Two-weapon fighting or not


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So I'm building a knife master halfling rogue for PFS and I'm not sure whether to do two dagger fighting or have one dagger and a free hand for other actions. The rogue will have a twin brother (who is also a rogue) played by a friend. we plan on taking teamwork feats for extra flanking aid and the twin will be doing two-weapon fighting. I'm just not sure what kind of bonuses I can get from not two-weapon fighting. For clarity both rogues are unchained.

Tl;Dr is one-weapon fighting just as good as two-weapon fighting for a rogue


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Two-weapon fighting works fine, but if you don't want to do it a cool alternative is to use two-handed finessable weapons. Due to the way the Unchained Rogue's finesse training is worked, you get 1.5x dex modifier when wielding a two-handed finessable weapon such as the elven curve blade or the elven branched spear. Remember that adjusting your grip is a free action, and you can carry a two-handed weapon in one hand, so if you need to grab and use something it's easy to do.


The obvious bonus from not using TWF is not taking TWF's -2 attack penalty, and having a bunch of feats to do whatever with. Whether that's enforcer/sap master/sap adept/shatter defences, or a combat maneuver, or building to circling mongoose is up to you.

Grand Lodge

Two-Weapon Fighting is doable for a rogue, just not as early as a full-BAB character could so for a couple of levels I'd suggest it is a safer bet to stick to a single weapon, especially being provided flank is no guarantee and teamwork being denied by opposite setup.

If required, the character has to be self-reliant.


One thing to consider is if you want your character to be different from your twin. If you want to buy into the whole identical twin idea where people have a hard time telling you apart, using the same combat is probably better. If on the other hand you want to be slightly different using a different combat style would be appropriate.

Two weapon fighting is not the only effective fighting style for rouge. If you are going for teamwork feats you could use a rapier and take Seize the Moment. Use a rapier and feed each other AoO. Between his extra attacks and your 15-20 threat range you will both be getting a lot of attacks. This will require a couple of feats so will not come on board until higher level, but the end result will be worth it. That is only on combat style you could go for.


Ignas,

For your build: twin Halfling Rogues that use Teamwork Feats, when I think Teamwork Feats, I think Attacks of Opportunity, and when it comes to Attacks of Opportunity. 2 Weapon Fighting can be fine, but I think your emphasis should be on those Attacks of Opportunity.

Dasrak just clued me into the Estoc. 2d4 Damage, Threat Range of 18-20, 1 handed, and Finesseable. Exotic, but I think worth it. If not an Estoc, I'd be advising an Elven Curved Blade that is 2 handed and does 0.5 Damage more.

So, There are the basics:
Exotic Wealpon proficiency Estoc
Weapon Focus Estoc
Combat Reflexes
Power Attack
Risky Striker
Furious Focus
Improved Critical
Crit Focus

The actual Teamwork Feats I'm thinking for starters:
Seize the Moment or Outflank
Paired Opportunist
Broken Wing Gambit
Precise Strike (and extra 1d6 Sneak Attack Damage)

So, you'll be scoring lots of Attacks of Opportunity. You'll be giving them to each other. You will both get Attacks of Opportunity whenever either of you is Attacked, and whenever either of you scores a Crit., and you'll be Threatening on a 15-20!

If you aren't 2 weapon Fighting, you can wield the Estoc 2 handed, so you might get away without EWP, but the Estoc is only Finesseable if you can wield it 1 handed.

You'll be wanting to do lots of Sneak Attack Damage. How do you want to lock that Damage in?

Gang Up (You are Flanking as long as you are threatening the same opponent)

Dirty Tricks: Improved Dirty Trick, Greater Dirty Trick, Quick Dirty Trick. You can make your opponents Blind, which means no Dex Mod to AC, which means no Sneak Attack Damage. If you run into an opponent with Blind Fighting or Blindsight or something, well, Dirty Tricks can make them Deaf, too. That'll do'em!.

3 levels in Bard with the Flame Dance Archetype: only 1 twin needs the Bard levels. Song of Fiery Gaze allows all allies to see through Fire and Smoke. So, then carry around an Eversmoking Bottle--makes everyone Blind, everyone expcept your Allies that hear your song, that is.

Feinting: I'm already advising Broken Wing Gambit which requires 5 Ranks in Bluff. Take Improved Feint, and you can Feint as a Move Action. Dip 3 levels in Brawler with the Snakebite Striker Archetype, and you can Feint while you Move.

Dip a level in Arcanist: there is an Arcane Exploit called Dimensional Slide which is a 10' Teleport that can be done as part of a Move and does not End your turn like Dimension Door Does. with only 1 level in Arcanist, you can do it 4/day. This is a really nice way to achieve Flanking. Also, even 1 level in Arcanist you can use 0 and first level spells, and you can use any Wizard or Sorcerer Magic Wand without having to make a UMD roll, and I like that a lot. When you can afford one, you can get a Wand of Greater Invisibility--another way to lock in SA Damage. You can get a Wand of Flying for those opponents with Tremorsense.

Shatter Defenses: This is an expensive option. It has a prerequisite, Dazzling Display. You might want to take Cornudgeon Smash, which only works with Blunt Weapons, but it makes you opponents actually Flatfooted, not just denied their Dex Mods to AC. There is a Feat called Sap Master that doubles your Sneak Attack Damage Dice, but it only works when you are using blunt weapons to inflict Nonlethal Damage.

So,
should 1 of your brothers 2 weapon fight, say with Estoc and Kukri? Sure, but I don't think that should be the emphasis of your character. But maybe it would make sense to go in some completely other direction. Like going with mobile melee characters! Dip a level in Monk, Master of Many Styles and take Panther and Ascetic style Feats. Panther Style Feats give you extra Free Action Unarmed Attacks up to your Wisdom Mod. Ascetic Style will let you apply Unarmed Strike Feats to any weapon in the Monk Fighter Weapon Group. Use Temple Swords, which are Tripping Weapons. Tripping with a Size Small character? Well, you are already taking Teamwork Feats: Take Harder they Fall, which removes the Size Limit on Tripping. Take Agile Manevers and Coordinated Maneuvers. Take Vicious Stomp. If that's the way you get multiple attacks, you should probably 2 hand your Critting weapon or use Weapon and Shield.


Rogues love it when someone uses Shatter Defenses, but it is not optimal for the rogue to do the shattering. With a partner, you can mitigate that downside since you are helping your partner.

Two weapon rogues usually use a pair of the same weapon to reduce the cost of Weapon Focus. You still need a fair number of feats to gain iterative and to eliminate some of the TWF penalty.

Above, AoOs were talked about. If you intend to go that path, I suggest making your weapon Fortuitous. This will give you an iterative on your AoO. It does consume one of yout AoOss, so you need Combat Reflexes to make use of it.

Being a halfling, you have a strength penalty. Otherwise I would suggest consideration of being a strength rogue rather than a dexterity rogue. You improve your ability to hit, and the damage dealt (especially on a crit). You don't loose on AC since you would wear heavier armor. You do loose some on your reflex save, but not that much. You could still do it, and be the "opposite" of your twin: strength vs. dexterity. It can also mitigate your combined carrying capacity.

/cevah


If you are doing TWF with a partner for teamwork feats, look at using kukri instead of daggers.

Outflank and Paired Opportunist both trigger off critical hits, so you want weapons with a higher crit rate.


Get a glove of storing and you can have the best of both worlds.


Rather than an estoc and power attack youd be better off with TWF as the penalty of power attack quickly becomes equal to and then greater than TWF. It would be better to have a lower penalty and more attacks, especially with AoO fishing as you want more and more chances to get and give free crits.

