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Dr. Calvin Murgunstrumm's page

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Using things like Otataral from Erikson's Malazan books to allow martials some effectiveness against casters and embuing fortresses or at least vaults with an anti-magic capability which is not magic itself can be an effective means of balancing casters.

Also, using tactics which account for them. OOTS is full of excellent battle scenes where casters are nullified by clever strategems, do the same in your world. Create encounters that expect casters, use wands of greater dispel, have casters rocking counterspells, throw in some SR for good measure.

Use dungeons that react to magic being cast in them, effectively nullifying certain spells, like a dungeon that shuffles its room locations whenever teleport is cast, or a dungeon that requires a key to navigate safely.

Create spells dedicated to undoing some magics. Create feats to give martials nice things. Drop magic items selectively and close the magic item stores forever: make it craft, find or recieve as a gift or reward. GP is for mundane things. Also, tack on quests to craft items and minimize downtime: this keeps casters from going craft crazy.

Give martials some in world benefits: a mage guild or a temple can provide spells and components for casters, a knightly order or a theives guild can provide influence outside of the rulebooks: allies who will side with the fighters and rogues as non feat cohorts for certain quests, will provide fantastical animals for mounts or allow for social achievements that would be harder to accomplish via spells. These things give martials agency without rewriting their classes.

As for silmulacrum, give the genies, etc. wishes, but just go wishmaster on the PCs if they abuse it: the genie's essence is false so the wish is corrupted, the genie's body was empty so the soul of an ancient, powerful, and evil genie has filled the void, twisting the wishes until it is free of its new master, etc. etc.

None of this violates the RAW, in fact they become adventure platforms, and adventuring is what the game is about.

And Rule 0 is RAW, whether DM fiat or not. As long as everybody's having fun, then Rule 0 is tops.

Key note though, which will likely be ignored in rebuttals, but I'll put it in anyway:

Moderation is key here. Every dungeon with Otataral, only cool guilds for monks and rogues, every encounter rocking counterspells, this becomes tedious and punishes casters. If your casters are sharing the reality bending goodness for all, don't hit them with the nerf bat. Only the selfish, "stand back guys, me and my 50 summons and my eidolon have got all the encounters, always" types need that bat a lot. The rest of the time these balances should be fun challenges which deserve rewards for overcoming and out thinking.

And clever spell casting, within RAI, shouldn't be discouraged just because it bypasses something you had planned: don't punish players for out smarting you. That's a good thing when they do. Reward it.

dot for later exploitation. Silly PCs >:)

For the rogues you could develop a guild specific ranking using a theives' cant style code.

An initiate might be a finger, a member a hand, an elder an arm, the master the head, etc.

Or a stem, a leaf, a petal, a thorn and the rose.

Or a penny, a dime, a dollar, a diamond, the bank.

The list could go on.

As for the church, you could use familial titles: daughter/son, brother/sister, father/mother, grand father/mother or father/mother superior, patriarch/matriarch.

Or go catholic with deacon, priest, monsignoir, arch deacon, bishop, arch bishop, cardinal, pope.

Another hot tip is to get your mount up to INT 3 and focus on the overrun and trample feat trees for it, allowing you to make charges that deal damage with little to no hassle with the horse. Getting a caster to get you some freedom of movement buffs would be a worthy move as well.

For yourself, if you go mounted, the vital strike tree is a helpful damage booster, especially once you get the feat that adds +2 damage per vital strike die, which IS multiplied by charge and critical factors. It's a +18 damage on a regular hit at the end of the tree, but is even an impressive +6 for the first one.

BlkRosePhoenix wrote:
Dr. Calvin Murgunstrumm wrote:
Falcatas do more DPR unless you have a critical burst weapon, but even then it's a toss up. Falcata's are the bomb, though the THF with a large one is better than TWF.

THF with a large one? what does that mean?

Two handed fighting with a large falcata gives you an extra damage dice, coupled with the best crit range. You can also go with a dip into barb for jotun grip and TWF with two of them for insane to hit penalties. But there is a certain glamour to having two large falcatas in either hand.

Elven curved blades and kukris are also worth investigating.

Falcatas do more DPR unless you have a critical burst weapon, but even then it's a toss up. Falcata's are the bomb, though the THF with a large one is better than TWF.

So, we have a DC 19 suit of fullplate with a masterwork component.

Cost of adamantine fullplate: 16350 DC 19 + 10 for rushing
Cost of Masterwork: 150 DC: 20 + 10 for rushing

Our Lv 10 expert has

10 ranks
3 class skill
6 skill focus
2 from Master Craftsman (armorsmithing)
2 from masterwork tools
10 for having a forge and working in it
2 for an apprentice, but RAW you can have as many of these as you'd like
2 and double production speed for a skilled helper with Cooperative crafting
2 from Intelligence of 14
5 from heart of the fields

and a 5% discount from eldritch smith.

So +44 +10= 54*2*29 or 30 with only one apprentice.

Masterwork is 1425 sp and adamantine fullplate is 155325

Fullplate: 155325/3132= 49.6 weeks
Masterwork: 1425/3240= .5 weeks

So 50 weeks with one apprentice.

Make that 10 apprentices and it's 44 weeks.

Is that really that long of a wait for the best non magical armour in the game?

MrSin wrote:
Dr. Calvin Murgunstrumm wrote:
Also, why can't you file the serial numbers off a samurai? Grey Maiden Samurai sound perfectly suitable.

Probably would be, depending on what you were going for. Not if you want the tactician ability however, which is what was used in the example. Samurai trades out all of the charge abilities and for resolve and tactician for weapon expertise. Probably wouldn't be an awful house rule to change weapon expertise to any weapon, but by RAW you can't even give it to other eastern weapons like the Nodachi, nor western weapons if your playing a character who isn't from a place with katanas.

Samurai aren't cavalier in every respect.

Well, no, he said he should have given them teamwork feats, but felt that they were "too weak".

It sounds like he ignored two of the fundamental class features, the mount and teamwork feats, to give the order of the lion challenge bonuses.

This is poor NPC design, not an argument against cavaliers.

The katana thing is circumstantial, as this was a homebrew conversion anyhow. There's no reason to say katanas don't exist in crimson throne other than GM fiat. But then again, you can houserule different weapons, as you suggested.

His example smacks of poor NPC design to me.

So drop a few skeletons that the drake has killed with gear in their path to give them level appropriate gear, if you want to be nice to them.

Otherwise let them figure out how to trap this thing and let the dice fall where they may.

