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Batter McShieldbash 2! Bash Harder With a Vengence! (Dual Shield Damage Build, critique please.)


Advice


1 person marked this as a favorite.

So way back when I made this fella I wanted to come back to the build because:

1.) I had messed up on the feats (put them at even levels) and wanted to fix that.

2.) I didn't have a 20th level progression.

So after some tinkering, here is Batter McShieldbash Mark 2:

Starting stats:

Str 16 (18 after +2 human stat bonus)
Dex 15
Con 14
Int 8
Wis 10
Cha 10

Reasoning:
Dex needs to be at 15 for two weapon fighting and the later feats, one point will go into it from leveling to round it off, all other points go into strength. I didn't dump wisdom and charisma because of will saves and intimidate checks respectively

Feats:

Human: Bludgeoner
Ranger 1 (Guide Archetype): TWF
Ranger 2 (Bonus Feat): Improved Shield Bash
Ranger 3 (Bonus Feat): Endurance
Ranger 3: Enforcer
Ranger 4 / Rog 1 (Scout and Thug Archetype): Sap Adept

Damage: 1d8 (Bashing Heavy Steel shield) + 5 (Str) + 1d6 (Sneak Attack) + 2 (Sap Adept)

Number of attacks: 2

5th level overview:
So at this level, our granite faced hero has some basic skill with a shield and TWF as well as some extra damage in the form of sneak attack. I reccommend main handing a heavy steel shield and offhanding something light, like a mace, or a gauntleted fist. Also, hilariously, you can start making people run in panic at this stage whenever you hit them via enforcer and the thug archetype, the chance might not be super high, but it happens every time you hit. Awesome.

Ranger 6 (Bonus Feat)/ Rog 1: Shield Master
Ranger 6 / Rog 1: ITWF
Ranger 6 / Rog 2: Rogue Talent: Weapon Training (Weapon Focus: Heavy Shield)
Ranger 6 / Rog 3: Dazzling Display
Ranger 6 / Rog 4: Rogue Talent: Combat Feat (Shatter Defenses)

Damage: 2d6 (Bashing Heavy Steel shield with lead blades cast) + 6/7 (Str) + 2d6 (Sneak Attack) + 4 (Sap Adept)

Number of attacks: 4/5 (from haste), no penalty for two weapon fighting

10th level overview:
Yay! Shield Master, one of the foundations of this build. Comes in at the same level as ITWF as well, now the two shield madness begins. It's basically two magic weapons for the price of one which you can use with no penalty while two weapon fighting. Also Batter doesn't need a flanking buddy anymore, he can hit an enemy, intimidate them, and activate shatter defenses, making them flat footed for the rest of the combat. Also flat footedness will activate the following feat...

Ranger 6 / Rog 5: Sap Master
Ranger 6 / Rog 6: Rogue Talent: Strong Impression (Intimidating Prowess)
Ranger 6 / Rog 7: GTWF
Ranger 6 / Rog 9: Double Slice

Damage: 2d6 (Bashing Heavy Steel shield with lead blades cast) + 7/8 (Str) + 10d6 (2x Sneak Attack) + 20 (Sap Adept)

Number of attacks: 6/7 (from haste), no penalty from two weapon fighting

15th level overview:
The build is basically complete at this point. In fact, the majority of damage comes in at lvl 11, so PFS characters rejoice! Sap master triggers off any enemy intimidated with enforcer and keeps triggering off them as long as they are shaken. Thats 2x Sneak attack damage for the rest of the combat, basically. Strong Impression leaverages my STR for intimidate, and GTWF and Double Slice make for even more damage

Ranger 7 / Rog 10: Improved Critical (Heavy Shield)
Ranger 9 / Rog 10: Shield Slam
Ranger 10 / Rog 10: Bashing Finish

Damage: 2d6 (Bashing Heavy Steel shield with lead blades cast) + 9/10 (Str) + 10d6 (2x Sneak Attack) + 20 (Sap Adept)

Number of attacks: 7+/8+ (from haste and bashing finish), no penalty from two weapon fighting

20th level overview:
Just icing on the cake here, improved criticals mean I crit more often, meaning that I make more attacks via bashing finish. I wish I could take shield slam earlier in the build, because that would be sweet, but it didn't fit. Anyways, think of that as basically a free feat slot.

Rogue Talents:

Rog 2: Weapon Training (WF Heavy Shield)
Rog 4: Combat Feat (Shatter Defenses)
Rog 6: Strong Impression (Intimidating Prowess)
Rog 8: Offensive Defense
Rog 10: Crippling Strike

Phew, thats it. Batter at lvl 20 does max damage wise with 8 attacks, around 96d6 + 270 damage per round (without the benefit of buffing from friendly wizards). Enemies run screaming away from him whenever he hits them, if they're still conscious.

What do people think? Perhaps 10 levels of rogue is a couple too many, but I wanted more sneak attack damage, and to get my hands on the excellent crippling strike (basically around 10-16 points of strength damage/round along with his regular attack routine).

Thoughts?

prototype00


I really think you're missing out by not having Shield Slam at level 2. You're not required to use it when you want to finish out your attack. But as an option? It's awesome to have.