I am personally a fan of shattered defenses as many will have ways to intimidate quickly at mid levels, and a cruel weapon means retaliation back at you will be almost none. As you will be a rogue you can look into skill unlock intimidate, making the action investment into dazzling display completely worth its value.


Thank you all for great ideas my friend will definitely like the rapier stuff when I tell him otherwise a few of the suggestions dont work for knife masters but still work for the other twin who is a counterfeit mage so dipping lvl for more magic would fit his build and alot of those feats mentioned I did not think about will post updated builds for both twins when I get a chance


IgnasAilurus wrote:
So I'm building a knife master halfling rogue for PFS and I'm not sure whether to do two dagger fighting or have one dagger and a free hand for other actions.
Knife Master forfeits trapfinding, and you're not a caster, so you're generally not going to be doing much with the other hand. (And you'll probably have Quick Draw anyway.)
Quote:
The rogue will have a twin brother (who is also a rogue) played by a friend. we plan on taking teamwork feats for extra flanking aid and the twin will be doing two-weapon fighting.
Unless you're playing PFS modules in a home-game setting, you cannot expect to always be playing with the same other characters.I'm just not sure what kind of bonuses I can get from not two-weapon fighting. For clarity both rogues are unchained.As martials, rogues work best with multiclass seasoning. In the case of halfling uRogue, the ability to dex-rage (via dipping Urban barbarian or bloodrager) jacks both your attack bonus, damage (after 3rd in uRogue), and AC.
Quote:
Tl;Dr is one-weapon fighting just as good as two-weapon fighting for a rogue

Absolutely not. You must hit for your Debilitating Injury to trigger and discombobulate your opponent. No matter how well-built your character, you're going to miss a fair bit of the time at low level just because you rolled for crap.

Let's say you'd miss on a 5 or less with a standard-action (meaning you're pretty awesome for a low-level squirt), or 7 or less while TWF'ing (to account for the -2 penalty). In this example, you're 75% to connect with a standard, and 87.75% to connect with at least one TWF attack.

But let's suppose the odds are worse for you, and you're missing on a 10 or less with the standard, or a 12 or less while TWF'ing. Your connection chances are 50% and 64% respectively. Going from half to almost two-thirds is really quite good.

Moral of the story: always TWF if you can.

Debilitating Injury -- unless you have a clear reason not to (for example, you're attempting capture a fleeing NPC), select ''disoriented'' every time. The goal of every rogue with puny hitpoints and lousy fort-save is to get his opponent into the situation of needing back-to-back 20s to hit him. (In fact, simply being unhittable is a viable strategy, and halfling rogues can keep well ahead of the AC curve with fighting defensively exploits.)


Cevah wrote:
Two weapon rogues usually use a pair of the same weapon to reduce the cost of Weapon Focus.

That, and for the purposes of gaining dex-to-damage at 3rd in uRogue. (As the halfling, the OP is likely strongly inclined to minmax dexterity, and I agree: it should be at least a 15>17 at 1st.)

Another problem with variant weapons is that rogues, if straight-classed, do not receive martial weapon proficiency (*cough* kukri), and most melee weapons cannot also be thrown sans penalty. A Knife Master halfling with the River Rat trait is doing (1d3+1)+(stuff)+(Xd8 sneak) with daggers, ranged and thrown. His weapon weighs 1 lbs, and is easily concealable.

STR- 10 or 8
DEX+ 17 (raise 4th, and 12th+manual)
CON: 12
INT: 10 or 12 (halfling, 15,15,12,12,12,10 20pt array)
WIS: 12
CHA+ 17 (and raise 8th)

racial trait: Fleet of Foot
character traits: Accelerated Drinker, River Rat
01 (any dex-rage barb or blood archetype), Two Weapon Fighting
02 uRogue1 [Weapon Finesse]
03 uRogue2 [combat trick: Quick Draw], Extra Rage
04 uRogue3 [melee dex>damage:dagger], DEX>18
05 uRogue4 or (dex-rager)2 or Fighter1, Accomplished Sneak Attacker, or FEAT(g)

Equipment: Blinkback Belt, +1/Furious dagger, various cheap wands (e.g Comprehend Languages, Longstrider, Mage Armor, CLW, etc) to UMD, various cheap potions to slam with the Drinker trait.

Low-level tactics: Always be mindful that you're not a dwarf take built to take massive abuse. Avoid situations (such as tangling with a reach monster) where you'll get your head ripped off if you whiff a couple times in a row and your allies are AWOL because the plan went pear-shaped. ...I dunno, maybe talk to the monster first? You have a great charisma bonus and eight or nine skill points each rogue level, more than enough to keep all of Diplomacy, Perception, and Sense Motive maxed, with that being less than half your skill-load. And remember that bribes are ofter cheaper than the cost of consumables. Many monsters can be bribed with a piece of food.


Ok so met up with friend who will play the counterfeit mage rogue and finalized our build or at least early levels

So for my rogue Arlin
Halfling race Knife master archetype with profession smuggler for flavor
Str 5
DeX 20
Con 10
Int 12 (13 at lvl 4)
Wis 10
Cha 16

Faction The Exchange

Traits anatomist(combat) and smuggler(faction)

Lvl 1 unchained rogue
Feat combat reflexes

Lvl 2 unchained rogue
Rogue trait underhanded

Lvl 3 unchained rogue
Feat well prepared
Finesse weapon dagger

Lvl 4 unchained rogue
Rogue talent deft palm

Lvl 5 unchained rogue
Feat combat expertise
Rogue edge slight of hand

Lvl 6 unchained rogue
Rogue talent combat trick
Bonus feat gang up

Lvl 7 unchained rogue
Feat outflank

My friends rogue Merthur
Halfling race Counterfeit mage archetype really want to use magic with out being a real spell caster
Str 8
Dex 18
Con 10
Int 14
Wis 10
Cha 16

Faction unknown

Traits reactionary(combat) and dangerously curious(magic)

Lvl 1 unchained rogue
Feat combat expertise

Lvl 2 unchained rogue
Rogue talent minor magic

Lvl 3 unchained rogue
Feat extra rogue talent
Rogue talent major magic
Finesse weapon rapier

Lvl 4 unchained rogue
Rogue talent signature wand

Lvl 5 unchained rogue
Feat bookish rogue

Lvl 6 unchained rogue
Rogue talent combat trick
Bonus feat gang up

Lvl 7 unchained rogue
Feat outflank

And thats that. Things dont start going till after lvl 4 but we both have to set up our personal builds before teamwork. I'm open to changing my first and second feat. Also gear wise I will have pick pockets outfit and spring loaded wrist sheaths. Friends rogue is harder to work around cause his is more demanding of rogue talents and feats to be able to cast more spells on the fly. My build is focused on smuggling things in and suprising enemies when things go southward. As always I'm happy to receive advice and will answer questions if need be. Also we chose to forgo two-weapon fighting for extra feats to team up with so that's solved.


IgnasAilurus wrote:

Str 5

DeX 20
Con 10
Int 12 (13 at lvl 4)
Wis 10
Cha 16

Never pay 17 point-buy for a starting 18, and then not raise it religiously. It costs you four points to raise a starting 17 (cost 13) to an 18 (cost 17), but you could have received that bump for free at 4th, while instead buying Int up for only one extra point at character-creation. You're just butchering your point-buy allocation (leaving yourself with 10s in the two stats used for the two most important saving-throws, as well as hit points and Perception checks.

See the build I submitted in my previous post above, and compare: You're paying 17 build points (out of 20) to get a racially-bumped dex of 20. Mine paid 7 points for a 15 racially bumped to a 17, then rage-bumped to a 21. --Relatively, it has *ten* extra build points to spread around, has a higher combat dexterity, and has only one fewer rogue levels. Rogues are martials; multiclass for fun, profit, fort-save, HP, and martial weapon proficiencies.

