I need to be healer...and arcane caster... and carry more than my share in melee


Advice

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Dieben wrote:
*level 8 build*

I should probably point out that the OP is starting at level 4. I don't know how your concept would work at that level, but it needs to be decent at level 4 to be of use to the OP.


Dieben wrote:

I'm playing a Scarred Witch Doctor with the Elements patron and a level in Mutation Fighter in the Reign of Winter campaign. {. . .}

PROS:

    {. . .}
  • In melee, you will mutilate your foes with every hit. Your BAB won't be too hot, but this is what flanking is made for. Add in spells like Vomit Swarm, Aggressive Thundercloud, and Twilight Knife to further increase your damage output each turn.
    {. . .}

Prestiging into Eldritch Knight would help with the BAB part (hint: do this after taking an even-numbered level of Scarred Witch Doctor -- for the cost of a slight delay in bosting your hit points even more than they already are, you get another Hex and another level of progression of scaling Hexes).

CONS:

    {. . .}
  • Not getting multiple attacks in a full attack can be especially rough.
{. . .}

Prestiging into Eldritch Knight would help with this also, by increasing your BAB at full speed (although with the downside of having several blank levels and 1 more level of no spellcasting progression). The capstone isn't earth-shaking (and wouldn't be very exciting on some builds), but it would be pretty good if you built for both AoO fishing and crit fishing.

Edit: Also looked at Mutation Warrior again, and once again I have to say what were they thinking in the ACG? They replaced Armor Training 1 (gained at level 3) with Mutagen gained at level 1. Talk about dip-friendly! Might as well cheese this into entry into Eldritch Knight -- you already meet all the prerequisites. Normally, entering a prestige class late would be kind of bad, but with Scarred Witch Doctor as your arcane casting base, entering at level 9 instead of 7 just means your BAB is delayed by 1, which isn't that horrible with Orc Strength backing you up, and might even be worth doing on purpose if you really needed that 1 more Hex.

Also, if you're going the archery route, you might as well secondarily prestige into Arcane Archer when you get done with Eldritch Knight -- or if you aren't building for crit fishing, do this before you get done with Eldritch Knight. You probably just want 4 levels of Arcane Archer (it is 3/4 spellcasting progression), and then go back to Eldritch Knight (if you haven't finished it already) or otherwise back to Scarred Witch Doctor.


Honestly, don't worry about the "I want to be tough in melee" part. Worst comes to worst, there are spells that will last whole battles for you.

The White Mage suggestion is great. A Cleric with the right domains is great. A Witch is great. A Shaman is great. Pick one of these things, IMO.

A Fighter/Barbarian/Scarred Witch Doctor won't really do what you want it to do, and a Summoner... You need more spells than that, IMO, higher level spells.

You've got four other people fighting in melee for you. Your job is magic. You are the ONLY magic user in the entire party, and you need to make sure you can live up to that. If you're worried about having things to do when you run out of spells, choose spells that aren't used up in just one round. Or this one. They don't have as much initial oomph, but you probably just need one such spell memorized.

Also, when you can knock out or cripple half your opponents with one Color Spray, Deep Slumber, Mass Hold Person, Glitterdust, Burst of Radiance, Confusion, or Web spell... Um. Well, you only need the one spell, don't you? And if you can prepare Enervation, heh, you're just fine, just FINE.


UnArcaneElection wrote:
Dieben wrote:

I'm playing a Scarred Witch Doctor with the Elements patron and a level in Mutation Fighter in the Reign of Winter campaign. {. . .}

PROS:

    {. . .}
  • In melee, you will mutilate your foes with every hit. Your BAB won't be too hot, but this is what flanking is made for. Add in spells like Vomit Swarm, Aggressive Thundercloud, and Twilight Knife to further increase your damage output each turn.
    {. . .}

Prestiging into Eldritch Knight would help with the BAB part (hint: do this after taking an even-numbered level of Scarred Witch Doctor -- for the cost of a slight delay in bosting your hit points even more than they already are, you get another Hex and another level of progression of scaling Hexes).

