Your personal Top 3 classes


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

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TOP 3:

3. Investigator: There's so much about this class to love. You can build a combat-heavy character and still have 10+skills per level. With Inspiration & discoveries you'll be great without even trying! (I do reccomend a 1 level Martial dip for this class to help with those early levels)

2. Magus: I love me some Gish, and Magus-Gish is Best-Gish. Even without Shocking Grasp or some kind of dex-damage feat/item/whatever you can build a really solid class that has so many options. Archetypes open up even more options, from changing your casting stat to adding hexes, there's always something new to try with this class!

1. Paladin: I love playing high CHA characters. Paladin is a full BAB class with good Fort & Will saves. High Cha means you can be useful out of combat. So far we're only at level 1.
Detect Evil, Divine Grace, Lay on Hands, Mercies, Divine bond (Weapon & Mount both great & really different styles) ... And Aruas: Immunity to everything & makes you a passive buff for your party. Seriously they're all such good features.
And then there's Smite Evil - Do I even need to say?
The only things I didn't mention are Channel Energy and Holy Champion. Honestly these 2 aren't bad, they just don't seem like they're in the same league as the other features.
Oh, and spell-casting ... you're a caster.
Archetypes help you customise your character, although I do find it hard to trade out some of those class features: - I find it easier to trade out Spell-casting than Divine Grace ... When you'd rather trade out magic, you know you have a strong class.
If I have one complaint about this class it's that it tends to be feat starved. With Fey Foundling, Unsanctioned Knowledge, Greater / Ultimate Mercies & Improved Critical (to stack with Bless Weapon) all being so good you're looking at an otherwise-feat-starved character by the time you hit level 12 or so.

Honourable Mentions: (Classes I haven't played but think I would love)

3. Ranger: I've always wanted to play a Ranger, but I always get too hung up on Favoured Enemy - What if I choose the wrong one!?!
It's a full BAB class with 2 good saves, 6+INT skills/level, bonus feats (that skip the prerequisites), spell-casting and some really good flavour. You can also get a pet if you want.
Enough options that you could play nothing but rangers and they'd never be the same. On my to do list.

2. Alchemist: My Investigator was basically my first Alchemist character. The character concept that I came up with didn't really fit the idea of Bomb-Throwing, so I wanted to trade that away. Otherwise I think this is an extremely powerful, versatile & fun looking class that I doubt I'll ever get bored of. Possibly the best designed class I've seen.

1. Bard: Reading through the bard's class features it's a bit hard to quantify. With so mch focused on helping your party it can be difficult to tell just how effective you'll be. That and the fact that it has so many archetypes I don't even know where to start looking. It's a bit daunting.
Honestly though, this class seems like it combines some of my favourite parts of Investigator, Magus & Paladin. I have the feeling that once I've played a Bard I might never play anything else =P


My favourites are:

1. Cleric. I like the way this class fits neatly into the Inner Sea setting. I also like that you don't have to optimise this class very much to be effective. I also like that you can design a character that is not focused on combat that is still be fun to play. I also like them as a GM because they make for a good BBEG.

2. Ranger. Favourite martial character by a huge margin. Can fill in as the back up for a number of different roles. My current character is the primary party archer and back up scout, tank and skill monkey. I have tried the Fighter, Barbarian and Paladin and found them to be boring by comparison.

3. Druid. I like the concept even though I have never played one. I have built a few over the years and I have one ready to go for the next campaign.

Honourable mention:

4. Rogue. Conceptually one of my favourites but mechanically weak, otherwise it would be ahead of the Druid. (although I haven't tried the unchained version). I have designed my own version which is a lot more powerful.

The Exchange

1. Fighter - dwarven kilt wearing Scottish accent gruff and violent. All the tropes. All the fun.

2. Inquisitor - just the concept of an assassin of the church really. Van Helsing and all the vampire hunter movies ever made etc. Great class to build a concept around it.

3. Witch. Again it just oozes character for me. I played an evil witch in a campaign who healed folks but it felt aweful as she did it. Just soooooo much fun and mechanically sound too.

