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Polymorph Melee Build Help


Advice


I’ve been trying to make a melee arcane caster who relies on polymorph. This is my attempt. I am fully aware that it’s not the strongest build, I just want to know I can make THIS character better – a pure caster arcanist would be way more powerful, I get that. I just want a polymorph-based build and this is the best I’ve been able to come up with. This is a homebrew campaign btw but nothing 3rd party – basically, if its not on the pazio website it’s not allowed. Additionally, only one archetype is allowed on each character and he doesn’t like traits.

I plan to focus on spells that don’t involve saves such as shocking grasp so I don’t need a stupid high Int, but it does get up to level 9 spells at level 20.

Sorcerer/Brown Fur Arcanist/Dragon Disciple

Human
Dual talent

Starting stats (rolled)
13 14 10 17 12 12.

I was going to array them like so

Str 17 +2 human = 19
Dex 13
Con 12
Int 14 + 2 human = 16
Cha 12
Wis 10

Planning to take a +1 dex at level 4, then probably Int at 8, then str every other level.

Progression plan

Level 1 Sorcerer – dragon bloodline
Level 2 --> Level 5 Brown fur arcanist. First exploit is bloodline development
Level 6 --> 9 Dragon disciple
Level 10 --> onward Brown fur arcanist

Levels 1-4 rely on enlarge person + dragon claws (only get 4 rounds per day, this is the largest limitation, although between casting shocking grasp and the fact that my GM almost never strings together multiple combats at lower levels, I think im ok – I’ll be buffing and casting for multiple rounds so I don’t actually need the claws that much, I think). Plan to cast shocking grasp and deliver with dragon claws for extra damage.

Level 5 opens up alter self. I was thinking I could use catfolk form for claws if the 4 rounds per day just isn’t cutting it. Question: can you enlarge person on top of alter self? Regardless, I can’t see how levels 5-8 are just not going to suck. How I wish they stuck a decent polymorph spell here.

Level 8 finally the build starts to not suck with monstrous physique opening up.

Hoping the high strength will help offset the bad bab and low damage dice. At level 1, it will start at 19 + 2 when I enlarge. Level 4 gets another +2 added via the Brown fur special exploit. Level 7 gets another +2, as does level 9 from dragon disciple. Assuming a belt of +str shows up around level 6-7, I should be having about a str of 25 as of level 7, 27 by level 9. I think with monstrous physiques options for many natural attacks, I’ll be at least respectable at that level.

I plan on taking the exploits that let me cast while shapeshifted and change the shapeshift spell on the fly (I forget the specific names).

Feats are where I’m most stuck. I’m thinking weapon focus claws at level 1 to help with the low bab. Perhaps just dodge at level 3 since I won’t be an AC monster (although all the natural pluses from both bloodline and disciple will help). Perhaps combat casting as I do figure I’ll be casting touch spells defensively in combat before slashing people with my claws. With my low bab and multiple attacks, I’m not sure power attack is a good idea. Suppose I could take meta magic feats to make my touch spells hit harder. Advice?


No advice at all?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

That Sorcerer level looks painful. Would swapping it for a Draconic Bloodrager level violate your premise? Will your GM let the Bloodline Development Exploit count for Dragon Disciple?

For a polymorph focus, a familiar (from Arcanist Exploit) will help a lot because of Shared Spells. Polymorph the Familiar and attack round 1, then yourself round 2 if needed. Compsognathus (w/Mauler Archetype if you can) is good here, it gets you +4 Initiative, and an effective base Str of 12 (14+ with Mauler) for Polymorph bonuses.

Sovereign Court

Weapon Focus requires BAB +1, which you won't have at level 1.
Enlarge Person + Alter Self also does not work, as Alter Self has the Polymorph keyword.

PRD Transmutation(Polymorph) wrote:
You can only be affected by one polymorph spell at a time. If a new polymorph spell is cast on you (or you activate a polymorph effect, such as wild shape), you can decide whether or not to allow it to affect you, taking the place of the old spell. In addition, other spells that change your size have no effect on you while you are under the effects of a polymorph spell.

