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Weakest / strongest / favorite Class of each Chassis


Pathfinder RPG General Discussion

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Title says it all

For this threads purposes for a Chassis to be the same the class needs to have the same BAB and Spell Progression.

weakest

Full BAB, no spells: Swashbuckler
Full BAB, 4th spells: Ranger - they're kinda all good I didn't know what to pick
3/4 BAB, no casting: Rogue of the saddest chassis
3/4 BAB, 4th casting: aren't mediums weird?
3/4 BAB, 6th casting: Spiritualist, I love em and think all the classis of this chassis are good, and that this is the best chassis honestly for fun and balance.
3/4 BAB, 9th casting: Oracle, I'm so tempted to put Clerics here because so much of what they do something else does better but I don't think I can justify it.
1/2 BAB, 9th casting: Arcanist, controversial maybe? but I think between not getting many spells and the sorc spell progression, they just look like a nightmare to play from a resource management point of view.

strongest

Full BAB, no spells: Barbarian
Full BAB, 4th spells: Bloodrager
3/4 BAB, no casting: Kineticist lol the fact they're in this catagory makes me laugh.
3/4 BAB, 4th casting: aren't mediums weird? like seriously
3/4 BAB, 6th casting: Summoner, also happen to be my least favorite class of the chassis.
3/4 BAB, 9th casting: Shaman, they're meant to be good right? I've heard good things about these, if the hype isn't real I'd vote Druid.
1/2 BAB, 9th casting: Wizard, again my least favorite class of the chassis, especially when they get archetypes like the pact wizard O.o who thought that was a good idea.

favorite

Full BAB, no spells: Unchained Monk closely followed by brawler as the only full bab classes I find interesting.
Full BAB, 4th spells: Bloodrager, I don't play any of them sooo....
3/4 BAB, no casting: Kineticist, they're awesome, I just wish they had more good options because they look a bit samey to me a lot of the time
3/4 BAB, 4th casting: aren't mediums weird? like seriously, so weird.
3/4 BAB, 6th casting: By far the hardest category if you ask me, I'd probably go Occultist. Between Trappings of the warrior and the Silksworn archetype and being int focused they fell like the true everyman of pathfinder.
3/4 BAB, 9th casting: Oracle, simply amazing class.
1/2 BAB, 9th casting: Sorcerer

so how would you fill in this table?


IMO (& really, you have to get more specific than a class to have a meaningful reply here):

weakest
1.0/0: Sword saint samurai. So stylish, so useless.
1.0/4: Child of Acaana and Amaznen fighter. In exchange for ~bloodrager casting, take away almost everything the fighter gives, then take away their swift actions too.
0.75/0: Phantom thief rogue. Take the weakest class around, take away its damage bonus and make it a specialist in the mostly useless skill unlocks. I've read people defend it by saying it can cast a lot of level 1 spells per day eventually - just no.
0.75/4: ... is there anything other than the medium in this category?
0.75/6: Magical child vigilante. By far the worst spell list, and their main class feature is a familiar - nice as it is, it's not enough to be such.
0.75/9: Survivor druid. The only 9-level caster I can think of with diminished spellcasting.
0.5/9: Havocker witch. The witch spell list isn't that great, but the hexes make up for it... oh.

strongest
1.0/0: Probably the gunslinger. Very specific, but it does what it does very very well.
1.0/4: Vanilla paladin. Vulnerable to GMs, but smite, mercies and a good spell list are solid. No need for an archetype unless you have something really specific in mind.
0.75/0: If you're really calling the kineticist a non-caster, OK.
0.75/6: Chained summoner, yes.
0.75/9: Animal shaman druid, at least until high levels.
0.5/9: Yes, it's the wizzard. Archetypes are unnecessary.

favourite
1.0/0: Savage technologist barbarian. Besides being a frothing maniac, you can do some interesting things with the barbarian; this is one of them.
1.0/4: Prowler at World's End bloodrager. Besides being a frothing maniac, you can do some interesting things with the bloodrager; this is one of them.
0.75/0: If you're really calling the kineticist a non-caster, OK.
0.75/6: Tough call. Maybe grenadier alchemist, since you have a reason to play with all those weird alchemical weapons.
0.75/9: Spirit guide oracle. So many choices...
0.5/9: Blood arcanist. Like a sorcerer, but you have some skill points.


