This guide will try to inform your decisions on character creation, it is not meant to tell you how to play but to show you the best options so you have a fun experience playing this lengthy game with custom characters or edited party members.
- Definitive Guide to Character Creation
- Classes – Alchemist, Arcanist, Barbarian, Bard
- Classes – Bard, Bloodrager, Cavalier, Cleric
- Classes – Druid, Fighter, Hunter, Inquisitor
- Classes – Kineticist, Magus, Monk, Oracle
- Classes – Oracle, Paladin, Ranger, Rogue, Shaman
- Classes – Skald, Slayer, Sorcerer, Warpriest
- Classes – Witch, Wizard
- Prestige Classes
- Items of Note
Definitive Guide to Character Creation
Building a character in this game is a lot, and I want to help inform you and guide you a bit in this process. I will never suggest you MUST pick something, just inform you what is really good, if you have a character idea that goes against what is considered “correct” go for it, this is all about fantasy!
Have the game in Windowed mode and set the steam launch option as ‘-popupwindow’ and you will be able to alt tab at will without minimizing.
You get three free respecs from the Pathfinder Society NPC that you can get mercenaries from.
If you want to respec your party members, below will be a link to a very light respecing tool so you can keep the cool characters but change them to the class you want, you can fully customize them and their appearance, or just change what they start as level 1, it’s all up to you.
- S Best of the best.
- A Great at what it does.
- B Gets the job done.
- C Weak, needs work to get going, or gives up too much.
Note that each race has an unique feat that can go along with it.
Getting a free feat is so absolutely ridiculous that in some cases it’s just hard to justify picking anything other than human as it can help you progress to other feats or get your build online much faster, and you can dump int and still have 2 good skills.
In this game there are a ton of enemies with spell resistances, so the racial feat can save you a feat slot by itself, or make it even more likely to beat it if you take the other feats too, they are the best int caster race.
Average abilities, Barrows is the best heritage because undead is a common enemy.
If you want to focus on illusion magic then basic is best, pyromaniac is a great pick for obvious reason, and traveler gives you 30 movement which can help if you hate the 20 movement.
Hasty is the best choice because having standard movement speed is great and +2 initiative is worth half a feat and helps if you always want to go first.
You can take Dual Heritage to save a feat, or you can get Kindred-Raised to get +2 to cha in addition to your choice of any stat getting +2 (so you can start with 22 cha), either are great choices for a cha caster. Basic is fine if you want to get a big bonus to one skill.
Tribal is great for +1 to saves and Human-Raised is good if you want to dump int but still want 2 good skills.
Great stats, some free abilities and AC from wings, pretty great.
Great stats and a great bonus, same as Aasimar, the exception is motherless because it gets a bite attack that you can scale.
Ironsoul is best because of lead blades, but you need to make use of the awkward stats.
Undead so you can heal yourself with inflict spells, has a fun feat to get a guaranteed 20 on persuasion checks.
Decent, pick int one for skills or casting, cha one for persuasion or casting
Classes – Alchemist, Arcanist, Barbarian, Bard
Preface: Any class that levels straight 1-20 by itself is powerful and can do a lot, multiclassing can save you feats or give you synergies that you couldn’t get otherwise, so don’t feel obligated to do either, just do what you enjoy.
You might notice that casters are ranked higher than most martial characters, it’s as the saying goes, linear fighters and quadratic wizards, magic is so good and so useful, but with the mythic paths, everyone gets to do broken stuff and gets access to insane abilities/spells.
If a class has a special ability associated with it, please check the section Class Abilities for further info.
This class is a great support, the bombs can get very powerful damage types to overcome tough resistances, the mutagen can buff you so your attacks are decent, and the ability to use spells with the range of “self” to touch is absolutely insane, you can give your two handed fighter the shield ability that gives +4 AC, cast false life on a squishy character, and so much more.Do note that the subclasses are typically better than the base class in most circumstances.
This is an okay option than the base class, you give up your poison resistance that isn’t very useful for some healing abilities along with some ailment removal, but you can typically do better with other subclasses.
Your bombs ignore allies and you get stronger options to use them, a great choice if you want a ranged support with some good aoe potential.
Incense Synthesizer A
You give up some of your bomb progression and lose your mutagens to get a very unique buff, the incense fog gives a +1 bonus to attack and weapon damage rolls, what makes this unique is that the bonus is alchemical, which is extremely rare so it will never conflict with any other effect, you get some additional buffs you can apply to it as you go along and can be a good choice if you want to go full support.
You can turn into an animal and eventually a dragon, but you give up your bombs entirely for it, so you need to be ready to go into melee as your beast form once you use all your resources.
You lose your useless poison resistance for some great summon spells, and you get a LEVEL 9 SPELL TO USE AT SPELL LEVEL 6, all while keeping your bombs and great support abilities, contender for best summoner in the game.
You replace bombs for sneak attack at the same frequency as a rogue, which is insane as it is. You lose the bomb discoveries that you couldn’t use anyway and get most of the options from rogue talents, including choosing combat feats every other level, AND you keep your great support spell casting. This class is among the best classes in the entire game and a strong candidate for the best period.
The casting system for this class is great, you pick the spells you want like a wizard, but can cast them at any variation like a sorcerer. The arcane pool you use can afford you with a variety abilities for utility, defense, or offense, giving you lots of options in lieu of your less variety of a wizard, and you can use 1 point to boost DC or spell level by 1, which is a pretty good effect!
