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[Unchained] Summoner Guide


Pathfinder RPG General Discussion

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Scarab Sages

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Guide Here

I figured that the existing summoner guide had become a bit outdated now that Unchained is out and decided to write a guide that covers the changes made in Unchained.

It was written especially with Society play in mind, but does apply for home games, of course.

I'd like to gather some opinions: what do you think? Is there something you disagree with? I'm open to suggestions and will happily discuss well-explained views. Grammar nazis are also welcome - I hate grammatical mistakes, so please be merciless.

This thread is not intended for discussion on whether or not unchained summoner was a successfully developed idea. Please stay in-topic: discussing how to make the best use of unchained summoner.


First off let me say I like the guide. It's clear and easy to read.

I kinda disagree with Slam being blue and Claws being green. Yes, Claws do less damage, but you get two attacks compared to the one from Slam.

To use Nirvana Kitten as an example.

Attack: bite +3 (d6+2), 2 claws +3 (d4+2)
Or

Attack: bite +3 (d6+2), slam +3 (d8+2)

Same bonus to hit, less minimum and maximum damage. Now, if you only expect to need that one slam, I suppose it's good, and if your Eidolon's hands are occupied then it's great, but I still think claws should be blue.

Liberty's Edge

I think you're selling inevitables pretty short. They get bonuses vs. and eventual immunity from a lot of 'save or suck' effects. Yeah, they lack elemental resistances, but I'd much rather have huge bonuses to resist paralysis, sleep, and stun than have a one elemental resistance at 5-15.

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32

MightyGlacier wrote:

Guide Here

I figured that the existing summoner guide had become a bit outdated now that Unchained is out and decided to write a guide that covers the changes made in Unchained.

It was written especially with Society play in mind, but does apply for home games, of course.

I'd like to gather some opinions: what do you think? Is there something you disagree with? I'm open to suggestions and will happily discuss well-explained views. Grammar nazis are also welcome - I hate grammatical mistakes, so please be merciless.

I like it. I can't really disagree with any of your assessments or advice. It's clear that the blue evolution recommendations are about damage output and no other consideration, but you say that up front, so I'm good with it.

Not a grammar nit, but I saw this:

Somewhere in 1-point evolutions, Improved natural armor, you wrote:
Then again, if you feel like your eidolon is being too often, might be worth considering.

Missing a word there.


I don't have access to the book yet, but is there room for an azata archer build? What's the soonest you could give arms to a serpentine eidolon? Because that would probably be the best option.

Liberty's Edge

Melkiador wrote:
I don't have access to the book yet, but is there room for an azata archer build? What's the soonest you could give arms to a serpentine eidolon? Because that would probably be the best option.

Serpentine Azata actually start with the arms Evolution (presumably for a lillend sorta look). So...you could do this from level 1 if you wanted.

Should work fine, though the Feat intensive nature of archery combined with an Eidolon's delayed HD as compared to a PC makes it a less than ideal choice from an optimization perspective. I mean, yes, you can have Manyshot by 9th level, but no earlier, and you won't have anything but that tree and Precise Shot at that point. Having both Deadly Aim and Clustered shots on top of that will need to wait for 14th level.


Not to be spell correct (Ok, yes to be spell correct, but not triumphantly or maliciously) but in improved nat. armor you said "If your eidolon is being a lot" I'm going to assume you meant being hit a lot, and leave it at that.

Scarab Sages

Azten wrote:

First off let me say I like the guide. It's clear and easy to read.

I kinda disagree with Slam being blue and Claws being green. Yes, Claws do less damage, but you get two attacks compared to the one from Slam.
...
Same bonus to hit, less minimum and maximum damage. Now, if you only expect to need that one slam, I suppose it's good, and if your Eidolon's hands are occupied then it's great, but I still think claws should be blue.

Thanks, that means a lot to me.

Point made. I agree that 2 claws is very good primary attack and I don't know why I ranked it green. I was probably focused on it requiring legs. I'm changing the color to blue.

Deadmanwalking wrote:
I think you're selling inevitables pretty short. They get bonuses vs. and eventual immunity from a lot of 'save or suck' effects. Yeah, they lack elemental resistances, but I'd much rather have huge bonuses to resist paralysis, sleep, and stun than have a one elemental resistance at 5-15.

I can see what you mean, but keep in mind that save or suck isn't as big of a deal against eidolons as it is against characters. Eidolons don't die and if they are hit with a save or suck spell that makes them useless for combat, you can just dismiss the eidolon and start using summon monster SLA. When the combat is over and the summoner calls his eidolon back, the effects of save or suck have either ended already or are about to. Energy resistances, on the other hand, keep your eidolon's hp high: summoners are way better at avoiding save or suck effects than healing hp.

