The Genius Guide to the Talented Cavalier (PFRPG) PDF

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The cavalier is one of the least flexible classes in the base rules. The class grants a single choice at first level (what order to join), and a very few bonus feat options (six over 20 levels, half of which must be teamwork feats and half combat feats), and no other opportunities for customization. The only other classes with so few customizable abilities are spellcasters, who can create very different types of characters with spell selection and complimentary feats. Certainly players can use weapon proficiency choices and the feats gained by all characters to fine tune a cavalier’s development, but in many ways doing so may actually weaken the character. A cavalier’s focus on mounted combat, and regular acquisition of abilities tied to charging, makes it difficult to justify not selecting the lance (which does double damage on a mounted charge) and the chain of feats that end in Spirited Charge (allowing the cavalier to deal triple damage with a lance charge).

And yet, for most players, cavaliers have come to represent the iconic knights of Western Europe, with a special mount, special abilities tied to challenging and charging foes, and an order that grants them real power. And with a few tweaks, they can also be used to represent the heavy cavalry of other civilizations, from Japanese samurai to Arabic furusiyya, Egyptian mamluks, Greek hippeus, or even Mongul horse archers. But, the further a character concept is from the core chivalric knight, however, the harder it is to make the cavalier feel right, even when many of the key functions of these different warriors castes are very similar.

So before building a “talented” version of the class, we must ask – just what defines the core concept of a cavalier, if it’s not their role as heavy cavalry or adherence to an order? If we create other class options, what makes a cavalier who decides not to focus on horseback charges and a knightly order different from fighters? Just what is the essence of the class as a whole, once a wider range of character concepts can be created by a more flexible design?

To answer that question, it’s important to look at the alternate class and archetypes that are tied to the cavalier in the core rules. It’s easy to see how samurai can be represented as Asian cavaliers (though the role is not a perfect match to historic samurai), but the various archetypes show an interesting trend as well. From emissaries to huntmasters to standard bearers, many of the cavalier archetypes are members of the ruling caste (or the sworn servants of that caste) who serve in a martial capacity without being tied to the role of heavy cavalry.

The Genius Guide to the Talented Cavalier is our answer to that question: a class designed around the idea of a warrior caste tied to the ruling class of society. Some cavaliers are clearly traditional knights and samurai, while others are clearly less so, but all cavaliers are trained to both fight and serve a role within their home culture. By using this broader idea of what a talented cavalier is, allowing both players and GMs to use the Talented Cavalier class to fill the ranks of noble knights, feared slave-warriors, honor-bound hunters, determined sheriffs, or even musketerrs in dutiful service to their queen.

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stepping outside my normal classes now

4/5

WHAT I EXPECTED:
Genius enough to make me want to use a class I know nothing about. In my Talented Fighter review, I said I'm not a fighter guy. I'm even less of a Cavalier guy. I don't know what book they are in. I know they are a dedicated mounted warrior and they belong to a knightly order. Why not expand Talented Fighter so that you could build a cavalier as a T/Ftr who specializes in mounted combat and gains talents based on what order he belongs to? The Talented Barbarian could be built as a decent horse-warrior and the T/Ftr even moreso...

WHAT I GOT:
So I started reading the Talented Cavalier and discovered they don't have to be mounted warriors. In fact, they don't even have to belong to an order, either. Diplomat, nobleman, knight, liege-sworn, military officer – huntsman, sheriff, emissary, samurai, explorer, conquistador. The T/Cav can be any – or several – of these. The hallmark of the class tends to be the T/Cav is someone who represents and speaks with authority, and the edges, talents, and orders support this. But they also support a great many other things, as well, opening up a host of diplomatic and political intrigue roleplaying opportunities. The T/Cav can belong to multiple – possibly conflicting – orders now, such as the order of the seal and the order of the cockatrice.

WHAT I THINK:
The Micronauts fan in me was sorely disappointed to see the T/Cav's mount is required to have a minimum of 4 legs, so no “dire emu” mounts! And I've already got an idea for an NPC patron who hires the PCs repeatedly, to take on various tasks that make no sense at all when they try to analyze them – because they are helping him further his objectives for multiple orders. But they don't know that. Or the campaign where a young nobleman from a family on the wrong side of a royal power struggle scrapes together an exploration voyage to carve a safe haven out on a foreign shore. Or an emissary who finds herself divested of her portfolio when her liege dies and his son, whose advances she'd rebuffed, takes the mantle and leaves her officially abandoned in a foreign land.