If you are going the natural attacks route, consider a Helm of the Mammoth Lord, eventually. Its expensive for lower level at 8,500 gp, but gives you a gore attack in addition to your other natural attacks. Power Attack is actually a good idea for natural attacks, because while its a -1 to attack on your low bonus, primary natural attacks get 2 damage. And since all of your attacks are at your highest bonus (if they are all primary) you should still hit reasonably well. Unfortunately, you will get to 8 BAB at level 15. Your strength should make up a bit for the low BAB. Also, Heroism. That being said, I would suggest Arcane Strike instead. That way at level 13 you will have +3 damage and count your attacks as magic at no attack bonus loss.

Mauler Familiar is from Familiar Folio so that (and Eldritch Guardian archetype for fighter) is out.

I am not really seeing much advantage of Brown-fur Transmuter, especially dipping into Sorcerer as well. Essentially just +2 str, but if that is the character you want to play by all means. I agree though, with Bloodrager instead of Sorcerer. You would get 4 + con rounds of claws, you qualify for weapon focus(claws) at level 1, +4 strength while raging. And you can take Extra Rage for an extra 6 rounds of claws per day. The only problem is then qualifying for Dragon Disciple since Arcanist doesn't qualify as the spontaneous caster. Unless you want to argue that the ability of the Spell Specialist Archetype to cast a 1st(and 2nd, etc) level spell spontaneously qualifies.


Yeah bloodrager would be way better but he doesn't count as a caster till later levels so would kill the arcanist path completely. I wanted to get to the top tier polymorphism spells.

I could skip the brownfur archetype and instead do the bloodline archetype instead but I think the level 9 ability to cast poly spells on your team ates is wicked and worth the 1 sorcerer dip. And the extra +1 per die on all damage spells of the correct element is a nice bonus.

Thanks for the helm and arcane strike both good calls. Any other feats?

Shadow Lodge

Are you focusing on Polymorph to enhance yourself, or to be baleful to others?

I can't help much on using it to improve yourself, but I just made an offensive polymorph specialist. Used a gnome sorcerer with Warped (Aberrant) bloodline.

For a level 3 spell, Monstrous Extremities is your best friend. Make a touch attack, they make a save or their arms (or legs) turn into non-functional wings - try wielding your sword without hands... It won't come on until Arcanist 6 though, so a bit of a wait.

The Exchange

I think you need to decide if you want 9th level spells or you want to beatstick stuff.

I think if I were doing it I might try Sorcerer into EK and Hellknight Signifier.

Also most campaigns don't go up to level 20.


Just a Mort wrote:

I think you need to decide if you want 9th level spells or you want to beatstick stuff.

I think if I were doing it I might try Sorcerer into EK and Hellknight Signifier.

Also most campaigns don't go up to level 20.

I want to beatstick stuff WITH level 9 spells :P

No, its the higher tier poly spells that interest me more - like level 5-7 spells. I was just pointing out that the build could in theory still hit level 9 spells.


thistledown wrote:

Are you focusing on Polymorph to enhance yourself, or to be baleful to others?

I can't help much on using it to improve yourself, but I just made an offensive polymorph specialist. Used a gnome sorcerer with Warped (Aberrant) bloodline.

For a level 3 spell, Monstrous Extremities is your best friend. Make a touch attack, they make a save or their arms (or legs) turn into non-functional wings - try wielding your sword without hands... It won't come on until Arcanist 6 though, so a bit of a wait.

Interesting spell. I could use it to give myself hooves, extra natural attacks.


thistledown wrote:
For a level 3 spell, Monstrous Extremities is your best friend. Make a touch attack, they make a save or their arms (or legs) turn into non-functional wings - try wielding your sword without hands... It won't come on until Arcanist 6 though, so a bit of a wait.

1 minute casting time, which is a bit much for a touch spell in combat. That spell's for giving you an extra natural weapon (at which it generally sucks) or for mentally torturing captured enemies, not a debuff.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Are you super attached to being an arcane caster? I have a very powerful polymorphing human melee build, but she's not an arcane caster: she's more a Druid. I would hesitate to call this a Druid, since I multiclass extensively.

