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Grand Lodge

How many DMs allow their Players to take some parts of an Archetype without taking all parts?

Certainly we've all heard Players ask. And even more certainly we've all said that we'd love this or that Archetype if it weren't for this or that "one thing."

Anyone thought of allowing Players to pick and choose parts of an Archetype?

Sczarni RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Since archetypes have come out and depending on the archetype, I have allowed players to mix and match abilities. For example, if the ranger hasn't seen a forest for a couple levels/years, he may grab an urban ranger ability or even transition over completely to the new archetype, provided he dedicates himself to the transition (must be RPed).

Archetypes aren't balanced by what each ability replaces, but as the sum of the whole.

I don't allow it.

I limit my players to a single archetype in each class. I don't know if that's an official rule (I've seen a few builds on these boards that combine several archetypes from the same class)
As far as I'm concerned, an archetype represents an uncommon background or specialist training that gives a specific advantage in certain situations.
In the words of the great teacher 'The hunter who chases two rabbits will catch neither'

The rules are explicit that you can combine them.

A character can take more than one archetype and garner additional alternate class features, but none of the alternate class features can replace or alter the same class feature from the core class as another alternate class feature. For example, a paladin could not be both a hospitaler and an undead scourge since they both modify the smite evil class feature and both replace the aura of justice class feature. A paladin could, however, be both an undead scourge and a warrior of the holy light, since none of their new class features replace the same core class feature.

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

You shoudlnt allow someone to take pieces of a paizo archetype without the whole. They aren't designed to be replacement class features. The designers have explicately said that sometimes a weaker ability is given at one level in exchange for a stronger ability at another.

Grand Lodge

Yeah, I guess I won't allow it -- I didn't realize they had been designed where each "trade" wasn't specifically equal but the "whole" of the features are equal.

As a side-note -- this seems poor design to me. Theoretically it's easy to multi-class and, with an Archetype, trade a weaker Core-Class Feature for a stronger Archetype at say, Level 3 -- and then not take any further levels in the Class.

Well, you say that, but ordinary, unmodified classes are no different. Remember dead levels? It's always been possible to take the good stuff then move out of the class rather than take a less powerful level. The thing that keeps that in check is you probably picked the class you started with in the first place because its the best overall for doing what you want to do.

I'd certainly allow people to take one part of an archetype and not another, but only on the condition that it looked balanced enough to me. In many (most?) cases I'd have to refuse.

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