Shaman Discussion


Class Discussion

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The Exchange

Crystal Sight actually has a typo in it.

"Her gaze can penetrate a number of feat equal to her shaman level, or 1/12th this thickness of metal."


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
JoelF847 wrote:
First, as a shaman who gets powers from spirits, I was expecting some abilities related to spirits, as in undead, fey, elementals, etc.

I was hoping for the same, something along the lines of the Menhir Savant's spirit sense.

Dark Archive

It is fine the Shaman is MAD with Wis and Cha, there needs to be some penalty for it being such a strong tier 1 class. Lore Shaman need okay Int too, but that can be boosted.

It is very, very strong though, isn't it? Better than Clerics in many respects.

It is cool, and when Paizo publish it properly I want to see lots of fluff for desert or Viking or water Shamans.

Something else positive is that the elemental spirits are actually good! A Waves/Wind Shaman is more than a match for a Storm Druid.

Great class.


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Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

I came into the Advanced Players Guide playtest expecting shaman, a combination of my favourite class (oracle) and a class that combined with it felt like it'd go somewhere awesome (witch) and expect something unique.

I Opened up the playtest, jumped to Shaman and what I saw was a cleric caster with a familiar and slightly altered revelation system. I do not understand why there was a need for another full progression caster with a good spell list. There is already Sorc/Wizard/Witch/Cleric/Oracle/Druid/Arcanist, why another?

I was looking forward to a shamanistic, primal visage of pure nature who commands spirits with their totem and curses/hexes those who are against the shaman. A 1-4 caster or not a caster at all, who gained curses/hexes from a general list, and totemic powers for a specific chosen list, most likely chosen from a list of animals like most shamans devote themselves too. They would be strong enough to be front-line if needed, but wouldn't out pummel the melee warriors (fighter/barbarian/cavalier/paladin, not including those added in this book or alternatives).

I'll review what I saw, expecting them not to change the core class concept entirely just on one person's (but I doubt I'm the only one who dislikes the shaman as it is) preference and I understand that.

The spell list is good, why? because the cleric spell list is a really strong spell list. They also get the similar bonus spells that clerics get from their domains with their spirit list. I see why they chose cleric list because the oracle gets it, but a personalized spell list for the class would have been better, yet I doubt they wanted to deal with another new spell list, as that is probably why they haven't made one this whole book/playtest.

The class stats (skill/day, hit dice, saves, BAB, profs) are all acceptable for the sort of concept/role the shaman portrays. The shaman can be in the front for a few rounds, but wouldn't want to stay there the whole fight due to the lack of shields and heavy armour. The skill ranks are good, even if the list is low because the class is MAD (as others have stated and disliked) and would doubtfully have any more than 12 int.

The familiar is expected because it's one of the witch's major abilities. It's interesting that the familiar gets a buff, chosen based on the spirit you decide upon. I doubt this was needed, but seeing as the buffs aren't that strong it's good and they work with the spirit choice (flame spirit familiar is immune to fire, allowing you to fireball directly on it and not worry).

The hexes are the main issue I have with it, they don't feel like hexes. They feel more like oracle revelation abilities that weren't seen as strong enough to be spirit abilities. Some of the hexes are literally taken from the revelation the spirit is copying and are word for word, even those which are offensive the only difference is that it gets the hex limitation of 1/24hrs per target.

The spirit abilities are either clones of oracle revelations (such as the channel for life spirit or touch of flame for flame spirit) or close enough.

Not much of the class was new except for new wording for cloned abilities/keywords.

I can see the class as being good and because it's so close to oracle it's basically choose which one is better out of the 2 for the spirit/mystery (battle is better for oracle because they get martial weapon and heavy armour prof, whilst life would be better as a shaman because they get a familiar to cast cure spells through). The shaman doesn't look nor feel like an oracle/witch, to me it's an oracle who decided to exchange the curse for a familiar (because that's an equal trade...) and somehow speed up the spell progression one level by doing so.

I can see people playing it and I can also see people going "Why ever play this if I can choose an oracle" or "Why ever play an oracle if I can choose this".

This review/critique might sound harsh, but good feedback isn't feedback that's just all good, it's feedback that is straight to the point and expresses your unsugar-coated views. To me I can see myself playing the shaman as it is, but I'd play it as an oracle archetype, not a shaman, which I doubt is the intent they wanted to get out of this class.


