Poor skald hasn't gotten any posts today. I have akready said all I can until the next playtest round, but I am very hopeful.
I believe everyone has said all they can on the matter. The ball is in the Devs' court, and until they hit it back to us, we're kind of left sitting on our thumbs.
Can any of these caster level feats apply to crafting magic items? Like can you make certain weapons and armor much earlier than normal?
That I don't know. It's hard to say whether that's allowed or not, since it goes based off of casting certain spells.
I'd say that abilities which grant a static bonus to Caster Levels (AKA across the board) would constitute such an increase in regards to crafting, but other ones might not, since it only works with the spells you cast.
This topic again...
Offensive Spells can be misleading in their definition, since a spell that target a random area (such as a Wall of Ice impeding an enemy's escape) can't be construed as an Offensive Casting of a spell, since the creature is not in the area or effect of the Wall of Ice spell being cast. )If anything, it's fitting on some spells to be considered Offensive, since some spells only affect humanoids [Charm Person], whereas others affect everything [Dominate Monster].)
Hostile Spells is a better title since it is a spell cast with a harmful intent, not an offensive intent (which could perhaps be nigh harmless). This is exactly what the Invisibility Spell breaks on; spells used in a hostile, harmful manner directly against a creature.
It's important to cite that it must directly involve the creature, otherwise casting a Wall of Ice to imprison an enemy would be considered a hostile spell even though it isn't a spell that has a foe in its area or effect (i.e. trapping said foe inside the Wall of Ice), ergo it wouldn't break invisibility.
Pretty much this. The Raging Song feature is the Skald's defining performance, just like Inspire Courage is the Core Bard's defining performance; replacing it with something that I might as well just be another class for makes the creation of the Skald absolutely pointless. That's what Archetypes are for, and the Skald is a Base Class, not an Archetype.
I think granting rage powers is fine (although group wide superstition scares me a little).
A group wide Superstition buff is extremely powerful, no doubt about it; it makes Save or Suck/Die spells a complete joke, but it does come with drawbacks:
The barbarian gains a +2 morale bonus on saving throws made to resist spells, supernatural abilities, and spell-like abilities. This bonus increases by +1 for every 4 levels the barbarian has attained. While raging, the barbarian cannot be a willing target of any spell and must make saving throws to resist all spells, even those cast by allies.
The first noticable drawback is that those who are under the effects of the Raging Song must always make saving throws against spells, including buffs and healing. Some healing can be done without spells (Witch Hex can, if I remember correctly), though spell healing is the most common form of healing that's readily available for use.
The second noticable drawback is that this is only active while the Bard is doing the performance; once the Bard is silenced, the Performance ends and we can say goodbye to Superstition and whatever Rage Powers the Bard grants.
Another drawback (which many may not notice) is that this is a bonus to Will Saves, and a Morale Bonus at that. Other spells/buffs that give Morale Bonuses to Saves (Heroism comes to mind) does not stack with this bonus. Although this isn't an issue by the end-game (an extra +3/5 by level 20 V.S. Spells/Supernatural is still a great increase), by mid level this can trivialize the usefulness of Heroism regarding Saves increasing.
Being new for the sake of things isn't the issue here. Flavoring stuff to be different from X thematically doesn't change the fact that we're running into redundant stuff mechanically. Giving [random New class] the same exact feature as [random Core class] and calling it their main feature is a silly sell-out for trying to make the class "new" and "different" like Paizo advertises them out to be (aside from spellcasting, which is much more vast, open to playstyles, and player-friendly than any class feature in the game).
The point is not only hypocritical advertising and creation, but also redundancy of mechanics. If I wanted to have an Inspire Courage performance (and not some knockoff which functions exactly the same way), I'd play a Core Bard, not the Skald that the Devs are trying to flesh out.
The Core Bard only makes one mention of a performance that is language-dependant; Suggestion. I am certain there are other performances from other archetypes that may fall under such category, of which are of the same uselessness, since Inspire Courage is practically the only performance a Bard ever needs, period.
But the game isn't built around Mr. I Solo The Game kind of playstyling. There are plot involvements where these other abilities are important, and the Bard covers some of these bases with the other performances. What if the Bard were to try and convince an NPC's Animal Companion to not eat the party Wizard's familiar (or something along those lines)? The only thing is that this problem has never happened to such an important class feature before until now.
As far as I'm concerned, ditching the Language-Dependant feature (who talks Common when they're mad? Wouldn't they just cuss up a storm?) would fix this problem altogether, since it's not like Animal Companions are deaf. (Or are they? If they are, that's a whole separate issue.)
@ MPL: So in other words, they might as well just make this class function exactly like the Core Bard, just maybe call it a Core Bard 2.0, since it actually has the single most important features of the Core Bard, and the single most important features of the Barbarian. Why even bother with a Core Bard now, when the Skald (now Core Bard 2.0) is so much better?
Difference without superiority is key. This is exactly why nobody plays Rogues and everybody plays Ninjas; because Ninjas outshine Rogues in every category: Availability of Talents, better weapon choice, more open playstyle, superior mechanics and features, you name it, it's better. And that's exactly what we're doing with the proposed changes you cite.
Obviously nobody wants to start classes from scratch or make super big changes, and Paizo isn't any different on the subject, but that doesn't mean that for the class to be, well, a class, and not a waste of time, that big things need to happen, old things need to be scrapped up and prepared with something new and improved. Are we at that point? Arguable. Are we getting to that point? Most definitely.
To a point, this is what I was talking about. At the same time, I picture your description of what the class should do be a lot like this guy right here.
There's already a Words of Power mechanic in the game, and we aren't looking to replace it. The idea of Chants isn't a bad thing, but we aren't including the Bardic Performances the Skald should be able to do as well.
Unless of course you're referencing these could be sample Chant Powers, in which case some of them are good; others are extremely powerful given their level acquisition. Hardly any characters, creatures, or abilities give DR/Adamantine at 4th level, and Fast Healing at 1st level is unheard of in Pathfinder (although a 1st level Vigor spell functions as this in 3.X).
In addition, the "Rage Powers" in which the Skald acquires that I substitute Chant Powers for, starts at 3rd level, not 1st level. Raging Song is acquired at 1st level, which is supposed to be the Skald's performance in which the Chant Powers affect. So it should scale as 3/6/9/12/15/18.
@MPLIndustries: Sounds like Inspire Courage 2.0, instead of just hit and damage, it's health and spell DCs as well. Also, that's a big sign of power creep.
How about a Mocking Display Bardic Performance, where enemies make Will Saves (equal to 10 + half Skald level + Charisma modifier) or become infuriated, having a -1 to Hit, AC, and Saves, but a +2 to Damage rolls (that scales as the Skald levels)?
How about instead of Rage Powers (which imply that only the Skald gets them), he gets Chant Powers, features that amplify his current Raging Song (such as increased Area of Effect, applying abilities to those affected as if they had X Rage Power, etc.)?
The class needs to be different, but include elements of both of the classes listed in its hybrid classification.
Inflicting Negative Levels and Ability Drain is an extremely powerful ability to give a PC, especially in the lower levels, and is not something to be taken lightly. He will end up one-shotting everything from level 2-3 and lower, and trivializing several encounters until you get to the mid-high levels.
