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I'm building an Oracle for an online game (Carrion Crown) starting at 4th level, and I'm at a bit of a loss as to what to do with it. I chose Oracle because we need someone who can heal and tank, and that mostly means either divine caster or paladin, and I play a paladin in another game.
We roll for stats, and I got 17, 14, 12, 12, 12, 6. Planning to put the 6 in int, 17 in cha and 14 in either str or con.
I'm kind of at a loss for both a concept backstory-wise and gameplay-wise.
Right now, I'm trying to choose between a Time Oracle with the Tongues curse, a Nature Oracle with the animal companion and the Lame curse, or a Haunted Wood Oracle.
A nature oracle with a bonded animal is very similar to a druid, but IMO the druid is better. At the very least they get their spells a level earlier.
A time oracle looks like it is significantly better at later levels, with better spells later on, good revelations with level limits, and UMD being more useful once you've got more money to play with. The tongues curse is crippling & a pain to RP until level 10, too. Do you know what level range you're likely to be playing at?
Wood oracles might well be excellent rebels/guerilla fighters. What with that and the Haunted curse, you should be able to put together a background pretty easily. The time oracle is probably eventually more personally powerful but a wood oracle looks more interesting to me.
Nature Oracle is by no means simply a "druid wannabe". They get some cool nature-powers, but they still use the cleric spell list, which along with spontaneous casting makes them better healers than druids. They also get more "anti-undead" style spells, which is extremely helpful for CC.
And they have some very potent revelations. Especially Nature's Whispers and Natural Divination (plus the companion, of course). Cha to AC and the option of Cha to any save when you most need it makes you more resilient than most oracles.
Lame is a decent choice for a Nature oracle who can use their companion as a mount.
Druids are probably still more numerically powerful than nature oracles, but they don't really do exactly the same things.
Time is a weird mystery, because it has fantastic revelations but a crappy spell list (until very late in the game). I would look into options to replace some or all of the spell list here, perhaps through archetypes ( Ancient Lorekeeper is particularly helpful here).
The tongues curse is not crippling at all, it's basically the curse with a minor inconvenience for minor benefit. It's trivially simple to have your party just learn your language (which they should want to in-character too, if they have any tactical sense), and then all you really lose is the ability to use language-dependent spells in combat, which is really very minor.
Wood is the most tanky of your suggested mysteries, certainly quite viable for a front-liner.
You may also wish to consider Life, simply because it's so powerful in Carrion Crown with all the undead crawling around. Battle, Metal or Ancestors are good tank mysteries, if you're looking for an alternative there.
Have you considered Time Haunted? If they're messing with time, the Haunted curse can be refluffed as things happening at the wrong time, snippets of alternate time lines, something like that. Haunted gives you some handy spells, making up for the poor casting from Time.
You can consider Dual-cursed with Lame, Tongues, or (if the extra options are available) Legalistic. Legalistic is a great one for roleplay. Dual-Cursed gets some nice replacement low-level spells, nets you two more Revelations (saving you feats), and adds some Revelation options that fit Time beautifully.
Take your six to strength. A huge Con penalty is not worth it, since it provides way too many ways to die. That means you'll be casting, so don't bother with Metal, Battle, etc.
For a Time Oracle, I'd make them a little snippy and prone to headaches.
@ QuidEst - Believe me, the LAST place that 6 is going would be con. The reason I wanted to build a tanky character in the first place isn't because we don't have melee (we do) they're just kinda fragile. The Eidolon isn't so much a problem, since it doesn't die permanently and the summoner can just summon other stuff while it's gone, but the Magus is another story. A con penalty, and str-based, so her AC is not great. And she dies if she is killed.
The dual-cursed Haunted Legalistic Time Oracle could actually be pretty cool, rp-wise. And great spells to play with. The traits I picked were Dangerously Curious and Ghost Sight, but Time would mean I could pick a different trait (and have to FIND a different trait I liked...) and still be able to use UMD. And Perception is always a good skill to have.
@ Corlindale - A Life Oracle might be a pretty good solution to the problem I described above. Life Link could extend the Magus and Eidolon's HP a bit, and make them tankier so I don't have to do it. If I could stay off the front lines, I could put the 6 in str instead of int like I was planning, and have more skill points. And skill points are shiny.
On the other hand, you make a good case for Nature. Cha instead of Dex to AC means I could dump dex (after taking Improved Initiative to make up for it) and the Animal Companion could fight on the front lines for me, so I wouldn't have to be a melee character and a caster. Which would be nice! And Nature has a lot of cool Revelations, now that I'm taking a better look at it.