Magic in the Blood: A Guide to Eldritch Heritage and Sorcerer Bloodlines

by Cartmanbeck

The Sorcerer is a concept that has been around for a very long time. A mage that, instead of studying magical lore and theory to gain understanding of its power, is just inherenly born with that power, and may work her entire life to contain and manage it.

In the Pathfinder RPG, a Sorcerer can fulfill many different roles in a party. She can make a very good blaster, using her raw arcane power to destroy enemies directly. She can also make a very good battlefield controller, creating pits or traps in mid-battle to trip up her opponents or direct their movement into the path of a more direct melee ally. A sorcerer can also fulfill the “rogue” party role, using spells to increase her natural Charisma, sweet-talking her way out of difficult situations, or using Stealth to sneak into an enemy’s base and steal an important magic item.

Just like a Wizard, a Sorcerer’s spells give her a good range of flexibility, allowing the Sorcerer to become what you need her to be at a moment’s notice, though she will never be quite as flexible as her Wizard counterpart can be, since she has a limited number of spells known. However, what really makes a Sorcerer shine is the power that she is given thanks to her magical bloodline, which can make a mediocre character into a party star if played right.

This guide is a supplement to the following three guides currently posted on the Paizo forums which deal with Sorcerers:

The authors of these guides have spent a LOT of time putting their work together, and I wish to step on exaclty zero toes with my guide. However, I feel that one aspect of the Sorcerer has been slightly glossed over, and that is the Bloodline class feature. I will be focusing on all of the different sorcerer bloodlines, and giving suggestions on how they can be used effectively by a Sorcerer OR by another character who gains access to that bloodline through the Eldritch Heritage feat line or the Variant Multiclassing rules found in Pathfinder Unchained.

I want to take a second to address two Sorcerer archetypes that are very much bloodline-related and can have a serious effect on how your character works in regards to your bloodline. First, Crossblooded. This archetype lets a Sorcerer choose two bloodlines, and essentially get the best of both worlds... you get both class skills, both arcanas and you can choose feats, spells, and powers from both lists. This is a really big boost, but it comes at a very debilitating cost... you lose one spell known of each spell level, and you take a -2 penalty to Will saves. Losing a spell known of every level means that you’re going to start off at 1st level knowing ONE SPELL. That’s it. There are very few good reasons to trade away so many spells known. Now, you can help mitigate this in a few different ways. You can choose a race that has a favored class bonus allowing you to gain more spells known, such as human. Thanks to the release of Ultimate Equipment, there are also two items available now that can give a sorcerer more spells known, the Page of Spell Knowledge, and the Ring of Spell Knowledge. So, if you really want to do Crossblooded because you love those bloodline arcana, you can make it work.

The second archetype we need to talk about is Wildblooded. This archetype essentially takes your chosen bloodline and mutates it, replacing some of the bonus spells and some of the bloodline powers, just like a subdomain does to a cleric domain. The issue here, is, Paizo decided to write this up as an archetype, as opposed to saying “these are the Wildblooded bloodlines”. This means that, as it’s currently written, Wildblooded bloodlines are NOT eligible for the Eldritch Heritage feat. This has been hotly contested on the Paizo forums, but I feel that it’s pretty clear that you can’t use Eldritch Heritage to gain Wildblooded powers.

That being said, some of the Wildblooded bloodlines are incredibly good, and so I’ll be mentioning the Wildblooded version of a bloodline as a sidenote wherever one exists.

A note about RAI vs. RAW: I will be doing my absolute best to be as fair and unbiased as I can while writing this. However, I recognize that my opinions don’t always turn out to be correct, so any time there is a question about how the rules would be interpreted, I will provide both my interpretation and the way in which the rule can be interpreted by others. If the rule has been debated on the Paizo forums, I will try to find a link to that thread. If it has been answered by a developer or in a FAQ, I will also try to provide a link. In addition, if you find any rulings or FAQs that I’ve missed and which contradict what I’ve written, please let me know ASAP so that I can make corrections. Thanks in advance!

NOTE ADDED 6/3/2017:

I was just made aware of a small group of abilities that were published in the Magic Tactics Toolbox called Bloodline Mutations that COMPLETELY alter the world of bloodline powers. Essentially, they are three alternate bloodline powers that are hands-down some of the best bloodline powers ever created. But even if they weren't... even if they were mediocre... these new options will let you replace very weak options with good options for ANY bloodline! And if you like your bloodline powers a lot, but you want any one of these, you can replace a Bloodline Feat with one of them instead!!! I'll briefly describe each of them here:

Blood Havoc - Add 1 point of damage per damage die to all of your damaging bloodline spells OR spells of a school that you've selected with Spell Focus. This replaces a sorcerer's 1st-level bloodline power.

Blood Intensity - Essentially functions as (and doesn't stack with) the Intensified Spell feat, but doesn't have a maximum of five additional damage dice like it does. You only get to use this power a few times per day, and it replaces the sorcerer's 3rd-level bloodline power.

Blood Piercing - Reduce your target's energy resistance and spell resistance(!!!!) by your Charisma mofidier. You only get to use this power a few times per day, and it replaces the sorcerer's 9th-level bloodline power.

Now, obviously these options open up a whole host of new tactics for choosing your bloodline powers. I'm not going to re-rate bloodlines based on these new options, but I will go through each bloodline and make a note at the end of any crappy powers that you should replace that power with one of these, and if it makes sense to take one as a bloodline feat, I'll include that in the Bloodline Feats section. I can pretty much summarize my suggestions here in a single sentence, though: If you're a blaster, make sure you consider these Bloodline Mutations, and if one of your first three bloodline powers is rated orange or red, you're probably better off trading for one of them as well.


Bloodrager Bloodlines 

Shapechanger Bloodline

The Bloodlines

Color code: red = bad choice, orange = mediocre choice, green = decent choice, blue = great choice, sky blue = the best choice


Melee (touch attacks!), everything else [Warped]

This bloodline comes from an aberration in your ancestry, and therefore obviously makes you look a little strange, though it luckly specifically states that the physical manifestations of your bloodline are only visible when they’re being used. Overall, it’s good for a melee-focused build, but not as good as some other bloodlines. Source = CRB.

Class Skill: Knowledge (dungeoneering) - Sadly, this skill just doesn’t come up that often unless you are in an underground-heavy campaign.

Bonus Spells: enlarge person (3rd), see invisibility (5th), tongues (7th), black tentacles (9th), feeblemind (11th), veil (13th), plane shift (15th), mind blank (17th), shapechange (19th). Enlarge person is a good start, and they’re mostly very good spells, until you hit veil :-( . For a melee build, this list is excellent, otherwise it’s just decent.

Bonus Feats: A decent list, definitely better than most. Combat Casting, Improved Unarmed Strike, and Improved Grapple are obviously meant for a melee build.

Arcana: Whenever you cast a polymorph spell, increase the duration by 50%. This could be very useful for a melee-focused build who likes to turn into a dragon or something. Sadly, this bloodline won’t work with the Dragon Disciple prestige class, which is what most melee-focused Sorcerers are going to be aiming for.

[Warped arcana:] This lets you give a random effect to the target of your polymorph spells, and while some of them are very good, others are relatively useless, or at least very situational. Since the effect is random, I don’t recommend it.

Bloodline Powers:

Acidic Ray: Only very slightly better than Acid Splash, which you can choose as a cantrip. Not worth it, so replace it with Blood Havoc.

[Warp Touch]: Dazing your enemies is really nice, so this one definitely beats Acidic Ray hands down.

Long Limbs: Excellent for delivering touch spells without provoking attacks of opportunity. It even increases with level, letting you deal touch spells from up to 20 feet away at 17th level. As far as Eldritch Heritage goes, this power would be very useful for a cleric who wants to focus on Inflict Critical Wounds.

Unusual Anatomy: A solid ability for a melee-focused build. Could come in handy against the occasional sneaky rogue or ranged sniper, too.

Alien Resistance: This is a decent ability, except that your healer will have to overcome spell resistance to heal you. That can be a deal-breaker.

Aberrant Form: Immune to criticals and sneak attacks?? DR 5/-?? Blindsight?? Awesome! However, it’s still not the best 20th-level power out there.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This bloodline isn't a good candidate for the EH feats or variant multiclassing because those options just don't get you to the good powers early enough to matter, and this bloodline is very top-heavy.

Final Thought: If you are trying to play a melee-focused Sorcerer that is NOT going for Dragon Disciple, this is one of your best options, no question. However, if you’re doing so, you’re going to be very sub-optimal no matter what bloodline you choose, thanks to the low BAB progression. To consider this bloodline for Eldritch Heritage, you’ll probably want to be a caster who can deal some serious damage or deliver some serious de-buffs with touch-range spells. I would suggest this bloodline as an EH choice for a Cleric, Oracle, or possibly even a Magus. While a Witch might find delivering touch spells at range useful, she’s probably still better off just using hexes instead.


Melee, summoning, everything else [Brutal]

This bloodline dishes out some serious demonic awesomeness, and is a great pick for someone wanting a Sorcerer who can beat up on people in melee. However, a melee Sorcerer build is almost always suboptimal, so be wary. Source = CRB.

Class Skill: Knoweledge (planes) - This skill comes up a lot, and can be extremely useful to identify an outsider’s elemental or alignment weakness.

Bonus Spells: cause fear (3rd), bull's strength (5th), rage (7th), stoneskin (9th), dismissal (11th), transformation (13th), greater teleport (15th), unholy aura (17th), summon monster IX (19th). This is a great list for a melee build, though rage and transformation are almost useless since you can’t cast spells during their effect. The summon monster 9 spell thrown on at the end is obviously meant to be used to summon demons to fight alongside you. For anyone non-melee oriented, this list is crap, sadly.

Bonus Feats: Augment Summoning is good, but otherwise unless you’re completely melee oriented, it’s painful.

Arcana: DR/good for your summoned creatures will be very useful at lower levels for keeping those summoned creatures around, and since it’s /good it would be excellent for a game in which you fight a lot of demons or devils. If you dipped a Cleric level to get the Aura class feature, you could combine this with the Sacred Summons feat to do some serious damage to evil outsiders, since your summoned creatures would then have DR /good AND could have good-aligned attacks.

[Brutal Arcana]: You can deal 2 extra points of damage when you cast a damaging spell. Not two points per damage dice, just two points. This is terrible compared to the normal bloodline arcana. Avoid at all costs.

Bloodline Powers:

Claws: Again, we’re looking at melee builds here almost exclusively. A pair of claws aren’t as exciting as something like Feral Mutagen, so this only get an orange.

Demon Resistances: Not so great, as a scroll can easily get you the same thing, and this only covers electricity, no other elemental types. You should consider replacing this one with Blood Intensity.

Strength of the Abyss: For a melee build, this is absolutely amazing. A total of +6 inherent bonus to Strength is just incredible. For a non-melee build, look elsewhere.

[Wings of the Abyss]: Wings are cool, but you’re most likely trying to go melee with this build, and giving up +6 to Str is a horrible idea.

Added Summonings: This one is really sweet, since it lets you add an extra demon or fiendish creature to your summon spells. At lower levels, you’ll be summoning fiendish animals, but as soon as you can summon demons, you get two for the price of one, which is REALLY nice. Note, that this will stack with Superior Summons, so you could very quickly cover the whole battlefield in demons, which is AWESOME.

Demonic Might: Wow. Immunity to electricity and poison, resistance to all the other elemental types, and telepathy. This one is cool.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: Strength of the Abyss can be grabbed at 11th level with Improved Eldritch Heritage, which makes it viable since you can skip the demon resistances power as well. VMC is still pretty weak, though.

Final Thought: This bloodline is another one that’s most useful for a melee-focused character, so if you’re playing a straight Sorcerer you’re probably not going to take it. Multiclassing with this bloodline could be very interesting, however. If you came up with a Sorcerer/Cleric character, this bloodline could significantly boost your summoned creatures’ survival at lower levels, thanks to the Arcana mixed with Sacred Summons. Eldritch Heritage with this bloodline would be amazing for pretty much any melee character, especially a Barbarian, but you’ve got to be willing to invest three feats to get to Strength of the Abyss, so a fighter might be more realistic. No matter what you’re trying to do, the Brutal Wildblooded version of this one is a stinker, so avoid it.


Debuffing, everything else

This bloodline is based on the idea that your ancestors were either cursed by a hag or possibly even included one, and it’s excellent for a Sorcerer who wants to focus on debuffing her enemies. Source = Ultimate Magic.

Class Skill: Perception - Arguably the most important skill in the game, and you get it added to your class skill list! This is a HUGE boost for any Sorcerer, and makes taking Eldritch Heritage (Accursed) much more bearable for a non-Sorcerer.

Bonus Spells: ray of enfeeblement (3rd), touch of idiocy (5th), ray of exhaustion (7th), bestow curse (9th), feeblemind (11th), eyebite (13th), insanity (15th), dimensional lock (17th), energy drain (19th). This is a great list of spells, all of them being very useful in almost any battle.

Bonus Feats: Alertness and Combat Casting are the stars here, though Great Fortitude can always be helpful to a caster also.

Arcana: This is possibly the least useful bloodline arcana out there, UNLESS you are in a party with one or more witches.

Bloodline Powers:

Horrific Visage: A decent debuff, but it would be MUCH more useful if it stacked with other fear effects.

Wretched Endurance: This is a nice boost to saves against several effects, though several of them are based on Will saves which are probably reasonably high for you.

Dread Gaze: A really nice debuff, since staggered is hugely detrimental to full-attacking enemies. This one’s a keeper.

Dream Walker: Ethereal jaunt is fun, but will only be situationally useful. Casting nightmare on a creature you come across is also very situational. This one is flavorful but not that super useful.

Fearsome Survival: You know what? Compared to other 20th-level Sorcerer powers, this one kinda falls flat. DR is always nice, but SR can cause problems with healing.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This bloodline is pretty weak on its own, and without gaining the bonus spells it's just not worth your time.

Final Thought: This bloodline is... strange. When you look at the spells, you think “WOW, what a great bloodline!” Then you look at the feats... then the arcana... then the powers... and your face falls. For a debuffing-focused Sorcerer, the bloodline powers and spells here would be really good, but you are missing out on what could be a REALLY GOOD arcana for this crappy one. If your group has one or two witches in it, this bloodline would probably go from orange to green. Along with that, I wish I could say this is a good bloodline to use with Eldritch Heritage, but the powers are just not that great. A Witch would be much better off spending her feats on Extra Hex than on these mediocre powers.

Let me point out that if you’re in a campaign with the Leadership feat open to you, and you’re playing a Witch, you should definitely have a Sorcerer with this bloodline (or even just have any other class with a one-level dip) as your your cohort so that he/she can spend a standard action every round boosting your spells by one caster level. In fact, you could have a ton of first-level subordinates that all do it every round, as bonuses from the aid another action stack!

The only character that I would consider doing Eldritch Heritage (Accursed) with is a half-elf Magus. This is because you can use your Skill Focus at first level for Perception, thus freeing up one of those spell slots. Then you take Eldritch Heritage and maybe use Horrific Visage a few times, but then Improved Eldritch Heritage gets you Dread Gaze and that one can really mess up your enemies while you’re wailing on them with full-attack spellstrikes. Actually, a half-elf Summoner might find it very useful too, so that you can debuff enemies while your Eidolon does his thing.


Summoning, battlefield control, everything else [Seaborn]

Aquatic Sorcerers are obviously very at-home in the water, and so most people NOT playing in an underwater or nautical campaign would just pass this one up without reading it. I hope to make a convincing argument that it should be considered for ALL sorcerers, but especially battlefield control builds. Source = APG.

Class Skill: Swim - If you’re playing in a nautical campaign, this will be useful during the first few levels. However, at 3rd level you gain a Swim speed, at which point Swim checks are almost unnecessary.

Bonus Spells: hydraulic push* (3rd), slipstream* (5th), aqueous orb* (7th), geyser* (9th), control water (11th), beast shape IV (13th), summon monster VII (15th), seamantle* (17th), world wave* (19th). The first two spells aren’t that great, but aqueous orb and geyser are great spells, and you learn geyser at one level earlier than you normally would as a sorcerer, so enjoy it!

Bonus Feats: These are decent, especially Brew Potion, which can be extremely useful for buffing your allies when you don’t have many spell slots left. Toughness is always good for a caster, as is Dodge.

Arcana: This one is decent, especially for summoning in an aquatic game. Even if you’re in a regular game, summoning water elementals and having them do extra damage AND stick around for extra rounds is nice.

[Seaborn arcana]: Boosting your caster level is always a great idea, and at lower levels you’re getting summoned creatures to stick around longer while also getting extra damage with blasting spells. This is probably just a LITTLE bit better than the normal Aquatic arcana, since your summoned creatures won’t do extra damage with this one.

Bloodline Powers:

Dehydrating Touch: This is a nice power at low levels, because of the sickening ability that doesn’t have a save associated with it.

[Water Blast]: Dehydrating touch is probably a bit better than this one, but knocking your enemies prone can be a lifesaver to your melee buddies.

Aquatic Adaptation: Again, this is pretty sweet. A swim speed can be very useful situationally, and natural armor and cold resistance is very nice.

Aquatic Telepathy: I like this power also, even though it’s definitely situational. If you don’t come across any aquatic creatures or water elementals, it’s relatively useless, until 15th level when you can call some seriously powerful creatures to your side to aid you, such as an Elder Water Elemental, without using up a spell slot!

Raise the Deep: This is an incredible ability, because at 15th level when you gain this ability you can cause 675,000 cubic feet (150ft. x 150ft. x 30ft.) of water to magically rise from the ground, even in the middle of the desert, forcing every creature nearby to swim around and probably start drowning. It only lasts 15 rounds, but WOW is that amazing. And since you have a swim speed and can breathe under water, it doesn’t affect you at all.

Deep One: This is just.. wow. You gain blindsense out of the water, DR, cold resistance, and continuous freedom of movement, and when you’re in the water (like when you use Raise the Deep), you gain blindSIGHT 120. That’s just crazy good.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This is another case where the good bloodline arcana don't come in early enough for this to be worth giving up between four and half your feats for, unless you're playing in a game where a swim speed will come in handy all the time.

