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Barbarian Handbook

Systole

First Post
Inspired as I was by Treantmonk's wizard guide (and more recently, by Stream of the Sky's Witch Handbook), I figured I'd try my hand at a barbarian guide. I would never have thought that this was really necessary, but Ultimate Combat has dumped a bunch of truly subpar options on the table, so I think the newbies out there deserve a warning sign on some of these things.

In terms of classes, barbarians are probably mechanically the simplest. This doesn't make them bad, by any means. I personally consider chopping hordes of goblins into a large pool of chunky, greenish salsa to have a quaint and timeless humor, sort of like the role-playing equivalent of fart jokes. However, if you're really looking to challenge yourself with stealth and sneak attacks and battlefield control, barbarians are not for you.

That said, barbarians offer exceptional role-playing opportunities. You can be the life of your adventuring party. Eventually, your group will need someone to run screaming into a horde of orcs, or to render a dragon flabbergasted by reckless idiocy, or maybe just to kick in a door and smash everything inside into little bitty pieces. THAT'S WHERE YOU SHINE! And outside of combat, you can keep yourself occupied by drinking and punching livestock in the face (in whatever order you'd like), while the rest of the party makes silly Gather Information checks.



Barbarian Tactics

Step 1: Charge the enemy.
Step 2: Hit the enemy really hard with the biggest weapon you can find.
Step 3: Repeat steps 1 and 2 until you (a) win or (b) die.

That's all you need to know, really.



A Note on Rage Powers and Feats

In your career as a barbarian, you will have to make choices in regards to feats and rage powers. If you used Intelligence as a dump stat, you may find these choices overwhelming to the point of shouting things like, "ME NO UNDERSTAND! ME SMASH PUNY ADVANCED PLAYERS GUIDE!"

Here's a helpful guideline to allow you to select the best feat for your barbarian: If it lets you smash monsters better, it's good. If it does not help you smash monsters better, it is bad. Note (and this is the tricky part) that things like doors and tables do not count as monsters. Paizo has put a lot of tricksy rage powers in here which target furniture. These are not worth taking.

The important concept here is, that besides the smashing monsters and smashing furniture abilities, there are a lot of abilities which let you avoid damage. These are almost as useless as the anti-furniture abilities. A barbarian does not win fights by attrition. He wins fights by pounding the ever-loving crap out of everything as fast as possible. If you want to play a barbarian, that the goal you must aspire to.

Now, there is one single exception to this rule: Better Will saves are also good.

Got all that? Fantastic. Let's proceed.
 
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Systole

First Post
Races

Half-Elf: Surprisingly good. You get the human's strength bonus, and the enchantment save bonus makes a happy barbarian. Plus, you can swap out the crappy Skilled racial for the excellent Dual-Minded racial, which gives you a very needed +2 to Will saves. Also, low-light vision and Keen Senses. Yay!

Half-Orc: Strength is excellent, and ferocity is especially good for a barbarian. Darkvision and the alternate favored class bonus of 1 rage are quite good. One the other hand ... half-orc barbarian? Seriously clichè, bro. If you're building a Howler, though, half-orc is the way to go for the +2 Intimidate.

Human: The extra feat is nice, especially if you're doing something complicated, like building a tripper. So is the strength bump. The extra skill point is kind of lost on barbarians. You are a mighty warrior, not a wimpy skill monkey! If you're going Superstitious barbarian, the alternate favored class bonus is stupidly good, easily pushing humans to blue.

Dwarf: No strength bonus, but every thing else lines up pretty well. Also, you can wear medium armor and still move at 30', since for a dwarf, speed is never modified by armor or encumbrance. Alternate favored class of 1 rage is decent. A solid second choice.

Elf: Honestly, less bad than you might think. Still, not great. Elves get a Constitution penalty, which means you're going to have fewer HP than you might want, and 1 less round of rage. At lower levels, the difference between 6 rounds and 7 is a big deal. At higher levels, the difference between, say 15 and 16 rounds of rage is less of an issue. Still, there's nothing optimal here, and the alternate favored class bonus is very, very bad.

