Kelim Esteban

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Lune, you are oversimplifying matters. It isn't that obvious. Berating the people who wanted a clear explanation is juvenile bandwagoning.

There are many items that benefit different characters differently. A paladin gets a different benefit from a Headband of Charisma than a sorcerer. If Gauntlets +1 don't help your character, sell them or give them to a party member that does benefit from them like you do with every piece of loot you've ever acquired in your adventuring career(s). That argument is not convincing.

Saying that the signifigant gap in the price of items that effectively grant the same benefit changes the dynamic of the game is more convincing.

Also, you have an overinflated sense of how fragile the Pathfinder game is.

It is robust.

It can handle odd numbered enhancement bonuses without "breaking".

I know this because it can handle characters with all 16s, 17s and 18s for stats and max hit points. It can handle min-maxers and role-purists. It can handle parties of 8. I've experienced these firsthand as both a player and as a DM.

Ashiel makes several good arguments for why odd numbered enhancement bonuses would be a good idea. Many others (SKR included) provided great reasons why they aren't a good idea especially in the context of large scale play.

People don't get to be "rules gurus" without rigorously questioning the rules. So don't berate people for their close examination of the rules. The only tabletop RPG I play is Pathfinder. I don't need to be berated for wanting to understand how it was made.

Sean K Reynolds wrote:

Because odd scores are used as feat prerequisites.

Because odd scores are one 4th-level bump away from being even scores.

Basically, because (1) the core ability score mechanic in the game recognizes that you only get bonuses at even numbers, and (2) you're using a die-rolling or point-buy mechanic for ability scores that give you both odd and even numbers. So the system has most of the benefits on the even numbers, and accepts that you're going to have some odd numbers, and by forcing you to accept those odd numbers, it makes you plan your character for about more than just the here and now, but for the character's future.

Odd number N is much better than even number N-1 and not good as even number N+1. When you introduce a magic item that turns N into N+1, it's giving you N+1 for the price of N, which is a bad thing.

Thank you for this clear explanation. This is all I needed. It is a much better explanation than "it's always been this way so there is PROBABLY a reason for it".

ciretose wrote:
You also can only ever get 5 ability boosts in your career aside from Tomes, so the total is actually +10.

I don't follow. You get 5 stat points over 20 levels and up to a +5 in any stat you buy the tome/manual for. Not sure how that equals 10. You'd be better off spacing out your stat increases to end up at odd stats to maximize the effect of the tomes.

ciretose wrote:
Odd number scores are cheaper because they provide little short term benefit, but are helpful when planning long term. It is one of the limits of the game.

There are plenty of things that limit a game. A GM has control over the amount of money a character has and what that character has access to.

There is always opportunity cost. If characters save up and buy +1 stat items at early level, they are sacrificing other options to do so. They may get that extra +1 modifier in a key stat, but they give up other options to do so. That's balance, not power creep.

Joana, those are some good reasons.

To nitpick, there are a few things that are affected independant of ability modifier (like carrying capacity).

Also, the same amount of ability drain does different things to different characters, just like (the opposite of) an odd enhancement bonus. Whether it's a +3 belt o' strength or 3 points of ability drain, it has a different effect on PCs with 14 and 15 strength.

I could see how the +1 stat item could throw off the curve a little in early levels, but beyond that, it only smooths out the curve (as Ashiel says up-post).

If you're playing the game to the max, you'd want odd stats anyway because the Tomes go to +5.

Yes, I understand what you're saying.

My question is: If every character can do this, how is it unfair?

ciretose wrote:
Quite simply, because it gives an unfair advantage to characters who have odd numbered ability scores, which cost significantly less on point buy.

But any character can have an odd ability score. It's not as if half the PCs in a group are going to have secret knowledge of the existence of +1 stat gear. Everyone (GM included) has access to the same equipment and has the same information.

If everyone wants to build their characters with odd stats, let them. They're making an assumption that they will be able to afford the items and have to survive with "wasted" points in odd stats until they can actually buy these items.

If your DM allows it, you can use the Quicken Spell-like Ability feat at like 9th level to quicken your minor magic Acid Orb. Makes you really want to win initiative or use Invis potions (or maybe take major magic [Vanish]).

Sean K Reynolds wrote:
No, because we understand why it's that way in 3E. ... And this was a deliberate decision, not something the designers forgot to include in the game.

That's great. We'd like to have this understanding as well. If it's not too much troule, could you please share the developer's innate understanding of the 3E rules that made it so obvious to you and them that odd-numbered enhancement bonus granting items should be omitted.

