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    Question [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Hey all,

    Just wondering about options for a gish that gets a good amount of skills/skill points?

    I guess the most straight forward option would be a Cloistered Cleric with DMM Persisted Divine Power, but I'm looking for options that don't rely on persisted spells, if possible.

    Ideally BAB +16/9ths by ECL 20, and with as many skill points on the way as possible.

    Cheers - T

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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    A Ruby Knight Vindicator with either a Cloistered Cleric or Ranger / Divine Crusader entry for spellcasting would be getting 4-6 skill points per level, BAB of 16+, and still get 9ths.

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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Beguiler qualifies for Swiftblade. A skillful gish is asking for a considerable amount of book work. Perhaps someone has done this already.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Unseen Seer is kinda gishy and gets a fair deal of skill points.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Ranger 2 / SA Thug Fighter 1 / Wizard 2 / Unseen Seer 10 / Abjurant Champion 5

    It gives you 12 levels of 6+INT 1 level of 4+INT and 6 levels of 2+INT SP classes. With Elf Ranger you can turn the 1st level to (4x) 8+INT, instead of 6+INT
    (Elf is also good for generalist Wizard sub level).

    It has Wiz 17 casting, but the caster level is a bit all over the place, so you definitely need Practiced Spellcater (probably twice).

    BAB +16, I believe.

    I award myself extra points (I'm also sure I'll get some points deducted because I made a mistake somewhere), because this build is immune to multiclass penalties :P
    Last edited by DEMON; 2018-01-03 at 05:50 PM. Reason: typos, beer
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buufreak View Post
    Cookie cutter racial cheese aside, we should probably keep an eye on the whole "Dwarf only" bit of the OP. But hey, that's just me. Everyone feel free to throw out more op tricks that are 100% topic irrelevant. :P

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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Ranger/Psion/Slayer/Sanctified Mind, especially with a couple of feats dropped on Open Minded?


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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    My signature has a list of spellcasting prestige classes, sortable and filterable by skill points and BAB.

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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    As per a different thread Bard/Druid/Green Whisperer/Fochlucan Lyrist.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    I've always enjoyed factotum/shaper psion/constructor 9 with Supernatural Transformation (Psionics) (or Practiced Manifester) and Able Learner, myself. Works best in gestalt, obviously.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Beguiler 4 / Sneak Attack Fighter 1 / Unseen Seer 8 / Eldritch Knight 7 gets you:
    BAB +16 / Beguiler Level 18 (=9th Level Spells) and 12 Levels of 6 + Int and 8 2 + Int. I'm assuming here the Fighter isn't Thug and instead choses the Hit-And-Run-Tactics ACF from Drow of the Underdark. Personally I believe it's worth the 2 extra Skill Points. In fact, if you go with that ACF you could take the Battle Caster feat, buy a Mithral Full Plate and be a (relatively) Skillfull Gish in Full Plate Armor.

    You could replace 5 levels of Eldritch Knight with Abjurant Champion but frankly on a beguiler basis it isn't worth the Combat Casting feat. Take Eldritch Knight 1 whenever you need the Bonus Fighter Feat
    and put the other 6 at the end of the build. Once you reach Level 15 you'll gain less skill points but you'll probably need fewer anyway. Of course, you could also delay the last level of Unseen Seer and start taking Eldritch Knight levels earlier if there is any final divination spell that you really want
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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    How skillful does it need to be exactly? That'll help determine what works.

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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Great suggestions so far, but I should probably point out we don't use psionics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Adventurer View Post
    How skillful does it need to be exactly? That'll help determine what works.
    There's no minimum requirement, just the more skills and skill points, the better.

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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    straight bard seems the easiest approach.
    You can snowflake war dance.
    and if your dragonwrought kobolds are truedragons you can sovereign archetype yourself into bonus fighter feats every 4 hd.
    if you're a divine bard...you could do contemplative to get a sweet domain, and you could always extra spell wieldskill spell from the initiate of gond.

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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Quote Originally Posted by Thurbane View Post
    Great suggestions so far, but I should probably point out we don't use psionics.
    If this is something you'd want to play rather than just a thought experiment it might good to know if you use fractional BAB, can mean the difference between reaching that+16 BAB or not.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Quote Originally Posted by A.A.King View Post
    If this is something you'd want to play rather than just a thought experiment it might good to know if you use fractional BAB, can mean the difference between reaching that+16 BAB or not.
    Fair enough. No fractional BAB in our games, unfortunately.

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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Well if you're okay with Beguiler spellcasting, Ranger 1 / (SA Thug) Fighter 1 / Beguiler 4 / Unseen Seer 8 / Abjurant Champion 5 / Dragonslayer 1 gets a bit more (+4) skillpoints than my previously proposed Ranger 2 / SA Thug Fighter 1 / Wizard 2 / Unseen Seer 10 / Abjurant Champion 5.