So they are right at the fight, are level appropriate, just without the buffs?

Let the fight happen, perhaps granting them an escape route that allows the sole survivors to drag the corpses out and back to town for some ressurection action.

Or nerf the monster.

Why not just implement the same thinking behind TWF into full attacks then?

Comabats shouldn't be going much longer than 4 or 5 rounds unless you have a gaggle of foes on the field, so unless you give your monster's crazy ACs and double hp, the war of attrition should be over quite quickly.

The idea of stunts is fun, but I don't see how that's connected to getting rid of iterative attacks.

Well, nerf your dungeon if it's CR is too high.

Lower your drake's hp, ac and BAB.

Lower the dcs of traps and obstacles.

Give them the corpses of other adventurers with some consumable loot that would buff them for just that fight.

Throw some weaklings at them to grind them up a level or two.

Have a puzzle that grants a gratutious amount of story xp that levels them up.

Do these help?

My advice is don't: Martials are nerfed enough as is, why are you taking away 1-3 extra attacks which can equate to 2-4 times more damage?

Also, what do you intend to do to TWF builds? Do they not get an extra weapon attack?

Revan wrote:

When I GMed Curse of the Crimson Throne and converted to Pathfinder, I remade the Gray Maidens as Cavaliers instead of Fighters, because Order of the Lion was incredibly appropriate for them. It also made them vastly weaker, because they were giving up feats for mounted abilities they would never be able to use. Challenge proved a weak boost to their power--the AC penalty made them die faster. The most interesting thing to do would have been to give every Maiden in a group a separate teamwork feat to share with the group, but most teamwork feats, especially the entry level ones available to low-level cavaliers, are terrible.

Samurai, with its emphasis on persistence and resistance, would actually be a much better class for them mechanically if the serial numbers could be filed off.

Did you give them their mounts? Or did you nerf the class feature that provides meatshields, mobility, higher ground bonuses, action economy and potential flanking bonuses?

Because if they didn't have their mounts, and if you didn't synergize their teamwork feats, no wonder they were worse than fighters. Giving them shield wall alone would help to negate those AC penalties you refer to.

Also, why can't you file the serial numbers off a samurai? Grey Maiden Samurai sound perfectly suitable.

Leonardo Trancoso wrote:
Which the highest damage a character can do in 1 round? Which class?

Without summons or buffs, a half elf summoner and his eidolon can rock upwards of ~2800 DPR with guns and multiweapon fighting. If you throw out WBL, this can skyrocket to ~4000 or more.

With summons in play and no WBL, the DPR for this class is close to ~6000, but this is a real corner case.

For a martial, ~400 is a pretty respectable DPR for level 20.

MrSin wrote:
Two weapon fighting, Sword and Board, two handed fighting, maneuver master, Unarmed/styles, Archery, reach, Crossbow archery. There are quiet a few combat styles, but most martials tend to go with two handed. I always liked the cool tricks you could do with some of the other builds, but straight damage tends to fall on two handed and power attack. Most of the styles have their own issues of course, and the cavaliers static modifiers come from charging and particularly with a lance and mounted.

There a multitude of archetypes that do away with the charge bonuses in favour of pack animals, range damage or party buffs. 5 at least. And the cav has as many combat feats as a barbarian, if not more with the gendarme, so he can build those trees as well as they can. Plus they get a pet.

MrSin wrote:

I know they can do other things, but their class isn't really built around them with the exception of a few orders and archetypes(though the nilla' class definitely has its focus.)

I would like it if it was more of a beast master gig, but the class itself is restricted to a horse and even houndsmaster is restricted to particular pets(bird/dog). As a mounted cavalier your really stuck with a horse. As a beastrider you do lose access to quiet a few archetypes(though not all of them important.) Gendarme itself is built to be a mounted terror in its own text, and its bonus feats have a focus on mounted combat.

My main beef with the class is definitely that it feels restrictive. A few of these archetypes feel like they give me something I should've had in the first place, in particular beast rider. If they'd build orders more like rage powers or mysteries with lots of choice and without mandates I might like it more.

Gendarme may be described as a mounted terror, but many of the feats are actually better suited for a mobile combat manuever specialist.

I am in agreement that the cavalier deserves a better companion list, but RAW allows GM fiat in the suitable companions choice. When I DM, I let a lot fly, pun fully intended, when the cav picks his companion. I think it's silly that a druid can be an eagle knight but not a cavalier.

MrSin wrote:
R_Chance wrote:
The class was "pigeonholed" for a reason, noted above. It's like saying the Wizard was "pigeonholed" because they can only cast arcane spells. It's what they do.

Most martials however aren't "pigeonholed" into a particular fighting style, and casting is a very wide variety of things. Even summoner's do more than summon things and alchemist do more than alchemy. No one is saying they want the cavalier to learn to throw fireballs and fly, more so just have more options beyond charging on mount I think.

Sword saint is actually pretty underwhelming in my experience. Iajutsu sounds cool, but it just doesn't work out in my experience. Its also an archetype of an archetype, and very far off from a cavalier.

Luring cavaliers are mounted archers, beast riders and huntmasters can focus on teamwork melee or an archer/meatshield tandem, sword saints are melee focused and the gendarme beastmaster has enough feats to be a combat manuever specialist.

Which fighting styles are you missing out on here?

Not trying to tell you what to think, but it seems like you've decided that cavaliers are only good at charging. You're ignoring, or at least are disregarding because perhaps you feel they are too weak, the many archetypes that have been provided to make a heavy fighter with a pet in contrast to the ranger/druid. I'm sorry if you feel I'm putting words in your mouth, but this is the impression you are giving me.

A cavalier charge build is a thing of beauty, but having a pet and party buffs opens up a variety of tactical options beyond that that can make the cav an effective controller, even if you are forced to be a member of a knightly order or are forced to take the knight errant package.

MrSin wrote:

Here's the thing though, why do I have to choose between the options given to me? Wouldn't it have been easier just not to attach the roleplaying mandates to the orders, so that I could be whatever I wanted. Sure, there are 16+3rd party + Homebrew. However, if you had suggestions then I could be anything. I'd have all of those options and more, and mix and match. If I become a beast totem barbarian I'm not told "This is how a beast totem barbarian acts!" If I play a witch I'm not told "This is how a witch who takes this hex or patron acts!" and so on. I have all of the options, and I'm not limited.

Well, your barbarian can't be lawful, which is far more restrictive to roleplaying than the edicts of the orders if your DM has set views about alignment. And your witch's patron might be just as fickle as the order edicts should our DM enjoy using class features to nerf a character.

