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Level 6 Ninja and Samurai in the Arena of Double Doom!


Playtest Results - Round 1

Cheliax

So, normal Arena rules apply but I’m going to also randomize how many foes they will face. On a d3, a 1 will be a single CR6, a 2 will be two CR5s and a 3 will be three CR4s. After each fight the CR’s of the various options will increase by one as normal.

Level 6 Human Ninja “Kato”
Str 20 (17+2racial+1 level)
Dex 14
Con 12
Int 8
Wis 10
Cha 12

Feats
1 Weapon Focus
1b Dodge
3 Power Attack
5 Furious Focus

Ninja Tricks
2 Vanishing Trick
4 Shadow Clone
6 Pressure Points
Ki Points 4

Gear (16,000)
+1 Katana (2335)
+2 Chain Shirt (4250)
Amulet of Natural Armor +1 (2000)
Ring of Protection +1 (2000)
Cloak of Resistance +2 (4000)
Numerous Shuriken

45hp

AC 21 (6armor+2dex+1dodge+1def+1nat)
Touch 14
Flatfooted 17

CMB +9
CMD 22

Fort 5
Ref 9
Will 4

Initiative +2

Katana
+10 d10+8
Katana Power Attack
+10 d10+14

---

Level 1 Fighter/ 5 Samurai Half-Orc Ronin Samurai “Sam”
Str 20 (16+2racial+2belt)
Dex 16 (15+1 level)
Con 14
Int 8
Wis 12
Cha 8

Feats
1 Improved Shield Bash
1b TWF
3 Mounted Combat
4b Quick Draw
5 Double Slice

Resolve 3

Gear (16,000)
+1 Corrosive Katana (8335)
+1 Breastplate (1350)
+1 Spiked Light Steel Shield (1159)
Belt of Strength +2 (4000)
Cloak of Resistance +1 (1000)
Studded Leather Barding for Horse

58hp

AC 22
Touch 13
Flatfooted 19

Fort 8
Ref 6
Will 4 (6 vs fear)

Init +3

Katana
+12/+7 d10+6+d6 acid

Katana & Spiked Shield
+10/+5 d10+6+d6 acid & +9 d4+5
+11/+6 d10+6+d6 acid & +10 d4+5 (mounted vs medium or smaller)

Ride Skill 12

Sam’s Trusty Horse “Horace”
Str 19 (16+3)
Dex 14 (13+1)
Con 15
Int 3 (2+1level)
Wis 12
Cha 6

Feats
1 Dodge
2 Weapon Focus (hooves)
5 Improved Natural Attack (hooves)

HP 30

AC 22 (3armor+2dex+6nat+1dodge)
Touch 13
Flatfooted 19

Fort 6
Ref 6
Will 2

Bite+7 d4+4, 2 hooves+8 d8+4

---

A 2 is rolled so our heroes will face two CR5-Ice Golems

Initiative Order will go Sam, Golems, Kato.
Sam moves around the back of Golem 2, a distance of 65’ to avoid AoOs.

Ice Golem 1 takes a 5’ step and attacks (randomized at first) the horse, Horace. One hit threatens (20,9) and confirms (15). Sam tries a DC 29 Ride check to negate the crit but fails (6). Horace takes 18 damage (12 remains).

Ice Golem 2 takes a 5’ Step and uses Ice Breath. Sam and Horace both make their save taking 3 damage each. (Horace 15, Sam 55).

Kato charges 35’ and power attacks Ice Golem 1. Unfortunately, he can’t get into a flanking position. But soon. Soon. Kato hits (6) and deals 16 damage (37 remains).

Sam 5’ steps to flank Ice Golem 1 and full attacks with sword and shield. Nothing hits the golem, though (1,6,4). Horace rears up and lays into the Golem (8,7,10) hitting with everything. At least one of them is paying attention. Horace deals 9 damage (28 remains).

Ice Golem 1 goes after Kato because of the serious damage dealt to him and hits once (2,20). The threat does not confirm (2). The Golem deals 11 damage (34 remains).

