The Tinker: Master of Modular Mechanical Mayhem (PFRPG) PDF

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For some, the smell of oil is akin to that of a fine perfume, the rush of invention is the only motivation one needs, and the eternal battle against corrosion is a constant annoyance. These individuals, the tinkers, are exemplars of the unfettered creative spirit. It is this creative spirit, the constant thirst for new ideas, that propels them to seek the unknown, whether it be found in a library or in the dark depths of an ancient tomb. Supported by a vast array of custom automatons, an experienced tinker, while not a fierce combatant on his own, commands an exceptionally versatile squadron that more than makes up for his own deficiencies.

The Tinker: Master of Modular Mechanical Mayhem is the end result of months of playtesting and development. Presented herein is the Tinker base class, an individual who can be described as a "non-spellcaster spellcaster". The domain of the tinker is the mundane. While others dominate the battlefield with arms and arcane might, the tinker does so through mechanical means.

The tinker's greatest asset is the variety of machines he can bring to bear in a fight. Small, mindless automatons make up the bulk of this power, but experienced tinkers are capable of building autonomous Alphas that act as the tinker's #2. Sentient, the alpha can eventually learn to order around the automatons so the tinker doesn't have to. Further, truly skilled tinkers are followed around by a swarm of nanobots. This swarm is capable of rending most any material into its constituent pieces and then rebuilding it into something useful. Many of the dragonscale breastplates that exist in the world today were crafted from a dragon in six seconds flat by a tinker swarm.

To allow for maximum modularity, the tinker has a brand new magic-like system: inventions! Tinkers can learn inventions, place them into blueprints, and then deploy automatons based on those blueprints.

This product features:

  • The Tinker base class
  • Progression tables for the tinker, his automatons, and his alpha
  • 4 feats
  • 21 innovations (talents)
  • 12 greater innovations (greater talents)
  • 121 inventions with full summary invention list
  • Dozens of pregenerated automaton configurations to get the creative juices flowing
  • Bookmarks and limited internal linking
If sales are strong, a number of prestige classes will be made available for the tinker as separate products. These include:
  • The Innovator - By focusing his inventive power on his weapon, the innovator makes a one-of-a-kind killymajig.
  • The Mechromancer - Mixing the power of necromancy with the power of invention, the mechromancer maintains a double dose of mindless thralls. Backed by the ability to raise "dead" automatons, the line between machine and undead blurs in awkward ways.
  • The Steelsinger - So, you have a bunch of robots. Awesome - make a band.

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A robot-deploying base class


The Tinker – Master of Modular Mechanical Mayhem is a complex, in-depth, customizable class with excellent potential. It is, however, something that should be attemoted by more experienced players, due to the large amount of options presented. The pdf weighs in at 34 pages, so let's crack it open and see what we have.

The Tinker gets d8 hit dice, ¾ BAB, and 4+Int skill points per level. He also gets a good Reflex save, simple weapon proficiency, and proficiency with light armour and shields. As it turns out, medium and heavy armour interferes with ‘all of the ridiculous pantomiming’ that comes with issuing orders, creating a sort of mundane failure chance.

Now for the crunchy class features, which the Tinker certainly brings in spades. Probably the biggest thing is the robots – or ‘automatons’, Small constructs with poor saves and a set number of hit points. The Tinker can deploy a number of automatons a day equal to his class level, and can have one out at a time at first level, eventually gaining the ability to have up to three automatons deployed at once. These automatons are built from blueprints, of which the Tinker only has a very limited number, which are customized with inventions (more on those later). The process takes an hour, much like a wizard preparing his spells.

Once deployed, the Tinker has to give his automatons directives, which takes a standard action. The automatons, it should be reminded, have only a semblance of intelligence – the directives include warnings that, for example, should the target of an Attack directive die, the automaton will continue to maul the corpse. Automatons can also be directed to use potion injectors, repair kits, and any skills in which they have ranks as directives.

Master’s Presence allows the Tinker’s automatons to use some of his own basic features, such as BAB and base saving throw modifiers, on their own rolls, while Scribe Invention functions much like Scribe Scroll, allowing the Tinker to make copies of his inventions to distribute – handy, as copying from one invention book to another tends to end messily!

At every even-numbered level, the Tinker gains an Innovation, a breakthrough discovery that enhances his automatons. Such innovations include additional, specialized directives (such as Aid or Kamikaze), the ability to include design inventions in his blueprints without having to remove other inventions, heavier construction (granting automatons more hit points), more blueprints, self-defence programming, and, in a truly wonderful bit of flavour text, ‘Overzealous Execution’ – Having given each of your automatons a semblance of a personality, they suddenly begin to exhibit an almost dog-like desire to please you by following your commands with an overzealous excitement. Cute!

Moving on, the Tinker gains ½ his class level as a bonus to Craft checks, and, at 4th level, the Alpha. The Alpha is a Medium construct, with an Intelligence score of 10 and the ability to gain feats. It can also hold more inventions, but the downside is that these inventions can’t be changed except upon gaining a new class level, or completely rebuilding the Alpha (an expensive process, but a necessary one if the Alpha falls).

