifically because it has clear balance issues.

clearer version of VMC Fighter(learned duelist):

following the standard VMC rules you'd gain:
3- Duelist Stance at level -2 (which frankly is pretty potent already, but not as bad as rage so we'll go for it)
7- armor training 1
11- Duelist Training at level -4(again, this is probably a step up from basic weapon training in power but with the hit to effective level and loss of choice is probably alright)
15- armor training 2
19- Precise Thrust

that's a more balanced approach that maintains the flavor of the archetype without altering its power level too dramatically. plus, its more consistent with the design behind other VMCs.

Also, duelist training is a version of weapon training and, as such, shouldn't/wouldn't stack with the swashbuckler's weapon training... (describing redundant abilities and parent classes, the ACG says "Such abilities don't stack unless specified.")

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

I've been playing around with VMC Archetypes...

Learned Duelist is an easy one to set up... I'd suggest switching out bravery at 3rd level for duelist stance (at level -2), then at 11th trade weapon training for duelist training (obviously), and at 19th precise thrust instead of weapon training 2...

Apart from that- daring champion does good damage with very little investment thanks to being able to stack challenge and precise strike. Order of the flame is good for that thematically and mechanically. Grab a decent Cha and you can 'face' without much investment (since those are class skills and you get 4+int ranks), plus more panache for doubling precise strike.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

And, for future reference, there's a section called "rules questions" that would be a better place for questions like this.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

I'd suggest keeping iron will at 1st level... I'm not sure if maybe CLH knows something I don't but it looks to me like you're going to be at +0 Will at 1st otherwise (+2 from Pally, -2 from Wis)... That gives you less than even odds against even the weakest color spray/sleep/slumber hex/etc (all of which will have a 12 DC even if the caster only has a 12 casting stat...); all of those are fairly common and all of them will ruin your day pretty quick. By 3rd your Will could/should be much better (+3 pally +2 sorc/bard +2 Cha -2 Wis) but frankly iron will is still a good choice (honestly, if you're going to tank Wis you should take IW... Even as a pally if you don't have at least +4 from Cha then you really want/need the feat to offset your penalty).

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

i love a good all-dwarf party.

the banished family looking to restore their name would totally work. other options off the top of my head would include:
- the remnant from a destroyed colony trying to get back to their ancestral home
- a family who followed their father (or oldest brother) on some quest/mission/thing and gets swept up in an adventure (possibly after being separated from their leader?)
- dwarves also tend to be religious... you could have them all sent off by the church (works especially well if everyone plays pallies/clerics/inquisitors/warpriests, or archetypes like the divine tracker that make other classes overtly religious)
- dwarven societies tend to be fairly militaristic... you could have them all be part of one military unit sent off on a mission
- they could all be part of the same import/export business and they have to venture out of the their homeland for work (then get swept up in adventure and long to return)

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

dragon disciples definitely make better melee than archers (IMO).

regarding pally levels, 4 is not a bad option... 3rd level grants a bunch (mercy and a bunch of immunities), and at 4th channel isn't that great but a second smite can make a big difference (especially if you get into natural weapon fighting: more attacks/round = more mileage from smite).

for sorcerer levels... i really have to agree with RDN- bard is a superior option. just the fact that it allows you to cast in armor is a huge deal: magical mithril breastplate will always beat mage armor (and doesn't require you to burn 2-3 of your 1st level spells everyday). If you already have some bard characters just play this one differently... you'd only have one level so you wouldn't even seem all that bard-like: don't invest in any knowledges or performances (there's only 1-2 bardic performances that actually use the perform skill, just ignore them); flavor your inspire courage as the kind of rousing speech William Wallace or King Theoden might give as battle begins (which is well within the standard range of flavor for the ability, though people often flavor it as musical); and try to vary your spell selection some to fit this character's particular flavor.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

+1 to Korthis' suggestion- just play whichever character can't be there; that'll be the best for consistency and will make more sense than trying to constantly explain why different characters are vanishing and reappearing all the time.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

If you're going to be drunk maybe go for something that doesn't have a lot of options to keep track of or math to do... Maybe just a straight class fighter? Do a simple 2hander build and just write out your bonuses assuming that you'll always be using power attack?