Ice Golem 2 takes a 5’ Step and attacks Kato (randomized again), hitting once (11,8) and dealing 6 damage (28 remains for Kato).

Kato attacks Ice Golem 1 but rolls a 1, missing. I’d like to burn ki to add an extra attack here but I’m not sure it’s legal.

Sam attacks Ice Golem 1 hitting (17,16,7) and dealing 20 damage (8 remains). Horace hits once and deals 7 damage (1 remains). He 5’ steps to set up the flank for Kato on Golem 2.

Golem 1 attacks Sam and hits once (20,3) but cannot confirm (4). Its slam deals 11 damage (47 remains for Sam).

Golem 2 continues to beat at Kato and hits once (14,4) dealing 10 damage (18 remains).

Kato attacks Golem 2 using a Ki point for an extra attack. This fight has lasted too long and it’s wearing on everyone. He still only hits once (1,6). Kato could take lessons from Horace or a tree. He is a depressing Ninja. He deals 24 damage to Golem 2 (29 remains).

Sam swings on Golem 1 to drop it and hits once with his sword (1,16) dropping the construct. His shield hits Golem 2 (12) for 4 damage (25 remains). Horace attacks Golem two and bite and hoofs him (13,17,3) for 9 damage (16 remains)

Golem 2 attacks Kato again and hits twice (14,17) dealing 22 damage and knocking Kato unconscious.

Sam unloads on the Golem hitting thrice (6,11,12) dealing 26 damage killing the Golem.

---

So that was unfortunate. The good guys got a lot of 1’s while the golems got a lot of 20’s, even if they couldn’t confirm much. The DR made the golems tough to kill, too.

This was a hard difficulty encounter according to encounter rules so maybe it’s not that surprising that one died and everyone was beat to hell. I should have probably been more aggressive with my use of class abilities but I didn’t want to blow my whole wad before getting very far in the arena. It wasn’t until afterwards that I thought to check the difficulty level of the fight. Oops. With a use of Vanishing Trick and a Challenge, this fight would have definitely gone better. Still, I hope someone learned something good from this other than how do design an encounter better, which was my lesson for the day.


wow two characters with 20 str.

the ninja seems silly, a huge hulking ninja with mediocre dexterity.

why did you choose quick draw for the samurai if he gets quick draw with his weapon expertise?

Why one level of fighter? what do u get out of that? more saves?

Cheliax

Pendagast wrote:

wow two characters with 20 str.

the ninja seems silly, a huge hulking ninja with mediocre dexterity.

There are plenty of examples of ninjas that are stronger than they are dexterous in popular culture. I'm not a big fan of high dex melee PC's in most cases. Dervish Dance notwithstanding you get a lot of value out of Strength as long as you can provide a decent Dex for Reflex and AC. Kato does a sh*t ton of damage.

Pendagast wrote:
why did you choose quick draw for the samurai if he gets quick draw with his weapon expertise?

That's the Weapon Expertise there. It comes in at character level 4 because of the level of Fighter

Pendagast wrote:
Why one level of fighter? what do u get out of that? more saves?

No, the ability to get Fighter-only feats for the Katana since Samurai levels stack. I suspect a lot of Samurai players will be doing that. Going forward, my first bonus feat at level 6 is Weapon Focus (Katana) and at level 7 I can get Weapon Spec. Level 9 will go to Improved Crit. After that he gets critical feats for awhile.


I think they should just rewrite weapon expertise as 'levels of samurai count as levels of fighter for qualifying for fighter only feats, with respect to the chosen weapon in question' yada yada yada.

I don't think they meant for you to take a level dip in fighter. It's poorly worded.

Cheliax

I felt badly about the last fight. To make myself feel better I let them go all out in an average difficulty encounter. For two level 6's that's two CR3's. Let see what happens shall we?

2x CR3 – Spriggan (Bestiary 2)
Initiative order is Spriggans, Sam, then Kato.

Spriggan 1 shoots a crossbow quarrel at (randomized) Kato missing terribly. Spriggan 2 hulks out and increases to large size and brandishes his mace menacingly.

