View Full Version : The Souledge [3.5 Soulknife/Soulbow fix]

Lix Lorn
2010-08-27, 02:53 PM
‘I am never unarmed.’
Ryou, a powerful Souledge.

Background: Most psionicists are more akin to magic users than to warriors, training their minds as deadly weapons. A Souledge takes this idea to its logical extreme-and then some. Extensive training of both mind and body allows them to manifest a weapon made of pure spiritual energy. Their skills with these weapons are all but unmatched, equalling even that of those who spend their entire lives practicing with their weaponry.
Races: Most Souledge come from naturally psionic races; although they can equally come from any other environment. Humans in particular provide a large quantity of Souledge, due to their natural versatility and flare for alternate adventuring techniques.
Other Classes : Souledge are a unique blend of martial skill and psionic power, allowing them common ground with many of the common roles in the adventuring party. The drive required to reach this level of ability is great, giving them common ground with Clerics and Paladins.
Role: A Souledge is almost exclusively a combatant, although they can be equally as skilled at either melee or ranged combat. In addition, they can learn a small amount of psionic abilities, most often using them to supplement their abilities.
Souledge in the World: Souledge are common choices for bodyguards, both for legitimate positions of authority, and for those less on the legal side of proceedings. Their ability to fight even without bringing a weapon allows them to fight even in a situation when others have their weapons taken.
Inspiration: Souledge/Souledge fix.

Alignment: Any, tending towards Neutrality on the chaos-law axis.
Hit Die: d8
Starting Gold: As fighter.
Starting Age: As fighter.
Class Skills: The Souledge’ class skills (And the key ability for each skill) are Autohyposis (Wis), Balance (Dex), Bluff (Cha), Climb (Str), Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Handle Animal (Cha), Hide (Dex), Intimidate (Cha), Jump (Str), Knowledge (Psionics), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Profession (Wis), Spot (Wis), Swim (Str) and Psicraft (Int).
Skill Points at 1st level-(4+ Int Modifier) x4
Skill Points per Level-4 + Int Modifier

{table=head]Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special
+2|Mind Blade, Mind Arrow, Psionic Warrior
+3|Soul Weapon +1
+3|Psychic Strike +1, Bonus Feat
+4|Soul Weapon +2,
+4|Greater Mind Weapons
+5|Soul Weapon +3
+5|Psychic Strike +2, Bonus Feat
+6|Soul Weapon +4
+6|Elemental Soul
+7|Soul Weapon +5, Psionic Devestation
+7|Psychic Strike +3, Bonus Feat
+8|Soul Weapon +6
+9|Soul Weapon +7
+9|Psychic Strike +4, Bonus Feat
+10|Soul Weapon +8
+10|Strike the Soul
+11|Soul Weapon +9
+11|Psychic Strike +5, Bonus Feat
+12|Soul Weapon +10, Greater Psionic Devestation [/table]

Weapon and Armour Proficiencies: A Souledge is proficient with simple weapons, longswords, greatswords, light armour, shields (Except tower shields) and their Mind Blades and Mind Arrows.

Primary Ability Score: Souledge come in almost equal numbers wise and arrogant, sensible and valiant. To represent this, upon first taking a level of Souledge, you must choose either Wisdom or Charisma. Many other class abilities will be based off of this ability.

BAB: A Souledge’ BAB is equal to Five quarters of their class level. However, they qualify for feats, prestige classes and other prerequisites as if their BAB was equal to their character level. In addition, they may never have more than four attacks due to high BAB.

Mind Blade (Su): As a swift action, a Souledge can create a semisolid blade composed of psychic energy distilled from his own mind. The blade is identical in all ways (except visually) to a short sword of a size appropriate for its wielder. For instance, a Medium Souledge materializes a Medium mind blade that he can wield as a light weapon, and the blade deals 1d6 points of damage (crit 19-20/×2). Souledge who are smaller or larger than Medium create mind blades identical to short swords appropriate for their size, with a corresponding change to the blade’s damage. The wielder of a mind blade gains the usual benefits to his attack roll and damage roll from a high Strength bonus.
The blade can be broken (it has hardness 10 and 10 hit points); however, a Souledge can simply create another on his next move action. The moment he relinquishes his grip on his blade, it dissipates (unless he intends to throw it; see below). A mind blade is considered a magic weapon for the purpose of overcoming damage reduction.
A Souledge can use feats such as Power Attack or Combat Expertise in conjunction with the mind blade just as if it were a normal weapon. He can also choose mind blade for feats requiring a specific weapon choice, such as Weapon Specialization. Powers or spells that upgrade weapons can be used on a mind blade.

