Favorite Prestige Class


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

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What is everyone's favorite prestige class, along with why? I'm talking all of them, not just CRB and APG.

I personally don't have one, I like the concept, but it always seems likes a better idea to go with archetypes to achieve a character.

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

They aren't great that's for sure.

But well if I had to pick one favorite:

Sanguine Angel from Adventurer Guide Graymaiden section.

It's evocative and does support switch hitter style(not a lot of support for it out there), while keeping to the flavor of being erinyes based.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Eldritch Knight

Because to this day it remains the only practical way to get unrestricted access to the Wizard/Sorcerer spell list for a gish build. Just wish it had actual class features <_<


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Veiled Illusionist; it really is good for would-be illusionists who aren't arcane casters already.


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Hellknight -- both types. Apart from needing to be updated to work well with newer material, Hellknight is the seed of what Paladins, Antipaladins, and Holy Warriors of other religions/alignments should be like, and Hellknight Signifer(*) is the seed of what Inquisitors should be like (however, I like the Inquisitor chassis itself, so don't throw that away -- just having the Inquisitor flavor be on a base class seems conceptually wrong, just as having Paladin/Antipaladin be a base class seems conceptually wrong). Also would need to introduce prestige class archetypes to help flesh this out.

(*)Conceptually, Grey Gardener is another good fit for this, but has worse mechanics.

Edit:

Dasrak wrote:

Eldritch Knight

Because to this day it remains the only practical way to get unrestricted access to the Wizard/Sorcerer spell list for a gish build. Just wish it had actual class features <_<

How about this idea (which admittedly I haven't gotten to playtest) that DOESN'T use Eldritch Knight? VMC Magus gets you access to the Magus Arcana Maneuver Mastery, but doesn't give you effective Magus levels for it; Blade Adept Arcanist doesn't give you access to it, but gets you effective Magus levels. Bloodline Development Arcane Discovery progresses the Bloodrager Bloodline from your Blood Conduit Bloodrager dip (which also gives you martial weapon proficiency, a bonus Combat Feat, and Bloodrage, which qualifies you for Mad Magic so that you can Bloodrage and cast, and later use the Rage spell in place of your limited rounds of Bloodrage).


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
UnArcaneElection wrote:
How about this idea

Interesting build, but that low BAB makes me very nervous as to whether it will scale well at higher levels. You have only +8 BAB at level 15, whereas a typical Eldritch Knight would have +12 BAB. That's a pretty significant gap.


I love the idea of the Mystic Theurge. Those early levels working your way up to it are painful in the extreme, but still, the character I spent the most time on (only one I've ever played all the way from 1 to 20) was a Druid/Sorcerer/Mystic Theurge.

The Exchange

Evangelist and Holy Vindicator.

I play a lot of religious characters and like the flexibility of the Evangelist and the Vindicator is an nice option for a more martial cleric.


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The Mammoth Rider, because it's so far the only way to obtain a Huge companion, and considering how flexible the companion list can be, it's a good thing ;)

However, to be honest, I've... been falling off PrCs for quite some time now :( It's mostly due to the introduction of archetypes. Think about it for a moment: archetypes are essentially like PrCs, but without the prerequisites and the sudden halting of your base class, or classes, advancements. They allow you to customize your class without resorting to multiclassing and/or mandatory feat/skill selection.

For instance, the Mammoth Rider could essentially be a ranger archetype; I'm picking ranger because the rider's abilities are tied to hunting. Replace the favored terrain, combat style and spells with the rider's abilities and you're set. See what I mean?

Maybe if they added the feature that PrCs could increase your base class's abilities, it would have lessen the loss. I recall in Complete Scoundrel for 3.5 that PrCs had something called "+1 level of existing class features", that would have helped a lot.


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There are several that I like a lot. Tough to pick one.

