Best buff spell?


Advice


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

haste/heroism/fleet step/enlarge?


Nature Incarnate


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

Yeah, but that is self buff only. Want to see what I should pick for my sorcerer.


For me it would be a toss up between haste and Heroism, though for a personal preference, I’d choose Heroism. The bonuses to Perception and Saves can be lifesaving, the bonus to attack rolls can make the main ‘Fighter’ deadlier, or make those not so well endowed with the fist a cuffs be able to contribute, and no one is going to say no to bonuses on skills. The reason why I really like it is it’s a boost that lasts for 10 mins, meaning it may last long enough for two battles, and because of the bonuses to saves skills and perception, has some uses outside of battle.


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The better buff depends on the target & the situation.

I think Heroism has broader application, but Haste is better if the PC can actually use the action well, like a Fighter w/ an agile weapon or a Flurry Ranger. Meanwhile, a Precision Ranger or lumbering guy w/ a -10 MAP is better with Heroism.
To complete the set of Rangers, an Animal or Snare Ranger probably appreciates that extra action!

Depending on timing, Stoneskin can mitigate a lot of damage, which in some parties is essential.

Arguably Heal is the best buff. :)


Don’t forget about Longstrider. The +10 status bonus to Speed for an hour is a pretty good bang for your buck for a Level 1 Spell. The 2nd level version is an 8 hour buff (so generally lasts the adventuring day.) I could see parties preparing and casting the LV2 version at the beginning of the day. (Well, until they figure out it can be put into a Wand :p )

Oh, and I do agree buffs often depend on the situation, what is best. I’m just a sucker for general versatility (reason behind my personal choice of Heroism over Haste.)


Castilliano wrote:

The better buff depends on the target & the situation.

I think Heroism has broader application, but Haste is better if the PC can actually use the action well, like a Fighter w/ an agile weapon or a Flurry Ranger. Meanwhile, a Precision Ranger or lumbering guy w/ a -10 MAP is better with Heroism.
To complete the set of Rangers, an Animal or Snare Ranger probably appreciates that extra action!

Depending on timing, Stoneskin can mitigate a lot of damage, which in some parties is essential.

Arguably Heal is the best buff. :)

Eh, a flurry ranger can already make enough strikes and probably wants to use other actions. I'd rather take Heroism to increase my accuracy on all of the attacks. Unless it is for getting into position with impossible flurry or something.

I'd actually say the best Haste users are casters with a viable weapon. Being able to move, strike, and cast in the same then is quite good.


haste is also pretty amazing on champions, between smite, raise shields, blades of justice and whatnot, they are usually pretty action hungry for simple Strikes and Strides.

Rogues and Barbarians as well, since similar to Paladins they have "static" damage bonuses but sometimes lack the actions to pull multiple attacks to take advantage of said damage.


I can attest to the Gish synergy too. My parties tend to have multiple gishes and they love them some Haste.

That said, Heroism is great too since they're behind Martials in accuracy.

But, you know, por que los nuevos dos?


Pathfinder Adventure, Lost Omens, Pathfinder Accessories, Rulebook Subscriber
Siro wrote:
Don’t forget about Longstrider.

Isn't Longstrider a self-only buff? OP seems to be looking for buffs to hand out.


Blur, Heightened Circle of Protection, Bless


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Applied_People wrote:
Siro wrote:
Don’t forget about Longstrider.
Isn't Longstrider a self-only buff? OP seems to be looking for buffs to hand out.

Was written before I had noticed OP clarification on his initial comment. {ie comment was based on the original post.}

Dark Archive

For me, it’s inspire courage, especially with lingering performance since it affects a large area, includes all allies, and increase to hit/critical chance and damage. I can also use it every battle without worrying about slots.


Dirge of Doom with lingering Performance even better


Foresight.

Dark Archive

Atalius wrote:
Dirge of Doom with lingering Performance even better

I think dirge of doom is the best cantrip. However, it’s a debuff, not a buff.


Narxiso wrote:
Atalius wrote:
Dirge of Doom with lingering Performance even better
I think dirge of doom is the best cantrip. However, it’s a debuff, not a buff.

Since there is no save I feel like this is arguing semantics. At the end of the day they both get you to the same destination in a very similar way.

But at the same time a Bard should be getting both. Inspire has a range of 60 feet targeting allies, dirge has a range of 30 targeting enemies so there will be lots of situations when one will be better than the other due to positioning and of course you can use both if you harmonize.


Narxiso wrote:
Atalius wrote:
Dirge of Doom with lingering Performance even better
I think dirge of doom is the best cantrip. However, it’s a debuff, not a buff.

