Do archetypes that both alter class skills stack?


Rules Questions

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Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber
LazarX wrote:
Mysterious Stranger wrote:

The rule that says “If you select a level in a new class all of its class skills are automatically added to your list of class skills, and you gain a +3 bonus on these skills if you have ranks in them. So if I am a first level fighter and I put a point into knowledge religion obviously that is not a class skill. My next level I decide to pick up a level of cleric, then knowledge religion is a class skill, and I get the +3 bonus. So at this point is my list of class skills a class feature of fighter, or is it a class feature of cleric? How does going up in cleric alter my fighter class feature? What about traits and feats? If I take a trait that adds a skill as a class skill does that skill become a class feature?

Your list of class skills is a pool that many things can affect. Your character has a single list of class skills that include all class skills from any source.

Incorrect, your character has a set of class skills for each class she possesses. They are separate features for each class, although they will overlap.

they're added separately from class features in the level up turn order.

Liberty's Edge

New page ... new reminder to click the FAQ button on the post toward the beginning of the thread (previous page).

So far we have about 57 FAQ requests and counting ...


Oh my. This turned into quite the productive discussion


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Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber
Mad Coil wrote:
Oh my. This turned into quite the productive discussion

your icon goes with that statement almost too well.


You look up what skills you get under what class you take.

Some classes have abilities that change those skills, such as alchemist and rogues getting a boost to certain skills.

Some archtypes change those abilities AND even change classes.

This isn't an FAQ candidate. It's pretty clear.

As for the OP, of you have two archtypes that change something, even if they both make the same change, it won't stack.

You wouldn't let two types of alchemist that change bombs to a d4 stack. This is the same. Even when it's a "benefit" like both add the same skill TO a list. A change is a change.


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber

change to class skills though, not to class features, which is legal as per the rules.


Class is class.


Cavall wrote:
Class is class.

We're talking about class features. Are your class skills considered class features? If so, are your BAB, saving throws progression, and hit die size also considered class features? I think not. They are considered part of the class package, but aren't features of the class. Do monsters with skill ranks and class skills count those as class features? If so, do they count as having a character class because they have a class feature?

But, no, class skills are not class features. They are inherent to all classes and creatures and as such are not a "feature". The class skills selected are part of the class package, but not considered "class features".


The fact that weapons armour and skills are all changed by archtypes in their "class features " means that two archtypes that change the same thing don't stack.

And yes, all the things you listed are class features.


Cavall wrote:

The fact that weapons armour and skills are all changed by archtypes in their "class features " means that two archtypes that change the same thing don't stack.

And yes, all the things you listed are class features.

I dunno. Mysterious Stranger makes a good point with ex-Paladins. If all the things listed are class features, does a fallen paladin lose all his HP's except those granted by Con bonus? Does his BAB become 0? Do his saving throws become 0?

Edit: I was on the no stacking side of things until this was mentioned. I don't think I've ever heard anyone propose a fallen paladin loses all those things. Normally he just stops being able to lay on hands, apply Cha to saves and such, loses his mount, his spells and any other ability specifically listed as a class feature.


Entirely different than archtypes and how they stack.


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They are class features or they are not.


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber
Cavall wrote:

The fact that weapons armour and skills are all changed by archtypes in their "class features " means that two archtypes that change the same thing don't stack.

And yes, all the things you listed are class features.

weapon proficiency are a class feature, but class skills are largely above the class feature's section, along with BAB and what not.


CalethosVB wrote:
Cavall wrote:
Class is class.

We're talking about class features. Are your class skills considered class features? If so, are your BAB, saving throws progression, and hit die size also considered class features? I think not. They are considered part of the class package, but aren't features of the class. Do monsters with skill ranks and class skills count those as class features? If so, do they count as having a character class because they have a class feature?

But, no, class skills are not class features. They are inherent to all classes and creatures and as such are not a "feature". The class skills selected are part of the class package, but not considered "class features".

So if two archetypes changed a class's hit die size or BAB, would they be allowed to stack?


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber
born_of_fire wrote:
Cavall wrote:

The fact that weapons armour and skills are all changed by archtypes in their "class features " means that two archtypes that change the same thing don't stack.

And yes, all the things you listed are class features.

I dunno. Mysterious Stranger makes a good point with ex-Paladins. If all the things listed are class features, does a fallen paladin lose all his HP's except those granted by Con bonus? Does his BAB become 0? Do his saving throws become 0?

