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So, how's that Arcane Trickster working out for you?


Pathfinder RPG General Discussion

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see wrote:
Abraham spalding wrote:
EK turns the wizard from a 20 level wizard, to a 19 level wizard with d8 hit dice and medium BAB, with a couple of extra feats to boot.

For someone who rants about a lack of hard numbers later in the thread, you seem to have some trouble with them. You need a level in an all-martial-weapons class to qualify for EK, and then you don't get any spellcasting the first level of EK. An EK is accordingly always two levels of spellcasting behind a wizard, maxing out at 18. And Ftr 1/Wiz9/EK10 comes out one feat ahead of the straight wizard, not "a couple".

And while you do eventually catch up into something viable, the EK clearly is behind the curve at level 7. A bard out-spells you (4/3/1 vs. 3/2/1), out-BABs you (+5 vs. +4), out-HPs you (35 average, vs. either 33 or 31 average), out-skills you (6 vs. 2), ties you on saves (+1/+4/+4, vs. +4/+1/+4), and can cast without failure in light armor (unlike you).

It is 18th caster level, thanks for pointing out the slip up, let me help you with a few of your own:

The bard out spells you... almost but not really. IF you specialize you have 4/3/2 which means you have 1 more second and third level spell... you also forgot that the EK is much more likely to have a higher int than the bard will (being less MAD) and therefore have equal skill points -- the bard will probably get more use out of his due to the versatile performance but that is neither here nor there, we aren't talking about the bard we are talking about the EK. At level 7 you will have a BAB of +4 (+2 wizard, +1 fighter, +1 EK) 8 feats before race is considered, which is much more than the bard will have, and saves of +4/+1/+4... fortitude is more important than Ref. With those feats you have it is quite possible you will be able to cast in mithral breastplate without ACF (unlike the bard).

AND the biggest thing you are forgetting -- the EK has wizard spells. Much better than the bard's spell list, and you are still generally equal to the bard as a caster (depending on traits involved you could even be equal caster level).

At lower level (seven is still in this range being the lower 1/3 of the game still) that +1 BAB doesn't matter quite as much yet, especially since it's not getting you an extra attack yet.

Also when I said the EK gets 2 extra feats I was talking in comparison to the 3.5 EK, compared to which it does gain 2 extra feats and a capstone.

Beyond that this is 1 level of supposed suck... after that your spellcasting goes back on line full time, your BAB will continue to grow faster than the bard's does for the next nine levels, and you will still get two more feats and a capstone at level 15...something the bard does not.

At 10th level you have 4th level spells (like the bard only better still), and your BAB is a 7 just like the bards. Your saves fall behind at this point but your HP climbs faster. Skill wise the bard will still be you out on general versatility but that's fine -- he's supposed to, otherwise the bard wouldn't be as good has he is -- however your spells will be better.

You still end up at 15th level with access to 7th level spells (the bard is at 5th level) +12 BAB (a point higher than the bard) 10d10 HD +5d6 (average here is over the bard's too), save throws of 10/4/7 (a bit weaker than the bard) 2 more feats than he has at the time, and a capstone. Armor could be forgotten at this point if you are simply playing a "tougher but slower wizard" (which is valid as a choice) leaving you open for actually using that capstone -- after all you have defensive spells that are much better than armor anyways.

Over all by level 20 the EK has only given up 2 caster levels and gotten a boost up to a d8/medium BAB class with a different capstone and better than base (wizard/sorcerer) save throws.

Is it necessarily better than the bard? No. Should it be? No. The idea was balance. However it does have 9th level spells and a BAB of 15... give up one more caster level and your BAB breaks the 16 barrier and you still get ninth level spells.

Feat math for a "couple" though against the wizard straight:
Wizard straight 10 + 5 = 15
EK 10 + wizard 2 +fighter 1 + EK 3 = 16
EK (2 fighter) 10 + wizard 2 + fighter 2 + EK 3 = 17

In all three cases you still get ninth level spells. I would suggest taking the second fighter level as your 20th level, which almost completely negates its impact on your spell casting.

IT would be nice if you quote me too -- you seem to have taken at least one of my statements out of context (the couple of feats ahead one I think)... I'm not sure of this because I'm not sure what post you are reading on, and I don't bother back tracking all the way through the thread to simply see where you might be talking about.

At the end of the day however the pathfinder EK is still better mathematically and mechanically than the 3.5 EK.

The "Boosts" to the base classes were really minimal over all, and the PrC's received boosts likewise, which are being discounted to suggest they are "inferior" to what has come before -- which is a false assertion.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Malisteen wrote:

Arcane trickster just doesn't do what I want a Wizard/Rogue to do. If you're looking for a guy who sneak attacks with Ray spells, I suppose it's ok, but it isn't the subtle blent of sneakery & magic I'd want. Even a bard comes closer.

Why isn't it? The AT has the skills required for stealth, sneak attack, weapon proficiencies, plus a heck of a selction of spells to buff that role, AS LONG AS MORE THAN THE MINIMUM NUMBER OF ROGUE LEVELS ARE TAKEN. The AT works if you don't try to compete with a full fledged wizard.

What you need to do is further define what are the minimum requirements to meet the goal you set. I see comparisons but I have no idea where the goalposts are.


Gotta agree with LazarX. Nothing keeping you from taking rogue levels if you want to be more rogue-y. One extra level of rogue gets you +1 BAB, a rogue talent, uncanny dodge and more skill points.

Okay, so now you won't get that 17th caster level. You'll still have mo' better spells and skills than a 20th level bard.

Shadow Lodge

LazarX wrote:
0gre wrote:


The trickster can be this guy, and in fairness I'm probably trashing him a bit much... The biggest problem with the trickster is the 4-5 levels of being mediocre (bad) you have to deal with. My perspective is skewed since I'm right in the middle of that now :)
It's probably because if I guess right, you've opted to take the path that sacrifices the absolute minimum of caster levels and for the AT that's a mistake. Taking one or two more rogue levels than the minimum you can get away with really makes the difference in shortening the "window of suck" and maximising the synergy between the two class roles. The problem with the mixed PrCs is that optimizers are determined to get those 9 spell levels at the expense of all else because they insist on building the single-class wizard/sorcerer they had with extras and look at these classes only from that angle.

