Author Topic: Please help me hunt swiftly! (Swift Hunter build advice).  (Read 503 times)

Lee Vice

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Please help me hunt swiftly! (Swift Hunter build advice).
« on: June 25, 2017, 02:13:36 PM »
Hi there!

I am getting back into 3.5 after a few years break, and I have decided that I want to play a swift hunting archer! But with the handbooks down and my memory rusty, I may need to get a little help getting everything right. I am especially concerned about my damage output, as the build I have so far seems to be lacking in that department, and I somehow need to function as the party rogue (= trapfinder and scout) as well. All 3.5 books and magazines with the official WotC seal of approval on the cover is allowed.

Here goes:

Race: Wood elf
- Probably not the greatest of races, but I like the keen senses, the auto-detect on secret doors, and the style. I am not looking for a better alternative for my race.

Stats (28 points PB):
Str: 16
Dex: 16 (+1 and lvl 4, 16, 20, 24 and 28)
Con: 12
Int: 12
Wis: 12 (+1 at lvl 8 and 12)
Cha: 8

Levels and feats:
-1: Scout 1 Feat (Precise Shot)
-2: Scout 2
-3: Ranger 1 Feat (Power Attack*), bonus feat (Track)
-4: Ranger 2 Combat style (Rapid Shot)
-5: Ranger 3 Bunus feat (Endurance)
-6: Scout 3 Feat (Swift Hunter)
-7: Ranger 4
-8: Ranger 5
-9: Ranger 6 Feat (Greater Manyshot), Improved combat style (Manyshot)
-10: Scout 4 Bunus feat (Improved Skirmish)
-11: Ranger 7
-12: Ranger 8 Feat (Darkstalker)
-13: Ranger 9
-14: Ranger 10
-15: Nightsont Enforcer 1 Feat (Craven)
-16: Ranger 11 Combat style mastery (Improved Precise Shot)
-17: Ranger 12
-18: Ranger 13 Feat (Improved Initiative)
-19: Ranger 14
-20: Ranger 15

* Power Attack is chosen for when I lack the space to manoeuvre, and must rely on something else than skirmish for damage. The other guys in my group does not like this feat on an archer, but I kind of like the option.

Now, my main questions are:

1) What is the optimal favoured enemies to take? I want to get all of the types that normally resist precision damage, so Im thinking 1) Undeads, 2) Constructs 3), Elementals, 4) Plants and 5) Oozes. Am I missing anything crucial?

2) Am I missing any good ways to increase my damage output?

3) As I would like to function as the party trap expert, I think that I´ll want to get the Trap Expert ACF for Ranger, so that I can keep Search and Disable Device maxed out, but I would also like to be able to use Track. Is there any ACFs for Scout that lets me sell Trapfinding for Track, to any other feat that I am getting so that I can open up a feat slot for Track?

4) My animal companion is going to suck, and I don't think that I will be getting any mileage out of Distracting Shot as the target is not rendered flat-footed for my own follow-up shots. Can I replace my Animal Companion with anything useful?

General advice is also appreciated, as I am sure that I have missed more than a few things in my build.


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Re: Please help me hunt swiftly! (Swift Hunter build advice).
« Reply #1 on: June 25, 2017, 02:47:05 PM »
I think you're missing Point Blank Shot. It's a prerequisite for Precise Shot and most other archery feats.

Power Attack applies to melee only, so you'll also have to give up using the rest of your fancy bow feats and the likely souped up magical bow you'd normally be using. If you want something similar, try to get Hank's Bow instead, which will save you the feat in addition to being a pretty solid bow. You might need to change your character's name to Hank, though. In any case, completely avoiding melee will let you save a bit on your needed Strength score, too.

Edit: You don't necessarily have to boost your Wisdom with level up points. From a base of 12, you can get up to 18 Wisdom with a +6 enhancement bonus item, which is enough for a bonus spell slot of each of your Ranger spell levels.
« Last Edit: June 25, 2017, 02:48:47 PM by Garryl »
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Lee Vice

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Re: Please help me hunt swiftly! (Swift Hunter build advice).
« Reply #2 on: June 25, 2017, 03:14:14 PM »
I am on my phone, so I have to keep this short.

1) I meant to write PBS as my first level feat, as I have no need for Precise Shot. I get IPS for free from my combat style, and no other feats I have selected needs PS as a prereq.

2) Power Attack is for when I am forced into melee (which will happen sometimes), to insure that I will not be rendered totally useless. Avoiding melee is of course nice, but consistently doing so is just not an option.

3) Hanks Bow is probably not going to drop, as the DM thinks thatvit is dumb and overpowered, so I am not going to count on it.
« Last Edit: June 25, 2017, 03:15:59 PM by Lee Vice »


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Re: Please help me hunt swiftly! (Swift Hunter build advice).
« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2017, 03:16:33 PM »
Consider a dip in Cloistered Cleric. You can get Knowledge Domain to trade for Knowledge Devotion, Elf Domain for Point Blank Shot, and the Travel Domain for Travel Devotion.

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Re: Please help me hunt swiftly! (Swift Hunter build advice).
« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2017, 04:26:14 PM »
Certain aberrations are immune to precision damage. See if your DM will let you take the rare (Swarm) subtype as well. FE subtypes should be universal anyways: fire, cold, etc. FE is literally the weakest "main" class ability in core. It's unbalanced and needs a buff.
Sigh. Not again. :(