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Hey guys!

So I've been thinking about the Five Man Band plus the Sixth Ranger as a party composition. An easier version of this would be a five man band with an NPC as The Chick.

For those of you whom are unfamiliar with the five man band, it is composed of two characters that are opposites of one another and argue, one extremely smart person, one extremely strong person, and someone who keeps this group from fracturing and/or dying. These characters are:
The Hero.
The Lancer.
The Smart Guy.
The Big Guy.
The Chick.

The Sixth Ranger is a character that joins the Five Man Band and either doubles up on one of the five man band's roles, or is able to partially cover two or more roles in a pinch.

What I was thinking about was intentionally giving each of these roles in the group an attribute requirement:
The Hero: Charisma 15; Dexterity 14; any 13, 12, 10, 8.
The Lancer: Wisdom 15; Dexterity 14; any 13, 12, 10, 8.
The Smart Guy: Intelligence 15; any 14, 13, 12, 10, 8.
The Big Guy: Strength 15; any 14, 13, 12, 10, 8.
The Chick: Dexterity 15; any 14, 13, 12, 10, 8.
The Sixth Ranger: any 14, 14, 14, 12, 12, 7.

In essence, specific positions in the group would fill certain roles in the game.

How I suspect this would play out would be like this:
The Hero: Bard or Paladin/Antipaladin.
The Lancer: Inquisitor or Ranger.
The Smart Guy: Magus or Wizard.
The Big Guy: Barbarian or Fighter.
The Chick: Most Dex Based Classes. Likely an Unchained Rogue.
The Sixth Ranger: Literally anything.

What do you guys think of the idea? It is part of my anti-power-gaming set of ideas.

One of the players in my Sunday game wanted to know if he could use Weapon Finesse for attacks made by his Spectral Hand.

I think he can since the attack is considered a melee touch attack, and the spell grants a +2 bonus to the attack.

Weighing in on it, what do you guys think?

Mark Seifter wrote:
The one that can actually lead to a giant chain (and did against a creature with a similar ability in a game I was playing) is Snake Fang, since unlike Crane Riposte it triggers every time an attack misses. The Snake Fang-er had 11 AoOs up against a foe with infinite AoOs that could make one hit or miss whenever attacked, so the character's first attack turned into a chain of 23 attacks (she also had Crane Riposte which was needed when the enemy was going to hit her once).

This actually works perfectly. Thanks Mark!

Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Taku Ooka Nin wrote:

Hey guys!

What happens if two characters with Crane Wing attack each other in melee?
1) Dude A: Miss.
2) Dude B: Cane Riposte activates, Miss.
Does it end here or go on?
3) Dude A: Crane Riposte activates, Miss.
4) Dude B: Cane Riposte activates, Miss.
3 and 4 repeat until someone hits or someone runs out of AoOs for that round.

I ask because two villain groups that hate each other and work with the PCs in a game of mine are likely to come into conflict with each other. While acting as bosses, it is entirely possible for them to fight each other in some future climaxes.

Crane Riposte only works once per round, because it requires you to either deflect an attack or lose the +4 A.C. In all instances except the first, you have no deflection or A.C. loss.

Looking at it again.

Crane Wing: Benefit: When fighting defensively with at least one hand free, you gain a +4 dodge bonus to AC against melee attacks. If a melee attack misses you by 4 or less, you lose this dodge bonus until the beginning of your next turn.

Unless it misses by 4 or less (4, 3, 2, 1), the bonus remains as it is written on

Crane Riposte:
1) Whenever you deflect an opponent’s attack using Crane Wing or lose the dodge bonus from Crane Wing because an attack missed you by 4 or less, you can make an attack of opportunity against the attacker after the attack misses.

2) In addition, when you deflect an attack using Crane Wing while taking the total defense action, you may make an attack of opportunity against that opponent (even though you could not normally do so while taking the total defense action).

This is a nightmare of writing although not as bad as some stuff from Paizo. Basically part 2 is already included in part 1 with the stipulation that it can activate even while total-defensing. Part 1 basically says that someone has to miss by 4 or less to provoke the AoO.

Basically, both render this feat to be pretty much useless in terms of what I'm looking for. I could always make this into a monster ability instead.

Hey guys!
What happens if two characters with Crane Wing and combat reflexes attack each other in melee?
1) Dude A: Miss.
2) Dude B: Cane Riposte activates, Miss.
Does it end here or go on?
3) Dude A: Crane Riposte activates, Miss.
4) Dude B: Cane Riposte activates, Miss.
3 and 4 repeat until someone hits or someone runs out of AoOs for that round.

I ask because two villain groups that hate each other and work with the PCs in a game of mine are likely to come into conflict with each other. While acting as bosses, it is entirely possible for them to fight each other in some future climaxes.

Heyo guys, I recently stumbled across the Gastalt rules, and they made me think about mixed parties.

How would one run a party of characters when some characters are gastalts, some are non-gastalt, and some are only using NPC classes? Just talking options and theory crafting.

My initial instinct is based on XP progression:
Gastalt—slow progression.
Normal—normal progression.
NPC classes only—fast progression.

My other idea was to adjust pointbuy, but class levels is just plain better (or worse) while not being crippling.

Another idea was to give gastalts the Advanced template in reverse (-4 to all attributes) and give the advanced template to NPC class only characters.

I suppose there could be a Gastalt NPC classes only character that would advance at the same rate as a normal character since -1 from NPC classes only and +1 for Gastalt.

What are you guys' ideas?

Thanks for all of the responses guys!
I found out that the Arcanist can use his pool points to cause Primal Magic events to happen, so I recommended that to him.

The other stuff you guys recommended is also very interesting, so I'll try to implement it. Thanks again.

Hi everyone,
One of my players is absolutely obsessed with the idea of playing a wild-magic oriented class, but he wants to be able to activate wild magic far more often than the currently available Paizo classes.

Does anyone know about any balanced wild-magic (Primal magic) based classes that can trigger wild/primal events a great deal?


Snowblind wrote:
Taku Ooka Nin wrote:
Chess Pwn wrote:

why not just make them a swarm or a "troop?" I'm not sure what what the name is for mass combat stuff.

but you'll need some way to simplify their attacks.

Maybe something like a percentage roll to how much damage they are doing. like the swarms average damage is 15 damage a round.
So if you roll a percentage of 50 then it does 15 damage. 100 is 30 and 25 would be 7. Then have that number modified by how many of the enemy there is. if you have 100 enemies, do a -1 per 5 enemies killed or something.

This way the damage is quick to calculate.

I like it. Another option is to give them a collective damage aura that assumes they are just throwing acid flasks everywhere. If you're within 10 ft or so, you just take auto-damage equal to the group's average damage based on CR, reflex for half or something.
That does have the really shoddy effect of making a bard or a wizard who pumped Dex better than a Fighter in fullplate at surviving groups of enemies.

At higher CRs there are enemies that basically just target AC.

Part of the point is throwing a wrench into how Pathfinder is played. Trying to design it to be interesting.

Chess Pwn wrote:
Taku Ooka Nin wrote:
Chess Pwn wrote:

why not just make them a swarm or a "troop?" I'm not sure what what the name is for mass combat stuff.

but you'll need some way to simplify their attacks.