WHAT YOU SHOULD THINK:
If you want your games to have an element of duty to something other than empty purses, empty, bellies, and empty tankards – then I suggest you pick up Talented Cavalier. Give law and order a face, a purpose, and a draw for your players to respect.


An Endzeitgeist.com review

4/5

This 4th reimagining of a base-class to make it more customizable/versatile would be the cavalier, with the pdf clocking in at 30 pages, 2/3 of a page front cover, 1 page editorial/SRD, leaving us with 28 1/3 pages of content, so let's check this out!

Now on a basic level, the talented cavalier gets a full BAB, d10, 4+Int skills per level, proficiency with simple and martial weapons and light and medium armor and shields - yep, no standard heavy armor proficiency. The class also gets good fort-saves.

Now much like the monk-class, the cavalier gets edges and talents to choose from, but unlike the monk, the cavalier has some other potential issues: The base-class is EXTREMELY rigid. The talented cavalier is reimagined as essentially a retainer of a warrior (not the NPC-class) serving or belonging to the noble caste -and yes, this includes options one would associate with the samurai. Now unlike the monk, edges are spread throughout the levels - cavaliers start with 2 edges and get an additional edge at 4th level and every 3 levels after that. Conversely, not every level nets a talent - rather, talented cavaliers start game with 2 talents and get an additional one at every level they don't get an edge with the exception of the 10th level, at which the advanced talents become available. Much like previous installments, the origin-archetypes of the respective talents/edges are noted for ease of reference in brackets behind the abilities.

Exotic mounts, challenges, hunting companions (animal companion!) etc. are possible via edges - as are iaijutsu, challenges and a ranged option for challenge (yes!) are provided, as are the musketeer's options. Of course, the heavy armor proficiency can also be attained as an edge alongside the improved armored riding. What is weird, though, would be that there's no talent that nets you heavy armor proficiency alongside e.g. weapon-class proficiency - though e.g. the resolute-talent requires the use of heavy armors to work, it only requires a particular order-talent to work. Yes, orders have been broken down to multiple talents, but de facto, the power-progression, while still more versatile than the standard cavalier's, still hides some direct hierarchies of talents - more so than with other talented classes.

Like the other talented classes, advanced and grand talents expand the options/make for the capstones and yes, membership in multiple knightly orders is finally possible with this pdf. The pdf also provides an extensive list of talents by group, though honestly, I would have liked the order-list to have the respective order-themed talents be listed by order. Rather cool is the mention of overlap with the talented fighter, providing multiple solutions to allow for blending of the two - two thumbs up for that.

Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are very good, I didn't notice any significant glitches. Layout adheres to SGG's 3-column full-color standard with gorgeous pieces of artwork spread throughout. The pdf comes fully bookmarked.

The talented cavalier has a hard legacy to live up to - its base-class is considered one of the most rigid ones and breaking it down must have been a nightmare. Now first of all, the pdf does something VERY smart - it takes away the restriction of mounted combat-focus and provides a new focus - the noble warrior. I wholeheartedly applaud this focus ad love the spreading of edges throughout the levels. That being said, this pdf still let me down at a very high level - unlike the monk, I felt that the talented cavalier still was more focused on mounted combat and studded with "hidden" hierarchies than the monk - with so many talents requiring certain prerequisites, there's less customization, less freedom here than I personally would have liked. While e.g. options like the ranged challenge help a lot, the pdf could honestly have used more of them. Also, less order-specific talents/a more modular solution would have further improved this pdf. While I would have loved more support for unhorsed cavaliers, I guess you can't have everything - in the end, this would have benefited greatly from more talents - which have been provided as per the writing of this review. I can honestly see this particular installment requiring two more-talent-pdfs to provide the amount of flexibility of other classes - not due to a lack of design-knowledge on part of the Geniuses or designer Owen K.C. Stephens, but due to the base cavalier's very rigid structure.

In the end, this could have been the liberating strike for the class and only partially succeeds in the endeavor - there's nothing particularly wrong with it, but it also is a tad bit less brilliant than the superb take on the talented monk - still worth a rating of a solid 4 stars, though and this is in every way superior to the base cavalier class and should be considered a must-buy option for all endeavoring to play one.

Endzeitgeist out.


