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Derklord wrote:
*yelling at the computer screen*

You don't need to be so angry about stuff mate. It makes having a conversation rather difficult. I don't hate the Unmonk or think they are a bad class, I just don't think their redesign was perfect and the topic of the thread has become one for thoughts about the unchained classes. One of the core Monk's issues was being MAD and having low attack rolls. They are still MAD, and they still have low attack rolls for a martial character. Screaming about how lots of classes don't have attack roll boosts isn't relevant to the fact that the redesign of the monk did not fix many of the core issues that made the core monk feel anemic.

Does the Unmonk do some cool things? Sure! Ki powers becoming modular, ditching the old 3.5 static monk in favor of adopting the Qui-gong monk style of adaptation allows for much more interesting/varied characters. Style strikes, while frustratingly limited to unarmed strikes without significant investment, are a neat addition to the class. Gaining proficiency with everything with the monk weapon quality was freaking inspired. The unmonk is smoother, easier to understand, and most importantly modular in design allowing for creative builds.

The point is "All of those things are cool, but did the change fix the problems with the Monk?" and I'm not sure the answer is yes. The changes made the monk feel more mystical, easier to play, and the class is good enough at combat with enough tools available to be min-maxed effectively. However, design wise I'm just not sure the goals of the unchained class were met. Players had problems with the Monk, the monk still has those problems. Instead, other areas of the monk were buffed and polished. The calculus for figuring out whether polishing other areas makes up for not addressing the core concerns is not a hard kind of math and will leave things up to personal opinion.

Derklord wrote:

Fair, I accept the unmonk remarks though any class that requires cash money spent per encounter is suspect in my book. My GM's tend to be stingy with resources though so that is probably personal bias.

Disagree on the other martial characters however. Gunslingers do not need an inherent accuracy boost because they target touch AC. The whole strength of the class is that you can take absurd penalties to your accuracy and dish out reliable damage against things way outside your weight class. Avenger Vigilante is, indeed, the accuracy boost for the Vigilante in the form of +5 BAB over 20 levels. That is the whole point of being an Avenger, being a pseudo-Rogue with +5 BAB over a regular rogue or ninja. Brawler doesn't get a conventional accuracy boost but it does gain +5 accuracy on combat maneuvers. Cavaliers and Samurai are subpar in many aspects and a lack of accuracy boost hurts them quite a bit. Its not good to be sharing their company on a class analysis list.

Rather than focus on characters without built in accuracy boosts though...Fighter, Anti/Paladin, Barbarian, Bloodrager, Ranger, Shifter, Slayer, and Swashbuckler all have accuracy boosts built into their chassis as full BAB classes. Let me just say that I don't think the Unmonk burning a ki point to get a level scaling accuracy boost for rounds per level would be unreasonable and leave it at that. It would simply put it in better company.

Monks can spec into weapon finesse to allow them to mostly drop strength. If you don't mind flying kick being weak, you can even go with Agile Handwraps and become a pure dex-monk. That drops the monk down to just 3 stats, which is perfectly manageable.

Yes, its unfortunate that Strength monks require a much higher point buy but until Paizo decides to offer Monks an accuracy boost like all other full BAB characters you have to cut corners somewhere.

Eh, a feat that changes the way a Dragon's breath works (or even a specific change to a named dragon) isn't going to drastically alter the CR thanks to the time delay between breath weapon attacks and their limited range. As long as the dragon needs to recharge between breath weapon attacks, can't use the breath weapon mid-move, and the breath weapon has to start from the dragon's maw you won't break anything. Start changing those aspects and you'll break things fast.

What do you want to do with them? I can point you at the rules and let you have at it, or tell you how I would go about it. If I had a little bit more information I could help you craft something fun and memorable, or if you wanna work on by yourself they are here.

If you're in a home game and a feat doesn't exist that does what you want, as the GM it is your prerogative to create said feat.

They look just like the mimics from the Prey video game. I wanna do a Prey campaign at some point, just mimics everywhere.

Sometimes a single day does stretch across multiple sessions, but I try not to have too many small encounters regardless. My group fights slowly, lots of in house discussion between the players on what would be the best thing to do. They're all fairly new to Pathfinder, and so I try my best to encourage this kind of discussion and cooperation. Still, it does slow the combat down even against multiple fights against "easy" opponents.

With only 2.5-3 hours of game time each week I prefer to keep the story advancing, Avoid bogging down the game with excess combats, and make sure the fights they do have are memorable. Hence, asking about singular large fights.

CR+3 has been my goalpost, but I've had mixed experiences (partially due to the small variance in a given CR's foes strength) and nearly killed my player's dog with a Scythe Crit the other day. Trying to get some advice on these big fights to avoid the kind of looks I got from that >_>, you'd have thought I'd stabbed their actual dog for 64 damage.

Hey folks, my group meets about once a week for 2-3 hours and so we kinda scrunch the game into those 2-3 hours. A lot of times, to save on game time, this means that the only fights and puzzles that show up are BIG fights and BIG puzzles. However, as I understand it a standard CR = encounter is meant to use up about 1/3rd of the party's resources for the day and not be terribly threatening.

As a result, I end up just sorta guessing my way through encounter design. I've gotten pretty good at it, but every now and then I realize that I've put the PCs into too much danger if I play things perfectly and need to scale the enemy tactics back to prevent untimely PC deaths. I don't mind PCs dying if it makes a good plot point, but dying to the monster of the week isn't ideal.

Anyway, how would you folks go about designing 1 big encounter per adventuring "day" with the current CR system? Just start throwing CR+3 encounters at them, use that as the XP budget and throw a ton of smaller CR= or CR-1 enemies?

I mean, if your GM is fine with house rules you can have a paladin of any alignment other than neutral as follows:

Take a Warpriest, give it D10 HP and Full BAB but replace its spell progression with that of the Paladin. Change the line to where it says "Cleric spells of 7th level and above are not on the warpriest class spell list," and replace the 7th with 5th. Remove Sacred Weapon and Focus weapon, give them Divine Grace and Smite Evil. Then replace the word Evil in smite Evil with whatever alignment the god hates most. Swap the Capstone with that of the Paladin. Lastly, replace the word Wisdom with Charisma.

