Fixing the summoner in one easy step


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Shadow Lodge

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Okay, so I should probably preface this by saying that I love summoners. Conceptually fantastic, fun to build, and fun to play. But it's really no secret that they are exhibit 1A in the case for power creep in PF. In the last home game that I participated in, three players showed up with summoners.

Three. In a party of six.

And honestly, who could blame a player for being drawn to summoners? Double the HP. Double the actions. Quadruple the attacks. Flanking bonuses at will. Amazing spellcasting potential. They even get every knowledge skill for some damn reason.

Bearing that in mind, I think I've stumbled on to the simplest and most profoundly fair fix for summoners: make the eidolon only available a certain number of rounds per day. Shall we say, CHA + 3 rounds per day, with an extra 2 rounds each level? And just make it a full round to summon it. Bam.

I don't know if anyone has ever proposed this on the here, but mechanically, it only seems fair. Barbarians can't rage for 16 hours straight, bards can't perform for 16 hours straight, but the signature ability of the summoner is essentially limitless. (Even in a rounds/day format, your basic eidolon beats the pants off of those other two abilities.)

It would be an enormous improvement thematically too. I mean, they're called summoners, but how often do they actually SUMMON?? Master summoner notwithstanding, every summoner I see just has the damn thing hanging out all the time. Far cooler I think, would be the mage that's forced to conjure his personal combat avatar in the midst of an intense battle, rather than the guy who struts around all day with a bizarre extra party member.

Anyone have an opinion? Gimme yo thoughts.

Shadow Lodge

...I guess this means everyone agrees with me ;)


ElectricMatthew wrote:
...I guess this means everyone agrees with me ;)

+1

(Admittedly, my lack of commenting is because I don't think I'm fairly objective in regards to the class)


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I don't see the point of summoners without, or extremely limited uses of, Eidolons. Eidolons are the class feature, not the summons. Take eidolons away and you're just a crummy wizard that gets free summon monsters. I'd take a wizard or cleric over a summoner without the Eidolon.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber

Cubic Prism:

Do barbarians have rage? Do bards have Bardic Perfomance? If your answer was yes, then that`s exactly how Electric Maththew is suggesting to fx the summoner - by limiting its Eidolon uses.

If you answer was no. Then, i`m sorry, you don`t know well enough D20 system.

I played with bards and barbarians and never bothered about the rage usages or bard perfomances, it is just enough.

Now, if a summoner actually summon it`s Eidolon, the class become really good (thematically speaking) and balanced! The better - it makes way to plan new classes based on another arcane schools.


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It's actually really hard to make an eidolon with decent hit points and AC. It's very easy to make an eidolon a "glass cannon", and I think most of the complaining comes from GMs who don't know what to expect from glass cannons.

The synthesist thing is a bit off. I think maybe a limitation on that is in order.

But the summoner I play is a mounted build, and honestly he dominated levels 2-4 but quickly fell behind because of lousy HP and AC. I erroneously believed he could wear barding during his dominant levels too.

The way evolutions work out, it is trivially easy to beef up offense on the eidolon, but defense comes at too steep a price. As such, I've started think about when, not if, my eidolon runs out of HP.

It definitely looks scarier on paper than it actually is.


Sounds good and fair to me well done sir

Scarab Sages

Darklord Morius wrote:

Cubic Prism:

Do barbarians have rage? Do bards have Bardic Perfomance? If your answer was yes, then that`s exactly how Electric Maththew is suggesting to fx the summoner - by limiting its Eidolon uses.

Do barbarians do massive damage by hitting things with their swords, without rage?

Yes.

Are you limiting the number of rounds/day they can swings their swords?

No.

With out the eidolon, the summoner is a bard without the skill points or bard class features.

Darklord Morius wrote:
If you answer was no. Then, i`m sorry, you don`t know well enough D20 system.

Or I have enough system mastery to build characters of other classes that are equal to or better than a summoner and his eidolon.

Shadow Lodge

Cubic Prism wrote:
I don't see the point of summoners without, or extremely limited uses of, Eidolons. Eidolons are the class feature, not the summons. Take eidolons away and you're just a crummy wizard that gets free summon monsters. I'd take a wizard or cleric over a summoner without the Eidolon.

I definitely don't want to take eidolons out of the picture, because they're obviously the reason the class is fun to build. I'm just hoping to rebalance them a bit, especially at low levels.

