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Hubble, Bubble, toil and trouble (A Guide to Witches)


Advice

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11 people marked this as a favorite.

I have almost completed my pathfinder guide to witches in Google Docs. I just have 7th, 8th and 9th lvl spells to go to finish it which I hope to do shortly. Please feel free to offer comments / criticisms. I am open to editing it provided I agree with you. Here it is:

Guide to Witches


You might want to make the file public.


Umbral Reaver wrote:
You might want to make the file public.

Indeed. I would love to check it out but I cannot at the moment.


Stomphoof wrote:
Umbral Reaver wrote:
You might want to make the file public.
Indeed. I would love to check it out but I cannot at the moment.

Oh dear. I'm still a noob at Google docs.

Guide to Witches

Does this work now? I clicked on the 'Publish to the Web' option under the 'Share' drop down box. Hopefully that fixes it. Please let me know if you still can't get in.


That works now.

Grand Lodge

you might want to put in a reminder that since folks tend to keep wizards in mind when they think Witch that Scribe Scroll is not a freebie feat for them.

The other thing I would add is that while the Coven hex may not be very useful for PC witches, it can be VERY handy for NPC's of the class.


LazarX wrote:

you might want to put in a reminder that since folks tend to keep wizards in mind when they think Witch that Scribe Scroll is not a freebie feat for them.

The other thing I would add is that while the Coven hex may not be very useful for PC witches, it can be VERY handy for NPC's of the class.

Both valid points. I will update accordingly when I get some time.

Sczarni

Nicely done.

A few minor spelling quibbles aside, solid work.

A couple of things I disagree with, though (as is to be expected).

Dancing Lantern does not just replace the cantrip dancing lights. It creates a nearly permanent, hands-free, actionless light source that you can direct pretty much anywhere.

Consider the Humble Bullseye Lantern

Spoiler:
Lamp/Lantern (bullseye)

A bullseye lantern provides normal light in a 60-foot cone and increases the light level by one step in the area beyond that, out to a 120-foot cone (darkness becomes dim light and dim light becomes normal light). A bullseye lantern does not increase the light level in normal light or bright light. A lantern burns for 6 hours on one pint of oil. You can carry a lantern in one hand.

with the Elf, Gnome, or Half-Elf's Low-Light Vision, and you're looking 120' bright/120' dim down the hallway. Sure, in an outdoor, urban, or otherwise well-lit adventure this is of limited utility. In a large dungeon crawl (such as, say, Age of Worms), the distance given before ambushes has already proven critically important. Plus, it's a 1st level spell, so it's cheap on a scroll/wand, and can be made permanent fairly cheaply as well.

Control Weather may not look like the sexiest spell in the book, but what about when the party absolutely must have some fog cover to escape/infiltrate/etc? How about when the torrential downpour (naturally occurring) impedes your movement through enemy held terrain?

Druid spell:Control Weather

Sure, it's situational, but being able to control such a huge swath of terrain, and in such a dramatic (if locally subtle) fashion can be huge.
Also, the soonest the Druid can get this spell (normally) is Level 13. By then, the Witch has been using her Weather Control Hex each day, every day, for 3 levels.

Definitely not a "Blue" option, but far from "never take this" quality.

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Do you possess Halflings of Golarion? If not, be aware that they get an alternate "Halfling Jinx" racial trait, a lot of enhancements to it, and a Malicious Eye Feat that stacks Jinx effects on top of the Evil Eye Hex.

This combination certainly looks like it could get really nasty with some Feat investment, which Witches can afford to do, and might boost Halflings to a *** racial choice, at least situationally, despite their other disadvantages.

EDIT: Oh, and your Hex list lacks Evil Eye. A rather important oversight.

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I would like to point out that in an optimization guide you should never rate something good "just for flavor". If you want to mention the flavor of something great, but don't give low star abilities higher stars because you like the flavor.

Also, cure light wounds gets 4 stars? Really? I mean its a great spell to have on your list but how often do you get into situations where you're going " I could win this fight all by myself if I just hadn't memorized color spray and had memorized cure light wounds."

Also, some spells may be better for a witch than they are for a wizard simply because they have different spells knowable, not rating the spells as they apply to a witch because they've been rated as they apply to a wizard is a bit of a cop out IMO.

Also, being slow is less of an impact when you take the flight hex.

Liberty's Edge

Okay, I've found a point of disagreement:

Threefold Aspect is awesome, from an optimization perspective. Becoming old is +4 Int as a day long buff. Yeah, that's effectively just 16,000 GP saved on a headband of Int. It costs a spell slot, but I'd say that's definitely worth it. The Wis bonus and Dex penalty balance each other pretty well, and the Str penalty couldn't matter less.


