Small Race, Big Stick


I wanna make an obscene gnome/halfling character that utilizes Vital Strike.

How might we go about this?

25 pt. buy
paizo only
non-evil alignment

Goal: Frontline Small Race with massive single attack damage

I don't want to go just vital strike and call it done. I want to maximize the everloving stuffing out of this.

Thank you in advance.

Haven't worked these out in detail but

Carry a small-sized barstool or something around, play a hinyasi brawler and get shikigami style and its dependent feats.

Or, see what you can do with a pyrokineticist and kinetic blade/whip. I made such a character without vital strike & should be able to dig her up.

Or, see the power of a cave druid polymorphed into a carnivorous crystal.

Blue_Sky wrote:
How might we go about this?

Just take any of the normal Vital Strike builds floating around and realize you're exactly one size category behind?

Polymorph into something that isn't small sized?

Deliberately misinterpret Furious Finish and go for a SA build?

Does it have to be Vital Strike? Lances make for great single-strike builds and as a small race your mount wouod be medium (which means it can fit wherever normal PCs are).

Alternately, Halflings have the feat: RISKY STRIKER. Combining this with Power Attack, Furious Focus and the Vital Strike feats and you're looking at -2AC for 2d10+15(+STR) at level 8 with no other bonuses.

Take at least 1 level of Barbarian/Bloodrager and the Extra Rage feat (however many times you deem necessary) for a decent X/day damage boost.

Hmm, I remember playing around with a Druid (Nature Fang)/Unchained Rogue (Scout) to build a Charging, Vital Striking, Sneak Attacking, Opportunist-using melee monster that paired well with his Animal Companion. The DM let the rogue+druid levels stack for access to Rogue/Slayer talents.

Worshipped Gorum, took his Divine Fighting Technique. Played in Giantslayer, and tore things up. It was a Half-Orc but I am sure you could adapt it to fit a halfling or gnome (and that tasty dodge bonus against giants).

Blue_Sky wrote:
I wanna make an obscene gnome/halfling character that utilizes Vital Strike. <snip> Frontline Small Race with massive single attack damage. I don't want to go just vital strike and call it done. I want to maximize the everloving stuffing out of this.

It's not "obscure"; it just very rarely gives you what you want while avoiding "gimp building" (a predicament especially prevalent in point-buy, and an example of the inherent problems can be seen in the concurrent gnome paladin thread).

It is barely possible to build a dex-based (i.e., non-gimpy) small-race greatsword fighter -- but the key to making it work is to not use a greatsword until the multiclass abilities gel together. (The build below will S&B with a rapier prior to 5th.)

STR- 10
DEX+ 19 (raise 4th)
CON: 14 (halfling, 25pt-buy, 17,15,14,12,12,7)
INT: 7 (raise 8th or 12th, taking Fly as the new skill)
WIS: 12
CHA+ 17 (raise 8th or 12th)

alignment: chaotic-good (necessary)
racial trait: Fleet of Foot
character traits: Berserker of the Society, Veteran of Battle
01 Barbarian ([Savage Technologist], because "maximized"), Extra Rage
02 uRogue1 [Weapon Finesse][SA+1d6]
03 Fighter1 [Weapon Master:Greatsword][FEAT(c)], Agile Maneuvers or FEAT(g)
04 Fighter2 [Weapon Guard][FEAT(c)], DEX>20
05 Fighter3 [Weapon Training+1], Power Attack or FEAT(g) we take advantage of Advanced Weapon Training:
-- retrain the Fighter bonus feat taken at 3rd to AWT: Fighter’s Finesse
-- retrain the Fighter bonus feat taken at 4th to AWT: Trained Grace
06 uRogue2 [uRogue talent]
07 uRogue3 [finesse training:Greatsword], Vital Strike
-- retrain AWT: Trained Grace (now superfluous) to Divine Fighting Technique (Gorum's Swordsmanship)

Rest of build: one more level of barbarian (for Uncanny Dodge and a rage power), one more level of uRogue (for Improved Uncanny Dodge and Debilitating Injury), and the rest fighter. After you've leveled to 9th or higher in fighter, you can consider retraining the Weapon Master archetype to core fighter (with Weapon Training in Heavy Blades) to pick up the rest of the class bling. After Fighter9+, you can toy with going back to rogue, or multiclass into a skill-heavier martial (e.g., Slayer).

Relevant gear shopping list: Furious greatsword, Gloves of Dueling, cheap wands to cast OoC with UMD (e.g., Longstrider, Mage Armor, etc). Armor: non-upgraded quilted cloth until you segue straight into Celestial Armor.

-- As far as I know, this is the only way in the game to:
* use a greatsword as a finesse weapon, and...
* gain dex-to-damage with it, and...
* be Weapon Training kosher, while...
* being a good-aligned small race character, with...
* Gorum's Swordsmanshop, who...
* packs it all into a Vital Strike build by 7th level, who
* avoids rules-lawyery weapon-transmuting widgetry, and...
* qualifies for Power Attack in a non-gimpy, non-MAD point-buy platform.

Character will be +9 to hit off attack attribute and size bonus as early as 4th while raging with a belt. (-1 BAB, but an easy sacrifice for the gains.)

There does not appear to be any way to use a greatsword one-handed while keeping the goodie list above activated (e.g., Effortless Lace doesn't work with greatswords) or by saddling yourself with attack-penalties (such as by being a Titan Mauler, a barbarian archetype that doesn't stack with Savage Technologist anyway).

It is an minor annoyance (given that you knew it going in) that your base weapon die will contract from 2d6 to d8 by being a small race, but the build above can easily expand into other exploitable niches, such a weaponized rogue social abilities and halfling-specific traits and feats to pick up damage via alternative means (e.g., sneak-attack). Move speed is 40, and your armor expenses at low level are essentially non-existent.

Very interesting build...and a small greatsword is actually 1d10, so one whole average damage higher!!!!!111!!!


I might also be inclined to shuffle the numbers in Con, Wis and Cha for Con 15 (raise at some point), Wis 14, Cha 14, seeing as the character only receives one skill-point per level of fighter (hey, he's a "fool of a Took" type). Practical result is +1hp/level after the bump, and +1 Perception and will-saves. -- It depends how interested you are in pursuing intimidation or bluff in the later mid-levels as to whether you prefer Cha higher than Con. If you do the latter, I would not take more than four (or at most six) levels of fighter before hopping to slayer, avenger vigilante, ranger, or other similarly skill-dense full-BAB class. (SavTech barbarian is an incredible front-load, but a mediocre archetype otherwise, so ditch it after at most two.)

Error: the build needs a 4th level of Weapon Master fighter to quality for the feat Advanced Weapon Training. (Not a problem since we were going to take it anyway.)

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