Iconic Design: The Amazing Flying Fox

Welcome to Iconic Design, Private Sanctuary’s source for innovative and evocative character builds for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, guest-written by Code/Switch blogger James. Today, we’re going to be looking at a build for JUMPING SUPER HIGH.


Hello, everyone!

Alex is currently in the clutches of a supervillian either with laser eyes or metal teeth, I can’t remember which. In his absence he left me a letter to help him out with Iconic Design until he gets back. Your Everyman Gamer will be back soon, a certain well-dressed Scot with a sports car and Walther pistol is on the case.

My Iconic Design is going to be much shorter than usual, but it’s close to my heart. I hate the fly rules. I hate using the word hate too, but the DC to keep flying after being hit is 10. DC 10 to avoid losing 10 feet after being nuked. It’s prohibitively hard to ground airborne opponents, so why not bring the fight to them and drag them down to your level?

I understand ranged attacks and magical flight exist but I want to solve this problem with a bang, well a collision really. In the flying skill it notes that a flying creature that suffers a collision while flying must make a DC 25 fly check or plummet to the ground. This is only against creatures using winged flight, but that is a difficult check to make. The only issue is how do you get up to them without magical flight? The answer is phreaking the acrobatics skill.

In this build we’re going to multiclass to phreak a ridiculously high acrobatics by 4th level, with further abilities to turn a +33 check into 33 feet straight into the air. All of our choices are going to be related to increasing acrobatics so this character won’t be much of a fighter until about level 7 or 8, but it’s a worthy sacrifice for such awesome hops. Also this build is Pathfinder Society legal!

Build Concept

  • Kitsune: We’re going Kitsune as per Alexs’ letter instructions and to capitalize on the Kitsunes’ +2 racial acrobatics bonus and their +2 Dexterity score bonus.
  • Kineticist: Aerokineticist specifically. The air-based kineticist has some abilities that’ll let us make this build come to life.
  • Vigilante: For this four level build, you could easily substitute Barbarian, but the Vigilante talent we’re going to take improves at higher levels and pays dividends.

The Magic

  • Classes: Kineticist 2/ Vigilante 2
  • Feats: Skill Focus (1st), Kinetic Leap (3rd)
  • Trait: 1st: Rice-Runner, 2nd: FREE
  • Abilities: Utility Wild Talent – Air’s Reach, Shadows Swiftness

You’ll receive other abilities from your classes, but these are the things you’ll care about for this jumping build. We’re going to assume that your Kitsune starts with a +4 Dexterity Modifier and at every level you put a rank into acrobatics. At 4th level you’d end up with a pretty spiffy acrobatics bonus; +3 from Acrobatics as a class skill, +4 ranks in acrobatics, +2 racial bonus from Kitsune, +1 from Rice-Runner trait, +4 from Air’s Leap and +3 from Skill Focus for a healthy +17 acrobatics.

Now we get crazy. The Vigilante Talent Shadows Swiftness adds +10 to your base speed. For every 10 feet over 30 feet of movement you gain a stacking +4 to acrobatics. (Side note this would stack with the Barbarians Fast Movement).

Next the Aerokineticist Air’s Leap ability makes you always count as having a running start when jumping, doubling the result of your acrobatics check to jump AND take burn to QUADRUPLE the resulting distance of your jump. In Pathfinder each vertical foot is DC 4, so for every 4 you make on an acrobatics check you go up one foot.

Lastly we have the feat Kinetic Leap. Once a day as a swift action you can add +10 to your acrobatic check to jump. It’s a limited ability but if you take 1 point of burn, you can use this ability at will.

So after that lets just count where our acrobatics skill is at now. +3 from Acrobatics as a class skill, +4 ranks in acrobatics, +2 racial bonus from Kitsune, +1 from Rice-Runner trait, +4 from Air’s Leap and +3 from Skill Focus, +4 from Shadows Swiftness,  and +10 from Kinetic Leap for a static total of 35 BEFORE ROLLING THE DICE! Add in that whatever result you roll is QUADRUPLED to 140 if you decide to take a little burn for a static jump height of 35 feet (Once again without rolling!) Anime leaps for everyone!

Extra Credits

I love this build. It’s funny because you WILL take fall damage if you don’t have a Ring of Feather Fall. You can also increase your acrobatics by buying Boots of Striding and Springing and taking at least one Barbarian level later on. You are limited by your total move distance, as you can’t out jump your maximum movement for a round (interpreted as a double move).

As for higher levels and actually being a skilled combatant, continuing in kineticist would be very doable as its ability score variance is pretty low and you just need to have a good Dexterity and Constitution score, but really, the skies the limit. Heh.

James Ballod

James blossomed into geekdom like a piranha plant in the crack of a sidewalk. Watered by the muscle-brained lore of Warhammer 40,000 and nurtured in the rough bosom of World of Warcraft, tabletop RPGs came late in life to James. The rich lore and real-world influences in games like Pathfinder inspire James to explore them from every angle. When not being an annoying anime-fanboy he can be found discussing the history of various cuisines and over-analyzing real world influences in works of fiction.

1 Comment

  1. Rosc

    Hahaha, this is amazing. I love any build than makes Pathfinder more Anime. I’ve toyed with similar ideas for making high jumpers that also have rediculous run speeds.

    Also, I’d almost say Vigilante is a better way to go through the rest of your career. Taking a 2 level hit to Kinnie lowers your damage by d6, caster level by 2, DCs by 1, not to mention delaying Infusions on a class who’s “spell levels” are already a level behind the Sorcerer. Barbarian hilarity only makes that problem worse, but Barbar levels would stack quite well with Vigilante, especially the Avenger types.

    Actually, no. Let’s go all-in here. Dips in Barbarian, Bloodrager, Cleric with the Travel domain, and maybe back to Vigilante because of the cool power to use half of your (quite mind boggling) ground speed as climb speed.