Halfling & Gnome: While the idea of a crazy knee-biting barbarian is pretty damn funny, the penalties to strength and movement really kill the effectiveness here.



Archetypes That Don't Completely Suck


Brutal Pugilist - I just don't love this, but if you have your heart set on playing a boxer, it's not completely terrible. Just mostly terrible. Really, just buy a cestus or spiked gauntlet.
Elemental Kin - The bad news is that the ability kind of sucks. The good news is that it sucks less than Trap Sense. If you still have Trap Sense, you might as well pick up this archetype.
Invulnerable Rager - DR in exchange for a losing some AC. Your AC sucks anyway. This is a good pick.
Mounted Fury - If you're going mounted, Blue. Otherwise, no.
Savage Barbarian - The armor bonus is good. The loss of DR is not. Not a good pick overall.
Scarred Rager - The things you give up are some very useful abilities. If you're committed to a Howling barbarian, this might be worth it, but not really, in my opinion.
Totem Warrior - By totem type.
Urban Barbarian - A dip class to make TWF finesse builds less crappy. An interesting idea, but I don't think you'd ever take this to 20th level.




Archetypes That Completely Suck

Armored Hulk - No. This is bad. If you want to have a decent AC, play a fighter. Don't play a class whose core mechanic reduces your AC.
Breaker - An archetype that targets things that don't fight back? Epic facepalm.
Drunken Brute - Extra rage? Yeah, but you're using a move action. Which means less moving, and no full attack actions. As Admiral Ackbar once said, "It's a trap!"
Hurler - No. Fast Movement is your friend. You do not give it up for a crappy range bonus on thrown stuff.
Sea Reaver - This is clearly an archetype for pirate NPCs. It is not for PCs.
Superstitious - Giving up DR for a Perception bonus? No.
Titan Mauler - An awful, awful archetype. Let me sum this up: You can use a giant's dagger as if it were a two-handed sword without penalty. You know what's a better idea? BUYING A FRICKIN' TWO-HANDED SWORD. This would be a good ability if it let you wield oversize (i.e. larger than traditionally two-handed) weapons. But it doesn't. Screw you, Paizo.
True Primitive - An archetype for caveman NPCs. Do not take this.
Wild Rager - If you take a Wild Rager, expect your party to roll you off a cliff while you sleep. This is the single worst archetype in the history of archetypes. I am not exaggerating.
 
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Systole

First Post
The Must-Haves

Clear Mind (Ex) - Will saves are the ones you're most likely to fail, and they're the ones that hurt most to fail. This ability is good enough for me to put it in the must-have category, even after all the bad things I said about defensive rage powers.
Come and Get Me (Ex) - Absolutely overpowered. Take this at level 12.
Fearless Rage (Ex) - Those conditions suck and target Will. This gets blue for the same reason that Clear Mind does.
Knockdown (Ex) - This is just excellent. Charge 'em, knock 'em down, smack 'em when they get up. For extra barbarian-y goodness, toss in a Strength Surge.
Reckless Abandon (Ex) - This is a perfect, iconic rage power. Every barbarian should have this.
Strength Surge (Ex) - By itself, this is a great power for that extra oomph when you need it. Coupled with Knockdown or Knockback, it is excellent.
Superstition (Ex) - The consensus is that this is a blue. Myself ... I kind of like having my pet wizard being able to cast on me during combat, but I'll submit to the majority vote.
Unexpected Strike (Ex) - Oh, yes. Your barbarian should be built around smacking people in the face. This lets him smack people in the face more. Get this.




