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Lvl 8 Magus in the Arena of Doom


Round 3 - Revised Magus: Playtest

Cheliax

Human Magus 8
Str 10
Dex 22
Con 12
Int 18
Wis 10
Cha 8

Traits
Heirloom Weapon (Aldori Dueling Sword)
Fast Talker

Feats
1h: Combat Casting
1: Weapon Finesse
3: Aldori Duelist (This is basically Dervish Dance for the Aldori Dueling Sword. It’s silly that a feat like that should only be available to one weapon)
5: Dodge
5b: Weapon Focus (Aldori Dueling Sword)
7: Blind Fight

Arcane Pool: 7

Arcana
3: Concentrate
6: Empowered Magic

Equipment (33k)
+2 Mithral Chain Shirt (4100)
+2 Aldori Dueling Sword (8020)
Light Hammer
Ring of Protection +1 (2000)
Amulet of Natural Armor +1 (2000)
Belt of Incredible Dexterity +2 (4000)
Headband of Vast Intelligence +2 (4000)
Cloak of Resistance +2 (4000)
Pearl of Power 1 (1000) x2
Bag of Holding I (2500)
5x Cure Light Potions

HP 59
AC 25

Fort 9
Ref 10
Will 8

Init +6
BAB +6/+1

Full Attack
1-Hand: +15/10 d8+8
2-Hand: +15/10 d8+11
Arcane Pool can add +2 enhancement bonus to hit and damage

Spells
1st
4x Magic Missile
1x Shield

2nd
3x Scorching Ray
1x Glitter Dust
1x Mirror Image

3rd
1x Fly
1x Haste
1x Displacement

The rules will be the same as in my Magus v1 Arena of Doom. One randomly determined monster from each CR from 4 until death. Between fights the Magus can use a Pearl of Power or drink a potion. He may also take advantage of healing from sideline cleric (3x CLW, 3x CMW, 2x CSW).

CR4 – Sea Hag
Sea Hag wins Initiative. Uses Evil Eye. Magus saves (6)
Magus passes Horrific Appearance check (12). Magus enhances weapon, moves, and attacks. Hits (6) and deals 15 damage (23hp remain)
Sea Hag full attacks, hits once (19,9). 6 damage (53 remain)
Magus uses Spell Combat. Passes concentration (13). Magic Missile deals 11 damage (12hp remain). Magus full attacks hits twice (13,13), kills Hag.

---
Between fights Magus uses a Pearl of Power to recover Magic Missile and receives a Cure Light for 10hp and Magus is at 59 again.
---

CR5 – Mummy
Mummy wins Initiative. Magus fails save vs Aura of Despair. Lasts 1 round! The magus will actually survive! Mummy moves forward 40’
Magus sits about and thinks about what he knows of Mummys. Good check reveals weakness to fire. Quite paralyzed until the end of the turn. Then just lying about.
Mummy attacks and hits (11). 14 damage (45 remain). Natural 20 on Mummy’s Rots save.
Magus enhances weapon (+1 and Flaming) and stands. AoO hits (13) for 14 damage (31 remains). Magus attacks misses (2)
Mummy attacks, hits (18), deals 17 damage (14 remains).
Magus uses Spell Combat, concentration check passes (3). Scorching Ray hits twice (15,11) and deals 16 and 22 damage (22 remains). Full attacks hits once (10,2) and deals 12 plus 10 fire. Mummy dies.

---
Ouch. Cure Serious, please. Only 17hp healed. Potion time. 6 more. 37hp now. It’ll have to do.
---

CR6 – Will o’ Wisp
Magus Wins Initiative. Casts Magic Missile, 10 damage (30 remain). Magus retreats 30’.
Will o’ Wisp extinguishes natural light. Moves forward 50’.
Magus uses Total Defense.
Will o’ Wisp moves forward 10’ and Shocks, hits (15) for 6 (31 remain).
Magus improves weapon (+2), uses Spell Combat, concentration check passes (13). Glitterdust outlines Will o’ Wisp but doesn’t blind (10). Full Attack crits once (20,5) and confirms (17). Deals 32 damage. Die you Wispy bastard!

