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Beginner Feat Plan Paladin


Advice


So I just started playing pathfinder and I had a feat plan with these feats I already chose 3 we are at level 4. And I am playing as a Paladin with a longsword and shield with a side greatsword
I chose
Toughness
Cleave
Power attack

Future Feats I want:
Weapon Focus
Vital Strike
Improved Sunder
Improved Critical
Blind Fight
Great Cleave
Vital Strike Improved
Vital Strike Greater
Tell me if there anything I should change suggestions I kinda just new and need some help if im making some good choices

Dark Archive

So first I have to ask you a few questions:

Are you using the standard Paladin or an Archetype?

What race are you playing? There are many good racial feats in the game.

What is your party composition like? This will let us know if you are filling more than one role and if Teamwork feats are a good idea.

Are you playing an AP (Adventure Path)? If so which one? This will matter.

Are there any house rules we should know about? Core only etc...

If you answer these questions we can more accurately answer your original question.


Riberius wrote:

So I just started playing pathfinder and I had a feat plan with these feats I already chose 3 we are at level 4. And I am playing as a Paladin with a longsword and shield with a side greatsword

I chose
Toughness
Cleave
Power attack

Future Feats I want:
Weapon Focus
Vital Strike
Improved Sunder
Improved Critical
Blind Fight
Great Cleave
Vital Strike Improved
Vital Strike Greater
Tell me if there anything I should change suggestions I kinda just new and need some help if im making some good choices

Fortified Armor Training in place of Blind fight.

My paladin in the group im running had 4 confirmation rolls against him in a single engagement.

Get that feat at some point, and get a ton of bucklers. Critical hits can still bring you down; no matter how many smites you have. Darkness at later levels can be easily dealt with from magic items or through other party members so I don't think you'll need that.


Riberius wrote:

So I just started playing pathfinder and I had a feat plan with these feats I already chose 3 we are at level 4. And I am playing as a Paladin with a longsword and shield with a side greatsword

I chose
Toughness
Cleave
Power attack

Future Feats I want:
Weapon Focus
Vital Strike
Improved Sunder
Improved Critical
Blind Fight
Great Cleave
Vital Strike Improved
Vital Strike Greater
Tell me if there anything I should change suggestions I kinda just new and need some help if im making some good choices

And gaze attacks usually have DCs to saves; something that a paladin seems to excel at.


I can't remember if I am remembering this right, but I do not believe cleave and vital strike can be used together. Make sure you are aware of that.

Furious focus is a good feat for power attack builds. Especially with builds focused around single attacks like cleave, instead of full attack actions.

If you want to go cleave, reach weapons can be useful as it increases the chance there is an enemy in reach that is still adjacent to the enemy you first attacked.

Shield bash and friends could be useful as well.

Question about style: are you going sword and shield to have the image of a typical knight in shining armor? Unfortunately it seems to be a difficult style to use well. A shield is only really going to be useful at later levels when you can afford to add enhancements to it. Otherwise it just gives you +2 AC.
However there are paladin archetypes, staunch defender I think may be one, that let you trade out divine bond with a weapon to divine bond with armor, which might help the idea of a heavily armored knight.

Note that I am remembering names from when I looked at making my pally ages ago so they might not be the right one


Divine Defender
I got the name wrong

Dark Archive

Some things to consider in general with a paladins feat build.

When you confirm a critical hit any extra damage bonuses multiply but extra damage dice do not. This means your bonus damage from Smite Evil and Power Attack will multiply but your extra dice from Vital Strike won't. Also, Vital Strike can only be used for a single attack action, so at higher levels you a less likely to make use of the feat during a Full Round Attack Action. This is why people like weapons that either have a good crit range like the scimitar and falchion (18-20) or higher crit multipliers like x3 or x4. The Falcata is the best of both worlds as far as one handed swords go, with a 1d8 19-20 x3.

