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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Reinboom's Avatar

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    Mar 2007
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    Default Utilicanist (caster)[Base Class][PEACH]

    Double feature! A class and a rant!
    Utilicanist
    {table=head]Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special|0lvl|1st|2nd|3rd|4th|5th|6th|7th|8th

    1st|
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +2
    |Eschew Materials|4|2|—|—|—|—|—|—|—

    2nd|
    +1
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +3
    ||5|3|—|—|—|—|—|—|—

    3rd|
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    +3
    ||5|3|2|—|—|—|—|—|—

    4th|
    +2
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    ||6|4|3|—|—|—|—|—|—

    5th|
    +2
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    |Mimic Spell 1/day|6|4|3|—|—|—|—|—|—

    6th|
    +3
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +5
    ||6|4|4|2|—|—|—|—|—

    7th|
    +3
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +5
    |Magic Defensive 1/day|7|5|4|3|—|—|—|—|—

    8th|
    +4
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +6
    ||7|5|4|3|2|—|—|—|—

    9th|
    +4
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +6
    ||7|5|5|4|3|—|—|—|—

    10th|
    +5
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +7
    |Mimic Spell 2/day|7|5|5|4|3|—|—|—|—

    11th|
    +5
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +7
    ||8|6|5|4|4|2|—|—|—

    12th|
    +6/+1
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +8
    |Magic Defensive 2/day|8|6|5|5|4|3|—|—|—

    13th|
    +6/+1
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +8
    ||8|6|6|5|4|3|2|—|—

    14th|
    +7/+2
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +9
    ||8|6|6|5|5|4|3|—|—

    15th|
    +7/+2
    |
    +5
    |
    +5
    |
    +9
    |Mimic Spell 3/day|8|6|6|5|5|4|3|—|—

    16th|
    +8/+3
    |
    +5
    |
    +5
    |
    +10
    ||9|7|6|6|5|4|4|2|—

    17th|
    +8/+3
    |
    +5
    |
    +5
    |
    +10
    |Magic Defensive 3/day|9|7|6|6|5|5|4|3|—

    18th|
    +9/+4
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +11
    ||9|7|7|6|6|5|4|3|2

    19th|
    +9/+4
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +11
    ||9|7|7|6|6|5|5|4|3

    20th|
    +10/+5
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +12
    |Mimic Spell 4/day|9|7|7|6|6|5|5|4|3

    [/table]

    Alignment: Any
    Hit Die: 1d4
    Class Skills:
    Concentration (Con) ,Craft (Int) ,Diplomacy (Cha) ,Intimidate (Cha) ,Knowledge(all) (Int) ,Profession (Wis) , and Spellcraft (Int).
    Skill Points at 1st Level: (2 + Int modifier) Χ 4.
    Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 2 + Int modifier.

    Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Utilicanist are proficient with the club, dagger, heavy crossbow, light crossbow, and quarterstaff, but not with any type of armor or shield. Armor of any type interferes with a utilicanist’s movements, which can cause her spells with somatic components to fail.

    Spells: A utilicanist casts arcane spells which are drawn primarily from the sorcerer/wizard spell list. She can cast any spell she knows without preparing it ahead of time.

    To learn or cast a spell, a utilicanist must have a Charisma score equal to at least 10 + the spell level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a utilicanist’s spell is 10 + the spell level + the sorcerer’s Intelligence modifier.

    A utilicanist can cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day. Her base daily spell allotment is given on the above table. In addition, she receives bonus spells per day if she has a high Charisma score.

    A utilicanist has an extremely restricted number of spells known. At 1st level or whenever the utilicanist's max spell level increases, she may choose 8 spells, 1 from each school, to add to her spells known list for that new max spell level from the wizard/sorcerer spell list. A dual school spell may take the place of either school it belongs to for gaining spells known in this fashion. The utilicanist starts with all level 0 spells known.

    Upon reaching 6th level, and at every even-numbered utilicanist level after that (8th, 10th, and so on), a utilicanist can choose to learn a new spell in place of one she already knows. In effect, the utilicanist “loses” the old spell in exchange for the new one. The new spell’s level must be the same as that of the spell being exchanged, and it must be at least two levels lower than the highest-level utilicanist spell the utilicanist can cast. A utilicanist may swap only a single spell at any given level, and must choose whether or not to swap the spell at the same time that she gains new spells known for the level.

