Help with Core PFS Rogue


Advice

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I am playing a similar concept in CORE PFS, and this is my build plan (though always subject to modification due to circumstances and I am focusing on ranger instead of rogue and the character is human).

STR 14, DEX 14 (16), CON 14, INT 10, WIS 14, CHA 10

Traits: Reactionary, Ancient Historian

(1st): 1st level ranger
(1st): point blank shot – 1st level human feat
(1st): precise shot - 1st level character feat

(2nd): 1st level rogue

(3rd): 2nd level rogue
(3rd): trap spotter - 2nd level rogue talent
(3rd): weapon focus longbow – 3rd level character feat

(4th): 2nd level ranger (archery combat style)
(4th): rapid shot – 2nd level ranger style feat
(4th): +1 DEX

(5th): 3rd level ranger
(5th): deadly aim - 5th level character feat

(6th): 4th level ranger

(7th): 5th level ranger
(7th): many shot - 7th level character feat

(8th): 6th level ranger
(8th): improved precise shot – 6th level ranger style feat
(8th): +1 DEX

(9th): 3rd level rogue
(9th): iron will - 9th level character feat

(10th): 4th level rogue
(10th): combat trick improved initiative – 4th level rogue talent

(11th): 7th level ranger
(11th): skill focus disable device - 11th level character feat

Shadow Lodge

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...So let's say 4 dex, 3 enhancement, 8 BAB, 1 weapon focus and 1 Point Blank
I don't know why you think his DEX bonus will only be +4 at 11th when it's already +4 at 4th without buying a thing.
Quote:
for a reliable +17/12 to hit at level 11 for 1d8+4 damage. Or +12/12/7 for 1d8+10 with rapid shot and deadly aim. That's still needing a 13 or 18 to hit against your average CR 11 creature.

Question: where did I ever maintain that the character would always Rapid Shot and Deadly Aim?

...I get the impression you've never ran a Stealth/Perception murder-rogue before. The kind of build that is capable of initiating combat on his terms versus an unaware opponent, riding out the surprise round drinking a buff potion, then full-attacking the next round versus Mr. Still Unaware's flat-footed AC.

And for the fiftytwelveth time, the dwarf can take out the lights and murder everybody in the dark. -- That is something he can do that applies huge penalties to opponent AC that no other rogue save a half-orc can accomplish versus a wide variety of targets. Halfling rogues have better raw numbers to skills and attack, but dwarves can alter the terms of the combat itself. Get used to asking the GM about the illumination wherever your are.

-- So he can't take out the lights every combat, and likely not even half or a third of them. The point is that he can still dish out enough damage (a 3/4ths BAB archer's job is to take out the "wobblies" before they get their turn, not bring down mastodons), and is a net-contributor (because he's not getting his head caved in by enemy full-attacks), and didn't gimp his starting attributes in a way that butchered his rogue class skills and racial saving throws.

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And why would the archer rogue take point?
...because he's a CON:16, WIS:16 Dwarf with Stonecunning and Trap Spotting (with both you'll often receive two rolls), Trap Sense +n, the highest Perception score in the party, and who can save+2 or evade a great many unpleasant things that would take an unskilled, lousy-saves human fighter right out of the encounter the moment it began?
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That's not where he wants to be in case a fight breaks out.
A competent rogue on-point has the fights break out on his terms, not the enemy's via surprise/ambush.
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He should be standing 5 feet behind the heavy armored fighter. Close enough to spot traps for the team,

To get the automatic checks from Stonecunning and Trap Spotting, you need to be within 10'. If Mr. full-plate is clanking in the front, enemies will always be alerted and always enjoy ambush.

You may want to be behind the fighter during combat, but you don't want him on-point during exploration (where he ends up down a pit when the ambush is sprung).

Quote:
...but not the first to be engaged in an ambush.
If, as the rogue, you are not ahead quietly scouting and ascertaining threats, then you are failing at one of the expected and necessary duties of the class. If, in addition, you're a strength/melee who routinely getting his head ripped off and draining resources, then you're basically sucking at everything.)In the case of bad luck (e.g., GM secretly rolls my 2 for Perception while the enemy rolled a 19 for its Stealth), that's what Reactionary and ImpInit are there for: going first and bugging out of dangerville.
Quote:
in PFS just doing more damage than you take doesn't make you a net contributor.

I never made such as argument, and that's not what net contribution is.

If the party must do (X) damage to defeat the scenario while not incurring more than (Y) damage itself (or PCs die), the characters with a high personal X/Y ratio are net-contributors. Light-infantry in PFS have notoriously low X/Y ratio: they require constant medication in combat because an enemy attacking light-inf usually hits whereas the same enemy attacking a tank usually whiffs.

If a rogue is designed for melee, then he's shoehoned into low X/Y in PFS if he's under any expection to contribute to encounters at all, gets killed his third time by 6th or 7th (if not earlier), and is retired by the player who correctly determines that the build is suboptimal.

Granted: Core is training wheels versus creampuffier opponents, but the arguments stand because I've BTDT in PFS. The 90% of mods that are cakewalks are there to fatten you up for the 8% that are tough and the 2% that are infamous TPK-generators. Straight-class strength-rogue light-inf die like mice.

Silver Crusade

Thank you everyone with your thoughts and advice. I have revised my rogue a little bit.

