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I felt like the ABC thing already stretched its usefulness when they added the Heritages to the Ancestry. AhBCs (for subclass) doesn't quiet have the same ring unfortunately.


How high level are these PCs? The rules for Dispel Magic are you need to beat the caster's DC. For a 17th level caster who maxed out their casting stat that would be 40! If the players can't beat the Alarm they're going to alert the villain even if they know it's there.

If your players are high enough level that they can reasonably expect to beat a DC that high or slightly lower, well what would your villain do? They'd have to know that the only way someone can enter without alerting them would be if they were comparable to themselves in magical ability. I imagining some kind of a death trap that the villain has set up that would only go off if someone managed to enter while bypassing the alarm.


Blave wrote:

That has been brought up before.

I also added it to the possible APG-errata topic.

That's good to know, my google powers failed me when I tried to find if it had been raised as possible errata.


TL;DR: The fix is for Sorcerer Bloodlines to modify their Granted Spells with the Shadow Trait.

So now that the APG is out I went to roll up a sorcerer with the shadow bloodline.https://2e.aonprd.com/Bloodlines.aspx?ID=14
I check out it's level one bloodline spell and its Dim The Light, whenever you cast a darkness or shadow spell you can use a reaction to mess with the light in an area and immediately hide. That's pretty cool, and I start making my character with an eye towards utilizing it. It's only later that I discover that darkness and shadow refer to a specific trait of spells, and as a level one shadow sorcerer I don't have the ability to learn any spells with those traits. What gives? The initial bloodline spells are universally designed to provide a minor boost that any sorcerer of that bloodline can utilize. Well maybe things get better once I get 2nd level spells? Hardly, there's exactly one 2nd level spell with either descriptor and it's Darkness. How exactly does it benefit me to momentarily fuss with the lights to give a +1 to stealth a benefit when I'm already engulfing an area in blackness? It seems useless in the majority of situations you would use it in! At 5th level you finally get Chilling Darkness which seems to be the earliest opportunity to actually use your initial spell in some cool ways, but it's only after months of playing in real world time.

Now context would suggest to me that this is unintended. If it's suppose to be the case that the earliest feasible use isn't until 5th level the it should be the Advanced Bloodline Spell. Further, flavor wise it doesn't fit. Chill Touch, the bloodline's cantrip, is described as "...your hand radiates a pale darkness" and Grim Tendrils at 1st level starts with "tendrils of darkness curl out from your fingertips.' Furthermore, the shadow blood magic specifically saids that these spells have the additional effect of making shadows grow deeper.

Obviously I'm going to try to argue for a DM Fiat in the meantime, but it seems that officially there should be some sort of errata fix for this. I can think of 3 potential options:
1) The most narrow fix would be to change the requirements one Dim The Light to include spells granted by the bloodline.
2) You could change the Blood Magic description to add 'any spells that don't already have it gain the shadow trait.'
3) More broadly maybe it's Chill Touch and Grim Tendrils who should have the darkness trait given that their descriptions explicitly call out that you're manifesting it with your attack.


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Is something like this what you're looking for? https://i.redd.it/p7q0mkxipv551.jpg


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I love this!

Now I just wish there was a similar lay out for all the classes.


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For me it's Nat 1s mean you auto-fail outside of combat. As someone who loves playing skillful characters it's infuriating if my master thief has a 5% of falling on his face and alerting the guards whenever he does literally anything.


Gunslinger seems like the biggest hole to fill but the devs make it seem like it's definitely coming at some point in the next year or two.

Summoner is also tough not to have for conversion purposes (I.e. for anyone bringing characters over to the new edition they're the only other ones who are SOL). But the fact that the devs have tried twice and still couldn't really balance it and that by the time we do get it no one will be coverting campaigns anymore makes me skeptical of ever seeing it.

Mechanically, I really like the idea of getting a spontaneous/prepared counter point to the spellcasting traditions who don't have one yet. Like now that we have a prepared and spontaneous Divine casters and versatile casters thanks to the introduction of the witch and Oracle, I think it'd be cool if we got a true occultist who prepared their spells, or a re-flavored kineticist who used Arcane blasting. Then adapting the hunter from the ACG (probably with a different name) for spontaneous Primal would round out all 10 options.


