Rogues, now with Hexes


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So, the Sylvan Trickster archetype takes away trapfinding, uncanny dodge, and improved uncanny dodge for Wild Empathy, Resist Nature's Lure, and damage reduction/cold iron. In addition, it lets you take WITCH HEXES in place of rogue talents.

That is ... amazing. Especially on top of the Unchained Rogue. What do you think are the most beneficial hexes (hex, major, and grand hexes) to pick up to boost the overly effectiveness of the Rogue chassis? Flight would be an obvious one ... Maybe something could be worked out with Prehensile hair (get dex to damage?).

Ooh, the possibilities...


An archetype that may see you taking the extra rogue talent feat. Wow.

Hex strike with sneak attack could let you deal a reasonable amount of damage and also give a chance of a slumber-knockout. Obviously if you just want them KO'd then the slumber hex alone is better, but if you're not sure of their HP or will save then attacking both isn't bad. Or you could use hex strike with misfortune to set up a second attack (TWF or BAB 6+) using poison or something.

Nails and maybe prehensile hair is a good start on a set of natural attacks. Neither does much base damage but you do have full sneak attack after all.

I don't think you qualify for accursed hex; you might want the major magic: hex vulnerability talent at some point.


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Hex Strike opens up a lot of amazing possibilities for unarmed builds with this archetype. For instance, if you grab slumber hex and Enforcer you could make an unarmed strike for nonlethal damage, get a free action Intimidate check to demoralize, then force the target to save against your slumber hex with a -2 penalty.

At higher levels, you can start sneak attacking with bleeding attack, Flensing Strike, Enforcer, and a swift action ice tomb. Your target will be shaken and sickened by your attack, then must save against your ice tomb hex with a -4 penalty. If they fail, they become paralyzed, fall unconscious, and start bleeding to death. Now that's a sneak attack.

For a much less significant investment, and without even needing to pump their Intelligence score, a meelee-focused rogue could throw out a swift action evil eye on the first hit in a flanking full-attack, lowering the target's AC with a no-save penalty that stacks with debilitating injury to absolutely demolish their defenses. When an enemy is working with -10 AC, suddenly those iteratives, off-hands, and secondary natural weapons start to look a lot more appealing.


Wow that is nice... probably won't be allowed in pfs :p


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ekibus wrote:
Wow that is nice... probably won't be allowed in pfs :p

No, no, I'm sure they'll allow it. The hexes will just be usable once per day, with an effective witch level of zero.

Scarab Sages

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My guess would be it might go the way of the Eldritch Scoundrel. Legal, but not for Unchained Rogue. I hope not, though. It looks like it could make for some interesting builds, but going back to chained Rogue just isn’t going to be worth it.


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DeathlessOne wrote:

So, the Sylvan Trickster archetype takes away trapfinding, uncanny dodge, and improved uncanny dodge for Wild Empathy, Resist Nature's Lure, and damage reduction/cold iron. In addition, it lets you take WITCH HEXES in place of rogue talents.

That is ... amazing. Especially on top of the Unchained Rogue. What do you think are the most beneficial hexes (hex, major, and grand hexes) to pick up to boost the overly effectiveness of the Rogue chassis? Flight would be an obvious one ... Maybe something could be worked out with Prehensile hair (get dex to damage?).

Ooh, the possibilities...

It sounds nice on paper, but it doesn't work that well since it lacks text stating you treat rogue levels as witch levels for the option to select hexes (meaning any hexes that are level-gated aren't available for selection), or how said hexes scale with level. So, while you might be able to select hexes, they most certainly won't scale. (Meaning Flight Hex will only ever let you have Feather Fall, and never any actual flying, as one example).

Whether that's intentional or not, I don't know. Since it's from Ultimate Wilderness (which is just a lackluster product that's been rushed and has so many options that just outright do nothing due to being incomplete as a whole), it's possible that yes, that's all there is to it, and as such, the archetype isn't as great as it could be. (It's still nice, since you get free DR and nature-themed utility options, but I don't know if it's worth giving up Trapfinding for.)

