This Pathfinder Wrath of the Righteous Cavalier Build Class Guide will be covering the Cavalier Class, which is one of the new Classes. In this Guide you’ll learn not only how to play the Cavalier Class, but also what the differences are between the Cavalier Archetypes: Beast Rider, Cavalier of the Paw, Disciple of the Pike, Fearsome Leader, Gendarme, Knight of the Wall, and Standard Bearer.
There will of course be tips about which Abilities, Skills and Feats to take, along with some suggestions about how to play the Class effectively (including how Mounted Combat Works in Pathfinder Wrath of the Righteous). This will not be a copy of the Pathfinder Handbook, and I will attempt to summarize things (where applicable) to make it easier to understand, because I feel that a big part of the reason people need Guides for Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous, is that it can be a bit overwhelming to sift through this on your own. If you’re new to Pathfinder Wrath of the Righteous, or you would just like an overview of the Cavalier Class and how to make an effective one, this Cavalier Build Guide is for you.
Cavalier Build | Pathfinder Wrath of the Righteous Class Guide
The Cavalier Class in Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous is a martial Class that excels in melee combat, and it often rides its Animal Companion using Charge Attack, which can often one shot most enemies. They typically favor a “Lance” type Weapon, and can buff party members with their Banner or their Tactician Ability. As such, Cavalier Builds are fantastic front-liners, and add more than just melee damage.
Mounted Combat gives the Cavalier unique advantages that unmounted Classes don’t gain, such as: increased Movement Speed, a Mount that usually takes damage before the character riding it (giving you a health bubble), ways to mitigate damage to your Animal Companion (making it extremely tough to kill), and of course Charge Attack. And that’s before mentioning that there are many Animal Companions in Pathfinder Wrath of the Righteous, allowing you to pick the best one for you. If you plan to play a Mounted character, Cavalier is the go-to choice.
- Primary Abilities: Strength, Constitution
- Hit Die: d10
- Skills: Athletics, Mobility, Persuasion
- Base Attack Bonus: +1
- Proficiencies: Simple Weapons, Martial Weapons, Light Armor, Medium Armor, Heavy Armor, Shields (except Tower Shields)
- Archetypes: Beast Rider, Disciple of the Pike, Gendarme, Knight of the Wall, Standard Bearer
Pathfinder Wrath of the Righteous Cavalier Build | Class Features
In this section we’ll take a look at the Class Features of the Cavalier, or essentially what makes a Cavalier a Cavalier in Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous. Mounted Combat plays a huge role in Cavalier Builds, but I will cover that in the next section because it’s simply too much to add here, and might confuse things. Let’s begin first with Challenge.
This Class Feature allows the Cavalier to Challenge an enemy, increasing its damage against it by +1 per Cavalier Level with each attack until its dead or unconscious, and this is done as a Swift Action meaning you can still attack in the same turn. Cavaliers can only use this once per day, but this number increases by 1 every 3 Cavalier Levels for a maximum of 7x per day at Level 19. These will be replenished when the Cavalier Rests.
The Cavalier will take a -2 Armor Class penalty to all attacks made by every other enemy (other than the target) while it is still alive, but once they reach Level 12 they will also impose this -2 AC penalty on the target. Note this AC penalty of the Challenged target only applies to attacks made by other friendly units, and not the Cavalier itself.
The Tactician Class Feature allows the Cavalier to select one of their known Teamwork Feats, and lets them to use this in combat to buff their entire party for 3 rounds plus 1 round for every 2 Cavalier Levels, whether their party members meet the requirements or not. This is especially good, since Teamwork Feats tend to become more effective the more party members share the same Feats.
As I mentioned, Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous Cavaliers can use the Charge Attack feature much more efficiently than other Classes. Normally when you use Charge you gain +2 to your Attack Roll, but suffer a -2 AC penalty afterwards. However, once Cavaliers reach Level 3 this Attack Roll bonus becomes +4, and they suffer no penalty to AC, but only if they use Charge while Mounted.
