Scout 3.5-to-Pathfinder recon


Homebrew and House Rules


This is my current attempt to recon the 3.5 Scout into Pathfinder.

While the the 3.5 class is playable in Pathfinder (with a few modifications) its general quality when compared to other base Pathfinder classes is lacking. Even when compared to other 3.5 classes, the scout was underwhelming, so I wanted to give the Scout the same level of recon that all of the other base classes underwent in Pathfinder; something more than just a few ranger-like tricks thrown at a rogue.

Since a Scout is a combination Ranger & Rogue, my starting point was to populate the levels using the class features of both of them.
Favored Terrain
"Rogue" talents
Combat progression
Track as a ranger
Disable device as a rogue
Precision damage progression, triggered on movement
Retain the unique 3.5 class features

Below are some specific notes about the build and the class outline.
Please evaluate and comment; I am happy to discuss =)

My Build Comments:

Recon of Trapfinding and Tracking; Trapper's Cunning:
I merged these two features into one for sake of class flavor; I was recon'ing everything, so might as well. Progression right now is every 3rd level, but I am sure a play-test will show that keeping it "half class level, minimum of +1" is not imbalanced.

Recon'ing Skirmish Attack:
While Skirmish in 3.5 was a reasonable combat ability to envision (it's just rules about how to 'stick & move'), the reality was that it was a woefully under-powered and unimpressive mechanic; especially when compared to Sneak Attack. My goal was to ensure that a Scout's precision damage could circumstantially apply an equal number of times in combat as a rogue can apply sneak attack.

Quote:
These are the "walk-up rules" for spring attack without actually having the feat. This precision damage progresses the same as sneak attack and uses all the other sneak attack rules in regard to when a creature is eligible for extra precision damage

Skirmish Attack (ex): When a Scout moves 10' or more in a round prior to attacking with a melee weapon, he can apply precision damage if his attack hits. He cannot use this ability on an opponent who is adjacent to him at the beginning of his turn, and can only be performed in light or no armor.

Quote:
Since a spring attack requires a minimum of 10 feet of movement, it triggers Skirmish as a native part of its functionality

Spring Assault: At 4th level, a scout gains the Spring Attack feat, even if the scout does not meet the requirements.

Quote:
spring attack improves to accommodate a 2nd attack since the scout's BAB allows it

Bounding Assault: At 8th level, as a full-round action, a scout is able to make a second attack during a spring attack (at the normal -5 to the attack roll), whether on the same or different target within the distance limit.

Quote:
spring attack improves again to account for the 3rd attack

Rapid Assault: At 15th level, as a full-round action a scout is able to make a third attack during a spring attack (at the normal -10 to the attack roll), whether on the same or different targets within the distance limit.

Precision damage in Ranged Attacks:
Since ranged attacks don't fit into the recon, I simply used the same rules that sneak attack uses for ranged attacks.

Scout Talents:
I felt creating a list of scout talents is the best way to give the class a rogue-like variability and customization. They allow a Scout to focus on whatever is necessary, whether it be trapfinding, outdoormanship, or even combat. I populated the list with class features from ranger and rogues that I fit the class as well as several newly created ones. As it stands, I tink they give a scout an amazing range of flexibility and customization.
There are a total of 19 talents to chose from (and there are some new ones still cooking on the burners).
The class only gains a total of 8 talents by level 20; two are normal scout talents and six advanced scout talents.
A Scout won't gain more then two Favored Terrain unless they are taken as an advanced talent.
The Uncanny Tracker and Unrelenting Tracker advanced talents are recon'd versions of the Quarry and Improved Quarry ranger class features, since a scout does not have Favored Enemy.

The level 20 combat feature, Master Skirmisher:
Since the scout does gain Blindsight at level 20, I didn't feel that the level-20 combat feature should be as murderously brutal as the ranger's and rogue's "fort or die" ability. It does, however, still needs to be a significant combat advantage for the scout. Keeping with the variability of the class, I created a feature that has many different options for a player to chose from, depending on the situation.

