Building a Gestalt Magical Girl


Advice


Currently designing a character for a gestalt side-campaign that I'm playing in and decided that I want to make a Magical Girl themed character. (starting at lvl 1, 25pt. buy)

I'm planning to use the Magical Child archetype for the Vigilante as my first class - but I'm still trying to decide what to pick (& what archetypes to use) for my second class. While I'd prefer to pick something that synergies fairly well (has a use for CHA), I'm rather open in deciding where to go from there.

So I decided to ask the forums for opinions. What classes/archetypes do you think would combine with Magical Child best? As long as I can theme it towards being a magical girl, the sillier and zanier they are, the better.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

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Paladin? Ninja? Sorcerer? Oracle? Bard? Summoner? Swashbuckler? Bloodrager? Skald?


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Before Magical Child came around, the Chosen One Paladin was basically the magical girl archetype. I'd go with that. Double the magical girliness, extra use for your Cha.


The magical child's special thing is a very nice familiar. Which suggests that something which works with the familiar on the other side of the gestalt would be nice.

Eldritch scion magus lets you cast spells and attack, including buff spells or touch attack spells on the familiar. The celestial bloodline might be useful and appropriate.

Eldritch guardian fighter lets you share combat feats with the familiar and has full BAB.

Between the two I'd pick the magus personally.

Shadow Lodge

Paladin is a good idea, but the Chosen One doesn't work with Magical Child because it duplicates the familiar (not mechanically allowed, in addition to being not great thematically). Ditto on Eldritch Guardian Fighter - though if your GM lets you apply the bonuses from both classes to a single familiar then you might have something going.

Honestly, though, I don't think the familiar is going to be a meaningful combatant no matter what you do.

And I don't think the magus is worth it in gestalt when paired with a partial caster that has no combat abilities to speak of. You just won't have the firepower.

I'd suggest something focused and potent enough to do the heavy lifting for the character - paladin, bloodrager, oracle, sorcerer, or - my favourite - Feyspeaker Druid.

The Fairy Child: Nine levels of divine charisma-based casting with lots of fun flashy spells, to add to your summoner casting. All good saves, 6 skill points per level. Shapeshifting (2 levels later than usual, the only real downside to the druid archetype for this gestalt). And animals are your friends - you can have a second, larger animal buddy if you want.


Some things that might not be the most optimal mechanically but are very thematic:

Kineticist, maybe Overwhelming Soul for cha. Firing some sort of energy blasts is pretty common for magical girls.

Mindblade magus: summoning your own weapons is also rather appropriate. This ia rather MAD however, you need INT, CHA, DEX and CON, at least...

Ectoplasmist, Fractured Mind spiritualist: literally lashing out with your emotions, inherent weapons and armor and charisma based spellcasting.

Hope this helped!
Arcturus


You could go with some kind of Bard. Maybe with the Celebrity archetype, and have some of the bonuses only apply to one of your Vigilante identities. Duettist could be good if your GM lets you have an overlapping familiar feature. Or go with Arrowsong Minstrel, which would let you use both your Bard and your Vigilante/Summoner spell slots for Ranged Spellstrike and pick up some expanded spells in the process.


You have tons of options. It depends on your character focus, really. Do you want to be a melee combatant? Slap on a Cha-friendly full BAB class like Paladin, Cavalier, Bloodrager or Swashbuckler.

Even with your diminished number of Vigilante Talents you can still get a couple of them that are basically Feats-Plus-More. The one that lets you Vktle Strike on Oppertunity Attacks would work especially well with full BAB gestalting and a reach weapon. Being able to bring your own Enlarge Person ( among other great buffs) is a huge boon for this style.


Someone was running a PbP for that awhile back. XD I'd probably go Synthesist Summoner / Mesmerist. All the sparkles, your own magical girl outfit, and you can still hit like a truck.

It really depends on what kind of Magical Girl you want to be.

Grand Lodge

Magical Girl / Paladin: You get ungodly saves thanks to covering the Magical Girl's weak fortitude save and adding Charisma to your saves. You get heavy armor proficiency and a d10 hit die, making you all the better at combat yourself. Adding the mauler archetype to your familiar means you'll have an effective combat buddy.

Magical Girl / Bard: You've got 6th level casting in spades. Your hit die and saves won't be improved, but you'll be unnervingly good at skills, and you'll always have an option to buff your familiar for battle.