Those are chosen purely on my experience playing them and sheer amount of fun had doing so.


1. Rogue
2. Rogue
3. Rogue

But being completely serious...

1. Rogue
2. Cleric (specifically my non healing cleric of luck)
3. Is a tie between cavalier (my second most played class) and alchemist (because bombs rule)

I play too much rogue...


1) wizards and sorcerers because I so love arcane casters
2) Alchemists, because they are just ultra cool
3) Oracles, because the thematic powers overcome the drastically reduced spell list.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

1. Arcanist
2. Investigator
3. Warpriest

Honorable mentions: Druid, Oracle, Bloodrager

Silver Crusade

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1) Paladin
Mostly I love the amazing saves, especially on an archer. The focus on charisma is nice if for nothing else than picking up diplomacy. Like MrCharisma, I feel like their spellcasting is one of their weakest features, and with things like Paladin's Sacrifice and Shield Other it's still pretty good. I've had no RP issues with them as I typically like to play LG types anyway, and I haven't had a GM be a jerk about slight variances. I like to play big hero, and paladin fits the bill perfectly.

2) Wizard
I love the versatility. I love the feeling that you can always do better, and not just with better luck, but through your own system mastery. I love knowing that I can have a solution to anything. The only downside is I do occasionally just want to zone out and deal some damage.

3) It's hard to pick here. Probably Bard.
Also Inquisitor, Ranger, and Cleric.
I love the strong team-player aspects of all of these, but especially the bard. Bard, inquisitor, and ranger are sort of do-it-all classes that can use weapons, skills, and magic all fairly well. Cleric makes the cut for similar reasons as wizard made my #2, but in general I feel like they're a bit bland as a class since they basically have no features but spells and channel energy. Wizard at least gets a few bonus feats in there and multiple skills from high intelligence.

As a point of disclosure, I haven't played much of the ACG classes, though even of the one's I've played and having looked at the rest, none stand out. I've also not really looked over OA at all except for kineticist, which didn't turn out to be quite the class I'd hoped it would be. I feel it lacks depth, like it's too focused and missing oddball utility abilities. The class ability list looks long, but it's really all just "blast better and different".


Oh, I listed wizards and sorcerers but I forgot arcanists.


Pathfinder
1. Magus
2. Unchained Monk
3. Weapon Master Fighter

Outside of Pathfinder

3.5 D&D

1. Warblade
2. Duskblade
3. Swordsage

Pathfinder and 3.5 D&D

1. Magus
2. Warblade
3. Swordsage

I always go the multi-class build.


1) Cleric - There's just so many possibilities you can do with a straight up cleric, though my favorite type is a robe caster who prefers using negative channels as weapons.

2) Oracles - I can do everything from be the meat shield to the voice of the party.

3) Paladin - Yup, I'm not lawful stupid. Enjoy the irony.


At the moment.

1. Druid - Always good and flexible.

2. Warpriest - Swift action buffs followed by standard action summons. Good Profs. Lots of build flexibility. Overall, I like it more than the magus.

3. Medium - Martial that doesn't have to be a martial during downtime. Various working builds. Lots of possibilities. A far more valid class than it seems at first.


The surprise for me is the popularity of the cleric. I assumed the wizard would be the most popular by far but that doesn't seem to be the case.


Most powerful and most popular are two different things. Always being the best is boring to many. There's a reason stories favor the underdog as the protagonist.

1. Rogue (and it's many offshoots particularly Slayer)
2. Witch
3. Mesmerist


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

1) Rogue. (I prefer the Unchained version, but the standard version remains #1 on my list.)

2) Cleric.

3) Fighter. The flexibility of options makes the fighter my favotite martial class.

And to round out my top five...