The Pretty Good

Animal Fury (Ex) - Decent, and a prereq for a lot of good stuff.
Auspicious Mark (Su) - I may have overrated this, but I'm a big fan of retroactive luck.
Crippling Blow (Ex) - Scales pretty well and helps put the hurt on big nasties.
Disruptive - Disruptive gets weaker at high levels. Still, it's not terrible, and the rest of the tree helps out here.
Eater of Magic (Su) - Definitely tasty. GET IT? TASTY?
Hurling Charge (Ex) - Free attack during a charge. Excellent. Sadly, the prereq is subpar.
Increased Damage Reduction (Ex) - Good, but you're generally better off taking offensive powers than defensive powers.
Quick Reflexes (Ex) - Extra AoOs are good. If you dumped Dexterity or there's a tripper in the party, could be a blue.
Sharpened Accuracy (Ex) - This is a good power, assuming you got Surprise Accuracy. Which you shouldn't have.
Spell Sunder (Su) - Very good. Lets you peel away the defenses of magic baddies.
Spellbreaker - If you're going this route, decent.
Sprint (Ex) - A x3 charge is a great way to close in that first round. This is better than Swift Foot, because this gives you a lot extra during those times when you really need it, rather than a little extra which you don't need most of the time.




The Not So Great

Beastial Leaper (Ex) - It's a copy of Spring Attack, which isn't that great anyway. Plus, you shouldn't have wasted o rage power on the terrible prerequisite.
Bleeding Blow (Ex) - It's extra damage, but you should be trying to kill things outright, not letting them bleed out slowly.
Elemental Rage & Greater Elemental Rage (Su) - A little bit of energy damage is really not useful at this level. It isn't multiplied on crits, and a lot of stuff is going to be resistant to whatever type you choose.
Elemental Rage, Lesser (Su) - If you're TWF, maybe this is green. If you're wielding a BFS, it's just not worth the investment.
Good for What Ails You (Ex) - Depends on how tough the status effects you run into are. Generally speaking, barbarians should avoid defensive rage powers.
Internal Fortitude (Ex) - These conditions suck. However, usually they're Fortitude saves, so you shouldn't be failing them too often.
Knockback (Ex) - I'm not a fan of Bull Rushes, but free CMs are fun.
Liquid Courage (Ex) - Not terrible, but you should be getting morale buffs from your cleric.
Mighty Swing (Ex) - By the time you get this, you should be pretty much auto-confirming anyway. It's not that special.
Powerful Blow (Ex) - Great idea, but once per rage sucks.
Renewed Life (Ex) - Negative levels suck, but if you tend to get a lot of them, your cleric is doing something wrong.
Renewed Vitality (Ex) - Ability damage is more common and less avoidable than negative levels. This could almost make it a green, except I wouldn't want to delude anyone into taking Renewed Vigor.
Scent (Ex) - This rates a solid "Meh."
Sunder Enchantment (Su) - Why are you sundering? Just smack the guy in the face.
Surprise Accuracy (Ex) - It's once per rage, it's just an attack bonus, and there's a good chance you have a morale bonus up that this won't stack with.
Swift Foot (Ex) - Not really worth a rage power.
Witch Hunter (Ex) - Not terrible. Not great.