Weakest
1.0/0: Samurai, def. why take the cavalier and make it not good?
1.0/4: peobably the ranger. we just don't seem to have luck with him in my party
0.75/0: does vow of poverty monk count? cuz if not, it should.
0.75/4: What the f!!~, mediums. what the f%!#.
0.75/6: occultist? they're the only 3/4|6 I know and they're just not good.
0.75/9: clerics. good at healing? so are like 5 more classes. good at... well not much more. PASS
0.5/9: druids, sadly. amazing until level 12 and then POOF! your useless.
Strongest
1.0/0: yup gunsliger. 900 DPR from far away and touch AC is good.
1.0/4: again with the paladin. divine grace so good!
0.75/0: kineticist. cuz kaboom. that's why.
0.75/4: holy mother of f!&*ing s!+%, what's up with mediums
0.75/6: summoner. synthesist maybe?
0.5/9 WIZZIE
Fav
1.0/0: fighter because i like big numbers
1.0/4: bloodrager
0.75/0: kineticist. cuz kaboom. that's why.
0.75/4: did I mension the f~*%ing medium already?
0.75/6: unchained summoner,cuz I like my eidolons with 15 EPs and an equal amount of immunities.
0.5/9: Witch! for reasons.


hey! I didn't know they auto censor.


Well, now you know, bummer is it not?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

It's one of their best f*%@ing features.

That and the f$*~ing smurfings.


avr wrote:
IMO (& really, you have to get more specific than a class to have a meaningful reply here):

you're probably right I'm just lazy and think if you go for particular archetypes you might end up missing a generally bad class for one stinker of an archetype, for example that Vigilante one that makes you lose control of your character.

Which is actually what happened in most of your weak character options lol XD

Quote:


1.0/0: Probably the gunslinger. Very specific, but it does what it does very very well.

Really? I can only give so much credit for ranged overkill.

Quote:


0.75/0: If you're really calling the kineticist a non-caster, OK.

lol, they don't get spells so... I don't know where else to put them.

Quote:


0.75/9: Animal shaman druid, at least until high levels.

whats their trick?

Potato disciple wrote:


0.75/6: occultist? they're the only 3/4|6 I know and they're just not good.

Really? I think after summoner they're arguably one of the strongest options...

Quote:


0.5/9: druids, sadly. amazing until level 12 and then POOF! your useless.

what are you on about? O.o


1.0, 0- Weakest: Swashbuckler, Strongest: Barbarian, Favorite: Fighter
1.0, 4- Weakest: Ranger, Strongest: Paladin, Favorite: Bloodrager
3/4 0- Weakest: Rogue, Strongest: Kineticist, Favorite: Kineticist
3/4, 4- Medium
3/4, 6- Weakest: Mesmerist, Strongest: Summoner, Favorite: Occultist
3/4, 9- Weakest: Cleric, Strongest: Druid, Favorite: Oracle
1/2, 9- Weakest: Arcanist, Strongest: Wizard, Favorite: Psychic.


Mesmerist? I can see where you're coming from, its certainly easier to make an ineffective Mesmerist than it is Spiritualist.


Copying PossibleCabbage's format:

1.0, 0- Weakest: Swashbuckler, Strongest: Barbarian, Favorite: Fighter
1.0, 4- Weakest: Child of Whoever fighter, Strongest: Paladin, Favorite: Bloodrager
3/4 0- Weakest: Rogue, Strongest: Kineticist, Favorite: Unchained rogue (will look up kineticist sometime, but it probably should have been a category of its own)
3/4, 4- Medium
3/4, 6- Weakest: Magical Child Vigilante, Strongest: Summoner, Favorite: Inquisitor (inquisitor wins no doubt about it, but really my favorite spot for PF, so many fun classes)
3/4, 9- Weakest: Druid, Strongest: Shaman, Favorite: (spirit guide) Oracle
1/2, 9- Weakest: Arcanist, Strongest: (Pact) Wizard, Favorite: Pact wizard (I don't like playing this category, so why settle for anything less).

Disclaimer: I don't think weakest/strongest are the same for all levels of play (most obvious being druid/shaman switch-up at low levels), my list assumes 20th lvl.


I don't really rate strong vs. weak, but I'll play favorites!

