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Weakest / strongest / favorite Class of each Chassis


Pathfinder RPG General Discussion

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Liberty's Edge

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Chromantic Durgon <3 wrote:
Occultists can have full BAB on top of six level casting, super charged versions of spells as Spell like abilities, they get free enhancement bonuses to a physical stat, which can go higher than belts, they can get free resistance bonuses as well, meaning a lot of WBL is freed up, you get standard action Bane... they can make really amazing martials. And I'd argue the Silksworn archetype makes them the strongest 3/4 6th casting class of the set.

Trapping of the warrior panoply and silksworn archetype are pretty good, but speak more to those specific options than the class on the whole. My biggest problem with silksworn is the way occultist magic works. There always seems to be a number of good spells in the same school as the same level that you want to take, so you need to take implements multiple times to get the spells you want, as opposed to any other class that can just take all the good spells. High level it becomes less of a problem, but you still run into the problem all 6th level casters have, that it becomes hard to apply metamagic to spells, cause you can only boost a spell to 6th.

My main gripe with trappings of the warrior is that panoplies require you to be holding both implements to use the focus power, so you're stuck with sword and board if you want to have full BAB. That's not a terrible thing, it can provide good AC and make up two weapon fighting penalties if you go that route, but 2 handed and ranged occultists are still out of luck. Aside from that, my biggest issue is that most of their buffing, at least for the good options, it always seems to take a standard action. The reason why I find the other classes better is because they either don't have to buff, or can often do so as a swift action (eventually). Four of those 5 classes named are going to have accuracy as good, or better than straight full BAB with their class features, and alchemists typically target touch, or have mutagens to bump them back up to par when not throwing bombs.

Don't get me wrong, I like the Occultist. I'm actually planning on playing one in the next AP my group plays, but I've never seen an occultist perform anywhere near as well as those other classes. I also can't see them performing as well at high level when combat only last a few rounds. Maybe with mythic where you can gain an extra standard action for things like philosopher's touch.


Sir Thugsalot wrote:
The Shaman wrote:
Sir Thugsalot wrote:

Unchained monk: ...now that is some of the worst munchkin-bait nerf bait Paizo has put out in a long time. Peer under the hood, and you can really tell that the base class is too strong and they think they need to tame it. Flurry with temple swords? Not anymore. You better be in love in with your fists, because they're about all you're going to get to use now. Kiss goodbye your will save and your pseudo ITWF and GTWF attacks. Ooo! But I get full-BAB!

Big deal. You get your -10 iterative at 11th. Meanwhile, and ordinary monk has the same attack bonus with a far greater range of monk weapons (a one level dip of fighter[unarmed] opens up everything) and doesn't have to blow his Ki getting goodies that are free on his list but cost it on the unchained versions. I'm sorry, who was chained here?

Wait a minute. Why would the unchained monk not be able to flurry with a temple sword?

(Derp, I went...)

Yes: They do get to flurry with it. But they cannot Ki an *extra attack* with it -- and that's the monster nerf that inattentive players won't notice until they hit 4th if pursuing any strategy other than fist-fighting.

They can if they take the second feat of the ascetic style chain which let's them use a specific monk weapon as if it's unarmed, even style strikes such as flying kick.

Also you wouldn't use a temple sword, you would use Sansetsukon, a 1d10 19-20 crit weapon.

Even if they don't there is nothing stopping you from making the weapon attacks and then just kicking or headbutting the opponent, you don't need an empty hand to make unarmed attacks. Monks can use any part of their body to make that attack, you could cut off a monks arms and it would have no impact on their unarmed attack routine.

Unlike original monks, unchained get all the bonuses for using a weapon 2-handed.


Deighton Thrane wrote:
so you're stuck with sword and board if you want to have full BAB

Or Bow and Buckler, or Polearm and the Shield Brace feat.


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Deighton Thrane wrote:
Chromantic Durgon <3 wrote:
Occultists can have full BAB on top of six level casting, super charged versions of spells as Spell like abilities, they get free enhancement bonuses to a physical stat, which can go higher than belts, they can get free resistance bonuses as well, meaning a lot of WBL is freed up, you get standard action Bane... they can make really amazing martials. And I'd argue the Silksworn archetype makes them the strongest 3/4 6th casting class of the set.
Trapping of the warrior panoply and silksworn archetype are pretty good

Trappings of the warrior isn't just good, it's amazing, frankly too good. Full BAB on a 6th level caster broke the mold.

Silksworn is good and because they don't allow good options anymore it was banned.

I find vanilla Occultist slightly underpowered, Occult in general, it feels like there is a power seep in new content.

Some of the staples of today would be banned in a heart beat in paizos new material.


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You can take the same school more than once, I don't see this as a problem as only some of the resonant powers are worth having and you don't get enough focus powers to get all the good ones from each school anyway. So I wouldn't call that a problem. And since we are discussing within chassis a problem one can apply to all 6th casters isn't actually a problem to me.

As to holding em, I've seen people make arguments for a buckler to take the abjuration slot, unhindering sheild can help this further. The standard action thing is annoying I'll grant. That's why reach builds are favoured by melee occultists, buff and let them come to you being the philosophy.

I can see them doing less damage than inquisitors and war priests (and potentially alchemists in certain builds), I can't see the inquisitors or war priests having the same degree of flexibility outside of combat, between resonant powers, focus powers and more spells known than any spontaneous class, I honestly don't think you'll find a 6th level caster with a bigger box of tricks.

Oh also they have contingency on a very absuable spell list. Which always sticks out to me.

