Wild Stalker Rage Powers

Rules Questions

A quick question regarding the Rage Powers that the Ranger archetype, Wild Stalker gets.

It is very clear that they treat the rage ability as their level -3

D20Rage of the Wild wrote:

At 4th level, a wild stalker gains the rage ability as the barbarian class feature, but its barbarian level is considered to be his ranger level –3.

This ability replaces hunter’s bond.

Now there is no indication as to how to treat the ranger level vs the barbarian level in the language used for the Rage Powers

Rage Powers wrote:

At 5th level, a wild stalker ranger gains a single rage power, as the barbarian class feature. He gains another rage power each five levels after 5th (to a maximum of four rage powers at 20th level).

This ability replaces the ranger’s second, third, fourth, and fifth favored enemy abilities.


Wild Talents wrote:

At 6th level, a wild stalker can either take a rage power, or gains a +2 insight bonus into any one of the following skills: Acrobatics, Climb, Perception, Stealth, Survival, or Swim. The wild stalker can gain one of these two benefits again every five levels after 6th (to a maximum of 4 times at 20th level).

This ability replaces the ranger’s 6th-, 10th-, 14th-, and 18th-level combat style feat abilities.

I am currently under the impression that the Ranger level is equivalent to the barbarian level -3 for taking rage powers that require a barbarian level prerequisite. I have to other players on opposite sides of this. One says it is equal too, and the other saying you cannot take rage powers with barbarian levels as a prerequisite.

Can someone please just agree with me so tht I can show them this post

As written, you only count as having any barbarian levels for the Rage extraordinary ability, not the Rage Powers extraordinary ability (they’re separate, technically). So RAW you do not meet barbarian level prerequisites for Rage Powers.

*However,* anyone with a brain should be able to infer what you had inferred, that you are more than likely supposed to count as Ranger level -3 for the purpose of rage power prerequisites. Archetypes simply *do not* receive the same level of attention to detail to make sure everything is written perfectly. Honestly it’s not make or break though, there’s plenty of good rage powers without level prerequisites. If your GM is unwilling to make the obvious call, and this actually ruins your entire character, just play with other people or kill off your character. One-time disagreements like this happen all the time... however if your group is constantly intransigent on reading into things like this in the most brain-dead, RAW-zombie way, then finding a new group is probably a good call (unless of course this is for PFS... then you just need to *really* read through any archetype/obscure build you plan to take).

Minigiant wrote:
Can someone please just agree with me so tht I can show them this post

I mean, would that really be convincing? We're all just fellow players doing our best to understand and play the game, same as you folks.

CMantle's presentations of both literal and "non-zombie" readings are sound. For some reason, wild stalker doesn't have the text that, e.g., skalds have with respect to their effective barbarian level counting for rage power prerequisites, but this was likely an oversight by either design or editing.

CMantle wrote:
Honestly it’s not make or break though, there’s plenty of good rage powers without level prerequisites.

I strongly disagree. One, because it's not just prereqs but also skaling Rage Powers like Superstition that are in question, and two, the ability to gain pounce is literally a game changer for melees.

But I think there is a simple solution: Apart from the rage powers from Blood of the Moon where the writers screwed up the language pattern (using 2nd person like feats instead of 3rd person like other class features), and the Skald rage powers from ACG, every rage power says "the barbarian". Which means, for the purpose of rage powers, you must replace "barbarian" with "ranger", of the archetype's entire class feature stops working. You cannot use the class feature without adapting the language. There's no reason to limit that adaptation to the description and not the prerequisite part.

I also suggest reading this post, by then-developer Sean K Reynolds.

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