Bit of thread necromancer, but behold the tried and true Barbarian at level 1.
Assumptions -- CRB only, 20 point buy
Power Attack feat
Regular damage is 20 (assuming average damage rolls of 7 on 2d6 plus 10 from the 7 strength modifier plus 3 from power attack), when raging strength is 24. Chance to hit a CR 1 enemy, based on Bestiary entries, is about 85%. Crit chance with a greatsword is maybe 10%. Chance of confirming is maybe 75% considering the +8 attack bonus, meaning any roll of 5 or higher will confirm on an average low level baddie. No sneak attack or flanking is necessary. No gimmick bonus elemental damage. No need for recalibrating. Fast movement allows a very high chance of hitting an enemy every round, since Barbarians have more mobility at level 1 than fighters.
By the given equation:
.85*(20+0) + .75*.10*(1*20+1*0+0)
Given my first test run with this character, this seems about on par with what I usually roll. One shot most CR 1 creatures, though I don't expect this build to scale all so well.
Human Barbarian, level 6
Archetype: Invulnerable Rager
STR 21 (Starting 18, Human +2, 1 at level 4)
SAVES: 6 FORT 2 REF 3 WILL, 5 RAGING (plus for Superstition and Rage)
Power Attack (Human feat)
Dumping your mental stats, you get an extra 10 points to play with, totalling 20. Grab 2 CON and max strength. Throw on a +1 Greatsword.
You are talking 2d6 + 10 STR + 6 Power attack + Rage power bonus damage. Throw in a second attack for BAB and AOO based on rage powers. You're a damage power house with high DR and decent armor class.
DM will likely throw a fit since he's trying to stop min-maxing. Honestly if he's that anal, just find a new group.
Dump CHA, INT
Weapon: Greataxe, Greatsword, etc.
When you hit you should be dealing 2d6 + 10 (strength) plus another three for Power Attack. Keep a backup weapon around in case you are grappled or knocked prone.
If you want to really surprise your DM, start with some Javelins and Alchemists fires, that way you can deal with ranged only enemies and swarms. The DM might get upset if you crit the CR 2 baddie and deal 4D6 plus 26 damage to him at level 1... But it's all in good fun!
Take a Lucerne Hammer or a weapon with Reach. Knock the enemies down, and watch them all die horrible deaths as they try to get back up. This works best with a 2-3 DEX modifier and maxed strength.
So the caster only dies while it's in effect, but what happens if you slit the body's wrists, cut its tongue out and then dismiss the effect? Pretty much stops any somatic or verbal spells or SLA, and condemns the person to death. Then you just dismiss the spell as a free action.
That seems pretty broken for a 6th level spell. Do RAW allow something like this?
Perhaps you're talking about a different feat. Vital Strike is a standard action that doubles the damage your weapon damage dice.
Technically it's not a standard action. The language mentions whenever you use an attack action. Theoretically that could be a hasted attack action or a full attack, as a full attack is also an attack action.
I'm wondering how killing of sentient life, "in the name of good" is regarded in traditional SRD alignment. Let's say a CG Inquisitor of Desna is killing a LE Duke or guards that are secretly worshiping devils. So overwhelmed by the depravity of the Chelish nobility, the Inquisitor slaughters every single devil-worshiping noble at a banquet and then cuts the Duke's head off as he begs for mercy. Well beyond any moral restraints of his religion and not beholden to any Paladin code, it would seem to me this is a legitimate action.
In one module, it's mentioned Sarenrae sends hundreds of dervishes into the desert and slaughter every single member of a temple that was devoted to worship of Rovagug. Given no chance for redemption, these lost souls are written off to what seems to amount to wholesale slaughter.
Given this, I have to dispute what I've read in a lot of threads here. Alignment seems to be less about actions and results, and more about motivations. Evil then isn't an action, but a mindset.
Suppose a high level NPC (perhaps a Venture-Captain or a high ranking officer in a major kingdom -- or just someone with a considerably large resources at their disposal) is sending the "B team" of level 1 characters off to another country, which requires travel of at least weeks at sea, what is the most in-world realistically safe and efficient way the NPC would go about it? Assuming that for sensitive political reasons concerning border disputes, over-land travel is deemed impractical.