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At last!


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https://2e.aonprd.com/Traits.aspx?ID=142

Here you go.


blackbloodtroll wrote:
Is there an archetype that replaces, or alters it, into something more viable?

Nope, every archetype affects alchemy, trap finding, or poison use.


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ParagonDireRaccoon wrote:

I have a question about archetypes- are there any archetypes so good they make other archetypes for that class obsolete? I know exploiter wizard is great, but I'm guessing a lot of players will still play other wizard archetypes.

My impression (having not picked up the ACG yet, I have to finish a research paper before I can spare the time) is that the new classes require less optimization and system familiarity. It looks like a brawler is easier to make effective at medium levels than a fighter (optimizing fighters is the topic of many other threads). The hunter gets mixed reviews, but looks like it should be easy to play compared to a druid or even ranger. So my impression is the new classes require less optimization and system familiarity to make effective, but are there any new archetypes that make you say 'everyone playing class X will use archetype Y now that the ACG is release'?.

Interesting point.... maybe? Probably, because a wider gap in power level among classes leads to a greater need for system mastery to compensate, and it doesn't appear as if any of the classes occupy that lower rung.

That being said, I find it kinda hilarious that you picked the brawler as an example of a class that require less "system familiarity." You know, with it's whole shtick being that it's a martial character with the complexity of a caster - the player needing to be familiar with what feats they want to use out of dozens of potential options :)


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Yes, it's a huge mystery how the people who post on the Paizo boards are big fans of Pathfinder. We'll never get to the bottom of that one I tell ya.


Great story. Sad to see though that there's no explanation for her spell casting abilities though.


I will join the rejoicing about hearing Dex-to-Damage will be considered!! Also a feat is more than I would have hoped. If it's just a Swashbuckler thing I'd understand, but a feat makes it much more useful and valuable for the broader game.

On an different issue of some controversy. Is there a reason given as to why they have poor Fort Saves? The Swashbuckler isn't a Rogue. It's parent classes had a good fort & ref and the other had fort as it's only good save. So can someone explain to me how the Gunslinger and Fighter combine to produce a class with a poor fort save.

Even from a design standpoint, why would you make a front line martial class and not give him good Fortitude? If the class was all about it's own mobility that'd be one thing, but as has already been discussed, that's not a part of the mechanical core of this class. And that's fine, but what then is the logic for them not having fortitude? Beyond the parent class argument (which, if that's important to you in creating "hybrid" class - see: Slayer skill points - is pretty big), the fact that Gunslingers, the class designed around their RANGED weapons, get it while Swashbucklers, a dedicated melee class, just doesn't add up.

lantzkev wrote:
why not just invest in an agile enchantment on your weapon if you're worried about dex to dmg?

To catch you up on the last several pages, the usual Dex-to-Dmg argument broke out. People asked for it as a class feature, people countered dex to damage is too good/broken, others pointed out that agile weapons and dervish dance are already a thing and clearly isn't, and then it just all devolved.

The problem can basically be summed up as this: on the meta-level that genie is out of the bottle, dex to damage exists in first-party-only pathfinder and thus is balanced with it. On the microlevel, whether or not one has access to these things is on a case by case basis (e.g.what if there are no Magic Marts?) and the current options are also very limiting (have to use a Scimitar or have to have this one enchantment as your second one always).

At the end of the day, you can't really try and split the difference by saying that something is too good to put in the game as a very valuable resource investment (feat), while simultaneously putting it in the game at 6000 gp and leaving it up to every individual play experience to hash it out.


Satchmo wrote:

Dot

So can a swashbuckler take weapon specialization?

You may want to read the post above you.

Regardless of if that ruling for all classes will happen, read the Swashbuckler bonus feat section again. Last line specifically says that Swashbuckler levels count as fighter ones.

At any rate it works out really nicely that you get a new bonus feat at each step of the Weapon specialization line.


master_marshmallow wrote:


Also this class needs a good Fort Save, and it really should just be an alternate class of the Gunslinger and not Fighter, unless you specifically plan to have it be capable of taking fighter only feats in the final release.

The last line of the Bonus Feats ability: "Swashbuckler levels are considered fighter levels for the purposes of meeting combat feat prerequisites."