Tada, you have a Paladin that can be anything except True Neutral because I have no idea what a N Paladin would smite. This is a chop job, I made this up in 5 minutes, but an amenable DM would probably rule that as an under-powered Archetype of the Warpriest.

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This is honestly a two pronged problem. First, to maintain the worlds cohesion the characters need to suffer some kind of penalty. There are plenty of suggestions in the thread plus they could become wanted felons, have to escape jail, go on a quest to redeem themselves, perform a task for a rival god to get under their protection, etc etc. Actions have consequences, it should be rule 0.

The second prong of the problem is that the characters perform actions at the behest of players, and no amount of in game response will change the players behavior. Taking actions against them without explaining why will make them resent you. You cannot punish them directly without further violating the unwritten contract you have both agreed to when you pulled them into a table top RPG. However, what you can do is address the problem with them. They're human, talk to them and communicate. Explain their misstep using a real life example (I don't know, walking into the vatican and taking the pope's hat) and how badly this breaks the 4th wall for you. Make them understand that this sort of behavior hurts your enjoyment of the game. Make them understand that it is not their bad decisions that frustrate you, but that they never considered the consequences of those bad decisions.

Personally, I love when my players make bad decisions that are in character. It is my freaking jam when someone is well enough in tune with their character to give me the go ahead as a GM to let cause and effect play out. I had a Bloodrager take a deal with a devil, she knew it was a bad idea. The paladin told her it was a bad idea. However, she wanted laser vision and she got it...and it doesn't ever turn off.

Thats a moment in my career as a GM that won't ever fall out of memory. Its one of those stories folks tell each other around the fire late at night, well in other gaming groups. "Do you remember that one time I wished for laser vision and the devils made it so it wouldn't turn off?" Ideally, that is what you should try to work on with your group. Turn the bad decisions from unconscious decisions into conscious decisions made based off the characters desires they can look back on years later and go "Remember that time we pulled a heist off in the middle of 100 paladins?"

Just, you know, with less getting caught.

Dasrak wrote:

It's a 3.5 feat that never got converted to Pathfinder, sadly. Magical Knack is the closest we have.

Tangentially related, we have the Prestigious Spellcaster feat. It only works on prestige classes with "dead" spellcasting levels, and is only gives back one level, but it gives you spells known and spell slots and not just caster level.


I was afraid of that, I've been bouncing back and forth between a 3.5 game in which I am a player and a Pathfinder game in which I GM. The feats have been mixing in my head a lot. I'm working on a write up for Prestige classes right now and couldn't find that feat on Archives on Nethys. Makes sense since it doesn't exist.

Guess I'm stuck with Knack and Prestigious Spellcaster to solve these issues. Thanks fellows.

Hey folks, I remember a feat existing that boosted a spellcaster's caster level by up to 4 levels but no more than their Hit Dice. It didn't give more spells known or spell slots, but helped multiclass casters recover lost levels.

Am I nuts and mixing it up with a trait or another feat?

I swear I read it in one of the official paizo books and I can't find it. It is like Boon Companion for spellcasters.

Look, I'm just saying that high level fighter ought to be able to FLEX hard enough to cause an explosion without people complaining about how it is unrealistic in a fantasy game.

Fight men deserve nice things too you know.

The Insinuator Antipaladin needs to be evil but can serve a single alignment of Neutral god as well. CE Insinuators can serve CE, NE, or CN. NE Insinuators can serve LE, CE, NE, and N. LE Insinuators can serve LE, LN, and NE forces.

Unfortunately, you do have to be evil which is a shame because its a perfect archetype to be neutral.

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To continue with blahpers point, a 15 spellcraft check is needed to successfully identify a 0th level spell. A 25 Knowledge Arcana check is necessary to identify a 0th level spell that targets you, a 20 will identify a 0th level spell already active. Both of these can only be attempted either as or after a spell is being cast, and most spells do not take a full turn to cast. This means you have about a 3 second window to react to the casting a spell.

Most notably, Spellcraft is a trained ONLY skill which means that unless an NPC invests into spellcraft they can't identify a spell as its being cast anyway. Spellcraft is not a common skill choice amongst the common populace, as they do not need to know HOW magic works. Even in a high-magic game setting, they only need to know that Magic does indeed work. Most people have no idea about HOW their smartphone works, only how to work it.

Now imagine a smartphone that can make someone willingly hand you 20 bucks, go on a date with their daughter, and let you borrow their horse. That smartphone is called Charm Person and it takes a 17 spellcraft check to identify while its being cast or a 27 Knowledge Arcana check to realize you've been zonked. In other words, you need a Bachelors Degree in computer science to even know someone is trying to zonk you and Doctorate to realize you've been targeted.

Just because a spell has no visible effect other than "magic happened" DOES NOT MEAN THE SPELL WAS HARMLESS.

Overlap Pete wrote:
Another element to consider as part of this thread: what about those classes and creatures who have 'constant' magic effects? one of my WftC players runs an elf occultist with constant detect magic vision... I mean, if magic is always frowned upon, he'd be in trouble.

The good news is that most spells that would create problems are spells that need to be cast in the current moment. Long term buff spells, even visible ones like Arcane Sight or Mage Armor, are less of an issue because they tend to have less potential for criminal use. I agree that the game is more interesting and feels better if longer term spells are either not visible or less alarming to citizens.

This can also create and incentivise careful use of spells, as for the OP, before the party meets with the noble the cleric could cast detect evil. The spell lasts 10 minutes per level as long as the cleric concentrates, allowing them to meet and gauge the noblewoman only IF they thought about it well before hand. Meanwhile, Discern Lies and detect thoughts are 1/round and 1/minute respectively. The cleric could potentially slip into the bathroom and prep detect thoughts, but can't set it up in advance without giving away their position. Discern lies requires line of sight and effect, so its pretty much a no-go in a social setting.

