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I found this faq about a Magus's Spell Combat(Ex) Ability.

Spell Combat(Ex)

At 1st level, a magus learns to cast spells and wield his weapons at the same time. This functions much like two-weapon fighting, but the off-hand weapon is a spell that is being cast. To use this ability, the magus must have one hand free (even if the spell being cast does not have somatic components), while wielding a light or one-handed melee weapon in the other hand. As a full-round action, he can make all of his attacks with his melee weapon at a –2 penalty and can also cast any spell from the magus spell list with a casting time of 1 standard action (any attack roll made as part of this spell also takes this penalty). If he casts this spell defensively, he can decide to take an additional penalty on his attack rolls, up to his Intelligence bonus, and add the same amount as a circumstance bonus on his concentration check. If the check fails, the spell is wasted, but the attacks still take the penalty. A magus can choose to cast the spell first or make the weapon attacks first, but if he has more than one attack, he cannot cast the spell between weapon attacks.


Magus: When using spell combat, can the weapon in my other hand be an unarmed strike or a natural weapon?

Yes, so long as the weapon is a light or one-handed melee weapon and is associated with that hand. For example, unarmed strikes, claws, and slams are light melee weapons associated with a hand, and therefore are valid for use with spell combat. A tail slap is not associated with a hand, and therefore is not valid for use with spell combat.

I think a ruling like this justifies that the suli's elemental assault can be used with claw attacks associated with the hand.

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Halek wrote:
Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:

Mount is not a variable summon monster spell. Alter Summon Monster can only change a monster into another choice allowed by the spell.

Mount HAS no other choices to be switched into.

Here is the text of the spell.

You swap a creature summoned by a conjuration (summoning) spell for a creature you could summon with a summon monster or summon nature's ally spell. The new creature must be an option from a spell of the same level or lower as the spell that summoned the target. The new creature cannot be summoned into an environment that cannot support it. The target can attempt a Will saving throw to negate this effect, but if the target is under your control, it receives no saving throw. Alter summoned monster does not alter the duration of the spell that summoned the target, nor does it affect any additional creatures summoned by the same spell as the target. The new creature has the same conditions and amount of damage as the target creature, and remains affected by all curses, diseases, poisons, and penalties that affected the target, but no other spells or effects carry over. Alter summoned monster is a spell of the same alignment type or types as the creature for which you exchange the target. An eidolon can't be targeted by this spell.

You swap a creature from a conjuration summoning spell (which mount is) for a creature that you could summon with a summon monster spell of the same level or lower.

I am not seeing any requirements that the original spell be a variable summon monster spell. Where are you reading that?

Your basically swapping out for a creature of the same lvl or lower from the summon monster/summon nature ally's list. That means its under the same restrictions as if you would have summoned the creature actually using one of those spells. That means no using it to summon other creatures, teleporting/plane shifting and most importantly no wishes.

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swordfalcon wrote:

OK, I got this. This is all first party, Paizo, and no rolling or favorable conditions for this to happen. First off you want to play vanilla/unchained summoner with the Synthesist Archetype. I would choose half-elf for the class race for the favored class bonus 1/4 evolution point. Then by 13th level you want both Weapon Training(4 evolution points) for proficiency with your favored martial weapon and then the Large evolution to go huge size(10 evolution points). After that your going to want +1 Impact magic weapon, since everyone is using great sword we will go with a +1 Impact great sword. Then during battle you have your Summoner Synthesist cast enlarge person on himself making him gargantuan. Being gargantuan plus having an impact weapon will put you into dealing colossal weapon size damage. If you are using a great sword that is 8d6 worth of damage, add in the vital strike feat chain to increase it and have boat loads of fun.

P.S. Dipping into other classes, certain specific magic items from other APs, and other items I am not aware maybe able to increase the weapon size or damage dice of the weapon.

edit, for all intents and purposes I forgot to mention it would be a huge +1 impact weapon for the initial size of the weapon when wielded by the Synthisest at 13th lvl. But if you are looking for how to transport the melee weapon when you are not in your fused eidolon armor, look into the magic weapon special abilities: Resizing(Giant Hunter's Handbook) or Shrinking(Melee Tactics Toolbox.) Both are flat cost magic bonuses and will not eat into +10 enhancement bonus cap for weapons.

