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    Default Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    I based the master sniper off the cragtop archer class from Races of Stone, placing more emphasis on hiding than climbing, and removing the mountain theme. As far as power goes, I'm aiming for something slightly stronger than the ranger (it is a PrC, after all). Does it look good, or does it need more?

    There's not a lot of fluff for this class, because it can fit in pretty much any setting where one can shoot down their enemies while hiding far away. I may make some more fluff later, if the powers that be (GitP) demand it of me, (especially if you guys give me some help).

    There are plenty of master snipers in my Breakdown setting, of course. I plan to make footnotes for every class in Breakdown, detailing the changes made for using them in the setting. But first I need to work out said changes (magic rules, new skills ,ect).

    Master Sniper
    Anyone who picks off targets from a distance can claim the title of sniper, but only the best can rightfully call themselves a master sniper. These elite marksmen strike from a great distance, leaving so sign of their presence save the lifeless bodies of their foes.
    Hit Dice: D8

    Requirements:
    To qualify to become a master sniper, a character must fulfill all the following criteria.
    Base Attack Bonus: +6
    Skills: Hide 5 Ranks, Spot 10 Ranks
    Feats: Able Sniper (RotW), Far Shot, Precise Shot

    Class Skills:
    Balance (Dex), Climb (Str), Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Hide (Dex), Jump (Str), Knowledge (Nature) (Int), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Profession (Wis), Search (Int), Spot (Wis), Survival (Wis), Swim (Str)
    Skill Points at Each Level: 4 + Int modifier

    A master sniper further hones their already keen vision and accuracy with ranged weaponry.

    Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Master snipers gain no proficiency with any weapons or armor.

    Trained Eyes (Ex): Master snipers hone their visual acuity to an uncanny degree of skill. A master sniper suffers only half the normal penalty on his Spot checks because of distance (-1 per 20 feet of distance, rather than -1 per 10 feet). In addition, a master sniper takes only half the normal penalty on ranged attacks per range increment (-1 per range increment, rather than -2).

    Vigilant (Ex): Vigilance becomes second nature to master snipers. A master sniper can make a Spot check each round as a free action.

    Higher Ground Advantage (Ex):
    Beginning at 2nd level, a master sniper gains a +2 bonus on attack and damage rolls when making a ranged attack from higher ground than the target.

    Clear Shot (Ex): A master sniper learns how to take advantage of a clear line of sight in order to hit virtually any targets beyond the reach of most snipers. At 3rd level a master sniper can fire a projectile weapon up to fifteen range increments rather than the normal ten range increments, provided he aims at a target to which he has a completely unobstructed view. This means the master sniper must have line of sight to the target, who must not have the benefit of cover or concealment.

    Distance Shot (Ex): From 4th level on, a master sniper can seemingly hit any target within sight, no matter how far away. As a full-round action, the master sniper can make a single attack with a projectile weapon. This attack is made with no penalty for range, though it still has the same maximum range as a normal attack by the master sniper. This ability can be used in conjunction with any ability that extends the range of a projectile weapon, such as the Far Shot feat or the Clear Shot ability.

    Spot the Gap (Ex): As a standard action, you can attempt to find a weak point in a visible targetís armor. This requires a Spot check against a DC equal to your targetís Armor Class. If you succeed, your next attack ranged against that target (which must be made no later than your next turn) is a touch attack.

    Master Sniper
    {table=head]Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special

    1st|
    +1
    |
    +2
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    Trained eyes, vigilant

    2nd|
    +2
    |
    +3
    |
    +0
    |
    +1
    |
    Higher ground advantage

    3rd|
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    Clear shot

    4th|
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    Distance shot

    5th|
    +5
    |
    +4
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    Spot the gap
    [/table]
    Last edited by TabletopNuke; 2010-01-30 at 05:38 PM.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Spot the gap might as well say touch attack.

    I don't know...there isn't really a theme of hiding at all. In fact, it discourages hiding with clear shot, unless you have hide in plain sight.

    It only has d8 hit dice (-1 hp on average compared to ranger), 4 + Int skills per level (-2 per level versus ranger), and some ranged abilities the ranger doesn't get, but are made up for with spells and animal companion advancement, as well as melee prowess.

