Tankage?


Advice

Sovereign Court

Using the Core, APG and Inner Sea Guide. How can I get a human fighter of level 3 to do just that? Draw enemies to me and protect my friends?


Aazen wrote:
Using the Core, APG and Inner Sea Guide. How can I get a human fighter of level 3 to do just that? Draw enemies to me and protect my friends?

Snuggle up to Rogue Eidolon's excellent fighter guide here

Personally, I recommend taking a look at his "Defender of the Weak" build for ideas and inspiration.


Aazen wrote:
Using the Core, APG and Inner Sea Guide. How can I get a human fighter of level 3 to do just that? Draw enemies to me and protect my friends?

There honestly aren't a lot of way to do the tank role as it is understood from MMOs and the like since there is no "threat" system stand-in in pathfinder as far as I'm aware. You can focus on someone to get in the middle where most will opt for full attacks or go for combat maneuvers so you can hinder their ability to get to other members, but aside from a few spells in the APG nothing explicitly makes the attack you. It's always up to GM choice which is why "tanks" tend to be difficult to actually make.


Caius wrote:
Aazen wrote:
Using the Core, APG and Inner Sea Guide. How can I get a human fighter of level 3 to do just that? Draw enemies to me and protect my friends?
There honestly aren't a lot of way to do the tank role as it is understood from MMOs and the like since there is no "threat" system stand-in in pathfinder as far as I'm aware. You can focus on someone to get in the middle where most will opt for full attacks or go for combat maneuvers so you can hinder their ability to get to other members, but aside from a few spells in the APG nothing explicitly makes the attack you. It's always up to GM choice which is why "tanks" tend to be difficult to actually make.

This pretty well sums it up you could look at feats like step up and the rest of the chain to chase down someone who is trying to duck you and around level 6 you could look at combat patrol but:

A) you better have a ton of extra movement
B) get used to only making standard actions as all that movement counts against you so no full attacks.


The closest to a tank you can get is to use a reach weapon + tripping + combat reflexes. Eventually getting combat patrol. Get feats like step up, following step, etc.. This will allow you to have lots of AOO's and an enormous reach to trip up mobs. Once you get them tripped they can't get near the lower AC characters.

However the wizard is probably the best tank if they select the correct spells. If you understand "tank" to mean controlling the movement and positioning of mobs.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder PF Special Edition, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I see you're thinking in MMORG mode. One big difference to remember is that you "tank" by placement, because unlike World of Warcraft, Everquest et. al. Enemies can't simply just move through each other. :)

Grand Lodge

There's also the spell Paladin's Sacrifice which you take damage and all ill effects of an attack or spell but get no save. But that's a paladin spell and not until later levels, like 6 I think.

There's also the various shield feats in the APG that gives adjacent allies cover and what not, but I can't remember what they are.


taking a level of cleric and using the ''command'' spell for a poor man's ''taunt'' might work to a degree.


Rule one: Forget all that stuff from MMORPGs. These types of games are horribly crippled in one very aspect: They pit you against a stupid machine.

While the game developers usually put a lot of effort into making the machine pretend it isn't stupid, they can give it a set of instructions, like a plan, and no plan will ever survive contact with an enemy.

The machine cannot really react, cannot really think.

So they introduce "aggro", an inadequate crutch of a system that will govern the enemies behaviour based on mathematics.

Do not misunderstand me: Those games can be great, and these aggro systems are doing a well enough job in the circumstances. It's simply the limitation of the medium that means the computer cannot compete with what pen and paper RPGs have to control enemies: A thinking mind.

In Pathfinder (and all the other RPGs), the GM (by whatever name he's known in that game) controls the enemies. He can actually think, act and react to the actions of the players - which, in an RPG, are virtually unlimited in possibility.

That means that the only thing that governs the enemies' behaviour in RPGs is the GM.

That situation has the potential to make things a lot more authentic than the computer games. Of course, it can also be a bad thing: A bad GM will play creatures too smart, or too dumb, use knowledge the creature isn't supposed to know, completely ignore the fact that the creature isn't a coldly calculating robot, and so on.

What I took about seven pages to try to say is simply this:

The ability to be the "tank" depends a lot on the GM, his competence and his attitude.

