Gunslinger feat analysis.

Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion

Gunslingers have it cut out for them in a good way with feat choices. Almost all of them seem pretty good. Might just be my overall excitement though.

What are the opinions on class feats over the career of a gunslinger. What are the duds and traps and what are the feats that players will treasure when they get them?

For me, any feat that boils down to "thing + reload for an action" is good, mostly because I like the offered fluidity in action composition without having to sacrifice the ability to sling guns.
They're feats that will remain relevant throughout your adventuring career, which is something a feat should strive to do.

Sovereign Court

I agree. I played the drifter in one-shot the rot and your way's reload action works well enough in melee, but you're not always in melee. So a reload feat that does something nice in the other cases would be helpful.

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For level 1 Munitions Crafter is such a nice thing for me. Getting free ammo is nice if your DM is more stingy with it or likes ammo to be to be a rarer thing in their world. Also has nice follow up feats with alchemical shot (not technicallly a follow up feet but might as well be one)
Stand outs for me are:

Fake Out: super fun feat, making your slinger a great support. Its not quite clear if the reaction unloads your weapon but from my understanding it doesnt.

Risky Reload: Great Dps boost!

Called Shot: Another great way of making your slinger a supporter!

Paired Shots is realy strong but i wish it came online at level 2. Bit annoying that you have to wait so long until your dual wielding concept really comes to fruition.

Twin Shot Knockdown: You gotta hit both attacks, but thats why you have legendary proficiency. Knocking prone at range is amazing!

Duds feel like:

Warning Shot: Very thematic but this is literally just intimidating glare that requires you to spend an action to reload. Sure, the added reach can be nice but not really worth it.

Blast lock allows to not invest into thievery, but since you are dex class thievery isnt a bad investment either way so i think the feat is more niche.

Dual Weapon Reload i am rather disappointed by. I think it should at the very least interact with the slingers reload, so a dual wiedling pistolero or spellshot can make use of it. Or, if it doesnt interact with slingers reload, it should reload both guns with one action. Right now it is one of the most "feat-tax"y feats out there.

Pistol twirl would be good if it also reloaded the gun imo.

Blast Tackle: Ok now this is a great feat actually. Why do i put it under duds? Because it perfectly encompases what Vanguard is supposed to be but comes online way too late. Vanguard is supposed to be the close range shotgun wielder but all the feats that really enforce this come online too late. Blast Tackle and Siegbreaker are what the Vanguard should be about but only come online at 14/15.

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Fake Out in my opinion is one of the most powerful feats in the game, and one of the few things that might help guns actually be competitive. Always being able to Aid attack rolls from range is already powerful (hello, One For All), but this costs only a reaction and doesn't even unload the gun. At level 5 with Cooperative Nature you can have +20 vs a DC of 20, for a 55% chance to give your ally a +3 to hit and 40% to give them a +1. And it only gets better as you level.

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Deflecting Shot, basically allies have +2AC just by you having a loaded gun and a reaction, and you know when it will make a difference.

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Alchemical Shot is one I'm unsure on. It has a lot of upsides:
1) Avoid resistance by making the whole attack energy (like Sonic and laugh)
2) Apply weakness damage
3) Apply persistent damage (and if this is weakness... ooh boy is it going to hurt)

But misfire on a miss hurts and it has backlash damage there. You're fairly accurate, and you can use things like Risky Reload to offset the misfire action damage, but...

I'm also unsure about Shattering Shot - I just don't think that it does enough damage to be worthwhile since you don't get the splash/other effects of a bomb. 3d8 AoE isn't a ton at level 12 for functionally two actions. Sure, it's not affected by MAP, but...?