Zark wrote:
Athaleon wrote:
Zark wrote:
ubiquitous wrote:

Let's put it this way:

Dex to damage ALREADY EXISTS in the game.

(Dervish Dance. Agile enchantment. The second isn't core, but is certainly in PFS, and a lot of people play PFS)

Are the classes that use Dex to Damage broken/overrunning the game?

No.

What more is there to say?

None of them are core and that is the big problem, Big with a capital B.

Doesn't matter if it's not core. It's still widespread, including in PFS, refer to my previous posts.

Sure it matters, because at some table the fact that they are not core does stop them from taking it.

Also, it isn’t really fair that those people that only get the Core book and then use the PRD won’t know there is such stuff as Dervish Dance or Agile enchantment.

@The Devs. If you don’t want people to dump strength why not create a feat similar to Dervish Dance but add a 13 strength to the prerec? Or add Power attack, or any other feat that requires 13 strength, to the prereq.

Core is not the issue, because the fact of the matter is that they are 1st party martial, made by the same exact people, and good to go in official organized play, never mind the people who bought the books anyway. And since things like the SRD make no distinction between what's in which line, if you want to make that big dividing line that's up to you and your table but it in no way effects the status of Pathfinder as whole where those things exist and are an option.

Also, the Power Attack, far from being a feat pre-req, is a perfect example of why the "strength will be obsolete" argument doesn't hold water. Everyone making Swashbucklers right now knows they are a d10, full-BAB, melee martial class. A SB without Power Attack is worse than one with it, thus most builds are gunning for 13 Strength with no thought towards damage reasons.

Torbyne wrote:
Steal a page from the Archaeologist, have charmed life add charisma modifier to all rolls until the start of your next turn. Now I will spend an action on it and it's powerful enough to justify the x per day bit. If it's a high enough point buy.

100% this. Make the per day advancement stricter as you need to, but this seems awesome especially given the flavor. It's not just making a save, it's about narrowly avoiding that brute while tumbling through the battle field, or scoring the lucky hit. Either do this, or make it a free action you can take any time before you roll a save.


File not found :(


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Furious Kender wrote:
I am one of those GMs who hate those builds, but only because every one of them is effectively the same scimitar+shocking grasp build. It's like they're playing an iconic, and just changing the name. In PFS, unless some change happens, I expect the swashbuckler to have the same mind numbing sameness. Oh, and if the magus in PFS, which is always a Dervish Dancer, is broken, the 4-8 damage coming from Dervish Dance clearly isn't the cause.

This, this right here is why I hate this situation. It's not just that Dex to Damage clearly isn't overpowered, or that the developers say they can't do it and then put it in their game no problem, it's that the flavor restriction that doesn't affect game balance, but makes the actual play experience worse.

If everyone should up to play with their usual finesse weapons it'd be fine. No one has an issue with the current range of finesse combatants - knife masters, shorts swordsman, flourishing rapiers, or other more unorthodox and unique options. But when a feat in the game is tied to a very particular, very unique flavor, and means everyone is wielding the same damn weapon, well thats' a problem. Ooo fascinating, you belong to a unique society with a signature and wholly originally combat style that's awesome. Oh what's that, now every Dex melee characters has the same training and their all using the same exact weapon? It sucks the originality out of characters in the name of game balance which doesn't even make sense!


Rogue Eidolon wrote:
ubiquitous wrote:
So, to tie all this discussion back into the Swashbuckler, do people think that all Magus's Dervish Dancing is due to Dex-To-Damage being a really strong option overall, or just a really strong option for that class due to specific circumstances (one-handed, high crit, dex-based)?
I agree, the feat for magi is only overpowered because the magus specifically is one-handed, high crit, and dex-based. However, here's the issue--those three are all true for swashbuckler as well.

But what about the feat is overpowered? Yes most Magi to focus on Dex and one handed wielding. The fax that most of them do does not make it overpowered. Yes, if there were a Dex to Damage option for the Swashbuckler, most would take it and be that build...which is exactly what's suppose to happen.

What needs to be shown though, is why that is overpowered! Most people allege that it is because it would obsolete other martial types, but if the only ones who use it en masse are the classes specifically designed around one handed fighting, then contrary to making your case, it disproves your argument that it would be superior to other combat options .


