PF2 Fighter Ancestries and Heritages Breakdown


The Fighter depends heavily on physical Attributes, but still has room for a lot of customization, allowing you to explore a wide variety of Ancestry options. You will want Boosts to either Strength or Dexterity and to Constitution, but otherwise your needs will be determined by your specific build. Intelligence and Charisma both make fine dump stats for the Fighter, but watch out for Wisdom Flaws, as your Will saves are one of your biggest weaknesses.

For melee builds, look for high Ancestry hit points, damage resistances, and other options to improve your durability. You’re likely going to draw a lot of attacks, and dying is suboptimal.

Racial access to Uncommon and/or Advanced weapons can be very effective, often adding an additional useful property to a comparable Martial weapon. Fighters are the only class which is proficient in Advanced weapons by default, but they’re one step behind in proficiency unless you spend a feat on Advanced Weapon Training. A 1st-level Ancestry Feat is a much easier cost than a 6th-level class feat, and it also means that you can use your cool toy at level 1 without worrying about losing +2 to your attack bonus. However, remember that not all Advanced weapons are good. In this context, Advanced often means “complicated”, not “better.”

Innate Spellcasting may offer some useful options, but fighters generally can’t use offensive spells to any great effect. Buffs, defenses like the Shield cantrip, and utility options are your best bet.

Table of Contents


RPGBOT uses the color coding scheme which has become common among Pathfinder build handbooks.

  • Red: Bad, useless options, or options which are extremely situational. Nearly never useful.
  • Orange: OK options, or useful options that only apply in rare circumstances. Useful sometimes.
  • Green: Good options. Useful often.
  • Blue: Fantastic options, often essential to the function of your character. Useful very frequently.


Dwarf (PC1)

Perfect attributes, several appealing Heritages, the maximum hit points from your Ancestry, numerous excellent feats for martial characters, a free Clan Dagger. Dwarves are slower than most Ancestries, unfortunately, but Unburdened Iron will put you at the same speed as any other Ancestry in heavy armor.

Elf (PC1)

The lowest possible hit points from your Ancestry and a Constitution Flaw. The Elf’s Ancestry Feats focus mostly on magic and on skills, neither of which are a stron point for the Fighter. There are some gems like Elf Step, but not enough to make this great. You might think “elf archer fighter”, but there’s nothing here that makes elves better at using a bow except for their Dexterity Boost.

Gnome (PC1)

A Strength flaw will predispose you to Dexterity-based builds, but you may still prefer to take the Alternate Ancestry Boosts rather than suffering the constant penalty to weapon damage with melee weapons or Propulsion ranged weapons. Many of the Gnome’s Heritage options are great: Fey-Touched can get you the Shield cantrip, Sensate Gnome gives you a way to handle hidden and invisible foes, and Umbral Gnome gets you Darkvision. Gnome Weapon Familiarity makes the excellent Gnome Flickmace a Martial weapon, and the Fortuitous Shift feat chain provides an excellet defensive option.

Goblin (PC1)

The Attributes are okay for a Dexterity-based build that likes to use Demoralize or Feint, but the Wisdom Flaw makes me nervous, so you might take the Alternate Ancestry Boosts. You have several great Heritage options include Charhide Goblin, Snow Goblin, and Unbreakable Goblin. Unfortunately, there aren’t a ton of great feat options for a durable front-line character like the Fighter and there are none to support a ranged Fighter. The Unbreakable Goblin feat chain is your best bet.

Halfling (CRB)

Good Attributes, but the Strength Flaw will mean losing damage on most of the Fighter’s appealing weapons, and 6 Ancestry hp is rough for melee builds. Halfling Weapon Familiarity is fine, but there are no Advanced Halfling weapons. Filcher’s Fork is cool, but 1d4 damage is going to hurt even with frequent crits and Deadl d6, and slings are bad. The Halfling Luck feat chain and Cultural Adaptability are great feat options.

