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D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder / Re: Power's Tier List for Pathfinder
« on: July 10, 2020, 04:49:52 PM »
I found it amusing as well that they assumed the tier lists revolved around optimization stunts, because really any class can reach Tier 1 with sufficient optimization.

The tier lists only operate under the assumption that you know your class and how to play it, not that you are doing some kind of optimal game-breaking tech. What makes 9th level prepared casters Tier 1, for instance, isn't the fact that they get 9th level spells, but the fact that they have an extremely expansive suite of solutions to virtually any sort of problem and they get those spells earlier than anyone. At most they need 1 day to prepare all the spells they need (or also, in the Druid's case, to dismiss and recruit a new animal companion with a new build) and obtain a tailored solution to utterly trivialize the problem the party is facing. 6th level casters typically do not have full access to their spell lists without stunts or have more limited spell lists to draw from (Warpriests for instance do not get domain spells, Magus has a more limited list and is penalized for trying to get equal-level Wizard spells, Alchemist has a rather limited list as well), they tend to get their spells a bit later to boot, and they're less likely to be capable of becoming fortresses unto themselves who auto-solve any problem in a single spellcast or a few spellcasts if it's a non-combat task.

Wizards on the other hand can easily shapeshift into elementals with large temporary hitpoints while retaining spellcasting capability, utterly subdue entire encounters of enemies in a single spell, summon monsters to annihilate whatever stands in their way with extreme prejudice, place contingencies to teleport themselves away from chance of death, make simulacrums and undead armies, create walls of iron and fabricate them into armaments fit to supply a regiment, divine their enemies' every secret, read people's minds, mind control their enemies, thrive underwater or in outer space, teleport around with ease, and the list just goes on and we haven't even touched the level 7+ spells. Druids can shapeshift into an extreme variety of forms while retaining spellcasting ability and collect +15 AC without any penalties just by wearing a +1 Wild Dragonhide Full Plate and then a +1 Wild Tower Shield (since in wild shape they are no longer wearing them but still get their AC bonuses, thanks to the wild property - oh, and this is not counting things like Magic Vestment or Barkskin), can fly and earthglide through dungeons with trivial ease, can abuse wild shape for all manner of poisons with extreme DCs, can dismiss and acquire new animal companions for free by doing a 24 hour ritual and then proceed to build new animal companions in different ways for their encounters (which you can take very far), can summon hordes of beasts/elementals/etc. to murder whatever is in the druid's path (alongside the druid's own animal companion), summon some satyrs to charm or make suggestions to entire crowds for social situations, create entire fortresses with stone shape, move earth, and wall of stone, arm large numbers of people with ironwood and wood shape spells, scry out the positions of their enemies, interrogate animals, plants, even stone for secrets, cripple armies with winds, thrive in water and outer space (or even buried in stone), teleport massive distances through trees and plants, and loads more before we break into level 7+ spells. And neither of these two examples have even left Pathfinder Core or involved any feats.

Now a sufficiently well-played 6th level caster can readily reach T2 or even break into T1, but that isn't the norm. Reaching T2 involves some actual mastery of your class and cleverness (or rods of Dazing Spell metamagic, as ways to abuse this will swiftly make themselves apparent to you once you go down this road). And with game-breaking intent really anything can become T1, the most basic example being using Use Magic Device to activate, say, scrolls of Summon Monster above your level, or using Magic Craftsman + Craft Wondrous Item feats with ranks in Craft (Candle) and making Candles of Invocation to obtain Gate spells for less than half price long before anyone should be casting 9th level spells (if you are playing Core only, you don't get Master Craftsman but you can still have your Ranger pick up Craft Wondrous Item and use Profession (Candlemaker) to destroy the game with Candles of Invocation at level 7). Another basic way to achieve T1 is to simply use a Leadership feat to get a T1 cohort. Even a Commoner can become Tier 3 simply through a sufficiently clever combination of feat selection, trait selection, skill usage, racials, and/or investing into a wide array of handy magical and non-magical items to give you a plethora of solutions to various forms of problems. Highly clever players tend to excel in just about any class even when they're not doing game-breaking tech. But I do not list these classes as T1, etc. simply because you can do this.

