PF2 - Knower of Things


Advice


I'm looking to make PF2 skill monkey. Most particularly the skills associated with knowing things more than skill for making friends or building things. A PC that knows things about creatures and people encountered, what the Gaterwobbler family is famous for growing on their farms, why Sir Clanks ancestors hate the Saerenites, etc...

Usually the first thing that gets suggested is the intelligence caster wizard. However, they actually don't get very many skills and I personally find dealing with filling up my spellbook (instead of helpful gear) to be frustrating.

So moving on.

Bard with the enigma muse feat of Bardic Lore seems just about ideal. However, there is this "If you have legendary proficiency in Occultism, you gain expert proficiency in Bardic Lore, but you can't increase your proficiency in Bardic Lore by any other means." Sounds like it will be great in early game, but by mid game and later it will be falling behind. But, it only says you can't increase the proficiency. Are there other things you can get, do, take to improve your skill checks in Bardic Lore that I am missing? Maybe that would keep it from falling too far behind.

Rogue will start with around 10 + intelligence modifier skills. And holy carp! They get a skill feat and a skill increase every level. Even if you say that to function as a rogue you need to keep up several physical and social skills, that is still a lot.

I know the system hasn't been out long enough to complete any major campaigns. I also know some of you have played around with mid- and high- level stuff just to see how the system works. So which do you think will work better without interfering too much in the other standard aspects of the class?

I am quite sure I can come up with either a rogue or a bard that I will be happy playing. However, I am having trouble trying to figure out which to make. Any assistance or suggestions will be much appreciated.


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Have you looked at the Investigator from the APG playtest at all? It sounded like the investigator was still rough around the edges with respect to combat, but the skill use seemed really solid. I don't know when your campaign is starting up and what rules your GM is okay allowing, but it seemed like it was worth a mention.

The Exchange

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If I understand correctly, you are looking for a character who knows about everything, but does not necessarily know how to to do everything

Gnomish Bard (with Adopted into Elven)
Muses Polymath then Enigma via Multifarious
MCD into Divine class so can summon Cassisian Celestial (or trick magic item)

Cassisian - "Repository of Lore - While the cassisian isn’t particularly intelligent, it has perfect memory and can remember everything it sees or hears. This allows it to attempt Lore checks on any topic ... making it a better resource than agent in matters of information use."

Background - Emissary (Multilingual)

Ancestral Feats:
Gnomish Obsession, Elocutionist (both), Longevity (all three)
(remember Ancestral Paragon can get you a 1st level racial)
Elocutionist talks to animals, Longevity gets you anything

Class Feats:
Multifarious, Bardic Lore, Eclectic Skill, True Hypercognition.

General/skill Feats:
Additional Lore
Multilingual (can be taken multiple times and will give you 4 languages a pop)
Legendary Linguist (talk to anyone)
Legendary Codebreaker (read anything)
Planar Survival (live anywhere)
Quick Identification
Unmistable Lore

Skills Max out
Occultism
Society
Survival

Magi Items
Possibility Tome (L18)
Gold Nodule Aeon Stone (L6)

Have not included things from LOWG, LOCG, or playtest


A Bard can increase there own skill checks, including knowledge rolls, by using the ‘Heroism’ spell. They also have the ‘Loremaster’s Etude’ which can let you roll twice when making knowledge checks, which can make up for a lower Prof bonus, and ‘Know-It-All’, which gives you additional info on a knowledge check, which can both save actions in battle, and get you more info at the base DC (as more checks on the same subject gets harder.) Bardic Lore also has the advantage of umbrellaing all knowledge under the Int stat.

A rogue does however, also has it advantage to be the know it all. As you had mentioned, the accelerated prof increase, will not only increase the prof bonuses, but at a faster rate. And, as Laran mentioned, there are plenty of good knowledge based skill feats, and as a Rogue you get more. Plus, with more skills, not only can you ‘do’ more things, but also make knowledge checks with them (ie, you may never roll an ‘Athletic’ check to actually climb something, but you may use it recall knowledge about proper climbing techniques. Rare that something is not covered by the main knowledge based skills, but can happen). You can also pick up ‘Battlefield Assessment’ as another way to gain info on creatures in battle, which can give you a back up plan if you fail a knowledge check, to get just a little more info out.

I could see a Bard which MC’s into rogue for ´Skill mastery’ to increase the prof of the knowledge skills, and gain a couple of skills feats, or a Rogue which MC into Bard to take some of the Enigma Muse feats, to fill out the Know-It-All role.

Also, Laran, awesome list (actually forgot about skill feats, especially the Lore increasing ones). Don’t forget about about the ‘Diadem of Intellect’


Honestly I'd probably Main Ranger and Archetype Bard. I'd take Monster Hunter + Master Monster Hunter and train up my Knowledge (Nature) and Occultism. Then, to identify monsters you're at your maximum and for everything else, you've got Expert with hopefully a decent Intelligence score. I'm assuming the hardest checks here are for monster identification, so having the higher bonus there makes sense. And while this does require a few decent ability scores, it only requires Legendary in two proficiencies.

EDIT: You could do this by maining Bard as well, but then Master Monster Hunter (which lets you use nature to identify) comes online at level 20 instead of 10, and that just doesn't seem worth it.


Since this is still my first PF2 character. I would rather avoid the playtest books for the moment.

This guy wouldn't be just for monster ID, though that is a major thing.

