Oh no, spoilers! Quick, if you haven’t read it yet go back to part 1.
Unlike the fighter, who has primary build paths, and the ranger, who is usually juggling two, champion really doesn’t have any kind of “path” their build goes down. Their feats trend less towards defining a fighting style and more about collecting and improving on an eclectic array of abilities, most of which don’t lean on each other. You can specialize in Focus spells, ignore them outright, or pick up one or two here and there, and all three are perfectly valid. It’s a fun dichotomy that we’ll see more of later down the line, but for right now, let’s focus up.
1st Level Feats
Deity’s Domain (***) There are a few strong gems in the domain options, but since you’re gonna prioritize Lay on Hands for that focus point you’ll want a more situational choice like Word of Truth.
Ranged Reprisal (***) An alright concession for ranged paladins, but ranged paladin is still bad because you still need to be close enough to proc it to begin with. The real benefit is in the second half. Grab yourself a reach weapon and you can now hit anyone who procs Retributive.
Unimpeded Step (**) A situational upgrade at best.
Weight of Guilt (***) Turn your Weight of Guilt on casters, or make it easier for your casters to target their Will saves.
Everstand Stance (LOCG) (***) Sword and shield, or two-hander? Por que no los dos?
2nd Level Feats
Divine Grace (***) I’ll be honest, I still don’t like it based on the reaction cost, I just think it’s the only general option you have at level 2.
Dragonslayer Oath (**) How often are you fighting dragons.
Fiendsbane Oath (**) A little better because fiends are common higher level enemies, but still campaign dependent.
Shining Oath (**) Same as Fiendsbane.
Vengeful Oath (**) You’re using your primary healing tool as a middling single target nuke. You have a single target nuke already, it’s called your weapon.
4th Level Feats
Aura of Courage (****) You basically become immune to frightened 1, and anything that applies more than frightened 1 you’re going to aid your allies significantly as well.
Divine Health (**) Disease is bad, but it’s not common enough and it’s fairly easy enough to handle most of the time that I don’t think it’s worth a class feat.
Mercy (**) Situational effect imo. You’re better off taking Aura of Courage to handle ally fear.
Everstand Strike (LOCG) (***) If you’re doing Everstand Stance this is your fourth level feat. The action economy is too good. Use it as your second attack, raise shield as third if you miss.
6th Level Feats
Attack of Opportunity (****) Your goal is generally going to be to keep the bad guys from attacking your squishies, and this is a damn good way to keep them away from the squishies.
Litany Against Wrath (****) Even a success is going to deal a solid chunk of damage, not even accounting for good weakness, and on a fail or critical fail it’s even bigger.
Loyal Warhorse (***) Pretty mandatory if you took Steed. Not as good as other Mature companion stuff since your mount doesn’t get a free action.
Shield Warden (**) The thing is you could do this, or you could do your champion’s reaction, which also reduces the damage your ally is taking (albeit by less) but also has a second effect.
Smite Evil (****) A good way to keep a powerful enemy’s attention on you. 4-6 extra damage is roughly an entire extra average die, plus you’ll be hitting good weaknesses.
8th Level Feats
Advanced Deity’s Domain (***) I’ll be honest, I haven’t seen the advanced domains in play yet or analyzed them yet, but even if you only take this for the extra Focus point it’ll be worth it.
Greater Mercy (***) Okay here we go, mercy’s getting useful now.
Heal Mount (***) An extra 4 hp healed per spell level is nothing to sneeze at I tell you what.
Quick Block (****) If you took Shield Ally this is an absolute must.
Second Ally (***) Generally I think you’re going to use this to grab Blade Ally if you took Shield or Steed, since Shield is a fighting style unto itself and you’ll be a feat behind for several levels if you take a Steed now.
Sense Evil (**) Campaign dependent, but if you like the flavor and miss pinging everyone you meet with detect evil then be my guest.
10th Level Feats
Devoted Focus (****) Double your out of combat healing output and give yourself more juice in the tank.
Imposing Destrier (***) Still mandatory progression, unless you want a dead horse.
Litany Against Sloth (***) It’s kinda weird that your railing against sloth makes them more slothful but okay. Trading an action to negate their reaction and potentially lose actions of their own seems reasonable.
Radiant Blade Spirit (***) Getting into the good runes now.