The Flat-Out Terrible

Beastial Climber/Swimmer(Ex) - You have access to better magic than this now. Also, these abilities would be laughable even if you didn't.
Boasting Taunt (Ex) - Goes to green if you're the group's tank. Please don't be the group's tank.
Body Bludgeon (Ex) - Okay, role-playing-wise, I admit it's kind of funny. Mechanically, it's stupid.
Brawler & Greater Brawler - You're not a monk. If you want to punch stuff, put on a cestus or a spiked gauntlet.
Deadly Accuracy (Ex) - So let me get this straight: If you manage to crit on that one special round per rage when you use an underpowered ability, the beastie that you would have killed with a single crit is extra dead. Wow.
Energy Absorption (Su) - So many better things to spend rage powers on.
Energy Eruption (Su) - Did you know that if something is hitting you with an energy type at level 16, there's a better than average chance it's immune to the energy type it's using? Yeah.
Energy Resistance, Greater (Ex) - Not great.
Ground Breaker & Greater Ground Breaker (Ex) - No. Just no. The save doesn't scale. Skip this. Skip this hard.
Guarded Life & Greater Guarded Life (Ex) - Your Fortitude save is already through the roof. Skip.
Guarded Stance (Ex) - You're a barbarian. You hit things. This ability does not help you hit things. If you are the party tank, maybe a green. Please tell me you are not the party tank, though.
Hurling & Greater Hurling (Ex) - Not worth it.
Hurling, Lesser (Ex) - Funny, but not worth. However, does lead in to Hurling Charge, which is decent.
Lethal Accuracy (Ex) - See Deadly Accuracy.
Low-Light Vision (Ex) - Low-light vision is nice, but if you need it, you probably need it when you're out of rage too.
Night Vision (Ex) - Darkvision is nice, but if you need it, you probably need it when you're out of rage too.
Overbearing Advance& Overbearing Onslaught (Ex) - Overrun is generally a pretty bad CM. You want to smack things in the face, not run past them.
Perfect Clarity (Ex) - Only worth it if your GM is sending hordes of rampaging gnome illusionists at you. I've only had that happen once.
Primal Scent (Ex) - Not worth it.
Raging Climber/Leaper/Swimmer (Ex) - All of these are laughably bad.
Reflexive Dodge (Ex) - Rolling Dodge is bad. But spending a rage power on Reflex saves? Terrible. Reflex saves are the saves that hurt the least.
Renewed Vigor & Regenerative Vigor (Ex) - Terrible. You're not a healer. That guy in the dress standing behind you is the healer. Or possibly the wizard. Assuming he is the healer, you should let him do his job while you smack things in the face. You'll both be happier that way.
Rolling Dodge (Ex) - You know what you do to archers? You run up and smack them in the face. Spending a rage power to avoid projectiles is so not worth it.
Smasher (Ex) - Wha ... what? A rage power to help you smite defenseless objects? Are you kidding me, Paizo? Are you $#%&ing kidding me?!? YES ... YESSSSS! I SHALL BE THE KING OF SMASHING FURNITURE AND OTHER INANIMATE OBJECTS! COFFEE TABLES THE WORLD OVER SHALL TREMBLE AT THE MENTION OF MY NAME!
Staggering Drunk (Ex) - Any rage power that includes "Gain AC" is worthless.



The Conditionally Okay But Mostly Not Good

Energy Resistance (Ex) - This can be green if you fight the same type of energy all the time. Generally speaking, you're better off with rage powers that let you hit harder.
Flesh Wound (Ex) - If you're an Invulnerable Rager and/or have mastered rage hopping (see below), this is green, possibly even blue. Otherwise, I can't really rate this above orange, and I really think it's fairly red.
Ghost Rager (Su) - You should have a magic weapon by level 6. If your GM is stiffing you on loot, or you're in an campaign where you fight undead 80% of the time, maybe this gets an orange or green. If you're going the human/Superstitious route, this bumps your Touch AC to ridiculous levels, and might rate as high as blue.
Inspire Ferocity (Ex) - Okay, this is a toughie because it's super situational. Is your group made of melee? Maybe it's worth it. Generally not, though.
Intimidating Glare (Ex) - Didn't you dump Charisma? If you're building a Howler barbarian, this is a blue. Otherwise, red.
Moment of Clarity (Ex) - It's a must-have if you're going Rage Prophet, which you shouldn't, because Rage Prophet is a terrible class. Otherwise, this is very deeply red.
No Escape (Ex) - How often do foes use the withdraw action? I've only seen it once, I think. If your GM is a maneuver monkey, then maybe this is green.
Roaring Drunk (Ex) - Not great unless you're going for a Terrifying Howl build (in which case it's green) or you run into lots of stuff that causes fear (in which case it's orange).
Roused Anger (Ex) - This depends on whether your GM is sneaky. If your fights are straightforward, this is red. If your GM likes to play gotcha, this might go as high as green, but probably not.
Terrifying Howl (Ex) - You really have to build to this to make it work. If you're building a Howling barbarian, then it's blue. Otherwise, it's red.
 
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Systole

First Post
Feats



Your First Level Feat

Power Attack: I can’t rate this higher than blue, but … it’s higher than blue. It's ultra-blue. There is no legit barbarian build that doesn’t take this as its 1st level feat.