Student of War
Living Monolith
Champion of the Enlightened
Cyphermage
Heritor Knight
Arcane Savant
Master Chymist
Dragon Disciple
Mystic Theurge

I want to like Eldritch Knight but can't get behind no class features and how little Diverse Training does.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

None of them. Prestige classes are from a bygone era. Archetypes are where it's at these days. :-)


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Shadow Dancer!!

and it would be better if you make it from Ranger, then you´ll have your animal companion, a trained pet (if you buy one), and a shadow servant (3 npc in the table)


Big fan of Noble Scion. Works so well with VMC's and the like while keeping a decent chunk of flavour throughout.


captain yesterday wrote:
None of them. Prestige classes are from a bygone era. Archetypes are where it's at these days. :-)

Except of course for clerics who have few useful archetype options. While rangers and barbarians do, PrCs can take them in other directions. Wizards, too.

It ain't that simple.


Dragon Disciple only way to make a Sorcerer decent in combat with only core (which was the only book I owned for a year) And still the best thAt I know of (without multiclassing)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

I don't play as clerics or wizards so I haven't noticed.

It is that simple for me. :-)


I'm also a fan of Evangelist. Cost of entry is low, you get some modest abilities, and it's effectively just delaying your main class advancement by one level. And the game flavor is amazing and varied, if that's your thing. Every character ends up being different because it depends on both your class and deity.

One of the advantages PrC's have over archetypes in general is that you're more likely to hit the capstone. I don't think I've ever been in a game that's gone to L20. Of course, the big disadvantage to PrC's is that so many of them are just unplayable because of ridiculous entrance requirements combined with subpar features.


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UnArcaneElection wrote:
Hellknight -- both types. Apart from needing to be updated to work well with newer material

....They were both just updated and reprinted in Adventurer's Guide. Or is there still something you feel is missing?

LittleMissNaga wrote:
I love the idea of the Mystic Theurge. Those early levels working your way up to it are painful in the extreme

It depends on your build, and what your DM allows. The feat Equipment Trick (Sunrod) would get you in earlier, or the Faith Magic arcane discovery on a Wizard/Arcanist to access it with just a single level of divine casting.

And options to use various stats for spell casting (Feyspeaker Druid, Elder Mythos Cultist, etc) has opened up more options for classes working together without being too MAD.

JiCi wrote:
Maybe if they added the feature that PrCs could increase your base class's abilities, it would have lessen the loss. I recall in Complete Scoundrel for 3.5 that PrCs had something called "+1 level of existing class features", that would have helped a lot.

Which is why the best PrC's DO advance your base class features.

captain yesterday wrote:
None of them. Prestige classes are from a bygone era. Archetypes are where it's at these days. :-)

BLASPHEMY!!

I like archetypes, but I like prestige classes. At least when they are well done. Pathfinder has changed the balance of things, which does make many PrC less attractive. But good prestige classes are certainly something that I feel still have a place in the game, and I look forward to seeing the new ones they have in upcoming books.

PrC I like include:

Battle Herald
Evangelist
Sanguine Angel
Stargazer
Winter Witch


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Heritor Knight, for sure. Overall just a really fun prestige class with some cool abilities and great entry for fighters.

Scarab Sages

Shadowdancer and Stalwart Defender.
I love the shadow abilities and companion on the the shadowdancer, and I love the idea of an unmovable stone that the defender brings.


Dragon Disciple
Horizon Walker
Arcane Archer
Mammoth Rider
Shadowdancer


Yeah, I forgot to mention Shadow Dancer, which is the other PrC I really like. Positioning is one of the most important aspects of combat, and Shadow Dancer really shines there, though it takes a while for it to ramp up.

The only real problem with the class in 3.5, mechanically, was the depndancy on shadows, which wasn't something the game modeled or even defined. PF fixed that.


I love the mammoth rider and master chymist, though I do wish you could replace the bomb upgrades with sneak attack if you are going Vivisectionist (which is great for a mutagen focused alchemist).

I keep trying to make a mystic theurge, I love the idea, but haven't done well in practice.

