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Some notes on the Oracle that are pretty important in my eyes. Sorry if this is a repeat, but I do not have the time or patience at the moment to read thru all the pages of this thread.

Oracle of Stone
1. The usefulness of Steelbreaker skin as weapons progress. A simple +1 modifier pretty much negates this ability. Yes, for the first four levels it is pretty brutal, but after that, it really becomes a useless piece. Maybe have it 'count as' more magical for purposes of sundering items at later levels? It is Once a day, activated and done. Not having the ability to turn it off. Give it a duration like Earth Glide, so it can be used multiple times a day, just in increments of one minute.

2. Mighty Pebble/Rock Throwing - Do these damages stack together? When you throw a Mighty Pebble, does it also get the damage from Rock throwing? How about the 11th level bonus from Touch of Acid? What kind of damage is the Mighty Pebble - having it listed as 'elemental' threw us for a loop, because of earth and clay golems.

3. Touch of Acid - reading this ability over again, I see one problem - this would bestow it on ranged ammunition, but would this work paired with Steelbreaker Skin?

Oracle of Battle
1. Skill at Arms - This is pretty unbalanced. 3 feats for one Revelation? I think if you stagger when you gain these abilities, similiar to how the other Foci gain more power in a Revelation at certain levels, it will make it a bit more balanced.

2. Wall of Fire in their added spells? I keep wondering why - I can see battlefield application, but that is more the Oracle of Flames, is it not? Maybe Lesser Globe of Invulnerability, or Hallucinatory Terrain.

3.Maneuver Mastery - can this revelation be taken multiple times, each time focusing on another(different) maneuver?

Oracle of Flame
1. Do Burning Magic and any of the other Supernatural revelations stack?
I can see combinations like Burning Magic and Heat Aura, Fire Breath or Firestorm?

Those are my pieces. Honestly, the Oracle class itself is pretty solid. Divine spontaneous casting is pretty epic. The higher the level, the more powerful that ability becomes. Many people have pushed for a customized spell list - I think the spells as they are work very well together. A great many Oracles should not have a bunch of varying spells. Maybe a bit more focus to Divination, but not all Oracles are the type to sit in a tent with smoky rooms and weird sayings.

Now, a word on the Curses. Deafness destroys a good part of a character - this curse is pretty rough already, but as the group I play with has found, unless you have some method of understanding people,
why is the character in a party? We use Sense Motive for understanding body language, reading lips etc., and it seems to work fine. A deaf individual in reality uses other senses to make up for the lack of hearing. And sight is a major sensory input, after all.

Malisteen wrote:

Right now the oracle is, mechanically, a lousy cleric. The focus abilities, with the possible exception of battle, are hardly any better then the clerics channel energy and 2 sets of domain abilities, and the oracle spellcasting style is just woefully ineffective when compared to the cleric.

The cleric knows all their spells, can spontaneously cast healing spells so they don't run the risk of memorizing anything useless, and gains two sets of bonus spells, and they can cast these spells as soon as they can cast spells of that level. The oracle knows a measly handful of spells, only has one list of bonus spells so they're more likely to be stuck with duds, and they have to wait an extra character level for new spell levels, and they have to wait even one more character level to gain access to their bonus spell of that level. Sure, they cast spontaneously, but the cleric, again, already does that.

Alright, I can see on the surface why that is said. Now, step it up a bit farther please. As a cleric, how many times would you prepare a status ailment spell? Once, maybe twice? Truthfully, if you come across a situation that needs ailment removal, you will need it again. The comparison between Cleric and Oracle of any Foci for their casting styles is just like going into an argument between Wizards and Sorcerors. There are a great many things good about both sides. Yes, the Oracle is a very difficult class to choose spells for, but the spells exist. Even within the basic cleric lists, there are a great amount of spells that while might not see alot of light normally, there are always spells like that. The fact that ailment removal can be done like this is a huge boon. Unless you wait a day for the cleric to prepare a bunch of remove curse, or other ailment removal, your stuck. And that can prove costly. Where as the Oracle walks over, and spends a slot to remove it, and moves on. Yes, it limits your spell selections if you go that route a bit, but honestly? I look it over, and out of the cleric list, why not go with ailment removal? I still got a bunch of spells to play with, and the Foci themselves give you some additionals. And while soem Foci have very powerful spells in their lists, some of the revelations are sub par in that list. Bones is a perfect example of this - Animate Dead, Control Undead, and these are automatically added to your spells known list at the appropriate levels. They don't need to be taken, since you learn them automatically.