The Must-Haves

Combat Reflexes: This drops a bit if you’re not with someone who can feed you AoOs or if you dump-statted Dex. It’s still quite good regardless.
Furious Focus: Negates the Power Attack penalty.
Improved Initiative: Going first. Enough said.
Improved Trip, Greater Trip, Felling Smash: If you’re feeling like smashing things in the face is no longer good enough, then tripping is adds a bit of fun.
Iron Will: Failing Will saves is the worst thing ever.
Step-Up: You’re in the caster’s/archer’s face, right? When they 5-foot step, follow them and mess them up.



The Pretty Good

Dodge: If you have a spare feat, this is not a bad grab. Otherwise, stick to smash-the-enemy-in-the-face feats.
Nimble Moves: Few things are as annoying as a small shrubbery in the way of a perfectly good charge. This allows you to hurdle said shrubbery. In your face, pesky plant life!
Toughness: You’ve already got d12 for HP. On the other hand, you’re getting hit a lot. Kind of a toss-up.



The Not So Great

Acrobatic Steps: If you need to clear 20’ a round of difficult terrain, you should probably have Fly cast on you. Situationally useful, yes … but there are better choices for a feat.
Blind-fight: Not utterly terrible, but there are better choices.
Cleave: Cleave is a bad feat. It’s great at maybe first and second level when you’re fighting hordes of goblins, but it’s a waste by the time you hit 5th. If you’re a Fighter and can swap stuff around, this is a good early feat. Sadly, if you’re a barbarian, all this does is make you a superstar at 3rd level.
Drunken Brawler: Useful with drinking archetypes. Otherwise, no.
Endurance: If you’re a medium armor dwarf barbarian, this is a little better. Otherwise, you’re in light or no armor and this isn’t worth it.
Fleet: You’ve got a great move already. This is probably not helpful.
Improved Critical: Okay, if you’re a half-orc with a falchion, this is better than orange. But otherwise, you’re better to go for straight damage than relying on crits.
Hammer the Gap: Not enough to be worth a feat.
Lunge: Situationally useful.
Mobility: It’s rare you’ll need to tumble except when you go after stuff with reach. Even then, tumbling is still so terrible as to be not worth it.
Quick Draw: Nah. You’re not switching weapons. You’re pulling the BFS and hitting as much as possible with it. Occasionally, this is worth it during surprise rounds. Otherwise, no. If you’re TWF, green/blue.
Spring Attack: A pretty bad feat unless you’re playing with reach weapons.
Stand Still: Too situational.
Weapon Focus: More useful if you’re TWF. If you’re BFS, this is a minor addition to you damage output.



The Flat-Out Terrible

Following Step: Step Up is great. Following Step is overkill.
Great Fortitude & Lightning Reflexes: You’ve got a great Fortitude save already, and Reflex saves are usually just about HP. Neither of these is worth taking.
Improved Unarmed Strike etc.: You’re not a monk. If you feel a burning need to punch stuff, wear protection. By which I mean, a cestus.
Monkey Lunge: Lunge is not bad, but this is an AC feat. Skip it.
Tantrum: So you took a gnome barbarian … and now you have a choice of this terrible feat. Don’t do it.
Wind Stance: Yeah, you move a lot, but this is an AC feat. Skip it.



The Conditionally Okay But Mostly Not Good

Combat Expertise: Useful if you’re going to play with Improved Trip. Otherwise, what the heck do you care about AC?
Intimidating Prowess: For Howler barbarians.
Ride-by Attack, Spirited Charge, Trample: For Mounted Fury barbarians.
Vital Strike: I am staying out of the Vital Strike argument. If you’re thinking about it, do your own research.
 
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StreamOfTheSky

Adventurer
Nice, I'll try to read it over once my game's over tonight.

Just make sure you cover the art of "Rage Hopping" -- getting immunity to fatigue and then going into a new rage each round to make 1/rage powers into 1/round powers. Most still suck, but that mechanic is probably the main reason to not just play a Fighter, IMO.

