critique my unarmed aasimar pali build idea


Ever since I saw the whole angelic aasimar feat tree I was smitten (no pun)

Basically for fout feats you get winged flight at lvl 10, always on, non dispelable and at lvl 11 "You gain two wing attacks. These are secondary natural attacks that deal 1d4 points of slashing damage"

Somehow having two extra attack sounded awesome but the feat invest was alway prohibiting, especially for a pali.

I thought about combining this with spear dancing but that makes it even more feat intensive, going nowhere....

What it come down to is a cocept to make most out of these wing attacks. Of course the Irorian pali seems like aan option. Looking at the mechanics it quickly fell through though. It tries to combine pali and monk but in a unconvincing way.

So my my idea was to go to dex based fighting (perhaps just a leftover from spear dancing, but it elimintes the need for stregth and gives you AC and Ref saves.) Also all the unarmed fighting the monk gets is awesome.

So I ended up with something like this:
1 - UC Rogue 1 Weapon finesse free + Angelic Blood
2 - UC Rogue 2 Combat trick piranha strike
3 - UC Rogue 3 Dex to damage free + Angelic Flesh Steel = Cold iron unarmed strike +1 nat armor
4 - (UC) Monk 1 all the nice unarmed fighting feats + 1 bonus feat like dodge, possibly with Sohei archetype for light armour)
5 onwards pali with smite evil, divine bond (which works with imrpoved unarmed strike), ...

with 15 Pts buy and race adjustmenst stats would look like (I don't do dump stats):
Str 10
Dex 15
Con 14
Int 10
Wis 10
Cha 16

at out table the don't make the full destinction for dex to dmg only applying to one weapon, you have it for everything.

What do you think?

Seems pretty decent to me. Can you get smite on unarmed strikes?

There is a number of threads in the rules forum coming to that conclusion. You'd need improved unarmed strike though.that's covered by 1 lvl monk :-)

Also finesse, dex to damage and amulet of mighty fist all work with wings and natural attacks.

To elaborate a bit further, since I don't stay long enough for a Ki pool, WIS is a non issue, making the build less MAD.

Rogue gives a nice number of skillpoints, ckass skills and 2d6 backstab. This might need to be refluffed as precision damage, not to sound to evil for the pali :-)

I must admit, I didn't do a full build yet but after lvl 1 the build should get rather good survivability.
At starting from lvl 4 flurry kicks in.
At lvl 7 there will be 2 attacks with full BAB and one at BAB-5 together with lunge.
From lvl 12 there will be 2x full BAB, 3x BAB-5 and one BAB-10 on a full attack. With smite and piranha strike and dex to dmg an backstab that should net a nice amount of damage.

I'd recommend that you go with the Scaled Fist archetype, as it wouldn't change much, but would mean that if you ever lose your armor, you'd gain an AC bonus from your Charisma. And late game when your Charisma is 22+, it might even be worth it to do away with armor altogether.

I don't fully understand why you're going with a Dex build. Sure, +2 AC via Dex is nice, but is it worth a 3 level rogue dip? A single level of Brawler, followed by going full vanilla Paladin, would allow you to go in as a fully armored holy warrior with metal wings of death.

Lastly, if you aren't considering any other archetypes, you might look at the Oath of Vengeance, which nets you a Haste-lite spell as a 3rd level spell via Blessing of Fervor and the ability to gain extra Smite's by forgoing 2 uses of Lay on Hands and access to Channel Energy.

Love the scaled fist. For a moment I was tempted to try for both Sohei and Scaled Fist. Turned out that the Sohei looses the second attribute to AC in exchange for the armor proficiency. Getting Cha to AC always on vs only when smiting is cool and I could still get bracers of AC.

The brawler is an option I wasn't even aware of. Turns out though that I'd need two levels to get the brawlers flurry. From a mechanical point of view it seems not as attractive as the monk's flurry since it's based on TWF giving you -2 on all relevant attacks.

The whole dex based melee is something that I have been thinking about for quite a while. It also ties in with my original spear dance idea. It also nicely ties in with the monk needing dex for AC, initiative, Ref save, stealth skill based on dex, ....

Still I'm aware that I lose quite a bit of pali by starting 4 levels late. With a strength build I'd go for two levels of brawler to pick up the fury getting two more pali levels from the deal.

I'll really need to sit down and makee both builds to put the side by side....

P. S. Scaled fist is officially UC Monk compatible which I'm not sure about with the Sohei

Keep in mind that if you use Brawler's Flurry then you can't add attacks with your wings.

Brawler's Flurry wrote:
A brawler with natural weapons can't use such weapons as part of brawler's flurry, nor can she make natural weapon attacks in addition to her brawler's flurry attacks.