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Rogue Eidolon wrote:
Dervish Dance actually is overrunning PFS for all classes and archetypes that need to use one hand, such as magus and if you search the PFS boards, you will find that some GMs dislike having these super-high-AC super-high-damage magi at their tables due to power reasons (I'm not one of them, but I've seen others post to that effect). One time recently there was a magus who used something other than a scimitar, and people were very surprised.

Your argument is that Dervish Dance is is perfect for builds that use one hand? What? In similar news I hear Power Attackers are overrunning all classes and archetypes that use two handed weapons and/or Strength.

The question isn't if Dex-to-Damage will be to go to option for Dex-based characters, of course it will! The question is whether or not those Dex based characters will be a) too good or b) make it so being a Dex-based martial class will become the clearly optimized builds for melee characters.


MechE_ wrote:
Tels wrote:
If the Design Team wants to back up the claim that Dex to damage is too strong, then they need to show hundreds of play examples, theory craft, and builds that show just how broken Dex to damage really is.
The "we're right and they're wrong" attitude that's present is exactly the reason that they simply ignore all conversations regarding dex to damage. I've always found that he who cannot set aside his own biases and open his mind to see things from another man's perspective is unlikely to have perspectives I care to look at the world from...

While you're right, and the tone of some of the posts definitely need to be taken down a notch or two (come on guys, the Devs are people too, and doing a herculean effort in reading everything we says), I would like to point out that one of the biggest issues of contention at the moment, is that we're not having a theoretical debate.

Dex to Damage exists and no one has a problem with it. The question is why are people (the Devs) okay with a +2 Sword that does it, or a feat that specifies one weapon for flavor reasons and requires one handed weapon, but not a general feat that does that exact same thing?

We know Dervish Dance is fine in PFS, so why can't you have the same exact feat printed in a rulebook that just specifies finesse weapons instead of Scimitars?

Or even something along the lines of a feat that just does Dex to Damage with Finesse Weapons, but requires a +8 BAB or Combat Expertise as part of the pre-reqs?


Prince of Knives wrote:

Beyond damage, beyond the complaints about weaponry (personally I think a Swashbuckler with a trident is awesome), my big issue with this class is mobility. There's some concessions to it! But ultimately Swashbuckler still suffers from the Melee Problem where they can deal damage or they can move, but they can't do both. The Deeds that enhance certain mobility-related things (Derring Do etc) don't help with this conflict whatsoever. Even 3.5 Swash had greater concessions to this (at least if I'm remembering right - Acrobatic Charge would be the ability name).

Letting melee move is letting melee do its job. At level 5 or so the flying and teleporting and various miscellaneous movement things come online and melee stops being able to either shield the softer members of the party or go after softer opponents. Letting Swash move will help with at least that latter part.

While I agree, I can easily imagine this being one of the Swashbuckler archetypes - the mobility orientated swashbuckler.


Here's the issue and I would love it if someone could please explain this to me - why are we pretending that DEX to damage doesn't exist? Hmm?

Agile Weapons are in the game. And costed at the equivalent of a +1 enhancement, or 2,000 Gold.

Generally speaking, in games outside the highest levels, being able to get a weapon enhancement is better than a feat. Why waste a limited feat slot on Improved Critical if you can make you weapon Keen instead with limited resource wasting?

Further, everyone and their mother knows about Dervish Dance at this point, and people are fine with it. It requires that you go one-handed, but is there any reason at all it needs to be Scimitar as opposed to any Finesse-able weapon?

Dex to damage has existed in the game for years at this point, being played in Pathfinder Society and around a bunch of kitchen tables. Is it broken/unbalanced/obsolete all other combat styles?

NO! It's a very specific, very niche, feat intensive way of doing things.

So can someone please explain to me why people are arguing about whether or not it's too good like some hypothetical? We already have it and we already know that it's not!


I love the flavor of Studied Strike, but worry about the action economy involved (you only get 1 attack every two turns, so is the extra Xd6 really worth it?)

Never mind, just found the Quick Study Talent. Perfect, Investigators who utilize this ability and are wading into melee get a pretty decent deal (sneak attack all the time with an attack roll bonus to boot, at the cost of full attack options and a d6 delay in the progression)

That being said, I'd like to point out that this is addressing on of the biggest issues of the Investigator - that sneak attack made it too good in combat as to be nearly on par with the rogue.