Clearly the build is very feat heavy. I would maybe put off the Sap Adept for later. Until mid levels you'll have little SA dice to use with it, and you're mostly taking it for the far more awesome Sap Master, which is currently 6 levels later than it.

You may want to consider as a feat saving alternative, analyzing the merits of using spiked shields (invalidating bludgeoner and thus the whole enforcer and sap master thing, currently there's no good way of doing nonlethal piercing damage) + Dreadful Carnage. You'll have higher base weapon damage and the ability to demoralize a 30 ft radius every time you drop someone, albeit you wouldn't get it till later.

Your build is likely higher damage, just seems like too much investment, I was never keen on maxed dpr type builds, so take my words with a grain of salt.

Also... you can afford a small cha penalty. A -1 or -2 isn't going to ruin your intimidate modifier.


I love this. I'm not great at optimization or anything, but I just love the idea behind this. A guy just beating another guy into submission entirely with nonlethal damage. Haha, this is great.


StreamOfTheSky wrote:
I really think you're missing out by not having Shield Slam at level 2. You're not required to use it when you want to finish out your attack. But as an option? It's awesome to have.

I know -_-. I really wanted to put it in early, but miscalculating the feats gave me less room to maneuver. I probably could take a second level of rogue before finishing off the first 6 levels of ranger, but that delays Shield Master even more. I'll give it a go and see how it works.

Quote:
Clearly the build is very feat heavy. I would maybe put off the Sap Adept for later. Until mid levels you'll have little SA dice to use with it, and you're mostly taking it for the far more awesome Sap Master, which is currently 6 levels later than it.

Good advice as well, I'll rejigger it a bit and see how it looks.

Quote:
You may want to consider as a feat saving alternative, analyzing the merits of using spiked shields (invalidating bludgeoner and thus the whole enforcer and sap master thing, currently there's no good way of doing nonlethal piercing damage) + Dreadful Carnage. You'll have higher base weapon damage and the ability to demoralize a 30 ft radius every time you drop someone, albeit you wouldn't get it till later.

In another world with Bizarro Batter, that is perhaps the case. But a thought I had, along with making the shields merciful (for even more damage), Batter could also make them Transformative. Not to copy any particular weapons, but to make the shields spiked shields when facing enemies immune to nonlethal damage. Its probably good for another 1d6 damage.

Quote:
Your build is likely higher damage, just seems like too much investment, I was never keen on maxed dpr type builds, so take my words with a grain of salt.

That you have the right of. I didn't build it with much control in mind. So it does suffer in that regard. I'm glad my Ninja Gransmaster build turned out more nuanced.

Quote:
Also... you can afford a small cha penalty. A -1 or -2 isn't going to ruin your intimidate modifier.

And spoil his boyish good looks? But yeah, I could take a couple of points off and put them back into int.

But overall, how do you think he'll do in actual play?

prototype00


DoctorYesNinja wrote:
I love this. I'm not great at optimization or anything, but I just love the idea behind this. A guy just beating another guy into submission entirely with nonlethal damage. Haha, this is great.

Why, thank you. I think deep down I'm just trying to popularize one of the more powerful rogue builds that I think puts them on par with fighters.

prototype00


I think if you do listen to me and put off Sap Adept, you should just go through Ranger 6 before doing any rogue to fast track the shield master.

I can see you're trying to maximize feats through rogue talents and you want to hit rogue 2 for weapon focus, rather than spending a general feat on it, to start on the shatter defenses line, and that seems to require doing rogue before Ranger 6. But...if your DM goes with RAW, Rogue can actually gain Combat Trick twice, once as a Ninja Trick, which will allow you to take weapon focus (and dazzling display) earlier and you'll still have enough feat talents to cover your higher level needs.

I think he'll do fine in actual play as long as his strength and non-SA damage output is respectable. Relying on foes to be vulnerable to nonlethal damage and fear (and sneak attack) to contribute in combat is risky.


StreamOfTheSky wrote:
I think if you do listen to me and put off Sap Adept, you should just go through Ranger 6 before doing any rogue to fast track the shield master.

Yeah, thats what I was planning on trying out. I'll post an updated build when I get around to it.

Quote:
I can see you're trying to maximize feats through rogue talents and you want to hit rogue 2 for weapon focus, rather than spending a general feat on it, to start on the shatter defenses line, and that seems to require doing rogue before Ranger 6. But...if your DM goes with RAW, Rogue can actually gain Combat Trick twice, once as a Ninja Trick, which will allow you to take weapon focus (and dazzling display) earlier and you'll still have enough feat talents to cover your higher level needs.

That was the general plan, this build is so feat heavy you have to budget for every one. About the ninja trick workaround, that sounds doable, but I'm aiming for the most DM fiat proof build I can go for here (as indeed I do for all my builds). This character should be good to go in any game, which I think is a good thing, don't you.

Quote:
I think he'll do fine in actual play as long as his strength and non-SA damage output is respectable. Relying on foes to be vulnerable to nonlethal damage and fear (and sneak attack) to contribute in combat is risky.