Of course, I actually took something like this a step further, and made a full-on Rogue/Witch Hybrid class. In short, it's a 3/4 BAB class with 2/3 spellcasting (using the Witch spell list), access to a familiar and lesser Patron, reduced sneak attack progression, talents that allow hexes to be selected in addition to rogue options (though they get a free hex at 1st level), added Hex support in the form of talents, as well as a unique mechanic, Hexstrike, the ability to attack an enemy and affect them with hexes at the same time (using the same action, of course), getting better as they gain levels.

If your GM is open for a "reflavoring," I'd consider the above class a try.


Hex Strike requires the Hex class feature, which the archetype doesn't actually give. You'd have to dip a level of Witch or something.

Scarab Sages

Didn't this hex stuff come up with the Hexcrafter, and the results were that if an archetype gives you something then it scales off of that class, not the class levels the thing is originally from?


CupcakeNautilus wrote:
Hex Strike requires the Hex class feature, which the archetype doesn't actually give. You'd have to dip a level of Witch or something.

I don't know how you got that interpretation, since it gets a Hex at 1st level, has the word "Hex" listed under the Special section of the table, and says its level stacks with other classes that get Hexes.

Regardless, I applied a simple clause that should remove that supposed issue.

Scarab Sages

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I don't know about Hexcrafter, but that ended up not being the case with Magus and Arcane Deed.

I'd assume that it is the case here, though, as it would be really underpowered/non-functional otherwise.


Angel Hunter D wrote:
Didn't this hex stuff come up with the Hexcrafter, and the results were that if an archetype gives you something then it scales off of that class, not the class levels the thing is originally from?
Hex Magus wrote:
At 4th level, the hexcrafter magus gains access to a small number of witch's hexes. The hexcrafter magus picks one hex from the witch's hex class feature. He gains the benefit of or uses that hex as if he were a witch of a level equal to his magus level. This feature replaces spell recall.

The Hexcrafter has a clause (which I bolded) that says what you describe.

That text is not present in the Fey Trickster archetype, which means that, as written, Fey Tricksters do not have any levels for selecting or benefitting from hexes. This means any level-based effects (such as Flight hex, Heal hex, Evil Eye, and so on) aren't applicable, and only the base effects are what the Fey Trickster can utilize.

Grand Lodge

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Could be interesting for building a natural attacks based rogue with Nails and Prehensile Hair.


Ah, hex strike requires the actual class feature. I must look stuff like that up before suggesting it.

With that and the lack of a witch level-equivalent it's a lot less attractive. Slumber is still great to have but you can't do anything special with it. If you're going to be spending some rounds just using slumber then you don't need sneak attack so much - maybe a carnivalist rogue? I think it'd stack. You send them to sleep, your pet coup de graces them.

BTW, fey trickster is the mesmerist with magical disguise & hunter spells, sylvan trickster is the rogue with hexes.


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Hex Strike does require you to dip a level in witch, but that might be a price worth paying for a dedicated build. It doesn't set you back too far on your basic class abilities, and you are getting a familiar and free wand use out of the deal.

As for the lack of an effective witch level, if taken literally it would absolutely destroy the value of the archetype. Forget slumber - any hex with a level-based duration would last for literally zero time, and any hex with a level-based DC would rapidly become useless anyway. I wish I could say I thought there was no way we'd get that sort of ruling, but that's pretty much exactly what happened with arcane deed.

Shadow Lodge

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Sounds like yet another error for the book.


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Dragonborn3 wrote:
Sounds like yet another error for the book.

Do you think anyone actually read the book before they published?


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ShroudedInLight wrote:
Dragonborn3 wrote:
Sounds like yet another error for the book.
Do you think anyone actually read the book before they published?

I think Pazio's policy of "use common sense readings to interpret rules, unless common sense says things we don't like then it is nit picky rules lawyering ahoy" is biting them (and us) in the ass.

It would be very simple to just say "in the absence of text to the contrary, level references in a class feature refer to the level of the class/archetype/etc that gives the feature, so archetypes that nick abilities from other classes automatically have those abilities scale". But that would mean that the magus and some other classes can pinch Swashbuckler's damage bonus or something and make the Swash even more worthless AND WE CANNOT HAVE THAT NOW CAN WE. Hence we are now stuck in this demented situation where a stolen class feature's level is completely undefined unless the writers remember to put in a bunch of extra boilerplate (and naturally, they frequently do not).


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This really seems like something that needs a FAQ response.


Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
CupcakeNautilus wrote:
Hex Strike requires the Hex class feature, which the archetype doesn't actually give. You'd have to dip a level of Witch or something.

I don't know how you got that interpretation, since it gets a Hex at 1st level, has the word "Hex" listed under the Special section of the table, and says its level stacks with other classes that get Hexes.

Regardless, I applied a simple clause that should remove that supposed issue.

It has the "Fey Tricks" class feature, which allows the Rogue to take hexes. As far as feats that require a class feature are concerned, thats different than having a class feature named "Hex".


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CupcakeNautilus wrote:
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
CupcakeNautilus wrote:
Hex Strike requires the Hex class feature, which the archetype doesn't actually give. You'd have to dip a level of Witch or something.

I don't know how you got that interpretation, since it gets a Hex at 1st level, has the word "Hex" listed under the Special section of the table, and says its level stacks with other classes that get Hexes.

Regardless, I applied a simple clause that should remove that supposed issue.

It has the "Fey Tricks" class feature, which allows the Rogue to take hexes. As far as feats that require a class feature are concerned, thats different than having a class feature named "Hex".

Well... druids and rangers can take feats that have "animal companion class feature" as a prereq, even though neither has a feature named that---druids have a "nature bond" feature, rangers have a "hunter's bond" feature, both of which can provide animal companions (or not). So it's not clear to me that a "fey tricks" feature that provides hexes won't satisfy a "hex class feature" feat prereq similarly.


Is the "duck" SKR quote still relevant, or has it been deemed a now expired relic of obsolete policy?


Source of 'duck' quote explaining why Life Oracles who can channel energy count as having the Channel Energy class feature


Fair enough. I guess it would depend on how strict your GM is on going exactly by the text.


CupcakeNautilus wrote:
Fair enough. I guess it would depend on how strict your GM is on going exactly by the text.

Personally, I'd never play with a GM that is that strict on the rules text. Fun > RAW. I am here to play a game, not just a rules and tactics simulator.


I'm kinda myeh. You give up Trapfinding and Uncanny Dodge, a thing which can keep you from being shredded by a pounce monster that goes first (because you don't lose dex bonus to AC). So basically the "rogue" part of your rogue takes a noticeable hit.

Then, hexes are Int-based, whereas part of the appeal of rogue is being able to get a ton of class skills and the points for them without being particularly (or at all) bright. The addition of hex Int requirements makes the character MAD.

The cold-iron DR is a strong latent attraction.


Slim Jim wrote:
I'm kinda myeh. You give up Trapfinding and Uncanny Dodge, a thing which can keep you from being shredded by a pounce monster that goes first (because you don't lose dex bonus to AC). So basically the "rogue" part of your rogue takes a noticeable hit.

Unless the pouncing creature also has sneak attack, you won't be in any more danger than anyone else in the party. Without evasion, you can freely wear heavier armor if you have to proficiency. Trapfinding only gives you half a level boost to disable device/perception with traps, and allows you to disable magical traps. You can still disable mundane traps, and let the spellcasters worry about dispel magic.

Quote:
Then, hexes are Int-based, whereas part of the appeal of rogue is being able to get a ton of class skills and the points for them without being particularly (or at all) bright. The addition of hex Int requirements makes the character MAD.

Dex and Int? Followed shortly after by Con? Sounds like a typical rogue to me. Don't focus on INT as much as a caster, and take Ability Focus to pump the DC's of your hexes individually.

Quote:
The cold-iron DR is a strong latent attraction.

Agreed.

Hmm, Underground Chemist, Unchained Rogue, and Sylvan Trickster seem to be a very nice combo.... With VMC Alchemist. Make some good use of that Int, boost dex with mutagen at higher level (minus wisdom), and ... MMMmmhhh... Animal Skin major hex for Dire Tiger. P-p-p-p-pouncing sneak attack.


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Slim Jim wrote:
Then, hexes are Int-based, whereas part of the appeal of rogue is being able to get a ton of class skills and the points for them without being particularly (or at all) bright. The addition of hex Int requirements makes the character MAD.

You know, I'm inclined to disagree. I've found that one of the most disappointing things about the basic rogue class is that, while there's an instinctual desire to make a "clever scout" or "cunning thief" with a high Intelligence score, there's very little mechanical benefit to back that up. So when archetypes like sylvan trickster or eldritch scoundrel let you use that stat for fun and useful things, I see it as something to be celebrated, from a thematic standpoint even if not a mechanical one.