Human

Human, Wildshape
1Brawler1: Martial Versatility, Brawler's Cunning, Unarmed 1d6, BAB+1, Simple Weapons, Light Armor, Shields, Axes, Blind Fighting, 2 Weapon

2B1Druid1: Domain, Lvl 1 Spells
3B2D2: Improved Grapple, BAB+2
4B1D3: Lvl2 Spells, Ability +1, BAB+3
5B1D4: Wild Shape, Natural Spell, BAB+4
6B1D4Warpriest1: Aura, Lvl1 1, Spells, Sacred Weapon 1d6, Martial Weapons, Medium and Heavy armor, blessings: Destruction, something else, Weapon Focus Claws
7B2D4W1: Vital Strike, Brawler's Flurry, Shaping Focus, Large Animals, BAB+5
8B2D4W1Fighter1: Greater Grapple, Ability +1, Huge Animals, BAB+6
9B2D4W1F2: Weapon Specialization, Claws, Martial Versatility, Weapon Focus, BAB+7

With the Shaping Focus Feat, your nonDruid Levels count as Druid Levels when it comes to Shape Shifting, up to 4 levels higher than your Druid level, but that's all this build needs. The idea here is that having gotten your natural attacks via Wild Shape, the remainder of your levels will be devoted to building up those natural attacks. Some builds like this specialize in a favorite build. This particular build is fairly generalized, using the Human Race to take Martial Versatility so that you can apply Weapon Focus, Weapon Specialization (at level 11), and perhaps some other Feats to all your Natural Attacks. The advantage of this build so far is that you can apply it to any form you Wild Shape into. But I have my favorites:

Giant Octopus: Bite and 8 Tentacles, all with Grab and Constrict. Wear Barding with Armor Spikes, and you do Armor Spike Damage, too! With your Large Size, the attacks each do a base of 1d8. But if you cast Strong Jaw on yourself--Level 3 Druid Spell, so this character needs a Wand of Strong Jaw--the base damage goes up to 3d6. The number of Attacks is huge: 1 Bite + 8 Tentacles + 8 Constricts + 8 Armor Spikes(which don't get augmented by Strong Jaw) + 2 Unarmed Strikes = 27 attacks/round! The biggest problem with Giant Octopus is that I can easily see is that it's an Aquatic creature, and I can easily see a lot of GMs stripping you of your ability to breathe air.

Warcat: a huge feline, 1 Bite, 2 Claws + 2 Rakes + 2 Unarmed Strikes + Armor Spikes= 8 attacks, and all those attacks do a base 4d6 when buffed by a Strong Jaw Spell.

I don't have a flying animal I'm in love with. I found a Huge Flying Animal, the Pterosaur, Quetzalcoatlus.

To get even more natural attacks, You can acquire a Helm of the Mammoth Lord and gain a Gore Attack. You can take a level in White Haired Witch and gain a Hair Attack. Both of these Natural Attacks you will get to use in your Animal forms. You put the Helm on after you Wildshape. The White Hair Class Ability lets you animate your Hair and turn it into your natural attack. Giant Octopi don't have hair, though, so your GM might take it away from you then, but Warcats have hair. Technically, it shouldn't be a problem. You should be able to use White Hair regardless of your Race. Kobolds and Tengu don't have hair, and they are allowed to be White Haired Witches.

This build would benefit from a level in something that grants Wizard or Paladin spells, such as Arcanist. Then you can learn the spell Swift Girding to don your Octopus-Shaped, Large-Sized Lamellar Horn Armor as a Standard Action.

You have a few options for increasing your damage even further. More levels in Warpriest will increase your Base Damage. You can start taking level in Ninja and do Sneak Attack Damage. With Vanishing Trick you lock in your SAD by turning Invisible as a Swift Action. With that level in Arcanist, you can do Dimensional Slide and better achieve Flanking. With Distracting Attack, your victims remain Flatfooted for the rest of your round and for the rest of your many, many attacks. You might take Extra Ki. You might dip 3 levels in Monk Drunken Master and replenish your Ki endlessly as you drink--well, like a fish, a cuttlefish.