    A utilicanist does not prepare her spells in advance. She can cast any spell she knows at any time, assuming she has not yet used up her spells per day for that spell level. She does not have to decide ahead of time which spells she’ll cast.

    Eschew Materials: The utilicanist has Eschew Materials as a bonus feat (PHB pg.94).

    Mimic Spell (ex): Beginning at 5th level, the utilicanist can mimic arcane spells that are on the sorcerer/wizard spell list of up to her spell level once per day. To mimic a spell, a utilicanist must make a successful spellcraft check to idenitify the spell first and upon doing so may decide to mimic that spell or not. Then until the end of her next round, the utilicanist may cast the mimiced spell as though it was on his or her spells known list. The utilicanist may use this ability two times per day at 10th level, three times per day at 15th level, and four times per day at 20th level. This ability is an extroadinary ability; spells cast using it are still treated as normal spells.

    Magic Defensive: Upon obtaining 7th level the utilicanist gains this class feature usable 1/day as an immediate action. Upon activating, the utilicanist chooses to either gain spell resistance equal to their caster level + 10, to gain cold, fire, electrical, and acid resistance 10, or to improve these resistances by 10. The utilicanist may use this ability 2/day at level 12 and 3/day at level 17.

    Rant
    Spoiler
    Show

    First an opener to what I wished to accomplish with this class, first labeled the "Variety Mage". I have thrown around many ideas in my various docuiments on different ways to cast spells within the D&D system, observing different classes and looking for something else. The variety mage was one of the ideas that actually started having something made for it, then I just abandoned it. The original concept was just cenetered on forcing a player to have options, rather than allowing a player to have options. A kind of hypocritical idea that further used schools of magic, but in a slightly different tone.

    Fast forward a bit, and looking at more discussions and peering at what I would now consider to be my more favored official spellcasting class: the beguiler. Asking myself why I like this class.. first I enjoy spontaneous casting. I hate the whole prospect of "I can do it tomorrow", and instead having options at my fingertips—this is why I standardly play sorcerers. However, while playing sorcerer, I tend to play the support role, the utility assistant. As of this writing, a sorcerer I am playing currently has: Haste, Slow, and Dispel Magic as her level 3 spells (using a modified sorcerer, so they get 1 extra spell known for each spell level). Now, lets look at the Beguiler: Haste? Check. Slow? Yep. Dispel Magic? Why am I playing a sorcerer? 3 main reasons: 1, Beguilers can't get benign/baleful transposition (which are probably most favorite low level spells). 2, I'm a blaster at heart, still, even if it's not "in-character". and 3: I love charismatic casters. Why don't I have blasting spells? Because I don't need to, and I would be risking my party for the sake of something not even in-character. If I was forced to have a decent fireball? I would love it. This observation led me to dig back up this class, since it forces you into options, without restricting you.

    Now, how I originally designed this class is very different than what is here, very very different. I first emphasized on the options idea, forceful wide selection of spells. This, would've been a mistake and a bit counterintuitive to my new realizations. With this, I took various other ideas I had through my design notes and start recrafting it. The first to note, is the awkward spellcasting level progression, the 2-3-2-3 hops. This progression I first tested in a released class as the arcane beholder (see signature), though in a different tone that is not normal the traditional spells known system. Reexamining and reading through various articles on D&D has actually led me to discover more things about this particular progression. First, is balance in comparison to existing classes and desired actions: As a spellcaster, the toughest levels are the first few levels. It is normally a huge relief to finally gain level 2 spells, their use being so much more varied than the basic level 1 spells. This is an even larger nuisance for spontaneous casters who normally have to wait till level 4 before they can grab these spells, which also makes prestiging from these class a larger nuisance for things such as mystic theurge. Thus, the target level? Level 3. On par to the big 3 casters, since every prestige class and add-on material seams to be dominantly designed for them with a few exceptions anyways. This progression covers this weakness, it allows one to take 3 levels in whatever class has this unusual progression and a divine class to go mystic theurge, without making that already weak class more weak. The next notable aspect is the prefered levels of play. As has been done many times, and as shown by such D&D modifications as E6 (there is a seperate topic for this), the sweet-spot of D&D for a large group tends to be around level 6-10. Thus the power level in these levels needs to balance out more. Since spellcasters seam to be the major culprit here for balance issues, I needed to aim to match the current spellcasters for this, with the slowest full casters being spontaneous as well, these where my targets. At level 6? 3rd level spells. Check. At level 8? 4th level spells. Also check. What do you know, I didn't even need to adjust anything for these (completely on accident). I have now covered a large player audience for balance. Now the worst areas: The levels of 11 and higher. Since the Wizard/Cleric/Druid seam to be, once again, the main culprits here, I look to them for why. At level 11, they gain 6th level spells. Without studying more into it, I'm going to assume this to be culprit (which is very likely, giving the drastic power increase of spells). This spell progression I show? Just gets 5th level spells at level 11. This is a problem avoided then. The culprit spells do hit though, however, they don't occur until level 13. 2 more levels of enjoyment in balance, or quasi balance. I'm not sure. From here, I have left it to hope the class somewhat balances itself, at least, with the Tome of Battle classes.

