Some Initial Observations On The Vigilante


Ultimate Intrigue Playtest General Discussion

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Liberty's Edge

So, I'm currently running a CotCT game, where the players have just rescued the hero Blackjack. So...this Class is probably getting some playtesting at least to the point of rebuilding that character as this class. But first, some initial observations:

Firstly, this is a really interesting idea. I like the base Class chassis for the most part, and definitely like the modular nature of the Specializations. So, let's look at those two things separately:

Base Class:

As someone else noted, it's seriously weird and off that Intimidate isn't a baseline Class Skill for a Vigilante.

Dual Identity is interesting and fun. I like it. That said...the jump between 5 minutes and one full round at 13th level is seriously weird. It seems tailor-made to have an intermediate '1 minute' level at 7th.

The last sentence of Dual Identity is also unclear, I'm pretty sure it's intended to mean you can't Scry for Blackjack and find his secret identity...but by a strict reading, if you know his secret identity socially and have met Blackjack and you Scry for either one, you can find the other if they're out and about. That's pretty clearly wrong.

Renown is a real problem in making Blackjack. He's explicitly a 9th-10th level character known throughout Korvosa (a city of 16k people or so). The Renown rules also make it impossible to be 'The Hero of Absalom!' even at 20th level...which seems off. Frankly, it seems like the maximum community size should be higher and there should maybe be more than three categories.

Loyal Aid is weird, and I think perhaps counter to the theme, which is clearly to be just about any costumed adventurer. Some very clearly don't have that particular advantage. Beyond the Gather Information use, their abilities are also ill-defined. Heck, there's not even a duration listed.

Specializations:

I'll begin by saying that I like how Avenger works for the most part, and like Zealot and Warlock a lot.

But Stalker has this problem where, the vast majority of the time, they're like a Rogue, only slightly worse. And not an Unchained Rogue, the corebook version. I mean, they have better skills (though less of them) and a better Will Save...but lack Evasion, and have much worse Sneak Attack. Frankly, they're on par with Slayers in most ways (even socially...a Slayer can use Studied Target to be real good at social stuff) except with (by 20th level) -10 to hit, -10 HP, and -5 damage. Their Talents aren't nearly good enough to make up for that disparity.

They need to poach some form of accuracy enhancer (possibly the Unchained Rogue's Disabling Strike, or the aforementioned Studied Target) or they're gonna be really underpowered compared to, well, most things.

Avenger suffers a little of the same problem, with Full BAB and Fighter Feats not really making up for Studied Target and Sneak Attack both when comparing them to the Slayer. Their Talents go further to making up for it, but they still need an accuracy enhancer. It's also a bit sad that Avenger lacks Acrobatics as a Class Skill given that a lot of characters who should be built as one of them have it.

Warlock and Zealot do a lot better, but their spells known are a bit more limited than any existing casters, meaning they could stand a bi of a power-up...so I'd actually advise a general accuracy booster for Vigilantes in general. Something on par with Studied Target. After all, that got given to Inquisitors in an Archetype...why not these guys?

So...short version is: Looking over the Specializations, I think the base class needs an accuracy booster of some sort.

Liberty's Edge

Re-reading that, it comes off as a bit negative. That's not really my intent. I'm just much better at analyzing structures looking for flaws than I am at paying compliments.

So...I really like the Vigilante conceptually and think the basic structure and most of the Talents are very sound for the most part...I'm just not seeing how it can manage to be on par with a Slayer or Inquisitor or Bard (the three most comparable Classes) in combat.

Plus noting little bits of mechanical weirdness, of course.


Also that one feature granting a pounce at -4 AC in addition to charge negatives should really get looked at again. For a class with such weak offence having -4 AC on your one good trick for damage is uneccessary.

Also Hide in plain Sight should also be a talent on the avenger instead of just the Stalker. Maybe at level 10 or 12.


Deadmanwalking wrote:

But Stalker has this problem where, the vast majority of the time, they're like a Rogue, only slightly worse. And not an Unchained Rogue, the corebook version. I mean, they have better skills (though less of them) and a better Will Save...but lack Evasion, and have much worse Sneak Attack. Frankly, they're on par with Slayers in most ways (even socially...a Slayer can use Studied Target to be real good at social stuff) except with (by 20th level) -10 to hit, -10 HP, and -5 damage. Their Talents aren't nearly good enough to make up for that disparity.