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KotC ChaiGuy wrote:
With the increased strength score I'm not sure if you're still worried about encumbrance. If you are you could get muleback-cords, they let you treat your carrying capacity as if your strength was 8 higher, so you could carry up to 133 pounds as a light load rater than 43 pounds. The MBC are also only 1000 gold, about half the price of the bag of holding and handy haversack.

Yea, your right about that, plus my gm ruled I have to use my own Str stat in order to qualify for power attack, hence why I had to switch some of my stat numbers around. Dex is now my dump stat instead of Str.

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Casual Viking wrote:
Claxon wrote:

This thread has just gotten incredibly ridiculous.

People care too damn much about RAW instead of RAI.

Regardless of your animal companions intelligence, it needs tricks and you need to use handle animal on it. That's the bottom line.

Yes, asserting an opinion, one that is IMO bad for the game, is certainly going to convince the people using arguments.

Swordfalcon wrote:

No matter if you try to define it any other way these are the definitions and rules for companions. Trying to argue that raising an animal's INT by 3 makes it a sentient companion and not subject to the handle animal rules is pointless, it is already addressed in the rules.
As I have already pointed out, the rules contradict themselves within the same chapter, on p. 140 vs. p. 143. There is no reason to claim that p. 143 is "more rules" than p. 140. For all the reasons I have already stated, and which haven't been counterargued yet, p. 140 should take precedence in the conflict.

I see no contradictions or problems with rules I have quoted. The rules for handling regular animal companions are quite clear. The only exception to the that rule is Paladin bonded mounts. Off course this how I interpret the rules, someone else I am sure will argue different. Then this will become the cliche RAW vs RAI argument, I think the thread already has. I have said all I needed to say.

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Ok let me sum up what is in the rules of the Companion section of the PRD.

Nonsentient Companions: A nonsentient companion (one with animal-level intelligence) is loyal to you in the way a well-trained dog is—the creature is conditioned to obey your commands, but its behavior is limited by its intelligence and it can't make altruistic moral decisions—such as nobly sacrificing itself to save another. Animal companions, cavalier mounts, and purchased creatures (such as common horses and guard dogs) fall into this category. In general they're GM-controlled companions. You can direct them using the Handle Animal skill, but their specific behavior is up to the GM.

Sentient Companions: A sentient companion (a creature that can understand language and has an Intelligence score of at least 3) is considered your ally and obeys your suggestions and orders to the best of its ability. It won't necessarily blindly follow a suicidal order, but it has your interests at heart and does what it can to keep you alive. Paladin bonded mounts, familiars, and cohorts fall into this category, and are usually player-controlled companions.

Eidolons: Outside the linear obedience and intelligence scale of sentient and nonsentient companions are eidolons: intelligent entities magically bound to you. Whether you wish to roleplay this relationship as friendly or coerced, the eidolon is inclined to obey you unless you give a command only to spite it. An eidolon would obey a cruel summoner's order to save a child from a burning building, knowing that at worst the fire damage would temporarily banish it, but it wouldn't stand in a bonfire just because the summoner said to. An eidolon is normally a player-controlled companion, but the GM can have the eidolon refuse extreme orders that would cause it to suffer needlessly.

Intelligent Animals

Increasing an animal's Intelligence to 3 or higher means it is smart enough to understand a language. However, unless an awaken spell is used, the animal doesn't automatically and instantly learn a language, any more than a human child does. The animal must be taught a language, usually over the course of months, giving it the understanding of the meaning of words and sentences beyond its trained responses to commands like "attack" and "heel."

