A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
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  1. - Top - End - #1
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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Quintessence, Mind Over Matter, Ki Lightning (monk feats)

    Quintessence is an anti-MAD feat originally geared towards monks (but that has been expanded to full-BAB and other low-tier classes). Mind Over Matter (anyone have a better name?) is meant to let monks duplicate some Jedi abilities, and Ki Lightning = Force Lightning. They're both quite powerful but are limited to low-tier characters, so I think it works out :D

    Quintessence [General]
    You have followed a path of "lesser" power in your adventuring career, but one that has revealed depths that you didn't know you had.

    Prerequisites
    Barbarian, Bard, Fighter, Monk, Paladin, Ranger, or Rogue level 6th.

    Benefit
    All of your ability scores are increased by 2. At 12th level your ability scores are increased by another 2, and again at 18th level (for a total of +6). Recalculate your skill points retroactively after each increase.

    Special
    A fighter may select Quintessence as one of his fighter bonus feats.

    Mind Over Matter
    Through meditation and mental discipline, you have learned to alter the physical world and even the minds of others through sheer willpower.

    Prerequisite
    Monk level 3rd.

    Benefit
    This feat grants you several spell-like abilities. Use your monk level to determine when you gain access to each ability, and your character level to determine your caster level. The save DC for each ability is 10 + one-half your character level + your Wis modifier.

    All spell-like abilities granted by this feat are useable at will, but when you use one you must wait 1d4+1 rounds before using another one (regardless of whether it is the same spell-like ability or not).

    Monk Level
    Spell-Like Ability
    3rd mage hand
    5th jump (self only)
    7th detect thoughts, levitate
    9th suggestion
    11th telekinesis
    13th modify memory

    Ki Lightning
    You are able to channel your ki into blasts of agonising indigo lightning.

    Prerequisites
    Mind Over Matter, monk level 18th, evil alignment.

    Benefits
    In addition to the spell-like abilities granted by the Mind Over Matter feat you may also use chain lightning. Any creature struck by this effect also suffers from an eyebite effect. Caster level and save DCs for these effects are determined as for Mind Over Matter.

    Special
    You retain the benefits of this feat even if your alignment becomes non-lawful (but not if it becomes non-evil).
    Last edited by rferries; 2017-06-03 at 03:23 AM.

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    nonsi's Avatar

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    Default Re: Quintessence, Mind Over Matter, Ki Lightning (monk feats)

    .
    I believe that 1 single feat granting 36 ability score points is as far as anyone ever took a feat.
    I think you need to recalibrate.

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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Quintessence, Mind Over Matter, Ki Lightning (monk feats)

    Quote Originally Posted by nonsi View Post
    .
    I believe that 1 single feat granting 36 ability score points is as far as anyone ever took a feat.
    I think you need to recalibrate.
    Ha, indeed! It's intended very much for parties that are aware of the tier differences. All the stat points in the world won't save a fighter from a wizard, this merely alleviates the pain a little bit. I suppose it could be broken down into a chain but the theme of this thread was basically quick fixes for low-tier classes so I'm not sure I'll tamper with it.

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    Devil

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    Default Re: Quintessence, Mind Over Matter, Ki Lightning (monk feats)

    So the +3 to all saves, hit, ac, hp/lvl, +3ish damage +3 skills/lvl, +3 to all skills all for one feat, is kinda the unbalanced part. Even if it's 6 levels of "low tier" class, to get the feat it makes everybody good at everything that isn't magic.

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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Quintessence, Mind Over Matter, Ki Lightning (monk feats)

    Yep! And by the time you get the full +6, all the high-tier PCs are creating demiplanes of their own, stopping time mid-combat, summoning monsters more powerful than themselves, granting their own wishes, and most importantly using shapechange (a single spell that is infinitely more powerful and versatile than any possible feat, including Quintessence).

    It's an arbitrarily powerful feat, to artificially lessen the power gap between tiers. It would be up to the DM to decide if they allowed it or some other homebrew stopgap. I certainly wouldn't expect it to see play in every game due to suspension of belief, but I think reducing the power kind of defeats the point (apart from maybe splitting it into 2 or 3 feats, though that is a feat tax on everyone but fighters).

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    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: Quintessence, Mind Over Matter, Ki Lightning (monk feats)

    Quintessence seems fine. The balance of 3.5 and PF is a joke, so it won't break anything. It's kind of a crude fix, since it does nothing to solve the true reason that martials fall behind on casters, while also creating some weird implications. With this, the fighter might end up being as charismatic as the sorcerer AND as intelligent as the wizard, without either really reflecting in his personality or playing style. I'm not sure if I would use it (if I still played PF), but I don't condemn it either.

    The one thing I question about it is: I thought bard was a pretty good class? Maybe not top tier, but it is a half caster, and very versatile. I don't think it needs such a big boost.

