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    Default A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    The Assassin



    Shadows in the night and bringers of death, Assassins have quite a bit in common with each other. Whatever their cause may be, if they even possess a cause, they possess no greater talent than cutting short the lives of others. Though they are fairly skilled, they possess nowhere near the breadth of talent that most rogues possess.
    Adventures: Assassins adventure for the same reason that they’d do anything else; to claim what they desire. Even if an assassin has no particular interest in an adventure, a paying patron very well might. Less skilled Assassins, the ones who are discovered or shame a guild or employer, may well be forced to flee just to stay alive. That said, very few assassins dislike the act of killing and quite a few enjoy the rush of adrenaline.
    Characteristics: Though not quite as skilled rogues, Assassins typically possess enough skills to help them get by and are a bit more suited for combat. They are also adept at using several less savory tricks, ranging from ambushes to quick coup de graces to the use of poison in combat.
    Some assassins study the basic talents of rogues, learning how to find and disarm traps or dodge special attacks. Others, meanwhile, focus on more martial pursuits, making their sneak attacks from further away or learning the weaknesses of creatures normally immune to such assaults.
    Alignment: Most Assassins tend towards lawful and evil tendencies, due to the organization of guilds, frequent reliance of contracts, and the nature of their dark deeds. Though there are not good assassins, there are those who seek repentance for their crimes or who act on behalf of good agencies or patrons, secretly performing the actions that they could not. Other neutral assassins, meanwhile, act as they do in order to somehow undo some terrible wrong (either in society or one that was visited upon them personally) Chaotic Assassins, when they appear, are often merciless and aimless killers who simply act as they decide.
    Religion: Though not well-known for their piety, many assassins invoke the names of Nerull or Erythnul before starting a job. The more repentant among assassins, however, may end up worshiping just about anybody.
    Background: Some assassins are officially inducted into a formalized “assassin’s guild” or a “thieves’ guild” if none is available. As assassins rarely need the assistance that rogues may, mentors are extremely rare, forcing most assassins outside of these guilds to teach themselves the tricks of the trade.
    Typically, even assassins of the same guild could hardly be called “allies” or “friends”. When given the choice, most assassins prefer to avoid contact with others of their “trade”. Even so, most assassins possess a certain degree of professional respect for each other’s handiwork and would reluctantly work with others if their guild or employer deemed it necessary.
    Races: As versatile as they are, humans are among one of the more common races to turn to killing as a profession. Elves (especially the Drow) also turn out more assassins than they’d likely want to admit. Rather few dwarves or gnomes take up the mantle (though the same cannot be said for whisper gnomes or sverfneblin) though those that exist are watched by their peers with some degree of amusement. Perhaps surprisingly, there are very few halfling assassins. Despite the influence of Dallah Thaun, most halflings who would’ve been tempted to try assassination became the Jarran generations ago.
    Savage species such as goblins and kobolds, due to the often-rigid tribal structure of their societies, can rarely make livings as assassins (or learn the more sophisticated tricks of the trade) except when living among other humanoids.
    Other Classes: Assassins typically enjoy the presence of rogues and similar characters who can compliment their skill set and save them the trouble of trying to learn their tricks as well. They are generally wary of other martial classes unless they prove themselves capable of some degree of subtlety. Assassins appreciate the manifold boons of possessing spellcasters on their side but may or may not feel the need to protect them in battle. Assassins and paladins, even under the best of conditions, often have something of a strained relationship, preferring to avoid each other when possible.
    Role: Depending on their selection of skills, an assassin’s precise role may differ from individual to individual. Compared with a rogue, assassins are better capable of withstanding prolonged melee combat and are masters of ending ambushes as soon as they begin. Their stealth, however, often remains unchanged. Quite a few assassins even choose to learn much of the same skill with traps that rogues possess.