Shadow Lodge

NoTongue wrote:
They can if they take the second feat of the ascetic style chain which let's them use a specific monk weapon as if it's unarmed, even style strikes such as flying kick.
Since Ascetic Form isn't on their approved list of bonus feats, the unchained monk will have to abide by all prerequisites, meaning he'll be taking Weapon Focus, Ascetic Style, and finally Ascetic Form in order to accomplish with one monk weapon (get an extra Ki attack) what the PHB monk could do with any monk weapon.
Quote:
there is nothing stopping you from making the weapon attacks and then just kicking or headbutting the opponent
That implies proximity to the enemy, which is something we may not want if we're a Zen or a Sohei or a thrower.
Quote:
Unlike original monks, unchained get all the bonuses for using a weapon 2-handed.

"Good news, everyone! We're taking away extra Ki attacks with monk weapons, but in exchange we're giving you a few additional points of damage for each of the ones you have left. Just think: if you were STR:26, you could get four more points of damage two-handing!"

"It's the deal of the century, folks!"

<DC35 Mass suggestion by arch-devil suckers thousands>


NoTongue wrote:


Silksworn is good and because they don't allow good options anymore it was banned.

Silksworn is my single favorite archetype in the entire game, but I will say, the bonus from Silksworn Arcana should have been spread out, perhaps at level 8 and 16, rather than all at 16.

Quote:


I find vanilla Occultist slightly underpowered, Occult in general, it feels like there is a power seep in new content.

Some of the staples of today would be banned in a heart beat in paizos new material.

totally agree, which is why I'm always so boggled when people say that Occult has been banned in their game for being OP... like really?

Hunter, Summoner, Druid > Spiritualist as pet classes. Spiritualist is still arguably my favorite and good, but nevertheless

Mesmerist is encouraged to be a caster focused class but not given the resources to make it sustainable, and then toted as the reverse bard. The issue being they have to deal with SR and saves, which bards don't.

Psychic, is a 9th level spontaneous caster, so if you can handle a witch and a wizard you should be okay with them. They're weaker than sorcs too if you ask me.

And Kineticist is confusing but not actually OP.

The Occultist is the only one that ever really brakes the mold, and it didn't at release, its only now it has trappings and Silksworn.


Sir Thugsalot wrote:
The Shaman wrote:
Sir Thugsalot wrote:

Unchained monk: ...now that is some of the worst munchkin-bait nerf bait Paizo has put out in a long time. Peer under the hood, and you can really tell that the base class is too strong and they think they need to tame it. Flurry with temple swords? Not anymore. You better be in love in with your fists, because they're about all you're going to get to use now. Kiss goodbye your will save and your pseudo ITWF and GTWF attacks. Ooo! But I get full-BAB!

Big deal. You get your -10 iterative at 11th. Meanwhile, and ordinary monk has the same attack bonus with a far greater range of monk weapons (a one level dip of fighter[unarmed] opens up everything) and doesn't have to blow his Ki getting goodies that are free on his list but cost it on the unchained versions. I'm sorry, who was chained here?

Wait a minute. Why would the unchained monk not be able to flurry with a temple sword?

(Derp, I went...)

Yes: They do get to flurry with it. But they cannot Ki an *extra attack* with it -- and that's the monster nerf that inattentive players won't notice until they hit 4th if pursuing any strategy other than fist-fighting.

Eh, I dunno. "Monster nerf" might be overstating it a tad. Certainly not as strong in isolation.

Shadow Lodge

blahpers wrote:
"Monster nerf" might be overstating it a tad.

Enjoying an extra attack on-demand is one of the best possible of all class abilities.

-- But let's split the difference and label losing it a bestial nerf.


Sir Thugsalot wrote:
blahpers wrote:
"Monster nerf" might be overstating it a tad.

Enjoying an extra attack on-demand is one of the best possible of all class abilities.

-- But let's split the difference and label losing it a bestial nerf.

-Spells

-Phantoms
-Eidolans
-Animal Companions
-Unchained Flurry of Blows
-Spell Combat
-Spell Strike
-Alchemical Bombs
-A Mystery + Revelations
-A familiar

to list a few of the many, many, many class features, which I would say are easily more powerful than One extra attack, to be tacked onto a specific full round action, which eats you swift action and consumes a limited resource (ki pool).

Its nice, it definitely isn't

Quote:
one of the best possible of all class abilities

Shadow Lodge

I think they meant best class features for the Monk.

Along the lines of "it is one of the best of the Monk's class features".


I wouldn't even say that was true though, Flurry of Blows, certain Ki Powers (abundant step, Qinggong), Certain style strikes (flying kick) all bring more to the class.

Like I said, one extra attack at the cost of a swift action only when flurrying, is nice, but it really isn't class defining.


Sir Thugsalot wrote:
NoTongue wrote:
They can if they take the second feat of the ascetic style chain which let's them use a specific monk weapon as if it's unarmed, even style strikes such as flying kick.
Since Ascetic Form isn't on their approved list of bonus feats, the unchained monk will have to abide by all prerequisites, meaning he'll be taking Weapon Focus, Ascetic Style, and finally Ascetic Form in order to accomplish with one monk weapon (get an extra Ki attack) what the PHB monk could do with any monk weapon.
Quote:
there is nothing stopping you from making the weapon attacks and then just kicking or headbutting the opponent
That implies proximity to the enemy, which is something we may not want if we're a Zen or a Sohei or a thrower.
Quote:
Unlike original monks, unchained get all the bonuses for using a weapon 2-handed.

"Good news, everyone! We're taking away extra Ki attacks with monk weapons, but in exchange we're giving you a few additional points of damage for each of the ones you have left. Just think: if you were STR:26, you could get four more points of damage two-handing!"

"It's the deal of the century, folks!"

<DC35 Mass suggestion by arch-devil suckers thousands>

What 3 feats would your unarmed monk take that would compete with mine

Weapon focus is a good feat in it's own right and your wording it as of that's the only thing the ascetic style feat lets you do.

You are going on about the power of multiple attacks and you don't think 4 extra damage on every one of them is substantial. Never mind that you've left power attack and superior crit range out of the equation.

Melee weapons are also cheaper to enchant and it's easier to bypass specific DR with them.