They need to poach some form of accuracy enhancer (possibly the Unchained Rogue's Disabling Strike, or the aforementioned Studied Target) or they're gonna be really underpowered compared to, well, most things.

You can already get accuracy boost through Surprise Strike talent: bonuses to hit when foe denied Dex to AC. Granted it is slow to boost )wish the progression was more fluid or higher)

Perfect Vulnerability (8th lv talent) is 1/foe, but targeting touch AC is nice. Helps with accuracy.


I feel half of the Avenger's abilities and half of the Stalker's abilities could potentially be nixed and the two specializations could be combined creating a more balanced class where individually they both fall short of the classes they emulate.

It also more completes the Batman mantra the class seems to be going for.

Liberty's Edge

Insain Dragoon wrote:
Also that one feature granting a pounce at -4 AC in addition to charge negatives should really get looked at again. For a class with such weak offence having -4 AC on your one good trick for damage is uneccessary.

This is probably fair. Barbarians get it with no downside and two levels earlier after all. Of course, it has prerequisites...

Insain Dragoon wrote:
Also Hide in plain Sight should also be a talent on the avenger instead of just the Stalker. Maybe at level 10 or 12.

I'd actually be inclined to argue the Avenger having less Stealth stuff if anything. That's not a universal vigilante feature in fiction, after all...

Starbuck_II wrote:
You can already get accuracy boost through Surprise Strike talent: bonuses to hit when foe denied Dex to AC. Granted it is slow to boost )wish the progression was more fluid or higher)

It's actually really hard to deny foes Dex to AC. It pretty much happens in the surprise round and that's it. +3 to hit foes during the surprise round is not the kind of Class Feature you can rely on to be effective in combat (though it is potentially nice).

Starbuck_II wrote:
Perfect Vulnerability (8th lv talent) is 1/foe, but targeting touch AC is nice. Helps with accuracy.

1/day Talents being needed to hit do not a balanced Class make...

master_marshmallow wrote:

I feel half of the Avenger's abilities and half of the Stalker's abilities could potentially be nixed and the two specializations could be combined creating a more balanced class where individually they both fall short of the classes they emulate.

It also more completes the Batman mantra the class seems to be going for.

That'd be an interesting way to do it. Not sure it's the right route to take, but it'd certainly help if done properly.

Shadow Lodge

Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Starfinder Superscriber
Deadmanwalking wrote:
It's actually really hard to deny foes Dex to AC. It pretty much happens in the surprise round and that's it. +3 to hit foes during the surprise round is not the kind of Class Feature you can rely on to be effective in combat (though it is potentially nice).

That implies to me that there ought to be a talent that synergizes really well with Feinting. There isn't a class that really has that shtick at the moment, and it would be a good way to increase the effectiveness of the things that feed of of denying foes Dex to AC.


I wouldn't use Blackjack as the measuring stick by which the class (or any of its myriad abilities) function or don't function. At least as regards renown:

1) The Blackjack identity has been around for centuries, and is larger than one man.
2) He may well be known throughout the entire city of Korvosa, but his activities are largely restricted to one or two city blocks worth of areas in which he gets his bonuses; outside of that, he is known but either regarded skeptically, or because he isn't active there, just doesn't have the same sway. This is an interpretation that could certainly be represented by the playtest rules.

(Also, Vencarlo has magic items that explicitly grant him some of the dual identity benefits afforded by the class, so he may not even actually be a Vigilante. Perhaps he is as he was under 3E, Fighter/Rogue, or perhaps he is a Swashbuckler or something.)


If I ever ran Curse of the Crimson Throne I had always intended to run Vencarlo as a mysterious avenger swashbuckler.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

You expected Batman, but instead we got.

This.

Liberty's Edge

pH unbalanced wrote:
That implies to me that there ought to be a talent that synergizes really well with Feinting. There isn't a class that really has that shtick at the moment, and it would be a good way to increase the effectiveness of the things that feed of of denying foes Dex to AC.

Even then, you shouldn't have to invest a talent in a certain baseline of effectiveness. Now if Stalker (or Vigilante in general) automatically came with Greater Feint and the ability to feint as a Swift Action...that'd be a different matter. And a functional accuracy increaser.

Maybe more complicated than it needs to be, though.

