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Pathfinder Wrath of the Righteous, Part 4


Vaeliorin

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33 minutes ago, InsaneCommander said:

I've been avoiding the DLC areas because I don't know if I'll get stuck for a while. But I read somewhere that you can make a lot of money in the Islands DLC. So I'll head there soon. Currently I want to visit "The Bloody Trail", "Burial Ground", "Blackwater Clan" and "Legacy of the Ancients". There are also some areas to visit near this last one. Ivory Sanctum I'm leaving for later since I ended up reading somewhere that it triggers the end of the act or something. I imagine I could still play and explore, but I'll avoid it just in case.

I’m gonna bring the Shock bow and memorize the right spells before going to Balckwater. This is another of those situations when you can’t prepare in advance when playing for the first time, like @xzar_montysaid.

Btw, I have a folder in my computer full of screenshots of this thread with all the tips you guys give. Thanks.

at the risk o' failing the dreaded double-post faux pas, am gonna observe how after @Gorthmentioned his travails, we went back and played a considerable portion o' blackwater with a level 13 party on hard difficulty as well as core. maybe difficult to believe, but blackwater foes has been nerfed since the initial release. you may probable imagine how furious were fans with the imposi-hard blackwater at release. even so, on core, the sr and ac for blackwater foes is current a significant increase compared to any other similar placed act iii content. virtual every door opened in blackwater results in the equivalent o' a quasi boss encounter.  

one BIG suggestion we forgot to add earlier were the spamming glitterdust. the conjuration spell is second level, ignores sr and requires a will save. results in the blinded debuff on a failed save. blackwater foes have terrible will saves and blinded diminishes ac by 2, reveals the frequent invisible foes and robs enemies o' their dex bonus to ac. can be a huge difference maker for a cheap spell which may be heightened.

keep in mind other lower level conjuration and druid transmutation spells which ignore sr such as web and entangle. such spells is best if modified with the selective metamagic feat, but even w/o select, if you are careful you should be able to make use o' those sorta spells. 

nenio's phantasmal web will be impacted by sr, but she should be able to overcome most sr with gear and both o' the spell penetration feats. is another fantastic crowd control spell.

regardless, do not overlook glitterdust.

...

and one other consideration: you do not need to fight the demons in the circular lava room in the circular lava room. what we mean is that you may lure 'em back through the doors you spent so much effort opening. fight 'em at a doorway is often a decent alternative.

HA! Good Fun!

ps am not certain how you built your court poet, but azata bards is extreme viable as enchantment casters. best jokes power combined with the azata spells which boost mind effects dc and the gear we mentioned earlier is another way to virtual sleepwalk your way through blackwater.

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"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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Huff... puff... 😓

So far so good... 3 annoying demons and their 2 succubus handmaidens down (as were 2 of my own party members). Since this is the middle of the map, I have a suspicion of more fights and more camp sites for resting are needed before I get out 😝

x1JwyUl.jpg

 

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“He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would surely suffice.” - Albert Einstein
 

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9 hours ago, Gorth said:

Huff... puff... 😓

So far so good... 3 annoying demons and their 2 succubus handmaidens down (as were 2 of my own party members). Since this is the middle of the map, I have a suspicion of more fights and more camp sites for resting are needed before I get out 😝

 

looks brutal but at least you survived, and you didn't even use guarded hearth.

is not much am able to divine from the screenie, but am recognizing deadly aim for arue as well as power attack for seelah is active. those modes may be toggled off if you so desire, and given attack penalties involved, if you are already experiencing difficulty hitting foes, you might consider disabling deadly aim, rapid shot, power attack and the like at least until you discover a combination of buffs and debuffs which allows you to proceed.

if you open spellbooks for your casters you may see what is the difficulty class for each spell as well as the spell penetration for each level o' spells. those numbers is vital important for casters who is doing anything other than party buffs. spell resistance is an initial line o' defense, so even if your enemy has a literal negative will saving throw, if you cannot beat her spell resistance, your spell will be ineffective... unless it is a spell which ignores spell resistance. dc determines how high the number foes need roll to make a successful saving throw. 

spell resist check = 1d20 + caster level + spell penetration 

dc of a spell = 10 + spell level + ability modifier

is ways to boost spell penetration, but unless you already know the methods to improve spell pen, wotr will punish your ignorance 'cause it does a sh!te job o' teaching. is items which aid in overcoming sr and well nigh essential feats which also improve spell penetration. 

dc is particular tough to boost w/o involved pathfinder/wotr knowledge. the most obvious way to buff dc o' spells is to increase the modifier o' your character's main casting attribute. sosiel, for example, relies on wisdom to generate dc. more wisdom (but only at even numbers *eye roll*) results in better dc values for spells cast. but how to increase an attribute such as wisdom is not so straightforward.

is spells and items which enhance your attributes and the stacking rules for wotr makes it frustrating to figure out why two pieces o' gear or different alloy o' spells effective boost an attribute while other combinations fail.  bloodlines for sorcerer, such as fey, often provide dc boosts. there is a feat which provides a dc boost for elves casting enchantment school spells. is a few classes and archetypes with features (overwhelming mage's overwhelming spell, arcanist potent magic, etc.) azata, in particular, has multiple mythic spells which boost both attributes and dc direct. aeons have a gaze which increases spell dc o' all party members. a court poet is able to buff party member intelligence and charisma scores with a bonus which will stack with almost every item linked attribute enhancement. etc.

spell focus feats is functional essential for increasing spell dcs o' a caster, but that means that chances are you is only gonna have impressive spell dcs for one or two schools worth o' spells. we got a 19/1 cleric/crossblood sorcerer build which for sosiel and we choose evocation as his school for focusing  and boosting dc's, but is not the right way to build sosiel as is other schools which make just as much sense for sosiel 'course if you use sosiel for his rather impressive late game combat prowess, domain powers and party buffs, then spell dc boosts is kinda immaterial. 