That you brought ranged weaponry into it when you where arguing unarmed makes it feel as if you are arguing for the sake of arguing.


Sir Thugsalot wrote:
blahpers wrote:
"Monster nerf" might be overstating it a tad.

Enjoying an extra attack on-demand is one of the best possible of all class abilities.

-- But let's split the difference and label losing it a bestial nerf.

They can still get an extra attack, but it is unarmed. On one hand,this means no weapon bonuses, on the other - the full BAB and no TWF penalties help with landing the attack, and style strike can bring some riders on it. So yes, that component of flurry was nerfed - but I personally do not see it as a big nerf to the FoB feature itself and, considering the extra attack bonuses, thin it is stronger than before. Style strikes, which require an unarmed attack, are how the UMonk can do a flurry while moving without committing to a single style, which iirc the core monk simply could not do. Pummeling charge, which is the other option, requires unarmed strikes as well, locked you into a style chain and also had several prerequisites, so if anything it was an even more limiting option.

It is harder to be a pure weaponmaster UMonk than an unarmed or mixed one, although ascetic style or ki focus weapons help with that, just as they do with the core monk.

Shadow Lodge

NoTongue wrote:
What 3 feats would your unarmed monk take that would compete with mine?

But I am not making an unarmed monk.


Sir Thugsalot wrote:
blahpers wrote:
"Monster nerf" might be overstating it a tad.

Enjoying an extra attack on-demand is one of the best possible of all class abilities.

-- But let's split the difference and label losing it a bestial nerf.

I hope you have a better imagination than "one more hit per turn" when it comes to great class abilities. : )

Shadow Lodge

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Well we are talking martials with dumped INT here.

-- You can't expect too much.

Shadow Lodge

Like some other folks I'm going to bow out of the "power" discussion and just talk about what I like - and don't like.

Least Favorite

Full BAB, no spells: Fighter or Gunslinger. I have a hard time getting over the Fighter's relative lack of skill points. That said, with new support the combat options are more fun, and I'm not all that interested in the Gunslinger's pew pew pew shtick.
Full BAB, 4th spells: Ranger. Which is funny because it used to be my favourite, but I've come to dislike having to select favoured enemy and favoured terrain. There's archetypes for that, but it's definitely soured me on the class a little.
3/4 BAB, no or 4th casting: Rogue. Not that I think it's terrible, but now that we've got the objectively better Unchained Rogue, it's just pointless. Dishonourable mention to the stalker vigilante - strikes me as a little too invested in ambush tactics for a game where your party members might not play along.
3/4 BAB, 6th casting: Mesmerist. Just does not seem to work as well as a bard.
3/4 BAB, 9th casting: Cleric. No skills, and bland compared to the other options.
1/2 BAB, 9th casting: Psychic. Maybe I'm just not into mind control.

Favorite

Full BAB, no spells: Three way tie between Barbarian, Slayer, and Unchained Monk. Barbarian for the beat-downs, slayer for the best balance between combat and utility, and monk for mobility and style.
Full BAB, 4th spells: Paladin or Bloodrager. I know this is half the category, but I can't pick. You've got a righteous smite/tank/heal on the one hand and a magical rage machine on the other.
3/4 BAB, no or 4th casting: Kineticist. Gotta get me some elemental theming. Runner-ups Monk (some of the archetypes do neat stuff that Unchained can't) and Unchained Rogue (it works, and it fills a niche that I appreciate).
3/4 BAB, 6th casting: Inquisitor or Occultist. This is a hard category since I like most of them, but these are the only two classes in it that I've wanted to play repeatedly.
3/4 BAB, 9th casting: Druid. Such wild shape. Very flavour. Wow.
1/2 BAB, 9th casting: Wizard, though that might change if I get more experience with the Arcanist. It's the Int-based casting (skills!) combined with dat spell list.


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Ooo least favourite
Good idea

Least favourite

full BAB, no spells: Gunslinger, to me making a class simply to enable a single niche fighting style, necessitated by the fact the rules for said fighting are so obtuse they're unplayable is a design failure. Not to mention the class features are boring and many people don't take the class beyond level 5 for that reason.
full BAB, 4th spells: Paladins, alignment lock bothers me, also find their flavour insipid.
3/4 BAB, no spells: chained rogue, mostly because I see people picking it and the getting frustrated by how out performed they feel.
3/4 BAB, 4th spells: medium, there's just so many other fun classes in this category >.>
3/4 BAB, 6th spells: summoner I find the fact Paizo seemed oblivious to how ahead of the curve they were when they made, super annoying.
3/4 BAB, 9th spells: clerics, boring in the class feature department, often pressured into being a heal bot, can't think of a niche I wouldn't rather fill as an oracle
1/2 BAB, 9th spells: wizard, particularly pact wizard, because why not give them everything?

Liberty's Edge

Weirdo wrote:

Like some other folks I'm going to bow out of the "power" discussion and just talk about what I like - and don't like.

I was gonna do this. I'll break this down to 'Least Exciting' vs 'Most Exciting', because I can't claim I've had enough experience with everything.

Least Exciting

Full BAB, no spells: Gunslinger. A class that's good for 5-level dips and going into other stuff sounds cool on paper, but it's practically the only way to use guns. Guns in general are just very linear and very quickly jump from "way too lousy" to "way too good".
Full BAB, 4th spells: Ranger. I hate favored enemy, and I hate the archetypes even more.
3/4 BAB, no or 4th casting: Vanilla rogue. My first attempt at a 3.5 Character was a knife throwing rogue. Ahahahaha, how young and foolish I was. Class is a lure to beginners then tempts them to stand in the middle of enemy packs to get flanking. Awful survivability on top of that, nope nope nope.
3/4 BAB, 6th casting: Part of me wants to say Inquisitor for having too much of everything but really I'm just complaining because Warpriests are still stuck with 2+Int skills. So I'll give it to caster Vigilantes for feeling so clumsy and incomplete. Otherwise, this gishy chassis is too much fun and there isn't one that doesn't interest me.
3/4 BAB, 9th casting: Shaman. I love it, in theory, and I love juggling/preparing resources. ...this is just too much for me to juggle and prepare.
1/2 BAB, 9th casting: Sorcerer. Was a toss-up between this and the Psychic, but concluded that the Sorcerer just disappoints me much more. Every decision made with that class feels painful. The saving grace for me is bloodline mutations.

