View Full Version : Pathfinder Summoner Archetypes: The Fey Marshal and The Umbral Overseer

2018-05-18, 10:10 PM
Below are two archetypes I wrote up for the Summoner. They are re-flavored versions of the Celestial Commander archetype released by Rite Publishing. These were the result of two players that enjoyed the feel of the Celestial Commander and its role, but didn't care for the theme. The majority of the changes are small ones, and the altered Summoning Mastery abilities borrow from the First Worlder(Fey Marshal) and Shadow Caller(Unbral Commander) archetypes. Enjoy, and any comments are welcome.

Fey Marshal (https://docs.google.com/document/d/11WYB3fZ2TXffxeh0ynZ-qn_pUeryrRCyi8sSxaQBgm4/edit?usp=sharing)

Umbral Overseer (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1PlxblfnGpXIjvKxTwZ7CXJE5vhZ-al1_z21M0Zui09s/edit?usp=sharing)

2018-05-22, 11:36 AM
Lots to parse here, but I'll try my best.

Both Archetypes
Proficiency with medium armor seems unnecessary considering neither archetype really gives the class a more martial bent outside of fluff purposes. Maybe if you also gave some limited martial weapon proficiencies to encourage getting into the fray more?

Getting a Domain in place of an eidolon... I don't know. More spells known is always good, but the real boon of the summoner spells list is that so many spells on it are ridiculously level-discounted, which domain spells usually aren't (some of them are actually higher-level than they would be normally, for that matter), and this version of it doesn't give you more spell slots, which is what the Cleric really cares about. I suppose the additional benefits to your summoned minions over the levels gradually make up for it, but that's a painful price to pay starting off. Also, both archetypes have access to the Tactics subdomain... despite neither having access to the War domain. How does that work? Can you only use that domain if you use the subdomain?

Worth noting that the change to divine spellcasting means that you can use shields without penalty now, aside from non-proficiency interference.

Both archetypes replace eidolon twice, with Domain and again with Augment Summoning. Probably an editing mistake.

Pulse Of Nature/Breath of Night is broken as it currently functions. The rules explicitly say that you can't have more than one instance of the summoner's summon whatever power active at any one time. I'm pretty sure only the Master Summoner can have more than one instance of summoning active at a time, and neither of these archetypes stack with that one. The ability itself is fine, but the wording you're using right now doesn't work.

Soldiers Of Nature/Children Of The Night is cool, but the wording is pretty ambiguous as to how it actually functions. Does it persist until you change your chosen feat(s)? Do you get bonus feats to make use of it or have to account for them in your regular feat progression? If the latter, that's pretty awful, given how feat-starved summoning builds tend to be in the first place. I think it's worth checking out the Inquisitor's Monster Tactician archetype (http://www.d20pfsrd.com/classes/base-classes/inquisitor/archetypes/inquisitor-archetypes-paizo/monster-tactician-inquisitor-archetype/). Their Summon Tactics feature is probably how this ability should work.

Bolster The Troops is a pretty measly bonus even when you get it and will definitely get overshadowed by Inspire Courage at higher levels, though I guess it's something to do if you're out of spell slots. I'd definitely increase the number of THP the ability gives, at least.

Purge Defilers/Spread Infamy is pretty weak for what it does and what you're losing to get it. I'd either increase the damage dice to be equal to HD, increase the range, or both. That'd make up for some of the nuking/controlling power you're giving up by not being able to summon creatures like Bralani and Vrocks.

Paragon Summons is fine, and in-theme with the general ideas of these archetypes.

Voice of Nature/Speaker in the Dark works fine as a capstone, if somewhat less unique than what core summoners get. Worth noting that Voice of Nature is strictly better than Speaker in the Dark in a couple of ways (more immunities and resistances, flat tongues effect is better than being able to speak with anything with a shadow, though the latter's got some mad style points), and that the opposite of profane damage is sacred damage, not holy damage.

Overall, both are good and functional archetypes that just need some tweaking of numbers and wording here and there. Probably not as strong as a core summoner, but that's not strictly a bad thing. Some more specific critiques below:

Fey Marshal
Why is hallow on the list of new spells? Isn't that more of a cleric thing? I'd probably recommend confusion or maybe an illusion spell of some stripe in its place.

Considering this is a fey marshal, the druid-themed domains you get access to are kind of odd. Trickery, at the very least, should probably be on the list. Also, mention of alignment domains is weird considering you don't get access to any.

I've never been a fan of summoner archetypes that swap out summon monster for summon nature's ally, but I guess it makes sense here. Still getting gate as a capstone spell doesn't, though. As I recall, other summoner archetypes that swap out SM for SNA usually substitute in summon elder worm and/or summon froghemoth here in place of gating in outsiders.

Umbral Overseer
Hallow makes even less sense here than it did for the Fey Marshal, especially considering this archetype's unholy flavoring. I'm not sure that the planar ally line really works either. There's plenty of darkness-themed spells spread across the game- fear the sun, polar midnight, the shadow evocation/conjuration line- that would be more suited here.

Only getting Darkness compared to the much more varied spread of domains available to your fey counterpart doesn't sit well with me, even if Darkness is a very good domain. Offering the Void domain as well might be a nice upgrade, especially considering its Dark Tapestry subdomain combos very nicely with your summoning powers.

Shadow summoning is standard for this kind of archetype. I don't have the game knowledge required to parse how much this changes your options overall, though I'd probably say it's a downgrade given the loss in versatility. Whatever. It's still workable.

That's my overall critique. Wow, what a lot of words.