:

I have a core PFS rogue
Level 1 (He has only played The Beger's Pearl)
Race: Dwarf
Abilities: Str: 14, Dex: 14, Con:16,Int: 13, Wis 12, Cha: 10
Hit points: 14
Skills: Acrobatics: +6, Bluff: +4, Climb: +6, Diplomacy: +4, Disable Device: +9, Perception: +6 (+7 Traps), Sense Motive +5, Sleight of Hand +6, Stealth +6, Survival +6
Feats: Toughness
Traits: Observant, Poverty Stricken
Weapons: Dagger, Light Crossbow, Morning Star, Sap, Short Sword, Sling,

Cold Iron battle axe, Alchemical silver short sword,

Ammo: Crossbow Bolts 20, Sling Stones 10
Armor: Leather Armor
Gear: Alchemist fire X5, Backpack,Bedroll,Belt pouch, Caltrops, Chalk, Crowbar,Flint and Steel, Grappling hook, hammer,Mess kit, Mirror, Pickpocket outfit, Piton, Pot, Rope, Soap, Thieves Tools Masterwork, Torch, Trail Rations X5, Water skin.

Cash: 325gp

Magic: Wand of Cure Light Wounds ( Spent 2 Prestige Points for it)

I made a couple of adjustments to the ability scores, and I purchased a cold iron battle axe, and an alchemical silver short sword.


What do you all think? thanks


@Sir Thugsalot: I'm sorry but what you're trying to point out here is a playstyle that is just badly inefficient. This kind of rogueing takes up alot of spotlight and effort for almost no result. Its outperformed by every other concept which also doesn't take up so much spotlight.

The damage you deal - even under perfect conditions is not relevant at level 11, not at all. Of course it's there and it's more than the group could dish out without the rogue but it has to be compared to actual alternatives and there every other regular build will contribute so much more it is reasonable to ask if this rogue is a functional PC.
And by the way - this build for sure cannot "murder anyone in the dark". You can build characters at level 6 who can contribute more to fights and also out of combat.

More than that as I mentioned it takes up a lot of spotlight. Your advice to exploit darkness is terrible teamworkwise and will also get you killed easily. If you still want to do it it will take up time at the table.

If you don't have all those conditions you will contribute even less. He is not doing "enough" damage.

And next: How does a rogue anticipates an ambush of invisible enemies? Because why on golarion should someone at CR 3+ not be invisible when ambushing? Its cheap, its reliable and it's something your rogue wont be able to deal with. You yourself have no means to deal with any kind of advanced ambush tactics. None at all. One detection spell and you're done. One bad stealth roll and you're done. You have no mobility, no ability to escape, fly, turn invisible, nova the encounter, call for help - nothing. A single spell that hampers your movement will take you out then.

Of course there may be games where your GM and your party members will provide conditions where you can enjoy such characters. But this should definitly not be taken for granted.

Shadow Lodge

Wasum wrote:
The damage you deal - even under perfect conditions is not relevant at level 11

If you're stipulating "perfect conditions", then he's dishing over 120 damage in four ranged attacks when his flat-footed, unaware and possibly blind opponent has poop AC.

-- You can't have your cake and eat it too if you give me the cake.

<munch cake>


ElyasRavenwood wrote:

Thank you everyone with your thoughts and advice. I have revised my rogue a little bit.

** spoiler omitted **
What do you all think? thanks

Well, you've got a much better shot at surviving, which is certainly a good thing. I would very much consider changing out the Toughness feat for Dodge, since besides being a free AC improvement, Dodge is required for different paths of feats that are useful for a Rogue. To break down what things are going to look like as you go forwards:

Armor Class:

You've currently got 14DEX and the ability to wear light armor. Fair enough; at level 1 nobody is wearing full plate armor anyhow. But as levels go up, this is going to become a concern. A Fighter wearing full plate who has 12DEX has 10 points of armor from just his armor and his DEX bonus. With a shield, it would be even more. Your Rogue, as it is now, will have just 6 points of armor from a chain shirt and his DEX bonus. Overall, it means that fighting up front with those shiny melee weapons of yours is going to get more and more dangerous as levels go up.

The easiest way to fix this in the long run would be to take the Armor Expert trait, which lowers the Armor Check Penalty of any armor by 1. If you have this trait, then you can wear a breastplate made of mithral without any penalty to skills or attack rolls, even though you don't have medium armor proficiency. As well, if you decide you want to use a shield at some point, you can use a masterwork buckler or light shield without any problems even if you don't have shield proficiency.

Fighting Style:

It's a good idea to know how your character is going to fight later on, especially as a Rogue who only gets a sneak attack bonus if you fight in certain ways. You can wield a melee weapon and just get into fights trying to score flanking attacks with allies, which can work ok; but if you're going to do that with an axe or whatever normal weapon, you'll probably want a sturdy shield and a decent armor... and to be prepared for having some big bad beast give you a possibly fatal beating.

The feat Spring Attack has been mentioned, which is great for a Rogue since you can jump out of cover, make an attack, and run off again; this works well with flanking or with stealth. But it's not super easy to pull off all the time, especially as a slow-moving Dwarf. So if you want to do that, you'll need to plan well for it.

Another interesting option is the feat "Shot on the Run", which lets you run out from cover for a ranged attack and then run back into cover. It's perfect for stealth tactics. With decent strength and dexterity, it might actually work really nicely with spears - throwing a two-handed spear at something hurts bad, and they're much easier to throw with Shot on the Run than normally. With the Quick Draw feat you can easily get out another of your throwing spears or get out your melee weapons when you need to. So you could carry a few decent quality throwing spears, and then have a good solid melee weapon (even another spear if you want) ready.

Both of these combat styles are much easier to use if you take a single level of Fighter, but you don't have to worry about that right now.