At 5th, 10th, and 15trh level, the Tinker gains a Greater Innovation. These allow him to, for example, grant extra hit dice to his automatons, decrease the cost of rebuilding his Alpha, change blueprints as a full-round action, and even make ‘gigadroids’ two size categories larger than normal. Probably the coolest ability, however, is the Swarm that the Tinker gets at 11th level – a swarm of nanobots that can duplicate fabricate to turn raw materials into a finished product, and, at higher levels, can process living creatures (as per disintegrate), and reshape solid magical effects. Finally, at 20th level, the Tinker has to choose a line of succession – the options are Constitutional Monarchy, Progenitor, and Gavelkind. As capstones go, I have to say this is a brilliant way of handling it – deciding what happens to your robot buddies after you die!

We then get an overview of the automatons and the Alpha, complete with tables showing level advancement. Automatons gain a semblance of personality, as well as the ability to help, unasked, on Craft checks using the Aid Another action – a nice little mental image. The Alpha gains the ability to issue directives to other automatons, and to deploy automatons if the Tinker is unconscious or dead (though it can’t alter the blueprints).

We then get some favoured class bonuses, a few feats (mostly focusing on Honorary Tinker, which allows a non-Tinker to issue directives to idling automatons or automatons defending them), and then 20 pages of Inventions, first grouped by level and summarized, then explained in full detail. There are too many to describe, so I’ll just say this much: many of them build off each other and you can find some fun combinations. And if you’re like me (easily overwhelmed by options), the author has helpfully included sample configurations at various levels, for various purposes. You can build a sunder-bot, a tripper, an electroshocker, a heavy melee bot, a missile blaster, or even a kamikaze root, built entirely to explode and deal as much damage as possible. Excellent stuff! Other inventions include potion injectors, crossbow turrets, and “robosaddles”, allowing the Tinker to saddle up his ‘bot and ride it into battle!

The entire pdf is presented in crisp black and white, with a simple border and a few pieces of line art. If you’re looking for beautiful illustrations of the Tinker and his buddies, you won’t find them; however, you’ll probably be too busy trying to wrap your head around all the crunch. I’ll be honest, here – when I first read this class, I was overwhelmed. It definitely needs to be opened up and played with before you can begin to appreciate the true potential of the class.

That said, I can’t recommend it enough. It’s a wonderful class, sprinkled liberally with humour, ridiculously customizable, and carrying plenty of support from the author. A solid five stars – worth every cent of the asking price!

Robot pilot


Summary: The tinker is a pet class that builds and controls robots similar in strength to summoned creatures and animal companions, but with eidolon-like mechanics. Instead of spells, he gets inventions, used exclusively on his bots.

Main ability: Intelligence.

Gameplay experience: When presenting the class to my players, the one who would later pick it up, defined it: “Isn’t this just like a drone pilot?”. And, indeed, the main robots of the Tinker, the automatons, behave just like drones, needing directives to do anything. The character sits back and just remote controls his way through combat. But since they use up a standard action, directives can become a challenge to issue, especially if the tinker is a melee combatant and has the habit to charge as soon as possible, leaving the rest of the party behind (with mixed results!).

My melee tinker player is struggling to understand that the automaton is actually the better tanker, not himself – but the other shoe is starting to drop, and he’s using more and more his directives, in clever ways. The automaton really begins to pick up at the second level, when he can receive more than one invention. And the kamikaze directive is just a beast, perfect to end encounters.

He still has to level up enough to get an alpha, but I expect a more independent robot to change a lot the dynamic of the tinker in battle. And once the second automaton kicks in, things will get even crazier. Yes, he friggin’ loves his robots.

Ramblings: The directives make the Tinker quite an unique pet class, unlike animal (ab)users who practically control their pets as an extended part of their bodies - the automaton actually requires constant planning, but makes it up to the player for being so versatile and tough/useful. But left alone, they are nothing more than furniture – hardly a monster will ever bother attacking a still robot instead of a meaty player character. You gotta keep them moving!

And I don’t even want to imagine what a Tinker can do if all his automatons and alpha are destroyed, with no deployments left. Maybe I won’t have to, if the party runs into some robot-hating monsters in a future encounter… sounds fun.

Rarting: Five out of five stars.

Suggestions: Maybe a way to use magic items to power up the automatons? Not making them hold wands and cast fireballs or anything like that, but maybe consuming charges or uses per day to do something odd. Not really an idea, barely a concept.

Drawing a blank here, since the tinker is the most expanded class of Interjection Games, with extra books containing archetypes, prestige classes and inventions. And it will be expanded even further, according to its creator. Looking forward to it!

An review


This pdf is 34 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page hyperlinked ToC, 1 page SRD, leaving us with a whopping 31 pages of content, so let's take a look!

So, what's up with the Tinker-class? He gets d8, 4+Int skills per level, proficiency with simple weapons, light armor and shields, 3/4 BAB-progression, good ref-saves - and that's where the basic components stop. Tinkers get access to so-called inventions. In order to use inventions, a tinker needs an int-score of 10+ the invention level. In contrast to spell-DCs, DCs, when applicable, for inventions, are 10 +1/2 class level + Int-mod.

