Riffing off something isn't necessarily bad. Made a generic wizard that pulled from Aes Sedai's Three Oaths (no lying; no offensive magic unless my character was specifically in danger---which prompted the habit of getting closer to foes than was generally wise, etc). It was less about the magic and more about adding constraints that developed the character.
Those of you who disallow guns cause they “don’t fit the setting” you also disallow compound bows, right?
The last game ran from 1st to 8th level with four PCs (archer ranger, universalist wizard, nature cleric, hungry ghost monk). Monk died twice (got swarmed in melee). There was a fifth player in the early levels whose bard died.
Ballparking it, one PC death every three levels isn't unheard of in my group. We do mostly homebrew and I'll say that a lot of deaths occur because of a combination of low level (1-5) plus bad luck (crits are a thing) and because WBL and the big 6 items aren't always available. These last two things hurts some classes more than others (like our monk).
Unchained monk. I always wanted to make the core monk work and this finally gives you the tools to make it happen.
Ranger is fun as well, and the one I have the most playtime with. d10, full BAB, skills, bonus feats, even a few spells and an animal companion. If you're not sure what you want to play, it's a class that lets you try out a lot and figure out what you want more of.
I think there are ways to “check out” but still be respectful to the GM and other players. If my PC is turned to stone (and I know that no one can reverse it anytime soon), I might say “hey, I don’t want to metagame, so I’m just going to step away until my PC is restored”. I’ll usually stay within earshot so I can answer questions about my PC or help with the odd rules search but sometimes removing yourself and then playing on your phone is the nicer option.
My favorite character is Calista, a high level, chaotic good AD&D drow fighter/mage. She hits all of the tropes (good drow, fled/exiled from Underdark, power-hungry, aristocratic, confident, ferociously intelligent, beautiful, seductive, sardonic, worships Eilistraee, hunted by Lolth’s agents) but she is a blast to play.
She has spent much time on the surface and while she can easily conceal her presence, she flaunts her heritage to see what kind of reactions she can provoke. She is suspicious of high-level clerics and paladins, as their religious allegiances ultimately dictate their actions (despite any personal feelings) and they can wield powers comparable to her own.
Calista has shown up in different campaigns through the years, tearing into hordes of monsters with sword and spell. She is always on the lookout for Lolth’s agents and relishes the moments when she helps thwart the Spider Queen’s plans.
You can gain a fusion of any two slotted magic items of the same slot. Which two do you pick, and why?
What level is the character starting at? Assuming 1st level, and since damage isn’t a concern, go wizard (transmuter) with an arcane-bonded longsword (blade adept arcanist also looks good but i haven’t played one). Highest stat in Intelligence, next in Dex, tertiary in Con. I’d avoid armor and arcane training feats (instead rely on high dex, mage armor, shield spell). If wizard, you’ll want Craft Wondrous Item as one of your bonus feats to build protection items for yourself.
As you advance in level, you can use arcane bond to gradually boost your sword—-I can see the character starting off with a dormant moonblade that slowly awakens as they gain power. Feats will be pretty standard initially—-combat casting, item creation. toughness (only if you are starting at really low level and even then, only if you get knocked down repeatedly during fights).
I would have asked for the concentration check if the gunnery crews had readied their actions against the PCs (using the Distracting Spellcasters part of Ready) instead of the verbal command. Since the trigger was a verbal command, the crews could roll perception checks to see if they spot who the captain was pointing at. If so, fire at the sorcerer after the spell is cast. If not, fire at a PC but not necessarily who the captain targeted. In this situation, no one had a readied action with the trigger “if she starts casting a spell” so the Distracting Spellcasters section doesn’t apply.
The best prank I witnessed was when our half-giant secretly nailed our dwarf’s furniture to the ceiling of the dwarf’s home. He then proceeded to get the dwarf blindingly drunk at a local tavern. When the dwarf stumbled home, he was so tired and intoxicated that he kept trying (and failing) to climb into his bed (securely attached to the ceiling). When the party checked on the dwarf the next day, we found him curled into a ball on the floor below his bed.
CL 20 SLA. Times per day = 10 - spell level. I can work with that.
It hasn’t been mentioned but I threw a lower-level spell (7th) into a higher level slot (8th).
Generally male with a positive charisma modifier (even if the class itself isn’t charisma-based). The character often has some innate magical capacity (e.g. drow, gnome). Usually a prepared caster (I like having options). If an arcane caster, is likely a gish (bard, eldritch knight). If the class has low skill points, the character often has a positive intelligence modifier and uses FCB for extra skills (especially at low levels). Very rarely dumps stats; if I do, I’m probably rolling up a monk or a debuffer witch. If I start lawful good, then I’ll likely slide into something more “practical” unless there’s also a code of conduct to keep me honest.
My group uses traits and hero points. Personally, I like both. Most of my group banks their points to avoid death but the extra standard action option is nice, particularly on casters (like a mini quickened spell). Haven’t seen much combat maneuver use (as others note, it’s often more effective to just attack).
In our home game, our party recently came across the ruins of a gnomish city. When we entered one of the abandoned homes, we discovered an oven that would magically create a warm meal. Upon finishing his meal, the PC discovered that he really wanted to stay there and not leave unless he absolutely had to (such as if another PC were in danger outside). In the way of curses, it’s not the worst I’ve seen but it got me wondering what other players opinions and experiences were?
TL;DR: Have you run into cursed items? How did you deal with them?
Multiclass becomes more appealing when you are limited to which sources can be used. For example, we are currently limited to CRB and APG in my home game, so magus is off limits. If I want a non-bardy arcane gish, I'll likely be looking at martial X /arcane Y or martial 1 / arcane X / eldritch knight, depending on which class features look appealing and how much spell power I want to have.
Before jumping into paladin, players may want to try a lawful good fighter or wizard. If they can handle that without any major intra-party clashes or alignment changes, then give paladin a whirl. Navigating alignment-based differences between characters is tough enough without the added incentive of losing your powers if stray too far once too often.
I keep thinking "How can my good intentions or concept-based decisions make a weak thing weaker".
1. CRB-only dex monk (no power attack but has agile maneuvers and weapon finesse). The concept is a graceful monk who doesn't rely on Str. I kinda want to try this in a low Op game.
Disguise yourself as one of the guards; carry your weapons with you.