Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles as Pathfinder Characters: Possible?


Conversions


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Self-explanatory subject. (I don't know where this would properly fit, so if you feel it should be moved, feel free to flag it.)

Is it possible to make working, effective Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles from the Pathfinder rules?

For simplicity purposes, I created this for their race. It's not final, but it's a rough estimate of what you'd be working with as far as racial benefits are concerned.

Turtles Race:
Terrapin (This is the proper name they're given from other outlandish races in the series, so I'm running with it as the official race name.)

Type Humanoid (Reptilian) (The most sensible subject. I'd consider making them their own type, but they're mutated from a standard animal, i.e. anthropomorphic reptiles, so this suits nicely.)

Size Small [0 RP] (From what I could tell, they aren't as tall as regular humans, though I could be wrong. I honestly went with this because of the AC and To-Hit Bonus, as well as the Stealth benefits. The CMD penalty might be fitting as well.)

Base Speed Normal [0 RP]

Ability Score Modifiers Specialized [1 RP] (+2 Dexterity, +2 Constitution, -2 Charisma; they're certainly skilled and can take a beating, but their strange appearance makes them difficult for most beings to accept.)

Languages Standard [0 RP]

Racial Trait
-Improved Natural Armor (+2 Natural Armor) [3 RP]
-Flexible Bonus Feat (Generally for their Exotic Weapons)[4 RP]
-Stalker (Perception + Stealth are always class skills)[1 RP]
-Low-Light Vision [1 RP]
-Jumper (No running start required)[2 RP]
-Swarming (Usually attack in pairs)[1 RP]
-Swift as Shadows (Masters of Stealth, usually live in dark, inconspicuous areas like sewers)[3 RP]

16 RP Total

So, presuming the above race, how would you build each of the four turtles while staying true to their flavor?

Keep in mind that I'm not opposed to using other classes, either dipping or mainstreaming, primarily because "Ninja" is their profession title, not necessarily their class, but if you can properly fulfill their niche under the Ninja class, that's an added bonus.

Silver Crusade

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They would definitely be multiclass, or have traits that add Stealth and Acrobatics to their class skills.

I'm thinking Raphael would be their best fighter, something full BAB, definitely taking Improved Sunder since the sai was originally used for breaking swords.

Leonardo is probably full BAB, but with feats more geared towards leadership and tactics than brute force combat, like Raphael

Will give the other two a bit more thought.


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Mike focuses on disarming, and bardic wise-cracks and parties.

Donnie is a sci-tech crafter - analogous to crafting wizards but with SCIENCE~! and TECH~! stuff instead of magical items.

Intriguingly all four are two-weapon fighters in different ways - while Donnie isn't wielding two staves, he wields it like a double weapon.

I also think that either the four of them would have those Teamwork feats, or Leo would be a class that allows the others to use them or something similar.

Though I at first agreed, I think BAB, while useful, is not actually the most important. Instead, I'd suspect that they all have insanely high bluff for feinting (and disguise for those trench-coat-laden outings into the city).


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My starting points:
Leo: Drill Sargeant Fighter or non-mount cavalier.
Don: staff magus maybe
Raph: Slayer
Mike: daredevil bard


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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Size Small [0 RP] (From what I could tell, they aren't as tall as regular humans, though I could be wrong. I honestly went with this because of the AC and To-Hit Bonus, as well as the Stealth benefits. The CMD penalty might be fitting as well.)

I think this is definitely wrong.

Dwarves aren't as tall as regular humans either.

Small humanoids (halflings and gnomes) are like 3-4 feet tall.

The Turtles have never been depicted as that small.


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Yeah, get rid of the small size.

This is something my kids have been after me to do. :-)

Good luck!


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Well, you learn new stuff every day. I did say it was a rough estimate. Consider it adjusted to Medium then. (That just means their Stealth just took a major hit. I suppose they'll appreciate the uptide of encounters coming their way that they couldn't just Stealth out of.)

For Leonardo, the Drill Sergeant Fighter isn't bad. I also liked the base Tactician Fighter, as well as the Lore Warden, giving him emphasis on being a more "smart" Fighter. You know, the Roy Greenhilt type of martial. Sword Saint Samurai could work too, since he gets free Katana proficiency (leaving his bonus feat available for something like Improved Unarmed Strike; I know in the classic and 2003 series, about 90% of his attacks were with punches and kicks, for obvious reasons).

Regarding Donatello, I thought there would be more staff-focused archetypes besides the Staff Magus. I mean, I suppose it could be flavored that he's using some tech in addition to his attacks, but the last I checked, the Turtles are more Martial-focused than anything. Additionally, he'll be the most Skill Monkeyish of the party, having specializations in UMD, Disable Device, Perception, etc., so Combat may be more of a secondary thing for him. Of course, there should at least be a good reason for him to have some fairly high Intelligence mechanically speaking, so I suppose we'll need to dig deep for this one.

The whole "Studied Target" stuff doesn't really fit Raphael's brash and impatient behavior. It's something I certainly considered, since being able to circumvent pre-requisites with Ranger Combat Training is damn nice, but it should be something else. Although unorthodox, an Invulnerable Urban Barbarian might be the best bet.

I'd honestly agree with the whole Daredevil Bard, but there's one problem, and that's the spellcasting. I'd prefer to consider the Ranger class, more specifically the Skirmisher archetype (and maybe the Freebooter archetype too, if only because of the whole "team player" benefits without all of that silly Favored Enemy stuff).


