A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
You can get A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2 now at Gumroad
Page 5 of 10 FirstFirst 12345678910 LastLast
Results 121 to 150 of 284
  1. - Top - End - #121
    Halfling in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Republic of Texas
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    For me, this build was just a Triple Threat of Worthlessness. One, I couldn't justify taking two casting classes, just so I could ignore one of them. Two, I couldn't justify taking two caster classes, and have them both be worthless at level 20. I have to admit though, Vancian casting is not my favorite, nor is it my strongsuit. And three, if the point of the contest is to use a given Secret Ingredient, I want to use the whole thing, not part, so I couldn't bring myself to skip the second caster and only go half way.

    Credit goes to whoever picked that class for the contest though. It's rough. Really stressed out my (admittedly sub-par) optimization-fu. I did have a lot of fun trying to find builds that worked, which is mostly the point.

    As I said in a post above, good luck to the contestants who, unlike me, don't give up. I'm really looking forward to seeing all of the builds.

  2. - Top - End - #122
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Amechra's Avatar

    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Where I live.

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Mine is, I think, decently strong, even with the horrid casting.

    Remind me, web stuff is OK, right?

  3. - Top - End - #123
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Cieyrin's Avatar

    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Wisconsin
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Quote Originally Posted by Amechra View Post
    Mine is, I think, decently strong, even with the horrid casting.

    Remind me, web stuff is OK, right?
    Yes, just link back to it.
    Goblin Cannon Crew avatar by Vrythas.
    Spoiler
    Show

    Gnome Gun Mage avatar by NEO|Phyte
    Quote Originally Posted by Mulletmanalive View Post
    Damn you Cieyrin! Cieyrin!!!!!read as Khaaaaan!

    My badges! :D
    My Homebrew
    The Gunslinger's Handbook
    Archetype Combo List!

  4. - Top - End - #124
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Thurbane's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Terra Australis
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Quote Originally Posted by Amechra View Post
    Mine is, I think, decently strong, even with the horrid casting.

    Remind me, web stuff is OK, right?
    Yep, WotC web-only content (articles, enhancements etc.) is OK...if it was posted as an April Fools joke, you might take an elegance hit.

  5. - Top - End - #125
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Xodion's Avatar

    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    UK

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Submitted, with only -48 minutes to go... He hasn't posted them yet, so it's fine

    I seriously underestimated how much effort that would take, I've made so many characters that I thought it would be easier than that. Cookies for everyone mad enough to want to do this on a regular basis, I think I'll sit out of the next one!
    DM: You exit the temple. Cleric, roll a knowledge(religion) check...
    Cleric: *passes* "Ah yes, now I recognise it, it was a temple to the god of traps!"
    Thief: *punches Cleric*

    Iron Chef Contest Gallery:
    Spoiler
    Show
    IC XVII: Snow (Silver)
    IC XX: Sir Karel (Bronze)
    IC XXXII: 'Aundair' Yannedge-Owens (Gold)
    IC XXXII: Sir Arminel Rayne (Bronze)
    IC XXXIX: Hardy (Bronze)


  6. - Top - End - #126
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Thurbane's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Terra Australis
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    There's a certain base class that makes entry (and continued reqs) quite easy - be interesting to see how many builds used it...

  7. - Top - End - #127
    Firbolg in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Quote Originally Posted by Clepto View Post
    For me, this build was just a Triple Threat of Worthlessness. One, I couldn't justify taking two casting classes, just so I could ignore one of them. Two, I couldn't justify taking two caster classes, and have them both be worthless at level 20. I have to admit though, Vancian casting is not my favorite, nor is it my strongsuit. And three, if the point of the contest is to use a given Secret Ingredient, I want to use the whole thing, not part, so I couldn't bring myself to skip the second caster and only go half way.

    Credit goes to whoever picked that class for the contest though. It's rough. Really stressed out my (admittedly sub-par) optimization-fu. I did have a lot of fun trying to find builds that worked, which is mostly the point.

    As I said in a post above, good luck to the contestants who, unlike me, don't give up. I'm really looking forward to seeing all of the builds.
    I had the same problem.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thurbane View Post
    Yep, WotC web-only content (articles, enhancements etc.) is OK...if it was posted as an April Fools joke, you might take an elegance hit.
    FWIW, you will get an elegance hit from me for using April Fools' articles.
    Quote Originally Posted by Vaz View Post
    Ponies, the Kim Karsdashian of GITP.
    This is what happens when they let me DM:
    Beyond the Horizon IC / OOC
    A Time to Die: Alpha IC / Bravo IC / OOC

  8. - Top - End - #128
    Titan in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Kitchener/Waterloo
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Quote Originally Posted by Thurbane View Post
    There's a certain base class that makes entry (and continued reqs) quite easy - be interesting to see how many builds used it...
    Yeah, half the reason I didn't end up entering was because my build used that, and I couldn't think of a good reason to build it any other way.
    Lord Raziere herd I like Blasphemy, so Urpriest Exalted as a Malefactor

    Meet My Monstrous Guide to Monsters. Everything you absolutely need to know about Monsters and never thought you needed to ask.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mithril Leaf View Post
    One of the unwritten rules of Giantitp is that Urpriest is always right.
    Trophy!
    Spoiler
    Show


    original Urpriest (by Andraste)

  9. - Top - End - #129
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Amechra's Avatar

    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Where I live.

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    I most probably did to, though to be fair it offers more of a nice bonus than anything.

    And I don't think I'm going to get my second one in.

    Since I doubt anyone will crib off potential builds, may I suggest we post our potentials?

    Spoiler
    Show
    Divine Bard 3/Warlock 4/Ardent Dilettante 9/Ghost Savage Progression 2/Ardent Dilettante +1. It would have worked because a least invocation counts as a 1st level Arcane spell for prerequisites; this is how Warlock can get in to Arcane Trickster. Discarded because it was weak as hell, and MAD.

    Ranger 5/Unseelie Dark Hunter 5/Ardent Dilettante 10, using story to justify resurrection. Wisdom SAD, and a lot of speed. Only problem is that I couldn't get flavor to fit...

    All my other builds ended up using something untenable, so...

  10. - Top - End - #130
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Private-Prinny's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Quote Originally Posted by Amechra View Post
    Spoiler
    Show
    Divine Bard 3/Warlock 4/Ardent Dilettante 9/Ghost Savage Progression 2/Ardent Dilettante +1. It would have worked because a least invocation counts as a 1st level Arcane spell for prerequisites; this is how Warlock can get in to Arcane Trickster. Discarded because it was weak as hell, and MAD.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Actually, that build is illegal. Your caster level for invocations will work, but the invocations themselves don't count as an X-Level spell. A warlock could get into Mindbender, which requires Charm Person, since the invocation produces the necessary effect. They could get into Blood Magus, since their caster level for invocations can go above 5th. They can't get into Ardent Dilettante because they don't actually get 1st level spells.

    Quote Originally Posted by Complete Arcane p.72
    Characters or creatures that use spell-like abilities or invocations never learn the arcane circumlocutions of logic and mental training necessary for advanced spellcasting. As such, requirements for feats and prestige classes based on specific levels of spells cast (“Able to cast 3rd-level arcane spells,” for example) cannot be met by spell-like abilities or invocations—not even spell-like abilities or invocations that allow a character to use a specific arcane spell of the appropriate level or higher.
    Last edited by Private-Prinny; 2011-01-14 at 09:40 PM.
    Quotebox
    Spoiler
    Show
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Moron View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Optimystik View Post
    'Adding up numbers' is completely independent of roleplay. What you're saying makes as much sense as "peeling a banana is not a good way to drive."


  11. - Top - End - #131
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Amechra's Avatar

    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Where I live.

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Spoiler
    Show
    Ah, misread that. Good thing I didn't enter it.

  12. - Top - End - #132
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Tam_OConnor's Avatar

    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    The cradle of humanity
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Must...resist...reading spoilers until my judging is finished... Looking forward to the builds!

  13. - Top - End - #133
    Halfling in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Republic of Texas
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Since it's past midnight GMT, I suppose I can post this, but I'll Spoiler it for the benefit of those who are submitting late.

    Spoiler
    Show
    The reason I asked about spell-like abilities earlier in the thread was because I was hoping to cheese out the skills and arcane casting reqs in one go by using Factotum. But, since it says that Factotums are actually using spell-likes instead of spells. . .

    On a side note, what would be the legality of meeting arcane reqs with Shadowcaster? The book actually says that mysteries are cast "As arcane spells", until the caster gets high enough level to make them spell-like.

  14. - Top - End - #134
    Titan in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Kitchener/Waterloo
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Quote Originally Posted by Clepto View Post
    Since it's past midnight GMT, I suppose I can post this, but I'll Spoiler it for the benefit of those who are submitting late.

    Spoiler
    Show
    The reason I asked about spell-like abilities earlier in the thread was because I was hoping to cheese out the skills and arcane casting reqs in one go by using Factotum. But, since it says that Factotums are actually using spell-likes instead of spells. . .

    On a side note, what would be the legality of meeting arcane reqs with Shadowcaster? The book actually says that mysteries are cast "As arcane spells", until the caster gets high enough level to make them spell-like.
    Spoiler
    Show
    I've heard it mentioned that Shadowcasters can qualify for both arcane and divine casting prestige classes. I would imagine such a rule would be in the PrC section of the shadowcaster part of ToM.
    Lord Raziere herd I like Blasphemy, so Urpriest Exalted as a Malefactor

    Meet My Monstrous Guide to Monsters. Everything you absolutely need to know about Monsters and never thought you needed to ask.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mithril Leaf View Post
    One of the unwritten rules of Giantitp is that Urpriest is always right.
    Trophy!
    Spoiler
    Show


    original Urpriest (by Andraste)

  15. - Top - End - #135
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Akal Saris's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2007

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Quote Originally Posted by Urpriest View Post
    Spoiler
    Show
    I've heard it mentioned that Shadowcasters can qualify for both arcane and divine casting prestige classes. I would imagine such a rule would be in the PrC section of the shadowcaster part of ToM.
    Response
    Spoiler
    Show
    Besides Shadowcasters, which I don't think qualify for this PrC by themselves, there's also the Savant and the Sha'ir, which are arcane+divine casters without multiclassing.