Tinkers also get 1+Int/3 blueprints and each blueprint and each blueprint contains class level times build pool points, with 5th level and every 5 levels after that offering an additional blueprint beyond those granted by the Int-score formula. The tinker can deploy automatons 1/day/level.

Beyond that, the Tinker gets an invention-book, which is somewhat akin to a wizard-book in how it works regarding copying from it etc. Tinkers start with 3+Int mod inventions at first level and get +2 inventions per level, of any available level - for depending on the level of the tinker, inventions of up to 6th level are available. Scribing these for other tinkers to use also works akin to scribing scrolls. But that's where the similarities with spellcasting ends.

Tinkers also create so-called automatons, at 1st level he creates the first and then at 7th and 13th level additional automatons. These automatons can be directed via (Surprise!) so-called Directives, which can be deciphered via Spellcraft. A total of 8 directives from attacks to support and idle and following is covered and issuing these directives is a standard action, but shutting these automatons down to an idle state is a free action. Automatons get up to 7 HD (at 20th level, though information for further progression is present) and may at this Tinker-level, have +2 saves , Str and Dex 14 (starting off with 10) and 47 HP. Automatons are created much like spells are prepared

At 4th level, the Tinker also gets a special automaton, the Alpha, who may use untrained skills in contrast to regular automatons and which may actually make its own decisions, including AoOs. Alphas may get up to 12 HD (again, with information to transcend the 20th level cap, if need be), up to +4 to saves, Str and Dex of up to 20 (starting at 12) and 90 HP as well as feats on every third HD. At higher levels, the Alpha may issue directives autonomously and at 19th level, even temporarily replace the tinker's abilities in commanding his/her automatons while s/he is incapacitated. Also, in contrast to losing automatons, losing an alpha s actually penalized, costing the Tinker quite an array of GP to rebuild his crowning achievement, should it ever be destroyed.

Abilities? Yes - for when looking just at the basic table, the automatons are WEAK. Which is by design - from the 1st level on, the automatons get the tinker's BAB as an insight bonus to atk, AC and CMD and may use the tinker's BAB to calculate their CMB and additionally may add their creator's saving throws as insight bonuses to their ridiculously low own - but only when within 30 ft. of the Tinker, 60 ft. at 9th level. This is an interesting balancing take indeed, as it makes the automatons and creations much more susceptible to being destroyed when sent on errands and used haphazardly and provides a nice rules-justification for the tinker to actually maintain proximity to his creations and not use them (exclusively) as expendable trap/ambush-bait.

Of course, bonuses to crafting, as were to be expected, are also part of a tinker's array, as is a rather cool idea - at 11th level, the tinker essentially gets a swarm of nanite-style constructs that can act as a mage hand and comes with 3 charges that allow the swarm to use fabricate once per charge. Starting at 14th level, tinkers may use disintegration via their swarm on living targets, fabricating duplicates of their dissolved bodies and later even break down walls of force and similar magical effects.

Additionally, at 2nd level and every 4 levels after that, the tinker learns an innovation and at 5th, 10th and 15th a greater innovation. Unless I have miscounted, tinkers may select from a total of 21 innovations to add to their automatons - and they are interesting indeed: For example, you may opt to grant your Alpha +2 to Str and Dex and +1 HD at the cost of one less regular automaton deployed at any given time, enhance the range in which your Alpha benefits from your Master's aura, add a charge to your swarm's charge pool etc. or increase the durability of your constructs, available blueprints or an addition invention with a limited build pool for your Alpha - permanently - unless you take a second innovation, that is. There are also innovations here that allow you to make your automatons capable of aiding others and one to make your automatons go kamikaze in a limited radius. Among the Greater Innovations, we get the options to rebuild your Alpha from scratch, enhance the physical prowess of your constructs and swap out deployed automatons 3/day with other blueprints you may have prepared. I have already mentioned the option to create massive, over-sized automatons or deploy your swarm not as a spell-like non-magical ability, but as a type of swarm-automaton. It should also be noted, that a certain innovation, designer, is required to get access to certain inventions, so you might want to fracture that into your contemplations.

The class comes with favored class options for the core-races as well as 4 new feats, one of which nets you an extra innovations. One lets you give directives as if a tinker/command unsupervised other automatons, retaliate for the destruction of your automatons or (and that one is AWESOME), share your teamwork feat as a swift action with your automatons.

The pdf also features inventions - vast, vast arrays of inventions. Inventions span 6 levels and the maximum available level of invention is based on tinker-level. Beyond this straight balancing, the respective inventions also have build pool point-costs ranging from 1 to 4, acting as a second means of balancing the respective inventions for the respective automaton-builds your tinker may devise. They come with a nice, concise list that provides you an overview and spans multiple pages (yes, that many inventions!) as well as prerequisites, when applicable.

