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Soon getting to play, finally. Character suggestions for supporter!


Advice


It seems I'm finally going to get to play offline. Wonderful, it'll be the first time in maybe 10 years that I get to see the other side of the DM screen (as I've been the only DM-willing around before).

It seems I'm going to play with one other PC, who is more or less completely new to PnP roleplaying (and the d20 system). I know one other player (who's also completely green) is interested in joining but hasn't asked the GM yet, so maybe, just maybe we'll be three PC's.

Now, I'm thinking of what to play. As I'm decent at optimizing and know the system well, I fear I might accidentally out-optimize the other player and I don't want to do that, so my idea is to make something odd or "suboptimal", but I've not chosen yet. I'm also thinking the character being more of a defensive/support character is good to not outshine the other player - it's better they be the center of the action, I've got nothing against standing back on the glory.

So hit me with your ideas! I think it might be Core only, and I know nothing of the campaign, but other than that, anything goes.

I've been thinking of maybe like a "warsinger" type of character, bard/fighter with mostly defensive abilities and buffs. Or maybe a monk as "precision support" that can scout a bit. Or a rogue that relies heavily on alchemical items and having "gadgets" (and if we branch out to the APG I can splash in some alchemist into the mix).

I don't know anything about the campaign or the other PC, so I can't decide yet, and so now I'm mostly looking for input.


Bard/Cleric. Lots of buffs, and healing. Medium armor, decent health points and access to a fair number of weapons if they need a flank buddy. Access to a good amount of skills, Charisma is usefull for both classes if you selective channel.


May work, but I feel I'd rather stay away from the cleric class... It just... Feels weird. Never liked that one. Also it leads to being either too weak (as in, incompetent) or needing to dump Int (which I'd rather not) or be very, very squishy in combat.

Might work if the other player will be using a melee class, otherwise it seems it would work quite bad.

I don't want to be too heavy on casting either, as that often tends to hog the spotlight.


If your other player goes melee, I'd suggest going Witch. You have some healing capabilities and a ton of support options. Use Hexes like Ward and Fortune to pump up your ally and make him feel stronger. Slumber is one of the best crowd control spells out there, and Misfortune helps protect your ally.

You won't have many blasty spells, so focus on crowd control, debuffing and even healing spells. Basically, you should be able to setup conditions that allow your companion to shine.


Possiblity I haven't tried, but heard works well.

Bard with whip going for the improved trip and improved disarm.
You are not doing the kills.
You are buffing then setting the bad guys up for your fellows to kill.


Witch sounds pretty awesome, if anything outside core is available - but there's a large risk there isn't. A bard that plays a bit like a witch might be an option otherwise.


Since the other characters are new they should probably play fairly simple characters. A skill monkey of some sort is probably best. Either a Ranger or a Bard would probably work. I would also suggest helping the other players and not making your character until you find out what they are playing.


No offense, but after reading your responses, I dont think a support class is what your really after. You actually want to be a front line fighter, just not outshine the more inexperienced players. Support traditionally means, buffs, battlefield control, healing, providing flank. If classes with D8 hp and medium armor are to squishy, and witch is too risky as well..You really arent going to be happy with any traditional support class.

Have you considered some of the more fun, but tradtionally suboptimal front line fighter builds? Maybe a straight fighter that Prestiges into Duelist? Also there are some cool hybrid classes and archtypes like the Inquisitor and Arcane Duelist Bard, that are expressly designed to get dirty in combat while having a nice array of skills and abilities.


Try this!

Spoiler:
It's not finished yet but I move forward with it:(


Lazurin Arborlon wrote:
No offense, but after reading your responses, I dont think a support class is what your really after. You actually want to be a front line fighter, just not outshine the more inexperienced players. Support traditionally means, buffs, battlefield control, healing, providing flank. If classes with D8 hp and medium armor are to squishy, and witch is too risky as well..You really arent going to be happy with any traditional support class.

Oh, d8/medium armor is not too squishy! The strongest choices for me right now is witchy bard, bard/fighter or rogue. Or witch if we have access to splat. All pretty much support characters.