At Level 11 Cavaliers gain Mighty Charge, doubling the the Threat Range (Critical Hit Range) of their Weapon while Mounted and using Charge Attack. This doubles the chance for them to Critically Strike enemies while using Charge while Mounted (does not stack with other bonuses that improve Threat Range), which can be particularly devastating when using Weapons that have already high Threat Ranges (like the Fauchard). Additionally, they can make a free Bull Rush or Trip attack afterwards without prompting an Attack of Opportunity.
At Level 20 Cavaliers gain Supreme Charge which doubles the damage they deal with Charge Attack while Mounted, and triples the damage if they use a Lance Weapon type. The Longspear appears to be one such Weapon, but the damage explanation screens seem buggy and not well thought out so it’s hard to tell for sure.
At Level 5 Cavaliers gain the Banner Class Feature which allows them to passively boost the Charge Attack Rolls of their party member in range by +1, as well as Saving Throws against Fear effects by +2. These increase by +1 every 5 levels, for a total of +4 to Attack Rolls and +5 to Saving Throws against Fear. At Level 14 Cavaliers gain Greater Banner, which extends the Saving Throw bonus to Charm and Compulsion spell effects as well.
In Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous, Cavaliers will select an Order to become part of during Character Creation that will grant them further bonuses as they gain Levels, and they are currently the only Class in Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous that belongs to one, besides the Prestige Class Hellknight. In this section I’ll cover what those Orders are, and what they do.
Cavaliers who select the Order of the Cockatrice will see an increase in their own personal damage and capabilities. Select this Order if you want to deal more DPS with your Cavalier, but are less concerned with buffing your party.
- Challenge – Increased damage against Challenged targets as long as you are the only one Threatening them (passive)
- Braggart – Gain Dazzling Display and +2 to melee Attack Rolls vs. Feared targets (passive)
- Steal Glory – Gains an Attack of Opportunity against targets threatened when another friendly Critically Hit them (passive)
- Moment of Triumph – For 1 Round gain a Bonus equal to your Charisma Modifier to essentially all Rolls and your Armor Class, and automatically confirm Critical Hits. Can be used once per day. (Free Action)
Cavaliers who select the Order of the Lion are more balanced and gain bonuses to attack and defense, as wells gaining features that will benefit not only themselves, but also those around them. Select this Order if you want an increase in DPS and defense for both you and your group.
- Challenge – Increases your Dodge AC vs. Challenged target by +1, increasing every 4 levels to a maximum of +5 (passive)
- Knowledge (World) – Gain this Skill as one of your Class Skills (passive)
- Lion’s Call – Allies in range gain 1 + the Cavalier’s Charisma Modifier bonus to Saving Throws against Fear effects, and +1 on all Attack Rolls for a number of rounds equal to the Cavalier’s Level. (Standard Action)
- For the King – Allies in range gain the Cavalier’s Charisma Modifier as a bonus to Attack and Damage rolls for one round. Can be used once per combat. (Swift Action)
- Shield of the Liege – Allies adjacent to the Cavalier gain a +3 Shield bonus to their Armor Class. (passive)
Cavaliers who select Order of the Shroud have a particular grudge against the Undead, and have both defensive and offensive bonuses. Select this Order if you want to be much more effective vs. Undead enemies, without gaining any abilities that buff your allies.