And oh boy - they are rather versatile: From allowing your automatons to make the total defense action or repair oneself, reload ranged weapons etc. Supplies etc. need to be replenished and even riding the automaton via saddles becomes possible, as is the option to add catapults to hurl flasks. Have an alchemist-buddy? Well, your automaton can act as a minelayer, apply poisons, inject multiple potions at once or create a static shield of electricity that surrounds the automaton - which is btw. massively upgradeable. Have I mentioned the glorious one that lets the invention of a high-level pugilist move up to its speed and trip and sunder everything in its path 1/day, combinable with other inventions for even more pain and insult to injury?

The pdf also provides us a short FAQ as well as some sample invention-progressions.

As I'm seeing myself often complaining about the lack of support for 3pp-classes, sometimes in their very own books, this massive array of customization options is a joy to behold and makes for some massive options.

Have I mentioned the three exceedingly cool capstone abilities?


Editing and formatting are top-notch, I didn't notice any significant glitches or typos while reading this pdf. Layout adheres to Interjection Games' elegant 2-column b/w-standard and sports some nice, thematically fitting b/w-artworks. The pdf is fully bookmarked for your convenience, though not with nested bookmarks.

These are good days to review classes, it seems. I'm quite impressed with this tinker - author Bradley Crouch has created a delightfully complex class with multiple checks and balances that does some actually UNIQUE things - it's not just an alternate summoner or akin to the machinesmith - it gloriously does something different and shows that is a labor of love, oozing excellent ideas and allowing a staggering array of customization options for your perusal.

One minor gripe I have would be that inventions that net proficiencies are supposed to net the respective items as well - something I consider slightly problematic in games where the money is tight - requiring the tinker to provide at least one base weapon (e.g. one bastard sword that can be used again if the automaton is destroyed) to be integrated into an automaton might be more prudent for certain groups, though I can see that being best house-ruled.

Let's do the run-though, shall we? All in all, we get a VERY complex class with options galore, something to tinker with and create, a class that does not just copy existing builds but dares to do things differently. It's funny, really - after Purple Duck Games' Covenant Magic, I did not expect to soon give ANY class a good verdict - the offering just upped the ante that far. But this tinker here actually manages to climb to the highest echelons with a combination of great fluff, nice humor and most of all: Solid crunch galore. Reviewing it was a nightmare, though - it's been ages since I had to do this much math to check for average damage etc. - mind you, the implementation when playing/building works much easier, though. While the first iteration suffered from some oversights, these have by now been mostly rectified and thus I feel justified in rating this 5 stars + seal of approval - well worth your money and definitely an advanced class that feels very unique and exciting.

Endzeitgeist out.

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I bet my tinker can beat up your tinker...j/k.

I'm curious to pick this up and see what you folks did.

- Greg
Amora Game

Pretty much any class in existence could beat up a poor, defenseless Tinker. The fella doesn't even have much on a commoner - the key's the army at his back. Okay, more'n likely in the front.

lol. I like that road you folks took. It has some neat ideas. I will run this through our standard beta test format and get a reveiw up.

Fair enough, though I've noticed a bunch of typos and have fixed those. Please hold up for that given some of them are actually quite important. Whenever it's approved by Paizo staff, you'll see the new version.

Updated again - now with better wording for two class abilities.

I like the mechanical crunch of this class, after having reviewed it on, however I feel that the "tongue-in-cheek" commentary in the class abilities takes away from the professional quality of the game mechanics and makes it seem, overall, less polished.

You're hit right out of the gate with text like, "As it turns out, it is particularly difficult to perform all of the ridiculous pantomiming necessary to get an automaton to do the tinker's bidding when the tinker doesn't understand how his full plate works" that is entirely surreptitious to the class' mechanics. It feels, at times, like text of this nature serves to obfuscate the actual mechanics, where text should be informative and concise.

While this sounds like a review, I can't give a full product review without actually testing out the viability of the class, and that may be a ways out yet. Hopefully in future releases, Interjection Games can have a more clean and polished feel for their classes like I've come to expect from other 3rd party publishers and Paizo.

Another example of this kind of distractionary text comes in the description for the Swarm ability. "As the dust (nanobot corpses) clears, the tinker realizes that he isn't going to die. In fact, this swarm appears to be awaiting his orders. Most excellent."

Nothing in that sentence helps us understand the abilities themselves and, in breaking up the first text about the Swarm devouring an entire lab's worth of materials makes things more confusing than they need to be. Does the swarm actually devour an entire lab's worth of materials? Does this event actually happen when the Tinkerer gains this ability, or is that just flavor text? I can't rightly tell, and that is part of the problem.

I'm afraid I fully embrace the silly, Lucent.

Embracing silly is fine and great, but only when it doesn't otherwise damage the integrity of a fantastic class. As written some of the abilities, Swarm specifically comes to mind, have inscrutable mechanical aspects that will inevitably require additional interpretation, questions and adjudication (which adds more work for the DM.)

Let me expand upon that. There is a rather vocal group of people within my regulars who really hate abilities that function because "That's the way the DM said so." The Tinker is an attempt to construct something complicated without anything carrying that level of... let's call it "arbitrarity". Also, I'm a smartass.

Oh, as for that, I rewired The Swarm and Deploy Automaton (I didn't remember to say one deployment per level per day -_-) and you should see it in a day or so max. That was the message from about 5 hours ago.

