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Kitsune, change shape and special Kitsune feats


Pathfinder RPG General Discussion

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

So i finally got a look at Dragon empires Primer, what is immediately raising some questions.

Kitsune receive a +10 bonus in human form on disguise and eventually also in fox form. Does that mean if you change shape that functions like beastshape just anyone who can beat your disguise check can see youre a Kitsune for real?

Now with -2 STR Kitsune are already in a special place for medium races.
While the Kitsune magic is fine, i wonder about the special Kitsune feats.
Swift shapechange is surely fine for roleplaying actions, no doubt.
Fox form the same.
Only wait, bite only 1d3? Then a tiny animal with all the restictions?
Surely nice for stealth, but else?

Then the other feat, vulpine pounce, charging with a Character that has -2 on STR? Pounce is surely nice though and the full attacka also.
But Kitsune cry for finesse builds, is the bite finessable?

I´m a bit confused on how to use that stuff best somehow, or maybe how to use that at all.


Bite is a natural attack so it's finessable.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Hayato Ken wrote:

So i finally got a look at Dragon empires Primer, what is immediately raising some questions.

Kitsune receive a +10 bonus in human form on disguise and eventually also in fox form. Does that mean if you change shape that functions like beastshape just anyone who can beat your disguise check can see youre a Kitsune for real?

Now with -2 STR Kitsune are already in a special place for medium races.
While the Kitsune magic is fine, i wonder about the special Kitsune feats.
Swift shapechange is surely fine for roleplaying actions, no doubt.
Fox form the same.
Only wait, bite only 1d3? Then a tiny animal with all the restictions?
Surely nice for stealth, but else?

Then the other feat, vulpine pounce, charging with a Character that has -2 on STR? Pounce is surely nice though and the full attacka also.
But Kitsune cry for finesse builds, is the bite finessable?

I´m a bit confused on how to use that stuff best somehow, or maybe how to use that at all.

Personally, I think kitsunes work best as ninjas. Their stats and abilities are great for it. Fox form is great for stealth purposes, plus you get scent. Good luck finding an invisible tiny sized ninja...

Vulpine Pounce will be useful for getting a full round attack of sneak attacks in at the start of combat. Plus, by then a ninja should have invisible blade, so you can do Invisible pouncing sneak attacks.

I'm not sure how useful the bite will be, but I guess an additional chance at getting a sneak attack is always good.

Non stealth builds for Kitsunes might work well, but the -2 str does hurt and the fox form isn't as useful. Kitsunes could make good Cha spellcasters, but in that case wouldn't want any of the kitsune feats and the bite attack is worthless.

As for how the +10 to disguise works, I think if someone beats the disguise check he just notices that something is weird. Like, the kitsune isn't acting like a human should be acting. This is because it is a polymorph effect and not an illusion effect.

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I guess Kitsune make good bards too, especially the Lotus Geisha archetype seems a good choice, making use of the enchantment bonus.

You get +1 from Kitsune magic and +2 on fascinate, frightening tune,
and suggestion enrapturing performances since those are all enchantment effects.

The only questions is if spell focus and greater spell focus that you get from the archetype would also apply? This would mean another +2 on the DC for an effective +5 for the irresistible enchanter.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Hayato Ken wrote:

I guess Kitsune make good bards too, especially the Lotus Geisha archetype seems a good choice, making use of the enchantment bonus.

You get +1 from Kitsune magic and +2 on fascinate, frightening tune,
and suggestion enrapturing performances since those are all enchantment effects.

The only questions is if spell focus and greater spell focus that you get from the archetype would also apply? This would mean another +2 on the DC for an effective +5 for the irresistible enchanter.

Hmmm, you're right, a Kitsune would make a very good bard. And yea, The Kitsune racial bonus should stack with any non racial bonus.

Now I know what race I will use if I ever make a bard, haha.

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Yes, this could become a new bard type, the enchanter bard.
It fits the Kitsune theme very well, a fox spirit charming and enchanting all foes and others^^

There are only two major flaws so far:
-can´t use a whip for controlling build
-too many things are immune to enchantments and mind affecting effects

On the other side:
Get a varisian enchantment tattoo, the near useless daze, but also another +1 on enchantment DC´s.
Going all the way with metamagic feats, one could use spell perfection to double all that boni, making it +9 on the DC.

But how to overcome immunities to mind affecting abilities?


