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Thread: Elder Cat

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    Titan in the Playground
     
    Zaydos's Avatar

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    Default Elder Cat

    Cat, Elder
    Tiny Magical Beast
    Hit Dice: 5d10 (27 hp)
    Initiative: +8
    Speed: 30 ft (6 squares)
    Armor Class: 20 (+2 size, +4 Dexterity, +4 armor [Mage Armor]), touch 16, flat-footed 16
    Base Attack/Grapple: +5/-6
    Attack: Claw +11 melee (1d2-4)
    Full Attack: 2 Claws +11 melee (1d2-4) and bite +6 melee (1d3-4)
    Space/Reach: 2-1/2 ft/0 ft
    Special Attacks: Spellcasting, Spell-like abilities
    Special Qualities: Bind Familiar, Command Cats, Darkvision 60 ft, Low-Light Vision, Sense Link.
    Saves: Fort +4, Ref +8, Will +3
    Abilities: Str 3, Dex 18, Con 11, Int 14, Wis 15, Cha 14
    Skills: Balance +12, Climb +8, Hide +18*, Jump +12, Knowledge (any 3) +7, Listen +4, Move Silently +10, Sense Motive +7, Spellcraft +10, Spot +4.
    Feats: Stealthy, Weapon FinesseB
    Environment: Cities.
    Organization: Solitary and minions (3-60 cats, 1 familiar)
    Challenge Rating: 8
    Treasure: Double standard
    Alignment: Usually True Neutral
    Advancement: 6-20 HD (Tiny) or by Character Class.
    Level Adjustment: +4

    Cats have had a long tradition in connection with horror, occultism, and Halloween. A black cat is a sign of bad luck*, and a familiar of witches. In Lovecraft a cat is a mystical being which falls on the benevolent side. Old cats especially are accredited with magical power and thinking on that I couldn’t help but want to create such a cat. Thus I present you with the Elder Cat.

    On occasion a cat will live past their normal span of fifteen or so years, living on in the alleys and streets of the city moving through it like a living shadow. If these cats live long enough they will begin to change. When such a cat reaches a century of life they will awaken to full sapience as they become an elder cat.

    Physically identical to an ordinary, if old seeming, cat, an elder cat is an immortal creature of great magical power. An ordinary cat is the servant of the mage, a familiar in waiting, but the elder cat is something else. An elder cat is able to rally ordinary felines to its will, to command them absolutely when it desires, but that is not the most important aspect of an Elder Cat. An Elder Cat is a mage themself, capable of working magic of illusion and enchantment. With these powers an Elder Cat creates a network of information which it leverages into power becoming a shadowy figure in the city’s underworld working with its criminal elements as they suit the elder cat’s needs.

    The last noteworthy aspect of an Elder Cat is its ability to bind a familiar. Where a normal cat is the familiar of a wizard, an Elder Cat can make a mage its familiar, promising them arcane power and knowledge in exchange for the mage acting as the cat’s face with the human world.

    Combat:

    An Elder Cat prefers to avoid personally engaging in combat whenever possible. If pressed they will fight using their spells, their familiar, and any cats or cat swarms they can gather to their aid. The stats above include a Mage Armor spell cast by the cat.

