Best level 1 Wizard feat?


Creating a Character


Hi all, just as the Subject line says, what are your thoughts?


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Reach Spell is the only one I consider good. Allows you to use spells like Chill Touch, Shocking Grasp and Spider Sting without going into melee. I also find many spells have too little range, so adding another 30 ft on demand is very good.

The rest of the 1st level Wiard feats are meh at best. Second best is probably the Familiar, but only once you're high enough to get an additional "real" spell slot out of it. It's not worth it for the cantrip slots anymore since the base number of cantrips was increased to 5, especially since arcane school gives you a 6th cantrip on top of that.


I like Counterspell but it's better for later levels and Reach Spell is pretty ace.


Edge93 wrote:
I like Counterspell but it's better for later levels and Reach Spell is pretty ace.

Counterspell? Have you actually looked at the rules for how that works on page 197? Sorry, page 319.

If you expend the spell and its the same spell level as the other guy's, there's a (roughly) 50% chance you waste the spell with no effect.

(With some editing...)

Quote:

When attempting to

counteract an effect, compare the spell level of
the effect with the spell level of the spell you are
using. If your spell has a higher spell level than
that of the effect to be counteracted, you automatically
succeed. If your spell’s level is the same as the
effect’s spell level or lower, you must succeed at a
check using the relevant skill or ability against the DC of
the target effect.

On a successful check, the countered spell immediately ends.

So, have fun with that.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

My thoughts on them:

Counterspell
Counterspell is really hard to use effectively. You need to be able to identify the spell before you can correctly counterspell it, but that requires a skill feat and a reaction. Since counterspell itself is also a reaction, that means you can't identify and counterspell a spell in the same turn. You need the Quick Recognition feat before this actually functions, and Quick Recognition is once per round so if there are multiple enemy spellcasters you only get one shot at identifying a spell to counterspell and the rest get a free pass. Even then you need an exact match spell, and even then you need to make a counteract check. So that's two skill feats and a class feat and a spell slot just for - charitably - a 50% chance to negate an enemy spell on the off chance you have an exact match prepared.

If you can pull it off the effect is quite good, but it's ridiculously hard to actually get this to work.

Eschew Materials
Even more useless than it was PF1.

Familiar
At higher levels this will give you a bonus spell slot, but familiars themselves are pretty useless now that they lack autonomy.

Hand of the Apprentice
This is a terrible power, and is literally worse than most cantrips. If you really want a ranged attack then multiclass fighter, pick up point blank shot, and use a longbow. Two class feats and one magic weapon later and you've got a kickass at-will ranged attack. This feat is basically just a feat tax on universalist wizards to get a spell point pool.

Reach Spell
Spells have very restrictive range in PF2, the fly spell is a fairly high-level slot with poor speed and insufficient duration, and monster flight is as prevalent as ever. This puts wizards in an extremely awkward situation where they often have no options with which to contribute against a flying adversary. If you aren't using a longbow, picking up this metamagic feat is basically necessary as insurance against ranged flying enemies. Even then the range isn't sufficient for enemies that are purposefully keeping a safe clearance; it's not hard to put 65 ft between you and the wizard if you've got a 60 ft move speed (as many flying monsters do).

I kinda feel like it's an annoying feat tax, though, since the effect is pretty bad for one action and is only necessary because it's your only option in many situations.

Widen Spell
Sadly most of the spells you'd want to use this with are already 3-acction. It's just not very good.


Dasrak wrote:

My thoughts on them:

Counterspell
Counterspell is really hard to use effectively. You need to be able to identify the spell before you can correctly counterspell it, but that requires a skill feat and a reaction. Since counterspell itself is also a reaction, that means you can't identify and counterspell a spell in the same turn.

They fixed that. Not well, but they did. You now automatically identify spells you have prepared/can cast.

Quote:

Trigger A creature casts a spell within line of sight of you that you don’t

have prepared or in your spell repertoire, or a trap or similar inanimate
object triggers and casts such a spell. You must be aware the creature
is casting the spell or the trap is triggering.
If the spell is a common spell of level 2 or lower and you are trained in
the appropriate skill for the spell’s tradition, you automatically identify
it. The spell level you automatically identify increases to 4 if you’re an
expert, 6 if you’re a master, or 10 if you’re legendary. Otherwise, the GM
rolls a secret Arcana, Nature, Occultism, or Religion check, whichever
corresponds to the tradition of the spell being cast. If you’re untrained
in the skill, you can’t get a better result than failure. The DC of the
check is 10 plus triple the level of the spell. The DC for an uncommon
spell is usually 2 higher than for a common spell, and the DC for a rare
spell is usually 5 higher.

and

Quote:

Page 197—In the Spells chapter, just before the Dispelling

section, add a new section called Identifying Spells that
reads “Sometimes you need to identify a spell, especially if
its effects are not obvious right away. If you notice a spell
being cast or see the manifestations from its casting and you
have prepared that spell or have it in your repertoire, you
automatically know what the spell is, including the level to
which it is heightened. Otherwise, you must spend an action
28
on your turn to attempt to identify the spell using Recall
Knowledge, or can use the Recognize Spell feat (see page
170) to attempt to identify the spell using a reaction.”

