Eidolon too powerful at early levels?


Round 2: Summoner and Witch


Here's the set up. We began the RotRL AP. Characters rolled 4d6 for ability scores. I allowed feats from the Bestiary for the Summoners Eidolon.

The player chose a quadraped with claws, claws, pounce as evolutions and multiattack for a feat. Giving him 5 attacks on a charge, AC 14 (18 after Mage Armor) and 22 hitpoints. (Max hp at first level)

We quickly found the 5 attacks to be very overpowering, and with an 18 AC and 22 hp he had as much AC as the best PC and twice the hp. The other characters quickly felt unneeded in combat.

I asked him to change one of the claws, which he politely accepted and changed to Improved Natural Armor. Now he had a 20 AC after Mage Armor.

When the characters leveled to 2nd, he took a tail as a new evolution and Improved Natural Armor as a feat. (Now at 29hp and 23 AC after Mage Armor.)

Perhaps we are misreading the class, but this has played out as very overpowering, making it less fun for the rest of the group. How this will play out in higher levels, I'm unsure. But currently it is making the game less fun for the other characters.

The only time the eidolon has been threatened has been when they come upon a creature with ranged touch attacks, i.e. the quasit Erylum (sp?).

Any suggestions, or help is appreciated.


shieldknight01 wrote:
22 hitpoints. (Max hp at first level)

Eidolons do not get automatic maximum hit points at first level, and even if they did it would only be for the first hit die.

Also, how exactly is the Eidolon attacking with all four legs simultaneously?


I wouldn't allow the rear claw attacks unless the eidolon successfully pounces. Rather silly to imagine the eidolon doing a bite / claw / claw then jumping into the air to use the rear claws.

There's no real reason for Multi-Attack at this point as he has no secondary attacks. The bite / claw / claw are all primary attacks and the eidolon gets Multi-Attack at 9th level.


Zurai wrote:
Also, how exactly is the Eidolon attacking with all four legs simultaneously?

The same way an Intellect Devourer does, I guess.


As I stated above, we removed the "rear" claw attacks. I will have him change his hp, thanks for the reminder. Still, seems like a high AC and hp for that low of a level.

Paizo Employee Director of Game Design

Shieldknight,

I appreciate your feedback on this matter. It falls in line with what many others have pointed out. I am still looking into a number of different solutions to bring the eidolon a bit more in line with assumed norms.

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer
Paizo Publishing

Dark Archive

The claws thing might be an issue. My Eidolon also has 4 claws and a bite (with trip no pounce yet). It's been my experience at lvl one and two that the Eidolon is fairly powerful but takes a stop at suck town when faced by anything with DR or hardness.


I guess, the big issue for me with the Summoner is that it seems like you are getting two PC's for the price of one. A, albeit somewhat weak, spellcaster who focuses in summoning, and a front line fighter. At least that is the combination I'm seeing with our group.

Maybe if the Eidolon had fewer evolution points to spend, a slower natural armor progression and a d8 HD instead of d10. What if you try to treat it more like an advanced animal companion or advanced familiar? I like the idea/concept it just seems to be a little overpowering at the moment.


YuenglingDragon wrote:
The claws thing might be an issue. My Eidolon also has 4 claws and a bite (with trip no pounce yet). It's been my experience at lvl one and two that the Eidolon is fairly powerful but takes a stop at suck town when faced by anything with DR or hardness.

Don't all 1st and 2nd level characters visit that town when faced with anything that has DR or hardness? LOL


YuenglingDragon wrote:
The claws thing might be an issue. My Eidolon also has 4 claws and a bite (with trip no pounce yet). It's been my experience at lvl one and two that the Eidolon is fairly powerful but takes a stop at suck town when faced by anything with DR or hardness.

While true, how often do you really see DR or hardness at early levels? Plus the other characters have the same issue with this as the Eidolon.


shieldknight01 wrote:
While true, how often do you really see DR or hardness at early levels?

Every time you fight skeletons. Or swarms. Or fey. Or maniacal intelligent flesh golems wielding scythes which they then proceed to full-Power Attack crit the resident rogue into a wall with.

(yes, that last actually happened. ~200 damage to a level ... 7? character, and it's in a published module)

Scarab Sages

shieldknight01 wrote:


The player chose a quadraped with claws, claws, pounce as evolutions and multiattack for a feat. Giving him 5 attacks on a charge, AC 14 (18 after Mage Armor) and 22 hitpoints. (Max hp at first level)

I asked him to change one of the claws, which he politely accepted and changed to Improved Natural Armor. Now he had a 20 AC after Mage Armor.

When the characters leveled to 2nd, he took a tail as a new evolution and Improved Natural Armor as a feat. (Now at 29hp and 23 AC after Mage Armor.)

