Creating a Transmutation Wizard: Help Wanted.


Hey, Everyone:

I've posted a few times on the boards, but this is the first thread I've ever created (I felt I should reply to other posts, before creating my own thread, out of courtesy).

Anyway, I'm my group's DM, but as luck would have it, my buddy wants to give me a break so I can finally play (we've been playing together for nine years at this point). Now, this same buddy introduced me to Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood not too long ago. I've never been keen on anime, but I really enjoyed the show. Since it's my buddy's favorite show, I figured I'd honor him by trying to create an Edward Elric-type character. I was thinking of choosing a Transmutation Wizard (our group of five currently has no arcane caster), or perhaps choosing an actual Alchemist?

If you don't know the show, the character is essentially a Wizard-Fighter-Monk-type (you know how crazy those animes get haha) that can alter the physical world around him (i.e. Transmutation) to create weapons and walls and such. He has some martial capabilities that enhance his arcane abilities (I apologize to any fans for this gross oversimplification haha).

Here is what we're working with: we're using 20 point-buy; we're only using Pathfinder published material (so no 3PP); and we're only using Core Races (i.e. Dwarf, Elf, Gnome, Half-Elf, Halfling, Half-Orc, or Human; all the alternate racials and such are fair game, though).

I'm very fond of the idea (if I go the Transmutation Wizard-route) of going into the Eldritch Knight PrC to attain some of that arcane-martial balance that Edward displays in the show. That's just a kernel of an idea, though, so if anyone has some thoughts on possible builds that would be lovely!

Thanks, in advance, for all your time and help. I greatly appreciate it!


I think Alchemist might be a better fit. Eldritch Knight means multiclassing and it can be done well. A ranger or fight.transmuter is pretty cool. But a fully leveled alchemist gives you flexibility and might be the better bet.

Thanks for the reply, Mr. Pitt. I appreciate it :)

I guess I lean more towards a Transmuter/Fighter/Edlritch Knight for the simple reason of aesthetics. I would much rather enhance myself through my glowing spell-hand as opposed to chugging down a potion or a mutagen to receive my buffs.

When I do get these chances to play I often go for style over substance. But, of course, a character that is mechanically competent and effective is also desirable (and good for the party!).

EK is fun.

9th level casting plus 3/4 BAB, and Ultimate Buffs? Hell yes!

Transmutation School gives the nice ability score boost. You can use Mithral/Darkleeaf Armor and Arcane Armor Training for kicks, and grab Magical Knack to remain the same spell power.

I like Zolkuth's guide to EK's.

I'm not really familiar with the show, but especially if wearing light armor doesn't clash with the style you want, the magus base class might be exactly what you're looking for. Blended fighting and spellcasting, with pretty much an explicit glowing spell hand, and most of the common battlefield control and self-buff alteration spells.

Funny, my kiddo is a big anime fan and she and I were discussing how to build the Elric brothers recently.

How about an unchaned summoner with an inevitable eidolon? You have a magical companion that is a big metal dude, 6 level casting focusd on buffs and conjueration, and moderate fighting and hp. When you get the ability to grab some of your eidolons evolution points for yourself it would seem fitting if you took on some of the appearance, say a mechanical looking arm...

It is funny how you can make a closer FullMetal with a conjurer than a transmutationist.

A lot of FMA style spells are actually conjuration. Wall of Stone, that kind of thing. You'll just want to reflavor the mass as shifting rather than coming from thin air.

It's hard to do all the things alchemy does and still maintain some martial ability, but good suggestions have been made.

What mental stat is this character based off of?

Int: Creation School Wizard + Lore Warden Fighter + Eldritch Knight
Wis: Ephemeral Sorcerer + Unchained Sohei Monk + Eldritch Knight
Cha: Got nothing original

@Java Man: That is an interesting take I had not thought of. It's pretty clever. I need to read up on the Unchained Summoner, so I know what I'd be getting myself into. After one of my friends exploited a Synthesist Summoner at our table the Summoner is now subject to heavy sighing, extreme eye-rolling, and much resistance haha.

