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Oh crap, I didn't realize Luck was an Ex....That is truly a shame. No Discordant Voice for Archaeologist, then.

I really don't think Arcane Strike is even worth it if you're not using it the first round of every combat. In theory, you get it 2/3 of the time, in practice, unless your combats always go in round multiples of 3, it'll feel more like 1/2 the time.

I mean, let's compare the numbers. AS gives +1 damage, +2 at 5th level, +3 at 10th level. Compare to Weapon Focus (a feat NO ONE will claim is uber good). It gives +1 to hit, all the time. That +1 to hit is worth +2 damage (power attack conversion, and just generally the rule for valuing to hit bonuses at 2x what a damage bonus is worth since you need to hit to do damage at all), so AS isn't even outright surpassing the mediocre WF feat until freaking 10th level! And that's assuming you actually use it every round, which you won't be.

I'd say just drop AS. The one major benefit at low levels is overcoming DR x/magic, but that should be an uncommon need, and scrolls of magic weapon are cheap.

As for other feats....every bard's 11th level feat should be Discordant Voice. :D

EDIT: Most people take Eldritch Heritage for a familiar and later an improved familiar from Arcane bloodline, which is totally worth it. Shares your skill ranks and can use wands if you invest in UMD. I also like Marid bloodline. The initial benefit is pretty worthless sadly, but the 11th level Imp. Eldritch Heritage lets you nab Water's Fury, an unlimited use line area of effect attack for untyped d6 / 2 levels damage and moderate duration blinding if the foe(s) fail a reflex save. Because how often are save-or-sucks based off reflex, really? (Answer: All the damn time once Dazing Spell is affordable, but....meh). Makes a great spammable ranged attack, but you have to wait a super long time for the payoff.

N. Jolly wrote:

3. Alchemist get the only two things that make poisons semi viable, Poison Conversion and Celestial Poison: Being able to make things into inhaled poisons is the only viable method of raising DC, which unless you're using 100 GP or lower poisons, is going to get expensive fast. Celestial Poison at least lets you use these on fiends and such (undead don't breathe), so that by a certain level you're not worthless on your specialty, and these still don't work on others.

They also get Sticky Poison, which can easily cut the price per injury poison delivery to 1/5 the normal amount or thereabouts (actual reduction depends on Int mod), making the rogue player's schtick almost approaching cost-viable.

Not to mention Alchemists also get the ability to create poisons and apply them to a weapon MUCH faster than the rules normally allow, and Poison Use and Poison save bonuses (later immunity) and a good base fort save. Alchemist is just....soooooo much better at this. As well he should be, poison is pretty specifically within the alchemist/apothecary type tropes.

One thing though...rogue can get poison conversion, too. Well, it's effectively the same thing. Requires a skill check but also comes 3 levels earlier than poison conversion for alchemist:


Master Poisoner (Ex)

At 3rd level, a poisoner can use Craft (alchemy) to change the type of a poison. This requires 1 hour of work with an alchemist’s lab and a Craft (alchemy) skill check with a DC equal to the poison’s DC. If successful, the poison’s type changes to contact, ingested, inhaled, or injury. If the check fails, the poison is ruined. The poisoner also receives a bonus on Craft (alchemy) skill checks when working with poison equal to 1/2 her rogue level.

This ability replaces trap sense.

Arachnofiend wrote:

The problem isn't the fact that the Alchemist is too good, it's that the Rogue is bad. Poison is a terribly suboptimal strategy; it's only workable as an Alchemist, and even then it's not one of the better Alchemist builds.

I'd personally recommend the Rogue just build a different character, but if they're dead set on poison then they should rebuild into a Vivisectionist Alchemist; they'd still have sneak attack and can flavor it as being virtually the same character, just with a little bit more magic. I'd recommend they check up this guide for advice on putting together the character.

This. Not only is the problem that the Rogue is bad.... The alchemist also happens to be a MUCH better class for poisoning, if the alchemist isn't outshining the rogue at that particular niche, it's solely because he's chosen not to invest in it at all. Not that I blame him...poison sucks...

So yeah, rebuild as another alchemist if he really likes poison. Get Sticky Poison and Poison Conversion ASAP (level 6, I think) and combine with the inherent class features to poison more quickly. Find creative conversions, like "inhaled drow poison."

I don't know why you only get one slam, it seems pretty dumb to me. But it's the rule. You should have the other hand free to use a shield or whatever since you're not using it to attack.

If it were up to me, you'd just get 2 slams and the damage would drop by one die size if two slams proved "too good."