    Whisper Gnome Savant 10/Ardent Dilettante 10 is a perfectly good build, in fact. It was my intended entry, but this is my 1st week of work & school and I couldn't decide on a real focus besides the usual factotum-style tricks with poison, iajutsu, and stealth, so I didn't work too hard on it.
    Handbooks: (Hosted on the new MixMax forums)
    [3.5] The Poison Handbook
    [3.5] (New) Master of Shrouds Handbook
    [3.5 Base Class] Healer's Handbook

    Trophies!
    Spoiler
    Show

    Thanks to Strategos and Jumilk for the awesome Iron Chef trophies!

  16. - Top - End - #136
    Firbolg in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    While it's past the deadline, I would encourage everyone to refrain from potential build posting/discussion until the Big Reveal. The deadline has been pushed back before, you know...
    Quote Originally Posted by Vaz View Post
    Ponies, the Kim Karsdashian of GITP.
    This is what happens when they let me DM:
    Beyond the Horizon IC / OOC
    A Time to Die: Alpha IC / Bravo IC / OOC

  17. - Top - End - #137
    Halfling in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Republic of Texas
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Quote Originally Posted by Urpriest View Post
    Spoiler
    Show
    I've heard it mentioned that Shadowcasters can qualify for both arcane and divine casting prestige classes. I would imagine such a rule would be in the PrC section of the shadowcaster part of ToM.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Actually, I just read that part of the book to double check. Relevant text:

    Levels in shadowcaster do not qualify a character for prestige
    classes with the following entry requirements:
    • A caster level requirement where the type (arcane or divine)
    is specified. Exception: Shadowcasters can qualify for the
    mystic theurge prestige class (DMG 192). In order to do so,
    they are allowed to substitute the ability to cast 2nd-level
    mysteries for the ability to cast 2nd-level spells. They must
    meet all other requirements for the prestige class normally.
    In addition, if a shadowcaster takes cleric levels to meet
    the divine spellcasting requirement, he must be devoted
    to a god that grants access to one of the following domains:
    Knowledge, Magic, Darkness*, or Illusion*.
    *Domain described in Spell Compendium.
    • Ability to cast spells of X level where the type (arcane or
    divine) is specified.
    • Ability to cast a specific spell, even if a mystery exists with
    a similar effect

    Immediately above that, it states that they DO qualify for classes that specify caster level, but no type. Similar to warlocks qualifying for some classes. Also, it specifically states that they DO qualify for Mystic Theurge, but nothing else that specifies arcane caster level.

  18. - Top - End - #138
    Titan in the Playground
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Sent! Bless you, Shinken, for unofficially extending the deadline!

    I doubt that I'll place, but I'm looking forward to seeing how the judges deal with mine.
    In the Beginning Was the Word, and the Word Was Suck: A Guide to Truenamers

    Quote Originally Posted by Doc Roc View Post
    Gentlefolk, learn from Zaq's example, and his suffering. Remember, seven out of eleven players who use truenamer lose their ability to taste ice cream.
    Come join the Iron Chef Optimization Challenge in the Playground E6 Appetizer Edition! We're currently cooking for round 35. Everyone is welcome!

    My compiled Iron Chef stuff!

    ~ Gay all day, queer all year ~

  19. - Top - End - #139
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Cieyrin's Avatar

    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Wisconsin
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Quote Originally Posted by Zaq View Post
    I doubt that I'll place, but I'm looking forward to seeing how the judges deal with mine.
    Ah, ye of little faith. We've had first timers place before and I don't see this as any exception.
    Goblin Cannon Crew avatar by Vrythas.
    Spoiler
    Show

    Gnome Gun Mage avatar by NEO|Phyte
    Quote Originally Posted by Mulletmanalive View Post
    Damn you Cieyrin! Cieyrin!!!!!read as Khaaaaan!

    My badges! :D
    My Homebrew
    The Gunslinger's Handbook
    Archetype Combo List!

  20. - Top - End - #140
    Titan in the Playground
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Well, mine has a few problems, some of which are glaringly obvious. I won't say more for fear of identifying myself, but I'm more in this to see the comments than to get the scores.

    But hey, the door's open. Let's see what comes of this thing.
    In the Beginning Was the Word, and the Word Was Suck: A Guide to Truenamers

    Quote Originally Posted by Doc Roc View Post
    Gentlefolk, learn from Zaq's example, and his suffering. Remember, seven out of eleven players who use truenamer lose their ability to taste ice cream.
    Come join the Iron Chef Optimization Challenge in the Playground E6 Appetizer Edition! We're currently cooking for round 35. Everyone is welcome!

    My compiled Iron Chef stuff!

    ~ Gay all day, queer all year ~

  21. - Top - End - #141
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Amechra's Avatar

    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Where I live.

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    I really hope this isn't like last time. I was hitting myself for making glaring mistakes.

    However, I covered my bases this time. Wooh!

  22. - Top - End - #142
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    NecromancerGuy

    Join Date
    Aug 2008

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    I thought the cut off date was yesterday, anyone know when the builds are going up?
    Quote Originally Posted by Alabenson
    Evil Intelligence is knowing the precise ritual that will allow you to destroy the peaceful kingdom that banished you.

    Evil Wisdom is understanding that you probably shouldn’t perform said ritual while you’re standing in the estimated blast radius.

  23. - Top - End - #143
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    kestrel404's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jul 2009

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    It was. TS has been MIA. The builds will probably show up when he does. Patience, grasshopper.

  24. - Top - End - #144
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Cieyrin's Avatar

    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Wisconsin
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    *pokes thread for the shinken to remember his deadline was yesterday*
    Goblin Cannon Crew avatar by Vrythas.
    Spoiler
    Show

    Gnome Gun Mage avatar by NEO|Phyte
    Quote Originally Posted by Mulletmanalive View Post
    Damn you Cieyrin! Cieyrin!!!!!read as Khaaaaan!

    My badges! :D
    My Homebrew
    The Gunslinger's Handbook
    Archetype Combo List!

  25. - Top - End - #145
    Firbolg in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Yeah, shink, hope everything's ok and you're just enjoying your weekend too much to post.
    Quote Originally Posted by Vaz View Post
    Ponies, the Kim Karsdashian of GITP.
    This is what happens when they let me DM:
    Beyond the Horizon IC / OOC
    A Time to Die: Alpha IC / Bravo IC / OOC

  26. - Top - End - #146
    Banned
     
    true_shinken's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Hello, guys! Sorry for being so late. I had a very busy weekend, with relatives visiting and a 14 hour long D&D session (it was all shades of awesome).
    Now, for the big reveal!

  27. - Top - End - #147
    Banned
     
    true_shinken's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Gotta see it all, gotta see it all!


    Quote Originally Posted by Aesc Duan Dee
    Overview:
    Spoiler
    Show
    Aesc Duan Dee
    {table=head]Level|Class|Base Attack<br> Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Skills|Feats|Class Features

    1st|Rogue 1|
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +2
    |
    +0
    |4 Disable Device, 4 Craft (Trapmaking), 4 Craft (Poisonmaking), 4 Search, 4 Open Lock, 4 Hide, 4 Move Silently, 4 Spot, 4 Listen, 4 Tumble, 4 Knowledge:Local|Able Learner|Trapfinding, +1d6 Sneak Attack

    2nd|Binder 1|
    +0
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |+1 Disable Device (5), +1 Open Lock (5), +1 Craft (Trapmaking) (5), +1 Search (5), +1 Tumble (5)||Soul Binding

    3rd|Warlock 1|
    +0
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +4
    |+1 Disable Device (6), +1 Craft (Trapmaking) (6), +1 Search (6), +1 Hide (5), +1 Move Silently (5)|Blend Into Shadows|Eldritch Blast 1d6, Invocation (Darkness)

    4th|Ranger 1|
    +1
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |+1 Disable Device (7), +1 Craft (Trapmaking) (7), +1 Search (7), +1 Hide (6), +1 Move Silently (6), 4 Survival|Track (Ranger Bonus)|Spiritual Connection

    5th|Swordsage 1|
    +1
    |
    +4
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |+1 Disable Device (8), +1 Craft (Trapmaking) (8), +1 Search (8), +1 Hide (7), +1 Move Silently (7), +4 Knowledge: Local (8)|Weapon Focus: Stone Dragon Weapons (Discipline Focus)|Maneuvers, Quick to Act +1

    6th|Trapsmith 1|
    +1
    |
    +4
    |
    +8
    |
    +6
    |+2 Spot (6), +2 Listen (6), +4 Craft (Poisonmaking) (8), +1 Hide (8)|Darkstalker|Booby Traps, Spells, Master Disarmer, Trap Sense +1

    7th|Ardent Dilettante 1|
    +1
    |
    +4
    |
    +10
    |
    +6
    |4 Knowledge: Nature, 4 Intimidate, +1 Move Silently (8)||Heightened Senses, Lore

    8th|Ardent Dilettante 2|
    +2
    |
    +4
    |
    +11
    |
    +6
    |5 Perform (Storytelling), +2 Craft (Trapmaking) (10), +1 Hide (9), +1 Move Silently (9)||Enthrall

    9th|Warblade 1|
    +3
    |
    +6
    |
    +11
    |
    +6
    |+2 Spot (8), +2 Listen (8), 3 Concentration|Practiced Spellcaster (Trapsmith)|Maneuvers, Battle Clarity (Reflex), Weapon Aptitude

    10th|Ardent Dilettante 3|
    +3
    |
    +7
    |
    +11
    |
    +7
    |+3 Perform (Storytelling) (8), +4 Survival (8), Trick: Listen to This||Joie de Vivre

