Welcome back to the continuation of the Secrets of Magic special review blog! If you missed the beginning, you can find it here! Yesterday, I read through all of the eidolons. Today, we dig into summoner class feats!
I decided to go ahead and tag the feats that are evolution feats and tandem feats to give you an idea of how many of each there are. Evolution feats (34) are feats that apply to your eidolon (your eidolon actually takes the feat, not you). Tandem feats (2) are feats that effect the action economy in some way by letting you both do something together. (There are 60 total feats.)
Advanced Weaponry (Evolution) – Alter one of your eidolon’s attacks by adding a trait. This feat doesn’t say you can use it more than once, so choose wisely.
Dual Studies – You and your eidolon each get a skill (different skills) that you don’t share, and you become experts at 7th. This is interesting, but I can’t see myself using it over other feat options. (I should remind myself to revisit this breakdown in a year for follow up thoughts.)
Energy Heart (Evolution) – Oooh, nice. One eidolon attack gains an energy and the eidolon gains resistance to that energy type.
Expanded Senses (Evolution) – You eidolon gains low-light vision, darkvision, and a scent imprecise. Some eidolons start with darkvision, but I do like that they packaged them all in a feat and are making it generic so that all summoners can choose it.
Extend Boost – Learn the extend boost link spell. A free action that asks you to make a skill check (typically tradition based) to extend the length of boost eidolon or reinforce eidolon. The nice thing here is that a failure won’t use up the focus point from this spell!
Glider Form (Evolution) – You eidolon can spend an action to glide instead of fall. I like that they call out the different ways you can alter the form to enable gliding besides just wings.
Meld into Eidolon – This is why we play this game! Oh, Synthesis, how I have missed you! You manifest your eidolon and become your eidolon, only able to use its stats and abilities (except to unmanifest it). This implementation is much simpler than previous versions, but it remains to be seen if that simplicity still retains enough flavor to be preferred over the old, more complicated versions.
Unfettered Eidolon – You learn the unfetter eidolon link spell. This 2 action focus spell allows your eidolon to be as far from you as you want … for a minute. After that, if too far away, it goes poof!
Alacritous Action (Evolution) – add +10 ft to your eidolon’s Speed
Amphibious Form (Evolution) – As other amphibious creatures, it can breathe air and water and land and swim speeds.
Magical Understudy (Evolution) – Your eidolon gets two cantrips and can cast
Ranged Combatant (Evolution) – It gains a 30 ft propulsive ranged attack with a trait type you can choose
Reinforce Eidolon – You learn the reinforce eidolon link spell. The defensive version of Boost Eidolon and, of course, there can be only one (can’t use ‘em both at the same time).
Steed Form (Evolution) – You steed becomes much more adept at being a mount. While this might seem a waste at first glance, the eidolon is an “intelligent” creature, and sharing spaces or riding on an intelligent creature requires you to both lose an action (I think they covered this in CRB, but I am 99% sure they revisited this with the Sprite ancestry). This enables you (only you) to not lose that action while mounted on your eidolon (and only your eidolon), and provide its move actions with the tandem trait to ensure the mechanics line up.
Bloodletting Claws (Evolution) – slashing/piercing crits can now do persistent bleed as a specialization effect.
Defend Summoner (Evolution) – This 1 action lets your eidolon grant you an AC bonus.
Dual Energy Heart (Evolution) – Upgrade to include a second resistance, and attack gains versatile between the energy types.
Lifelink Surge – Learn lifelink surge link spell. This single action spell gives your eidolon fast healing 4 for 4 rounds (+2 for each level).
Reactive Dismissal – This reaction lets you dismiss your eidolon to reduce damage it takes. I think this has fun flavor potential.
Shrink Down (Evolution) – With an action, your eidolon can become one size smaller.
Skilled Partner – Your eidolon gains skill feats! This is pretty neat, I am curious to see what different things this will enable, such as both summoner and eidolon having feats that enable free exploration tactics (such as always scouting or always stealthing).
Tandem Movement (Tandem) – This single action lets both of you Stride. This looks like it will help with concerns about the action economy of summoner and eidolon while trying to move through/across a battlefield.
Vibration Sense (Evolution) – eidolon gains imprecise tremorsense 30 ft (wavesense if aquatic, both if amphibious)
Blood Frenzy (Evolution) – If its last action caused bleed, this single action provides the eidolon with boost eidolon and temp HP at the cost of fatigue afterwards.
Eidolon’s Opportunity (Evolution) – Attack of Opportunity … for an eidolon
Eidolon’s Wrath (Evolution) – Your eidolon (not you) gains eidolon’s wrath focus spell, choosing the damage type now. (It is called focus spell instead of link; which i assume is due to the eidolon getting it.) This 2 action 3rd level focus spell 20 ft area does 5d6 damage, +2d6 per spell level.
