Friday, September 10, 2010

Pathfinder Inquisitor: cool, oh wait, ok yeah, cool

Over the last few weeks, I have had an opportunity to assess the new base classes in the Pathfinder Advanced Player's Guide. My favourite is without doubt, the Alchemist. It offers interesting new capabilities to the game instead of simply repackaging options that already exist from other classes. I am also intrigued by the Summoner class, but I will reserve judgement until I see one in play. The Witch seems to be a fairly effective choice. The hex abilities are decent and the spell selection is nice, but I can't get past the feeling that the Witch is just a slightly different version of the Sorcerer with a bit of healing ability thrown in. A playable class, but not one that inspires me. The Oracle has a similar problem, it's a Sorcerer except it uses divine magic rather than arcane. Again, playable, but not especially interesting. The Cavalier is simpy boring, a fighter who rides a horse. The class features of the Cavalier are nowhere near as useful as the bonus feats of the actual Fighter class.

That leaves the Inquisitor class. This one has a lot to recommend it. The Judgment class feature is excellent and useful in a lot of different situations. There are lots of skills and lots of nice utilitarian capabilities like Track and Monster Lore. The true killer ability of the class, however, is Bane. The inquisitor can, as a swift action, imbue his weapon with the bane special ability, selecting whatever creature type he wants. Damn! He can even change the creature type as a swift action. The only restriction is that the ability can only be used for a number of rounds per day equal to the inquisitor's level. Still, that's awesome and at 12th level, the Greater Bane class feature doubles the bonus damage. The Inquisitor even has a unique feature called Stalwart. It's sort of like Evasion, but it applies to spells that require a Fort or Will save instead. A spell like disintegrate, which still causes damage with a successful Fort save, would instead do no damage if the saving throw was made. Yet, despite all this juicy goodness, I had one of those "aw hell!" moments when I noticed the Inquisitor gets a bunch of teamwork feats. I hate teamwork feats. In my experience, most gamers are lone wolf types. Sure, they can work together if the situation demands it, but they sure as heck aren't going to design their characters with cooperation as the central theme. After all, your teamwork feats are useless if you can't get some other guys in the group to commit to taking them as well. Happily, I noticed the Solo Tactics class feature of the Inquisitor, which allows him to derive benefit from his teamwork feats even if his fellow party members don't have them, as long as the other requirements are met. Since the other requirements are situational and not hardwired into the character design, they are easy to meet. So, with that poison pill thoroughly neutralized, I am happy to put the Inquisitor class near the top of my list of base classes. I still like the Alchemist a bit more, but the Inquisitor rocks. I might even start multiclassing my current cleric character.



Damien said...

Got to say the Inquisitor is the one I'd see myself playing a fair bit. Great flavour and even the spells are good and tool boxey. Perfect for Ravenloft.

Rognar said...

I agree, it has a really good flavour for a gothic horror setting.

sergio v. said...

currently playing a Gestalt Inquisitor/Rogue. Can't wait to have stalwart AND evasion :D. Master said: mmm, it seems i could start throwing dragons now..