The real gem in a Brawler dip is Martial Flexibility.

Sorry, I don't get how martial flexibility helps here, could you elaborate?

Just found out about pummeling style. Even with the errata it's still awesome.

Christopk-K wrote:
Sorry, I don't get how martial flexibility helps here, could you elaborate?

Nothing specific to your build. The ability to select combat feats when needed is good for any character which will be engaging in physical combat.

If you want a dex-based Paladin using wing attacks, why not just wield an Agile Elven curved blade with Power Attack and pick up a Bodywrap of Mighty Strikes when you eventually get the wing attacks? Two-handing an Agile weapon is simple and effective, and unlike many Agile builds, two-hander and Power Attack isn't dependant on Agile (it's just good to have).

If you want some kind of TWF thing, use two levels of Brawler with Spear Dancing Spiral and an Agile Elven branched spear. You can build TWF on an Agile weapon where all attacks are two-handed thanks to Brawler's Flurry.

Edit: or there's always just going strength-based TWF. TWF only requires 17DEX to do right, and that can mean 15DEX and an 8,000gp item.

We'll have 15 Point buy. I have been spending some time thinking about Dex vs Str Builds.
As far as Stats go I'd start with:
str build dex build
STR 16 10
DEX 12 16
CON 14 14
INT 10 10
WIS 10 10
CHA 16 16
These include +2 str and cha from angelic aasimar.
It seems to me that with the Strength build I'll lose 2 Points each of Ref Save, AC, initiative and Stealth skill. 3 points each at lvl 8.
On the other hand I'll skip the three rogue levels being almost vanilla pali.

Typing on my phone becomes awkward for long texts, so I need to split it into multiple posts, sorry for that.

Anyway. Would you prefer str or dex based builds? For AC I guess I'll get away in our group with adding Sohei to UC monk.

Are there any pali archetypes you'd suggest besides the Irorian pali?

Have you looked into the Iroran Paladin? You get to add your Charisma bonus (up to your class level) to your AC in light armor, and you get Unarmed Strike built in.

Is the actual objective here still an unarmed build? Or just a build that uses wing attacks?

AZGrowler wrote:
Have you looked into the Iroran Paladin? You get to add your Charisma bonus (up to your class level) to your AC in light armor, and you get Unarmed Strike built in.

I have to admit that I'm nit a big fan of the Irorian Pali. It trades out too much of the good stuff a pali gets.

The only selling point would be the "personal trail" having no alignment restrictions. (That's the replacement for smite evil). On the other hand that doesn't cancel DR and you only get a fixed bonus going to +6 at lvl 20 to to hit, damage and AC. With smiting you'll get something in the range of +8 to to hit and AC and +20 on damage by lvl 20.

With Sohei I'll still get light armor.

Currently I have the feeling that dipping 1 lvl UC monk and then going full pali will be much better than the Irorian pali.

Please let me know if I missed something about the Irorian pali.

BadBird wrote:
Is the actual objective here still an unarmed build? Or just a build that uses wing attacks?

That git me thinking what I really want.

Actually I'm looking for a viable build with the wing attacks.

Going unarmed comes from the idea to use divine bond and amulet of mighty fist to buff all attacks.

This in turn got the monk in the mix. And the whole dex thing came from needing AC for the monk.

If you have a completely different approach to make the wings viable, please feel free.

And I'll try to be more open to new ideas :-)

This is where the whole idea came from. I now seems to me that there is quite a bit of old stuff I didn't drop as the concept evolved.

Go to the beginning.

I'd say keep it fairly simple. Go strength-based Paladin with a weapon or weapons. Dip one level of Celestial Bloodline Urban Bloodrager, which grants Controlled Rage to gain bonus strength without lowering AC or messing with CON (take Extra Rage as needed, and maybe Berserker of the Society trait if you're allowed to). When you reach the point that you can actually get your wing attacks, buy a +1 Furious Bodywrap of Mighty Strikes (12K). Your wing attacks will now be +3 weapons while using Bloodrage, and Celestial Bloodrager breaks Evil DR automatically. You still have a free amulet slot, and can buy whatever Furious primary weapon you want.

Other than that, build whatever you want. It only takes 2 feats by 11 to get wings, and one Extra Rage and maybe the trait is already 15/day rage, so you've still got some feats to play with.

Shadow Lodge

Christopk-K wrote:
(I don't do dump stats)
Sure you do; your build had three 10s -- those are "dumped". They're just not dumped into single digits. That doesn't mean you're getting any decent use out of them. With 15pt buy, dumping is not only expected, it's almost mandatory to be better than mediocre.
Ever since I saw the whole angelic aasimar feat tree I was smitten (no pun)
There are better ways to get airborne that don't come at the hideously-taxed feat cost of Angel Wings. (More on that later.)
What it come down to is a concept to make most out of these wing attacks.