Why no Ancestor Spirits? I can totally see a shaman summoning a long-dead soul from the fumes of her cauldron to make questions. i can see her create fetishes too.
Only light armor and a personalized spell list should be in order too.
Other than that, I'm intrigued.


The spirit feature is more multiclass friendly than the witch's pact, as it grants new spell knowledge at 1st level, then again at 8th and 16th.
I like the way hexes are tied to the spirit feature, so as to limit from the vastness of available hexes.
Bones/Touch of the grave: unholy? What about good bones shamans? It seems incongruous, especially as the class has the usual divine casting restrictions on alignment spells.
Lore/Benefit if wisdom and mental acuity: these seem to work at cross purposes. Wisdom instead of Intelligence for skills, then a boosted Intelligence?


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Well, I can definitely say that the Shaman is a class I've been looking forward to even before it was announced!

A minor gripe, I wish the Hexes had a different name to them. I understand that this is a Witch hybrid, but I think it'd help this stand out a bit more with just a small name change.

Second, I'm a little surprised to see that this seems to be having a lot of "spirits" that seem to be pretty much rehashed oracle revelations. I was expecting to see names like Wolf Spirit (and other animal names) and maybe even terrain specific spirits (Swamp Spirit, ooooh!). Instead we got Life, Lore, and just a general Nature spirit... seems a little too oracley to me. I figured a Shaman would focus mainly on naturey and undeathy themes and expand more than just "nature spirits."

And as some others have said, I wasn't expecting a standard familiar instead of a voodoo doll or the like.

Mechanically, this class looks like a lot of fun. But it seems to have too much "Oracle + Witch = Shaman" feel to it instead of its own interesting creature. Flavor-wise, I'd love to see more fluff to back up the feeling of a wise Native-Americany witchdoctor communing with the spirits of the long dead and the animals still living.

Scarab Sages

I would really like to be able to see this guy pick up Angels and demons exc for the improved fam feat.
Even the elusive Archon, Lantern.
I think it would be really rp ish for a good Shamen to have an Archon, Lantern familiar.


This was a class that had me pretty confused from the get go, especially as this name is already used for a type of druid with a specific animal totem. Then, we call it an oracle/witch hybrid. But it prepares spells from the cleric list with an hour of meditation an based of their Wis, from the entire list, like a cleric or druid. Sure, it has a familiar and hexes which are witchy, but the only oracle flavor I see at all is that the "spirits" are named for Oracle mysteries- which makes me wonder if it's not meant to be just another way for oracular mysteries to "manifest" or grant power to agents, and is the most interesting piece of this I see so far. I'd definitely like to see some changes, if nothing else but to bring this away from being the tri-fusion it feels like currently. Maybe make it spontaneous, or a "prepared spontaneity" at least, like the Arcanist? Or just change over the Spirits from being Mysteries to Patrons or Domains instead and drop the oracular bits all together (though I get the thematic tie of oracles speaking with spirits).


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Re-posting part of a question which I had originally posted in the Paizo Blog thread:

Some immediate questions which sprang to mind when skimming the document ...

Will the Shaman class eventually get Spirits which will support all currently available Oracle mysteries? As it stands, there are more Oracle mysteries in Ultimate Magic (including some of my favourites), not to mention Golarion setting products like People of the North, Inner Sea Magic, AP 71/RoW 5, and Faiths and Philosophies.

In general, my reaction is: looks good! :)


Probably one of my favorite so far. Wandering spirit is definitely a nice versatility trait that feels organic.

Like others have said seems a bit too close to oracle but I don't particularly mind it.


Wind Spirit: Vortex spells. "Whenever the shaman confirms a critical hit against an opponent with a spell".

It has previously been stated that a critical hit is a critical hit, and we shouldn't read anything into variations of language. So, "when you score a critical hit with a spell" - this might make it a worthwhile dip for a Magus.

Scarab Sages

Question 1
Table 1-8 says that the shaman should get wandering hex in level 14, but in wandering hex it states, that you get one hex in level 6 and the other in level 12.

if you follow the text of the class a shaman gains nothing in lvl 13 to 15.

is this a mistake?

Question 2

under shamans familiar it states: "A shaman can select any familiar
available to wizards, although her familiar is augmented
by the power of her chosen spirit (as noted below). Once
selected, the familiar cannot be changed."