Magical Girl/Sorcerer: Why not be a 9th level caster with an uber-pet?

Magical Girl/Oracle: Be a 9th level caster with an uber-pet, but a lot of mysteries are arguably better than sorcerer bloodlines.


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I think Paladin is probably the best option in terms of powerful character. And Lawful Good is not a bad alignment for a magical girl, even though it means you can't play with a social alignment as much.

Synergist witch is maybe not remotely the best option, but certainly a funny one as you can combine with your OP pet in a magical song and dance. THIS ISN'T EVEN MY FINAL FORM!

...actually, I say not remotely the best. But it does end in the word pounce and full casting. Not the best full casting, but full casting with Pounce while you are, well, a Vigilante. Even with casting archetypes Vigilantes are plenty capable in a fight and with pounce and the transformation school you can go all Maleficent and dragon someone to death.

Personally, if you did do that I would go with Winter Witch too because it's fun and you really only give up like 1 hex and then 1 CL if you decide on the great PrC.


The Mortonator wrote:
...actually, I say not remotely the best. But it does end in the word pounce and full casting. Not the best full casting, but full casting with Pounce while you are, well, a Vigilante. Even with casting archetypes Vigilantes are plenty capable in a fight and with pounce and the transformation school you can go all Maleficent and dragon someone to death.

Aaaaand, I just noticed Transformation is on the Witch spell list. Shapeshift, Transformation, and Pounce at level 11 would make for one killer martial.


Thanks for the wonderful suggestions so far!

I didn't even know some of those CHA archetypes existed and many of the ideas here have sparked more ideas of my own (if only I could make a whole magical girl team instead of having to pick just one character).

To give a bit better idea of what I'm going for, I plan to give my familiar the Sage archetype (so it can serve as narrator and give explanation of monsters) and don't want to focus too much on trying to make it better (DR+auto Improved Familiar is already good and I want the magical girl to be center stage rather than the pet). Also planning to make the magical girl as a Tiefling simply so I can use a terrible pun, introducing herself as a Maou Shoujo (demon lord girl) instead of a Mahou Shoujo (magical girl). [Idea stolen from Kumo Desu ga, Nani ka?, also hope to make other silly phrases for her in the vein of Punie-chan’s “Lyrical Tokarev, kill them all!”] Since I’m currently watching through the Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha series (Currently in A’s), that’ll likely have a good degree of influence on how I want to build/RP her, though I’m still deciding on exactly what I want to focus on.

Mechanically, these are the options I’m most considering at the moment, though I’m still very open to hearing other ideas (and appreciate the others ideas I’ve seen here).

Magical Child/Paladin: Full BAB, d10 hit die, and +CHA to saves is probably the best option for stats, not to mention the healing. My biggest concerns are alignment restriction (limiting vigilante’s dual alignment) and wasting medium/heavy armor proficiency (as Magical Child spells are arcane and take spell failure above Light Armor). Especially since that without better armor options, being on the frontlines will probably be more dangerous.

Magical Child/Bard: Though I only have experience with support bards, trying to build a more offensive bard may be a fun task. Not to mention that bards are nearly always appreciated with their inspire courage team buff and the Thundercaller/Arcane Healer archetypes seem a bit interesting to me.

Magical Child/Feyspeaker Druid: I’ll admit, I’ve never actually played a druid before, so this might be a fun opportunity to do so. Nature Bond looks like a nice way to add a bit of elemental abilities (as GM would probably throw something at me for having both a familiar + animal companion) and having wildshape alongside the Vigilante’s Dual Identity (+things like Many Guises) seems like it could make them into a master of transformations. My biggest concerns here are my lack of familiarity with the Druid’s spell list + capabilities and how well the class is able to put their weight damage-wise prior to Wildshape.

Magical Child/Kineticist: And here’s a class that I originally just didn’t consider due to its complexity/learning curve. But after spending some time trying to make sure I understood it better, I like many of the ideas in it for this build. Throwing energy blasts seems like a good source of consistent damage, and taking Kinetic Blade+Weapon Finesse looks it’d be great as a switch hitter (not to mention could be themed as summoning your own magical weapons for theme). And even if the USummoner spell list gets the Fly spell at 7th lvl, the possibility for an Air Kineticist to get permanent Fly by 6th lvl is extremely tempting (after all, flying seems to be at least a fairly common magical girl ability).