Every Good Mounted Combatant Needs a Running Start

3/5

Another month, another Class joins the Talented Line! I was really looking forward to this one, as the product's tagline basically strikes every single issue that I have with the cavalier / samurai class. I also love the idea that the theme for the cavalier is, "warrior of the noble caste." Very great theme and appropriate in my opinion. Let's see how SGG did with this product.

Crunch
I could be mistaken, but I'm fairly certain that the Talented Cavalier is the largest product in the Talented Classes line so far, weighing in at a hefty 30 pages. Like most of the "modern" Talented Classes, this product sticks to the edge / talent formula. Diving in a little bit deeper, you'll note several interesting things that this product does.

First, it breaks apart all of the Cavalier orders in the game into talents. This means that if you choose, you can have a cavalier who belongs to several different orders. Considering that this was fairly common in the real world, its a nice touch. Second, all of the archetypes and other abilities are available to play with here as far as I can tell. Finally, it ends with a neat section on how to incorporate Fighter talents with the Cavalier abilities. One thing I really loved about this product was the addition of a ranged-only challenge ability, called Mark. If you want to play a cavalier focused on fighting with ranged weapons, this product is the only way to do it well.

That said, while this product is large it does not feel as modular as the other ones do, mostly because over half of the abilities have prerequisites. Everything is tied to other abilities (especially order abilities, as the product itself notes) and while other Talented Line classes have really expanded their classes into a wide array of cool builds and abilities, this product's crowning achievement is the ability to essentially multi-order your cavalier. Perhaps the weirdest thing, in my opinion, is the utter lack of weapon proficiencies in this product. For example, there is no way to grab a samurai's proficiency with eastern weapons. It was especially jarring with the Weapon Expertise edge (originally a Samurai ability) noting that a GM should choose what weapons categories are appropriate for the cavalier. Ultimately I wasn't very impressed with the class. It has solid foundation, but a lack of customization aside from taking multiple orders and a lack of overall "noble" feel aside from what Paizo has already published really pulled me out of this one. 3 / 5 Stars.

Flavor
The Genius Guide to the Cavalier disappointed me flavor-wise. I got really excited when I read the description. Basing the Cavalier on the Noble Caste of Warriors from different civilizations the world over is an awesome idea and it was the sole reason I bought this product. I don't think the class delivered on this regard. Whereas the Samurai and the Cavalier separately felt very flavorful for their home inspirations, the Talented Cavalier feels like someone let a drop of chocolate mix into the vaniala ice cream. Its enough to be noticeable but not enough to be a savory twist flavor. While the trend thus far has been to have the first product in the series focus on adapting the 1PP class and then add more talents later, the cavalier needed more new material then it got, and I feel it shows in this product. 3 / 5 Stars.

Texture
The layout for this product is typical SGG style, although the one thing that I find very confusing is that the Orders are all chopped up. Parts of them are found under a unified Order talent which includes skill bonuses and Challenge/Mark bonuses, but all of the order abilities are mixed in with the rest of the talents. I've heard that this was to make it easier to look up those abilities during play, but in terms of character creation it is extremely awkward not being able to quickly figure out what abilities a specific order qualifies you for. Yes, I am aware that I could go check my Paizo books (the order abilities are unchanged), but if something is being reprinted, I feel like it should be kept in an easy-to-reference format, and this is not easy-to-reference. 4 / 5 Stars.

Final score & Thoughts
Crunch: 3 / 5
Flavor 3 / 5
Texture: 4 /5
Final Score: 3.5 / 5 Stars

I really wanted to like this product going in. Actually, that's not entirely accurate. I really wanted to LOVE this product going in, at least, in the same way that I LOVE the Talented Rogue or the Talented Monk. I think that more than anything, this product shows how poorly designed the standard cavalier is. The standard cavalier is so linear and uncustomizable that even the Geniuses couldn't save what's already been published for it. While its not perfect, I have high hopes that the Cavalier and Samurai will find new life in the Talented Line. My score might not be a perfect one, but I think that this product lays down the roots to make something truly great here. Now all Mr. Owens needs to do is design a bunch of new abilities that really drive home the fact that this class is supposed to be, dare I say it, a Noble Knight.

— Alexander "Alex" Augunas


Webstore Gninja Minion

Now available!

Contributor

Reviewed, and eagerly looking forward to More Cavalier Talents.

If any Talented Class truly needs the supplement, its this one.