    11th|Ardent Dilettante 4|
    +4
    |
    +7
    |
    +12
    |
    +7
    |+2 Craft (Poisonmaking) (10), +2 Craft (Trapmaking) (12), +2 Concentration (5), +3 Search (11)|Cold Endurance (Bonus)|Sense Link

    12th|Disciple of Thrym 1|
    +5
    |
    +7
    |
    +12
    |
    +9
    |+1 Hide (10), +1 Move Silently (10), +1 Craft (Trapmaking) (13), +1 Craft (Poisonmaking) (11), +1 Disable Device (9)|Touchstone: City of the Dead|Spells, Detect Fire, Protection of Winter

    13th|Sand Shaper 1|
    +5
    |
    +7
    |
    +12
    |
    +11
    |5 Diplomacy, +1 Hide (11), +1 Move Silently (11)||Desert Insight, Dust Magic, Sand Shape

    14th|Ardent Dilettante 5|
    +5
    |
    +7
    |
    +12
    |
    +11
    |4 Knowledge: Religion, +2 Spot (10), +2 Listen (10), +1 Craft (Poisonmaking) (12)||Scent

    15th|Ardent Dilettante 6|
    +6
    |
    +8
    |
    +13
    |
    +12
    |+4 Knowledge: Religion (8), +2 Hide (13), +2 Move Silently (13), +1 Disable Device (10)|Craft Magic Arms and Armor|Seen It Before

    16th|Ardent Dilettante 7|
    +6
    |
    +8
    |
    +13
    |
    +12
    | +5 Diplomacy (10), +2 Craft (Trapmaking) (15), +2 Survival (10)|Skill Focus (Knowledge: Religion) (Bonus)|

    17th|Divine Oracle 1|
    +6
    |
    +8
    |
    +13
    |
    +14
    |+2 Hide (15), +2 Move Silently (15), +1 Craft (Poisonmaking) (13)||Oracle Domain, Scry Bonus

    18th|Ardent Dilettante 8|
    +7
    |
    +8
    |
    +14
    |
    +14
    |+3 Craft (Trapmaking) (18), +3 Spot (13), +3 Listen (13)|Poison Spell|See It Again

    19th|Ardent Dilettante 9|
    +7
    |
    +9
    |
    +14
    |
    +15
    |+4 Hide (19), +4 Move Silently (19), +1 Search (12)||Blindsense 10'

    20th|Ardent Dilettante 10|
    +8
    |
    +9
    |
    +15
    |
    +15
    |+2 Hide (21), +2 Move Silently (21), +2 Spot (15), +2 Listen (15), +1 Craft (Trapmaking) (16)|Enhanced Illumian Sigils|Death Holds No Mysteries[/table]


    I wanna see the very best
    Like no one ever has
    To try things is my real test
    To feel them is my cause
    I will travel across the land
    Searching far and wide
    Find sensations and understand
    The feeling that's outside

    (Sensation! Gotta see it all!)
    It's what I see
    I know it's my destiny
    (Sensation!)
    Oh, you're what I feel
    In a world I think is real

    (Sensation! Gotta see it all!)
    A sight so true
    Our courage will pull us through
    You find me and I'll find you
    Sensation!
    Gotta see it all (Gotta see it all!)



    "Still nervous, kid?" Aesc smiled down at the potential new Sensate, who was sweating as she obsessively checked her notes.
    "Yes, sir. I mean, what if I forget something? How can I possibly describe everything?"
    "Ah, you can't worry about that sort of thing. We know what it's like. Besides, you should savor your nervousness! Have you ever before felt quite like this? The feeling of anticipation before baring your soul to those whom you hope to make your peers? If I were you, I'd be more focused on this new feeling; there's really nothing quite like it!"
    The young candidate's eyes brightened a little bit, though her trembling didn't really get any better. "You're . . . you're right, Mr. Dee! Normally when I get nervous I get sort of a pit in my stomach, but this time it feels more like my heart's racing, with a touch of lightheadedness!"
    Aesc chuckled, his typically raspy voice making it echo a bit. "You might even want to write down what you feel about it. You really don't want to forget this sort of thing. I'm sure I've forgotten more than I can remember knowing in the first place. You don't want that, do you?"
    "No, sir . . . but you, forgetting things? Surely you don't mean that! Your stories are half the reason I decided to join the Society in the first place! In fact, you couldn't tell me another one, could you? It would help take my mind off this, and it would probably prove to you that you remember more than you think you do."
    The sigils over Aesc's head spun slightly faster as he pondered her request. "I still think that you should focus on your nervousness a bit more, but if you insist . . . let me tell you about my past."

    Spoiler
    Show
    Aesc Duan Dee, an Uurkrau Illumian, grew up in a relatively big port city on the Prime Material Plane. A rogue of some mechanical skill, he drifted from organization to organization, helping out with locks and traps and occasionally pulling the odd minor heist. It was a workable (if relatively unstable) lifestyle for several years, until one such heist went a little bit too right.

    Aesc had broken into the house of a minor noble and made off with a large leather book. The occult market being what it is, he knew that it would be a while before it would be safe to fence such a distinctive score. As an Illumian, Aesc had always had some measure of curiosity, so in the days and weeks before the authorities stopped looking for his prize, he decided to read the book and see what it contained.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Aesc is now a 1st level rogue who acts pretty much like any other 1st level rogue. He's happier as a skillmonkey than as a combatant, but the occasional sneak attack really isn't bad.


    He had been expecting spells, but instead found weird magical sigils or runes that seemed to beckon to him. Knowing the value of symbols and sigils, Aesc tried to copy one sigils to take to a more magically inclined friend, but as he did so, he was shocked to find a figure spring forth from it. A voice echoed in his mind:
    "As you have brought me life, so I bring you my favor. All I request is to feel as much as possible in the brief time we have together."

    Pleasantly surprised by the new skills this entity gave him, Aesc was more than happy to accept the thing's urging to go out and sate his curiosity in every manner possible. This pattern continued for a while, and life was good. Aesc gradually gathered two things: first, that he had made some kind of pact with an otherworldly entity, and second, that doing so was amazingly easy and satisfying. Searching out other kinds of pacts, Aesc discovered that he was more in tune with magic than he had previously thought, even able to slip into darkness as others watched—or didn't—in awe.
    Spoiler
    Show

    Aesc has bound his first vestige and unwittingly made some kind of warlock pact. The most useful vestiges at this level are generally Leraje (for the bonus to hiding and the free Precise Shot) and Aym (since being on fire is still a solid defense at this point, and the touch attack isn't bad if you can get into flanking). His warlock abilities give him access to Blend Into Shadows, making him even better at hiding than your average rogue.


    No matter what kind of pacts tied strings to his soul, Aesc always felt one drive above any other: feeling. The vestiges, as he found they were called, just wanted to feel once again what it meant to be alive, a desire to which Aesc could relate perhaps just a little bit too well. The constant search for something new led him to take up the art of tracking, since following the trail of someone or something almost always led to something new and exciting. The animals and plants seemed to speak with him, telling him new and exciting secrets.

    Of course, with this sort of reckless attitude necessarily comes some measure of danger. Following the wrong trail often got him into trouble, though none so great as the time that he got taken hostage by a raiding party of Githyanki. Aesc had accidentally followed the trail of an adventuring party who were themselves on the trail of a band of Githyanki raiders. Aesc ended up getting captured and whisked away in one of the great ships of the astral pirates.

    It was only a fortuitous counter-raid by a group of Githzerai as the ship sailed through the silver sea of the Astral Plane that kept Aesc from being sold into slavery on Gehenna; the Githzerai did not particularly care about him, but were happy to do anything to spit in the eyes of the Githyanki, so he was allowed to follow them back to their monastery on Limbo and train as a novice.

    Naturally, Aesc's chaotic nature did not go over too well with the Githzerai, and some part of him longed for the days of fiddling with traps and locks. It was not long after he had mastered the basics of their martial arts that he was expelled from the monastery for booby-trapping the great hall from top to bottom simply out of boredom. Aesc would later note that the traps weren't quite the same as he remembered them being when he was back home; interestingly, the weird magic entities studded throughout his soul led him to see each trap as a kind of magical sigil in and of itself, giving him access to a new kind of arcane power he never would have suspected. The Githzerai did not care about this, of course, and simply unceremoniously deposited him in Sigil as soon as the next portal thereto opened up.

    Spoiler
    Show
    Aesc has now taken levels in ranger, swordsage, and trapsmith. His eldritch blast and sneak attack aren't quite cutting it as much as they used to, so he supplements his skills with traps (which he usually creates while hidden, to make himself less vulnerable), poisons, and a little bit of trapsmith magic. He has Mountain Hammer, which gives him some out-of-combat utility, and the Spiritual Connection ACF for ranger allows him to speak with animals and plants three times per day, which is likely to make gathering materials for poisons easier.


    Getting deposited in the Cage (as many bashers call the City of Doors) turned out to be the luckiest break that Aesc ever got. Aside from there being more to see and do than a cutter can find anywhere else in the multiverse, Sigil was home to a society of kindred spirits: the Society of Sensation, with whom Aesc immediately joined. He leapt at the opportunity to follow different Sensates on any kind of adventure at all.

    Sponsored by the Sensates, Aesc traveled from plane to plane, learning more and more about what he already knew and finding out things he didn't even think were possible. In any locale, Aesc was always excited to try to meet with the natives, often learning some of their ways and leaving some of his own behind. He trained with a band of hobgoblins on Acheron, formed a diplomatic relationship with the frost giants of Jotunheim, compared the smithing styles of the dwarves on Mt. Celestia and the dwarves of Ysgard, and even returned to the Prime (to a desert just across the mountains from his hometown) just for a change of pace. Rapidly climbing through the ranks of the Sensates, Aesc's curiosity was often indulged, though never satisfied.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Aesc uses Ardent Dilettante to augment his Trapsmith casting. He's fully a support character at this point and does not really care to attack his foes directly; his Warblade maneuvers are all utilitarian in nature. After taking Disciple of Thrym and Sand Shaper, Aesc lets one more level of Ardent Dilettante count toward the final level of Trapsmith casting, then dives into advancing Disciple of Thrym casting.