Brown-Fur Transmuter S
This class gets the ability to share their self transmutation spells with their allies, or simply boost the potency of their attribute buff spells, what’s insane is you can give super buffs that would normally turn this character into a decent fighter, and instead give the superbuff to your fighter to blow up every enemy, or just turn them into a dragon.
Eldritch Font A
Get some strong boosts to your spells at the cost of fatigue or exhaustion, so find ways to circumvent that (Paladin Mercy), but the level 20 ability is really good in that you can prepare new spells once per day and get half your arcane pool.
Nature Mage B
You use the Druid spellbook instead of the wizard, so it’s there if you need it.
Phantasmal Mage A
Some illusion spells are the best control spells in the game, so this class’ ability to modify them with metamagic abilities is a welcome addition, though you lose the ability to boost the caster level of the spell, but casting a selective phantasmal web without the feat is phenomenal. You must be a Gnome to pick this class.
Unlettered Arcanist B
You use the Witch spellbook instead of the wizard, so it’s there if you need it, and you get a familiar.
White Mage C
You give up some exploits to gain the ability to heal, but using these heals will use your arcane pool and spell slots very quickly.
You rage, and you smash, simple enough to get the job done, and your rage powers can go for more damage, some utility, or defense.
Armored Hulk C
You get AC against crit rolls that won’t stop you from getting hit, and lose your uncanny dodge so you will get eaten alive by sneak attacks, not that great.
Beastkin Berserker C
You lose some rage powers in return for the ability to turn into a wolf, leopard, or a bear, if you could turn into some better beast it would be stronger but it is too weak otherwise.
Instinctual Warrior A
This is a monk barbarian, your wis is added to AC when unarmored (don’t know if it stacks with the monk bonus), you get a rage and some ki powers along with some rage powers, pretty great class. You do trade some rage powers for the blind fight line of feats which are pretty useful anyway.
Invulnerable Rager A
A lot of enemies use rapid attacks and your DR- you gain reduces the damage taken from each attack, which can result in some insane damage reduction. I recommend this class over the base barbarian because you become much tankier.
Mad Dog A
You get an animal companion which is great as is, but you get some major bonuses while you both are attacking the same target, and your beast gets the trip feat for free, so make sure you and your pet both get the team feats Outflank, and Tandem Trip and you will stomp all over your enemies. Make sure your pet can get the feat combat expertise with 13 int for tandem trip if you choose to take it.
Pack Rager C
You give up some rage powers that could buff your teammates already instead for some teamwork feats that you can only share one of during your rage for most of the game, most of the time the only teamwork feat you need is outflank so this is pretty bad unless you must have the teamwork feats.
An extremely powerful support class, has a wide variety of spells to buff and disable, some free feats, an insane amount of skills, and the performances you get are absolutely insane and will assist you throughout the entire game. I suggest you do not use this class as a squishy ranged support, you can cast with a heavy shield and wear light armor, throw on a dex weapon and get up in your enemies face, but feel free to if you wish.
Instead of buffing your allies with your song, you buff yourself, except you buff pretty much every aspect of your character, so if you want a great support spellcaster that can also do some decent melee or ranged damage, this a great choice.
Beast Tamer A
You keep your great support spells, but get some summoning abilities added, can turn any of your spell into a summon just like a druid, and your main song is changed to buff your summons alongside your party members along with buffing them with the magic fang effect, a great choice if you want a support summoner.
Dirge Bard A
You can use your song to summon skeletons, a great option if you want to gum up the battlefield before buffing up your companions, but remember when the song ends the skeletons die.
Flame Dancer B
You add some fire spells to your spellist which is okay, and you lose your skill bonus song for a song that gives fire resistance. If you tend to blast your allies with fireballs this is decent but overall you could get a lot more from your class.
Classes – Bard, Bloodrager, Cavalier, Cleric
You lose your skill check song for an aoe blast that uses your performances, this ability does sonic damage that is rarely resisted and can potentially cause a stun.
Tranquil Whisperer A
You trade your songs for a song that gives AC, which is pretty rare actually, you need to make the call if the loss of inspire courage is worth it though, or if you get it from other sources, the point is the song can give an AC buff to your party that is very rare.
You give up some of the rage powers of a barbarian for the powers of a bloodline instead, and a small pool of spells to use (most importantly mirror image). I would say this class is stronger in general than a barbarian, but both are great at their job.
You get a companion and the ability to mount them if you wish, a great side option though you lose some abilities that affect your survivability to be sure to use a reach weapon.
You gain some summon spells, which is okay but you really shouldn’t be using your very important slots to summon some weak minions, yes you do buff them a bit but it isn’t that strong by the time you get them.
Mixed-Blood Rager B
You can choose a second bloodline that you can swap over each day, which can be good if you want to swap the role of your character around, but you lose your ability to cast spells which can be pretty critical to your character.
You can give up bloodline powers for rage powers, so if there’s a bloodline with an effect you really like but some not so useful effects, you can give those up for some rage powers, this is incredibly powerful.
You gain fast healing at a very slow rate, and you can eat your spells to heal a meagre amount when in fact you should be casting them to do more useful stuff.
You lose some defensive abilities in return for the ability to wear armor, which you could instead just take a feat for, not that great.
Reformed Fiend A
There are a ton of demons in this game, so your hatred against evil and must stronger DR- versus evil can bull some insane weight. You are locked to Abyssal or Infernal bloodlines, but they’re both pretty good. You must be a tiefling for this class.
You gain a horse and some bonus feats for combat, teamwork, an order to modify your abilities, a great, solid martial class.