    The class, as a whole, seems kind of weak, other than the touch attack, and that only applies on one attack, and it takes a standard action, eliminating the possibility of attacking in the same round (unless you're a factotum or something).

    EDIT: Higher ground advantage needs to be bold and spaced from the ability above it. Also, +2 damage isn't much. That's Weapon Specialization (ew) when on higher ground (situational). Maybe +2 attack and +2 damage, or +1 attack, +4 damage. That way, at least the archer can get some really tangible difference in being on higher ground (other than having clear shot be more effective because of the possibly heightened sight).
    Last edited by Temotei; 2010-01-30 at 12:06 AM.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    I don't have the energy to read this right now, but I want to point out something I almost mentioned regarding another sniper class a long time in the past... (then I realized the class had UMD, and the range on a key spell is Long).

    Military sniping, as it it exists in the real world, would be a JOKE in D&D... Quite simply if you don't have some sort of follow-up magic, the time and effort you put into killing a single individual with a sniper shot is a complete waste of time at higher levels... revivication magic means if you don't at least burn the person's corpse to ash, maybe scatter the ashes, and, in extreme cases, cast Trap the Soul, you have merely cost the opposing force some cash.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Quote Originally Posted by Temotei221 View Post
    Spot the gap might as well say touch attack.
    Kay. I'll go fix that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Temotei221 View Post
    I don't know...there isn't really a theme of hiding at all. In fact, it discourages hiding with clear shot, unless you have hide in plain sight.
    Discourages hiding? How so? I guess I could make hide in plain sight a class feature. What level would you recommend, and what should it replace?

    Quote Originally Posted by Temotei221 View Post
    It only has d8 hit dice (-1 hp on average compared to ranger), 4 + Int skills per level (-2 per level versus ranger), and some ranged abilities the ranger doesn't get, but are made up for with spells and animal companion advancement, as well as melee prowess.

    The class, as a whole, seems kind of weak, other than the touch attack, and that only applies on one attack, and it takes a standard action, eliminating the possibility of attacking in the same round (unless you're a factotum or something).
    The ranger has d8 HD. What else would you suggest I do to help beef the class up?

    Quote Originally Posted by Temotei221 View Post
    EDIT: Higher ground advantage needs to be bold and spaced from the ability above it. Also, +2 damage isn't much. That's Weapon Specialization (ew) when on higher ground (situational). Maybe +2 attack and +2 damage, or +1 attack, +4 damage. That way, at least the archer can get some really tangible difference in being on higher ground (other than having clear shot be more effective because of the possibly heightened sight).
    I'll go fix that. I can change the higher ground feature to +2 attack and +2 damage.

    Quote Originally Posted by DracoDei View Post
    I don't have the energy to read this right now, but I want to point out something I almost mentioned regarding another sniper class a long time in the past... (then I realized the class had UMD, and the range on a key spell is Long).

    Military sniping, as it it exists in the real world, would be a JOKE in D&D... Quite simply if you don't have some sort of follow-up magic, the time and effort you put into killing a single individual with a sniper shot is a complete waste of time at higher levels... revivication magic means if you don't at least burn the person's corpse to ash, maybe scatter the ashes, and, in extreme cases, cast Trap the Soul, you have merely cost the opposing force some cash.
    I suppose that's where fancy magic weapons and the like come into play. It wouldn't be difficult to come up with magic ammunition that reduces the target to ash if the attack kills the target.

    Also, keep in mind that this class can be completed by 11th level, leaving the character to purse another prestige class if they desire. Also, it's still a melee class, at high levels, it's not going to hold it's own against magic.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Your capstone is available as a feat called Deft Strike in Complete Adventurer. It's not that great of a feat due to the action cost.

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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    I just made the changes mentioned in the post above (sorry it took so long).
    Quote Originally Posted by Glimbur View Post
    Your capstone is available as a feat called Deft Strike in Complete Adventurer. It's not that great of a feat due to the action cost.
    What would you suggest I add to help with the capstone level? Hide in plain sight?

