Tiefling Barbarian


I just realized that I never actually finished this character. So I'm coming back to it.

I originally tried to make a natural attacking ranger but it wasn't working out. So I'm going barbarian instead. The Beast Totem rage power line gives me claws at level 2 and pounce at level 10. I can get a bite from my race, and there are several items that give a gore attack.

I don't want to do much in the way of multiclassing since that would delay pounce. But Dragonblood Shifter would give me Bite, Wings, and a Tail Slap. Should I go for a quick dip into that or stay pure barbarian until level 10 is done?

My reading of the dragonblood shifter, I never played a shifter, is that you trade out your claws for that. Thats just my opinion though.

Fully minmaxed advice:

This is I think the Gold Standard for Natural attack Builds:
Abyssal Ragebred Primalist-Rageshaper (the Bloodrager archetype, not the shifter one) Bloodrager.

Feat tree:
Level 1: Second Feature
Level 3: Power attack
Level 5: Arcane strike/combat reflexes
Level 6 Bloodline Feat: Abyssal has like, 3 decent options, if you are starting at higher level, pick power attack here.
Level 7: Iron Will/combat reflexes
Level 8: Use primalist to get first 2 levels of pounce totem
Level 9: Extra Rage power clear mind
Level 9: Bloodline feat: Toughness
Level 11: Finish pounce tree via extra rage power

Bloodline: Level 1 Abyssal claws, Level 4 Abyssal bulk, trade away Level 8 power, take level 12 power, trade away level 16 power.

Why this combo:
--Abyssal bloodrager claws scale pretty well, rageshaper makes them scale better. At level 4, the Claws are 2x 2d6 and count as magic, at level 8 they become 3d6, at level 12 3d6 flaming

--Compared to a Barb, you start with 3 primary (2 claws and 1 gore) and 2 secondary attacks (hooves) at level 1. Your next primary attack is a bite, which is more easily attained then a gore

--Compared to a Barb, you have spell casting

--Arcane strike adds +2 damage to all your natrual attacks at the level you take it.

--Potentially dip in fractured mind spiritualist to get good at will saves and be a prety decent asset to your party out of combat.

Now, there are variations of this.

First, pounce can be overrated, and has certain substitutes such as incredibly cheap stagger proof boots which allow you to moves up to your speed, once per day, as an immidiate action, or surprising charge from oracle of battle etc.

Second, an Abyssal Bloodrager is generally speaking sporting a 20 feet reach by virtue of having a wand of long arm and bloodraging, this reach makes it so that a 5 foot step can set up a full attack.

Cloak of tentacles gives 2 extra tentacle attacks, fleshwarped scorpion tail gives a poisoned tail strike. If you have a way to get permanent wings, 2 feats (skill focus fly and strong wings) get you wing slaps.

If you go with Mightypion's Abyssal Bloodrager, I would suggest taking Combat Reflexes at 3 in place of Power Attack. Levels 5 and 7 would be Arcane Strike and Blooded Arcane Strike, respectively... Blooded Arcane Strike activates Arcane Strike every time you rage. You can take Power Attack at 6 with a Bloodline Feat.

At level 7, your Arcane Strike is adding +2 to all your attacks... and you should be able to afford the Gloves of Arcane Striking, making all of your attacks do splash damage equal to your Arcane Strike bonus. At level 10, this goes up to +3. Power Attack is adding +4 to all your primary attacks, and +2 to all your secondary attacks at level 7. And +6/+3 to all your primary/secondary attacks at level 10. It's a pretty solid combination, netting you a minimum of +4 to all your attacks at level 7, and a minimum of +6 to all your attacks at level 10. The splash damage is just icing on the cake.

I guess I could go with a Bloodrager rather than a Barbarian. Fits the theme just as good.

If you go for blooded arcane strike route, this frees up your swift action to use take 2 levels of elemental blood rage power at 8, this adds +2d6 of 2 different elemental damages to your attacks(+d6 if you are just raging), and thus acts as a potent dpr steroid.

The issue with this character is that it is kind of "too good" at low levels.
It is relatively likely that you do more damage then the rest of your party combined.


You've made a very common Primalist mistake, which I've also done once. You don't qualify for Extra Rage Power (says so in the ability) so you'd need to replace your 12th level bloodline power unless you want to delay pounce to lv 16.

Also, Rageshaper doesn't increase the dmg dice of your claws afaik. It needs to be a spell granting the natural attacks.

Good catch on the extra rage poer, it says so in the Primalist ability.

One could perhaps get around this by dipping one level into furious guardian, which does not have the language concerning not counting as a rage power prereq, but that archetype is kind of weirdly written and probably requires being human.


Bestial Aspect (Su)

At 4th level, whenever a rageshaper gains a natural attack through the use of a polymorph spell, he can increase the damage done by that attack by one die. If the spell grants multiple natural attacks, the rageshaper must choose one kind of natural attack for the ability to enhance. At 9th level, if the rageshaper’s altered form grants him a new mode of movement, that movement’s base speed increases by 10 feet. This is an enhancement bonus. If the rageshaper’s bloodrage powers already grant natural attacks or alternate modes of movement, then the bonuses granted by bestial aspect also apply to these bloodrage powers.

Since the claws are from his abyssal bloodline, they would get increased.

Ok. So it looks like I can't get pounce until either level 10 barbarian or level 12 bloodrager. Unless I go with 4 levels of Were-Touched Shifter. It gives a hybrid wild shape and one aspect gives pounce. I can only use it lv+wis hours a day, but that's a minimum 5 hours when I get it. Said aspect changes claws to bite and talons. I can then go into either barbarian with the Fiend Totem power, or bloodrager with the Abyssal bloodline. Bloodrager might be better, since I can get gore with items more easily than I can with claws.