However, it isn't out of the question, but is not something that should be considered until later in levels (about 6 or 7 is when you start to encounter ability/level drain creatures). It's also important to note that inflicting penalties to modifiers in combat is similar to Ability Drain. There are several spells that accomplish this from Cleric and Wizard spell lists; Wizards even get Enervation as a spell, which drains levels and deal damage.
There is also a sword that gives negative levels on a critical hit, something which he should search for; perhaps as part of a main quest to be his weapon of choice. Being an Elf Wizard (probably Necromancy specialist) would allow proficiency with this, as well as greater spellcasting which accomplishes his goal.
That is where it becomes an issue. Temporary bonuses are ambiguous in what they grant for each statistic, considering they don't function like a Stat Belt or Headband normally do. We then run into arguments such as "I get additional Spell Slots now!" or "I gain more HP!" when they may not be the case.
This 'problem' regarding Performances and Animal Companions has stemmed back with the Core Bard and several of his performances that are also Language Dependant. It is nothing new and there is no point in bringing this up regarding this class because the issue is old and has little bearing on fixing the class itself.
@Scavion: If we try that, we run into the same issue as the Raging Song: playing nice. What kind of bonus is it? Does it stack with other bonuses? Is it considered a temporary bonus? Does the +2 affect that statistic for all creatures, or do those affected choose which stat it goes to? Is it overpowered for such a performance?
The class features need to be simple yet unique. Defining yet primitive. That's a lot of what the Skald is about.
Taku Ooka Nin wrote:
It is and it isn't.
It is in that we've had a boss fight where we've dealt over 1000 damage over the course (about 600 of it went to the Boss).
It isn't in that most of our encounters are generally 6+ rounds in length, and those are some of our lesser encounters.
I do have a lot of trouble increasing Touch AC as a Fighter, and yes, a lot of attacks affect Touch AC. Having a mere 15 at the level we're at makes me prone to getting hurt quite quickly. Sure, I have 3 Dex, 1 Dodge, and 1 Luck, but I'll need more methods to increase it.
In our party of 6 I am one of two Tanks and (mostly) have the highest AC of the group at a whopping 29 at 9th Level. (We don't really have any sort of buffing outside of Heroism, and Heals are scarce, so it's not a shock that it's very low.) This doesn't include Fighting Defensively or Total Defense (32 and 35 AC respectively).
I am a Mobile Fighter and use a Buckler (with a Two-Handed Weapon) and have (Greater) Shield Focus. The GM allowed me to spend a feat that I can retain Buckler AC while making attacks. With all of my current bonuses, my CMD is 32. (Another important note is that I have a base +15 at my highest BAB, +20 with everything active, so hitting won't be as big of an issue as I think it will be.)
My AC isn't as high as it should be (still need +2 Ring, +2 NA Amulet, and increased Enhancement Bonuses for my equipment just off the top of my head), and it will probably be that way for a while, considering my Saves are 11F/7R/6W. However, since a fair portion of what I am missing also applies to CMD, it has me worried about whether or not my AC will be my #1 number. (I believe Fighting Defensively and Total Defense applies to CMD as well.)
But is having a lower AC than CMD a bad thing? I'm given to understand that CMD is more wonky than AC in terms of scaling, and the fact that it's higher does appear to be better than the inverse; but this sort of thinking may lead me to getting hit a lot more than getting locked down, and since I don't have as much HP as the party Barbarian does (the other Tank), it's not something I should encourage.
What is the community's thoughts on this?
Sean K Reynolds wrote:
Being able to accept or decline the buffs during the actual performance is a big feature to implement, and allows more freedom with the class. To prevent cheapskating/metagaming the feature, I'd think to treat it like the Defending weapon property, where all allies who are under the effects may choose to receive the benefits of the Raging Song at the start of their turn, and may not do so at any other point during the turn. Otherwise, it's looking up.
As to how it will "play nice" with all other Rage Class Abilities, it will need more deliberation. I don't think it's an issue to have the benefits of Raging Song stack with other Rage effects, but have it work only at half effectiveness for those already under a Rage effect (minimum of +2 Str/Con and +1 Will Save bonuses). This solves the whole "play nice" issue and still makes it an effective and worthwhile class feature on par with the regular Bard.
I'm not opposed to the Skald having Rage Powers, but if the Raging Song is supposed to grant Rage Powers to those under its effects, I feel calling it Rage Powers doesn't really explain what it does properly, both flavor-wise and mechanics-wise.
My opinion on the matter is that the Skald should have Chant Powers: With this name, we can say that the Raging Song he is influencing has chants of war and battle flowing through his Performance, providing enhanced effects to whatever Performance he is using. An Example Chant Power would be to increase the radius of Raging Song (Resounding Anger) or Dirge of Doom (Echoes of Despair) by 10 feet, or that allies under the effects of Raging Song are affected as if they had [random Rage Power here] (Battle Orders). It opens a unique net feature for the class, but still combines both Barbarian and Bard flavors.
The Skald should be proficient in wearing Medium Armor, but he shouldn't be able to cast in it; at least, not until he gets more proficient and versatile in his spellcasting (make it an extra feature with Spell Kenning, being able to cast in Medium Armor). I also believe that the Skald should have some of the more primary Martial weapon proficiencies (Longsword, Greataxe, etc.) I'm not opposed to Full Martial proficiency, though it's not something the class can't do without.
I am also curious as to whether Skill Points or Hit Dice will be adjusted as well, but so far I am glad there are going to be revisions at least.
Revolving Door Alternate wrote:
So like commune and contact other plane?
RAW, there is no means to detect or know how many hero points a character has. It's honestly an excuse to meta-game. There are several scenarios where any regular PC would not perform an action if not for the benefit of Hero Points. Since there is no way to determine if the PC knows he has Hero Points or anything, it's not only a manner of h4x0rz, but also a sign of meta-gaming. (How does the PC know he has Hero Points? Does he have some surge of heroism going? But there's a spell for that, so what else could it be?)
As far as I'm concerned, the system itself needs more work, and if there are going to be implementations in this disposable optional rule, more rules need to be written into it to be more complete and concise as an optional rule.
I just...man I just don't know how to approach this class TBH.
What do most artists do with their artwork when they can't progress any further with it?
If it's completed, then it is framed and put with his collection.
If it's a mess up, then it is tossed into the garbage can, a new piece of paper is grabbed, and a pencil is drawn with once more.
It's not like the classes can't be re-written. The issue is that we are under the impression that we have to keep the class features set in stone; that we can't add, subtract, divide, or multiply any features into or out of the class. Of course, it isn't our hand guiding the pencil, it's the Devs'.
Even if we think to make a line darker, or add more curve to a certain part, we aren't the hand. We're simply the brain trying to estimate the proportions of a drawing in our imagination. The Devs are the hand. They will create whatever it is they want, and whether the public will respect or view with anticipation the creation they are trying to make depends on their actions alone.
I have said my fair share of what can and should be done. My part of the brain has spoken. Whether the hand will respond or continue its course is what the test of time shows, and only that has the final say in this.
The theme is common, but the levels are different.
The ratio from Flavor to Numbers is what makes the difference, whether it be 60/40, 75/25, etc.; I'd like to think a 50/50 ratio is fair and is something that people strife for, but if we do, then the power struggle ensues. One must be greater. One must be superior and make the bigger difference. Some value Flavor more than Numbers, and vice versa. Hence why we get into these arguments of Flavors V.S. Numbers.