I'm quite fond of the regional Exemplar trait, gaining 2 class skills in and of itself is awesome as that is basically +6, very good for classes with restricted lists of class skills. Free UMD on charisma based classes, that sort of thing.

I also quite like the faith one, as its a huge defensive bonus. Slap that on top of something like a Superstitious Barbarian and you're never going to fail your saves and turn on the party.

Deathless One is correct for the most part, but it also depends on your gaming group. If your team optimizes the GM needs to optimize in return to keep things interesting. Outside of PFS and APs, the game should feel the same difficulty regardless of PC optimization. If a campaign is meant to be hard, the GM should take the time and effort to work around any kind of opitmization/shenanigans to make it work. Sometimes its harder to compensate for a clueless party than a prepared party though, again it depends on the campaign.

Within these groups, however, the players should be equally optimized/unoptimized. Problems occur and bad feelings happen within a group when one person shows up with a really cool Strength Kineticist and the others all build maximally optimal stuff like AM BARBARIANS riding Synthasist Summoners.

Before you commit 5-10 points of your stat buy to strength (which reduces your ability to have other higher stats) to deal extra damage only once you have a conductive weapon you are stuck with at best lets say 2d6+4 as a Tengu and for 1 burn PER TURN you can have an extra d6 of energy damage. At level 1, thats not bad but you're basically a fighter who can hurl energy bolts as their ranged weapon. By level 3 you are competing with either 2d6+2+Con or 2d6+1/2 Con and touch AC. You're not even better in melee than these folks because they could take Kinetic Blade and Weapon Finesse.

You'd be better off being a Telekineticist and hurling a conductive weapon with telekinetic blast. That way you still use Dex to hit, Con for damage, the weapon damage, and can then channel basic kinetic blasts through the thrown weapon. As your options for composite blast damage as a Telekineticist are poor until you get your second expanded element at 15, this is a decent way to boost your low damage. Worth noting that if you want to be able to swing the weapon normally you need to downgrade to a finesseable weapon. Once again Tengu come out on top with the Estoc at 2d4, while everyone else gets their choice of weapons that deal 1d6 points of damage. Worth noting, the Kinetic Blade description specifically notes that it works with the Telekinetic Blast so you can get this damage boost both in melee and range.

Total damage (Earliest you can pick up a conductive weapon is 5, 6 is more likely. I'm going to use 7th level to compare composite blasts.

COmposite Blast at level 7:
- Physical 8d6+8+Con = average of 36 + Con
- Energy 8d6 + 1/2 Con = 28 + 1/2 Con
BURN = 2

Conductive Telekineticist
- Tengu: 2d4+4d6+5+2x Con = 24 + 2x Con
- Everyone Else: 1d6+4d6+5+2x Con = 22.5 + 2x Con
Burn = 0

Our damage is only 13.5 behind a physical composite blast without expending any of our daily resources. I am fairly sure that you would need to pay 2x the burn to channel an ability through the Conductive weapon BUT as we are using a Simple Blast to deliver the conductive charge we can just slap the additional effects we want onto the regular blast. Bowling works quite nicely, Many Throw could be debated with your GM, etc

Only problem with this is that we need to pull back our item and we can't use Telekinetic Boomerrang since we want to loosen our grip. Since we rely on our CON we can't cripple ourselves with a blinkback belt so we need to make our weapon either a returning weapon which limits our options or a called weapon which consumes our swift action but prevents people from stealing it. This does work with Kinetic Blade, so we could just melee with it.

Oh, we also need to make sure that our weapon doesn't explode from taking the same amount of damage it would normally deal when thrown, so we need to make sure our weapon can soak 1d6+Enhancement+Con. The weapon shouldn't take additional damage from its properties like flaming or conductive, but you might get some table variation there. I didn't factor in deadly Aim with my quick damage numbers up front but you've got an extra 4 to 8 damage in there which is okay but less good when you only make 1 attack per round. You pretty much need an adamantine weapon though, because of critical hits. A steel weapon breaks most of the time on a successful crit (12 Hardness and 20 HP means you break the steel mace if you crit for more than 22 total damage). Adamantine helps by pushing that limit up to 23ish HP and 22 hardness, giving you an allowance of 32 damage from a single crit before your weapon gains the broken condition.

I am not sure, but its possible that the Telekinetic Blast being carried through the Conductive Weapon gains the weapon's critical range. I believe the multiplier would still be 2x. The question is whether this counts as bonus damage dice, in which case there is no critical multipler, or whether it works more like Spell Strike as you are channeling an ability with an independent attack roll that can crit on its own.

I mean, they should book it unless someone has hit them with a dimensional anchor.

I believe that the Warhammer/Battle Axe portion of the weapon uses the statistics for a standard Battle Axe/Warhammer.

My reasoning is that the Axe Musket states that it does Bludgeoning and Piercing damage. Meanwhile, the Battle Axe does only slashing damage. Thus, the stats listed for the Axe Musket are only describing the Musket portion of the weapon and you need to refer to the Battle Axe weapon entry for that portion.

Making the musket shadow shooting seems reasonable instead of going for a Musket Master build.

While not PFS friendly, the humble Axe/Warhammer Musket is a much cheaper alternative to the shadow-shooting buckler gun. While your melee attack only crits for 3x damage, you are always two handing your weapon, do not need to worry about your handedness, and do not need to worry about your enemies realizing your munitions are only 20% real. The downside to using an axe/warhammer musket is however being confined to playing as a Musket Master.

Additional magical properties I rather like on crit-fishing builds include the Thundering property that adds (in this case) 2d8 sonic damage on a 3x crit, a fortitude save vs Deafness, and only costs +1. With a heavy pick you would deal 3d8 sonic damage

Last thing worth noting, you need to spend the grit point when declaring your readied action. This is unfortunate as you burn a grit point if no one attacks you.