    Alignment: Any nongood.
    Hit Die: d8
    Starting Age: As rogue
    Starting Gold: As rogue

    The Assassin
    {table=head]Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special

    1st|
    +1
    |
    +0
    |
    +2
    |
    +0
    |Felling Blow (1d6), Sneak Attack +1d6, Poison Use

    2nd|
    +2
    |
    +0
    |
    +3
    |
    +0
    |Death Blow, Special Ability

    3rd|
    +3
    |
    +1
    |
    +3
    |
    +1
    |Felling Blow (2d6), Poison Mastery +1

    4th|
    +4
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    |
    +1
    |Master of Ambush, Bonus Ambush Feat

    5th|
    +5
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    |
    +1
    |Felling Blow (3d6), Sneak Attack +2d6

    6th|
    +6/+1
    |
    +2
    |
    +5
    |
    +2
    |Special Ability

    7th|
    +7/+2
    |
    +2
    |
    +5
    |
    +2
    |Felling Blow (4d6), Poison Mastery +2

    8th|
    +8/+3
    |
    +2
    |
    +6
    |
    +2
    |Bonus Ambush Feat

    9th|
    +9/+4
    |
    +3
    |
    +6
    |
    +3
    |Felling Blow (5d6), Sneak Attack +3d6

    10th|
    +10/+5
    |
    +3
    |
    +7
    |
    +3
    |Special Ability

    11th|
    +11/+6/+1
    |
    +3
    |
    +7
    |
    +3
    |Felling Blow (6d6), Poison Mastery +3

    12th|
    +12/+7/+2
    |
    +4
    |
    +8
    |
    +4
    |Bonus Ambush Feat

    13th|
    +13/+8/+3
    |
    +4
    |
    +8
    |
    +4
    |Felling Blow (7d6), Sneak Attack +4d6

    14th|
    +14/+9/+4
    |
    +4
    |
    +9
    |
    +4
    |Special Ability

    15th|
    +15/+10/+5
    |
    +5
    |
    +9
    |
    +5
    |Felling Blow (8d6), Poison Mastery +4

    16th|
    +16/+11/+6/+1
    |
    +5
    |
    +10
    |
    +5
    |Bonus Ambush Feat

    17th|
    +17/+12/+7/+2
    |
    +5
    |
    +10
    |
    +5
    |Felling Blow (9d6), Sneak Attack +5d6

    18th|
    +18/+13/+8/+3
    |
    +6
    |
    +11
    |
    +6
    |Special Ability

    19th|
    +19/+14/+9/+4
    |
    +6
    |
    +11
    |
    +6
    |Felling Blow (10d6), Poison Mastery +5

    20th|
    +20/+15/+10/+5
    |
    +6
    |
    +12
    |
    +6
    |Bonus Ambush Feat, Slaying Strike[/table]
    Class Skills (4 + Int modifier per level, x4 at 1st level): Balance, Bluff, Climb, Disable Device, Disguise, Escape Artist, Hide, Intimidate, Jump, Listen, Move Silently, Open Lock, Search, Sleight of Hand, Spot, Swim, Tumble

    Weapon and Armor Proficiencies: You are proficient with all simple weapons and five martial and/or exotic weapons of your choice, as well as with light armor but no shields.

    Poison Use: You are trained in the use of poison and never risk accidentally poisoning yourself when applying poison to a blade.

    Sneak Attack: If you can catch an opponent when he is unable to defend himself effectively from your attack, you can strike a vital spot for extra damage. Basically, your attack deals extra damage any time your target would be denied a Dexterity bonus to AC (whether the target actually has a Dexterity bonus or not) or when you flank your foe. This extra damage is 1d6 at 1st level and it increases by 1d6 every four assassin levels thereafter. Should you score a critical hit with a sneak attack, this extra damage is not multiplied.
    Ranged attacks can count as sneak attacks only if the target is within 30 feet. You can’t strike with deadly accuracy from beyond that range.
    With a sap (blackjack) or an unarmed strike, you can make a sneak attack that deals nonlethal damage instead of lethal damage. You cannot use a weapon that deals lethal damage to deal nonlethal damage in a sneak attack, not even with the usual –4 penalty because you must make optimal use of your weapon in order to execute a sneak attack.
    You can sneak attack only living creatures with discernible anatomies – undead, constructs, oozes, plants, and incorporeal creatures lack vital areas to attack. Any creature that is immune to critical hits is not vulnerable to sneak attacks. You must be able to see the target well enough to pick out a vital spot and be able to reach such a spot. You cannot sneak attack while striking a creature with concealment or striking the limbs of a creature whose vitals are beyond reach.

