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The Beginner's Guide to the NEW Master of Many Styles


Advice

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I did some work for Icy Turbo's Guide to picking archetypes (the thread for which can be found right here), specifically the Monk Archetypes. As part of that, I began trying to review the Master of Many Styles, and realized that the archetype is so different and so mechanics-heavy that it may need its own seperate guide.

I can't say that I've done a full pass at it, because there are a lot of idiosyncrasies to the archetype. Specifically, in order to max out the power of the archetype, you need to be able to go deeply into the Feat Chains for the Styles, and balancing prerequisites and the like is not a small thing.

I have made it through a first pass of rating the various styles in specific reference to how well they fit as part of the Master of Many Styles. It is NOT a formal Style Guide per se, as the MoMS has a number of quirks that make certain styles better for it than any other character. The biggest example is something like Jabbing Style, which is a powerful Style on its own, but is less effective for a MoMS due to the lack of Flurry of Blows.

The first pass at the Style Ratings and the like can be found right here. My next task is analyzing how best to implement the style. For example,

  • Is it worth it to go for two Styles at Level One, particularly when the only Styles that one can take this way at first level are Snapping Turtle Style, Panther Style (if human), Cudgeler Style (if human), and Crane Style (if human)?
  • Which styles have prerequisites that are commonly shared, thus making it easier to go up the Feat Chain?
  • Which Styles have complementary abilities, generalizing the possible things the Style can do as Offensive To-Hit, Offensive Damage, Additional Attacks, Additional Defense, and Other Bonuses (such as Marid Style's increased Reach, or Overslug Styles 10' steps)?

What are people's thoughts on the Style Ratings? Are these good questions to take the time to analyze? Is there anything else I should think of? Any thoughts on formatting (as it is kind of in "brain dump" mode right now).


Which styles compliment each other and which ones are impossible to use effectively at the same time? Such as two styles using swift actions a lot.


Outslug style can help Jabbing style to maximize its full attack uptime with 10' steps and lunge in the mix


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It might be worthwhile taking a brief wider view of the class. How does the Master of Many Styles Monk compare to the vanilla Monk? The Zen Archer Monk? The Brawler? The Animal Companion?


Marking for interest. Read the 1st pass -- needs some cleaning up (in particular, why do some of the style feats appear twice in a row?), but cool.


It's not just what can be taken on turn 1. One of the things about the master of many styles it is a very popular dip. Which means other questions enter into play.

Do you have Flurry of Blows?
Are you a weapon user?
Do you have a free hand?
Ext.

EDIT A: For example, marking all of Spear style as horrible makes no sense if you are a lance user who wants to be effective off your mount with the same heavily enchanted weapon. Or if you happen to have pounce.

EDIT 2: Not all styles you need two feats from. For example, Tiger Claws is horrible with some builds, but Tiger Pounce is so amazing it's often worth getting.


Ryan Freire wrote:
Outslug style can help Jabbing style to maximize its full attack uptime with 10' steps and lunge in the mix

Good idea. I think it may be an idea to come up with some general labels about what the Styles provide so that people can easily find synergies. I'm thinking of categories of #Attacks, Damage, ToHit, Movement, and then Other for things like Marid Style's Reach and Overwatch Style's multiple readied attacks.

GM Arkwright wrote:
It might be worthwhile taking a brief wider view of the class. How does the Master of Many Styles Monk compare to the vanilla Monk? The Zen Archer Monk? The Brawler? The Animal Companion?

I might need to outsource that analysis, or at the least wait until I have a more in-depth analysis.

After doing the first pass through of the Monk class for the Archetype project, I realized that it's folly to use a single archetype with a Monk. I started a project creating what I'm calling "Hybrid Archetypes", which would be thematic combinations of archetypes, such as The Peaceful Sensei aka Mr. Miyagi(Ki Mystic/Monk of the Lotus/Sensei) or The Wrestler (Kata Master/Tetori). This lead to writing the MoMS Guide, so that I can properly figure out how to integrate MoMS into the Hybrids.

All of that is to say that I'm so deep in the Monk weeds trying to make it easier to design Non-Crappy Monks that I may need outside help with the stuff that doesn't involve making Non-Crappy Monks.

UnArcaneElection wrote:

Marking for interest. Read the 1st pass -- needs some cleaning up (in particular, why do some of the style feats appear twice in a row?), but cool.

Yeah, this was a huge brain dump. I hope to get a runthrough to at least make this worthy of a "beta" designation today.

The Mortonator wrote:

It's not just what can be taken on turn 1. One of the things about the master of many styles it is a very popular dip. Which means other questions enter into play.

Do you have Flurry of Blows?
Are you a weapon user?
Do you have a free hand?
Ext.

EDIT A: For example, marking all of Spear style as horrible makes no sense if you are a lance user who wants to be effective off your mount with the same heavily enchanted weapon. Or if you happen to have pounce.

EDIT 2: Not all styles you need two feats from. For example, Tiger Claws is horrible with some builds, but Tiger Pounce is so amazing it's often worth getting.

I'm guessing you haven't heard. Sit down, for you are about to mourn the loss of MoMS as you know it. MoMS has been errated; here is my summary of the post-errata MoMS:

Spoiler:

The Master of Many Styles isn't the easiest of archetypes to use, but it is highly versatile. Your first two Bonus Feats must be spent on Style Feats, which are specifically defined as the FIRST Feat in a Style Tree. The 6th, 10th, 14th, and 18th feats may be spent on a Style Feat, Elemental Fist, or a Wildcard Feat. The Wildcard Feats are the most interesting, as they let you sub in a higher feat in the Style Tree of any Style you are using as long as you meet the prerequisites. As you rise in level, you meet more prerequisites and have more options with your Wildcard feats.