Edit: I was on the no stacking side of things until this was mentioned. I don't think I've ever heard anyone propose a fallen paladin loses all those things. Normally he just stops being able to lay on hands, apply Cha to saves and such, loses his mount, his spells and any other ability specifically listed as a class feature.

really good point that RAI is probably on our side in this.


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber
Durngrun Stonebreaker wrote:
CalethosVB wrote:
Cavall wrote:
Class is class.

We're talking about class features. Are your class skills considered class features? If so, are your BAB, saving throws progression, and hit die size also considered class features? I think not. They are considered part of the class package, but aren't features of the class. Do monsters with skill ranks and class skills count those as class features? If so, do they count as having a character class because they have a class feature?

But, no, class skills are not class features. They are inherent to all classes and creatures and as such are not a "feature". The class skills selected are part of the class package, but not considered "class features".

So if two archetypes changed a class's hit die size or BAB, would they be allowed to stack?

sure if you can find that.

Liberty's Edge

Mysterious Stranger wrote:
list of class skills is not a class feature. A class feature by definition is only affected by the class that it is a feature of.

So uncanny dodge isn't a class feature?

Oracle curse?

Barbarian and rogue levels stack for uncanny dodge.
levels in other class count for the oracle curse.


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber
Diego Rossi wrote:
Mysterious Stranger wrote:
list of class skills is not a class feature. A class feature by definition is only affected by the class that it is a feature of.

So uncanny dodge isn't a class feature?

Oracle curse?

Barbarian and rogue levels stack for uncanny dodge.
levels in other class count for the oracle curse.

explicit exceptions

Liberty's Edge

Bandw2 wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:
Mysterious Stranger wrote:
list of class skills is not a class feature. A class feature by definition is only affected by the class that it is a feature of.

So uncanny dodge isn't a class feature?

Oracle curse?

Barbarian and rogue levels stack for uncanny dodge.
levels in other class count for the oracle curse.

explicit exceptions

Really? Several abilities affect other class features. To add another example the increase spell damage from some bloodline or from the wizard evocation school.

Mysterious Stranger definition is something that he has invented, but there are enough exceptions that show that his definition isn't so valid.


Diego Rossi wrote:
Mysterious Stranger wrote:
list of class skills is not a class feature. A class feature by definition is only affected by the class that it is a feature of.

So uncanny dodge isn't a class feature?

Oracle curse?

Barbarian and rogue levels stack for uncanny dodge.
levels in other class count for the oracle curse.

All the rules for uncanny dodge are listed under uncanny dodge. It has special rules for the feature.

Similarly, "Skills" might be a class feature of an archetype, that alters class skills. All the rules for the feature are listed under "Skills" in that archetype. That is not the same thing as the list of all class skills for a class, which is not a feature.

Multiple archetypes that affect Hit Dice or BAB might be incompatible, but not because they alter the same class feature. Those aren't class features. Taking two archetypes that alter BAB should probably also be disallowed, if it isn't already. However, it is not disallowed because both archetypes alter the same class feature.


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber
Diego Rossi wrote:
Bandw2 wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:
Mysterious Stranger wrote:
list of class skills is not a class feature. A class feature by definition is only affected by the class that it is a feature of.

So uncanny dodge isn't a class feature?

Oracle curse?

Barbarian and rogue levels stack for uncanny dodge.
levels in other class count for the oracle curse.

explicit exceptions

Really? Several abilities affect other class features. To add another example the increase spell damage from some bloodline or from the wizard evocation school.

Mysterious Stranger definition is something that he has invented, but there are enough exceptions that show that his definition isn't so valid.

bloodlines don't so things like uncanny dodge they simply work with all forms of spells.


What I meant is a class feature by definition is derived solely from the class that it is a feature of. Unless explicitly stated no other class can affect the actual class feature. Animal companion, oracles curse, and uncanny dodge all have explicit exception stated in the description of the class feature.

While a wizard’s school ability may be able to interact with class feature of another class they are only increased by gaining actual wizard levels. Your list of class skills on the other hand is increased by gaining levels in another class. A good example is channel energy. If I have two classes that both grant the ability to channel energy they do not stack. Each class has a completely separate pool that is not affected in any way by the other class’s pool.

