Dream Thief?


Advice


Okay I checked out some archetypes from Planar Adventures and this caught my eye. The Dream Thief

Conceptually I find it very interesting, but I wonder what the best use of it is. The premise is you give up ALL of your sneak attack to get the emotional focus ability of a phantom. One attack per turn is treated as a slam attack in terms of your emotional focus.

Now, since you don't get sneak attack anymore, I see a potential build as revolving around big attack to use with the focus abilities. Maybe the classic STR based Half Orc Rogue, or unchained with the Elven Curve Blade. The Anger and Dedication foci both increase damage dice which makes it appealing to use an Earthbreaker or something.

Any thoughts on how to use the archetype?


Hmm... I just realized that the Anger Focus could make for a good dipping class.

One level boosts your strength, gives free Power Attack, increases damage dice once per turn, trap finding, and effectively gives you 10 skill ranks.

I wonder if a dip to third level could be worth it. With Anger Focus I'd want to dip from a martial class. Are there any useful rogue talents for heavy martials?


By heavy martial you mean someone who isn't likely to use most physical skills due to heavy armor? Rogue talents will seldom be better than a feat for them, especially without sneak attack. If they want to use combat maneuvers there are some options including ninja trick (redirect force). A cavalier might like riding stunt, though being short of feats they might like a simple combat trick even better. Some of the weird ones like umbral gear might appeal to a character who isn't otherwise short of feats.


That is what I was thinking, although thinking about it some front line combatants are more agile.

I was just curious if it was worth dipping for three levels to get the flavorful lucid dreamer. I think so; you get plenty of skills and potentially a bonus feat.

I'm still wondering if it'd be a good idea to take all levels in Dream Thief though.


I personally see it as a good 1-3 level dip (depending on if you're allowed an Unchained Dreamthief) as 1 level is really all you need for 10 extra skill ranks + Int (you have two skills boosted by 1) for most builds, and 3 levels will give you Dex to damage for a finesse weapon of your choice.

Some of the better emotional foci are something I've personally used with this AT:

Anger:
Skills: The phantom gains a number of ranks in Intimidate and Survival equal to its number of Hit Dice.
Strength Focus: The phantom gains a +2 bonus to Strength and a –2 penalty to Dexterity. Instead of the phantom gaining a bonus to Dexterity as the spiritualist gains levels, an anger-focused phantom gains a bonus to Strength instead.
Powerful Strike (Ex): A phantom with this focus deals more damage with its slam attacks. It deals slam damage as a creature one size category larger than its current size. The phantom also gains Power Attack as a bonus feat.

So to start out Anger is really good for a Str based melee build. A free Power Attack feat, a boost to Str (punished by a shot to the kneecaps with Dex reduction, but oh well). If this is taken early enough, you can even use the Powerful Strike as a stand-in until you decide for a full attacker or a Vital Striker.

Kindness:
Skills: The phantom gains a number of ranks in Diplomacy and Heal equal to its number of Hit Dice.
Benevolent: When the phantom uses the aid another action, the bonus granted by a successful check increases by 1. If the phantom aids the spiritualist this way, the bonus instead increases by 2.
Opening Strike (Su): As a standard action, the phantom can make a melee attack against a foe. If this attack hits, the spiritualist designates one ally threatening that enemy. This ally can make a single attack at his full base attack bonus against that enemy as an immediate action.

Kindness will make you more of a support character in melee. You give +3 when you aid another (unfortunately you can't 'aid yourself' but meh) an as a standard if you can hit the thing you're attacking, you can give one of your buddies an extra attack (it eats their swift/immediate action though).

Desperation:
Skills: The phantom gains a number of ranks in Acrobatics and Escape Artist equal to its number of Hit Dice.
Combat Reflexes: The phantom gains Combat Reflexes as a bonus feat. Furthermore, when the phantom is within its master’s consciousness, it grants the benefits of Combat Reflexes to its master (if its master doesn’t have that feat).
Frantic Grip (Ex): The phantom can add its Dexterity modifier instead of its Strength modifier to its combat maneuver bonus when attempting to grapple. When the phantom is below half its total hit points, it gains a +4 bonus on grapple attempts and to its CMD against grapple combat maneuvers.

Desperation is great for most Dex builds as a free Combat Reflexes feat is great. If you go into Improved Grapple you can grab people in a headlock as they try to run by you. Kind of for more single target lockdown builds but the free feat you get makes it more worth for a melee character.

Jealousy:
Skills: The phantom gains a number of ranks in Appraise and Bluff equal to its number of Hit Dice.
Deceitful: The phantom gains Deceitful as a bonus feat.

Jealous Combatant (Su): Each time the phantom hits a creature with a melee attack, for 1 round that creature takes a –2 penalty on all attack rolls made against anyone other than the phantom. This effect does not stack with itself.

Are you the party tank? Dip one level for this. That's pretty much it... Oh and you can lie a little easier.

Despair:
Skills: The phantom gains a number of ranks in Intimidate and Stealth equal to its number of Hit Dice.
Power from Despair: The phantom gains a +2 bonus on attack and damage rolls against creatures that are shaken, frightened, panicked, cowering, or subject to effects such as aura of despair or crushing despair.
Miserable Strike (Su): If the phantom hits a creature with a slam attack, that creature must succeed at a Will saving throw (DC = 10 + 1/2 the phantom’s Hit Dice + the phantom’s Charisma modifier) or take a –2 penalty on attack and damage rolls for 1 round. This is a mind-affecting fear and emotionUM effect. Penalties from multiple hits don’t stack with themselves.