I think it'd be nice if a summoner had to be a little more discriminating in when he actually activates his eidolon, again, like a low level barbarian who isn't sure how many encounters he'll face that day.

Plus, it'll give their SLA more of a purpose (instead of just being plan B).

Scarab Sages

ElectricMatthew wrote:
Cubic Prism wrote:
I don't see the point of summoners without, or extremely limited uses of, Eidolons. Eidolons are the class feature, not the summons. Take eidolons away and you're just a crummy wizard that gets free summon monsters. I'd take a wizard or cleric over a summoner without the Eidolon.
I definitely don't want to take eidolons out of the picture, because they're obviously the reason the class is fun to build. I'm just hoping to rebalance them a bit, especially at low levels.

Even at low level, a barbarian is going to have double the DPR an eidolon can manage.

Shadow Lodge

Artanthos wrote:

Or I have enough system mastery to build characters of other classes that are equal to or better than a summoner and his eidolon.

Fair 'nuff. But what happens when you apply that same system mastery to the summoner?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber

My question was not "do barbarians swing their sword" it was if they rage or not. Someone who says they don`t rage clearly know nothing of the system. Please, read the post first, then answer.

Second you are comparing a full class (barbarian) with a class feature (Eidolon) and point out what a full class is better than a single class feature and what he is worst.


ElectricMatthew wrote:
Anyone have an opinion? Gimme yo thoughts.

Terrible fix, I'm always against x/day abilities, so I may be a bit biased but here's my logic. The thing is the barbarian rages as a free action and quickly is able to rage effectively every round of every combat. Summoning as a full round action that then last 3+(Charisma+levelx2) does eventually reach a point its all day, but really your just forcing him to use his summon monster SLA more often to remain action economy effective. The eidolon is effectively a build your own summon monster that the summoner always has with him as a buddy. Even if you push it to a full round to use his normal SLA you've essentially forced him to waste at least one round every combat summoning something in; Which is a little on the boring side, no? You've also taken away a lot of the potential for the eidolon to be a friend to the summoner, or even as a roleplay prop, which I think is far worse than anything.

Shadow Lodge

It seems like a good fix, but you should let them either 1.)Auto-learn summon spells like oracles, 2.)Have a Bard spell progression as far as spells per day, C.)let them use the eidolon class ability as a free action or the summon monster Spell-Like abilities as a standard action, or at the very least D.)Give a feat that is like extra performance or rage that gives an extra 6 uses of the eidolon ability. Or you could give them a lower HD and let the eidolon remain. I mean, Paizo gave Wizards d6 HD and then, at higher levels, the ability to bend reality at their will. Also, if we are comparing eidolon to bardic performance or rage, shouldn't it be 4+Cha mod rounds?


Darklord Morius wrote:

Cubic Prism:

Do barbarians have rage? Do bards have Bardic Perfomance? If your answer was yes, then that`s exactly how Electric Maththew is suggesting to fx the summoner - by limiting its Eidolon uses.

If you answer was no. Then, i`m sorry, you don`t know well enough D20 system.

I played with bards and barbarians and never bothered about the rage usages or bard perfomances, it is just enough.

Now, if a summoner actually summon it`s Eidolon, the class become really good (thematically speaking) and balanced! The better - it makes way to plan new classes based on another arcane schools.

Summoning eidolons lets you apply feats that modify summoned creatures which makes an already extremely powerful class feature more powerful. I don't think that would be in the vein of what he's proposing. Though, as you said thematically it's better.

I think before people start limiting class features there should be some thought put into what specifically about it and the class itself, is not working as one feels it should. Is it the abuse the customization of the eidolons allow (Kali builds)? Or early access to certain spells that when applied to the eidolon increase it's combat effectiveness past the point of comfort? Action economy, archtypes, BAB, HP? Was it one campaign with 3 summoners and the original poster as a character that was crummy in comparison?

If the original poster has thought a great deal about the subject and considered these and other points to get to his idea of cha mod +3 rounds of eidolon a day, then he should explain how he got there so people reading can be on the same page and offer some constructive input.