Are you allowed to take improved familiar?

"If a familiar is lost or dies, it can be replaced after
24 hours through a special ritual that costs 500 gp per
shaman level. The ritual takes 8 hours to complete."

replaced fammiliar must then be of same type?


Question: Does the Fire Nimbus hex from the Flame spirit require the Shaman to see or other pinpoint the target's location, or can the Shaman just spam it if it's trying to catch the invisible target at random?


I agree with what a lot of people are saying about the name of the hex feature and battle wanting martial proficiency badly.

I would also very much like to see archetypes or something that give access to the druid or witch spell lists instead of, or parts of them in addition to, the cleric list.

Scarab Sages

Many hexes use charisma to set their number of uses per day. This seems to be the only use of charisma by the class. I can't help but wonder if its a find-replace error from an earlier in house version of the doc. I sort of reads like one.

Specially I'm looking at the following:

Healing Spirit
Enemies' Bane
Paragon of Battle
Touch of the Grave
Touch of Flame
Starburn
Stardust
Manifest (heavens)
Channel*
Quick Healing
Arcane Enlightenment
Brain Drain
Confusion Curse
Share Knowledge
Entangling Curse
Friend to Animals
Life Leach
Touch of Acid
Wave Strike
Sparking Aura
Shocking Touch

Its seems really odd to set the number of uses or duration on one stat (cha) and the DCs on a different stat (wisdom). As my roomate observed its entirely possible to build a shaman that uses charisma not at all by avoiding these abilities. What is the intent?

*Channel is the only ability that seems like it might reasonably require charisma (since it works off cha for everyone). It however has other issues I'll address in another post.


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The manifest ability from the heavens spirit is... interesting. I realize there's about a 0.0001% chance of a level 20 shaman dying in actual play, ever, but if it does, this is apparently what happens:

"Should she die, she is reborn 3 days later in the form of a star child, who matures over the course of 7 days (treat as the reincarnate spell)."

What exactly is a "star child?" The closest I can think of would be a Shining Child, and those have way too much inborn stuff to just dump on a PC as a prize for dying.

Having to sit things out for 10 days seems a little severe when every other similar self-reincarnate ability brings you back the next day. They also tend to explain where you find yourself popping back in.

I'm also not really sure what text there is left in the reincarnate spell that can be applied if there's a specific form you're ending up in without any specified racial stats and you're being literally reborn... I guess wherever the nearest pregnancy-capable humanoid happens to be (which is somehow less weird than how the spell works).

Dark Archive

Alright I have read thru the Shaman, as I like spellcasters best. I was hoping for the curses but they are not there, I like the oracle curses. I also wanted to use bonded items not just have familiars, I was wondering how the bonded witch would work as an archetype if items do not get allowed in final installment. My concerns so far just from reading:

Battle Spirit – Nice physicals but not really anything else. I was hoping for more of an ability to do damages in different ways like how the battle oracle gets maneuver mastery, weapons mastery, and skill at arms.

Bones Spirit – I like Grave Sight and the manifest

Flame Spirit – Nice spells, nice hexes in Fire Nimbus and Ward of Flame

Heaven Spirit – Nice Spells. All hexes are good to great. The spirit familiar specials are great. Not so fond of the Spirit Ability.
Life Spirit – Deny Succor, Life Sight, and Enhanced Cures are good. If you want to make a great healer there is not a better option really anywhere.

Lore Spirit – I love Automatic Writing which is now a spirit ability. Very nice spells until 6th. Brain Drain is mean but could be meaner by not allowing the target to use that skill for a time equal to the Shamans Charisma modifier too. A very nice if high potential to become broken manifest.

Nature Spirit – I like how the appearance changes depending on where the shaman is from. Not too fond of the spells except the level 3 and 6. Friend to Animals adds more spells which is always good. The Life Leech while excellent I feel should be in the Life Spirit hexes. Speak with Animals and entangle are nice, I like the Erosion a lot. Natures Whisper is only good if you build your character for it but since the spells come from Wisdom having a high Wisdom is important anyway. The True Spirit Ability granting an Animal Companion for a Familiar is a great boon. Fast Healing and the Cocoon Manifest are inspirational.

