In Pathfinder 1e golems have a Magic Immunity which apparently makes them immune to all spells that allow Spell Resistance.

So how to defeat those? An obvious answer would be a buffed up fighter or something to destroy it. The catch is that we're playing as a group of only spellcasters (Witch, Wizard, 2 Sorcerers) so that's not really an option. What spells or other things can we use?

If you say spells that don't allow SR then please be specific with some actually good ones because I can't really find any. Note that we're playing at rather high level with lvl 5-6 spell slots now.

Another possibility might be summoning but most summoned creatures seem rather weak so they would have trouble with overcoming the golem's DR - so again be specific if you want to suggest summoning.

What else?


4 Answers 4


Ignore them

No golem in the game presents a threat to an 11th level full caster, nor to their slightly weaker T2 cousins. This, the Adamantine Golem, is an example of a theoretically top-tier Pathfinder golem. Note its 30-foot movement speed (for a maximum typical travel distance of 120 feet in a round, no better than default) and lack of ranged attack options. Note its inability to receive the vast majority of standard buff spells due to its magic resistance, coupled with its complete lack of feats or even skill ranks due to being the bad sort of mindless.

Your witch and wizard could cast communal mount (and the sorcerers might know mount via pages of spell knowledge or for real because they were a summoner back at level 4ish), but you could also buy normal horses instead with money and money is less valuable than spell slots so do that. Then ask (or ask) your horses to run away from the golem. Crisis averted.

Your wizard could cast hungry pit, which the golem's +9 reflex save is not enough to consistently avoid since it needs to repeat the save every round and your DC should be over 20. That leads to the golem falling down a very deep pit and then being chewed up at the bottom with no chance of escape while you safely attack it from afar (e.g. by burying it under several thousand pounds of molten lead). You could also dig the pit with mundane shovels (or have your servants do it), and then just get it fall in nonmagically-- its total perception score is +0.

You could cast overland flight and then do whatever. It can't move as fast as you, it can't fly, it can't attack at range, and your spell lasts ~11 hours.

Maybe, though, you are concerned about running into one in a confined space, like a dungeon? Recall that you have access to teleport.

But maybe it's threatening to do something bad other than harming you and stopping it is really urgent and it doesn't have to go anywhere out in the open to do that? Disable Construct should have an about-even chance of putting it out of commission on each of its castings, and the touch range can be bypassed via Spectral Hand.

Or Acid Fog which is solid fog but plus 2d6 damage per round, or other irresistible damage-dealing spells-- check pathfinder Mailman builds (most use either snowball or storm of blades, you could mix in flurry of snowballs if People of the North is replaced by Ultimate Wilderness, but it's a lot less good).

Or summoning: lantern archons, lillends, shadow demons, chaos beasts, bralani, and probably others can defeat most golems in relatively short order. With Heightened Mount plus Alter Summoned Monster you can have the summoned creatures around all day rather than for a minute or two, and you can refresh their SLAs or change them to another sort of summon entirely with another Alter Summoned Monster.

Or diplomacy, if you have Axiomatic Discourse: just because you're mindless doesn't mean you aren't a creature. And there's lots of spells that boost diplomacy.

  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ Ignore them is better said then done. The golem is in a place where we need to spend some time. :-D We did use hungry pit but it was only enough to negate the golem's healing but didn't damage him. I think the golem was customized by DM a bit. \$\endgroup\$
    – enumag
    Aug 28, 2020 at 14:27
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    \$\begingroup\$ Also, if all you have to do is stay there, put a blanket over it and roll stealth. It has a +0 perception modifier. +0. Heck, invisibility lasts minutes per level, use that if you want. \$\endgroup\$ Aug 28, 2020 at 17:42
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    \$\begingroup\$ I... kind of want to meet the GM that would allow you to stealth around a mindless high CR creature because you threw a blanket over them (and then not play in their games because that doesn't sound fun to me) \$\endgroup\$
    – Ifusaso
    Aug 28, 2020 at 21:29
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    \$\begingroup\$ using a blanket to confuse a poorly programmed automaton is the kind of story people tell for years and years and years and that kind of creativity and interesting problem solving and storytelling is largely why people play dnd \$\endgroup\$
    – user2754
    Aug 29, 2020 at 5:14
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    \$\begingroup\$ I understand what you're saying but disagree. I would expect it to be the thing laughed about for the next ~2 game sessions and then forgotten forever as unchallenging and only mildly comedic. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ifusaso
    Aug 29, 2020 at 5:57

Lantern Archons can be summoned by Summon Monster III, and will comfortably float about shooting it to death over a period of however long. You may need several castings.