There are a few such changes, thought its worth noting that Aon.prd has both versions of Lore Warden listed. It does not have both versions of the Juju mystery. That is what struck me as odd.

Huh, Aonprd has a different Juju oracle than d20pfsrd.

My apologies if that is the one you wanted to discuss.

Well, for one thing its an Oracle so you've got good things going right there already. Oracles are super flavorful divine sorcerers and almost always pose a good time. Worth noting that Juju gives Bluff, Intimidate, Knowledge Nature, and Survival as useful class skills which allows for either a Nature themed Oracle capable of tracking/surviving in the wild or a very efficient party face.

The spells are all over the place, but basically give you Wild Empathy, some excellent social tools, the ability to instantly cripple fights on a failed willsave, the ability to turn one encounter against the other on a failed will save, instant siege weapons in the form of 1d3 Stone Giants, Mass Charm Monster, and freaking Shape Change making a high level Juju Oracle into a pseudo-druid with the Cleric spell list. All in all, I love the spells its much better than say rolling Flame and just being handed fire damage over and over.

Beast Tongue is a bad revelation, you get Speak for Animals for free. Connaissance is a better version of Charmed Life, even if you have to spend a Full Round Action to recharge it. Gaining 1/2 your level on a saving throw is basically an auto-success. Ensnare the Soul is kinda meh, I get the Juju Zombie flavor they are looking for but you get Charm Monster if you are patient and don't need Charm Person. Dominate Person is alright but you never get Dominate Monster which is much better. Juju Sense is worth a feat, thats all I can really say about it. I'd ususally rather have another feat instead, but its something?

Night Terror seems...bad at first glance (and is) but is slightly more interesting when you note that you can use this ability while under the effects of Haste or Two Weapon fighting to make additional attacks. Leading to a max of 7d10 damage in exchange for 3 feats! Still bad, but funny.

Path of the Snake is okay, you never know when being able to walk through walls is useful. The Stealth bonus is bad, and you can't cast spells, and the whole duration is used at once. Now, Summon Nature's Spirits is a pretty cool ability as it does not actually consume a spell slot, is a standard action, and gives you Augment Summoning for free. Its a shame its 1/day but its still very solid throughout your career. Unwilling Host is mass confusion 1/day and thus exists as an option you could take, or not. Its just kind of there. Oh, Spiritual Protection is great as it means you do not need to waste a spell slot on learning the Protection Against or Circle Against spells.

As oracles gain six revelations naturally I'd suggest (in no particular order)

- Connaissance (Worth Noting, this doesn't stack with your Capstone)
- Summon Nature's Spirits
- Juju Sense
- Spiritual Defense
- Path of the Snake
- Ensnare the Soul

As far as the Capstone goes, wow thats a pretty good one. Getting a free Extended Dominate Monster gives you 40 day periods of control over a large number of monsters (likely 8ish), another +Cha to your Armor Class, Saving Throws, and Knowledge Checks turns you into a real end game monster.

I think I'd personally prefer another Mystery, I'm quite partial towards Lunar, but I can't deny that Juju (while weird) is quite strong. A shame so many of their revelations are 1/day affairs that tend to obsolescence from their other abilities/spells. I could see this being fun though if you wanted a more druidic oracle or wanted to design a very flavorful bayou BBEG.

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Astrid Nea Liligradd was my first Pathfinder character, she had a happy backstory and still does to this day whenever I bust her out of retirement. She is a nearly-human Aasimar with an Oracle Mystery related to the sky like Wind, Solar, Lunar, Sky, or etc who came from a rich family. Her days as an adventurer are partly to find some good husband/wife material, party to gather wealth for her family, and partly to fulfill her job as a noble to support the common people.

Of course, she's a ruthless socializer who will use a diplomacy check every other sentence to get whatever she can for free. She's a huge coward and will try to talk down, plot away, and only as a last resort fight her foes. She relies entirely on others to fight for her, including at times an army of summoned monsters, buffed allies, or her own animal companion. Lastly, she generally believes that the laws are for the little people of the world to help make society function and that as a noble woman she is above them provided her actions are in support of the greater good.

Happy backstory, all her family is alive and functioning, she just has some negative personality traits as a result of never really facing adversity in her life.

David knott 242 wrote:

And if you take the Racial Heritage (Kobold) feat, you will qualify for a feat (Scaled Disciple) that will let you use a level of oracle to qualify for Dragon Disciple and advance your oracle spellcasting via that prestige class.

Holycrap thats a cool find!

Honestly, after looking into it the Doom Slayer should just have the Inevitable Stalker template without the speed debuff or special qualities.

The most recent DOOMGUY is:

Extremely Fast and Agile
Heavily Armored
Never encumbered
Capable of tearing apart demons of any size with his bare hands
Heals himself upon tearing apart said demons
Can dent/destroy solid metal with his bare hands
Proficient with Firearms/Technology

Translating that to Pathfinder is difficult in the extreme, leaving you with probably a Ranger/Savage Technologist Barbarian/Brawler of some sort. Likely with mythic tiers, cause he is a one man army.

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I also support Claxon here, its not that a turtle is a bad idea (high defenses can be their own reward, they let you take increased risks) but Pathfinder is a game where you have limited resources. The more resources you invest into becoming unkillable, the fewer resources you have available to do everything else.

The point I'm trying to make here is not that being a hardened glacier of a wo/man is just the first step. The second step is answering the question "Now what?"

I'm reminded of a Samurai that I had recently in one of my games, her Armor Class and HP were absurd and together with Resolve she was terribly difficult to take down with other effects. Still, enemies were able to mostly ignore here because her chance to hit them was quite low for a full BAB character of her level. The reason for this was her low starting strength (only a 14 in a 20 point buy) and the fact that she was using Weapon Trick (Choke Up) to wield a polearm in one hand. This reduced her chance to hit by another two, so that even though she was built to be an AoO machine she couldn't hit anything when she attacked.

