Help brainstorming an Archer build


Ranger till 20. Starting point level ~5.

Goal: Hard hitting mobile archer.
Shot on the run mixed with Vital Strike.

Don't really need a 1-20 build, more so feat ideas and even magic item considerations.

Combat style feats so far:
precise strike (Level 2)
improved precise strike (Level 6)

I am going to be taking the Vital Strikes over rapid fire/multi shot since my goal is to be MOBILE. (AKA no full attack actions)

The way vital strike is worded is that it can be used in conjunction with any "attack action".
An attack action is listed under the options of the standard actions.

I know vital strike will not stack with full attack, and am pretty sure it also will not stack with things that use
a "Standard Action" of their own even when they are effectively performing an attack.

So the problem is, what kind of moves use the attack action? (other then the attack action itself of course.)

Anyway, there may be room to negotiate with the GM so may as well give me some cool standard action attacks.
A good example of one I will probably use is pinpoint targeting. (even if it doesn't stack its still useful as an option)

Another mechanic I want looked at is using stealth checks while "concealed"

Since I will be moving around I am strongly considering wind stance, and using it to make a stealth checks at the end of every round
The problem being that you only gain concealment vs ranged attacks.

Thanks for your help ladies and gents!


The question is? what would you want to acomplish being that mobile with an archer?

Juke wrote:

Goal: Hard hitting mobile archer.

Shot on the run mixed with Vital Strike.

Shot on the Run and Vital Strike do not mix. Shot on the Run requires a full round action. Vital Strike requires an attack action.

Anyway, no matter what you do, Vital Strike is going to suck, and shooting lots of arrows is going to be vastly more powerful than shooting just one. If you need to be mobile, do Mounted Archery, or get a flying carpet or something.

If you really must move under your own power and shoot enemies, then you should probably just be a blaster Sorcerer or something and refluff the spells to be flying out of your bow.

Single attacks just don't cut it at high levels.

All valid, but the character doesn't need to worry about the loss of power by not full attacking. I am not in a group that I have to worry about min maxing. The goal is to make a mobile archer that looks cool jumping across a cavern chasm while flipping in the air and taking a shot at his enemies before landing. Or moving from tree to tree taking a shot between the two points at the optimal angle.

Really looking for something that stacks with Vital Strike.

You should just talk to the GM and see what he thinks about just making Vital Strike apply anytime you take only a single attack (that deals weapon damage).

That BS about the attack action taking a standard action so you can't Vital Strike with any other options is patching a patch, and for a while there made it so you could only sunder once a round as a result.

It was done to make sure people couldn't use a Vital Strike as the first attack in a full attack, or a flurry, or any other multiple attack combination. Charging for one vital strike attack, even with the ragelancepounce build, is bad feat investment, since anything you hit with that dies well before you count the base dice, just from the static bonuses.

IMO all the abilities that use the "attack action" should be compatible (and are not unbalanced) if you replace that with "when making a single attack in a round". Because all it does is cost you a feat for each extra instance of weapon only damage(so no magus spellstrike/vital strikes multiplying the spell part), at your highest bonus.

I have run it for over 2 years being used on any single attack action in a round, including a charge, a ride by attack, and a shot on the run, and it is no more damage than any other build, it just cuts out on the amount of rules lawyering hoops you have to jump thru for other builds to get the same thing, even with a uber-munchkin in the game.

If your looking for a fast hitting archer build I would go with the Rogue Archetypes‎ Sniper and Scout combo.

The ability replaced are not duplicated so the two Archetypes‎ can be together and it's still Rouge class so your sneak die won't suffer.

The Sniper:
Accuracy (Ex)

At 1st level, a sniper halves all range increment penalties when making ranged attacks with a bow or crossbow.

This ability replaces trapfinding.
Deadly Range (Ex)

At 3rd level, a sniper increases the range at which she can apply her sneak attack damage by 10 feet. This range increases by 10 feet for every 3 levels after 3rd.

This ability replaces trap sense.

The Scout:

Scout’s Charge (Ex)

At 4th level, whenever a scout makes a charge, her attack deals sneak attack damage as if the target were flat-footed. Foes with uncanny dodge are immune to this ability.

This ability replaces uncanny dodge.
Skirmisher (Ex)

At 8th level, whenever a scout moves more than 10 feet in a round and makes an attack action, the attack deals sneak attack damage as if the target was flat-footed. If the scout makes more than one attack this turn, this ability only applies to the first attack. Foes with uncanny dodge are immune to this ability.

This ability replaces improved uncanny dodge.

There are magic goggles that allow you to sneak attack at any distance but you still have to be able to see what your shooting at lol.

Combined with STR bow +5 enhancement and sneak die you can hit hard once and still move The extra combat feats you need you can take with rouge talents. Take the rogue talents Minor and Major magic. With Major magic you get to use a 1st level Wiz/Sor spell as a spell like ability twice per day. Take the spell Gravity Bow
Arrows do damage as though one size category larger.

With the minor magic you get a 0 level spell to cast as a spell like ability 3 times per day. I would pick one of the 0 level ray spells because you can add your sneak attack die to the ray. At 8th level your ray is 50 ft.(spells cast are at your character level). Deadly even not armed with you bow lol.

You don't come into your power till about 8th level and there are still some disadvantages to this build but hey you asked lol. I hope this helped you out Juke.

The Vital Strike series of feats works better with a crossbow than with a bow.


Or be a Zen Archer. Once you can start spending a Ki point to have your arrows do unarmed strike damage Vital strike becomes more viable later on.

You also mentioned something about jumping chasms doing flips - that's monk stuff right there!!!

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

Take a creature you can use as a mount as your animal companion and then forget about Vital Striking. You mount can move while you make full attacks. It'll be more effective. Then you can Rapid Shot, Manyshot and all that other good stuff, which is where standard bow-users actually shine.
Vital Strike unfortunately is fairly lame unless you're a Two-Handed Fighter or a cavalier wielding a lance (or both) as there are incredibly few actions it can actually be used with.

Webstore Gninja Minion

Moved thread.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32

I'd consider multicalssing w/Zen archer monk. You can get extra attacks without the feat chain using flurry, extra movement and AC to fit your mobility goals and style feats that might suit you like crane style's 2nd one (which swats away a melee attack) and definately deflect arrows...

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

GM_Solspiral wrote:
I'd consider multicalssing w/Zen archer monk. You can get extra attacks without the feat chain using flurry, extra movement and AC to fit your mobility goals and style feats that might suit you like crane style's 2nd one (which swats away a melee attack) and definately deflect arrows...

It'll probably work for some of what he wants to do, but flurry still only works when you take a Full Attack and is basically incompatible with the rest of his idea.

Maybe look at taking levels of Mobile Fighter?

Dark Archive

You could consider asking your GM for the 3.5 version of Manyshot. As I recall that allowed you to shoot two arrows when you made a single attack only.

Don't multiclass ranger and zen archer. If you go zen archer, you had might as well go all the way, as the bonuses are stellar.

What race?

If you are willing to go with half-orc, you could take the beast rider feat, and take the pteranodon, giving you a flying mount. Combine that with mounted archery and boon companion and you are flying around shooting arrows.



@Peet: that's a solid idea. Best thing about mounted Archery is that with 0 feats invested you can full-attack & use your mounts single move every round with no penalties.

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I second the Zen Archer idea. Nobody beats the monk when it comes to mobility, and nobody says you HAVE to flurry as a monk. Just focus on that vital strike chain and you'll be doing great, nailing people for x2 your base unarmed damage + STR + DA + Enhancement bonus, more when you get improved vital strike and/or greater vital strike.

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