Pathfinder Kingmaker Builds: Jaethal the Grim Reaper

Last updated on October 22nd, 2018

In this Pathfinder Kingmaker Guide we will take a look at Jaethal, an undead elf. She is a standard Inquisitor, a divine caster class with lots of versatility. This build will however, focus on the simplest of routes and that is using 20 levels in Inquisitor and impersonating the Grim Reaper with a Scythe as our preferred weapon. Because Jaethal is Undead, she has different features, which include being able to heal from negative energy spells such as Inflict wounds, while taking damage from positive energy spells like Cure Wounds. This build guide is aimed for beginners and for anyone else that needs their memory refreshed regarding certain mechanics.

Pathfinder Kingmaker Builds – Jaethal

This build focuses on melee combat and the many buffs Inquisitors have at their disposal, that can benefit themselves and allies either through Feats or spells. Although not as good as some other classes DPS-wise, we can work around it a bit by choosing DPS oriented Feats. Before we delve into Feat choices however, let us have a look at which abilities Inquisitors get automatically.

  • Stern Gaze: Received morale bonus on all Intimidation and Perception checks equal to half of her level.
  • Death Domain: Received Bleeding Touch at level 1 and the Death Embrace passive at level 8, that prevents her from being damaged by positive energy and lets her heal from channeled negative energy.
  • Judgment: Judgment adds bonuses to offense or defense, depending on which one you choose. These bonuses last until the end of combat. At level 8 you can use 2 Judgments at once and at level 16 that number rises to 3.
  • Undying: Raises her back after combat ends with a small portion of her health if she falls in battle.
  • Cunning Initiative (lvl 2): Adds Wisdom modifier to initiative checks.
  • Solo Tactics (lvl 3): An amazing feat that lets Inquisitors benefit from Teamwork Feats even if an adjacent ally does not have that same Teamwork Feat. To get bonuses from Teamwork Feats simply have any ally positioned adjacently to you.
  • Bane (lvl 5): Adds 4-24 damage and adds +2 to weapon enchantment against certain foes.
  • Stalwart (lvl 11): Makes every attack targeting Will and Fortitude that usually does halved damage on a successful saving throw, do no damage instead. This does not work if you’re wearing Heavy Armor.
  • True Judgment (lvl 20): When this ability is selected, your next attack can insta-kill an enemy if they fail a Fortitude roll. Attack needs to hit first for True Judgment to activate Fortitude roll. It can be used only once on the same creature. This ability is very useful versus enemies with low Fortitude, such as Mages and Archers usually.

Attributes

Jaethal has a balanced attribute spread that makes her great for multiclassing. For the purposes of making this build as simple and as effective as possible, we will add all our additional points to STR to get more bonuses to damage and attack rolls. She already has +3 from WIS which is enough and it helps to hit with True Judgment because it adds WIS modifier to attack roll.

Skills

Due to Stern Gaze feat, I would recommend pumping points into Persuasion and Perception, which can help a lot in conversations as well as to spot traps, enemies and other hidden things. Persuasion is especially important if you take the Dazzling Display Feat. Mobility is always a good choice for melee characters in order to prevent Attacks of Opportunity while running around. Jaethal has bonuses to Lore (Religion) and Knowledge (Arcana), so it would be wise to level those two as well.

Feats

Inquisitors get an extra Teamwork Feats every 3 levels and all of those bonuses add up, making Inquisitor quite powerful when adjacent to an ally. When leveling up Jaethal, focus on choosing normal Feats as there are not that many great ones for this build outside of these. As for which to choose, we are going to pick everything that can help us to improve her DPS. I have included Vital Strike but it seems to be bugged causing it not to trigger at all. This is expected to be fixed in a future patch, but if you do not feel like dealing with Vital Strike go for Extra Bane and Dodge.

Important Feats

  • Cleave & Great Cleave: Upon hitting an enemy you make additional attacks against adjacent enemies. Great Cleave upgrades it so that you can strike multiple adjacent enemies with a single Cleave.
  • Vital Strike & Improved Vital Strike: Unfortunately this is bugged currently and it seems to never happen. It should double the damage from a single strike, while Improved Vital Strike should triple it. Once it is patched, it will be useful.
  • Cleaving Finish & Improved Cleaving Finish: Upon killing an enemy with a standard melee attack, you can make additional attacks against enemies within reach. This is automatic.
  • Weapon Focus Scythe: Adds 1 to attack rolls with Scythe.
  • Improved Critical Scythe: Increases Crit Range with Scythe from 20 to 19-20.
  • Power Attack: +2 Damage and -1 to attack roll. Increases bonus to DMG by 50 % if wielding a 2h weapon, which we are.
  • Combat Reflexes: Increases the amount of times you can perform Attacks of Opportunity based on your DEX modifier, which is in our case +2.
  • Outflank: +4 to attack roll when attacking the same enemy as your adjacent ally. Scoring Critical Hits gives your ally Attack of Opportunity against that same enemy.
  • Precise Strike: Adds 1-6 Damage when hitting the same enemy as your ally.
  • Seize the Moment: When adjacent ally confirms a critical hit against an enemy, you get an Attack of Opportunity against that same enemy.
  • Back to Back: +2 to AC against an enemy that is flanking you.

