UCRogue Advice


Advice


Well now, after long discussions and a ton of different and weird character concepts i settled for a simple and straightforward Vishkanya UCRogue.

He is dual wielding Kukris and his role in the Party is most likely going to be melee dmg and trap disarmer/scout.

Now i face a problem - i have no idea which Rogue tricks to take beyond level 4. The first 2 i think are "Weapon Training --> Weapon Focus (Kukri)" and "Ninja Trick --> Pressure Points".

I was thinking of taking minor and major magic trick, but i wanted to ask here, if i overlooked some really great rogue tricks, which i should absolutely take.

Grand Lodge

This is dependent on your GM being amicable to giving you surprise rounds, and if you’re doing anything social, but Deft Hands allows you to walk around carrying your kukris in hand and still make slight of hand checks to conceal them. Or if you need your hands you can still carry them in your sheathes without needing to conceal them. Throw in Quick Draw and the Underhanded rogue talent to get some major damage in the surprise round. Full attack in the surprise round with Sandals of Quick Reaction or the bandit archetype, too.

Grand Lodge

Pressure Points is a bit of a trap. Dropping a stat by 1 per hit sound good, until you realize that by the time you get enough hits in for that to have any real effect, the target should already be dead/unconscious. Bleeding Attack would be much better if you want a damaging rider on your sneak attacks.

If you do the minor/major magic tricks, Prestidigitation or Mage hand are solid for the minor. Vanish, Shield, Reduce Person, Infernal Healing, Obscuring mist, Summon Monster (hello flanking partner), Heightened Awareness, Sleep, Color Spray, Silent Image, Touch of Blindness...so many options that all work well in different scenarios. If you can squeeze in the feat Bookish Rogue, you can get them all and switch between them.

For a combat focused rogue, solid talents include: Bleeding Attack, Combat Trick, Distracting Attack, Shadow Duplicate. Ninja Tricks, Deadly Range, Style Master (lots of good combat styles work for rogues)

The biggest thing is to come up with a consistent way to get your sneak damage, either via things like invisibility or flanking, giving yourself concealment so you can enter stealth, etc.

Grand Lodge

Unless the whole group is stealthy, counting on surprise rounds sounds not plausible because of the "cling cling" hulk, it's more on the group than on the GM.

For a Trap detecting specialist, I would say Trap Spotter is almost mandatory. You need to get it automatically done, otherwise unless not caring about these or being skilled enough to avoid 90 percent of these in triggering them on purpose, it takes a sluggish amount of time.

Outside of that I would take the combat trick to get the first TWF feat (if you want to immediately TWF, and not waiting some levels), but it's up to you as there's no real bad choice, that's the advantage of being a toolbox.


Presently i am thinking about this build:

LVL Class: Rogue 1 0 BAB
1 (Feat) Two-Weapon-Fighting 1 0
2 (Rogue Talent) Weapon Training --> Weapon Focus (Kukri) 1
3 (Feat) Combat Expertise 2
4 (Rogue Talent) Trap Spotter 3
5 (Feat) Gang up 3
6 (Rogue Talent) Combat Trick-->(Dazzling Display) 4
7 (Feat) Martial Dominance 5
8 (Rogue Talent) Obscuring Strike 6
9 (Feat) Improved Two-Weapon Fighting 6
10 (Rogue Talent) Double Debilitation 7
11 (Feat) Improved Critical (Kukri) 8
12 (Rogue Talent) Hide in plain sight (Urban) 9
13 (Feat) Shatter Defenses 9
14 (Rogue Talent) Opportunist 10
15 (Feat) Combat reflexes(?)/Critical focus(?) 11
16 (Rogue Talent) Blinding Strike-->Blinding Critical 12

The idea is to utilize the skill unlock for the UCRogue to get intimidate unlocked and then try to intimidate via Martial Dominance. Since Martial dominance requires me to crit a lot, i am taking in the obscuring strike/blinding strike combo as permanently blinding opponents sounds really powerful.

What do you think? Am i just too optimistic here?


I'll look at it more closely later, but one easy thing to pick out is that you could take the "dirty fighting" feat in place of "combat expertise". "Dirty fighting" acts as combat expertise for the purpose of fulfilling prerequisites for improved combat maneuvers and does a few other things.


Obscuring blow is 1/day, requires that you not do your sneak attack damage (which means no debilitating injury) and has a save which is based off something other than your highest stat.

Blinding critical has a save based off your BAB. Like obscuring blow it isn't going to scale well enough, in this case because your BAB isn't full.

Gang up is a decent feat...but you have paladin problems already. Where are you going to get two cooperating melee allies from?


@ErichAD - Thanks a lot, i didnt know that!

@avr - the gang up is actually for the Paladin and the rest of the party. Now i dont care if we can actually flank - 2 other team members attacking the same target is sufficient.

Obscuring blow is only in there as a prerequsite for Blinding critical. But i am afraid, you are right about the BAB, i will consider if there are better options.

Thanks a lot for the input!


Dirty fighting can't replace combat expertise for gang up BTW, only when combat maneuvers are involved.

I was thinking the paladin might actively try to avoid gang up being useful - ganging up to sneak attack sounds even less honourable than flanking to sneak attack - but if they'll just grump about it that's OK.


That's what I get for posting when I don't have time to double check that I didn't forget something. Sorry about that.


I'm not a super fan of those kukris. They're like daggers you can't throw. They have a Threat Range of 18-20, but so do Rapiers, scimitars, Falchions, Elven Curved Blades, Katanas, and Wakisashis. The thing that all those weapons have in common is that hey all do more damage then kukris, and so they also all do more damage on a Crit. If I were using Kukris, I don't think I would play a Rogue at all--Crits don't multiply Precision Damage--I would pick a class that makes the 1d4 Base Damage of the Kukri not matter. I would be a Divine Commander Warpriest and take like Seize the Moment or Outflank, which gives allies attacks of opportunity whenever you Crit. Also, Warpriest Sacred Weapon Damage replaces weapons' Base Damage.

