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

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game


Pathfinder Society


Starfinder


Starfinder Society

Mystic Theurge Advancement Question


Rules Questions

Liberty's Edge

If one were to enter the Mystic Theurge PrC from Sorcerer/Oracle, advancing in level as a MT would provide neither bloodline powers nor curse/mystery benefits, would it?

The only advancement benefits are spells known and spells per day.

If I understand correctly, my idea for a MT who avoided "MADness" is not so good. I had thought, "Cool! I can combine Oracle with Sorcerer, and have both arcane and divine spells based on CHA. Then I can take levels in MT.". But losing the non-spell benefits of those 2 classes hurts too much.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

The real problem of Sorc/Orac MT is that your spellcasting is so far behind an equivalent full-prog caster that it's not really worth it.

Liberty's Edge

As a Mystic Theurge it's usually best not to focus on offensive abilities as much as defensive and tactical abilities. This means that MAD isn't that much of an issue because you can have a casting stat of 14 and (with Craft Wondrous) always keep that stat where it needs to be as you get spell levels, even without investing in those stats.

Combining Cleric or Druid with Wizard or Witch means you can take 7 levels of one, 3 of the other and 10 of MT and get to 9th level spells with one and 7th level with the other.

It's a bit MAD, but not impossible. You can be at an even 10 in everything with an 18 in one casting stat and a 16 in the other (assuming human/half-elf/half-orc and 20 point buy). The key is that you need to be capable of casting the spell, not being able to cast it well necessarily. You need to pick spells that boost allies and change terrain to avoid attacking saves or SR.

The main problem with mystic theurge is being useful early. It's very hard to do. If you did cleric for the divine side you could be somewhat useful with channels for a few levels, or you could be druid and use your animal companion (though it starts losing effectiveness after you start the multi-class). About level 12-ish (3/3/6) is where you start to see more usefulness as you now have a butt-ton of level 5 and lower spells.

If you have a cool DM you might even be able to take a feat or two to boost the animal companion to keep it useful.

The key is to pick spells that can be used in creative and interesting fashions. One-trick ponies concepts and mystic theurge do NOT mix. Prepare things like Stone Shape and Fly, not Fireball and Flamestrike. You want to make sure that you always have a spell that, in some strange way, can do the job.

Don't even bother thinking about favored class bonuses. You're just not going to get more than 10 instances of those, and that's if you're a half-elf.

Personally, I'd make such a character the party switch-hitter. Give them 14 int and 14 wis, then invest the rest in physical stats. Dump cha if needed. You won't need more int or wisdom until 9th level, by which time you should have the funds for a headband. Keep investing in physical stats and use polymorph effects for when you find yourself having to fight. Think about being a Cleric of Sarenrae and using a scimitar with Dervish Dance so you can keep Str at 10 (you need dex for AC since your arcane side prevents armor use, and the free hand that Dervish requires can be used for casting).


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

StabbittyDoom pretty much nailed it.

The mystic theurge's main strength is access to two different spell lists. A mystic theurge doesn't shine by being the best caster in one particular circumstance; a mystic theurge shines by being the caster for any circumstance. Classes that have limitations on learning spells (spontaneous casters and to a lesser extent witches) or have many class features outside of spells that are based on class level (although the impact of this can be lessened with some feats) tend not to be good choices for a mystic theurge. However, as with anything there are some exceptions: a cleric/bard can work fairly well, for instance.

Generally, you need to decide which of your two classes is "primary" before you even start creating the character. Take the Magical Knack trait in your "primary" class so you only lose 1-2 CL there instead of 3-4. Start with your "primary" class until you gain 2nd-level spells before switching to your "secondary" class, then switch to mystic theurge as soon as you qualify. After ten levels of mystic theurge (if your campaign lasts that long), switch back to your "primary" class or another prestige class that grants full spellcasting (loremaster is usually a decent choice). Item creation feats (especially Scribe Scroll, Craft Wondrous Item, and Craft Wand) are pretty much must-haves; scrolls and wands let you have a spell available for any situation, while wondrous items have the widest variety in applicability.