The Investigator should be be a Rogue who uses Extracts instead of Swords and Knives.


Good job with combining Parry and Riposte into one move.

My problem is one that I know was mentioned in regards to the survey - but the Swashbuckler class still has 0 decisions to be made in terms of class features. The bonus feats are nice, but doesn't actually address the issue that a martial class that's already defined by a specific combat style also has the least number of choices of any class, being the only one in Pathfinder that doesn't make a single decision beyond their feats.


With 5-6 I'm assuming a best case scenario type of situation. (16-18 Cha, Extra Panache feet, etc.)

But I am still going to argue that Parrying should be the free one (as long as you have one point left) and Riposte the one that costs.

Otherwise if the Riposte is free there's literally no reason to separate the abilities as literally every successful parry would be joined by a Riposte. So in essence you'd be eliminating Parry ability to just a default part of Riposte's effect.

The issue with the current parry is that you have to roll insanely good just for it to be successful in the first place (since they would have had to hit you in the first place for you to get the benefit). Placing a one round limit on it and requiring a point in your pool to boot wood mean that you definitely limit it's actual effect so nothing's getting out of hand.

My logic is that the Swashbuckler should be parrying off pretty consistently in combat as that's there schtick. Riposte is the more daring move that requires effort and allocation of resources.


LoneKnave wrote:
PrC dipping was a symptom, not the disease. The disease was "holy s~!$, the base classes suck!". Possibly also "holy s~*&, this continues my casting 1:1 AND I get class features now? Sign me up!" on the side.

This. The fact that Prestige Classes are now an option rather than a default is how they should be. I personally hope that Paizo does use the Advanced CLASS Guide to give us some more unique options in that regard, but in the meantime, making base classes good enough to single class in isn't a nerf to multiclassing and prestige classes, it's making those options what they always should be - optional.

And as someone who can never seem to get through a campaign without making some kind of dip if not outright multi class combo, I can attest to how available those tools still are.


House rule whatever you want, alignment restrictions have no effect on game balance.

Really the only alignment restrictions I like are the ones where it's obvious that the class itself is derived from the alignment - so Paladins and Monks. The entire point of both those classes is that you get your abilities from follow a code, a way of life. That it is through taking your vows and learning within your system that you become a member of your class. For Monks it could be any conceivable monastic tradition or method of study, while for Paladins the sword hand of the divine has an inherently Good code.

Similarly, Clerics having to hew close to their god is perfect because of course their divine blessings only come from gods who would be pleased with their actions.

Others are take it or leave it. Like in 3.5, Bards can't be lawful? Why?! What about being a Bard and accessing your inner magic through song is prevented by being a lawful person? Lawful people can be creative too you know, thats' not how alignments work!

Similarly, the fact that Druids have to be Neutral. Why, because the word Neutral is close to Nature? Pre-3rd, when Druids were essentially a PrC with a very specific flavor, having them be True Neutral was a reasonable interpretation of their connection of nature. But with 3rd onwards, it makes no sense. Why can a Druid be Lawful or Good but not both? A Druid can't believe in the law and order he sees within nature while also being a good person?

The Barbarians are the in-between case for me. Personally, I don't know how I would make a Barbarian (someone who, by definition, was a crazed societal outcast who's key to success was flying into mindless rages in combat). That being said, since nothing about an individual being lawful prevents getting really angry while fighting, if a player had a cool idea for a Lawful Barbarian character that made sense, I'd allow it in heartbeat.


Tels wrote:
Cheapy wrote:
Tels wrote:
Oh, I forgot to mention that the Slayer will receive some changes too, though minor. They were going to try and build in some options for the Slayer to get his SA at range, and may include some feats to expand the option for range SA, though he doesn't want the Slayer to be able to SA from, like, 100 ft away.
Oh ho ho, really?
Not sure if you're for or against this bit. Personally, I'm a little hesitant as archery is already powerful. Sneak Attack Archery, if it becomes legitimately viable could be really, really powerful.