So the "dip" version of MoMS that people loved is gone. No more getting the Feats early; you now must meet all prerequisites for everything beyond the first Feat. So, if you want to get Tiger Pounce, you must buy Power Attack, you must wait until Lvl 8, and you HAVE to buy Tiger Claws, since that is a prerequisite for Tiger Pounce. Note that not all Styles act in this manner; you don't need Dragon Ferocity for Dragon Roar or Pummeling Bully for Pummeling Charge. However, these are by far exceptions, not the rule.

As well, I'm limiting my analysis to ONLY the MoMS, and since Monks can't use Spears... :( What would you rate that style; I do want to add a note of "Lance/Spear users that aren't MoMS would rate this as <blah>". However, this is a MASTER OF MANY STYLES guide, not a Style Guide...

... at least, not yet.

Sovereign Court

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Oh - big thing - don't forget to mention how amazing Tengu are for MoMS Dex builds. Not only do they have stats in the right places, but having 3 bonus nat attacks is awesome. A normal monk can't use them when they full attack due to flurry, but the MoMS loses flurry anyway, so they're just gravy.

Get a Tengu MoMS with TWF and you can have 5 swings at level 1. (Admittedly - damage is weak until they grab an Agile AoMF.)


Charon's Little Helper wrote:

Oh - big thing - don't forget to mention how amazing Tengu are for MoMS Dex builds. Not only do they have stats in the right places, but having 3 bonus nat attacks is awesome. A normal monk can't use them when they full attack due to flurry, but the MoMS loses flurry anyway, so they're just gravy.

Get a Tengu MoMS with TWF and you can have 5 swings at level 1. (Admittedly - damage is weak until they grab an Agile AoMF.)

That does seem pretty good, particularly if you go with the Multi-hit Styles like Boar Style. That said, how do you get up to five attacks? Two Weapon Fighting only modifies interative attacks, not natural weapons. I understand they are considered Unarmed Strikes for the purpose of qualifying for Feats, but that doesn't change the type of attack that they are.

Scarab Sages

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Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber

The tengu attack routine is Unarmed Strike(kick)/Off-hand Unamred Strike(kick)/Claw/Claw/Bite.

It's -2/-2/-5/-5/-5, but it's still five attacks at first level.

Paizo Employee Designer

Removed a series of flagged posts. Let's take rules debates over to the rules subforum. I appreciate that posters who saw what looked like incorrect advice posted in an advice/guide thread that new players might read wanted to set the record straight, but this isn't the thread's purpose.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber

Sorry to get dragged into the rules debate. I was posting while Chess Pwn posted the request to take it out of the thread, and then had stopped. I was just trying to help out a guide discussion to keep the advice correct.


Imbicatus wrote:

Sorry to get dragged into the rules debate. I was posting while Chess Pwn posted the request to take it out of the thread, and then had stopped. I was just trying to help out a guide discussion to keep the advice correct.

I do appreciate the assistance.

It's going to take me a while to fully update the ratings (longer than I thought), but I am adding general categories for the Styles as well as notes on variations. Again... I appreciate any help and insight I can get, particularly for applications of the Styles among non-MoMS Monks.

I did make sure to give Tengu a blue rating for Boar Style as a result of this convo. :)


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Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Why is Boar style good for Tengu? Boar only triggers with unarmed strikes, so I don't see the synergy.


Chess Pwn wrote:
Why is Boar style good for Tengu? Boar only triggers with unarmed strikes, so I don't see the synergy.

Nuts. Good catch. This is one reason why I wasn't going into depth on the non-core races. I'm glad this was caught before I updated the other Styles.

So... I'll be sticking to the Core races until I finish. :)


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Imbicatus wrote:
Sorry to get dragged into the rules debate. I was posting while Chess Pwn posted the request to take it out of the thread, and then had stopped.

Just because my advice is the opposite of yours does not make it appropriate that it should be censored, though.

Imbicatus wrote:
I was posting while Chess Pwn posted the request to take it out of the thread... I was just trying to help out a guide discussion to keep the advice correct.

It seems you agree with me there: contrary ideas should be discussed and not squelched.

Mark Seifter Designer wrote:
Let's take rules debates over to the rules subforum. I appreciate that posters who saw what looked like incorrect advice posted in an advice/guide thread that new players might read wanted to set the record straight, but this isn't the thread's purpose.

It's problematic to never refer to the rules when discussing differing advice. We are giving advice about how to play a game, after all, and games are made out of rules.

I will try very hard not to derail the thread--any thread, and perhaps my language initially was a little harsh. But surely you don't mean that we can't ever support the legitimacy of the advice we give by referring to the rules.

Mark Seifter Designer wrote:
Let's take rules debates over to the rules subforum.

I am very open to civilized discourse on this subject on any forum you please. If someone wants to link to another thread for continuing this argument, I am willing to take this debate there.


I have to say that I was very upset by recent changes to the Master of Many Styles description. I really enjoyed being able to take Snake Fang after only 2 levels in MOMS Monk, and I felt very discourged at the idea of playing another one.

The Bonus Feats only allow you to take more Style Feats, and only the initial Feat in each Style Feat Tree is actually a Style Feat.

I hope you can find some cool MOMS builds and make a believer out of me again.

Paizo Employee Designer

Removed a pair of posts continuing the rules argument. If there's not a thread yet, feel free to make a new one, but it isn't an excuse to argue rules in an advice thread. "My advice is <opinion in the rules argument>" is still the same rules argument, not advice. As always, if you have any questions about moderation, don't hesitate to contact us via e-mail.