As far as I'm concerned, the Devs are of the former in argument. From what I've seen from their actions, they want to keep the class features they have written as close to them as they possibly can; they aren't really open to rewriting classes entirely if they don't have to, since it's a lot of work and they don't want all that thought and "pure gold" gone to waste. My issue? They are going at it too much from a conservative viewpoint, even if it simply because it all doesn't add up, on both sides of the spectrum. The classes are being playtested, theorycrafted, and if the numbers or the flavor doesn't add up, changes that aren't being implemented, regardless of drasticity, need to occur for the consumers to stay ingratiated and continue to pursue business.
But the issue then stems from the same age old question asked on these boards: "Are the Numbers more important than the Flavor?" The numbers shouldn't be too difficult to figure out for class features, as it's a lesser part of the equation. This doesn't disregard its importance, but simply denotes its involvement ratio in developing the class. The Flavor comprises more of it because it not only helps form the mechanics of the class, but also signal what a feature is supposed to do, and the Numbers are simply a tool to assist with explaining its details.
On the topic of the new classes and their power regarding the numbers, it's obvious that the Devs are making these into Hybrid Classes; that is, a character build essentially comprised of 2 separate classes, when they designed this game to actually discourage multi-classing, due to the decreased effectiveness in character performance.
So of course these classes are going to be weaker; because they're designed like the same thing they lessened when they published Pathfinder. Who plays full-level multi-classes? Most are 1 or 2 level dips at best.
What they need to do is make them their own unique classes; this doesn't mean elements of what classes they are combined with aren't important, but that they shouldn't be taken so directly from the classes they are comprised of. For example, a Skald's Raging Song should not function exactly like the Rage class feature; it should have similar mechanics (+2 Str/Con, +1 Will Saves, scaling) to show its resemblance, but it needs its specific differences to make the class feature successful and have its own feel, and it needs to do so on a level unlike any other.
The Devs really need to think back and remember: What made the Gunslinger so successful? Its own niche of abilities and weapons and features. What about the Witch, Oracle, Cavalier, Inquisitor, and Alchemist? Same thing; some features are obviously quite similar, but there are several very different, very defining features that made them successful and fun to play. The fact that we're essentially re-hashing the same stuff because people wanted a better 'multi-classing' feel isn't going to sell because it's not anything new or better or cool; it's just a weaker, more silly version of two good classes that already exist.
One of the best analogies that compares playtesting in contrast to theorycrafting is World War II and the Germans.
In the sense of theorycraft, the Axis could have easily won that war with their numbers and stategic maneuvering that they could have done with the analyzation of the numbers. But that's all theorycrafting for Pathfinder contains; numbers and equations (1 Time Stop + 20 Delayed Blast Fireballs = Automatic Death, yay!). There is also the universal understanding about theories being mostly true, but not true in all cases. That's why they're called thoeries, which is a major part of the term theorycrafting.
Suppositions and Estimations lack the absolution the Devs need to make a class right. The difference between Thoughts (of Theorycrafting) and Knowledge (of Playtesting) is accuracy. It doesn't contain the instinct of what a player would do in situation X or encounter Y with their chosen build, the same way the numbers don't factor in troop morale, expectations, etc. in the elements of World War II, just like playtesing does.
Expanding on my WWII analogy, if we went by the numbers, we'd all be Nazis or dead with the Jewish people. It's a good thing we're not all Nazis (or dead), otherwise numbers would be the only thing that matters, and it takes a fair portion of fun out of the game.
Of course, numbers do have their place, quantifying the strength of a class, but at the same time we can't just say numbers are superior to instinct and ideals, the very thing that makes the class what it is. Next thing you know, we turn into robots who care only about numbers with no emotion other than elimination. Doesn't that sound familiar?
It's difficult for the Devs to go in any direction because they want to keep the class as close to how they have it written as they possibly can. In the history of classes being published, it takes a change from editions of the game for a class itself to have any real change to some or all of its mechanics. The Paladin is a prime example of this. Even for classes in development, this same phenomenon rings true. I have posted a fairly elaborate method to make this hybrid into its own unique sense of class, and many others have as well; we even agree on some of the basic constructs (D10 HP, Medium Armor Proficiency, Skills, etc.) but the Devs have only made acknowledgements to adjusting the currently existing mechanics, not implementing or revising currently written mechanics entirely (as I have with several of the Skald's abilities).
I mean, sure, they also (obviously) have a lot on their plate with the other classes, but at the same time it's not like this thread isn't trying to make any strides here. The community has put in some decent feedback, but it takes the Devs to say "Okay, we'll do this," or "Alright, that will be revised in the published version," for this to get anywhere, and until they agree on anything (which chances are, won't come from us giving suggestions), the Skald will be stuck in this rut.
Diego Rossi wrote:
The bolded parts have gray area and would need more clarification. What qualifies as "unusual abilities"? Is it something that is granted from another strange creature? From a Campaign the character completed? Does an item's properties count as an "other unusual ability"? It's not exactly a defined game term (or terminology that can easily define intent behind its purpose), so its meaning is ambiguous.
In addition, what does it take for something to "specifically bypass that hard cap"? Do we treat it like Death effects, where it has to come right out and say "This is applicable, even with a weapon that has a +10 Enhancement Bonus"? Do we treat it as if an item's abilities have to affect the weapon's bonus? Because the Gloves would still be applicable (RAW, the extra damage applies to attacks the character makes, not the weapons themselves) versus the Rings (RAW, it specifically says it gives the property to your weapon).
@ Blahpers: I've had this similar discussion with my GM on a fight we had. It was our party against a Huge-sized Lightning/Air Elemental. It had an ability that worked exactly like Chain Lightning. Our Barbarian has Witch Hunter, which gives extra damage on creatures with Spell/Spell-Like Abilities. We argued that because it worked like a Spell, it should be a Spell-Like Ability, and the extra damage should apply. The GM said it was a Breath Weapon Supernatural ability, so it wouldn't apply.
It's not much different than the situation described above. You have an item which gives an effect almost identical to a property, but by RAW is not a property and doesn't function as if it were a property (considering the mechanics for it are different from what the property it is supposed to emulate).
The closest thing I can think of without involving custom items that fall firmly into house territory would be class features or spells that add weapon properties to existing weapons, such as arcane pool or an inquisitor's bane ability. How do those work on maxed-out weapons?
Let me clarify something in my opening post: It's not so much a custom item than it is a combination of two separate items. If the name wasn't so obvious, it was meant to combine the Gloves of Dueling with the Deliquescent Gloves. I'll simplify it by removing the Gloves of Dueling from the equation, and stick with the Deliquescent Gloves from Ultimate Equipment.
In regards to your question, the RAW specifically states character abilities and spells that add special weapon properties are included in the "total modified bonus".
However, my question pertains as to whether properties granted by items falls under this equation. By RAW, it doesn't, meaning it could very well increase a weapon's capabilities beyond the +10 Limit the book cites. Perhaps reviewing the Deliquescent Gloves description would shed light on this situation:
Deliquescent Gloves wrote:
Bolded the relevant sentence. The italicized portion seems to imply that the attack functions as if it received the Corrosive Weapon property, not the weapon itself.
I reviewed the Spiritualists' Rings, an item that also grants Weapon Property effects, and found an interesting entry in converse with the Deliquescent Gloves:
Spiritualists' Rings wrote:
Bolded the relevant sentence. The Rings give the Ghost Touch property to the weapon, not to the attack.
With these two cases, which of these would be applicable to a given attack with a +10 weapon? And why/why not?
