Poison for Combat and / or Assassination


Friend wants to make a poison using character for a new campaign that will be based with evil or at lest neutral characters.

Wants to use poison in general combat as well as eliminating (or incapacitating) potentially problem people.

I've never made a poisoner and really don't know how to go about it. I would assume it would have to be an alchemist class or you would be spending a fortune on buying high save DC poisons. But maybe I'm wrong.

So how would you build a poisoner?

Alchemist is a solid choice, that's what I would pick. They have talents to increase the DC of poisons as you allude to.

I would probably take vivesectionist to add some sneak attack onto your stealthy poison attacks as well. Sticky poisons can make poison more practical in combat by sticking around for most of it, depending on your intelligence.

Should it multiclass with assassin or something to be more able to deliver the poisons?

Not at all, though it isn't terrible if you like Death Attack for some reason. But Mutagen is such a good offensive buff, why pass it up?

Here's how I would build it:

Take a race with a natural poison. Grippli and Vishkanya are the two available to players, who base their DC on their Con. This allows for these races to have a readily available source of poison to alter if they need it.

Vivisectionist, so we get sneak attack as a rogue and Mutagen, because it's really just that good. Throw in beastmorph as well, since poisons can be applied to weapons long before combat begins, and the various benefits of beastmorph are fairly fantastic.
Get the discoveries: celestial poison (to affect outsiders and the like), sticky poison, concentrate poison, malignant poison. The DC's should be fairly decent and you get plenty of uses from the poisons.

Then, get the feats: Daggermark Lore, Pernicious Stab, Poison Focus (of poison of choice), Power Attack, Powerful Poisoning

Not strictly in that order, mind you, but that's on the builder to decide. I definitely wouldn't touch Assassin until 10th at minimum, so you can get Malignant Poison.

Also, consider using the Unchained Poison rules. They provide extra stuff like damage from poison regardless if a save is made, and some bonuses other than ability damage.

A poison darter ranger is another option; it seems to be designed to work for a grippli with the toxic skin alternate racial trait. Between the class sneak attack, the Sense Vitals spell and whatever poison you use, those could be some scary blowgun darts. It can use alchemist discoveries or rogue talents in place of combat style feats if desired.

If you want free use poison (cause otherwise he'll probably never use poisons realistically).

Toxicant archetype (eldritch poisoner is also a thing but it is also isn't one I would suggest sadly.Too restricted) Alchemist. Gives up mutagen.. but you get a scaling poisons per day that work with all the poison upping things.
Either snagging vivi for sneak attack, or stick with bombs (poison bomb is fun~)

Be human, take that racial hertiage feat Nagaji. Take the favored class bonus from it for Alchemist. That'll raise your DC of any poison you create. (Techicnally, as it says "create" not "craft" then it would also up the DC of Poisoner Jacket poisons. Though Milage may vary on GM's finding it silly--I don't as it represents your knowledge of how poisons are formulated.

Then take the usual poison discoveries.

Most of the feats above are certainly usable.

I've played the bomb-toxicant version, with a blow gun and "startoss style" (cause technically blowguns are thrown items for the feat. go figure) That was plenty of fun. Though the damage was very low on the initial hit. But I was mostly focused entirely on getting the poison flowing for the status effects. He also had a rapier, with dex to damage and sticky poisons.
Not the strongest of things, but it was pretty fun.
I tried it with a firearm later (for the touch attack and upping up INT for more DC.. but I dont' advise it)


Ooh. I've never seen that Poison Darter Ranger archetype... That is one I have to checkout... it has some good potential.
The action speed is a bit of a pain though. but it would just rely pre-combat prep.

Liberty's Edge

Actually, if you can convince (or are) the GM to allow eldritch poisoner to use alchemist discoveries affecting poison, it's a very strong and interesting choice. Reliable poison source that's not overpowered, with the ability to add interesting status riders to the poison.

Otherwise, make sure it's a class with its own source of poison, such as toxicant/poison darter, unless your GM is willing to houserule poison cost wayyyy down. Poison's terribly ineffective/expensive as written.

Vivisectionist Alchemist 6-8 -> Martial Class

Sticky poison discovery + drow poison. Other than that build for accurate attacks in mass. Quantity of saving throws over quantity. Coupe de grace when they finally fail their save. High dc poison costs to much to use long run. Alchemical allocation if it works with poisons would be fantastic. Even then drow poison is best poison.

Urushiol archetype druid аdd skinshaper archetype. Very unusual assassin.

Problem with Urushiol, is they dont' get access to the Alchemist's poison discoveries.. Most importantly Celestial Poison, which really allowsy ou to use poison in most game situations. The DC wont' be that great either due to the lack of upping the DC abilities.

Granted you're still a full tilt druid, even if you get barely any uses per day (over all) you're still a full up druid.
It would make a great NPC assassin sorta thing, but PC wise, it wouldn't be very poisony. Do get that poison spell though which is a great little bonus.
Would've been cool if you could sink spells to restore poisons per day somehow.

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