I don't have Dragon Empires Primer, so I can't comment specifically about the Kitsune mechanics, but in folklore kitsune have always been spellcasters and usually considered the most powerful kind. They were never warriors, at least not in folklore. So as you describing the kitsune above - it seems to bit their folklore niche. Trying to make martial characters of them seem a definite challenge - as if they were designed to match folklore expectations of not being fighters. Ninja and Bards look like would work too.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Hayato Ken wrote:

So i finally got a look at Dragon empires Primer, what is immediately raising some questions.

Kitsune receive a +10 bonus in human form on disguise and eventually also in fox form. Does that mean if you change shape that functions like beastshape just anyone who can beat your disguise check can see youre a Kitsune for real?

It means basically they get a +10 on disguise checks if they are looking to imitate a specific person.

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
LazarX wrote:
Hayato Ken wrote:

So i finally got a look at Dragon empires Primer, what is immediately raising some questions.

Kitsune receive a +10 bonus in human form on disguise and eventually also in fox form. Does that mean if you change shape that functions like beastshape just anyone who can beat your disguise check can see youre a Kitsune for real?

It means basically they get a +10 on disguise checks if they are looking to imitate a specific person.

I thought you can only have one appearance and not disguise yourself as someone when shaping into human form?


Pathfinder Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Hayato Ken wrote:
LazarX wrote:
Hayato Ken wrote:

So i finally got a look at Dragon empires Primer, what is immediately raising some questions.

Kitsune receive a +10 bonus in human form on disguise and eventually also in fox form. Does that mean if you change shape that functions like beastshape just anyone who can beat your disguise check can see youre a Kitsune for real?

It means basically they get a +10 on disguise checks if they are looking to imitate a specific person.
I thought you can only have one appearance and not disguise yourself as someone when shaping into human form?

The Disguise check is usually made to act inconspicuously enough so that you aren't discovered. Someone who isn't familiar with the kitsune in one form but is in the other, for example, would have to make a Disguise check in order to notice the similarities (i.e. brilliantly colored eyes, etc.) or pick out "something's not right" details (similar clothing, out of breath, not acting appropriately, etc.) and ultimately smoke the kitsune out. It's the same sort of rule that normally applies to Polymorph effects.

It's not a written rule, but since the kitsune has a specific human form, I'd go ahead and say that an individual doesn't need to make a Disguise check to identify the kitsune in either form if they're familiar with them in both forms, such as a close friend or a lover. There used to be spells and abilities that worked like that, but for the life of me I couldn't tell you what they were.

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Just so a check question on the vulpine pounce:

Let´s say a ninja with invisible blade or a scout rogue took spring attack, can she then move in, pounce sneak attack and move out again every round? Spring attack says "As a full-round action, you can move up to your speed and make a single melee attack", so i guess the answer is no. Shot on the run is the same.
For a ninja or a rogue that doesn´t sound so good, you charge in and do a lot of damage, but then are in a vulnerable position. Except if you have invisible blade because youre essentially invisible and i don´t know better protection than a 50% miss chance.

So now the questions is how to put this feat and charge to a good use?

Taldor

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Hayato Ken wrote:

Yes, this could become a new bard type, the enchanter bard.

It fits the Kitsune theme very well, a fox spirit charming and enchanting all foes and others^^

There are only two major flaws so far:
-can´t use a whip for controlling build
-too many things are immune to enchantments and mind affecting effects

On the other side:
Get a varisian enchantment tattoo, the near useless daze, but also another +1 on enchantment DC´s.
Going all the way with metamagic feats, one could use spell perfection to double all that boni, making it +9 on the DC.

But how to overcome immunities to mind affecting abilities?

How are you getting +9? Varisian tattoo only gives a +1 to the caster level, not the DC. Spell focus/greater focus would be +2, doubled to +4, then +1 for Kitsune Magic racial trait for a total of +5, or have I missed something?


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

Because a race has a -2 to strength, you think they should never charge?

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Because its a bard with the lotus geisha archetype.

A lotus geisha adds a +2 bonus to the DC of Will saves
made to resist the effects of her fascinate, frightening tune,
and suggestion enrapturing performances.

This plus the +1 from kitsune magic and +2 from spell foci is +5.
After that Varisian tattoo and spell perfection would come in.

Actually im not quite sure how that works, thats why im discussing it.

And i don´t have much experience with charging. Only im would probably not put points into STR, so im not sure its a good idea.
But then ninjas with scout archetype could make something out of it.
Other good applications i dont know.


I am actually playing a fire wizard/monk kitsune in a Jade Regent campaign. We are only 2nd level right now but I am thinking that I may take a few of the feats from Dragon Empires. Would he qualify for natural spell?

