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I'm playing an Ifrit Bard and took the Flamesinger archetype in Pathfinder 1e for both flavor and fun, partially on my interpretation of the first "exchange" of the archetype which is the following

A flamesinger gains Fire Music as a bonus feat at 1st level (without needing the meet the normal prerequisites). At 4th level (when she gains access to 2nd-level spells), she adds summon monster I and summon monster II to her bard spells known; every 3 levels thereafter she gains the next level of summon monster, until she adds summon monster VI to her spells known at 16th level. The flamesinger must apply the Fire Music feat’s effect when casting these spells.

This ability replaces bardic knowledge and lore master.

My interpretation of this is that at level 4 (when you gain access to 2nd level spells), the bard gains Summon Monster I and II as free, bonus spells (that don't take up known spell slots). This seemed to be the natural reading of the ability and a semi-fair balance for giving up bardic knowledge and lore master.

The issue arose when I leveled up to 4 using PcGen and it automatically gave me S.M I and II, but it assigned them to my level 1 spell pool and restricted my ability to learn new level 1 spells.

When I brought this up with my GM, we began to research to dig deeper into what exactly the ability "should" do, and we were unable to come to a good consensus or find any good rule backing for any of our interpretations.

How do y'all interpret this ability (with precedent/rule backings for more established archetypes, since Flamesinger is relatively new)?

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    \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to RPG.SE! Take the tour if you haven't already and see the help center or ask us here in the comments (use @ to ping someone) if you need more guidance. Good Luck and Happy Gaming! \$\endgroup\$ – Someone_Evil Feb 29 '20 at 13:39
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Yes, added spells known are in addition to spells you already know.

The language in the flamesinger's Fire Music feature says:

... she adds summon monster I and summon monster II to her bard spells known ...

This is similar language as the human bard option in the Table: Alternate Favored Class Bonuses.

Add one spell known from the bard spell list...

If adding known spells was still limited to the values in Table: Bard Spells Known, then these features would not make sense; a flamesinger can already learn summon monster, and a human bard already learns spells upon reaching new levels. So the intended meaning is that "adding" spells are in addition to the number in Table: Bard Spells Known.

Also note that PCGen is an unofficially developed product, and many of the game mechanics are either not imported or not implemented correctly. PCGen's implementation of flamesinger is incorrect. Fortunately there is a menu to manually add bonus spells known, so you can use that to bypass this restriction.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you the answer and the comparison to the human bard favored class bonus! My GM decided he was okay with this interpretation and it's good to know about the menu option. \$\endgroup\$ – tfuqua Feb 29 '20 at 19:59

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