A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
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  1. - Top - End - #91
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Venger's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    I advise submitting as soon as you can, just in case. That's what I did.

    My dish is in. Can't wait for the reveal
    I've got a new fantasy TTRPG about running your own fencing school in a 3 musketeers pastiche setting. Book coming soon.

    Check out my new sci-fi TTRPG about first contact. Cool alien races, murderous AIs, and more. New book coming soon.

    Quote Originally Posted by weckar View Post
    Venger, can you be my full-time memory aid please?
    Iron Chef Medals!
    Amazing Princess Mononoke avatar by Dispozition

  2. - Top - End - #92
    Nerdomancer in the Playground Moderator
     
    DruidGuy

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    finished, whew.

    thanks :)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nifft View Post
    More sources, more choices, more power. Welcome to D&D.
    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee
    I mean, I have been assuming Jdizzlean looks like Nathan Fillion this whole time to start with...
    The Mod Life Crisis If you need me to address a thread as a Moderator, please include a link

  3. - Top - End - #93
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Sep 2014

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Almost done with the table and the tangle of skills, gotta do fluff and spells which is not too bad...hopefully. Should have it in tonite or tomorrow afternoon as the latest.

  4. - Top - End - #94
    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Quote Originally Posted by Hiro Quester View Post
    I'm almost done. I have made all the decisions, but have to finish and proof the writeup. I should be able to get that done in the next day or so.

    Heliomance, Judges, are you okay with this looseness, or would you like a firm deadline? I know I will want to keep polishing until I have to let it go. Deadlines are helpful to focus your efforts, sometimes.
    As a judge I can wait until the weekend (which is honestly when I'll have the time to review builds) but of course it's Heliomance's decision.
    Kolyarut Avatar by Potatocubed.
    Quote Originally Posted by willpell View Post
    Only playing Tier 1s is like only eating in five-star restaurants [...] sometimes I just want a cheeseburger and some frogurt. Why limit yourself?
    Awards

  5. - Top - End - #95
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Sep 2014

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    I will have mine in tomorrow afternoon/evening. I need to finish the level by level breakdown and do fluff but all decisions are made and tables done. Thanks for the extension.

  6. - Top - End - #96
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    Heliomance's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Current plan is to extend until after the weekend
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kalirren View Post
    The only person in the past two pages who has known what (s)he has been talking about is Heliomance.
    Quote Originally Posted by golentan View Post
    I just don't want to have long romantic conversations or any sort of drama with my computer, okay? It knows what kind of porn I watch. I don't want to mess that up by allowing it to judge any of my choices in romance.

    Avatar by Rain Dragon

    Wish building characters for D&D 3.5 was simpler? Try HeroForge Anew! An Excel-based, highly automated character builder. v7.4 now out!

  7. - Top - End - #97
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Venger's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Thanks for the update.
    I've got a new fantasy TTRPG about running your own fencing school in a 3 musketeers pastiche setting. Book coming soon.

    Check out my new sci-fi TTRPG about first contact. Cool alien races, murderous AIs, and more. New book coming soon.

    Quote Originally Posted by weckar View Post
    Venger, can you be my full-time memory aid please?
    Iron Chef Medals!
    Amazing Princess Mononoke avatar by Dispozition

  8. - Top - End - #98
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    NinjaGuy

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Quote Originally Posted by Heliomance View Post
    Current plan is to extend until after the weekend
    Thank you!!

  9. - Top - End - #99
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Made it in. Should be formatted correctly. A day later than I wanted but it is done. Thanks a tons for the extension. Super excited about the round.

  10. - Top - End - #100
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Hiro Quester's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Mine's in too. Hopefully I got the formatting to work. That was fun. But a few late nights to get it all decided, built, illustrated and explained.

    Looking forward to seeing what y'all have cooked up.
    Quote Originally Posted by danielxcutter View Post
    This. This sooooo much. I wasn't expecting *two* thread wins from you.
    Spoiler: Avatar & Iron Chef Awards
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    Awesome Dragonfire Bard Avatar by Oneris. A detailed version is here.
    Iron Chef awards:
    IC C Swiftblade: Honorable Mention for Pahika Kanikani, the Wardancer
    IC CII Blade Dancer: Silver for Hu Tiaowu, the Jungle Guardian

  11. - Top - End - #101
    Titan in the Playground
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Helio, your PM box is full. Don't worry about the one I was trying to send you, though! It was just a request for you to confirm that my images were visible, but then I realized that I could just go on a different computer (that didn't have the images cached) and look at my own sent items folder, so that's not something you need to concern yourself with. I'm satisfied with my entries and you need not delay anything on my behalf.

    Of course, I can't say whether or not there will be other people trying to flood you with last-minute entries and updates at this point, but since I know you get an automated email when someone tries and fails to send you a PM and my name will be on that email, I figure it's worth telling you not to be concerned just out of courtesy.
    In the Beginning Was the Word, and the Word Was Suck: A Guide to Truenamers

    Quote Originally Posted by Doc Roc View Post
    Gentlefolk, learn from Zaq's example, and his suffering. Remember, seven out of eleven players who use truenamer lose their ability to taste ice cream.
    Come join the Iron Chef Optimization Challenge in the Playground E6 Appetizer Edition! We're currently cooking for round 40. Everyone is welcome!

    My compiled Iron Chef stuff!

    ~ Gay all day, queer all year ~

  12. - Top - End - #102
    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Looks like we're shaping up to have a pretty big round. I eagerly await the opportunity to sample them.

    Last edited by The Viscount; 2019-11-24 at 06:44 PM.
    Kolyarut Avatar by Potatocubed.
    Quote Originally Posted by willpell View Post
    Only playing Tier 1s is like only eating in five-star restaurants [...] sometimes I just want a cheeseburger and some frogurt. Why limit yourself?
    Awards

  13. - Top - End - #103
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Hiro Quester's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Quote Originally Posted by Zaq View Post
    Helio, your PM box is full.
    I just had the same issue. I noticed a small error with my entry (reading the sent message), in that one of the saving throws is higher by one point. Also a minor presentation issue could be fixed.

    Tried to send you a replacement with the error corrected just now, but the system says your inbox is full and you need to clear some space before you can receive messages.

    I have the corrected version ready to send to you. When you are able to receive messages, please let us know.
    Quote Originally Posted by danielxcutter View Post
    This. This sooooo much. I wasn't expecting *two* thread wins from you.
    Spoiler: Avatar & Iron Chef Awards
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    Awesome Dragonfire Bard Avatar by Oneris. A detailed version is here.
    Iron Chef awards:
    IC C Swiftblade: Honorable Mention for Pahika Kanikani, the Wardancer
    IC CII Blade Dancer: Silver for Hu Tiaowu, the Jungle Guardian

  14. - Top - End - #104
    Troll in the Playground
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    One entry done, though getting the same full inbox issue. Another build mostly done but I still need to do skills and fluff, which I likely won't have time to finish.
    Optimization Showcase in the Playground

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    Archer Build Compendium

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    GOLD
    IC LXXVI: Talos
    IC LXXV: Alphonse Louise Constant
    IC XLIX: Babalon, Queen of Bones
    IC XLV: Dead Mists
    IC XL: Lycus Blackbeak
    IC XXXIX: AM-1468
    IC XXXV: Parsifal the Fool
    IC XXX: Jal Filius

  15. - Top - End - #105
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    NinjaGuy

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Build is done and will be submitted once Heliomance's inbox has space!!! Really excited to see what everyone came up with!

  16. - Top - End - #106
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    Heliomance's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Sorry about the inbox, it now has space!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kalirren View Post
    The only person in the past two pages who has known what (s)he has been talking about is Heliomance.
    Quote Originally Posted by golentan View Post
    I just don't want to have long romantic conversations or any sort of drama with my computer, okay? It knows what kind of porn I watch. I don't want to mess that up by allowing it to judge any of my choices in romance.

    Avatar by Rain Dragon

    Wish building characters for D&D 3.5 was simpler? Try HeroForge Anew! An Excel-based, highly automated character builder. v7.4 now out!

  17. - Top - End - #107
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Hiro Quester's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Quote Originally Posted by Heliomance View Post
    Sorry about the inbox, it now has space!
    Awesome! Thanks again.

    I am at work right now, but I will try to resend mine in the next couple of hours
    Quote Originally Posted by danielxcutter View Post
    This. This sooooo much. I wasn't expecting *two* thread wins from you.
    Spoiler: Avatar & Iron Chef Awards
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    Awesome Dragonfire Bard Avatar by Oneris. A detailed version is here.
    Iron Chef awards:
    IC C Swiftblade: Honorable Mention for Pahika Kanikani, the Wardancer
    IC CII Blade Dancer: Silver for Hu Tiaowu, the Jungle Guardian

  18. - Top - End - #108
    Troll in the Playground
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Mine is in! Thanks, Helio. Work is a bit busy so I doubt I'll have time to finish the second build, but I'm glad I got my main idea completed.

    Looking forward to the reveal!
    Optimization Showcase in the Playground

    Former projects:
    Shadowcaster Handbook
    Archer Build Compendium

    Iron Chef Awards!
    Spoiler
    Show

    GOLD
    IC LXXVI: Talos
    IC LXXV: Alphonse Louise Constant
    IC XLIX: Babalon, Queen of Bones
    IC XLV: Dead Mists
    IC XL: Lycus Blackbeak
    IC XXXIX: AM-1468
    IC XXXV: Parsifal the Fool
    IC XXX: Jal Filius

  19. - Top - End - #109
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    NinjaGuy

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Build submitted! :)

  20. - Top - End - #110
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Hiro Quester's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Sent. I'm kind of proud of this, my first ever entry. And really curious what others have cooked up.
    Quote Originally Posted by danielxcutter View Post
    This. This sooooo much. I wasn't expecting *two* thread wins from you.
    Spoiler: Avatar & Iron Chef Awards
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    Awesome Dragonfire Bard Avatar by Oneris. A detailed version is here.
    Iron Chef awards:
    IC C Swiftblade: Honorable Mention for Pahika Kanikani, the Wardancer
    IC CII Blade Dancer: Silver for Hu Tiaowu, the Jungle Guardian

  21. - Top - End - #111
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    Heliomance's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    I have 27 unread messages in my inbox, you filthy keeners O_o

    Alright, one last time, let's do this!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kalirren View Post
    The only person in the past two pages who has known what (s)he has been talking about is Heliomance.
    Quote Originally Posted by golentan View Post
    I just don't want to have long romantic conversations or any sort of drama with my computer, okay? It knows what kind of porn I watch. I don't want to mess that up by allowing it to judge any of my choices in romance.

    Avatar by Rain Dragon

    Wish building characters for D&D 3.5 was simpler? Try HeroForge Anew! An Excel-based, highly automated character builder. v7.4 now out!

  22. - Top - End - #112
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    Heliomance's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Right, entry number 1:

    Quote Originally Posted by Myra Dale
    Myra Dale

    Spoiler: Fluff
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    Henry Hartog considered himself a lucky man. Not a month ago his fortunes as a merchant had been waning. It had seemed like all he had built for himself would collapse. But then that woman had come into his life.
    ***
    The thief was moving quickly through the large mansion. The initial approach had been quick, with magical passageways prepared in advance granting the intruder access to the mansion’s interior. Soon, the most infamous burglar in the country overlooking the vault room.
    ***
    The merchant looked over the duke’s selection of wines. She’d been rather specific about the wine she wanted, but he could forgive her her eccentricities. It was her advice that had restored his fortune after all. He’d never met someone as bright and intelligent as her, and the way she’d predicted the market had been nothing short of magical.
    ***
    The room below seemed to contain only a couple of guards, but the intruder wasn’t fooled. A quick burst of magic, and the guards previously hidden by magic became visible as well. Among them mages with the tell-tale glow on their eyes of detection magic. The thief suppressed a sigh of disappointment. The baron had been warned about her coming, yet this was all he’d done to protect his treasure? With a shrug, she leapt from her perch down into the room below.
    ***
    “Henry, you old miser, I’ve just heard the most delightful rumor.” An old friend approached the merchant as he stood at the buffet, waiting for a servant to return to him with the wine he had requested. “Apparently, the phantom thief has announced a visit to the Baron. He even gave a date, being tonight. So naturally the old man arranged this party. He thinks he’ll catch the thief and be able to present him to all of us before the night is over.”
    ***
    As the phantom thief leapt, everything in the room below came to a standstill. Even the flames in the fireplace stopped moving. The burglar landed quietly in front of the vault. Two quick hand movements followed, and the vault door opened. As it did, the thief noticed an odd device at the door’s corner, which caused a chuckle. It was one of the College Arcanum’s devices, one likely intended to deploy some kind of paralyzing magic shortly after the vault door opened. The device would have an in-built delay to ensure it caught whoever entered the vault. That delay was too long however. The thief stepped into the vault, and quickly swapped the baron’s medal with the thief’s signature, a single red scale.

    Then the thief rushed out of the vault and climbed back up to the perch from which the raid had started. A last burst of magic, and the vault closed again. And everything in the room below started moving again.

    Now, all that was left to do was to make sure her alibi remained intact.
    ***
    Henry finally returned to where he’d left his companion. She was standing exactly where he’d left her, a pensive expression on her scarlet face as she stared off into the distance. “I hope I haven’t made you wait for too long, my dear.” He said as he handed her the glass of wine.

    “Oh, it felt like no time at all, dear Henry.” She smiled. “No time at all.”


    Spoiler: Tables
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    Stub: CN lesser Tiefling beguiler 5/warblade 1/jade phoenix mage 4/swiftblade 10

    Ability scores
    Base Racial Level 4 Level 8 Level 12 Level 16 Level 20 total
    STR 12 - - - - - 1 13
    DEX 14 +2 +1 +1 +1 +1 - 20
    CON 14 - - - - - - 14
    INT 16 +2 - - - - - 18
    WIS 10 - - - - - - 10
    CHA 12 -2 - - - - - 10

    Level Class Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Skills Feats Class Features
    1st beguiler 1 +0 +0 +0 +2 concentration 4, spellcraft 4, knowledge(arcana) 4, knowledge (religion) 2 (CC), spot 4, move silent 4, sleight of hand 4, jump 4, tumble 4, search 4 weapon finesse armored mage, trapfinding
    2nd beguiler 2 +1 +0 +0 +3 concentration 5, spellcraft 5, knowledge(arcana) 5, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 5, move silent 5, sleight of hand 5, jump 5, tumble 5, search 5, gather information 1 - cloaked casting (+1 DC), surprise casting
    3rd beguiler 3 +1 +1 +1 +3 concentration 6, spellcraft 6, knowledge(arcana) 5, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 6, move silent 6, sleight of hand 6, jump 6, tumble 6, search 6, gather information 1, skill trick: conceal spellcasting midnight dodge advanced learning(dead end)
    4th Beguiler 4 +2 +1 +1 +4 concentration 7, spellcraft 7, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 7, move silent 7, sleight of hand 7, jump 7, tumble 7, search 7, gather information 1, skill trick: conceal spellcasting - -
    5th Warblade 1 +3 +3 +1 +4 concentration 8, spellcraft 7, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 7, move silent 7, sleight of hand 8(CC), jump 8, tumble 8, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting - battle clarity (reflex saves), weapon aptitude
    6th beguiler 5 +3 +3 +1 +4 concentration 9, spellcraft 9, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 9, move silent 9, sleight of hand 9, jump 9, tumble 9, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting Mobility silent spell
    7th Jade phoenix mage 1 +4 +5 +1 +5 concentration 10, spellcraft 9, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 10(CC), move silent 9, sleight of hand 10(CC), jump 9, tumble 10, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting - arcane wrath, rite of waking
    8th jade phoenix mage 2 +5 +6 +1 +4 concentration 11, spellcraft 9, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 11(CC), move silent 9, sleight of hand 11(CC), jump 9, tumble 11, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting - mystic phoenix stance
    9th swiftblade 1 +6 +6 +3 +6 concentration 12, spellcraft 9, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 12, move silent 9, sleight of hand 12(CC), jump 12, tumble 12, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting practiced spellcaster (beguiler) spring attack, swift surge+1/+0 ft.
    10th swiftblade 2 +7 +6 +4 +7 concentration 13, spellcraft 9, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 13, move silent 10(CC), sleight of hand 13(CC), jump 13, tumble 13, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting - blurred alacrity
    11th swiftblade 3 +8 +7 +4 +7 concentration 14, spellcraft 9, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 14, move silent 11(CC), sleight of hand 14(CC), jump 14, tumble 14, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting - sudden casting
    12th swiftblade 4 +9 +7 +5 +8 concentration 15, spellcraft 9, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 15, move silent 12(CC), sleight of hand 15(CC), jump 15, tumble 15, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting shape soulmeld(impulse boots) arcane reflexes, swift surge +1/+10 ft.
    13th swiftblade 5 +10 +7 +5 +8 concentration 16, spellcraft 9, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 16, move silent 13(CC), sleight of hand 16(CC), jump 16, tumble 16, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting - evasive celerity
    14th swiftblade 6 +11 +8 +6 +9 concentration 17, spellcraft 9, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 16, move silent 14(CC), sleight of hand 17(CC), jump 17, tumble 17, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting - fortified hustle
    15th swiftblade 7 +12 +8 +6 +9 concentration 18, spellcraft 9, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 18, move silent 15(CC), sleight of hand 18(CC), jump 18, tumble 18, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting
    open least chakra (feet) bounding assault, swift surge +2/+10 ft.
    16th swiftblade 8 +x +x +x +x concentration 19, spellcraft 9, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 19, move silent 16(CC), sleight of hand 19(CC), jump 19, tumble 19, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting
    - diligent rapidity
    17th swiftblade 9 +14 +9 +7 +10 concentration 20, spellcraft 9, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 20, move silent 17(CC), sleight of hand 20(CC), jump 20, tumble 20, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting - perpetual options
    18th swiftblade 10 +15 +9 +8 +11 concentration 21, spellcraft 9, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 21, move silent 18(CC), sleight of hand 21(CC), jump 21, tumble 21, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting martial stance (flame's blessing) innervate speed
    19th jade phoenix mage 3 +16 +10 +9 +12 concentration 22, spellcraft 9, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 22, move silent 19(CC), sleight of hand 22(CC), jump 22, tumble 22, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting - -
    20th jade phoenix mage 4 +17 +11 +9 +12 concentration 23, spellcraft 9, knowledge(arcana) 7, knowledge (religion) 2, spot 23, move silent 20(CC), sleight of hand 23(CC), jump 23, tumble 23, search 7, gather information 1, knowledge(history) 3, skill trick: conceal spellcasting - empower strike