I tend to bypass Demoralize because you're only casting 1 Composition Cantrip most times, unless you Harmonize but that's your whole round. You can instead Demoralize and use a Composition Cantrip and have another action free or cast a normal buff spell too. Sure it's only 1 foe at a time but it's 1 foe frightened plus your other buff. [it's a double whammy for the foe as it gets debuffed and the party gets a buff]


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graystone wrote:
Narxiso wrote:
Atalius wrote:
Dirge of Doom with lingering Performance even better
I think dirge of doom is the best cantrip. However, it’s a debuff, not a buff.
I tend to bypass Demoralize because you're only casting 1 Composition Cantrip most times, unless you Harmonize but that's your whole round. You can instead Demoralize and use a Composition Cantrip and have another action free or cast a normal buff spell too. Sure it's only 1 foe at a time but it's 1 foe frightened plus your other buff. [it's a double whammy for the foe as it gets debuffed and the party gets a buff]

*Looks at changes to Demoralize from playtest and grumbles*

-not a comment against Graystone strategy the double whammy can be devastating when the party focuses on the frightened creature. I just miss my spamable Demoralize. :(


Siro wrote:
graystone wrote:
Narxiso wrote:
Atalius wrote:
Dirge of Doom with lingering Performance even better
I think dirge of doom is the best cantrip. However, it’s a debuff, not a buff.
I tend to bypass Demoralize because you're only casting 1 Composition Cantrip most times, unless you Harmonize but that's your whole round. You can instead Demoralize and use a Composition Cantrip and have another action free or cast a normal buff spell too. Sure it's only 1 foe at a time but it's 1 foe frightened plus your other buff. [it's a double whammy for the foe as it gets debuffed and the party gets a buff]

*Looks at changes to Demoralize from playtest and grumbles*

-not a comment against Graystone strategy the double whammy can be devastating when the party focuses on the frightened creature. I just miss my spamable Demoralize. :(

Agreed spammable was much better.


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Atalius wrote:
Agreed spammable was much better.

Spamable is good but I've seen what happens when you hit a creatures with frightened 2 AND the party with Lingering Composition [Inspire Heroics [inspire courage +3]]. That +5 chance to hit is ugly for that bad guy.


Oh I agree Demoralize did need a nerf from the playtest. Even without combining it with something else, the fact it was always (barring immunities) a excellent choice for a spare action, one of which did not get in the way of most things (did not affect MAP, and most spells leave you with a spare action, and opening up with it would help both of these.), made it extremely powerful. I just really liked spamming it in the playtest, and while I agree the change was justified (if I could use it effectively, I’m scared to think what someone actually good at the game could have done with it), I can still grumble :) .


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The best buff spell? Why, that would be Ant Haul, of course! It makes its target very buff!

Dark Archive

Doompatrol wrote:
Narxiso wrote:
Atalius wrote:
Dirge of Doom with lingering Performance even better
I think dirge of doom is the best cantrip. However, it’s a debuff, not a buff.

Since there is no save I feel like this is arguing semantics. At the end of the day they both get you to the same destination in a very similar way.

But at the same time a Bard should be getting both. Inspire has a range of 60 feet targeting allies, dirge has a range of 30 targeting enemies so there will be lots of situations when one will be better than the other due to positioning and of course you can use both if you harmonize.

I was following the definition. A buff is something that increases a character’s abilities, which is what inspire courage is. A debuff is something that reduces a character’s abilities, which is what dirge of doom is. While they have a similar mathematical effect, they can be used at the same time, causing an even greater effect.


shroudb wrote:

haste is also pretty amazing on champions, between smite, raise shields, blades of justice and whatnot, they are usually pretty action hungry for simple Strikes and Strides.

Rogues and Barbarians as well, since similar to Paladins they have "static" damage bonuses but sometimes lack the actions to pull multiple attacks to take advantage of said damage.

Yeah, shield users in general love haste. So do folks with animal companions.


I think magic weapon is the best buff spell, for the levels it works at least.


graystone wrote:
Narxiso wrote:
Atalius wrote:
Dirge of Doom with lingering Performance even better
I think dirge of doom is the best cantrip. However, it’s a debuff, not a buff.
I tend to bypass Demoralize because you're only casting 1 Composition Cantrip most times, unless you Harmonize but that's your whole round. You can instead Demoralize and use a Composition Cantrip and have another action free or cast a normal buff spell too. Sure it's only 1 foe at a time but it's 1 foe frightened plus your other buff. [it's a double whammy for the foe as it gets debuffed and the party gets a buff]

You can cast dirge of doom to inflict frightened 1 for 1 round, no save, then follow up with inspire courage to buff allies, no harmonize needed, so long as you don't go right before all the baddies.