    Feeling a new kind of magic in his soul after the affair with the frost giants, Aesc experimented with it and put it through its paces. Though icy in nature, he found that he was able to use a hot or even deserty flavor of magic with his new power. Furthermore, Aesc felt in his soul tugs of power so strong that they threatened to tear him apart; these came from at least two sources so opposite in nature that Aesc had no choice but to try them both until he had felt what they were like.

    Blasts of purest good and foulest evil ripped through Aesc as he tested his new powers as best as he could. The pain that the power wracked his body with was unlike any that he had ever experienced, which was saying a lot for someone of his background. Naturally, he kept doing it, trying and failing to find words for it every time but relishing the experience nonetheless.

    Wanting to know more about this, Aesc started studying the teachings of good and the teachings of evil. He eventually submitted himself to the guidance and care of an enterprising cleric of knowledge, who sought to run tests on Aesc to see what he could learn about this. Under this cleric's watch, Aesc pushed himself farther and farther, feeling the planes tug on him like children playing a game of strength. One such experiment pushed his body a bit farther than his soul could easily repair, and Aesc found himself standing in the realm of the dead.

    Aesc's soul, pulled in so many directions at once, didn't end up anywhere simple; instead, he saw countless planes and experiences all calling to him and vying for his attention. More than that, he saw the connections between the planes in ways he had never noticed before; when his cleric friend had pulled his soul back into his body, Aesc understood more than he ever had in the past.

    Spoiler
    Show
    Aesc has discovered Sanctified and Vile spells. He uses Naberius to heal the stat damage that they cause, making them a useful tool in his box. His efforts to understand where these spells came from led him into the Divine Oracle class, which adds even more tricks to his arsenal.


    Blessed with a new understanding of how to see things, Aesc continued trying to see it all, eventually climbing to the highest levels of the Sensates. Today, Aesc still holds the distinction of being one of the first to combine so many forms of magic into one body at once, a feeling which he will try and fail to describe until the day his name is put into the dead-book for good.
    Last edited by true_shinken; 2011-01-16 at 07:56 PM.

  28. - Top - End - #148
    Banned
     
    true_shinken's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    Now, back to Pokemon Part two of Aesc's build.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aesc
    Note: all numbers assume no items or bonuses from high ability scores.


    Aesc Duan Dee
    Chaotic Neutral Uurkrau Illumian
    Rogue/Binder/Warlock/Ranger/Swordsage/Warblade/Trapsmith/Disciple of Thrym/Sand Shaper/Ardent Dilettante

    Starting Stats:

    STR 8
    DEX 14 (level-ups go here)
    CON 14
    INT 16
    WIS 14
    CHA 12

    Hit Dice: 6 + 13d8 + 4d6 + d10 + d12

    Maneuvers and Stances Known:
    Spoiler
    Show

    (ECL 5, Swordsage 1): Shadow Jaunt, Mountain Hammer, Child of Shadow, Sudden Leap, Wind Stride, Cloak of Deception, Fire Riposte
    (ECL 9, Warblade 1): Leading the Charge, White Raven Tactics, Wall of Blades, Iron Heart Surge


    Spells per day / known (Trapsmith):
    Spoiler
    Show
    Spells per day/Spells known
    {table=head]Level|0lvl|1st|2nd|3rd|4th|5th|6th|7th|8th|9th

    1st|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    2nd|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    3rd|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    4th|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    5th|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    6th|-|1/2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    7th|-|1/2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    8th|-|2/3|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    9th|-|2/3|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    10th|-|2/3|1/2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    11th|-|3/4|2/3|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    12th|-|3/4|2/3|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    13th|-|3/4|2/3|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    14th|-|3/4|2/3|1/2|-|-|-|-|-|-

    15th|-|3/4|2/3|1/2|-|-|-|-|-|-

    16th|-|3/4|2/3|1/2|-|-|-|-|-|-

    17th|-|3/4|2/3|1/2|-|-|-|-|-|-

    18th|-|3/4|2/3|1/2|-|-|-|-|-|-

    19th|-|3/4|2/3|1/2|-|-|-|-|-|-

    20th|-|3/4|2/3|1/2|-|-|-|-|-|-[/table]

    Spells known:
    ECL 6: Haste, Gaseous Form
    ECL 9: Dispel Magic
    ECL 10: Dimension Door, Stone Shape
    ECL 11: Arcane Sight, Resilient Sphere
    ECL 13: All spells granted by Desert Insight
    ECL 14: Wall of Stone, Fabricate


    Spells per day (Disciple of Thrym):
    Spoiler
    Show

    Spells per day/Spells Known
    {table=head]Level|0lvl|1st|2nd|3rd|4th|5th|6th|7th|8th|9th

    1st|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    2nd|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    3rd|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    4th|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    5th|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    6th|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    7th|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    8th|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    9th|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    10th|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    11th|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    12th|-|1|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    13th|-|1|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    14th|-|1|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    15th|-|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    16th|-|2|1|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    17th|-|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    18th|-|3|2|1|-|-|-|-|-|-

    19th|-|3|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-

    20th|-|4|3|2|1|-|-|-|-|-[/table]

    Gets all spells listed in Desert Insight, since it does not specify that only one class gains the benefit.
    Adds Oracle Domain at ECL 17.


    Strategies:
    Spoiler
    Show
    Aesc is a support character. He is not meant to be a frontline fighter, and he'll never win any damage contests. That said, he is a capable skillmonkey, has some useful low-level magic, and is not without his tricks.

    Trapsmith is a beautiful class not only because it gets a very interesting casting progression but also because booby traps keep getting better with ranks, not with class levels (advanced versus basic traps notwithstanding). Thus, the DC on Aesc's traps stays competitive even at higher levels. Aesc's high Craft (Poisonmaking) skill makes it easy for him to apply poison to his traps, giving them an edge even when the damage tends to fall short.

    Also, putting Spell Storing bolts (which he eventually can make by himself) in his crossbows gives him a lot of versatility with the crossbow trap. Spells can be preloaded, which is nice, and his spell lists aren't terrible once they're loaded into crossbow bolts. Lesser Shivering Touch alone should give his opponents pause, especially when it's been dunked in some kind of nasty poison. Preparation is the name of the game; setting up the bolts with the spells and the poison ahead of time is quite useful, and of course traps always work better if you have the chance of setting them up before combat.

    Aesc is a capable scout. Heightened Senses keeps his perception abilities good, and he's stealthy enough to get to where he wants to be. Lore lets him make sense of what he finds. Blend Into Shadows is, of course, fantastic, especially if you keep a rock with Darkness on it in your belt pouch, so you can always be near magical darkness. He's pretty good at tracking, especially once he gets Scent. One of his best scouting tricks comes from Sense Link: the creature with whom your senses are linked does not need to be a humanoid. Indeed, it could be a mouse, a sparrow, a horse, or something else innocuous. Aesc can use the Spiritual Connection ACF (which lets him speak with animals and plants) to convince a small animal beneath notice to follow a desired target or slip into somewhere tricky, Aesc's senses following in tow. He can do this through Diplomacy, Intimidate, or perhaps simply asking nicely with a morsel of food.

    Aesc's maneuvers are almost entirely defensive or utilitarian. Mountain Hammer is intended for use outside of combat, where it basically functions as Disintegrate (if a bit slower). Most of his maneuvers should be self-explanatory, but none of them are really intended as offense.

    While he has to rummage into his bag of tricks a bit more than other people, Aesc is still decent at supporting his party. The spells from Trapsmith, notably haste, are famously useful as utility or buffs, and Joie de Vivre certainly doesn't hurt. See It Again can be used to great effect to copy, for example, a partymate's high-level spell, or it can just be used to get another charge out of his own small number of daily spells. White Raven Tactics is as good on Aesc as it is on anyone else. Enthrall's save DC lags a bit at the end, but is still relatively useful out of combat. Ask your GM if an Enthralled opponent will notice you setting up a trap; they may or may not.

    The vestiges Aesc binds change across his career. In the beginning, he favors Aym and Leraje, but as he levels, Naberius tends to come to the fore, for reasons which should be obvious: he heals the stat damage done by Sanctified/Corrupt spells (or by slipping with the poison) and make Diplomacy easier (which helps with convincing small animals to be scouts, among other things).

    Aesc's caster level is not as bad as it may seem. He gets to add a bonus from Dust Magic, a bonus from his Krau sigil, and (for Trapsmith) a bonus from Practiced Spellcaster. (It's actually quite difficult to get a higher Trapsmith caster level without resorting to stacking tricks like Master Spellthief!) His Uur sigil adds to his DEX-based skills and his initiative modifier, and the Uurkrau power word lets him base his bonus spells per day on Dexterity, which may or may not come up depending on how free the GM is with stat-boosting items. If he has access to them, though, he can boost both of his casting classes with just DEX.


    Design Philosophy:
    Spoiler
    Show
    I wanted to make an Ardent Dilettante with the following restrictions:

    -No bards.
    -No factotums.
    -No more than one level in any non-AD class.
    -No base classes that give arcane or divine spells.

    Under those restrictions, a lot of the easy avenues got cut off, so I had to find alternatives. I think, overall, that I have succeeded in making a fun support character, even if I had to sacrifice power to do so.


    Questions and Answers:
    Spoiler
    Show

    Q: What's up with the Sanctified and Corrupt spells?
    A: Book of Exalted Deeds and Book of Vile Darkness do not specify that only Good or Evil characters can cast Sanctified or Corrupt spells, and that any prepared caster has access to them. Being neutral and dedicated to trying new things, it makes sense for Aesc to try using both. Naberius serves to heal the stat damage done, making the costs less painful. There aren't that many Sanctified or Corrupt spells that are overwhelmingly useful, though casting them into a Spell Storing crossbow bolt can be an interesting experience. Poison Spell works when casting a spell into a Spell Storing bolt, so you can potentially have two kinds of poison on one bolt.