This is probably true. I'm not sure how high level our group is going to go though. If I waited 2 more levels of rogue as you suggest I would probably never reach arcane trickster. Or would only reach it as we were finishing the campaign. Keep in mind many groups finish up at 11th-12th level. You are basically talking about 2 levels in arcane trickster.

Shadow Lodge

Someone asked a while ago what I would do to 'fix' the trickster. My suggestion would be to lower the entry requirement to 1d6 Sneak attack, 1st level arcane casting, and 6 ranks of spellcraft. Then the class would have 2 levels where spellcasting doesn't progress. The class would have the same power level in the end without the suckage in the beginning. And you aren't delayed a level for taking it as sorcerer.


0gre wrote:

This is probably true. I'm not sure how high level our group is going to go though. If I waited 2 more levels of rogue as you suggest I would probably never reach arcane trickster. Or would only reach it as we were finishing the campaign. Keep in mind many groups finish up at 11th-12th level. You are basically talking about 2 levels in arcane trickster.

A sad fact of real world gaming. I played a campaign from 1st to 21st, once. The GM planned to finish it at 25th level, but he quit in frustration after we wiped out some uber-nasty dragons in about 3 rounds. They were ready for us, but alas, we were ready for them, too. High level parties are hard to deal with... XD

If you don't at least get to play with your capstones at high levels, PrCs won't be much fun to play. It sucks to work that hard at something and never get there.


Don't you need to be level 6 to have 6 ranks in a skill?

Shadow Lodge

Gryphon Gold wrote:
Don't you need to be level 6 to have 6 ranks in a skill?

Yes... not sure what you are getting at. In fact in order to meet a prereq of 6 ranks you have to be level 7 since you have to meet the prereqs prior to entering a class.

Shadow Lodge

Benicio Del Espada wrote:
0gre wrote:

This is probably true. I'm not sure how high level our group is going to go though. If I waited 2 more levels of rogue as you suggest I would probably never reach arcane trickster. Or would only reach it as we were finishing the campaign. Keep in mind many groups finish up at 11th-12th level. You are basically talking about 2 levels in arcane trickster.

A sad fact of real world gaming. I played a campaign from 1st to 21st, once. The GM planned to finish it at 25th level, but he quit in frustration after we wiped out some uber-nasty dragons in about 3 rounds. They were ready for us, but alas, we were ready for them, too. High level parties are hard to deal with... XD

If you don't at least get to play with your capstones at high levels, PrCs won't be much fun to play. It sucks to work that hard at something and never get there.

Even if you play to level 20 you are looking at 20-25% of the levels where you are bad and you never get to a point where you are outshining anyone. If the class had some point where it seriously kicked ass? Then it might be worth it.

You bring up another good point though. What happens after level 10 in the class? Either you start progressing as a 4-6th level rogue getting the sort of benefits characters gets at 7th level and kissing spell progression goodbye; or you advance as a wizard/ sorcerer and your sneak attack progression ends. This is really a limitation of all the 10 level prestige classes in general but essentially it means your character plateaus once he gets his capstone while his companions are getting their high level powers and true capstones.


0gre wrote:


You bring up another good point though. What happens after level 10 in the class? Either you start progressing as a 4-6th level rogue getting the sort of benefits characters gets at 7th level and kissing spell progression goodbye; or you advance as a wizard/ sorcerer and your sneak attack progression ends. This is really a limitation of all the 10 level prestige classes in general but essentially it means your character plateaus once he gets his capstone while his companions are getting their high level powers and true capstones.

My answer has always been to let the PC continue leveling in their class (assuming it's a 10-level one). PF seems to not be interested in that, if Seltyiel is the example.


Abraham spalding wrote:


The bard out spells you... almost but not really. IF you specialize you have 4/3/2 which means you have 1 more second and third level spell... you also forgot that the EK is much more likely to have a higher int than the bard will (being less MAD)

How do you figure? EK needs Int, Str, and at least one more physical stat, probably Dex. Possibly Con. Bard needs Cha and Dex. Int is a bonus, but as long as it isn't the dump stat, you will probably have enough. And of COURSE it will have more Int than the bard, the Wizard being an Int caster.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
0gre wrote:


It's probably because if I guess right, you've opted to take the path that sacrifices the absolute minimum of caster levels and for the AT that's a mistake. Taking one or two more rogue levels than the minimum you can get away with really makes the difference in shortening the "window of suck" and maximising the synergy between the two class roles. The problem with the mixed PrCs is that optimizers are determined to get those 9 spell levels at the expense of all else because they insist on building the single-class wizard/sorcerer they had with extras and look at these classes only from that angle.

This is probably true. I'm not sure how high level our group is going to go though. If I waited 2 more levels of rogue as you suggest I would probably never reach arcane trickster. Or would only reach it as we were finishing the campaign. Keep in mind many groups finish up at 11th-12th level. You are basically talking about 2 levels in arcane trickster.

In 3.5 you'd have had 3 levels in AT if you were wizard based, 2 levels if sorcerer. In Pathfinder that would probably increase by one.

2 levels of AT gives you the ranged legerdermain (which is unlimited use in pathfinder) and some more sneak attack. Three levels would get you your first use of impromptu sneak attack, and of course 2 or 3 levels of spell progression more than enough to have given you a good feel of an Arcane Trickster.


Cartigan wrote:
Abraham spalding wrote:


The bard out spells you... almost but not really. IF you specialize you have 4/3/2 which means you have 1 more second and third level spell... you also forgot that the EK is much more likely to have a higher int than the bard will (being less MAD)
How do you figure? EK needs Int, Str, and at least one more physical stat, probably Dex. Possibly Con. Bard needs Cha and Dex. Int is a bonus, but as long as it isn't the dump stat, you will probably have enough. And of COURSE it will have more Int than the bard, the Wizard being an Int caster.