You have 3 ways for locking in Sneak Attack Damage: Gang Up and Dazzling Display + Shatter Defenses. Gang Up is okay, especially if you combine it with something like Seize the Moment or Outflank. You don't get Shatter Defenses until Level 13. You have Blinding Critical, but not until Level 16. I'm not sanguine about Shatter Defenses for your character, but if you get it at all, you should get it much sooner. Shatter Defenses are a way for you to lock in on Sneak Attack Damage, so you want that sooner, not later. If you want to Blind your opponents, you also want to do that sooner, not later.

Improved Feint would be an easy one to get: you already are taking Combat Reflexes, so it's just 1 Feat. Move Action Feint with a Bonus, then Attack with Sneak Attack Damage as a Standard Action.

Also, how about Instead of Blinding Critical, Obscuring Blow, and Shatter Defenses, you get Improved Dirty Trick, Greater Dirty Trick, and Quick Dirty Trick? Dirty Trick Combat Maneuvers let you Blind opponents which denies them their Dex Mods to AC, locking in your Sneak Attack Damage and giving you and your whole party Total Concealment. Blinding your opponent with a Dirty Trick only requires 1 successful Attack Roll, where Shatter Defenses only works on opponents you've already hindered, probably though Dazzling Display. Blinding your opponent with Dirty Tricks is simply better than Obscuring Blow: 50% Miss Chance > 20% Miss Chance, and again, you can use Dirty Tricks to lock in your SAD to begin with where Obsuring Blow can only be used if you already got your SAD locked in. Blinding Critical you aren't getting until level 16, and it only works on a Crit. You can get Improved Dirty Trick right away, and Quick and Greater dirty tricks only require a BAB of +6, and then you can Blind your opponents with a single Attack Action.

The thing that's special about Shatter Defenses is that your opponents are actually Flatfooted, not just denied their Dex Mod to AC. That opens the door to the Sap Adept, Sap Master, and Knockout Artist Feats, which will more than double your Sneak Attack Damage. There are 2 disadvantages to this, though: you have to do nonlethal damage and only with Unarmed Strikes; you could use any Blunt Weapon if you don't use Knockout Artist.


Elf, Elven Curved Blade
1Unchained Rogue1: Sneak Attack 1d6, Combat Expertise, Weapon Finesse
2U2: Evasion, Rogue Talent, Underhanded Trick (Improved Dirty Trick), BAB+1
3U3: Danger Sense +1, Improved Feint, Finesse Training, Dex-to-Damage, SAD+1d6, BAB+2

Now you have a weapon that does 1d10. You get Dex-to Damage, and youhave 2 ways to lock in your Sneak Attack Damage: Move Action Feint then Standard Action Attack, or Standard Action Dirty Trick to Blind your opponent. And you get this by level 3.

4U4: Rogue Talent, Combat Trick: Gang Up, BAB+3
5U4Cavalier1: Constable, Outflank, Tactician, Combat Reflexes, BAB+4

Now you have a 3rd way to lock in Sneak Attack Damage: Gang Up, which you were already taking, lets you be treated as Flanking even when any 2 of your allies are threatening, and not otherwise Flanking. You probably hate dipping--most people do--but check out the hotness: with Outflank, which you can gift to your Allies via the Tactician Class Ability, makes it so you and your allies give each other Attacks of Opportunity whenever any of you get Crits, and with your 18-20 Threat Range, you'll be giving those out a lot. And if you use the Elven Curved Blade, your crits do 2d10 instead of 2d4. 10 is bigger than 4.

You are planning to take Martial Dominance. That tells me that Dazzling Display is important to you, not just as a prerequisite to take Shatter Defenses. Okay, so, the Elven Curved Blade is a weapon that it's worth taking Great Cleave for: The first round, you use Dazzling Display as a Full Round Action Shakening your opponents, the 2nd round, you go up as a Move Action and Great Cleave as a Standard Action, and now all those Shaken Opponents are also Flatfooted all of a sudden.

The Elven Curved Blade is a weapon to take Vital Strike for. You Feint as a Move Action, then Attack as a Standard Action, doing an extra 1d10, in addition to your Sneak Attack Damage. You can take Power Attack and Furious Focus.

Grand Lodge

Crits are kind of wasted on rogues, they don't multiply the vast majority of their damage, and rogues don't get enough feats to really amplify crits very well. There are better and easier ways to enable your sneak attacks, get a cruel enchantment on your weapon, use your skill unlock at 5 on intimidate, demoralize your foe, then rip them apart. Take Skill Focus Stealth, then Hellcat Stealth to be able to hide in plain sight at level 6, in any environment. Use Dirty Trick to blind them. Use methods of smoke or darkness you can see through but the enemy can't. And so on.

IMHO Dirty Fighting is better than Combat Expertise for a rogue, more bonuses to hit are always needed on a martial character with only 3/4 BAB, which pairs nicely with the Dirty Trick line of feats, especially if you are good at describing your actions in combat to explain how your dirty tricks are working. (Sand in the eyes, pulling their pants down, cutting straps on their gear, etc.)


Slyme wrote:
Crits are kind of wasted on rogues, they don't multiply the vast majority of their damage, and rogues don't get enough feats to really amplify crits very well.

Yeah, but the OP wants it, so I am giving my best advice for using it.

Slyme wrote:
cruel enchantment on your weapon,

That is good advice for a player who likes Dazzling Display.

Slyme wrote:
Use methods of smoke or darkness you can see through but the enemy can't. And so on.

