Hunter Discussion


Class Discussion

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Giving Hunter Paladin styled animal companion might be for the best. The boost to intelligence + some bonus things + a template to add onto it at some level to make it a magical beast. Combined with new teamwork feats and either a reworking of Animal Focus to make it something more often used or strong since it works sort of like Judgment/Smite Evil at the moment.

I think the class could use more flavor and options. Putting them onto the animal companion and new teamwork feats is totally the right direction, but it's hard to test it at the moment since there aren't many teamwork feats that give anything more substantial than random +1s and +2s or rerolls.

The ability to talk to your animal companion would be amazing too.


Lilletto wrote:

Giving Hunter Paladin styled animal companion might be for the best. The boost to intelligence + some bonus things + a template to add onto it at some level to make it a magical beast. Combined with new teamwork feats and either a reworking of Animal Focus to make it something more often used or strong since it works sort of like Judgment/Smite Evil at the moment.

I think the class could use more flavor and options. Putting them onto the animal companion and new teamwork feats is totally the right direction, but it's hard to test it at the moment since there aren't many teamwork feats that give anything more substantial than random +1s and +2s or rerolls.

The ability to talk to your animal companion would be amazing too.

True... there are a number of abilities in the Nature Warden PrC that would translate very well here.

Gotta say, though, I would be looking to jump into Mammoth Rider ASAP. They have better companions.

Although, maybe that should be another thing to look at. Bringing the Mammoth Rider style bonuses over to Hunter.

Liberty's Edge

I want to love this class, I want to live this class, but the negative feedback from the folks about BAB, and weak companion and no combat styles is true.

I want a ranger with a spell list that I get to earlier or a AC I get earlier and I want to be able to use my combat style. Yeah, I want a lot. I really thought Woodland Skirmisher was the archetype and then some of the stuff you lose is too big.

I love the inquisitor and the divine hunter (minus the big losses of fear protection etc) and want to really build something like that.

I thought Hunter was going to take that best of ranger and druid and make them the master of the forest. The animal focus needs to grow with you. It needs to be untyped bonus so it can stack with all the gear you acquire, or some little used bonus.

I like the idea of having the Paladin style AC. I really want this AC to be one of the best in the world. It needs to be. You can hamper the Hunter damage boost, by giving me a pet that can walk in and beat the heck out of the mook or BBEG. Of course, the lack of aggro, is going to make it hard to make it a tank type.


Mort the Cleverly Named wrote:
Sean K Reynolds wrote:
Revising animal focus and having it apply to your companion as well is an interesting idea.

Doesn't it already? In the first paragraph about Animal Aspect it says "(her animal companion also gains this benefit)."

Quote:
* A ranged hunter is going to run into problems with the animal companion interfering with shots, requiring the hunter to take Precise Shot, which would be an annoying feat tax. Perhaps we can add a class ability that counts as that.

This would be great. Ideally (through class features or new Teamwork feats) the companion would not require Precise Shot NOR provide cover to an enemy. I could see a Hunter's companion keeping enemies at bay while his master peppers them with arrows, or goes in for the kill with a Boar Spear. Or perhaps some way to extend the range of Teamwork feats, or allow the companion to provide protection from AoOs.

Really, anything that allows a Hunter the options of shooting, casting, or otherwise not directly getting into melee while still providing benefits from the companion. Armed with the current class and selection of Teamwork feats, a melee team would seem to have the lion's share of options at the moment.

The first idea I had for teamwork feats when looking over this was one that made you not provoke to shoot in melee if flanking with your AC and then one that allowed you to take AoOs/gain the flanking bonus against the target.


Whatever spell-list and progression they end up going with (ranger or druid), I think the spell list can be filled out with options that add bonus spells to their list. This could be something as simple as selecting a ranger spell to add to your list of druid spells every couple levels.

I think the idea of possessing your animal companion is great. Shared senses too.

Animal Focus isn't a bad option, or unbalanced, it's just dry, particularly considering the magic item overlap. Wolf, Stag, and Snake are on the right track. I'd much prefer seeing this ability grant special combat options related to animals than stat and skill buffs. I'd prefer this to the suggestion of importing combat styles. Maybe you could receive an additional bonus if the animal type matches your companion.

I'm on board with more cooperative abilities. Maybe scaling the "aid another" bonuses when used between you and your companion. Or some set-up abilities that take advantage of readied actions.


Weird Idea.

What if, instead of animal focus, you got the same Str/Dex bonuses that your AC got from Animal Companion levels and half of its Natural Armor Bonus advancement as inherent bonuses?

So at level 10, the Hunter would get +3 str, +3 dex and +3 natural armor.

Call it "Tandem Training" or something.


Personally, I like that, Lord Malkov but it's really quite strong, isn't it?

At the moment, the most fun hunter I've been able to make at low levels is a Catfolk using claws + produce flames and using an animal companion as a flanking buddy. Animal companion who's a tripper would also work fabulously.

Grand Lodge

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I think part of the problem with this class is they are trying to make a hybrid class from a "base" class and a hybrid class. Remember, Ranger is essentially a hybrid of Fighter and Druid to start with. With archetypes already in existence that blur the line between Druid and Ranger there isn't much room for a whole new base class.

That being said, I DO like the concept of the Hunter with the increased focus on teamwork with the Animal Companion. I hope to see some good Teamwork Feats in the book as well or the teamwork aspect may not prove as good is it seems to be shooting for.