    By the way, that avatar is awesome.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Useful things for a sniper include: Hide in Plain Sight, bonus damage, ignoring concealment/miss chance, and a lack of need for sleep. The last is kind of unimpressive as a capstone... perhaps allow a meditation that takes a minute, and as long as you don't leave that spot you don't need to sleep and ignore concealment to your target? Of course, that's also doable with a Seeking bow and is only a little better than a Ring of Sustenance.

    The capstone you have, but as a swift action, would be interesting. Consider throwing on some bonus damage (class level * dex mod, which should be between 20 and 50) and making it usable a couple of times per encounter.

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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    I'm not sure what to do for a capstone, but most of the class abilities remind me of the Cragtop Archer PrC from Races of Stone, which is also five levels long.

    EDIT: Bah, I somehow missed how you were drawing inspiration from the Cragtop Archer. My bad.
    Last edited by Thrice Dead Cat; 2010-01-30 at 06:11 PM.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Well, presently the class lacks kill power. Unless your guns are going to be REALLY deadly off the bat, this has limited itself neatly to being a spellcaster only class, weird as that is...

    On the need for body disposal, that's not too hard. Oxyphosphor gel bullets would be basically alchemist's fire and would burn unhindered reducing the body to skeleton and ash without incident. That puts you at Ressurrection territory already

    What the class actually needs is some reward for actually using the sniping mechanic in the Hide skill description: bonus damage is a good one or a SoD effect. I went for the former but in normal D&D, there's no good reason for it not to be SoD, basically ranged Death Attack, which, let's face it, is what most people think of when they hear about snipers.

    Using Death Attack as a mould, let's see...

    • 11th level character.
    • Must remain hidden for 4 rounds
    • Must keep the target in sight for 4 rounds
    • Must hit the Flatfooted target successfully
    • Attack must actually deal damage
    • Target gets a Fortitude save to negate

    That's a lot of chances for the effect to be negated, roughly 9 more chances for the target to survive than the Finger of Death spell that is available two levels from then...from my POV, seriously...call that unbalanced! If anything, i'd call it weak for 5 level's work.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    I'm trying to keep melee classes distinctly non-supernatural. However, this brings up the issue of melee vs magic unbalance at higher levels.

    The class does require a feat that is useless for the build (Point Blank Shot, a prerequisite for several necessary feats), so I suppose that would help justify making the class a little more powerful. I could move the class down a level (reduce the BAB requirement to +5, and the Spot requirement to 8 ranks, and add in 8 ranks of Hide), making it top off at level 10. This also allows the character to take full advantage of the standard 10-level PrC afterwords.

    Also, I don't want to make the class simply something that people take to get ranger abilities faster (camouflage, [normally 13rd level] hide in plain sight [normally 17th level]) I don't want the class to be overpowered, either, so I'm trying to be very careful with the abilities granted and what level they are available at.

    Making spot the gap a swift action would be too powerful, in my opinion. The standard action also fits the flavor well (the sniper needs a moment to aim for a good headshot).

    What if I make spot the gap the 2nd-level ability, replace clear shot with a -10 penalty on Hide checks made to snipe (rather than the usual -20) and make the 5th level capstone Improved Precise Shot (normally a 11th level ranger feature), and no Hide penalty to snipe?

    I considered a death attack, but the problem is that is that it only works within 30 feet, not what a sniper would want. MulletManAlive, are you suggesting a death attack that have no range limit?
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    If it applies only the ranged attacks, yes. Probably from a minimum range too.

    In practical terms, you don't need hide boosts. Snipers operate at range. Spot checks are batting for zero against them if you're at 200ft [300ft or more, if you use the logical assumption that muzzle flashes make it easier to spot you]. Snipers don't stick in the open and shooting from an uncovered position is basically suicidal when you have a bipod weapon...

    You'll bear in mind that i assumed that this was being used in a combat situation. I understand that the class is basically instantly lethal out of combat, but that's what security details are for.

    In context, it won't unbalance anything because a Psion can get Disintegrate at the same level [assuming this was a level 11 capstone], which is basically SoD anyway.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Good thinking!

    I suggested the Hide benefits because there's been complaint that the class doesn't have enough emphasis on it.