Shield of Reckoning (****) Oh lordy, suddenly Shield Warden seems good (since you need it to have the triggering attack qualify for your Shield Block).
Affliction Mercy (***) Another solid upgrade for mercy. Poisons suuuuuuck.
Aura of Faith (***) If you never find yourself fighting enemies with a good weakness this is meh, but if you do, oh sweet lord is this good.
Blade of Justice (***) So to clarify, this is not only an extra two weapon damage dice, it’s also applying your divine smite and exalt effects. The good damage is less important since if that’s your goal then Aura of Faith will do nicely.
Champion’s Sacrifice (***) Arguably better than your reaction for protecting squishies in the back, given the extra range and heightened effect that also applies to riders.
Divine Wall (***) Make it even harder for enemies to get past you.
Lasting Doubt (***) A solid buff to your Glimpse of Redemption.
Liberating Stride (**) Not a terrible upgrade for Liberating Step but you have better options at this level.
Anchoring Aura (**) Very much situational.
Aura of Life (***) Good even if you’re not usually against undead, because evil clerics are a thing and they suuuuuuuuuuck.
Aura of Righteousness (**) Evil damage isn’t actually that common and it’ll only help your Good allies, so campaign dependent.
Aura of Vengeance (****) A very solid buff to your exalt, especially if you took Blade of Justice.
Divine Reflexes (****) More reactions is great when you’re starving for them.
Litany of Righteousness (***) An excellent combo with Aura of Faith, particularly good because there is no save.
Wyrmbane Aura (***) Only generally useful if you invested heavily in Charisma or you’re fighting a lot of dragons, but if either of those things is true, yes please.
Auspicious Mount (***) You’ve had the weakest animal companion upgrades so far, but you toughed it out and now your horse is awesome.
Instrument of Zeal (**) I don’t generally go for things that only apply on a crit, and “critically hitting a foe with Smite Evil” actually doesn’t apply since Smite Evil isn’t an attack. Clerical error, obviously, but an important one for things like Society or bad GMs.
Shield of Grace (***) Be the tank you are meant to be.
Celestial Form (*****) Permanent fly speed, sold. To my knowledge this is the only way to get that as a PC currently.
Ultimate Mercy (***) Keep a lay on hands in your pocket at all times here.
Celestial Mount (****) Have you ever wanted the best horse in the universe? Well here you go.
Radiant Blade Master (**) Compared to the other allies this feels mediocre.
Shield Paragon (***) By this point you shouldn’t have to worry about your shield breaking, but the extra action economy is absolutely worth it.
Champion overall has a lot of amazing class feats, but early on? Not quite so much. You have plenty of room to dip your toes into an archetype here.
Alchemist Multiclass (*)
Dedication (*) Poorly synergizing ability score for what will likely be a very small number of bad mutagens and elixirs every day that you have to keep investing feats to make even a little worthwhile.
Basic Concoction (**) Familiar and Poison Resistance are good choices here.
Quick Alchemy (*) Making your infused reagents even less efficient, I love it.
Advanced Concoction (**) Most of the decent options either work off of bombs or Quick Alchemy, so you’re mostly just looking at stuff that affects mutagens.
Expert Alchemy (**) If you’re going this direction you should take the advancement feats anyway.
Master Alchemy (**) Big same.
Overall: There are classes that would like an alchemist multiclass. You are not one of them.
Barbarian Multiclass (***)
Dedication (***) There’s something amusing about this given that these are these classes weren’t compatible in PF1, but you should have a solid AC to deal with the penalty from rage and the damage boost will be really nice. The only downside is adding even more to your anathema, but that’s what Fury Instinct is for.
Barbarian Resiliency (X) Not for you.
Basic Fury (**) Moment of Clarity for when you really need a Lay on Hands or Sudden Charge for quickly getting in your enemies’ grills.
Advanced Fury (**) A lot of compelling options here, approach these selections as though you were a barbarian. The main issue is competing with your higher level champion feats, which always have really strong options to them.
Instinct Ability (***) All of your instincts here are good options except probably Animal.
Juggernaut’s Fortitude (X) You already have Juggernaut, so you don’t qualify.
Overall: If nothing else, rage is a really nice addition to your toolkit.
Bard Multiclass (***)
Dedication (***) Prerequisites you like, although bard doesn’t have the best cantrip options for you.