As I understand it, Slam can only be taken once per pair of limbs, but is not actually using both limbs. It is not, for example, getting 1.5x str to damage and triple power attack like a single natural weapon or manufactured weapon wielded in two hands gets.

As for Reach evo with held weapons...I think it would apply for a weapon held in the specific limb that has reach, but would not work for a 2H weapon (since then one of the limbs does not provide the reach for it). By strict RAW, it might not work at all, but that's how I'd handle it.

In any case, more reach is a big advantage and the evo is still very very low-priced. Even if you can only take it one time it's a great deal for threatening a bigger area. You can still enlarge person the eidolon to potentially give it more reach, too. Plus the size evolutions.

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Monk will still suck in a high point buy game, but not as badly, so it's definitely a step in the right direction. Hell, it's a really dull and boring way to "fix" the class that still doesn't accomplish its goal, but you could just award +1 to all six stats for each level in the monk class you take and the class still wouldn't be any better than middle tier.

(It's true, monk doesn't have to suck any more. But that requires playing it in a way that doesn't feel like the normal monk type character -- as an archer, or lance charger, or so forth. In armor if possible. Or by finding tricks to infinitely generate ki. If you just want to be a guy who punches and kicks. runs fast, has good defenses, and is supposedly good at mage're going to have a bad time.)

CWheezy wrote:

They took back the free action nerf.

Gun rules aren't broken anyhow

They only took it back because of massive backlash. The same reason they went back on the flurry of blows nerf. They *really* wanted those things to become RAW, I give them no credit for failing to achieve their evil ambitions.

And yes, gun rules are, but that's getting really off-topic.

It used to be even more different. In 3E, Monk simply got the bonus to speed, and Barb was still restricted to adding it just to land speed. So you pop a Fly spell on a level 20 monk, and she's flying at speed 120. But PF nerfed that away...

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This pisses me off. The only thing broken about Paragon Surge was using it to spont. cast entire spell lists on a whim. Using it as intended to simply get whatever feat you need at the moment (ad qualify for) was fine and not in need of fixing. Instead, they left that Energy Attunement feat in for a handy loophole and nerfed the spell to hell for gish/martial types trying to use it.

All they had to do was say, "You cannot gain spells known through use of this spell" and it'd have been fine. Ugh, this reeks of when they realized the gun rules were broken and rather than nerf guns, decided to nerf free actions in general.

And the tin foil hat guy is on to something. This nerf makes the Arcanist look more appealing. It also makes the Brawler's spontaneous grabbing of a fighter feat a bit more unique and special. It really does seem like some of these nerfs are driven by the desire to make the new classes more appealing.

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There are options in D&D 3E if you can use them. It had nice prestige classes and items for throwers, and its version of Far Shot was much more thrower-friendly, too.

Check out Bloodstorm Blade. It's a 10 level class, but people generally only took 4 levels of it for the abilities to treat (for 1 round as a swift action) thrown attacks as melee (so you can 2H power attack, make weapon-based combat maneuvers from range, etc...) and the ability to instantly regain the weapon after each attack, allowing for full attacks with the same weapon. The other 6 levels are actually also pretty decent, but 3E was nice to martials and had lots of good options for them, so most people preferred 5 levels in Master Thrower or whatever to 6 more in BB.

Hero Lab is not a valid source for rules interpretations.

And that's just not true, they're both favored terrain bonuses.

Yeah, you have to find a creature type that's only in one terrain type naturally so there can be no argument. That's a good example. I used to joke, "finally, a reason to take FE on Humanoids (gnolls)!" (since that's GOT to be the most narrow, specific, useless FE choice there is) But...iirc they hail from more than one terrain type. Stupid worthless gnolls, can't provide one decent reason to hate them.

TGMaxMaxer wrote:
:P ..... It's definitely been around a while since this was a 6 month thread necro.

Yes, it's been known for quite a long time. And I'm sure I wasn't the first to notice, either.

HW in a game with limited terrain types can be amazing, it's long been the only noncaster Prestige Class actually worth taking levels in, though I think recently there were one or two others added that don't suck. Or at very high levels, a wand of instant enemy (I learned about this more recently; DO NOT give up favored enemy for an archetype!) means you pwn any solo boss. Instant Enemy will make it count as your FE for all purposes....including its native terrain type. Cha-ching!

Samasboy1 wrote:

Well, with Boots of the Earth now coming out in ISG, I wonder if anyone has changed their mind about the balance of this feat?

