Better support for draw and drop slinger


Gunslinger Class


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

An interesting thing I have noticed about the gunslinger, looking more closely at it, is that there really are 2 different paths for the gunslinger to go with their firearm usage, and right now only one of them is really supported.

Direction 1: Invest in 1 weapon that you really focus your wealth and character resources into. This is the direction that the playtest class is best suited to support as it lines up very well with many of the most powerful feats (Firearm Ace, running reload, reloading strike, Dance of thunder) as well as the PF2 action and wealth economy. This play style is already well supported but it has some bugs to it.

The ways all have drawing a loaded weapon as their primary first round shtick. This is fine if you are welding a martial firearm, as you are only losing out on 2 points of damage on that shot, but with simple firearms and crossbows, drawing a loaded weapon is a bit of a bummer. You are basically losing out on 4 points of damage with firearm ace. But it is only for the first shot and then you are reloading your fancy gun so you will be getting the full benefit of your firearm ace every round after.

Direction 2: play the brace of pistols character who quick draws cheap disposable weapon after weapon.
There is a tiny bit of feat support for this style, and the hint that we might get a magic bandolier or something similar for handling the massive cliff of effectiveness this build will face as weapon runes become more prevalent, but this style is entirely impossible with crossbows (maybe not a problem, maybe as it should be), and the real problem here, is that quick draw, the one feat really playing into this style, will always leave you with an unloaded gun, so you can never benefit from any of the interesting reaction abilities that would otherwise work really well with this style of play. I.E: Wasting a round from your carefully set up Arquebus decked out with runes is going to feel pretty wasteful compared to fire and forgetting a hand cannon shot to give your alchemist the opportunity to attack again with their failed top level bomb attack , only using your fighter like proficiencies and ignoring cover.

I think that a great way, beyond the magic bandolier, to make this style work even better is to have a 1st level free feat that does something cool (other than giving you a strike) when you draw a weapon. Maybe an intimidating draw, that lets you make a demoralize action when you interact to draw a weapon or something like that to make drawing a weapon to have a loaded gun in hand for after your turn is over not such a dead space for the class. Also, if crossbows are going to be a part of the class, it might make more sense to either have a separate firearm ace feat specifically geared off of drawing a weapon instead of reloading a weapon, as that fits a lot better in my narrative of the class anyway than reloading, but at least would be a cool separate option.

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