Basic Bard Spellcasting (***) Next month will be the spells guide, which will include a rating for “martial/caster multiclass,” and I will link that then. For now, suffice to say take some of the very good buffs available.
Basic Muse’s Whispers (***) Any of the basic muse feats will do nicely, although Bardic Lore is less good for you than others. The 2nd level options aren’t as good.
Advanced Muse’s Whispers (***) Inspire Defense is on brand while Dirge of Doom is actually the best composition. If you take either of these then I wouldn’t grab Inspirational Performance.
Counter Perform (**) Burns a reaction and a focus point for a marginal defensive benefit compared to your other reaction options.
Inspirational Performance (***) A fine use of a single action per turn, although you probably won’t want to double up on this and Smite Evil.
Occult Breadth (***) More spells per day.
Expert Bard Spellcasting (***) As basic.
Master Bard Spellcasting (**) As basic, but not as good since it jostles with high level champion feats and only gives you two spell levels instead of three.
Overall: If you’re looking to multiclass into a caster, I think bard is your best choice.
Cleric Multiclass (**)
Dedication (***) Not as ideal as bard but you still want Wisdom, and you’re already committed to a deity and their anathema.
Basic Cleric Spellcasting (***) As bard, but with better scaling since you have native divine proficiency.
Basic Dogma (*) You can get your basic domain power from champion feats, you already have the equivalent of Deadly Simplicity, and everything else modifies your heal spell or font.
Advanced Dogma (*) Hey look more stuff that affects heal or harm or is edged out by champion feats.
Divine Breadth (***) As bard.
Expert Cleric Spellcasting (***) As bard.
Master Cleric Spellcasting (**) As bard.
Overall: If you’re looking for divine casting, this isn’t the place to find it. You get the spells, but no feat choices.
Druid Multiclass (**)
Dedication (**) More Wisdom based, but now you totally are adding an anathema. While it only says you’re adding your order’s anathema, your mileage will vary wildly for tables. I for one think it would be dumb if main class druids weren’t allowed to teach people Druidic but multiclass druids were, and if your GM is like me, that also means you’ve been banned from metal armor.
Basic Druid Spellcasting (***) As bard.
Basic Wilding (**) You can snag an adorable leshy familiar, poison resistance, or Wild Shape. Wild Shape is cool, but competes with Lay on Hands and Litanies for your focus.
Order Spell (**) More competition for your focus, and unfortunately most of them are inferior to other options (both goodberry and heal animal pale next to LoH, and wild morph is honestly pretty inferior to wild shape and needs to take it as well regardless.
Advanced Wilding (**) A lot of options, but most of them modify Wild Shape, spellcasting, or are just more flavorful and situational than strong.
Primal Breadth (***) As bard.
Expert Druid Spellcasting (***) As bard.
Master Druid Spellcasting (**) As bard.
Overall: Overall, not a strong addition, and if you want primal magic you’re probably better off going sorcerer.
Fighter Multiclass (***)
Dedication (*) You really don’t get anything out of it and the dual prereqs hurt for a heavy armor character.
Basic Maneuver (****) You get a lot of really good options in first and second level feats for fighter, even taking them at fourth.
Fighter Resilience (X) Not for you.
Opportunist (***) Basically you can take this two levels earlier, which is actually very nice because level 4 is less competitive than level 6.
Advanced Maneuver (***) You’re still competing with the really good higher level champion feats, but I would actually call many of these competitive, as they add a lot of combat options for you.
Diverse Weapon Expert (*) Technically you do get something out of this in the form of trained advanced weapons, it’s just not anything good.
Overall: The dedication is awful, but if you have the prerequisite Dex then it’s legitimately be worth the feat tax to get at some of those tasty feats or an earlier AoO.
Monk Multiclass (***)
Dedication (**) Another bad prereq but at least you get something for it, powerful fist is needed for anyone looking to play a punchy character. This is actually ideal if you’re the madman who wants to go unarmored champion.
Basic Kata (***) If you’re unarmored you can work with any of the stances, otherwise ki spells actually feel competitive with your other Focus options and Brawling Focus will get you past that pesky “I don’t have most critical specializations” problem you have.
Monk Resiliency (X) Not for you.