I like dipping 3 levels in Bard with the Flame Dancer Archetype, then getting an Eversmoking Bottle.

Slyme wrote:
IMHO Dirty Fighting is better than Combat Expertise for a rogue,

Sometimes. Maybe. He likes Flanking: he's taking Gang Up, and Dirty Fighting is specifically for Flanking, but

avr wrote:
Dirty fighting can't replace combat expertise for gang up BTW, only when combat maneuvers are involved.

is right: Dirty Fighting only counts as a Combat Expertise-Prerequisite for the purpose of Combat Maneuver Feats, so it won't help for getting Gang Up, and it won't help for Improved Feint, which is a very low-cost way to lock in Sneak Attack Damage.

Also, Combat Expertise is underrated: the OP's character is limited to light armor. He can use the extra AC. And I often find PCs have Attack Bonus to Spare.

Slyme wrote:
in combat to explain how your dirty tricks are working. (Sand in the eyes, pulling their pants down, cutting straps on their gear, etc.)

I love Dirty Tricks, and you can use Dirty Fighting for Dirty Tricks.


OK. Thats a lot to take in, but i would like to clarify some points:

1. Why Kukris?

Well, because i could get them from my race, which is Vishkanya. Most of the other "good" weapons, especially Wakizashi would have forced me to go Tengu or Human, which i didnt want to.

Concerning the damage, i think you miscalculated.

If i hit with a Elven curved blade and my DEX of 20 i do, on average, 12,075 ((5,5+5)*1,15) DMG per hit

Now, the Kukri does, on average, 8,625 ((2,5+5)*1,15) DMG per hit. However, there are 2 of those, which means i do on average 13,513 DMG per Hit ((2.5+5)*1.15+(2.5+2.5)*1.15)*0.9 (--> the 0.9 is to factor in the worse to hit chance, which is really only an approximation).

So, in a full-attack, dual kukris substantially outdamage the Elven curved blade (and most other weapons).

All the other weapons you mentioned are not light so either they cant be used in DW or you can use weapon focus only for one of them, which will reduce the maximum damage. So most of them will do even worse. The only weapon that is certainly more effective is the Wakizashi, which i would have chosen if the weapon type would fit the campaign.

2. Dirty Trick vs shatter defense

Now there is something i dont understand: According to what i see, performing a dirty trick, even with improved dirty trick, takes a standard action, which effectively means you cant attack in the same round unless you have quick dirty fight. So, for 3 feats i get the chance to blind a foe by sacrificing one of my attacks. While i can see the appeal, it seems very situational to me.

3. Martial Dominance

"You are planning to take Martial Dominance. That tells me that Dazzling Display is important to you, not just as a prerequisite to take Shatter Defenses. "

I dont understand that statement.

I didnt actually plan on using Dazzling display at all. The idea was to get a chance to intimidate on Crit and then use shatter defense to flat-foot the enemy. Since the intimidate check happens as an immidiate action, i would not have to sacrifice an attack to make the check and could even intimidate them on an AoO.

Now, i can understand why this may be very ineffective. Not only do i need a total of 4 feats/tricks (Combat Expertise, Martial Dominance, Dazzling Display, Shatter Defenses), i also need to crit and then i need to pass the intimidation check. But most of these feats kinda do stuff on their own.

4. Feint

Well this is, without a doubt the situation where a 2H-weapon like the elven curved blade and the falchion shine. Since you sacrifice your move action, all you can do is a single attack and thats were those weapons rock.

But this is only viable, when you are not able to get your SAD by flanking and i really dont know, how often this actually happens.

5. I have no idea what i am doing.

Unlike you guys i have never actually played Pathfinder in a P&P-Setting before. Maybe i am overlooking something and maybe i have a completely wrong idea of how combat in P&P works. In my imagination i will be able to flank all the time and therefore will have little problems on getting my SAD and have the whole intimidate/shattered defense as icing in the cake.

Please tell me if i am completely wrong here.


You get the two handed bonus to damage for your dex to damage. So the elf sword would be 12.5. Without taking double slice, you only get half dex to damage on your off hand kukri attack, so that would be 12. You'd also need to insert your to hit loss from two weapon fighting into your crit boost number since you're loosing confirmations. You can pick up double slice of course, and you'd be at about the same. However, you don't benefit from haste and attacks of opportunity as much and you need to buy more weapons. There's also the differences between power attack and piranha strike to consider, but you haven't selected either one here.

It may be worth taking violent display over martial dominance. You should have the skill ranks to max out intimidate, and being able to use dazzling display on crits or sneak attacks will be more useful than a single intimidate against your target on crits only. There's also the human only intimidating confidence feat, but I think that's outside the character concept.


St0nemender wrote:

Dirty Trick vs shatter defense

Now there is something i dont understand: According to what i see, performing a dirty trick, even with improved dirty trick, takes a standard action, which effectively means you cant attack in the same round unless you have quick dirty fight. So, for 3 feats i get the chance to blind a foe by sacrificing one of my attacks. While i can see the appeal, it seems very situational to me.

If you make a high roll, or if you have Greater Dirty Trick, the hinderance has a Duration of greater than 1 Round. It normally does cost a Standard Action to use Dirty Tricks, and that is a problem only slightly mitigated by taking Quick Dirty Trick, which lets you do it as an Attack Action, which means you could do it as an Attack of Opportunity or as part of a Full Attack.

But Shatter Defenses also requires an Attack Action, and you can't even use it unless you already had hindered them in some other way the Round before such as by Dazzling Defense or some other means, Cornudgeon Smash, for instance.