Stone Spirit – Crystal Sight is very useful. Lodestone is good but I don’t see how Metal Curse is useful beyond a minus to their AC, I Was wondering if there would be a way to combine these?

Waves Spirit – Why if it is waves do they have cold? They should just make a cold spirit! I am sure they could find one more hex and a different 4th level spell for water. Enough ranting. Except for the 4th, good themed spells. Crashing Waves is nice. Water Sight very nice at higher levels. The spirit ability and greater spirit ability are spot on for what something based on water should be.

Wind Spirit – Notice how only the greater spirit ability, true spirit ability, manifest, and familiar have electricity and the familiar doesn’t fly? I am sure something better can be done.

I understand they do not want the Shaman to be the same as the Oracle but why not have the mysteries for the oracle be the same as the Hexes for the Shaman to provide more options and save on room?

In conclusion, It is redundant to say with each spirit “spirit class feature or wandering spirit class feature”, “greater spirit class feature or greater wandering spirit class feature”, and true spirit class feature or true wandering spirit class feature” when the rules at the beginning for Wandering Spirit, Greater Wandering Spirit, and True Wandering Spirit cover it, just for brevity.

More on the other new classes once I read thru them. Then I will add a playing notes section too.


So far my favorite class. There are a few things to change (like choosing between charisma or wisdom) but it has a very good gameplay and roleplay! It's filling a good concept!


Given that shamans have a relationship with a spirit force, rather than just being really resolute, I could see making them Charisma casters.


I just converted a Wrath of the Righteous villain from oracle into shaman - see the stat-block here. (spoilers)

As has already been mentioned, the spirit ability for Battle seems off-theme. I was expecting something along the lines of a martial or bardic ability.

Overall, I really like the Shaman. The wandering spirit and spirit magic abilities are fantastic.


RJGrady wrote:
Given that shamans have a relationship with a spirit force, rather than just being really resolute, I could see making them Charisma casters.

A Charisma-based divine caster would be pretty unique.


Thanis Kartaleon wrote:
RJGrady wrote:
Given that shamans have a relationship with a spirit force, rather than just being really resolute, I could see making them Charisma casters.
A Charisma-based divine caster would be pretty unique.

You mean the oracle?

Dark Archive

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I was just hoping if the intent was to be a MAD class, at least change the casting stat to int to keep it between what the two base classes were based on. Otherwise I think the Oracle cheated on the witch with the cleric... >_>

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

So initial impression upon starting reading is that the shaman is either meant to be something akin to a Shinto priest-drawing power from a belief in concept that everything has a spirit and appealing to them might bring them power- and the most round about way to make a druid (a divine spellcaster that draws power from the natural elements of the world and created from the oracle and witch class).

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

So quick question, can a witch take any of the shaman hexes as part of their natural progression?

Also when a shaman with the bone spirit uses their shedding soul ability do they leave their body behind or does all of them just become ethereal?


I am maybe odd in that I really only care about the Heavens spirit of the Shaman. I love the flavor built in (the thing with the eyes is very cool, and the familiar is great as well).

What I don't like are some of the abilities:

Enveloping Void - flavorful and uniquie, and it feels like a Hex.
Guiding Star - I hate this one. It will never be picked/used in many campaigns, but in the ones it is used in its much more powerful than other Hexes. I'd just switch it out with the 'awesome display' revelation rom the Oracle (which loses a lot of its power due to how MAD the shaman is). That would also feed more into the heaven's shaman being 'controllery'
Heaven's Leap - This is really cool and flavorful, and the power level is appropriate. But it doesn't feel like a Hex.
Lure of the Heavens - This should just outright grant flying at 10th level (or 12th, or 14th, or whatever). Leaving it at a 'x minutes/day' thing makes it very at higher levels
Starburn - A few of the spirits have an ability like this - it looks good to me. An alternative would be reflavoring it as 'Voidburn' or something and having it do cold damage
Stardust - this feels more like a hex than 'Heavens Leap'. Maybe switch the two, modifying power level as appropriate
Void Adaption - Good and flavorful
Phantasmagoric Display - I'm on the fence about this. On the one hand, the spell is good and worth it, on the other hand ... doesn't seem very flavorful
Manifest - the saving throws should be based on WIS
Spirit Familiar - love the flavor/power level of this

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

On the talk of the heavens spirit option I do have to ask if the stardust ability is supposed to be completely unusable on a blind character or just the penalties to perception and attack?


doc the grey wrote:
On the talk of the heavens spirit option I do have to ask if the stardust ability is supposed to be completely unusable on a blind character or just the penalties to perception and attack?