Another reason the list of class skills is not a class feature is you can add class skills to a creature that does not have a class. An animal companion with an INT of 3 or higher can take any feat. So an animal companion who raised his INT or a paladin’s mount that starts with an INT of 6 can take a feat like addition traits, or cosmopolitan that adds skills to its list of class skills. So if a Halfling paladin takes a dog for his mount has the dog take addition traits to gain two traits. The dog then takes the traits to make sense motive and survival class skills. The dog has no class, but has a list of class skills.

Paizo Employee Official Rules Response

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Answered in FAQ!

FAQ wrote:

Archetype Stacking and Altering: What exactly counts as altering a class feature for the purpose of stacking archetypes?

In general, if a class feature grants multiple subfeatures, it’s OK to take two archetypes that only change two separate subfeatures. This includes two bard archetypes that alter or replace different bardic performances (even though bardic performance is technically a single class feature) or two fighter archetypes that replace the weapon training gained at different levels (sometimes referred to as “weapon training I, II, III, or IV”) even though those all fall under the class feature weapon training. However, if something alters the way the parent class feature works, such as a mime archetype that makes all bardic performances completely silent, with only visual components instead of auditory, you can’t take that archetype with an archetype that alters or replaces any of the sub-features. This even applies for something as small as adding 1 extra round of bardic performance each day, adding an additional bonus feat to the list of bonus feats you can select, or adding an additional class skill to the class. As always, individual GMs should feel free to houserule to allow small overlaps on a case by case basis, but the underlying rule exists due to the unpredictability of combining these changes.


Well, there you have it. Skills are now class features. The FAQ doesn't specifically say so, but by addressing them in the same sentence as bardic performance and bonus feats, and treating them the same, it makes it clear that skills are INTENDED to be class features.


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber

I'm more upset that this means that if two archetypes change different class skills they still won't stack. Oh, well, homebrew away as it says.

Grand Lodge

So Paladins watch out! If you anger your god, you forget everything about Religion that you know.


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber
Aydin D'Ampfer wrote:
So Paladins watch out! If you anger your god, you forget everything about Religion that you know.

just 15% but yeah, weird.


Bandw2 wrote:
Aydin D'Ampfer wrote:
So Paladins watch out! If you anger your god, you forget everything about Religion that you know.
just 15% but yeah, weird.

And 15% of Ride, and 15% of Heal, etc. That paladin's god is not only stingy with actual class features, but he strikes the fallen paladin with partial broad-spectrum amnesia, too.

Grand Lodge

Wait, you have Paladins that take 17 points into Knowledge Religion?

Normally I only see 1 point, and 0 Int. Meaning its a 75% drop.

But I'm also being mean to Pally's. And I need them. You know, to stay behind and die while I flee and collect my one prestige Point.


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber
Aydin D'Ampfer wrote:

Wait, you have Paladins that take 17 points into Knowledge Religion?

Normally I only see 1 point, and 0 Int. Meaning its a 75% drop.

But I'm also being mean to Pally's. And I need them. You know, to stay behind and die while I flee and collect my one prestige Point.

it was a scalar not a ratio :P


Hmm. The wording on that FAQ raises an interesting question.

The archetypes "Eldritch scion" and "Spelldancer" for the magus both alter his arcane pool class feature, yet are completely compatible mechanical sub-changes to the arcane pool class feature. Does the FAQ allow these two archetypes?

Spoiler:

spell dance wrote:

At 1st level, a spell dancer gains the ability to expend 1 point from his arcane pool as a swift action to gain a +10 enhancement bonus to his movement rate and a +2 dodge bonus to Armor Class against attacks of opportunity provoked by moving through threatened spaces for 1 minute. For every four levels beyond 1st, the spell dancer gains another +10 enhancement bonus to movement and +2 to AC against attacks of opportunity provoked from movement. At 5th level, once per spell dance as a swift action, the spell dancer may use one of the following on himself as a swift action: blur, fly, or haste. These abilities last for 1 round. At 9th level, the spell dancer may instead take a swift action to use dimension door as a spell-like ability once during a spelldance. At 13th level, the spell dancer may instead choose to take a swift action to gain freedom of movement for 1d4 rounds.