Again, this is a complaint against pathfinder, even if you don't want to admit it. Some classes are looser with roleplaying restrictions, others are tighter. Your argument against my dazzling duelist blows up your arguments against the cavalier:

I want to play a fighter/mage who focuses on enchantments WITH the magus. But I can't, so the magus clearly is too restrictive, attaching mechanics to roleplaying...

And the complaint that 16+ choices isn't enough freedom is really weak when you also have druids, rangers, paladins, summoners and fighters who can all be mounted warriors too, with or without a corner case code that impacts perhaps 10% of the characters actual abilities.

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MrSin wrote:

Order of the dragon is not what I'm looking for if I want to hold the lines, he's who I want if I want someone to assist constantly(Which oddly enough, isn't always the best action to assist.)

Again, rule 0 is not the best defense. If it was I could say I don't like the cavalier because he can ride a flying pink pony in my home game, or that he's awesome because his alicorn kicks butt and my custom Order of the Black Saint is just what I needed.

Rule 0 has always been a last resort in all of my arguments. There are a multitude of orders to choose from. 16 paizo orders, including the ronin/knight errant which eliminates all the roleplaying shackles you so dislike. Would you complain if the ronin package was the only thing attached to the challenge? Or would you just complain that the challenge was too vanilla and lacked variety?

You have 16 options of orders to choose from, and there's a super genius book that has a whole host of other options, as well as other 3rd party stuff. If you really can't build your niche build after that, you're probably being picky. I'm sorry they only have peanut butter and chocolate but not peanut butter and fudge. At this point, rule 0 your peanut butter and fudge. To tell me it's a weak argument ignores the things that came before it.

MrSin wrote:
Right, because magus has this edict system that tells me... oh wait, no it doesn't. Codes, tenants, alignment restrictions... Didn't I just talk about these and how they have their own critisims?

Have fun playing your enchanting duelist who uses her dazzling beauty to charm foes and turn them against each othe... oh wait, I don't get charm spells. I suppose I'll fall back on my planeswalker general build, where my character summons allies from across the planes to help him wage war.... oh, no summon spells either.

Darn, guess I'm stuck playing a blaster gish. Tell me again how class doesn't limit your roleplaying options?

MrSin wrote:
Dr. Calvin Murgunstrumm wrote:
the ronin, which is a build your own order RAW,
He has a build your own edict(why does need one?), but his mechanics are set in stone if we're talking about RAW.

So are the fighters, but you aren't complaining that they have to be weapons masters. If the challenge mechanic was simply: you must follow an edict determined by you and the DM and at certain levels you gain the benefits of the ronin order, with no other orders, would you still be complaining? Because there's no forced roleplaying here, just limited mechanics, which are a whole other complaint.

MrSin wrote:
I don't have the space, nor time to go through every last class and explain how it affects its roleplaying, but I should note there is a huge difference between playing a summoner and saying my background involves figuring that out somehow, and having a restriction on my power and losing it all if I stop acting a certain way that doesn't have to do with the order abilities! Worse, for some reason I forget how to do attack non lethally with the flat of my blade, if I for some reason kill a man who surrendered.

Losing it all? You lose your mount, teamwork feats, banner bonuses, full bab and charge bonuses? And you lose it for one day because your evil knight was a jerk to a peasant. A good night's sleep and you're holding the line with the best of them. How often do you run into peasants that you choose to neglect or attack in your games?

And you don't forget how to knock a guy out, you simply suffer minuses like the rest of the plebes. Call it a wavering of resolve, call it your supernatural focus slipping, call it your patron god of your order abandoning you for your sins. Easy to fluff the mechanic. But I suspect you've got a thing against powers per day perhaps?

MrSin wrote:
What you call mild... Is relative. Its a thread about personal opinion. It shouldn't be an argument when someone says "I don't like orders because it is a constraint on my roleplay". I feel like I can make my own characters, with their own personalities, and who act in their own way and use the mechanics given to help bring that idea to life. When I have alignment restrictions, edicts, codes, in the way of a character idea it can become a problem. More so when many GMs I know aren't interested in allowing people to be a little different. It's a completely legitimate criticism of the way orders are designed.

But, again, this criticism is a criticism of Monks, Barbarians, Clerics, Wizards, Sorcerors, Summoners, Paladins, Druids, Cavaliers, Oracles, Inquisitors, Anti-paladins and Witches, to varying degrees. The game forces mechanical choices upon you dependant on roleplaying choices. I'm sorry you dislike this, but it's been part of the game since 1975. This isn't the cavalier's fault, it's the game's fault. Here is really where you need to Rule 0 that stuff out of your game, or play a different game. If 16+ orders doesn't allow you to be different, you probably need to tune the mechanics to suit your tastes. But don't claim that there is no variety or that roleplaying choices are being jammed down your throat.

MrSin wrote:
Pointed more toward mechanics, I dislike package deals you can't break out of. Orders happen to be that, you take the whole gig and you have to live with it. Mysteries you can choose revelations, or rage powers you get a very wide selection, but not so much with orders. They don't make the class feel more flavorful for me, more so just locked into a particular style of play "Hi, I'm a cavalier. I'm automatically part of an order of knights... Oh! And if I stop, I lose a good chunk of my abilities." I don't like that. Not only is he built for charging on a horse, but he's also always part of a knightly order or an errant, and errants are a specific order with specific mechanics unrelated to a be your own kinda' guy.

A cavalier IS a knight. That's what the class is about. That's where the powers come from. If you don't like it, rule 0 the class, or be a druid or a ranger if you want to be a beast rider without an order, be a dragoon fighter or barbarian if you want to be a mounted powerhouse without the ever-so restrictive orders. Or be a paladin or anti-paladin, where at least it doesn't tease you with the illusion of 16 choices and you become a mounted crusader.

Best yet, you can just dip 4 levels of cav and have that mount be as good as a full cav for the cost of one feat and not have to worry about the challenge except as a slightly helpful boost to your fighter/barb/ranger/whatever once a day. Losing it for breaking the edict becomes a tame penalty.

There are options, and full credit if you don't like playing a knight but you want the shiny powers that come with it, but the cav has non-charge builds, can keep up with a fighter with the gendarme archetype, even without going charge focus, has choices that allow you to not play a horsie-man, provides options that don't force you to roleplay a certain way to gain some benefit from the challenge (and quite good ones too, IMHO) and the class covers a broad range of historical and literary archetypes.