Taldor

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Hayato Ken wrote:

Because its a bard with the lotus geisha archetype.

A lotus geisha adds a +2 bonus to the DC of Will saves
made to resist the effects of her fascinate, frightening tune,
and suggestion enrapturing performances.

Ok, fair enough, I wasn't familiar with lotus geisha, that brings us to +7. I'll reiterate however that Varisian Tattoo does not give a bonus to Save DC, only to caster level.

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Shalafi that sounds interesting too. You could also use elemental fist and some style feat for the monk. I think the Janni were something with fire.

Talon Stormwarden, doesn´t the imporved caster level help somehow?

I doubled the bonus from lotus geisha archetype too because of this sentence: "if you have other feats which allow you to apply a set numerical bonus to any aspect of this spell (such as Spell Focus, Spell Penetration, Weapon Focus [ray], and so on), double the bonus granted by that feat when applied to this spell."
Well its not really a feat, but its a numerical bonus and it says "so on".

Shadow Lodge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

Hayato Ken wrote:

Because its a bard with the lotus geisha archetype.

A lotus geisha adds a +2 bonus to the DC of Will saves
made to resist the effects of her fascinate, frightening tune,
and suggestion enrapturing performances.

This plus the +1 from kitsune magic and +2 from spell foci is +5.
After that Varisian tattoo and spell perfection would come in.

Actually im not quite sure how that works, thats why im discussing it.

Unfortunately, Kitsune Magic and Spell Focus/Greater Spell Focus only apply to spells, not bardic performances or the lotus geisha's enrapturing performances.

You do get some very good enchantment spells as a bard, though, so the build is still quite good.

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Are you sure?
Because under those abilities stands:
-"Fascinate is an enchantment (compulsion), mind-affecting ability."
-"Suggestion is an enchantment (compulsion), mind-affecting, language-dependent ability and relies on audible components."

Dirge of Doom and Frightening Tune don´t exactly state the same, but both get a save too.

Then: "At 2nd level, a lotus geisha
gains the ability to execute an enrapturing performance in
addition to her bardic performance ability."

The question somehow seems to be whats all enchantment, compulsion, mind-affecting.

Taldor

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Hayato Ken wrote:

Are you sure?

Because under those abilities stands:
-"Fascinate is an enchantment (compulsion), mind-affecting ability."
-"Suggestion is an enchantment (compulsion), mind-affecting, language-dependent ability and relies on audible components."

Dirge of Doom and Frightening Tune don´t exactly state the same, but both get a save too.

Then: "At 2nd level, a lotus geisha
gains the ability to execute an enrapturing performance in
addition to her bardic performance ability."

The question somehow seems to be whats all enchantment, compulsion, mind-affecting.

Doesn't matter how SIMILAR they are to spells, however, they're not spells. As such spell focus and greater spell focus would not apply.

Similarly, Spell Perfection only applies to actual spells, not spell like abilities or supernatural abilities or anything that's not a spell.

Then there's the numerical bonus doubling.

PRD wrote:
In addition, if you have other feats which allow you to apply a set numerical bonus to any aspect of this spell (such as Spell Focus, Spell Penetration, Weapon Focus [ray], and so on), double the bonus granted by that feat when applied to this spell.

The text inside the parentheses merely provides examples of feats that Spell Perfection boosts. But there's no doubt that only feats qualify.

Shadow Lodge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

Hayato Ken wrote:

Are you sure?

Because under those abilities stands:
-"Fascinate is an enchantment (compulsion), mind-affecting ability."
-"Suggestion is an enchantment (compulsion), mind-affecting, language-dependent ability and relies on audible components."

Dirge of Doom and Frightening Tune don´t exactly state the same, but both get a save too.

Then: "At 2nd level, a lotus geisha
gains the ability to execute an enrapturing performance in
addition to her bardic performance ability."

The question somehow seems to be whats all enchantment, compulsion, mind-affecting.

Yep, pretty sure.

Fascinate and suggestion are enchantment effects, but they aren't spells.

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Well then its still +3 on all enchantment spells and +2 on the enrapturing performance stuff, whats pretty good.
Spell perfection can bring one enchantment spell to +5 then.

Whats the best spell for that on the bards list?
Charm or dominate(not sure if they get this)?


LazarX wrote:
Hayato Ken wrote:

So i finally got a look at Dragon empires Primer, what is immediately raising some questions.

