Season Sage (Druid) abilities


Advice


I'm playing season sage in a campaign right now, and we recently hit level 7. I am not a combat focused character, and I'm not interested in ways to become OP. However, the campaign has been pretty dangerous thus far, and I'm hoping to make better use of my archetype's abilities. I'm also hoping for some clarification on how the "season's veil" is supposed to work.

The spring ability says "Plants form vibrant, heavy undergrowth while in the aura. If the area can support plants, a circle of minor plants lingers afterward." I'm not sure how to read this.

The first sentence suggests that there must be plants in the area for the ability to function, just like entangle. The second sentence suggests the opposite because if you are able to use the ability in an area that doesn't support plants, you must be able to use it where there are no plants... Right? This is important because our campaign takes place in a desert region so... Not many plants.

The summer and winter abilities can change the temperature and deal 1d6 damage as a swift action. 1d6 isn't much though, and it never scales up... Should there be other effects? According to environmental rules, people who take damage from extreme temperatures are fatigued. Does this count?

However powerful this ability is or isn't, I'm struggling to think of a way that I can use it to meaningfully contribute to combat. Any advice on how this ability works or creative ways to use it would be appreciated.


Season Sage

Forgot to post a link


I can't really give any advice on the topic {wish I could, especially because you were thoughtful enough to post a link to the ability}. However, this appears to be material from PF1, and this is a PF2 forum. You may have more luck on the PF1 forums/you may get conflicting info based on PF2 mechanics.

The Exchange

Flagged for moving to the PF1 forums


Oomph my bad, flagged it myself. Thanks.


Bump. No advice?


Yes, they should be fatigued, which is definitely more valuable than the damage. Season Sage is decent in that you get extra Bear's Endurances or Enlarge Persons on your allies if you want (with no restriction on type unlike actual Enlarge Person). That's contributing to combat.

Are you saying though that you don't want to actually DIRECTLY contribute to combat, or you're saying you are finding it difficult to meaningfully contribute in general? Because you just got 4th level spells...like Flame Strike and my new favorite Explosion of Rot...or Greater Aggressive Thundercloud/Flaming Sphere/Ball Lightning, Ice Storm/Volcanic Storm, just to name a few.

3rd level spells like Plant Growth, Sheet Lightning, and Sleet Storm can act as battlefield control or debuffing.

And if any of that fails, Season Sages are still spontaneous summoners, and Summon Nature's Ally IV gives you some excellent options...in my opinion, a very effective tactic would be to summon a creature, and then on the turn it is summoned you go use a standard action Vernal Growth to bump its strength and go to town on an enemy or Summer Might to make it an even more robust tank for the party.


I'll start with season veil as that's simpler than coming up with advice.

The way I read it, the area *always* surges with live, even in deep dry desert, the ability is separated into the two parts, and the second part depends on "if the area can support plants". So in the desert you would get the burst of heavy undergrowth for 10 minutes, after which they will die in the sun. If they place can support plants, a (relatively) harmless circle of plants will remain behind, sort of as a mark of the druid's passage.

Both winter and summer abilities specify "as extreme cold" and "as extreme heat", which are environmental rules. Both apply the Fatigued condition if anyone takes damage from them. Now before level 8 those abilities are extremely limited use, as you will notice they force the Constitution save every 10 minutes to prevent the nonlethal damage, which means someone would have to stand by you for 10 minutes to start suffering adverse effects of the environment. At level 8 (so 1 more level for you) you can trigger those abilities do damage so I would say that would also cause the environmental effect of fatigue.

As for meaningful application for combat, the composition of your party is somewhat important. If you have at least one ranged friend, you can use Vernal Bloom to create a heavy undergrowth area around both of you, making it really difficult for melee enemies to reach you. If you have friends who don't care about miss chance, creating a concealing cloud of leaves can also be very beneficial in a fight.

Vernal Growth and Summer's Might should make you a friend of any front line fighter, and both Autumn Rot and Winter Frost are pretty cookie cutter 1d6/2 levels damage attacks.

Where druid's power lies is in their spell list, not their archetype. You have the ability to spontaneously summon nature allies, turning the numerical advantage in a fight to your party's side, bend nature to your will to call lightning from the sky or mend wounds, and there is far too much there to write in a short post so I would recommend https://rpgbot.net/pathfinder/characters/classes/druid/ guide. This series is a pretty well written (not perfect) guide to figuring out what will work well for you.


This archetype is, essentially, a way to avoid having a major dead class feature if you don't intend to use Wild Shape. The abilities aren't something you'll use as your main strategy, but rather something to supplement your spellcasting.
Something of note, though, is Vernal Growth's Standard Action touch Enlarge Person that targets any living creature. Usually, Enlarge Person has a 1 round cast time and isn't even on the Druid list, not to mention it being restricted to Humanoids.

