So, in an upcoming campaign I wanted to play a dwarven battlerager. This was a prestige class from 3.5, however we are playing pathfinder. I am not a fan of converting the prestige class and am not a fan of prestige classes in general.

How could I best build a dwarven "rager" character, to be effective in melee combat, using the following guidelines.

  1. Official pathfinder material only ideally, willing to accept accepted pathfinder material as well if it helps fit the mold.
  2. Starts at level 1 and goes thru 20
  3. Ideally remains a single class, however dipping to grab key skills is acceptable
  4. Focus on heavy spiked armor, gauntlets,spiked helmets and grappling as forms of attacking.
  5. Has the ability to rage, simulating the battlerager rage abilities.
  6. Has decent survivabilty, so he doesnt rage and run into combat, then die.
  • \$\begingroup\$ Related: Is there a Dwarven Battlerager equivalent class for pathfinder? \$\endgroup\$
    – mxyzplk
    Commented Feb 14, 2016 at 17:28
  • \$\begingroup\$ Check out the related question's answer, which is a suggestion for how to make it an archetype for the pathfinder barbarian. - Might be worth asking your GM about it. \$\endgroup\$
    – Julix
    Commented Feb 15, 2016 at 0:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Julix The related question was his question. It would appear he no longer wants a conversion. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented Feb 15, 2016 at 6:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes, the conversion was a good start, but quite frankly not an ideal solution. \$\endgroup\$
    – Mayshar
    Commented Feb 15, 2016 at 13:50

1 Answer 1


You can just go straight unchained barbarian, with the armored hulk archetype to get heavy armor, and then use your feats and rage powers to get two-weapon fighting and add-ons for bull rush, overrun, grappling, etc.

Here's a sample build at level 10. With rage (35 rounds a day...) and Power Attack turned on.

Dwarf barbarian (unchained, armored hulk) 10 (Pathfinder RPG Ultimate Combat 28, Pathfinder Unchained 8)
CN Medium humanoid (dwarf)
Init +0; Senses darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +10
AC 21, touch 8, flat-footed 21 (+10 armor, +3 shield, -2 untyped penalty)
hp 121 (10d12+50)
Fort +10, Ref +3 (+1 bonus vs. trample attacks), Will +6; +2 vs. poison, spells, and spell-like abilities
Defensive Abilities defensive training; DR 2/—; Resist fire 2
Speed 30 ft.
Melee +1 fire-forged steel armor spikes +13/+8 (1d6+14) or
   +1 fire-forged steel spiked gauntlet +15/+10 (1d4+14) and
   +1 bashing shield spikes heavy steel shield bash +13/+8 (2d6+8)
Special Attacks  rage (35 rounds/day), hatred, rage powers (brawler[APG], brawler, greater[APG], knockback, overbearing advance[APG], overbearing onslaught[APG])
Str 21, Dex 10, Con 16, Int 10, Wis 12, Cha 8
Base Atk +10; CMB +15 (+17 bull rush, +19 overrun); CMD 23 (29 vs. bull rush, 26 vs. overrun, 27 vs. trip)
Feats Flying Tackle, Improved Bull Rush, Improved Overrun, Power Attack, Spiked Destroyer
Traits pugilist, shield-trained
Skills Acrobatics +4, Appraise +0 (+2 to assess nonmagical metals or gemstones), Climb +10, Intimidate +5, Perception +10 (+12 to notice unusual stonework), Stealth -8, Survival +12, Swim +10; Racial Modifiers +2 Appraise to assess nonmagical metals or gemstones, +2 Perception to notice unusual stonework
Languages Common, Dwarven
SQ fire-forged steel, fire-forged steel, indomitable stance, resilience of steel
Other Gear +1 armor spikes fire-forged steel full plate, +1 bashing shield spikes heavy steel shield, +1 fire-forged steel spiked gauntlet, +1 fire-forged steel spiked gauntlet, belt of thunderous charging[UE], boots of the mastodon[UE], demonspike pauldrons[UE], 150 gp
Special Abilities
Brawler While raging, the barbarian is treated as if she has Improved Unarmed Strike. If she already has the feat, her unarmed strikes deal 1d6 points of damage (1d4 if she is Small).
Brawler, Greater While raging, the barbarian is treated as if she has Two-Weapon Fighting when making unarmed strike attacks. A barbarian must have the brawler rage power to select this rage power.
Damage Reduction (2/-) You have Damage Reduction against all attacks.
Darkvision (60 feet) You can see in the dark (black and white only).
Defensive Training +4 Gain a dodge bonus to AC vs. monsters of the Giant subtype.
Energy Resistance, Fire (2) You have the specified Energy Resistance against Fire attacks.
Fire-Forged Steel Dwarves stumbled across the secret of crafting fire-forged steel in an effort to make forge-friendly tools. It didn’t take them long to adapt its unique properties to arms and armor. Fire-forged steel channels heat in one direction to protect its w
Fire-Forged Steel Dwarves stumbled across the secret of crafting fire-forged steel in an effort to make forge-friendly tools. It didn’t take them long to adapt its unique properties to arms and armor. Fire-forged steel channels heat in one direction to protect its w
Flying Tackle If overrun vs. flat-footed opponent knocks target prone, you may drop prone to initiate grapple.
Greed +2 to Appraise to determine price of nonmagic goods with precious metals or gemstones.
Hatred +1 Gain a racial bonus to attacks vs. Goblinoids/Orcs.
Improved Bull Rush You don't provoke attacks of opportunity when bull rushing.
Improved Overrun You don't provoke attacks of opportunity when overrunning, and foe can't choose to avoid you.
Indomitable Stance (Ex) +1 to Reflex vs. trample & to hit, dam, and AC vs. charging foe.
Knockback (1/round) (Ex) While raging, can bull rush in place of an att, dealing a little dam.
Overbearing Advance +5 (Ex) Overrun maneuvers also deal STR bonus in damage
Overbearing Onslaught (Ex) You can overrun more than one target per round.
Power Attack -3/+6 You can subtract from your attack roll to add to your damage.
Rage (Unchained, 35 rounds/day) (Ex) As a free action, gain temp hp, bonus to melee att/dam, thrown dam, will saves, but AC penalty and limited actions. 1 min fatigue when ended.
Resilience of Steel +3 (Ex) Gain bonus to AC vs. a foe's critical confirmation rolls.
Spiked Destroyer You can attack with your armor spikes while using bull rush or overrun.

Prerequisite: Proficient with armor spikes.

Benefit: When you succeed at a bull rush or overrun combat maneuver, you may automatically make an attack 
Stonecunning +2 +2 bonus to Perception vs. unusual stonework. Free check within 10 feet.

The Greater Brawler rage power gives you two-weapon fighting while raging and the shield-trained trait makes that heavy steel shield a light weapon. Both bull rushes and overruns have lots of add-on stuff - when you overrun you get to automatically do your STR mod in damage (Overbearing Advance rage power), a swift action armor spiked attack (Spiked Destroyer feat), if they're flat-footed you get to knock them down and start a grapple with your armor spikes (Flying Tackle feat), and you can overrun multiple people a round with only a -2 CMB each (Overbearing Onslaught rage power), and more (including trampling a Large opponent) if you trigger the trample on the boots...

  • \$\begingroup\$ I wasnt aware the armored hulk variant and powers would so nicely fit the concept, but it sounds like this is a pretty good way to go. \$\endgroup\$
    – Mayshar
    Commented Feb 15, 2016 at 13:52

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