At least that's how I see the matter. You're probably right that I am selling them a bit too short, but when I'm comparing subtypes that have lots of energy resistances to a subtype that has none, it's pretty easy to bash that poor fellow. But I'm very curious to what others have to say about this matter.

Christopher Dudley wrote:

Not a grammar nit, but I saw this:

Somewhere in 1-point evolutions, Improved natural armor, you wrote:
Then again, if you feel like your eidolon is being too often, might be worth considering.
Missing a word there.

Thanks a lot, it was naturally meant to say "is being hit too often". It's now fixed! In fact, I fixed two other grammatical errors as well.

Melkiador wrote:
I don't have access to the book yet, but is there room for an azata archer build? What's the soonest you could give arms to a serpentine eidolon? Because that would probably be the best option.

Like Deadmanwalking said (and like I wrote in the guide, see Azata's base form section), Azata serpentine has arms for free.

I do not recommend having archer eidolon. The damage output scales really slowly and the build is very feat-heavy. However, if you would like to go that path, it might be very funny to play as two archers: prioritize your summoner's Dexterity as well so you'll be two archers raining arrows!

Scarab Sages

Dukeh555 wrote:
Not to be spell correct (Ok, yes to be spell correct, but not triumphantly or maliciously) but in improved nat. armor you said "If your eidolon is being a lot" I'm going to assume you meant being hit a lot, and leave it at that.

Whoa, you managed to sneak attack me! Didn't see your message before submitting my previous post

Yes, like Christopher Dudley pointed out, a word was missing there. It's fixed now and yes, it was meant to say being hit too often.


Deadmanwalking wrote:
Melkiador wrote:
I don't have access to the book yet, but is there room for an azata archer build? What's the soonest you could give arms to a serpentine eidolon? Because that would probably be the best option.

Serpentine Azata actually start with the arms Evolution (presumably for a lillend sorta look). So...you could do this from level 1 if you wanted.

Should work fine, though the Feat intensive nature of archery combined with an Eidolon's delayed HD as compared to a PC makes it a less than ideal choice from an optimization perspective. I mean, yes, you can have Manyshot by 9th level, but no earlier, and you won't have anything but that tree and Precise Shot at that point. Having both Deadly Aim and Clustered shots on top of that will need to wait for 14th level.

This is my PFS Summoner+ Eidolon build.

I figured by building her out to be a ranged combatant, I might take away some of the stigma of "Oh, great. An Eidolon. Guess the party fighter/barbarian won't be able to stand in melee." By opening up the range, I anticipate it will let the melee do their thing without my class ability getting in the way.

As far as build, I went Biped on mine. The higher Str meshes well with the bow one can buy for 2 prestige and the reduction in to hit is minor if one purchases Dex with the Ability Increase Evo. A fun trick is giving her Scent where possible, as this opens up use of Pheromone Arrows for an extra 2 to hit and damage. I'm not rushing Manyshot, instead looking for Deadly Aim as I'd rather the 3 or so arrows I'm putting out do solid damage than add one more shot. That may be a mistake, and I'll re-evaluate as I level.

On top of that, I made my Summoner an archer as well, though one focusing on using a heavy repeating crossbow. The five round magazine means I don't need to take Rapid Reload, freeing me up to take the regular archery feats, substituting Arcane Strike for Deadly Aim so as not to overburden my average BAB. Since I'm a half elf for the extra evolution points, Ancestral Arms as a racial trait gave me proficiency for 'free' also.

Around level 10, I reckon I'll grab the scent evolution off my Aspect ability to also gain the benefits of Pheromone Arrows, which should make a neat little trick. I'm also pumping UMD on both Eidolon and Summoner, so wands of Gravity Bow (2d8 crossbow, 2d6 longbow) make for interesting purchases. The Endless Ammunition enchantment is on my radar for future equipment purchases once fame and gold allow, but in the meantime the occasional oil of abundant ammunition at the start of a fight once I get Rapid Shot should stave off my needing to reload. Not that reloading is such a terrible thing, since my Azata will be plugging away with her longbow ensuring consistent damage while I do so. The best part is, by making both Eidolon and Summoner operate at range, survivability for both increases and I can make use of Shield Ally.

I submit that a ranged Azata build should go into the guide.

Scarab Sages

Interesting. What is your specific build? Biped Azata with what feats? Which evolutions would you say are the most important ones? How much do the items cost (you mentioned pheromone arrows, composite longbow and heavy repeating crossbow, which I imagine are not cheap to come by). I'll mention the build if it holds up against other eidolon builds of same level.

From the looks of it though, your build fixes the main issues I had with ranged eidolon: the damage output. Nice work.