Maybe something like a percentage roll to how much damage they are doing. like the swarms average damage is 15 damage a round.
So if you roll a percentage of 50 then it does 15 damage. 100 is 30 and 25 would be 7. Then have that number modified by how many of the enemy there is. if you have 100 enemies, do a -1 per 5 enemies killed or something.

This way the damage is quick to calculate.

I like it. Another option is to give them a collective damage aura that assumes they are just throwing acid flasks everywhere. If you're within 10 ft or so, you just take auto-damage equal to the group's average damage based on CR, reflex for half or something.
That's how swarms operate, auto damage.

I know, I was making the concept more swarm-like. I will probably wait until Bestiary 6 for squad rules.

Chess Pwn wrote:

why not just make them a swarm or a "troop?" I'm not sure what what the name is for mass combat stuff.

but you'll need some way to simplify their attacks.

Maybe something like a percentage roll to how much damage they are doing. like the swarms average damage is 15 damage a round.
So if you roll a percentage of 50 then it does 15 damage. 100 is 30 and 25 would be 7. Then have that number modified by how many of the enemy there is. if you have 100 enemies, do a -1 per 5 enemies killed or something.

This way the damage is quick to calculate.

I like it. Another option is to give them a collective damage aura that assumes they are just throwing acid flasks everywhere. If you're within 10 ft or so, you just take auto-damage equal to the group's average damage based on CR, reflex for half or something.

SmiloDan wrote:
Are you going to be pre-rolling attack rolls? Sitting around while the GM rolls 100 attack rolls that miss 90-99% of the time seems kind of boring. There's a reason they made Swarm rules.

Since the range on thrown weapons is 10 ft, I'd probably only have the ones that are within that range attack. To speed things along, I might just go with rolling 1d20. For the next 20, they rolled that number + or - their slot. It would start at -10 and go all the way to +10. The smaller the group size, the lesser the penalty and bonus.

bitter lily wrote:
I hope this is in addition to the normal mix. My fireball sorceress would love facing these guys; our barbarian, much less so.

This is literally the selling point here from a mechanical standpoint. The swarming enemies will have around 3 hp, so a great cleave / cleaving finish build that uses a reach weapon with Lunge is just going to be amazing.

Plus that fireball is going to potentially kill around 50 of them.

Lady-J wrote:
why dont you just ban races with energy resist or tell them they have to trade it out for some other racial ability

I was thinking about this as an option as well. It instantly solves the issue.

Errant Mercenary wrote:
Troop subtype is my suggestion.
I was looking for rules for how to specifically craft these, but I couldn't find any.
Errant Mercenary wrote:
Also, a general tip, always bypassing PCs defenses is not fun for them. Bypass sometimes, yet have most things, even if due to inflation, be stopped, if you look for an epic feel.

One major issue here is that Pathfinder is based on the axiom of monsters coming in small numbers and dealing a lot of damage. This axiom runs with the idea of enemies doing small mounts of damage while there being a lot of them. The average damage for the CR 1/3 enemies is 3 damage. This basically means that anyone with a racial energy resistance to whatever they're using makes them immune to damage (perhaps they start with Acid and switch to Cold or Fire). D&D 5E resolves this problem by making resistances just do half-damage.

Do you know where the rules for creating squads can be found?

Hi everyone,
I'm working on a set of mega-adventures (MAs) that take place in a massive dungeon. Here's the shtick, the game revolves around large groups of enemies that effectively have 1hp and deal chip damage to the PCs with their infinite supply (while they're alive) of acid vials. The one concern I have with these groups that turn into hordes revolves around races with energy resistance.

I have a few potential fixes: 1) the enemies throw Force Vials which deal 1d4 force damage, 2) turn energy resistance into a damage shield similar to the Resist Energy spell where the damage reduction is the Resistance Value, and the damage shield can absorb Resistance Value * Character Level (or total HDs) before failing.

What do you guys think?

In addition to the above, I have some other questions. The general theme of the MAs is that the players are isolated in a strange and unforgiving city. Traveling outside the town is dangerous since all overworld encounters are epic by default and can build on each other (when combat begins, one enemy will spend its turn shooting a firework into the air which calls another epic encounter into the fight which arrives in 1d4 minutes) if the players hang around for too long. On the bright side, the enemies are designed to have high DPR while targeting touch but low HP and defenses.

The idea is that the players can forage for magic items in this abandoned magic city to gear up, take on modules (which tend to be significantly easier than the overworld encounters and have a boss at the end), and help the camp survive while advancing the plot.

I'm trying to associate victory with defeat using mechanics. To that end, all of the enemies drop healing or consumable items when killed, but the healing offered by these items wouldn't necessarily keep up with the damage dealt.

In many ways, I'm building the enemies to circumvent normal AC as much as possible since lower-level enemies tend to struggle with harming higher AC PCs unless they target touch AC.

What do you guys think? Any general tips?

Hey guys,
we found a new GM to reboot our Reign of Winter campaign (we restarted it), and one of the players brought the Gambler (3.5 homebrew) class, and it feels like it has no sense of balance built into it until much later levels. Part of the problem is that the class deal energy damage with all of its attacks.

The Gambler class page.

Doing the math, it seems to have an average DPR that is similar to an archer fighter or Gunslinger, but because it is so poorly written, its DPS could range from low 100s to mid 200s around level 16. All of its attacks also target touch in addition to getting lots of random abilities.

In practice, it seems to be the primary killer, but I also know that when we start running into heavily energy resistant or energy immune monsters, that the class will be trivialized.

What do you guys think about this class?

Ahmadiedie wrote:
She tells me she has too much free time. She wants to play the game in general but she doesn't want to do any homework.

Ok, so with this person, just tell her, "Hey, I have a character in mind that is a fantastic match for you!

Then, proceed to help her make a fighter that is equally good with a cestus and buckler as (s)he is with a longbow.

Now, she doesn't have to think at all and she can more or less attack anything at any time. Easy!

You should endeavor to help her match her skill level with a class that is her speed, and fighters more or less do not require any specialized mastery of the system beyond character creation.


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GM Rednal wrote:
At a guess, he was probably allowed to use the table of alternate abilities in Blood of Angels. One of the options there is a 20-foot fly speed with poor maneuverability.

Pretty much this.

He was chatting with me on Telegram in our group chat (which he hasn't left, yet) and was like, "Man, all I need now is a fly speed." So I told him that if he wanted to, he could choose to take the fly speed instead of his SLA per the chart.
It does say that with GM approval, you can just choose one (but not two).

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Lady-J wrote:
he also tuned the sprites to be abnormal giving them a feat they wouldn't normally posses and used a mechanic that the module probably didn't account for as for the imbalance of casters yes its imbalanced as they are the only ones that can work properly with such abysmally low point buy as for the players loving the game i think they just glossed over the fact that the gm will just kill them 1st chance he gets dude killed a guy like half an hour into the session or so this isn't call of chathulu as for unusual races i don't see any one in the party running any as they are at level one and thus can't really play monstrous races

Actually, the sprites I used were right out of the book and more or less followed the tactics given them by Paizo. Well, when one of them was spotted, she didn't run up and color spray the paladin.


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Lady-J wrote:
10 point buy and no full casters and purposely killing off characters in the first sesion no less how did you manage to get any players in the 1st place? the 10 point buy alone is a turn off then you ban the only type of characters that make it work

I use 15 point buy, actually. The players have the same point-buy at NPCs.