...

pathfinder is not intuitive and a few areas and boss battles is scaled poor... scaled not poor on unfair for players who know all exploits, but scaled poor for core and normal where folks who may not benefit from extensive pathfinder and wotr is likely to be playing the game. worse, folks who don't have intimate pathfinder knowledge is gonna be at a loss to ask the right questions, 'cause to the pathfinder novice, viewing the combat logs is providing few useful insights.

is a couple areas in blackwater with combat challenges at least as difficult as what you just dealt with, so...

let us know what you did which does and doesn't seem to be working and chances are we will make many not helpful observations... but maybe we get lucky. wouldn't be the first time we blundered our way into offering useful advice. 

HA! Good Fun!

Edited by Gromnir

"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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So some datamining has been proven false, notably the Devil stuff, but it looks like some Shifter stuff is showing up. I'm willing to bet that one of the next dlcs includes it like Kineticist was in the Kingmaker dlc.

Notable is an owlcat homebrew archetype, Child of Manticore.

"Manticores breeding with many lion-like creatures and shifters in lion forms are no exception. Perhaps you are someone's vile experiment, or the circumstances have developed that your shifting abilities become twisted by manticore's blood."

 

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"Akiva Goldsman and Alex Kurtzman run the 21st century version of MK ULTRA." - majestic

"I'm gonna hunt you down so that I can slap you square in the mouth." - Bartimaeus

"Without individual thinking you can't notice the plot holes." - InsaneCommander

"Just feed off the suffering of gamers." - Malcador

"You are calling my taste crap." -Hurlshort

"thankfully it seems like the creators like Hungary less this time around." - Sarex

"Don't forget the wakame, dumbass" -Keyrock

"Are you trolling or just being inadvertently nonsensical?' -Pidesco

"we have already been forced to admit you are at least human" - uuuhhii

"I refuse to buy from non-woke businesses" - HoonDing

"feral camels are now considered a pest" - Gorth

"Melkathi is known to be an overly critical grumpy person" - Melkathi

"Oddly enough Sanderson was a lot more direct despite being a Mormon" - Zoraptor

"I found it greatly disturbing to scroll through my cartoon's halfing selection of genitalias." - Wormerine

"Am I phrasing in the most negative light for them? Yes, but it's not untrue." - ShadySands

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59 minutes ago, KP From Another World said:

"Manticores breeding with many lion-like creatures and shifters in lion forms are no exception. Perhaps you are someone's vile experiment, or the circumstances have developed that your shifting abilities become twisted by manticore's blood."

Uncle-From-Another-World-ep-6-screenshot

 

I tried the EE and it didn't go well. The dialogue with Ember and the crowd listening to her was triggered again. Then I went to the Azata court and the transformation scene happened again, despite the place having not reverted to the Worldwound state. Also, Aivu asked me to give the place a name. TWICE in a row.

I'm back to the other version. I visited the Dragon Burial ground and it was a dead end for now. Found some good money though.

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@Gromnir yeah, I forgot to turn off power attack on Seelah for sure. Did remember to disable rapid shot though. Seelah (or rather her poor horse) and Camellia in particular had the task of being part damage sponges and part dealing with the two succubuses (is that succumbi in plural?). Also to help keep up the coordinated manoeuvres I suppose (and Seelah had a banner giving bonus to attack rolls) and Camellia tried to help a bit with the spell casting while she lasted. Alas call lightning storm had no chance of overcoming reflex saves (did cause a bit of damage, but generally underwhelming). My barbarian, Aru and Ember doing most of the damage dealing (gave Ember a few metamagic feats, elemental affinity (to overcome resistance) for fire and electricity, normal and mythic spell penetrations and focus on evocation and enchantment (based on memory, may have gotten the odd detail wrong from what I intended to what I did). Also a few scrolls of sirocco in her belt. I still keep forgetting things like disabling power attack after a rest though 😳

The screenshot is just my victorious barbarian gloating over the corpses of dead enemies ✌️

I had already used cackling glee by this point though

 

Edit: Generally trying to wean myself off making generalists and focus on if possible, one thing that each character should be good at (without sacrificing their entire background). I.e main character doing melee damage, Ember doing fire (and temporarily electricity based) spells, Aru I'm trying to make as deadly as possible with a longbow etc. and pick the feats consistently for that. Spare feats going into the teamwork feats (as opposed to my army of jacks of all trades that I started out with).

Edit2: I also cheesed dimension door a bit, because enemies always seems to focus on Ember (to the point of suicidal idiocy) once Camellia and Seelah's horse are down... leading them on a merry chase for a while so Sosiel can heal and buff the team a bit. It's nice she can bring friends too when teleporting around 😁

Edit3: Women! Sometimes I really don't understand them... 😖

Arueshalae has unilaterally decided she belongs in jail and refuses to leave her cell?!?

“He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would surely suffice.” - Albert Einstein
 

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Well afaik none of the mods I'm running break the game with 2.0whatever. Breddy Gud.

1 hour ago, InsaneCommander said:

Uncle-From-Another-World-ep-6-screenshot

 

I tried the EE and it didn't go well. The dialogue with Ember and the crowd listening to her was triggered again. Then I went to the Azata court and the transformation scene happened again, despite the place having not reverted to the Worldwound state. Also, Aivu asked me to give the place a name. TWICE in a row.

I'm back to the other version. I visited the Dragon Burial ground and it was a dead end for now. Found some good money though.

Thankfully I have no in progress games going.

1 hour ago, Gorth said:

@Gromnir yeah, I forgot to turn off power attack on Seelah for sure. Did remember to disable rapid shot though. Seelah (or rather her poor horse) and Camellia in particular had the task of being part damage sponges and part dealing with the two succubuses (is that succumbi in plural?). Also to help keep up the coordinated manoeuvres I suppose (and Seelah had a banner giving bonus to attack rolls) and Camellia tried to help a bit with the spell casting while she lasted. Alas call lightning storm had no chance of overcoming reflex saves (did cause a bit of damage, but generally underwhelming). My barbarian, Aru and Ember doing most of the damage dealing (gave Ember a few metamagic feats, elemental affinity (to overcome resistance) for fire and electricity, normal and mythic spell penetrations and focus on evocation and enchantment (based on memory, may have gotten the odd detail wrong from what I intended to what I did). Also a few scrolls of sirocco in her belt. I still keep forgetting things like disabling power attack after a rest though 😳

The screenshot is just my victorious barbarian gloating over the corpses of dead enemies ✌️

I had already used cackling glee by this point though

 

Edit: Generally trying to wean myself off making generalists and focus on if possible, one thing that each character should be good at (without sacrificing their entire background). I.e main character doing melee damage, Ember doing fire (and temporarily electricity based) spells, Aru I'm trying to make as deadly as possible with a longbow etc. and pick the feats consistently for that. Spare feats going into the teamwork feats (as opposed to my army of jacks of all trades that I started out with).