If the GM doesn't bother with "realism" and believable behaviour for the critters he pits against you, you can simply forget the tanking thing. The enemies - even if they're dumb animals or something like that - will bypass you to attack your more squishy companions, will make sure you cannot get full attacks or anything else.

That having been said, there are also good GMs out there, and others that might want to learn if someone points out what their behaviour does (be sure to point it out in a respectable fashion). In that case, there are ways to make the enemy take note of you:

As others have said, placement can be important. Take advantage of the terrain whenever possible. If there's no way around or past you, the enemy simply has to go through you.

And the combat style suggestions are sound, too: With a reach weapon, you increase the area you influence or control. Enemies will have a harder time getting past you, since they have to move more to avoid AoOs (if they can even do it). Step-Up (and maybe Combat Patrol) further help you in this regard, since you can prevent others from just stepping away from you so they can do things like use magic or ranged attacks unmolested.

Combat Reflexes means you get more attacks of opportunity (coupled with a decent charisma score, but many warrior classes benefit from that, anyway), which mean you can punish anyone trying to get past you.

Combat Expertise followed by Improved Trip and later Greater Trip is a good way from limiting enemies' movements: You can attempt to trip enemies as an AoO, which means you can stop them cold when they try to get past you. Greater Trip means that their fall will provoke a further AoO (which you can use to hit them, provided you have Combat Reflexes and AoOs left - but it's relatively easy to get enough AoOs to sweep two enemies off their feat and then kick them when they're down). When they try to stand up, you get yet another AoO (though you cannot keep them down with this one, so you cannot prevent them from standing up. However, when they move after that, they get still another AoO).

All that means that with a decent CMB for tripping, it will be hard to move through your threatened space without ending up on your ass with a bloody face and missing teeth.

And then, when it's your turn, they're in range for a full attack, and when they try to get away from you, you can start the dance yet again.

And since you can trip on your own turn, too, you can also move up to someone and knock him off his feet.

Standing up from prone requires a move action for most creatures, which means their ability to move or make full attacks will be severely hampered.

Of course, nothing of this is certain (but things would be boring if they were), but you still can have good chances to control how enemies move. Although some just can fly or teleport, not much you can do about that (with the feat Teleport Tactician, however, high-level fighters can even do something about that!)

A final remark: The MMO term "Tank" usually indicates someone there to soak up damage. Not good at dealing damage or otherwise harming the enemy, but good at withstanding and enduring damage.

Forget that in Pathfinder. You'll usually be able to both deal and avoid/endure copious amounts of damage.


I found that my Paladin became the da facto tank because he's really annoying to damage. High AC and lay on hands make it so there needs to be a lot of rolls to take him down significantly and he can dish out quit a bit of damage. When we had our monk he did the combat maneuver deal which made sure very few things made it to our casters and archers. Make it so it's very inconvenient to have your character ignored and you'll be able to tank to some effect.

Sovereign Court

Yeah. I actually prefer the Pen and Paper over the Screen Based, but I was looking at the way a Fighter can protect the healer and the damage dealer from getting squished. Ive been using Itimidate as of right now to convinve the bad guys that Im the most dangerous on the field. But when we start hitting the Fire Ball levels, that maybe more or less improbable if not impossible.

Liberty's Edge

I'm playing this kind of fighter myself currently. 20 point buy, looking like this (level 3):

Giles Maldorn
Human Fighter 3

Str 15
Dex 16
Con 14
Int 12
Wis 12
Cha 9

Traits: Ruins Explorer, Reckless

Feats: Weapon Proficiency (Bastard Sword), Weapon Focus (Bastard Sword), Combat Reflexes, Stand Still, Dodge

+1 heavy shield (just received as a quest reward)
MW Breastplate
MW Bastard Sword