    Bind Familiar (Su): An Elder Cat is able to bind a humanoid arcane spellcaster as its ‘familiar’. This spellcaster may have a character level no greater than 1 less than the Elder Cat’s. An Elder Cat that binds a humanoid as a “familiar” gains an ability bonus based upon their familiar’s subtype. If their familiar has multiple subtypes use the first one on the table from the top.
    Subtype Bonus
    Elf +3 to Spellcraft checks
    Dwarf +3 to Constitution checks (but not Concentration)
    Gnome +3 to Listen checks
    Catfolk +3 to Move Silently checks
    Goblinoid +3 to Move Silently checks
    Halfling +3 to Hide checks
    Orc +3 to Intimidate checks
    Hadozee +3 to Climb checks
    Asherati +2 to Hide and Move Silently checks
    Kenku +3 to Sleight of Hand checks
    Kender +3 to Sleight of Hand checks
    Human 2 times per day +3 to any skill check
    Darfellan +3 to Listen checks
    Illumian +3 to Decipher Script checks
    Gnoll +3 to Survival checks
    Maenad +3 to Perform
    Xeph +3 to Tumble
    Nezumi +3 to Survival
    Reptilian +3 to Concentration checks
    Aquatic +3 to Swim
    Shapechanger +3 to Disguise
    Spirit +3 to Knowledge (Religion)
    Dragonblood +3 to Knowledge (Arcana)
    Psionic +3 to Knowledge (Psionic)
    Incarnum +3 to Knowledge (the Planes)
    An Elder Cat can communicate with its familiar telepathically out to 1 mile, and grants its familiar a modicum of the Elder Cat’s own power as well as helping to teach them in the magical arts, in exchange for their service. This “familiar” gains a +2 to all ability scores for the purposes of casting spells, and a +2 to their arcane caster level for the purposes of Enchantment and Illusion. The Elder Cat can share spells with their “familiar” and allow them to deliver touch spells as the familiar abilities of the same name. The Elder Cat and the “familiar” gain the benefits of the Alertness feat as long as they are within 5 ft of each other and the Elder Cat can see and hear whatever their “familiar” does. If the Elder Cat offers a telepathic order to its “familiar” its “familiar” must make a Will save (DC 10 + ˝ the Elder Cat’s character level + Cha mod + 4 racial bonus; default 18) to disobey, and the Elder Cat will often revoke “familiar” hood (a standard action).
    Binding a creature as a “familiar” requires it to be conscious and willing, and a 6 hour ritual which must be performed on the night of a new moon and requires 500 GP worth of reagents.

    Command Cats (Su): An Elder Cat is able to issue binding commands to any ordinary house cat, these commands being irresistible compulsions to them. An Elder Cat can issue a command to an abnormal cat, such as a familiar, a celestial/fiendish cat, a tiger, a catfolk, a tibbit, or a cat hengeyokai, but in such a case the cat is allowed a Will save (DC 10 + ˝ Elder Cat’s character level + Charisma modifier; default 14) or be compelled to obey as if with a suggestion spell with a caster level of the Elder Cat’s character level. A cat which successfully saves against this effect is immune to that Elder Cat’s Command Cats ability for 24 hours.

    Sense Link (Su): An Elder Cat is able to link its senses with those of another willing cat with a touch. An Elder Cat can see and hear all things the other cat sees or hears, but this link does not work both ways and the other cat gains no benefit. The Elder Cat may end this link at any time as a standard action, and may only have 4 such links in existence at a time.

    Spellcasting: An Elder Cat is able to cast spells as an 8th level Beguiler.

    Spell-like Abilities: At-will: Detect Magic, Ghost Sound, MageHand, Open/Close, Prestidigitation, Speak with Animals (cats only); 3/day Speak with Animals, Unseen Servant; 1/day Dimension Door, Scrying. CL 7; save DCs 12 + spell level.
    Skills: Elder Cats have a +4 racial bonus on Climb, Hide, and Move Silently checks and a +8 racial bonus on Jump checks. Elder Cats have a +8 racial bonus on Balance checks. They use their Dexterity modifier instead of their Strength modifier for Climb and Jump checks. *In areas of tall grass or heavy undergrowth, the Hide bonus rises to +8.

    Elder Cats as Familiars: A character with the Legendary Familiar (remind me to add hyperlink when I have reliable internet) and a caster level of at least 15 may take an Elder Cat as a familiar. This Elder Cat's familiar and spellcasting abilities are based upon its hit dice without being a familiar (8th) not its hit dice due to being a familiar.
    Last edited by Zaydos; 2015-10-16 at 02:34 PM.
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    Troll in the Playground
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    Default Re: Elder Cat

    So great dracolich zaydos sama. Would you explain to this humble servant what happens in 15 warlock takes elder cat as familiar than elder cat gets lovely elf magus as its familiar is warlock gains the magus as familiar or nothing happens

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    PirateGirl

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    Default Re: Elder Cat

    Interesting. Good thing the familiar spellcaster has to be "willing" or this could get ugly with a low-level party.