Living Monolith is cool, though the update to it made it a little harder to get into, but not by much.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Dragon Disciple
Umbrella Court Agent
Envoy Of Balance
Hellknight (both)

Edit: should be Umbrella Court Agent


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Chris Ballard wrote:
Umbrella Court Agent

I'd play this.


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avr wrote:
Chris Ballard wrote:
Umbrella Court Agent
I'd play this.

We are pretty bad ass.

Grand Lodge

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The Sanguine Angel Prestige class actually makes me want to play in an Evil themed campaign. I like the flavor of it and I think the mechanics are very good as well.

Master Chymist is loads of fun for a melee or switch hitter alchemist. I took this with my -1 character in PFS and was pretty pleased with how it worked out.


Samasboy1 wrote:
JiCi wrote:
Maybe if they added the feature that PrCs could increase your base class's abilities, it would have lessen the loss. I recall in Complete Scoundrel for 3.5 that PrCs had something called "+1 level of existing class features", that would have helped a lot.
Which is why the best PrC's DO advance your base class features.

They are few and far between though... and it's mostly just spellcasting.


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Mary Poppins wrote:
avr wrote:
Chris Ballard wrote:
Umbrella Court Agent
I'd play this.
We are pretty bad ass.

I hear it plays well in The Sodden Lands but elsewhere it's just meh.

Dark Archive

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JiCi wrote:
They are few and far between though... and it's mostly just spellcasting.

I remember back in 3.5, it took *years* before there was a PrC that advanced Domain abilities for clerics. As a result, if you played a Cleric that had domain abilities that ended up being relevant past 1st level (such as Air, Earth, Fire, Water, Death, Destruction, Magic, Plant, Protection, Strength or Travel) and weren't just 'free feat at 1st level!' (like War), PrCing out of Cleric could hurt.

Anywho, my favorite Golarion PrCs are the core Shadow Dancer and Dragon Disciple*, and the Magaambyan Initiate and Hellknight Signifer.

That said, I'd love to see Dragon Disciple alternates for Celestial, Infernal, Undead, etc. Sorcerers... Dragon Disciple is cool and all, but this ain't AD&D, and not all sorcerers are Draconic these days.

OTOH, my gripe with PrCs in general is the same as with Archetypes. They get kind of bloat-y. In many, if not most, PrCs, I see maybe three things that matter, and a whole lot of '+1 level of existing class' or 'advance one thing like sneak attack this level' padding it out to 10 levels, when it, IMO, would have worked much better as a five level, or even *three level* bit of prestige training/class. Why advance some or all features of the previous class, when you *could just take a level of the previous class?* It seems counter-intuitive to me. If you want to gate off a certain ability to not be available 'too soon,' gate it off. (You can't take level 2 of this class and get [awesome-thing-here] before character level 10. Boom. No four levels of useless filler just to prevent someone from getting [awesome-thing-here] at level 6.)


Chris Ballard wrote:

Dragon Disciple

Umbrella Court Agent
Envoy Of Balance
Hellknight (both)

Edit: should be Umbrella Court Agent

Do you mean Umbral court agent? And fall prey to auto correct twice?


Ancient Dragon Master wrote:
Chris Ballard wrote:

Dragon Disciple

Umbrella Court Agent
Envoy Of Balance
Hellknight (both)

Edit: should be Umbrella Court Agent

Do you mean Umbral court agent? And fall prey to auto correct twice?

No. He really loves working with Wesker that much.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Umbral Court Agent*


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My favorite autocorrected PrC's:

  • Aphasic Dancer
  • Beekeeper
  • Broodmare
  • Collegiate Arsonist
  • Diagram
  • Master Chai Mist
  • Rose Garden


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I'd totally play an Aphasic Dancer!
Master Chai Mist sounds like something very zen. Maybe a PrC for monks? XD
Some of those I cannot even tell where they have come from xD


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Samasboy1 wrote:
UnArcaneElection wrote:
Hellknight -- both types. Apart from needing to be updated to work well with newer material
....They were both just updated and reprinted in Adventurer's Guide. Or is there still something you feel is missing? {. . .}

Okay, that's new. I'm going to have to see this as soon as I can. (I knew they added information about the Hellknights as organizations, but I hadn't realized that they had updated the actual prestige classes.)