    Also if we go with Sublime Chord spellcasting: Ranger 4 / Wizard 2 / Unseen Seer 3 / Prestige Bard 1 / Sublime Chord 2 / Prestige Bard +1 / Unseen Seer +1 / Abjurant Champion 5 / Dragon Slayer 1 should give BAB 16 / full SC spellcasting. 10 levels of 6+INT SP classes, 2 levels of 4+INT and 8 levels of 2+INT.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buufreak View Post
    Cookie cutter racial cheese aside, we should probably keep an eye on the whole "Dwarf only" bit of the OP. But hey, that's just me. Everyone feel free to throw out more op tricks that are 100% topic irrelevant. :P

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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Bard 8 / Swiftblade 6 / Sublime Chord 2 / Unseen Seer 4
    (In order: Bard 7 / Swiftblade 2 / Bard +1 (8)(To Help with the prerequisite skills for Sublime Chord) / Sublime Chord 2 / Swiftblade +4 (6) / Unseen Seer 4)

    Gives you BAB +16, Sublime Chord Level 9 (= 9th levels), 12 levels of 6 + Int, 6 levels of 4 + Int, and only 2 levels of 2 + Int. However, because it's charisma based casting you'll have less skill points than you do with an int based caster like Beguiler or Wizard. Unseen Seer's Damage boost doesn't do much unless you convince your DM that Swiftblade's swiftsure is basically a form of skirmish and should be increased with +2d6. Only downside here is that you don't get Search as a class skill so you'll need to spend 16 of your skill points to reach that required 8 ranks to qualify for Unseen Seer. You can fix this by removing one level of Unseer Seer and adding a level of Ranger (you'll also be moving Swiftblade Lv2 until after taking at least one level in Sublime Chord). You can also trade away Track to get Trapfinding as an ability and Disable Device as a class skill to properly fullfill the Trap Monkey roll. You can even remove the 8th level of bard (you only need 7 to qualify for Sublime Chord) and take another level of Ranger if you really want that ranger bonus feat.

    Generally speaking, if you want to maximise skill points as well reaching the Gish Benchmarks you'll want either a Beguiler or Wizard basis and then move into Unseen Seer for it's 3/4 BAB and 6 + Int Skill Points.

    For a Divine Gish you can simply go Druid 8 / Seeker of the Misty Isle 8 / Prestige Ranger 4 to reach the BAB +16 9th Level Spell Benchmark and have 12 levels of 6 + Int Casting and 8 Levels 4 + Int Spell Casting.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Bard 3/Druid 2/Green Whisperer 5/Fochlucan Lyrist 10 is 3+Int after skill taxes

    Ranger 2/SA Thug Fighter 1/Wizard 2/Unseen Seer 10/Abjurant Champion 5 is 3.3+Int after skill taxes

    Beguiler 4/Sneak Attack Fighter 1/Unseen Seer 8/Eldritch Knight 7 is 3.3+Int after skill taxes

    By this standard, something like Ranger 1/Druid 8/Deadgrim 5/Druid 6 looks good with 4.2+Int after skill taxes.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Quote Originally Posted by Anthrowhale View Post
    Bard 3/Druid 2/Green Whisperer 5/Fochlucan Lyrist 10 is 3+Int after skill taxes

    Ranger 2/SA Thug Fighter 1/Wizard 2/Unseen Seer 10/Abjurant Champion 5 is 3.3+Int after skill taxes

    Beguiler 4/Sneak Attack Fighter 1/Unseen Seer 8/Eldritch Knight 7 is 3.3+Int after skill taxes

    By this standard, something like Ranger 1/Druid 8/Deadgrim 5/Druid 6 looks good with 4.2+Int after skill taxes.
    Such a calculation does not take into account that Unseen Seer's 'Skill Tax' are skill you'd probably want on such a character. Hide is almost guaranteed to be something you want anyway and Spot is almost as good. If you are designated Trap Monkey than similarly you'll want at least 8 ranks in Search. And of course, with Beguiler and Wizard being INT based caster's you're bound to have more skill points than with a bard or druid chassis.
    Remember: Offence is taken, not given



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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Quote Originally Posted by Anthrowhale View Post
    Bard 3/Druid 2/Green Whisperer 5/Fochlucan Lyrist 10 is 3+Int after skill taxes

    Ranger 2/SA Thug Fighter 1/Wizard 2/Unseen Seer 10/Abjurant Champion 5 is 3.3+Int after skill taxes

    Beguiler 4/Sneak Attack Fighter 1/Unseen Seer 8/Eldritch Knight 7 is 3.3+Int after skill taxes

    By this standard, something like Ranger 1/Druid 8/Deadgrim 5/Druid 6 looks good with 4.2+Int after skill taxes.
    As A.A.King said, this really depends on what you consider "skill tax" and what you consider skills relevant to the class'es role.

    Likewise, there are some PrCs with feat taxes so severe, that one might be better avoiding these PrCs and grabbing Open Minded, instead (when getting more skill points is one of his main goals).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buufreak View Post
    Cookie cutter racial cheese aside, we should probably keep an eye on the whole "Dwarf only" bit of the OP. But hey, that's just me. Everyone feel free to throw out more op tricks that are 100% topic irrelevant. :P

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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Bard / Warblade can work pretty well as a Gish, using Song of the White Raven and Snowflake Wardance.