If you need to stop it doing stuff, Mudball is a pretty funny way to do so. Just recast it any time it wipes it away, for the world's cruelest game of keep away.

Geyser will kill it, albeit you might need to cast it a few times.

Overland Flight, Fly, Fog Cloud, Invisibility or Silent Image will all avoid needing to fight it. It's arguable if it even will interact with illusions unless specifically instructed to do so.

Wrapping the area the golem is in in wall of ice/stone/force etc will largely neuter it too.

Grease has a very good chance of knocking it over, and it has a 55% chance of falling over any time it tries to move in the grease.

Animate Dead cast on any level appropriate enemy corpses will create some things that can probably beat the enemy - Haste and other common buffs (Blur, Displacement, Blink, Bull's Strength) will make that a sure thing.

Acid Arrow is a kind of funny way to get it done. Those d4's per turn add up, and it's Long range, a touch attack, etc. You could just sit there with overland flight and a wand and prod it with acid until it falls apart. For that matter you could sit 30' above its head pelting it with Acid Splash until it dies. Your DM may have it decide to hurl objects at you though, which could be an issue for your average squishy wizard, so probably safer to go with other options or disable it first.


Your spell options are better than you think!

With 5th and 6th level spell slots you can summon up a veritable army of lantern archons or a handful of shadow demons. Both of these can fly and target touch AC, which is abysmal for almost all golems. The shadow demon deals bonus cold damage on its attacks to circumvent DR and it's incorporeal, making it impossible or at least very difficult for any golem to deal with. Meanwhile, the lantern archons' light rays bypass all DR and outrange most golems.

Acid arrow ignores spell resistance and is highly unlikely to be resisted. I gave a quick flip through the golem list and found only clay golems to have acid defenses. One acid arrow will total 8d4 damage over the 3 rounds it stays active for a 9th/10th level caster - 20 damage average or 32 if you maximize it. Acid fog is similarly non-resistible and adds another free 2d6 per round.

On the off chance that you happen to play with the old version of snowball as some groups do, this becomes even easier. As 10th+ level casters, intensified snowballs will hit for 10d6 each; 40d6 damage per round will make short work of any golem without cold immunity.

Alternatively, stop being a group of only spellcasters.

If any settlements are around, a band of four full casters should have no problems drumming up a crew of hired hands who are more skilled in the physically hitting things department. Either hire them the conventional way or use more creative means to acquire as many meatbags as possible, then cover them with buff spells and let them do your dirty work.


Go all Magneto on them

I'm currently an arcane caster who's storming the tower of a fallen wizard we killed. There is nothing but Golems and constructs with immunity to magic.

This is a bit of an expensive option, but a creative one. I'm 11th level and have access to a very skilled crafter. I've had him make me a ring of telekinesis. I also happen to have 9 ingots of adamantine each weighing 25 lbs.

I use the Violent Thrust part of the spell. Since the CL of the crafter was 9 when he made me my ring, I only have access of up to 9X25lbs= 225lbs. I use the ring and go all Magneto on the Golems, and the Adamantine goes through their DR.

If you don't have access to Adamantine, you could use one massive hunk of metal/stone/dense object (usually you can make one from the corpse of a dead Golem i.e. fabricate) and can throw a single hunk at them. Their DR will stop some of the damage, but at least you'll get some damage through.

I like having the 25 ingots, as it gives me the option to divide my attacks when facing smaller monsters with immunity to magic.

Insert your favorite hauling strategy (my favorite is a cheap construct with a metal box to hold my ingots) and away you go.


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