    Spoiler: Maneuvers and spells/day table
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    stances
    punishing stance
    flame's blessing (feat)

    maneuvers
    claw at the moon (warblade)
    sudden leap (warblade)
    steel wind (warblade)
    burning blade (JPM)
    ring of fire (JPM)

    Spells per Day (includes bonus spells from high INT)
    Level 0lvl 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
    1st 5 4 - - - - - - - -
    2nd 6 5 - - - - - - - -
    3rd 6 6 - - - - - - - -
    4th 6 7 4 - - - - - - -
    5th 6 7 4 - - - - - - -
    6th 6 7 5 - - - - - - -
    7th 6 7 5 - - - - - - -
    8th 6 7 6 4 - - - - - -
    9th 6 7 6 4 - - - - - -
    10th 6 7 7 5 - - - - - -
    11th 6 7 7 6 4 - - - - -
    12th 6 7 7 6 4 - - - - -
    13th 6 7 7 7 5 - - - - -
    14th 6 7 7 7 6 3 - - - -
    15th 6 7 7 7 6 3 - - - -
    16th 6 7 7 7 7 4 - - - -
    17th 6 7 7 7 7 5 3 - - -
    18th 6 7 7 7 7 5 3 - - -
    19th 6 7 7 7 7 6 4 - - -
    20th 6 7 7 7 7 6 5 3 - -



    Spoiler: build write-up
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    Levels 1-4
    For the first 4 levels, you’re just a beguiler. What that means is that you’ve got a boatload of utility and stealth spells, as well as some low-level crowd control staples like color spray and sleep. Your skill kit is focussed on stealth, with the conceal spellcasting trick facilitating the casting of spells without that immediately being noticed.

    Levels 4-8
    This is where the transition to a more gishy build begins. We take a level in Warblade to qualify for jade phoenix mage. Warblade is chosen because of the small intelligence synergy it gets, as that works well with the beguiler, which is an int caster. For maneuvers, sudden leap provides a bit of swift action maneuverability, while claw at the moon and steel wind provide strikes for different situations. We also get a maneuver from the levels in jade phoenix mage, for which we take burning brand. This maneuver isn’t too useful yet, but it’ll come into its own later.
    For stances, punishing stance is a nice offensive stance, while the mystic phoenix stance (which technically isn’t a stance but a class feature) is more defensive, giving extra AC and DR if we expend a spell slot.
    During level 8 we get drafted into a big war against kobolds. As the most efficient way to kill kobolds is to just stab them, the most efficient buff for killing kobolds is haste, so we spend all of the 8th level casting that spell, and the spell alone. This does leave us with a bit of an addiction to the feeling of going fast, but I’m sure that won’t impact the way the build develops.

    Levels 9-15
    This is where swiftblade comes into the build. It does a couple of things for us. Primarily, these levels turn haste into an omni-buff, combining offensive benefits with defensive stuff from miss chances. The spring attack and bounding assault bonus feats aren’t exactly good, but they can be useful on a turn where we want to recharge our maneuvers. Lastly, the bonus damage from swift surge can easily be triggered by sudden leap, allowing for its use in a full round attack. Picking up the impulse boots soulmeld and corresponding chakra bind means we can now leverage our high Reflex save to actually take no damage as well, which is nice.

    Level 17 *sweet spot*
    This level brings a couple of really nice things. First of all, we get Swiftblade’s actual capstone, which allows us to take an extra standard action each turn, which means we can double up on strikes if we want to, or pair a strike with a full-round attack, or cast a spell and a strike, or cast two spells, or whatever else we might feel like. A this level we also get our 6th level spells, most of which are nice, though not exceptional (and imagine casting mislead and then veil in the same round to make everyone look like you while you’ve just gone invisible :P).

    Level 18-20
    In the final levels we get just a bit more of what we already had. The final level of swiftblade gives us the ability to cast short-duration time-stops, which can be useful foe buffing if we get caught off guard, but this ability will likely seem more sue as an utility tool outside of combat. The final two levels of jade phoenix mage gets us another maneuver, ring of fire, which allows us to set an area on fire with eh size determined by how fast we can move, which means we can fill quite a decent area thanks to swiftblade and haste. The damage is decent, but the save will be passed more often than not. Still, AoE damage is one thing the beguiler lacks.
    Finally, we get 7th level spells, which has some nice tools, but nothing that stands out.

    Putting it all together
    One thing to note is tat there are two general play-styles for this build. If you’re in a party, you’re mainly a buffer and debuffer, who can also contribute more directly to combat by being not all that terrible at stabbing people. Out of combat you’ve got a lot of utility spells and you make for a good scout thank to your movement speed allowing you to get out of (and into) trouble very quickly.
    As a solo-build, this character becomes really interesting. You’re not really build for sustained combat, but you’ve got all the tools to make an excellent thief or assassin. The beguiler spell list is tuned to stealth and avoidance, while the combat benefits of swiftblade give you some staying and stabbing power when you attack a target, while being able to do more in less time is very useful as a thief. In this role, the temporary time-stop can also be fantastic for getting out of trouble or grabbing what you want without anyone noticing.
    Imagine, for example, a locked vault surrounded by alert guards. You pre-buff with haste, then subsume a 7th level slot for 2 rounds of doing whatever you want. You then dart in with your haste-enhanced speed, cast knock on the vault to open it and grab what you came for (end of first round). Then, you close the vault and gtfo, leaving the site itself seemingly undisturbed. Total cost: a 2nd and 7th level spell slot. The look on the vault owner’s face when he finds the vault empty and every guard swearing nothing happened: priceless.

    Spoiler: Some numbers
    Show

    all these numbers are for level 20, and with haste and mage armor active.
    HP: 115
    AC: 22
    Fort save: 13
    reflex save: 17
    will save: 12
    to-hit: +25/+20/+15
    Other defenses: 50% miss-chance against attacks and targeted spells, resist cold, electricity and fire 5 (immunity to fire in flame's blessing stance)



    Spoiler: Sources
    Show

    monster manual: Tiefling
    players guide to Faerun: lesser planetouched
    Tome of battle: warblade, jade phoenix mage, martial stance, all manevers and stances
    PHB2: beguiler
    complete scoundrel: conceal spellcasting
    spell compendium: dead end
    magic of incarnum: midnight dodge, shape soulmeld, open least chakra, impulse boots
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    The only person in the past two pages who has known what (s)he has been talking about is Heliomance.
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  23. - Top - End - #113
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    Entry number 2:

    Quote Originally Posted by Fëanáro Swiftfoot
    Fëanáro Swiftfoot
    Chaotic Neutral Fire Elf Wizard 6 / Swiftblade 10 / Abjurant Champion 4

    Starting Abilities: STR 14, DEX 14, CON 14, INT 16, WIS 10, CHA 10
    After Racial Mods: STR 14, DEX 16, CON 12, INT 18, WIS 10, CHA 8
    All lvl increases to INT
    Final Abilities: STR 14, DEX 16, CON 12, INT 23, WIS 10, CHA 8

    Spoiler: Backstory
    Show

    Fëanáro Swiftfoot looked hard at the cavernous room filled with drow. He and the two archers that accompanied him were here to rescue the chieftain's daughter, and it looked like the drow planned to sacrifice her, probably to summon some horrible demon. "Can't let that happen," Fëanáro thought, and cast his favorite spell, letting the sweet rush of haste flow through him, along with a shield spell and a spell of ferocity. As the bowmen started to loose, Fëanáro stopped time, became a Sun Giant, and proceeded to cut his way towards the altar...


    Spoiler: Tables
    Show

    Level Class Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Skills Feats Class Features
    1st Wizard +0 +0 +0 +2 Spot: 2, Listen: 2, Know (Planes): 4, Know (Nature): 4, Know (Religion): 4, Concentration: 3, Spellcraft: 4, Craft (Painting): 1 Guerrilla Scout, Dodge Spells, Focused Specialist Transmuter (banning Evocation, Enchantment, Illusion), Rat Familiar, Fighter Feats
    2nd Wizard +1 +0 +0 +3 Spot: 2, Listen: 2, Know (Planes): 5, Know (Nature): 5, Know (Religion): 5, Concentration: 5, Spellcraft: 5, Craft (Painting): 1
    3rd Wizard +1 +1 +1 +3 Spot: 3, Listen: 3, Know (Planes): 5, Know (Nature): 6, Know (Religion): 6, Concentration: 6, Spellcraft: 6, Craft (Painting): 1 Extend Spell Elven Substitution Level (Double Familiar Bonus)
    4th Wizard +2 +1 +1 +4 Spot: 3, Listen: 3, Know (Planes): 7, Know (Nature): 7, Know (Religion): 7, Concentration: 7, Spellcraft: 7, Craft (Painting): 1
    5th Wizard +2 +1 +1 +4 Spot: 4, Listen: 4, Know (Planes): 7, Know (Nature): 8, Know (Religion): 8, Concentration: 8, Spellcraft: 8, Craft (Painting): 1 Mobility
    6th Wizard +3 +2 +2 +5 Spot: 4, Listen: 4, Know (Planes): 9, Know (Nature): 9, Know (Religion): 9, Concentration: 9, Spellcraft: 9, Craft (Painting): 1 Practiced Spellcaster (Wizard)
    7th Swiftblade +4 +2 +4 +7 Spot: 5, Listen: 5, Tumble: 6, Know (Planes): 9, Know (Nature): 9, Know (Religion): 9, Concentration: 9, Spellcraft: 9, Craft (Painting): 1 Spring Attack Swift Surge
    8th Swiftblade +5 +2 +5 +8 Spot: 8, Listen: 8, Tumble: 9, Know (Planes): 9, Know (Nature): 9, Know (Religion): 9, Concentration: 9, Spellcraft: 9, Craft (Painting): 1 Blurred Alacrity
    9th Swiftblade +6 +3 +5 +8 Spot: 11, Listen: 11, Tumble: 12, Know (Planes): 9, Know (Nature): 9, Know (Religion): 9, Concentration: 9, Spellcraft: 9, Craft (Painting): 1 Minor Shapeshift Sudden Casting
    10th Swiftblade +7 +3 +6 +9 Spot: 13, Listen: 13, Tumble: 13, Know (Arcana): 4, Know (Planes): 9, Know (Nature): 9, Know (Religion): 9, Concentration: 9, Spellcraft: 9, Craft (Painting): 1 Swift Surge, Arcane Reflexes
    11th Swiftblade +8 +3 +6 +9 Spot: 14, Listen: 14, Tumble: 14, Know (Arcana): 10, Know (Planes): 9, Know (Nature): 9, Know (Religion): 9, Concentration: 9, Spellcraft: 9, Craft (Painting): 1 Evasive Celerity
    12th Swiftblade +9 +4 +7 +10 Spot: 15, Listen: 15, Tumble: 15, Know (Arcana): 14, Know (Planes): 9, Know (Nature): 9, Know (Religion): 9, Concentration: 10, Spellcraft: 10, Craft (Painting): 1 Elusive Target Fortified Hustle
    13th Swiftblade +10 +4 +7 +10 Spot: 16, Listen: 16, Tumble: 15, Know (Arcana): 15, Know (Planes): 11CC, Know (Nature): 9, Know (Religion): 9, Concentration: 11, Spellcraft: 11, Craft (Painting): 1 Bounding Assault Swift Surge
    14th Swiftblade +11 +4 +8 +11 Spot: 17, Listen: 17, Tumble: 15, Know (Arcana): 16, Know (Planes): 13CC, Know (Nature): 9, Know (Religion): 9, Concentration: 12, Spellcraft: 12, Craft (Painting): 1 Diligent Rapidity
    15th Swiftblade +12 +5 +8 +11 Spot: 18, Listen: 18, Tumble: 15, Know (Arcana): 17, Know (Planes): 15CC, Know (Nature): 9, Know (Religion): 9, Concentration: 13, Spellcraft: 13, Craft (Painting): 1 Combat Casting Perpetual Option
    16th Swiftblade +13 +5 +9 +12 Spot: 19, Listen: 19, Tumble: 15, Know (Arcana): 19, Know (Planes): 17CC, Know (Nature): 9, Know (Religion): 9, Concentration: 14, Spellcraft: 14, Craft (Painting): 1 Innervated Speed, Swift Surge
    17th Abjurant Champion +14 +5 +9 +14 Spot: 20, Listen: 20, Tumble: 15, Know (Arcana): 20, Know (Planes): 19CC, Know (Nature): 9, Know (Religion): 9, Concentration: 14, Spellcraft: 15, Craft (Painting): 1 Abjurant Armor, Extended Abjuration
    18th Abjurant Champion +15 +5 +9 +15 Spot: 21, Listen: 21, Tumble: 15, Know (Arcana): 21, Know (Planes): 21CC, Know (Nature): 9, Know (Religion): 9, Concentration: 14, Spellcraft: 16, Craft (Painting): 1 Persistent Spell Swift Abjuration
    19th Abjurant Champion +16 +6 +10 +15 Spot: 22, Listen: 22, Tumble: 15, Know (Arcana): 22, Know (Planes): 22CC, Know (Nature): 9, Know (Religion): 9, Concentration: 14, Spellcraft: 19, Craft (Painting): 1
    20th Abjurant Champion +17 +6 +10 +16 Spot: 23, Listen: 23, Tumble: 15, Know (Arcana): 23, Know (Planes): 23CC, Know (Nature): 9, Know (Religion): 9, Concentration: 14, Spellcraft: 22, Craft (Painting): 1 Arcane Boost
    CC: Purchased cross-class

    Spells per Day (Only base + focused specialist)
    Level 0lvl 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
    1st 3 0 + 3 - - - - - - - -
    2nd 4 1 + 3 - - - - - - - -
    3rd 4 1 + 3 0 + 3 - - - - - - -
    4th 4 2 + 3 1 + 3 - - - - - - -
    5th 4 2 + 3 1 + 3 0 + 3 - - - - - -
    6th 4 2 + 3 2 + 3 1 + 3 - - - - - -
    7th 4 2 + 3 2 + 3 1 + 3 - - - - - -
    8th 4 3 + 3 2 + 3 1 + 3 0 + 3 - - - - -
    9th 4 3 + 3 2 + 3 2 + 3 1 + 3 - - - - -
    10th 4 3 + 3 2 + 3 2 + 3 1 + 3 - - - - -
    11th 4 3 + 3 3 + 3 2 + 3 1 + 3 0 + 3 - - - -
    12th 4 3 + 3 3 + 3 2 + 3 2 + 3 1 + 3 - - - -
    13th 4 3 + 3 3 + 3 2 + 3 2 + 3 1 + 3 - - - -
    14th 4 3 + 3 3 + 3 3 + 3 2 + 3 1 + 3 0 + 3 - - -
    15th 4 3 + 3 3 + 3 3 + 3 2 + 3 2 + 3 1 + 3 - - -
    16th 4 3 + 3 3 + 3 3 + 3 2 + 3 2 + 3 1 + 3 - - -
    17th 4 3 + 3 3 + 3 3 + 3 3 + 3 2 + 3 1 + 3 0 + 3 - -
    18th 4 3 + 3 3 + 3 3 + 3 3 + 3 2 + 3 2 + 3 1 + 3 - -
    19th 4 3 + 3 3 + 3 3 + 3 3 + 3 3 + 3 2 + 3 1 + 3 0 + 3 -
    20th 4 3 + 3 3 + 3 3 + 3 3 + 3 3 + 3 2 + 3 2 + 3 1 + 3 -


    Spoiler: Breakdowns
    Show

    Spoiler: Level 5
    Show

    At this level, you're pretty much a standard wizard, though with some interesting feat choices. Glitterdust and haste are staples here. The only thing that really stands out as different is the choice to ban illusion instead of necromancy. While we lose some powerhouse spells (mirror image, bladeweave, shadow conjuration), staples like blur and displacement are covered by the blurred alacrity feature of swiftblade. Even the loss of mirror image isn't huge, considering evasive celerity will help with targeted spells. What we gain with necromancy is damage and temp hit points. Spells like blade of blood, vampiric touch, and false life help provide damage and shore up those d4 hit dice and low con. Speaking of low con, your fortitude save is better than it looks, since you'll get +4 from elven generalist and good ol' Rattata (your familiar).