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Ah, no, I had no heard about the rules change.

Not that I believe that precludes taking MoMS as a dip. It's obviously much worse early game, but getting a second style is always nice.


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Scott Wilhelm wrote:

I have to say that I was very upset by recent changes to the Master of Many Styles description. I really enjoyed being able to take Snake Fang after only 2 levels in MOMS Monk, and I felt very discourged at the idea of playing another one.

The Bonus Feats only allow you to take more Style Feats, and only the initial Feat in each Style Feat Tree is actually a Style Feat.

I hope you can find some cool MOMS builds and make a believer out of me again.

If you want something like that, I'm probably going to disappoint you. The scenario you are describing is the exact scenario that the errata sought to avoid. There will be no more quick fixes... no more Pummeling Charge at Level 2.

On the other hand, the Hybrid Archetype I was working on that inspired me to do this analysis was an idea I call the Bloody Ghost Monk, a Hungry Ghost / Master of Many Styles (Boar, Panther, Snake) that has a recommended substitution of Truestrike and Scorching Ray for Slow Fall and High Jump. It really comes online at Level 9, when Snake Fang kicks in, but the idea is to use a combination of attacks of opportunity and retributive strikes to cause flesh tears and bleed damage. This is to help make the Monk the cause behind a killing blow, which can then be used to get more ki.

I dunno about the efficiency of the mechanics, but I think the idea is cool.

The Mortonator wrote:

Ah, no, I had no heard about the rules change.

Not that I believe that precludes taking MoMS as a dip. It's obviously much worse early game, but getting a second style is always nice.

Hmmm... that's true. Not a lot of ways to get multiple Styles, and for a Brawler a single level that lets them have, say, Pummeling and Jabbing styles would be pretty darned handy.


Charon's Little Helper wrote:

Oh - big thing - don't forget to mention how amazing Tengu are for MoMS Dex builds. Not only do they have stats in the right places, but having 3 bonus nat attacks is awesome. A normal monk can't use them when they full attack due to flurry, but the MoMS loses flurry anyway, so they're just gravy.

Get a Tengu MoMS with TWF and you can have 5 swings at level 1. (Admittedly - damage is weak until they grab an Agile AoMF.)

I think that Tengu with Claws and Bite or maybe a dip into Alchemist with the Feral Mutagen is a very good way to go and can be more than an offset against the loss of Flurry of Blows. I don't think there are any significant problems with that.

As to the poor damage, even a 1 level dip into Warpriest of 1 level can go a ways to fix that, replacing your Claw Damage with Sacred Weapon Damage: 1d6 at level 1 for every attack you take Weapon Focus for. Take the Minor Blessing of Destruction, and all your attacks do an extra +1.

1 level in Ranger with the Freebooter Archetype will increase your attack and damage rolls globally by +1.

Another way to increase your damage globally for all your attacks is with Sneak Attack Damage. 1 level in Rogue or Ninja, 1 level in Snakebite Striker Brawler, the Accomplished Sneak Attacker Feat, and your Sneak Attacks are up to 3d6. To lock in Sneak Attack Damage, you might use the Dirty Tricks Combat Maneuvers, the Ninja Vanishing Trick, or take a 1 level dip in Arcanist. You can achieve Flanking with the Dimensional Hop Ability and get Sneak Attack Damage that way. Take Sap Adept and Bludgeoner, and you get a sizable increase on most of your your attacks.

Or take Hamatula Strike: a free grapple with every hit with a piercing weapon, such as Bite, Gore (get a Helm of the Mammoth Lord). With Snake Style, your Unarmed Strikes count as piercing weapons. With Feral Combat Training, your Claws gain the benefit of Snake Style, and they count as Piercing, too. Since MOMS Monks don't get Flurry anyway, they can wear Armor with Spikes, and do Armor Spike Damage with every Grapple. And since the Grapple is a separate attack, it--the Armor Spikes--gets Sneak Attack Damage too! You could also take 1 level in White Haired Witch: the Hair Attack does not benefit from Hamatula Strike, but it has a sort of Grab Feature of its own and will stack neatly with Armor Spikes.

It probably wouldn't make sense to take Sap Adept and Hamatula Strike in the same Character: they wouldn't stack. But between Claws, Bite, Gore, Hair, and Unarmed Strikes with several Attacks of Opportunity/round with Snake Fang augmented by Grab and Hamatula Strike or Sap Adept, your DPR can get shockingly high.

I mentioned the Feral Mutagen. Vivisectionist Alchemist also has a Sneak Attack Feature, and the Dex Mutagen will increase the number of Attacks of Opportunity Snake Fang would give you, both because your Dex Mod affects Combat Reflexes and because increased Dex and the Natural Armor Bonus make it more likely for you to be missed in melee combat, which is what triggers Snake Fang in the first place. One problem with the Dex Mutagen is that it raises your Dex at the cost of your Wisdom, so that is not so good if you are using Both Snake and Panther styles. In that case you would probably be better with the Strength Mutagen or Dragon Style for the St Damage Bonuses, which again, apply to all those Natural Attacks.

While you are at it, with even 1 level of Alchemist, you can cast (Extract) Shield or use it as a Wand, which would come in handy if you want both hands for your Claw Attacks.

The Alchemal Tentacle doesn't give you extra attacks: you'd be attacking with the Tentacle in lieu of any Unarmed Strikes, but it is still a Tentacle, and therefore clearly a Natural Weapon, which some people might feel offers an advantage in some circumstances. And it still gives you a +4 on all your Grapple Checks, which you can use as I described above.

Bear in mind that these are a lot of different directions one might take a character. I'm not proposing 1 character build, here. All this stuff doesn't fit into 1 character: I've tried!