(or the cost of an unlimited CLW wand)

Wow, that's like the best of both worlds. Before the argument was "cost of wands of CLW vs. having the extra feat not spent on Glorious Heat to save money w/ an item creation feat." Now, you can take the best item creation feat in the game and right from level 3 make these boots for only 2500 gp, and then go on to make all sorts of other stuff at half cost.

K177Y C47 wrote:
Well if.want to go to the whole rage thing, there is the Ragechemist.

I haven't followed the Hulk comics much, but was there really a time that some people threw rocks at Hulk for half a minute and that induced him into a coma for over an hour?

If 6th level casters aren't banned, I'd go with Summoner or Synthesist Summoner for sure. Extremely powerful and well rounded, and doesn't need magic items much. Alchemist would also be pretty solid.

You're going to need healing, so someone should probably play Paladin (but neither of you want to) or Inquisitor. Or both play Synthesists and use Lesser Restore Eidolon as your healing.

If you can't have any spells at all...that's really rough. You really can't afford to get hit much at all and you need to kill things dead quickly. I'd suggest an archer ranger (take trapper or skirmisher to get rid of the spellcasting) and a Zen Archer monk, both picking up the Target of Opportunity teamwork feat as soon as possible, and just try to shoot everything to death. If you do want a melee type, your only decent options are either Invulnerable Rager Barbarian (go with the superstitious rage power have no friendly spells to get anyway) or Lore Warden Fighter that's focused on reach-tripping.

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Since we're still on the topic of Powerful/Deadly Sneak and how bad they suck...

Check out this 3E feat.

Not how it does not require full attacking, nor incurs any penalty on your attack rolls. Also note how it just straight up lets you reroll (so instead of a 2 or 3, you could potentially get a 4, 5, or 6, too) though you only can reroll once (even if it's another 1).

It's pretty much just plain better than the rogue talents and has no possible drawback at all, at worst it just does nothing.

People *still* didn't take it. It was considered a subpar feat. I've played at least a dozen rogues between campaigns and one shots in 3E, and I never took it, nor did I ever see anyone else. It's just...underwhelming.

Of course, 3E had much better feats for martials in general (pathfinder had to balance "broken" things like that, you know), so that was part of it. In any case...if you're looking for a quick hotfix for the rogue talents...just replace both of them with Deadly Precision.

Snake Style is a crutch and not worth it, especially to a bard -- wis is their dump stat.

In any case, DD Bard's defenses are fine at low levels (dex ~ 18 and chain shirt, possibly Dodge). Later on, they can get Osyluth Guile, too.

But in general, feats are better spent on offense and money on defense. +1 armor is 1000; +1 deflection is 2000; +1 natural armor is 2000; +1 insight AC (iuon stone) is 5000; +1 luck AC (+2 with fate's favored trait) is about 5000... You get the point. Tons of crap adds to AC and stack together, and as long as you diversify across items, you can get a lot of AC bang for your buck and avoid the exponential price increases of higher bonuses.

Meanwhile, feats for offense and defense tend to be priced more evenly (feat for +1 AC or feat for +1 to hit) and there's some real gems for offensive feats, like Enforcer.

And since this thread has been necro'd....

Crane Wing sucks now, it's not worth it, especially when you're actually paying all four feats for it on your own. Don't take it or any of its pre-reqs (well, Dodge for Osyluth Guile is still ok). Flagbearer is the only remaining decent option for your "can't have a weapon or shield" hand I'm aware of.

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It's not scary, and the game should dramatically pare back all the stupid personal range buffs. Being able to share more buffs with the weakest classes in the game isn't bad for the game, quite the opposite.

Also: Mage armor is pretty great for a wildshaping druid, too, until he can afford Wild armor.

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Ok, let's ignore the comparisons in DPR to power attack for whatever reason. Let's look at *just* the DPR of Powerful Sneak itself.

As others have shown, it adds a paltry +0.167 damage per SA die on average. But it *also* inflicts a -2 to hit which means, unless you only miss on a 1-2 or only hit on a 19-20 (which, if anything other than a very rare situation, means you've got other problems / fights are so easy you can afford to make bad decisions), powerful sneak means you're hitting 10% less often, which means you're effectively doing 10% less damage. That's a loss of 0.35 damage per SA die (1d6 average is 3.5), already about DOUBLE the bonus damage you're getting! And that's ignoring the 10% hit to base weapon damage, strength and enhancement bonuses (if any), other random damage boosts like bardic music, etc...

"But I don't care about theory-crafted averages, I never do 12.167 damage in a real game!"