Lilletto wrote:

Personally, I like that, Lord Malkov but it's really quite strong, isn't it?

At the moment, the most fun hunter I've been able to make at low levels is a Catfolk using claws + produce flames and using an animal companion as a flanking buddy. Animal companion who's a tripper would also work fabulously.

Yes... it is quite strong.

But this class needs something strong. Right now I have no idea what you are getting by giving up three levels of casting. I mean look at the Inquisitor. They are the 6 level divine caster of the moment.

They took a cleric and gave them judgements, better skills, teamwork feats that work with all allies (not just a companion) bane weapon, and they still get a domain.

Now it isn't quite as simple as that, but it is not a wholly far-fetched comparison.

With that in mind. If you are getting teamwork feats, okay. And then animal focus is the only other thing... it needs to be pretty darn good.

If effect, I feel like I need to compare animal focus to Judgments + Bane.

And that also has to take into account that the Druid spell list is slightly weaker than the cleric spell list.


Give it trapfindning.


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Zark wrote:
Give it trapfindning.

You know, that makes me think (and it may have already been suggested) that maybe adding something akin to the Trapper's trap ability wouldn't be out of place in a Hunter class. I know others have mentioned that (with tracking coming in at 2nd level) the Hunter isn't quite as great a hunter/tracker as a Ranger, but that might even the playing field a little bit on that side of things.


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Drake Brimstone wrote:
I think part of the problem with this class is they are trying to make a hybrid class from a "base" class and a hybrid class. Remember, Ranger is essentially a hybrid of Fighter and Druid to start with. With archetypes already in existence that blur the line between Druid and Ranger there isn't much room for a whole new base class.

On top of that, the druid is already functionally a hybrid, with 3/4 BAB, medium armor, decent weapons and useful combat abilities. So the space is even narrower than you'd think.


i feel the class would go a long way if given the same combat style options as a ranger, and some boosts to their aspect abilities and animal companion. A class that is this focused on their companion should have a superior companion.

The rest I think would come in with new teamwork feats, there need to be more of those that the animal companion can use.


Maybe if it had an ability like the brawler to have the benefit of combat feats and/or the ability to grant the benefit to it's animal companion.


I'll admit hunter was the class I was the most enthusiastic about... On reading it though I'd rather it went a bit less in the direction of spells and more in the direction of the animal focuses.. I like the idea of having one active at all times that you could switch on the fly and apply to the animal companion. I actually like the way the animal focuses are set up except I agree maybe setting them as a diffferent typed bonus like insight would be much cooler...

Agree that spear/bow/(throwing knife perhaps?) seems thematically more appropriate to me... I was hoping the archetype was in the vien of 'gone native' feral types... Spellcasting seems... I don't know... a little formal/fluffly compared to the hardass kind of wild man I was expecting to call a "hunter".

There are some magics that I think make sense like the sanctuaries and commune with natures and ability to navigate environments wtihout penalties that I like... Just maybe perhaps as class abilities instead of spells perhaps... And nobody would fault this somewhat of a self sufficient loner type survivalist of not having curative poultice capabilities. ...

No doubt its tricky... Thematically the one I'm most interested in but mechanically not quite what I was hoping for. Maybe some archetypes could help this class fit more into the different kinds of slots people were expecting it to fit into. Evolutionist summoner still much more easily helps me create the thematic that i'm going for so far...


-I want original spell list.
For now, Hunter doesn't have Beast Shape, Plant Shape, Elemental Body.
(In connection with these, FLY will be added to class skill.)
And Ranger's combat Spells are preferable.

-About animal companion, familiar like connection may be good.
(empathic link, speak with master, spell resistance)

-Animal focus
Duration: for 1 minute per day per hunter level. This duraton does not need to be consecutive, but it must be used in 1 minute increments.

In reference to Rage power, at 1st level Hunter get one focus, and gains additional focus for every two levels of Hunter attained after 1st level. Hunter gains the benefits of some of foci only while using Animal Focus ability, but others of these require the hunter to take an action first.
Hunter can gain additional foci with Additional Animal Focus FEAT and Instant Animal Focus SPELL.

Liberty's Edge

Coridan's thoughts on Hunter:

I will (jokingly) chalk this class up to Sean playing too much WoW instead of working ;)

The concept though is standard in fantasy of a warrior and animal companion kicking ass. Wejust have to get this class to focus there and stand out from its parents.

Step 1 - New name. Beastlord, Beastmaster, Tamer, Animalist, Zookeeper. Hunter is an antonym for this class and a totally inappropriate name.

Step 2 -Just drop the spellcasting entirely. Give it some SLAs to make up for it and focus it more as a martial/skill class. Maybe speak with animals at will, combat styles was a good suggestion. A bonus feat list that you and your companion share with feats like Bodyguard on it or just add a bunch more teamwork feats into the game.

This class only needs some minor tweaking and is one of the ten I look forward to playing since I love druids but hate wild shape mechanically.


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I would like to call it beastmaster.

drop spellcasting.

fighter HP/attack bonus.

more abilities focused on the animal companion.


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Made a basic hunter to play with last night and here are some playtest thoughts:

-Overall, at level 1 this feels like a druid with less abilities. Because it is. I kept wondering, "where is the Hunter?".