Specifically Missing, Dodge bonus to AC while using Skirmish Attack:
I specifically left this out because if few reasons:
Since the class an amped-up version of spring attack, this alone offers a fair amount of protection. Second, I always felt that the alternating of a dodge bonus and precision damage in 3.5 hurt the class overall more then it added. With that said, I recognize that it is a core function to the class so I created the Evasive Bound scout talent:

Evasive Bound (ex): When performing a skirmish attack, a scout is able to grant himself a +1 dodge bonus to AC and a +1 circumstantial bonus to his reflex for each skirmish die he sacrifices from his damage. The scout may only sacrifice up to half of his available skirmish dice in this way. This bonus last until the beginning of his next turn. Prereq's, +2d6 skirmish

Class Information:

Hit Die & Skills: d8. 8 + Int skill points per level. The follow are class skills for a scout: Acrobatics, Climb, Craft (any), Disable Device, Handle Animal, Knowledge (dungeoneering), Knowledge (geography), Knowledge (nature), Linguistics, Perception, Profession (any), Ride, Sense Motive, Spellcraft, Stealth, Survival, Swim, UMD

Proficiencies: A scout is proficient with all simple weapons, hand axe, shot bow, and his choice of 2 martial weapons; limited to light and one-handed. A scout is proficient with light armor and light shields.

BAB- Good
Fort- Good
Reflex- Good
Will- Poor

Features
1 - Skirmish Attack +1d6. Trapper’s Cunning +1. Skirmish
2 - Uncanny Dodge. 1st Favored Terrain
3 - Skirmish Attack +2d6. Fast Movement +10'. Trapper’s Cunning +2
4 - Spring Assault. Scout Talent.
5 - Skirmish Attack +3d6. Evasion
6 - Trapper’s Cunning +3. Scout Talent
7 - Skirmish Attack +4d6
8 - Bounding Assault. 2nd Favored Terrain
9 - Skirmish Attack +5d6. Trapper’s Cunning +4
10- Blindsense 30'. Advanced Scout Talent
11- Skirmish Attack +6d6. Fast Movement +20'
12- Advanced Scout Talent. Trapper’s Cunning +5
13- Skirmish Attack +7d6
14- Advanced Scout Talent
15- Skirmish Attack +8d6. Rapid Assault.. Trapper’s Cunning +6
16- Advanced Scout Talent
17- Skirmish Attack +9d6
18- Advanced Scout Talent. Trapper’s Cunning +7
19- Skirmish Attack +10d6
20- Blindsight 30'. Advanced Scout Talent. Master Skirmisher

Skirmish Attack (ex): When a Scout moves more then 10' in a round prior to attacking with a melee weapon, he can apply precision damage if his attack hits. He cannot use this ability on an opponent who is adjacent to him at the beginning of his turn, and can only be performed in light or no armor. This precision damage is +1d6 starting at level 1 and increases by one extra 1d6 for every odd scout level. This ability can only be used while wearing light or no armor.
This extra precision damage can only be applied to living creatures with discernible anatomies- undead, constructs, oozes, plants, and incorporeal creatures lack vital areas to attack. Any creature that is immune to critical hits is not vulnerable to skirmish damage. The scout must be able to see the target well enough to pick out a vital spot and must be able to reach such a spot. A scout cannot skirmish attack while striking a creature with concealment or striking the limbs of a creature whose vitals are beyond reach.
For ranged attacks, a scout can apply this precision damage to an opponent within 30 feet who is flat-footed or would be denied their Dexterity bonus to AC.

Trapper’s Cunning: A scout is granted a +1 competence bonus to all survival checks to tracking, perception check to find traps and disable device checks. At 3rd level and every 3 levels thereafter, the scout gains an additional +1 to this bonus.
The scout can use the Perception skill to locate traps when the task has a Difficulty Class higher than 20. Finding a non-magical trap has a DC of at least 20, or higher if it is well hidden. Finding a magic trap has a DC of 25 + the level of the spell used to create it. The scout can use the Disable Device skill to disarm magic traps. A magic trap generally has a DC of 25 + the level of the spell used to create it. If the scout beats a trap’s DC by 10 or more with a Disable Device check can study a trap, figure out how it works, and bypass it (with her party) without disarming it.