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

The mad dog barbarian also gets an animal companion and (iirc) can pick from the whole Druid list. You could always take the feat tree for a companion too (nature soul, animal ally, boon companion).

The beast totem tree does seem less appealing if you're planning to be in dire tiger form most of the time, but it does allow a lot more flexibility to pick other forms in different situations (since you'll always have claw/claw/bite and pounce), and it improves the crit on your claws no matter what form you're in...

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Don't worry about aspect of the beast, take the beast totem rage powers instead.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

well, given that its for a ninja i'm guessing that Dex>Str, so start with agile.

keen would certainly help, and flaming and/or flaming burst are certainly thematic. i'm not entirely sure how igniting plays with flaming burst but it's also on theme (and possibly better for a 15-20/x2 weapon). glorious could be on theme too, though drawing that much attention to yourself isn't very ninja-like...

how much help does he need? brilliant energy could work really well for a wakizashi literally made of magical fire, and it would drop most things' AC considerably... of course, its completely useless against constructs and undead, so take that into account...

of course, if you really want something epic then go outside standard weapon abilities... anything that grants SLA abilities is gonna be cool: permanent fire shield; at will scorching ray; elemental body 4 to turn into a fire elemental... or just make stuff up- x/day dimension door that burst like a fireball at the origin and/or destination, or gaseous form that deals damage as an incendiary cloud in your square.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

You could ask about trying out variant multiclassing... You'd have to drop a feat (since you would have lost your 3rd level feat, along with giving up your 7th level feat), but there's a bunch of options that could be interesting/fun/effective for a 2hander pally:
- cleric would get you a domain power (at full level) and some extra channels (they'd only be 1d6 but could work for out of combat group heals or to power a greyflame enchant or something)
- sorcerer has a bunch of options depending on what bloodline might fit your character
- cavalier would let you stack smite and challenge to really lay a hurting on BBEG
- inquisitor ups your intimidate if you're using that, and gets you judgment
- oracle would get you one revelation, like life link if you want to make sure someone else stays alive while you're killing things

There's other options too, those are just some that stood out to me.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

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I really like it when archetypes stack in interesting ways...

Lore warden/martial master fighter is clever and adaptable like no other fighter, and always has the right combat maneuver for the job...

Mutation warrior/eldritch guardian fighter is so supernatural he hardly seems like a fighter; pick up pragmatic activator and the magus variant multiclass and you're really gonna have some options...

Qinggong/Sensei monk isn't overly powerful but can use Mystic Wisdom to apply his wide range of ki powers to others (making them one of the only ways to use true strike on someone else)

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

A hexcrafter and an eldritch scion are significantly different. If either is going to outshine the other it's almost certain to be you outshining her... Eldritch scion is frankly an underpowered archetype- it's got good flavor but their 'mystical focus' clutters their (already busy) swift action economy, burns through their eldritch pool quickly, and severely limits their ability to use spell combat; hexcrafter on the other hand grants hexes which are a nearly limitless resource.

The fact that you both use a 1 handed weapon and cast spells doesn't mean you have to be too similar... She'll play up the fey flavor and pick spells that go with that, you can play up the hexes and pick spells with a totally different feel.

That said, I agree with TheFreeTaco- bard is more like a Red Mage IMO (they get a handful of 'white magic' like Cure spells).

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Gunslinger with VMC alchemist is definitely better than Alchemist with VMC gunslinger... IMHO, though, alchemist with the feats is probably better than either; and an alchemist with a 1 level gunslinger dip would probably be better too...

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

VMC gunslinger is a disaster (unless you're starting at or above 15th level). All it does is give you the feats you need spread out over waaaaay to many levels to be useful.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

It's possible to do just through feats... It takes some time to come together though because there's no free gun involved... A half-elf can take ancestral arms to get EWP[firearms] at 1st level along with gunsmith; they should be able to afford a gun around 2nd or 3rd (if they don't really buy anything else), and can grab amateur gunslinger at 3rd (and explosive missile discovery at 4th).

