Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Ultimate Combat (OGL)

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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Ultimate Combat (OGL)
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Seize the initiative and chop your foes to pieces with this exhaustive guide to the art of martial combat in this exciting new rulebook for the smash-hit Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, suitable for players and Game Masters alike!

This comprehensive 256-page hardcover reference reveals the martial secrets of the Pathfinder RPG rules like never before! Tons of new tricks and techniques for combat-oriented character classes put a sharp edge on your weapons and a sure step in your tactics, ranging from new barbarian rage powers, new cavalier orders, tons of new rogue talents, and more than 60 new archetypes for nearly every Pathfinder RPG character class, including spellcasters like wizards and clerics.

Ultimate Combat also introduces three new Pathfinder RPG classes: the ninja, samurai, and gunslinger! The ninja blends the subterfuge of the rogue with high-flying martial arts and assassination techniques. The samurai is an unstoppable armored warrior who lives by a strong code of honor—with or without a master. The gunslinger combines the fighter's martial prowess with a new grit mechanic that allows her to pull off fantastic acts with a pistol or rifle. All this plus tons of new armor and weapons, a complete treatment of firearms in the Pathfinder RPG, a vast array of martial arts, finishing moves, vehicle combat, duels, and new combat-oriented spells for every spellcasting class in the game!

Ultimate Combat includes:

  • New player character options for 14 Pathfinder RPG base classes, including alchemist discoveries, barbarian rage powers, cavalier orders, combat-cleric archetypes, animal shaman druids, new fighter archetypes like gladiator and armor master, inquisitor archetypes like witch-hunter or spellbreaker, combat-themed magus arcana, monk archetypes based on mastery of martial arts, new paladin archetypes like angelic warrior, ranger archetypes like big game hunter and trapper, new rogue tricks, and wizard archetypes like the gunmage
  • The ninja, samurai, and gunslinger, brand-new 20-level alternate classes specially designed to get the most out of combat
  • Hundreds of new combat-oriented feats including martial arts feat trees, finishing moves, and combination feats
  • In-depth overviews on a variety of combat-related topics, such as armor, Asian weapons, duels, fighting schools, guns, siege weapons, and more
  • A complete system covering vehicle combat, including wagons, boats, airships, and more
  • Tons of optional combat rules like called shots, armor as damage reduction, and new ways to track character health
  • ... and much, much more!

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-359-0

Errata
Last Updated - 8/20/2015

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3.50/5 (based on 41 ratings)

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Ultimate eastern and guns

2/5

I had wrote a quite lengthy review but the system ate it so here are the highlights:
1) The book is all about asian stuff and guns.
2) Don't buy it if you don't like either stuff.
3) The book has a lot good spells.
4) Most of the asian stuff mechanics work.
5) Gun rules don't work most of the times in APs and modules (they can't handle guns at mid+ levels).
6) The book had quite a few editing issues when it first came out, second printing corrected most of them but not all.
7) The art is superb.
8) Even if you don't like guns and eastern stuff you should buy the pdf since the price of the pdf is very good and you should get some use out it.


More Options ! more fighting, ... MORE !

5/5

flavorful options, powerful options
classes, archetypes, feats...

while 100% of the boook might not please you, you want this book.

having the choice to build flavorful PC with the right options is priceless (and for this book, you have...)


great reference book

4/5

Great reference book that helps further explain combat rules but it is not without its flaws.


Helping to close the caster/everyone else gap

4/5

Raise your hand if you play or run melee classes. Barbarians, Fighters, Monks, Rogues, Paladins, pretty much anything without 9 levels of spells. Is your hand raised?

Now look around. Does the person next to you NOT have their hand raised? No they don't? Quickly! Use your raised hand to smack them in the face! Ha! Now you've shown the pansy finger wigglers the power of combat characters. Now make them go away so you can read your reviews in peace.

Ultimate Combat serves some great functions in the scope of the PF:RPG.

It helps bring non-casters a little more in line with the potential power of casters in the metagame by adding a slew of new feats and archtypes directly relevant to them. How much milage you get from these may vary, but lest you think they're all just blow off concepts, I know for certainty at least 1 Magus, 1 Monk, and 1 Inquistor archtype from this book that are definitely considered competative for 'best build to get the most out of this class' in the guides and discussions I've read on the Paizo forums, and they added some Bard ones that are just interestingly different (Try the archeologist bard if you want to play a bard/rogue cross. Try to resist the temptation to use a whip... or don't. ;) )

The spells section brings about some new toys for all casters but it did try and keep a combat focus, that was nice for the 4 and 6 spell level casters. If you're a Paladin or Inquisitor look into the new Litany line you'll probably find something you like, as will most other classes.