And with that said, there are plenty of nice hex options that don't require a good Int score in the slightest. You don't need intelligence to use aura of purity, disguise, feral speech, flight, fortune (+ cackle), healing, nails, swamp hag, tongues, or ward - or even for prehensile hair when you've got class abilities that make it Dex-based anyway. Evil eye, for that matter, works just fine with a terrible Int score so long as you're okay with it just lasting one round plus cackling.


DeathlessOne wrote:
Slim Jim wrote:
I'm kinda myeh. You give up Trapfinding and Uncanny Dodge, a thing which can keep you from being shredded by a pounce monster that goes first (because you don't lose dex bonus to AC). So basically the "rogue" part of your rogue takes a noticeable hit.
Unless the pouncing creature also has sneak attack, you won't be in any more danger than anyone else in the party.

Yes you are, because you're going to EAT A LOT OF DAMAGE when your Dex bonus to AC (usually a good half of a rogue's bonus) is winked off while flat-footed (as it very well may be if you gave up Uncanny Dodge). Last I checked, bite/slam/claw/claw/rend plus a blown poison save still ruin a rogue's day.

It's just one of those defensive abilities that you don't notice until you're suddenly killed because you didn't have it.

Quote:
Without evasion, you can freely wear heavier armor if you have to proficiency
Sylvan Trickster doesn't give up Evasion, and doesn't grant heavier armor proficiencies.
Quote:
Trapfinding only gives you half a level boost to disable device/perception with traps, and allows you to disable magical traps.
Well, those are the worst kinds, and their percentage of total traps encountered steadily rises as you level.
Quote:
You can still disable mundane traps, and let the spellcasters worry about dispel magic.
If you run into four traps in the same room, the wizard is going to be annoyed if he has to do all the work. Particularly if you didn't let him know ahead of time that your rogue character can't rogue. He probably doesn't have that many 3rd-level slots reserved for Dispel, or more than a few PoP3s.
Quote:
Quote:
Then, hexes are Int-based, whereas part of the appeal of rogue is being able to get a ton of class skills and the points for them without being particularly (or at all) bright. The addition of hex Int requirements makes the character MAD.
Dex and Int? Followed shortly after by Con? Sounds like a typical rogue to me.

The only rogues built (as opposed to rolled) with an Int higher than 12 are those taking Combat Expertise (and who for some reason wouldn't rather have the much more versatile Dirty Fighting instead). The tenth-most important skill isn't important enough to waste build points on. (And if it is, you're better off just chucking 4k at a headband.)


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Slim Jim wrote:
***snip***

You know, looking at the worst case scenarios, and making them seem like something that is going to happen often, doesn't really do anything for me. You plan for the worst, of course, and then actually play the game and let the chips fall where they may. A pounce attack like that? Still going to mess up a tanky character too. Odds are, the pouncer is not going to have a bite, slam, two claws, and rend, nor are they likely to hit with all of them. And it is fairly rare that something goes before a rogue, and pouncing is unlikely given the limited actions available in a surprise round.

I'm not sure what kind of rogues YOU see entering play, but my experiences with them are substantially different than your own, apparently. Maybe because most players I know look at the guides, pick up a tip or two, and then make whatever they want, rather than cookie-cutter builds. I'm not knocking the play style, it works for some people. Losing uncanny dodge, and the improved version, is not as bad as you are making it out to be.


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Yeah, uncanny dodge is being overrated here. If Barbarians are told to get rid of it because it's a lame ability, I think that similarly applies to a Rogue, who needs a lot more help with their features and playability than a Barbarian does.


While I agree uncanny dodge is being overrated here, it's alwys gonna be better for a rogue than a barbarian due to stat priorities.

Also just pray to Torag for the Dwarf father's sake if you relly need that dex to AC all the time.

Liberty's Edge

Int's easy enough to buy up if actually advantageous on a Rogue. For example, a 15 point-buy builds for an Unchained Rogue:

15 PB: Str 7 Dex 18 Con 13 Int 18 Wis 10 Cha 7 (Dual Talent Human). Toss on Student of Philosophy and Indomitable Faith for Traits and TWF as a Feat and you're good to go.