By RAW, you are not proficient. Here's what the RAW has to say about it:
All characters are proficient with unarmed strikes and any natural weapons they gain from their race. A character who uses a weapon with which he is not proficient takes a –4 penalty on attack rolls with that weapon.
RAW, if the natural weapon does not come from your race (via racial traits), you aren't automatically considered proficient. This does raise to question as to what this natural weapon constitutes in terms of the type of weapon it is. Is it a Simple weapon? A Martial? Perhaps Exotic (THEM BIG BUCKTEETH!)? Because the weapon makes no clarification, we can't really put a proficiency type on it. Since making a Bite is a very simple type of wielding, it's safe to say people proficient with all Simple Weapons (or if you want to make it more difficult with having Buck Teeth and all, Martial proficiency may be required) would be proficient with this Bite Attack.
At the time of the Core Rulebook being created, AFAIK there was no means to get natural attacks outside of your racial traits, so this clause remains unchanged, since the intent would include all natural weapons period.
RAW says no. RAI says yes. YMMV.
A custom item we had in our Evil Campaign was a +2 Bone Dagger which drains a level on each hit (I think there was no Saving Throw on this). However, if the character didn't land a hit to drain a level in 1D4+1 Rounds, it would siphon a level from the wearer as a cost for drawing upon its power, forcing the player to either drop it (and the next person who grabs it gets a level drained), or to take the level drain and deal with it.
Unfortunately with the implementation of us starting the Way of the Wicked campaign, we lost all capabilities of having it. However, when we used it, it was fun and dangerous to use.
I have a FAQ question that could be relevant to the rules.
Let's say I have a custom item, Deliquescent Gloves of Dueling. This gives +2 to existing Weapon Training bonuses, +4 CMD v.s. Disarm, Sunder, and effects causing the loss of grip on a weapon, as well as the ability to keep weapons held while stunned or panicked. It also grants 1D6 Acid Damage on Touch Attacks, and the Corrosive Weapon Property to Manufactured and Natural Weapons used involving the Gloves.
Towards the end-game, I have this amazing +5 Limning Defiant Courageous Ghost Touch weapon.
While wielding this weapon, it should receive the Corrosive Weapon Property. However, the weapon held already has a +10 Base Price Bonus.
Here's what the relevant RAW had to say on the matter:
Weapon Special Abilities wrote:
Some magic weapons have special abilities. Special abilities count as additional bonuses for determining the market value of the item, but do not modify attack or damage bonuses (except where specifically noted). A single weapon cannot have a modified bonus (enhancement bonus plus special ability bonus equivalents, including from character abilities and spells) higher than +10. A weapon with a special ability must also have at least a +1 enhancement bonus. Weapons cannot possess the same special ability more than once.
I am not sure if the intent is that a +10 Base Price Bonus is the highest you can have on a weapon period, or if that's the highest you can have on a weapon infused with spells and character abilities that grant properties, as it cites via example. RAW, it says the latter, but it doesn't make any mention of items granting properties would fall under the equation it lists.
For this case, would the Corrosive property for this weapon (given via the Gloves) stack with all other properties currently on the weapon, or is it just hopeful thinking/munchkining on my part? (I don't have an actual character that does this, but is just something I thought about when glancing through items.)
To be honest, one of the few times a Will Save isn't devastating is with Inflict/Cure Spells, and Channel Energy.
In every other case? Get a Mind Shield spell active on you at all times, and just in case, get a Cap of the Freethinker. Rolling Twice on Mind-Affecting Effects and taking the better result of the two? Can't blame bad rolls on that one as much as you'd like to.
I have read through the Skald and I have my input as to how I believe the Class should work. Obviously many people will have their opinions, and this is simply my own:
Hit Points: I understand a Skald is not supposed to replicate a Barbarian; they have Barbarian elements, but they themselves aren't Barbarians. However, they should not be as weak as Bards either, and if they want to have any chance of surviving in the Front Lines (because an actual Bard wouldn't dare try), they should have D10 Hit Points.
Skill Points: Although a Skald should not be as good as a Bard in Skill Points, they should be better than a Barbarian's 4 Skill Points. I would have them split the difference (5 Skill Points); not only does it give this class a unique feel (what other class will have 5 Skill Points to start for each level?), but it also directly shows the hybrid formation that the Skald is supposed to emulate; not as good as a regular Bard, but better than a Barbarian.
Proficiencies: If a Skald is supposed to be an enthusiast of combat, he should have more know-how as to wielding weapons and armor of the legendary heroes he praises. I propose that he have more proficiency in weapons (could make it all Martial Proficiency weaponry), and the ability to use Medium Armor. The Skald can still suffer Arcane Spell Failure with the use of Medium Armor, however.
Raging Song: This is the big one; I understand this is supposed to be their major defining feature, just like how Rage is the defining feature for Barbarians, but there is one problem: compatability. The effects of this song can be cancelled out with several features and spells, and quite easily. For a class feature that is not only supposed to be the most important feature of them, it's very weak and doesn't play nicely with others.
I understand that the bonus scales the same as Rage, and having it stack indefinitely would only make power creep more prevalent, but making it absolutely useless defeats the purpose of having this class feature. My compromise is that the ability should stack with similar effects (such as the actual Rage class feature, or the Rage spell), but its benefits are only half as effective (serving as an amplifier). Its benefits do not fall below +2 Str/Con and +1 Will Save, but its -1 to AC still stacks as normal for penalties. This reduces the power creep it can have in the endgame, but also keeps the class feature useful and effective. In addition, this should be a Mind-Affecting Effect, like the Rage spell is.
Suggested Bardic Performance - Mocking Display: I figure Skalds to be characters who not only fight, but work to rise their brethren and raise their morale for combat; however, it would also be in their favor if they were able to incite rage in their enemies, forcing them to be less effective in combat due to their mind being befuddled by a taunting song, furthering their goal. (And no, we're not talking about the Antagonize feat.)
At 1st Level, the Skald may use their Bardic Performance to incite rage in their enemies. All enemies within 30 feet of the Bardic Performance must make a Will Save (DC is equal to 10 + half the Skald's level + the Skald's Charisma Modifier) or become blinded and befuddled by rage. Foes who fail their Saving Throw suffer a -1 penalty to AC, Attack Rolls, and Saving Throws, but receive a +2 bonus to their Weapon Damage Rolls. These penalties and bonuses increase by 1 and 2, respectively, at 4th level, and every 4 levels thereafter. This performance uses audible or somatic components, chosen by the Skald when they begin this performance. This is a Mind-Affecting Effect. Enemies who are affected by this performance are considered to be under the effects of Rage for spells and abilities that are related to the Rage class feature.
Scribe Scroll: The bonus feat I'd least expect for a Barbarian/Bard character to have, they have? I don't know what kind of flavor we're trying to pull here, but I don't see any regular Skald spending his time with scrolls. He would be reading (or hearing) stories of epic heroes and/or villains to recite with his performances, training in weaponry, etc. If he were to be training with magic, he most certainly wouldn't have a need to write it down as a scroll to use for later unless he was out adventuring, and not all Skalds do that.
My suggestion is that if we are to maintain a bonus feat, I'd sell it with the name of Skald Initiation Training; it would be something along the lines of a Weapon Proficiency Feat (probably an Exotic Weapon, or Martial if we're not giving them full Martial proficiency), Expanded Arcana, Toughness, etc. that the player can choose from, similar to how a Ranger has a set of feats to choose from for their Bonus Feats.