Final Thought: This is honestly one of the better bloodlines out there, and like I said in the intro paragraph, most people probably just gloss over it because they assume you’d need to be in an aquatic campaign for it to be useful. That’s totally not the case, since many of the abilities gained here are just as useful for a water-elemental-summoning Sorcerer as for a truly aquatic sorcerer. As far as Eldritch Heritage goes, this bloodline should be jumped on by anyone in a sea-faring or otherwise aquatic campaign, as Aquatic Adaptation and Raise the Deep would be HUGE helps to anyone that needs to deal with the water, and you would likely already need the Swim skill, so Skill Focus on it isn’t going to kill you. I could see a Cleric combining these abilities with the abilities and spells of the Oceans subdomain to absolutely devastating consequences for his enemies.


Versatility, battlefield control, everything else [Sage - Multiclassing, Versatility]

The arcane bloodline is considered by many to be the best bloodline, and honestly those people are right. For a traditional sorcerer, who doesn’t try to focus on just a single trick but is more versatile, this is probably the best bloodline. The fluff here is that your family were excellent wizards, and some of the magic of your ancestors rubbed off on them and, subsequently, you. Source = CRB.

Class Skill: Knowledge (any) - Versatile and useful, picking a Knowledge skill as your class skill is one of the best Bloodline class skill options out there, maybe right behind Perception.

Bonus Spells: identify (3rd), invisibility (5th), dispel magic (7th), dimension door(9th), overland flight (11th), true seeing (13th), greater teleport (15th), power word stun (17th), wish (19th). Some of the best Sorcerer/Wizard spells are on this list, though identify is a painful start, as a wand of identify is infinitely better than having it as a spell known. Invisibility, dimension door and overland flight quickly make up for that, though.

Bloodline Feats: This just keeps getting better and better. Combat Casting, Improved Initiative, Scribe Scroll, and Spell Focus are all really great choices, and even the not-so-great choices on this list are still good. You’ll probably end up spending regular feats on some of these also.

Arcana: Honestly, this isn’t the best arcana out there, but it’s decent, and you’ll likely be using metamagic feats a LOT because of the bloodline powers you get, so you’ll get plenty of use out of it.

[Sage arcana]: This arcana is just... crazy good. It lets you use your Int instead of Cha for all Sorcerer abilities, which means you can dump Cha and get tons more skill points thanks to your higher Int. You’re no longer going to be the party face for Diplomacy checks, but you can truly replace the Wizard thanks to this ability.

Bloodline Powers:

Arcane Bond: Incredible. Amazing. Breathtaking. These are just some of the words you’ll use to describe this bloodline power. You can either gain a familiar, which gives you a bonus based on its type (I like the compsognathus for +4 to initiative) and also gives you access to Improved Familiar later on, OR you gain a bonded item which gives you an extra spell slot of any level you can cast per day. That’s just bloody fantastic.

[Arcane Bolt]: CRAP! You got one of the best bloodline arcanas ever but you lose the best part of the Arcane bloodline! Force damage is nice, but compared to Arcane Bond this is just terrible. Replace this with Blood Havoc for sure!

Metamagic Adept: Really REALLY good for you, since one of the difficulties with spontaneous casters is the increased spellcasting time for metamagic spells. You’ll find that the ability’s uses per day are very limiting, but still this is a great power.

New Arcana: An excellent ability, given how limiting your spells known are. If only you got more than three spells from it. An interesting note on this ability: If you choose it using Improved Eldritch Heritage, you gain a new spell known from the Sorcerer/Wizard list. This is exceptionally useful for a Bard, Summoner or Oracle, as they get access to spells they wouldn’t otherwise have! Make sure you realize, however, that getting spell access is probably not the intended consequence of this power, so your DM might say “no chance!”

School Power: Very nice! This essentially doubles your Spell Focus feat bonus to spell DCs. Even if you haven’t gone the route of focusing on one school, use this for your Necromancy spells and watch the saving throws fail all around you.

Arcane Apotheosis: There really isn’t any better ability for a straight caster Sorcerer than this, although you probably won’t be using your spell slots to power magic items that often since they are a precious commodity to you. I guess you could use a few level 1 slots to save a charge on a high-level staff or something. Either way, the first half of this power is where it’s at.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: Now THIS is what we're talking about. You get a familiar or a bonded item, you get to cast metamagic spells without boosting your casting time to a full round, and you get three spells from the sorcerer/wizard list. This would be useful for absolutely ANY spontaneous spellcaster, especially divine ones. I would personally choose this as a VMC for an Oracle or Hunter, no question.

Final Thought: As you can see, there are very good reasons that many people consider this bloodline to be the best one. Being able to metamagic as well or better than a wizard is just amazing, and personally I love the flavor of a Sorcerer with a familiar. Also remember that you can cast spells on your familiar that normally would not affect creatures of its type, so if you get Improved Familiar later on you can do things like cast Form of the Dragon on your mephit familiar and it can become a decent frontline fighter for a while. If you go Sage, you’re getting to use Int for everything, which makes you a much more well-rounded character and can let you fill more party roles (such as the rogue-type) than if you had to keep that Charisma score high.


Melee, everything else [Rime-blooded]

This bloodline gives a sorcerer the powers of their ancestors raised on snowy mountains. If your sorcerer is going into the arctic, this is the bloodline for you. This is another one that really is best for a melee-focused build, though. Source = APG.

Class Skill: Survival - This is a decent skill for any adventurer, so no one should be upset to see it added to their class skill list.

Bonus Spells: enlarge person (3rd), rage (5th), elemental aura* (cold only) (7th), wall of ice (9th), cone of cold(11th), transformation (13th), giant form I (15th), polar ray (17th), meteor swarm (dealing cold damage) (19th). Decent spells for the most part, but rage and transformation both kill your spellcasting ability, so they’re mostly useless to you, and they really drag the others down..

Bonus Feats: This is a good list of feats for a melee-based build, as Arcane Strike, Power Attack and Toughness are solid choices. Exotic Weapon Proficiency is interesting, because it opens up a lot of weapons that you wouldn’t even consider using otherwise.

Arcana: Nothing to write home about. You can get bonuses to spell DCs for elemental-type spells several different ways already, so this could have been better. It’s thematic, though.

[Rime-blooded arcana]: This one is cool, because you get to slow down your enemies with every successful cold-based spell. I’m a fan.

Bloodline Powers:

Cold Steel: Great for melee builds and also really cool to buff your teammates when you need to fight something with cold vulnerability. A little situational, but a decent power.

Icewalker: Even more situational than Cold Steel. Climbing on the side of sheer icy cliffs would be super disorienting, but vastly cool. Might be worth trading out for Blood Intensity.

Snow Shroud: This one is pretty cool. You can give yourself concealment without taking any of the penalties associated with it, then you can just sit inside blasting away, safe from archers. Very cool.

[Freezing Bolt]: Sadly this one falls short compared to Snow Shroud. Not a bad blasting ability, but if you’re a blaster you want to use spells to do it since you can boost the damage more easily. You could always trade it out for Blood Piercing, though!

Blizzard: A solid debuff/damaging ability, but the flat one use per day bumps it down to orange instead of green.

Child of Ancient Winters: A fun, thematic capstone, but aren’t you forgetting that fire damage is one of the most common types in the game? And now you’re vulnerable to it? NO THANK YOU!

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This one is a good candidate for Eldritch Heritage for a melee build to pick up both cold steel and snow shroud. I don't think it's worth losing half your feats through VMC though.

Final Thought: This bloodline really doesn’t make sense for anyone who isn’t going to be spending a lot of time in chilly places. The spells are mediocre at best, the feats are alright, and the powers are decent except for the capstone. In fact, this one is definitely a worthy contender for a multiclasser, maybe a Ranger/Sorcerer who takes a cold terrain as his favored terrain? If you’re a character who would benefit from Skill Focus (Survival) anyway, such as a Druid or Ranger, you might consider doing Eldritch Heritage with this bloodline to pick up Cold Steel and Snow Shroud, both of which would be solid abilities for either class.


Summoning, buffing, everything else [Empyreal - Multiclassing]

This bloodline represents a very common theme in fantasy literature - the hero who was descended from celestial beings such as angels or devas. As would be expected, this confers some heavenly abilities on a Sorcerer with the Celestial bloodline, and also aids her in calling celestial beings to her service. Source = CRB.

Class Skill: Heal - Not a terribly important or useful skill for an arcane spellcaster, sadly.

Bonus Spells: bless (3rd), resist energy (5th), magic circle against evil (7th), remove curse (9th), flame strike (11th), greater dispel magic (13th), banishment (15th), sunburst (17th), gate (19th). As you would expect from a Celestial bloodline, several of the spells here are normally only open to divine spellcasters, so those can be really nice to have around. Bless is an awesome early buff for your party, and magic circle against evil can let you summon a new creature every round right in the midst of a battle without getting targeted. greater dispel and banishment are really nice, and gate at 19th level can bring in the big guns when you really need it to count. Flame strike is a great way for a blaster-type Sorcerer to get around immunity to fire and stilly apply metamagic effects like Dazing Spell. Overall, a very good list of bonus spells.

Bonus Feats: This list has a few gems and a few strange ones in it. Dodge, Iron Will, and Weapon Finesse are solid and useful for most any character, but especially one with low Strength and Wisdom who can’t wear armor. Mounted Combat and Ride By Attack are obviously assuming you want to be a mounted Sorcer, which doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me.

Arcana: This is the good-aligned version of the arcana for the Abyssal bloodline, and it’s just as good here for a summoning-focused build. Use this to summon something inherently evil like a demon or devil, and they’ll essentially have DR/-.

[Empyreal Arcana]: This is definitely the reason you took Empyreal. Have you ever wanted to make a monk/sorcerer? This is how you do it. This arcana lets you use your Wisdom score in place of Cha for every Sorcerer ability, which is very cool indeed.

Bloodline Powers:

Heavenly Fire: This is a decent ability not for the damage that it deals (which is relatively weak) but for the possibility of healing your allies, as long as they’re good aligned. This can also be used to keep your summoned creatures (assuming you added the celestial template to them) up for a little bit longer.

Celestial Resistances: Resisting acid and cold is fine, but there are better bloodline powers out there. Consider trading it for Blood Intensity.

Wings of Heaven: Now we’re talking! Wings that you can use for minutes per day without expending a spell slot. Sign me up!

[Sacred Cistern]: You gain a limited channel energy as if you were a cleric of your level - 4. This is a decent ability, and can save your party’s butt in a real sticky situation.

Conviction: Luck-style abilities that allow rerolls are ALWAYS excellent, and this is no exception. This can turn a bad day into a good one, if you use it on the right roll.

Ascension: This is a fun and very thematic capstone. Immunity to two energy types and resistance to two others is excellent, and you can fly around constantly (Unless you chose to go Empyreal, which means you didn't get the wings in the first place!). Don’t forget the constant tongues ability too.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: I could see grabbing this one for the heavenly fire power using Eldritch Heritage, but the other powers don't really warrant losing half your feats to VMC.

Final Thought: This is a nice, all-around good bloodline, and is easy to theme a character around. It’s not the best out there, mostly becuase Arcane is just so good. For a summoning-centric Sorcerer, however, this might be the right choice, and you can go around acting like a Paladin with your angel wings if you want, without the stupid Code of Conduct tying you down. If you go for Empyreal, it’s obvious that you want to be able to stack Wisdom while dumping Charisma, and there’s nothing wrong with that. A Sorc/Cleric or Sorc/Druid is an excellent way to go into Mystic Theurge if you’re so inclined. Eldritch Heritage misses out on the better parts of this bloodline (spells and arcana), so unless you REALLY want to grow angel wings, I’d stay away from it.


Debuffing, battlefield control, everything else

You have a Daemon lurking somewhere along your family tree. Sends chills up your spine, doesn’t it? This one is another evil-based bloodline, and therefore it’s not for someone trying to be cuddly or nice. Source = Pathfinder Player Companion: Blood of Fiends.

Class Skill: Heal - Not a terribly important or useful skill for an arcane spellcaster, sadly.

Bonus Spells: ray of enfeeblement (3rd), touch of idiocy (5th), vampiric touch (7th), contagion (9th), blight (11th), circle of death (13th), waves of exhaustion (15th), horrid wilting (17th), soul bind (19th). This spell list is just made of win for a debuffer, though you’re going to need to get up close and personal to deliver all of those touch-range spells. You could always invest in the Reach Spell feat, though, which would make it much easier to get those spells to stick without running in and risking your butt.

Bonus Feats: The feats presented here are actually really interesting, but have one really big flaw... the good ones have prerequisites that a single-classed Sorcerer can never fulfull! For example, if you chose Heroic Defiance, then once per day you could delay a negative effect on you (such as paralysis) by one round, and that would give you time to cast surmount affliction and have the effect delayed much longer, BUT Heroic Defiance requires Diehard, Endurance, and a +8 base Fortitude save! Heroic Recovery is also great, since you can choose to reroll a saving throw once per day, but at least you can eventually get the required +4 base Fort save for this one. I’ve gotta rate this low because of the insane prereqs, but it really could have been one of the best set of bloodline feats out there... I would recommend taking some of the Bloodline Mutations instead of these feats.

Arcana: This is a good arcana if you want to go with the thematic representation that your soul is corrupted, so killing others fuels your spellcasting, but mechanically this isn’t a very good ability. It doesn’t stack with other increases to caster level, and that’s painful. As an arcane caster, you’re probably already going to have permanent increases to your caster level (such as the Varisian Tattoo feat), and that type of ability makes this arcana useless.

Bloodline Powers:

Wasting Ray: This is the reason you took this bloodline (or Eldritch Heritage). This ability is so unbelievably good for a first-level ability that I can’t even see straight as I’m typing this. You can cause an enemy to take 1d6 nonlethal damage per round, with an increasing Fort save each roung, until they pass out. If they do pass out, they’ll DIE from thirst in a few minutes. Thats just crazy good.

Daemonic Resistances: Just like the resistances you gain from the Celestial and Abyssal bloodlines, this ends up being a rather mediocre bloodline power. Consider trading it for Blood Intensity.

Age Out: What the what?? This... is awesome! This ability essentially allows you to trade away a debilitating effect such as paralysis or blindness to take a -1 penalty to Strength, Dex, and Con. The thing is, a -1 penalty to ability scores has essentially no mechanical effect! Now, this is assuming your character is younger than middle age. If that’s not the case, you’ll want to be more careful about when you use this ability, as you’ll take a -2 to each physical ability score instead of a -1.

Wound Warp: You can teleport through dead creatures wounds, dealing acid damage to adjacent creatures!. While gross, this is both thematically and mechanically awesome, and I highly recommend it, even though the damage is pretty low for the level.

One WIth Abaddon: Again, just like the other heavenly and hellish lineages, this capstone isn’t that impressive. The earlier powers really do make up for this one, though.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: Wasting Ray is obscenely good, and would be a good candidate for Eldritch Heritage. Age out is also really good, so I'd say this is even a good candidate for VMC as well, if you're interested in not being affected by ANY debilitating conditions, and the flavor is very strong as well. While Heal isn't a useful skill for an arcane caster, if you go into the EH feat line with an Oracle or other divine caster, having Skill Focus (Heal) could come in very handy.

Final Thought: After writing this, the Daemon bloodline is one of my new favorites. Between the great bonus spells and the excellent bloodline powers, I’ll be building a Daemon Sorcerer in the near future, no question. As for Eldritch Heritage, I could definitely see a neutral cleric of an evil god being interested in Wasting Ray and Age Out. Even a particularly spiteful Paladin could find use for those two abilities. If only the bonus feats and arcana were more impressive, this could have been almost as good as Arcane. Almost.

Deep Earth

Battlefield control, everything else [Bedrock - summoning]

You’ve got some stone in your blood, whether you’re a Dwarf, the ancestor of an Oread, or some other, stranger combination. This bloodline is all about manipulation of stone and earth, so it’d be great for an underground campaign. Source = APG.

Class Skill: Knowledge (dungeoneering) - Sadly, this skill just doesn’t come up often enough to be a good choice, though if you know ahead of time that you’ll be fighting a lot of aberrations it will work out well for you. If you’re going to be in an underground campaign (and honestly, if you’re not then you shouldn’t be looking at this bloodline) this becomes green.

Bonus Spells: expeditious excavation* (3rd), darkvision (5th), shifting sand* (7th), stoneskin (9th), spike stones (11th), stone tell (13th), repel metal or stone(15th), earthquake (17th), clashing rocks* (19th). This is a good list of spells. Expeditious excavation is a good early replacement for create pit. Darkvision is good, unless you’re a race that already has darkvision, in which case it’s pretty useless. Shifting sand is sort of like entangle except that you get to move the affected area, which is great. Finally, you get up to clashing rocks which is just awe-inspiring to imagine.

Bonus Feats: This is a really good list of feats, because Alertness, Skill Focus (Perception), and Blind-Fight will help you see enemies and avoid attacks, while Nimble Moves, Acrobatic Step and Stealthy will help you move around in the super difficult terrain that you create with your spells.

Arcana: This is a decent ability as long as you assume you’ll be underground a lot. Otherwise, obviously it’ll be useless.

[Bedrock arcana]: Your summoned creatures gain DR/adamantine, and that’s really excellent. In fact, that’s better than the alignment-based DR that some of those other arcana give them, because you’re likely to fight creatuers that can actually bypass it. Not much bypasses adamantine except adamantine and high-level enhancement bonuses.

Bloodline Powers:

Tremor: Another way to trip an enemy. Between this, expeditious excavation, and shifting sands, you shouldn’t be leaving any of your opponents standing.

Rockseer: At first, this is a weak ability, but as soon as you get tremorsense you’ve just destroyed any chance of a rogue sneaking up on you, and if you’re ever blinded by a spell, you’re not completely useless like the fighter in your party would be.

Crystal Shard: Free bane special ability for your frontline fighter? YES PLEASE KTHXBAI!

[Iron Hide]: Now you get to have DR/adamantine yourself? This one’s at least as good as Crystal Shard, and probably better, honestly.

