Sense Motive pumping?


Advice

Liberty's Edge

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Alright, the name of the game is Sense Motive. What I need from you guys are static abilities, feats, etc. that give permanent bonuses to Sense Motive (i.e. not spells like Guidance). For the purpose of this exercise, you can assume a 20th level character.
Here’s what I have so far:
Wisdom maxed to 24 (and yes, I know I can get this higher with a Headband or Ioun Stone): +7
Sense Motive ranks: +20
Stern Gaze Inquisitor ability: +10
Skill Focus: +6
Alertness: +4
Eye for Talent: +2
Survivor Trait: +1
Snake Style: +2

What else can you give me? I want to max this sucker out. I will accept feats, supernatural abilities, multiclassing (as long as it provides more than it takes away from the inquisitor stern gaze), equipment… anything that’s permanent or useable many times per day. Help me out.

Now, why am I looking so hard for maxed out Sense Motive, you might ask? Well, if you take the things I have already, that’s a +52 to the check. That means, with Snake Style active, my AC will be between 53 and 72, depending on the d20. Even higher if I spend money on advanced magical equipment. Fun, right?

(And yes, yes, before you all jump down my throat, I know I’m not the first person to think of this. I just haven’t seen additional tips on the forums for how to pump the sense motive even higher. And yes, I also know that this would only work once per round and would therefore not be the best bet character wise. This is mostly for fun to see how high we can get it)

Dark Archive

Once we think of a Sense Motive masterwork tool, that'll be a +2 circumstance bonus.


A psychology book, or a detective book specializing in interrogation might work.


An item can be enchanted to grant up to a +15 bonus (competence, I think) to any skill ala cloak of elvenkind or ring of jumping.

Heroism (Inquisitor 3) adds a +2 morale bonus.

The Master Spy prestige class adds their class level (up to 10) to Sense Motive.

That's all I got for now...


Take one level in Synthesist Summoner, and get the Skilled(Sense Motive) evolution for a +8 racial bonus.

Of course, this only functions while you're in eidolon form ;)

Liberty's Edge

Matrixryu wrote:

Take one level in Synthesist Summoner, and get the Skilled(Sense Motive) evolution for a +8 racial bonus.

Of course, this only functions while you're in eidolon form ;)

Oh, that's a nice one. Bonus points for you.


I just looked up snake style. That is just insane.


You forgot +3 for class skill bonus. :)

Stone of Good Luck for 20,000 gp adds a +1 luck bonus to all ability checks, skill checks, and saving throws. Well worth it in general at later levels.

And what Chris said. You could try to create, with DM approval, a magic item to give up to a +15 bonus, using the item creation table as a guideline.

Liberty's Edge

StreamOfTheSky wrote:
You forgot +3 for class skill bonus. :)

haha, duh. Not sure how I forgot that. Thanks!

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Cracked Dark Blue Ioun Stone.


StreamOfTheSky wrote:
And what Chris said. You could try to create, with DM approval, a magic item to give up to a +15 bonus, using the item creation table as a guideline.

Old rules (which I have never seen superceded) say up to +30.

Costs was level squared x 100

So +5 costs 2500,
+10 cost 10,000,
+15 costs 22,500,
+20 costs 40,000
+30 costs 90,000.


eirip wrote:
I just looked up snake style. That is just insane.

Insane? it is IMHO underpowered.

As an IMMEDIATE action (meaning you can do it only once in a round and have no swift action next round), you can replace AC with sense motive for 1 attack.

So if you have 2 people with 3 attacks attacking you, on one of those you can use Sense Motive rather than AC. In most cases boosting AC will serve you a LOT better.

If it allowed you to use that as AC for all attacks from one opponent it would be better and still not replace AC compeltely due to multiple opponents.


uncanny aleartness (feat)
oracular intuition (feat, requires oracle dip)
insightful gaze (roll twice take the highest. feat)
suspicious (trait)


Dotted, because I've long thought about playing a Lightman (of the "Lie to Me" series) type of character.
Of course, that would also require a somewhat maxed bluff skill to go along.

That said, I don't have anything you haven't already mentioned.

If we're done listing possibilities, anyone interestend in creating an actual playable build...?

For maxed Sense Motive, I'd probably go Inquisitor (Exorcist for fun, Heretic for Wis to bluff) with Domain Knowledge (Lore Keeper) or Thought (Read Minds), and mix in Oracle of Lore (for Brain Drain and/or Lore Keeper).


Pathfinder Maps Subscriber
Mergy wrote:
Once we think of a Sense Motive masterwork tool, that'll be a +2 circumstance bonus.

Somehow I don't think they'll have a polygraph in Golarion, but if some mad wizard has invented one, then that'll be it.

The Exchange

If the DM doesn't allow making your own you could use the inquisitor's monocle.


The Inexplicable Luck feat, for a +8 once a day.


Your helpful and concerned Cleric friend in the party casts Guidance on you, granting a +1 Competence bonus.


Be an inquisitor, static bonus to sense motive equal to 1/2 their level


Silver-Tonged Haggler. Trade Subdomain. +1/2 level untyped bonus to sense motive 3 + WIS times per day as a free action.

Dark Archive

You are aware that the sense motive is only against one attack per turn right? You still need to pump your AC up if you want a good AC in general.


Seducers bane (wrist item) gives another +5.
You could also get another +8 from a skilled synthesist eidolon.