If you're comfortable dumping Str to 5, then try....

STR- 5 (-4)
DEX+ 19 (13)
CON: 14 (5) ...halfling, 17,14,14,14,7,7, 20pt array)
INT: 7 (-4)
WIS: 14 (5)
CHA+ 16 (5)

...for some ridonculous bonuses in the attributes you care about (e.g., compared to the build submitted could be dex-raging to 23 at 1st, getting +2hp/level, +2 or more to all your saves and all but Int skills, etc).

"But my INT is too low!", I hear you complaining. Well, about that....

Quote:

Lvl 5 unchained rogue

Feat combat expertise
Rogue edge slight of hand

Lvl 6 unchained rogue
Rogue talent combat trick
Bonus feat gang up

Note that Gang Up requires three people threatening the target to function. Ask yourself how often that's likely to happen. I see two likely scenarios: one in which the target immediately dies, and another in which one or two Con10 melee rogues immediately croak when a built-to-take-abuse target pops their heads off like dandelions, picking on them because they're the closest, because they wanted to be.

Low-levels is mickey-mouse silliness & salad-days until you meet your first reach-monster who does 25-a-tap, and s#!% suddenly gets real when you realize your 5th-level Con10 d8 martial class PFS character only has 26hp, which is probably a lot less than the same-level party wizard. (If your Con10 rogue's fighting defensively or full-def AC is not at or near 35, you're in trouble.)

You appear to have no other reason for taking Combat Expertise as a prerequisite, so you can save yourself 6 build points and a 4th-bump dashing your brains on the rocks along with strength at character-creation. --You're a rogue; you'll still be getting six skill points per level as the dumbest frog-sticker in the shire.

Advice for all halfling melee rogues: go to Nethys and do a search for every widget granting bonuses to fighting defensively. Make it work for you, and you'll then and only then be able to breath free to be the tumble & stab machine you envisioned at creation. Being unhittable is awesome. I.e., you could desperately and futilely attempt to make a bunch of teamwork feats and herding cats work, or you could ask the GM, "Take your AoO, and please don't roll back-to-back 20s!" while moving around your opponent at leisure to knife him in the puckered starfish.


Slim Jim thanks for the advice but I will keep my build there's at minimum 5 players at my pfs table not counting the gm so gang up is viable for me and let's me and my friend benefit for both outflank and teamwork feats that require us to be next to each other.also my rogue is intended to shine outside of combat when their profession comes into play aka walking through air port security with 10+ weapons and just leaving an extra 5 more like its nothing hence why I will be getting gear for hiding stuff on me and increasing my DeX. And as for my friend he is new to pathfinder as a whole so I'm letting him learn and play at his pace and enjoyment so as much as I want him to be the trap sniffing and disarming rogue I want to team up with he's going for the wand master stuff. And for those who noticed yes our names are a play on Arthur and Merlin


If it isn't too late, would you consider changing race? If you make yourself Ratfolk instead of halflings you'll be able to use swarming at first level instead of having to take a feat to gain flanking. Considering that rogues can only trade a few rogue talents for feats, the savings is huge and available from level 1.


Unfortunately not ratfolk aren't available as a pathfinder society race


Leo Fire-Mane wrote:
Slim Jim thanks for the advice but I will keep my build there's at minimum 5 players at my pfs table not counting the gm so gang up is viable for me and let's me and my friend benefit for both outflank and teamwork feats that require us to be next to each other.also my rogue is intended to shine outside of combat...

Any rogue that doesn't dump his charisma is fantastic out of combat. Getting the rogue to shine *in* combat is the hard part. Why? Because they are easy to kill.. You've both done two things right, IMO: you've made your rogues dex-based small races.

But you can't go flouncing around with a 10 Con as a martial unless your AC is uncrackable.

Quote:
And as for my friend he is new to pathfinder as a whole so I'm letting him learn and play at his pace and enjoyment so as much as I want him to be the trap sniffing and disarming rogue I want to team up with he's going for the wand master stuff.

Fun be fun until the troll or the ogre tears your heads off at 3rd level. (3rd and 4th level are the worst in PFS, as they're when you find out that a build idea that is a murder-machine against 1 hit-die opponents with d6+3 weapons instead suddenly dies like a mouse when attacked by something with reach, eighty hitpoints, and dishing out 3d6+14 per swat. Because CR5 opponents are sometimes module bosses for 3rd-level parties.

Since you and your friend are working together, try this: explore how your martial characters at 3rd or 4th level could cooperate to deal with that ogre brute. You'll quickly realize that it'll be very difficult if not impossible. --This is the important thing that I'm trying to convey: rogues aren't always good in melee or even optimal in it, and frequently need to Plan B or C. Your knife guy can throw, with is OK, but you'll be doing 1d3-2 base damage with a strength of 5 sans sneak-attack bonus damage. Very often, a rogue can "nova" in the first round while opponents are flat-footed (so a rogue with TWF and Quick Draw can chuck two knives for 2x(1d4+2d6) or some such, but then will have difficultly achieving sneak-attacks (also note that the ogre brute is a barbarian with Uncanny Dodge, meaning he's not "surprised" in the first round). Your party might have a "professional" tank (e.g., full-plate dwarf) who can tangle toe-to-toe with the brute, but the enemy will be getting AoOs on you two should you try to move around to flank (you'll have nice Acrobatics scores, but trying to "tumble" through threatened zones versus CMD25 at 3rd-level is just drinking hemlock).

Rogues get a lot of hate on these forums because they are difficult to build, especially if straight-classed with a melee emphasis. In many respects, they are the hardest core class to play because they're jacks-of-all-trade. Sometimes you melee, sometimes you talk, sometimes you scout, sometimes you shoot, sometimes you UMD/cast (and you'll want to know the cheap spells on *every* caster's list, whereas the casters themselves only need to know those they're capable of casting). If you're not the party "faces", then others in the party might elect to jump straight into combat all the time (because murderhoboing is fun), limiting what you can do (e.g., your Diplomacy target is now "hostile", etc). Building to do X and then having to not do it is a facet many players find intolerable.

I just don't want to see you and your friend try to flank a troll in the wrong circumstances, and get stomped into halfling-sized furry manhole covers before Round 2. Be careful out there.


Leo Fire-Mane wrote:
And as for my friend he is new to pathfinder as a whole so I'm letting him learn and play at his pace and enjoyment so as much as I want him to be the trap sniffing and disarming rogue I want to team up with he's going for the wand master stuff.

Friends don't let friends play Rogues! Seriously though, Rogue is the worst possible class for a first-time player, I would strongly suggest playing something else first. The "trap sniffing and disarming rogue" is especially prone to being (neigh-)useless 99% of the time, which is not a pleasent experience, especially for a first-time player.

Slim Jim wrote:
In many respects, they are the hardest core class to play because they're jacks-of-all-trade.

In the "master of none", i.e. good-at-nothing, meaning of the phrase. Because the Rogue's problem is that they aren't good at many things, despited advertised so.


Leo Fire-Mane wrote:
also my rogue is intended to shine outside of combat when their profession comes into play aka walking through air port security with 10+ weapons and just leaving an extra 5 more like its nothing hence why I will be getting gear for hiding stuff on me and increasing my DeX.

I think you may be taking the wrong way to become the best smuggler, which is to simply boost a skill. A fat bonus is important, but sooner or later you'll realize what you need is more options rather than another +1.

Leo Fire-Mane wrote:
Traits anatomist(combat) and smuggler(faction)

The Anatomist trait isn't that great since it's only 1/4 as strong as a feat instead of 1/2. You could instead take a trait that improves your attack bonus by 1 while flanking, which would provide its benefit far more often than just +1 to confirm. The name of the trait is Militia, but there should be more than just one.