Yeah, that's pretty optimized, and will be crappy at damage until 3rd...but it has Slumber from 2nd. And at 20 point-buy you could have Str 10, Con 12, Wis 12. It's a very workable character (assuming the 'counts as Witch levels' thing is added).


Yeah, as far as builds go, I see building a character for this archetype as similar to building an Eldritch Scoundrel. Both archetypes seem pretty awesome, function off INT, and work well with the Unchained Rogue. One gets spells but weaker SAD; the other gets hexes.

If you really wanted to focus on INT, you could possibly take VMC Magus for Prescient Attacks or whatever it's called, adding INT to your attack rolls. I don't think that's necessary, however. DEX/INT is a perfectly acceptable stat split to focus on.

In 15 point buy games, a build like Deadman's is great. In 20 or 25 point buy, you'll have plenty of points for... whatever role you want to fill, really.

Race-wise, a standard Tiefling would be amazing here. An elf would be really good if you're limited to core races, but the -2 CON would hurt substantially - but it's workable with 20 point buy. Human, half-elf, and half-orc make good third choices. I normally like dwarf for tough rogues, but with no bonus to DEX or INT, they're right out. Halfling doesn't add much to this, since you could always turn small sized with Beast Shape via your Animal Skin hex.

As an aside: trapfinding is great, but you don't actually need it to FIND magical traps. You only need it to disarm them. Your rogue could find a trap, then tell Mr. Barbarian to Sunder it, or tell Mr. Wizard to cast dispel magic from a distance.


Someone pointed this out on Reddit, but a 2-level dip into Ashiftah Witch helps this build a LOT, and makes it so that the unclear wording on whether you qualify for hex feats doesn't matter. Taking Major Magic for Vanish is already considered a good move, so being able to cast it essentially at will is pretty great too. Something to consider, at least.

Scarab Sages

alexgndl wrote:
Someone pointed this out on Reddit, but a 2-level dip into Ashiftah Witch helps this build a LOT, and makes it so that the unclear wording on whether you qualify for hex feats doesn't matter. Taking Major Magic for Vanish is already considered a good move, so being able to cast it essentially at will is pretty great too. Something to consider, at least.

Yeah, that looks like a nice combo. Get Hex Strike so you deliver a hex with your attack. Attack for Hex+Sneak Attack, Move action vanish, 5-foot step. Repeat the next round.

With regards to Int on a Rogue... Keep in mind that a Feint build is going to want at least a little Int. Yes, Dirty Fighting is better than Combat Expertise in a lot of cases, but it does not count as Combat Expertise for Improved Feint, because Feint is not a combat maneuver. Throwing trans in to shift some social skills to Int, you could get away with just Dex, Con, and Int. Not any more MAD than a Magus.

It's the low saves for a Rogue that really creat a situation where you're MAD, because you'll want some kind of WIS bonus, probably, to keep your Will save from being completely terrible.


Ferious Thune wrote:
It's the low saves for a Rogue that really creat a situation where you're MAD, because you'll want some kind of WIS bonus, probably, to keep your Will save from being completely terrible.

Which would be helped a lot by a dip into witch and a hedgehog familiar.


DeathlessOne wrote:
Slim Jim wrote:
***snip***
You know, looking at the worst case scenarios, and making them seem like something that is going to happen often

The entire sticky wicket of a "worse case scenario" is that it does NOT have to happen often. Usually, it only has to happen once.

I consider archetypes that forfeit "boring" defensive class abilities to be traps: The player sallies forth into a dangerous world, oblivious and care-free enjoying his altered class that he thinks is 5% or 10% better, right up until the time his super high INIT roll doesn't beat the monster, and then he's screwed when it draws & quarters him.

And only then, when he's calculating which equipment he'll be selling in PFS to pay for that Raise Dead ("Why does this keep happening to me?"), he'll begin to regret the decision to forfeit Uncanny Dodge in a rogue.

And here's the funny thing: Unchained doesn't help at all there! Your unchained rogue will be just as dead as a doornail eating a hundred points of raw damage while flat-footed as he will being a chained archetype.

But Paizo gotta sell, so here's some more archetypes (and we know how lawful-evil those sneaky writers are, always trying to sell you a two-legged stool).

Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Yeah, uncanny dodge is being overrated here. If Barbarians are told to get rid of it because it's a lame ability, I think that similarly applies to a Rogue, who needs a lot more help with their features and playability than a Barbarian does.