TriOmegaZero wrote:
Taku Ooka Nin wrote:
It ultimately doesn't matter...
Then why argue with my disagreement?

For the sake of argument. You offered a disagreement, and while the outcome doesn't matter, you offered a point of view and both of our understandings of the subject and only be strengthened by argument.

Basically, something can be argued even if it doesn't matter in the end. :)

TriOmegaZero wrote:
Taku Ooka Nin wrote:
Not once he was 90 - 120 feet away from them.
I disagree. Stabbing a downed enemy gives the other enemies time to maneuver against them. He can bleed out just fine on his own, especially with falling damage.

It ultimately doesn't matter, he decided to quit the game the moment he fell unconscious. The environmental conditions meant that the players might have seen the direction he'd flown in, but they would be unlikely to actually pinpoint him, but let's sake for sake of argument that they were able to see him perfectly and had LOS through the trees. Let's reduce the penalty for movement from chest high snow to waist high and just make it difficult (10 movement per 5 feet instead of 20). Lets also say the PCs make their acrobatics checks to full round run. The fastest person would only be able to run 60 ft. in the conditions.

The enemy (I'm trying to avoid spoilers here) would have been able to finish him off no problem. I didn't even factor in the fall damage. Hell, I even ignored the miss chance for his attacks to give him the best shot, but it is what it is.

TriOmegaZero wrote:
Taku Ooka Nin wrote:
Them killing the paladin made more sense to me.
I don't see why. There were still active threats in the area.

Not once he was 90 - 120 feet away from them.

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0o0o0 O 0o0o0 wrote:
Shouldn't the staggered effect have knocked him out of the sky, and accidentally saved him?

He made his save every single time. I was so disappointed. You hear that winter-touched sprites? I am disappointed!

0o0o0 O 0o0o0 wrote:
What sort of Paladin can't go toe-to-toe with a CR 1/3 Fey? Why did the player not just beat the thing up? Iomedae would not be impressed.

The enemies were attacking from about 40 feet up from him and shooting him to death. The idea of him using cover came up. The enemies just relocated to negate his cover, then started shoothing him again.

0o0o0 O 0o0o0 wrote:
(Especially after building such a Mary Sue PC - an Aasimar Paladin with a fly speed at 1st level, really?)

OMG IRK? He's a furry, and basically created his fursona using the Aasimar. He was a horse man with wings. I could have deneighed his character, but he might have whinnyed about it.

0o0o0 O 0o0o0 wrote:
So I get why he'd be upset and he had no way of knowing whether he had a killer or lenient GM at that point.

I'm very "by the books" when it comes to mechanics. I do fun and silly RP, but the mechanics are brutally and the NPCs and Creatures are dangerous.

Granted, if he was fighting normal fey, they probably would have just taken all of his gear, and tied him down Gulliver's Travels style or kidnapped him. Winter-touched fey are EVIL with a capital E. I mean, they just spent a day killing all of the birds they found and making fetishes of them.

Wrath wrote:
I haven't run this campaign, nor sadly have I read it. What level are the characters at this stage. Also, what level are the baddies. I ask this because of the use of detect good and detect evil.

The players are all level 1 by this point. They encounter the following monsters.

3 Winter-touched Fighter 1 Sprites (CR 1/2), forming a CR 2 encounter. Sprites have constant Detect good and Detect evil. Paladins always have an aura.
Wrath wrote:
Both of those only work on things over a certain level I believe (level 5?) It could well be that using that incorrectly actually changed the entire tone of the fight in all honesty.

Clerics and Paladins both start with faint auras, but other divine casters typically don't unless it says they do. Aligned creatures (anything that isn't true neutral) develops a faint aura when it has 4 or more Hit Dice.

Wrath wrote:
Paladin notes there are baddies and responds by scouting ahead. If he couldn't detect them, he wouldn't have been so far ahead when it all went down.

I decided to give the enemies auras so the paladin could see sense where they are and, if he spent 3 rounds concentrating, he could pinpoint each of them.

Wrath wrote:
Pixies are detecting good to find out the goodies are coming. If they cant detect good, they don't respond the same way as well.

Detect good never turns off for the enemies.

Wrath wrote:
... its all on them and their maturity when they walk.

Yup. It might sound cruel, but when someone decides to walk, I do everything in my power to make sure he or she gets all of his or her stuff and is good to go as soon as possible. If someone walks, I'm not going to try to get the person to come back. He or she made a choice, and I'll respect it.

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Lorila Sorita wrote:
I wouldn't say it was unfair, but you were definitely playing a cut throat, no mercy type game. ... They were evil pixies so hunting down and murdering the guy makes sense from a roleplaying perspective.

I love cutthroat games. If you make stupid decisions, you can get isolated and killed very easily, and honestly, you'd have no one to blame but yourself.

Lorila Sorita wrote:
You chased down and murdered a player who was trying his best to flee the encounter, when there was more dangerous targets, and higher priority targets around, that you could have easily switched target to. So you could of definitely went easier on him. If it was me, I would of switch some of the pixies to the other targets but it is what it is.

The sprite that went after the paladin could have decided to attack the party, but he already had his quarry on the ropes. I had two of the pixies quit the field entirely (one was incapped, the other grabbed him and ran), so the other players were probably more dangerous than the paladin.

I even explained the scenario to the Paladin, and by his own words he agreed that, were he in the enemies situation, he would have done the same thing.

Lorila Sorita wrote:
I also disagree when people say the paladin made a bunch of bad choices. He actually made the choices you would expect smart players to make. When he was attacked, he went and hid behind cover and when wounded he retreated. Which is better than most people who often don't use cover very much, and many people do not retreat when wounded.

This completely ignores the "moving away from the other players and isolating himself" parts. This is a team game. You win or lose together, but he decided that he didn't need his team. Work as a team or die alone in Pathfinder. He decided to fight alone, so he died alone.

Lorila Sorita wrote:
You say he should of ran to the party, but from the sounds of it he just ran the in the direction away from the threat, which is the safest direction to run.

If all of your friends are dead and you're pretty sure you can outrun whatever the danger is, yes. If your entire team is right there and could help you fight the enemy, no.

Lorila Sorita wrote:
The party didn't have a cleric by the sounds of it, so what does running to the party do?

Been higher priority targets for the enemies. The Alchemist could effectively 1-shot them with a bomb on an average damage roll, but they need to get in range. I banned full casters from the game. I highly encouraged 2/3 and 1/2 casters, but the only person who played someone with healing that he could give to anyone else was the Inquisitor and that is because I made that character for the completely new player. When they hit level 2, their healing will double. In 10 - 15 point buy games, I always ban full casters: they simply outshine the more complex classes due to extreme ease of optimization. It has worked very well in the past.

Lorila Sorita wrote:
They couldn't have saved him. [The enemies] couldn't coup de grace him, but they could of just shot a few arrows into his unconscious body and he would of died all the same.

The enemies would have prioritized the other player characters if the paladin ran to them after being KOed.

For the most part, the enemies were relatively unaware of the other PCs right up until a bomb seemed to fly out of the snow and blow one of them out of the sky.

Had the other players yelled at or taunted the enemies, they likely would have attacked everyone instead of the guy painting a massive target on himself.

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GM Rednal wrote:
If the Paladin's player was new to the game ...

