Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Ultimate Intrigue (PFRPG)

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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Ultimate Intrigue (PFRPG)
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Words Cut Deep

In the right setting, a single scathing word can prove deadlier than a poisoned dagger. Behind the scenes of heroic battles and magical realms lies a seething underbelly of danger and deception. This world of intrigue holds endless possibilities for adventure, as heroes duel with words instead of steel, plot daring heists, and engage in battles of wills against relentless nemeses. A high-stakes game of shadows and secrets is yours to master—if you have the wits!

Whether the heroes are taming the blood-soaked back alleys of their favorite metropolis or jockeying for the queen's favor alongside highborn nobles, Pathfinder RPG Ultimate Intrigue is an invaluable companion to the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook. This imaginative tabletop game builds upon more than 10 years of system development and an Open Playtest featuring more than 50,000 gamers to create a cutting-edge RPG experience that brings the all-time best-selling set of fantasy rules into a new era.

Pathfinder RPG Ultimate Intrigue includes:

  • The vigilante, a new character class that lives two lives—that of an unassuming member of the community, and a cloaked crusader with his own agenda!
  • New archetypes for alchemists, bards, druids, hunters, inquisitors, investigators, mesmerists, rangers, rogues, slayers, spiritualists, and more!
  • New feats and magic items for characters of all sorts, granting mastery of street-smart combat, impenetrable disguises, and misdirection.
  • Dozens of spells to manipulate tense social settings, whether to reveal adversaries' secrets or hide the truth.
  • A complete system of influence, providing new goals and rewards to challenge players and link their fortunes to nonplayer characters and organizations.
  • Systems and advice to help Game Masters introduce a variety of new encounters into their games­—daring heists, extended pursuits, and tense searches for buried secrets.
  • Rules for social combat and verbal duels, allowing characters to use words as weapons to sway hearts and humiliate foes.
  • ... and much, much more!

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-826-7

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A Must-Have for Heavy RP Games

5/5

Okay, let's get into Ultimate Intrigue! As the title implies, the purpose of this book is to help flesh out more subtle elements of the game: things like spreading rumors, rallying a crowd, stealing secrets, and other classic cloak-and-dagger stuff. I've used bits and pieces of it in previous campaigns, but read through it carefully (and incorporated a fair bit of it) for my current Curse of the Crimson Throne campaign, as that adventure path is designed around urban political strife. Boiled down to brass tacks, the book is a 256 page hardcover comprised of six chapters. The full-colour artwork is very strong throughout, and the cover is great (though Merisiel's legs are like three times longer than her torso!). There's a very short two-page introduction that summarises each chapter--which is what I'm going to do anyway.

Chapter 1 is "Classes" (60 pages). The big deal here is a new base case, the Vigilante. The concept is that the character has both a normal (social) identity and a masked identity, with certain class options only working while in the associated guise. There are also several safeguards to help keep anyone from figuring out that Bruce Wayne is really Batman. I have a Vigilante character in Pathfinder Society, and one of my players runs one in Curse of the Crimson Throne. I think the class is perfect for an urban campaign mostly set in a single city (especially with lots room for intrigue), but it doesn't work as well with the more traditional "travelling adventuring party" campaign. It's a bit too obvious when five newcomers arrive in town, only for one of them to "disappear" and a new costumed avenger show up. I know there are also some gamers who dislike what can seem like the awkward introduction of comic book super heroes into their fantasy role-playing. For me, I think the concept works well--though as I said, only in particular types of campaigns.

A large chunk of the chapter is devoted to new archetypes for other classes. More specifically, alchemists, bards, cavaliers, druids, inquisitors, investigators, mesmerists, rangers, rogues, skalds, spiritualists, swashbucklers, and vigilantes get some love. Frankly, a lot of the archetypes are fairly forgettable, but there are exceptions--for example, a Daring General Cavalier would be great in military campaigns, the Dandy Ranger could be really useful in an urban campaign, and a couple of the vigilante archetypes are perfect if you want to play the Hulk or Spider-Man. Although the rogue archetypes aren't very good, there are several excellent rogue talents that focus on making the character harder to track through divination, etc. It's worth nothing that this book came out during the period when the hardcover line was still setting-neutral, so there won't be any Golarion-specific flavour with the archetypes (for better or worse depending on your preferences).

Chapter 2 is "Feats" (24 pages). There's something like 110 new feats in the chapter, and probably something for everyone. Given the book's theme, many of the feats are related to sneaking around, hiding and disguising spells, stealing stuff, making plans, figuring out when you're being to lied to, etc. A few that I particularly like include Brilliant Planner (giving you the chance to have just what you need just when you need it), Call Truce (giving a slim chance to actually end combat peacefully when its underway), and Drunkard's Recovery (silly but fun). A couple of important feats are Conceal Spell (which hides the pesky manifestations that spells create in Pathfinder) and Fencing Grace (adding Dex to damage with rapiers, a favourite of swashbucklers everywhere). Overall, I thought the options presented were well-written and plausible in terms of desirability.