Earth Glide: This is a great ability, because you can use it to retreat from a battle you’re having trouble winning, you can walk over to a stone wall, go inside it, and move up to the ceiling to fire at enemies, or you can just use it to get through that cavern wall into the treasure chamber without setting off the trap on the door.

Strength of the Stone: Holy crap... you become immune to bull rush, drag, grapple, reposition, trip, push AND pull. That’s just insane. AND you get DR 10/adamantine. This is one of the best bloodline capstones out there, by far. (Quick sidenote though, if you went with Bedrock, you’ve already got DR 10/adamantine, so that’s a little saddening.)

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: I actually think this bloodline is one of those that works better for EH or VMC than it does as an actual bloodline... Tremor is great, Rockseer and Crystal Shard are both excellent as well. I only with there was some way to grab that Strength of the Stone. I'd say the major detriment to this one is having to take Skill Focus (Knowledge[Dungeoneering]) to go into the EH feat line with it.

Final Thought: This seriously is one of the better bloodlines for a straight Sorcerer, assuming that you’ll spend at least a fair amount of time underground. Obviously if you’re going to be in a sea-faring campaign, you don’t want this bloodline. As far as Eldritch Heritage goes, I could definitely see a Fighter, Ranger, or other frontline melee character taking this for Tremor, Crystal Shard, and maybe even the Earth Glide ability.


Buffing, everything else [Karmic]

Your family has... some kind of destiny? That you’re supposed to fulfill? Okay the fluff for this one is a little dumb, but it gives you a bunch of luck bonuses which aren’t generally easy to come by, so I’ll give it a chance. Source = CRB.

Class Skill: Knowledge (history) - This one doesn’t come up too terribly often, but you will probably find a use for it.

Bonus Spells: alarm (3rd), blur (5th), protection from energy (7th), freedom of movement (9th), break enchantment (11th), mislead (13th), spell turning (15th), moment of prescience (17th), foresight (19th). This is definitely a mixed bag of spells. The high level spells are completely non-combat, and if that’s for you, cool, but I like to see my 8th and 9th level spells deal some damage or debilitate a whole slew of enemies.

Bonus Feats: This is a pretty lame set of bonus feats, especially if your DM doesn’t allow Leadership. I’m underwhelmed here.

Arcana: Buff yourself, and you get a luck bonus on all of your saving throws. That sounds good, but it only lasts one round! That’s almost useless!

[Karmic arcana]: If you fail your concentration check to cast defensively, an adjacent enemy provokes an attack of opportunity from one of your allies. This is a cool ability, and definitely better than that other Arcana, though you’ll probably hope that you won’t have ot use it that often.

Bloodline Powers:

Touch of Destiny: This is a decent ability, because buffing your allies is almost as good as debuffing your enemies. Insight bonuses aren’t quite as rare as luck bonuses, but I say take what you can get.

[Fate’s Retribution]: This is another power that you will hope you hardly ever have to use, because it involves an enemy landing a hit on you.

Fated: This ability gives you a bonus to saves during the surprise round and “when you are otherwise unaware of an attack”. This badly worded sentence is essentially saying if you’re flat-footed, you get a bonus. It’s okay, but nothing exciting.

It Was Meant to Be: This lets you re-roll a d20, which is good, but sadly it’s restricted to rolls to overcome spell resistance, which makes it a bit weak.

Within Reach: Save yourself from death once per day. Definitely situationally useful, but still not one of the most useful powers out there.

Destiny Realized: Finally, a power worth using! If only you didn’t have to wait til 20th level for it! This essentially makes you immune to critical hits, and you auto-confirm any crits you make with spells. Pretty cool, but way too late to save this bloodline.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: Though you are drpooing the worst parts of this bloodline by going EH or VMC (the arcana is just atrocious) it's still just not very strong.

Final Thought: This is just an overall weak bloodline, and even the fluff text is weak and doesn’t have much in the way of flavor. Stay away from this one and all of its derivatives, trust me.


Debuffing, everything else

You're the distant relative of neutral evil outsiders called divs. Divs are corruptors at heart, and love to make beautiful things sour and wilt before them. Source = Pathfinder Player Companion: People of the Sands.

Class Skill: Knowledge (planes) - This is an obvious choice for an outsider-based Sorcerer, and comes up a lot when identifying all types of outsiders.

Bonus Spells: disguise self (3rd), touch of idiocy (5th), deeper darkness (7th), bestow curse (9th), insect plague (11th), disintegrate (13th), insanity (15th), earthquake (17th), wish (19th). This bloodline is all about debuffing, and this selection of spells definitely reflects that. A few of them require touch attacks, which is painful for a Sorcerer generally, but overall this is a good mix of bloodline spells.

Bonus Feats: This is a decent set of bloodline feats, Improved Init is always helpful and Persuasive sits very well with the basic idea of the bloodline.

Arcana: With the debuffing focus of this bloodline, the arcana is actually really great, because you can drop an area effect spell on a group of enemies and then get a bonus to your spell DCs for several rounds!

Bloodline Powers:

Spoiling Touch: Imposing the broken condition on an enemy's items or weapons doesn't sound that great, but I'm giving this green for what it can do to the firearms of enemy Gunslingers... if you can get close enough to cause the broken condition on their gun, you're going to be the hero of the party!

Div Resistances: Fire resistance is useful because it's a common energy type, and bonuses against poisons are always good, so this is a good power.

Corrupting Aura: This power is great for a bad-guy running in to the middle of a party, and I can see a GM using this to take his party's abilities down, but for a PC, this is just a bad choice, since it'll often be affecting your allies and it kills divine spellcasting that might heal or buff you, so this is a red. Trade it out for Blood Piercing for sure.

Squander: This is a great debuffing power, as causing the staggered condition on your enemies can, in some cases, make them less than useful in a fight.

Ahriman's Favor: As a 20th level power, this is super weak. Immunity to two elements is nice, but nothing really special at 20th level, and seeing in any type of darkness is super useful but still not powerful enough.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: Breaking guns is pretty awesome for a front-line fighter, and the div resistances can come in handy as well, so I'd say this one is worth the investment if you can afford the feats.

Final Thought: For a debuffer build, this is a great bloodline, but remember that if you're trying to be a debuffer then you should really be a Witch instead. Overall, not a bad option!


Blasting, battlefield control, everything else

You have some of the power of air genies in your heritage, and it gives you power of the air and lightning. If you want to be a Sith Lord, shooting lightning out of your fingertips all the time, this is the way to go. Source = UM.

Class Skill: Knoweledge (planes) - This skill comes up a lot, and can be extremely useful to identify an outsider’s elemental or alignment weakness.

Bonus Spells: shocking grasp (3rd), invisibility (5th), fly (7th), minor creation (9th), overland flight (11th), chain lightning (13th), plane shift (15th), greater planar binding (17th), wish (19th). This spell list is a good combination of utility and blasting spells. The only complaint I have here is that you can already make non-electricity blasting spells into electricity damage, so having shocking grasp and chain lightning on your known spell list actually makes you lose a little bit of versatility.

Bonus Feats: This set of feats is pretty nice. It includes Improved Initiative, which any arcane caster should consider getting. You can also choose Dodge and Empower Spell, both of which are solid feats.

Arcana: This arcana lets you change your elemental-based spells to electricity on the fly. It can be useful, but is definitely not as good as other arcana out there.

Bloodline Powers:

Electricity Ray: This power would be better spent on something else, especially since you can cast Acid Splash and turn it into electricity damage already. However, you can trade it for Blood Havoc and get a bunch of bonus damage with your shocking grasp and chain lightning spells, at minimum, so do that instead.

Elemental Resistance: Electricity resistance 10 at 3rd level is pretty sweet, and it increases to resistance 20 at 9th level. Usually I’m not a fan of elemental resistance bloodline powers, but most of them are much MUCH weaker than this one.

Whirlwind: Turning into a whirlwind is pretty cool, but it would be a lot better if you could use it more often as you go up in levels. Since you probably chose this bloodline for blasting, consider taking Blood Piercing instead.

Elemental Movement: Gaining a permanent fly speed at level 15 is alright, but look at your bonus spell list! You just made two of your spells completely useless (at least for yourself)! It’s still a great ability though.

Power of the Djinn: Limited wish as a spell-like ability is extremely sweet, because you don’t have to pay 1,500gp every time you use it! Add this to complete immunity to electricity damage and plane shift as a spell-like ability, and you’ve got a pretty nice capstone.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: There's nothing really great or terrible about this one, as an electricity ray might come in handy for some and elemental resistance is pretty good. Overall, a resounding "meh".

Final Thought: This is a pretty nice bloodline, and if you imagine your character being in tune with the elemental plane of air, it’s probably a little bit better and more versatile than the Elemental bloodline would be (though they are VERY similar). The capstone ability to cast limited wish for free is really the tide-turner here.


Melee, transformations, blasting, everything else [Linnorm - ranged] [Esoteric dragons - everything] [Imperial dragons - debuffing] [Outer dragons - nothing different] [Primal dragons - blasting]

You can trace your ancestry back to one or more dragons, giving you some of their more bestial yet powerful arcane abilities. The abilities in this bloodline are pretty melee-focused (though you can go Wildblooded and trade melee for close range, if you like) and so if you’re picking this bloodline, you’re most likely going to eventually go into the Dragon Disciple prestige class, which I strongly approve of. Source = CRB.

Recently, a whole slew of new options have opened up for the Draconic bloodline in the form of variant draconic bloodlines found in the Legacy of Dragons book. Each of these variants alters the bloodline arcana as well as opening up new energy types for your breath weapon and immunities. I'll try to list all of them here, but if I miss any, please let me know!

Class Skill: Perception - Arguably the most important skill in the game, and you get it added to your class skill list! This is a HUGE boost for any Sorcerer, and makes taking Eldritch Heritage (Draconic) much more bearable for a non-Sorcerer.

Bonus Spells: mage armor (3rd), resist energy (5th), fly (7th), fear (9th), spell resistance (11th), form of the dragon I (13th), form of the dragon II (15th), form of the dragon III (17th), wish (19th). A nice set of spells, obviously dragon-themed. Wish at the end is a nice little bonus. The only real issue is that you've got all three form of the dragon spells on the list, when really you would want to drop the lower-level ones when you get the higher-level.

Bonus Feats: This is a good set of feats, especially for someone going into the Dragon Disciple PrC later on. Toughness, Power Attack, and Blind-Fight will help your melee abilities, while Improved Initiative and Quicken Spell are some of the best feats for casters in the whole game.

Arcana: An extra point of damage per damage dice doesn’t sound like a whole lot, but at higher levels when you start dealing 15-20d6 worth of damage, this can make a HUGE difference. This is a great ability.

[Linnorm Arcana]: This is a decent ability at low levels, when you wouldn’t normally have any natural armor, but as soon as Dragon Resistances kicks in this becomes almost useless, since they don’t stack.

[Esoteric dragons Arcana]: This alternate bloodline arcana is fabulous, making all of your spells treated as psychic magic instead of arcane magic. This means that you can cast ALL your spells without any somatic, material, or verbal components. The best part about that is that you can cast your spells IN ANY FORM. You wanna be a tiny rat riding on someone's shoulder? You can still cast ALL your spells, no problems. The only thing you have to watch out for is emotion effects... good thing you have a high Will save, right?

[Imperial dragons Arcana]: You get a boost to your fear-causing spells, which is fine but nothing exciting.

[Outer dragons Arcana]: Wow, this is pathetic. When you cast a specific type of energy spell that happens to require an attack roll, you get to cause the target to get no five-foot step for a round. BOOORING!

[Primal dragons Arcana]: Hands down one of the best arcanas out there for a blaster character. If you're using a spell that deals the damage type of your lineage, you get to REROLL DAMAGE DICE (though only up to half the spell's level). Still, when you REALLY need that lightning bolt to take out the big bad guy, this could make all the difference.

Bloodline Powers:

Claws: I’m on the fence with this one. A pair of claws isn’t as powerful as a two-handed weapon, for the most part. I would have preferred to see something like imbuing your weapon with your draconic bloodline’s element or something instead. If you're not going for a melee build, trade this out for Blood Havoc.

[Elemental Spit]: This is another 1d6 + ½ level damage bloodline power, and just like with the rest of them I say there are so many better choices out there. There is absolutely zero reason that you shouldn't trade this one out for Blood Havoc.

Dragon Resistances: This one is a little bit better than Celestial and Abyssal resistances because it includes some Natural Armor bonus along with resistance to your element.

Breath Weapon: This would be great if you could use it more than once per day at 9th level, but as it is, it’s a weak 9th-level power. Add onto this the fact that you don’t get to add an extra +1 damage per dice to this because it’s not a spell, and it really just isn’t a great ability. Consider trading this out for Blood Piercing.

Wings: Permanent ability to fly at 15th is a nice ability, and I like that you can dismiss the wings so that you don’t look like a monster in cities and towns. This is another case, though, where you’ve made one of your bloodline bonus spells (fly) completely useless.

Power of Wyrms: You get several immunities, and blindsense 60 feet, which is pretty sweet. This isn’t the best capstone out there, but it’s solid.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: If you're looking to pick up claws, go look at the Ghoul bloodline instead, trust me. However, for the flavor of being part-dragon, this one gives you some decent powers, and the bonus feat list is excellent for those who decide to VMC this one. The requirement of taking Skill Focus (Perception) for the EH feats is honestly not at all detrimental, since Perception is the best skill in the game.

Final Thought: This is a decent bloodline, and obviously if you’re trying to go Dragon Disciple it’s the ONLY bloodline for you. I wish the low-level powers had a bit more “oomph” to them, but the bonus spells and feats at least partially make up for that. Eldritch Heritage for this bloodline is solid for any frontline fighter, and having to take Skill Focus in Perception is more beneficial than detrimental, unlike some other bloodline skills out there. Linnorm is overall weaker than straight Draconic, so I don’t recommend it.


Debuffing, battlefield control, everything else [Visionary]

Your family probably pops out a lot of Oracles, because you and your kin have a penchant for dreaming visions, which often have some kind of prophetical component. Be ready to put a lot of enemies to sleep, because that’s what this bloodline is all about. Source = APG.

Class Skill: Sense Motive - This skill can be useful for role-playing, and since your Charisma is high you’re probably the party face and will be discussing terms with NPCs and such. This will give you a boost to a skill that you normally would suck at since it’s Wisdom-based, so I’m a fan.

Bonus Spells: sleep (3rd), augury (5th), deep slumber (7th), divination (9th), dream (11th), shadow walk (13th), vision (15th), moment of prescience (17th), astral projection (19th). I’m not a huge fan of divination spells, because they generally leave too much interpretation up to the GM (plus it makes their job harder since they have to come up with information for you to gain from the spell). I do like sleep and deep slumber, but I have to mark them down because of the hit dice restrictions. Augury is way too vague and dream is only useful to give an ally a message, really.

Bonus Feats: This list of feats is a little bit weak, with the only real star being Heighten Spell, and that’s really only because it’s a prerequisite for Preferred Spell, which lets you cast your favorite spell without making its casting time longer.

Arcana: This ability is pretty cool, especially given that you’re probably going to focus on debuffing with this bloodline. If your hideous laughter spell fails, the parson you cast it on might come after you to keep you from hitting him with another spell, and this can give you a little extra defense. If only it lasted more than one round...

[Visionary Arcana]: I am not a huge fan of this arcana, because it really won't come up often, but I did have someone point out to me that in a campaign where the GM enjoys interrupting your rest, this could save your butt, so I'll give it orange.

Bloodline Powers:

Lullaby: This is great, because you’re going to be casting sleep spells a LOT, and forcing a -4 (!!) on will saves is always great. Best of all, the save DCs for this ability go up with level, unlike the normal lullaby spell, so it will still be useful at later levels!

Combat Precognition: Any bonus to your Initiative score is worth having, so I love this ability.

Dreamshaper: Just like a lot of the spells in the bonus spell list, this makes more work for the DM and can lead to all kinds of problems. Not my cup of tea.

[Visions]: This is kind of cool, but again it means the DM needs to do more work and plan out what your character might be able to learn if you use this ability. I don’t like it.

Eye of Somnus: This is a great ability, because you can not only affect a large number of enemies, but the save DC is going to be higher than the spell version AND they can’t wake each other up, unlike normal sleep spells. The only part that isn’t amazing about it is the limit of 10 hit dice or less creatures, so you won’t be affecting the BBEG, sadly. This one is your bread and butter for groups of weaker enemies at higher levels.

Solipsism: This is an incredible power for a debuff-focused caster. You become incorporeal, but you still can affect corporeal creatures with your debuffs with no problem. This is awesome!

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: All of the awesome in this bloodline is in the bloodline powers, which is what you're looking for from the EH feats or VMC sorcerer. I could see a bard or witch taking this to grab lullaby and really sleeping those enemies!

Final Thought: Just looking at the spell and feat lists, I didn’t think I’d like this arcana, but after diving into the bloodline powers more, I’m hooked. The Visionary version, though, is much worse than the standard one. This is a great bloodline for a debuffer build, and should be considered by Witches and Summoners for Eldritch Heritage as well. Don’t forget that there is now an archetype of the Witch for Changeling characters that raises the DC of sleep effects, and there is also an alternate race trait for Elves increasing similar spell DCs (both of these are found in the Advanced Race Guide).


Blasting, battlefield control, everything else

This bloodline is a strange amalgamation of powers, which don't really add up to a single focus, but can create a good jack-of-all-trades sorcerer. Source = OA.

Class Skill: Stealth - This is a very helpful skill, as sneaking around can be useful in many situations. Make sure to have a decent Dex score to take advantage of it.

Bonus Spells: obscuring mist (3rd), ghost whip (5th), ectoplasmic snare (7th), spirit-bound blade (9th), wall of ectoplasm (11th), ethereal jaunt (13th), ectoplasmic eruption (15th), create demiplane (17th), etherealness (19th). The spells on this list are very focused on being able to attack creatures that would normally be difficult to attack for one reason or another. Many of these spells let you attack incorporeal creatures, which makes sense with the ectoplasm theme, and several of them are not normally available to sorcerers, so this is a good list overall.