From the way I have read the summoner I have noticed a mistake right out by your summoner player - he cant select improved natural armour evolution till level 5 as the document says "This evolution can be taken once for every five levels the summoner possesses" since he is only lev 1 or 2 this is not allowed.

for AC the eidolon has AC14 as you stated so +2 for Dex & +2 for natural armour - A tiger animal companion has the same AC14 - +1 Nat armour & +3 from Dex plus he could also wear armour although at this level the character probably wont have the money to buy it. The companion can also have mage armour so no difference. as another comparison with other animal companions - boar AC17 (+1 Dex +6 Nat) or Crocodile AC16 (+2 Dex +4 Nat) or my favourite Velociraptor AC14 (+3 Dex +1 Nat with Lev4 this can increase Dex to 18 making a +4 Bonus) & these are all before adding barding which as rules currently stand the Eidolon cant do (I agree with this too)

as for hps I have never seen anywhere that animal companions dont get max hps like pcs do so I played it the same for my eidolon (if someone can point me to the rule I would appreciate it) - if you read animal companions for druids they too get 2HD at first level the difference being they are D8s not D10s like the eidolon gets (which maybe should be brought to the same so they are on par) & if you gave them the same hps rule of max at level 1 then they would have 18hps compared to 22 which is still 50% higher than any pc (roughly)

the attacks - the player had 4 claws & bite plus pounce - I would rule that he could only use the last two claws with the pounce which requires a charge attack to gain then he would be limited to claw/claw/bite after that bringing it inline with the above tiger having the same attack - I would like to see pounce given a level minimum of say 4

multiattack feat wont help much here as all the attacks are primary not secondary - although I am not sure how to read the feat exactly - does the claw/claw count as 2 attacks or 1 attack if its one then the bite makes 2 so the eidolon or any monster gets an extra attack ?? someone help me here

so is the eidolon too powerful - my opinion is at low levels no if you compare it to the animal companion which it is very similar but it does have the capacity to be broken at higher levels if a player chooses to


Ceefood wrote:
shieldknight01 wrote:


The player chose a quadraped with claws, claws, pounce as evolutions and multiattack for a feat. Giving him 5 attacks on a charge, AC 14 (18 after Mage Armor) and 22 hitpoints. (Max hp at first level)

I asked him to change one of the claws, which he politely accepted and changed to Improved Natural Armor. Now he had a 20 AC after Mage Armor.

When the characters leveled to 2nd, he took a tail as a new evolution and Improved Natural Armor as a feat. (Now at 29hp and 23 AC after Mage Armor.)

From the way I have read the summoner I have noticed a mistake right out by your summoner player - he cant select improved natural armour evolution till level 5 as the document says "This evolution can be taken once for every five levels the summoner possesses" since he is only lev 1 or 2 this is not allowed.

he can take the Nat armor at 1/6/11 is the way I read that. It would say like other abilities you can't take this until 5th level which it doesn't.

Jason Maybe an easy fix is to charge 2x the current evolutions for claws/tentacles or any extra attacks.


What if the Eidolon couldn't act independently? Rework the class to be a Mechanist or something? That way they'd have to spend a turn controlling their pet as opposed to casting a spell and attacking in the same round. I dislike intentionally nerfing someone, but the Eidolon as is gets out of hand rather quickly.

Scarab Sages

if it can only be taken once for every five levels then how does lev 1 fit in since you cant divide it equally by 5 ?

just my opinion but there are other rules I have read this way as well so I hope I am not wrong

I do agree that better wording is needed on a few rules for the summoner - heres hoping the revised document which must be due out soon I am guessing since the "update summoner" thread has been locked apparently


Shane LeRose wrote:
What if the Eidolon couldn't act independently? Rework the class to be a Mechanist or something? That way they'd have to spend a turn controlling their pet as opposed to casting a spell and attacking in the same round. I dislike intentionally nerfing someone, but the Eidolon as is gets out of hand rather quickly.

I really, REALLY dislike that. I think that the funniest part is to control two characters and, having played the ranger beastmaster build of 4th edition I find quite frustrating to divide my actions between my ranger and my beloved pet. Many times I´ve found myself just letting the less useful one to sit far away from the fight while the other does his job.


Jason Bulmahn wrote:

Shieldknight,

I appreciate your feedback on this matter. It falls in line with what many others have pointed out. I am still looking into a number of different solutions to bring the eidolon a bit more in line with assumed norms.

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer
Paizo Publishing

Glad to hear it. Let me just say thank you, I know some posters may snip (not directed at anyone in particular), but I believe many (most?) of us really appreciate you taking our input and actually allowing it to affect the classes. Hopefully we can all make a better, more fun game together.


Ceefood wrote:

if it can only be taken once for every five levels then how does lev 1 fit in since you cant divide it equally by 5 ?

just my opinion but there are other rules I have read this way as well so I hope I am not wrong

I do agree that better wording is needed on a few rules for the summoner - heres hoping the revised document which must be due out soon I am guessing since the "update summoner" thread has been locked apparently

It is really no different then this spell. By your reasoning you would only get the bonus at 3rd level so why even have it as a 1st level spell?