Even in places where psionic effects do not normally function (such as within a null psionics field), a Souledge can attempt to sustain his mind blade by making a DC 20 Will save. On a successful save, the Souledge maintains his mind blade for a number of rounds equal to his class level before he needs to check again. On an unsuccessful attempt, the mind blade vanishes. As a move action on his turn, the Souledge can attempt a new Will save to rematerialize his mind blade while he remains within the psionics negating effect.

The Mind Blade is a force effect. This means, among other things, that it always does full damage to incorporeal targets.

Despite the name, a Mind Blade’s appearance can be of any melee weapon. (Although this will not affect its statistics until level 5.)

Mind Arrow (Su): As a free action, a Souledge can create a semisolid arrow composed of psychic energy distilled from your mind. If your base attack bonus is high enough to grant you multiple attacks, you can create multiple mind arrows as part of an attack. You must have one hand free to create and project a mind arrow.

The bolt is identical in all ways (except visually) to an arrow shot from a composite longbow. For instance, a Medium Souledge materializes an arrow that speeds toward the specified target, and if it hits, deals 1d8 points of damage (crit x3) plus extra damage equal to the Souledge's primary ability modifier (But not from a high strength score). Souledges who are smaller or larger than Medium create mind arrows identical to arrows shot from composite longbows appropriate for their size, with a corresponding change to the arrow's damage (see Table 7-4 and Table 7-5 in the Player's Handbook). You gain the usual benefit to your attack roll from a high Dexterity bonus.
Whether a mind arrow hits or misses, it dissipates 1 round after being shot. A mind arrow is considered a magic weapon for the purpose of overcoming damage reduction.
You can use feats such as Point Blank Shot or Precise Shot in conjunction with a mind arrow (see bonus feats provided by the class for further guidance). You can also choose mind arrow for feats requiring a specific weapon choice, such as Weapon Specialization. Powers or spells that upgrade weapons can be used on your mind arrows. Any feats requiring specific weapon choice (such as Weapon Specialization) for your mind blade also apply to your mind arrow, if applicable.
Even in places where psionic effects do not normally function (such as within a null psionics field), you can attempt to attack foes with mind arrows by making a DC 20 Will save. On a successful save, you can freely produce mind arrows for a number of rounds equal to your class level before you need to check again. On an unsuccessful attempt, you must wait 1 round before trying again while you remain within the psionics-negating effect.

Mind Arrows are force effects. This means, among other things, that they always deal full damage to incorporeal targets.

Despite its name, a Mind Arrow’s appearance can vary greatly. Some Souledge’ use attacks that do in fact resemble arrows, whereas others appear to throw their swordlike Mind Blades. Despite this, they all use statistics for a composite longbow until level 5.

Psionic Warrior: A Souledge gains several benefits normally only attainable by pure martial or psionic characters.
A Souledge can take feats that normally require a fighter level as if they were fighters, of a level two levels lower than their Souledge level.
They also have a Manifester level equal to half their Souledge level.
In addition, a Souledge has power points equal to their class level. In addition, they gain bonus power points for a high ability score.
A Souledge does not gain any powers through levelling up, but they are treated as capable of manifesting any power a Wilder of their level could manifest.

Souledges and Manifesting PrCs
A souledge qualifies for psionic classes requiring a caster level, and through Expanded Knowledge can qualify for classes requiring specific powers. However, they work slightly differently than normal.

If a Souledge would gain +1 manifesting level, as given by the Thrallherd or Elocater, it is instead treated as having the manifesting abilities, including powers known and power points of any one psionic class with a powers progression (Your choice) of level equal to the number of manifesting levels you have been granted by PrCs, plus half your Souledge levels. If you later take a psionic class, it will only stack if it is the class you chose.
For example.
A Souledge 6/Thrallherd 4 could manifest as a 6th level Psion. Three levels from Thrallherd, three from Souledge. They would have none of the Psion's class features. They would know thirteen powers, plus Psionic Charm as a bonus from Thrallherd, and the Mindlink they would have needed to gain with Expanded Knowledge to qualify, and have 35 power points. If they later gained levels in Psion, they would stack, but if they gained levels in any other manifesting class, they would not.

Soul Weapon: The Mind weapons of a Souledge increase in power as they gain experience. Starting at 2nd level, they always have at least a +1 enhancement bonus. At 4th level, and each second level after that, this enhancement bonus is enhanced, or a special ability can be added to their weapons. The enhancement bonus must be at least +1, and cannot be higher than +5 (before epic levels). The rest of the bonuses gained through this ability must be spent on Special Weapon abilities. These abilities are chosen at the start of the day, and may be different for the Mind Blade and the Mind Arrows. They cannot be changed without five minutes of meditation.

Psychic Strike: A Souledge of at Least 3rd Level deals bonus damage while Psionically focussed. Their attacks with Mind Blades and Mind Arrows do additional damage equal to the bonus listed in brackets for this ability.
Mind Blades, being more strongly bound to the Souledge, deal bonus damage equal to the Souledge’ primary ability Modifier, in addition to the normal psychic strike damage.

