Improvised Weapons Vigilante Build Advice


Advice


Hello everybody.
My group is about to start Hell's Rebels and i want to play a new class for me, the vigilante. I used to make dex based builds, so this time i was thinking to go for str, so i wanted to build an avenger vigilante, but i couldn't help but notice this specialization tends to go for the dex route.
My initial idea is build an avenger specialized in improvised weapons, his gimmick is use the city as his weapon (just like the Miller's The Spirit hero). I don't know if is viable. I have a build in my pocket but uses the brawler hinyasi (because the unarmed damage to improvised weapons) archetype. I not a fan of multiclass because the social talents of the vigilante will be a great help in this AP, so i will preciate if anybody can give me a few pointers about the build. Im open to go full dex if that lets build it more easly.

I considering:
Feats:
-Shikigami style, Mimicry and Manipulation
-Catch Off-Guard
-Improvised Defense

Traits:
-Surprise Weapon

Talents:
-Enviroment Weapon
-Signature Weapon (improvised)
-Lethal Grace
-Shield of Fury

Any advice will be more than welcome

Dark Archive

get a travelers anytool. use it as a sledge *technically* you could get one crafted at a higher cl for no additional cost.

so for 250gp you can effectively have a +5 6d6 damage dealing weapon weapon. without the higher caster level its "only" a +2 6d6 weapon

The Exchange

Name Violation wrote:
get a travelers anytool. use it as a sledge *technically* you could get one crafted at a higher cl for no additional cost.

Can I get a citation/reasoning on how you can get a higher CL item without paying for it?

Thanks.

Dark Archive

Belafon wrote:
Name Violation wrote:
get a travelers anytool. use it as a sledge *technically* you could get one crafted at a higher cl for no additional cost.

Can I get a citation/reasoning on how you can get a higher CL item without paying for it?

Thanks.

theres a faq about CL and item creation. the long -> short of it is a cl1 and cl 20 pearl of power are exactly the same in cost and everything else except dispel attempts

link

unless the crafter of level 1 pearls of power are getting a massive discount that i missed, there's no price change based off of item CL adding or subtracting, especially when no effects are CL dependent

The Exchange

I see where you get that interpretation. However it contradicts the text on page 460 of the CRB.

Quote:
For potions, scrolls, and wands, the creator can set the caster level of an item at any number high enough to cast the stored spell but not higher than her own caster level. For other magic items, the caster level is determined by the item itself.

It looks like that FAQ was trying to correct the problem of CL17 1st-level pearls of power without creating a new table (which would have been difficult to fit into a new printing of the CRB). However they ended up creating a conflict/loophole.

In addition to the rules conflict, saying that you can set the CL wherever you want can cause unforeseen power glitches. Like the one proposed above.


Metal Witch wrote:
I used to make dex based builds, so this time i was thinking to go for str, so i wanted to build an avenger vigilante, but i couldn't help but notice this specialization tends to go for the dex route.

Er, what? Strength based should be the norm for Avengers.

Also, since improvised weapon aren't refined for specific combat purposes, you'd be forced to use small items (counting as light weapons), and that's really antisynergetic with Shikigami Style.

Metal Witch wrote:
-Signature Weapon (improvised)

Improvised weapons are really unclear in regards to what they count as weapons for, but unless your GM is extremely generous, this does not work. A "type of weapon" for the talent and respective feats is an entry in the weapon table.

Metal Witch wrote:
My initial idea is build an avenger specialized in improvised weapons, his gimmick is use the city as his weapon (just like the Miller's The Spirit hero). I don't know if is viable.

Heavily depends on the GM. Since this is mainly flavor, I think the GM should let you find good improvised weapon in most circumstances, because the alternative (you carrying a sledge hammer with you all the time) doesn't make the game any more interesting.

Metal Witch wrote:
I have a build in my pocket but uses the brawler hinyasi (because the unarmed damage to improvised weapons) archetype.

Shikigame Style basically killed the Hinyasi, as the feats don't work for the archetype, and are just way better.

Other talent suggestions:
Take 'em Alive: You have no attack roll bonus, this helps.
Mad Rush: This is your 12th level talent, period.
Steely Resolve: This lets you ignore most will save effects until the fight is over. You definitely want spellcraft with this, though.
Animal Patron is surprisingly good, and can grant Evasion (mouse), bonuses to saves against mind-affecting (wasp), or bonuses to various skills.

Social talents:
Companion to the Lonely: If you can make the flavor work for your character, this is stronger than most vigilante talents.
Ancestral Enlightenment and Well-Known Expert: Thoese two beef up your knowledge skills, and together with Skill Familiarity they make you so good at skills you're putting any Rogue to shame.
Many Guises: More disguise/infiltration options, might be especially good in that campaign.

Name Violation wrote:
get a travelers anytool. use it as a sledge *technically* you could get one crafted at a higher cl for no additional cost.

Demanding this sounds like an express lane to "rocks fall you die". The TAT say it can form tools, but nothing says it can magically gain mass, and a 2 lbs sledge hammer just isn't as potent, and definitely shouldn't count as a 2d6 improvised weapon. Meanwhile, crafting a wondrous items at a different CL has no rule support.