I'm sorry you don't like them, but for anyone on the fence, I feel your arguments are about taste or flaws in pathfinder versus the class itself.

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MrSin wrote:

SOL In PFS? Why is that? Anyways, my point was that its best to have suggestions for RP values, rather than enforce them. That said, Evil cavalier who cares about his teammates might want order of the shield but not care that much about the weak. Or for a closer to real life example a chevalier who doesn't care about the people, but does a fine job as a knight holding the lines. Order of the shield is about protecting the common folk! But as it just so happens, not everyone's into that gig, but plenty of people could be all about holding the lines and being resolute.

I don't disagree, but the order of the dragon will do a lot of what you're looking for then... Which is kind of my point. Unless you are obsessed with a mechanic and it doesn't fit your corner case build and your GM isn't flexible, the cav has a myriad of other options that probably could, if you're willing to sacrifice a little mechanically. Just like an evil cleric cannot channel healing and a good cleric cannot heal the unliving easily.

MrSin wrote:

I am not a picky eater, I like trying new things and lots of flavors. I however do not like being told what my dish is, and what I am eating tonight. I can ask for a suggestion, but please do not pick out my menu and tell me that I wanted the chicken when I wanted the beef. Though I'm not one to go to a Mexican restaurant and expect Spaghetti, I do expect my choice between Taco's and Burrito's.(Supposing we're using the food metaphor, and an attempt to keep the food simple.)

Rule 0 is not a great defense for a problem someone might have. The best core is open and flexible, but with many suggestions and further ideas through books and setting specific stuck in setting...

Well, they may not have a ground beef burrito, but they do have bean, chicken, pork and steak burritos, and a ground beef taco, enchilada and taquito.

Seriously, with the samurai on top, the cav has so many flavours, three which are horse free, and all of which have lots of orders to pick from, plus the ronin, which is a build your own order RAW, that I find it hard to imagine anyone who actually likes the class having trouble fitting the roleplaying to the mechanics.

Your argument sounds like an argument against classes, because all classes are going to force you into a roleplaying niche with their mechanics, because that's what they do.

I'm not trying to paint you as immature. I understand that there are systems that offer more in class flexibility, and even classes like the fighter and the rogue offer more roleplaying options than the cavalier.

But I do think that having very mild restrictions attached to the orders isn't that oppressive and is unlikely to constrain your roleplaying.

I use words like shackle and frustrated because you sound passionately opposed to the notion of mechanics being attacked to roleplaying. However, I think it's only fair to acknowledge that this is a feature of the game:

Monks, Barbarians, Clerics, Wizards, Sorcerors, Summoners, Paladins, Druids, Cavaliers, Oracles, Inquisitors, Anti-paladins and Witches all have mechanics that are linked to roleplaying and if you'd like, I can provide corner cases for all of them that the RAW doesn't allow me to roleplay. Singling out the cavalier for this crime, even though it's one of the more flexible classes in this respect, is narrow sighted.

MrSin wrote:
Dr. Calvin Murgunstrumm wrote:
Thanks for ignoring all the examples I provided to support my claim. A war domain cleric isn't going to be a pacifist or else they can expect to lose their cleric powers and a druid won't be clear cutting forests with their druid powers for very long either.

The claims that had nothing to do with what I said. I specifically said that it was about mechanics, and you go on about role play.

If you took war domain your god is likely one of war and expects you to war. Its not attached to the domain, its attached to the ideal or deity. If on the off chance your deity has nothing about war, but you took the war domain, you don't have to be all about war. Though that's a weird situation. Deities in the game are given a collection of domains, and every once in a while there's a weird one. Some are related to background and have nothing to do with the deities tenants. Also, non lawful and following tenants is actually pretty broad because its not static. Orders are static.

Dr. Calvin Murgunstrumm wrote:
These things are ENTIRELY tied into roleplaying, as is the paladin's LG edict, the barbarians non-lawful edict, etc. I'd love to see an example of roleplaying that the cavalier is denied because of his mechanics.

Those are not edicts. They have other names. Alignment restrictions is are whole different problem, and the code itself has a lot of flak.

A good example? How about if I just disagree with the bonuses they give? How about if I want one order's particular abilities because I think that better helps my concept, but that order is about something entirely different and my GM is urging me to do the order that gives me nothing I want but is all about my concept. When you disagree with what the author decided for you, then your always in trouble. This is why I don't like these things being a big package deal, I don't always agree, and if you give people freedom to choose everyone wins.

Dr. Calvin Murgunstrumm wrote:
Are the edicts

So let's actually describe this objection: you want the bonuses of the order of the shield, but hate the notion of defending the weak... I *guess* you're sol in PFS, but how often does the defense of the weak come up in your games? And why is that so antitheitical to the guy who gets a bunch of powers dedicated to keeping bad guys from the squishy guys?

Seems like a real corner case to me.

As for the Ronin, if ALL of the other options, you know, the 10+ of them, are no good, that's still there as a last resort.

So unless you're the pickiest eater that class system RPG's have ever seen, you should be able to fulfill your build, and if not, go ronin, which is in no way a mechanical trap. And if you're still dissatisfied, then maybe rule 0 is called for.

The fact that the order has mechanical and roleplaying elements in it may frustrate you, but there are, as pointed out, a host of examples of how this is actually just a feature of pathfinder. Rogue, Fighter, the rest are alignment and roleplaying bound to mechanics.

The pacifist cleric with the war domain is gonna have their god get pissed in most games, as is the goblin baby killing paladin. Hope for a lenient GM or play GURPs if you really can't stand accepting rewards while getting the order of the cockatrice's benefits.

MrSin wrote:
Dr. Calvin Murgunstrumm wrote:
4) The "orders restrict my roleplaying" is silly. They inform it. The comments regarding choosing a domain, choosing a school or even choosing a rage totem are spot on.
The comments were that orders affected your class features as much as domains and schools, which is independent of role play. Also wrong, unless domains affect every spell you cast like order's change your challenge every time you challenge.

Thanks for ignoring all the examples I provided to support my claim. A war domain cleric isn't going to be a pacifist or else they can expect to lose their cleric powers and a druid won't be clear cutting forests with their druid powers for very long either.

These things are ENTIRELY tied into roleplaying, as is the paladin's LG edict, the barbarians non-lawful edict, etc. I'd love to see an example of roleplaying that the cavalier is denied because of his mechanics.

Also, I don't see the order impacting your choice of mounts, feats, BAB, etc. the way alignment impacts your choice of familiar, channeling energy abilities, smite powers, or summoned monsters.

