View Full Version : D&D 3.x Other Companions - An Attempt at Balancing Multiple Characters (PEACH)

2014-07-18, 06:16 PM
Companion [General]

You have a companion who aids you on your adventures.

Benefit: You gain a Companion - an additional PC. Your Companion must also possess this feat, and you are considered its Companion. Which PC is the "original" is functionally irrelevant; both are considered PCs, and both are considered Companions.

All Companions advance together. For XP purposes, they function as a single PC with a single XP total, and an ECL as appropriate to that XP total, even though the actual character levels may vary. For example, if a game starts at 21,000 XP (6th level), a group of Companions have a single XP pool that begins at 21,000, have a base level of 6th, and receive XP and apply towards EL calculations as a single 6th level PC.

Each Companion begins with normal starting wealth for a character of its actual level (rather than the Companion group's base level). To whatever extent the DM monitors wealth, the entire group of Companions should be treated as a single PC with a level equal to the group's base level. In other words, after creation, a group of Companions should receive a single share of treasure which they must then divide among themselves.

Each Companion receives a Level Reduction, which by default is 2. The Companion's actual level is equal to the group's base level minus the Companion's Level Reduction.

Companions also receive limitations called Binds, which restrict some of the options or advantages of having additional characters by "binding" them to other Companions, as described below. Multiple Companions may (and indeed, typically do) all take the same Binds tied to each other. Each Companion must select one Minor Bind and two Major Binds.

Special: You may take this feat multiple times, getting a new Companion each time. Each Companion must have this feat the same number of times. Your Level Reduction is increased by 1 per additional purchase of this feat.

A character may take an additional Major Bind to lower is Level Reduction by 1, or increase its Level Reduction by 1 to remove a Major Bind.

A character may take an additional Minor Bind to gain a bonus [Companion] Feat.

A character with this feat does not receive ability score increases for gaining levels.

You may only take this feat upon character creation.

Minor Binds:

Bound Class: Choose a Companion, who must be equal or higher level than you; you must take the same levels in the same classes as that Companion.

Bound Fates: Whenever you and one or more Companions are subject to the same attack or effect, you suffer the worst result among all of you (for example, if one of your Companions failed the saving throw, you fail it as well). If one of your Companions dies, you must make a Constitution check (DC 15) or die as well; if you succeed, you take 1d6 points of Constitution damage which cannot be healed by any means until the Companion is returned to life, and must repeat the save each day.

Bound Position: You must remain adjacent to one of your Companions at all times. Any effect that moves one of you moves the other, and if one takes an action to move, the other must do so as well, both moving at the slower of the two speeds.

Bound Tactics: You act on the lowest initiative total of all of your Companions, and you cannot give or receive Aid Another actions or Flanking bonuses to or from your Companions.

Bound Training: Choose a Companion; your own skill point allocations, and your feat choices, must be the same as that Companion's. If you have more skills or feats than your Companion, the excess ones may be chosen freely. If you have fewer, you may pick and choose a subset from what your Companion possesses.

Major Binds:

Bound Actions: You may only take this bind if at least one other Companion also has it. A group of Companions with this bind do not receive any standard or swift actions (they get move and free actions normally). Instead, the entire group receives two bound actions. A given Companion may spend a bound action to take either a standard or swift action, each once per round for any given Companion (so a single Companion could take a standard and swift action, but not two standard actions, or a pair of Companions could each take a standard action). Additionally, by spending both bound actions, the entire group can take a single standard or swift action - but they must all take either the same action or an action that directly supports or augments it (such as Aid Another), and unless supporting, they must all affect different targets. So for example, the entire group could attack (as long as they all attack different foes), or cast Fireball (as long as they don't overlap), or one could attack while the others all Aid the attack, etc. If you have this Major Bind, you may not take the Bound Tactics Minor Bind.

Bound Build: Choose a Companion; you must have an identical character build (ability scores, race, class, skills, feats, spells, class feature choices, etc) to that Companion. Equipment can vary though, as can temporary things like prepared spells, readied maneuvers. If you have this Major Bind, you may not take the Bound Class or Bound Training Minor Binds.

