As staunch believers in the value of higher ground, the developed special fighting styles that capitalize on fighting from above. While many dismiss such techniques as a niche tactic, aerial assaulters leap to great heights and create higher ground where there is none.
This alters the fighter’s skills.
Aerial Expertise (Ex)
At 2nd level, an aerial assaulter gains a +2 bonus on Fly checks. Additionally, whenever he is affected by a spell or ability that grants him a fly speed, he treats that spell or ability as though its caster level were 2 higher for the purposes of determining its effects. At 6th level and every 4 levels thereafter, this bonus on Fly checks increases by an additional 2, to a maximum of +10 at 18th level.
This replaces bravery.
Take the High Ground (Ex)
At 2nd level, an aerial assaulter can leap above his foes to gain an advantage in combat. As a move action, he can attempt an Acrobatics check with the DC equal to the CMD of an adjacent enemy. If he succeeds, the aerial assaulter is treated as if he had higher ground against that enemy until the beginning of his next turn. At 4th level and every 4 levels thereafter, an aerial assaulter increases his bonus from higher ground by 1, to a total of a +6 bonus at 20th level. At 12th level, an aerial assaulter can use this ability as a swift action.
This replaces the bonus feats gained at 2nd and 12th level.
Aerial Dodge (Ex)
At 19th level, an aerial assaulter can perform an aerial dodge that allows him to evade attacks while flying. As an immediate action, when an opponent attempts an attack against the aerial assaulter, he can attempt a Fly check with a DC equal to the result of the attacker’s attack roll. If he succeeds, he can take a 5-foot step and gain a dodge bonus to his AC equal to his Dexterity modifier. This movement doesn’t negate the attack if the aerial assaulter remains in range of the attacking enemy’s reach at the end of the 5-foot step. If the Fly check fails, the aerial assaulter does not move, does not gain an AC bonus, and provokes an attack of opportunity from each creature that threatens him, including the initial attacker. The aerial assaulter must be flying to use this ability.
This replaces armor mastery.
High Ground Mastery (Ex)
At 20th level, whenever an aerial assaulter threatens a critical hit with an attack made from higher ground, he automatically confirms the critical hit, and the weapon’s damage multiplier is increased by 1. In addition, all bull rush, dirty trick, drag, grapple, reposition, and trip combat maneuver checks against the aerial assaulter fail when attempted by opponents on lower ground than he is.
This replaces weapon mastery.
Pathfinder Player Companion: Blood of the Ancients © 2018, Paizo Inc.; Authors: John Compton, Andrew Hoskins, James Jacobs, Mikko Kallo, Alex Riggs, Stephen Rowe, and Jeffrey Swank.