This gives you a fairly standard sword-and-board fighter with a very nice AC (23 base, easily pumpable), decent hitting power (1d10+2 with a +7 to hit (+2 Str, +3 BAB, +1 Weapon Focus, +1 Masterwork)), and few drawbacks (thanks to the fighter's Armor Training). Not much in the skill department (though I do have three useful Knowledge skills to call on), but quite deadly in hand-to-hand combat. Current plan for development in Vital Strike at level 6 (to minimize the damage loss while maneuvering into position) and the level 4 stat boost to Strength (which will give additional damage and to-hit). Stand Still can lock down low-to-mid CMD opponents, which can work to either lock down casters or prevent enemies from charging the casters. With the high AC and decent Con, you'll be able to take a few solid hits (my character's current HP is 31 with favored class bonuses and taking average HP each level), which means you'll make a darned fine tank (a role that my character is filling right now).
You can tweak this a couple of ways - you can switch the Str and Dex (though you'll want both to be fairly high), you have almost complete freedom in what skills you take, and you can choose which 1h weapon you want to use with the shield - but overall, I think this should be about the baseline you're looking for for this sort of build.
Magius out.


Bodyguard, in harms way, stand still, saving shield, covering defense. First things to come to mind. You wont hurt things much but you'll be taking most of the damage.


Aazen wrote:
"I was looking at the way a Fighter can protect the healer and the damage dealer from getting squished. "

First off, you may not need to "protect" them as much as you think. Assuming the healer is a cleric, they are fairly tough, and can have decent AC as well. Even if the damage dealer is a wizard, they can have fairly good HP, and sweet defenses like mirror image, displacement or invisibility. And wait a minute... YOU should be the damage dealer!

Forget the MMORPG definition of tank, and ponder the more relevant definition of Tank from modern warfare. Tanks came to exist because there was a need for mobility and armor on static WWI battlefields. Once tanks began facing other tanks weapons were upgraded as was speed and protection.

In my opinion these three attributes define a tank: speed, armor, and weapons.

Speed - This is surprisingly important to staying relevant in combat, and also means adding flight once you get past the mid-levels. It might not be worth only using light armor or spending feats on things like fleet, or dodge/mobility, but your should always try to get spells like haste and fly, and stay on the lookout for magic items that enhance your mobility. Dealing damage is important, but much more so if you can get to the soft underbelly of the enemy!

Armor - This is probably the most direct comparison between you and a modern tank. Get your AC up, and know when to use items like a (tower) shield, or tactical decisions like a total defense (adds +6 to AC if you have a few ranks in acrobatics. Not sure if you even need to invest feats, but never neglect the chance to up your AC.

Weapons - While it is great to become the master of a weapon like the greatsword or glaive, what makes you truly deadly is your ability to ALWAYS be able to dish out damage. In addition to a melee weapon that you can two-handed power attack with, you should also have a thrown weapon like the javelin, and also a composite bow. Spend a feat every couple of levels on something other then your melee attacks, and keep a wide variety of weapons (made from a variety of materials). Quickdraw is a must-have feat for always being ready, especially once you start getting additional attacks every round.

If monsters ignore you to attack your friends, the monsters won't survive long.

Sczarni

Dotted.


Aazen wrote:
Yeah. I actually prefer the Pen and Paper over the Screen Based, but I was looking at the way a Fighter can protect the healer and the damage dealer from getting squished. Ive been using Itimidate as of right now to convinve the bad guys that Im the most dangerous on the field. But when we start hitting the Fire Ball levels, that maybe more or less improbable if not impossible.

Your best bet is a sword and shield two weapon fighting build: excellent survivability and excellent damage = the closest thing you are going to get to a true tank.

Dark Archive

If you want to draw attacks in PFS, make yourself a viable target: hit your enemies HARD and don't make your AC untouchable. Defensive "turtle" tank don't usually work as well in pen and paper RPGs as they do in online games because they don't give their enemies a good reason to want to attack them: the "tank" isn't much of a damage threat and they are very hard to hit/hurt.

I'd suggest selecting a good, versatile weapon like a bastard sword or a facata. You can turtle up when needed (equipping a shield) or hit hard (two-handed with Power Attack) when you aren't worried about your defenses or you need to do more damage quickly. An animated Shield is your friend, when you can afford one or find one.

Greater Trip is awesome for control (as well as offense and defense!), but the cost is high (13 INT and 3 feats), so make sure you plan for it from the beginning if that is where you are headed.

Step up is good, but it isn't GREAT until you get Step Up And Strike...so another 3 feat (and 13 DEX) sink there, too.

Combat Patrol sounds good on paper, but its a full round action, which makes it pretty useless in most situations.

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