Beast Rider A
You lose heavy armor proficiency but get access to most of the animal companion, a great trade in your favor.
Disciple of the Pike A
You lose your animal companion but get a lot of buffs to your abilities with spears and against larger enemies, decent trade.
Fearsome Leader B
You give up some teamwork feats for dazzling display and the ability to dispel fears, not a good trade as fears can be avoided with other buffs.
You trade your teamwork feats for a lot more combat feats, think of this as a fighter with an animal companion.
Knight of the Wall A
You lose your teamwork feats for some bonuses to your shield, which is great if you need this character to tank for you.
Standard Bearer C
You get a weaker animal companion for a stronger banner, the problem is that the banner is replaced by the bless spell at level 1, it is not worth the trade.
Cavalier of the Paw A
You can get a dog or wolf instead of a horse, which is good because both are better than horses, and you get an ability that allows your companions to reroll any failed save three times in a day, which is a great support ability. The giant slayer ability you get can shred some bosses apart. You lose your Order ability which is okay. You must be a Halfling to choose this class.
I’m going to be honest, clerics are ridiculous, they can solve almost any problem your party is facing through their spells, get access to channeling to mass heal or damage, and on top of that you get some great buffs and utility through domains, almost every party needs a cleric or at least a divine caster. Can be played as a variety of themes, a tanky fighter, a damage dealer, a ranged support, and a lot more.
Angelfire Apostle S
This is a cleric that can use their channel ability after casting a spell to unleash a burst of damage to all enemies that includes holy damage which is very good, a great option if you want to deal some damage in addition to your spells, and the downside of less spells per day is negated by abundant casting. You do lose your medium armor proficiencies so you can go dex based, or just go to ranged combat.
Normally a crusader gives up a huge amount spells per day and a domain in return for some combat feats, and normally that’d be a tough trade, but with mythic paths giving you bonus spell slots (abundant casting) you can ignore the downside and pick this for a more fighting sided cleric, great class.
Devilbane Priest A
You get heavy armor, some option feats and a skill bonus, but you lose a domain, so you gotta make the call if this is worth over a crusader who does the same but you get better options.
This is the opposite of the crusader, you give up your fighting abilities along with armor proficiencies for expanded spellcasting and some good buffs you can give your party, a great choice if you want a ranged caster with some more utility.
Herald Caller S
You give up a domain for some free summoning feats, which is pretty great, turn your spells into summon spells rather than healing and give up your medium armor proficiency, a great option if you want a strong summoner.
Priest of Balance S
You lose a domain but gain both channel abilities and they get empowered when you swap using them, this will eat the horde of chaff enemies apart and heal your teammates, be sure to get Selective Channeling feat and you are ready to rock.
Classes – Druid, Fighter, Hunter, Inquisitor
Full caster with an animal companion with the ability to use any spell as a summon spell instead, pretty great, gives you another option in the divine spell list if you don’t want a cleric, a great class. You can transform into animals if you want to get up close and personal after using your spells.
Blight Druid A
Give up your animal companion for a domain and a few bonus abilities that are mediocre, it’s an okay choice but you still have a great spell list to use.
Defender of the True World B
You go all in on anti fey effects, the problem is that there aren’t a lot of fey in the game.
You get some abilities to buff your party, and the buffs can give some really powerful bonuses to your archers, and some combat maneuvers for your frontline, so this can save you some feats and give you a lot more utility.
Elemental Rampager A
Druid barbarian, so you lose your companion for a claw attack and a rage, with some buff associated with it, pretty good option for a more fighty druid.
Enchantment and Illusion spells are the best disabling spells in the game, so you get to add the best of them to your great spell list, and your animal forms are delayed but you still keep the best ones. Great pick for a controlling caster.
Primal Druid S
You get less options for your animal companion, but they are all really good options (including dinosaurs). Instead of getting summoning spells you get enlarge person to use as any spell, which can be a great buff option, and the use of it on yourself is stronger than normal so you can do some serious damage in melee with a weapon or your animal form.
Feats, feats, and more feats, this class is a absolutely incredible attacking enemies with whatever you choose, just make sure to put your feats to good use to become even better, this is called the main dipping class because the bonus feats and weapon specialization feat a level 4 are really useful for any character focused on weapons or just all the proficiencies you get from level 1 in addition to a combat feat is great too.
Aldori Defender A
You go all in on dueling swords, which there are a decent amount of good ones of, you get a bunch of defensive abilities that can make you next to impossible to hit, be sure to focus on dex with this class.
This is the in lore class you take before becoming a Hellknight, you gain some bonuses from your order and get a better version of bravery for disabling spells, which is welcome, it’s an okay class. YOU ARE NOT REQUIRED TO TAKE THIS TO BECOME A HELLKNIGHT.
Drangonheir Scion B
You give up some feats for some okay abilities, but get a dragon bloodline instead for some minor bonuses to AC and damage increases, this is an okay option if you want to use dragon discipline but want a martial dip instead of another source, but honestly 1 level of bloodrager is better than this.
Mutation Warrior S
This is the premiere 4 level dip for the fighter class, you get a great mutagen ability for your primary attacking stat, a bunch of feats, and a bunch of attack bonus, if you want to go all in on this, go right ahead because the discoveries you get can improve your mutagens and you don’t really lose much going this class other than armor training.
Tower Shield Specialist B
If you want a tank with a good attacking ability, this is your pick, but you can get super high AC other ways without being so restricted, still a good option.