Edit2: I also cheesed dimension door a bit, because enemies always seems to focus on Ember (to the point of suicidal idiocy) once Camellia and Seelah's horse are down... leading them on a merry chase for a while so Sosiel can heal and buff the team a bit. It's nice she can bring friends too when teleporting around 😁

Edit3: Women! Sometimes I really don't understand them... 😖

Arueshalae has unilaterally decided she belongs in jail and refuses to leave her cell?!?

Stop being naughty and edit like the rest of us.

"Akiva Goldsman and Alex Kurtzman run the 21st century version of MK ULTRA." - majestic

"I'm gonna hunt you down so that I can slap you square in the mouth." - Bartimaeus

"Without individual thinking you can't notice the plot holes." - InsaneCommander

"Just feed off the suffering of gamers." - Malcador

"You are calling my taste crap." -Hurlshort

"thankfully it seems like the creators like Hungary less this time around." - Sarex

"Don't forget the wakame, dumbass" -Keyrock

"Are you trolling or just being inadvertently nonsensical?' -Pidesco

"we have already been forced to admit you are at least human" - uuuhhii

"I refuse to buy from non-woke businesses" - HoonDing

"feral camels are now considered a pest" - Gorth

"Melkathi is known to be an overly critical grumpy person" - Melkathi

"Oddly enough Sanderson was a lot more direct despite being a Mormon" - Zoraptor

"I found it greatly disturbing to scroll through my cartoon's halfing selection of genitalias." - Wormerine

"Am I phrasing in the most negative light for them? Yes, but it's not untrue." - ShadySands

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I could do worse... like quoting my own posts with amendments 😝

Forgot to mention Arueshalaes rangers bond is a very nice addition, adding a bit of bonus to some fights too. I forgot to check first of these particular demons were demons of magic (her favoured enemy), so I have no idea if it contributed to anything or not.

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“He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would surely suffice.” - Albert Einstein
 

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26 minutes ago, Gorth said:

I could do worse... like quoting my own posts with amendments 😝

Now that's naughty.

Looking at full arcane spell casters and trying to decide if I want to do a Witch (Ley Line Guardian) or Arcanist (not unlettered or nature mage). Both seem interesting and with quick study arcanist gets a much needed boost from the vanilla game that lets it keep up with Wizards and Sorcerers. I know how powerful hexes can be and that Brown Fur is a mvp when it comes to party buffing. Too many options in this damn game triggering my rerollitis.

Edit: Lmao, the Ley Line Guardian spellbook isn't labeled.

Edited by KP From Another World
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"Akiva Goldsman and Alex Kurtzman run the 21st century version of MK ULTRA." - majestic

"I'm gonna hunt you down so that I can slap you square in the mouth." - Bartimaeus

"Without individual thinking you can't notice the plot holes." - InsaneCommander

"Just feed off the suffering of gamers." - Malcador

"You are calling my taste crap." -Hurlshort

"thankfully it seems like the creators like Hungary less this time around." - Sarex

"Don't forget the wakame, dumbass" -Keyrock

"Are you trolling or just being inadvertently nonsensical?' -Pidesco

"we have already been forced to admit you are at least human" - uuuhhii

"I refuse to buy from non-woke businesses" - HoonDing

"feral camels are now considered a pest" - Gorth

"Melkathi is known to be an overly critical grumpy person" - Melkathi

"Oddly enough Sanderson was a lot more direct despite being a Mormon" - Zoraptor

"I found it greatly disturbing to scroll through my cartoon's halfing selection of genitalias." - Wormerine

"Am I phrasing in the most negative light for them? Yes, but it's not untrue." - ShadySands

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4 hours ago, Gorth said:

I could do worse... like quoting my own posts with amendments 😝

Forgot to mention Arueshalaes rangers bond is a very nice addition, adding a bit of bonus to some fights too. I forgot to check first of these particular demons were demons of magic (her favoured enemy), so I have no idea if it contributed to anything or not.

hmmm.

arue chooses an additional "favoured" enemy every fifth level, which is why her two favoured enemies at level 9 is demons of magic (vrock, succubi, nabbasu, lilitu, as well as the wotr ultimate bad guy and others,) and humans.  am having no idea what were your level 10 choice, but demons o' strength is what we would choose, and then at level 15 we would add demons o' slaughter. level 20 doesn't much matter, but at every fifth level you gotta decide which previous favoured enemy you wanna designate as deserving an additional +2 fave enemy bonus... and you should always choose to focus on demons o' magic 'cause o' the spell we mentioned earlier (instant enemy) which applies your highest fave enemy bonus to any target. by level 20 arue should have +10 against demons of magic, but she will also have four additional (less) favoured enemies each o' which is subject to +2 bonuses. regardless, the instant enemy spell means arue will have +10 v. __________. 

(edit: video added) 

this guy is a h007. the thing is, he had a few fantastic pillars of eternity observations which were quite perceptive. many o' his wotr builds don't appeal to us and more than a few o' his wotr suggestions has been invalidated by updates (for instance, mythic weapon finesse no longer applies to ranged weapons and loremaster no longer provides trickster mythic feats.) am posting nevertheless 'cause nerd commando does a fair job o' explaining the usefulness o' rangers bond as well as the opness o' the instant enemy spell.

as an aside, specialization is virtual required in pathfinder and legacy d&d games. is a few ways to make viable jack of all trades builds, but as often as not you end up with a character mediocre at everything, and given wotr bloat for boss battles, mediocre is rare the right choice.

