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    Troll in the Playground
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    Apr 2011
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge in the Playground XLIX

    He's riding the Highway To Hell
    Quote Originally Posted by Derek Bragg
    Derek "Baelfire" Bragg


    The Tale of Metal
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    Host: Welcome back to DoomTV. We've got an exciting show planned for you today, with Derek "Baelfire" Bragg, the mind behind the band Midnight Ruin, here to talk about his new album, Everlost, and how he got his start. Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Derek Bragg!

    *Applause as the heavy metal legend flies down onto the set amid pre-recorded strains of the Everlost title track. He folds his wings back and thrusts a fist in the air amidst thunderous applause. Finally, after a few moments, he takes a seat as the cheers subside.*

    Host: That's quite an entrance! We're glad to have you here today. Let's talk about this new album of yours, Everlost. I understand that this album is special to you. Can you tell us a little about that?

    Baelfire: Yeah, as you know Midnight Ruin has been topping the charts since the debut album. Everlost has two new things going for it. This album rocks harder than any album has ever rocked before, and it's cover art.

    Host: Cover art? What's special about it?

    Baelfire: The Lord of Metal himself agreed to appear on the album cover. Everyone knows that Orcus is ****ing Metal as hell, and I dedicated the album to him by naming it after his personal fortress. This is only the second time in history that the big guy has graced an album cover. The first time was Dio's "Master of the Moon" album, and I don't have to remind you just how hardcore that guy was.

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    Orcus recently appeared on the cover of Midnight Ruin's new album


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    Orcus' first album cover appearance


    Host: That's an impressive feat, to be sure. And it seems certain that Midnight Ruin will be remembered in the annals of Metal history. If you wouldn't mind, I'm sure our viewers want to know, how did you get your start in the business?

    Baelfire: Well, it's not something that just anyone can do. I was lucky, I was born with Metal in my soul and a heart blacker than the blackest black times infinity. I knew from an early age that a great destiny lay before me. I started with small gigs here and there, and an agent from the Cult of Orcus heard me playing one night down at a local pub. After that, things really started to fall into place for me. Gigs, money, fame, groupies, you name it. I've never looked back, or regretted a moment of it. I even got inducted into the Cult. What a ****ed up party that was! Music, drugs, I killed a poser on a pile of ****ing skulls, and the groupies ... they weren't just mind-blowing, know what I'm saying?

    Host: Speaking of that night, you've caught more than a little flack from various religious groups about it, haven't you? In fact, the Church of Pelor has publicly denounced you claiming that some of those groupies were ... less than living. How do you respond to that?

    Baelfire: I'll tell you how I respond to that. First: **** you. Second: **** them too. Third: You snort as many lines of powdered cockatrice as I have, you'll **** pretty much anything.

    Host: Ha! Well, that's all we have time for. Thanks for being on our show, and good luck with your new album. Ladies and gentlemen, be sure to pick up Midnight Ruin's new album Everlost! Available in stores October 31st!


    The Technical Crap
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    Derek "Baelfire" Bragg
    Silverbrow Human Bard 3/Warblade 2/Thrall of Orcus 10/Dirgesinger 5
    {table=head]Level|Class|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Skills|Feats|Class Features

    1st|Bard 1|
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |Balance 4, Bluff 4, Concentration 4, Intimidate (2), Knowledge(Arcana) 4, Knowledge(Religion) 4, Perform(Sing) 4, Perform(String Instruments) 4|Evil Brand, Thrall to a Demon|Spellcasting, Bardic Music, Bardic Knowledge, Countersong, Fascinate, Inspire Courage +1

    2nd|Bard 2|
    +1
    |
    +0
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |Balance 5, Bluff 5, Concentration 5, Intimidate (2.5), Knowledge(Arcana) 5, Knowledge(Religion) 5, Perform(Sing) 5, Perform(String Instruments) 5| |

    3rd|Warblade 1|
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |Concentration 6, Intimidate 5.5, Perform(Sing) (6)|Lichloved|Battle Clarity(Reflex Saves), Weapon Aptitude