I don't think that's good enough to merit not having an archetype, but it's functional...

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

To me it always seemed a little ridiculous that the class that probably invented gunpowder and is well known for their willingness to experiment volatile chemicals (and wield them
In combat) wouldn't have a gunslinger archetype... Not everyone sees mutagen as a jeckell/Hyde thing (that's really more of a master chymist thing).

Having it grant more than just a couple deeds would require some thought, but it seems completely doable to me. Restricting the list of potential discoveries they can chose from and lowering the number of them that they get could pay for a lot of gunslinger abilities...

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

I looked at this a while ago for a dwarf I was thinking about for a higher level campaign... I went Ranger 6/Inquisitor 4... Str build as Shin mentioned... Took the outflank teamwork feat and (with solo tactics) any time I flanked anyone that bonus effectively cancelled the -4...

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

I was trying to pretty much stick to what was asked about, plus I feel like the particular set up here is less conducive to magi... Personally, I think magus [eldritch scion] 8/bloodrager 12 on one side would pair nicely with sorc 12/DD 8 on the other, with broad study and mad magic... It sounds like that's not doable in their rules though... (Also, for durability you'd be hard pressed to beat the oracle/DD.)

edit: with the scaled disciple feat DD increases your oracle casting level like it was sorc. So bloodrager 20 with oracle 12/DD 8 has you casting as an 18th level oracle while still having full BAB, all the DD stat boosts, insane AC, mad magic, and all the other goodies mentioned before...

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Rylar wrote:
If a character cross classes bloodrager and sorcerer do they have to have the same bloodline?

Yes. If you're committed to sorcerer (instead of oracle) you're required by DD to have the draconic bloodline, and you're required by bloodrager to match bloodlines... If you took the crossblooded sorcerer archetype you could take the non-draconic bloodline for bloodrager...

Bloodrager actually satisfies the casting requirement for DD so (if it'll work within your gestalt rules), you could do BR/any full arcane caster into BR/DD. DD grants +1 to any arcane casting class- so you could take a wizard, arcanist, or witch and not have any of that repetition of abilities.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Renegadeshepherd wrote:
as an oracle what would be the best mystery though? as a half elf you could still take racial heritage but could also pump the heck out spirit of the warrior revelation for better than Full BAB. Battle oracle with weapon focus and such would make you very accurate and heavy armor :)

You're only going to take 10-12 oracle levels (the other 8-10 going to DD), so even abusing the half-elf FCB you're not going to get any revelation above 15-18th level (you could also do that as an aasimar with scion of humanity).

In terms of revelation choice, personally I'd pick based on which type of dragon I was tied to and the feel I was trying to create around that. From an optimization stand point, your best bet is probably one of the ones that gets Cha to AC. Battle is never a bad choice for a melee oracle but since you already have full BAB and proficiencies from bloodrager and will only have 10-12 levels of oracle it's a less good option here than for a lot of other builds. Nature would be a strong contender- grab Cha to AC, the telepathic bond revelation, and the one where you auto-stabilize and gain fast healing when at negative health maybe... you could go with a green dragon or something like that to keep it thematic...

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

You can't stack casting in gestalt the way renegade is asking about. The divine route does make for a super deadly DD though... A human with racial heritage [kobold] can take the feat Scaled Disciple, which lets you qualify for DD as an oracle (and increases oracle casting instead).

A full bloodrager who starts oracle and takes DD on that side can still cast while raging with the same feat, can cast all his spells in armor, could use Cha for AC instead of Dex, can pick up the Divine Protection feat very easily, and doesn't have nearly the overlap issues you get from a sorcerer. Definitely worth thinking about.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Depending on your exact rules, there's a number of different ways to get really potent gestalt DD builds... I have one posted on here somewhere that ends up with (I think) full CL as a sorcerer and +20 BAB (and pally saves).