Dasrak wrote:
UnArcaneElection wrote:
How about this idea
Interesting build, but that low BAB makes me very nervous as to whether it will scale well at higher levels. You have only +8 BAB at level 15, whereas a typical Eldritch Knight would have +12 BAB. That's a pretty significant gap.

Yes, but look more closely. You pick up the Magus Arcana Maneuver Mastery (which can only work with the combination of Blade Adept Arcanist and VMC Magus), which gives you full BAB for your combat maneuver of choice, and you use this maneuver on your Attacks of Opportunity (it needs to be a combat maneuver that you can make in place of an attack). You can use True Strike if you ABSOLUTELY HAVE TO make one land, and Staggering Fall (eventually Persistent Staggering Fall) to make it hurt worse. You use Long Arm and/or Enlarge Person and/or the Aberrant Bloodrager Bloodline to get reach for this (the Aberrant Bloodrager Bloodline is better than the Aberrant Sorcerer Bloodline for this purpose), and Enlarge Person (and later spells like Monstrous Physique and eventually Giant Form) also bumps up your size for when you're up against something that would normally be too big for you to use your combat maneuver on.

* * * * * * * *

Coquelicot Dragon wrote:

My favorite autocorrected PrC's:

Aphasic Dancer
Beekeeper
Broodmare
Collegiate Arsonist
Diagram
Master Chai Mist
Rose Garden

Collegiate Arsonist? That sounds disturbingly familiar . . . .

For a while in 2014 - 2016 I was stuck doing much of my posting on my phone, and around this time I had the concept of a Halfling debuffing Witch (including use of Halfling Jinx; more recently, add the Creepy Doll alternate racial trait to that). Stupid phone kept changing it to Half lingerie debugging Witch . . . .


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UnArcaneElection wrote:
...

Allow me to cross-post this so you can see what changed for Hellknight: Pathfinder Adventurer's Guide Reprints

Keeping with the thread, my favorites are Dragon Disciple, Soul Warden (Before the hallowed necromancer wizard archetype), and Chevalier, which I wish they'd update.


Samasboy1 wrote:
LittleMissNaga wrote:
I love the idea of the Mystic Theurge. Those early levels working your way up to it are painful in the extreme

It depends on your build, and what your DM allows. The feat Equipment Trick (Sunrod) would get you in earlier, or the Faith Magic arcane discovery on a Wizard/Arcanist to access it with just a single level of divine casting.

And options to use various stats for spell casting (Feyspeaker Druid, Elder Mythos Cultist, etc) has opened up more options for classes working together without being too MAD.

The Theurge I mentioned actually did use that one Sorcerer bloodline that swaps out Charisma-based stuff and instead uses Wisdom!

Didn't sneak my way into it early in that particular case, though as a GM, I generally still allow pre-errata methods of sneaking into PrCs early via SLAs.

So long as people aren't breaking my "I'm trusting you with these freedoms, please don't abuse that trust" rule (and I've had the good fortune to have not faced much of that), then all is well.


Quote:
Half lingerie debugging Witch

Sounds seductive, but it mostly depends on what is the witch wearing to replace the half of lingerie she is not wearing...

Grand Lodge

I want to be a sentinal when I level up.


Dark Midian wrote:
UnArcaneElection wrote:
...

Allow me to cross-post this so you can see what changed for Hellknight: Pathfinder Adventurer's Guide Reprints

Keeping with the thread, my favorites are Dragon Disciple, Soul Warden (Before the hallowed necromancer wizard archetype), and Chevalier, which I wish they'd update.

I forgot all about the Chevalier. Do love that Class, concept throws itself well on dozens of characters with little to no fuss.


I'm glad folks are enjoying the sanguine angel. ^_^

I'm hoping to play one myself at some point (assuming it eventually becomes PFS-legal).