4) Wizard

5) Witch


Actually the most favored class I'm seeing is Bard. I have never cared for it even after reading how people use it. I read from those same people how they hate other classes. I find it annoying in some cases because the classes they hate are actually better suited for what they are doing with the Bard.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

1. Oracle (a class with both (i) a ton of flavor, and (ii) interesting mechanics which match the flavor well)

2. Ninja (ditto)

3. Mesmerist (ditto)

(Honorable mentions: Inquisitor, Kineticist)


1. Oracle
2. Kineticist
3. Synthesist

I love playing one-themed focused characters with a mix of martial and spellcasting abilities!

The Exchange

45ur4 wrote:

1. Oracle

2. Kineticist
3. Synthesist

I love playing one-themed focused characters with a mix of martial and spellcasting abilities!

I second the fact just stated!


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Following Lord Gadigan, I thought it would be interesting to tally the results again. I've followed Lord Gadigan's methodology, with one important difference: instead of giving 3 points to first place, 2 points to second place, etc, I've just counted the number of times each class appears in a top three list. (This is the number in parentheses to the right.)

1. Bard (28)
2. Oracle (24)
3(t). Cleric (23)
3(t). Inquisitor (23)
5. Alchemist (21)
6. Paladin / Antipaladin (17)
7. Magus (16)
8. Rogue / Unchained Rogue / Ninja (15)
9(t). Investigator (14)
9(t). Sorcerer (14)
11(t). Barbarian / Unchained Barbarian (13)
11(t). Druid (13)
11(t). Fighter (13)
11(t). Kineticist (13)
11(t). Wizard (13)
16. Witch (12)
17(t). Monk / Unchained Monk (11)
17(t). Ranger (11)
17(t). Summoner / Unchained Summoner (11)
20. Occultist (10)
21(t). Mesmerist (7)
21(t). Vigilante (7)
21(t). Warpriest (7)
24(t). Hunter (6)
24(t). Slayer (6)
26. Arcanist (5)
27(t). Gunslinger (4)
27(t). Medium (4)
27(t). Shaman (4)
30(t). Bloodrager (3)
30(t). Brawler (3)
30(t). Cavalier / Samurai (3)
30(t). Skald (3)
34(t). Psychic (2)
34(t). Spiritualist (2)
36. Swashbuckler (1)

  • Highest ranked class from CRB: Bard (Runner up: Cleric)
  • Highest ranked class from APG: Oracle (Runner up: Inquisitor)
  • Highest ranked class from ACG: Investigator (Runner up: Warpriest)
  • Highest ranked class from OA: Kineticist (Runner up: Occultist)


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Wow. Cleric is doing really well. Personally, I find them one of the most boring classes I've ever played.


1. Druid.

My first pathfinder druid was a serpent shaman using snake style and the trickery domain to great effect.

2. Magus.

I love classes that give you another way to utilize touch spells. So much burst damage.

3. Mesmerist.

One of my new favorites. This class is a master of action economy and a pro at dismantling single targets. I could go into great detail about the kind of shenanigans this class is capable of. As a matter of fact... I WILL be doing just that when I release my Mesmerist guide in another month or so!


1 person marked this as a favorite.

1. Ranger. My sentimental, traditional favorite over many years. Don't even need spells to enjoy playing one.
2. Fighter. My 'go to' class. Love the tactical element, going toe to toe with the opponent...and once in a while it just boils down to holding your ground with everything you've got or the party dies. (Cavalier gets a nod here as well).
3. Tie between Bard & Inquisitor. In real life having a love of playing music and being able have that in a character is fun with a bard. As for Inquisitor--Keeper of the Faith, Protector of the Faithful (from those who would abuse the faith) I've enjoyed this class so far.
Honorable mention: Rogue. A rogue is what you make of it.

My wife's favorites are:
1. Alchemist. Meet Fidjit. A very small, live wire, pink, female gnome bartender with purple hair and a love of all things that go boom. Always check your drink before consuming and don't plan on stealth tactics lasting very long.
2. Rogue.
3. Bard.
Honorable mention: Paladin.

The Exchange

Tsukiyo wrote:
Wow. Cleric is doing really well. Personally, I find them one of the most boring classes I've ever played.

Yeah, I'm playing a lvl 3 Cleric with a +1 longsword and a STR of 9.