-The Animal Focus was really disappointing. I decided not to use the skill bonuses because I wasn't sure if I'd be wasting it (+4 to perception, but nothing to perceive; why waste my stealth if the place is empty). Used the +2 Strength during battle and it was "okay". A watered down bull's strength, which is all right at first level.

-Other than the Animal Focus, this plays and feels like a Druid. All that I ended up testing was the Animal Focus at level 1, because that's what makes this class the "Hunter". Overall, extremely limited, weak, and does not do enough to separate this from Druid.

As of right now, this may as well be a Druid Archetype. I see nothing that brings this out as a Ranger. As someone else pointed out, Ranger is a Druid/Fighter hybrid to begin with.

As much as the developer's may not like to hear this, it may be best to start over with this class. As of right now, you have a subpar Druid that mimics an Inquisitor for teamwork feats.

I've already posted suggestions I have in an earlier post, and I will continue to stick by them. Many others have pointed out other great ideas.

--Increase the BaB to full.
--If you're going to keep this a spellcasting class, keep it as a 6/9 even with full BaB.
--Either revamp animal focus or create a new ability entirely. Personally, others and even me have said that Skirmisher and Shapeshifter archetypes have similar abilities. You may as well create a new archetype with those archetypes giving them a druid spell list and call it complete.
--More focus on the animal.
--This is a Hunter; we should have abilities that make us feel like a hunter.

I'll be playtesting a higher level Hunter later this weekend and will give some more thoughts then. Right now, as others have done in other class threads, I'm asking myself, "What role does the Hunter fill that another class can't do better?" And right now, I don't have an answer.

-Jessie

Edit: I'll post my char stats later as I'm at work right now and just wanted to get this posted. I played a half elf with fairly evenly distributed stats and went with a classic wolf.

Dark Archive

Hunter
Full BAB and strong Fort/Ref saves

Skills - Climb, Craft, Handle Animal,Heal, Intimidate, Knowledge(Dungeoneering), Knowledge(Geography), Knowledge(Local), Knowledge(Nature), Perception, Profession, Ride, Sense Motive, Stealth, Survival, Swim.
Skill Ranks per Level: 6+ Int Modifier

Weapons - All Simple Ranged + Longbow, Shortbow, Bolas, Boomerang
Dagger, Sickle, Club, Shortspear, Bayonet, Boar Spear, Longspear, Spear, Handaxe, Kukri, Throwing axe, Battleaxe, Greataxe, Greatclub, Klar

Armor - Light and Medium no metal
Shields - No tower or metal

1 - Hunting Companion, Hunters Focus, Track
2 - Wild Empathy, Trackless Step
3 - Hunter Tactics, Teamwork Feat
4 - Endurance, Lick Wounds
5 - Hunters Focus
6 - Teamwork Feat
7 - Woodland Stride
8 - Swift Tracker, Lick Wounds
9 - Teamwork Feat
10- Hunter Focus
11- Venom Immunity
12- Teamwork Feat, Lick Wounds
13- Camouflage
14-
15- Hunter Focus, Teamwork Feat
16- Lick Wounds
17- Hide in Plane Sight
18- Teamwork Feat
19-
20- Master Hunter, Lick Wounds

Hunting Companion - Chose an animal companion from the druid list from the core rule book excluding Ape, Camel, Horse, Pony.

Hunters Focus - You use a Standard action to give both you and your Hunting Companion a +1 bonus to Attack and Damage rolls, Preception, Sense Motive, and Survival. This bonus last for 24 hours or untill the target it dead or a new focus has been picked. This bonus increases by +1 at level 5 and every 5 levels after. You can use this ability once per day and one additional time per day at 5th level and ever 5 levels after. You can only have one focus at a time. If a new focus is pick the old one is lost.

Lick Wounds - Your Hunting Companion take a Standard action to lick its wounds healing for dX or XdX. The healing is increased by XdX at 8th level and every four level after. This action provokes an attack of opportunity. You can use this ability a number of times per day equal to your Wisdom Modifier.

The other thing I thought about adding was something call Weathered Hunter that would give a small bonus to Natural Armor every few levels.


Tried building a high level hunter yesterday. When done compared it to an inquisitor and immediately scrapped it again. The hunter has two things going for it in comparison to the inquistor. I won't worry about listing where it loses out because to me it's pretty much everything else.

1) Animal Companion is slightly better due to not needing Boon Companion, being buffed by Animal Focus and not needing to spend it's feats on teamwork feats
2) You are better at buffing your AC due to Natural weapon centric spells on the druid list.


Alex Mack wrote:

Tried building a high level hunter yesterday. When done compared it to an inquisitor and immediately scrapped it again. The hunter has two things going for it in comparison to the inquistor. I won't worry about listing where it loses out because to me it's pretty much everything else.

1) Animal Companion is slightly better due to not needing Boon Companion, being buffed by Animal Focus and not needing to spend it's feats on teamwork feats
2) You are better at buffing your AC due to Natural weapon centric spells on the druid list.

The more I read feedback (and hopefully other playtesters will reveal the same issue), the more it sounds like the Animal Companion needs something unique here.

Any class that can achieve a domain can get an animal companion as a ranger does. Even a Sorcerer with the Sylvan bloodline can get an animal companion.