Realize this sounds a bit silly, but I'm trying to keep my home campaign as by-the-book realistic as possible. What sort of ship would be fitting, and how fast could it realistically be made to go in-game (miles per hour) through custom crafting and upgrades?
Disclaimer: This is excluding silly things like Undead Druids wildshaping into whales and commanding undead on a line of rowers or something!
"Early Firearms: When firing an early firearm, the attack resolves against the target's touch AC when the target is within the first range increment of the weapon, but this type of attack is not considered a touch attack for the purposes of feats and abilities such as Deadly Aim."
Let's face it, sometimes the guys that wrote the SRD were just plain silly. Starting a low-level campaign recently, I came across this sentence. If I read it correctly, it seems to imply that one can have deadly aim with a longbow but not a firearm. That seems frankly absurd, and even more ridiculous is the idea that a low-level Monk would have the reflexes needed to grab a bullet with "Snatch Arrows". Seems pretty stacked against Early Firearms. Gotta say I'm disappointed in the SRD on this one.
Is it a real balance issue to just ignore the SRD on Firearms when it pertains to feats like this?
Ok I'll explain my tom-foolery here. Essentially one of the PC's defected and became unrepentant chaotic evil, betraying an entire major city to an army of ravenous undead (player left the campaign, was mostly a douchebag) and his character fed the villains a lot of intel on the party. On one hand, it's a bit lame to do it this way but the players have had an easy time lately and I want to have a memorable, challenging encounter.
Seems legit, seems combat maneuvers are technically an attack roll. Would Steal as a maneuver break Greater Invisibility?
I read in the SRD that targets are considered to be denied their Dexterity bonus to AC against stealthing or invisible characters but that they are not considered flat-footed. Is this correct?
I think what cartmanbeck meant was the Magus would use a quickened shocking grasp and add sneak attack damage to it as regular and then with Spellstrike use the intensified shocking grasp. Then using a full-round action with Spell Combat, use an AoE spell and add Sneak attack to it with Surprise Spells, then as usual add sneak attack to each "normal" attack. That's still getting off sneak attack four times and two spells in one turn. Even worse if the Spellstrike-affected spell(s) critically hits, because then the melee damage and spell damage get doubled separately.
It's possible, but this is a pretty cheesed up campaign and the guy is an "Arcane Trickster". He intends to begin combat with even more underhanded moves that are meant to distract, draw attention, divide the party as much as possible while he picks them off. The smoke can go into his tile, because he will be using a Blink effect heh
Dust Raven wrote:
I'm pretty sure the sneak attack damage will only be added once per attack, not once per source of damage. The Surprise Spell cap on arcane trickster is a waste for most magus. Surprise Spell is actually a waste when combined with any spell that doesn't cover an area. The idea is to fire off sneak attack fireballs and such.
I thought so too, but nothing I've read under sneak attack mentions this limitation. It mentions you add the sneak attack damage to the spell damage in Surprise Spell. The sneak attack text reads that you add it to a melee or ranged attack. Spellstrike seems to suggest that you deal weapon damage and spell damage, so it's almost like the weapon and the spell would be dealing sneak damage.
Well the way I see it is you have three choices. Either find a new campaign, grind and bare it or just talk with him and try to ask him to be more considerate. Avoid any direct criticism, and just tell him politely it will make other people feel more comfortable if he respects the group harmony. Guys like this have fragile egos, his behavior is likely trying to elicit a reaction out of you. Just suggest to him privately that he's distracting from the fun for people playing.
Alternatively he might have some form of autism or Asperger's syndrome and just be unaware of how he's coming across to other players. In that case, I think you can just ask him to not touch your miniatures and try to ignore his actions. If he's being extremely loud after a few private reminders, then it's time to ask the DM to boot him.
Coming here to check my reading of the rules. I'm building a villain NPC in a home encounter with PrC levels in Arcane Trickster, with a base in Ninja and Magus.
Regarding Arcane Trickster, the caster can turn themselves invisible at will, even if already covered by smoke. Would miss chances for different kinds of concealment would apply separately?