Full BAB, no spells: Fighter! Every time feels different.
Full BAB, 4th spells: Paladin! Accept no substitutes.
3/4 BAB, no casting: Rogue! Sneaky and sassy.
3/4 BAB, 6th casting: Bard! Do a little of everything, and do it with style.
3/4 BAB, 9th casting: Druid! "NATURE TAKE THE LIFE SHE GAVE!"
1/2 BAB, 9th casting: Wizard! Phenomenal cosmic power without the living space limitations.

Dark Archive

Potato disciple wrote:

Weakest

0.75/6: occultist? they're the only 3/4|6 I know and they're just not good.

0.5/9: druids, sadly. amazing until level 12 and then POOF! your useless.

What? Gonna need you to elaborate on these. I'll take an Occultist any day and Druids are consistently rated highly my folk I know.


blahpers wrote:


3/4 BAB, 9th casting: Druid! "NATURE TAKE THE LIFE SHE GAVE!"

Ah, someone else who played far too much Baldur's Gate in their youngers days, always nice to see another fan.

As for my favorites....

Full BAB, no spells: Fighter! One can skeletonize a balor at 100 paces with the right build and bow.
Full BAB, 4th level spells: Paladin! Simultaneously be the most virtuous member of the party AND be an unstoppable juggernaut of righteousness
3/4 BAB, no casting: Kineticist, because being able to throw lightning bolts and spears of flame at people is way cooler than not being able to.
3/4 BAB, 6th casting: Bard. No, Inquisitor. No, Bard. No, Inquis- ARGHHH I can't choose in between two of my favorite classes.
3/4 BAB, 9th level spells: Oracle! Like clerics, but with class abilities and non-empty levels!
1/2 BAB, 9th level spells: Witch! Can still do something when out of spells per day. *Continues to cackle maniacally*


THATS WHERE THAT COMES FROM

that has been bugging me for hours.


Chromantic Durgon <3 wrote:
avr wrote:
IMO (& really, you have to get more specific than a class to have a meaningful reply here):

you're probably right I'm just lazy and think if you go for particular archetypes you might end up missing a generally bad class for one stinker of an archetype, for example that Vigilante one that makes you lose control of your character.

Which is actually what happened in most of your weak character options lol XD

Quote:


1.0/0: Probably the gunslinger. Very specific, but it does what it does very very well.
Really? I can only give so much credit for ranged overkill.
Quote:


0.75/9: Animal shaman druid, at least until high levels.
whats their trick?

I'm not sure. Personally I would rate the phantom thief below the brute vigilante in combat ability. Out of combat, yes, sure the phantom thief has its uses. And if we're talking about strongest/weakest in power, I put a lot of emphasis on combat ability in that context - which is also why the shock-and-awe gunslinger got my nomination.

Animal shaman druids at lower levels have a couple of advantages over the base druid. They can shapeshift for more combat ability (from level 2) without losing their hands, and they can summon as a standard action. The base druid isn't exactly weak either.

Later on they suffer from a lack of creatures which they can use the standard action summon on, and the druids' high level spell list is really short for some reason, with some good spells which are higher level than they are for other casters (e.g. heal, true seeing).


Wait, did I really put Druids in the 0.5/9 category?O_o

Shadow Lodge

Potato disciple wrote:

Weakest

1.0/0: Samurai, def. why take the cavalier and make it not good?

If you think that, then you've never seen a TWF samurai in action racking up MONSTEROUS Challenge and Piranha Strike bonuses x2 on very frequent crits with a pair of wakizashis. They are arguably *the* most destructive martial class in the game in a full-attack. (And they get a freakin' mount too, and their Resolve ability is flat-out triple-AAA best-in-game. Negate crits automatically at 9th? Holy smokes.)

Min/max DEX and 1. barbarian[urban] to get their motor started on a high-rev. (If you're not restricted to Paizo products, three or four levels of unchained-ninja accelerate the build by avoiding the necessity of Agile as well as providing Ki, sneak dice, and awesome skills.)

Shadow Lodge

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?

You're better off with a ranger if you want a F+/R+/W(myeh) TWF martial. Want to be a "monk" anyway? ...just dress him like one.

Shadow Lodge

Malefactor wrote:

As for my favorites....

Full BAB, no spells: Fighter! One can skeletonize a balor at 100 paces with the right build and bow.
Full BAB, 4th level spells: Paladin! Simultaneously be the most virtuous member of the party AND be an unstoppable juggernaut of righteousness

Being able to self-defibrillate for 6d6+17 LoH around 6th off a pair of feats and some equipment sure ain't too shabby either.
Quote:
3/4 BAB, 9th level spells: Oracle! Like clerics, but with class abilities and non-empty levels!

