All Arcane Kingmaker?


Kingmaker

Liberty's Edge

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Okay so my group has had the idea of running a campaign where everyone starts as an arcane caster. Then Kingmaker came out and we want to start that when we wrap up our current story.

So here's my question. Do you guys think a group of 5 level 1 wizards/sorcerers/witches can handle the AP? Mind you we'd be multiclassing into dual builds, like Arcane Trickster and Mystic Theurge, so by the 3rd part we should be rocking.

Any advice/comments or is it just a suicide mission for this AP?

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Being a sandbox style game, it should work fine. The players will choose their own pace, and probably tend towards resting more often early in the game. Also they'll have more time for magic item crafting too. This sounds like a fun idea for a game and hope to see more of it. An Arcane Kingdom... genius.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

The problem with all arcane is the party is 'soft' on defence being consigned to lower hp (due to class hit dice) and low on armor class (armor limits due to arcane failure).

The advantage is one hell of an offensive punch to defeat an enemy at range, so if you keep the bad guys off of you, you can really grind up the opposition. Constructs like golems will be a concern (unlikely in Kingmaker given the nature of the AP) but something to consider.

It will be harder going if the enemy get hard onto you as the arcane magic represents your principle offensive and defense and having bad guys slashing at you at melee range will hinder the arcane capability of the party as a whole.

I would recommend a good balance of 'gish' as the majority of the party with one or two pure casters. The Duskblade (3.5) is ready made for such a role, so a few duskblade like characters who can do easy double duty as melee types will make an all arcane group quite viable.

I don't know if anyone as made a 'pathfinder' ready version of the duskblade.


An all arcane party is going to have trouble with any published adventure. It could be doable but I would recommend having 'back up' characters ready to step in as needed. Because, unless the DM is seriously pulling punches you WILL suffer losses before you get to a point where you can hold your own.

Scarab Sages

Yeah, if you're doing an all arcane group I would highly recommend someone starts out as the other half of their 'combo' class later on. As mentioned, if you have a Mystic Theurge, an Eldritch Knight, or an Arcane Trickster, have them all start as the non-arcane parts of their paths (cleric, fighter, rogue, whatever). Then after a couple levels of that they can multiclass and get their prestige going.

I say this because the hardest part of doing an all arcane group is going to be the low levels. Everyone will be very squishy, and even just a few good rolls from the DM can result in half the party going down (one arrow each even). If you have some guys be their non-arcane classes early, that gives everyone time to build up some HP, get a nice spell repertoire, and should help avoid that early onset disease otherwise known as 1st level PC death.


Sounds like playing the first Final Fantasy game with all black wizards - doable, but potentially hard. Do it! And post the outcome!


Lilith wrote:
Sounds like playing the first Final Fantasy game with all black wizards - doable, but potentially hard. Do it! And post the outcome!

used to play baldurs gate and similar on the pc with 6 arcane characters...it meant the instant a monster appeared on the screen it got by 6 magic missiles!!

I think this is doable in Kingmaker, especially if the party have a few hirelings/mounts to do the heavy lifting

my group are just getting sorted and it looks a bit druid heavy


A Sorcerer/Dragon Disciple could function pretty well as a tough character. Combine the d12 hit dice with a bunch of buffs and he should be pretty decent in melee. Of course, he won't come into his own until later levels, so the party will still be rather defenseless in the beginning.


...I had to strongly encourage my players to create secondary support characters after I received this planned list of PCs for Level 1:

1. Cleric

2. Sorcerer

3. Sorcerer

From what I can tell, thankfully the backups will be a Paladin and a Ranger. I should find out for certain in a few hours.

The Exchange

What about giving them a henchman or two for the first adventure? Say a half-orc warrior1 or the like. Someone that he wizards pay to stand in the way until they are ready to go it alone or he dies.


I don't see any real problem as long as you work together to build the party. An all-arcane 4 person party:

Tank -- Summoner (well, his Eidolon is the tank, but you get the picture)
Healer -- Bard or Witch
Trap Detection -- Spellthief (Complete Adventurer)
Arcane Caster -- Take your pick

Now, if you wanted to have an all arcane FULL caster party, that's going to be rough.

Scarab Sages

I've always fancied an all Wizard party, not necessarily full casters but variants on the Wizard type.

Tank - Conjurer - Lots of summon spells is the key.
Healer - Necromancer/Cleric/ Mystic Theurge - 3/2 Wiz/Cleric until MT, only need for Cleric is the heals.
DPS - Evoker - Yeah, I know evokers aren't always the best, but he can still specialize in other areas and for the dangerous early zones when not much has resistances or SR, high damage spells are best.
Skills - Diviner/Rogue/Arcane Trickster - Not much to explain here.


Black Moria wrote:

The problem with all arcane is the party is 'soft' on defence being consigned to lower hp (due to class hit dice) and low on armor class (armor limits due to arcane failure).

