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You are not wrong, this build does not do what it claims to do.
You can scribe scrolls into your spellbook, it is in the Magic chapter. It is an entirely normal and frankly fairly expected part of play for characters limited by such mechanics to go off and find new spells.
Can you really rely on Dispel Magic? It seems that I miss that caster level check all the time.
It is a sort of catch all in case you don't happen to have just the right thing. Personally I like to have scrolls of the common removal effects, remove fear, sickness, paralysis, delay poison, suppress charms and compulsions, potion of remove blindness. None of them have much effect based on caster level so minimum CL has very little impact.
Kazumetsa Raijin wrote:
So based off of everyone's responses... It comes down to AC being just as useful as any other defensive stat in the game.
I am not sure how you would come to that conclusion based on the thread. Also AC only protects you against HP damage, your saves protect you from being entirely removed from the fight or turned against your team with a single action. I am not sure how anyone could call them equally important with a straight face.
Assuming you want to avoid paragon surge cheese I would go with:
Sorcerer: Human for lots of extra spells known, specialised in battlefield control conjurations. Persistent spell combined with grease, create pit, glitterdust, aqueous orb etc. Later on dazing spell combined with things like ice spears, acid pit etc. Have a summon or two to combine with the bard.
Oracle: One of a couple of options. For the caster Oracle then an illusion focused heavens oracle making extensive use of colour spray, eschew melee combat almost entirely to hike up Charisma as high as it will go. Alternatively use something like Lore to auotpass any knowledge checks or Lunar for a full progression animal companion. Focus on evocation and persistent spell for debuffs such as burst of radiance and holy smite and later on dazing flame strike or blade barrier or persistent holy word. Try to be dual-cursed to drop ill omen and misfortune to make sure your control and the sorcerers stick. Later on quicken it. If you want a melee oracle then a standard high strength battle oracle with enough charisma for your spell levels.
Bard: Honestly with the other two you don't really need a team. You don't have that much melee so inspire courage isn't going to give a huge amount. Maybe a front line arcane duellist type.
Paladin: Between the other three the paladin will be largely superfluous so take whatever you want. Probably a mounted archer so he has a chance to contribute something before the entire encounter is controlled to death.
Andrew Christian wrote:
But the thing he's missing is, the nicest guy in the world who's a ton of fun, but roflstomps everything or seems to have that build that makes everyone else's character insignificant in most situations is still not going to be fun to play with.
Playing a turtle is about the opposite of roflstomping anything. Ridiculously high AC combined with terrible offence is a recipe for being ignored.
Your crossblooded sorcerer isn't going to be throwing out metamagic-ed fireballs at level 10. He has access to level 4 spells. That means burning and dazing are out (burning is a possibility with the right trait). Flaring is doable, but the full-round cast time for a metamagic-ed sorcerer spell is really painful.
A level 10 crossblooded sorcerer has level 5 spell slots but no level 5 spells known. They can use those slots for metamagic versions of lower level spells.
Magical Lineage and Wayang Spell Hunter both serve to reduce metamagic costs and also rods exist. It is entirely possible to be throwing dazing fireballs from level 8 if you really want to.
Personally if I want to go down the dazing route then I will skip crossblooded and go full arcane. The familiar for +4 initiative together with an extra +2 DC at level 11 with the Robe of Arcane Heritage are better than doing a bit of extra damage. They also get to remove the cast time delay when you really need to do it.
Dark Immortal wrote:
A 15d6+45 damage fireball is far from simple, it requires a particular type of build mixing admixture wizard, crossblooded sorcerer, caster level boosts, empower spell, intesnified spells and the goblin fire drum.