    Q: Why no UMD?
    A: I wanted to assume absolutely no magic items (beyond what you eventually get to craft yourself with Craft Magic Arms and Armor). UMD is useless without something to use it on, and I didn't want to assume that there would be free access to a magic mart. If you want to add in UMD, it's easy enough to tweak the skills (mostly by slowing down Hide/MS/Spot/Listen a point or two apiece).

    Q: An Illumian with Able Learner?
    A: Yup! They're humanoids with the human subtype. If the human subtype doesn't make you count as human, I don't know what does.


    Variants:
    Spoiler
    Show

    If flaws are allowed, Craven makes your meager Sneak Attack stay relevant for longer, and Hidden Talent (Psionic Minor Creation) does wonderful things for your poisons. If you use fractional BAB and saves, your BAB skyrockets (relatively speaking) while your saves become a lot more reasonable; in fact, with just a little bit of shuffling, you may be able to get into Divine Crusader instead of Disciple of Thrym, and doing so will give access to higher-level spells faster. Taking 3 levels of Trapsmith (dropping Divine Oracle, and either Warblade or Sand Shaper) gets you access to advanced booby traps, but doing so goes against the "only one level" policy. Handy items include general skill boosters for any of your important skills, wands and scrolls if you use the UMD variant, basic defensive gear, and basic stat boosters. A ring of wizardry and/or some pearls of power can increase your magical longevity.


    Sources:
    Spoiler
    Show
    Player's Handbook (Rogue, Ranger)
    Races of Destiny (Illumian, Able Learner)
    Tome of Magic (Binder)
    Tome of Battle (Swordsage, Warblade)
    Complete Arcane (Warlock, Practiced Spellcaster)
    Complete Divine (Divine Oracle)
    Drow of the Underdark (Blend Into Shadows, Poison Spell)
    Complete Champion (Spiritual Connection ACF)
    Frostburn (Disciple of Thrym, Cold Endurance)
    Sandstorm (Sand Shaper, Touchstone)
    Book of Exalted Deeds (Sanctified spells)
    Book of Vile Darkness (Corrupt spells)
    Planar Handbook (Ardent Dilettante)
    Dungeonscape (Trapsmith)
    Last edited by true_shinken; 2011-01-16 at 07:58 PM.

  29. - Top - End - #149
    Banned
     
    true_shinken's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    JB: Hm... It's just sliding on your knees.
    KG: Is it? Or is it the single most powerful stage-move in any rocker's arsenal?
    - Tenacious D in the Pick of Destiny
    Quote Originally Posted by Slide
    The Slide
    Spoiler
    Show

    The Slide was created like any other Kaorti, through the horribly painful transformation of a humanoid victim. In its case the Slide was at one time a human child. With no recollection of its former life this fact has no real meaning to the Slide. His earliest memories were of pain. Being born, if you can call it being born, into a world that causes pain just by being in it is no way for a creature to grow up, even if one is a Kaorti. Its early years were spent in with a small amount of his people that had taken over a remote fort in the middle of a ruined castle that no ordinary citizens of the world visited anymore. While the resin suits that the Kaorti create protect them from the painful material plane the Slide grew to relish the pain and unlike his people he had grander aspirations than delivering the material plane into the far realms. In fact he thought that such a thing would be a tragic occurrence. He visited the far realms a few times with his people but even with the vivid chaotic sights, sounds, and smells of the far realms they had nothing on the realness of the Material plane. He started to love the world and wanted to see everything there was in it. He learned to travel to the ethereal plane and eventually to possess objects and creatures. Through these things he could fully experience the world and everything it had in it. Eventually he found his way to the Society of Sensation while riding in the body of a sensate that ironically did not even know he was there. He found the Society tenets to be inspiring and the decided that the experience of dying was something that he had to know. While taking his sensate vehicle into one of the sensoriums he just stopped breathing, feeling the air go from his lungs, and the weakness and panic of the body were awe inspiring. He went on to find new ways to experience death. Jumping from a high tower as a young maiden, bleeding out as a poor servant boy, starving a wealthy merchant, all of these things brought new and profound experiences.

    The Slide keeps a low profile but has been known to thwart his own people’s attempts to destroy the Material plane as well as any other plans that would stop his manipulation of the populace of the material plane, all while leaving disturbing suicides in his wake.

    Progression:
    Spoiler
    Show

    Kaorti, Outsider (Evil, Extraplanar)
    32 point buy
    Str: 8, Dex: 8, Con:10, Int: 16, Wis: 12, Cha: 18
    Ending Stats
    Str: 4, Dex: 12, Con:10, Int: 20, Wis: 12, Cha: 28
    {table=head]ECL|Class|Base Attack |Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Skills|Feats|Class Features

    3rd|Outsider 1|
    +1
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    | (52+2) Perform: singing 4, Hide 2(cc), Diplomacy 2, Sense Motive 2(cc), Spot 2(cc), Listen 2(cc), Heal 4, Concentration 4, Intimidate 1, Knowledge: arcane 4, Knowledge: planes 4, Spellcraft 4, Use Magical Device 4, Survival 4|Apprentice(Entertainer) |
    4th|Outsider 2|
    +2
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    | (13) Perform: singing 1, Bluf 2(cc), Heal 1, Concentration 1, Intimidate 1, Knowledge: arcana 1, Knowledge: planes 1, Spellcraft 1, Use Magical Device 1, Survival 1 | |
    5th|Beguiler 1|
    +2
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +5
    | (11) Perform: singing 1, Hide 4, Spot 1, Listen 1, Concentrion 1, Knowledge: arcana 1, Search 2|Martial study: Moment of perfect clarity|Armored Mage, Trapfinding

    6th|Fiend of Possession 1|
    +2
    |
    +5
    |
    +5
    |
    +7
    | (7) Perform: singing 1, Hide 1, Spot 1, Listen 1, Bluff 1, Concentration 1(cc) ||Ethereal form, hide presence, possess object
    7th|Fiend of Possession 2|
    +3
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +8
    | (7) Perform: singing 1, Hide 1, Spot 1, Listen 1, Bluff 1, Concentration 1(cc) ||Curse, magic item

    8th|Fiend of Possession 3|
    +3
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +8
    | (7) Perform: singing 1, Hide 1, Spot 1, Listen 1, Bluff 1, Concentration 1(cc) |Improved Initiative |Control object

    9th|Fiend of Possession 4|
    +4
    |
    +7
    |
    +7
    |
    +9
    | (7) Perform: singing 1, Hide 1, Spot 1, Listen 1, Bluff 1, Concentration 1(cc) | |Animate object, possess creature

    10th|Fiend of Possession 5|
    +4
    |
    +7
    |
    +7
    |
    +9
    | (7) Perform: singing 1, Hide 1, Spot 1, Listen 1, Bluff 1, Concentration 1(cc) | |Ally or enemy, possess noncontinuous object

    11th|Fiend of Possession 6|
    +5
    |
    +8
    |
    +8
    |
    +10
    | (7) Perform: singing 1, Hide 1, Spot 1, Listen 1, Bluff 1, Concentration 1(cc) |Ability Focus (Possess creature)|Control creature

    12th|Ardent Dilettante 1|
    +5
    |
    +8
    |
    +10
    |
    +10
    | (11) Hide 1, Spot 1, Listen 1, Bluff 1, Concentration 1, Use Magical Device 1, Swim 5| |Heightened senses, lore

    13th|Ardent Dilettante 2|
    +6
    |
    +8
    |
    +11
    |
    +10
    | (11) Hide 1, Spot 4, Listen 4, Bluff 1, Concentration 1| |Enthrall

    14th|Ardent Dilettante 3|
    +6
    |
    +9
    |
    +11
    |
    +11
    | (11) Hide 1, Diplomacy 1, Sense Motive 1, Spot 1, Listen 1, Disguise 2, Concentration 1, Use Magical Device 1, Skill Trick: Collector of Stories|Ability Focus (Control creature) |Joie de vivre

    15th|Ardent Dilettante 4|
    +7
    |
    +9
    |
    +12
    |
    +11
    |(11) Hide 1, Diplomacy 1, Sense Motive 1, Spot 1, Listen 1, Disguise 2, Concentration 1, Use Magical Device 1, Skill trick: Spot the weak point|Death blow(b)|Sense link

    16th|Ardent Dilettante 5|
    +7
    |
    +9
    |
    +12
    |
    +11
    | (11) Hide 1, Diplomacy 1, Sense Motive 1, Spot 1, Listen 1, Disguise 1, Concentration 1, Use Magical Device 2, Skill trick: Listen to this||Scent

    17th|Ardent Dilettante 6|
    +8
    |
    +10
    |
    +13
    |
    +12
    | (11) Hide 1, Spot 1, Listen 1, Bluff 1, Disguise 1, Concentration 1, Use Magical Device 3, Skill trick: Assume quirk|Martial study: Insightful Strike|Seen it before

    18th|Ardent Dilettante 7|
    +8
    |
    +10
    |
    +13
    |
    +12
    | (11) Hide 1, Diplomacy 1, Sense Motive 1, Spot 1, Listen 1, Bluff 1, Disguise 1, Concentration 1, Use Magical Device 2, Search 1|Martial study: Mind over body(b)|

    19th|Ardent Dilettante 8|
    +9
    |
    +10
    |
    +14
    |
    +12
    | (11) Hide 1, Diplomacy 1, Sense Motive 1, Spot 1, Listen 1, Bluff 1, Disguise 1, Concentration 1, Use Magical Device 3| |See it again

    20th|Ardent Dilettante 9|
    +9
    |
    +11
    |
    +14
    |
    +13
    | (11) Hide 1, Diplomacy 1, Sense Motive 1, Spot 1, Listen 1, Bluff 1, Disguise 1, Concentration 1, Use Magical Device 3|Martial stance: Hearing the air |Blindsense 10 ft
    ||||||||