Most Exciting

Full BAB, no spells: Would have said barb in the past, but these days it's the fighter. U-monk gets a mention for dips but AWT, prestige class (Heritor Knight/Sanguine Angel) and my feat addiction put Fighter ahead of the others.
Full BAB, 4th spells: Toss-up between Bloodrager and Paladin. The rager surprisingly versatile, though bloodlines are still very hit-or-miss. Paladins just have a very juicy package, and I love the code. Only catch is that the class really feels the lack of feats.
3/4 BAB, no or 4th casting: I have both a Kineticist and Medium in upcoming campaigns, not sure which excites me more. The latter feels more reliant on finding the right game and GM, though.
3/4 BAB, 6th casting: Hardest choice in the system. Warpriest and Investigator are my most played classes, The Occultist has the best design from my perspective, and the Bard is a class I want to see in every game I'm in. The magus is next on my to-do list with rime spell fun... I think the bard wins because it makes everyone feel good.
3/4 BAB, 9th casting: Clerics have so many little variances between deity now. It takes much more work than Oracles but they can be pretty versatile now, and that's sweet. My only beef is that APs can feel designed around having access to this entire spell list. Would like Oracles more if this weren't the case, even if it's kinda the Cleric's fault.
1/2 BAB, 9th casting: I love the Arcanist's design, hate its spells per day. Wizard wins for the ability to look at the upcoming schedule, and start the day with a laundry list of long-duration buffs tailored to the party.


I'll join in on the "least favorite"

1.0. 0 Gunslinger. It's a class with damage, and not a lot else. I'm not a huge fan of guns in my fantasy. It's pretty much a 5-level class only and I don't really love multiclassing.

1.0, 4 Ranger. I don't like being signficantly more effective against certain opponents or in certain places, and don't like managing pets.

3/4, 0 Rogue. Other people do what you do better than you do, for the most part, and are more fun to boot.

3/4, 6 Summoner. I don't like the flavor, don't like managing pets, and it's simultaneously way too powerful and way too easy to build a bad one.

3/4, 9 Cleric. Not a fan of prepared casting, and beyond spells/gear/feats, all your choices are made at character generation.

1/2, 9 Wizard. The most powerful class, but not remotely fun for me to play.

Shadow Lodge

The Dandy Lion wrote:
3/4 BAB, no or 4th casting: I have both a Kineticist and Medium in upcoming campaigns, not sure which excites me more. The latter feels more reliant on finding the right game and GM, though.

Yeah, I find the Medium interesting and would like to try one, but it seems like you'd need a game where (1) you can predict which spirit is going to be most useful for the day and (2) you can reliably access your choice of spirit, or at minimum your second choice.


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Darigaaz the Igniter wrote:

Going for just favorites

Full BAB, no spells: Barbarian, honorable mention to Slayer
Full BAB, 4th spells: Paladin
3/4 BAB, no casting: Monk with some of the better archetypes, Ninja in second place
3/4 BAB, 4th casting: skipping this one
3/4 BAB, 6th casting: Too many good choices. Inquisitor, Bard, Alchemist for top 3
3/4 BAB, 9th casting: Druid, runner up being Oracle
1/2 BAB, 9th casting: Witch because hexes let me go all day.

Jumping on the least favorites bandwagon:

Full BAB, no spells: Fighter. You can't make a good one without advanced armor/weapon training; which is only available in an obscure softback supplement instead of the main line of hardbacks.
Full BAB, 4th spells: Bloodrager. It's a barbarian... without rage powers, less hp, and some really minor casting. I don't get the appeal.
3/4 BAB, no casting/4th casting: Rogue. I just can't understand why people keep gravitating to this class when better options are available.
3/4 BAB, 6th casting: Warpriest. Design-wise this fails to fill the niche it was supposed to fill and instead crowds a niche that was already filled.
3/4 BAB, 9th casting: Shaman
1/2 BAB, 9th casting: Wizard. I'm sick of the hype, I'm sick of Schrodinger wizards, and I have never seen a campaign with enough downtime to take advantage of the wizard's supposed strengths. Being a prepared caster with a limited spell selection doesn't help it either, especially when you suck at predicting what spells to pick each day and don't have wide access to utility scrolls and wands (see downtime issues).

Sovereign Court

Darigaaz the Igniter wrote:

3/4 BAB, no casting/4th casting: Rogue. I just can't understand why people keep gravitating to this class when better options are available.

Because there -are- no better options available.

It's that simple.

Now, yes, you can find classes that do parts of what the rogue does better than the rogue, but that's true of almost every class.

What you are saying is no different than "I can't understand why people play a (Insert ANY non-9th level caster) when there are better options available."

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

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When it comes to the rogue, I think the dream is often doing 66d6 damage per round at 20th level. Over and over and over again. Sure, you're more likely to do 22d6 or 44d6, but that's still an awful lot of dice to roll.

And that's not counting AoOs. Some rogue talents grant AoOs under special circumstances when no one else would.

It takes a complacent GM to do that (low AC, high hit point targets lacking certain immunities), but it's the job of the GM to design encounters that are fun and challenging for the PCs.

Also, a couple rogue talents and a feat net you Quickened true strikes that can help in the clutch. Counting Rogue Talents, rogues can get 15 or more feats over a 20 level career, so they can invest in at least a few different combat styles if they want, such as archery AND two weapon fighting, plus adding in some general feats, like Combat Reflexes, Improved Initiative, Iron Will, Quick Draw, Toughness, Weapon Finesse, etc. A couple levels in Fighter net some weapons and armor, a bump in Fortitude saves, and an eventual BAB of +16, so they can make 7 attacks of 10d6 instead of 6 attacks of 11d6.