Actually for locking in the Sneak Attack Damage by either Shatter Defenses or Quick, Greater Dirty Trick, I'd want to maximize my Attacks/round, which is why I recommended a Natural Attack build in the first place (That was you, right?). In absence of multiple attacks in a Full Attack, you might get lots of Attacks via Attacks of Opportunity. You seem to like Crit Fishing, so that's why I recommended the combination of Elven Curved Blade and Outflank. That, by the way is another reason why I recommended the Elven Curved Blade: twin Kukris might be almost as good as 1 Elven Curved Blade in a Full Attack, but not for making Attacks of Opportunity: you can't make an AoO with 2 Kukris, so instead of 2d4 vs 1d10, it becomes 1d4 vs. 1d10.

In general, I recommend having a few ways at your disposal for locking in your Sneak Attack Damage. Improved Feint is an inexpensive way to fairly reliably deny your opponents their dex mods to AC. and since both IF and Improved Dirty Tricks both require Combat Expertise, taking one paves the way for the other. Also, there is a Rogue Talent just for taking Improved Dirty Trick, so that makes it even cheaper. Dirty Trick Feats are still costly, but the Dirty Trick Combat Maneuver is very versatile.


St0nemender wrote:

Martial Dominance

"You are planning to take Martial Dominance. That tells me that Dazzling Display is important to you, not just as a prerequisite to take Shatter Defenses. "
I dont understand that statement.

I was seeing that Martial Dominance gives you a bonus to Intimidate (BAB instead of Skill Bonus), and you were taking Dazzling Display. I was only guessing you wanted to use them in combination.

St0nemender wrote:
I didnt actually plan on using Dazzling display at all. The idea was to get a chance to intimidate on Crit and then use shatter defense to flat-foot the enemy. Since the intimidate check happens as an immidiate action, i would not have to sacrifice an attack to make the check and could even intimidate them on an AoO.

Okay, so you were planning to 2 weapon fight with kukris. On your first Crit, you would Intimidate your opponent, then on your 2nd hit, you would use Shatter Defenses to make them Flatfooted, and with 2 weapons instead of 1, you have more chances to score those Crits in the first place. That idea has potential to go nicely with my recommendation to dip 1 level in Cavalier to take Outflank and the Tactician Class Ability to give Outflank to your whole party. Outflank will make it so, whenever any of you Crit, you give all your allies Attacks of Opportunity, so that will make it even more likely to activate Martial Dominance.

I was kind of thinking you might use Dazzling Display to Intimidate lot of opponents all at once, then the next round you wade into melee and use Great Cleave to make them all Flatfooted the next Round.

St0nemender wrote:
i would not have to sacrifice an attack to make the check and could even intimidate them on an AoO.

No, but you do sacrifice. When you 2 weapon fight with the 2 weapon fighting Feat and the Off-Hand is Light, all your Attacks suffer a -2. Also, if your Full Attacks depends on more, smaller attacks adding up, your attacks are more likely to be nullified by a creature with Damage Resistance.

Admittedly, part of my advice to go with Elven Curved Blade had to do with making Attacks of Opportunity. Each of those Attacks does more damage when you use a bigger weapon, although admittedly the more attacks you have, the more likely you that one of those attacks crits in the first place.

The decision is nuanced, no doubt about it.


St0nemender wrote:

Feint

Well this is, without a doubt the situation where a 2H-weapon like the elven curved blade and the falchion shine. Since you sacrifice your move action, all you can do is a single attack and thats were those weapons rock.

Exactly.

St0nemender wrote:
But this is only viable, when you are not able to get your SAD by flanking and i really dont know, how often this actually happens.

Sometimes, you can't achieve Flanking. In particular, one of the players says he doesn't want to help with that cause honorpaladin stuff. Sometimes you run into an opponent that can't be faked out, and you need to Flank. Sometimes you run into an opponent that can't be faked out, you can't flank, so you have to Blind them. In general, I recommend having a few different ways of locking in your Sneak Attack Damage.

Combat Expertise + Improved Feint is one way to lock in your Sneak Attack Damage.

Combat Expertise + Gang Up is another (your idea, good idea)

Combat Expertisse + Improved Dirty Trick is a 3rd (Your were planning on taking Blinding Crit, anyway!).

I recommend all 3, especially since all of them pretty much just require Combat Expertise, and one of them can even be taken as a Rogue Talent.


@ErichAD

Crap, you are right. I did indeed forget about the 1,5 DEX. Hm. That actually changes things, like, a lot. At least for normal Attacks. But what about sneak attacks? Even with only 1D6 SAD, 2 attacks with the Kukri give me 2*3,5 DMG, where the elven blade only gets 1*3,5 DMG. This gets even worse with more SAD-Dice.

Are full round SAD-attacks so uncommon that this isnt really a factor?

Doesnt 'violent display' require me to be a weretiger or were-tiger kin? I could work that into my backstory somehow, but this does sure smell like power gaming to me. Dont get me wrong, the feat is absolutely great but kinda hard to acquire.

@Scott Wilhelm

OK, you convinced me. Dirty tricks do have a certain charm, where the whole intimidation route did feel a bit clunky. But what i dont get is that you would still need to do a combat maneuver check right? And that check would still be based on the STR-Modifier, which is 0 for my char.

In the "cavalier"-dip: Cant do that. How would i ever work that into my rogue career? "Oh yeah, i have been known to sneak, steal, and attack from the shadows, but now i aspire to serve on the battle field with my valiant steed, at least for a few days"?

Also: A general question: is there a nice way for rogues to move and do a full-attack on the same turn?


You're playing a race based in ancient indian myth, and that comes from the same place you'd expect to find weretigers in Golarion, I think you landed in a character where associating with weretigers is more likely than usual. And since association is the only requirement, I think you have that covered.

Whether or not full round sneak attacks are likely will change from game to game. I've played in games where so few things survive a round, that you're usually moving in to attack most turns, and I've played in others where you're practically chopping down trees. My preference over the years has been toward the larger single hits due to it working in a wider variety of situations and it being easier to afford one weapon.