Human (PC1)

Fantastic, versatile, and plenty of options that nicely complement the Fighter right from level 1. General Training, Natural Ambition, and Unconventional Weaponry are all fantastic options.

Leshy (PC1) (Uncommon)

The Attributes work very well for the Fighter, but not enough appealing feats to get you to level 20. A Versatile Heritage is a great addition.

Orc (APG)

Orcs are at their best as a durable front-line martial character, and that’s perfect for the Fighter. The Battle-Ready and Hold-Scarred heritages are easy fits. Feats like Orc Ferocity, Orc Superstituion, Orc Weapon Familiarity, and any feats in those chains are great choices.

Versatile Heritages

Aiuvarin (PC1)

Access to Elf Ancestry Feats without the 6 hp and Constitution Flaw. There aren’t many great Elf Ancestry Feats for the Fighter, but if your Ancestry can fill most of your feat slots, Aiuvarin can be a good addition.

Ardande Geniekin (RoE) (Uncommon)

Ambersoul, Planar Sidestep, and Wood Ward provide some interesting defensive options.

Changeling (PC1) (Uncommon)

The Changeling’s feats mostly center on the Deception skill, unarmed strikes with claws, and Innate Spellcasting. Fighters are not especially good at any of those things.

Dromaar (PC1)

The Orc’s Ancestry Feats are excellent for the Fighter, so the Dromaar is an easy addition to any Ancestry with unappealing Heritage options.

Nephilim (PC1) (Uncommon)

Divine Wings, Grimspawn, Pitborn, Nephilim Resistance, Nimble Hooves are all good. Three of those are Lineage feats, so you can only pick 1 at 1st level, but this still gives you enough options to easily fit alongside any Ancestry without locking you into a specific feat chain.

Talos Geniekin (RoE) (Uncommon)

Reflective Defense, Planar Sidestep, and Metallic Skin provide some good defensive options.

Legacy Ancestries

Anadi (ME) (Rare)

Mediocre attributes, few good feat options for the Fighter, and no appealing Heritage options. Anadi are at their best when built around fighting unarmed, and the Fighter has few options which make that effective.

Android (AG) (Rare)

The Attributes are an unusual mix for the Fighter, but an Intelligence Boost certainly won’t hurt you. The Nanite Surge feat chain is excellent, and you can get good defensive options from Emotionless and Inocculation Subroutine, plus healing options from Repair Module and Revivofocaton Protocol.

Automaton (GG) (Rare)

A ton of great feat options, and the Enhancement mechanic is really good. The Heritage options aren’t fantastic, but Mage Automaton can get you something like Shield or Eat Fire, and Warrior Automaton is interesting if you like to Grapple enemies.

Azarketi (ACLO / AG) (Uncommon)

Decent Attributes, but poor Ancestry Feat and Heritage options unless your campaign is heavily aquatic.

Catfolk (APG) (Uncommon)

Good Attributes if you want to use Demoralize or Feint, but you might take the Alternate Ancestry Boosts if you don’t want a Wisdom Flaw. Your Heritage options aren’t amazing, but Hunting Catfolk is a good choice. The Catfolk Luck feat chain is an easy go-to option, and Catfolk Weapon Familiarity gets you access to the Claw Blade, which is great for two-weapon fighting, as well as the Whip Claw, which is a Gnome Flickmace with Finesse and Slashing damage.

Conrasu (ME) (Rare)

Perfect Attributes. The Heritage options aren’t great, so consider a Versatile Heritage if possible. Ceremony of Protection and Ceremony of Fortitication provides a powerful defensive option replacing a shield without the need to hold, enhance, and maintain a shield. Ceremony of Aeon’s Guidance can get you some buff spells. Ceremony of Growth gets the benefits of Enlarge with the ability to turn it on or off at will. Conrasu Weapon Familiarity gets you access to the Buugeng, a passable weapon for two-weapon fighting, as well as the Taw Launcher, which is a powerful weapon similar to crossbow.