I'm feeling pretty dense, because it's not clear to me why such an item shouldn't exist.

"It's always been this way" is a flawed reason to continue doing something. It stifles innovation. If, after reexamining balance and gameplay, the reasons for a lack of odd-numbered enhancement bonuses still stand, then keep them out. Otherwise, why not let them in?

Sean K Reynolds wrote:
Perhaps you should instead look at it as, "why, in the 12 year lifespan of 3rd edition D&D + Pathfinder, has there never been an official product from Wizards or Paizo that has an odd-plus ability score boosting item? If the intent was that such a thing is allowed, why is that unexplored game niche still left alone by the game designers?"

This is a good question, one I'd like to hear a game developer weigh in on. Was this void considered during the creation of Pathfinder?

We can discuss pros and cons in this threads all we want, but it'd be nice to hear what a developer actually has to say about the odd-numbered enhancement bonus, or even a few reasons why it was left out.

Maerimydra wrote:

StreamOfTheSky wrote:

Martiln wrote:

I don't complain too much about feat tax. If I did, my 2 hand Deadly Stroke fighter would have been an idea that I just tossed out the window because hey, dazzling display? Waste of a feat.


** spoiler omitted **

At the exact same level and for only the cost of 2 feats, you could have had...

** spoiler omitted **

3x damage instead of 2x and no situational restrictions or set up time at all.

Hope that 1 con bleed was super helpful to you...

Maybe I'm reading it wrong, but isn't double normal damage better than triple weapon damage? What does normal damage mean anyway? :\

In the vast majority of cases, dealing double damage and 1 Con bleed would be worse for an enemy than triple weapon damage. If the wielder had little bonus damage added on, the the Vital Strike might be close to the Deadly Stroke (if by 12th level the fighter doesn't have at least +7 bonus to damage... unlikely).

You get more damage with Deadly Stroke, but it is feat intensive and situational. You can capitalize on teamwork or archetypes to increase the likelihood of getting your Deadly Stroke ("Interference" from the Free Hand fighter variant works well).

I have to agree that Combat Expertise is a feat tax, but it opens up plenty of useful feat trees. There are situations where a PC with Combat Expertise will use it (going totally defensive), but I've rarely seen it used during the normal course of combat.

The bigger argument here is whether or not it's fair to have to take "worse" feats to open up "better" ones later (Greater Trip, Deadly Stroke, etc). That boils down to whether it's good for the game to sacrifice power early on in a character's career to be more powerful later.

As others have said, fighters get a ton of feats. The feats don't all have to be powerhouses on their own. They can afford a few duds, if those duds open up cool/fun/potent options later.

To the OP: It's ok to not like Combat Expertise. In your games, you should just remove it as a requisite. You should try to convince the friends you play with to do the same. There's not really a need to get on the forums and criticize someone who knows more about the game than you do. As evidenced by the replies, people have had drastically different experiences with Combat Expertise. A game designer isn't going to make everyone happy all the time. That's not his job. He's making an option that will appeal to SOME of the players (not you, obviously).

I've used it in my most recent campaign and it works great.
As stated before, it gives low level creatures a boost, but makes high level play more dangerous.

I love it that an axe or gun crit will be almost enough to kill a PC. My players play smarter and do less ridiculous stuff.

It also works great in a low magic setting since PCs regain all their vigor after a night of rest. But they can still have lingering wounds! It's so awesome!

Thanks for all your input.

While the wording on feral mutagen does indeed make it sound like it applies automatically, as a GM I don't think the alchemist forgets how to make a mutagen without the feral component.

...but it seems your argument is that the discovery effects the alchemist's anatomy, not the mutagen itself... interesting.

The money cost is a good limiting factor. As far as Int damage, the alchemist can remedy that with an extract or by preparing his mutagens well ahead of time.

Thanks again!


Ok, so here are some references in preface to my question:

Mutagen: alchemist can gain the effects of another
alchemist’s mutagen if he drinks it. (Although if the other
alchemist creates a different mutagen, the effects of the
“stolen” mutagen immediately cease.)

Infuse Mutagen Discovery:
When the alchemist creates a mutagen,
he can infuse it with an extra bit of his own magical
power. This inflicts 2 points of Intelligence damage
to the alchemist and costs 1,000 gp in rare reagents,
but the mutagen created persists on its own and is not
rendered inert if the alchemist creates another mutagen.