Spellstrike has no listed action cost, implying its part of the action of casting a spell. So can it be used twice in one turn, as part of a dual-wielding with a quickened spell, or alternatively with a speed weapon? Is it possible for this ability to be used with thrown or ranged weapons?
Surprise Spells likewise has no listed action cost, implying that it could be used whenever a spell is cast (in tandem with Spellstrike).
So if hiding with Stealth, and invisible in a cloud of smoke the targets are denied their dexterity bonus to AC. Does this allows for the sneak attack damage to be added to both the quickened Spell strike and the "normal" spell strike? Furthermore could the sneak attack damage also be added for the attack part of the damage as well as the spell damage? Surprise Spell does not suggest the damage is substituted, but rather added.
This seems overpowered when you consider a high level villain using a +5 Unholy, Speed Rapier or +5 Unholy Speed Katana and Corrosive Consumption or Intensified Shocking Grasp with the trait Magical Knack, but I am having trouble finding anything in the SRD that says it can't be done. So the total damage ends up as something like this:
(Weapon Damage + weapon enhancement bonuses + power attack damage) +(Spell damage + sneak attack) + sneak attack damage
with a critical being
(Weapon Damage + power attack damage) * 2 + weapon enhancement bonuses +(Spell damage + sneak attack) * 2 + sneak attack damage
The mean way is to just have a trip wire rigged to a trap that has Reduce Person permanently cast on him. Or send a centipede at them, or something so large that he cannot trip it. Or a curse that makes him roll twice for Combat Maneuvers.
Keep in mind from the SRD:
If your attack fails by 10 or more, you are knocked prone instead. If the target has more than two legs, add +2 to the DC of the combat maneuver attack roll for each additional leg it has. Some creatures—such as oozes, creatures without legs, and flying creatures—cannot be tripped.
Long story short is send some oozes, flying guys, huge devils or ghosts at them. Or have the enemy wizard use Dispel Magic on his buffs heh
Well I never intended for one player to become ridiculously more powerful than the others but that seems to be the end result. The entire party was pretty cheesed out with a lot of items that just flat out don't exist and stats that put them on level with minor deities. Honestly I think they collectively made a lot of bad tactical decisions when battling the betraying PC but just the same they almost killed him and his dragonflight. They almost stopped him. Balance-wise, the whole party is cheesed out and using items that often don't exist in the book.
He was forced to retreat after handing off the relic to the Big Bad, and it's believable that it will cost him game time to find the rest of the party again.
So the resolution I have is to let the players decide if they are all comfortable with a Villain PC and if not then I will not allow it, and seize the character as a villain, allowing his player to reroll.
So basically one character in my ongoing campaign has betrayed the party, and made a pact with the avatar of an imprisoned evil deity (Rovagug) to gain power. He's a half-Devil with red Dragon lineage and has convinced the red dragonflight local to the area to make a temporary alliance with him (he rolled very well for his one) after another party member killed one of the dragon's relatives, as he seeks revenge on the party and to escape the island they are all stuck on. In addition the player has powers roughly equivalent to the Sharingan from Naruto, and can become ethereal for a few rounds at will, as well as use Devil telepathy, See in Darkness and all the nastiness from levels in Ninja.
On his own he was able to slaughter most of the town guardsmen and hold off the party. He brought an important artifact to the avatar and this has allowed the undead army to shatter the magical ward and amass outside the main city and to enter, and obviously they're intent on completely wrecking the city and leaving absolutely nothing alive.
Is there any believable way I can tone down this PC's power and save the plot in this situation? The town has no realistic way of surviving, but it's crucial for some unresolved plot hooks I had there.
The way I see this, it's a rules question and not a personal morality question.
Torturing that prisoner for information might be in the forbidden area for a given good character.
This word in Alignment to me implies its a moral gray area that depends on the circumstances.
Code of Conduct wrote:
Unlike how the rules manual defines good, Evil seems to be defined as an active activity. Standing by while an evil undead is tortured, then, is technically not evil. Torturing the undead might be evil, but it is the goal of some Paladins to exterminate undead for the sake of exterminating undead.