Fetchling (AG) (Uncommon)

Very little here that appeals to the Fighter.

Fleshwarp (AG) (Rare)

The Fleshwarp’s feats are mostly focused on using unarmed strikes and innate spellcasting, neither of which are great options for the Fighter. There are a few good options like Gaping Flesh, but not enough.

Ghoran (IL) (Rare)

The Thorned Rose Heritage is the high point of the entire Ancestry. Most of the feats involve natural weapons or innate spellcasting. The Ancient Memories feat chain is decent, but not enough.

Gnoll (ME) (Uncommon)

The Attributes are an unusual mix for the Fighter, but an Intelligence Boost certainly won’t hurt you. The Great Gnoll Heritage is an easy choice for melee builds, and Sensitive Nose is a fantastic feat, but there are no other feats here which work well for a typical Fighter.

Goloma (ME) (Rare)

Essentially no appealing Ancestry Feats.

Grippli (ME) (Uncommon)

The Grippli offers some interesting options. The Strength Flaws may be a problem, especially since very little about the Gripply encourages Dexterity. Poisonhide Grippli is your easiest Heritage option, offering a great countermeasure when you’re hit. Grippli Weapon Familiarity offers access to the Adze and Hand Adze, both of which are decent, making some trades compared to the Greataxe and the Hatchet. Other feat options include using your turn to Disarm or Trip enemies, wall jumping off of enemies to Shove or Trip them, and at high levels Envenomed Edge lets you inflict Persistent Damage on every weapon attack or unarmed strike.

Hobgoblin (CG) (Uncommon)

Decent Attributes, but the Wisdom Flaw may cause you trouble, and the Intelligence Boost may not be worth that cost, so take the Alternate Ancestry Boosts. Elfbane, Smokeworker, and Steelskin are all good Heritage options. Hobgoblin Weapon Familiarity isn’t great since the Breaching weapon property isn’t especially useful. Runtsage, Pride in Arms, Squad Tactics, Cantorian Restoration, and Rallying Cry are all great feat options.

Combining the Fighter’s Intimidating Strike and the Hobgoblin’s Remorseless Lash is stunningly effective and incredibly easy. Keep an enemy Frightened 1 for the entire fight with no save. Stop using Intimidating Strike in favor of Demoralize and Agonizing Rebuke at level 5 and you add free Mental damage every turn which scales when you hit Master and Legendary in Intimidation.

Kashrishi (IL) (Rare)

Good Attributes and Empathic Sense is a good imprecise sense. Unfortunately, the Ancestry Feat options are poor. There are a few gems like Emotional Partitions, but most focus on Innate Spellcasting and fighting with the Kashrishi’s horns.

Kitsune (AG) (Uncommon)

Nothing here appeals to the Fighter.

Kobold (APG) (Uncommon)

6 Ancestry hit points and a Constitution Flaw, so definitely take the Alternate Ancestry Boosts. Dragonscaled, Spellscale, and Venomtail are all good Heritage options. There are a ton of great feat options. Cringe is great defensively. Kobold Breath is great for crowds. Winglets will get you the ability to fly, but it does take 3 feats before it’s real flight. Avoid Kobold Weapon Familiarity; it’s not helpful for the Fighter.

Lizardfolk (CG) (Uncommon)

Perfect Attributes, but not a ton of great feat options. You can get both Climb and Swim speeds, plus a few oddbal options like Lighnting Tongue and Terrain Advantage.

Nagaji (IL) (Uncommon)

Great Attributes, but since Nagaji only get two Boosts you can take the Alternate Ancestry Boosts without losing anything. Venomshield Nagaji gets you poison resistance. You can get a Swim speed, Scent, Serpentcoil Slam to ground flying enemies, and Disruptive Stare to weaken enemy spellcasters.

Poppet (GB) (Rare)

Low hp from your Ancestry and Vulnerability to fire. None of the Heritage options appeal to the Fighter, so if you can get a Versatile Heritage which provides Resistance to fire, you’ll be in good shape. For feats, look at Wash Out, Histrionic Injury, Sealed Popper, Swimming Poppet, Scaling Poppet, Reanimating Spark, and Soaring Poppet.

