Cadvin's page

45 posts. No reviews. No lists. No wishlists.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
LordInsane wrote:
What - non-racial - options are there to get mind-affecting effects at level 1 as an Avowed? I noticed frightening pulse doesn't actually say it is mind-affecting, and it seems a bit annoying in play to have an avowed character whose attunement does nothing until level 6.

Uses of the Intimidate skill are definitely mind-affecting fear effects, and while I can't seem to find a definite answer James Jacobs seems to imply that all fear effects are mind-affecting (And common sense too, if nonmagical fear doesn't affect something magical fear probably won't unless specifically called out). So Frightening Pulse is probably mind-affecting just by virtue of being a fear effect.

I can't help but feel that splitting up Hidden Knowledge into four parts is a little too much. There are still character concepts I might take Volksgeist or Dungeon Crawler for, but unless it was a very unusual campaign it'd be a flavor choice taken at the expense of something useful. Like you say, I could be walking up walls, or at least getting a bonus to skills that are often used via Silver Tongue. I'm halfway through DMing Rise of the Runelords, and the number of times the players have actually had to roll any of the skills in Volksgeist or Dungeon Crawler (Excepting situations where they could just look at a map. Including the map I printed out. It's right there on the table guys) is barely in the double digits. For about half of those a successful diplomacy check with the townsfolk would also have given an answer. I do think Hidden Knowledge was edging dangerously close to the "always pick" category before, but right now all of its components except maybe Survivalist seem to be at the verge of "never pick".

On the positive side, I really enjoy what's happening with the Elemental pact. Making it good at raw damage not by boosting the damage itself, but by giving it ways to deal with enemies that it misses? It works and feels better than just pumping up numbers. You never feel useless but you also don't completely wreck anything with low AC or saves.

Bodhizen wrote:

From a gold piece perspective...

When you purchase a hull, you get X number of points (for free) to purchase additional systems (engines, weapons, tactical components, etc...). The gp price of additional components is to create alternative systems, or for selling off a component on your vessel for some quick gold, or for scavenging a part off a derelict vessel for gold, or for worldbuilding, or for buying a better engine and selling the old one... There's a lot that you can do with it!

I found the point buy system to be simpler (like building eidolons), but we wanted to provide viable alternatives for people who don't like that system....

Great, thank you very much for the clarification!

1 person marked this as a favorite.
cartmanbeck wrote:
That and also for later replacing/repairing/upgrading. If you have the same ship for an entire campaign, at some point you might need a new engine... :)

True. In a lot of cases this'll be more expensive than just buying a new ship, which seemed weird at first but when I think about my own car it becomes all too real.

Bodhizen wrote:

Hello, and thank you for your question!

So, when you purchase a hull, it comes with an available point buy. Let's say you purchase a freighter. That means that you get 19 points to spend on whatever you want to put on that hull. You want a fast engine? You're going to pay more than you would for a lesser engine. You want lots of weapons? You're going to have fewer points for that fast engine, or other systems you want to add in. This is all fairly standard.

When it comes to template packages, you could drop 10 of your 19 points into a basic rogue vessel, and then spend the additional 9 points on other things. Maybe, instead, you wish to apply the vagabond template, spending 18 of your 19 points, leaving you 1 left. Perhaps you'd rather spend on the protective escort vessel template. Unfortunately, as you only have 19 points to spend, you cannot purchase that package since it costs 24 points, but you could apply it to a cruiser hull if you so desired.

The available point buy you get with your hull is the maximum number of points that you can spend on that hull, and they're all free....

I think so. Just to make sure: from a GP cost perspective, you only need to worry about the hull, and the GP price of the additional components is mostly for GMs to create alternative systems or for worldbuilding?

cartmanbeck wrote:
Don't forget that the ships come with a built-in point buy. So if you have your party start off with a simple Corvette, they have 9 points of point buy to add things like engines (a Phase Box costs 4 points, Raid Boosters cost 2, etc.) I assumed that these points could be freely spent on such a ship at the start of a campaign, so that you can let your players customize their ship to how they want it (including with engines) without going millions of gold in debt. :)

That's what I thought at first, but the Template Packages seem to contradict this and treat the point buy as a maximum limit rather than a free buy-in.

