What good feats are there for a support caster?


Advice


Whenever I build a support caster, be it arcane or divine, I always end up with the same difficulty, going over the super long lists of feats and never finding anything really appealing.

Past some feats like toughness, iron will/great fortitude, to improve character survivability, the rare aid another character, and others like item creation that help the full party, I rarely find anything directly useful for casting my support spells (those that work reliably even without a high casting ability).

If I build a melee or ranged character, I find plenty of interesting combat feats. If I build a blaster, save or die or summoner caster, there is also some interesting things out there.

But what for those characters not build for combat that merely bring utility to the party and during combat they basically buff other characters, move them around, place walls, perhaps heal pernicious states, give utility (things like fly), etc... are there any good feat options for them?

Any source, preferably from the main RPG Paizo line, but also from Companion or Campaign Setting is ok.


Extend spell is the only thing that immediately springs to mind, to up the duration of some buffing spells.

I believe their is a bodyguard line of feats which might be useful for a Cleric/Oracle who sank some feats and gear into having crazy AC although I'm not sure of the details.


What about the meta magic feats? Extend or quicken spell could be quite useful. Not exciting, but useful.

Also, any of the feats to eschew components.

I also like spell mastery in case you're deprived of your spell book.


If you're placing walls then Fleeting Spell may be worthwhile. Improved Initiative is especially useful for buffing and battlefield control - you probably want to get those spells off before the parties' hammers or the enemy attacks.

Crafting feats are often appropriate and useful for this type of character if you're not playing in PFS.

There's feats which are specifically useful to characters of a particular class (e.g. channeling feats for a cleric). Did you have a particular class in mind?


Encouraging Spell from Magic Tactics Toolbox might be worth considering , especially if you get access to things like Good Hope.


Extended Spell metamagic feat?

Improved Initiative is a must so you can buff your party before they get their first attack.


There's a plethora of useful alchemical items, so perhaps Master Alchemist?


I will be following this with interest, as I often have same problem. I find most metamagic (apart from extend spell) good with spontanious casters, but struggle with prepared casters.
Improved Initiate is a good idea.


avr wrote:
There's feats which are specifically useful to characters of a particular class (e.g. channeling feats for a cleric). Did you have a particular class in mind?

I am thinking on prepared casters like a cleric full caster or wizard abjurer/diviner/transmuter. I have some bards but with those I often have a very clear idea of what I want to do with their feats.

Often I choose these builds when I play in less experienced or not optimized groups, so I can enjoy by letting others shine. Thus, anything that help others to have the light spot is great.

I am currently going into the challenge of building a mystic theurge for a group with 3 melee characters, 1 blaster sorcerer and 1 life oracle with battle control spells. I would chose a bard for this group but because I will join the group at level 8 I feel it is a unique opportunity to try this prestige class.

Independently of the build I am currently working on, I am interested on a general list of useful feats for supporter casters, as I have other characters with that role and also feel there are not that many feats for them.

I did not know about this Fleeting Spell and Encouraging Spell feats. They seem interesting, thanks!

Yep, if nothing better to chose from, Improved Initiative might help sometimes to place some buffs or battle control. As for Extend Spell, I usually prefer the affordable lesser rod of Extend metamagic.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Divine Interference is pretty good for divine support casters.

I've also had good luck with Improved Counterspell, but I might be unique.


An aside, if you are going wiz/ cleric mystic theurge, may I suggest the eccliestheurge archetype for your cleric side? Seems like an awfully good fit.

As for feats, i like toppling spell, on magic missile or spiritual weapon it gives a little more debuff, and can really help the melee crew.


With a mystic theurge you're not going to be going into channelling feats or arcane discoveries (you'd want more dice of channelling or need a higher wizard level, respectively), so the class-specific stuff I was thinking of is out.

Anyway, a couple of feats you may find useful: Brilliant Planner, which lets you have the most obscure alchemical or other technically non-magical items on hand; and False Focus which may be Razmiran in origin but doesn't actually specify that you need to follow the false god to use it. That feat should work pretty well to save you cash you'd otherwise spend casting Consecrate, Heart of the Metal, etc.


Have you considered Variant Multiclassing? If its available to you its a good alternative solution to your problem. There are quite some options to choose from (and options within those options!) so that I highly doubt you cannot find something that excites you, even if they're not always relevant to the role you intend to fulfill.

One of the things I really enjoy about casters is that they don't need feats. Sure, it makes them better but truly they're often so powerful already that I don't really feel they're necessary. Yet, they're there so... You can use them for fun stuff! I like feats that improve my familiar, for instance, or oddball stuff to reinforce my character's background. If you're willing and able to adopt that perspective to feats your problem suddenly becomes a luxury.