Even if the animal is taught to understand a language, it probably lacks the anatomy to actually speak (unless awaken is used). For example, dogs, elephants, and even gorillas lack the proper physiology to speak humanoid languages, though they can use their limited "vocabulary" of sounds to articulate concepts, especially if working with a person who learns what the sounds mean.

An intelligent animal is smart enough to use tools, but might lack the ability to manipulate them. A crow could be able to use simple lockpicks, but a dog can't. Even if the animal is physically capable of using a tool, it might still prefer its own natural body to manufactured items, especially when it comes to weapons. An intelligent gorilla could hold or wield a sword, but its inclination is to make slam attacks. No amount of training (including weapon proficiency feats) is going to make it fully comfortable attacking in any other way.

Even if an animal's Intelligence increases to 3 or higher, you must still use the Handle Animal skill to direct the animal, as it is a smart animal rather than a low-intelligence person (using awaken is an exception—an awakened animal takes orders like a person). The GM should take the animal's Intelligence into account when determining its response to commands or its behavior when it doesn't have specific instructions. For example, an intelligent wolf companion can pick the weakest-looking target if directed to do so, and that same wolf trapped in a burning building might push open a door or window without being told.

No matter if you try to define it any other way these are the definitions and rules for companions. Trying to argue that raising an animal's INT by 3 makes it a sentient companion and not subject to the handle animal rules is pointless, it is already addressed in the rules. above. As per the rules of pathfinder a GM may decide to allow or not allow certain parts of these rules or even modify them to fit their own campaign. But this is at the GM's whim and should be taken as such. For all those out there trying to say different this is their opinion and not the official rules.

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Regular NPC cohorts recruited via leadership feat

Cohort Level: You can attract a cohort of up to this level. Regardless of your Leadership score, you can only recruit a cohort who is two or more levels lower than yourself. The cohort should be equipped with gear appropriate for its level (see Creating NPCs). A cohort can be of any race or class. The cohort's alignment may not be opposed to your alignment on either the law/chaos or good/evil axis, and you take a –1 penalty to your Leadership score if you recruit a cohort of an alignment different from your own.

A cohort does not count as a party member when determining the party's XP. Instead, divide the cohort's level by your level. Multiply this result by the total XP awarded to you, then add that number of experience points to the cohort's total.

If a cohort gains enough XP to bring it to a level one lower than your level, the cohort does not gain the new level—its new XP total is 1 less than the amount needed to attain the next level.

Special Cohorts & Companions(magical beast cohorts fit in here)

Some characters garner the aid of particularly powerful, intelligent, or magical creatures to serve them. A character must have the Leadership feat in order to enlist such a creature.

The following examples are some of the most common monstrous cohorts and where the stats for each can be found, as well as the creature's effective cohort level for the purpose of determining a character's requisite Leadership score and character level in order to enlist the aid of the creature.

Just for the record, if I was a GM I would allow the magical beast cohort to have a regular npc WBL because, one it isn't very much to begin with, not to mention the PC with leadership is gonna find his finances stretched a little too much(as pointed out by Claxon in an earlier post) trying to outfit both himself and his cohort.

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'Sani wrote:
Anyone saying that a Winter Wolf wouldn't know the concept for tools or money should read about the Howlings district in Whitethrone, Irrisen. The Winter Wolves there (thanks to Baba Yaga) can walk around in human form, wear clothes, buy things from merchants, and generally engage in human behavior. Except with the occasional killing and eating of someone who pisses them off because human form or not they are still Winter Wolves.

I'll recant the part about the concept for not understanding tools and money, but unless the winter wolf has some kind of outside assistance(Baba Yaga for example who is a spell caster,) winter wolves in their true form do not have a way earning nor spending money by normal means nor can they use humanoid tools because their physical form prevents this. Although I find this point moot or redundant because it can easily be overcome with gm fiat.

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Well, generally speaking when using the leadership feat to get a cohort, it is considered a npc, no matter if the cohort is one of the regular pathfinder races with normal class lvls or a magical beast that will gain class lvls via leadership rules.