Advanced Kata (**) Less strong options for competitiveness, although if you took Mountain Stance you should take Mountain Stronghold to make better use of that Dex you got stuck with.
Monk Moves (**) Unarmored champions benefit, armored champions do not.
Monk’s Flurry (****) This is great because of Smite Evil and Aura of Faith, both of which reward more attacks in a round.
Perfection’s Path (***) Grab some master Reflex saves.
Overall: So basically, this is a multiclass you take if you’re aiming for a very specific type of character, and nothing else. That being said, if you want that type of character, it’s going to be pretty good.
Ranger Multiclass (**)
Dedication (**) A mediocre prereq, and an action you don’t get much out of because most of its power is in the Ranger’s Edge that you don’t get.
Basic Hunter’s Trick (***) Twin Takedown shares space with Flurry of Blows for “why you take this archetype.” Quick Draw is also good.
Ranger Resiliency (X) Not for you.
Advanced Hunter’s Trick (**) Nothing spectacular. Scout’s Warning is a bump to initiative, but that’s about it before you get edged out by champion feats.
Master Spotter (***) A welcome bump to your Perception.
Overall: Mostly mediocre, but if you want to do two-weapon fighting I’d recommend it just for Twin Takedown.
Rogue Multiclass (***)
Dedication (***) So if you’re going this route you’ve probably committed to Dexpion. I disagree, but alright. In that case, you get some good skills plus a flexible one, so that’s fine.
Basic Trickery (***) Trap Finder shores up your perception, Minor Magic lets you pretend you did a caster dedication, Quick Draw is good content.
Sneak Attacks (**) An extra 1d6 on some of your attacks isn’t worth a feat I don’t think.
Advanced Trickery (**) Gang Up and Light Step are good, but not great.
Skill Mastery (***) Skills skills skills skills skills. Free bumps to master and expert are huge, compared to free trained that’s dime a dozen.
Uncanny Dodge (***) Just completely noselling an entire debuff is pretty huge.
Evasiveness (***) And with that you have master in all saves. Congratulations.
Overall: Feat sniping selection is sparse, but just about every other option you have here is solid. If you want to be Dex based I almost automatically recommend at least the Dedication.
Sorcerer Multiclass (***)
Dedication (***) As bard. A divine bloodline is technically the superior option but any will do nicely.
Basic Sorcerer Spellcasting (***) As bard.
Basic Blood Potency (**) Familiar is a good choice as usual for the Focus battery, but that’s pretty much it on your options here.
Basic Bloodline Spell (**) I will always stan dragon claws or glutton’s jaws, but otherwise, I don’t find it worth the focus.
Advanced Blood Potency (**) Bespell Weapon can give you some extra damage after casting a spell, and Bloodline Resistance is quiet but very solid even for the level you get it at. Otherwise, meh.
Bloodline Breadth (***) As bard.
Expert Sorcerer Spellcasting (***) As bard.
Master Sorcerer Spellcasting (**) As bard.
Overall: If you want a divine caster, I would personally go with sorcerer over cleric for the Charisma synergy and the actual existence of feats you might want to take. Here’s hoping oracle ends up even better.
Wizard Multiclass (**)
Dedication (**) Ew, Int.
Arcane School Spell () Charming words is a great third-action debuff while protective ward can potentially prevent damage that you no longer have to heal with LoH.
Basic Arcana (**) You have no options here that I would call good other than Familiar.
Basic Wizard Spellcasting (***) As bard.
Advanced Arcana (**) Spell Penetration can help your Litanies land, but otherwise there’s not much.
Arcane Breadth (***) As bard.
Expert Wizard Spellcasting (***) As bard.
Master Wizard Spellcasting (**) As bard.
Overall: Look at the end of the day you’re probably more of a Cha person than an Int person, so, like, arcane sorcerer if that’s what you want.
Aldori Duelist (LOWG) (***)
Dedication (***) A good skill rank and scaling proficiency with an advanced weapon, nice. Grab Blade Ally for this route, because it does not care about your shield.
Aldori Parry (***) Your equivalent to “raising a shield.”
Duelist’s Edge (***) A nice boost to initiative and potentially to action economy.
Aldori Riposte (**) Competes with your champion reaction.
Unnerving Prowess (***) Intimidating champion is fine, although I’m not normally big on things only proccing on a crit.