Chapter 3 is "Mastering Intrigue" (68 pages). This is probably the most important chapter in the book for GMs. It offers tons of useful advice, as well as clarification on some tricky game mechanics, to help run intrigue-based games. The pages about how common magic spells can be handled while still preserving mysteries, secrets, and misdirection is pure gold. The chapter also introduces seven new rules sub-systems, any or all of which can be incorporated into a campaign to flesh out certain aspects of gameplay. "Influence" is a sub-system that deepens the process of persuading a person or organisation to support you. Instead of a simple single Dipomacy check, PCs need to make certain skill checks to learn a person's interests and weaknesses, and then other skill checks to take advantage of what they've learned. The process operates through multiple phases of tracked successes and failures, and can be tied to mechanical favours and benefits. It's become a very popular facet of many Pathfinder Society scenarios, and I think it's a pretty clever way to handle things--though it can be a bit clunky at first. "Heists" is a sub-system that contains some excellent advice to GMs on how to structure things so players don't obsess over unimportant trivia and are willing to violate that old canard of "don't split the party." "Infiltration" contains some quick advice, but that's about it. "Leadership" deepens the feat of the same name, adding lots of rules for interacting with other sub-systems both in this book and in Ultimate Campaign. I'm personally still not persuaded that the Leadership feat chain is a good inclusion to the game. "Nemeses" is all about adding a recurring villain; I think it's trying to systematise something that could be handled just fine without it. Though there are some fun suggestions on evil plots to foil. "Pursuit" is a little like the Chase sub-system from the GameMastery Guide but stretched out over hours and days cross-country instead of in minutes through alleyways. I could imagine using it. "Research" is probably my favourite of the sub-systems, and one I've used in multiple campaigns. In essence, it gives the PCs a reason to use things like libraries and archives by giving them bonuses to their Knowledge checks, but then makes gaining different thresholds of information the result of multiple successful checks. Overall, a great chapter--I wish the Influence and Research sub-systems had been in the Core Rulebook, because they really add a lot to the non-combat aspects of the game.

Chapter 4 is "Social Combat" (25 pages). The idea here is to present GMs with options on how to handle social conflicts--things like debates, trials, cutting repartee, etc. There's also a "verbal duels" sub-system. I'm just not sure about it--it's something I'd have to see in practice. However, a really useful part of the chapter is advice to the GM on how to handle the various social skills in the game--Bluff, Diplomacy, Intimidate, and Sense Motive--as well as the intrigue skills like Disguise, Perception, and Stealth. The advice here is excellent, and I just stopped in the middle of this review to reread it.

Chapter 5 is "Spells" (40 pages). You can judge from the length of the chapter that there's a ton of new spells, and every spellcasting class will find something. One of the fun things the chapter introduces is a new "ruse" descriptor for spells, which means the spell is easily mistaken for another even by observers trained in Spellcraft or Knowledge (arcana). It's a good way to mislead folks who have played way too much Pathfinder. There are some really clever spells in this section, with a couple of my favourites including false resurrection (instead of bringing back a soul, you stuff a demon into the body!) and the hilarious shamefully overdressed.

Chapter 6 is "Gear and Magic Items" (22 pages). There are some new mundane pieces of equipment (weapons like the cool wrist dart launcher, alchemical items, etc.) but most of the chapter is new magic items with an intrigue theme. The one that really stuck out at me was the launcher of distraction, which is perfect for assassination attempts because it makes it seem like the attack is coming from somewhere else.

Overall, I think Ultimate Intrigue is an excellent book. It's pretty much a must-have in my opinion for any campaign that's going to involve a lot of role-playing or that moves beyond traditional dungeon crawling and wilderness encounters. Even readers not involved in "intrigue campaigns" per se are sure to find plenty of material they can use.


1/5

Don't get me wrong I love Paizo books, I love their work, and I'm proud to own almost all of their publications.

However, Ultimate Intrigue is the one book I regret buying. It's even more than that, it's the one book i regret they ever published.

We need rules and systems, ok. We need a magic system because magic isn't a real thing. We need a combat system otherwise playing with your grilfriend become home abuse. But we don't need a social system because it's a ROLEPLAYING game. Either you want intrigue heavy campaign and you roleplay them, or you want to dungeon crawl or investigate (that's fine too) and you don't play intrigues. You can even do both and it's great.

Aside from that massive problem, the book suffers from "a turn normal actions into feats/class ability" syndrome. I can't count the number of time where players made me fighters to wizards or rogues with a dual identity. We didn't need the Vigilante, and still don't. And I loved when wizard use to get clever and ask for linguistics/bluff roll to blend a spell into a phrase. Now you need a feat for it. Thanks, Ultimate Intrigue. If that was not enough, some of these nonsense feat are built in feat tax chains.

But the one thing I hate the most about this book is the stupid FAQ it bestowed upon us to promote itself (https://paizo.com/paizo/faq/v5748nruor1fm#v5748eaic9tza). That makes a whole school of magic (illusion) utterly useless, and destroys a lot of others (enchantment).

Now I know I can just refuse to use it. But i use to love pathfinder for the clarity and perfect sense with out need to houserule much.

Now it's gone.


I'm tired of paizo trying to stuff this book down our face

1/5

If I was playing a home campaign this book might be more fitting,

For society play this verbal debate and other ideas for this book really bog down the game play. I like social aspect of games and role playing but as I said society play it slows the game way down to try and get people up to snuff on the mechanics


An amazing new class in a hit and miss supplement

4/5

So, Ultimate Intrigue took a long time for me to come to a complete opinion on.

The Vigilante class introduced in this book is, in my opinion, easily the best non-spellcasting class Paizo has ever created. It breaks up its social options and combat options in such a way that you have a great character able to participate in all areas of the game without having to choose whether you want to be competent in combat or in the myriad other facets of the game like exploration, social encounters, etc. It has deep and well-designed talents that allow you to pick any of a variety of different ways to participate in combat, with or without weapons, and numerous tools for allowing players to influence the story with safe houses, contacts, and more.

At PAX Prime 2016 I had the opportunity to visit Paizo's Pathfinder demo area and play their pregenerated vigilante character. I honestly didn't expect it to go terribly well; after all, the vigilante is a class built around balancing two identities and moving between different social strata, so you'd think that this would require a more controlled environment where you know the other players in advance and have time to plan out how your character fits into the game world with your GM ahead of time, right? Turns out, I was wrong. The vigilante class is well-crafted enough that even while playing a 1st level pregen I was able to easily deal with situations in and out of combat, and it took me about 60 seconds of conversation to establish with the group that I had a secret identity they were privy to and might need them to cover for my character from time to time if he needed to swap identities. It didn't hurt matters that the only downside to anyone learning a vigilante's secret identity is that, well, they know his or her secret identity. You can go all Tony Stark if you want, announce that you are Iron Man, and carry on as normal. Very few of the vigilante's abilities actually require you to maintain truly secret identities, and the only real hit you take is that you're a bit easier to find by magical means (though even this can be addressed with clever use of the Safe House Social Talent).