Cthulhudrew wrote:
I wouldn't use Blackjack as the measuring stick by which the class (or any of its myriad abilities) function or don't function. At least as regards renown:

Well, Blackjack really only comes up as regards to Renown. And if the character you immediately think of when you think of the Class, from the official world, can't be built with that Class...something is wrong with the Class.

And besides, Blackjack aside, I see no reason a high level Vigilante shouldn't be known throughout a 100k citizen city like Absalom or Goka. Indeed, I'd think that being known throughout such a city should very much be an achievable goal for a Vigilante PC.

Cthulhudrew wrote:
1) The Blackjack identity has been around for centuries, and is larger than one man.

Sure...but if the Class doesn't let you play legacy heroes, there's a serious thematic problem given how common those are in the fiction this is clearly designed to emulate.

Cthulhudrew wrote:
2) He may well be known throughout the entire city of Korvosa, but his activities are largely restricted to one or two city blocks worth of areas in which he gets his bonuses; outside of that, he is known but either regarded skeptically, or because he isn't active there, just doesn't have the same sway. This is an interpretation that could certainly be represented by the playtest rules.

This runs right back into the above point where if a Class literally can't be used to create the most obvious character who could be an example of that Class in the world's fiction...something has gone wrong.


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DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:

You expected Batman, but instead we got.

This.

No joke, that is one of his powers you can take as a talent.

He appears dead but auto stabilizes waiting for foes to leave.

Shadow Lodge

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I'm finding the Zealot to at least appear to be extremely underwhelming.

Why would you want to play the Zealot (and such a terrible name) when you could play the Inquisitor? Most of the talents are looking very lack-luster, and I don't think it helps that it's kind of a boring blob of the Cleric, Druid, and Oracle thrown together wen the only common aspect of those classes is that they cast divine spells.

Maybe I'm just missing something, but I really don't see any incentive to play a Zealot Vigilante at all. Maybe drop all the support options and refocus it on a divine smiter. Give the option between Wisdom or Cha focus? Maybe even just give the Warlock the option to cast divine or arcane spells and drop the zealot completely?

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Nargemn wrote:
If I ever ran Curse of the Crimson Throne I had always intended to run Vencarlo as a mysterious avenger swashbuckler.

I am currently playing one of those through Iron Gods, so I thought the conversion to an avenger vigilante would make a good comparison.

I am... less than impressed.

-2 hp, -2 init, +3 Will save, -1 attack, -9 (!) damage, -parry, +limited version of Spring Attack, +Vital Strike and a cool AoO trick with it (although only +1d6 damage, so...), +2 AC, +a few skill bonuses here and there.

I'd be willing to call it a wash but for the damage loss. It's... painful.

Paizo Employee Designer

Shisumo wrote:
Nargemn wrote:
If I ever ran Curse of the Crimson Throne I had always intended to run Vencarlo as a mysterious avenger swashbuckler.

I am currently playing one of those through Iron Gods, so I thought the conversion to an avenger vigilante would make a good comparison.

I am... less than impressed.

-2 hp, -2 init, +3 Will save, -1 attack, -9 (!) damage, -parry, +limited version of Spring Attack, +Vital Strike and a cool AoO trick with it (although only +1d6 damage, so...), +2 AC, +a few skill bonuses here and there.

I'd be willing to call it a wash but for the damage loss. It's... painful.

To be fair, with avenger you could have gone two-handed or TWF, though.


DM Beckett wrote:

I'm finding the Zealot to at least appear to be extremely underwhelming.

Why would you want to play the Zealot (and such a terrible name) when you could play the Inquisitor? Most of the talents are looking very lack-luster, and I don't think it helps that it's kind of a boring blob of the Cleric, Druid, and Oracle thrown together wen the only common aspect of those classes is that they cast divine spells.

Maybe I'm just missing something, but I really don't see any incentive to play a Zealot Vigilante at all. Maybe drop all the support options and refocus it on a divine smiter. Give the option between Wisdom or Cha focus? Maybe even just give the Warlock the option to cast divine or arcane spells and drop the zealot completely?

Agreed, they gave the Warlock all the cool options like bombs, mystic bolt, arcane striker, etc.

Stalwart is the mainly cool trick Zealot offers. They need to offer more diverse abilities to Zealot.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Mark Seifter wrote:
Shisumo wrote:
I'd be willing to call it a wash but for the damage loss. It's... painful.
To be fair, with avenger you could have gone two-handed or TWF, though.