    Debby
    P.E.A.C.H. Please Evaluate And Critique Honestly. Being nicer and kinder doesn't hurt either. Note I generally only critique 3.5 and Pathfinder material.
    Please, please, please when using non-core material, cite to the books. There are too many books to wade through to find the one with the feat, special ability or spell you use.
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    Your base speed is wrong. It says 30ft (10 squares)

    Also, between this, my kitten, and a dream you have inspired an idea of my own. Thank you.
    Having trouble writing up hard stat blocks but I'm doing a lot of sharing ideas and soft mechanics lately.

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    Default Re: Elder Cat

    Did you want it to have a +4 armor bonus or a +4 natural armor bonus?
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    Default Re: Elder Cat

    Quote Originally Posted by khadgar567 View Post
    So great dracolich zaydos sama. Would you explain to this humble servant what happens in 15 warlock takes elder cat as familiar than elder cat gets lovely elf magus as its familiar is warlock gains the magus as familiar or nothing happens
    Nothing happens. The elf magus would gain the benefits of being the elder cat's familiar, but gain no additional abilities due to whatever abilities you grant your familiar.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Mentalist View Post
    Your base speed is wrong. It says 30ft (10 squares)

    Also, between this, my kitten, and a dream you have inspired an idea of my own. Thank you.
    Excellent. And yeah it should be 6 squares like a cat.

    Quote Originally Posted by Solaris View Post
    Did you want it to have a +4 armor bonus or a +4 natural armor bonus?
    Added fluff/combat section and clarified stats include a casting of the Mage Armor spell.
    Peanut Half-Dragon Necromancer by Kurien.

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    Now that I've had more time to read through the elder cat, here is my full critique.

    I have a little bit of issue of back story. A cat that exceeds its exceeds lifespan should die of old age. You need a mechanism to explain how it can live a century before becoming an elder cat. If the cat is immortal, why isn't that listed as a Special Ability? They still need to eat, breathe and sleep as they are magical beasts and not outsiders. To remedy this, I changed your introduction while keeping to your words as much as possible. It needed a bit of spit and polish. Note you had an asterisk on bad luck but no corresponding text with it so I removed it. It's long so I put it in a spoiler.

    Spoiler
    Show
    Cats have had a long tradition in connection with horror, occultism, and Halloween. A black cat is a sign of bad luck, and a familiar of witches. In Lovecraft's works, a cat is a mystical being which falls on the benevolent side. Old cats especially are accredited with magical power. Thinking on that, I couldn’t help but want to create such a cat. Thus, I present you with the elder cat.

    On occasion, a cat will live past its normal span of fifteen or so years, living on in the alleys and streets of its city, moving through it like a living shadow. If these cats live long enough, they will begin to change. When such a cat reaches at least a quarter-century of life, it will sometimes spontaneously awaken to full sapience, becoming an elder cat.

    Physically identical to an ordinary, if old-seeming cat, an elder cat is an immortal creature of great magical power. While an ordinary cat may become the servant of the mage, a familiar in waiting, an elder cat is something else. An elder cat is able to rally ordinary felines to its will, to command them absolutely when it desires, but that is not its most important aspect. An elder cat is a mage, capable of working illusions and enchantments. With these powers, an elder cat often creates a network of information, leveraging into power and becoming a shadowy figure in its city’s underworld. They frequently work with criminal elements as they suit the elder cat’s needs.

    The most noteworthy aspect of an elder cat is its ability to bind a Humanoid familiar. Whereas a normal cat becomes the familiar of a sorcerer or wizard, an elder cat takes on a Humanoid arcane spellcaster as its own familiar with promises of arcane power and knowledge in exchange for acting as the cat’s face with the human world. However, elder cats hate to be disobeyed and will unceremoniously unbind a familiar that proves to be uncooperative.