Ughbash wrote:
eirip wrote:
I just looked up snake style. That is just insane.

Insane? it is IMHO underpowered.

As an IMMEDIATE action (meaning you can do it only once in a round and have no swift action next round), you can replace AC with sense motive for 1 attack.

So if you have 2 people with 3 attacks attacking you, on one of those you can use Sense Motive rather than AC. In most cases boosting AC will serve you a LOT better.

If it allowed you to use that as AC for all attacks from one opponent it would be better and still not replace AC compeltely due to multiple opponents.

Insane? No.

Underpowered? Hell no.

Awesome Feat. Well balanced, useful, and fun (once you get Snake Fang especially).


Thalin wrote:
You are aware that the sense motive is only against one attack per turn right? You still need to pump your AC up if you want a good AC in general.

You are aware that the OP points that out in their first post right? Also, +1 to making a polygraph in Golarion.

Lantern Lodge

Aasimar Inquisitor favored Class bonus is +1/2L on Intimidation, Knowledge and Sense Motive, but only versus outsiders.

Aasimars can also take the Truespeaker racial trait.

Lawbringer Aasimars get +2 racial bonus on Sense Motive.

Aasaimar Wary trait grants +1.

Hellspawn and Beastbrood Tieflings get +2 racial bonus to Sense Motive.

Rangers get Sense Motive bonuses versus favored enemies.

Suspicious Trait grants +1.

Actually, there seems to be alot of traits that grant +1 to Sense Motive.

The Exchange

Unsanctioned Detection (Ultimate Magic)
You can focus your ability to detect evil for more practical or mundane purposes
Prerequisite: Detect evil class feature.
Benefit: As a swift action, you can focus the clarity granted by your detect evil ability to heighten your awareness of other things. This gives you a +10 sacred bonus on Perception and Sense Motive checks for one round. This expends your use of the detect evil class ability for the next 24 hours.

The Exchange

"Practicality: Halflings are grounded in hard work and common sense. Halflings with this racial trait gain a +2 bonus on any one Craft or Profession skill, as well as on Sense Motive checks and saves against illusions. This racial trait replaces the fearless and sure-footed racial traits."

I'm sure some other races dish out equal or better bonuses to Sense Motive, but I just happened to run across this.


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My level 12 master summoner has a +44 to UMD and has that without sacrificing elsewhere, really. At level 20 that will just be an increase of 8 from levels since I already have the magical aptitude and skill focus feats for it, the headband, and circlet. I'd have to improve the headband to get above a +52. But, really, at level 12 he already outclasses demigods and demon lords with that skill.

Likewise, if you get the same feats and such for sense motive I don't see why you couldn't have similar or more with racial bonuses and class features such as the infiltrator inquisitor.

Just be careful to watch for bonus types. Competence bonuses don't stack.


Rynjin wrote:
Ughbash wrote:
eirip wrote:
I just looked up snake style. That is just insane.

Insane? it is IMHO underpowered.

As an IMMEDIATE action (meaning you can do it only once in a round and have no swift action next round), you can replace AC with sense motive for 1 attack.

So if you have 2 people with 3 attacks attacking you, on one of those you can use Sense Motive rather than AC. In most cases boosting AC will serve you a LOT better.

If it allowed you to use that as AC for all attacks from one opponent it would be better and still not replace AC compeltely due to multiple opponents.

Insane? No.

Underpowered? Hell no.

Awesome Feat. Well balanced, useful, and fun (once you get Snake Fang especially).

Except you can't use part of Snake Fang if you already used Snake Style. You still get the AoO, but you can't make the second attack since you already used your Immediate Action. I'm looking at playing a monk for a short adventure and too many things want to use my Swift/Immediate Action. You also can't use an Immediate Action on any round you've already used your Swift Action, so if you spend a Ki point to increase your AC, you can't get the second attack from Snake Fang, or replace your AC with Sense Motive.


Irontruth wrote:


Except you can't use part of Snake Fang if you already used Snake Style. You still get the AoO, but you can't make the second attack since you already used your Immediate Action. I'm looking at playing a monk for a short adventure and too many things want to use my Swift/Immediate Action. You also can't use an Immediate Action on any round you've already used your Swift Action, so if you spend a Ki point to increase your AC, you can't get the second attack from Snake Fang, or replace your AC with Sense Motive.

So?


Is there a way to get massive bonuses to Perform (Oratory) or Perform (Sing)? If so, a Bard could use Versatile Performance in place of Sense Motive.

The idea of the court jester who slings nasty jokes at the knight, who gets so angry he can't hit the jester is not an uncommon one.


Cyberwolf2xs wrote:

Dotted, because I've long thought about playing a Lightman (of the "Lie to Me" series) type of character.

Of course, that would also require a somewhat maxed bluff skill to go along.

That said, I don't have anything you haven't already mentioned.

If we're done listing possibilities, anyone interestend in creating an actual playable build...?

For maxed Sense Motive, I'd probably go Inquisitor (Exorcist for fun, Heretic for Wis to bluff) with Domain Knowledge (Lore Keeper) or Thought (Read Minds), and mix in Oracle of Lore (for Brain Drain and/or Lore Keeper).

Bard 2 for Versatile Performance Sing - Now Bluff and Sense Motive go off Sing Perform (Cha based).

Pump Cha instead of Wis.

Skill Focus to Sing

Circlet of Persuasion for +3 to both.

And whatever random other perks that’d boost your Sing checks.

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