Remaking a character.


Advice


So I've decided to redo my character Tara. Her original build has one level of Falcata Swashbuckler, one level of Bard, and the rest Vigilante. The backstory was that she's nobility that disguises herself to adventure. Her parents force her to take music lessons but she sneaks out to take magic lessons. The level of Bard covered both music and magic, but I think that it really doesn't do much in the way of magic with just one level.

I've started looking at the Vigilante archetypes and found Magical Child and Warlock. Both are spellcasters, though in different styles, and still have the dual identities. If I go with either of those, I can dump the level of Bard and just put a few skill ranks into Perform for any music.

I do want to keep the level of Swash since I would either have to take Exotic Weapon Proficiency or switch weapons if I dump it. Although not going with Swash would mean I could go Str based and dump Slashing Grace.

As for her feats, almost all of them are based around demoralizing foes through Dazzling Display. And I'm looking at her sheets and I don't think I actually wrote down what her traits were.

Any thoughts on what I should do with her?

Dark Archive

2 levels of Order of the Cockatrice Cavalier for Braggart so she gets Dazzling Display and a +2 morale bonus on attacks against demoralized opponents.
1 level of Rogue with the Thug archetype for Frightening so you get an extra round of demoralization in. If you get 4 or more rounds you can opt to have your opponents be Frightened for one round instead.
Memorable social trait and you are up to 3 rounds of demoralization on all opponents, at least.

If you're going for a Strength build with the Intimidating Prowess feat, you might as well go for 2 levels of Barbarian so you can add that Strength Rage and use the Intimidating Glare rage power, but that's optional. Skill Focus (Intimidate) is an obvious choice too. Precise Strike would be a nice Choice for the Cavalier's teamwork feat, as it works well with the Rogue's Sneak Attack.


Sinking every feat and multiclass choice into Intimidate is setting yourself up for failure, as with any one-trick pony, your fun ends the moment you encounter something immune to your one stupid trick. I wouldn't invest any more into Intimidate than you would any other trick you plan to use. Sure, Intimidate is fun, but chasing Frightened enemies is super lame. Generally, I want enemies to come to me, not run away from me. Lol. And when it starts to matter most, everything is suddenly immune to fear.

I like the Warlock archetype for this, personally. Mystic Bolts through a Conductive Falcata could be a blast.


Honestly, I can't seem to find any real 'wow' factor for the Warlock archetype except its a specilization-less Vigilante with some decent spellcasting. The Mystic Bolts are lackluster and take some fairly clever optimization just to make useful. Doing 1d6 plus 1 per four levels in elemental damage is ... meh. It really should do 1d6+1 plus 1d6+1 every four levels after (1d6+1 at 1st, 2d6+2 at 5th, 3d6+3 at 9th, etc). Really, the only way I can see to make those bolts useful is through dipping Mortal Usher to semi-progess the spellcasting and add positive/negative damage riders to the bolts.

If you have to chose between Magical Child and Warlock, go with Magical Child. You get to pick up spells from a spell-list that is (fairly well) designed for a 6th level caster rather than the truncated wiz/sorc spell list. I'll also second VoodistMonk's suggestion on avoiding on not putting all your focus on Intimidation. Try to focus a bit more on your familiar and how it can help you, since the Magical Child beefs up theirs a bit more than average.


A person in my discord group suggested the Masked Performer Bard. It fits the theme and gives both the magic and music I'm looking for while also having the two identities. It does give some social talents, though none of the vigilante talents. I'm a little torn.


I'd suggest going with the Masked Performer. Unless you have a specialization as a Vigilante (Magical Child and Warlock do NOT), you can't get any of the really good talents. And, unless you want to be a Zealot, there isn't very many other options for a spellcasting Vigilante.


Yeah, I think I will. I might make a Magical Child Vigilante some time later for the fun of it, but Masked Performer fits this character better.


Masked Performer Bard?! Nice. Razmir has a thing for masks, so I feel it is fitting for a Masked Performer.

I suggest casually worshipping Razmir, taking his Strength of Submission faith trait, and learning the Bard spell called Sow Thoughts... tell yourself Razmir is great, or whatever... something you are willing to actually believe. Anyways, it's a permenant compulsion, and the trait gives you a +1 attack and damage whilst under compulsion effects. Lol.