Smuggler is pretty good, but the trait that you really should be looking at is Slave Smuggler. It allows you to roll your own Stealth modifier to hide people in your cargo, which should basically be an auto-success as a small-sized dex rogue.
So now, you have the option to hide your whole party in barrels and bluff your way into the BBEG's castle.

I'd also consider taking the Power of Suggestion trait, maybe even in place of your Anatomist/Militia trait. You may make a Bluff check against a fixed DC to convince observers that what you are holding in your hands isn't actually what it is.
So instead of being limited to small-sized objects like daggers, you now have the option to simply walk on over with a big-ass glaive and call it a walking stick. And they'll believe you with a DC 20 bluff check.

Leo Fire-Mane wrote:

Str 5

DeX 20
Con 10
Int 12 (13 at lvl 4)
Wis 10
Cha 16

You really don't want Str 5. Both because of carrying capacity actually preventing you from smuggling all those weapons, and because the most common type of ability damage is Str dmg. You'll be unconscious in seconds the moment you get pricked by something venomous.

Con 10 is suicidal, and 16 Cha is pointless on a class that isn't Charisma based. I'd recommend taking the Student of Philosophy trait to key Bluff/Diplomacy off Intelligence normally, and dumping charisma fully. But you're pretty short on traits and feats at the moment.

Str 10
DeX 18
Con 14
Int 13
Wis 12
Cha 10

This would actually allow you to carry items, and presumably survive long enough to realize that constitution is important.


I also agree that with strength of 5 and con of 10 you're not going to have a great time. first time you're hit with strength damage poison you'll be making a new character. You're a coup de grace away from being very upset.

And yeah, you wont be able to wear armour and hold a weapon let alone 2 of them.


Wonderstell wrote:
You really don't want Str 5. Both because of carrying capacity actually preventing you from smuggling all those weapons...

For small races, a strength of 5 actually works a lot better than a strength of 7 or sometimes even 10 in a normal-sized race, because their armor and weapons are half-weight, and mundane equipment (clothes, weapon sheaths, provisions, etc) is quarter-weight. I.e., light-load for Str5 is 16lbs, 26lbs for Str8, and 33lbs for Str10. A halfling can get under 16 a lot easier than a strength-eschewing normie can get under 33.

Once you say you've purchased a Haversack, your GM will never pester you again about encumbrance unless you're attempting something truly ridiculous. With a Blinkback Belt, you don't need more than two daggers as a TWF.

Quote:
...and because the most common type of ability damage is Str dmg.
This dovetails back into my previous advice about rogues seeking to become unhittable (with fighting defensively exploits the best avenue for halflings); an integral component for this is Uncanny Dodge, which no dex-warrior should be without, as his touch-AC will depend on it.
Quote:
16 Cha is pointless on a class that isn't Charisma based.

It only costs a halfling 5 build points for a 16, and rogues get a lot of mileage out of the stat. (Even more if they're multiclassed rogue/paladin, which is one of my favorite halfling stacks, as then you can trash wisdom as a dump stat in consideration of paladin Divine Grace and fear-immunity. And having a nice attribute bonus to UMD is always handy when you need to wand up a Mage Armor for stellar touch-AC when incorporeal strength-drainers are flitting around.)

Silver Crusade

I thought I smelled rogue hate.

For one, unchained rogues are much, much better than the old rogues, and can be quite deadly in melee combat post level 4.

Just not as a TWF unless you are starting at a higher level. (TWF rogues can feint for themselves to get SA easily at higher levels)

Here is what you do-
be a unchained rogue
be a half-elf
get proficiency in elven curved blade
make elven curved blade your finesse weapon
have 18 dex
at level 3, you now have 1d10(1d8 for small)+6+2d6 for damage with sneak attack, and don't need to try to get full attacks.
grab a 14+ con to be able to take a hit or two.

minimum investment, you are, at levels pre 7-8, just about as tanky as any martial character, hit decently well, AND you got the skills to pay the bills.

I honestly recommend quick draw for rogues/ninjas, as winning initiative, then throwing weapons or launching arrows down range is a nice way to get some early sneak attack. YMMV

At level 4, you suddenly cannot be caught flat footed by invisible enemies (you'll love it when it comes up), AND you can, at your pleasure, give yourself a +4 AC, or +4 to hit as needed. With the small caveat that you have to hit your enemy with SA (not that hard, especially if you win initiative). Hard hitting enemy? -4 to attacks, high AC but not particularly scary enemy? -4 to AC.


rorek55 wrote:

I thought I smelled rogue hate.

For one, unchained rogues are much, much better than the old rogues, and can be quite deadly in melee combat post level 4.

Agreed

It is rather unhelpful to ask for advice to do something and be told how your group "should play properly".

After this much time anyone who can't find a half dozen paths to get a sneak attack in are the ones not playing properly, I'd say.

OP dont listen to the haters Rogues are fun and viable for sure. I only caution not to drop strength so low with a 0 con mod.


Just to back up the con-parade, yes you should have at least a 12 con. Every pathfinder player character should buy up con. The extra hp aren't extra, they are necessary. Con mod acts as a cushion against bad rolls/assigned average hp. Rogues aren't a high hp class to begin with, you need the padding from a con mod to keep you viable in melee. Especially if you draw the monsters attention by landing a sneak attack.

Preferably you'd have a 14 con. The extra +2 is huge. If you plan on spending your time in melee, your preferred class bonus should also go into HP. And toughness...isn't worth it. You have a lot of other things to do with feats and rogue talents, accomplish your goals first. A rogue doesn't get so many feats that you run out of things you want to do.


Since the OP is talking about daggers, and a rogue, and lots of people have been spouting all sorts of advice...let me spread a little cheese.

Pharasma has a Deific Obedience that provides a +2 bonus to hit with daggers. So if you don't mind spending a feat and being a worshiper of the Lady of Fate you can be better at stabbing things.


rorek55 wrote:
I thought I smelled rogue hate.
I'm not certain you were replying to me (your post just appeared after mine), but I love rogues (see roguish avatar chock full of situational ethics), and am one of the primary defenders of them in the forum. In fact, I'll play a core/chained rogue any day. Even a straight-class human (*shudder*). --You just have to be cognizant of their limitations, because otherwise you will very quickly have a dead rogue.
Cavall wrote:
It is rather unhelpful to ask for advice to do something and be told how your group "should play properly". After this much time anyone who can't find a half dozen paths to get a sneak attack in are the ones not playing properly, I'd say.

The problem isn't "getting" sneak-attack, it's getting TO the sneak-attack.

(Because his memory is hazy, Slim Jim now holds up 1d5 fingers for the number of times he has watched a low-level PFS rogue playing at his table contemplate a bit of "Eh, that may not be the best idea" input from his allies about not granting opponents AoOs to move into flanking when one's AC isn't the greatest -- and promptly get killed stone-cold-dead after ignoring said advice.)


Yeah tumblings a dex skill for a reason. Admittedly low level rogues need that flank more, it's often a smarter idea for the fighter to not face straight on to targets to allow flanks to be easier.

But that's life for a low level...anything really. Not many tricks to fall back on.

I've always said moment you can intimidate with skill unlock get a cruel weapon. The stacked penalties is like adding plate on. That's my preferred route, but there is a lot of other tricks.


Cavall wrote:
Admittedly low level rogues need that flank more, it's often a smarter idea for the fighter to not face straight on to targets to allow flanks to be easier.

Actually they need it less at low level, since the sneak-attack contribution is a smaller percentage portion of their potential damage, and the targets only have one or two hit-dice. Enjoying your dex-bonus to just shoot things in the face with a d8+0 19/20x2 crossbow bolt is often better, indeed much better, from the perspective of party resource management (read: your own life). E.g....

