Adjudicator (Inquisitor)


Round 2: Design an archetype

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6 aka squidfeatures

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Adjudicator (Inquisitor)
Some inquisitors feel that quashing heresy in realms as independent and chaotic as the River Kingdoms is impossible. Adjudicators, however, view the Six River Freedoms as the perfect framework for cutting to the heart of heresy. Few things are permanent in the River Kingdoms, but adjudicators make one thing certain: oathbreakers die.

Interrogator’s Intuition (Ex): Once per day, the adjudicator may reroll a Sense Motive check or Diplomacy check made to gather information that she just made before the results of the roll are revealed. She must take the result of the reroll, even if it's worse than the original roll. This ability replaces monster lore.

Trial by Jury (Su): At 3rd level, once per day as a standard action, the adjudicator can grant allies adjacent to her the benefit of one of her active judgments for 1 round. This ability replaces solo tactics.

Mark the Accused (Su): At 3rd level, once per day as a standard action, an adjudicator can mark a creature within 30 feet with a divine rune. (Will negates, DC 10 + 1/2 the adjudicator’s class level + the adjudicator’s Wisdom modifier). A mark lasts for 2 hours or until dismissed. A creature can only ever be marked once.

A marked creature receives a -2 penalty to Will saves against spells cast by the adjudicator. The adjudicator can locate a marked creature as if she were using the locate creature spell.

If the adjudicator knows or learns that a marked creature has broken an oath (e.g. an ex-paladin, ex-cleric, etc., or simply someone who broke a serious promise) she may, as a swift action, activate the mark on that creature, immediately causing 1d6 points of damage for every two adjudicator levels she possesses.

A creature with an active mark receives a -1 penalty to all saving throws and a -1 penalty to Armor Class. Creatures who are within or enter within 30 feet of a creature with an active mark are affected as though the adjudicator had cast denounce on the marked creature. An active mark sheds light equivalent to a light spell.

At 6th level, and every three levels thereafter, the penalty to saving throws and to Armor Class from an active mark increases by -1. Also at these levels, the adjudicator can improve mark the accused by choosing one of the following:

Increase the number of uses per day by one.
Increase the DC to resist by +1.
Increase the penalty to Will saves against spells cast by the adjudicator by -2.
Increase the duration by 2 hours.

The adjudicator may choose an improvement more than once. Their effects stack.

This ability replaces all bonus teamwork feats.

The Exchange Contributor; Publisher, Kobold Press; RPG Superstar Judge

Congrats Guy on making the Top 32! Your inquisitor archetype is one of just 3 in that category.

Right off, you address the setting problem with inquisitors crushing heresy in the region known for freedom and tolerance. Smart decision. Even if I don't *entirely* buy the argument, "oathbreakers die" is a good pivot for an inquisitor. That said... Wow the runes complexity is fairly high, and not all of it is good complexity. The ajudicator needs to choose one of 4 possible improvements every there levels, effects stack, no teamwork feats.

I dunno. I get the premise, I get the mechanics, I just don't want to play one. Or rather, I might, but not in the River Kingdoms.

We'll see what the other judges say, but this archetype didn't work for me.

Designer, RPG Superstar Judge

Interrogator’s Intuition (Ex): Reroll Sense Motive or Diplo (gather info) once per day, gotcha. Not too exciting, but neither is monster lore.

Trial by Jury (Su): Share your judgment ability, sure. Sad that you have to give up your own turn to give everyone else something cool. I suppose this is all adjacent allies? Do they keep the judgment if they move away from you and attack? As written, they just have to be adjacent when you activate the ability. I'm not sure what this has to do with oathbreakers. The default action to use an ability is a standard action, so you don't need to call that out.

Mark the Accused (Su): Mark, track, damage, gotcha. The damage option needs a range. Can you keep activating it over and over, once per round? When you say "A creature can only ever be marked once," do you mean "a creature can only be have one such mark at a time," or do you mean "If I mark you on Jan 1 2013, you can NEVER be marked again after that, even years later"?