Fortunately, the armor master's handbook came out during the campaign and she was able to retrain into Shield Brace which fixed her low accuracy issues. Now she was able to actually hit things pretty reliably. However, she still hadn't answered the question of "Now What?" as everyone in the party was able to hit things fairly reliably. She didn't do enough damage to instantly slay anything that ran through her AoO, so enemies were able to tank a blow in exchange for rushing down our casters. She needed something more, and thats where Stand Still came into play.

Stand Still allowed her to actually play as a Tank, forcing her enemies to stop within her zone of threat and interact with her for at least one round. Together with reach, and a spiked wooden shield, she was able to force foes into fighting her because it was very difficult to get completely outside her range. Even a withdraw didn't do it.

Here, she had finally answered the question of "Now What?" Her high defenses now served a purpose, because she was able to force enemies to behave and interact with her as she intended. Thats what you need to do Rorek, you need to answer the question "I'm very hard to kill, but now what?"

I agree with Ryan, the easiest way to become a tank is to become a gigantic reach monster. The way you tank in Pathfinder is not to become unkillable, but instead to force your enemies into attacking you.

Even without setting up a combat patrol, you can have 25ft reach as fast as level 4. I prefer to be an Abyssal Bloodrager as it allows you to Enlarge for free upon raging, an Aberrant Bloodrager needs to reach level 11 before it can Enlarge for free. This is important because Enlarge Person has a casting time of 1 whole round. Meanwhile, long arm has a casting time of 1 standard and gives the Abyssal Bloodrager the same reach as an Aberrant. The one extra move action you get per combat allows you to move into position with your gigantic polearm. The trade is that Aberrant gives better defensive powers but I really like that move action to position in the first round of combat.

Initiative is rolled, your turn comes up and you rage. You grow to size Large, and then cast long arm. Longarm doesn't sadly double the reach again so we cap out at 25ft for our reach. We move into a position to shelter all our allies as if we had a 15ft aura, trying to keep them within 3-4 squares (3 is better as at 4 they can get 5ft'd). Also, a Lucerne Hammer hits for 3d6 at this point and since you can hit enemies 25ft in the air you pretty much prevent melee combat from happening near you.

My party hired these fellows on after an epic game of cat and mouse that spanned sessions. They were made for 10th level but I elevated them to 16th for you, except I really can't be bothered to get them new spells or feats or magus arcana. Sorry. Maybe given a few days to tinker with them I'd have them fully up to snuff.

Pugwampi Tricksters:
Pugwampi Trickster
Pugwampi 1/Hexcrafter Eldritch Archer Magus 16
3, 24, 8, 24, 14, 12
HP: 62hp
SR 23, DR 15/Cold Iron
AC: 31 (10 +2 Size +7 Dexterity +3 Natural Armor +3 Deflection +6 Mithral Chain Coat)
BAB +12/7/2
CMB: +6
CMD: 23
To Hit: +24/19/14
+3 Conductive Shortbow: 1d4-1
Skills: 128
Stealth (16): + 44 (without invisibility)
Perception (16): 21
Sense Motive (11): 16
Bluff (16): 20
Diplomacy (11): 15
Acrobatics (10): 19
Escape Artist (10): 19
Disable Device (10): 19
Sleight of Hand (10): 19
Climb (1): 10
Swim (1): 10
Spellcraft (16): 26

SQ: Tricky Magic -> Stealth vs perception to avoid showing magic
Ranged Spell Combat, Ranged Spellstrike, Hex Magus, Knowledge Pool, Improved Spell Combat, Fighter Training, Heavy Armor, Medium Armor, Focusing Spellstrike
SLA: At Will - Prestidigitation, Speak with Animals, Shatter

Unluck Aura (Su)
A pugwampi radiates an aura of unluck to a radius of 20 feet. Any creature in this area must roll two d20s whenever a situation calls for a d20 roll (such as an attack roll, a skill check, or a saving throw) and must use the lower of the two results generated. This is a mind-affecting effect that does not work on animals, other gremlins, or gnolls. Any character who gains any sort of luck bonus (such as that granted by a luckstone or divine favor) is immune to the pugwampi unluck aura.

Feat: Racial: Arcane Strike, Riving Strike, Latent Curse
1: Expert Sniper
3: Skill Focus Stealth
3: Magus Arcana - Accursed Strike
5: Signature Skill: Stealth
5: Extra Magus Arcana (Slumber)
6: Magus Arcana - Spell Blending
7: Hellcat Stealth
9: Soothsayer
9: Magus Arcana - Arcane Scent
11: Protective Fortune
12: Magus Arcana -
15: Magus Arcana -

Hexes: Scar, Slumber, Protective Fortune

Spells Prepared (Spells Known at bottom)
Spells: 5/7/7/7/5/4/2
0: Detect Magic, Dancing Lights, Ghost Sound, Mage Hand, Read Magic
1: Expeditious Retreat, Itching Curse, Silent Image, Unseen Servant, Grease, Auditory Hallucination, Hex Vulnerability
2: Puzzlebox, Invisibility, Spider Climb, Blindness/Deafness, Time Shudder, ________, _______
3: Bestow Curse, Major Image, Selective Invisibility, Dispel Magic, ________, _______, ________
4: Mischievous Shadow, Illusion of Treachery, _______, ________, _______
5: _______, ________, _______, ______
6: ___________, ___________

Spells Known:
0: Detect Magic, Dancing Lights, Ghost Sound, Mage Hand, Read Magic, Dancing Lights
1: Expeditious Retreat, Itching Curse, Silent Image, Unseen Servant, Grease, Auditory Hallucination, Hex Vulnerability, Ill Omen, Glue Seal
2: Puzzlebox, Invisibility, Spider Climb, Blindness/Deafness, Time Shudder, Shifted Steps, Lesser Curse Terrain, Mark of Blood, Pilfering Hand
3: Bestow Curse, Major Image, Selective Invisibility, Dispel Magic, Fly, Calamitous Flailing, Arcane Sight, Curse of Disgust, Kalistocrat’s Nightmare, Clairaudience/Clairvoyance, Mindlocked Messager
4: Mischievous Shadow, Illusion of Treachery, Curse Terrain, Curse of the Outcast, Curse of Burning Sleep, Absorb Rune, Complex Hallucination, Dimension Door, Lesser Geas
5: 6+ New Spells
6: 2+ New Spells