Not at all. The EK only needs INT for what I'm suggesting, but could use dex and Con... Str isn't needed anymore than the Bard needs it... in fact less due to the fact you have better spells.

The bard will not have as nice spells available as the wizard will, and will not be getting as many spells per day, or as many spell levels.

The bard has an extra requirement in Cha if he wants to cast those spells. He has more requirements for his stats than the EK does simply because he needs CHA to cast. The EK gets more use out of his casting stat. The bard will require the same stats as the EK and Cha. He's immediately harder to work with than the EK because of that.

This ignores the fact that the EK will still have more spells base than the bard if he specializes.


Abraham spalding wrote:


The bard has an extra requirement in Cha if he wants to cast those spells. He has more requirements for his stats than the EK does simply because he needs CHA to cast. The EK gets more use out of his casting stat. The bard will require the same stats as the EK and Cha. He's immediately harder to work with than the EK because of that.

How are you possibly arguing Bard has a high MAD because it needs Charisma? I'm sure you know full well the class is BASED ON CHARISMA. You arn't making any sense. The EK needs high enough Int to cast and you are arguing high enough Int to add a notable amount of extra spells. I fail to see how this doesn't hobble the EK - a martial arcanist - but a high Charisma hobbles the Bard - a class literally built around Charisma. I presume your argument is assuming the Bard needs a high intelligence because that's the only way it makes an iota of sense. Except that is a baseless argument.


Cartigan wrote:
Abraham spalding wrote:


The bard has an extra requirement in Cha if he wants to cast those spells. He has more requirements for his stats than the EK does simply because he needs CHA to cast. The EK gets more use out of his casting stat. The bard will require the same stats as the EK and Cha. He's immediately harder to work with than the EK because of that.
How are you possibly arguing Bard has a high MAD because it needs Charisma? I'm sure you know full well the class is BASED ON CHARISMA. You arn't making any sense. The EK needs high enough Int to cast and you are arguing high enough Int to add a notable amount of extra spells. I fail to see how this doesn't hobble the EK - a martial arcanist - but a high Charisma hobbles the Bard - a class literally built around Charisma. I presume your argument is assuming the Bard needs a high intelligence because that's the only way it makes an iota of sense. Except that is a baseless argument.

Not at all I'm saying that if the bard is going to fill the same roll as the EK then he's going to have more stat needs than the EK due to his need for CHA. IF he wants to have more skills (part of your original argument) then he's going to need more Int too... if he wants to fight then he'll need the physical stats.

The EK does not need to be a martial arcanist. He can be a buffed wizard. Yes he'll be two caster levels behind, but martial doesn't mean melee, and martial (in this case) doesn't require physical stats.

I'm not even sure why you brought the bard up in the first place... you simply grabbed him for comparision.

AND as I said at the end of the post, the EK that specializes has more base spells than the Bard.

Also due to the fact the EK will have more spell levels he will gain more bonus spells than the Bard does -- The bard only gains bonus spells for six spell level -- the EK gains them for nine spell levels. Because of that even if the bard does have the same amount of CHA as the EK he will still gain fewer spells per day than the EK.

What it seems to me is that you couldn't prove that the new versions of the Prestige classes are worse, as you claimed so instead you moved over to a different argument trying to make an assertion you haven't actually stated yet.

Which cup is the peanut under?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber

The real question here is why is anyone comparing the Eldritch Knight with the Bard? An Eldritch knight is clearly designed to be built out of a sorcerer or wizard build which implies an entirely different type of spell. Sorcerers and Wizards have more battle-oriented spells whether it's field control, summoning, or outright blasting and defense.

Bards operate in an entirely different mindset and methodology and much more of a mixed role as many of them do tend to invest more in healing and buffing roles than the other flavors of arcanist.

So the fact that one has more or less spells than the other is fairly irrelevant.


Abraham spalding wrote:


Not at all I'm saying that if the bard is going to fill the same roll as the EK then he's going to have more stat needs than the EK due to his need for CHA. IF he wants to have more skills (part of your original argument) then he's going to need more Int too... if he wants to fight then he'll need the physical stats.

No. You have YET to explain why a Bard would have a higher MAD. You are either asserting something you arn't sharing or making a patently false assumption.

Quote:
The EK does not need to be a martial arcanist. He can be a buffed wizard. Yes he'll be two caster levels behind, but martial doesn't mean melee, and martial (in this case) doesn't require physical stats.

Really? Your counterargument is the original martial arcanist class doesn't have to be a martial arcanist? That's idiotic.

Quote:
I'm not even sure why you brought the bard up in the first place... you simply grabbed him for comparision.

Because some one else brought it up and you said something ridiculous about it.

Quote:
What it seems to me is that you couldn't prove that the new versions of the Prestige classes are worse, as you claimed so instead you moved over to a different argument trying to make an assertion you haven't actually stated yet.

What it seems to me is your arguments are equally ridiculous and equally not based in fact.


The bard is MAD, more so than the EK is, he requires at least one more stat than the EK in Cha requirement.

Martial =/= melee. If you can't get past that it's your problem. You can do a fine archer with the EK, you can do a fine mage with the EK... you don't have to go melee -- you can (and do well at it) but it's no more a requirement than it is for the fighter, or than two weapon fighting is for the ranger. To say the EK must do melee, and anything else is "idiotic" really doesn't do justice to your ability to look past the obvious or the class itself.

I said nothing ridiculous about the bard -- I pointed out some issues the person hadn't covered. I like bards -- especially in pathfinder -- that doesn't mean they fill every role, or can do so well -- the more they try to cover the less well they do at all of it. They are MAD, that doesn't make them BAD, just means you have to be aware -- the statements made were lacking and I pointed out where -- something you haven't disputed... again.