As such, simply giving teamwork feats does not seem enough to warrant a true animal companion oriented class. The animal companion needs new abilities or enhancement above and beyond what's normal already to make it viable. Sure, the Animal Focus flavors that in a way, but as it stands now it's not enough to make it worthwhile to take this class when Clerics, Druids, Rangers, Inquisitors, Sorcerers, Mad Dog Barbarians and probably other classes (archetypes) can achieve what this one does. Share Spells means that the kind of buffs that Animal Focus provides can be achieved magically.


I like this class, but it's not what I expected. I'm am a fan of the Animal Companion emphasis, but it doesn't seem like it went far enough. Personally, I think it would be better to have, instead of animal focus, something more akin to a sorcerer bloodline. Make it so that depending on your animal companion, you get bonuses as you level up. Either with a set list of animal companions, with each having its own "bloodline", or with a "bloodline" for each biome, i.e. bears, wolves, and badgers are part of the Forest "bloodline". I think that would certainly make it feel more animal-centric, and it would still allow for more options to be added later with relative ease.
Also, I feel like they should have a favored enemy-esque ability, seeing as they are hunters, so they probably hunt things. Maybe even just giving them specific ones, or a smaller list to choose from. For example, you could limit them to animals, magical animals, oozes, etc. Maybe prevent them from having a favored enemy that is sentient, as they are hunters, not assassins.

Dark Archive

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The Hunter needs to be a little more like the Summoner.

They have things in common: d8, 3/4 BAB, 6th level spells (the Summoner's are much better though, because they have pseudo 6th level spells). They have a beast companion.

We can all agree the Summoner's spells are better. In that case, the Hunter has to have his Animal Companion come to at least near the strength of the Eidolon.

Much better Animal Focus, some equivalent of Evolution Points, better Teamwork Feats should do the trick. Maybe throw in some of the Paladin Animal Companion stuff.

Sure, it maybe shouldn't be as good as the Summoner (overpowered anyway) or the Druid (famed for its power) but the one thing it has it should be the best at. It should get a super pet. Evolutions, feats, maybe Awakened at later levels.

A super pet character with okayish bow proficiency and those 6th level spells will do very nicely, thank you.

I have never played WoW btw. Not trying to emulate that.

Grand Lodge

I've seen a lot of stuff up thread about wanting some version of wild shape in the hunter class, and I'm ok if the animal aspect stuff changes from and enhancement bonus to some other "polymorph like" bonus so it can stack, but I would really like to see this class not get wild shape class abilities. I know they are powerful, but they are a killer for me from a prep/effort perspective. My issue is that they are awesome in versatility, but it means applying that versatility takes a lot of table time, and out side game prep time. The best execution I've seen is a player coming to the table with a binder of character sheets, each one for his "common forms" and then either sticking inside that set, or only using uncommon forms for utility purposes. Like turning into a bat for night recon and not actual combat.

I've been longing for years for a druid archetype that gets rid of wild shape, and have faked it with a house rule allowing Nature Oracles to use the Druid Spell list instead.

just my two cents.


Off the wall idea: Ranger and Druid are both too nature-y and well-rounded to try and combine. The Ranger is heavily front-loaded with abilities, and the Druid is capable of so much (wildshaping for melee, 9th level spells, a respectable skill set and number of class skills) that the two of them just don't mesh well. They are complementary, of course, but trying to hybridize them isn't going to give you anything new or even just unique.

And there seems to be a consensus that the Ranger isn't visible in the Hunter at all.

So how about trying to combine the druid with something else entirely? Inquisitor seems to be a popular one. Magus might be good.

Liberty's Edge

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If not wildshape, what about the Warg idea?

As in, you can take over your Animal companion and perhaps later take over other nearby (low level) animals of specific types as you level, similar to Game of Thrones Wargs.

It wouldn't give a power boost, but it could be a really useful utility application and another way to make the animal companion unique.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber
Foghammer wrote:

Off the wall idea: Ranger and Druid are both too nature-y and well-rounded to try and combine. The Ranger is heavily front-loaded with abilities, and the Druid is capable of so much (wildshaping for melee, 9th level spells, a respectable skill set and number of class skills) that the two of them just don't mesh well. They are complementary, of course, but trying to hybridize them isn't going to give you anything new or even just unique.

And there seems to be a consensus that the Ranger isn't visible in the Hunter at all.

So how about trying to combine the druid with something else entirely? Inquisitor seems to be a popular one. Magus might be good.

Exploring your idea further, since druid and ranger already have overlap, why not remove druid from the hybrid and mesh Ranger with Summoner? You could go with either 4th level or 6th level spellcasting. Pet evolutions could instead be more feats for the pet.


Firstly, I think when looking at animal focus as the trade-out for wildshape, there are two things to think about:

Wildshape is far more powerful in terms of statistical boosts, abilities gained, and versatility

Wildhshape lasts 1 hour per level.

SO, if animal focus lasted 1 hour/level, but was far weaker (it is) in terms of effect, then you have a better tradeoff.

Then you have to figure out why you are trading 3 full levels of spellcasting. You are getting 6 teamwork feats over the life of the character.