Anyway, with the ability to deliver curses from a distance, along with a conductive longbow to deliver Hexes through their shortbow attacks, these little puggies are horribly difficult to pin down. Selecting quite a bit of illusion and counter magic inbetween the fantastically fun curses they can deliver allows them to pretty much come and go as they please. Hellcat Stealth for hide in plain sight means they don't even need to worry about constant invisibility. The little ability I'm fairly certain I made up (not gonna definately take credit, these guys showed up months ago and I didn't cite my sources) called Tricky Magic means that unless the players can beat their stealth roll they can hide their magic too.

Watching my players mobilize an entire clan of dwarves to chase these guys into a trap was one of my favorite moments from my current campaign. The fact that they are still part of the campaign as hirelings makes me giddy.

Skirmishers are tricky to work in Pathfinder because its tough to move swiftly in and out of combat. Most opponents can keep up with the PCs, and thanks to attacks of opportunity once combat has been entered it usually ends up grinding to a halt. The best results are Monks or Horsemen with Spring Attack/Shot on the Run/Ride By Attack who can either go in/out or break past the enemy without getting mauled/tripped.

Depends on the game you're playing,

My table works together with the party telling a story, the fights come about 1/day (though there are plenty of other encounters per day to keep them going) and the fights are hard but typically fair. I've even added some house rules to prevent accidental death (all healing effects work like Breath of Life but impose long term negative consequences that last a week in game). The death of a character at my table is a really big epic storytelling moment that only comes up rarely, with the same weight other groups might put into an alignment shift or a paladin falling from grace.

At other tables, the game is more of a cooperative board game where death can be an outcome for failing to anticipate the threats thrown your way. This gives combat a real visceral tension and makes every threat you come across potentially game ending for your character (at least until death becomes cheap with higher level play).

What type of game are you running? If you're all together casually to have fun, tell a story, and experience a strange other world then toning down fights is fine. If your party really wants to stretch themselves and grow better at the mechanics of the game, then you should challenge them with the full danger they would normally encounter. Though, perhaps allowing them to flee and then buffing up the encounter when they all get together to face it again, is a reasonable solution.

Dwarf Kineticists are awesome, a racial boost to their core stat of Con alongside a huge boost to saving throws makes them hellishly tanky. Notably, a Dwarven Kinetic Knight is a pretty fun (if limiting as it makes the Dwarf a pure melee combatant instead of a burst-mage).

I think Deathward was more useful back in the "good old days" of instant player death being a core mechanic of the game. I know Deathward was invaluable to getting the "No One Died" achievement on the Enhanced Edition of Baldurs Gate 2. Now that player generation takes so long and deaths are far less common, I doubt Death Ward sees nearly as much use. So much of it is nostalgia, like this thread from 2013.

God I miss 2013.

DM Livgin wrote:
The classic hazard of GMing: not actually reading the full ability... Oops.

I hear you, not only was I very disappointed with the Hellknight's limitations on their abilities but I also fell victim to this recently. Got a new player into my game with an Oracle and completely forgot they get all Cure or Inflict spells for free X_X

Not sure that works Livgin, you need to use up two uses of the ability to activate a Conductive weapon and even a 9th level Hell Knight can only use Wrack 3/day.

Arachnofiend wrote:
Derklord wrote:
(what other class can fly, be invisible, and walk through walls at 4th level?)
Wait, when was this added? I remember being wholly unimpressed with the ki power list, with most things being either too weak or too expensive to bother investing in.

Empty Body costs 3 Ki Points and grants the Monk Etherealness for 1 minute, it can be taken as your level 4 Ki Power and was in Unchained as one of the original unKi Powers.

benwin007 wrote:
Why nature spell all natural attacks? Wouldn't you just need to be able to do it to one natural attack? What do you know that I don't?
ShroudedInLight wrote:
See, we need to take Natural Spell Combat with every type of Natural Attack we want to attack with during spell combat. Since our goal is to eventually be casting Form of the Dragon 2 and stomping on people, we need to select Natural Spell Combat a lot.
Melkiador wrote:
Natural Spell Combat wrote:
Each time he selects this arcana, he selects another natural weapon. For example, a magus could select this arcana twice, choosing claw attacks and bite attacks. This would allow him to use a full-round action to make all of his claw attacks with his free hand and all of his bite attacks in addition to casting a spell.

To put it simply, if we want to full attack as a Dragon with Claw, Bite, Bite w/Touch Spell attached, Wing, Wing, Tailslap then we need to take Natural Spell Combat a lot.

Scott Wilhelm wrote:
I personally do not like Unchained Monk, but I especially dislike it for multiclassing.

Meanwhile, I LOVE it for Multiclassing. Sure you lose out on a good Will Save but you get full BAB growth and a Flurry of Blows that doesn't suck when you switch classes. If you never plan on getting style strikes you don't need to worry about unarmed progression since you can just wield a Templesword or something as your primary weapon. Even if you do decide to go unarmed, now that Handwraps can be enchanted we can just live with dealing 1d6 melee damage as our base weapon dice per attack since its so much cheaper to buy into Unarmed Strike builds.

While I hate to upset a pure Paladin/Monk multiclass because I love it dearly, I do have to point out that my favorite silly Dragon Disciple build revolves around taking two levels of Scaled Fist Monk, two levels of Divine Hunter Paladin, two levels of Draconic Blooded Sorcerer and then transitioning into Dragon Disciple at level 7. By taking the Favored Prestige Class feat before we actually enter Dragon Disciple, we can use our 7th level feat to take Prestigious Spell-caster to sync up with our Caster Levels so we never miss out on a spell-level. The end result is 16 caster levels giving us 8th level spellcasting and 14 BAB.