Now, on the topic of the Foci - the Battle Foci to me seems a little over-powered in comparison to even the cleric. It turns the Oracle into a character whom surpasses a cleric in every aspect. The cleric gains two Domains and the ability that goes with them, some more armor/weapon profs and channel energy. To be truthful, I have been on the Stone Foci with an Oracle, and even seeing it isn't min-maxed but built for my fun first, to say they are not even is easy for me to disagree with. You lose the channel ability, but gain a great number of additional abilities - moving thru/seeing thru that Foci's specialty, or a touch attack of that element. Yes, I can understand if that element is ignored by the creatures you are fighting, but that is what you have weapons for folks. In addition, not all of the elemental revelations attach the descriptor. Mighty Pebble is unassigned 'elemental' damage, wind gives you invisibility, waves give syou punitive form - look over the class and yes, it is different than the cleric. But is the cleric better? In my opinion not - your channel energy does have it's uses, but honestly I will take the ability to excel in an area rather than the blanket that channel energy covers. Yes, there are times where the cleric will excel, but in my opinion, while not humble, The Oracle's revelations give a different spin on things - giving abilities that might not always be used, but they are there, and a great many of them have additional effects that you can use creatively to do other things. Flame wings - light a building on fire from the roof. Maybe use it for light as well as flight? Earth Glide - use it to flee a battle, or to put yourself in a position to flank with a rogue. Sneak attacks are really difficult to block if they come from above a large boulder. Gaseous Form - need I even get into this one's ability to put people in a good place, and it does not expressly say they have to even be touching you....none of them do. I assume they are required to be, but even still, moving out in emergencies.And Bone's Spirit Walk - this ability is both powerful AND could be used to move very quickly. Spirit walk your party, get on the other side of a room with a beholder you are afraid to fight. Boom, you have avoided a big nasty with one ability. And this is just off the top of my head folks,not taking hours to come up with them. The Foci themselves seem balanced to me - I have yet to see why people believe that the Foci other than Battle are under-powered. If you scale Battle back, it turns the Foci to the same 'power level' as the rest. Otherwise, if your party wants a healer, run an oracle with some item creation feats. Brew Potion, Craft Wand all have amazing ideals and can do alot in between - give the wizard, rogue, sorceror and bard wands, potions to the fighter, barbarian, ranger and druid. There, you have extended your spellcasting even farther. Choose a Foci, and figure out how to extend it into various things. Yes, resistances and immunities will pop up and make your Foci useless if you run an elemental type. But there are things to negate everything folks.

Alrighty, After looking over the Foci again and again, I think I have discussed this topic to death with Shane as well, here goes.

In the Battle Foci, you can a *BUNCH* of things that people take for granted. one Revelation for Medium and Heavy Armor, and tack on martial weapons? A solid and powerful oracle can then go toe to toe with pretty much anything a cleric could, and resoundingly, the spont. casting is pretty amazing as well. Add in that even more revelations come down the line, like Battlecry, and you have a reason it is considered the end all of Foci. To solve at least the weapon/armor bonus from the Foci, I would suggest scaling the gains by level - Martial weapons at the start, then medium at 5th level, Heavy Armor at 7th or 10th. This would be more in line with the rest of the Oracle class, and also less front-heavy. Honestly, as is, why not take the Skill at Arms Revelation first? Full plate, healing and ailment removal as spontaneous casting? That is your cleric, with a lot more versatility. The other revelations then build up and farther to that, bringing it to do even more than the cleric does. But the Skill at Arms revelation is the only one to me that seems overly "broken".