Was added in 1.4 or there abouts (I have 1.5 and 1.6 readily available and its not in dark gray, indicating that its new).


Dasrak wrote:


Eschew Materials
Even more useless than it was PF1.

I'd disagree here, at least a little, simply because it lets you use spells with Material actions even with your hands full, as of the 1.6 update to Somatic actions.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Edge93 wrote:
I'd disagree here, at least a little, simply because it lets you use spells with Material actions even with your hands full, as of the 1.6 update to Somatic actions.

I suppose that's a consideration for a multiclass Cleric, but a Cleric will always prefer to use Sorcerer dedication instead of Wizard dedication. Gets pretty much all the same feats, but without requiring you to invest a whopping 16 into your dump stat.


Dasrak wrote:
Edge93 wrote:
I'd disagree here, at least a little, simply because it lets you use spells with Material actions even with your hands full, as of the 1.6 update to Somatic actions.
I suppose that's a consideration for a multiclass Cleric, but a Cleric will always prefer to use Sorcerer dedication instead of Wizard dedication. Gets pretty much all the same feats, but without requiring you to invest a whopping 16 into your dump stat.

I'd think it's decent for someone trying for a pseudo-Magus, too.

EDIT: Also I'm not sure Sorcerer MC for a Cleric would work the same, the wording of things implies that you can only substitute Material for Somatic with Sorcerer spells. Not sure if Eschew Materials has the same restriction.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Edge93 wrote:


I'd think it's decent for someone trying for a pseudo-Magus, too.

You still need a free hand for somatic components anyways, so it doesn't actually gain you anything.

Edge93 wrote:
EDIT: Also I'm not sure Sorcerer MC for a Cleric would work the same, the wording of things implies that you can only substitute Material for Somatic with Sorcerer spells. Not sure if Eschew Materials has the same restriction.

You know, I completely forgot that sorcerers got that for free. I'd just presumed they needed to pay a feat for it like Wizards do.


Dasrak wrote:
Edge93 wrote:


I'd think it's decent for someone trying for a pseudo-Magus, too.
You still need a free hand for somatic components anyways, so it doesn't actually gain you anything.

No, you don't need a free hand as of update 1.6.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Blave wrote:
No, you don't need a free hand as of update 1.6.

Only clerics got that, not wizards.


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Dasrak wrote:
Blave wrote:
No, you don't need a free hand as of update 1.6.
Only clerics got that, not wizards.

No, everyone got that.

Quote:

Update 1.6 makes it easier to cast spells when your hands

are holding something. This is primarily to help clerics and
paladins who thematically should be using a weapon and
shield or a two-handed weapon, but were unable to easily
cast a good number of their spells due to the way Somatic
Casting and touch spells work. These changes might cause
some thematic disconnects, so let us know whether they make
sense to you in the story or seem incongruous.

• Page 196—In Somatic Casting, remove the Requirements entry
and the Special entries for cleric and druid.
In the description, after
the second sentence, add, “You can make these gestures while
holding something in your hand, but not if you’re restrained or
otherwise unable to gesture at all. If you need to touch someone
or something, you can do so while holding something as long as
part of your hand is able to touch the target.”


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Draco18s wrote:
Dasrak wrote:
Blave wrote:
No, you don't need a free hand as of update 1.6.
Only clerics got that, not wizards.

No, everyone got that.

Quote:

Update 1.6 makes it easier to cast spells when your hands

are holding something. This is primarily to help clerics and
paladins who thematically should be using a weapon and
shield or a two-handed weapon, but were unable to easily
cast a good number of their spells due to the way Somatic
Casting and touch spells work. These changes might cause
some thematic disconnects, so let us know whether they make
sense to you in the story or seem incongruous.

• Page 196—In Somatic Casting, remove the Requirements entry
and the Special entries for cleric and druid.
In the description, after
the second sentence, add, “You can make these gestures while
holding something in your hand, but not if you’re restrained or
otherwise unable to gesture at all. If you need to touch someone
or something, you can do so while holding something as long as
part of your hand is able to touch the target.”

Clarification inb4 someone points out the "...for Cleric and Druid...", that bit is just referring to the clause allowing them to use Somatic with a focus in hand because that clause is now redundant with the change that everyone gets.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Edge93 wrote:
Clarification inb4 someone points out the "...for Cleric and Druid...", that bit is just referring to the clause allowing them to use Somatic with a focus in hand because that clause is now redundant with the change that everyone gets.