Ratfolk (APG) (Uncommon)

A Strength flaw will predispose you to Dexterity-based builds, but you may still prefer to take the Alternate Ancestry Boosts rather than suffering the constant penalty to weapon damage with melee weapons or Propulsion ranged weapons. Longsnout Rat and Snow Rat are good Heritage options. Unfortunately, Cornered Fury is the only feat which appeals to the Fighter, and one feat definitely isn’t enough.

Shisk (ME) (Rare)

Poor Attributes for the Fighter, so take the Alternate Ancestry Boosts. Quillcoat Shisk provides a great retaliatory option which you can buff with Renewing Quills, and Spellkeeper Shisk can get you cantrips like Eat Fire and Shield. Unfortunately, the feat options aren’t great. Inured to the Heat provides some fire resistance, though it doesn’t scale. Delver can get you a burrow speed, which is incredibly rare for PCs. Fountain of Secrets would be a great feat on a character more dependent on Intelligence.

Shoony PF #153 (Rare)

6 hp from your Ancestry and a Constitution Flaw are a hard start, so definitely take the Alternate Ancestry Boosts. Shoony get very feat feats, especially at high levels, so a Versatile Heritages are a great addition. If you don’t go that route, Bloodhound Shoony and Thickcoat Shoony are great Heritage choices. Among the Shoony’s feats you can get a Swim speed, a Burrow speed, and the ability to Aid an ally’s Will save as a Reaction.

Skeleton (BotD) (Rare)

Great attributes for a Dexterity-based build planning to use Demoralize, and the Alternate Ancestry Boosts work great if you want a Strength-based build. Sturdy Skeleton is your best Heritage option. There are several great feat options including As in Life, So in Death, Collapse, and Skeletal Resistance.

Sprite (AG) (Rare)

Being tiny is a juge problem for melee builds, which means that you’re either building an archer or taking the Pixie Heritage. Even then, you have 6 hp from your Ancestry and almost no appealing feat options. You can get flight, but it takes 3 feats and you can’t fly permanently until level 17.

Strix (AG) (Rare)

None of the Heritage options are especially good. Strix Vengeance will be constantly useful, and the Fledgling Flight feat chain can get you permanent flight, though it takes 3 feats to get there. Unfortunately, that’s all that the Strix has to offer.

Tengu (APG) (Uncommon)

Tengu Weapon Familiarity can make any Common Advanced sword into a Simple weapon for you. Currently that only covers the Falcata. The Eat Fortune and Soaring Flight feat chains are the only great feat options here, which means that the only Heritage worth consideration is Winged Tengu.

Vanara (IL) (Uncommon)

No appealing options for the Fighter.

Vishkanya (IL) (Rare)

The only appealing thing about the Vishkanya is their Envenom Action, and you can only use it once per day. There doesn’t appear to be a way to get more daily uses.

Legacy Versatile Heritages

Beastkin (AG) (Rare)

Many of the Beastkin’s options are incredibly powerful. Greater Animal Senses for echolocation. Pack Tactics to make enemies Off Guard without needing to flank. Quick Shape+Dire Form to Enlarge yourself as a free action when you roll initiative. Animal Swiftness for permanently flight with only 1 feat when most Ancestries and Versatile Heritages need 2 or 3.

Dhampir (APG) (Uncommon)

The best benefit that the Fighter gains from the Dhampir is Void Healing (Negative Healing prior to the remaster), which is helpful in a campaign where your party includes undead and undead-adjacent characters.

A Dhampir Hobgoblin Fighter can combine the Hobgoblin’s Agonizing Rebuke and the Dhampir’s Feen on Pain to repeatedly generate Temporary Hit Points, which is a powerful combination providing easy damage, a great debuff, and extra durability with no resource restrictions beyond the action economy.