There are lots of mechanics with roleplaying edicts built into the. Cavaliers happen to be more, uh, cavalier about them than many other classes.

MrSin wrote:
Dr. Calvin Murgunstrumm wrote:
What order forces you to "roleplay a certain way? They're just mechanics with a flavour, and even RAW that flavour doesn't force you to do anything, it just defines the roleplaying elements of the order.
All of them? They are mechanics with enforced flavor. If you don't follow the edict you lose your order and the bonuses you got from it.

Are the edicts really shackling you that much? Paladins and Clerics and Druids are in an equally terrible boat. Except the Cavalier gets a myriad of orders to choose from, so if you don't like that edict you can choose a different order.

Again, I'd love to hear a situation where your edict crippled your character in such a fashion that you lost all your powers, you know, like how DMs pick on paladins, or even druids.

Fighters and rogues are pretty much the only class that don't force you to attach roleplaying to your mechanics.

And for those who hate this, I submit the Ronin order.

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A few things:

1) The samurai is a cavalier, for all intents and purposes. And the Huntmaster, Beastrider and Sword Saint all do away with the "Only Ponies!" stuff that seems to rankle people. I'd expect more down the line too.

2) The cavalier easily out does the fighter. The charge builds laugh at iterative attack DPRs, skill points and challenges are lovely swag and the mount is powerhouse icing on the cake.

Especially at level 1, when that free horse makes your action economy and gold economy FAR stronger than your average martial.

3) The mounts are useless in dungeons argument is a little bunk. Yes, sometimes you can't take your charger up the 50 ft wall, before you get fly or levitate spells, but even with that nerf you have a full bab challenge/buff tank/face who is slightly weaker than a fighter. This isn't a weak character without the mount. With it, action economy wins the day 90% of the time.

4) The "orders restrict my roleplaying" is silly. They inform it. The comments regarding choosing a domain, choosing a school or even choosing a rage totem are spot on.

You can play an order of the cockatrice as shy, dull and boring, but when he hits the battlefield, watch out. In fact, how many sports stars could be described in this fashion? Jonathan Toews of the Blackhawks springs to mind for me immediately.

What order forces you to "roleplay a certain way? They're just mechanics with a flavour, and even RAW that flavour doesn't force you to do anything, it just defines the roleplaying elements of the order. The cockatrice cavs will generally be flashier, the swords more martial, the star more pious, etc.

But you can be a cocky member of the star, a pious member of the dragon or a cooperative member of the cockatrice, just like you can be a druid who is scared of snakes, a barbarian who loves court dinners or a paladin who gambles. All without Rule 0 too.

You can dislike the class, just like you can dislike clerics because of the religion thing, wizards for the casting arcane spells thing or druids for the nature thing.

But there's no real gripe with the cav I can see beyond preference. They are mechanically potent, offer a variety of flavours within the confines of "mounted warrior with a code" archetype and the mount isn't really the anchor people make it out to be. Even without the mount, the other features are potent and there are tricks around the size problems too.

Buri wrote:
Dr. Calvin Murgunstrumm wrote:

Haha. Sorry, should have said ~2800 without magic. Haven't run the stats for it with magic or summons yet. With summons, that number should be more disgusting.

Question: How many rounds does it take to get that 3k damage at level 9? That might be the balancing factor.

11 rounds I believe. Far more than most fights last and it's not on a single target. Though, if I were switching things up and summoning ranged creatures as well it could probably all be concentrated. Around level 17, I believe, with the Quicken Spell-like Ability feat you can do it in half the time.

That makes sense, though 11 rounds of prep time gets into corner case territory, as you said, not many fights should last that long.

Are you lance pouncing with your eidolon or abusing it's arms, or is this based around it not being summoned and spamming summon monster? Also curious if it's a 1/day nova or if it's sustainable.

Buri wrote:
Dr. Calvin Murgunstrumm wrote:

I can drop a ~2800 DPR build on a level 20 summoner. That's disgusting and broken. Because of arms and guns.

Fix the arms, all will be well.

That it? My master summoner, at level 9, just summoning all hound archons can do ~3,225 DPR total. Granted, that's not on my character itself but it demonstrates the point.

There are other things that can potentially be fixed. Not trying to be all one-uppy on you. Just illustrating a point.

Haha. Sorry, should have said ~2800 without magic. Haven't run the stats for it with magic or summons yet. With summons, that number should be more disgusting.

Question: How many rounds does it take to get that 3k damage at level 9? That might be the balancing factor.

Tarantula wrote:
carn wrote:

Why do you people end up with x4 on a spirited supreme lance charge instead of x5?

Normally a x3 (spirited charge) and x3 (supreme charge) make it a x5.

I think that when the abilities state: "deals double the normal amount of damage (or triple if using a lance)" is reiterating that you get to do 2x damage with a weapon, or 3x with a lance. (The normal would be 1x with a weapon, or 2x with a lance). It is doubling the damage, and conveniently providing the doubled lance damage (as 3x) for you, so you don't mess up the multiple multipliers rule.


When you are dealing with multipliers, always subtract one, then do the addition and then multiply. So:

Normal attack= 1
Charging with lance: x2-1= 1
Spirited charge: x2-1= 1
Supreme charge: x2-1= 1
Critical hit with a lance: x3-1 =2


A critical spirited/supreme charge critical does x6.

The lance bonus does not stack twice.

Mergy wrote:
I'm just saying it's not clear. If it's not clear, expect table variance from GM to GM. If a character can't use Vital Strike when charging, I find it hard to believe that a character is meant to be able to Vital Strike just because his mount is the one making the charge action.

It's very clear. Your mount charges, you retain your full action economy, but are denied a full melee attack action. You can full attack with a ranged weapon, cast a full round spell, use a move action AND a standard action.

A standard action like attack (melee). That action happens to gain the benefits of a charge. But it's still just a standard action. And that standard action permits using vital strike.

Your DM may say no, but they either don't understand the rules or want to nerf melee fighters, which is silly.

The issue of magical crime is an issue of DM fiat. If your DM hates compulsion spells as a cheap way to bypass combat, then expect a hard rain to fall when you use them. If your DM thinks they are fun and a clever social tool, expect a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

I agree with the notion that the spell must be concealed and used in conjunction with social skills, but as I outlined, I see a variety of scenarios where it can be useful and fun without inspiring an arrest or a future enemy.