Two Handed Fighter A
You get free maneuvers, a huge increase to your damage, a boost to your maneuvers, a great choice for a big damage two handed fighter.
Great damage dealer with a good number of buffs for their animal companion and yourself, be sure to make use of those teamwork feats you and your companion get. Your spell list is actually pretty useful for buffs and defensive options for your companions.
Colluding Scoundrel A
You force a target to attack your animal companion or companion or else they have much less accurate attack, and you get bonuses for attack them in turn, a pretty decent option though you lose some of your pet buffs.
Divine Hound S
You are forced to choose a dog or wolf, which are among the best choices for an animal companion, and you gain judgements instead of animal focuses, which are much better in my opinion, a great option to deal tons of damage.
Divine Hunter S
You lose your teamwork feats for a domain of a cleric and your pet gets a smite good or smite evil ability, make sure your pet has good cha or else the smite won’t do extra damage, an amazing damage dealer option considering the amount of evil enemies in the game.
You lose your animal companion for some bonus combat feats, the ability to share you teamwork feats to your allies, and favored terrain. It’s okay but you give up a lot when there aren’t that many really good teamwork feats.
Urban Hunter A
You must pick a dog or a horse, and you both get a free combat maneuver to use instead of teamwork feats, a great option for a damage dealer with some battlefield control, be sure to get the teamwork feat for whichever maneuver you decide to use to better odds.
Wandering Marksman A
Give up your teamwork feats for some attack and damage bonuses while you and your animal companion are far away but attacking the same target, a great option if you want to go for ranged combat.
The base class is fine, lots of teamwork stuff to buff your team, judgements to buff yourself, and domains for even more utility, and the spellcasting gives you a lot of options, but you can typically do better by choosing a subclass. You get the solo tactics ability that allows you to benefit from teamwork feats by yourself so you can get great bonuses, and you get a weapon buff too!
This class also gets a high amount of skills so you have a very wide set of abilities to use from the class to build from.
Faith Hunter A
You give up your domain for a smite against the type of you choosing, the best type is evil for obvious reasons, the best part about the smite is that it gives +4 to attack and the bonus to damage is half your level in this class rather than depending on your cha, so your stats are under less burden.
You give up your bane and teamwork feats for the ability to share your judgements with your party, which is pretty great, and you get a smite like ability that can be used on anyone, the damage bonus is 1 + Judge level / 3, so if you go far in this class you can give your entire party +7 damage per hit against an enemy which is a insane boost in damage.
Monster Tactician A
This gives you an ability to summon monsters without spending any spell slots, and it goes up to the 9th level summon spell, which is amazing, in addition your summons act as though they have your teamwork feats which can get some pretty crazy bonuses, a great choice for a versatile summoner.
Sacred Huntmaster A
You get an animal companion who gets all your teamwork feats, but you lose your judgements, which is a good trade in your favor, you also get favored enemy which is a great bonus to get as well.
Sanctified Slayer A
You give up your judgements for sneak attack, studied target, and slayer bonus feats, ♥♥♥ that is worth it for dealing lots of damage! One note that you can take the first level of this to get the study target ability and the bonus for it stacks with other study target abilities.
Tactical Leader B
You can share your teamwork feats, and give buffs using your judgements, its okay but as said before, there are only a few really good teamwork feats.
Classes – Kineticist, Magus, Monk, Oracle
This class is a damage dealing king with lots of abilities to adapt and change your attacks, when you get to a certain level, you can completely control entire areas of the battlefield, your resource burn can make you very fragile as you go along without rest. This has an S because it’s very simple and does tons of damage, it’s the full package and the other subclasses are just as good.
Blood Kineticist B
You give up some infusions for some mediocre abilities that are for disabling, but the effects they try to inflict are pretty average, you can do a lot better.
Dark Elementalist A
Use your int instead of your con for the burn mechanic, and you can use dead bodies to offload your burn and gain more damage, it’s quite potent and gets stronger the more souls you use, so while most classes get weaker as they use their resources, this one gets stronger with more damage.
Elemental Engine A
You get huge damage bonuses when you are at maximum burn, but you will be extremely fragile because your con bonus will be so low, so you need to be aware of the risks, you do get some great defensive bonuses from this class while at max burn. Once you are at max burn you get the ability to reduce burn cost of certain abilities with your gather power ability.
Kinetic Knight A
You lose some of your infusion abilities but gain an elemental sword to deal huge amounts of single target damage while able to rock heavy armor and a shield, this is a great class for a solid frontliner rather than the squishy fragile Kineticist.
Overwhelming Soul B
You are restricted from getting burn, which is a bit more consistent, but you lose a lot of flexibility, but on the other hand you do get a damage boost to your kinetic blast, you use cha instead of con for your kinetic blasts so you aren’t as fragile.
You use wis instead of con, but instead of taking nonlethal damage you get penalties to you wisdom save, so you need to be protected from those effects because you will fail every one when you are at max burn.
You are a great damage dealer and buffer, you get great defensive tools in spells and armor, though you only get medium then heavy armor later, you can boost your weapon with a variety of unique buffs, and can attack and use spells together (only touch spells), a great option for a caster fighter hybrid.
Arcane Rider B
You lose your ability to wear medium and heavy armor in turn for a horse, it’s an okay trade but you need to be aware that you are very squishy because you can’t wear a shield and only wear light armor, so it might be worth it to use a reach weapon and forgo the spell attack options but still use your buffs and arcana.