They might not be the best, but they can be very versatile.

Also, a rogue in the party can encourage team work, such as setting up flanking buddies or having a spellcaster granting the rogue greater invisibility or teleporting him into the fray so he can use is full attack.

Sovereign Court

It doesn't require a complacent GM.... It simply requires a GM who doesn't intentionally try to screw over the players.

Immunity to sneak attacks or flanking simply is -not- that common. Sure it exists, but it is not all over the place.

Also, average armor class at CR 20 is 36.

At level 20, a rogue is going to likely be at least +32 before flanking and buffs. And soon as the first hit lands, debilitating injury kicks in and drops the AC by 8.

So, yes, the round after they move into flank, going for a full attack, they are going to be in don't roll a one land for their top 4 and still +22 on the worst attack on each hand.

So, needing a 6.

This is not counting any buffs on either side.


1/1 BAB, No casting

  • Weakest: Tie between Swashbuckler and Fighter archetypes that trade out Weapon Training (and do not have the wording to get equivalent functionality for feat and Advanced Weapon Training prerequisites), except for Martial Master
  • Strongest: Fighter with no archetype and archetypes that keep Weapon Training (or at least have the wording to get equivalent functionality for feat and Advanced Weapon Training prerequisites)
  • Hardest to build/use: Fighter (so many options, so many traps, so many sources to wade through)
  • Easiest to build/use: Unchained Barbarian (just Rage and do your thing)
  • Least favorite: Paladin/Antipaladin archetypes that trade out spellcasting (see Paladin/Antipaladin entry under 1/1 BAB, 4/9 casting)
  • Favorite: Fighter for full-classing (such juicy rewards if you do manage to pull together a good set of options), or Swashbuckler for dipping

1/1 BAB, 4/9 casting
  • Weakest: Child of Acavna and Amaznen Fighter (trades out all Weapon Training and many feats, gets inferior spellcasting relative to a Magus, and gets inferior armored spellcasting relative to a Magus -- just play a Myrmidarch Magus instead)
  • Strongest: Bloodrager overall (also really good for dipping); Paladin/Antipaladin and Ranger situationally
  • Hardest to build/use: Child of Acavna and Amaznen Fighter (so many options, so many traps, so many sources to wade through, and you don't get most of the good stuff a real Fighter gets)
  • Easiest to build/use: Bloodrager overall; Paladin/Antipaladin and Ranger situationally
  • Least favorite: Paladin/Antipaladin (the restriction to Lawful Good AND Chaotic Evil for a base class just doesn't make sense, and recent archetypes have only significantly alleviated this on the Antipaladin side) -- this should have been a set of prestige classes, not a base class (and alternate class)
  • Favorite: Bloodrager

3/4 BAB, No casting
  • Weakest: Brute Vigilante (you're the Hulk, but do a terrible job of it); runner-up Sleuth Investigator (what, traded out Alchemy?)
  • Strongest: Classic Monk with archetypes that make certain types of attack actually work, that aren't available with Unchained Monk (for instance, Tetori)
  • Hardest to build/use: Classic Rogue (good luck putting together a build and controlling your situation to pull off your Sneak Attack, including convincing your fellow PCs to use the necessary teamwork, never mind Teamwork Feats)
  • Easiest to build/use: Classic Monk with archetypes that make certain types of attack actually work, that aren't available with Unchained Monk (for instance, Tetori)
  • Least favorite: Monk of the Healing Hand (Worst. Capstone. Ever.); close runner-up Brute Vigilante (see above)
  • Favorite: Unchained Rogue (still not great, but gets points for improving on Classic Rogue while maintaining archetype compatibility)

3/4 BAB, 4/9 casting and Kinetocasting
  • Weakest: Storyteller Medium (you get to be a Bard, only worse)
  • Strongest: Spirit Dancer Medium (not the greatest with your Spirits, but at least you can change to another one fairly quickly if you need to)
  • Hardest to build/use: Kineticist (seems like you need a PhD in Pathfinder to build this properly)
  • Easiest to build/use: Spirit Dancer Medium (see above)
  • Least favorite: Storyteller Medium (see above)
  • Favorite: Where's my Harrowed Medium?

3/4 BAB, 6/9 casting
  • Weakest: Warpriest (but still pretty good if you can somehow get over the lack of skill ranks)
  • Strongest: Magus (67% Fighter and 67% Wizard, and greater than the sum of the parts -- 'nuff said); runner-up Summoner (especially Master Summoner and Synthesist Summoner), but really almost everything on this chassis is a runner-up for Strongest
  • Hardest to build/use: Magus (that's an awful lot of moving parts -- no wonder an awful lot of people gravitate into a handful of cookie-cutter builds, when so much more is possible)
  • Easiest to build/use: Warpriest (at least you get a decent number of bonus feats)
  • Least favorite: Inquisitor in concept (great chassis, but the concept just doesn't make sense as a base class, and should be a prestige class); runner-up Unchained Summoner (several good ideas, but why did they have to make the Eidolon options so limited?)
  • Favorite: Inquisitor in execution (wouldn't want to get rid of the chassis because of the above problem -- instead, remix it with Warpriest to make what the Cleric should have been)

3/4 BAB, 9/9 casting
  • Weakest: Cloistered Cleric (why couldn't they have just converted the D&D 3.5 Cloistered Cleric?)
  • Strongest: Cleric overall (out-of-the-box full access to the 2nd best spell list in the game), Oracle specialized (mysteries are awesome), Shaman for endurance (Hexes for the win)
  • Hardest to build/use: Shaman (seems you need a PhD in Pathfinder to build this)
  • Easiest to build/use: Oracle (Mysteries give so much flexibility)
  • Least favorite: Cleric (very powerful, but tends to be boring)
  • Favorite: Oracle (see above)

1/2 BAB, 9/9 casting
  • Weakest: White-Haired Witch (what, no Hexes, replaced by a 1/2 BAB non-Touch attack?)
  • Strongest: Arcanist for maximum versatility (wish they would make a divine equivalent), Witch for endurance (Hexes for the win)
  • Hardest to build/use: Sorcerer (by the basic class features, this should be the easiest, but the Bloodline organization is a mess, and has so many trap options)
  • Easiest to build/use: Wizard (surprisingly simple)
  • Least favorite: Wizard (very powerful, but tends to be boring)
  • Favorite: Witch (even though Patrons aren't as fleshed out as they should be, they give quite a lot of versatility, and Hexes give more, and actually has some pretty good archetypes -- just wish they had more options for Good Witches)

Now I've stayed up way too late doing this . . . .