According to the character advancement table found in the core rule book, a regular 9th lvl npc will have a starting wealth of 7,800gp(regular gear, magic items, consumables, etc are included in this.)

But this would only apply to a regular npc and not a magical beast cohort which could be argued would have no concept of money much less of a way of purchasing it. On the other hand one could argue this would be the allowance a PC with leadership gets for outfitting the cohort with gear and such. Considering it could be argued either way makes it completely up to the GM's discretion.

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I sense a role playing opportunity. First lets forget about the slavery part. Like Claxon said a lawful good paladin enslaving an evil aligned demon/outsider is not really fitting. But their are ways around this.

Why not use leadership. Have the GM set it up to where the paladin and his allies have to fight an evil demon/outsider. If the paladin manages to defeat and not kill the evil aligned enemy, agree to spare it if it will change and renounce its evil ways. Having been moved by the paladin's gesture, the demon agrees and becomes a monstrous cohort and changes its alignment to lawful good. The Paladin agrees to this because it give him a chance to reform the demon and also keep an eye on it.

This is possible, because according to the rules in the bestiary stat block rules

Alignment, Size, and Type: While a monster's size and type remain constant (unless changed by the application of templates or other unusual modifiers), alignment is far more fluid. The alignments listed for each monster in this book represent the norm for those monsters—they can vary as you require them to in order to serve the needs of your campaign. Only in the case of relatively unintelligent monsters (creatures with an Intelligence of 2 or lower are almost never anything other than neutral) and planar monsters (outsiders with alignments other than those listed are unusual and typically outcasts from their kind) is the listed alignment relatively unchangeable.

A couple other ideas with leadership, is that the paladin somehow comes across a demon/devil that is an outcast of its kind due to its alignment. Another is set up a game/pact between the paladin and demon/devil. Basically the demon/devil takes an interest in the paladin and agrees to become a cohort and lend him its powers and maintain a lawful good alignment as long as the paladin stays true to his paladin code, but should the paladin stray or fall the demon/devil wins and gets his soul, the paladin has to become an anti-paladin or something along those lines. Again I see a lot of potential with this.

The only problem is can you find a monstrous companion that fits this roll. If not maybe the gm can find a suitable demon/devil creature in the bestiaries and give it an effective cohort lvl based on the stats and CR of other official monstrous companions listed.

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Sorry to burst your bubble, but the mounted skirmisher feat and spirited charge feat will not combo with each other, and it is due to a recent FAQ and charge rules.

Mounted Combat: When making a charge while mounted, which creature charges? The rider or the mount?

Both charge in unison, suffer the same penalty to AC, the gaining the same bonus to the attack rolls and following all other rules for the charge. The mounted combat rules are a little unclear on this. Replace the third paragraph under the "Combat while Mounted" section on page 202 with the following text. Note that a "mounted charge" is synonymous with a "charge while mounted," and that when a lance is "when used from the back of a charging mount" it is during a mounted charge not when only the mount charges.

A mounted charge is a charge made by you and your mount. During a mounted charge, you deal double damage with your first melee attack made with a lance or with any weapon if you have Spirited Charge (or a similar effect), or you deal triple damage with a lance and Spirited Charge.

This change will be reflected in future printings of the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook

Basically a mounted charge is considered a full round action and you only are able to make a single melee attack at the end of it, just like a normal charge. If you have your mount charge and you are mounted on it, you yourself can chose not to charge with it, but you do not gain any of the benefits because 'you' yourself are not charging. That means no mounted charge has taken place, which means no triple damage from a lance attack from the spirited charge feat. The only advantage the mounted skirmisher feat gives is that it allows your mount to take more than a 5-ft step and still lets you take a full round attack. You can not take a full round attack action if you charge because you are already doing a full round action by charging. There are exceptions to this rule like pounce and the mounted blade feat. Mounted Skirmisher is not pounce. And mounted charging does not equal 'your mount moves its speed or less.' They are considered two different types of movement by pathfinder rules. Here is a link to another board that is has been discussed on, it explains it in more detail.

