Looking for input on a PSF Cavalier


Advice

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I'm working on a Cavaliaer and needs some pointers.

I am wanting to build a Level 2 Human Cavalier Honor Guard/Statagist, Order of the Dragon that covers cover social skills and knowledge nobility (for a soverieng court boon). I am looking for a support character that is still a decent melee damage dealer.

This is the character so far.

PFS Cavalier:
Male Human Cavalier 2 (Honor Guard, Strategist)
NG medium humanoid (human)
Init +2 Senses Perception +5
DEFENSE
AC 22, touch 11, flat-footed 21 (+9 armor, 1 dex, +2 shield)
hp 18 (2d10+2)
Fort +4, Ref +2, Will +1; +1 vs. evil outsiders
Resist
OFFENSE
Speed 30 ft.
Melee longsword +4 (1d8+5 19-20) or lance +3 (1d8+5 x3)
Ranged throwing axe +3 (1d6+5 x2) or dagger +3 (1d4+5 19-20)
Special Attacks Challenge 1/day( +2 damage, allies receive a +1 circumstance bonus on melee attack rolls against the target of his challenge whenever he is threatening the target.),
TACTICS
Power Attack unless stated (included in stats)
STATISTICS
Str 16 Dex 14 Con 12 Int 13 Wis 10 Cha 14
Base Atk +2; CMB +5; CMD 17
Feats Power Attack, Skill Focus Bluff, Shake it Off
Skills Bluff +11, Diplomacy +8, Handle Animal +7, Intimidate +8, Knowledge Nobility +6, Perception +5,
Ride +8 (+12w/mount)
Languages Common
SQ Focused Study, Skilled, Order of the Dragon (Aid Allies), Sworn Defense, Tactician 1/day (Shake it Off)
Traits Extremely Fashionable, Purity of Faith
Combat Gear
Other Gear full plate, longsword, lance, 1 dagger, throwing axe, noble outfit with appropriate jewelry, 2 spring loaded wrist sheaths, backpack, belt pouch, blanket, flint and steel, iron pot, rope, soap, torches (10), trail rations (5 days), and a waterskin skin.
SPECIAL ABILITIES
Sworn Defense (Ex): At 1st level, whenever an honor guard issues a challenge, he can select one ally as his ward for the duration of the challenge. Whenever the honor guard is adjacent to his ward, he takes a –1 penalty to Armor Class, and the ward receives a +1 dodge bonus to AC. This modifies the challenge ability
Aid Allies (Ex): At 2nd level, whenever an order of the dragon cavalier uses the aid another action to assist one of his allies, the ally receives a +3 bonus to his Armor Class, attack roll, saving throw, or skill check. At 8th level, and every six levels thereafter, this bonus increases by an additional +1.

Mount will be a horse.

I plan to take Combat reflexes at third level and have very little plotted out from there.

I am unsure on what team work feat to take as I'm not convinced shake it off if a good choice. Also I need advice on the mount as I'm unsure how to build an effect AC.

Thanks in advanced.

Grand Lodge

More often than not, mounts in PFS will never be utilized fully as you're often inside and in close quarters. especially early career, later career areas open up. so, for now don't worry too much about mounted combat, just worry about what the Ride skill can do.

For Cavaliers, an early Teamwork feat that'd be worth it is easily Escape Route; give yourself a reach weapon, hand out the feat, and enable allies to run around without provoking.

later levels, if you wish to keep with your theme- Swift Aid & Harrying Partner (Teamwork) could be useful in keeping your action economy open.

Bodyguard, In Harm's Way, & Combat Patrol may fit your character's theme

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Thanks for the suggestion .

I really like escape route over shake it off, thanks.

If Cavalier is a poor choice for PFS (which is something I was concerned about what) would be a good choice?

Would a vanilla fighter with the trait Adopted-Halfling-Helpful and the above feats work almost as well? I looked at the High Guardian archetype but it locks in the aid other to a single character. Is that a concern I should have or just every scenario just announce how I am helping and go with that. Maybe go with Tactician?.

