Beta Prestige Classes are now Available!


Announcements

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Paizo Employee Director of Game Design

Hey there all,

The Pathfinder Beta Playtest edition of the Prestige Class rules are now available. They can be found here as a 1.4 MB zip PDF. Please note that the playtest period for this document is not until November 24th. As such, if you need any questions or clarifications, please post them to this thread. However, please save your playtest comments and feedback until the appropriate forum is open.

Enjoy!

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer
Paizo Publishing


Exciting!

Dark Archive

Hurray!

Liberty's Edge

Thanks Jason!

Sovereign Court Wayfinder, PaizoCon Founder

Sweet, Jason! Going to start reading right.....now.


DROOOOOOL!

Scarab Sages

thank you Jason.

Liberty's Edge

Excellent (rubs hands together) Printing has already commenced!
Thanx you very much!


Woohoo~! Downloading at the speed of light.


Thank you! Downloaded and reading.... :)

Sovereign Court

Assassin spells the same as in the DMG, then?


Nice nice nice nice nice! Kind of sad to see the dwarven defender gone, as well as the archmage (makes Big K in RotRL a bit tough to update...), but I can deal with it :D Woooooo Dragon Disciple!

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Bagpuss wrote:
Assassin spells the same as in the DMG, then?

Nope. Assassins don't have spells in this incarnation. The reference to spells at 1st level should have been cut entirely.

Sovereign Court

Golarion Goblin wrote:
Nice nice nice nice nice! Kind of sad to see the dwarven defender gone, as well as the archmage (makes Big K in RotRL a bit tough to update...), but I can deal with it :D Woooooo Dragon Disciple!

Yeah, it seems to me that Archmage (as well as Hierophant, to a lesser extent) did turn up enough in previous material that it might be cool to have a version of them. Still, maybe they'll update some more PrCs before the release.

Sovereign Court

James Jacobs wrote:
Nope. Assassins don't have spells in this incarnation. The reference to spells at 1st level should have been cut entirely.

Aha, that was the other possibility...

Liberty's Edge

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

When does the assassin get its sneak attack progression? The chart and text seem to be in disagreement.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Golarion Goblin wrote:
Nice nice nice nice nice! Kind of sad to see the dwarven defender gone, as well as the archmage (makes Big K in RotRL a bit tough to update...), but I can deal with it :D Woooooo Dragon Disciple!

Actually... the reason the archmage and the hierophant are gone is because in the PF RPG, spellcasting classes get high-level powers and abilities, unlike the 3.5 version which is only spells, really. The hope is that the role of "archmage" or "hierophant" will instead be handled simply by high level wizards or sorcerers or clerics or druids.

Big K would become a 20th-level transmuter in the PF RPG version, in other words.

And we'd get to use the words hierophant and archmage again without being limited to characters who have levels in those classes. Which is nice.


I take it that Pathfinder Chronicler is in because Red Wizard is out*? (The Red Wizard class sort of led people towards the Forgotten Realms Setting, and the Pathfinder Chronicler sort of does towards Golarion...? :D)
Nooooooo! Arcane Tricksters can now sneak attack with meteor swarm?!?
[tinfoil hat] Alright. How much did Merisiel bribe the Paizo staff? So Elves get to keep their Arcane Archer prestige class, but dwarves don't get to keep their Dwarven Defender? This is a case of blatant discrimination, motivated by bribes by those sneaky elves.... [/tinfoil hat]
Ooohh, love the Eldritch Knight levels stacking for the purposes of Fighter feats. Thumbs up to Jason for that; it was much overdue, I felt.

Edit:
* And also because the Pathfinder editor loves bards? ;)

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Correct on the Chronicler vs. Red Wizard account.

And elves > dwarves! Everyone knows this! :)

Less Snarky: What about removing the requirement that an arcane archer has to be an elf? Opening that class up to all races? Is that too weird?


Oh, and now we know why duelists love rapiers.

Liberty's Edge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber

what happened to the Blackguard? What are the plans for this class?

Paizo Employee Director of Game Design

Shisumo wrote:
When does the assassin get its sneak attack progression? The chart and text seem to be in disagreement.

Hmm... I will clear this up tomorrow when I am back in the office.