    I figured the master sniper would be most effective out of combat. I doubt setting up for a lethal headshot is the best idea in the middle of a battle. Sniping is best used on someone who doesn't know you're there.

    What do you suggest in terms of specific mechanics?
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Well, in MV, a muzzle flash is a -30 penalty on a Hide check, assuming battlefield conditions. Bear in mind that opponents will probably be suffering the -5 distraction penalty too.

    From there, it's basically like a death attack.

    To make the attack, the sniper must spend 3 rounds observing him. They can do other things in this time but must remain focused on the target and must remain unseen or at least unsuspected by the target. [I'd spend this time adjusting my gun-sights and whatever else you may wish to do]. Then, they must make an attack from Hiding that hits and successfully wounds the target. The target must make a save or die, DC 10 + something [see below]. The Sniper must be at least 30ft from the target to use this attack [including elevation].

    Here it gets more of a "to taste" thing because the save is what defines the class.
    1. 1/2 Character level gives a standard scaling effect that is only just behind the spells of equal level.
    2. Class level is traditional but comes out rather easy to survive
    3. Damage is a classic, but it could probably be gamed somehow. Assuming that your guns do something like 2d8 or so, it works out at about a 19 DC most of the time, probably about equal to the class level one on average.
    4. For the really Outre, how about Spot or possibly Hide ranks? Or half that...Or, the way i've used these abilities repeatedly, use the character's Spot modifier as the DC itself?
    5. A final, possible option is to remove the minumum study time and make the DC something like 10 + Dex + 2 per round spent studying.

    Overall, the choice is yours: Which do you like best?

    My call would be 1, 3, or 4. 5 has its merits too and would make the sniper a powerful mook killer and able to deal death to aberrations everywhere with minimal difficulty. Take that space elves!
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    As a capstone, you could allow them to concentrate on someone for three rounds rounds, unobserved or unsuspected, and treat the target as being within thirty feet . This would allow them to use sneak attack or point-blank shot from much farther away.

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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Hide in plain sight would work even at first level. Shadowdancer gets it then. Just think of it in terms of what level you would want the character to have it. Minimum requirements say level seven, so at eighth, you'll have hide in plain sight if you have it at first level. Not a bad time to get it.

    My bad on ranger hit dice. House rule. Hit dice of d8 fit because of the archer theme. Being ranged, they shouldn't get hit too often, except by other ranged attackers (fairly uncommon) and spellcasters (but everything gets hit by them...).

    The capstone is a lot better now that it's only a free action.

    Another idea is to advance sneak attack, or start a new ability sort of like it.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    How 'bout this? I adjusted the prerequisites (got rid of the non-core feat). The class would first be available at 8th level. It also grants Improved Precise Shot now.

    (I'll fix any wording inconsistencies when I make this final)

    Requirements:
    To qualify to become a master sniper, a character must fulfill all the following criteria.
    Base Attack Bonus: +6
    Skills: Hide 10 Ranks, Spot 10 Ranks
    Feats: Far Shot, Precise Shot

    Master Sniper
    {table=head]Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special

    1st|
    +1
    |
    +2
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    Spot the gap, trained eyes

    2nd|
    +2
    |
    +3
    |
    +0
    |
    +1
    |
    Clear shot

    3rd|
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    Improved Precise Shot

    4th|
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    Distance shot

    5th|
    +5
    |
    +4
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    Lethal shot
    [/table]

    Spot the Gap (Ex): A master sniper learns to take advantage of minor gaps in a target's defenses. At first level, you can attempt to find a weak point in a visible targetís armor as a standard action. This requires a Spot check against a DC equal to your targetís Armor Class. If you succeed, your next attack ranged against that target (which must be made no later than your next turn) is a touch attack.

    Trained Eyes (Ex): Master snipers hone their visual acuity to an uncanny degree of skill. A master sniper suffers only half the normal penalty on his Spot checks because of distance (-1 per 20 feet of distance, rather than -1 per 10 feet). In addition, a master sniper takes only half the normal penalty on ranged attacks per range increment (-1 per range increment, rather than -2).