As far as the Cleave tree is concerned I would suggest avoiding it completely. It's a feat heavy tree that doesn't gain you much. Don't get me wrong, the Cleave tree can be good, but it lends itself to Fighters and Rangers who have the extra combat feats to spare.

I love Toughness for any melee based character except the Paladin. Starting at level 2 the Paladin can, as a swift action, use Lay-on-Hands on themselves. This means the Extra Lay-on-Hands feat will actually extend their hit points further than Toughness will.

Feats I like for a Paladin (in no particular order);

Power Attack (must for any melee build)
Exotic Weapon Proficiency Falcata (if you are swinging that way, not necessary though)
Weapon Focus
Furious Focus (Hitting consistently is important)
Extra Lay on Hands (don't be afraid to take me more than once!)
Improved Critical
Critical Focus
Greater Mercy
Blind-Fight
Improved Initiative
Step-Up

There are many others, but that should get you started. I could give you more specific suggestions if I knew more about your intended build, party etc...


J4RH34D wrote:
I can't remember if I am remembering this right, but I do not believe cleave and vital strike can be used together. Make sure you are aware of that.

They can't be used together, but there is a Weapon Trick that lets you use them together:

Quote:

Cleaving Smash

Additional Prerequisite(s): Cleave, Improved Vital Strike, Power Attack
When you use Cleave, you can add the additional damage from Vital Strike to both your initial and your secondary attacks. If you also have the Greater Vital Strike feat, you can instead add the damage from Improved Vital Strike to both your initial and your secondary attacks.

However it's probably too feat intensive for a paladin unless they really want to specialise in this.

Also I'm surprised no one's mentioned FEY FOUNDLING yet. Better than toughness or Extra Lay On Hands for keeping you alive, it makes all your LoH 57% more effective and stacks with any other bonuses you'll get.
The only drawbacks are that you have to take it at level 1 (which might prohibit it's use in this case) and that it can potentially change your character's backstory (which also might prohibit it's use here)

Dark Archive

^Agrees with Fey Foundling. Can't believe I forgot to suggest that!

*Ashamed of myself.


Todd 3465 wrote:

^Agrees with Fey Foundling. Can't believe I forgot to suggest that!

*Ashamed of myself.

Well the OP did say (s)he's Level 4 already, so I'll let you off with a warning this time.


Todd 3465 wrote:

So first I have to ask you a few questions:

Are you using the standard Paladin or an Archetype?

What race are you playing? There are many good racial feats in the game.

What is your party composition like? This will let us know if you are filling more than one role and if Teamwork feats are a good idea.

Are you playing an AP (Adventure Path)? If so which one? This will matter.

Are there any house rules we should know about? Core only etc...

If you answer these questions we can more accurately answer your original question.

Im a standard Paladin I am a Human, We have another fighter in our group which is a Monk we also have Druid, Clerk, Rogue, and Ranger.

I dont think we in an AP the DM probably would've told us and to look into it more so no and house rules non that he has broughten up yet.... im new like this is my first one ever so im pretty clueless to some stuff sorry =(


Riberius wrote:
Todd 3465 wrote:

So first I have to ask you a few questions:

Are you using the standard Paladin or an Archetype?

What race are you playing? There are many good racial feats in the game.

What is your party composition like? This will let us know if you are filling more than one role and if Teamwork feats are a good idea.

Are you playing an AP (Adventure Path)? If so which one? This will matter.

Are there any house rules we should know about? Core only etc...

If you answer these questions we can more accurately answer your original question.

Im a standard Paladin I am a Human, We have another fighter in our group which is a Monk we also have Druid, Clerk, Rogue, and Ranger.

I dont think we in an AP the DM probably would've told us and to look into it more so no and house rules non that he has broughten up yet.... im new like this is my first one ever so im pretty clueless to some stuff sorry =(

It's alright; everyone start's somewhere. I don't usually play paladin as I am not fond of alignment restriction so good on you for trying one. I can play Clerics or Druids no problem, but being confined to one alignment bugs me; especially coupled with the Code of Conduct.