He was a veteran as best as I could tell. Maybe he was newer than I thought, but he had decent system mastery.

about the enemies:
The enemies were 3 diminutive Chaotic Evil Winter-Touched Sprites.

Were the enemies bigger and could have carried the paladin off, the one who 1v1ed him at the end might have dragged him off to the boss of the first half of the book, but it boiled down to finish him off or leave him to die on his own while not being threatened by anyone else. Them killing the paladin made more sense to me.

The enemies are trying to win and survive while acting in their pre-written tactics. They're going to act intelligently if they have intelligence.

There is one thing that makes me paranoid, though:
The players haven't killed any of the fey that have attacked them so far. Enemies have more or less been able to escape.

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I am running Reign of Winter, and my players encountered event D.

Event D:
The players find a clearing filled with birds pinned to the trees by diminutive arrows and leather. In this event are 3 winter-touched sprite warriors. They all have Deadly Aim, so they can actually deal lethal damage to players.

Environmental conditions: I decided to make the snow chest deep (costs 20 ft. to move 5 feet) per an earlier event. Partially, this was to give the players cover against the pixies. The other aspect, is that it is heavily snowing, bestowing a 20% miss chance. For the most part, this doesn't play any major role in the battle.

I had 4 players at the time: a Catfolk Alchemist, Tengu Inquisitor, Kitsune Rogue, and Aasimar Paladin. The former 3 are noobs who are learning the system, but the latter is more skilled.

Leading up to combat:
The players entered the scene. The Aasimar Paladin was flying 20 ft in the air (He had a fly speed), so he ignored the benefits / penalties that the deep snow provided. Everyone else was walking in deep snow.

The players entered the scene, saw the bird fetishes, and started talking about them. The paladin used Detect Evil, and noticed that there was evil afoot. The Paladin decides to fly forward, away from the party. At this point, combat starts.

During the first round of combat, the monsters used their impressive stealth skills to hide in the upper canopy of the trees. The paladin further flew around isolating himself from the players. The players prepared for combat, one stealthed around, another used his perception to search for enemies, and the last double moved to move 3 spaces in the deep snow.

A note about the enemies that is important:

something specific about the enemies:
Winter-touched Pixies have Constant Detect Good and Detect Evil, so they are more or less instantly aware that good creatures have come within 60 ft. of them. This means they more or less always know what direction to look in for the nearest creature with a detectable aura (Clerics and Paladins have auras, but inquisitors do not until level 4 like everyone else evidently).

The enemies are only really aware of the location of the Paladin at this point, so they attack the threat they know about and deal consistent damage to him on the 1st and 2nd round of combat while using snipe (-20 stealth) to remain hidden—I was surprised when it was working, and I wasn't even counting in the penalties to perception due to weather effects and distance.

On the 2nd round the Paladin decides to fly further away from his allies and hide in a tree. The enemies reposition using stealth.

On the 3rd round the paladin sees one of the enemies and attacks it with his light crossbow. It does some damage. The the attacked enemey makes itself more obvious and uses Dancing Lights to create move false trails.

On the 4th round, the paladin is low on HP (around 3 left) and decides to retreat from the enemies. How does he retreat? Does he fly to his allies? Does he go to the ground and hide? No. He decides to call the retreat and fly off-screen with a full-round fly (running while flying I guess). His fly speed is 20 ft., the enemies have a fly speed of 60 normally. The enemy shoots him again.

Luckily, the Catfolk Alchemist has a climb speed, so he climbed up one of the trees and pegged the the injured enemy with a bomb. This incapacitates this foe, so I have one of the other enemies fly down, grab the fallen enemy, and flee the battlefield.

On the 5th round, the Paladin decides to continue full-round fly, gets shot again. By this point he has 2 HP left.

On the 6th round, the Paladin realizes that maybe he isn't going to out fly the enemy. So he sees and shoots at it with his light crossbow. He misses. He gets shot again.

On the 7th round, the paladin misses his attack, shots shock and knocked out, and promptly coup de graced by his diminutive enemy.

Is this kill unfair? From my perspective, the Paladin made loads of terrible decisions. I also started thinking that the reason he was acting this way was because he viewed himself as the "Hero" of the story while the other characters were the supporting cast.

After his character died, he decided to quit the game. He packed up his stuff, and left the game store.

Of course, when he left, the other players just carried on as though nothing happened, and enjoyed the rest of the game night.

What do you guys think?

Blake's Tiger wrote:
KenderKin wrote:

Hypothetically a paladin can not be tricked into committing an evil act.

She must "willingly" do so that is not the same as unwittingly...
I thought so for a long time, but I'm not sure that's true. If a vampire dominates a paladin and forces him to decapitate helpless innocents, I think he still loses his class features until he gets an atonement spell cast on him.

This scenario would be completely anti-player, and for that reason alone should not be undertaken.

If you ever did this to a player, you minus well just stand up, make an obscene gesture at the player and tell him that he can go shove his character sheet up his arse.

The thing GMs need to keep in mind is that the players have to trust you to not do crap like this. I would honestly expect two major outcomes: the player decides to play by your rules thereby creating some god-awful monstrosity (mechanically, morally, and socially) that is designed to just impregnate and pillage your world, or the player decides to continue trying to play the game how he wants to play it despite your rule lawyering and obvious GM vs Player rulings on how mechanics work.

I think WotC got it right when they decided to not alignment restrict nor impose elements into their game where people could lose all their class features.

The entire idea of having characters lose their class powers when they A) didn't know it would be a consequence of certain actions (e.g. you didn't warn them) and B) you find ways to strip them of their powers just for the hell of it is absolutely absurd.

On a side note: Paladins are allowed to renounce their paladinhood if they don't feel they have lived up to their oaths.

Losobal wrote:
So in this scenario, the Paladin could end up with a "Surprise, now you're a Nazi like us!" outcome?

Pretty much, and worse is that he probably wouldn't have the choice to re-embrace his paladin superpowers to murder-hobo all of the nazis.

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Xuldarinar wrote:

I couldn't think of a better spot to put this, so I am placing it here;

Lets say a paladin is being tricked by a follower of some malevolent entity so far as to even joining their faith, lets say a 'good humored' LN cleric of Ruzel for sake of example. The paladin holds no knowledge of the nature of Ruzel except what they have been told by the cleric, and none have have had a chance to correct them. Over time the paladin becomes corrupted, and begins spouting heresies against other faiths and eventually the paladin starts to kill people believing them to be evil.

At what point does the paladin fall, more than likely tipping them off that something is wrong?

Your problem here is that you're having to create a scenario where the player is likely to figure out what is happening. You're also ignoring the idea that the paladin's deity is likely to tip him or her off to what is happening, and even without that, the paladin is likely find something ethically, morally or spiritually wrong with what is being asked of him.

The other major issue here is that the cleric radiates an aura that matches his or her deity's auras. Sure, a ring of mind shielding will prevent the paladin from noticing where the lingering evil aura is coming from, but it wont take him all that long to figure it out if he spend any time in the presence of this cleric. He will likely be looking for the source of the evil in an attempt to protect his new colleague.

To put this a different way: if you're doing this to an NPC, then have fun with it. If you're doing it to one of your players' characters without the player knowing what you're doing, stop it, but if he or she is fully aware of what is going on and is on board, full steam ahead.