Scenario #1:
* rogue delays for fighter
* fighter moves in a half-circle to attack opponent
* rogue half-circles to flank and melee sneak-attack
* intelligent opponent, if it survives, attacks rogue with mediocre AC and lower HP.

Scenario #2:
* rogue shoots opponent not in melee
* fighter moves to attack opponent
* opponent, if it survives, attacks its only adjacent target, the fighter with high AC and lots of HP.
* rogue moves behind fighter and Aids Another or UMDs the fighter's loaned CLW wand on the fighter, or stays where he is and does something else situationally appropriate.

The second modus operandi is response-flexible, more likely anyway given low-level fighters with lousy move speeds, and manages attrition more effectively. The rogue gets sneak-attack on the first turn if the opponent is flat-footed, but otherwise doesn't try to force sneak-attack to happen. In PFS, both characters can spend two prestige-points (ideally after their first session) to grab a 1st-level wand without spending gold.

Silver Crusade

How does the rogue have mediocre AC? Why would he attack the rogue?

Lets compare that level 1 fighter and rogue. Assuming a combat oriented build for both.

Fighter-
Easy to assume an 18 strength
14 dex
14 con.

Grabs a great sword, and scale mail.

AC is 17, does 2d6+6 damage. 13 hp.

Rogue-
12 str
18 dex
14 con.

Grabs chain shirt and a shortsword.
AC is 18, does 1d6+2+1d6 damage, HP is 11.

Why on earth would said enemy target the rogue?

This dictum doesn't really change until around level 3, where the fighter can start to get heavier armor.


rorek55 wrote:

Lets compare that level 1 fighter and rogue....

Fighter-
Easy to assume an 18 strength
14 dex
14 con.

Grabs a great sword, and scale mail.
AC is 17, does 2d6+6 damage. 13 hp.

Or he could carry a tower-shield and have an AC five higher including the Defender of the Society trait. That way he, rather than the rogue, can afford to repeatedly trudge through AoOs setting up flanks for allies.
Quote:
Why on earth would said enemy target the rogue?

Because he might actually drop a lower-AC/lower-HP opponent before going down himself. If the opponent is evil and/or suicidal/crazy, the GM will probably run him that way, and try to "take someone with him". (If the GM is a nice guy, he'll tell you in advance that these guys are nasty, which means you'll have no one to blame when it goes pear-shaped.)

A non-min/maxed low-level fighter can easily optimize defense with just his tower-shield and a total-gimme trait to place many low-level opponents in the position of needing confirmed crits to hurt him. Rogues have fewer such options, and, because consumable costs will nickel-and-dime you in PFS, negating inbound damage as much as possible is sound policy. No combat without a time limit should be heedlessly rushed.

Quote:
This dictum doesn't really change until around level 3, where the fighter can start to get heavier armor.

3rd is when the PCs begin first encountering giant-class and other large opponents that don't go down immediately, and which can easily double-tap-to-neg-con the less-sturdy PCs. Murphy's Law now begins to weed out those who take inordinate risks. If 15s and 16s will hit you, eventually the enemy rolls sufficient quantity in a tight bunch, and if said enemy is dishing out 25 damage instead of 8, suddenly you're down 50hp at 3rd without intervening healing. Eating 8 damage twice at 1st-level means you take a nap. Eating 50 at 3rd means you might not be above neg-con. The fighter makes it because the enemy needed 18s or higher. The wizard makes because he had Mirror Image up, or was invisible. The paladin made it because he swift-LoH. The healer made it because she was wise enough to stand behind the tank. The melee rogue, otoh, blew his will-save to chase those 2x(+2d6) TWF sneak-attack dice in the wrong situation.

-- Of course this doesn't happen to every rogue because many players are just lucky and skate through life -- but the odds are higher, and the result, at least around here, is a forum with an elevated level of rogue-hate.

Silver Crusade

Tower shield scale mail fighter at level 1 will likely be ignored by any metagaming NPC.

But, the tower shield fighter at 1 has

21-22 AC

Rogue with a buckler has 19 AC. Thats fairly high at level 1, where most enemies have a +2-3 to hit.

I'm not seeing the huge variance in AC you are talking about. Diminishing returns start kicking in the closer to 5% to hit you get.

If you are talking about a rogue getting smacked for attacking an enemy in melee becuse the enemy rolled well on his to hit. This goes for ANY damage focused melee class. You might as well just tell people to either play a ranged class or go full tank.

At level 4, a fighter has a grand total of 6 HP above the rogue, assuming equal con, which isn't far fetched.

At level 4, a flanking rogue and give himself a +4 AC against a single enemy if he desires. Or even a +6.

Lets take an ogre brute, cr 6, a likely encounter for a hard fight at level 4.

Rogue has ~35 hp. Fighter would have around 40hp.

Rogue has about a 20-21 AC depending on a buckler or not. Fighter can have either a 19-20ish if wielding a two handed weapon, or a 24-25 if wielding a tower shield.

Neither want to take that 3d6+20 damage at +13 to hit.

On average, one hit won't down either. A crit kills both.

With an HP pool of 88, neither want to get into close combat with it. Even a barbarian wouldn't. They would. But they shouldn't. But if there is a barbarian or twohanded fighter infront of the (dumb as rocks) ogre, both are likely much easier to hit than the rogue, especially if that rogue is getting hits in. And they are all doing about the same damage.

The rogue could take offensive defense. Now, he flanks the ogre, has a to hit of ~+8, so hits on a 7 with flanking bonuses. Suddenly, the rogue has a +6 AC against this ogre everytime he does sneak attack. Above that of even the armored tower shielded fighter (unless he literally spends all his feats and money pumping AC).

Grand Lodge

rorek55 wrote:
The rogue could take offensive defense. Now, he flanks the ogre, has a to hit of ~+8, so hits on a 7 with flanking bonuses. Suddenly, the rogue has a +6 AC against this ogre everytime he does sneak attack. Above that of even the armored tower shielded fighter (unless he literally spends all his feats and money pumping AC).

Offensive Defence is Core Rogue only. Unchained Rogue got Debilitating Injury instead.

Silver Crusade

People don't allow old rogue talents? Thats just silly. Its not like doing so would cause harm. Or even people to think the rogue is good.

But eh, people seem to be set on not giving core barb temp hp thats lost first for some reason as well.

Still. My point stands. There are reliable ways for the rogue to make himself a harder to hit target than many others, even for NPCs that always seem to know who they should hit.


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rorek55 wrote:
(AC stuff)
Here's one thing you're overlooking: low-level rogues do not have Uncanny Dodge yet, and much of their AC is dexterity-based, and therefore AWOL when they're flatfooted -- and that can and will happen. The GM rolls a 19 for INIT and you a 4, his troll will tear your rogue new orifices while the fighter shrugs and enjoys losing only one or two points of AC from lost dex.
Quote:
Rogue with a buckler has....
I love me some bucklers -- all my rogues and barbarians have them, even if they TWF or two-hand. But I can convince almost none of the youngling padawan in PFS to use them. I just get a blank look. "Dude? Yer asking me to lower my attack-bonus?!" Well, yes I was, in an attempt to keep the number of new orifices down, but many just can't be convinced.
Quote:
At level 4, a fighter has a grand total of 6 HP above the rogue, assuming equal con, which isn't far fetched.

And he could be a halfling rogue/paladin/dex-rager/Fighter[Unarmed] with LoH level-advancement, Fey Foundling, Greater Mercy, Cautious Warrior, Crane Wing, etc., and have more AC, HP, and skills than he'll ever need.

-- Which is beside the point, which is that too many players don't build their rogues with enough AC and enough HP in the first place. To wit: the OP's build (which, to be fair, was nowhere as bad as The Legendary Suicidal Monk --the thread containing that should be read in its entirely, btw; it's one of the funniest things on the whole site).