- Challenge – Gain +1 morale bonus to Attack Rolls vs. Undead enemies who are Challenged, increasing by +1 for every 4 Cavalier levels. (passive)
- Lore (Religion) – Gain Lore Religion as a Class Skill. (passive)
- Spiritual Shield – Add your Charisma Modifier to your Deflection Armor Class vs. Challenged enemies. (passive)
- Destroyer of the Undead – Use your Alignment for the purposes of overcoming Undead Damage Reductions, and bypass all Damage Reductions of Undead whom you have Challenged. (passive)
- Stand Against Darkness – Challenged Undead will prompt an Attack of Opportunity from the Cavalier if they strike him or adjacent allies with a melee attack. This Attack of Opportunity gains a +2 morale bonus to its Attack Roll. Additionally, the confirmation rolls of Challenged Undead against the Cavalier add a Deflection Armor Bonus equal to the Cavalier’s Charisma Modifier. (passive)
Cavaliers who select Order of the Star are a bit more religious than other Cavaliers, and gain bonuses that are both offensive and defensive. Additionally, they can bestow some of these bonuses on allies that share the same faith as them. Select this Order if you plan to play a religious Cavalier, or one that intends to Multiclass with Paladin or Cleric.
- Challenge – Gain +1 morale bonus to all Saving Throws against Challenged enemies that you are Threatening, increasing by +1 every 4 Cavalier levels. (passive)
- Lore (Religion) – Gain Lore (Religion) as a Class Skill
- Calling – Applies your Charisma Modifier to your next Ability Check, Attack Roll, Skill Check or Saving Throw, and can be used up to 4x a day as a Free Action. Additionally, count half your Cavalier Levels towards the effects of Lay on Hands or Channel Energy if you Multiclassed with Paladin or Cleric. (passive)
- For the Faith – Grants the Cavalier a morale bonus to Attack Rolls for 1 round equal to his Charisma Modifier. Can be used once per day, gaining another use every 4 levels. Additionally, any allies in range that share the same Faith gain half of this bonus. (Free Action)
- Retribution – Whenever an enemy attacks the Cavalier or an adjacent ally of the same faith, they provoke an Attack of Opportunity that receives a +2 morale bonus on its Attack Roll. If that enemy Critically Hits, the Cavalier treats that enemy as “Challenged” for the Attack of Opportunity. (passive)
Cavaliers who select Order of the Sword focus primarily on the offense of the Cavalier, with a heavy focus on Mounted combat. Select this Order if you are new to playing a Cavalier, or if you intend to use a Mount that has very high Strength.
- Challenge – Provides a +1 moral bonus to Attack Rolls against the Challenged target, as long as you are Mounted. This increases by +1 every 4 Cavalier Levels. (passive)
- Lore (Religion) – Gain Lore (Religion) as a Class Skill. (passive)
- By My Honor – Gain a +2 morale bonus to the Saving Throw of your choice against attacks from the specific Alignment of your choosing. (passive)
- Mounted Mastery – Add the Strength Modifier of your Mount to your Damage Rolls when using Charge Attack. Additionally, gain a bonus Feat from a list of Mounted Combat related Feats. (passive)
- Knight’s Challenge – Can be used once per day to Challenge a target and increase your Attack and Damage Rolls vs. that target by your Charisma Modifier, in addition to your other Challenge bonuses. Additionally, gain a +4 circumstance bonus to Critical Hit confirmation rolls vs. this target. (Swift Action)
Of these 5 Orders I highly recommend selecting either the Order of the Sword, Order of the Lion, or Order of the Star. Order of the Sword is extremely straight forward and great for new Cavaliers that don’t quite know all the nuances of playing one. Order of the Lion provides some fantastic buffs to your group, making the game easier in general. And, Order of the Faith allows you to retaliate against just about any enemy who attacks you in melee once you reach Level 15, which can be deadly. However, these Orders don’t change the way you play all that much, so don’t be overly concerned about which you choose.
How Mounted Combat Works in Pathfinder Wrath of the Righteous
Part of playing a Cavalier Build in Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous is of course using Mounted Combat, and there are probably not many reasons you would play a Cavalier if you don’t intend to use this feature. In this section I’ll discuss how Mounted Combat works in Pathfinder Wrath of the Righteous, and how to take advantage of it.