    Felling Blow: As an assassin, you are an expert at ending battles before they can even start. By catching opponents off guard, you can strike them in just the right way to end the confrontation one way or another.
    Whenever you make a successful attack against a target who would be denied a Dexterity bonus to AC (whether the target actually has a Dexterity bonus or not), roll the indicated number of die. After calculating damage, if the target’s remaining hp is equal to or less than the result, the target is instantly slain or falls unconscious for the next 1d6+1 minutes (your choice).
    As with sneak attacks, ranged attacks can count as felling blows only if the target is within 30 feet. When using weaponry that deals nonlethal damage (such as a sap or whip), you may not slay an opponent using a felling blow.
    You can only score felling blows on living creatures with discernable anatomies – undead, constructs, oozes, plants, and incorporeal creatures lack vital areas to attack. Any creature that is immune to critical hits is not vulnerable to felling blows. You must be able to see the target well enough to pick out a vital spot and be able to reach such a spot. You cannot score felling blows on creatures with concealment or when striking the limbs of a creature whose vitals are beyond reach.

    Special Abilities: On attaining 2nd level, and at every four levels afterwards (6th, 10th, 14th, and 18th), you gain a special ability of your choice from among the following options.
    Bonus Feat: You may select a bonus feat in place of a special ability.
    Evasion (Ex): You can avoid even magical an unusual attacks with great agility. If you make a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save, you instead take no damage. Evasion can only be used if you are wearing light armor or no armor. You do not gain the benefit of evasion while helpless.
    Find Traps (Ex): You can use the search skill to find traps with a search DC of over 20.
    Hide In Plain Sight (Ex): Requires Stealth Mastery, Hide 12 ranks. While in any degree of shadowy illumination or darkness, you can use the hide skill even while being observed.
    Improved Uncanny Dodge (Ex): Requires Uncanny Dodge. You can no longer be flanked; you can react to opponents on opposite sides of you as easily as you can react to a single attacker. This defense denies a rogue the ability to sneak attack you by flanking you, unless the attacker has at least four more rogue levels than you possess class levels.
    Piercing Blows (Ex): Choose construct, ooze, plant, or undead. You may now make sneak attacks and score felling blows on creatures of that type. You may select this ability multiple times, choosing a new creature type each time.
    Ranged Assailant (Ex): You may make sneak attacks and score felling blows from as far as 100 feet away using ranged attacks. Add your class level to all Hide checks made to remain hidden after making a ranged attack.
    Stealth Mastery (Ex): You take no penalty to hide or move silently checks for moving at your full land speed and halve the penalties to such checks when running or charging.
    Trapmaster (Ex): Requires Find Traps, Search 8 ranks. You can use the Disable Device skill to disarm magical traps. Furthermore, if you succeed on a disable device check on a trap by 10 or more, you can bypass the trap (with your party) without disarming it.
    Uncanny Dodge (Ex): You can react to danger before your senses would normally allow you to do so. You retain your Dexterity bonus to AC (if any) even if you are caught flat-footed or struck by an invisible attacker. However, you still lose your Dexterity bonus to AC if immobilized.

    Death Blow: At 2nd level, you gain Death Blow (Complete Adventurer, page 106) as a bonus feat, even if you do not meet the prerequisites).

    Poison Mastery (Ex): Starting at 3rd level, you learn how to use poison to its fullest effects and how to avoid its effects. You add the indicated bonus to the save DCs of all poison you utilize and to all Fortitude saves made to resist poison.

    Master of Ambush (Ex): Starting at 4th level, you become adept at catching foes by surprise. Whenever you act during a surprise round, you may take a full round of actions. Furthermore, you are treated as dealing an extra dice of damage with your sneak attack for the purpose of meeting the prerequisites of Ambush feats. Lastly, once per round, you may apply the benefits of an ambush feat to a successful sneak attack without reducing the damage dealt.

    Bonus Ambush Feat: You gain a bonus feat at 4th level and every 4 levels afterwards (8th, 12th, 16th, and 20th).

    Slaying Strike (Ex): Starting at 20th level, once per encounter, you may declare your next attack to be a slaying strike as a free action. When making a slaying strike, the target is denied their Dexterity bonus to their AC (if any).