    Some other spells to include in your spell book are whirling blade, the beloved wraithstrike, and burning rage. All are transmutation, and in burning rage's case, it's all upside for Fëanáro, since as a fire elf he has fire resist 5. While the standard action is a bit painful, if you have a good way to quicken it, burning rage is offense and defense in one, and it's at a level where that DR/magic is useful. All of the aforementioned spells will allow you to gish it up for a round or two, but you're still probably better staying out of melee range. Another deadly combo is blade of blood and vampiric touch. Casting the former and saccing 5 hp means your vampirc touch will do 5d6 of damage and give you that much in temp hp, which should be quite a lot for level 5.


    Spoiler: Level 10
    Show

    You can finally start to mix it up in melee! You're likely to go first in combat thanks to arcane reflexes, you've got many many sources of temporary hit points, the ability to cast haste as a swift action, and enough 3rd and 4th level slots to see you through fights. Blurred Alacrity means every casting of haste also gives you 40% concealment that can't be negated by see invis or true seeing, while spells like sonic weapon (extended) and ferocity of sanguine rage provide respectable damage boosts. If you can move and full attack, you've got three attacks and get an extra d6 to all damage! You can likely afford a +2 weapon, so something like a +1 bloodstone longsword is an excellent choice.


    Spoiler: Level 16
    Show

    THIS. This is the sweet spot. You can stop time - as a swift action! If you have haste up and running before you do, you can take 2 standard actions for each round! That's an extra spell to be cast! One of the most common complaints about gishes is that it's hard to balance buff up times with actually killing the enemy. At this level, you have the ability to do both, and do it extremely effectively. In the space of one round, plus the swift action of the next round, you can cast haste + 4 or 5 other spells. Shield, Draconic Polymorph (into a Firbolg or Sun Giant), Burning Rage, and Ferocity of Sanguine Rage means you've got a strength of 44, +10 bonus damage (from the rages), +1 to attack, +15ish (shield and natural armor) to ac, and an extra 2d6 non-precision damage if you move 20ft. Add sizing to your weapon and go to town! Plus you're incredibly mobile: you can spring attack twice, and with bounding assault in the mix, you get 4 attacks, same as you would with full attacking. Except these attacks are at your very respectable BAB and BAB - 5, instead BAB/-5/-10/-15. You also have freedom of movement and a 50% miss chance vs damn near everything.


    Spoiler: Level 20
    Show

    The abjurant champion levels add a bit of defense, that and persist spell add even more action economy, and you can boost saves if need be with arcane boost. Plus you get a d10 hit dice, which is a welcome change of pace. Level 7 spells offer up some nice spells for offense - bite of the werebear and waves of exhaustion are fun! - but for the most part these levels are mostly all about shoring up your defense a bit.


    On Buffing: While it is important to buff yourself to deal adequate damage, don't forget the cardinal rule of buffing - every round you buff is a round your enemies have free reign to act appropriately (at least until level 16). I've mentioned good buff spells here that I think are worth the action it takes to cast them, and while I didn't mention it, Fëanáro can act like a normal wizard if he has to. He'll still be quite good too, since all his level bumps go to INT.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kalirren View Post
    The only person in the past two pages who has known what (s)he has been talking about is Heliomance.
    Quote Originally Posted by golentan View Post
    I just don't want to have long romantic conversations or any sort of drama with my computer, okay? It knows what kind of porn I watch. I don't want to mess that up by allowing it to judge any of my choices in romance.

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  24. - Top - End - #114
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    Entry number 3:

    Quote Originally Posted by The Whispering Wind
    The Whispering Wind
    TN Raptoran Beguiler 7/Swiftblade 10/Unseen Seer 3

    Spoiler: The Story of the Wind
    Show


    The trees whipped back and forth with the breezes outside, and combined with the whistle of the wind itself it almost sounded like someone talking, from a far, far distance.

    The little girl was alone with her grandmother tonight, but that was fine now, because her grandmother knew many things. She could ask, and perhaps she would get an answer. “What is the wind saying?”

    “You are not the first little girl to ask that question,” her Grandmother replied. “Her name was Whispering Wind.”

    “Is that the name of the wind?” Her grandmother had taught her that true names were important things.

    She did not answer this question though, and instead she began a story. That was fine, because a story was even better than an answer. “Whispering Wind was born in this village long ago, but that turned out to be a very big name for a little, quiet girl, so everyone called her Whisper. Whisper was even more curious about the wind than you, for that is the way of people about their names.

    “Whisper would listen to the song of the wind every day, and she tried her hardest to tease out little meanings from its tiny voice. At first, she couldn’t make out anything at all, but she tried and she tried. She strained her ears listening, and she also strained her muscles learning to be very still, making no noise of her own. And still, she could not hear most words of the wind, but the few she did were worth much, and from them she learned many things.

    “Some would be content with such prizes, but not Whisper. She thought perhaps she could not hear the wind because it was so fast and she was not, so she worked hard to fly fast every day. She tried and tried, and eventually she was the fastest flier in the village, but this was not enough for her, because still, she could not hear the wind. But one day, she prized another secret from it, and with that she became much faster indeed.

    “This secret was a true one, not just a small one, and so its use could lead to many others. Whisper learned to be quiet however she moved. Whisper learned how the wind slips through hand and trap, never to be caught. But most of all, Whisper learned to be faster and faster, because she still needed to understand the wind. She became so fast she bent time itself, and oft returned to the village the night before she had left. But no matter how fast she went, or how quiet she was, she still could not hear enough. She started to think the wind was merely playing with her, and didn’t want her to hear the words it said.

    “Whisper was so fast now that when she moved she was barely a blur to the villagers, and when they told her this it gave her another idea. None could see the wind, and she was already partway there, so perhaps if she could also keep herself unseen, the wind would finally tell her all its secrets. So she learned to be unseen, and as with everything she worked for, she learned it very, very, well. And the villagers never saw her again.”

    After this her grandmother stopped, silent, and the little girl was dismayed. “But what happened next? Did Whisper finally get to talk to the wind?”

    Her grandmother laughed then, but not cruelly, and she was quick to answer afterwards. “Oh my little girl, don’t you see? I told you when the story began, Whisper was the Whispering Wind all along.”


    Spoiler: Race, Stats, & HP
    Show

    Being a Raptoran, Whisper has no Stat Adjustments, but does eventually receive a Flight Speed and has low-light vision. Also note that Whisper has an important racial bonus of +2 to Spot, as well as less important ones of +10 to Jump and +2 to Climb.

    Level 01: STR 16 | DEX 14 | CON 14 | INT 16 | WIS 08 | CHA 08
    Level 20: STR 16 | DEX 14 | CON 14 | INT 21 | WIS 08 | CHA 08

    Mean Hit Points: 6 + 16d6 + 3d4 + (2*20) = 6 + 16*3.5 + 3*2.5 + 40 = 109


    Spoiler: Build Table
    Show

    Level Class Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Skills Feats Class Features
    1st Beguiler 1 +1 +0 +0 +2 Concentration 4, Disable Device 4, Hide 4, Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 4, Move Silently 4, Search 4, Spellcraft 3, Spot 4, Tumble 4 Dodge Armored Mage, Trapfinding
    2nd Beguiler 2 +1 +0 +0 +3 Concentration 5 (+1), Disable Device 5 (+1), Hide 5 (+1), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 5 (+1), Move Silently 5 (+1), Search 5 (+1), Spellcraft 4 (+1), Spot 5 (+1), Tumble 5 (+1) - Cloaked Casting (+1 DC), Surprise Casting
    3rd Beguiler 3 +2 +1 +1 +3 Concentration 6 (+1), Disable Device 6 (+1), Hide 6 (+1), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 6 (+1), Move Silently 6 (+1), Search 6 (+1), Spellcraft 5 (+1), Spot 6 (+1), Tumble 6 (+1) Mobility Advanced Learning (Shock and Awe)
    4th Beguiler 4 +2 +1 +1 +4 Concentration 7 (+1), Disable Device 7 (+1), Hide 7 (+1), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 7 (+1), Move Silently 7 (+1), Search 7 (+1), Spellcraft 6 (+1), Spot 7 (+1), Tumble 7 (+1) - -
    5th Beguiler 5 +3 +1 +1 +4 Concentration 8 (+1), Disable Device 8 (+1), Hide 8 (+1), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 8 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 8 (+1), Sense Motive 2 (+2), Spellcraft 6, Spot 8 (+1), Tumble 8 (+1) Silent Spell -
    6th Beguiler 6 +3 +2 +2 +5 Concentration 9 (+1), Disable Device 9 (+1), Hide 9 (+1), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 9 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 9 (+1), Sense Motive 4 (+2), Spellcraft 6, Spot 9 (+1), Tumble 9 (+1) Air Heritage Surprise Casting (Move Action)
    7th Swiftblade 1 +4 +2 +4 +7 Concentration 10 (+1), Disable Device 9, Hide 10 (+1*), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 10 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 10 (+1*), Sense Motive 4, Spellcraft 6, Spot 10 (+1), Tumble 9 Spring Attack Swift Surge +1/+0 ft
    8th Swiftblade 2 +5 +2 +5 +8 Concentration 11 (+1), Disable Device 9, Hide 11 (+1*), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 11 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 11 (+1*), Sense Motive 4, Spellcraft 6, Spot 11 (+1), Tumble 10 (+1) - Blurred Alacrity
    9th Swiftblade 3 +6 +3 +5 +8 Concentration 12 (+1), Disable Device 9, Hide 12 (+1*), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 12 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 12 (+1*), Sense Motive 4, Spellcraft 6, Spot 12 (+1), Tumble 11 (+1) Power Attack Sudden Casting
    10th Swiftblade 4 +7 +3 +6 +9 Concentration 13 (+1), Disable Device 9, Hide 13 (+1*), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 13 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 13 (+1*), Sense Motive 4, Spellcraft 6, Spot 13 (+1), Tumble 12 (+1) - Arcane Reflexes, Swift Surge +1/+10 ft
    11th Swiftblade 5 +8 +3 +6 +9 Concentration 14 (+1), Disable Device 9, Hide 14 (+1*), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 14 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 14 (+1*), Sense Motive 4, Spellcraft 6, Spot 14 (+1), Tumble 13 (+1) - Evasive Celerity
    12th Swiftblade 6 +9 +4 +7 +10 Concentration 15 (+1), Disable Device 9, Hide 15 (+1*), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 15 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 15 (+1*), Sense Motive 4, Spellcraft 6, Spot 15 (+1), Tumble 14 (+1) Arcane Strike Fortified Hustle
    13th Swiftblade 7 +10 +4 +7 +10 Concentration 16 (+1), Disable Device 9, Hide 16 (+1*), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 16 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 16 (+1*), Sense Motive 4, Spellcraft 6, Spot 16 (+1), Tumble 15 (+1) Bounding Assault Swift Surge +2/+10 ft
    14th Swiftblade 8 +11 +4 +8 +11 Concentration 17 (+1), Disable Device 9, Hide 17 (+1*), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 17 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 17 (+1*), Sense Motive 4, Spellcraft 6, Spot 17 (+1), Tumble 16 (+1) - Diligent Rapidity
    15th Swiftblade 9 +12 +5 +8 +11 Concentration 18 (+1), Disable Device 9, Hide 18 (+1*), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 18 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 18 (+1*), Sense Motive 4, Spellcraft 6, Spot 18 (+1), Tumble 17 (+1) Darkstalker Perpetual Options
    16th Swiftblade 10 +13 +5 +9 +12 Concentration 19 (+1), Disable Device 9, Hide 19 (+1*), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Listen 19 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 19 (+1*), Sense Motive 4, Spellcraft 6, Spot 19 (+1), Tumble 19 (+2) - Innervated Speed, Swift Surge +2/+20 ft
    17th Unseen Seer 1 +13 +5 +9 +14 Concentration 20 (+1), Disable Device 11 (+2*), Hide 20 (+1), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Knowledge (Nature) 1 (+1), Knowledge (The Planes) 1 (+1), Listen 20 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 20 (+1), Sense Motive 4, Spellcraft 6, Spot 20 (+1), Tumble 19 - -
    18th Unseen Seer 2 +14 +5 +9 +15 Concentration 21 (+1), Disable Device 14 (+3*), Hide 21 (+1), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Knowledge (Nature) 1, Knowledge (The Planes) 1, Listen 21 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 21 (+1), Sense Motive 4, Spellcraft 6, Spot 21 (+1), Tumble 19 Versatile Spellcaster Advanced Learning (Find the Gap)
    19th Unseen Seer 3 +15 +6 +10 +15 Concentration 22 (+1), Disable Device 17 (+3*), Hide 22 (+1), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Knowledge (Nature) 1, Knowledge (The Planes) 1, Listen 22 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 22 (+1), Sense Motive 4, Spellcraft 6, Spot 22 (+1), Tumble 19 - Divination Spell Power +1
    20th Beguiler 7 +15 +6 +10 +15 Concentration 23 (+1), Disable Device 23 (+6), Hide 23 (+1), Knowledge (Arcana) 1, Knowledge (Nature) 1, Knowledge (The Planes) 1, Listen 23 (+1), Move Silently 7, Search 23 (+1), Sense Motive 4, Spellcraft 6, Spot 23 (+1), Tumble 19 - Advanced Learning (Superior Invisibility)


    Spoiler: Spells per Day
    Show

    Level 0lvl 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
    1st 5 3 - - - - - - - -
    2nd 6 4 - - - - - - - -
    3rd 6 5 - - - - - - - -
    4th 6 6 3 - - - - - - -
    5th 6 6 4 - - - - - - -
    6th 6 6 5 3 - - - - - -
    7th 6 6 5 3 - - - - - -
    8th 6 6 6 4 - - - - - -
    9th 6 6 6 5 3 - - - - -
    10th 6 6 6 5 3 - - - - -
    11th 6 6 6 6 4 - - - - -
    12th 6 6 6 6 5 3 - - - -
    13th 6 6 6 6 5 3 - - - -
    14th 6 6 6 6 6 4 - - - -
    15th 6 6 6 6 6 5 3 - - -
    16th 6 6 6 6 6 5 3 - - -
    17th 6 6 6 6 6 6 4 - - -
    18th 6 6 6 6 6 6 5 3 - -
    19th 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 4 - -
    20th 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 5 3 -


    Spoiler: Overview
    Show

    Whisper complements the Beguiler’s strong suite of mind affecting and battlefield control effects with direct melee offense enabled by the Swiftblade. While one of these attack modes can often be foiled by the wrong enemy, it is much rarer that the same enemy will be able to deal with both, and so Whisper will rarely be stymied in combat. In addition to this, both packages complement each other; the Swiftblade’s surplus of time stop actions lends itself to using Beguiler spells to lay down battlefield control effects or to self buff.

    On defense, the synergy between high tactical speed and stealth capabilities can make engaging this character effectively almost impossible, and the miss chance based defensive bonuses a Swiftblade gets help to regularly negate attacks even when the opposition does manage to engage. Spells from the Beguiler such as Nondetection, Shadow Walk, and eventually Mind Blank and Discern Location provide strategic supremacy on this front to complement tactical supremacy.

    Even in terms of building the character, Beguiler is elegant. It naturally has some martial weapon proficiencies to ease qualification, and Haste is automatically a Beguiler spell known.


    Level by Level and Tactics

    Spoiler: Levels 1-4
    Show

    At first, Whisper is a normal Beguiler casting low level Beguiler spells, and her melee abilities complement them well. A big reaching longspear and reasonable strength allows for some consistent damage when spells are run out or inappropriate without fully engaging. Dodge complements the light armor a Beguiler can wear, giving Whisper enough AC to avoid folding too easily to an attack. Mobility can help Whisper skirmish effectively as well, avoiding being stuck on the front line with her reach weapon. Trapfinding, high ranks in a variety of key skills, and both the Invisibility and Silence spells let Whisper function in the normal utility role of the Rogue. Shock and Awe as an advanced learning choice synergizes well with her stealth use and remains relevant for her entire career.


    Spoiler: Levels 5-6
    Show

    Whisper gains flight for short intervals at level 5 and the Air Heritage feat at level 6 increases her flight speed to 70 feet. With an additional 30 foot speed boost from casting Haste, Whisper can truly race the wind at 100 foot speed. Using reach with the longspear, it’s more practical to full attack and get the extra swing from haste despite the relative frailty of a Beguiler, and if things get too hairy Whisper can disengage easily.


    Spoiler: Levels 7-8
    Show

    Swiftblade brings a lot of immediate benefits. Spring Attack continues to emphasize the skirmishing theme, letting Whisper strike like the wind in cases where remaining close to the front line is inadvisable, and sometimes even kiting enemies from the air or darting out of and back into hiding. Swift Surge synergizes with using it and bolsters some of Whisper’s mediocre melee numbers. Blurred Alacrity allows for an extra defensive filter without the need for spell slot expenditure. The other 3rd level Beguiler spells are available now too, and while the list is lacking in direct options, many of them do excel in pinning enemies down (Hold Person, Legion of Sentinels, and Slow especially.) There are also a variety of utility options, and Zone of Silence in particular is ridiculous as a stealth aid (so ridiculous that the Move Silently skill is allowed to decay into a stub.) Overall, Whisper’s damage dealing might not be great right now, but she can play for the long game and wear the enemy out, with numerous ways to avoid taking damage herself.