During Character Creation Cavaliers gain an Animal Companion which operates separately to the Cavalier, and has its own set of Stats and Abilities (it even has its own archetype). Of all the Cavalier archetypes, only the Beast Rider and Cavalier of the Paw has a choice of which Mount to begin the game with, and all others begin with Horse, which are mountable by any race.
Regardless of which Mount you ride though, you can select default, or select an archetype for it, and they are as follows:
- Animal Companion (default) – The gain +4 to Will Saves against Enchantment effects, and they also gain Evasion, and Improved Evasion. At higher levels they gain less Attack Roll penalty when making a second attack in the same round.
- Aggressor – Gains Power Attack, and loses Evasion and Devotion. Also sets bleeding on enemies when it attacks the first time each round.
- Bully – Animal Companion gains the Trip and Bull Rush Combat Maneuvers. At higher levels it gains +2 to Attack and Damage Rolls against enemies it’s used these against in that same turn. Also gains Evasion and Improved Evasion. Loses Devotion and Multiattack.
- Bulwark – Gains Light and Medium Barding and has Damage Reduction that increases over time, making it exceptionally tanky. But it loses Multiattack, reducing its damage.
- Daredevil – Animal Companion has improved Mobility Checks adding half its Hit Die to its rolls. This means they provoke Attacks of Opportunity less easily, and have an easier time squeezing through tight spots, climbing and jumping. They can also not be Flanked, and gain Evasion and Improved Evasion. Loses Devotion and Multiattack.
- Deathtouched – These Animal Companions count as “Undead” for the purposes of many game effects, and have better Fortitude Saving Throws vs. effects that wouldn’t normally affect Undead. At higher levels they gain less Attack Roll penalty when making a second attack in the same round. They also gain Evasion, but not Improved Evasion and loses Devotion.
- Racer – These Animal Companions move faster when unarmed and carrying a light load, which is great for moving about the battlefield more quickly. At higher levels they gain less Attack Roll penalty when making a second attack in the same round. They also gain Evasion, and Improved Evasion. Loses Devotion.
- Wrecker – These Animal Companions gain the Sunder Armor Combat Maneuver, and +2 when using and defending against it. The gain +4 to Will Saves against Enchantment effects, and they also gain Evasion, and Improved Evasion. Loses Multiattack.
Of these selecting default is probably the best for players new to using Animal Companions because they simply have passive benefits that are good for any Animal Companion, no matter the style of play you are using. However, Bulwarks are extremely tough to kill if you don’t mind the loss in damage, and Aggressors are the pound for pound king of DPS mounts.
Mounting Your Animal Companion
In Pathfinder Wrath of the Righteous you can only Mount your Animal Companion if you are one size smaller than it. The size of your character is determined by your Race, and each Animal Companion has their own size which is listed when selecting them. Horses are Large sized, which means that you can be any Race to mount them from the very beginning of the game. But if you choose Beast Rider then you will need to be at least one size smaller than the Animal Companion you choose.
Animal Companions do increase in size as they level up, allowing you to Mount them. When the Smilodon, for example, reaches Level 7 it will grow to Large, increasing its Stats and letting medium sized Races mount it. Currently the only Large sized Mount you can select during Character Creation is a Horse.
Mounted Combat works similarly to regular combat, except you and your Animal Companion move together as one unit. However, once you reach your target you will both attack and take damage independently as if you were 2 different characters, because you are. When playing turn-based you will attack together as if you were one turn.
One particularly great thing about fighting while Mounted is that enemies often tend to attack your Animal Companion first before attacking you, and there are a couple of really great Feats that help prevent your Mount from taking damage.
First is Mounted Combat, which allows you to make a Mobility Check when your Mount is Hit in combat, negating the damage if successful once per round. Second is Indomitable Mount, which works the same way except with Saving Throws. There are also other Feats that greatly benefit Mounted Combat, which I will cover in the Feats section. Note that Mobility is affected by your Armor, so you don’t want to wear too heavy of Armor or you will penalize this.