Ooh, can I play?

Favorites:

Full BAB, no spellcasting:
Slayer EDIT: or Fighter. I love the versatility with Feats

Full BAB, 4th-level spellcasting:
Ranger

3/4 BAB, no spellcasting:
Unchained Rogue

3/4 BAB, 6th-level spellcasting:
Oh man... Everyone is so right... Paizo makes such good classes in this category... Gotta give it to the Bard though.

3/4 BAB, 9th-level spellcasting:
Oracle

1/2 BAB, 9th-level spellcasting:
Sorcerer, all day, everyday (psst, I prefer Spontaneous casting!)

And if you thought that was controversial, now for the least favorites!

Full BAB, no casting:
Barbarian (to be fair, only chained. I absolutely despised the old rage mechanic... Which is why my next category is given to...)

Full BAB, 4/9 casting:
Bloodrager. Only because I hate rage. Urban is coolish.

3/4 BAB, no casting:
Vigilante. I like some archetypes, but base... Nah.

3/4 BAB, 6/9 casting:
Hmmm.... Hmmm... Oh wait. Summoner. That was easy.

3/4 BAB, 9/9 casting:
Cleric, but they're all cool.

1/2 BAB, 9/9 casting:
Hahahaha! Oh wait, seriously? Oh, Wizard. I don't like you. I couldn't care less about how powerful you are, and I hate that everything is compared to you. Survive to level 3 without a bunch of meat shields around you, ya jerk.


least favourite:
full, 0: Unchained Barbarian. Because I will pretty much never take simplicity over options
full, 4: Probably ranger since it's main draw is also accessible through Slayer combined with not really thinking of it as a spellcaster
3/4, 0: Rogue, due to its obsolescence problem.
3/4, 6: Alcemists are always a pain without archetyping since everything I have is either biochemist or physical chemist and none are both.
3/4, 9: Druid. Come back when you don't have ridiculous restrictions.
1/2, 9: Witch. The massive power discrepancy within their only class feature makes it too much of a single good build.

favourite:
full,0: Brawler, because feats on demand is a cool trick.
full,4: Paladin. one of the best all-round tanks
3/4, 0: chained monk for fun with archetypes. Not counting archetypes, probably Unchained Rogue
3/4, 6: magus. Sword dual-wield spell has been my most preferable style in fantasy, and it's the only core class to pull it off.
3/4, 9: Oracle. Plenty of great stuff in the revelations.
1/2, 9: Arcanist. The wizard, if it had class features.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Weakest:
Full BAB, no spells: Warrior
3/4 BAB, no casting: Aristocrat


2 people marked this as a favorite.
deuxhero wrote:

Weakest:

Full BAB, no spells: Warrior
3/4 BAB, no casting: Aristocrat

I jokingly made an Aristocrat for Hells Rebels and was surprised by how useful he was without any class features.

Well I actually made a Vigilante who pretended to be a hired Bodyguard for the aristocrat who was his twin brother so they switched places from time to time, but sometimes I actually was playing the aristocrat.

They have decent proficiencies at least.


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I wrote:

{. . .}

3/4 BAB, 6/9 casting
  • Weakest: Warpriest (but still pretty good if you can somehow get over the lack of skill ranks)
    {. . .}

Hold the presses. I forgot about Greensting Slayer Magus. Now THAT is a bad 3/4 BAB, 6/9 casting archetype. Give up the regular Arcane Pool abilities in exchange for a Sneak Attack that you still have to do all the setup for it that a Rogue would, and your Arcane Pool expenditure is wasted if you miss? Bleah.

Lantern Lodge

I find it odd everyone who rates the swashbuckler as a terrible class. They are one of the best martial classes. More options / build choices doesn't mean a superior class. If a martial is sitting at the table you want them to kill things quickly while being able to take a few hits. The swashbucklers excells at this (they are tanky by avoiding hits due to high AC, reflex, and parry). In a game where you want to be the best at your niche in a 4-6 player party, having more options at the cost of focus is actually a bad thing in my opinion.

Even when dipping swashbuckler its hard to not stay with it because every level ALL your attacks are dealing +1 damage. No other class does that. Sure it is precision but you should be power attacking as well and against creatures immune to precision you will still deal respectable damage.

Yes archetypes have neutered it somewhat but weapon training still keeps the class an attractive option.


^Unfortunately, the way Swashbuckler's Weapon Training is worded, it doesn't function as Fighter's Weapon Training (even though really it should), and thus doesn't unlock things that need the Fighter's Weapon Training as a prerequisite (including Advanced Weapon Training and Weapon Mastery feats).

Also, having a bad Fortitude Save hurts -- it is possible to compensate for this, but that is a tax on Swashbucklers.

Lantern Lodge

UnArcaneElection wrote:

^Unfortunately, the way Swashbuckler's Weapon Training is worded, it doesn't function as Fighter's Weapon Training (even though really it should)

You're definitely right and I'd wish they'd erratta this. But I think the reason they don't is specifically because the Swashbuckler is powerful as is. That said, many of those feats are traps. If melee characters would simply focus on dealing damage>ac/saves>hp feats rather than fancy tricks(like trip or disarm) or other options they will be more effective.