Because the Grapple is a separate attack, your Constrict or Armor Spike damage gain Sneak Attack Damage, too. Tentacles and Hair gain free Grapple attacks with every hit. Piercing Weapons, such as Bite and Gore, gain a free Grapple attack if you take the Hamatula Strike Feat. You can double your Sneak Attack Damage with Blunt weapons such as Bite, Claw, Tentacle, and Unarmed Strikes with the feats Sap Adept, Sap Master, and Knockout Artist.


A lot of my ideas above are about Natural Attacks, not exactly about Polymorphing, so they are applicable to any Polymorphing build you choose.

Another option for Polymorphing is if you play a Witch with the Beast-Bonded Familiar Archetype. You can polymorph into a larger form of whatever your familiar is. There are the Goliath and Kraken Caller druid archetypes. Kraken Callers let you grow tentacles and Goliaths let you turn into Giants. Both of those will let you gain Natural Attacks and keep using your regular gear.

Still another option would be to just be an Alchemist. Alchemists gain Polymorph Spells as Extracts, and they can use magic Wands. So, you can mulitclass as some sort of melee build, using Alchemist Levels to support you with buffing extracts, discoveries, and mutagens, and Use Wands of Beast Shape or Monstrous Physique.


I wrote:
With Distracting Attack, your victims remain Flatfooted for the rest of your round and for the rest of your many, many attacks.

I was just realizing Distracting Attack doesn't work that way. The Rogue cannot be the beneficiary of his own distraction. So instead of Distracting Attack, I recommend the Dirty Trick Combat Maneuver to make your opponents Blind. Take Combat Expertise or Dirty Fighter, then Improved Dirty Trick, then Quick Dirty Trick, then Greater Dirty Trick.

Another possiblility would be a combination of Cornudgeon Smash and Shatter Defenses.

Although by the time the build I'm recommending gets around to developing Sneak Attack, she'll be high enough level to get a wand that grants her Blindsight and an Eversmoking Bottle.


Scott: wow. I knew some wicked druid builds were out there, and you provided one. I'm really stuck on trying to make the arcane polymorphism build work though. Maybe I can steal some of your elements though


Also not a Arcane Caster, but I noticed you want to be a Catfolk. Catfolk have a Monk Archetype called Nimble Guardian. Level 7 Nimble Guardians can transform into cats, and I'm pretty sure they can transform into Warcats. They are Martial characters, already, so they are already decent in combat.

But for arcane spellcaster alternatives, I already mentioned Beast Bonded Witch and Alchemist.

It occurs to me from your build that you might not want so much a Polymorphing build, but rather a Natural Attack build. Similar, but not quite the same thing.


No I really do want to emphasize the poly spells but they really suck till at least 3rd level spells so I need to fill that gap. It's a hard (imposible?) Build to do well because I honestly think the poly spells are underpowered for their level


Oh and I will look up that witch - I know nothing of it atm


Witches don't have the poly spells on their list, although some patrons have some most notably the transformation patron.

Grand Lodge

Timdog wrote:
Yeah bloodrager would be way better but he doesn't count as a caster till later levels.

A Bloodrager is a Caster Level 1. He does not get -3 CL like a Paladin or a Ranger.


Timdog wrote:
Witches don't have the poly spells on their list, although some patrons have some most notably the transformation patron.

I was thinking of the Beast Bonded Witch Archetype. It allows you to turn into an Animal of the same type as your Familiar at Level 8. But you don't want to use class abilities to change shape. For myself, I like it for the ability to give your Familiar Feats.


Bloodragers don't get a caster level till lv4, but when they do they get CL4.


4 people marked this as a favorite.

Ever consider a straight Wizard - Transmutation Specialist?

- get a permanent-like bonus to a physical stat that increases with level
- enchant your Arcane Bond Amulet of Mighty Fist for half cost
- get your best polymorph spells faster

S: 18 D: 14 C: 14 I: 14 W: 10 Ch: 8 (20 pt human, +1 STR via trans spec)

Feats:
Improved Init (human)
Toughness (1st)
Arcane Strike (3rd)
Power Attack (5th)
etc.