What would be a sturdy Martial support build I can use that would have decent weapon damage and party wide support?


i would take Cavalier - hound master. and walk with a dog.
or Samurai for the ultimate X2\X3 rolls.

order of the Dragon scream swift aid feat, for free buffs.

Grand Lodge

1bent1 wrote:
If Cavalier is a poor choice for PFS (which is something I was concerned about what) would be a good choice?

Cavalier isn't a bad class for PFS. Mounted combat is seldom used because of combat environs.

I have a Cavalier- an "Order of the Penitent" Constable- in PFS that grapples and feints with Improved Feint Partner and Distracting Cloak (Equipment Trick).

If you want to go the support route with Aid Another, realize that it's going to eat your action economy, until you get Swift Aid.

That's why i recommended a reach weapon and combat patrol, literally set up a defensive area for your allies. With Bodyguard, you can hand out more AC buffs, and with In Harm's Way- you can take the hit for them.
you don't need power attack for that. Combat Expertise, maybe- even though lots of people hate that feat.


1bent1 wrote:

Male Human Cavalier 2 (Honor Guard, Strategist)

NG medium humanoid (human)
Init +2 Senses Perception +5
DEFENSE
AC 22, touch 11, flat-footed 21 (+9 armor, 1 dex, +2 shield)
While no one's looking, replace that plate-armor you just bought with agile breastplate + armored kilt (totaling AC+7/Dex+3 max); result is AC-1 (until your dex improves), but saves a ton of money and 10lbs of weight, and alleviates ACP while afoot. (Because failing a DC5 Swim check sucks when you forgot to put a point in that skill like I know you didn't. ;-)
Quote:
Power Attack unless stated (included in stats)

I would not take Power Attack at 1st level with an attack-bonus of only +5 before subtracting. You need to hit more than you need to hurt opponents with only 7hp if you're capable of dishing out d10+4 (~9.5) on average at a one-time cost of 13gp.

Weapons: lance while mounted (charging only, then switch to...), bardiche while afoot or not charging. Don't forget your elevation bonus to attack while mounted (and you will!).

Quote:
Str 16 Dex 14 Con 12 Int 13 Wis 10 Cha 14
Those are MAD stats, with hitpoints subpar and will save abysmal. I presume Int is at 13 because you're eying Combat Expertise down the line. To make MAD go away, it's advisable to pick one of Int or Cha and dump it hard down to a 7. That'll permit the 15,14,14,14,12,7 20pt array or the 15,15,14,14,10,7 array.
Quote:
Feats Power Attack, Skill Focus Bluff, Shake it Off

* Power Attack ...see above.

* Skill Focus (Bluff) ...you could be a half-elf without losing feats and gain a host of other racial goodies (including support for your will-save). But since you're angling for three total feats via the human's Focused Study alternative racial trait, then Skill Focus (Ride) should be you're 1st-level choice. -- You're a slow-moving, heavy-armor martial who immediately gains 50' move and 0 ACP in the saddle...ergo, keep the mount alive and reduce your healing expenses by amplifying the skill that makes Mounted Combat work.
* Shake it Off ...the problem with this feat is that it requires adjacency, which is at variance with a desiring-to-be-mounted concept. Take Paired Opportunists instead (best martial feat in the game, especially for somebody with Combat Reflexes sharing the teamwork feat with the party). Don't forget that your horse can use it too.

Bluffing: if you're not pursuing a mechanism deployable as a swift-action, you'll stop bluffing the moment you have full-attack actions available. Your choice of class, archetype(?), and order do not appear to lend themselves easily to bluffing, meaning that you may already not be using it much anyway.

What I would take (if a human cavalier in my shoes): Combat Reflexes, Mounted Combat, Paired Opportunists. --In your shoes, Combat Reflexes will have to wait as you're doing the Focused Study/Skill Focus business. (The retraining rules are legal in PFS, btw.)