    Spoiler: Levels 9-11
    Show

    The inclusion of Power Attack here puts some life back into Whisper's melee abilities, and the quick Hastes from Sudden Casting let her get into the swing of that sort of combat without a buff round now. Additionally, the new ability to fly indefinitely (and with an extra 10 feet of speed now) can make the hasted full attacks safer in some circumstances, using the reach of the longspear from the air. Dive Attacks (which provide an overall x4 Power Attack multiplier) are viable now too, and can be done from extreme heights, possibly even with surprise (Arcane Reflexes combines nicely with Shock and Awe to almost ensure you act before the opponent in the round after surprise.)

    Spring Attack (which will activate Swift Surge bonus damage) continues to do a good job of using air distance as an extra defensive filter, in combination with the growing miss chances provided by Blurred Alacrity and Evasive Celerity. And finally, when melee isn’t going to work too well at all, Whisper now has 4th level Beguiler spells, which include both good options for big bruisers like Confusion and hard control like Solid Fog.


    Spoiler: Levels 12-14
    Show

    At level 12 Whisper takes Arcane Strike, allowing her to both cancel out the accuracy issues of Power Attack while adding more bonus damage, and the new Bounding Assault upgrade to Spring Attack synergizes well with Arcane Strike affecting all attacks in a round. Fifth level Beguiler spells introduce more devastating Will targeting options for enemies with high AC, and Diligent Rapidity lets Whisper move easily through the Solid Fog she spreads around the field.


    Spoiler: Level 15
    Show

    Perpetual Options is of course very strong, and Whisper can use it responsibly, preserving her endurance. She can spend one action per round to cast a spell and the rest of her actions on melee activities. Even if using Arcane Strikes, Whisper can keep it reasonable with 1st and 2nd level slots that weren’t going to do much else anyway.

    Darkstalker is a necessary tool for any build that cares about stealth at this level, and the 6th level Beguiler Spells available now offer utility and strategic options such as True Seeing, Greater Dispel, and Shadow Walk.


    Spoiler: Level 16
    Show

    Innervated Speed is the other real power class ability Swiftblade gets, and Whisper has strong options to use with it right from the time she gets it. The Beguiler spell list is full of the two best types of spells to use inside a time stop: field control like Solid Fog, and self buffs like Greater Invisibility. Casting Innervated Haste as a swift action with Sudden Casting and then using some of these options (remember, you will get an extra standard action per round as long as you have a real Haste on yourself too) is an expensive but effective way to nova in an important battle. Less obviously, but more cheaply, just using a 6th level Haste to RUN for a full round as a swift action is very good. With her speed now increased to 120 feet with haste on, that’s 480 feet of distance which flies and isn’t subject to opportunity attacks, and in addition to that, you still have your extra standard too! It’s like a Quickened Dimension Door as a 6th level spell that also gives you an additional (time stop limited) action on top.


    Spoiler: Levels 17-19
    Show

    Whisper becomes an Unseen Seer now, which gives her full progression of spells along with reasonable BaB and skills, making for a good base without anything serious in the way of prereqs. Most of the rest of the class isn’t that valuable (the Damage Bonus technically can’t count for Swift Surge, though some lenient DMs may let this RAW issue slide), but Unseen Seer has one gem that justifies the trip: Advanced Learning, which we can use to pick up the rarely seen spell Find the Gap. A cheap to cast 3rd level spell, Find the Gap is another great buff spell to use inside of time stop, and an excellent accuracy enabler to help make Power Attack good for a whole battle, and to make those Dive Attacks really deadly.

    Versatile Spellcaster is a feat choice good for really grinding the most high level slots Whisper can when she needs to, and another way to efficiently use low level ones. Innervated Haste in particular is very demanding of high level slots for efficiency (using two 6ths as a 7th to get two rounds instead of one is just strictly better, if you think about it), and her 8th level spell options are about to be outrageously good.


    Spoiler: Level 20
    Show

    The other reason Whisper took 3 levels of Unseen Seer is that she had to delay Beguiler 7 until level 20, so that she can take an 8th level spell for her advanced learning. While the Beguiler 8ths are amazing strategic options (Moment of Prescience is even there too), the perfect complement to Whisper’s setup is actually Superior Invisibility. Critically, the only common counters to Superior Invisibility are True Seeing and Mindsight, but True Seeing only has a range of 120 feet, and Mindsight is often 100! Since Whisper’s speed is 120 feet already, and Whisper has a surplus of both extra actions (especially movement in time stop) combined with Bounding Assault, it’s easy to spend a whole battle far outside this range, forcing the enemy to make spot checks against hide+20 at ridiculous range penalties to find a hiding Whisper through the invisibility. This is obviously a brutal defensive filtering effect, and combined with the anti-divination capability of Nondetection or even Mind Blank it can make for a brutally unfair fight. You can't catch the wind.


    Spoiler: Sources
    Show

    Haste Personified Web Enhancement: Swiftblade
    PHB II: Beguiler class and some Beguiler spells, Bounding Assault feat
    Complete Mage: Unseen Seer prestige class
    Races of the Wild: Raptoran race
    Planar Handbook: Air Heritage feat
    Complete Warrior: Arcane Strike feat
    Lords of Madness: Darkstalker feat
    Races of the Dragon: Versatile Spellcaster feat
    Spell Compendium: Shock and Awe, Find the Gap, Superior Invisibility spells
    SRD: All other feats and spells
    Quotebox
    Spoiler
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kalirren View Post
    The only person in the past two pages who has known what (s)he has been talking about is Heliomance.
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    I just don't want to have long romantic conversations or any sort of drama with my computer, okay? It knows what kind of porn I watch. I don't want to mess that up by allowing it to judge any of my choices in romance.

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  25. - Top - End - #115
    Titan in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Entry number 4:

    Quote Originally Posted by Socko, the Wind Sock
    Name: Socko, the Wind Sock



    Spoiler: Premise
    Show
    This build uses the Phaerimm's ability to gain sorcerer spellcasting for each character level it takes. However, none of what it does is functionally dependent on it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Phaerimm
    Spells: A Phaerimm casts arcane spells as a sorcerer (caster level equals phaerimm's character level). Phaerimms use their sorcerer spells as if they were spell-like abilities, so they require no verbal, somatic, or material components.
    [...]
    Phaerimm Characters
    A phaerimm's favored class is sorcerer. Its sorcerer levels stack with its base spellcasting ability for the purpose of determining spells known, spells per day, and other effects dependent on caster level.
    If you do not agree with this as a judge or find that it would warrant too many penalties, feel free to evaluate it as a build using any race with natural weapons and no LA. It will function exactly the same with the exception that it will get access to spells later and never be able to cast higher than 8th level spells (by foregoing the levels in Paladin of Tyranny, Arcane Duelist, and Warblade)--which is all it needs for its highest level tricks (Greater Arcane Fusion and/or Greater Bestow Curse).

    A second thing to consider is the feat and class feature choices. Weapon Finesse and Metamagic Specialist are both on the table if using Limited Wish for Psychic Reformation is allowed. The build presented has feats and class features ideal for the final build, but would traditionally take the aforementioned feat and class feature in the early levels if using Limited Wish in such a manner was allowed later on. Weapon Finesse can also be kept for good if magical location options are on the table. For example, visiting a Metamagic Storm allows us to replace Extend Spell with Weapon Finesse and swap the order in which we take it with Poison Spell.


    Spoiler: Backstory
    Show
    Socko's natural enemy is the chaotic good dreamcatcher or lucky rabbit's foot. As a wind sock, all such charms are his sworn enemy. His goal? To move like the wind and spread disastrous curses among the masses in order to better serve his dark lord. Socko is also disappointed that his chef ran out of characters and thus had to remove the backstory from their entry.


    Spoiler: Details
    Show

    Hatchling Phaerimm +2 LA
    -6 Str, +6 Dex, +2 Wis, +2 Cha

    2 claws (1d2 each) + [any grafts]
    Spells
    Detect Magic (Sp) at will
    Flight (Ex)
    Immunities (Ex) polymorph and petrification
    Spell Resistance (Ex) 11

    Unseelie Fey +0 LA
    -2 Str, +2 Dex, -2 Con, +2 Cha

    Interestingly, the only fleshed out description of the abilities we roll for allows the option of selecting one or rolling randomly:
    Quote Originally Posted by Unseelie Fey
    Select the wings or roll randomly
    Assuming this is precedence, we could choose for each of them. Either way, it doesn't matter as a Phaerimm has alternative means of detection and the build does not rely on ranged combat.

    Season's Power: Winter Chill (Su): Living, nonfey creatures within 5ft of her take a morale penalty on saves equal to the windsock's Cha bonus (minimum 1).

    Winter's Chill is the reason we took this template. Nothing else is really that important.

    DR None - 15/cold iron
    Iron Vulnerabilitiy

    32 Point Buy
    Str 14 -8 = 6
    Dex 10 +8 = 18
    Con 14 -2 = 12
    Int 10
    Wis 8 +2 = 10
    Cha 18 +4 = 22 (all points from levels here)

    Levels
    Hatchling Phaerimm +2 LA / Sorcerer 1 / Paladin of Tyranny 3 / Sorcerer +1 / Swiftblade 10 / Arcane Duelist 2 / Warblade 1


    Spoiler: Build
    Show

    Level Class Base Attack Bonus Base Fort Save Base Ref Save Base Will Save Skills Feats Class Features
    1st LA +1 - - - - - - -
    2nd LA +2 - - - - - - -
    3rd Sorcerer 1 +0 +0 +0 +2 Concentration 4, Spellcraft 4 Expeditious Dodge Familiar
    4th Paladin of Tyranny 1 +1 +2 +0 +2 Concentration 5, Knowledge (religion) 1 - Aura of evil, detect good, smite good 1/day
    5th Paladin of Tyranny 2 +2 +3 +0 +2 Concentration 6, Perform (any) 0.5 Mobility Divine grace, deadly touch
    6th Paladin of Tyranny 3 +3 +3 +1 +3 Concentration 7, Perform (any) 1 - Aura of despair, divine health
    7th Sorcerer 2 +4 +3 +1 +4 Spellcraft 6 - -
    8th Swiftblade 1 +5 +3 +3 +6 Concentration 9, Tumble 2 Poison Spell Spring Attack, swift surge +1/+0 ft.
    9th Swiftblade 2 +6 +3 +4 +7 Concentration 10, Tumble 5 - Blurred alacrity
    10th Swiftblade 3 +7 +4 +4 +7 Concentration 11, Tumble 8 - Sudden casting
    11th Swiftblade 4 +8 +4 +5 +8 Concentration 12, Tumble 10, Knowledge (arcana) 1 Extend Spell Arcane reflexes, swift surge +1/+10 ft.
    12th Swiftblade 5 +9 +4 +5 +8 Concentration 13, Tumble 12, Use Magic Device 0.5 - Evasive celerity
    13th Swiftblade 6 +10 +5 +6 +9 Concentration 14, Tumble 14, Use Magic Device 1 - Fortified hustle
    14th Swiftblade 7 +11 +5 +6 +9 Concentration 15, Tumble 15, Craft (alchemy) 1 Twin Spell Bounding Assault, swift surge +2/+10 ft.
    15th Swiftblade 8 +12 +5 +7 +10 Concentration 16, Perform (any) 2.5 - Diligent rapidity
    16th Swiftblade 9 +13 +6 +7 +10 Concentration 17, Perform (any) 4 - Perpetual options
    17th Swiftblade 10 +14 +6 +8 +11 Concentration 18, Perform (any) 5, Tumble 16 Rapid Metamagic Innervated speed, swift surge +2/+20 ft.
    18th Arcane Duelist 1 +14 +6 +10 +13 Concentration 19, Tumble 18 - Chosen weapon, Enchant chosen weapon +1
    19th Arcane Duelist 2 +15 +6 +11 +14 Concentration 20, Spellcraft 8 - Apparent defense
    20th Warblade 1 +16 +8 +11 +14 Concentration 21, Tumble 21 Practical Metamagic (Twin Spell) with appropriate ritual or spells to grant subtype OR reallocate skillpoints into Knowledge (arcana) and take Arcane Thesis (Bestow Curse) OR Residual Magic Battle clarity (Reflex saves), weapon aptitude


    Spoiler: Spells
    Show
    Key Spells
    1st - Spell Flower
    2nd -
    3rd - Haste, Girallon's Blessing
    4th - Bestow Curse
    5th - Arcane Fusion, Trait Removal
    6th -
    7th - Limited Wish, Ability Rip
    8th - Greater Arcane Fusion, Greater Bestow Curse
    9th -
    (see part 2 for spell chart)


    Spoiler: Breakdown
    Show

    Spoiler: Level 1-5
    Show
    Your career starts as a sorcerer wearing the heaviest armor you can bear as soon as you take your first paladin level--which is why we invested so many points on strength. Your physical ability scores won't matter by the time you're able to cast 5th level spells. At ECL 5 you get Charisma to saves, giving you good saves in addition to good AC. However, you still don't have the greatest hit points due to being 2 levels behind, so you'll want to rely on area control spells early to help aid your ability to draw attention to yourself. Getting close to enemies can be an important part of our playstyle if we want to affect them with our Winter Chill save reducing aura, which is currently reducing their saving throws by 6. The Paladin of Tyranny levels allow us to reduce their saves by another 2, for a total of -8. This allows us to cast extremely debiliting spells while close to nearly guarantee a fail. Favorites like Charm, Color Spray, Grease, Glitterdust, etc. come to mind. We gain access to Haste just before taking our first Swiftblade level, though it isn't much use until we get our second Swiftblade level.


    Spoiler: Level 6-10
    Show
    Lots happens here, and this could arguably be the beginning of the "Sweet Spot" for the build as soon as you are able to cast Bestow Curse (see the Bestow Curse spoiler for details).

    At our second Swiftblade level Haste grants us a miss chance, which we use in tandem with Bestow Curse's ability to prevent enemies from acting 50% of the time. Since Bestow Curse is not a miss chance, it stacks with Haste in all the right ways. If we were able to use the curses from Secrets of Xen'drik, we've also cursed ourselves (or paid someone to curse us) with the aura of menace, which makes hostile enemies attack us in preference to any other members of our party. This will effectively be our party role from here on out. Gaining and applying "miss" chances and making enemies attack us or drawing fire for our allies so that they can finish the job and/or act freely.

    As a touch spell, we're able to hold the charge on Bestow Curse once cast. We can even hold multiple curses at the same time if we're able to get Spell Flower up. This allows us to enter any combat with at least one Bestow Curse spell at the ready. Since we're a Phaerimm we also don't need to use our hands to cast spells, allowing us to "pre-buff" with Spell Flower and fill all of our hands with a charge of Bestow Curse for combats where we deem it necessary. Spell Flower also allows us to cast other spells without losing any of our held touch spells. Spring Attack is also granted to us during these levels and allows us to discharge our touch spells as part of an attack with our claws while avoiding the attacks of opportunity we would normally provoke as a tiny creature entering another creature's square to make our attacks. Without Spring Attack, we can use our points in Tumble to move through, into, or around enemy spaces without provoking attacks of opportunity. Haste is cast as a free or swift action, depending on how your DM rules, so it's no hassle for us to cast it during the first round of combat to further increase our chances of hitting with our touch spells and increase the distance we can move with Spring Attack.

    Since we learn Arcane Fusion at this level range, our action economy gets another boost, allowing us to cast Spell Flower and Bestow Curse simultaneously, or True Strike and Bestow Curse if we're facing enemies that are particularly troublesome to hit. Trait Removal also becomes an option allowing us to remove our Phaerimm immunity to Polymorph for an entire adventuring day. This means we can take macho melee forms or snag racial bonus feats like Weapon Finesse for free if we need to increase our chances to hit, fast forms for the speed of our movement, or any other variable we find ourselves lacking in any given combat. Speaking of spell options, Bite of the Wererat with or without Quick Potion is another great combination that allows us to pick up Weapon Finesse during the buff round of any combat we find ourselves needing a little extra oomph.

    Let's also talk about our Familiar. The action economy advantages it provides us with are huge. For example, we can share our Arcane Fusion (a personal spell) with it to also allow it to apply curses to our enemies. Also consider the fact that Spell Flower is a personal spell, and that Girallon's Blessing is a touch spell. This means it can benefit from both spells, thus holding multiple curses for us simultaneously while reducing the number of spells we have to cast (since they're all being shared). Since it uses our base attack bonus, it also stands to have a good chance of connecting. We can also transport it with us during Spring Attacks via Familiar Pocket while also keeping it safe from harm. It can then pop out as a free action and tag an enemy with a curse before ducking back to safety. It benefits from our ranks in Tumble as well, allowing it to get in close and apply touch attacks on its own. When nearby, it will even benefit from our save reducing aura when applying curses or other debilitating spells for us. When hanging back it can use spells like Benign Transposition to get us out of trouble or into it, or even spells like Dimension Step to provide the rest of the party with a similar benefit. The possibilities are endless. It can even hold the charge on another instance of Bestow Curse for us to keep it ready for our next combat. This frees us up so we don't have to use Spell Flower every time we want to cast a spell when holding the charge, since our familiar is holding it for us. What's more, all of these tricks only get better as the build progresses and we're able to share more buffs and higher level Arcane Fusion combinations with our familiar.

