Technical blog and writings by Micah Webner.

Pathfinder Character Builds: Paladin Dans

This character was created for an upcoming campaign. Our GM created enough 10th level characters for our party, then we all rolled initiative to draw these characters at random. I've never played or built a Champion or Paladin before, so unpacking this character's build to figure out how to play him was quite an experience. I think our GM did tell us to not get too involved with back stories so that details and side quests could be revealed over time, but this build definitely implies a lot about the character's personality and status as an adventurer.

Paladin Dans is good at what he does. He's a strong-blooded dwarf, brimming with unburdened strength, finding refuge among rock and stone, braced against mental attacks by his firm convictions, protected in battle by deep faith. It's unclear why a dwarf most comfortable in the dark depths would find a cause in The Dawnflower, but the goddess of fire and sunlight chose to empower Paladin Dans to become a generous and nurturing soul and a gifted and talented healer. He's an expert in armor and weapons, a powerful juggernaut with lightning reflexes, always ready to strike with retribution when his friends are attacked in battle.

I selected gear with the assumption that a 10th level character would start with 2300gp and our GM told us to only select mundane items. I chose the Chain Shirt as alternative armor if situations ever call for it, or maybe it's his old armor, and he's holding onto if for nostalgia or something.

I recently binge watched Seal Team, and when I read that the Healer's Kit should be worn in order to Apply First Aid in combat, I couldn't help but think about Sonny's efforts to rig a backup med kit in Season 6. That should definitely flavor the way I play this character in those situations.

Ancestry: Dwarf

  • Ability Boost: CON, WIS, STR
  • Ability Flaws: CHA
  • 10 HP
  • Size: Medium
  • Speed: 20 (25 with Fleet at level 3)
  • Languages: Common, Dwarven
  • Special: Darkvision, Clan Dagger
  • Heritage: Strong-Blooded
    • Poison Resistance half level, double reduction on saving throws.
    • Heritage Feat: n/a
  • Ancestry Feat: Unburdened Iron
    • Negate speed reduction from heavy armor.
    • Deduct 5 from speed reduction when encumbered.

Background: Barkeep

  • Ability Boost: DEX, CHA
  • Skill: Trained in Diplomacy
  • Skill Feat: Hobnobber
  • Lore: Alcohol

Free Ability Boosts

  • STR
  • DEX
  • CON
  • CHA

Class: Champion (Paladin)

  • Key Ability: STR
  • 10 HP + 2 CON
  • Perception: T
  • Saving throws: Fort - E, Ref - T, Will - E
  • Trained Skills:
    • Trained in Religion
    • Trained in Medicine (Sarenrae)
    • Trained in Medicine, Athletics, Society
  • Weapons:
    • Trained in simple weapons
    • Trained in martial weapons
    • Trained in unarmed attacks
  • Armor:
    • Trained in all armor
    • Trained in unarmored defense
  • Class features
    • Trained in divine spell attacks
    • Trained in divine spell DCs
    • Champion's Code
    • Deity and Cause: Paladin of Sarenrae
    • Deific Weapon: Scimitar
    • Champion's Reaction: Retributive Strike
    • Devotion Spell: Lay on Hands (1)
    • Shield Block (Reaction)
  • Class feat: Deity's Domain


  • Adventurer's Pack (backpack, a bedroll, 10 pieces of chalk, flint and steel, 50 feet of rope, 2 weeks’ rations, soap, 5 torches, and a waterskin.)
  • Explorer's Clothing
  • Healer's Toolkit
  • Crowbar
  • Grappling hook
  • Writing Set
  • Signal whistle
  • Chain Shirt - AC 2, Dex Cap +3, ACP -1 (Flexible, Noisy)
  • Half Plate - AC 5, Dex Cap +1, ACP -3, Speed -10
  • Steel shield - AC 2
  • Clan dagger - 1d4 P/B
  • Scimitar - 1d6 S
  • Longbow - 1d8 P
  • Arrows
  • Wagon
  • Horse (2)
  • Healing Potion (Lesser, 2d8+5) (5)
  • Healing Potion (Moderate, 3d8+10) (4)
  • Cash: 194pp, 29gp, 20sp, 8cp

Level 2

  • 10 hp + 2 CON
  • Class Feat: Resilient Mind
  • Skill Feat: No Cause for Alarm

Level 3

  • 10 hp + 2 CON
  • Class feature: Divine Ally (Blade)
  • General Feat: Fleet
  • Skill Increase: Diplomacy (E)

Level 4

  • 10 hp + 2 CON
  • Class Feat: Divine Health
    • +1 save against diseases
    • success = critical success
  • Skill Feat: Titan Wrestler
    • Disarm, Grapple, Shove, or Trip up to 2 sizes larger.