Archetypes-wise, though Overwhelming Soul is what motivated me to look more into the Kineticist, am I wrong when I say it looks like a straight downgrade from the base kineticist? I don’t know exactly how detrimental being unable to willingly accept burn is to the class, but I’m thinking that going base Kineticist focusing on DEX/CON/CHA might be a better option. Also Elemental Annihilator looks kinda tempting from its switch hitting at lvl1 with Weapon Finesse and better spam blast ability with Flurry of Devastation+Rapid Shot, but losing permanent fly makes me hesitate + I’m unsure how it’d compare with base Kineticist in combat and being limited to physical blasts is a bit limiting (though going Water/Earth Kineticist for +AC/DR would be helpful if not getting fly).


Magical Girl/Mesmerist - You become the best liar. Ever. Combine with Enigma or Vexing Daredevil for increased shenanigans.

Magical Girl/Bloodrager - Do it. Celestial/Infernal crossblood.


I think I would still go with an animal companion and get good at ducking with a druid. Unless I was taking a domain focused archetype which sadly isn't compatable.

For Kin, you are right. Cha comes at too heavy a cost. You might want to focus on physical blasts so that your stats will work out better. Dex is more important to physical than energy.


Yeah. Overwhelming Soul is a straight downgrade for the most part. It's an occasional archetype to consider, but it ain't right for everybody. Take some of the money you're saving on weapons and get more stat enhancers maybe. On the bright side, gestalting with a spellcaster removes all the big downsides to Elemental Annihilator. You'll still have spell casting. Permanent flight or not. It's probably sufficient with just the fly spell.


In Italian translation Sailor Moon was the "paladin of Justice", so i think that paladin will be a nice choice :)


AnonMD wrote:
Magical Girl/Bloodrager - Do it. Celestial/Infernal crossblood.

Amusingly enough, I did consider the Spelleater archetype for the Bloodrager (eat own spells for healing), though I'm unsure if I like the idea of losing the ability to use Summoner spells when bloodraging.

The Mortonator wrote:
You might want to focus on physical blasts so that your stats will work out better. Dex is more important to physical than energy.

How so? Due to hitting normal AC instead of Touch AC like with energy? Or is there another ability of the Kineticist that I'm missing? (not unlikely, still trying to get the hang of the class)

---

Some other questions I'd like to ask now that I'm thinking about a few test builds before deciding.

I notice that the Tiefling alt racial trait Pass for Human mentions that they don't need to make a Disguise check to appear human, but what is the normal DC for trying to appear human without this trait? I'm planning to have the character try to appear human while in social form, hiding minor demonic features under her clothes (wings, tail) so that they can reveal themselves as a Tiefling only during their Magical Girl form. As such, I'm wondering how difficult the disguise check would be & if it's worth it taking social grace (social talent) in order to boost my Disguise check more (or if I should apply it to a different skill instead).

Additionally, considering that the animal guide gets to change forms at 3rd, 5th, and 7th levels and can then access all of the previous forms at 9th level, what would be a good progression of Improved Familiars to go through in order to have a wide variety of abilities available at 9th level? Keep in mind that I'm planning to take the Sage familiar archetype and that all Improved Familiar forms need to be within a step of the Magical Girl's alignment (which I haven't fully decided on yet, but means you couldn't bounce form an LE familiar to a CG familiar in the same build).


Charon Onozuka wrote:
The Mortonator wrote:
You might want to focus on physical blasts so that your stats will work out better. Dex is more important to physical than energy.

How so? Due to hitting normal AC instead of Touch AC like with energy? Or is there another ability of the Kineticist that I'm missing? (not unlikely, still trying to get the hang of the class)

You basically got it right there. Accuracy becomes more important. Also, Dex is good for Form Infusions which helps with elements like Earth.

Shadow Lodge

Charon Onozuka wrote:
Magical Child/Paladin: Full BAB, d10 hit die, and +CHA to saves is probably the best option for stats, not to mention the healing. My biggest concerns are alignment restriction (limiting vigilante’s dual alignment) and wasting medium/heavy armor proficiency (as Magical Child spells are arcane and take spell failure above Light Armor). Especially since that without better armor options, being on the frontlines will probably be more dangerous.