The analogy to paladins is quite apt: Some GMs are easy on enchanters, letting things slide, others have a very harsh view of what enchantments are and will not hesitate to put you on the wrong end of rule 0.

paizo.com wrote:
You can make a full attack with a ranged weapon while your mount is moving. Likewise, you can take move actions normally.

Thanks for playing. Your mount moves and uses its move action. You still get yours. Which means you get your standard action too.

Like: Attack (melee)

Which applies the charging bonuses from your mount using it's FULL round action to charge.

Meanwhile I use my move action to issue a challenge, then I use my standard action to drop some lance/spirited charge/challenge/vital strike pain down on my enemies.

Do whatever you want at your table, but it's taking nice things from martials that are totally legal.

You might also take note that mounted archers get FULL attacks while poor lancers do not. If you're nerfing vital strike, I'd get that one too before one of your players reads the mounted combat rules.

Wow. This is some bad rules lawyering.

An enhancement bonus CANNOT stack with an enhancement bonus.

The PC has one bonus, the weapon the other. Pick the one you want.

When you use the weapon, you use it's bonus. Your attack roll, not the weapon's.

Were you to two weapon fight, you could use a +5 sword in one hand and a regular one getting +4 from the spell in the other. Your attacks would be +5 and +4. Not +9 and +4.

Enhancement bonuses do not stack, even if they come from different sources.

The shield and armour enhancements are exempted specifically in the rules. The fact that they are specifically mentioned is an argument against the enhancement bonuses stacking, not for it, because were it allowed, it wouldn't need to be mentioned.

Just because you'd like it to be so does not make it so. Bonuses of the same type do not stack on the same roll, unless specifically exempted.

Mergy wrote:
You can't charge and vital strike with the same action, so the question is moot.

When you charge on a mount, you aren't charging, your mount is. Your attack gains the benefits of a charge, but is only a standard action. You still have your move action on top of that. So vital strike is a perfectly viable mounted warrior build. You just can't multiply it's damage with the lance or spirited charge or supreme charge.

Because a lot of what you're describing is a GM fiat thing.

Some GMs hate magic item shops, so even if the rulebooks allow for 25000gp worth of magic items to be had, the GM doesn't have to make a single one a longsword, should he decide that noone uses longswords in the city of scimitars.

Some GMs will tailor loot for players, others will let the dice decide, others will build their NPCs with whatever gear seems cool. The fighter who decided to play with longswords has to live with what his GM drops. Same goes for the longbow ranger, the illusionist wizard and the wild shaping druid.

The 50% really just defines the crafting cost versus markup and overhead. In theory you could run a magic item business and sell them at full cost, but sales versus inventory mechanics would be required, and this is an adventuring sim, not an economics sim.

This is like a player reading a spell wrong and getting killed, like with black tentacles.

"My spells shouldn't hurt ME!"


You're in the right. Give him some gold to offset the loss and you should be fine. If he's being pissy about not getting the item, well that's how the rules work. Let him do the checks himself next time.

Examples where, if used subtly, charm person can avoid ramifications:

The earlier example with the noblemen: Should there be a case where there are 3 "swing voters" on a council of 10 that could put you over the top, charming them to vote on your side would likely have no consequences. You've gained a benefit, or solved a social challenge with magic instead of skills, but there's no solid reason for the nobles to hold you in emnity.

Merchants have been mentioned: Perhaps you can convince a merchant for a line of credit or to become an investor in your adventuring company, granting you a horse/boat/wagon/other fairly expensive item for free to begin the adventure, only to repay him, return the goods and possibly a return on his investment after you are flush with treasure. Again, it becomes smart business after the fact, but you've gained a benefit in the short term, which is what matters in a metagaming sense (i.e. you know your character will be a millionaire by the time this is done, so short term loans are 0 risk)

Breaking the ice with a contact. If they start friendly, then staying friendly is a lot easier. Perhaps the captain of the guard hates gnomes and is hostile to them. Charm, a night of drinking together, one of the best nights of his life, suddenly this gnome doesn't seem so bad. You're use of diplomacy post charm has turned an antagonistic NPC into a friendly one who might come in handy later when the king's vizier throws you in the dungeon for a crime you are innocent of. The Lawful Guard Captain is likely to believe you are innocent, because you are actual friends now, no spell involved, and perhaps favour justice over the code of law and let you out so you can prove it. You haven't done anything except soften a racists prejudice and made a friend with the spell, but that can pay dividends.

Pushing encounters with neutrals into good encounters. You are hunting a criminal who fled town into the mystic forest and meet a band of savage fey hunters in the woods. You are trespassing in their territory. A simple charm spell and some social skills and they believe your story and are sympathetic to your cause. You can now gain valuable information, gain a potential guide or set of npc allies against the criminal who is the BBEG.

And, as above stated, the OG use of charm in the dungeon crawl: big dumb brute becomes your ally, potentially even beyond the use of the spell. Think Raistlin and Bupu even. With a little kindness and treating the charmed NPC as a friend, Crush the ogre might want to join your band of adventurers, because he truly believes that you are his real friends, not those nasty orcs who called him stupid.

That's 5 cases that are fairly common scenarios. Certainly your DM needs to be on board, but that's the case with all social encounters, because there are no social hit points to kill hostility, only loose mechanics that require rule 0 as a feature. And as long as you're subtle: not casting in front of them or using memory lapse or a banging bluff to dismiss the spell as something else, then you can use Charm effectively without making someone hate you.

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There's a 3rd level spell called create food and water. To allow a 0 level spell to turn poop into food makes this 0 level spell akin to a third level spell, as poop is ubiquitous and easily obtained.

As for create water being 0 level: Water is one of the 4 main elements of the prime material plane. Spells that create fire and air are of similar levels and presumably these things are conjured from the plane in question. Show me the demi-plane of food, then we can start talking about a 0 level spell making food from waste.

At best, I agree with the idea that the poop will not make you sick after a casting of the spell, with all the toxins, bacteria and other harmful elements purified, but the nutritional value of it will be that of soggy newspaper. And if the seige were extended, perhaps one round of purified s%+&e will get you through the day, but by the second and third goes, there's nothing nutritional left to process.

The spell does not CREATE food. So if an apple were dropped in acid and half of it was destroyed, the other half would not miraculously return. And that's exactly what is happening to the apple that you eat and poop out.

I'd even go so far as to say food which has been partially lost to rot will only return in the amount that is still intact: jerky will not become a steak again.