The book also elaborates on the intent behind numerous spells that often prove problematic for GMs in games where they want to have a focus on gritty investigation of mystery, such as the various detect spells, speak with dead, etc.

I think my biggest disappointments with the book, and the reason I can't give it 5 stars, lie in the feats and archetypes. I'll start with the feats, and a bit about why I see most of them as representative of missed opportunities.

To start with, Pathfinder's skill system is heavily dated. When Paizo brought it over from 3.5, they combined a few extraneous skills, but otherwise did little to update things, meaning the core area of the rules covering everything in the game that isn't casting spells or hitting things is now well over a decade old and out of date. Several skills don't even actually work, or work well, as written, have interactions you're just supposed to kind of assume or make up (Ride and Handle Animal are a mess, Stealth requires one to check out FAQs and blog posts online to use as intended, Bluff and Diplomacy have more than a few vague areas and inconsistencies, etc.), so what better book to address, update, and expand these core components of the game than a book about playing skill and intrigue heavy campaigns? Unfortunately, Paizo chose not to go that route, instead relying on feats to stretch skills over their gaps and issues, leading to many of the feats in the this book providing skill uses that I've seen GMs at hundreds of tables houserule as basic functions of those skills to begin with. Instead of formalizing intuitive uses of existing skills into their basic function, they added a feat tax to allow characters to do things many people already thought they could do. While there is a section in the book going over several of the vague areas in a few key skills, these are primarily common sense clarifications instead of the full address the skills could have used.

The archetypes, like many Paizo hardcovers, are all over the place. Some of them are interesting and dynamic, like the Masked Performer bard archetype, some show an attempt at embodying a cool and modern concept but fail to achieve that concept in the actual execution, like the Magical Child vigilante archetype, and some are just plain bad, so obviously terribly designed that you almost wonder if the person who wrote them has ever actually played Pathfinder, like the Brute vigilante archetype.

Now, don't let the above wall of negativity mislead you; there is a lot of great stuff in this book, including perhaps the most inspired and well-crafted class Paizo has ever produced, a class that introduces really interesting design concepts, plays with components of the class chassis we haven't seen classes treat as quite so malleable before, and is a genuinely fun and interesting class to play in and of itself. Despite many of the feats ranging from useless to frustrating, there are still quite a few that are interesting and viable, and while the archetypes are very hit or miss, that's generally true of Paizo books in general and probably shouldn't be held against this one in particular.

My final verdict on Ultimate Intrigue is 4 stars, and a strong recommendation to pick it up, if for no other reason than to add the Vigilante class to your game (though there definitely are other reasons to add this book to your collection).


Pathfinder presents Batman!

4/5

No seriously. The vigilante class is freaking batman. Look at the art for chapter one and for the character. HE'S BATMAN. Of course they also have archetypes if you want to make Hulk, Sailor Moon, even He-Man. With the archetypes from other books the list goes on.
My favorite part, and I cannot wait to test this properly in a game, is the social combat. It works a lot like playing craps or roulette. You get a pool of Determination points which you use to place a bet then you roll off with your social skills check! Seriously it sounds like lots of fun!


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So, any word if Mind Blank does work against True Seeing?


magnuskn wrote:
So, any word if Mind Blank does work against True Seeing?

Surprisingly, of all the spells mentioned in the "Spells of Intrigue" section, True Seeing was NOT one of them. All the other core spells that could be used, or foil, intrigue gameplay was mentioned. Heck, even a non-core spell was mentioned (Blood Biography). But, no True Seeing?

I don't know if this was intentional or not...but it sure is intriguing...

Judging by the text of advice the chapter gave, it looks to me as if they were implying that "Yes, Mind Blank works against True Seeing." But this is only implied, nothing is concrete in it about it at all.


An interesting note, the spell Undetectable Trap is perfect for those pesky "I use Detect Magic and automatically find all magic traps" situation.

The problem is, just like the Mask Dweomer spell, is limited in who can cast it. (Mask Dweomer is Witch only...why it didn't go to Sor/Wiz and/or Bard is beyond me).

Undetectable Trap is only for Antipaladin, Occultist, and Ranger. I would have given this to Cleric and Sor/Wiz as well. Strange design choice.


magnuskn wrote:
So, any word if Mind Blank does work against True Seeing?

Further inspection of the book, I do see something that may make it more solid that Mind Blank works against True Seeing.

There is a spell in this book called Unerring Tracker, where once you identified a trail left by a creature, you can cast this spell to follow the trail automatically at any speed that you can as long as you keep the trail within line of sight.

The spell is a Divination spell and has a range of Personal, just like True Seeing, and the spell specifically mentions that it bypasses that target's Nondetection spell if it has it on, but not its Mind Blank.

That is as close as we got to an official answer.


I've read that there are new charm spells in the book, which sounds good for Infernal bloodline sorcerers. Just what are these spells?


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Barachiel Shina wrote:
I gotta say, I am really liking the Ruse spells in this book. I hope to see more of them in the future.

Are you sure you've already seen some? ;)

Sovereign Court

I have a question for any designers or any rules-savvy people who also have the book:

Spoiler:

Does a Spiked Gauntlet count as a Gauntlet for the purposes of Fist of the Avenger?


Deadmanwalking wrote:
FedoraFerret wrote:
Okay I stand corrected, I can have better than that at level one just by being a skinwalker.

