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    Default [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    THE GUIDE

    The Tactician (PFSRD)

    Hello! If you're wondering where the guide went, it's in the link above! Keeping the document synced up with the doc got to be too irritating, so it'll all now just be in one place.

    I'm a GM/Player interested in including Tacticians in my game. What do I need to know about them?

    I'm glad you asked! The Tactician is a Psionic class with a mixture of buffing, crowd control, and teamwork abilities that make them an excellent team player in combat situations. In terms of overall power, I would put them at low tier 2, high tier 3, about in the Sorcerer-Magus area; it's got good class features with a limited but relevant pool of powers to manifest.

    What? Psionics? How do those work?

    Psionic powers are mostly like spells. There are several good guides on the playground explaining them in detail, and you can also read the necessary rules about them for free on the SRD.

    Tiers? You lost me.

    The Tier System for Classes is a shorthand way of comparing the innate power level of different classes. As a quick rundown:

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    Tier 1 characters are extremely powerful, versatile, potentially game-breaking classes. They often have a perfect ability to completely negate the difficulty of an encounter.

    Tier 2 characters are very powerful, but usually not as versatile in their ability to shut down threats completely.

    Tier 3 characters are usually very good at what they're meant to do, but can contribute meaningfully to most encounters the party will face.

    Tier 4 characters are usually good at what they're meant to do, but occasionally face situations where they can only contribute a little to the party.

    Tier 5 characters are often only good at one thing and contribute nothing else to the party; often the one thing they are supposed to be able to do is performed better by many other classes.


    So when I say the Tactician is tier 2-3, I mean that the Tacticain can be very good at many different things, but can't break the game as consistently as a Wizard or Cleric. In a party of a Psion, an Inquisitor, a Psychic Warrior, and a Tactician, the Tactician will be a little behind the Psion, a little ahead of the Inquisitor and the Psychic Warrior.

    If your parties usually consist of a Fighter, a Cavalier, a Gunslinger, and a Monk, the Tactician is probably a little too powerful for your group. If your parties normally consist of a Cleric, a Druid, a Wizard, and a Witch, the Tactician will probably be a little behind. If your parties normally consist of a Sorcerer, an Oracle, a Psion, and a Magus, the Tactician will fight right in.
    Last edited by Novawurmson; 2015-05-23 at 04:49 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CTrees View Post
    Knowledge (local) being trained only, and not a class skill for many classes, means that your average human may well not be able to identify other humans! This may explain the exceptional quantity of half-human hybrids.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

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    Last edited by Novawurmson; 2015-05-23 at 04:43 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CTrees View Post
    Knowledge (local) being trained only, and not a class skill for many classes, means that your average human may well not be able to identify other humans! This may explain the exceptional quantity of half-human hybrids.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

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    Quote Originally Posted by CTrees View Post
    Knowledge (local) being trained only, and not a class skill for many classes, means that your average human may well not be able to identify other humans! This may explain the exceptional quantity of half-human hybrids.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

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    Quote Originally Posted by CTrees View Post
    Knowledge (local) being trained only, and not a class skill for many classes, means that your average human may well not be able to identify other humans! This may explain the exceptional quantity of half-human hybrids.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

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    Quote Originally Posted by CTrees View Post
    Knowledge (local) being trained only, and not a class skill for many classes, means that your average human may well not be able to identify other humans! This may explain the exceptional quantity of half-human hybrids.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Reserved #5!

    Feel free to post now
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    Quote Originally Posted by CTrees View Post
    Knowledge (local) being trained only, and not a class skill for many classes, means that your average human may well not be able to identify other humans! This may explain the exceptional quantity of half-human hybrids.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    It looks interesting. Reminds me of the 3.5 Society Mind class that existed.

    Kind of Warlord (4E) class with psionics.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Is it me or is this class pretty MAD? Int for manifesting, Cha for its tactics, and assuming it intends to use its martial proficiency and average BAB (it is given the proficiencies of a martial character) it will need one of either Str or Dex, and Con's importance stems from there. Two stats for casting(-like abilities?) is a first for PF I think?

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Quote Originally Posted by maysarahs View Post
    Is it me or is this class pretty MAD? Int for manifesting, Cha for its tactics, and assuming it intends to use its martial proficiency and average BAB (it is given the proficiencies of a martial character) it will need one of either Str or Dex, and Con's importance stems from there. Two stats for casting(-like abilities?) is a first for PF I think?
    I was going to bring that up in this section. I was a playtester for the class and argued against them being MAD. Dreamscarred Press pointed out that Pathfinder has two classes that have class features that run off two different stats: The Cleric and the Druid, both of which cast off WIS, but channel energy (Cleric) or wild empathy (Druid) using CHA. Both are 3/4 BAB, d8 full-casters - just like the Tactician.