The armour is a bit of a pain. You could always go for a Dex build to have good AC in light armour. Div and Rahskasa tiefling heritage would be good for this as they give +Dex +Cha. Take Weapon Finesse at level 1, and either the Lethal Grace talent at 2 or Dervish Dance at 3; Fencing/Slashing Grace are too feat heavy for this build.

Charon Onozuka wrote:
Magical Child/Feyspeaker Druid: I’ll admit, I’ve never actually played a druid before, so this might be a fun opportunity to do so. Nature Bond looks like a nice way to add a bit of elemental abilities (as GM would probably throw something at me for having both a familiar + animal companion) and having wildshape alongside the Vigilante’s Dual Identity (+things like Many Guises) seems like it could make them into a master of transformations. My biggest concerns here are my lack of familiarity with the Druid’s spell list + capabilities and how well the class is able to put their weight damage-wise prior to Wildshape.

The druid in general does OK for damage prior to Wildshape. However this particular gestalt build should not be focused on damage, since the Feyspeaker is a casting archetype, not a combat archetype, and the Magical Child doesn't do much to help it out in that respect. A Feyspeaker Magical Child should be the one standing in the back, confusing her enemies by shrouding them in fog, covering the ground in grease or making the plants come to life; granting her allies the boons of flight or haste; calling up walls of thorns to block attackers or cut off retreat. Check out this guide, specifically the Wild Mystic and spells section, for an idea of how to play this kind of character.

If you are interested in being a bruiser then definitely go for Paladin or Bloodrager as your second class. As for bloodrager...

Charon Onozuka wrote:
Amusingly enough, I did consider the Spelleater archetype for the Bloodrager (eat own spells for healing), though I'm unsure if I like the idea of losing the ability to use Summoner spells when bloodraging.

Mad Magic is here to help.

Charon Onozuka wrote:
I notice that the Tiefling alt racial trait Pass for Human mentions that they don't need to make a Disguise check to appear human, but what is the normal DC for trying to appear human without this trait? I'm planning to have the character try to appear human while in social form, hiding minor demonic features under her clothes (wings, tail) so that they can reveal themselves as a Tiefling only during their Magical Girl form. As such, I'm wondering how difficult the disguise check would be & if it's worth it taking social grace (social talent) in order to boost my Disguise check more (or if I should apply it to a different skill instead).

There is no specific DC - it's opposed by an observer's Perception check. You'd get a -2 penalty for disguising yourself as another race. You'd probably fool most people with decent skill investment, but eventually someone would almost certainly identify you as a tiefling. However, your Seamless Disguise bonus might apply here - if your social identity is human, then appearing human is part of appearing to be in your social identity - so check with your GM. And even if your social identity is outed as a tiefling, that doesn't necessarily mean people will make the connection with your vigilante identity.

Charon Onozuka wrote:
Additionally, considering that the animal guide gets to change forms at 3rd, 5th, and 7th levels and can then access all of the previous forms at 9th level, what would be a good progression of Improved Familiars to go through in order to have a wide variety of abilities available at 9th level? Keep in mind that I'm planning to take the Sage familiar archetype and that all Improved Familiar forms need to be within a step of the Magical Girl's alignment (which I haven't fully decided on yet, but means you couldn't bounce form an LE familiar to a CG familiar in the same build).

At 3rd level you're probably looking at a Celestial animal (or whatever alignment type you want).

At 5th level I'd probably take a Brownie if you're within a step of TN. (Note: thematic for a feyspeaker!) If you're CG there's the Sprite; If you're LE or CE the Isitoq. I can't find a single 5th level familiar within a step of LG, which seems problematic for this archetype. I think the wording makes the 5th level upgrade optional.

At 7th level the Silvanshee is pretty boss for a LG or TN character. A CG or CN could also take the Lyrakien or Faerie Dragon, and a NG magical girl gets choice of all three! Imp probably the best choice for a LN, LE, or NE vigilante, and Quasit for the CE.


Charon Onozuka wrote:
Amusingly enough, I did consider the Spelleater archetype for the Bloodrager (eat own spells for healing), though I'm unsure if I like the idea of losing the ability to use Summoner spells when bloodraging.

That's just one feat away - Mad Magic.

