I'm looking for help with building a bomb-slinging alchemist at level 10. Assume 25 point buy for initial generation. The focus is getting the most effective bomb usage possible. Fast bombs is clearly desired the moment it becomes a legal choice allowing for multiple attacks due to BAB progression, rapid shot feat, and possibly other options. Source options are Core, Advanced Players Guide, Ultimate Magic, and Ultimate Combat. Which class-related options should I be considering? I do not need a complete character build.
It's important to note that (with Fast Bombs) you can throw bombs with both hands if you get the Two Weapon Fighting feats, and this stacks with Rapid Shot. This lets a 10th level alchemist throw five bombs a round at +3/+3/+3/-2/-2 (before adding Dex or point-blank). Not very high, but you don't need that high a bonus. Personally I'd go this route before going for Rapid Shot, simply because you can continue gaining more attacks as you spend more feats.
You're also likely to want dispelling bombs for the sheer utility.
I have a player who is doing just this kind of build, so I think I can help you a little.
You don't have a lot of options when related to combat feats. The following you should consider your main focus:
- Point-Blank Shot : Because it is a prerequisite to:
- Precise Shot: You don't want a -4 even though you're trying to hit touch AC most of the time.
- Extra Discovery: Because a lot of your awesomeness will come from your discoveries.
- Extra Bombs: Everyone loves more bombs.
(Important to note, Deadly Aim does not work with bombs)
- Precise Bombs: Hitting your allies is a quick way to getting yourself murdered by your party.
- Smoke Bomb: Mostly because you need this to get:
- Stink Bomb: Because when your enemies are vomiting, they can't attack you.
- Force Bomb: When everyone else is doing 1/2 damage to incorporeal things, you'll be laughing at them. Added bonus? It will knock them prone if they fail a Reflex save.
- Fast Bombs: Like you said, you need this when you hit more attacks per round.
- Confusion Bomb: When your enemies are confused, there's a 75% chance per round they're doing something that doesn't hurt you (because you should be in the back).
- Cognitogen: Your damage is based on Int. Pump your damage!
Arguably, Alchemists are a 1 attribute class. This is Intelligence. Your bombs per day and additional bomb damage are based off of this. Bump it fairly high at the beginning and then put a little into Dex, so you can reliably hit Touch AC and a little into Con, so you're not super-squishy.
You'll be aiming for Touch AC most of the time, so you don't need to worry too much about whether or not you're going to hit them. Plus if they have a touch AC which is too high to hit, you can simply target a grid intersection (AC 5) and just do splash damage to your foes.
Additionally, get some means of Flight, so that you can drop bombs on your enemies from above, and laugh when they only have melee weapons.
Alchemists don't get to throw extra bombs by taking two weapon fighting, it is listed as a standard action to create making the most you can throw per round 3 via Rapid Shot and the Fast Bombs discovery unless under the affect of a Haste spell or something similar. To maximize damage I suggest Clustered Shots + Targeted Bomb Admixture + Cognatogen. As a lvl 12 Elf Mindchemist I deal 6d6+20+1d6 acid from Acid Bombs per bomb throwing at 15/15/15/10 with their DR being added after all 4 bombs.