@Melkiador & Captain Morgan: Yeah, now that you both mention it, there are more of those FMA-style spells in conjuration as opposed to transmutation. *tsk tsk* I'll need to do some more research and more tweaking then. I do like the sound of a Conjurer EK :3

@Dastis: I would definitely like to try and stay Int-focused as I've never played a full caster based off intelligence before, so I feel pretty set on Wizard, but I could be swayed...

Anyway, here is a mock-up of the cheesiest wizard I could think of. I tried my hardest to make a Wizard posing as a Fighter lol. Her name is Lug Lug and her familiar, Blug-Rah the Ancient One, whispers the secrets of the universe into her hear (no one else can understand). She is quite possibly insane...

Lug Lug:
female half-orc Transmutation Wizard 1
NG Medium humanoid (human, orc)
Init +1; Senses darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +6

AC 11, touch 11, flat-footed 10 (+1 dex)
hp 12 (1d6 +2 con +3 familiar +1 favored class)
Fort +4, Ref +3, Will +2

Speed 30 ft.
Melee: greataxe +4 (1d12 +6)
Ranged: heavy crossbow +1 (1d10)

1st (2/day) – enlarge person, mage armor
0th (at will) – detect magic, guidance, read magic, resistance

Str 18, Dex 12, Con 14, Int 16, Wis 7, Cha 10
Base Atk +0; CMB +4; CMD 15
Feats: Arcane Strike, Scribe Scroll, Endurance
Skills: Climb +5, Knowledge (Arcana) +7, Knowledge (Dungeoneering) +7, Knowledge (Nature) +7, Spellcraft +7

Traits: Fate’s Favored (faith), Magical Knack (magic), Killer (combat)

Drawback: Burned

Languages: Common, Orc, Terran, Draconic, Abyssal

Class Abilities: physical enhancement (strength +1), arcane bond (familiar), scribe scroll

Racials: darkvision 60ft., intimidating, orc blood, sacred tattoos (replaces orc ferocity), weapon familiarity (falchion, greataxe)

Familiar: Blug-Rah the Ancient One (a tiny lil’ toad that croaks the mysteries of the universe into Lug Lug’s ear)

Again, I would just like to stress I went for cheese, and yes, I utilized Fate's Favored. My apologies :3


Concernig the unchanined summoner, it is toned down in several ways from the standard, opinions seem to vary, I find it better balanced, some find it nerfed too low. And the synthesist is often cited as easy to abuse or missuse, so if you can get past the stigma at your table, I think your group would find it fine.

We have a Transmuter in our group. He tought he could melee too but at around lvl 7 you just can t keep up with the dmg a fighter or barbarian will dish out in melee, so you re better served by buffing your frontline then yourself.
If you want to melee I would agree with the posters above, that you should try an alchemist or a proper Hybrid.

Grand Lodge

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This is my Transmuter/Fighter/Eldritch Knight I am playing in a PbP right now.

He's made it from Level 1 to his current state, and I've found I use spells MUCH more than I ever hit things with my bow or sword.

That may be a factor of having 2 SERIOUS melee fighters (Ranger & Rogue), but it's what I've experienced in gameplay.

That being said, he does have a crap ton of HP and can theoretically get his AC fairly high if it becomes necessary.

For an Elric style character, I would suggest Magus or even going straight Wizard, utilizing touch spells and manipulation magic to affect the batlefield.

Thanks again, everyone, for all your input so far :) @Tyophelis: Yeah, I hear ya and I agree. As I was staring long and hard at my character sheet I knew it would just fail miserably over time, especially after 1st level haha. The notion of an axe-swinging wizard is just too funny to me, though, and it has be worth a shot, right? :3 Oh, the whimsical musings of a crazed mind...

Also, after doing some surface research, I found that the Creation subschool of Conjuration fits the FMA bill quite a bit along with such Conjuration spells as Stone Shield and Expeditious Construction.

It was pointed out to me earlier that Metal mystery Oracle would be a good basis for Ed.

  • Lame curse would reduce speed, but Dance of the Blades cancels it out.
  • Metal Weapon for instant armaments (might want to focus on punching dagger/shortsword)
  • Uses effects spontaneously rather than setting them up ahead of time

Hey, @The Sideromancer: I am just going to post this for my own reference: Metal Mystery Oracle.

This looks pretty cool and seems to fit the bill too! I'll play around with it and see what I come up with. Thank you!

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