Another thing I’d like to mention is that you will rarely ever play a “ranged” Cavalier because Animal Companions attack in melee range. Ranged attacks are penalized when firing while threatened, and if you sit back then your Animal Companion cannot attack. You’d be better off playing unmounted if you wish to have an Animal Companion and shoot from range, which is more suited to other Classes like the Ranger.
Cavalier Build | Archetypes (Subclasses)
Cavaliers have 7 Archetypes, as I already mentioned, and these change certain aspects about the Class while at the same time maintaining much of the Class’s structure and identity. In this section I’ll cover what those Archetypes are, what they do, and why you might consider selecting one. First up is Beast Rider.
Presently in Pathfinder Wrath of the Righteous there is no difference in Class Features for the base Cavalier and the Beast Rider, other than being able to choose which Animal Companion you wish to begin the game with and the loss of Heavy Armor Proficiency. This means, if you do not like any of the other archetypes for Cavalier, you should default to this one. You shouldn’t be wearing Heavy Armor anyway, do to the Mobility Check penalty it provides.
Select this archetype if you want to choose a specific Mount, or you can’t decide which to play.
- Choose which Animal Companion you want
- Can Mount the Horse from the very beginning of the game with the majority of Races
- No Heavy Armor Proficiency
This archetype focuses on using a Dog or Wolf companion, and sacrifices their Order to greatly enhance the Dodge Armor Class of their Mount vs. Challenged enemies. Additionally, they can buff the Saving Throw of their choice for their whole party, can use Bull Rush and Overrun more effectively, and gain increased damage against Large or better enemies.
Select this archetype if you don’t mind playing as Halfling, and you are unsure what weapon type you will be using. This archetype is a good blend between support, offense and defense, if you don’t mind being locked into a single Race and you don’t really use your Order buffs.
- Can choose Wolf or Dog during Character Creation
- Can ride your Mount immediately
- Mount is harder to kill than most archetypes
- Has a bit of everything
- Locked to Halfling Race
- Loses access to an Order
- Can only choose Dog or Wolf Companion
This archetype focuses heavily on combat using long reaching weapons like Spears and Tridents, increasing their damage and chance to hit. However, these bonuses are relegated only to a handful of weapon types, curtailing some of the flexibility of the Class. Additionally, they don’t gain the Banner Class Feature, or an Animal Companion, so they are unable to buff their nearby allies passively and won’t be Mounted.
Select this archetype if you plan to use a Spear-like weapon, want to be more effective while using one, and are not worried about buffing your party members. This is a pure DPS archetype that focuses on killing enemies quickly, sacrificing some of their support capabilities and their Animal Companion in the process.
- More effective with Spears and Polearms
- Can move more easily while mounted through difficult terrain
- Gains increased Armor Class against larger enemies, increasing with the size of the enemy
- Half their Cavalier Level is applied to their Knowledge (Arcana) and Lore (Nature) Checks
- Charge Attack is not as effective with other Weapons, and loses increased Threat Range when using them
- Loss of the Banner Class Feature
- No Animal Companion
The Fearsome Leader archetype allows you access to the Dazzling Display Feat, allowing you to demoralize enemies in a huge AoE, which subsequently penalizes nearly all their rolls by -2. Additionally, at Level 9 you will not only debuff enemies, but also boost nearly all rolls of your party by +2. In order to gain this they lose access to their Tactician ability, meaning they are essentially trading buff flexibility for a strong debuff and buff.
Select this archetype if you want to buff and debuff at the same time, and you don’t want to bother with the Tactician Ability or are unfamiliar with Teamwork Feats.