If you bought it on RPGnow, it's already available. Have fun!

I think, in some regards, you may have done the exact opposite in this. The Swarm's description describes a scenario where an entire lab's worth of gear is devoured when they activate. How much gear before it stops? Does it matter whose? Does it occur exactly when the PC levels up and attains Swarm? Will they know this happens?

It feels like those are a lot of questions the DM is going to need to answer, arbitrarily, and tell the Tinkerer player that "it happens like this..."

Taken from The Swarm - This should fix most of the issues you see, aye?

Further, the swarm has three charge points that refresh each day at dawn. The following abilities all cost one charge point to use. As a standard action, the tinker can order the swarm to turn raw materials into a finished product as the fabricate spell. Upon reaching 14th level, the swarm has grown advanced enough to process living creatures. Treat this as the disintegrate spell, but if it kills the creature, it immediately fabricates the corpse instead of vaporizing it. At 17th level, the swarm can do the same to all creatures, as well as reshape persistent magical effects with hit points, such as a wall of force. For each of these, the DC is 10 + 1/2 tinker level + Int modifier and the caster level is equal to the tinker's class level -3. Given the swarm is mechanical, these abilities all ignore spell resistance; however, damage reduction applies.

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Does it meet your 'specs' to purchase yet? The concept hits very close to one of my favorite summoner character ideas & I very much would like to check it out.

Oh, good grief, mate. I'll be making changes to it for awhile, I daresay. Making flow better, stubbornly defending the poorly-written jokes, you know the drill.

As it is, it's totally playable if you remember Deploy Automaton is 1/day/level. It was pretty idiotic of me to forget something so central to the class. If you find anything else and I agree it's an issue, I'll see what I can do regarding getting you free stuff as a "QA bounty".

Oh, and Lucent, a deal with you, if I may?

I'll remove the flavor text, though it shall cause me to weep, if you don't complain about the fact that I intend to call the Mechromancer's main ability "Blue Screen of Undeath".

Haven't bought this, but am checking it through d20pfsrd and it seems pretty good, though they haven't got the updates yet.
1. Keep the jokes, they're awesome, I will review this if necessary just so you keep the jokes. The pokes at Lex Luthor and Cave Johnson are awesome. More products should have stuff like that.
2. Just so I understand right, a 5th level tinker has an alpha and an automaton, he has say three blueprints and can deploy 5 times a day. That means he can change his one automaton into any of three forms a total of five times a day? Turret to fighter to healer, to turret to fighter and now I have to wait tommorrow to change the automaton again. That right? When I can have two automatons deployed can I deploy them with the same blueprint? Can I keep my automton deployed all the time and save my daily deployments to change him if needed?
3. Is scribe Invention usefull for anything besides copying your inventions so other tinkers can learn them?
4. When an invention says it replaces another do I have to put them both on the blueprint or just the high level one? Do I have to pay 6 buildpoints for Mechanical Monk Module, Monkling Module and Acceleration Module or jus three for Monk? Also since they both replace Acceleration module, I'm thinking you can't put Monk and Shadwdancer on the same blueprint, right?
5. Can I put to design inventions on the same blueprint? Stout and Bulky for instance, or Streamlined and Nimble?
6. Can a creature with Minelayer Compartment and another Compartment dump all of the alchemicals in its compartments on the mine or just the ones in the Minelayer? If the Automaton has more than one compartment cn he fire from all its compartments with a flaskapult or does it need to have several flaskapults installed?

Yeah, the SRD version isn't updated as of yet. As it is, I need to clean up the Invention Book Sidebar, The Swarm, Deploy Automaton, and I believe one of the tables has a column with incorrect data in it. I had family over and all, so this weekend has been zero productivity. Also near on zero sales after a week of earning enough money to stand on my own two feet and survive. That simply means I need to get the first iteration of my next 15,000 word project done and quit making the little 1,000-2,000 word things.

1. Aye, though Lucent does bring up a good point with the one he decided to focus on the most. It is the sole joke in the product that actually becomes disruptive enough for me to frown at it.

2. Correct on all counts, save a new deployment is a totally new machine. This is important, because if a new design were to share inventions, your means of thinking would call into question whether hit points restore, inventions refill charges, etc. etc. When I update the SRD entry, I'll make sure that an update didn't clarify this.

To think of it as pure, ludicrous mechanics, this means you can picture that the tinker has access to a hammerspace bag because he's literally carrying around machines equal to his level (or greater) on his back at all times. If you have a maximum of 1 automaton and deploy a new one, the old one shorts out. Your thinking is more along the lines of the Switcheroo greater innovation (though I may have renamed that to Quick Swap - check both names).

2a. If you deploy an automaton the day before and keep the fellow out all night, congratulations, you start the day with an automaton deployed and a full day's worth of deployments. This is the biggest remaining hiccup in level 1 tinker balance. Nice job finding the break, hero :P

3. Nope. It merely exists to put a cost on invention distribution.

4. You pay for the entire tree, so 6 points. You are also correct regarding Monk and Shadowdancer. This was designed for two reasons.