The Gunslinger is an interesting addition to the core classes and I think a positive one because it adds a new dynamic to how combat can work, and does a good job putting firearms in a magical setting that could allow them. If they're not your cup of tea it's easy to just dissallow them in your campaign or keep their rarity higher, but if you're playing in PFS/Golarion it's good to have in case you want to travel to regions they're thematic for.

The Asian inspired new classes, the Samurai and Ninja, are also positive additions. Some debate arises with the Ninja, it truly does do what the Rogue does only some solid arguements can be made it does it better, I know several players who now build "Rogues" using the Ninja class. However looking at the current metagame of Pathfinder Rogues were often much malagined as one of the least powerful classes, I'm not going to fault Paizo for offering a potential alterantive that rocks!

Rounding out the book it offers some rules and stats on siege weapons and warfare, and expanded vehicle rules and vehicle combat rules, along with dozens of new weapons and armor. The first two can really assist a GM, and the last gives you options from different places (asian themed) and times (stone age, bronze age, for example).

I can't give this book 5 stars, Ultimate Magic was a bit better, and it's not on par with what the APG did, but in the end what is it? It's a solid 4. Unless you play just casters and only casters you probably won't be dissappointed, because it's a solid book that does what you want it to do, and you'll feel like the money was worth it 9 times out of 10.


1/5

Ultimate? Combat?

Neither of the words in the title really apply to this book. Ultimate Monk or Piecemail Combat fit much better. Overall, this book is about as good as Ultimate Magic. A lot of material that is useless (or unfinished/untested) that only applies to a class or two, and there is a lot of material that seems artificially injected to fill space, but really only further highlights the Ultimate Combat material that is not present.

All Classes will find something in this book, mostly poor, but there are a few gems. Sadly, I think that the writers forgot that this was suppossed to be a Combat themed book. Monk gets about 500% more than everyone else (combined?) Many of the Archtypes are pretty good, solid options, but still some classes get a lot and some get a few, and it tends to be the same Classes that get few and the same Classes that get many.

A lot of good spells, (that makes Ultimate Magic even more worthless), but I' starting to really question Paizo's ideas of balance and understanding the lines between Arcane/Divine, amongst other things. A lot of Magus and Paladin love, as well as Monks (yes Monks), but not too much for Combat focused Clerics, Wizards, Sorcerers, and Oracles.

If there where a 0 Stars option, I would pick that, simply because this is the absolute wrong way to go with a Hardcover "core" book. If they would drop the Asian themed stuff, and maybe the Monk-Onlyish Feats, this would have been a nice little softcover book, and maybe worth the price.


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Here's hoping for a Dragoon Archtype under the fighter class, that and I'm soo gonna get this book not matter what. :D

Grand Lodge

Isnt there a place somewhere here they release snipets of UC?

Trying but cant find the posts...


They'll probably start releasing previews for the book in the near future. If they follow the format they used for Ultimate Magic, every Tuesday should see a blog post revealing something from the book when the previews start rolling.

Grand Lodge

Heine Stick wrote:
They'll probably start releasing previews for the book in the near future. If they follow the format they used for Ultimate Magic, every Tuesday should see a blog post revealing something from the book when the previews start rolling.

Havent they started already? I thought I remembered seeing something awhile back?

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Helaman wrote:
Heine Stick wrote:
They'll probably start releasing previews for the book in the near future. If they follow the format they used for Ultimate Magic, every Tuesday should see a blog post revealing something from the book when the previews start rolling.
Havent they started already? I thought I remembered seeing something awhile back?

Thst was probably the playtest. Whic, I suppose, is a preview, just one a long way out and subject to massive rewriting.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

If the book is due at the first week in August and they plan a six-week preview like they did for UM, we should look for UC preview blogs to start at the end of June.

Owner - House of Books and Games LLC

MaverickWolf wrote:
gbonehead wrote:

I just really really really have my fingers crossed that they decided against making ninja a rogue archetype.

It's been stated on the boards that they were considering making it an archetype for no other reason than to prevent multiclassing with rogue, and that sort of rationale makes me a bit unhappy, as it's hard to justify for in-game reasons.

The playtest as it as a rogue alternate class, not an archetype (more changes than an archetype), and when they decided to not do that with gunslinger, gunslinger got a round 2. I haven't seen one for the ninja (or any real reason to not have it as a variant rogue, which is all I've ever used for one). You should check out the playtest document before you call bad on it being an archetype (I'm sure there are some changes between the playtest and the final product, but I doubt it's changing a huge amount).