This allows an alchemist to create different types of
mutagens and keep them handy for emergencies. This
does not allow an alchemist to gain the effects of multiple
mutagens—only the most recently imbibed mutagen has
any effect.

The scenario:
There is a 12th level alchemist (Fred) and 1st level alchemist/11th level barbarian (Hank) in the same party. Fred has the Infuse Mutagen, Feral Mutagen and Greater Mutagen discoveries. He creates both a greater feral mutagen and a greater non-feral mutagen.

Fred drinks his non-feral mutagen. Hank takes Fred's greater feral mutagen and drinks it.

What happens?

Thanks for your help!

"Are you sure we should risk meeting..."
"Those fools don't suspect a thing..."
"When are you going to deliver on your end of the bargain? After all, I took X risk to do Y for you." X and Y being recognizable as previous encounters to the PCs.
"Since we're allies, I want to avoid confrontations between our forces..."

Counter - To use a slow to counter haste, you'd have to have an action readied to do so. According to the Corerule Book pg 203

Readying to Counterspell: You may ready a counterspell against a spellcaster (often with the trigger “if she starts casting a spell”). In this case, when the spellcaster starts a spell, you get a chance to identify it with a Spellcraft check (DC 15 + spell level). If you do, and if you can cast that same spell (and are able to cast it and have it prepared, if you prepare spells), you can cast the spell as a counterspell and automatically ruin the other spellcaster’s
spell. Counterspelling works even if one spell is divine and the other arcane.
A spellcaster can use dispel magic to counterspell another spellcaster, but it doesn’t always work.

it would take haste, slow, dispel magic or greater dispel magic to counter haste (or slow).

Confusion arises from this piece:

Core pg 209:
Spells with Opposite Effects: Spells with opposite effects apply normally, with all bonuses, penalties, or changes accruing in the order that they apply. Some
spells negate or counter each other. This is a special effect that is noted in a spell’s description.

So, what does it mean to negate another spell?

Negate/Dispel - Treat the spell (slow in this example) like dispel magic. Roll a check to dispel the effect (1d20+caster level). If you succeed, your spell removes their spell. If you fail, their spell remains.

SmiloDan! This is my favorite revamp of the warlock. I'm glad to see you've refined it a bit more.

Some nitpicks...
I think Eldritch Blast is considered an Invocation, so you don't need Quicken Invocation AND Quicken Eldritch Blast (and other similar Dark Secrets). It brings up some power issues when you consider widening Intensified Eldritch Cones and what not, but probably nothing too bad.

Since Dark Secrets are about equal to feats, I think the Extra Class skill should grant two bonus skills (a total of +6, putting it on par with Skill Focus and other skill boosting feats). Forbidden Knowledge could give three knowledge skills.

You should make the Advanced Hex have a requisite of having Hex (and Grand Hex needing Advanced Hex).

You should probably only be able to take Extra Energy Resistance once.

Your new Blast Shapes, etc are awesome.

I play in a group of six. Four of us (1 inquisitor) have Outflank. 3 of 4 of us have Gang Up and high crit weapons too. If we are "flanking" something, it won't survive for more than a round. It's devastating to our enemies. Anything on the ground never lasts long.

Beyond that particular feat... no, nothing else shines.

Can't a bard use Dirge of Doom + Lingering Song + a fear-inducing spell to make enemies frightened?

Dirge of Doom specifically says it can't make something go from shaken to frightened, but what if you use it first?

A 7th level bard could achieve this in one round (assuming it's legit).

Patcher wrote:
I don't see anything saying you can't select major hexes in the Extra Hex feat description.

Or take it at 19th to get a Grand Hex.

Matt Stitch wrote:
But you can't use a shield unless it's a buckler anyway

True, but I meant the Shield spell as Phasics mentions.

I recommend relying on armor and spells for defenses. I ran a group consisting of a pole-arm fighter, switch hitter ranger and magus against my group of 6 players (bad guys were +1 level and under geared). The magus lasted the longest and had a viable exit strategy to get away.

I agree with what The Grandfather says.

I can heal hit points from being hit a few more times after battle. I can't add more damage to monsters at that time. Relying on Strength frees up feats for other things (like Extra Pool or Exotic Weapon-Falcata).

I can't wait to play a magus from low level on up.

I plan to go Str over Dex.

You pick Shield, get to heavier armor and have spells like Vanish, Invisibility, Blur, Displacement and Greater Invisibility to avoid getting attacked. Int>Con>Str>Dex>Wis>Cha is how I'll do it.

I have no idea. I'm just kicking around ideas, hoping more creative people can pick them up and run with them.