JAMRenaissance wrote:
If you want something like that, I'm probably going to disappoint you. The scenario you are describing is the exact scenario that the errata sought to avoid. There will be no more quick fixes... no more Pummeling Charge at Level 2.

:(

JAMRenaissance wrote:

On the other hand, the Hybrid Archetype I was working on that inspired me to do this analysis was an idea I call the Bloody Ghost Monk, a Hungry Ghost / Master of Many Styles (Boar, Panther, Snake)... It really comes online at Level 9, when Snake Fang kicks in, but the idea is to use a combination of attacks of opportunity and retributive strikes to cause flesh tears and bleed damage. This is to help make the Monk the cause behind a killing blow, which can then be used to get more ki.

I dunno about the efficiency of the mechanics, but I think the idea is cool.

IIIIII'm Listening!!!!

JAMRenaissance wrote:
that has a recommended substitution of Truestrike and Scorching Ray

So, Quinngong Hungry Ghost Master of Many Styles? And, by the way, a little off topic, but I was thinking about Ninja Vanishing Trick and Scorching Ray. And I was thinking about doing that more with a Drunken Quinngong Master of Many Styles. Maybe take the Potion Glutton Feat so you can Drink as a Swift Action. And you'll be wanting a Ring of Ki Mastery, or take the Extra Ki Feat. Anyway, then you'll be making Ranged Touch Attacks vs. Flatfooted AC, + Sneak Attack Damage, which has been on my mind a lot, lately.


(I hope this wasn't what the rules discussion was about)

Would free-style fighter's level 3 ability stack with the reworked MoMS 1st level ability?

As in, could MoMS 1/Free-style fighter 3 would have 3 stances, right? Would net you +1 to attack once he hits MoMS 8 too.

It's not a bad dip anyway, since it has martial flexibility right away, which could be good to pick up style feats, and then you can use the MoMS "joker" styles for those.


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Scott Wilhelm wrote:
So, Quinngong Hungry Ghost Master of Many Styles?

All (chained) monks should be assumed to be Qinggong by default, since the archetype costs you absolutely nothing and even if you don't have any swaps planned, all it does is give you the option to swap if you want to. The odds are pretty good that you're not going to get much use out of high jump and slow fall, at the very least.

Archetypes that cost nothing and simply give you options should always be taken 100% of the time. I think we can interpret the "0-cost archetype" as simply a patch for the class.


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Outslug Sprint and Outslug Weave both require Lunge as a prerequisite, which means you can't take either until level 6.


My Self wrote:
Outslug Sprint and Outslug Weave both require Lunge as a prerequisite, which means you can't take either until level 6.

Wouldn't it be Level 8, since that's when it would hit +6/+1 (which also makes the chain male a touch more sense)?

That does suck, as you can't get it by the first wild card...


PossibleCabbage wrote:
Scott Wilhelm wrote:
So, Quinngong Hungry Ghost Master of Many Styles?

All (chained) monks should be assumed to be Qinggong by default, since the archetype costs you absolutely nothing and even if you don't have any swaps planned, all it does is give you the option to swap if you want to. The odds are pretty good that you're not going to get much use out of high jump and slow fall, at the very least.

Archetypes that cost nothing and simply give you options should always be taken 100% of the time. I think we can interpret the "0-cost archetype" as simply a patch for the class.

For the purpose of my guides, I'm looking at Qinggong simply as a way of making the class abilities "Monk Tricks" ala the Rogue, and planning accordingly.


Imbicatus wrote:

The tengu attack routine is Unarmed Strike(kick)/Off-hand Unamred Strike(kick)/Claw/Claw/Bite.

It's -2/-2/-5/-5/-5, but it's still five attacks at first level.

Even if you are dealing with a GM who feels entitled to impose a -5 penalty, all you have to do is take Multiattack, knocking the -5 to a -2, and you are back in business.

If you are talking PFS, you can't take Multiattack normally, but you can take a level in Brawler and use Martial Flexibility to gain the Benefit of Multiattack, and you are back in business.

For certain builds, you'd want to do that anyway. For instance, if you have a Druidzilla character who turns into a Giant Octopus, all those Tentacle Attacks are already Secondary Natural Attacks. Adding some Manufactured Weapon Attacks (in the way that one does, when one is an octopus!) isn't going to make the Secondary Natural Attacks Tertiary.


Scott:

I noticed that the thing that separated the Zen Archer (and to a lesser extent, the Tetori) from other, less-viable archetypes was that it subbed out a large number of Monk class abilities for a set of abilities that is both thematically solid and mechanically in sync.The basic idea of a "Hybrid Archetype" is to combine multiple Monk archetypes in a thematically related manner to create a "new" archetype that is more viable than the Basic Monk and more like the Zen Archer. As I was writing ideas for that, I hit the snag on Master of Many Styles, which is what prompted trying to finish this guide before I continue. As you can see from the recommended Feats, the new MoMS is Feat heavy and complex if you want to be able to get to the "Good stuff" at higher levels; this is actually a comparatively painless example, as the only required Feat from the Styles I chose was Combat Reflexes.

So, basically, it goes like this: Come up with a theme-based combo. Copy and paste the archetypes into a document. Change the names from the original to the "Hybrid" name. Add in any recommended notes ala the recommendations for Rogue Talents. You have a "new" Archetype that is PFS compatible because it isn't anything "new".

Here is what I mean:

Bloody Ghost Monk (Hungry Ghost/Master of Many Styles)
A threat even among her near-vampiric brethren, the Bloody Ghost focuses her studies on finding ways amass strike after strike to deliver the killing blow in order to feed her thirst for ki.