Taking only a single level of Scaled Fist Monk and taking a level of Sorcerer instead reduces our BAB by 1, gives up Evasion and a Monk Bonus Feat, but does give us three more spells known (One 7th, one 8th, and Form of the Dragon 3) and a third use of our breath weapon (17d6 DC 18+Cha).

You probably want to skip dragon style since we don't get unarmed strike naturally. Whether you want to go claw or blade is up to you (though if you were running this guy from level 1 you'd have to use a blade for the first 3 levels) but I'm going to build for claws. After all, you said you wanted to go full dragon and what kind of dragon relies on their Sword (except as a handy backup weapon).

As far as feats go, I'd suggest investing in Combat Casting and Intensified Spell to pair with Shocking Grasp once you have access to 2nd level spells (If we forgo any dips we can take the Magical Lineage trait and be casting Intensified Shocking Grasps as level 1 spells which is PRETTY GOOD). We unfortunately need to invest into Intensified Spell earlier than we would like, but thats life.

As far as Magus Arcana, our level 3 Arcana is Natural Spell Combat and then it gets tricky. See, we need to take Natural Spell Combat with every type of Natural Attack we want to attack with during spell combat. Since our goal is to eventually be casting Form of the Dragon 2 and stomping on people, we need to select Natural Spell Combat a lot. We nearly manage to keep pace, we get to incorporate our Bite Attack at the same level we get it from Dragon Disciple, same with the Wings, but sadly we lose out on Spellcombat Full Attacks with a tail for 1 level.

This leaves us with a 19th level feat and the 19th level Magus Arcana to choose (alongside an extra level 1 feat if you go Human).

Magus 1-6/Dragon Disciple 7-16/Magus 17-20
Magical Lineage: Shocking Grasp
1: Combat Casting
3: Favored Prestige Class: Dragon Disciple
5: Intensified Spell
7: Prestigious Spellcaster
9: Extra Magus Arcana (Natural Spell Combat: Bite)
11: Prestigious Spellcaster
13: Extra Magus Arcana (Natural Spell Combat: Wings)
15: Prestigious Spellcaster
17: Extra Magus Arcana (Natural Spell Combat: Tail Swipe)

Magus Arcana:
3: Natural Spell Combat: Claw
6: Close Range

End Result: At 17th level we morph into a Dragon as a SWIFT ACTION (basically, Quickened Form of the Dragon 2) and make a full attack w/ Claw, Bite, Wing, Wing, Tail + casting a free spell. If our spell is a touch attack, we get to make a free Bite. If we took Close Range as our 6th level Magus Arcana (which we damn well should, all the good high level spells are ranged touch attacks) then we get to do silly things at this point like delivering Disintegrate with the same round as our attack pattern. Along the way we got +10 Strength from Dragon Disciple and Form of the Dragon so we hit like a g&~!#$n bus.

Rule #1: Beg, borrow, and steal everything you possibly can to make your campaign easier to generate

If I was building a unique Black Dragon I would start with an existing black dragon and tinker with the ability scores present. For instance, with an Adult Black Dragon I'd start by rounding the stats up. Then I'd push the HP higher, probably 75% or maybe even 90% depending on the party. From there, you can tinker with feats or slas. If I was really feeling fancy, I'd add in some class levels. Swap his wisdom over the Charisma and give him three levels of Anti-paladin and a conductive amulet of mighty fists to let him channel touch of corruption through his melee attacks and force saves.

Sure, a Magus is pretty easy to understand. Their main gimmick is that they are basically spellswords. They can wear armor, cast spells, and channel their spells through their melee attacks. The Magus has better BAB growth, so we don't need to dip to boost our chance to hit, Magus has more HP than a sorcerer so again we don't need to boost it, the magus can cast spells while wearing armor so we don't need to take levels of Monk, and the Magus relies heavily on its spells to augments its melee damage so we want as many spellslots as we can get our hands on.

The short answer is: No, we don't really want to dip. We do not gain nearly as much from doing so as the Sorcerer build.

ElterAgo wrote:
ShroudedInLight wrote:


First level is a level in Sorcerer, used to make it our favored class ...
I can't remember ever seeing a requirement that your first level has to be your favored class. If it is true, could you tell me where it says that?

Sure I...oh, thats crazy. I thought...well, neato. Good to know you can just declare any class your favored class even without a level in it, which seems weird. Guess its like a wish fullfillment thing where little elves dream of being a Wizard when the grow up even when they spend their first few levels into Rogue.

benwin007 wrote:
I want to be a brick sh*& house a beastly dragon who if needs to cast buff spells for himself or blow stuff up pending on the situation.

Yeah, I suggest the Eldritch Scion route then. Just straight ES 6/Dragon Disciple 10 (Again, make sure to enter Dragon Disciple at level 7 so we keep our progression steady) is plenty of murder potential with a minimum of dips. Just straight dragon goodness. Grab Natural Spell Combat as your Arcana at level 3 to ensure you can use your claws to deliver spells and go to town.

Its not just the combat bonuses and HP you get from going to DD10, or the extra 30ft flight/+2 AC/Bloodline Feat/2 free bloodline spells from progressing your bloodline, and its not even the favored class bonus handing you four free high level spells known. Instead, going EK means you never learn 8th level spellcasting because you sacrifice a level of spellcasting upon entering the class. That is the real reason I'd suggest avoiding EK. In exchange all you get is a little bit of extra HP, +2 BAB, and an additional iterative attack you'll never use because at max level you'll spend every single fight as a Dragon.

If you really want to go for the Spellblade aspect of being an Eldritch Knight with the might of a Dragon Disciple, you're better off going as an Eldritch Scion Magus. Lots of viable builds there, including just going straight ESM 10/DD 10 which leaves you with 14 BAB and 6th level spellcasting instead of 8th level spellcasting. The benefits include, however, gaining access to wearing armor while spellcasting, the ability to take Mage Armor at level 1 without regrets, and being able to channel magical energy through your natural attacks for some sick damage (take Natural Spell Combat with claws as your selected weapons so you can still spell combat as a dragon). Part of the capstone is wasted, sadly as you will already possess blindsense 60ft by then. Losing spell levels hurts the magus more than the sorcerer, interestingly, but you can still dip around if you care to do so. My advice, if you dip at all, is the Two Level Dip.

