View Full Version : Another "Help me build crunch for my fluff" [3.5]

2008-10-20, 09:36 PM
I stick with 3.5 on these because of the bazillions of splats giving near-infinite possibilities.

The fluff is basically the mightiest hunter in the land, gets drunk and brawls most days. Uses a spear to fight monsters, a longsword or fist to fight people. Not booksmart by any stretch of the imagination but is certainly clever in the ways he takes down big prey. Can use teamwork though prefers not to (has highest respect for melee fighters, but next to none for archers, thinking they are pansies). Casters are pretty foreign, 'cept for the occasional druid you find in the wild and in wilderness towns. Nomadic. Probably human or perhaps halfling would be cool. Emphasis on hunting big monsters and taking their fangs/claws/etc as trophies.

My first thought was ranger, but archery is out and TWF doesn't really fit. Barbarian was next of course, and fits pretty well, though raging isn't exactly the hunter's style. Then I thought ranger again with TWF with a reach weapon and unarmed strike (IUS is a must, though anything past that is a stretch). Is there some prestige class somewhere that fits this?

So time to develop a 20-level build.

2008-10-20, 09:39 PM
There are a plethora of barbarian variants. I'm sure one of them sacrifices rage for something else.

2008-10-20, 09:39 PM
The Trophy Hunter feat (PHB II) and Leviathan Hunter PrC (SW) spring immediately to mind...

There are a plethora of barbarian variants. I'm sure one of them sacrifices rage for something else.
Whirling Frenzy (UA)

2008-10-20, 09:43 PM
Fighter/rogue sounds like it will fit. Most hunters don't go toe to toe with their prey - they try to kill it with one good hit. Sneak attack damage fits this. Spend some of those skill points on craft/profession for taking animal parts.

2008-10-20, 09:43 PM
Wilderness-type? Ranger variants would work.

Bear-Wrestling (DR326 p97)
Improved Unarmed Strike
Improved Grapple
Stunning Fist

Strong-Arm (DR326 p97)
Power Attack
Improved Sunder
Great Cleave

One of those might suit?

Otherwise, scout is a wilderness-type with some nice abilities. Tneds to be more mobility oriented, but a melee-destroyer-type scout can be nasty.

2008-10-20, 09:46 PM
I believe the SRD has a barbarian variant that replaces raging with "whirling frenzy (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/classes/classFeatureVariants.htm#rageVariantWhirlingFrenzy )," which is a bit less feral and a bit more "master of combat"

2008-10-20, 09:52 PM
Talk to your DM about allowing you to flurry instead of TWF-ing with a Ranger. If he will, then take a Ranger and Flurry with a Longsword, Unarmed Strike, and Spear. There are feats in the Eberron Campaign Setting that allow you to Flurry with the Longsword and Spear

Grab 4 levels of Swordsage (Standard) and Superior Unarmed Strike.

The build would look something like this...


Improved Unarmed Strike
Superior Unarmed Strike
Weapon Focus: Longspear
Serpent Strike
Weapon Focus: Longsword
Whirling Steel Strike

Keld Denar
2008-10-20, 09:53 PM

Maybe take the illiterate flaw to dumb down the book smarts, but call the high int score a "natural cunning".

For your spear, focus on Diamond Mind and Iron Heart maneuvers, with a smattering of Stone Dragon maybe?

Improved UAS is a Warblade bonus feat, so you'd get it as early as level 5, and with your martial strikes to make up for the low damage that an UAS does anyway, you'd be a pretty effective unarmed brawler.

For the rest of your build, make it to taste. If you want to primarily wield the a Long Spear, take Weapon Focus: Long Spear. You are a Warblade, so you can change that focus to anything you want tomorrow anyway. Then maybe grab like, the Track feat, a little Power Attack, maybe Improved Toughness for mega HP, and call it a game.

2008-10-20, 09:58 PM
I'd make a Swordsage, switch Longsword for Scimitar and pick Desert Wind for your Discipline Focus to get bonuses with your preferred weapons. Get Power Attack and Leap Attack, and use Tiger Claw maneuvers for leaping charges and to get additional attacks on a charge. Using the adaptation described on page 20, maybe make Ranger spells available to be taken in place of maneuvers of equal level and add Survival to the list of class skills in place of another class skill. I'd definitely make this character either a Wild Elf or Wood Elf, maybe even with the Wild template (http://crystalkeep.com/d20/rules/DnD3.0Index-Templates.pdf) (page 15, +0 LA).

2008-10-20, 10:02 PM
I think what would fit the fluff best and be mechanically viable would be to stack up power attack bonuses, using leap attack, shock trooper, favored power attack, and possibly frenzied berserker (for supreme power attack).

An alternative for a more canny hunter would be to take a level or three in rogue and the arterial strike feat. It's slow, but most monsters are incapable of a dc 15 heal check or magical healing. Hit it a few times and then trail it from a safe distance while it bleeds out.

2008-10-20, 10:12 PM
If you want to go for the "Skilled Hunter" archetype, who kills or incapacitates their foe with a single hit, Assassin would be a good fit. Paralysis, Poison, and Death attacks would do that very nicely, and rather than fighting people you can scare them into leaving you alone.

2008-10-21, 08:44 AM
If you want to go for the "Skilled Hunter" archetype, who kills or incapacitates their foe with a single hit, Assassin would be a good fit. Paralysis, Poison, and Death attacks would do that very nicely, and rather than fighting people you can scare them into leaving you alone.