Spoiler:

Punishing Kick (Ex)

At 1st level, a bloody ghost monk gains Punishing Kick as a bonus feat, even if he does not meet the prerequisites. At 10th level, and every five levels thereafter, the monk can push the target of his Punishing Kick an additional 5 feet (10 feet at 10th level, 15 feet at 15th level, and 20 feet at 20th level). At 15th level, he can instead choose to push the target 5 feet and knock the target prone with the same attack. The target still gets a saving throw to avoid being knocked prone.

This ability replaces stunning fist.

Bonus Feat

At 1st level, 2nd level, and every four levels thereafter, a bloody ghost monk may select a bonus style feat or the Elemental Fist feat. He does not need to meet the prerequisites of that feat, except the Elemental Fist feat. Starting at 6th level, a bloody ghost monk can choose to instead gain a wildcard style slot. Whenever he enters one or more styles, he can spend his wildcard style slots to gain feats in those styles’ feat paths (such as Earth Child Topple) as long as he meets the prerequisites. Each time he changes styles, he can also change these wildcard style slots.

This ability replaces a monk’s standard bonus feats.

Fuse Style (Ex)

At 1st level, a bloody ghost monk can fuse two of the styles he knows into a more perfect style. The bloody ghost monk can have two style feat stances active at once. Starting a stance provided by a style feat is still a swift action, but when the bloody ghost monk switches to another style feat, he can choose one style whose stance is already active to persist. He may only have two style feat stances active at a time.

At 8th level, the bloody ghost monk can fuse three styles at once. He can have the stances of three style feats active at the same time. He gains a bonus on attack rolls equal to the number of styles whose stances he currently has active. Furthermore, he can enter up to three stances as a swift action.

At 15th level, the bloody ghost monk can fuse four styles at once. He can have the stances of four style feats active at the same time. Furthermore, he can enter up to four stances as a free action by spending 1 point from his ki pool.

This ability replaces flurry of blows.

Steal Ki (Ex)

At 5th level, a bloody ghost monk can steal ki from other creatures, though this ability is controversial in some circles of monks, who see it as nothing less than a form of vampirism. If the monk scores a confirmed critical hit against a living enemy or reduces a living enemy to 0 or fewer hit points, he can steal some of that creature’s ki. This ability replenishes 1 spent ki point to the monk’s ki pool, as long as the monk has at least 1 ki point in his pool. He cannot exceed his ki pool’s maximum. At 11th level, each time the monk successfully steals ki, he can make an immediate saving throw against one disease he is suffering from. There is no penalty for failing this saving throw. The monk gains a bonus equal to his Wisdom modifier on the saving throw.

This ability replaces purity of body.

Life Funnel (Su)

At 7th level, a bloody ghost monk can steal a creature’s life force to replenish his own. If the monk has at least 1 ki point in his ki pool and scores a confirmed critical hit against a living enemy or reduces a living enemy to 0 or fewer hit points, he heals a number of hit points equal to his monk level. As with steal ki, some monks believe that life funnel is an unsavory act, no better than what the undead do to the living. A monk with this ability cannot steal both ki and hit points at the same time.

This ability replaces wholeness of body.

Life from a Stone (Su)

At 11th level, a bloody ghost monk can steal ki or life force from any creature, not just living creatures. If the monk has at least 1 ki point in his pool, he gains the benefit of life funnel and steal ki when he confirms a critical hit against any creature or reduces any creature to 0 or fewer hit points.

This ability replaces diamond body.

Sipping Demon (Su)

A 13th level, a bloody ghost monk gains 1 temporary hit point each time he hits an enemy with a melee attack. The monk gains a number of temporary hit points equal to his Wisdom modifier when he scores a critical hit. The maximum number of temporary hit points the monk can have is equal to his monk level. The temporary hit points disappear 1 hour later. The monk can only use this ability when he has at least 1 ki point in his ki pool. This ability is a proscribed manipulation of ki considered by many good monks to be a corruption.

The ability replaces diamond soul.

Perfect Style (Ex)

At 20th level, a bloody ghost monk can have the stances of five style feats active at once, and can change those stances as a free action.

This ability replaces perfect self.

The following Feat selections complement the Bloody Ghost:

  • Lvl 1: Combat Reflexes
  • Lvl 1 Bonus: Boar Style
  • Lvl 2 Bonus: Panther Style
  • Lvl 3: Panther Claw
  • Lvl 5: Snake Style
  • Lvl 6 Bonus: Wildcard
  • Lvl 7: Snake Sidewind
  • Lvl 10 Bonus: Wildcard

The following Qinggong substitutions complement the Bloody Ghost:

  • Truestrike for Slow Fall
  • Scorching Ray for High Jump

Sovereign Court

Scott Wilhelm wrote:


As to the poor damage, even a 1 level dip into Warpriest of 1 level can go a ways to fix that, replacing your Claw Damage with Sacred Weapon Damage: 1d6 at level 1 for every attack you take Weapon Focus for.

It's not the dice that makes the damage low - it's the lack of static damage. A Dex monk should have a STR of 10 at most (maybe even 7 if you're starting at level 4 and with the AoMF), so they'd be at +0 at most. However, with a Dex of 18, with the Agile AoMF they'll all get a +2, with the primary unarmed attack getting +4. More as your Dex goes up, not to mention any straight enhancement you put on it.

It really isn't worth the warpriest dip just for +1.5 damage with all that you lose (accuracy/hp/skills/ki/class abilities etc.) even if you DO take WF with claws and bite. (You probably shouldn't bother with WF for them anyway as monks are pretty strapped for feats - especially the bite with only a single attack per round.)