Saving Slash (**) More competition for your reaction. You’re going to be crit less often than others, and you’re a beefy champion with lay on hands, you can take it.
Overall: Aldori duelist is there to let you fulfill the fantasy of, well, a duelist, and it does so well. A solid choice if you want to go free-hand.
Firebrand Braggart (LOCG) (***)
Dedication (**) I think this action is weird and the fact that the penalty lasts so much longer than the bonus makes it feel not worthwhile to me.
Boaster’s Challenge (***) This feat I actually love. Since it lasts for a full extra turn, you can drop this on one turn, Smite Evil on the next, and be rocking a crazy big static damage modifier.
Daring Act (***) You don’t have a native method of avoiding reactions aside from litany of sloth, so this is a good, non-focus-burning alternative with some added benefits.
Bravo’s Determination (***) It doesn’t actually compete with your champion’s reaction because you can’t use your champion’s reaction if you’re unconscious.
Great Boaster (**) All the same problems I have with the dedication.
Daring Flourish (***) This is just a straight up upgrade to Daring Act and makes the action economy so much better.
Demanding Challenge (***) And a boost to your Boaster’s Challenge.
Daredevil’s Gambit (**) You know me, I don’t like things that only function on a crit.
Overall: A lot of really great feats here that can boost your own abilities, and also feels really fun to use.
Hellknight Armiger (LOWG) (***)
Dedication (***) No mechanical prereqs, and it gives you some resistance to mental damage and a good skill.
Ardent Armiger (**) Very situationally useful, and also, you’re a PC, no one can make you do anything with a skill check.
Diabolic Certitude (**) Value scales with how often you deal with devils, but since you get free Hell Lore it’s actually not bad if you do so often.
Mortification (**) With this you can double up on physical resistances when you add in your armor specialization.
Armiger’s Mobility (*****) Oh hell freaking yes (pun absolutely not intended but I’m keeping it). Erase the last downside of heavy armor and go wild.
Order Training (LOCG) (***) Shackles of Law, Dedication to the Five and Righteous Resistance are all solid.
Advanced Order Training (LOCG) (***) Blessing of the Five, Spiritual Disruption, Silence Heresy and Seek Injustice are all also solid. To that end, Godclaw and Pyre are probably the best orders.
Hellknight Order Cross-Training (LOCG) (***) See Order Training.
Overall: The original feats were kinda mediocre, but Armiger’s Mobility and the Order abilities are all strong choices to take down this tree.
Hellknight (LOCG) (**)
Dedication (**) You’re rocking an expert skill, a slight bonus to your armor specialization, and +1 to Intimidation. Not bad, but not great.
Sense Chaos (**) As Sense Evil, but less useful.
Blade of Law (**) Legitimately take Blade of Justice instead.
Hell’s Armaments (X) Gives you nothing.
Overall: A very poor upgrade to a very solid archetype.
Hellknight Signifier (LOCG) (X)
Overall: You don’t qualify for Signifier, if you want to go into it you’ll have to do heavy multiclassing shenanigans that are beyond the scope of this guide.
Knight Reclaimant (LOCG) (**)
Dedication (**) At some point you’ll be making saves against undead, but the question is, is it often enough to spend a class feat on?
Invoke the Crimson Oath (***) This is a really badass focus spell that will work on anyone but absolutely blow up any undead with a positive weakness.
Survivor of Desolation (*) What an incredibly specific thing. Too specific. Way too specific.
Blade of the Crimson Oath (**) Depends how often you fight undead. If you took Blade Ally, it becomes 1 star, because you could just take Blade of Justice instead.
Reaper of Repose (**) Wow so much that only works on undead.
Overall: If your campaign is themed around undead, then this is a four star archetype, but for general purposes, only two stars.
Knight Vigilant (LOCG) (**)
Dedication (**) A small bonus, but not a bad one. It’ll help your tanking, at the very least.
Unshakable Idealism (***) Aura of Courage will only help you against frightened, not against fleeing, so this is a good way to keep yourself on the front lines and even make yourself an enticing target.
Endure Death’s Touch (**) Campaign dependent, scales in value with the undead you face.
Aegis of Arnisant (**) Unfortunately, Pathfinder is not an MMO where the bad guy telegraphs the attack that’s coming your way so you know to put this up next round. The action economy isn’t worth it.