Enhance your defenses with long lasting buff spells: Mage Armor, False Life, Arcane Barrier, Heroism, Stoneskin, etc.

You'll make up for lower BAB by using multiple natural attacks, Heroism spell, higher than normal STR, and cheap Amulet.

Sample Strength Progression:
1st - 18 STR (17 base, +1 trans spec)
3rd - 20 STR (17 base, +1 trans spec, +2 Alter Self)
5th - 22 STR (18 base, +2 trans spec, +2 Monstrous Physique I)
7th - 24 STR (18 base, +2 trans spec, +4 Monstrous Physique II)

And if things go bad, you can always have some pretty nice spells to fall back on for range damage, area control, stealth, and/or escape.

Shadow Lodge

avr wrote:
thistledown wrote:
For a level 3 spell, Monstrous Extremities is your best friend. Make a touch attack, they make a save or their arms (or legs) turn into non-functional wings - try wielding your sword without hands... It won't come on until Arcanist 6 though, so a bit of a wait.
1 minute casting time, which is a bit much for a touch spell in combat. That spell's for giving you an extra natural weapon (at which it generally sucks) or for mentally torturing captured enemies, not a debuff.

But it's a touch spell. So you can cast it before the combat, wander around for as long as you like, then deliver the touch someone in the first round.


Rory wrote:

Ever consider a straight Wizard - Transmutation Specialist?

- get a permanent-like bonus to a physical stat that increases with level
- enchant your Arcane Bond Amulet of Mighty Fist for half cost
- get your best polymorph spells faster

S: 18 D: 14 C: 14 I: 14 W: 10 Ch: 8 (20 pt human, +1 STR via trans spec)

Feats:
Improved Init (human)
Toughness (1st)
Arcane Strike (3rd)
Power Attack (5th)
etc.

Enhance your defenses with long lasting buff spells: Mage Armor, False Life, Arcane Barrier, Heroism, Stoneskin, etc.

You'll make up for lower BAB by using multiple natural attacks, Heroism spell, higher than normal STR, and cheap Amulet.

Sample Strength Progression:
1st - 18 STR (17 base, +1 trans spec)
3rd - 20 STR (17 base, +1 trans spec, +2 Alter Self)
5th - 22 STR (18 base, +2 trans spec, +2 Monstrous Physique I)
7th - 24 STR (18 base, +2 trans spec, +4 Monstrous Physique II)

And if things go bad, you can always have some pretty nice spells to fall back on for range damage, area control, stealth, and/or escape.

Well darn. I think that's a winner :)


thistledown wrote:
avr wrote:
thistledown wrote:
For a level 3 spell, Monstrous Extremities is your best friend. Make a touch attack, they make a save or their arms (or legs) turn into non-functional wings - try wielding your sword without hands... It won't come on until Arcanist 6 though, so a bit of a wait.
1 minute casting time, which is a bit much for a touch spell in combat. That spell's for giving you an extra natural weapon (at which it generally sucks) or for mentally torturing captured enemies, not a debuff.
But it's a touch spell. So you can cast it before the combat, wander around for as long as you like, then deliver the touch someone in the first round.

Providing there's a good target in melee reach in the first round. Otherwise you either waste the spell taking out one mook, waste it casting another spell, or largely waste your action by just moving for at least 1 round. IME those would be the norm.


Rory wrote:

Ever consider a straight Wizard - Transmutation Specialist?

- get a permanent-like bonus to a physical stat that increases with level
- enchant your Arcane Bond Amulet of Mighty Fist for half cost
- get your best polymorph spells faster

S: 18 D: 14 C: 14 I: 14 W: 10 Ch: 8 (20 pt human, +1 STR via trans spec)

Feats:
Improved Init (human)
Toughness (1st)
Arcane Strike (3rd)
Power Attack (5th)
etc.