This is not a simple ability, and the inquisitor already has several complex abilities. That's putting a big burden on the player in terms of choice paralysis. I think that, and the mechanical problems/necessary clarifications for this archetype are holding it back.

I do NOT recommend this archetype for advancement.

Founder, Legendary Games & Publisher, Necromancer Games, RPG Superstar Judge

Initial impression: Good use of the setting, I like the "judicial themed" abilities, I really like some of the design choices here, but I have to agree with the other judges about the lacking mechanics which is too bad because I think you were really on to something. This seems like a first draft.

On the fence. We'll have to see how the others do.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9 aka motteditor

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Clark Peterson wrote:
I like the "judicial themed" abilities.

*snicker* Says the sitting judge...

(Sorry, comment just amused me. I'll be back to give real feedback after reading everything.)

Marathon Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7

I like the oathbreaker must die tie in. This is the first archetype i read, so I need to read everyone else before i have any comparison.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Locke1520

I like the thematic intro but it goes down hill from there. The only ability I really like is trial by jury the others are either meh or unnecessarily complex. For the extra complexity in Mark the Accused I would hope for a cooler payoff but that just may be me.

Congratulations on making the top 32 and good luck here in the archetype round.

Marathon Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Clouds Without Water

I will give general impressions, but with 3 areas of particular focus that suit my personal interests. Archetype and feat names: do they show flare? How closely tied to the River Kingdom is the archetype? And last but certainly not least, do I want to play this archetype?

Archetype and feat names: Above average. All thematically sound if not River Kingdom-y

River Kingdom tie: Sliiiiightly above average. I think the abilities grow from the Oathbreakers Must Die theme, but if you don't buy that then there's little tie. Could have really locked that connection down better.

Desire to play: Above average, in the RK. The complexity of the Mark could definitely be simplified, that's what holds this back from being a Strong Want To Play for me. But the idea of wandering around enforcing Oathbreakers Must Die is appealing.

Star Voter Season 6

I like the flavor, but this has some ballance issues.

Trial by Jury has the same problem I have with the ranger favored enemy bonus for allies. It sounds cool on paper but will never be worth the action ecconomy. Make this a swift action then it will be useful. As a standard action, it is way too weak to ever see use.

Giving someone -2 per 3 levels to will saves against your spells for 2 hours is rediculous, even if you don't activate it for annother 1 per 3 for all saves.

The broken oath mechanic is too vague and open to GM interpretation.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9 aka theheadkase

Adjudicate is one of my personal favorite words. Good job on figuring that out with your title :) But seriously, you just found a synonym for judge or even inquisitor, good and bad (kinda boring/obvious).

I'm not going to touch the complexity of Mark. I'll say that up front. I like the idea, but wow is it rife with questions that are possibly not answerable in the wordcount. It may have been better to separate some of the additional parts into separate abilities at different levels.

My main thing here, is theme. At first glance, you've got a good theme. Judgement. Adjudication. (Extreme Adjudication with Oathbreakers Must Die theme!). It was great and I was excited on the first read through.

Then...it kind of hit me when I thought about the name. It isn't as tight as it could be in relation to its powers. Trial by Jury...but she is the Adjudicator! She wouldn't be letting others adjudicate for her! Interrogator's Intuition...again I feel like this archetype should already KNOW the person is guilty, not requiring a check. This can be subjective...but with the Oathbreakers Must Die theme in the beginning, this archetype feels like it is supposed to be a cannon deployed for decisive victory.

You tied it into the RK with the Six Freedoms. A bit obvious but good. Now the problem is the theming inside the archetype and its powers that are in contrast.

I will keep this as a POSSIBLE DO RECOMMEND if I have any votes left.

Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 9

This archetype has the expected level of flavor one would expect at this stage, but it's biggest draw is a hugely complex ability that takes away what is normally one of the key features of the class.

I also have to ask, how do you qualify "if an adjudicator learns the subject is an oathbreaker"? Does it require him to witness it? To hear about it? To guess it? Use magic like detect evil?