Favored Terrain: A scout may select a type of terrain from the Favored Terrains table. He gains a +2 bonus on initiative checks and Knowledge (geography), Perception, Stealth, and Survival skill checks when he is in this terrain. A scout traveling through his favored terrain normally leaves no trail and cannot be tracked (though he may leave a trail if he so chooses).
If a scout chooses additional favored terrains, the skill bonus and initiative bonus in any one favored terrain (including the one just selected, if so desired), increases by +2. If a specific terrain falls into more than one category of favored terrain, the scout’s bonuses do not stack; he simply uses whichever bonus is higher.

Uncanny Dodge (ex): At 2nd level, a scout can react to danger before her senses would normally allow her to do so. She retains her Dexterity bonus to AC (if any) even if she is caught flat-footed or struck by an invisible attacker. However, she still loses her Dexterity bonus to AC if immobilized.

Scout Talents: At 4th and 6th level, a scout may choose a Scout Talent. Starting 10th level (and every even level thereafter) a scout may chose an advanced scout talent instead.

  • Camouflage (ex): A scout can use the Stealth skill to hide in any of his favored terrains, even if the terrain doesn't grant cover or concealment.
  • Evasive Bound (ex): When performing a spring attack, a scout is able to grant himself a +1 dodge bonus to AC and a +1 circumstantial bonus to his reflex for each skirmish die he sacrifices from his damage. The scout may sacrifice up to half of his skirmish dice in this way.
  • Fast Stealth (ex): The scout takes no negatives to stealth checks while moving at full speed.
  • Powerful Skirmish: The scout can take a -2 on his attack roles to count Skirmish damage rolls of 1s as 2s instead.
  • Quick Disable (ex): It only takes only half the normal time to disable a trap when using Disable Device, minimum of 1 round.
  • Scout Crawl (ex): While prone, a scout with this ability can move at half speed. This movement provokes attacks of opportunity as normal. A scout with this talent can take a 5-foot step while crawling.
  • Scout’s Expertise: The scout gains a skill focus feat or a combat feat. He still must meet the normal requirements of the feat to take this talent.
  • Swift Tracker (ex): The scout can move at his normal speed while using Survival to follow tracks without taking the normal –5 penalty. He takes only a –10 penalty (instead of the normal –20) when moving at up to twice normal speed while tracking.
  • Trap Spotter (ex): Whenever a scout comes within 10 feet of a trap, she receives an immediate Perception skill check to notice the trap. This check should be made in secret by the GM.

    Advanced Scout Talents:

  • Deadly Skirmish: The scout no longer suffers a -2 to attack rolls for using Powerful Skirmish. If he does take a -2 during n attack, he can count all Skirmish damage rolls of 1s and 2s as 3s instead. A scout must have the Powerful Skirmish talent prior to choosing this talent.
  • Favored Terrain: The scout gains another Favored Terrain.
  • Hide in Plain Sight (ex): While in any of his favored terrains, a scout can use the Stealth skill even while being observed. A scout must have the Camouflage talent prior to choosing this talent.
  • Improved Evasion: The scout gains Improves Evasion, as the rogue talent.
  • Opportunistic: Once per round, the scout can make an attack of opportunity against an opponent who has just been struck for damage in melee by another character. I the attack hits he is able to apply his Skirmish damage to this attack. This attack counts as an attack of opportunity for that round. Even a scout with the Combat Reflexes feat can’t use the opportunist ability more than once per round.
  • Tactical Assault (ex): In lieu of a normal melee attack during a spring attack, the scout can instead perform a combat maneuver; trip, bullrush, etc.
  • Trailblazer (ex): The scout’s knowledge of terrain allows them to lead his comrades through the most difficult terrain with ease. When he is in his favored terrain, he is able to sacrifice his bonuses granted while in his favored terrain to grant Flawless Stride to all allies within 30 feet.
  • Uncanny Tracker: The scout is able to take 10 on his survival checks while tracking in his favored terrain when moving up to his normal speed and when the tracks are no older than 24 hours. A scout must have the Swift Tracker talent prior to choosing this talent.
  • Unrelenting Tracker: The scout is able to take 20 on his survival checks while tracking in his favored terrain when moving up to his full speed and when the tracks are no older than 4 hours. A scout must have the Swift Tracker and Uncanny Tracker talents prior to choosing this talent.
  • Vexing Assault (ex): Any foe a scout performs a spring attack on is considered flanked for the remainder of the round.