D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder / Re: Archivist in Pathfinder?
« on: July 10, 2020, 05:06:39 AM »
Strictly speaking Shaman can dump charisma negative and still poach a single Wizard spell per day, as long as he has positive int. It's just more rewarding to have positive cha since you can get more than one spell per day this way. Another way to gain access to all Wizard spells as Divine spells is a Shaman, Cleric, or Druid with the Dreamed Secrets feat. Oracles have everything from Dreamed Secrets to Ancient Lorekeeper archetype to Arcane Archivist revelation from the Lore mystery to the Spirit Guide archetype using Arcane Enlightenment as Shamans do (to get around the FAQ saying "Oracles have no ability to prepare spells" just get the Versatile Spontaneity feat and Magical Epiphany feats) and probably some other stuff I missed, including ordinary mystery spells.

By the way, with the Quick Preparation feat, it should be possible to use Balanced Scale of Abadar to give yourself prayerbooks once per week and quickly prepare the spells on them if you're doing partial spell preparation, but you'll need to advance Balanced Scale beyond max level with the Evangelist prestige class. Abadar's Evangelist boons aren't very impressive though (aside from the Glibness SLA, that is), and this trick only comes live at level 13 (plus you get a dead level from Evangelist).

An easier trick would probably be to just prestige into Daivrat and use Prestigious Spellcaster to fix the level penalty while either scribing your own scrolls of anything you want to keep or transcribing those spells into your prayer book, if possible. Loremaster is still the best way to go on the PrC front, however.

D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder / Re: Power's Tier List for Pathfinder
« on: July 09, 2020, 12:37:24 PM »
I found it interesting that they instantly assumed that this tier list was based on 9th level spell selection or tried to write it off as being a 3.PF list (neither of which are remotely accurate). Seems like they were just rushing for reasons to be dismissive, really.

D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder / Re: Power's Tier List for Pathfinder
« on: July 09, 2020, 08:09:52 AM »

Incidentally, it's not getting to use Wish at 17 that makes the Bard crazy. It's getting well over 30 daily free uses of Limited Wish (no component cost necessary, unless you are emulating a spell with over 1k gp material component) at level 13 that makes it T1. And when I say Bard (Music Beyond the Spheres masterpiece) I am saying it's only T1 once you have that masterpiece. Of course, you can also reach Tier 1 at lower levels just by abusing Legato Piece on the Infernal Bargain for free Wishes at level 11 or using Dominate Person to get your own pet Wizard or whatever, but at that stage you are doing specific optimized plays to break the tiers, whereas becoming T1 with Music Beyond the Spheres requires no stunts. You just use it and you're overpowered with just about every spellcasting solution at your disposal. At most the "stunt" is to use Music Beyond the Spheres to hand yourself free Restoration on demand to remove its own ability drain.

Tier bumping is easily achieved through optimized play even independent of archetypes. It's somewhat rare for archetypes to achieve actual tier bumps, honestly. Internal tier movement does happen though. 

D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder / Re: Archivist in Pathfinder?
« on: July 08, 2020, 07:17:56 AM »
All Wizard illusion spells are available to all spellcasting classes through the Veiled Illusionist prestige class. This PrC only allows you to add 10 Wizard illusion spells to your spell list, but that's enough.

Filidh Bard and Reliquarian Occultist make all their respective class spells available as divine spells, btw. Shaman class makes the entire Wizard list available as divine spells through the Arcane Enlightenment hex of the Lore spirit (Wandering spirit means that every Shaman can do this, on demand, unless their int sucks). You can also get Wall of Stone as a 4th level spell from the Stone spirit, which is pretty good stuff. In addition if they are Shabti race Shamans (or Oracles), they can add psychic spells to their spell list as their favored class bonus. Honestly, why play an Archivist when you can just play a Shaman and dip a level of Loremaster.

Don't underestimate the Void domain for adding flight spells and planar binding spells to your spell list. The Isolation subdomain even gives you Wall of Force and Prismatic Wall. Greed and Solitude can also give you Create Demiplane and Greater Create Demiplane. That said Shamans making divine scrolls of all Wizard spells should be a thing since every Shaman can use Arcane Enlightenment through their Wandering Hex.

Honestly a class's spellcasting prowess does not really depend on his spell's level but the power and functionality you get through his spellcasting. There are plenty of crazy spells between levels 1-4 anyway. Now Paladins typically fill the following roles in a party: Damage dealer, damage sponge, healer, and party face (although he is more restricted in that capacity, given his code of conduct).