- Decent Debuff in Dazzling Display
- Good Hope is an excellent buff that benefits everyone
- Loses Tactician Class Feature
- Loses Tactician Bonus Feats
- Can only choose Horse Animal Companion
The Gendarme archetype is the pound for pound king of DPS when it comes to the Cavalier, and is arguably the best archetype from mid to late game. Not only to do they deal triple the damage with Charged Attacks (using any Weapon) at level 20, they also gain bonus Combat and Mounted Feats vs. other Cavalier archetypes. Their only drawback is that they lose their Tactician Class Ability, which prevents them from buffing their party a bit better.
Select this archetype if you want to do the most possible DPS with your Cavalier, still be able to passively buff your party with your Banner, and aren’t too picky about which Animal Companion you can Mount. It’s arguably the best Cavalier archetype in the game.
- 2 more Bonus Feats compared to default Cavaliers, and a larger pool to choose from
- Can deal 3x the damage with Charge Attack at Level 20 using any weapon, plus bonus damage
- Loses Tactician Class Feature
- Loses Tactician Bonus Feats
- Can only choose Horse Animal Companion
The Knight of the Wall archetype sacrifices some of their support and offensive capabilities for increased effectiveness with Shields. Their Shield cannot only protect them from Touch and Combat Maneuvers, its AC is added to their Will Saving Throws, further protecting them from many Spells.
Consider selecting this archetype if you are familiar with the Cavalier Class, if you want to be much harder to kill, and if you plan to play some of the time not mounted (since many of the abilities apply even when not Mounted).
- Begin with Shield Focus Feat
- Shields are MUCH more effective, and this applies even when not Mounted
- Less DPS than most Cavaliers
- Lose Tactician Class Feature
- Loses Tactician Bonus Feats
- Cannot use a Shield with Polearms and Spears
- Can only choose Horse Animal Companion
The Standard Bearer archetype sacrifices early access to their Animal Companion, and in exchange they begin the game with the Banner Class Feature instead. They have a more and more effective Banner as the game progresses, which culminates when they reach Level 20. They can also use their Banner to give all allies in range a good amount of temporary Hit Points, preventing many of them from dying or taking damage.
Consider selecting this archetype if you are familiar with the Cavalier, you don’t mind sacrificing access to your Animal Companion early on for better buffs or if you selected a Mount you cannot mount immediately anyway, and you are a fan of passively improving your party.
- Stronger Banner Class Feature
- Less DPS than just about any other Cavalier archetype
- Doesn’t gain Animal Companion until Level 5
- Doesn’t deal increased damage with Charge Attacks and doesn’t have improved Threat Range when using Charge Attacks
- Can only choose Horse Animal Companion
Cavalier Build | Stats & Races
There are 4 Abilities that can be beneficial to Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous Cavalier Builds. Strength increases not only the damage Cavaliers deal, but also their chance to Hit, which is far more important. Constitution increases their Health, as well as their Fortitude Saves. Charisma directly affects their Order’s Abilities, and Dexterity can increase Armor Value, Initiative and Mobility.
Of these Stats Strength should be the highest priority to ensure they connect with their Attack Roles. 16 or 18 is preferred here in order to connect with more Attacks.
After that, it can get a bit muddled depending on what Order you chose, but you will most certainly want some Constitution since you will be on the front lines and will be taking damage. You can get away with as low as 14, because your Mount will often take the brunt of many attacks.
Some Charisma is ideal, since these make many Order Abilities more useful, but isn’t necessary on some Orders that hardly use it. For instance, Order of the Sword only gains a once per day Ability that uses Charisma, so I don’t advise taking any Charisma if you chose this Order. However, both Order of the Lion and Order of the Star use Charisma much more often, and you would be wise to take at least 14 or 16 if you chose either of these.
Dexterity is last, and how much you invest here will likely depend on what you did with Charisma. In Pathfinder Wrath of the Righteous the heavier Armor you wear, the more Armor Check Penalty you receive, which penalizes your Skill Checks that are Strength and Dexterity-based. Since Mobility is a Dexterity-based Skill, and makes it much harder for your Mount to be struck if you have the Mounted Combat Feat (which you should), you don’t want to penalize this any more than you have to. This means you should wear the lightest Armor you feel comfortable with, and that means Dexterity will help boost your Armor Class as well as Mobility via direct investment. Aim for at least 14 here if you can, though 16 would be even better.
