Revised Swashbuckler Discussion


Class Discussion

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Silver Crusade

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Re: swift/immediate action bottleneck:-

Dodging Panache: change from 'not a 5-foot step' which requires an immediate action to 'really is a 5-foot step, which isn't an action at all.

Opportune Parry and Riposte: keep parry as an AoO, change riposte from 'immediate action' to 'once per round, after a successful parry...'

Kip-Up: is a move action (fine) but spend 1 Panache to kip-up as a swift action. If you spend 1 Panache there is ne need to make it a swift action to avoid abuse; just make it a free action if you spend 1 Panache.

Menacing Swordplay: fine as is (swift).

Precise Strike: the extra damage as a swift is fine, but I'd happily lose that extra damage entirely to get the chance to multiply the damage on a crit.

Superior Feint: this actually should be a swift instead of a standard! This would allow the swash to benefit from his own feints. Y'know, just like an actual fencer!

Dizzying Defense: can someone explain this to me? This ability allows you to fight defensively as a swift action instead of a standard action, but the choice to fight defensively doesn't cost any action at all! It just allows you to fight defensively while attacking or full attacking. Does this ability allow you to attack (defensively) as a swift action? That'd be great! But I don't think that's what they mean! Help me!

Charmed Life: this shouldn't use any action at all.

Thoughts?


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Malachi Silverclaw wrote:
Dizzying Defense: can someone explain this to me? This ability allows you to fight defensively as a swift action instead of a standard action, but the choice to fight defensively doesn't cost any action at all! It just allows you to fight defensively while attacking or full attacking. Does this ability allow you to attack (defensively) as a swift action? That'd be great! But I don't think that's what they mean! Help me!

Huh...you're right. That makes no sense at all. Fighting defensively can be a standard or full round action, since it's just a modified attack. It would be cool if you could make an attack as a swift action and get an AC bonus until your next turn, but this looks more like a mistake to me.


Malachi Silverclaw wrote:
Dizzying Defense: can someone explain this to me? This ability allows you to fight defensively as a swift action instead of a standard action, but the choice to fight defensively doesn't cost any action at all! It just allows you to fight defensively while attacking or full attacking. Does this ability allow you to attack (defensively) as a swift action? That'd be great! But I don't think that's what they mean! Help me!

This originally was use Total Defense as a Swift Action and still be able to Full Attack in the same round. Something was missed in the change. Good find!


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Malachi's suggestions sound great to me. Although, I honestly wish I could keep riposting (multiple times in a round) up to my number of available AoO's via burning extra panache... but perhaps that'd be too strong.

Precise Strike: Would it be too powerful to have both options? Spend a Panache as a swift action to deal double your level as precision damage...or spend 1 panache and have it deal your level in damage that can multiply on crit? (seems a bit strong to give that much flexibility tbh. Having cake and eating it too). Or Perhaps leave it as is, and later on in the class they can start multiplying the extra damage on crit? (as a new level 16 or 19 ability?)

I am also confused about Dizzying Defense.


Here's a radical idea for Dizzying Defense: What if it allowed you to give yourself an (Ex) version of Mirror Image? It'd be a thematically appropriate ability that's effective without being overpowered, after all it's duplicating a 2nd-Level spell that Magi and Paladins (with Unsanctioned Knowledge) can use. Nor is it redundant, as the spell version is a self-only buff.

Quickened Mirror Image (without a rod) becomes available at level 11 for a Wizard, 13 for a typical Eldritch Knight, and 16 for the Magus, so this would seem to be a level-appropriate ability.

As an (Ex) ability that doesn't actually create illusory images it would not be countered by True Seeing — But level 15 is right when the party gains access to Mind Blank anyways.

Quote:


Hard to Pin Down

At 15th level, as a swift action while fighting defensively with a light or one-handed piercing melee weapon in one hand, the swashbuckler can spend 1 panache point to gain the effects of a Mirror Image spell with a caster level equal to his Swashbuckler level. The effect ends immediately if the Swashbuckler stops fighting defensively.

As this is an (Ex) ability, no actual images are created — The Swashbuckler achieves the same effect through clever feinting and sheer agility. Therefore, the ability is not countered by True Seeing or any similar effect. In all other aspects, this ability behaves as the spell.

The panache cost of this ability cannot be reduced by Signature Deed or any other effect.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Even if they don't change Precise Strike to not use panache. You could always take Signature Deed for it at 11th level (I know a long time but still)


On our playtest here on the forums a question came up:

When exactly Dodging Panache comes in? When you have to declare it? Before the enemy rolls or can you do it after?

The exact situation: an enemy attacked, I tried parrying it and failed (I had declared in the previous post and already rolled the dice). Since it's a PBP, there's no delay before the DM announces the intent to attack and rolls the hit (and damage). The enemy hit and the parry attempt failed. But since the DM had already rolled damage, I don't know how to proceed from here.


Rune wrote:

On our playtest here on the forums a question came up:

When exactly Dodging Panache comes in? When you have to declare it? Before the enemy rolls or can you do it after?

The exact situation: an enemy attacked, I tried parrying it and failed (I had declared in the previous post and already rolled the dice). Since it's a PBP, there's no delay before the DM announces the intent to attack and rolls the hit (and damage). The enemy hit and the parry attempt failed. But since the DM had already rolled damage, I don't know how to proceed from here.