    Personal Notes:
    Spoiler
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    Okay, this is probably the most "boring" thing that I've ever made so some of you may be wondering what on earth I think I'm doing. Well, I've seen several people try to turn the assassin into a base class so I thought that I'd take a shot at it.
    Before anyone out there brings this up, I know that this thing is "weak". I made it "weak" on purpose. The entire time that I was making this class, I had a single, burning goal in mind. I was trying to make a class that was as balanced as possible in relation to an average rogue.
    • Not a swordsage.
    • Not what you think a rogue should do.
    • Not an optimized two-weapon rogue with the craven feat.

    Just an average rogue, the type that would be used in a casual campaign. I knew that balancing it perfectly would be impossible but I did my best.

    Some of you may be wondering where the spellcasting, typical not only of the assassin PrC but of so many base class remakes, has gone. I have removed it for 2 reasons:
    1. Being an assassin has no logical connection with somehow having magic. Seriously, no connection.
    2. One of the basic ideas of the Assassin PrC is that the spell-less rogue gets an upgrade by becoming the spellcasting Assassin. As such, giving this class spellcasting from the get-go would undermine my primary goal of making this class balanced. This guy can take levels in the assassin PrC if he wants to gain the same benefits at the same levels.

    Yeah, I'm not one of those people who creates a class with the goal that it be so super-special-awesome that everyone play through it straight for 20 levels. Though it may sound hypocritical after my gambit fighter, I think those types of classes lead to power creep and I dislike myself whenever I make such a class myself.
    Last edited by Realms of Chaos; 2010-09-12 at 12:05 PM.
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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    So...Why would I take a level of rogue instead of this? Why does it completely eliminate the need for almost every rogue-aimed PrC? I love the idea of an assassin without spellcasting, but this seems to take a lot from everywhere and give little back. I can't see this being viable unless put against an expanded rogue to show the differences between masters of stealth-and-stealing and stealth-and-sword.

    Also, full BAB? No.

    After looking at the notes, I can appreciate where this is coming from, but the abilities either need to be more focused or the class needs to be toned down so as to not outshine every single other 'sneaker'-type.
    Last edited by DrWeird; 2010-09-12 at 12:11 PM.
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    AssassinGuy

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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    Wait. I'm not sure that I understood the critique. Your first paragraph makes it sound too weak while your second paragraph makes it sound too strong.

    Could you please elaborate (both the point above and why it is so)?

    I, for one, can't see how this is so much stronger or weaker than a rogue, a scout, or even a ninja for that matter.
    Last edited by Realms of Chaos; 2010-09-12 at 12:39 PM.
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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    Realms, he's saying that it just flat out trumps Rogue, which I don't entirely agree with. Felling Blow is pretty damn good to be honest, but he really counts on that, and if he doesn't get it all the time, badness ensues.

    I like it though. It's "boring", but that's fine. Sometimes, not pushing the limits is preferable to pushing too hard.

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    AssassinGuy

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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    Let me show you guys the math I did.

    A normal rogue 20 makes 3 attacks with a full attack, each of which deal +10d6 damage. That means 30d6 damage.

    An assassin 20 makes 4 attacks with a full attack, each of which deals +5d6 damage (20d6 damage). While Felling blow does kind of give an extra +10d6 damage, that damage is an all-or-nothing deal, meaning that you could at most hope to add it once when full attacking a single foe. That means 30d6 damage. While the assassin gains normal extra damage from that fourth attack and higher attack bonuses than the rogue, it's entirely possible that the final 10d6 damage won't come up as it's hard to utilize, evening things out quite a bit.

    If we get into two-weapon fighting (which, as stated, I didn't account for), the Rogue pulls into the lead by a very large margin of extra die.


    The only distinct advantage that this guy has over the rogue, it would seem, is his ability to take out mooks. If this guy catches four guards unaware and makes a full attack against each of them, it's possible that each of his attacks will deal +15d6 damage for a total of 60d6 extra damage. This was completely intended as the ability to take out weak mooks in a hurry, though useful, is hardly gamebreaking.

    If you go out and crunch all of the math, it might end up that this guy has a somewhat bigger damage output than the rogue. The thing is, this guy is supposed to be less skill-monkeyish and more martial than the rogue, meaning I've succeeded in that regard.
    Last edited by Realms of Chaos; 2010-09-12 at 01:10 PM.
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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    Sounds good. I'll try this eventually and let you know how it goes.