Well-Versed: I believe this ability should be different in terms of overall effect. I would move that this feature be named "Well-Tamed," showing that the Skald can control his feelings (and those around him, if his performances don't obviously point that out); he would receive a +2 to Bardic Performance and Language Dependant saves, Saves v.s. Sonic effects, and +2 to Saves v.s. Enchantment effects. (This +2 to Enchantments could be lowered to only affect the Emotion sub-school if the Enchantment school as a whole is too powerful.)
Rage Powers: If there is one thing that really cripples this feature, it's when it only works with one of the Skald's Bardic Performances (its primary performance, but still). If we want to add diversity to classes, we need to have these Rage Powers changed.
Personally, I think these should work while the Skald is using a Bardic Performance at all, instead of just the one. With that being the case, we could move to rename this feature, and call it "Chant Powers". We can simply say that these Chant Powers only function when the Skald is doing a Bardic Performance. Doing it through this manner, we can then say the Skald has the ability to choose through Rage Powers from the Barbarian class, or have its own special Chant section which includes Chants that affect certain Bardic Performances that the Skald utilizes. (For example, a Chant Power could be allowing the target of a Dirge of Doom performance to become frightened or panicked if the creature is already shaken from another source [whereas without it, such a feature would not be plausible].) This Chant Power which affects a performance that targets enemies could then affect enemies which are under its penalties. Another Chant Power could be Amplified Performance, increasing the radius of a single Performance feature by 10 feet (only stackable once per Performance). It opens a whole new door and direction for this class.
Spell Kenning: While the idea of this is cool, it is really lame to wait until 20th level for this feature to really pay off; after all, hardly any games get to that level, and when they do, a PC feels like they can't grow any stronger until they get the ultimate build/item, and then what are they left with?
I believe this Spell Kenning isn't completely useless, but would serve as the Master Skald capstone (as it technically already does). However, this should be replaced with another feature; with the changes I applied in the General scheme of things, the Skald is proficient in Medium Armor, but cannot cast in it without ASF. With this Spell Kenning Feature, one could be able to do so, and perhaps could be allowed to cast spells that are one level lower than his maximum level that he can cast as if they were affected by the Silent, Still, Piercing, or Lingering Metamagic feat 1/day, and an additional time per day for every 5 levels thereafter. (The Metamagics can be different, but still offers versatility.)
Dirge of Doom: To be honest, I believe the Skald can do without this performance. It's not because of the one I suggested is better, but because it doesn't fit the theme that I envision the skald to emulate. If this were to remain, it should function as a Demoralizing Performance, where the Skald spends 3 of his performance rounds and makes an Intimidate Check (or a Performance in place of Intimidate) to demoralize all within 30 feet of his performance for a set amount of rounds (probably equal to Half his Charisma). Unlike most Performances, this Performance takes a Full-Round Action, and cannot be used in the same round with any other Performance. This requires Audible and Somatic components. This is a Mind-Affecting Effect.
Master Skald: The Capstone; too bad it really only affects the Raging Song performance, though removing the AC penalty, Skill/Action limitation, and Fatigue after-effect isn't bad at all. It's probably one of the better ones I've seen. However, the Spell Kenning is an amazing ability, and having it only pay off at Level 20 should make that as part of the Capstone, functionable 3/day, though spells cast in this manner cannot be affected by my currently-changed Spell Kenning feature.
I'm not sure if my suggestions are worthwhile; some would argue they're borderline overpowered to give to this style of character, but the biggest limitation of this class is action economy and lowered BAB. If he has to spend Standard Actions to start this, Standard Actions to cast that, Swift Actions to enact a performance, etc. he's not going to be able to do all that he can do all at once. He makes a great support role while still being an effective second front-liner (Generic Big Bad Guy is going to have massive penalties to Hit, AC, Saves, while the Skald is going to have increased Strength, Constitution, with both Performances going, thanks to Shadowbard, keeping even a 10 Strength Wizard as a potential competent melee fighter).
I hope my contribution on the matter is helpful in developing this class for the book. :)
Paladin in the party has mounted combat and ranks in ride. Druid in the party can change into a dire tiger, and typically stays in that form through most encounters. Is there any reason why the paladin can't ride the druid like a mount? If he does, how do those mechanics work?
To be honest, it's a very gray area. Mounts are generally defined as Animals or Magical Beasts. In addition, most creatures being treated as mounts would have saddles, barding, etc. to account for the rider, and would be trained for it.
If the Druid has such equipment on while Wildshaped (another issue is if the Wildshaped Druid is considered an Animal/Magical Beast instead of their original race for purposes of effects affecting them), it would be allowed no questions asked. If not, it could be permissible, but not without penalties. Regardless, the Druid PC would be burdened with the Rider, signifying that they can't really cast spells, or if they were, they'd have to make Concentration Checks for Violent Motion and the like.
In addition, there would be penalties to both the Rider and the Druid Mount due to the awkwardness/difficulty to maintain being Mounted Combatants without the proper tools (I'd estimate a -4 for improvisation).
Other than that, should be legal across the board. If the Druid Wildshapes to a Large-sized Animal or Magical Beast for the Medium-sized Paladin, there wouldn't be any problems.
Several people have had different interpretations over the term Munchkin. Although many are similar, not all of them are the same regarding levels and definition.
My definition of Munchkins are players who want to have something do more than what it is intended to do. For example, getting a new item and having it do something that it is written (and obviously intended) not to be able to do.
I have a video example of what I picture a Munchkin to be at a given game table when he gets a new Magic Item and tries to do something with it he shouldn't be doing; I will put it in spoilers as it may contain content you won't want to have around your kids. I am not responsible for wrong viewings of this content:
My Munchkin Interpretation:
Although I did not exactly make this thread as a question, if I were to have a question, it would be what the rest of the community thinks about Munchkins and how they would define them?
Regardless of it saying you can choose the same class twice, why would you? Does choosing the same class twice give you some extra benefit?
No, it doesn't. When you put levels into that class, you get 1 Skill Point, 1 Hit Point, or 1 Racial Bonus (dependant upon the race). Choosing that same class for your second Favored Class, you still only get 1 Skill Point, 1 Hit Point, or 1 Racial Bonus.
The numbers you get as you level regarding Favored Class don't increase at all, it simply allows you to utilize another formula (instead of +1 CMD to 2 set Combat Maneuvers, I can get +1 to my Caster Level when casting spells with the Darkness Descriptor). Instead of it being X for this level, it's Y.
Kazaan's argument is that if it doesn't lose a move action (or even its ability to make a 5-foot step), the creature in question can repeatedly try to move past you (as a move action) until you fail, which essentially involves meaningless rolling of die, and wasting of time (and character resources).
The intent is that the creature is trying to move and as an attack of opportunity you can choose to instead negate the effects of the creature's ability to move with the action they take for that movement. Even if the creature takes a 5-foot or a full movement action, the actions are wasted if the PC is successful in their combat maneuver.
The bolded part isn't too much of a tax considering the power they get with it. Moving while at the same time attacking effectively with a full attack? The Beast Totem line for Barbarians might cost the same amount, and they get a very similar payload. Even with those 5 feats, what else are they going to spend them on that they can't already get? Iron Will, Weapon Focus, Favored Defense, Improved Initiative? Their PC can fit all of that in there, and have one more left over. Oh, and Rangers get Bonus Feats like Fighters (actually, somewhat better than Fighters), so it's not like the class doesn't account for the increased Feat Tax that comes with unorthodox combat styles.