Ignore natural attacks and instead rain down death from above with a *bow*. -- Does everyone else in your party want to be the magus, or a warpriest, in 15pt-buy where they stand in the monster's full-attack murderzone like a tasty pulled-pork popsicle? ...Well, you go right ahead and let 'em do that. Erastil is a grouch who prefers that her servants remain alive to further do her work, so put your suicidal tendencies on a back-burner, bub.

~ ~ ~ ~

DEX:15 (bump 4th)
INT:07 (Angelkin aasimar 15,14,14,12,10,07 15pt array)
CHA+16 (bump 8th+)

Favored Class: paladin, always takes skill points
Traits: Accelerated Drinker, Deadeye Bowman(religion:Erastil)

00 HP saves FT RF WI
00 00 base: 02 02 00
01 12 blood 04 02 00 [move+10][rage:6r/day][Bloodline:celestial:angelic attacks|feat:Weapon Focus(longbow)], Fey Foundling

* Woof! Would you look at all that stuff? Holy smokes... The days of martials dipping fighter for a spare feat are over; if Paizo is going to cram that much stuff into a class at 1st-level, you're nuts to not back up the truck.

* Use rage very sparingly: Rounds per day are limited, and the build cannot take Raging Vitality prior to a CON-belt, which is not a priority. However, it'll be handy later on with an Adaptive bow and movement mechanics to avoid melee.

02 19 ninja1 04 04 00 [SA+1d6]
03 26 ninja2 04 05 00 [Ki pool][combat trick:Power Attack], Quick Draw

* Quick Draw powers quickdraw shields, and fosters a highly versatile switch-hitter combat style employed well by paladins who've a ton of power but very few spare feat slots. Tactics are to rotate archery, polearms, and in-close weaponry. It may not seem like an intuitive choice here, but all sorts of new ideas will occur to you only after the ability to implement them exists. For example, you're facing a wounded opponent in melee; you declare a full-attack (because you intend to spend a point of ki for an extra attack). If you need to hit them twice, you're good -- but if you drop him with your first swat and then find yourself not near any other opponent, you can quickdraw your bow and shoot a distance target. It's all about squeezing action economy. Or something gets right up in your grill while you're holding your just drop it, quickdraw a melee beatstick and klonk away.

* You will be buying this stuff by the crate: Meditation Crystals and Tea of Transference, because they will grant you the ability to almost infinitely recycle the paladin goodies which you are about to receive. Keep the haverfridge well-stocked.

00 HP saves FT RF WI
04 34 pala1 06 06 02 [core archetype][Smite:1/d], DEX>16
05 42 pala2 10 09 06 [divine grace][Lay on Hands:d6+2], Deadly Aim

* With both Power Attack and Deadly Aim, damage is beginning to scale.
* You might be tempted to take the Divine Hunter archetype in order to snarf Precise Shot...don't.

06 50 pala3 10 10 06 [mercy:fatigued][LoH:2d6+4]
07 58 pala4 11 10 07 [Sm2/d][spells][channel][LoH:3d6+6], Greater Mercy

* Weapons on the Christmas shopping list: +1/Adaptable greenwood composite longbow, +1/Furious bardiche, and a really nice kukri along the same lines. Oh, and don't forget Santa's little helper: a Silver Smite Bracelet.

08 66 pala5 11 10 07 [divine bond]
09 74 pala6 12 11 08 [mercy:enfeebled][LoH:4d6+8], FEAT(g) (...Boon Companion, if you took a mount)
10 keep doin' that paladin thang....

* Now I know what you're asking, "Where are my wings, sucka!? You said there'd be wings."

-- Your wings are right here. Then you pop these on your buddy. Then you share this, which you can do because it's on the bloodrager list (so you'll have a 750gp wand of it).

Moral of the story: Don't blow two feats (one of them being a thoroughly worthless "tax") in the most feat-starved class in the game to obtain what you can get earlier and better versions of with mere gold.

Shield of Wings is Ragathiel-specific and a min/level level 3 Paladin spell, so I'm not sure it really offers the same utility as permanent wings; and I think actually having wings may be a key point of the character concept the OP is going for.

I would say that wing attacks are probably not 'worth it', though they're certainly doable; Power Attack and a big weapon works fine as a combat style, and it's not feat-intensive.

If the concept of a winged Aasimar is the real point of the build, I'd get the wings but ignore the wing attacks, and do something more interesting as a combat style.