The reason it feels too squishy with a bard/cleric that doesn't dump Int is because to be decent as a bard/cleric you'd need at least 14 in the casting stats, that's 10 points which leaves me with just 5 points left on a 15 pt buy for str/dex/con... And that's what makes me squishy. None of the three physical stats can really be dumped if you want to survive in medium armor.

Support can be a lot of things, and here I'm mainly talking about a character that acts as a strength amplifier/weakness reducer in other characters so to speak. Whether by debuffs, flanks, drawing fire, party buffs, or whatever.

While I am looking for a character that's mainly for support, I still want to make it durable enough to survive in the place it's supposed to be. Cleric/bard could work, if you dumped strength to the abyss, dropped the heavy armor and just kept back - but then I'd rather just be a bard.


I would caution against a whip bard for a few reasons. One, it is an optimised bard build. The bard isn't a suboptimal enough class to warrant an optimal build for what you want. Also, if I were a new player, I would personally just want to jump into things. I wouldn't be at all optimization minded, particularly in terms of strategy. If I were a melee, I wouldn't know I got a bonus for attacking a prone enemy, nor would I be inclined to do so, figuring you were taking care of it, and I would want a more "live" opponent anyway. If I were ranged or a caster, the bonus would be mostly irrelevant.

A new player is probably going to want to get into the grit of the game, rather than be handed a lot of things that make the game easier. What's more fun and memorable, the fights where you almost die, or getting a +4 to hit everything?

I would echo Lazurin's suggestion, for a different reason. Don't just be a suboptimal build. Be a suboptimal party choice. Your experience will make the character/party viable without making the newbies feel like you're bringing the training wheels for them.

In short, be a rogue. ;) Optimize slightly with UMD. If the new guy rolls a caster, you're the suboptimal tank. If they roll a melee, you're the suboptimal support. If he rolls another rogue, then you have the ultimate suboptimal party.


IMO a rogue sounds like a good fit for you. Your support can be in skills, flanking, and maybe even dirty trick maneuvers if you want... that will set the other players up nicely to do some damage. You would have all sorts of options with rogue talents, and rogues are also good at both melee and ranged combat. They aren't magic heavy, either (though you could have some magical options with Use Magic Device and/or your rogue talents). A lot of people brush the rogue aside in Pathfinder... but it really is a great class.

EDIT: Also wanted to say that a Fighter/Rogue team is like bread and butter - they just always go well together. In pretty much every game I've ever DM'd where there was a fighter and a rogue in the party, they almost always end up being "buddies" in-game and strategizing with each other. In general all party members should do this, but there just always seems to be a closer bond with fighter/rogue team mates... and I'm not sure why. :p


Rogue does sound good. If I go with it, I'll make sure to get some alchemy done too, I've always wanted to play a "well-equipped" rogue that uses smokesticks 'n' stuff.

I guess it'll have to depend on what she (or they) decides to play.


Or maybe a monk played like a rogue, when I think about it. Monks are cool. Sometimes I get stuck in the name/stereotype of a class, when it's really just a bunch of mechanics.

A scounderelous rapscallion dabblin' in alchemy might just as well be a considered a "monk" as a "rogue".

Maybe a grey market craftsman/dealer, where the "monastic order" is actually a street gang. It kind of fits for a character that doesn't REALLY want to get into proper battles either, just finds itself there time and again... Lacking proper training in weapons, treating it more like a barfight. I won't need to dump any stats either, can leave int/cha/str at base, focus on dex/wis with a splash of con.

I can work with this.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Inquisitor of Irori can give you the Rogue/Monk feel you desire.
You will have Improved Unarmed Strike, as the unarmed strike is your god's favored weapon, and you can go core neutral.
Also, you can go Heretic Inquisitor for some stealthy goodness, and with the Wisdom of the Flesh trait, you will get x2 wisdom to stealth.
Later, pick up a Guided AoMF, and your wisdom will do most of the heavy lifting for you.

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