You don't count an ability score increase since it's something the PC would do anyway, so it in no way counts as a tax if it's the way the PC was going to build anyway.
Levels take time and gameplay, this is true, but so do many of the other feats. The Critical Feat chains are a prime example of this. Several others include Dervish Dance feat, Thunder and Fang feat, etc. It's not like the PC can't function before they receive the big payload they work towards, but that they won't be at full capacity until they do.
In addition, monsters and encounters will be built on such a factor (considering the game itself isn't built on people being super-optimized). Let's not even talk about the TWF, Sword&Board, or even TWF Sword&Board taxes, which are a grace in comparison.
Multitalented racial trait says you pick one additional Favored Class in addition to the one you already have.
This doesn't mean you get extra Favored Class Bonuses added into your character as they level up, but only that they have extra options to choose from if they put levels in both Favored Classes.
If anything, a better question would be if you have two of the same type of Favored Class Bonuses in each Favored Class, and choose them as the Favored Class Bonus for each level, would they stack to determine the final results, or would they be calculated separately?
The Bane property on a weapon adds an extra 2D6+2 Damage for each successful hit you make.
Since we are assuming the Spell has a Bane descriptor (which functions identically to the property), option B is the correct answer, as each creature is affected by the spell once. (A Bane Flaming Sphere would be insane, since then it would deal 3D6 + 2D6 + 2 each time a Baned creature fails its Reflex Save...)
Aside from that, if it takes a single Mythic Spell to trivialize a combat, your monsters aren't strong enough, or the spell is just too good. Considering that's a 9th level Character Class dealing that damage per monster, there's no way it's because your creatures are too weak...My suggestion is to throw in some Fiendish creatures (or something with some decent Fire Resists). The 9D8 may be nerfed some by the resistance, but the 2D6+2 can make up for it very easily, meaning the damage would remain about the same.
Anyway, if you still want the PC to feel very powerful, it wouldn't be broken to have the +2 Damage scale per caster level, so if you're still looking to add "the extra juice," that's a fair place to start.
Cato Taldinius wrote:
Instead of the Halfling stabbing at the giant's toes, he's stabbing at his now easier to reach guts and face.
Doesn't sound ridiculous at all when you think about it.
One of the best spells in the game is Haste. It buffs your martials by giving an extra attack, extra movement, extra hit chance, extra AC, and Reflex Saves. Outside of Slow, there is not one spell like it, and its practically the Go-To 3rd Level Spell (besides Fireball maybe).
No other spell of higher level can really duplicate its effects to the level in which the Haste spell itself does, and for it only costing a 3rd Level Spell Slot by the late/end game it becomes a joke.
Our campaign has severely nerfed the Haste spell; all it gives is the extra attack and movement, and it only affects a single target. Later down the road, we'll include a Mass Haste (which affects a number of creatures as the spell originally does), and maybe a Greater Haste (which gives the extra numbers as the spell originally does). (We also applied these similar changes to the Slow spell to keep consistency, as that's one of the biggest debuff 3rd level spells.)
Am I the only one who feels that Haste is a very over-powered spell? Have others decided to nerf it, change it, or ban it from their games for these similar reasons?
Cato Taldinius wrote:
Let's remove the creatures themselves for a moment. We have an elevated area at 20 feet tall.
There's another area adjacent to it that's very hilly, leading up to a mountain. It scales at a rate of 10 feet high per 5 feet long.
Anything beyond the 20 foot area we originally cited has an exponential increase of 2 foot height for every 1 foot in length, ergo anything from that direction is considered "higher ground" than the original 20 foot area.
Now let's take this same exact area. We have your Scrag standing at the 20 foot tall area. A PC is charging down from the Mountain, moving down at a rate of 10 feet in height for every 5 foot square he moves. Being adjacent to the Scrag in game mechanics shows that he is still at most 10 feet higher than the Scrag in footing (and at the very least, 2 feet higher).
In game mechanics, creatures who engage in melee combat that are on a higher elevation than their opponent have an easier time to hit the more vulnerable spots of the creature (since they have gravity and position in their favor).
Fair enough. As long as the body is willing and prepared, it is doable. Also, Focuses are an important part for some spells.
As far as I'm concerned, the Marionnette Possession is still active, but just doesn't work. So for the purposes of the creature affected (i.e. the Fighter, as that's the creature who cast the spell), it can control and do things on its own, as if the spell wasn't even cast. But once that AMF goes, the Possession is back online, and the caster's body instantly goes unconscious, and the original creature affected loses nearly all control.
Again, AMF does not Dispel an effect, it only treats it as if the spell wasn't even cast.
Marionette Possession doesn't make any claim as to what happens to the spells. I would infer that since it says you keep your class as you transfer to the creature, you could theoretically cast spells, as the class feature to cast spells transfers with you.
But there remains problems; components. If you try to cast a spell that requires a material component (not costly; any form of material component works), it would not work because the body you possess doesn't have a component pack, ergo no materials, therefore no means to cast the spell.
Subsiding that concern, you would otherwise be correct; the creature you inhabited would be affected by the spells you cited.
*EDIT* And just to clarify for AMF; after the spell is cast, the spellcaster is then reverted to his original body, as the spell's effect is suppressed. If AMF is dispelled or dissipates, the spellcaster would return to inhabiting the original target as normal, though after casting AMF on your BSF, chances are you'd discharge your Marionette Possession spell before it dissipates.
Cato Taldinius wrote:
Except by your situation, the Scrag still has ground to stand on, the example you cite is saying because the ground is 200 feet down, that's where they're currently positioned. Airborne combat doesn't work that way.
It works based on height and position, which in game terms is calculated in 5 foot increments. The Scrag's foothold is 5 feet below where the PC's foothold is. Therefore, the PC has the higher ground (not having to swing at the feet of the Scrag), and thusly it becomes easier to hit the more vulnerable parts of the Scrag's body (i.e. face, eyes, etc.), which the +1 to hit simulates, and not its feet or legs.
By your logic, with both creatures on even ground, the Scrag would get +1 Elevation Bonus to hit the PCs because he's simply taller; that doesn't make sense, considering the rules for larger creatures actually apply penalties to hit, not bonuses. Since there is no such RAW that says or supports this, your theory is wrong, ergo our definition of what constitutes Elevation Bonus is more supported (and thusly more correct).
6+1=7. 7+5=12. I believe US Damage increases every 4 levels, so it makes a difference.
And yes, you can wear both Body items and Armor at the same time. Most Body Slots are robes or other regalia, and it is common to wear such things over armor.
Here is a probable example of wearing a Body item (such as a robe of heraldry) over actual armor (the example uses some heavy combat armor).
To be honest, I am in agreement with the OP to remove access to 7th-9th level spells.
It gives Metamagic Feats more usefulness, firstly, and secondly, it greatly helps Martials still remain relevant to the fight, in comparison to Casters, which by that point can "LOLTime Stop," throw out a bunch of Save or Suck/Die Spells, or "Doesn't Matter, You Can't Hurt Me" spells, and trivialize Martials.
Even removing those spells, the Casters still have spells and abilities that outshine Martials.