    Fast Movement (ex): At 3rd level, a scout gains +10 feet to his base movement. At 8th level, this increases to +20 feet.

    Spring Assault: At 4th level, a scout gains the Spring Attack feat, even if the scout does not meet the requirements.

    Evasion (ex): At 5th level, a scout can avoid even magical and unusual attacks with great agility. If he makes a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save, he instead takes no damage. Evasion can be used only if the scout is wearing light armor or no armor. A helpless scout does not gain the benefit of evasion.

    Flawless Stride (ex): At 6th level, a scout takes no movement penalty when moving through rough or difficult terrain. Thorns, briars, and overgrown areas that are enchanted or magically manipulated to impede motion, however, still affect him. This does not prevent damage from exposure to hazardous terrains (such as lava).

    Bounding Assault: At 8th level, as a full-round action, a scout is able to make a second attack during a spring attack (at the normal -5 to the attack roll), whether on the same or different target within the distance limit.

    Blindsense (ex): At 10th level, the scout gains blindsense out to 30 feet.

    Rapid Assault: At 15th level, as a full-round action a scout is able to make a third attack during a spring attack (at the normal -10 to the attack roll), whether on the same or different targets within the distance limit.

    Free Movement (su): At 18th level, a scout is immune to any effect, spell-like ability, or spell that would hinder his movement. This is an effect similar to the Freedom of Movement spell, except that he is still susceptible to standard combat maneuvers (grapple, trip, etc).

    Blindsight (ex): At 20th level, the scout’s gains blindsight out to 30 feet.

    Master Skirmisher: At 20th level, a scout becomes an efficient master of mobile lethality. A scout may perform one of the below actions. The chosen effect lasts for the entire encounter. He is able to perform a number of maneuvers per day equal to his Wisdom modifier.

  • Perfect Strike (ex): When performing a skirmish attack, the weapon's critical threat stack increases by one and critical threats are automatically confirmed
  • Change-Up (ex): If a scout misses while performing a skirmish attack, he is able to perform another attack against that opponent at a +5 to the attack roll. If against an opponent who is already threatened by an adjacent ally, the scout can forgo this attack to allow one ally to take an attack of opportunity or perform an immediate combat maneuver.
  • Lightning Assault (ex): A scout is able to take a -2 to all attack during the round to make a 4th attack during a spring attack. This attack is taken after the 3rd spring attack at his highest attack bonus.
  • Perfect Skirmish (ex): A scout is able to add +2 damage per skirmish dice to all attacks.
  • No Life, No Problem (su): A scout is able to apply half his skirmish damage to creatures normally immune to precision damage. This ability does not give the ability to score critical damage.


  • I would add Mobility as a class feature, or a scaling bonus to AC vs attacks of opportunity.

    Sovereign Court

    I played a scout quite a bit in a 3.5 home game and found out it excelled with the 3.5 version of multishot. You could move more than 10 feet, fire a single shot and get multiple arrows plus your skirmish bonus. Add in Shot on the Run and you could continually do that from cover.


    Ciaran Barnes wrote:
    I would add Mobility as a class feature, or a scaling bonus to AC vs attacks of opportunity.

    In an earlier version I did give them dodge, mobility, and an increasing dodge bonus; originally I created a list of bonus feats mirroring the 3.5 list.

    The reason it took them out was that the feature were getting a bit too crammed together; how can I justify a class getting 3 bonus feats within the first 5 levels?

    As far as the increasing dodge bonus, I was on the fence to have a full 10d6 precision damage as well an increasing dodge bonus, especially with being able to take combat feats as talents and in-part why I created "Evasive Bound".


    The Human Diversion wrote:
    I played a scout quite a bit in a 3.5 home game and found out it excelled with the 3.5 version of multishot. You could move more than 10 feet, fire a single shot and get multiple arrows plus your skirmish bonus. Add in Shot on the Run and you could continually do that from cover.