    Clear Shot (Ex): A master sniper learns how to take advantage of a clear line of sight in order to hit virtually any targets beyond the reach of most snipers. At 2nd level a master sniper can fire a projectile weapon up to fifteen range increments rather than the normal ten range increments, provided he aims at a target to which he has a completely unobstructed view. This means the master sniper must have line of sight to the target, who must not have the benefit of cover or concealment.

    Improved Precise Shot: At 3rd level, you are treated as if you had Improved Precise Shot, even if you do not meet the prerequisites for that feat.

    This benefit only applies while you are wearing light or no armor. You lose the benefit of this ability while wearing medium or heavy armor.

    Distance Shot (Ex): From 4th level on, a master sniper can seemingly hit any target within sight, no matter how far away. As a full-round action, the master sniper can make a single attack with a projectile weapon. This attack is made with no penalty for range, though it still has the same maximum range as a normal attack by the master sniper. This ability can be used in conjunction with any ability that extends the range of a projectile weapon, such as the Far Shot feat or the Clear Shot ability.

    Lethal Shot (Ex): From 5th level, a master sniper learns how to execute a potentially lethal attack from a great distance. If a master sniper studies his target for 3 rounds and then makes a distance shot that successfully deals damage from at least 30 feet away, the attack has the additional effect of possibly either paralyzing or killing the target (master sniper's choice). While studying the target, the master sniper can undertake other actions so long as his attention stays focused on the target and the target does not detect the master sniper or recognize the master sniper as an enemy. If the victim of such an attack fails a Fortitude save (DC 1/2 class level + Dex mod) against the kill effect, she dies. If the saving throw fails against the paralysis effect, the victim is rendered helpless and unable to act for 1d6 rounds plus 1 round per 2 character levels of the master sniper. If the victim's saving throw succeeds, the attack is just a normal distance shot. Once the master sniper has completed the 3 rounds of study, he must make the lethal within the next 3 rounds.

    If a lethal shot is attempted and fails (the victim makes her save) or if the master sniper does not launch the attack within 3 rounds of completing the study, 3 new rounds of study are required before he can attempt another
    lethal shot.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    That's a non-standard and very weak Save DC. Prestige classes, as standard use their full level, though some folks on this board prefer to use 1/2 character level. As it is, you're selling the class short. 1/2 class level is just not potent enough to make the investment worth while.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Quote Originally Posted by TabletopNuke View Post
    I suppose that's where fancy magic weapons and the like come into play. It wouldn't be difficult to come up with magic ammunition that reduces the target to ash if the attack kills the target
    This already exists in Eberron. There is a melee weapon special property called Keeper's Fang (+4 bonus) which sends the soul of anyone slain by it to the Lair of the Keeper (a perilous cave in a distant location), meaning that resurrection has at least some delay associated with it. If you apply the property to arrows, you upgrade death to a delay of at least a few months.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Quote Originally Posted by Mulletmanalive View Post
    That's a non-standard and very weak Save DC. Prestige classes, as standard use their full level, though some folks on this board prefer to use 1/2 character level. As it is, you're selling the class short. 1/2 class level is just not potent enough to make the investment worth while.
    I'm not at all fond of class level for DCs of 5 level classes. It just can't match the 10-level class DC, especially at epic levels.

    My concern about using the length of time spent watching the target as the DC was how much variability there is. What about setting a maximum number of rounds the sniper can spend watching? (1/2 class level?).

    Spot modifier might be too easy to min-max. Just Spot ranks would be too low, wouldn't it.

    Oh! What about 10 + 1/2 character level + Dex mod. That puts it just above spells.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Quote Originally Posted by TabletopNuke View Post
    I'm not at all fond of class level for DCs of 5 level classes. It just can't match the 10-level class DC, especially at epic levels.

    My concern about using the length of time spent watching the target as the DC was how much variability there is. What about setting a maximum number of rounds the sniper can spend watching? (1/2 class level?).

    Spot modifier might be too easy to min-max. Just Spot ranks would be too low, wouldn't it.