Duskwalker (APG) (Uncommon)

Few appealing feat options. Spirit Strikes can be helpful triggering weaknesses to Vitality Damage (Positive Damage prior to the Remaster) and to Void Damage (Negative Damage prior to the Remaster). Resist Ruin provides rare resistance to Void Damage. Olethros’s Decree and Yamaraj’s Grandeur are exiting offensive options, but they only work once per day, which may not be enough to justify.

Ganzi (AG) (Uncommon)

A damage resistance by defalt from the Versatile Heritage, but randomizing it can make it difficult to build the rest of your character if you’re looking to collect multiple resistances. Alter Resistance significantly improves this, but not until level 13. Glory and Valor! and Arise, ye Worthy! are both great, too.

Ifrit Geniekin (AG) (Uncommon)

Fire resistance is great. If you’re looking at a Heritage which provides fire resistance, this is an upgrade. Cindersoul can help protect from common sources of Persistent Damage. Heatwave offers an easy way to give yourself Concealment, especially if an ally can splash you with a little bit of fire damage, such as from an alchemical bomb. Noble Resolve helps compensate for relatively low Will saves. Planar Sidestep provides a powerful defensive option. Radiant Brust and Blazing Aura provide powerful offensive effects once per day.

Oread Geniekin (AG) (Uncommon)

Fortify Shield is cool, but once per day isn’t enough to make it good. Treacherous Earth is a great way to create difficult terrain, especially if you take Steady on Stone so that you can ignore it. Earthsense gets you Tremorsense, which is great. One with Earth can get you a Burrow speed. Planar Sidestep is a great defensive option.

Reflection (DA) (Rare)

This is an easy addition to any Ancestry. Mirror-Risen is a good way to mitigate a big hit. Warped Reflection is an incredibly powerful debuff easily replacing Demoralize, though the once per minute cooldown does prevent you from targeting multiple creatures. Mistaken Idendity is a massively powerful defensive option to make up for your relatively poor Will saves. Warp Likeness provides another great debuff.

Suli Geniekin Geniekin (AG) (Uncommon)

Elemental Bulwark is excellent, providing broad protection from several types of energy damage at the cost of your Reaction, and you can upgrade it with Improved Elemental Bulwark. Unfortunately, those are the only great feat options here. If you just need a couple more Ancestry Feats, this could be a good option on an Ancestry that has few good feat options.

Sylph Geniekin (AG) (Uncommon)

Fumesoul can get you poison resistance, which is an easy upgrade if you were considering a Heritage which provides the same benefit like Strong-blood Dwarf. Stormsoul can get you lightning resistance, though I would go for Fumesoul first, given the choice between the two. Several feats grant skill feats related to jumping, which is neat, but not essential. Mor euseful: Wings of Air and Eternal Wings let you fly. As with other Geniekin, Planar Sidestep is a great defensive option.

Smokesoul combined with the smoke effect from Eat Fire is a tempting way to defend yourself in combat. However, typically you want to draw attacks away from your allies, and Smokesoul doesn’t let you see through your own smoke cloud. Cloud Gazer lets you see through fog, mist, and clouds, but unlike Smokesoul it omits smoke from the list. You’ll want to use Airy Step if you go this route, but Eat Fire will mostly suffice until you reach level 13.

Undine Geniekin (AG) (Uncommon)

A swim speed and Amhibious by default, which is great in an aquatic campaign, but otherwise might be useless. Brinesoul is an excellent counterattack. Rimesoul can get you resistance to cold damage. At high levels Planar Sideste pand Tidal Shield provide some useful defensive options. Overall this isn’t a terrible choice, but you do lose some of the power budget to the amphibious stuff.

Mistsoul combined with the smoke effect from Eat Fire is a tempting way to defend yourself in combat. However, you typically want to draw attacks away from your allies, and Mistsoul doesn’t let you see through your own smoke cloud. The same combo is easier for the Sylph, but they do face similar challenges.