Enhance your defenses with long lasting buff spells: Mage Armor, False Life, Arcane Barrier, Heroism, Stoneskin, etc.

You'll make up for lower BAB by using multiple natural attacks, Heroism spell, higher than normal STR, and cheap Amulet.

Sample Strength Progression:
1st - 18 STR (17 base, +1 trans spec)
3rd - 20 STR (17 base, +1 trans spec, +2 Alter Self)
5th - 22 STR (18 base, +2 trans spec, +2 Monstrous Physique I)
7th - 24 STR (18 base, +2 trans spec, +4 Monstrous Physique II)

And if things go bad, you can always have some pretty nice spells to fall back on for range damage, area control, stealth, and/or escape.

Whats your thoughts on going EK for extra BAB? Would lose two levels of spell casting (one for the class to get all marital weapons, and then one for the first level of EK) so probably not worth it.

Although if i did dip a magus or two it would open this door the door for spell combat and spell strike...

But that probably loses the beauty of yours which is quick access to the relevant poly spells.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Legends Subscriber

The great thing is you can decide to dip Barb or Fighter or Ranger or whatever anytime if you decide to go Eldritch Knight. Well, anytime up to 9th level or so. Slight downside in that you would lose the progression on the Transmuter 8th level power, Change Shape.


If you go wizard don't forget about the knowledge is power and multimorph discoveries. With a half decent strength and intelligence you make a formidable combat maneuver specialist. I like mixing contingency with transformation for a boost to melee abilities with this build. In general check out this nifty new guide.


Kaboogy wrote:
If you go wizard don't forget about the knowledge is power and multimorph discoveries. With a half decent strength and intelligence you make a formidable combat maneuver specialist. I like mixing contingency with transformation for a boost to melee abilities with this build. In general check out this nifty new guide.

Super helpful two discoveries! Thanks.

Any way for a wizard to still cast while polymorphed?


If I go the shape change school, would I be able to battleshape on top of a polymorph spell?

Dark Archive

Kaboogy wrote:
If you go wizard don't forget about the knowledge is power and multimorph discoveries. With a half decent strength and intelligence you make a formidable combat maneuver specialist. I like mixing contingency with transformation for a boost to melee abilities with this build. In general check out this nifty new guide.

That's a cool tricc, but it won't work until Level 15 with an ioun stone and Spell Specialization- 13 for an Arcanist with Potent Magic. You need a CL 18 Contingency to make Transformation a contingent spell.


LuniasM wrote:
Kaboogy wrote:
If you go wizard don't forget about the knowledge is power and multimorph discoveries. With a half decent strength and intelligence you make a formidable combat maneuver specialist. I like mixing contingency with transformation for a boost to melee abilities with this build. In general check out this nifty new guide.
That's a cool tricc, but it won't work until Level 15 with an ioun stone and Spell Specialization- 13 for an Arcanist with Potent Magic. You need a CL 18 Contingency to make Transformation a contingent spell.

That's true, but it's applicable with all offensive spells, like rage, bull's strength etc.

Timdog wrote:
If I go the shape change school, would I be able to battleshape on top of a polymorph spell?

I believe you can, since it doesn't state it's a polymorph effect. But check with your GM.

Timdog wrote:
Any way for a wizard to still cast while polymorphed?

Not as well as a druid or Arcanist, but yeah. With monstrous physique and giant form I'm pretty sure you can cast as normal. Maybe with elemental form too, but that's debated. As for other forms, for vocal components get a ring of eloquence, for material components use a polymorph pouch, and just try to turn into forms that can use somatic components or avoid casting spells that have them.


Timdog wrote:
Whats your thoughts on going EK for extra BAB? Would lose two levels of spell casting (one for the class to get all marital weapons, and then one for the first level of EK) so probably not worth it.

With EK, you gain +1 BAB at the cost of 2 levels of spell casting. Since the polymorphing wizard doesn't care about iteratives from higher BAB, that means it is simply +1 to hit that is lost. Typically, you can get +1 to hit with that whole level of higher spells you'd lose.

EKs advantage lies in weapon wielding instead of the polymorph path.