Because the Hunter has reduced casting, one could simply take a Druid, and mix in 8 levels of fighter for 5 bonus feats.
Then you have a 12th level druid who can wildshape with full options, can cast up to 6th level spells, and has 5 bonus feats (including access to up to 8th level fighter feats)

With boon companion, your AC is only slightly behind.
With a beast rider cavalier, you would instead get tactician, expert trainer, bonus feats, an order, and the cool charge stuff.


waltero wrote:
Foghammer wrote:

Off the wall idea: Ranger and Druid are both too nature-y and well-rounded to try and combine. The Ranger is heavily front-loaded with abilities, and the Druid is capable of so much (wildshaping for melee, 9th level spells, a respectable skill set and number of class skills) that the two of them just don't mesh well. They are complementary, of course, but trying to hybridize them isn't going to give you anything new or even just unique.

And there seems to be a consensus that the Ranger isn't visible in the Hunter at all.

So how about trying to combine the druid with something else entirely? Inquisitor seems to be a popular one. Magus might be good.

Exploring your idea further, since druid and ranger already have overlap, why not remove druid from the hybrid and mesh Ranger with Summoner? You could go with either 4th level or 6th level spellcasting. Pet evolutions could instead be more feats for the pet.

The only downside to this is that the BaB seems like it would be further reduced if combined with another casting class. I think what we need here is for another Druid/Fighter hybrid (as Ranger is now) with a bigger focus on the animal companion (allow it more bonus tricks, give them new abilities) and focus on abilities that truly show case a Hunter or Bounty Hunter (tracking, stealth, combat options, etc).

I'm okay with the Druid Spell List OR the Ranger Spell List. Frankly, depending on what final abilities make it in, I'd be okay with no spell list at all in favor of more flavorful abilities that really hit home the concept of a rugged woodsman or tracker that has extraordinary abilities finding their prey with their animal companion and taking them down.


I've been wanting to play something like this, but this set of abilities is a disappointment. It simply won't be a viable secondary fighter without some additional feats.

I want to play a character that is great outdoors and out of combat, the tracker, the guy who gets you there. The guy who knows how to find and evade. Secondary healer abilities, they'll work in a pinch. Secondary caster for all those cool Druid spells for handling situations outdoors.

Then decent in a fight, be able to build it as a switch hitter. Ranged and melee. If you have the chance to buff you become good in a fight.

Here's my vision for the class.
Great outdoor related abilities and skills, so Bard or Ranger skill points and Pass without a trace, etc.
Full Animal companion
3/4 BAB
Spells as listed in the playtest. Thought I would love to see Lead Blades and Gravity Bow added off the Ranger list.
FEATS! Limited access to the Ranger feat lists.

I've been gaming out combinations of Fighter, Ranger, Paladin with Cleric and Druid for a while. You can make some good melee combatants with those combinations but ranged is really hard because of the lack of feats.

In either case though you STILL come out with something better than the Hunter as described in the playtest.


Also definitely prefer he not be a shapechanger... I do really like animal focus (a guy who runs like a deer when its runnin time, hulks out when its hulkin time, sneaks like a panther when it's sneakin time... swims like a dolphin when it's swimmin time....) but actually making the transformation seems a little cheeze to me.... Wildshape/beastshape/plantform just doesn't 'fit' my concept of a hunter as much as a full on reality bending druid. The more I think about poultices being the 'druidic version of alchemy' the more I like the idea of the class having access to it thematically I suppose... Agree with above that pass without trace totally fits.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Sounds like a similar concept to the Beastlord from EQ, or the White Lion from WAR.
A guy and his animal companion. The companion is resposible for most of the damage, while the PC is a support/buffer/healer of that companion.
The companion also gets some SU stuff, simply because it's not jsut an animal companion, but contains some part of a nature god's essence (ergo is smarter or has more of a fmailiar's bond with the Hunter, and doesn't require being 'pushed').

This could be done here as well, with the existing Hunter, it just needs some tweaking.


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Vincent Takeda wrote:
Also definitely prefer he not be a shapechanger... I do really like animal focus (a guy who runs like a deer when its runnin time, hulks out when its hulkin time, sneaks like a panther when it's sneakin time... swims like a dolphin when it's swimmin time....) but actually making the transformation seems a little cheeze to me.... Wildshape/beastshape/plantform just doesn't 'fit' my concept of a hunter as much as a full on reality bending druid. The more I think about poultices being the 'druidic version of alchemy' the more I like the idea of the class having access to it thematically I suppose... Agree with above that pass without trace totally fits.

I can agree with the Shapeshifter thing, although I think it would be cool to have a shapeshifter class that gives up spellcasting/Companion to focus on the former.

But I would do this with Barbarian/Druid, not Ranger/Druid (Wildshape and wildshape powers instead of rage, big HD, uncanny dodge)

For the Hunter, I think that the animal companion needs to be head and shoulders above a normal druid's companion. Set levels of Hunter that gave permanent stat increases to the Companion would be good.

Increasing the companion to a 1d10 HD would be much appreciated.

The companion should start with an int of 6 like a paladin mount.
I would also like to see them get light armor proficiency as a cavalier mount does.

Since the druid spell list has limited heaaling, it would also be nice to see an ability that can heal the Companion. Summoners get one, annd druids are stuck being 1 level behind on Cure spells. They also do not get access to heal mount.

The companion should be pretty awesome.

The problem with teamwork feats is not that they are bad, but that they require the participation of the hunter, who is a lousy 3/4 BAB and is going to spend most of his/her time casting spells. The Hunter becomes the liability.