    I don't think it would be a bad homebrew feat to allow them to cast off CHA or use their strategies based on INT; up to DM approval, though.

    In the end, I recommend CHA and strategies for Frontliners and INT and powers for Controllers.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CTrees View Post
    Knowledge (local) being trained only, and not a class skill for many classes, means that your average human may well not be able to identify other humans! This may explain the exceptional quantity of half-human hybrids.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    May I recommend a small wording change?

    "Fifth wheel" has very strong implications of something that is useless and/or pointless.

    I think replacing that with the phrase "force multiplier" might be closer to what I think you mean - something that has value because it makes other things better.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    This going to take off or is it dead?

    If it isn't "Heed my words and know victory" needs to be a section name.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Started this up on the first day of class, and the day before I started my internship. Still working on it, though XD
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    Quote Originally Posted by CTrees View Post
    Knowledge (local) being trained only, and not a class skill for many classes, means that your average human may well not be able to identify other humans! This may explain the exceptional quantity of half-human hybrids.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Reading through the class at a glance, I would say that it has a Tier 1 or 2 chassis. 9th level Int based psionic powers, a large number of Power Points and Powers known, a variety of different useful and class abilities with varying levels of potency, d8 hit die, medium armor, martial weapons, decent Skills including UMD. In many ways, I think it's overkill.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    I wasn't a big fan of it having 9ths either. I kept thinking "why would I ever be a Psywar when I can be this." But I was paying too much attention to the Vitalist, Exemplar and Aegis by the time I noticed this thing was released.


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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Quote Originally Posted by Person_Man View Post
    Reading through the class at a glance, I would say that it has a Tier 1 or 2 chassis. 9th level Int based psionic powers, a large number of Power Points and Powers known, a variety of different useful and class abilities with varying levels of potency, d8 hit die, medium armor, martial weapons, decent Skills including UMD. In many ways, I think it's overkill.
    Other than better weapons, it is just a revamped version of 3.5's Society Mind though to be less healy and more fighty.
    Granted it is rather Tier 2 possibly.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Quote Originally Posted by maysarahs View Post
    Is it me or is this class pretty MAD? Int for manifesting, Cha for its tactics, and assuming it intends to use its martial proficiency and average BAB (it is given the proficiencies of a martial character) it will need one of either Str or Dex, and Con's importance stems from there. Two stats for casting(-like abilities?) is a first for PF I think?
    Being able to use high scores in different abilities to do different things is different than needing high scores in different abilities to function. As long as a class isn't unplayable or needlessly weak without high scores everywhere (eg. 3e Monk or Paladin), this can even be something of a strength - allowing characters within the same class to fill meaningfully different roles and functions.

    The 3e Cloistered Cleric could be used as an example - high Charisma could allow for a character that uses turning and divine feats to some end, high Intelligence can exaggerate the scholarly aspect by turning the cleric into something of a skillmonkey or knowledge engine, high Dexterity can make a solid base for an archer, high Strength can make for a powerful melee fighter. As long as the Cleric's Wisdom is high enough to cast spells, it's going to be a powerful party contributor regardless of the specific direction of the build.

    In this case, as long as the Tactician has a decent Intelligence, it's a full manifester and - provided its powers list isn't a complete flop - it will have some powerful contributions to make to a party, regardless of its capability in melee, the number of allies in its network or its daily Strategy uses.

    The class sounds interesting, but I think I'll be waiting for it to crop up on the pfsrd before I give it a look.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    1st Update:

    I promise I haven't forgotten about this guide! I've just been absurdly busy. Put a little bit of information up.

    However, I'm hitting a little bit of a roadblock in that the tactician power list and several good feats for them are in the part of the book that is not free to view. I'll probably do suggested races next, since those, at least, are free online already.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CTrees View Post
    Knowledge (local) being trained only, and not a class skill for many classes, means that your average human may well not be able to identify other humans! This may explain the exceptional quantity of half-human hybrids.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    why the foop are strategies based on CHA?

    ...Strategy should be based on WIS.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Actually, raws tactics is Int due to being based on Know:History which covers "wars". Not just historical wars, but "wars" (WotC even acknowledged it in a few places like Red Knight's Paladin sub levels getting it as a class skill and this gets it as a class skill for that reason)
    Last edited by deuxhero; 2012-06-02 at 11:52 AM.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    TURN UNTHREAD

    But seriously, during the playtest, I brought this up. I lobbied for a Wis-focused and a Cha-focused archetype for the Tactician (a la Sage), and it remains a possibility.