With such a key question in the now-key ability of this class, I cannot justify voting for it.

Good luck in this and future rounds!

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32, 2011 Top 16 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka JoelF847

I like the twist/theme of the inquisitor with the 'Oathbreakers die' river freedom, but I don't feel the mechanics really live up to that promise. Sure, your mark is great against oathbreakers, but why would an inquisitor mark someone BEFORE they broke their oath? If they never break their oath, it a) doesn't really do much to help the inquisitor, and b) seems out of line with the correlary of 'Oathbreakers die', which is 'those who don't break their oaths are good in my book'. It's like the adjudicator believes that people are guilty until proven innocent, which doesn't seem like a good fit.

Dedicated Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9

Congrats! I love your premise. I have no experience with Inquisitors so I will have to defer to the judgement of others on that.
Good Luck!

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 8 aka nate lange

great template use and writing- after the first paragraph you had me wanting to love this archetype.

unfortunately, the mechanics weren't there. i won't repeat what many already said but i will reiterate that there are both unanswered questions and balance issues. by the time i was done reading it, the charm person spell cast by your opening paragraph had worn off.

Contributor

I was really impressed by the concept of "Trial by Jury." I liked that ability a lot and I had high hopes for this archetype after I read that one.

But then your Marked ability happened. That particular ability is very rules-heavy, and I was baffled that you replaced an ability called "solo tactics" with "Trial by Jury," the later clearly referencing a group buff, but then your big finishing ability didn't actually do anything for the group.

I would have liked to see a version of that rune that played with your allies a little bit more. Perhaps did something with judgments in that respect.

RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9 aka surfbored

Guy Russell wrote:

Adjudicator (Inquisitor)...

The name works for me. I like most of the flavor paragraph too, but "oatherbreakers die" felt a little heavy handed. But then, RK is a little heavy handed, so it fits.

Guy Russell wrote:

Interrogator’s Intuition (Ex): Once per day, the adjudicator may reroll...

A little bland and only one step up from "+N to skill check N". It's on par with monster lore.

Guy Russell wrote:

Trial by Jury (Su): At 3rd level, once per day as a standard action...

I kinda like the name of this ability. But the mechanics aren't spelled out well enough and it should be a swift or move action at the most. Fix the mechanics and I like this one.

Guy Russell wrote:
Mark the Accused (Su): At 3rd level, once per day as a standard action, an adjudicator can mark a creature...

You pretty much put all your eggs in this basket, so if there's a problem here, you're sunk. And there are problems here. The one thing I haven't seen mentioned here yet, is the ability doesn't necessarily grant anything.

Assuming someone does fail the save and gets marked. If they're not an oathbreaker, they take a -2 on Will saves from the adjudicator and that's all. Sure, you can find them, but how often do you need to relocate an enemy you're currently looking at?

At higher levels the target gets worse at saving against your Will spells, but that's all again. Unless they break an oath.

You could lose 6 Teamwork Feats -- just to make a target suck at Will saves (from you only). Obviously you hope that your GM will throw in a bunch of oathbreakers, but how does that work against 90% of the monsters you're going to face?

The formatting is also too complex for one ability. You should've broken this into 6 parts and used, "this replaces the Nth level Teamwork feat". That would make it easy to follow and keep balanced.

I will say that I like that you tossed in EX-characters as oathbreakers; that totally works and frankly, it's the only hard rules around oathbreaking.

OVERALL: I like where you were headed, but you never made your final destination.

Good luck!

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Champion Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9 aka GM_Solspiral

Good: bold move doing an inquisitor in the RL, design seems solid to me.
Bad: Sorry but I do not like and do no see the point of the inquisitor. Maybe its because I cannot separate them from the real inquisition which is not one of history's prettier periods.
Ugly: Mark of the accused seems like the big signature ability and its what 3rd level? I like to see archetypes spread out their changes more across a wider array of level.
Overall: not likely to gain my vote.

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