Trip Magus Build


Advice

Silver Crusade

I have searched the forums and I can't find any builds for this, specifically. Can anyone help with making a PFS legal and optimized trip magus? I am thinking of doing an Elven Spire Defender archetype that uses a whip, though I am by no means married to the idea.

Shadow Lodge

This seems viable in PFS, as a lot of the BBEG's are humanoid casters. You could do a Kensai*, or Spire Defender for the whip proficiency, but basically all you need are the feats Combat Expertise, Improved Trip, and Greater Trip to be effective. You also probably want the Whip Mastery line of feats, to threaten with your whip, so you would be a bit feat starved.

*I would recommend Kensai over Spire Defender, as you get some really nice benefits with AoO's and drawing weapons, along with (gradually) getting your casting stat to touch AC.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

My suggested route would be to go Staff Magus. You get quarterstaff mastery for free and some particular staff tripping tricks as well as magus features that synergise nicely.


I'd go Half-Elf so you can get the alternate trait that let's you be proficient in any weapon, that way you can do whip without losing the spellcasting that you would with Kensai. Then stock up on True Strike as your spell of choice and just whip-trip all day long.

Silver Crusade

Hmm, I guess I'm imagining this guy as a battlefield controller. To LazarX, the main reason I was thinking of using a whip was for the disarm and reach to go along with the tripping. I can see the Half-Elf thing, and I don't mind the diminished spellcasting, as long as it doesn't impede my ability to control the battlefield. Maybe I should have called this thread BF Control Magus ;). Anyway, When considering Kensai over Spire Defender, I realize that AC is important, but mathematically, isn't it better to have a higher To-Hit than AC? The more evil dudes I can take down and keep down means less are trying to hit me or my party members. And in that regard, what about combining either archetype with Bladebound? A whip is a one-handed slashing weapon, and the inherent magic bonuses that come with it will increase my To-Hit. Of course, if the Kensai gives me better control than the S.D., then I'm all for it. I just don't have the experience to see which benefits are the best for what I want.

Shadow Lodge

Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Starfinder Superscriber
LazarX wrote:
My suggested route would be to go Staff Magus. You get quarterstaff mastery for free and some particular staff tripping tricks as well as magus features that synergise nicely.

This is what I did for my Trip-focused Magus, as well as adding a few levels of Flowing Monk.


Some other things to consider. You can ignore str and go weapon finesse/ Agile enchantment with a whip.

As for your comment about Ac vs To-Hit I agree hitting is more important. But I don't see how spire defender has any better to-hit then Kensai. In fact Kensai gets weapon focus for free so it has a leg up on to-hit.


The best battlefield control magus is probably not a trip magus but a hexcrafter prehensile hair user and later a dazing fireball user magus. Leave the dedicated trip builds to martials, you have much better toys to play with. In this guide you can find examples of these builds.

EDIT: The prehensile hair magus trips as well.

Silver Crusade

Thanks guys. To change the subject slightly, what is the prevailing opinion on the Bladebound archetype?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
isdestroyer wrote:
Thanks guys. To change the subject slightly, what is the prevailing opinion on the Bladebound archetype?

That for the most part, they're a dime a dozen, especially when paired with Kensai and the usual dervish scimitar. (Disclosure: One of my PFS characters is a Bladebound mage, but I only took that path after a boon gave me a free katana proficiency. And I did not stack it with Kensai)

Overall it's a balanced archetype with a reasonable cost. You do shut yourself out of some nova options if you are saddled with a GM like me, who rules that the blade can't be enchanted.

Stacking other archetypes on top of it means an accepted reduction in magic power for more physical tricks. So it depends on where you want to go.


Bear in mind that by going both Bladebound and Kensai you do not take any Magus Arcana until level 6 (no extra arcana until then too) and you also lose the 9th lvl arcana. You can partially make up for the loss by going elf and taking the favored class bonus every level.

And these builds usually lead to more martial inclined Maguses as LazarX mentioned. You will be able to trip just fine, but for general control you do not want to diminish your casting.

Shadow Lodge

idestroyer wrote:
Thanks guys. To change the subject slightly, what is the prevailing opinion on the Bladebound archetype?

As LazarX said, they are rather common, especially when combined with kensai. Just going to expand, the typical bladebound kensai has a scimitar (for every single dex-based bladebound build), or a Katana (for most strength builds). The archetype does limit your magical weapon abilities, so be careful there. Still, I don't think whip using bladebound kensai magi exist currently. Its fairly balanced overall, and the great thing about it is it stacks with almost every other archetype.

As a different possible route, you could go with a Hexcrafter magus getting proficiency with whip via the half-elf alternate racial trait, or the Heirloom Weapon trait in the adventurers armor (if you have the book). For some hexes to help with control. You definitely want the Maneuver Mastery (trip) arcana as your first magus arcana either way.

Silver Crusade

Thanks again. Wow, wasn't expecting a response that quick :).

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
ArmouredMonk13 wrote:
Still, I don't think whip using bladebound kensai magi exist currently.

That's because by the rules, you can't be one. The whip is not a qualifying weapon for the blackblade. (nor is the quarterstaff) You can go kensai, but not bladebound.


It's one handed and slashing. Why wouldn't it qualify?

Sovereign Court

Be whatever Magus you want that doesn't give up the your first arcana and use a whip and at 3rd level take the Wand Wielder arcana. Grab yourself a wand of true strike (only 2PP!) and Bam! Do whatever maneuver your little heart desires... just try not to provoke, you don't want to get yourself killed after all.

You get your BAB + Str Mod + Misc Bonuses + 20

I've seen it work extremely well.


There is a magus arcana that let's you use your magus level as your bab plus str. To trip things plus improved trip of course

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