The Paladin's spell list typically lends itself to the following: Self-buffing, defensive buffing, healing, and diplomacy / truth-telling / minor investigation. There are also minor bonuses to other skills and a few slight debuffing options (mostly Prayer and Archon's Aura). There are also a number of options to hate on evil creatures and undead, which is largely redundant functionality. At 4th level the Paladin gains access to more unusual abilities like Invoke Deity and Archon's Trumpet. The best race for spells is Half-Elf of course, since you gain Paragon Surge (at a level penalty...) and Resilient Reservoir (which, with a bit of full attacking + two weapon fighting without feats on yourself for 1 damage each, lets you quickly charge up the reservoir for large skill bonuses whenever needed). Generally the best debuffing ability the Paladin has is Dispel Magic (assuming the Paladin has Magical Knack to go from -3 caster levels to -1), especially if he has the Destructive Dispel feat, since you can not only strip away buffs but also render all sorts of magical equipment useless (although a Lesser Metamagic Rod of Maximize Spell might be warranted to get a good duration. Another, subtler (and PFS banned) spell good for debuffing is Quick Throwing which allows you to full attack with thrown weapons (since it does not prohibit you from using it with alchemical weapons, unlike Quick Draw). So now your Paladin can go around throwing Tanglefoot Bags and other useful things like a normal person could with a Quick Draw feat in 3.5.

So the Paladin is generally lacking in the following fields:
  • Skill monkey: Resilient Reservoir with an Improved Improvisation feat to make checks untrained largely solves, but feat taxes are ugly and Resilient Reservoir only becomes available at 13th level. However, if you invest your few skill ranks into getting a wide range of skills trained, you would not need these feats. If you want to go out of your way you can prestige into Evangelist, but this will prevent you from collecting non-Evangelist Deific Obedience boons at higher levels, and you will be giving up favored class bonus, hit die, and BAB for Evangelist boons, more AC, more skill points, and more class skills. Spell-wise a wand of Heroism would help, and getting Gallant Inspiration (with a lesser metamagic rod of maximize spell) through the Bard list is not bad either. It's also possible to take True Skill as a 1st level spell (assuming you have the Magical Knack magic trait to bring the Paladin up to -1 CL from -3 CL), but the bonus doesn't become much good until you have a caster level of at least 6.
  • Sneaking around: Shadow property, possibly Improved or Greater variants, on armor and wands of Invisibility should solve this one, especially if you are doing a dex-based Paladin. Would help to get Stealth as a class skill through traits or racial traits.
  • Trapfinding: Really, you should not be doing this with a Paladin, since you cannot get Perception as a charisma-based skill and you are a cha-based class. Paladins are pretty much the class that can (and probably should) dump wisdom (and int). Skip trying to do this. You can get wands of Aram Zey's Focus (if your GM allows it, take the Trap Finder campaign trait instead), add Perception as a class skill (this is worth doing anyway), get Disable Device as a class skill (really, not good for Paladins), and invest a Skill Focus into Perception and Disable Device (the Focused Study alternate race trait of Humans provides. Add masterwork thieves tools for the circumstance bonus, and I hope you are playing a dex-based Paladin. You should probably get Heroism as a spell or wand for the buff to skill checks too.
  • Battlefield control: Here is something the Paladin is generally bad at. Getting the Caves subdomain as a Sacred Servant, Grease from the Bard list with Unsanctioned Knowledge, and a wand of Obscuring Mist alone will work wonders for a Paladin's battlefield control capabilities. Alternatively, Smoke subdomain provides Stinking Cloud, Bard list can provide Grease, Pyrotechnics, and Slow (which is a rare non-mind-affecting will save). Throw in a wand of Wall of Ice and your Paladin is oddly potent here.
  • Debuffing: A wand of Blistering Invective works wonders for intimidating groups of enemies. Developing extreme AC and using Archon's Aura will provide a debuff. Prayer also works. Touch of Gracelessness from the Bard list is also usable here (especially if you have a lesser metamagic rod of Maximize spell), as well as Crushing Despair.
  • Disabling: Stinking Cloud from smoke subdomain, Hideous Laughter, Silence (especially if you silence yourself and proceed to grapple an enemy caster, in which case you can just use a wand), Slow, and Hold Monster through Unsanctioned Knowledge work.
  • Mobility: Worship Abadar, take the travel domain, and get Oath Against Fiends and your Paladin can teleport fairly well between Dimension Door, Word of Recall, and Plane Shift. Unsanctioned Knowledge can also provide Expeditious Retreat, Jester's Jaunt and Dimension Door through the Bard list.
Battlefield control and disabling are the most oddly effective additions you can make to a Paladin, it seems. Debuffing is not so much the way to go. There is also just improving general out-of-combat utility. You can either do that by abusing divinations, where the best way is probably to not go Sacred Servant and instead take mount bond, use the Monstrous Mount feat for a Griffon companion, then use the Totem Guide archetype to gain Augury and Divination, among other spells, but you can also gain them through Unsanctioned Knowledge or by gaining an animal companion through the Animal Ally or Exotic Heritage (Sylvan) feats, but those are more expensive in feats and Griffons are probably the best companion to have if you're going to give up the ability to switch between animal companions. Or, probably just worshiping Torag has you covered, since getting Fabricate and Major Creation as 3rd level spells is extremely useful and lets you build just about everything, really. Fortifications, traps, etc. You name it. Your creativity (and ability to make relevant skill-checks, but the Voices of Solid Things region trait lets you turn Craft into a cha-based skill).   