<nod> My Lame gnome w/Animal who rode her badger around was a gosh-ton of fun: it had a climb, swim, and burrow speed, so was good-to-go anywhere. And was ornery as the needs of RP dictated.

Contributor

Is there a list somewhere that breaks down all the extant Pathfinder classes by these chassisesises?


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Full BAB, no spellcasting:

  • Barbarian
  • Barbarian (Unchained)
  • Brawler
  • Cavalier
  • Fighter
  • Gunslinger
  • Monk
  • Monk (Unchained)
  • Samurai
  • Swashbuckler

Full BAB, 4th-level spellcasting:

  • Antipaladin
  • Bloodrager
  • Paladin
  • Ranger

3/4 BAB, no spellcasting:

  • Kineticist
  • Ninja
  • Rogue
  • Rogue (Unchained)
  • Slayer
  • Vigilante

3/4 BAB, 4th-level spellcasting:

  • Medium

3/4 BAB, 6th-level spellcasting:

  • Alchemist
  • Bard
  • Hunter
  • Inquisitor
  • Investigator
  • Magus
  • Mesmerist
  • Occultist
  • Skald
  • Spiritualist
  • Summoner
  • Summoner (Unchained)
  • Warpriest

3/4 BAB, 9th-level spellcasting:

  • Cleric
  • Druid
  • Oracle
  • Shaman

1/2 BAB, 9th-level spellcasting:

  • Arcanist
  • Psychic
  • Sorcerer
  • Witch
  • Wizard

Contributor

Thanks so much, Haladir!


Minor correction, slayer is full Bab.


Various archetypes move between these categories, as do vigilante specializations. Avenger vigilates are full BAB, cabalist, warlock or magical child vigilantes have 6-level casting, CoA&A fighters get 4-level casting, feyspeaker druids and a couple of cleric archetypes are 0.5 BAB, and some investigator archetypes lose casting.

IMO kineticists fit better as 6-level casters (their wild talents look a lot like a 6-level casting list with maybe a couple of higher level spells at reduced level) than as non-casters.


The way they operate certainly
But in terms of their actual physical chassis, they're none casters.


I have to ask as a not very experienced player, what makes the Swashbuckler so much weaker than other full BAB/no spell classes?


SorrySleeping wrote:
I have to ask as a not very experienced player, what makes the Swashbuckler so much weaker than other full BAB/no spell classes?

The Barbarian is outstanding; the Cavalier, Gunslinger, and Samurai have huge damage potential; and the UMonk and Fighter are more versatile. I would have put the Swashbuckler ahead of the fighter before Advanced Weapon Training was a thing, but even then you couldn't really build a Swashbuckler that's an archer (and archery is the best combat style.)

Don't get me wrong, the Swashbuckler is great fun the play, but you're not as versatile in terms of "different ways you can build it" than other pure martials, and there are archetypes of other classes (Daring Champion Cavalier and Virtuous Bravo Paladin) that kind of do what you do better than you do.

Shadow Lodge

Haladir wrote:

Full BAB, no spellcasting:

  • Barbarian
  • Barbarian (Unchained)
  • Brawler
  • Cavalier
  • Fighter
  • Gunslinger
  • Monk
  • Monk (Unchained)
  • Samurai
  • Swashbuckler

The Samurai's Resolve ability is arguably the best class benefit in the game for any martial. Go see what they get at 9th.


SorrySleeping wrote:
I have to ask as a not very experienced player, what makes the Swashbuckler so much weaker than other full BAB/no spell classes?

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

avr wrote:
SorrySleeping wrote:
I have to ask as a not very experienced player, what makes the Swashbuckler so much weaker than other full BAB/no spell classes?
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 get a good reflex save but don't get evasion until 11th, which is just a damned joke. So, basically, all of their saves suck as a martial.


@Haladir - as far as I know regular monk is still 3/4 no spellcasting rather than full BAB no spellcasting (yes they emulate some of it but still aren't).


Sir Thugsalot wrote:
The Samurai's Resolve ability is arguably the best class benefit in the game for any martial. Go see what they get at 9th.