Granted - but without Power Attack, two-handed only gets me back about 2 damage, while potentially costing me a lot of AC. Certainly, if I keep the AC, I don't get to keep Vital Punishment or Close the Gap. With Power Attack, I can do better - but this is also a class without built in attack bonuses, so I'm not sure that my DPR is going to be rewarded as well as I would like for that tradeoff.

The same problem, but probably moreso, applies to TWF (unless I cheat via Shield of Fury).

Shadow Lodge

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Paizo really needs to watch Boondock Saints. All I gotta say on the Zealot.


Deadmanwalking wrote:
Well, Blackjack really only comes up as regards to Renown. And if the character you immediately think of when you think of the Class, from the official world, can't be built with that Class...something is wrong with the Class.

I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree that that makes something wrong with the class. He can still function perfectly well within the playtest rules as written, if you choose to remake him as a Vigilante. As Vencarlo he treats NPCs in his community (presumably Old Korvosa) as one attitude category more positive, and as Blackjack he gains a +6 Intimidate bonus within 9 miles of Old Korvosa. That sounds about right to me; no particular reason that all of the serfs and peasants of Korvosa would treat Vencarlo as anything special (many of them probably look down on him as nobility), and 9 miles is pretty much sufficient to cover the entirety of Korvosa. (And again, I don't see why he would necessarily be so completely effective everywhere in the city. IIRC, Blackjack only operates within Old Korvosa- much like Daredevil in Hell's Kitchen. Even certain writings of Batman don't have him as effective all over the entirety of Gotham. Though you often have to ignore the fact that this shadowy figure of legend also happens to very publicly run with the Justice League.)

Quote:
And besides, Blackjack aside, I see no reason a high level Vigilante shouldn't be known throughout a 100k citizen city like Absalom or Goka. Indeed, I'd think that being known throughout such a city should very much be an achievable goal for a Vigilante PC.

There are still the Fame/Reputation rules from Ultimate Campaign.

Liberty's Edge

Yeah, in terms of combat, just looking at how it would change my Blackjack build (currently mostly Swashbuckler)...

We're talking -2 to hit, -11 damage, +3 Will Save (but loses Charmed Life), +9 skill points (which is nice), -1 HP, the loss of all Deeds (which is awful), and an AC penalty.

Even with a Greatsword instead and wearing Plate...that only recoups damage to a net loss of -4.5 and AC to about equivalent (and necessitates most of his Talents be spent on it).

Both versions also lose Gloves of Dueling, which really hurts.

Without a boost, I'm not seeing any real reason to go with more than one or maybe two level of Vigilante. I mean...you get the basic ability at level 1, and a Vigilante 1/Swashbuckler 8 (or Vigilante 1/Barbarian 8, or whatever) is flatly better than a straight Vigilante 9.

This is admittedly less true of casters, but even there, unless you really want Dual Identity a Bard or Inquisitor is almost universally better than the Vigilante at, well, most things.

Liberty's Edge

Cthulhudrew wrote:
I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree that that makes something wrong with the class. He can still function perfectly well within the playtest rules as written, if you choose to remake him as a Vigilante. As Vencarlo he treats NPCs in his community (presumably Old Korvosa) as one attitude category more positive, and as Blackjack he gains a +6 Intimidate bonus within 9 miles of Old Korvosa. That sounds about right to me; no particular reason that all of the serfs and peasants of Korvosa would treat Vencarlo as anything special (many of them probably look down on him as nobility), and 9 miles is pretty much sufficient to cover the entirety of Korvosa.

Well, it's not like it's very wrong. I'm just suggesting upping the maximum community size. That's...really not too big a change.

And not being able to effect all Korvosa with the full effect when the rules specifically note that Blackjack (and indeed Vencarlo Orsini) are respected city-wide is indeed a problem (though hardly the end of the world).

Cthulhudrew wrote:
There are still the Fame/Reputation rules from Ultimate Campaign.

Yeah...but if you have an ability like Renown right there in the class, you probably shouldn't need to use them.


master_marshmallow wrote:

I feel half of the Avenger's abilities and half of the Stalker's abilities could potentially be nixed and the two specializations could be combined creating a more balanced class where individually they both fall short of the classes they emulate.

It also more completes the Batman mantra the class seems to be going for.

[Emphasis mine] I'm not sure I understand this. Why would you want to make them fall short?