Bonus Feats: There are some very good feats here... Dodge, Spell Focus, Ectoplasmic Spell... just generally good options. Since you're likely going for blasting here, consider grabbing a couple of the Bloodline Mutations in place of your bonus feats.

Arcana: If you're planning to fight a lot of incorporeal creatures, this is an amazing arcana... but for a general campaign, this one is very lacking.

Bloodline Powers:

Entangling Ectoplasm: Entangling enemies at low levels can be really useful, and it's nice that this can actually affect incorporeal creatures. Overall, good choice.

Ectoplasmic Reach: Getting to do touch attacks with some extra range is pretty cool. The fact that this increases to up to 15 extra feet is really cool.

Ectoplasmic Form: A gaseous form spell with a fly spell added to it is actually extremely useful, but it's painful that this doesn't come until 9th level.

Malevolent Ectoplasm: Free black tentacles that grapple incorporeal creatures? Yes please!

Ectoplasmic Body: Immunity to sneak attacks is nice, but this isn't a really amazing capstone.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: If you plan to fight some incorporeal or ethereal creatures... this is a great way to do so. VMC this one if you are a fighter that wants to be able to kill off some incorporeals.

Final Thought: This bloodline is pretty good, and it's very flavorful. There are lots of reasons that you might want to use ectoplasm, the biggest one being when fighting incorporeal creatures. Overall, a decent option.


Blasting, melee, everything else

This bloodline is all about fire power (literally!). A lot of the abilities here let you blast your enemies until they’re nothing but ash, but you also get a few cool polymorphing abilities and spells too. This is, overall, better than Elemental (fire). Source = UM.

Class Skill: Knoweledge (planes) - This skill comes up a lot, and can be extremely useful to identify an outsider’s elemental or alignment weakness.

Bonus Spells: enlarge person (3rd), scorching ray (5th), fireball (7th), wall of fire (9th), persistent image (11th), planar binding (13th), plane shift(15th), giant form II (17th), wish (19th). This list isn’t as good as the Djinni bloodline, because almost everything is a blast spell, and the issue here is that you don’t get the chance to use your bloodline arcana because they’re all already fire spells! If you have Dazing Spell, then bump each of those blast spells up a rating.

Bonus Feats: This is a decent list of feats, with Dodge, Empower Spell, Improved Initiative, Power Attack, and Weapon Finessse all being very likely useful for your character. Since you're likely going for blasting here, consider grabbing a couple of the Bloodline Mutations in place of your bonus feats.

Arcana: This arcana is cool for when you come across a creature with resistance to any element except fire. Sadly, fire is the most likely resistance that you’ll come across, so this isn’t the best out there.

Bloodline Powers:

Fire Ray: Just like all the other 1st-level ray powers, this one’s lackluster. Drop it for Blood Havoc.

Elemental Resistance: Fire resistance 10 at 3rd level is pretty sweet, and it increases to resistance 20 at 9th level. Usually I’m not a fan of elemental resistance bloodline powers, but most of them are much MUCH weaker than this one.

Efreeti Form: Have you ever wanted to turn into an efreeti? Now you can! This is a fun power, and you’re getting access to giant form I SIX levels earlier than you normally would, so this is great.

Elemental Movement: +30 feet movement means that now you can move almost as fast as a monk of your level, without using any spells. This is an EXCELLENT ability.

Power of the Efreet: Just like the Djinni bloodline, you get access to limited wish without paying the normal cost. That is excellent on its own, but you also get immunity to fire damage AND plane shift once per day. Sweet!

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: Just like its Djinni cousin, there's nothing great or terrible about this one, so it gets a "meh".

Final Thought: This is a decent bloodline, starting off a little bit weak but getting much better as you go up in level. This is one that I would consdier more strongly if I were beginning a campaign at around 10th level. For Eldritch Heritage, you’ll probably look elsewhere only because Fire Ray is weak and you have to go too far up the feat chain to get to the good stuff.


Blasting, melee, everything else [Primal - Blasting, summoning]

If you’ve read the Djinni and Efreeti bloodlines, you’re in for no surprises with this one. You pick an element, and you are essentially the king or queen of that element. The genie-based bloodlines are based very strongly off of this one, so expect a lot of similarities.

Class Skill: Knoweledge (planes) - This skill comes up a lot, and can be extremely useful to identify an outsider’s elemental or alignment weakness. Source = CRB.

Bonus Spells: burning hands* (3rd), scorching ray* (5th), protection from energy (7th), elemental body I (9th), elemental body II (11th), elemental body III (13th),elemental body IV (15th), summon monster VIII (elementals only) (17th), elemental swarm (19th). It’s important to note that burning hands and scorching ray always deal damage based on your chosen element when cast in this way. That sort of begs the question “If I choose burning hands as one of my normal spells known at 1st level, and then I get the electricity-only version of it at 3rd level, do they count as different spells known?” I think the answer to this is yes, personally, and it gives you a level of versatility with your spells that most other sorcerers don’t have, which is why I’m giving both of those spells a green rating instead of my normal orange. The restriction on summon monster VIII really hurts, though.

Bonus Feats: This list... wait, isn’t this EXACTLY the same list of feats available to the Efreeti bloodline? Oh well, it’s a nice list, so don’t complain! Since you're likely going for blasting here, consider grabbing a couple of the Bloodline Mutations in place of your bonus feats.

Arcana: Change spells to deal damage based on your elemental affinity. A decent arcana, but nothing earth-shattering.

[Primal Arcana]: Deal +1 damage per damage dice on spells that are elementally attuned to you. This is an excellent power for blasters, because you’d be surprised how much of a boost to damage 1 per dice really ends up being. If only you could combine this with the Elemental Blast power, then you’d be the absolute KING of your element!

Bloodline Powers:

Elemental Ray: I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: these 1st-level ray abilities just suck! Drop it for Blood Havoc.

Elemental Resistance: You get the same resistance as the genie-based bloodlines, which I’m a fan of.

Elemental Blast: At first this looks like it’s just a slightly weakened version of fireball, keyed to your element, but pay attention to the line that says “Creatures that fail their saves gain vulnerability to your energy type until the end of your next turn.” Throw this at an enemy, and if they fail their save, cast the most powerful blasting spell you have available at them, doubling your damage! This is awesome!

[Elementalist Summoning]: This is a great power for those who want to focus on summoned creatures, because you can throw down a blast spell with your summoned creatures in the radius and they’ll likely come out unscathed thanks to their resistance. Combine this with the extra 1d6 damage they’re doing with every attack, and you’re kicking some serious butt.

Elemenal Movement: This is the only power that is actually different depending on which element you chose. Out of all four choices, the Air one is definitely the best, as a fly speed can get you out of a TON of sticky situations.

Elemental Body: Immunity to an elemental damage type and to critical hits is definitely nice, but the Djinni and Efreeti get limited wish!

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This gives you essentially the same exact powers as the djinni/efreeti/etc bloodlines, and it's no better than them either.

Final Thought: This is a good all-around choice of bloodlines, with solid powers, decent spells and decent feats. If you’re a blaster, this is a great choice for the Elemental Blast, though you’ll wish you could trade away Elemental Ray for something more useful. A blaster Wizard or Magus might consider picking up the Eldritch Heritage line of feats to get Elemental Blast, though it’ll take three feats to get there. Being a half-elf or human makes that a little bit easier to bear.


Battlefield control, debuffing, everything else [Sylvan - Melee (through companion), multiclassing]

If you’ve ever wanted to be sorcerer with a more “natural” feel, like a druid, this is the bloodline for you. Several of the abilities mimic druid spells, and you also get several druid spells as bonus spells added to your list. The true awesomeness of this bloodline comes when you go Wildblooded, though. Source = CRB.

Class Skill: Knowledge (nature) - This skill comes up a LOT at lower levels, when you’re more likely to be fighting animals than aberrations, and sometimes can let you identify poisonous plants and such things too. An all-around good skill to have.

Bonus Spells: entangle (3rd), hideous laughter (5th), deep slumber (7th), poison (9th), tree stride (11th), mislead (13th), phase door (15th), irresistible dance (17th), shapechange (19th). This is a seriously awesome list of spells, and many of them you’d never have access to otherwise. I love hideous laughter and deep slumber as ways to remove an enemy from combat, and tree stride could be just what you need to get out of a tight spot.

Bonus Feats: There’s very little to complain about here. Dodge and Improved Initiative are great, Quicken Spell is excellent, and you might even want Skill Focus (Knowledge (nature)) if you have been making a lot of those checks. All-around, a good list.

Arcana: +2 to compulsions is really excellent for a debuffer-focused Sorcerer. Stack this with Spell Focus and your hideous laughter and deep slumber casts are going to work much more often.

[Sylvan Arcana]: You actually don’t get one. However, I’m making this bright blue, because the power that replaces both the arcana and your level 1 bloodline power is just amazing. Read on.

Bloodline Powers:

Laughing Touch: This isn’t a great power because it requires you to make a melee touch attack (you don’t want to be in melee range, most likely) AND it only works on a given creature once in 24 hours. It’s full of flavor, though, so I can’t give it red.

[Animal Companion]: This is the second best bloodline power in the game (right after Arcane Bond) and that’s only because you need to use a feat to get the full benefit of this one. Essentially, you gain an animal companion as if you were a druid with your level - 3 as your effective druid level. This is very similar to the Ranger’s animal companion class feature EXCEPT that you actually gain the companion at 1st level. This means that you can choose the Boon Companion feat right away, and then you’re getting a full-druid-level companion right from the start. If you’re totally against using a feat for that, you’ll have to wait until you can afford a Cloak of Arcane Heritage. This is an AMAZING feature, because it gives you a pretty hefty tank to stay between you and the bad guys. But wait, it gets better! Because you’re a Sorcerer, you have access to a lot of spells that druids don’t, and one really awesome thing about animal companions is the Share Spells feature. This lets you cast spells on your companion that normally wouldn’t be able to affect its creature type (animal). So, you can cast Enlarge Person on your bear or tiger animal companion, beginning at first level! Trust me, I’m playing one of these right now in PFS, and it’s AWESOME.

Woodland Stride: This is situational but if you’re in the forest it can let you make a speedy getaway, which can be really advantageous for a sorcerer. This is a solid ability, and another one that normally arcane spellcasters wouldn’t be able to touch.

Fleeting Glance: This. This power, seriously. Wow. You get greater invisiblity for a number of rounds per day equal to your level without having to waste your precious spell slots! Turn invisible, drop a pit under your enemies, and then drop a fireball down there, all without them being able to tell where you are. You can also combine this ability with the laughing touch first-level ability to make a much more powerful combination, though it will still work only on any given creature once.

Fey Magic: Spell resistance doesn’t come up much until higher levels, but when it does you’ll be glad you get to re-roll your caster level checks. Another really solid ability.

[Fey Wings]: This isn’t quite as cool as a permanent fly ability like Dragon Wings, but it’s made up for by the fact that you shrink one size category, giving you a higher Dex and higher AC while you’re zipping around in the air. Thanks to this ability, you won’t ever have to cast fly or reduce person on yourself again. Once again, a solid power.

Soul of the Fey: Immunity to poison is nice, and DR 10/cold iron is pretty cool. You’re not going to come up against that many animal type creatures at level 20, so that part is almost useless. Free shadow walk once per day is nice, but you’re casting level 9 spells now so it’s not mind-blowing. This is a decent capstone, but nothing I’d build a character for.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: Oh, if only you could use this options with Sylvan... but even still, this bloodline gives you a good set of powers, and the bonus feats are good, so I would say it's worth taking as a VMC option.

Final Thought: As you can see, the Fey bloodline is a really good one, and Sylvan is even better. If you do go with the Sylvan bloodline, you really need to spend your first feat on Boon Companion, so I suggest staying human for the bonus feat. If you don’t mind losing a single level of spellcasting, you could throw in a level of some other class and not hurt your companion’s spell progression, so this can make for a good multiclass build too. Many of the powers here are mind-affecting, so if you know out of the gate that you’re going to be fighting hordes of undead, steer clear of the Fey bloodline.


Melee, blasting, everything else

The ghoul bloodline gives you several excellent combat-oriented powers, and the bloodline spells match this for the most part as well. The bloodline arcana can keep you alive when you're up near the front line of combat, and the feats are all pretty useful as well. Overall, if you can convince your GM to let you use this bloodline even though it's from the Monster Codex, I'd recommend it as a decent alternative to the Draconic bloodline. Source = Monster Codex.

Class Skill: Stealth - This skill can be one of the most useful in the game, depending strongly on how the scenario plays out. The ability to sneak up on your enemies can make all the difference in some combat situations.

Bonus Spells: ray of enfeeblement (3rd), feast of ashes (5th), vampiric touch (7th), fear (9th), hungry earth (11th), move earth (13th), control undead (15th), unholy aura (17th), wail of the banshee (19th). This is a decent, if a bit eclectic, group of spells. Hungry earth can end an encounter with a bunch of relatively weak foes in one fell swoop, and control undead is always excellent. The list is a bit top-ended for my tastes, though.

Bonus Feats: Everything on this list is excellent, with the exception of Warren Digger, but there are enough amazing feats here that you can leave that one be.

Arcana: You'll want to focus strongly on damage-dealing necromancy spells to make good use of this arcana, and you've got both vampiric touch and wail of the banshee on your list to help out with that.

Bloodline Powers:

Ghoulish Claws: This is an excellent power, as the claws that this power grants cause paralysis which scales with level. These would be amazing to use on a multiclassed magus, or for a magus to use with variant multiclassing.

Leathery Skin: Cold damage is the second most common type of energy damage, and a natural armor bonus is always good as well. This is a decent power, overall.

Ravenous Frenzy: Wow, a haste effect AND a bleed effect for your claws? This is a really great power, and you should want it.

Earth Crawler: This one is pretty excellent, especially in case you get into a lot of trouble in combat and just need to recuperate for a round or two. Burrow town 10 feet and sit there gaining 10 hp per round for a few rounds. Very nice!

Ghoulish Aspect: This is a decent capstone power, but it is made much worse by the stench ability, since there is no mention of being able to turn it off. If you were a team player before this, you pretty much can't be now.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This bloodline gives you the best 1st-level claws of any bloodline, and the other powers are strong as well. If you can convince your GM to let you use this one, it could be worth giving up half your feats for.

Final Thought: I'm a fan of this bloodline for a melee-focused build, as a good alternative to the Draconic or Infernal bloodlines. It takes a big of work to make a Sorcerer melee-capable, so you'll need to be cautious with this one, but if you can pull it off, it's got a great set of abilities!


Battlefield control, divination, debuffing, everything else

The Harrow bloodline lets you harness the power of the harrow to inject some randomness into your spellcasting and boost your divination spells significantly! Source = Harrow Handbook.

Class Skill: Knowledge (history) - This skill isn't terribly important in the day-to-day of the game, so I'm not a huge fan.

Bonus Spells: ill omen (3rd), augury (5th), harrowing (7th), shadow conjuration (9th), contact other plane (11th), legend lore (13th), greater harrowing (15th), moment of prescience (17th), weird (19th). This spell list is very strongly focused on divination spells, which a lot of people would say are not terribly useful normally. However, if you have a GM that is willing to roleplay with you a lot, these spells can give you powerful tools to use against your enemies. Ill omen is a good first-level spell to start out with, and shadow conjuration can give you some really cool effects, though you're not going to be focusing on illusions as much so your DCs aren't going to be crazy high.

Bonus Feats: Craft feats are always going to useful (except in PFS, sadly), and several of these feats make your divination spells even more powerful. Varisian Tattoo is excellent for any spellcaster, so grab that one for sure.

Arcana: Again, more divination boosts to be had here. Essentially, a harrow bloodline sorcerer is going to be the queen of divinations.

Bloodline Powers:

Twisted Fortune: This is a great low-level debuff that causes confusion, usable many times per day, though it's only for one round. Excellent to use on a strong melee bad-guy, or the BBEG if he exists.

See It Coming: Luck bonuses are not easy to come by, and this lets you switch which save the luck bonus is added to, which means if you know you're going to fight ghasts, switch to Fort, or if you know the guy in the next room likes to charm people, switch it to Will! Make sure to take the trait Fate's Favored to make the most use of this you can!

Invoke the Harrow: I like this power because it makes direct use of the harrow cards which this book was based on. You get an enhancement bonus to one of your ability scores, but you don't get to choose which one, so by this level you might already have a +4 headband of Charisma, and if you pull a Charisma card then it's a useless bonus. Still, it's a fun and flavorful ability that could come in very handy if you play your cards right. See what I did there? ;)

Harrowed Home: This is essentially the ability to cast mage's magnificent mansion freely once per day, which is cool but not overly strong as far as a bloodline power goes.

Kin to the Old Tales: Immunity to curses, paralysis and sleep, DR 10/cold iron, and always acting in the surprise round of combat is really excellent. But what I like best of all here is that you can use your Invoke the Harrow ability FREELY, which means you can pull cards until you get the enhancement bonus you want! Really useful!

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: If you want to be a luck-focused character, this would not be a bad option to spend a few feats on. Luck bonuses are hard to come by, and this one gives you some flavorful abilities to boot. I'm sure some perople will be turned off by the randomness of the 9th-level power, but personally I like it.

Final Thought: I like this bloodline overall, though it's really meant for a home game and not for PFS play (which it currently hasn't been sanctioned for). If you like knowing about your enemies ahead of time, this is the bloodline for you!


Battlefield control, crafting, debuffing, everything else

The Impossible bloodline lets you essentially become Neo from the Matrix, allowing you to comprehend things you shouldn't be able to, and perform seemingly impossible feats of magic. Source = Champions of Balance.

Class Skill: Knowledge (engineering) - This skill isn't going to come in handy that often, so I'm not a huge fan.

