[Legendary Games] Legendary Shifter open playtest


Product Discussion

Silver Crusade

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Happy holidays, all! Today I bring you the gift of the legendary shifter playtest! This playtest will be going on for the next 3-4 weeks, and as time goes on, I'll no doubt be adding additional content to the project. I do hope that you'll enjoy it, and hope to see your comments!

Legendary Shifter Playtest


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Paizo ate my post

I like that you added a bite attack but have you thought about adding additional types of natural attacks that can be gained as you level so that the shifter can diversify it's attacks? Maybe gain a tail slap or a gore?

Shadow Lodge

I know being able to pick a natural attack and gaining choices would be pretty cool. Yes, you could pick two claws but maybe Slam gives a bonus to bull rush.


Overall, I like your work, but still feel it's missing something. I recommend a tweak to the aspect and replace the bonus feats & wildshape rapid shifts with "talents" gives flexibility that round out the class more.

Shifter Aspect: Keep the at-will minor aspects. Major aspects can be used 3+level for 1 minute.
Alternatively go with 1/2 level + Wis for 1 minute/level (see below).

Feral Focus: A shifter can study an opponent she can see as a move action. The shifter then gains a +1 bonus on Bluff, Knowledge, Perception, Sense Motive, and Survival checks attempted against that opponent, and a +1 bonus on weapon attack and damage rolls against it. The DCs of shifter class abilities against that opponent increase by 1. A shifter can only maintain these bonuses against one opponent at a time; these bonuses remain in effect until either the opponent is dead or the shifter studies a new target.

At 5th, 10th, 15th, and 20th levels, the bonuses on weapon attack, damage rolls, and skill checks and to shifter DCs against a studied target increase by 1. In addition, at each such interval, the shifter is able to maintain these bonuses against an additional studied target at the same time. The shifter may discard this connection to a feral focus as a free action, allowing her to study another target in its place.

At 7th level, a shifter can study an opponent as a move or swift action.

Wild Empathy: When using aspect, gain Wis mod as bonus for same animal type.

Bonus Feats & Wild Shape Shifts: Remove these and gain Shifter Talents at 2nd level and every two levels thereafter.
Shifter Talents:
Primal Scream: see Terrifying Howl. Level 6
Speed Shift, Lightning Shift & Instant Shift: Levels 6, 10, 18
Improved Chimeric Aspect: Use 2nd major aspect. Level 12
Greater Chimeric Aspect: Use 3rd major aspect. Level 16
Extended Aspect: Major aspects can be maintained for 10 minutes/level.
Favored Terrain: Gain favored terrain as a ranger. 1 per 4 levels
Adaptation: When using natural attacks that result in damage to a feral focus the shifter selects one ability or feat from the Infiltrator Ranger archetype and may use that ability in place of a major aspect.
Improved Adaptation: gain a 2nd ability or feat
Greater Adaptation: gain a 3rd ability or feat
Wildshape Feats: As notated in the playtest document.
Poison Resistance: At 2nd level, a shifter gains a +2 bonus on all saving throws against poison. This bonus increases to +4 at 5th level, and then again to +6 at 8th level. At 10th level, an alchemist becomes completely immune to poison.
A Thousand Faces:At 12th level, a shifter gains the ability to change her appearance at will, as if using the alter self spell, but only while in her normal form.
Swift Tracker (Ex): At 8th level, a shifter can move at her normal speed while using Survival to follow tracks without taking the normal -5 penalty. She takes only a -10 penalty (instead of the normal -20) when moving at up to twice normal speed while tracking.
One with the Wild (Ex): At 17th level, the shifter is respected or even feared by other animals, so long as the animals are approximately of the same type as any of the shifter’s current animal aspect: bat for bats, tiger with felines, falcon for birds, snake for reptiles, and so on. No animal in this category (including dire varieties) willingly attacks the shifter unless magically compelled to or if the shifter attacks it first.
The shifter can attempt to demoralize animals in the appropriate category as a swift action, rolling 1d20 and adding the shifter’s level and her Charisma modifier to determine the Intimidate check result.
Bonus Feats:As notated in the playtest document.
Etc: I recommend some slayer talents and Hunter's Tricks (Ranger archetype) be added to round out some options that fit.

Shadow Lodge

At first I read that as removing Wildshape. Taking a second looks it is just removing the Wildshape feats, correct? If so that could be a neat idea.


Dragonborn3 wrote:
At first I read that as removing Wildshape. Taking a second looks it is just removing the Wildshape feats, correct? If so that could be a neat idea.

I wasn’t very clear. Replace the bonus feats and wild shape fears with talents. Of course, these feats could be talent options to choose along with other non-feat talents.


Painful Bugger wrote:

Paizo ate my post

I like that you added a bite attack but have you thought about adding additional types of natural attacks that can be gained as you level so that the shifter can diversify it's attacks? Maybe gain a tail slap or a gore?