Liberty's Edge

Oceanshieldwolf wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:

I feel half of the Avenger's abilities and half of the Stalker's abilities could potentially be nixed and the two specializations could be combined creating a more balanced class where individually they both fall short of the classes they emulate.

It also more completes the Batman mantra the class seems to be going for.

[Emphasis mine] I'm not sure I understand this. Why would you want to make them fall short?

Uh...he's saying they currently fall short, not that he wants them to.


I agree.

The Talents for Avenger and Stalker both feel very incomplete when separated, but feel much more whole when combined.


* I really like the Avenger's talent options, love the armor help and direct attacks every round - these kind of tactical powers that are a stape of 3PP classes will be appearing more often in Paizo classes I am sure.

* The Stalker feels a little lacklustre, both thematically and mechanically. Needs a gickload of talents to represent the many kinds of skill-monkeys and stealthjacks.

* The Warlock and Zealot appear to be an attempt to both satisfy Dr. Strange archetypal superheroes, and satisfy caster fans. I don't think this is the chassis to recreate those kind of superheroes, nor am I interested in a spellcaster Vigilante.

However, I understand it is a common design space (casters - who knew! ;p) so I'm willing to leave it go.

* I'm sure this will feels on as deaf ears as were turned to requests to rename/queries as to why such were named Skalds and Warpriests, but here goes - please not Warlock, or Zealot. In fact I'm not sure I like Avenger or Stalker, though that may be because of oW's Stalker, and that Avenger always feels like it is an after-the-fact occupation.

Liberty's Edge

I think Jason Buhlman's already mentioned by the time they've announced a name for a class, it's too late to change it. Too many wheels in motion already.


Oh. Thanks dmw.


I'm sure this is already a thing in the designer's minds, buyt there should also be an archetype or, at least, a specialisation that makes the social alter ego/identity the superhero, and the other alter ego/identity is the more mundane version.

Silver Crusade

Insain Dragoon wrote:

I agree.

The Talents for Avenger and Stalker both feel very incomplete when separated, but feel much more whole when combined.

+1 to this

While I'm really, really excited about this class and playtest, my concerns on first read that others have echoed are...

>Stalker feels like a rogue archtype

>Zealot feels like an inquisitor archtype. Do they even get favored weapon or did I miss that.

>Warlock seems fun but a lot of abilities seem keyed into being adjacent to foes which seems odd for a spellcaster.

Regardless, I'll give at least one of them a testdrive during PFS play.

Liberty's Edge

You don't really need a Favored weapon when you get martial weapon proficiency, though I guess it would be nice. Especially as most of the Zealot specialization seems like it's underpowered in anything but a campaign where you're constantly being scryed by enemies. Especially considering the Zealot never gets Bane or Judgements, doesn't channel as well as a cleric, and has no where near the build versatility of the oracle or shaman, to say nothing of the casting ability.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Pawns Subscriber

Initial thoughts, starting from the very beginning of the class:

1. Weapon and Armor Proficiency: "Baker by day; Vigilante by night," this guy has no business knowing how to wield martial weapons or shields, or even medium armor. I say remove all those, and instead grant them "Any one Exotic Weapon Proficiency of choice, or Catch Off-Guard or Throw Anything feat." Perhaps then add "medium armor + shields" as an Avenger talent. I don't really see a Warlock or anything else really slinging shield and medium armor...


Insain Dragoon wrote:
>Warlock seems fun but a lot of abilities seem keyed into being adjacent to foes which seems odd for a spellcaster.

I actually think that's a cool concept. Right now the only spellcaster-focused class we have that wants to be in the fray is Magus. The idea of a caster for whom Casting Defensively is a viable option, rather than a fallback for when you have nowhere to 5' step away to, is really neat to me.

Liberty's Edge

Let's examine something here:

A Vigilante (Avenger) 3/Slayer 10 vs. a Vigilante (Avenger) 13:

Their stats and base Feats are identical (we'll say they use two-handed weapons), and they have the following Talents:

Straight Vigilante: Armor of Silence, Signature Weapon, Combat Skill (Power Attack), Heavy Training, Mad Rush,

Slayer: Weapon Training, Ranger Combat Style (Power Attack), Combat Trick (Heavy Armor Proficiency), Fast Stealth, Evasion, and (as his Avenger Talent) Armor Silence.