Sure, but those can stack. A Ragebred Wild Soul can have 5 natural attacks at level 2. Then 6 at level 6.

Alchemists can already pull that trick, but it remains a very nice trick. Especially on a Full BAB Class (which, remember, Vigilante can be).

I mean not very optimal I'll give them, but solid enough for the game I'd likely play it in(only have a full BAB's 4th attack for a level if at all). If you don't got full BAB, you instead can get sneak attack on them IIRC.

In conjunction with the specializations I'd say it's fine, if maybe a little under powered. But still Bearman will be a thing at some point. Maybe even go rage bred (add to those hooves) for Manbearpig.


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Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Eric Hinkle wrote:
I've read that there are new charm spells in the book, which sounds good for Infernal bloodline sorcerers. Just what are these spells?

The only ones I could find were Mass Charm Person and Matchmaker.


Are there any new weapons?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Milo v3 wrote:
Are there any new weapons?

Yes, a wrist launcher that shoots poisoned darts no damage hard to notice and a heaver one that shoot crossbow bolt like a hand crossbow.

Also a Spring Blade that is a switch knife.


Still hoping I can make an investigator that opens combat by using wrist dart launchers to dose the party beatstick with potions and/or infusions.


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Azouth wrote:
Milo v3 wrote:
Are there any new weapons?

Yes, a wrist launcher that shoots poisoned darts no damage hard to notice and a heaver one that shoot crossbow bolt like a hand crossbow.

Also a Spring Blade that is a switch knife.

FEEL THE STING OF THE MIGHTY MONARCH


Barachiel Shina wrote:

An interesting note, the spell Undetectable Trap is perfect for those pesky "I use Detect Magic and automatically find all magic traps" situation.

Undetectable Trap is only for Antipaladin, Occultist, and Ranger. I would have given this to Cleric and Sor/Wiz as well. Strange design choice.

Is there a reason Paizo needs to put Magic Aura out of business?

EDIT: So would this new spell be permanent, unlike Magic Aura?
Does it just defeat Detect Magic?, or also Rogue Trapfinding/etc vs. Magic Traps?


Barachiel Shina wrote:

An interesting note, the spell Undetectable Trap is perfect for those pesky "I use Detect Magic and automatically find all magic traps" situation.

The problem is, just like the Mask Dweomer spell, is limited in who can cast it. (Mask Dweomer is Witch only...why it didn't go to Sor/Wiz and/or Bard is beyond me).

Undetectable Trap is only for Antipaladin, Occultist, and Ranger. I would have given this to Cleric and Sor/Wiz as well. Strange design choice.

Thanks, Barachiel. And, yes, strange choice for that Undetectable Trap spell. Oh, well, it isn't as if a GM can't pretend that the trap builder didn't have a high level Ranger friend.


magnuskn wrote:
Barachiel Shina wrote:

An interesting note, the spell Undetectable Trap is perfect for those pesky "I use Detect Magic and automatically find all magic traps" situation.

The problem is, just like the Mask Dweomer spell, is limited in who can cast it. (Mask Dweomer is Witch only...why it didn't go to Sor/Wiz and/or Bard is beyond me).

Undetectable Trap is only for Antipaladin, Occultist, and Ranger. I would have given this to Cleric and Sor/Wiz as well. Strange design choice.

Thanks, Barachiel. And, yes, strange choice for that Undetectable Trap spell. Oh, well, it isn't as if a GM can't pretend that the trap builder didn't have a high level Ranger friend.

Or a decent UMD score. It's how a lot of PCs will be getting access to it, I imagine.


Barachiel Shina wrote:

Further inspection of the book, I do see something that may make it more solid that Mind Blank works against True Seeing.

There is a spell in this book called Unerring Tracker, where once you identified a trail left by a creature, you can cast this spell to follow the trail automatically at any speed that you can as long as you keep the trail within line of sight.

The spell is a Divination spell and has a range of Personal, just like True Seeing, and the spell specifically mentions that it bypasses that target's Nondetection spell if it has it on, but not its Mind Blank.

I can see it now... You are following the trail of 4 wounded terrorists, led by the Evil Archmage, they are wounded enough to all leave a trail of blood... Around a bend, the trails split up: WHICH ONE IS THE ARCHMAGE? Oh! if you start going North all of a sudden you are forced to slow down to follow the trail, as if Unerring Tracker is no longer working. That must be the Arch Mage's trail! :-)

Kind of a weird example, why Nondetection would interfere with more easily following the trail of blood/ muddy tracks you left in the road/ etc...

Shadow Lodge

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Salafax wrote:
doc the grey wrote:
At 2nd you get 2 claw attacks for a d4 at medium, at 6th you get a d4 bite, at 12th you get +1 nat armor that increases to +3 at max by 20th, finally you get to be a bear at 18th. It's just a grizzly bear, has only d6's, and is the only form you can take.
Doc -- In your opinion, how does this stack up against the Arachnid Wildsoul? Does the arachnid still need a weapon or does he get some sort of special attack? I'm trying to figure out his combat options while I wait for the PDF. Thanks again!

No you don't get any real damage based attacks from the line but you can still pick from a wide variety since you keep all of your preexisting proficiencies. That said I think if you are planning to lean on the arachnid build you are looking to get into a more control based build, using your webs to lock down targets for you or your allies to pummel quickly. Personally I'd want to take some sort of melee weapon with me, lock the enemy down, and then harass until they get free or combo with someone else on my team. Like I would love to see someone web up somebody then have the wizard create pit or something and completely remove the threat for a while. Lot of potential to set up picks and combos with your friends.

Shadow Lodge

Deadmanwalking wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
You don't lose your specialization.