Interestingly, a kinetic knight kineticist gets the same ability at 11th. Fortified Armor Training is a feat with no prereqs which allows the same at the cost of breaking your armor or shield. Armored Sacrifice you know about (and hate, yes.)

Nice ability, but hardly unique.


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? It is a monk weapon. They can flurry with all monk weapons. In fact, since UMonks are proficient with all weapons with the monk quality, they can flurry with nine-section whips, seven-branch swords etc just fine. The difference is mostly that before flurry was pseudo-TWF, now it is a flat attack at full bonuses. At level 8, a base monk´s flurry based just on base attacks would be 6/6/1/1, an unchained monk´s would be 8/8/3. Sure, the pure monk has an extra attack at +1, but he is a bit behind on attacks. At level 10, the Umonk gets a third attack at full BAB. Their flurry looks quite good to me.

The will saves nerf was not needed and made it too close to the brawler. The HD and save change was one of the things I did not like about the new monk, the other was the loss of archetypes. Some of the ki powers lost out, but there are enough that are okay.

Give the Umonk a good will save (even at the cost of the d8 HD) and have the DM allow more archetypes, and I´d be happy enough.

Anyway, here are my favourites:

Full BAB, no spells: Barbarian. Get angry, wreck stuff, job done
Full BAB, 4th level spells: Rangers get a bad rep recently, but they are versatile and flavorful
3/4 BAB, no casting: Kineticist. I was into manipulating elements even before Avatar came out.
3/4 BAB, 6th casting: Bard or inquisitor. Both are so, so good. The investigator and alchemist get an honorable mention.
3/4 BAB, 9th level spells: Oracle:I like divine casters, but a cleric´s progression is broken. The oracle fixes almost all of those problems
1/2 BAB, 9th level spells: Witch. Pacts with mysterious beings for arcane might are just so flavorful. The sorcerer is a close second.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I made a few errors when I put this together... Here's the corrected list:

Full BAB, no spellcasting:

  • Barbarian
  • Barbarian (Unchained)
  • Brawler
  • Cavalier
  • Fighter
  • Gunslinger
  • Monk (Unchained)
  • Samurai
  • Slayer
  • Swashbuckler
  • Vigilante*

Full BAB, 4th-level spellcasting:

  • Antipaladin
  • Bloodrager
  • Paladin
  • Ranger

3/4 BAB, no spellcasting:

  • Kineticist
  • Monk
  • Ninja
  • Rogue
  • Rogue (Unchained)
  • Vigilante*

3/4 BAB, 4th-level spellcasting:

  • Medium**

3/4 BAB, 6th-level spellcasting:

  • Alchemist
  • Bard
  • Hunter
  • Inquisitor
  • Investigator
  • Magus
  • Mesmerist
  • Occultist
  • Skald
  • Spiritualist
  • Summoner
  • Summoner (Unchained)
  • Warpriest

3/4 BAB, 9th-level spellcasting:

  • Cleric
  • Druid
  • Oracle
  • Shaman

1/2 BAB, 9th-level spellcasting:

  • Arcanist
  • Psychic
  • Sorcerer
  • Witch
  • Wizard

*-Core class has one of two BAB progressions, chosen at L1.

**-Core class can act as a 6th-level caster at some times.


I'll participate in the Favorite section. My overall opinions on what make the strongest class aren't often shared by other posters and I really don't want to discuss (argue) the specifics

favorite

Full BAB, no spells: Brawler. Honorable mention to the Fighter.
Full BAB, 4th spells: Paladin, hands down. Honorable mention to the Bloodrager.
3/4 BAB, no casting: Unchained Rogue (I'd say Kineticist, but I consider them a casting class)
3/4 BAB, 4th casting: Haven't played a Medium yet. I suppose this is where I put Kineticist? Yes, feels correct right here.
3/4 BAB, 6th casting: Erk!?!? Too many good classes here. Pathfinder is VERY good at making these kinds of classes, and making them amazing. If I had to pick one? Bard/Skald depending if melee heavy group or not. Hunter if the above class(es) are taken.
3/4 BAB, 9th casting: Druid. Honorable mention goes to Oracles and Shamans.
1/2 BAB, 9th casting: Druid ... Eh, what? Feyspeaker makes this work. But seriously, Arcanist. All the flavor of the Sorcerer (with the right archetype) and flexibility of the Wizard. Shame about those spells per day. But that's what a Shaman/Arcanist/Mystic Theurge is for. What do you mean, what about Witches? They are good, too.... Damn


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?