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Humphrey Boggard wrote:
Dr. Calvin Murgunstrumm wrote:
Cavs are a completely viable tier 3 class. They trump the fighter as far as I'm concerned, if only for an animal companion and the opportunity to rock a x3 charge with a x5 potential critical by level 3. If they nova, they can end a fight before it begins with a solo or a BBEG.
I'm a big fan of the Cav but one-shotting encounters isn't all that fun for me. Also, a lot of GMs would start setting up fights to prevent you from charging because one player trivializing encounters is boring for the other players.

If a class that, with little to no optimization, can warrant the DM nerfing it through rule 0, I think we can safely say that it's a viable class.

I would design fights to prevent one shot kills as a DM as well. But there's something sweet about coming across a terrible, slavering monster, huge in size and killing it dead in one glorious charge.

But that's a flavour best tasted as a treat, I agree. But that's the same with a pounce barbarian going nova. Both builds equal terrible solo murder.

Add to this the buffs, social skills and an animal companion, the cav is combat ready and has out of combat utility.

Halfling Barbarian wrote:
The mounted charging character still isn't getting a full action. He gets a single attack. He can't move, he can't make a full attack so he doesn't get a standard action, he gets one attack. Vital strike takes the Attack Action, which IS NOT THE SAME THING. All of the wording and FAQs are murky, and muddle the issue, and RAW can be debated, but the only one that has a real leg to stand on is the one that works like all other charges (since if a rule is unclear, you follow a similar rule).

You still get a move and a standard when your animal charges. Attack (Melee) is a standard action. What's not to get here?

Paizo.com wrote:
Your mount acts on your initiative count as you direct it. You move at its speed, but the mount uses its action to move.

So you have not used a move action, your mount has. Move action still intact. Want proof?

Paizo.com wrote:

You can cast a spell normally if your mount moves up to a normal move (its speed) either before or after you cast.


Mounts in Combat: Horses, ponies, and riding dogs can serve readily as combat steeds. Mounts that do not possess combat training (see the Handle Animal skill) are frightened by combat. If you don't dismount, you must make a DC 20 Ride check each round as a move action to control such a mount.


Fast Mount or Dismount: You can attempt to mount or dismount from a mount of up to one size category larger than yourself as a free action, provided that you still have a move action available that round. If you fail the Ride check, mounting or dismounting is a move action.

So we've still got our move action, and we can clearly still make a standard action

Paizo.com wrote:

Actions In Combat

Table: Actions in Combat
Standard Action
Attack (melee)


When you attack a creature smaller than your mount that is on foot, you get the +1 bonus on melee attacks for being on higher ground. If your mount moves more than 5 feet, you can only make a single melee attack. Essentially, you have to wait until the mount gets to your enemy before attacking, so you can't make a full attack. Even at your mount's full speed, you don't take any penalty on melee attacks while mounted.

What's murky here? I admit error on the multiplication of vital strike, making it much weaker, but there's no problem regarding the attack action.

Please show me where the attack (melee) standard action is NOT what vital strike uses. The only reason it omits (melee) is because there are other attack actions (like ranged and unarmed) that can also apply vital strike.

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Summoner, Summoner, Summoner.

It's a party of 6 that can heal, bump any skill with a buff spell and fill any role required. Add the fact that it's 3 arcane casters, and it's gravy. Beats 3 clerics any day.

Druid, Druid, Druid is a close second.

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Aeshuura wrote:

Vital Strike in FAQ

See the note in the link below:
Multiplying damage from multiple sources

The vital strike FAQ is irrelevant, because a mounted character isn't charging, the mount is. Their attack (standard action) simply gains it's benefits.

The multiplying damage one, however, seems to say that vital strike is not multiplied. My mistake.

So damage should be:

1d8 vital strike +
1d8+17 Lance +
1d8+17 charge multiplier +
1d8+17 spirited charge +
2d8+34 critical

So 4d8+51 and 6d8+85.

But Vital strike is AOK still.

Halfling Barbarian wrote:
I'm not trying to troll bait here, but all it says for mounted charges is that you gain the benefit of the mounts charge when you make an attack at the end of the charge, not that you get an attack action (which is a specific type of standard action, i.e. you don't get to use vital strike at the end of a charge, with iterative attacks, or as an attack of opportunity).

Um, what kind of action are you making an attack with?

Paizo.com wrote:

Actions In Combat

Table: Actions in Combat
Standard Action
Attack (melee)
Paizo.com wrote:

If your mount charges, you also take the AC penalty associated with a charge.

If you make an attack at the end of the charge, you receive the bonus gained from the charge.

Paizo.com wrote:

Vital Strike (Combat)

You make a single attack that deals significantly more damage than normal.

Prerequisites: Base attack bonus +6.

Benefit: When you use the attack action, you can make one attack at your highest base attack bonus that deals additional damage. Roll the weapon’s damage dice for the attack twice and add the results together before adding bonuses from Strength, weapon abilities (such as flaming), precision-based damage, and other damage bonuses. These extra weapon damage dice are not multiplied on a critical hit, but are added to the total.

You get an attack at the end of your mount's charge. This attack is the same as if you hadn't moved at all, except it cannot be a full attack and it gains the benefits of charging without having actually charged. The mount charges and you still have a full round action worth of actions, EXCEPT for a full attack. You have a standard action and a move action. That standard action gives you the chance to use vital strike.

When you use that standard action you use an attack action. You can use Vital Strike when you make an attack action. Vital Strike is weapon damage. The lance and spirited charge and cavalier's supreme charge all multiply weapon damage. Vital Strike does not mention anything but critical damage being exempted.

It's a pretty simple logic chain once you understand that all the mount's charge has done is deprive you of a full attack action, which is different from an attack action and has nothing to do with vital strike's usefulness.

So you have used rule 0 at your table to overturn a legal damage source. Congratulations, martials can't have nice things.

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wraithstrike wrote:

Since pounce is more likely to take place than a spirited charge if you are medium I would still take the barbarian, and you can vital strike on a spirited charge.

Seriously? At level 10? Large creatures are PRETTY darn common by then. And in those cases of 5ft corridors, how often is the barbarian pouncing anyways?

And whether the Barbarian is SLIGHTLY more optimal is a moot point. Point is that the Cavalier is viable, and actually has a fairly common corner case superiority to a Barbarian. The power attack multipliers alone dazzle.

And a full armour BAB with a host of party buffs that break the action economy is fantastic. Couple that with an animal companion who can take narrow frame and still contribute, and you're laughing.

Lets face it: Any scenario that involves the mount squeezing likely involves one of the melee martials waiting behind the tank, using their composite bow. This is as much of a corner case as not being able to charge. And the Cavalier is an excellent tank, so the Barb can stand behind him with his bow, lamenting how he cannot pounce.