You're claiming my arguments aren't based off of fact... but the fact is the 3.5 prestige classes are worse than the pathfinder classes. This has been demonstrated. You haven't countered those demonstrations -- you haven't even talked about them. You've moved on to a conversation I was having with someone else. If you want to counter my argument then counter it.


Rogue 7: BAB 5, saves 2,5,2, 3 feats, 3 talents, Sneak attack: 4d6 ,skill points: 80, 35 hp.

Wizard 7: BAB 3, saves 2,2,5, 4 feats, spells: 4,4,3,2,1, skill points: 20, 27 hp.

Rogue3/wizard3/AT1: BAB 3, saves 2,5,5, 3 feats, 1 talent, spells: 4,3,2, sneak attack: 2d6, skill points: 64, 31 hp.

Weak. I think Ogre's suggestion to allow entering the class at 5th level would help overcome the suck. Give it the rogue BAB, too.

An AT at this level makes a good scout and trap disabler, but it's lousy in combat and the weak sneak attacks are situational, and best done with spells. He'd need to hang back and use a bow (poorly) if he can't get a sneak attack. He'll need some more levels to get up to speed.


Benicio Del Espada wrote:

Rogue 7: BAB 5, saves 2,5,2, 3 feats, 3 talents, Sneak attack: 4d6 ,skill points: 80, 35 hp.

Wizard 7: BAB 3, saves 2,2,5, 4 feats, spells: 4,4,3,2,1, skill points: 20, 27 hp.

Rogue3/wizard3/AT1: BAB 3, saves 2,5,5, 3 feats, 1 talent, spells: 4,3,2, sneak attack: 2d6, skill points: 64, 31 hp.

An AT at this level makes a good scout and trap disabler, but it's lousy in combat and the weak sneak attacks are situational,

Hey, then it should be played as a scout and trap disabler - simple as that. Not every class should be judged on raw damage output. I agree with people who say an AT is NOT a spell-slinger, he's a rogue with spells. The general skill collapse and bonus skills from INT means the AT can keep up in the main Rogue skills easily (Perception, Disable Device, Stealth, etc).


( I had a quote here, but thought better of it)

The AT never cooked the goose for me either.
I too prefer the Unseen Seer.

but in all fairness, It all depends on how you plan on using the character's abilities from 3 different sources.
not to mention personal preference.


Abraham spalding wrote:

The bard is MAD, more so than the EK is, he requires at least one more stat than the EK in Cha requirement.

I still don't see where you are drawing your arguments from. What are you asserting are the other abilities that the Bard needs to max?


Helic wrote:
Benicio Del Espada wrote:

Rogue 7: BAB 5, saves 2,5,2, 3 feats, 3 talents, Sneak attack: 4d6 ,skill points: 80, 35 hp.

Wizard 7: BAB 3, saves 2,2,5, 4 feats, spells: 4,4,3,2,1, skill points: 20, 27 hp.

Rogue3/wizard3/AT1: BAB 3, saves 2,5,5, 3 feats, 1 talent, spells: 4,3,2, sneak attack: 2d6, skill points: 64, 31 hp.

An AT at this level makes a good scout and trap disabler, but it's lousy in combat and the weak sneak attacks are situational,

Hey, then it should be played as a scout and trap disabler - simple as that. Not every class should be judged on raw damage output. I agree with people who say an AT is NOT a spell-slinger, he's a rogue with spells. The general skill collapse and bonus skills from INT means the AT can keep up in the main Rogue skills easily (Perception, Disable Device, Stealth, etc).

His advantages at this point are saves equal to the bard's, more spells than a bard, rogue weapons and armor, if he needs it (bad choice wearing armor,IMHO), and, given his need for int even more than a rogue, a real chance at being as good as a rogue in all the rogue's skills. Dex would be his next best stat, making most of his rogue skills better, and helping him hit with ranged spells/weapons(sneak attack, if he can do it).

The best AT is always a wizard/rogue. Int and dex are synergistic. Cha is not an ability to put points in with this class, though you shouldn't dump it, either, since some rogue skills are cha-based. Dump strength, then wisdom.

Sorcerer and bard builds have different criteria, but are still playable. You want good int, but cha is way more important. BS people with bluff, and use illusions to get where you want to go. The problem is getting the rest of the party in with you.

Shadow Lodge

Helic wrote:
Hey, then it should be played as a scout and trap disabler - simple as that. Not every class should be judged on raw damage output. I agree with people who say an AT is NOT a spell-slinger, he's a rogue with spells. The general skill collapse and bonus skills from INT means the AT can keep up in the main Rogue skills easily (Perception, Disable Device, Stealth, etc).

Look, now we've come full circle back to the point I made on page 1!

Why would you choose to be a scout/ trap guy who sucks in combat when you can be a scout/ trap guy who is decent in combat? AT isn't any better at these things than straight rogue.

Andoran

I plan on making my PF Society character an AT.

Not because I am a masochist.

Because I wanted to explore the possibility of a non-STR melee combatant.
With 3.5 PFS rules, that made me go the Andoran way with a Rogue built (and some small Fighter for a faster Weapon Finesse).

I am alas stuck with the Andoran faction and the most interesting trait there was all about the surprise round. Thus I stuck with Rogue. As a DEX-based melee attacker, it is essential for my character to get the Wiz (Diviner) 1st level ability and it has synergy with the Andoran trait.

Then I checked how the Wizard's bag of tricks could help me in my DEX-combatant stance. I quickly identified the classic Mage Armor and Shield for AC boost and the Chill Touch.

Touch spells indeed seem quite nice : no armor, nor shield bonus, and no DR to boot. It nicely opens the way for sneak attack damage on opponents who would think themselves nigh immune to it.

And the Chill Touch's effect has a duration based on caster level.

The versatility of a mage's spells at a small cost to the Rogue's fighting prowess. Well, I like the idea.

I now intend to make a build based on the idea of the frustrating opponent : insanely high AC and touch sneak attacks.

BTW : to rise my AC even more and get some shuriken fun, I added a single Monk level to the build.