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I think I'd just make them all ninja. Maybe with some team work feats or something.

Just my take tho, I'm certainly not going to tell you you're doing it wrong. :-)

Liberty's Edge

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I'd be inclined to make Donatello an Investigator (Empiricist). That gives him all the skill-monkey stuff and a set of abilities easily fluffed as 'tech'.

I'd be inclined to make Michelangelo an Exemplar Brawler. That gives him Bardic Performance on a martial chassis, and seems appropriate.

For Leonardo, Lore Warden Fighter does indeed make sense. I'd likely go with that. Or possibly some Unchained Monk thrown in there. With Ascetic Style he could actually go straight Monk and do katana flurries.

For Raphael, Invulnerable Rager Barbarian (possibly Urban) does sound fairly good.

All without Monk or Brawler might also benefit from a level or so in one of them for unarmed combat stuff.


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How's about a ratfolk sensei.

Dark Archive

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captain yesterday wrote:

I think I'd just make them all ninja. Maybe with some team work feats or something.

Just my take tho, I'm certainly not going to tell you you're doing it wrong. :-)

Don't think this would actually be a good tactic. While they're suppose to be ninja, none of the TMNT actually move or fight like ninja. While they're good at stealth, they prefer direct confrontation rather then ambush tactics. Opening scenes of the old live action Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie not withstanding.

Then again, the Foot Clan didn't act much like ninja either. Thieves guild, yes. Ninja, no.


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Deadmanwalking wrote:

I'd be inclined to make Donatello an Investigator (Empiricist). That gives him all the skill-monkey stuff and a set of abilities easily fluffed as 'tech'.

I'd be inclined to make Michelangelo an Exemplar Brawler. That gives him Bardic Performance on a martial chassis, and seems appropriate.

For Leonardo, Lore Warden Fighter does indeed make sense. I'd likely go with that. Or possibly some Unchained Monk thrown in there. With Ascetic Style he could actually go straight Monk and do katana flurries.

For Raphael, Invulnerable Rager Barbarian (possibly Urban) does sound fairly good.

All without Monk or Brawler might also benefit from a level or so in one of them for unarmed combat stuff.

Genius idea with the Investigator. I shouldn't focus so much on being a Quarterstaff God and more on his technological talents.

Exemplar appears to work. I wonder if there are other classes that offer Bardic Performance besides, well, the Bard. Some compare and contrast would be good to weigh options.

I thought about UCMonk, but the problem with that is he becomes a little too MAD. I imagine he needs 13 Intelligence for Combat Expertise (again, Roy Greenhilt sort of "Fighter"), he'd need some good Wisdom, as well as high Dexterity, and a decent Constitution. He also generally knows the strengths and weaknesses of enemies, which is where the whole Lore Warden aspect comes in.

I figured as much for Raphael. I did consider Brawler, primarily because he is just as hand-to-hand as Leo. I could do some UCMonk, and gain all of the proficiencies for free, and a better-than-normal Unarmed Strike. But again, he runs into being too MAD.

There's also another problematic aspect I forgot, which is enforcing TWF and probably applying Dexterity to Damage. Most of these options require strange/unwarranted dips (Ranger/Slayer, 3 level UCRogue), weapon properties (probably the most favorable options), or wielding their weaponry in unorthodox ways (such as requiring free hands).

Liberty's Edge

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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Genius idea with the Investigator. I shouldn't focus so much on being a Quarterstaff God and more on his technological talents.

Investigators (especially Empiricists) make great scientist builds in general. Plus they're actually pretty good at combat, too. He can grab TWF (or just Power Attack and use his staff two-handed...actually, I'd grab him one level of Unchained Monk or Sohei and do precisely this) and be a solid combatant.

Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Exemplar appears to work. I wonder if there are other classes that offer Bardic Performance besides, well, the Bard. Some compare and contrast would be good to weigh options.

Well, there's Evangelist Cleric, but that doesn't work at all for this and I'm not coming up with anything else.

Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
I thought about UCMonk, but the problem with that is he becomes a little too MAD. I imagine he needs 13 Intelligence for Combat Expertise (again, Roy Greenhilt sort of "Fighter"), he'd need some good Wisdom, as well as high Dexterity, and a decent Constitution. He also generally knows the strengths and weaknesses of enemies, which is where the whole Lore Warden aspect comes in.

Yeah, that'd be the issue with doing him as an Unchained Monk, no doubt. Maybe a level of sohei? That'd allow him to wear light armor, thus not necessitating too much Wisdom (assuming you're having them wear armor...if not, the Monk level doesn't make them particularly MAD and is in fact almost necessary).

Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
I figured as much for Raphael. I did consider Brawler, primarily because he is just as hand-to-hand as Leo. I could do some UCMonk, and gain all of the proficiencies for free, and a better-than-normal Unarmed Strike. But again, he runs into being too MAD.

I don't see him as super-Lawful. I'd probably just give him a level of Brawler (or the Brawler Rage Power or Beast Totem, more likely), and leave it at that.

Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
There's also another problematic aspect I forgot, which is enforcing TWF and probably applying Dexterity to Damage. Most of these options require strange/unwarranted dips (Ranger/Slayer, 3 level UCRogue), weapon properties (probably the most favorable options), or wielding their weaponry in unorthodox ways (such as requiring free hands).

I dunno if Dex to damage is actually super applicable. They're pretty strong. And they don't mostly need sky-high Dex, just enough for TWF (and Donatello can even skip that if you like...as can Leonardo with a level of Sohei, since that gives it to him free). Michelangelo seems like he'd have sky-high Dex and Dex-to-damage, but he's also the one most appropriate for a Rogue dip (he'd get Evasion), or could be using Agile Weapons.