1: Certain upgrade paths are mutually exclusive. (While we're at it, the only reason automatons get initiative bonuses is because although they act on your initiative, you're not always around. An Independence Script automaton, the alpha, even a poor mindless sap with innovations in place to allow it to defend itself and told to walk forward may have to act on its own.)

2: You don't need to look up three inventions that say +10, +10, +20 movement speed. It's all on one entry and condenses down what you need to know.

5. Regarding Designs, go wild and slap on as many as you wish. They are marked as Designs for two reasons. One, they generally give and take, which is a fun thing to set aside as a subtype. Two, an individual who invests heavily in innovations can dig to the Designer innovation and effectively increase his BP by 2, though in a limited set of inventions - the Designs. Again, though the Tinker is a pile of over 100 inventions and a bunch of innovations, it's still just a baby. Yes, it works. Yes, it's relatively well balanced. Yes, it's complicated as all getout (something I wish to keep doing in the future, as complexity and I get along quite nicely). Still, it could be more complex, more balanced, and more free-flowing. The fact that certain core ideas bring up questions is a sign that, at some level, I failed to deliver optimal product. If you pick up the actual manuscript, I'd love to hear your feelings regarding whether or not some of these issues vanish.

One of the reasons for Designs and the Designer innovation is simply to mark the place saying, "Yes, descriptors/subtypes can indeed exist for inventions!" It is my hope that by doing this, I give people the nudge needed to develop entirely new sets of inventions for the class based on what they want to do with it. As it is, I made multiple axes of modularity to make it fun for anyone to expand, including myself, of course. The Tinker is presently the strongest product I have. Should it keep being strong, I have no problem building more and more pieces for it until some sort of full-color, consumer art printed Kickstarter is actually a reasonable thing for its future.

6. A minelayer drops mines. Extending the size of a compartment is not something the addition of a new compartment does. It is treated as a separate entity. As such, a new flaskapult / lobtube is needed for each compartment you wish to use in this manner. That being said, should I ever find an excuse to add a bunch of new inventions, a "compartment extension" is suddenly near the top of the list, as it makes the ranged archetype less... dependent on the tinker if the investment is made.

Thanks for the questions. There's some good datapoints in there :)

-Brad Crouch

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Just want say: I love this:

"The Steelsinger - So, you have a bunch of robots. Awesome - make a band."

And given the way voting went, that'll come on out at 150 sales of the Tinker.

I've been looking over the class, and it is thoroughly delightful. I have a couple of questions, though.

1. Does the tinker have to spend time building the automatons before deploying them, and is there a related material cost?

2. I'm planning on house-ruling in some inventions (such as wings); is there any criteria you used to determine the BP cost?

3. The class gets some pretty intense buffs to craft, but aside from a cheaper way to restock 1 use items such as crossbows/bolts, what utility was it intended to have?

4. If a automaton was outfitted with 2+ crossbows, all equipped with reloading winches, could both be reloaded simultaneously, or is there a power constraint that limits the automaton to the normal number of actions per turn? This isn't really limited to crossbows; if my tinker were to make a horrifyingly large beetle-shaped automaton with mandibles comprised of one or more sets of sickles, would it get terrifying bite attack, or just be limited to a more reasonable number of attacks/amount of damage per turn?

5. Does it take time to redesign blueprints?

6. The tinker appears to be able to give his automatons repair kits, but doesn't seem to be able to repair them on his own. As I am relatively new to pathfinder, it is entirely possible I have missed something very obvious here.

7. Perhaps it is just me, but I feel that everyone would benefit if the tinker was able to tell their automatons to cling them as an unsettling approximation of armor. Fidgeting, potentially explosive armor that stares at everyone unsettlingly.

1. The tinker spends an hour getting all the standardized parts ready to go at the beginning of the day. If he doesn't spend that hour, he doesn't refresh his deployments.

2. I was actually considering wings. Eyeball it and have fun, though my design was going to hide wings behind an innovation, much like the potion injector. If there's enough call for it, I can dust off my materials and add another 50 inventions to the mix.

3. I am currently playing a level 8 tinker in the Slumbering Tsar and 1 rank in lots of craft skills ends up being incredibly useful once you've got yourself a business in The Camp. Be creative and it comes up a LOT.

4. An automaton can only have one of an invention unless stated otherwise. If I didn't put that down in the document, you found a bug and I suppose I owe you a bottom shelf product.

5. Happens during the answer to #1. Alpha can only be redesigned upon leveling.

6. That is correct. Automatons repair each other, then get thrown away. You represent the disposable society!

7. I've toying with an "Iron Man" prestige class. It's a terror to balance, what with the fact that a tinker can have 85 build points hanging off of him a level 20, but I'm getting there. So, no, not just you.

Good to know on #4; I may have to recalibrate some of my more heavily burdened designs. Either that, or ask my DM if I'm allowed to invent weapons. One way or another, I am intent on making a rideable large-sized scarab with pincers. With potion injectors, for injecting fluids into my friends, because I feel like if my creations aren't at least as menacing to my allies as they are to my enemies, I'm doing something horribly wrong.