Shadow Lodge

MrSin wrote:
ElectricMatthew wrote:
Anyone have an opinion? Gimme yo thoughts.
Terrible fix, I'm always against x/day abilities, so I may be a bit biased but here's my logic. The thing is the barbarian rages as a free action and quickly is able to rage effectively every round of every combat. Summoning as a full round action that then last 3+(Charisma+levelx2) does eventually reach a point its all day, but really your just forcing him to use his summon monster SLA more often to remain action economy effective. The eidolon is effectively a build your own summon monster that the summoner always has with him as a buddy. Even if you push it to a full round to use his normal SLA you've essentially forced him to waste at least one round every combat summoning something in; Which is a little on the boring side, no? You've also taken away a lot of the potential for the eidolon to be a friend to the summoner, or even as a roleplay prop, which I think is far worse than anything.

Awesome reply. Here's my thinking on this. I can't help but compare the eidolon to other types of followers (essentially animal companions, familiars, and to some extent, cohorts). One of my frustrations is just how embarrassingly superior the eidolon is to other 'pet' abilities.

1.) You get to build the thing to your exact specifications, feats included.

2.) You get perfect telepathic communication and control over it from level one, unlike the wizard who has level into the ability to speak with his hawk, or the druid that has invest points into handle animal.

3.) There is essentially zero risk to using it in combat. It can't actually die, man.

This really isn't to say that I want to change THESE things, but I think these advantages are all relatively ameliorated in rounds/day situation.

Now using it in RP? Well, I suppose you got me on that one. But I honestly don't think it has to diminish either character. You can still put the same amount of love into their collective backstory, it just wouldn't be considered a party member.


ElectricMatthew wrote:
1.) You get to build the thing to your exact specifications, feats included.

I have no problem with this. Customization is a plus in life! Especially if its a creative.

ElectricMatthew wrote:
2.) You get perfect telepathic communication and control over it from level one, unlike the wizard who has level into the ability to speak with his hawk, or the druid that has invest points into handle animal.

I don't have a problem with that. Rolling handle animal sucks. My tables have always let you just control the thing as another player unless you ask it to do something an animal normally wanted to do.

ElectricMatthew wrote:
3.) There is essentially zero risk to using it in combat. It can't actually die, man.

Well it can die, but its death is a slap on the wrist. A day without your summoned creature. Make it a week and the player won't let the thing die in my experience.

ElectricMatthew wrote:
Now using it in RP? Well, I suppose you got me on that one. But I honestly don't think it has to diminish either character. You can still put the same amount of love into their collective backstory, it just wouldn't be considered a party member.

Kind of, there's a difference between that imaginary friend you can keep with you at all times or teach you things than the one you can have for about four rounds. You definitely can't recreate Bartimaeus or any of the creatures from that trilogy.

Most players I know treat them like an expendable meatshield though, and I know that gets to just about everyone who DM's for me.

Scarab Sages

ElectricMatthew wrote:
Artanthos wrote:

Or I have enough system mastery to build characters of other classes that are equal to or better than a summoner and his eidolon.

Fair 'nuff. But what happens when you apply that same system mastery to the summoner?

They come out close to even.

The summoner just requires less system mastery if your only goal is DPR.

Scarab Sages

ArmouredMonk13 wrote:
It seems like a good fix, but you should let them either 1.)Auto-learn summon spells like oracles, 2.)Have a Bard spell progression as far as spells per day, C.)let them use the eidolon class ability as a free action or the summon monster Spell-Like abilities as a standard action, or at the very least D.)Give a feat that is like extra performance or rage that gives an extra 6 uses of the eidolon ability. Or you could give them a lower HD and let the eidolon remain. I mean, Paizo gave Wizards d6 HD and then, at higher levels, the ability to bend reality at their will. Also, if we are comparing eidolon to bardic performance or rage, shouldn't it be 4+Cha mod rounds?

With extra rounds per day based on level.

Activated as a swift or free action.


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Throwing gamebalance to the wind... here is my fix.

At all times, the eidolon is an adorable chebi pet that functions as a wizards familiar but for 4 + Cha modifier rounds per day (+2 rounds per level, with an optional feat to increase this duration by an additional 6 rounds each time it is taken) the summoned pet transforms (as a free action) into the standard eidolon with all the trimmings.

Summoner gets a helpful companion that still has the option to go combat ready at a moments notice, but the energies required to maintain that combat form is taxing and can only be used for so long each day before the summoned creature must rest.

Just a thought while I surf piazo in my pajamas at noon.

Shadow Lodge

Cubic Prism wrote:


If the original poster has thought a great deal about the subject and considered these and other points to get to his idea of cha mod +3 rounds of eidolon a day, then he should explain how he got there so people reading can be on the same page and offer some constructive input.