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I wouldn't say there are any trap feats per se, except maybe the Pistolero's Challenge and definitely Come At Me!. The former is just pretty weak, giving you a small amount of damage on a class that is very limited in the number of attacks it can make each round. At the cost of an action and giving the enemy that same bonus that is really terrible, especially considering they most likely get a lot more from that bonus than you do. The latter is at best almost useless and at worst your death. The action cost still remains for each Challenge, making it a complete non-starter for a regular 3 or 4 round fight, especially on your already action-starved class. It is also generally not a very good idea to give several enemies a good mechanical and RP reason to focus you, being squishy and all that. Taking Pistol Twirl and Show Stopper is still fairly action-intensive, but almost objectively better in every regard.

Still, there are a couple of feats and feat synergies that are good to keep in mind.

1) Alchemical Shot/Munitions Machinist - neat, but if you only want the bombs for use with Alchemical Shot, taking Munitions Machinist immediately is unnecessary. AS only starts scaling when you use level 11+ bombs, so you need to be level 14 to make those. Until then, you can realistically just buy a few level 1 bombs to use at 3 gold or so a piece.

2) Smoke Curtain - Not bad for emergencies, but for (maybe) the same amount of actions and the relatively small investment of 53 gp, you can just throw a greater smokestick that lasts for 1 minute instead of only 1 round.

3) Trick Shot - A bit too situational to be really worth it. Common adventuring locations like forests, caves and city streets typically don't feature the explosive materials you would need. The other use of the feat isn't much better off. Also, Called Shot is a thing that exists at that level.

4) Deadeye - A massively weaker version of a 6th-level inventor feat. Sounds cool and is kinda cool, but mechanically it is pretty much obsolete at this level. If you really need the effect, wands of see invisibility cost 160gp a pop, which is basically pocket change at this level. Buy a couple or one/two 5th level versions if you have the money.

5) Shattering Shot - While potentially throwing bombs beyond their technical maximum range is funny, the small-ish radius and incredibly minor damage dealt (usually 2d6 or 3d6 with a basic reflex save) make this a rather questionable choice outside of very, very specific circumstances. Even if this is absolutely your jam, you can likely reach a much better outcome by just using a scatter weapon with Alchemical Shot.

6) Dance of Thunder - Cool, but you have a rather decent chance to just have a normal turn that makes you fatigued, since for some reason at level 14 this doesn't get the usual "make all attacks, then your MAP increases afterwards" kind of deal.


But as a whole, I completely agree, the gunslinger feat list looks really tasty :D

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Being able to feint from 60 feet away with pistol twirl seems like a no brainer with fatal firearms. Is it worth it? Showstopper is a little confusing since you could only pull off 2 attacks afterwards. I guess it's to diversify your feint with targets with different perception DCs.

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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Karmagator wrote:
I wouldn't say there are any trap feats per se, except maybe the Pistolero's Challenge and definitely Come At Me!.

Not a trap per se, but Slinger's Reflexes is a feat I see people get really excited about at first until you squint at it and realize the way it and a gunslinger's reactions are constructed make utilizing it properly fairly difficult.

Deadeye - A massively weaker version of a 6th-level inventor feat.

It's really wild to me that Deadeye and Visual Fidelity are in the same book. I mean I know class feats aren't meant to be 1:1 comparable but the difference in effect is just so big considering Deadeye is double VF's level.

Correction for my post: I always forget that you cannot cast see invisibility on other people, so Deadeye is not that bad actually. Unless you have a non-primal caster dedication, anyway.

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Karmagator wrote:
Correction for my post: I always forget that you cannot cast see invisibility on other people, so Deadeye is not that bad actually. Unless you have a non-primal caster dedication, anyway.

Or take Trick Magic Item.

Pistolero's challenge is a hard sell, but I actually think it's great for dual repeating hand crossbow builds. You can much more easily set up a paired shot every round and get the most use out of the bonus damage from challenge.

Pistoleros Challenge is probably only really good for Dual wielding builds. paired shots is actually rather good. You can go with a capacity weapon + an Air repeater.

That said "come at me" is really confusing. If it allowed you to use challenge on multiple enemies for one action it would be decent, but like this it is incredibly confusing.

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