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Summoner:
Stat spread- emphasize Dex and Cha, if you stick with the crossbow you don't need Str. Highly recommend not dumping Int since the two skill points per level is important for Perception to see what you need to shoot and Use Magic Device for wands of things like Abundant Ammunition or Gravity Bow.

Feats- Point Blank(1), Precise(3), Rapid(5), Arcane Strike(7), Manyshot(9), Clustered Shots(11)

Azata:
Biped base form. Important Evolutions include Ability Increase(Dex), Scent, and Skilled(UMD). Can select additional evolutions as points allow, but the core needs of the build are Ability Increase for Dex for hit and Scent for the pheromone arrows. Skilled is for activating wands of Cure Light Wounds and Gravity Bow.

Feats- Point Blank(1), Precise(3), Rapid(6), Deadly Aim/Manyshot(9)

Equipment-
Hvy Repeating Crossbow. Price starts at 400gp (ouch) so something you'd buy after level 1. Start with a light crossbow until you can afford this. Enchant with +1, then with Endless Ammunition(+2 ability) when you can afford it. Something like 18,700 in the long run.

Darkwood Composite III Longbow. PFS players pick these up for 2PA, everyone else spends about 750 gp. Eventually enchant with all the ranged goodies, but make sure to grab Adaptive for +2000 price so that the bow grows as your Eidolon's strength does.

Pheromone Arrows. They're 15gp a pop, but you only need to hit with 1 per bad guy per fight. Plug a guy with one, focus him down with durable arrows (to offset ammo costs, those Pheromone shots ain't cheap!), then plug the next guy. If these start cutting too deeply into your budget, consider saving them for boss fights or foes with hard to crack AC. We're really using these for the +2 hit, not so much the +2 damage (though it's nice!)

Other nice stuff: Bracers of Archery (replace with Bracers of Falcon's Aim in non PFS) for whichever of you is having trouble hitting. Core item

Wand of Gravity Bow. 750 gp per wand for you and your Eidolon to start throwing arrows that do greatsword damage.

It's worth noting that with the Summoner possibly throwing up Haste, that Eidolon is putting out 4 shots a round starting at 7, with the Summoner adding in 3 more at that point. That's a lot of dakka! Azata-chan adds in a 5th shot at 9 with Manyshot (or stays at 4 but upgrades to .50 bmg instead of 7.62mm) and the Summoner adds his 4th and possibly 5th shots at the same time.

Fun ancillary tricks: Worried about getting charged? Create Pit's got you covered! Drop one a little in front of your firing line and worry no more! Getting in a shooting match? Your squishy summoner can fire from prone! Drop down (possibly behind your pit) and keep firing, comrade!


Sup, spell correct again. In the azata subtype intro, right at the end you said bite instead of bit when comparing with the angel.


There will be a section about archetypes (the compatible ones at least)?

Grand Lodge

Thank you for posting this up.

I am currently playing with a level 8 Master summor in a home game but this book is comming in on Saterday and my GM said I may gave to change my summor to follow this one depending on the changes. One thing I think you should add is the recomindation for the Mount pet build as it is a common build I have seen.

Since I have not seen the book yet if things have changed to the class that can affect it you should put down and rate the archtyps on how they would be with the new summonr.

Scarab Sages

To-do list:

  • Mention the ranged eidolon build
  • Fix spelling mistake
  • Write a section on archetypes
  • Sample build for mount eidolon


On further assessment: A strong case can be made for skipping Deadly and Manyshot until later and taking Clustered Shots at level 9 on the Azata. You're putting out 3 shots, 4 hasted with each doing in the ballpark of 1d8+6 before anything esoteric. With clustered in the mix, you're dumping a single hit of average 42 points instead of 4 at average of 10.5 ish, allowing you to worry less if you run across something with DR you can't get around. Leaving out Deadly Aim leaves 4 damage a shot on the table (6 damage once you hit 10), but you're 10% more likely to hit which is... noticeable.

Note: this is a lowball estimate based on purely level ups, Ability Increase evolutions, and a basic +1 Adaptive bow. Gravity Bow increases average damage to 52 points. Pheromone Arrows + Scent increases Gravity Bow damage by another 8 ish damage for an even 60. More esoteric options may increase damage more.


Mighty Glacier wrote:

To-do list:

  • Mention the ranged eidolon build
  • Fix spelling mistake
  • Write a section on archetypes
  • Sample build for mount eidolon

I was just telling my friend about this thread, misspoke, and said "mounted eidolon". Then a really niche build popped in my head,Mao I'm going to make it and send it to you.


Azten wrote:
and said "mounted eidolon".

Oh dear.

