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Thread: Red Suns Burn It All Down! [PrC]

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    DragoonWraith's Avatar

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    Apr 2009

    Default Re: Red Suns Burn It All Down! [PrC]

    Quote Originally Posted by Milskidasith View Post
    I don't understand why a casting class loses points in its key ability and gets absolutely no focus on the spellcasting side. It just doesn't make sense.
    Yeah, I had missed that in my initial skim - I have to say, I don't think Twisted Thoughts is all that good an idea. I really do like the name Burning Clarity, however.

    Actually, I'm going to just do a full PEACH, it'll help make sure I haven't missed anything:

    Scion of the Fury Entity
    As noted above, the name is a mouthful. I don't really like it. It's also really weird that rage, which strikes me as an amazingly real emotion, has as its source the Far Realms; that doesn't really make sense to me. Fury is understandable, even simple - things the Far Realms should never be, IMO.

    Barring those issues, though, the intro is awesome and I really like it. The writing is superb and the idea is great.

    Prerequisites - BAB +5 is quite high, but Divine classes often get 3/4 BAB so that should be fine. Intimidate makes sense, though only 6 ranks seems odd. The feats make sense, though Extend Rage seems to me to be something that you'll rarely need; Extra Rage seems like it would be better. Religious requirements are usually done in a Special section (as in, Special: Must worship the Fury Entity as his/her deity.), but that's hardly an issue. Requiring those specific spells sucks for a spontaneous caster, who usually isn't going to take those; not sure if that's intended but I'd consider revisiting that. 2nd level spells is fine, though. Requiring a Domain is somewhat tricky, but hardly unusual or even all that problematic. You might, however, consider allowing them to qualify by being able to cast, say, two spells from the Domain, a la Walker in the Waste.

    Class Features
    Skills, HD, BAB, Saves - d8 seems really low for any Barbarian PrC, caster or not. Lack of a Will save is... somewhat odd, seeing as Rage generally benefits Will, rather than hinders it... but really, this is all fine. The Skill list is a bit sparse, though. Don't really have any suggestions though.

    Spellcasting - OK, you've now certainly lost 3 spellcasting levels; spontaneous casters no longer have 9ths, and prepared casters have nearly lost theirs... Quite a serious loss. I haven't fully reviewed everything, but I'm tempted to suggest that they get the level 1 spellcasting back.

    Rage - As expected, looks fine.

    Twisted Thoughts - As I mentioned above, and Milski has referenced a few times, this is problematic. It's... sort of flavorful, but it's a huge penalty and the mechanics of the class don't justify it, not when most Divine casters, including the presumably expected entry, use Wis as the casting stat.

    This was bad on the Alienist, a PrC for classes that typically use Wis as a dump stat and had a good Will save progression to boot; on a class that probably has Wis as its main stat, and has a poor Will save, this is awful. I really think you need to come up with something else here. Probably a benefit rather than a drawback, honestly; 1st level is really hurting for features here.

    Burning Clarity - I just love the name of this, though. Excellent choice there.

    Red Sun Vengeance - Uhhh... so this feature gets harder to use the higher your level gets? And it's permanent? And has massive roleplaying ramifications that are apparently mechanically beyond the player's control? I don't know how wise this is. Extra damage against foes who have harmed you - cool. Inability to ever look past that and help them no matter how much it is beneficial to you? Not cool. The wording suggests that you should be able to ("at least make them suffer" implies that once they've 'suffered' you might be able to help them out, but there's no rules for this that overrule the initial rule stating that you cannot help them). I get the fluff here, but it's over-the-top, I think. Too much designer dictating how the class is played, IMO.

    My suggestion is to just stick to extra damage, and probably penalties to Bluff and Diplomacy or something when dealing with them. Going beyond that seems problematic, IMO.

    Breath of Fury - This seems like it could progress more evenly - say, 10d6 damage plus 1d6 for every level beyond 3rd? Would still equal 15d6 at 8th, but it would scale in between and beyond that, and I think that would be good. Otherwise, flavorful and fitting.

    Cracked Mind - Neat feature, nice name for it.

    Rage Renewed - Uhm... it's really really really rare for Rage to need extending. Not many battle last more than 3 rounds, much less the, I dunno, 12 rounds the average Rage lasts. Plus you already have Extended Rage. I don't see this ability ever being used.

    Burning Body - What's a "run-sun"? Anyway, that half-fire/half-hatred thing should probably be applied to the breath weapon, and anyway, this is pretty cool. Might say it also applies to people in your space, regardless of why they're that, and potentially against those who make unarmed/natural weapon attacks against you.

    Shattered Mind - Nice, nice. It's a good feature.

    Claws of the Eternity - Neat - weird image, but neat.

    Blood Burning Rage - This might be better done by burning spell slots, just to give some synergy between the two. Still, cool feature. If you stay with Ability Damage, you should apply standard blurbs about not being able to mitigate the damage without preventing the effect.

    Furious Incarnation - The caveats on the size increases (maximum size, lack of ability score changes) seem odd. I mean, you're probably around level 17, and this is... Bull's Strength plus Enlarge Person? Sure, it stacks with Enlarge Person, and it's both as a free action, but I'm really not overly impressed here.

    The Frightening Presence and Natural Armor are better, but still a bit disappointing.

    Mind of Beyond - Very cool, this I rather like, from a flavor perspective. For mechanics, it's powerful but extremely circumstantial; it's entirely possible that this will never come up.

    Conclusion - Twisted Thoughts ruins the class by itself. That one feature is a massive problem.

    Even ignoring that, you lose two spellcasting levels for immunity to insanity effects (not that common), a decent bonus to mind-affecting effects (much more common but it's no Mind Blank), a breath weapon (nice-ish), extra damage to those that hurt you (but become unable to control your character with respect to those characters....), some natural attacks (quite nice, honestly, but...), some more extra damage but only by taking Con damage (still quite nice), a size increase and a bonus to Str, and finally, the chance to make people who read your mind insane. A sizable collection of flavorful and occasionally useful features, but it's not three spellcasting levels worth.

    Honestly, the class could probably be full-casting. You've already lost a spellcasting level to Barbarian, that's probably enough to justify this, even without the major problems (Twisted Thoughts and Red Sun Vengeance). Even as a full-caster, though, you don't really synergize well between your spellcasting, and every other class feature you have. Better synergy might justify a lost level or two, which is certainly aesthetically more pleasing than a Barbarian PrC with full-casting kind of tacked on there.

    All that aside, it's an interesting, flavorful class. It's exceptionally well-written and does an excellent job of consistently reinforcing its own theme. I still like it, despite the problems.
    Last edited by DragoonWraith; 2010-07-13 at 11:17 PM.