Bones has some nifty abilities, but again, the Oracle class does not HAVE to have a God set to base off. In my character, instead of a god, I have been thinking that I am an avatar of Stone. Power from the earth, and I think more dwarven-like. No god represented, just the ideal of stone shaped by my will. Similiar to a monk without a god - you work for what you believe, not what someone else says to you. A code of ethics might constrain you, but it might not be words from god that created that code of ethics.

Now with regards to the witch - there are a number of things overlooked, and the Coven hex has some power that we have yet to actually tap into as of yet. I do look forward to seeing that go into play.

The Cavalier is very much playable as is. The two weapon fighting tree does turn the Cavalier into a brutal combat persona - just because those extra dice help him overcome damage reductions as well. A Two-Handed weapon might not work as well, because the multiple weapons give alot more dice than just one would. Maximizing the dice from the Challenge ability should be the first thing to fcus on - once the challenge is over, you can still go toe to toe in close combat with other things as well. Just like the ranger does.

Inquisitor I have yet to see much on, the warm-up of his Justices I can understand working, but honestly, instead of the warm-up, maybe make them level-based like the Oracle Revelations are in some cases. Honestly, what need will a character have for an adamantine weapon after three rounds?

Summoner - This horse is now vampiric? Seriously folks, I just cast Heal on it and get this thing over with already? Great class, but the evolution points need work. I won't go into it, because Shane and Jon have already done so in ways I believe work very well.

Oracle - wording on the revelation abilities all around. Some of them are very ambiguous in their wording, and it can get very weird when combining the different revelations. Even in the Foci of Stone, Mighty Pebble and Rock Throwing - does that mean I deal the Mighty Pebble damage AND the basic rock throwing damage as well?

Alchemist - This class does have a few problems inherent. The splash damage, maybe have the ability to change the shape of the splash? OR just not have a splash damage? In addition, bringing up the whole fact that the Alchemist gets so few discoveries, and they go to either the bomb OR the mutagen? Allow them one in each table, or give alot more discoveries so the alchemist can do different things. Just a couple of discoveries more, because honestly the alchemist has a few nifty tricks, but if even one party member is in combat, they would be worried about killing a PC - and unless your character is rightfully a d***e-bag, that doesn't happen.

That is my opinions, as of this time in the post. Yes, I know now that the Dwarf gets no speed penalty from armor. But lacking the encumbrance also comes into play - who needs a bag of holding with the Lame curse? :D

Also - Hand Sign might get around the deaf, but maybe instead of Deaf you are hard of hearing? The deafness is proving a major issue, although honestly it should give a bonus to Sense Motive, or maybe a Read Lips ability?

Now that Shane is up in the playtest digitalization process, here is mine

Kara Tinroof, Oracle of Stone 14, LG
HP 80, Deaf
Str 14, Dex 15, Con 10, Int 14, Wis 20, Cha 10
AC 29 (Dwarven Full Plate +4, Heavy Mithril Shield[ w/ Shield Focus], Ring of Protection +1, Dodge
- Ranged attacks have a 20% miss chance against me if I move
- DR 3/-
- Warhammer of Defending +5 is not calculated in this, but is used in defense more often than not.
Initiative +2
Fort +9 (Base +4, Con +0, Cloak of Resistance +5)
Reflex +11 (Base +4, Dex +2, Cloak of Resistance +5)
Will + 19 (Base +9, Wis +5, Cloak of Resistance +5)
CMB +12 (Base +10, Str +2)
+4 if attempting a trip
CMD 24 (Base 10, CMB +12, Dex +2)
+4 if resisting a trip
+4 if Resisting a trip or bull rush while standing on solid ground
Warhammer of Defending +5
Attack Bonus +17/+12
Damage 1d8+7, Crit x3
- Weapon may remove up to a +5 enhancement bonus to add the same amount to AC