Personally, I think that bloodrager/sorcerer may have too much overlap (especially with the draconic bloodline, some of the others are more different), but it certainly wouldn't be terrible. Take the feat that lets you use sorc spells while raging and you'll be fine.

If your GM allows it, go:
BR/sorc 1-6,
eldritch knight/sorc @7,
EK/DD @8,
BR/DD 9-11,
EK/DD @12,
BR/DD 13-15,
EK/DD @16,
BR/DD @17,
BR/sorc 18-20.

Mixing PrCs is a big no-no for some GMs, but if it's allowed that gives you full BAB, Full CL, all 20 levels of sorc bloodline, all 10 levels of DD bonuses, 16 levels of Bloodrager abilities, and 4 levels of EK (enough to pick up weapon specialization).

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

PapaZorro wrote:

I'm telling you man, don't destroy your arcane pool with the Elasticity Arcana, save yourself and use:

1. Long Arm spell
2. Lunge Feat
3. Swordmaster's Flair (Blue)
4. Enlarge Person if you really need more (maybe).

I'm taking elasticity (eventually) because I'm not planning to use reach very often but it's nice to have the option when I want/need it. Enlarge person and especially long arm are strong options but they take a spell slot for each use and with diminished spellcasting, and as prepared casters, that's a big expense. Feats are also a big expense but if you plan to use reach a lot that's probably the way to go...

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

i'll pick up reach eventually with the elasticity arcana.

every GM i've ever played with will allow slashing grace in this build; i've seen a few people on the boards who hold to the same argument that Jodokai makes, but everyone i've played with uses the interpretation that if a feat or ability allows you "treat it as" a one handed weapon then you actually treat it as a one handed weapon, and can use it with feats like slashing grace.

how that's ruled is really a rules question, and shouldn't be sidetracking your advice thread.
its worth noting, though, that:
a) the lance does not say that you "treat it as" a one handed weapon, just that you can wield it in one hand,
b) weapon versatility also doesn't say that you "treat it as" just that you can deal a different kind of damage, and
c) the "treat it as" language has to mean that it truly counts as a category it actually isn't because otherwise slashing grace couldn't allow you to use swashbuckler abilities at all...

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Personally, I'm going human, but the build I'm looking at is this:
1- weapon focus[scarf] (bonus), weapon finesse (human), slashing grace [scarf]
3- flamboyant arcana, extra arcana [arcane deed: precise strike]
4- slumber hex

After that you can pretty much do whatever you want... With slashing grace and precise strike (and arcane pool enhancements) you should be doing enough damage that you can save spellstrike for special occasions; slumber gives you a solid control option that you can use over and over; and, that still leaves most of your spells for buffs, utility, and bonus damage. If you want some debuff options I'd take evil eye (and cackle) over something like rime spell or dirty trick maneuvers, though the latter is viable too... If you want to go the rime/maneuver route, think about the elasticity arcana instead of all the improved feats- it'll stop you from taking AoOs from most opponents without costing you a ton of feats...

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

i was just thinking about making a guy with a very similar build... i decided to move away from maneuvers because i could be more effective at control just using hexes, but if you want to use them for story/personalty reasons true strike really is going to be your go to spell. spellstrike becomes secondary in that build because most of the time (when you're not just hexing) you're using spell combat to cast true strike and perform a disarm/sunder/trip (and eventually more than one of these, or 1 plus regular attacks). note that all other maneuvers require a standard action, so cannot be combined with spell combat.

first paragraph was ninja'd; dangers of trying to work on a post between other things at work... more relevent stuff:
honestly, i don't think you even need rime... debuffing with hexes is gonna be the way to go. hexes are a nearly limitless resource (spells certainly aren't), and saving a feat is always helpful. (you can use it to gain another hex)

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

sorry- i haven't checked this thread in a while... the reason i suggested lore warden/martial master is that they gain a lot of control (and other options) through martial flexibility (supported by the CMB boosts from lore warden), and give up very little damage. you miss out on weapon training but can still do a simple Str/PA build with weapon spec on your 2hander. you're going to pick up PA for damage and you get combat expertise for free, so you can just use martial flexibility whenever you want/need a maneuver feat and then you get to invest all your normal glut of feats on damage and survivability...

that gives you a significant damage output and a lot of adaptability to keep things from getting boring (the one downside being that to be really effective you have to have some familiarity with all of the combat feat options).