HA! Good Fun!

Edited by Gromnir
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"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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To be honest and with all respects to the video (Vital Strike was taken down a bunch of nods over the course of patching too) I don't think Aru needs more than 15 levels of Ranger. Yes, another favored enemy would be nice to have, and increasing Demons of Magic to +10 is a fine bonus too, but if you give Aru 5 levels of Bard and you have no other bard in the group, that'll be +2 for everyone and against everything. Depends on your party setup, of course. The other option is making use of Fighter Bonus feats, between the Mutagen gained from Mutation Warrior and Fighter Training, you're not losing out on anything, really. Except Ranger spells. Not much of loss, right? The only thing one needs is Instant Enemy anyway, and that's a level three spell (just take Abundant Casting). :)

Either way beats a full Ranger build.

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No mind to think. No will to break. No voice to cry suffering.

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I just gave her another fighter level, so she's now the original ranger branch (something with espionage?) level 10 (favoured enemies being demons of might and magic). 4 levels of mutagen warrior. Mostly for the dex mutagen (at fighter level 3) and the bonus feats. It may not "win" any min/maxing prizes, but it works. For now at least 😎

Seelah still gives me a headache. She can cast some spells and she has good mobility on her horse. But she's yet to hit anything other than the proverbial training rats in a dungeon and she tends to get her horse killed underneath her (despite sharing towershield ac bonuses with her mount). She buffs and blesses while it lasts, but she ends up inevitably slugging along on foot. Maybe I should just keep the horse and dismiss Seelah? 🤔

I think in my next outing, I'll replace her with Greybor and see how that works for a while. I know he's slow, but at least it won't surprise me if he's the last to arrive at a fight. He does seem to dish out pain as well as he receives it.

So many things to try out and test... but then, it took me years before I had had my fill of trying out all things BG2 (which was probably the last time I spent this kind of time on a single player game)

“He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would surely suffice.” - Albert Einstein
 

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6 hours ago, majestic said:

To be honest and with all respects to the video (Vital Strike was taken down a bunch of nods over the course of patching too) I don't think Aru needs more than 15 levels of Ranger. Yes, another favored enemy would be nice to have, and increasing Demons of Magic to +10 is a fine bonus too, but if you give Aru 5 levels of Bard and you have no other bard in the group, that'll be +2 for everyone and against everything. Depends on your party setup, of course. The other option is making use of Fighter Bonus feats, between the Mutagen gained from Mutation Warrior and Fighter Training, you're not losing out on anything, really. Except Ranger spells. Not much of loss, right? The only thing one needs is Instant Enemy anyway, and that's a level three spell (just take Abundant Casting). :)

Either way beats a full Ranger build.

agree on vital strike, but again, we posted for favoured enemies and instant enemy. keep in mind, five levels of bard gets you a suspect +1 benefit compared to the ranger bond + instant enemy bonus, and the bard's boost is a competence bonus which won't stack with everything. the bard levels result in the cost o' a -2 ab loss for aru as well as diminished casts of instant enemy. the way instant enemy and ranger's bond works is you transmit half your favoured enemy bonus to all party mates. so by going from 15 to 20 with ranger, you increase aru's ranger's bond  party bonus from +4 to +5.  

edit: oh, and improved quarry for aru at 19 is tough to overlook. quarry becomes a free action at level 19, which is huge. the additional +2 for improved quarry is swell, but again, the free action aspect is what makes it difficult to sacrifice. with improved quarry, aru is enjoying an additional +2 v. all enemies via a free action, so that move to bard is resulting in what amounts to another -2 penalty to attack bonus. switch to mutagen gets you little 'cause the +2 resulting from mutagen is a wash compared to improved quarry but you will lose the final party buff from ranger's bond, additional casts o' instant enemy and while is a minor thing given how cheap is the bless weapon spell, aru's crits are always confirmed via improved quarry. however, the negative for quarry is it is insight v. alchemical. 

@Gorth

(edit) your seelah observations is almost alien to us. horses may be buffed to have impressive ac even w/o shield bonuses. do not ignore spells such as shield of faith, magic vestment (if you use barding as the bug allowing use on naked critters and characters were nerfed,) barkskin and mage armour until you get better than +4 bracers. animal growth provides a size bonus to strength but it also boosts natural ac by +2. is also worth considering the mythic beast mythic ability.

seelah is a paladin, a full bab class which also has holy smite, mark of justice and eventual access to the eagle soul spell.  am ordinarily equipping her sword and board but am not gonna deny that if you want the most offensive damage benefit from her you likely equip her with a two-handed weapon. *shrug* have only once gone the 2-h route and am not over concerned by the reduced damage output. there is a particular fantastic heavy shield available at the end o' act iv which we kinda want equipped on somebody and seelah is the obvious choice. more meta nonsense, eh? regardless, our seelah is never our best damage dealer, but she hits reliably which is why we feel good about giving her the leading strike mythic ability.

am recalling you took reckless stance and inspire ferocity, which is good choices, but they do result in an ac penalty, so turn off the acceptance o' rage for at least the horse or other party tanks.

HA! Good Fun!

ps am suspicious o' the need for improved abundant casting but am getting the rationale from nerd. you definite wanna take heighten metamagic to fill aru's level 4 slots with instant enemy and abundant casting is only gonna double your casts o' up to level 3 spells. you wanna double level 4 casts o' heightened instant enemy? well then, you need improved abundant. kinda depends on your party and needs. we typical don't need aru's ranger bond bonuses for trash mobs. is boss battles and the few more difficult fights which matter. doubling level 3 slots is good enough, but the thing is, there ain't too many other mythic abilities we need for aru anyway. sure, she benefits much from mythic feats, but cleave and distracting are the must-have powers for aru and after that it is kinda a fight 'tween expose vulnerability, ranging shots, the bigger they are and the aforementioned casting abilities. 

