Our Magus Playtest

Round 3: Revised Magus Playtest

So over at Brennor's RPG Corner we converted a Fighter 1/Wizard 3 heading to Eldritch Knight into a Magus at 4th level playing the Savage Tide AP. He just reached 5th Level, but haven't had a chance to do any fighting with him yet.

A few things we tweaked, the main one being an Arcana.

The Play Test as writen allows a Familar

Familiar (Ex): A magus with this magus arcana gains a familiar, using his magus level as his effective wizard level. This familiar follows the rules for familiars presented in the arcane bond wizard class feature.

We took this one step further and allowed a Bonded Item -- in this case an sword! We figured a bond to a magical creature or an item is basically the same thing, and since this is a play test, let's test it. I must say the Bonded Item has worked out wonderfully for the entire concept, feel, and mechanics of the character. (Espcially when some Bullywugs showed up with a Rust Monster! Yikes!)

Maxing out the focus of the weapon, took Hierloom Weapon Trait, made it a Aldori "Sasserine" Dueling sword, and have Weapon Finesse, and just picked up Improved Arcane Bond for it. This has been a great RP tool and mechanical boost for the character.

Also as a tweak we added Burning Disarm to the spell list because the character had it prior to the switch, and it just made sense to us to keep it.

Something else we noticed, Combat Casting Feat. Do you need it?

It turns out in this build, I don't.

Looking at him at 5th level now...

INT 20 (+5)
Focused Mind Trait (+2)
Level 5 (+5)
Improved Bonded Item (+2)
Concentration Total 14

He can only cast 1st and 2nd level spells anyhow.
Level 1 DC 17 (Fail 1-2)
Level 2 DC 19 (Fail 1-4)

Sure Combat Casting would make these never fail, but the chance seems not worth spending a feat. And if you really need to, you can just take a hit to attack rolls for a boost in Concentration for that critical spell that HAS to work.

Then come 8th level you get Improved Spell Combat for +2 more Concentration so you look like this:

INT 20 (+5)
Focused Mind Trait (+2)
Level 8 (+8)
Improved Bonded Item (+2)
Improved Spell Combat (+2)
Concentration Total 19

You can actually cast 3rd level spells at this point and have been able to.

Level 1 DC 17 (Auto Success)
Level 2 DC 19 (Auto Success)
Level 3 DC 21 Fail on a 1!

It stays pretty nice from here on out.

So for my Magus, no Combat Casting!

I think that it's a little telling that every Magus build I've seen (including the one I made) has taken the Focused Mind trait.

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Patryn of Elvenshae wrote:
I think that it's a little telling that every Magus build I've seen (including the one I made) has taken the Focused Mind trait.

I didn't on my build, but that's because I wanted Diplomacy and Bluff as class skills. I did take Combat Casting, however. And most of the time I take the penalty to attacks to get the Concentration bonus when I use Spell Combat, so I have no chance of failure.

Dark Archive

It's unnecessary at high levels (10+) but it sure helps at low. You can always take penalties to hit so you can automatically complete though; so I'd say combat casting certainly isn't useful; and focused mind is fine for a trait.

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