Right you are, Pathfinder is a game of absolutes. Either you hit or you miss. The monster is downed or up and trying to kill you. This is why powerful sneak is even worse than painted above. Because you're not "just" going to do 10% less damage consistently. You're going to occasionally just miss entirely and do *no damage*. Quite likely (since it was a sneak attack), the damage lost making a difference in whether the monster gets another turn to ream the party or not. On the other hand, since the talent just converts 1's to 2's, it's only ever going to add a few points of damage in the "ideal" case where you roll incredibly poorly. In which case, your damage will still end up pretty low and the monster will likely still be up.

"But I don't trust math at all, I hates the maths!"

Well, then you're beyond reason and I could care less about convincing you. But I will still refute your arguments, for the sake of other people who may read this thread and can actually be swayed by logic, rather than let them be duped into thinking this is actually a good rogue talent instead of the massive trap that it actually is.

And Deadly Sneak is also bad, just less bad than Powerful Sneak, and not worth paying two talents for even if your non-SA damage is so non-existent that Deadly Sneak manages to break even on gain vs. loss, which it probably won't for you.

Yeah, Zen Archer is good the first 6 levels, then it begins to peter out quickly. After level 8, all you have to really look forward to is Abundant Step and some Qinggong ki powers, until level 17 and Ki Focus bow suddenly means you can full attack with a stunning arrow, a serenity arrow, a punishing arrow, and a perfect strike arrow. All in the same turn, once per day per monk level. That's a biiiiig level gap that most campaigns never cross.

So, assuming you'll never see level 17 or won't see much of it, I always advise dumping Zen Archer after 6 levels, and coming back for 7-8 once you have enough BAB built up for the 2nd flurry attack at -5 to hit can reliably land.

Good candidates for multiclassing?
Fighter (Weapon Master for faster access to gloves of dueling, or Lore Warden's just the best fighter archetype) is always solid.
Inquisitor offers Wisdom synergy, though it'll compete like crazy for those swift actions.
I've heard some people do 3 levels of Zen Archer for wis to attack, then go Sorcerer w/ Empyreal bloodline to be wis-based casting, and into Eldritch Knight and/or Arcane Archer. Not my cup of tea, but I suppose it works.
Ranger is a pretty similar class chassis, and would combine decently, though the bonus feats will not be too useful by the time you enter.
Something really different would be a (Mindchemist) Vivisectionist Alchemist. Get sneak attack, infusions, and a cognatogen to boost Wis.
Horizon Walker can be interesting...
If psionics is available, Psychic Warrior and Soulknife (or rather, Soulbolt / Soul Archer) combine well, though Soulknife kinda obsoletes a bunch of Zen Archer's benefits anyway.

Azullius Koujou wrote:


I'd like to take the barkskin, but won't it become worthless due to magic items granting better later?

Looks like a nice feat, though I'd have to be able to cast arcane spells... Any class/archtype that grant monk lvls as well as arcane casting?

Sounds interesting, I haven't yet decided where to spend my gold.
I've found a "keen composite longbow+2 str" on another character, would an item like that be worth getting and could it be upgraded?
(Ideal for me is a +3 str bow)

my ability scores are:

str 16
dex 14
con 12
int 12
wis 18
cha 5

Barkskin later on just saves you money. Still better than the stuff you give up for it. I have a guide for Qinggong if you want. True Strike has less value to a zen archer, though... I rated it well for its use on combat maneuvers and the fact that you can take Quicken SLA feat on it later.

As for Arcane Strike, the Tiefling SLA qualifies you for it. Note that as a swift, you can't use it and a ki point for an extra attack, so you'll probably only be using it 1/2 or 2/3 (depending on how long your combats go) of the combat rounds. Still decent at least.

You can upgrade gear; keen wouldn't be one of the things I'd want on a bow, but it's not horrible. Just slap Adaptive on it for 1000 gp. I'm not sure if you can upgrade the str rating, but you should just use Adaptive anyway.

Stats look good.

Sir Thugsalot wrote:

-- Don't forget the Adaptive property for your bow

I'm guessing he has a CHA-penalty with an oni-spawn, so Dangerously isn't so good. Wisdom in the Flesh isn't that useful to monks since they have all the non-rogue physical stats except for the DEX-based fly. Fate's Favored is hard to make pay off (how does Zen reliably acquire a luck bonus prior to having 20k spare cash laying around?). Defensive Strategist has some comes down to how much you worry about being flat-footed in surprise rounds (which shouldn't be that often for Zens). Lessons of Chaldira is banned (as of 2012, anyway) in PFS.

Absolutely, Adaptive property is important for all archers, even if only to protect against a slight loss of str (if you lose even +1 worth of your amount, you're now not syched with the rating on the bow and *also* eat a -2 penalty to hit) and not because you're getting strength buffs. Bracers of Falcon's Aim and getting Gravity Bow from...somewhere...are also good spell/equip items to aim for.

