Possible class features


Gunslinger Class


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I'm just throwing a couple of possible (if not necessarily balanced) class features out there. These are made under the assumption that guns/crossbows actually become balanced vs other weapons (see here under "weapon design" for an example)and that the gunslinger can therefore afford to lose legendary proficiency. And he does lose it ofc ^^. Apart from the first two - which I think are what we definitely want - these are also not necessarily meant to be implemented together.

I'm imagining the gunslinger as the "reloader" and close-ish range burst damage dealer. Some playsyles - like the sniper - will obviously differ from that, but still.

[Btw things that are written like this are my comments on the intent of abilities or offer clarification. It should make things more readable and easily separated.]

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Quick Reload (level 1, free action, part of the mechanical core of the class]
Requirement: You interact to reload or your next action is to interact to reload

You are so experienced at reloading your weapon that it no longer requires your conscious attention. Immediately before or immediately after you interact to reload, you may use an action that is not a Strike (or any action that includes a Strike as a subordinate action) or an Interact action to reload.

[Reloading weapons is our thing and currently it is a bore. Plus things like Running Reload are mandatory. This gives your reload some spice and the class an actual unique selling point. You know, like every other class in the game. It requires some refinement, but I like the principle.]

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Flexible grip (level 1, passive)

You can reload your weapons even in the most awkward of positions. You do not require a free hand to reload.

[This goes beyond making dual-wielding actually viable. If you have combat climber, you can hang off a wall and still reload. Or you can grapple the enemy, if you would ever want to for some strange reason. It would open so many fun possibilities, even for single weapon users.]

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Close-range expert (level 1? 5?)

You are at your strongest when you can see the white of their eyes. Targets in the first range increment or reach of your weapon do not get the bonus to AC of lesser cover against you. You only gain this benefit if you are holding at least one weapon with reload 1 or higher.

[Guess who hates lesser cover. It's me :D. The third sentence would have to be improved to prevent some clunky interactions with sword and pistol builds. It was added to prevent this being used with non-reload ranged weapons, as this is definitely a potential archetype feat.]

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Perfectly loaded (level 1)

Your expertise with reloading weapons allows you to optimize the potential of any shot. After you reload a weapon you wield, your next attack with a reload 1 or higher weapon or a one-handed melee weapon deals 1 additional precision damage.

As your Gunslinger level increases, so does your additional damage for Perfectly Loaded. Increase the amount of additional damage by one at 3rd, 5th, 7th, 9th, 11th, 13th, 15th, 17th and 19th level.

[Consistent strong hits with little variation is a cool and somewhat unique direction this can go in. Basically discount ranged barbarian. This shouldn't step on any toes and provides you with a necessary damage boost. This could become a problem with the Precision Ranger, but I think their higher damage potential - up to 24 (13,5 average) on one shot vs 10 guaranteed on up to two hits - is fairly balanced. I thought about including some dice somewhere, but all the variations I could think of were already taken by other classes.]

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On guard (level 3?)

You are always on your guard. Your actions with the manipulate trait do not provoke reactions. This does not apply to actions made to cast a spell, such as providing material or somatic components.

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Up close and deadly (level 11? 9?)

You can fire your weapons even in the closest of quarters. Ranged attacks you make do not provoke reactions.

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Impossible reload (level 17-19)

Your skill at reloading is unmatched. Once per turn when you use Quick Reload, you can use two separate actions or a two-action activity instead of just one action. You can use either action at any point immediately before or after your Interact action to reload. One of these actions or part of the activity can be an Interact action to reload.

[Probably super overpowered, but really cool.]

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Deadshot (level 19, 3 action activity)

Frequency: Once per hour.

Your shots are beyond lethal. Make a Strike with a weapon with reload 1 or higher. On a hit, you deal an additional 10d10 precision damage. On a critical hit, the target must also succeed at a Fortitude saving throw against your class DC or be immediately slain; this save has the death and incapacitation traits.

[This is essentially a buffed version of the Eldritch Archer's Arrow of Death (level 18). The one hour cooldown instead of something like 10 minutes is there because this is already extremely strong and should be your "big, red button", not a thing you can just do every combat.]

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Grit and Tenacity [level 5, 7 or 9]
Same as the feat.

[This is just so thematic, it makes sense as a feature rather than a feat.]


Some of those I think could be class feat options instead, perhaps. Quick Reload is a good idea, just cement the class as the reload specialist, and it enables using other skills in combat nicely - Recall Knowledge makes good use of int and wis. Intimidate or feint or make a distraction off CHA. Or just stride, stride/step always good.

It probably needs a note that your hands are occupied? I'd say that it doesn't allow use of anything with the Manipulate or Attack traits. Probably also rule out spell components, though with Manipulate locked out you're limited to Shield and the like anyways (Verbal components only). Risky Reload remains useful because it lets you load and fire in the same action.

For On Guard, I might just limit it to Reload actions specifically as a feature. Have a class feat that expands it to all Manipulate actions.


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I don't agree with a lot of features there but here something for quality of life, the perfectly loaded would be better if started with 2 precision damage and then increase every 4 lvls by 2, that will make that have same as the swashbuckler dice progresion, so at 5th, 9th, 13th and 17th, this still gives the same damage but frontload it a little.

Liberty's Edge

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I would like the Gunslinger to be able to benefit from flanking even at range.


These are amazing and I love them. Quick Reload in particular would make me want to pick up Pistol Twirl for feinting at range, considering that you'd actually have the action economy to make good use of it.

For Close-range Expert, consider the following:

Close-range Expert (level 1? 5?)

You are at your strongest when you can see the white of your enemies' eyes. Targets in your first range increment do not get the bonus to AC of lesser cover against your ranged attacks using ((firearms or crossbows) or (weapons with 1+ reload)).

As currently written, the Gunslinger class specifies firearms and crossbows rather than reload 1+ weapons in most places (because screw slings, I guess?) so the first set of parenthesis in the end statement is meant to keep that distinction. The last set of parenthesis is for if that gets relaxed and the Halfling sling staff sniper gets its day in the sun.

Either way, the wording here would keep the intent of the ability without opening it up to bows. You might want to add in the option of thrown weapons specifically for Way of the Drifter as well.


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Serial Loafer wrote:
These are amazing and I love them. Quick Reload in particular would make me want to pick up Pistol Twirl for feinting at range, considering that you'd actually have the action economy to make good use of it.

That was exactly what I was thinking of as well ^^. That is why I didn't limit it to specific actions, but excluded some. Being essentially quickened from level 1 would be a tad strong :P

Serial Loafer wrote:

For Close-range Expert, consider the following:

Close-range Expert (level 1? 5?)

You are at your strongest when you can see the white of your enemies' eyes. Targets in your first range increment do not get the bonus to AC of lesser cover against your ranged attacks using ((firearms or crossbows) or (weapons with 1+ reload)).

As currently written, the Gunslinger class specifies firearms and crossbows rather than reload 1+ weapons in most places (because screw slings, I guess?) so the first set of parenthesis in the end statement is meant to keep that distinction. The last set of parenthesis is for if that gets relaxed and the Halfling sling staff sniper gets its day in the sun.

Either way, the wording here would keep the intent of the ability without opening it up to bows. You might want to add in the option of thrown weapons specifically for Way of the Drifter as well.

I specifically wanted to include everything but two-handed melee weapons and bows. This way we include all reload weapons and even the drifter's melee weapon. Thrown weapons and the like are kinda accidental, but it doesn't hurt to include them.

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