D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder / Re: Archivist in Pathfinder?
« on: July 07, 2020, 06:24:01 AM »
Secret of Magical Discipline is absurd, period. PF crafting rules let you skip crafting prerequisites by adding a +4 to DC for each prerequisite skipped anyway, so you don't need to know the spells unless you are creating things like wands/staves/scrolls/potions.

Balanced Scale of Abadar (use Prestigious Spellcaster feat to cover the dead level) can also be used to gain divine scrolls of any spell once per week, but it doesn't last long enough to scribe into your spellbook normally, not even with a Cypher Magic feat.

Here are some more spells worth nabbing for an archivist:
Blood Transcription
Share Shape (You can use Exotic Heritage -> Eldritch Heritage (Sylvan), Animal Ally, and Eldritch Heritage (Arcane), or Familiar Bond - Improved Familiar Bond gives full familiar features - in order to gain animal companions or familiar, and help yourself to hours/lvl duration Beast Shape II)
Create Pit (Caves subdomain of Earth domain provides)

And depending on how you read this, this feat would allow you to transcribe spells from spellbooks into prayerbooks: Ritualistic Preparation.

If you're going to use Paragon Surge, you should probably take the Emergency Attunement feat so you can swap all the associated choices instead of being stuck for the day. Also, FYI, the Self-Realization subdomain is an Apocrypha subdomain and as such requires the Acolyte of Apocrypha faith trait to be available.

The Exceptional Aid teamwork feat would work better for turning a +2 bonus into a bigger one.

D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder / Re: Archivist in Pathfinder?
« on: July 05, 2020, 05:03:23 AM »
Alter Summoned Monster, but it's a broken spell.
Arcane Concordance (if we're using Filidh Bard to make divine spells out of Bard list, but the spell isn't exactly useful for divine casters)
Blessing of Fervor
Shared Training (if you are doing special things with teamwork feats - Bonded Mind with Share Spells comes to mind)
Paragon Surge (Self-Realization subdomain of Strength/Liberation always matches spell to caster's race)

This would be entirely too rare to get as a divine scroll under normal circumstances, but Alchemical Allocation (the Antiquarian Investigator archetype makes the alchemist list available as arcane spells, opening them up to cross-spell list stunts) would be a powerful addition.

If you're looking to make the Archivist crazier, consider prestiging into Loremaster for a single level and taking the Secret of Magical Discipline feat, at which point you can make your own divine scrolls of any spell you want. Provided that you have a +7 int modifier, you can get the Secret of Magical Discipline feat as your level 1 secret. Pathfinder prestige classes sure are balanced.

Really depends on the optimizers in question. System mastery is a very important qualification for system design, however. Destructive testing and Same Game Testing also has its place in balancing. Otherwise you end up with idiots who like to eyeball balance in terms of what is "too strong" in their view while ignoring issues they don't care about, and so end up more concerned with stopping martials from being able to take five foot steps during a cleave action and mundanes from being able to use Quick Draw to full attack with alchemical weapons than whether it is a good idea to create a super Sorcerer which gets a ton of ridiculous power-ups for no apparent reason (like Jason Bulmahn).

IIRC TOME was designed as a better 3.5 by optimizers.

The funniest thing is that if they took out all the penalties, it still wouldn't be worth taking anyway. It would only see use on rare occasion for Brawlers and the like with their martial flexibility.

Right now the only use for it is to exploit Fungal Blisters (preferably Maximized) to do extreme amounts of damage, although the Wizard casting list has Serren's Swift Girding anyway.