Quote:
I notice that the Tiefling alt racial trait Pass for Human mentions that they don't need to make a Disguise check to appear human, but what is the normal DC for trying to appear human without this trait? I'm planning to have the character try to appear human while in social form, hiding minor demonic features under her clothes (wings, tail) so that they can reveal themselves as a Tiefling only during their Magical Girl form. As such, I'm wondering how difficult the disguise check would be & if it's worth it taking social grace (social talent) in order to boost my Disguise check more (or if I should apply it to a different skill instead).

There isn't a DC for disguise, you roll your disguise check and that's the DC for the perception check to beat it. Another race is -2 to the disguise check. If you don't have to make a check at all that's obviously better of course.

Quote:
Additionally, considering that the animal guide gets to change forms at 3rd, 5th, and 7th levels and can then access all of the previous forms at 9th level, what would be a good progression of Improved Familiars to go through in order to have a wide variety of abilities available at 9th level? Keep in mind that I'm planning to take the Sage familiar archetype and that all Improved Familiar forms need to be within a step of the Magical Girl's alignment (which I haven't fully decided on yet, but means you couldn't bounce form an LE familiar to a CG familiar in the same build).

A faerie dragon is IMO the best familiar you can get. Actual sorcerer casting and the dragon's ability to hold things in its claws mean that using wands and scrolls is easy for it, and it has good spells and SLAs and 60 (perfect) flight. A tidepool dragon is nearly as good and slightly better in a fight if it comes to melee. Faerie dragons want masters within one step of CG, tidepools those within one step of CN.

An elemental is neutral but can have a master up to one step away on each alignment axis, which means all of them. An earth elemental can move freely through the ground which is a neat trick.

For the 3rd level form you're getting a celestial or entropic standard familiar. You might get a small size familiar so it can fight, or an ioun wyrd for construct immunities and blindsight, or something poisonous for ambushes.

For the initial form you probably want one that can talk - a raven or thrush.


Weirdo wrote:
The druid in general does OK for damage prior to Wildshape. However this particular gestalt build should not be focused on damage, since the Feyspeaker is a casting archetype, not a combat archetype, and the Magical Child doesn't do much to help it out in that respect.

Completely disagree.

It is a casting archetype, but it is still a Vigilante. You have the appearance stuff, 3/4th BaB, and Vigilante Talents. Sure, it is casting focused, but with Gestalt magic the drawback to Feyspeaker is only Wild Shape being nerfed. It won't be a Gestalt level front liner, but it will be better than a normal Druid.

Probably around the level of a typical Martial/Caster Gestalt in terms of frontliners. You have Vigilante and Wild Shape after all.

Shadow Lodge

The Mortonator wrote:
It won't be a Gestalt level front liner

And that's the problem.

Yes, getting 3/4 BAB and vigilante abilities make up the combat difference between a Feyspeaker and a normal druid. But in a gestalt campaign you're not balancing against a single-classed character, you're balancing against other gestalt frontliners.

And no, it's not even going to be as strong in combat as a typical Martial//Caster. Pretty much any other Full BAB//Druid gestalt will be stronger. Fighter//Druid gets full BAB, tons of bonus feats, weapon training, and wild shape. Barbarian//Druid gets full BAB, RAGE, and Wild Shape. Slayer//Druid gets full BAB, studied target, sneak attack, and Wild Shape. Cavalier//Druid gets full BAB, challenge, and charging bonuses (with wild shape pounce!). Even some partial BAB//Druids will be stronger, like the Inquisitor//Druid (judgment, bane, solo tactics, wild shape) or Monk//Druid (Feral Combat Training=flurry with gigantic bite, Wis to AC). Keep in mind that since these combos don't need Feyspeaker for stat synergy, they get Wild Shape without the 2 level delay.

Heck, an Avenger Vigilante//Feyspeaker Druid would be a competent frontliner. But Magical Child loses half their vigilante talents in exchange for spellcasting. It also doesn't gain access to unique combat talents like the avenger's Unkillable, Signature Weapon, or Mad Rush.

Which is not to say that the Feyspeaker//Magical Child couldn't pick up a weapon. It's just not a great plan A for this combination, and there are way better ways to do combat with a Magical Child gestalt.


Come to think of it, I think that daring champion cavalier could be a nice martial side to a more combat-oriented MG gestalt.


Weirdo wrote:
The Mortonator wrote:
It won't be a Gestalt level front liner

And that's the problem.