Cleave is very good and fun to use.

Spells

Inquisitors have a wide variety of spells, but with this build we are going to stick with Buffing and helpful team spells. Offensive spells will not be as good with this build because we are focused on melee combat anyway, which requires a different Feat and Attribute spread. Here are my choices but feel free to add whatever you want if you feel like it would be beneficial to your build.

Harm is amazing for any build because it does a lot of damage even if an enemy has a successful Saving Throw

With these spells you can buff yourself and allies, remove negative status effects, heal yourself and do damage with Harm, which always does at least half of  the maximum damage even on a successful Will saving throw. Some of the buffing spells will overwrite themselves, but you will still keep some bonuses. You should always cast before combat starts: Freedom of Movement, Spell Resistance, Stoneskin, Heroism, Divine Power and Righteous Might. That will increase your damage and survivability dramatically. Stoneskin requires Diamond Dust to be cast, which can be purchased from Clerics at the capital. Dispel Magic is amazing because it removes beneficial effects such as Concealment from enemies, making them much easier targets.

Gear

Scythe is the favored weapon of Jaethal’s¬†Deity and it fits the Grim Reaper theme. Deity Favored Weapons do not add any bonuses to attack rolls or damage while using said weapon, but you get automatic proficiency with it.

Scythe has an insane critical hit modifier of x4, meaning if you crit, the enemy dies in most cases. The problem is that it has 20 as its Crit Range, meaning it doesn’t Crit as often as you’d like, however this can be improved to both 19 and 20 rolls with the¬†Improved Critical Scythe Feat. The scythe is optional and can be switched for other 2H weapons.

Strength is our primary attribute so something like Belt of Giant Strength is a perfect choice because it stacks with Righteous Might bonuses. Adding any item or buff that increases Wisdom is also a good choice, because the Wisdom modifier is added to True Judgment.

Armor should be the best medium armor you can get. Arcane Spell Failure does not affect Jaethal because Inquisitors are divine casters and armor check penalty is not that detrimental. Medium armor offers a good amount of AC, without restricting her too much.

Summary

This build makes Jaethal a really good melee inquisitor due to buffs and teamwork bonuses. Jaethel should always be positioned adjacently to any melee ally, so that she can get bonuses from any teamwork Feat she has, thanks to Solo Tactics.

Before a fight, buff her with spells like Resist Energy, Freedom of Movement, Spell Resistance, Stoneskin, Heroism, Divine Power, Righteous Might and Divine Favor. When the fight starts, activate Judgments Justice, Destruction, Smite and Bane. Justice is the best Judgment for this build, because it adds +1 sacred bonus to all attack rolls (up to 5 at level 20), and at level 10 this bonus is doubled for confirming Critical Hits. If you are level 20 do not forget to activate True Judgment to insta-kill enemies. Note that any Judgment needs to be activated in order to use True Judgment.

After the lengthy buffing and activating of all necessary bonuses at the beginning of the fight, it is time to position yourself next to an ally and start killing everything. There are many on hit and on kill bonuses like additional attacks through Cleaving Finish but to simplify everything, use Cleave versus groups of enemies that are adjacent to one another and use a standard attacks against one enemy.

It would be wise to cast Harm on any enemy since it does a lot of damage even if enemy succeeds at a saving throw, which they most likely will. After the fight Restoration, Remove Negative Effects and healing spells come into play to get the party back to a healthy status.

Grim Reaper Jaethal cleaving enemies


More¬†Pathfinder Kingmaker¬†content is coming soon, including Class and Build Guides, so stay tune! You may be interested to read our Tower Shield Tank Valerie Build Guide¬†and our¬†Beginner’s Guide. In the meantime you can check out the¬†wiki¬†for all your Pathfinder needs.

Pretty much born with gamepad in my hands and been gaming ever since. Love for RPGs started with Fallout 1 and 2. Free time is used for more gaming, training, watching MMA, soccer, movies and moaning about today's world and the stuff that kids do these days. What do they do besides phones and CoD anyway?

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