Quote:
Traits Extremely Fashionable
Bluff, Diplomacy, and Intimidate are already class skills for a cavalier, so this trait is merely chasing diminishing returns. Consider instead Dangerously Curious to gain Use Magic Device as a class skill. Get a wand of Grease for 2 prestige points, and at mid-level buy wands of Reduce Animal and Spider Climb; the idea with both is to more easily get your mount past choke-points.
Quote:
Purity of Faith
You're trying to bandaid a dumped stat (wisdom), which means that not dumping it saves you a trait. Your human cavalier is gaining 5 skill points per level with a 13 INT, which is two or three more than the average human full-BAB martial. Swap the numbers in INT and WIS, and take Dirty Fighting instead of Combat Expertise later on (if that was the intent). Or go with one of the arrays I list above.
Quote:


Sworn Defense (Ex): At 1st level, whenever an honor guard issues a challenge, he can select one ally as his ward for the duration of the challenge. Whenever the honor guard is adjacent to his ward, he takes a –1 penalty to Armor Class, and the ward receives a +1 dodge bonus to AC. This modifies the challenge ability
Aid Allies (Ex): At 2nd level, whenever an order of the dragon cavalier uses the aid another action to assist one of his allies, the ally receives a +3 bonus to his Armor Class, attack roll, saving throw, or skill check. At 8th level, and every six levels thereafter, this bonus increases by an additional +1.

While there's nothing wrong with this at the conceptual level, all this adjacency business is suboptimal at the mechanical level when you're a striker raring to go for double-damage on a lance charge carrying the action to the enemy.

~ ~ ~

Quote:
If Cavalier is a poor choice for PFS (which is something I was concerned about what) would be a good choice? Would a vanilla fighter with the trait Adopted-Halfling-Helpful and the above feats work almost as well?

You could be a halfling, and those do quite well in PFS (especially as paladins with a splash of unchained-rogue). You'd cakewalk your saves like a boss, and have far fewer troubles getting your dog into places.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Slim Jim wrote:
1bent1 wrote:

Male Human Cavalier 2 (Honor Guard, Strategist)

NG medium humanoid (human)
Init +2 Senses Perception +5
DEFENSE
AC 22, touch 11, flat-footed 21 (+9 armor, 1 dex, +2 shield)
While no one's looking, replace that plate-armor you just bought with agile breastplate + armored kilt (totaling AC+7/Dex+3 max); result is AC-1 (until your dex improves), but saves a ton of money and 10lbs of weight, and alleviates ACP while afoot.

Armored kilt is not legal for PFS.

You can still get agile breastplate, you could even make it of mithril.

The point about Armor Check Penalty is a good one.

Paired Opportunist is a good teamwork feat to share.

Cavalier can work in PFS, just don’t depend on having a horse to be effective. Challenge and Tactician still work, you are full BAB which means you have a good chance of hitting your target.


Selvaxri wrote:
Cavalier isn't a bad class for PFS. Mounted combat is seldom used because of combat environs.
In my experience, you'll get to enjoy it half the time (and 80% of the time in any non-urban/non-aquatic adventure), and if you're good at what you do, you'll cake-walk the low- to mid-level material (which will be most of your PC's PFS career). As always for cavaliers, will-saves will be the biggest impediment.
Quote:
That's why i recommended a reach weapon and combat patrol, literally set up a defensive area for your allies. With Bodyguard, you can hand out more AC buffs, and with In Harm's Way- you can take the hit for them. you don't need power attack for that. Combat Expertise, maybe- even though lots of people hate that feat.
For all that it takes to get off the ground, I don't think Combat Patrol is that good in a low-dex cavalier given the three tax-feats it requires (Combat Reflexes, which is OK because you'll want it anyway, and Mobility...which will also require Dodge). Result is a four-feat package for a benefit that doesn't come into play that often, i.e., if combat has already broken out, then you just attack, so it's usually an OoC full-round-action pseudo-ready gimmick, one that requires a newly-arriving opponents to grant an AoO to trigger. Problem: this low-dex build only has two AoOs per round with Combat Reflexes, so it doesn't have a lot to work with. Also, move is only 20' in heavy armor while afoot sans additional gear, so the movement limitation will trigger quickly in those cases. Basically, Combat Patrol would be a higher-level extravagance for this character.
BretI wrote:
Slim Jim wrote:
While no one's looking, replace that plate-armor you just bought with agile breastplate + armored kilt (totaling AC+7/Dex+3 max); result is AC-1 (until your dex improves), but saves a ton of money and 10lbs of weight, and alleviates ACP while afoot.
Armored kilt is not legal for PFS.
Dangit...(could'a swore they'd changed their mind about recently, but I see the winding-road icon is absent over at Nethys). In that case, go for masterwork Tatami-do (which has the same numbers as BP+AK).
Quote:
You can still get agile breastplate, you could even make it of mithril.

