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    Inevitability's Avatar

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    Feb 2014
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment Thread IV: Live Free or Hit Die Hard

    Golem, Cadaver


    Another monster to continue the book's delightful trend of 'guess what type this is'. The name gives away these are constructs, but I could easily see people mistake those for undead based solely on the description.

    Let's start with the worst part: 10 construct HD. 3/4th BAB could be worse, and d10 HD is pretty good, but the lack of skills and saving throws are very annoying.

    Cadaver golems are Large, with ogre-level strength and average or slightly above-average scores in all other stats. They have a considerable amount of natural armor (+10), as well as DR 5/adamantine, giving them at least some defenses to make up for their lack of a constitution modifier (30 bonus HP are decent at ECL 10, but they steadily drop in quality). Speed is average.

    Fortunately, these guys can explicitly wield weapons! Sadly, by RAW they're only proficient with bastard swords, meaning a level or feat tax is required for them to be actually competent warriors.

    A cadaver golem's most interesting ability is Assimilate Flesh, which allows it to stitch others' body parts to itself. This way, the golem can heal damage (useful, as it is otherwise unable to do so), swap skill ranks around (again, very useful if you regularly face skillful opponents), and possibly gain access to supernatural or extraordinary abilities. The last part is especially interesting, as it allows your golem to have stuff like Cunning Brilliance or Island In Time. You could even decide to abandon being a construct (while RAW keeping your construct traits), by taking something like Alien Transcendence.

    Most of the really overpowered stuff (like spellcasting) is unavailable, so I'm not sure if an asterisk is required here.

    Finally, there's the standard golem magic immunity, with the catches being that cadaver golems get Slowed by healing spells (problematic, as those are common), while a Regenerate spell damages them and locks special abilities away for a while.

    So what LA to give? I'm leaning either towards a +0 (or maybe +1) if Assimilate Flesh is considered balanced, and -0* if it's not. For now I'll go with +0, but I'm very interested in how the community feels about this.
    Last edited by Inevitability; 2018-03-19 at 04:05 AM.
    Have you had enough of unreasonably high LA's and unplayable monsters in 3.5? Then check out the LA-assignment thread! Don't hesitate to give feedback!

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