Thanks for the info Mark! :)

And yeah, in that case, that sounds reasonable given what I know of how good Vigilante Talents are. Each of those (the claws, bite, and then natural armor) is a bit better than a Feat.

He is correct that it doesn't replace the specialization just alters them, an odd choice of words since it doesn't change anything that is referenced in your specialization selection, only how Disguise saves are handled when powers granted by your, "natural course" are used. As for a build Not really. To start you are gaining damage on par with that of a dagger or a small unarmed strike as a medium character but cannot have iterative attacks (natural attacks don't get those), no spell casting to buff them, potentially no fast bab to increase the hit, and really no vigilante talent to improve them. Of the avenger vigilante talents that do exist (Combat Skill, Fist of the Avenger, Heavy Training, Mad Rush, Nothing Can Stop Me, Signature Weapon, Sucker Punch) the only ones that have any real capacity to help with your damage output are Combat Skill, Mad Rush, Signature Weapon, and Sucker Punch. The first just gives you a combat feat which isn't really that special, Mad rush lets you pounce at a steep AC penalty but doesn't grant you any sort of dmg boost, Signature weapon just gets you weapon focus and Weapon specialization at 8th which will still only help 2/3rds of your attacks at best since claw & bite are separate choices and would therefore need a feat tree each, and Sucker Punch only works on nonlethal attacks that the target is unaware of so you would have to take a -4 to hit this unaware target to benefit.

As for stalker of his options (Blind Spot, Evasive, *Foe Collision, Hide in Plain Sight, *Leave an Opening, *Mighty Ambush, Rogue Talent, Sniper, Stalker Sense, *Throat Jab, Twisting Fear, and Up Close and Personal) none of them really offer you any extra benefit for using them with your claws or bite over just say a dagger which has the same amount of damage, can be thrown, and a better crit range.

At the end of the day you are basically trading away 4 of those awesome vigilante talents for a bunch of attacks weaker than a dagger and some nat armor that you could get by playing a vanilla skinwalker with 1 feat out of the box(Extra feature gets you the nat armor you waited till 12th for and the claws at the same time), playing a bear blooded skinwalker and get it all of the abilities save the nat armor with 3 feats (above plus Animal Shape and Animal Hide out of Wayfinder 13. The former is just a modification of the Bat Shape feat batkin already have and the latter just gives you +1 nat armor) or 2 and an amulet by 3rd, or by just playing a half-orc, getting the teeth race replace trait, and just 2 weapon fighting with daggers and still being a vigilante. All of those I can do at 1st and have acquired ALL of the talents this one is selling me and still do other stuff and in the case of the last one I actually get iterative attacks. After that the only real thing you're gaining is the bear shape which you can't get till 18th and even ignoring the fact that you are just a grizzly bear as per beast shape 2 a 4th level spell your sorc has been able to do for 10 levels and your Alchemist has been able to do for 8 it's an ability I can get from an item for 3,300 gp probably as early as 5th. In short, it's bad, you've got better ways to get this, you've got way better ways to get these buff playing other vigilante builds than this.

Shadow Lodge

technarken wrote:
On a slightly tactical note...Featherweight Darts:Can I use them to deliver potions/infusions to allies, or can they be only used for poisons?

I think the answer is... Yes? Assuming you meet all the other restrictions for those abilities. A potion itself has been shown to be injectable more than a few times before (needle gun thing out of Tech Guide I'm looking at you and injector spear) and the biggest barrier for infusions is whether or not you have the infusion talent so I'd say yes. Ohh now I want to see someone build a rogue healer who loads his wrist launchers with poisons and cure potions.


Pathfinder Companion, LO Special Edition, PF Special Edition, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Am I reading it wrong, or does studied spell allow someone to make a moderately difficult knowledge check to completely remove any bonus on saves, energy resistance, and DR not from a class level, item, or spell?

Studied Spell (Metamagic):
You use your knowledge about the target to bypass its resistances and damage reduction.
Benefit: When casting a studied spell, designate one
target affected by the spell. Attempt an appropriate
Knowledge check based on that target’s creature type as
you cast the spell. The DC for this check is equal to 20 + the
creature’s CR based on its race and not including any class
levels or template (a creature that is defined by class levels
has an effective CR of 0 for this ability). If you succeed,
your studied spell ignores any energy resistance or damage
reduction the target has because of its race as well as any
bonuses on saving throws against the spell granted by the
target’s race (such as the bonus from a dwarf ’s hardy ability
or a half ling’s half ling luck ability). Your studied spell
doesn’t ignore energy resistance, damage reduction, or
saving throw bonuses granted by other spells and effects. If
you fail the Knowledge check, the spell still has its normal
effects. A studied spell uses up a spell slot 2 levels higher
than the spell’s actual level.


magnuskn wrote:
Gisher wrote:
magnuskn wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:
magnuskn wrote:
Yes, that is also my fear. Slashing Grace was vastly overnerfed. They should have just denied the DEX-to-damage bonus to the off-hand and bucklers should have been allowed, since they are (literally, in the case of Jirelle) iconic to the Swashbuckler class.
Huh? The current version of Slashing Grace allows bucklers. Bucklers don't occupy a hand.
I was pretty sure that someone of the devs had said that bucklers also count as something which "occupies the hand". If that isn't the case and I am wrong, half my objections are gone and I abjectly apologize for my wrongness. No, seriously.

This FAQ should reassure you on the buckler issue.

FAQ wrote:
Slashing Grace does not allow most shields, but bucklers work because they don’t occupy the hand. ...
Excellent, then I apologize for that part. I still think the FAQ should be amended to allow for weapons in the off-hand, only that they don't receive the DEX-to-damage benefit.

My issue in Paizo overnerfing Dex to Damage, is that in order to have it, you must invest in feats, by forbidding TWF application of Dex on Damage, you apply a double pain, not only you have to pay for replacing STR by Dex, but even you do not have the same benefit (half Dext for off Hand) this penalized clearly melee characters like Fighters or Swashbucklers...