Bound Resources: Requires Bound Class or Bound Build. Choose a Companion; every time that Companion uses a limited-use ability, you expend the same (so if it casts a fifth level spell, you lose a fifth-level spell slot; if it uses a Smite Evil, you lose one as well, etc). If you take the action necessary to use the ability and it affects the Companion itself, however, you also receive the effect. If you prepare spells, ready maneuvers, or the like, you must prepare or ready the same ones as your Companion.

Bound Status: Any time any of your Companions takes damage from any source except this Bind, you take equal damage. Any time any of your Companions suffers an effect or condition that doesn't directly alter its physical position (moving it, grappling it, knocking it down, etc) you suffer the same effect - up to and including death! If you have this Major Bind, you may not take the Bound Fates Minor Bind.

Bound Variety: In a Gestalt game, you are single-classed. If the game isn't Gestalt, this Bind cannot be chosen.

Losing Companions: If a Companion dies or is otherwise permanently removed from play (and cannot be revived or recovered), the remaining Companions should be able to acquire a replacement between adventures. If they choose not to, then the next time they level up, they may replace the feats spent on lost companions and gain back the levels lost from Level Reduction. If only a single Companion remains, it may also retrain all other Companion feats.

If a lost Companion is retrained and later returns to life or is otherwise brought back into play, it should be treated as an NPC, although the original player may be allowed to play it during interactions and perhaps even guide its actions if it contributes to a battle, it should no longer adventure actively with its former Companions. Naturally, a Companion who has been replaced could return to its group with the replacement instead being demoted to NPC status, if desired.

Optional Rule - Tiered Companions: Using this option, different classes are not treated as equal. This option is designed to work with JaronK's Tier System (but it could be used for other measurements of class power easily enough). The Level Reduction and required Binds for each companion varies based on its class Tier:

Tier 6: One Minor Bind.
Tier 5: Level Reduction -1, One Minor Bind.
Tier 4: Level Reduction -1, One Minor Bind, One Major Bind.
Tier 3: Level Reduction -2, One Minor Bind, One Major Bind.
Tier 2: Level Reduction -2, One Minor Bind, Two Major Binds.
Tier 1: Level Reduction -3, One Minor Bind, Two Major Binds.

Assert Independence [General]

You are perfectly capable of operating independent of your Companions.

Prerequisites: One or more Companions.

Benefit: You do not have to take a Minor Bind.

Bond of Rapport [Companion]

Your Companions share a powerful mental bond.

Prerequisites: One or more Companions, must not have the Bound Tactics or Bound Actions Binds.

Benefit: You have a Bond of Rapport with your Companions. You may communicate telepathically at any range; if your Companion Group has a base level of 13 or higher, this link even extends to other planes. The rate of this communication compared to normal speech is multiplied by the base level of your Companion Group. You and your Companions are aware of each other's positions and status as if by a Status spell, at the same range as your telepathy. You may freely share knowledge and memories with each other and may Aid each other on mental tasks even when not physically present.

Your bond also helps you coordinate. When providing Aid to your Companions, a bonus to attack rolls also applies to weapon damage rolls, and bonus to AC also applies to saves. The total bonus increases by +1 per ten points the check succeeds by. The benefits last for the entire round (or for as long as you continue to Aid the effort, in the case of skills), not only for one attack or check. You and your Companions all act on the highest initiative count rolled among you, and none of you are considered surprised unless all of you are.

Special: The benefits of this feat only apply with regards to Companions who also possess this feat.

Boon Companion [General]

You have close ties to other characters.

Prerequisites: None.

Benefit: Choose up to one character per two points of your Charisma modifier, who must also have this feat or the Companion feat. You are treated as part of a Companion Group with those characters for purposes of other Companion feats. In addition, you may treat this feat as a single Companion feat of your choice for purposes of that feat's effects applying regarding you (so if one of your Companions has Bond of Rapport, for example, you could choose to be part of it even if you don't have the feat itself).

Reduction Adjustment [General]

Well, if you weren't using those levels anyway...

Prerequisites: A Level Adjustment and a Level Reduction, Base Level 5+.