The Slayer has, with Studied Target, +3 to hit and +1 damage, plus 3d6 Sneak Attack, and +8 HP over the Vigilante. He has a flat +3 to a wide variety of skills which stacks with his +4 to one of his choice and to Intimidate from Vigilante. He has a better Fortitude Save and possesses Evasion. He can also Stealth at double the speed of the Vigilante.

The Vigilante can transform into his Vigilante Identity as a Full Round Action instead of by taking 5 minutes, has a larger area in which his bonuses from Renown applies, gets +6 to Gathering Information, and +4 to two skills the Slayer doesn't (though actually, with Studied Target, the Slayer probably gets +3 to them most of the time). He has a better Will Save. He saves some money on not having to buy Mithral Armor (assuming low Dex), and can Pounce, albeit at great cost (-6 AC hurts).

That's...not looking good for the Vigilante. If you can get everything good the Class grants with a two or three level dip...there's a problem there. The only thing the Vigilante remotely has going for him over the multiclassed character is Pounce, and that's a very risky tactic the way it's set up (and can be gotten a couple of times a day with items...Quick Runner's Shirt and Stagger-Proof Boots).


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I set myself to building a level 8 Vigilante Warlock last night (I have lots of Emerald Spire GM credits lying around) and I noticed the crippling line WAY too late.

Vigilante Specialization wrote:

The base ability and bonus class skills

apply when the vigilante is in either of his identities, but
all of the other abilities are available only when he is in his
vigilante identity, unless stated otherwise.

This completely negates the point of Concealed Casting, IMO. If I'm Batman with spells, but nobody knows I have spells in Bruce Wayne form, being able to disguise a Charm Person mid-conversation is awesome. It does me little good when I'm Batman.

Also, do I need to specifically go to Batman form to prep spells higher than level 1? If you are Bruce Wayne, are your spell slots and spells prepared just suspended until the next time you're Batman? Arcane Training, after all, is not in the category of "stated otherwise" for the Vigilante Specialization ability.

And, with that, I close with the observation that level 13 is a long, LONG way off for Quick Change. It creates a significant area of gameplay where your social persona is absolutely useless, particularly in organized play. I would rather see it as a talent than only available to Seekers.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Serisan wrote:
Also, do I need to specifically go to Batman form to prep spells higher than level 1? If you are Bruce Wayne, are your spell slots and spells prepared just suspended until the next time you're Batman? Arcane Training, after all, is not in the category of "stated otherwise" for the Vigilante Specialization ability.

Yeah, that's an interesting question. I would have assumed that, as a modification of the base ability, the higher spell levels would apply, but that's not actually written down anywhere. And let's say that a warlock character starts the day in her vigilante persona, but during the day determines that she needs to swap over to her social one for some reason. Then, as night falls, she decides it's time to go to work protecting her city. What's happened to her spells in the meantime? Did she just lose everything that was higher than 1st level, and has to re-prep? Does everything come back as it was before? I'd assume the latter, but it really seems like it ought to be stated.

Shadow Lodge

So far, just building a few characters, I'm not liking the class. At level one, I'm really considering just playing an NPC class with the flavor of the alternate identity. It seems like it really takes a very specific sort of game or much higher level play for the Dual Identity or Social Graces features to even matter, which makes level one look very, very boring, (outside of fluff only).

Level 2 the class finally starts to kick in, but feels too little, too late. I'm honestly thinking that level one should grant a Talent and you get an additional one at level 2, but then the way that so many require a certain level, there really isn't enough to matter. There are not a lot of actual choices, though it seems there are at a glance.

I decided to go with Zealot, though I'm also looking at Avenger. Really, to get the class(s) to do what I actually want, I think it would require multiclassing into Vigilante twice. Actually a Avenger Stalker Zealot could be pretty cool.

I'm not thrilled with Divine Training. It's basically a Class Feature tax, with almost nothing on the Talent list worth really having until much later on, often when it's far too late to really matter.

Running a few mock combats, the Zealot is pretty lack luster. NPC class quality. I see no reason to play it over an Inquisitor, Cleric, or even a Rogue. A Rogue could take the ability to cast a few spells and orisons and basically do the same thing, but more and better. Similar with a Bard. This is especially true at low levels when wands and the normal supplements to shore up on weakness are still out of grasp.

Cha based casting is meh. The fact that it doesn't have a Divine Aura, doesn't seem to have any way to add other classes divine spells (or even Domain spells or the like) adds to how limiting the class seems to be.

