Paizo Top Nav Branding
  • Hello, Guest! |
  • Sign In |
  • My Account |
  • Shopping Cart |
  • Help/FAQ
About Paizo Messageboards News Paizo Blog Help/FAQ
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
Pathfinder Society

Pathfinder Beginner Box

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game

Pathfinder Comics

Pathfinder Legends

PaizoCon 2014!

Playtest Data: Thoughts on the Witch


Advanced Player's Guide Playtest: Final Playtest


I've been play-testing a witch in Pathfinder Society, and I think most of the changes to the class are great, but I wanted to share my thoughts on the matter, based on testing the class both before and after the recent changes.

1) The loss of "touch range" in favour of 30-foot range for most hexes makes a huge difference. The class is really, truly playable now! This was the perfect fix.

2) Removing the provocation of attacks of opportunity from hexes is also a great idea.

3) Lowering the spell level on Baleful Polymorph is great. Having Baleful Polymorph and Bestow Curse, two totally iconic witch abilities, feel more special for the witch by virtue of giving them to them at lower spell levels really hammers home the flavour of the class.

4) Amending flight so that it's a regular hex was definitely the right move. Witches fly, right? The flavour of the ability is great too.

5) I think cackle could be broader. It should probably say "any targeted hex with a limited duration" rather than specifically citing Evil Eye, Misfortune, etc. That way it's cleaner to apply cackle to other hexes that might become available in future books. Cackle, by the way, is awesome.

6) The witch's familiar still feels incredibly fragile, and the witch has too much invested in his familiar for that to feel all right. Imbue With Spells is a cool ability, and getting bonus spells from the familiar is an awesome idea, but if a witch's familiar dies, he's starting almost completely over with having to research spells. Something should be done to make the familiar a little more durable or able to reincarnate itself or something. Having a familiar but having to keep it hidden away at all times seems like kind of a waste.

7) A class so focused on having a familiar seems like a good fit for Improved Familiar. That does, however, mean sacrificing the bonus spells granted by his familiar. A second sidebar with bonus spells from improved familiars for the witch who chooses to go that route would be awesome. Or maybe rules that allow you to polymorph your familiar into an improved familiar when you take the feat, so that you can keep the bonus spell list of your original familiar. Just a thought.

I had been really, really excited for this class prior to its first printing, and when it was originally revealed I was actually a little disappointed, but having read through it a little more thoroughly, played it a little, and having seen the changes, it's actually one of my favourite classes, and lives up every bit to my original expectations. I'm excited to see where this class might go.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Benn Roe wrote:
6) The witch's familiar still feels incredibly fragile, and the witch has too much invested in his familiar for that to feel all right. Imbue With Spells is a cool ability, and getting bonus spells from the familiar is an awesome idea, but if a witch's familiar dies, he's starting almost completely over with having to research spells. Something should be done to make the familiar a little more durable or able to reincarnate itself or something. Having a familiar but having to keep it hidden away at all times seems like kind of a waste.

This. My own PFS group has some mildly sadistic GMs who don't understand the nuances of the class. The lengths I've already had to go to to keep the familiar safe are utterly ludicrous (essentially denying myself the opportunity to even refresh spells during one adventure that allowed it, and having to constantly worry about its' presence anywhere near any combat zone.)

I understand that you want the familiar to be important, but this just isn't the way to go about it. The bonus spells don't make it feel any better than the bog-standard Wizard's familiar. Quite the opposite, actually, a lot of the spells on the bonus lists feel like they squarely belong on the main casting list (The stat-buff spells) or don't belong on the class at all (the entire Viper list.)

While I'm not seriously suggesting you do this, I would be willing to drop the Familiar entirely and just use a 'spells known' list akin to the Sorcerer, even without the Spontaneous casting advantage. It would eat up less session time on keeping my spellbook safe and it would make the Witch feel like a different and 'advanced' class.

To sum up, I think that how the Familiar is supposed to feel is that it's a major portion of your power. Instead, it feels like nothing more than a liability with some nifty features you may wish you could use but are far too risky to ever contemplate.

Cheliax

Benn Roe wrote:

I've been play-testing a witch in Pathfinder Society, and I think most of the changes to the class are great, but I wanted to share my thoughts on the matter, based on testing the class both before and after the recent changes.

1) The loss of "touch range" in favour of 30-foot range for most hexes makes a huge difference. The class is really, truly playable now! This was the perfect fix.

2) Removing the provocation of attacks of opportunity from hexes is also a great idea.

3) Lowering the spell level on Baleful Polymorph is great. Having Baleful Polymorph and Bestow Curse, two totally iconic witch abilities, feel more special for the witch by virtue of giving them to them at lower spell levels really hammers home the flavour of the class.

4) Amending flight so that it's a regular hex was definitely the right move. Witches fly, right? The flavour of the ability is great too.

+1! The two witch NPCs I used against the PCs in my campaign would have benefited a LOT from these changes, and I'm happy that these mechanics have been revised! :)

Cheliax

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Benn Roe wrote:

become available in future books. Cackle, by the way, is awesome.

6) The witch's familiar still feels incredibly fragile, and the witch has too much invested in his familiar for that to feel all right. Imbue With Spells is a cool ability, and getting bonus spells from the familiar is an awesome idea, but if a witch's familiar dies, he's starting almost completely over with having to research spells. Something should be done to make the familiar a little more durable or able to reincarnate itself or something. Having a familiar but having to keep it hidden away at all times seems like kind of a waste.

How about taking something out of the summoners book and allow her to merge with her familiar or the familiar merge with her?


I agree. For a class to put such emphasis on the familiar, making it as vulnerable as it is and costly just seems like the wrong way to do it. I like the idea of getting improved familiar, maybe even getting it at first level.

Really, anything would help at this point. I've played a witch and lost my familiar, (Magic Missile) and it was just a hassle and a chore to play. The fact the one spell could knock it out was a tragedy.


How about a hex that sends the familiar to another (harmless) plane of existence?


And how do certain hexes function? If, for example, the witch takes the flight hex at 6th level,would he (or she) gain all the benefits of the hex?

Paizo / Messageboards / Paizo Publishing / Older Products / Playtests & Prerelease Discussions / Advanced Player's Guide Playtest / Advanced Player's Guide Playtest: Final Playtest / Playtest Data: Thoughts on the Witch All Messageboards
Recent threads in Advanced Player's Guide Playtest: Final Playtest

©2002–2014 Paizo Inc.®. Need help? Email customer.service@paizo.com or call 425-250-0800 during our business hours: Monday–Friday, 10 AM–5 PM Pacific Time. View our privacy policy. Paizo Inc., Paizo, the Paizo golem logo, Pathfinder, the Pathfinder logo, Pathfinder Society, GameMastery, and Planet Stories are registered trademarks of Paizo Inc., and Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, Pathfinder Player Companion, Pathfinder Modules, Pathfinder Tales, Pathfinder Battles, Pathfinder Online, PaizoCon, RPG Superstar, The Golem's Got It, Titanic Games, the Titanic logo, and the Planet Stories planet logo are trademarks of Paizo Inc. Dungeons & Dragons, Dragon, Dungeon, and Polyhedron are registered trademarks of Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and have been used by Paizo Inc. under license. Most product names are trademarks owned or used under license by the companies that publish those products; use of such names without mention of trademark status should not be construed as a challenge to such status.