The fear effect of dirge of doom is immediate. The only thing you lose this way is that enemies can recover from the fear normally on their turn. As long as you don't go right before them, it gives your allies time to take advantage of both at once. And you can still shoot a bow or something.


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sherlock1701 wrote:
graystone wrote:
Narxiso wrote:
Atalius wrote:
Dirge of Doom with lingering Performance even better
I think dirge of doom is the best cantrip. However, it’s a debuff, not a buff.
I tend to bypass Demoralize because you're only casting 1 Composition Cantrip most times, unless you Harmonize but that's your whole round. You can instead Demoralize and use a Composition Cantrip and have another action free or cast a normal buff spell too. Sure it's only 1 foe at a time but it's 1 foe frightened plus your other buff. [it's a double whammy for the foe as it gets debuffed and the party gets a buff]

You can cast dirge of doom to inflict frightened 1 for 1 round, no save, then follow up with inspire courage to buff allies, no harmonize needed, so long as you don't go right before all the baddies.

The fear effect of dirge of doom is immediate. The only thing you lose this way is that enemies can recover from the fear normally on their turn. As long as you don't go right before them, it gives your allies time to take advantage of both at once. And you can still shoot a bow or something.

Without harmonise you can't even CAST a second composition in the same round.

"You can cast only one composition spell each turn, and you can have only one active at a time.If you cast a new composition spell, any ongoing ef f ects from your previous composition spell end immediately."

And that's even before starting the debate if the fear effect is an "ongoing effect" or not (it's exactly the same as the buff effects, so I would rule ongoing personally)


But you can cast Dirge of Doom and say a spell. Then if you are lucky some of your allies go after you but before the enemies. On the enemy turn they stay Frightened 1. Then on your turn you can Inspire. And any allies that go after you but before the enemies are both inspired and fighting frightened enemies.

Also note that you can use Lingering Composition on Dirge of Doom. It isn't perfect since enemies just need to move away from you to negate it but there will be times where that isn't practical for them.


Bigguyinblack wrote:

But you can cast Dirge of Doom and say a spell. Then if you are lucky some of your allies go after you but before the enemies. On the enemy turn they stay Frightened 1. Then on your turn you can Inspire. And any allies that go after you but before the enemies are both inspired and fighting frightened enemies.

Also note that you can use Lingering Composition on Dirge of Doom. It isn't perfect since enemies just need to move away from you to negate it but there will be times where that isn't practical for them.

The thing for me is you're picking Dirge of Doom over Harmonize. Casting Inspire Defense and Inspire Courage together gives +1 status bonus to attack rolls, damage rolls, AC and saving throws, as well as resistance equal to half the spell's level to physical damage. Or switch in Inspire Competence if someone is using maneuvers.

As far as Lingering Composition on Dirge of Doom, IMO that's always a bad idea as you never know the results of the Dirge: you could be extending the duration of nothing. IMO, you use lingering on buff as you know those bonuses will actually be usable.


Bigguyinblack wrote:

But you can cast Dirge of Doom and say a spell. Then if you are lucky some of your allies go after you but before the enemies. On the enemy turn they stay Frightened 1. Then on your turn you can Inspire. And any allies that go after you but before the enemies are both inspired and fighting frightened enemies.

Also note that you can use Lingering Composition on Dirge of Doom. It isn't perfect since enemies just need to move away from you to negate it but there will be times where that isn't practical for them.

the moment you cast Inspire, the ongoing effect of "frighten 1" will disappear.

and yes, lingering on Dirge is amazing, but it's not that clear cut win over Inspire.

to me, Dirge is best in prolonged battles and Inspire in shorter ones.

Thing is, on the first few rounds, your targets can be easily Intimidated, after the intimidation is over and they are immune, THEN it's time to Dirge.

So, on a fight that will last like 3-4 rounds, Inspire will usually have you covered with a +1 and Intimidate with a -1 on the focus targets.

After those rounds elapse, THEN you switch songs.


Frighten 1 disappears at the end of the enemy's turn.
If we are saying effects last the duration and ignore the usual method of getting rid of them then inflicting Sickened for 1 minute prevents the target from making the fort save to get rid of it.


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From Harmonize feat: "You can perform multiple compositions simultaneously. If your next action is to cast a composition, it becomes a harmonized composition. Unlike a normal composition, a harmonized composition doesn’t end if you cast another composition, and you can cast another composition on the same turn as a harmonized one."