Great guide. A few notes, I would add a section on patron spells. Maybe just a sentence or two each, mainly if it provides spells that aren't on the witch spell list and their general utility. Also you give a low grade (red I think) to Banish Seeming, but if I read it correctly it also cancels Polymorph effects ("return creature to it's natural form"). This is still situational, but it can really nerf that evil druid that's been killing all the crops, or cancel the Enlarged Fighter chopping you all to bits.

Otherwise great job.

Sczarni

Deadmanwalking wrote:

Okay, I've found a point of disagreement:

Threefold Aspect is awesome, from an optimization perspective. Becoming old is +4 Int as a day long buff. Yeah, that's effectively just 16,000 GP saved on a headband of Int. It costs a spell slot, but I'd say that's definitely worth it. The Wis bonus and Dex penalty balance each other pretty well, and the Str penalty couldn't matter less.

missed that one previously.

Netting bonuses to primary stats, being able to swap around in the forms as needed, and disguising yourself, this spell is fantastic!

Grand Lodge

I find your guide rather standoffish and it seems to be writen on a person who's focused solely on DPS and combat with no particular regard to the cultural flavors of the witch itself. A major problem I have with both yours and Treantmonk's guides is the near single minded focus on PC use with no attention to the character as an NPC. NPC casters may cast different spells because their roles are going to be different. Many of these spells that you classify as red are very useful in setting mood and tone. NPCs need love too as game masters need to run these classes as well.

Three-fold Aspect? You pan it but it's the classic Maiden-Mother-Crone motif which can be very impressive if you're looking to impress the superstitious. not to mention the actual mechanical aspects of each of the three modes. And note the duration of this spell 24 hours.

Sleepwalk, again a classic witch type curse to lay on someone and a possibly good plot starter.

Screech. Making your enemies provoke AOO's weak. When you've got a meleer (or three) in the right place, that Screech may result in an instant crapload of damage if you time it right.

One thing also to keep in mind is that Witchs being learned casters have no numerical limit to the spells that they can learn. So there is a decent amount of flex room as far as spell knowledge goes. Also note the value of some of these spells such as cure moderate wounds is the availabiity as wand spells may outstrip thier late placement in the witch spell list.

Dark Archive

LazarX wrote:

I find your guide rather standoffish and it seems to be writen on a person who's focused solely on DPS and combat with no particular regard to the cultural flavors of the witch itself. A major problem I have with both yours and Treantmonk's guides is the near single minded focus on PC use with no attention to the character as an NPC. NPC casters may cast different spells because their roles are going to be different. Many of these spells that you classify as red are very useful in setting mood and tone. NPCs need love too as game masters need to run these classes as well.

Three-fold Aspect? You pan it but it's the classic Maiden-Mother-Crone motif which can be very impressive if you're looking to impress the superstitious. not to mention the actual mechanical aspects of each of the three modes. And note the duration of this spell 24 hours.

Sleepwalk, again a classic witch type curse to lay on someone and a possibly good plot starter.

Screech. Making your enemies provoke AOO's weak. When you've got a meleer (or three) in the right place, that Screech may result in an instant crapload of damage if you time it right.

One thing also to keep in mind is that Witchs being learned casters have no numerical limit to the spells that they can learn. So there is a decent amount of flex room as far as spell knowledge goes. Also note the value of some of these spells such as cure moderate wounds is the availabiity as wand spells may outstrip thier late placement in the witch spell list.

A bit blunt but not wholly inaccurate.

Admittedly guides of these type are designed to assist the player to understand the basics of the class and utilize all it's options to end a challenge as swiftly as possible, this usually means taking the enemies hit points to zero. There's nothing wrong with this style of play and since it's the most common type of game out there a guide written for it is fine.

However, the witch has a completely different style of play built into it. This is a class that is designed to make your enemies fear the havoc and mayhem you can bring down on them. To wake up screaming and begging you to just please let them die.

Whether your plaything has 1 or a 100 hit points left matters less to a witch then how quickly they are blinded, covered in boils, unable to resist any effect and passed out in a corner. Witches are about Save or Suck and give them a moment and you won't ever succeed on a save.

This guide is a good start to expounding what a Witch can do, and hopefully the rest of us here can help tweak and optimize it to show just how awesome this class can be.