So... more focus on the companion.


waltero wrote:
Foghammer wrote:

Off the wall idea: Ranger and Druid are both too nature-y and well-rounded to try and combine. The Ranger is heavily front-loaded with abilities, and the Druid is capable of so much (wildshaping for melee, 9th level spells, a respectable skill set and number of class skills) that the two of them just don't mesh well. They are complementary, of course, but trying to hybridize them isn't going to give you anything new or even just unique.

And there seems to be a consensus that the Ranger isn't visible in the Hunter at all.

So how about trying to combine the druid with something else entirely? Inquisitor seems to be a popular one. Magus might be good.

Exploring your idea further, since druid and ranger already have overlap, why not remove druid from the hybrid and mesh Ranger with Summoner? You could go with either 4th level or 6th level spellcasting. Pet evolutions could instead be more feats for the pet.

This would have my vote, for sure. It would be a much more focused class with a clear niche - wilderness skills, strong companion, and even medium BAB would allow for sufficient combat ability. [If the spell list is dropped down to 4-level, they would need full BAB of course.] Add in a "primitive" archetype and you have the Tarzan niche covered, too - something that was not yet sufficiently possible in Pathfinder.


Lord_Malkov wrote:
Vincent Takeda wrote:
Also definitely prefer he not be a shapechanger... I do really like animal focus (a guy who runs like a deer when its runnin time, hulks out when its hulkin time, sneaks like a panther when it's sneakin time... swims like a dolphin when it's swimmin time....) but actually making the transformation seems a little cheeze to me.... Wildshape/beastshape/plantform just doesn't 'fit' my concept of a hunter as much as a full on reality bending druid. The more I think about poultices being the 'druidic version of alchemy' the more I like the idea of the class having access to it thematically I suppose... Agree with above that pass without trace totally fits.

I can agree with the Shapeshifter thing, although I think it would be cool to have a shapeshifter class that gives up spellcasting/Companion to focus on the former.

But I would do this with Barbarian/Druid, not Ranger/Druid (Wildshape and wildshape powers instead of rage, big HD, uncanny dodge)

For the Hunter, I think that the animal companion needs to be head and shoulders above a normal druid's companion. Set levels of Hunter that gave permanent stat increases to the Companion would be good.

Increasing the companion to a 1d10 HD would be much appreciated.

The companion should start with an int of 6 like a paladin mount.
I would also like to see them get light armor proficiency as a cavalier mount does.

Since the druid spell list has limited heaaling, it would also be nice to see an ability that can heal the Companion. Summoners get one, annd druids are stuck being 1 level behind on Cure spells. They also do not get access to heal mount.

The companion should be pretty awesome.

The problem with teamwork feats is not that they are bad, but that they require the participation of the hunter, who is a lousy 3/4 BAB and is going to spend most of his/her time casting spells. The Hunter becomes the liability.

So... more focus on the companion.

What you're describing sounds more like an Animal Mystic (which may be a more appropriate name and theme for this class).

However, the initial flavor texts make this sound more like a Druid/Fighter (with rogue-like skills). The spells feel shoe-horned in and probably added for simplicity.

There is still something I think we'd all like to see though - what can this class do that the Druid can't already or what a Cleric, Inquisitor, etc can't do with a feat or two?

It sounds like there are two different sets of people commenting on the Hunter; those that want a 3/4 BaB "Mystic" that casts spell and bolsters their AC; and those that want a non-magical woodsman/tracker/bounty hunter type that relies on their wit, cunning and extraordinary ability with both animal and skill set to do what they do.

Personally, with both the flavor text as my reasoning and the fact we have a lot of magic based animal companion classes, I'd like to see a less magical one where the Hunter relies on the land to fight, heal allies, hinder foes, and track.


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Here's a thought for hunter: combat styles, except that unlike the ranger, they're based around emulation of animal types instead of use of specific weapon combinations. This way, you get some of the wild shape flavor without literal shapechanging, and it can both subsume the teamwork feats and replace the underwhelming animal focus ability.

To emphasize the pet class element, the hunter combat style applies to both the hunter and his companion, and he might have some limited ability to apply bonuses to other party members too.

Some vague possible thoughts here:

* crow: gain Broken Wing Gambit and Swap Places; gain a bonus to Acrobatics; get a bonus to Bluff and Intimidate rolls against any creatures that has wounded a party member in the last day

* dragon: gain Amplified Rage and Wall of Flesh (even if not Small); get a minor rage ability (+2 Str/Con); get a bonus to attack any creature that a party member has wounded in the last day

* rhinoceros: gain Lookout and Tribe Mentality; gain a bonus to natural armor; get a bonus to attacking any creature that has wounded a party member in the last day

* scorpion: gain Paired Opportunists and Seize the Moment; apply a level-based poison to your attacks; get a damage bonus against creatures that you've poisoned

* wolf: gain Outflank and Pack Attack; gain scent within 30 feet; get a bonus to tracking creatures you've wounded in the past day


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Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Roadie, that is essentially what I mentioned up thread, though I focused on the type of tactics involved in conjunction with the animal companion, such as mounted, coursing, ambush, flushing, etc. In fact, I would call them hunting styles and apply them to both the hunter and the animal companion in addition to the teamwork feats. You can pick the style that fits best with the type of animal companion you have.

Silver Crusade

The Hunter needs to expand on what is present to find it's place with the other classes. I feel the best way to do this is to add a few ability's that complement it. Thus lending to it's unique flavor. Over all it dose feel like a Druid/Ranger. The problem I see it dose lack in the ability to do something better then the other two classes.