---
Cost a fair bit spell wise, but that went well. Cure Moderate from the Cleric hits for 23 to put the Magus up to 54hp.
---

Thoughts so Far:
The first fights have gone well. No particular changes from what I saw when I used the last Magus version with the podcast changes included. Although I was initially disheartened to see the loss of the Weapon Bond feature, the new feature really came in handy when I could easily pop flaming on for the Mummy fight. Saved my butt. Just enough utility to be able to do things like Glitterdust the Wisp which was also handy. So far, it's been solid and enjoyable.

More to come later. Must sleep eventually. Coming up next is a Warmonger Devil! Will our hero survive? Probably not! That thing has a trident!


YuenglingDragon wrote:

Human Magus 8

Str 10
Dex 22
Con 12
Int 18
Wis 10
Cha 8

Traits
Heirloom Weapon (Aldori Dueling Sword)
Fast Talker

Feats
1h: Combat Casting
1: Weapon Finesse
3: Aldori Duelist (This is basically Dervish Dance for the Aldori Dueling Sword. It’s silly that a feat like that should only be available to one weapon)
5: Dodge
5b: Weapon Focus (Aldori Dueling Sword)
7: Blind Fight

Arcane Pool: 7

Arcana
3: Concentrate
6: Empowered Magic

Equipment (33k)
+2 Mithral Chain Shirt (4100)
+2 Aldori Dueling Sword (8020)
Light Hammer
Ring of Protection +1 (2000)
Amulet of Natural Armor +1 (2000)
Belt of Incredible Dexterity +2 (4000)
Headband of Vast Intelligence +2 (4000)
Cloak of Resistance +2 (4000)
Pearl of Power 1 (1000) x2
Bag of Holding I (2500)
5x Cure Light Potions

HP 59
AC 25

Fort 9
Ref 10
Will 8

Init +6
BAB +6/+1

Full Attack
1-Hand: +15/10 d8+8
2-Hand: +15/10 d8+11
Arcane Pool can add +2 enhancement bonus to hit and damage

Spells
1st
4x Magic Missile
1x Shield

2nd
3x Scorching Ray
1x Glitter Dust
1x Mirror Image

3rd
1x Fly
1x Haste
1x Displacement

The rules will be the same as in my Magus v1 Arena of Doom. One randomly determined monster from each CR from 4 until death. Between fights the Magus can use a Pearl of Power or drink a potion. He may also take advantage of healing from sideline cleric (3x CLW, 3x CMW, 2x CSW).

CR4 – Sea Hag
Sea Hag wins Initiative. Uses Evil Eye. Magus saves (6)
Magus passes Horrific Appearance check (12). Magus enhances weapon, moves, and attacks. Hits (6) and deals 15 damage (23hp remain)
Sea Hag full attacks, hits once (19,9). 6 damage (53 remain)
Magus uses Spell Combat. Passes concentration (13). Magic Missile deals 11 damage (12hp remain). Magus full attacks hits twice (13,13), kills Hag.

---
Between fights Magus uses a Pearl of Power to recover Magic Missile and receives a Cure Light for 10hp and Magus is at 59 again.
---

CR5 – Mummy
Mummy wins Initiative....

Where is Aldori Duelist from? I can´t find it.

Cheliax

You won't find it because its homebrew. We don't see any reason why Dervish Dance should be restricted to one weapon. So Aldori Duelist works much the same way. There wouldn't be much difference if I used Dervish Dance and a Scimitar. The extra crit range probably makes up for lower damage when not using Spell Combat. I just chose the Aldori sword because A) flavor/background and B) my current character runs a falchion and I didn't want to run such a similar weapon on my new PC.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
YuenglingDragon wrote:
You won't find it because its homebrew. We don't see any reason why Dervish Dance should be restricted to one weapon. So Aldori Duelist works much the same way. There wouldn't be much difference if I used Dervish Dance and a Scimitar. The extra crit range probably makes up for lower damage when not using Spell Combat. I just chose the Aldori sword because A) flavor/background and B) my current character runs a falchion and I didn't want to run such a similar weapon on my new PC.

Technically, if it's the same feat as Dervish Dance for the Aldori Dueling Sword, your character would not qualify for the feat (Heirloom Weapon lets you wield that one weapon, but you're not proficient in the exotic Aldori Dueling Sword in general, and Dervish Dance requires proficiency).