Few things you've missed in terms of spells/etc:

Moonstruck is amazingly good in the situations it's good in. Utterly shutting down enemy spellcasters/archers for example. Oh, those 8 archery feats you had? Great. Too bad you now have claws and were forced to drop your absurdly magical bow.

Honestly think forced reincarnation should be blue. Primarily because reincarnate doesn't just change the physical form. It also denotes two permanent negative levels. As in creature has -2 to everything, reduced casting, etc, etc. Using an ability whose save DC levels with you to turn a CR 18 into a CR 16 in one go is pretty sick.

Followup with a quickened enervation on top of that to make it even worse.

As others have said, 3fold aspect is disgustingly good. There's no reason not to have this running every day, along with mage armor and false life.

On Alchemy: It's a nice go-to for those lower-levels when you may just need to hurt some zombies. Being able to whip up and hand out a stack of invisibility potions is pretty rad, too.

Dark Archive

Here's my contribution, my take on the Patrons. Though they only add a handful of spells they can really change the way a witch is played and shouldn't be underestimated.

Patron review

And I afgree Three-fold Aspect and moonstruck are surprisingly potent spells.


c873788 wrote:
Stomphoof wrote:
Umbral Reaver wrote:
You might want to make the file public.
Indeed. I would love to check it out but I cannot at the moment.

Oh dear. I'm still a noob at Google docs.

Guide to Witches

Does this work now? I clicked on the 'Publish to the Web' option under the 'Share' drop down box. Hopefully that fixes it. Please let me know if you still can't get in.

I am not able to save it as a pdf. It seem more permissions need to be opened up.

To the right of the original document is a dropdown list under the word action. In that list is the word share. You can then click on share settings and change private to "anyone with this link". It will only be for that particular file so everything else still stays private.


wraithstrike wrote:
c873788 wrote:
Stomphoof wrote:
Umbral Reaver wrote:
You might want to make the file public.
Indeed. I would love to check it out but I cannot at the moment.

Oh dear. I'm still a noob at Google docs.

Guide to Witches

Does this work now? I clicked on the 'Publish to the Web' option under the 'Share' drop down box. Hopefully that fixes it. Please let me know if you still can't get in.

I am not able to save it as a pdf. It seem more permissions need to be opened up.

To the right of the original document is a dropdown list under the word action. In that list is the word share. You can then click on share settings and change private to "anyone with this link". It will only be for that particular file so everything else still stays private.

I have changed the share settings as you have requested. Hope that helps.

Thanks to everyone for their feedback so far. I will try to respond to everyone who has made the effort to comment so far when I have time as well as edit the guide once I review closely what each of you have suggested.


c873788 wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
c873788 wrote:
Stomphoof wrote:
Umbral Reaver wrote:
You might want to make the file public.
Indeed. I would love to check it out but I cannot at the moment.

Oh dear. I'm still a noob at Google docs.

Guide to Witches

Does this work now? I clicked on the 'Publish to the Web' option under the 'Share' drop down box. Hopefully that fixes it. Please let me know if you still can't get in.

I am not able to save it as a pdf. It seem more permissions need to be opened up.

To the right of the original document is a dropdown list under the word action. In that list is the word share. You can then click on share settings and change private to "anyone with this link". It will only be for that particular file so everything else still stays private.

I have changed the share settings as you have requested. Hope that helps.

Thanks to everyone for their feedback so far. I will try to respond to everyone who has made the effort to comment so far when I have time as well as edit the guide once I review closely what each of you have suggested.

Well done guide. Although my meat shields benefit highly from the spell "Screech." The Outflank feat they each have turns them into meat grinders once i continue screeching.


LazarX wrote:

you might want to put in a reminder that since folks tend to keep wizards in mind when they think Witch that Scribe Scroll is not a freebie feat for them.

The other thing I would add is that while the Coven hex may not be very useful for PC witches, it can be VERY handy for NPC's of the class.

Both pointers now updated in guide.


psionichamster wrote:

Nicely done.

A few minor spelling quibbles aside, solid work.

A couple of things I disagree with, though (as is to be expected).

Dancing Lantern does not just replace the cantrip dancing lights. It creates a nearly permanent, hands-free, actionless light source that you can direct pretty much anywhere.

Consider the Humble Bullseye Lantern** spoiler omitted **

with the Elf, Gnome, or Half-Elf's Low-Light Vision, and you're looking 120' bright/120' dim down the hallway. Sure, in an outdoor, urban, or otherwise well-lit adventure this is of limited utility. In a large dungeon crawl (such as, say, Age of Worms), the distance given before ambushes has already proven critically important. Plus, it's a 1st level spell, so it's cheap on a scroll/wand, and can be made permanent fairly cheaply as well.

