CO Optimization: The Fatemaker

The fatemaker is a wonderful prestige class from planar handbook. It is basically a roguish class, high skill points and wonderful skills. They also receive some arcane spells. I found almost nothing about them on the boards. The search function on this forum has only 7 results. So i decided to make this thread, a mini-guide of sorts, as a tribute.



Entry Requirements:

BAB: You need +4 BAB to enter. Obtaining this should be fairly easy.
Skills: You need 8 ranks in bluff, diplomacy or intimidate to enter the class. This gives you some versatility. I'd choose intimidate first, due to the demoralizing tricks you can pull off (since the class is cha-based). Then diplomacy, which is basically helpful in many social situations. I'd almost never choose bluff over the other two. You also need two other skills at 5 ranks each, so choose those that give you synergy bonuses or powerful abilities at those ranks. Examples are bluff, certain knowledge skills, balance, etc.
Feats: Yes, it's a worthless skill focus, but many classes give them as bonus feats. The best part is that you can get a permanent skill focus in intimidate from the magical location Otyugh's Hole from complete scoundrel. It only costs 3000 gp, but the activation is pretty difficult.
Alignment: You must be nonlawful. Not much of a problem generally.

Class Skills:

The number of skill points per day is wonderful. If you haven't, make sure to grab 1 rank in every monster identifying knowledge and the skill trick collector of stories. Also, having single ranks in other knowledges dosn't hurt. Spend at least 5 ranks on balance, sense motive and bluff. I'd keep tumble, UMD and diplomacy maxed at all times. The only "roguish" skill the list lacks is disable device.

Class Features:

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Unlike most classes, this provides you with proficiencies! You get all simple weapons, longsword, rapier, sap, short sword, shortbow and whip! You also get proficiency with light armor and shields. Fatemaker spells have no arcane spell failure chance in light armor. There is a hidden bonus feat in this level, an exotic weapon proficiency with the whip. Consider the skill trick whip climber.
Spells: The spells per day/known are standard for prestige classes that grant a small selection. The spell list itself isn't impressive, but you do get haste eventually. Also note that fatemakers receive sanctuary and restoration as arcane spells. Other useful spells include disguise self, resist energy, spider climb, protection from energy. You also get the ability to activate eternal wands, a great boon to the character's versatility.
Take-Charge Appeal: This is not bad at all. You eventually get a +3 unnamed bonus to your charisma score.
Confidence of the Fated: Gain a bonus to nearly everything equal to your class level. The best way to use this, is probably to save against powerful abilities or making high skill checks. Using it to optimize your attack bonus isn't that good, as you already possess true strike. This ability is probably a non-action.
Sneak Attack: Fatemakers get some sneak attack dice. While not enough to deal significant damage, you do qualify for several ambush feats, which can debuff targets to help your teammates.
Aura of Confidence: Wow, this is awesome. Morale bonuses are not that common and it boosts several important rolls. Of course the downside is that they must be adjacent to make this work.
Ego Manifestation: Meh, not that good. It will only last 10 rounds, max. However, you do gain a fat bonus to your intimidate (the flat +4 bonus from the modified damage reduction and the bonus from your larger size).

Attributes:

Strength: Not important.
Dexterity: As above. These depend on your entry classes and the combat style you have chosen.
Constitution: Hit points and fortitude saves are important.
Intelligence: More skills are important to skill monkies :D
Wisdom: Nah, nothing here, except if you want to grab arcane disciple.
Charisma: Your first priority.

Feats:

Able Learner: This is not so hot. You skill list is awesome! The only reason you should take this, is to get disable device to find traps properly. An alternative is if you have a class with access to obscure skills (like factotum) or you just like to normalize your skill list before your entry.
Leadership: Great feat for any character, even more for those who are going to focus on charisma.