Are you still taking the level of Rondelero Swashy? You do get Weapon Finesse and Panache. Only pick up Ride and Swim for skills, but starting with full BAB and D10 hit die is nice. You could take Weapon Focus at level one due to that full BAB... this sets you up for Dazzling Display at 3, where it is most effective. Weapon Focus is a great feat to learn because you can flex into feats that have Weapon Focus as a prerequisite with your Stage Combat performance. Remember, you can use your Charisma in place of Intelligence for combat feats due to Swashbuckler's Finesse.

You will probably want Extra Performance relatively early on, to help "pay" for maintaining the fun performances you have access to, if you want to use them frequently. Taking a level of Swashy makes it so you can't take the Maestro of Society social trait... or at least not at character creation.


You could take Craft Wondrous Item without missing any CL with ranks in a Craft skill starting at level one, and using Master Craftman as entry. Maybe not worth it, but Craft Wondrous Item opens up some fun options...

Like crafting Green Shoanti War Paint, Heroism is a Bard spell, and it boosts your Inspire Courage bonus.

Or crafting a Mask of the Living God. You could even pick up Heal as a class skill with a trait... there are several... but crafting the mask only requires ranks in Heal, which is not a trained-only skill.

Please refresh me on Tara's race, and stuffs. Is she one of your family characters? Didn't you have some twins that were Dashing/Phantom thieves? Tara wasn't one of the thieves, was she? I should probably just use that there search function. Lol.


Tara is a human. No, she's not part of my family group nor one of the twins. I had a story idea a few years ago and I turned the 3 protagonists into Pathfinder characters. Alester the Magus and Kei the Warpriest are the other characters. I put both of those into my gestalt group and decided to take another look at Tara to see what a good choice for a gestalt for her might be. I decided on giving her a non-gestalt redo instead.

I think I'll keep the Swash level. I like my characters having diverse weapons whenever possible and falcatas are exotic weapons. I'd either have to change weapons or use a feat to get proficiency if I dump the class.


tara the metal gothic girl (sound strike bard/magical girl vigilant)
whit this 3 item creation will be great (craft wondrous items, inscribe magic tattoo and craft shadow piercing) since inscribe magic tattoo and craft shadow piercing do not take up a slot on the body, nor interfere with other magic items that use those slots, yoou could have 4 ring (2 normal ring and 2 tattoo ring)


DeathlessOne wrote:

Honestly, I can't seem to find any real 'wow' factor for the Warlock archetype except its a specilization-less Vigilante with some decent spellcasting. The Mystic Bolts are lackluster and take some fairly clever optimization just to make useful. Doing 1d6 plus 1 per four levels in elemental damage is ... meh. It really should do 1d6+1 plus 1d6+1 every four levels after (1d6+1 at 1st, 2d6+2 at 5th, 3d6+3 at 9th, etc). Really, the only way I can see to make those bolts useful is through dipping Mortal Usher to semi-progess the spellcasting and add positive/negative damage riders to the bolts.

If you have to chose between Magical Child and Warlock, go with Magical Child. You get to pick up spells from a spell-list that is (fairly well) designed for a 6th level caster rather than the truncated wiz/sorc spell list. I'll also second VoodistMonk's suggestion on avoiding on not putting all your focus on Intimidation. Try to focus a bit more on your familiar and how it can help you, since the Magical Child beefs up theirs a bit more than average.

What are you talking about? Mystic Bolts are a 1d6+1/4 yes, but they can: be used in a full attack, can act like weapons for feats/abilities, and target touch AC by level 5. At lv 1 with TWF you are doing 2d6+2; At lv 9 with ITWF you are doing 4d6+8 while targeting touch AC; By level 20 with Rapid Shot and GTWF you are doing 7d6+70 +7d6 elemental, all while targeting touch AC. To top it off Mystic Bolts can be used in melee and ranged at the same time.

High level spells don't matter as much as people like to make it sound, specially when it comes to buffs and utility. Even if attack spells did matter you can Just take Riving Strike to decrease enemy saves by 2. The real big brain move is to multiclass Magus Card Caster (to enchant) or Bloodrager (Blooded Arcane Strike).