The guide might also make note that this build is especially useful in a party with a bard due to all of the extra static damage Inspire Courage adds, and how the bard helps make up for the build's accuracy issues. (True of all monks really - just moreso with this one since it has even more swings.)


JAMRenaissance wrote:
Bloody Ghost Monk (Hungry Ghost/Master of Many Styles)

Cool, like Quinngong Drunken Master of Many Styles.

It reminds me of a movie I saw: Interview with the Army of the 12 Vampire Monkeys of Darkness.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber
Scott Wilhelm wrote:
Imbicatus wrote:

The tengu attack routine is Unarmed Strike(kick)/Off-hand Unamred Strike(kick)/Claw/Claw/Bite.

It's -2/-2/-5/-5/-5, but it's still five attacks at first level.

Even if you are dealing with a GM who feels entitled to impose a -5 penalty, all you have to do is take Multiattack, knocking the -5 to a -2, and you are back in business.

If you are talking PFS, you can't take Multiattack normally, but you can take a level in Brawler and use Martial Flexibility to gain the Benefit of Multiattack, and you are back in business.

For certain builds, you'd want to do that anyway. For instance, if you have a Druidzilla character who turns into a Giant Octopus, all those Tentacle Attacks are already Secondary Natural Attacks. Adding some Manufactured Weapon Attacks (in the way that one does, when one is an octopus!) isn't going to make the Secondary Natural Attacks Tertiary.

In PFS you still can't use martial flexibility to gain multiattack, as it's not a legal feat. To use martial flexibility, you must have the book the feat appears in, and you cannot take feats from the Bestairy without it being specifically granted by another source.


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Scott Wilhelm wrote:
JAMRenaissance wrote:
Bloody Ghost Monk (Hungry Ghost/Master of Many Styles)

Cool, like Quinngong Drunken Master of Many Styles.

It reminds me of a movie I saw: Interview with the Army of the 12 Vampire Monkeys of Darkness.

Thanks, though admittedly I've been second-guessing the Feat order ever since I hit "Submit Post". The thought is to use Panther Style and Snake Style to generate attacks of opportunity that trigger Boar Style's Flesh Tear for extra damage. The more times you do extra damage, the more likely you'll drop the opponent to 0 and be able to steal their ki.

With that in mind... I'm still second guessing the order of the Feats.

This does also illustrate another aspect of MoMS; it is INCREDIBLY easier to pull off if you are Human. This example is the exact example of being able to pull off two Styles at Level One, since a human CAN take Panther Style at first level as a regular Feat instead of as a bonus Feat, thus allowing you to take Boar Style first level and Snake Style second level as bonuses.


Charon's Little Helper wrote:
It really isn't worth the warpriest dip just for +1.5 damage with all that you lose (accuracy/hp/skills/ki/class abilities etc.) even if you DO take WF with claws and bite.

Maybe. I am just brainstorming here, and it does depend on what you are putting together.

But the 1 level dip in Warpriest gives more than 1.5. Remember, I was also recommending the Minor Blessing of Destruction, which gives a +1 Damage, so that's +2.5 Damage on the attacks you take Weapon Focus for and a +1 for all your other attacks.

As a Tengu, you need to take to Weapon Focus for each attack you want Sacred Weapon Damage for. If you were a Human who acquired Natural Attacks, you could take Martial Versatility Weapon Focus, and you get Weapon Focus for everything.

A Human can get Natural Attacks in a variety of ways. Helm of the Mammoth Lord gives a Gore Attack. Ring of Rat Fangs gives a Bite Attack. A Tentacle Cloak gives 2 Tentacle Attacks. 1 level in White Haired Witch gives you a Hair Attack. Levels in Animal Shaman Druid, or Alchemist can give both Claw and Bite Attacks. A couple more levels in Druid, and you are in Wildshape Country. Even 1 level in many of these classes will let you do things like use wands of Monstrous Physique and Beast Shape, and you can get lots of Natural Attacks that way. There are lots of options.

Martial Versatility can be applied to other Feats, too: Weapon Specialization, of course, but also Feral Combat Training, which will let you use Style Feats such as the Jabbing and Outslug style feats, gaining a +2 with every 5' Step, gaining a 5' step with every hit, and getting lots of hits every round: 1 Bite, 1 Gore, Hair, 2 Claws, and 2 Unarmed Strikes (with 2 Weapon Fighting), maybe even more if you take something like Panther Claw or Snake Fang.

Again, this is a lot to cram into 1 character, and I haven't formulated any coherent builds. I'm still just brainstorming.


JAMRenaissance wrote:
Scott Wilhelm wrote:
JAMRenaissance wrote:
Bloody Ghost Monk (Hungry Ghost/Master of Many Styles)

Cool, like Quinngong Drunken Master of Many Styles.

It reminds me of a movie I saw: Interview with the Army of the 12 Vampire Monkeys of Darkness.

Thanks, though admittedly I've been second-guessing the Feat order ever since I hit "Submit Post". The thought is to use Panther Style and Snake Style to generate attacks of opportunity that trigger Boar Style's Flesh Tear for extra damage. The more times you do extra damage, the more likely you'll drop the opponent to 0 and be able to steal their ki.

With that in mind... I'm still second guessing the order of the Feats.

This does also illustrate another aspect of MoMS; it is INCREDIBLY easier to pull off if you are Human. This example is the exact example of being able to pull off two Styles at Level One, since a human CAN take Panther Style at first level as a regular Feat instead of as a bonus Feat, thus allowing you to take Boar Style first level and Snake Style second level as bonuses.

As long as both Archetypes don't both replace the same Ability, you're good.