The Paladin falls the moment he or she renounces his or her dedication to the deity, he does something the deity finds unforgivable (hence the atonement spell) or he begins serving a deity that cannot quality for the Paladin class.

There is another option: change the Paladin to a compatible archetype.

As a general rule, character changes should happen because of character agency, and this goes doubly so for player characters: believable stories revolve around NPCs acting in ways that serve their sense of agency, but this is amplified for player characters because stripping the player character of agency in the game enacts the same action upon the player in terms of the game. To put this bluntly, by setting up this whole scenario where the paladin falls without the player actively knowing that what he is doing to cause it, the player is denied the agency to make the conscious choice and accept the consequences, but instead leaves the player left with the decision to continue playing a character with what is effectively warrior levels, make a new character, or just not play in your game. I cannot stress enough how much people who play alignment restricted classes hate GMs pulling some auto-fall card out of their asses in an attempt to nerf the character.

To recap:
If NPC, full steam ahead.
If PC, if the player is fully aware of what is happening and choosing for it to happen, full steam ahead, but if the player is unaware of what you're doing, WTF are you doing? Shtap. You're only going to make your player feel singled out and harbor an Us vs Them mentality between you and the player.

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This is a little build of mine that is particularly absurd. The crux of it revolves around the idea that "Life Link" supernatural ability does not heal positive or negative energy, but instead it just heals damage regardless if the linkee is alive or undead.

The basic concept is this: Oracle [Spirit Guide] 17 / Shadowdancer 3 (Oracle 1 - 5, 9 - 20; Shadowdancer 6 - 8).
The game I am building this character is Core Races Only, so we'll use a Gnome. He is not only the ultimate healboy, especially when he gets a ring of regeneration, but he eventually has a full power animal companion with a Shadow that pretty much is never going to die.

Animal Companions are GREAT early on, but they have less impact on the game each level beyond 10 or so due to plenty of factors ranging from AC to the fact that enemies will just be able to kill the animal companion later on.

The Shadow has 1/2 the Oracle's HP (similarly to a familiar) but is far more dangerous because it is only affected by magical weapons or energy attacks (for 1/2 damage with exceptions) and completely immune to physical attacks. That means most of the high CR animals just auto-lose against it. The shadow is outrageously powerful, doubly so when we take into account that it can sink into the ground for total cover and total concealment.
The major drawback of the Shadow is that if it dies, its owner could gain a permanent negative level if he fails a DC 15 fort save (unlikely to happen if for this build). The other major drawback is that this pet cannot heal on its own (due to being undead), and there are only a few classes it would synergize with that could effectively heal it.

This is where Life Link (Su) comes into play. The ability does not claim that it uses positive or negative energy to heal, but instead that it simply transfers the damage, and therefore means that a living life oracle could heal a shadowdancer shadow with it.

This takes this minion from a potential liability if it takes too much damage (you risk the negative level if it dies or you dismiss it) to you being able to let it fight constantly. Hell, there are fights in APs where you could send it in and win due to the enemies having no retort.

What makes this doubly ridiculous is that I am not even taking into account the use of Animate Dead to create a buffer for the Oracle or throw out more undead: this build and theme could be even more overpowered. The Army of Bloody Skeletons acts as the fist, and the Shadow is the heavy hitting assassin that just strength damages enemies to death. When that isn't enough, the Oracles allies actually get off their butts and do something (when they get back from Pizza due to the Oracle taking on everything by himself and winning).

My prototype build:
Attributes (20 point buy)
Str 5 (+4 point buy, -2 race [gnome]
Dex 13 (-3 point buy)
Con 20 (-17 point buy, +2 race [gnome])
Int 10 (0 point buy)
Wis 9 (+1 point buy)
Cha 16 (-5 point buy, +2 race [gnome])
Ability Score Increase:
(4th/8th/12th/16th) +1 Con (20th) +1 doesn't matter.

(1st) Dodge
(3rd) Mobility
(5th) Combat Reflexes
(7th) Boon Companion [Animal Companion]
(9th/11th/13th/15th/17th/19th) Whatever you want. Leadership would be stupid, doubly so if your follower shadows your build.

Oracle with Spirit Guide Archetype:
Mystery: Lunar [Primarily for Primal Companion: Tiger {a.k.a. "Big Cat"}]
Oracle's Curse: Any work, really, but Haunted is themeatic.
(1st) Primal Companion
You don't have Life Link, yet, so you need to babysit your Tiger.
(2nd) At least you learn "Fumbletongue" for free.
(3rd) Your Spirit Guide decides to show up. Take a Life spirit. Congratulations: you have Life Link now.

Pretty standard oracle until level 5 where you go into Shadowdancer, so you basically have two throw-away levels, but when you hit Shadowdancer 3, you become absolutely terrifying. From that level on, you have a scout that can walk through walls, and worse is that probably has comparable HP to your party's fighter.

At level 9 this Oracle will likely have a +6 belt of constitution, and from that point on, will probably be saving for a Ring of Regeneration.
This character's HP at level 9 would be:

9th lvl Oracle's HP: 139 (+8 [1d8] 36 [8d8] +81 [con mod*9] +9 [toughness/lvl] + 5 [Oracle FCB])
9th lvl oracle's Shadow's HP: 69 (139/2 rnd down)

20th lvl Oracle's HP: 320 (+8 [1d8] 85 [19d8] +190 [con mod*10] +20 [toughness/lvl] + 17 [Oracle FCB])
20th lvl oracle's Shadow's HP: 160 (320/2 rnd down)

This build cannot access 9th level spells. This is one major drawback.

What do you guys think? If we throw in Throat Slicer, with the Big Cat..., well, just see my other post Throw down your weapons or the Wizard Gets It! for how ridiculous that is.


TheOrcnextdoor wrote:
^ Greater Grapple simply allows you to deal damage twice, pin then deal damage, or pin then tie up

it allows you to use your move to do those things. You can opt to use your STRD for something else like throat slicer.

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Green Smashomancer wrote:
So, you can maintain the same action you pin with? I thought a pin needed to be a separate roll?

with a successful maintain grapple check you automatically bestow one of the affects upon the graplee: deal damage, move both creatures, pin the graplee or, if the grapplee is pinned, tie up the graplee.

This is not an additional check: it is built into maintaining the grapple.

TheOrcnextdoor wrote:
how are you getting greater grapple without improved grapple

Play human and just take it or work it into your build. Level 7 is pretty much a throw-away slot.

Green Smashomancer wrote:
Bob Bob Bob wrote:

You're doing it all wrong. First you use Snapping Turtle Clutch to grapple the opponent on a miss, pin with Greater Grapple, and coup de grace with Throat Slicer. Basically, the counters from assassin's creed.

This sounds really cool. Am I interpreting it right that with these feats a character can:

1. Immediate action grapple on the other guys turn. Success means:

2. On characters turn, move action to maintain, then pin, and Coup-de-grace on the same turn? Or does the coup-de-grace have to wait a turn?

I just realized that you can make this even worse by going Master of Many Styles.

Play human and take Improved Grapple as your racial.
At level 1 you could have Snapping Turtle Style and Grabbing Style.
at level 2 you could have Crane Style.
At level 3 you could take Throat Slasher.
At level 5 you could take Snapping Turtle Clutch.
At level 6 you could take Crone Wing.
At level 8 you could take Greater Grapple.
At level 10 you could take Charging Stag Style.
At level 14 you could take Stag Horns (grapple as part of charge).