Synthesist is honestly not good. Using it is a loss of Summon Monster and loss of action economy. Regular Summoners are better.

That said, you can still easily break PF polymorphing with poisons, unusual movement types, size-based tricks, and extreme numbers of natural attacks, among other things, and you're still far better off polymorphing than not. Overall PF has the same balancing factor against polymorph as 3.5: Pray the players aren't clever enough to know how to truly take advantage of it. Bear in mind also that as a special perk of PF polymorphing rules, any special abilities you gain through polymorphing use the polymorph effect's spell DC now, so there are some truly wild things you can do with PF polymorph. A Druid with Ability Focus (Wild Shape) would easily gain +2 to DC for every single ability acquired through Wild Shape, and that's without using things like Power Attack + Cornugon Smash + Cruel Amulet of Mighty Fists silliness, equipping spiked armor on top of your polymorphed form for iterative attacks on top of natural attacks, or the Planar Wild Shape feat for celestial/fiendish templates so you can one-turn kill whatever you want.

Min/Max 3.x / Re: Fun Pathfinds
« on: June 14, 2020, 07:05:04 PM »
Well here's an unusual item:
Price 20,175 gp; Slot body; CL 9th; Weight 20 lbs; Aura moderate abjuration
Source Pathfinder #113: What Grows Within pg. 42

Each of the yellow ribbons that spill from the joints of this jaundiced suit of +3 studded leather armor bears one or more haunting runes. Three times per day, a cleric (or other class with cleric domains) with the Rune domain can use her blast rune domain power to mark one of the ribbons rather than a square. Such blast runes last until the next time the cleric prepares spells and cannot benefit from other domain abilities such as spell rune. As a swift action while wearing this armor, the cleric can cause one of the ribbons to lash out and touch an adjacent creature, triggering the blast rune as if the target had entered the warded square. When marking a ribbon with a blast rune, the cleric can instead expend two daily uses of The Forbidden Name’s ability to also apply the benefits of another Rune domain (or subdomain) power such as spell rune or warding rune to the blast rune.

Alternatively, any wearer can expend two daily uses when casting glyph of warding or explosive runes—or three uses when casting greater glyph of warding—on a ribbon to treat it much like a blast rune. As a swift action while wearing the armor, she can trigger the glyph as though she had stepped on it; however, she takes half damage from the effect on a failed Reflex saving throw or no damage if successful.

Cost 10,175 gp
Craft Magical Arms and Armor, glyph of warding, secret page, creator must possess the Rune domain

It's a bit like a robe that offers you an extra contingency. Also makes the Cleric's Spell Rune domain power rather useful.

PF2E should be a new thread, I think, and probably not in the 3.X subforum.

Source Melee Tactics Toolbox pg. 15
You can throw on the most important element of your armor in a flash.

Prerequisites: Base attack bonus +1, medium armor proficiency.

Benefit: As a full-round action, you can shrug yourself into the largest and most protective section of a suit of armor with which you are proficient. The armor does not grant any magical benefits in this state, and its armor check penalty and maximum Dexterity bonus to AC are both 2 worse than normal. When donned using this feat, medium armor grants a +3 armor bonus, and heavy armor grants a +5 armor bonus. Light armor grants no armor bonus when donned using this feat.
You can tell a zealous editor got ahold of this feat and decided that equipping armor as a full-round action was overpowered (somehow) and went ahead "rebalancing" it before publication. The result is this ridiculous waste of space. Seriously, how does paizo manage to hire people this incompetent?

D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder / Re: [PF] Fable Tapestry Bard spell
« on: June 12, 2020, 03:27:50 PM »
Honestly I'm not sure you can pay for spell components with shadow conjurations. I think the tricks remaining here are to equip the conjurations with items that interact with their class to let them do things normally not within their abilities. I know you can boost the Cleric's healing even further with a Phylactery of Positive Channeling. You can also use Construct Channel Brick to heal constructs and objects (although mending cantrip spam is all you need for most objects). I'm sure there are items that let you do more.

D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder / Re: [PF] Fable Tapestry Bard spell
« on: June 04, 2020, 06:07:15 PM »
When it comes to offering magic items, the only thing that comes to my mind is the Bard's Music Beyond the Spheres masterpiece which lets you cast Wish at 17th level by destroying a 25k gp or more magic item, but that has to be a single item. Psychics can use any item that has sufficient emotional significance as a substitute for normal components, but I don't think fable tapestry items would qualify unless the psychic were to have a ridiculous fascination with the fables in question maybe (and even that seems suspect). I think there should be some magic spells that have you use gold coins as a special component too. You do get 900+ gp of shadow coins.

