Sunday, January 19, 2014

Shanker (Rogue Build)

Shanker
Human Rogue (Knife Master/Scout Archetype)

The Shanker is a dual knife wielding maniac who focuses on damage output. He is surprisingly tough for a rogue, he can match the damage output of most fighters when flanking and has far more skills. He feints or charges when he cannot flank for sneak attack damage, and uses a litany of special abilities to save his skin.


Feats/Rogue Talents

Take the Favored Class bonus to add 1/6 of a rogue talent every level.

1:  Combat Expertise, Two-Weapon Fighting
2:  Finesse Rogue
3:  Dodge
4:  Weapon Training -> Weapon Focus Dagger
5:  Toughness
6:  Resiliency / Offensive Defense
7:  Two Weapon Defense
8:  Combat Trick -> Improved Two-Weapon Fighting
9:   Improved Two Weapon Feint
10: Crippling Attack
11: Step Up
12: Another Day / Feat -> Following Step
13: Step Up and Strike
14: Opportunist
15: Greater Two-Weapon Fighting
16: Redirect Attack
17: Iron Will
18:  Knockout Blow / Feint Expert
19: Great Fortitude
20: Fast Tumble

Attributes

Dexterity>Constitution>Intelligence>Strength>Wisdom/Charisma. The only wrinkle here is that Intelligence should be 13. It doesn't need to be any higher, but it shouldn't be any lower.

Point Buy 15
Str: 10
Dex: 18 (16+2)
Con: 12
Int: 13
Wis: 10
Cha: 10

Point Buy 20
Str: 10
Dex: 18 (16+2)
Con: 14
Int: 14
Wis: 10
Cha: 10

Point Buy 25
Str: 10
Dex: 18
Con: 16
Int: 14
Wis: 10
Cha: 10

As you can seem we haven't really tanked any attributes. Constitution is nice and high, as is intelligence. Strength doesn't need to be too high - an extra one point of damage on each hit is not a big deal. If you can pick up an agile dagger, than Strength doesn't matter at all!

Attribute increases should go into Dex, favored class bonuses should go into hit points.

Skills

Max bluff, as it will allow you to feint. Acrobatics is useful for tumbling and maneuvering. You won't need sneak for in combat stuff, but it is still very useful out of combat. Besides that, just get the usual - perception, disarm device, climbing, anything else you want. We are getting 10 skill points each level, so go nuts!

Traits

Convincing Liar (+1 to Bluff), useful for feinting
Reactionary (+2 Initiative) or Dirty Fighter (+1 Damage when Flanking).


How to Play

Charge right in there. Make sure to get sneak attack every turn. From level 4 on, this shouldn't be a problem: You can feint, flank, or charge. From level 8 on, if you move more than 10 and attack, you get sneak attack. Flanking is still the best though, because it gives you your full-round-attack action.

At level 12 Step Up and Strike (move 10 feet and attack in response to enemy movement) in conjunction with the Scout ability (sneak attack when you move 10 feet) will let you sneak attack on enemy turns.

Still have to watch out for Fortitude and Will saves though!

What He Looks Like at Level...
(20 pt buy, no magic or masterwork items)

Level 2: Attacks at +3/+3, dealing d4 (+d8 on a sneak attack) for each hit.  AC: 18/14/14, 17HP, Saves: 2/7/0.  22 Skill points.

Level 4:  Attacks at +6/+6, dealing d4 (+2d8 on a sneak attack) for each hit.  Sneak attack on a charge.  AC 19/15/14, 31HP, saves: 3/8/1. 44 Skill points.

Level 8:  Attacks at +10/+10/+5/+5, dealing d4 (+4d8 on a sneak attack) for each hit. Sneak attack on a charge or when moving 10 feet.  Step up.  AC 20/15/15 (23/18/15 after sneak attacking), 67HP (75 with resiliency), Saves 4/11/2. 88 Skill Points.

Level 12:  Attacks at +13/+13/+8/+8, dealing d4 (+6d8 and 2 strength damage on sneak attack) for each hit.  Sneak attack on a charge or when moving 10 feet. Step up and strike for a surprise sneak attack on the enemies turn. Another Day to avoid a hit.  AC 20/16/14 (25/21/14 after sneak attacking), 99HP (111 with Resiliency), Saves: 6/13/4.  132 skill points. (DPR: 26 with sneak attack and 1.8 strength damage)

Level 16:  Attacks at +17/+17/+12/+12/+7/+7, dealing d4 (8d8 and 2 strength damage on sneak attack) for each hit. Sneak attack on a charge or when moving 10 feet. Step up and strike for a surprise sneak attack on the enemies turn. Another Day to avoid a hit.  Opportunist to attack on ally's turns. Redirect attack to avoid hits.  131 Hit points (147 with Resiliency), AC 20/17/13 (27/24/13 after sneak attacking), saves 7/16/5. 181 skill points.