    Mind over matter is a fantastic idea. This actually addresses the martial vs caster problem by giving the monk additional utility instead of just pumping up the numbers. At-will suggestion is pretty crazy though... Maybe the higher level ones need a longer cooldown.

    Ki lightning seems fine too. Casting chain lightning semi-at-will is powerful, but it requires 18th level and an evil alignment, so I don't think it'll cause any problems. 3.PF has lost all semblance of balance by 18th level anyways. Be warned though, it might cause your players to scream UUUUUNLIIIIIMITEEEED POOOWAAAAAHHHH when they cast it.
    Last edited by Lalliman; 2017-06-03 at 08:02 AM.

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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Quintessence, Mind Over Matter, Ki Lightning (monk feats)

    Quote Originally Posted by Lalliman View Post
    Quintessence seems fine. The balance of 3.5 and PF is a joke, so it won't break anything. It's kind of a crude fix, since it does nothing to solve the true reason that martials fall behind on casters, while also creating some weird implications. With this, the fighter might end up being as charismatic as the sorcerer AND as intelligent as the wizard, without either really reflecting in his personality or playing style. I'm not sure if I would use it (if I still played PF), but I don't condemn it either.

    The one thing I question about it is: I thought bard was a pretty good class? Maybe not top tier, but it is a half caster, and very versatile. I don't think it needs such a big boost.

    Mind over matter is a fantastic idea. This actually addresses the martial vs caster problem by giving the monk additional utility instead of just pumping up the numbers. At-will suggestion is pretty crazy though... Maybe the higher level ones need a longer cooldown.

    Ki lightning seems fine too. Casting chain lightning semi-at-will is powerful, but it requires 18th level and an evil alignment, so I don't think it'll cause any problems. 3.PF has lost all semblance of balance by 18th level anyways. Be warned though, it might cause your players to scream UUUUUNLIIIIIMITEEEED POOOWAAAAAHHHH when they cast it.
    Indeed, Quintessence is a very unsubtle solution (so much so that if a DM allows it they're probably just as likely to allow gestalt classes or something even more powerful and not bother with the feat at all). Your ability to roleplay high Charisma etc is limited by your investment in Bluff, Diplomcy, etc; at 18th level a fighter might have +6 Charisma but without ranks in the proper skills they'll still be miles behind the party face.The same goes for the other attributes and skills.

    I did dither about Bard... ultimately I made tier 2 the cutoff for whether you could take the feat or not. The difference between bard and fighter isn't as great as the distance between bard and sorcerer, after all.

    Re: mind over matter - I was trying to duplicate the flavour of Star Wars a bit, where they aren't really limited in using the Force but still don't spam it all the time. The cooldown is enough to limit it the average encounter but there are definitely ways it could be abused out of combat, so you have a point. Maybe 3x/day or less for certain powers.

    Hah that was the idea! Cackling madly all the while, too...

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    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: Quintessence, Mind Over Matter, Ki Lightning (monk feats)

    Quote Originally Posted by rferries View Post
    Re: mind over matter - I was trying to duplicate the flavour of Star Wars a bit, where they aren't really limited in using the Force but still don't spam it all the time. The cooldown is enough to limit it the average encounter but there are definitely ways it could be abused out of combat, so you have a point. Maybe 3x/day or less for certain powers.
    Agreed. I would design it something like this.

    Monk Level
    Spell-Like Ability
    3rd mage hand (at will)
    5th jump (self only) (at will)
    7th detect thoughts (3/day), levitate (at will, requires concentration)
    9th suggestion (2/day)
    11th telekinesis (2/day)
    13th modify memory (1/day)

    Mage hand and jump can definitely afford to be at will. I would limit the use of detect thoughts, not because it's that powerful, but because it would be very annoying for the DM if someone is able to use it all the time at no cost. Levitate isn't that useful, so I don't think it needs a per day limit. However, it has a lengthy duration, so if you can cast it at will, you can spam it to eventually have hundreds of objects and creatures floating around. Thus, I would add a concentration requirement, which also matches up with how the Force is used in Star Wars. And suggestion, telekinesis and modify memory have increasingly scarce per day limits, to prevent out-of-combat abuse.

    Edit: By that same logic you could also put a per day limit on Ki Lightning, but I don't feel like that's necessary because it's just a damage spell. It's not something potentially campaign-breaking like suggestion or modify memory.
    Last edited by Lalliman; 2017-06-04 at 03:47 AM.

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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Quintessence, Mind Over Matter, Ki Lightning (monk feats)

    Concentration is a brilliant and flavourful limitation for the powers. I feel like the limits should be 3x or 1x/day instead of 2, most spell-like abilities follow those numbers.