    If you're following my preferred build discussed in the variants and premise sections, you'll have Weapon Finesse naturally available at level 6 (ECL 7) and Poison Spell available at level 9 (ECL 11). However, since the build chart follows the competitions ideals Poison Spell happens during this level range as opposed to during the next one. So let's talk about it now. With the penalty to saves we're giving to enemies hovering somewhere around -10, and the fact that we're using touch spells gratuitously, Poison Spell becomes extremely potent at reducing enemies' saves even further, or reducing their chances of harming us (or one of our allies) even further if we target an attribute like Strength. We can even take Minor Creation as a spell known to conjure up plant-based poisons and alchemical items of any kind to this end. However, do note something special about the Poison Spell feat: it makes contact or injury poisons material components of our melee touch spells. Since a Phaerimm explicitly ignores material components for their sorcerer spells, we can now arguably use any contact or injury poison as part of our touch spells without having to take Minor Creation (or buy a ton of poison) in the first place.


    Spoiler: Level 11-15
    Show
    Charisma to initiative rolls happens now, ensuring that we go first during most combats to be able to implement our plan. Being able to go first means we're able to pick out the deadliest enemy and immediately tag them with a Bestow Curse effect. Once we get Bounding Assault we can do this to the two deadliest enemies for any fight in which we have Spell Flower up. Our claws and touch attacks are also now dishing out an extra 1d6 damage thanks to the continued upgrades to Swift Surge.

    Evasive Celerity means even targeted spells are at the mercy of the miss chances we maleficently manifest, making nothing short of area effects subject to multiple percentile rolls to be effective.

    Since we'll almost always have Haste up, Diligent Rapidity effectively saves us from having to enchant our armor with a Freedom of Movement effect or waste a spell known on something like Heart of Water. Furthermore, since Haste is now extraordinary, we're also able to make use of this defense in nearly any situation. In fact, because all of the Swiftblade's abilities are extraordinary, we are able to use Antimagic Field as yet another defensive tool in our arsenal while losing far less than other spellcasters would.

    Of course, the most potent tool we gain at this level range is Twin Spell and Rapid Metamagic. Twin Spell in particular allows us to further increase the potency of our save reducing auras and double the effectiveness of the Poison Spell feat. With the save penalty easily in the teens, and the fact that we can force two saves against a high DC Bestow Curse (due to maxing our Charisma), odds are slim that our targets aren't affected by our double miss chance strategy. Of course, with options like Black Lotus Extract applied to Poison Spell--possibly in combination with touch spells like Parching Touch--we also have instant kill options available to us by way of Constitution damage.

    The spell options at this level give us a lot to consider in terms of possibilities. Thanks to our Phaerimm spellcasting, we're also hitting 9th level spells already. That being said, four options in particular stand out from the others: Limited Wish, Greater Bestow Curse, Greater Arcane Fusion, and Ability Rip. Limited Wish allows us to switch up our build on the fly (thanks to Psychic Reformation being a 4th level effect). It also allows us to grab immunities and spell combinations from other classes' lists. Limited Wish also fits neatly inside Greater Arcane Fusion for even more spellcasting combinations and buff round(s) options. Meanwhile, Greater Bestow Curse provides us with another means of action denial by giving us access to the ability to prevent targets who fail their save from casting spells, using spell-like abilities, or activiating spell completion or spell trigger items. It also allows us to turn all of a target's allies against them. Ability Rip allows us to shuffle our save reducing auras (both Supernatural abilities) to our familiar while it's Shapechanged, thus allowing it to never have to lose any real abilities while still allowing us to benefit from the auras' save reducing effects regardless of what form we take.


    Spoiler: Level 16-20
    Show
    This is where our "Sweet Spot" ends and everything comes together for a climactic finish. With Perpetual Options and Innervated Speed in addition to Arcane Fusion and Greater Arcane Fusion, we can effectively set up all of our tricks from previous levels in a single round. If need be, we can even use our attack patterns (Spring Attack/Bounding Assault) as part of a round in which we use Arcane Fusion or Greater Arcane Fusion to fill our arms with Bestow Curses, Parching Touches, or any other defensive buff combination we need. Once we have access to Practical Metamagic or Arcane Thesis, we can even put Twinned Bestow Curses in our Arcane Fusion. Alternatively, we can go the Residual Magic route to allow repeated use of choice metamagic. Just remember to adjust your skillpoints accordingly, we have plenty to spare and we don't need as many points into Tumble as we're taking to help us flip around the battlefield.

    The last levels after we're done with the secret ingredient are really of little consequence. That being said, they do a nice job making us better at some of the things we were already good at. Arcane Duelist gives our AC a significant boost, allowing us to apply our Charisma to it regardless of what we're wearing, while also providing us a minor to-hit bonus. Warblade gives us even more (Ex) options that pair well with the nonmagical abilities of the Swiftblade when we need them. White Raven Tactics and Iron Heart Surge are both available to us to allow us to perform our duties as tank and action economy manager. Since it's our last level, we also don't have to worry about multiclass penalties.



    Spoiler: Bestow Curse
    Show
    Bestow Curse is one of the cornerstones of this build that allows us to get the most synergy out of the secret ingredient. If you were reading the level breakdown and came across an effect you weren't familiar with, it was likely from one of the alternative curse rules spread through out various splats. But those aren't the only uses it has. There are even more synergies with our race choice and build goals by using it as a "buff".

    The first option comes from the Book of Vile Darkness, whereby a curse can be used to increase the target's age category by one step (for Bestow Curse) or two steps (for Greater Bestow Curse). Phaerimms are similar to dragons in that each time they increase an age category they gain HD and a number of other benefits including spellcasting. This allows us to temporarily "power up" for difficult fights by applying curses to ourself to increase our spellcasting ability. This is most effective early on, and can be used to give us higher level spells significantly earlier.

    The second option comes from Secrets of Xen'drik. The book presents a number of curses that may or may not be useable as alternatives for your own Bestow Curse or Greater Bestow Curse spells. Unlike the Book of Vile Darkness, it's never spelled out. So we're never certain whether or not any given curse would be most applicable to Bestow Curse or its greater version. That being said, most of them are in line with alternative effects for both. Regardless of which version of Bestow Curse you're allowed to apply each additional effect to, placing the following curse on ourself to make all hostile enemies attack us is desirable:

    Quote Originally Posted by Secrets of Xen'drik p.96
    The character is surrounded by an unnerving aura of menace. Lower the starting attitude of NPCs and animals toward this PC by one step. If a creature is already hostile, it attacks this character in preference to any others.
    While this curse isn't necessary to make the build function in it's role, it does provide a unique means for us to carry out our duty in an absolute sense and let's us get even more use out of Blurred Alacrity and Evasive Celerity, in addition to our increased mobility in a "catch me if you can" fashion.





    Spoiler: Spell Table
    Show

    Spells per Day/Spells Known
    Spells per Day/Spells Known
    Level 0lvl 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
    LA +1 - - - - - - - - - -
    LA +2 - - - - - - - - - -
    3rd 6/5 4/2 - - - - - - - -
    4th 6/5 5/3 - - - - - - - -
    5th 6/6 6/3 3/1 - - - - - - -
    6th 6/6 6/4 4/2 - - - - - - -
    7th 6/7 6/5 6/3 4/2 - - - - - -
    8th 6/8 6/5 6/3 5/2 3/1 - - - - -
    9th 6/9 6/5 6/4 6/3 5/2 3/1 - - - -
    10th 6/9 6/5 6/5 6/4 6/3 5/2 3/1 - - -
    11th 6/9 6/5 6/5 6/4 6/4 6/3 4/2 - - -
    12th 6/9 6/5 6/5 6/4 6/4 6/4 6/3 4/2 - -
    13th 6/9 6/5 6/5 6/4 6/4 6/4 6/3 6/3 4/2 -
    14th 6/9 6/5 6/5 6/4 6/4 6/4 6/3 6/3 5/2 3/1
    15th 6/9 6/5 6/5 6/4 6/4 6/4 6/3 6/3 6/3 6/3
    16th 6/9 6/5 6/5 6/4 6/4 6/4 6/3 6/3 6/3 6/3
    17th 6/9 6/5 6/5 6/4 6/4 6/4 6/3 6/3 6/3 6/3
    18th 6/9 6/5 6/5 6/4 6/4 6/4 6/3 6/3 6/3 6/3
    19th 6/9 6/5 6/5 6/4 6/4 6/4 6/3 6/3 6/3 6/3
    20th 6/9 6/5 6/5 6/4 6/4 6/4 6/3 6/3 6/3 6/3


    Spoiler: Summary
    Show
    Use of Secret Ingredient:

    Spring Attack and Bounding Assault: Move and tag enemies with your touch spells, applying debilitating effects as you go.

    Swift Surge: Increased AC and Reflex saves are great because we want to be the one drawing all of the enemies' attention. Since area effects are the only attack types that have a decent chance of connecting, our Reflex saves are all the more important. The to-hit bonuses help with the touch attacks we're always using, while the damage bonus is a nice extra boost to nearly any attack we make. The extra speed helps us clear distances on the battlefield with ease, increases the chances we'll be able to apply one or more curses to choice enemies on the battlefield with Spring Attack or Bounding Assault.

    Blurred Alacrity: Get enemies to target you and double up on "miss" chances by using spells like Bestow Curse to make them roll to act and then roll to see if they can hit. Reducing their ability scores can also increase "miss" chances by making it harder for them to hit your AC before having to roll a miss chance.

    Sudden Casting: This build relies a great deal on action economy, setting everything up before the fight or in the first round of combat with relative ease. Since most of our spell combinations and attacks are standard actions, and we'll almost always want to use our move actions to move, Sudden Casting fits perfectly into our preferred action combinations.

    Arcane Reflexes: Since our goal is action denial and action failure, going first is extremely important to us as it allows us to debilitate key targets before they have a chance to act.

    Evasive Celerity: Functionally amazing for us for all the same reasons as Blurred Alacrity. Make enemies roll to act, then roll again to see if their spell fails.

    Fortified Hustle: Gives us even stronger defenses by providing us with mundane means to act. Best of all, since we're a Phaerimm and cast spells as spell-like abilities, our spells cannot be counterspelled thus covering the one countermeasure Fortified Hustle leaves enemies to stop our Haste spell and its rider effects.

    Diligent Rapidity: Since we rely so much on movement to apply our effects, having Freedom of Movement up ensures that we're never have to worry about someone stopping us from doing our job. Since this is also (Ex), we can even avoid antimagic grapplers and other such nuisances.

    Perpetual Options: Increases our effective combinations dramatically, allowing us to forget about spending our first round of combat or out of combat resources preparing for the current/next fight. Allows us to cast Arcane Fusion or Greater Arcane Fusion to greater effect. Possibilities include Arcane Fusion (Spell Flower + Bestow Curse), move close to enemies, then Greater Arcane Fusion (Twin Bestow Curse + Snake's Swiftness). Etc. The possibilities are literally endless. The beauty of all of this is that we can effectively share this extra action with our familiar via the Share Spells feature, doubling its value.

    Innervated Speed: Perpetual Options inside a lower level Time Stop effect means we can have a held touch spell ready for every enemy on the battlefield at the start of combat via Spell Flower, Girallon's Blessing, and grafts that grant additional arms. Alternatively, we can use this time to tailor our defenses to our enemies before drawing fire, or make the battlefield more favorable to us and our allies.


    Spoiler: Items
    Show
    Buy as many arm-related grafts as possible, preferrably with claw attacks. More arms means more touch spells can be held at the same time with your Spell Flower inside Arcane Fusion + Perpetual Options combinations.

    Metamagic Storm is nice since it provides us with a free metamagic feat to qualify for Twin Spell, thus giving you an extra feat to spend elsewhere.

    The weapon Rapid Wrath from Ghostwalk is another nice option as long as you have it on you it doubles your effective speed, making you even better at tagging enemies.

    Since we don't have to worry about spell failure as a Phaerimm, we can wear any type of armor without having to worry about spell failure.

    A Ring of Evasion helps us avoid area spells, the one attack type our build is conditionally vulnerable to.



    Spoiler: Variants
    Show
    Weapon Finesse: If you want to get into your touch range spells right away you can also dump Strength and put the points into Intelligence while taking the Metamagic Specialist ACF. This saves you a feat on Rapid Metamagic and allows you to take Weapon Finesse, which works with Touch spells per the Rules Compendium. This will be significantly weaker than having a familiar later on, but is still an option. If retraining wasn't looked down upon by the chair, I would have presented this as a retraining option. It still remains an option via Limited Wish -> Psychic Reformation. Alternatively (and this is my preferred build), we could use the Metamagic Storm magical location to avoid the need for the Extend Spell feat to qualify for Twin Spell and take Weapon Finesse at level 6, while delaying Poison Spell until level 9.

    Paladin ACFs: There are quite a few to choose from here, I intentionally didn't include any apart from the Tyranny variant because this greatly depends on what your DM allows. For example, would they allow you to swap Deadly Touch with variants for Lay on Hands? Or Smite Good for the Smite Evil ACF options? It depends, so I decided to leave it be, but these could be sources of other minor benefits for the build.

    Non-Phaerimm: As mentioned in the premise, this build is fully functional without taking levels in Phaerimm. You can go regular sorcerer, Stalwart Battle Sorcerer, or any other such combination of classes that progress your sorcerer casting. You'll only have 16 effective sorcerer spellcasting levels this way (all 4 lost by the Swiftblade progression), but it's still functionally the same build with lower saves, AC, and BAB. If you do go this route, consider investing more heavily in Craft (alchemy) or (poison) and be sure to pick a race with natural weapons or obtain them via grafts and the spell Girallon's Blessing.


    Spoiler: Sources
    Show
    Secrets of Xen'drik (curses of Xen'drik)
    Book of Vile Darkness (alternative curses)
    Lost Empires of Faerun (Phaerimm)
    Serpent Kingdoms (Trait Removal and Ability Rip)
    Web (Swiftblade and Arcane Duelist articles)
    Unearthed Arcana (Paladin of Tyranny)
    Tome of Battle (Warblade)
    Complete Mage (Arcane Fusion, Rapid Metamagic, Metamagic Storm, [possibly] Residual Magic)
    Complete Arcane (Twin Spell)
    Drow of the Underdark (Poison Spell)
    Races of the Wild (Expeditious Dodge)
    Spell Compendium (Spell Flower and a number of our spells known)
    Rules Compendium (weapon-like spell rules and other rules in general)
    (Possibly) Player's Handbook II or Races of the Dragon (Metamagic Specialist, Arcane Thesis or Practical Metamagic)
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    The only person in the past two pages who has known what (s)he has been talking about is Heliomance.
    Quote Originally Posted by golentan View Post
    I just don't want to have long romantic conversations or any sort of drama with my computer, okay? It knows what kind of porn I watch. I don't want to mess that up by allowing it to judge any of my choices in romance.

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  26. - Top - End - #116
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    Entry number 5:

    Quote Originally Posted by Chad the Fur(r)y
    Chad the Fur(r)y
    TN Human Fighter 1/Wu Jen 5/Swiftblade 10/Abjurant Champion 4

    Spoiler: Ability Scores
    Show
    Str 13
    Dex 8
    Con 14
    Int 18 (22)
    Wis 8
    Cha 13 (14 at 20th)


    Spoiler: Backstory
    Show
    Professional wrestler [Chad] sports the body of a mountain, but beneath his hulking appearance is a man with an extreme affection for animals. Facing off his opponents in the ring as the legendary "Animal Mask," [Chad] wins the hearts of crowds everywhere with his iconic tiger persona.

    During the bout for the title of World Champion against his greatest rival, the Macadamian Ogre, [Chad] is suddenly summoned to a fantasy world by a princess. With her kingdom being threatened by a monster infestation, she pleads the wrestler for assistance—to which he answers by knocking her out with a German suplex! Escaping the castle and finding himself stranded in a mysterious land, [Chad] decides to begin his career as a beast hunter to [Spirit Bind] and befriend creatures far and wide.


