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    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default [D&D3.5] Exstalt

    Apparently, a bunch of people are trying out tristalt so I thought to myself "Why stop there?". Introducing....

    EXSTALT

    INTRO
    Exstalt is a homebrew modification to D&D 3.5, in the vein of gestalt. The rules replace the normal 3.5 multiclass rules in such a way to allow nearly limitless variation. It is compatible with 3.5 with very little modification and GM oversight.

    THE RULES
    Page 22 of the Player's Handbook describes the XP required for each level. In this variant, however, the player "spends" XP to gain a level. So far, this is no different than normal D&D, though presented in a different format. However, they could also buy a level in a new class. (To prevent the obvious abuse, subsequent levels in a class always cost at least 1,000 XP.) Each individual class levels gestalt with all class levels at the same level.

    Concrete example:
    Mark is playing a Fighter 1. He just gained 1,000 XP, so he decides to buy a second level of Fighter and become a Fighter 2. Later, he gains another 1,000 XP and decides to buy a level in Sorcerer. He is now a Fighter 2//Sorcerer 1. His BAB is +2, Base Fortitude is +3, Base Reflex is +0, and Base Will is +2.

    There are some important subtleties to note. First, you only gain feats gained from level advancement once. Similarly, while each level advancement gets you skill points, every subsequent level in the same level only gets you half skill points (round down, minimum of 1).

    Continuing example:
    Mark's Fighter/Sorcerer has an intelligence of 12 and is human. He gains 1,000 XP and buys a second level of Sorcerer. Since he already has Fighter 2, he only gains half the normal number of skill points. In this case, that would be 2 - (2 base + 1 Int mod + 1 )/2. Mark gains 3,000 XP and decides to continue advancing Sorcerer. He gains the full number of skill points - 4 - and gains a new feat. If he later increases his Fighter level to 3, he would get half skill points and no new feat.

    Prestige classes are no exception to the rules. The 1st level of a PrC is treated the same as the 1st level in a base class. While this does produce some oddities, it makes other things (such as keeping track of when exactly a PrC was gained) simpler.

    Prestige classes that advance features are a weird bunch. Your GM might just disallow them. One option is to not let them advance the feature higher than the highest class level. Another option is to not let a single level advance a feature more than one level e.g. 1st level might advance Wizard spellcasting by 1 level, but never by 2 levels.

    It is highly suggested that HP is non-random. Each level uses the best HP.

    VARIANT VARIANTS
    E6-Exstalt: For those who love high-powered low-powered games. E6, for those who don't know, is a variant where you don't level past 6th level. There are options for buying additional feats and the like. This variant variant is like E6, except that you can also buy levels in other classes, like Exstalt, at any point.



    What do you guys think? I hope that it's clear enough. I think the biggest problem is that the CR system is completely and hopelessly messed-up. Not that I wouldn't mind losing CR (it's pretty clunky), but some people like it.
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    Default Re: [D&D3.5] Exstalt

    Interesting idea, although all it will result in is that casters will have a larger gap between them and the mundanes, because this results in the multiclass mundanes having less feats, less skill points and less Hp.
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    Default Re: [D&D3.5] Exstalt

    Indeed. If I used this variant (it's actually a lot more intriguing than traditional gestalt) I would introduce differing XP advancement tables for each Tier such that the lower your Tier the cheaper your class levels.

    In fact it could be even more interesting to separate the notion of Character Level from Class Level in a new way.

    It would be a more extensive variant, but the idea would be that some basic statistics (like level feats, ability bonuses, etc) would be determined by Character Level, while all other things would be determined by your gestalted Class Levels.

    I think I might have to start a new thread for this, actually, it's getting to be a pretty ambitious variant.
    Last edited by Ziegander; 2011-08-27 at 03:51 PM.
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    Default Re: [D&D3.5] Exstalt

    Prestige Classes also need checked. Say I get to Wizard 5 and then pick up a whole bunch of PrC dips that advance casting for 1000 xp. I'm way more powerful than if I were to advance as a wizard, which is already very high powered.
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    Default Re: [D&D3.5] Exstalt

    I like this idea. Though the base pricing and the way PrCs that advance class features could do with some work.

    My ideas (just roughly):
    Each Gestalt may have 2 PrCs in it that stack features with the base class.
    Base Class Pricing is 1,200XP -100*(Tier-1)
    Prestige Pricing would be similar to Base Class (probably)

    So if I had a Fighter5//Wizard5/PrC1 and wanted to add a Monk Level I would have F5//W5/PrC1//M1 but if I wanted to add *Wiz PrC#2* it would be F5//W5/PrC1/Prc1
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    Default Re: [D&D3.5] Exstalt

    But what would happen if he wanted to add true-namer?

    Seriously though, I think this exstalt idea is kinda awesome. And while I don't normally like the idea of pricing different tiers separately I think it makes a lot of sense in this case (though it could have some interesting results at character creation). I also like the idea of having a separate character level and class level.

    That said I don't really like limiting the number of prcs a character can take, instead I'd suggest the following:
    1. No combination of classes and/or prcs may advance a feature beyond character level.
    2. A prc which advances a class feature costs either the normal amount to purchase a prc of that level or as if it were 1/2 the level it is advancing the feature to, whichever is greater.
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    Default Re: [D&D3.5] Exstalt

    Quote Originally Posted by Hazzardevil View Post
    Interesting idea, although all it will result in is that casters will have a larger gap between them and the mundanes, because this results in the multiclass mundanes having less feats, less skill points and less Hp.
    Good point. In many ways, feats, skill points, and HP are the class features of mundane classes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ziegander View Post
    Indeed. If I used this variant (it's actually a lot more intriguing than traditional gestalt) I would introduce differing XP advancement tables for each Tier such that the lower your Tier the cheaper your class levels.