My concern with Hungry Ghost Monk is that it only scores on a Crit or a Kill, and Unarmed Strikes only Threaten a Crit on a 20. I was just reading about the Ascetic Style Feats: if you use that with a weapon with a high Threat Range and then take Improved Crit on top of that, you can score on HGM fairly often.

Sovereign Court

Scott Wilhelm wrote:


But the 1 level dip in Warpriest gives more than 1.5. Remember, I was also recommending the Minor Blessing of Destruction, which gives a +1 Damage, so that's +2.5 Damage on the attacks you take Weapon Focus for and a +1 for all your other attacks.

Technically yes - but you're forgetting all of the Blessing of Destruction's limitations. It takes a standard action to activate, it only lasts a minute so you can't use it as a long-term buff, and you only get it 3 times per day.

So - 3 times a day if you are 100% sure that a fight is coming you get to use it. (It's probably not worth the action economy one the fight starts.) Plus - it doesn't stack with other morale bonuses.


Charon's Little Helper wrote:
Scott Wilhelm wrote:


But the 1 level dip in Warpriest gives more than 1.5. Remember, I was also recommending the Minor Blessing of Destruction, which gives a +1 Damage, so that's +2.5 Damage on the attacks you take Weapon Focus for and a +1 for all your other attacks.

Technically yes - but you're forgetting all of the Blessing of Destruction's limitations. It takes a standard action to activate, it only lasts a minute so you can't use it as a long-term buff, and you only get it 3 times per day.

So - 3 times a day if you are 100% sure that a fight is coming you get to use it. (It's probably not worth the action economy one the fight starts.) Plus - it doesn't stack with other morale bonuses.

It had slipped my mind that it takes a Standard Action to Activate. That's a bit of a problem. It means you'd probably be spending the full first round buffing yourself, what, invoking the Blessing as a Standard Action, activating Freebooter's Bane as a Move Action, then entering Snake Style as a Swift Action as the enemy bears down on you, or maybe you spend your Move Action Moving toward your opponent. It seems to me that there are a lot of situations where you do indeed have that 1 round or part of 1 round at the start of combat to quickly buff yourself, but the ability seems to be worth having.

1 minute is a fine duration. Most combats don't last a minute, and more than 3 combats in a day are uncommon. By no means unheard of--I take your point. But I do maintain that one or more levels in Warpriest can be a good part of a powerful character build.

Sovereign Court

Scott Wilhelm wrote:
1 minute is a fine duration. Most combats don't last a minute, and more than 3 combats in a day are uncommon. By no means unheard of--I take your point.

I didn't mean that it likely wouldn't last a whole combat - it will most of the time. But it's not long enough that you can buff before you head into a dangerous area - it has to be right before the fight.


Charon's Little Helper wrote:
Scott Wilhelm wrote:
1 minute is a fine duration. Most combats don't last a minute, and more than 3 combats in a day are uncommon. By no means unheard of--I take your point.
I didn't mean that it likely wouldn't last a whole combat - it will most of the time. But it's not long enough that you can buff before you head into a dangerous area - it has to be right before the fight.

True.


I realized today that I wasn't factoring in a little detail of Fuse Styles.

Quote:


At 8th level, the master of many styles can fuse three styles at once. He can have the stances of three style feats active at the same time. He gains a bonus on attack rolls equal to the number of styles whose stances he currently has active. Furthermore, he can enter up to three stances as a swift action.

How much of a game-changer is this?

Here's how they compare, assuming you use a:

8th: +9/+4
9th: +9/+4
10th: +10/+5
11th: +11/+6
12th: +12/+7
13th: +12/+7
14th: +13/+8
15th: +15/+10/+5

Standard Flurry:
8th: +6/+6/+1/+1
9th: +7/+7/+2/+2
10th: +8/+8/+3/+3
11th: +9/+9/+4/+4/-1
12th: +10/+10/+5/+5/0
13th: +11/+11/+6/+6/+1
14th: +12/+12/+7/+7/+2
15th: +13/+13/+8/+8/+3/+3

Particularly 8th-11th, this seems pretty nice, provided you max out the number of Styles.


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So wait: You get a +3 to hit at level 8, an additional +1 at level 15, and another +1 at level 20. That's a bit better than the hit bonus from Weapon Training (+4 at 17th) or Rage (+4 at 20th), and equal to the bonus from Studied Target (+5 at 20th). As an added bonus, it scales faster than any of them: Studied Target is +2 until level 10, while Fuse Styles is +3 at level 8.

Still, it seems to mostly be making up for lost BAB. Half the time, you have the same hit bonus as a Warrior, with fewer iteratives, the other half of the time, you have a lower class-granted hit bonus. You're behind in hit chance from 1-7, 13,14, and 17-19 (12 levels). You're only ever ahead at level 8 (by 1), and are even for the other 7 levels. Unchained Monks have it even better, as they'll have more than twice your number of attacks, at the same hit bonus.

Compared to the regular Monk, you're down by a lot on number of iteratives, and are only even or ahead on hit bonuses compared to the regular Monk. Unfortunately, the difference is only a -2, and the regular Monk will have somewhere between twice and three times as many attacks as a MOMS.