Sir Thugsalot wrote:
Wasum wrote:
The damage you deal - even under perfect conditions is not relevant at level 11

If you're stipulating "perfect conditions", then he's dishing over 120 damage in four ranged attacks when his flat-footed, unaware and possibly blind opponent has poop AC.

-- You can't have your cake and eat it too if you give me the cake.

<munch cake>

This does not interfere with anything I said. And if what you understand as perfect conditions (critting every single hit what in my mind is not to be considered a "condition") is applied to other builds at this level, 120 points of damage are fairly poor.

Shadow Lodge

Wasum wrote:
And if what you understand as perfect conditions (critting every single hit...

Who said anything about getting crits?


Whatever it is you assumed - it doesn't matter. I have no idea what point you're trying to make. The above build you posted has a lot of problems as I explained earlier.

You last two post were not contributing much to this conversation.

Shadow Lodge

<context preservation clause now in-effect>

Wasum wrote:
Sir Thugsalot wrote:
Wasum wrote:
And if what you understand as perfect conditions (critting every single hit...
Who said anything about getting crits?
Whatever it is you assumed - it doesn't matter. I ha--

*stomp*

If your only hope of winning an argument on the internet is to concoct that someone held a position that they did not actually hold, and double-weasel-down when they flag you on the foul, then...

Quote:
You('re) not contributing much to this conversation.

Yeah. That.

Shadow Lodge

ElyasRavenwood wrote:

Thank you everyone with your thoughts and advice. I have revised my rogue a little bit. What do you all think? thanks.

Race: Dwarf
Abilities: Str: 14, Dex: 14, Con:16,Int: 13, Wis 12, Cha: 10
Hit points: 14
Skills: Acrobatics: +6, Bluff: +4, Climb: +6, Diplomacy: +4, Disable Device: +9, Perception: +6 (+7 Traps), Sense Motive +5, Sleight of Hand +6, Stealth +6, Survival +6
Feats: Toughness
Traits: Observant, Poverty Stricken
Weapons: Dagger, Light Crossbow, Morning Star, Sap, Short Sword, Sling,

Cold Iron battle axe, Alchemical silver short sword,

Ammo: Crossbow Bolts 20, Sling Stones 10

(I'll compare it to my own build previously)

-- The good news is that you can do some damage in melee.

-- The bad news: you're less of a rogue for it: relative to the archery build you're -2 to Perception, Sense Motive, and Survival (which you spent a trait to get class), -2 to will-saves, and -1 to all charisma skills.

Toughness nets you +1hp per level, which is a heck of a lot less than the massive increase in inbound damage you'll take in melee. Your INT is 13, leading me to suspect you intend to take Combat Expertise at 3rd (or 2nd with [talent:combat trick]), meaning two feats down on trying to save bacon in a role, melee fighting, that you did not have to assume. d4+2 sling bullets do the same damage as d8+0 crossbow bolts, but lack range and have no combat feats to help them land and secure sneak-attack.

Whatever your prime stat is (I assume it's not INT or CON, even though the latter is currently highest), it won't be going to an even number to increase bonus at 4th.

Lack of martial weapon proficiency denies you the Dwarven waraxe and longhammer which you are otherwise racially proficient in, and lack of medium or heavy armor proficiency leaves you underprotected in melee.

~ ~ ~

The take-away is that I think you're attempting to do a fighter's job in melee, but without his better weapons and (more importantly) better protection. The classic rebuttal is the melee rogue can take Spring Attack...but that does not well suit a dwarf's short legs, and the build does not appear to be going in that direction anyway.

In order to become poor in melee (as opposed to nonexistent in melee), you've sacrificed the most roguish elements of your rogue: being the Perceptive/Sense Motive champ who alerts the party to danger, securing combat on terms favorable to the party (i.e., they surprise rather than the other way around), and avoiding taxing the divine caster who would rather worry about other things.


Sir Thugsalot wrote:
The take-away is that I think you're attempting to do a fighter's job in melee, but without his better weapons and (more importantly) better protection.

I think you're overstating the dangers here, assuming that the OP's character takes measures to protect himself as levels go up. A mithral breastplate and mithral heavy shield are pretty easy grabs, and in general, with higher DEX and Dodge there's no reason a Dwarven Rogue should have survival issues compared to a typical Fighter. If the OP wants a scrapper (which does seem like a fun and appropriate Dwarf Rogue concept), we can offer advice on how to pull it off.


ElyasRavenwood wrote:

Thank you everyone with your thoughts and advice. I have revised my rogue a little bit.

...
I made a couple of adjustments to the ability scores, and I purchased a cold iron battle axe, and an alchemical silver short sword

Having high Con is nice, but it isn't going to get the job done. There reaches a "you must be this tall" point to have any accuracy in combat. I strongly suggest, as a partial BAB class, that you start with at least 16 Dex.

The alchemical short sword is alright, but it may work against you. The alchemical modification lowers the damage by 1 on any attacks you make with a weapon that deals slashing or piercing damage, but not for blunt weapons. I strongly suggest picking up some kind of Rogue-friendly blunt weapon for alchemical silver.


Sir Thugsalot wrote:
<context preservation clause now in-effect>
Wasum wrote:
Sir Thugsalot wrote:
Wasum wrote:
And if what you understand as perfect conditions (critting every single hit...
Who said anything about getting crits?
Whatever it is you assumed - it doesn't matter. I ha--

*stomp*

If your only hope of winning an argument on the internet is to concoct that someone held a position that they did not actually hold, and double-weasel-down when they flag you on the foul, then...