Archery is powerful? Since when? It got a lot of love with Pathfinder, don't get me wrong, but there's a reason why they're generally rarer than standard martial types like two handed weapon wielders. And just going off of Rogues, Sneak Attack Archery is so bad compared to anything else a SA class can do that it's not even worth it thanks to PF effectively nerfing the most consistent ways to get people flat-footed from 3.5


Kolokotroni wrote:
Cheapy wrote:
Wait what? Parry and riposte for no cost? Where did Stephen say that?
Stephen mentioned he was thinking about it or at least that was my impression of this post.

And it would make a lot of sense too. Crane Wing is already something that can be used with a mere 1-level dip into the Style Monk archetype, and it gains you turn a hit into an automatic miss once per round

As currently written, Swashbuckler Parry requires you to make an attack roll higher than your opponent's without seeing if they're going to hit you first, and requires you to spend a point from your pool each and every time (which is going to be starting at what, 5 or 6 points?).

And while Crane Wing is sweeeeet, the fact is that with it just sitting out there it feels hard to justify why this combat style feat is so superior to the Swashbuckler's signature ability. The only thing I'd be concerned about is the two of them stacking, but that requires all of a sentence to fix.


Well that makes a lot of sense. Thanks for the link.


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magnuskn wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:
So it is safe to assume that the revised playtest will be next week if everything goes according to plan.
That would not leave a lot of time for the actual playtesting. I hope they get the revisions right, then.

I hope they'll consider extending the play test, or doing a second round in a couple months.

Let's say they come out with the updated one at the start of next week, so the 9th. That leaves approximately 1 week for feedback on the redesigned classes as opposed to the nearly 3 weeks the originals got. For most of the classes that should be mostly fine, but for classes like the Arcanist, Warpriest, Hunter, and Skald that are getting large initial overhauls, that seems problematic.


Did Parry feel 'too good' or did it bog down combat with the House Rule?

While I feel this is a really nice way to do it (much better than having, what, once or twice a day depending on how good you are at killing things?) given that it's the class' signature ability. I'd be afraid that getting it for free essentially would just mean that every round would equal - okay I roll to parry, does he still hit? Giving you a big boost and/or slowing down combat quite a bit.


Robert Jordan wrote:
Having this information is great but also disappointing as it shows that the class I wanted changed the most is "working as intended". I've got 9 other classes to make up for the one that's gonna be a wash for me and my table though so that's a good thing.

One thing to note is that, from a design perspective, different classes are made for different players (just like how Magic: The Gathering has popularized their own player psychographics). It's the reason why people have favorites and least-favorites among all the core classes, even. So having one class that doesn't draw you, personally, in and make you want to play it isn't unusual or even bad (though that being said, if the class doesn't appeal to anyone, thats' a big problem).

In the meantime, thanks for giving updates on the survey results so far! I'm really heartened to see that the Swashbuckler will be getting actual options in character creation, since that's the fatal flaw in my most anticipated class at the moment. Even just something along the lines of a greater range of Deeds, but having to select the ones you want as you level up.

Good luck on the hunter and war priest. I think the Hunter is mainly an issue of giving it a power boost, as the core concept is quite solid. I hope you're not afraid to do for the War Priest what you just did for the Arcanist though.


I'd be very okay if the mechanics stayed the same, but the Spellbook itself got dropped or tweaked.

Wizards have always been defined by their spell book - just as Sorcerers are by their innate potential in their blood, and Witches by their patrons. The Magus uses one, but is clearly a wizard who has split his talents between spells and combat.

If that Arcanist is still unique enough it won't be an issue, but if he uses a spell book and it's just his mechanics that are somewhat different, than it does take away from the definition of Wizard.


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Bravo on the change.

I know your not touching the core spell casting mechanic, but when you're fiddling with the numbers, I'd much rather have a slightly weaker core casting ability in exchange for more impactful class abilities.


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I'm not voting that we just scrap the Warpriest, but as it stands, the Priest concept immediately grabs me in a way that the Warpriest does not. 3.P Clerics are already designed to be battle clerics. Meanwhile the Paladin is also a thing. So I'm not sure what the Warpriest is suppose to represent that a Cleric doesn't.

I immediately see why a Priest is new and interesting compared to a Cleric though.

And may I just say, the idea of making one of it's abilities the Bard's inspiration is truly... inspired.