It seems frankly silly that it cannot be used to outline a blind character, but that is how it is RAW. I will personally be ruling it as affecting them as probably intended, and mention as such in any reports.

Lantern Lodge

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The wind shaman is lovely and flavourful, but mechanically seems weaker in comparison to some of the others.

The clairaudience ability of Windsight is nice - but round per level is too shot to be of actual use (when are you ever going to know exactly which 6 seconds of a distant conversation to eavesdrop?)

Wind ward - 20% miss chance for 1/r level is weak. Suggest up the duration (significantly - maybe one active at a time but indefinite?)

Vortex spells - would be nice if twinned with spirit spells that required attack roll, as stands very unlikely to ever happen

Air barrier - like this one :-) - though it isn't unique

Sparking aura - Interesting, but the cha-dependence and 1/r per *two* levels hurt!

Looking at the whole package It feels like a "storm shaman" and a "end shaman" have been rolled together.

Also, thematically, this spirit really feels lost without access to any flying - not even fly as a spirit spell!! Air and Wind domain clerics get air walk, wind oracles get a flying revalation and witches get a flying hex. Poor land-bound wind shamans!! :-)

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Lyee wrote:
doc the grey wrote:
On the talk of the heavens spirit option I do have to ask if the stardust ability is supposed to be completely unusable on a blind character or just the penalties to perception and attack?
It seems frankly silly that it cannot be used to outline a blind character, but that is how it is RAW. I will personally be ruling it as affecting them as probably intended, and mention as such in any reports.

Yeah I feel like that is a typo they will have to be correcting here at some point.


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They wanted to get the APG spirits converted over for the playtest, but that doesn't necessarily mean there'll be no UM ones.

I too want Time and Ancestors.

....

With the caveat that I'm just a freelancer and my word isn't necessarily hire Paizo will rule, I intended for Stardust to be used against blind opponents. I'll send a note on about that. (Also, awesome display has quite a few issues for a prepared caster, since these guys don't get spirit spells in slots other than the spirit spell slot, that means AD would be mostly useless. So I didn't copy it from Heavens.)

....

Finally, the use of a Charisma is fully intentional for this class, so it mimics the cleric's requirement for Charisma to power channel energy.


I agree that it's very strange that Wind shamans don't get flight. They should get some kind of flight hex - it's very odd that Wind oracles are by far the best fliers of all the Mysteries while Wind shamans don't get flight until Winds of Vengeance at level 18.

I disagree about the utility of Windsight - my Wind Oracle has used that a ton of times, though it is usually better for seeing than listening - very nice for peeking around corners in dungeons to check for guards and the like, or for viewing an outside area from above to look for landmarks.


Sporge wrote:
I was just hoping if the intent was to be a MAD class, at least change the casting stat to int to keep it between what the two base classes were based on. Otherwise I think the Oracle cheated on the witch with the cleric... >_>

Cheating on the witch with a cleric? Scandelous!


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Overall, I think the shaman class is fairly well done. I think the wandering spirit adds fantastic flavor change potential for a character.

The following are changes I think would improve upon the flavor.

- Use the druid spell list instead of the cleric spell list. This adds a nature/elemental "shaman" theme instead of the deity themed cleric/oracle list. This would add a second full caster using the druid list instead of a third full caster class using the cleric list. This would be a huge step towards feeling like a whole new class rather than a re-mash of the oracle.

- The witch is under represented. There are currently two spirits allowed: permanent and wandering. Allow the shaman to pick one spirit from the current oracle themed spirits and the second spirit from a new witch patron theme spirit. Allow the shaman to pick which (oracle themed or witch themed) spirit is the permanent and which is the wandering spirit.

- Add more witch-flavored hexes through the various witch patron themed spirits.

- The "hex" ability feels 90% "revelation". Calling the power "hex" feels contrived to force a witch-like feel.

- Add in the ability to fore go "hex" and allow it to instead be placed into familiar amping abilities.