Evocation can be made effective but it requires a pretty laser like focus on boosting it to relevant levels. Even so your 10d6+45 is still only averaging 80 damage and a simple CR8 opponent has on avergae 100hp. If you go down the evocation route you are better off skipping the damage increase stuff and apply DC boosts, persistent and dazing spell. Leave HP damage to those who do it much more efficiently, clerics, druids and summons.
clear spindle ioun stone in wayfinder in PFS and mind buffering armor outside of pfs--almost totally negate the will saves
In PFS it really doesn't. The spindle only works against evil caster and scenarios quote often have suspiciously neutral casters in them. Also it only provides protection against some charms and compulsions. There are plenty of will saves beyond those. It does nothing to protect you from being blinded by glitterdust, slowed, confused, plane shifted to hell or taken out with blasphemy amongst many others. Tanking wisdom is a terrible idea and hyper focus on AC will end up with the player sitting out of plenty of fights. Even in those fights where their AC does matter they hit like a wet noodle and most enemies will eventually realise they can just walk around the idiotic brick as he is not actually presenting much in the way of threat.
Called and Summoned creatures are totally valid.
I am wholly unfamiliar with psionics but as they are all 3rd party they don't come into things. PF only material.
Slightly off topic: We are all assuming the Walls of Force making up his giant Forcecube of a lair aren't destroyed by the lava, correct? Should would be? Even subtracting its full hardness is it still not taking some 40 hp damage per round from being submerged (are we taking the weapons and supernatural text a bit too far if we consider the lava to be neither)? This tactic would have worked in earlier editions because the Wall of Force had neither hardness nor hit points to worry about, it was immune to all damage, PF changed this. (sorry andreww but it just occurred to me that this might be an issue with the encounter design at least within PF rules)
That is an excellent point and one that I had not considered. Hmm, that probably means he has to change his set up a bit. He probably switches his sanctum to a permanent widened Prismatic Sphere. Staff of the Master allows him to widen it. That may give the Cave Druid a bit more of an issue but those using Disjunction are not affected.
How are you getting a 34 dex and wisdom?
You might have better luck with a monk1/druid19 wearing wild full plate while wildshaped into an air elemental and arguably getting the full benefit of their dex and wis as they don't count as wearing the armour while wildshaped. Its a bit skeevy on the rules side of things.
Alternatively a lore or primal oracle dip into sorcerer combined with shapechange and seamantle can easily reach the mid 60's.
They can but they do so at the cost of their combat capability. Witches, Wizards and Sage Sorcerers happily start with a 20, sink all of their level ups into Int and buy the best Int boosting headband they can find. Can you really say the same is likely for a rogue?
Alchemists are Int primary partial casters right. The student of philosophy trait turns him and any other Int based class into a better face than pretty much any rogue will ever be. It really is quite obscene.
It very much depends on the DC you are getting on Ball Lightning. I would go with Arcane bloodline for the extra +2 for School Power and make sure to use Persistent Dazing Ball Lightning. I would apply one with a Rod or Staff of the Master Necromancer to allow you to Heighten it a bit as well to squeeze some more DC's. I might be inclined to use Time Stop after the Quickened Disjunction in order to drop multiple dazing Balls on him.
Instead of Form of the Dragon I would use Shapechange. FoTD duration is really really short, Shapechange is 10 minutes/level. Your key issue is winning initiative. I am not sure if the Duelling Cestus works as you may have to be wielding it in the same way as the defending property got the shaft. You have an excellent chance of winning initiative between +15 or so from Noble Scion, 2 from Reactionary and 4 from a familiar.
Overall not a bad way of doing it. His reflex defence is clearly his weak spot and Dazing Spell exploits it quite effectively. Dazing him does however trigger his Contingency so you really need to get rid of it. You might have to risk blowing the walls then hitting the dragon with a disjunction/dazing ball lightning in round 1. The odds of success are good though assuming a ball lightning DC somewhere around 36. Add in a limited wish to reduce his first save by 7 as well.
1)Selective magic trait that prohibits anybody other than the dragon from using teleportation of any kind.
It is a variant on forbiddance, hardly unusual for a high level caster to achieve.
2)Using wish to create an effect other than what the spell was intended (I'm looking at the wall of force used horizontally)
You think that wish cant reshape a wall of force? You must have a very limited imagination.
3)Destroying a force wall, even when silenced, alerts him. Even while asleep.
