Class Paragon: An Archetype for Pathfinder 2nd edition

One common and popular Pathfinder 2e optional rule is the “free archetype,” which gives characters a free feat they can use for archetypes at 2nd level (and every even level thereafter), which they can only use for archetype feats. This makes it easy and appealing to pick up an archetype that can expand your options and bring depth to your character build.

It also makes it mandatory.

If someone just wanted to be a rogue, in a Free Archetype campaign, their choices are to violate that desire, or to ignore 10 free feats over 20 levels and be notably less powerful than their allies. Now, it’s simplicity itself to allow a character to take additional class feats the qualify for in place of archetype feats… but that isn’t really equivalent. The breadth and access to totally new and unrelated powers granted by archetypes are more than just extra feat slots. It has a broadening effect on an entire character build, and if a player wants to match that while remaining with a single class, it takes slightly more complex rules.

For that purpose, I offer up the Class Paragon. This is an archetype is designed ONLY for use in campaigns with the free archetype optional rules, to allow characters that opt to still remain within the realm of a single class to gain the same kind of benefit, in time picking up abilities from within the class that normally wouldn’t be available to them.

(Art by warmtail)

Class Paragon

Rather than spending time to learn abilities outside your core competency, you have devoted yourself to mastering a single path. In time, you will have a depth of tricks few in your chosen line of action can master.

Class Paragon Dedication Feat 2

Archetype Dedication
Prerequisites: Levels in only one class, no multiclass archetype feats
You gain a 1st-level or 2nd-level class feat, and become trained in one skill of your choice.

Basic Paragon Training Feat 4

You gain a 1st-level or 2nd-level class feat.

Advanced Paragon Training Feat 6

You gain a class feat with a level no greater than half your class level.
Special: You can select this feat up to five times.

Skill Mastery Feat 8

Increase your proficiency rank in one of your skills from expert to master and in another of your skills from trained to expert. You gain a skill feat associated with one of the skills you chose.
Special: You can select this feat up to five times.

Class Paragon Mastery Feat 10

You gain an additional class feature of your class, or an advantage with abilities gained through your class and class feats, as detailed below. You gain the benefits of any selected additional feature that would be granted to a character of half your class level, and gains additional benefits as appropriate as your effective class level for these features increases. Any time a benefit you grant you a skill proficiency level you already have, you may become proficient in one additional skill.
Alchemist: Select an additional research field.
Barbarian: Select an additional instinct.
Bard: Select an additional muse. You also add another focus point to your focus pool, which can expand your focus pool to 4 points if you would have 3 without this feat.
Champion: Select an additional cause. Your alignment need not match this cause exactly, but you must have at least 1 element in common.
Cleric: Select an additional doctrine.
Druid: Select an additional druidic order. You also add another focus point to your focus pool, which can expand your focus pool to 4 points if you would have 3 without this feat.
Fighter: Select an additional weapon group for weapon mastery. At 13th level, you also select an additional weapon group for weapon legend. At 20th level, you gain a +1 bonus to all attacks with weapons you have legendary proficiency with.
Gunslinger: Select an additional way.
Inventor: Select an additional innovation.
Investigator: Select an additional methodology.
Magus: Select an additional hybrid study.
Monk: You gain one bonus stance feat for which you meet the prerequisites. Select one stance which may be on you just gained with this feat). You can enter this stance when you roll for initiative by expending 1 focus point. You can also enter into a new stance while already in another stance without ending the previous stance, as long as one of the two stances is your selected stance, by expending 1 focus point. Each subsequent round you must either end one of the stances, or expend another focus point. You also add another focus point to your focus pool, which can expand your focus pool to 4 points if you would have 3 without this feat.
Oracle: Select an additional mystery. You can choose to also gain its associated curse, or not. You can change this decision each time you gain an oracle level.
Psychic: Select an additional conscious mind.
Ranger: Select an additional hunter’s edge.
Rogue: Select an additional racket.
Sorcerer: Select an additional bloodline.
Summoner: The manifest eidolon action takes you only 2 actions. Additionally, you gain a second eidolon (built as if you were a summoner of half your actual summoner level). You can only have one eidolon summoned at a time, but may summon either eidolon whenever you use the manifest eidolon action. If you already had an eidolon manifested when you do this, it immediately disappears as if you had dismissed it.
Swashbuckler: You select an additional style.
Thaumaturge: You select an additional implement, which functions as a first implement for a thaumaturge of half your class level.
Witch: You gain the hex cantrip and granted spell of an additional patron theme of your choice. You also add another focus point to your focus pool, which can expand your focus pool to 4 points if you would have 3 without this feat. At 15th level, you gain an additional witch focus spell of your choice.
Wizard: Select an additional arcane thesis. At 15th level, select another additional arcane thesis.


So, I need to shill for my Patreon. The time I take to write these posts is paid for my people paying me as little as $3 a month. I very much prefer making the vast majority of these posts publicly available, but right now my Patreon is not bringing in as much as I need to cover the time my blog takes up.

So, beginning this week and until my Patreon hits a higher benchmark, my Tuesday and Thursday posts are going to be Patreon-exclusive. At $1k/month, I’ll go back to having Thursday posts be public, and at $1500/month, I’ll go back to all my posts being public. I hate having to close some of my content, and I know a lot of people are in tight circumstances (and I get it), but the reality is I need to either cut back on the time taken on these blogs, or have my Patreon grow. Rather than cut back immediately, I’m trying to encourage more people to join my Patreon, in the hopes that can benefit everyone.


About Owen K.C. Stephens

Owen K.C. Stephens Owen Kirker Clifford Stephens is a full-time ttRPG Writer, designer, developer, publisher, and consultant. He's the publisher for Rogue Genius Games, and has served as the Starfinder Design Lead for Paizo Publishing, the Freeport and Pathfinder RPG developer for Green Ronin, a developer for Rite Publishing, and the Editor-in-Chief for Evil Genius Games. Owen has written game material for numerous other companies, including Wizards of the Coast, Kobold Press, White Wolf, Steve Jackson Games and Upper Deck. He also consults, freelances, and in the off season, sleeps. He has a Pateon which supports his online work. You can find it at

Posted on December 19, 2022, in Game Design, Pathfinder 2nd Ed and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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