Timdog wrote:
Any way for a wizard to still cast while polymorphed?

You can't cast as an animal (Beast Shape I and II) or plant (Plant Shape).

You can cast as a humanoid (Alter Self), monstrous humanoid (Monstrous Physique), magical beast (Beast Shape III and IV), giant (Giant Form), dragon (Form of the Dragon), and elemental (Elemental Body).

Timdog wrote:
If I go the shape change school, would I be able to battleshape on top of a polymorph spell?

Yes. This is really powerful at lower levels, but isn't as powerful later. At later levels, you can gain claws, bite, and gore in a single form already. Plus, swift action spells start to pick up more and more power later. It also doesn't work well with Arcane Strike.

The Enhancement subschool is the opposite. It is weaker to start and gets more powerful as you gain levels due to its versatility. The 8th level ability is pretty powerful to raise saves for a round or boost spell DCs when needed.

Both options are better than the base school in my opinion.


Thanks! Now I just need a new campaign to start ;)

Shadow Lodge

Oh, you didn't list Traits that I saw. Get Transmuter of Korada. +1 to CL of all your transmutation spells, and extra duration on one of the stat boost spells per day.


My Gm doesn't use traits :(


Rory wrote:
Timdog wrote:
Whats your thoughts on going EK for extra BAB? Would lose two levels of spell casting (one for the class to get all marital weapons, and then one for the first level of EK) so probably not worth it.

With EK, you gain +1 BAB at the cost of 2 levels of spell casting. Since the polymorphing wizard doesn't care about iteratives from higher BAB, that means it is simply +1 to hit that is lost. Typically, you can get +1 to hit with that whole level of higher spells you'd lose.

EKs advantage lies in weapon wielding instead of the polymorph path.

Timdog wrote:
Any way for a wizard to still cast while polymorphed?

You can't cast as an animal (Beast Shape I and II) or plant (Plant Shape).

You can cast as a humanoid (Alter Self), monstrous humanoid (Monstrous Physique), magical beast (Beast Shape III and IV), giant (Giant Form), dragon (Form of the Dragon), and elemental (Elemental Body).

Timdog wrote:
If I go the shape change school, would I be able to battleshape on top of a polymorph spell?

Yes. This is really powerful at lower levels, but isn't as powerful later. At later levels, you can gain claws, bite, and gore in a single form already. Plus, swift action spells start to pick up more and more power later. It also doesn't work well with Arcane Strike.

The Enhancement subschool is the opposite. It is weaker to start and gets more powerful as you gain levels due to its versatility. The 8th level ability is pretty powerful to raise saves for a round or boost spell DCs when needed.

Both options are better than the base school in my opinion.

Is the enhancement bonus really any good? They don't stack and you can usually get it via gear drops by this point


Timdog wrote:
Is the enhancement bonus really any good? They don't stack and you can usually get it via gear drops by this point

For you, at 8th level, I foresee a +4 STR belt, a +2 INT headband, and +2 CON from transmuter bonus at level 8. So, with the swift action +4 to any stat, you get the potential of...

...+2 AC and Reflex saves for a round
...+2 Will saves for a round
...+1 Fort saves for a round
...+2 Wisdom, Dex, and Charisma skills for a round
...+1 Int skills for a round
...+8 emergency hitpoints bank
...+1 spell DC whenever you cast a spell with a save
...+1 concentration check when you have to cast a spell defensively
etc.


avr wrote:
thistledown wrote:
avr wrote:
thistledown wrote:
For a level 3 spell, Monstrous Extremities is your best friend. Make a touch attack, they make a save or their arms (or legs) turn into non-functional wings - try wielding your sword without hands... It won't come on until Arcanist 6 though, so a bit of a wait.
1 minute casting time, which is a bit much for a touch spell in combat. That spell's for giving you an extra natural weapon (at which it generally sucks) or for mentally torturing captured enemies, not a debuff.
But it's a touch spell. So you can cast it before the combat, wander around for as long as you like, then deliver the touch someone in the first round.
Providing there's a good target in melee reach in the first round. Otherwise you either waste the spell taking out one mook, waste it casting another spell, or largely waste your action by just moving for at least 1 round. IME those would be the norm.