    Oh! What about 10 + 1/2 character level + Dex mod. That puts it just above spells.
    Setting limits based on class level when you're using a feature as a capstone is pointless maths. So the limit is meaningless. A simple limitation would be a maximum bonus gainable equal to their Spot ranks or half Spot ranks to taste. It scales and has the advantage of meaning that dedication is rewarded.

    Spot modifier is easily broken if you allow people to buy magic items, always have the spells they want and allow Nth party books but considering what you've told me about the setting [minimal magic items, powers limited to given races etc] i wouldn't assume that it would go much higher than maybe 14 + level at most, and that's with about 4-5 feats used on it. As is, a conservative estimate would be about 9 + level.

    From actual experience with guns, it would be Strength that sets DC on effects based on long-shots, not Dexterity because it's the ability to stop minor changes occurring much more than actually pointing it in the righ direction.

    Your last suggestion is board standard: a resounding [shrug] from me, but it works fine. I've always prefered working for my advantages and the above method actually technically allows it to be used as a snap-shot effect, albeit one with a really low save DC [i'd suggest noting that a '1' is not a failure on the save in that case. Spamming is bad...]

    As an aside, the class could do with a little extra charcoal in conventional ranged combat, just to make it feel worthwhile until you get the capstone. I'd suggest a level one ability that adds +1 or +2 damage per level with ranged attacks. Maybe a swift action to "bring it up to the shoulder" if you'd prefer.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Quote Originally Posted by Mulletmanalive View Post
    Setting limits based on class level when you're using a feature as a capstone is pointless maths. So the limit is meaningless. A simple limitation would be a maximum bonus gainable equal to their Spot ranks or half Spot ranks to taste. It scales and has the advantage of meaning that dedication is rewarded.

    Spot modifier is easily broken if you allow people to buy magic items, always have the spells they want and allow Nth party books but considering what you've told me about the setting [minimal magic items, powers limited to given races etc] i wouldn't assume that it would go much higher than maybe 14 + level at most, and that's with about 4-5 feats used on it. As is, a conservative estimate would be about 9 + level.

    From actual experience with guns, it would be Strength that sets DC on effects based on long-shots, not Dexterity because it's the ability to stop minor changes occurring much more than actually pointing it in the righ direction.

    Your last suggestion is board standard: a resounding [shrug] from me, but it works fine. I've always prefered working for my advantages and the above method actually technically allows it to be used as a snap-shot effect, albeit one with a really low save DC [i'd suggest noting that a '1' is not a failure on the save in that case. Spamming is bad...]

    As an aside, the class could do with a little extra charcoal in conventional ranged combat, just to make it feel worthwhile until you get the capstone. I'd suggest a level one ability that adds +1 or +2 damage per level with ranged attacks. Maybe a swift action to "bring it up to the shoulder" if you'd prefer.
    I just realized that there's a typo in the lethal shot DC. *Shrugs* It's getting changed anyway.

    I have zero gun experience, so I have no idea if there are any inaccuracies.

    Spot modifier is too easy to min-max, but Spot ranks might work. As for Dex vs Str, don't snipers usually have something to steady the gun for long-range shots?

    11th level is the earliest the class can be completed, so let's compare the Lethal Shot DC to an 11th level assassin's Death Attack DC (16+Int Mod). Let's see, using Spot ranks as the DC would result in a DC of Level+3 (assuming Spot is maxed out), 14 at level 11, too low. 10+1/2 Spot ranks is 17, still not quite as good as the assassin. What about 10+1/2 Spot ranks (rounded up)+Dex mod?

    But on the other hand, Death Attack has a 30ft maximum range, but Lethal Shot has no limit on range. Should the DC be slightly lower to compensate for that?

    How's this look for an additional 1st level ability?
    Deadly Accuracy (Ex): You add your class level to damage rolls for ranged attacks.

    If that seems too powerful, I can say that the character must take a standard action to take advantage of that bonus in the following round, or something.

    As far as spamming goes, I don't like the rule that 1 is an automatic fail and 20 is an automatic success. I play with the variant rule that 1 counts as a roll of -10, and 20 counts as a roll of 30.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    I was actually suggesting a DC of 10 + stat +2 per round spent observing.