An example list of some of those potential abilities:

- Tough Familiar - the familiar has the same hitpoints as its master
- Recall Commune - the master can commune with the familiar for one minute to recall 1 previously cast spell (once per day per 5 levels)
- Improved Familiar - just as the Improved Familiar feat
- Companion Familiar - familiar acts like an animal companion (requires Improved Familiar)
etc.

- Option the "familiar" to be a "fetish" (some item to commune thru with the ability of an arcane bond) or a "totem" (summonable immobile item with no powers that simply allow the shaman to do those class related things)

Lantern Lodge

Corlindale wrote:

I agree that it's very strange that Wind shamans don't get flight. They should get some kind of flight hex - it's very odd that Wind oracles are by far the best fliers of all the Mysteries while Wind shamans don't get flight until Winds of Vengeance at level 18.

I disagree about the utility of Windsight - my Wind Oracle has used that a ton of times, though it is usually better for seeing than listening - very nice for peeking around corners in dungeons to check for guards and the like, or for viewing an outside area from above to look for landmarks.

I might be reading it wrong but I think it only lets you hear - not the clairvoyance bit :-)

I guess you could listen round a corner at what guards are saying but r/level is still very short


You are right, I totally missed that change!

Then I agree with you, it's mostly useless :-)

Lantern Lodge

Cheapy wrote:


....

Finally, the use of a Charisma is fully intentional for this class, so it mimics the cleric's requirement for Charisma to power channel energy.

That hurts shamans far more than clerics. Clerics can get by with few channels/day and use them solely for healing. The hexes of the shaman are far more important for the overall playability of the shaman.

By the logic above the Cleric domain powers should be linked to Charisma. Instead they are linked to the main stat - wisdom.


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It is looking quite nice so far, though it is incredibly MAD. You need Wis for casting and Cha for some abilities. Beyond that the Shaman seems to have quite a few abilities keyed towards melee combat, which makes Str a must as well and makes Con more important as well. The low reflex saves makes dumping Dex a bad idea. Basically the only stat you could possibly dump is Int.

The fact that it's MAD in and of itself isn't bad, but when you need 4 out of 6 stats and of the 2 remaining can't afford to one of them too low I think the MAD has gone a bit too far.

Which brings me to the Lore Shaman. You get the ability to get Sorc/Wiz spells, which is really cool, but you need Int for it to get anything decent. It becomes even weirder when while this relies on Int you have another ability that actually allows you to replace Int by Wis for all skillchecks. Seems odd to me. And it only gets stranger when you see the Lore Shaman gets inherent boosts to Intelligence.


I tried an experiment, after noticing the extreme similarity of the Shaman and the Oracle... and rebuilt my Oracle instead by using the Shaman class.

The result? Nearly an identical character. The only difference is that he has access to two mysteries instead of just 1(Which he can SWITCH OUT every day, omg the versatility...), and higher level spells, and prepares instead of casts spontaneously.

Pretty much just a straight up upgrade in every conceivable way.

Is this class supposed to completely render the Oracle irrelevant?


Geremy Buss wrote:

I tried an experiment, after noticing the extreme similarity of the Shaman and the Oracle... and rebuilt my Oracle instead by using the Shaman class.

The result? Nearly an identical character. The only difference is that he has access to two mysteries instead of just 1(Which he can SWITCH OUT every day, omg the versatility...), and higher level spells, and prepares instead of casts spontaneously.

Pretty much just a straight up upgrade in every conceivable way.

Is this class supposed to completely render the Oracle irrelevant?

Advantages of the oracle:

Spont casting. More revelations than the Shaman gets hexes. More spells per day. Curse. Much less MAD.

Advantages of the Shaman:

Gets full spell list. Can swap around hexes/spirits for massive flexibility. Gets both the spirit upgrades AND hexes, where an oracle just gets revelations. Level earlier spell progression.

Does the Shaman utterly eclipse the Oracle? No. There are still builds that the Oracle might thematically and mechanically work better for. Especially relevant in a game where stat-boosting items are rarer and perhaps a lower point buy.

Is the Shaman probably 'stronger' on average? I'd say so. The flexibility of Wandering stuff and mix of Spirit powers and Hexes gives an awful lot to them.

It's worth noting that the combination of more spells per day and spont. casting gives the oracle much more ability to have the spell ready for an unexpected situation, especially if said spell is needed more than once to solve the situation. For a 'caster' lean on things, Oracle might still hold stronger, and Shaman for a larger focus on the Spirits (compared to a Mystery), and builds using attack actions.