As to the question of Warlock vs Magical Child vs Masked Performer the bigger question is what exactly do you want this character to do? Warlock is great at attacking and dealing damage; Magic Child is a Summoner without the Eidolon, great support spells and cool familiar but not much else going on there (The transformation sequence is a talent, this archetype just gets it for free); Masked Performer is a Bard poaching both Vigilante and Rogue.


Regarding the level in Swashbuckler for the Falcata. Honestly there is no problem with it 1 level of Swashbuckler has a lot of benefit.

However, you might not need Slashing Grace, why you may be asking? Simple, Vigilante (including Warlock/Magical Child) have access to Lethal Grace talent. That adds half your vigilante level when using Dex to hit and Str to dmg. Lethal Grace also works on Mystic Bolts.


Temperans wrote:
What are you talking about? Mystic Bolts are a 1d6+1/4 yes, but they can: be used in a full attack, can act like weapons for feats/abilities, and target touch AC by level 5. At lv 1 with TWF you are doing 2d6+2; At lv 9 with ITWF you are doing 4d6+8 while targeting touch AC; By level 20 with Rapid Shot and GTWF you are doing 7d6+70 +7d6 elemental, all while targeting touch AC. To top it off Mystic Bolts can be used in melee and ranged at the same time.

I know very well how the Mystic Bolts work with the Warlock. And how easily they are simply ignored with even a minor bit of elemental resistance. They are a neat trick that require you hyper specialize, devote a full attack action, and hope the enemy isn't protected from the elemental damage you are about to throw. I certainly hope you aren't battling a bunch of outsiders for any length of time.

In my eyes, the only thing that redeems the Warlock is that they get spellcasting and a few interesting Vigilante Talents. In fact, if I could take the spellcasting portion of the Warlock and slap it on the chassis of the Kineticist (minus the Composite blasts), I'd be incredibly happy with the result.

Quote:
As to the question of Warlock vs Magical Child vs Masked Performer the bigger question is what exactly do you want this character to do? Warlock is great at attacking and dealing damage; Magic Child is a Summoner without the Eidolon, great support spells and cool familiar but not much else going on there (The transformation sequence is a talent, this archetype just gets it for free); Masked Performer is a Bard poaching both Vigilante and Rogue.

I generally find the Bard to be a superior class in a lot of instances, but that is just because it suits my playstyle a lot more then other specialized classes.


DeathlessOne wrote:
Temperans wrote:
What are you talking about? Mystic Bolts are a 1d6+1/4 yes, but they can: be used in a full attack, can act like weapons for feats/abilities, and target touch AC by level 5. At lv 1 with TWF you are doing 2d6+2; At lv 9 with ITWF you are doing 4d6+8 while targeting touch AC; By level 20 with Rapid Shot and GTWF you are doing 7d6+70 +7d6 elemental, all while targeting touch AC. To top it off Mystic Bolts can be used in melee and ranged at the same time.

I know very well how the Mystic Bolts work with the Warlock. And how easily they are simply ignored with even a minor bit of elemental resistance. They are a neat trick that require you hyper specialize, devote a full attack action, and hope the enemy isn't protected from the elemental damage you are about to throw. I certainly hope you aren't battling a bunch of outsiders for any length of time.

In my eyes, the only thing that redeems the Warlock is that they get spellcasting and a few interesting Vigilante Talents. In fact, if I could take the spellcasting portion of the Warlock and slap it on the chassis of the Kineticist (minus the Composite blasts), I'd be incredibly happy with the result.

There are ways to get around elemental resistance. Ex: Using a sword, which OP stated they want to use a falcata. Regardless, there is always that one enemy type that a Player can't deal with unless hyper optimized. So unless you are saying that the meer chance of not being useful vs one type of enemy makes that archetype bad. But then you are calling out all characters that are based around controling an elements, as well as Paladins fighting in a campaign with only neutral enemies, Rogues fighting things that can't be sneak attacked, Skirmirsher Rangers fighting in against non favored monsters, anti-undead class fighting in a game with few undead, etc.

Following that standard 1/4 of the classes/archetypes are bad because they are thematic. Which theme is what makes them good.