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As per the rules concerning dragon breath weapons.

Breath Weapon (Su): Using a breath weapon is a standard action. A dragon can use its breath weapon once every 1d4 rounds, even if it possesses more than one breath weapon. A breath weapon always starts at an intersection adjacent to the dragon and extends in a direction of the dragon's choice. Breath weapons come in two shapes, lines and cones, whose areas vary with the dragon's size. If a breath weapon deals damage, those caught in the area can attempt Reflex saves to take half damage. The save DC against a breath weapon is 10 + 1/2 dragon's HD + dragon's Con modifier. Saves against various breath weapons use the same DC; the type of saving throw is noted in the variety descriptions. A dragon can use its breath weapon when it is grappling or being grappled.

And as stated above pinned is just a more severe version of grapple.

My question is how is your war priest even grappling a huge dragon and expecting to succeed each round to maintain the grapple. Huge dragons from what I have seen in the bestiaries usually have a CMD of around 40 give or take. Even succeeding once in a grappling check with one would be lucky.

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Hmm wrote:

Hey this is Hmm, Zahra's player. I'm posting again to talk more about dragon-style and why it's great for tigers.

If you can get that int raised early (via the 4th level attribute bonus and boon companion), you can take improved unarmed strike which opens up both improved grapple and dragon style combat. It allows your tiger to charge through both difficult terrain and allies. At later levels, when the tiger gets pounce, this ability becomes fantastic. The issue with dragon style is planning. You need three ranks of acrobatics to take it, and animal companions get very few skill points.

Humans, half-elves, half-orcs and aasimar with scion of humanity trait can all add skill ranks to their animal companions via the hunter FCB.

Not to be a wet blanket, but aren't unarmed strikes and natural weapons considered two different things. Wouldn't a tiger's claws and bite attacks be considered natural weapons and not unarmed strikes by the rules. The wording found in the feral combat training feat would seam to support this. Depending how your dm rules, your tiger comapion may have to take feral combat training in order utilize the last benefit of the dragon style combat feat.

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Bandw2 wrote:
swordfalcon wrote:
Claxon wrote:

Well, I would strongly disagree that the mount is included in "you".

And this is why mounted combat rules really need an overhaul. Because honestly, they're not well written. I think the design team is aware of this, but also doesn't know what to do with them either.

I have to agree ride-by attack only allows for the rider not the mount to attack and then move again. This strictly written in the rules and is not even RAW VS RAI issue. I wish people would stop twisting the rules or adding to them just because they want something their way.

because i've totally ever even tried to make a mounted character.

the feat doesn't work if the "you" doesn't include the mount, unless you use your movement after the attack to dismount.

Mounted Combat Rules Section.

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

Ride-by-Attack feat

When you are mounted and use the charge action, you may move and attack as if with a standard charge and then move again (continuing the straight line of the charge). Your total movement for the round can't exceed double your mounted speed. You and your mount do not provoke an attack of opportunity from the opponent that you attack.

Based on this two things the feat does work. "You" does not include the mount, but the person who has the feat. "You" move at its speed, as long as the mount does not attack it can keep on going after "you" have made the attack during the charge utilizing the benefits of the ride-by attack feat. Should the mount attack, the benefits gained from having the ride-by attack become null and useless. I don't see what is so hard to understand about this.

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OK thanks for the clarification guys. This has been a big help.

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gustavo iglesias wrote:
WPharolin wrote:
I honestly don't understand the idea that the player should be held to some kind of standard of fun for other players. Don't misunderstand me, everyone should be having fun and the disparity is a problem. But not one caused by the player. It was caused by the DM. He gave away a truck load of money and didn't give any spending guidelines. He even approved the choices that were made.

Yep, I agree that it's the GM who botched the issue. Giving nearly 1 million gold coins to a 7th lvl party isn't going to end well. Approving a CR15 construct for a 7th lvl party isn't a good idea.