Theconiel wrote:

If one were to enter the Mystic Theurge PrC from Sorcerer/Oracle, advancing in level as a MT would provide neither bloodline powers nor curse/mystery benefits, would it?

The only advancement benefits are spells known and spells per day.

If I understand correctly, my idea for a MT who avoided "MADness" is not so good. I had thought, "Cool! I can combine Oracle with Sorcerer, and have both arcane and divine spells based on CHA. Then I can take levels in MT.". But losing the non-spell benefits of those 2 classes hurts too much.

Actually your oracle's curse still advances, albeit not at quickly as if you were pure oracle (1 level advancement for every 2 non-oracle classes). This is independent from the MT's progression and built directly into the oracle curse's design.

Many good suggestions have already been made. I do not entirely agree with the notion to only go for prepared casters. If you have one spontaneously casting class, you got some extra benefit which you won't have with only prepared classes.
I would go with the mixture of spontaneously and prepared casting class. The prepared casting class could be used for versatility and problem solving, the spontaneously casting one for spamming spells, e.g. offensive spells.

Using the above approach and trying to avoid MAD as you seemed to, you have the following options:
Casting attribute - Classes
WIS - Sorcerer (empyreal), cleric
WIS - Sorcerer (empyreal), druid
WIS - Sorcerer (empyreal), ranger*
WIS - Sorcerer (empyreal), paladin*
* unlikely choices

Also, if you still want some of the benefits of the base classes, using eldritch heritage you could at least get some of their bloodline powers.

Liberty's Edge

I play only PFS, which means I am limited to 12 levels. Item creation is also irrelevant.

I might create a character with this concept (unlikely since I already have 5 active characters and at least 1 other idea) but only if I can think of a reasonable story. I do not generally like play a character without some background.

So, If I did create a character who started as an oracle (4), then changed to sorcerer (4), then to MT (4), when the character reached 12 levels, he would have:
Oracle spells: as 8th level
Oracle curse: as 8th level
Sorcerer spells: as 8th level
Sorcerer bloodline powers: as 4th level

The Cleric/Sorcerer (empyreal)/Mystic Theurge sounds as if it might be a good character. Having a specific deity would also make it easier to write a good story.

Thanks for the input, everyone!


Just to nit-pick, paladins are cha-based casters now, so you don't want empyreal for them.


stringburka wrote:
Just to nit-pick, paladins are cha-based casters now, so you don't want empyreal for them.

Argh, you are right. I was thinking of having the line

CHA - paladin, sorcerer (any but sage or empyreal)
in there, since it's the only combo I know where you have a CHA-based prepared caster. Good catch! :-)


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Sangalor wrote:
I would go with the mixture of spontaneously and prepared casting class. The prepared casting class could be used for versatility and problem solving, the spontaneously casting one for spamming spells, e.g. offensive spells.

The problem with a mystic theurge based on a spontaneous caster casting a bunch of offensive spells, especially in Pathfinder Society (which, IIRC, doesn't allow Magical Knack, either), is the loss in caster level makes even the combat spells you have access to hardly worth casting. You can cast web an extra couple of times per day; the single-classed conjurer is dropping stinking cloud and black tentacles on opponents. Forget about spamming damaging spells, they're all based on caster level; wands are cheap for the same effect.

The mystic theurge, even without the restrictions of Pathfinder Society, only starts coming into its own around 10th character level (even later with spontaneous casters); 5th-9th character levels, when single-classed casters start hitting their stride, are when the mystic theurge is at it's weakest. With the restrictions of Pathfinder Society, a mystic theurge probably will only start feeling "worth it" right before retirement.

In Pathfinder Society play, you're better off with a single-classed witch than a mystic theurge.