Not because they are evil, but because they are an abomination to the concept of good and order and life itself. In that sense, undead are not considered sentient and like a form of Hitler-esque racism, it is OK to engage in the wholesale slaughter and torture and dismemberment of undead as written in
Undead Scourge wrote:
Undead are an abomination in the eyes of the just and righteous. It is no surprise then that there are some paladins that dedicate themselves to wiping these unholy terrors from the world.
While I don't like the conclusion, RAW seem to suggest that it is perfectly within an Undead Scourge's Paladin Code to treat undead, intelligent or not, like monsters and to not value their existence in any fashion.
Spell resistance doesn't apply to spells with a target of You or a Range of Personal. Likewise, a player can voluntarily choose to drop his Spell Resistance as a standard action (it's implied but not stated the SR goes back up on the creature's next turn). One of the down sides of Spell Resistance, for instance is that it makes the player harder to heal.
I think that I did read somewhere on the CRB that many spells requires a touch attack or allow for a saving thru but usually not both. However I can’t find it now. Any idea where it is?
Quite to the contrary. A touch is NOT an automatic action and any melee or ranged touch spell, stated or not, required a successful touch attack.
If the target of a spell is yourself (the Target line of the spell description includes “You”), you do not receive a saving throw, and spell resistance does not apply. The saving throw and spell resistance lines are omitted from such spells.
This only applies when you are the target. Against an enemy, he might very well get 3 chances to avoid the spell, by you failing your attack roll, making his save or avoiding the spell entirely with spell resistance.
Consider the spells Contagion and Force Punch. Both require a successful touch action and both have Fortitude saves. Likewise, Spell Resistance can negate the effects of both spells.
The DM in me doesn't like to see his baddies beaten, and likes even less the idea of my Lich's servants being brutally tortured for information. The players (a N Cleric and CG sorcerer) captured an intelligent undead (9th level Magus with Advanced and custom undead templates applied) in a way that I didn't fully anticipate. The sorcerer readied an action to cast AntiMagic field as he was again going to turn into his gaseous form and retreat. Party melee moved in and disarmed him, grappled, then pinned and then totally subdued him and tied him down.
At first glance it seemed Change Shape, Gaseous Form and most of his attacks are completely nullified by this spell. The sorcerer continually recast the spell as it was running out, and each cast was good for almost 2 hours. Naturally, baddy had nothing positive to say to the PCs and was going to serve his "master" until death. That is until the party Rogue started severing his digits, plucked his right eye out of socket and made him eat it and finally they resorted to torturing him to near death with positive energy (the min-maxing PCs used Selective Spell with Antimagic Field). Eventually he disclosed the location of his master after having lost a hand, an eye and both feet and being ritualistically tortured for a few hours. The party Paladin was running undead debuffs outside the barrier to discourage his friends from coming back to save him. (which as mindless and already wounded Chaotic Evil underlings, their controller wasn't even remotely considering rescuing one pawn).
The party melee unceremoniously decapitated the magus the same way they had his vampiric predecessor. (The players lied and said they would spare him if he sold his master out) For the Paladin's part, he virulently hates undead and has no interest in "redeeming" them, as his deity regards undead as abominations that are to be slaughtered on sight.
No risk of death from physical damage or blood loss. Bestiary SRD entry sez below zero = no death for Vamps. Therefore that over-rules the immediate destruction on 0 HP.
I agree with the RAI = dead idea, but the players didn't even bother to stake the body or expose him to sunlight. So in that sense, they were slopppy and a bit cocky. So I intend to punish their lack of due diligence with another battle!
I am going to say that the vampire is not dead below 0 life and is immune to death effects, so even a vorpal beheading is meaningless. Fast Healing would normally be gone at death, but since he isn't dead the body heals up in the time they walk away and the necromancer controlling the vampire lord (yeah, he has a 3rd party major artifact that lets him mind rape intelligent undead too!) has the body go after the head
So a bit of background, I am DMing an undead heavy campaign and the players killed a Vampire Lord a little more easily than I would have liked. As such, I plan to have the severed head ask the players mockingly "did you really think the end would come that easily, mortals?" and have the body Mage Hand its head into the wizards neck, then begin combat anew. heh
Normally beheading doesn't kill undead. I am aware vampires turn into a gaseous form when they reach below 0 hit points. I am also aware below 0 hit points doesn't kill a vampire. Do you really need to stake a vampire to kill it?