Edited by Gromnir
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"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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7 hours ago, Gorth said:

I just gave her another fighter level, so she's now the original ranger branch (something with espionage?) level 10 (favoured enemies being demons of might and magic). 4 levels of mutagen warrior. Mostly for the dex mutagen (at fighter level 3) and the bonus feats. It may not "win" any min/maxing prizes, but it works. For now at least 😎

No more than five for Weapon Training, then you're good. The rest goes into Ranger for the bond, the additional spell slots and even more bow related combat feats.

7 hours ago, Gorth said:

Seelah still gives me a headache. She can cast some spells and she has good mobility on her horse. But she's yet to hit anything other than the proverbial training rats in a dungeon and she tends to get her horse killed underneath her (despite sharing towershield ac bonuses with her mount). She buffs and blesses while it lasts, but she ends up inevitably slugging along on foot. Maybe I should just keep the horse and dismiss Seelah? 🤔

To make something worthwhile of Seelah, you either have to ignore that she's supposed to be a paladin and make yourself a mercenary Paladin (arguably not necessary on Normal) or go deep into weird build territory.

The primary build that ignores her as a Paladin is making use of the tried and true CHA to AC stacking, i.e. you give her a level of Scaled Fist monk, a level of Oracle with Hellbound curse (as that does nothing negative at all for her), Nature as Mystery and Nature's Whispers, then add Archmage Armor as a mythic ability and use her as a Court Poet - but that only makes sense if you run a party that benefits from Insightful Contemplation (a bard song giving you bonus CHA and INT, as well as saves). 16 levels as Court Poet gives you one more level to play with for whatever benefits you like.

That gives you a nice bonus to your defensive and spellcasting stats (well, not your party, but more in general), and if you spend the feats on her she can use Crippling Kiss, an Estoc found in Greengates to debuff enemies whenever she crits. You're not going to get a whole lot of damage out of her, but that's not what you lug her around for. She sings and casts buffs and uses Mirror Image and Mage Armor potions to survive.

You can, with some, ah, well, let's say, some inelegance do the same build with another Skald archetype, like a Scion or a Herald, or just base Skald. That has the advantage of giving your melee characters additional attacks through the Beast Totem rage powers line (or whatever else you like, but usually it's the Beast Totem powers for additional attacks and that godly pounce given by Greater Beast Totem), but you need to make sure that you don't brick your backline's spellcasting - or anything that is a spell like ability and requires conentration to use. You can turn Inspire Rage off for your characters, just in case you ever wondered what that ability that's something about accepting rage in your abilities tab is for.

A full Skald at level 20 has the benefit of being able to give out Rage Powers without that problem. The deal is, that, well, with your party setup, you'd not get much out of it. If you ever find yourself with lots of animal companions and melee characters, then by all means go for it. 

Now for Seelah's cheeseball build that still lets her be a Paladin. First, give her one level of Sohei and pick a horse. Then 11 levels of Paladin so she gets Mark of Justice, pick Boon Companion up along the way. Pick Long Spear as weapons for Focus, Improved Criticals, etc. because you'll eventually come across the Fabled Hero's Lance. Stuff your bonus stats into CHA, give her a +6 CHA item anything else you can find to buff her CHA. If you don't hit anything with her on normal, you're not using Smite Evil (Smite Evil gives her CHA bonus to attack and her paladin levels to damage rolls). Take Abundant Smite. Mark of Justice is a Smite Evil that works for the entire party. The primary reason pretty much any run in any higher difficulty in this game all but requires a Paladin character with at least (but usually exactly) 11 levels of Paladin. Use the ring that gives you an extra Smite Evil (hopefully you found it).

Then... give her a level of Hellknight. No, really, she's not going to complain about having a level in Hellknight, and she'll still complain your ear off about them, but hey, whatever Seelah. Take Abundant Smite Chaos. The two smites stack, and most difficult enemies in the game are chaotic evil anyway.

You're now at level 13, proceed to add another five Sohei levels for the funny Weapon Training -> Flury of Blows cheese @KP From Another World mentioned a few pages back, which means taking Weapon Training: Spears. Make sure she and her horse have the Outflank and Back to Back* feats. Mythical Beast and Mythic Charge as mythic abilities are useful. Mount with a Tower Shield equipped for the Mounted Shield bonus AC, then switch to the long spear you want to use.

Smite your target, click on the charge ability and watch the chunks fly around.

You still have two levels to play around with. There's a bunch of level one investments that are worth a whole lot, a Demonslayer level will provide favored enemy bonuses against the most common enemies in the game, a level of Bloodrider isn't going to break your pet progression and gives you rage (could even pick Limitless Rage as mythic ability) and to top it off the Celestial bloodline auto-good-aligns your weapon and gives a d6 bonus damage against demons - but whatever you want, really.

Edit: Since I forgot, if you enlarge both Seelah and her horse in equal measures, she can still ride it. Do that. No point in not doing it, really. It's the primary reason she has a horse and not something like a wolf. :)

Edit2: Testing says that something's not entirely right with Boon Companion at the moment. As such, use Paladin 12 for an extra Mercy and leave out the Demonslayer level.

*If you don't know, enemies are flanked the moment two of your party members are engaging them in melee, no matter where they're standing. Outflank is active when she's attacking from her horse. No, it doesn't need to make sense, but it is what it is. That should also explain why Back to Back is a better choice than it might seem. :p

7 hours ago, Gorth said:

I think in my next outing, I'll replace her with Greybor and see how that works for a while. I know he's slow, but at least it won't surprise me if he's the last to arrive at a fight. He does seem to dish out pain as well as he receives it.

Grey-bore is about as useless as he's boring. I guess you could slap four levels of Freebooter on him for that Freebooter's Bond (no worries, it does stack with Ranger's Bond) and try to make him more than a wet noodle in melee by giving him shield bash and use his dual wielding with an axe and a shield (courtesy of the Freebooter's combat style feats), but still... not only will he be late to the party melee, he'll also be dead really quickly. It's a problem Greybor shares with an awful lot of melee companions that are basically not really salvagable. The worst of which has to be a character you're probably not going to be able to pick up because it requires very specific interactions with one of your companions.

