Kitsune Realistic Likeness Class - Mesmerist, Bard, something else?


So, I have desperately wanted to play a class built around the kitsune "Realistic Likeness" feat (the one that allows you to Alter Self into a specific person) for some time, but I can't figure out what class to put her in.

I have this whole character concept built where she's addicted to her alter self ability and she doesn't really have a concept of her actual self; she gets lost in the personas she takes over and she became an adventurer to get her fix.

The absolutely most glorious class that I can find that would fit this backstory so far would be the Mesmerist class with the Thought Eater archetype, but I'm not sure how to make either Mesmerists or Thought Eaters effective in battle, and because this would be for PFS, my character would need to be effective in battle. I've played around a little bit with the occult classes, and I have had problems with them because of things being immune to mind effects (although I see mesmerists can eventually get around that somewhat with Psychic Inception), but the limited number of spells today and the fact that the spells only go up to level 6th mean this clearly isn't meant to be a full spellcaster, and I'm uncertain as to how to build one.

Another option would be to go with a bard. I'm not sure what, if any, archetype I should take if I went bard. Nothing about bardic music in general seems particularly great or terrible in favor (flavor wise) for my character, although the spell list of bards is good (Vocal Alteration, Gallant Inspiration) and bardic music could be good in combat (the -2 str for kitsune means that being martial for my character would be harder).

Then, of course, there is Some Other Option I Haven't Thought Of. Maybe a rogue of some type? I don't know.

Finally, with Blood of the Beasts being out but not ruled as being legal or illegal yet, Keen Kitsune means that the +2 int and +2 dex kitsune might be ruled legal for PFS and put some more options on the table that aren't out there yet.

Does anyone have any suggestions? I really want to play this character, but I'm feeling very lost.

I was thinking about this just today, and am kind of leaning towards the Arcane Trickster with a Fey Sorcerer for the arcane class.

Bards are, of course, always awesome. While I haven't looked closely at the Sandman Archetype, I could really see Realistic Likeness as being a great way to get close enough to use their spell stealing ability. They're all about deception, which Realistic Likeness would add a lot too.

I would also recommend looking at an Inquisitor with the Infiltrator archetype. Ranged Inquisitors can be devastating, and their added abilities all would go well with realistic likeness.

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Is Spirit Guide Oracle PFS legal? Swapping spirits when you swap personality could work.

Scarab Sages

I've wanted to play a kitsune rogue with that feat for a while, "a fox is no one."
Deific Obedience for Pharasma and you can be a dagger demon.

Unchained Rogue is always fun, lots of skills to make the backstory mechanical.

If keen kitsune goes through, an Occultist using implements from various personas could be cool (and the flexible, day by day power allocation is good for it too)

And if you want to be silly, an urban Bloodrager could do the trick (change faces before/after raging.

How about an archaeologist or investigator? You can be anyone and fake having their skills via luck/inspiration.

Sovereign Court

I've been thinking about a similar character, and it turns out there are actually some really good non-mind affecting spells on the mesmerist list, like Faerie Fire, Ill Omen, Silence (you're 3/4 BAB class with no verbal components, you can build to survive while standing next to an enemy caster) and Glitterdust.

A combination of Unchained Rogue (Kitsune Trickster) and Investigator (Empiricist) can make your Int really shine.

Inquisitor (Infiltrator) can do exactly what you want. You can make that she was an agent that went in so many missions and became so many people that she lost herself.

I just built a character similarly built around realistic likeness. I don't play PFS, so I don't know much about what sort of things they would make legal, but in the vigilante social talents in Blood of the Beast there is one that would let you add your seamless guise bonus to the disguise check resulting from polymorph effects (hence realistic likeness), so that +20 to disguise, and another +10 from the shapeshifing ability, is a flat +30 before adding your actual disguise ranks.
I built that character using the Teisatsu archetype, but since PFS disallows that, you could easily go stalker specialization and take the above social talent.
Also in Blood of the Beast there is a feat that lets you get a feint maneuver off when you shapeshift in combat, so I imagine that would work well with your concept, and the stalker vigilante, as a successful feint would get off the lesser hidden strike.