Level 20:  Attacks at +20/+20/+15/+15/+10/+10, dealing d4 (10d8 and 2 strength damage on sneak attack) for each hit.  Sneak attack on a charge or when moving 10 feet. Step up and strike for a surprise sneak attack on the enemies turn. Another Day to avoid a hit.  Opportunist to attack on ally's turns. Redirect attack to avoid hits. Can knock out opponents, gains a bonus to feint and a bonus to tumble. 163 Hit points (183 with resiliency), AC 20/17/13 (29/26/13 after sneak attacking), Saves 10/18/8.  220 skill points

34 comments:

  1. Im pretty sure its just a typo that Improved Two Weapon Feint doesnt require Two Weapon Feint.

    goldig

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    1. Do you have an errata or anything to support that?

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    2. http://paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd/ultimateCombat/ultimateCombatFeats.html#improved-two-weapon-feint

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    3. This doesn't look like it requires two-weapon feint.

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    4. it was a typo, it got fixed this year.

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  2. Hey, I was building a Rogue based on Dazzling Display/Shatter Defenses/Violent Display, Dervish Dancing (although it would be better off with an Agile Elven Curved Blade) and with Imp. Criticals... It takes about the same feats, and attacks for +16/+8 for 1d6+11 with Power Attack (and Furious Focus) with a 25% chance of a critical hit, and each Sneak Attack or critical refreshes Dazzling Display... should give it a look! Probably works best with the Thug archetype for Frightening enemies and Scout as a backup for fear-immunes, but I'm using the Sczarni Swindler because I like good Will saves and the Let Fate Decide feature.

    I'm not sure about the math but the average DPR is higher with and without Sneak Attack, basing off 24 AC enemies... and it only gets higher as you stack conditions.

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    1. That sounds great - perhaps I'll build it out and compare. If you have any more information on it, let me know!

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    2. Not much more to add, I am considering these builds:

      - Half-Orc (Toothy): High strength, some Dex, dump intelligence and charisma... Thug/Scout, with this feat/Talent progression: Intimidating Prowess, Weapon Training (Falchion), Power Attack, Ninja Trick->Combat Trick (Dazzling Display), Shatter Defenses, Combat Trick (Violent Display), Furious Focus, Resiliency, Critical Focus, Crippling Strike*, Improved Critical, Feat (Cornugon Smash). This build has the highest damage output thanks to an extra natural attack, but it has less utility in comparison. Probably wants to go for Spring Attack and Whirlwind Attack afterwards.

      Another option is going Human for more Rogue Talents, but you would deal less damage for not having a Natural Attack and Falchion proficiency, and you don't get a +2 Intimidate bonus. (But you do get 3 feats more, basically... You could start TWF with Armor Spikes as a Human.)

      - Halfling (Fleet of Foot, Low Blow, Heirloom Weapon trait for Scimitar proficiency): Also Thug/Scout or Sczarni Swindler for higher Will saves and Bluff, Strength to 13, high Dex and Cha, some Con, with this progression up to 12: Weapon Finesse, Combat Trick (Dervish Dance), Taunt, Weapon Training (Scimitar), Dazzling Display, Ninja Trick->Combat Trick (Shatter Defenses), Power Attack, Offensive Defense, Violent Display, Crippling Strike, Critical Focus, Feat (Improved Critical)... could really use to start going for TWF and use a Bladed Boot, or perhaps its better to go with a small race with a Natural Weapon (all I can think of are Goblins)... the advantage of this build is higher skills for more utility, and the fact that Taunt allows you to Intimidate Large, Huge and Colossal opponents without tanking the penalty (+4 for each size larger than you, so it's better to Intimidate a frigging Cryohydra with a Halfling than a Half-Orc. You deal much less damage... unless you take EWP (Elven Curved Blade) instead of Dervish Dance and wait it out for an Agile ECB, in which case you'll probably be on-par.