Control Weather may not look like the sexiest spell in the book, but what about when the party absolutely must have some fog cover to escape/infiltrate/etc? How about when the torrential downpour (naturally occurring) impedes your movement through enemy held terrain?

Druid spell:Control Weather

Sure, it's situational, but being able to control such a huge swath of terrain, and in such a dramatic (if locally subtle) fashion can be huge.
Also, the soonest the Druid can get this spell (normally) is Level 13. By then, the Witch has been using her Weather Control Hex each day, every day, for 3 levels.

Definitely not a "Blue"...

The cantrip I was referring to was 'light' as opposed to 'dancing lights'. The 'Dancing Lantern' spell has a better range but I still think it's only an ok rating given that you can mostly get away with just using the 'light' cantrip. I've updated entry to mention the cantrip specifically.

I've upgraded the Control Weather hex from bad to ok. It's still too situational to be given more than ok when you compare it to other hex options but I can see why you think it's not a 'bad' rating.

Thanks for your input.


ShadowcatX wrote:
I would like to point out that in an optimization guide you should never rate something good "just for flavor". If you want to mention the flavor of something great, but don't give low star abilities higher stars because you like the flavor.

I take your point about flavour but it's only done for a couple of entries and I've made sure that people are aware of this by commenting on it in the ensuing description text.

ShadowcatX wrote:
Also, cure light wounds gets 4 stars? Really? I mean its a great spell to have on your list but how often do you get into situations where you're going " I could win this fight all by myself if I just hadn't memorized color spray and had memorized cure light wounds."

Yes, cure light wounds definitely gets 4 stars as a first level spell. I imagine some wizards and sorcerers would give their firstborn away to be able to cast healing spells at a low level. Your argument about memorizing color spray to win the fight could be applied just as well to CLW if the fighter is lying bleeding on the ground leaving you without a meatshield. BTW, color spray is also a top notch spell.

ShadowcatX wrote:
Also, some spells may be better for a witch than they are for a wizard simply because they have different spells knowable, not rating the spells as they apply to a witch because they've been rated as they apply to a wizard is a bit of a cop out IMO.

Yes, it is a cop out but I'm pretty happy overall with how Treantmonk rates the arcane spells. If you feel strongly about any arcane spell in particular that you believe may differ in rating between the witch and the wizard, then feel free to post and I will happily include it in the guide.


Deadmanwalking wrote:

Do you possess Halflings of Golarion? If not, be aware that they get an alternate "Halfling Jinx" racial trait, a lot of enhancements to it, and a Malicious Eye Feat that stacks Jinx effects on top of the Evil Eye Hex.

This combination certainly looks like it could get really nasty with some Feat investment, which Witches can afford to do, and might boost Halflings to a *** racial choice, at least situationally, despite their other disadvantages.

I don't have Halflings of Golarion. If you like, write up specifically what should be included under the Halfling heading in my guide and I will copy and paste it in.

Deadmanwalking wrote:
EDIT: Oh, and your Hex list lacks Evil Eye. A rather important oversight.

Good pick up about Evil Eye. I've updated the guide to include this hex.


j b 200 wrote:

Great guide. A few notes, I would add a section on patron spells. Maybe just a sentence or two each, mainly if it provides spells that aren't on the witch spell list and their general utility. Also you give a low grade (red I think) to Banish Seeming, but if I read it correctly it also cancels Polymorph effects ("return creature to it's natural form"). This is still situational, but it can really nerf that evil druid that's been killing all the crops, or cancel the Enlarged Fighter chopping you all to bits.

Otherwise great job.

There is a patron spells section though it is brief. If you wish to expand on it, write up what you would like added or changed and I will expand on this section. I see the guide as a community project where others can add their input.


Deadmanwalking wrote:

Okay, I've found a point of disagreement:

Threefold Aspect is awesome, from an optimization perspective. Becoming old is +4 Int as a day long buff. Yeah, that's effectively just 16,000 GP saved on a headband of Int. It costs a spell slot, but I'd say that's definitely worth it. The Wis bonus and Dex penalty balance each other pretty well, and the Str penalty couldn't matter less.

I didn't look at this spell closely enough. +4 Intelligence is awesome. You've just saved my witch 16,000gp and I've updated the spell to 4 stars.