Between this and my wanting to play around with the magical girlfriend trope with my summoner ("I don't know who she is or how she got here! She just showed up along with this rune!"), my mind went places.


Fantastic guide. Brief and to the point, and I'm sure it will answer the questions of many aspiring PFS Summoners as they try out the class.

I would suggest a special mention for serpentine Azatas: Tail slap is their sole attack, making it primary instead of secondary. This allows you to give it reach for Combat Reflexes shenanigans while using a non reach weapon for when you want to be the aggressor. Or good dex for an archer. Or even some kind of Agile/Slashing Grace build. Just a shame that tails can't get a trip evolution for some reason.

That, and more details about ways to run Skill Eidolons. I play one as my main in PFS and I would love to see your take on it.

Edit: flagged to have it moved to the Advice forum. I'm sure they'd love to see your work.


Rosc wrote:
I would suggest a special mention for serpentine Azatas: Or good dex for an archer.

See, I considered that for my archer build but rejected it. Here's why:

It's true that you get better Dex off serpentine, but at the cost of worse Str, slower speed, and poorer saves. Biped has strong Fort + Will which is pretty much golden, and our focus in Dex guarantees a decent Reflex as well. By contrast, Serpentine drops Fort, which opens up a lot of nasty negative effects, particularly since the Azata's Con isn't likely to rise higher than its starting value anytime soon.

Archers need Str for solid damage. Poor Str can be offset with feats like weapon specialization or with other static damage buffs, but we don't have em. So if we do take Serpentine, we're probably putting our first instance of Ability Increase into Str, meaning we're talking +2 Dex -2 Str compared to a Biped. Admittedly, a pretty petty difference, and probably not worth kvetching over, but... At level 2 (where my build is at currently) this would translate to +6 for 1d8+2 vs +5 for 1d8+3. Early on, the difference is noticable, but in the long run it probably won't be. Early on, keeping the higher Str opens up the option of switching to a (relatively) cheap Greatsword and smashing face when the enemy closes the range or has insurmountable DR or when our tank drops. Keeping the Dex high gives us 1 better hit with our bow, 1 better init, and 1 better AC, but we get boosts to our AC already, 1 point of init won't save us, and the 5% hit with the bow is easy to cover with things like PBS or pheromone arrows.

Finally, we're talking -10 base speed. We get a climb speed, which is nifty right up until level 5 where we get flight. When we DO get flight, that climb speed ceases to matter by and large and the reduction in base speed means a reduction in flight speed as well. It's also possible that the Eidolon ends up being the only 20' speed character in the group, presenting a situation in which your group is slowed up and given the extremely thin ice Eidolons already tread upon in many social circles... it's something to consider. So mechanically it's bad and in fluffy bunny land it makes kitty princess Fluffikins cry. You monster.

There's doubtless some good options for Serpentine base form eidolons, but as far as Azata go, it feels like a trap option. YMMV, of course. I just felt Biped was an over all stronger choice. Also less difficult to explain to the parents when you bring the outsider home for supper after dating for six months.

I think we need a clarification on what we gain when the base form and the subtype conflict as regards attacks. Does an Azata really not get claws on Biped or Bite on Serpentine? The subtype references a base form with a list of free evolutions, but the base form contains those evolutions as a subset of the evolutions it already has. Does the subtype remove evolutions from the base form or are the evolutions listed in addition to those the base form grants? The text is remarkably unclear.


I would hazard a climb speed and archer build is a vastly superior build than any movement otherwise until flight. Who cares how fast you can move once you're up a wall and no one can reach you?


Cavall wrote:
I would hazard a climb speed and archer build is a vastly superior build than any movement otherwise until flight. Who cares how fast you can move once you're up a wall and no one can reach you?

Yes, but you get flight at five. Your climb speed matters for four levels. And you're locked into that base form (and worse saves) for life unless you're an Evolutionist Summoner. I don't think it's worth it.

There's also the small matter of losing the boots slot on the Eidolon because you don't have feet. I guess you can spend Evo points on limbs(legs) but that seems bad too. This issue may not be as important since you share magic item slots with your Eidolon, the case can be made that the Summoner would wear magic boots instead of Azata-chan.

Scarab Sages

Mighty Glacier wrote:

To-do list:

  • Mention the ranged eidolon build
  • Fix spelling mistake
  • Write a section on archetypes
  • Sample build for mount eidolon

Update complete! Took me ~2 hours, I fear I may have rushed the Other Eidolon Builds section, so I may clean it up later. Or not.

Azten wrote:
I was just telling my friend about this thread, misspoke, and said "mounted eidolon". Then a really niche build popped in my head,Mao I'm going to make it and send it to you.

