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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Abjurant Champion Remake (ToB) [PrC] - less cheese, same fun.

    This... Is a rework, primarily intended as a strict nerf.
    Well. It uses Tome Of Battle. I love me some ToB. It's more like an addiction, actually.
    Oh well. I'll probably post the non-ToB version. Sometime later. Maybe. I think. I wish I'd actually do that. Yep. I really do.

    Ladies, Gentlemen and Warblades... I present you:

    Abjurant Champion

    {table=head]Level|BAB|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special|Spells

    1st|
    +1
    |
    +2
    |
    +0
    |
    +2
    |Martial Arcanist, Abjurant Armor Stance| -

    2nd|
    +2
    |
    +3
    |
    +0
    |
    +3
    |Swift Abjuring|+1 level of existing spellcasting class

    3rd|
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +1
    |
    +3
    |Arcane Defense|+1 level of existing spellcasting class

    4th|
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    |Mettle|+1 level of existing spellcasting class

    5th|
    +5
    |
    +4
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    |Masterful Abjurations|+1 level of existing spellcasting class[/table]

    Maneuvers
    {table=head]Known|Readied|Stances

    1
    |
    0
    |
    0
    |

    0
    |
    1
    |
    0
    |

    1
    |
    0
    |
    1
    |

    0
    |
    1
    |
    0
    |

    1
    |
    0
    |
    0
    [/table]

    HD: d10
    Skill Points: 2+Int mod

    Class Skills:
    Climb(Str), Concentration(Con), Craft(Int), Handle Animal(Cha), Intimidate(Cha), Jump(Str), Knowledge (arcana)(Int), Ride(Dex), Spellcraft(Int), Swim(Str), Martial Lore (Int)


    Requirements:
    Skills: Knowledge (Arcana) 8, Martial Lore 6
    Maneuvers: Must know and be able to initiate and refresh Iron Heart Surge.
    Spellcasting: Must be able to cast 1st-level arcane spells, including at least one Abjuration spell.
    Feats: Spell Focus (Abjuration)
    Special:Caster level cannot be higher than Initiator Level.

    Class Features:

    Spellcasting: At each level except first, you gain new spells per day and an increase in caster level (and spells known, if applicable) as if you had also gained a level in an arcane spellcasting class to which you belonged before adding the prestige class level. You do not, however, gain any other benefit a character of that class would have gained. If you had more than one arcane spellcasting class before becoming an Abjurant Champion, you must decide to which class to add each level for the purpose of determining spells per day, caster level, and spells known.

    Maneuvers: You may pick maneuvers from the Iron Heart discipline and one discipline to which you had access before taking levels in this class.
    At 1st, 3rd and 5th level you gain a new maneuver known. At 2nd and 4th level you gain a new maneuver readied.
    You add your full class level to your initiator level.

    Stances: At 3rd level you gain a new stance, which must be chosen from the disciplines available to you.

    Martial Arcanist: Unless it would otherwise be higher, your caster level equals your initiator level. However it is restricted to your original caster level + your Abjurant Champion class level until level 5th, when this restriction is lifted.

    Abjurant Armor Stance: At first level you learn a potent defensive stance. While in it, you gain the following benefits:
    If you or your allies no further than 20ft from you are under effects of an Abjuration spell that gives shield or armor bonus to AC and that you cast yourself, you increase the spell's bonus based on your spellcraft ranks, up to the maximum of your level in this class:

    0-4: +1
    5-8: +2
    9-12: +3
    13-16: +4
    17+: +5

    Furthermore, while in this stance, if you are under the effects of a Shield spell you cast on yourself, you gain the benefits of Evasion (as rogue, but without armor restrictions) and add the stance's AC bonus to your reflex saves.
    If you have 15 or more ranks in Spellcraft skill, this changes to Improved Evasion.

    This stance is an extraordinary ability, however every effect (such as an Antimagic Field or the spell being dispelled) that rids you (or your allies) of the spell's bonus to AC rids you of this stance's benefits as well.

    Spoiler
    Show
    Nerf. You get Evasion, but your AC Bonus is now more spread throughout the levels. No dipping, because it's capped out on your Abjurant Champion level too.


    Swift Abjuring: If you use your standard action for something other than casting a spell, you can cast an abjuration spell as a swift action, as if you had applied the Quicken Spell feat to it (but without any change in level).
    The maximum level of spell you can quicken in this way is equal to 1/2 your class level (rounded up).
    If your standard action was a martial strike that succesfully hit, you add +1 to your caster level of the Abjuration spell you cast this way.

    Spoiler
    Show
    A power shift from overspamming spells to being able to attack and protect yourself in the same round. Better fits the flavor.


    Arcane Defense (Su): Beginning at 3rd level, you gain the ability to burn arcane energy to empower your martial abilities. As a swift or immediate action, you can spend one of your uncast spells or spell slots to grant yourself one of the following insight bonuses for 1 round.

    • Bonus to AC equal to the spell's level.
    • Bonus on saving throws equal to the spell's level.
    • Resistance to acid, cold, electricity, fire, and sonic equal to 5 the spell's level.


    Mettle (Ex): Beginning at 4th level, you can resist effects that would shake those less hardened than you. If you succeed on a Fortitude or Will save against an attack that would normally produce a lesser effect on a successful save (such as a spell with a saving throw entry of Will half or Fortitude partial), you instead negate the effect. You do not gain the benefit of mettle when you are unconscious or sleeping.

    Masterful Abjurations (Ex): At fifth level you start to fully depend on your abjuration spells to protect you and your allies in battle. Whenever you cast an abjuration spell, it is treated as if you had applied the Extend Spell feat to them (but without any change in level or casting time).
    Additionally, whenever casting Abjuration spells of a 3rd level or lower with a duration other than immediate and a range greater than personal, you may divide it between as many recipients as you wish.
    Finally, you may treat the Mage Armor as an abjuration spell for the benefits of this class.
    You add it to your spellbook/list of spells known if you did not have it already.

    Spoiler
    Show
    The capstone. Since i moved the Martial Arcanist down to the first level, I wanted the 5th to be worth it. Here I migrated the auto-Extend and mixed it with the ability to buff your whole team and friends. And family too. It previously didn't have the "range greater than personal" disclaimer, but a whole-party Shield spell would probably be too much. And they can probably have it from other sources anyway.


    Okay. That's all. The capstone is very similar to the one I used in the offensive counterpart, the Arcane Armsmaster, because, which I mentioned in that classes' thread, these two are meant to be two sides of the same coin.
    This Abjurant Champion is now much more defense-focused (namely, self-defense mostly), while retaining some retaliation ability thanks to the Iron Heart maneuvers.

    ...PEACH please? :D
    Last edited by Xerlith; 2013-07-11 at 08:50 AM.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Barbarian in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2012

    Default Re: Abjurant Champion Remake (ToB) [PrC]

    I'm going to look at this from the perspective of a primary caster. By dropping one caster level, I get 5 levels of d10 HD, full BAB, two good saves, and maneuver progression. That's a pretty sweet deal before you even get to the class features. As a pure caster, I could get in at 12th level (admittedly, at the cost of 3 feats). Is this too powerful? Depends on your game, but I don't think it's obviously over the top. Most likely, the "default" caster entry would be Sor/Wiz 10 / Warblade 1 / Abjurant Champion X, dropping an extra caster level but gaining a boatload of maneuver abilities. I would assume that the character would focus on defensive maneuvers, while relying on casting for offense. With that perspective:

    Abjurant Armor Stance: Just as good as the original, plus the ability to almost automatically make Reflex saves. Plus, unlike the Diamond Mind counters, it requires no action. Very strong.

    Strike of Swift Abjuring: Looks like a good ability, but irrelevant to this build.

    Mettle: Okay, so now all of my saves are awesome. Casting spells on this guy is tough.

    Wall of Spells: Oh my Pelor this is an amazing ability. Attack rolls are vastly higher than caster levels, so this will basically always succeed on a martial build. With a caster build, it's not as inevitable, and we don't refresh maneuvers as often, so unfortunately we don't get the best use of this ability.

    Masterful Abjurations: "You may divide it between as many recipients as you wish". Woah. Is this abusable? Yes. The most amazing use of this that comes to mind is mass stoneskin. Mass death ward or freedom would also be extremely good. I'm sure there are even more powerful abuses of this ability, but I really don't like it. Way too good.

    Overall: I like the class, but I think it should be toned down. Between the class features and the easy access to the Diamond Mind save counters, this class is highly unlikely to ever fail a save (and with Mettle, it is practically immune to spells). I would also advise changing the masterful abjurations ability, and I am actually really afraid of the Wall of Spells ability on a martial build. But... I would only make it less powerful by degrees. The core concept is not bad.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: Abjurant Champion Remake (ToB) [PrC]

    I see where you are coming from. I was wondering on leaving the fourth level ability as it was, maybe dropping the 2xspell level to damage and spell level to hit options, since it fits the flavour.

    So, to balance it out slightly, I have this one change that might be enough:

    Add to requirements:
    Special: Caster Level cannot be higher than Initiator Level (Boom. Instant nerf, since you cannot be a full caster or a primary caster anymore. Works with the original fluff and probably the intended crunch).

    If that isn't enough, I have some things worked out already:

    1st level: In the Abjurant Armor stance, changing the Reflex save ability to request burning a spell slot of 1st level or higher as an immediate action to change the Reflex save to Concentration check.
    Or just make it so you add twice the sacrificed spell's level to your Reflex roll.
    OR instead have being under the effects of Shield spell give Evasion.
    I don't want to be stepping on the Diamond Mind Counters' toes... To much.

    2nd: Since it's not too strong, probably a little buff here to go along with the nerfs. Maybe make it "any martial strike" as it is with the JPM's Quickening Strike.

    3rd: Mettle - yep, this ability's strong. But so was the first idea of mine, basically paladin's Divine Grace (non-stacking) but going by your primary casting stat.

    4th level: At first I wanted it to have just the same Arcane Boost sans the two offensive options (Since, you know, you have the ToB stuff to do it already). This is still a viable option.
    But maybe instead I should move the Reflex save stuff from the Abjurant Armor Stance (The original one, with the Concentration check substitution) to this level. Most probably something around these lines.


    5th: How about I make the Masterful Abjurations mass buffing have the same restriction that Quickening has, making it 3rd (Or even 2nd) level tops? This should pretty much make it party-friendly but not party-immortalizing.
    Last edited by Xerlith; 2013-06-30 at 02:31 AM.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Barbarian in the Playground
    Join Date
    Aug 2012

    Default Re: Abjurant Champion Remake (ToB) [PrC]

    Quote Originally Posted by Xerlith View Post
    I see where you are coming from. I was wondering on leaving the fourth level ability as it was, maybe dropping the 2xspell level to damage and spell level to hit options, since it fits the flavour.

    So, to balance it out slightly, I have this one change that might be enough:

    Add to requirements:
    Special: Caster Level cannot be higher than Initiator Level (Boom. Instant nerf, since you cannot be a full caster or a primary caster anymore. Works with the original fluff and probably the intended crunch).
    Interesting. My main issue with this is that it uses a mechanic that nothing else in the game uses. This means that, in addition to just being weird to read, it is not obvious what the actual implications for the build are. After some thinking, I figured out that what this would mean in practice is that a caster build would need to be wizard 6 / warblade 3 to get in. Unless, of course, the caster made the mistake of taking the Practiced Spellcaster feat or had any bonuses to their caster level. The effects are just odd.

    If that isn't enough, I have some things worked out already:

    1st level: In the Abjurant Armor stance, changing the Reflex save ability to request burning a spell slot of 1st level or higher as an immediate action to change the Reflex save to Concentration check.
    Or just make it so you add twice the sacrificed spell's level to your Reflex roll.
    OR instead have being under the effects of Shield spell give Evasion.
    I don't want to be stepping on the Diamond Mind Counters' toes... To much.
    All interesting ideas. I like the way you think. I would avoid the "Concentration check to Reflex save" idea, because that is so strongly identified with the DM counters. In order to choose from the remaining options (or an entirely new option), I would ask: what is the fluff of the stance? Why does "Abjurant Armor Stance" help Reflex saves?

    2nd: Since it's not too strong, probably a little buff here to go along with the nerfs. Maybe make it "any martial strike" as it is with the JPM's Quickening Strike.
    So you could both strike and cast every turn? If you make it a swift action to cast the spell instead of a free action, I could see it.

    3rd: Mettle - yep, this ability's strong. But so was the first idea of mine, basically paladin's Divine Grace (non-stacking) but going by your primary casting stat.
    Oh my goodness that is terrifying. Mettle isn't a make or break ability, so it can stay.

    4th level: At first I wanted it to have just the same Arcane Boost sans the two offensive options (Since, you know, you have the ToB stuff to do it already). This is still a viable option.
    But maybe instead I should move the Reflex save stuff from the Abjurant Armor Stance (The original one, with the Concentration check substitution) to this level. Most probably something around these lines.
    I think I would advise a minimalistic change, given how much else you are changing. So stick with the original 4th level (minus the offense) and then see how that plays out. It could easily switch places in the leveling with Mettle to smooth the progression (since I think Mettle is worth more than this, and you get 2nd level quickening at 3rd level).

    5th: How about I make the Masterful Abjurations mass buffing have the same restriction that Quickening has, making it 3rd (Or even 2nd) level tops? This should pretty much make it party-friendly but not party-immortalizing.
    Probably the most obvious fix, and not necessarily bad, but I worry that there just aren't enough 1st through 3rd level abjuration buffs to make it significant. I mean, what spells would you actually want to make Mass? I have an idea. Instead, what if the ability was "If the subject of one of your abjuration spells is the subject of a spell that has a partial or half effect on a successful save, it suffers no adverse effects if it successfully saves".

    Actually, wait, hold on. You expanded the class bonus to AC to affect all types of AC, didn't you? So protection from evil gives +7 deflection? Woah. I'm... not sure that's a good thing. +7 deflection basically doesn't exist in D&D.
    Last edited by Vadskye; 2013-06-30 at 03:01 AM.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: Abjurant Champion Remake (ToB) [PrC]

    I will post an elaborate reply to this as soon as I get done with my family meeting (just moved in back home).

    Short answer: the Abjurant Armor stance thickens the magic barriers around you - since the the Shield spell is described as an "invisible disc" you may as well be able to intensify it hard enough to have it defend you from the magical attacks - that is, if you're fast enough. Hence Evasion.

    As for your proposition of the capstone... Isn't it basically giving your whole party a free Mettle + Evasion combo?

    EDIT: Okay - the rest.

    Prerequisites: This is meant to be taken by a fighter dabbling in magic, not the other way round. Hence the special clause that makes this possible (or rather, makes the other way impossible). Is this artificially gimping some builds? Yes. But they'd probably go IotSV or Incantatrix anyway. Better casting abilities and no casting level loss.

    The other way for this to have the desired effect would be taking away a spellcasting level at 3rd or 5th. But I am reluctant to do so.

    If I drop the Wall of Blades requirement and stick with the IHS only, the class can be entered as a Warblade4/wizard2 or Warblade5/wizard1 for martial builds or wizard4/warblade3 for more magic-oriented characters - but the sum of 4 caster level losses means that this doesn't get 9th level spells pre-epic anyway. Wizard8/Warblade1 would be now impossible too (well, they MIGHT want to take the Mage Slayer feat to qualify. This could actually be a funny character to roleplay).

    Well, I think Abjurant Armor Stance will lose the concentration check stuff and give the Champion Reflex save bonus equal to its AC bonus and grant Evasion instead. And of course, the "armor or shield bonus" part missing is only my overlook. Maybe I'll make it half the bonus for anything else than armor or shield bonus? Or really drop it as I intended initially? Duh.


    The Quickened abjurations will have the succesful strike + swift action pattern, since it's still weaker than the original - you could drop two spells if you wanted in one round. It's offset by the 5th level ability though.

    Maybe I'll rule it that to designate the recipients other than you you must sacrifice a move action if they are adjacent... Since now it can be understood however one wishes.

    You know, what really always struck me as strange/funny was the thing... The Abjurant Champion was in fact a "Shield and Luminous Armor Champion", since these were the two spells that made it so sweet.

    EDIT2: Some of the mentioned changes made.

    EDIT3:OMG NON-TOB VERSION READY

    EDIT4: I had an idea. How about I change Masterful Abjurations to be able to affect as many targets as you have iterative attacks, and rise the level cap to 4th? Would that still be too much?
    Last edited by Xerlith; 2013-07-01 at 04:10 PM.

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