LazarX wrote:
I find your guide rather standoffish and it seems to be writen on a person who's focused solely on DPS and combat with no particular regard to the cultural flavors of the witch itself. A major problem I have with both yours and Treantmonk's guides is the near single minded focus on PC use with no attention to the character as an NPC. NPC casters may cast different spells because their roles are going to be different. Many of these spells that you classify as red are very useful in setting mood and tone. NPCs need love too as game masters need to run these classes as well.

The primary focus of the guide is going to be about the combat. I agree that the NPC aspect has not really been addressed as there is plenty that could be said around this. I wish for the ratings to remain focused firstly on their combat potential but am open to ideas on how to expand the guide to add the elements you believe are missing. I have had a number of emails from people requesting google docs share access to edit which I have granted. I want the guide to have community input so if you wish to add to the guide, I am happy to receive your input or to allow you to edit to expand it.

LazarX wrote:
Three-fold Aspect? You pan it but it's the classic Maiden-Mother-Crone motif which can be very impressive if you're looking to impress the superstitious. not to mention the actual mechanical aspects of each of the three modes. And note the duration of this spell 24 hours.

Three-fold Aspect has been upgraded to four stars.

LazarX wrote:
Sleepwalk, again a classic witch type curse to lay on someone and a possibly good plot starter.

I still think Sleepwalk is a terrible spell from a combat perspective but I've added your comments to the spell's description.

LazarX wrote:
Screech. Making your enemies provoke AOO's weak. When you've got a meleer (or three) in the right place, that Screech may result in an instant crapload of damage if you time it right.

After rethinking this, I've upgraded from bad to ok.


Phneri wrote:

Few things you've missed in terms of spells/etc:

Moonstruck is amazingly good in the situations it's good in. Utterly shutting down enemy spellcasters/archers for example. Oh, those 8 archery feats you had? Great. Too bad you now have claws and were forced to drop your absurdly magical bow.

The problem I have with Moonstruck is that the save is will based which means those spellcasters are going to save against this alot of the time and they are your first choice target.

Phneri wrote:
Honestly think forced reincarnation should be blue. Primarily because reincarnate doesn't just change the physical form. It also denotes two permanent negative levels. As in creature has -2 to everything, reduced casting, etc, etc. Using an ability whose save DC levels with you to turn a CR 18 into a CR 16 in one go is pretty sick.

I hadn't considered the -2 drop in levels. Good pickup. It has now been upgraded to 4 stars.

Phneri wrote:
As others have said, 3fold aspect is disgustingly good. There's no reason not to have this running every day, along with mage armor and false life.

3fold aspect has been upgraded. It's alot better than I initially thought.


Mathwei ap Niall wrote:

Here's my contribution, my take on the Patrons. Though they only add a handful of spells they can really change the way a witch is played and shouldn't be underestimated.

Patron review

And I afgree Three-fold Aspect and moonstruck are surprisingly potent spells.

Thanks for writing that up. I have added your contribution to the guide with an acknowledgement to your forum name.

Lol - everyone has been telling me how good 3fold aspect is. It's been upgraded in the guide.


j b 200 wrote:

Great guide. A few notes, I would add a section on patron spells. Maybe just a sentence or two each, mainly if it provides spells that aren't on the witch spell list and their general utility. Also you give a low grade (red I think) to Banish Seeming, but if I read it correctly it also cancels Polymorph effects ("return creature to it's natural form"). This is still situational, but it can really nerf that evil druid that's been killing all the crops, or cancel the Enlarged Fighter chopping you all to bits.

Otherwise great job.

Just so you don't waste your time doing this yourself, Mathwei Ap Neill has written up an extensive list on Patron Spells which I have now added to the guide.

Dark Archive

Would be nice when you are done if you made it into a down loadable doc.

Liberty's Edge

c873788 wrote:


I don't have Halflings of Golarion. If you like, write up specifically what should be included under the Halfling heading in my guide and I will copy and paste it in.

I don't either. I borrowed it from a friend a while back (I'm playing a Halfling in the same RotRL game he's in), but had to return it.

Details on the Halfling Jinx Racial Trait and Feats are however available online here:

Halflings of Golarion Stuff

They're about half-way down the page. I'm not actually positive if they are good enough to raise the race to 3 stars, and it's your guide...so you should probably look at them yourself and decide.

c873788 wrote:
I didn't look at this spell closely enough. +4 Intelligence is awesome. You've just saved my witch 16,000gp and I've updated the spell to 4 stars.

Happy to be of assistance. :)


Dark_Mistress wrote:
Would be nice when you are done if you made it into a down loadable doc.