Selecting Races that have bonuses to Strength and Charisma is the way to go. These are: Angelkin (Angel-Blooded), Pitborn (Demon-Spawn), Gemsoul (Crystal Oread), and Moroi-Born (Svetocher). By selecting one of these Classes you should be able to reach 16 in both Strength and Charisma, and at least 14 in Constitution and Dexterity looking something like this:
Note that I tried the Kitsune Race with the Vulpine Pounce Feat, but it doesn’t seem to impact anything, at least that I can tell. Wrath of the Righteous’ damage calculations are lacking severely and it is really hard to tell how everything is added together.
There are many good Feats that Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous Cavalier Builds should focus on because there are a whole set of them that benefit them while Mounted, besides the typical ones that are great for martial Classes. Let’s get into these now, and see what they are. Keep in mind you don’t have to take all of these, but these are pretty good recommendations no matter what type of Cavalier you make.
Mounted Combat allows you to attempt a Mobility Check when your Mount is struck in combat, allowing you to negate the damage if you succeed. Note that you can only use this once per round, but it is exceptional at reducing the damage your Mount takes early on in the game.
Spirited Charge increases the damage you deal with Charge Attacks by double. This is fantastic to take early on because you will not have access to Supreme Charge until Level 20. You will use Charge Attacks a lot as a Cavalier, so get this one to help you one shot enemies even more easily.
Weapon Focus increases your Attack Rolls with the selected weapon type by +1. This is great for increasing your chances of landing attacks, and is a staple for most martial Builds.
Indomitable Mount allows you to make a Mobility Check to negate a failed Saving Throw from your Mount. You can only use this once per round, but it’s another Feat that can help keep your Mount alive.
Power Attack increases your damage in exchange for reduced chance to hit. This Feat is very strong and it can drastically speed up your kills if you are facing weaker enemies with lower Armor Class. It’s also required for other Feats, so it’s not a bad choice.
Shield Focus increases the effectiveness of your Shield by +1 AC. Select this Feat if you don’t plan to use a Spear or Polearm, since these are two-handed and cannot be used with a Shield.
Mounted Shield provides your Mount with additional Armor Class based on the Armor Class of your Shield. This is a great way to help protect it if you’re using a Shield, but not all Cavaliers will use Shields, like Disciple of the Pike.
Improved Initiative allows you to go sooner in turn-based combat, and attack more quickly in Real Time with Pause. You’ll use this one each and every fight if you take it.
Cleave allows you to attack an adjacent enemy to the first enemy you are attacking in the same round by taking a -2 AC penalty. This is a great way to deal increased damage, especially since your Mount tends to get attacked instead of you.
Skill Focus Mobility increases your Mobility score by +3, and an additional +3 if you have 10 points in Mobility. Because of Mounted Combat and Indomitable Mount, this can really save your Mount some damage.
Boon Companion increases your Animal Companion’s level as though you were 4 levels higher in a Class that has Animal Companion, but not higher than your total level. You only want to take this Feat if you Multiclass or take a Prestige Class that does NOT have Animal Companion, as your Animal Companion will cease to level up if you do. So for example if you decide to take a few levels of Paladin or something, then it’s worth taking this Feat.
