Ultimate Combat Familiar build


Advice


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Heya! I'm working on building the ultimate combat familiar.

I know familiars are awful at combat and die easy but who cares this is just for fun. :)

I've dug around the familiars and the highest strength familiar that I can find is the improved familiar Nycar. With the "Mauler" archetype he quickly gets his strength into the 20s. He also has ferocity and regeneration which means he potentially is hard to permanently kill without cold iron. His feats however are bad in my opinion.

race advantages?
Small sized creatures can potentially ride a "mauler" familiar

classes that directly buff familiars?
witch (beast bonded) - can give feats to your familiar at the cost of your own which may be counterproductive at times
rogue (carnivalist) - gives the familiar a small sneak attack
Bard (duetist) - buffs/heals/ability to sing bard songs

feats that directly buff familiars?
eldricht heritage - if your a beast bonded witch you can give your familiar eldricht heritage feats and give him awesome abilities. For example the Marid bloodline turns any familiar into an at-will-water-shooting version of Squirtle.
evolve familiar - eidolon evolutions
distant spell link - seems important if your throwing your familiar into combat
improved spell sharing - its a teamwork feat so its harder to pull off but basically buff yourself and your familiar at the same time
share healing - also a teamwork feat, but still handy if you can pull it off
spirit's gift - give it some really cool shaman abilities that last all day
telepathic link - not really combat handy in too many situations but still a solid pick
unfettered familiar - lets your familiar deliver touch spells without having to start next to you OR have line of sight, solid.

What kinds of things am I missing that you can think of?


Unless I'm mistaken, improved familiars can't take the mauler archetype because they dont get the option to lose the ability to communicate with others of their kind

Grand Lodge

thelemonache wrote:

Heya! I'm working on building the ultimate combat familiar.

I know familiars are awful at combat and die easy but who cares this is just for fun. :)

What kinds of things am I missing that you can think of?

Eldritch Guardian with a Mauler Familiar Fox or Goat. You have a full BAB familiar that shares your combat feats (power attack for one).

Focus on natural weapons so you both can share weapon focus and specialization.

Evolved familiar to get extra natural weapons and reach.

Mauler's Endurance for 2 extra HP per level.

You can UMD well because you get it as a class skill and need the Charisma for evolved familiar.

I think that's as good as the get. The other option is valet or mauler familiar with a blood rager.


You'll want to consider grabbing a level of life shaman to get fast healing for your combat familiar.

Grand Lodge

zauriel56 wrote:
Unless I'm mistaken, improved familiars can't take the mauler archetype because they dont get the option to lose the ability to communicate with others of their kind

I also think this is the case.


Melkiador wrote:
You'll want to consider grabbing a level of life shaman to get fast healing for your combat familiar.

I believe it's one of the options from the spirits gift feat that it can choose.

zauriel56 wrote:
Unless I'm mistaken, improved familiars can't take the mauler archetype because they dont get the option to lose the ability to communicate with others of their kind

Crap, you are correct. Improved familiar says you can still get it if they are animals but the Nycar is not. That's unfortunate unless anyone can think of a way for it to gain the animal subtype?


Grandlounge wrote:
thelemonache wrote:

Heya! I'm working on building the ultimate combat familiar.

I know familiars are awful at combat and die easy but who cares this is just for fun. :)

What kinds of things am I missing that you can think of?

Eldritch Guardian with a Mauler Familiar Fox or Goat. You have a full BAB familiar that shares your combat feats (power attack for one).

Focus on natural weapons so you both can share weapon focus and specialization.

Evolved familiar to get extra natural weapons and reach.

Mauler's Endurance for 2 extra HP per level.

You can UMD well because you get it as a class skill and need the Charisma for evolved familiar.

I think that's as good as the get. The other option is valet or mauler familiar with a blood rager.

Hmmmm...tengu eldritch guardian fighter, with a fox familiar, with the evolved familiar for claws. They both have bite/claw/claw.

Through on coordinated charge, and they can ping pong together between enemies with psuedo pounces each round. That sounds good enough for damage.

Grand Lodge

lemeres wrote:

Hmmmm...tengu eldritch guardian fighter, with a fox familiar, with the evolved familiar for claws. They both have bite/claw/claw.

Through on coordinated charge, and they can ping pong together between enemies with psuedo pounces each round. That sounds good enough for damage.

Don't forget Outflank and Gang Up. They work really well.

The other version I like phalanx formation and shield companion.


There is fighter archtype called the eldritch guardian, first they get a familiar, second their lvls count as caster lvls for qualifying for improved familiar feat, and finally their familiar gets all the combat feats the fighter gets!


So now Im tinkering and was thinking of getting a raccoon for an eldritch guardian, 3rd level making it celestial or something, then 7th changing to a nycar. make ur eldritch guardian a half orc with the tusked race trait for a bite attack so u can do weapon focus, greater weapon focus, weapon specialization, and greater weapon specialization.