By expending their psionic focus, a Souledge can do even more damage on a single attack. On a Psychic Strike performed in this way, they deal a number of d6 of damage equal to the bonus damage this ability would normally give them.

Bonus Feats: At 3rd level, and each fourth level thereafter, a Souledge gains a bonus feat. This may be any combat orientated feat, (Choose from the Fighter bonus feat list), or any psionic feat.

Greater Mind Weapons: A 5th level Souledge gains several special abilities. They become able to change their Mind Blade into different shapes. As a full-round action, a Souledge can change their Mind Blade into the shape of any other melee weapon they are proficient with. The weapon then uses the modified statistics for that weapon-modified damage, critical range, and all other abilities.
They may also change their Mind Blade into a pair of weapons, using all the normal rules for two weapon fighting.
A Souledge of 5th level can attack with their Mind Arrows while in a threatened square without provoking attacks of opportunity.
In addition, when both a Souledge’ hands are both free, they may make an additional attack during a full attack, similar to two weapon fighting. All attacks they make that round take penalties as per two weapon fighting with light weapons (-4 for the primary hand, -8 for the secondary hand), but they may make a single additional attack with their full base attack bonus, originating from their off hand.
In addition, any feats or abilities they possess that improve two weapon fighting apply to their mind arrows when using this ability as if they were using two light melee weapons.
Finally, a Souledge of 5th level can transform their Mind Arrows into replicas of any other ranged weapon (Including throwing weapons), using all modified statistics for that weapon.

Elemental Soul: A 9th level Souledge learns the ability to transform their attacks into different forms. At will, they may make their Mind Blades and Mind Arrows deal their choice of any of the following damage types. However, if they do, they are no longer a force effect.
Acid, Cold, Electricity, Fire, Sonic, Bludgeoning, Nonlethal, Piercing, Slashing, or either Positive or Negative energy damage. Note that the positive and negative energy damage dealt in this way is purely offensive: the negative energy is purely destructive, and the positive energy causes a damaging overload of life energy. They will not heal any target they strike, even if the target is normally healed by positive or negative energy.

Psionic Devestation: A 10th level Souledge can release a terrific blast of psychic energy with a single strike. As a Full round action, if they are psionically focussed, they they may expend their psionic focus to make a single attack at their highest base attack bonus. If it hits, the target must make a will save with DC 10 + half the Souledge class level + their primary ability modifier, or be killed by an overload of psionic energy rending their body apart.

If the enemy makes their save, the Souledge may not use this attack again that day.

At 20th level, the save DC for this ability becomes equal to the Souledge' class level + their primary ability modifier. In addition, they may continue using this ability after the first time in a day that an enemy successfully saves. The next time an opponent successfully saves, they lose access to this ability for the day as per normal.

Soulwind: A 13th level Souledge can fragment their Mind Arrow into a blast of tiny needles, or in some other way can attack a large area. They may attack with either a 10ft blast centred on their position, a 20ft cone in any direction, or a 40ft line. Whichever method is chosen, any targets within the area are entitled to a reflex save vs half damage, with a DC equal to 10 + half the Souledge class level + their primary ability modifier.

Each target struck takes damage as if struck by a 1d3+1 Mind Arrows (normally 1d8+Wis modifier). The benefits of Psychic Strike apply, but a Souledge who expends their psionic focus may only deal the additional dice of damage to one target within the area.

Strike to the Soul: When using the Psychic Strike ability to deal additional dice of bonus damage, a Souledge of at least 17th level may sacrifice any number of additional damage die to instead deal one point of ability damage per sacrificed damage die to each of the targets mental ability scores. They are entitled to a fortitude save to negate this ability damage, with DC 10 + Half their Souledge level + their primary ability modifier.

* * *

Studious Mind
Prerequisites: Mind Blade ability.
Benefit: All Souledge class abilities normally based on Wisdom or Charisma are based on Intelligence instead.
Normal: Souledge class abilities are Wisdom or Charisma based.

2010-08-27, 04:20 PM
Just one thing that jumps out at me ...

It gets better-than-good BAB, a d10 HD and a free ghost touch weapon that's worth more than your total WBL up to level 10? Seems a bit powerful to me ...

I can't really give useful comments beyond that, as I'm not all that great at critiquing homebrew. That just seemed very off to me.

Lix Lorn
2010-08-27, 04:57 PM
Well, it's meant to be on a par with my fighters, so tier 3 (Or so i heard).
Althought, d8 hit die might be a good plan.

Realms of Chaos
2010-08-27, 05:50 PM
Odd, I thought that you had given your Fighters uber-BAB so that they could be "The Best" warriors. If you start giving it out to all of your warrior classes, it stops being special.