Cavalier Build | Weapons & Armor
Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous Cavalier Builds will differ in what Weapons they use based on the archetypes they are. For instance, Disciples of the Pike will use a Polearm or Spear of some kind most likely in order to get the most benefit from this Class. Others, like the Knight of the Wall will need to use a one-handed Weapon in order to use a Shield, ruling out nearly all Polearm Weapons. I’ll list below what each Archetypes should be using:
- Cavalier: Any Weapon type until level 20, and then swap to Lance-like Weapon
- Beast Rider: Any Weapon type until level 20, and then swap to Lance-like Weapon
- Cavalier of the Paw: Any Weapon type until level 20, and then swap to Lance-like Weapon
- Disciple of the Pike: Polearm, Javelin, Spear, Longspear or Trident
- Fearsome Leader: Any Weapon type until level 20, and then swap to Lance-like Weapon
- Gendarme: Any one-handed Weapon and Shield
- Knight of the Wall: Any one-handed Weapon and Shield
- Standard Bearer: Any one-handed Weapon and Shield
When it comes to Armor it’s tricky because you don’t want to penalize your Mobility with too heavy of Armor, but you need to wear some good Armor. Aim for Light or Medium Armor that can take advantage of your Dexterity Bonus, without causing too much Penalty to your Mobility Checks.
Cavalier Prestige Classes & Multiclassing
Of the 13 Prestige Classes in Pathfinder Wrath of the Righteous, there is only really 1 Prestige Class that makes any sense for the Cavalier and that is Hellknight. Other Prestige Classes are far too restrictive, and there are just too many downsides to advise selecting them.
The reasons to consider Hellknight if you’re playing a Cavalier is because it is rather easy to meet the requirements, they also use Charisma for many of their Abilities, and they can give you Armor Training which reduces your Armor Penalty when wearing heavier Armors. This allows you to gain more Mobility, further protecting your Mount while also protecting yourself.
The downside is that you as you stop gaining Levels in Cavalier your Animal Companion will cease to gain Levels, your Challenge ability will not increase in damage, your Banner will stop getting more effective, and you will cease gaining Order abilities. So you’ll really have to weigh what’s more important to you.
- Can use Smite Evil
- Many Hellknight Abilities use Charisma
- Armor Training helps reduce Armor Check Penalty, increasing Mobility
- More Resistances
- Animal Companion doesn’t increase in Level when you take Hellknight Levels
- Challenge doesn’t improve when you take Hellknight Levels
- Banner ceases to improve when you take Hellknight Levels
- You won’t get Supreme Charge
Besides Hellknight, the most obvious choice to take Classes in besides Cavalier is Paladin, for similar reasons. They have many Abilities that get stronger with Charisma, and they can heal their Animal Companions with Lay on Hands. However, they suffer from the same issues as Hellknight. You don’t gain Animal Companion Levels, Challenge and Banner stop getting better, and you lose out on Supreme Charge at level 20. If you decide to Multiclass, I suggest not taking more than about 2 or 3 levels of another Class, that way your Cavalier Class Features are still potent, and you only lose out on Supreme Challenge.
In Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous, Cavaliers have excellent burst damage using their Charge Attack, so make sure to use it as often as possible. This means you need a clear line of sight between you and your target, and that includes friendlies. Keep your Cavalier at the front of your formation so that it can Charge the second combat begins.
Because of the way Charge Attack works, you’ll likely have to strike the front liners of the opposing forces. These are usually the most Armored, so you need a very high Attack Roll in order to hit them. Make sure you have enough Attack Roll modifiers, so that you always connect on your Charge Attacks (turn off Power Attack if needed). They are deadly and you don’t want to miss and waste them.
Making your Mount tanky is your number one priority so that you can attack away without taking damage. Make sure to take Feats when your Animal Companion levels up that make it harder to kill, such as Barding Feats, Toughness, and Diehard.
Lastly, pay attention to the weapon type you are planning to use because most Polearm type weapons are Two-Handed, and don’t allow you to use a Shield at the same time. If you aren’t paying attention you might waste Feats on Weapon Focus for Weapons you didn’t want, or take Shield Focus when you can’t use one.
Stay tuned for more Pathfinder Wrath of the Righteous Class Guides, as we take a look at all 10 new Classes. And be sure to check out the Official Wrath of the Righteous Wiki if you have more questions about the game!