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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    I like it. Comparable with Iron Kingdoms full BAB Rogue the Excecutioner.

    I like felling blow really helps capture Assassin feel. It kinda sucks at traps till 2nd level minimum though (finding at least).

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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    I like it - its like a rogue/fighter hybrid, and really themes with the assassin is about. The rogue is nothing bit a swindler, bat-alley bully, thief, burglar, acrobat, swindler, etc - and was never intended to actually be a 'fighter' or 'slayer' or 'killer' theme except for the occassional mugging gone wrong or bandit-theme. This has that 'im trained to kill just like a professional soldier" feel with the full bab, and the dirty death-strike like theme of the traditional 'ambush' style assassin all in one.

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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    I like this. This is a class I'd use in one of my campaigns... fills an interesting, if not-totally-vacant niche. Felling blow is a fantastic idea.
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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    I'd say it's probably better in combat than a rogue; Master of Ambush and bonus Ambush feats help. It's also almost definitely better than a Sneak Attack fighter. The first is questionably good, the second is something that it had better be.

    Skill-wise you lose out on 4 skills per level, and most of rogue's social skills which is a fairly hefty cost.

    You get 5 bonus (ambush) feats, another preselected feat, poison use (which is roughly worth a feat), and 5 special abilities that can be traded for feats. You also get 5d6 sneak attack damage. This combined with Master of Ambush should make a pretty powerful combatant but not completely obsolete Rogue or Fighter (fighter still gets more options in his feats and can build up powerful chains quickly; rogue still gets better sneak attack and more skills).

    I'd say it is probably a high tier 4, well-made and strong. The one thing that actually upsets me is that it doesn't get the option of taking Improved Evasion as a special ability (even though the usefulness of improved evasion in this case is questionable).
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    AssassinGuy

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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    Sorry about the lack of improved evasion but if you'd look carefully, you'd see that I avoided every single rogue special ability (except for the bonus feat). This guy can't get crippling strike, defensive roll, opportunist, skill mastery, slippery mind, or improved evasion.
    Instead, he uses special abilities to catch up on his basic roguish skills or to increase stealth/empower his own sneak attacks/felling blows. It was a design move that made sense at the time.
    Last edited by Realms of Chaos; 2010-09-12 at 04:55 PM.
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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    Well, id suggest giving some combat-related special abilities/keeping crippling strike for special abilities. Fits the theme.

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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    A note on improved evasion: If you really want it, you just add a two level rogue dip to this. As long as you /your dm goes with the "automatically get improved evasion if you already have evasion" thing. Which is pretty standard.

    I'd almost think starting out rogue then picking this up after a few levels would be a fantastic build. So yes, I'm archiving this because I want it. Might rebuild my knife fighter build with this instead of the swashbuckler/fighter levels it originally had.

    tl;dr

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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    I really like this class, I think Felling Blow is a pretty good alternative to Death Attack, makes it a bit more useful in combat but still keeps the "I took you by surprise so I get to kill you more easily" approach. Pretty cool overall, but I think perhaps adding some more special abilities to choose from might make it a bit more interesting.
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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    Thoughts, thoughts, thoughts...

    Felling blow, for reasons I can't truly account for, seems like a Standard action to me. Probably from far too much Assassin's Creed, where it's not just a propensity to get lucky occasionally, but a lot of very deliberate killing actions...

    Have you considered, as a possibility, having the thing able to deliver nasty ass Felling Blow style bonus damage as a Standard action [maybe losing their stat bonus to attack or something] but maybe Flatfooting themselves in exchange?

    Just a thought.

    It feels like it could do with some escape and evasion type abilities:

    • Moving through crowds easily
    • Hiding in crowds
    • causing panic and confusion in crowds [confusion seems to be a common feature in successful assassinations in fiction]
    • Leaving no evidence via preparation
    • Scaring the crap out of witnesses so they don't blab
    • The ability to find blabbing witnesses
    • A selection of useful ways of getting rid of the body [a particularly nasty one is to stab the guy in the fatty parts, stuff a piece of rope into it and set fire to him; human candle, virtually no evidence]


    As you say, it's not hugely interesting as a design and i'm not a fan of the randomness of the special power's activation. It seems like it's only ever going to work at anticlimactic moments, but then, that's my rolling for you.
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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    Hmmm... I can't say for sure but I'm noticing two things about that list of special abilities, mulletman.
    1. I don't think any of them are quite as useful as the ones already listed.
    2. They don't seem to be specifically assassin-oriented (except for the last one).
    What I might do with them, though, is make them into feats that require sneak attack, thus making them accessible to both rogues and assassins.