    4th|Warblade 2|
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |Concentration 7, Intimidate 6.5, Knowledge(Religion) (6), Perform(Sing) (7)| |Uncanny Dodge

    5th|Bard 3|
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |Concentration 8, Intimidate (8), Perform(Sing) 8, Perform(String Instruments) 8| |Inspire Competence

    6th|Thrall of Orcus 1|
    +5
    |
    +6
    |
    +3
    |
    +5
    |Concentration 9, Intimidate 9, Perform(Sing) 9|Dragonfire Inspiration|+1 level of existing spellcasting class, Carrion Stench

    7th|Thrall of Orcus 2|
    +6
    |
    +7
    |
    +3
    |
    +6
    |Concentration 10, Intimidate 10, Perform(Sing) 10| |Touch of Fear

    8th|Thrall of Orcus 3|
    +7
    |
    +7
    |
    +4
    |
    +6
    |Concentration 11, Intimidate 11, Perform(Sing) 11| |Demon Wings

    9th|Thrall of Orcus 4|
    +8
    |
    +8
    |
    +4
    |
    +7
    |Concentration 12, Intimidate 12, Perform(Sing) 12|Martial Study(Insightful Strike)(B), Song of the Heart|Massive Girth, Bonus Feat

    10th|Thrall of Orcus 5|
    +9
    |
    +8
    |
    +4
    |
    +7
    |Concentration 13, Intimidate 13, Perform(Sing) 13| |Summon Minor Undead

    11th|Thrall of Orcus 6|
    +10
    |
    +9
    |
    +5
    |
    +8
    |Concentration 14, Intimidate 14, Perform(Sing) 14| |Pallor of Death

    12th|Thrall of Orcus 7|
    +11
    |
    +9
    |
    +5
    |
    +8
    |Concentration 15, Intimidate 15, Perform(Sing) 15|Willing Deformity(B), Requiem|Demon Wings(at will), Bonus Feat

    13th|Thrall of Orcus 8|
    +12
    |
    +10
    |
    +5
    |
    +9
    |Concentration 16, Intimidate 16, Perform(Sing) 16| |Death Touch

    14th|Thrall of Orcus 9|
    +13
    |
    +10
    |
    +6
    |
    +9
    |Concentration 17, Intimidate 17, Perform(Sing) 17| |Summon Major Undead

    15th|Dirgesinger 1|
    +13
    |
    +10
    |
    +6
    |
    +11
    |Concentration 18, Intimidate 18, Knowledge(Religion) 7, Perform(Sing) 18, Perform(String Instruments) 10|Supernatural Transformation|Song of Sorrow

    16th|Dirgesinger 2|
    +14
    |
    +10
    |
    +6
    |
    +12
    |Concentration 19, Intimidate 19, Knowledge(Religion) 10, Perform(Sing) 19| |Song of Bolstering

    17th|Dirgesinger 3|
    +15
    |
    +11
    |
    +7
    |
    +12
    |Concentration 20, Intimidate 20, Knowledge(Religion) 13, Perform(Sing) 20| |Song of Grief

    18th|Dirgesinger 4|
    +16
    |
    +11
    |
    +7
    |
    +13
    |Concentration 21, Intimidate 21, Knowledge(Religion) 16, Perform(Sing) 21|Ability Focus(Death Touch)|Song of Horror

    19th|Dirgesinger 5|
    +16
    |
    +11
    |
    +7
    |
    +13
    |Concentration 22, Intimidate 22, Knowledge(Religion) 19, Perform(Sing) 22| |Song of Awakening

    20th|Thrall of Orcus 10|
    +17
    |
    +12
    |
    +7
    |
    +14
    |Concentration 23, Intimidate 23, Perform(Sing) (23)|Martial Study (Greater Insightful Strike)(B)|Summon Nightwing, Bonus Feat[/table]

    Stats
    Starting Ability Scores:
    Str - 14
    Dex - 12
    Con - 12
    Int - 14
    Wis - 10
    Cha - 16

    Final Ability Scores:
    Str - 14
    Dex - 12
    Con - 14 (+2 Massive Girth)
    Int - 14
    Wis - 10
    Cha - 21 (5 level increases)