RAW it says:

Dodging Panache (Ex): At 1st level, when an opponent attempts a melee attack...

Opportune Parry and Riposte (Ex): At 1st level, when an opponent makes a melee attack...

----

"makes" and "attempts" aren't necessarily keywords (to my knowledge), but it seems like you're supposed to use a Dodging Panache first, (as they are attempting to hit you) and then the Parry if the Dodge fails...which also makes sense from a flavor standpoint.

However the choice to parry is made before the enemy attack roll happens...So I'm not sure.

Liberty's Edge

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Now that the Dex to damage debacle is over, let's focus on the biggest hurdles: mobility and action economy. I like the suggestions so far. how about also being able to ignore difficult terrain during normal movement? The dramatic charge a few pages back was also perfect. Malachi had a good suggestion for the action economy. I'll post my build and detailed ideas later, when I'm not on my phone.


Steven_Evil wrote:

Now that the Dex to damage debacle is over, let's focus on the biggest hurdles: mobility and action economy. I like the suggestions so far. how about also being able to ignore difficult terrain during normal movement? The dramatic charge a few pages back was also perfect. Malachi had a good suggestion for the action economy. I'll post my build and detailed ideas later, when I'm not on my phone.

If I was a dev, I would totally come by right now and say "So...we've had this great idea about giving the swashbuckler Dex to damage. No idea where it came from, probably someone in R&D. What were you guys talking about?" :D


Saves and mobility are my biggest concerns right now. I honestly can't see a SB surviving past 9th level with only Reflex as their good save, unless the GM is particularly soft.

Mobility would be nice. It got some nice buffs, but it's still nothing to write home about.

Suggestions:

- At 3rd level or so, Swashbucklers add Cha modifier to all Acrobatics, Climb and Escape Artist checks.
- Derring-Do adds Swashbuckler level instead of a d6. This makes the ability much more reliable.
- SBs can spend a Panache point as part of their move action to move unimpeded through difficult terrain.
- SBs get the Mobile Fighter's pseudo-Pounce ability at some point.
- At high levels (11+), SB get the ability to spend a panache point to move as a swift action.


Usual Suspect wrote:
I get how Grit works, and Pinach is just Grit by another name. That's why they stack, even though a Swashbuckler cannot take levels in Gunslinger. It's still a crappy tack on that I have to track constantly through the game. And if you can't make a good swashbuckling fighter/rogue, you're doing it wrong.

No, actually. Grit primarily powers utility powers like disarming someone from across the room, or stopping bleed damage, or in one of the better cases, focusing all your damage for a round into a single shot to drop something with disgusting DR, and mainly recharges by killing tough targets. You generally sit on all your grit, waiting for the perfect time to use it and pull off something cool, and don't generally need to worry about any going to waste, because the only time it does so without your knowledge is when you get a 4x crit and something just explodes... and that comes up about as often as having to spend a point to counter a nat 1.

Panache powers basic attack techniques, and recharges fairly constantly through extra wide crits. You always spend it as soon as it becomes available, powering much less impressive techniques that for anyone else would be powered by a nice deep ki pool style mechanic, or just be constantly available via feat (or in the case of precise strike, you're paying just to be average). It feels like a huge waste any time you have full panache and gain a point, because the class is pretty much balanced around their fairly constant use.

Azouth wrote:
Even if they don't change Precise Strike to not use panache. You could always take Signature Deed for it at 11th level (I know a long time but still)

First off, no you can't. It's specifically called out as an exception.

Even if you could, that would involve not taking Signature Deed at level 11 to make Bleeding Wound completely free on every attack (or cost only 1 point if you want stat damage), and you can't as written take that feat twice. It also wouldn't solve the problem of needing to spend a swift action.

Again, the more time I spend with this class, the more obvious it becomes to me that Precise Strike is a trap. At first glance, it looks like it's just free bonus damage out of nowhere, but if you do the math, it isn't doing anything but making up for your off-hand attacks. It already has the nasty downside that it does no damage against creatures which, generally, aren't particularly bothered by piercing attacks to begin with. Then we have the further restriction that you must either give up the ability to do double damage on your crits like everyone else in the world, or ever using any of the other features your class gets, with nothing at all to show for it but using the weapon configuration the class is named after. This is completely nuts, and people really need to start making a bigger deal out of it.

Rune wrote:

On our playtest here on the forums a question came up:

When exactly Dodging Panache comes in? When you have to declare it? Before the enemy rolls or can you do it after?

The exact situation: an enemy attacked, I tried parrying it and failed (I had declared in the previous post and already rolled the dice). Since it's a PBP, there's no delay before the DM announces the intent to attack and rolls the hit (and damage). The enemy hit and the parry attempt failed. But since the DM had already rolled damage, I don't know how to proceed from here.

After the attack is announced, but before it's rolled I would assume, although it is weird that it doesn't specify. Defensive abilities like this always break the flow, so your GM either needs to take the extra step and double check with you, or you just use the honor system, spoiler tag the attack and damage rolls, let you semi-retroactively declare what you're doing.

In the case of dodging panache, it shouldn't be a big deal, because the times where it's worth doing require you to think ahead and set it up, so you can cancel out of a full attack. The AC boost is fairly incidental. With parry/riposte it's a bit trickier.

Liberty's Edge

Lemmy wrote:

Saves and mobility are my biggest concerns right now. I honestly can't see a SB surviving past 9th level with only Reflex as their good save, unless the GM is particularly soft.