FractalLaw wrote:

Am I reading it wrong, or does studied spell allow someone to make a moderately difficult knowledge check to completely remove any bonus on saves, energy resistance, and DR not from a class level, item, or spell?

** spoiler omitted **

Looks that way to me! Pretty sweet, right?! Now how about a metamagic rod of this...


Azouth wrote:
Milo v3 wrote:
Are there any new weapons?

Yes, a wrist launcher that shoots poisoned darts no damage hard to notice and a heaver one that shoot crossbow bolt like a hand crossbow.

Also a Spring Blade that is a switch knife.

Ooo the heavier version of wrist launcher sounds like I'd finally have a wrist-mounted grappling gun. I hope there's nothing in the description saying it isn't strong enough to support grapple bolts and rope or something like that.

What's the reload time/action for wrist launchers? Does it count as a crossbow for Rapid Reload?

Is the Spring Blade any different from the switchblade knife from Adventurer's Armory?


Fourshadow wrote:
FractalLaw wrote:

Am I reading it wrong, or does studied spell allow someone to make a moderately difficult knowledge check to completely remove any bonus on saves, energy resistance, and DR not from a class level, item, or spell?

** spoiler omitted **

Looks that way to me! Pretty sweet, right?! Now how about a metamagic rod of this...

I agree that's what it does, but I don't think it's much better than "ok." For a +2 level you're at best adding 30 points of damage if you can make the knowledge check. That's slightly worse than an empowered 20d6 blast. For 20 points of resistance you're at the equivalent of empowering a 12d6 blast, and at 10 points and below it's definitely not worth it. You generally just want to learn empower. It does beat empower if you're expecting the target to make the save or you're throwing weak 10d6 capped spells at things with 30 points of resistance, but if you're expecting it to make the save or otherwise planning to do weak damage maybe cast something else.

Now if it got past immunity...

Shadow Lodge

Protoman wrote:
Azouth wrote:
Milo v3 wrote:
Are there any new weapons?

Yes, a wrist launcher that shoots poisoned darts no damage hard to notice and a heaver one that shoot crossbow bolt like a hand crossbow.

Also a Spring Blade that is a switch knife.

Ooo the crossbow version of wrist launcher sounds like I'd finally have a wrist-mounted grappling gun. I hope there's nothing in the description saying it isn't strong enough to support grapple bolts or something like that.

What's the reload time/action for wrist launchers? Does it count as a crossbow for Rapid Reload?

Is the Spring Blade any different from the switchblade knife from Adventurer's Armory?

The one that uses crossbow bolts (the Heavy) doesn't have any stipulations on what bolts can't be used so I'd say you can grapple hook bolt to your heart's content. It costs a full round action to reload them but you can make a sleight of hand check every time you shoot it to conceal that it was you. It doesn't list any way to give it rapid reload but it does treat as a hand crossbow for proficiency. Unfortunately a vigilante doesn't start with proficiency with either sets of weapons T_T.

As for the blade... yup. It has a +4 to conceal with Sleight of Hand, DC 20 Perception check to realize what it is if the blade is folded, and it's a move action to fold the blade back in. Also it's a simple weapon with an x2 crit but I'm thinking the latter is a typo and will hopefully be changed soon.


doc the grey wrote:

The one that uses crossbow bolts (the Heavy) doesn't have any stipulations on what bolts can't be used so I'd say you can grapple hook bolt to your heart's content. It costs a full round action to reload them but you can make a sleight of hand check every time you shoot it to conceal that it was you. It doesn't list any way to give it rapid reload but it does treat as a hand crossbow for proficiency.

As for the blade... yup. It has a +4 to conceal with Sleight of Hand, DC 20 Perception check to realize what it is if the blade is folded, and it's a move action to fold the blade back in. Also it's a simple weapon with an x2 crit but I'm thinking the latter is a typo and will hopefully be changed soon.

Thanks!

Well if it counts as a hand crossbow for proficiency, I'll assume it'll be fine with rapid reload then. My dreams of playing a Mega/Protoman inspired character are even closer! Bolt ace and ideally wyrwood race would be pretty sweet.


Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I'd note that feral combat training allows fist of the avenger to work with an ursine wildsoul vigilante, but yeah, probably not my favorite option for wildsoul.

UInrelatedly, kinda wish renown offered the option to provide a Diplomacy bonus instead of Intimidate in vigilante mode for more benevolent vigilantes...


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Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, LO Special Edition, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition Subscriber; Starfinder Superscriber
djones wrote:
FEEL THE STING OF THE MIGHTY MONARCH BUTTERFLY

FYP. :-)


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Ed Reppert wrote:
djones wrote:
FEEL THE STING OF THE MIGHTY MONARCH BUTTERFLY
FYP. :-)

You see, just like the flawless monarch butterfly from which I take my name, the Monarch has many ways to sting.

Shadow Lodge

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Protoman wrote:
doc the grey wrote:

The one that uses crossbow bolts (the Heavy) doesn't have any stipulations on what bolts can't be used so I'd say you can grapple hook bolt to your heart's content. It costs a full round action to reload them but you can make a sleight of hand check every time you shoot it to conceal that it was you. It doesn't list any way to give it rapid reload but it does treat as a hand crossbow for proficiency.

As for the blade... yup. It has a +4 to conceal with Sleight of Hand, DC 20 Perception check to realize what it is if the blade is folded, and it's a move action to fold the blade back in. Also it's a simple weapon with an x2 crit but I'm thinking the latter is a typo and will hopefully be changed soon.

Thanks!