It's the most ridiculous idea I've ever seen. So of course I included it. Thanks!

Rosc wrote:

Fantastic guide. Brief and to the point, and I'm sure it will answer the questions of many aspiring PFS Summoners as they try out the class.

I would suggest a special mention for serpentine Azatas: Tail slap is their sole attack, making it primary instead of secondary. This allows you to give it reach for Combat Reflexes shenanigans while using a non reach weapon for when you want to be the aggressor. Or good dex for an archer. Or even some kind of Agile/Slashing Grace build. Just a shame that tails can't get a trip evolution for some reason.

That, and more details about ways to run Skill Eidolons. I play one as my main in PFS and I would love to see your take on it.

Edit: flagged to have it moved to the Advice forum. I'm sure they'd love to see your work.

Thanks, that means a lot to me.

Yes, I can see that people are starting to realize the potential of Serpentine Azatas, I'm very curious to see what kind of builds people will come up with for that one.

Added a Skill Eidolon section. I hope I got it right, I'm looking forward to hear your thoughts.

And agh, I should have posted this in Advice section in the first place. Sorry mods!

Ryzoken wrote:
I think we need a clarification on what we gain when the base form and the subtype conflict as regards attacks. Does an Azata really not get claws on Biped or Bite on Serpentine? The subtype references a base form with a list of free evolutions, but the base form contains those evolutions as a subset of the evolutions it already has. Does the subtype remove evolutions from the base form or are the evolutions listed in addition to those the base form grants? The text is remarkably unclear.

If the subtype doesn't mention claws on Biped or Bite on Serpentine, that means no claws, no bite. I think the main confusion here is because the base forms section mentions claws and bite, even though some subtypes don't get them. At least that's how I understand it.

Cavall wrote:
I would hazard a climb speed and archer build is a vastly superior build than any movement otherwise until flight. Who cares how fast you can move once you're up a wall and no one can reach you?

I think this idea is at least worth exploring. How does Ranged Serp Azata's damage compare to its Biped Azata brother? Is the climb speed reliable enough to shoot arrows while attached to a wall or is Skilled (Climb) evolution a necessity? What about Str, is it just way too low to make the best use of ranged combat?


Mighty Glacier wrote:
How does Ranged Serp Azata's damage compare to its Biped Azata brother? Is the climb speed reliable enough to shoot arrows while attached to a wall or is Skilled (Climb) evolution a necessity? What about Str, is it just way too low to make the best use of ranged combat?

At level 2, if you take Ability Increase(Str), your dmg is -1 from a Biped. If you don't, you're -2. Your to hit scales linearly inverse to your damage loss, assuming the Ability Increase instead goes to Dex. In the long run, your damage is indistinguishable from a Biped of similar design. This is because the starting stat spread differential is obviated by the numerous stat increases you apply to the eidolon. In theory, if you ignore Str completely, you'll end up -2 damage but +2 hit, which seems worthwhile. This is all per shot.

Your climb speed grants a +8 bonus to climb checks in addition to Str + ranks. Taking Skilled(Climb) doesn't stack with this bonus, so you're locked to 8+ranks+Str. At level 1, assuming you take Climb as a class skill and sink a rank in, you'd be looking at a +13 without esoteric boosting. That gets you typical dungeon walls (DC 20) without rolling (you can take 10, even in combat.) Level 3 gets you rough surfaces like natural stone walls or brick walls. Level 5 gets you flight, well before level 8 where you can finally stand on the ceiling without rolling.

Kitty Princess Fluffikins of Fluffy Bunny Land is increasingly unhappy. Tears are forming as we 'speak.'


Marking for interest; this isn't yet on the Zenith Games Guide to the Guides.

I haven't seen the Unchained material yet -- are Eidolons still stuck with the same starting ability scores as with the original Summoner?

Also, why does the guide not list Master Summoner among the worthwhile PFS-banned archetypes?


UnArcaneElection wrote:
I haven't seen the Unchained material yet -- are Eidolons still stuck with the same starting ability scores as with the original Summoner?

Exact same sets of scores.


Mighty Glacier wrote:

Thanks, that means a lot to me.

Yes, I can see that people are starting to realize the potential of Serpentine Azatas, I'm very curious to see what kind of builds people will come up with for that one.

Added a Skill Eidolon section. I hope I got it right, I'm looking forward to hear your thoughts.

Pretty solid with the Skilldolon. I especially like your pitch. Personally I'm not a fan of skill boosting feats since they're really small bonuses (and your eidolon will never get the 10+ rank boost in PFS.) I find that mobility and sensory evolutions make a great way to boost your ally when you've used Skilled on all your key stuff. Int stat boosting with evolution points cuts to deeply into your pool, and your Int is an odd number so you can get a better return if you just slap your first stat point into that instead.