Cavs are a completely viable tier 3 class. They trump the fighter as far as I'm concerned, if only for an animal companion and the opportunity to rock a x3 charge with a x5 potential critical by level 3. If they nova, they can end a fight before it begins with a solo or a BBEG.

As to dual wielding, TWF needs a full attack to work, so no such luck with the mounts charge. So no to two lances, yes to vital strike, RAW.

Halfling Barbarian wrote:

A good rule of thumb is if it's multiplied on a crit, it's multiplied on spirited charge. I have seen arguments both ways on the vital strike issue, and personally I say no, since at the end of the mounts charge you can make one attack and not iteratives, which is what you would lose out on using vital strike in the first place (don't worry, a good mounted charge character still one shots almost anything of an equal CR, so the martials still get nice things).

As for dual wielding lances, it follows the same schools of thought. If it is allowed (to which I say no again, you don't two weapon fight on a charge) then RAW you would only get bonus damage on one of them (See all of the RAGELANCEPOUNCE debate, which I do actually allow but limit the bonus damage to the first attack). Again, mounted lance characters do a ton of damage, and don't need much help. I'm still confused as to why more people write off the cavalier class, since it truly is a powerhouse.

RAW says Vital Strike needs an attack action and an attack action is precisely what you get at the end of a mount's charge.

On top of that Vital Strike calls it's bonus dice weapon damage, and spirited charge and lance say to double the weapon's damage.

RAW 6d8.

Zhayne wrote:

I've always felt that, to roleplay something, even if you don't agree with it, you have to understand it. Avoiding specifics for obvious reasons, I could play a member of Political Party B, even though I'm a member of Political Party A, because even if I disagree with most all of their viewpoints, I can see their point of view.

I don't *want* to be able to see the point of view of a torturer, rapist, or the like.

To each their own, but frankly 99% of D&D characters are killers: killers of sentient life no less.

Add to that that plenty of actors play serial killers, genocidal maniacs or worse. These people aren't evil, they just play it on the TV.

Roleplaying evil can be cathartic: you get to do something you would never do in real life. I've roleplayed a neutral ranger who would casually break bones in an interrogation. I could never do that in real life, but that's what a character is for, creating interesting narrative.

Maybe you don't watch silence of the lambs, because it freaks you out. I love it because it takes me outside my comfort zone.

Question wrote:

I'm not fan of options that look cool on paper but have limited real world applications.

Still waiting for someone to explain this...why would you use charm person over hypnotism, barring the HD limitation?

Duration, for starters. Hypnotism is 2d4 rounds. Charm person is an hour per level. That's an hour of being friends with Crush the Ogre, who will defend you against whatever isn't also his friend. And with a decent bluff, perhaps Crush will believe the orcs in the castle are just using him and don't appreciate him the way you do. That could mean 3 hours of having an ogre pet. Per casting of the spell.

Or having the captain of the guard escort you around, bypassing normal guards.

Or having several noblemen argue your cause at a council, because they like you.

You simply have to do it on the downlow, like many subterfuge spells. Hypnotism has a more direct approach, but charm person is more flexible for extended periods.

buddahcjcc wrote:

Our DM rules that he's doing something to the effect of 54 damage average sop no it doesnt work.

He's also not allowing him to dual weild lances though theres no technical reason you cant lol

You're DM sounds like he's picking on a martial having nice things. Does he disallow a lot of spells for casters?

6d8+51 is ~75 DPR. That's FAR from crazy.

Blakmane wrote:

In answer to your first question: yes, those calculations are correct.

In answer to your second question: no. Vital strike cannot be used as part of a charge, so this situation would never arise. Even if it did, you would apply critical logic IE the dice is added to the total, not multiplied -- so 2d8,3d8,4d8 in each of your respective conditions.

Gonna have to disagree on this one. You aren't charging, your mount is.

http://www.d20pfsrd.com wrote:

If your mount charges, you also take the AC penalty associated with a charge.

If you make an attack at the end of the charge, you receive the bonus gained from the charge.
http://www.d20pfsrd.com wrote:

Vital Strike (Combat)

You make a single attack that deals significantly more damage than normal.

Prerequisites: Base attack bonus +6.

Benefit: When you use the attack action, you can make one attack at your highest base attack bonus that deals additional damage. Roll the weapon’s damage dice for the attack twice and add the results together before adding bonuses from Strength, weapon abilities (such as flaming), precision-based damage, and other damage bonuses. These extra weapon damage dice are not multiplied on a critical hit, but are added to the total.

So the vital strike build is AOK and a great way to add to charge damage.

Based on the wording, though murky, I believe the lance and the spirited charge multiply the vital strike, as it counts as weapon damage, so:


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Blueluck wrote:
Quandary wrote:
And Beast Totem Pounce builds get nothing but accolades. If Charging is that hard, why doesn't Pounce get equally panned?
Charge builds are problematic because, like Spring Attack builds and Vital Strike builds, they only allow one attack per round. Pounce gets accolades because it solves that problem.

Yeah, but with x4 damage with peak BAB, your DPR is likely better with one attack than 4 attacks with diminishing BAB, other things not withstanding. And a first level cav is doing x2 and your barb is only getting one attack. It's not until end game when pounce overtakes spirited charge for potential hits, but the spirited charge still has a higher chance to hit.

Tack on a vital strike build and the mount charge build is formidable. The large creature argument is the only thing which is really bogging the cav down. That and the flying mounts.

But in the high levels, most dungeons are probably large creature friendly, and the Cav has a RAW GM clause for other mounts, and the mount is described as similar to a druids companion. They should have just allowed anything that could be ridden. I would as a GM.

Bellerophon is a great example of a flying cavalier. And elven eagle knights are all sorts of awesome. Or Deurgar carrion crawler knights. The class lends itself to so much that horse/camel/wolf denies, beast master not withstanding.

Craig Frankum wrote:
That's the cop out answer. I want to know if and how it is possible under Pathfinder rules. NO 3rd PARTY!!!

Sorry, only skimmed your OP. Seriously though, the system is arcane, but works decent well.

As to pathfinder only:

Lightsabers are clearly brilliant weapons.

I'd look at the Magus as a class with a focus on Mage Hand, Unseen Servant, buff spells and I'd let them add some charm spells to their list.

Throw in some Monk dips for the unarmoured AC, arrow deflection and crane style for the "can't be hit" factor. Fluff it so the weapon does the deflecting.

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