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Deadmanwalking wrote:


*stuff*

Mikey might need the dex to damage.. He's the one who's all about acrobatics and extreme sports.. Also considering how he uses his chucks <and in the later seasons of the cartoon the grappling hook because of all the anti nunchuck stuff that cropped up around the world> He's the most likely to be a finesse fighter.. Also Leo might want some refluffed sawtooth sabres instead of katana just to not tank his attack bonus.

Liberty's Edge

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VargrBoartusk wrote:
Mikey might need the dex to damage.. He's the one who's all about acrobatics and extreme sports.. Also considering how he uses his chucks <and in the later seasons of the cartoon the grappling hook because of all the anti nunchuck stuff that cropped up around the world> He's the most likely to be a finesse fighter..

Oh, agreed. I was just noting that, for him, agile weapons or the three level dip in Unchained Rogue would be viable. And that I wasn't sure the rest needed it at all.

VargrBoartusk wrote:
Also Leo might want some refluffed sawtooth sabres instead of katana just to not tank his attack bonus.

An interesting idea. Leonardo is a little tricky to make in several ways, really.

Sovereign Court

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Or turtle as base creature, with Manimal template for sweet Amphibious and Animal Blood abilities (apply turtle stat changes to reflect greater size if base size is smaller than medium), and also, for sweet immunity to radiation, the Mutant Creature template with the Increased Speed mutation and Misshapen deformity, and if at least 4HD, also the Leaping mutation! :)

Then add Ninja levels as much as you can! (no Vanishing Trick though... they don't seem to have that... but they're good with flash bombs I think)


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Leo's blades are kinda short for full katanas anyway. Wakizashis might be a better option.


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Really the big problem is 90's asskicking movie ninja and fudal japanese assassin ninja share a name but very little in the way of a common skill set. Seriously the turtles archvillain organization was way more ninja then they ever were... You just kinda have to have some background in stealth to fight a shadowy underworld organization. Add in the usual comic book problem of every different author puts his own spin on and emphasizes different traits of the characters and genre so often it's hard to pin them down after all the years and versions. Personally I actually like the recent movies of them because they were all visibly different in a way beyond their bandanas. Hell Eastman even said at one point the different weapons were more of a way to consistently differentiate the characters in a B&W comic then anything.


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Wakizashis are 1-2 feet long according to Ultimate Equipment. Presuming that Katanas share the same issues as Bastard Swords (proficiency required for one-handed use), it's safe to say that they're at least Longsword length and the feat is required for advanced training, if not Bastard Sword length and the feat is required because it's so damn awkward to use one-handed without special training.

Last I checked, Leonardo's Swords are about Longsword length (3 feet). As good as it would be for Leonardo to use Wakizashis over Katanas, it's not particularly accurate to call them Wakizashis. In the 2003 series (which I'm basing them off of since it's the most "gritty" and accurate version out there), he does use a single Katana two-handed for a good amount of fights, presumably to make use of his 1.5x Strength against enemies who are heavily armored (ergo, have high DR).

The way to fix it would be to apply Effortless Laces to the Katanas, meaning they function as Light Weapons, and applying the Agile property that way, but we're already looking at 26,000 WBL spent just to get the build off the ground.

@ Purple Dragon Knight: As technically accurate as that may be, it doesn't really add up when you consider under those rules, they'd be Tiny-sized. Even if we adjusted the size statistics, they'd still be pretty damn weak, because increasing their size only increases their CMB, CMD, and damage dice. They're still going to be losing To-Hit, AC, Stealth, and have extremely negative Strength, as well as negative Dexterity and Constutition. All they'd amount to is some fancy outlandish Beggar NPCs, which makes no sense.

The whole Mutant thing requires HD to really kick off, and a lot of those deformations are real deal-breakers. On top of that, they're still going to have major statistical problems.


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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:


Exemplar appears to work. I wonder if there are other classes that offer Bardic Performance besides, well, the Bard. Some compare and contrast would be good to weigh options.

The Sensei Monk gains Bardic Performance off of wisdom, but it looses flurry and generally isn't that strong in the sort of direct combat that I feel like these characters are geared towards. The Evangelist has already been mentioned. I know that there is a Medium archetype that gets performance, Storyteller, but that is probably more mystical than you're really looking for. No other ones are springing to mind. I think Exemplar may be the way to go.


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We're also forgetting the most important part.........Usagi Yojimbo


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I still remember with fond memories playing the TMNT RPG!!!... Played a gorilla!


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Alright, I've considered some options, and I believe I finally got it configured as to how they can be effective. This does require some reflavoring of general rules, but it can be very believable to a lot of GMs.

So let's get started:

Donatello - Empiricist Investigator. He's not the most combat-savvy of the group (as evidenced by the Battle Nexus arc), so it makes sense that he's 3/4 BAB with keen insights on how to defeat certain enemies due to his ability to examine weakspots. With a fairly high Intelligence and 6+Int skill points, he'll have plenty of skill points available for Knowledge checks, Spellcraft, as well as some generic Crafting feats in addition to Acrobatics and Stealth. He'll spend his feats on Master Craftsman, Craft Wondrous Item, Brew Potion, etc. Eventually he'll get TWF, maybe. I'm just debating if I want to go that route, and if I do, I'd need to make him Dexterity-based, otherwise two-handing with a decent Strength is good enough. Character Traits will involve Pragmatic Activator and Reactionary (because reasons).