Knight in Shining Armor (X) Gives you nothing.
Overall: Cool, but not good. Unshakable Idealism is the only thing worth picking up here.
Lastwall Sentry (LOWG) (****)
Dedication (***) Reactive Shield is a decent pickup, if competitive for your reaction.
Eye of Ozem (***) Your Perception could use the boost, and the extra bonus while scouting is also great.
Necromantic Resistance (***) Harm is a necromancy spell and also the biggest single target nuke in the game, which every evil cleric has. You want.
Grave Sense (**) As Evil Sense.
Necromantic Tenacity (*****) Remember what I said about harm? No sell it completely. There are also a lot of other really nasty necromancy effects and really you’re kicking an entire school of magic in the teeth and that’s just awesome.
Lastwall Warden (**) If you’re doing this you might as well take Shield Warden instead so you qualify for later feats.
Overall: Really, really good, better if you’re in an undead heavy campaign or took Shield Ally but really Necromantic Tenacity and Eye of Ozem are worth the investment on their own.
Lion Blade (LOWG) (**)
Dedication (**) A very specific bonus plus a free rank in Deception. Not bad, not great.
Lost in the Crowd (**) Designed for stealthy characters.
Crowd Mastery (**) The problem here is what your GM defines as a “crowd” in combat.
Expeditious Advance (**) It wants you in light armor for one, but if you’ve gone that route then bump to three stars.
Spy’s Countermeasures (**) Very thematically cool, although it does require you to Identify Magic which isn’t quite your strong suit.
Flicker (***) A nice defensive buff for yourself.
Overall: Lion Blade was very much designed for character types that you are very likely not.
Living Monolith (LOWG) (***)
Dedication (***) Basically, you’re never going to bleed out.
Ka Stone Ritual (***) Self-cast enlarge is neat. I’ve decided to ignore the prerequisite, it’s on you and your GM to make that work.
Stone Blood (***) Persistent bleed damage is actually fairly common, so dealing with it 25% less is good content.
Fortified Flesh (***) The main issue here is that it clashes with your armor specialization but, like, whatever.
Attunement to Stone (**) The tremorsense just exists to help pinpoint an invisible enemy’s location, and meld into stone is meh. The real benefit here is another use of your ka stone.
Judgment of the Monolith (***) Two very useful if situational new uses for your ka stone, plus another use of it per day.
Stone Communion (***) The walls now have ears.
Overall: Man, my opinion on this archetype has really turned around with more experience with the game. I’ll be going back and editing my views in past guides.
Magaambyan Attendant and Halcyon Speaker (LOCG) (*)
Overall: I’m gonna save us both some time here. This archetype chain is accessible without being a caster, and I have it on good authority that it’s meant to be, but you really don’t get much value unless you’re a caster.
Magic Warrior (LOWG) (**)
Dedication (**) Talk about an anathema. The only thing you’re really getting is the +1 against divination.
Magic Warrior Aspect (**) Boost your speed and senses for five minutes, but at the cost of a Focus point, and it doesn’t even have the courtesy to increase your focus pool.
Magic Warrior Transformation (**) The same problems we had with Wild Shape back in Druid dedication apply here.
Nameless Anonymity (**) Pretty meh to be honest.
Overall: The first time a class actually has a focus pool and this is still not a good archetype. Sad. Jostles for your focus points and there’s really no compelling reason, especially since you’ll have to take Litanies to increase your focus pool anyway.
Pathfinder Agent (LOWG) (***)
Dedication (***) Oh boy, untrained proficiency 0 at level 2. Very nice.
Careful Explorer (***) You’re probably gonna be Guarding or Scouting or something along those lines, so this frees you up from the need to Search.
Deft Cooperation (**) Aiding is eh.
Thorough Reports (**) You’re not usually going to be the knowledge monkey.
Wayfinder Resonance Tinker (***) A free cantrip from any of the lists is legit. Also, I’ve played enough PFS to know the value of people not knowing you’re a Pathfinder.
Forced Entry (LOCG) (**) Just buy a crowbar. Only matters if you regularly want to break into somewhere without anyone knowing.
Recognize Threat (LOCG) (**) Still probably not the knowledge monkey.