Same difference - just because I got the terminology wrong (and I find the distinction to be just an annoyance) doesn't change the comment - you can't multiclass rogue/rogue whether it's two archetypes, an archetype and an alternate class, or what have you.

So I'm still hoping they decided against the arbitrary "let's make it an alternate class so people can't multiclass rogue/ninja" thing.

Stasiscell wrote:
gbonehead wrote:

I just really really really have my fingers crossed that they decided against making ninja a rogue archetype.

It's been stated on the boards that they were considering making it an archetype for no other reason than to prevent multiclassing with rogue, and that sort of rationale makes me a bit unhappy, as it's hard to justify for in-game reasons.

ask yourself what a ninja does differently than a rogue and what could be gutted from a rogue in order to make it a ninja and now you see what paizo is doing (and what i think is the correct decision) i mean rogue = versatile sneak , ninja = assassin sneak both have sneak attack both have a emphasis on the more subtle side of combat and both have the same attack progression it makes more sense to make it a alternate class .

and so you shall know archetypes and alternate classes are different .

the ninja is very much so and will be a breed of its own.

Yes, yes, I said archetype instead of alternate class. Here's my question: does that make my point invalid?

And, clearly ninja won't be a breed of its own if it's a rogue archetype. If it were actually a breed of its own I could multiclass ninja/rogue like I could ninja/monk or ninja/samurai.


Christopher LaHaise wrote:

I really don't understand those people who complain about guns in a fantasy setting. Fantasy means 'magic' and such exists in the setting, it doesn't mean 'middle ages but without technology'. Steampunk is fantasy, and there's guns. There's 'urban fantasy' which is set in a more modern period. There's historical fantasy.

Gunpowder and the advance of technology happens, even in 'fantasy' settings. Worlds evolve, and there should be nothing wrong with introducing gunpowder or any other advancements in society that we've seen.

Hell, if you're going with 'middle ages', hit some history books or the web, and look at what kind of technology existed in different parts of the world - you'll be surprised at what you can find.

It's typically the RATE of technological advancement that becomes problematic. You've got your fantasy world (let's say Golarion...) that has 1000s of years of history. You innocently decided to introduce primitive firearms. Then the players weigh in...

Suddenly, you've got PCs interested in crafting rules for the 1st time because they want to invent rifled barrels, revolvers, and gatling guns...

You've shifted the campaign from Middle Ages/Renaissance to Age of Sail because once the pirate ship is equipped with cannons, bows, knights, and heavy armor "just don't fit".

Players want to jump past the 1800s directly to modern day tactics -- precisely because they favor fast, highly trained specialist commandos... Y'know like the PCs.

Obviously, it doesn't have to go this route, but it can. Personally, I've seen it happen on 3 occasions. I was the GM for one of them. Despite my efforts to "reign the tech in", the sessions devolved to the point where I was constantly arguing why something couldn't be done ("Your fighter has an 8 INT, how in the hell did he come up with THAT idea, let alone know how to design it?!")

Firearms and modern tactics are an easier step (even the Old West) for the average gamer to associate with. Given our position on the technological advancement line and our modern media, it's no surprise.

Yes, it can be handled. If you want a game that has firearms and you want to handle those issues at the outset, go for it. Many of us, however, would prefer to be spared the headache - at least as far as official campaign related material is concerned.

YMMV.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Kajehase wrote:
I notice the ISB-number is still TBD. Any ETA on that?

I've added the ISBN to the product description.

Liberty's Edge

Drillboss D wrote:


Hear hear! Hound master cavalier! New orders!

Just... We can haz moar Cavalier?

Quick quasi threadjack ...

Have you by any chance checked out Advanced Options: Cavaliers' Orders from Super Genius Games?

It has 6 all new cavaliers orders, new feats and other goodies ... :)


Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber
Vic Wertz wrote:
Kajehase wrote:
I notice the ISB-number is still TBD. Any ETA on that?
I've added the ISBN to the product description.

You are a king among men.


Anything new you can show us paizo? Please with goblin gibblets on top we are all very anxious "twitches" .

Dark Archive

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Pathfinder Card Game, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Stasiscell wrote:
Anything new you can show us paizo? Please with goblin gibblets on top we are all very anxious "twitches" .

Saturday night will probably be illuminating...