Fair enough, Dangerously Curious takes a while to accumulate the +19 bonus to be worth it. There is also Pragmatic Activator to use Int instead of Cha for UMD; might be better than +1 trait bonus and +3 class skill from dangerously curious.
Wisdom in the Flesh: You can use it to make Acrobatics wis-based, but since it's already a class skill, the best use is for Disable Device, if you wish to be the party "rogue."
Fate's Favored: The Jingasa of the Fortunate Soldier is like 5000 gp and gives +1 luck to AC and a 1/day crit negation, iirc. Even for just another +1 AC, it's a decent trait. Once you can afford the luck stone, it becomes great. Again...not all the examples are good for a low level game.
There's other great traits, I was just listing some off the top of my head.

Sir Thugsalot wrote:

I'd do...

traits: Honored Fist of the Society (if PFS),
01 [Precise Shot], Noble Scion: Narikopolus
02 Deflect Arrows*
03 Weapon Focus:Longbow
05 Deadly Aim (now you take it, after blinging up attack-bonus)

Equipment: adaptive (+1000) greenwood (+150) or whipwood (+500) composite longbow STR+X (+X00), Fortifying Stone (1000)

(*An extremely underrated feat, as it de-facto scales with level since enemy attacka will increase in damage; as your AC tends to lag and you never use Ki for AC -- and given you're more likely to be targeted by ranged attacks then your high-AC melee or hiding/invisible caster allies -- you need this.)

Zen Archer gets Weapon Focus at level 2 as a bonus feat. As for Deflect just doesn't come up that often in my experience. And you can get it packaged w/ Snatch Arrows if you just wait till level 10... In a game where enemy archers are common, it's much better.

I do wish it was more tied to the number of spells and level of spells on the target. My biggest issue w/ Reciprocal Gyre is that it has the exact same nasty status effect and duration whether you have a enlarge person and nothing else active, or if you can form the entire alphabet with all your active spells. And really, it's the status effect that's the worst part of it, though I have had characters who would eat the entire 25d12 damage given their prodigious amount of buffs.

If you can use the Local feat Noble Scion (not the one on d20pfsrd it removed it for reasons I do not fathom; check archives of nethys), there is an option for house...Narikopolus (spelling?) that gives +2 damage with a bow rated to your strength and can only be taken at level 1. It makes a good level 1 Zen Archer feat if you can get it. Otherwise... It gets tougher. Perhaps get a style feat, or work towards one you like. Not many are useful to a zen archer (crane was, but since the crane wing nerf, it is not), I guess Monkey Style is decent (can't shoot a bow while prone, after all). Also consider Additional Traits, since many traits are better than half a feat (or even a whole feat), so another 2 of them is handy. Stuff like Dangerously Curious, Lessons of Chaldira, Defensive Strategist, Wisdom in the Flesh, Fate's Favored... Most of those are religion traits and you can only pick one of them, though.

Level 3 is Deadly Aim.
Level 9 is Clustered Shots, if it's not your level 7 (the only time you can possibly use it, you have full BAB and thus meet the +6 requirement)...

If there's another archer in the party, Target of Opportunity is a great teamwork feat. It won't let you use ki the next round for an extra shot, but on the other gives you an extra shot w/0 having to spend ki. Lookout is also a good teamwork feat if you can coordinate with the other player.

Your bonus feats are pretty simple until level 10.
1: Precise Shot
2: Point Blank Shot (unless you took it at 1)
6: Improved Precise Shot
10: Imp. Crit, Snatch Arrows (good mainly b/c it gives Deflect as well for free), Parting Shot, Pinpoint Targeting, and Shot on the Run are all equally mediocre to decent.

Do not bother with the Snap Shot line unless your DM houserules them. It requires burning two completely worthless feats and doesn't pay off till BAB +9 (Improved Snap Shot),'ll have to wait for longer than ranger and fighter despite being the only one with a similar class feature already.

I never even considered that walking around with my sling pre-loaded was an issue. Certainly not in a dungeon, if not for 8 hours of overland travel. Do people have issue with pre-loaded crossbows too?! You can loosely wrap the straps around the sling pocket enough to secure it if you keep it on your person in a manner where it won't be tumbling around much. Seems like a ridiculously trivial thing to not allow "because realism."

Yeah, of course it's not as helpful to visually obvious buffs. But even then, it might not be so easy for the enemy to figure out. My robed dude is flying, for example. Is it Fly? Is it Overland Flight? Is it the Flight hex, and thus not even dispellable? Without detect magic / arcane sight to examine, it might well be hard to tell.