Armored Battlemage A
You start being able to wear medium armor and quickie enough get the ability to wear heavy armor, you lose your spell combat ability, but this is a great choice for a tanky heavy armor wearing guy with a shield or a two handed weapon with lots of self buffs and weapon buffs.
Eldritch Archer B
You do the same as a regular magus but can use a bow instead, it’s a great option but it might be worth to go only two levels into this for the spell cast via bow and go for something to get you a better spell list or boost your archery abilities, but is still great pure class.
Eldritch Scion S
You learn and cast spells like a sorcerer, get some metamagic bonus feats with your arcana, and you get a bloodline with the powers associated with it, this is one of the best classes for a dragon disciple but can benefit from all the bloodlines, a great choice regardless.
You add in some hexes for your arcana, this could be okay but those arcana are really important for your power regardless, maybe tax one or two hexes max.
Sword Saint S
You pick a weapon of your choice and become a master of it, you lose your armor abilities other than light, and your int score can be added to your AC, with this class you become this greatest damage dealer in the game with weapons, you are able to make your attacks roll max damage, add addition critical effects, and much more, this class is a glass cannon.
Spell Dancer B
You lose your medium and heavy armor proficiencies, your arcane weapon ability for a spell dance ability that gives you movement and AC bonus against Attack of Opportunity, it’s okay and you eventually get some more AC bonuses, and you specialize in dodging Attack of Opportunity, it’s an okay class, you must be an Elf to pick this class.
You are a great melee character with wis to AC, lots of powers through KI, combat maneuvers, a bunch of bonus feats, and a lot more, this class is phenomenal damage dealer and can tank pretty well with buffs, be sure to get a necklace amulet of agile fists so you can use your dex for damage instead of strength.
Quarterstaff Master A
Furry of bows for quarterstaffs, upgrades damage dice of your quarterstaff weapon, you get three combat maneuvers, pretty great class since there are some powerful quarter staffs.
Scaled Fist S
You get to use your cha instead of wis for AC, which makes this have a great dip for 2 paladin so you can get your cha to saves as well, it isn’t required but is optional. This class gets a dragon bloodline to choose, so makes a good candidate for dragon disciple and becoming a strength based monk instead of dex, the feats and abilities you get are more focused on damage but still phenomenal.
You become more support oriented by dropping your bonus feats for two good bard songs, and the ability to use your ki powers on your allies, it’s a decent melee support.
You get a horse animal companion, can use flurry of blows with a polearm, can use your ki powers with your melee weapon, and a lot of feats for your mount, it’s a great alternative take on the monk as a powerful mounted damage dealer.
Traditional Monk B
You do not get any choices for ki powers, and the ones you get are okay, so if it fits what you want, go for it.
Zen Archer A
You get flurry of blows for your bow, get ki powers for you bow, and can use wis instead of dex for your bow attack rolls, and get a ton of archer feats to use, phenomenal class and great 3 level dip if you are going to want an archer for a wisdom based caster.
Student of Stone B
You get some DR, some damage, and some other defensive abilities, its okay but not great either. You must be an Oread for this class.
You cast divine spells like a sorcerer, the curses and revelation give some great bonuses to your character and can have a huge amount of spells per day, phenomenal caster, the only reason it’s not a S like a cleric is that you aren’t able to have every option available to solve every problem like the cleric can.
Divine Herbalist B
You get a scaling healing ability, and a way to remove conditions with a DC check, but you pay by losing 2 discoveries, both of which are very important to your progression, and you get plenty of healing abilities anyway.
Enlightened Philosopher B
You gain 1 int per 3 levels starting at level 7, for a cha casting class, not that great for losing a revelation.
Lone Strider B
You get a teleport which is very rare for a divine caster, and some concealment abilities, pretty nice if you want some protection versus archers.
Staggered for the first round of combat, is a big price to pay for some defensive buffs to save and AC, kinda okay.
You get a big boost to trickery to disarm traps, which is welcome, and you get three spellcasting feats at the cost of one revelation, which is pretty good.
Wind Whisperer A
You get a free haste aura, and a free freedom of movement aura, both are phenomenal, you are forced to take the wind mystery which is pretty good.
Classes – Oracle, Paladin, Ranger, Rogue, Shaman
You give up your healing abilities for the ability for your channel energy to do damage to outsiders, which happen to be the most common enemy type, and you get heavy armor proficiencies which is pretty great, in addition to an ability to remove a curse or enchantment effect on an ally with a charisma check.
You mess up evil enemies, and this game is full of them. There are some weapons that give bonus abilities to paladins which are great, smite evil and destroy them while getting a ton of buffs and spells, you can get a weapon buff or a horse at level 6. Great frontliner and or damage dealer.
Divine Guardian A
You get to choose an ally as a target of your protection and can take attacks in place of them or give them AC, so you can guard your squishy melee glass cannon or your wizard and be just fine, you do give up spellcasting but get some extra defensive feats, so it’s okay.
Divine Hunter B
You get some abilities to boost your archery abilities which is pretty good to smite and destroy enemies from afar.
Divine Scion A
You trade your smite for study target and sneak attack, which is pretty good because you can get sneak attack feats and those never run out unlike smites! One note that you can take the first level of this to get the study target ability and the bonus for it stacks with other study target abilities.
You give up smite for channel energy, it’s okay but not worth it because smite is how the paladin keeps up in the damage department.
You give up your smite for inspire courage, which is a great and welcome bonus along with some other good songs, the thing is that you use 1 hp per round to use this song, which is no big deal for anything after the first 2 levels, so it’s a great choice for a more supporting type.