I would be happy to do this once I learn how. I'm a first time user of google docs.


I think you have actually underrated 2 key hexes.

Slumber - yes, you rated it 4 stars. However, it needs to stand out over every other standard hex. An unlimited uses save or be gimped effect whose save grows with your character level. It's your standard combat action (the one that doing anything else needs to be compared to) unless facing either dragons, oozes or undead.

Major hex, agony - is really the same beast. Except with an extra 30' of range, affects anything, and targets a fort save. Which makes it a prime choice as your first major hex. being Nauseated means target can't take actions other than single moves, which is to say, you lose...

Against any encounter that involves less than 3 opponents, these two hexes have a tendency to rule the battlefield for a which.

As such, up until ultimate magic gets here, these two are pretty much your optimal choices for your first regular and major hexes. And god help us if they add a reflex save disabling hex...

PS you have also massively underrated suffocation. Think of it as I reduce you to zero HP if you fail a save. Make 3 consecutive saves, and even if you make all your saves, your still subject to a slow spell for 3 rounds...Yes, a save or lose spell that makes you save 3 times, and is a strong inconvenience even if you make all the saves.


brothershadow wrote:
c873788 wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
c873788 wrote:
Stomphoof wrote:
Umbral Reaver wrote:
You might want to make the file public.
Indeed. I would love to check it out but I cannot at the moment.

Oh dear. I'm still a noob at Google docs.

Guide to Witches

Does this work now? I clicked on the 'Publish to the Web' option under the 'Share' drop down box. Hopefully that fixes it. Please let me know if you still can't get in.

I am not able to save it as a pdf. It seem more permissions need to be opened up.

To the right of the original document is a dropdown list under the word action. In that list is the word share. You can then click on share settings and change private to "anyone with this link". It will only be for that particular file so everything else still stays private.

I have changed the share settings as you have requested. Hope that helps.

Thanks to everyone for their feedback so far. I will try to respond to everyone who has made the effort to comment so far when I have time as well as edit the guide once I review closely what each of you have suggested.

Well done guide. Although my meat shields benefit highly from the spell "Screech." The Outflank feat they each have turns them into meat grinders once i continue screeching.

It is still making me ask for permission, but I don't know why. I sent out a request to get permission under my gmail name. If that works I will just repost it in a downloadable format if you dont mind.


wraithstrike wrote:
It is still making me ask for permission, but I don't know why. I sent out a request to get permission under my gmail name. If that works I will just repost it in a downloadable format if you dont mind.

Thanks wraithstrike. That would be most helpful.


Mathwei ap Niall wrote:

Here's my contribution, my take on the Patrons. Though they only add a handful of spells they can really change the way a witch is played and shouldn't be underestimated.

Patron review

And I afgree Three-fold Aspect and moonstruck are surprisingly potent spells.

May I ask why you rate the Shadow patron blue? I'm too new to Pathfinder to see why the Shadow Conjuration/Evocation spells are useful. A Witch already gets a lot of good conjurations, and the extra saving throw seems to me to gimp much other use.

Thanks!


c873788 wrote:

I have almost completed my pathfinder guide to witches in Google Docs. I just have 7th, 8th and 9th lvl spells to go to finish it which I hope to do shortly. Please feel free to offer comments / criticisms. I am open to editing it provided I agree with you. Here it is:

Guide to Witches

Thank you!

I'll ask why the Agony hex is not blue. True, the victim gets a Fortitude save every round. But it seems to me that a save-or-lose Fortitude option to compliment the Slumber hex save-or-lose Will option is priceless.

Also, my witch uses Ill Omen all the time. True, the Misfortune hex is similar. But Ill Omen can be quickened with a Lesser Metamagic Wand. And an improved familiar with hands can use a wand of Ill Omen (perhaps a delay in the initiative order is needed). Either way you can enjoy the Ill Omen benefit for your spell/hex saving throws the first round of combat).

Vomit Swarm does not seem to do much for my Witch. Too many foes have damage resistance (even the Wasp Swarm only averages 7 hp damage) and the Fortitude saves for poison, distraction of spellcasting, and distraction of nausea are sooooo low.

To me, Wandering Star Motes seems better than a red rating. It's situational, for a Witch without Heighten Spell who wants something harder to resist. Moreover, Witches and Bards are best friends, and if you are traveling with a Bard you can both cast this so two copies are bouncing around among the foes (great even if each foe can only suffer each copy once).