I recommend stagger proof boots on basically any character, as its basically a once per day mini pouncy.


Whoops. There must be something about those bloodrager archetypes making people miss stuff...


@Heather 540

Yeah, Weretouched is strongly recommended for early level nat attack builds.

There's actually two aspects that gives pounce (Tiger and Deinonychus) but it sounds like you're talking about the dino. One thing you should know is that the alternate shifter claws... are optional. You can always choose to simply get claws instead. Since the Hybrid Form counts as your normal form for the purpose of Shifter Claws, this means that you'll get five primary natural attacks from those 4 levels in weretouched.


The Wis focus makes it a poor multiclass with Bloodrager, so I'd go for Barb in that case.

Heather 540 wrote:
Said aspect changes claws to bite and talons. I can then go into either barbarian with the Fiend Totem power, or bloodrager with the Abyssal bloodline.

No need, because "A weretouched also counts as being in her natural form for the purpose of determining whether she can extend her shifter claws." That means WTS4 with Deinonychus aspect has 1 bite, 2 talons, and can still grow 2 claws, and has pounce, all form the class. Afterwards, you can multiclass into whatever you want. Barbarian or Bloodrager certainly works, although personally I recommend going into a gish class, to get access to flight and extra vision modes (e.g. See Invisibility). Note that VMC: Barbarian would grant rage, if you like that, and a natural attack build can spare the feats.

There're other ways to get flight, of course, like VMC Wizard with the Air school, or the Planar Heritage->Airy Step->Wings of Air chain accessible via the Pass for Human racial trait.

Hammer The Gap's a decent feat when you have 6+ attacks, right?

Heather 540 wrote:
Hammer The Gap's a decent feat when you have 6+ attacks, right?

It is… questionable at best… on a full round with 6 attacks you get a maximum of +15 damage total (before crits) on the round at +0, +1, +2, +3, +4, +5… if any of those attacks miss you reset to +0 again. The bonus damage from the feat is just too inconsistent and unreliable…

There is also an argument to be had that the damage output is actually only +10 total at +0, +0, +1, +2, +3, +4… this argument is due to the exact wording of the feat, that it does damage equal to the number of previous consecutive hits, which would mean that the first hit does no bonus damage, and the second hit is the first consecutive hit which also does no bonus damage since the number of “previous consecutive hits” would still be zero at this point… but this argument is often rightfully dismissed due to it making the feat virtually unusable. Though purely on grammatical accuracy this argument would be correct…. If you have consecutively hit something 2 times, then you have scored 1 consecutive hit. For something to be consecutive it must follow another. The inclusion of the word “previous” in the feat is what creates this problem.

Regardless of which interpretation your table uses though… its just not a good feat…

Hammer the gap is indeed pretty bad, even with a build that has 6+ attacks.
Another issue is that it is a pain to code in roll 20, and is likely even worse in PnP play in terms of making your turns considerably longer.

It isnt exactly that geometry feat, but it does move your attack routine from "execute one macro" to "arbitrate each attack individually as each attack informs the next attack".

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Heather 540 wrote:
Hammer The Gap's a decent feat when you have 6+ attacks, right?

No, because even if it works perfectly, it's a win more. Meaning it's only helpful when your character is already at their best (i.e. you can full-attack the target and all/most of your attacks hit), which is exactly the time you least need your feats to help you.

Good feats to increase damage would be Power Attack, Spirit Oni Master, Mutated Shape, and Demonic Style, although I would advise against getting all of those, and recomment rounding out your character instead.

Of course, what feats to take heavily depends on what class you want to go into. Or classes, even.

Rhino charge can considerably up pounce builds, as it basically allows you to move, and then ready an action to charge, circumventing things like corners, difficult terrain (provided your move action gets you out of difficult terrain), allies in the way etc.

I would second Derklords suggestion for rounding up your character instead.

If you are any sort of Bloodrager, a dip in fractured mind is a high value option of shoring up your will save to "maybe best in the party" level.
You could also dip into spiritualist as a wis 12 barbarian. Shield spell access is always good.

Oracle dip also improves willsaves and sets up rage cycling.

Clear mind, if you have some manner of access to rage powers, is a potent shore up weakness skill as well.

Ok, so no Hammer the Gap. Understood.

I don't plan on using any more classes than Shifter and either Barb or Bloodrager. Barbarian is a bit simpler than Bloodrager and doesn't need me to focus on a second mental stat. Unless there's a Bloodrager archetype that switches things to Wis.

For feats, there's the obvious Power Attack at level one. Mutated Shape nets me a Sting attack at level 7. Recovered Rage lets me regain a use of rage when I kill my opponent. Shifter's Rush lets me wild shape as a free action when I charge. Raging Brutality gives me extra damage. Sadly, Raging Vitality doesn't work with Unchained Barbarian. That would be a nice combo.

Heather 540 wrote:
Sadly, Raging Vitality doesn't work with Unchained Barbarian. That would be a nice combo.

Yeah… especially since Unchained Barbarian is better for two-weapon/natural weapon barbarian builds while standard barbarian works best with Two-handed weapon builds…

Ok. Due to BAB requirements I think this is the plan up to level 13.

1: Power Attack
3: Blank
5: Shifter's Rush
7: Mutated Shape
9: Recovered Rage
11: Blank
13: Raging Brutality

I can fill in the blank spots with Improved Natural Attack Claws and Talons. Improved Natural Armor is another choice.

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