Barbarians are a d12 class that rages for even more hitpoints, and are pretty much designed to have dumped-AC out-of-box and deal with it anyway. For most of their careers, most are only getting +2 or +3 from dex, -1 if they're Enlarged. Therefore, the barbarian can easily toss Uncanny because they rely on AC for defense the least of the martial classes.

In contrast, rogues design to not get hit more so than any of the classes except arcane straight-casters. Your typical Dex-monkey with Dodge can easily be looking at +7 in "perishable" bonuses to AC and CMD by 4th or 5th. Kiss that bonus goodbye, and they're going to get hit, and when they get hit, they're typically in trouble fast (especially if they're the iconic elf with dumped Con). Solution? Never be a flat-footed rogue.


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Honestly I play a Dex based inquisitor archer at 10th level it never came up. Most groups i play with, the person with the most hp/ac is walking in first. Honestly I hope this class will work seems like out could be fun. If you are that scared of losing uncanny than pick up a wand of heightened awareness, improved initiative, reactionary and dex you could have +14 init


Slim Jim wrote:
***snip***

.... Sigh... Ok, fine. You obviously consider uncanny dodge to be more important than hexes, so let's strike a compromise? Find a way to take Wary Eye trait and make sure your perception is high and you can make relatively reliable wisdom checks, and you won't have to worry about the pouncer. This way, in the rare (but possible event) of a rogue getting caught flat footed by an ambush pouncer that should probably target the more squishy caster, you have an alternative.

Yes?

Scarab Sages

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Worship Torag, take Divine Strategist


Ferious Thune wrote:
Worship Torag, take Divine Strategist

Or this, or both this and Wary Eye.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Mmm… twelve skill ranks per level, and fourteen if you're using background skills.


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I love this archetype. Anything that gives a more magic feel to the Rogue is a win in my book! I still have never played a Rogue in Pathfinder (which is odd because it's one of my old standbys), but when I do it'll either be this or an Eldritch Scoundrel.


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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Angel Hunter D wrote:
Didn't this hex stuff come up with the Hexcrafter, and the results were that if an archetype gives you something then it scales off of that class, not the class levels the thing is originally from?
Hex Magus wrote:
At 4th level, the hexcrafter magus gains access to a small number of witch's hexes. The hexcrafter magus picks one hex from the witch's hex class feature. He gains the benefit of or uses that hex as if he were a witch of a level equal to his magus level. This feature replaces spell recall.
The Hexcrafter has a clause (which I bolded) that says what you describe.

I believe that Angel Hunter was referring to the issue with Hex Arcana which lacks the leveling phrasing that Hex Magus has.

UM wrote:

Hex Arcana: A hexcrafter gains access to the following magus arcana, or may select any witch hex in place of a magus arcana. At 12th level, the hexcrafter may select a hex or major hex in place of a magus arcana. At 18th level, a hexcrafter can select a hex, major hex, or grand hex in place of a magus arcana. He cannot select any hex or arcana more than once.

Accursed Strike (Sp): A hexcrafter magus who can cast bestow curse, major curse, or any spell with the curse descriptor can deliver these prepared spells using the spellstrike ability, even if the spells are not touch attack spells.

The Hex Magus wording doesn't help with Hex Arcana since the phrase "that hex" limits the Witch-level equivalence to the Hex gained through Hex Magus. However many people accept the reasoning that Angel Hunter described and allow the Magus level to count as a Witch level when using Hex Arcana.


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ekibus wrote:

The entire sticky wicket of a "worse case scenario" is that it does NOT have to happen often. Usually, it only has to happen once.

I consider archetypes that forfeit "boring" defensive class abilities to be traps: The player sallies forth into a dangerous world, oblivious and care-free enjoying his altered class that he thinks is 5% or 10% better, right up until the time his super high INIT roll doesn't beat the monster, and then he's screwed when it draws & quarters him.

And only then, when he's calculating which equipment he'll be selling in PFS to pay for that Raise Dead ("Why does this keep happening to me?"), he'll begin to regret the decision to forfeit Uncanny Dodge in a rogue.

I'm a skill monkey in our group playing an AP, and I've had it happen to me at least 3 times.