Warrior of the Holy Light B
You give up your spellcasting and aura of faith for an aoe that gives buffs to you and your party when they stand in it, the problem is that the buffs can be replaced by a few spells from a divine caster that you should have in your party anyway, the only unique thing about this aoe buff is that it protects your party from crits which is decent.
You give up your smite for a simple bonus damage ability, but mainly you get AC and DR- and get the defensive stand from stalwart defender prestige class along with some defensive powers along the way, great choice for a beefy tank. You must be a dwarf to pick, this class.
Great damage dealing class with animal companion, be sure to get the boon companion feat to make it have +3 levels. Your combat style feats let you get some stuff without meeting the requirements so go crazy on what you use, and be sure to use your buff spells. Great damage class.
Lots of demons in this game so this is just better than the base ranger in most cases.
Espionage Expert A
No animal companion but you can share your favored enemy bonus with your party which can be pretty great as long as you choose demons and outsiders.
Flame Warden C
You lose your animal companion for some fire spells and feats, the problem is that you get them so late that they are irrelevant.
Flanking in this game is extremely easy, so you can get a +2 bonus to your entire party very easily along with marking a target for you allies to attack, a great choice.
Archery based ranger with a horse, a great choice with all your free feats for archery.
You lose your animal companion for some buffs to your bow that only work with crits, the feats are nice but the Nomad is better if you want an archer.
Great damage class, great skills, and a lot of options on builds with your mountain of feats.
Eldritch Scoundrel A
You give up some feats and sneak attack for spellcasting, which is a great trade, this class can do some serious work with your magical utility and defenses.
Knife Master A
While using a knife your sneak attack damage dice is increased to d8 instead of d6, which is a lot if you intend to max out your sneak attack, this is a great choice if you want a dual wielding rogue to blow up enemies.
You focus on vital strikes, which means you want a weapon with big damage dice, so pick up a polearm or greataxe with reach and blow people up.
Sylvan Trickster B
You get some hexes in your rogue talent list which can give you some damage, utility, defense, or more, it’s a great choice to have more options for you actions ingame.
Focuses on debuffing enemies with effects, though some of them aren’t very useful against a lot of enemies.
Underground Chemist B
You get a throw anything feat and a single discovery, not that great sadly.
Master of All B
You give up some sneak attack dice for a skill boost feat, it’s okay if you want to be really good in particular skills, good choice for a tricker who uses their skills in unique ways.
A very versatile full caster, the spirit you choose can greatly change your purpose for your team, same goes with your hexes, you can go full support, or melee damage based buffer, a great pick for your team.
Possessed Shaman B
You get some will save protection and get a bonus to particular skills, it’s okay if you need to be really good at a few particular skills.
Shadow Shaman A
You give up one hex and the wandering hex ability in return for some decent sneak attack progression which is a great boost to damage.
Spirit Hunter A
You get Object Bond to regain a spell per day, and you get weapon buff abilities like a magus, another great option for a damage dealer shaman.
Spirit Warden B
You get some undead related spells and effects the ability to channel energy only to damage undead, too bad there aren’t a whole ton of undead compared to demons.
Unsworn Shaman B
You can swap around what hexes you have, but can’t have major or grand hex so you lose a lot.
Wildland Shaman A
You get an animal companion, are forced to take a battle spirit, and lose your wandering spirit ability, it’s a great trade for you if you want to be a combat focused shaman. You must be a half orc to pick this class.
Witch Doctor B
You lose some hexes to get channel energy and can turn any of your spells into dispel magic or remove curse, a cool idea but is lacking at the end of it.
Classes – Skald, Slayer, Sorcerer, Warpriest
This is a support barbarian more or less, you are a decent caster but what makes this class great is your song gives the rage powers you choose to your allies, so you can supercharge your allies with rage powers across the board doing things that a bard can’t dream of. Throw on medium armor and a shield and go join your allies in smashing the enemies face in.
Battle Scion A
You get a choice of some teamwork feats for your rage powers that are much better than the typical tactician ability, so you can do some rage power and some teamwork feats, a great choice.
Battle Singer B
Lose some rage powers for a cone sonic attack, it’s okay but not great.
Court Poet A
Instead of buffing attack rolls and damage, you buff Int or Cha so your casters get better DCs for their spells, it’s quite a unique buff that is very rare so if you have more casters that use either of those stats its a great choice.
Demon Dancer A
Your song gives your allies claw attacks, pretty great if you have lots of melee characters that can make use of it.
Herald of the Horn B
Object bond gives you a free cast per day, sonic spell dc buffs, it’s okay.
Hunt Caller C
You get blindsense and lose some stuff, that’s about it.
You get a ton of free feats, and can ignore stat requirements like a ranger with combat style feats, get sneak attacks, has the study target ability that helps a lot, an amazing damage dealing class.
Arcane Enforcer A
You get a bunch of arcane exploits like the arcanist at the cost of a few slayer feats, and you can use them for defense, damage, utility, or support, at the bare minimum be sure to get dimensional slide to teleport into your target’s face to tear them apart, phenomenal class with a lot of utility.
You gain +2 will save throw and diehard against enemies who are two alignment steps from you, and deal 2d6 divine damage to enemies two alignment steps from you, if you want these abilities to constantly work choose Lawful Good, Neutral Good, or Lawful Neutral and they will work for almost every enemy in the game. Divine damage is among the best types of damage in the game.
This class is focused against humanoid targets, there are a decent amount but the bonuses aren’t that amazing anyway.