Sam challenges the big one. “You’re blue and dumb looking!” he cries. He moves forward on Horace and attacks (11) hitting for 18 damage (4 remain). Horace’s hoof catches the big brute on the chin for 5 more damage, knocking the Spriggan flat.

Kato uses Vanishing Trick moves forward 30’ and attacks Spriggan 1 while invisible. The resulting sneak attack hits (13) and deals a nasty 29 damage decapitating the Spriggan with a single stroke.

---

Well, holy hell, huh? They both just dropped their target. That certainly brought a smile to my face.

Edit: I randomized the next encounter and ended up with a single CR6 enemy which will be a Wyvern. Check it tomorrow.

Cheliax

CR6 – Wyvern
Initiative order will go Sam, Wyvern (hovering 5’ in the air), Kato.

Sam moves forward 30’ to attack the Wyvern with his katana (20), confirms (7), and deals a nasty 27 damage (46 remains). Horace’s hoof cannot connect with the reeling Wyvern (4).

The Wyvern is obviously pissed. He lays into Sam (9,17,15,14) but only his bite can get past the Samurai’s interposing shield. It deals 9 damage (49 remains) but Sam shakes it off before it can grapple him (1).

Kato uses a ki point to become invisible, moves forward 30’ and attacks (8) hitting with his sneak attack and dealing 28 damage (21 remains) and one Str damage, though it drops the Wyvern's score to 18 with no practical effect.

Sam takes a 5’ step to set up a flank in case he and Horace don’t finish off the Wyvern (and I remember to make the Wyvern take fly tests to stay in the air). Sam full attacks with a shield bash (14,13,14) and he hits with his shield and katana once. He deals 26 damage between the two hits and drops the Wyvern.

---

So that was nice. Sam still has one challenge left for the day. Kato has 3 Ki points. More than enough to have really done a number on those stupid Ice Golems.

I think the classes are strong but not too strong and definitely fun. The Ninja is fun because its ki points and sneak attack riders make it pretty dynamic. The Samurai is fun because between his attacks and the mount's attacks, you get to roll a sh*t ton of dice.

I think I'll give level 11 a try next. I might do 16 after that. We'll see how it goes.

Shadow Lodge

The one thing I've noticed as a constant in every ninja play test I've read so far is the use of Vanishing Trick to set up sneak attacks when flanking isn't an option. Since the ninja, at least to me, seems to be more combat focused than the rogue, it almost seems required for the class; to the point where you get one less trick than normal, as one will be spent on Vanish. Don't necessarily think thats a bad thing, however.

Cheliax

Kabump wrote:
The one thing I've noticed as a constant in every ninja play test I've read so far is the use of Vanishing Trick to set up sneak attacks when flanking isn't an option. Since the ninja, at least to me, seems to be more combat focused than the rogue, it almost seems required for the class; to the point where you get one less trick than normal, as one will be spent on Vanish. Don't necessarily think thats a bad thing, however.

This is true.

Frankly, it's something that a Rogue should be able to do as well. This class defines what a Rogue should be able to do.


YuenglingDragon wrote:


Frankly, it's something that a Rogue should be able to do as well. This class defines what a Rogue should be able to do.

Perhaps instead of giving a Rogue access to Magic like the Ninja, allow them to HiPS as a swift action?

Cheliax

Heretek wrote:
Perhaps instead of giving a Rogue access to Magic like the Ninja, allow them to HiPS as a swift action?

Or feint.


Scout Varient rogue gets to SA on a move.
Nearly as good as vanishing trick and lasts all day.

Cheliax

Ardenup wrote:

Scout Varient rogue gets to SA on a move.

Nearly as good as vanishing trick and lasts all day.

But doesn't allow for iterative. I'm not saying it isn't good. I like Scout. I liked the 3.5 Scout. I just really like the Ninja.


Ardenup wrote:

Scout Varient rogue gets to SA on a move.

Nearly as good as vanishing trick and lasts all day.

yeah but you lose the iteratives.

And with the ninja's Shuriken strike attack (two extra shurikens) from invisible?

forget about it.

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