Is it optimized in the absolute to get high level spells ? Not at all
Is it optimiized in the absolute to get high damage output on any target ? No

Is it optimized to reach the goal I have in mind for this character and have fun doing it, especially in combat ? You'd better believe it ;-)


0gre wrote:
Helic wrote:
Hey, then it should be played as a scout and trap disabler - simple as that. Not every class should be judged on raw damage output. I agree with people who say an AT is NOT a spell-slinger, he's a rogue with spells. The general skill collapse and bonus skills from INT means the AT can keep up in the main Rogue skills easily (Perception, Disable Device, Stealth, etc).

Look, now we've come full circle back to the point I made on page 1!

Why would you choose to be a scout/ trap guy who sucks in combat when you can be a scout/ trap guy who is decent in combat? AT isn't any better at these things than straight rogue.

Because this scout/disable trap guy has a few tricks up his sleeve that a straight rogue doesn't. Its always nice to be able to disable a trap from a safe distance, and there is usually something to fall back on if something doesn't work out.


Cartigan wrote:
Abraham spalding wrote:

The bard is MAD, more so than the EK is, he requires at least one more stat than the EK in Cha requirement.

I still don't see where you are drawing your arguments from. What are you asserting are the other abilities that the Bard needs to max?

If the bard wants to be combat effective at all he is going to need some physical stat. If he wants skill points then he's going to need Int -- base 10 would be fine but that means he can't dump it either. He can't dump Cha because he needs it for his skills. He could dump Str and rely on a crossbow for combat work when it comes to that point, (if it comes to that point) but his spells aren't going to do as well in combat generally than the EK's spells will, and he'll have less of them because he will have fewer stat points to spend on what he needs (because he has less dump stats).

The bard will need Int 10 to keep his skill points, Cha 20 (if he wants to match the EK in spells... and if the EK specializes the bard still fails to match), Dex as high as he can get it, Conas high as he can get it (to be fair everyone needs this to the same degree generally), and could dump Str if he wanted and possibly Wis (I wouldn't but he could and survive).

The EK will need Int 20 (starting points on the Int of the EK and the Cha for the Bard), Dex as high as he can get it, and Con as high as he can get it (same as the bard here). However he can dump Str, Cha, and Wis (again I don't recommend dumping Wis, but he could). This gives the EK one more dump stat than the bard will have, meaning the EK will have more points to spend on his important stats.

*********

0gre wrote:
Helic wrote:
Hey, then it should be played as a scout and trap disabler - simple as that. Not every class should be judged on raw damage output. I agree with people who say an AT is NOT a spell-slinger, he's a rogue with spells. The general skill collapse and bonus skills from INT means the AT can keep up in the main Rogue skills easily (Perception, Disable Device, Stealth, etc).

Look, now we've come full circle back to the point I made on page 1!

Why would you choose to be a scout/ trap guy who sucks in combat when you can be a scout/ trap guy who is decent in combat? AT isn't any better at these things than straight rogue.

I would argue he isn't any worse either though. He can do the grease thing to get more sneak attacks with rays or melee touch attacks, and he has several good defensive spells as well. He's different, but not necessarily worse than the rogue.


Anybody got a build for a rog3/wiz3? This is likely the worst level of suck. How can you make this guy fun to play?
Let's say 20 pt. buy, standard treasure (16,000 gp).
If you have one you're playing, put him up here!

Qadira

Benicio Del Espada wrote:

Anybody got a build for a rog3/wiz3? This is likely the worst level of suck. How can you make this guy fun to play?

Let's say 20 pt. buy, standard treasure (16,000 gp).
If you have one you're playing, put him up here!

You wanted fun to play? Here is fun to play. Might not be statistically optimal but he will be fun to play.

A 1d3+2d6sneak attack Orb of Acid/Ray of frost all day long, A few shocking grasps at 2d6+2d6SA, scorching ray for 4d6+2d6 SA, evasion, stealth.....This guy would be cool. Now in a Min/Max campaign he may have an issue and toe to toe with a full wizard he isn't nearly the caster that the wizzo is, but in a dungeon full of critters this guy has options. Spider-climbing, sneak attacking, ray tossing, Area effect avoiding, open that lock....He's alright. Way more flexible than either a full rogue or a full wizard, sure he may be a bit weaker but unless your group is into squeezing out every single DC/BAB/AC boosting point they can muster, this guy will be fine and will always have something to do.
I ain't doin' no full build but here is some thoughts....

Half-Orc Rog3/Wiz3 (Half-orc is my favored for this, I also like dwarf as an option except that his speed would suffer. Both have Darkvision which I really like for stealthy types...)
str-10, dex-16, con-(12+2 h-orc)=14, wis-8, int-17(+1 at 4th level), cha-10
+4 BAB- ranged+7/melee+4 (mostly gonna use touch spells anyway or ranged weapon)
Equipment- wand of scorching ray, wand of shocking grasp, pearl of power(1), slippers of spider climbing, and Cloak of elvenkind. He still has 3450gp left....I assume some consumables(scrolls and stuff) and such and prior consumables would also eat into this and my thoughts would be to have a MW Falchion, MW dagger, and a MW shortbow.
Skills...go friggin' wild! Max out Stealth, Acrobatics, Perception and Disable device....the rest is up to what the party needs, any future PRC requirements, and personal flavor. You have 48 ranks with 24 taken by the maxed out 4 I listed. 24 left to use as you please.
Feats-PBS, Precise shot, and then any of these 2 is OK-Silent spell, Weapon Focus:ray, Toughness and Improved Initiative.

This guy is gonna be a wall-crawling, sneaky ol' bugger that is gonna have a ton of skills to use in a great amount of situations and will probably have a good amount of scrolls for most occasions. This dude looks fun to me! My game is about having fun though, so I am sure he is gonna be a click or so below the Required Optimization Code Levels, but if your game is about fun without having to squeeze numbers so much, he is gonna be fairly sturdy HP-wise, somewhat tough to hit with the right spells, stealthy, skillful, and fun to play.