    With the change of introduction, you should add the following Special Ability.

    Immortal (Ex): Elder cats do not age and gain no bonuses or penalties due to aging though they can die from other natural causes and are subject to death from massive damage.

    Can it speak and if so what languages? If it cannot speak, how does it cast spells with verbal components (see mage armor). Even if it cannot speak, it should understand 2 languages with its high Int.

    You should note that it is missing a feat. If it cannot speak, I recommend that you add Silent Spell to its list of feats and keep Weapon Finesse a bonus feat since it is a feat short. If it can speak, then just make Weapon Finesse a standard feat or keep it as a bonus feat and add any other feat it qualifies for.

    DC for supernatural abilities is 10 + 1/2 HD + ability modifier. Your DCs are all wrong for the formula you used. Don't use Character Level for HD as they aren't the same. The creature has 9 character levels (HD and LA) but only 5 HD. 10 +4 +2=16 not 18. The DCs should be 10 +2 +2=14 and just add a +4 racial bonus to get the number you want. which is 18.

    Bind Familiar could be cleaned up as well. Put the table after all the text so that it's not broken up. Here is my suggestion in spoilers for length.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Bind Familiar (Su): An elder cat may bind a willing Humanoid arcane spellcaster with a lower ECL as its familiar. Binding a familiar offers a number of benefits as follows:
    • The elder cat gains an ability bonus based upon its familiar’s subtype. If its familiar has multiple subtypes, use the first one listed in the table below.
    • An elder cat can communicate with its familiar telepathically out to 1 mile.
    • In exchange for serving as elder cat's familiar, the familiar gains a +4 Insight bonus when casting spells from the Enchantment and Illusion schools and a +2 Insight bonus when casting spells from any other school.
    • Furthermore, the elder cat can share spells with its familiar as the wizard ability and grants its familiar the ability to deliver touch spells as the wizard ability.
    • The elder cat and its familiar gain the benefits of the Alertness feat as long as they are within 5 feet of each other and the Elder Cat can see and hear whatever its familiar does.

    If the Elder Cat offers a telepathic order to its familiar, its familiar must make a Will save (DC 18) to disobey. The save DC is Charisma-based and includes a +4 racial bonus. As a standard action, elder cat can unbind any familiar it has bound, causing an immediate cessation of gained abilities.

    The binding ritual requires the subject to be conscious and willing, takes 6 hours to complete, must be performed on the night of a new moon, and costs 500 gp worth of reagents.


    Speaking of binding a Humanoid, what about half-elves and half-orcs? You should probably state explicitly that half-elves count as elves and half-orcs count as orcs for this. Also, Illumians have the Human subtype not the Illumian subtype, see Races of Destiny page 53, unless that has been updated in a later book or errata. Extraplana as a possible subtype is missing from your list.

    Command Cats is phrased a bit awkwardly.

    Command Cats (Su): An elder cat is able to issue binding commands to normal cats and to cat-like creatures such as a familiar cat, celestial/fiendish cat, tiger, catfolk, tibbit, and cat hengeyokai. Cat-like creatures are allowed a Will save (DC 18) to be compelled to obey as if with a suggestion spell. Any creature that successfully saves against this effect is immune to that elder cat’s Command Cats ability for 24 hours. The save DC is Charisma-based and includes a + 4 racial modifier.

    As this is an Intelligent creature, it would just advance by Character class. Note that normal cats do not advance at all.
    Debby
    Last edited by Debihuman; 2015-10-18 at 01:20 PM.
    P.E.A.C.H. Please Evaluate And Critique Honestly. Being nicer and kinder doesn't hurt either. Note I generally only critique 3.5 and Pathfinder material.
    Please, please, please when using non-core material, cite to the books. There are too many books to wade through to find the one with the feat, special ability or spell you use.
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