Well if it counts as a hand crossbow for proficiency, I'll assume it'll be fine with rapid reload then. My dreams of playing a Mega/Protoman inspired character are even closer! Bolt ace and ideally wyrwood race would be pretty sweet.

Not sure what pfs will say but I could see a home GM going for it. That said you could also go android kineticist. Nothing says buster shot like a force blast to the face! Also you could go with every time you pick up a new element being you absorbing the powers of a previous boss. Also there is a wood specialty to get you that leafman defense...

Wow, that works a lot better than I thought...


Totally does!

Sovereign Court

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Having read through the book, I have to say the Brute Vigilante is my biggest disappointment. I understand the idea of mimicking the whole "Hulk is uncontrollable" thing, but the PvP aspect and the difficulty of preventing it means it will probably never be viable as any kind of PC option, which is honestly worse to me than not fitting the trope completely.


Lukas Stariha wrote:
Having read through the book, I have to say the Brute Vigilante is my biggest disappointment. I understand the idea of mimicking the whole "Hulk is uncontrollable" thing, but the PvP aspect and the difficulty of preventing it means it will probably never be viable as any kind of PC option, which is honestly worse to me than not fitting the trope completely.

I think people would have complained more about it not fitting than the PvP aspect.

Sovereign Court

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Fourshadow wrote:
Lukas Stariha wrote:
Having read through the book, I have to say the Brute Vigilante is my biggest disappointment. I understand the idea of mimicking the whole "Hulk is uncontrollable" thing, but the PvP aspect and the difficulty of preventing it means it will probably never be viable as any kind of PC option, which is honestly worse to me than not fitting the trope completely.

I think people would have complained more about it not fitting than the PvP aspect.

I guess I just won't ever understand that complaint, because I can't see many, if any, players being able to use it as is. It is impossible to avoid this PvP mechanic, unlike other archetypes such as Cult Leader or Toxicant.


Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

It will definitely be banned in PFS, since they routinely ban anything that might lead to PVP. That Will save is going to be tough since the save DC advances faster than the save bonus does. At least your Con mod isn't added to the save DC as is the case with the Wild Rager Barbarian archetype.

Sovereign Court

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David knott 242 wrote:
It will definitely be banned in PFS, since they routinely ban anything that might lead to PVP. That Will save is going to be tough since the save DC advances faster than the save bonus does.

I don't foresee many GMs or player groups allowing it in home games either, it's way too detrimental in both the time it takes to resolve and the danger it poses to the party. I'm not a great fan of hamstringing a class option to being nearly unusable just to please people who want to "accidentally" murder their party.

Spoiler:

It's not even as if the archetype needs it as a balancing option. It has enough restrictions on how it can enter and leave its vigilante identity, as well as the fact their social identity doesn't get to benefit from several features.


So I am curious about three things as I been plotting on making a trickster-based character for a campaign. However I don't have the book yet.

My curiosity is first towards the feats Unimpeachable Honor and True Deception. Secondly, the bard archetypes in this book and if any of them would make for a worthwhile "trickster". Finally I was wondering if there was any spells in this book like Fool's Gold or Tears to Wine from the arcane anthology player companion book.


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Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

True Deception enables very high level characters to fool divination magic used to penetrate their disguises, in much the same manner as the immunity of the Vigilante to divination magic used to gain information about the identity that he is not currently using.

Unimpeachable Honor gives a +4 bonus to saves against effects that would magically compel one to violate one's religion and alignment and a -4 penalty to attacks and damage rolls against allies.

The Wit archetype is a bit of a trickster.

I would not know where to start with the spells in this book. There are a lot of them, and many if not most of them can be used in tricky ways.


David knott 242 wrote:

True Deception enables very high level characters to fool divination magic used to penetrate their disguises, in much the same manner as the immunity of the Vigilante to divination magic used to gain information about the identity that he is not currently using.

Unimpeachable Honor gives a +4 bonus to saves against effects that would magically compel one to violate one's religion and alignment and a -4 penalty to attacks and damage rolls against allies.

The Wit archetype is a bit of a trickster.

I would not know where to start with the spells in this book. There are a lot of them, and many if not most of them can be used in tricky ways.

Thank you very much for the information :)


For those of you able to parse the rules better than I.

If I have two-weapon fighting and rapid shot with my Mystic Bolts am I able to:

a) Take two melee attacks

b) Take two melee attacks and fire a Mystic Bolt at range (subject to penalties)

c)Fire at range two times.

d) Fire at range three times.

I think that d worked in playtest but I'm not really sure.

I would be thankful of clarity : )


Quandary wrote:
Barachiel Shina wrote:

An interesting note, the spell Undetectable Trap is perfect for those pesky "I use Detect Magic and automatically find all magic traps" situation.

Undetectable Trap is only for Antipaladin, Occultist, and Ranger. I would have given this to Cleric and Sor/Wiz as well. Strange design choice.

Is there a reason Paizo needs to put Magic Aura out of business?

EDIT: So would this new spell be permanent, unlike Magic Aura?
Does it just defeat Detect Magic?, or also Rogue Trapfinding/etc vs. Magic Traps?

Magic Aura doesn't specify if it can be put on magic traps, I believe that's just people ruling that for the time being. This spell specifically says it works on traps.

It's an illusion spell for Antipaladin 2, Occultist 3, Ranger 2 spell. Casting time is quite long (10 min) and range of touch, target is the Trap touched and it lasts 1 day/level.

Detect Magic doesn't find any aura and Find Traps doesn't automatically locate it and it negates the Perception bonus granted by the spell. To those without Trapfinding, the spell increases the search DC of the trap by 1/2 caster level. It then goes on to mention the spell can be used in conjunction of creating Ranger Traps.


Quandary wrote:


Kind of a weird example, why Nondetection would interfere with more easily following the trail of blood/ muddy tracks you left in the road/ etc...