He wont hear the sound of the wall being broken, he *may* notice the change in the internal conditions of his sanctum even while asleep. Being asleep imposes a -10 penalty on his +52 perception.
4)He's a member of a noble family (scion of war)*
The noble family bit is entirely fluff text attached to the feat. It is not actually a requirement and is therefore irrelevant.
5)I'll give you this one, it might be obvious, but when Prismatic Sphere states "When you're inside it, however, the sphere blocks any attempt to project something through the sphere (including spells)", wouldn't that remove the shield other effect as soon as he leaves the buff bubble?
Spells only require line of effect at the point at which they are cast.
6)When you say "He arguably has 4 limbs capable of carrying things" after discussing that both claws are holding rods... Are you suggesting that he casts spells with his wings, his toes, or that he's carrying coconuts under his dorsal guiding feathers?
I am suggesting that dragons have talons on their front and rear legs both of which are capable of carrying things but the glove of storing idea works much better.
David Bowles wrote:
I would just like to point out that this is pretty terrible railroading adventure writing which, especially at high tiers, fails utterly to take into account the abilities which PC's actually bring to the table.
Lincoln Hills wrote:
It does but the problem is that large numbers of enemies use natural attacks which are all made at the same attack bonus. If your game has a lot of class level based NPC's then AC will have more value than if you fight a lot of bestiary opponents.
Smite is great but it is single target. High level combats generally need to have lots of enemies to be any sort of threat to a well prepared high level group.
It's not like this happens often. But by RAW, the guards believes. And I have talked to one player with such kind of build before. I am perfectly fine with him bluffing, as long as it's within boundaries that don't ruin the whole scene for everyone else. And if he's being creative and not being a jerk, that actually adds a lot of fun to the scene.
Actually Bluff contains the following line which leaves an awful lot of room for GM adjudications:
Note that some lies are so improbable that it is impossible to convince anyone that they are true (subject to GM discretion).
Getting 60+ AC by level 20 (which means nearly all published creatures need a natural 20 to hit you) or being an effective tank at all levels IS TRIVIAL.
60+ at level 20 is really pushing it except for certain specialised caster, fighter or monk builds. It is even more difficult if you are melee and want to keep your damage relevant as you need to be using a two handed weapon. Your average level 20 Paladin is probably looking at:
10base +14mithril full plate +5defelction +5natural +1insight +1luck +3dex for 39. If they use a shield you are looking at 46, still far and away from 60.
Your average 20 wizard might be using +8 bracers instead of full plate but gets to add a +5 mithril buckler and maybe 6 from Dex for 44.
Certainly there are ways to increase these but 60+AC is definitely unusual. I can certainly do it with, say, a Lore Oracle, but I wouldn't expect most characters to be regularly running with 60+.
Orfamay Quest wrote:
Adding Persistent Spell is hardly "very specialised".
Orfamay Quest wrote:
On average, monsters will make their saves half the time, so the average damage goes down (to 75% of the numbers). As the opposition advances in level, the saving throws get better against a static target.
This is really not my experience. AS PC's gain levels it becomes easier to land your spells as you have more options which target a wider array of saves and then you start adding things like Persistent into the mix. It is actually fairly easy nowadays to have a set up at about level 10 where you can reliably target any save with an 80%+ chance of success.
To hear people talk they must seem to think that offensive spells and buffs aren' resources used up but healing is resources used up.
No but it is far more efficient to use a single spell to control multiple enemies in an encounter than to have to keep using multiple healing spells round after round to keep up with the damage from uncontrolled enemies.
I would far rather our cleric neutralised several opponents with a Greater Forbid Action than hold those slots to cast Cure Critical Wounds over and over to keep the front liner up.
Captain Morgan wrote:
While Feeblemind is a great spell for taking out casters, wouldn't it be more reliable to say, target fortitude? I'm sure there must be a good save or die out there for fortitude, and casters tend to be weaker in fortitude than will.