Everyone Duck! (LOCG) (***) If you are the trap disabling person, this is a decent way to just be like “screw it, we can take a hit from a trap.”
Educated Assessment (LOCG) (**) Still not a knowledge monkey.
Overall: Even just the dedication is worth it, but there’s plenty of extra options if you want to free yourself up for another dedication later.
Red Mantis Assassin (LOWG) (X)
Overall: See you guys in July when this is possible.
Runescarred (LOWG) (***)
Dedication (**) Not as good as an arcane sorcerer dedication, but not bad, particularly with no ability score prereq. You know the usual suspects by now.
Spell Runes (***) Scales just as well as multiclassing, although you don’t have the option to heighten or get Breadth.
Living Rune (**) Pretty much as valuable as the magic tattoo you want to pick up.
Warding Rune (***) Disregard Divine Grace and just get a permanent +2 against a school. You probably want to pick necromancy, evocation or enchantment.
Greater Spell Runes (***) Actually scales a little better than multiclassing.
Overall: If you want some spells but don’t want to deal with actually being a caster, this is a fine alternative.
Scrollmaster (LOCG) (**)
Dedication (*) The only feat in the game that’s made completely irrelevant by a pad of paper and a pen in real life.
Lore Seeker (***) Three very useful innate spells.
Unravel Mysteries (**) Basically only useful if you Decipher Writing a lot, and that’s not really the champion’s usual wheelhouse.
Font of Knowledge (**) Not the knowledge monkey. If you are well invested in a knowledge skill it’s not a poor choice, but not a great one either.
Overall: Dedication is a dead feat, the only thing that’s really super worthwhile is Lore Seeker.
Spellmaster (LOCG) (**)
Dedication (**) You do actually qualify for this, and there’s two other feats that you can take so I’m actually rating it this time. Not a great bonus for you, although you certainly can Identify Magic.
Surreptitious Spellcaster (**) The only regular reason I can see to want to Conceal your casting is to avoid provoking reactions. If you do find yourself needing to surreptitiously heal folks, then by all means, go for it.
Ward Casting (X) You can’t take it without having already multiclassed.
Spellmaster’s Resilience (****) This is the reason you’re here to be honest. +1 to saves and resistance 5 against everything from a particular tradition is insanely good.
Absorb Spell (X) As Ward Casting.
Overall: Not a lot that’s great for you, but it has its niches, and Spellmaster’s Resilience is actually fantastic.
Student of Perfection (LOWG) (***)
Dedication (**) Takes a little while to qualify compared to monk or fighter, and if you’re not a monk multiclass your punching is not going to be great to begin with.
Perfect Strike (***) If you want a more offensive use for your reactions. After all, they can’t kill your friends if you’ve knocked them out.
Unblinking Flame Revelation (**) Main benefit here is knocking out someone’s invisibility, blur or mirror image, and that’s situational.
Unbreaking Wave Advance (***) A decent crowd control AoE with some damage behind it.
Unfolding Wind Rush (***) A very nice answer to flying enemies, and the wall of wind is an added bonus.
Untwisting Iron Buffer (*) You get slightly less from this than from lay on hands.
Overall: This is a fun archetype and a good option for punchy paladin without multiclassing monk.
Swordmaster (LOCG) (***)
Dedication (**) Getting Disarmed is rarely going to be an actual issue because Disarm is awful.
Harrying Strike (***) Solid tanking ability, keeps enemies from getting past you to the squishies.
Shoulder Catastrophe (***) This can be better than your champion’s reaction, depending on how big the damage you expect is. Negating critical effects is a massive bonus too.
Death’s Door (***) As we’ve established, you can’t use your other reactions if you’re dead.
Overall: A very solid archetype for tanking, which is one of the things champion excels at.
A dizzying array of amazing feat selection, synergy with most ancestries and being the only martial that is designed to favor Charisma give champion a strong niche and a variety of options to work with, options that will only grow as more causes a released and boy am I not looking forward to having to basically rewrite several parts of this guide when that happens. Next month, we’ll be taking a step back from classes, and from regular content posts in fact to instead look at spells. All the spells. Every spell that exists in a hardcover book at time of publication, posted over four weeks. Oh god please save me from myself. If you want to follow those spell posts this month instead of next, check out my Patreon over in the sidebar and get access a month early. Until next time, good luck, have fun, and try not to die.