With a starting dex of 12, a MPB's dex allowance is unlikely to be filled out.

Liberty's Edge

I took in a halfling cavalier on a wolf mount and have had very little trouble getting around inside buildings, in PFS. My biggest problem was getting in a charge when other players moved into the charge lane (you can move through other party members, but you can't charge through them).

The solution was to go Gendarm archtype and swarm up the Mounted Combat chain as fast as possible. It looses the Tactician abilities, but gives out MC feats...

At fifth level I picked up Wheeling Charge, which lets you charge through party members and take one turn of up to 90 degrees. Charging became much easier (with a lance, for 3x damage!).

Another thing that assists in getting in your charges is having your mount be the Racer sub-type (Animal Companions pdf). This lets your mount pick up Nimble Moves and Acrobatic Step, which combine to let you move through four squares of difficult terrain as if it were normal.

The Hound Master archtype sounds interesting, though I've never played one.


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Odo Hillborne wrote:

I took in a halfling cavalier on a wolf mount and have had very little trouble getting around inside buildings, in PFS. My biggest problem was getting in a charge when other players moved into the charge lane (you can move through other party members, but you can't charge through them).

The solution was to go Gendarm archtype and swarm up the Mounted Combat chain as fast as possible. It looses the Tactician abilities, but gives out MC feats...

At fifth level I picked up Wheeling Charge, which lets you charge through party members and take one turn of up to 90 degrees. Charging became much easier (with a lance, for 3x damage!).

Here's a similar take:

STR- 8
DEX+ 17 (halfling, 15,15,12,12,12,10 20pt array)
CON: 12
INT: 12
WIS: 12
CHA+ 17

alternative racial traits: Outrider
character traits: Dangerously Curious,
01 Swashbuckler1 [Mouser][Swashbuckler's Finesse], Piranha Strike
02 Samurai1 [core][Resolve]
03 Fighter1 [Dragoon][Mounted Combat][Skill Focus:Ride], Boon Companion
04 Monk1 [Sohei][Mounted Skirmisher], DEX>18
05 Samurai2 [Order of the Warrior], Indomitable Mount
06 Paladin1
07 Paladin2 [Divine Grace], Quick Draw or Risky Striker
08 Samurai3, CHA>18
09 Samurai4, ...etc

Equipment bucket-list: Swordmaster's Flair, opalescent white pyramid ioun stone (waveblade), opalescent white pyramid ioun stone (heavy repeating crossbow), mithral agile breastplate, Agile waveblade, Agile wakizashi, masterwork heavy repeating crossbow (+ variety of ammunition), Champion's Banner, Silver Smite Bracelet

* Trades lance-charging for Mounted Skirmisher move with full-attack
* Mount is one level off full, and very well defended
* Unassailable saving throws + rerolls
* Challenge + Smite
* Panache with an 18-20 threat piercing weapon (wakizashi)
* Flurries with an 18-20 threat monk piercing weapon (waveblade)


Most of the really successful mounted combatants I've seen in PFS have been small chatacters on medium mounts.
Unless you are careful about what scenarios you play, a lot of them do not have room for a horse.
Charge lanes can still be a problem unless you stay in the front and pump your initiative. One solution I saw was a gecko lizard that charged on the walls and ceilings. Another is a flying mount, but you would have to switch to hunter or druid for that.
Whatever, don't be that guy that has nothing except charge attack. There used to be a guy in our area that would literally do nothing in an encounter except hold his action until he had a clear charge lane at the biggest opponent. Some fights he never took any actions at all. Then berated us for not giving him a charge lane. The archer rogue and caster cleric were serving as front line melee while he did nothing. Don't be that guy. [/rant]

As to the original post, I think you are trying to do too much with the wrong chassis. Cavaliers are great, but not really designed for support or social skills. Those sound like they are your main priority.

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