At the early levels blindness is a great caster killer spell. Hard to do much when you cannot target any of your spells. Later on persistent Blindness is horrible. Back Tentacles works well as it doesn't bother with saves and caster CMB tends to be terrible. Baleful Polymorph comes online at level 9/10 and is excellent for taking arcane casters and rogues out of the fight.
Of course not but high level characters have concerns that go beyond a single town or city. The initial set up has Incendius threatening an entire nation. You cannot identify which part of your country he will attack. You can just set up in one place and hope he targets it but you could be waiting a while and lose an awful lot in the meantime. You could set up a series of alerts across major settlements to let you know where he was attacking and teleport there but that is rather more involved. Sending wont be much use as the casting time is too long but you could deploy planar bound allies with greater teleport to alert you.
As has been already mentioned earthquake, demand and gate are all means by which he can be forced from his lair. It is also entirely possibly to remove his defences. The divination block is simply a large scale Private Sanctum and the teleportation block a variant on Forbiddance. Disjunction is a thing after all.
Varisian Tattoo (Abjuration)
Basically use Dispel Magic as your primary means of counterspelling and boost its caster level as much as you can.
If you want to go down the offensive druid spellcasting route then I would not take the monk level at the outset. I would get to around 5th level spells before picking it up for the added protection.
Menhir Savant is an excellent archetype. For race Samsaran is amazing as it lets you plunder the Druid, Paladin, Ranger and Inquisitor spell lists for useful stuff. A Menhir Savant boosting the caster level on their Holy Word spells can be very scary. Same with increasing the potency and duration of long duration buffs.
For feats you obviously want Natural Spell. Improved Initiative is crucial for any save or suck caster. Beyond that you are looking at a mixture of spell focus, sell penetration and metamagic feats. Persistent, Dazing and Quicken Spell are all excellent and they lead very nicely into Spell Perfection. I would also pick up a crafting feat.
Note there is some disagreement about whether or not using Wild enchantment armour and shield in wildshape would remove your Wisdom bonus to AC from the Monk. Check with your GM before bothering to invest in it.
Laiho Vanallo wrote:
also your statement that such a character would do almost no damage is misguided. I currently deal 7d6 point of negative damage at everything around me and heal myself for the same amount each turn, also if I really want to cook people into negative energy cookies I simply use 3 channel charges to deal 14d6 damage in a 20 foot radius of me (while healing myself from the same amount!) I spend most of my feats on things to raise my AC and you are right it's a massive investment and I do get one less spell per level and yes...
Wow, you are doing 7d6 damage per round to anything within 30' of you with a save for half which is around what, DC22-24. That is deeply unimpressive. An average of 24 damage if they fail when even a group of CR8 mooks will have about 100hp each. You can double that by spending three uses of channel out of how many, maybe 12? And you still barely do half the health of a mook in damage. Given what Clerics are actually capable of that is just a bit depressing. God forbid you encounter something which is an actual threat.
The Anylosaurus is pretty much the poster boy for high AC animal companions but it simply exposes the common problem. You can get his AC into very relevant levels but his will and reflex defences are liable to be dire. Failing Will saves often results in being completely taken out of a fight as can failed reflex saves in a world with things like Create Pit and Aqueous Orb. Saves are simply more important than AC as they represent your main defence against being taken out by single events. I would heavily pioritise saves over AC any day of the week.
Also the Karma Prayer Bead is 20k, it is an unlikely purchase by level 10 where it represents nearly a third of your total wealth.
I wouldn't accept it at my table. It is disrespectful to the GM and to the other players. If you are sat at the table you are there to play. If you aren't interested in playing then don't take up the seat which could have gone to someone who was interested. I feel much the same about people who spend a lot of time texting or IM'ing during the game.
Thanks for pointing that out, I didn't know what book the drawbacks are from.
If you want to use material in PFS then you are required to own the source and bring it or a watermarked print out with you to the event.
Do we have as long as we want to prep for the fight, or are we working on a time limit?
As long as you want although the longer you take the more areas he will destroy and/or subjugate.
Also, any reason we don't just wait for him to attack the city and deal with him outside of his lair? (Provided we can do some silly things to prepare for him attacking.)