It's imperative to note that Donatello uses a Bo Staff, not a Quarterstaff, and it is defined as being an Exotic Weapon. One could easily fluff it as being a specially designed Bo Staff to be more offensive, but for those GMs who are unwilling to accept it, you'll have to spend a feat on proficiency for it (which you get one to spend it on).

Raphael - Invulnerable Urban Barbarian. He's always been the brawn of the group, with a brash and charge-first attitude, but he's rarely gotten to the point of being uncontrollable (thanks to Splinter's Ninja training of patience, discipline, and restraint). He's also the most straight-forward melee character, meaning no Dexterity-reliance is necessary, but he's also trained in hand-to-hand combat (literally speaking), in the event he doesn't want to impose lethal force. In this case, you'll figure he'll take Improved Unarmed Strike as a Feat, go some basic TWF (with Double Slice) and then the Brawler Rage Power (so as to help make his Unarmed Strikes remain relevant).

Michelangelo - Exemplar Brawler. Perhaps the most likable of the bunch. Configure him to be a cocky, "watch-and-learn" type of turtle. Whenever he gets an award for doing something great, he'll leap at the opportunity to gloat about it and rub it in your face. But he does give off an interesting viewpoint: If a laid-back procrastinator like Mikey can do such "great things", then certainly one of more discipline and training can do it too, adding motivation to his fellow comrades. His weapon of choice are Nunchakus (read: nun-chucks), which are exceptional at disarming enemies. Expect him to focus on some combat maneuvers, taking Agile Maneuvers, and maybe some basic Improved Maneuvers, acquiring Greater ones with his Martial Flexibility class feature.

Leonardo - Unchained Rogue (Swashbuckler and Scout archetypes)/Unchained Monk/Ranger (Skirmisher and Guide archetypes). This one took me the longest to configure, but this is probably the most I can get out of it, considering the kind of build it is. So let's begin with 4 levels of Unchained Rogue of the Swashbuckler and Scout archetypes. This allows him to substitute his trap skills for more proficiencies, the ability to take Combat Trick twice, as well as a Morale bonus to Acrobatics and Fear effects. He can also apply Sneak Attack to Charges, which synergizes with the Debilitating Injury class feature quite well. In order for this to work well, we'll have to use Wakizashis, since the Finesse Training only works with Light weapons, and Effortless Laces do not apply to Class Features (meaning Katanas are off the table, period). The good news is, Wakizashis are effectively mini-Katanas, so you figure a 2-1/2 foot long Wakizashi is approaching Katana length, and is still somewhat fitting for Leo (because as others have said, his Katanas aren't really that long compared to traditional types).

Next, we take a dip in Unchained Monk, providing him a decent scaling Unarmed Strike damage, some Bonus Feats (IUS, Stunning Fist, and one more), as well as his Wisdom modifier to AC (which will be the highest amongst the group).

Lastly, we sink our remaining levels into the Ranger class, more specifically the Guide and Skirmisher archetypes. Leonardo isn't the kind to have a sort of "Favored Enemy," nor can he cast spells (though the ability to stand up as a Swift which doesn't provoke as a Ranger Trick is pretty Ninja-y), but the Guide does offer some interesting group-benefits later down the road, which fits Leonardo's "I'm the Leader" persona.

The only major downside to this build is you'll lose a BAB compared to the rest of the party (aside from Donnie). But Leonardo fights smarter, not harder. For Feats, figure you'll be getting Weapon Finesse, Piranha Strike, Combat Expertise, and the basic TWF feats (such as regular TWF, Double Slice), the remaining TWF feats you can just fill up with your Ranger Bonus Feats. Eventually, you'll want to acquire the Ascetic Style feat chain, so you can use Wakizashis with your Flurry of Blows; the ability to get an additional attack at your highest BAB, which stacks with Haste (which they might not get, but again, optimization talk here), easily offshores the factor that you'll be down one BAB.

In General: Everybody may want things like Quick Draw, Deflect Arrows, etc. Even Skill Focii in Acrobatics and Stealth, if they can afford it, will be damn worth it.

I plan to go more into detail with this as far as finetuning the numbers are concerned (such as Point Buy), but so far I'm really liking how this is coming along. Thanks everyone for your input!


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Time to start crunching the numbers and scaling. For simplicity purposes, let's assume you have 20 Point Buy, Average Hit Dice, 2 Character Traits, and the Turtles will be level 5 (all builds will usually be online by this point, but should still "function" prior to level 5). In addition, let's throw in the Automatic Bonus Progression rules from Unchained (this accompanies the factor that they don't really have many "magic items" in the series). There will be a break-line in between the Feats for a "projected" feat progression regarding the character in question.

Starting out, these will be rough drafts, so I'm sure there are things that I can increase or implement that I may have forgotten/glossed over.

At any rate, to start, here's Leonardo.

Leonardo, Battle Commander:

Male Terrapin Unchained Rogue (Swashbuckler, Scout) 4/Unchained Monk 1 [Skirmisher Guide Ranger 15]
Strength 10
Dexterity 19 (16 + 2 + 1)
Constitution 14 (12 + 2)
Intelligence 13
Wisdom 14
Charisma 8 (10 - 2)

Character Traits
Reactionary
Natural-Born Leader (I chose this primarily for Flavor purposes, but it can be construed that the other turtles are "Followers" under Leonardo's leadership, meaning the +1 against Mind-Affecting effects may apply to them. It's unclear as to whether this applies to the term from the Leadership feat, but there is argument for it not to.)