Spawn Slayer A
You gain bonuses against creatures greater sizes than you, and most bosses in this game are size Large and up, so you will deal more damage to them with this class, all you lose is studied target (swift) but that gets applied when you deal sneak attack damage which is negligible, I would say this is a better option than the base slayer class class.
Stygian Slayer B
You get an invisibility ability and an eventual ability to turn into incorporeal mass of mist, its okay if you want to charge head into the enemies and escape out, be warned that a large number of enemies have true sight and will see through your invisibility effect.
You can share a single teamwork feat of your choosing (Outflank) and you can share half your studied target bonus, it’s okay.
You can change martial class styles a number of times a day, but you lose so many feats, sneak attack dice, and studied targets the trade might not be worth it, its versatility versus specialization. You must be a human to pick this class.
Amazing flexibility and can conquer any threat, this and the wizard break the game and it’s par for the course for DND games where arcane casters are OP. Your bloodline gives great bonuses and spells, the subclasses for this are all incredible, but the base class is just universally powerful.
Give up some spell slots for some spells of a second bloodline, its great.
Empyreal Sorcerer A
It’s a wisdom based sorcerer, if you want to use this for another wisdom based divine caster and go Mystic Theurge this is a decent choice, but fine as your main class as well.
Overwhelming Mage A
You get +4 spell pen bonus as you level up, with lots of spell resistance enemies this might be worth it.
Sage Sorcerer S
Int based sorcerer, you get some absolutely insane bonuses to your spells and metamagic.
Better at finding traps and you get some more specialized bonus feats.
Sylvan Sorcerer S
You get an animal companion but you are forced to take a sylvan bloodline, and you get some decent bloodline spells, incredible class.
Nine Tailed Heir B
You get some minor abilities that quickly get outdated, it’s okay but you give up a lot. You must be a kitsune to pick this class.
You get full martial feats like a paladin or fighter, but you are more cleric sided, you get buffs to your weapons and armor, and can choose blessings for buffs, utilities, and damage, lots of bonus feats for greater combat choices, think this as a more cleric version of a paladin, great class.
Champion of the Faith B
You lose your weapon buff for a smite, but the big note is that to make your smite good you need lots of cha so this will stretch your stats thin.
Cult Leader A
You give up your channel energy and a bunch of you combat feats for some sneak attack dice, this is a great boost to your damage but you do lose both your heavy and medium armor proficiencies along with your martial weapon proficiencies besides some light weapons. Go dex and shred your enemy to pieces.
Give up your combat feats for some defensive feats and a dispel ability, needing to dispel in this game is rare because you have to beat spell resistance as well as the dispel roll, it’s okay.
Feral Champion C
Lose a blessing and can shapeshift, the problem is you lose you armor buffs so you are squishy, and don’t make great use of your sacred weapon feats unless you choose the weapons of your animal form which makes it so you don’t benefit from it always so it’s a lose lose.
Every turn you can do an aoe burst to damage evil outsiders, its 2d6 once per turn which is okay but you lose your armor bonuses, channeling, and fervor abilities
Lots of bonuses to your shield, and the shield bash ability, problem is that getting additional bashes require a lot of dex that might not be worth it, still pretty good.
Classes – Witch, Wizard
Lots of options to build this class just like the shaman, your patron adds spells to your lists, and you have a ton of hexes for whatever you want to focus on, a great caster class with lots of versatility.
Elemental Witch B
You give up a lot of hexes for a scaling elemental ray ability, which is decent, you are trading hex spamming for ray spamming, it’s your call if it’s worth it.
You gain a claw attack and some scaling strength bonuses, okay if you want a strength melee witch.
Hex Channeler B
Give up one hex for channel energy which is a pretty good but simple trade.
Leyline Guardian S
Spontaneous spell caster, you can boost the caster level of your spells at the cost of being staggered if you fail a fortitude save, which is a negligible penalty if your spells succeed and win the fight for you because of the boosted power, you are a caster class and this makes you spells stronger, incredibly powerful.
Stigmatized Witch A
Functions like an Oracle with a curse but no revelations, it gains and cast spells like one too and is pretty good.
Witch of the Veil B
Stealth and invisible based witch, it’s okay until you run into the part of the game where lots of enemies have true sight.
The most versatile and powerful caster, can break the game in typical fashion, absolutely incredible.
Arcane Bomber A
You get scaling bombs like an alchemist but get 4 opposition schools to choose, think of this as a caster focused alchemist, great at what it does.
Elemental Specialist S
At level 1 you can transform the energy type of any spell you cast into the type you chose, this allows you to go all in for feats of one type of element and get the benefit for every damage spell you have, absolutely insane and is among the best damage caster subclasses.
Exploiter Wizard A
You gain an arcane reservoir like an arcanist, but slower progression of exploits, good to boost your DC or spell level and a few utility options.
Scroll Savant S
You can use any scroll with your int to cast them and use your own spell level when you cast them, buy or craft a ton of spell level scaling scrolls and have infinite casting of spells more or less as long as you can afford it.
Spell Master A
You get a lot more uses of Arcane Bond so you can adapt to any need throughout the day.
Thassilonian Specialist A
You give up two spell classes entirely for two bonus slots of one spell class, if you want to super specialize this is for you, Gluttony is a great pick if you want to go for Mystic Theurge.
Necromancy specialist, can spend your hp to boost the DC of your necro spells, it’s a little weak early game until you get summon skeleton, which are buffed by this class, a great match for the lich mythic path. You must be a Dhampir to choose this class.