I'm still wondering why the oracle/witch hybrid is a reskinned cleric. If there's some kind of general rule that prepared divine casters have to use Wisdom, I'm a little perturbed.

I would totally reverse it, and have the shaman be a spontaneous witch, rather than a preparation oracle.

Have the main spirit be a source of extra spells, and the main source of your hexes, as well as a general pool of thematically appropriate witch hexes.

Have the wandering spirit be one large buff, rather than a menu of possible hexes and extra spells to change between every day. Feels like too much bookkeeping.


Renchard wrote:
I'm still wondering why the oracle/witch hybrid is a reskinned cleric. If there's some kind of general rule that prepared divine casters have to use Wisdom, I'm a little perturbed.

Yes actually, and prepared arcane is intellect and spontaneous is charisma.

Spontaneous witch would be bleh imo. Doesn't have the power to buff others so much and strengthen yourself as much the cleric spell list either, which is pretty nifty for the guy calling spirits to help you/himself.


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Needing two ability scores is not draconianly MAD. It's needing two. As a full caster. Most classes need three or four, and that's the norm.

The vast majority of charisma-needing abilities are the Spirit Abilities, which are analogous to Channel Energy for the cleric. Charisma isn't taken into the saving throws at all, it's all uses and rounds that the abilities last.


And not all of the classes take equal amounts from their constituent classes. The shaman and the hunter are probably the best examples of this. The Shaman steals heavily from the flavor of the witch, and some of their mechanics. Making pacts with ephemeral beings to gain power is very witch-y.

Although, tbh, the name hex did through me for a loop when I first read it, but once I saw that some of them were unlimited use powerful magics, I was more OK with it.


MrSin wrote:
Renchard wrote:
I'm still wondering why the oracle/witch hybrid is a reskinned cleric. If there's some kind of general rule that prepared divine casters have to use Wisdom, I'm a little perturbed.

Yes actually, and prepared arcane is intellect and spontaneous is charisma.

Spontaneous witch would be bleh imo. Doesn't have the power to buff others so much and strengthen yourself as much the cleric spell list either, which is pretty nifty for the guy calling spirits to help you/himself.

Meh. The only reason he's a "buffer" is because they chose to use the cleric spell list as the casting spine. I can just as easily see a shaman that summons spirits to possess and attack his enemies.

If they do decide to keep the shaman as a cleric variant, I hope they at least witch it up a little more.

Or maybe use the arcanist mechanic? That would be fun! Prepare a small subset of cleric spells each day, as well as the spells you get from your two spirits?


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

I'm on the wagon with the Shaman's hexes not really being hexes, they're revelations from Oracle mysteries let's just call it like it is. That said I enjoy some of the things the class is attempting to do. I think when it comes to this hybrid though I'd much rather see Witch Hexes and Oracle Revelations be the primary power of the class as opposed to it's spell casting.

What I mean by that is I think I would be more excited by this class if it actually combined the hexes from witch, opening up the Extra Hex feat if you wanted to go that route, and also having revelations based on their bound spirit. Because the Spirit you've bound granting you powers based on what it's revealed to you feels like Revelations, not hexes. I think having a single permanent spirit is awesome, but I'd love to see more than one wandering spirit.

An older 3PP the Encyclopedia Divine's "Shaman Call of the Wild" I feel did an ok job at presenting a format for having multiple spirits. Now I wouldn't go down the rabbit hole they did, but I think maybe having Wandering Spirit scale upwards in number would be neat.

So at 4th she gains one wandering spirit. Then at 12th she can bind 2 and one of them grants it's greater power. Finally at 20th she can bind 3 and one gives it's true power, one gives it's greater, and the last is the standard power.

Edit: Also I've been kinda meh about the spell list choices made so far in the playtest. I'd rather have oracle revelations with the witch list as opposed to a few witchy things with a cleric spell list.


Don't know if it has been said, but the third sentence in the Shaman's Familiar entry refer to the witch:

"Familiars also aid a witch by granting her skill bonuses."

I'm sure it would have been caught later, but i thought i might as well post it.


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Since many of them are supernatural abilities, like hexes, while others are more like revelations, maybe a new term would be nice. Gifts?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I'm fine with the term Hexes... it's shamanny enough for me.

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