Similar to how the Molthune Arsenal Chaplain solves a lot of the problems of the Warpriest not inheriting any of the fixes to the Fighter that postdate the ACG, you could fix a lot of the problems with the Swashbuckler with an archetype that gives it actual weapon training in lieu of ersatz weapon training.

Additionally, something to fix the class's terrible saves would be nice. The Virtuous Bravo Paladin just underlines how terrible Charmed Life is next to something like Divine Grace.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Pawns Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

A lot less love for Alchemist on here than I expected. Granted I look at these from a PFS-centric view, but It's my favorite at any chassis, purely based on its massive versatility.

A 10th level vanilla alchemist does big damage targeting touch from across the battlefield, and can hit multiple enemies at once. It can identify whatever it's fighting and tailor damage type, including against incorporeal. It can leave spell slots open and prepare needed extracts in a short amount of time, can be a viable healer/restorer, can provide buffs before battle, speaks a bunch of languages, and can be a viable rogue replacement all at the same time.


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I really like Alchemists its just unfortunate that they find themselves occupying what is generally considered pathfinders sweet spot of class design and have to compete with most of the most popular classes.

Particularly, Investigators, Inquisitors, Occultists and Bards are all very powerful and interesting classes which occupy the same chassis as Alchemists and are all popular.


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kaisc006 wrote:

I find it odd everyone who rates the swashbuckler as a terrible class. They are one of the best martial classes. More options / build choices doesn't mean a superior class. If a martial is sitting at the table you want them to kill things quickly while being able to take a few hits. The swashbucklers excells at this (they are tanky by avoiding hits due to high AC, reflex, and parry). In a game where you want to be the best at your niche in a 4-6 player party, having more options at the cost of focus is actually a bad thing in my opinion.

Even when dipping swashbuckler its hard to not stay with it because every level ALL your attacks are dealing +1 damage. No other class does that. Sure it is precision but you should be power attacking as well and against creatures immune to precision you will still deal respectable damage.

Yes archetypes have neutered it somewhat but weapon training still keeps the class an attractive option.

From another thread this was my explanation:

Quote:

First, they're front line fighters with a weak fort save. On the front line you're more likely to be hit by poison etc.

They're more or less required to use a single one-handed or light weapon with a decent crit range (OK, you could make a str-based swashbuckler who carries a heavy pick and dresses in full plate armor, but that gets people's hackles up.) That's a fairly tight restriction on the build. It also limits the usefulness of power attack or piranha strike to improve damage and makes sure they stay a step behind the other full BAB types in DPR. Not a huge step but it's there.

They suffer from swift/immediate action congestion. Riposte, charmed life and menacing swordplay are all class features you'd like to use, but doing so in the same round isn't happening.

In the end they don't have the love that near a decade of material created for the barbarian and fighter has produced. They can make use of some of that but not all - the barbarian, fighter, and some classes which get to steal shticks from those two have an advantage.

Shadow Lodge

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Chromantic Durgon <3 wrote:

I really like Alchemists its just unfortunate that they find themselves occupying what is generally considered pathfinders sweet spot of class design and have to compete with most of the most popular classes.

Particularly, Investigators, Inquisitors, Occultists and Bards are all very powerful and interesting classes which occupy the same chassis as Alchemists and are all popular.

I think this is partly correct. I like alchemists better than pretty much any option in the other categories that didn't make my favourites list, and it even competes pretty well with my favourites in some of the other categories (for example, I like the alchemist about as much as either the slayer or the wizard). But the 6-level casters are just so good that the alchemist just barely makes my top five in the category (behind inquisitor and occultist and around the same as bard and hunter).

On the other hand, I am a little surprised by the lack of variation in that category. I went and tallied up responses and found that the bard won handily with 6.5 votes, Inquisitor second at 4 and occultist third at 2.5.

Other observations:


  • 1/1 no casting: While most agree that the barbarian is the strongest, followed by the gunslinger, the fighter easily wins for most liked.
  • 1/1 4th casting: Bloodrager and paladin neck and neck for strongest and most liked. Ranger, despite several fans, is overall considered weakest and most disliked.
  • 3/4 no casting: Kineticist wins hands down. Interestingly, despite rogue being the most disliked and weakest, unchained rogue gets second place for most liked.
  • 3/4 6th level casting: As mentioned, bard has a strong lead. Summoner gets both strongest and most disliked.
  • 3/4 9th level casting: Oracle wins handily, followed by druid. Cleric and shaman overall disliked; the cleric is more polarizing.
  • 1/2 9th level casting: Witch is the clear leader for most liked. Runner-up is Arcanist, despite also being generally considered weakest. While the wizard is universally considered strongest, it's also polarizing, with as many people disliking it as liking it.


Thanks Weirdo :) those are some interesting Facts

suprised to see the bard is so high up there.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Favorite person with goblin avatar Weirdo.

Shadow Lodge

Aw, shucks. :)

Chromantic Durgon <3 wrote:
suprised to see the bard is so high up there.

I'm not surprised to see that it's one of the better liked classes in that category - but I'm surprised that it's 50% ahead of the next runner up, and that Alchemist and Investigator didn't get more attention. I've seen a lot of love for both alchemical classes on the boards. Alchemist did at least get two mentions, but one of them was a 3-way tie and the other was a 4-way tie, so not a lot of weight there.

It's possible this is an unrepresentative sample.


There's been other threads where people rated their favourite classes. One I remember divided them into various categories which included support - the bard was about twice as well liked as the next most in that category.


Weirdo wrote:


I'm not surprised to see that it's one of the better liked classes in that category - but I'm surprised that it's 50% ahead of the next runner up

I guess I'm always a bit taken a back by how popular the bard is.