Example: A 6 HD Eidolon can easily have a climb speed, tremorsense, and Skilled in 3 key skills. (Stealth, Perception, and Disable Device are a great trio here) One more point to give it Skilled in UMD, letting it use wands/scrolls of Aram Zey's Focus to great effect, giving you the perfect scout and pocket rogue. Note that said scout can have Hellcat Stealth by then, and will likely have the numbers to overcome the -10 penalty. And if you went small sized on something like a Serpentine? Basically invisibility. It's how I play my current Eidolon in PFS, though I play the APG version so I have the evo points on hand for Flight instead, and I blew my early feats on Deft Hands/Alertness like a dork.

Note that Biped Skilldolons have enough power in their base stats that they can likely take Power Attack and cheaply max out max attacks (Claws work best, Bite if it's an odd number) and still be really effective in combat.

Other random idea: Serpentine Azata with Combat Reflexes, reach on their tail and Dervish Dance can be kind of interesting. Might pale in comparison to a classic Biped with maxed Claw attacks for raw DPR, but it definitely has style. Plus all the benefits of a high crit range (possibly adamantine) weapon. Though I suppose for less points/feats you could just Combat Reflexes with a polearm and use a tail for close range.


Rosc wrote:
Other random idea: Serpentine Azata with Combat Reflexes, reach on their tail and Dervish Dance can be kind of interesting. Might pale in comparison to a classic Biped with maxed Claw attacks for raw DPR, but it definitely has style. Plus all the benefits of a high crit range (possibly adamantine) weapon. Though I suppose for less points/feats you could just Combat Reflexes with a polearm and use a tail for close range.

+1 Agile Elven Branched Spear. Dex to hit and dmg with reach. Add on an Agile AoMF for your tail and you have a mono stat OppAtk machine. Probably start with Wpn Finesse at 1, Combat Reflexes at 3, then grab EWP at 6 when you can afford the super stick. Early on use reach with your tail, then dump the evo when you grab the pokey fighty stick. Or just ignore the pokey fighty stick and go all claw/tail. Might be worth becoming small size for more dexy goodness.


Here's a link to a scan of my proof sheet for my PFS summoner.

It contains the back end of the build, from stat allocation on the main summoner to feat selections over levels, to level by level evolution selections across the first 11 levels of play.

Not shown is:
my second character trait (still undecided. Might end up Gifted Adept for Mage Armor)
spell selections
gear (which I waxed on about upthread.)
racial selections. (half elf, Ancestral Arms(Heavy Repeating Crossbow) and Arcane Training)
skills (2 per level, max out Perception and UMD)


Mighty Glacier wrote:
It's the most ridiculous idea I've ever seen. So of course I included it. Thanks!

Awesome! You're welcome and thank you.

Shadow Lodge

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Added onto the Guide to the Guides


^Thanks. Will all of the Unchained classes get their own sub-sections?

Shadow Lodge

UnArcaneElection wrote:

^Thanks. Will all of the Unchained classes get their own sub-sections?

Hmm, haven't decided yet. I think this is the only unchained guide yet, but when a few more come in I might lump them into a separate "Unchained" section. Whatever works.


Question about Unchained and Summoners: Is anything broken if you use a partially Unchained Summoner, for instance, the Unchained Summoner spell list but with everything else staying original?


For inclusion in the guide, build stubs of the Archer Eidolon in the guide's format:

Archer Angelica Level 1
Subtype: Azata
Form: Biped
Evolutions (1): Scent
Feats: Point Blank Shot
AC: 13 (+2 natural, +1 Dex)
Attack: Longbow +2 (1d8) or Greatsword +4 (2d6+4)
Resist: electric 5

Archer Angelica Level 4
Subtype: Azata
Form: Biped
Evolutions (3):Ability Increase (Dex), Scent
Feats: Point Blank Shot, Precise Shot
AC: 16 (+4 natural, +2 Dex)
Attack: Masterwork Composite (+3 Str) Longbow +6 (1d8+3) or Greatsword +6 (2d6+4)
Resist: electric 5, cold 10, fire 10
Costly equipment assumed: Masterwork Composite (+3 Str) Longbow [700 gp]

Archer Angelica Level 6
Subtype: Azata
Form: Biped
Evolutions (5): Ability Increase(Dex)x2, Scent
Feats: Point Blank Shot, Precise Shot, Rapid Shot
AC: 20 (+6 natural, +4 Dex)
Attack: +1 Composite (+4 Str) Longbow +10 (1d8+5), or Rapid Shots +8/+8 (1d8+5) or Greatsword +9 (2d6+6)
Resist: electric 5, cold 10, fire 10
Costly equipment assumed: +1 Composite (+4 Str) longbow [2800 gp]

Given enough gold, the bow in the level 6 really ought to be a +1 Adaptive Composite Longbow, but I recognize it can be hard to justify an extra thousand gold in character wealth early on.