Ah well- ship-to-ship combat was never going to be a priority anyway, so we'll probably just play fast and loose with the monetary rules. It'll keep them from selling their ship for loot and a few scrolls of Interplanetary Teleport anyway.

I hope I'm wrong, but I can't figure out how space travel isn't prohibitively expensive even with the extra ship wealth by level. PCs get a free ship at level 1, but it's not going to do them any good if it can't move. The cheapest engine (Starwind) is 160,000gp, which a party of four can only begin to afford at level 5. With this engine it'll take them roughly 10 years to travel from one side of a solar system to the next, so it's not exactly ideal from an adventuring standpoint, but it might could work in a small Firefly-esque cluster.

Interstellar travel is pretty much outside of a party's means at all outside of spells or slipstreams, as reliably traveling a parsec without dying of old age takes at least a Phase Box, which is only affordable by a party of 4 at level 19. The Gravity Whip is completely unattainable, costing over eight times what said party's pooled ship wealth is at level 20.

Is there something I'm missing here? It's an obvious fix to just adjust the prices to reasonable levels for my campaign, but it'd be nice to know if it's really as broken as it seems before doing so.

I notice that Aether Grasp provides a lot of bonuses to your Grapple CMB, but none to CMD (Which is pretty bad news for a medium BAB character, but might be a legitimate balancing decision). Is Grasp intended to be rather easy to escape/reverse?

N. Jolly wrote:
It's round to round, as it works well with both of those and the new striker talents. It should say that the bonus only lasts until the beginning of your turn, which is why I tried to cap benefits at +4, since that seemed reasonable to me. If you really invest though, you could probably hit a higher bonus than that. I might play around with that text later, possibly set some hard guidelines for how much of a bonus you can build.

Thanks! That what I thought from the wording, I was just a bit confused because I didn't think it would be at all useful... until today's session that is, where I actually played a Striker. I didn't realize just how many attack rolls I'd be making per turn, even at low levels!

I mean, Combo Rhythm didn't really come into play because my rolls were utter trash, but if the dice gods were with me the ability would've been great.

N. Jolly wrote:
Mostly replying to get the 600th post, but yeah, I like it too. Also check out the Striker, it has an update to make it MORE video gamey.

I like it, especially the splitting up of Desperate Tension and Rising Tension, but I'd appreciate some clarification on Combo Rhythm. Does it "stack" between rounds? For instance, if you make a single successful attack roll on round 1, then again on round 2, will the bonus end up as +2? Or is it purely a round-to-round bonus intended for use with Rapid Pummel and Set Up Flurry?

The Sage's rework still leaves me concerned for the biggest issue the class has in my opinion: its low BAB for the purposes of talents and feats. At the moment it seems geared towards having a big numerical advantage on combat maneuvers, but overall less effectiveness when they're used at higher levels (For instance, many Scoundrel talents upgrade at 10 BAB, which isn't until level 20 for the Sage). Personally, I'd rather have the wise old master class be lacking in class features in exchange for more effectiveness on talents, rather than the other way around.

Since Paragon recently switched from Charisma to Wisdom focused I'm reminded of something I wanted to ask. Is it in the plan to allow certain classes to change their "primary" stat, like in Spheres of Power?

2 people marked this as a favorite.
pixierose wrote:
Hi can somebody go into more detail about the spirtualist and its archetypes? I havent head much discussion on it and its the class I am most excited for

The Spiritualist get some cool stuff! Firstly, they get lots of ectoplasmic flavored spells with their 6 level casting, plenty of debuffs which play nicely into their phantom's Deliver Touch Spells. By level 10 you'll have picked up some nice spell-like abilities: Detect Undead at will, and Calm Spirit and See Invisibility once per day each. But the real star of the show is of course the phantom.

There are three states your phantom can be in: Banished to the Ethereal Plane (Shouldn't ever happen ideally), in your noggin, or fully manifested. While it's in your consciousness, you can use Bonded Manifestation to call upon it to enhance you, giving you armor bonuses and tentacles or concealment against ranged attacks, ghost touch, and eventually becoming incorporeal.

If you choose to fully manifest it using a 1-minute ritual, you can choose either Ectoplasmic or Incorporeal form, and switch between them as a full round action on your part. While incorporeal the phantom can only attack other incorporeals, but can still deliver spells and gets the obvious advantages of being a spooky ghost (Which is actually an outsider, but still). While ectoplasmic it trades all that stuff away in exchange for being able to affect the world in any meaningful way.