Is it fun? Yes
Is it good in a party? Yes
Is it full of interesting options for makings lots of different exciting bard builds? I'd say no, not without archetypes, which is why I don't really get why so many people are enamored with them. I always look at the class and feel like there is only really one thing to do with the class features you're given. Compared with an Occultist or an Alchemist.

Quote:


and that Alchemist and Investigator didn't get more attention. I've seen a lot of love for both alchemical classes on the boards. Alchemist did at least get two mentions, but one of them was a 3-way tie and the other was a 4-way tie, so not a lot of weight there.

It's possible this is an unrepresentative sample.

I think it probably is unrepresentative because I am sure I've entered a number of threads which start with the OP saying the alchemist is their favorite class.


Chromantic Durgon <3 wrote:

I guess I'm always a bit taken a back by how popular the bard is.

Is it fun? Yes
Is it good in a party? Yes
Is it full of interesting options for makings lots of different exciting bard builds? I'd say no, not without archetypes, which is why I don't really get why so many people are enamored with them. I always look at the class and feel like there is only really one thing to do with the class features you're given. Compared with an Occultist or an Alchemist.

I can only speak for myself when I say this, but I always keep in mind the existence of archetypes when I determine my favorite class. I adore the bard because it is not a class that has all the power on its own, but serves as a force multiplier. It represents the ideal role I enjoy taking in the party, getting my jollies while making other people shine.

Besides, who doesn't want to have approximate knowledge of many things? Being able to charm and maneuver yourself through most social situations? Being the Migeul to your Tulio? Not this guy.


I think weakest/strongest is tricky depending on floors, ceilings, and averages. So I'll just list favorite.
1/1 No casting: Fighter (barely edging out cavalier)
1/1 4th: Paladin
3/4 No casting: Rogue
3/4 6th: Bard
3/4 9th: Cleric
1/2 9th: Wizard

Bard is the best class.


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To keep with the lists...

Weakest

  • 1.0/0: Swashbuckler. Cool concept, absolutely horrendous design. Tying everything into eating up their swift actions could not have been a bigger mistake for this class.

  • 1.0/4: Child of Acavna and Amaznen. This is honestly a complete joke. Losing literally every fighter class feature for bloodrager spellcasting...when you could just play a bloodrager? Who thought this was acceptable?

  • 0.75/0: Core Monk. It's bad, fam.

  • 0.75/4: Medium is pretty weak. Haunts are seeing a lot of use, however, so I think there is a place for them. But as a baseline they're kinda weak.

  • 0.75/6: I actually really dislike mesmerist. Nothing really grips me with their powers and I frequently ask myself why I'm not just playing a witch or a psychic for most of their abilities.

  • 0.75/9: Clerics I guess but frankly this is almost redundant. There are a few classes that fit into this category and all of them are insane so I guess cleric gets the chop just because their spell list IS their class features. The same could be said of wizards, mind you so this isn't saying much. This is like comparing doomsday devices on their colour scheme. At the end of the day they'll still rip everything to pieces.

  • 0.5/9: Psychics can be easily shut down by even simple fear effects like demoralize, so this presents a major problem at every level.

Strongest

  • 1.0/0: Barbarians. Just...barbarians.

  • 1.0/4: Paladins are pretty much head and shoulders over most other classes. Undeniably good.

  • 0.75/0: Unchained Rogue. Head and shoulders above its past self and ninja. It honestly holds itself well now.

  • 0.75/4: Literally only mediums, so yeah sure...Mediums can be good as beatsticks using Champion but their spellcasting spirits give them lower spell level access to certain spells like Haste which puts them in a similar position to core summoner. But that makes them a 6/9th so I guess that's cheating?

  • 0.75/6: Arsenal Chaplan Warpriest. Cannot be matched for pure DPS by even full BAB classes.

  • 0.75/9: Oracles are potent. REALLY potent. While heavily specialized they excel more at this than clerics. They also ooze flavour and make for interesting characters.

  • 0.5/9 Duh Wizard.

Favourite

  • 1.0/0: Fighters. Such a complex class, such an underappreciated class. Fighters can be and are so much more than people think they are. I say give them a try at least once.

  • 1.0/4: I like a class with skills and versatility, and the Ranger is exactly that class. With early access prerequisiteless bonus feats, a really strong attack and damage booster that usually is easily predicted for AP's, and spellcasting and an animal companion to boot, the ranger makes me so happy...

  • 0.75/0: Unchained Rogue. I love this class to death much like I love fighter. Versatile and good if you piece it together correctly.

  • 0.75/4: I hate Medium.

  • 0.75/6: Is it cheating if I say Eldritch Scoundrel Unchained Rogue? You keep Finesse Training and Debilitating Injury and get the wizard spell list, so I see that as a net gain. Sneak attack is fine, you just need Accomplished Sneak Attacker and sense vitals to make up the difference.

  • 0.75/9: I quite like Oracles for much the same reason they are the strongest. Much easier to do specific concepts with.

  • 0.5/9: Arcanist is really great, but Blood Arcanist makes me very happy.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

1/1 No casting: Slayer! It's literally the best parts of ranger, rogue, and fighter. Useful both in and out of combat. I like fighting like a swashbuckler (highly mobile striker), but I'm not sure the class does what I want it to do.

1/1 4th: Paladin, with Ranger a very close second. Ranger is THE BEST introductory class.

3/4 No casting: UNRogue. They're just better than regular rogues, which I never hated. Monks are fun too.

3/4 6th: Inquisitor or Alchemist, although the Magus is fun and the Warpriest looks wicked fun, and the Hunter looks neat. Bards are great if they have a lot of folk to buff, and Summoners can MAKE a lot of folk to buff.

3/4 9th: Druid or Shaman or Oracle or Cleric. I like them all! I've never had a chance to try a Shaman, but I like all the moving parts.

1/2 9th: Witch. Whenever I play a sorcerer or wizard, I'm always super afraid of running out of spells. Witches have hexes, so they never run out of magic.

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