Mobility would be nice. It got some nice buffs, but it's still nothing to write home about.

Suggestions:

- At 3rd level or so, Swashbucklers add Cha modifier to all Acrobatics, Climb and Escape Artist checks.
- Derring-Do adds Swashbuckler level instead of a d6. This makes the ability much more reliable.
- SBs can spend a Panache point as part of their move action to move unimpeded through difficult terrain.
- SBs get the Mobile Fighter's pseudo-Pounce ability at some point.
- At high levels (11+), SB get the ability to spend a panache point to move as a swift action.

those sound good too. I really want derring do to be useful. It sounds like it would make for great thematic situations that had a solid chance of working, but it needs help. It needs to scale somehow, maybe like you suggested, or add more d6's as you level. Maybe another d6 every four swash levels?


Malachi Silverclaw wrote:

Re: swift/immediate action bottleneck:-

Dizzying Defense: can someone explain this to me? This ability allows you to fight defensively as a swift action instead of a standard action, but the choice to fight defensively doesn't cost any action at all! It just allows you to fight defensively while attacking or full attacking. Does this ability allow you to attack (defensively) as a swift action? That'd be great! But I don't think that's what they mean! Help me!

Core Rulebook page 184 wrote:
Fighting Defensively as a Standard Action: You can choose to fight defensively when attacking. If you do so, you take a –4 penalty on all attacks in a round to gain a +2 to AC for the same round.
Core Rulebook page 187 wrote:
Fighting Defensively as a Full-Round Action: You can choose to fight defensively when taking a full-attack action. If you do so, you take a –4 penalty on all attacks in a round to gain a +2 dodge bonus to AC for the same round.

as you can see, fighting defensively is not a great answer, and RAW doesn't all you to use it on quite a few different things, including combat maneuvers.

Silver Crusade

Vrog Skyreaver wrote:
Malachi Silverclaw wrote:

Re: swift/immediate action bottleneck:-

Dizzying Defense: can someone explain this to me? This ability allows you to fight defensively as a swift action instead of a standard action, but the choice to fight defensively doesn't cost any action at all! It just allows you to fight defensively while attacking or full attacking. Does this ability allow you to attack (defensively) as a swift action? That'd be great! But I don't think that's what they mean! Help me!

Core Rulebook page 184 wrote:
Fighting Defensively as a Standard Action: You can choose to fight defensively when attacking. If you do so, you take a –4 penalty on all attacks in a round to gain a +2 to AC for the same round.
Core Rulebook page 187 wrote:
Fighting Defensively as a Full-Round Action: You can choose to fight defensively when taking a full-attack action. If you do so, you take a –4 penalty on all attacks in a round to gain a +2 dodge bonus to AC for the same round.
as you can see, fighting defensively is not a great answer, and RAW doesn't all you to use it on quite a few different things, including combat maneuvers.

My point is that if you replace 'standard' with 'swift' then Dizzying Defence allows you to replace 'Fighting Defensively as a Standard Action' with 'Fighting Defensively as a Swift Action'. Brilliant! But since the ability is called Dizzying Defence and not Dizzying Attack I don't think this 'swift action attack' is what they intended.


Malachi Silverclaw wrote:
My point is that if you replace 'standard' with 'swift' then Dizzying Defence allows you to replace 'Fighting Defensively as a Standard Action' with 'Fighting Defensively as a Swift Action'. Brilliant! But since the ability is called Dizzying Defence and not Dizzying Attack I don't think this 'swift action attack' is what they intended.

I definitely agree with you there. My post was more a "responding to people being confused about fighting defensively" thing than anything else.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Googleshng wrote:
Even if you could, that would involve not taking Signature Deed at level 11 to make Bleeding Wound completely free on every attack (or cost only 1 point if you want stat damage), and you can't as written take that feat twice. It also wouldn't solve the...

Oh, right.

But bleeding wound only works on living things.

Why not take Signature Deed for Opportune Parry and Riposte then you could get a parry per round equal to your AoO per round?


Dizzying Defense (Ex): At 15th level, while wielding a light or one-handed piercing melee weapon in one hand, the swashbuckler can spend 1 panache point to take the fighting defensively action as a swift action instead of
a standard action. When fighting defensively in this manner, the dodge bonus to AC gained from that action increases to +4, and the penalty to attack rolls is instead –2.

If I can Fight Defensively as a Swift Action instead of a Standard, does that give an extra attack at -2, then lets me Full Attack at -2 and +4 AC for the rest of the round? If so, that is an awesome ability for 1 Panache!