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Have they said whether or not they'd ever reprint world guide/adventure path mechanics in core books?

Because I was thinking that something like the Advanced Class Guide would be the ideal place to take successful archetypes, such as the Lore Warden, from setting guides and put them in one easy to find place. Kind of like how that was one of the main purposes of 3.5's Complete books back in the day.


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1) I like the idea of having Swashbuckler have Charisma as their main mental stat. Swashbucklers who really want the Int option already have Duelist (I'd be very interested to see how a Swashbuckler entry into Duelist works out). And in the ACG we already have the Slayer, the Int-focused melee class.

2) Having tried out building a Swashbuckler at various levels, one thing sticks out to me - it's super limiting.

The swashbuckler is unique in that it is the only class designed around a single style of fighting. No other melee class does this outside of archetypes. The fighter is a blank slate, the monk is given a whole host of special "monk weapons" to make up for not having the normal breadth of options when it comes to weapons. The Ranger originally asked for you to pick one of two to specialize in, but that was still incidental to it's larger class and nothing depended on either style beyond bonus feats.

The Swashbuckler is designed from the ground up to be a one handed, no shield, melee fighter. It has to use a light or one-handed piercing weapon. Already we're in super limited space. The importance placed on critical hits means Rapier is the only logical option. Not optimized option. Logical. The class could just say Rapier and be done with it.

Aaand you're done. There is not a single unique class ability to actually choose form (unprecedented from Pathfinder, as that was one of it's big innovations with the Core classes). You just receive your Panache abilities. All you have to decide are your feats, of which you get a bonus one every four levels.

So when it comes to decision making as a player building this class, the options available to you are less than those available to someone making a Core-only Fighter in 3.5 (because they get more feats and still get to choose their combat style).

Sorry, but that's okay, and I am one of the people who do want to play that exact Swashbuckler concept! Just not if other people are building my character for me.


Do you think it would be possible just to make a rule that gives the Slayer any Rogue talents that correspond to it's class features? (i.e. all the sneak attack effects would be far game, but not the ones related to Trap Finding)


I believe they already mentioned that one of the Swashbuckler archetype will be about a greater incorporation of firearms.


I'm glad to see where actually getting a bit of playtesting reactions, even if this is from the DM reasons.

So putting aside the different flavor of the classes, if you were making this character, would you ever decide to go Sorcerer over Arcanist. Why?


I'm loving this class. I feel like I've tried to make this character many times where it never quite worked, so bravo.

I will say, I'm glad it only has 4 skill points. One of the biggest dangers is how much potential this has to invalidate the Rogue. The Rogue already lost out big time in Pathfinder thanks to the skill system no longer being so byzantine. With no cross-class ranks and everyone able to deal with traps, the Rogue lost a ton of it's niche from 3.5. So other than it's skill points and trap finding expertise, what does it have? Sneak Attack, Talents, Evasion, Uncanny Dodge.

So the Slayer gets the first two in some capacity, and the second two aren't huge (you get them at around 2nd-4th level in other classes). The point being that the Slayer has a very real chance at just stepping all over the Rogue's toes. It's designed to be better in melee, but thanks to the forgiving skill system, any class can do its speciality if the designers aren't to careful.

I also love the subtle design choice in prioritizing Intelligence as a potential secondary stat. It fits the flavor perfectly and I've always longed for a melee class that cared about Int. With the class skill list and starting at 4, it open the door to builds that have good intelligence allowing for a particularly skillful combatant, as well as synergizing with the assassinate talent and the Capstone.

One nitpick, getting a bonus on Bluff from Favored Target but not having it be a class skill is weird and unintuitive.


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Two things:
1) The flavor, I neeeeeds it. Maybe it's just me, but one of the thing that really drives home the desire to try new classes is the flavor. Classes like the Investigator, Slayer, and Shaman speak to unique character types that haven't yet been fully possible. The Arcanist is...a Wizard with some Sorcerer blood. Huh? It's existence seems entirely mechanical.

2) Speaking of the mechanics, am I missing something here? So the Sorcerer trades 1 spell per level per day. And they trade a bloodline for getting to trigger a bloodline power as a standard action X times per day. And in exchange they do away entirely with the conceptual drawback of the Sorcerer - the limited spells known?!