Master Summoner – Prepare two summoning spells in place of a single spell slot. Nice to see a nod to the 1e summoner.
Ostentatious Arrival – This is fun. This free action metamagic lets a summoned or manifested creature damage creatures when it arrives. 1d4 scaled as usual of a type the creature can use (or fire).
Phase Out (Evolution) – This is interesting and sounds like it was written for the phantoms. 3 actions to become almost incorporeal (resistance to damage, can’t attack)
Tandem Strike (Tandem) – More action economy manipulation through teamwork. 2 actions, you both attack the same target, count MAP afterwards.
Boost Summons – Another nod to the summoner of old. Boost eidolon also effects your current summons.
Constricting Hold (Evolution) – provides a single action constrict
Energy Resistance (Evolution) – bumps the resistance from the Energy Heart feats
Hulking Size (Evolution) – Increase to Large and 10 ft reach
Magical Adept (Evolution) – Add a 1st and 2nd level spell to your eidolon.
Miniaturize (Evolution) – Shrink down now allows Tiny
Burrowing Form (Evolution) – gains a burrow speed
Merciless Rend (Evolution) – 1 action auto damage after two slashing attacks
Protective Bond – This reaction lets you take the lesser of two damages instead of the greater.
Push Attack (Evolution) – An attack with Shove can Push.
Transpose – 1 action to switch places. I seem to recall this from 1e.
Weighty Impact (Evolution) – An attack with Trip can Knockdown.
Flexible Transmogrification – Add a 6th level evolution feat, changeable daily.
Grasping Limbs (Evolution) – An attack with Grapple can Grab.
Link Focus – Ahh, the classics. Recover 2 Focus Points instead of 1
Summoner’s Call – if either of you take damage, you can use this Reaction to bring the eidolon to your side.
Towering Size (Evolution) – Increase to Huge with 15 ft reach.
Airborne Form (Evolution) – Upgrades a glider to a fly speed.
Resilient Shell (Evolution) – Regardless of how you describe it, gain resistance to physical damage using Con mod.
Share Eidolon Magic – You can cast your eidolons spells (using their spell slots).
Spell-Repelling Form (Evolution) – Gain a +1 status to saves vs magic.
Effortless Concentration – Oh, this is fun. A free action at the start of your turn to Sustain a Spell. I think I’ve seen this concept (or something similar) elsewhere, but I can’t recall where.
Ever-Vigilant Senses (Evolution) – I really like this package of abilities. Bonus to Perception, no flanks, see invisible stuff, free check to disbelieve an illusion.
Trample (Evolution) – This 3 action activity offers Stride twice and damage to smaller creatures via Trample.
Link Wellspring – Back to classics … Refocus for 3 points.
Magical Master (Evolution) – Your eidolon can now cast all spell levels 1 to 7
True Transmogrification – You can swap any of your evolution feats every day. Ok, this sounds fun for angels and demons … or maybe occult tentacled things.
Eternal Boost – permanent quickened, only for boost eidolon or reinforce eidolon, and you can choose one to always do during exploration in addition to your usual.
Legendary Summoner – You can prepare two 10th level summons using a 9th level slot. Hmm. This seems pretty powerful. I like it.
Twin Eidolon – Another returning 1e ability. You manifest your eidolon and you also take its form, so that there are two of your eidolon. It seems to have the same restrictions as Meld Into Eidolon, but you get your own mental ability mods this time.
Well, there you have it … and what I learned when I read these feats? Quite a bit of options, actually! The sidebars in this section include an Angelic Vessel sample build (Angel), a paragraph on riding sapient creatures, a God Caller sample build (Beast), and a bit on what qualifies as a “summon spell” … basically anything that brings you a creature with the summoned trait.
After 3 days of reading about summoners and eidolons, I can’t decide which my first build should be … but let’s take a look at a “classic” … kobold summoner with dragon mount. I would probably choose the follow feat path for it: Glider Form (1st), Steed Form (2nd), Energy Heart (1st), Ostentatious Arrival (6th), Energy Resistance (8th), Merciless Rend (10th), Summoner’s Call (12th), Airborne Form (14th), Ever-Vigilant Senses (16th), Trample (16th), Twin Eidolon (20th).
That wraps up the Summoner. Thanks for reading along … tune in tomorrow as I touch on the multiclass archetypes and then start looking at the absurd amount of spells available in this book. As always, please join us at our Discord server https://discord.gg/Rt79BAj to let me know what you think or simply have a chat!