The only reliable way I know of to use dexterity for dirty tricks, is to take the agile maneuvers feat or two levels of Slayer:Bounty Hunter and trade away sneak attack dice for a free action dirty trick with that attack. There are a few other ways, but they're usually dependent on weird inventory or unusual situations like the mud in your eye feat, net trickery, lamp equipment trick and the cayden deity fighting technique.


St0nemender wrote:
OK, you convinced me. Dirty tricks do have a certain charm, where the whole intimidation route did feel a bit clunky. But what i dont get is that you would still need to do a combat maneuver check right? And that check would still be based on the STR-Modifier, which is 0 for my char.
ErichAD wrote:
The only reliable way I know of to use dexterity for dirty tricks, is to take the agile maneuvers feat

Yeah, that.

St0nemender wrote:
In the "cavalier"-dip: Cant do that. How would i ever work that into my rogue career? "Oh yeah, i have been known to sneak, steal, and attack from the shadows, but now i aspire to serve on the battle field with my valiant steed, at least for a few days"?

As a roleplaying element? Remember I was recommending the Constable Cavalier Archetype. So I'm thinking that you are a Rogue in the company of a Paladin, and over the course of roleplaying together, he is transforming you from a backstreet thug into a force for law, order, and goodness. You will be a criminal reformed to be a cop. Or you could just build your character for mechanics and roleplay by roleplaying...

St0nemender wrote:
Also: A general question: is there a nice way for rogues to move and do a full-attack on the same turn?

Not exactly that, but there is a Ninja Trick that lets you take a Style Feat. There are 2 Styles I like a lot: Panther and Snake Style. Panther Style Feats give you a Free Action Unarmed Strike whenever you Provoke an Attack of Opportunity by moving out of a Threatened Square. Snake Style gives you an Unarmed Attack of Opportunity whenever someone Attacks you and Misses, and lets you have another as an Immediate Action. Since you would be provoking lots of attacks of opportunity, it would behoove you to take Dodge and Mobility, and if you are in the neighborhood, how about Spring Attack, maybe even Whirlwind Attack, too?

You might apply Panther or Snake Style to a Weapon through the use of Ascetic Style. But to use more than one Style Feat, you need to take levels in Monk, Master of Many Styles.

A simpler way to move and get lots of Attacks with the character you are using now would be to take Great Cleave. Functionally, Cleaving is a sort of poor-man's Whirlwind Attack, allowing you to keeping attacking opponents adjacent to each other and threatened by you for as long as you keep hitting. Cleaving is a Standard Action, so you might Move yourself into position, then Great Cleave.

Another thing you might do with this character is Move and then Vital Strike. Vital Strike only works as a single, standard action attack, but you roll double the damage dice. You can take Feats to upgrade Vital Strike to triple and maybe more, and also to combine Vital Strike with Great Cleave.


If you have kukris but don't get much from crits, Butterfly's Sting is an option to give those crits to anyone else in your team that'd use 'em more. There's the flavour need to worship Desna, but you already had Combat Expertise in your build, so if it suits you, it'll slot in easily.


Wow. Once again i have to thank you for your insights.

*sigh* so many, many options :D


St0nemender wrote:
Crap, you are right. I did indeed forget about the 1,5 DEX. Hm. That actually changes things, like, a lot. At least for normal Attacks. But what about sneak attacks? Even with only 1D6 SAD, 2 attacks with the Kukri give me 2*3,5 DMG, where the elven blade only gets 1*3,5 DMG. This gets even worse with more SAD-Dice.

I think you also forget the half-dex on the off-hand attack. You also ignore the double cost to enchant the weapon, which increases the already problematic hit chance.

Rogue damage per round analysis is a bit problematic because of Debilitating Injury, but at 8th level against a flanked average CR8 enemy, my calculator shows that the elven curved blade does more DPR than two kukris. TWF is slightly ahead with Improved TWF, but that's another feat.

St0nemender wrote:
In the "cavalier"-dip: Cant do that. How would i ever work that into my rogue career? "Oh yeah, i have been known to sneak, steal, and attack from the shadows, but now i aspire to serve on the battle field with my valiant steed, at least for a few days"?

Considering that the Rogue class isn't really good at sneaking and attacking from the shadows, and that you need some reason to work with the party anyway, it could easily ne done. The "Rogue = thief" thing is one of the most overused and annoying cliches of roleplaying games, anyway. If that's how you play your Rogue, I'm beginning to symphathize with the Paladin player.

St0nemender wrote:
Also: A general question: is there a nice way for rogues to move and do a full-attack on the same turn?

No, there isn't, which is a big problem. The existing feats for specific attacks (natural or unarmed) require high levels (Claw Pounce 14th, Pummeling Charge 16th, Totemic Master 18th).

­

Scott Wilhelm wrote:
Quick Dirty Trick, which lets you do it as an Attack Action

No no no, it's not an "attack action", it's in place of a melee attack. That's a very important distinction - if it were an attack action, it would still require a standard action to use, and not work with AoOs of rull attacks.

Scott Wilhelm wrote:
But Shatter Defenses also requires an Attack Action

Also 'no', it requires a hit, i.e. a successful attack roll, not an action.

Scott Wilhelm wrote:
Actually for locking in the Sneak Attack Damage by either Shatter Defenses or Quick, Greater Dirty Trick, I'd want to maximize my Attacks/round, which is why I recommended a Natural Attack build in the first place (That was you, right?).

Problem with natural attack rogue is that you don't get d2d on more than one type (two at 11th level).

Grand Lodge

I played a URogue 4 / Hunter 7 in PFS that turned into an absolute beast in combat using 2 keen kukri.

4 levels of URogue gets you dex to damage, weapon finesse, and debilitating injury, etc.