Dump charisma to the moon, try to keep str at 10-12 if you're not starting at level 3; wisdom is still handy for will and perception but you need no more than 12 at most.
If doing Hexcrafter as well as blade bound, consider making Int highest priority. Otherwise...while normally Id say a caster should be maxing his casting stat as much as possible...Magus is a caster who hits things w/ full AC with his spells and not hitting means not delivering the spell (at least it stays held to deliver on a later attack), so dex takes slightly higher priority. But...Hexcrafter has spells and Slumber...he wants Int highest.

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Yeah, it works for CMB. But sadly most maneuvers are limited to one size larger or only work on foes w/ manufactured weapons. The only real option for such a character is grapple, which PF actually removed all size restrictions on, oddly enough. You could hypothetically make a pixie that suplexes the tarrasque.

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PF has opened up an "interesting" new tactic of using "buffer buffs." Note how the dispel order goes by CL, not spell level. Most spells will often be from the same source (you?) and thus, same CL. This can be exploited at high levels when you've got a dozen long duration buffs and some short range ones running...

Say you've got some specific, higher level buffs you'd really not like to lose, that are of utmost importance to you. You can use the rules for intentionally casting at a lower CL than you have (as long as it's high enough to cast the spell) to cast them a 1 CL below your max! Why do this? Because then you can put up all your low level buffs (that can be cheaply replaced with pearls of power) at max CL, and bam! Unless the enemy knows which buffs to specifically target, the insignificant buffs act as a buffer for the important ones!

I've done this before in high level PF games; it really is quite effective at lowering your risk to dispels. I throw up completely pointless 1st level or even 0 level spells for no other reason than to act as a buffer, it's hilarious.

Yeah yeah, ring of counterspells. But that'll only save you once, DM could be persistent so it helps to have extra contingencies. I had both.

It wasn't any help in 3E; dispel can just take a crack at every spell you have to try and get rid of it. Also, Reciprocal Gyre existed to punish mages for being heavily buffed with spells. I highly encourage porting the spell over to PF, btw.

Since this has been necro'd, I'll repeat myself. Once more, for emphasis:

StreamOfTheSky wrote:
In any case, this is ONLY an issue for the Magus, so while I agree primary casters are quite powerful and don't mind harsh rules readings to nerf them... Wizards don't care about this tail nonsense anyway. Their hands are totally free between the mithral buckler strapped to their arm and the complete lack of need for a weapon. Trying to come down against using the tail for rods doesn't actually hurt the powerful casters. It would just hurt the Magus, which is a perfectly middle tier, reasonably balanced fighter/mage hybrid class.

PF did buff regular dispel to scale all the way up to +20 (in 3.5, dispel magic capped at +10 and greater went to +20....that was basically the only difference between the two spells, in fact), but other than that, it's all nerf.
You can't do area dispel with the regular version, only greater dispel now. Then there's the fact that 3.5 dispel rolled against and potentially dispelled ALL active spells on a target. The PF version checks each effect until you dispel one of them, then ends. Even the Greater version hard caps you to one dispelled effect per 4 CL.

That's a pretty hefty nerf.

3.5 Dispel Magic wrote:

Targeted Dispel

One object, creature, or spell is the target of the dispel magic spell. You make a dispel check (1d20 + your caster level, maximum +10) against the spell or against each ongoing spell currently in effect on the object or creature. The DC for this dispel check is 11 + the spell’s caster level. If you succeed on a particular check, that spell is dispelled; if you fail, that spell remains in effect.

PF Dispel Magic wrote:
Targeted Dispel: One object, creature, or spell is the target of the dispel magic spell. You make one dispel check (1d20 + your caster level) and compare that to the spell with highest caster level (DC = 11 + the spell's caster level). If successful, that spell ends. If not, compare the same result to the spell with the next highest caster level. Repeat this process until you have dispelled one spell affecting the target, or you have failed to dispel every spell.
PF Greater Dispel Magic wrote:
Targeted Dispel: This functions as a targeted dispel magic, but it can dispel one spell for every four caster levels you possess, starting with the highest level spells and proceeding to lower level spells.

Don't forget to use a lesser rod of Bouncing Spell in case the initial Murderous Command target saves. ;)

Confusion, due to how it works, is exponentially better when it hits multiple foes nearby, as they will likely start killing each other. On one enemy, it's much less effective.