What are the other party members gearing towards? Is the Cleric in the front, is the Rogue going for combat tricks, is the ranger a frontliner? I'd need to know that before I can recommend anything (and this info will help the others here with advice as well).


MKtheDM wrote:
Riberius wrote:
Todd 3465 wrote:

So first I have to ask you a few questions:

Are you using the standard Paladin or an Archetype?

What race are you playing? There are many good racial feats in the game.

What is your party composition like? This will let us know if you are filling more than one role and if Teamwork feats are a good idea.

Are you playing an AP (Adventure Path)? If so which one? This will matter.

Are there any house rules we should know about? Core only etc...

If you answer these questions we can more accurately answer your original question.

Im a standard Paladin I am a Human, We have another fighter in our group which is a Monk we also have Druid, Clerk, Rogue, and Ranger.

I dont think we in an AP the DM probably would've told us and to look into it more so no and house rules non that he has broughten up yet.... im new like this is my first one ever so im pretty clueless to some stuff sorry =(

It's alright; everyone start's somewhere. I don't usually play paladin as I am not fond of alignment restriction so good on you for trying one. I can play Clerics or Druids no problem, but being confined to one alignment bugs me; especially coupled with the Code of Conduct.

What are the other party members gearing towards? Is the Cleric in the front, is the Rogue going for combat tricks, is the ranger a frontliner? I'd need to know that before I can recommend anything (and this info will help the others here with advice as well).

Me and The Monk are usually are the frontline fighters everyone ells kinda jumps in after us sometimes they stand back to cast some ranged spells or the ranger using his bow but if they are close they'll strike close the and the Rogue yea hes close combat too but last two sessions he didnt really do much except steal and sell stuff ;/


The Cleric and Druid go for Magicy type stuff using there spells in the back along with the Ranger using his boy while the three of us go upfront and fight us three being Me the Paladin, Monk, and Rogue, im building a Tank/ high Damage dealing Paladin I wanna take the damage for my teammates while still being able to smash my enemies to the ground and make them surrender, Im not completely sure what everyones builds are going for but the Ranger wants to get more into his Bow so hes gonna get more feats for crafting arrows and getting more consistent and or more damage for his shots, Cleric is going for more Spells, stronger healing more damage, Druid im not sure, Monk not sure, Rogue not sure.


Here are some sample builds I gave to another new Paladin player a little while ago. That particular player rolled up some gonzo stats but the general order of things will be the same.

Riberius wrote:
im building a Tank/ high Damage dealing Paladin I wanna take the damage for my teammates while still being able to smash my enemies to the ground and make them surrender

Tank, high damage, force enemies to surrender? I'd go for an Intimidate Paladin. Specific build will depend heavily on which sources and which rules are being used (for example, not all campaigns will be using Traits).


well not the force surrender thing that just kinda role play just suggest them to surrender


Riberius wrote:
The Cleric and Druid go for Magicy type stuff using there spells in the back along with the Ranger using his boy while the three of us go upfront and fight us three being Me the Paladin, Monk, and Rogue, im building a Tank/ high Damage dealing Paladin I wanna take the damage for my teammates while still being able to smash my enemies to the ground and make them surrender, Im not completely sure what everyones builds are going for but the Ranger wants to get more into his Bow so hes gonna get more feats for crafting arrows and getting more consistent and or more damage for his shots, Cleric is going for more Spells, stronger healing more damage, Druid im not sure, Monk not sure, Rogue not sure.

This would be my feat chain, based off of my own players, my experience, your build intention, and everyone else's comments:

Fortified Armor Training (Crits can almost always kill at level 1, and only get more scary as time goes on. Bucklers are cheap, and clerics have mending)
Power Attack. (Because damage)
Greater Mercy (An extra d6 every time you use a mercy to not remove a condition!?)
Extra Lay on hands (Those swift actions to heal brah...that is how you tank!)
Toughness (Hit Points)
Dodge (AC)
Mobility (More AC)
Tower Shield Proficiency (Also more AC)
Quick Draw (Draw them broken bucklers)
Fey Foundling (because more healing...just make sure to take at level 1)
Furious Focus (Because hitting for more damage is cool)

I don't play paladin so this may not be the best feat chain; nor did I list the feats in any particular order. Others can give you a better feat chain probably, but I hope mine coupled with the others helps.