The rationale isn't really all that arcane. The eidolon is essentially a combat ability, right? (except in the insanely rare case where somebody builds it to scout or something, I guess)

In that respect, I think it should level in a fashion similar to other combat abilities, i.e. barbarian rage, cleric channeling, etc. With that in mind, the only question for me is whether to make the static bonus to CHA 3 or 4. I opted for 3 because it encourages more of an investment in charisma.

IMHO, as it stands, you can't even call a summoner SAD, because they don't actually require any particular ability score to function. While the monk gets off the bus with four requisite abilities, assigning ability scores on a summoner is freakin' luxury. Don't plan to cast spells with a saving throw? Eh, 12 CHA oughta do it... I don't think it's too much to ask that at least ONE score that is compulsory.

Shadow Lodge

You could make the eidolon have familiar stats as a familiar determined from base (Like a snake for serpentine eidolon, monkey for biped, or cat for quadruped, etc.) and fluff it as the familiar looks just like a smaller version of the eidolon, and acts as a conduit for the summoner's summoning power. To make the eidolon more precious to the summoner than a day without eidolon, make it the summoner have to make concentration checks to cast like a wizard without a familiar, and say that the level of summon monster is reduced by 1, to a minimum of summon minor monster.

Also, the no need for charisma, well if you plan on casting all spells, you need a 16 to cast all of your spells, and conjuration has a lot of SoS spells that DON'T allow for SR. And there is that Summon Monster SLA that is based off of CHA.

Shadow Lodge

Also, I don't know if you guys have encountered this... but I've noticed that more and more often, my players are putting more thought into their eidolons than their actual characters.

It drives me nuts. They basically play as if the eidolon is the PC, and the summoner is some silent, vestigial buff-bot.

Again, maybe this is just isolated to the jokers I play with, but rounds/day makes all of that insanity disappear.

Scarab Sages

ElectricMatthew wrote:

Also, I don't know if you guys have encountered this... but I've noticed that more and more often, my players are putting more thought into their eidolons than their actual characters.

It drives me nuts. They basically play as if the eidolon is the PC, and the summoner is some silent, vestigial buff-bot.

Again, maybe this is just isolated to the jokers I play with, but rounds/day makes all of that insanity disappear.

No more so than rounds/day makes the barbarians insane damage disappear.

The fighters weapon training and weapon specialization (both combat abilities) are available 24/7. Eventually, they allow the fighter to surpass even the barbarian in DPR.

Shadow Lodge

ArmouredMonk13 wrote:
Also, the no need for charisma, well if you plan on casting all spells, you need a 16 to cast all of your spells, and conjuration has a lot of SoS spells that DON'T allow for SR. And there is that Summon Monster SLA that is based off of CHA.

Granted. Most of my play lately has been PFS, so I guess I end up judging everything in the low level paradigm, where high level spells just don't happen. Obviously, if you expect to play up, you need to be able to cast something beyond second level.

I'm guilty of it too. My PFS summoner has 18 STR and 12 CHA, because it'll be a damn long time before I need to cast a 3rd level spell (and by then I'll be able to afford a headband).

Concerning the SLA, how often do most summoners really need it? In my experience, players seem to focus almost exclusively on one ability or the other (eidolon v summoning). So in lower level play, if you build around the eidolon, and it goes down, 3 or 4 summons ends up being more than enough.


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To me it sounds like you are frustrated with summoners as a class, and haven't broken down why yet. You're appearing to me as being all over the place on what you're not satisfied with. Stat allocation, spells, eidolons activity time, eidolon customization, feeling eidolons are better than other class abilities (which it is because it's a larger portion of the summoners ability than comparable class abilities on other classes) etc. It's not that your rationale is arcane, it's that you're not being specific in what you want to resolve as far as I can tell.

It's my opinion that the summoner isn't OP compared to other classes if you're looking at potential. It's that they don't require a great deal of system mastery to be really good, so you get more disparity in a group (I believe someone else mentioned this). Take a look what you can do with cleric summoners or wizard summoners and a single level of diabolist if you want an example. (If you're using inner sea magic, i'd never bother with a summoner over a core caster.)

All I can say is you can't look at the eidolon in a vacuum comparing it to other class abilities. It won't result in a fair comparison.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

To be fair, the summoner class does most appeal to somebody who is looking for a way to play a monster -- which means that the summoner basically is a required cohort.