Look at some of the aspects. The narwhal, for one, gives you a gore attack


Onyewu wrote:

Overall, I like your work, but still feel it's missing something. I recommend a tweak to the aspect and replace the bonus feats & wildshape rapid shifts with "talents" gives flexibility that round out the class more.

Shifter Aspect: Keep the at-will minor aspects. Major aspects can be used 3+level for 1 minute.
Alternatively go with 1/2 level + Wis for 1 minute/level (see below).

What are you referring to when you say major aspects? I'm not finding them on the playtest.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
CactusUnicorn wrote:
Painful Bugger wrote:

Paizo ate my post

I like that you added a bite attack but have you thought about adding additional types of natural attacks that can be gained as you level so that the shifter can diversify it's attacks? Maybe gain a tail slap or a gore?

Look at some of the aspects. The narwhal, for one, gives you a gore attack

I saw, but I'm not exactly keen on aspects granting natural attacks.

Silver Crusade

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Okay, amazingly after having dropped the playtest I got sick because of course I did. So I'm slowly starting to get back into the swing of responding to things slowly, including this thread. I said it on GitP, and I might have gone a bit more conservative than I should with this class, and thus, I'm working on a newer way of shifting that'll start from level 1 with some limitations, but still work on the basic wildshape concept.

@Onyewu, I'm not a huge fan of adding talents to a class like this. There's honestly a huge draw to make every class a talent class, and I feel doing that waters down some classes. Aspects to me work well enough as these talents, so I'd really rather not change the wheel there, as there is some expectation of fidelity to a previous class in a project like this.

With that being said, hopefully later today or tomorrow, I should be rolling out some large changes to help give the class a more immediate shifting feel along with its own identity that pulls away from the exact wild shape mechanic while still keeping its spirit.


Alex Smith 908 wrote:
Onyewu wrote:

Overall, I like your work, but still feel it's missing something. I recommend a tweak to the aspect and replace the bonus feats & wildshape rapid shifts with "talents" gives flexibility that round out the class more.

Shifter Aspect: Keep the at-will minor aspects. Major aspects can be used 3+level for 1 minute.
Alternatively go with 1/2 level + Wis for 1 minute/level (see below).

What are you referring to when you say major aspects? I'm not finding them on the playtest.

Right...I forgot to suggest they be added back in. I’m not really a huge fan of major aspects as written. I prefer the way they are done as were-touched as a hybrid form.


N. Jolly wrote:

Okay, amazingly after having dropped the playtest I got sick because of course I did. So I'm slowly starting to get back into the swing of responding to things slowly, including this thread. I said it on GitP, and I might have gone a bit more conservative than I should with this class, and thus, I'm working on a newer way of shifting that'll start from level 1 with some limitations, but still work on the basic wildshape concept.

@Onyewu, I'm not a huge fan of adding talents to a class like this. There's honestly a huge draw to make every class a talent class, and I feel doing that waters down some classes. Aspects to me work well enough as these talents, so I'd really rather not change the wheel there, as there is some expectation of fidelity to a previous class in a project like this.

With that being said, hopefully later today or tomorrow, I should be rolling out some large changes to help give the class a more immediate shifting feel along with its own identity that pulls away from the exact wild shape mechanic while still keeping its spirit.

I understand the “everyone has talents” feeling, but I like options and flexibility. Yes, I do realize feats also do this, but I felt your version hardwires in feats, including wild shape whereas mine allows one to take them if desired or choose another path. Everyone can have feats. Talents are for select classes so they seem more interesting. Personal choice is all.

I’ve been dying for a Shifter for 10+ years and my concepts include everything but the kitchen sink. The current version feels more like a claw-fighter who turns into a tiger, bird, snake, etc. . I want a guy who can fight with claws but then become bird-man, tiger-dude, or serpent-guy but still go full animal change if he wants.
Blame it on comics...

But I’m still excited by your work. (I have all your kineticist stuff and it’s fantastic)


Good to have some free legendarily shifterin' playtestin' stuff out there. ;)

Silver Crusade

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Well we've got the first update out, and it's a big change from wild shape, as well as letting you shift from 1st level!


I like what's generally being done with dragon touched but it's breath weapon damage doesn't really seem to scale all that well. By level 5 or so your natural attack routine will always be preferable to your breath weapon.

If I were to ballpark it I'd guess that one damage die per two levels or so keeps the breath weapon at least interesting. So by level 20 you're getting 10d12+wisdom modifier which isn't world shattering but is still worth considering. About as good as two rogue sneak attacks but only usable once per round.

Shadow Lodge

This is awesome!

Liberty's Edge

Very interesting!