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer
Paizo Publishing


Charles Evans 25 wrote:


[tinfoil hat] Alright. How much did Merisiel bribe the Paizo staff? So Elves get to keep their Arcane Archer prestige class, but dwarves don't get to keep their Dwarven Defender? This is a case of blatant discrimination, motivated by bribes by those sneaky elves.... [/tinfoil hat]

Nuhu, it wasn't Merisiel who bribed them, it was Calistria.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Whew! Jason got home and is back on the internets! I can slink away and hide again!

Paizo Employee Director of Game Design

Mr Baron wrote:
what happened to the Blackguard? What are the plans for this class?

As I mentioned in another thread, the blackguard got cut due the fact that the class deserves to be a base class, not locked away as a prestige class. Unfortunately, I am not sure that we will have the room to explore this option in the core book.

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer
Paizo Publishing

Sovereign Court

Sad to see that precise strike doesn't work against undead (unlike sneak attack). It's not so strong (compared to sneak attack) that I'd have thought there would be a problem in allowing it to work across the board (and it's about time that criticals were allowed in the same way as sneak attack, if you ask me)(which you didn't).

Paizo Employee Director of Game Design

James Jacobs wrote:
Whew! Jason got home and is back on the internets! I can slink away and hide again!

Nope. Just on my phone.

Get back to work!

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer
Paizo Publishing


I like the artwork - even when it's only brown/white line drawings, the quality of the art is still self-evident.

I weep for the assassin's lost spells and the death of the blackguard as a prestige class. That will make converting a goodly number of my villains problematic, especially as the blackguards in question can ditch the Improved Sunder feat at last!

Liberty's Edge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber
Jason Bulmahn wrote:
Mr Baron wrote:
what happened to the Blackguard? What are the plans for this class?

As I mentioned in another thread, the blackguard got cut due the fact that the class deserves to be a base class, not locked away as a prestige class. Unfortunately, I am not sure that we will have the room to explore this option in the core book.

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer
Paizo Publishing

Jason,

Thanks for the reply. If it will not make the final cut, will it be available as a web enhancement or will it have to wait for another book?

Sovereign Court

Just popping in to say that Spell Critical is a really cool ability, and I'm surprised it's never come up before.

Good job on the prestige classes, I like them all, especially the changes to the Eldritch Knight and the Mystic Theurge.


James Jacobs wrote:

Correct on the Chronicler vs. Red Wizard account.

And elves > dwarves! Everyone knows this! :)

Less Snarky: What about removing the requirement that an arcane archer has to be an elf? Opening that class up to all races? Is that too weird?

Arcane Archer wrote:

Requirements

To qualify to become an arcane archer, a character must
fulfill all the following criteria.
Race: Elf or half-elf.
Base Attack Bonus: +6.
Feats: Point Blank Shot, Precise Shot, Weapon Focus
(longbow or shortbow).
Spells: Ability to cast 1st-level arcane spells.

I don't know as to the opening the Arcane Archer up to all races. I can see a case for the skills & techniqes having originally been developed by elves, but I'm not sure if a member of another race who's really focussed shouldn't be able to pick them up with more effort.

How about replacing the outright racial requirement with an 'either/or', along the lines of: 'Character must either have Keen Senses, or at least 10 ranks in Perception'- the premise being that elven keen senses (or half elven ones) allow the effortless blend of archery and magic, but anyone else who is really focused on their perceptions of the world around them can make it too?

Edit:
Checked the Beta, and of course gnomes, halflings, and dwarves have keen senses too, these days.
Umm, Keen senses (sight and sound) bonus as the requirement? :-?
Further Edit:
My position seems to be looking more hopeless to me by the minute; I will retreat to a position of suggestiong an EITHER race Elf/half-elf (simpler than what I was trying to do) or 10 ranks in perception (or whatever the editor feels is most appropriate) requirement.

Liberty's Edge

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

If I were playing a sorcerer with the draconic bloodline already, a 1 level dip in dragon disciple would look awfully tempting.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32, 2011 Top 16

Count me as another who's loving the prestige classes, but missing the Dwarven Defender. I'd be fine with arcane archer losing the elven tie in, as well as the Dwarven Defender losing the dwarven requiremen (though this would require re-naming the PrC.)

I think there is definately room for a more defensive focused martial PrC, especially if it gained some abilities to more actively guard adjacent allies and cause enemies to fight it/provoke attacks by ignoring it, etc.