Further, it seems that we've taken two of the most OP classes in the game, made them more powerful, and less mechanically interesting (there's a reason PF Sorcerer became beloved thanks to the Bloodlines).

All-in-all, I'm confused.


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I'm looking to make a Holy Vindicator, but I've heard conflicting answers about the channel energy ability. To quote, it says:

"The vindicator’s class level stacks with levels in any other class that grants the channel energy ability."

So if I were to have a Life Oracle 3/Hospitaler Paladin 4/Holy Vindicator 10, would both my Oracle channel energy and my Paladin channel energy go up with each level of Holy Vindicator?
So at level 10 I could channel energy as a 6th level Oracle and a 7th level Paladin?

I'm confused because the wording is so vague. They don't use standard template for Prestige Classes which is "as if he had also gained a level in a [relevant ability] class."

If it was suppose to be only one class, wouldn't it say "any one class" or "another class" instead of "any other?"
If it was suppose to be any applicable class, why not just say "all other classes" instead of "any?"

And if I have to pick only one, do I need to do it when I pick the class? Can I change my pick later?

The ability is ridiculously vague to me and it's driving me crazy. Can someone please help?


Big fan of this guide.

Btu a PSA for everyone, the latest errata just changed the INT AC Bonus to a dodge bonus instead of adding it to your DEX. That means that you can wear armor and still get the full bonus of a high DEX and INT to your AC!!


Good choice with the Sage Sorcerer, since I've always thought spontaneous casters are more flavorful for the magical rogue, but the Int is more important for Arcane Trickster synergy (mostly skill points).

I know there are guides on these boards that go into way more compressive advice than I can give here, breaking down every feat and spell choice. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1IZBcQbZlN5psPppnuQvOO3xJ5P84tI6UNPiQz5_ jEGc/edit

A couple major things though. If you're using traits, get magical knack. If you're not using traits, convince your GM to use traits because they're awesome. Then get magical knack since it allows you to count up to two non-casting class levels for your total caster level. If your'e using the recommended two traits, then probably get Reactionary since the two people who really love initiative are the casters and the sneak attackers, and your both (also why you'll probably want to get Improved Initiative at some point).

Second, the best thing you can do as an Arcane Trickster is take a level of Rogue and a level of some other Prestige class that gets you 1d6 sneak attack at first level. It won't speed up you're entry into Arcane Trickster at all, but it will make you only miss 2 spell levels instead of 3 which is more powerful than anything else. (3 levels of Rogue and 3 levels of Sorcerer means you'll be getting you're first 3rd level spells while your equal level Wizard and Cleric buddies are getting their 5th level spells). In the CRB your only option is Assassin, which obviously means you have to be an evil alignment. If you and you're GM are into that though, do it, since 1 Rogue/4 Sorcerer/1 Assassin is better than 3 Rogue/3 Sorcerer.

If you have more options though. Paizo's Prestige Class book gave us the Sleepless Detective. Same deal as above, but replace Assassin at 6th level with the Sleepless Detective. Not only do you get that spell level, over the Rogue path, but you get much better abilities with at-will Detect Magic, and, this is big, adding your Intelligence modifier when using Perception, Sense Motive, and gathering information. HUGE skills for the Rogue, and one you'd otherwise be subpar at with your 10 Wis.
http://www.d20pfsrd.com/classes/prestige-classes/other-paizo/s-z/sleepless- detective

Finally, Toughness is a fantastic feat for you. Weapon Finesse is good eventually, your choice on when to grab it depending on your combat style. Don't forget Precise Shot and Point-Blank Shot since Ranged Touch Attacks (which get sneak attack damage) still have the normal rules as Ranged Attacks.


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Callum wrote:
Majuba's view that the holy vindicator's channel ability can only stack with one other class is a reasonable interpretation, too. When would you pick which class to stack with, though? Could you change that selection later? The ability really needs some more words in it to explain clearly how it's intended to work.

Agreed. I really don't understand why they choose the wording they did. If they meant it for it to stack every instance of channel energy, why not say all classes instead of any? If they meant for it to be used with only one, why not use the standard language they use in every other instance (including the Vindicator's spell casting) and say 'in A class that grants channel energy.'

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