Quote:
You('re) not contributing much to this conversation.
Yeah. That.

I already explained in detail where I see problems. You didn't reply to this at all but picked one statement (the one about perfect conditions) and added some intransparent proposition which didn't even face my argument (calling out there are conditions where this build makes mediocre damage whithout mentioning what these conditions are. Sure, I didn't make that clear as well but the DPR calculations for regular attacks with and without sneak attack are pretty straight forward and show your build is just not sufficient in this area). My point that made you "stomp" was just that it just doesn't matter on which conditions you deal your damage as my argument above does not depend on what those conditions are.

Now my main point was the ratio of efficiency and spotlight it takes to perform and why I think contributing in a significant way will be close to impossible.

If you can tell me why these concerns are meaningless I'll definitely will admit I was wrong - but at this point I am not at all convinced.

Shadow Lodge

Wasum wrote:
You didn't reply to this at all but picked one statement (the one about perfect conditions) and added som--

*stomp* What you need to understand is that when you try to stuff words into someone's mouth that they did not say, that person is likely to get "picky" and just plain ignore anything else you have to say until you take it back, and that you're just going to have to deal with it until that happens. <and...on to the next>

~ ~ ~

Rosc wrote:
ElyasRavenwood wrote:
Thank you everyone with your thoughts and advice. I have revised my rogue a little bit....
Having high Con is nice, but it isn't going to get the job done. There reaches a "you must be this tall" point to have any accuracy in combat. I strongly suggest, as a partial BAB class, that you start with at least 16 Dex.

It's ideal, but not tremendously necessary. IMO if you can get it to 16 by 4th and then to 18 with a belt at 5th, you're then just as good as the guy with starting 16>17>19 at the same point. (I almost always have my prime stat an odd number at character-creation for this reason.

~ ~ ~

BadBird wrote:
Sir Thugsalot wrote:
The take-away is that I think you're attempting to do a fighter's job in melee, but without his better weapons and (more importantly) better protection.
I think you're overstating the dangers here, assuming that the OP's character takes measures to protect himself as levels go up.
The problem is: can he get that far? ...2nd-thru-4th is when PFS rogues and rangers in leather are likeliest to faceplant. HP is low, and if there's even is a divine caster at the table, he may not be able to channel. (Seen more than a few croak because they were a point or two from neg-CON and couldn't stabilize). Getting up to the point where you can shell out that 4000gp for mithral medium is a very long slog from 1st in PFS. Speaking of which....
Quote:
A mithral breastplate and mithral heavy shield are pretty easy grabs,

BTW, since the trait Armor Expert is non-Core and therefore unavailable, a straight-class rogue who is not proficient in medium armor will eat mithral breastplate's remaining -1 armor-check penalty to his attack-rolls (as well as being -1 to STR and DEX skills). He can avoid the non-proficiency penalty to attack by selecting the 25% pricier Elven Chain, but is then eating a -2 penalty to his STR and DEX skills and is AC-1 relative to the breastplate. Alternatively, he avoids all attack/skill penalties and saves decent coin with mithril chainshirt (for AC-2 behind the breastplate). (Note that, for the same non-proficiency reasons, he cannot employ a shield of any type prior to obtaining a mithral version. Even a crappy wooden buckler means -1 attacks.

-- So, he's either (a) eating rotten penalties, (b) not buying decent armor in a character who isn't a Teflon halfling (and will therefore get his head ripped off in melee), (c) blowing a feat on medium armor proficiency, or (d) have to hold his nose and multiclass and/or (e) back slowly away from melee and consider a ranged role instead.


Sir Thugsalot wrote:
Wasum wrote:
You didn't reply to this at all but picked one statement (the one about perfect conditions) and added som--

*stomp* What you need to understand is that when you try to stuff words into someone's mouth that they did not say, that person is likely to get "picky" and just plain ignore anything else you have to say until you take it back, and that you're just going to have to deal with it until that happens. <and...on to the next>

Actually I didnt want to stuff words in your mouth you didn't say - I just made a wrong assumption and as I considered it as unimportant for the core of the conversation, so I didnt really bother. I'm sorry if this offended you - on the internet this extensional blur of natural language can produce even more misunderstandings so my apologies for the inconvenience. Next time you could just let people know about this as one usually expects constructive participation and therefore respective interpretation on both sides.

I was wrong about mentioning the damage you claimed to do included critical hits, it was just an assumption that followed your statement about "perfect conditions" that wasn't more than a more or less educated guess.

Shadow Lodge

BadBird wrote:
If the OP wants a scrapper (which does seem like a fun and appropriate Dwarf Rogue concept), we can offer advice on how to pull it off.

Step #1. Multiclass. Otherwise armor, durability, and damage will blow playing Core.

Dwarf Core Rogue (multiclassed for melee mwah powah!)
STR:15 (all bumps)
DEX:14
CON+16
INT:12 (15,14,14,14,12,07 array)
WIS+16
CHA-05

traits: Reactionary (INIT+2, Indomitable Faith (will+1)

01 fight1 Dodge, Mobility

...Nearly right out of the gate he's wearing decent armor with a +1 dodge bonus and getting another +4 moving into flanks (and deliberately granting AoOs is something he can plausibly entertain now, whereas the leather-armor build would just get poleaxed between the eyes).

Armor at character creation: scale, which is immediately sold for half and upgraded to non-masterwork breastplate at earliest opportunity. (With a heavy shield and Dodge this yields AC+7 over leather/no-shield, and relative AC+11 moving through threatened zones.)

Main weapon: bardiche.