If the enemy attacks you, you force it to miss with crane wing (not an action), grapple it with Snapping Turtle Clutch using one hand (Immediate action), pin the target with Greater Grapple and finally coup de grace the target with your standard action.

If the enemy doesn't attack you, you can walk over to or charge it and grapple it, then next round maintain and coup de grace.

You just body people. If the GM throws a hoard of these at the players, it will be the single most terrifying thing ever if the monsters have at least monk levels.

This starts getting absurd by level 8.
A PC is likely to pick a race that has a STR bonus, so we can say he might go for 18 or so str after racial bonuses.
Grapple CMB at level 8 = 17; 19 (4 [str 18] + 2 [Imp Grap] + 2 [Great grap] + 1 [attribute increase] + 8 [monk levels]; +2 [+4 belt])
That is is on par with the CMDs of most full casters without even rolling. Add 10 to that due to average dice rolls, and you're looking at 27; 29 vs target's CMD.

Count in the penalty from Snapping Turtle Clutch and it drops to an average of 25 and 27, but that is still pretty high for averages.

Pure absurdity.

TheOrcnextdoor wrote:
Green Smashomancer wrote:
Bob Bob Bob wrote:

You're doing it all wrong. First you use Snapping Turtle Clutch to grapple the opponent on a miss, pin with Greater Grapple, and coup de grace with Throat Slicer. Basically, the counters from assassin's creed.

This sounds really cool. Am I interpreting it right that with these feats a character can:

1. Immediate action grapple on the other guys turn. Success means:

2. On characters turn, move action to maintain, then pin, and Coup-de-grace on the same turn? Or does the coup-de-grace have to wait a turn?

coup-de-grace isa full round action, and then you are only critting with your times X multiplier.

The Throat Slicer feat reduces it to a Standard Action under specific circumstances (unconscious, bound, pinned). What this means is that if the character in question uses a 4x crit weapon that is a one-handed or light weapon then the damage done can be quite absurd by itself.

Coup de grace's DC is Fort DC 10 + damage done.

The other thing is that you don't even need to be proficient the weapon to use it for this purposes: you could have a light pick that you never use then just one-shot people.
I'll use an NPC as an example because that is predictable.
At <4 level, the NPC would likely have a STR of 17 (15 + 2 racial), so with aforementioned pick with x4 crit mod, the NPC would crit for a minimum of 16 (3 + 1) damage, and force the target to make a fort save DC 26 (10+16) or die.

At higher levels this just gets compounded by the reality that the aggressor's strength (and therefore the save to not die) would increase. The rate at which the aggressor could pin the defender and kill it just gets faster.

If we take a monster with Grab and give it Throat Slicer, the monster becomes outrageously dangerous compared to where it was originally.

Bob Bob Bob wrote:

You're doing it all wrong. First you use Snapping Turtle Clutch to grapple the opponent on a miss, pin with Greater Grapple, and coup de grace with Throat Slicer. Basically, the counters from assassin's creed.

Against a party the tactic described in the OP is suicidal. A grappler (usually) loses AC and their ability to make AoO. This means that the rest of the party surrounds them and turns them into a punching bag, with free flanking for all. The rest of round 1, quietly left out of the description. If the grappler survives that, they're still surrounded by the party when they make the threat. Which means it's less "throw down your weapons or I'll kill this guy" and more "please don't kill me or I'll kill this guy" which is a much weaker bargaining position.

Minion "Grappler" grapples someone while his allies are fighting the party.

The PCs either focus on him to get their friend back while not damaging the other enemies, or they damage the other enemies while putting their ally at risk.

At the point, Mr. Minion "Grapple" either dies or he attempts to maintain the grapple as a standard or a move action and moves it to a pin.

If he succeeds, his turn is either effectively over (Standard Action to maintain) or he still has his standard action (Move Action to maintain), and he can now choose to either coup de grace the player character immediately or ready his action to coup de grace the character with his standard action if the players don't comply.

Granted, throat slicer doesn't make it so coup de graces don't provoke AOOs, so he might die to AOOs.

The assassin's creed style defense is great, I'll have to try that at some point.

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I found a combination of feats that is probably one of the more effective strategies in the game for just killing targets, specifically the less martial player characters if you're the GM.

Throat Slicer looks like a great feat, but it takes a bit of work to make it great. The Grabbing Style works great here, but mixing it with the Improved Grapple line (Improved Grapple, Greater Grapple and maybe Rapid Grappler) and a character built to grapple targets makes throat slicer ridiculously viable.
If the character's grappling ability is high enough, escaping the grapple could become all but impossible for characters who are not built into dealing with grapplers. On round 1, the aggressor moves into position and grapples. On round 2, the aggressor pins the defender with a move action and then either coup de graces the target or readies its target to do so and demands the defender's allies surrender.

Mix this with a x4 crit weapon that qualifies for the throat slicer feat and the coup de grace starts to move from potentially survivable, to almost assured death due to the auto-crit.

Either way, this is one way to make martials more deadly.

It is also a way to make your games lethal again if you're stuck with the players being nigh on invincible gods of death.

Hey guys, I'm interested in getting a critique for a druid build I'm going to be running at a local game-shop.
This build revolves around playing to the strengths of the party around it:
it buffs its animal companion to increase its viability as combatants, uses Wildshape to either defend allied full casters or support front-line character, uses Awaken other "pet" oriented spells to create zones of denial within the party, and both raises animals and grows plant creatures via the Grow Plant Creature feat to create strongholds or homesteads.

The other major aspect of the druid is he uses Many Lives to circumvent death and Hibernate to sleep off negative levels due to being reincarnated.

Sha'Quessir the reincarnated druid.
Alta Cath the Big Cat.

666bender wrote:

Druid have, normally, unless magic is cheap and out there , armor class issues.

And sometimes to hit issues as they are MAD. Also low on feats.

You kind of just described nearly every class in Pathfinder that isn't a full caster.

Lets take The Spell Sage Wizard for maximum "getting off the ground fast" potential.
Step 1: Take every trait and feat that you can that increases the caster level of a specific spell (Burning Hands it popular). Congratulations: you now do 5d4 damage at level 1 (12.5 damage on average) to a 15 foot cone.

Spam the crap out of this (or whatever spell you chose) until you hit level 3. At this point, you, being the spell sage that you are, use Spell Study to cast the Cleric spell "Lesser Animate Dead" in conjunction with "Focused Spells" to have the most skeletons / Zombies following you around as possible to act as meat shields for you and your allies.

From here, you retrain your feats and traits to whatever spell is the most optimal for you, and probably settling on disintegrate for the absurd damage it can do on a failed save. Next, you take some feats that let you apply a meta-magic without increasing its spell level and apply Quicken, now you can cast TWO Disintegrates in a single round (go you!) and can basically one-shot or one-round nearly every monster you could be going up against while your army of the undead watches your back.

So what do you need in terms of Attributes to pull off this amazing build?
High Int, High Con (for the HPs) and maybe enough strength to pay for your skeletons and spells with Blood Money. You can dump every other statistic, expect Dex if you're going ray spell specialization (aka Disintegrate).

Magic is also cheap as hell for a druid: do you use weapons? No? Ok, take Craft Wondrous Item and make all of your own gear for 1/2 the cost: it costs you 1 feat to be able to make all the gear you and your pet(s) will need. Some GMs will ban this option.