Attack Bonus +13/+8
Damage 2d4+3, Crit x2, 20 ft Range increments[Max 5]
Medium Armor Prof
Heavy Armor Prof
Combat Casting
Wind Stance
Warhammer Prof
Quick Draw
Shield Focus
Craft(Armor) +12
Craft(Weapon) +12
Craft(Gemcutting) +19
Diplomacy +17
Knowledge(Religion) +12
Knowledge(History) +12
Perception +22
Sense Motive +22
Spellcraft +19
Special Abilities
Scent (Gained from being a Deaf Oracle)

Foci - Stone
- Crystal Sight - This was grabbed because as a power, I can see this use in dungeons, caverns and other places to just see thru walls. Yes, potentially being misused, but meh. All is good in my book.
- Earth Glide - I took this for my escape plan. Seriously, if it can follow me into the earth, it at least gives me time to run. And It won't provoke is still normal movement
- Mighty Pebble - Making rocks into magical weapons, that deal a decent bit of damage. Only usable a few times a day, but even then, it could be very nasty seeing as I can do that on my way into combat.
- Rock throwing - A quick, easy and endlessly supplied range weapon. Sure, only 100 ft max, but whoop de doo. Still a nice thing, a pretty nifty combination with Mighty Pebble and Touch of Acid
- Steelbreaker Skin - This I took to counter other classes, like Cavalier and Rogue. If the weapon is broke, where are they? My big concern is what happens to 'natural' weapons when I have this active?
- Stone Stability - Granting a +4 to CMD against bull rushes or trip attempts while on solid ground. Just nasty. Upper levels grant improved and greater trip as well..So why not?
- Touch of Acid - Add acid damage to any weapon I wield, and that could be added on top of the Mighty Pebble ability...this power is abit on the broken side, seeing as it goes to EVERY weapon I wield...but no turn-off for this ability either.
0 Level
Create Water, Detect Magic, Detect Poison, Light, Read Magic, Resistance, Stabilize, Guidance, Mending
1st Level
Cure Light Wounds, Bless, Bless Water, Cause Fear, Endure Elements, Shield*
2nd Level
Cure Moderate Wounds, Remove Paralysis, Enthrall, Make Whole, Shatter, Acid Arrow*
3rd Level
Cure Serious Wounds, Dispel Magic, Remove Curse, Remove Blindness/Deafness, Meld into Stone*
4th Level
Cure Critical Wounds, Restoration, Air Walk, Divine Power, Stone Skin*
5th Level
Breath of Life, Flame Strike, True Seeing, Wall of Stone*
6th Level
Animate Objects, Heal, Stone Tell*
7th Level

* Denotes spells gained from Stone Foci
Warhammer of Defending +5
Dwarven Full Plate +4
Heavy Mithril Shield
Ring of Sustenance
Ring of Protection +1
Cloak of Resistance +5
Smith's Outfit (Heavy leather apron over the full plate, embossed with a large cut diamond-looking symbol)
Spell Component Pouch
Handy Haversack
- 10,000 gp Diamond x2
- Dust of Dryness x10
- Sundrod x10
- Oil, Pint x9
- Silk rope, 100 ft
- Crowbar
- Potion of Light x4
- trail Ration x10
- Bedroll
- Smith Tools, MW
- Potion of True Strike x4
Notes on Everything
- First off, yes this build could have been made ALOT more nasty by being a dwarf. But my big deal with that was the loss of speed from the heavy armor, combined with the loss of speed for a dwarf would have been nasty. Plus, I went the route of Foci of Stone to be very dwarf-like, while not being dwarven. - Next, is the combinations within the Foci itself. A great many of the Stone Foci needs to be looked at carefully, for the granted abilities sometimes affect one another in weird ways. Take for example Touch of Acid with Mighty Pebble - would the acid damage get added to the Mighty Pebble? I believe a good number of these abilities need some more precise wording to be truly worked out - Take Mighty Pebble for example. Does the pebble get thrown as part of that standard action, like Produce Flame, or does it have to be charged before hand? If the second choice, what is the duration of the charge?
- The spell list seemed kind of bare, but at the same point, the character is designed to outlast others, and heal after the combat is over. Honestly, the Stone Foci gives me more passive abilities than anything else, or constant abilities. the Rock Throwing/Acid Touch combination is pretty durable, for at time the rocks are doing 2d4+3+1d6[acid] damage per rock. And with two of those a round at +13/+8 to hit, that is decent enough. And the ammunition can be pretty much anything on the ground really.
- The curses seem a little off. The Deaf curse is kind of rough for a player - the group I am with is getting a little irate over it, but at the same point I dislike the meta-game. Finding that balance might not be easy for alot of folk. Now look at the vision, and it gets a little confusing. Lame means that there is some minor issues, but they get pretty nice later on.
- At first glance, some of my equipment might seem a little out of place. Please notice that I did take the Light spell, but carry four potions of Light. This is mostly for handing off the light and not using an Orison. While I get unlimited use of them, I think it would be better suited for my weapon or shield. The potion is to put on an enemy or an item that I am leaving behind. Another questionable part was the choice between taking the Dwarven Full Plate, or making a more powerful shield. In the end I opted for the Dwarven, just so I have some means of soaking damage.