Not my best character.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Tsukiyo wrote:
Wow. Cleric is doing really well. Personally, I find them one of the most boring classes I've ever played.

My favorite clerics I've played in PF...

Valeria Baladin: cleric (hidden priest) of Desna from Cheliax, who pretended to be a bard.

Aescher Scyldson: (homebrew campaign world): berserker cleric of Thor. ('Berserker' was purely a roleplaying choice...) Had the Destruction and Weather domains, used a warhammer in combat. Highest stat was Strength!

Sovereign Court

My PFS clerics:

Dhampir Cleric of Pharasma: Specialized Undead slayer with some very unique capabilities

Half-elf Cleric of Erastil: originally planned as Ranger multiclass; now the character is a stubborn proof of concept that you CAN do archery as a straight Cleric.

Kitsune multiclass Cleric of Calistria/Unchained Rogue: a Kistune that's NOT a sorcerer! Tons of fun, too.

Human Cleric of Urgathoa: Poses as "just a retired farmer trying his hand at adventuring". Channel smite with a scythe ftw!

I'm looking forward to starting an Asmodean Advocate.


Clerics the class offer so much RP material more then most. From the base book the newer deities don't offer much but every supplement regarding Gods has made up for it. Even Clerics from the same temple depending on Archtypes can differ. Then add race, traits, feats and equipment further separate clerics.
Theliah I'm curious as to why exactly you find them so boring. Combat wise it's easy to see 9 Str and a weapon a cleric normally isn't proficient with. Save Martial classes most characters suck at low level. It isn't until mid to high level most classes start to become really cool and powerful.


Poor swashbucklers, they only got one vote:(


Rogue

Because I enjoy the challenge

(But I also always ask for 3pp stuff to be allowed)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Dragon78 wrote:
Poor swashbucklers, they only got one vote:(

No spellcasting (Amusingly, of non-spellcasters, Rogues and their ilk seem to get the most love in this unscientific poll!), highly situational, and not all that great at reflecting the flavor they're meant to embody....


I really like swashbucklers, they just aren't on the top of my list.

The Exchange

1. Druid

2. Shaman

3. Bard


Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscriber

I really don't like swashbuckler, because they always seem to be better done in another way...

want dex to damage? 3 levels of uRogue and rest of fighter.

btw, I really like smushing Urogue and Fighter together, would recommend.


#3 Fighter: I enjoy the challenge.

#2 Wizard: A class near and dear to my heart. I love playing wizards and all the unexpected things they can do to a game.

#1 Magus: A fighter with spells or a wizard with a sword? Does not matter, it combines the two classes I enjoy the most into a seamless whole.


3) Vigilante. Its the martial build a class these days, overtaking even fighter in my mind. Dual identity and spywork is also something I enjoy greatly.

2) Medium. Its the class that can be any role, and change each day. For those moments when I want a little bit of anything.

1) Oracle. My favorite thing is to create 'Godlings'; Choose 4-5 domains and base all your spell choices on these. Its a fun, thematic game for me. Its also very 'build a class' with all of the mysteries, curses and spell choices. It can even get Martial flexibility if your feeling it.

Liberty's Edge

Tyinyk wrote:
I really like swashbucklers, they just aren't on the top of my list.

My problem with them is that they make better dips than a class you would actually play. I can see a lot of compelling reasons for a 1 lvl dip in mouser or a 1 lvl dip in inspired blade. I see less reasons to continue taking levels in swashbuckler after the dip...

The Exchange

Derek Dalton wrote:

Clerics the class offer so much RP material more then most. From the base book the newer deities don't offer much but every supplement regarding Gods has made up for it. Even Clerics from the same temple depending on Archtypes can differ. Then add race, traits, feats and equipment further separate clerics.

Theliah I'm curious as to why exactly you find them so boring. Combat wise it's easy to see 9 Str and a weapon a cleric normally isn't proficient with. Save Martial classes most characters suck at low level. It isn't until mid to high level most classes start to become really cool and powerful.