Barbarian issues to me usually boil down to:
1) The class is so narrow in what you can do. Maybe one is a 2H power attacker, another is a 2H power attacker that scares people by yelling alot. Another is a 2H power attacker that's even tougher than a normal barb... You see where I'm going here. Gets a little bland.

2) There doesn't seem to be a great reason to stay in the class past level 12 (the level you can get Come and Get Me, the best rage power evar!). The 20th level capstone uber sucks, Tireless Rage can be had by ECL 9 w/ a 1 level Oracle dip... Just not much to offer at the higher levels.
 

Starbuck_II

First Post
Archetypes That Completely Suck

Armored Hulk - No. This is bad. If you want to wear armor, play a fighter. Don't play a class whose core mechanic reduces your armor class.
Titan Mauler - An awful, awful archetype. Let me sum this up: You can use a giant's dagger as if it were a two-handed sword without penalty. You know what's a better idea? BUYING A FRICKIN' TWO-HANDED SWORD. This would be a good ability if it let you wield oversize (i.e. larger than traditionally two-handed) weapons. But it doesn't. Screw you, Paizo.
I disagree here.

Armored Hulk: makes you faster in med/heavy armor than a normal Barbarian in Med Armor(Barbarian can't use Fast Movement in Heavy and only 30 feet in Med, Armored Hulk ends up 35 ft in Med/Heavy armor). And you don't lose any AC (are you talking about Dex mod?).
Yes, a Barb in Light armor is 5 ft faster than a Armored Hulk in Med/Heavy.

Titan Mauler: Ranged gun wielding Barbarians can use Gigantic guns with the ability without a hit penalty, but otherwise no one should use this,. Although Evade Reach ability is nifty.

You didn't mention awsome totems:
Beast Totems improves your base natural armor in rage (still able to be improved by Barkskin/Amulet of NA). Plus, you have a bite attack as a 6th attack when full attack (rarely hits but doesn't hurt your to hit rate). And Pounce did I mention pounce bcause you can charge and full attk.
Dragon Totem improves your DR in Rage (besides resistance to 1 energy isn't bad to have). The wings are iffy at best but the DR rocks.

Feats:
Tiger Style/Tiger Pounce are pretty good. They let you negate hit penalty for all attacks (not just 1st) by reducing AC for a round.
Dipping Monk for Tiger Pounce is a better idea (Master of Many Styles) though.
Extra Rage Power is a godsend. More Rage powers. Take it a few times is good.
 
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Systole

First Post
Armored Hulk: Rage reduces your AC. If you want to have a decent AC, don't play a barbarian.

Titan Mauler: I will think about this ... although I can't imagine why you'd take a clearly Strength-based class and use a firearm.

I haven't got to totems yet. The guide is still a work in progress.

You can't be a monk/barbarian. Barbarians can't be lawful. Monks can't be non-lawful.

Extra Rage Power is ... interesting. I did miss grading that, and I'll put it in tomorrow. Although I'm not sure I'd call it a godsend. Feats are generally more powerful than rage powers, so I'd usually rather have the feat.
 

StreamOfTheSky

Adventurer
Tiger Style/Tiger Pounce are pretty good. They let you negate hit penalty for all attacks (not just 1st) by reducing AC for a round.
Dipping Monk for Tiger Pounce is a better idea (Master of Many Styles) though.
Kinda hard to dip a lawful only class as a Barbarian. :)
Unarmed Fighter archetype is certainly an option, though.
 

StreamOfTheSky

Adventurer
Flesh Wound (Ex) - ...why?
Ok, see, I assume a barbarian is Rage Hopping by mid-levels, maybe you don't and that's affecting your ratings. But i have to completely disagree here. Even without hopping, dropping damage from an attack by half once per combat is a decent ability. But with hopping? Holy Crap! Once every single round you can ignore half the damage from an attack! And the other half becomes non-lethal. Which the Invulnerable Rager archetype gives double DR against! So at Barbarian 10, when you pick up this ability, your Invulnerable Rager is dropping the damage from any one effect by half once per round and having DR 10 against whatever nonlethal damage remains. Flesh Wound is IMO only behind Come and Get Me in terms of best Rage Powers.