    For those who haven't preordered Psionics Expanded, there's some very nice material in the latest releases for the Tactician; the Battle Medic archetype in particular is pretty sweet for those hoping to do a support-Tactician.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CTrees View Post
    Knowledge (local) being trained only, and not a class skill for many classes, means that your average human may well not be able to identify other humans! This may explain the exceptional quantity of half-human hybrids.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Hold on...I just saw the thing about how powers manifested on a collective don't allow saves. Please tell me there isn't something that lets you target enemies into your collective...

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Quote Originally Posted by jaybird View Post
    Hold on...I just saw the thing about how powers manifested on a collective don't allow saves. Please tell me there isn't something that lets you target enemies into your collective...
    There is, but it has a fairly low save, and creatures forced into a collective get saving throws (it works a little differently, I'll wait to post full details until it's on the SRD).
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    Quote Originally Posted by CTrees View Post
    Knowledge (local) being trained only, and not a class skill for many classes, means that your average human may well not be able to identify other humans! This may explain the exceptional quantity of half-human hybrids.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Just as an update, the folks at DSP have put a tentative date for the release of Psioniscs Expanded for July, with the information being put on the PFSRD a few weeks after that. The main difficulty I'm having moving forward with this guide is not wanting to give out more than I should, so once everything's free and open to the public, I'll be able to do more.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CTrees View Post
    Knowledge (local) being trained only, and not a class skill for many classes, means that your average human may well not be able to identify other humans! This may explain the exceptional quantity of half-human hybrids.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Update: I'm working on a much larger guide to Psionics Expanded in general, so I'm planning to scuttle this thread entirely in favor of a Google Doc to consolidate the information. I'll post a link to the larger project in the coming weeks.

    Edit: Also, Psionics Expanded has been fully released!
    Last edited by Novawurmson; 2012-08-03 at 11:08 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CTrees View Post
    Knowledge (local) being trained only, and not a class skill for many classes, means that your average human may well not be able to identify other humans! This may explain the exceptional quantity of half-human hybrids.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    So, I've been trying to figure out how I'd want to build a Tactician/Warder Awakened Blade, and I've found great guides on the martial maneuver part of this whole build, well, the Warder, anyway, but this is really the only Tactician guide that I've been able to find, and it sucks. The Tactician stuff is all over the pfsrd, so there's no reason why you shouldn't be able to finish this. You mentioned that you've been working on a google docs version of this, which would be awesome. Do you have a link? I'd really love to read more on this class, as I think it has some awesome flavor and potential for some fun characters.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Wise fwom youwe gwave!

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Quote Originally Posted by jaybird View Post
    Hold on...I just saw the thing about how powers manifested on a collective don't allow saves. Please tell me there isn't something that lets you target enemies into your collective...
    As an assistant in making this guide, I can tell you that there is. The metapsionic feat Shared Power allows you to use any power you can manifest on yourself on another member of your collective. This means slapping Null Psionic Fields on top of opposing casters is very plausible (warning: people get REALLY angry when you use this on them). Another one of my favorites is casting T'Nail's Ardent Legion with the BBEG as the target.
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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Quote Originally Posted by Thealtruistorc View Post
    As an assistant in making this guide, I can tell you that there is. The metapsionic feat Shared Power allows you to use any power you can manifest on yourself on another member of your collective. This means slapping Null Psionic Fields on top of opposing casters is very plausible (warning: people get REALLY angry when you use this on them). Another one of my favorites is casting T'Nail's Ardent Legion with the BBEG as the target.
    Hey, as an assistant in making this guide, do you have any idea why it's stalled for so long? The original reasoning of it not being available for free doesn't work anymore. Also, finally, what do you know about the google doc version of this guide? Is it just as incomplete, or is there more to this? Seriously, getting really frustrated, because everywhere I look for guides on the Tactician, this is the only one that comes up, and it sucks for being so incomplete.

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Nova is, unfortunately, a bit busy these days.
    There was something here and in the avatar box, and there will eventually be again. I just need to figure out what I want...

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    Default Re: [PF] The Chess Master: A Tactical Guide to the Tactician

    Quote Originally Posted by Ilorin Lorati View Post
    Nova is, unfortunately, a bit busy these days.
    Tell me about it :P

    Pretty much all of my time for Pathfinder-related stuff is going to Path of War these days. I have so many unfinished guides and projects...the only one that's really in a good state right now is the Aegis one (the Barbarian one is getting pretty outdated).

    The Google Doc is in much better shape than the GitP version - so much so that I'm considering just deleting the stuff on GitP and leaving a note that says "Here's a link to the Doc."

    I actually have some time off coming up with Memorial Day. What are the primary things the Tactician guide needs to make it usable for you? If I'm lucky, I'll try to have an update by the middle of next week going over those things.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CTrees View Post
    Knowledge (local) being trained only, and not a class skill for many classes, means that your average human may well not be able to identify other humans! This may explain the exceptional quantity of half-human hybrids.

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