    Now for the eternal "power by blood" or "power by training" debate: I don't care. To me, one can provide whatever flavor they want for their character. In reference to the sorcerer I was playing while writing this: The character might be a sorcerer, but she studies the arcane, and focuses her studies in order to improve the magic within her. This is very much a mix even though it uses just the sorcerer class with no mechanical change. If you have a fuss with the flavor of the class, there is nothing stopping you from changing it.

    Finally, 3 + Int skill points? Oh dear! It's not normal! To make something one way or another without hitting what would be the prefered design just because it's "not normal", standard—limiting your own design just because it's what's common—this is what I call bad design thought. Arcane casters have 3 dependant skills, spellcraft, concentration, and knowledge(arcana). Covering over these 3 is a must and then having leeway for options afterwards, which is provided by having int be a prime stat. Through much of my checking in it, 4+ would've become too skill heavy in certain builds.

    In observation, this is very much an "alternative sorcerer", emphasizing much more on the utility of everything.
    Last edited by Reinboom; 2007-07-11 at 09:03 PM.
    Avatar by Alarra

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    JackMage666's Avatar

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    Default Re: Utilicanist (caster)[Base Class][PEACH]

    It all looks pretty good, though I'm slightly confused by the class skills, namely Diplomacy, Intimidate, and Spot.

    Diplomacy and Intimidate somewhat make sense (based on Sorcerers getting Bluff), though I guess I'm not really seeing it. Some fluff could help this, most likely.

    Spot doesn't make sense to me, though. The only casters who has spot as a class skill I can think of are Druids (nature based perceptions) and Beguilers (rogue like perceptions). Possibly a certain domain would give it to clerics, though I'm not sure. Again, maybe some fluff could help this.

    As for your rant, I'd like to throw out my opinion on the 3+Int skill thing. I think the reason it's like that is due to a casters likelyhood of having higher mental stats, and lower physicals (this is especially the case for a Wizard). A Wizard will almost certainly have 5-6 skill points a level at low levels, taking all the skills without options (it'd be nearly impossible to take every Craft, Profession, or Intelligence). With Sorcerers, this isn't entirely the case, but it's still assumed mental>physical.
    Also, the X+Int skills seems to be based more on how many class skills the class has, not the class itself. Sorcerer has the least amount of class skills, I think (maybe tied with a fighter), so it would be kinda unfair if Sorcerers had more skills than Fighters just by right of them being Sorcerers.
    If there's a rule, there's someone out there trying to figure out how to get around it just to piss off his DM.

    Spoiler
    Show
    - The Jack-signal. Thanks Jokes!

    Avatar created by Yeril, who made it look awesome.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Reinboom's Avatar

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    Default Re: Utilicanist (caster)[Base Class][PEACH]

    Oops, Spot wasn't supposed to be there.
    Note: This is a "sort of" sorcerer. Same ideaish. But not quite. It's intended to fit with prestige classes a bit better (since most are designed for wizard first in mind) and cover the knowledge base of the party. Also, casters only complete dump stat for the physicals is str. A caster needs con (that hp bonus is more useful for a caster, as well as that fort bonus). They also can use dex, and this splits between int and cha. (so 3 main stats, 1 sub stat- which is pretty "balanced" in my opinion.). The skills allow it to cover the knowledge role of a wizard, since it obviously can't focus as much on int. I've always been bugged by the sorcerer's skills though; given that you -have- to get an int of 14 in order to really do something out of spellcasting. This just says you get something extra for it.
    That, and it is still an experimental class, so currently it's on a "why not?". Though I have been trying to rework the balance in this for the last couple weeks before actually posting it. In very small subtle ways.
    Avatar by Alarra

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