02 rogue1 SA+1d6
03 rogue2 [evasion][talent:combat trick:Combat Reflexes], Fleet

...Fleet represents +25% movement in a dwarf. Good deal if we're planning on Spring Attack, or just getting around to angle our reach-weapon into a flank. Evasion is winked off while wearing medium armor, but we should have the mithral before opponents start lobbing fireballs.

04 rogu3 SA+2d6, STR>16
05 fight2 [Spring Attack], Power Attack, (buy STR belt then mithral breastplate)
06 rogu4 [uncanny dodge][talent:Trap Spotter]
07 (???) Quick Draw

...And this is the basic multiclass chassis for a very tough dwarf fighter/rogue who is at home in melee. He can decide to go either straight fighter from here, or continue on in rogue.

* one or two automatic Perception checks per round to notice traps
* two attacks of opportunity (three belt upgraded for DEX+2)
* proficient in best core martial melee reach weapon.
* Power Attack and Spring Attack both on-line at BAB4.
* Quick Draw at BAB6 to get iterative shots with a ranged weapon against distant targets after dropping a solitary melee opponent with the first attack.


Quote:
BTW, since the trait Armor Expert is non-Core and therefore unavailable, a straight-class rogue who is not proficient in medium armor will eat mithral breastplate's remaining -1 armor-check penalty to his attack-rolls

Core PFS allows the use of the web enhancement for traits.

Silver Crusade

I think can play a simple core rogue and dont bother so much

Cause he likes Dex and verdatility I offer:

Str 12 Dex 16 Con 14 int 12 wis 14 car 10

Solid and stable. Weapon finesse as feat.

The equipment needs love. Leather armor is very softy you need chainshirt at least (mw or mithral if possible)

Sure a buckler or heavy shield (made with darkwook!) helps you a lot

Ranged toys and be fun with your choice of skills, check the advices in firsts post.

Hope helps you


Sir Thugsalot wrote:
The problem is: can he get that far? ...2nd-thru-4th is when PFS rogues and rangers in leather are likeliest to faceplant. HP is low, and if there's even is a divine caster at the table, he may not be able to channel. (Seen more than a few croak because they were a point or two from neg-CON and couldn't stabilize). Getting up to the point where you can shell out that 4000gp for mithral medium is a very long slog from 1st in PFS.

A masterwork light shield and a chain shirt plus 14DEX and Dodge is stronger than having 12DEX and wearing a breastplate, which is where many martials are going to be early on. Equipment is a progression in early levels. Even assuming that at times AC is a bit lower than a full-plate Fighter, we're talking about statistical margins, not disasters.

HP for a 16CON Rogue is not going to be substantially different than many martials or other frontliners; it may, in fact, be better than some.

Sir Thugsalot wrote:
BTW, since the trait Armor Expert is non-Core and therefore unavailable, a straight-class rogue who is not proficient in medium armor will eat mithral breastplate's remaining -1 armor-check penalty to his attack-rolls...

I'm familiar with how armor check penalty works. PFS Core play includes the Character Traits Web Enhancement document, which means Armor Expert is legal for PFS Core play. Even leaving aside Armor Expert, there's nothing preventing him from taking medium armor proficiency or taking a level of Fighter which grants it free later on, when needed.

Sir Thugsalot wrote:

Step #1. Multiclass. Otherwise armor, durability, and damage will blow playing Core.

Dwarf Core Rogue (multiclassed for melee mwah powah!)

That's very similar to the Fighter1/Rogue build I suggested above. It's something the OP could certainly choose to build into as levels go up.

Shadow Lodge

BadBird wrote:
Sir Thugsalot wrote:
The problem is: can he get that far? ...2nd-thru-4th is when PFS rogues and rangers in leather are likeliest to faceplant. HP is low, and if there's even is a divine caster at the table, he may not be able to channel. (Seen more than a few croak because they were a point or two from neg-CON and couldn't stabilize). Getting up to the point where you can shell out that 4000gp for mithral medium is a very long slog from 1st in PFS.
A masterwork light shield and a chain shirt plus 14DEX and Dodge is stronger than having 12DEX and wearing a breastplate, which is where many martials are going to be early on.
True, but I don't know who was proposing that. (I made comparison to the OP revised build, which was still in leather without Dodge.)
Quote:
HP for a 16CON Rogue is not going to be substantially different than many martials or other frontliners; it may, in fact, be better than some.
Especially since players will likely shy away from barbarians in Core (no Raging Vitality or Scarred Rager). It's good to be a dwarf.
Quote:
PFS Core play includes the Character Traits Web Enhancement document, which means Armor Expert is legal for PFS Core play.
I stand corrected.
Quote:
Even leaving aside Armor Expert, there's nothing preventing him from taking medium armor proficiency or taking a level of Fighter which grants it free later on, when needed.

Of course; but what matters is whether or not the player actually does it. He'll need one of the three, or end up over his head in lousy armor.

IMO the fighter level is best because it saves a feat or saves a trait (Armor Expert or Medium Armor Proficiency), grants a combat feat, as well as providing Survival as a class skill, which the player appears to desire...so it saves a second trait as well.

Quote:
Sir Thugsalot wrote:
Dwarf Core Rogue (multiclassed for melee mwah powah!)[/b]
That's very similar to the Fighter1/Rogue build I suggested above. It's something the OP could certainly choose to build into as levels go up.

Given the non-capstone nature of PFS, the "best" (strongest and most skillful) build is probably along the lines of...