Spoiler

Sosiel's brother Trever. Owlcat wins the prize for the worst companion in cRPG history with that one.

Anyway. Make sure he takes Opportunist. Fill the remaining levels with something that adds some utility and continues his sneak attack die. It's really a bit whatever, sadly.

5 hours ago, Gromnir said:

agree on vital strike, but again, we posted for favoured enemies and instant enemy. keep in mind, five levels of bard gets you a suspect +1 benefit compared to the ranger bond + instant enemy bonus, and the bard's boost is a competence bonus which won't stack with everything. the bard levels result in the cost o' a -2 ab loss for aru as well as diminished casts of instant enemy. the way instant enemy and ranger's bond works is you transmit half your favoured enemy bonus to all party mates. so by going from 15 to 20 with ranger, you increase aru's ranger's bond  party bonus from +4 to +5.  

The Bard level combat trick should make it possible for her to grab Shattered Defenses at very little opportunity cost to the build, which the other two paths can't really do unless you got out of your way to sacrifice feats for it that could be spent on something else. What she's doing in combat is basically casting Instant Enemy, Ranger's Bond and sing, and that's pretty much it. Depending on what you do with your party it's better than pushing Ranger's Bond to +5, and I don't think we need to argue that her personal combat abilities end up being much better with five levels of Mutation Warrior than with another five levels of Ranger. :)

The question in the end is whether or not a +1 for the entire party is worth it over the Mutagen and extra Feats. Since we're talking about being at level 20, I'm not really sure about that... but anyway, it's not much of a toss up either way.

Edited by majestic
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am so not seeing the upside to bard. again, the party bonuses from an aru with 5 bard levels results in +6 total for the party, and +2 is gonna be competence which is likely not to stack with other common competence bonuses. aru as a vanilla ranger provides +5 to the entire party through bond and she don't need suffer the bard level cost o' -2 personal ab due to bard levels. going bard also means the loss o' improved quarry, arguably one o' her best possible abilities, not to mention forgoing the personal benefits o' the final favoured enemy tier-- +8 v. +10 which 'cause o' instant enemy is applied to any foe.

41 minutes ago, majestic said:

I don't think we need to argue that her personal combat abilities end up being much better with five levels of Mutation Warrior than with another five levels of Ranger. :)

kinda already did. the levels of mutation result in missing out on improved quarry, so the +4 alchemical boost to dex  results in a net gain o' zero to ab plus the loss o' your final favored enemy, which 'cause o' favoured enemy + instant enemy results in another +2 attack bonus sacrifice. by taking mutation warrior levels, you do effective get a bonus you cannot match with favoured enemy +instant enemy... but functionally your ab is only better for two rounds as you are gimping your favoured enemy + instant enemy benefits while sacrificing casts o' instant enemy not to mention making it impossible to get improved quarry, which is one o' arue's best abilities.

all too often the level dips don't provide the upside one imagines.

HA! Good Fun!

ps (edit) 

our 2021 suggestion for seelah were 11/8/1 paladin, court poet, demonslayer, and am thinking such works better than sohei as o' at least the past few months once boon companion were adjusted closer to pnp. one level o' sohei and eleven levels o' paladin with boon companion woulda' resulted in a level twelve horse.

23630868.jpg

pretty much gotta skip the animal companion if you are building new and not getting advantages o' old and busted builds... at least until the next time owlcat messes with animal companions. is genuine tough to discern what is s'posed to be animal companion levels in wotr 'cause is definite not pnp, but am not certain what owlcat were aiming for neither.

 

Edited by Gromnir
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@majesticI was thinking of Sohei flurry cheese on hit ranged attacks from a horse, but now that you mentioned it like that I have to wonder just how much damage you can get with a charge pounce flurry. With that lance, mythic charge, and the lich ability that's adding 28 dice to 6 or 7 attacks. Maybe I'll have to make a death knight after all.

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57 minutes ago, KP From Another World said:

@majesticI was thinking of Sohei flurry cheese on hit ranged attacks from a horse, but now that you mentioned it like that I have to wonder just how much damage you can get with a charge pounce flurry. With that lance, mythic charge, and the lich ability that's adding 28 dice to 6 or 7 attacks. Maybe I'll have to make a death knight after all.

am knowing you don't see the upside to fauchard, and is gonna work almost as well with a bardiche, but a fauchard wielding 11/9 sohei/demonslayer with a skald merc in party is getting ridiculous # of attacks, does massive spirited charge damage (particular as a demon) and generates silly attacks of opportunity while benefiting from party generated attacks of opportunity thanks to seize the moment and a high crit range reach weapon. is largely how our legend is designed... although we got an additional sixteen levels of vivisectionist, 'cause why not? am also having eight levels o' order of the ****atrice gendarme for both the mighty charge ability plus the steal the glory which improbable stacks with seize the moment.  so 2x each attack of opportunity. 

longspear is gonna result in the eye-popping damage totals, particular with a level 20 gendarme, but a high crit reach weapon is where the bonuses from ever ready, seize the moment and steal the glory pay off extreme dividends. 

ever ready, btw, is one o' those overlooked attack bonus factors when persons consider improbable late game boss bloat. with all the attacks per round a late game party manages, it is likely there will be at least one crit achieved per round and with ever ready and seize the moment those crits result in attacks of opportunity which have an attack and damage bonus, likely leading to additional crits and additional seize the moment part-wide damage opportunities. am able to generate +90 ab for a vanilla paladin and lateish game seelah even w/o stuff such as touch of good or true strike, but on an attack o' opportunity she is gonna get an additional +8 to +10 depending on mythic level and if she is wielding finnean, chances are she needs a whole lot less to hit anyways. 

edit: am gonna mention once again how we actual dislike the aforementioned nonsense 'cause the ability to generate functional late game boss killing insta kills if you manage to have even one o' your animal companions or melee party members land a crit is exact why owlcat resorted to bloat to maintain at least some semblance o' a challenge. is no reason why @Gorthand others playing on core and normal should need have to suffer from the trickle down bloat effect o' owlcat not making any efforts to balance wotr. exploitive nonsense being part of wotr and embraced by the developers is exact why normal and core is having such relative punishing boss battles. 

however, am gonna once again recognize wotr sales has been good, so the motivation for owlcat to change the current balance scheme is unlikely to be strong. wotr is a game meant for the hardcore and am s'posing there is nothing wrong with that, though am personal seeing as lazy and unnecessarily punishing for players who don't wanna learn every nuance o' pathfinder.