If the above is true, does having 3 Ranks in Acrobatics give you +1 AC more or the +2 you would get for Full Defense? Good question for Stephen...


also, after having read through all 14 pages of this thread, I thought I'd put together a rapier and buckler swashbuckler and see how he mechanically progresses at various levels. a couple of decisions: he is human, build with 20 stat buy, and uses the PFS hit system (max at 1st, 1/2 +1 at every level thereafter). additionally, I have max ranks in the following skills: acrobatics, diplomacy, perform, intimidate, and sense motive. additionally, I decided to build him at 1, 5, 10, 15, and 20, just to get an idea of how he plays as he progresses. finally, I designed him to compare dex to damage via an agile weapon and no dex to damage. and so, without further ado, we begin:

level 1::

str 10
dex 16 (includes +2 racial)
con 14
int 10
wis 10
cha 16

hp: 13

fort: +2; ref: +5; will: +1 (includes trait bonus)

feats: (weapon finesse), combat reflexes, weapon focus (rapier)

attack: +5 to hit (+6 with AoOs thanks to fencer); 1d6 +0 damage; 18-20/x2 crit

ac: 17 touch: 13 flatfooted: 14

gear: rapier, studded leather armor, buckler]

my level 1 guy doesn't do much damage, but he can consistently fight 2 guys simultaneously. this is how the character fights as he levels up, burning AoOs to parry incoming attacks.

level 5::

Str 10
dex 17 (19)
con 14
int 10
wis 10
cha 16

hp: 49

fort: +4; ref: +9; will: +3 (includes trait bonus)

feats: (weapon finesse), combat reflexes, weapon focus (rapier), dodge, weapon spec (rapier), quick draw, (improved crit)

attack: +12 to hit (+13 with AoOs thanks to fencer); 1d6 +4 (9 with precise strike) damage; 15-20/x2 crit

ac: 21 touch: 15 flatfooted: 16

gear: +1 rapier, +2 belt of dex, +1 studded leather armor, +1 buckler, +1 cloak of resistance

finally starting to get some damage, and now has quickdraw to be able to qualify for all his abilities at the start of combat.

level 10:

str 10
dex 18 (22)
con 14
int 10
wis 10
cha 16 (18)

hp: 94

fort: +7; ref: +15; will: +8 (includes trait bonus)

feats: (weapon finesse), combat reflexes, weapon focus (rapier), dodge, weapon spec (rapier), quick draw, (improved crit), shield focus, greater weapon focus, iron will

attack with agile: +22/17 to hit (+23 with AoOs thanks to fencer);
1d6 +12 (22 with precise strike) damage; 15-20/x2 crit

attack without agile: +23/18 to hit (+24 with AoOs thanks to fencer);
1d6 +7 (17 with precise strike) damage; 15-20/x2 crit

ac: 32 touch: 22 flatfooted: 22

gear: +2 agile or +3 rapier, +4 belt of dex, +2 mithril chain shirt, +2 buckler, +2 cloak of resistance, +2 headband of cha, jingasa of the fortunate soldier, dusty rose prism ioun stone.

this level starts the comparision of dex to dam and no dex to dam. for the non-dex side, I decided to go with an additional +1 enh. to let him parry more often.

level 15::

str 10
dex 19 (25)
con 14
int 10
wis 10
cha 16 (20)

hp: 149

fort: +12; ref: +20; will: +13 (includes trait bonus)

feats: (weapon finesse), combat reflexes, weapon focus (rapier), dodge, weapon spec (rapier), extra grit, (improved crit), shield focus, greater weapon focus, iron will, signature deed (parry and riposte), greater weapon spec (rapier), greater shield focus, quick draw

attack with agile: +31/26/21 to hit (+32 with AoOs thanks to fencer);
1d6 +18 (33 with precise strike) damage; 15-20/x2 crit

attack without agile: +31/26/21 to hit (+32 with AoOs thanks to fencer);
1d6 +12 (27 with precise strike) damage; 15-20/x2 crit

ac: 38 touch: 26 (flatfooted removed due to gaining evasive at 11)

gear: +5 agile ghost touch or +5 ghost touch heartseeking rapier, +6 belt of dex, +5 bracers of armor, +3 buckler, +5 cloak of resistance, +4 headband of cha, jingasa of the fortunate soldier, dusty rose prism ioun stone, +3 ring of prot

this level is really kinda ridiculous. He gets 7 AoOs a round, which means that he can reliably parry 7 attacks and then riposte one of them. he also gets signature deed at 11, which means that his 7 points of grit can go to other things, like bleeding attack.

finally, level 20:

str 10
dex 26 (32)
con 14 (20)
int 10
wis 10
cha 20 (26)

hp: 244

fort: +18; ref: +30; will: +16 (includes trait bonus)

feats: (weapon finesse), combat reflexes, weapon focus (rapier), dodge, weapon spec (rapier), extra grit x2, (improved crit), shield focus, greater weapon focus, iron will, signature deed (parry and riposte), greater weapon spec (rapier), greater shield focus, disruptive, stand still, spellbreaker, quick draw

attack with agile: +45/45/40/35/30 to hit (+46 with AoOs thanks to fencer);
1d6 +26 (46 with precise strike) damage; 15-20/x3 crit

attack without agile: +45/45/40/35/30 to hit (+44 with AoOs thanks to fencer); 1d6 +15 (35 with precise strike) damage; 15-20/x3 crit

ac: 50 touch: 34 (flatfooted removed due to gaining evasive at 11)

gear: +5 agile, ghost touch, speed or +5 ghost touch, heartseeking, speed rapier, +6 belt of dex/con, +8 bracers of armor, +5 buckler, +5 cloak of resistance, +6 headband of cha, jingasa of the fortunate soldier, dusty rose prism ioun stone, +5 ring of prot, gunman's duster, necklace of adaptation, luckstone, gloves of dueling, pale green prism ioun stone, 9 scrolls of wish (used by ally to get +5 inherent bonus to dex and +4 inherent bonus to cha), ring of foe focus.

at this level, even without adding dex to damage, he's still decent at attacking non-immune to crits things (so between 75-80% of the time). he should also crit threat about 1/round on average; and parrying 12 attacks a round is insane. additionally he has 11 points of panache, so he can make all of his attacks bleeding if he wants to, or throw 7 panache at 1 guy to give him bleed 11, str 1, dex 1, and con 1.