Temperans wrote:
There are ways to get around elemental resistance. Ex: Using a sword, which OP stated they want to use a falcata. Regardless, there is always that one enemy type that a Player can't deal with unless hyper optimized. So unless you are saying that the meer chance of not being useful vs one type of enemy makes that archetype bad. But then you are calling out all characters that are based around controling an elements, as well as Paladins fighting in a campaign with only neutral enemies, Rogues fighting things that can't be sneak attacked, Skirmirsher Rangers fighting in against non favored monsters, anti-undead class fighting in a game with few undead, etc.

Its not a matter of ONE type of enemy. Its a matter of ANY enemy with even a minor resistance to the elemental damage. Resist 5 is going to outright cripple most of your damage potential and Resist Energy is very common spell for use by almost anyone with an ability to cast spells or drink a potion/use magic device. I only mentioned Outsiders because they commonly resist most of the energy types you are going to be able to use, and become common enemies in a lot of higher level games. Large amounts of other more 'supernatural' enemies have built in elemental damage resist.

Paladins have all the means they need to deal with non-evil enemies they encounter. Rogues can sneak attack a large portion of enemies and minor resistances when they can be sneak attacked (like DR) does not shut down their ability to do so. The only kind of game I can see a Warlock excelling in is a game that features mostly humanoid enemies that lack basic common sense to invest in elemental resistances.

Regardless of all this, the Warlock is not 'bad'. I just find little appeal in an ability like Mystic Bolts that is so limited. Even using a Falcata and getting the Conductive weapon property does nothing but give you a free 1d6+X damage adder once per round when you hit. Either Mystic Bolts needs it damage increased so that a Resist 10 won't completely shut it down, or it needs entirely reworked. Now, if Clustered Shot applied to elemental resistances and not just damage reduction, we'd be having a very different conversation.


Originally I just wanted to give Tara a bit more spell casting and some more combat use outside of just intimidation. I'm honestly torn between Magical Child and Masked Performer. Masker Performer only gets social talents rather than the vigilante talents and most of the social talents are kinda weak. But it fits the theme perfectly.


I would HIGHLY suggest the Masked Performer over the Magical Child for two very important reasons: 1) You are still a Bard in some of the most important ways (inspire courage and access to Masterpieces and, 2) You get Stage Combat to cherry pick a feat whenever you might need it (this even replaces suggestion, which I rarely see used). Getting access to a small number of rogue talents isn't bad either.

But, take my advice with a grain of salt. I am incredibly biased towards Bards and Skalds when it comes to the 6th level arcane casters (Skalds more so). Magical Child is not a bad choice at all and might have a slightly better overall spell-list, but Bardic Masterpieces are just so versatile and simply blend to flavorfully with the narrative of a Masked Performer.


Yeah, I think I'm going to go with Bard. Now I just need to pick out traits and new feats.

Think the Lingering Performance feat applies to the Stage Combat performance? Because that would be really cool. I'm doubting it though. Eh, I can still take the feat to use with Inspire Courage and so on.


I would check with your GM to be sure, since Lingering Performance specifies the 'bonuses and penalties' of your performance linger on. It might be intended to only extend the numerical aspects of the performance, but I would consider a 'bonus' feat fits that description well enough. Besides, the effect of the song (bonus feat) would end if you started another performance anyway, so its just saving you some bardic rounds in the end. No big deal.


Ok, so are there any feats that can give kinda flashy melee tricks? Other than the Combat Performance stuff. Those don't make any sense and doesn't look like they can be used in actual combat.


lol


Heather 540 wrote:
Ok, so are there any feats that can give kinda flashy melee tricks? Other than the Combat Performance stuff. Those don't make any sense and doesn't look like they can be used in actual combat.

There is a feat that let's you use them in actual combat, also the Gladiator archetype is a thing.

As for feats that give flashy melee tricks. There are too many to count. It's easier for you to pick something you want to do and search accordingly. Equipment, Armor, Weapon, and Magic tricks specially give some really flashy stuff.


Stylish Riposte looks pretty good. Though I'm not entirely sure I want to make her an AoO fisher.


Is it possible for a bard to be a tank? I'm thinking I want her to be able to direct attention away from her allies.


