[Spoiler Alert: I’m a giant nerd. I’ve been running a Pathfinder campaign for the past two years, and I’m starting to work on the next one. All of my new players are relative neophytes to the game, and I put together this rough breakdown to guide them through choosing a proper character class for their style. One of my players really liked it, and suggested I put it up on my blog for use by nerds throughout the land — and since I’m lazy, and going to be away for a week — WISH GRANTED, Mr. Yellow Devil.
Any other tabletop nerds out there? I’d love any feedback or suggestions you have on this chart.]
Here’s a rough break-down of the nineteen character classes available. Think of this as a very rough overview, to give you some idea for further discussion with me and the other players. I’ve also included links to further descriptions of each class — it’s very technical, but there’s a good overview of each through the link, enough to give you more idea of what each class can do.
Nineteen Ways To Die
|Alchemist||“I don’t expect you will really understand the beauty of the softly simmering cauldron with its shimmering fumes, the delicate power of liquids that creep through human veins, bewitching the mind, ensaring the senses … I can teach you how to bottle fame, brew glory, even stopper death..” S.Snape||Making themselves more powerful; influencing enemies and the battlefield in unexpected ways.||Severus Snape
Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde
|Barbarian||Fueled by rage, they destroy all who oppose them.||Doing lots of damage.||Conan
|Bard||Their songs are magical, their wit and knowledge deadly.||Making the party more effective.
|Cavalier||Noble knights, they ride into battle leading the way to victory.||Mounted combat.
Unique Ability: Tactics
|Cleric||True servant of their faith, they shield the world from evil.||Healing.
Making the party more effective.
Thoros of Myr
|Druid||The raw forces of nature are theirs to command.||Elemental magic.
|Tim the Druid
|Fighter||In the press of battle, there are none more rightfully feared.||Doing damage.
Most adaptable class.
|Gunslinger||The smell of gunsmoke and black powder, hard-knuckle death dealers.||Doing a lot of damage.
Unique ability: Grit
Chow Yun Fat
|Inquisitor||Their god commands them to bring the unfaithful to judgement.||Weakening enemies.
Unique ability: Judgement
|Magus||Pure magical energy, channeled into the sharp edge of a blade.||Doing a lot of damage.
|[I honestly can’t think of an example — the cast spells through their weapons, it’s ridiculous.]|
|Monk||A combatant armed only with wisdom.||Mobility, and damage.||Tempi
Wong Fei Hung
|Oracle||Their power is a mystery, even to themselves.||Healing.
Unique Ability: Mystery
|Paladin||A divine warrior, they bring hope and courage to all.||Healing/Combat Hybrid.
|Ranger||A fierce combatant, a skilled traveller of the wilderness.||Ranged Combat.
Tracking, Wilderness Survival.
|Aragorn, son of Arathorn|
|Rogue||A thief, a trickster, cunning wanderer of the night.||Stealth, Trapfinding and Lockpicking.
Sneak Attack damage.
|Sorcerer||Magic flows in their blood, and bends to their will.||Spellcasting.
Knowing less spells than a Wizard, but can cast more often.
|Kelsier the Survivor
|Summoner||They create a powerful beast, the Eidolon from pure thought and desire.||Well, summoning.
Perfect if you really want to play a Monster.
|The Incredible Hulk
|Witch||Their power flows from spirits unknown.||Spellcasting.
Freaking people out.
Unique ablity: Hexes
|Wizard||Their mastery of magic comes from long study and mental excellence.||Spellcasting.
Most varied, and adaptable spellcasters.
Barbarian Fighter Ranger Monk Cleric Wizard
Paladin Oracle Witch Summoner
Gunslinger Inquisitor Sorcerer
Cavalier Druid Alchemist
If you want to do damage: Barbarian, Magus, Monk, Gunslinger
If you want to hurt things with magic: Wizard, Sorcerer, Magus, Witch
If you want to heal things: Cleric, Oracle
If you want to be a leader: Cavalier, Paladin, Cleric, Bard
Sneaky, stabby type: Rogue, Ranger, Inquisitor
*It’s tough to pin Kvothe down to one class. Bard/Assassin/Wizard/Fighter/Rogue would just about cover it.