I'm not so sure, a level one wizard after casting shield and mage armour, with 14 Dex will have an AC of 20. That's better than the level one fighter!


French Wolf wrote:
What about giving them a henchman or two for the first adventure? Say a half-orc warrior1 or the like. Someone that he wizards pay to stand in the way until they are ready to go it alone or he dies.

Thank you, that's basically what one of the Arcane characters did (he made a fighter). The other one made a Sorcerer as a back-up in case his new primary one (a ranger) perished. So thankfully, everything worked out.

Liberty's Edge

Karui Kage wrote:

I've always fancied an all Wizard party, not necessarily full casters but variants on the Wizard type.

Tank - Conjurer - Lots of summon spells is the key.
Healer - Necromancer/Cleric/ Mystic Theurge - 3/2 Wiz/Cleric until MT, only need for Cleric is the heals.
DPS - Evoker - Yeah, I know evokers aren't always the best, but he can still specialize in other areas and for the dangerous early zones when not much has resistances or SR, high damage spells are best.
Skills - Diviner/Rogue/Arcane Trickster - Not much to explain here.

This is along the lines we were thinking.

Also I'm only worried about suprise combat as far as squishy casters goes. With 5 mages in a group that's alot of battle control.

I have to say I'm excited about trying this. I'll post more when we get closer to starting our campaign.


Interesting thread. I think that at mid to higher levels, an all Arcane party would kick some tail. A lack of healing would be the only major problem that I could see. OTOH, just take a few levels in leadership or UMD and that issue is reduced.


Which in an adventure setup like Kingmaker is worth more then normal. Then again one of the biggest helps in Pathfinder to the all Arcane party is item creation. Wands and scrolls can often be created with some overlap and can be circulated around the party.

There is also taking a bit of the party gold that isn't going toward armor and weapons, and just hire a Warrior or even Fighter to stand in front of everyone. If your party was less good you could even Charm them into helping you at lower rates.


I think the Advanced Player's Guide classes would be much help. Summoner with an Eidolon can be a very effective tank. The summon spells they cast with their class ability last a minute per level. With evolutions and whatnot, my wife's level 2 summoner has a serpentine eidolon with a 19 AC, and a 10-ft reach bite attack.

Witch is also pretty cool, IMO. Take sleep or charm as your first hex, or even evil eye. They can also cast cure spells and have a healing hex they can use if you want to go that route. Plus the high Int bonus for spells can lead to some high craft checks eventually.

Sczarni

Summoner: Tank
Bard: Bard
Wizard: God (maybe diviner, maybe conjurer)
Sorcerer: Spam-Spells, consider Dragon Disciple
Witch: Whatever the heck you'd want.

If you survived the 1st couple of levels, this party would absolutely destroy any AP I've seen to date. Golems and magic resistant things would get shredded by the summons and wall spells, anything else would die to say 4 SoD spells every turn.

With proper spell selection, redundancy in operations, and good tactics, by 4th or 5th level you could coast.

The options of Item Crafting, Spell Research, and regular old Craft Skill twinking only widen your avenues of approach. Consider them frosting on a cake made of Pirate-Ninja awesomeness.

What's best, I could see this party actually getting along, making a nation work, and having a very good reason to stick together (mutual survival, if nothing else). Perhaps I'll pitch this to the group when we start...

-t


I don't think item creation as the frosting on top, more like the super yummy layer in side. Craft Construct... it'll be later in the AP for sure unless the group has access to other books with lower level constructs, but by the 2nd to last AP or tail end of the 4th (8th level) they'll be able to start making Flesh Golems. Clay and Wood possibly being added at or slightly into the last AP. Shield Guardian Flesh Golems for the party at the start of the final AP? A little ghoulish perhaps, but doable.

To add, not everyone needs to take the same item creation feats. All you need is the main creator and then spell contributors to the process. Say the Wizards has Craft Wand, he can be the primary creator of an Arcane Cure Wand using the spell provided by the Witch or Bard from psionichamster's suggested group. A Bard gets evil good when you have a large number of summoned creatures.


The podcast from the 3.5 Private Sanctuary did features on every class and as part of that would over view a build on how to (if possible) build an all-class party

wizards were episode 102


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
stuart haffenden wrote:
Black Moria wrote:

The problem with all arcane is the party is 'soft' on defence being consigned to lower hp (due to class hit dice) and low on armor class (armor limits due to arcane failure).

I'm not so sure, a level one wizard after casting shield and mage armour, with 14 Dex will have an AC of 20. That's better than the level one fighter!

For that combat. What about the rest of the adventuring day, unless you like a 15 minute adventuring day. The issue is that you are swapping your offensive punch for defense. Sure, you have a better AC but now, particularly at first level, you only got your school ability (if using Pathfinder) and a mediocre weapon selection because you got no spell slots left for offensive spells like color spray, sleep, burning hands, etc.