Dragonchess Player wrote:
Sangalor wrote:
I would go with the mixture of spontaneously and prepared casting class. The prepared casting class could be used for versatility and problem solving, the spontaneously casting one for spamming spells, e.g. offensive spells.

The problem with a mystic theurge based on a spontaneous caster casting a bunch of offensive spells, especially in Pathfinder Society (which, IIRC, doesn't allow Magical Knack, either), is the loss in caster level makes even the combat spells you have access to hardly worth casting. You can cast web an extra couple of times per day; the single-classed conjurer is dropping stinking cloud and black tentacles on opponents. Forget about spamming damaging spells, they're all based on caster level; wands are cheap for the same effect.

The mystic theurge, even without the restrictions of Pathfinder Society, only starts coming into its own around 10th character level (even later with spontaneous casters); 5th-9th character levels, when single-classed casters start hitting their stride, are when the mystic theurge is at it's weakest. With the restrictions of Pathfinder Society, a mystic theurge probably will only start feeling "worth it" right before retirement.

In Pathfinder Society play, you're better off with a single-classed witch than a mystic theurge.

I am not familiar with the Pathfinder Society play rules, but what you say really makes it appear like MT is not very well suited for it. So your suggestion of witch seems good, though I would add bard to it :-)

Still, I believe the CL and the spell levels are not so much of a problem. Shield, web (you mentioned it), grease, glitterdust ... there are many spells which are still worth taking, especially if you want to preserve some flexibility regarding what you cast when.

Liberty's Edge

As one poster correctly pointed out, Magical Knack is not allowed in PFS.

I don't think the MT would improve in channeling energy either. When I play a cleric, the cleric tends to rely heavily on channeling, both for healing comrades and for harming undead. That would be yet another reason to avoid MT in society play, at least for me. Channeling for 2d6 at 12th level would be pointless.

I think I can close the book on this idea. Maybe in a future campaign without the level restriction I'll revisit the thought.


Theconiel wrote:

As one poster correctly pointed out, Magical Knack is not allowed in PFS.

I don't think the MT would improve in channeling energy either.

I don't think it does, either. Frankly, apart from the Ultimate Magus and Arcane Hierophant, double-casting PrCs in 3.5 were almost never worth it (and those two were situational). In Pathfinder, as most base classes were boosted, it seems that the MT is even less useful than it was in 3.5.

BTW, armor need not be a problem for the MT if they spend 2 feats on arcane armor training/mastery; that will be enough to negate the ASF chance of mithral breastplate and a light mithral/darkwood shield (light so you can carry a symbol/component/etc in that hand) as long as you are willing to spend a swift action.

Lantern Lodge

Are we sure magical knack isn't allowed in PFS? I can't see it banned in Additional Resources...

Paizo / Messageboards / Paizo / Pathfinder® / Pathfinder RPG / Rules Questions / Mystic Theurge Advancement Question All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.

©2002-2017 Paizo Inc.® | Privacy Policy | Contact Us
Need help? Email customer.service@paizo.com or call 425-250-0800 during our business hours, Monday through Friday, 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM Pacific time.

Paizo Inc., Paizo, the Paizo golem logo, Pathfinder, the Pathfinder logo, Pathfinder Society, Starfinder, the Starfinder logo, GameMastery, and Planet Stories are registered trademarks of Paizo Inc. The Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, Pathfinder Player Companion, Pathfinder Modules, Pathfinder Tales, Pathfinder Battles, Pathfinder Legends, Pathfinder Online, Starfinder Adventure Path, PaizoCon, RPG Superstar, The Golem's Got It, Titanic Games, the Titanic logo, and the Planet Stories planet logo are trademarks of Paizo Inc. Dungeons & Dragons, Dragon, Dungeon, and Polyhedron are registered trademarks of Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and have been used by Paizo Inc. under license. Most product names are trademarks owned or used under license by the companies that publish those products; use of such names without mention of trademark status should not be construed as a challenge to such status.