It doesn't seem to fit well as an alternate Cleric or Druid class at all, nor the Paladin or Warpriest. Extremely minor nods towards the Oracle and the Inquisitor, in all cases just feels very inferior, and with the way Divine Training works, I honestly don't see that changing, ever.

My suggestion would be to break the Zealot up into 2 distinct classes, with one focusing on a sort of primal (Druid, Oracle, Shaman, & Witch) focus and the other a divine champion (Battle Cleric, Inquisitor, & Warpriest). Absolutely drop all "support" options as they just do not fit with the theme of the class.

Things I feel are notably lacking are options for various divine protections. No Divine Grace, Wis to Ac, or the like. Moreso than the other three, the Zealot is pretty MAD, but it just doesn't work well with itself at all and it's not really particularly worth it. It kind of doesn't have a dump stat, though as written Wisdom seems to be the most likely, and the class seems to beg to be ranged only to have a chance to really function at all, (on par with an NPC class, at least).

Alternatively, a "divine trickster" refocus for the Specialization could work very well.

A level 2 Inquisitor essentially has a Zealot's Domain (free), a much better version of Divine Bastion (Judgments), Stern Gaze (free), Divine Training All (free), the same Skill Points with more Class Skills, similar Weapons and Armor, and Track (free). In addition, they also get free Detect Alignment, Monster Lore, and Cunning Initiative. Spellcasting is basically identical. The Zealot gets a free +4 to one skill and basically a limited version Hat of Disguise and Undetectable Alignment ish ability. Something that are pretty easy to afford (for anyone) pretty soon.

Liberty's Edge

Here is one of my builds I'll be trying out.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
DM Beckett wrote:
So far, just building a few characters, I'm not liking the class.

Have or did you actually PLAY any of these characters before passing judgement?

Shadow Lodge

LazarX wrote:
DM Beckett wrote:
So far, just building a few characters, I'm not liking the class.
Have or did you actually PLAY any of these characters before passing judgement?

Soon, but no. As stated, it was just a few mock combats and character builds. Initial observations only. Sadly, it's unlikely I will be able to playtest it beyond level one, though maybe.


LazarX wrote:
DM Beckett wrote:
So far, just building a few characters, I'm not liking the class.
Have or did you actually PLAY any of these characters before passing judgement?

Theorycrafting and comparison to other classes (e.g. building an Avenger Vigilante, then building a Fighter, and comparing their numbers) can be just as helpful as actual play experience.

Shadow Lodge

Can be sometimes, but until I've seen it played in multiple different encounters, I don't think there is any real comparison. The problem I see, though, is the class trades out far, far too much just to be almost on par in some very contrived special encounters. At least for the Zealot. I just don't see any reason to play this over an Inquisitor who has almost the same stuff, but better and more.

It would be better to just make Dual Identity a Feat and drop the entire Zealot Specialty. Might even be better to just drop the entire Vigilante and make that a Feat anyone and everyone can take. At the same time, though, the Stalker and the Avenger look pretty solid. Warlock has some pretty cool options that make picking between more spells a difficult decision.


Alright, just finished my readthrough. The biggest note I have is one that has been mentioned before. The class is only good when the GM lets it be good. The core of your class does not pertain to about 75% of traditional adventures, and unless your opponents use a lot of divinitations it's not as good as several other options even in the remaining 25.

The community size scales WAY too slow as well. By level 20, you should be known at LEAST throughout your home plane. Bruce Wayne and Tony Stark are good examples (Tony admits his identity, but even before then he was known worldwide). If I die at that point, I want the angel who asks me my name at Heaven's Gate to recoil in terror should I give him my Vigilante Name instead of my Social one.

I'm personally not particularly interested in yet another spellcaster class, especially one which trades off your big hitters for a situational class core. If you want to make Dr. Strange, you can probably do it better without going full Vancian. Give it cantrips/orisons for utility and backup, then make the talents lean more on (Su) stuff along those lines. Making Selena Kyle/Catwoman as a Stalker is one thing. Being able to make her as a Zealot invoking animal aspects with Isis the cat as a true familiar is way cooler.

I'm rambling a bit, so I'll sum it up. You have a decent class with a LOT of good ideas, but they're scattered and unfocused, dependent on circumstances that are difficult or impossible to obtain in regular gaming in order to become ALMOST as effective as options that currently exist.