Feats (* = Bonus)
1) Exotic Weapon Proficiency (Wakizashi)*, Weapon Finesse*, Two-Weapon Fighting
2) Combat Expertise*
3) Piranha Strike
4) Quick Draw*
5) Improved Unarmed Strike*, Stunning Fist*, Dodge* Crane Style
---
7) Combat Reflexes, Double Slice*
8) Endurance*
9) Improved Critical
11) Hammer the Gap, Improved Two-Weapon Fighting*
13) Improved Initiative
15) Greater Two-Weapon Fighting* Iron Will
17) Crane Wing
19) Two-Weapon Defense*, Crane Riposte

Skills
(9 X 4) + 5 + (7 X 15) = 146 Skill Points

Acrobatics MAX
Stealth MAX
Climb 8
Swim 8
Diplomacy MAX
Perception MAX
All Knowledges 5

Basic Stats
HP 42
AC 19 [10 Base + 2 Natural + 1 Deflection + 4 Dexterity + 2 Wisdom] (25 with Fighting Defensively and Combat Expertise), CMD 19 (25 with Fighting Defensively and Combat Expertise)
CMB 4 (8 with Disarm, Sunder, and Trip Attempts).

Fortitude 6, Reflex 10, Will 4

To-Hit/Damage
+1 Wakizashi/Masterwork Wakizashi @ +7/+7 (4 Base + 4 Dexterity + 1 Weapon, -2 TWF), 1D6+5(/+2): Piranha Strike, -2 Hit/+2 or 1 Damage, Fighting Defensively, -2 Hit/+4 AC and CMD, Combat Expertise -2 Hit/+2 AC and CMD, Flanking +2 Hit, Sneak Attack +2D6 Damage+Debilitating Injury.

Unarmed Strikes @ +6/+6 (4 Base + 4 Dexterity -2 TWF), 1D6: Stunning Fist (DC 14)

I won't lie, but including Combat Expertise is probably the biggest trap option out of this character build. I mean, I understand it fits thematically, but quite frankly, a 1-1 Hit to AC ratio is just...UGH. Thankfully, Crane Style shores up Fighting Defensively to be a far superior option, and he'll only use Combat Expertise if he absolutely needs the AC. Unfortunately, that basically works out to a dead feat that I could be using to get things like Combat Reflexes sooner.

For the record, I considered taking Slayer instead of Ranger for Leonardo, but the archetype benefits of Ranger aren't worth the Sneak Attack damage dice. Additionally, I looked over the Ascetic Style feat chain, and I figured it wasn't worth the 4 feats to get the benefits online. Relatively speaking, by 5th level, his Wakizashis and Unarmed Strikes will do the same damage. Wakizashis do Slashing damage, Unarmed Strikes do Bludgeoning, and he'll probably be doing Non-Lethal damage with Unarmed Strikes. The only downside is the only means to make his Unarmed Strikes Dexterity-based is with an Agile AoMF, meaning an Unarmed Strike will be significantly weaker, but at least I can Flurry and use Stunning Fists with it. The DC is meh, and it's a Fortitude Save, but it'll be useful against Caster types at least.

Leonardo is probably the most difficult to build, and the worst is (for the most part) over with now. I'll take a break and write up one of the remaining 3 later on. They should be infinitely simpler than this one (the next hardest would be Michelangelo, since the ways I can combine him are nearly infinite).


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I'll go ahead and start on the next easier one, Raphael.

Raphael, Hardened Pugilist:

Male Terrapin Unchained Monk 1/Invulnerable Urban Barbarian 4 [to 19]
Strength 19 (18 + 1)
Dexterity 14 (12 + 2)
Constitution 15 (13 + 2)
Intelligence 10
Wisdom 12
Charisma 5 (7 - 2)

Character Traits
Dirty Fighter
Indomitable Faith

Feats (* = bonus)
1) Improved Unarmed Strike*, Dodge*, Stunning Fist*, Crane Style, Power Attack
3) Raging Vitality
5) Crane Wing
---
7) Endurance
11) Diehard
13) Stalwart
15) Improved Stalwart
17) Bolstered Resilience
19) Reckless Rage
Rage Powers
Reckless Abandon
Guarded Stance
---
Rolling Dodge
Reflexive Dodge
Increased Damage Reduction X3
Powerful Blow
Auspicious Mark

Skills
(4x20) = 80 Skill Points
Acrobatics MAX
Stealth MAX
Perception MAX
Climb 10
Swim 10

Basic Stats
HP 46
AC 16 [10 Base + 2 Natural + 1 Deflection + 2 Dexterity + 1 Wisdom], CMD 18 [10 base + 4 Strength + 2 Dexterity + 1 Deflection + 1 Wisdom], DR 2/-
CMB 9

Fortitude 10, Reflex 6, Will 3

To-Hit/Damage
+1 Sai/Masterwork Sai @ +10 (5 Base + 4 Strength + 1 Weapon), 1D4+5/4

Unarmed Strikes @ +9/+9 (5 Base + 4 Strength), 1D6+4

Temporary Modifiers
Rage, +4 Strength (+2 Hit and Damage)/+2 Constitution (+5 Temporary HP); Power Attack, -2 Hit/+4 Damage; Flanking, +2 Hit; Reckless Abandon +2 Hit/-2 AC.