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    Pixie in the Playground
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    Default Re: Quintessence, Mind Over Matter, Ki Lightning (monk feats)

    the Quintessence feat is super ridiculous, iirc there are epic feats you can take to increase one ability by one, and you want to give everything a +1 modifier at level 6 12 and 18?

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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Quintessence, Mind Over Matter, Ki Lightning (monk feats)

    1) The Epic stuff is already broken, as in polarised between severely underpowered (see: Polyglot feat) and potentially overpowered (see: Epic spells). Nobody would take the ability-increase epic feats.

    2) As I've mentioned above, Quintessence is aimed at closing the tier power gap (and it doesn't even really do that, just adds more numbers without granting new abilities). It's balanced around a PC's tier level, not around the standard benchmarks (i.e. other feats). Try not to look at in a vacuum; instead compare it to the spells and class abilities that hier-tier classes get.

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    WolfInSheepsClothing

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    Default Re: Quintessence, Mind Over Matter, Ki Lightning (monk feats)

    Problem is that Quintessence doesn't actually solve anything.

    The fighter and barbarian classes are some of the best damage dealers in the game, and this feat only makes them better at that, while not helping them in the 'Be useful outside of combat' thing. They get no utility whatsoever from this, apart from a few more skillpoints, which doesn't help much (but maybe 0.01%).

    Monks are still worse than fighters and barbarians.

    Bard, Monk, Paladin, Ranger, or Rogue doesn't need this.

    However, a multiclass build would delight over this, reducing the power loss from lack of caster levels and just making people build more gishes.

    You won't fix the balance issues in 3.5 by handing out bigger numbers. Either nerf the Tier 1-2 classes heavily, or boost everything else to silliness.
    Geyr n Garmr mjk
    fyr Gnipahelli,
    festr mun slitna
    en freki renna
    Now Garm howls loud
    before Gnipahellir
    The fetters will burst,
    and the wolf run free

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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Quintessence, Mind Over Matter, Ki Lightning (monk feats)

    Quote Originally Posted by fire_insideout View Post
    Problem is that Quintessence doesn't actually solve anything.

    The fighter and barbarian classes are some of the best damage dealers in the game, and this feat only makes them better at that, while not helping them in the 'Be useful outside of combat' thing. They get no utility whatsoever from this, apart from a few more skillpoints, which doesn't help much (but maybe 0.01%).

    Monks are still worse than fighters and barbarians.

    Bard, Monk, Paladin, Ranger, or Rogue doesn't need this.

    However, a multiclass build would delight over this, reducing the power loss from lack of caster levels and just making people build more gishes.

    You won't fix the balance issues in 3.5 by handing out bigger numbers. Either nerf the Tier 1-2 classes heavily, or boost everything else to silliness.
    No argument here! It was originally a monk-only feat (and therefore potentially balanced in lower-power campaigns), I just opened it to other classes at the last minute. As I've already admitted, having higher ability scores /= having more abilities (class features). Since it seems to have reached an unhappy medium I might return it to being a monk-only feat, or maybe even a monk class feature.

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    WolfInSheepsClothing

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    Default Re: Quintessence, Mind Over Matter, Ki Lightning (monk feats)

    Quote Originally Posted by rferries View Post
    No argument here! It was originally a monk-only feat (and therefore potentially balanced in lower-power campaigns), I just opened it to other classes at the last minute. As I've already admitted, having higher ability scores /= having more abilities (class features). Since it seems to have reached an unhappy medium I might return it to being a monk-only feat, or maybe even a monk class feature.
    If you want to give the monk a few easy fixes I think there are better ways than just to give them higher base stats (it just makes people take 6 levels in the class & then multiclass out :P )

    I'd start with:
    • First off, make them proficient with unarmed strikes...
    • Full BAB (the monk is a melee combatant, they should be good at hitting things)
    • Ability to enhance their unarmed weapons as if they were regular weapons (because having your nose be a +5 holy vorpal weapon is awesome, and removes the need for gauntlets and stuff)
    • Ability to key attack, damage & grapple bonus to either STR, DEX or WIS depending on the preferred build (reduces MAD, fluff as a 'path' or something) or give just use the better of WIS or STR to attack, damage and grapple
    • Let them freely multiclass (because restricting this is silly)
    • Remove the penalty on the flurry (It's aptly called 'Flurry of misses' for a reason)
    • Let them flurry as a attack action so they can move and strike (becoming the agile, fast warrior the archetype often depicts)
    • Replace ki strike with something useful.


    My two cents. Happy gaming!
    Last edited by fire_insideout; 2017-06-09 at 04:50 AM.
    Geyr n Garmr mjk
    fyr Gnipahelli,
    festr mun slitna
    en freki renna
    Now Garm howls loud
    before Gnipahellir
    The fetters will burst,
    and the wolf run free

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