Confusion bomb used to trade needing to hit touch AC and being single target for not having a save. While as the spell hits a radius. Now, you need to hit *and* have them fail a save, and you still have to toss out a bunch of them before you match the effect of the actual spell.

Yeah, I'll pass.

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Glorious Heat (used with orisons like Spark) was never broken. Infinite out of combat healing already exists by level 5, it's called wands of Cure Light Wounds. Someone taking a craft feat (say...wondrous items) instead of GH would have to pay for wands of CLW, but the savings on gear would more than make up for it.

I loved using Glorious Heat with Spark on my Druid. I took out candles and dished out "hippy healing" by lighting them. Way more interesting than poking someone with a wand over and over.

I would be proud of them nerfing a caster thing, is usually the case when they nerf a caster thing, it hurts noncasters more (infinite healing and little to no per day resources means they can actually fight "all day"). The other time they nerf caster stuff is when it's an anti-caster caster thing, like Dispel Magic.

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Hurray, we now have another worthless bomb discovery.


Seriously, though. All discussing the feat on this forum will do is destroy your faith in humanity.

Most of the people on this board either love the feat or figure "rogue sucks, so no one will ever take a feat to shut them down because they're not a threat, ergo the feat is balanced."

It's pretty sickening though, yeah.

Imbicatus wrote:
thorin001 wrote:
First damage roll, not first attack.

That's not what the feat says.


Prerequisites: Str 15, Improved Unarmed Strike, Acrobatics 3 ranks.

Benefit: While using this style, you gain a +2 bonus on saving throws against sleep effects, paralysis effects, and stunning effects. You ignore difficult terrain when you charge, run, or withdraw. You can also charge through squares that contain allies. Further, you can add 1-1/2 times your Strength bonus on the damage roll for your first unarmed strike on a given round.

It says your first unarmed strike on a given round, not your first successful unarmed strike. While it's a reasonable house rule to allow it to apply to the first successful unarmed strike, that is a house rule and not RAW.

You apply it to a damage roll. You do not roll damage unless you hit. If your first unarmed strike of the round misses, it did not have a damage roll to apply the bonus to. So it has to be the first successful unarmed strike, by logic.

How is that so?

FAQ wrote:

Does spell combat count as making a full attack action for the purpose of haste and other effects?

Yes (revised 9/9/13) This is a revised ruling about how haste interacts with effects that are essentially a full attack, even though the creature isn't specifically using the full attack action (as required by haste). The earlier ruling did not allow the extra attack from haste when using spell combat.

Natural Attacks wrote:
Creatures with natural attacks and attacks made with weapons can use both as part of a full attack action (although often a creature must forgo one natural attack for each weapon clutched in that limb, be it a claw, tentacle, or slam). Such creatures attack with their weapons normally but treat all of their available natural attacks as secondary attacks during that attack, regardless of the attack’s original type.

He's not get hand-based attacks like claws since he's using his hands to sword-fight and cast...that's why I'm going with the bite. I'm not even really using it "with spell combat"...I'm using it at the end of my full attack I made as part of spell combat.

As for what I want him to do...I want a competent melee character with various options, less concerned with sheer damage output. The fatigue, demoralize, and rime spell would all be debuffing effects, so they all would fit pretty well.

What if you trapped someone within the area of a cloudkill with Resilient Sphere? The sphere would be filled with the poisonous gas along with the victim, right?

...Sometimes I think certain spell combos should get the [evil] tag even if none of the component spells have it.

There isn't much of a reason, really. In D&D 3E, they recognized this and made the feat Hand Crossbow Focus, which is basically Rapid Reload and Weapon Focus in one feat. Which is nice since crossbow is probably the most feat-heavy weapon in the game.

Also note that Rogues, Drow, and some others get hand crossbow proficiency. Almost everyone also gets light crossbow prof, but there are ways to use it w/o needing to spend a feat on exotic weapon prof.

So, I'm trying to make a Tiefling Hexcrafter Bladebound (and might as well...) Fiend Flayer Magus for a game that's starting at level 2 and going until 7th-9th level. Going Dervish Dance. Given that level range, I'm considering blasphemy and not taking either of the traits that gives -1 spell level, since intensified shocking grasp does nothing till 6th anyway. Taking Scaled Skin, Maw (I assume since spell combat is a full attack again, I can chain the bite to the end), prehensile tail, and vestigial wings variants.

But I am stuck on what to do... One of my traits will be Blade of Mercy, I just like it for thematic reasons for my character. Feats will be Finesse (1st), DD (3rd), and then from 5th on...just Extra Arcana / Extra Hex. Arcana Hexes will probably be Slumber (4th), Flight (5th; feat), Divinatory Strike (6th; it's just too cool not to take), and then maybe Prehensile Hair or one of the arcanas that actually spends pool points.

