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Qinggong Monk is notorious for having a "8th level" Ki power category but only have the opportunity to take a ki power at 7 or 11. I would like to know if there is a world where you can be a Drunken Master/Qinggong Monk and got the Dragon's Breath ki power at 8.

The Unchained Monk is able to take a ki power at 8. You can't be a Drunken Master Unchained Monk. Even the Teisatsu Vigilante can take a ki power at 8. But they do not have the same ki regeneration the Drunken Master can offer. And I am trying to make a build that focus ki power and not melee. The Student of Perfection PrC gives some Ki Powers. But Qinggong Ki Powers are not part of the list.

So, some "solutions" I think of but have not find yet how to do or even if it is possible:

1. Delay the Wholeness of Body class feature, via Multiclassing

Find a class/archetype that stack with monk class level. The Brawler, for example, has a class feature that allow Brawler Class Levels to stack with Monk Class Levels for feat requirements... But I think a Monk 6/Brawler 1/Monk 7 would not be equal to Monk CL 8.

2. Find a Monk archetype that delay the acquisition to wholeness of body.

But as far as I know, there is none.

3. Find a way to recover Ki Points reliably.

(Ki Leech is not really reliable) and most of magical items are limited and/or require you to multiclass as something with channel energy. If there was a way to do that, Vigilante/unchained Monk would be more appealing for what I am trying to do.

So... Is there a way to get Dragon's Breath or any other 8th Ki Power as a Qinggong Monk, at ECL8?

If not, is there something that allow to get your Ki Points reliably, in order for me not to be Ki points starved?

(Wyrwood, Ki leech etc... Are interesting but not reliable since you have to confirm a crit or kill something. And getting a Channel Energy would delay the acquisition of the monk's features...)

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Confirming crits doesn't need to be unreliable. A coup de grace always crits, so you just need to tie down your sacrifices beforehand. Related, you can buy live centipedes for only 1 copper each. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 25 at 1:46

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I'll address your options in sequence.

  1. Delay the Wholeness of Body class feature, via Multiclassing

Brawler, for example, has a class feature that allow Brawler Class Levels to stack with Monk Class Levels for feat requirements.

The 8th level dragon's breath power is not a feat, so you would still only count as an 7th level Monk for Ki Powers as Monk 7 / Brawler 1.

However the student of perfection has a rule for taking it's Ki powers at 2nd level:

If a ki power from Pathfinder Unchained is followed by a level in parentheses, use that as the minimum character level (instead of the level given in Pathfinder Unchained).

So take your 7th and 8th levels in student of perfection to gain an unchained monk power. Such as the Qinggong Power to choose dragon's breath at ECL 8.

  1. Find a Monk archetype that delay the acquisition to wholeness of body.

As you suspected, I could not find any archetypes that delay instead of replace wholeness of body.

  1. Find a way to recover Ki Points reliably.
  • The Ki Mat can regain one ki point per hour.
  • The Master's Name can recovers a number of ki points equal to half his total ki pool once per day.

So... Is there a way to get Dragon's Breath or any other 8th Ki Power as a Qinggong Monk, at ECL8?

At the GM's discretion, you may use the retraining rules to retrain your 7th level power to the 8th level dragon's breath power.

If an archetype or variant class feature replaces the listed class feature, at the GM’s discretion you may retrain that alternative class feature for an equivalent variant class feature. For example, Ultimate Magic presents rules for inquisitions, which inquisitors can select in place of a domain, and the inquisitor entry below allows you to retrain your chosen domain, so you are allowed to instead retrain an inquisition, swapping it for a domain or another inquisition.

The rules for class feature retaining has a restriction:

Retraining a class feature means you lose the old class feature and gain a new one that you could otherwise qualify for at that point in your level advancement.

But everything else can be used to make technically illegal characters. When the book came out, there was Know Direction podcast that clarified this point. It starts at 1:35:02.

Combining these two, I think may GM's would allow you to retain your 7th level Monk Ki Power at your 8th Monk Level.

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    \$\begingroup\$ You know what? I knew everything you just said, because I looked for an alternative for days. But I missed just... ONE sentence of the Student of perfection prestige class. "At 2nd level and every 2 levels thereafter, a student of perfection can select one ki power chosen from the unchained monk options listed directly below or from the new ki powers detailed afterward." OR. You do not have to take a power from the list. You can take one from the unchained monk. Which... Solve my problem. One day, I should learn to read. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ednoc
    Jan 31 at 19:30
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    \$\begingroup\$ I’ve played a Student of Perfection. That was a fun game ;-) \$\endgroup\$ Jan 31 at 19:35

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