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Herald Caller caster advice


Advice


So the campaign I am about to start playing in is starting us off at level 3 (mainly because levels 1-2 generally kind of suck for most classes) and I am playing a cleric because my party needs healing and I generally find them fun to play. The cleric I'm playing has a neutral deity.

Aasimar Herald Caller 3 (Neutral Deity)
Domain: Trickery

STR - 10
DEX - 13
CON - 14
INT - 10
WIS - 17
CHA - 16

Feats:
1) Selective Channeling
3) Craft Wonderous Item (yes I have confirmed there will be sufficient time to us this in the campaign)

Traits:
- Reactionary (+2 initiative)
- Dangerously Curious (UMD class skill)

Considering Herald caller can only use light armor and my party already has sufficient melee damage I will be focusing on summoning and casting from a distance.

Should I lower the charisma to increase something like dexterity? Channeling in combat is more viable for me considering Herald caller allows me to channel and heal all summoned monsters regardless of distance from away from me. But increased dex would help my ranged attacks (any little bit helps), AC, initiative and skills like stealth.

I was also curious if Selective Channeling is a good choice? Or would something like improved initiative be a better choice so I can hopefully go before the others to start my summoning/buffing? Any advice is welcome.


Channeling in combat is passable, and is generally only worth your time if the party is taking AoE damage. If only some of your party members are injured, you're usually better off casting a spell. Due to their short duration, summoned creatures usually aren't worth healing. If you're going to pursue it, Selective Channel is needed to use it reliably and you'll also want to build towards the Quick Channel feat so you can channel and cast at the same time.

Being true neutral locks you out of Sacred Summons, which is a bit disappointing, but there are other options. Versatile Summon Monster is a pretty good selection for adding more diverse ability options to your summons.


Also, any wands that you would recommend with a build like this? UMD has been very helpful in previous classes I have played and am curious if its useful for a cleric as well.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

I agree with Dasrak- a neutral god isn’t the best choice. It eliminates sacred summons for you (as he mentioned), and that really is a loss for this kind of character. It’s also going to limit your summoning options with the downside of the divine heralds ability. Also, I’m not generally a proponent of variant channeling but in a build like this it really might be worth looking at, maybe with like the strength or luck portfolio?

Sovereign Court

UMD isn't so important for clerics really. It's never weak but it's not as strong as it is for other classes, because you already have most of the spells you need on your spell list. If you have to ask "what wands would I UMD" then you probably don't need UMD. After all, the #1 reason to take UMD is so that "somebody can activate the damn CLW wand!". The classes that start with UMD as class skill are also the ones that tend to get more use out of it.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

You do get less mileage out of UMD as a 9 level caster than many other classes do, but it’s still a very useful skill... a couple of offensive wands will give you better options for dealing damage than worrying about your Dex and ranged attacks. A wand or a few scrolls with spells like mirror image or blur will likewise do more for your defenses than a little more Dex. And, actually, invisibility will be an awesome spell for you because neither summoning nor buffing/healing breaks it so you should be able stay invisible for whole fights pretty easily.

Grand Lodge

I would go Fate's Favored as a trait and taking Noble Scion of War as one of the starting feats. Sometimes the cleric has to act fast or at least, having the luxury to choose when they play, and that stacks with the circlet of persuasion. I would reverse Str and dex, at one point, the equipment starts to be quite heavy and you need to grab weigh allowance.

Otherwise, I would suggest a dip of lore oracle to get charisma on AC instead of dex, and powerless prophecy as a curse to get uncanny dodge. Doesn't sound completely on sync with RP, but it's mechanically fine


Thanks for all of the advice so far everybody.

Do you think that a 16 charisma is too high? Or would 14 be better?

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

If you want channeling to be a significant part of what you’re doing I think you really want that 16. If the channeling is just an after thought then drop it to 14 and add some survivability with a bump to Dex or Con.


It is a bit high, and you'd get better value for those points elsewhere. It's not terrible, since the Aasimar racial bonus does mean that 16 is significantly more affordable, but your point buy is tight and charisma doesn't really do much for you beyond channeling.

Strength would get you more carrying capacity, which is important if you'd like to use heavier armor. Dexterity gives you more AC and initiative, plus it boosts your only weak save. Intelligence gets you more skill points, and you are really skill starved. However, as a primarily spellcasting-focused character you're going to be disproportionately relying on your wisdom and that's where you'll find the best value.


You can do a good build leading to the Envoy of Balance prestige class.
The Envoy of Balance can give you advantages with both summoning and channeling energy, things you are thinking about anyway.

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