I don't know why this is, just that it is is.

Just about every fighter build I see has decent CON and is walking in the thickest armor they can afford at every level. While some non-barbarians use a greatsword, I'd say that the majority of low-level fighters learn right quick that downgrading the weapon to a one-hander in order to strap on a heavy shield is a good idea, especially since it's a cheap piece of gear to make magical for a +3 bonus to AC.

But you'd be surprised how many human (or other medium-sized) strength-rogues I saw with an 18 or 20 Str, 15 Dex (grudgingly bought up for TWF), with peanut-shells spread to their other four stats except charisma which they dump, and who are wearing leather armor instead of a chainshirt because, hey, that saves 90gp at character-creation! So they head into play with a flatfoot AC of 12 and a total AC of 14. And they couldn't UMD a wand if you gave 'em a model with labeled push-buttons, or befriend an emaciated cat with tuna-fish smeared in their hair. The only thing the blindered players of these crippled characters could see was DPR.

<old man laconic drawl> Oh my god those guys died like mice in PFS.

It's not so bad now with Unchained being Paizo's basic knock-upside-yer-head *hint* to make d20 rogues dex-based. But you still have to survive to 4th to get the goodies.

~ ~ ~

*Khan* wrote:
rorek55 wrote:
The rogue could take offensive defense....
Offensive Defence is Core Rogue only. Unchained Rogue got Debilitating Injury instead.

The RAW-legal way for a uRogue to take Offensive Defense (or any other core rogue talent) is via Rogue Talent [Ninja Trick (rogue talent: XYZ)].

Silver Crusade

Fair point. I mistakenly assumed you were saying rogues could not do well defensively. Apologies for the mistake.

The point for the rogue, see, that's why I just shake my head at thr fact they tried to change/ban older rogue talents. Of which there were a nice selection of good ones.


rorek55 wrote:
I thought I smelled rogue hate.

It's not hate if it's backed up by the numbers. The discussion in this thread proves that building a Rogue that isn't in very high risk of dying and/or being useless isn't easy. If we were talking about for instance an unBarbarian, the advice would be "take a two-handed weapon, take Power Attack, and take Superstition". If Rogue were on the same level, the advice could be just as concise. Sadly, that doesn't work.

The issue isn't that Rogue can't be "quite deadly in melee combat", it's that a) you really need to know what you're doing, moreso than with other classes, and b) unless you really know what you're doing, the Rogue will have glaring weaknesses.

unRogue's problems:
1) d8 HD melee class with very little defensive abilities.
2) Weak Fortitude save
3) Weak Will save
4) Medium BAB with no attack roll bonus unless you've hit first.
5) Winning initiative and flanking just aren't enough to reliably trigger Sneak Attack.

Five things you need to work on. Debilitating Injury helps for #1 and #4, but suffers from #5. It's also not always easy getting both set up at the same time early on. To boot, the class does steer you towards TWF, with dex-based, high damage bonus, and even some bonus feats; as you've said yourself, not what a Rogue player should do.

rorek55 wrote:
The point for the rogue, see, that's why I just shake my head at thr fact they tried to change/ban older rogue talents. Of which there were a nice selection of good ones.

The problem with Offensive Defense is that it stacks with itself. If you hit three attacks with 5d6 SA each in one round, that's +15 AC. Emboldening Strike also stacks with itself, and is aviable to unRogue, but you could argue that since the class has the worst base saves a PC class can have, that's a good thing. I would certianly allow it as a GM, as would I allow Offensive Defense stacking on a cRogue.

Slim Jim wrote:
The RAW-legal way for a uRogue to take Offensive Defense (or any other core rogue talent) is via Rogue Talent [Ninja Trick (rogue talent: XYZ)].

Not only is it highly debatable if that works (for you, the list of Rogue Talents is the unchained one), no GM will let that fly.

rorek55 wrote:
Tower shield scale mail fighter at level 1 will likely be ignored by any metagaming NPC.

Not attacking the guy with the giant shield isn't metagaming, but common sense, i.e. I'd presume most intelligent creatures (that are familiar with shields) to do that.

Silver Crusade

1. d8 hit die- this is actually the "standard" health pool. I believe its the most common hit dice of the classes. Not a weakness.

2. true, but there are alot of classes with a weak fort save. drop a 14 in con and hope.

3. Same as barb/fighter/ranger etc... this is a wash, what's better you actually have a few options just in the class to help with it. Sure, you won't get human FCB superstitious levels, but you also won't resist that heal when you REALLY need it either. However, I think the rogue SHOULD have good will saves. So normally give them that in my games.

4. This is certainly a true one. However, you ARE the only class that gets dex to damage for free built in. Which also acts just like strength. Which means you can actually gain 1.5x dex to damage with two-handed finesse weapons. You also don't need to try and keep track of limited per day abilities (such as judgement or fervor spells) Debilitating injury is a godsend.

5. Its a dice game, if you are rolling bad, no class will help you unless its a wizard or cleric focused on spells that buff or have no save. A rogue can start, at level 1, with a +10 to initiative. By taking 1 feat, and 1 trait. Assuming you didn't dump stat to get a 20 dex at 1. Thats good odds on average to go first.

Offensive defense does not stack in the same round unless you really stretch the RAW. Its the same for an unrogue taking ninja trick to get core rogue talents. (which is RAW legal and apparently A-ok in pathfinder society? You seem to be against the unrogue having crogue talent options...if you are so angry at the rogue's ineptitude, why would you TAKE options from the class?)
-

ignoring the clearly disciplined, trained, deadly fighter about to smash your face in with a huge hammer/axe/sword to worry about the prancing pixie rogue? Maybe an evil dude that has the "I'll die before being captured" mentality would, after failing to hit the walking tank twice would change tactics and try to take someone else with him.
-

But a troll? An Ogre? I highly doubt they are intelligent enough to worry about it. They also are likely to get so frustrated that they can't hit the guy that they keep trying as a matter of pride.


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Derklord wrote:
Slim Jim wrote:
The RAW-legal way for a uRogue to take Offensive Defense (or any other core rogue talent) is via Rogue Talent [Ninja Trick (rogue talent: XYZ)].
Not only is it highly debatable if that works (for you, the list of Rogue Talents is the unchained one),
But ninjas can cherrypick what they like -- that's the point.
Quote:
The problem with Offensive Defense is that it stacks with itself. If you hit three attacks with 5d6 SA each in one round, that's +15 AC.

If that flies past the no-same-source stacking proscription, then every GM should ban it for every stripe of rogue no matter how many chains they are or aren't wearing, or house-hammer it into shape as they see fit.

(But this is a digressive topic, side-topic, so let's let it go.)

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

rorek55 wrote:
ignoring the clearly disciplined, trained, deadly fighter about to smash your face in with a huge hammer/axe/sword to worry about the prancing pixie rogue?

You're overlooking the "given" of this scenario, which (as I posed it several posts above) had both PCs flanking the target. -- In this situation, the rogue is every bit as capable of dishing out as much damage as the fighter, and possibly considerably more at 3rd-level. I.e., a dex 18 halfling rogue who hits with both TWFs does (1d3+4+2d6) + (1d3+2+2d6) with nonmagical pokey-sticks. That's an average of 23 + (healthy crit chance), which is pretty impressive output for any type of 3rd-level martial build.

Ergo, if you're the beleaguered opponent with choices, and are module "box-texted" to counterattack the PC who hurt you the most last round, that may very well be the rogue, NOT the fighter!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Derklord wrote:
The discussion in this thread proves that building a Rogue that isn't in very high risk of dying and/or being useless isn't easy. If we were talking about for instance an unBarbarian, the advice would be "take a two-handed weapon, take Power Attack, and take Superstition". If Rogue were on the same level, the advice could be just as concise. Sadly, that doesn't work.

