Xuttah playtests the Sorcerer -Commentary


Playtest Reports

Liberty's Edge

Hi Folks!

This time, I playtested an air elemental bloodline sorcerer. All feats were PFRPG and the character started at 5th and is currently 7th level. I selected one or two non PF spells, but they don't really come into play and I'm probably going to sub some out as levels go up. This post is more feedback on the use of the character rather than a narrative of specific combats.

Relevant info:
Sorcerer 7, Air Elemental Bloodline (elemental ray 1d6+3, resist electricity 10, bonus feat empower spell, bonus spells burning hands, scorching ray, protection from elements), improved initiave, 25 point build (Epic Fantasy)
Spells To Comment On: Ray of Enfeeblement, Minor Image

Race Commentary:
This is the first time I've ever played a half-elf, and I admit it was so that I could playtest it. I liked the mid-ground between elf and human for abilities. The +2 CHA and Favoured Class option was a nice addition to the race and made it attractive enough to try it out. The Skill focus was a nice plus too; about on par with a racial bonus to skills. I did find it odd that both humans and elves have a weapon familiarity/proficiency listing and the half-elf does not. Maybe they should get one choice from the elf list.

Class Commentary:
I like the concept of sorcerer bloodlines! They create an interesting bit of flavour for what would otherwise be the wizard's gimpy brother.

The elemental bloodline has a solid list of bonus spells and the movement modes and resistances are great, but I wonder about how useful the bonus feats are and the number you get. Power attack, for instance, does not make much sense for a low BAB, usually low STR class. Point Blank Shot would be much more useful, as would Deadly Aim. I also think that the spacing and number of bonus feats are given out on could increase by 1 more in 20 levels and the interval could be altered to 4th, 9th, 14th, and 19th level (or some other regular spacing -it just feels tacked on to fill dead levels right now).

Question about elemental ray: Is it 1d6 plus one (point) per 2 levels, or 1d6 +1 (die) per two levels? The former feels too weak at higher levels and the latter too strong at low levels. What about 1d6 + 1d6/3 caster levels above 1st (2d6 @ 4th, 3d6 @ 7th, 4d6 @10th, 5d6 @13th, 6d6 @ 16th and 7d6 at 19th)? It should also have close range instead of a fixed one. Not a bit deal, but it would make sense to me.

Ray of Enfeeblement: I know I've been vocal about keeping ROE as written in the Beta, but I'm beginning to rethink that now. I've only tried the spell out once, and it didn't have a huge impact on the combat (creature died before it could really do anything), but I think the implications of it's use were pretty staggaring.

My character shot an Umber Hulk with ROE before it's initiative (he was 35' away at time of casting) and it resulted in a roll of 5 on a d6 plus 3 (half caster level) for a total of an 8 point STR penalty. -4 to hit and damage is a pretty punishing blow for a I level spell.

If I had empowered it as a full-round casting (does that happen just before my next turn or mean that I can only do that plus 5' shuffle?), it could have been between 10 and 12 poins of STR penalty (depending on how you interpret the Empower Spell feat -I think it's the former). That's about right for a III level spell, but the basic I level concerns me.

What if we just change the die that we roll or spread out the additional caster level based penalty? I suggest going with either 1d4 + half CL (max 5) OR 1d6 + 1/4 CL (max 5). I like the latter since it gives the spell increases right up to 20th level instead of plateauing at 10th.

Minor Image (an all other figments by extension): How do you define interacting with something in order to disbelieve it? Must you touch an illusion or only see it? How do mindless creatures (constructs, vermin, oozes) treat figments? What about extraordinary senses like blindsense or tremorsense?

That's it for my feedback and questions. Hope the information is useful.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Xuttah wrote:

Class Commentary:

I like the concept of sorcerer bloodlines! They create an interesting bit of flavour for what would otherwise be the wizard's gimpy brother.

The elemental bloodline has a solid list of bonus spells and the movement modes and resistances are great, but I wonder about how useful the bonus feats are and the number you get. Power attack, for instance, does not make much sense for a low BAB, usually low STR class. Point Blank Shot would be much more useful, as would Deadly Aim. I also think that the spacing and number of bonus feats are given out on could increase by 1 more in 20 levels and the interval could be altered to 4th, 9th, 14th, and 19th level (or some other regular spacing -it just feels tacked on to fill dead levels right now).

I agree that waiting for 7th level to get your first bonus feat is a little painful - pretty much all of levels 2-5 (except 4th) are frustrating as a sorcerer, because the bennies you get are weak relative to the wizard (or, at least, so it seems to me). The shift from the Alpha to the Beta that took away the 1st level bonus feat, replacing it with Eschew Materials, felt punishing - Eschew Materials is hardly ever worth a feat slot, and most of the options in the bonus feat list would be ones I would be much more excited about.

I will say, though, that Point Blank Shot, as the class stands, would be pretty useless - if I don't have PBS and Precise Shot by 7th level, I doubt I'm going to bother with them then.

Xuttah wrote:
Question about elemental ray: Is it 1d6 plus one (point) per 2 levels, or 1d6 +1 (die) per two levels? The former feels too weak at higher levels and the latter too strong at low levels. What about 1d6 + 1d6/3 caster levels above 1st (2d6 @ 4th, 3d6 @ 7th, 4d6 @10th, 5d6 @13th, 6d6 @ 16th and 7d6 at 19th)? It should also have close range instead of a fixed one. Not a bit deal, but it would make sense to me.

It's the former, and the weakness at high levels is deliberate. The bloodline powers are intended to give you something to do at low levels once your spells run out, but at mid and high levels that's rarely an issue. The idea is not to turn the sorcerer (or the wizard, cleric or druid who might have similar abilities) into a warlock on top of their spellcasting; it's just to give them something to do after their one casting each of sleep and color spray are gone.


you are very smart
skiping level 1 trough 4 gave you a big big brake

I recomand any players ho really want to play a sorcerer to start at level 5

no offence to anyone but this class needs a make over
The bloodlines are cool but they feel half done
the feats dont start at the rigth place
the bonus spells fall behind
the abilities dont match the BAB and they dont improve trough levels

i give a 3\10 to this class (levels 1 trough 4)anyways

Liberty's Edge

bden wrote:

you are very smart

skiping level 1 trough 4 gave you a big big brake

I didn't choose to start at level 5; that's where the rest of the group was when I joined in. I'm perfectly comfortable with the power level at 1st, although the number of skill rankss is sadly low. Thankfully, it's been fertile ground for testing combat spells.

I agree that the bloodlines need to be refined, but they're a definite step in the right direction. They do have a half-finished feel to them, so I hope that the finished product will smooth those rough edges.

One cricicism about the Draconic bloodline I'd offer is that claw attacks seem out of place for a poor BAB class with Stat with higher priority than STR. I propose a really weak breath weapon (30' line or 15' cone, Ref save for half, damage as elemental ray) instead. That's much more draconic IMO.

Merci Beaucoup! BTW is there a french translation for PFRPG, or do you have to make due with the english edition?


Sacrebleu! you have uncovered me yes i'm french

If there ever is a french PFRPG i would probably not buy it
my reading is good , my writing is poor as you ca see
but i need the practice

I also love the bloodlines its an amazing idea but for the wrong class
That is unless they give it better HP, better BAB , better AC
(they wont do that)
the title sorcerer wouldn't fit anymore they would have to call it
(the blood warrior)

the claws are useless Poor AC,poor BAB
the ray is pretty much useless afther first level

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