The Two Level Dip:
- The Two Level Dip costs the magus 0 spell casting levels with Magical Knack BUT does cost them two levels of spell slots, a Magus Arcana, 1 point from our Eldritch Pool, and counting as a 5th level Fighter for feats. What we gain from this dip is increased tankyness with two levels of Paladin to get Divine Grace, Lay on Hands, and Smite Evil. We can cast spells in light armor so being a Monk is kinda meh. Since we are a Magus, we specialize in touch spells and can skip out on Precise Shot so we can choose a Paladin Archetype other than Divine Hunter though its still probably the best one around.

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I'd like to think that upon seeing a creature eat another person, assuming a middle ages mindset, the typical response would be to destroy it.

Like if I walk in on a Dragon chowing down on a pile of corpses, my first response isn't "Excuse me, sir, did you kill these people you are eating? Please don't lie, I need to know whether or not you are merely starving or I should beat you unconscious and bring you to trial. Oh, you just found these corpses? Excellent. Would you like my entire satchel of rations or for me to find you a new source of meat? Perhaps a local farmer would sell you cows at 50gp a head?"

The response is "The dragon has a taste for human flesh, for the slaughter of these citizens I sentence you to death. Anything to say in your defense before I strike you down?"

Your build looks similar to mine, though I prefer going for all 10 levels of Dragon Disciple.

Stats: We want charisma really high, dexterity really high, strength and constitution decently high, and Int/Wisdom are stats we can safely keep low. I prefer to have higher Intelligence than Wisdom on this character, as our Will Save will be swole, but its up to you. If I was going to spitball, 13, 18, 14, 10, 7, 18 for a 25 point buy if you are going Aasimar (Plumekin) or 13, 18, 14, 10, 7, 16 if you are going human. The extra bit of Dexterity is going to help us a ton early on.

First level is a level in Sorcerer, used to make it our favored class (we want this for endgame if we go human). We grab our basic kit, Shield, Expeditious Retreat/Enlarge Person, and the Cantrip associated with our Draconic bloodline (Ice, Acid, or Electricity are best because it lets us use our cantrip in place of our crossbow and do better with it most of the time). We want Weapon Finesse as our feat so we can rely on our dexterity to carry our attack rolls for a while.

Second level is Scaled Fist Monk, we grab Dragon Style because its hysterical later on. Now we can flurry of blows, and we're damn hard to hit.

Third and Fourth levels are Divine Hunter Paladin, we want our Divine Grace, a few uses of Lay on Hands to sustain us, and cheating Precise Shot as a bonus feat is just the icing on the g$*%&@n cake. Our 3rd level feat is free, so pick up something fun. Use this feat to grab Favored Prestige Class.

Fifth Level is tricky one because can't become a Dragon Disciple until 6th level at the earliest and its a bit better to time it as our 7th level. This is why I actually have come to like a second level of Monk, it gives us a Bonus Feat, some more BAB, and Evasion which will come in handy later on down the line. We grab Dragon Ferocity so our punches will hit like bricks.

Sixth level is a Sorcerer level, it feels kinda bad as we could go into Dragon Disciple right here but timing our presteige into DD at level 7 makes our feats like up better. This level is pretty dead, it'll feel bad to play but it makes the next level amazing.

Seventh level is Dragon Disciple 1 and its amazing. We get Mage Armor online, our armor and energy resistance go up, we take prestigious spellcaster and are suddenly in business. Our "dead" levels of Sorcerer at 11 and 15 now line up perfectly with levels at which we acquire feats. This means that we get 10 caster levels out of Dragon Disciple without ever experiencing a weird lopsided progression.

This progresses us all the way to Level 16 just building up Dragon Disciple. If we took Magical Knack way back when then our Caster Level is now 14 and our BAB is +12. Our Bloodline is at level 12, and frankly at this point we want more Bloodline and Spell Progression. Another 4 levels of Sorcerer to finish our career to level 20 give us a BAB of +14 (1 short of a full 3/4th caster) and a whopping 18 levels of sorcerous spellcasting (albiet only 16 levels of Sorcerous spell choices). This means we trade 1 BAB for 2 levels of spellcasting, HOT DAMN. Additionally, this is where being a human REALLY shines through, as we use our Favored Class Bonus on these last 4 levels to grab extra spells giving us +1 5th, +2 6th, and +2 7th level spells learned ontop of what we should normally possess.

Antipaladins LOVE conductive weapons

At level 9th, an Antipaladin imposes a -2 penalty to saving throws and another -4 penalty to saves against fear. Enemies normally immune to fear are not immune, meaning an Antipaladin can slap someone with Frightened at a saving throw made at -6 for only 2 uses of Touch of Corruption. Combine this with another fear effect (like Cornugon Smash) and you've got them Panicked. If the Fearmonger archetype worked you could theoretically cause people to Cower on the spot.

Of course, if specializing into fear isn't your goal, the Antipaladin can start casting BESTOW CURSE on successful melee attacks with a conductive weapon. Admittedly the Antipaladin has it harder than most since they get a Fortitude save but hooooo boy is this silly when it works. You can also Naueseate creatures at level 9 and thats just removes a threat from the fight completely.

Antipaladins are SILLY with Conductive weapons, and can do some crazy burst damage if you combine it with Channel Smite (weapon damage + 2x Touch of Corruption) if you can afford the crazy cost of 4/touch of corruption. Have a bonded weapon (+2 at level 9), make it Unholy, Anarchic, or Vicious and Keen and just obliterate the target of your ire.

Makes me wish I could cast Sense Vitals and have it apply to Arcane Cannon.

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