Each phantom has an emotional focus which determines its special abilities, good saves, and skills (You get two per HD that you can put anywhere, but you also get free ranks in two others. You also get Skill Focus in these skills when the phantom is stored in your consciousness).

All of the Spiritualist's archetypes are really solid. The Ectoplasmatist gives away the phantom, instead gaining an ectoplasmic tendril (Or two) that grows in power, manual dexterity, and length. She also gets ectoplasmic armor and the magus's spell combat and spellstrike.

The Fractured Mind casts with charisma and trades away her spell-like abilities for other spell like abilities.

The Geist Channeler always manifests her phantom incorporeally, but at level 5 it starts to be able to damage corporeal creatures. Basically trades offense for defense.

The Haunted's phantom can draw upon her, inflicting penalties to make itself stronger.

The Onmyoji has divine spellcasting instead of psychic, and can add cleric spells to her list.

Hope this isn't too much info so soon after the book's been out... uh, if anyone asks, you got this from the Automatic Writing skill unlock, okay?

Protoman wrote:
Kinetic Leap grants a +10 (or +20 with 10 ranks in acrobatics) bonus) to acrobatics to jump and Air's Leap utility wild talent provides a bonus to jump equal to kineticist level and you jump twice as far as the results of the check indicates and accepting 1 burn can double that for a final 4 times as far as check indicates. Either one of these options, even more so with both, could get one jumping WAAAY more than one's speed allows in a move action. Would a kineticist take several rounds to finish the jump or is this a special case that it'll be done a lot faster as one move action or full-round action?

Unfortunately, as per PF rules, a jump cannot exceed your maximum movement for a round. So if a human uses a move action to jump, he can move 30ft maximum; if he uses a double move, it's 60ft. Personally I houserule that a jump longer than your speed spends move actions automatically until you land (I mean, hurtling through the air isn't super conducive to action economy), but that's me.

Protoman wrote:
I wanna make sure I'm getting Internal Buffer right. Let's say I'm fresh for the day with no burn and empty buffer, and I accept 1 burn but place it in the buffer. Is that 1 burn safely in the buffer and nowhere else or do I simultaneously have 1 burn giving me nonlethal damage and activating Elemental Overflow AND 1 burn in the buffer to be used later?

Yep, that's how I understand it. Good way to get EO bonuses while still saving up burn.

Alright, so can anyone tell me (Possibly with playtest experience) whether or not going Aether is a terrible idea? The utility talents look very fun, but I'm just not convinced about the composite blasts. +1 per d6 is honestly just terrible for 2 burn, and if you go full aether I'm not convinced that halved damage is worth it being force.

Jamie Charlan wrote:
It was literally called borderline-overpowered by stating it's better than a Warrior

Like I said, they were refuting a claim that the class was as useful as a warrior, not using the warriro as a balancing reference. Now, let's move this talk to the Kineticist Preview Thread !

Brandon Hodge wrote:
"move your stuff cadvin you idiot" [sic]

Sorry, wasn't thinking, anything else about the kineticist will be relegated strictly there!

On to more possessed pastures: I really hope the harrowed medium gets released at some point (I'd gladly pay money, hint hint). While the released medium looks mechanically fine it's a bit... disappointing to me. You're pretty flexible day to day sure, but each option just feela boring until very high levels. Four rather cookie-cutter abilities just isn't enough to spread over an entire class.

Also, am I reading something wrong or does the favored location mechanic make it practically impossible for a medium to channel a spirit outside of a big city?

Jamie Charlan wrote:

You did NOT just use a bloody Warrior as an excuse. I'm hallucinating. That's gotta be it. No one would use the warrior as a standard for class capability. This didn't happen. I didn't read that. It would never be written.

Good, because nobody did =P

The comment was referring to someone else saying that the kineticist's damage and utility was on par with a warrior using a bow.

Extra Anchovies wrote:
Wall costs 3 burn. That means it only becomes at-will at level 11.

8, actually, remember Gather Power. Though it's a moot point anyway since you can't get it before level 11.

Extra Anchovies wrote:
utility talents (which are not wild talents; "wild talents" are those that modify the blasts)

Nope, they're still wild talents, they're called "Utility Wild Talents" in the book. Infusion wild talents modify the blasts.