Kitsune receive a +10 bonus in human form on disguise and eventually also in fox form. Does that mean if you change shape that functions like beastshape just anyone who can beat your disguise check can see youre a Kitsune for real?

It means basically they get a +10 on disguise checks if they are looking to imitate a specific person.

What about the -10 penalty to disguise yourself as a different race, if you look at the original entry while Kitusne have 2 forms, only the humanoid fox counts as the "true" form, which means looking human counts as a different race, imposing a -10 penalty which is counteracted by the +10 from the shapeshifting ability, can you give me a rules grounded reason why the kitsune does not suffer from the -10 for disguising itself as a different race?

Taldor

What about the -10 penalty to disguise yourself as a different race, if you look at the original entry while Kitusne have 2 forms, only the humanoid fox counts as the "true" form, which means looking human counts as a different race, imposing a -10 penalty which is counteracted by the +10 from the shapeshifting ability, can you give me a rules grounded reason why the kitsune does not suffer from the -10 for disguising itself as a different race?

The Kitsune's (Supernatural Ability) "Change Shape" is defined as mirroring the "Alter Self" spell, a transmutational (rather than illusionary) spell requiring a Standard Action.

It provides a +10 Disguise bonus for the Kitsune to appear as it's single, same gender "human" form, or: with the 'Realistic Likeness' feat, +10 with any human form previously encountered.

As a Supernatural Ability requiring concious effort and a Standard Action to achieve, it is an optional but not "natural" or "default form for the Kitsune, and doesn't act like the "Perfect Copy" supernatural ability of the Doppleganger!

Wheras not implicitly stated, some DMs might disregard the cumulative -2 penalty for the Kitsume's single pre-defined "human" form being of a different race or age category (it must be of the same gender).

However, if employing the "Realistic Likeness" feat (which doesn't specify a same gender form) my inclination would be to employ this cumulative -2 penalty for different "step" away from the Kitsune in terms of race, gender and age category.

We should also remember the familiarity bonus' to viewer's opposed Perception checks vs. the Kitsune's Disguise total...ranging from "Familiar" at +4 to "Intimate" at +10...Though casual, unsuspicious viwers would generally be assumed to passively "take 10" on their Perception rolls.

Now: can our supernaturally bolsterd Kitsune "take 10/20" on his or her Disguise total ?!

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Hayato Ken wrote:

So i finally got a look at Dragon empires Primer, what is immediately raising some questions.

Kitsune receive a +10 bonus in human form on disguise and eventually also in fox form. Does that mean if you change shape that functions like beastshape just anyone who can beat your disguise check can see youre a Kitsune for real?

Now with -2 STR Kitsune are already in a special place for medium races.
While the Kitsune magic is fine, i wonder about the special Kitsune feats.
Swift shapechange is surely fine for roleplaying actions, no doubt.
Fox form the same.
Only wait, bite only 1d3? Then a tiny animal with all the restictions?
Surely nice for stealth, but else?

Then the other feat, vulpine pounce, charging with a Character that has -2 on STR? Pounce is surely nice though and the full attacka also.
But Kitsune cry for finesse builds, is the bite finessable?

I´m a bit confused on how to use that stuff best somehow, or maybe how to use that at all.

Yes, natural weapons ARE finessable. And the answer to your first question, is that if they beat your disguise check, they can tell that you're not a normal Human or Fox. If they've heard of Kitsune,(lke many Tian Xians of the right countries), they have you made.

That's assuming of course you give them a reason to make that check.


Well, JonB already covered most of what I would want to say about Realistic likeness and Shape Change. As a note, with swift shapechanger, you can thus use Alter Self as a Swift action, making it possible to gain any cover (such as rounding a corner) and lose pursuers instantly. That is fairly powerful as far as stealth goes.

Remember the first rule to being a master ninja: Don't look like a ninja. It is far easier to hide in plain sight as the gardener than bother with all that sneaking business. No one suspects the hired help until after the crime has been discovered, and you can be long gone by then.

As for vulpine pounce: I think that a Rogue with the scout archetype would be best able to take advantage of this feat. Think about it: the ability to gain a TWF full attack (+1 bite) worth of sneak attack damage every time you make a charge. Do you even own that many d6's to throw at once?That is the kind of thing that makes the GM switch to all oozes and swarms mid campaign. As a side note: I am...fairly...sure that ninjas are considered one very big archetype for rogue. If you are allowed to use another that trades out the things you still have (namely uncanny dodge and improved uncanny dodge), you could also take the scout archetype.

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