Reviewed first on, then submitted to GMS magazine, Nerdtrek and posted about it here, on OBS and's shop. Cheers!

Thanks, mate!

Added to my list of artificer classes :)

Well, if you're counting my prestige classes and archetypes as separate entries because they're separate products, also list the Innovator and the Rogue Alpha. :)

Quick question about inventions. A number of them have skill ranks for a pre-req. to meet these requirements does the tinker need the skill or does the automaton?

2 others that I thought of as well,
1. If using a weapon mount does the bot deploy with a crossbow, if so what kind/size? If not can I place any crossbow in it including repeating ones?
2. If a bot has arms and a weapon mount and the arms are wielding an crossbow is it also proficient with that crossbow due to the weapon mount? Can it attack with both weapons at full base attack or does two weapon fighting apply?

Hej bulldogc, hope I can help:

The Tinker should have the skill requisites - since it is he who applies them to his automatons.

Regarding crossbows:

1. Size according to size of automaton, I guess - medium automatons get medium crossbows. As far as I've understood it. You could either choose light or heavy ones, since they both are simple weapons, but NOT the exotic weapons that are repeating crossbows - at least unless also taking the exotic weapon level 6 invention.

2. I think that you'd require two weapon flailing invention, granting you two weapon fighting and following the rules of that analogue to the entry of standard dual-wielding crossbows.

1. Correct.

2. He deploys with the specific kind of crossbow you trained him in. If you took Simple Weapon Mastery, you still need to select a single kind of crossbow, as a weapon mount only allows for a single weapon. The weapon size is understood to be the same as the automaton.

3. You've hit upon one of the grey areas of the supplement here. Let's go with my intent. Given automatons have been designed to be incapable of doing anything special that they have not been programmed to do, it should be impossible to two-weapon fight without the Two Weapon Flailing invention. With two-weapon fighting and a crossbow, an automaton with a weapon mount is able to utilize the crossbow in its arms as its primary and the weapon on its noggin as the offhand. At high levels, the offhand's fire rate will be dictated by the reload limit of a reloading winch, as well as that of the two-weapon fighting sequence the automaton can use. The primary crossbow can be reloaded as if it were the only crossbow being used due to the free hand that this interesting design of yours allows. Note that all penalties for two-weapon fighting with large crossbows will apply.

Now, this design of yours is still subject to GM interpretation. Say there is a monster with four arms and three crossbows. Can it reload all three crossbows with Rapid Reload as a plethora of free actions? If the answer is yes, then your automaton doesn't need a reloading winch and you may very well have broken the rate of fire gating I built into the class. That being said, the penalty to hit is going to be bad enough that this round of lateral thinking doesn't exactly worry me.

Keep ripping it apart, Bulldog. I might release a 2-3 page FAQ to cover the weirdnesses of the class design if more questions come on down.

Oh, and stay tuned. I'm releasing a magic items supplement that grabs healthy doses of the old school way to do things and the console games tabletop's evolution has been mirroring to make something both familiar and new at the same time.

I bought and downloaded the pdf last sunday (the 7th) and could not find anything about how many times per day the deploy automation has been used.

I thank you for adding that errata in this discussion, but I was wondering why it's still not in the document?



Aggwaa~ oogle *drool*!
Can't wait to try it out!!!


It is mentioned under Thick Armor that the automaton gets a +1 enhancement bonus to it's natural armour, does that mean that the automaton gets natural armour through some means other than inventions? Does this base ever increase?

Also, what movement type(s) does an automaton have? Automaton movement is never mentioned, however there are pictures of hovering and flying automatons in the pdf.

Weird, it shows up in my version. Oo
Guess it hasn't been uploaded/updated here yet...

...Really, now? I'm rather sure I went through and updated it everywhere. Huh, alright, now did you get it through this product or through the bundle? I'll immediately fix the borked area.

For reference, does the sidebar just before the invention book begins have some repetition with the FAQ near the end of the document? If so, that's version 1.1.

I bought it standalone - also I didn't see the new posts and updated my previous post with a P.P.S :P

Also, I can't see a sidebar - not at the beginning of the invention list, nor during/after the invention format section.
I also cannot see a sidebar near the FAQ section.
Are you referring to the two column layout? Or am I just blind?

Automatons only walk in the base product, though you can conceivably make them swim with some skills. Speed is as normal for critters of their size. (Small 20 feet, medium 30 feet.) And given that is literally the 4th time I've answered that question, I'll be updating the class to make that question go away... right after I finish two more overly complex flagship products with tiny oversights that bite me in the rear for months :P

Alternate mobility is the main selling point of Tinkering 201. Give the class a few sessions of play, see if you like it, then grab the extras if you want :)

The enhancement bonus to natural armor is simply to bring it in line with amulets of natural armor. As it is, I saw something like the Rogue Alpha archetype coming when I designed the base class and stopped that oversight before it had a chance to exist.

Toss an e-mail to and I'll get you a copy of the new version right now. The upload will take a day and the eye of the store ninja to go through and you're vibrating too hard to wait that long.

I've already grabbed Mechromancer and Rogue Alpha: just because of the awesome.