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Saturday night was the first time in awhile since my group got together and had a chance to game. I introduced them to the Legendary Shifter playtest. They didn't get a chance to read the full class as they were more interested in gaming but they had a few things to say about the new Shifter Shape ability and the Dragon Touched archetype. I've left some comments on the playtest document for them as I've been designated as the one to convey their messages in their place, curse of the Forever DM I suppose.

Mixed reactions but my player Joe was very pleased with the increased flexibility in wildshape. Although I wish the duration was longer, I maybe on the way of being won over when I saw Joe's eyes light up.


A character able to combine all these shape types would be a dream come true!

Shadow Lodge

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True Chimera archetype: Mix and match wildshapes? Beast Shape and Monstrous Physique, Elemental Body and Form of the Dragon, etc...

Scarab Sages

While I know many find the paizo Shifter under-powered, I worry that the bonus feats, expanded wild shape, increased natural attacks and other abilities might be swinging the pendulum to far in the other direction.


So far testing it with my players hasn't resulted in any major problems one way or another. The Legendary Shifter in the party is keeping up with the summoner's eidolon and the unchained monk. Each of the three has had plenty of places to shine but not overshadow the others.

Silver Crusade

Belabras wrote:
While I know many find the paizo Shifter under-powered, I worry that the bonus feats, expanded wild shape, increased natural attacks and other abilities might be swinging the pendulum to far in the other direction.

This was a concern, and I've tried balancing it against everything that already exists. The class has no innate attack boosting features unlike most full BAB classes, the bonus feats are in line with other class's bonus feats so it's generally pretty fair there, and nothing else has really shown to be a large issue. The best thing it has going for it is DR penetration, and even that is pretty tame compared to other end game class features, so at the moment, I'm feeling confident that it's in line with other martial classes.

Silver Crusade

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Also we've got two new archetypes up, the metamorph genius and oozeling!

The Oozeling is my take on oozemorph, while metamorph genius is my attempt to give the ability to shift into as many different forms as possible with alchemical casting.


I love it! Add some spells to transform into an object? (I have written something like that). And what about the Shapechange spell?

Silver Crusade

Bardess wrote:
I love it! Add some spells to transform into an object? (I have written something like that). And what about the Shapechange spell?

Where have you written something like that, I'd love to check it out and compare notes, since I'm wondering how best to do it. Also I've got a group on discord made for developers if you're interested in joining.


As someone who was sorely disappointed by the Shifter class as a whole and by the Oozemorph class in particular, I'm loving what I'm seeing so far. A minor nitpick: the description of Ooze Form could use some more concise language, I had to re-read it a few times to understand it because it used the word "form" many times in quick succession.

Silver Crusade

Shub-Niggurath's cousin Al wrote:
As someone who was sorely disappointed by the Shifter class as a whole and by the Oozemorph class in particular, I'm loving what I'm seeing so far. A minor nitpick: the description of Ooze Form could use some more concise language, I had to re-read it a few times to understand it because it used the word "form" many times in quick succession.

Okay, I'm working to fix that, although I'm glad to see that overall the oozeling is providing the experience people wanted for this concept. I'm hoping that the metamorph genus helps provide what people who loved the master of many forms wanted, as it has access to just about every transmutation effect in the game.


So if I understand the the Oozeling correctly they only take the penalties while in the base Protoplasmic Blob form, not while in their Humanoid Ooze shape or while using their Shifter/Ooze Shape ability. Same with the special bonuses like immunities to crits and flanking. Though Ooze Forms might grant those bonuses anyway.

But I think they still get all the Shifter Shape options, though it is not spelled out under Ooze Shape, but that the Ooze Shape simply alters it so that they add the Ooze Form spells as options for it, and removes the Magical Beast options.

I am not a fan of the limited wild shaping throughout a day, though the number of hours available and the ease at breaking them up into hour chunks, as well as later having daily uses of switching forms without expending hours, is better than the Shifter. And at least your version gets at will Shape Shift at 20th. And your aspects look like they are at will, which is good because many of the bonuses don't work as an activated minutes per day things.

The Oozeling still has a pretty major problem. It reverts to Protoplasmic Blob form when sleeping, and may have reason to take that form at other times. And since a number of magic items that are likely to be vital to the character require 24 hours of wearing to attune to that is going to cause problems. Also what happens to the magic items they were wearing when they go Protoplasmic Blob? Or when they use Ooze Shape for that matter?

Silver Crusade

Ryuujin-sama wrote:

So if I understand the the Oozeling correctly they only take the penalties while in the base Protoplasmic Blob form, not while in their Humanoid Ooze shape or while using their Shifter/Ooze Shape ability. Same with the special bonuses like immunities to crits and flanking. Though Ooze Forms might grant those bonuses anyway.

But I think they still get all the Shifter Shape options, though it is not spelled out under Ooze Shape, but that the Ooze Shape simply alters it so that they add the Ooze Form spells as options for it, and removes the Magical Beast options.

