Solarian Solar Armor Build


General Discussion


First off, how popular is the solar armor Solarian?

Secondly, what's a good build for it? Emphasis on either Photon or Graviton? I'm playing a solar weapon Solarian, but thought it would be interesting to see the other side.


In my opinion: The best build for solar armor is a ranged focused build. Alternatively, the 'caster build' for solarian.

That said, if you're relying on bought weapons anyway, there's no reason not to have picked solar armor over weapon outside specific circumstances.

The savings on melee weapons can be pretty significant though.


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Starfinder Superscriber

I think there are a couple options for armor solarian that work pretty well.

The first is the shot-larian, or range-focused solarian. Basically, you ignore strength, max dex, and take longarm prof at level 1. From there, you basically take feats and stat boosts like a ranged soldier (though, maintaining a minimum charisma of at least 14 with possible stat boosts later). You may or may not consider switching to heavy weapons at some point. Revelations should be picked that enhance your armor effect, add useful effects to your weapons, or give you ranged or utility options. A 1-3 level dip in either Sharpshooter Soldier or Operative doesn't hurt this style if you time it right, but isn't necessary.

The second is the claw-larian, or natural attack focused solarian. For this, you're going to start out with a race that has an inate natural attack, like Vesk. For this build, you'll max out strength (16+) and *try* for a 14 Cha and, if possible, a 12-14 dex. You'll basically leave Charisma alone as you advance and focus on Dex/Str/Con for ability boosts. For levels 1-3, you'll probably rely on big ole unwieldy advanced weapon like a Doshko. However, around level 3 or 4, you're going to switch after taking the Improved Unarmed Strike feat and buying a Ring of Fangs. From there, you're all claws, all the time. You take revelations that add effects to your attacks or your armor. DPR wise, this build is competitive with a melee (weapon) solarian all the way up to level 12 or so. After that, you'd need to switch to a big ole unwieldy again to stay competitive, but most campaigns don't go past that anyway. A 1 level dip in Blitz Soldier (mostly for Strength to resolve and the init/speed bonus) doesn't hurt, but isn't necessary.


Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I haven't used Solar Armor and don't really have a plan to, and I have no clue exactly how popular it is. You might see it more than you'd expect, given people may want to use reach weapons, ranged weapons, EAC targetting weapons, or just want to get more use out of a Str/Dex build.

I'm speculating here, but I think Solar Armor would be more popular for dex-y classes dipping into Solarian.

Dipping into a Solar Armor Solarian would give you access to Charisma as a key stat, no loss in BAB, a bump in Fort and Will and +1 to Ref from Graviton mode. Your AC would be 1 higher than others your level as well, and you get two class skills of your choice. Lastly, Black Hole gives you a situationally useful means of repositioning your allies if they choose to fail the save.

If levels in operative weren't so good, I could see melee operatives dipping for the survivability boost.


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In terms of savings of solar weapon vs solar armor, while you can get away with not buying a weapon, you still need to invest in fusions and solarian weapon crystals if you want to keep up in terms of damage. In addition, solar armor means saving on the credits needed for a thermal capacitor armor upgrade at levels 5, 10, 15.

Are you going to grab heavy armor with solar weapon? If you do, then you're implicitly trading away mobility. Now you may or may not notice if you take stellar rush (it is that good).

I have run a Solar Armor Solarian in SFS up to level 5 so far, and it wasn't a max Dex ranged, or a natural weapon fighter. 14 Str/14 Dex/14 Cha starting stats. What it did do was Weapon Focus and Fleet at 1st level using a tactical pike.

That is a 50 foot threat range at level 1 (move and still attack), and 130 foot threat range at level 2. The reach also means forcing enemies to either take an AoO or stop ranged attacking. Compared to a heavy armor solarian which might threaten 30 or 35 feet at level 1. Or 65 to 80 feet at level 2. The enemy is also still free to guarded step and shoot if their ranged or spell options are better. The extra 2-3 squares on a move action also sometimes matters for getting to that unobstructed charge lane for stellar rush.

Throw on climbing suckers at level 2, and you've got some silly 3-D maneuvers you can pull off at low level. At higher level, equipment can even the speed difference out, but thats still trading credits for movement which the solar armor build doesn't necessarily need to spend.

I'll also note the Constructive Interference revelation from the armory and the enhanced resistance feat means at level 5 you have the option of 5 fire or cold resistance combined with 5 (or 10) electric or sonic resistance, combined with DR 5. It is a surprisingly tanky combination, even without any armor equipped at all.

Edit: I guess in summary what I'm saying is Solar Armor can lend itself to a more mobile, acrobatic Solarian combat style even without focusing on how exactly you maximize damage. Still focusing on photon mode usually, but 10 electric/sonic resistance in Gravition mode is handy to have in your back pocket at low level, making some enemies unable to damage you.


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Starfinder Superscriber

I haven't seen that build that I know of, but that sounds like a solid argument for a 'reach-larian'. Of course, you pretty much have to play a (blerg) human, or a Kish for that to work out the gate at level 1. I suppose Bantrid or Dragonkin might also work, since the former gives you the effect of Fleet and the later gives you an extra 5ft of reach. If I decide to make another Armor solarian at some point, I might try that.


Good stuff folks, thank you. I enjoy gleaning from others experiences, allows me to see things I hadn’t considered. When I started PF we had an Arcanist that had stuff like web and grease and other battle control spells. I was use to the blaster spells. First big battle we got into I saw the value of area control. Opened up a whole new line of thinking.

Exo-Guardians

It can be a lot of fun to do the most damage in a round, but my favorite characters to play are those that set up the fighter or soldier in the party to do it for me.


I have been toying with rolling a Kasathan Solarian who concentrates on just small arms. Taking any and all feats that help with small arms accuracy and damage. There is a Feat that lets me use 4 small arms at once. That coupled with Solarian armor and Solarian abilities that help with defense/positioning etc.It is just an idea, but essentially it is a Space Cowboy. DEX and CHR as high as you can go, followed by CON.


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I've built a Caster Solarion, Cha as high as possible, with Dex and Con as secondaries; Flare as the first revelation, and picking up the other Sos rev's later. it seem good on paper, but I haven't had many opportunities to play them, so Idk how well it will work in practice.

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