This ability replaces the magus's ability to expend points from his arcane pool as a swift action to grant any weapon he is holding magic bonuses for 1 minute.

eldritch pool wrote:

An eldritch scion gains an eldritch pool of personal magical energy, equal to 1/2 his magus level (minimum 1) + his Charisma modifier. As a swift action, he can spend a point of eldritch energy to enter a state of mystical focus for 2 rounds. This allows him to use abilities from his bloodrager bloodline as though he were in a bloodrage, though he gains none of the other benefits or drawbacks of bloodraging. At 4th level, an eldritch scion can also use his eldritch pool as an arcane pool, gaining all the benefits listed with the magus's arcane pool class feature.

Additionally, any magus's class feature or spell from the magus spell list that normally uses a calculation based on Intelligence is instead based on Charisma for an eldritch scion. For example, an eldritch scion with the arcane accuracy magus arcana grants himself an insight bonus on attacks equal to his Charisma bonus, not his Intelligence bonus. This has no effect on the eldritch scion's skills or skill points.

This ability replaces arcane pool, and abilities that modify arcane pool also modify eldritch pool.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Johnny_Devo wrote:

Hmm. The wording on that FAQ raises an interesting question.

The archetypes "Eldritch scion" and "Spelldancer" for the magus both alter his arcane pool class feature, yet are completely compatible mechanical sub-changes to the arcane pool class feature. Does the FAQ allow these two archetypes?
** spoiler omitted **

...

No... because one of the archetypes actually ELIMINATES the arcane pool, changing it to a pool of Eldritch Energy. Leaving the other with nothing to operate.


My quandary has been successfully answered and my curiosity has been sated. Thank you all for the lovely debate.


LazarX wrote:
Johnny_Devo wrote:

Hmm. The wording on that FAQ raises an interesting question.

The archetypes "Eldritch scion" and "Spelldancer" for the magus both alter his arcane pool class feature, yet are completely compatible mechanical sub-changes to the arcane pool class feature. Does the FAQ allow these two archetypes?
** spoiler omitted **

...

No... because one of the archetypes actually ELIMINATES the arcane pool, changing it to a pool of Eldritch Energy. Leaving the other with nothing to operate.

But it also says "abilities that modify arcane pool also modify eldritch pool" and "At 4th level, an eldritch scion can also use his eldritch pool as an arcane pool, gaining all the benefits listed with the magus's arcane pool class feature."

The spell dance ability only states "This ability replaces the magus's ability to expend points from his arcane pool as a swift action to grant any weapon he is holding magic bonuses for 1 minute."

Eldritch scion does not make you lose the ability to expend points from the pool for weapon bonuses, and it specifically calls out that other abilities can modify eldritch pool as if they're modifying arcane pool, so I feel like it's something allowable. Adding all the mechanics together also doesn't create any conflict of actual workings.

Paizo Employee Official Rules Response

Johnny_Devo wrote:
LazarX wrote:
Johnny_Devo wrote:

Hmm. The wording on that FAQ raises an interesting question.

The archetypes "Eldritch scion" and "Spelldancer" for the magus both alter his arcane pool class feature, yet are completely compatible mechanical sub-changes to the arcane pool class feature. Does the FAQ allow these two archetypes?
** spoiler omitted **

...

No... because one of the archetypes actually ELIMINATES the arcane pool, changing it to a pool of Eldritch Energy. Leaving the other with nothing to operate.

But it also says "abilities that modify arcane pool also modify eldritch pool" and "At 4th level, an eldritch scion can also use his eldritch pool as an arcane pool, gaining all the benefits listed with the magus's arcane pool class feature."

The spell dance ability only states "This ability replaces the magus's ability to expend points from his arcane pool as a swift action to grant any weapon he is holding magic bonuses for 1 minute."

Eldritch scion does not make you lose the ability to expend points from the pool for weapon bonuses, and it specifically calls out that other abilities can modify eldritch pool as if they're modifying arcane pool, so I feel like it's something allowable. Adding all the mechanics together also doesn't create any conflict of actual workings.

As per the FAQ, even a tiny alteration to bardic performance that changes performance to give a base of 5 rounds per day instead of 4 is sufficient to prevent you from taking any other archetypes that alter or replace any bardic performance. Similarly, the two listed magus archetypes don't work together; their changes are a lot bigger than 1 more round of performance.

The Exchange Owner - D20 Hobbies, Representative - D20 Hobbies

Johnny_Devo wrote:
But it also says "abilities that modify arcane pool also modify eldritch pool"

I guess this means you believe that neither modify or alter arcane pool class feature?