    Cap that however you want: your choice of Spot ranks or Half Spot ranks, whatever you like.

    I favoured this because it allowed a limited effect "boom headshot" option for snipers caught up close [i.e. no rounds of observation, flat 10 + stat save] for minion takeouts. Balanced some of the long ranged aspects.

    If you want a static DC, either of your previous suggestions work find.

    I'll point out once more that despite Skip Williams saying otherwise, "breaking" anything isn't possible to my mind because it's the GM who makes the rules. Thus, while your point that the save DC would be high with Spot modifier is correct, the idea that you could break it, is essentially false to me.

    If you want to use Dex, use Dex. I'm just saying from experience and no, a Bipod doesn't remove the need for strength. You still have to avoid trembling, hold the thing steady and mitigate the recoil.

    A moderately neutral stat would be Int, Wis or Con. All of which make a certain amount of sense [about as much as Dex if you can't snap-shot with this ability]. Only thing that couldn't be argued is Cha, simply because your force of presonality isn't likely to stop the gun jerking.
    Last edited by Mulletmanalive; 2010-03-01 at 08:33 AM.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    I'm in the process of making modern weapons and armor for Breakdown. I do actually intend to rule that when using large firearms such as rifles, you apply your Strength penalty (if any) to attack rolls due to recoil. Does that sound satisfactory?

    As far as Lethal Shot goes, you'd still have to make the attack roll (which would be affected by Strength). That's why I didn't think it was that important to use Strength for the DC.

    Using 10 + stat +2 per round spent observing for the DC poses a problem at higher (especially epic) levels. What about Spot ranks +1 per round spent observing? The result would by just a bit below Death Attack's DC, but with no range limit. Or is that too low to be practical?
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    A moderately neutral stat would be Int, Wis or Con. All of which make a certain amount of sense [about as much as Dex if you can't snap-shot with this ability]. Only thing that couldn't be argued is Cha, simply because your force of presonality isn't likely to stop the gun jerking.
    If you wanna take the mental direction, I'd say it should be Wis. Wis allows you to screw your mind into a state of really wanting to get the job done. Or imagining the target dead and then making it happen.

    Intelligence would be a case of reciting the process of doing it in your head and then having it play out, hoping it goes right. Which I don't think is as guaranteed as having the uncanny ability to will yourself to aim correctly - steady aim depends more on perception than technique. Hence, Wis.

    Dex of course applies to 'snap shots', like you said - which still involve aiming; I guess maybe holding the gun right and moving correctly.

    Cha is of course a no no.

    I'm in the process of making modern weapons and armor for Breakdown. I do actually intend to rule that when using large firearms such as rifles, you apply your Strength penalty (if any) to attack rolls due to recoil. Does that sound satisfactory?
    Darn, that's an excellent idea! I was confuddled about recoil issues - now I think all I need to do for recoil is give a Strength score to the weapon and then for every modifier below that score, apply a penalty to attack. And then there's the other effects which are a little unorganized right now (gun flies in random direction, overheats, knocks you prone, etc.).

    Granted, recoil applies to all guns but some don't interpose an attack penalty (like shot guns and pistols).
    Last edited by imp_fireball; 2010-03-02 at 02:14 PM.

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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    i have no idea why the rounds thing would be an issue, but go with whatever you think works.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Using 10 + stat +2 per round spent observing for the DC poses a problem at higher (especially epic) levels. What about Spot ranks +1 per round spent observing? The result would by just a bit below Death Attack's DC, but with no range limit. Or is that too low to be practical?
    This should probably max out at some point, otherwise it'd be crazy high.

    Just apply the spot ranks +1 + stat + 10 after 3 rounds spent observing. Seems fine to me, and you'd be a fool not to optimize (so hardly a draw back for requiring a skill).

    Also, add in the 'meditate to avoid the need for sleep' ability. It's a very minor addition and it requires you to stand still. Granted, it makes them the perfect sentry for a sleeping party, but that's the point right?

    Also, if they have some means of peering hundreds up feet into darkness (or certain points of darkness), that would further accent the sentry role.