Neat Ideas. I'm poking one of my players into converting his Summoner to Unchained to try it out, but he's not sure what to make of it(still pretty new player). I'll point him to your guide. Side note: Unless I missed something in this thread, I'm pretty sure Manyshot doesn't work with crossbows. Even repeating ones. I'd have to double check though and I'm going to bed. :p


Cranky McDuff wrote:
Neat Ideas. I'm poking one of my players into converting his Summoner to Unchained to try it out, but he's not sure what to make of it(still pretty new player). I'll point him to your guide. Side note: Unless I missed something in this thread, I'm pretty sure Manyshot doesn't work with crossbows. Even repeating ones. I'd have to double check though and I'm going to bed. :p

You are not wrong. If you stick with the repeater, skip Manyshot. Alternatively, bracers of archery grant bow proficiency and since none of your prior feats are crossbow specific (no rapid reload, for example) you can pick them up, swap to a composite bow and grab Manyshot. Call it a minor build fork. My build intends to grab something like Improved Initiative or something in Manyshot's place.


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Pathfinder Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Fast Healing gets bad marks but I've kind of looked at that ability not as a strength in combat, but as a way to insure that you have a fresh eidolon for each combat. Because they don't heal normal fast healing gives them a way to recover. Maybe at higher levels the resources to heal them up is negligible or those extra evolution points are that much more useful somewhere else; I can't say. It might still be a bad choice, but I think you're looking at what it's purpose is wrong.


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Hey there, Glacier. Figured I'd chip in with an example of a skill focused Eidolon using your own format, modified for the situation of course. It should go without mention that Summoners who employ this type of Eidolon should rely in their powerful Spell-Like Summoning for combat.

I really wanted to go with something that diverges from my Azata hype, since a high dex serpentine with free arms and a climb speed is just too darn good for a scout. But I'll go with a more balanced Air Elemental because it's skills are still great and the extra evolution point is very welcome. Plus the comparatively better strength means it's still a decent combatant if you cheaply max out its max attacks with claws. Maybe an Agile AoMF if you want an adorable buzzsaw.

But seriously Azatas are just so amazing for pretty much everything except Murderous Pouncebeasts it's not even funny.

1st Level
Swiss Army Eidolon
Subtype: Elemental, Air
Form: Biped, small
Evolutions (1): Skilled (Perception)
Feats: Skill Focus (Stealth)
Skills: Perception +12, Stealth + 13, Disable Device +6, Use Magic Device +4

4th Level
Swiss Army Eidolon
Subtype: Elemental, Air
Form: Biped, small
Evolutions (4): Skilled (Stealth, Perception, Disable Device, Use Magic Device)
Feats: Skill Focus (Stealth), Weapon Finesse
Skills: Perception +14, Stealth + 23, Disable Device +16, Use Magic Device +14

8th Level
Swiss Army Eidolon
Subtype: Elemental, Air
Form: Biped, small
Evolutions (7): Ability Increase (Dexterity), Perfect Flight (Free), Skilled (Use Magic Device, Stealth, Perception, Disable Device, Slight of Hand)
Feats: Skill Focus (Stealth), Weapon Finesse, Hellcat Stealth
Skills: Perception +17, Stealth + 28, Disable Device +21, Use Magic Device +17, Fly +18, Slight of Hand +20
(Ability Increase went into Int, giving it one more skill point per HD. One rank went into Fly, the other five went into Slight of Hand)

Scarab Sages

Updated. Changes:

  • Added the sample builds for Archer Azata and Skilldolon. Thanks Ryzoken and Rosc!
  • I noticed that I had forgotten the fact that some subtypes don't get access to all natural attacks, so Subtypes section is now revamped. Notably, angel is a little worse than I originally thought (it's now green) and psychopomp is a bit better now compared to others (green now).

Slaine777 wrote:
Fast Healing gets bad marks but I've kind of looked at that ability not as a strength in combat, but as a way to insure that you have a fresh eidolon for each combat. Because they don't heal normal fast healing gives them a way to recover. Maybe at higher levels the resources to heal them up is negligible or those extra evolution points are that much more useful somewhere else; I can't say. It might still be a bad choice, but I think you're looking at what it's purpose is wrong.

That would be using 4 evolution points at 11th level for out-of-combat healing. Unchained Summoner cannot afford such luxuries with its limited evolution pool. Just get more CLW wands and call it a day.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Alternately, if your eidolon has feat, grab some boots of the earth. (5000 gp(?), fast healing 1, but you have to stand still for it to work.)