    Have had a few good scout builds too, but from a perspective of being able to use a class feature, a scout has far less 'opportunities' to be able to apply extra damage; as an inherent flaw in the features design was forcing it to become level w/ the stock features of other classes.

    My main goal was to ensure that damage application opportunities would scale with a rogue and ranger.

    FYI- my Sniper archetype will address mobile ranged attackz as well as long-ranged precision damage, so more to come =)


    Skirmish was interesting, but for archery it just didn't compare to being able to full attack. If you're really interested, there's the Vital Strike feats that work with it.

    I had a player who wanted to play a scout so I just took away his spells and animal companion, gave him trapfinding and skirmish as written. Worked OK.


    ~Pup wrote:
    Ciaran Barnes wrote:
    I would add Mobility as a class feature, or a scaling bonus to AC vs attacks of opportunity.

    In an earlier version I did give them dodge, mobility, and an increasing dodge bonus; originally I created a list of bonus feats mirroring the 3.5 list.

    The reason it took them out was that the feature were getting a bit too crammed together; how can I justify a class getting 3 bonus feats within the first 5 levels?

    As far as the increasing dodge bonus, I was on the fence to have a full 10d6 precision damage as well an increasing dodge bonus, especially with being able to take combat feats as talents and in-part why I created "Evasive Bound".

    I get it. But, some other classes so get feats crammed into the early levels, such as monk and ranger, so its not unheard of. I suggested it because a character so reliant on moving every turn is going to provoke more often. You could add take do something simple like +1 to AC vs AoOs for every three levels, essentially taking the place of Trap Sense.

    Liberty's Edge

    You might also take a look at the Spell-less Ranger. One of the design goals of the class was to capture much of the scout's flavor.

    New Paths #1: The Expanded Spell-less Ranger


    Ciaran Barnes wrote:
    ~Pup wrote:
    Ciaran Barnes wrote:
    I would add Mobility as a class feature, or a scaling bonus to AC vs attacks of opportunity.

    In an earlier version I did give them dodge, mobility, and an increasing dodge bonus; originally I created a list of bonus feats mirroring the 3.5 list.

    The reason it took them out was that the feature were getting a bit too crammed together; how can I justify a class getting 3 bonus feats within the first 5 levels?

    As far as the increasing dodge bonus, I was on the fence to have a full 10d6 precision damage as well an increasing dodge bonus, especially with being able to take combat feats as talents and in-part why I created "Evasive Bound".

    I get it. But, some other classes so get feats crammed into the early levels, such as monk and ranger, so its not unheard of. I suggested it because a character so reliant on moving every turn is going to provoke more often. You could add take do something simple like +1 to AC vs AoOs for every three levels, essentially taking the place of Trap Sense.

    I definitely had a +dodge progression and I like the idea, but I was not sure where to fit it in with this version.

    In version 1, the scout recv'd a +1 to their dodge bonus from Mobility they got Spring Assault, Bounding Assault, Rapid Assault, and (at the time) the level 20 "assault" talent, giving them a total of +8 at level 20. I scraped it because I couldn't keep the progression of it at an even pace... you'll notice that between level 4 (the soonest I would allow for any class get spring attack for free), level 9 (when they get their 2nd spring attack), and level 15 (when they get their 3rd spring attack), there isn't a way to make it an even spacing.
    .. well that isn't true, I was able to get an even spacing, but not without moving Bounding Assault and Rapid Assault down one level each; something I toyed with, but in the end, wasn't willing to sacrifice.

    This build is a version of Version 2. My plan for Revision 3 is to recon/integrate Favored Terrain and other class features to be more seemless and cohesive (and for a way to re-intergrate Battle Fortitude), maybe I can see a way to re-establish it.


    Marc Radle wrote:

    You might also take a look at the Spell-less Ranger. One of the design goals of the class was to capture much of the scout's flavor.

    New Paths #1: The Expanded Spell-less Ranger

    I did pull from this. When I was in version one, I pulled that up as well as many other others items; the 'scout' rogue variant, and the 'ranger tricks' variant as examples, as a means of judging the sorts of thing a Scout should be able to do.