    Spoiler: Build
    Show

    Chad the Fur(r)y
    Level Class Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Skills Feats Class Features
    1st Fighter 1 +1 +2 +0 +0 Balance 2, Concentration 2, Handle Animal 4, Intimidate 4, Jump 4, Ride 4, Spellcraft 2 Expeditious Dodge, Mobility Power Attack
    2nd Wu Jen 1 +1 +2 +0 +2 Balance 2, Concentration 5, Handle Animal 4, Intimidate 4, Jump 4.5, Ride 4, Spellcraft 5 - Watchful Spirit, Still Spell
    3rd Wu Jen 2 +2 +2 +0 +3 Balance 3, Concentration 6, Handle Animal 4, Intimidate 4, Jump 6, Ride 4, Spellcraft 6 Improved Bull Rush Intuitive Spirit
    4th Wu Jen 3 +2 +3 +1 +3 Balance 3.5, Concentration 7, Handle Animal 4, Intimidate 4, Jump 7, Ride 5, Spellcraft 7 - Spell Secret: Extend Spell Bull's Strength
    5th Wu Jen 4 +3 +3 +1 +4 Balance 5, Concentration 8, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 4, Jump 7, Ride 5, Spellcraft 8 - -
    6th Wu Jen 5 +3 +3 +1 +4 Balance 5, Concentration 9, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 8, Ride 5.5, Spellcraft 9 Leap Attack -
    7th Swiftblade 1 +4 +3 +3 +6 Balance 5, Concentration 10, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 8, Ride 5.5, Spellcraft 10, Spot 7 - Spring Attack, swift surge +1/+0 ft.
    8th Swiftblade 2 +5 +3 +4 +7 Balance 5, Concentration 11, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 10, Ride 6, Spellcraft 11, Spot 11 - Blurred alacrity
    9th Swiftblade 3 +6 +4 +4 +7 Balance 5, Concentration 12, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 11, Ride 9, Spellcraft 12, Spot 12 Shock Trooper Sudden casting
    10th Swiftblade 4 +7 +4 +5 +7 Balance 5, Concentration 13, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 12, Ride 12, Spellcraft 13, Spot 13 - Arcane reflexes, swift surge +1/+10 ft.
    11th Swiftblade 5 +8 +4 +5 +7 Balance 5, Concentration 14, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 13, Listen 2, Ride 14, Spellcraft 14, Spot 14 - Evasive celerity
    12th Swiftblade 6 +9 +5 +6 +8 Balance 5, Concentration 15, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 14, Listen 6, Ride 15, Spellcraft 15, Spot 15 Practiced Spellcaster Fortified hustle
    13th Swiftblade 7 +10 +5 +6 +8 Balance 5, Concentration 16, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 16, Listen 10, Ride 16, Spellcraft 16, Spot 15 - Bounding Assault, swift surge +2/+10 ft.
    14th Swiftblade 8 +11 +5 +7 +9 Balance 5, Concentration 17, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 17, Listen 16, Ride 16, Spellcraft 17, Spot 17 - Diligent rapidity
    15th Swiftblade 9 +12 +6 +7 +9 Balance 5, Concentration 18, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 18, Listen 18, Ride 18, Spellcraft 18, Spot 18 Combat Casting Perpetual options
    16th Swiftblade 10 +13 +6 +8 +10 Balance 5, Concentration 19, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 19, Listen 19, Ride 18, Spellcraft 19, Spot 19, Tumble 4 - Innervated speed, swift surge +2/+20 ft.
    17th Abjurant Champion 1 +14 +6 +8 +13 Balance 5, Concentration 20, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 20, Listen 20, Ride 18, Spellcraft 20, Spot 20, Tumble 5 - Abjurant Armor, Extended Abjuration
    18th Abjurant Champion 2 +15 +6 +8 +14 Balance 5, Concentration 21, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 21, Listen 21, Ride 18, Spellcraft 21, Spot 21, Tumble 6 Echoing Spell Swift Abjuration
    19th Abjurant Champion 3 +16 +7 +9 +14 Balance 5, Concentration 22, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 22, Listen 22, Ride 18, Spellcraft 22, Spot 22, Tumble 7 - -
    20th Abjurant Champion 4 +17 +7 +9 +15 Balance 5, Concentration 23, Handle Animal 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 23, Listen 23, Ride 18, Spellcraft 23, Spot 23, Tumble 8 - Arcane Boost


    Spoiler: Spells Per Day
    Show
    Spells per Day/Spells Known
    Level 0lvl 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
    1st - - - - - - - - - -
    2nd 4 2 - - - - - - - -
    3rd 4 3 - - - - - - - -
    4th 4 3 2 - - - - - - -
    5th 4 4 3 - - - - - - -
    6th 4 4 3 2 - - - - - -
    7th 4 4 3 2 - - - - - -
    8th 4 5 4 3 - - - - - -
    9th 4 6 4 3 2 - - - - -
    10th 4 6 4 3 2 - - - - -
    11th 4 6 4 4 3 - - - - -
    12th 4 6 5 4 3 2 - - - -
    13th 4 6 5 4 3 2 - - - -
    14th 4 6 5 4 4 3 - - - -
    15th 4 6 5 5 4 3 1 - - -
    16th 4 6 6 5 4 3 2 - - -
    17th 4 6 6 5 4 4 3 - - -
    18th 4 6 6 5 5 4 3 1 - -
    19th 4 6 6 5 5 4 4 2 - -
    20th 4 6 6 5 5 5 4 2 1 -


    Spoiler: Level 5
    Show
    Chad gets off to a slow start; at level 5 he's only at +3 BAB and 2nd level spells but that still gives him access to Alter Self and between the AC bonus from a Blended Quartz Chain Shirt and the natural armor of something like a Wereboar, Hybrid Form, he can wade into combat with an AC of about 21. If there's enough prep time he can even alter self first and then have a buddy help him with his full plate for 25 AC and the rest of his level 2's used for Still Spell'd Hail of Stone or something.


    Spoiler: Level 10
    Show
    Chad is officially a charger; he's got Shock Trooper, Leap Attack, a Valorous Lance, and 7 BAB to feed in. Arcane Reflexes from the SI coupled with Watchful Spirit means he rolls initiative at +5 and gets to re-roll. Additionally, since the SI is all about personal buffs Chad's going to earn his name by habitually polymorphing into a centaur so that he gets the lance bonus on his charges without relying on a mount (although he could with all the skill points he has). But optimally he can poly a mount, poly himself, and then charge with high AC and the 40% miss chance from Blurred Alacrity which makes the Shock Trooper AC drop a lot less significant.


    Spoiler: Level 15
    Show
    Picking up Practiced Spell caster helps fill the lost caster levels from the SI and 6th level spells means Spirit Binding is on the table to get some pretty baller mounts. He still has all the charger tricks except his BAB is now +12 and between Diligent Rapidity and Perpetual Options he can charge just about every turn.


    Spoiler: Level 20
    Show
    4 levels of Abjurant Champion means picking up Arcane Boost just in time to leverage Innervated Speed, Polymorph, Giant Size, and Body Outside Body. Oh and since he got Practiced Spellcaster that's still Colossal Size. Greater Spirit Binding means an even better mount and his last ability point boost is to CHA in order to make convincing that epic ha-naga a little easier. +17 BAB with 8th level spells and enough effective time stoppage to set up all the silly buffs that Wu Jen gets.


    Spoiler: Equipment
    Show
    Blended Quartz from Arms and Equipment Guide decreases ASF by 20% so Chad can keep wearing a chain shirt past level 1 without worrying about anything at all but since he took Still Spell early on he's probably *rocking* Full Plate and either using the feat on the important stuff or trying to roll above a 3 on the rest.


    Spoiler: Sources
    Show
    PHB: Lots
    Complete Arcane: Wu Jen, Practiced Spellcaster
    http://archive.wizards.com/default.a.../prc/20070327: SI
    http://archive.wizards.com/default.a...cwc/20070227x: Intuitive Spirit
    Complete Mage: Abjurant Champion
    Races of the Wild: Expeditious Dodge
    Complete Adventurer: Leap Attack, Sizing
    Complete Warrior: Shock Trooper
    Secrets of Xen'drik: Echoing Spell
    Arms and Equipment Guide: Blended Quartz
    Unapproachable East: Valorous
    Hataage! Kemono Michi: Backstory
    Last edited by Heliomance; 2019-11-28 at 04:39 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kalirren View Post
    The only person in the past two pages who has known what (s)he has been talking about is Heliomance.
    Quote Originally Posted by golentan View Post
    I just don't want to have long romantic conversations or any sort of drama with my computer, okay? It knows what kind of porn I watch. I don't want to mess that up by allowing it to judge any of my choices in romance.

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  27. - Top - End - #117
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Entry number 6:

    Quote Originally Posted by Ferdinand Aloysius Sebastian Thennibyne
    Ferdinand Aloysius Sebastian Thennibyne
    (mostly known as F. A. S. T.)
    The Word On The Move

    Quote Originally Posted by John Mcwhorter, Words on the Move
    One of the hardest notions for a human being to shake is that a language is something that is, when it is actually something always becoming. They tell you a word is a thing, when it's actually something going on. (pg. 3)

    [. . .]

    That term may seem like a bit of a stunt. Yet it represents a perfectly normal phenomenon: the meanings of words are ever on the move. (pg. 56)

    [. . .]

    But beyond a few words like these, change is the default; it's stasis that is weird. (pg. 60)

    [. . .]

    Since words can't sit still [. . .] a word is a thing on the move. (pg. 99)
    Illumian, uurnaen, lawful good
    Monk 2 / truenamer 6 / fighter 1 / swordsage 1 / swiftblade 10

    6 pts: 14 STR
    10 pts: 16 DEX (increase at 4th. 8th, 12, 16th, 20th)
    4 pts: 12 CON
    10 pts: 16 INT
    2 pts: 10 WIS
    0 pts: 8 CHA

    Tables
    Spoiler
    Show

    Level Class Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Feats Class Features Skill Points Tumble Truespeak Hide Concentration Spellcraft Move Silently Balance Knowledge (arcana)
    1 Monk 1 0 +2 +2 +2 IUS (B), Dodge (B), Combat Expertise Cobra Strike bonus feats [UA], decisive strike [PHB2], unarmed strike 28 4 2 4 4 2 4 4
    2 Monk 2 1 +3 +3 +3 Mobility (B) Cobra Strike bonus feats [UA], invisible fist [EoE] 7 5 (+1) 5 (+1) 5 (+1) 2.5 (+0.5 cc) 5 (+1) 5 (+1) 1 (+1)
    3 Truenamer 1 1 +3 +3 +5 Ancestral Relic [BoED] Known personal truename, utterances 7 6 (+1 cc) 6 (+4) 6 (+1, prereq for swiftblade met)
    4 Truenamer 2 2 +3 +3 +6 - Knowledge focus (Arcana) 7 7 (+1 cc) 7 (+1) 7 (+2 cc)
    5 Truenamer 3 3 +4 +4 +6 - 7 8 (+1 cc) 8 (+1) 8 (+1 cc) 3.5 (+1 cc)
    6 Truenamer 4 4 +4 +4 +7 Combat Reflexes 7 9 (+1 cc) 9 (+1) 9 (+1 cc, prereq for Gloom Razor met) 4.5 (+1 cc)
    7 Truenamer 5 4 +4 +4 +7 - 7 10 (+1 cc) 10 (+1) 10 (+1 cc) 5 (+0.5 cc) 2 (+1)
    8 Truenamer 6 5 +5 +5 +8 Truename Research (B) [ToM] 7 11 (+1 cc) 11 (+1) 11 (+1 cc) 5.5 (+0.5 cc) 3 (+1)
    9 Fighter 1 6 +7 +5 +8 Spectral Skirmisher (B) [PHB2], Sidestep [MinH] Skilled City Dweller [Cityscape web], Bonus Feat, Hit-And-Run Tactics [DotU] 5 12 (+1, prereq for Word Given Form met) 12 (+1 cc, prereq for Word Given Form met) 6 (+0.5 cc, prereq for swiftblade met) 6 (+1)
    10 Swiftblade 1 7 +7 +7 +10 Spring Attack (B) Swift surge +1/+0 ft 7 13 (+1) 13 (+1 cc) 13 (+1 cc)
    11 Swiftblade 2 8 +7 +8 +11 - Blurred alacrity 7 14 (+1) 14 (+1 cc) 14 (+1 cc) 6 (+2 cc)
    12 Swordsage 1 8 +7 +10 +13 Shadow Blade [ToB], Weapon Focus (Shadow Hand weapons) (B) Quick to Act +1, Discipline Focus (Weapon Focus), 6 maneuvers, 1 stance 9 15 (+1) 15 (+1 cc) 15 (+1) 11 (+5)
    13 Swiftblade 3 9 +8 +10 +13 - Sudden casting 7 16 (+1 cc) 16 (+1 cc) 9 (+3)
    14 Swiftblade 4 10 +8 +11 +14 - Arcane reflexes, swift surge +1/+10 ft 7 17 (+1 cc) 17 (+1 cc) 12 (+3)
    15 Swiftblade 5 11 +8 +11 +14 Gloom Razor [ToB] Evasive celerity 7 18 (+1 cc) 18 (+1 cc) 15 (+3)
    16 Swiftblade 6 12 +9 +12 +15 - Fortified hustle 7 19 (+1 cc) 19 (+1 cc) 18 (+3)
    17 Swiftblade 7 13 +9 +12 +15 Bounding Assault (PHB2) (B) Swift surge +2/+10 ft 7 20 (+1 cc) 20 (+1 cc) 20 (+2) 7 (+1)
    18 Swiftblade 8 14 +9 +13 +16 Karmic Strike [CWar] Diligent rapidity 7 21 (+1 cc) 21 (+1 cc) 21 (+1) 12 (+1 cc)
    19 Swiftblade 9 15 +10 +13 +16 - Perpetual options 7 22 (+1 cc) 22 (+1 cc) 22 (+1) 13 (+1 cc)
    20 Swiftblade 10 16 +10 +14 +17 - Innervated speed, swift surge +2/+20 ft 7 23 (+1 cc) 23 (+1 cc) 23 (+1) 14 (+1 cc)

    Utterances:
    • TN 1 (ECL 3): universal aptitude
    • TN 2 (ECL 4) inertia surge
    • TN 3 (ECL 5) strike of might
    • TN 4 (ECL 6) lesser word of nurturing, keen weapon
    • TN 5 (ECL 7) silent caster
    • TN 6 (ECL 8) greater speed of the zephyr


    Maneuvers:
    • island of blades
    • shadow jaunt
    • cloak of deception
    • insightful strike
    • emerald razor
    • ruby nightmare blade
    • burning blade








    On Your Mark (1-2)
    Spoiler
    Show
    Early play sees a bit of setup, but F. A. S. T. is still likely to survive. Monk's defensive abilities are put to good use; in particular, invisible fist adds both offense and defense in a single package. F. A. S. T.'s monk features are carefully chosen to not go away when using light armor, so once level 3 rolls around and he picks up proficiency, wearing light armor is a smart choice. Overall, though, monk's job is to get prereqs and get them right away, and boy does that ever happen. Say what you will, it's efficient.


    Get Set (3-9)
    Spoiler
    Show
    Illumians, born of the Ritual of Word Made Flesh, have a natural affinity for Truespeak, both mechanically and by fluff. F. A. S. T.'s grandmother left him a precious amulet, which he'll enchant via Ancestral Relic to be an amulet of the silver tongue (and, eventually, a +competence item)—it's about the most efficient method in the system to ensure that you've got a halfway decent bonus to Truespeak. Some utterances are stock-standard: everyone loves universal aptitude and inertia surge as general-purpose utility, for instance. Some are a bit out of the ordinary: strike of might is appropriate for F. A. S. T.'s vaguely gishy nature (and, if he happens to be in perfect position, it aligns nicely with decisive strike), and silent caster will make thematic sense in a bit. (There's gonna be some hiding later on.)

    The real joy, though, comes with greater speed of the zephyr. But perhaps that is its own story.

    For some incredibly stupid reason, truenamer doesn't get Spellcraft as a class skill, so F. A. S. T. handles the HD limitation with a level of fighter, since he needs a martial weapon for swiftblade, a bonus feat to get his fun tricks online, and a point of BAB to make that bonus feat the one he really wants, so fighter it is. Skilled city dweller turns Ride into Tumble.

    At 9th level, F. A. S. T. is very careful to make sure that he uses all 0 of his 3rd level spell slots to cast haste. Every single none of them. There are no spell slots that F. A. S. T. uses this level to cast any spells other than haste. This is very important.


    And We're Off! (10-15)
    Spoiler
    Show
    So much comes together now! F. A. S. T. dives into swiftblade as quickly as a truenamer can.

    Let's dive deeper into the secret ingredient! As noted above, F. A. S. T. used all 0 of his 0 3rd level slots casting haste. Quick rules citation from Complete Arcane:

    Quote Originally Posted by Complete Arcane, pg. 72
    Specific Spell Requirements: A requirement based on a specific spell measures whether the character or creature in question is capable of producing the necessary effect, and as such, invocations and spell-like abilities that generate the relevant effect meet the requirements for specific spell knowledge.
    Since greater speed of the zephyr generates the effect of haste, we're golden for the prereqs. So let's keep uttering that bad boy and see what happens!

    Spring Attack is the last piece of the puzzle to get F. A. S. T.'s martial arts mastery online. As a reminder, martial arts styles are not feats; they are benefits that are received automatically upon meeting the onerous prereqs. Ritual of Word Made Flesh, meet Word Given Form:

    Quote Originally Posted by Tome of Magic, pg. 218
    Prerequisites: Truespeak 12 ranks, Tumble 12 ranks, Combat Expertise, Dodge, Improved Unarmed Strike, Mobility, Spring Attack
    Benefit: When using the Dodge feat against an opponent, in addition to the +1 dodge bonus to AC, you also gain total concealment (50% miss chance) from that opponent as your form blurs and shifts.
    As John McWhorter will tell you, nothing is more changeable than words. They're incredibly slippery and mobile, so to me, this makes perfect sense from a fluff standpoint. You can't look directly at a word; at best you can observe its effects on the environment. They're just moving too fast.

    Here's another relevant rules quote:

    Quote Originally Posted by Rules Compendium, pg. 92
    If you're successfully hidden with respect to another creature, that creature is flat-footed with respect to you. That creature treats you as if you were invisible.
    Total concealment allows for hiding. Hiding is treated as invisibility. Invisibility allows F. A. S. T. to trigger the benefits of Spectral Skirmisher. Oh, and since the Rules Compendium also indicates that the target is "flat-footed" with respect to you, F. A. S. T. can use hit-and-run tactics for a little extra oomph, because why not?

    So to spell this out a bit more, F. A. S. T. can turn invisible from invisible fist (against everyone, 1/3 rounds) and can constantly get total concealment (enabling hiding, which is treated as invisibility per the Rules Compendium) against one opponent at a time from Word Given Form. When an opponent attacks him while he's invisible, Spectral Skirmisher allows him to hit back, and Sidestep allows him to then shift away (often out of range). Since Sidestep is movement, that can enable another Hide check. If he happened to have set up decisive strike (which is sometimes, but not always, wise), all AoOs will deal double damage. Combat Reflexes allows him to make lots of AoOs (you're full-attacking me while invisible? I'ma full attack you right back!). Hit-and-run tactics adds a small but meaningful amount of extra damage.

