[RPG] How should I buff a solo PC to survive a Pathfinder Adventure Path


I'm planning to take a solo PC through the Mummy's Mask Adventure Path. The AP is designed for four characters, however, so I reckon she's going to need some help.

The player is interested in playing a druid with an animal companion. Her interest is primarily in puzzle solving and "tomb raiding," rather than combat.

How should I bend the rules to provide my player a tense, but not impossible, experience through all six adventures?

Best Answer

Your player is going to come across three major issues:

  1. They won't have the same amount of resources as a full party (fewer total spell slots, etc).

  2. They won't have the same kinds of resources as a full party (fewer skill points to spend or fewer kinds of spells (only druid, or only wizard, etc)). They'll have trouble since they might have all the druid spells they need, but they won't have all the skills to find and disable that trap, jump the chasm, identify a magic sigil, etc. etc.

  3. They won't have the same number of actions as the enemies they're fighting- four people would get four full rounds of actions and match a party of four they're fighting- two people get half the actions (along with half the hp and such), but are still fighting four full rounds of actions. It's easy for them to get overwhelmed by groups.

I know of three ways from experience as a DM that go a long way in helping the player's resource economy.

  1. Let the player use the Gestalt system:

    • They get to choose two classes every level and get the best of both (Highest BAB/Hit die, Highest of each save), as well as any class features from either.

    • This gives the player a bunch of options in any case- a Druid on their own has mediocre direct combat ability, but a Druid with the BAB/HD of a ranger can be a force to be reckoned with.

  2. Let the animal companion take class levels:

    • Since the player wants to play a druid with an animal companion, you could always say the companion is intelligent and allow the player to give it class levels in place of Animal hit dice (instead of d8 hit die animal hit dice, it takes levels in fighter or something)

    • Gives the player flexibility and more resources, as they can build two characters to work together and overcome challenges.

  3. Let the player run multiple characters.

    • This one also helps the player's action economy, as they're running two full-blown characters instead of just one (and a half in the companion). They'll still have fewer actions than the opposing forces most likely, but their actions will be a bit more effective- A fighter 6 lion is much more effective than a plain AC lion with 6 levels of Animal- notably, the fighter one has 2 more BAB and 6 more hp, as well as 4 extra feats and armor proficiency, and is able to take some great fighter archetypes, etc.

    • There are a ton of ways to balance this one out- have a main character and side characters. You can dole out levels to keep the party as a whole balanced, but it should be okay if the "main" is 2 or so levels higher than the others. (Thanks @LegendaryDude for the additional inspiration)

Related Topic