    Maybe even make them as useful as a wizard that can't scry in that sense.
    Last edited by imp_fireball; 2010-03-02 at 04:19 PM.

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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Quote Originally Posted by imp_fireball View Post
    This should probably max out at some point, otherwise it'd be crazy high.

    Just apply the spot ranks +1 + stat + 10 after 3 rounds spent observing. Seems fine to me, and you'd be a fool not to optimize (so hardly a draw back for requiring a skill).
    Your method results in a DC of 25+ Stat at 11th level (assuming Spot is maxed out). That's hardly fair to CR 11 enemies.


    What about saying the maximum bonus you can get from observing is equal to 1/2 your ranks in Spot (rounded down)? This means the maximum DC at 11th level is 21 (marginally higher than the Death Attack, but only after waiting 4 more rounds)/

    Quote Originally Posted by imp_fireball View Post
    Also, add in the 'meditate to avoid the need for sleep' ability. It's a very minor addition and it requires you to stand still. Granted, it makes them the perfect sentry for a sleeping party, but that's the point right?

    Also, if they have some means of peering hundreds up feet into darkness (or certain points of darkness), that would further accent the sentry role.

    Maybe even make them as useful as a wizard that can't scry in that sense.
    I'm trying to keep Breakdown's non-supernatural classes as realistic as possible. One of the major themes (in the human world anyway) is the spread of supernatural energy and the effects it has on the world. To underline this, I want to keep the "normal human" classes within normal human limit (disregarding epic levels).

    I've heard of people "resetting" their internal clocks to run on about a hour of sleep a night (by making it so you instantly go into REM as soon as you sleep). I've been thinking about making a feat like that, which could be a bonus feat for snipers. Any thoughts?

    On replacing scrying: for the most part, there is no scrying. Most humans don't know about the supernatural, and the government doesn't have a huge number of seers. A keen eye and a good set of nightvision goggles are important for security.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Quote Originally Posted by TabletopNuke View Post
    What about saying the maximum bonus you can get from observing is equal to 1/2 your ranks in Spot (rounded down)? This means the maximum DC at 11th level is 21 (marginally higher than the Death Attack, but only after waiting 4 more rounds)/
    I did say this. About 4 posts ago...

    It makes it highly dangerous if you have time on your hands but just dangerous and a nifty benefit when you're actually fighting in combat.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Quote Originally Posted by Mulletmanalive View Post
    I did say this. About 4 posts ago...
    Sorry! I misread posts sometimes (computer screen hurts my eyes, we have a love/hate relationship.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mulletmanalive View Post
    It makes it highly dangerous if you have time on your hands but just dangerous and a nifty benefit when you're actually fighting in combat.
    So that DC sound good?

    How does this look for a Master Sniper bonus feat?

    Intermittent Sleep
    You have trained yourself to slip immediately into REM sleep, enabling you to function optimally on only two hours of sleep a day.
    Prerequisites: Concentration: 6 ranks
    You only require 2 hours of sleep a day, broken up into 30 minute segments. However, you also require 1 1/2 times as much food as normal. You must still wait 8 hours to recover spells.
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    Default Re: Master Sniper (3.5 PrC)

    Quote Originally Posted by TabletopNuke View Post
    Sorry! I misread posts sometimes (computer screen hurts my eyes, we have a love/hate relationship.

    So that DC sound good?

    How does this look for a Master Sniper bonus feat?

    Intermittent Sleep
    You have trained yourself to slip immediately into REM sleep, enabling you to function optimally on only two hours of sleep a day.
    Prerequisites: Concentration: 6 ranks
    You only require 2 hours of sleep a day, broken up into 30 minute segments. However, you also require 1 1/2 times as much food as normal. You must still wait 8 hours to recover spells.
    I would never spend a feat slot on this. I'd say get rid of the penalty, get rid of the "broken up into 30-minute segments" part (corrected with a hyphen ), drop the Concentration requirement to 5 ranks, and then give some other benefit. A ring of sustenance overshadows the feat easily.

    Perhaps giving it as a class feature wouldn't be a bad idea, but the whole extra food thing is unnecessary.
    Last edited by Temotei; 2010-03-04 at 10:56 PM.
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