He's somewhat weak to start off, especially with that low of AC and being unable to really utilize his Wisdom until much later, but his CMD and CMB are pretty decent, and his DR will scale fairly nicely towards the endgame. On top of that, he's actually even better using his Unarmed Strikes over his Sais. I kind of almost feel bad for him, since the Sais are just such a weak weapon, but flavor-wise, I do see him using Punches and Kicks a lot more than his weapons (which he primarily uses for utility stuff, such as locking down enemies and objects from moving), so thematically speaking, it fits nicely.

With the level of UCMonk, he'll gain automatic proficiency in his weapon (sparing his bonus feat), he gains Improved Unarmed Strike (and the scaling damage) for free, sparing another feat and a Rage Power (which I can't, for the life of me, configure to use it on), and also acquire Stunning Fist (though since he doesn't have a whole lot of Wisdom, it's fairly useless). This allows him to acquire the Crane Style feats, making Fighting Defensively a much more attractive option, synergizing with the Stalwart feat chain, as well as acquiring Raging Vitality sooner. (An automatic +2 Constitution for raging? Yes please!) The best part about UCMonk is he doesn't lose a BAB for doing this.

I did consider tacking Ascetic Style so as to keep his Sais relevant, but with it being unable to stack with Crane Style's benefits (which he will need for the Stalwart feat chain to increase his DR further). Additionally, it would've ran into the same problems as Leonardo; that is, having to invest so much for such a meager benefit. If I was going full Monk, then I could see the benefits, but...


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Let's continue forward with the smartest one of them all, Donatello.

Donatello, Creative Genius:

Male Terrapin Empiricist Investigator 5 (to 20)
Strength 16
Dexterity 14 (12 + 2)
Constitution 12 (10 + 2)
Intelligence 16 (15 + 1)
Wisdom 12
Charisma 7 (9 - 2)

Character Traits
Clever Wordplay (Disguise)
Precise Treatment

Feats (* = bonus)
1) Improved Unarmed Strike*, Power Attack
3) Extra Investigator Talent (Infusion)
5) Master Craftsman (Engineer)
---
7) Craft Wondrous Item
9) Extra Investigator Talent (Amazing Inspiration)
11) Extra Investigator Talent (Unconventional Inspiration)
13) Extra Investigator Talent (Tenacious Inspiration)
15) Extra Inspiration
17) Extra Inspiration
19) Extra Inspiration

Investigator Talents (* = bonus)
Infusion*
Quick Study
Expanded Inspiration
---
Amazing Inspiration
Studied Defense
Combat Inspiration
Unconventional Inspiration (Disable Device)*
Eidetic Recollection
Perceptive Tracking
Tenacious Inspiration*
Fast Stealth
Greater Combat Inspiration (Quarterstaff)

Extracts
1st (5/day) - Expeditious Retreat, Shield, Polypurpose Panacea, Endure Elements, Heightened Awareness, Cure Light Wounds
2nd (3/day) - Ironskin, See Invisibility, Lesser Restoration

Inspiration Pool
3 (Intelligence) + 2 (Class) = 5 Inspiration Points

Skills
(10x20) = 200 Skill Points
Acrobatics MAX
Stealth MAX
Perception MAX
Disable Device MAX
Use Magic Device MAX
Craft (Alchemy) 10
Profession (Engineer) MAX
Disguise MAX
Spellcraft 10
Knowledge (Engineering) MAX
Knowledge (Local) MAX
Other Knowledges 10
Climb 5
Swim 5

Basic Stats
HP 30
AC 15 [10 Base + 2 Natural + 1 Deflection + 2 Dexterity], CMD 16 [10 Base + 3 Strength + 2 Dexterity + 1 Deflection]
CMB 6

Fortitude 3, Reflex 7, Will 6 (+2 V.S. Illusions)

To-Hit/Damage
+1/Masterwork Quarterstaff @ +7 (3 Base + 3 Strength + 1 Weapon), 1D6+5/4

Temporary Modifiers
Studied Combat, +2 Attack/Damage rolls; Studied Strike, +1D6 Damage, Power Attack, -1 Hit/+3 Damage; Flanking, +2 Hit

SELECT ALL THE TALENTS!! Seriously, there are a lot of talents here that are worthwhile to take and are worth the feats to get them earlier (or even at all). Because the only other things I could think to take are stuff like Skill Focus, Iron Will, Prodigy, et. al. and TWF doesn't really matter when Donatello can just use his Bo Staff (which is flavored to be a Quarterstaff for simplicity purposes) as a giant two-handed beatstick anyway.

I will go ahead and say this right now: Master Craftsman can go suck eggs. It should be much easier to be able to craft items without having to wait so long or sink so much investment into other random stuff besides "I cast spells because reasons." I seriously don't understand why I can't take 5 ranks into Spellcraft and still qualify for being able to craft stuff via Spellcraft. The only reason I can come up with is so Craft and Profession skills don't become completely useless. They technically wouldn't, either, since Spellcraft only deals with adding magical properties onto existing materials; those existing materials still need to be crafted, and Spellcraft can't do that (but Craft and Profession skills can). /endcraftingtrapsrant

With that being said, I decided to make the main focus Profession [Engineer] for crafting (I would've preferred Crafting, since it's Intelligence-based, but there's not much I can do about it), as he usually works with gadgets and other odds and ends, and plus an Engineer is a fairly generalist field (that is, it has applications beyond machinery), which Donnie usually functions on.