Yeah, but my character is an Elf, we have 3 spellcasters in our party, and only 2 non-spellcasters: a Dwarven Fighter and a Halfling Rogue. As a semi-combatant, I'm expected to help the Fighter, who's taking the brunt of the damage. All 3 spellcasters are Elves (unintentionally): an Elven Wizard, an Elven Cleric (me), and an Elven Sorcerer.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Pawns Subscriber

1. Bard
2. Unchained Rogue
3. Wizard


Porridge wrote:

Following Lord Gadigan, I thought it would be interesting to tally the results again. I've followed Lord Gadigan's methodology, with one important difference: instead of giving 3 points to first place, 2 points to second place, etc, I've just counted the number of times each class appears in a top three list. (This is the number in parentheses to the right.)

{. . . {List omitted} . . .}

Top non-surprises in this list: The customizability of Oracle would have pushed it to the top, except that the sheer number of Bard archetypes and Masterpieces vault Bard into the top place.

Sheer power and a modicum of customizability gets Cleric into a tie for 3rd with Inquisitor, which gets points for versatility combined with pretty good power.

Surprises in this list:

Kineticist is one of the newest classes except for Vigilante, and comes in tied with Wizard!

Somewhat less surprising: Sorcerer comes in slightly above Wizard, but at least Pathfinder has had this for an equally long time, and gets points for being highly customizable.

Related surprise: Arcanist comes in WAY below Wizard and Sorcerer. I would have thought the customizability.

Also surprising: For all the hate on the boards, Rogue/Ninja comes in above ALL of the arcane casters except Bard and Magus. And while most of the hate is directed against Rogue, I haven't seen as many Ninjas as Rogues in PbPs that I have been following, so this stays a surprise.

The low positions that Gunslinger and Cavalier/Samurai have (below Arcanist, despite having been around a lot longer) suggest that we need Unchained versions of these.

The last place position of Swashbuckler (below all the Occult classes, despite having been around longer) suggests that we need an Unchained version of this.


Favorites:
1. Bard
2. Magus
3. Hunter

Runner-ups:
Warpriest
Inquisitor
Alchemist
Unchained Summoner
Investigator
Skald

Notice a pattern? What can I say, I really like the design of the 1/2 casters. I find them more balanced compared to themselves than all the rest.

Liberty's Edge

UnArcaneElection wrote:
Also surprising: For all the hate on the boards, Rogue/Ninja comes in above ALL of the arcane casters except Bard and Magus. And while most of the hate is directed against Rogue, I haven't seen as many Ninjas as Rogues in PbPs that I have been following, so this stays a surprise.

There's actually almost no hate for the Rogue. I, for example, love the Rogue thematically with all my heart. What there is, is a lot of commentary on the Rogue being mechanically sub-par...which is mostly true, though Unchained Rogue helps somewhat, and several Archetypes (including Ninja) help a bit as well.

However, this list isn't 'What are the most powerful classes?' it's 'What are your favorite classes?' and enjoying theme and role in the party have as much to do with that as raw mechanical power.

Or to put it another way: I'm not surprised by how well Rogue is doing at all. A lot of people value theme above mechanics, and Rogue has a wonderful theme.


^I should have said hate for Rogue mechanics (even after Unchained).

But it's good to see that the Rogue mechanics aren't actually bad enough to stop most people from playing Rogues.

The Exchange

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Seeing Fighters and Wizards in the list with the same number of top 3 votes gladdens my heart.


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Dragon78 wrote:
Poor swashbucklers, they only got one vote:(

They suffer the same issues of their parent class, the Gunslinger. Lack of variety besides just full attacking things. Many would consider them under powered thanks to reliance on precision damage and an awkward choke point in their action economy in the Swift action department

Amusingly enough, when they -do- work out, their constant parrying can frustrate GMs. Some still think of it as an overlowered class to this day.

In the spirit of the thread, I'm going to chip in with why I wouldn't go with this class to satisfy my "agile fighter" itch.

My Top 3 Replacements for the Swashbuckler:

3) Brawler. Get yourself some Fencing Grace. From here, Martial Versatility solves the problem of permenant feat choices (Like Improved maneuver feats) being situational. What better way to play up a competent fencer than being ready for anything?