However, if the player would be really trying to build what he says he tries to build, that wouldn't be an issue. Nobody would care if he has a shield guardian that protect him in the rear. The problem is that his "guardian" does 24d8+90, at lvl 7, with the average CR7 creature having 85hp and AC 20. Even then, it could not be a problem, if everybody in the table agree and have fun with that kind of play, and everybody is honest about how they want to play the campaign. Overpowered campaigns can be fun too, there's nothing wrong with that. You can have fun doing CR15 damage at lvl 7, both because obliterating CR7 encounters can be fun, and because you can try to face CR15 encounters, which are really hard for your level and you can have fun with said challenge.

The problem comes because:

1) it's not true that everybody in the table agree and have fun

2) There isn't honesty about the issue. The OP tries to hide the truth, which is that he wants a 6 armed killing machine able to kill twice per round his average CR foe. If he didn't want a 6 armed killing machine with blades instead of hands, he wouldn't had spent (by his own words) lot of time preparing that char, discussing and brainstorming options, planning and dessigning it, and going as far as to open a thread in the advice forum asking for ways to improve his construct's damage. A standard construct with...

Yea the DM gave too much gold to the entire party, strz took advantage of this and created something that was totally overpowered for the parties' entire lvl and cr.

I have no problem with a player min/maxing their characters, had strz done this the legit way, without all the money then I wouldn't care how unfair the bloodrager whined. Each player should be able to run and play their character as they see fit. Now don't get me wrong you should still try to cooperate with the party, because no one player should be able to handle 100% of the situations and circumstances that arise when playing a pathfinder module or AP. But come on no player should have to hold back just because they designed a better character than someone else. Take for example the wizard, it is the top rated class on most people's list just because a how versatile it is. Heck especially at later lvls the wizard class can do just about anything a specialized class can do just as well if not better, including buffing, melee, range and even summoning. Now can playing such a class all the time get boring, yeah.

When a game loses its challenge than it gets boring for most people. When a gm pulls stuff like what is described is this message board thread, what's the point of evening playing. The whole point of playing pathfinder is to just have fun, and half of that is having a challenge. Heck I am the rule nazi of my group and I am not even the DM. I have been told to shut it quite a few times by my group, even when I prove I am right. That really made me mad, until one player in our group pointed out the main rule of pathfinder and that is to have fun. Basically what I am trying to say is this, both the gm and the players have to work together to make the game fun and if you concentrate to much on the rules or letting the group have access to something that they are not supposed to have or be able to do at a certain lvl, the fun is taken out of the game.

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My friend, you want power, then I will give you 4 feats that can give that to you.

Here they are:

Skill Focus: Survival (a prerequisite for the eldritch heritage feats)

Eldritch feats with the orc bloodline as the focus

Eldritch Heritage: Touch of Rage (Sp): At 1st level, you can touch a creature as a standard action, giving it a morale bonus on attack rolls, damage rolls, and Will saving throws equal to 1/2 your sorcerer level (minimum 1) for 1 round. You can use this ability a number of times per day equal to 3 + your Charisma modifier.

Improved Eldritch Heritage(11th level or higher): Strength of the Beast (Ex): At 9th level, you gain a +2 inherent bonus to your Strength. This bonus increases to +4 at 13th level, and to +6 at 17th level.

Greater Eldritch Heritage (17th level or higher): Power of Giants (Sp): At 15th level, you may grow to Large size as a standard action. At this size you gain a +6 size bonus to Strength, a –2 penalty to Dexterity, a +4 size bonus to Constitution, and a +4 natural armor bonus. You may return to your normal size as a standard action. You may remain in this size for up to 1 minute per character level per day; this duration does not need to be consecutive, but it must be used in 1 minute increments.

Be sure to check out the feats in more detail because they require to have a high charisma score to have access to them which I think you have already according to your stats. At level 17 if you get that high, by using power of the giants this feat line will grant you +12 to your strength plus give you a natural reach as a bonus as well as other things.

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gotta I love this guide, it overs a way for players to get a dragon companion without it being op and offers very detailed spec and directions.