    In fact it could be even more interesting to separate the notion of Character Level from Class Level in a new way.

    It would be a more extensive variant, but the idea would be that some basic statistics (like level feats, ability bonuses, etc) would be determined by Character Level, while all other things would be determined by your gestalted Class Levels.
    Actually, there's a pretty easy way to do it. Basically, you just use a different XP advancement table for character level, which is based off total XP. Each character would have two XP-related pieces of information - total XP and available XP. Available XP can be spent purchasing class levels while total XP determines your character level.

    If you limit class levels to a max of character level, by varying the rate of character level advancement you can change whether you want to encourage deep classes or wide classes. For instance, imagine if we kept the same rate of class level advancement but it took 10,000 total XP to get to the 2nd character level. Obviously, you would have characters with a bunch of different class levels. On the other hand, if you only needed 1,000 total XP to get to the 2nd character level, you'd get characters with fewer (or, at least, encourage fewer classes).

    Quote Originally Posted by tonberrian View Post
    Prestige Classes also need checked. Say I get to Wizard 5 and then pick up a whole bunch of PrC dips that advance casting for 1000 xp. I'm way more powerful than if I were to advance as a wizard, which is already very high powered.
    Nope.

    Say you have a Wizard 5. They have 5th level wizard casting. Each level already gives him +1 Wizard casting. Adding an advancement PrC does nothing.
    {table="head;width=400"]Level|Wizard|Some PrC|Casting Level
    1|X|X|+1
    2|X|-|+1
    3|X|-|+1
    4|X|-|+1
    5|X|-|+1
    [/table]

    Now, if they get that PrC to 6th level, it will start advancing:
    {table="head;width=400"]Level|Wizard|Some PrC|Casting Level
    1|X|X|+1
    2|X|X|+1
    3|X|X|+1
    4|X|X|+1
    5|X|X|+1
    6|-|X|+1
    [/table]
    This greatly reduces the utility of full advancement PrCs which, I think, is a good thing. There's a bunch of PrCs out there that are pretty interesting except that you lose too many caster levels for it to be an optimized choice.

    Quote Originally Posted by DragonOfUndeath View Post
    My ideas (just roughly):
    Each Gestalt may have 2 PrCs in it that stack features with the base class.
    Base Class Pricing is 1,200XP -100*(Tier-1)
    Prestige Pricing would be similar to Base Class (probably)
    Quote Originally Posted by Epsilon Rose View Post
    Seriously though, I think this exstalt idea is kinda awesome. And while I don't normally like the idea of pricing different tiers separately I think it makes a lot of sense in this case (though it could have some interesting results at character creation). I also like the idea of having a separate character level and class level.
    Yeah, I normally don't like pricing tiers as well, but it might work in this case.

    Currently, the rate of advancement in standard D&D is given by:
    XP_n = XP_(n-1) + c * (n-1)
    where XP is the required XP, n is the level you're advancing to, and c is 1000. For example, going from level 2 to level 3 looks like this:
    XP_n = XP_(n-1) + c * (n-1)
    XP_3 = XP_2 + 1000 * 2
    XP_3 = 1000 + 20000 = 3000

    Now, let's say that we made c be equal to 1600 - ((Tier - 1)*100).

    TIER 1 ADVANCEMENT TO LEVEL 10
    {table="head;width=200"]Level|XP
    1|0
    2|1500
    3|4500
    4|9000
    5|15000
    6|22500
    7|31500
    8|42000
    9|54000
    10|67500
    [/table]

    B]TIER 6 ADVANCEMENT TO LEVEL 10[/B]
    {table="head;width=200"]Level|XP
    10
    2|1000
    3|3000
    4|6000
    5|10000
    6|15000
    7|21000
    8|28000
    9|36000
    10|45000
    [/table]

    Obviously, you could vary exactly how much to make c to get the advancement that feels right.

    [NOTE: After I wrote the above, I realized that since we're "spending" XP, than I really shouldn't include the previous cost i.e. that it should just be c * (n-1). Oh well. ]

    Now, going to back to what Hazzarddevil said, this is still going to leave us with lower HP, skill points, and feats for the mundane-focused classes. An elegant solution is needed, but I can't think of one right now.

    Quote Originally Posted by Epsilon Rose View Post
    That said I don't really like limiting the number of prcs a character can take, instead I'd suggest the following:
    1. No combination of classes and/or prcs may advance a feature beyond character level.
    2. A prc which advances a class feature costs either the normal amount to purchase a prc of that level or as if it were 1/2 the level it is advancing the feature to, whichever is greater.
    First, your first point is already in the rules. I just don't think that I made it clear enough.

    How about this: PrCs can be bought at a level other than 1st level and must be bought at a class level where all the prerequisites are met by the character. For instance, consider a Wizard 5//Fighter 1 buying a level in Eldritch Knight. Eldritch Knight requires 3rd-level arcane casting and proficiency with all martial weapons. When the character purchases a class level in Eldritch Knight, it costs the equivalent of a 6th class level. For ease of use, you would write the character's class levels like this: Wizard 5//Fighter 1//Eldritch Knight (5)+1.

    Now, this does mean that PrCs that require multiple abilities (such as, say, Wizard and Cleric casting in the case of Mystic Theurge) can get early entry by a few levels. This could lead to very weird advancement.
    Last edited by TooManySecrets; 2011-08-28 at 02:58 PM.
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