Obtain Familiar: I'm a huge fan of familiars. Check this post to find out more. You can even help it with your aura!
Improved Familiar: Upgrade your awesome companion :D. I consider imps the finest choice.
Practiced Spellcaster: In case you need higher caster level than fatemaker provides, this will boost it greatly.
Knowedge Devotion: Nice, it means you can get at least +1 insight bonus on attack and damage against nearly every opponent you face. That is of course, if you have the appropriate knowledges.  
Arcane Disciple: This is a great way of expanding your spell list. Because you are going to be using them only once per day though, the main use is to fuel reserve feats. The downside is that you need wisdom to cast them, when it is a dump stat for fatemakers.
Acidic Splatter: You can get it with arcane disciple (slime domain). There is not much flavor, but it lets you use acid touch attacks, which are upgraded by your sneak attack dice. Nice offensive choice, but you can use eternal wands/cheap normal wands with rays for the same effect.
Dimensional Jaunt: Hoping around like this greatly helps your mobility. The good thing is that many domains offer teleportation spells, so you can choose to your liking. Travel domain is probably the best choice though.
Arcane Strike: This is chosen quite often, but note that you don't have a great amount of spells to back it up. You can only use it to mini-nova when facing important enemies, but you hardly be able to use it often.
Improved Buckler Defense: If you are going to use a two handed weapon, this is the feat for you!


Exalted Feats

A lot of feats are a boon to charisma based characters.

Celestial Familiar: You can get the coure eladrin this way.
Nymph's Kiss: Bonus skill points and a +2 to charisma related checks. Just like christmas :D

Vile Feats

Same as the exalted route, but you can get some for free if you choose to worship the elder evils, so clearly they've got an advantage.

Chosen of Evil: Hey, the bonus is nice, but the con damage can be a problem.
Apostate: I like the bonuses, but you need to have a lot wisdom to pull it off. Probably not worth it, unless you have rolled really well.
Evil's Blessing: Having problems with your saves? :D Nice, but the downside is that you've got to activate it once in a while.
Dark Speech: It has several rolls that involve charisma. The downside is that it deals charisma damage, but there are ways around that.
Filthy Outburst: I don't like this. It is too draining for your charisma and it probably affects allies, too.
Dark Whispers: I dislike this, also. The staggered condition is ok, but it is both a supernatural and a mind-affecting ability. It isn't too draining though, as it deals only 1 charisma damage.
Mitigate Suffering: Well, if you can't take one level of binder for naberius, this is a nice alternative, since you already have restoration on your list. You can activate the vile feats that deal attribute damage without problem this way.

Entry Ideas:

Barbarian 5
Bard 3/Paladin 2
Paladin 5
Crusader 5
Warblade 5
Rogue 6
Factotum 1/Paladin 4
Factotum 1/Ranger 4: Enough to net you a familiar with the ranger levels (ACF from the cityscape web enhancement). You can then go for double familiars or just get the improved familiar feat.
Swordsage 6
Paladin 2/Hexblade 3

Note: Paladins mentioned above are supposed to be the alternative paladins of freedom or slaughter from unearthed arcana.

Builds:

 Factotum 1/Ranger 4/Fatemaker 10/Witch Slayer 5
Posted by
On Wednesday, August 17, 2016 at 9:01 AM

4 comments:

  1. I've been looking at the Marshal class in Miniatures Handbook for a new campaign we're running next month. Fatemaker seems like a pretty good fit considering the use of charisma and Skill Focus (Diplomacy ) at first level. Any thoughts?

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    Replies
    1. I'd say go for it. Probably Marshal 4/Crusader 1/Fatemaker x
      You could grab draconic aura (dragon magic) and dilate aura (fiendish codex II) to save your class feature (aura of confidence).
      If you are chaotic good, you could spend two feats on obtain familiar/celestial familiar and gain a Coure eladrin (has a permanent magic circle against evil!)

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    2. I should have mentioned ToB is banned by our DM....what would be a good replacement for Crusader?

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    3. It's just a good +1 BAB class that gives you many benefits. Replace it with any cha-synergy +1 BAB class you like.

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