But the original rules often require a standard summoner to be without his eidolon -- it takes a minute to perform the ritual to summon your eidolon (which means you won't have it available if your camp is attacked in the middle of the night while you are sleeping), and you may not have the eidolon available because it got banished. At lower levels, you will want to keep your eidolon away from creatures that can inflict ability damage (since it does not heal naturally and you initially have no magical means to cure it). At higher levels, assuming that you make your eidolon as big as possible for maximum strength, you might find that you have no way to fit your eidolon into some dungeon tunnels.

Also, if the players make their eidolons really tough at the summoner's expense, remember that the eidolon is dismissed if the summoner loses consciousness -- and the glowing runes on the foreheads of summoner and eidolon are meant to point that out to their enemies. Even if they cover up the runes, enemies should be suspecious about a humanoid and monster pair who tend to stay close together and operate as though they could read each other's minds. Attempting to knock out the summoner is certainly a valid tactic for the enemies of an eidolon or its summoner.

Shadow Lodge

Artanthos wrote:
The fighters weapon training and weapon specialization (both combat abilities) are available 24/7. Eventually, they allow the fighter to surpass even the barbarian in DPR.

At the risk of this devolving into a fighter thread...

I'm totally fine with that. The fighter should be the king of DPR. Because in our current system, that's pretty much all they get.

It's not all about DPR though. I think most people feel that SHOULD be the domain of fighters and barbarians. It's about the other stuff you're packaging with solid DPR- superb action economy, perfect control of your cohort, two HP pools, early access to black tentacles and haste (not to mention whatever else you're getting with UMD).


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I think trying to limit the availability of the eidolon is the wrong way to go about it. I think the answer is to make the eidolon a balanced class feature. People rarely complain about druids anymore, on occassion sure, but for the most part they have been evened out. If you converted everything a druid with a big cat or pouncing dinosaur companion gets into raw 'points' of power, and compared that against the same for the summoner, it would be near equal.

The problem is that the summoner can pick and choose pretty much everything they get. They choose their spells known, they choose what to summon, and most importantly, they choose every aspect of their eidolon. Most people naturally choose things that make the eidolon more stompy and badass. Even if they dont normally optimize. What they end up with is essentially a hyper optimized character with little effort. To do the same thing you'd have to pick all the 'best' options from many different books and carefully pick and choose alternate class features, feats, archetypes, which animal compnion you use, what gear you give it etc. The eidolon, just take more claw attacks and make it bigger with pounce.

An optimized wildshaping druid with a well equiped big cat familiar is at least equal to a summoner with a pouncing quadraped eidolon in sheer offense. (the eidolon will out fight the cat, but not the cat AND the wildshaped druid and the summoner wont add in alot of fighting, just spells, which the druid can match pretty well).

So to balance out the eidolon you take away some of its flexibility. Make sure some of its 'stuff' goes into less powerful options like scent or darkvision. I would recommend one of two things. Either create several more 'base' forms that have about half of the gained evolutions preset, that include some less optimal ones, or simply divide the evolution pool and evolutions into offense, defense, and other and thus again forcing the summoner to add non combat related evolutions to their eidolon.


You know, you can go an awful long way by just making pounce a minimum 5th level evolution.

Shadow Lodge

Cubic Prism wrote:

To me it sounds like you are frustrated with summoners as a class, and haven't broken down why yet. You're appearing to me as being all over the place on what you're not satisfied with. Stat allocation, spells, eidolons activity time, eidolon customization, feeling eidolons are better than other class abilities (which it is because it's a larger portion of the summoners ability than comparable class abilities on other classes) etc. It's not that your rationale is arcane, it's that you're not being specific in what you want to resolve as far as I can tell.

It's my opinion that the summoner isn't OP compared to other classes if you're looking at potential. It's that they don't require a great deal of system mastery to be really good, so you get more disparity in a group (I believe someone else mentioned this). Take a look what you can do with cleric summoners or wizard summoners and a single level of diabolist if you want an example. (If you're using inner sea magic, i'd never bother with a summoner over a core caster.)

All I can say is you can't look at the eidolon in a vacuum comparing it to other class abilities. It won't result in a fair comparison.

Fair point. Perhaps I'm splashing too much opinion around. But here's the short version:

My only real issue with eidolons is that they are essentially omnipresent, with very situational exceptions (being ambushed while sleeping, not being able to fit through a door, etc).