I think I'd keep SR and just alter the way it works a bit. Damage dealing spells get reduced depending on what the caster would need to roll on a SR check. For example, if McWizard needs a 15 or higher to beat the SR of DR. Pit Fiend, he instead reduces the damage dealt by his Intensified Maximized Lightning Bolt by 75%. If he throws a Hold Monster at it, SR works normally... or maybe has its duration reduced by 75%.

Kinda works like the incorporeal trait, only with variable percentages.

To explain a bit better:
Magic Resistance that functions like Damage Reduction or Energy Resistance may sound good at first, but as wraithstrike says, this has no effect on non-damaging spells.

So how do we model a system where creatures are resilient to magic without Spell Resistance?

Giving monsters a bonus on saves vs. spells (like the Dwarven racial ability) is a simple solution, but still somewhat lacking. Also, how big of a bonus?

I was suggesting an idea that monsters be made with abilities similar to Evasion and Stalwart. If they fail a save, they get hit full on with the magic, but if they succeed, they negate the effect. Probably wouldn't want to have bonuses to saves on top of this or they'd evade out of everything.

wraithstrike wrote:
Most casters don't use damage dealing spells though if these boards are an indication of spell selection.

Perhaps simply a bonus on saves and more monsters with evasion and stalwart like abilities.

Set wrote:
The close wounds spell, from 3.5 (in the Spell Compendium, IIRC), is a great solution for this sort of thing.

+1. This is very true in my group. My groups put it on any spell list that has Cure Moderate Wounds. It really allows the clerics, inquisitors, druids, etc to provide a little helps to the team AND do their own thing.

I really liked what Pathfinder did with incorporeal (miss chance into % damage reduction).

Do you think Spell Resistance could be changed into a bonus on saves and/or maybe a % reduction on the damage taken by spells? Something similar to incorporealness.

Or maybe some kind of magic damage reduction?

Spell Combat wrote:
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 offhand weapon is a spell that is being cast. To use this ability, the magus must have one hand free, 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. 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 to 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. The magus must have one hand free to use this ability, even if the spell being cast does not contain somatic components.

I don't see why a magus couldn't get an extra attack with haste while using Spell Combat. It functions like two-weapon fighting. They get the extra attack too.

Add spell combat and haste and he has 6 attacks a round at 15th level.

Mike Schneider wrote:
If your Acrobatics are good enough, you don't need Mobility.

And if your AC is high enough, you don't need hit points. :)

Acrobatics checks to avoid AoO while moving through enemy threatened areas are much harder in Pathfinder. The bigger the creature, the further the reach AND the greater the CMD. The more you need to avoid the AoO, the harder it seems to be.

Also, Mobility opens up Spring Attack which negates the need to make the Acrobatics check against the target. Pretty handy. The +4 AC boost is nice after the nimble rogue inevitably fail an Acrobatics check. Now, I'll admit that Mobility isn't stellar on its own, but with all these considerations, it's a solid choice.

HeHateMe wrote:
Out of curiosity, does the Vital Strike feat damage stack with Sneak Attack? If so, I imagine that feat chain would be a good one for combat-oriented Rogues.

Depends on what you mean. You won't be doubling or tripling sneak attack dice, but you can make one attack using Vital Strike that is also a sneak attack (though this will probably only and a d6 or so, depending on the weapon).

Fortification is nice, but undead aren't immune to crits anymore.

I'm working on a consolidated invocation list: Warlock and Dragonfire Adept Invocations

Will be adding those from Complete Mage soon. EDIT: Done.

Good luck with those archetypes.

@SmiloDan ... wow. Simply put, this revision looks great. I'm blown away.

I could nitpick about a few things... allowing a class to be immune to 5 energy types, the potency of all those damage boosting Secrets, the necessity of cantrips when they get more invocations...

But forget that. This. is. awesome.

You could vary DR based on a pact theme. Fey pact grants DR x/cold iron (cold iron and lawful if it gets improved by the secret), Devil pact grants DR x/silver (and good), etc. You might also restrict certain Secrets and Invocations depending on the Pact (i.e. Hellfire isn't used by good warlocks).

Dang, this is a good update.

I play in a large group where three melee-oriented characters have Outflank and Gang Up (I have Gang Up and will be taking Outflank as soon as possible). The greatsword, court blade and falchion wielded by those three crit often enough to trigger combat ending series of AoO. After seeing it happen once, we do everything on our power to set it up in any combat.