In my anecdotal experience, greatsword barbarians led the pack by a large margin in low-level PFS character deaths I have personally witnessed. TWF "Drizzit" clones (whether rogues, rangers, or magus) were in second. I'm serious: barbarians croaked more often than all types of TWF melees combined. People just could not help themselves. Rage! Charge! <stand next to something angry, now with -4 AC!>

They just got torn apart all day long.


d8 is a common HD, but the rogue in particular is pushed towards melee in PF1 (clerics aren't so much for example), and lacks spells or an AC bonus - except against enemies it's hit. Multiple enemies, or an enemy the rogue has failed to hit go against unmodified AC.

Weak Fort save is especially a problem in melee. Poison, negative levels and disease are more common as melee effects.

Weak Will save is a problem for a lot of PCs, true. I've seen Wis-dumping wizards for whom it's a serious problem too.

Actual attack bonus isn't a big problem for an intelligently-built rogue, partly because of the likely heavy dex-focus but mainly because of the next point...

Most rogues will have at least one other means of triggering sneak attack, probably two or more, and these means tend to lead to a better hit chance - denying the enemies' dex bonus or easier flanking, one way or another.

Grand Lodge

Responses to rorek :

1) The d8 Hit Dice is a weakness when the class is a melee with low base defences. Heightening them without multi-classing ? Very difficult.

2) Other classes aren't as exposed as the rogue who requires much more work to raise these saving throws like 1). 14 con and praying for the best only goes so far.

3) Rogue has close to no options to buff the will save, maybe a single rogue trick, and even then it's not permanent (and no guarantee to pass through the sneak attack to activate it). Other classes start with better overall resilience making these better to swallow.

4) 1,5x dex to damage is a good thing, but the base damage will not be wholly superior to many of the other classes, and it might be on the contrary worse. Debilitating injury is by no means guaranteed either because of various immunities or simply being slower and then the opponents already acted. Base effects are more foolproof than any situationals.

5) Having this level of initiative bonus is made at the expense of the overall ability (Iron Will and Intomitable Faith ???) and it's also no guarantees.

Any intelligent opponent might ignore the big armored pole to attack the slightly less resilient rogue. It is not especially only evil. Even good NPCs might. I hit easier targets than hitting the harder ones for a matter of pride, as a GM and as a player. On the contrary, not doing so would be what is odd. In that case your expectations about that are wrong. You like the rogue, others hate these, but personal POVs don't enter into account there.

What can be noted is that not every player will accomodate the rogue to get the sneak attack. More often than not, if the player doesn't show an ability to set favourable placing alone, why others would help. Only then if despite best efforts it is not possible, then others will try. Playing on strengths is always better, but if disabled due to low resilience, is to no avail. I see very few rogues compared to similarly built slayers, inquisitors and co that it doesn't come from nowhere. Even Unchained the class is still glassy.


@rorek55: You don't seem to understand my argument.

The issue is not that the Rogue has weaknesses. The issue is not that the Rogue's weaknesses were insurmountable. The issue is that there are a lot of weaknesses, and each one requires investment. The second issue is that you need to actually know these weaknesses - hence why I advice against playing a Rogue a a first character. Because if you don't know about these weaknesses, your character will be in acute danger of both being useless a lot, and of dying a lot.

Of course you can win most initiative if you invest into it. But that's feat and trait you can't use to improve AC, Will, Fort, or build towards Circling Mongoose or something. Winning initiative is also only good for a single sneak attack and does jack the second round of combat.
Of course there are other classes with weak saves. But Fort and Will are the two important saves, and Rogue is one of only three classes with a bad progression in both (the others being Ninja and Swashbuckler).
Of course there are other classes with d8 HD. But those tend to either stay away from melee, or have magical defenses (like a mutagen's natural armor bonus, or spells like Mirror Image).

Oh and please, unable to get reliably healed with spells in combat is not an actual weakness in Pathfinder.

rorek55 wrote:
You also don't need to try and keep track of limited per day abilities (such as judgement or fervor spells) Debilitating injury is a godsend.

That is really not an upside, because it's a) super easy (seriously, tally marks on a piece of paper do that, that's something everyone should have learned to do in elementary school), and b) is a notable part of why the class is so weak - limited use abilities are simply stronger than unlimited ones, even when the limitiation isn't really that limiting (cf. rage rounds).

rorek55 wrote:
You seem to be against the unrogue having crogue talent options...if you are so angry at the rogue's ineptitude, why would you TAKE options from the class?)

I'm not taking options from the class, I'm following the book. The sidebar on page 24 of Unchained says "The following rogue talents can be used without modification." - Offensive Defense is not among those, and thus can't be "used without modification". Because even if you use the detour via Ninja Trick, you are trying to use a Rogue Talent not on that list.

rorek55 wrote:
Offensive defense does not stack in the same round unless you really stretch the RAW.
Slim Jim wrote:
If that flies past the no-same-source stacking proscription, then every GM should ban it for every stripe of rogue no matter how many chains they are or aren't wearing, or house-hammer it into shape as they see fit.

You don't need to stretch anything. There is no general "no-same-source stacking proscription". Seriously, most people presume so, but look at the actual rules. The actual phrase is this: "Bonuses without a type always stack, unless they are from the same source." CRB pg. 208. As a dodge bonus, Offensive Defense is undoubtedly not affected by that.

As I've said, I would allow it for cRogue, because when you're playing an NPC class based on a crap mechanic, that mechanic having high impact in the rare case that you get multiple attacks with it off in a single round does actually sound rather sensible to me.

rorek55 wrote:
ignoring the clearly disciplined, trained, deadly fighter about to smash your face in with a huge hammer/axe/sword to worry about the prancing pixie rogue?

So your argument is that the Rogue's best defense is that it's so f~@&ing weak that enemies won't care about it?

Also, "Sneak Attack" means the Rogue just stabbed me in the kidney or something. Hell yeah am I gonna bash his head in!


Quote:
"Bonuses without a type always stack, unless they are from the same source."

Meaning, for the purposes of Offensive Defense, you can't triple-dip your sneak-attack die-count as multiple stacking Dodge bonus to AC if you connect with three sneak-attacks that round. --You can stack five bazillion different sources of Dodge bonuses to AC, if ya got 'em.

Grand Lodge

rorek55 wrote:
ignoring the clearly disciplined, trained, deadly fighter about to smash your face in with a huge hammer/axe/sword to worry about the prancing pixie rogue?

Burden is on the rogue on not proving to be an ideal target, not on the opponents to accomodate the player. The easier target is close enough ? Gloves off unless the tankier one has means to physically block the incoming threat. There's always the risk that the player will be disallowed to play the character's game and the only way to mitigate that is to pay a lot of resources like Derklord is saying. But it will always be at the expense of the base rogue game because the base class doesn't have a big starting chassis.


Comparison.

Quote:
Circumstance bonuses stack with all other bonuses, including other circumstance bonuses, unless they arise from essentially the same source.
vs.
Quote:
Dodge bonuses stack with all other bonuses to AC, even other dodge bonuses.


Cavall wrote:

Rather than an estoc and power attack youd be better off with TWF as the penalty of power attack quickly becomes equal to and then greater than TWF. It would be better to have a lower penalty and more attacks, especially with AoO fishing as you want more and more chances to get and give free crits.

I am personally a fan of shattered defenses as many will have ways to intimidate quickly at mid levels, and a cruel weapon means retaliation back at you will be almost none. As you will be a rogue you can look into skill unlock intimidate, making the action investment into dazzling display completely worth its value.