Hunter gets you the strongest animal companion in the game and free shared teamwork feats with it. (I chose a tiger, very strong combat companion) Plus it is full BAB, so you will hit more often.

Take Outflank, Pack Flanking, Paired Opportunist, Precise Strike, boon companion, accomplished sneak attacker, TWF.

By level 11 you will be doing 3-4 attacks per round with a 15-20 crit range, your tiger will be doing claw/claw/bite/grab/rake/rake. Any time either of you scores a crit it will provoke an AoO from the other...you have control over your own flanking partner, who you don't even need to be opposite of thanks to Pack Flanking, you get a +4 instead of +2 if you both threaten the same target...you will almost always be doing 4d6 SA damage, and your tiger will get 1d6...basically, if you get a full round attack on something it will die before you finish all your dice rolling.

Hunter/Rogue:

1. Rogue 1 Finesse training, Sneak attack +1d6, Trap finding
Feat: Combat Expertise
2. Rogue 2 Evasion
Rogue talent: Combat Trick: Two-Weapon Fighting
3. Rogue 3 Danger sense +1, Finesse training, Sneak attack +2d6
Feat: Combat Reflexes
4. Rogue 4 Debilitating injury, Uncanny dodge
Rogue talent: Weapon Training – Kukri
5. Hunter 1 Animal companion, Animal focus, Nature training, Orisons, Wild Empathy
Feat: Boon Companion
6. Hunter 2 Track, Precise companion: Outflank
7. Hunter 3 Hunter Tactics,
Teamwork feat: Pack Flanking
Feat: Accomplished Sneak Attacker
8. Hunter 4 Improved Empathic link
9. Hunter 5 Woodland stride
Feat: Realistic Likeness
10. Hunter 6
Teamwork feat: Precise Strike
11. Hunter 7 Bonus trick
Feat: Paired Opportunists
12. Hunter 8 Second Animal Focus, Swift Tracker


Derklord wrote:
Scott Wilhelm wrote:
Quick Dirty Trick, which lets you do it as an Attack Action
No no no, it's not an "attack action", it's in place of a melee attack. That's a very important distinction - if it were an attack action, it would still require a standard action to use, and not work with AoOs of rull attacks.

Your language does seem to be more precise than mine, but Dirty Trick Feats are as good as I said they are, according to you, maybe even better.

Derklord wrote:
Scott Wilhelm wrote:
But Shatter Defenses also requires an Attack Action
Also 'no', it requires a hit, i.e. a successful attack roll, not an action.

Actually, it doesn't technically require an action at all! It is an effect that is added onto any kind of attack with your chosen weapon. The thing is, though, I'm giving my advice in the context of the OP's character.

The OP would have spent the previous round as a Full Round Action using Dazzling Display and only on the next round 2 weapon fighting, making his opponent Flatfooted with the first attack then scoring Unarmed Strike Damage on the 2nd Attack of the Second Round. Or, as he was planning, just 2 weapon fighting until one of his Kukris score a Crit, using Martial Dominance to Intimidate his foe, then the next attack would trigger Shatter Defenses, and only then would the next Attack enjoy Sneak Attack Damage.

He does have another way to lock in Sneak Attack Damage--Gang Up--but if in this scenario he were able to use Gang Up, he probably wouldn't need Shatter Defenses in the first place since he'd he'd be getting his SAD that way. Another part of my advice is having a few different ways of locking in your Sneak Attack Damage, and while my language could have been more precise, I stand behind my choice of words in the context of the advice I was giving to the OP, which was that since he was already taking Gang Up and therefore Combat Expertise, he should also take Improve Feint and Improved Dirty Tricks, so that if he couldn't achieve Flanking, he could just Feint as a Move Action and get Sneak Attack as a Standard Action (wash, rinse, and repeat), and if he for some reason could do neither, then play a Dirty Trick to Blind his opponent--Deafen him too if he has Blindsight or something--and get Sneak Attack Damage that way.

Derklord wrote:
Scott Wilhelm wrote:
Actually for locking in the Sneak Attack Damage by either Shatter Defenses or Quick, Greater Dirty Trick, I'd want to maximize my Attacks/round, which is why I recommended a Natural Attack build in the first place (That was you, right?).
Derklord wrote:
Problem with natural attack rogue is that you don't get d2d on more than one type (two at 11th level).

Actually, I don't understand what you are saying, here. d2d?


Slyme wrote:

I played a URogue 4 / Hunter 7 in PFS that turned into an absolute beast in combat using 2 keen kukri.

4 levels of URogue gets you dex to damage, weapon finesse, and debilitating injury, etc.

Hunter gets you the strongest animal companion in the game and free shared teamwork feats with it. (I chose a tiger, very strong combat companion) Plus it is full BAB, so you will hit more often.

Take Outflank, Pack Flanking, Paired Opportunist, Precise Strike, boon companion, accomplished sneak attacker, TWF.

By level 11 you will be doing 3-4 attacks per round with a 15-20 crit range, your tiger will be doing claw/claw/bite/grab/rake/rake. Any time either of you scores a crit it will provoke an AoO from the other...you have control over your own flanking partner, who you don't even need to be opposite of thanks to Pack Flanking, you get a +4 instead of +2 if you both threaten the same target...you will almost always be doing 4d6 SA damage, and your tiger will get 1d6...basically, if you get a full round attack on something it will die before you finish all your dice rolling.

** spoiler omitted **

Hunter + Teamwork Feats is very exciting, but I think the OP's GM is not allowing him to take Hypbrid Classes. That being said, there are a lot of other readers than the OP.

Grand Lodge

Scott Wilhelm wrote:
Derklord wrote:
d2d
Actually, I don't understand what you are saying, here. d2d?