HA! Good Fun!

 

Edited by Gromnir
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"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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As a by the way as I need to play Raft with my nephew now, I just tried making a mercenary, right now it seems to be getting either a level of Hellknight or a level of Demonslayer, not both, as otherwise you end up with a level 19 horse. Like already noticed, something wonky is going on with animal companion levels right now. Demonslayer is probably the level to drop here. Are nice bonuses, but Smite Chaos prevails.

@KP From Another World don't forget Spirited Charge, it's on the Sohei bonus list of feats anyway. :p

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10 minutes ago, majestic said:

 

@KP From Another World don't forget Spirited Charge, it's on the Sohei bonus list of feats anyway. :p

yeah, sohei able to get spirited charge w/o prerequisites. is one reason am frequent using the monk archetype as a one level dip... just mentioned spirited charge but am doubting kp reads our posts so is good you identified.

HA! Good Fun!

ps owlcat doesn't mention all the fixes in their patches. a couple o' our animal companions sudden had free level-ups following the most recent hotfix, but is nevertheless inexplicable why many combinations o' classes with domain granted animal companions and level-one animal companion grant classes is nevertheless behaving different based on what should be identical resolutions. 

Edited by Gromnir
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"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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47 minutes ago, Gromnir said:

yeah, sohei able to get spirited charge w/o prerequisites. is one reason am frequent using the monk archetype as a one level dip... just mentioned spirited charge but am doubting kp reads our posts so is good you identified.

Yeah, I only glanced over your post before, uhm, posting. :)

2 hours ago, Gromnir said:

kinda already did. the levels of mutation result in missing out on improved quarry, so the +4 alchemical boost to dex  results in a net gain o' zero to ab plus the loss o' your final favored enemy, which 'cause o' favoured enemy + instant enemy results in another +2 attack bonus sacrifice. by taking mutation warrior levels, you do effective get a bonus you cannot match with favoured enemy +instant enemy... but functionally your ab is only better for two rounds as you are gimping your favoured enemy + instant enemy benefits while sacrificing casts o' instant enemy not to mention making it impossible to get improved quarry, which is one o' arue's best abilities.

all too often the level dips don't provide the upside one imagines.

With the five levels of Mutation Warrior Aru can play make belief in her dream that every melee ally has Seize The Moment and threaten Attacks of Opportunity at 15 feet with a +6 damage bonus (at max level). Weapon Specialization and it's Mythic improvement and Weapon Training makes sure she deals more damage than the increase in Favored Enemy even with Instant Enemy factored in. That just leaves Improved Quarry out - which is indeed a very nice ability - and the +1 to Ranger's Bond.

Basically, put her close enough to the frontline and she'll be playing Hawkeye whenever something moves or something eats a critical strike. With her DEX being what it is, there'll be plenty of Attacks of Opportunity for her. With Abundant Casting she has eight slots in level 3 at Ranger 15, that should be enough even without populating other levels.

Technically Fighter's Tactics will also copy her Outflank, but I don't see any characters standing in melee without having Outflank, so the benefit is lessened compared to Seize The Moment, which has a higher opportunity cost.

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3 hours ago, majestic said:

don't forget Spirited Charge, it's on the Sohei bonus list of feats anyway. :p

Yeah, I'm using a mod that fixes it, the cavalier captsone, and vital strike to roll separately from crit multiplied damage but still getting another damage instance on charge for a feat (without prereqs to boot for sohei) is still too good to pass up. Especially if it triggers on every attack when you do a pounce charge. **** will ****ing melt HARDCORE TO THE MEGA.

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1 hour ago, majestic said:

That just leaves Improved Quarry out - which is indeed a very nice ability - and the +1 to Ranger's Bond.

oh, well that's all? 

'course you are also ignoring the five levels o' increased spell casting and part o' the point o' the video is explaining how important is instant enemy.  you are suggesting sacrificing attack bonus for five points o' damage... and the plus five is only at mythic 10, so the last five minutes o' the game plus inevitable excess? is not a decent trade in most circumstances. 

wanna turn aru into a snapshot archer? is not as if we ain't seen the neoseeker build you reference, the one where seize the moment, point blank master and outflank come at levels 17 through 19 respective and is a build which looks much better on paper than in practice, 'cause if you have a party with animal companions, and @Gorthand most o' us do, then arue is gonna be spending at least a round simple getting into snapshot useful ranges as she is gonna be backline with the casters sans a mount while all the melee characters rush forward. wanna factor in the lost round o' damage? 

again, have seen and tested the neoseeker build and it works much better in theory than in practice. you can do all the snap shot and seize the moment stuff as a ranger, so that is not really on point anway. the only thing you genuine gain from mutagen warrior is the mutagen dex bonus which isn't the bonus it seems (+2 dex mod) and weapon specialization and on paper those lose to improved quarry, additional casts o' instant enemy and the final tier o' favored enemy, unless you are really attached to the extra five points of damage. personal we will take the improved party buffs and ab boosts. 

*shrug*

regardless, is more than one way to build arue just as there is more than one way to build seelah. am finding arue is quite effective as a vanilla ranger but the problem is most folks just don't get how instant enemy works and the synergy it has with ranger's bond.  no way am giving up five levels o' ranger spell casting and the final level o' favoured enemy for weapon specialization and the mythic specialization... 'cause improved quarry complete smokes mutagen and the delay o' favoured enemy increases is too costly. regardless, find a way to put arue on a dog, wolf or other trip animal companion with full or near full levels and am gonna be in complete agreement 'bout the viability o' a snap shot arue build.  did that with an urban hunter lann and while it were taking effort to get right,  it were indeed more than viable. 