    Marc, based on what I have here, what do you think in the spell-less Ranger should be incorporated?


    bump, shameless

    =)


    I have a player that just lost a dwarven Archery based ranger in a fight with an Underworld Dragon. I saw your scout write up and forwarded it to him. He wants to give it a shot, but wants to stay archery based. I saw your were working up a sniper archetype. I would be curious to see what you had wrote up.


    Aristin76 wrote:
    I have a player that just lost a dwarven Archery based ranger in a fight with an Underworld Dragon. I saw your scout write up and forwarded it to him. He wants to give it a shot, but wants to stay archery based. I saw your were working up a sniper archetype. I would be curious to see what you had wrote up.

    As of now, I have way more feature ideas than places for them, so I am not sure where to put them. I am also in the process of making sure the build fits logically with the available ranged combat feats.

    I have 5 features to replace, 1 scout talent and 2 advances talents to populate.

    The only thing I have truly nailed down is the replacement for Skirmish Attack
    Replace the +10 foot base movement increase to +10 feet to ranged increment.
    Gain longbow weapon proficiency, but lose shield prof and can only chose one martial weapon prof, limited to light melee weapons.

    Sniper Precision, replaces Skirmish Attack at level 1:

    When a sniper attacks an opponent who is within 30 feet with a ranged attack and they are already being threatened by an ally, the sniper can apply precision dice to his damage roll if the attack hits. This precision damage is +1d6 starting at level 1 and increases by one extra 1d6 for every odd scout level.
    For melee attacks, a sniper can only add this damage against opponents who are, helpless, flat-footed, or denied their Dexterity bonus to AC.

    Sniper Shot, replaces Spring Assault at level 4:

    As a full-round action a scout is able to make one ranged attack (a sniper shot) and apply precision damage at any range.

    Here are some of the other ideas. The names of the abilities are not finalized yet, so I have version tags on them. I have no idea what will be talents or replacement of features.
    Lastly, I have no idea what to put in the level 20 "Master Sniper" ability. I will think about it today though =)

    In-progress abilities, beta:

    Hawkeye v1: A sniper's standard precision range is increased from 30 feet to half his weapon's first range increment (minimum of 60 feet).

    Hawkeye v2: A sniper's standard precision range is increased from 30 feet to half his weapon's first range increment (minimum of 60 feet). Critical Threat count is increased by one.

    Feel the Shot v1: A sniper can add his Wisdom and Dexterity modifier to all ranged attack rolls.

    Feel the Shot v2: A sniper can add his scout class level as extra precision damage when performing Sniper Shot.

    Distracting Shot: Whenever a sniper hits a foe with a ranged attack, the foe is considered threatened and flanked relative to his allies. This includes other ranged attacks made by allies, so as long as their attack is from a different direction than the sniper's.
    (yes, this means a sniper can 'flank' an opponent with ranged AND allow their rogue ally to sneak attack)

    Call the Shot v1: Any critical threat with a Sniper Shot is automatically confirmed.

    Call the Shot v2: Any critical threat with a Sniper Shot is automatically confirmed. Critical Threat count is increased by one.

    Call the Shot v3: A sniper can add twice his scout class level as extra precision damage when performing Sniper Shot.

    In Defilade v1: No negative to hide checks after attacking.

    In Defilade v2: No negative to hide checks after attacking. Sniper Shot can now be done as a Standard Action. If Sniper Shot is done as a full-round action, it will ignore armor, shield, and natural armor AC.

    What is Critical Threat count?:

    This is our table rule in regard to stacking 'keen' effects.
    We only allow one magical, one skill-based, and one natural keen-increasing effect.. anything beyond that are onyl gained thru class features (such as the Fighter level 20 ability).

    Keen effect stacking alternates between critical threat range increase, then critical damage multiplier.
    For example, a normal long bow is x3.
    ..with Keen spell on it: 19-20, x3
    ..with Keen and Imp Critical feat: 19-20, x4
    ..with Keen, Imp Critical feat, and one valid 'count': 18-20, x4
    ..with Keen, Imp Critical feat, and two valid 'count': 18-20, x5
    ..with Keen, Imp Critical feat, and three valid 'count': 17-20, x5
    etc, etc, etc...

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