    19th*|Uncanny Trickster 1|
    +9
    |
    +11
    |
    +16
    |
    +13
    | (13) ||Bonus trick, favorite trick

    20th*|Uncanny Trickster 2|
    +10
    |
    +11
    |
    +17
    |
    +13
    | (13) |Martial study: Shadow stride|Bonus trick, favorite trick, Ardent Dilettante 10 (death holds no mysteries) [/table]
    Beguiler Casting
    {table=head]ECL|CL|0| 1st|2nd|3rd|4th|5th
    6th|1|
    5
    |
    3
    |
    -
    |
    -
    |
    -
    |
    -

    13th|2|
    6
    |
    4
    |
    -
    |
    -
    |
    -
    |
    -

    14th|3|
    6
    |
    5
    |
    -
    |
    -
    |
    -
    |
    -

    15th|4|
    6
    |
    6
    |
    3
    |
    -
    |
    -
    |
    -

    16th|5|
    6
    |
    6
    |
    4
    |
    -
    |
    -
    |
    -

    17th|6|
    6
    |
    6
    |
    5
    |
    3
    |
    -
    |
    -

    18th|7|
    6
    |
    6
    |
    6
    |
    4
    |
    -
    |
    -

    19th|8|
    6
    |
    6
    |
    6
    |
    5
    |
    3
    |
    -

    20th|9|
    6
    |
    6
    |
    6
    |
    6
    |
    4
    |
    -

    |||||||

    20th*|10|
    6
    |
    6
    |
    6
    |
    6
    |
    5
    |
    3
    [/table]
    * with level buy off


    Build Explanation
    Spoiler
    Show

    Build Explanation:
    The idea behind the build is that to truly sense new things you must sense them as a different person. Being able to possess any creature and experience pain, joy, and even death allows for more fulfilling experiences than feeling these things as one person with one set of senses. Slide stays ethereal unless he is currently possessing a creature and the creatures he possess do not last very long. Experiencing death is the greatest sensory experience possible. When controlling a creature he can do so for at least 15 rounds. As an NPC Slide would haunt a city seeking to experience death and suffering in a new and inspiring ways causing a rash of suicides. As an adventurer Slide seeks new experiences from stranger and more complex sources. Seeking out rare creatures or powerful figures through which to sense the world and eventually death.

    He has 9th level Beguiler casting allowing for 4th level spells but his many tactic is to possess the baddest enemy and either attack its allies or make it kill itself. He can coup de grace himself as a standard action if a coup de grace is likely to kill his possessed creature. His saves are fairly low but the Diamond mind maneuvers for using concentration in place of a save helps make up for them. The only spells that we won’t care about failing a save for are spells that end possession which are all will saves. If he finds himself unable to possess any creature in a combat situation he turns ethereal and leaves. He can perform UMD shenanigans if needed.
    His ethereal form ability allows him to get around the Kaorti’s natural vulnerability to the Material plane. He has some spell like abilities from being a Kaorti including alter self, color spray, feather fall, ray of enfeeblement, reduce, and spider climb.

    Secret Ingredient:
    Mechanically Ardent Dilettante doesn’t add a large amount to the build. It increases beguiler casting and increases his perception skills. Thematically however it provides a great insidious way to experience new things without harming oneself. Most creatures can only experience death once and experiencing it more than that requires the expense and inconvenience of being raised. His perception skills are fairly high and he has blindsense out to 30ft with Hearing the air. He also has a large amount of skill tricks at his disposal.
    The build requires Fiend of Possession more than Ardent Dilettante and it does what it does from ECL 11 when he can control a creature in order to cause it to kill itself.

    Equipment: The build requires no equipment and most of it wouldn’t be useable while possessing a creature. All of his equipment becomes ethereal with him and I think ability bonuses from items may stick with him. Getting a Tome of Leadership and Influence would be beneficial. With a +4 tome and +6 magic item his possession saves can reach 32 or higher.

    Options: If level buy off is available you can get 2 more levels for Uncanny Trickster to get to the 10th level Ardent Dilettante class features without having to die.

    A variant build based on the same idea of possession is playing a ghost human. You can take 4 levels of the ghost progression class on the wizards site and get the Malevolence power to mimic magic jar. It also qualifies for the dying and undeath requirement for the Ardent Dilettante. The Fiend of Possession build just seemed funner and allowed for better optimization of the actual possession method. The ghost build would have gone Paladin of Tyranny 4, Beguiler 1, Ardent Dilettante 10, Chameleon 1, Ghost 4. It would get 10th level chameleon casting allowing for 6th level arcane or divine spells each day. A ghost would also work well as a back story when the sensate kills himself the first time and just enjoys it so much he has to come back as a ghost to experience it again. The ghost build probably would have made a better contestant but time was not on my side, so goes procrastination.


    At ECL 20
    Spoiler
    Show

    Outsider 2, Beguiler 1, Fiend of Possession 6, Ardent Dilettante 9
    Kaorti, Medium Outsider (Evil, Extraplanar)
    Neutral Evil
    Hit Dice: 2d8 +1d6 +6d6 +9d8 (74 hp)
    Initiative: +1
    Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)
    Armor Class: 11 (touch: 11, flat-footed: 10)
    Base Attack/Grapple: +9/+6
    Attack: -
    Full Attack: -
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Attack options: -
    Special Actions: Possess creature (DC 27), control creature (DC 27),
    Saves: Fort +11, Ref +15, Will +14
    Abilities: Str 4, Dex 12, Con 10, Int 20, Wis 12, Cha 28
    Skills: Perform +17, Hide +22, Diplomacy +17, Sense Motive +14, Spot +27, Listen +32, Bluff +23, Disguise +18, Heal +14, Concentration +21, Intimidate +14, Knowledge: arcane +11, Knowledge: planes +10, Spellcraft +10, Use Magic Device +30, Survival 6, Search 17, Swim 2
    Skill tricks: Collector of Stories, Listen to This, Spot the weak point, Assume quirk
    Feats: Apprentice (entertainer), Martial Study: Moment of perfect clarity, Improved Initiative, Ability Focus (possess creature), Ability Focus (control creature), Death blow, Martial Study: Insightful Strike, Martial Study: Mind over body, Martial Stance: Hearing the air
    Challenge Rating: 20

    Possessions:


    Sources
    Spoiler
    Show

    Complete Adventurer (feats)
    DMG 2 (Apprentice feat)
    Fiend Folio (Kaorti, Fiend of Possession)
    SRD
    PHB 2 (Beguiler)
    Planar Handbook (Ardent Dilettante)
    Tome of Battle (Maneuvers and stances)
    Last edited by true_shinken; 2011-01-16 at 08:01 PM.

  30. - Top - End - #150
    Banned
     
    true_shinken's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XVII

    I can't help but picture him as this guy. I should be ashamed of myself.
    Quote Originally Posted by Snow
    Snow

    Story
    While I wrote the character's personality and early life events, I didn't have time to write a full background story.
    However, after describing it to a friend they wrote a really great story that captures the idea perfectly, so I wanted to include it anyway to give you a feel for the character as a whole.
    Spoiler
    Show

    He doesn't entirely remember his first name, the one that his parents gave him when he was born. It probably, fittingly enough, began with an A. He's had as many names as some of the thrillseekers he meets claim to have had lovers. They say you always remember the first. But he doesn't. It was a long time ago.

    The local drow took him when he was still growing - no longer a child, but by no means an adult, either. Perhaps seventy. His captors did not care to give him a name, but the drow children who sometimes came and tormented him with sticks and food held just out of reach were immoderately amused by his strange colouring, and christened him Snow. (Where in the world had they found snow, down in the dark? He wondered about that, sometimes. And did they see in a different fashion, or had his skin paled further still?) He still answers, reflexively, to that name, though there are precious few he has ever told about it.

    In the end, they told him, they would offer him up on the altar to their hungry goddess, but it was some time before the next ceremony, and in the interval they would amuse themselves otherwise.

    For hearing: the time when he was in a great deal of pain, and became aware that the high, thin, animal keening that had accompanied the pain constantly from its beginning was in fact his own voice. He had not known that a mere humanoid larynx could produce a sound so raw, or so strangely pure, or maintain that tone for so long even as his throat first ached, then burned, and then filled with the taste of blood.

    He does not fully remember what happened at the altar, either. He was unconscious for quite a lot of it, feeling only the blessed relief of feeling nothing, and too dazed with pain to properly understand anything for much of the rest. But something happened, and they did not kill him, and after he woke up they treated him in the way one might treat some fragile thing of uncertain purpose but great value, with care that was no less considerate for being bemused. A divine visitation, he gathered later; a manifestation of their goddess in some way, directing that he should live. So for a while after that they addressed him respectfully, and surnamed him Chosen-of-the-Goddess, and taught him some of their secrets. And when as was perhaps inevitable he turned his new powers to the task of escaping the underdark and left many dead behind him, when he emerged into the world he still had no other name; and he kept it, because it seemed to him that there was something savagely elegant in the irony.

    (On his way out of the tunnels, twisting and turning, he briefly stumbled across the bottom of a shaft that led all the way up to the light, with a disc of pale winter sky shining at the top of it. At the bottom of the shaft a mound of snow, knee-high, had piled up and stayed unmelted in the dark. And in the dim light it was indeed grey.)

    He travelled very far. He learnt. He sought out strange things, new things, hoping that if he could not shake off his memories of the dark he could at least deluge them in new ones; maybe one day they would be so far buried he could, indeed, forget. He fell in with the Society of Sensation, and latched on eagerly to the idea that there was (perversely) a home somewhere for those others who roamed the worlds looking for the new, never content to experience a thing but compelled to remember it, tabulate, retell, compare. The first thing he ever told to the Society was about catching sight of the pale glimmer of the snow, and stepping out into the first sunlight he had seen in years. They were intrigued.