Dervish Dance states

"When wielding a scimitar with one hand, you can
use your Dexterity modifier instead of your Strength modifier
on melee attack and damage rolls."

So technically you wouldn't be able to use the aldori dueling sword two handed and gain the benefits above. If you want to say that your homebrew feat is better than Dervish Dance, that's your perogative. However, don't try to pass it off as the same feat with different weapon.

Cheliax

Jon Otaguro 428 wrote:

Dervish Dance states

"When wielding a scimitar with one hand, you can
use your Dexterity modifier instead of your Strength modifier
on melee attack and damage rolls."

So technically you wouldn't be able to use the aldori dueling sword two handed and gain the benefits above. If you want to say that your homebrew feat is better than Dervish Dance, that's your perogative. However, don't try to pass it off as the same feat with different weapon.

No need to get rude about it. I wasn't explaining the whole thing because it's not really relevant. But here we go.

Dervish Dance also makes a weapon that cannot normally be Finessed qualify for that feat. It was our decision that we would remove the one hand restriction because the Aldori Sword could already be used with Finesse.

Rogue Eidolon, Heirloom weapon says you "are considered proficient with that specific weapon." Proficient is the word used in all feat requirements, etc. I think it qualifies. However, if I lose or break the Aldori Sword I start the game with, I am not profiecient with other versions of the same weapon.

In any case, this is all really irrelevant. The scimitar is a mechanically better weapon and the extra crit range makes up for the 3 extra damage I can do when I'm not using Spell Combat, I assure you.

If the feat's existence really bothers you, I welcome you to not read this report. That's ok with me.


It wasn't my intention to be rude, I apologize if my previous post sounds rude.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
YuenglingDragon wrote:
Rogue Eidolon, Heirloom weapon says you "are considered proficient with that specific weapon." Proficient is the word used in all feat requirements, etc. I think it qualifies. However, if I lose or break the Aldori Sword I start the game with, I am not profiecient with other versions of the same weapon.

The feat pre-req indicates that you must be "proficient with scimitar", rather than proficient with one particular scimitar. For this reason,. for instance, a Rogue who hasn't taken Martial Weapon Proficiency cannot dodge the prereq for Dervish Dance with the Heirloom Weapon trait. I believe the same applies here.


My intention in reading builds is to get ideas. If the centerpiece of the build is based around a homebrew feat that isn't technically the same as a feat in the game, then it makes it difficult to use that build in another game.

I don't think I agree that the +3 damage (plus Aldori sword is d8 instead of d6, so it's really +4) is not better than a scimitars higher threat range. Also, if you factor in power attack, that could really be a difference of +7 at 12th level.

I don't argue with your groups right to use the feat and build as you like. It just has less usefullness to other people.

Cheliax

CR7 – Warmonger Devil

Magus wins Initiative. Casts Displacement.
Devil advances 20’ throws net, hits (17), gets through displacement. Magus is entangled. Also sad.
Magus casts Gaseous Form with Arcane Pool. Cast defensively fails (1), Magus uses Concentration Arcana and passes (18). Concentration check to cast in net passes (16).
Devil full attacks (5,18,12), 1 Trident hit, 2 leg hits, 1 leg gets through displacement, deals 0 damage due to DR10 from Gaseous Form.
Magus dismisses Gaseous Form. Is also terrified of the consequences of that action.
Devil full attacks (4,20,16), threat does not confirm (5), leg attacks passes Displacement. Deals 5 damage (49 remain).
Magus 5’ steps and uses Spell Combat, concentration is good (3). Magic Missile deals 16 damage (68 remain). One attack hits (15,7), deals 4 damage (64 remains).
Devil Full Attacks, no hits (8,17,12). Glee.
Magus Full Attacks (4,20), crit does not confirm. 12 damage (52 remains).
Devil Full Attacks, trident hits (13,10,16), misses due to Displacement.
Magus Full Attacks (2,20), crit does not confirm again. 9 damage (43 remains)
Devil attacks (17,2,6), trident hits and passes Displacement. 13 damage (36 remain)
Magus uses Spell Combat, Concentration is good (15). Magic Missile deals 12 damage (31 remains) and full attack (13,11) one hit deals 11 damage (20 remains)
Devil Full Attacks (5,19,9) one leg hits and passes Displacement. Deals 8 damage (28 remains)
Magus uses Spell Combat, concentration check is good (19). Magic Missile rolls high and hits for 17 (3hp remain). One sword hit (18,12), 6 damage, Devil dies!