Also, it doesn't really need the extra boost as they gain a +10 weaponry (while everyone else is limited to a +5 enhancement bonus pre-epic), making up the difference.

2010-08-27, 06:10 PM
Souledge: I keep reading this as 'sludge' or 'so-ledge'. This may just be me.

The 5/4th's BAB is weird, especially for abilities that work off BAB. Are souledges supposed to be really good grapplers? I'd really prefer to see something like "greater weapon focus +X". BAB is already overworked, it doesn't need pseudo-BAB to confuse it.

Soul arrows are like arrows from a composite long bow: does they add STR to damage? It seems like they don't, but it's specifically called a composite bow.

Does psionic devastation suppress souledge powers? Even if it doesn't, it's relatively unimpressive, especially with the way the souledge gets iterative attacks faster than normal. If they could do it as a standard action, it would at least be more mobile than a full attack. As it is, it's only really useful if you fighting something with abnormally high AC.

Soulwind: 1 arrow per enemy wasn't any good as an arcane archer ability, and it's still not worth anything even with WIS to damage. Wizards have been dropping fireballs for 8 levels, the ability to kill a 40' line of kobolds is not impressive.

The sort-of capstone, strike to the soul, does up to 5 ability damage? This is a problem with the soulknife, in that this ability is either useless (fighting anything with 30 in every ability, or immunity to ability damage), or overpowered (animals, or just humanoids built like PCs, get knocked out in 1 or 2 rounds). Ability damage just isn't very balanced as a PC ability: either the souledge can deal with the enemy himself, or the soul edge isn't helping everyone else chip away at the enemy's HP.

Finally, the souledge doesn't have any helpful non-combat abilities. At best, they have diplomacy and intimidate, but only 4 skill points, and they're busy pumping up STR, DEX, CON, and WIS, so INT and CHA will be pretty low.

Lix Lorn
2010-08-27, 06:10 PM
These are essentially a pure martial class. They get the psionic descriptor, but less abilities then the three others.

Also, it's worded so you can only get a +5 ability.

2010-08-27, 06:48 PM
I agree that 5/4 BAB is overkill and that the weapon focus feats should be enough.

Ability damage is flavorful, I would keep it. If you agree there is a problem then throw in a fortitude (NOT will, it needs to be something that Animals and Magical Beasts are good at) save or something.

Lix Lorn
2010-08-27, 06:55 PM
I like the BAB as is.

They do not add Str to damage. Take that up with Wizards, I copy-pasted that bit. XD

I could change it to be a Save-Or Die, like my other three martials get. In fact, I could use their mechanic of 'as many times as you like until someone passes their save.'

Okay. Each target within the area is affected as if hit twice? Better?

I'll take DracoDei's idea and give a fort save for it.

Hm. The noncombat thing is a problem. What would you suggest?

2010-08-27, 07:19 PM
This... really fails to address any of the points that made the original soulknife bad. Its only ability remains "I hit it with my sword."

And what's up with the 'purely destructive' clause for the positive and negative energy types? That just seems... unnecessary. And a little silly.

Lix Lorn
2010-08-27, 07:28 PM
A problem shared by most non-casters. What would you recommend, then?

Because otherwise you can give infinite healing, for a start.

2010-08-27, 07:46 PM
They need a lot more than just a souped up BaB progression.

My personal favorite Soulknife remake is AstralFire's (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=7200545&postcount=1). The power progression and maneuver list, while very limited in both cases, give the soulknife a lot of versatility, options, and a great deal of synergy with some of the Psionic Focus feats.

And infinite healing doesn't strike me as that scary >.> but that's me.

2010-08-28, 12:29 AM
Hm. The noncombat thing is a problem. What would you suggest?

Off the top of my head? They make psionic weapons, so other psionic things. Psionic grapelling hooks, psionic walls (for cover for you or allies), psionic diving helmets, psionic sledgehammers that destroy material like a disintegrate spell. Psionic catapults for quick upward travel (landing safety not guaranteed). Something that isn't replicated by buying a weapon.

Realms of Chaos
2010-08-28, 01:11 AM
Hmm... if you're looking for ideas, feel free to look at my soulknife reboot (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=154049) from awhile back.

If you don't want to read through it, I basically gave the guy a bit of psionics and such. I also gave the guy magical armor to go with the weapon, as the soulknife has always struck me as far too squishy for a melee combatant.

Other than the squishy-ness, though, this guy makes for one hell of a combatant. Good work crafting this guy together. :smallsmile:

Lix Lorn
2010-08-28, 07:51 AM
My initial version got a Power every fourth level, and had a d10 hit die.

Possible Changes:
Change hit die back?
Add some psionics?
Remove one saving throw? I don't feel it should get both... Maybe just fort?
Armour possibly?
Some kind of psionic Creation power?
Bonus feats like the Psychic Warrior? (Has the benefit of matching the other three Fighters I did.)