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

As always, thanks for the review!

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

Ugh.

A talent failed to get from my playtest notes to the final product. Entirely my fault. It'll be added as soon as we can. Meanwhile, here it is.

Buke: (Samurai) The cavalier is trained in the fighting arts of the east. He is proficient in the katana, naginata, and wakizashi, as well as heavy armor.
A GM may decide to make similar talents available for other cultures, giving proficiency with up to four weapons and armor or shields with significance to a specific culture.

Contributor

I think this might have been my fastest one ever. :O

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

Now I'm checking to see if anything else didn't make it. So far that's it for then things that needed to be in this book.

I'd have loved to squeeze things like Cup Bearer and Castallan into this book, since I thought of them before it was out of layout, but the book is already SO BIG. They'll be in More Cavalier Talents.


What would those two (Cup Bearer and Castellan) be like?

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

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Castellan is for a cavalier who can run a manor or castle in his lrod's place.

Cup Bearer is for those cavaliers who are so trusted...

Oh heck with it, I'll do a preview of the inevitable More Cavalier Talents.

Castellan (Ex): The cavalier is trained to run a castle, manor, or settlement (either as a vassal of his liege, or in his lord’s place when the lord is away). The cavalier is treated as having Profession Profession (clerk) as a trained skill, with a special check equal to 1d20 + cavalier level + Wisdom modifier +3.
Additionally if the cavalier has the banner talent, he can fly his banner from the flagpole of a stronghold or settlement he is officially assigned to serve. In this case, the banner affects all staff and residents subject to the cavalier’s orders within the stronghold or settlement, rather than its normal area.

Cup Bearer (Ex): The cavalier is so trusted and beloved that he has been allowed to serve as cup-bearer for his king or other important lord – a position only granted to those believed to be so honorable they would never poison their lord or allow magic elixirs to be mixed into his drinks.
As a standard action, the cavalier may attempt to detect poison on an item he is holding (including any magic elixir, potion, or alchemical material with detrimental effects). This is a Perception check, with a DC equal to the save DC of the poison in question. A successful check identifies only that the item is poisoned -- though if the cavalier has Craft (alchemy) or Craft (poisons) he may make a Craft check with the same DC to identify the exact poison or elixir.
If the cavalier wishes to taste an object to see if it is poisoned he gains a +5 bonus to his Perception check to detect poison, but he also exposes himself to any potential poison. The cavalier must make a save against any effect of a poison or magic effect if one is present, though he receives a +2 circumstance bonus to this save (as he can take a very small taste).

Contributor

That is precisely the level of awesome that this product needs.

I'm glad that my hunch about More Cavalier Talents making this product even better was on the right track.

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

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I'll be honest, I was surprised how BIG the Talented Cavalier was with the additions I had already made. Thirty pages!?
Talented Fighter was 14 pages, less than HALF this thing's size. Talented Rogue came close at 27, but it wasn't any more work than the fighter since so many of its options were already talents.
Talented Monk was a beast at 27 pages and a massive need to adjust everything, but I knew that was coming and had begun work on it before any of the others.
But this project is at least as much work-per-item to produce (and maybe more to playtest) than monk, and bigger by 3 pages besides. I like pricing a line uniformly, so despite the last 3 talented classes being double the size of Talented fighter we haven't raised the price but... woof. There's a reason these take so long despite being so popular.
More Cavalier Talents, however, just flowed off my keyboard the split second I turned to it. Once I had the cavalier redesigned so you could make a functional, useful cavalier with no challenge, no charge, and no order, ideas of how to expand that came easily.
But it still takes time to playtest, edit, and lay out so...


I wouldnt have though it was POSSSIBLE to make the cavalier a flexible, interesting class usable for a wide range of concepts. I am THRILLED to see I would have been wrong!

While I'm also really looking forward to more things like Cup Bearer, I have to say the options as-is are great. I'm writing up a king, his royal guard, and his hawk-keepers, and the cavalier is great for ALL of them!


Is the mount still baked in?

Contributor

RJGrady wrote:
Is the mount still baked in?

No. Its a very interesting turn of how you get Mount.

Basically, the talented cavalier is not proficient with Heavy Armor from the get-go. Instead, there is an edge that gives you Heavy Armor and the Mount ability. Owen mentioned that his reasoning was that a bunch of archetypes give up mount AND Heavy Armor Proficiency, so it made sense.