Level 5

Ability boosts provide retroactive increases to hit points and known skills as defined here.

  • 10 hp + 2 CON + 5
  • Ability boosts: STR, DEX, CON, CHA
  • Ancestry feat: Sheltering Slab
  • Class feature: Weapon Expertise
    • Expert in all trained weapons
  • Skill increase: Religion (E)

Level 6

  • 10 hp + 3 CON
  • Class Feat: Mercy
  • Skill Feat: Battle Medicine

Level 7

  • 10 hp + 3 CON + 7
  • Class feature: Armor Expertise
    • Expert in all armor and gain specialization effects.
  • Weapon Specialization
    • +2 damage with expert weapons
  • General feat: Toughness
  • Skill increase: Medicine (E)

Level 8

  • 10 hp + 4 CON
  • Class Feat: Advanced Deity's Domain
    • Rebuke Death (Devotion Spell)
    • Increase Focus Pool by 1
  • Skill Feat: Glad-Hand

Level 9

  • 10 hp + 4 CON
  • Ancestry Feat: Stone Bones
  • Class feature: Champion Expertise
    • Class DC and divine spell attack/DC to expert.
  • Class feature: Divine Smite
  • Class feature: Juggernaut
    • Fort saves increase to master.
    • Fort success = critical success.
  • Class feature: Lightning Reflexes (E)
  • Skill increase: Religion (M)

Level 10

  • 10 hp + 4 CON + 10
  • Ability boosts: DEX, CON, WIS, CHA
  • Class Feat: Resilient Touch
  • Skill Feat: Sacred Defense

Beliefs, Instincts, Tenets, and Deity influences


  1. I can do the most good if I band together with a party of like-minded individuals.
  2. TBD
  3. TBD


  1. There's always time pray for those who are sick.
  2. Generosity, nurturing, truthfulness, and selfless courage.
  3. Redemption is waiting for those who will seek it. Oppose evil with words first, then–if necessary–with scimitar and flame.


  • You must act with honor, never taking advantage of others, lying, or cheating.
  • You must respect the lawful authority of legitimate leadership wherever you go, and follow its laws.

Sarenrae (The Dawnflower) (NG)

  • Edicts: destroy the Spawn of Rovagug, protect allies, provide aid to the sick and wounded, seek and allow redemption.
  • Anathema: create undead, lie, deny a repentant creature an opportunity for redemption, fail to strike down evil.
  • Areas of Concern: healing, honesty, redemption, and the sun.

Diplomacy first

  • Hobnobber to gain info quickly
  • Glad-hand to quickly Make an Impression
  • No Cause for Alarm to dispel fear in battle

A rock solid defense

  • Firm convictions of a Resilent Mind protect against mental attacks.
  • Get next to a stone wall to take advantage of Sheltering Slab.
  • Call on Sacred Defense for temporary hit points.
  • Throw off critical damage and effects with the Stone Bones reaction. (DC17)

All the heals

  • Retributive Strike reaction for ally's damage reduction (DR 14), and strike foe if in reach.
    • Add +2 persistent good damage on successful attack.
  • Medicine checks first to save Focus Pool
    • Use Battle Medicine to Treat Wounds. (1 action, 1/day limit per recipient)
    • Administer First Aid to Stabilize or Stop Bleeding. (2 actions)
    • Treat Poison during combat. (1 action)
    • Treat Wounds in Exploration Mode. (10 minutes, 1/hour per recipient)
    • Treat Disease in Downtine Mode. (8 hours)
  • A pocketful of potions.
  • Mercy first to stop fear or paralyzation before heals. (1 action)
  • Lay on Hands for 36hp and +2 AC to ally or 6d6 vs undead.
  • Add Healer's Blessing within 30' for 12hp additional healing.
  • When all else fails, Rebuke Death for 1-3 allies within 20' to gain 3d6 HP.