    Also, as for your complaint about felling blow, I was going to implement something like this guy's silent killer class feature but I figured that it would be too powerful, even if I halved the limit to 5 hp/2 levels.
    Letting you use your felling blow as damage really wasn't the intention here and it would feel wierd giving this guy (or any sneaky class) a move that deliberately left them wide open.
    This move was primarily meant to ambush and kill mooks/guards, not to take down the final boss. Sorry if there's some disconnect there.
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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    The picture made me chuckle. "An assassin? Who? ME? No way, I'm not hiding anything under my inconspicuous Assassin's Cloak!"

    Seriously though, I like the class. The DMG assassin is quite silly with its spellcasting and weak & annoying Death Attack ability. I'm glad you've taken a different approach.

    Without analyzing the mechanical side of things too much, my only complaint is actually the name of the signature ability, Felling Blow. It sounds like a pun on Telling Blow and doesn't sound cool and sinister enough, but maybe that's just me.

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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    I can't really say anything that hasn't been said before, but here goes:

    1. This class is not boring, it looks like an extremely exciting thing to play. For me at least, and I'm sure many others, part of the excitement of a class is the ability to do something well. This class does what it says on the tin very well.

    2. I always liked the Executioner from Iron Heroes, and this makes that type of class availabe in 3.5 DnD, which I love!

    Bravo, bravo

    P.S. Don't listen to mulletman, he's just a cranky old fuddy-duddy, though he has helped me in almost everything I've done!
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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    Quote Originally Posted by Sir_Chivalry View Post
    P.S. Don't listen to mulletman, he's just a cranky old fuddy-duddy, though he has helped me in almost everything I've done!
    I agree with everything but the "old" part!

    It's really only the randomness that bothers me about it, if i'm honest. No More Heroes is fantastic but the pudding powerups [sometime, you kill an enemy and Travis the PC yell "strawberry blamonge!" or something and you get a powerup] are so random that they're actually annoying when they happen outside boss battles.

    That said, your current solution seems pretty reasonable as far as it goes. Yes, my suggestions were pretty limited but it was basically what i could come up with in 5 minutes thinking about Assassin's Creed 2...
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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    I'm looking for ambush feats...I see 10 in Complete Scoundrel, and I am...underwhelmed.

    At level 4, with your 1d6 sneak attack and the extra prerequisite die you get from Master of Ambush, you qualify for...one of them, which lets you deal nonlethal damage. If you have power points, you can get a PP-draining attack instead, which seems ok.

    At level 8, you qualify for 3d6 ambush feats, which is another 2: you can give a -2 Int and Wis penalty, or give a caster a 50% spell failure chance. Okay, now you can hose casters.

    And so on. The 5d6 and 6d6 ambush feats are good, but I would really hate to take any of the others on any character. It feels like what's missing is not something in the class, but more Ambush feats. I hope I just don't know about them, since the only place I've seen them is Complete Scoundrel. There another source for them out there?

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    AssassinGuy

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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    Hmmm... an interesting point about those ambush feats.

    I found out, however, that drow of the underdark has three usable ambush feats as well (one of which boosts poison DCs, a second of which shakens a foe for a round, and a third of which sickens a foe for a round), all of which the assassin could choose as their fourth level feats.
    In addition, Dragon #344 has six more ambush feats that an assassin could potentially utilize (you could verify this via crystalkeep, realmshelp, or whathaveyou) and don't forget that complete scoundrel retroactively marks arterial strike and hamstring from Complete Warrior as Ambush feats.

    That raises the official number of ambush feats up there to 21.

    If that's not enough, I typically use feats from This thread as Kellus is (or was) a master of homebrewing. In that thread are 13 more feats that the assassin could potentially use.
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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    And that is just what I was looking for. Between the errata'd CW feats and that homebrew post, I am liking it.