The only spot of weirdness that I could find because of this is that now the Sword Saint Samurai isn't automatically proficient with Heavy Armor.

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

RJGrady wrote:
Is the mount still baked in?

No, as Alexander Augunas mentioned the mount is now one really-appealing edge, but optional. If you prefer a more ranged-weapon or infantry-focused build, those are options (as you can skip the charge choices, as well).

Well, here -- here's the list of edges, talents, advanced talents, and grand talents:

Battlefield Command/Tactics
Awesome pennon (grand talent)
Banner
Banner of solace (advanced talent)
Drill instructor
Greater banner (advanced talent)
Master tactician (advanced talent)
Mounted legion
Strategic supremacy (advanced talent)
Tactical advantage (advanced talent)
Tactician
Versatile challenge (edge)

Dilettante
Bonus feat
Talent (edge)

Heavy Cavalry
Battlefield agility
Cavalier’s charge
Erratic charge (advanced talent)
Expert trainer
Heavy cavalry (edge)
Mighty charge (advanced talent)
Mounted dervish (advanced talent)
Mounted mastery
Supreme charge (grand talent)
Warding charge (advanced talent)

Honor/Duty
Greater resolve
Honorable stand
Last stand (grand talent)
My word is law (advanced talent)
Resolve
True resolve (advanced talent)

Hunter/Master of Beasts
Animal trainer
Exotic mount (edge)
Harry
Hunting pack (edge)
Huntmaster
Improved quarry (grand talent)
Pack attack (advanced talent)
Quarry (advanced talent)
Swift tracker
Takedown

Master of Melee
Brutal slash
Challenge (edge)
Defensive challenge (advanced talent)
Iaijutsu strike (edge)
Improved iaijutsu strike (edge)
Intercept
Lord of battle (grand talent)
Over my dead body (advanced talent)
Roaring iaijutsu (advanced talent)
Sworn defense
Terrifying iaijutsu
Weapons expertise

Musketeer/Archer
Careful aim
Distracting mark (advanced talent)
Infuriating aim
Lure (edge)
Mark (edge)
Mounted archer
Royal musketeer (edge)
Supreme aim (grand talent)
Swift powder

Nobleman/Envoy
Aristocrat (edge)
Baronet (edge)
Fleet of foot
In or out of the saddle
Introduction
Mounted acrobatics
Transcend language
Truer words

Order
Act as one (advanced talent, order of the dragon)
Adaptive strike (order of land)
Adept disarmer (order of the penitent)
Aid allies (order of the dragon)
Arcane vessel (order of the staff)
Braggart (order of the cockatrice)
By My Honor (order of the sword)
Calling (order of the star)
Chosen destiny (advanced talent, knight errant/ronin)
Defensive knowledge (advanced talent, order of the tome)
Expert captor (order of the penitent)
Flat of the blade (order of the blue rose)
For the faith (order of the star)
For the king (order of the lion)
Honor in all things (order of the warrior)
I shall not be moved (order of the seal)
Inner peace (order of the blue rose)
Keeper (order of the seal)
Knight’s challenge (advanced talent, order of the sword)
Lion’s call (order of the lion)
Moment of triumph (advanced talent, order of the cockatrice)
Order
Powerful knowledge (order of the tome)
Protect the meek (advanced talent, order of the shield)
Resolute (order of the shield)
Retribution (advanced talent, order of the star)
Saving grace (advanced talent, order of the penitent)
Self reliant (knight errant/ronin)
Shield of blades (advanced talent, order of the blue rose)
Shield of the liege (advanced talent, order of the lion)
Specialized knowledge (order of the tome)
Spell aid (order of the staff)
Staggering assault (advanced talent, order of the seal)
Steal glory (order of the cockatrice)
Stem the tide (order of the shield)
Strategy (order of the dragon)
Strike true (advanced talent, order of the warrior
Synchronized smash (advanced talent, order of the staff)
Terrain training (order of land)
Way of the samurai (order of the warrior)
Wild charge (advanced talent, order of land)
Without master (knight errant/ronin)

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

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As some folks know, I often write untested feats on the Super Genius Games Facebook wall inspired by recent SGG products. Despite Gen Con, I plan to do one each day this week, inspired by the Talented Cavalier. Tagged as #Microfeats, these come with the explanation "Microfeats are experimental feats we have in playtesting or development (and may well change before they ever get used in a product – or may get cut entirely). "

I don't normally post those elsewhere, or specifically compile them. (Many do end up in some form in later SGG products, after they have gone through the full playtest/develop/edit cycle. Some don't.)