1st-6th: fighter2/rogu4 (as in my most recent build)
7th: fighter3 (BAB6 and qualified for feats requiring it), FEAT(g)(...Lunge?)
8th: fighter4 (grants combat feat on otherwise dead level)
9th: fighter5 [Weapon Training], FEAT(g)(BAB8 as required by Improved Critical)
10th fighter6 [all saves+1], FEAT(c)...BAB9 right on time for Critical Focus

At F6/R4 w/Improved Critical and Critical Focus, the character is a melee powerhouse only BAB-1 off straight fighter, and yet with the maxed Perception and Disable Device of a rogue as well as "decently high" levels in other important skills (Diplomacy, Escape Artist, Acrobatics, etc).

Throughout the fighter levels the PC has had another 1pt/level (assuming Perception and Disable kept maxed) in skills to either sprinkle around or keep a third skill maxed.) He's "only" +2d6 sneak-attack, but such tends to be situational, sneak dice arguably the least useful aspect of the class, and each additional die represents a smaller percentage gain in additional damage than the last (i.e., a second is a 100% sneak-attack gain, the third a 50%, the fourth 33%, etc).

At 11th, a minor quandary appears: with fighter6 in the bag, If the player goes back to rogue, BAB will drop to -2 off best possible, causing the desired melee role to suffer. Rogue 5th and 6th (coasting into retirement at 12th) offer 18 skills points in an INT:12 dwarf, SA+1d6, a Talent, Trap Sense+1, and [all saves+1]. Two more fighter levels preserve BAB, but offer a tepid single feat, Fort+1, and six skill points. (Fighter7's Armor Training advancement is 100% useless to a dwarf in mithral breastplate.)

Solution: Jump ship to Ranger. -- Each level provides our INT:12 dwarf (probably 14 with a headband at this level, but let's keep it simple) 7 skill points to quickly "catch up" rogue skills, advances BAB, auto-success using divine trigger items, bolsters reflex save (helping our slightly languishing Evasion), and occasionally be +2 to cream something.

IMO this is the superior solution to carrying a PC into PFS post-retirement arcs as it results in a MASSIVE wheelbarrow of goodies at the cost of only BAB-1. Ranger, in fact, front-loads quite nicely in builds not in a hurry to gain weapon-specialization (next post).

Shadow Lodge

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Core Dwarf All-Star Mutt Rogue

STR:15 (all bumps)
DEX:14
CON+16 (+3 baby, booyah!)
INT:12 (15,14,14,14,12,07 array)
WIS+16 (+3 baby, booyah!)
CHA-05 (no, do not raise this)

traits: Reactionary (INIT+2, Indomitable Faith (will+1)

CL Ba HP Sk FT RF WI (includes dwarf's +2 "Hardy" bonus)
01 01 13 07 07 06 06 Ranger1 [Track][Favored Enemy], Dodge
02 01 21 16 07 08 06 rogue1 [Trapfinding][SA+1d6]

...Those are some pretty damned good saves for a baby-level martial.
Ranger permits the PC to exploit his already-purchased wand of CLW without having to pester an ally or worry about rolling a 1 on his UMD check. PFS mods also occasionally benefit from having Track, so there are plenty of reasons for Ranger at 1st in our mutt.

...Dodge seems a lame feat choice at 1st, but think about it: How often is your character going to be targeted as a melee build? Half-a-dozen to twenty times per encounter? -- It's not a flashy feat, but it's there doing its job protecting your heinie through your entire career, and is called into service each and every time your AC is attacked, and since a rogue career is expected, Dodge will always be "active" via Uncanny Dodge.

Melee weapons: bardiche (AKA, kill them with AoOs before they can reach you.), morning star, kukri, sap

Ranged weapons: sling, and a couple javelins. -- Do [i]not start in on a MW composite longbow at baby levels in Core if you're not taking Rapid Shot!!! The Adaptive enhancement is not available, meaning purchase of an expensive magical bow should wait until strength is bumped at 4th and raised again with belt at 5th). Few opponents are so far away that javelins won't do to the job at lower levels when you've only one attack per round anyway.

CL Ba HP Sk FT RF WI
03 02 30 19 08 08 06 fighter1 [feat:Mobility], Fleet
04 03 39 22 09 08 06 fighter2 [feat:Quick Draw), STR>16

...We have a lot of different weapons; let's use them all efficiently.

05 04 48 25 09 09 07 fighter3 [armor training], Deadly Aim

...Armor Training eliminates the lingering -1 armor check penalty of soon-to-be or already-purchased mithral breastplate.
...skills: keep Acrobatics, Disable, and Perception maxed during these fighter levels while we're front-loading extra hitpoints and feats.

CL Ba HP Sk FT RF WI
06 05 56 34 09 10 07 rogue2 [evasion][talent:Trap Spotter]

...secondary skills have languished long enough, and Evasion gained just in time for Tier6 enemy fireballs. Dwarven Stonecunning and rogue Trap Spotter grant two automatic Perception checks to notice traps in many situations.

07 06 65 41 10 11 07 ranger2 [style:archery(Rapid Shot)], Weapon Focus:Kukri

...drastic increase in offensive power with two melee and/or three ranged attacks available at BAB6. (This is why we took Quick Draw: kill the thing next to you then swap to ranged to finish out your full-attack.) Ranger's ability to ignore prerequisites serves splendidly here (archery targets tend to remain annoying outside Point Blank Shot range, and we don't have Precise Shot anyway), and by 7th the PC will have a STR+2 belt for an 18, so good time to plunk down gold on a nice STR+4 bow.

Weapons: STR+4 composite longbow, assorted special-materials kukris of MW and +1 enhancement. (Using bardiche less and less now, only when we need to move, or versus reach-monsters.)