Benefit: Your Level Reduction "pays for" an equal number of points of Level Adjustment, up to a maximum of one point per full five base levels of your Companion Group.

Special: Taking this feat precludes you from taking advantage of any LA buyoff or similar rules your campaign may permit.

Shared Fates [Companion]

You and your Companions are joined by destiny.

Prerequisites: One or more Companions, must not have the Bound Fates or Bound Status Binds.

Benefit: Your fate is entwined with your Companions. If you and your Companions are all targeted by the same attack or effect, all normal rolls are made and then the results are applied to all of you per the best result of each roll. For example, if one of you makes the save, you all do (but if only one of you has Evasion, the rest would still take half damage). If your Companions wish, they can choose to include themselves in an attack or effect that they would normally not be subject to, allowing you to all defend against it, but causing it to affect all of you if you all fail (or if it has a partial effect even on a successful defense).

Whenever any of you take or heal hit point damage, you may divide it among all of you. If two Companions share the damage, they each take 2/3 as much. Three companions each take half as much, four Companions 2/5 as much, and so on (so while the total damage increases, the damage sufferent by any given character decreases).

Finally, as long as at least one Companion is alive, there is no loss of level or Constitution for resurrecting others, and the material components for such a spell, though they must be provided, are not consumed.

Special: The benefits of this feat only apply with regards to Companions who also possess this feat.

Share the Wealth [Companion]

The bond between you and your Companions is strong enough that it extends to magic items you use regularly.

Prerequisites: One or more Companions.

Benefit: You can construct special totems or tokens that serve as a link between your permanent magical items and unenchanted items of a similar type worn or wielded by your Companions. Only one totem per Companion may be linked to a given item, and only one totem may be placed on any given mundane item. These totems only work for your Companions, and cause the items to take up their normal item slots. They do detect as magical, but carry no meaningful cost to create. They lose their power if the item is removed from your possession for at least eight hours.

Special: The benefits of this feat only apply with regards to Companions who also possess this feat. The Boon Companion feat cannot be used to obtain the benefits of this feat. You may only take this feat upon character creation, and if you do so, your entire Companion Group should receive starting WBL as a single PC of your Companion Group base level.

Spirit Link [Companion]

Prerequisites: One or more Companions, must not have the Bound Training or Bound Resources Binds.

Benefit: You may use your Companions' spells, maneuvers, and other active abilities. This requires the normal action from both you and the Companion who actually has the ability, and you must have line of sight and line of effect to each other. Effects that last on a duration are suppressed if you don't have line of effect to each other and reinstated when you do. All effects are based on the Companion who actually possesses the ability, and it must still pay any necessary resources, but you are considered the user for purposes of targeting (which means, among other things, that you can target yourself with a Companion's Personal abilities). Passive effects cannot be shared in this way.

Additionally, if you and your Companions have the same resources (such as prepared spells, spell slots, readied maneuvers, power points, etc), you may pay for your actions with a Companions' resources, if they allow it. The Companion doesn't need the exact capability, but it must have the same type of resource at the same power; a wizard could use another wizard or cleric's third level prepared spell to cast Fireball, but not a sorcerer's third level spell slot (even if the sorcerer actually knows Fireball!) or a psion's 5 PP.

Special: The benefits of this feat only apply with regards to Companions who also possess this feat.

Subordinate Companion [Companion]

Your Companions are not your peers.

Prerequisites: One or more Companions.

Benefit: All of your Companions' Level Reductions increase by 1, but yours lowers by 1, to a minimum reduction of 0.

Special: Only one Companion in a Companion Group may have this feat.

Summoned Companion [Companion]

Prerequisites: One or more Companions, must not have the Bound Position Bind.

Benefit: Choose one or more of your Companions; chosen Companions generally reside in some safe location, and you may summon them to your side as a full-round action. If the Companion is reduced to 0 hit points, killed, or otherwise incapacitated, it is banished for 24 hours, but next time you summon it it is at full health. While a summoned Companion is present, you may call it to your side as a move action.

Special: If your Summoned Companion also has this feat for you, you are both present and can be killed or incapacitated normally. However, you can teleport adjacent to one another at will as a free action (though only on your turn).