Silver Crusade

If you'd rather have druid animal buff spells than fighter feats on your familiar, check out some of the druid domains that grant a familiar instead of an animal companion. I think they're mostly in Ultimate Magic.

Or do both. Eldritch Guardian with levels of druid, as long as they both grant the same type of familiar, the levels should stack for familiar abilities. Then you can add fighter feats to your familiar AND cast Magic Fang.

Grand Lodge

Declindgrunt wrote:
There is fighter archtype called the eldritch guardian, first they get a familiar, second their lvls count as caster lvls for qualifying for improved familiar feat, and finally their familiar gets all the combat feats the fighter gets!

The improved familiar thing is still debated. I would advise people to ask their GM. The eldritch guardian says you have an effective wizard level for the purposes of the familiar ability. Which is not the same as having arcane caster levels for improved familiar feat.

I know this is a small distinction and I don't even like bringing it up. But for PFS or a strict GM, the rule is unclear.


I definitely think i would at least dip 2 of the fighter since it's very front loaded, but being able to cast things like mirror image and other "self only" buffs might make a strong argument to take a spell casting class also.

I like the idea of 2 eldritch guardian/then the rest either full bard or carnivalist. I still want to find a way to get the nycar to count as an animal so it can archetype into mauler. There used to be a feat "animal soul" that let you count as an animal for effects but i think it's been changed recently (on the pfsrd it's all crossed out and reworded now).


thelemonache wrote:
Melkiador wrote:
You'll want to consider grabbing a level of life shaman to get fast healing for your combat familiar.

I believe it's one of the options from the spirits gift feat that it can choose.

Spirits gift got nerfed in the errata.

Grand Lodge

thelemonache wrote:

I definitely think i would at least dip 2 of the fighter since it's very front loaded, but being able to cast things like mirror image and other "self only" buffs might make a strong argument to take a spell casting class also.

I like the idea of 2 eldritch guardian/then the rest either full bard or carnivalist. I still want to find a way to get the nycar to count as an animal so it can archetype into mauler. There used to be a feat "animal soul" that let you count as an animal for effects but i think it's been changed recently (on the pfsrd it's all crossed out and reworded now).

Maybe consider a full BAB caster paladin, or bloodrager. The familiar shares BAB so full BAB is a huge boost.


You want the spirit binder wizard with a paladin-soul familiar.

It gets full BAB, it gets bonus feats, the wizard can polymorph it into a dragon; what's there not to love?


I am currently building/playing a high level cleric that has gone into Divine disciple/ Mystic wanderer familiar build where I plan to get a Salt Mephit. The build is largely built around DMM persist but divine disciple allows you to give the familiar you get from Mystic Wanderer your first and second level spells if you want.
There are a few key spells to this build that enable your familiar to become a melee fighter. Salt mephit starts out with 17 str and power attack, which is not a bad place to start a melee character.
To keep the mephit safe I use Familiar pocket, shield other, DMM persisted channeled divine shield (10 dr for you and the familiar), which means the familiar is only ever taking half damage with a DR 10, if it can even be targeted while it moves in and out of the pocket.
For doing damage, the mephit shares all of my buffs and has my BAB. This means the mephit is benefitting from spells like DMM persisted Divine power, Divine Favor, Righteous might ETC. This puts the mephit in a good place to start swinging a 2h wep with a high attack and power attack combo ready to go.
To further improve the familiar in melee you can use aura spells like cloud of knives, Aura of cold, even something like dragon breath will go on you and the familiar.
The last benefit to be reaped from the familiar is its ability to use wands or scrolls through either UMD check or with the share spell ability from divine disciple (depending how your DM rules on familiars and wands/scrolls)


Sneerglaw wrote:

I am currently building/playing a high level cleric that has gone into Divine disciple/ Mystic wanderer familiar build where I plan to get a Salt Mephit. The build is largely built around DMM persist but divine disciple allows you to give the familiar you get from Mystic Wanderer your first and second level spells if you want.

There are a few key spells to this build that enable your familiar to become a melee fighter. Salt mephit starts out with 17 str and power attack, which is not a bad place to start a melee character.
To keep the mephit safe I use Familiar pocket, shield other, DMM persisted channeled divine shield (10 dr for you and the familiar), which means the familiar is only ever taking half damage with a DR 10, if it can even be targeted while it moves in and out of the pocket.
For doing damage, the mephit shares all of my buffs and has my BAB. This means the mephit is benefitting from spells like DMM persisted Divine power, Divine Favor, Righteous might ETC. This puts the mephit in a good place to start swinging a 2h wep with a high attack and power attack combo ready to go.
To further improve the familiar in melee you can use aura spells like cloud of knives, Aura of cold, even something like dragon breath will go on you and the familiar.
The last benefit to be reaped from the familiar is its ability to use wands or scrolls through either UMD check or with the share spell ability from divine disciple (depending how your DM rules on familiars and wands/scrolls)

What's "divine disciple"? I just tried looking that term up on Archives of Nethys and nothing came up.