    (Optional side piece: If you happen to have access to a sparring dummy of the master, F. A. S. T. has levels in monk and therefore can train with it to turn Sidestep into a 10-ft step, which is truly awesome. Alternatively, if you can freely add other +competence bonuses to your Ancestral Relic, getting a big enough bonus to Tumble to reliably hit DC 40 and therefore turn a 5-ft step into a 10-ft step can serve much the same purpose, and skill bonuses are very cheap to put into an Ancestral Relic. The build functions just fine without invoking either option, but the benefits are prodigious enough to be worth mentioning, and Ancestral Relic really does go a hell of a long way.)

    Spring Attack, in addition to being a prereq for Word Given Form, is useful when doing a long dodgy battle.

    Swift surge is passive, but numbers are useful. Never going to turn down AC, bonus damage, accuracy, or movement.

    Blurred alacrity, on the other hand, is the good stuff. It's thematic as hell. Indeed, it's the guiding inspiration for this entire build. To misquote the great poet Muhammad Ali, "float like a butterfly, sting like a bee; his hands cannot hit what is too fast to see!" F. A. S. T. leans into being too fast to see, just like the word (flesh and form) that he is. This is a critical defense as well; after all, sometimes invisible fist is recharging and there's more than one opponent to be Dodging against. Also, stick around for how we're going to bring this back in. The fun doesn't stop here.

    A quick jaunt into swordsage in time to pick up some prereqs is in order. Shadow Blade is well-known and well-loved; +DEX to damage adds up! Island of blades is chosen as the stance because child of shadow is redundant with blurred alacrity. (If your GM allows a character who multiclasses into swordsage to start with a stance that is not level 1, take assassin's stance instead; the build is presented with the uncontroversial option instead.) For maneuvers, shadow jaunt is mostly left unreadied and is primarily used out of combat; in combat, cloak of deception adds more invisibility, ruby nightmare blade and insightful strike are a lot of fun in general (especially once perpetual options hits the field), and burning blade is nice when you've got a ton of attacks going off at once. Emerald razor is mostly left unreadied but can be useful in certain contexts.

    Back into the SI: sudden casting is like Quicken Utterance for your best utterance only without the stupid +20 to the DC. That's amazing and stands on its own merits! F. A. S. T. uses this with no trouble.

    Arcane reflexes probably doesn't work, sadly, so instead, F. A. S. T. is designed to have cobbled together a bunch of other initiative bonuses that will serve a very similar purpose: +2 from the Uur sigil, +2 from hit-and-run fighter, and +1 from swordsage. Look, I'm trying here, okay? Same net effect, anyway. I'm bringing the right energy to the table. I'm clearly working with you, so please work with me.

    Evasive celerity is, when combined with blurred alacrity, word given form, and F. A. S. T.'s naturally obnoxiously high saving throws, a truly impressive defensive feature. It's passive, as most defensive features are, but F. A. S. T. is still dodgy enough in the aggregate that this really does close off what would otherwise be a key weak point.

    Also at 15th level, F. A. S. T. accesses Gloom Razor, which is perfect for the increased miss chance he gets from blurred alacrity by now.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tome of Battle, pg. 35, Gloom Razor
    Lingering Gloom: To use this option, your opponent must miss you due to concealment. On your next turn, you can make a Hide check opposed by your foe's Spot check as a swift action. If this check succeeds, you gain the benefits of an invisibility spell against that foe until the end of your turn.
    Moving Shadows: To use this option, you must deal damage to an enemy with a melee attack and move at least 10 feet during your turn. On your next turn, you can treat that enemy as flat-footed against the first melee attach you make in that round.
    Shadow Slip: To use this option, you must make a successful melee attack against an opponent you flank. On your next turn, you can make a DC 20 Tumble check if you are adjacent to your foe. If this check succeeds, as a free action you can move to any square adjacent to your opponent without provoking attacks of opportunity from any opponent.
    Was this feat just made for swiftblades? It was sure as hell made for F. A. S. T., or at least it looks that way.

    • First, Lingering Gloom. Someone misses F. A. S. T. because of blurred alacrity? Now we're gonna turn that into full invisibility, because F. A. S. T. is just too fast to see. (How else do you actively leverage a passive SI ability like that?) I love this part, to be honest. It's the most thematic bit.
    • Next, Moving Shadows: F. A. S. T. fights a mobile battle anyway, and there's that power word "flat-footed" again, so that helps trigger bonus damage from HaRT.
    • Finally, Shadow Slip: island of blades makes flanking trivial, and F. A. S. T. can autosucceed on a DC 20 Tumble check (ranks + DEX + Uur is enough on its own). Free movement means free pseudo-skirmish damage from swift surge, so this directly triggers the use of the SI's offensive abilities! Nailed it. This also means F. A. S. T. can often get decisive strike (making his AoOs deadlier) and the swift surge bonus at once, thereby making swift surge even more effective. Yes, I did choose this feat on purpose.


    Not bad!


    The Long Run (16+)
    Spoiler
    Show
    6+ is where swiftblade's weird abilities start to lurk.

    Fortified hustle is, admittedly, hard to proactively abuse. Goodness knows I tried. That said, the fact that all three of the effects of greater speed of the zephyr, the swiftblade class features, and Word Given Form are technically nonmagical means that F. A. S. T. is somewhat harder to shut down than normal, and that's good stuff.

    Bounding Assault is simply a good option when you're not starting where you think you'd like to start. It plays nice with burning blade, swift surge, and similar options.

    18th is a fun level! Diligent rapidity is not at all bad for someone who isn't afraid to hide and who's willing to get dirty. Saving an action not needing to cast inertia surge is great action economy! Furthermore, Karmic Strike ups F. A. S. T.'s already formidable AoO game. Like, by a lot. Decisive strike is extra-spicy here, and remember that Spectral Skirmisher is still in place, as is Sidestep. F. A. S. T. is simply too fast to pin down.

    Perpetual options just gets goofy, and if you don't love it, you're not creative enough. You want standard action strikes? F. A. S. T. delivers. You want to spend the action buffing? F. A. S. T. delivers. You want to use the super-obscure "start/complete a full-round action" rules (PHB pg. 142)? My friend, F. A. S. T. delivers: decisive strike is an attack that takes a full-round action, but it is not a full attack, so you can use that there and get an extra decisive strike every other round, which is going to make your regular full attack on that round just delectable (especially if you can activate burning blade, swift surge via Shadow Slip, and so on). Alternatively, you want to just move and decisive strike? Say no more. F. A. S. T. got u, fam.

    Finally, level 20, the stupidest of all possible class features: innervated speed. Consider this: greater speed of the zephyr creates the effect of haste. The spell level of an utterance can be increased (arbitrarily, even!) by increasing the Truespeak DC by multiples of 4 (ToM pg. 233). Can F. A. S. T. use this rule to get the effects of innervated speed? I think so. It's too damn funny not to try. Depending on just what items and other bonuses you're packing, you can get a long, loooong time stop effect just by being really good at words. Which I think is damned appropriate for an illumian truenamer swiftblade at level 20, and again, it's too funny not to share.

    Also, please watch that video. All of it. You will not regret it. You have my word as an Iron Chef.


    Notes that have nowhere else to go
    Spoiler
    Show
    Didja know that the sai and the siangham are both monk weapons (for decisive strike) and Shadow Hand weapons (for Shadow Blade, Gloom Razor, and Discipline Focus)? F. A. S. T. certainly can use an unarmed strike, but if you'd prefer to use something that actually has the potential for magical enhancement, you've got options. (None of F. A. S. T.'s abilities actually require an unarmed strike.) When's the last time you saw a build with a legit use for a siangham? That's what I thought.

    As mentioned, starting at level 3, just wear some dang light armor already. Even if you're invisible most of the time, that doesn't mean you need to be flopping around naked all over the place. You're made of words, but you don't need to leave your participles dangling! Have some decency, and by decency I mean a way better AC and the ability to have someplace to put magical enhancements. Neither decisive strike nor invisible fist go away when armored. Heck, you can even use a shield once you take your level of fighter. No meaningful downside to doing so. Not like you've got somatic components or ASF.

    Decisive strike is cool when you're getting lots of AoOs. It's absolutely not needed when you're not getting lots of AoOs, so if the extra swings from full attacking (with greater speed of the zephyr) are likely to give you what you need, then by all means, do that! Just because the build uses monk as the intro doesn't mean you have to act like a monk every round.

    Although you should be able to bootstrap your Truespeak mod into relevance with your ranks, INT, Naen sigil, and Ancestral Relic, you can get into the lower ranks of the Paragnostic Assembly starting at level 6-7 or so, depending on if you want to really devote yourself to Boccob. Might be worthwhile if you feel like making the effort; doing so does not change the build table as presented and is completely up to you.

    Note that in combat, you're not going to be using Move Silently super often. You're making loud unsubtle utterances, after all; you're unseen, not unnoticed. It is, nonetheless, the occasional option. Spectral Skirmisher helps a bit, as does Uur.

    Your power sigils, Uur and Naen, are simply chosen to give you a bonus to all DEX checks/skill checks (including Hide, Tumble, and initiative) and all INT checks/skill checks (including Truespeak). The combined word Uurnaen is not used on this character.

    Check it out: no multiclass penalty! Favored class: any means truenamer doesn't count, and all my other base classes are within 1 level of each other.

    Midnight Dodge (Magic of Incarnum) might be able to be used to get Word Given Form's total concealment against a second target at once. Not very common to take both Dodge and Midnight Dodge, but I'm pretty sure this works. I chose to leave it out of the build to keep things nice and unambiguous, but if you're actually trying to play this character or something similar and the GM is cool with it, that's worth taking a flaw for. (You'd need to shuffle a stat point or an ability score increase into CON, but that's not the end of the world.)


    Works cited
    Spoiler
    Show
    D&D sourcebooks in build:

    Tome of Battle (swordsage, maneuvers, Shadow Blade, Gloom Razor)
    Book of Exalted Deeds (Ancestral Relic)
    Miniatures Handbook (Sidestep)
    Tome of Magic (truenamer, utterances, Word Given Form, Truename Research)
    PHB2 (decisive strike ACF, Spectral Skirmisher, Bounding Assault)
    Complete Warrior (Karmic Strike)
    Races of Destiny (illumian)
    Unearthed Arcana (cobra strike monk ACF)
    Exemplars of Evil (invisible fist ACF)
    Cityscape web enhancement (skilled city dweller ACF)
    Drow of the Underdark (hit-and-run fighter ACF)
    WotC Web Archive (swiftblade)
    PHB/SRD (all others)

    D&D sourcebooks used but not in build table:

    Complete Arcane (rules)
    Rules Compendium (rules)
    Complete Champion (optional use of Paragnostic Assembly)
    Arms and Equipment Guide (optional use of sparring dummy of the master)
    Oriental Adventures (optional use of Tumble rules)

    Non-D&D material:

    John McWhorter, Words on the Move
    Sakeru Gumi commercials



    Spoiler: What did Sonic the Hedgehog say to Ferdinand when it was time to leave?
    Show

    "Gotta go, F. A. S. T.!"
    Last edited by Heliomance; 2019-11-27 at 04:50 AM.
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  28. - Top - End - #118
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quick Man
    Spoiler: This build's gonna make a whooooole lot more sense if you click on this
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    QUICK MAN

    DWN-012



    Warforged
    Alignment: LE
    Wizard 5, Warblade 1, Bloodstorm Blade 4, Swiftblade 10

    Spoiler: Build table
    Show

    Level Class Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Feats Class Features Skill Points Balance Concentration Spellcraft Craft (blacksmithing) Tumble Knowledge (arcana) Spot Listen Skill Tricks
    1 Focused Specialist Transmuter Martial Wizard 1 +0 +0 +0 +2 Point Blank Shot Dodge (bonus), specialty school (banned schools: necromancy, enchantment, illusion), immediate magic (sudden shift) 20 2 4 4 4 4
    2 FSTM Wiz 2 +1 +0 +0 +3 5 2.5 5 5 5 5
    3 FSTM Wiz 3 +1 +1 +1 +3 EWP: Talenta Boomerang 5 3 6 6 6 6
    4 FSTM Wiz 4 +2 +1 +1 +4 5 3.5 7 7 7 7
    5 FSTM Wiz 5 +2 +1 +1 +4 Rapid Shot (bonus) 5 4 8 8 8 8
    6 Warblade 1 +3 +2 +1 +4 Power Attack Maneuvers, battle clarity, weapon aptitude 7 8 9 9
    7 Bloodstorm Blade 1 +4 +4 +1 +4 Returning attacks, Throw Anything (bonus), weapon aptitude 7 10 10 4
    8 Bloodstorm Blade 2 +5 +5 +1 +4 Martial throw, thunderous throw 7 11 11 9
    9 Bloodstorm Blade 3 +6/+1 +5 +2 +5 Boomerang Daze Mobility (bonus) 7 12 12 12 2
    10 Bloodstorm Blade 4 +7/+2 +6 +2 +5 Lightning ricochet 7 13 13 13 6
    11 Swiftblade 1 +8/+3 +6 +4 +7 Swift surge +1/+0, Spring Attack (bonus) 7 14 14 14 10
    12 Swiftblade 2 +9/+4 +6 +5 +8 Two-Weapon Fighting Blurred alacrity 7 15 15 15 14
    13 Swiftblade 3 +10/+5 +7 +5 +8 Sudden casting 7 16 16 16 1 Acrobatic Backstab
    14 Swiftblade 4 +11/+6/+1 +7 +6 +9 Swift surge +1/+10, arcane reflexes 7 17 17 17 3 Back on Your Feet
    15 Swiftblade 5 +12/+7/+2 +7 +6 +9 Ironheart Aura Evasive celerity 7 18 18 18 5 Spot the Weak Point
    16 Swiftblade 6 +13/+8/+3 +8 +7 +10 Fortified hustle 7 19 19 19 7 Clarity of Vision
    17 Swiftblade 7 +14/+9/+4 +8 +7 +10 Swift surge +2/+10, Bounding Assault (bonus) 7 20 20 20 11
    18 Swiftblade 8 +15/+10/+5 +8 +8 +11 Stormguard Warrior Diligent rapidity 7 21 21 21 15
    19 Swiftblade 9 +16/+11/+6/+1 +9 +8 +11 Perpetual options 7 22 22 22 19
    20 Swiftblade 10 +17/+12/+7/+2 +9 +9 +12 Swift surge +2/+20, innervated speed 7 23 23 23 23


    Spoiler: Robot master field guide
    Show

    They say… he appeared in a doorway… Early on, I get to be a wizard and act like a wizard. Transmutation is so nice I specialized in it twice; spells solve all kinds of problems. Scribe Scroll won't let me go fast, so I trade it out for something that does (or will, at least). Robot masters don't need familiars (not that kind of master), so I take sudden shift instead. Never know when you need an alternative movement mode.

    Once I get my fundamentals in place, though, I start itching to use the boomerangs. You know, like the one built into my head. I mean, not literally that one, but ones that are just like it. They call to me. I wasn't created to just mess around with magic: I was created to stop The Man In Blue. And to do that, I need to throw more boomerangs than anyone else possibly could.

    Problem is, boomerangs don't work nicely as written. So I bring in a tool to solve the problem: bloodstorm blade! Now my Quick Boomerangs actually return to me with returning attacks. And I can use Iron Heart strikes through them, which is satisfying. And I can throw more of them, because they're fast. And then I get lightning ricochet, thereby allowing me to actually make my Quick Boomerangs quick.

    Spoiler: Fun fact
    Show
    The reason why the OG Quick Boomerang is quick is actually because it's a boomerang. The short range means that you don't run as much of a risk of running into the processor's limit of 3 projectiles on-screen at once, so they can go helluva quick. Lightning ricochet is how to represent this. These ain't just boomerangs. They're Quick Boomerangs. That's the whole point.


    Why do the boomerangs matter? Ease up on that talk, pardner. In this town, I am the law, and you will respect that or you will stand around like a dazed cretin. Yup, Boomerang Daze. Plays very nicely with the spammy style I've got going. Spam haste (I don't need to cast anything else!), spam 'rangs, life is good. Except for you. You're just standing there like the idiot you are. You're not quick on the draw at all. Or if I'm feeling merciful, I'll just use a disarming strike to knock your gun out of your shootin' hand. Your slow, slow shootin' hand. Which will still leave you dazed. You look like my brother, that flipper-and-snorkel geek. I miss that old sonuvagun… damn that Man In Blue!

    Soon, swiftblade becomes a reality and I embrace my destiny as the Quick Man. The Man In Blue don't stand a chance. What they say ain't true.

    Swift surge stacks with haste and makes me quicker than him. Blurred alacrity makes me a dodgy mofo. My circuits slow… what they say is a lie. The shots are heard, and the bullets scream death as they fly. And since the bullets scream death as they fly, I can hear them coming, and I'm fast enough to dodge them. You see how that works? I mean, he won't, but maybe you're quick enough to get it.