A lot of times, he can pick a contraption up and tell you what it is, how it works, etc., as well as the basics of certain laws and principles. Of course, whether or not you'll understand what he's saying in his own tech-lingo is a whole different matter. He's also not the best martial character, and there is evidence of that, though it's safe to say that he can certainly be competent with his Studied Combat and Studied Strike abilities, but at least generally speaking, he's not too great.

Of course, his true benefits come from the factor that he has 200 skill points, which results in ~10 maximum skills (effectively speaking). A lot of his skills are also keyed to Intelligence, though those that aren't will still be pretty good. I was hoping to make him more well-rounded in his skills, but things like Perception, Acrobatics, Stealth, Disguise, even UMD and Disable Device, are "infinitely-scaling" skills (that is, their DCs will always vary, and will almost always get higher as adventures progress), and not sinking maximum ranks into those skills really hurts your ability to contribute with those skills. This can be shored up by the factor that Inspiration is great for adding to rolls, but there's also the ABP progression to consider, which will give him more Intelligence (which means more Inspiration, Skill Points, etc.), so not having every single skill isn't the worst thing in the world.

Liberty's Edge

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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
He's also not the best martial character, and there is evidence of that, though it's safe to say that he can certainly be competent with his Studied Combat and Studied Strike abilities, but at least generally speaking, he's not too great.

Well, at say 8th level, assuming a +2 Str belt and a +1 weapon, and using Heroism and Haste Extracts, he'd have +16/+16/+11 (+4 Str, +4 Studied Combat, +6 BAB, +1 Weapon, +2 Heroism, +1 Heroism, -2 Power Attack) to hit for 1d6+17 damage (+6 Str, +4 Studied Combat, +1 weapon, +6 Power Attack). That's...pretty impressive offensively for the skill guy.

I mean, even Raphael is only +14/+14/+9 (+8 Str, +8 BAB, +2 Furious AoMF, -3 Power Attack, -1 Fighting Defensively) to hit for 1d6+16 (+8 Str, +6 Power Attack, +2 AoMF).

Now, sure, Donatello has to use Extracts to get there, and might pass some off instead, but he's no slouch. His AC will be pretty good, too.


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I generally don't tend to include temporary benefits like that in general statistics. I mean, I suppose I should've mentioned them in the Temporary Modifiers, but he doesn't get stuff like Haste or Heroism until 7th level, and even then he can only use both of them once, tops. I mean, it's great if they fight a BBEG like the Shredder (who is, in multiple versions, considered a Construct, meaning Studied Strike and similar effects would not work), but I don't see that being a constant benefit.

The same could also be said for Raph and his Rage, but Rage Rounds last infinitely more than Inspiration does in the early game, and by the late game, they practically no longer become a trackable resource unless you're running into 10+ round encounters.

Raph isn't particularly designed to have a terrible amount of AC, he's more about just taking an absolute beating (hence the high focus on DR with the Stalwart feat chain) and shrugging it off.

Crane Riposte reduces the penalty to -1, not Crane Wing, so it's still -2. I don't believe you can create an AoMF using the APB rules, either.

Also, you're forgetting Reckless Abandon, which would give Raph an extra +3 To Hit (cancelling Power Attack), although he loses 3 AC (which is fine, he'd be converting the AC benefit to DR via Stalwart feat chain anyway). I'm not sure if that Rage Power scales with Barbarian levels or just character levels. So he'd still be 1 below Donatello, and if he utilized a two-handed weapon, he would easily outclass Donatello's damage.

Liberty's Edge

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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
I generally don't tend to include temporary benefits like that in general statistics. I mean, I suppose I should've mentioned them in the Temporary Modifiers, but he doesn't get stuff like Haste or Heroism until 7th level, and even then he can only use both of them once, tops.

True. Still, those only add to attack. He's managing a respectable +13/+8 even without them and +15/+10 with Heroism, which lasts about an hour and a half by this point.

Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
I mean, it's great if they fight a BBEG like the Shredder (who is, in multiple versions, considered a Construct, meaning Studied Strike and similar effects would not work), but I don't see that being a constant benefit.

Studied Combat works fine, though, and that's the important one.

Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
The same could also be said for Raph and his Rage, but Rage Rounds last infinitely more than Inspiration does in the early game, and by the late game, they practically no longer become a trackable resource unless you're running into 10+ round encounters.

The same is sorta true of Heroism given its high duration. Admittedly less so for Haste.

Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Raph isn't particularly designed to have a terrible amount of AC, he's more about just taking an absolute beating (hence the high focus on DR with the Stalwart feat chain) and shrugging it off.

Oh, naturally. I was just noting Don as on par.

Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Crane Riposte reduces the penalty to -1, not Crane Wing, so it's still -2. I don't believe you can create an AoMF using the APB rules, either.

Huh? Furious is a weapon property and allowable. You're right on Crane Wing, though.

Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Also, you're forgetting Reckless Abandon, which would give Raph an extra +3 To Hit (cancelling Power Attack), although he loses 3 AC (which is fine, he'd be converting the AC benefit to DR via Stalwart feat chain anyway). I'm not sure if that Rage Power scales with Barbarian levels or just character levels. So he'd still be 1 below Donatello, and if he utilized a two-handed weapon, he would easily outclass Donatello's damage.

That one scales with Barbarian, but yeah, I totally missed it. Still, as you say, that makes for a +15/+15/+10 and -1 to hit and damage. If he wielded a two-handed weapon his damage would be +23 or so. Which is more, but in the same ballpark.