That is... very interesting. I was under the impression that the entire change there was strictly for the cleric and druid, and not for the other casters. That changes a lot, and Eschew Materials would definitely be useful for such builds.


I'm guessing they left the now redundant text allowing you to make somatic gestures with a wand or magical staff in your hand.


Xenocrat wrote:
I'm guessing they left the now redundant text allowing you to make somatic gestures with a wand or magical staff in your hand.

I think that is part of the "removed special" blocks.


I like Familiar the best. It's not optimal for DPR but it seems like the option most likely to generate more fun.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Bardarok wrote:
I like Familiar the best. It's not optimal for DPR but it seems like the option most likely to generate more fun.

Familiars only really work if your GM doesn't enforce the minion rules. As written, they have no agency and are completely incapable of acting independently. If you aren't present to constantly give them orders, they literally stop acting.


Dasrak wrote:
Bardarok wrote:
I like Familiar the best. It's not optimal for DPR but it seems like the option most likely to generate more fun.
Familiars only really work if your GM doesn't enforce the minion rules. As written, they have no agency and are completely incapable of acting independently. If you aren't present to constantly give them orders, they literally stop acting.

Yah they are useless in combat. More fun for character building though.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Bardarok wrote:
Yah they are useless in combat. More fun for character building though.

Not just in combat, but any situation. The minion rules don't go away just because you aren't swinging a sword.


Dasrak wrote:
Bardarok wrote:
Yah they are useless in combat. More fun for character building though.
Not just in combat, but any situation. The minion rules don't go away just because you aren't swinging a sword.

The minion rules specifically discuss rounds, actions, and reactions. Those only matter in encounter mode. Outside of combat intelligent minions do as they please so they should be treated as friendly loyal NPCs, still very useful.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Bardarok wrote:
The minion rules specifically discuss rounds, actions, and reactions. Those only matter in encounter mode. Outside of combat intelligent minions do as they please so they should be treated as friendly loyal NPCs, still very useful.

That still forms the basis for how exploration mode works. The restrictions don't suddenly go away just because you're not in combat; you still need to command the familiar for it to take actions.


Anyone know how Spider Sting works? Couldn't find how that poison works exactly.


Dasrak wrote:
Bardarok wrote:
The minion rules specifically discuss rounds, actions, and reactions. Those only matter in encounter mode. Outside of combat intelligent minions do as they please so they should be treated as friendly loyal NPCs, still very useful.
That still forms the basis for how exploration mode works. The restrictions don't suddenly go away just because you're not in combat; you still need to command the familiar for it to take actions.

I don't agree with that interpretation and haven't been running the game that way. But I guess the devs will need to clarify for the CRB release because you're right; by your interpretation of the minion trait familiars are completely useless.

As an aside we have derailed the thread so I'll stop now. To the OP I'll say familiars may or may not be useless depending upon how your GM interprets the minion trait. If your GM interprets it to allow minions to act as friendly NPCs out of combat instead of automatons then they can be a fun addition to the roleplay.


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Atalius wrote:
Anyone know how Spider Sting works? Couldn't find how that poison works exactly.

It works like any other poison. See affliction rules starting page 324 in the rule book.

More Specific for Spider Sting:
The target makes a fort save when hit with the poison. Success only deals 1d4 opison damage, failure gets him to Stage 1, dealing immediate 1d4 damage and making him enfeebled for one round. Crit Failure puts him at stage 2, dealing 1d4 poison and makign him enfeebled 2 for 1 round.

If poisoned (i.e. in stage 1 or 2) the target makes a new fort save every round*. Success reduces the stage by 1, reaching stage 0 ends the poison. Crit success reduces the stage by 2. The stage increases by 1 on a failure and 2 on a crit failure. In both cases he immediately suffers the effect of the new stage. You can't go higher than stage 2 for the Spider Sting Poison but other afflictions have more stages.

*The rules are a bit wonky on when exactly you make your saves. The affliction rules say after the duration listed in the stage, which would be one round for Spider Sting (i.e. on the next turn of the creature/effect that poisoned you) but the combat rules say you roll at the end of your turn (see page 306).

I'd probably go with end of your turn, since it's easier to remember than doing it on the trigger's turn. This does have some up- and downsides, though. If you're next in Initiative after being poisoned and succeed on the save, you might not suffer any debuff of the poison for the full duration (one round for Spider Sting). On the other hand, if you fail the save, you suffer the damage of the poison twice in rapid succession (once on being poisoned and once at the end of your turn).

So yeah, the affliction rules need some clarification but it's not like they were abundantly clear in PF1 either, so I guess they're going with tradition? ;-)


Thanks Blave! Appreciate it.

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