You're better off with a ranger if you want a F+/R+/W(myeh) TWF martial. Want to be a "monk" anyway? ...just dress him like one.

Say what? What prevents an unchained monk from flurrying with a temple sword?


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.


I think Sir Thugsalot's issue, as I have seen it posted, is the ki strike has to be an unarmed strike.

The counter argument is unarmed strikes are better than they used to be jabbing style, dragon style, pummeling style etc. Medusa’s Wrath requires you to make unarmed strikes and it rather good on UnMonks. I have also seen the case that flying kick, elbow smash, hammerfist, Shattering Punch all help close the gap between weapons and fists.

Secret Wizard has made the case, in the past, and shown builds, if my memory serves me, that have comparable will saves between the two monks as the UnMonk can make do with stat arrays that have more room for wisdoms and the builds require fewer feats.

This is my memory of the state of the comparison though I would need to look back and see builds side by side to make an actual call.

Liberty's Edge

Full BAB, no spells: W-Samurai B-Barbarian F-Slayer
Full BAB, 4th spells: W-Ranger B-Bloodrager F-Bloodrager
3/4 BAB, no casting: W-Rogue B-Kineticist F-Kineticist
3/4 BAB, 6th casting: W-Mesmerist B-Magus F-Bard
3/4 BAB, 9th casting: W-Cleric B-Oracle F-Druid
1/2 BAB, 9th casting: W-Psychic B-Wizard F-Witch

A bunch of these seem super weird without context though. Paladin can definitely be the best full BAB 4 level caster, depending on the sort of campaign, but bloodrager can fit any campaign. And I love the ranger, but somebody has to come last. Same with the 9th level casters, any one of them is good.


I don't think Magus has come up before as strongest, thanks interesting.

Liberty's Edge

Chromantic Durgon <3 wrote:
I don't think Magus has come up before as strongest, thanks interesting.

Yeah, don't get me wrong, summoner can be really powerful too. But the need to split money between summoner and eidolon, and the ability to dismiss the eidolon make for some key weaknesses the magus doesn't have. Magus is already getting roughly 2 characters worth of actions with spell combat anyway. It's pretty close, but I think the magus has a slight edge as most powerful. Definitely less versatile, and interesting, than most of the 6 level casters though.


Grandlounge wrote:

I think Sir Thugsalot's issue, as I have seen it posted, is the ki strike has to be an unarmed strike.

The counter argument is unarmed strikes are better than they used to be jabbing style, dragon style, pummeling style etc. Medusa’s Wrath requires you to make unarmed strikes and it rather good on UnMonks. I have also seen the case that flying kick, elbow smash, hammerfist, Shattering Punch all help close the gap between weapons and fists.

Secret Wizard has made the case, in the past, and shown builds, if my memory serves me, that have comparable will saves between the two monks as the UnMonk can make do with stat arrays that have more room for wisdoms and the builds require fewer feats.

This is my memory of the state of the comparison though I would need to look back and see builds side by side to make an actual call.

I see; it's less the flurry itself and more the stuff that gets tacked onto a flurry. Sounds like there's room to build in either direction; if I want to stick with temple sword, I find other uses for ki and pick up feats that complement my choice.

/no dog in this hunt here; I've yet to actually play a monk

Liberty's Edge

I've always thought the strength build seven branch sword using Umonk was one of the strongest 1st level characters. Low natural AC, but a possible 38 damage a round as a first level character. Just stock up on scrolls of mage armor for the magic user to cast on you. Mind you, just taking a temple sword and doing the same thing is still pretty powerful, and you can transition to unarmed strike at high level when you gain more abilities that require unarmed strikes.


Deighton Thrane wrote:
Chromantic Durgon <3 wrote:
I don't think Magus has come up before as strongest, thanks interesting.
Yeah, don't get me wrong, summoner can be really powerful too. But the need to split money between summoner and eidolon, and the ability to dismiss the eidolon make for some key weaknesses the magus doesn't have. Magus is already getting roughly 2 characters worth of actions with spell combat anyway. It's pretty close, but I think the magus has a slight edge as most powerful. Definitely less versatile, and interesting, than most of the 6 level casters though.

To be honest the summoner kinda ruins this category in my opinion because its so ahead of the curve, however were I to ignore it I still don't think I'd pick the Magus, probably an Occultist actually would be my vote.