Feats: Plan out the feats you're going to take to turn yourself into a specifically built badass.

For my hybrid Druids, I prefer going Reincarnated Druid + Green Faith Acolyte. Start venerable, and if you make it to level 5, die and be reborn with your physical statistics having been reset. You get a free +3 to all mental statistics (but can't gain 3 more from aging) while having the -6 penalty to physical stats being removed.

Be a strong caster, be a strong melee combatant (Doubly so if you roll a Bugbear), and then wildshape into the animal equivalent of Superman (Warcats are fun).

zainale wrote:
can you make an effective healer out of one of these guys? and if so can you point me to a guide that i can read?

Druids are effectively 1/2 a Cleric in terms of healing.

I think the Shaman class could be an effective healer (it mixes Cleric and Druid), but instead of a familiar, you get a glorified familiar.

Be warned with using Shaman familiars as combat familiars, the cost to replace them is 500*Class levels instead of 200*class levels.

Channel energy is just too valuable to lose.

ChaosTicket wrote:
Youre just looking way too far ahead.[...]Each time I read this thread i just dont think you play low levels much.[...]People just keep talking about spells. You can only use twice at level 1 and that is all you have to take out every enemy for the day.[...]I havent even used a Druid yet, but unless I get a Gentle GM, its just suicide.

I was pretty much the heart of the party: when enemies attacked, Dulin (my Deinonychus animal companion) pretty much lead the charge and came back alive every time.

I remember his build, allow me to throw you some numbers:
First, the pages:
Animal Companions.
Armor Deinonychus are small animals, so at the bottom of the armor page it tells us that dulin's armor costs 2x standard.
The Druid class page shows me that druids start with 70 gp.

Dulin the Deinonychus:
Size Small
Speed 60 ft.
AC +1 natural armor
Attack 2 talons (1d6), bite (1d4)
Ability Scores Str 11, Dex 17, Con 17, Int 2, Wis 12, Cha 14
Special Qualities low-light vision, scent.

Animal companions start with "2d8" + con mod hp aka 9 + con mod hp (4.5+4.5), Dulin, as you can see above has 17 con, so he has +3 hp per HD, hence giving him 15 HP (4.5+4.5+3+3).

I gave him Studded Leather Armor (+3 AC; 50 gp) and just left it on him indefinitely due to the ability for creatures to sleep in leather armor without penalty.

So lets tally up some of Dulin's basic stats:
HP: 15
AC: 18 (10 [base] +1 [size] +3 [dex] +3 [Armor] +1 [Natural Armor])
Bonus to hit: +2 (+1 [size] +1 [bab])
Average damage on full attacks (because that is how the bestiary does it): 9 damage a round (3.5 + 3.5 [2 talons] + 2.5 [bite] + 0 [str]).

He isn't garbage, but he can take a hit and possibly dish out some damage. He can avoid hits like a discount fighter (most fighters at lvl 1 will opt for a Scale Mail (+5 ac / +3 dex) and a shield (+2 ac / — dex) to get to 17 - 20 AC (18 - 21 if small) or a tower shield to get higher AC than that.

By lvl 3, Dulin's AC would spike up by 3 (to 21) due to his dex going up by 1 and the natural armor increase.

This tells me that your idea that Druids and their animal companions are garbage is flawed. I have played a druid, they are quite beefy at level 1 due to the animal companion. Druids who forsake such companions (they tend to crap on the floor) for a domain become a Discount Cleric/Wizard with some cool abilities, compared to where they are now, which could be likened to a discount Cleric/Wizard that starts with Leadership.

ChaosTicket wrote:
Kineticist could start with a ranged touch attack with d6+Con modifier attack.

The only Kineticist I played was a Kinetic Chrugeon from level 1, and I can tell you that it is fun to be able to pretty much heal indefinitely. The rest of the party (the ones taking damage) decide when to stop due to the non-lethal damage and the Burn cap, but the party is generally able to do far more in a day than they are with just a Cleric.

ChaosTicket wrote:
bad player cooperation. We all died.
We all died should be the default in this case. If you guys were in one of my dungeons, the giraffe wouldn't have even made it out. Pathfinder is a team game, anyone who tells you otherwise is full of crap.
ChaosTicket wrote:
The Druid has major weaknesses. A pure caster druid is really non-viable.
Two Words: Summoner Build. Yes, the Summoner Class does it better, especially with Master Summoner, but it also can't revive other PCs with reincarnate or use restoration spells. It is a give an take; plus while the summoner's pet is stronger, the druid's doesn't go away when the character goes to sleep.
ChaosTicket wrote:
Scimitar/club+heavy wooden shield+Hide Armor and Sling is necessary to start with. Strength is very necessary.
It's called an animal companion, and it is usually on-par with a mediocre fighter. Imagine you have a Warrior following you around.
ChaosTicket wrote:
I dont know about the best pet[.]

The animal companions have 2 HD, 1 feat, 1 bab and typically have multiple attacks. Trust me, they tend to be pretty dangerous. The best animal companion in the game is generally considered to be the Big Cat, but the "Warcat" is generally considered to be slightly better for physical things. Ultimately, however, most of the animal companions can be viable.

The other reality is this: if the enemy is attacking the animal companion, the other players are not being attacked by that enemy. The other player characters are probably more effective at a specific job than the animal companion is, so it is a winning solution for the party. Another big point is that if an enemy is attacking the animal companion, the rogue has an instant flanking buddy. ^_~

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ChaosTicket wrote:
Druid is next on my list.

Wonderful, druids are actually really fun. You just have to remember their gimmick: they are self reliant characters who are not intended to have the easy refinement of the other classes. What I mean by this is that you can go pretty much any direction with Druids, be it a specialist or a generalist, but they are hit much worse by not specializing into things.

This said, you can do some crazy things that other people simply can't without expending crazy resources: you could fly around as a Thrush and, with the proper feats (Natural Spell [spells] and Wild Speech [language]) cast spells and talk without issue.
I'll talk more about that later, but yes: Druids are more complex than clerics. In terms of healing, think of Druids as 1/2 a cleric.
ChaosTicket wrote:
Druid require Wisdom as their casting statistic so it will likely be the top, secondary or tertiary stat in terms of stat allotment, but this depends entirely on build. Typically speaking Will, Con and Str/Dex will be competing against each other in a build with STR and DEX being emphasized depending on if the Druid is going to go with large or small creatures.
ChaosTicket wrote:
Weapons are functional for druids, but you shouldn't build your character around them like you can for other character classes. One of the reasons druids don't have amazing weapon proficiency is that their core combat mechanic, Wildshape, hampers the use of weapons therefore making them be counter-productive.
ChaosTicket wrote:
Armor is great for druids, and the Wild Armor enchantment, while expensive, can turn various forms into defacto tanks. If you grab a plantshape form that has regeneration, that you qualify to use, then you can more or less just tie up the enemies long enough for your allies to dispatch them. You wont be a god of death, but you can ensure your allies, who are, are more effective.
ChaosTicket wrote:

You are a full spellcaster, but your spells are not as good as a Cleric's spells. However, your spells revolve around animals, chiefly your animal companion, if you took one, and any awakened or trained beasts that are with you.