With the drop in spell casting from a 9th level spells down to 6th. It lacking the spell and ability's of a druid. With it's 3/4 BAB and no self buffs. It falls behind the ranger on there combat role. Not that they should fill the roles as well as the ranger or druid. They do need there own role to fill. There are a few simple fixes I came up with.

First there weapon selection. I recommend moving them to all simple and martial weapons. This will give them enough of a choice in weapons to give them more of a fighting base. With out chaining any thing in there ability to hit better or do more damage. With the exception of getting access to more weapon options.

Second there unique flavor needs to stand out more. Any one with Faiths and philosophy's book and willing to spend 3 feet's can have a animal companion. So if there animal companion is going to be there stick. It needs to be better then it is for giving up level 7-9 spells druid, or Full BAB ranger. There are three ability's I came up with for the hunter to address some of the problems with animal companions. If this is going to be what makes them different then it needs to stand out. Don't get me wrong the shared team work feet's are great. They are not enough to make up for what you give up to be a Hunter.

Level 3 Hunter
Hunters Stamina (EX): The Hunters animal companion gains a bonus to constitution. This bonus is equal to the bonus granted by druid level for strength , and dexterity. This ability dose not stack with other classes that grant animal companions. IE Hunter 5 / Caviler 6 only receives the bonus to Con for the 5 Hunter levels.
(This ability address one of the main problems with animal companions. There lack of higher HP. In the upper levels of play. This will give them just enough extra HP to not get killed/almost killed every fight.)

Level 5 Hunter
Focused Training (Ex): The hunters animal companion gains a bonus feet from the animal companions list of feet's. The animal companion gains an additional feet for every 6 level beyond 5th. (5th,11th, and 17th.)
(Bonus feet's let them pick up a few extra feet's. Making them one of the best animal companions with out chaining any of the core rules about them.)

Level 6 Hunter
Claw and Fang (SU): The hunters animal companions natural attacks are treated as magic for over coming DR, and Incorporeal monsters. At level 11 there natural attacks are treated as silver, and cold iron for over coming DR. At level 16 there attacks are treated as one alignment type that matches the Hunter. The choice is made at the start of each day when they select spells. IE a Hunter that is Lawful Neutral could only select Axiomatic. Why a hunter that was Chaotic Good could chose Good, or Anarchic.
(This over comes the biggest problem with animal companions at high level play. There ability to over come DR. Is one of there biggest draw backs. This opens up animal companions that might normally be over looked due to there inability to deal enough damage to over come DR.)

Grand Lodge

It would be nice to see some "mount teamwork" feats, where if the mount and their master have the feet, they synergize, since many of the animal companions are suitable for riding.

For example, I will be making a gnome hunter with a gecko, for high ground control and trap avoidance. As such, he *has* to be range focused. (Too many 30 foot ceilings in PFS for a melee build.) I am debating getting hunter up to 3, and then then branching into alchemist with boon companion, since there is really only one teamwork feat that seems at all useful to me.


Davick wrote:
The first idea I had for teamwork feats when looking over this was one that made you not provoke to shoot in melee if flanking with your AC and then one that allowed you to take AoOs/gain the flanking bonus against the target.

What's interesting about these ranged teamwork feats will be that they mostly have to assume only one member of the duo is ranged, the other melee, meaning that for the Hunter they'll be fine, but outside of that dynamic, possibly useless. Unless there are feats that provide bonus A if ranged and bonus B if in melee. But that may make them too good compared to the existing teamwork feats.

-

Predisposed Foe
Benefit: When threatened by an enemy that is threatened by an ally with this feat, you do not provoke attacks of opportunity when making ranged attacks.

Advantageous Archer
Prerequisite: Predisposed Foe
Benefit: You threaten squares within 5 feat of you with ranged weapons for the purposes of determining flanking against enemies threatened by an ally with this feat. Any attacks against such an enemy gains a +2 flanking bonus to attack.

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It's easier to get than snap shot or point blank master (especially with the Hunter's bonus feats) but I don't know if it's good enough to be worth it over just drawing a weapon. There's still a good amount of synergy with snap shot. I'll try and think up some that help out an archer at distance, but that's very different from what most teamwork feats are doing right now.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

I wonder if some folks (including myself) weren't expecting more of a melee focused nature/divine summoner, here.

If that's not what the class was intended to be, maybe an archetype?


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

What if the animal companion was a nature spirit, and could change it's shape based on what was needed at the time?
On the sea? Companion changes itself into a shark.
Mountains? a Ram...
It has the same core stats, just modified by the shape it takes.
At later levels let it become a Dire version of that creature.

TL;DR: The companion gets the wildshape...

Designer, RPG Superstar Judge

Thank you to people who've been building characters and testing them in play.

I've also noted some other suggestions (like "mounted teamwork feats," that's a great idea).


Did a bit of playtesting last night. I have to say I love the Hunter, thematically and mechanically. There are a few things I would suggest making a few changes to.

Animal Focus:
Duration: Being able to use only a certain number of times per day, with a set duration, of situational bonuses tends to be a tad problematic. An example that came up in play was the player activated the ability only to only be able to use it for a single round and did not have it available later that adventuring day when it would have proved much more useful.
Suggestion: Change the ability to a set number of rounds per day, similar to a barbarian rage duration or a bardic music performance. Maybe start it off with 4 + Wis Mod rounds per day, or similar and have it increase every level by a set amount. This will allow flexibility on the player's part as to when and how long the ability is active. Having a feat to increase the rounds per day is a good idea.