The tank of the group uses Bodyguard and In Harm's Way constantly, keeping a fragile caster alive or upping allies' AC by a solid 2.

My character isn't a melee powerhouse, but I'll be getting up there and swinging some kind of keen weapon just to trigger my allies' Outflank (once I have it). Otherwise, I Aid Another when I don't have better actions to take (I can do it as a move, which is nice).

When an environment and/or foes allow, we try to do cool stuff with CMB like Sparta kicking enemies or bullrushing baddies through Walls of Fire or TKing weapons out of hands. The tank trips pretty decently, so once he gets Greater Trip, the Outflankers will be drooling.

With such a large group, Leadership has been disallowed.

To answer more generally: Yes, I think a group that doesn't employ teamwork is missing out. Maybe your group isn't being pushed to that level. Maybe you just handle your challenges too well. But nothing creates an atmosphere of fun like succeeding because you came together as a team.

If your team has one or two other dudes up in melee and you all take Outflank, the results can be devastating. Consider taking the Opportunist Advance Rogue Talent and Combat Reflexes as well. Opportunist may only trigger once per round, but Outflank + keen rapier means your flanking buddy will love you.

As a goblin rogue, you'll have high dex and small size to boost your AC. You'll also have 30 base speed. Consider the Spring Attack chain. You can weave in and out of combat until you want to settle in and deliver a few full rounds of sneak attacks. Dodge ups your AC too. If you ever plan on remaining in combat, Toughness is a must. Your favored class bonus should also be a hit point every level since you have tons of skills.

So feats like: Toughness, Dodge>Mobility>Spring Attack, Outflank (if your team supports this), Iron Will, Weapon Finesse (from rogue talent), Combat Reflexes, Vexing Flanker (from 3.5 if that's allowed), Defensive Combat Training.

Rogue talents like: Finesse Rogue, Combat Trick, Minor Magic, Major Magic (as Lorekeeper suggests), Opportunist, Bonus Feat.

If all those flanking feats are taken, you'll get a +6 bonus to attack when flanking. With that, you could even two weapon fight without the feat against a few foes. Opportunist and Combat Reflexes will give you 1 extra attack per foe who gets hit each round. Outflank will give you (or an ally) an extra attack against any flanked foe that gets critted on (or more if crits are chained).

I think an alchemist can fill a rogue's shoes well enough.

Extracts are sort of like potions that the alchemist prepares each day, except they only take a standard action to draw and drink. They must be prepared in advance and they have no spell failure.

Alchemists that focus on bombing do little else, though they can use poison effectively. So one option could be to start throwing poisoned weapons. Other alchemists focus on their mutagen and get all smashy.

Throw Anything grants a little bonus to an alchemist's bombs and other splash weapons (like holy water). You'd have to look up the improvised weapon rules to see what else your could do with it.

Eridan wrote:

Hello friends,

i have several questions regarding summoners riding on their eidolon. Eidolons are smarter than typical riding animals so they can act more freely and independent. Correct?

1) Is the summoner riding the eidolon with all possibilities, advantages and disadvantages or is he only present at his back and both act independent?

2) Are riding actions like "guide with knees" still necessary for the rider?

3) Do the eidolon and summoner act on the same iniative roll?

4) How many actions do the eidolon/summoner have? Due to the fact that the eidolon has INT7 it can act freely? So it can act normal but the summoner is limited to move equivalent/full/standart actions because he want to stay in the sattle and can not move.

5) What about the feat "mounted combat"? When an eidolons acts freely (with a rider on his back) does this feat work normal?


I have more questions regarding mounted combat but i will stop for the moment. I really do not understand the rules O_o

Thanks for your help.

1) The interaction between a rider and an intelligent mount is a little odd, so that's hard to answer.

2) The rider doesn't need to guide with knees. He/she can simply ask or command his/her mount to act. As far as other ride skill options... I don't know. I'm sure the summoner could fast mount/dismount, but others uses aren't so clear.

3) They still act on the same initiative.

4) The eidolon-mount can act normally. If it moves more than 5 feet, the rider can only make one attack (or take a standard action, I assume). If the eidolon-mount provokes AoOs, so does the rider. The both need to make Acrobatic/Stealth/etc checks when one is called for.

5) No idea, sorry.

Not much help. Hopefully others will chime in with more answers.

HappyDaze wrote:
...but if you wade into a crowd and rage on an enemy, it seems quite reasonable to me that your ability to distinguish friend from foe might be impaired.

Naw, no way...