Divine Favor
School evocation; Level cleric 1, paladin 1
Casting Time 1 standard action
Components V, S, DF
Range personal
Target you
Duration 1 minute
Calling upon the strength and wisdom of a deity, you gain a +1
luck bonus on attack and weapon damage rolls for every three
caster levels you have (at least +1, maximum +3). The bonus
doesn’t apply to spell damage.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I would definately say that some limitation on the number of limbs/attacks needs to be put in place. When I playtest the summoner with an eidolon with 2claws and a bite (at level 5) it wasnt particularly overpowered. But once you start stacking up the claws, and tentacles along with pounce and it gets real unreasonable real fast.

Scarab Sages

Mahrdol wrote:
[(at least +1, maximum +3).

I read it that the "at least +1" is what tells me to apply it at lev 1 & I would then apply it again at lev 6 & lev 9 but hey maybe I am wrong - its been known to happen hehehehe


I had my pc's fight a 10th level summoner on monday, and I cut the Eidolons Natural armor progression in half. I think that alone was helpful, as it cut the AC down to 24 (from 29) though it dealt enough damage to cripple the barbarian in 2-3 turns. Part of this was the STR bonus gained from being large, though another part of it was the barbarian having a suck AC, not raging, and not power attacking.


default wrote:
10th level summoner ... Eidolons ... AC down to 24 (from 29)

And how to you get AC 29 without Armor, which he cant use anymore?


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Teydyn wrote:
default wrote:
10th level summoner ... Eidolons ... AC down to 24 (from 29)
And how to you get AC 29 without Armor, which he cant use anymore?

Just guessing here,

10 starting point
Natural armor +10 base
Natural armor +2 large
Natural armor +4 from improved natural armor evolution (x2)
Dex + 3 (assume quad as base)

=29 before armor/shield/other bonuses


10 base
+2 base form
+2 large
+2 imp. nat armor
+8 chart bonus (which i made 4)
+4 dex (3 serpentine +2 advancement, -1 large)
-1 size
for a total of 29. which could gain mage armor as well as barkskin, but the summoner chose to flee rather than fight (the story was Big E was an imaginary friend-turned-real, and the summoner inadvertently summoned the eidolon when he was upset, and it killed whoever upset him. He figured he had sorcerer blood, and hid his spellcasting from the group, never drawing the connection between E and the people who died.)


Jason Bulmahn wrote:

Shieldknight,

I appreciate your feedback on this matter. It falls in line with what many others have pointed out. I am still looking into a number of different solutions to bring the eidolon a bit more in line with assumed norms.

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer
Paizo Publishing

The improved natural attack feat, and the evolution(Improved Damage) that does the same thing might be an issue also.


Zurai wrote:
shieldknight01 wrote:
While true, how often do you really see DR or hardness at early levels?

Every time you fight skeletons. Or swarms. Or fey. Or maniacal intelligent flesh golems wielding scythes which they then proceed to full-Power Attack crit the resident rogue into a wall with.

(yes, that last actually happened. ~200 damage to a level ... 7? character, and it's in a published module)

Which module is this? I might need to borrow from it.


wraithstrike wrote:
Which module is this? I might need to borrow from it.

Spoiler:
Pathfinder #2, The Skinsaw Murders. The flesh golem is at the very end, in Xanesha's tower.

Zurai wrote:
shieldknight01 wrote:
While true, how often do you really see DR or hardness at early levels?

Every time you fight skeletons. Or swarms. Or fey. Or maniacal intelligent flesh golems wielding scythes which they then proceed to full-Power Attack crit the resident rogue into a wall with.

(yes, that last actually happened. ~200 damage to a level ... 7? character, and it's in a published module)

I would consider this in the mid-level range, not low level. Low level being 5 and below.


shieldknight01 wrote:
I would consider this in the mid-level range, not low level. Low level being 5 and below.

Skeletons and swarms are level 6+? News to me.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Zurai wrote:
shieldknight01 wrote:
I would consider this in the mid-level range, not low level. Low level being 5 and below.
Skeletons and swarms are level 6+? News to me.

I think he meant the maniacle scythe wielding flesh golems that Power Attack every attack.

Dark Archive

shieldknight01 wrote:
I would consider this in the mid-level range, not low level. Low level being 5 and below.

Been playing PFS modules with a fighter to lvl 3 and my summoner to almost 3 now. Several of our enemies have had either a hardness value or DR. I believe there were four in one module, four in another, and a few big bads in others. They all kind of blur together now. My Eidolon has mainly had to get by dealing 1-2 damage per hit on the highest rolls and not a thing on others. Trip works as long as it hits, though, so that was something.

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