Bonus Spells: lesser confusion (3rd), make whole (5th), shrink item (7th), confusion (9th), fabricate (11th), animate objects (13th), insanity (15th), polymorph any object (17th), wish (19th). I like this spell list, as it's eclectic and fits the "impossible" theme. There are several spells that inflict confusion on your enemies, so you should probably pick up Spell Focus (enchantment) to make the best use of those. Changing items into other items and making them from scratch can also come in very handy in a bunch of situations. In particular, you may want to follow around a character who gets bonus damage or special abilities from breaking objects (like a fighter with the Disposable Weapon or Quillbreaker Defense feats, or a dwarf with the Dented Helm feat)

Bonus Feats: Craft feats are always going to useful (except in PFS, sadly), and Point-Blank Shot can be useful for any character. If you're playing PFS, this list is probably orange, otherwise it's blue.

Arcana: Wow, this arcana makes constructs susceptible to your enchantment (compulsion) spells as if they weren't mind-afffecting effects. That's HUGE! This will seriously save your butt one day... blue!

Bloodline Powers:

Disorienting Touch: Not a super great power, because it requires a melee touch attack and you’re not going to want to get that close most of the time. Sickened also isn't the strongest debilitating effect to add to an opponent.

Spontaneous Generation: A free craft feat is great, and ignoring a crafting requirement can be very useful. I'll say green, but I'd like to see what PFS will replace this ability with.

Distracting Pattern: This is essentially a free blur spell, but it only works on ranged attacks, and bonuses to Stealth probably aren't going to come up quite that often with a Sorcerer, so this isn't amazing.

Relativity: This is a really cool power and is almost as good as constant flight. I can imagine making a character who stares off into space and just starts walking on walls one day, acting as if it's completely normal.

Living Paradox: Complete immunity to disease, poison, bleed, critical hits and sneak attacks is pretty damn awesome. This is a great power.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This one just doesn't give very strong powers, and having to take Skill Focus (Knowledge[Engineering]) makes the EH feat line not at all worth your time.

Final Thought: This is a fun bloodline that really plays up the weirdness of a Sorcerer. You get the option to create objects, animate them, and eventually just change anything into anything else. The powers are fun, and the arcana is insanely good. Overall, this is a thumbs-up from me.


Battlefield control, debuffing, everything else [Pit-touched - Melee]

As you can probably guess from the name, Infernal bloodline sorcerers have a little bit of hell in them, with demonic influence always trying to bubble to the surface. This can manifest in many ways, but a lot of Infernal sorcerers are charismatic but devious, their ties to an incubus or succubus growing increasingly clear as they become more powerful. Source = CRB.

Class Skill: Diplomacy - No complaints here. Diplomacy is a good skill to have to talk your way out of a situation, and it uses your casting stat. A solid choice.

Bonus Spells: protection from good (3rd), scorching ray (5th), suggestion (7th),charm monster (9th), dominate person (11th), planar binding (devils and creatures with the fiendish template only) (13th), greater teleport (15th), power word stun (17th), meteor swarm (19th). This is a pretty good range of spells, though most players won’t get much use out of their first bloodline spell unless they are playing in an evil party. Starting with suggestion, you’ll get several excellent mind-controlling-type spells which can quickly turn the tide of a battle. Make sure to pick up Spell Focus (enchantment) for those.

Bonus Feats: There aren’t many great feat choices here. Spell Penetration can be useful, and you may want Skill Focus (Knowledge (planes)), but otherwise, not much to be excited about.

Arcana: +2 DC to charm effects is great, just like the +2 to compulsions was for the Fey bloodline.

[Pit-touched Arcana]: Gain an intimidate bonus after you cast a spell? For only 1 round? Not a good arcana, at all.

Bloodline Powers:

Corrupting Touch: Not a super great power, because it requires a melee touch attack and you’re not going to want to get that close most of the time.

Infernal Resistances: This is another of those energy resistance abilities that starts off a little weak and gets only marginally better. Not a fan.

Hellfire: A 10x10 column of untyped damage is cool, but it’s very limited on the number of uses you get per day, and unless you’re in an evil party, you’re probably not going to get a lot of use out of its ability to cause good-aligned creatures to become shaken. This isn’t too great.

[Tough as Hell]: An inherent bonus? To constitution? That increases to +6?? This is AWESOME. Everyone needs more health. Let me also point out that this is one of the best abilities you could ever get from Eldritch Heritage, espectially if you happen to be an arcane caster whose casting stat is constitution... like the Scarred Witch Doctor, perhaps? Sadly, as we talked about earlier, you can’t technically use a Wildblooded bloodline with Eldritch Heritage.

On Dark Wings: A constant flight speed is always good, and in this case you’re not stepping on the toes of one of your bloodline spells. A decent power.

Power of the Pit: Just like most of the other resistance-based capstone powers, this one is fine but not the best.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: These powers are not very exciting, though Diplomacy is useful so going into the EH feat line isn't too much of a tax. This one is another "meh" for me.

Final Thought: Overall, this isn’t a great bloodline, but it’s decent. Tough as Hell is nice, but there are other, better powers out there for melee-based builds. The +2 to charm effects might be good for some casters, too. I wouldn’t recommend this bloodline, but if you like it, go for it.


Buffing, battlefield control, everything else

The maestro bloodline is sort of a strange one. You’ve got the blood of... amazing performers? Or something? You could easily be someone’s muse, and the powers you get from this bloodline match that. Source = UM.

Class Skill: Perform - This would generally be a terrible class skill to gain from your bloodline, but in this case you actually gain a bardic performance ability, and so this will be a very useful skill to have.

Bonus Spells: ventriloquism (3rd), hideous laughter (5th), suggestion (7th), shout (9th), dominate person (11th), mass suggestion (13th), power word blind (15th), greater shout (17th), wail of the banshee (19th). This list is a good mix of control spells, debuffs, and a litle bit of sonic blasting. I like the list, overall.

Bonus Feats: This is a pretty interesting list of feats. Several of them, such as Spellsong and Lingering Performance, let you use your pseudo-bardic performance in better, more powerful ways. Spell Focus and Greater Spell Focus (enhancement) will help you keep those hideous laughter and suggestion spells relevant through the higher levels.

Bloodline Arcana: This arcana gives you a +1 caster level on spells that have only verbal components. Now, it doesn't seem like this would include a lot of spells, but remember that sorcerers get Eschew Materials at level 1. Add to this a rod or several of Still Spell, and you've got pretty much every spell benefiting from this ability!

Bloodline Powers:

Beguiling Voice: This is a great low-level ability. Dazing your enemies for a round can make the difference between taking out that big bad guy or a total party kill. Good stuff.

Fascinate: You gain an ability similar to bardic performance, but only to fascinate. Still, it’s one of those abilities that you’d never have access to as a sorcerer otherwise, so it’s pretty fun.

Perfect Voice: This is a GREAT ability. You get true speech and comprehend languages as constant abilities, AND you get to add +1 to the DCs of your bard-style spells.

Inspire: If this was like the inspire courage bardic ability, it would be much cooler, but instead lets you cast greater heroism a small number of times per day. Still, a free 6th-level spell a few times a day is nothing to laugh at.

Grand Maestro: You can cast all spells as if they were modified by Silent Spell, which isn’t too exciting. You also get immunity to sonic damage AND language-dependent spells, which is a little bit more exciting. As a capstone, this one is alright, but not great.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This one would be very useful for any buff/debuff character who is not a bard, since gaining fascinate is useless for someone who already has it. I could see picking this up as a witch or oracle.

Final Thought: The Maestro bloodline gives you several abilities that you wouldn’t get as anything but a bard normally, and you’re going to be very good at enchantment spells if you use it correctly. Overall, I like this one, and it would be a great to make a troubadour-style sorcerer who is a great party “face” and has some excellent buffing during combat. Taking this one for Eldritch Heritage might actually be really useful for a bard, as the beguiling voice ability could be very useful, and an extra use or two of fascinate couldn’t hurt.


Battlefield control, ranged, everything else

The Marid bloodline is very similar to the other genie-based bloodlines I talked about earlier, like Djinni and Efreeti. Similar to those, the bloodline powers you get here are almost the same as the Elemental bloodline. The difference here is that I’ll be directly comparing it to the Aquatic bloodline, against which this one just doesn’t hold water (BAZINGA!) Source = UM.

Class Skill: Knoweledge (planes) - This skill comes up a lot, and can be extremely useful to identify an outsider’s elemental or alignment weakness.

Bonus Spells: obscuring mist (3rd), see invisibility (5th), gaseous form (7th), wall of ice (9th), persistent image (11th),elemental body III (13th), plane shift (15th), polar ray (17th), wish (19th). This is a good overall mix of spells, with see invisibility and wish being the real winners here. These spells also give you a lot of options for running away from a battle or confusing an enemy into ignoring you, such as gaseous form, persistent image, and plane shift.

Bonus Feats: Dodge and Weapon Finesse are nice feats, but the rest leave much to be desired.

Arcana: Change your energy spells into cold damage. Just like all the others, this doesn’t provide enough versatility to be exciting.

Bloodline Powers:

Frost Ray: Just like all the other elemental ray first-level powers, this one’s a stinker, because it’s not much better than a cantrip. Drop it for Blood Havoc.

Elemental Resistance: Cold resistance 10 at 3rd level is pretty sweet, and it increases to resistance 20 at 9th level. Usually I’m not a fan of elemental resistance bloodline powers, but most of them are much MUCH weaker than this one.

Water’s Fury: The damage is decent, and blinding your enemies for 1d6 rounds can be really great, but you have spells that deal more damage in a larger range than this.

Elemental Movement: Unless you’re in an aquatic campaign, you’re not going to get a lot of use out of this one.

Power of the Marid: Just like the Djinni and Efreeti bloodlines, this power is excellent because you get to cast limited wish without paying the material component cost. Tack on the elemental immunity and free plane shift, and this is a great capstone.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: Just not enough awesome in these bloodline powers to warrant this bloodline as an option, just like all the other elemental bloodlines.

Final Thought: This bloodline is fine, but if you’re going for a water-based character, pick aquatic, and if you’re going for a cold-based character, you might try Boreal. The capstone of this bloodline is really the only reason to choose it over the other two, so unless you’re playing to at least 16th level (and want to spend some serious cash on a Robe of Arcane Heritage), I’d say stay away.


Buffing, everything else

The idea here is that one of your ancestors was killed for their beliefs, and that (somehow) translates into innate arcane power for you. The fluff on this one is a little weak but I’m sure you can make it work. Source = Player Companion: Blood of Angels.

Class Skill: Perform (oratory) - This is probably the least useful skill you could possibly get as a class skill. Only Profession (basketweaver) would be worse, but even then you could sell baskets. Big ‘ol thumbs down!

Bonus Spells: endure elements (3rd), surmount affliction (5th), heroism (7th),blessing of fervor (9th), greater heroism (13th), joyful rapture (15th), mind blank (17th), overwhelming presence (19th). Overall, a cool list of spells. Endure elements is a little lame, and surmount affliction would be really cool if you could cast it on others (how are you supposed to cast this spell to surmount paralysis if you’re PARALYZED?), but then you get heroism, blessing of fervor, greater heroism, and joyful rapture, all of which you would not normally get as a sorcerer and all of which are great buffs/status cures for you and your teammates.

Bonus Feats: The feats presented here are actually really interesting, but have one really big flaw... the good ones have prerequisites that a single-classed Sorcerer can never fulfull! For example, if you chose Heroic Defiance, then once per day you could delay a negative effect on you (such as paralysis) by one round, and that would give you time to cast surmount affliction and have the effect delayed much longer, BUT Heroic Defiance requires Diehard, Endurance, and a +8 base Fortitude save! Heroic Recovery is also great, since you can choose to reroll a saving throw once per day, but at least you can eventually get the required +4 base Fort save for this one. I’ve gotta rate this low because of the insane prereqs, but it really could have been one of the best set of bloodline feats out there... Consider trading several of your bonus feats for Bloodline Mutations instead.

Arcana: Raising your caster level by one is really great, but it’s not cool that you have to take damage to do so. I can imagine someone using their familiar to deal a flat 1 point of nonlethal damage to them every round to keep the caster level up, though, so this might be a fun arcana to have. I’ll give it green because of that. Let me also point that that a multiclass Magus/Sorcerer could make super great use out of this arcana.

Bloodline Powers:

Sacrificial Boon: This is yet another way to help boost your defenses against negative spells and effects... you get to drop a single hit point to gain a +1 bonus to a damage roll, a skill check, or a saving throw. I kinda like it, it’s very flavorful and situationally could be super useful.

Rallying Cry: This is essentially a shorter, weaker version of a bard’s inspire courage, except you only have to spend one round to do it. Again, it’s flavorful and I like it.

Gift of Blood: Give up some hit points in order to give your ally temporary hit points. Does it look like your fighter might be going down in one round, but you’re flying safely above the battle? Give him a few hit points to keep him whacking on the enemy! This bloodline is just full of fun, flavorful powers!

Sacrificial Exchange: This might be one of the best abilities out there for min-maxers. This lets you take some temporary ability damage to one ability score and gain a bonus to another ability score. You never use Intelligence in battle, but you want to have a lot of skill points? Use this to lower your Int in battle. I really like this one a lot.

Eternal Martyr: Immunity to death effects is a really nice ability, and if you do get killed due to hit point damage, your party cleric can ressurrect you for a little cheaper than everyone else. Not being able to be turned into an undead creature will not come up in many games (at all) so it’s not that impressive. Overall though, great capstone.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This one is a great option for a cleric or oracle who has a lot of hit points and would like to buff their allies with spells AND their own health. I would probably consider this one highly for VMC for any buffer/healer character, though EH is tougher since you've got to pick up Skill Focus (Perform[Oratory]) <== BLAH.

Final Thought: On first glance, I thought I was really going to dislike this bloodline, but it’s got some great abilities that would be useful in pretty much any campaign. The increase to caster level when taking damage can definitely be taken advantage of by the right player. The only thing that really isn’t good is the class skill, but that’s trivial overall.


Melee, transmutations, everything else

This bloodline is from People of the Stars, and it's tailored mostly for Androids. It makes use of nanites, which are microscopic machines that help repair broken constructs, and androids naturally have millions of them floating around in their artificial bodies. Source = Player Companion: People of the Stars.

Class Skill: Knowledge (engineering) - This skill normally doesn't come up a lot, but if you're playing in an Iron Gods campaign it will come up a LOT, and this bloodline is pretty much MADE for that campaign, so in that case it's green..

Bonus Spells: disguise self (3rd), defensive shock (5th), gaseous form (7th), miasmatic form (9th), echolocation (11th), fluid form (13th), magnetic field (15th), iron body (17th),shapechange (19th). This list is largely dominated by really excellent transmutation spells that can get you out of a jam fast, like gaseous form and the upgraded versions of it. I also am a huge fan of echolocation as it can help out with those pesky invisible ninjas and such. Overall, a very excellent spell list.

Bonus Feats: There are a few really good feats on here, including Eldritch Heritage (which is just funny... they're just BEGGING you to have a second bloodline!) as well as the incredibly useful Expanded Arcana. THe others are mostly just fine to middling, but overall a decent list of feats.

Arcana: Given that almost all of your bloodline spells are pretty sweet transmutation spells, this arcana will come in very handy. Increasing your transmutation spells' durations by 50% is awesome.

Bloodline Powers:

Nanite Strike: A scaling poison ability at 1st level is pretty excellent, though it only deals 1 Str damage at first. I do really like that you can use it with your melee weapon instead of having to use a touch attack, though. Overall this is better than a lot of 1st-level bloodline abilities, especially when it starts dealing Con damage and making your weapons magical later on.

Nanite Surge: This is great for those make-it-or-break-it moments in the game, and can definitely make the difference between knocking out an enemy or being killed. At higher levels, combine this with your nanite strike to deal a bunch of damage and Con and Strength damage both to a big bad guy.

Nanite Resurgence: WOW. This ability mimics a 5th-level alchemist extract that gives you +4 to both Str and Con, the effects of haste, and heals you for 4d8+level hit points, and can even be activated when you would otherwise be killed. The 1d4 points of damage to Int and Wis seems like a small price to pay, and even the 1d4 Con at the end can be easily healed back. Just be careful not to overuse it, as using it more than once per day can literally kill you on the spot. All in all, though, this is an excellent and super flavorful power!

Distributed Body: Critical hits are one of the main killers of mages at any level, and this is one way to keep your character from biting the big one. Very useful power!

Living Swarm: You get to become a nanite swarm! How cool is that? You're also immune to bleed, disease, and poison, though at 20th level that's not a huge deal. The best part of this, I think, is the at-will gaseous form.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: With the first-level power being such an excellen scaling poison, I could see pretty much any melee character considering this as a VMC candidate, especially a magus, who is always interested in adding as many effects as possible to his weapon damage.

Final Thought: This is an excellent bloodline, and I highly recommend it for an Android or anyone else playing in an Iron Gods or other tech-heavy campaign where it would fit flavor. This bloodline is ALMOST as good as the Arcane bloodline, which is really saying something!


Battlefield control, infiltration, everything else

This bloodline hails from the Blood of the Beast and is honestly really excellent, especially if you're going to be fighting creatures that aren't immune to poison and/or often use poisons themselves. Source = Blood of the Beast.

Class Skill: Knowledge (dungeoneering) - This is a fine skill to have a few ranks in so that you can figure out what kind of death that occasional ooze (or naga) is going to cause you, but nothing exciting.

Bonus Spells: ray of enfeeblement (3rd), invisibility (5th), lightning bolt (7th), poison (9th), dominate person (11th), veil (13th), limited wish (15th), mass charm monster (17th), shapechange (19th). This is an excellent list of spells, with strong options at almost every level. Ray of enfeeblement is a great low-level debuff, invisibility and lightning bolt are excellent for any Sorcerer, and the charm spells are great. Overall, very solid.

Bonus Feats: Improved Initiative is really the only one on here that I would get excited about, so this is a pretty weak feat list.

Arcana: Though many things are immune to poison, getting a +2 to the DCs of saves is pretty nice. This one is solid as long as you're not in an undead- or outsider-heavy campaign.

Bloodline Powers:

Vanishing: Invisibility can keep a caster alive, and that makes this good enough in my book. The fact that you're not going to have to waste casts of your spells on invisibility as often really helps out, as this is counted in rounds, which means at higher levels you can get several discrete invisible combats out of this.