Deighton Thrane wrote:
I've always thought the strength build seven branch sword using Umonk was one of the strongest 1st level characters. Low natural AC, but a possible 38 damage a round as a first level character. Just stock up on scrolls of mage armor for the magic user to cast on you. Mind you, just taking a temple sword and doing the same thing is still pretty powerful, and you can transition to unarmed strike at high level when you gain more abilities that require unarmed strikes.

I mean, thats a lot of damage sure, but how useful is 38 damage at level one? You'd have to be fighting something at about CR4 before that even stops being overkill, at a certain point your numbers become so big that you're wasting resources when you could be diversifying rather than being so good at one trick that its a waste.

For instance I made a dex unmonk he had 14 Str for PA and Quain martial artist to help him out before he got agile amulets, his damage on a flurry averaged 13, not flashy, but actually still enough to one shot CR1 creatures, and he has nice AC, CON, Saves, big ki pool, loads of fun stuff.


Chromantic Durgon <3 wrote:
Deighton Thrane wrote:
I've always thought the strength build seven branch sword using Umonk was one of the strongest 1st level characters. Low natural AC, but a possible 38 damage a round as a first level character. Just stock up on scrolls of mage armor for the magic user to cast on you. Mind you, just taking a temple sword and doing the same thing is still pretty powerful, and you can transition to unarmed strike at high level when you gain more abilities that require unarmed strikes.

I mean, thats a lot of damage sure, but how useful is 38 damage at level one? You'd have to be fighting something at about CR4 before that even stops being overkill, at a certain point your numbers become so big that you're wasting resources when you could be diversifying rather than being so good at one trick that its a waste.

For instance I made a dex unmonk he had 14 Str for PA and Quain martial artist to help him out before he got agile amulets, his damage on a flurry averaged 13, not flashy, but actually still enough to one shot CR1 creatures, and he has nice AC, CON, Saves, big ki pool, loads of fun stuff.

The major advantage at level one is that you have the option of separating those attacks out at 2 separate opponents. Strike down 2 bandits or if your fighting a high hp wild animal concentrate on that.

Liberty's Edge

Chromantic Durgon <3 wrote:
To be honest the summoner kinda ruins this category in my opinion because its so ahead of the curve, however were I to ignore it I still don't think I'd pick the Magus, probably an Occultist actually would be my vote.

I'm not surprised by the summoner being your top of the list, but I am about the Occultist being second in line. I like the class, but even without magus or summoner, I'd put alchemists, inquisitors, investigators, hunters and warpriests all ahead of occultists in terms of power.

Also NoTongue is bang on with why the two handed flurry is so good. You're fairly likely to take out 2 enemies a round at first level, while still being able to take out anything up to CR 3. If you do get the wizard to buff you, you could also have an AC of 19 while you do it, which is pretty darn good for first level.


Like DeathlessOne, my groups opinions on what makes something strong or weak varies, so just listing favorites according to their preferences over the years.

Full|0 - Fighter, but it's had it's ups and downs over the years
Full|4 - Ranger. Everyone thinks Paladin is stronger, but no one likes playing one usually
3/4|0 - Monk... I think someone played a Zen Archer once, otherwise none of them
3/4|4 - None/Never played
3/4|6 - This is the sweet spot for the entire group... Alchemist, Bard, Inquisitor, and Investigator are tied at the top
3/4|9 - Cleric, but there have been a few Druids and Oracles
1/2|9 - Wizard with Witch and Psychic close behind


Deighton Thrane wrote:
]I'm not surprised by the summoner being your top of the list, but I am about the Occultist being second in line. I like the class, but even without magus or summoner, I'd put alchemists, inquisitors, investigators, hunters and warpriests all ahead of occultists in terms of power.

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.

Quote:


Also NoTongue is bang on with why the two handed flurry is so good. You're fairly likely to take out 2 enemies a round at first level, while still being able to take out anything up to CR 3. If you do get the wizard to buff you, you could also have an AC of 19 while you do it, which is pretty darn good for first level.

Being able to attack two enemies and potentially kill both is nice I'll grant you.

I've yet to meet a level one wizard willing to spend one of his 3 (or maybe 4 if they really pumped INT) spell slots buffing your AC for one hour. I've heard of monks buying them a pearl of power of a wand of the appropriate spell,

Shadow Lodge

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.

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