Mostly because you do not know which city he will strike next and due to mind blank cannot use divinations to determine which it is ahead of time.
I honestly have no idea from a raw perspective. I am going to say no. It can be swam through.
2) If I'm able to watch inside the force walls, can I see where everybody is placed? If unaware of combat, do they move (consider two minutes of time)?
You can see anything other than what is in the Sphere as it is opaque.
3) The force room is 40 feet high. If I hit an upper wall of force with a mage's disjunction (40 feet radius), does the lower collapse?
For simplicities sake lets call it all a single force wall. Destroying it brings the whole thing down.
4) Is possible, given the time, to build something below that room? I mean, something enormous, like as big as the Empire State Building.
You could although it would risk being detected.
5) The dragon has to die? Or be defeated is enough? Like having his soul trapped, or being confined in a demiplane, or sent in a plane where he can't make any trouble.
Defeated would be sufficient but any form of imprisonment needs to be long term. Simply sending him to another plane would not be enough given he can move between planes.
Edit: can't find flight as (su) either ;p. but without his freedom of movement ability he will have to swim out of the lava before he suffocates. At that point he is in the open and can be easily defeated by a squad of regular archers waiting for him on the crater rim.
I am fairly sure that winged creatures have EX flight. He can certainly swim out of the lava. Archers on the rim need to contend with his minions and cannot see through the smoke. He can murder them casually from within the crater with chain lightning or his breath weapon.
Having said that I actually described his lair as an internal cavern with a single entrance which makes it even more difficult for them.
Just wondering, by casting some Earthquakes, like two or three casts, 50 feet below the dragon (in a good point, without hazards), would it collapse? Our buddy would be at least perplexed, and he also need to build (or find, or conquer) another liar.
An earth gliding druid could hammer the area with multiple earthquakes in relative safety which might well drive him from his lair. He could go hunting for the druid though, Limited Wish will let him copy Elemental Body for earth elemental form but if it got dispelled he could be in trouble. He also wouldn't have tremorsense so would be hunting blind.
Mundane Disguise to make me look like Lava, DC - (Ha! I'm level 20, The Erinyes and Vavakia Demons can't hit it with their assumed take 10 for "guarding")
I am fairly sure you cannot disguise yourself as a puddle of lava. Even if you could you rather give yourself away as you fly down. You could easily get around it by earth gliding in earth elemental form from elemental body or shapechange.
Quicken (rod) a Mage's Disjunction to blow the walls of force (at least the top one), the prismatic sphere, all linked spell effects from the planetar, and temporarily suppress of of the dragons items. (swift action)
This I think has a small flaw. The walls block line of effect and the area of the disjunction is determined at the point of casting not after it has taken effect. Time Stop would allow you to drop a couple of disjunctions blowing out the walls and then the sphere/buffs. You probably only get some of his items.
The small problem with this is that it doesn't actually kill him. Fire Immunity is definitely EX and I cannot see anything saying their Flight is SU either. Now you have to fight an angry dragon which is immune to most of your spells.
The Rod only works on single target spells. Mass Suffocation targets 31 people.
Anything that stands a chance against a Beastmass challenge will reek of cheddar...
I completed it with a very straight forward spell perfection using sorcerer. I wasn't even (ab)using Paragon Surge.
Gregory Connolly wrote:
Can we just destroy his lair and laugh as he has to spend money to rebuild and we just have to cast Earthquake to destroy? Why do we have to fight him in his Forcecage anyway?
It is totally an option although Earthquake does have a relatively small area of effect so you may need a few castings. Adding some planar bound elder earth elementals to help collapse the mountain would also be a good idea. That would almost certainly bring him outside into a straight up fight but he will arrive fully buffed, invisible and mind banked.
Fruian Thistlefoot wrote:
That is the nature of the Beastmass Challenges. Can you face situations which are supposed to be dealt with by an entire group on your own. Go ahead and have a look at the first two. The first involved fighting six CR20+ monsters in a row with no chance of resting in between. The second calls on you to complete an entire high level module on your own.