CL Ba HP Sk FT RF WI
08 07 73 50 11 11 08 rogue3 [trap sense+1[SA+2d6], STR>17
09 08 81 59 11 12 08 rogue4 [uncanny dodge][combat trick:Two Weapon Fighting], Improved Critical:kukri, (upgrade belt: DEX+2)
10 09 90 61 12 12 08 fighter4 [feat:Critical Focus][retrain:Mobility>>>Power Attack]
11 10 99 64 12 12 08 fighter5 [weapon training:light blades]
12 11 108 67 13 13 09 fighter6 [FEAT(c)], STR>18

...the nice thing about being pounced is that the enemy is next to you awaiting your full-attack while it's suffering AC-2 from charging. Make it pay horribly.

13+ Ranger3+ (PFS post-retirement arcs & approved adventure paths)

Silver Crusade

Again Thank you all for your thoughts and advice.

I would like to make a more skill focused rogue and I find the idea of a Melee combat focused rogue to be unappealing. I felt I had to sacrifice some of the things I was interested in, such as the finding and removing of traps....and the social skills, not that the Dwarf is very gregarious, to improve the character's melee combat effectiveness.

However as you (other posters on the thread) have kindly pointed out my character must be able to make some sort of contribution during combat. Thank you for suggesting a ranged combat focus. Also thank you for suggesting other Ability score allotments.

core PFS rogue

:

Level 1 (He has only played The Begger's Pearl)
Race: Dwarf
Abilities: Str: 12, Dex: 16, Con: 14,Int:12, Wis 14, Cha: 10
Skills: Acrobatics: +7, Appraise: +5, Climb: +5, Diplomacy: +4, Disable Device: +10, Perception: +7 (+8 Traps), Sense Motive +6, Sleight of Hand +7, Stealth +7, Survival +7
Feats: Point Blank Shot,
Traits: Observant, Poverty Stricken
Weapons: Dagger, Light Crossbow, Morning Star, Sap, Short Sword, Sling,
Ammo: Crossbow Bolts 20, Sling Stones 10

Cold Iron Crossbow Bolts 50
Alchemical Silver Crossbow Bolts 50

Armor: Leather Armor
Gear: Alchemist fire X5, Backpack,Bedroll,Belt pouch, Caltrops, Chalk, Crowbar,Flint and Steel, Grappling hook, hammer,Mess kit, Mirror, Pickpocket outfit, Piton, Pot, Rope, Soap, Thieves Tools Masterwork, Torch, Trail Rations X5, Water skin.

Cash: 260gp

Magic: Wand of Cure Light Wounds ( Spent 2 Prestige Points for it)

Progression:
Skills: 2nd level put 1 rank in Bluff, Escape Artist,Craft: Locksmith, Knowledge Local, swim, and 1 rank in Acrobatics,Diplomacy, Disable Device, Perception, Stealth. 3rd level and beyond: put 1 rank in: Acrobatics, Appraise, Climb, Diplomacy, Disable Device, Perception, Sense Motive, Sleight of Hand, Stealth, Survival
Feats: 3rd level: precise shot, 5th level: rapid reload, 7th level: Rapid shot
Rogue Talents: 2nd level: Trap Spotter,4th level: Quick Disable,6th level: Fast Stealth

I guess my basic idea for a back story, would be that my character was a locksmith before serving in the military of his holdfast. He was trained as a scout. After his military service he joined the Pathfinder society to keep himself occupied.


The ranged combat focus would seem to allow me to have some combat effectiveness and still keep my character's skills up

What do you all think of this current iteration of character crafting?

I am sure there are better choices.

What do you all think?

For example for traits:

I have chosen for my character:
Poverty Stricken to give my character class access to Survival.
Observant: If my character is looking for traps, then Perception seems pretty important.

Would say Armor Expert and Reactionary be better?

How about the my planned progression with skills feats and rogue talents?

Thank you


You already have perception as a class skill, so I think both armor expert, and reactionary would be better than a +1 to perception.
Armor expert would let you use a mithral breastplate without proficiency or penalty. But if you're staying at range, then the extra AC wouldn't be so necessary. So I think reactionary would be more useful in that case.


If shooting with a simple light crossbow, one good sneak attack shot will generally do more than firing multiple shots with Rapid Shot. You might want to consider working towards the Shot on the Run feat, which lets you move->shoot->move in one round, meaning you have continuous opportunities to use stealth between shots by moving in and out of cover or darkness while shooting.

I would put Fast Stealth before Quick Disable. You might consider replacing Quick Disable with Combat Trick as well, to bring your build together more quickly.

Personally, for a Dwarf Rogue I really like the idea of a build using Shot on the Run with hurled spears, while also being able to fight in melee with a spear. But it doesn't sound like you're interested in that much of a fighting focus.

Anyhow, keep in mind the option of taking a level of Fighter or of taking a combat feat with Combat Trick. Extra feats are a big deal when you're trying to bring a build together. Because of the Base Attack Bonus and the free feat, one level of Fighter at level 5 would mean you could pick up Mobility and Shot on the Run by level 5, for example. Multiclassing might seem a bit complicated at first, but it's really pretty simple, especially with a level of Fighter. Character-wise, it just represents a Dwarf Rogue getting a bit tougher and more skilled in martial things from his experience in combat.

Shadow Lodge

BadBird wrote:
I would put Fast Stealth before Quick Disable...

I would put everything before it. -- The last time I played a rogue in PFS, not once was I required to disable a trap while already in combat.