D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder / [PF] Fable Tapestry Bard spell
« on: June 04, 2020, 02:14:49 PM »
So there's a Bard only spell that lets you summon NPCs as if using Shadow Conjuration on a Summon Monster spell for some daft reason (with a 1 round casting time too):
Source Inner Sea Races pg. 219
School illusion (shadow) [shadow]; Level bard 5, skald 5 (Varisian)
Casting Time 1 round
Components V, S, F (your kapenia)
Range close (25 ft. + 5 ft./2 levels)
Effect 1 legendary character/4 caster levels
Duration 1 round/level
Saving Throw Will disbelief; Spell Resistance yes
The spell weaves shadows and colors from your kapenia into the shape of legendary characters from Varisian folktales. This spell functions as shadow conjuration emulating summon monster I, except as noted here. You can summon only one copy of the same character at the same time, even with multiple castings of this spell. The shadow creatures are 40% real and are drawn from the list below.

Anelda the beautiful (freelance thief)
NPC Codex 147
Old Mother Toad (fey giant toad)
Bestiary 3 116
Sonnorae the storyteller (con artist)
NPC Codex 29
Vyushbaro the savior (carousing champion)
NPC Codex 47
Winter’s Son (evasive slip)
NPC Codex 65
Zykomso the slaver (bearded devil)
Bestiary 73

So it's a bit of a question how to put this spell to use. Worth noting that the bard can immediately summon 3 of them in a single casting. Now, it's possible to add Solid Shadows and make it 60% real (add Crook of Cidhureen for another 50%) if you care, but the more interesting question is what to do with a spell that lets you summon a Cleric, Druid, Rogue, and Bard (also those monsters, but who cares). The most interesting aspect that stands out about this spell is the crazy amounts of healing your party can obtain just by summoning the Carousing Champion (who has 7 channel energy uses and can spontaneously convert all his non-domain spells into cures) and the Evasive Slip (who comes with a wand of cure moderate wounds that has 15 charges remaining). The NPCs come with all their magic items, which makes for a bit of an interesting question. When a summon monster spell expires and the creatures it has summoned disappears, all the spells that creature has cast end. But if you use spells from magic items that the summoned monster possesses? Then it's not exactly the summoned monster casting them. And one of the things that's possible here is summoning the Freelance Thief, Con Artist, and Evasive Slip and getting 4 potions of invisibility, and the Evasive Slip also comes with a wand of barkskin. They also come with gold and magic items. I know for sure that the Con Artist's Elixir of Truth will outlast the summon spell, seeing as it's not a spell effect (much like how supernatural abilities don't expire at summon's end), although the double will saves will make it horribly unreliable (unless you either use Beguiling Gift to make them voluntarily drink it or Mind Fog to destroy their will saving throws, but both of those spells are pretty rare picks for spells known).

Other stuff you can probably do involves items that interact with the classes in question. A Bard summon can be handed a Page of Spell Knowledge to cast whatever's on it after all (but you might prefer Summon Monster 6 for a 100% real Lillend Azata that casts as a 7th level Bard) or use its Lore Master ability to make knowledge checks for you (except you are a Bard yourself so you don't exactly need this), but I'm not sure about the rest.

This spell feels like it has some stunts in it (beyond just casting it to out-do Heal with a massive amount of healing spells and channels between the Evasive Slip and Carousing Champion alone), so I'm wondering how far you can push this spell to extract value out of it. It seems to be pretty shitty for combat, tbh, thanks to those shadow conjuration rules giving them garbage health. 

Alright, I've been looking at the Paladin class and just for kicks I've been wondering how feasible it is to make the Paladin also handle the party spellcaster role, considering it has so many options to expand its spell list and abilities. If anybody has any ideas on how best to achieve this, I'm all ears.