      Another option, less damagey but more utility build would be to go Kobold Style into Kobold Groundling and get Improved Trip and Fellish Smash, and then move onto Dazzling Display for higher levels... BUT THEN, WHAT DO YOU DO AGAINST FLYING UNDEAD, HUH?!?!

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  3. Sneak attack d8? What did I miss? Im new to pathfinder system.

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    1. The Knife Master Archetype increases the sneak attack die from d6 to d8. You can find it here: http://www.d20pfsrd.com/classes/core-classes/rogue/archetypes/paizo---rogue-archetypes/knife-master

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  4. How can you use sneak attack on multiple strikes? I thought you could only use it on the first hit.

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    1. You can use it on any hit it qualifies for. If you are flanking for the whole time, invisible, or they are flat footed the whole time then you keep sneak attack for every attack. Improved two weapon feint also works. If you are gaining sneak attack from being stealthed, that often goes away after the first hit, but there are other ways to get the damage.

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  5. Thanks! I should've done some research before I submitted this question. This was very helpful, I'll do more research so I'm fully prepared.

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  6. So I have a question, the build is cool, but I do not understand the need for the two weapon fighting. Why is this taken and how do you get advantage from it?

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    1. You can certainly do it without two-weapon fighting, but I found the build more effective and damaging with it.

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  7. Can you play a Rogue Crit base TWF (Wakizashi) Hobgoblin (anything but human) ? If yes do you have a build for it ? And can it be happening if the Hobgoblin takes the Adopted traits and take the Tiefling traits Arms Master :/

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    1. I would actually advise against focusing on criticaling and sneak attack, as sneak attacks are not multiplied on a crit. A wakizashi is still a great weapon for a rogue, but I wouldn't devote feats and resources to improve criticals. You could alternatively be a ninja instead of a rogue for the wakizashi proficiency.

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    2. Thks ! I'll take a better look on it

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  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  9. Is step up and strike that good? Because it only comes into effect if the enemy takes a 5-foot-step away from you? Would you consider other feats and talents for this build?

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    1. You can definitely choose other feats and talents for this build, but the step up and strike & scout combo is pretty nice.

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  10. I know this is old, but I have a variant of this build you might enjoy. At first level, take a level of Bard (Dervish Dancer) to gain automatic Kukri proficiency, and access to Dancing Lights, Grease, and Silent Image. From there you proceed normally into Knife Master/Scout. As soon as possible, I take either 4 or 6 levels into Shadowdancer, and also 3 levels of Assassin. Beyond this its exactly the same.

    Its basically your shanker build with the ability to create illusions and copies of oneself to further confuse enemies. You can "blink" directly out of sticky situations, or directly behind an opponent that you may otherwise have a tough time landing a sneak attack on. You can also use death-strike, so you can instagib any single enemy you want, and then if you want "blink" out, study another enemy, and instagib them again three rounds later. The increase critical range and non-sneak damage from the Kukris make up for the slight reduction in number of dice per sneak attack.

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    1. Sounds fun! If you write it up I'd be happy to take a look.

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  11. k so fast tumble is a advanced rogue talent unable to be taken at lvl 20 do too that spot being used for a regular rogue talent unless there is a way too swap out the regular for a advanced?

    ninja combat trick combo cant work
    "A rogue cannot choose a ninja trick with the same name as a rogue talent."
    that's core rule book

    http://www.d20pfsrd.com/classes/core-classes/rogue/rogue-talents/paizo---rogue-talents/ninja-trick-ex

    also a link in case i read it wrong otherwise i like your build a lot very unique and clever

    just my thoughts

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    1. upon further review my first inquiry is incorrect but the ninja trick question / statement still stands ?

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    2. Ah, you are right. I'm not sure why I had that actually. Just changed it to the normal combat trick. Thanks!

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    3. another day / following step ? are you taking both somehow or something else ? you need following step to qualify for step up and strike

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    4. We are taking both. We are using our favored class bonus to pick up 1/6th of a rogue talent, so an additional rogue talent every 6 levels.

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    5. so what is that under sorry just trying to figure it ?
      hi understand you get a bonus trick wich is awesome but what trick gives you following step
      you can only take each trick once

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    6. I'm taking the "Feat" talent, which is an advanced talent: http://www.d20pfsrd.com/classes/core-classes/rogue/rogue-talents/paizo---rogue-advanced-talents/feat

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    7. ok thank you for the insight your build is awesome

      could the human alternate racial trait focused study be a good add on too the build?

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    8. Not really, no. This build needs more feats, not more skills.

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