Extra Anchovies wrote:
And a same-leveled kineticist can deal 1d6+2 damage (assuming 18 Con).

That's assuming it's a touch attack, which would give it a leg up. To keep it as equal as possible it'd probably be an earth blast, which would do 1d6+5 P/B/S without any feats.

Extra Anchovies wrote:
None of this changes the fact that the Kineticist has inexcusably poor damage, which is what I complained about to begin with.

Just so I can get a feel for what you want, what sort of damage are you looking for? 12d6+12+CON (18d6+18+CON if I want to use 1 burn, which I can do 2/day for free) that entangles on a failed REF save at level 11 is pretty snazzy for me, but I don't play in really highly optimized games.

Protoman wrote:
Gordrenn Higgler wrote:
Does the kineticist get the same number of wild Talents?
From my understanding, the kineticist gets loads more. A utility wild talent on even levels and I think a substance wild talent on odd levels.

Judging by the iconic, that would seem to be correct. I believe they also get an extra talent if they select their element again using Expanded Element.

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Mark Seifter wrote:
You're not undead. You're more like one of the mythological and legendary figures that came back after dying as part of their tale, the most famous of which these days probably being from Christianity. You can continue to keep your body as long as you want, but if you overtax yourself, you risk slipping away for a while, leaving the body in a coma.

Ah, I was under the impression that it was 'kinda undead' like a dhampir. I was gonna be an Ancient Osirion pharaoh whose tomb was sabotaged, trapping his spirit and forcing him to possess his own mummified body.

As is I'll probably just go no-archetype Shabti that doesn't remember his trials in the afterlife, channeling his closest advisers, generals, and bodyguards. (Maybe they actually assassinated his previous not-self for being a terrible person, and cling to him and alter his memories out of guilt of the fate they accidentally consigned him to. Spooky!)

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Mark Seifter wrote:
Because honestly, getting a taboo from yourself seems silly. But on the other hand, you're possessing this body already, so none of those other possessors can have it; you called dibs, and they have to respect that.

Haha, I like that explanation.

"Shotgu- aww man, I never get to possess anyone!"

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Since I'm an unapologetic info leech, can anyone say what the Reanimated Medium gets for being, well, dead?

(But seriously, everyone's been doing a fantastic job answering questions, many thanks to all of you.)

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Hey Mark, speaking of early PDFs, Meligaster's boots got muddy and he says I get my copy now if I lick them clean. Is that true?

I mean, I'm gonna do it anyway because it honestly sounds like a good idea, but I just wanted your input.

MusicAddict wrote:

Every element gets a basic X-kinesis ability at first level, geokinetics get a scaling version of mage hand for earth/stone only and the ability to sift though earth.

Not bad, I was hoping to be able to shape rock a bit but earth sensing and movement definitely not bad for something free. Thanks for the answer!

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Luthorne wrote:

Well, constructs have immunity to necromancy effects, so presumably not constructs (not without greater possess object, anyways). For undead, I don't see anything preventing it...though they do usually have good Will saves.

Oh so they are, forgot about that. Wouldn't have made much sense anyway. As for undead, well, I suppose there is that archetype that posesses his own corpse...

While I'm here, can anyone sate my kinetic kuriosity? I've heard that the kineticist gets cantripy talents- do they get them for free? What does the geokineticist's do?

Luthorne wrote:

Well, not every caster...he gets it at the same level as the summoner.

I meant in the Occult Adventures book, not in all of Pathfinder. I mean, I'm also mad that the summoner got it, but that's only because I'm still bitter about 2nd level Haste.

I didn't know they were non mind-affecting Necromancy spells, that's a bit odd. Does that mean you can use it on undead and constructs?

QuidEst wrote:

Right, but the Mesmerist's deal is mind control, and possession tends to be more along the lines of… soul control? Something like that. I would have liked for it to get early access, but I can see where the classes that actually deal with spirits are a better fit for it. I'm withholding judgement until I see the full list. So long as they get Dominate Person as a 4th level spell, it'll be good enough for me.

Yeah, I suppose I can see it for Medium and Spiritulist, but the Occultist really should've gotten it at 5th if anyone did.

Ah well, at least the Mes got some nice things to do with his stare.