I'm torn on what to do with my other trait and my 5th level bonus feat, though.

Option 1: Two-World Magic for Touch of Fatigue, to combine w/ spell combat / spellstrike for a nice debuff (it's just nifty...I already have brand for infinite extra attacks) and Enforcer feat.
Option 1a: Bruising Intellect to make intimidate int-based, then Enforcer at 5th level.

Option 2: Either metamagic reducer trait on Frostbite, then Rime Spell at 5th level.

If it matters, I have 25 point but and figure my stats will be Str 12, Dex 18, Con 14, Int 18, Wis 12, Cha 5 after race. I could drop str and wis for less horrible charisma...but I don't think it's worth it, even if it means my intimidate modifier is awful.

Which route should I go?

EDIT: Bonus question! I can't afford a mithral buckler yet, is it worth 5% ASF for +1 AC from a regular masterwork buckler? I'm...really having trouble finding stuff to buy when I can't spend more than 500 gp on any one item. Probably will just get a lot of scrolls of infernal healing and other 1st level spells.

Hmm, this looks promising, too. Psionic Trip, obviously it's from 3rd party psionics. Expend your psionic focus when you trip someone to also throw them a distance away. Best used with Half-Giant, so you count as size large (huge with enlarge person), and Psionic Meditation. Possibly as a Psychic Warrior for Hustle so you can recover the focus as a swift action for 3 power points.

Psionic Bullrush works the exact opposite; when you bull rush someone and expend focus, they also go prone. But since sending someone far with bull rush is hard (winning by another 5 points per 5 ft...) and it doesn't improve at all with level, *and* because trip replaces individual attacks and is weapon-based...I'd go with the former feat route since you actually have both options to choose.

Check out the 3rd party psionics stuff. Soulknife (who doesn't even USE psionic powers unless you take a certain archetype) has a blade skill called Focused Offense. As long as he has psionic focus, he uses Wis for attack *and* damage rolls with his mindblade. Then add in the Soulbolt archetype, which turns the mindblade into a ranged weapon but otherwise works as a mindblade. Two levels of Soulbolt, and you have a ranged attacker getting Wisdom to attack and damage.

leo1925 wrote:
You should tell the ranger's player about the enemies they are going to be facing.

I will also agree with this. It's a significant class feature, and really.. the character lives in the campaign world, he should have some idea of what enemies are common anyway. You can wait till a later level to "reveal" the best one if you must; as long as the one he picks at level 1 is still fairly common, it's not going to waste. If you wait till beyond level 5 to let him discover the most common type of enemy, he'll no longer have a chance to max out that particular favored enemy (at 5th level you get a new one and can add +2 to either the old one or the new one; all FE choices past 5th level miss this +2 so it's impossible for them to ever reach the highest FE bonus you can get w/o retraining).

Why stop at dipping Fighter? :)

I'd do no more than 6 levels of MM Monk and all the rest in Lore Warden to get big bonuses on CMB. The 2nd and 3rd maneuvers in the flurry have utterly staggering penalties anyway.

Ideally, you'd just crack open Tome of Battle from 3E and the entire Setting Sun discipline is judo.

If PF only...I'd try to just fluff something else as "throwing," it'd probably have to be bull rush. The only good bull rushing build, IMO, is to use Shield Slam to get it on every hit, so you'd probably want Ranger 6 for it and shield master. Alternatively, you could go barbarian and take the knockback rage power, but that's only once per round. Might be enough... Then there's maneuver master monk for flurry of maneuvers and some other CMB bonuses. It's not worth taking past level 6, but...neither is the Ranger idea and Barbarian could be dropped even earlier than that. You could also go Synthesist Summoner if Push is an evolution...I forget.
For any build other than the Synthesist, you'd want to eventually find your way into Lore Warden Fighter to rack up big bonuses on combat maneuvers. Between the +2 untyped bonus they get every 4 levels, weapon training and gloves of dueling, and maybe later on even the knowledge check ability.

There is also the Squash Flat feat, which lets you also trip someone when you win the bull rush by 5 or more. That would help to replicate a throw pretty well. You force them to move away from you and send them sprawling to the ground.
Annoyingly, Squash Flat and its pre-req feat require evil deity / Rovagug worship, because as paizo has repeatedly reminded can't learn pragmatic martial techniques without paying lip service to the right god. Try to see if your DM will waive that requirement...

Don't do Ki Throw, though. It's really bad and way too costly in ki...

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