It's by E6 (or perhaps E12, somewhere in that region) where being a Martial is a complete joke, where it gets worse, and becomes all about the other Planes, Magic, Spells, etc. being the only means to get anywhere. And since Martials can't just poof it out of thin air...
I'd vote yes. Casters don't have D4 Hit Points anymore, they still have plenty of defensive spells that trivialize Martials like no other (whether by obsoleting the need for Martials with Bodys by Summon spells, or using spells that make the Martials fail to do their job), and it's not like the Casters can't make use of their Spell Slots for Heightened versions of their most common spells, or Maximized Empowered Amplified versions for that matter.
There might have been a thread made about this, but I am lazy and don't know what it's called.
I am theorycrafting of generating characters, and one thing that caught my attention are classes and/or builds that end up lacking in the Caster Level department, such as Paladins, Rangers, Sorcerer/Wizard and Cleric/Oracle hybrids (for Mythic Theurge), etc.
Since I am limited in my searching ability (the best thing that comes to mind is a trait from the APG, which might not work), does anyone know all of the abilities that add to the Caster Level of something? (I am focusing in particular of an across-the-board Caster Level increase, i.e. affects all spells cast, but specific increases may be helpful as well.)
I have a series of Staves infused with divine energy, only usable by those trained in the arts of divine spellcasting. These were made as reference from a popular Nintendo War Strategy game.
Name: Healing Staff
Material: Steel, Azure Orb (+1,000)
Properties: +1, Cleanse I (50), Restoration I, Caster Level 5
Total Price: 7,310 Gold Pieces
Requirements: Divine Spells Class Feature, Level 3, Wisdom or Charisma 15
Description: Upon grasp, this staff emits a sense of renewal from the orb on top of the staff. It flickers between different tones of very dark and light blue. Channeling divine magic into the staff causes the orb to glow a curing power.
Cleanse I: As a standard action, the wielder may activate the power within the staff's orb, healing an adjacent target other than the wielder for half the wielder's caster level plus his primary modifier (Wisdom for Clerics, Charisma for Oracles), costing some of the orb's power. This ability uses 1 charge, and the staff has a total of 50 charges. The amount healed and the wielder's caster level cannot be less than 1 for this healing, but cannot be modified from domain powers or items granting bonus healing. This deals positive energy damage to Undead monsters as a touch attack, and can be reduced by half through a successful will save equal to that of a spell-like ability, the total being 10 plus the weapon modifier plus the wielder's Wisdom or Charisma modifier (wielder's choice). The charges may be refilled, but at the cost of the highest Spell Slot in which the caster may currently cast a Cure Wounds spell. For example, a 3rd Level Oracle must spend a 2nd Level Spell Slot in order to replenish a single charge from the Staff, as the highest Cure spell (s)he may cast is Cure Moderate Wounds.
Restoration I: After the wielder's turn within the round ends, the wielder is automatically healed up to his primary modifier in damage. This is activated automatically, and does not accumulate beyond the wielder's maximum health. Undead monsters are harmed by picking up or touching this staff. Doing so will inflict a total of 1d8 per weapon modifier plus the current/previous wielder's wisdom or charisma bonus (whichever is higher) for each round the Undead carries this item in their possession. The staff does not deal this damage if used to make an attack action against an Undead Creature.
Crafting Requirements: Craft Magic Arms and Armor, Cure Light or Cure Moderate Wounds
Name: Mending Staff
Material: Steel, Sapphire Orb (+3,000)
Properties: +2, Cleanse II (30), Restoration II, Caster Level 9
Total Cost: 19,310 Gold Pieces
Requirements: Divine Spells Class Feature, Level 7, Wisdom or Charisma 17
Description: The staff has a black orb on the top, and the entire design appears to be replicated. Touching the staff causes the orb to luminate to an Azure light, brimming with hope and power.
Cleanse II: As a standard action, the wielder may activate the power within the staff's orb, healing an adjacent target other than the wielder for the wielder's caster level plus his primary modifier (Wisdom for Clerics, Charisma for Oracles), using one charge of the staff. The staff has a total of 30 charges. The amount healed cannot be less than 1, and cannot be modified from domain powers or items granting bonus healing power. This deals positive energy damage to Undead monsters as a touch attack, and can be reduced by half through a successful will save equal to that of a spell-like ability, the total being 10 plus the weapon modifier plus the wielder's wisdom or charisma modifier (wielder's choice). The charges may be refilled, but at the cost of the highest Spell Slot in which the caster may currently cast a Cure Wounds spell. For example, a 9th Level Oracle must spend a 5th Level Spell Slot in order to replenish a single charge from the Staff, as the highest Cure spell (s)he may cast is Heal, or Mass Cure Light Wounds.
Restoration II: After the wielder's turn within the round ends, the wielder is automatically healed up to twice his primary modifier in damage. This is activated automatically and functions normally regardless of how many charges remain in the staff, and does not accumulate beyond the wielder's maximum health. Undead are severely harmed if they try to pick up or touch this staff. Doing so will inflict a total of 1d10 per weapon modifier plus the current/previous wielder's wisdom or charisma bonus (whichever is higher) for each round the Undead carries this item in their possession. The staff does not deal this damage if used to make an attack action against an Undead Creature.
Crafting Requirements: Craft Magic Arms and Armor, Cure Serious or Cure Critical Wounds
Staff of Recovery:
Name: Recovery Staff
Material: Mithril (+2,000), Crystalline Orb (+10,000)
Properties: +3, Cleanse III (5), Restoration III, Undead Destruction, Caster Level 17th
Total Cost: 75,310 Gold Pieces
Requirements: Divine Spells Class Feature, Level 13, Wisdom or Charisma 21
Description: The staff pervades an eerie foreboding to those untrained with the powers of healing, and sends a bolt of lightning to those that do not belong in the living world. Almost acting as a medium, this staff determines what must live; and ultimately, what must die. Upon grasp, the staff appears lighter than normal, even for it being comprised of metal, and the orb at the top is very rigid and cold, but contains immense life force.
Cleanse III: As a standard action, the wielder may activate the power within the staff's orb, healing a target other than the wielder to maximum life, and removes all of the negative effects placed as if a Heal spell was cast upon the target. This costs a large amount of the staff's power. The staff only has 5 charges. This can be used to destroy any target Undead monster as a touch attack unless the target succeeds a will save as if this were cast as a spell-like ability, the total being 10 plus the weapon modifier plus double the wielder's primary modifier (Wisdom for Clerics, Charisma for Oracles). A successful saving throw deals damage as the Heal Spell plus the wielder's primary modifier. The charges may be refilled, but at the cost of the highest Spell Slot in which the caster may currently cast a Cure Wounds spell. For example, a 17th Level Cleric must spend a 9th Level Spell Slot in order to replenish a single charge from the Staff, as the highest Cure spell (s)he may cast is Mass Heal.
Restoration III: After the wielder's turn within the round ends, the wielder is automatically healed up to three times his primary modifier in damage. This is activated automatically and functions normally regardless of how many charges remain in the staff, and does not accumulate beyond the wielder's maximum health.
Undead Destruction: A passive effect that any Undead creature that would come into contact with this weapon, whether through the Cleanse ability, Restoration effect, or even through a physical connection such as disarming/parrying/sundering through unarmed means, must make a will save equal to 10 plus the weapon modifier plus double the current/previous wielder's wisdom modifier. If the target fails, it is instantly destroyed. If the target succeeds, it suffers damage equal to 1d12 per weapon modifier plus the current/previous wielder's wisdom bonus for each round the target is in contact.