Some other notes on rage powers:

I like Spirit Totem. Since the extra attack isn't being made by you, you get some leeway and can apply it at the start, end, or middle of your attack routine, however you see fit. You also can get it when not full attacking. I found that to be handy....

Knockdown is once/rage. Not an issue if hopping, but if you aren't, it uber sucks.

Superstitious is IMO an all or nothing path. Either you embrace it completely, use the human favored class option, get Ghost Rager, and be nearly untouchable by magic... Or you avoid it completely. Going half-assed just means mediocre benefits with potentially very annoying drawbacks. On that note...

Ghost Rager is awesome is going all-out. Your touch AC can get very obscene.

Intimidating Glare and Terrifying Howl are very good if you're going that route. I know you said as much, but I think you should rate the rage powers assuming builds that would benefit from them are the ones taking said powers. Barbarian is a very good intimidation build, especially if Cornugon Smash feat is available.
 

Systole

First Post
I'll reread Flesh Wound. I feel like I didn't read it right the first time. Same with Ghost Rager.

Will take your advice into consideration when I get around to totem powers. I wanted to separate them out.

Personally, I'm a fan of Knockdown, even at 1/combat. There's usually one BBEG per fight that really needs a trip, and the barbarian is usually the one who charged into his face. I'll consider downgrading to green, but you would have to work real hard to convince me to put it lower than that.

I'll put in rage-hopping as an addendum. I don't generally assume rage-hopping, because I feel the tactic is a bit underhanded. I'm only familiar with getting into it through Lame Oracle. Is there another way?
 

StreamOfTheSky

Adventurer
Lame Oracle is the easiest. Horizon Walker requires a 3 level deviation from Barb and a worthless feat, but doesn't cost you any BAB and also makes you immune to exhaustion. Both gain fatigue immunity at ECL 9. Of course, you might be tempted to dip Unbreakable Fighter 1 if going the Horizon Walker route.
The simplest but least useful method is to...just wait for Barbarian 17. Yup, even a core only Barbarian by RAW gets to eventually engage in this tactic, far from some sort of sneaky splat-abusing trick.

And I disagree it's underhanded. It would be if the 1/rage powers were really strong. But as you can see, they're really really not. I wouldn't bother ever taking any except Flesh Wound if it weren't for hopping.
 

Starbuck_II

First Post
You can't be a monk/barbarian. Barbarians can't be lawful. Monks can't be non-lawful.
Yeah, you totally can. Parthfinder allows you to change alignments. Who cares if you are an ex-Monk, you lose nothing.

Start Monk (go Non-lawful), go Barbarian (party)
Obviously a Str based Monk when you are a level 1 Monk. You can go 2 for evasion if that is your thing though.
If game starts at 3rd level even better: Ex-Monk 2/Barbarian 1 is all kinds of awesome.

Simple ways to stop being lawful: forget this mediating crap, stop keeping your word, be dishonorable, etc.
You do have find out what lawful is to your DM (this will vary), but the game allows you to change alignments.
 

Systole

First Post
Ok, see, I assume a barbarian is Rage Hopping by mid-levels, maybe you don't and that's affecting your ratings. But i have to completely disagree here. Even without hopping, dropping damage from an attack by half once per combat is a decent ability. But with hopping? Holy Crap! Once every single round you can ignore half the damage from an attack! And the other half becomes non-lethal. Which the Invulnerable Rager archetype gives double DR against! So at Barbarian 10, when you pick up this ability, your Invulnerable Rager is dropping the damage from any one effect by half once per round and having DR 10 against whatever nonlethal damage remains. Flesh Wound is IMO only behind Come and Get Me in terms of best Rage Powers.
I'm still not loving Flesh Wound. I admit it's better than red (especially with Invulnerable Rager/rage hopping), but you're still going to be eating the big attacks that you can't make Fort saves against (40+ damage kind of stuff). The way I see it, you're beating the small attacks that don't really matter, but it doesn't help you much when the $#!% hits the fan. I'll move it to grey and puts some caveats down.