Shadow Lodge

Fake Healer wrote:
A 1d3+2d6sneak attack Orb of Acid/Ray of frost all day long, A few shocking grasps at 2d6+2d6SA, scorching ray for 4d6+2d6 SA, evasion, stealth.....This guy would be cool. Now in a Min/Max campaign he may have an issue and toe to toe with a full wizard he isn't nearly the caster that the wizzo is, but in a dungeon full of critters this guy has options. Spider-climbing, sneak attacking, ray tossing, Area effect avoiding, open that lock....He's alright. Way more flexible than either a full rogue or a full wizard, sure he may be a bit weaker but unless your group is into squeezing out every single DC/BAB/AC boosting point they can muster, this guy will be fine and will always have something to do.

Except how is he sneak attacking with his ray of frost 'all day long'? Similarly scorching ray... Shocking grasp he has to cast then move in to flank or he gets nailed with an AoO so he's not likely doing that all day long either. It's tough to sneak attack with ranged spells more than once/ encounter when you don't have greater invis.


Would it be possible to build a Witch/Rogue/Arcane Trickster if you spent the rogue talent on minor magic for mage hand?

I'm in love with the concept, though I'm sure it's probably mediocre at best in actual play. Just wanted to know what other people thought about it.


Benicio Del Espada wrote:

Anybody got a build for a rog3/wiz3? This is likely the worst level of suck. How can you make this guy fun to play?

Let's say 20 pt. buy, standard treasure (16,000 gp).
If you have one you're playing, put him up here!

Str 7 Dex 16(18) Con 13 Int 19 Wis 14 Cha 7 Half Elf (favored classes Rogue and Wizard).

Specialization -- Conjuration
Banned -- Enchantment, Divination
Familiar

Feats:
Skill Focus (perception)
Weapon finesse
Point Blank
Precise Shot

Spells: (memorized)
0th level:
Acid Splash, Detect Magic, Prestidigitation, Message
1st level:
Chill Touch, Grease, Ray of Enfeeblement, Mage Armor
2nd level:
Glitterdust, Spectral Hand, False Life

Talent: Slow Reaction

Skills:
Acrobatics (max) Total Bonus + 14
Climb (max) Total Bonus +8
Stealth (max) Total Bonus +14
Perception (max) Total Bonus +17
Disable Device (max) Total Bonus +14
Knowledge (arcane) (max) Total Bonus +14
Swim (max) Total Bonus +8
Sense Motive (max) Total Bonus +14 (alertness)
9 more skill points.

Equipment:
+2 Mithral Buckler (5,020 gp)
Cloak of Resistance +2 (4,000 gp)
Belt of Dex +2 (4,000 gp)
Masterwork Thieves Tools
Wands:
Mirror Image, Magic Missile

Familiar Actions:
The familiar should always assist other for either your skill check, or your AC.

AC range 17~23 (17 = Dex + shield, 21 = 17 + mage armor 23 = 21 + aid other from familiar)

You basically use your spells to set up situations where you can sneak attack with either your acid ray, acid splash or chill touch this makes it easier to get off spells since you prevent your foe from taking AoOs.

Grease is your baby here -- while they are balancing they lose their dex which means you can sneak attack them. Of course you'll want the fighter helping to keep them from moving... I would start with the Chill touch, then grease them when they are looking like they won't want to move -- now they either move, or they provoke. Glitterdust can blind them and if blinded you get sneak attack there too. Summon monster would be a good choice as well (dretch would be my suggestion) since that's a flanking buddy. Assuming you'll be in a party you'll be good with flanking generally, and when you want to range sneak attack then use the grease/glitterdust fun.

I would go for the HP from the favored classes (this would give you around 8+4+4+4+8+8+6+6= 48 HP) Skill points will be good due to your Int 12+6+6+6+12+12 = 54 Skill points I went Rogue, Wizard, Wizard, Wizard, Rogue, Rogue.


Shatter wrote:

Would it be possible to build a Witch/Rogue/Arcane Trickster if you spent the rogue talent on minor magic for mage hand?

I'm in love with the concept, though I'm sure it's probably mediocre at best in actual play. Just wanted to know what other people thought about it.

Technically, no. It's a spell-like ability, not a spell. I think a GM could be talked into it, though. It is an interesting idea. Frankly, I don't know why mage hand isn't on the witch's list. It seems like a witchy thing to do.

If the GM can't be convinced, you might take a level of bard, just for that spell, and the ability to cast a number of useful bard spells. One spontaneous grease or feather fall spell per day could save your bacon. Pick some 0-level spells your witch doesn't have, and you'll have something useful to do just about any time, especially out of combat.

You'd also pick up some weapon and shield proficiencies that may or may not be useful (though a witch with a whip is kinda kinky), gain all knowledge skills as class skills, and if nothing else, you can inspire courage.


Unseen Ray
Prerequisites: Sneak Attack +1d6, ability to cast one or more ray spells that deal hit point damage.
Benefits: deal an additional +1d6 damage with ray spells when the target is denied their Dexterity bonus to AC.

Stealth Magic
Prerequisites: Skill Focus Stealth, Quickened Spell
Benefits: You may apply the Quickened Spell feat to the following spells at only +1 spell slot level instead of the normal +4.
0 Level: ghost sound, mage hand
1st Level: disguise self, obscuring mist
2nd Level: darkness, invisibility
3rd Level: blink, invisibility sphere
4th Level: dimension door, greater invisibility
5th Level: seeming, passwall
6th Level: analyze dweomer, mislead
7th Level: mass invisibility, phase door

You also gain the ability to spend a spell slot as an immediate action once per round to gain a bonus to a stealth, disable devise or sleight of hand check. The bonus is 2 plus twice the level of the spent spell slot and may be applied after a roll is made, but before determining success or failure. You may not spend 0 level slots in this way.