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The only other alternative is to instead take 2 levels of UCMonk, more specifically the Master of Many Styles archetype (which I verified can be taken with the UCMonk), and ditch Crane Wing altogether (which is fine, since that extra Dodge Bonus from Fighting Defensively for that would not apply to Stalwart). The downside to this is killing off my Flurry of Blows (which is a pretty brutal loss, even for the 1 level dip), and delaying Barbarian progression (which isn't a dealbreaker at this point).

This allows Raph to be doing 1.5x Strength with all of his Unarmed Strikes (2x Strength for the first attack), as well as maintain his Fighting Defensively at the -2 penalty, with a +4 Dodge bonus to AC.

To be honest, it might not even be worth it later down the road. With Flurry of Blows, I'll get another attack at my highest BAB, which means I'll have more chances to hit with 2 attacks there than the other way. Plus, each attack will only receive a +4 damage increase (well, +8 for the first, +4 for each consecutive), which amounts to compiling my bonuses to hit for 1 attack into two attacks. It's like a reverse Vital Strike conundrum.

I also noticed that I could, in fact, Flurry with the Sais, which means they can still technically be used, but the problem still remains that their damage dice are just crap in comparison to a typical Unarmed Strike.


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Well, after some time off to deliberate how I'd want to build him, here's the party dude Michelangelo:

Michelangelo, Cowabunga Dude:

Male Terrapin Unchained Monk [Weapon Adept] 1/Exemplar Brawler 4 (to 19)
Strength 16
Dexterity 14 (12 + 2)
Constitution 12 (10 + 2)
Intelligence 10
Wisdom 8
Charisma 14 (16 - 2)

Character Traits
Reactionary
Martial Manuscript

Feats (* = Bonus)
1. Perfect Strike*, Weapon Focus (Nunchaku)*, Improved Unarmed Strike*, Combat Reflexes*, Dazzling Display
3. Dirty Fighting, Power Attack*
5. Battle Cry
---
6. Improved Disarm*
7. Intimidating Prowess
9. Greater Disarm*
11. Shatter Defenses
12. Cornugon Smash*
13. Outflank
15. Ascetic Style (Nunchaku), Hammer the Gap*
17. Ascetic Form
18. Ascetic Strike*
19. Monastic Legacy

Limited Use Abilities
Martial Flexibility 5 charges/day; Call to Arms (negates Flat-Footed), Acquire 1 Combat Feat for 1 Minute as a Move Action

Inspiring Prowess 9 rounds/day; +1 Competence Bonus to Attack/Damage rolls, +1 Morale Bonus to Saves V.S. Charm and Fear

Battle Cry 2 uses/day; +1 Morale Bonus to Attack and Damage Rolls and Saves V.S. Fear for 1 Minute

Perfect Strike 2/day; Roll Twice and take higher result, once per round

Field Instruction 1/day (at character level 6); Allies within 30 feet receive the benefits of a single Teamwork Feat

Skills
Acrobatics MAX
Stealth MAX
Perception MAX
Intimidate MAX

Basic Stats
HP 41
AC 16 [10 Base + 3 Dexterity + 1 Deflection + 2 Natural], CMD 21 [10 Base + 5 BAB + 3 Strength + 2 Dexterity + 1 Deflection]
CMB 8

To-Hit/Damage
+1/Masterwork Nunchakus @ +8/+8, 1D6+8/7

Unarmed Strikes @ +6/+6, 1D6+7

Temporary Modifiers
Battle Cry, +1 Hit/+1 Damage; Power Attack, -2 Hit/+4 Damage; Inspiring Prowess, +1 Hit/+1 Damage; Perfect Strike, Roll Twice and take Higher Result on One attack per round; Dazzling Display, -2 Hit/-2 Saves/-2 Checks on Enemies within 30 feet

I gotta say, the Unchained Monk is almost invaluable to the generation of (most of) the Turtles, given they provide decent Unarmed Strike dice, bonus feats up the wazoo, etc. and that there are a lot more archetypes that work with the UCMonk than people lead on. Not only does MoMS work, but so does the Weapon Adept, which is pretty damn neat for Michelangelo for when he has his moments. Granted, he won't have any Wisdom for his AC (because let's face it, he does make some very silly life decisions), but of all the turtles, he is perhaps the most "likeable," hence his higher than usual Charisma.

This build seems a lot more straight forward than I thought, though between the Martial Versatility and the Battle Cries and the Inspiring Prowess and the Perfect Strikes, there are so many damn resources to keep track, you'd think he'd have more Intelligence to be able to do so reliably. But that's Mikey for ya.

The only question I have for this build is how the Brawler's Flurry interacts with the UCMonk's Flurry of Blows, or if it can interact at all. From what I can tell, the Brawler's Flurry functions as the original Flurry of Blows, in that you can use Unarmed Strikes, and any weapons in the Close or Monk weapon groups, and the UCMonk's Flurry of Blows provides an extra attack at your highest attack, but requires almost identical circumstances.

Both of the abilities say "as a full-attack action," so this means I can either use a Brawler's Flurry or a Flurry of Blows, but not both (because each requires their own Full Attack Action). I mean, one interpretation would allow you to implement both into a single Full Attack Action (one extra attack at your highest BAB, implement TWF rules and penalties on every attack), but as to whether that's the actual interpretation is unknown; until it's clarified, I'm going to treat them as separate, though it would be pretty wicked if I could combine them.

**EDIT** Forgot basic to-hit and damage math, as well as temporary bonuses. Doh!

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