The following options for spellcasting expansion come to my mind: Patron deity spell list additions, oaths, the Unsanctioned Knowledge feat, and domain selection with Sacred Servant Paladin. One more thing worth noting is that you probably don't need a spell when you can just UMD a scroll or wand for it. That makes spells that are faster than a standard action or interact better with feats, metamagics, high DCs, and caster levels (use Magical Knack trait to fix CL) a bit more valuable. With regards to DCs I'm assuming the Paladin has a charisma score of at least 18 (Aasimar race works well for this) and a Lesser Metamagic Rod of Persistent Spell. A Cornugon Smash feat with the cruel weapon property also does a decent job of destroying an enemy's saving throws, but that's an investment into melee and you won't be casting in the same turn without a Lesser Metamagic Rod of Quicken Spell and/or a Spell Storing weapon property. Here's the list of spells I've got so far:

Abadar: Word of Recall (homecity temple only) 4
Erastil: Goodberry 2 / Animal Messenger 2 (may use any nonhostile animal, including friendly guard animals and domesticated animals)
Iomedae: Good Hope 3 / Mark of Justice 3
Kazutal: Blessing of Fervor 4 / Freedom of Movement 4 (Remember that Oath of Vengeance gives Blessing of Fervor 3)
Sarenrae: Flame Blade 2 / Sunbeam 4
Shelyn: Charm Person 1 / Charm Animal 2 / Good Hope 4
Shizuru: Searing Light 2 / Heroism 3 / Sunbeam 4
Torag: Ironbloom Sprouts 1 / Mending 1 / Fabricate 3 / Major Creation 3
Tsukiyo: Faerie Fire 1 / Calm Spirit 2 / Darkvision 2

Far as I can tell, Torag has by far the best spells, since Fabricate and Major Creation are great stuff. From a damage dealing perspective Iomedae's addition of Good Hope is pretty nice. Flame Blade is best for damage you do yourself. These spells are obtained rather effortlessly, since all you have to do is worship the deity in question and that's it. No archetype, feat, trait, or anything else required.

Oath against Fiends:  [Resist Energy 1 / Detect Thoughts 2 / Invisibility Purge 3 / Plane Shift 4] Now this is a solid list, all worth having. Worth noting Paladins already get Resist Energy as a 2nd level spell, but having it at 1st level is nice. And you can already use Litany of Seeing at 3rd level if you want. Detect Thoughts is rather handy (although the 2nd round int score condition may become a problem at higher levels) and Plane Shift at 4th level is great. The downside is this does not stack with Sacred Servant Paladin.
Oath of Vengeance: [Wrath 1 / Confess 2 / Blessing of Fervor 3 / Order's Wrath 4] Wrath might be useful if for some reason Divine Favor is not enough and you are not using better sources of morale bonuses. Confess is a waste when you already have Zone of Truth. And Order's Wrath is shit. Blessing of Fervor, however, is great to have as a Paladin. The real reason you typically want Oath of Vengeance is for massive amounts of Smite Evil uses, especially as a Sacred Servant Paladin.

Other oaths typically conflict with Oath of Vengeance, trade away Divine Grace, or do other things that are not worth having. Oath of Vengeance is more skippable if you have another source of large amounts of smite evil uses (typically a 2 level ninja dip for the ki pool and loads of Tea of Transference - alternatively a Perfect Style feat will give you a ki pool of 2).

Unsanctioned Knowledge
1 - Charm Person / Grease / Hideous Laughter / Obscuring Mist (this one should be a wand tbh) / Call Weapon / Dazzling Blade?
2 - Heroism (better as wand) / Blur / Invisibility / Glitterdust / Pyrotechnics / Silence / Gallant Inspiration / Bladed Dash (with lesser metamagic rod of quicken spell) / Mirror Image / Full Pouch
3 - Good Hope? / Confusion / Slow / Charm Monster / Invisibility Sphere / Displacement / Shadow Enchantment / Jester's Jaunt / Fear / Glyph of Warding
4 - Sonic Thrust / Shadow Conjuration / Dimension Door / Dance of a Hundred Cuts / Greater Invisibility / Hold Monster / Fear

These are the thoughts I've got so far. Generally speaking for 4th level spells, Sonic Thrust is the best since you can combine it with Quick Draw to draw something like 12 large greatswords and add Smite Evil to instantly kill an enemy, but if you take the Telekinetic Mastery feat you can use Telekinesis as a SLA anyway. Call Weapon is a naked melee attack and damage bonus (just target yourself, get +2 to attack and damage until end of round). Jester's Jaunt is more useful with a Spell Storing melee weapon, especially since you can hit yourself for 1 nonlethal to teleport as a free action. Dazzling Blade is mostly recommended for a 1st level spell as swift action to blind an enemy for 1 round. If you decide to use shadow spells, you should get a shadow stencil set for +1 to DCs and really use that metamagic rod of persistent spell.