Starting a composition will end another that is in effect. That means in the instant you cast Inspire, there is no more dirge. No more dirge, no more frighten.


I know starting another composition ends a previous one.
I'm saying that Dirge debuffs the enemy with Frightened 1. Frightened normally decreases at the end of the enemy turn but Dirge prevents that.
So on your turn you start a new composition and Dirge ends.
But why would the Frightened 1 end?
It should end at the end of the enemy's turn as normal. Just like there are methods to end persistent damage and a fort save to end sickened.

Just because Dirge prevents Frightened from ending normally while it is in effect doesn't mean it should cure the Frightened condition when Dirge ends.


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Bigguyinblack wrote:

I know starting another composition ends a previous one.

I'm saying that Dirge debuffs the enemy with Frightened 1. Frightened normally decreases at the end of the enemy turn but Dirge prevents that.
So on your turn you start a new composition and Dirge ends.
But why would the Frightened 1 end?
It should end at the end of the enemy's turn as normal. Just like there are methods to end persistent damage and a fort save to end sickened.

Just because Dirge prevents Frightened from ending normally while it is in effect doesn't mean it should cure the Frightened condition when Dirge ends.

(Area 30-foot emanation)

Foes within the area are frightened 1. They can't reduce their frightened value below 1 while they remain in the area.

Dirge of doom stops... Area of emanation stops. No more effect is keeping them without reducing... next turn frightened 1 goes away.


Bigguyinblack wrote:
Frightened normally decreases at the end of the enemy turn but Dirge prevents that.

Yes, and once dirge ends, it stops preventing it...

dirge of doom has a 1 round duration: "If a spell’s duration is given in rounds, the number of rounds remaining decreases by 1 at the start of each of the spellcaster’s turns, ending when the duration reaches 0." If the duration runs out normally, frightened can't be reduced for that duration but cut it short...


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Which is why I said in my earlier post "...Then if you are lucky some of your allies go after you but before the enemies..."

My point was that there is a time frame where the enemy is still frightened 1 and you can effect your allies with Inspire.

Also note that Frightened 1 reduces the enemy's armor class and save DCs.


I kind of like a sustained Protective Ward. +1 status bonus to AC thats rather easily applied.

Yeah its not numerically the best. But I really like how easily and readliy its applied and can be (I think) applied via Explorative action as a steady ongoing buff during exploration and +1 ac is fairly useful.

So.. "best" to me in this case is the one that is widely applicable. and I find that really quite useful. easily maintained during a lot of different activities. Granted plenty of other t hings and it doesn't stack with plenty.


Well, I was giving it some thought. Now I would not say this is the most powerful buff spell, in fact it’s traditionally seen as bad thing. But what about ‘Maze’ ?

Ok, before the pitch forks come out, being trapped inside a Maze is not often considered aMazing (ok now you raise those pitch forks.) But it does have some buff like benefits= 1) it keeps the target safe from danger, as they are trapped by themselves 2) it keeps them hidden from everyone else and 3) the only limit on actions in the maze is trying to escape it. And you can keep up said Maze for about 10 mins (you need to use an action each round to do so). So the person in the maze can do whatever they want, such as healing, self buffing, the Macarena, ect, without having to deal with anything else.

Meh, this is probably a well known use of the spell, I just had not clued into it now. But regardless I think it should be mentioned in the flexibility of it both being a ‘Buff’ and ‘Debuff’. (Perhaps stretching the definition of Buff a bit...)


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Bigguyinblack wrote:

Which is why I said in my earlier post "...Then if you are lucky some of your allies go after you but before the enemies..."

My point was that there is a time frame where the enemy is still frightened 1 and you can effect your allies with Inspire.

No.

Compositions specifically END all ongoing effects if you cast another.

Dirge:
Enemies around you are Frightened 1.

It ENDS this effect.

So the very instant you cast another composition, the Frightened 1 effect is removed.

To put it in another way:

ALL round duration effects normally expire at end of round.

So, "+1 status bonus to attack/damage" (from Inspire), as an example, would last until the end of the round.
Frightened 1,as another example, would last until the end of the round.

That's the general rule.

Composition SPECIFIC rule ENDS "ongoing effects".

It doesn't let them expire, it directly cancels them.

Else, every single composition would be able to overlap.

Note the specific language :

" any ongoing effects from your previous composition spell end immediately"

Frightened 1 IS, by definition, an ongoing effect.
So it does end immediately.

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