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

As for stuff I didn't work on, I'm quite fond of the evangelist. I love the various deities of Pathfinder, so anything that lets me add deity-specific flavor to a nontraditional concept is awesome. ^_^


Stalwart Defender because I like a defensive play style for melee, and it does a decent job "fixing" fighters archetypes that were released before AWT/AAT and trade away armor/weapon training. Particularly Phalanx Soldier (which even with Shield Brace is still the best way to use a tower shield IMO).

Otherwise, I like the Living Monolith, Envoy of Balance, and Brother of the Seal because they give unique, useful, and flavorful abilities which are hard to come by through PC classes.


Technomancer!

Resistance is futile.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Samasboy1 wrote:
UnArcaneElection wrote:
Hellknight -- both types. Apart from needing to be updated to work well with newer material

....They were both just updated and reprinted in Adventurer's Guide. Or is there still something you feel is missing?

LittleMissNaga wrote:
I love the idea of the Mystic Theurge. Those early levels working your way up to it are painful in the extreme

It depends on your build, and what your DM allows. The feat Equipment Trick (Sunrod) would get you in earlier, or the Faith Magic arcane discovery on a Wizard/Arcanist to access it with just a single level of divine casting.

And options to use various stats for spell casting (Feyspeaker Druid, Elder Mythos Cultist, etc) has opened up more options for classes working together without being too MAD.

JiCi wrote:
Maybe if they added the feature that PrCs could increase your base class's abilities, it would have lessen the loss. I recall in Complete Scoundrel for 3.5 that PrCs had something called "+1 level of existing class features", that would have helped a lot.

Which is why the best PrC's DO advance your base class features.

captain yesterday wrote:
None of them. Prestige classes are from a bygone era. Archetypes are where it's at these days. :-)

BLASPHEMY!!

I like archetypes, but I like prestige classes. At least when they are well done. Pathfinder has changed the balance of things, which does make many PrC less attractive. But good prestige classes are certainly something that I feel still have a place in the game, and I look forward to seeing the new ones they have in upcoming books.

PrC I like include:

Battle Herald
Evangelist
Sanguine Angel
Stargazer
Winter Witch

It's not blasphemy, it's called an opinion, and like Spider-Man reboots, everyone has one. :-)

That said, you have a pretty good list and I've thought of a couple myself that I like. So, I stand corrected.


I'd have to say, for paizo created prestige classes, shadow dancer is my favorite. I'd almost never go into it from rogue or monk though; as redundant features such as evasion and uncanny dodge become wasted opportunities (though archetypes could make that a non-issue?).
I do have one issue with Shadow Dancer though. The last paragraph of Summon Shadow makes it a feature I likely won't use or will only use occasionally, and never for combat. To elaborate, the possible negative level isn't really an issue, there are spells to cure that; it is the 30 day wait to summon a new one.


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I miss the 15-level Hellknight PrC they did in Council of Thieves.


Dark Midian wrote:
UnArcaneElection wrote:
...

Allow me to cross-post this so you can see what changed for Hellknight: Pathfinder Adventurer's Guide Reprints

{. . .}

So they made some changes, but didn't add anything to help post-Core class characters (especially all those 6/9 casters) that are considering becoming Hellknights or Hellknight Signifers; they made Hellknight Signifer better for Clerics (core class), and it's still okay for Sorcerers and Wizards, but it's still a trap for Magi, for instance, and has nothing for Psychics (although they did add upgrade Assiduous Gaze to use against Psychics). Less obviously, they didn't make things any better for a Cavalier (even on who has chosen a Hellknight Cavalier Order) considering becoming a Hellknight (even if you have chosen a Hellknight Cavalier Order, it won't progress through your prestige class levels unless you did something weird like went some other martial class VMC Cavalier).


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

I wish they would use the aligned class feature more in prestige classes and work it into the older ones that would benefit from it, like Hellknight or Eldritch Knight. :-)

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