The FAQ is only for Pearl of Power, and doesn't seem to be based on the rules at all. In any case it makes no mention of increasing the caster level.

The Exchange

Derklord wrote:
Name Violation wrote:
get a travelers anytool. use it as a sledge *technically* you could get one crafted at a higher cl for no additional cost.

Demanding this sounds like an express lane to "rocks fall you die". The TAT say it can form tools, but nothing says it can magically gain mass, and a 2 lbs sledge hammer just isn't as potent, and definitely shouldn't count as a 2d6 improvised weapon. Meanwhile, crafting a wondrous items at a different CL has no rule support.

The FAQ is only for Pearl of Power, and doesn't seem to be based on the rules at all. In any case it makes no mention of increasing the caster level.

Name Violation is relying on one specific part of that FAQ:

Quote:
For example, a 3rd-level wizard with Craft Wondrous Item can create a 1st-level pearl, with a minimum caster level of 1. He can set the caster level to whatever he wants (assuming he can meet the crafting DC), though the pearl's caster level has no effect on its powers (other than its ability to resist dispel magic).

Then you go through the rest of that FAQ and you can come to the conclusion that it is extensible to any magic item that does not have a required caster level. I'm pretty sure that (like I mentioned above) the FAQ writers were trying to avoid having to make a table of pearl of power CLs but ended up creating this possible reading.

As for the forms of an any-tool: check out Adventurer's Armory 2.

AA2 page 23 wrote:

TYPICAL IMPROVISED WEAPONS

Most improvised light, one-handed, and two-handed weapons appropriately sized for a Medium character should deal 1d4, 1d6, and 1d8 points of damage, respectively. The following examples of improvised weapons adhere to this guideline.

Light Weapons: Arrow or bolt (as melee weapons), book, bottle, broken bottle, bucket, chisel, frying pan, kitchen knife, rolling pin, scissors, skull, spade, straight razor, or tankard.
One-Handed Weapons: Branding iron, candlestick, chain, chair leg, crowbar, femur, grappling hook, scabbard, scepter, shovel, or walking stick.
Two-Handed Weapons: Brazier, chair, digging bar, metal pipe, ornamental greatsword, pitchfork, small statue.

The Exchange

Following on from the above, Adventurer's Armory 2 has a lot of good advice for playing (or GMing) a character who relies heavily on improvised weapons. I personally like "expanded improvised weapons" which gives the GM some options for additional qualities a particular improvised weapon might have.

Samples:
disk-shaped (plate): range increment of 20' instead of 10' but destroyed after throwing.
heavy (sledgehammer): deal damage one size category larger but puts user off-balance and takes -2 penalty to AC.

Dark Archive

The any tool can literally be used as any tool, like a sledge

Sledge
Source Ultimate Equipment pg. 57, PRPG Core Rulebook pg. 158
Price 1 gp; Weight 10 lbs.
Category Adventuring Gear
Description
This heavy, two-handed hammer is normally used in carpentry and other construction tasks, and is also useful for driving in tent stakes to help secure campsites in areas with strong winds. If used in combat, treat it as an improvised earth breaker


Name Violation wrote:
The any tool can literally be used as any tool, like a sledge

Nope, this is not actually what it says. It says it can form any tool, but there is more to a sledge than just the form.

Dark Archive

Derklord wrote:
Name Violation wrote:
The any tool can literally be used as any tool, like a sledge
Nope, this is not actually what it says. It says it can form any tool, but there is more to a sledge than just the form.

It can be folded, twisted, hinged, and bent, to form almost any known tool. Hammers, shovels, even a block and tackle (without rope) are possible. It can duplicate any tool the wielder can clearly visualize that contains only limited moving parts, such as a pair of scissors, but not a handloom.


The text of the Traveller’s Any-tool clearly states that it can “duplicate” any tool. A duplicate is an exact copy of something else. Therefore when it has been made to form a sledge it should have identical statistics. As for the Any-tool only weighing 2lbs in its unformed state and not the 10lbs that a sledge weighs this is immaterial. The any-tool is a magical item and therefore breaks the normal laws of physics. A Campfire Bead has negligible weight but turns into a 2ft tall pile of burning logs. It’s MAGIC! I don’t see any problem with the Traveller’s Any-tool turning into a sledge or doing the same improvised weapon damage of a sledge.


Hey y'all: I don't think the OP cares all that much about the rules behind the Traveler's Any-tool and would like to use their environment as a weapon instead. Yes, it's less optimal than using a sledge. Who cares?