    He adventured for a while with this band of mercenaries or that; in those years he flirted with names from the countries he passed through, being briefly Joscelin and even more briefly Talan. He fought a war here and a war there, and defeated this tyrant and that dragon, and once brought down a god - a minor god, sustained only by the small but rabid cult he had led as prophet before his ascension, but a god nonetheless. There had been six of them on that quest, and only two survived.

    For smell: the evening when he and his last remaining companion, who knew him as Kalerav, stood in the ruined sanctuary of a dead god and burned their companions' bodies on the desecrated altar. The smell of smoke, of charring flesh spiked with a counterpoint of burning hair, and of red-hot metal as the armour they had died in glowed. The smell of blood, and rot, and ichor, that pervaded the temple and that even the fire did not wholly cleanse. (Still, still, sometimes, he thinks he catches the unclean reek clinging to his clothes and skin.) His last remaining companion from that band parted from him in the next town, and he never saw her again.

    He studied with notable magicians on a dozen planes: at the grand universities, the academies with their white pillars and vaulted roofs, where he pretended to nobility he did not have and called himself Cesaire; in smoky rooms piled high with parchments; in narrow hermitages tucked away in the folds of cliffs; in high towers where sleepless acolytes tracked the stars; and, more than once, in bare stone dungeons whose walls crawled with chalked symbols that made the eyes water and the brain itch, and whose occupants were guarded day and night. He gathered knowledge. He found newness in ancient things: in crumbling books, in rotten scrolls, in antique jewellery and fragile bones.

    He learned how to lie, to others and himself; and gradually, drifting a little further with every journey, his sense of what was genuinely true and what was not unravelled. Odd moments in time were solid, pinned down by memories especially vivid and unusually pure; but the rest fragmented.

    He called himself Haesten in Pandemonium, and spun a long tale for the court of a minor demon lord about how there was fiendish blood in him, generations back, and was never entirely sure afterwards whether this was true or false. He told a young dragon scholar (cloistered and bookish, which perhaps accounted for its unusually trusting nature) that his name was Thamyris, and that he had been working undercover with the forces of evil for decades and needed access to its research to better understand his enemy; and he was believed. Of that he could not quite convince himself, though he tried; but somewhere at the back of his mind was always the knowledge that Lolth had put her mark on him, and with it a destiny he could neither erase nor escape.

    Armed with the fruits of the young dragon's patient research into the nature of the Infinite Abyss, he went to Sigil, the city that borders on everywhere, and took a gate through to that layered and spiralling plane; and the first layer he reached was unmapped, and very bleak, bare stone here and there riven with pits that seemed to be bottomless, or if they ended to end on some plane stranger still.

    For sight: a deep well of nothingness that manifested to his eyes as utterly black and at the same time a sort of brightly shifting mottled grey, as if vast, silent things drifted to and fro in the void far beneath. At the very bottom was a light, of what colour he could not say, except that it was a colour that seemed not merely to present itself to his eyes but to reach through them and paint itself in agonising swathes across his soul.

    He travelled the Abyss for some years, partly out of a kind of reviled fascination with the things he found, and partly because there are some planes that are not easily left.

    Eventually he found his way to the sixty-sixth layer, that is called by some the Demonweb Pit, and there saw distantly through the curling fog the crawling iron fortress of the goddess Lolth. He spoke with some of the high priestesses who attended the goddess, and asked why, why in the world She had spared his life on her altar so many years before; and they had no answer for him. The goddess Herself did not speak. It did not dawn on him until years later that he should have asked whether She had a true name for him, and by then it was too late.

    And so with that last hope of an answer gone, he returned to wandering, and it perhaps says something about his life that the few hours for which he was in the presence of his patron Goddess faded swiftly in his mind. Too much new had entered it, too soon, though still (still!) the deepest, oldest stratum refused to shift. He still woke screaming, now and then; still thought he felt the scars on his arms and back, long since healed away.

    He returned to Sigil, and amused himself there by collecting and cataloguing the myriad eccentricities only possible in a realm magical to its very bones.

    For taste: the moment when in a small walled garden in an outlying suburb of the City of Doors he had, with the owner's amused permission, plucked a fist-sized jewel-like fruit from a gnarled tree, and bitten into it, and it tasted of ice-cold water drunk straight from glacial streams, and honey, and a little of incense and perhaps a little of blood, and he had imagined that if one could condense ecstasy into a taste it would taste like that. It had sapped his strength, and left him a shaking-handed invalid for some weeks; and the owner of the garden later told him that if he had actually eaten the fruit, rather than being so lost in sensation he forgot to do so anything so vulgar as swallow, that would have been the end.

    Sigil dominated his life after that; it seemed for some decades that there would always be something new there. A new fashion; a new trick of magic that spent arcane power like water but was very beautiful; a gate opened to a previously unvisited plane of Hell; and always there were new people - travellers, traders, adventurers, the wandering and the lost - with whom to exchange reminiscences. He called himself Mandori one year, and Estrehan another; Ysilaj in a third; and most of the names he used did not last even that long.

    One day in the summer of what was possibly his hundred and seventieth year, certainly close to a century since he lost his name, he was in Sigil for what was perhaps the sixtieth or seventieth time, and explored its alleys and byways in the old way, and found some things that were indeed wonderful and new; but the feeling itself, the delight of finding something new - that was no longer new, and the sensations on which he stumbled pleased him less. When newness itself was insufficiently novel, what was left?

    And so he took a portal out to the great Spire that Sigil orbits, and climbed it to the very point, and looked down. Clouds wandered around the shoulders of the mountain far below, the rivers and plateaux of the Outlands lost in haze. He had seen many of them, if not most, though not all.

    For touch: the moment when, with the constant cyclone generated by Sigil's spin whipping his hair backwards from his face, eyes watering and skin numb, he stepped calmly forward into the wind, as though the insubstantial air would take his weight; and it did not.


    General Info
    Spoiler
    Show

    Snow, NE Male Gray Elf Favoured Soul 1/Wizard 4/Loremaster 5/Ardent Dilettante 10
    Worshipper & Favoured Soul of Lolth
    Stats:
    Str 8 -> 6
    Dex 16 -> 18
    Con 14 -> 12
    Int 16 -> 18 (+1 every 4 levels, reaching 23 at Level 20)
    Wis 10
    Cha 12


    Level Progression
    Spoiler
    Show

    Snow
    {table=head]Level|Class|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Skills|Feats|Class Features

    1st|Favoured Soul 1|
    +0
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |Concentration 4, Jump 4, Knowledge (Arcana) 4, Sense Motive 4, Spellcraft 4|Empower Spell|Proficiency with deity's favoured weapon (Lolth - whip)

    2nd|Elf Wizard Racial Substitution 1|
    +0
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +4
    |Concentration 5, Knowledge (Arcana) 5, Knowledge (The Planes) 1, Search 1, Spellcraft 5||Generalist wizardry, Scribe Scroll, summon familiar (Rat)

    3rd|Wizard 2|
    +1
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +5
    |Concentration 6, Decipher Script 1, Knowledge (Arcana) 6, Knowledge (The Planes) 2, Spellcraft 6|Practiced Spellcaster (Wizard)|

    4th|Elf Wizard Racial Substitution 3|
    +1
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +5
    |Concentration 7, Knowledge (Arcana) 7, Knowledge (The Planes) 3, Search 2, Spellcraft 7||Natural Link

    5th|Wizard 4|
    +2
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +6
    |Concentration 8, Decipher Script 2, Knowledge (Arcana) 8, Knowledge (The Planes) 4, Spellcraft 8||

    6th|Ardent Dilettante 1|
    +2
    |
    +3
    |
    +5
    |
    +6
    |Concentration 9, Knowledge (Arcana) 9, Knowledge (The Planes) 6, Perform (Oratory) 4, Spellcraft 9|Sudden Maximise|Heightened Senses, Lore

    7th|Ardent Dilettante 2|
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |Concentration 10, Knowledge (Arcana) 10, Knowledge (The Planes) 8, Perform (Oratory) 8, Spellcraft 10||Enthrall

    8th|Ardent Dilettante 3|
    +3
    |
    +4
    |
    +6
    |
    +7
    |Concentration 11, Decipher Script 4, Jump 5, Knowledge (The Planes) 10, Listen 1, Spellcraft 11, Spot 1, Tumble 1||Joie de vivre

    9th|Ardent Dilettante 4|
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +7
    |
    +7
    |Concentration 12, Listen 3, Search 5, Spellcraft 12, Spot 3, Tumble 2|Energy Substitution [Lightning], Skill Focus (Knowledge[The Planes])*|Sense link, Bonus feat

    10th|Loremaster 1|
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +7
    |
    +9
    |Bluff 2, Concentration 13, Decipher Script 6, Spellcraft 13||Secret (+2 Will Save)

    11th|Loremaster 2|
    +5
    |
    +4
    |
    +7
    |
    +10
    |Bluff 4, Concentration 14, Decipher Script 8, Spellcraft 14||Lore (stacks with AD Lore)

    12th|Loremaster 3|
    +5
    |
    +5
    |
    +8
    |
    +10
    |Bluff 6, Concentration 15, Decipher Script 10, Spellcraft 15|Split Ray, Maximise Spell*|Secret (Bonus feat)

    13th|Loremaster 4|
    +6
    |
    +5
    |
    +8
    |
    +11
    |Bluff 8, Concentration 16, Decipher Script 12, Spellcraft 16||Bonus Language

    14th|Loremaster 5|
    +6
    |
    +5
    |
    +8
    |
    +11
    |Concentration 17, Decipher Script 16, Spellcraft 17||Secret (+1 dodge bonus to AC)

    15th|Ardent Dilettante 5|
    +6
    |
    +5
    |
    +8
    |
    +11
    |Bluff 10, Concentration 18, Listen 5, Spellcraft 18, Spot 5, Tumble 4|Quicken Spell|Scent