Naga Resistances: You've already got good Will saves, and you shouldn't be letting yourself be exposed to poisons very often, so this one isn't very exciting. Trade it out for Blood Intensity.

Ensnaring Eyes: I like this one because you get several great charm spells on your bloodline spell list, and they can save your bacon in situations where combat hasn't quite started yet.

Cast Without Hands: This doesn't actually give you Still Spell, so it's incredibly situational and a waste of your time. Trade it out for Blood Piercing, no question.

Power of the Naga: Free naga shape III AT WILL is amazing... if you take the form of a Lunar Naga, you can have sneak attack +3d6 for no extra cost! Now, you might be thinking "but Cartmanbeck, you told me not to take Cast Without Hands, but when I take Naga shape I can't cast my spells!" and you're right... if you plan to use the naga form a lot, it might be worth keeping Cast Without Hands... or you could just take the Still Spell feat and do things that way. Even if you aren't going to make use of the naga shape part of this capstone, however, you still get IMMUNITY to charm, mind-reading, and poison, which is really nice. This is one of the better bloodline capstones out there.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: VMC for this one will give you the invisibility power, which is nice, and Ensnaring Eyes would be great for a Bard, Mesmerist or other charmer. Good options overall.

Final Thought: I absolutely love this bloodline, especially the capstone. The only negative thing it has going for it is a weak bonus feat list, though the arcana will be entirely useless in an undead-heavy campaign. My overall assesment is that I would take this bloodline over many of the others out there.


Melee, battlefield control, infiltration, everything else

This bloodline comes from the Dragon Empires Primer, and it’s pretty strongly tailored toward Eastern-themed characters. If it makes sense in your campaign, this one might be a great choice, because the spells and abilities are pretty excellent. Source = Dragon Empires Primer.

Class Skill: Intimidate - Not the best skill a Sorcerer could ask for, but it uses your casting stat and can be situationally useful.

Bonus Spells: ray of enfeeblement (3rd), invisibility (5th), fly (7th), charm monster (9th), cone of cold (11th), greater dispel magic (13th), waves of exhaustion (15th), trap the soul (17th), dominate monster (19th). This list includes a nice variety of spells,a nd several of them are ones that no Sorcerer should be without. Ray of enfeeblement is a great low-level debuff, invisibility and fly are pretty much no-brainers for any Sorcerer, the charm spells are great, and trap the soul can permanently trap a creature with NO SAVE. This is one of the best bloodline spell lists out there.

Bonus Feats: There are some nice ones on here, including my favorite, Improved Initiative. Iron Will can help you dump your Wisdom score without failing every Will save, and if you cast some type of polymorph spell on yourself you could make good use of Enforcer and Skill Focus (Intimidate).

Arcana: This one’s very situational, but if you happen to cast a charm spell and then need to make some type of Diplomacy check to tell the subject to do something, this could come in handy.

Bloodline Powers:

Touch of Agony: I actually like this ability, because it seems from the description that you might be able to stack uses of it on subsequent rounds. Even if you can’t, it could be very useful for a melee-focused character. If you’re trying to stay out of melee, steer clear.

Altered Form: Free change shape for minutes per day is useful, but if you’re playing until level 17, you’re going to get to use it at will, which is AWESOME. I love this ability.

Windborne: Gaseous form isn’t the best spell for a Sorcerer because you can’t keep casting spells, but the increase to your speed at higher levels can be a serious lifesaver.

Oni Healing: Regeneration is always great, it would just be nice if it went into effect before you hit 0 or less hit points. Still, this can literally save your life, so it gets at least a green rating.

Hedonistic Master: Free giant form I is nice (though it would be better if it had been giant form II instead), but you’re restricted to one specific giant form, so it’s not nearly as versatile as the spell. The spell resistance is nice too, but overall this is not a super great capstone.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: I could see a rogue or other infiltrator character picking this up as a VMC option for the altered form power, and touch of agony could come in handy as well. Overall, I like this one.

Final Thought: This bloodline is a fun, extremely flavorful one. If you’ve ever wanted to be a giant, this is a great way to do it. The Altered Form ability would be really useful for infiltrating, well, anywhere. Just for that ability alone, it might be worth an Eldritch Heritage for a rogue or ninja, and Windborne would then just be an added bonus.


Melee, blasting, everything else

The Orc bloodline is all about savagery and carnage, when it comes right down to it. It’s an obvious choice for a melee-centric caster, but it’s also a great way to get bonus damage on your spells, as you’ll see soon. Source = Orcs of Golarion.

Class Skill: Survival - This is a skill that every adventurer will need to roll at some point, so it’s a great class skill to pick up.

Bonus Spells: burning hands (3rd), bull’s strength (5th), rage (7th), wall of fire (9th), cloudkill (11th), transformation (13th), delayed blast fireball (15th), iron body (17th), meteor swarm (19th). This spell list is decent, with bull’s strength and iron body probably being the most-used spells on the list. I’m rating rage and transformation both low because they preclude you from casting any more spells, but if you’re trying to go for a true melee caster, you’ll be buffing yourself for a few rounds then casting one of these and charging in. If that’s the case, they’re blue.

Bonus Feats: These are exactly what you’d expect from an orc: Endurance, Diehard, Toughness, Power Attack, Intimidating Prowess, etc. These are pretty melee-focused, so again if you’re going melee they turn blue.

Arcana: Now, this is interesting. You gain the orc subtype, so that’s cool. You get darkvision, which is excellent, but you also get light sensitivity, which sucks. However, the best part of this arcana is you get to add +1 damage per dice to ANY damaging spell. If you want to get the most damage out of your spells and be the best blaster you can be, go Crossblooded and pair this with the Draconic bloodline and you get +2 damage PER DAMAGE DICE. That will usually come out to close to double the damage you would normally be rolling. VERY NICE.

Bloodline Powers:

Touch of Rage: Give a morale bonus to one of your allies with a touch. Cool power, could be useful in a pinch. Notice that it doesn’t say that you can’t use it on yourself, and it adds to damage rolls, so here’s another way to get a little more spell damage on top of what you’re already getting, but only if you can then cast your damaging spell as a Swift action. Since this is a morale bonus, you may want to consider picking up the Optimistic Gambler campaign trait from Second Darkness to make it even more useful. You can also boost the bonus you’re getting from this ability at higher levels by carrying a Courageous weapon! Once you hit 10th level, if your GM is feeling extra generous, he/she may allow you to take Quicken Spell-Like Ability (a Monster feat) to use this power as a swift action three times per day, though that feat does say that you can only choose a spell-like ability that duplicates a spell, and this one technically does not.

Fearless: This is nice, because not only do you gain several useful abilities (a bonus against feat AND a natural armor bonus) but you also lose that pesky light sensitivity you had earlier. A very nice power.

Strength of the Beast: This is probably why you went with Orc. You wanna be STRONG! A total of +6 inherent bonus to Strength is really great, so use it well, you melee machine!

Power of Giants: Wowza! First you’re getting inherent Strength bonuses, now you’re getting enlarge powers that give you a better size bonus to Strength than enlarge person normally does! An additional +6 size bonus to Strength is just awesome. Being able to use it essentially as many times per day as you want (in one-minute increments) is really REALLY nice too, because it means you don’t ever have to use a spell slot on enlarge person again!

Warlord Reborn: This one is a relatively weak capstone, honestly. DR 5/- can be outshined by a low-level spell slot, and transformation is not a high enough spell level to be a huge deal at only once per day.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This one is an excellent option for many melee combatants that don't normally have access to rage. Also note that this bonus actually stacks with all types of rage, so you could easily get yourself a bit more damage that way as well, but unfortunately since it takes a Standard action it's not worth using on yourself. Since Strength of the Beast comes in so late, I would say this one would be most useful for a warpriest or other type of buffing character that can also handle being on the front lines, and boosting attack and damage of your two-handed greatsword-wielding melee fighter.

Final Thought: This bloodline is the king of melee bloodlines, and you could crossblood it with Infernal to get huge boosts to Strength AND Constitution. It precludes you from taking the Dragon Disciple PrC, though, which hurts a little bit. All-in-all, this is a nice bloodline. For Eldritch Heritage, this one would definitely be worth it for any front-line fighter, and it would be especially great for a melee Ranger since Skill Focus (Survival) is required.


Melee, battlefield control, everything else

This bloodline is all about hurting nature and causing destruction of natural things. It’s a pretty evil-sounding bloodline, but give it a deeper look and you might see the advantage to dealing with vermin as if they were animals. Honestly, this bloodline is probably best for the big bad evil guy in your campaign, but check it out anyway, because some of these abilities are really excellent. Source = Pathfinder 29: Mother of Flies.

Class Skill: Heal - This isn’t a great skill for a Sorcerer, obviously. It might be useful for treating the plagues that you accidentally cause your allies to catch.

Bonus Spells: charm animal (3rd), summon swarm (5th), contagion (7th), repel vermin (9th), insect plague (11th), eyebite (13th), creeping doom (15th), horrid wilting (17th), power word kill (19th). This set of spells is pretty sweet. It gets better when you realize that the arcana that comes with it lets you treat vermin as animals. You also get some really great summoning spells that will deal automatic damage to your enemies, since they’re swarms. Overall, this is sweet.

Bonus Feats: Not a great group of feats. Toughness is really the only super useful one.

Arcana: Vermin are treated as animals for your spells. This means you can cast charm animal  on that giant spider that was going to kill you, and tell it to knit you a sweater. It really is a decent ability, though obviously situational.

Bloodline Powers:

Plague’s Caress: This is just narsty. Seriously. You touch someone, and they break out in smelly, disgusting pustules, and they’re sickened for several rounds, no save. That’s actually a decent ability, but it’ll make your allies hate you, most likely.

Accustomed to Awfulness: Immunity to any conditions are really excellent. Sickened is one of the weakest negative conditions, but it’s still great to be immune to it, and later on you get immunity to the nauseated condition, so this one keeps getting better. The +4 on saving throws vs. disease is nice too.

Shroud of Vermin: You can walk through swarms without taking damage. Not only that, the swarms like you enough to do what you tell them AND give you a natural armor bonus! Seriously, as disgusting as it it, this is a sweet power.

Pestilential Breath: You get a disgusting, disease-ridden breath weapon, and it’s AWESOME. You can give an enemy two diseases at once, and this is pretty sweet.

Plague Barrier: Inflict mummy rot with a touch OR with a melee weapon. As a capstone, this one is pretty terrible.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This bloodline is practically BEGGING to be taken by a plague-druid or antipaladin, but otherwise it's just a bit too disgusting and vile for many player characters.

Final Thought: Overall, I really like this bloodline, because of the Shroud of Vermin ability mostly, but it really seems to be meant for an evil character, and so most players aren’t going to get the chance to run it. You could try passing it off with your DM as a sort of Pigpen-style accidental thing, where you’re just the really smelly guy and you’re not trying to be evil, but it’ll probably be a tough sell. Eldritch Heritage for this one is also a little tough... you could use it on a melee character to sicken your enemies, but your allies will still probably be disgusted by you. Have fun!


Battlefield control, debuffing, skill use, everything else

Wow, I love the flavor of this bloodline. Either you or someone in your lineage was possessed, and you still have some of that spirit stuck in your soul. You can give over bits of control to this spirit to gain abilities that others might not possess. This bloodline gives you access to a bunch of spells that you might not get otherwise, as well. Source = Haunted Heroes Handbook.

Class Skill: Knowledge (religion) - This is a great skill for anyone because of the plethora of undead that are out there.

Bonus Spells: anticipate peril (3rd), share memory (5th), purge spirit (7th), entrap spirit (9th), possession (11th), telepathy (13th), insanity (15th), bilocation (17th), divide mind (19th). I like this group of spells overall. Anticipate peril is great to cast right before your Barbarian busts open that door in the dungeon, and purge spirit is a spell that affects incorporeal creatures at full strength but still deals d6 damage per level, which is hard to find. The list is a little bit too focused on dealing with incorporeal creatures, but in a ghost-heavy adventure that could be perfect. I love insanity, as causing permanent confusion is pretty great. Divide mind is also pretty excellent, since if you have a way to cast something purely mental, you are effectively getting an extra spell per level.

Bonus Feats: Wow, these feats are really great! Fearsome Spell is a great debuff option, Selective Spell is almost necessary for combat-type casters, Spell Focus is always solid, and Traumatic Spell is just plain fun.

Arcana: You get to roll twice on your Will saves against mind-affecting stuff, as long as you've cast a spell recently. Which you will have done, because you're a Sorcerer. And even if you forgot to, after you've been affected by a mind-affecting effect, you can use htis to roll again! This is absolutely amazing!

Bloodline Powers:

Aggressive Possession: Confusion is pretty debilitating, so this is pretty good, but it does require a touch attack, which isn't ideal.

Sight Unseen: Darkvision is nice for a human or something like that, but the real excitement here is the lifesense 30 at 9th level. This lets you effectively ignore invisibility at all times, which is fantastic!

Inside Agent: Congratulations, you just earned the ability to roll twice on any skill check. Seriously... WOW. This will come in incredibly handy, even though you can't use it if you already used it in the last 10 minutes. This one is blue bordering on bright-blue.

One Body, Two Minds: Free Silent and Still spell, and also free Extend Spell if the spell is mind-affecting. If this could be used more than once per day, I'd go bright blue for sure, but still this is really nice.

Dual Spirit: Immunity to mind-affecting effects is great, but LOOK AT THAT SECOND POWER! If you use a possession effect, you get to stay in control of your own body, effectively giving you DOUBLE your normal actions in a round! Add divide mind to this and one could argue that you could cast four spells per round... wow.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This bloodline's best powers are at the higher levels, so I would say it's only a mediocre choice for dipping into with EH/VMC.

Final Thought: This bloodline is fantastic if you know you're going to be going up against any ghosties, but even if not you get some really great, unique powers. That capstone is just incredible, and several of the other powers are great as well. Add in a solid bonus spell list and Bonus Feats list, and I give this one a big thumbs-up!


Battlefield control, transformations, everything else [Anarchic]

You’ve got chaos oozing from your pores. Your chaos is so chaotic that it screws up its OWN plan! You get the idea. Chaos. Source = CRB.

Class Skill: Knowledge (planes) - This skill comes up pretty often, so it’s a decent one to have. No complaints here.

Bonus Spells: entropic shield (3rd), blur (5th), gaseous form (7th), confusion (9th), major creation (11th), disintegrate (13th), greater polymorph (15th), polymorph any object (17th), shapechange (19th). This list of spells is all about turning yourself into fun things. The lower level spells aren’t as exciting as the really high level ones, but it’s a pretty good list overall.

Bonus Feats: This list of feats is great if your character has a decent Dexterity score, with Agile Maneuvers and Defensive Combat Training, but otherwise the only good one left is Toughness.

Arcana: This is actually a really nice arcana, but it is very situational, since it only helps with dispelling. If you plan to cast a lot of long-term spells, this might be really useful, otherwise, it’s orange.

[Anarchic Arcana]: This one is extremely strange, and kinda useless since it’s a random cantrip. Fail!

Bloodline Powers:

Protoplasm: Free tanglefoot bags at level 1 is really excellent. The fact that it deals some acid damage also is just a bonus. I like it.

Protean Resistances: Resist acid 5 is decent, but nothing exciting. A +2 bonus to saves against a few types of spells is also decent, but ALSO nothing exciting. Even when they go up to acid resist 10 and a +4 bonus, it’s just okay.

[WIld Feedback]: This is another relatively useless ability, only helpful when you’re trying to dispel other people’s spells. If you’re planning to dispel some stuff, cool, but then again you already gave up the Arcana that would help you with that.

Reality Wrinkle: Solid fog would normally be not-so-great for you, but your movement isn’t impeded by the fog, so it’s actually pretty good. As it is, it can be useful.

Spatial Tear: Ok, a teleport spell that leaves a black tentacles behind it is both really flavorful and pretty powerful. This one’s sweet.

Avatar of Chaos: You become immune to acid, petrification, and polymorph effects. The only issue here is, suddenly no one else in the party can cast polymorph effects on you... yeah I’m not a fan of this one at all.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This one is great at early levels, since the protoplasm ability can make or break an encounter at lower levels. Reality wrinkle is cool as well, so I'd say this one is a definite contender for most battlefield controller builds.

Final Thought: This bloodline is decent overall, and it’s got some fun abilities, especially the first-level one. I probably wouldn’t recommend this one above too many of the others, but it’s not a bad bloodline. Protoplasm could be a great ability to gain through Eldritch Heritage.


Blasting, debuffing, everything else

You're the closest thing that one can come to the Psychic class without ACTUALLY having that class. You cast psychic spells, and you get a bunch of really nice ones in your bonus spell list. You're also the only class other than the Psychic that can use undercasting, which almost all your bonus spells allow for. Pretty cool stuff! Source = OA.

Class Skill: Sense Motive - This is a useful skill to have, especially since you're going to have an excellent Charisma bonus, so you can just destroy social interactions.

Bonus Spells: mind thrust I (3rd), id insinuation I (5th), ego whip I (7th), intellect fortress I (9th), psychic crush I (11th), mental barrier V (13th), tower of iron will III (15th), bilocation (17th), microcosm (19th). It's really hard to rate many of these spells, because they get better as you get higher level. I've tried to give each of the lower ones two ratings... one before you get your 9th level power (first), and one after (second). In any case, there are some real winners here, but remember that you don't have any way to affect creatures that are immune to mind-affecting effects, so that can be a serious issue. I'd like to give a special mention of mental barrier V and tower of iron will III here... they're not very good, unless you're fighting against others using psychic spells... then they're pretty awesome.

Bonus Feats: There are some really good feats on this list, though it always pains me to remember that adding metamagic to a sorcerer's spells increases their casting time. Oh well, Quicken Spell and Spell Focus are here, those are enough on their own to give this a blue rating.

Arcana: This might be one of the most significant bloodline arcana, because it lets you cast all your spells as psychic spells, which means you can ignore arcane spell failure chance! Now, it also means if you're under the effect of any emotion-based effects, you have to make concentration checks, which hurts a bit, but being able to cast 9th-level spells in full plate armor without wasting any feats on it is pretty amazing.