Class hit bonus progression:
Rogue Progression:
1st: +0
2nd: +1
3rd: +2
4th: +3
5th: +3
6th: +4
7th: +5
8th: +6/+1
9th: +6/+1
10th: +7/+2
11th: +8/+3
12th: +9/+4
13th: +9/+4
14th: +10/+5
15th: +11/+6/+1
16th: +12/+7/+2
17th: +12/+7/+2
18th: +13/+8/+3
19th: +14/+9/+4
20th: +15/+10/+5

Warrior Progression:
1st: +1
2nd: +2
3rd: +3
4th: +4
5th: +5
6th: +6/+1
7th: +7/+2
8th: +8/+3
9th: +9/+4
10th: +10/+5
11th: +11/+6/+1
12th: +12/+7/+2
13th: +13/+8/+3
14th: +14/+9/+4
15th: +15/+10/+5
16th: +16/+11/+6/+1
17th: +17/+12/+7/+2
18th: +18/+13/+8/+3
19th: +19/+14/+9/+4
20th: +20/+15/+10/+5

Slayer Progression:
1st: +2
2nd: +3
3rd: +4
4th: +5
5th: +7
6th: +8/+3
7th: +9/+4
8th: +10/+5
9th: +11/+6
10th: +13/+8
11th: +14/+9/+4
12th: +15/+10/+5
13th: +16/+11/+6
14th: +17/+12/+7
15th: +19/+14/+9
16th: +20/+15/+10/+5
17th: +21/+16/+11/+6
18th: +22/+17/+12/+7
19th: +23/+18/+13/+8
20th: +25/+20/+15/+10

MOMS Progression:
1st: +0
2nd: +1
3rd: +2
4th: +3
5th: +3
6th: +4
7th: +5
8th: +9/+4
9th: +9/+4
10th: +10/+5
11th: +11/+6
12th: +12/+7
13th: +12/+7
14th: +13/+8
15th: +15/+10/+5
16th: +16/+11/+6
17th: +16/+11/+6
18th: +17/+12/+7
19th: +18/+13/+8
20th: +20/+15/+10

Regular Monk Progression:
1st: -1/-1
2nd: +0/+0
3rd: +1/+1
4th: +2/+2 (+2)
5th: +3/+3 (+3)
6th: +4/+4/-1
7th: +5/+5/+0 (+5)
8th: +6/+6/+1/+1 (+6)
9th: +7/+7/+2/+2 (+7)
10th: +8/+8/+3/+3 (+8)
11th: +9/+9/+4/+4/-1 (+9)
12th: +10/+10/+5/+5/+0 (+10)
13th: +11/+11/+6/+6/+1 (+11)
14th: +12/+12/+7/+7/+2 (+12)
15th: +13/+13/+8/+8/+3/+3 (+13)
16th: +14/+14/+9/+9/+4/+4/-1 (+14)
17th: +15/+15/+10/+10/+5/+5/+0 (+15)
18th: +16/+16/+11/+11/+6/+6/+1 (+16)
19th: +17/+17/+12/+12/+7/+7/+2 (+17)
20th: +18/+18/+13/+13/+8/+8/+3 (+18)

Unchained Monk Progression:
1st: +1/+1
2nd: +2/+2
3rd: +3/+3 (+3)
4th: +4/+4 (+4)
5th: +5/+5 (+5)
6th: +6/+6/+1 (+6)
7th: +7/+7/+2 (+7)
8th: +8/+8/+3 (+8)
9th: +9/+9/+4 (+9)
10th: +10/+10/+5 (+10)
11th: +11/+11/+11/+6/+1 (+11)
12th: +12/+12/+12/+7/+2 (+12)
13th: +13/+13/+13/+8/+3 (+13)
14th: +14/+14/+14/+9/+4 (+14)
15th: +15/+15/+15/+10/+5 (+15)
16th: +16/+16/+16/+11/+6/+1 (+16)
17th: +17/+17/+17/+12/+7/+2 (+17)
18th: +18/+18/+18/+13/+8/+3 (+18)
19th: +19/+19/+19/+14/+9/+4 (+19)
20th: +20/+20/+20/+15/+10/+5 (+20)

However, this changes when you look at class CMB.

Class CMB bonus progression:
Rogue Progression:
1st: +0
2nd: +1
3rd: +2
4th: +3
5th: +3
6th: +4
7th: +5
8th: +6
9th: +6
10th: +7
11th: +8
12th: +9
13th: +9
14th: +10
15th: +11
16th: +12
17th: +12
18th: +13
19th: +14
20th: +15

Warrior/Unchained Monk Progression:
1st: +1
2nd: +2
3rd: +3
4th: +4
5th: +5
6th: +6
7th: +7
8th: +8
9th: +9
10th: +10
11th: +11
12th: +12
13th: +13
14th: +14
15th: +15
16th: +16
17th: +17
18th: +18
19th: +19
20th: +20

Slayer Progression:
1st: +2
2nd: +3
3rd: +4
4th: +5
5th: +7
6th: +8
7th: +9
8th: +10
9th: +11
10th: +13
11th: +14
12th: +15
13th: +16
14th: +17
15th: +19
16th: +20
17th: +21
18th: +22
19th: +23
20th: +25

MOMS Progression:
1st: +0
2nd: +1
3rd: +3
4th: +4
5th: +5
6th: +6
7th: +7
8th: +11
9th: +12
10th: +13
11th: +14
12th: +15
13th: +16
14th: +17
15th: +19
16th: +20
17th: +21
18th: +22
19th: +23
20th: +25

Regular Monk Progression:
1st: +0
2nd: +1
3rd: +3
4th: +4
5th: +5
6th: +6
7th: +7
8th: +8
9th: +9
10th: +10
11th: +11
12th: +12
13th: +13
14th: +14
15th: +15
16th: +16
17th: +17
18th: +18
19th: +19
20th: +20

In CMB, you come out significantly ahead of the regular Monk, and even with the Slayer in the long run. In fact, past 8th level, the MOMS CMB bonus is mostly equal to the slayer- higher for a couple of levels, but never lower. After the first 7 levels, It is always higher than the Rogue, regular Monk, Unchained Monk, and Warrior's CMB. It's more or less on par from 1st through 7th level.

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