Sorry if I forgot to mention about Tireless Rage at level 17. I did know that. I didn't know about Horizon Walker, though.
 

StreamOfTheSky

Adventurer
It can't negate big hits, no, but you should be pumping your fort save crazy high, enough to near guarantee moderate hits can be resisted. So you use it on the medium impacts, and reduce say...20 damage per round on average, between the halving and DR = barbarian level from Invulnerable Rager. Since your AC is garbage, you're probably getting hit every round, so you can use this.

Say the fight lasts 3 rounds. You just shrugged off 60 damage (and a bunch more became nonlethal and will freely get healed along with a corresponding amount of lethal damage when the CLW wand goes 'round). I...think that's pretty darn good. The longer the fight goes, the better it is. Barbarians usually suffer in the realm of staying power, so it's nice for that, too.


Also, I like the deep blue sky color you switched to. Regular blue is painfully hard to read on this forum, I was thinking of switching to a new shade for my own guide, might use that, it looks very nice against the black background.
 

Gorgoroth

First Post
more ragey goodness

Hi all, so we just started playing a new campaign and I'm playing an invulnerable rager barb. We just turned level 2, and I took superstitious which has already helped a ton. We have an Oracle of Life who life linked with me before I was raging and we believe the ability still works. This combined with DR 1 has helped a lot.

Question to the forum:

Exhausted state replaces Fatigued, right? Or does it add on top of it? In the wording of Roused Anger rage power, it says you can enter a rage even when fatigued but when you leave you are exhausted instead. If you're immune to exaustion, one level of Horizon Walker / desert plus Roused anger should get you rage hopping by level 6, correct?

I'm a little fuzzy on why anyone would even bother with any of this stuff if Allnight herb works. Does it? Or did they clarify it doesn't allow a barbarian to circumvent the fatigued condition, but just its effects.
 

StreamOfTheSky

Adventurer
Hi all, so we just started playing a new campaign and I'm playing an invulnerable rager barb. We just turned level 2, and I took superstitious which has already helped a ton. We have an Oracle of Life who life linked with me before I was raging and we believe the ability still works. This combined with DR 1 has helped a lot.
You don't have to save against effects that were already affecting you before you entered your rage, no. Only new spells cast on you.

Exhausted state replaces Fatigued, right? Or does it add on top of it?
I guess you could say it "replaces." It's a higher level of fatigue, basically. You usually hit fatigued before reaching exhausted, and normally have to go back to fatigued from exhausted before you can get to "no status ailment".

In the wording of Roused Anger rage power, it says you can enter a rage even when fatigued but when you leave you are exhausted instead. If you're immune to exaustion, one level of Horizon Walker / desert plus Roused anger should get you rage hopping by level 6, correct?
Well, for starters, HW requires 6 geography ranks, you you can even enter it until level 7...

Yes, it looks like Roused anger + HW 1 will let you rage hop. You will still be fatigued (but that will be suppressed while actually raging), and each time you jump out, Roused Anger will make you exhausted for a stupidly long time, then Terrain Mastery (Desert) kicks in and turns the exhaustion into fatigue, which Roused Anger then allows you to enter rage despite having...and the cycle repeats from there.
I really wouldn't do that unless you're sure being able to rage hop 2 levels earlier than you could otherwise is so important (like...game will end before you reach ECL 9, or will end shortly after that point). Roused Anger is a horrible rage power that becomes completely obsolete once you get fatigue immunity or pick up tireless rage, before then you're looking at easily close to an hour of exhaustion (fatigue w/ HW) after the fight, which sucks.

I'm a little fuzzy on why anyone would even bother with any of this stuff if Allnight herb works. Does it? Or did they clarify it doesn't allow a barbarian to circumvent the fatigued condition, but just its effects.
I have no idea what allnight herb is?
If you want another way to rage hop early, I recently noticed this gem on the 1st level Bard spell list (ie, 50 gp as a potion!): Invigorate - Pathfinder_OGC
 

Qik

First Post
Kind of late to the party, but props, Sys; kind of fun to see Daylily as reflected through this prism.
 

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