Mark Hoover 330 wrote:
Sneerglaw wrote:

I am currently building/playing a high level cleric that has gone into Divine disciple/ Mystic wanderer familiar build where I plan to get a Salt Mephit. The build is largely built around DMM persist but divine disciple allows you to give the familiar you get from Mystic Wanderer your first and second level spells if you want.

There are a few key spells to this build that enable your familiar to become a melee fighter. Salt mephit starts out with 17 str and power attack, which is not a bad place to start a melee character.
To keep the mephit safe I use Familiar pocket, shield other, DMM persisted channeled divine shield (10 dr for you and the familiar), which means the familiar is only ever taking half damage with a DR 10, if it can even be targeted while it moves in and out of the pocket.
For doing damage, the mephit shares all of my buffs and has my BAB. This means the mephit is benefitting from spells like DMM persisted Divine power, Divine Favor, Righteous might ETC. This puts the mephit in a good place to start swinging a 2h wep with a high attack and power attack combo ready to go.
To further improve the familiar in melee you can use aura spells like cloud of knives, Aura of cold, even something like dragon breath will go on you and the familiar.
The last benefit to be reaped from the familiar is its ability to use wands or scrolls through either UMD check or with the share spell ability from divine disciple (depending how your DM rules on familiars and wands/scrolls)
What's "divine disciple"? I just tried looking that term up on Archives of Nethys and nothing came up.

Looks like they are using 3.5 stuff


A druid, ranger, hunter, fey-blooded sorcerer (others I'm not thinking of...) with an animal companion is likely to be a stronger combat option.

What's the motivation to create an effective combat familiar instead?


Northern Spotted Owl wrote:

A druid, ranger, hunter, fey-blooded sorcerer (others I'm not thinking of...) with an animal companion is likely to be a stronger combat option.

What's the motivation to create an effective combat familiar instead?

I can give you a corner case: I often create NPC classed foes for my games. Adepts get a free Familiar at L2. Being able to build around weaponizing said familiar using the Adept's limited spell choices would be interesting.


I do like the Carnivalist-Sylvan Trickster Rogue... especially gestalt with the Eldritch Guardian Fighter, but too few people play gestalt for that to be a likely option.


I think an Aasamar Humunculist Alchemist with the Wasp Familiar feat and Celestial Companion feat on a Mauler familiar is pretty tough. Take a dip in Spirit-Binder Wizard for full BAB and a feat and a dip in Beast-Bonded Witch for Verdant Familiar hex to get plant traits and the ability to transfer feats is good with this. Take the Tumor familiar and Mutagen discoveries so it can benefit from mutagens and extracts for good buffs (make sure to take the greater and grand mutagen discoveries as well). Then dump as many feats and discoveries into Evolved Familiar as you can to upgrade your familiar. You can take 2 pairs of arms and the claws evolution 3 times for 6 claw attacks for example. Pretty tough I think.


IluzryMage wrote:
Mark Hoover 330 wrote:
Sneerglaw wrote:

I am currently building/playing a high level cleric that has gone into Divine disciple/ Mystic wanderer familiar build where I plan to get a Salt Mephit. The build is largely built around DMM persist but divine disciple allows you to give the familiar you get from Mystic Wanderer your first and second level spells if you want.

There are a few key spells to this build that enable your familiar to become a melee fighter. Salt mephit starts out with 17 str and power attack, which is not a bad place to start a melee character.
To keep the mephit safe I use Familiar pocket, shield other, DMM persisted channeled divine shield (10 dr for you and the familiar), which means the familiar is only ever taking half damage with a DR 10, if it can even be targeted while it moves in and out of the pocket.
For doing damage, the mephit shares all of my buffs and has my BAB. This means the mephit is benefitting from spells like DMM persisted Divine power, Divine Favor, Righteous might ETC. This puts the mephit in a good place to start swinging a 2h wep with a high attack and power attack combo ready to go.
To further improve the familiar in melee you can use aura spells like cloud of knives, Aura of cold, even something like dragon breath will go on you and the familiar.
The last benefit to be reaped from the familiar is its ability to use wands or scrolls through either UMD check or with the share spell ability from divine disciple (depending how your DM rules on familiars and wands/scrolls)
What's "divine disciple"? I just tried looking that term up on Archives of Nethys and nothing came up.
Looks like they are using 3.5 stuff

O s+~*, yes, I am plalying dnd 3.5 I thought this was 3.5 not pathfinder my bad all TT

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