I feel like addressing this singular issue would also address any other ancillary gripe about eidolons. Again, I'm a huge fan of the class. I just think having the eidolon constantly around raises a lot weird imbalances with other classes (ex. eidolon v wolf companion) and diminishes the class from a thematic standard (ex. they don't do a whole lot of summoning, people stop playing the summoner and start playing the eidolon, etc, etc, ad nauseam).

And additionally, it's just a nice bonus if it also makes pumping your prime casting stat more obligitory.

Shadow Lodge

Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:
You know, you can go an awful long way by just making pounce a minimum 5th level evolution.

Nicely put.


ElectricMatthew wrote:
Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:
You know, you can go an awful long way by just making pounce a minimum 5th level evolution.
Nicely put.

Or rather, raising its point value.

If it were a three point evolution, you could go all-in at lower levels, but you couldn't then afford pounce and maximum number of attacks.

Yeah. That sounds pretty good.

I maintain that summoners are only truly scary at low levels though. That 3/4 progression gets more and more relevant over time. A lot of GMs are just panicking because they assume it'll go on forever.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:
ElectricMatthew wrote:
Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:
You know, you can go an awful long way by just making pounce a minimum 5th level evolution.
Nicely put.

Or rather, raising its point value.

If it were a three point evolution, you could go all-in at lower levels, but you couldn't then afford pounce and maximum number of attacks.

Yeah. That sounds pretty good.

I maintain that summoners are only truly scary at low levels though. That 3/4 progression gets more and more relevant over time. A lot of GMs are just panicking because they assume it'll go on forever.

I think raising the point cost on pounce would definately be a good idea. It does seem like a really potent ability for just 1 point. But I still think it is important to force a summoner to split up his evolutions instead of being able to focus them all on combat. Even the best animal companions have SOMETHING that isnt all about eating faces, like scent, or lowlight vision.

And I am not sure summoners are only scary at low levels. I played a 10th level synthesist and he was pretty rediculous before I willingly toned him down, and that isnt even the most powerful kind of summoner.


But focusing on combat makes for a paper eidolon.

They're gonna wreck whatever they pounce in round one, but focused fire brings them down fast because they always have a low AC and low HP. It just looks scary on paper, all those big attacks.

Show me an eidolon with a level-appropriate AC or HP. I'd like to see it.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:

But focusing on combat makes for a paper eidolon.

They're gonna wreck whatever they pounce in round one, but focused fire brings them down fast because they always have a low AC and low HP. It just looks scary on paper, all those big attacks.

Show me an eidolon with a level-appropriate AC or HP. I'd like to see it.

10th Level Quadraped Eidolon: (assuming the summoner took extra evolution once, or they could be half elf either way evolution pool is 16 but it could be done without that by ditching flight or rend)

Evolutions: Bite legs x2 (free)
Large 4pts
Limbs arms 2pts
claws x2 2pts
Pounce 1pt
Flight 2pts
Rend 2pts
Improved natural armor x2 2pts
Magic attacks 1pt

Strength: 26 (14 base, +4 for level +8 for large evo)
Dex: 19 (14 base +4 for level + 1 for ability increase at level 5 + 2 for dex belt -2 for large evolution)
Con: 18 (13 base +1 ability score increase at 10 + 4 for large evolution)
Int 7
Wis 10
Char 11

Feats: Power Attack, Weapon Focus claws, Dodge, Toughness
Gear: ring of protection +2, Amulet of natural armor +2 belt of dex +2
Thats 20k less then a third of the wealth by level of a 10th level summoner

AC: 32 [+16 Natural (+2 base +8 for level +2 for improved nat armor evolutions +2 for large evolution, +2 for amulet) +4 dex, +1 dodge, +2 deflection (ring) - 1 size)

HP: 76 - 8d10+40

Keep in mind that all of that is without direct intervention by the summoner, who is free to act compared to say a fighter, who is busy fighting. The summoner can buff the eidolon heal it, or simply keep it up with his own hit points via lifelink and use umd potions or other items to heal himself. So it sort of also has 10d8+summoners con x 10 as well. Thats seems pretty not a glass cannon at all to me...


Can't keep it up with his own HP- he can only keep its limp corpse from vanishing for 24 hours. More later!


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

"Life Link (Su): Starting at 1st level, a summoner forms a close bond with his eidolon. Whenever the eidolon takes enough damage to send it back to its home plane, the summoner can, as a free action, sacrifice any number of hit points. Each hit point sacrificed in this way prevents 1 point of damage done to the eidolon. This can prevent the eidolon from being sent back to its home plane."