Yes, getting 3/4 BAB and vigilante abilities make up the combat difference between a Feyspeaker and a normal druid. But in a gestalt campaign you're not balancing against a single-classed character, you're balancing against other gestalt frontliners.

By typical martial/caster I was not comparing it to a Druid. I was thinking like the classic Fighter/Wizard where your other half is a more caster focused caster. On the martial side, this is basically a Vigilante that gives specialization for buffing. They have the amazing defenses and offensives of illusion school, well above average talents, and a slightly nerfed Wild Shape.

Compared to a Magical Child/normal Druid it's not giving up much for a lot of returns. And Magical Child is just fine in combat anyways. Not the best, but it doesn't need to run.

Silver Crusade

Familiars are even more hopeless than usual in gestalt.

Be a Cha caster like Sorcerer or Oracle or if you want to be the magickest magical girl, be a Paladin and take Dragon Disciple on the Magical Girl side.

Shadow Lodge

The Mortonator wrote:
Weirdo wrote:
The Mortonator wrote:
It won't be a Gestalt level front liner

And that's the problem.

Yes, getting 3/4 BAB and vigilante abilities make up the combat difference between a Feyspeaker and a normal druid. But in a gestalt campaign you're not balancing against a single-classed character, you're balancing against other gestalt frontliners.

By typical martial/caster I was not comparing it to a Druid. I was thinking like the classic Fighter/Wizard where your other half is a more caster focused caster. On the martial side, this is basically a Vigilante that gives specialization for buffing. They have the amazing defenses and offensives of illusion school, well above average talents, and a slightly nerfed Wild Shape.

Fighter//Wizard may be "classic" but it's frankly a bad gestalt in terms of power. The wizard defenses are less fantastic when you realize that you're also unarmoured without a passive AC boost, few of your offensive abilities are synergistic, and your action economy is poor.

On the martial side, the Magical Child//Feyspeaker runs like a druid that has 2 levels delay in Wild Shape and gets 5 Vigilante Talents - which are nice but not super amazing, maybe worth 2 feats each - and a strong opening move in the appearance feature. And yes, you can grab Mirror Image as a level 3rd spell or just cast Blur or Displacement as a Magical Child for a little extra defense. But if you are comparing yourself to any half-decent actually martial gestalt in the party you will be disappointed by your damage output. Seriously, I'm playing an Unchained Monk//Alchemist (full BAB, flurry, Mutagen, Enlarge Person) and am still having trouble dealing as much damage as the party Cavalier//Oracle, not to mention the Barbarian//Ranger and Samurai//Rogue.

The offensive illusion spells - plus the buckets of offensive conjuration and transmutation spells from the combined lists - are a reason to play primarily as a caster, not as a martial.

Which is again not to say you have to give up on martial stuff entirely. This character has martial weapon proficiency and a 25 point buy and could easily get a post-racial 18 in Cha for 10 points plus a post-racial 17, 14, 13 in physical stats for a respectable secondary martial role, probably Dex-based with Lethal Grace or a reach build.

The Mortonator wrote:
Compared to a Magical Child/normal Druid it's not giving up much for a lot of returns.

Yes, that's exactly why I recommended it in the first place. But as a primary caster and at-best secondary martial damage dealer.


Weirdo wrote:
secondary martial damage dealer

At this point I think we are saying the exact same thing, only with a different measuring stick for terminology.

Shadow Lodge

I was beginning to suspect that, but I was thrown off by your statement that you "completely disagreed."

Because when I'm saying:
"These two archetypes are more casters than they are martial - if you want to be a frontliner go for Paladin instead of Feyspeaker."

Complete disagreement is more:
"Magical Child//Feyspeaker character absolutely could be as good a frontliner as the Magical Child//Paladin."

Than:
"Don't write off this character's martial potential just because casting is its biggest strength."

Charon Onozuka wrote:
Magical Child/Paladin: Full BAB, d10 hit die, and +CHA to saves is probably the best option for stats, not to mention the healing. My biggest concerns are alignment restriction (limiting vigilante’s dual alignment) and wasting medium/heavy armor proficiency (as Magical Child spells are arcane and take spell failure above Light Armor). Especially since that without better armor options, being on the frontlines will probably be more dangerous.

I just remembered this, but your medium armour proficiency isn't entirely wasted since it means that as soon as you can afford it you can wear a mithral breastplate without penalty (it counts as light armour for purposes of class limitations including spell failure).

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