Just to confirm, if I declare an intent to parry before an attack roll and the oponent rolls a natural "1" AND I beat the attack roll on my parry, I now get two AoO on the schmuck, right? Can I couple this with some crazy tripping thing and get more AoOs from them falling and being prone?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Why would you get two AoO?


Azouth wrote:
Why would you get two AoO?

I think Torbyne is referring to Greater Trip:

Greater Trip (Combat)
You can make free attacks on foes that you knock down.
Prerequisites: Combat Expertise, Improved Trip, base attack bonus +6, Int 13.
Benefit: You receive a +2 bonus on checks made to trip a foe. This bonus stacks with the bonus granted by Improved Trip. Whenever you successfully trip an opponent, that opponent provokes attacks of opportunity.
Normal: Creatures do not provoke attacks of opportunity from being tripped.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pawns Subscriber

Maybe Torbyne plays in a game where rolling a natural 1 provokes an attack of opportunity--like a critical miss optional rule (as an aside: is it odd that critical miss options rarely seem to make you "confirm" the critical miss).

Anyway Torbyne, that would be a topic to discuss with your DM and the rest of your table, just like any other house rule.

My take on the part that is in everyone's ruleset would be that the Riposte is "an attack as an immediate action," and therefore, like any attack, able to be subbed out for maneuvers that allow use in place of an attack. So, yeah. Greater Trip away!


Knick wrote:
(as an aside: is it odd that critical miss options rarely seem to make you "confirm" the critical miss).

Most games I've played had some form of confirmation.

My current TT calls for a reflex save after a 1 to avoid a fumble, one before that was attack roll again, if it misses, you fumble.


Starfox wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:

Weapon Agility (or whatever they decide to call it) ought to work like this:

Weapon Agility
Prerequisites: DEX 13, Weapon Finesse
Select one type of weapon that you can use with Weapon Finesse, you may use your DEX in place of your STR on weapon damage rolls. This damage is not increased by 50% when the weapon is used two-handed and the additional 50% damage from Power Attack when using a weapon two-handed is also not applied.

It turns Agile Weapons into a feat, which is exactly what you have with Keen vs. Improved Critical.

Having one feat make another feat less good (in this case Power Attack) is not a good idea. Also, makes it less competitive vs. Dervish Dance. What you could do is prohibit using Weapon Agility with 2-handed weapons.

A feat can restrict itself in various ways. It cannot restrict other feats.

what of the elven curve blade?

Silver Crusade

Throne wrote:
Knick wrote:
(as an aside: is it odd that critical miss options rarely seem to make you "confirm" the critical miss).

Most games I've played had some form of confirmation.

My current TT calls for a reflex save after a 1 to avoid a fumble, one before that was attack roll again, if it misses, you fumble.

Does your TT only call for this save after rolling a nat 1 on the very first attack of a full attack, or only after the first 1 is rolled, or after every single nat 1 on every attack of a full attack?

What mechanic does your TT use to model something bad happening when casting fireball, or any other spell which doesn't require an attack roll?


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Throne wrote:
Knick wrote:
(as an aside: is it odd that critical miss options rarely seem to make you "confirm" the critical miss).

Most games I've played had some form of confirmation.

My current TT calls for a reflex save after a 1 to avoid a fumble, one before that was attack roll again, if it misses, you fumble.

It's interesting; I don't actually have an official fumble house rule, but whenever my players roll a 1 on an attack, they immediately roll to "confirm" the fumble. If they roll a second 1, they generally expect something bad to happen. It's rare enough that I don't even remember what I did the last time it happened, but apparently the players like the rule.

Grand Lodge

@Vrog

How can you parry 7 attacks a round? Its an immediate action to parry. You are chewing your next swift action. Unless I am missing something, thats just a single parry a round.


Helaman wrote:

@Vrog

How can you parry 7 attacks a round? Its an immediate action to parry. You are chewing your next swift action. Unless I am missing something, thats just a single parry a round.

It's an immediate action to Riposte, not to Parry.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Helaman wrote:

@Vrog

How can you parry 7 attacks a round? Its an immediate action to parry. You are chewing your next swift action. Unless I am missing something, thats just a single parry a round.

Parry uses the AoO mechanics, you can parry as many AoO that you are allowed to take before the beginning of your next turn. You must be confusing with the riposte part, which is indeed an immediate action, the riposte is only if you want to hit back the opponent but you never have to do it.


Hmm how about this for mobility,

Swift step: a swashbuckler may move and take a five foot step in the same turn.

sort of a lesser spring attack

AND

Supurb Footwork: when a swashbuckler makes an acrobatics, climb or swim check during their movement the first 10 feed of the skill based movement is not counted for total distance moved. In addition a Swashbuckler may always take ten on such a check.

I know its worded horridly but you can probobly get the idea, its a situational fast movement.


Hmmm.. it seems that while flat footed the swashbuckler can Parry but cannot riposte?


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Would giving the class a second swift action fix the bottle neck?
at say level 7 or so.

Could show the speed a swashbuckler has over a fighter.