    Spells per day/Spells Known
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    Spells per day
    {table=head]Level|0lvl|1st|2nd|3rd|4th|5th|6th|7th|8th|9th

    1st|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    2nd|3|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    3rd|3|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    4th|3|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    5th|3|1|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    6th|3|2|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    7th|3|2|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    8th|3|2|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    9th|3|2|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    10th|3|2|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    11th|3|2|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    12th|3|2|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    13th|3|2|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    14th|3|2|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    15th|3|2|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    16th|3|2|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    17th|3|2|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    18th|3|2|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    19th|3|2|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    20th|3|2|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-[/table]

    Spells Known
    {table=head]Level|0lvl|1st|2nd|3rd|4th|5th|6th|7th|8th|9th

    1st|4|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    2nd|5|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    3rd|5|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    4th|5|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    5th|6|3|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    6th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    7th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    8th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    9th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    10th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    11th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    12th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    13th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    14th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    15th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    16th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    17th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    18th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    19th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    20th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-[/table]

    0-Level
    Dancing Lights, Detect Magic, Ghost Sound, Message, Prestidigitation, Summon Instrument

    1st Level
    Cause Fear, Inspirational Boost, Undersong

    2nd Level
    Animate Instrument, Master's Touch


    Maneuvers Known
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    Maneuvers
    {table=head]Level|Maneuvers Known|Maneuvers Readied|Stances Known|Special

    1st|-|-|-|

    2nd|-|-|-|Initiator Level: 1

    3rd|3|3|1|Initiator Level: 2

    4th|4|3|1|Initiator Level: 3

    5th|4|3|1|

    6th|4|3|1|Initiator Level: 4

    7th|4|3|1|

    8th|4|3|1|Initiator Level: 5

    9th|5|3|1|

    10th|5|3|1|Initiator Level: 6

    11th|5|3|1|

    12th|5|3|1|Initiator Level: 7

    13th|5|3|1|

    14th|5|3|1|Initiator Level: 8

    15th|5|3|1|

    16th|5|3|1|Initiator Level: 9

    17th|5|3|1|

    18th|5|3|1|Initiator Level: 10

    19th|5|3|1|

    20th|6|3|1|Initiator Level: 11[/table]

    1st
    Moment of Perfect Mind(Diamond Mind), Sapphire Nightmare Blade(Diamond Mind), Stone Bones(Stone Dragon), Leading the Charge Stance(White Raven)

    2nd
    Action Before Thought(Diamond Mind)

    3rd
    Insightful Strike(Diamond Mind)

    6th
    Greater Insightful Strike(Diamond Mind)


    What it Means to be Metal
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    Level 5
    "Feel the danger, see the glory."

    Baelfire is a badass musician, but mostly undiscovered at this point in his career. The power of Metal flows through his veins, and he can inspire audiences (allies) to kick some ass, or rock the **** out with Bardic Music and Leading the Charge. He's no stranger to violence, either. He can dish out the pain and take it with Sapphire Nightmare Blade and Stone Bones. His bardic spells are all highly useful to him. His 0-level spells ensure he puts on a stage performance for the ages, and Summon Instrument means he can always call his guitar from the depths of hell if he needs to educate the stupid masses in the ways of Metal. It also means he can smash his guitar across some poser's face, free of charge. Cause Fear, coupled with his Intimidate skill (and boosted by Evil Brand) means that only those with Metal in their hearts can deal with his brutal presence (and Cause Fear is a Necromancy spell). Inspirational Boost is there for when he wants to crank his performance up to 11, and Undersong allows him to Unleash The Metal on his foes later on. For now, Undersong lets him use his performance skill instead of concentration for the save maneuvers to deflect harmful spells and shake of mind controlling effects of The Man with The Power of Metal.

    He's at home smashing face with a greataxe, or shredding on his ax.

    Level 10
    "Hear the thunder of heavy metal."