Bonus Type: The type of bonus that the ability uses (specifically enhancement) feels restrictive and, just like with the spells that boost stats (bull's strength, etc), this ability will lose its value as the character levels and acquires better magic items. Especially since this class also gets access to those spells. I expect the choice of enhancement bonus was intentional on the developer's part, since other sources of stat bonuses can be used to stack scores higher than intended at a low level.
Suggestion: Change the bonus to morale. We already have a precendant with the barbarian rage boosting and we definitely do not want a Hunter to multiclass with barbarian to stack these bonuses together (this would happen if left enhancement. I've already had players suggest doing this). The Hunter and their companion are a two member 'pack' and thematically, a morale bonus can show this kind of bond better than an enhancement.

The snake animal focus in particular needs to be addressed. Once the character has a +2 weapon, half of this focus is useless. Changing it to a morale bonus to attacks of opportunity would be better in the long run.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Sorry Sean, just throwing out ideas.
I hope to get some playtesting in this weekend.


DeathlessOne wrote:

Did a bit of playtesting last night. I have to say I love the Hunter, thematically and mechanically. There are a few things I would suggest making a few changes to.

Animal Focus:
Duration: Being able to use only a certain number of times per day, with a set duration, of situational bonuses tends to be a tad problematic. An example that came up in play was the player activated the ability only to only be able to use it for a single round and did not have it available later that adventuring day when it would have proved much more useful.
Suggestion: Change the ability to a set number of rounds per day, similar to a barbarian rage duration or a bardic music performance. Maybe start it off with 4 + Hunter level rounds per day? That would give 5 rounds (nearly a minute) at start of play. Increases in duration as the Hunter levels. Total of 24 rounds at level twenty, which is equivalent to 4 minutes a day but gives the player the flexibility of use. Having a feat to increase the rounds per day is a good idea.

Bonus Type: The type of bonus that the ability uses (specifically enhancement) feels restrictive and, just like with the spells that boost stats (bull's strength, etc), this ability will lose its value as the character levels and acquires better magic items. Especially since this class also gets access to those spells. I expect the choice of enhancement bonus was intentional on the developer's part, since other sources of stat bonuses can be used to stack scores higher than intended at a low level.
Suggestion: Change the bonus to morale. We already have a precendant with the barbarian rage boosting and we definitely do not want a Hunter to multiclass with barbarian to stack these bonuses together (this would happen if left enhancement. I've already had players suggest doing this). The Hunter and their companion are a two member 'pack' and thematically, a morale bonus can show this kind of bond better than an enhancement.

The snake animal...

I love these suggestions.

To me the Animal aspect is the biggest thing that pops out to me about this class as people have always wanted a spell-less beastshaper, but it seems very limiting for a nearly defining trait.


Malwing wrote:

I love these suggestions.

To me the Animal aspect is the biggest thing that pops out to me about this class as people have always wanted a spell-less beastshaper, but it seems very limiting for a nearly defining trait.

I agree. Animal Focus is the highlight of the Hunter class, closely followed by the Hunter Tactics. Animal Aspect might even be a more ... flavorful name for the Animal Focus ability. I adore the ability to share your Animal Focus with your companion (and previous posters were right, that is already mentioned in the ability description) as well as your teamwork feats.


First of all, I only see the class, i didnt have time to play it yet. So... have this in mind when you read the post xD.

I want to say that its really half ranger half druid, and its one of the classed in this book that doesn't kill the core ones. In my opinion the druid spells are not very powerfull and normaly you use them to buff, so you dont need a high wisdom to improve the DCs. But there is the thing, you can use the spells to buff yourself or your mates, and when you reach certain level, you will probably buy some belt that improves your STR, DEX or CON... so, what happens with the animal focus?

I think the bonus of this skill is totally useless when you reach the level 4. In my opinion the Animal Focus is a strong reason to make a hunter. Its the skill that puts a real improvement to your character to face the medium BAB. But you can make the same with a second level spell or a wondorous item... and im not only refering to the STR, DEX and CON enhancement... swim, climb, scent... you can do all of this with low level spells, and last more than 1 minute. Yes, you have to prepare and cast them with a standar action, but still worth the time against the Animal Focus.

In my opinion, the bonus of this skill would be much better if it stacks with others, making the hunter more flexible to any situation.

PD: Srry for my english, its not my language.

The Exchange

I'm not a huge fan of the animal focus and such as they are, but I'm liking the way things are going for the Hunter.

If there is some good ranged/mounted teamwork feats that would open up a lot of options. Even more so if the Hunter get's an increased list of weapons(Or some more feats are included in the book that makes more simple weapons more viable - daggers/slings!). Something like being able to flank at range would be excellent!

As for Animal Focus, it either needs to get a new bonus type or last a lot longer/have more uses. In addition, I'm really liking the idea of having it also apply to the companion.

I would push for it to a permanent buff that applies to both the hunter and companion, with the hunter getting to choose a new one on each of the levels that they're getting an extra use per day at the moment.

So then its a choice: Do you want to go druid and wildshape a few times a day, or get a lesser effect that lasts all day on yourself and the companion. It would also be cutting down on the bookkeeping of adding a temporary bonus to both yourself and the companion.

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