A player in my game pinned a vampire with Black Tentacles and the party wizard then held him in place with Hold Undead. The party melee came up and beheaded him with a coupe de grace before he could go gaseous.
Is he really dead that easily?
So I ran an intro module with a new player. He made a Rogue and ended up breaking out of a prison. He started out by luring the two guards in to his cell and then, upon learning he is on a chaotic evil plane where they intend to make him fight to the death, he instead methodically tortures one of them in order to obtain a detailed map of local defenses, traps and an explanation of where his personal effects are. I had intended to run an Arena-style encounter with him but he kept rolling high enough to get away with his questionable activities
The player then made a disguise check and proceeded to the guard barracks, where he murders another few in their sleep by stabbing them in the neck. Eventually they make their Perception check and wake up, at which point he rushes out of the room and jams the door from the inside and sets the entire room on fire with a disarmed fire trap he took with him along the way, burning the now-awake guards to death as they try in vain to bust the steel door down. In the end he purposefully sounded the alarm and hid in the courtyard to pick off the guards as they came out. He looked around for clues to who owned the prison and set off to assassinate the prison warden and rob his estate blind. The player contends this is all within the bounds of a Neutral Evil character ensuring his own survival, but I am not so sure heh
Well good storyline reasons the Paladin might decide to let the Rogue's kleptomania go...
They are all stranded on an island filled with all manner of undead and evil outsiders, with no obvious way of escape. They know an evil presence is behind the undead and manipulating events to try and release Rovagug upon the world.
So I am DMing a campaign where there is a LG Paladin and a NE Rogue in a party. To complicate matters, one is a Half-Devil and the other is Half-Celestial. They are currently prevented by a storyline mechanic. The Rogue is frequently trying to steal people's items in their sleep and generally ninja the loot. What can I do to encourage these characters to cooperate?
First of all, my PCs are starting off with some advanced templates and level adjustments. There will be a Half-Dragon and a Half-Celestial among them, and a very well-made Wizard along with a party Fighter that gives min-maxing a bad name. Should I add to their APL despite it being a party of 4?
Is it basically correct that a CR of 9 means an average party of 4 level 9s would have an average time taking out a single instance of that monster? Or what does it mean?
"Jack the CR up"
This is what I did. Because the players are starting with almost double the recommended wealth, min-maxed stats, cheesed out races and maximized hit die I decided to take some liberties with the monsters.
Decided to go back to 3.5 undead for one, and keep the Pathfinder immunities. Meaning d12 hit die, fortification and applying the Advanced template to most of my monsters.
I was never intending to take the campaign too seriously. One of the first encounters is a rip-off are CE versions of the Cullen coven from Twilight on the beach trying to kill the PCs through a comical series of traps and misdirection. The main questgiver is Aroden, who is not dead but has had his physical form imprisoned and his memories and mind separated. His soul has been projected into a guy resembling a hippie, who smokes weed and has absolutely no memory of falling from Godhood or being sealed into this demiplane.
So the answer has been to disallow Zen Archer and force him to reclass - he ended up deciding on a ranged Ninja again. With a mere 28 AC and 30ft range on sneak attack he is now more of a short-ranged bomber.
I face a different problem altogether: A distinct like of Flying undead. In one encounter I have a vampire lord with fly and haste already cast on himself and one with an undead murder of ravens with swam traits and greater invisibility cast on it by its summoner. Any other ideas gentlemen?
The Paladin thinks it will be interesting to roleplay. The island, of course, won't let them kill each other. So the Paladin will be forced to cooperate in order to destroy a far greater evil and prevent global destruction, a fair trade for even the most LG of douchebag Paladins. The (now Lawful Evil) Monk will decide that the demons and CE undead here are probably his natural enemies and must be vanquished.
There has to be some way of dealing with Zen Archer monks, right?