    Plus, maneuvers don't interrupt your vocal Perform checks like a spell might.

    You can hit BAB 16 with just 4 levels of Warblade, which is enough to snag two Stances.

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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nifft View Post
    Bard / Warblade can work pretty well as a Gish, using Song of the White Raven and Snowflake Wardance.

    Plus, maneuvers don't interrupt your vocal Perform checks like a spell might.

    You can hit BAB 16 with just 4 levels of Warblade, which is enough to snag two Stances.
    Hmm, how about a Bardblade / Sublime Chord / JPM and/or Unseen Seer combo?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buufreak View Post
    Cookie cutter racial cheese aside, we should probably keep an eye on the whole "Dwarf only" bit of the OP. But hey, that's just me. Everyone feel free to throw out more op tricks that are 100% topic irrelevant. :P

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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Quote Originally Posted by Thurbane View Post
    Great suggestions so far, but I should probably point out we don't use psionics.
    That is a problem.

    And the cure is more cowbell psionics.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Quote Originally Posted by A.A.King View Post
    Such a calculation does not take into account that Unseen Seer's 'Skill Tax' are skill you'd probably want on such a character. Hide is almost guaranteed to be something you want anyway and Spot is almost as good. If you are designated Trap Monkey than similarly you'll want at least 8 ranks in Search. And of course, with Beguiler and Wizard being INT based caster's you're bound to have more skill points than with a bard or druid chassis.
    Sure, but it's waste if you are the designated knower-of-monsters whose job is to identify and advise on what the party encounters.

    This also doesn't take into account the value of an Intelligence focused character. The elf Wizard with an Intelligence of 20 has many more skill points than the half orc Druid with an Intelligence of 6. That's an extreme case---probably if you are trying to build a skill monkey character you go for Int 14 when your focus is elsewhere and Int ~18 when your focus is on Int, implying an Int focus is worth at least 2 skill points/level (or maybe 3 if you take into account level ups).

    And of course, human helps for the 1 skill point/level.

    Altogether, Human Beguiler 4/Sneak Attack Fighter 1/Unseen Seer 8/Eldritch Knight 7 taking Able Learner and maximizing Int looks pretty solid. Wizard or Wu Jen entry provide less skill points but more spell versatility.

    For a divine equivalent, maybe Human Archivist 4/Sneak Attack Fighter 1/Shadowbane Stalker 8/Windwalker 7 taking Able Learner. This provides good spell versatility at some cost in feats. In particular, you can potentially get Guidance of the Avatar, Improvisation, and Divine insight all at once.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Whirling Frenzy Barbarian 1/Druid 1/Bard 1/Druid +2/Geomancer 3/Rage Mage 1/Geomancer +4/Sublime Chord 1/warblade 1/jade phoenix mage 5

    Druid Spellcasting: 10 | Bard Spellcasting 1 | Sublime Chord Spellcasting 5 : Max Spell Level 7 (I think?)
    BAB: 15
    Skills: 6 2+int | 13 4+int | 1 6+int

    Pounce + whirling frenzy + casting while raging

    That one didn't work as well as I thought, but I figured I'd show it to those that may like it?

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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Quote Originally Posted by DEMON View Post
    Hmm, how about a Bardblade / Sublime Chord / JPM and/or Unseen Seer combo?
    Sublime Chord doesn't advance Inspire Courage, so it's not great for a Gish -- not compared to a base Bardblade.

    JPM doesn't offer White Raven, nor does it advance Inspire Courage.

    Plain Bard/Warblade has significant benefits.

    == == ==

    If you want 9th level Wizard spells with your Bardic music, then I'd suggest Wizard 5 / ___ 2 / Heartfire Fanner instead of Bard.

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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Another quick fix just based off of initial post is continuing cloistered cleric, as you had intended, but also taking the Spontaneous domain casting ACF for cleric on top of it.

    Pick true neutral as alignment, and be a cleric of War and Spell. Pick war domain as your choice for spontaneous casting. Spontaneously cast divine power whenever you need it. Pick up either extend spell, or quicken spell, and then Divine metamagic: XXX for your choice.

    Now it can either last longer, or Activate without taking up extra actions.



    Another option is picking up archivist, and crafting eternal wands of buff spells that you know you need. Archivist has access to the whole Divine arsenal of spells, so you can then really buff quite well. But the bookkeeping is terrible.

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    Default Re: [3.5] Skilful Gish?

    Another one: Mystic Ranger 6/SA Fighter 1/Divine Crusader 3/Shadowbane Stalker 8/Mystic Ranger 2

    For this one, most levels are 6+Int skills and the skill tax is quite low making up for the lack of Int focus.
    ExFighter: Immunity to Wizard
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    The Clockwork Wizard: All spells in no time.
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