Mighty Glacier wrote:

Updated. Changes:

  • Added the sample builds for Archer Azata and Skilldolon. Thanks Ryzoken and Rosc!
  • I noticed that I had forgotten the fact that some subtypes don't get access to all natural attacks, so Subtypes section is now revamped. Notably, angel is a little worse than I originally thought (it's now green) and psychopomp is a bit better now compared to others (green now).

Thanks for including my suggestion! And yeah, the available natural weapons totally adjusts the value of some subtypes. Good call on that.

On that note, I think Slam attacks should be more of a green thing, maybe even yellow, considering their a 1.5 strength mod attack under the right situations but that's about all you're getting from it. Bite, meanwhile, lets you boost it with other things such as Trip and Grab, plus it doesn't take up your valuable limbs to operate, AND it can be boosted to have the 1.5 strength damage even if it's not the only attack on your Eidolon. Bite also deals all three types of damage (B, S, and P) to deal with those pesky early level DRs.

If anything, Bite should be the blue one when you compare the two.

Scarab Sages

Rosc wrote:
Mighty Glacier wrote:

Updated. Changes:

  • Added the sample builds for Archer Azata and Skilldolon. Thanks Ryzoken and Rosc!
  • I noticed that I had forgotten the fact that some subtypes don't get access to all natural attacks, so Subtypes section is now revamped. Notably, angel is a little worse than I originally thought (it's now green) and psychopomp is a bit better now compared to others (green now).

Thanks for including my suggestion! And yeah, the available natural weapons totally adjusts the value of some subtypes. Good call on that.

On that note, I think Slam attacks should be more of a green thing, maybe even yellow, considering their a 1.5 strength mod attack under the right situations but that's about all you're getting from it. Bite, meanwhile, lets you boost it with other things such as Trip and Grab, plus it doesn't take up your valuable limbs to operate, AND it can be boosted to have the 1.5 strength damage even if it's not the only attack on your Eidolon. Bite also deals all three types of damage (B, S, and P) to deal with those pesky early level DRs.

If anything, Bite should be the blue one when you compare the two.

I think Slam is still blue-worthy. Every subtype gets it, d8 damage and doesn't take require any body parts (though it has limits of taking it as many times as you have arm limbs). No downsides and all good things.

Bite does borderline blue, but I think it's still a little inferior to slam. Like Slam, Bite doesn't require body parts (though it has a limit of 1) but has a little less damage. When damage is all you care about, slam > bite. Trip and grab don't really contribute to the damage output, unless you're making a constrict eidolon or something.

Oh, and the early DR point is valid. Though I don't expect anyone to have problems with, say, zombies (DR 5/slashing), since most natural attack-based eidolons have claws (B and S).

Bite is still in the top 3 of natural attacks and the guide makes this pretty clear.


Has anyone else noticed that at level 1, the eidolon only has 1 HP? Am I doing something wrong?

Scarab Sages

Jef Zwetz wrote:
Has anyone else noticed that at level 1, the eidolon only has 1 HP? Am I doing something wrong?

You are doing something wrong.

1d10+1 = 6

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

assuming you are using average +0.5 as you would for any other character, shouldn't that be 7?


The default is to truncate decimals, or round down.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber, Cards, Companion, Maps, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Couple of rules issues with your guide -

First, for eidolon as mounts builds I think it's important to point out that NONE of the good aligned subtypes can actually take the mount evolution, because mount is limited to Daemon, demon, devil, elemental or protean. Once you add in the base form restrictions that excludes devil as well, and then alignment restrictions will likely mean that the majority of players will be shoehorned into elemental for this build.

Also, because Rake requires quadruped base form several of the subtypes you have it listed for (angel, archon, azata) actually can't take it - it is more or less impossible to build those subtypes as natural attackers as a result.

Finally, I'm not sure you will get away with the assertion that slam doesn't require the use of the arms. I get where the RAW argument is, but I think that this is one of those things that would end up varying from table to table, so probably should be caveated as such.

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as FAQ candidate.
MrTsFloatinghead wrote:


First, for eidolon as mounts builds I think it's important to point out that NONE of the good aligned subtypes can actually take the mount evolution, because mount is limited to Daemon, demon, devil, elemental or protean. Once you add in the base form restrictions that excludes devil as well, and then alignment restrictions will likely mean that the majority of players will be shoehorned into elemental for this build.

I strongly suspect that the writer of the feats section did not take into account that two of the good subtypes did have base forms that are eligible for the mount evolution, and may have come to the conclusion that since the Angel base can't take the feat, the other good base forms could not either.

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