Honestly I also feel this class kinda competes with the Alchemist/Master Chymist for the same kinda schtick

Shadow Lodge

Something else I'm pretty concerned about is that it kind of seems that Dual Identity is too infallible, which I don't think is good for an NPC villain who already has DM Fiat working for them. I know if I where playing a Diviner or Cleric that and spent the pretty costly resources to cast a lot of the Divination spells, I'd feel cheated or robbed when I autofail. It would NOT add tension or flavor or fun, it would highlight the GMNPC aspect we all hate.

Instead, just make it a straight up (and fair) contested roll. Each level higher or lower grants a +1/-1 to the roll, so a 10th level Cleric asking their Deity to locate Baron Von Badass (the 13th level Vigilante) would make a contested roll:

Cleric 1d20+10
vs
Vigilante 1d20+13. (maybe even throw in an extra +2-+5 here if they don't know both identities or something)

Cleric wins, the spell works. Vigilante wins, they can't be located/scryed/whatever. (possibly even by that character until they attain a new level or something)


I do agree that each specialization should have an ability tied to it, that comes online at 1st level.

I don't liked taxed spellcasting progressions, and letting those be what you acquire at 1st level so you can spend your talents on things you actually want would be much better.

Stalker and Avenger really need to be combined together and have their talents shaved down. Wasting two talents just to be able to use heavy armor is worse than feat taxing proficiency in it. Both of those talents are about the same power level as an individual trait.

Unarmed Strike talent also needs to allow the Vigilante to pick up monk only feats like the brawler.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Pawns Subscriber
Purple Dragon Knight wrote:

Initial thoughts, starting from the very beginning of the class:

1. Weapon and Armor Proficiency: "Baker by day; Vigilante by night," this guy has no business knowing how to wield martial weapons or shields, or even medium armor. I say remove all those, and instead grant them "Any one Exotic Weapon Proficiency of choice, or Catch Off-Guard or Throw Anything feat." Perhaps then add "medium armor + shields" as an Avenger talent. I don't really see a Warlock or anything else really slinging shield and medium armor...

If you think about most super heroes / vigilante genre characters, like Daredevil, they'll have weird weapon that's unusual or fight really good with whatever street sign or bar stool they get their hands on... maybe I should also suggest "or improved unarmed strike" as this would make the most sense with a cape type with a secret identity

2. Two alignments in one brain??!?!? I can't truly grasp the two alignment concept... really they should have a real alignment and perhaps their mundane/social alias should "pretend" to be a different alignment for the sake of blending into the society they live in, but to have two separate alignment in one brain just borders too much on multiple identity disorder to me... or maybe that's the point? I mean oracles have "curses" and this vigilante, well, he's just bat s@$& crazy and you have to accept it? if not, make it "Vigilante have one true alignment, but they can pretend to be any one other alignment within one step of their true alignment for the purpose of spell effects, alignment detection, and so on."


You guys do realize you don't to have the alignments different. Both identities can have the same alignment.


I double-checked and didn't see Owen's name, but this has his thumb-prints all over it. The vigilante covers a lot of the same territory as the Masked Adventurer Anachronistic Archetype. The warlock is similar to the volur in terms of bolting 6th level casting onto a base class, while the avenger is much like an enforcer and the stalker like a daredevil.

The zealot feels like inquisitor-lite. It's not super exciting, but still, I might go for the Cha-based casting and the Stalwart talent.


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Remove the specializations and just have the vigilante pick what it wants to do.

What would the secret identity do in an AP that matters? This is a major class feature and seems to do nothing of substance except impose limitations. I feel a major class feature shouldn't limit players, it should give options thematic to the class.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Cubic Prism wrote:

Remove the specializations and just have the vigilante pick what it wants to do.

What would the secret identity do in an AP that matters? This is a major class feature and seems to do nothing of substance except impose limitations. I feel a major class feature shouldn't limit players, it should give options thematic to the class.

If the AP isn't centered on intrique... The Vigilante is simply not meant for your classic dungeon crawl, where the monsters and the orcs sitting guarding chests in their 10x10 foot rooms couldn't care beans what your secret identity is.

The Vigilante is simply better suited for a more urban, crime oriented camapign, especially where both identities play a part.

"Who are these masked freaks?"

"They call themselves.. The Guardians of Absalom"

"Bunch of &%&%holes,"

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