2) Vigilante. A much less clunky (if lower damage) Dex to Damage alternative baked into a bonus feat. Talents that are pretty dang fun. A better range of saves. Mechanics that let to play at being Zorro. And if you're all about that spellcasting life, archetypes have you covered.

1) Unchained Barbarian. I am one hundred percent serious. New Rage works with finesse weapons, and Guarded Stance plays up the duelist angle. But how does the rage work into it? Simply imagine a talented fencer with near superhuman reflexes (Fast Movement, Uncanny Dodge) that couldn't quite cut it at the achademy due to their anger issues. It's all fancy steps and witty remarks until first blood is drawn: then it's all about forceful strikes and spitting heinous (if still articulate) insults.


Wrath wrote:
Seeing Fighters and Wizards in the list with the same number of top 3 votes gladdens my heart.

Oh yeah, you're right -- how did I miss that? Although this one is only semi-surprising, since the Weapon Master's Handbook and Armor Master's Handbook have made Fighters become actually not too shabby (although these supplements haven't been out for very long).


1) Kineticist
2) Occultist
3) Vigilante

I'm a 27 year veteran of various forms of D&D, I've played every edition except 5th and every spinoff I've gotten my hands on. I prefer classes I haven't played dozens of times before. I'll play a cleric if I need to (though I'd rather be an Oracle) but I hope to never need to play another Wizard.


Tyler Burns 127 wrote:

I have only played a few of the classes so I will rate the top 3 I have played.

3: Gunslinger(Musket Master Archetype) - I almost never miss with this character, the damage output is great, makes me feel like a barbarian with a gun.

2: Archer Bard - Never run out of things to do, lots of skills, a great spell list, buffs and a combat option.

1: Unchained Monk - Not sure why I like this class so much but it is one of my favorites to role play.

I wanna update this I have been playing an Oracle lately which has been great and versatile. I would rank it higher than the gunslinger which has been very lackluster in the last few games I have played.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

1. Investigator, skills, alchemy, role playing fun. Love it.
2. Shaman, a very flexible caster.
3. Cavalier, so many cool order - archetype combos.
4. Fighter, the iron caster build in particular.


Rosc wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:
Poor swashbucklers, they only got one vote:(
They suffer the same issues of their parent class, the Gunslinger. Lack of variety besides just full attacking things. Many would consider them under powered thanks to reliance on precision damage and an awkward choke point in their action economy in the Swift action department

Eh, fighters also tend to full attack most of the time, but a lot of people like them, at least in theory.

I actually prefer daring champions as swashbuckler replacements. The order and challenge work fairly well for honorable (and prideful) master fencers. A pity that you only get your precise strike at level 4.


The Shaman wrote:

Eh, fighters also tend to full attack most of the time, but a lot of people like them, at least in theory.

I actually prefer daring champions as swashbuckler replacements. The order and challenge work fairly well for honorable (and prideful) master fencers. A pity that you only get your precise strike at level 4.

Ohh, Daring Champion! How could I forget the OG Swashbuckler+ option? Yeah, those guys are pretty good. Considering their Dex to Damage options, I could see a strong arguement for the Unchained Rogue as well.

Perhaps my top 3 should be more of a top 5, or top 10...


So many choices, but...

1. Alchemist. Buff everyone with extracts, blast everything with bombs and if that's not enough, bash heads with a mutagen. Stealth Suite (Slippery trait, Skill Focus(Stealth), Dampen Presence and Hellcat Stealth feats) and familiar for shenanigans, Use Magic Device for the spells he can't cast and we have a winner.

2. Oracle. Specifically of the Battle variety. Nine levels of divine magic on a solid martial chassis.

3. Vitalist (from Dreamscarred Press' Psionics), for the telepathy/healing/buffing network. This class makes the list for that alone. Its neat.

Honorable mentions for Shifter and Symbiat(Hekatonkheires archetype) from Spheres of Power.

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