    A while back I looked at the ambush feats and thought they wouldn't be worth it. Sacrificing a lot of damage--damage I had worked to get into position to deal--for effects that seemed underwhelming much of the time. But you've solved this: The assassin gets one each turn, without sacrificing his (fewer) sneak attack dice. Ambush every turn! Really, really like it. Would play it in a stealth-heavy campaign and enjoy it.

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    HalflingPirate

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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    hi all,
    hey realms great go at making a "combat stealth" type of class, since you seem to be reasonable in dealing with criticism i shall fire away and hope not to get flamed.

    1. The Mechanic for "felling blow" special ability is a awesome idea in my opinion, however i believe with the addition of the normal sneak attack that the class receives it makes the class overpowered, for example a lvl 1 rogue who catches someone offguard and hits him with a sneak attack would deal an additional 1d6 damage to said creature (conditions allowing) whereas your class would deal the same 1d6 damage but the creature would effectively have 1d6 fewer hp also. i realise that your class recieves the sneak attack damage much much more slowly than a rogue it does however still recieve the "felling blow" damage at the same rate that a rogue does, so effectively it will always have more "effective damage" than a rogue of the same lvl. recieveing full BAB means that your class gets attacks much much faster than a rogue of the same lvl.

    also perhaps the ability should allow a saving throw to resist or your class should maybe not recieve sneak attack in addition to the felling blow ability, as even without the sneak attack damage it recieves attacks faster than a rogue has a better base attack bonus and more hp.

    once again please dont see this as a gripe, just expressing my views in hopes of a more balanced (but still deadly) assasin.

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    AssassinGuy

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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    No flaming here, my friend.

    I respect your approach to the situation but as my retort, I would dare say that though the assassin is superior in regards to mooks at all levels, the rogue becomes just as talented (it not more talented due to the increased reliability of its damage) at damaging singular foes as early as 8th level.

    At 8th level, both the assassin and rogue make two attacks. The Assassin adds its sneak attack twice (+4d6) but due to the all-or-nothing nature of felling blow, it only adds that bonus once at most (maximum 8d6 damage).

    The rogue, meanwhile adds its full sneak attack bonus to both attacks (also 8d6 damage). While the assassin hits more reliably due to higher BAB, the Rogue deals its extra damage more reliably.

    As I've mentioned before, the math also evens out this way by 20th level, though I'm sure that the relative power levels fluctuate between these two points. That said, if this guy is a little better at combat than the rogue (and even then it won't be by a large degree or that reliable), it doesn't seem that overpowering as you're paying for it at least in part with a large part of your role outside of combat (especially the loss of UMD).
    Last edited by Realms of Chaos; 2010-09-13 at 07:01 PM.
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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    Quote Originally Posted by sariss_eldariss View Post
    hi all,
    hey realms great go at making a "combat stealth" type of class, since you seem to be reasonable in dealing with criticism i shall fire away and hope not to get flamed.

    1. The Mechanic for "felling blow" special ability is a awesome idea in my opinion, however i believe with the addition of the normal sneak attack that the class receives it makes the class overpowered, for example a lvl 1 rogue who catches someone offguard and hits him with a sneak attack would deal an additional 1d6 damage to said creature (conditions allowing) whereas your class would deal the same 1d6 damage but the creature would effectively have 1d6 fewer hp also. i realise that your class recieves the sneak attack damage much much more slowly than a rogue it does however still recieve the "felling blow" damage at the same rate that a rogue does, so effectively it will always have more "effective damage" than a rogue of the same lvl. recieveing full BAB means that your class gets attacks much much faster than a rogue of the same lvl.
    Felling blow only deals damage when it would kill them so it is only psuedo damage. Sometimes it is damage and sometimes it does nothing.

    I think the OP should list the ambush feats at bottom and sources. At least give as many non-homebrew ones.

  26. - Top - End - #26
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    HalflingPirate

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    Default Re: A Mundane Assassin (Base Class)

    thanks for the clear up starbucks (the coffee crusader)
    so its more like a "lessening" of the hit point total of said bad guy (or gurl) instead of a reliable hit point damage ability (as it may or may not "go off")

    i do have a question how does this effect folks with diehard or similar feats?

    thanks a bunch in advance for any answers

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