Serpent Fingers
School transmutation; Level druid 2, sorcerer/wizard 2
Casting Time 1 standard action
Components V, S, M (a snake fang)
Range personal
Targets self
Duration instantaneous
Saving Throw Will partial; Spell Resistance no

Your fingers become sharp points and a supernatural speed over takes you.

Upon completion of the spell make two melee touch attacks so long as two or more hands are free, otherwise make only one attack. Each attack is a light natural piercing attack that deals 1d6 damage plus your Strength modifier. You may make an additional attack for every 5 ranks you have in the sleight of hand skill.

Anyone attacked by this spell must make a Will save or count as flat-footed against the attack(s). Only one save is made and that save applies to all attacks made against that target by this spell. Add your spell caster level to your rogue levels (if any) if the target has improved uncanny dodge.

You may not cast this spell if you have no hands free.

Strike and Fade
School illusion; Level bard 1, sorcerer/wizard 1
Casting Time 1 standard action
Components V, S, M (a weapon)
Range touch
Targets one weapon
Duration 1 minute
Saving Throw none; Spell Resistance no

You infuse a weapon with illusionary magic. This magic will release when the weapon strikes true.

Whenever the affected weapon deals damage the wielder becomes invisible as per the spell for one round. This ends the effect of Strike and Fade.

Special: you may trade this spell for obscuring mist on the Stealth Magic spell list.

------------------

I think part of the problem is the simple fact of low level rogue/wizards lacking good options. Maybe if we focused on that we could have a viable prestige class. Just saying.


Lots of good ideas here. Me likee!


I don't want to interrupt the great ideas here, but I think it's clear that the AT has a special role in most parties, and like any class, it should play to it's strengths.

The Create Wondrous Item feat can save you and your party some serious cash. Who doesn't want a handy haversack or some cool boots 1/2 price? If you have a full caster who can do it, don't bother. If you don't, the feat can create a load of nice toys for everyone.

For the AT, there are certain items a rogue or wiz/sor/bar wouldn't desperately need, but make perfect sense for the magical rogue. In no particular order, as soon as you can afford it:

Spell-storing weapon, cloak of etherealness, robe of stars, almost any boots, belts, bags, etc. Wands of improved invisibility and empowered (or heightened) damage spells. Headband of intellect. Bracers, obviously, amulets, and plenty of scrolls for those once-a-month lifesaver spells you'd never have prepared.

The robe of stars has a unique feature that really works for the AT. +5 shuriken. +5 weapons bypass all kinds of DR. You have lame BAB, but +5 added to your dex bonus means a reasonable chance to hit. Add sneak attack, and it can really hurt in the surprise round. And you didn't cast a spell.

Go astral, cast whatever spells work for you, then come back swinging. The +1 to saves and the ability to go astral any time is just a bonus. The downside is that the shuriken don't come back for a month, but it's a nice "oops" option.

The cloak of etherealness lets you actually see (vaguely) what's going on, and force effects still work. Magic missile them from off-plane safety. Once you get the capstone, you add sneak attack to it, too, and you don't miss.

The AT can make good use of items that are only so-so for straight classes.

I will now add that a ring as your bonded item is the shiznit. Hard to lose, and you can add invisibility, protection, and whatever else to it at half price, slightly more when you add new abilities. The "oops" spell when you really need it makes you very hard to contain.

Qadira

0gre wrote:
Except how is he sneak attacking with his ray of frost 'all day long'? Similarly scorching ray... Shocking grasp he has to cast then move in to flank or he gets nailed with an AoO so he's not likely doing that all day long either. It's tough to sneak attack with ranged spells more than once/ encounter when you don't have greater invis.

Cantrips is how he is SAing with RoF all day long. Sure he only gets it when the foe is Flatfooted. Scorching ray he uses a wand most of the time, and Shocking grasp should work pretty well on occasions you just don't want him in melee all the time because of low hps. And my "all day long" phrase wasn't meant to mean ever single attack all the time. Just that he will have plenty of them available for use if and when he can set up to use them.

Cheliax

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
james maissen wrote:


You are better off using a rouge with UMD to accomplish most of this class and that should tell you how sad it really is.

-James

I was thinking the same thing. You can accomplish a lot with UMD. I was checking out the feat in Complete Arcane called "Double Wand Wielder". That might be good for the rogue/UMD combo.


William Bryan wrote:
james maissen wrote:


You are better off using a rouge with UMD to accomplish most of this class and that should tell you how sad it really is.

-James

I was thinking the same thing. You can accomplish a lot with UMD. I was checking out the feat in Complete Arcane called "Double Wand Wielder". That might be good for the rogue/UMD combo.

The biggest problem with that line of thought is the crap DC of the wands, and the fact that the AT can still choose other spells to cast besides the direct combat spells...

It's kind of like saying, "The wizard sucks because a rogue with UMD can do what he does."

It's just not really true.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Benicio Del Espada wrote:

Anybody got a build for a rog3/wiz3? This is likely the worst level of suck. How can you make this guy fun to play?

Let's say 20 pt. buy, standard treasure (16,000 gp).
If you have one you're playing, put him up here!

Give him one or two more levels of rogue, gets you some nice tricks more sneak attack and skills.

The other factor of that answer really depends on what you define as "fun", and how much of it (if any) overlaps my personal definition. My original AT started from a rouge4/sorcerer6 I went two levels of rougue, 6 levels of sorcerer and did the other two rouge levels before hitting the AT.


Abraham spalding wrote:

[

The biggest problem with that line of thought is the crap DC of the wands, and the fact that the AT can still choose other spells to cast besides the direct combat spells...

A wand of scorching ray will give you one ray at a time, at 90 gp a pop. A wand of greater invisibility goes for 420 gp per shot, and will last you 7 rounds.

Quote:


It's kind of like saying, "The wizard sucks because a rogue with UMD can do what he does."

It's just not really true.

Well, if you have a REALLY rich rogue, maybe. =0)

Spellcasting is awesome. A wizard without spells is basically a commoner with a good will save. An AT without spells is a rogue with a lousy BAB. And a good will save...