MKtheDM wrote:

Toughness (Hit Points)

Dodge (AC)
Mobility (More AC)

Paladins will be hard-pressed to take all these feats. Toughness may not be needed with Fey Foundling + Greater Mercy, and there are almost always better uses of feats than Dodge and Mobility.

Quote:


Tower Shield Proficiency (Also more AC)

And a -2 to attack rolls.

Quote:


Quick Draw (Draw them broken bucklers)

With what hand? The one with the Tower Shield or the one with the weapon?

Quote:
Furious Focus (Because hitting for more damage is cool)

It doesn't do more damage, it just makes it so you don't take any Power Attack penalties on the first attack per round (i.e. the one most likely to hit). You're better off looking for ways to increase your to-hit with all attacks.


Another feat I like is Ultimate Mercy.
The ability to bring the dead back to life without a 5000gp price tag pretty great, and very fitting for a Paladin.
Also the prerequisites (19 Cha & Greater Mercy) are both things I'd want anyway.


Athaleon wrote:
MKtheDM wrote:

Toughness (Hit Points)

Dodge (AC)
Mobility (More AC)

Paladins will be hard-pressed to take all these feats. Toughness may not be needed with Fey Foundling + Greater Mercy, and there are almost always better uses of feats than Dodge and Mobility.

Quote:


Tower Shield Proficiency (Also more AC)

And a -2 to attack rolls.

Quote:


Quick Draw (Draw them broken bucklers)

With what hand? The one with the Tower Shield or the one with the weapon?

Quote:
Furious Focus (Because hitting for more damage is cool)
It doesn't do more damage, it just makes it so you don't take any Power Attack penalties on the first attack per round (i.e. the one most likely to hit). You're better off looking for ways to increase your to-hit with all attacks.

Yeah your right...this isn't the best chain. I'd say subtract the feats Athaleon said, and then use the rest of what I suggested.


I think the key to a Paladin's "tank-iness" is less the usual AC and HP route, and more so his/her high saves from Divine Grace, and the ability to self-heal as a swift action via Lay on Hands. So Charisma ends up being an important defensive statistic.

I'd therefore focus on the Extra Lay on Hands and Greater Mercy feats, plus Ultimate Mercy if you can swing the pre-requisites in the future. I also really like keeping one casting of Hero's Defiance (and an associated use of LOH) in the tank for emergencies.

That would also allow you to make your greatsword your primary weapon, rather than longsword and shield, as your defenses will centre on high saves and self-healing, while you go to town with the greatsword (getting higher base damage, plus a 1.5 multiplier on your Strength-based damage modifer, and your Power Attack modifier).

If you go that way, Power Attack and Furious Focus combine well. I also like Lunge at later levels, when enemies start getting bigger and dealing with reach attacks becomes a bigger issue.

Of the feats you initially said you wanted, I'd probably only recommend Weapon Focus as an option, and *possibly* Vital Strike (for those situations where you need to move, then attack).

I'd even want to try to retrain Toughness and Cleave if the DM allows (unless your HP sucks, in which case maybe keep Toughness). I don't like Cleave because it only works situationally when enemies are nice enough to stand next to one another... and it seems to become even less useful at higher levels, once you start getting iterative attacks.


As mentioned, you sadly missed out on the Fey Foundling train. Frankly you don't really need any particular feats though beyond Power Attack. My suggestion is just drop the sword and shield and focus on the greatsword. Pathfinder is a game which sadly doesn't really reward sword and board and nothing will compare with the damage you'll dish out with a greatsword and power attack.

Also not a feat, but make sure you always prepare Hero's Defiance as your level 1 spell. It's an absolute lifesaver and all paladins should have it known.

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