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

option 1:
I'm a big fan of a human fighter with both the lore warden and martial master archetypes... It makes for a clever fighter with better skills than most martials and a fair bit of flexibility- the bonuses to CMB and ability to pick up 'improved X' and 'greater X' feats via martial flexibility lets you control when necessary without sacrificing any damage feats...

If you can use the variant multiclass rules from unchained, I love the idea of adding VMC Magus... It's further incentive to invest in Int, ups your damage with arcane pool, and gives you more options with arcana (and giving up 5 feats won't be a big deal when you're getting 11 fighter bonus feats, free combat expertise, and the temporary feats from flexibility).

option 2:
Eldritch Guardian fighter... People usually build this archetype with a mauler familiar as a flanking/teamwork buddy (which is a perfectly cromulent build), but for you I'd think about an improved familiar who can serve as a UMD monkey for you- that way 'you' can focus on damage but still get some spell support via your familiar for variety. Invest some in your own UMD and you still have some out of combat options too.

option 3:
Mutation Warrior fighter with VMC barbarian. At 3rd level you can stack rage and mutagen for insane strength. That's just more dice/bigger bonuses, but it can be pretty satisfying sometimes to get a massive bonus to hit and damage... Plus you get a few rage powers and discoveries for variety...

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Truthfully, I think sorcerer/oracle is usually a trap... At 16th level you might be able to get away with it though.... One of the problems with it is that it adds no survivability... in fact, adding spec to oracle decreases survivability because you can no longer wear armor. The other problem is action economy- you can only cast so much per round... Being 16th level will help with this because you have enough higher level spells to cast a good number of quickened spells (plus, potentially, 2 spell perfections to quicken even more), and enough good buffs to increase survivability a lot.

That said, something like eldritch scion magus/battle oracle might be better... The magus can cast in armor which will help you out a bunch, and the broad study arcana will let you use spell combat and spellstrike with your oracle spells, which will help your action economy a bunch.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

i like the arcanist idea. full casting, lots of flexibility...
if you want to add more healing you can with the White Mage archetype (which doesn't give up much) and UMD (which is a class skill).

if you're allowed to use the variant multiclass rules, you should consider VMC Bard. you would be really solid with your knowledges and you'd get some of sweet party buffs that your party melees and animal companion would love! and arcanist is one of the very few classes/archetypes with a good stat array for the bard VMC

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

its worth noting that there is still* nothing inherently musical about bardic magic... their spell entry says that all their spells have a verbal component and then (as a parenthetical) offers "singing, reciting, or music" as the ways (or some of the ways) to satisfy that requirement. Reciting incantations is fairly universal for any kind of spellcaster (look how many spells have verbal components), so there's no reason bards would have to be pidgeon-holed because of that.
*minor edit, for a minor ninja'ing

Basically, they're just mages with a particular area of study (their own spell list) and a supernatural ability (occasionally spell-like ability) to create a variety of effects which "relies on" some combination of "audible and visual components"- almost none of the bardic performance abilities are even tied to the perform skill, and the few that are mostly offer non-musical options (like act, comedy, and oratory). Countersong is the only ability bards have by default (that I can think of) that is tied directly to music, and (since it only affects sonic or language dependent effects) its easy enough to dismiss as not really magic (since you're basically just drowning out the sound that is magical).

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

sadly, there's no grace/finesse build for a big hammer... if you're cool with a big axe instead, a daring champion cavalier or swashbuckler could take slashing grace for a waraxe. that and max ranks in Acrobatics should be plenty to get you started.

as for a long term plan... one level of swashbuckler and the rest in magus would let you do the waraxe/acrobatics thing with plenty of spells for buffing, vanish/invisibility, and eventually (starting at 10th) dimension door, which opens up the dimensional dervish/assault line.

if you're interested in the divine route, pairing the trickery[deception] domain with travel would be a great option (though you may have to give up some of the grace/finesse feel for a cleric build).