You can be incredibly deadly with the right helpers, just one of which is your Animal Companion, and it is entirely possible to have a small army of animals ready to attack with abandon at your word.
Your biggest power, however, is your summon nature's ally spell line. If you go to Superior Summons, then it is easy to flood the battlefield with enough minions to prevent the enemy from effectively doing anything.
ChaosTicket wrote:

Wildshape is outrageously powerful. People don't see how strong it is until they think about it. Very few NPCs suspect a random dog with a collar when it meanders over to their secret conversation for loves. Fewer people suspect a thrush in the trees when there are literally hundreds of birds watching the events unfold. In combat, there are plenty of options to play with: anything with multiple attacks and pounce, anything with multiple attacks that all have grab, Hippopotamuses with the vital strike chain or, my favorite, huge flying animals to pick up people, fly up several hundred feet and let them go.

Don't underestimate Wildshape.
ChaosTicket wrote:

The domains for Druids are OK, but they are not amazing unless your build revolves around them. If you want to play a "tank" druid, then anything that gives you a familiar is great, just play Lawful Neutral and take the "Kami, Shikigami" familiar at level 7 and give it the protector archetype so it absorbs 1/2 the damage you take. It has cast healing and can choose to not absorb damage that would kill it. Your HP effectively doubles over multiple fights. I'm not a fan of Domains over Animal Companions, but it is doable.

ChaosTicket wrote:

The Saurian Druid is the most powerful druid archetype in the game: you can apply the Advanced (+1), Giant (+1) or Young (-1) templates to these animals to put them in your summoning ranges for spells, thereby keeping certain favored animals viable for much longer than usual. The other archetype I like is the Reincarnated Druid, which you can build to be both a physical and magical character. Granted, the Reincarnated Druid starts off weaker, but it is one of the few archetypes that could be ancient since reincarnation can revive you from dying from old age. Mix it with a Green Faith Adept and you're golden.

ChaosTicket wrote:
Early Levels
Animal Companions turn you into a god here. The Big Cats are considered some of the best animal companions in the game, but more exotic companions such as the Deinonychus can also be viable. If you give the animal companion leather armor proficiency, then it is entirely possible to have an animal companion with an AC over 20 at level 1, one, I might add, that has a damage output on par with a dedicated fighter. Much like the fighter, however, the animal companion will quickly become marginalized by the game's higher levels.
ChaosTicket wrote:
I think I understand the appeal of a druid

Druids, as I said before, are absurdly fun, but they do require quite a bit of system mastery to make effective. It is also entirely possible to turn them into pet-masters that follow and aid the animal companion.

The other classes are more specialized than druids are, but the druid has the strength that it can prey on whatever weaknesses it can find. Casters have bad AC (the animal companion takes them), Tanks tend to have poor touch AC (touch spells take them), DPR classes have strong damage output but lower defenses (a combination of Druid and companion takes them out), and when the druid is outclassed, Wildshape or spells that impede non-druids resolves that problem.

A well built and used druid is something that strikes terror into its foes because of the options it has to deal with them, and worse is that fact that druid pretty much never stand alone: there are plenty of spells that give them lots of help.

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Ciaran Barnes wrote:
It's a lot more explainable than suddenly becoming a wizard.

What are you talking about? Some huge bearded man just walks in and tell you that you are one.

TheMonkeyFish wrote:
My question is, what is the best non altered class for healing? Hybrid, Base and Core classes are all okay to use, but no Archetypes if possible.

Best combination here is going to end up being the Oracle class with a Gnome. Humans are great, but you'll be losing a slew of options if you take one over a gnome; plus few players are going to take a gnome character seriously.

Your weakest and most vulnerable option while maximizing your healing potential is the Life Oracle. However, you'll want to also be effective for other things.

My favorite option for this is being a Lunar Oracle with the Spirit Guide [Life] Archetype to get Life Link through the spirit guide. You said you didn't want archetypes, but I'll explain it here. You become a character whose offense can be entirely summed up with the Animal Companion, and considering you can take a Big Cat, which is considered one of the best animal companions in the game, you should be fine.

You focus your attributes on Constitution for HP and Charisma for extra spells, but you want to focus on Constitution. For your first feat, just take Toughness for extra HP.

A Ring of Regeneration more or less makes your build work neigh on godly for healing since so long as people don't die you can just heal them up to full.

Lets look at some numbers:
Lets assume you dump your attribute increases into HP so you become the ultimate healer, and with your emphasis on buffing or healing, your offensive saves are not important.
Con 30 (20+6+4) = +10 HP per level; Con 28 at level 10 = +9 HP per level.
Toughness = +1 hp per level.
Favored Class Bonus = +1 HP per level.
Hit Dice = +5 HP per level, +8 at start.

You could, in theory, have a +6 belt of constitution by level 10, so we'll go with that.

Your HP at lvl 10 = 163 hp.
Your HP at lvl 20 = 343 hp.

Your front-line characters are most likely going to emphasize offense with just enough HP to keep them alive, but lets assume that you have 3 front-line characters with you to stack the deck against you. Lets also say they are all Barbarians.
Hit dice: +7 hp/lvl.
Con: +3 hp/lvl.
Favored class: +1 hp/lvl.
Toughness: +1 hp/lvl.
= 12 (7+3+1+1) / lvl.

Their singular HP at lvl 10 = 125 hp.
Their singular HP at lvl 20 = 245 hp.

Their collective HP at these levels:
10th: 375 hp.
20th: 735 hp.

You wont be able to heal all of them to full with your base HP, but it does mean that you can just keep giving them HP until they either die, the enemy dies, of you run too low on HP because your personal healing and Ring of Regeneration has failed to keep your HP high enough. Still, you'd be effectively losing 14 hp a round with these three guys (15 - 1), and the amount of time it would take for your healing to bleed you dry to where you have to stop would take an absurd amount of time later on: 11 rounds at level 10 and 24 rounds at level 20.

To put this in perspective, this means that the fight has to go on for 11 or 24 rounds straight with each of your barbarian friends taking damage each round. In essence it becomes a race where the enemy has to do your HP in damage to the party for you to be in danger at all, otherwise the fight ends, the "important" characters full heal and you slowly get topped off by your 1/round healing ring or, in a pinch, your healing spells.

There is also the reality that you don't have to do anything for this healing to continue affecting your allies, so you could ready your action each round to use a tower shield to block an enemy's attacks thereby rending yourself nearly immune to attack unless you're being harried by more than one opponent. Of course, that just gives your barbarian friends flanking opportunities.

Do keep in mind that enemies will out damage your healing with ease, and the Life Link is better at healing damage that is spread out instead of concentrated. Still, if the target is focusing entirely on one person, the rest of the party should have no problem dispatching it.

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You are a powerful necromancer Malovec!

The answer is: yes. Wizards are not bound by alignment because their power comes from knowledge, but clerics and Divine spellcasters are due to their spellcasting coming from a deity who doesn't cast such spells and therefore can't bestow them to a mortal.

Scythia wrote:
DominusMegadeus wrote:
Protoman wrote:

Kick the whiny baby out immediately.

Note: Not an actual unmentioned baby that might be around the table. The whiny player that refuses to play well with others and making the game into a toxic experience for everyone. THAT whiny baby.

This guy is a babykicker! Hey everybody, get the baby-kicker! Rabble rabble!
But are they goblin babies?

My gods, what kind of monster kicks a baby?

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