That's all correct. The class feature states that it alters shifter shape, not replaces it.

Quote:
I am not a fan of the limited wild shaping throughout a day, though the number of hours available and the ease at breaking them up into hour chunks, as well as later having daily uses of switching forms without expending hours, is better than the Shifter. And at least your version gets at will Shape Shift at 20th. And your aspects look like they are at will, which is good because many of the bonuses don't work as an activated minutes per day things.

I've heard people take issue with this, but I've also never had a person tell me that they've ever spent 24 hours in wild shape. Like ever. With how versatile the shifting is, there should never be a situation in which one is wanting for it, even at early levels unless they just want to spend a few hours as a horse for scouting, and even that seems rather unlikely.

Quote:
The Oozeling still has a pretty major problem. It reverts to Protoplasmic Blob form when sleeping, and may have reason to take that form at other times. And since a number of magic items that are likely to be vital to the character require 24 hours of wearing to attune to that is going to cause problems. Also what happens to the magic items they were wearing when they go Protoplasmic Blob? Or when they use Ooze Shape for that matter?

As it's a polymorph effect, the items are absorbed into their form, which as far as I'm aware does not inhibit attunement, so I'm not sure if there's an issue.

Silver Crusade

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For those of you who want to transform into all the things without having the baggage of alchemy, might I suggest the Polymorph Savant prestige class that has recently been added to the playtest? It gets a lot of the Legendary Shifter goodies, but loses some in order to get WAY more forms into which it can shift.


Beautiful! Could you add the object form spells to it too?
My object shape spells were originally made for the Multiclass Archetypes project. I'll tell you when they are online again, since the Pathfinder Community site is under reconstruction now.

Silver Crusade

Probably, I might replace the bonus feats with more forms, since forms are the big selling point here. And that's a shame, the playtest is going to be ending before I get the chance to see them.

I'll be ending the playtest officially in 3 days, so if anyone has any other feedback, please let me know and I'll check it out ASAPossible!


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If you want to see the spells, I'll put them in my blog tomorrow!

Silver Crusade

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Sure, I'd love to see how differently we both went about the same concept.


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So here they are

Silver Crusade

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Bardess wrote:
So here they are

It looks like you went in a very different way from what I did here, as I'm not a fan of giving hardness to creatures (it's basically DR with another name to me), while my spells tended to be more offensive. It's interesting to see the differences though.

Silver Crusade

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And so we've reached the end of the Legendary Shifters playtest. I'd like to thank everyone who participated, your feedback has helped make this a far better class, and I'll be taking the remaining feedback into consideration before releasing the final product. Thank you for your time, attention, and consideration!


Out of curiosity, do we have an ETA for when this might happen? I for one was very excited about the Shifter class concept, purchased the PDF, and was almost immediately disappointed.

I would love to be able to play a viable Shifter in PFS play, not just a Druid or Beastkin Barbarian.

Thanks for all your hard work on this!

Silver Crusade

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Krell44 wrote:

Out of curiosity, do we have an ETA for when this might happen? I for one was very excited about the Shifter class concept, purchased the PDF, and was almost immediately disappointed.

I would love to be able to play a viable Shifter in PFS play, not just a Druid or Beastkin Barbarian.

Thanks for all your hard work on this!

Well I can tell you that I just passed it off to the publisher, which means in the next week or so it'll hit editing while we wait for art and other considerations. Knowing the cycle, that could be anywhere between a few weeks and a month, but at this point it's out of my hands, so we can hopefully see it coming up soon depending on how much else is in the pipeline for LG (which is often a lot).


Jolly, what's your Discord group address? I'd like to join.

Silver Crusade

Bardess wrote:
Jolly, what's your Discord group address? I'd like to join.

Here's the link, but it'll only be active for a day. Anyone who's looking to break into rpg design is free to join though, as we're a very accepting group.

Scarab Sages Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4, Legendary Games

Krell44 wrote:

Out of curiosity, do we have an ETA for when this might happen? I for one was very excited about the Shifter class concept, purchased the PDF, and was almost immediately disappointed.

I would love to be able to play a viable Shifter in PFS play, not just a Druid or Beastkin Barbarian.

Thanks for all your hard work on this!

Alas, our book will not be much help in PFS, but will be great in your home game!

I'm reviewing the galleys from layout now, and we're waiting for one last piece of art, but we should be on target for a release the first week of February.


Aw. I saw the link too late. Could you post another, please?

Silver Crusade

Bardess wrote:
Aw. I saw the link too late. Could you post another, please?

Here you go, this one won't expire.

Scarab Sages Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4, Legendary Games

For those who participated in the playtest, you'll definitely want to check out
today's preview!

The book will be available starting this coming Monday!

Scarab Sages Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4, Legendary Games

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Legendary Shifters is here!

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