Crafting Requirements: Craft Magic Arms and Armor, Mass Heal, Greater Restoration
I then chose to take a stab and make Devil May Cry 4 Nero's Weapons; a Double-Barreled Revolver, and a Durandal (which I decided to say is a specially crafted Bastard Sword).
The Red Queen:
Weapon: Durandal (Bastard Sword)
Name: The Red Queen
Material: Painite (+18,000)
Properties: +3, Painite Power, Keen, Impervious, Exceed System (+75,000)
Total Cost: 93,335 Gold Pieces
Damage: 1d10, 17-20 x3
Exceed System Description: If the wielder has 5 ranks of Knowledge (Engineering), (s)he may switch the lever on the hilt of the Red Queen and rev up the weapon to unleash the Exceed System as a full-round action, spraying a special accelerant oil on the weapon. This flammable liquid can be generated infinitely, but is only applied both internally and externally onto the blade, and upon making an attack, the blade creates a spark from the friction of the air (or the creature [s]he attacks), combusting the fuel generated from the blade, causing attacks to deal an additional 1d8 points of Fire Damage. The accelerating oil applied to the weapon also grants a +2 bonus to hit per attack. The wielder may use this action while staggered, but will only get 2 charges. This action draws attacks of opportunity, and lasts until the wielder attacks an enemy.
These "charges" granted from the Exceed System may be exhausted through a number of ways, whether through regular attacks, attacks of opportunity, or any version of Cleave or Vital Strike. The damage is cumulative, allowing a regular Vital Strike to deal an extra 2d8 Fire Damage, an Improved or Greater Vital Strike or Charge Attack to deal an extra 3d8 Fire Damage, and all versions of Cleave to deal 1d8 Fire Damage to up to three targets the wielder first attacks (3d8 Fire Damage is the maximum amount allotted from activating the Exceed System). However, the bonus to attack does not stack with itself when consolidated on a single target. It does, on the other hand, stack with all other bonuses.
This does not limit the Exceed System to just the 3 attacks in quick succession. In addition, when an attack overcomes the target's AC by 5 or more, the wielder generates a charge for the Exceed System for every 5 AC they overcome on any given attack with this weapon. If the wielder performs a Critical Hit against a target, (s)he generates charges for the Exceed System equal to the weapon's multiplier minus one.
Extra Exceed System charges generated in this manner stack with a partially full gauge (that is, previous charges left over from an action taken to generate 3 charges). The charges generated can immediately be applied to any attack involving this weapon, even while in the middle of a full attack option. The Exceed System cannot go beyond its limit of 3 total charges created, and any charges gained have no effect on the Exceed System's Cooldown.
Once the wielder runs out of charges from the Exceed System, the wielder may not be able to activate the Exceed System as a full round action until one round has elapsed since all charges have been expended. (Example: If the wielder activates the Exceed System on the first round of combat and the wielder exhausts all the charges on the second round, the wielder must wait until the fourth round in order to activate the Exceed System again. This does not detract from the weapon's innate ability to generate the accelerant fluid due to proportional accuracy, or critical striking.)
Painite Power Description: This is an effect generated from the material this weapon was crafted with, increasing the weapon's critical multiplier by 1.
The Blue Rose:
Weapon: Double-Barreled Revolver
Name: The Blue Rose
Material: Painite (+24,000)
Properties: +3, Painite Power, Distance, Limning, Charged Shot (+72,000)
Total Cost: 104,300 Gold Pieces
Damage: 1d8, x5
Charged Shot Description: Unleash the Blue Rose's full potential by charging its strange power. Once charged, the weapon then exerts a force upon its shot, improving the shot's strength and physical capabilities. The charging has 1 of 3 effects, dependent upon the level that is charged:
-Level 1: Deals an additional 1d6 Force damage and target must make a reflex save with the DC equal to the attack roll or become staggered upon its next turn. If the target becomes staggered from another source, or is already staggered, the creature instead becomes dazed. This level takes a move action to charge.
The wielder must say when (s)he will charge the Blue Rose's power. During this time, the wielder cannot attack with the Blue Rose. Once charged to a desired level, (s)he may fire the Blue Rose as a standard action, dealing regular damage plus the charge level effect. All charged shots exhaust both bullet chambers, consuming all ammunition loaded and behaves as if the character made a double shot, but does not incur the penalties involved. If the wielder sheathes or loses possession of the Blue Rose while it is charging for a shot, the weapon loses its charged power.
Painite Power Description: This is an effect generated from the material this weapon was crafted with, increasing the weapon's critical multiplier by 1.
I'll FAQ as well since it doesn't come outright and say it, but I am positive the intent of abilities allowing your weapons to be considered magical for overcoming DR would be applicable in this case as well, due that since being Incorporeal reduces the damage dealt from Magic weapons, one can construe that it's a special form/rule for damage reduction, meaning it's also fair game to say that it overcomes damage reduced from Incorporeal traits as well.
@Bizbag: Not all forms of DR are Supernatural abilities. DR from the Invuln. Rager Barbarian Archetype is an extraordinary ability, and its DR type has only 2 means to bypass it; one is a 16th Level Fighter-Only Feat, the other is an ability that ignores DR altogether (Smite Evil as an example).
Exaggerated? Yes, this was never disputed. Still holds a point? I'd say so, considering that it still means over-optimized characters take the fun out of the game and trivialize it.
Even with a more concise explanation, it's the same thing except not exaggerated, so would your response even be different than what it was? Instead of you saying "I'm exaggerating and griping" you'd just say "I'm griping." Tell me exactly how that would speed along the conversation?
At this rate there might as well not be one. So I'm done with it, as I'm sure you all are.
The thread is in the "General Discussion" forum. If the whole point of the "General Discussion" forum is not to talk about all kinds of things (whether it's complaints or otherwise), the site officiators would've either scrapped it, locked it, or moved it to a thread more appropriate to what it addresses (for your viewpoint, it'd be the Carebear Corner. Also, you ignored the factor that it was an abstract example of optimized PCs making encounters trivial). Since none of these things have been done, its place is valid, ergo your argument of it not being so is invalid. Score 1 for me.
The thread was not created to simply "rehash the same tired old gripes," as I'm sure there aren't very many, if any, of these "same tired old gripes" that involved "spellcasters destroying encounters with a CR of only half their level." In fact, most of them involved a more in-depth view of PC's facing equal or (several) higher level encounters and making a complete joke out of them. Just because I was abstract about my explanation gives you justification to be a jerk about my creation of this thread? Were I more informative about the random situations I placed, you would not be condescending about it? (Good to know for next time.)
Also, that last line sounds exactly like what people on Facebook do. I don't like Facebook for my own reasons, but you don't see me make fun of people who use it. In addition, it's more rude to revive a thread that is dead (in your view, as a beaten horse) than it is to create one. It's not like we're the FBI keeping files on dangerous criminals or organizations or anything...
@ Atarlost: It's stupid in that it shouldn't require it, but lawyer-like reading is a life-long skill that people should learn and understand, since many things in life require such capabilities.
Buying cars, houses, making productions, etc. All requires the use of contracts and specific wording and meanings, which include and expand upon lawyer-like reading. It is stupid in that it is contradictory to its purpose (clarification); but it is not stupid in that splitting hairs is the key between doubt and certainty in the things we do in life, and lawyer-like reading helps with such issues.