---
Cure Serious seems in order here 24 hp regained up to 52. Last Pearl of Power regains a final use of Magic Missile.
---

Man, Spell Pool saved my butt. I think it's a really great ability that allows the Magus to blur the line just enough between prepared and spontaneous casting.

Cheliax

Rogue Eidolon wrote:


The feat pre-req indicates that you must be "proficient with scimitar", rather than proficient with one particular scimitar. For this reason,. for instance, a Rogue who hasn't taken Martial Weapon Proficiency cannot dodge the prereq for Dervish Dance with the Heirloom Weapon trait. I believe the same applies here.

Agree to disagree?

You're not going to convince me that the words "proficient with weapon" in some way do not mean that.

Andoran

To have it clarified, you should use Weapon Focus (Heirloom). That way you don't pick up normal versions and get the benefit.

Cheliax

CR8 – Treant (Note: my original roll was for something that wasn’t in the Bestiary. As it was only located in the collaborator work area of d20PFSRD and thus not necessarily 100% accurate, I re-rolled.)

Magus wins initiative. Knowledge Nature (17) reveals weakness to fire. Casts Shield. Enhances weapon (+1 and Flaming)
Treant moves forward 20’ and slams with Power Attack and hits (19), does not confirm. Deals 23 damage (29 remains).
Magus takes 5’ Step back. He casts Scorching Ray, both rays hit for 19 and 27 damage, including vulnerability (68 remain).
Treant tramples, moving over and just to the other side of the Magus. Reflex save is insufficient (7). Deals 20 damage (9 remains).
Magus uses Spell Combat, concentration check is good (5). Empowered Arcana Scorching Rays hit (2,17) and deal 27 and 33 damage (8 remain). One attack hits (13,7) deals 19 damage. Treant dies.

---

Potion heals 9hp (18hp now). Cure Serious from the Captain Sideline the Cleric only heals 18 for a total of 36hp.

Well, Shield was a total waste there. Trample was rough. The Empower Arcana saved my butt, helping me deal a ton of damage against the vulnerable to fire Treant. I now only have 1 Magic Missile, Mirror Image, Haste and Fly. I also have one remaining Arcana point.

So far I've been really impressed. The Arcana and Pool abilities have been clutch as hell. Spell Combat is one of my favorite class abilities ever.

The Marid up next and is apparently going to be the thing that kills the Magus.

Cheliax

Marid fight tomorrow. I suspect doom befalls our hero then. I've looked it over and it's quite nasty, even on land. I think I'll ignore the normal penalty it takes for touching the ground, though. Or maybe re-roll.

In the Treant fight, I only had the Treant move normal speed during its Trample which put it in range for a full attack. It was what allowed me to win. It doesn't seem from my reading of Trample that you can Trample with a charge alowing it to move further since Trample is a Full Round Action. If I did that wrong the Magus definitely died there.

Sczarni

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Very informative playtest YD.

Look forward to seeing more

Andoran

He's had a good run, and against some very tough monsters. The mummy, for example, and then a will-o-wisp right afterwards.

Cheliax

OK, so after consulting with the fellow who is normally my GM, I have re-rolled the Marid for something more appropriate for a land battle. I got a shark. So I re-rolled again. I got a Greater Air Elemental.

The Fight is short and sad and goes like this.

Air Elemental wins initiative. Turn into a Whirlwind and moves to suck Magus into the fierce winds. Magus fails reflex saving throw (9). Takes 17 damage.

Magus tries to cast Fly. The violent weather is too much for the Magus and he fails his concentration check. Bye bye Fly. Death follows from slam damage or being dropped from a great height, your choice.

---

So, all in all, a good showing. I love Pool Spell and the other class features worked well, too. I should probably have used Spellstrike somewhere in there but it's not all that enticing for me. An auto-hitting Magic Missile seems mostly better than Shocking Grasp. Chill Touch, though, I need to prepare that one in the future.


