2012-03-17, 12:31 PM (ISO 8601)
Re: There's archers, and then there's THIS.
I did indeed choose Souldrinking and Marrowcrushing over Wounding and Enervating because of the critical hits... on a normal weapon (crits on a 20), that translated to 2 "guaranteed" criticals with 40+ attacks. And because I like the BoVD
Welcome to D&D and the forums, where monsters of character optimization lie (although the Char-Op isn't as terrifying here is at was on Brilliant Gameologists). Your class is looking much better now that munchkins like me can't have a field day. Rain of Arrows retains its to-hit roll still, which lets it carry "rider" effects like Wounding/Marrowcrushing/etc, even if Evasion would let you ignore the damage from it. I agree with MammonAzrael that you should read the volley rules from Heroes of Battle and make it available earlier (if you decide to use those rules). Sniping still needs a bit of fixing... the raw damage is still a tad high (most optimizers go dumpster diving for classes, feats, and weapons from different books to get damage like that). Your thoughts and ideas are in the right place, though, so I eagerly await the finished product of this class. I've always liked archers, but I've always found myself asking, "Why would I play an archery-focused fighter/ranger/rogue when I can just play a ray-focused wizard or a DMM archer cleric?"
(DMM is Divine Metamagic from Complete Divine, spend turning attempts for free metamagic, often paired with Persistent Spell from Complete Arcane)
Also, as a sidenote, so that I might not offend people, my way of judging homebrew is to try to break it as much as possible (disregarding pun-pun, infinite wishes, etc), and then compare it to previous, "official" builds like Cindy, the mailman, Lester the Molester, etc. to determine where it fits in the WotC power continuum. IMO most should land in the middle of the spectrum (Tier 3 if you use JaronK's system), and I try to offer suggestions to put the class in that general area.