The first was when I was scouting ahead in a room and got swarmed by undead. Thankfully, I made the saving throws and got out without too much damage. However, the reason I could've died here would be because of bad saving throws, not necessarily because I got hit.

The second was when I tried to reposition on top of a tower and had a bunch of roguish guys stealthed behind walls readied to stick the first person who went forward (which was me). I did get dropped because of that (sneak attack and facing the big bad who also has sneak attack is a pain in the ass), and I was at almost full HP. We came back and won it, but me getting dropped like that cost us a lot of consumable resources and action economy as a whole.

The third was when we were facing plant stuff in a basement and some bad guys in a hidden room showed up and backdoored us. I did live through this one, and when it was just me and the other bad guy, I figuratively turned him into a humanoid dartboard as revenge.

Uncanny Dodge would've been really helpful in those situations (no, I couldn't have it even if I wanted to), but the factor we were still able to defeat these encounters tells us that it wasn't absolutely necessary to have. Just convenient.


Looks like a fun class. I have a higher opinion though of uncanny dodge than other people.


DeathlessOne wrote:

...let's strike a compromise? Find a way to take Wary Eye trait and make sure your perception is high and you can make relatively reliable wisdom checks, and you won't have to worry about the pouncer. This way, in the rare (but possible event) of a rogue getting caught flat footed by an ambush pouncer that should probably target the more squishy caster, you have an alternative.

Yes?

It doesn't seem like a useful trait for anyone who is not a wisdom-advancing character:
Quote:

Wary Eye

Source Spymaster's Handbook pg. 6
Category Basic (Combat)
You know that you could be exposed at any time. Even your closest friends could someday become enemies, and so you have trained yourself to never be surprised by a betrayal. At the beginning of combat, before initiative checks are revealed, you can select one opponent you are aware of to be the subject of this trait. If you succeed at a Wisdom check opposed by the subject’s initiative check, you are not considered flat-footed against this subject for this combat, even if you normally would be. You can use this trait in a surprise round, even if you cannot otherwise act that round.

The opponents against whom you'd most need the use of the trait's benefit are those whom it is least likely to succeed against, such as any that you can't see right away, and/or with optimized initiative.

Not many characters have a raw wisdom modifier higher than +3.

It's also a Combat trait, meaning it'll be up against stiff competition in a martial class.

(The concepts most likely to gain use from the trait would be divine casters with low initiative scores. For example a dwarf cleric.)


Slim Jim wrote:
***snip***

Yes, it is not a perfect replacement but what do you think a compromise is? It's not both sides getting what they want. In this case, it would be shoring up the perceived weakness of missing out on uncanny dodge with an ability that would help offset the danger. Creatures CAN roll poorly on initiative. Players CAN roll high on ability checks. Having a backup plan is a good thing, even if it might not ensure 100% success.

I am done discussing this issue as I feel it is distracting from the overall theme. I want to see what CAN be done, and done well, with the class archetype. Now that we have alternates for uncanny dodge, if not perfect ones, we can move on. If you don't think they are good enough, fine, don't play one.


@Deathless: Generally, I'd say that boosting your flatfooted AC is your best investment for ignoring the lack of Uncanny Dodge. It's definitely doable. A 1 level dip for Medium/Heavy armor proficiency + masterwork or better breastplate, or mithral full plate, or a mithril breastplate... Those are all solid. Invest in the usual defensive items (Deflection/Natural AC), perhaps wear a shield you can drop as a free action? (Shield AC applies to flat AC IIRC.) Etc.

Examples: a quickdraw heavy shield can be put away as a free action if you have Quick Draw. If you happen to have gloves of storing, you can put away any shield whenever you want, easy. (Tower shield up when hexing bad guys, tower shield go away when NOT hexing bad guys.) However, I wouldn't buy gloves of storing explicitly for that purpose, because they're expensive. The cheapest option is to just have a buckler - you still can't drop it as a free action, but you can wear it while holding something in the hand (though if you're using that hand to attack you take a -1 penalty, and you don't get the buckler's AC bonus).

All of these would help in flatfooted situations.

Either way, don't take Wary Eye. It's... honestly, it doesn't seem that good to me. Focus on boosting your defenses instead: saving throws, Armor, ability to escape grapples and such, etc. Your hexes should give you a few options here (flight = staying out of danger, right?).

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