I think I'm going Bard. I will have to look up some of the things in Laran and Siro lists. I don't recognize all of it. So I'm not sure I will want to take all of it. Like I'm not sure taking a divine archetype is worth it just to summon 1 specific creature. But if it gives me enough other benefits, I might go for it.

Thanks folks.


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May also want to look at the Pathfinder Agent and Scrollmaster Archetype Dedications. Some really great stuff for Recall Knowledge checks there. Especially since you're basically building a list on your own of things that you'll end up getting a +4 on. :)

Scarab Sages

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I tried to create something similar recently, but unfortunately it was not a good fit for Society play. At least, not yet (I had wanted to go Pathfinder Agent > Scrollmaster)

If you go Gnome Rogue and take Gnome Polyglot, the Emissary background and then use your Rogue skill feat for Multilingual, you could know 12+int modifier languages at level one and gain four more languages as you gain proficiency. This might be overkill, but for those that want to know languages this is probably your best bet.

The Rogue is the best for getting skill feats and skill increases. As Lore will often be against a lower DC than other checks for knowledge, you could use these to gain a wide variety of Lore skills or just have a higher proficiency than others in a wider variety of skills used for Recall Knowledge checks.


You could play as a Rogue, and spend every skill feat you get on Additional Lore. These extra Lores automatically increase in proficiency at appropriate levels. For backup, multiclass to Bard and take Bardic Lore (and pick up Guidance as one of your cantrips for good measure).

Being a gnome with Gnome Obsession (extra auto-increasing Lore) and Eclectic Obsession (become Trained in any one lore once per day for ten minutes or until you roll a critical failure on it) helps as well. You could also go the elf route, with Ancestral Longevity, Expert Longevity, and Universal Longevity, but that requires knowing ahead of time what skill to bring online until you get to Universal at 13th level.


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You can also multiclass into Rogue to get Skill Mastery and other fun stuff to advance your skills and pick up skill feats as needed. If you're focused more on that than other bard class feats.


Gloom wrote:
You can also multiclass into Rogue to get Skill Mastery and other fun stuff to advance your skills and pick up skill feats as needed. If you're focused more on that than other bard class feats.

Sure, but that uses up class feats. That said, two skill increases and a skill feat ain't that bad a deal for a class feat.

But I think rogue MCing as bard will be better as the know-it-all than the bard MCing as rogue. Rogue is the primary skill monkey, after all.


Guess bard with rogue dedication.

By lvl 8 you will take

Quote:


PFS Legal Know-It-AllFeat 8
Bard
Source Core Rulebook pg. 102
Prerequisites enigma muse
When you succeed at a Knowledge check, you gain additional information or context. When you critically succeed at a Knowledge check, at the GM’s discretion you might gain even more additional information or context than normal.

And by lvl 14

Quote:

Source Core Rulebook pg. 103

Prerequisites enigma muse
Your mind works at an incredible pace. You instantly use up to five Recall Knowledge actions. If you have any special abilities or free actions that would normally be triggered when you Recall Knowledge, you can’t use them for these actions.

Even if the don't stack, you will be using know it all till lvl 14.


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Staffan Johansson wrote:
Gloom wrote:
You can also multiclass into Rogue to get Skill Mastery and other fun stuff to advance your skills and pick up skill feats as needed. If you're focused more on that than other bard class feats.

Sure, but that uses up class feats. That said, two skill increases and a skill feat ain't that bad a deal for a class feat.

But I think rogue MCing as bard will be better as the know-it-all than the bard MCing as rogue. Rogue is the primary skill monkey, after all.

Sure, if you're specifically going for skill feats. But you'd be surprised just how useful Bardic Lore can be.


If I decide to go with Bard and rely on Bardic Lore, do I really need to get all those other Lore skill proficiencies? Aren't they redundant at that point? Or is it still useful?


Bardic Lore stays at Trained until level 15 at the earliest (the earliest point where you can get Legendary in Occultism). So from 1st to 14th level, your Bardic Lore skill will likely go up by 14 or 15 points (13 from proficiency/level, and 1 or 2 from raising your Intelligence - I can't find any feats or items that give a generic bonus to Lore checks or Recall Knowledge checks until higher level). A typical level 14 DC is 32, which is 17 points higher than the typical level 1 DC. So for equal-level tasks, you're about 2-3 points behind at 14th level compared to 1st. This may or may not be a problem for your know-it-all.

However, if you take the Additional Lore skill feat, that lore will automatically improve at the right levels, so at 14th level you will be a Master in that Lore. That's +4 over what you have at Trained, so then you're 1-2 points ahead instead.


At least in my experiences with Bardic Lore, there is a bit of a redundancy. Generally, the main use of Lore (in my exp) is to Recall knowledge on it, which Bardic Lore has you covered. However, if there is a specific type of Lore that you know will come up often, it may not be a bad idea idea to get it because=1) The DC for these checks including recalling knowledge should be slightly lower if you have the specific type of Lore which goes with it 2) As mentioned there are multiple ways of increasing the prof of Lore skills beyond that of the prof increases given by level (ie, ancestry and skill feats), which can make it easier to get to Legendary prof in them, thereby gaining a higher bonus then your Bardic Lore could have and 3) Bardic Lore only let’s you Recall Knowledge on the subject, not carry out any other tasks of the subject, while Lore does.

Ultimately, Lore skills can be very heavily campaign dependant, but can be very useful in the right situation (ie, a Sailing Lore is going to be really awesome in a pirate theme campaign, not so useful in campaign where your landlocked) Don’t forget, if you have downtime, you can use the retraining rules, to change a Lore skill that is no longer useful, into one that is.

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