Raspen wrote:

Would giving the class a second swift action fix the bottle neck?

at say level 7 or so.

Could show the speed a swashbuckler has over a fighter.

I actually really like that.

It did get me thinking "could I use it to cast 3 spells (2 quickened, 1 normal)?" right away, but I think it's hard capped at 2.


Knick wrote:

Maybe Torbyne plays in a game where rolling a natural 1 provokes an attack of opportunity--like a critical miss optional rule (as an aside: is it odd that critical miss options rarely seem to make you "confirm" the critical miss).

Anyway Torbyne, that would be a topic to discuss with your DM and the rest of your table, just like any other house rule.

My take on the part that is in everyone's ruleset would be that the Riposte is "an attack as an immediate action," and therefore, like any attack, able to be subbed out for maneuvers that allow use in place of an attack. So, yeah. Greater Trip away!

You have no idea how blown my mind is at this very moment... i have believed for 13 years that rolling a natural one provokes an AoO from all enemies in melee with you. It has been a part of every game i have been in all this time. I have raged against the idea that any full BAB class ends up provoking attacks this way more often than any of the less melee focused classes. I had to go look it up after you posted this...

"Automatic Misses and Hits: A natural 1 (the d20 comes up 1) on an attack roll is always a miss. A natural 20 (the d20 comes up 20) is always a hit. A natural 20 is also a threat—a possible critical hit (see the attack action)."

Not a thing on AoOs. i am going to go rethink my life now.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Torbyne wrote:
Knick wrote:

Maybe Torbyne plays in a game where rolling a natural 1 provokes an attack of opportunity--like a critical miss optional rule (as an aside: is it odd that critical miss options rarely seem to make you "confirm" the critical miss).

Anyway Torbyne, that would be a topic to discuss with your DM and the rest of your table, just like any other house rule.

My take on the part that is in everyone's ruleset would be that the Riposte is "an attack as an immediate action," and therefore, like any attack, able to be subbed out for maneuvers that allow use in place of an attack. So, yeah. Greater Trip away!

You have no idea how blown my mind is at this very moment... i have believed for 13 years that rolling a natural one provokes an AoO from all enemies in melee with you. It has been a part of every game i have been in all this time. I have raged against the idea that any full BAB class ends up provoking attacks this way more often than any of the less melee focused classes. I had to go look it up after you posted this...

"Automatic Misses and Hits: A natural 1 (the d20 comes up 1) on an attack roll is always a miss. A natural 20 (the d20 comes up 20) is always a hit. A natural 20 is also a threat—a possible critical hit (see the attack action)."

Not a thing on AoOs. i am going to go rethink my life now.

To be fair, a lot of my dm do this actually to make natural 1 more exciting, AoOs or sometime you drop your weapon or sometime you even break your weapon or other time you hit an ally or hurt yourself.


LoneKnave wrote:
Raspen wrote:

Would giving the class a second swift action fix the bottle neck?

at say level 7 or so.

Could show the speed a swashbuckler has over a fighter.

I actually really like that.

It did get me thinking "could I use it to cast 3 spells (2 quickened, 1 normal)?" right away, but I think it's hard capped at 2.

I'm not opposed.

I really feel like this class is almost at the perfect spot. Just gotta fix that battlefield flow.

Are we going to get to preview another revision of it before it goes to print?

Liberty's Edge

Trout wrote:
LoneKnave wrote:
Raspen wrote:

Would giving the class a second swift action fix the bottle neck?

at say level 7 or so.

Could show the speed a swashbuckler has over a fighter.

I actually really like that.

It did get me thinking "could I use it to cast 3 spells (2 quickened, 1 normal)?" right away, but I think it's hard capped at 2.

I'm not opposed.

I really feel like this class is almost at the perfect spot. Just gotta fix that battlefield flow.

Are we going to get to preview another revision of it before it goes to print?

Stephen already said we won't see the final revision before it ships. He said this is the last one we'll see.


Steven_Evil wrote:


Stephen already said we won't see the final revision before it ships. He said this is the last one we'll see.

A toast to optimism then!

I'd love to hear Stephen or another Dev's final thoughts as they move into the next stages of Development for each of these classes. Perhaps when testing ends.


Steven_Evil wrote:
Trout wrote:
LoneKnave wrote:
Raspen wrote:

Would giving the class a second swift action fix the bottle neck?

at say level 7 or so.

Could show the speed a swashbuckler has over a fighter.

I actually really like that.

It did get me thinking "could I use it to cast 3 spells (2 quickened, 1 normal)?" right away, but I think it's hard capped at 2.

I'm not opposed.

I really feel like this class is almost at the perfect spot. Just gotta fix that battlefield flow.

Are we going to get to preview another revision of it before it goes to print?

Stephen already said we won't see the final revision before it ships. He said this is the last one we'll see.

That's disappointing since there are still some kind of big issues with the class including:

-a distinct lack of the mobility that is common to the archetypical swashbuckler
-a serious bottleneck in action economy with everything taking up Swift and Immediate Actions
-two poor saves on a front-liner for whom Con is a 3rd or 4th stat, and Wis is a 4th or 5th, and only a weak mechanic to buttress those (again, because its action conflicts with the entire rest of the class)

The swashbuckler really needs a way to move and attack more than once. It needs a way to perform some impressive movement feats, like charging through difficult terrain and around corners/over obstacles, to fight competently while balanced on something and while hanging. It needs abilities that promote that sort of movement.