Yeah, you can 2wf with Estoc and Kukri or twin kukris. Estoc does more damage, so you score more damage on a crit, but that base damage is scaled down with size as it is. The real reason to crit fish for this character is to score attacks of opportunity, and in that case the more attack rolls you get, the more are more likely to hit.

I was suggesting Power Attack because Power Attack gives a Damage bonus that does not scale down with size but does scale up with BAB. It is fair to say that the attack penalty scales up as well. When you are using a 2nd kukri, the base damage for a size small character will be 1-3, a 2 on average. and 2wf comes with a -2 on all attack rolls. When Power Attack gets up to -2 to attack, it will be +4 Damage. When it gets up to -3, it will be +6 Damage.

So, what if we use an Elven Curved Blade instead? then the damage goes up to +3: -1/+3 at level 1. When your BAB goes up to +4, Power Attack becomes -2/+6. When your BAB gets to +8, Power Attack goes to -3/+9. Each small-sized kukri attack add 2 points of damage/hit. I'm actually thinking that Power Attack with both hands results in more damage for less penalty than 2wf with Kukries, although it is still fair to say that more attack rolls means more chances of rolling crits and therefore more attacks of opportunity. I think it's a nuanced choice between Elven Curved Blade, twin Kukris, or Estoc and Kukri.

The problem with Shatter Defenses is that it relies on Intimidate, and you get a size-base bonus or penalty when you Intimidate, and Halflings are Size Small. Also, Shatter Defenses is expensive in terms of Feat prereqs and actions. You need to take Dazzling Display first, and it takes a Full Round Action to activate Dazzling Display. You could use Cornudgeon Smash to activate it while you are attacking, but then it takes 1 hit to make your opponent Shaken, a 2nd to make your opponent Flatfooted, then only on your 3rd hit is your opponent taking Sneak Attack Damage. The main reason I would consider taking Shatter Defenses is to take Sap Master, which doubles your Sneak Attack Damage dice, but Sap Master only works with Blunt weapons and nonlethal Damage, and it doesn't seem that the OP is considering going that way. I'm not sanguine about a Halfling taking Shatter Defenses, but maybe there is a way to get around the Size penalty or something.


Unless you're power attacking with the kukri as well, power attack will in all ways (excepting lowest levels) out race the penalties of twf. On a non full BAB character it's best to not stack those up.

The small size and intimidate is fair, but you'll max it out in every way.

The full action thing is a non detail as you can get checks based on certain outcomes but even if you couldn't it's a full action fear effect that creates frightened and panicked foes at med to med high levels. Having people run from you, or even better run from you after dropping weapons, means provoking AoO from allies and since you're crit fishing that means provoking from you too. Making it WELL beyond worth using a full round action.

Again this is with a focus in intimidate, so why wouldn't you use it to the fullest rather than just to shake people. They give you the ability for free to do so


Ratfolk TWF Rogue:
Emmentaller
Ratfolk unchained rogue (swashbuckler) 8 (Pathfinder RPG Advanced Player's Guide 135, Pathfinder RPG Bestiary 3 231, Pathfinder Unchained 20)
N Small humanoid (ratfolk)
Init +6; Senses low-light vision; Perception +13 (+17 to hear conversation or find concealed object)
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Defense
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AC 20, touch 13, flat-footed 19 (+6 armor, +1 deflection, +1 Dex, +1 natural, +1 size)
hp 67 (8d8+24)
Fort +6, Ref +14, Will +6; +2 morale bonus vs. fear, +2 vs. disease
Defensive Abilities evasion, improved uncanny dodge; Resist daring
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Offense
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Speed 0 ft.
Melee +1 dual-balanced mithral kukri +14/+9 (1d3+7/18-20) or
. . +1 dual-balanced mithral kukri +14/+9 (1d3+4/18-20)
Special Attacks sneak attack (unchained) +4d6, swarming
--------------------
Statistics
--------------------
Str 8, Dex 22, Con 14, Int 14, Wis 14, Cha 8
Base Atk +6; CMB +4; CMD 21
Feats Improved Two-weapon Fighting, Outflank[APG], Precise Strike[APG], Scurrying Swarmer, Two-weapon Fighting, Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (kukri)
Skills Acrobatics +13, Appraise +6, Bluff +10, Climb +1, Disable Device +9, Disguise +7, Escape Artist +11, Knowledge (dungeoneering) +10, Knowledge (local) +10, Perception +13 (+17 to hear conversation or find concealed object), Sense Motive +13, Stealth +17, Swim -1; Racial Modifiers +2 Stealth
Languages Aklo, Common, Undercommon
SQ cleanliness, debilitating injury: bewildered, debilitating injury: disoriented, debilitating injury: hampered, rogue talents (bonus feat, canny observer[APG], combat trick, swarming attack), skulk[ARG], surface sprinter
Other Gear +2 mithral chain shirt, +1 dual-balanced mithral kukri, +1 dual-balanced mithral kukri, amulet of natural armor +1, belt of incredible dexterity +2, cloak of resistance +2, ring of protection +1, 4,884 gp
--------------------
Special Abilities
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Canny Observer (Ex) +4 Perception to overhear conversations or find concealed or secret objects.
Cleanliness +2 vs. disease, exceeding disease save by 5 counts as 2 cons. saves,
Daring +2 (Ex) +2 save vs. fear.
Debilitating Injury: Bewildered -2/-4 (Ex) Foe who takes sneak attack damage takes AC pen (more vs. striker) for 1 rd.
Debilitating Injury: Disoriented -2/-4 (Ex) Foe who takes sneak attack damage takes attack pen (more vs. striker) for 1 rd.
Debilitating Injury: Hampered (Ex) Foe who takes sneak attack damage has speed halved (and can't 5 ft step) for 1 rd.
Evasion (Ex) If succeed on Reflex save for half dam, take none instead.
Improved Uncanny Dodge (Lv >= 12) (Ex) Retain DEX bonus to AC when flat-footed. You cannot be flanked unless the attacker is Level 12+.
Low-Light Vision See twice as far as a human in dim light, distinguishing color and detail.
Outflank Increase flank bonus by +2 if flanking ally has same feat. If you crit, ally gets an AoO.
Precise Strike +1d6 precision damage for melee attacks if you and an ally with this feat flank the same target.
Scurrying Swarmer Use swarming trait to enter square of willing ally, ally treated as having same teamwork feats.
Skulk -5 on Stealth to hide from creatures you have distracted with Bluff (instead of -10)
Sneak Attack (Unchained) +4d6 Attacks deal extra dam if flank foe or if foe is flat-footed.
Surface Sprinter Gain low-light vision and 30 ft. base speed.
Swarming (Ex) Can share a square with another with swarming, if both att the same foe, he is flanked.
Swarming Attack (Ex) While using swarming racial trait, gain dmg bonus = ally's sneak atk dice.

Treats allies as having the swarming racial trait at 3rd level.

Counts as flanking when occupying the same space as an ally, and counts the character he shares a space with as having the same teamwork feats.

He is nearly always flanking, gets +4 attack from outflank, gets an extra d6 of sneak attack from precise, gets +3 static damage/attack from swarming attack.

Standard attack full attack at 8th level, as long as the group has another melee character.

+18/+18?+13/+13 (1d3+10/18-20/x2) + 5d6 / (1d3+7/18-20/x2) + 5d6


Scott Wilhelm wrote:
I was suggesting Power Attack because Power Attack gives a Damage bonus that does not scale down with size but does scale up with BAB.

Power Attack makes rogues MAD in point-buy.

TWF uRogues should dump strength to jack dex, and take Piranha Strike instead. (And if they're a halfling, there's also Risky Striker -- although I would be leery of diminishing AC until Mirror Image is a commonly-received or self-administered buff.)

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