If the eidolon is at 10hp, and takes a hit for 20hp, the summoner can sacrifice 20 hp and prevent 20 damage to the eidolon, the eidolon is still at 10hp and fighting.

Scarab Sages

ElectricMatthew wrote:
early access to black tentacles and haste

If we are going to raise the topic of spell access, I have my own opinions. I don't believe summoners (or the magus) should have received their own spell lists. Both classes should have used the sorcerer/wizard spell lists.

Quote:
(not to mention whatever else you're getting with UMD).

You should see what my fighter and wizard do with UMD.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Artanthos wrote:
ElectricMatthew wrote:
early access to black tentacles and haste

If we are going to raise the topic of spell access, I have my own opinions. I don't believe summoners (or the magus) should have received their own spell lists. Both classes should have used the sorcerer/wizard spell lists.

The precedent was already there in the bard. 6 level casters get unique spell lists to get the spells that are important to them at the appropriate level. Whether you believe it is right or not, those characters use the 'bard chasis' and that includes a unique spell list.

Scarab Sages

Kolokotroni wrote:


AC: 32 [+16 Natural (+2 base +8 for level +2 for improved nat armor evolutions +2 for large evolution, +2 for amulet) +4 dex, +1 dodge, +2 deflection (ring) - 1 size)

HP: 76 - 8d10+40

Not bad

Of course my level 10 fighter has just as many attacks per round, a 38 AC, 94 hit points and does not have to worry about squeezing rules when we go indoors.

Scarab Sages

Kolokotroni wrote:
Artanthos wrote:
ElectricMatthew wrote:
early access to black tentacles and haste

If we are going to raise the topic of spell access, I have my own opinions. I don't believe summoners (or the magus) should have received their own spell lists. Both classes should have used the sorcerer/wizard spell lists.

The precedent was already there in the bard. 6 level casters get unique spell lists to get the spells that are important to them at the appropriate level. Whether you believe it is right or not, those characters use the 'bard chasis' and that includes a unique spell list.

I am aware of the original reasoning and I don't expect that opinion to be popular.

Bards receiving a unique spell list is perfectly fine. Like the witch, they are receiving access to certain spells wizards and sorcerers were never intended to have.

This is not the case with the magus and sorcerer.

Lantern Lodge

Kolokotroni wrote:

"Life Link (Su): Starting at 1st level, a summoner forms a close bond with his eidolon. Whenever the eidolon takes enough damage to send it back to its home plane, the summoner can, as a free action, sacrifice any number of hit points. Each hit point sacrificed in this way prevents 1 point of damage done to the eidolon. This can prevent the eidolon from being sent back to its home plane."

If the eidolon is at 10hp, and takes a hit for 20hp, the summoner can sacrifice 20 hp and prevent 20 damage to the eidolon, the eidolon is still at 10hp and fighting.

Not if your eidolon has CON > 10.

If the eidolon is sent below 0, but not to negative CON, they're simply down and the criteria for life like is not met.

"Eidolons are treated as summoned creatures, except that they are not sent back to their home plane until reduced to a number of negative hit points equal to or greater than their Constitution score."


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Deadmoon wrote:
Kolokotroni wrote:

"Life Link (Su): Starting at 1st level, a summoner forms a close bond with his eidolon. Whenever the eidolon takes enough damage to send it back to its home plane, the summoner can, as a free action, sacrifice any number of hit points. Each hit point sacrificed in this way prevents 1 point of damage done to the eidolon. This can prevent the eidolon from being sent back to its home plane."

If the eidolon is at 10hp, and takes a hit for 20hp, the summoner can sacrifice 20 hp and prevent 20 damage to the eidolon, the eidolon is still at 10hp and fighting.

Not if your eidolon has CON > 10.

If the eidolon is sent below 0, but not to negative CON, they're simply down and the criteria for life like is not met.

"Eidolons are treated as summoned creatures, except that they are not sent back to their home plane until reduced to a number of negative hit points equal to or greater than their Constitution score."