Tank? As a Masked Performer Bard?

Sunsilk Quilted Cloth armor could give you DR 2/bludgeoning versus melee and DR 3/- versus projectile attacks... it's not great, but neither are your options for casting in armor. Lol.

Your proposed level of Rondelero Swashbuckler trades away Derring-Do for Falcata Emphasis, so picking up the Vengeful Heart deed of renown for Resolve is sadly not an option. You do get Dodging Panache, which is could possibly help you survive... surviving is tanky, maybe?

The Masked Talents could get you Stand Up and Defensive Roll, which could possibly be kind of tank-y-ish, in a way... I don't know.

I think there are a lot of ways you could make this character useful, but being a tank is not one of them. Lol. You could do some fun stuff defensively with Parry & Riposte and Dodging Panache. Offensively you could taunt/debuff the battlefield with Dazzling Display, or invest in Dirty Tricks since you could take (or flex into) the Dastardly Trick feat to force Will saves to remove your tricks by spending Panache (which you will have if you take the level of Swashbuckler). To "direct attention away from her allies" you could invest in the Antagonize feat... should pair well with Parry & Riposte, so be sure you have Combat Reflexes.


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As a charisma character you have the potential of being the tankiest member of the party, enough to rival a monk. But you do need to invest to do this.

Osyluth Guile let's you add Cha to AC as a dodge bonus. Combat Expertise let's you get more AC, and it's not like you are looking to be the best at dealing damage. That also enables Crane Style.

Inspire Heroics gives you +4 to AC, Courageous weapon increases it to +6. Moment of Greatness increases it to +12. Mood Swings and a few other feats may make this number higher.

Then you may take a few class dips to double up on dodge bonuses equal to Charisma from different sources. (This get by the FAQ as it only affects untyped bonuses).


As a Human, a 20pt buy could get Tara stats something like 12,16,13,10,10,17... you could put the 13 in Strength to qualify for Power Attack, since the Falcata doesn't mesh well with Pirahna Strike... but you said you wanted to "tank", so I put the 13 in Constitution (to be raised to 14 @ 4).

I would wait until level 7 to take Antagonize, since it will always take a standard action... level 7 is where you can start a performance as a move action... this allows both to be used in the same round, if one so chooses.

Osyluth Guile could be legit if you went with Crane Style... even just grabbing the prerquisites and flexing into the style feats with Stage Combat.


Ok, it looks like being tanky is probably not the way to go. Her flitting around the battlefield while attacking might be fun ALA Circling Mongoose. It won't get online until level 9 though thanks to all the prereqs.


Ok, it looks like being tanky is probably not the way to go. Her flitting around the battlefield while attacking might be fun ALA Circling Mongoose. It won't get online until level 9 though thanks to all the prereqs. Though I could use Stage Combat to use it at level 7 once I get Spring Attack.


IF this is for Org Play and the character is 4th level or less, I think it is more effective to simply stop playing it and move on.

For a Home Game with GM approval it is something for fun & enjoyment. A feat offers Martial Versality which is worth it for flexible second liners.


I haven't put her in a game yet. So she technically is level zero.

Someone on Reddit mentioned Courser Swash. It gets some bonus feats and stacks with the Swash archetype I was already using. It gets Dodge as a bonus at level 1 and Spring Attack at level 4. So that saves on regular feats. And it's a full BAB class so I'll qualify for Circling Mongoose at character level 7 if I only take 4 levels of Swash.


Always tradeoffs for this type of stuff, especially when trying to reach an ability at a specific level.

Do keep in mind that Course Swashbuckler 4 has some other benefits like bonus damage (Precise Strike), AC bonus when Spring Attack (Nimble), +10 untyped to base speed, and Wall Running. Having said that it's probably best to decide during play as that might affect your choices.


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Stop playing and move on? No way. Tara could be perfectly playable...

She's Human, so most likely can expect that extra feat. You get Weapon Finesse from the level in Swashbuckler, so you could get Dodge and Mobility out of the way at 1. With your one level of full BAB, you qualify for Spring Attack at level 5 (where a pure Bard would be forced to wait until level 7). You can flex into Circling Mongoose soon after you get your Stage Combat performance...