Dex to Damage


Derklord wrote:
Scott Wilhelm wrote:
Actually for locking in the Sneak Attack Damage by either Shatter Defenses or Quick, Greater Dirty Trick, I'd want to maximize my Attacks/round, which is why I recommended a Natural Attack build in the first place (That was you, right?).
Derklord wrote:
Problem with natural attack rogue is that you don't get d2d on more than one type (two at 11th level).
I wrote:
Actually, I don't understand what you are saying, here. d2d?

I think I figured it out: d2d = Dex-to-Damage? (Ninja'd by Syries!)

Yes, that is a problem. But since so many of the ways I was talking about locking in your SAD involve expending 1 or 2 attacks, I still think a Natural Attack build goes well with a Sneak Attack Build to maximize the number of attack/round that get Sneak Attack Damage.

For a Natural Attack, Sneak Attack build, especially in the OP's campaign, it would be quite a weird character. I don't think he's allowed to play a Tengu, so to get his Natural Attacks, he's have to do weird stuff: take 2 levels in Alchemist to get Feral Mutagen, then take 2 levels in Barbarian to get a Gore Attack, then take a level in White Haired Witch to get a Hair Attack, then take your levels in Snakebite Striker and Ninja or Rogue to get your SAD, throwing in Accomplished Sneak Attacker, maybe Precise Strike through a level in Cavalier, then whatthehell, a level in Greensting Scorpion Magus thrown in! I guess he could get some magic items in lieu of class abilities for some of his natural attacks, if the GM provides for that possibility in his world.

I like Natural Attack builds, but I wasn't really advising one for the OP.


Derklord wrote:
I think you also forget the half-dex on the off-hand attack.­...

No, i did not :-) that part i knew and i didnt include the "double costs for the enchantment" since there is no enchantment on the weapons i used for the calculations (not really sure, which enchantment you are talking about).

Derklord wrote:
The "Rogue = thief" thing is one of the most overused and annoying cliches of roleplaying games, anyway.

Well, as i said, this is the first time i play Pathfinder as an actual P&P role playing game. So far, all i know is that the Pathfinder society specifically hired me for scouting and trap disarming and that i come from a somewhat shadowy background being Ex-Szarni and even if the "Rogue Thief" may be a fantasy trope, i dont see why playing as such is such a big problem for you. Is this really some "good role players play like me"-stuff you are pulling on me here?

Slyme wrote:
I played a URogue 4 / Hunter 7 in PFS that turned into an absolute beast in combat using 2 keen kukri.

I think this sounds absolutely great and a lot of fun to play. Unfortunately, with my choice of attribute distribution and race, i won't be able to go that direction. But in case my rogue croaks i shall certainly take that build under consideration.

Seing that the rogue cap stone is not that impressing, i was considering dipping into some other classes anyway - even though i am having quite a hard time to decide for anything :-)

Grand Lodge

If you are allowed Hybrid classes I would recommend these two dips:

You could dip 2 levels of Snakebite Brawler to boost your early BAB and get TWF with just one kukri (saving Money to enchant two weapons)

Urban Bloodrager Barbarian could also be an interesting 1 level dip for more Dex and easier acess to 1level bloodrager wands like Shield, Long Arms, Infernal Healing and Mage Armor)
Bloodlines like Kython and Fey gives an additional debuff on crits.

The OutSlug Style feat chain gives you 10 ft. 5ft-steps and Lunge. If you cast long arms on yourself that gives you a threat-range of 15ft on your turn plus 10ft. movement to full attack.
There is a ninja trick to grant a style feat you can use to get the chain going earlier.

The Press to the wall feat is another option to consider to make flanking easier. Especially if you can fly and use the Ground as flanking partner.

If you keep to your original plan with intimidate and Shatter defences, then a 3 level dip in Antipaladin will make ALL monsters without 10ft. vulnerable to your Intimidates (Aura of Cowardice)


*Khan* wrote:
The OutSlug Style feat chain gives you 10 ft. 5ft-steps and Lunge.

But... outslug style only works with weapons of the "close" group, right? Is that why i should get Brawler's Flurry with only 1 Kukri?


St0nemender wrote:
i didnt include the "double costs for the enchantment" since there is no enchantment on the weapons i used for the calculations (not really sure, which enchantment you are talking about).

Not yet, but there will be. Enchanting two weapons means your weapon bonus is about 1 lower that if you had used a single weapon (even more later on).

St0nemender wrote:
even if the "Rogue Thief" may be a fantasy trope, i dont see why playing as such is such a big problem for you.

Because a) way too many people see the name "Rogue" and think the character must be some sort of criminal and at least borderline evil, and b) almost every time there is some inter-party trouble and a Rogue is involved, it's because the player insisted on playing a character that works against the party (e.g. stealing from party members because "my character is a thief, so that's what he does"; or even stealing from the king/aristocrat/whatever who employs the party, with the same rationale). I don't know enough about your character to make a judgement, but it is something to be wary about. Playing a wanton thief in a party with a Paladin is is asking for inter-party friction - unless the thief reforms because he realizes that travelling with the party is more profitable which it actually is considering how wealth is quasi-tied to character level.

The important thing to always remember is that the player makes every single decision, and is never "forced" by his character to act in a certain way. Actions don't have to be based on some set-in-stone backstory, not only because peiople don't usually act 100% consistent, but also because the experiences made during the actual play can and should influence the character. Your thief may not be into riding a horse on an open battlefield at 1st level, but at a later point in the adventuring career, why not?

St0nemender wrote:
But... outslug style only works with weapons of the "close" group, right? Is that why i should get Brawler's Flurry with only 1 Kukri?

If you dip into Brawler, you might as well use a waveblade, which is basically a kukri only better (Brawler is automatically proficient with it). It would be possible to use any (non-exotic) melee weapon with Versatile Design, but there's really no reason to (unless you want reach).