Enlight_Bystand wrote:
Stasiscell wrote:
Anything new you can show us paizo? Please with goblin gibblets on top we are all very anxious "twitches" .
Saturday night will probably be illuminating...

by zeus,s lightning i hope so


I know the Ultimate Combat flyer in the back of my Ultimate Magic book references "3 all new classes." I wondered whether they were counting alternate classes as classes, or if they actually mean that Samurai and Ninja got made into base classes.


They said the Gunslinger is a base class now but I haven't heard anything about the Ninja and Samurai being base classes.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Dragon78 wrote:
They said the Gunslinger is a base class now but I haven't heard anything about the Ninja and Samurai being base classes.

Which is good - they are perfectly done as archetypes/alternate classes.

Shadow Lodge

My only concern is that I think the gunslinger should be allowed access the (currently) fighter-only feats for firearms. Stuff like weapon specialization, etc. Having an entire class dedicated to a small group of weapons yet not allowing them to take weapons specialization would be dumb.


I disagree, I would rather have Ninja and Samurai as base classes and why the Cavalier was the base for the Samurai was the last choice that I would have picked.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Dragon78 wrote:
I disagree, I would rather have Ninja and Samurai as base classes and why the Cavalier was the base for the Samurai was the last choice that I would have picked.

To me, it's the only sane choice.


Kthulhu wrote:
My only concern is that I think the gunslinger should be allowed access the (currently) fighter-only feats for firearms. Stuff like weapon specialization, etc. Having an entire class dedicated to a small group of weapons yet not allowing them to take weapons specialization would be dumb.

I agree. Gunslinger as an alternate fighter makes sense. I some setting, I guess IS the fighter, as a role in society.

Ninja/Rogue and Cavalier/Samurai alternate classes seem so obvious and logical to me that is not even needed a discussion.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I'm guessing the gunslinger will get a class ability that'll allow her to take feats usually reserved for fighters, similar to the magus's Fighter Training ability.

Shadow Lodge

Kaiyanwang wrote:
Kthulhu wrote:
My only concern is that I think the gunslinger should be allowed access the (currently) fighter-only feats for firearms. Stuff like weapon specialization, etc. Having an entire class dedicated to a small group of weapons yet not allowing them to take weapons specialization would be dumb.

I agree. Gunslinger as an alternate fighter makes sense. I some setting, I guess IS the fighter, as a role in society.

Ninja/Rogue and Cavalier/Samurai alternate classes seem so obvious and logical to me that is not even needed a discussion.

You don't quite agree with me, as I do think that gunslinger should be different enough to be it's own class. Just that certain fighter-only feats should be expanded to include gunslingers as well.


Kthulhu wrote:
Kaiyanwang wrote:
Kthulhu wrote:
My only concern is that I think the gunslinger should be allowed access the (currently) fighter-only feats for firearms. Stuff like weapon specialization, etc. Having an entire class dedicated to a small group of weapons yet not allowing them to take weapons specialization would be dumb.

I agree. Gunslinger as an alternate fighter makes sense. I some setting, I guess IS the fighter, as a role in society.

Ninja/Rogue and Cavalier/Samurai alternate classes seem so obvious and logical to me that is not even needed a discussion.

You don't quite agree with me, as I do think that gunslinger should be different enough to be it's own class. Just that certain fighter-only feats should be expanded to include gunslingers as well.

I apologize for the misunderstanding then :)

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I admit to being slightly disappointed that we didn't get a bit more spoiled on this book from PaizoCon. :(


Shisumo wrote:
I admit to being slightly disappointed that we didn't get a bit more spoiled on this book from PaizoCon. :(

+1

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

BPorter wrote:
Shisumo wrote:
I admit to being slightly disappointed that we didn't get a bit more spoiled on this book from PaizoCon. :(
+1

Did you go to the Banquet?


Dragon78 wrote:
I disagree, I would rather have Ninja and Samurai as base classes and why the Cavalier was the base for the Samurai was the last choice that I would have picked.

Agreed. I preferred both to be Base Classes and they had plenty of ways to do it, particularly snagging ideas from the Final Fantasy series. Alas, Paizo keeps treading the easy path. I wish they'd take a narrow path once in awhile, they'd be surprised how big the pay off is sometimes.


The book is about 1 and a half months away, it's driving me nuts. But I have to be patient.


Vic Wertz wrote:
BPorter wrote:
Shisumo wrote:
I admit to being slightly disappointed that we didn't get a bit more spoiled on this book from PaizoCon. :(
+1
Did you go to the Banquet?