CONS:

    {. . .}
  • Not getting multiple attacks in a full attack can be especially rough.
{. . .}

Prestiging into Eldritch Knight would help with this also, by increasing your BAB at full speed (although with the downside of having several blank levels and 1 more level of no spellcasting progression). The capstone isn't earth-shaking (and wouldn't be very exciting on some builds), but it would be pretty good if you built for both AoO fishing and crit fishing.

Edit: Also looked at Mutation Warrior again, and once again I have to say what were they thinking in the ACG? They replaced Armor Training 1 (gained at level 3) with Mutagen gained at level 1. Talk about dip-friendly! Might as well cheese this into entry into Eldritch Knight -- you already meet all the prerequisites. Normally, entering a prestige class late would be kind of bad, but with Scarred Witch Doctor as your arcane casting base, entering at level 9 instead of 7 just means your BAB is delayed by 1, which isn't that horrible with Orc Strength backing you up, and might even be worth doing on purpose if you really needed that 1 more Hex....

Problem with going into EK is that the Hex DC is going to suffer and then all you have from SWD is con as casting stat. But the idea of running in armor and hexing everything is gone. EK is a unimpressive PC also with SWD.

Edit: generally i Think it is a misconception to belive the SWD a frontliner because he have a High con.


The idea of going Reach means that while you are melee, you aren't quite a frontliner.

HOWEVER, that said -- when clicking on a different thread because I was curious about something else entirely, I stumbled upon this innovation from the Melee Tactics Toolbos: the Elven Branched Spear (and then back out to the d20pfsrd.com weapons page to see the stats -- this is apparently still too new to have showed up on Archives of Nethys). The 1d8 (1d6 for Small) damage and 20/x3 critical is nothing to write home about, but it is a Reach weapon (and Brace if you need it), and gives you +2 on Attack of Opportunity attack rolls, which if I understand correctly from a fine-toothed reading of the rules, also includes Combat Maneuver rolls when they are performed as Attacks of Opportunity (for those types that can be). The +2 sounds modest, but it is enough to make up for the difference between 1/2 BAB and 3/4 BAB until you get to 11 levels of the respective BABs. (You can also use Weapon Finesse with it, which is helpful if you cranked Dexterity, although you won't be getting Dex-to-Damage with it, and Scarred Witch Doctor is probably going to have high enough Strength not to need this.) So a Reach 9/9 arcane spellcaster could be viable with this up through at least 10 levels of 9/9 arcane spellcasting class in a large subset of situations in which a Reach Cleric or Reach Eldritch Knight could be viable -- you just have to get proficiency with the weapon (Exotic for most characters(*), or Martial for Elves, or Ancestral Weapon for Half-Elves), and you can avoid the need to choose mostly non-scaling Hexes, because you don't have to go Eldritch Knight (and with critical range reduced to 1/20, you aren't going to be crit-fishing anyway -- x3 is just icing on the cake).

(*)This includes almost anybody who is going to be a Scarred Witch Doctor -- be prepared to spend a feat.


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LazarX wrote:

You want to do it all... You can't.

You need to set priorities on what you want to do, and minimum standards for acheivement in each area.

Bard

Dark Archive

At level 4, my SWD was already a force in combat. Admittedly, I don't use any hexes with saving throws. However, looking back, my Hex DC would have been at least a 17 at level 4. 19 with mutagen. My health at the time was upwards of 50 points (which was more than the party fighter).

There are numerous spells on the witch list that are cast on one's self but trigger on opponents who deal melee damage to the witch. Eruptive Pustules, Blood Blaze, and Spite come to mind. Most witches do not learn or use these spells since they cannot afford to take the hit needed to trigger them. The SWD can take those hits.

Feel free to ask me more questions here, I'll happily answer them.


I just remembered about the Evangelist prestige class, which only costs 1 level of delayed spellcasting and Hex progression, and has 3/4 BAB, and gives some other decent benefits. Just make sure that you meet the entry qualifications by the time you get to level 6 or 7 (depending upon whether you want to take 1 more level of Scarred Witch Doctor or whatever other arcane casting class to advance your BAB or other class features -- leaving an arcane 9/9 casting class at an odd-numbered level hurts you on BAB).

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

You're in a party of melees.

Bard will add more damage than any other option simply through Inspire Courage.

And then you have Glitterdust and Grease for battlefield control.


Arcane Healer / Sound Striker Bard

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