Ah, the ever present bugbear. Sap adepts/Sap Masters put out a lot of damage, but it only comes in very narrow circumstances, no constructs, undead, plants or oozes. Still, smacking a dragon in the place and having it fly off in panic is worth it in my book.

There is still a reasonably wide swathe of things that fall into the full SA damage purview (including most of the big bads of the settings). Non-SA wise, he is a basic strength ranger with two 2d6 one handed weapons, so I suppose that works out all right, what do you think?

I'll post equipment choices later, but thanks for the critique.

prototype00


1 person marked this as a favorite.

So here is the build, updated to incorporate Shield Slam earlier. In order to get the feats that I needed at appropriate times, I included 3 levels of brawler fighter, which of course cuts my favorite enemy bonus by 2 (from missing lvl 10 ranger) but adds +3 damage whenever I use shields. So I think it's a good trade for two feats (basically one more than I would have got with ranger.

Batter McShieldbash

First they laughed,
Then they cried,
Then they were afraid

Ranger 7 (Guide)/ Rogue 10 (Thug, Scout)/ Fighter 3 (Brawler)

Lvl 1 stats:

Str 16 (18 after +2 human stat bonus)
Dex 15
Con 14
Int 8
Wis 10
Cha 10

Lvl 20 Stats (no magic)

Str 22
Dex 16
Con 14
Int 8
Wis 10
Cha 10

Feats:

Human: Bludgeoner
Ranger 1 (Guide Archetype): TWF
Ranger 2 (Bonus Feat): Improved Shield Bash
Ranger 2/ Rog 1 (Scout and Thug Archetype): Shield Slam
Ranger 2/ Rog 2 :Rogue Talent: Weapon Training (Weapon Focus: Heavy Shield)
Ranger 3 (Bonus Feat) / Rog 2 : Endurance
Ranger 3/ Rog 2 : Enforcer

Damage: 1d8 (Bashing Heavy Steel shield) + 5 (Str) + 1d6 (Sneak Attack)

Number of attacks: 2

lvl5 analysis:
Not much changed here, I'm happy to get WF earlier, and Shield Slam makes for a nice low level denial, which should get more useful as I level up. Enforcer is still around allowing for all kinds of intimidate Shenanigans

Ranger 5/ Rog 2 : ITWF
Ranger 6 (Bonus Feat)/ Rog 2: Shield Master
Ranger 6/ Rog 3: Sap Adept
Ranger 6/ Rog 4: Rogue Talent: Combat Trick(Dazzling Display)

Damage: 2d6 (Bashing Heavy Steel shield with lead blades cast) + 6/7 (Str) + 2d6 (Sneak Attack) + 4 (Sap Adept)

Number of attacks: 4/5 (from haste), no penalty for two weapon fighting

lvl10 analysis:
Also nothing that different here, by 10th level the character is doing decent damage with a fairly nasty sneak attack sting

Ranger 6/ Rog 5: Sap Master
Ranger 6/ Rog 5/ Fighter 1 (Brawler) (Bonus Feat): Shatter Defenses
Ranger 6/ Rog 5/ Fighter 2 (Bonus Feat): GTWF
Ranger 6/ Rog 5/ Fighter 2: Bashing Finish
Ranger 6/ Rog 6/ Fighter 3: Rogue Talent: Strong Impression (Intimidating Prowess)
Ranger 6/ Rog 6/ Fighter 3: Improved Critical (Heavy Shield)

Damage: 2d6 (Bashing Heavy Steel shield with lead blades cast) + 7/8 (Str) + 6d6 (Sneak Attack) + 6 (Sap Adept)

Number of attacks: 6+/7+ (from haste and bashing finish), no penalty for two weapon fighting

lvl15 analysis:
15th level Batter is not quite the powerhouse of the previous build, because he loses around 4d6 damage from SA. On the other hand he gets bashing finish much ealier and that might make a difference in the build. Still, putting up a fair amount of damage even for all that.

Ranger 6/ Rog 8/ Fighter 3: Double Slice
Ranger 6/ Rog 10/ Fighter 3: *Free Slot*

Damage: 2d6 (Bashing Heavy Steel shield with lead blades cast) + 7/8 (Str) + 10d6 (Sneak Attack) + 10 (Sap Adept)

lvl 20 analysis:
Much the same as before, Batter comes into his own here damage wise. I'm quite happy with how it turned out.

Rogue Talents:

Rog 2: Weapon Training (WF Heavy Shield)
Rog 4: Combat Feat (Dazzling Display)
Rog 6: Strong Impression (Intimidating Prowess)
Rog 8: Offensive Defense
Rog 10: Crippling Strike

So, overall, I'm reasonably pleased with it, bashing finish comes in earlier, but to get it I moved double slice up to a later slot (reasonable in my estimation, but those feats can be moved around).

The only thing I'm not 100% satisfied with is Shield Master being moved from level 7 to level 8, but I think there was no way around that problem.

Also, because of the fighter levels, I've slightly delayed my SA progression, which is a shame. But overall, a good build, I think.

prototype00

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