Benicio Del Espada wrote:
Abraham spalding wrote:

[

The biggest problem with that line of thought is the crap DC of the wands, and the fact that the AT can still choose other spells to cast besides the direct combat spells...

A wand of scorching ray will give you one ray at a time, at 90 gp a pop. A wand of greater invisibility goes for 420 gp per shot, and will last you 7 rounds.

Quote:


It's kind of like saying, "The wizard sucks because a rogue with UMD can do what he does."

It's just not really true.

Well, if you have a REALLY rich rogue, maybe. =0)

Spellcasting is awesome. A wizard without spells is basically a commoner with a good will save. An AT without spells is a rogue with a lousy BAB. And a good will save...

However you forget that the AT won't be out of spells for the same reason that the wizard isn't... 0th level spells. Beyond that to say, "If I ignore or take away all of this then you suck" about half of a character's class features is a bit silly. It would be like saying, "If I take sneak attack away from rogues they aren't any good."

Yes a rogue (a rich rogue as you put it) can do most (not all) of what the AT can do... the wizard can do a lot of what the AT can do... but neither one of them can do all of it.

Let's consider what your other option would be without this prestige class:

Wizard x/ Rogue x.

Now if you think that the AT "sucks" then consider the poor shape a wizard/rogue without it would be in. With the AT you can get most of both for 10 levels.

That's 10 levels of spell casting, 10 levels of sneak attack, and other things thrown on top of it (stuff you normally can't do).

IF you didn't have AT you could have 5 levels of spell casting and 5 levels of sneak attack in those same 10 levels... but you couldn't have both.

And that's what the prestige class is. It's a balance of both. You get the spells, you get the sneak attack, you get some of the skills, you get several other useful tricks (some would be quite expensive for either class to duplicate like the still and silent spells several times a day with no adjustment to spell level).

To duplicate this class in its entirety would take too much from either the rogue or the wizard to do and be successful. In my experience even at the "hard part" of playing an AT it is quite possible to be a contributing member of your party, and to do so without being a burden. The AT offers options that cannot be had without it (full casting and sneak attack progression), and offers a capstone before any of the base classes will get one (something that is often overlooked with the prestige classes... you get your capstone about 4~5 levels earlier than anyone else).

Shadow Lodge

Fake Healer wrote:
0gre wrote:
Except how is he sneak attacking with his ray of frost 'all day long'? Similarly scorching ray... Shocking grasp he has to cast then move in to flank or he gets nailed with an AoO so he's not likely doing that all day long either. It's tough to sneak attack with ranged spells more than once/ encounter when you don't have greater invis.
Cantrips is how he is SAing with RoF all day long. Sure he only gets it when the foe is Flatfooted. Scorching ray he uses a wand most of the time, and Shocking grasp should work pretty well on occasions you just don't want him in melee all the time because of low hps. And my "all day long" phrase wasn't meant to mean ever single attack all the time. Just that he will have plenty of them available for use if and when he can set up to use them.

Without Improved invisible ranged sneak attack is maybe 2 attacks per encounter. Sorry, that doesn't meet the definition of 'All Day Long' in my book.


0gre wrote:
Fake Healer wrote:
0gre wrote:
Except how is he sneak attacking with his ray of frost 'all day long'? Similarly scorching ray... Shocking grasp he has to cast then move in to flank or he gets nailed with an AoO so he's not likely doing that all day long either. It's tough to sneak attack with ranged spells more than once/ encounter when you don't have greater invis.
Cantrips is how he is SAing with RoF all day long. Sure he only gets it when the foe is Flatfooted. Scorching ray he uses a wand most of the time, and Shocking grasp should work pretty well on occasions you just don't want him in melee all the time because of low hps. And my "all day long" phrase wasn't meant to mean ever single attack all the time. Just that he will have plenty of them available for use if and when he can set up to use them.

Without Improved invisible ranged sneak attack is maybe 2 attacks per encounter. Sorry, that doesn't meet the definition of 'All Day Long' in my book.

Grease, Glitterdust, Blindness/deafness, and Ghoul Touch are just three other ways to cause your opponents to be flat footed to you which means you can follow up with rays afterwards. Spectral hand is a nice spell to have in a wand for those touch spells in this case too.

Shadow Lodge

Abraham spalding wrote:
Grease, Glitterdust, Blindness/deafness, and Ghoul Touch are just three other ways to cause your opponents to be flat footed to you which means you can follow up with rays afterwards. Spectral hand is a nice spell to have in a wand for those touch spells in this case too.

Umm... generally if you can get them with those spells then you move on to targets that are active in combat. It's a poor tactical choice to attack the guy who is helpless or nearly helpless for 3+ rounds. But yeah, you can sneak attack blind and helpless targets.

As for grease, unless they are only flat footed when they are actually moving and end their turn in the grease. Usually by the time you use the ray they are likely not in the grease anymore. In my experience that's not extremely common. Usually they either move OUT of the grease or they just stand still.


I agree with you partially. If there aren't many opponents then it's not a huge deal to simply let all everyone wail on the person that failed its save. However ghoul touch only lasts for 1d6+2 rounds so it is unlikely to last the entire combat. If you can get it off on an opponent that your allies are not attacking you can likely drop him in the next three rounds that you have sneak attack, leaving your allies to handle other threats and not take damage. The key here is the enemy must still be handled even if it is paralyzed or blinded (glitterdust gives a new save every round... if it fails you get to sneak attack again but there is no guarantee how long the blindness will last and hence the need to kill it quickly still) and you set yourself up to be able to do that without relying on someone else providing flanking.

Also with ghoul touch your friends (and enemies) aren't going to want to be around the target meaning he's a piece of battlefield control terrian too.

Pyrotechnics is another nice spell for blinding (and is will save dependent giving three means to blind with a different save throw for each) that lasts a limited number of rounds too (again a good reason to nail the guy while you have a chance).

The arcane trickster should generally set a guy up and then kick him while he is down.

Wizards are good at the set up -- rogues at the kicking while down... the AT simply does both.

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