    16th|Ardent Dilettante 6|
    +7
    |
    +6
    |
    +9
    |
    +12
    |Bluff 12, Concentration 19, Listen 6, Search 8, Spellcraft 19, Spot 6, Tumble 8||Seen it before

    17th|Ardent Dilettante 7|
    +7
    |
    +6
    |
    +9
    |
    +12
    |Bluff 14, Concentration 20, Listen 7, Search 10, Spellcraft 20, Spot 7, Tumble 13|Residual Magic*|Bonus feat

    18th|Ardent Dilettante 8|
    +8
    |
    +6
    |
    +10
    |
    +12
    |Bluff 16, Concentration 21, Listen 8, Search 12, Spellcraft 21, Spot 8, Tumble 16|Spell Focus (Evil)|See it again

    19th|Ardent Dilettante 9|
    +8
    |
    +7
    |
    +10
    |
    +13
    |Bluff 18, Concentration 22, Listen 10, Search 14, Spellcraft 22, Spot 10, Tumble 19||Blindsense 10ft

    20th|Ardent Dilettante 10|
    +9
    |
    +7
    |
    +11
    |
    +13
    |Bluff 20, Concentration 23, Listen 12, Search 16, Spellcraft 23, Spot 12, Tumble 22|Corrupt Spell*|Bonus feat, Death holds no mysteries[/table]
    * indicates a bonus feat


    Spells
    Spoiler
    Show

    Arcane Spells per day, including Bonus Spells
    {table=head]Level|0lvl|1st|2nd|3rd|4th|5th|6th|7th|8th|9th

    1st|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    2nd|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    3rd|4|3|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    4th|4|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    5th|4|4|3|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    6th|4|4|3|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    7th|4|4|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-

    8th|4|5|4|3|-|-|-|-|-|-

    9th|4|6|4|3|2|-|-|-|-|-

    10th|4|6|4|4|3|-|-|-|-|-

    11th|4|6|5|4|3|2|-|-|-|-

    12th|4|6|5|4|4|3|-|-|-|-

    13th|4|6|5|5|4|3|1|-|-|-

    14th|4|6|5|5|4|4|2|-|-|-

    15th|4|6|5|5|5|4|2|1|-|-

    16th|4|6|6|5|5|4|4|2|-|-

    17th|4|6|6|5|5|5|4|2|1|-

    18th|4|6|6|5|5|5|4|3|2|-

    19th|4|6|6|5|5|5|5|3|2|1

    20th|4|6|6|5|5|5|5|3|3|2[/table]

    Divine Spells, including Bonus spells
    At all levels, spells per day are 5 of 0th level and 4 of 1st level. Spells known are:
    0 - Create Water, Cure Minor Wounds, Guidance & Read Magic
    1 - Bless, Cure Light Wounds, Comprehend Languages


    Level Showcase
    Spoiler
    Show

    Level 5
    Spoiler
    Show

    At Favoured Soul 1/Wizard 4, Snow is ready to enter Ardent Dilettante. 8 ranks in Concentration, Knowledge-(Arcana) and Spellcraft, and lower ranks in 8 other skills qualifies him easily, and his traumatic past gives plenty of opportunity for experiences to tell to the Society of Sensation.
    Generalist wizardry gives him an extra 2nd level spell for his 4 arcane casting levels, and 1 level of divine spellcasting provides some useful backup healing at these low levels. Practised Spellcaster (Wizard) brings his CL up to 5 and will offset the next level's lack of casting, and next level also brings Sudden Maxmise for an awesome if limited damage potential.


    Level 9
    Spoiler
    Show

    Snow has just entered the 4th level of Ardent Dilettante, having 8 ranks in Perform-(Oratory) from telling tales of his experiences, martial weapon proficiencies from being an Elf, and both arcane and divine casting. He now also has the prerequisites for taking Loremaster levels, with 10 ranks in both Knowledge-(Arcana) and -(The Planes), access to 3rd level Divination spells, 3 metamagic feats and Skill Focus in a Knowledge skill.
    Still a powerful spellcaster for his level, Snow now has access to Energy Substitution (Lightning), giving him even more flexibility.


    Level 16
    Spoiler
    Show

    The prerequisites for the next level of Ardent Dilettante (7th) are tough, but easily accomplished from the combination of Elven martial weapon proficiencies, Favoured Soul providing divine spellcasting and an exotic weapon proficiency (Lolth's favoured weapon is the whip), Wizard for arcane casting, and Ardent Dilettante itself providing lots of skillpoints (6 per level) and all skills as class skills. By now, Snow has certainly visited at least 3 planes, if not more.
    Many skillpoints, near-full casting and plenty of bonuses for scouting makes Snow a very versatile character, and some powerful metamagic/spell combinations provides a powerful arsenal of spells, with more to come using Residual Magic next level.


    Level 19
    Spoiler
    Show

    About to take the final level in Ardent Dilettante, Snow has been everywhere and seen everything. Even death has been experienced, and in one of the most dramatic ways possible.
    Residual Magic has kicked in now, and more levels of arcane spellcasting bring him 9th level spells at this point. The most powerful Ardent Dilettante ability is also in his repertoire, See it again, giving him the ability to reproduce any spells cast on him. All that is missing is the final bonus feat from level 10 of Ardent Dilettante, providing a nice pair of feats that work well together - Spell Focus [Evil] raises the DC of Evil type spells by 1, and Corrupt Spell sets a spell type to Evil and untypes half of the energy damage, for a +1 spell level modifier.


    Level 20 Build - No Equipment
    Spoiler
    Show

    Medium Humanoid (Elven)
    HD: 8 +9d4 +10d8 +20 (95HP)
    Initiative: +4
    Speed: 30ft
    AC: 15 (10, +4 DEX, +1 dodge)
    Bab/Grapple: +9/+7
    Attack: Ray +13
    Space/Reach: 5ft/5ft
    Special Qualities: Low-light Vision, Immune to sleep effects, Proficiency with longswords, rapiers, longbows, shortbows and whips; Generalist wizardry, Scribe Scroll, summon familiar (Rat), Natural Link, Lore, Enthrall, Joie de vivre, Sense link, Scent, Seen it before, See it again, Blindsense 10ft, Death holds no mysteries
    Saves: Fort +12, Ref +15, Will +15 (+2 vs Enchantment)
    Abilities: Str 6, Dex 18, Con 12, Int 21, Wis 10, Cha 12
    Skills: Bluff +21, Concentration +24, Decipher Script +21, Jump +5, Knowledge (Arcana) +15, Knowledge (The Planes) +18, Listen +19, Perform (Oratory) +9, Search +28, Sense Motive +10, Spellcraft +30, Spot +19, Tumble +28
    Feats: Empower Spell, Practiced Spellcaster (Wizard), Sudden Maximise, Energy Substitution [Lightning], Skill Focus (Knowledge[The Planes]), Split Ray, Maximise Spell, Quicken Spell, Residual Magic, Spell Focus (Evil), Corrupt Spell



    Build Notes and Tactics
    Spoiler
    Show

    I decided to try and strike a balance between Power and Originality, avoiding what seemed like the obvious route through Bard/Divine Bard. Using the Elven weapon proficiencies and the proficiency in your god's favoured weapon from Favoured Soul let me gain most of the Ardent Dilettante requirements in one level and my race, and Gray Elves are always good for a Wizard. Using only one level to gain everything else allowed me to focus on Wizard levels, and I still gained level 9 spells at level 19, with a CL of 20. I thought about boosting the CL some more, but felt Snow's classes flowed together quite well, and didn't want to ruin the flavour and Elegance by adding another dip in something that didn't fit.

    I tried to keep the Ardent Dilettante's class features central to the build, making good use of both the spellcasting and the skills range to make a flexible yet powerful caster, capable of filling both a primary caster and scout/skills role. Heightened Senses combined with decent skill ranks and elf bonuses makes Snow a decent scout, and abilities like Scent, Blindsense and Seen It Before allow him to overcome many of the biggest challenges for scouting roles, and his spellcasting can fill in any gaps (a wand of Find Traps and preparations of Knock should do this well).

    A strong selection of metamagic feats and spells should make Snow a formidable opponent, and high ranks in Tumble should keep him from being cornered and unable to cast. Spell Focus [Evil] and Corrupt Spell work particularly well together, enabling me to raise the DC on any spell for +1 spell level, as well as changing half of any energy damage to divine power (untyped) to bypass energy resistance. Add the ability to reproduce spells targeted at him (See It Again), and he will able to conserve spells as well as using powerful spells thrown at him that he does not know, increasing his versatility and the standard of his ability to fill in any role a party needs.


    Equipment Suggestions
    Spoiler
    Show

    +6 stat-boosting equipment is fairly essential - Int for spellcasting, Dex and Con for survivability, and Cha to use the Ardent Dilettante's abilities. The Robe of the Archmagi is fairly useless by this point, for slightly more you can get Bracers of Armour +8 and a Vest of Resistance +5, and SR18 is not worth it. Get a Ring of Protection +5 and the best Ring of Wizardry you can afford, and as many Manuals and Pearls of Power as you can lay your hands on. Also consider a mithral buckler, +5 and some kind of Fortification on it (moderate at least), no ASF and no check penalty means you can wield it untrained with no down side. Metamagic rods will be very useful, and wands or scrolls of useful spells would also be great, especially as you have both Wizard and Cleric spell lists to cast from - for example, a wand of Detect Traps (Cleric 2) turns you into an excellent party scout. Top it off with some handy Ioun stones and some flavourful items, all in a Bag of Holding or two, and you're set to go!


    Sources
    Spoiler
    Show

    Complete Arcane - Practiced Spellcaster, Sudden Maximise, Energy Substitution, Split Ray
    Complete Divine - Favoured Soul, Lolth's favoured weapon, Spell Focus (Evil), Corrupt Spell
    Complete Mage - Residual Magic
    Races of the Wild - Elf Wizard racial substitution levels
    Planar Handbook - Ardent Dilettante (obviously)
    SRD - everything else

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •