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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Orc in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default DSP rundown: Introducing.... the Marksman

    The Marksman is a new base class originally found in Dreamsccarred Press' Untapped Potential. As it's name implies, it is a class for ranged attacker, much like the psywar is a psionic version of the fighter and the ardent is the psionic version of the cleric, the Marksman is the psionic version of the ranger. Well the non-TWF ranger at least. So how does this distance fighter stack up against it's divine counterpart? Well, let's see.


    The Marksman


    Flavor: many of the marksman's class features focus around psionic focus. Either gaining it, maintaining it, or expending it. This is to emphasis the act of lining up a shot much like what snipers do. Gain focus, steady your aim, loosen your shot and follow through. This is no hunter, but a marksman through and through. He focuses on the act of the shot, not the prey. The mental focus poured into the point of the arrow, while disrupting the concentration of those attempting to aim at them.

    Base chassis: full BAB, good reflex and will saves, 4 skill points/level, d6 hit dice.
    Skill collection lacks autohypnosis for some reason, which is odd considering this classes flavor. But the basics like spot, listen, jump, and balance are all there. Use psionic device is certainly welcome as well.
    Weapon/armor proficienies: simple weapons, and all ranged weapons. Light armor only and only bucklers.

    Class features:
    Powers and power points: Marksmen use a restrictive list that is similar to the psywar's, however, they only reach up to level 5 powers. In terms of power points, it also lags behind the psywar, topping out at 100 but gains bonus PP for high WIS. In 20 levels, it gains 15 powers, the same as a wilder (with educated ACF), 3 powers per power level.

    Feats: marksmen gain point blank shot shot at level 1 and psionic meditation at level 5. They also gain a bonus feat at 8, 14 and 20. These bonus feats need to archery related and have point blank shot as a requirement.

    Wind reader: Once you gain psionic focus, you can add a competence bonus to ranged attack rolls equal to your WIS mod for one minute. Unlike, zen archery, this is in addition to the DEX bonus rather than replaces it. In fact, if the marksman had zen archery, wind reader would give no benefits.

    Evade arrow: gain a dodge bonus equal to WIS modifier against ranged attacks. Alas, this doesn't apply to rays, only mundane ranged attacks.

    Cover fire: hit the space a target is occupying to distract it. It is forced to make a concentration check (DC= 10+ 1/2 class level + DEX mod). If they fail, they are staggered.

    Signature style: This is where the meat of this class comes through. Starting at level 7, the Marksman picks one ranged weapon (crossbow, bow or thrown weapon) and gains additional abilities with it. At 11, 15 and 19 the marksman can either select to gain more advanced abilities with your previously selected weapon or start another weapon and gain some versatility. Each first rank ability requires you expend your focus to make use of it.

    Crossbow:
    rank 1 Augmented Shot (Su): expend your focus to add 1d8 to your damage, this is real added damage that applies to crit damages. With each rank you add another 1d8.
    rank 2 Unstoppable Force (Ex): if your attacks do enough damage to drop its original target, it will go through that target to hit another. The next attack will have a -4 on its attack roll, and the 3rd attack will have a -8 and so on. This continues until the attack misses, the bolt hits an object or reaches its max distance.
    rank 3 Call the Shot (Ex): use one round observing a target. After that if the marksman hits his mark, it automatically threatens a crit.
    rank 4 One Shot, One Kill (Ex) : basically a ranged assassin's strike, observe a mark for 3 rounds and hit your target they have to make a Fort save or die.

    Bow:
    rank 1 Force-charged Fletching (Su): use your focus and spend 1 PP to attempt a free trip attempt. This converts your attack to non-lethal bludgeoning damage.
    rank 2 Lightning Draw (Ex): gain an additional arrow when using manyshot or an additional attack when using rapid shot. This ability requires the marksman to maintain focus.
    rank 3 Burst Arrows (Su): expend focus to allow for a AoE damage by targeting the space a target occupies.
    rank 4 Rain of Arrows (Su): For one round, all your attacks deal double damage.

    Thrown weapon: specifically the dagger, club, shortspear, spear, dart, javelin, throwing axe, light hammer, trident, sai, bolas, shuriken, mind blade and sling. However, if you have the feat throw anything it should apply for that weapon as well.
    rank 1 Ricochet (Su): if you miss your target you can bend the thrown weapon by up to 90 degrees to attack another target at a -2 penalty to hit. If you have another rank in thrown weapon you can adjust this by up to 180 degrees. Like all other rank one abilities, this requires you to expend focus.
    rank 2 Push by Proxy (Ex): You push your target by 5 feet on a hit if the target fails an opposed STR check. If the marksman is focused, he can use his WIS to make the opposed ability check instead. This negates all damage on the attack.
    rank 3 Psychoportative Momentum Mastery (Su): while focused, all weapons the marksman throws has the teleporting special ability.
    rank 4 Psychokinetic Momentum Mastery (Ex): when using push by proxy you can push the target more than 5 feet.

    Powers: Some great powers here.
    level 1: bolt (free magic bolts), dissolving weapon (4d8 extra damage for only 1 PP), vigor, foxhole (create a ditch to gain cover)
    level 2: body adjustment, wall walker, steal item (things just apprear in your possession).
    level 3: hustle, arrow knows the way (ignore AC bonus due to partial concealment and range penalties),
    level 4: psychic reformation (!!!), mirror shot (double the amount of projetiles in mid air), physical acceleration (psionic haste), zealous fury (+5 to your attack up to your max BAB, good for full attacks), true venom weapon.
    level 5: barrage (make one attack against all targets in range, basically like the soulknives' bladewind feature), true seeing.



    Final verdict: a fine class with solid features and powers to compliment ranged combat. It is dependent on DEX and WIS to make the most of his features much like the ranger. Wind reader makes gaining focus a good thing and many signature styles make good use of expending focus. One complaint I do have with the marksman is that it's features, especially signature style, comes about so late at level 7. This makes multiclassing unattractive. All marksmen may have to be differentiated by which weapon they pick. Indeed, there are not many PrCs that require or advance a marksman's styles. Of the 3, the crossbow seems the best for pure damage, but its 4th rank is underwhelming. Bow and thrown weapon allow for ranged trip and push. Thrown weapon can provides some decent battlefield control. Combined with feats like ranged pin, sunder, and disarm they isn't anything the marksman can't do at range.

    Wow that took a while. Let me know if I missed something, especially in terms of PrCs and feats.
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  2. - Top - End - #2
    Troll in the Playground
     
    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: DSP rundown: Introducing.... the Marksman

    Quote Originally Posted by classy one View Post
    Wind reader: Once you gain psionic focus, you can add a competence bonus to ranged attack rolls equal to your WIS mod for one minute. Unlike, zen archery, this is in addition to the DEX bonus rather than replaces it. In fact, if the marksman had zen archery, wind reader would give no benefits.
    Actually, it grants a Competence bonus equal to your WIS mod, so you would get Double WIS To-Hit.
    Sadly, you can only use it for 3+Marksman level rounds/day, AND you need to use your Swift Action EVERY round to do so.
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  3. - Top - End - #3
    Orc in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: DSP rundown: Introducing.... the Marksman

    Quote Originally Posted by grarrrg View Post
    Actually, it grants a Competence bonus equal to your WIS mod, so you would get Double WIS To-Hit.
    Sadly, you can only use it for 3+Marksman level rounds/day, AND you need to use your Swift Action EVERY round to do so.
    Here's the exact wording for wind reader:
    Wind Reader (Su): A marksman’s intuition enables her to read the actions those around her may take, as well as the flow of the wind in her line of sight. This intuition is similar to a mantra, enhancing her combat ability while honing her thoughts. When the marksman gains psionic focus, she adds her Wisdom bonus as a competence bonus on ranged attack rolls for a number of rounds equal to her class level as long as she maintains psionic focus, starting on her next action. If a marksman already gains her Wisdom modifier to attack rolls, she gains no additional benefit from this ability. This class ability counts as a Mantra feat (see Chapter 3: Feats).
    Hooded section seems to state that zen archery would not apply.
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  4. - Top - End - #4
    Troll in the Playground
     
    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: DSP rundown: Introducing.... the Marksman

    Quote Originally Posted by classy one View Post
    Here's the exact wording for wind reader:

    Hooded section seems to state that zen archery would not apply.
    Ah.
    Nevermind then.
    Carry on.
    [currently semi-retired from the forums

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  5. - Top - End - #5
    Titan in the Playground
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    Default Re: DSP rundown: Introducing.... the Marksman

    Huh, this doesn't seem to match the PFSRD version. What's up with that?
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    That's RAW for you; 100% Rules-Legal, 110% silly.
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  6. - Top - End - #6
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    JadePhoenix's Avatar

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    Default Re: DSP rundown: Introducing.... the Marksman

    I think he's talking about the 3.5 version

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Orc in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: DSP rundown: Introducing.... the Marksman

    Quote Originally Posted by tuggyne View Post
    Huh, this doesn't seem to match the PFSRD version. What's up with that?
    Because it is the untapped potential one.
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  8. - Top - End - #8
    Orc in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: DSP rundown: Introducing.... the Marksman

    Quote Originally Posted by TuggyNE View Post
    Huh, this doesn't seem to match the PFSRD version. What's up with that?
    Ok I know this is thread nercomancy but its my thread and I was hoping to get back into my DSP review.
    I can oblige PF fans with quick and dirty comparision so you can decide which you like better, but I will definitively state I think is stronger.

    PF marksman: Basic chassis is the same. Good will and reflex saves, full bab, +4 skills.

    Class features:

    Combat style is analogous to signature style but it is not restricted to a certain weapon and slightly different. But for the most part volley is similar in goal to bow, finesse is similar to thrown and sniper is similar to crossbow. The combat styles also add some more nick knacks like +3 on a certain skill, different buffs when you are focused etc. Another key difference is that you select your combat style at level 1 rather than level 7. The PF marksman clearly beats out the 3.5 variant here.

    Feats: PF gets 6 bonus feats compared to 3.5's 3 (4 if you count the psionic meditation). Again PF marksman wins.

    Cover fire and wind reader: same as 3.5 version.

    Disengage: expend focus to gain a bonus to tumble. Its okay but the psionic mediation that the 3.5 marksman gets at the same level is better.

    Defensive shot: you don't provoke AoO when making ranged attacks. Very good thing to have as a ranged specialist.

    Powers and manifesting: 3.5 marksman get 100 PP while PF marksman gets 70 PP. But PF marksmen can manifest lvl 0 powers for free. The 3.5 marksman also gets to learn 5th level powers as opposed to PF marksman who only get to learn 4th level powers. For the most part the power selection from levels 1-4 are pretty even. PF cheats a little by having identical powers cost less on their list than the 3.5 version. PF barrage is a 4th lvl power but 3.5 barrage is a 5th lvl power. PF does miss out on some important powers like freedom of movement, cloud mind and other powers from HC. The most damning neglected power is psychic reformation, another hit against the PF marksman.


    Final verdict:
    I think the 3.5 version is more to my liking as it has more PP and gets higher level powers. In terms of effectivness the 3.5 marksman's superior pool of PP and better selection of powers can make up for most of its shortcomings (and psychic reformation an do surpass it). The higher power ceiling also means it can get 4th level powers with expanded knowledge; something like metamorphosis. On the other hand, the PF version is clearly made to be more martially focused and longer lasting. If a DM throws out many encounters before a marksman can recover PP then the PF one will come out on top. IMHO 3.5 edges PF marksmen by a wide margin due to their lack of psychic reformation.
    Last edited by classy one; 2014-01-12 at 01:23 AM.
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