Also, I like what was done with the good saving throw progression to deter prestige classes from being a saving throw bump. Is this a sign of multiclassing rules in regards to saving throws in general perhaps?


Well, it kind of feels like holding back an avalanche at this point, but no, I really don't want Arcane Archers to be opened to any race, and I do like Dwarven Defenders, and would like for them to remain dwarven.

Of course, it would be nice for all of the assassin spells in 3.5 supplements not to be invalidated content, and for Eldritch Knights to not be really close to getting most of what fighters get and a nearly full spellcasting progression as well.

I know, push the boundaries first, then wait for things to get reigned back in. Just not seeing a lot of reigning going on.


KnightErrantJR wrote:
Well, it kind of feels like holding back an avalanche at this point, but no, I really don't want Arcane Archers to be opened to any race, and I do like Dwarven Defenders, and would like for them to remain dwarven.

Just so you don't feel lonely standing under the avalanche: I'm with you on the Arcane Archer and the Dwarven Defender. On the former, I'm not too worried, since it still has the requirement in Beta.


KnightErrantJR wrote:

Well, it kind of feels like holding back an avalanche at this point, but no, I really don't want Arcane Archers to be opened to any race, and I do like Dwarven Defenders, and would like for them to remain dwarven.

Of course, it would be nice for all of the assassin spells in 3.5 supplements not to be invalidated content, and for Eldritch Knights to not be really close to getting most of what fighters get and a nearly full spellcasting progression as well.

I know, push the boundaries first, then wait for things to get reigned back in. Just not seeing a lot of reigning going on.

The problem with Arcane Archer just for Elves, and Dwarven Defender just for dwarves (and I get the impression that Dwarven Defender was originally intended to be a 'Lawful' barbarian variant for dwarves) is it leads to temptation for Splat proliferation. The Elves get 'Arcane Archer', then some other company (OGL) brings out a human variant, then someone else brings out a dwarf version for use with crossbows, and someone else brings out the halfling sling version....

In 3.5 Forgotten Realms I saw something like that happen by country several times. Aglarondan PCs got a griffon rider prestige class, and then the dwarves of the Great Rift got a hippogriff rider class, and I was feeling mildly ticked off buying all these books and half the content (as far as prestige classes went) being regurgitated variations of things done in previous ones.
Maybe what's needed is ONE general 'archer/wizard' prestige class and if you're an elf, half elf, or spend time and effort training with elves, you can take it one way, and if you're a dwarf you can go another...

Shadow Lodge

Cool. Very cool.


I must say that I prefer the art in the web enhancement to the art in the Beta.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32, 2011 Top 16

KnightErrantJR wrote:
Well, it kind of feels like holding back an avalanche at this point, but no, I really don't want Arcane Archers to be opened to any race, and I do like Dwarven Defenders, and would like for them to remain dwarven.

I don't know if I'd say you're holding back an avalanche - while I said I'd be fine with it, I'd also be fine with keeping them race specific. To me it's more important to have a defender PrC though than to keep it Dwarven and to keep the Arcane Archer elven.

KnightErrantJR wrote:

Of course, it would be nice for all of the assassin spells in 3.5 supplements not to be invalidated content, and for Eldritch Knights to not be really close to getting most of what fighters get and a nearly full spellcasting progression as well.

I know, push the boundaries first, then wait for things to get reigned back in. Just not seeing a lot of reigning going on.

There aren't THAT many assassin spells out there that aren't on another spell list, and it should be pretty easy to assign them a Sor/Wiz spell level and keep them in use. Also, you can easily make a more magical assassin PrC that loses some of the other abilities and gains more spell abilities. Basically, this could lead to many different flavors of assassin PrC, similar to how the Pathfinder Red Mantis Assassin PrC is a variant type. I can see having a variety of Assassin type PrCes out there, to represent different guilds.

I do agree that Eldrich Knight seems a bit too good now. They do skip a few bonus feats, but with the quicker feat progression, there's still lots of feat selections they do get. They also lose out on the fight weapon and armor training progression. I'd rather see them skip the bonus feats entirely, and gain a few more special abilities that combine combat and spellcasting. Maybe an ability to quicken personal spells of up to a certain level a few times per day, so they can jump into combat and not spend the first round or two casting shield or other personal buff spells that enhance their combat abilities.


