Okay, here's the scoop: My friends and I are doing the Emerald Spires superdungeon. We are working our way through the Splinter Den right now. The boy who was originally GM was found to hold too much creative liberty for our liking. His older brother is taking over GM for him.
Our party consists of: A monk. A ranger (This player left a few days ago. I will be playing as him now). An alchemist (The brother's character - either the ex-GM takes him over (unlikely), he gets reincarnated as a ninja through divine intervention, or the kid playing the monk gets him as well). And me, a Paladin (Originally played by the new GM before I learned about Pathfinder). We are level 3 right now.
So, here are our plans:
The monk. Undecided. We want tips on how to make him fun (But not on this post!)
The ranger. Arcane Archer For The Win!
The alchemist. Depends on how we do the transition.
The paladin. Finally! We arrived close to the rules question! So, a few days ago I had this great idea that I'd take a level or two (or more) in cleric, for the channel energy, because my lay on hands was not cutting it. My team fervently agreed. They said that I should aim for a holy vindicator, which I'm all for. But then I saw that Paladins get Channel Positive Energy at 4th level. Does that fulfill the Channel Energy Class Feature Requirement for Holy Vindicators?
(If you want to comment on the questions not about rules, I will be posting a similar thing under generald discussion shortly).
Yes. The Paladin's channel ability directly references the Cleric ability, and I don't think anyone questions that it counts for prerequisites.
Vindicator has some pretty cool features, but do consider that you're losing almost all Paladin progression - including continued improvement of Smite.
Honestly, if I was going to trade-off Paladin levels to multiclass, it would be into a level or two of something like Scaled Fist Monk (charisma based and flurries a weapon!) or Snakebite Striker Brawler (flurries a weapon in armor, with shield!) or Bloodrager (Raging Paladin!). I would be most likely to take levels of Holy Vindicator as a Cleric looking for more BAB and new combat powers, rather than as a Paladin whose best features depend on his Paladin level. But that's just my opinion.
depending on your charisma, you might want to look at the Reward of Life feat, adds your charisma bonus to lay on hands healing. if your DM will let you do a slight rebuild on your character, you might also like the Fey Foundling feat, as it drastically increases lay on hands healing as you level, combining these two feats makes it really potent. If rebuild is on the table, you could also look at the Oath of Charity for paladins, increases healing to others by 50% with lay on hands. Also, the Tiefling's favored class bonus adds +1 point of healing per level to lay on hands when you heal yourself.
I also tend to agree that taking a prestige class in pathfinder is usually not the best path unless you have some very specific weird build in mind, strangely enough they tend to be less powerful and have less useful features than base classes. If you havent, you might want to take a look at all the available paladin archetypes, lots of customization options exist for your base class.
I'll just throw this out there 'cuz it's so uniquely badass for a Paladin...
Throw off your armor and wear a robe with charisma-bonus AC plus free Dodge... and then use Flurry of Blows with a weapon and maybe a combat style. A Paladin can naturally use a 9-ring broadsword or sansetsukon, but you can also use the feat Crusader's Flurry to flurry with your deity's weapon. Depending on the deity, things like scythe flurry or bastard sword flurry are pretty awesome style.
So I already have an MK Bastard Sword... and you're telling me I can attack in a flurry if I take a level in this Monk Archetype? My GM will go nuts.
You can attack in a flurry with a bastard sword... *if* you worship Ragathiel and you've got the feat Crusader's Flurry. Of course, you could trade the bastard sword for a 9-ring broadsword at the cost of one average point of damage (it's 1d8, critical like an axe), and then you don't need any feat to flurry with it.
You also can't wear armor or a shield if you're flurrying. If you've got a high charisma, you can end up with around the same armor level as wearing a breastplate without any armor on. Or if you take the Crane Style feats, you can have a (plate armor + shield) level of armor with nothing more than good charisma, a robe and a free hand when defending.
This isn't just a casual 'hey, pick up and flurry a bastard sword' thing; it requires planning and resources. But built right, a Paladin/Monk who does sword-fu in a robe can be pretty awesome both mechanically and flavor-wise; picture a Paladin in a holy robe swinging this thing around kung-fu style with one or two hands: 9-Ring Broadsword (pic)
Tell them to wait a few levels and you'll get channel. Multiclassing is terrible for paladins.
It's fine if the only thing you care about is keeping full BAB going and getting Divine Grace and skipping out of pally after 2 levels so you can play "My Charisma does literally everything" the character. At which point you take Noble Scion at first level and a level of Unchained Monk/Scaled Fist to get Cha to AC and if your dm is lenient, look into being a paladin of desna and picking up Desna's Shooting Star to get charisma to hit and damage with the starknife, which you conveniently have as an Heirloom Weapon. And if your DM is really REALLY lenient letting you be a Skeletal Champion so you can get Cha to HP. Thats the build I'd multiclass for :D
lots of stuff
So is the plan to make a full team, or just a single paladin to attach to the existing group?
Strong parties are designed as a team, while teams not designed together, often have weak links or areas where the party has no solutions. Teamwork feats, for example, work very well with parties designed as a team, but remain altogether lacking if only a few players have the teamwork feats.
Consider that if your paladin does go the channeling route, it becomes very feat demanding to improve channelling. Selective Channel, for example, is almost mandatory to use channels to heal in combat with living opponents (otherwise you heal both sides). If the focus is anti-undead, Turn Undead, Improved Channel, and Blazing Channel are all nice feats.
For the Paladin, do you have a deity selected? Irori has a nice feat that allows you to use Channel to restore Ki points to monks, which since you have a monk, might be a valid course. Apsu has a very nice option that allows you to burn channel as an immediate action to grant the party heavy resistance to elemental AoE attacks (like fireball or breath weapons). Innersea Gods has quite a few very practical feats to team based paladins and clerics to use with channelling.
For a cleric dip, two key routes there: For Anti-Undead, the Sun and Glory Domains present some rather substancial boosts to Channeling to harm undead. For Healing, the Healing Domain and the Mericful Healer archetype present rather impressive healing boosts.