Or you run into somebody you don't want to apply it to for another reason:

Transmuter: "All right, I've got this spell charged up -- next thing I touch gets the wing of a penguin!"
Barbarian (opens door): "It's your uncle Lord Patronus!"
Transmuter: "Uncle! We weren't expecting to find you here!"
Lord Patronus: "My dear nephew! I had lost all hope of rescue! Come give your uncle a hug!"
Transmuter: "Wait, I have to-"
Lord Patronus: "My dear nephew, I haven't seen you since . . . GAAAAHH! What have my arms turned into!?"
. . .


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Rory wrote:
Timdog wrote:
Any way for a wizard to still cast while polymorphed?

You can't cast as an animal (Beast Shape I and II) or plant (Plant Shape).

You can cast as a humanoid (Alter Self), monstrous humanoid (Monstrous Physique), magical beast (Beast Shape III and IV), giant (Giant Form), dragon (Form of the Dragon), and elemental (Elemental Body).

This is not correct.

The SRD (emphasis mine) wrote:
When you cast a polymorph spell that changes you into a creature of the animal, dragon, elemental, magical beast, plant, or vermin type, all of your gear melds into your body. Items that provide constant bonuses and do not need to be activated continue to function while melded in this way (with the exception of armor and shield bonuses, which cease to function). Items that require activation cannot be used while you maintain that form. While in such a form, you cannot cast any spells that require material components (unless you have the Eschew Materials or Natural Spell feat), and can only cast spells with somatic or verbal components if the form you choose has the capability to make such movements or speak, such as a dragon. Other polymorph spells might be subject to this restriction as well, if they change you into a form that is unlike your original form (subject to GM discretion). If your new form does not cause your equipment to meld into your form, the equipment resizes to match your new size.

So you can cast while using alter self, monstrous physique, giant form or undead anatomy, but not while using beast shape, form of the dragon, elemental body, plant shape or vermin form.


Tarondor, read the whole sentence that you partially highlighted:

"While in such a form, you cannot cast any spells that require material components (unless you have the Eschew Materials or Natural Spell feat), and can only cast spells with somatic or verbal components if the form you choose has the capability to make such movements or speak, such as a dragon."

You can cast spells while using Form of the Dragon and Elemental Body. You can't cast material component spells, but you can cast spells.

For posterity, you can even cast spells using Beast Shape, Plant Shape, and Vermin Shape as well, but removing the verbal, somatic, and material components from spells is mostly impractical for the purpose.


Guys this thread is a year old...


So? What is the problem PD?


These guys have probably either got their advise or didn't and moved on. Thread is dead, yo.


I you really want advice, theres tis site, rpgbot.net, its creator has crazy PF skills.

Furtermore, i whould suggest the folowing guide: PGtP(Practical Guide to Polymorph
And this too:
TWH(Transmutr Wizard Handbook


So i reckon you either didnt make an Arcane Polymorper or found a build by yourself, yes?


So now i know what discovery to take on 4th level of alchemist... Alchemical zombie!
Get it? Because that whould make me a necromancer! A Necrothreader! MUHAHAHAHA!


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Potato disciple wrote:
These guys have probably either got their advise or didn't and moved on. Thread is dead, yo.

And nobody else will ever look here for advice or information? I did.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Rory wrote:

Tarondor, read the whole sentence that you partially highlighted:

"While in such a form, you cannot cast any spells that require material components (unless you have the Eschew Materials or Natural Spell feat), and can only cast spells with somatic or verbal components if the form you choose has the capability to make such movements or speak, such as a dragon."

You can cast spells while using Form of the Dragon and Elemental Body. You can't cast material component spells, but you can cast spells.

For posterity, you can even cast spells using Beast Shape, Plant Shape, and Vermin Shape as well, but removing the verbal, somatic, and material components from spells is mostly impractical for the purpose.

Fair enough. I was referring to being able to cast without those restrictions, but you are quite right.

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