You get Stage Combat at Bard 6 (character level 7), and have BAB +5 at that point... you can flex into Circling Mongoose one level later. Starting a performance is still a standard action until that level (level 8), for you anyways, since you have the level of Swashbuckler. Bard 7 is when you can finally start to multitask, and Bard 13 is when you finally get to really come out and play. For Tara, it will be level(s) 8 and 14, respectively, when she starts to free up her action economy enough to actually start a performance and do literally anything else in the same round.

Speaking of action economy... Spring Attack is a full-round action with but a single attack. It's BAB +4 requirement means Tara can't take it [Spring Attack] until level 5. Barroom Brawler (the feat Azothath was talking about) also has a BAB +4 prerequisite, and might be a smarter choice for level 5 [instead of Spring Attack] if it wasn't for the 1/day limit on its use. Barroom Brawler has better action economy and duration/doesn't cost rounds of Bardic Performance... but 1/day is a real bummer. At least you can use Spring Attack whenever you want.

Feats could look something like this...

1. Weapon Finesse
1. Dodge
1. Mobility
3.
5. Spring Attack
7.
9. Circling Mongoose

Or

1. Weapon Finesse
1. Weapon Focus Falcata
1. Slashing Grace
3. Dazzling Display
5.
7.
9. Antagonize

You have options... probably going to want Extra Performance, either way.


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VoodistMonk wrote:

Stop playing and move on? No way. Tara could be perfectly playable...

That statement was clearly for Org Play. In Org Play it takes a special certificate (GM cert from GenCon) to rebuild a character. A person might have 4-5-10 if they did it alot and it cost them $500+ for the con, hotel, and then the volunteer time EACH TIME. There are other options on that cert like playing a rare race so it is a mixed use thing and at this point most have been used.


So I'm liking the look of Courser Swash. I can take one level of that, stacking with Falcata Swash, then one level of Bard. That way I have the dual identities and magic/performances without waiting longer. Then 3 more levels of Swash before going fully into Bard. I don't think I need Mobility to get Circling Mongoose after that since I'll have Spring Attack for free.

The feats that way would look something like this:

1: Dodge (Class bonus), Weapon Finesse (Class bonus), Weapon Focus, and Slashing Grace (Racial bonus).

3: Lingering Performance

5: Spring Attack (Class bonus as this would be Swash level 4) and then another feat. Perhaps I can put Dazzling Display here.

7: Circling Mongoose

Not entirely sure about after that. Motivating Display could be useful to give morale bonuses to the group when I'm using the Stage Combat Performance instead of Inspire Courage. Violent Display lets me use Dazzling Display as an immediate action when I confirm a crit or land sneak attack. I think there's a feat to gain sneak attack.


I don't know if giving up Opportune Parry & Riposte for Dodge is really worth it. In my opinion, getting Spring Attack as a bonus feat in place of a bonus feat you are otherwise free to choose is not worth taking the extra levels of Swashbuckler/losing the extra levels of Bard. Delaying the Bard's action economy for starting a performance is painful. Plus, Opportune Parry & Riposte pairs really well with Antagonize.

It's your character, though, and you do get to have both Circling Mongoose AND Dazzling Display if you go your route.


Yeah. Losing Parry is pretty hard, but I think it might still work. She still has way more magic and performance than she did originally and can contribute more in combat. Turns out there's a bard spell that does give Parry, just not the Riposte afterwards. Not amazing, but better than nothing.


Ok, so I think having the feats up to level 7 is good enough. I can pick out later ones when I actually play her. So now on to traits.

Rich Parents does fit the theme, but man is it boring. All it does is give you some extra starting gold. After that, you get nothing.

Anatomist is good for crit fishing. And of course there's good ol' Reactionary.


Forget about Reactionary... it takes up your combat trait, which is always better spent on Accelerated Drinker. The mastery of one's own action economy is paramount. You can get a +2 to Initiative from a regional trait, called Paragon of Speed. Although, for a Charisma-based character, I prefer to take Voice of Solid Things for my regional trait to put Craft of Charisma.


If you don't like Rich Parents, you can always get ancestral weapon or a similar trait. Alternately, a trait that lets you earn more gold via performance.

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