There has, in the past, been some suggestion people would like to see a compiled pdf of all these feats inspired by one product. I'm not convinced enough people are interested to make that a good use of my time... but I could be wrong!

This week I'll post each cavalier-related #Microfeat from Facebook here, as well. If each microfeat post I make gets at least one comment from someone by next Tuesday (when I should get home from Gen Con), I'll have them compiled into a short, simple, free pdf.

So, here we go!

Mounted Focus. You have trained to get the most out of specific types of mounts in combat. Select one creature that makes an appropriate mount for your race. You gain a +3 bonus to Ride checks made when riding creatures of this type. Additionally, when you are mounted on a steed of that type that has the combat training general purpose (see Handle Animal), the steed gains +1 to attacks and +2 to damage with natural weapons.
You may take this feat more than once. Its effects do not stack. Each time you take it, it applies to a different type of steed.

Liberty's Edge

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This might be a swell time to also point out a few other cavalier releases from the great Super Genius Games :?

Advanced Options: Cavaliers' Orders

Advanced Options: More Cavalier Orders

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

Indeed, and fans of those orders should have no problem adapting them to the Order talent in Talented cavalier. :D

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

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Okay, here is the second #Microfeat. So far no comments on the first one...

Thundering Hooves. Prereq. Ride 1 rank, Mounted Combat, Ride-By Attack, base attack bonus +6. You gain additional options when mounted on the battlefield.
1. When mounted you may charge a target as long as the last 20 feet of movement before the charge qualifies for a normal charge. Movement taken before the last 20 feet can include movement not in a straight line, through difficult terrain, or through spaces containing other creatures. All other rules of charge normally.
2. When you ride a steed past an ally and your steed has room for another rider, you may choose to allow that ally to attempt to quick mount your steed. This counts against the number of attacks of opportunity that ally may make this round, and the ally must have an attack of opportunity available to attempt to mount. Once per round, you may choose to make the Ride check to quick mount, rather than force your ally to do so. If the check fails, the ally does not mount but does not lose a move action.

Silver Crusade

Mounted Focus

I like how it grants the selected mount type an extra bonus to both attack and damage. It's kinda of like a weird hybrid of Skill Focus, Weapon Focus, and Weapon Specialization.

Thundering Hooves

This feat needed to have been around sooner. I especially love the first option. Though I'm assuming that you meant that 'all other rules of charge apply normally' as opposed to 'all other rules of charge normally', right?

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

Blayde MacRonan wrote:

Thundering Hooves

This feat needed to have been around sooner. I especially love the first option. Though I'm assuming that you meant that 'all other rules of charge apply normally' as opposed to 'all other rules of charge normally', right?

Thanks!

And yes, yes I did. That's the drawback of allowing undeveloped, unedited feats into the light of day. :D

Silver Crusade

Why use attack of opportunity as opposed to say, a swift or immediate action? Don't get me wrong, I like that alot. It's just that as far as actions go, it's one I would have never thought of using. Guess that's why you're the genius. ;)

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

I envisioned it as a variation of the person riding by provoking an attack of opportunity from his ally, who uses it to grab hold and swing up.

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

Okay I missed Wednesday, as a result of my trip to Gen Con taking many hours more than planned. But here is a cavalier-themed #Microfeat for today!

Vital Charge. Prereq: Ride 6 ranks, Mounted Combat, Vital Strike, base attack bonus +6. When mounted, you may use Vital Strike with a single attack each round made as part of a charge attack. If you have abilities that affect vital strike (such as Devastating Strike, Greater Vital Strike, Improved Vital Strike), they also apply to your mouned charges.
Normal: Vital Strike may only be sued with an attack action, not a charge.

Shadow Lodge

Looks cool. =) Admittedly it's no good for me because I subscribe to the common house-rule that you can use VS on a charge anyway, but for those who don't it's a nice opener for versatility for using the feat.

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

Yeah, it is a VERY common house rule. And I'd never encourage anyone using the houserule to switch to this feat. But if someone doesn't have that houserule and wants to allow more charge options at a feat-cost...

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

Okay, one more before I head out into the Caves of Djenkhan!