Here's a pretty thematic Aasimar concept, at least in my opinion:

Angel-Blooded Aasimar: 16/18, 15, 12, 12, 9, 14/16.
Swashbuckler 1/ Paladin 10

1. Two-Weapon Fighting
3. Combat Reflexes
5. Power Attack
7. Improved Two-Weapon Fighting
9. Angelic Blood
11. Angel Wings

Notable items: rapier, Fortuitous cestus, Swordmaster's Flair: Blue Scarf, DEX boosting Ioun Stone (implanted?).

You wield a rapier in your mainhand while holding the Blue Scarf in your cestus hand. This means you have a piercing weapon offhand as well as a free hand. The Blue Scarf spends Panache to grant reach to both your weapons, while you can also spend Panache on Dodging Panache and Opportune Parry and Riposte. You can make rapier AoOs from both reach and riposte, and from your Fortuitous offhand as well, meaning an advancing foe might well eat 3 attacks. Reach and Dodging Panache are extremely tactical when you can fly...

Christopk-K wrote:
BadBird wrote:
Is the actual objective here still an unarmed build? Or just a build that uses wing attacks?

That git me thinking what I really want.

Actually I'm looking for a viable build with the wing attacks.

Going unarmed comes from the idea to use divine bond and amulet of mighty fist to buff all attacks.

This in turn got the monk in the mix. And the whole dex thing came from needing AC for the monk.

If you have a completely different approach to make the wings viable, please feel free.

And I'll try to be more open to new ideas :-)

If you really like Paladin I'd just skip any dips and go for a standard Str-based two-handed approach. Save money by using a Bodywrap of Mighty Strikes for your wings. It's a simple, high-damage build similar to Badbird's earlier suggestion.

If you really want to go with a Natural Weapons approach I'd consider a Str-based Draconic Bloodrager build with a few levels of Dragon Disciple for a Bite, Claw, Claw, Wing, Wing attack combo.

Thanks, many good ideas from all.
I got to do some builds to compare.
So far I did the builds w/o magic items but I guess for real comparability I'll have to do these also?

Just on a side note, to me dumping a stat is actually having it below the neutral 10. So I don't dump. I just don't increase all stats :-)

Just a suggestion:

Level 1: Perfect Scholar Unchained Monk of the Mantis
- Flurry of blows
- Wis to AC if you are ever unarmored

Levels 2-4: Enlightened Paladin
- Fists scale at 1/2 level as if though you were a monk
- Cha to AC per paladin level
- Cha to Saves
- Something similar to smite

Levels 5-7: Unchained Monk
- Sneak attack
- +1 AC if unarmored
- +10ft movement
- Monastic Legacy (paladin levels now count as full monk levels for unarmored damage)
- 1d6 sneak attack damage when using flurry of blows

Levels 8+ Enlightened Paladin
- Weapon Bond on your fists
- Can ignore DR with your 'akin to smite evil'


As an Aasimar, you could have this with a 15 point buy:

Str (10) Dex (15) Con (12) Int (7) Wis (16) Cha (16) HP (11) AC (16)

Ok. HP is going to suffer. So are your skills (get diplomacy and perception). Do FCB with HP for your paladin levels.

Lvl 1: Weapon Finesse (Dex to hit, and save up for an agile amulet of mighty blows)
Lvl 1 Monk: Dodge
Lvl 3: Angelic Blood
Lvl 4: +1 Dex (16)
Lvl 5: Angelic Skin (+1 AC, fists are silver)
Lvl 7: Monastic Legacy (both classes count as monk for unarmed damage)
Lvl 8: +1 Dex (17)
Lvl 9: Toughness (your con isn't that good...)
Lvl 11: Angelic Wings (you can fly!)
Lvl 12: +1 Dex (18)
Lvl 13: Weapon Focus (unarmed)
Lvl 15: Metallic Wings (+2 secondary attacks. Because +2 attacks is always nice to have)
Lvl 16: +1 Dex (19)
Lvl 17: Skill Focus (Diplomacy)
Lvl 19: Skill Focus (Perception)
Lvl 20: +1 Dex (20)

End up with good saves all around (and enemies can't make you re-roll your saves, plus you protect your party from having to re-roll). Decent unarmed damage (flurry of blows, weapon bond, light sneak attack damage, personal trial for overcoming all DR). Decent AC (at lvl 4 you have AC 21 without any equipment). Can eventually fly around. Get to look like a silver-skinned angel.

Seems like a win all around.

This idea just died a bit.
Neither standard nor UC flurry allow for any extra attacks from natural weapons. I was completely unaware of this and it was a bit of a bummer.

Still there are many cool thinhs for me to take away from this e. g. bloodragers

I want to say thank to all for your great ideas :-)

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