Lady Asharah wrote:
The way I read it, the area *always* surges with live, even in deep dry desert, the ability is separated into the two parts, and the second part depends on "if the area can support plants". So in the desert you would get the burst of heavy undergrowth for 10 minutes, after which they will die in the sun. If they place can support plants, a (relatively) harmless circle of plants will remain behind, sort of as a mark of the druid's passage.

There's no other way to read it: absolutely nothing says there needs to be plants already in the area to use the ability, and the additional Plant Growth ability at 8th (the only thing that does require plants to affect) is not part of the same initial effect.

Siro wrote:
However, this appears to be material from PF1, and this is a PF2 forum. You may have more luck on the PF1 forums/you may get conflicting info based on PF2 mechanics.

Wouldn't it be nice if the PF1 section wasn't greyed out and pushed to the bottom as if to discourage remembering that PF1 exists? We'd have fewer mix-ups at the very least.


Thanks for the feedback, everyone :).

JiaYou wrote:

Are you saying though that you don't want to actually DIRECTLY contribute to combat, or you're saying you are finding it difficult to meaningfully contribute in general?

I suppose I should have been a bit more specific when I said my character wasn't "combat focused." He doesn't like killing anything except maybe undead, which he still finds unpleasant. I'm aware of most of the typical options a druid has to be a valuable contributor to combat, but in staying true to the character I avoid almost all damaging spells unless they're good aligned like Burst of Radiance. Sheet lightning is a good one, though. I always forget it only does 1 damage, and I love Plant Growth, but my ability to use it depends on whether Season's Veil works, you see. Oh and SNA IV to summon a Satyr is definitely in character for me.

Lady Asharah wrote:


Vernal Growth and Summer's Might should make you a friend of any front line fighter, and both Autumn Rot and Winter Frost are pretty cookie cutter 1d6/2 levels damage attacks.

I find I make frequent use of Vernal Growth and Summer Might, but after that I tend to wind up just cowering behind whoever I used it on.

I hope to make use of the archetype's abilities 1. because I think they're cool and 2. because they can hamper enemies, but they're not all outright offensive. I can justify doing 1d6 damage to fatigue people, but blowing them up just ain't my style.

Your answers to how Season's Veil functions were all clarifying and helpful, so thanks again, everyone. I'm gonna feel more confident wading into combat to support my friends now that I know my options better.

Just one more question I guess: any ideas how to use Season's Veil without also fatiguing my allies? Where it says "deal 1d6 points of [fire/cold] damage to other creatures in the area," I assume it means "all other creatures," unless I'm mistaken?


How to avoid affecting your allies? You've got the energy protection/resistance spells. :)

I'm pretty sure intelligent creatures with natural bludgeoning attacks can deal non-lethal damage, so you could just learn Terran and summon a whole swarm of earth elementals to knock out foes instead of kill them :)


JiaYou wrote:

How to avoid affecting your allies? You've got the energy protection/resistance spells. :)

I'm pretty sure intelligent creatures with natural bludgeoning attacks can deal non-lethal damage, so you could just learn Terran and summon a whole swarm of earth elementals to knock out foes instead of kill them :)

I worry about losing the turn(s) to pull that off, but we do have a fire-happy cleric, so I guess resist/protection from energy would kill 2 birds with 1 stone... I'm satisfied with that. I like the elemental idea, and my DM would definitely allow that. Thanks :)


Gnobel wrote:
I suppose I should have been a bit more specific when I said my character wasn't "combat focused." He doesn't like killing anything except maybe undead, which he still finds unpleasant. I'm aware of most of the typical options a druid has to be a valuable contributor to combat, but in staying true to the character I avoid almost all damaging spells unless they're good aligned like Burst of Radiance.

That's a BIG leap from one concept to another.

Basically the only effective Druid option for not just using Total Defense or spamming Burst of Radiance (great spell, but still not a good idea to restrict yourself to it without Spell Perfection and/or Magical Lineage) on your turns after your very limited buffs and battlefield control options are in place is Divine Fighting Technique(Sarenrae's Mercy). Sarenrae is your girl for basically any nonlethal build that isn't unarmed or a Vigilante, though she will still kick serious ass when the situation calls for it rather than being strictly nonlethal.
I do find it a little weird that you're okay with dealing lethal damage to Evil-aligned creatures when the particular spell used is Good-aligned but not otherwise.

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder First Edition / Advice / Season Sage (Druid) abilities All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.