That's the difference between rage and frenzy. Check out the old Frenzied Berserker PrCl out of Complete Warrior (I think). That one had a chance of hitting friends. Barbarians can distinguish between friends and foes while raging. I wouldn't impair a class that's already struggling by making it dangerous to its allies.

A raging barbarian is allowed to do other things that require at least some amount of thought. They can drink potions, which means they can recognize a changing situation and make a decision based on that information. "Oh, I'm hurt. I should drink a potion of Cure blah Wounds." or "I really need to hit that dude. Where's my True Strike potion?" They could click on Boots of Speed or release a spell from a spell storing weapon. But can they use supernatural abilities?

So, the general consensus is that no one is really sure if a raging Inquisitor can use its (Su) abilities? Is there some nice FAQ or something that clearly spells out what a barbarian (or any raging character) can do while raging?

So, along this same line of reasoning, a raging barbarian wouldn't have the presence of mind to draw on anything he/she has learned?

-switching to a silver weapon vs. werewolves.
-drinking a potion of fire resistance when facing a fire elemental.
-closing his/her eyes when facing bodaks.

I always thought knowledge checks were for more obscure information.

If a barbarian is so angry he can't think, how does he remember to wield his weapons properly? Basically, how does he do anything that he's been trained to do if his mind goes completely red?


HappyDaze wrote:
Bane requires you to select a creature type and subtype. This is usually a very easy thing to do with an untrained check of the appropriate Knowledge skill, but even this simple use of a Knowledge skill might be beyond a raging character.

... is a pretty decent argument.

I don't question that a barbarian CAN'T make knowledge checks while raging. I guess I question whether such a knowledge check is required to use the inquisitor bane ability.

I'm inclined to agree, but I'm biased here.

Is there a compelling argument that these abilities take patience or concentration?


Mojorat wrote:
as a useful guideline I'n the absence of apparent rules the spiritual weapon spell has rules that likely mirror intent if not actual raw.
Pick a favored weapon that corresponds to your alignment:
Core, Spiritual Weapon, pg348 wrote:
The weapons associated with each alignment are as follows: chaos (battleaxe), evil(light flail), good (warhammer), law (longsword).

Aside from that, I agree that the versatility of cherry picking domains more than makes up for the loss of a martial (maybe) weapon proficiency.

If a player were allowed to get a free weapon proficiency with ANY weapon (exotic or otherwise), what would motivate a player to worship a deity (besides flavor reasons)?


Still looking for feedback on this. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Let's say you have an 8th level Inquisitor with the Rage Domain (sub domain of destruction domain) or a multiclass Barbarian/Inquisitor.

Can this character use the supernatural abilities of the Inquisitor class while raging?

Upon reading the description of rage, I find this:

Core p32:
While in rage, a barbarian cannot use any
Charisma-, Dexterity-, or Intelligence-based skills
(except Acrobatics, Fly, Intimidate, and Ride) or any ability
that requires patience or concentration.

Do supernatural abilities count as such? Barbarians can use rage powers that are supernatural while raging, so I am inclined to think it's good to go.

Example, APG p75:
Elemental Rage, Lesser (Su): As a swift action, the barbarian can cause her melee attacks to deal an additional 1d6
points of energy damage (acid, cold, electricity, or fire) for
1 round. A barbarian must be at least 4th level to select this
rage power. This power can only be used once per rage.

Has this been addressed? Just wondering if my raging Inquisitor can still use judgments and bane his weapons.


Cathedron wrote:
The thing is, if you control and kill your enemies, they don't hurt you as much and you don't need to heal. If you do things right, healing is what you do AFTER a fight.

This is perfectly said.

Expect shorter combats with this strategy. With some practice, the team might kill a majority of enemies before they even make it to melee.

Anything that surprises the group will be difficult though...

I think Intensified Spell is great. Allows mid to high level casters to make good use of lower level spell slots. A 10d4 Burning Hands is pretty good for a 2nd level spell and still useful for a 10 - 12th level caster.

I think it's great for a Witch who lack many offensive spells or Sorcerer since they don't get a ton of spells in the first place.

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A lot of good advice here already...

If you plan on taking the Minor Magic Rogue Talent, I suggest Acid Splash (no SR). Ranged touch attack that will deal Sneak Attack damage in the first round of combat (assuming you go first). Decent ranged option if your enemy is unaware. If you have a feat to burn at higher lever, you can even quicken it with Quicken Spell-like ability.