The one time Assassin might actually be useful....the animals probably have crap for fortitude. That's not a bad idea....against character levels or any monster badder than an orc it's pretty useless.

2008-10-21, 02:36 PM
As Crystal Keep informs us, there are alternative Combat Styles for the ranger. These may be useful:

Bear-Wrestling (DR326 p97): Improved Unarmed Strike, Improved Grapple, Stunning Fist
Strong-Arm (DR326 p97): Power Attack, Improved Sunder, Great Cleave

2008-10-21, 03:34 PM
How do you feel about a Pincer Staff? Basically its a highly useful Kua-Toa exotic weapon that allows you to Grapple anyone within one size category of you as a free action (its described in the MM, and the official stats are in Underdark). It's a lot like a long spear. It's an easy way to add battlefield control to a melee build.

Alternatively, you could use a Ritiik (Frostburn), which is also very spear like exotic weapon. When you hit, the enemy must Save (DC = 10 + damage dealt), or you get a free Trip attempt (and a follow up attack if you have Improved Trip). Not a reach weapon though.

2008-10-21, 06:06 PM
Leviathan hunter is absolutely perfect as a PrC for this. That means at least 1 level of ranger. I think 5 levels of ranger works, gives more favored enemy plus an animal companion (prolly falcon or chordevoc if I go halfling) which is great for distracting the prey. I think the Trophy collector feat is redundant with the Leviathan Hunter. I remember a Home-brew ranger combat style on these boards quite a while ago that gives power attack, so that is a good thing.

For the last 10 levels, I'm thinking swordsage, because the wisdom fits better than intelligence. Plus AC bonus is good.

Edit: Ritiik is also great considering the low Reflex saves of large beasts.

Charlie Kemek
2008-10-21, 07:06 PM
what about a Unarmed Ss (don't have ToB) or monk 2, scout 3, drunken master x, barbarian 5+x (using ranger combat style variant in UA, and then strongarm variant listed above, swift hunter and ascetic hunter feat ((not sure if this works with barbarian, if not, just use ranger, and take a one level dip), and CC variant for pounce)? naturalistic, able to use fists and weapons (and gets drunk a lot :smile:.

2008-10-22, 01:24 AM
OK, here's my "build" (far from optimal, but seems to fit thematically):

1 Ranger Track, Iron Will, Power Attack
2 Fighter Exotic Weapon Proficiency (Greatspear)
3 Fighter Weapon Focus (Greatspear), Improved Unarmed Strike
4 Barbarian [Whirling Frenzy variant]
5 Barbarian
6 Leviathan Hunter Leap Attack
7 Leviathan Hunter
8 Leviathan Hunter Clever Wrestling
9 Leviathan Hunter Extra Rage
10 Leviathan Hunter
11 Reaping Mauler Improved Grapple, Mobility
12 Reaping Mauler Stunning Fist
13 Reaping Mauler
14 Reaping Mauler
15 Reaping Mauler Overwhelming Assault
16 Exotic Weapon Master
17 Exotic Weapon Master
18 Exotic Weapon Master Extra Rage
19 Barbarian
20 Barbarian

2008-10-22, 02:28 AM
Last time I tried this Firefox crashed and ate it, let's hope it works out this time:

Human, Unarmed Swordsage variant:
1. Swordsage 1, Improved Unarmed Strike, Jotunbrud (RoF), Iron Will
2. Swordsage 2
3. Ranger 1, Track, Power Attack
4. Ranger 2, Two-Weapon Fighting style
5. Swordsage 3
6. Swordsage 4, Leap Attack (CV)
7. Leviathan Hunter 1
8. Leviathan Hunter 2
9. Leviathan Hunter 3, Clever Wrestling, Improved Two-Weapon Fighting
10. Leviathan Hunter 4
11. Leviathan Hunter 5
12. Swordsage 5, Superior Unarmed Strike (ToB)
13. Swordsage 6
14. Swordsage 7
15. Swordsage 8, Greater Two-Weapon Fighting
16. Swordsage 9
17. Swordsage 10
18. Swordsage 11, Improved Natural Attack: Unarmed Strike
19. Swordsage 12
20. Swordsage 13

You'll get armor proficiency from Ranger, so Unarmed Swordsage is the way to go. Use a Spear two-handed and make Unarmed Strikes (kicks, elbows, headbutts!) for offhand attacks. It will count as a light offhand weapon for TWF penalties, but you'll still be able to apply Power Attack bonus damage to it. At level 15 you'll be able to get both Dancing Mongoose and Pouncing Charge, which with Leap Attack and Greater TWF will give you a lot of damage in a single charge. Keep in mind, according to WotC you can't ready the same maneuver more than once. Jotunbrud is a regional feat from Races of Faerun, it basically gives you Powerful Build, counting you as Large size when it would be beneficial for opposed checks and when determining if something can use Improved Grab or Swallow Whole on you.

2008-10-22, 07:59 AM
I almost think a refluffed psychic warrior would work, with the use of self buff powers reflecting adrenaline rushes and such. Also you seriously need to take giant killer or whatever the tactical feat is in CW, it fits perfectly.

Also if the only reason you play 3.5 is because of all the classes giving so many possibilities, try a classless system, its so much easier to realize characters in it.