Hmmm I didnt realize that one...interesting. So having a high con score is almost a bad thing with eidolons...you dont want to just go down you want to take enough damage to be sent back to your home plane. Ok, I admit that does take some of the luster off of Lifelink, but the summoner is still capable of healing the eidolon when he is taking damage and has the action economy to do it.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Artanthos wrote:
Kolokotroni wrote:


AC: 32 [+16 Natural (+2 base +8 for level +2 for improved nat armor evolutions +2 for large evolution, +2 for amulet) +4 dex, +1 dodge, +2 deflection (ring) - 1 size)

HP: 76 - 8d10+40

Not bad

Of course my level 10 fighter has just as many attacks per round, a 38 AC, 94 hit points and does not have to worry about squeezing rules when we go indoors.

Certainly, the fighter still fights the best, so long as he can get off his full attack. (pounce is really really good for that) All I was deomonstrating was that you can have a perfectly respectable AC, and that was unbuffed. Mage armor cast on the eidolon is a long term buff to 36, sheild and barkskin are moderate duration buffs to bring it to 44. Then theres blur.

The summoner can also use reduce person in a pinch, but really that is a problem for all pet classes, the best pets get to large size.

The fighter also cant fly, and isnt also a fairly capable caster with a separate set of actions. He is also very reliant on his gear to be as good as he is. The eidolon is still rather badass without his 3 magic items. Sure the fighter is king of static bonuses, but the eidolon is more then up to the task of taking on level appropriate challenges too, and he has lots of extra help to deal with situations the fighter cant.

Lantern Lodge

Kolokotroni wrote:
Deadmoon wrote:
Kolokotroni wrote:

"Life Link (Su): Starting at 1st level, a summoner forms a close bond with his eidolon. Whenever the eidolon takes enough damage to send it back to its home plane, the summoner can, as a free action, sacrifice any number of hit points. Each hit point sacrificed in this way prevents 1 point of damage done to the eidolon. This can prevent the eidolon from being sent back to its home plane."

If the eidolon is at 10hp, and takes a hit for 20hp, the summoner can sacrifice 20 hp and prevent 20 damage to the eidolon, the eidolon is still at 10hp and fighting.

Not if your eidolon has CON > 10.

If the eidolon is sent below 0, but not to negative CON, they're simply down and the criteria for life like is not met.

"Eidolons are treated as summoned creatures, except that they are not sent back to their home plane until reduced to a number of negative hit points equal to or greater than their Constitution score."

Hmmm I didnt realize that one...interesting. So having a high con score is almost a bad thing with eidolons...you dont want to just go down you want to take enough damage to be sent back to your home plane. Ok, I admit that does take some of the luster off of Lifelink, but the summoner is still capable of healing the eidolon when he is taking damage and has the action economy to do it.

Aegis of Recovery (neck slot) can be used to cover the case where the eidolon goes down but is not sent back to its home plane, but it's 1500g.

There may also be other methods.


Word. Kolo I think we were both misinterpreting it, but in different ways.

Anyway, my point stands, I think. You had to make a considerable defensive investment, which downgraded the eidolon quite a bit. Not to mention, his item slots (which are shared!) are taken up with eidolon defenses. If you've fielded a summoner for any period of time, you know that NPCs have a nasty habit of targeting the summoner first, so they can get 2-for-1. It makes a ton of sense, and there's a glowing rune on their forehead so the GM never has to justify it.

So how is your summoner defending himself with those crucial slots taken up and only light armor? I'd love to do it with a mithril breastplate, but PFS rules (we use them despite not being org play) have thus far blocked my attempts.

This is all a very longwinded way of saying that a straight up summoner is actually a fairly balanced class, in my opinion. They just look really scary until you read the fine print.


You guys are all focusing on the power of an eidolon. What about the power of the summoner? Using s 25 point build summoner at level 1, non synthesist, without the eidolon you are pretty much stuck acid splashing the ENTIRE combat, until something kills you. Take the rage away fro ma barbarian, and he will still mess stuff up with his greatweapon, take damage, and in general, be useful in combat. Summoner spells are borderline useless short of making his summon better. Yes he gets more summon monster spells, whoop de freakin do. A typical adventure from my experience comprises of, on an adventure day, 3-4 fights a day consisting of 3-5 rounds. Taking the eidolon down to cha + /rounds means the summoner is completly useless for half of these, where as the barbarian will be useful at all times. Apples and oranges.

p.s. totally agree with above post.


The summoner is also a spell caster with an okay list and number of spells though, and the barbarian without rage is a lot weaker than one with rage going. I think your overestimating one and underestimating the other.


Is it ok that I love it when people argue over a class to the point of grabbing at all the finer details, more or less doing my job for me in class research. Really I would start a flame war over all 18 classes if I could just to see what I could learn

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