Cloak of Dreams also seems better than red. No touch attack is needed, merely proximity. Great icing on the cake for a summon-things and Fortune/Cackle Witch with a ring of invisibility.


c873788 wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
It is still making me ask for permission, but I don't know why. I sent out a request to get permission under my gmail name. If that works I will just repost it in a downloadable format if you dont mind.
Thanks wraithstrike. That would be most helpful.

I just got the notice. It will be reposted in a few minutes.


Repost of downloadable version of the Witch Guide


I am going to actually read the guide or some of it anyway.

I think the healing Hex is closer to green than blue, but that also depends on what other classes are in the party. I am assuming the witch is taking the sorcerer's or wizard's spot. With the cleric there this hex is not as valuable.

The Agony Hex can be Green if the Witch really pimps the intelligence modifier and takes ability focus, but other than that the saves every round bring the value down especially since higher level monsters start to get really high save modifiers especially against fort and will based affects.

As for the spells I don't give cure light wounds a blue or 4 stars. I give it a green and only because low levels characters die if the wind blows too hard.

As someone else already mentioned fluff does not get stars. All stars should be based on whether or not the ability help the party or at least the witch.

I actually like wandering star motes, but I can't recall what it does off-hand. I bring this up because not too many spell immediately catch my eye. Hopefully another poster covers this one and saves me some time.


Great guide! Needs a bit work here and there but otherwise it's a VERY solid start.

Many issues have already been adressed by the others, but one thing is missing: I'm not sure I agree with your rating for the Fortune Hex.
Don't get me wrong, it's an great hex, but I personally would rate it lower than misfortune. 3 stars seems appropriate.
Fortune has 2 problems:

1. Can only be used once per day per person. If the target walks out of cackle-range or your witch is somehow prevented from cackling, the benefit lasts only for 1-3 rounds of a whole day. The same is true for misfortune but an enemy will only last a couple of rounds anyway.

2. Unlike Misfortne, Fortune allows for only ONE reroll per round and I think you should really point that out in your description. If you save the use for a potentially important save, you can't boost your attack roll with it. And the need fo the save might never come, depending on the actions of the enemy. So Fortune can actually have "dead" rounds. Yes, Misfortune can have unused rounds, too, but it's far more likely to have ANY efect.


Any plan on doing base familiars and rating them?


Blave wrote:

Many issues have already been adressed by the others, but one thing is missing: I'm not sure I agree with your rating for the Fortune Hex.

Don't get me wrong, it's an great hex, but I personally would rate it lower than misfortune. 3 stars seems appropriate.

In my mind it might be 3 stars, just by how averages work.

Definitely 4 stars in the special situation if the Witch or someone else in the party summons monsters. Then you have plenty of allies to use it on each day.

Probably 2 stars otherwise, because of the restrictions Blave mentions.

But Blave's point stands. It isn't really 3 stars for any Witch--it's probably worse, but situationally better.


davidvs wrote:


Vomit Swarm does not seem to do much for my Witch. Too many foes have damage resistance (even the Wasp Swarm only averages 7 hp damage) and the Fortitude saves for poison, distraction of spellcasting, and distraction of nausea are sooooo low.

Except at really low levels swarms aren't for damage. They're to hit an enemy with 2-3 saves every round plus some minor damage.

The save DCs are low because a multi-round AOE nausea effect that you can have by level 3 is disgustingly good.

Dark Archive

davidvs wrote:
Mathwei ap Niall wrote:

Here's my contribution, my take on the Patrons. Though they only add a handful of spells they can really change the way a witch is played and shouldn't be underestimated.

Patron review

And I afgree Three-fold Aspect and moonstruck are surprisingly potent spells.

May I ask why you rate the Shadow patron blue? I'm too new to Pathfinder to see why the Shadow Conjuration/Evocation spells are useful. A Witch already gets a lot of good conjurations, and the extra saving throw seems to me to gimp much other use.

Thanks!

The perk of the shadow conjuration spells is simple flexibility. These spells let you mimic ANY evocation or conjuration spell (including ones that aren't on your spell list) and don't require you to pick what that spell is until you cast it.


Mathwei ap Niall wrote:
The perk of the shadow conjuration spells is simple flexibility. These spells let you mimic ANY evocation or conjuration spell (including ones that aren't on your spell list) and don't require you to pick what that spell is until you cast it.

Correction: You can mimic any evocation or conjuration spell on the wizard spell list.

Another bonus is the casting time: 1 Standard action, no matter which spell you mimic. Faster than a normal Summon Monster spell (allowing you to cackle in the same round).

Dark Archive

Re-evaluating your take on the Hexes I think you have underrated a few of them.