Bloodline Powers:

Psychic Strike: This is a decent damage-dealing bloodline power, and it doesn't say that it's a mind-affecting effect, so you could theoretically use it against undead or golems (expect table variation).

Mental Resistance: Unfortunately, this is just a weaker version of the Iron Will feat, so I'm not a big fan. Why don't you trade it for Blood Intensity and just be super happy instead?

Undercasting Prodigy: This power is amazing. You're getting free spell upgrades at every level when you gain new spell levels to cast, which is awesome. And of course, you can keep casting the lower levels of these spells using the undercasting mechanic. Seriously, this is incredible!

Thoughtsense: OIt's pretty useful to be able to hear what everyone around you is thinking, but this isn't the most powerful ability out there, especially for a 15th-level power.

True Thought-Form: I can definitely see this one's usefulness, but how often do you actually die as a 20th-level character? This should NEVER come up, and if it did, you're playing your all-powerful 20th-level sorcerer completely wrong.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: Gaining a bunch of undercast-able spells is nice, but you're waiting a long time to get that 9th-level power that will let you cast them at higher levels. Worse, they're arcane spells for you, so you can't cast them in armor. This is not the best option for dipping.

Final Thought: I really love this bloodline, and you should too. There's really nothing bad about it, other than the emotional-effect dependency, and that's easy to get past. It's also important to note that since you're casting psychic spells, you have no need for the free bonus feat Eschew Materials... so take an archetype that replaces it! the Seeker archetype is a good option... you don't want to take Tattooed Sorcerer because you'd be giving up one of the best powers, the 9th level undercasting prodigy ability. Basically, you should choose this one!


Battlefield control, infiltration, everything else

This bloodline isn’t like the other outsider-based ones we’ve come across before. The Rakshasa bloodline is all about deceit and guile, letting you charm people into believing that you’re harmless, or dominating them and using them as your minions. You’re going to get very good at disguising yourself as others and infiltrating secret bases, things like that. Source = UM.

Class Skill: Disguise - This one is a little strange for a standard Sorcerer, but with this bloodline, you’re going to become really good at charming your way through situations which you’d normally need to fight your way out of, so this skill will actually come in really handy.

Bonus Spells: charm person (3rd), invisibility (5th), suggestion (7th), detect scrying (9th), prying eyes (11th), mass suggestion (13th), greater polymorph (15th), mind blank (17th), dominate monster (19th). This is a great list of spells for a controller/infiltrator style of character, which is what you’re obviously trying to play if you’ve chosen this bloodline. You get charm and invisibility early on, and suggestion and mass suggestion later. Prying eyes is one of the best scouting spells ever, so that’s always cool too.

Arcana: This ability is just way too situational to really be useful, even for an infiltrator. I suppose if you’re playing the Razmiran Priest archetype this might be worth your time, otherwise it’s mostly worthless.

Bloodline Powers:

Silver Tongue: You can lie through your teeth, and nine times out of ten everyone in the room will believe you. This is an almost necessary ability for an infiltrator.

Mind Reader: This ability is actually better than almost all of the mind reading-type spells out there. It essentially lets you use a single standard action to get the effect of three rounds of concentration on detect thoughts. Seriously, an awesome ability for an infiltrator.

Hide Aura: Combine this with an invisibility spell and you’ll pretty much never be found by anyone. What an excellent ability, and you get to use it at will!

Alter Self: Alter self at will is an extremely useful ability for you, so make good use of it.

Outsider: This one’s full of RP potential and flavor, so I like it. You get to essentially become a Rakshasa, but you can still be resurrected, so that’s a big plus. You also gain DR 10/piercing, which is kind of weird for a high-level damage reduction. Either way, it’s pretty cool.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This bloodline could come in extremely useful for any type of infiltrator bard or inquisitor, or even the brand-spanking-new Vigilante playtest. Mind reader is one of the best ways to get thoughts out of someone's mind in the game, and hide aura could come in handy for an infiltrator cleric or warpriest as well.

Final Thought: This bloodline is very specifically meant for someone who will be infiltrating enemy bases, sneaking around hideouts, and stuff like that. Despite that, the bonus spells you gain could still be pretty useful for a general battlefield controller-type character. Sadly, the arcana is weak, so I see this as more likely an Eldritch Heritage choice for a Rogue or Bard character.


Melee, infiltration, battlefield control, everything else [Envenomed - everything]

You likely had a Naga or other serpent-kin in your family history, and it’s given you a slithery, scaly charm that helps you convince others to do your bidding. This one is actually pretty similar to the Rakshasa bloodline I just reviewed, but has a little bit more combat focus in the powers. Source = APG.

Class Skill: Diplomacy - This is a decent skill for any Sorcerer, but especially an infiltrator-type. It’s not quite as good as Disguise, but you get to add your Charisma bonus to it also, so it’ll help you out.

Bonus Spells: hypnotism (3rd), delay poison (5th), summon monster III (reptiles only) (7th), poison (9th), hold monster (11th), mass suggestion (13th), summon monster VII (reptiles only) (15th), irresistible dance (17th), dominate monster (19th). This is another decent set of spells, starting with hypnotism which can effectively remove a creature from battle long enough to take out its allies. The summon monster spells would be ranked better if they weren’t specifically only for reptiles.

Bonus Feats: A really great group of feats! Combat Casting is always helpful, Decietful, Persuasive and Stealthy are all feats that will boost skills that you’ll likely be using a lot, and Combat Reflexes makes sense with the flavor of being serpent-kin. I like this list.

Arcana: Affect THREE creature types with your spells that normally only work on humanoids! WOW. Seriously, that’s an awesome ability. For a battlefield controller build, this might even be sky blue.

[Envenomed Arcana]: Skill boosts are not what you’re hoping to see from a bloodline arcana, even if they are relatively useful ones. This one’s a serious stinker.

Bloodline Powers:

Serpent’s Fang: A bite attack is decent, and a bite attack that inflicts poison that increases its DC by level is great. As you level, this bite just gets better and better, overcoming DR and dealing more Con damage, and eventually requiring two saving throws to cure. Even though you have to bite someone in melee, this is just too good to pass up.

Serpentfriend: You gain a familiar! Very nice. You’ll get a +3 bonus on Bluff checks, but this opens you up for Improved Familiar later which is a great option. A faerie dragon or pseudodragon is reptilian-ish, so I’m sure no one would complain if you improved to that.

[Envenom]: A decent ability, letting you poison someone a few more times than you would be able to otherwise. However, the arcana is so boring and terrible that I’d never recommend it.

Snakeskin: This is decent, since a natural armor bonus is always helpful. The escape artist bonus is also helpful.

Den of Vipers: This is a great ability, but I think the writers made a slight mistake in not specifying that you, the caster, should be immune to the poison and damage of the swarm. Sill, you don’t get entangled by it, so you can easily step through the swarm and make sure to direct it away from you.

Scaled Soul: You can now turn into a snake of any size, a Kobold or a Serpentfolk, which is cool, though a few more options would have been nice. You can still cast spells when you turn into a snake, which is a huge bonus over normal beast shape spells. You also become immune to poison and paralysis, AND you can use your snake bite at will now. This is a really great capstone, probably one of the best, since it involves so many different, flavorful abilities.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This one is a really excellent option for a barbarian, alchemist, or any other natural attack combatant. It's hard to find poison with a DC that scales with level, and a familiar can come in handy for anyone. This is probably one of the best sorcerer VMC options out there.

Final Thought: I really like the Serpentine bloodline. I could see a Kobold, Nagaji, or Vishkanya character really enjoying the benefits of these abilities, although they’d be nice for a Sorcerer of any race. As I said earlier, seriously, stay away from the Envenomed WIldblooded version, that arcana is useless. As far as Eldritch Heritage, pretty much any melee character could find a use for the first-level bite attack you get, and Serpentfriend could give a Rogue or Ninja a nice little snake companion to scope out tight places, or you could find a benefit in Snakeskin if you’re willing to go that far up the feat chain. This one’s a keeper.


Battlefield control, infiltration, versatility [Umbral]

You’ve got something dark and shadowy in your ancestry, letting you sneak around unseen and blend into the shadows more easily than others. This is a natural choice for Sorcerers of the Wayang race, but it could be great for anyone who wants to be sneaky. Source = CRB.

Class Skill: Stealth - This one’s a no-brainer based on the fluff, and it’ll be very useful to you as you gain your sweet bloodline powers.

Bonus Spells: ray of enfeeblement (3rd), darkvision (5th), deeper darkness (7th), shadow conjuration (9th), shadow evocation (11th), shadow walk (13th), power word blind (15th), greater shadow evocation (17th), shades (19th). This is probably one of the best spell lists out there, as long as you keep your spell DCs for illusions high enough. You’re essentially dealing with a whole bunch of spells that can mimic any other spell of a certain level or lower, and that spell will have its full effect as long as the target fails a will save. You’re getting a huge amount of versatility out of just a few known spells, but you have to make sure that the targets are going to believe them. I highly recommend taking Spell Focus and Improved Spell Focus (Illusion) if you pick this bloodline. Note that there are a few races that give bonuses to spell DCs of Illusion spells, and specifically Wayangs have a favored class option for the Sorcerer class that gives you a huge boost to spell DCs with Illusion spells of the Shadow subschool. In other words: Wayang Shadow Sorcerers RULE!

Bonus Feats: Not too many really great ones here, though Silent Spell, Skill Focus (Stealth) and Stealthy could all be useful for you.

Arcana: Get a bonus on Stealth checks when you cast a darkness or shadow spell, for 1d4 rounds. This could come in very handy, especially given the bloodline powers you’ll get, so I like this one.

[Umbral Arcana]: This one is slightly better than the regular Shadow bloodline arcana, because you get to raise your effective caster level by 1 anytime you’re in dim light or darker, and let’s be honest, you’re going to be in darkness a LOT with this bloodline. I like it.

Bloodline Powers:

Shadowstrike: If this ability didn’t have to be a melee touch attack, I’d really like it, but you’re better off with magic missile or something else from range.

[Cloak of Shadows]: An extra boost to your (or an ally’s) Stealth checks when in dim light or darkness? Yes, please! This one’s awesome.

Nighteye: You get darkvision, and if you already had it, it gets a better range. Normally darkvision wouldn’t be a really great 3rd-level bloodline power, but with all the other abilities you have hinging on you being able to be in darkness, you’re really going to want this one.

Shadow Well: The only other way to get Hide in Plain Sight at this low of a level is to spend a bunch of feats and take the Shadowdancer PrC. And this version is actually BETTER than the normal Hide in Plain Sight ability, because you can also choose to trade places with an ally! This is a seriously amazing ability, in fact I might even say it’s overpowered. You want this. Badly.

Enveloping Darkness: Deeper darkness that you can see through with absolutely no penalty. AND it entangles everyone else. This is golden.

Shadow Master: You can see in any level of natural or magical darkness, and when you use your shadow conjuration spells, those spells are 20% more real than normal AND get the benefit of Augment Summoning if they qualify. Again, you seriously want this ability.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: Unfortunately, there are better ways for rogues and other melee combatants to get hide in plain sight, and the shadowstrike ability is fairly weak so this one isn't the best candidate.

Final Thought: This is honestly one of the very best bloodlines out there, and it’s made even better by the Advanced Race Guide and the Wayang favored class bonus. The regular and Wildblooded versions of this bloodline are almost the same, though I do favor Umbral just a bit becuase of the superior 1st-level power. Eldritch Heritage this one for your Rogue, Ninja, or Ranger, because everyone could use Shadow Well, and the prerequisites for it are less steep than the Shadowdancer PrC. Overall, this is a seriously awesome bloodline that everyone should try out.


Battlefield control, everything else

This is another one of the genie-themed bloodlines, and it’s pretty similar to the others, so if you liked those but really wanted something earth-themed, this one’s for you. Source = UM.

Class Skill: Knowledge (planes) - As before, this is a decent skill to have, as it will come up relatively often and give you important information about planar beings’ elemental immunities and weaknesses.

Bonus Spells: true strike (3rd), glitterdust (5th), greater magic weapon (7th), stoneskin (9th), wall of stone (11th), wall of iron (13th), plane shift (15th), iron body (17th), wish (19th). A pretty decent list of spells, here. Glitterdust is one of the best spells for low-level casters, and things like stoneskin and iron body will keep you alive even if you get pummeled a little bit.

Bonus Feats: Dodge, Improved Initiative, and Weapon Finesse are all good feats, so this list is decent, if not great.

Arcana: Same as the others, you can change your energy-damage spells to acid. Still isn’t that impressive.

Bloodline Powers:

Acid Ray: Not much better than your 0-level Acid Splash. Thumbs down. Drop it for Blood Havoc.

Elemental Resistance: Resistance 10 to acid is nice, and upping it to 20 at 9th level is awesome. No complaints here.

Avalanche: This one is actually really cool. If you cast a single-target spell (such as a ray), you can perform a bull rush maneuver on that target, even from range. This can be great for positioning your enemies so that your allies can get flanking, or even trying to push an enemy into a hole or pit. Very nice.

Elemental Movement: A burrow speed isn’t quite as good as a fly speed, but it’s still kinda cool.

Power of the Shaitan: Same as the other genie bloodlines, you get to start granting limited wishes, which means you don’t have to pay the component cost usually associated. Very nice.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: Like all the other elemental-style bloodlines, this one just isn't very good. There are much better ways to get elemental damage than spending a bunch of feats on this.

Final Thought: This one is very similar to the other genie-based bloodlines, and none of them are really any better or worse than any of the others. Eldritch Heritage this one for a divine caster who wants to be able to push their enemies around with single-target spells (you could cast inflict light wounds and get a free bull rush after delivering it, pretty cool!)


Mekee, infiltration, everything else

This is a bloodline based on having shapechanging ancestors of some kind, likely from a fey creature in your distant family tree. If you like changing shapes, this is for you. Source = Legacy of the First World.

Class Skill: Disguise - This is a great skill to gain, and it works well with your shapechanging babilities, so I like it overall.

Bonus Spells: disguise self (3rd), alter self (5th), fly (7th), beast shape II (9th), polymorph (11th), transformation (13th), greater polymorph (15th), frightful aspect (17th), shapechange (19th). This is a really excellent set of spells if you're planning to transform into creatures.... and if you weren't planning to do that, go pick another bloodline!

Bonus Feats: This is a really excellent set of bonus feats, including Dodge, Combat Casting (which you'll need if you're going to go into melee), Improved Initiate, and Toughness.

Arcana: You get to have your transmutation spells boosted by 1 caster level, which isn't terribly exciting.

Bloodline Powers:

Hardened Fists: This isn't actually a terrible first power, and I like it a bit better than the standard set of claws that characters usually get. The downside to this is that claws would give you two attacks per round, as opposed to a single one from unarmed strikes. If you don't plan to go melee in your own form, you could swap this for Blood Havoc.

Mutable Flesh: This power lets you significantly increase the length of time your transmutation spells last, with minutes/level spells becoming 10 minutes/level, and 10 minutes/level spells becoming hour/level. I'm cool with this since you're going to be casting these spells a lot, but as a standalone it's not one of the best powers out there.

Vortex of Flesh: This is really, really strange. You can turn into "an amalgam of erratic geometric shapes" once per day, which deals a bunch of physical damage in a 20-foot radius. It's only considered magical if your normal natural attacks are considered magical, same thing for any other kinds of DR-bypassing. You can use it twice per day at 17th level and 3x per day at 20th level. This is... just too weird and seems to niche. Trade it out for Blood Piercing.

Superior Transformation: This is a really nice power, giving you immunity to polymorph effects unless you are willing, You can also gain an extra ability once per day when you cast a transmutation spell on yourself. Pretty nice overall.

Amorphous Anatomy: Immunity to critical hits and sneak attacks, blindsight 60, and DR 5/-. Very nice, nothing to complain about here.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: Because the lower-level powers aren't as exciting as the higher level ones, this bloodline isn't the best for EH/VMC.

Final Thought: This bloodline is full of flavor and overall not bad, with really excellent spells and really great bonus feats, but the early bloodline powers leave a bit to be desired. It also doesn't give you a lot of combat options other than going melee, which you'd be very good at, but really if you want to be a melee character, you should be a different class, in my opinion.


Battlefield control, debuffing, blasting, everything else [Void-Touched]

Your ancestors have dreamed of the stars, and have spent just a little too much time looking at them, or rather the empty space between them. The abilites granted by this bloodline are all space-related, obviously. Source = APG.

Class Skill: Knowledge (nature) - This skill comes up often enough to be very useful. Determining what animals and magical beasts are and what their weaknesses and resistances are can be very useful.

Bonus Spells: unseen servant (3rd), glitterdust (5th), blink (7th), call lightning storm (9th; dealing fire damage, damage increased outdoors at night), overland flight (11th), repulsion (13th), reverse gravity (15th), greater prying eyes (17th), meteor swarm (19th). These are decent spells, though unseen servant is pretty weak for your 1st-level bonus spell. Glitterdust and blink are great, overland flight is excellent, and repulsion can keep the enemy’s front-line fighter from getting near you, which is ALWAYS a good thing.

Bonus Feats: This is a really nice set of feats. Skill Focus (Perception) is a great way to use a bloodline feat, as are Toughness and Iron Will. None of the rest are really bad, so overall I like this list.

Arcana: When you cast an evocation spell, you might dazzle the targets. Sadly, dazzled is the weakest of the negative conditions, so this just doesn’t hold water as you get to higher levels.

[Void-Touched Arcana]: This is more like it! If you’re able to affect an enemy caster with one of your evocation spells, you silence them for a round, preventing verbal-component spells. Use this against an enemy bard, seriously!

Bloodline Powers:

Minute Meteors: 1d4 + ½ level damage is so miniscule that this is even worse than the elemental ray powers. BOO! Drop it for Blood Havoc.

[Black Motes]: See Minute Meteors. Drop it for Blood Havoc.