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

yeah... Kestral's right... trying to keep up 4 stats when none of them is Dex is going to be rough...

if you want to play a pally/magus gestalt you really should go with eldritch scion, but do so knowing that up until 8th level it'll cause some challenges. that let's you drop Int, so now there's only 3 stats to worry about.

also, your swift action economy is going to be crowded but LoH really will (or at least should) solve a lot of survivability issues... that lets you worry less about your Con- that just leaves Str and Cha, and you can actually be pretty decent at both of those.

You want to make use of spell combat, which means no 2hander... so you should consider a Dex build- magi have the tools to do that well (particularly picking up precise strike as an arcana) and it will up your AC and initiative without sacrificing damage over a 1hand Str build.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

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the trait is called Trap Finder (its from the mummy's mask campaign but some GMs allow it in other campaigns).

Variant Multiclassing (from pathfinder unchained) as a rogue grants trapfinding at 3rd level and seems like a decent option for a number of magus builds.

There was a spell called Aram Zey's Focus in the Pathfinder Society Field Guide... it grants trapfinding while in effect. its a 2nd level wizard spell but you could pick it up at 6th with the Spell Blending arcana (or 5th with the extra arcana feat).

Good old dispel magic can render them inert temporarily too... that's probably the simplest solution (though also maybe the least reliable).

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Sawtooth sabre counts as a martial weapon except for the purpose of being treated as a light weapon with 2wf, so you don't need EWP to take weapon focus if you're proficient in martial weapons (unless there's an FAQ I'm unaware of).

As for not being able to use slashing grace without a separate weapon focus... I've never seen martial versatility ruled that way before, but rereading it i can see the case for that interpretation- a second martial versatility for weapon focus solves that (and gives you +1 to hit with pretty much any weapon you'd use).

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

you can get dex to damage on kukris (sawtooth sabres too, but you can's get dex to hit on them without spending the gold for agile or dipping swashbuckler)...

you have to be a human (or half-human), and a fighter (or one of the many other classes that count as fighter for feats). start with weapon finesse, weapon focus[sawtooth sabre], and slashing grace[sawtooth sabre]... yes, those are right for the kukri build (don't bother with ewp, you'll never actually dual-wield sawtooth sabres)... at 4th level (or as soon as you count as fighter 4) take martial versatility[slashing grace]- now all light blades use Dex to hit and damage!

i know OP was looking for a Str 2WF build, but i thought i'd just throw this out there to show what is possible in Dex builds.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

It looks like all the major roles are covered... The nice thing about that is that you can play anything and not worry about it! Is there anything you've been wanting to play lately? Is there an odd build that you've always wanted to try but were afraid it wouldn't be effective enough? Might be a good time to dust that off. Or something that's pure flavor.

Maybe something like a musketeer cavalier/sensei monk/battle herald? Or a sailor/pirate guy who's an eldritch guardian fighter with a sage parrot familiar?

Or you could ask the GM about using the opportunity to try out one of the variant multiclassing options...

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

the kind of build you want for this depends on what levels you're playing at too... at low levels the high Str melee focused Wiz is viable but (as Lazar said) he'll fall behind fairly quickly, at higher levels any wizard can be effective in melee by simply stacking their best/favorite polymorph with transformation... starting at 11th level any wizard with improved share spells can turn themselves and their familiar into able combatants in a round or two...

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

i've posted this before in similar threads, but +1 for fighter. I played a high Cha kitsune fighter with the dangerously curious trait for a while. he had enough feats to afford the tails and still be effective in combat, and between the tails and UMD had a lot of fun options not available to most fighters. now that familiar folio is out i'd strongly consider trying it again with an Eldritch Guardian fighter (with a fox mauler familiar), though their lost bonus feats early on would really make it a slow starter...

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