Rules Index | GM Screen | Player's Guide

Chapter 4: Variant Rules / Feats and Features

Dual-Class PCs

Source Gamemastery Guide pg. 192
Sometimes, especially when you have a particularly small play group or want to play incredibly versatile characters, you might want to allow dual-class characters that have the full benefits of two different classes.

Building a Dual-Class Character

Source Gamemastery Guide pg. 192
When building a dual-class character, the primary changes to the character creation process are fairly straightforward. Choose and implement your character’s ancestry and background as normal. Then, when you get to the step of choosing a class, select two classes and add everything from each class except Hit Points and starting skills: initial proficiencies, class features, class feats, extra skill feats and skill increases for rogues, and so on. As always, use the highest proficiency granted for a given statistic. For instance, if one class gave you expert proficiency in Will saves and the other gave you master proficiency in Will saves, you would be a master in Will saves.

Use only the higher Hit Points per level from the two classes. For starting skills, apply the skills automatically granted by each class, and then apply the larger number of additional skills. For instance, a cleric of Shelyn/ranger would gain Hit Points equal to 10 + their Constitution modifier per level, start with the trained proficiency rank in Nature and Survival from ranger and Religion and either Crafting or Performance from cleric, and then gain a number of additional skills of their choice equal to 4 + their Intelligence modifier, since the ranger provides the trained proficiency rank in more additional skills than the cleric does (this example doesn’t include any skills they gained from their background or other sources). This character would also have the deity, divine spellcasting, divine font, and doctrine class features from cleric plus the Hunt Prey, hunter’s edge, and ranger feat class features from ranger.


Source Gamemastery Guide pg. 192
Dual-class spellcasters get full access to all the spells of any spellcasting classes they have. For instance, a sorcerer/wizard gets five cantrips in their spell repertoire from sorcerer, five prepared cantrips from wizard, three spontaneous 1st-level spell slots from the sorcerer (with three 1st-level spells in their repertoire), and three 1st-level prepared spell slots from wizard (or four, for a specialist). They keep these spells entirely separate and get the full benefits of both spellcasting class features, even if both classes use the same tradition.

Classes with focus pools get all the Focus Points granted by all of them. These share one focus pool as normal, with the standard cap of 3 maximum Focus Points.

Character Advancement

Source Gamemastery Guide pg. 193
A dual-class character gains the class feats and class features for both classes at each level as they advance, with the exception of ability boosts, general feats, skill feats, and skill increases—the character gets each of these benefits only once per level, since both classes would provide the same benefit. (A dual-class rogue/ranger still gets the extra skill feat and skill increase at levels where the other class doesn’t provide them.)

If a character gains the same proficiency rank in a statistic more than once, they still use only the highest rank. In the example above, when the cleric gets Alertness at 5th level, they wouldn’t change their Perception rank, since it was already expert due to the ranger’s initial proficiencies.

Playing with Dual-Class Characters

Source Gamemastery Guide pg. 193
Playing a dual-class character certainly gives a character more options, and adding additional spellcasting classes can result in a significantly wider variety of powerful spell effects available to each character. Nonetheless, this sort of dual-classing is more likely to increase the party’s longevity than it is to drastically adjust the level of opponents a dual-class character should be fighting. The increases to saving throw proficiencies and Hit Points make characters somewhat sturdier and able to take on slightly higher challenges, but not every fight should be harder, nor should encounters exceed extreme-threat difficulty.

Dual-classing in two similar martial classes to double up on their advantages can result in characters who, instead of increasing their flexibility, become drastically more powerful in one focus. For instance, a fighter/ranger with the flurry hunter’s edge gains access to incredibly accurate press actions, and a barbarian/fighter has the barbarian’s high damage plus the fighter’s high accuracy. One way around this is to simply disallow combinations that double down on a narrow ability, and instead encourage dual-class characters that open up narrative options and increase the character’s flexibility. The other solution is to raise the challenge from the opposition, treating the party as if the characters were a level higher. However, this is a choice that affects the whole group, even if only one character is built to mow down foes.

Due to the increased number of class feats a dual-class character has, you should limit how much of a benefit a character gets from feats that scale based on the number of feats you have, such as Resiliency feats from multiclass archetypes. Typically, the limit should be half the number of total class feats the character has.