Alright, as I have been involved in a playtest of higher level (14th) and am playing an Oracle of Stone, I figured I would toss out what I have learned.

First off, regarding the spells - Yes, the Healing is slightly limited in compared to the cleric. But, what cleric has the ability to cast a non-prepared remove spell multiple times a day? The spell list is up to the player to put together. in example, my spell list is a majority of cure and status ailment removal. And that was just because it makes sense to me - a healer that can swap a Cure spell to rid a party member of a curse, blindness, deafness or other affliction? Very worth it.
Yes, the spell list is limited at the moment. But I believe APG will solve that with some more spells. That said - the basic cleric list contains enough to get by with. You want to deal damage, build the oracle that way. Battle Foci and some nifty feat work will allow that.

Next up is the Foci themselves. Yes, the Battle one seems beastly (And is) when you first look at it. But the others also gain some nifty tricks as they progress. Take Clobbering Strike in the Stone Foci - whenever you score a critical hit against an opponent with an attack spell, you can trip as a free action. Seems a little underpowered, right? Add in that some spells allow multiple attacks, or that most of them are ranged touch. So you have spells that can trip on a very rare chance - imagine that ability from longer distances. There are a few others, but as the Stone Foci is the one I am most familiar with, I will stick within it.

Now onto the curses. I am currently playing a deaf Oracle. This does mean I cannot hear - so I am already immune to a good number of spells for will, because they require that I hear the caster. Enthrall is completely useless, as are a number of charm spells. Anything with the sonic descriptor needs to be looked at and go "Will it work against them?" Now, It also brings into effect another thought - since the bonus languages assume you speak them, do you have the ability to read lips, or is it total deafness?
I was torn to between a few of the curses, so let me explain how i viewed them. The vision curse means you have 'muddy vision', but when your vision bonuses go out to longer than your normal vision, think of using other senses. Maybe your hearing is what is giving you the darkvision, like echolocation. Lame - one I *almost* took, this is going to be very powerful in combination with the Battle Foci. The ability to wear heavy armor and move at 25 ft/round is nasty, even if it kicks in at 10th level. Wasting is a problem, excepting that the character gets immunity boosts. So your hard to look at. Honestly, the Tongues was a problem for me to even consider - you speak in tongues during times of stress. But you gain additional languages? Kind of useless, until 10th level.
My only real qualms was the fact that I had to burn out two feats in order to get heavy armor. It has an amazing ability to cast without Arcane Spell Failure, so make use of that. Maybe give it heavier armor as the levels progress?

Now onto actual rules bits -

Mighty Pebble - Does this ability mean that the stone is thrown as part of the standard action, or does it have to wait until another round to be thrown. If it is the second choice, what is the duration on the charge?

Rock Throwing - Does this combine with the Mighty Pebble ability? In such case, does it deal the Mighty Pebble's elemental power AND the base rock damage?

Crystal Sight - The ability is measured in rounds, not minutes. Typo, or is that supposed to occur. It seems a little weak compared to Earth Glide, which lasts minutes on the level.

Steelbreaker Skin - does this ability also work with the 'natural' weapons like claws, bites and a monks unarmed attack?