~ ~ ~
ElyasRavenwood wrote:

Traits: Observant, Poverty Stricken...

...What do you all think? For example for traits:

<wheel in 18-pounder on squeaky wooden wheels><canister shot?><yes,please>

KA-BOOM!

-- That's what I think of those two. But they're dead now, so let's move on.

Quote:
Would say Armor Expert and Reactionary be better?

*Yes*! (especially because I suggested them. ;-) <rodney dangerfield><I don't get no respect at all; none I tell yeh></dangerfield>

Armor Expert gets rid of that last, lingering rotten point of armor-check penalty of mithral breastplate (read: the GREAT armor than you're eyeballing down the road) that will nerf your attacks AND your skills *if* you stay a straight-classed rogue (who is not proficient in medium armor, and will therefore eat the penalty to attacks).

Quote:
I find the idea of a Melee combat focused rogue to be unappealing. I felt I had to sacrifice some of the things I was interested in, such as the finding and removing of traps....

When melee finds you appealing (rather than the other way around), you still need a plan. Shooting things in AC+2 leather armor is a great plan...until suddenly melee surrounds you and eagerly desires taking AoOs when you try firing your sling again.

Finding and removing traps requires exactly two skills: Perception and Disable Device. You do not need 9 skills maxed every level to succeed in this game. (Some make do with only one, though I wouldn't recommend that extreme either.)

Quote:
Acrobatics: +7, Appraise: +5, Climb: +5, Diplomacy: +4, Disable Device: +10, Perception: +7 (+8 Traps), Sense Motive +6, Sleight of Hand +7, Stealth +7, Survival +7

Things you need: Acrobatics (a lot, because it's how you tumble), Perception, Stealth, Disable -- that's the four core skills you need as a rogue. I will add two more that haven't occurred to you: Escape Artist (which is how you wriggle out of grapples, which you will need to do), and Use Magic Device (one of the best things about being a rogue). Appraise? Let the arcanists handle it (a single point will do for you). Sleight of Hand...unless you're designing a rogue to exploit this as a gimmick in combat, PFS rogues have little use for this. Survival: barbarians, rangers, druids, and other outdoorsy types will be all over this; you don't need more than a point or two...or none at all. (inclement weather is the sort of thing generally solved with money.)

~ ~ ~

Brief aside: what did they throw against you in an intro mod that, by the end of it, panicked a 1st-level PC into sinking a pile of very tight coin on 50 bolts apiece of cold-iron and alky silver? Demonic werewolves? ...maybe Core is rougher that we thought. Anyway....
Unbuy that stuff. (You'll be no more than a tenth of the way through either pile before the crossbow is abandoned for better weapons.)

Shadow Lodge

Quote:

Race: Dwarf ...Abilities: Str: 12, Dex: 16, Con: 14,Int:12, Wis 14, Cha: 10

I.e., pre-racial 16,12,12,12,12,12 array.

Might I suggest 15,14,14,14,12,07 or 15,14,12,12,12,12, instead? That 16 is really pricey point-buy wise, and is better than a 15 only between 1st and 4th, which are the junky levels.

= = = = =

Core Dwarf Archer Rogue, Take #2

STR:14
DEX:15
CON+14 (15,14,12,12,12,12 array)
INT:12
WIS+14
CHA-10

traits: Armor Expert, Indomitable Faith

CL Ba HP Sk FT RF WI (includes dwarf's +2 "Hardy" bonus)
01 01 12 07 06 06 05 ranger1 [Track][Favored Enemy:human], Point Blank Shot
02 01 19 16 06 08 05 rogue1 [SA+1d6]
03 02 27 23 07 09 05 ranger2 [Rapid Shot], Precise Shot

-- ranger2/rogue1 start versus straight rogue3:

* saves are +2/+2/-1 @ 3rd
* -1 sneak dice and -4 total skill points; evasion delayed
* proficient in all martial weapons, including bows
* proficient in medium armor
* can follow (Track) clues (useful for rogues, no?)
* have the "three basic archery feats" by 3rd level
* two attacks per round instead of one
* ability to cast divine spells off scrolls and wands without UMD

-- Put 50gp into scale armor, and 600gp into a MW STR+2 composite longbow (and do that right now).

CL Ba HP Sk FT RF WI
04 03 34 32 07 10 05 rogue2 [Trapfinding][Evasion], DEX>16

-- Upon leveling at 4th, dump the scale and buy Mithral breastplate for 4200gp. (And Evasion works.)

05 04 42 41 08 10 06 rogue3 [SA+2d6], Quick Draw

-- Buy a MW cold-iron bardiche and an adamantine warhammer. (Since the very cool archery feat Improved Snap Shot is denied to Core archers, they need a mechanism for dealing with turkeys getting up in their grill; this is what the polearm is for. ...Improved Snap Shot also takes forever to get in a rogue anyway.)

06 05 49 50 07 11 05 rogue4 [uncanny dodge][talent:combat trick:Combat Reflexes]

-- Combat Reflexes amplifies the polearm. Tactics: Fire bow until melee looms, then Quick Draw bardiche to enable AoOs on enemy turns. (You've probably been doing this already before now.)

07 ...this is a "Decisions, decisions" level. If rogue5, then BAB remains 5 at 7th (meaning it'll be two more level, or 9th, before you can pick up BAB6-required feats.

CL Ba HP Sk FT RF WI
07 06 57 53 09 11 06 fighter1 [feat:Manyshot], Vital Strike

-- Nice increase in full-attack and standard-action damage.

08 (...back to rogue full-time.)

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