No, I wasn't able to go. I've just been combing the boards looking for more UC tidbits. Seems the races book & the new AP have stolen all of the thunder, though.


I'd still like to know more on the angelic warrior archetype

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

BPorter wrote:
Vic Wertz wrote:
BPorter wrote:
Shisumo wrote:
I admit to being slightly disappointed that we didn't get a bit more spoiled on this book from PaizoCon. :(
+1
Did you go to the Banquet?

No, I wasn't able to go. I've just been combing the boards looking for more UC tidbits. Seems the races book & the new AP have stolen all of the thunder, though.

I'm a bit surprised I haven't seen more of the details we showed on the boards, too. Perhaps when the YouTube videos are posted...


Speaking of more infos, given the time-line for UC's street release, shouldn't the 6-week preview start this coming Tuesday? :)


I'm hoping and praying for a Vampire Hunter archetype of the Inquisitor.


A vampire hunter would be nice but I would like to a dragon slayer archtypes for fighter, paladin, ranger, and cavalier. Also a mage killer one for the Barbarian.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

So, it appears that this hasn't been addressed yet. I was wondering if there's going to additional Animal domains for Druids in this book? I see Lion and Bear domains being very Combat oriented.

Also wondering when we'll start seeing previews for this book. I am really looking forward to adding this one to my library.


Will there be archetypes for the Gunslinger, Ninja, and Samurai?

If there are archetypes, could Paizo please reveal at least one for either the Ninja or the Samurai in the coming weeks, it would be greatly appreciated and could hype up players to get the book even more.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Pawns, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I'm really looking forward to the "finishing moves" myself :)


Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Azure_Zero wrote:

Will there be archetypes for the Gunslinger, Ninja, and Samurai?

If there are archetypes, could Paizo please reveal at least one for either the Ninja or the Samurai in the coming weeks, it would be greatly appreciated and could hype up players to get the book even more.

The ninja and samurai are essentially themselves archetypes as alternate classes are just bigger/more-extensive versions of archetypes. So, no, there won't be any archetypes for the ninja and samurai; just the two alternate class descriptions themselves. The closest you will get is by picking an Order for your samurai to follow, including an Order of the Ronin.


Ashanderai wrote:
Azure_Zero wrote:

Will there be archetypes for the Gunslinger, Ninja, and Samurai?

If there are archetypes, could Paizo please reveal at least one for either the Ninja or the Samurai in the coming weeks, it would be greatly appreciated and could hype up players to get the book even more.

The ninja and samurai are essentially themselves archetypes as alternate classes are just bigger/more-extensive versions of archetypes. So, no, there won't be any archetypes for the ninja and samurai; just the two alternate class descriptions themselves. The closest you will get is by picking an Order for your samurai to follow, including an Order of the Ronin.

Just because it's an alternate class, does not mean it could have it's own archetypes.

And yes I know that samurai have orders that they can pick, but what about an archetype that modifies the other things than what the order modifies.


Nevermind, I got my answer

Liberty's Edge

Rogue vs. Ninja


I wish ninjas, and samurai had their own archetypes, they don't).

The ninja is like a blend of Rogue(mostly) and Monk(partially), and due to this blend should have it's own archetypes, like a more Ki based ninja, a more combat based ninja, a Kunoichi, a more skilled ninja, a scouting ninja, etc..

The samurai is somewhat configurable with the use of orders, but I would like to see a more weapon(s) specific configuration like in APG for the fighters, applied to samurai.

Liberty's Edge

If we have the ongoing subscription for this book, will we get the option to pick it up at GenCon like the APG last year?


YAY (sarcasm), only one month to go.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Ricky Bobby wrote:
If we have the ongoing subscription for this book, will we get the option to pick it up at GenCon like the APG last year?

Yep. We have one more subscriber shipment to deal with before we can flip the switch allowing you to choose that; I'd expect to see something in your inbox about it in the second week of July.


Wish there was a alchemist archetype that focused on nothing but bombs removing his ability to apply poison to weps and create mutagens but greatly enhancing his bomb throwing capabilities ,


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Time wise
it is so close, yet so far away.

Since archetypes for alternate classes do not exist yet, I would ask Paizo to consider it an option for a later book(s).


Did someone say AIRSHIP COMBAT?

Any sneaks at this :)


Azure_Zero wrote:

Time wise

it is so close, yet so far away.

Since archetypes for alternate classes do not exist yet, I would ask Paizo to consider it an option for a later book(s).

An evil version of the Oathbound Paladin would be cool ... :-P

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