Scott Wilhelm wrote:
Your language does seem to be more precise than mine, but Dirty Trick Feats are as good as I said they are, according to you, maybe even better.

Oh, I wasn't actually debating your points, but the language you used. "Attack action" is a very specific thing in Pathfinder, and an extremely common source of confusion (cf. just about any Vital Strike discussion ever). Both Quick Dirty Trick and Shatter Defenses are not actions of their own, but conditional/triggered abilities that work as part of an existing action.

Scott Wilhelm wrote:
Yes, [dex to damage] is a problem. But since so many of the ways I was talking about locking in your SAD involve expending 1 or 2 attacks, I still think a Natural Attack build goes well with a Sneak Attack Build to maximize the number of attack/round that get Sneak Attack Damage.

I don't necessarily disagree, although I'm not sure Rogue is the best class for that (not the least because the more attacks you have, the more desperately you want pounce). Agathiel Vigilante or Beastmorph Vivisectionist Alchemist would be good single class options independent of race, plus a bunch of multiclass options. Like four levels in Weretouched Shifter, followed by Scout Rogue. Accomplished Sneak Attacker means you're just 1d6 SA behind, and you've gained 5 primary natural attacks and pounce.

Grand Lodge

St0nemender wrote:
*Khan* wrote:
The OutSlug Style feat chain gives you 10 ft. 5ft-steps and Lunge.
But... outslug style only works with weapons of the "close" group, right? Is that why i should get Brawler's Flurry with only 1 Kukri?

Yeah, I forgot to mention you need to use a closeweapon like waveblade instead, as Derklord mentioned.

And Snakebite Brawler gives 1d6 sneak attack at level 1.


Taking in a lot of the suggestions i have decided to focus on the tracker/trap finding path of the role. Seeing that the rogue gets many of the really great abilities in the first 4 levels and the capstone isnt really that impressive i decided to go with Slyme's concept of dipping into Hunter.

So this is my Vishkanya Fanglord (i basicly had to stick to Vishkanya because we had already started the campaign):

10 / 19 / 12 / 14 / 13 / 8

Character Progression:

Rogue (1) Finesse Training; Sneak Attack +1D6; trapfinding; [Feat] Two-Weapon-Fighting
Rogue (2) Evasion; [Rogue Talent] Weapon Training --> Weapon Focus (Kukri)
Rogue (3) Danger Sense +1; finesse Training; Sneak Attack +1D6; [Feat] Combat Expertise
Rogue (4) Debilitating Injury; Uncanny Dodge; [Rogue Talent] Combat Trick --> Accomplished Sneak Attacker
Hunter (1) Animal companion; Animal focus; Nature training; Orisons; Wild Empathy; [Feat] Boon Companion
Hunter (2) Track; Precise companion: Outflank 
Hunter (3) Hunter Tactics; [Teamwork feat] Pack Flanking; [Feat] Dazzling Display
Hunter (4) Improved Empathic Link
Hunter (5) Woodland Stride; [Feat]: Improved Critical Strike
Hunter (6) [Teamwork feat] Precise Strike
Hunter (7) Bonus Trick; [Feat] Violent Display
Hunter (8) Second Animal Focus; Swift Tracker;
Hunter (9) [Teamwork feat] Seize the Moment;[Feat]Improved Two-Weapon Fighting
Hunter (10) Raise animal Companion
Hunter (11) Speak with Master;[Feat] Combat Reflexes

What do you think? Is this viable?

Grand Lodge

Accomplished Sneak Attacker at level 3 will be a bit of a waste for a few levels, it cannot raise your sneak attack above half your level, so you won't get any benefit from it until level 6.

I would swap Dazzling Display to your combat trick feat, and take Accomplished Sneak Attacker at 7.

You may also want to work in a 5th level of unchained rogue to get the skill unlock for Intimidate since you are taking Dazzling Display and Violent Display. It will allow you to push them beyond just shaken into frightened, panicked, etc. Your animal companion will lose out on 1 level in exchange, but it is probably worth it if you are going to be using a lot of intimidation. (If I were building it I would probably do 4 URogue, 3 Hunter, 1 URogue, Hunter the rest of the way.)

You may also want to push combat reflexes earlier in the build, with your high dex and crit range, more AoOs are always a plus.

Side note: Use the stat boost to raise your companions Int to 4+ and teach it combat reflexes, pairs extremely well with Paired Opportunists...you can end up chaining attacks back and forth from each of you scoring crits...turns your duo into a meat grinding blender of death.

As for viability, I can say my very similarly built PFS character is more than viable. If I get a full round attack on something (that can be sneak attack/crit), it dies. I've only had one thing survive a full round attack from me and my tiger, and that was a full health BBEG, and I rolled like garbage (It died against the next attack from someone else in the party)


Slyme wrote:
Accomplished Sneak Attacker at level 3 will be a bit of a waste for a few levels, it cannot raise your sneak attack above half your level, so you won't get any benefit from it until level 6.

It's actually rounded up, so accomplished sneak attacker will kick in at lvl5. The point is that i dont actually plan on unsing Dazzling Display, it is more or less a prerequisite for violent display later on. Since the lvl5 feat has to be boon companion i would otherwise have to delay accomplished sneak attacker to lvl7.

I agree that going for 5 levels of rogue is a good idea. That will also give me another D6 of sneak attack dmg :-).

Hm. I wonder if i actually need combat expertise at all. Maybe i should just swap combat reflexes for combat expertise. I though combat expertise was a prerequisite for something, but i cant figure our what. Maybe i wanted to go down the feint tree...

Grand Lodge

Combat expertise is a prerequisite for Pack Flanking which you definately want.


*Khan* wrote:
Combat expertise is a prerequisite for Pack Flanking which you definately want.

There it is! Thanks!

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