Maybe something akin to Star Wars Saga Editions Acrobatic Strike (I think that's what it was called), where if you tumble past an opponent you get a bonus on to-hit against them.

Maybe Acrobatic Attacker: If you successfully tumble through an opponent's square, until the end of your turn, you are considered to be flanking that opponent and gain +1d6 damage.


Vrog Skyreaver wrote:
also, after having read through all 14 pages of this thread, I thought I'd put together a rapier and buckler swashbuckler and see how he mechanically progresses at various levels. a couple of decisions: he is human, build with 20 stat buy, and uses the PFS hit system (max at 1st, 1/2 +1 at every level thereafter). additionally, I have max ranks in the following skills: acrobatics, diplomacy, perform, intimidate, and sense motive. additionally, I decided to build him at 1, 5, 10, 15, and 20, just to get an idea of how he plays as he progresses.

Did you actually playtest this at these levels, or just slap the character together and give it a glance? I'm seeing a few things that don't add up right from where I'm sitting.

First off, equipment. 10 str gives you a light load of 33. 2 for a rapier, 5 for a buckler, 20 for studded leather, then 2 more lbs. at level 5. That has you at 29/33 lbs. Go with a an entertainer's outfit and you get around the indecent exposure issue but... you can't pick up anything. One copper piece technically bumps you to a medium load. You can't even wear a handy haversack to make up for it, even if your GM waved the encumbrance of your clothes. I have doubts about that in terms of realistic playability. Also at level 20 you seem to be adding two armor bonuses into that crazy AC (bracers and duster).

I'm also pretty sure you have to pick just one bleed effect for a given attack, but the specific wording is weird with the whole "free action" bit.

The first real problem I'm seeing though is that nothing has any incentive to stay in a fight with you. If I try and attack some wimpy looking guy, and he knocks my attack aside and stabs me in the face for my trouble, I'm not especially inclined to keep trying that. I'm just going to step over here and attack this other, even wimpier looking guy who keeps casting spells. You don't have any sort of ability to keep me there like tripping or grappling, or even step up, so the worst I have to deal with is an AOO... which I already have to deal with, and doesn't do a whole lot of damage. All this sort of defensive focus does is remove yourself from the fight. Monk players face this sort of frustration all the time.

DR is another big issue. Skeletons are a pretty At level 1, you're doing a flat 1d6. Fight a skeleton, and anything short of max damage does nothing unless you crit. You can't even carry a backup weapon to deal with it, because you literally can't carry a backup weapon.

The worst issue though is the same problem every swashbuckler has to face, saving throws. Let's look at a ghoul. They're CR1, so you can expect to find them quite early, and with the playtest I ran a swashbuckler through, they were swarming all over at level 5. Let's fight one with this character at level 1 first-

You can probably go first, probably hit it. A max damage crit from you isn't enough to kill it, it's definitely getting some attacks in against you. It gets three attacks once its in full attack range (dodging panache may let you avoid 2 of those on certain rounds). You can parry the whole string if you're coming in with full panache. They hit on a 14, your parry attempt is a +6 to their +3 so that comes out to what? Around a 15% chance of getting a hit in, roughly? The ghoul gets 3 attempts at it per round, you need a few rounds to take it down if the rest of the party is occupied, odds are pretty good you're going to take a hit or two this fight.

Take one hit, you need a fort save. Two if it's from the bite and your GM doesn't wait on disease checks. If you riposted before this hit, you can't use charmed life on this. Same problem if it lands 2 hits in the same round, which isn't at all out of the question if you're the only one throwing damage on this thing, panache runs out quick with all this parrying. A DC13 fort save is a coinflip without charmed life, fail and you seriously out of commission. Paralysis is not a dex build's friend. Ghoul fever's pretty nasty with that con.

Alternatively, let's look at this at level 5. A few ghouls attack you, swarming whoever's out front as ghouls are wont to do. Your AC is better, your fort save is 2 higher because you bought a cloak, but +4 is the baseline for anyone else in your position at this level, before adding stats. Plus your parry attempts beat their attacks by 8 even if they're flanking, and do enough damage to potentially drop one in a single hit. That said, your parries are limited by your unchanged panache, you only get one riposte. My math says if four manage surround you and one dies on its first attempt to attack, you're still looking at 2 or 3 hits getting though, and a 60% shot at passing the saves. Pass on the riposte, you still only get charmed life (which only brings you to the save of a fighter with your con and cloak) on the first. Paralysis is looking likely. Throw a ghast in the mix and it's even worse. You're hit with a fort save as soon as you're in combat range, saves are up to 15, if it flanks it's back to hitting on a 14, and you need a crit to take it down in one go. This issue only gets more pronounced at higher levels where (sometimes) adding cha to fort saves is less and less of an effective bandaid.

A bit further along through the same adventure, you're looking at a gauntlet of ghosts, ghasts, fort and will saves, with no way to replenish panache beyond crits. I believe there's a swarm or two in here too, but no melee type is really good with those. Followed by a couple fights that took out my first test swash in the first round with DC20 will saves.

Then of course, at higher levels, while you are doing enough damage to be a threat despite the very defensive build, you face the problem that basically everything you fight is going to be flying, has reach if not long range attacks, and correct me if I'm wrong, but you don't have anything that ever pushes your CMB over your BAB, so grapplings a serious hazard too.