No, it says Nondetection doesn't protect you from Unerring Tracker...but Mind Blank does. Which leads to the same conclusion you had anyway, but my point was we have a spell with similar mechanics as True Seeing and the spell specifically mentions Mind Blank blocks it. Which would imply it should also work against True Seeing by comparison.

Designer

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Did this whole true seeing vs. mind blank thing get labeled as "No Response Required" some time in the past? It's not on the FAQ queue at all, and I wasn't aware it was considered in question. For what it's worth, as you predict with unerring tracker, we were operating under the assumption that mind blank's sweeping divination protections do cover spells like true seeing, though that's not an official FAQ. Please make a FAQ thread if you'd prefer something more official, though (or direct me to an older thread that was marked no response required, if there is one).

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Mark Seifter wrote:
Did this whole true seeing vs. mind blank thing get labeled as "No Response Required" some time in the past? It's not on the FAQ queue at all, and I wasn't aware it was considered in question. For what it's worth, as you predict with unerring tracker, we were operating under the assumption that mind blank's sweeping divination protections do cover spells like true seeing, though that's not an official FAQ. Please make a FAQ thread if you'd prefer something more official, though (or direct me to an older thread that was marked no response required, if there is one).

Not that I have any particular investment in the true seeing interaction, but I just wanted to say how happy I am that someone took on the FAQ-wrangler job and has been running with it. Thank you!


Barachiel Shina wrote:

An interesting note, the spell Undetectable Trap is perfect for those pesky "I use Detect Magic and automatically find all magic traps" situation.

The problem is, just like the Mask Dweomer spell, is limited in who can cast it. (Mask Dweomer is Witch only...why it didn't go to Sor/Wiz and/or Bard is beyond me).

Undetectable Trap is only for Antipaladin, Occultist, and Ranger. I would have given this to Cleric and Sor/Wiz as well. Strange design choice.

Yeah, the last thing the Cleric and Sorc/Wiz list needs is more utility counter spells. We need more spells that are specific to 6th and 4th level casters, not less. It makes plenty of sense for the Ranger and Occultist to have this, though I don't really understand why it's an Antipaladin thing.


Mark Seifter wrote:
Did this whole true seeing vs. mind blank thing get labeled as "No Response Required" some time in the past? It's not on the FAQ queue at all, and I wasn't aware it was considered in question. For what it's worth, as you predict with unerring tracker, we were operating under the assumption that mind blank's sweeping divination protections do cover spells like true seeing, though that's not an official FAQ. Please make a FAQ thread if you'd prefer something more official, though (or direct me to an older thread that was marked no response required, if there is one).

I just took a cursory look via the search engine and while the question has come up a few times, apparently nobody thought it necessary to FAQ it. Seems everybody thought it obvious enough.

I had remembered it being a bit different and the question just came up during conversation last week with my current GM, so I guess I just had the impression that a lot of people were unsure.

Silver Crusade

Arachnofiend wrote:
Barachiel Shina wrote:

An interesting note, the spell Undetectable Trap is perfect for those pesky "I use Detect Magic and automatically find all magic traps" situation.

The problem is, just like the Mask Dweomer spell, is limited in who can cast it. (Mask Dweomer is Witch only...why it didn't go to Sor/Wiz and/or Bard is beyond me).

Undetectable Trap is only for Antipaladin, Occultist, and Ranger. I would have given this to Cleric and Sor/Wiz as well. Strange design choice.

Yeah, the last thing the Cleric and Sorc/Wiz list needs is more utility counter spells. We need more spells that are specific to 6th and 4th level casters, not less. It makes plenty of sense for the Ranger and Occultist to have this, though I don't really understand why it's an Antipaladin thing.

Because Antipaladins are more likely to use traps than Paladins.

Designer

Terminalmancer wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
Did this whole true seeing vs. mind blank thing get labeled as "No Response Required" some time in the past? It's not on the FAQ queue at all, and I wasn't aware it was considered in question. For what it's worth, as you predict with unerring tracker, we were operating under the assumption that mind blank's sweeping divination protections do cover spells like true seeing, though that's not an official FAQ. Please make a FAQ thread if you'd prefer something more official, though (or direct me to an older thread that was marked no response required, if there is one).
Not that I have any particular investment in the true seeing interaction, but I just wanted to say how happy I am that someone took on the FAQ-wrangler job and has been running with it. Thank you!

You're welcome :) Every few months, I also try to read way farther down than is even humanly useful (to FAQs that only like 18 or fewer people noted) just to know what's on people's minds for my own edification, which is why the question caught me off guard.

Designer

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Arachnofiend wrote:
Barachiel Shina wrote:

An interesting note, the spell Undetectable Trap is perfect for those pesky "I use Detect Magic and automatically find all magic traps" situation.

The problem is, just like the Mask Dweomer spell, is limited in who can cast it. (Mask Dweomer is Witch only...why it didn't go to Sor/Wiz and/or Bard is beyond me).

Undetectable Trap is only for Antipaladin, Occultist, and Ranger. I would have given this to Cleric and Sor/Wiz as well. Strange design choice.

Yeah, the last thing the Cleric and Sorc/Wiz list needs is more utility counter spells. We need more spells that are specific to 6th and 4th level casters, not less. It makes plenty of sense for the Ranger and Occultist to have this, though I don't really understand why it's an Antipaladin thing.

In almost every case, a new spell, particularly a utility counter, "could" be on either the cleric or wizard spell list (particularly the wizard list if it isn't explicitly divine) because those two classes are generic enough spellcasters. However, I'm in agreement with you that sometimes, they shouldn't be. Having some number of spells found on only the more thematic lists for those spells makes those classes feel special and promotes teamwork (and potentially looking for NPC help), rather than just "the wizard handles everything". Cool things that work well with martial classes like the antipaladin and ranger make me happy. :)

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