Voidwalker: This is pretty cool. Though the resistances aren’t anything really exciting, not having to breathe means you aren’t going to be effected by cloud-type poisons or spells that require you to breathe something in. Very nice.

Aurora Borealis: This is basically a wall of cold spell, but you also can fascinate a whole bunch of creatures, so it could come in really handy.

[Voidfield]: Ice storm and deeper darkness combined into one spell is REALLY nice. Note that there is most likely a typo in the description of this ability, since it says you can use it once per day at 3rd level and once more every three levels, even though you don’t actually get the ability until 9th level. Your DM might rule that you get to use it only once at 9th level (as it was probably intended) instead of three times (as it is currently written).

Breaching the Gulf: Anything that raises your effective caster level is good, and you get the added bonus of transporting an enemy into the “void of space” if the fail a will save, dealing tons of cold damage and causing them to hold their breath or risk suffocation. They get a new save each round to try to come back, but it’s likely that if they fail their first save, they’ll be staying away for at least a few rounds, taking mountains of cold damage in the process.

Starborn: This is a super flavorful and cool capstone. Immunity to cold and blindness, you can see perfectly in any type of darkness, and you gain fast healing when under the stars at night. Nicely written!

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This one has a terrible 1st-level power, though it might be worth your while to pick up voidwalker or aurora borealis. Overall though, just not the best option.

Final Thought: Overall, I really like this bloodline. It’s flavorful, you get several really cool abilities, and the class skill and spell lists are decent. You’re going to be sad during the first few levels, since your 1st-level bloodline power stinks in either case, but once you hit 9th level to get Voidfield I think it’ll all be worth it. This one might be a good Eldritch Heritage choice for a Witch, since Aurora Borealis could help you control the battlefield a bit while you hex the crap out of everyone.


Blasting, battlefield control, debuffing [Arial - Blasting]

You family may have had a storm giant or other air-based outsider in its distant past, and that love for wind and lightning has been passed to you. Source = APG.

Class Skill: Knowledge (nature) - This skill comes up often enough to be very useful. Determining what animals and magical beasts are and what their weaknesses and resistances are can be very useful.

Bonus Spells: shocking grasp (3rd), gust of wind (5th), lightning bolt (7th), shout (9th), overland flight (11th), chain lightning (13th), control weather (15th), whirlwind (17th), storm of vengeance (19th). This list of spells is great for a blaster, and you’ll notice that control weather is rated sky blue here. This is because of the effect that you get from the Arial version’s arcana, which raises your effective caster level by 2 during any form of precipitation.

Bonus Feats: For a blaster/controller type, Enlarge Spell, Wind Stance and Skill Focus (fly) are all great feats, so this is a decent list. You might want to consider grabbing a few of the Bloodline Mutations though, since they're all excellent blasting-focused abilities.

Arcana: An increase to saving throws is good, but the Arial version arcana is definitely stronger, so look at that one for sure.

[Arial Arcana]: Increase your effective caster level by TWO anytime there’s precipitation of any kind. Just a quick look through the list of sor/wiz spells that could theoretically cause “precipitation” yields the following: drench (that one’s a cantrip that lasts 1 round, so if you cast it the first round on yourself you could theoretically cast another spell the following round before it expires), sleet storm, stone call, ash storm, ice storm, volcanic storm, control weather, or storm of vengeance. Obviously a few of these might be subject to GM discretion on what constitutes “precipitation.”

Bloodline Powers:

Thunderstaff: This is a great buff to give your allies at lower levels, because a fighter or ranger doing an extra 1d6 of electricity damage can be a huge boost.

Stormchild: The resistances are nice, but the best part of this one is gaining limited blindsense, which means you can target enemies with 60 feet of you with area of effect spells without having to worry about a miss chance (normally if you can’t see, you can’t target even an area).

Thunderbolt: This is a nice boost to blasting, and it’s cool that half the damage is sonic so it has less of a chance of being resisted. I like it.

[Windcaller]: You get free uses of control winds, which is cool, but it doesn’t help you get that precipitation you need for the boost in caster level, so it could be better.

Ride the Lightning: You turn into a lightning bolt, dealing damage equal to your Thunderbolt power along the way. One interesting question that comes up, though, is what happens for the Arial bloodline, which doesn’t actually HAVE the Thunderbolt power. I guess as written, you’d be able to move the same way but wouldn’t affect any creatures along the path, but that’s pretty lame. Because of the discrepancy, I have to rate this a little lower than I normally would.

Stormlord: Several immunities, blindsight 120ft in weather, and HEAL from electricity or sonic effects. This is an EXCELLENT capstone.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This bloodline has useful early powers and limited blindsense is extremely nice. I could see a witch looking to go into the Winter Witch prestige class taking this to get Stormchild. Overall a pretty good option.

Final Thought: This bloodline has very nice powers overall, and it’s cool to turn into a god of storms, so I recommend it. The boost to caster level in precipitation is really cool, so try to take advantage of it as much as possible. Other ways you can get precipitation to happen could be:

1) take Improved Familiar to get a steam mephit familiar, which can use Boiling Rain once per day

2) use this bloodline along with Crossblooded (Boreal) to gain the Snow Shroud ability

3) buy some really expensive item that lets you control the weather, like the Staff of Weather

Anyway, this is a cool bloodline. Have fun with it!


Debuffing, battlefield control, everything else [Sanguine]

This is a pretty easy bloodline to explain... you had some type of undead creature in your ancestry, long ago (most likely a vampire, cuz honestly what other type of undead would anyone want to get with?) The abilities and spells are obviously skewed toward the undead-controlling or animating, so this one isn’t as great for good-only campaigns, but it can be a lot of fun! Source = CRB.

Class Skill: Knowledge (religion) - It’s always good to be able to identify undead creatures and know their strengths and weaknesses, and this is the only bloodline that adds this particular skill to your class skill list, so I like it.

Bonus Spells: chill touch (3rd), false life (5th), vampiric touch (7th), animate dead (9th), waves of fatigue (11th), undeath to death (13th), finger of death (15th), horrid wilting (17th), energy drain (19th). This list of spells is obviously very necromancy-heavy, but it’s got some good spells on it. False life is one of the best spells for ANY character out there, so it gets the coveted sky blue from me. Several of the other spells require touch attacks, so that can be a little more tricky, but they have good effects, so they’re probably worth it. All in all, a very decent spell list.

Bonus Feats: A nice list of feats, including Combat Casting, Toughness, Spell Focus, and Skill Focus in your new class skill. No complaints here at all.

Arcana: This one is excellent. Having undead be affected by things like charm person and dominate person can be a serious boost to your utility as a caster.

[Sanguine Arcana]: I’ll take a straight caster level boost for necromancy spells any day. Golden.

Bloodline Powers:

Grave Touch: If you’re okay going into melee range, this is a decent power, because it’s not JUST the shaken condition that it can cause, but you can upgrade a shaken creature to frightened, which is excellent. Melee is still hard for a sorcerer though, so I can’t rate it too high.

[The Blood Is the Life]: This one is going to be really hard to pull off in a good-aligned party, and honestly it’s not that good. Infernal healing will give you back more hit points than this does. I’d say if you go with the Sanguine version of this bloodline to get the arcana, you should consider taking one of the archetypes that lets you give up your 1st-level bloodline power (like Tattooed Sorcerer) or taking Blood Havoc instead.

Death’s Gift: Nonlethal damage doesn’t come up often enough for this to be really great. Cold resistance is nice, but it would have been better to have resistance 10 instead of 5 to start off. I’m not impressed.

Grasp of the Dead: This is a cool power. It deals decent damage in a large range, and can save you a few spell slots on things like fireball. I like it.

Incorporeal Form: This is really excellent. I think a lot of people are turned off by the fact that your spells only deal half damage to corporeal creatures when you’re incorporeal, but there are so many spells that don’t deal damage and are just excellent, you shouldn’t even notice. I love it.

One of Us: You turn pseudo-undead, gaining several immunities and resistances, and DR 5/-. Not being noticed by unintelligent undead is nice, but at 20th level, there are very few unintelligent undead that could be even a tiny challenge for you. As a capstone, this one’s just okay.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: For a melee combatant, this one is okay, but honestly go look at the Ghoul bloodline instead... it's pretty much hands-down better than this one.

Final Thought: This is a great, flavorful bloodline that is a no-brainer for a necromancer-type character, but could be a good choice for any mind-controlling-focused Sorcerer too. The really good powers really aren’t eady to get with Eldritch Heritage, so I wouldn’t recommend it.


Summoning, battlefield control, everything else [Groveborn - Summoning]

You probably come from a long line of druids, but your innate magic has manifested as arcane ability rather than divine powers. You love plants, and they love you. Source = APG.

Class Skill: Knowledge (nature) - This one’s always great for recognizing the creatures you’re going to fight, so it’s a good choice.

Bonus Spells: entangle (3rd), barkskin (5th), speak with plants (7th), command plants (9th), wall of thorns (11th), transport via plants (13th), plant shape III (15th), animate plants (17th), shambler (19th). This spell list is just chock full of spells that you normally wouldn’t get as a Sorcerer, so take full advantage of them. Entangle is a great way to start off, and command plants can be really helpful too. Your highest-level spell, shambler, creates a whole bunch of shambling mounds, which is both awesome and hilarious. I love this list.

Bonus Feats: These feats aren’t the best out there, but there are a few worth taking, namely Toughness, Fleet, and Acrobatic Steps (so that you don’t get caught in your own plants).

Arcana: This power gives you a natural armor bonus anytime you cast a spell with a range of personal, so essentially it gives you a free buff anytime you cast a buff. It’s a good ability, but since it doesn’t stack with other natural armor bonuses, it can become quickly useless at higher levels.

[Groveborn Arcana]: This would be an excellent power if there were just more plant creatures out there. Honestly, in most campaigns you might come across two or three plant-types ever. If you know ahead of time that there will be a lot of plants (say you’ve been told you’re going to an island controlled by Vegepygmies or something), then this turns blue, but otherwise sadly it must be orange.

Bloodline Powers:

Tanglevine: Disarm or trip your opponents from range, adding your casting stat to CMB. This is awesome.

Photosynthesis: Not the most useful power out there, unless you’re stranded somewhere with no food around. The bonus against poisons is nice, but you can find better 3rd-level powers out there (such as Lush Summoning).

[Lush Summoning]: Increasing the natural armor of your summoned creatures is great, and the bonus against several different effects is really nice too. This one is way better than Photosynthesis.

Massmorph: This, wow. So, you get unlimited uses of both plant growth and diminish plants (both spells you wouldn’t normally have access too, and both 3rd-level spells, not bad) AND you can turn a non-plant creature into a plant (making it immune to mind-affecting effects, etc.). Turn the druid’s animal companion into a Treant! Sweet!

Rooting: Slowing yourself down is sucky, but the +4 to natural armor is really nice, and the fast healing is definitely where this ability is at. Your Tremorsense also means people aren’t going to sneak up on you, ever. If I were you, I’d use a fly spell to move somewhere high up on a ledge or something, then root there and heal up while throwing spells down on the enemies.

Shepherd of the Trees: You essentially become a plant. There’s one huge disadvantage to this capstone, though... you become immune to polymorph effects... meaning you can NEVER cast form of the dragon, cat’s grace, or any of those other really awesome spells on yourself. That sucks, so this becomes orange for me.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: Tanglevine is extremely useful, and I could see a barbarian or other fighter character making excellent use of it. Massmorph comes in late but is excellent as well. This one's a contender.

Final Thought: This bloodline is nice, with the regular and Wildblooded versions being better at slightly different things. If you’re going to be summoning creatures, go with Groveborn for the bonus to those summons’ natural armor. If you’re a straight buffer, you’re probably better off with regular Verdant. This could be a great Eldritch Heritage for a ranged Fighter or Ranger, because the Tanglevine ability could really come in handy for distancing yourself from an enemy while simultaneously shutting him out of the fight with a trip or disarm.

Racial Bloodlines:

These two bloodlines are only available to certain races, and they’re from the Advanced Race Guide. If you’re going to play a Human (or an Aasimar with the Scion of Humanity racial trait) or a Kobold, take a look at these.


Buffing, debuffing, everything else

This bloodline is all about humans, and our lust for conquest and making a name for ourselves. You were descended from a long line of kings, and their awesomeness somehow made you magical... ? Whatever, check it out. Source = ARG.

Class Skill: Perform (oratory) - The MOST useless class skill of them all. If there was something worse than red, I’d give it that.

Bonus Spells: moment of greatness (3rd), eagle's splendor (5th), heroism (7th), threefold aspect (9th), greater command (11th), repulsion (13th), greater age resistance (15th), prediction of failure (17th), overwhelming presence (19th). Holy crap, these are some good spells. Look at how you can combine them to buff yourself to crazy levels: cast threefold aspect along with greater age resistance. You look like an old fogey, but you get +4 to Wis and Int with no penalties. Then cast eagle’s splendor, that’s +4 to Cha. Then cast heroism and moment of greatness, and you can double the heroism bonus. Finally, cast prediction of failure, which leaves your target PERMANENTLY sickened and shaken if they fail their save, or sickened and shaken for a bunch of rounds if they make their save.

Bonus Feats: The feats presented here are actually really interesting, but have one really big flaw... the good ones have prerequisites that a single-classed Sorcerer can never fulfull! For example, if you chose Heroic Defiance, then once per day you could delay a negative effect on you (such as paralysis) by one round, and that would give you time to cast surmount affliction and have the effect delayed much longer, BUT Heroic Defiance requires Diehard, Endurance, and a +8 base Fortitude save! Heroic Recovery is also great, since you can choose to reroll a saving throw once per day, but at least you can eventually get the required +4 base Fort save for this one. I’ve gotta rate this low because of the insane prereqs, but it really could have been one of the best set of bloodline feats out there. At least this list still has Improved Initiative.

Arcana: If you’re going for an Intimidate build, this is great, but it’s much more likely that you’re not, in which case it’s crap.

Bloodline Powers:

Student of Humanity: Adding more class skills is cool, but it’s not one of the better first-level bloodline powers out there, mostly because it’s unlikely that you have sufficient skill points to make good use of all of those extra class skills.

Heroic Echo: This is probably one of the best abilities in the whole game. Seriously. You’ve just effectively doubled your own bonus from heroism, you’re going to get extra bonuses from your party’s bard, it’s just awesome! And, at 9th level, you can SHARE IT! Note that for a Barbarian to get this is really excellent, and highly recommended (it also gives you a reason to have an odd-numbered Str and Con score).

Take Your Best Shot: This stacks up with the arcana, but again, unless you’re working on an Intimidate-based build, it sucks.

Heroic Legends: Hey, you remember that awesome ability you got at 3rd level that let you add +1 to morale bonuses? Well, now you can give a morale bonus to saving throws everyone around you AND add +1 to it. You just became a better bard than a bard. If only you got Inspire Courage along with this one.

Immortal Legend: Wizards have to work their whole lives to learn how to become immortal... you just say “hmm, look how awesome I am, I think I’ll stop aging now.” And then you do. Sweet.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: This is crazy good for a bloodrager, and also good for a bard or skald. I could see heroic echo used in a myriad of ways by pretty much any character. A solid choice.

Final Thought: This bloodline is a mix of awesome and weird, and honestly I love every second of it. It’s flavorful, the Heroic Echo ability pairs so well with having a bard in your party that you’ll just destroy your enemies, and if you DID decide to build an Intimidate build, this is the way to do it. Eldritch Heritage this one for a buffer bard, that’s a no-brainer.


Battlefield control, everything else

The kobold bloodline is just that, you’re a kobold, and your race has devolved from dragons so much that you get different bloodline powers now. They’re very sneaky and Rogue-ish, as you’d expect from a kobold sorcerer, so check it out. Source = ARG.

Class Skill: Disable Device - This one can come in really handy, especially if you don’t have a good Rogue-type in your party. It’s a solid choice.

Bonus Spells: alarm (3rd), create pit (5th), explosive runes (7th), dragon's breath (9th), transmute rock to mud (11th), guards and wards (13th), delayed blast fireball (15th), form of the dragon III (17th), imprisonment (19th). These spells lean very much toward defending your kobold warren, with alarm, explosive runes, and guards and wards all designed to keep enemies from reaching you as opposed to fighting them directly. Once they do get close enough to start to scare you a little, just cast a delayed blast fireball and then form of the dragon III and go to town.

Bonus Feats: This list of feats is all about using your Dex mod for as many things as possible, and I very much approve of it. Improved Initiative, Dodge, and Defensive Combat Training will all help keep you alive, and that’s what usually matters most to a kobold.

Arcana: This arcana just BEGS to be used along with the Arcane Trickster PrC, so go to town! You’re going to want to use Stealth a lot with this one.. maybe Crossblooded between Kobold and Shadow could be helpful?

Bloodline Powers:

Trap Rune: You can lay magical traps (which normally require much higher level spells, BTW), and they can last up to 24 hours. Again, we’re continuing with the whole “don’t let them get near you” approach to spellcasting, which I approve of.

Trap Sense: This will be useful, especially if you’re going to be the party’s Rogue. I like it.

Arcane Ambush: This is decent, but you’re probably better off casting a blast spell at the enemy instead of using your standard action to give a small boost to your allies’ attack and damage that only works if they’re flanking. If you’re in a party full of rogues, this is awesome, otherwise I’m not impressed.

Earth Glide: An alternate means of transportation is always good, though I prefer a fly speed to a burrow speed.

Nimble Walker: This is not good enough to be a capstone. Thumbs down.

Eldritch Heritage/VMC: A trapper ranger or any other character with access to ranger traps could benefit greatly from these abilities, though you will probably already have trap sense in that case, so skip the 3rd-level power if you can.

Final Thought: If you’re playing as a kobold Sorcerer, this bloodline deserves a look. You can lay a bunch of traps, and that’s always cool. A kobold Ranger (Trapper archetype) would do well to consider using Eldritch Heritage to pick up Trap Rune and Trap Sense.

Well, that’s it guys, that’s all the bloodlines currently available. I hope you’ve enjoyed my guide, and that you took something useful from it. I’ve enjoyed writing it, and I hope to do another guide in the (not very near, since this took a LONG time) future!