I guess my confusion is stemming from what is defined as a "subfeature". Is it more along the lines of, say, swashbuckler and gunslinger deeds, magus arcana, or something else that you gain different abilities as part of the same feature?


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber

I feel like this is going to make a lot of sad pandas.

The Exchange Owner - D20 Hobbies, Representative - D20 Hobbies

Johnny_Devo wrote:
I guess my confusion is stemming from what is defined as a "subfeature". Is it more along the lines of, say, swashbuckler and gunslinger deeds, magus arcana, or something else that you gain different abilities as part of the same feature?

I believe it is, yes.

Bardic Performance is the example, and some example sub features would be Fascinate. Something that modifies Bardic Performance to be more rounds per level would be incompatible with an archetype that swaps out Fascinate.

Edit: Ninja! I'm going to pause posting my opinions, as the dev team keeps posting after me ;-) No point adding my comments if the official comments are coming so fast. ;-)

Paizo Employee Official Rules Response

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Johnny_Devo wrote:
I guess my confusion is stemming from what is defined as a "subfeature". Is it more along the lines of, say, swashbuckler and gunslinger deeds, magus arcana, or something else that you gain different abilities as part of the same feature?

Yes, like deeds, which is technically a single class feature. Or bardic performances, as mentioned in the FAQ itself.


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber
Pathfinder Design Team wrote:
Johnny_Devo wrote:
I guess my confusion is stemming from what is defined as a "subfeature". Is it more along the lines of, say, swashbuckler and gunslinger deeds, magus arcana, or something else that you gain different abilities as part of the same feature?
Yes, like deeds, which is technically a single class feature. Or bardic performances, as mentioned in the FAQ itself.

can you comment on whether a paladin loses his class skills or not if he falls?


The ruling is consistent with how create Types are presented, but may require some minor clean-up of other text (such as the paladin) that were not written with this in mind.


Thanks for the spirited debate. I'm not even unhappy about being ruled wrong on this. Class Skills are "Class Features".


RJGrady wrote:
The ruling is consistent with how create Types are presented, but may require some minor clean-up of other text (such as the paladin) that were not written with this in mind.

I agree with Grady. This should be answered or tweaked or whatever the technical term happens to be.


Well, that was unhelpful. Aside from contradicting what is the overwhelming consensus of the written rules (everything aside from some archetype descriptions treats class features as a specific game term and separate from such things as skills, BAB, etc), it doesn't solve the overall question of what constitutes a class feature. If its every single thing a class gives you, including, say BAB, and saves, then the Ex-paladin feature is bizarre and basically means "Atone or create a new character," which is sort of the case now, (becoming a warrior class is a pretty big nerf anyway, but at least you still have the basics) but that definition makes it impossible to effectively play a fallen paladin. And that's just one example.

Tl;dr: Really wish they had actually given us a concrete and workable definition of what is and is not a class feature, rather than just FAQing this instance without giving us the principles to make further decisions.

Paizo Employee Official Rules Response

The FAQ request was specifically in regard to archetypes, not paladins.

The question in question:

Quote:
So, the question is: Are Skills considered Class Features when comparing Archetypes.


The FAQ request was because the definition of class feature was in doubt. The FAQ clarification doesn't really address that. But whatever. I don't have any control over how you address rules clarifications, just voicing disappointment.


DM_Blake wrote:
Well, there you have it. Skills are now class features. The FAQ doesn't specifically say so, but by addressing them in the same sentence as bardic performance and bonus feats, and treating them the same, it makes it clear that skills are INTENDED to be class features.

As you say, they didn't actually say that Class Skills are a Class Feature. They very specifically stated that they count as Class Features for the purpose of stacking archetypes. Aside from that one particular application, I don't see any reason to treat them as a Class Feature. As I see it, a fallen Paladin would still retain his Class Skills.

Edit: Ninja'd by the PDT. :)


If things like BAB, HP, saves and skills are now considered class features then a paladin or cleric who falls loses those. The only thing he retains will be weapon and armor proficiencies. This of course means that a wounded paladin or cleric who falls will probably die immediately.

Does this also mean that if you take an archetype that alters class skills you cannot take an archetype that alters class skills even for another class?

There is some major inconsistencies with this ruling.


Bandw2 wrote:
I feel like this is going to make a lot of sad pandas.

I know that I've seen people on the boards who combined Strangler Brawler and Snakebite Striker Brawler. That won't work now. Which other desirable archetype combos did this invalidate?

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