Luthorne wrote:
QuidEst wrote:

1. What level do Mesmerists get access to the Possession spell at?

5th level. Occultist and spiritulist get it at 4th, and medium gets it at 3rd. Psychic, sorcerer/wizard, summoner, and witch all get it at 5th.

I have to say I'm disappointed. The Mesmerist, whose entire thing is mind control, gets the spell three levels behind literally every other caster in the book. Even a 4th level caster gets it before him.

That really stings.

So, I heard from the playtest that the kineticist might be getting prestidigitation-like control over their element. Is this true? What sort of stuff can they do (Specifically earth, ah-hem ah-hem, no bias there)?

I'm glad to see these changes- I liked the Harrowed medium, but I definitely think it needs more time and more paper to work. Hopefully it actually makes it to its own book, I'd definitely pay for it.

I want to congratulate you on the Reanimated Medium, it has the sort of flavor that would make me want to play it even if it sucks mechanically. Depending on what it's like, it might be a perfect fit for the zombie apocalypse game my friend wants to run...

You definitely want to be making use of Gather Energy (Use a move action to reduce burn cost of your next blast by 1, 2 at level 11 if Mark's proposed changes go through, which is likely). With that you can do a composite blast every round for a move + standard. So that's probably around 12d6+12+CON+FtB, plus stuff like entangling from infusions. If you're willing to spend a point of burn you can empower it, dishing out 18d6+18+CON+FtB. It's not fantastic compared to a pouncing barbarian or something, but it's certainly not shabby.

Considering a duration wasn't included, I assume that it's meant to be permanent. And if it's permanent rather than instantaneous (As is likely, seeing as a telekinetic barrier isn't going to be around without magic, and water isn't going to stand at all) it's possible that the barrier is supported by magic, and could be free floating so long as it's not broken or dispelled.

On the subject of elemental defenses, I'm wondering if they shouldn't be coupled with Elemental Overflow/Feel the Burn. As it is, it's generally a terrible deal to invest burn in defenses, especially for earth (My favorite element has to be hit with a physical attack that doesn't bypass adamantine DR a number of times equal to their level to even break even with their investment!). Not a big deal though, since the defenses are awesome enough right out of the box, and Elemental Overflow already is giving stat boosts+damage boosts+maybe attack boosts (Not sure if that was replaced by the stat boosts, or merely augmented by it).

Verzen wrote:
What's the kinetic defense's (for fire) save? (DC)

Searing Flesh is considered a wild talent, so it would be 10 + effective spell level + CON. I'm not entirely certain what spell level kinetic defense is, but Expanded Defense seems to indicate that it's 4, in which case the DC is 14 + CON.

As a side note, I feel like Earth Climb needs just a little bit more. Maybe make it function like Spider Climb, or make all surfaces, no matter how smooth, have a base DC of 25/30. The mighty Geokineticist can toss boulders and see through rock, he shouldn't be thwarted by someone who decides to sand down a castle wall.

Mark Seifter wrote:
It's going to be equally loud and visibly impressive to that too! Which is perfect if you are looking for a Kamehameha attack, but maybe not as great for an assassin.

Bah, you uncultured brutes know nothing about real assassination. Step 1: Bury target under thousands of pounds of earth and stone. Step 2: Run like the wind and hope they blame it on someone else.

Works every time, except when it doesn't.

Mark Seifter wrote:

The two round ability may seem like its cutting down on your per-round damage, but you can generally do something pretty fantastic when you use it (and you get to snort in derision at things like DR and energy resistance that only apply once to your whole two round charged blast), and given positioning, buffs, and changing conditions of the battlefield, sometimes you couldn't have gotten a good shot the first time anyway. The trade-off is the danger of being disrupted by an enemy, but that can be a particularly good trade-off if you're a flying aerokineticist baiting enemies into using ranged attacks on you against your AC and miss chance when they might have otherwise left you alone and pincushioned the other characters.

And more importantly than the damage, you get to grunt and scream for a full 9 seconds before unleashing a massive beam of energy.

But seriously, I love the full-round chargeup, it's the thing that I most hope makes it to the final build. Absolutely perfect for any situation where you get the drop on enemies (I already want to make an Extreme Range + Gather Energy assassin).

Rynjin wrote:

The main benefit of Maximize is that it STACKS with Empower.

Combined with the teased ability to further reduce Burn costs as you level and it's fairly potent.