I didn't know about Tinkering 201, I'll probably have a look at it in the next few days-ish.

Thank you soo much for this awesome class!
I can't wait to try it out :) (next weekend, YAY!).

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Ya know, one day, I'm going to run into somebody like you playing one of my classes. That will be an utterly squee-worthy moment.

The Tome of Magic is the best supplement ever. Let ALL classes be made in its image, jury-rigged systems and all!

Ok, the fact that Amora Games is the first post on this thread and that it's for the Interjection Games version of the confusing.

And that the Amora Games version has ad space on my Tinker entry in the SRD store. I've come to accept that my class helps to sell theirs. Happy to do it given they don't holler for accidentally stealing the name.

Upload complete. Version 1.2 of the tinker will be out tomorrow. Version 1.3 will be out after I'm done with One Bling to Rule Them All and The Ethermancer: Weaver of Interuniversal Energies.

As for the time of that, I'm down to tables to integrate into the core rulebook, layout, and the creation of this last minute set of six items for One Bling to Rule Them All. Two days.

The Ethermancer has about 7,000 words to its name and will likely take a week of heavy work to complete and get on the beta track.


We've hit 150 sales of the Tinker! According to that thread oh so very long ago, I owe you gents a Steamsinger bard prestige class. I've got it roughdrafted on a notebook. Expect at least 4,000 words and a $2 price tag.

50 more sales to Super Mega Ultra Mecha Fighting for You Me and All of Our Friends! To be honest, Mecha was a joke offering to begin with. The idea that I'm actually sitting here expecting to be obligated to create that monstrosity in a month or so is just... overwhelming, to say the least.

We'll have to put our heads together and make some more stretch goals. What tinker weirdness do you want to see when the class hits 250 and 300 sales? More oddball archetypes and prestige classes that prove the tinker is capable of reindeer games with the muggle classes out there?

What about an alternate tinker archetype that doesn't make automatons at all, but instead has equipment with build points for a total "Iron Gnome" playstyle? Just imagine a hat that launches alchemist's fire using its own actions, boots that grant additional speed, and guantlets that crack off the Tornadic Rampage of Inexorable Pugilism. Of course, given the deployment system being what it is, the class would need a daily supply of batteries to recharge limited use per day inventions on the gear.

At this point, I think I've got the community's ear on this one, so it's time to get crazy and see how deep the rabbit hole goes!

Thanks for the response, some of the early examinations of these robot configurations has been head scratchy but they are slowly but surely being worked out :P
A couple of things that might be worth putting into the book for clarity is stuff like a sample level 1 automaton in a monster stat block style. 3.5 psionic (I suspect elsewhere as well) did this with the astral construct and it made recreating the creature on a pet sheet so much easier. The way things are laid out now a lot of questions remain unanswered definitively, for example, should they move at the normal 20 feet for a small creature, do they get the attack/ac modifiers for being small? Do they get the big strength/nat armor boosts and dex drops for eventually becoming large? a lot of these kinds of things could be very nicely summed up with 1 page of state blocks.
That said, still bought all of the books and I'm looking forward to becoming an innovator with my custom made gnomish shuriken launcher which will be mounting arms that fire 2 more shuriken launchers with a bot standing by to reload them:P
Also, would LOVE to see the "ironman" class, I'm already planning on throwing a cockpit into my gigadroid and "wearing" that around:P

I agree with bulldogc's suggestion of the monster stat block style.

The update was successful, I have downloaded it and can see the changes - thanks :).

Alrighty. Rather than tack everything into the primary document, which will cause a layout nightmare, I propose the FAQ and statblock as a separate document.

...Ya know, the amusing thing here is you're all asking for the pieces I purposefully cut out to make this product cheaper when it hit the market.

I'm only doing this because you all won't stop buying the blasted thing, savvy? :P

Interjection Games wrote:
And that the Amora Games version has ad space on my Tinker entry in the SRD store. I've come to accept that my class helps to sell theirs. Happy to do it given they don't holler for accidentally stealing the name.

As far as the ad goes that has nothing to do with us. I think that is SRD store coding. I've never paid for an ad to my knowledge.

As far as the name, it's just a name. :)

We really do love your tinker class though. The mechanics and fun are all in the right spots!

Aye, Mr. Reyst just decided to slap a widget down and the name populated out. That one NeoExodus class is also there.

Does giving the Automatons an int of 10 (from the Gavel Kind feature) give an automaton skills? Or do they gain feats like the Alpha?

Also, how do we determine the mental scores of a automaton? Are they just static 10 for wis and cha? Or are they simply " - " ?

I assume it does analogue to the way e.g. Lifespark constructs gain skills - i.e.(2 + Int modifier, minimum 1) x (HD +3).

Feat-wise, I'd go for feats according to HD that's usually the default way it's handled. And yes, that is powerful, but I assume it should be - as the capstone...

No clue regarding Wis and Cha, though personally, I'd go for 10.

...Yep, there's an oversight. I'll take care of this one when I add the free expansion to this product.

As it is, give feats at the same rate as the alpha and 2 + Int skills.

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