Caves: [Magic Stone 1 / Create Pit 2 / Spiked Pit 3 / Spike Stones 4] More of a battlefield control pick. Tunnel Runner domain power can come in handy too. A decent pick if you have Torag.
Home: [Alarm 1 / Shield Other 2 / Glyph of Warding 3 / Imbue with Spell Ability 4] Mostly useful if you intend to take advantage of Glyph of Warding and Imbue with Spell Ability. Alarm and Shield Other are both spells you can cast daily, so Shield Other being on Paladin list is fine.
Knowledge: [Comprehend Languages 1 / Detect Thoughts 2 / Speak with Dead 3 / Divination 4] None of these are on the Paladin list. Only caveat is that Detect Thoughts can give you problems at high levels when int 26+ NPCs are near. Makes the Paladin into a master investigator. Also means Paladin gets all Knowledge skills as class skills.
Toil: [Command 1 / Wood Shape 2 / Stone Shape 3 / Minor Creation 4] A decent list of crafting spells to pull off a lot. Works well with Torag as your patron deity (giving you Fabricate and Major Creation)
Travel: [Longstrider 1 / Locate Object 2 / Fly 3 / Dimension Door 4] The domain powers are good. Longstrider and Dimension Door are both great spells. Fly is only good for higher speed and buffing others when you already have Angelic Aspect to give yourself a fly speed with minutes/level duration. Locate Object is too situational to have it every day, really.
Trickery (Erecura only, unless you have the Urban Acolyte faith trait and are worshiping Chaldira): [Disguise Self 1 / Invisibility 2 / Nondetection 3 / Confusion 4] No one really expects the Paladin to be a master of sneaking around, but now you can do it (shadow property on armor helps too - improved and greater variants exist also), and you even get Veil (with a terrible DC) as a domain power.
Smoke (Angradd/Svarozic deities only): [Burning Hands 1 / Pyrotechnics 2 / Stinking Cloud 3 / Wall of Fire 4] Adds an instant smattering of battlefield control options. Wall of Fire and Burning Hands both kind of suck though, being damage dealing spells that do bad damage, unless you're using metamagic rods to add riders (like Dazing Spell, Cherry Blossom Spell, Blissful Spell, or Authoritative Spell).

Worth noting that Icon of Aspects lets you swap the domain powers of one of your domains with the domain powers from any other domain you choose that your deity provides, with the change being initiated while preparing spells and lasting for 24 hours. It's not PFS legal though, and it's a Cleric-specific item, but a UMD check will let your Sacred Servant Paladin count as a Cleric anyway. This makes Sacred Servant Paladins much better since you can combine the spells of one domain with the granted powers of another. That means that Hubris subdomain (available to Iomedae) can be obtained with any domain spell list, for instance. Rage subdomain can also be obtained (Ragathiel would be a fitting deity) if you want to add the Barbarian's Rage to your Paladin. Kobold Faith race trait (which can be obtained as a non-Kobold through the Adopted social trait), Urban Acolyte faith trait, and Acolyte of Apocrypha faith trait also allow you to expand the list of subdomains available to your deity.

Still a bit uncertain on what other domains, and spells are good to have. Any thoughts? What do you think are the best spells and domains for a Paladin to add to his list? I think part of the question we need to ask is what kind of proficiencies the Paladin is missing and how to cover that in order to make the Paladin a more useful party member. Another thing worth noting is the ability to UMD scrolls and wands. A wand of Calcific Touch for instance can be paired with things like Divine Favor and Smite Evil to allow the Paladin to hit for massive amounts of dexterity damage as a melee touch attack.           

Handbook Discussion / Re: [PF] Class imitating guide discussion
« on: June 01, 2020, 06:13:23 AM »
A few updates were made to the guide. Alchemist updated, Paladin updated, Rogue updated, Cleric, Witch, and Wizard entries added.

D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder / Re: [PF] Perilous Puzzle Box item
« on: May 30, 2020, 09:38:23 AM »
Hm, may as well post up a list of solid buffs and utility spells that are usable with Puzzle Box:
If you have the opportunity, combat buffs can be applied right before initiating combat. Looking at it like this, Perilous Puzzle Boxes are some pretty solid utility items for unused spells at the end of a day, considering how cheap they are for the spell storing effect.

For hostile effects, Plane Shift, Bestow Curse (Major variant as Mesmerist is best), Aboleth's Lung, and Green Caress come to mind.

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