Investigator and Battle Shaman Level 1 (First Steps 1)

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We just finished a run of First Steps part 1. The other two characters were a Mad Dog Barbarian and iconic Lem. We nearly TPKed due to bad luck, but the new classes did pretty well, other than Alistair (the Investigator)'s relative lack of utility in combat.

First we needed to get a box from an imp. Since he had a trait that said he used logical arguments for diplomacy, Alistair used his infernal logic to talk down the imp, pointing out that it would be better for its own goals to give us the box.

Then, we needed to do simple puzzles for Osirion, which we did.

Then we investigated an old woman to see if her orphanage was worthy of charity. Alistair the investigator used his Knowledge: Local (and inspiration) to know lots of stuff and then came in for a sting operation pretending to be a sketchy guy with business deals for the old woman. Since the other Pathfinders spooked her, she agreed to give Alistair her illicit black market medicines in case there was a search. She also agreed to make the orphanage an alcohol-smuggling checkpoint in exchange for rare liquors.

Last, we searched for a box from the Sczarni and fought three rats. The Mad Dog Barbarian and her moose dropped all of them, though Alistair staggered one with a claw and his flank was needed to drop it. We took no damage from this fight. Then Alistair used Acrobatics to reach the crate and lowered onto the boat with the Shaman and Lem.

On the way back, we were ambushed by the usual ambush. Alistair managed to raise his AC to 21 and took control of the narrows, and Ledford missed on his charge. Larkin rolled a natural 16 to tumble through Alistair's square (he needed the 16 to succeed) and then two consecutive 18s to confirm a critical sneak attack, dropping Alistair to -1 and retaking control of the narrows. The shaman enlarged the mad dog (who was a gnome so was now medium). The mad dog rolled 3, 3, and 5 over three rounds, and Deandre's channels nearly killed unconscious Alistair while Ledford took out the mad dog. The shaman had a battle shaman combo that made him heal for 11 every time without rolling, so he woke up the mad dog, who dropped Ledford from the ground. Then the shaman healed Alistair from -10 (he used inspiration to keep this from being -12 and dead) to 1 hit point. Deandre channeled for 3, and Alistair saved to be at 0, but the mad dog was dropped to -2. Then Lem's sleep took out all but Halli. Halli came back with color spray but failed to cast defensively. Alistair swiped and missed twice. Halli woke up Deandre, but Alistair and the shaman managed to drop her due to a nat 20 AoO crit from Alistair that he spent inspiration to confirm. Then on his own turn Alistair dropped Halli with two claws.

Notably, after the game, an inspired 5 star reroll on Craft Alchemy garnered a 37 Day Job that was nearly a 40 for the Investigator, which was a huge gain in gold.

Analysis below.

Alistair was the best skilled character at level 1 that I have ever seen. The inspired day job was just the icing on the cake. Alistair had something good to add to every skill-based situation, generally as much as the other characters combined. In combat, I sacrificed a lot to give Alistair 16 Strength, so he was quasi-competent, but he didn't even keep up with Lem the bard's sleep or the shaman's uber-cures. The mad dog barbarian was unlucky that Larkin made the Acrobatics and controlled the narrows, which disallowed her from bringing both herself and her moose to bear. When she had both characters, she was also definitely hugely stronger than Alistair (she had +5 to hit for 1d10+4 damage versus Alistair's +3/+3 for 1d4+3 each from claws if he got a full attack, and her moose wasn't terribly strong but added some too when he could fight). She was also a gnome barbarian without rage, so keep that in mind too.

The shaman's player said that he didn't have much to say and that playing level 1 shaman was like any other spellcaster--his spells were awesome, but then he ran out and that was that. He definitely enjoyed healing for 11.

How does an Investigator get claws?

Racially (Tiefling without darkness).

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