5 Levels in MAgus Arcane archer so you can get flaming etc ability, rest in eldritch rogue using combat tricks to get your feats…and sneak die…once you get to scorching ray and high enough level to cast extra rays, boo ya…
A 14 BAB archer (with an additional -2 penalty from eldritch archer) without access to something like transformation is never going to be the ‘best archer build hands down’. This is just a very, very weak archer, who will have real trouble hitting anything on anything above Normal difficulty, with an additional very, very weak scorching ray (very weak since you will have a caster level of 15 at level 20) each round (and not even each round, because you will have to invest mythic feats to have a reasonable amount of spells per day). You are probably thinking that you will be getting your 5d6 sneak attack on each ray and each attack you have, but in reality you will be barely hitting enemies on anything lower than 20.
A much better way would be to go something like EA 2/ Eldritch Knight 10/(Sorc + DD or Eldritch Scoundrel) 8. That may be the best caster/archer hybrid, but still probably not the best archer build.
As a general rule of thumb, you shouldn’t ever level up an Eldritch Archer beyond level 2. For your 3 level investment over that you get what exactly, +1d6 fire damage per arrow?
I prefer a very high attack bonus archer like a mutated warrior.
I hate SA on archers, most of time SA for my party is useless. Unless it is high stealth Trickster Mythic path SA with Stealth Trick Rank 2.
I need archers to kill mages and archers quick, Greater Invisibility is useless after act 3 so no sneak attacks after that on non-flanked targets.
If we’re looking at pure archer, probably a slayer of some sort. Full BAB, quick access to feats, 2/3 sneak die and some additional swift action stackable bonuses from study target are higher levels.
If we factor in other strengths, like casting and a pet, a ranger will be very strong, in this AP, favored enemy will be very consistent, and there’s always the demonslayer archetype. I did the math a few months ago, and ranger loses to a straight fighter for archery damage, without his spells and without favored enemy up. With spells, he’s comparable to the fighter. With favored enemy, he pulls quite a bit ahead.
I haven’t consider how mythic abilities would affect this.
Mythic - Weapon Focus +2 to hit (over what Ranger can get), Weapon Specialization +5 damage
But right now Demonslayer is worst Ranger you can pick due to Demons in code not counting as Outsiders. So Demonslayer is good at slaying all outsiders other than Demons. Also Demons were split into 3 categories so Favored enemy for demons was nerfed.
I think the Rowdy class would make the best archer. Vital Strike does not work with ranged atm, and neither does the extra 2d6 precision per sneak attack die.
It would do something like 8d6 with sneak attack on level 1.
Nope, that’s definitely not a good build. The more attacks you can get, the worse Vital Strike becomes. Archers get 2 more attacks compared to (non-TWF) melees. A level 20 Rowdy will have an equivalent of 4x 15 BAB attacks, a level 20 Ranger/Fighter will have 4x full BAB attacks + iteratives. There is literally no reason to use vital strike instead of full attacks on ranged characters.
If number of attacks is your measurement I would go with a Zen Archer for 8 attacks.
Zen Archer doesn’t get 8 attacks.
Thanks. I didn’t know that. It seems inconsistent with the lore, but is probably better for game balance. If still think that the pet pushes them over the top, but I suspect they’ll fall short relative to a slayer or fighter due to weapon specialization and the gloves and sneak attack die/study target. They are also a require more micromanagement with casting spells on important combat.
If number of attacks is measurment I would go with Two Weapon Thrower with 8 attacks, 9 with haste.
Wonder if it could be 10 with 2 axes with speed quality in each hand.
Two Speed weapons didn’t give additional attacks when I tested it, and they aren’t supposed to.
Then this must be a bug. Make sure to check whether you actually get 8 attacks in combat. Zen Archer only gets bonus attacks from Flurry, which is +2 attacks at level 11 and doesn’t (at least not supposed to) stack with either Rapid Shot or Manyshot, which is also 2 attacks. In the Alpha you could make them stack by by toggling some things on/off and reequipping your weapon, but this is not intended.
It’s four from base. Two from flurry of blows. One from haste. And one from ki pool. No bug.
While 8 attacks is impressive, +25 attack bonus (unbuffed?) for a level 20 archer is kinda low, very low to be honest…
Yeah with rapid shot and weapon focus 28 AB should be minimum on 20lvl Lann with no Mythic, basic weapon and no buffs. Seems he gave stat points all over place.
Also seems to have only +1 longbow and no other equipment, so I guess it is cheated lvl 20 in early game.
Here is the attack breakdown.
Yes this is not a real level 20 character. I leveled him from his real level (11) to prove that he does in fact get 8 attacks. At level 11, it’s six attacks.
And I went short bow for Lann, because I heard it was a better choice.
haven’t tested this, but an option to consider with an equal number of attacks is the sohei/ranger. with eleven levels of sohei instead of zen archer you will get the second flurry and you may even add it to a crossbow if that is your thing-- turn strength into a dump stat and increase the crit range of your weapon.
a sohei/ranger gets an animal companion and the ranger archery spells provide obvious synergy. if you take the ranger levels to start and reach level four, you will be able to choose an animal companion other than a horse. “not horse” is a good choice for an animal companion.
this is not to suggest sohei/ranger is better than a zen archer insofar as archery is concerned. it is different.