This was a REALLY fun read. Thanks for going through all the trouble of playtesting it and writing it all out. I might just try something similar.

One question though: How come he didn't cast fly in earlier battles where his opponents were often land bound? A trampling treant, being a melee brute, can't do anything to a creature flying suitably high up.

He would lose out on a lot of his melee abilities, but he could still pelt the enemy to death with arrows, a wand of magic missile, or whatever else he might have on hand.

It certainly would have saved him a bucket load of hit points with which to use against the air elemental.

Cheliax

Well, in the case of the Treant, it has DR 10/Slashing. I couldn't hurt it with arrows if I has wanted to.

Generally, I took fly just so that I could fight something that flew but I didn't want to use to just shoot the crap out of enemies. I wanted to, as much as possible, represent the Magus in a real party situation. In that case, Fly isn't terribly productive since someone else in the party will just get his butt kicked.

Of course, having written that out I realize that it's kind of unfair to ask the Magus to do all of the damage and take all of the hits while still protecting hypothetical party members. Still, I would have had serious sadness if I used Fly to cheese win a fight and then couldn't fly when I really needed to.

---

I actually had quite a bit of fun running through this. It was pretty enjoyable.

I used the d20PFSRD Monster DB for getting all the CR appropriate monsters numbered and in one spot. This dice roller allows you to roll a d(anything) which is nice for randomizing which beastie you fight.

I look forward to reading your results if you run an Arena!


I'll second the interesting read on this.


Ditto, i enjoyed reading it, can you make another one? this time i dunno, a party of 3?

Qadira RPG Superstar 2010 Top 32

I loved reading this - thanks very much!

Do you fancy doing a higher level one? Say 12th or 13th?

Cheliax

Nemitri wrote:
Ditto, i enjoyed reading it, can you make another one? this time i dunno, a party of 3?

I've been thinking about it. I have a Cleric and Barbarian build I've been wanting to try out. I'll see if I have time to whip something up.

Thanks to everyone for the kind words regarding this playtest. I'm pleased that my work has paid off for people.

Cheliax

carborundum wrote:

I loved reading this - thanks very much!

Do you fancy doing a higher level one? Say 12th or 13th?

Possibly. It would probably be easier than running the 3-man party playtest.

Taldor

I'd argue the playtest would be more valuable with a party of four 15 point buy, so we're asclose to the baseline for CR as possible.


I'm finding these quite interesting but I have to ask, do you also house-rule that ranged touch spells don't draw AoOs?
I only ask because I notice your Magus doesn't have the close-range arcana.
And from the use of Scorching Ray I've seen it seems like that would particularly mess up the Magus.

Reference:

Pathfinder SRD wrote:
Ranged Touch Spells in Combat: Some spells allow you to make a ranged touch attack as part of the casting of the spell. These attacks are made as part of the spell and do not require a separate action. Ranged touch attacks provoke an attack of opportunity, even if the spell that causes the attacks was cast defensively. Unless otherwise noted, ranged touch attacks cannot be held until a later turn.

Cheliax

Wesley Snacks wrote:

I'm finding these quite interesting but I have to ask, do you also house-rule that ranged touch spells don't draw AoOs?

I only ask because I notice your Magus doesn't have the close-range arcana.
And from the use of Scorching Ray I've seen it seems like that would particularly mess up the Magus.

Reference:

Pathfinder SRD wrote:
Ranged Touch Spells in Combat: Some spells allow you to make a ranged touch attack as part of the casting of the spell. These attacks are made as part of the spell and do not require a separate action. Ranged touch attacks provoke an attack of opportunity, even if the spell that causes the attacks was cast defensively. Unless otherwise noted, ranged touch attacks cannot be held until a later turn.

Crap...

Yeah, I should have been dealing with that issue. I couldn't remember if defensive casting took care of that for me and when I mentioned it to my GM he said yes. He's been playing a lot longer than me so I never bothered to check it.

Balls.

Edit: If it helps, I just checked the Treant's AoO and it missed. I'm not going back over the whole thing, though, so that will have to suit.

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