Preface: Part of the scoring is how many hoops you have to go through to access the class, most of these are good with just 4-6 levels but you can still go a full 10 and be fine, just do what you wish!
Arcane Trickster S
Get ray spells and use your sneak attack for each ray, ranged trap disarming, one of the most powerful single target classes in the game and will blow up bosses.
You have to do a lot of work to get the death attack ability to even start, but even after all the work you do sneaking up and passing perception checks (that can scale to insane levels) they still might just pass the DC and survive, and once you do you are in the middle of your enemies most likely as a squishy character, in addition to this the enemies you do want to assassinate are bosses that typically detect you for cutscene purposes, so it might not even work on the enemies you really want to assassinate.
Stalwart Defender B
You get +1 AC and defensive stance that gives +2 AC, pretty good for 1 point, the further you go along the harder it is to get hit, amazing tank.
Eldritch Knight A
Progress your arcane spellcasting while getting combat feats, great way to get your full arcane caster into some heavy armor and still keep progressing spells.
Dragon Disciple S
If you want to go full dragon disciple for dragon form and various abilities, go for it, but what this class gives you is the trade of 1 level of spellcasting progression in exchange for +2 AC, +4 strength, a bite attack, and a breath weapon and you go back to your original class, 4 levels is the bulk of the major bonuses from this but if you want dragon form go for it.
A lawful version of a paladin with a smite of its own, various abilities, and lots of defensive bonuses, a great class against all these demons if you are lawful but don’t want to be a paladin.
Mystic Theurge S
You progress your divine and arcane spellcaster classes together as this one, this gives you the full list of buffs and control spells, what makes this so good is that if you go lich or angel you can get arcane or divine lists by adding your mythic class level to your spellcasting level and cheat the system so you get a full 20/20 arcane/divine caster and totally break the game.
You add your duelist level to damage and Int bonus to AC (this stacks with sword saint), you get some bonus abilities for damage and defenses but it’s okay in the end.
Aldori Swordlord B
Lots of bonuses towards persuasion of enemies, defensive parries and critical nullifications, but is it worth it going for more fighter feats? Your call.
Student of War B
Lots of skill bonuses and a versatile bonus ability against enemies, but it’s a lot of work for not a big payout, the only major note is that you can replace your dex with int for your AC which is pretty unique.
Hellknight Signifer A
Become a master of armored spellcasting with some decent bonuses, free true seeing, a great class to tank up your caster.
You break feat or spell progression with this, though probably only worth 3-5 levels in because you can only select each feat once, but when you pick one of the 9 secrets, you can pick any wizard spell and add it to your spellbook, and repeat the same for the other casters, another good use is to use the combat feat and get Improved critical or any other super powerful combat feats for your favorite weapon, absolutely insane and can break the game if you are a caster.
Winter Witch A
You get really good with cold spells, for damage and DCs, lots of great choices and if you picked a shaman or witch subclass with less hexes and your class bonuses early, you can cheat the system and get a lot of extra hexes.
Items of Note
One major choice you have to make early (as if there aren’t already) is the type of weapon you will use for the majority of your adventure, as you need to spend time and money respecing if you find a weapon you really want to use, the items listed below are some good weapon you will find within Act 1 or 2 that will be usable for quite a while and/or upgraded later, but if there is a specific weapon you want don’t worry, the game has plenty for sale and found so you can always find something good, and if you can’t there’s also the talking weapon you get in act 1 at the Ancientries and Wonders Shop that can turn into anything, and is upgradable down the line.
- Jinx (Falchion) Crusader’s Camp bought from Wilcer Garms immediate start of Act 2
Radiance (Longsword) End of the Shield Maze at the very start of the game, from completing the button puzzle. This weapon is upgradable through sidequests into a +5 good or evil weapon depending on your choices, it’s this game’s holy avenger.
- Wide Sweep (Scythe) Crusader’s Camp bought from Wilcer Garms immediate start of Act 2
- Wicket Longbow (Longbow) Market Square Act 1
There aren’t a lot of unique dex weapons early but you will get plenty of +1 versions, or you can use your talking weapon to become the one you wanted.
Preface: Most of these are fine for whatever purpose you want, if you don’t really know just pick one for a skill that you will use. I will list ones that are unique or more powerful than the others. Weapon upgrades from backgrounds are Enchantment upgrades and will not stack if you get a magic weapon so skill bonuses or proficiencies are preferable.
This allows you to use your wis instead of cha for persuasion, which can give you a bigger bonus if you are a wis focused class.
Oblate: Martial Disciple
This gives you the Improved Unarmed Strike feat, which can allow you to get Crane Style without paying a feat tax so you aren’t as penalized using defensive fighting.
You get the ability to craft scrolls when you rest, which can save you some money and give you some extra firepower, this ability is usually locked behind a feat or choosing a specific class
You get the ability to craft potions when you rest, which can save you some money and give you some extra utility, this ability is usually locked behind a feat or choosing a specific class
Street Urchin: Pickpocket
This gives you +2 to initiative, which is half of a feat, and can be focused if you really want to go first in combat.
You will want points in every skill for their use, but I will list them by priority starting from 1 to 11.
In general you will want to put all your points into a few of them rather than spread them out.
If you are melee you should put 3 points in mobility!
If you are fighting defensively which you should be doing for your tank when fighting tough enemies, 3 points of mobility will give you an extra AC that can mean the difference between life or death.
- Knowledge (Arcana)
- Lore (Religion)
- Lore (Nature)
- Knowledge (World)
- Use Magic Devices (You only really need 1 person good at this).