HA! Good Fun!

ps(edit) another highly underrated attribute and its related feats is initiative. our first character in wotr were an inquisitor archer who had improved initiative and mythic improved initiative. being able to act first is vast underrated. 'stead o' chasing weapon specialization for the minor addition to damage it provides, am gonna suggest improved initiative and mythic improved initiative is a superior goal. 

Edited by Gromnir
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"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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3 hours ago, Gromnir said:

regardless, is more than one way to build arue just as there is more than one way to build seelah. am finding arue is quite effective as a vanilla ranger but the problem is most folks just don't get how instant enemy works and the synergy it has with ranger's bond.  no way am giving up five levels o' ranger spell casting and the final level o' favoured enemy for weapon specialization and the mythic specialization... 'cause improved quarry complete smokes mutagen and the delay o' favoured enemy increases is too costly. regardless, find a way to put arue on a dog, wolf or other trip animal companion with full or near full levels and am gonna be in complete agreement 'bout the viability o' a snap shot arue build.  did that with an urban hunter lann and while it were taking effort to get right,  it were indeed more than viable. 

HA! Good Fun!

ps(edit) another highly underrated attribute and its related feats is initiative. our first character in wotr were an inquisitor archer who had improved initiative and mythic improved initiative. being able to act first is vast underrated. 'stead o' chasing weapon specialization for the minor addition to damage it provides, am gonna suggest improved initiative and mythic improved initiative is a superior goal. 

I think I actually gave her improved initiative, but not the mythic improved initiative. I.e. too halfhearted and a waste of a feat. Either do it fully or don't do it at all (/Yoda)

Once back in Drezen, I'll probably return her to all ranger again. No, she's never going to survive in a melee and it is part of the challenge to stop enemies from shouldering their way through the front liners to get to her (and Ember), as they seem to be priority targets after Seelah's horse 😂

I haven't read everything in detail yet, but I'll go back over the last handful posts in this thread as I saw a lot of tips for Seelah when skimming through it fast (because I was lazy, lying in my bed and reading on my tiny little phone screen) 👍

Edit: Speaking of Drezen, almost made my way through those Tesla cultists. Defeated what I think is another mini boss and looted some gear that looks like the fantasy version of a gauss blaster. Since I had already given Ember elemental affinity for fire and electricity, she can now spam a lot of chain lightning and other electron heavy ordinance against villains, ignoring their resistances. Iirc, it only works for spontaneous casters, so she can either keep it or hand it over to Camellia I suppose, but the latter is not currently in my party.

“He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would surely suffice.” - Albert Einstein
 

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So, the Crimson Dust location that I forgot to visit until now turned out to be very rewarding.
 

Spoiler

I defeated the Colossal Titan from Attack on Titan Sinful Sinew and received 20736 xp for each character. Is this intended? That was a lot and exactly what I needed to reach level 13. Nenio got another metamagic feat (Persistent), Ember and Sosiel got Spell Penetration, Arueshalae picked Improved Critical for Longbows, my mc got Persuasive and the melee units learned the CMD feat. I rushed to talk to the only survivor in the area and was caught completely by surprise, but it seems Arueshalae killed the beast almost all on her own, with a little help from Ember.

Sinful-Sinew.jpg

 

I went to Elan's wedding too.

Spoiler

It was more like One Wedding and a Hundred Funerals, what a mother****** jewelry maker! He got more people compromised all over Mendev than anyone else on the demons' side.

Next target is Blackwater.

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3 hours ago, Gorth said:

Once back in Drezen, I'll probably return her to all ranger again. No, she's never going to survive in a melee and it is part of the challenge to stop enemies from shouldering their way through the front liners to get to her (and Ember), as they seem to be priority targets after Seelah's horse 😂

too be fair, and as we mentioned in our most recent post, there is nothing 'bout five levels of mutagen warrior for arue which requires you to take snapshot feats. snapshot is great for an archer riding a trip capable beast 'cause on the enemy suffering a trip from your dog/wolf/whatever, and then the attempted rise from prone, your archer gets attackS o' opportunity. eventual you get similar attacks o' opportunity when any nearby trip or critical hit from a party member occurs. such an archer build can be devastating and hilarious.

the thing is, typical your archer is sitting back with ember and nenio, yes? part o' the point o' archers is you are able to, from range, w/o wasting a move action, hit with a full attack the enemy casters and archers who may be behind melee attackers, or spread out elsewhere 'cross the map. move into snapshot range is kinda a niche thing for an unmounted archer and is more difficult to routine pull off the trick than it might appear from a mere description o' feats and powhaz.

however, if you like the initial boost mutagen provides, and you discover using instant enemy and ranger bond is unnecessarily cumbersome, then is no reason to abandon mutagen 'cause of a fear o' needing be a melee range archer. simple choose other feats. is plenty o' other valuable archer kinda feats.

am genuine kinda mystified by the horse experience you suffer. horsies is ordinarily pretty capable tanks. maybe not as viable as a leopard or the complete unnecessary scaled fist/nature mystery sorc nonsense, but at least as good as camellia. what ac are you able to generate with her ambulatory bag o' alpo?

aside, by now you got access to displacement, improved invisibility, and blur. don't underestimate the value o' such spells. sure, some higher level demons got true seeing, and that will be an increasingly common attribute, but many do not, particular the trash mobs. displacement results in a 50% miss chance. is no save involved or spell resistance check. if the enemy you face don't have true seeing, scent, echolocation or the like, their targeted attacks is gonna mis half the time. 

outta curiosity, what archetype is your seelah's horse using? both daredevil and bulwark are decent choices, though am admitting we rare use bulwark. 

HA Good Fun!

ps(edit) is ez to overlook the big game gloves which @Gorthalready possesses but likely doesn't get too much use from, becomes ridiculous op once you get improved quarry. seriously, the free action aspect means every arue target is gonna have the quarry effect applied as well as the big game gloves debuff. is an additional -2 to foe ac plus sickened... no save

Edited by Gromnir
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