Your race might also provide options you wouldn't normally consider. I love Breadth of Experience, for example, on Elves, or the featchain that allows Sylphs flight or... etc.

Truly, none of these options directly do what you're asking for, I know that, but I feel they're worth considering anyway. I hope that can still prove helpful. If not, I'm sorry I've wasted your time. Carry on!


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Arcane Addict wrote:

Your race might also provide options you wouldn't normally consider. I love Breadth of Experience, for example, on Elves, or the featchain that allows Sylphs flight or... etc.

Yeah, there are some good racial feats out there if you're not optimizing for combat. Aasimar's feat chain gets you flight as well, and a Kitsune MT with all nine tails would be thematic - horribly unoptimized, but thematic. You might also look into boosting your defenses with style feats like Crane or Snake.


Pirate Rob wrote:
Encouraging Spell from Magic Tactics Toolbox might be worth considering , especially if you get access to things like Good Hope.

I was going to recommend this one, it's a +1 spell level to provide +1 morale bonus on any spells that provide one. So Encouraging Greater Heroism would give a +5 bonus. Heroism with a metamagic reducing trait would make sense.

MTT also has other metamagics that help, like one that doubles the effective spread of your Haste and similar buff effects, so that the party doesn't doesn't have to be as clustered up.

The Exchange

Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

divine interference

Shadow Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

In my experience, Extend Spell is normally useless for a prepared caster. I think OP is on the right track with a lesser rod.

Reach Spell is by far the most useful metamagic feat that I've used on support casters. The "Communal" line of spells make the +1 spell level worth it. Also, if you're a Cleric, being able to spontaneously convert prepared spells into Reach Cure X Wounds is bound to be useful sooner or later.

Other good feats for prepared support casters:
Planned Spontaneity is very good, but isn't available until 9th level.
Improved Initiative (as suggested above) is a good choice.
Reactive Healing isn't bad.
Bless Equipment and associated feats can be solid, but can require a sizable investment to really get going.
Spell Specialization and Greater can be quite useful, but will require some initial planning and focus for your character.
Quick Channel is a good way to make channel energy a decent option in combat.
Spell Perfection is a decent plan for any prepared caster, but you need three metamagic feats and 15th level to get there.

Silver Crusade

"Support/buffing caster" is a role that casters can take but it isn't really a full time role. You need to have something else in your repertoire.

Once you take Improved Initiative, Toughness, Encouraging Spell, Extend Spell, etc and have your primary role down, it's time to expand your abilities so that you can take on secondary roles. Since Support/buffing caster is so light on requirements, you might take feats that enable you to step into other roles as necessary/convenient.

Spell Focus Conjuration/Augment Summoning/Sacred Summons lets you get into the summoning game and synergizes nicely with buffing/support since it gives you more minions to support/buff.

Extra Channel/Quick Channel/Selective Channel/deity specific channel feats is another nice secondary role option and some deity specific channel feats (like Milani's Beacon of Hope) will let you use channeling to do your support/buffing as well.

Spell Penetration/Greater Spell Penetration and spell focus/greater spell focus can let you get into the debuffing/save or suck game if you feel like it.

If you have the stats for it, Power Attack will make melee combat a much more effective option and Point Blank Shot/Rapid Shot/Precise Shot/Deadly Aim can open up ranged combat as a good option.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Reach cleric (or even Wannabe Reach cleric) is a good secondary role for support. You can even flank and/or use Aid Another and/or even use some of those touch range domain abilities on allies in melee with your foes.

The Spell Focus Conjuration can be good if you're forced to use cures against undead in melee. Or if you get create pit somehow (I think the Caves sub-domain grants it.).

Grand Lodge

SmiloDan wrote:

Reach cleric (or even Wannabe Reach cleric) is a good secondary role for support. You can even flank and/or use Aid Another and/or even use some of those touch range domain abilities on allies in melee with your foes.

The Spell Focus Conjuration can be good if you're forced to use cures against undead in melee. Or if you get create pit somehow (I think the Caves sub-domain grants it.).

Well later some good Conjuration spells come about. Not to mention SF-Conjure is a pre-req for Augmented summoning which pairs nice with Sacred summoning.

2nd Level Cloud of Seasickness
5th Level has Plane Shift, Wall of Stone, Wall of Clockwork (Not as good as Blade barrier but something)
6th level has Chains of Light

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder First Edition / Advice / What good feats are there for a support caster? All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.