Cauldron ** This choice is ok if you want to spend your downtime creating potions for the party. Remember to pick up Craft(Alchemy) as well.
You do realize this is Scribe Scroll for witches right? ANY and EVERY potion or alchemical item available in the game the witch can brew at first level and have sitting in a bag waiting for when it's needed. Admittedly it's a little more expensive and a bit less flexible then Scribe scroll but far friendly for party support and amazing action economy. (quaff a potion & cast a spell per round, and everyone else in the party can do it too)
Take the hedge wizard trait and look, you have a profit machine on top of it too.

Coven * This is not a great choice as the opportunity for you to use this will rarely come up if ever. Of course, if you have other witches in your party then this choice becomes a reasonable choice. While this may not be very useful for PC Witches, it can be very handy for NPC witches.

This is what Leadership is for, add this feat and this becomes nearly game breakingly good.
animate dead, baleful polymorph, blight, bestow curse, clairaudience, clairvoyance,charm monster, commune, control weather, dream, forcecage, mind blank, mirage arcana, reincarnate, speak with dead, veil, vision

All pretty much at will with DC's in the mid 20's and up with and also add a +2 to caster level on any spell or hex you ever decide to cast.
I've always considered this as the most powerful Hex out there if you can handle waiting till 6th level to get it.

Blight * Not terribly useful except for a games master who wanted to use an NPC witch with this ability for a background story / adventure plot.
Remember it's Con bleed effect requiring a will save to remove.
On average it's initial damage is the enemies HD in hp damage, and a -1 to their fort save. It's an auto-kill for any plant monster.
It's really a perfect assassins' power and much safer then poison.
I wouldn't rate it really high but it's got enough in and out of combat perks to be useful and earn at least 2 stars, 3 in an urban campaign.

Healing **** By 5th level you can cast Cure Moderate Wounds to everyone in your party plus all the cohorts, animal companions and familiars as well plus any NPC's you encounter. A typical party of say 5 characters, a familiar and an animal companion would mean 7 uses of a 2nd level spell slot a day for one hex if everyone got injured. Very good value.

I'm the exact opposite on this hex and find it barely useful.
Yes it is the equiv of cure mod at 5th level but it's one use per day. this would only find use for me in a 15minute adventuring day kind of campaign. It's great for healing large numbers of damaged targets but for party usage in combat I'd rather have handed everyone a potion of cure mod (or 3!) from my cauldron hex and saved my action for buffing or debuffing. Out of combat is even worse since then it's better to use a wand of CL. I'd give this hex 2 stars at most and totally ignore it if there was another healing class available.

Waxen Image (Major) ** Powerful hex that gives you some control over the enemy but it takes too long to take effect.

Totally disagree here, this is one of the most powerful of the hexes granting a sick amount of control over your opponent. It's a RANGED trip, disarm, or stunning blow, that targets an opponents will save instead of their CMD that's usable on any opponent regardless of type. Against DR heavy creatures it's a massive damage boost (creatures own attacks will pierce DR of creatures equal to their type), or you can just make the damn thing provoke an AOO from EVERYONE in your party by going for a walk and then walk off a cliff or into a pit trip.
All this for the cost of a single full round action.
Wow. Just WOW.

Grand Lodge

wraithstrike wrote:

I am going to actually read the guide or some of it anyway.

I think the healing Hex is closer to green than blue, but that also depends on what other classes are in the party. I am assuming the witch is taking the sorcerer's or wizard's spot. With the cleric there this hex is not as valuable.

It actually does have a value. It means that the cleric can actually mix up doing other things besides functioning as a healbot. There is a value in spreading healing functions beyond just one person or not compartmentalising roles totally. It gives you redundancy if a character is taken out.

Dark Archive

LazarX wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:

I am going to actually read the guide or some of it anyway.

I think the healing Hex is closer to green than blue, but that also depends on what other classes are in the party. I am assuming the witch is taking the sorcerer's or wizard's spot. With the cleric there this hex is not as valuable.

It actually does have a value. It means that the cleric can actually mix up doing other things besides functioning as a healbot. There is a value in spreading healing functions beyond just one person or not compartmentalising roles totally. It gives you redundancy if a character is taken out.

It has value for the cleric not for the witch. If it was merely about spreading the healing around anyone with healing wand and the ability to use it could do the same thing. Taking this hex costs the witch a finite resource to do less effective party healing then a 750gp wand of cure light. I still rate this hex as bad unless you're trying to keep an army of hirelings going.

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