I hope I helped!

I would think the Intrigue Mystery Oracle is *exactly* what you're looking for. Kitsune make awesome Oracles, including being able to grab elven curved blade proficiency with 4 levels of favored class bonus. Beyond that, tons of interesting Archetypes.

Intrigue Mystery very weak in combat, to my thinking. Or I'm wrong?

PhD. Okkam wrote:
Intrigue Mystery very weak in combat, to my thinking. Or I'm wrong?

I'm not sure it offers much in combat, but it's still an Oracle; so being effective with a weapon and casting good spells isn't hard to do. Agile elven curved blade or Slashing Grace wakizashi, add Divine Favor. Archetypes like Dual-Cursed or Warsighted add to combat ability.

Actually, to go back to the OP, I don't think it would be that difficult to have a Mesmer do fine in combat. The Mirror Image type trick and others are pretty good defensively along with Disorienting Stare, and Painful Stare + Intense pain is pretty nasty.

Liberty's Edge

Ninja, with some dip in Fighter if needed for improved martial prowess

I once built a PC like this for a player who hated having to calculate or manage complicated things

Vanishing trick, wall-climbing and shapeshifting make for an excellent infiltrator

So, I just wanted to hop in this morning and let everyone know that I've read their responses and have been looking over what they have said. As of yet, I still haven't come to a decision, and my only conclusion so far is, "Ah, there are so many options with potentially neat flavor!" For example, I think having a rougey or ninjay kitsune would be awesome favor; she lurks in the shadows popping out each time as a new individual! Being a mesmerist would be neat, too; she controls the minds of those around her, bending them to see her as she wills. Religiously connecting her to Sivanah somehow would be wonderful, too (like via an inquisitor, although I may wait a while before I build an inquisitor, as I already have one in play). Investigator sounds fun, too; she loses herself in the information she gathers, especially in the information about other people she gathers.

There are just so many options, but I'm not really sure how to make them work? Like, because kitsune have -2 str, sending them into melee is tricky unless one does a dex build, but they don't have the feats to really go ranged, especially because I'll be sinking one of them into Realistic Likeness. So I've been building up a lot of characters over the last couple of days (like I'll build up a ninja) and then worry about whether or not I've made her in such a way that she'll be effective in combat. I feel that this is an area where I struggle in PFS: I'm not very good in combat or building characters that are very good in combat, and it worries me because I know that this is a collaborative game and I want to pull my weight.

Well, for a Mesmerist, some combat stuff that pops out at me right away:

Ill Omen: Level 1, no-save, force some rerolls on anything.

False Life: free HP!

Glitterdust: blind-bomb.

Mirror Image: defense that goes way beyond just more AC.

Confusion: the circus is in town, and it's the opposition. Only level 3 for a Mesmer.

Vampiric Touch: cool spell, usually not so strong... enter Mesmer's Painful Stare. Now that's some vampiric awesomeness; they could snack-up an average of around 30hp by the time they get level 3 spells.

Tricks - Misdirection, Mesmeric Mirror, False Flanker, Compel Alacrity.

Painful Stare, plus Intense Pain and possibly other feats. This ability alone means that a Mesmer can damage something pretty well once per round at least, including with Vampiric Touch...

Hynotic Stare with Disorientation, plus others.

The Fey Trickster Archetype opens up Druid/Ranger spells, which could be interesting.

I only skimmed the thread but what about Skinshaper Druid?

Another idea would be to check out the Vigilante. I think that would work really well thematically.

Grand Lodge

Amnesiac Psychic? "Who am I? I think this face feels right today."

And Keen Kitsune is now PFS legal!

How about the Medium (from Occult Adventures)? Be a different class each day.

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