Notice that Good Saving Throw progressions have been changed. They now start with +1 instead of +2. I would actually recommend to apply this change to base classes too.

Thank you Paizo for making this change at least for prestige classes - I have been calling for something similar for a long time now, though the options I suggested were a bit more comprehensive and placed more emphasis for backward compatibility of at least the single-class characters (non-issue if the change only applies to Prestige Classes of course).


JoelF847 wrote:
I do agree that Eldritch Knight seems a bit too good now.

And Seltyiel looks like he wants to keep it that way.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

KnightErrantJR wrote:
I know, push the boundaries first, then wait for things to get reigned back in. Just not seeing a lot of reigning going on.

You won't see reigning happen at all, I suspect, until the Prestige Class portion of the Beta playtest comes up in a few weeks. For now... we're still in boundary pushing stage.


Charles Evans 25 wrote:

Maybe what's needed is ONE general 'archer/wizard' prestige class and if you're an elf, half elf, or spend time and effort training with elves, you can take it one way, and if you're a dwarf you can go another...

That class is still Eldritch Knight. Arcane Archer still provides no continuing spellcasting progression, so a wizard/archer still has no use for it.


With regard to the Eldritch Knight, I do not have any problems with it as it now stands; the requirement to be able to cast 3rd level arcane spells likely means five wizard (or six sorcerer) levels have to be taken to qualify, which means that to qualify a character has likely 'dropped' three points of base attack bonus behind where a straight fighter of equivalent level would be, and the requirement to be proficient in all martial weapons (having had to take a 'fighter' type level to likely gain that) combined with the 'no spell-casting advancement at 1st level in the prestige class' means that a character is two caster levels (and one whole spell level) behind where a straight wizard or sorcerer of equivalent level would be.
A bard with one level of fighter falls only two points of BAB behind a straight fighter in reaching the point (in spell-casting terms) where he/she can qualify for the Eldritch Knight class, but the bard has still fallen behind where he/she could be by two caster levels, and is unable to advance access to the more powerful levels of bardic music by gaining levels in the Eldritch Knight prestige class.
The adjustments which have been made simply bring the class upto speed, in my opinion, with the rest of the prestige classes.

Ermmm, 'straight' in this case referring to a character who has only taken one class in their career.


James Jacobs:
Do the new 'iconics' for the Prestige classes have names yet? Teh Eldritch Knight seems familiar, but I don't recall having seen the others before....


Kirth Gersen wrote:
Charles Evans 25 wrote:

Maybe what's needed is ONE general 'archer/wizard' prestige class and if you're an elf, half elf, or spend time and effort training with elves, you can take it one way, and if you're a dwarf you can go another...

That class is still Eldritch Knight. Arcane Archer still provides no continuing spellcasting progression, so a wizard/archer still has no use for it.

Hah. Good point. Perhaps I should have said: Maybe what's needed is ONE general prestige class for an 'archer who's dabbled in magic' and if you're an elf, half elf, or spend time and effort training with elves, you can take it one way, and if you're a dwarf you can go another...


Charles Evans 25 wrote:

James Jacobs:

Do the new 'iconics' for the Prestige classes have names yet? Teh Eldritch Knight seems familiar, but I don't recall having seen the others before....

Cant recall his name but he is the last Iconic

Paizo Employee Chief Creative Officer, Publisher

He is Seltyiel, and he'll break your heart.

The other characters do not have backgrounds or names (yet?).


What happened to the Thaumaturgist?
It has been used already in the adventure paths and would be very suitable for PCs and NPCs from Cheliax (I know the rules are meant to be world-generic, but if the Pathfinder Chronicler is in why not another PrC that's very Golarion appropriate?).

As for the Dwarven Defender I wouldn't mind seeing a free for all defensive PrC - call it Stalwart Defender or something like that.


One more thought which has occured to me, on the subject of Arcane Archer, before I turn in for the night.
What happens if you axe the racial requirement, but say that only elves or half-elves can just pick up any bow or arrows and use the prestige class abilities with them? Everyone else can only use the prestige class abilities with bows and arrows which they have made themselves (with craft checks) or with items which they have spent at least one tenday 'attuning' themselves?

Edit:
I.E. it takes a dedicated bow 'fanatic' of another race to match the effortless ease of an elf (or half elf).

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