I'd say avoid Precise Strike, but Outflank is amazing if you have a team to support it. Use a keen rapier or burn a feat at 11th level and anyone who likes to hit in melee will be more than glad to flank with you. Take Opportunist Rogue Talent for insane chain hits.

You get that Use Magic Device high enough and you become the answer-man. I have a half-elf who used the bonus Skill Focus feat in UMD. Turned out pretty well when I could cast a Breath of Life on a dead ally with virtually no chance of failure. Potion of Greater Invisibility + Wand of any ray spell = Pathfinder version of a Spellwarp Sniper.

If your friend is used to playing melee-types, you can certainly work toward some overlap with a rogue. Toughness and favored class bonus to HP helps a lot here.

My time-tested advice:
-If you aren't Sneak Attacking, do something else with your action. UMD, Aid Another, tactical positioning, etc.
-Make use of Readied actions. Like when your barbarian gets into a flanking position.
-Be bold. Go big or go home. Get in there using your Acrobatics and/or feats. This will often put you in the center of danger. Be bold. Your team will get there soon. It's typically much easier for you to get into the super-important flanking position than them.
-Be good at what you do, but don't try to do everything. For this rogue, it may mean allowing the monk to be the super-stealthy one, while the rogue gets to be the "face."
-Don't discount UMD. Everybody needs some backup sometimes. Cleric can't get to your downed ally? No worries, rogue can do it. Wizard needs help containing mobs of baddies? Check. This goes in line with the previously stated advice of "Have a plan to kill everyone you meet." This is seriously good advice.

TarkXT wrote:
@Averus: What buffs? True Strike lasts one attack. Magic Weapon doesn't work well with your arcane pool (though it does save points if you don't care for the enhancements). Transformation is just plain lousy for the magus. The invisibility thing is a misconception. You'll catch them flatfooted but not necessarily with low AC. Most monsters past cr3 are almost all natural armor and those that aren't usually don't mind your invisibility since they see you anyway. In the end my best and most reliable buff to my attack roll is Bulls Strength which doesn't stack with items and doesn't scale with level.

I think the claim that every CR3+ monster has a way to render Invisibility useless is a bit of an overstatement.

Also, Invisibility grants a +2 to hit a creature that can't see them in addition to hitting a flat-footed AC (pg 195 Core Rulebook). So, even if their Flat-Footed AC = their regular AC, you still get a +2 to hit.

As far as other buffs, I guess I included Pool-based abilities under this category, but Haste, Bull's Strength and anything you pick up via Spell Blending.

TarkXT wrote:
Considering the designer himself has stated that the Magus's spell lsit is not meant to be buff heavy. Hell yes you rely on that arcane pool to hit reliably.

Yes, the Arcane Pool helps the Magus hit reliably. However, I feel the amount given is sufficient. The Magus has to regulate its resources just like a Wizard.

TarkXT wrote:
If I'm having to Flank, Debuff, and Combat Maneuver my opponents AC down to a manageable level than I'm already miles behind everyone else.

The Magus is an Intelligence-based melee class and should be played as such, making the best use of the class's abilities and the combat conditions. To me, this means moving around tactical, avoiding AoOs/Concentration with the ol' 5' step, disabling them with a spell and getting your Flank on.

The Magus is not a Fighter. He should use tricks (Color Spray, Grease, Invisibility, Web, Slow, Black Tentacles, Greater Invisibility, etc) to grant him (and his allies) bonuses (or penalties to enemies). No reason not to be hitting a stunned or flat-footed or flanked or otherwise impaired enemy all the time.

TarkXT wrote:
When a fighter uses combat maneuvers or full attacks he has a full BAB to back it up, when a Rogue sneak attacks he gets his full bab with no penalty, when a Monk flurry of blows he gets a full Bab minus that penalty. When a paladin smites evil he gets bonuses, not penalties. The magus however, comes with a signature ability, the ability that makes him more than a 1-20 eldritch knight, that has him swinging at -2 and forcing him to either roll a fifteen or better on cantrips in order to use this ability.

Maneuver Mastery Arcana. Lots of Rogues are Two-Weapon fighters that suffer the same issues that the Magus does. Monks have a boat load of issues to deal with. A paladin's smite is "better" because it only affects a subgroup of enemies.

I think you are misunderstanding the niche the Magus fills in a group. He's not a full-blown tank, capable of wading into combat carelessly. I don't think it was ever marketed as such. He's a clever combatant. He'll soften his enemies up or boost his own team. He'll strike decisively. He maneuvers cautiously and isn't against disappearing admit his foes (via some Invis spell).