    Metal, noise, blood, and fire, tell me what you most desire. Baelfire has now dedicated himself to Orcus, the most Metal demon lord around. There are several high points here. The addition of Dragonfire Inspiration, Song of the Heart, and 2nd level spells means that Baelfire can drape his audience with the tools of destruction. Animate Instrument means that he can double down on his Bardic Music to get both Dragonfire Inspiration and Inspire Courage going at the same time, and keep them up for as long as needed. Song of the Heart increases Baelfire's Inspire Courage bonus, making it even more Metal. Baelfire has also learned one of the secrets of Metal. Similar to the save maneuvers, Insightful Strike (readied instead of Stone Bones) lets him substitute the damage roll for an attack with a Concentration skill check, and Undersong lets him substitute a Perform check any time he would make a Concentration skill check. That means Baelfire can now rock so hard, he can kill his enemies by Unleashing the Metal. This usage is also the only time he calls on his patron for aid, as Thrall to a Demon can give him a 1/day boost to a skill check, and the Master's Touch spell can bump that up to a total +5. The benefits don't stop there, Summon Minor Undead gives him his own bodyguards or bandmates, Touch of Fear frees up his spells for more Inspirational Boosts or Undersongs, and Carrion Stench makes the stupid masses more susceptible to his Fascinate ability, as well as weakening those who don't have The Metal in their veins. A number of physical changes have happened to Baelfire, as his connection to The Metal grows stronger, he begins to look more like his patron. He sprouts demonic wings, and his body swells as it tries to contain the power inside.

    Level 15 "Sweet Spot"
    "I will crank you up, you can't bring me down."

    Baelfire's career continues to skyrocket. Pallor of Death gives Baelfire quick access to stage makeup, or a quick disguise if he wants to avoid being mobbed by lame groupies. His physical changes are now complete, as he has demonic wings whenever he wants them, and the Willing Deformity feat means that the power that has bloated his form now strengthens his body, and provides an extra boost to his Intimidate skill. Orcus has granted him two incredible abilities, Death Touch and Summon Major Undead. Death Touch is potent in his hands, and has two very significant boosts by this point. The first is that it is now an (Su) ability and not subject to SR, thanks to Supernatural Transformation. The second is the Doomspeak feat (-10 to saves), which is possessed by the ghost or vampire Bard that Baelfire summons with Summon Major Undead. Between these two boosts (and a further -2 to saves from Carrion Stench), it is highly unlikely that anything that can be affected by Death Touch will survive it. Requiem gives Baelfire the ability to rock so hard that the undead take notice, and Song of Sorrow provides provides additional debuffing, should it be necessary.

    Level 20
    "Metal will never die."

    Baelfire's black heart now pumps The Metal through his veins. It has become his lifesblood. He is now capable of shredding such a sweet solo, he can cause the dead to rise from their very graves and rock out. Baelfire has picked up Ability Focus, to make his Death Touch even more unstoppable, and Greater Insightful Strike to annihilate his foes with pure Metal. Dirgesinger provides him with some much need extra Bardic Music uses, as well as a host of brutal new songs. The Song of Bolstering helps keep his undead groupies in the fight. Song of Grief gives some ample crowd control. Song of Horror gives some further debuffing power, and the awesome Song of Awakening raises the dead, as well as raising hell. His high BAB means he can curbstomp posers all night long. Lastly, Orcus grants him the use of an awesome Nightwing once per week. While Baelfire usually uses the Nightwing as a tour bus to travel between gigs, he also employs it to wreak death and destruction. Its aura further bolsters his other summoned undead, and it is capable of bringing for its own minions, or throwing out a Greater Dispel Magic or Finger of Death. Truly, Derek "Baelfire" Bragg is a heavy metal legend.


    Inspiration
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    Player's Handbook (Bard)
    Libris Mortis (Dirgesinger, Requiem)
    Tome of Battle (Maneuvers, Warblade, Martial Study)
    Dragon Magic (Dragonfire Inspiration)
    Book of Vile Darkness (Willing Deformity)
    Eberron Campaign Setting (Song of the Heart)
    Champions of Ruin (Doomspeak)
    Monster Manual (Ability Focus)
    Savage Species (Supernatural Transformation)
    Spell Compendium (Inspirational Boost, Master's Touch, Undersong)
    Complete Scoundrel (Animate Instrument)