Oooh, that's very true, forgot to even consider that. I got a bit stuck in a rut of "What would I use in a round without spending burn". Composite + Maximize + Empower does truly nasty damage at any level, and you can do it with no burn (Albeit taking two rounds) as early as level 11.

See, this is why I voice these sort of things, I'm clearly too dumb to trust myself =P

With a little bit of math, I've discovered just what a bad deal Maximize spell/metakinesis is next to Empower. I mean, let's take a kineticist, level 17 (A 9 dice blast, giving Empower the disadvantage here due to the odd number).

Empower: 9 * 1.5 * 3.5 = 47 average damage.

Maximize: 9 * 6 = 54 damage.

That's a x2 increase on burn cost in exchange for a x1.15 increase on damage. And I thought Skyrim's x2.8 mana cost for x2.2 damage with dual casting was bad! It becomes even worse if the blast is physical, increasing damage by only 2 (+03% is not what I'm looking for in a metakinesis)!

The main advantage is that you don't have to roll all of those d6s.

Sphynx wrote:
The text actually states that the object HAS to weigh 5lbs per Kineticist level... I'm pretty sure though that it was suppose to be a max (not a precise weight). I think it was based on Light Touch, and then they changed Light Touch to be 5lbs every 2 levels... But that's just assumption. :P

It actually says "The object must weight 5 lbs. per kineticist level you possess or less." A crucial, but very small and easily missable addition.

To my knowledge (Helped by Jason's post on page 8):

1. It lets you choose two resonant powers in addition to the spells.

2/3. No. If you choose transmutation once, you get a single implement and one resonant power per day.

4. Yep. See above.

5. Its D&D there's no such thing as overthinking

So basically you're running it right as you are. If you've chosen transmutation once, you can buff a single item. If you choose it twice, you can buff up to two items.

Definitely not. Your hand would just slip out of theirs like a wet bar of soap. In fact, freedom of movement makes your entire body slick and frictionless, such that the best way of moving is by sliding around on your belly like a penguin.

Or maybe I just picked up a cursed ring. Could be it.

On a more serious note, I imagine that freedom of movement could be a liability if, say, you fall off of a cliff and someone grabs your arm. Would that be a grapple check?

It's pretty ambiguous whether psychic spells use costless material components or not. Nothing explicitly states that they don't, but the statement that spells retain focus components seems fairly out of place if they do.I think this should be clarified in the final document.

While on the subject, assuming that they still do use material components, I don't think they should. It fits the image of a psion being capable of doing great things with naught but his mind. It would also seem strange that a psychic spellcaster, naked but for an expensive wedding band, would be able to cast raise dead but not suggestion, simply because a large diamond is more costly than a honeycomb.

First off, I love the class. Someday I want to play a Nagaji mesmerist with the Hypnotic Gaze trait (it totally wouldn't be obvious that I was mind controlling anyone).

I agree that implanted tricks need to have a greater duration. As is I can't see myself using them much- they don't usually have enough utility to keep spending a standard action on in combat, and most combat (For my group at least) isn't just a bunch of mooks in the next room waiting to be attacked. 1 hour/level at least, preferably just until the mesmerist next refreshes spells.

Undead and other things immune to mind stuff are definitely a problem. It'd be nice for the mesmerist to not be completely useless for, say, carrion crown or something. Maybe package the current Psychic Inception into base Hypnotic Stare and change Psychic Inception to 100% effectiveness each round? Or at least let you take it twice, second time making them fully effective?

I'd also love to see an archetype that makes it a prepared caster (I'd do it prepared/spontaneous like arcanist, have them know all spells inherently like divine casters, and dock 2 spells known and 1 spell per day) but that's nothing wrong with the class, I just love day to day versatility.

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Oh come on, no bracelet abjuration implement? It's the obvious choice! Just make sure to pick up Energy Shield, you don't want to end up with a roasted hand...

I feel like Magic Circles comes far too late and has too little oomph to be useful. The minute long drawing time makes it pretty much worse than the spell version, and even medium casters get access to it a level earlier than you. Pushing it back a few levels and maybe giving it an upgrade at level 8 (To avoid the dead level) would make it much more appealing to me. Or a feat upgrade, at least. Binding Circles is great- situational, but really cool when it works.

All in all I really love the flavor of the class, but I don't want it to fall into the "Here's a useless ability to fill a dead level" trap.