All that said, this is an interesting build to see.


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Yeah, without a good Fort, SBs will be minced meat by 9th level or so. Having one bad save between Fort and Will is okay. Not ideal, of course, but can be dealt with.

Shoring up one save is not a problem. Shoring up two... Well, that's another story...

All the resources that go into making those two saves less awful will surely be missed.

Stephen, if you're still reading this...

Please, please... Give the SB a second good save. With bad Fort and bad Will save, the SB is doomed to fall to most enemies he encounters beyond 9th level.

Save-or-Lose effects are extremely common, and they target Fort or Will 90% of the time. Having a reasonable chance of resisting them is not a bonus, it's a necessity. With reflex as their only good save, SBs will be easy prey at mid levels and all but unplayable at high levels.

This is not just theorycraft either. More than once I've actually seen it happen to Rogues and Ninjas. Last time it happened, one of my players, a 20pt buy Half-Elf Ninja with Dual-Minded (racial trait that gives +2 to will) and Force of Personality (feat that allows you to add Cha instead of Wis to will saves) was taken out of combat by common debilitating effects (such as poison and spells) more often than not. He eventually gave up and replaced the Ninja with a Bard.

Please, give SBs a good Fort save progression. They'll need it.


Against ghouls, wouldn't you parry the first attack and then use Dodging Penache to try to get out of the way?

This class benefits a lot from playing with initiative and using delay. If you run up to something and whack it, and then it whacks you, Dodging Panache won't do much because it can 5 foot step in the middle of its attack.

But if it charges you, makes an attack, you dodging panache out of the way and that's it... the things attacks are over.


BigNorseWolf wrote:

Against ghouls, wouldn't you parry the first attack and then use Dodging Penache to try to get out of the way?

This class benefits a lot from playing with initiative and using delay. If you run up to something and whack it, and then it whacks you, Dodging Panache won't do much because it can 5 foot step in the middle of its attack.

But if it charges you, makes an attack, you dodging panache out of the way and that's it... the things attacks are over.

You can't keep the dodging + Parrying up for very long. You'll likely run out of panache in the second round if you try.


The specific scenario I was looking at also involved hidden ghouls surrounding the swashbuckler in a surprise round. Dodging panache provokes AOOs from anyone else threatening you, and only gets you out of full attack range if your opponent has already taken a 5' step. Not a smart move when you're surrounded. Totally the way to go with the level 1 fight I laid out though. Only works every other round and when there's no other targets to go after, but in my initial testing when parry/riposte was too expensive to use, I got a little milage out of it.

The real point I was making there thogh is about how saves work in practice. Reflex saves, you're going to make one a round when a wizard casts an area spell, or the floor gives out from under you. Will saves you make just one when some wizard tries to fry your brain. Fort saves though, when they come up, come up en masse. Only the fighter (and maybe a risk taking rogue) have to deal with them, but it is only because fighters, barbarians, paladins, rogues, rangers, animal companions, cavaliers, bloodragers, magi, inquisitors, monks, brawlers, hunters, skalds, slayers, warpriests, and even alchemists clerics and druids have a good fort save that they are able to get into range of a whole slew of critters without it being suicide. You'll notice every class I didn't mention has a tendency to hang back.

Rogues and ninjas are kind of the exception that proves the rule. They jump in to do a lot of damage against targets that are already entangled with a melee buddy, hopefully dropping them before they can bite back. In practice it doesn't always work out, and I've seen many a paralyzed or poisoned rogue get scraped off the floor at the end of a fight.

Stephen, could you please either fix it, or tell us why all those classes I listed (and gunslingers) get a good for save, but swashbucklers don't?


Alexander Augunas wrote:
Arutema wrote:
So I know it's not optimal, as there is no Dex-to-damage option, but I was looking at creating a Vudrani-themed swashbuckler using an urumi. Am I correct in reading Slashing Grace that it will allow me to use all swashbuckler class features with the urumi?

Correct, but you would need Exotic Weapon Proficiency: Urumi first.

While I love the idea of Slashing Grace, I hate that its essentially aSwashbuckler-only feat that is little more than a feat tax. What's worse, it only applies to one weapon at a time. I can understand the restriction for things like Weapon Focus or Weapon Specialization, but Slashing Grace is not a strong option currently.

why would you ever take slashing grace when you can take Dervish and get dex to damage on top of making the scimitar finesse and count as piercing???


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Speaking of Initiative...

I'll once again suggest a change to Swashbuckler Initiative, making it add Cha modifier instead of an static +2.

- It'd be far more flavorful (a random number is boring and seems arbitrary, adding Cha seems that the Swashbucklers panache makes everyone hesitate when they see him making his grand entrance)
- It's not without precedent (Kensai Magus adds Int to Initiative. Inquisitors add Wisdom.)
- It's nice, but not amazing and probably not worth a dip unless the player is already interested in making a Swashbuckler type of character.

Another thing... "Evasive" should definitely be an scaling ability instead of something that comes all of sudden.

e.g.: Uncanny Dodge at 3rd level, Evasion at 7th, Improved Uncanny Dodge at 11th.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Leap attack similar to the Bullette would be cool. A swashbuckler should have the speed to move and full attack.


Could an increase to the use of Charmed Life help remedy the saves issue?
Maybe uses equal to her CHA mod per day, only usable if you have at least 1 Panache Point?

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