Are you an intimidate build. Yes? Here you go, free attack bonus and damage. As an added bonus a once per turn Cha based debuff (that also counts as a fear effect.)

Lust:
Skills: The phantom gains a number of ranks in Bluff and Diplomacy equal to its number of Hit Dice.
Constitution Focus: A phantom with this focus gains a +2 bonus to Constitution and a –2 penalty to Dexterity. Instead of gaining a bonus to Dexterity as the spiritualist gains levels, a lust-focused phantom gains a bonus to Constitution instead.
Alluring Presence (Su): A phantom with this focus can coerce enemies to attack it. As an immediate action, the phantom attempts a Diplomacy check against a creature targeting the spiritualist with an attack or harmful spell, provided the phantom is within the target creature’s reach (or range, if the creature is attacking with a ranged weapon or spell). The DC for this check equals 10 + 1/2 the attacking creature’s HD + the attacking creature’s Wisdom modifier. If successful, the phantom becomes the target of all the creature’s attacks for 1 round. This is a mind-affecting compulsion emotionUM effect.

Is your paladin complaining about their abysmal skill ranks? Do they need a better way to distract the big baddie from nuking your cleric? Look no further, with the power of Diplomacy (and your hopefully outrageous modifiers to it) you can tell that guy to hit you instead; and with your boosted Con, it's like picking up Toughness without actually having to! (Besides if you are in heavy armor, who needs Dex?)

These are my personal favorites (and seemingly most useful) emotional foci. Giving up SA for one of these is tough, but for some it's actually halfway decent.

Edit: As to going strait 20 level Dream Thief; it depends on your build. You don't have Sneak Attack, so as a damage rouge you're a little behind the game. If you're a skill monkey or a face, this AT works great all the way through without you being complete trash at combat. Also some foci, such as Kindness, grant extremely fun stuff at later levels (ladies and gentlemen, the Lay on Hands rouge).


A rogue 20 with lay on hands and feats building off it could be fun all right. Ultimate mercy... Worship a deity with an interest in fire or light and you can even use it to zap people (sunblade).


avr wrote:
A rogue 20 with lay on hands and feats building off it could be fun all right. Ultimate mercy... Worship a deity with an interest in fire or light and you can even use it to zap people (sunblade).

Unfortunately the ability is not called "Lay on Hands" so some people will argue that is doesn't allow for the feats, even though it states "...receives Lay on Hands as a paladin..."


The rules for this always makes my head spin, but does Anger Focus stack with lead blades?


MageHunter wrote:
The rules for this always makes my head spin, but does Anger Focus stack with lead blades?

I don't think so. FAQratta.

On AV's issue, I'm sure I've seen something which says that gaining a class feature as a member of that class is in fact the same as having that class feature.


I apologise for Thread Necro (and I could see nowhere else this is mentioned), but I think the 1 level dip to get 2 skills with X extra ranks (with X = PC's total HD), as Alphavoltario suggests above isn't as it appears:

The Spiritualist proper gets these ranks via the Phantom's Hitdice, so, as the HD are tied to that of the Spiritualist, they get a rank per "HD", which is essentially the same as the Spiritualist level.

The Dreamthief description, it is mentioned you at least get the free ability/feat the phantom has all the time, BUT (emphasis mine):

d20pfsrd wrote:

"She gains the abilities granted by that emotional focus (with the exception of the focus determining her good saving throws—she retains the typical rogue saves). For each of the two skills associated with that emotional focus, a dreamthief gains ranks in that skill equal to her *rogue* level; this does not allow her ranks in these skills to exceed her Hit Dice."

Effectively this means:

you {spend your total HD - Rogue levels} in the skill, to get an effective total of max ranks (and if you spend max ranks with "real Skillpoints" anyway, the bonus DT ranks are ignored),
not:
you take 1 level rogue dip to get max ranks w.o. spending other skill points in that skill (like using a headband of intellect +2 to get a skill you didn't have before)

To summarise, if you only dip one level of DT, you only get the one level's worth of ranks...

(I'll also be asking this at Hero Labs as it seems to have been applied incorrectly there too... I would have loved to spend less Skill Points on two useful skills but I can't in all conscience do so...)


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Doki-Chan wrote:

The Dreamthief description, it is mentioned you at least get the free ability/feat the phantom has all the time, BUT (emphasis mine):

d20pfsrd wrote:

"She gains the abilities granted by that emotional focus (with the exception of the focus determining her good saving throws—she retains the typical rogue saves). For each of the two skills associated with that emotional focus, a dreamthief gains ranks in that skill equal to her *rogue* level; this does not allow her ranks in these skills to exceed her Hit Dice."

Effectively this means:

you {spend your total HD - Rogue levels} in the skill, to get an effective total of max ranks (and if you spend max ranks with "real Skillpoints" anyway, the bonus DT ranks are ignored),
not:
you take 1 level rogue dip to get max ranks w.o. spending other skill points in that skill (like using a headband of intellect +2 to get a skill you didn't have before)

To summarise, if you only dip one level of DT, you only get the one level's worth of ranks...

This is correct. ^_^

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