Hello Pathfinders! This week I’m pitching in to the Iconic Design blog to talk about one of my favorite builds, the kineticist healer! But not just any healer, this one specializes in also protecting their allies as a front-line combatant. Lets take a look!
We want some great healing capability, both in and out of combat, and we want to be able to be able to take a hit. After all, healers are often primary targets on the battlefield. With this build, I not only make the healer a target, but I make them a tank. I WANT them to be a target, so my allies can feel free to roam around dealing all the damage they want.
Any information important to understanding the build or its roots goes here.
- Race Anything with a +Con (I chose gnome)
- Class kineticist (kinetic chirurgeon) 8
- Ability Scores Dex 14+, Con 20
- Feats Bodyguard, Combat Reflexes, In Harm’s Way, Toughness
- Traits Helpful (there’s a generic version and an improved version for halflings)
- Class Abilities elemental overflow (+2/+4, +2 Con, +2 Dex, 20% fortification), healing burst, kinetic chirurgery, kinetic healer, kinetic restoration, mercy (choose 3), metahealer (+1d6)
The core of this build is a healer, and as a “constitution caster,” our Con score is going to be the most important. For maximum effect, get an 18 in there before the racial bonus. Your second most important score is going to be Dexterity, as you’ll need it for Combat Reflexes and blocking attacks with Bodyguard. Finally, pick up the Helpful trait to boost your bonus on aid another checks. If you decide to forgo the Con bonus, you can choose a halfling and get a slightly better Helpful race trait. I like gnome, personally. Humans, half-elves, and half-orcs are also all perfectly valid choices; each good for different reasons.
In combat, you can keep your party alive with massive heals, healing 4d6+16 with a touch or send a burst of healing to all living things for 4d6+8. This is by using the kinetic healer utility talent, available to aether, water, and wood kineticists (wood uses the wood healer talent). Each time you heal someone with the kinetic healer talent, either you or the target must accept 1 point of burn. This deals 1 point of nonlethal damage per hit die that doesn’t go away until you rest for the evening. Most players get quite concerned about this, but I usually take all the burn myself unless I’m healing an NPC or someone who’s not likely to see combat. For healing multiple targets, you can heal every living thing in 30 feet with healing burst and it only costs 1 point of burn that I have to take myself. No big deal! Using positive blast with this, I can heal the full 4d6+8 and it only costs me a tiny 1 hp per level.
“But I still don’t like dealing damage to heal, it seem counter productive.” I hear you, however you’ve got a few things to mitigate this. One is internal reservoir, which lets us bank points of burn from days we don’t need it and keep them for days we do need it. This means that if you’re fully prepared for an adventure, you’ve got “free” heals from this reservoir. Another mitigation is investing in Use Magic Device and carrying a wand of cure light wounds like every other healer out there; it’s a class skill for kineticists so you’ll be fine there. The final big mitigating factor is your hit points. As a Con based “caster” you’re going to have a massive pool of hit points. If you have a +2 Con belt and choose +1 hp for your favored class bonus, you’re looking at a massive 116 hp on average (123 by PFS rules) at 8th level. Each big burst of healing only “costs” you 8 points of nonlethal damage. Considering you can do this 11 times per day at that level, that’s a LOT of healing. Top folks off with wand charges and UMD, and your party is golden.
Besides healing, your party will want you to help get rid of status ailments, and the kinetic chirurgeon has the answer in giving you paladin mercies that you can add to your kinetic heals and even healing burst! One of the most powerful is the injured mercy, which grants the target fast healing 3 for a number of rounds equal to half your level. If you pick this up at level 9, you’re looking at a bonus of 12 extra hp per big heal. In addition to mercies, you can pick up kinetic restoration at 6th level. This utility talent acts a lot like lesser restoration, but it’s not called out as being the same. This means it will restore fatigue and ability damage, but not special case ailments that can be fixed with lesser restoration.
At level 9 you can also forgo your mercy to instead have the heal act as breath of life and restore a companion who’s died in the last round. Can I tell you how satisfying it is to bring your entire party back to life after a big AoE kills everyone but you? It’s VERY satisfying.
“But what can I do besides heal?” You’ve got your reasonably powerful kinetic blast that automatically gets stronger as you level. Based on your feat selection, you can be reasonably good at hitting your targets. I like to use my feats to make a really defensive character who uses Bodyguard and In Harm’s Way to boost their allies AC and take the hit for them if that isn’t enough. This directs the damage at me. You’ll find that the Helpful trait and benevolent armor will make this boost even stronger. The following build is granting +5 to AC when using these feats! That’s a 25% less chance that a swing will connect on one of my allies.
Last thing to talk about is power selection. Your choice of elements is aether, water, and wood. They’re all pretty good, but each have benefits and drawbacks. Aether has great single target healing as it’s healing is based on a physical blast, it also has a powerful defense talent in force ward that grants you a pool of regenerating temp hit points. Water also has a great single target healing based on a physical blast, but it’s defense talent isn’t as strong. I feel like getting the slick utility talent can make up for this, as you have unlimited grease spells with a high DC based off of your Con modifier. Wood is based on positive blast, which isn’t as initially powerful as it’s an energy blast that doesn’t heal as much. It’s strange, but that’s the way it goes. The good news is the defense talent is not bad, granting a bonus to your natural AC, and you already have positive blast to give as much power as possible to your healing burst if/when you get it at 8th level.
Finally, utility talents can grant a lot of flavor to your character, so look through those and see if any speak to you. Have fun with this extremely defensive healing build that will ensure the rest of your party survives to the BBEG!
Female gnome telekineticist (kinetic chirurgeon) 8 (Pathfinder RPG Occult Adventures 10, 90)
NG Small humanoid (gnome)
Init +3; Senses low-light vision; Perception +11
AC 24, touch 15, flat-footed 21 (+6 armor, +1 deflection, +3 Dex, +1 natural, +2 shield, +1 size)
hp 116 (8d8+80)
Fort +14, Ref +9, Will +2
Defensive Abilities fortification 20%
Speed 30 ft.
Melee cestus +6 (1d2-1)
Ranged telekinetic blast +12 (4d6+16) or
positive blast +12 touch (4d6+8 positive energy)
Special Attacks kinetic blast
Kineticist Wild Talents Known
Blasts—aetheric boost (positive blast), positive blast (4d6+8 positive energy), telekinetic blast (4d6+16)
Utility—basic phytokinesis, basic telekinesis, healing burst, kinetic healer, kinetic restoration, <any 2 telekinesis talents>
Str 8, Dex 16, Con 26, Int 7, Wis 10, Cha 14
Base Atk +6; CMB +4; CMD 18
Feats Bodyguard(APG), Combat Reflexes, In Harm’s Way(APG), Toughness
Traits helpful, <anything>
Skills Perception +11, Stealth +7 (+9 in snowy environments), Use Magic Device +13
SQ basic phytokinesis, burn (2 points/round, max 11), elemental overflow +2, expanded element (wood), gather power, internal buffer 2, kinetic chirurgery, metahealer
Combat Gear wand of cure light wounds; Other Gear +2 benevolent mithral erutaki coat, amulet of natural armor +1, belt of mighty constitution +2, ring of deflection +1, ring of force shield