Build Idea: Infiltrate. Improvise.:

Human Splintersoul Vigilante
Vigilante Specialization: Avenger
Vigilante Alignment: CG
Social Alignment: LN

Alternate Racial Traits (Needs GM Approval):
Focused Study

Traits:
Combat: Surprise Weapon
Campaign: Any

Feats:
1.) Catch Off-Guard
1.) (Human Bonus): Skill Focus (Disguise)
3.) Shikigami Style
5.) Shikigami Mimicry
7.) Shikigami Manipulation
8.) (Human Bonus): Skill Focus (Perception)
9.) Eldritch Heritage (Rakshasa)

Social Talents:
1.) Renown or Obscurity
3.) Sudden Change (Archetype
5.) Many Guises
7.) Immediate Change (Archetype)
9.) Skill Familiarity (Disguise, Bluff, Perception, Intimidate)

Vigilante Talents:
2.) Environment Weapon (Urban; 5th level choose Underground)
4.) Shield of Fury
6.) Vital Punishment
8.) Steely Resolve

20 pt-buy:
STR: 15 (+2 Racial = 17 ; +1 @ Levels 4 & 8)
DEX: 12
CON: 12
INT: 12
WIS: 12
CHA: 14

Build Rationale:

The vigilante seems it would be a very flavorful and appropriate choice for the campaign. Splintersoul allows you to play infiltrator a bit better than most, though many archetypes would work great. Choose either Renown or Obscurity depending on whether or not you want your social identity to be a noble or a typical lawful citizen (which would effect which campaign trait you select). Be in your vigilante identity for combats.

The Social Talents, Focused Study, and Eldritch Heritage selections help you be a better infiltrator. You are the king of disguise.

You probably can't assume most improvised weapons can be used with weapon finesse, so Lethal Grace probably won't work sometimes. Going with strength helps with reliability, which practically entails getting Power Attack. You might even want to delay Environment Weapon to level 4 because of this.

Improvised Defense is pretty bad - It doesn't work when you attack, and you want to be attacking. Shield of Fury will help somewhat with AC, though I admit AC is something of a problem with the above build still. I would shuffle the point-buy a tad to get 14 DEX and consider Dodge before that trait.

Lastly, Vital Punishment just works too well with Shikigami Style to ignore, though I wouldn't go any further down the Vital Strike chain even if this build goes to high level. Avengers get Mad Rush at 12 - It's better than what Vital Strike can do, even if it exacerbates the bad AC issue. Still, sometimes you can't charge, and that AoO is nifty.


My GM is ok with Shikigami + Hinyasi.
Improvisational Focus solves the weapon focus issue.

Derklord wrote:
Metal Witch wrote:
I used to make dex based builds, so this time i was thinking to go for str, so i wanted to build an avenger vigilante, but i couldn't help but notice this specialization tends to go for the dex route.

Er, what? Strength based should be the norm for Avengers.

Also, since improvised weapon aren't refined for specific combat purposes, you'd be forced to use small items (counting as light weapons), and that's really antisynergetic with Shikigami Style.

Metal Witch wrote:
-Signature Weapon (improvised)

Improvised weapons are really unclear in regards to what they count as weapons for, but unless your GM is extremely generous, this does not work. A "type of weapon" for the talent and respective feats is an entry in the weapon table.

Metal Witch wrote:
My initial idea is build an avenger specialized in improvised weapons, his gimmick is use the city as his weapon (just like the Miller's The Spirit hero). I don't know if is viable.

Heavily depends on the GM. Since this is mainly flavor, I think the GM should let you find good improvised weapon in most circumstances, because the alternative (you carrying a sledge hammer with you all the time) doesn't make the game any more interesting.

Metal Witch wrote:
I have a build in my pocket but uses the brawler hinyasi (because the unarmed damage to improvised weapons) archetype.

Shikigame Style basically killed the Hinyasi, as the feats don't work for the archetype, and are just way better.

Other talent suggestions:
Take 'em Alive: You have no attack roll bonus, this helps.
Mad Rush: This is your 12th level talent, period.
Steely Resolve: This lets you ignore most will save effects until the fight...


Milkshaketeer wrote:

Hey y'all: I don't think the OP cares all that much about the rules behind the Traveler's Any-tool and would like to use their environment as a weapon instead. Yes, it's less optimal than using a sledge. Who cares?

** spoiler omitted **

** spoiler omitted **...

Thank you very mucho for the insight. I will go full dex because the rest of the frontliners are going str builds, we need some finesse in the party.

I am using your advices and thinking in use Shield of Fury to try two weapon fighting buuuut... i need to figure how to shield bash with improvised weapons. I am taking Improvised Defenses but isn't enough to BS my way to bash with improvised weapons. Do you have any idea how to do it?


Metal Witch wrote:
I will go full dex because the rest of the frontliners are going str builds, we need some finesse in the party.

What for? I've yet to see a group that needs a dex-based character.

Metal Witch wrote:
My GM is ok with Shikigami + Hinyasi.

Note that unless the GM makes anouther beneficial houserule, you can't shut off the Improvisation Training ability, meaning you'd lose out on damage whenever you pick up something with more than 1d6 base damage.

Metal Witch wrote:
Improvisational Focus solves the weapon focus issue.

That lets you qualify for Weapon Spec (which a Vigilante can take via the Combat Skill talent), but you still can't make use of the Signature Weapon talent.

Metal Witch wrote:
I am using your advices and thinking in use Shield of Fury to try two weapon fighting buuuut... i need to figure how to shield bash with improvised weapons.

If you go dex-based, you don't need Shield of Fury - the whole purpose of the feat is to allow TWF on a str-based character.

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