Liberty's Edge

Black Moria wrote:

The Duskblade (3.5) is ready made for such a role, so a few duskblade like characters who can do easy double duty as melee types will make an all arcane group quite viable.

I don't know if anyone as made a 'pathfinder' ready version of the duskblade.

Well ... It's not a Duskblade, but if all goes well, keep an eye out for the big summer / GenCon edition of Kobold Quarterly - there just might be a Pathfinder base class that will fit the bill PERFECTLY!


The Party I am running through this is going to be squishy too.

!) Witch (Witch Doctor)
2) Sorcerer (going Harrower)
3) Fighter (specializing in Crossbow and light armor)
4) Ranger (two weapon style)
5) Rogue (going assassin)

I am hoping the two lightly armored melee can hold them long enough for the mages and fighter to rip them down as well as rogue sneak attacks. Witch will be taking some minor healing. Should be interesting. Lots of offensive capability.

Liberty's Edge

My $0.02 -

My group just started tonight. We have a druid, a sorcerer, and a rogue. No dedicated fighter-type, no dedicated healer.

Their party make up is unbalanced, the druid and rogue are not remotely optimized, and they spent the entire first session rolling under 10 on d20s...

Happs and his bandits murdered them, and I had to deus ex machina them out of it.

Now, obviously, party make up wasn't the only reason they bit it, but it was a contributing factor - the addition of a fighter or a cleric to the party would've changed things incredibly.


Try letting one or two of them run two PCs maybe?

The backup can be a mostly-silent mercenary or something along those lines.

That's working well for my group- they obliterated the two bandit camps even with the bandits having 4 extra hp and 1 extra ac.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Jagyr Ebonwood wrote:

My $0.02 -

My group just started tonight. We have a druid, a sorcerer, and a rogue. No dedicated fighter-type, no dedicated healer.

The lynchpin for this group is the druid. If the druid does not take advantage of the available options, the party is in trouble. Even if the druid is taking advantage, the rest of the party still has to play smart and use tactics, since having someone spend the majority of their actions in combat casting cure spells (which is normally what people mean by "dedicated healer"), instead of SoD/SoS and/or damage/summoning spells, is generally a poor use of resources, anyway. It's almost always better to take out your opponents as fast as possible than try to heal the damage as it's occurring.

Tip 1: Choose a combat capable Animal Companion. The druid's animal companion can substitute for a fighter for the first few levels.

Tip 2: Use Spontaneous Summoning. The druid can spontaneously cast summon nature's ally spells, which provides additional attackers/targets in combat.

Tip 3: Use wands/scrolls for healing. The druid can (and should) use cure spell completion and spell trigger items.

The druid I would recommend for this group (15 pt buy, traits) is:

Human Druid 1, Green Faith, Favored Class - Druid (+1 Skill Rank)
13 Str, 14 Dex, 12 Con, 10 Int, 16 Wis, 10 Cha
Nature's Bond - Animal Companion (Bear)
Diplomacy 1, Handle Animal 1, Knowledge (Nature) 1, Ride 1, Spellcraft 1, Survival 1
Noble Born (Medvyed), Rich Parents (900 gp Starting Wealth)
Eschew Materials, Toughness*
Hide Armor, Light Wooden Shield, Sling, 10 Sling Bullets, Shortspear, Scimitar, Club, Dagger, Backpack, Bedroll, Winter Blanket, 8 Candles, Flint and Steel, Oil (2 pints), Iron Pot, Belt Pouch, Trail Rations (2 days), Sack, Tent, Waterskin, Whetstone, Holly and Mistletoe, Cold Weather Outfit (starting clothing), Traveler's Outfit, Light Horse, Bit and Bridle, Riding Saddle, Saddlebags, Feed (2 days), wand of cure light wounds (50 charges), 4 gp

AC 17, 12 hp, +1 melee or +2 ranged, Fort +3, Ref +2, Will +5, Init +2, CMB +1, CMD 13

*- If want to increase the effectiveness of your summoning, take Spell Focus (Conjuration) instead of Toughness and then Augment Summoning at 3rd. Natural Spell is a must have at 5th level, of course.


Actually I think the other answer here is hirelings. Abviously prices are negotiable but if you start at an assumption of 3 sp/day for a first level warrior or even an expert trapper you may see the parties survival odds improve. It would also be an interesting way to introduce NPCs that the PCs can later take on as advisers or general hires for thier kingdom.

Adept and warrior NPC top the list, but Experts don't hurt either. Hire four off-season trappers or hunters as guards for the survey expeditions. Even adding extra ranged support can help. Get an adept or two and be ready to pay for thier extra spells to heal and tend your wounded guards. :-D

4 simple 1st level guards for a month should be something like 33 gold and 6 silver. 10 gp a casting for cure light wounds, plus dayly waged fir other skills.


Have the party be able to purchase war-trained dogs after the first encounter at the inn/fort. They should be available as the innkeeper should invest in those anyway, so a few extra dogs in the order shouldn't be a problem.

It's the first edition way...

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