Critical Charge. Prereq: Ride 8 ranks, Critical Mastery, Mounted Combat, Ride-By Attack, Spirited Charge. If you hit a target with a Spirited Charge you may choose to deal normal damage (rather than triple damage), and apply any Critical Feat you know (as if the attack had been a critical hit, but dealing normal damage).


Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:


There has, in the past, been some suggestion people would like to see a compiled pdf of all these feats inspired by one product. I'm not convinced enough people are interested to make that a good use of my time... but I could be wrong!.

Sounds like a Bullet Point to me.

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

Certainly we could do it as a free Bullet Point!


I bought this today and I like it. I think it's precisely what the Cavalier needed. It gives the Cavalier the flexibility it needed. Looking forward to More Cavalier Talents!!


So I thought perhaps I had designed the A-Team as an all-T/Rogue party. But it seems perhaps Col Smith is a T/Cavalier with some T/Rogue milticlass. Great. T/Cav was an iffy purchase earlier ... but I should have known better. It may be #4 on the list of Talented Classes to pick up, but I'll have to pick it up.


Any updates on future talented class pdfs? Ranger, Barbarian, Cleric?

Silver Crusade

The Talented Barbarian is supposed to be coming down the pike next, if what I saw from Owen on Facebook nearly a month ago was any indication.

Awesome Cover Pic

Looking forward to seeing that when it drops.

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

Talented Barbarian is next. It'll be a few weeks yet.


This lul is killing me. I need more of these classes.

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

They're still coming. We're just having a gap. :)


Resolve talent says you must have the Resolve edge before selecting it.

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

RJGrady wrote:
Resolve talent says you must have the Resolve edge before selecting it.

Yep. Believe it or not that's a cut-and-paste error. The resolve talent doesn't have a prerequisite.

I'm working on errata lists for all of these. Thanks.


My pleasure. :)


Is it intended for the Talented Cavalier to gain one Cavalier edge at level 4 (according to table on page 2), when the vanilla Cavalier would gain Challenge (edge) and Expert Trainer (talent)? Same on level 12...

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

The talented cavalier does gain an edge at 4th, and rather than 12th gains one at 13th.

If you are asking if they are also supposed to gain a talent at those levels, the answer is no. And yeah, that means you can't (quite) make the core rules cavalier with the talented cavalier. Like the problem with the envoy, this is a result of extensive playtesting.

Flexibility, especially when adding things like resolute and the power to take more than one order, is often it's own form of power. I wanted to make the class as flexible as possible, but avoid power creep. and, in fact, cavalier's challenge is pretty dang potent. It's really close to a smite evil you can drop on anyone rather than just evil folks.

And while I don't think the core cavalier is overpowered (though put them where they can make a charge and they are HUGE damage-dealers), if you swap their weakest talents out for the most powerful new options, and they overrode their playtests.

That left me with three basic choices -- further restrict what options I include in the talented books (which I didn't want to do), create *yet* another classification beyond edges, talents, advanced talents, and grand talents (likely minor talents, but the whole idea tested really poorly among playtesters and alpha readers), or accept you couldn't perfectly recreate the core class through all levels.

I went with the third option, since the core class is till available for anyone who prefers it.


Thanks for the reply. Much appreciated.

I absolutely agree that the versatility itself is worth enough to justify some sort of cost compared to the standard cavalier.

All in all I think its a great way to costomize a character and I especially like the non combat-oriented additions that actually allow me to taylor a character according to the background (Aristocrat for example).

So thank you for a great addition to my rpg-experience - it really comes in handy - and keep up the great work!

Scarab Sages Contributor; Developer, Super Genius Games

You're most welcome on all counts

And if you like things like aristocrat, and you haven't already picked it up, you might give The Genius Guide to More Cavalier Talents a look. :)


Reviewed first on Endzeitgeist.com, then submitted to Nerdtrek and GMS magazine and posted here, on OBS and d20pfsrd.com's shop. Cheers!


As promised, here's my review.

Scarab Sages Contributor

I somehow missed my traditional thanks to End for a review. Thanks, Endzeitgeist!

And, as always, thanks to Doc_Outlands for his new review!

Shadow Lodge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

These are incredibly good classes, having them all I can say I recommend them to anyone. I just wish they had herolab files to support them.

Scarab Sages Contributor

We *are* working on HL files, but it turns out that's at least as much work as designing the classes to begin with.

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