On a related topic, consider the Arcane Weapon ability:
Lv1, 1 Pool Point, BaB +0, Bonus +1
Lv5, 1 Pool Point, BaB +3, Bonus +2
Lv9, 1 Pool Point, BaB +6, Bonus +3

One pool point can raise the Magus' to hit to being equal to his level like a Fighter.

But wait! A fighter can buy a magic weapon too!

Yes, but so can the Magus. Then the Magus can send this bonus to damage. The Fighter has to take a penalty to hit to get big damage (via Power Attack or Deadly Aim). The Magus has a lower to hit to begin with but gets to add freely to hit and damage.

Considering a Fighter should always be better at fighting, a Magus holds his own and has the tricks to set him apart from the other melee-oriented classes.

@Slacker2010 - Yeah, I was trying to illustrate that.

@Pendagast - One point gets you a static (and ever increasing) number of enhancement bonus to play with.

@TarkXT - A Magus doesn't have that bad of an attack. He should also be using tricky spells to get enemies off their game. Go Invisible and you'll rarely miss. The Magus shouldn't rely solely on his Arcane Pool to augment his combat ability. Spells! Buffs! Tactics!

Hasted Assault is awesome, but to be a team player, a Magus PC should probably opt for the Haste spell.

I believe that the wording in your second question is to make it clear that Improved Pool Spell does not reduce the cost of casting a Wizard spell that is not also a Magus spell with Arcane Pool points.

Improved Pool Spell:
Improved Pool Spell (Su): At 11th level, the magus’s ability to cast spells using his arcane pool increases. Whenever he casts a spell using his arcane pool, he expends a number of points from his pool equal to 1/2 the spell’s level (minimum 1). This reduction does not apply to increases in spell level due to metamagic feats.

Mynameisjake wrote:
If a Magus wanted to cast a 4th lvl spell that is on the Magus spell list, the cost is already 4. Is there an additional 4 point cost if the spell isn't on the Magus spell list?

The cost would only be 2 as per Improved Pool Spell.

Casting a 4th level Wizard spell that isn't a Magus spell costs 4 points.

As for your other questions... I'd like to see what other people think.

Good catches though.

In my (admittedly limited) experience running a Magus, it seems like a more complex class that requires a bit of additional work on the player's side. I don't think this is a bad thing. I'd group the Magus with classes like Bard, Inquisitor and Summoner in terms of difficulty to play (which is no too bad).

I think that, like a Bard, a "good" Magus requires a player to use all of its abilities in tandem. Not one at a time. People who think Bard is a terrible class don't know how to play one. Along the same lines, I think that people who think the Arcane Pool is too limited are not using the class's other features enough.

While the Arcane Pool is a prominent class feature of the Magus, I don't think you can say that it completely defines the class (like Bards and Bardic Music). Yes, Bards sing, but they also have spells and combat ability. Same goes for the Magus. In a given encounter, a Magus should use a little of everything just about every round.

Pendagast wrote:

no its pretty much weapon enhancements that chew it up.

i never have enough points to even dream about reflection

I don't see this. It cost 1 point to increase a weapon's bonus.

Arcane Weapon Ability:

MagusPDF wrote:
At 1st level, a magus can expend 1 point from his arcane pool as a swift action to grant any weapon he is holding a +1 enhancement bonus for 1 minute. For every four levels beyond 1st, the weapon gains another +1 enhancement bonus, to a maximum of +5 at 17th level.

I'm not sure what kind of gauntlets your DM sends you through, but I think the Magus has enough of an Arcane Pool to use about 1-3 points per encounter (1 at lower levels, then more at higher ones). I think using more than that means the Magus is not using enough of his other abilities (which are also great).

Now, if a player picks only Arcanas that use Pool point, then they will run into a problem. I also think that an "Extra Arcane Pool" feat would be appropriate for such players (+1 to previous proponents).

The Arcane Pool adds reliability, staying power, and versatility to the Magus. As a prepared caster, this goes a long way to increase the appeal of the class. Using the Arcane Pool should not be the only think a Magus does; it should be part of a strategy that includes physical attacks and spell-casting (spell combat).

Trying to play a Magus like a pure caster by using the Arcane Pool may be useful at times, but will ultimately fail if used as a primary strategy because the Magus is not a Wizard. The Arcane Pool should be used to augment the physical aspect of the Magus' strategy and for rare "Oh Crap" moments when silver bullet spells can save the day.

Also, Falcata rules in one-handed pwnage.

/end my opinion

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