    Sudden casting is because I'm quick on the draw. A quick pose and I'm off to the races. I've got slots to spare. Same with arcane reflexes. I'm gonna get the drop on ya. Reach for my weapon and in turn you're reachin' for yours…

    Spoiler: The somatic component for haste
    Show


    Evasive reflexes mean The Man In Blue ain't gonna be able to shoot me, no matter which of my brothers he's stolen toys from. I'm not scared anymore. I see the faces of my brothers that have fallen before…

    Fortified hustle just plain makes sense. You can't make the Quick Man stop being quick. And since I'm eventually gonna get antimagic field under my own power, I can ensure that I'm the only quick one on the field.

    Diligent rapidity means that if I need to kite ya, I'm gonna kite ya and there's not much you can do about it. Especially since I've got a nice range increment on my Quick Boomerangs and I can still daze you. Especially especially with perpetual options. Should I throw all the boomerangs, or should I throw more than all the boomerangs? Should I cast while attacking or attack while casting? Fire a Quick Beam or a barrage of Quick Boomerangs? Move and full attack? Por que no los dos?

    And then… it happened. The Man In Blue has arrived. He thought he was clever. He thought he was "The One." He thought killing my poor, poor insecure brother Flash Man and taking his Time Stopper would give him a leg up on me. Me!

    Turns out what they say ain't true. Death don't wear blue. He can fall.

    Rest in peace, Flashy. I got back yer Time Stopper from him. Might be too late for ya, but I'll take good care of it anyway.

    Flashy always wanted to be like The Man In Blue… now they're both in the same condition, I s'pose. You'll get your moment together now, you old miseryguts.

    I'm not crying.
    Robot Masters don't… cry…
    poor Flashy…



    Spoiler: That's quite the feat
    Show
    • Point Blank Shot: Prereq for bloodstorm blade, but every +1 counts early on.
    • Dodge: Prereq for swiftblade, but every +1 counts early on.
    • Exotic Weapon Proficiency: What, you want me to throw my Quick Boomerangs without proficiency?
    • Rapid Shot: I'm the danged Quick Man. I'm gonna throw more 'rangs than you.
    • Power Attack: I can treat thrown weapons as melee and I'm only a few points off full BAB. I'm also a focused specialist transmuter with slots to spare and access to wraithstrike. Yeah, those 'rangs are gonna hit pretty damn hard. Makes Boomerang Daze better, too.
    • Throw Anything: Well, it didn't cost me nothin'.
    • Boomerang Daze: Gee, I dunno, tacking a save-or-lose-your-turn on every single attack I make in my big suite of attacks, is that worth it? This is kind of my main jam.
    • Mobility: Prereq for swiftblade, and it's also not bad if something decides to get cute and get up in my grill.
    • Spring Attack: You know what's cool about treating thrown attacks as melee? This works. There's no actual definition of "melee weapon" in the PHB aside from on pg. 112: "melee weapons are used for making melee attacks." Which I am, thanks to thunderous throw. This. Works. Helps a ton if there's any cover on the battlefield: run out, throw a Quick Boomerang, and run behind cover.
    • Two-Weapon Fighting: I'm the danged Quick Man. I'm gonna throw more 'rangs than you.
    • Ironheart Aura: Mostly just a prereq for Stormguard Warrior.
    • Bounding Assault: Like Spring Attack, but more attacks!
    • Stormguard Warrior: When I turn on Flashy's Time Stopper (*sniff*), this is a fun option. Maybe I can't damage anyone while it's on, but making a whole bunch of non-damaging touch attacks (which, thanks to thunderous throw, I can make at range despite still being "melee") isn't damaging anyone. Then time starts again and my Quick Boomerangs are massively powered up for a full attack. I love that image, to be honest. Why am I so deadly? Because I'm basically going to stop time, use it for target practice on you, and then follow through faster than you can comprehend.


    Spoiler: Maneuvers
    Show

    • Punishing stance: Prereq for Ironheart Aura and bloodstorm blade. Plus, you know, bonus damage is nice. Turn it off if you're getting hit a ton, but if you're successfully kiting (or once blurred alacrity is online), -2 AC is worth the extra pain.
    • Steel wind: Primarily used as fodder for returning attacks.
    • Disarming strike: Very nice to use at range. Kind of a Batman-like feel.
    • Steely strike: Sometimes ya just need to hit.



    Spoiler: Magic
    Show


    Level 0ths 1sts 2nds 3rds 4ths 5ths 6ths
    Level 1 6 4 - - - - -
    Level 2 7 5 - - - - -
    Level 3 7 5 4 - - - -
    Level 4 7 6 5 - - - -
    Level 5 7 6 5 4 - - -
    Level 6 7 6 5 4 - - -
    Level 7 7 6 5 4 - - -
    Level 8 7 6 5 4 - - -
    Level 9 7 6 5 4 - - -
    Level 10 7 6 5 4 - - -
    Level 11 7 6 5 4 - - -
    Level 12 7 6 6 5 - - -
    Level 13 7 7 6 5 3 - -
    Level 14 7 7 6 5 3 - -
    Level 15 7 7 6 6 4 - -
    Level 16 7 7 7 6 4 3 -
    Level 17 7 7 7 6 4 3 -
    Level 18 7 7 7 6 5 4 -
    Level 19 7 7 7 7 5 4 3
    Level 20 7 7 7 7 5 4 3

    Note: This table includes extra spells for 16 INT and also includes bonus spells for being a focused specialist.

    A few highlighted spells:
    • Haste: I mean, of course. Note that I cast nothing else at ECL 10.
    • Heroics: Nice for bootstrapping into something you don't have just yet. Improved Two-Weapon Fighting, Precise Shot, Quick Draw, Martial Study, whatever's needed just at this moment. (SpC)
    • Wraithstrike: This makes you truly deadly with Power Attack. (SpC)
    • Greater magic weapon: (Note: don't cast at ECL 10.) Lasts basically all day; makes the 'rangs better.
    • Mage armor: Not transmutation, but it pretty quickly lasts nearly all day, so there's not much reason not to cast it.
    • Nerveskitter: There are hardly any better ways to be quick on the draw.
    • Antimagic field: This is awesome once fortified hustle is available.
    • Alter self: On a construct, eh? Hmm…
    • Unseen servant: This is mostly amusing because disarming strike works at range. Just have your servant go fetch the weapon they dropped.
    • Blink, greater: Hard to top this kind of defense. (SpC)
    • Repair damage line: A little bit of self-healing can matter. Get on a wand if you can. (SpC/ECS)
    • Unseen crafter: Fun for healing at night. At 1 day/level, doesn't cost much in terms of resources. (RoE)
    • Stat-boosting spells: Great for you and for your allies. Hitting more often and hitting harder are both good uses of long-duration transmutation slots.


    There are many others, of course. Transmuters are great party buffers and great out-of-combat problem solvers.


    Spoiler: Get equipped
    Show
    For nonmagical equipment, Quick Man just needs his trusty Quick Boomerangs: Talenta boomerangs, of course. Fits the visuals. A spellbook too, naturally, but that goes without saying for a wizard.

    If magic items are available, stat boosters (DEX, INT, and STR) all help out, magic enhancements on the Quick Boomerangs are highly desirable, standard defensive gear (save boosters and AC boosters in particular) will never go amiss, and of course every 'forged wants a wand or two of repair light damage.

    Metamagic rods of Extend are super valuable for this kind of character.

    Although Quick Man has lots of slots thanks to being a focused specialist, more is always better, so pearls of power and rings of wizardry might be worth the investment if that's an option. Pearls of power in particular can help with non-transmutation spells.

    Of course, magic covers a heck of a lot of bases, so even in an item-poor environment, all Quick Man needs are the 'rangs.


    Spoiler: Why take this instead of that?
    Show
    Why not ban evocation? Simple thematics. Quick Man needs the ability to create the occasional line of death (even if it's not the primary strategy). Them Quick Beams are iconic. What else can we burn this town with if it comes to it? So I keep the occasional big line attack on tap just to get the visuals right. (No, I don't use any lightning bolts at level 10. That's all haste all the time. But afterwards? Maybe one or two line attacks here and there sneak their way in.)

    Why not use the Xen'drik boomerang? I'm sorry, you're looking for Shadow Man. He'll be built sometime next game. (Also, the tactical flexibility of a longer range increment is more important than the average extra 1 damage. Do recall that you pick targets in a full attack one at a time; if your first target fails their save and becomes dazed, you can switch targets on subsequent attacks to spread out the control a little bit.)

    Why not take Quick Draw? Because it's just plain not needed once I get bloodstorm blade 4. Until then, if I really need it, I'm a focused specialist transmuter. I can easily spare a 2nd level transmutation slot for heroics if it's that important. I don't need Quick Draw to be quick on the draw. I'm still the Quick Man.

    Why not Boomerang Ricochet? Space, basically. It's easier to just get more attacks (Rapid Shot, TWF) than to ensure that targets are adjacent to each other. Plus, I also mean feat space. I'm not made of feats over here.



    Craft: Blacksmithing is just for self-healing, of course. The skill tricks feel thematic, and most of my skills don't need to be 100% maxed by that level, so it gives me somewhere to stick my skill points without just starting over.


    Spoiler: Prereqs
    Show
    Prestige classes:
    Bloodstorm blade
    • Balance 8 ranks: met at ECL 6
    • Point Blank Shot: met at ECL 1
    • One Iron Heart stance: met at ECL 6
    • One Iron Heart strike: met at ECL 6


    Swiftblade
    • BAB +3: met at ECL 6
    • Able to cast haste: met at ECL 5
    • Spellcraft 6: met at ECL 3
    • Concentration 6: met at ECL 3
    • Dodge: met at ECL 1
    • Mobility: met at ECL 9
    • Proficient with at least one martial weapon: met at ECL 6


    Feats

    • Point Blank Shot: N/A
    • Dodge: DEX 13. Met immediately.
    • Exotic Weapon Proficiency: BAB +1. Met at ECL 2.
    • Rapid Shot: DEX 13, Point Blank Shot. Met after taking PBS at level 1.
    • Power Attack: STR 13. Met immediately.
    • Throw Anything: DEX 15, "proficiency with weapon" (?), BAB +2. Met at ECL 4.
    • Boomerang Daze: Proficiency with boomerang, BAB +4. Met at ECL 7.
    • Mobility: DEX 13, Dodge. Met after taking Dodge at level 1.
    • Spring Attack: DEX 13, Dodge, Mobility, Spring Attack, BAB +4. Met after taking Mobility at level 9 (even though the prereqs are ignored).
    • Two-Weapon Fighting: DEX 15. Met immediately.
    • Bounding Assault: DEX 13, Dodge, Mobility, Spring Attack, BAB +12. Met at ECL 15 (even though the prereqs are ignored).
    • Ironheart Aura: One Iron Heart stance. Met with Punishing Stance at level 6.
    • Stormguard Warrior: Proficient with Iron Heart preferred weapon, BAB +6, two Iron Heart maneuvers, Ironheart Aura. Met after taking Ironheart Aura at level 15.


    Spoiler: Non-acoustic version of the video from the beginning
    Show
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uUuE2YSBHo4
    [ED: Apologies, this was an embedded video in the original submission, but the forum apparently only allows one video per post so I had to change it to a link. ~Heliomance]


    Spoiler: Sources
    Show

    Complete Mage: Focused Specialist
    Complete Scoundrel: Skill tricks
    Complete Warrior: Throw Anything (reprinted in Tome of Battle)
    Eberron Campaign Setting: Warforged, Talenta boomerang
    Online: Swiftblade
    PHB2: Instant Magic (sudden shift), Bounding Assault
    Races of Eberron: Boomerang Daze
    Tome of Battle: Bloodstorm Blade, Warblade, Maneuvers, Ironheart Aura, Stormguard Warrior
    Unearthed Arcana: Martial Wizard (fighter bonus feats)

    Several spells are referenced above; they are cited in-line when not in the PHB.

    Other feats, spells, classes, etc. originate in the PHB.

    I would like to thank The Megas for providing the inspiration. I basically listened to The Quick And The Blue a thousand times while writing this, and no, I'm not sick of it yet. I'm not affiliated with them in any way, but I heartily, heartily recommend you check them out. There's definitely a few parts of this build that were inspired (or affected) by songs other than just TQATB.

    Credit to Capcom for creating the Mega Man series, which inspired The Megas and some other parts of this build. And of course, the images used originate with Capcom as well.
    urse, the images used originate with Capcom as well. [/spoiler][/QUOTE]
    Last edited by Heliomance; 2019-11-27 at 04:51 AM.
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    The only person in the past two pages who has known what (s)he has been talking about is Heliomance.
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  29. - Top - End - #119
    Titan in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimisation Challenge in the Playground C

    Entry number 8:

    Quote Originally Posted by Persephone Scourge

    Persephone Scourge

    Spoiler: A Cautionary Tale
    Show


    Spoiler: parents just don't understand
    Show


    "Are you nervous about your first day?" Persephone's dad asked. He refilled his wine glass as though he weren't coiled and ready to strike regardless of her response.

    "Not really," she said and picked at her fingernails with her knife, a bad habit she knew would get under her mother's skin and perhaps earn her a lecture.

    "Are you sure, Purse?" her mother said. "No questions you have for me or your father about any particular . . . forbidden types of magic?" she said as naturally as she could, which wasn't very natural at all.

    "Mo-om!" Persephone groaned. "Come on, you've already given me the haste talk. Dad gave it to me too when we were in the carriage to visit granny for Discordsmight." So she couldn't get away.

    "Well, we only want you to be prepared because we love you and we're we care about you. Your grandfather told me he saw someone in his sect use it once. It made his hair turn white overnight. Every time you use it, it takes years off your life. Hextor doesn't look kindly on His faithful making themselves weaker on purpose, no matter the short term gain," her mother said.

    "I kno-ow!" Persephone rolled her eyes. "Relax, mom, I'll stick to normal stuff like making pacts with devils and heedless blood orgies with anything that crosses my path."

    "That's all we ask," her father said with a guarded kindness in his eyes. He took her mother's hand in his. Gross. "Would you like to carve, Purse?"

    Persephone took the knife, hoping that once it was time to eat, it'd mean an end to the lectures. "Hextor, we thank ourselves for showing greater strength than what lies before us. Through Your teachings, we uphold the order of the world and remember always that justice is a shadow the strong cast upon the weak. Until I lie upon the table of another, I partake of this meat in Your name." Persephone put up her ceremonial hood and cut the throat of the sacrificial victim that lay bound and gagged on their dinner table. She dredged a pretzel roll in the blood from his neck and offered it to her father, the eldest at the table. He took it without thanks, as was his right, and chewed it.

    "Tangled flail, I wish Thayan wasn't so salty," he said and sipped his wine, setting the hollow skull cup down on the blood red tablecloth once it was empty.

    "We can only hope someone else is slower next time, dear," her mother said. "We'll get something special when Purse is home for Blooding Week. Won't that be nice?"

    Persephone nodded and forced a smile.


    Spoiler: clerical error[/spoiler
    Show

    Persephone pored over her notes for the thousandth time. The light from the continunal flame on her holy symbol flickered steadily despite the wear on the iron brooch. A few of the arrows in Hextor's hand were bent. It had belonged to her grandfather, once, before he'd fallen for the final time in battle. Now it was hers. A knock at the door wrested her attention from the details of extraplanar gravity.

    "Hey." A Rashemi girl gave her a chin nod from beneath her furred cap. Persephone didn't recognize the pelt. The ermine trim complemented the girl's blood-red eyes beautifully. Persephone felt her own blood rising to her cheek and knew she couldn't blame it on the cold.

    "Oh, um, hey. Your eyes are, uh-- you're one of those demonsworn knights, right? I've heard all kinds of stuff about you," Persephone said lamely.

    She laughed, a sound literally like bells tinkling. Probably some obscure bard spell. The girl had the look of a bard about her, though Persephone knew it would be rude to ask. "Hellbound knight, actually. My sister's demonsworn if that's more your speed," she said with a wink of that ruby orb, like a ripe pomegranate seed.

    "I'm sorry, I didn't mean--" Persephone didn't have a chance to finish. The girl came in from the hall and sat on her war chest.

    "Relax, I'm just pulling your reins. Your door was open, so I figured you might want to hang out. Me and my sister and a bunch of us are gonna go to the faculty monster farm and try to get some practicum in. She caddies there on weekends, so she's got a set of keys. You wanna come? I found getting my head around some of Konek's stuff was easier with a little blood under my fingernails," she said with a nod toward Persephone's messy notes.

    "Am I that obvious? I couldn't figure out what he was talking about when he was on summons." Persephone lifted her hands from the eagle's blood she'd written her notes in, still damp and tacky.

    "Hey, it's not your fault, Konek's the worst. I hear he was a lot better when he was alive. Whatever he turned into rotted his brain I bet. You can have my notes from last year if you can find them. My room's kind of a mess." Her fur boots were almost touching Persephone's elf leather sandals.

    It sounded like an invitation. "Sure," she said as evenly as she could.

    "It's a date."


    Spoiler: haste makes waste
    Show

    Persephone wasn't sure what they'd be killing on the farm, so predictably overprepared, bringing her army surplus backpack with a zillion pounds of gear for every imaginable obstacle. She felt ridiculous when her canteen clacked against her thigh as she tried to keep up with the upperclassman, whose name she'd finally learned was Stennefra. A neglected graveyard loomed before them, circled by a huge wrought iron fence. It looked like a wonderful place for a picnic. Her parents' wedding portrait had been in someplace much like it.

    "Don't worry, it's just a style," Stennefra said.

    "A what?"

    "A fashion?" Stennefra reached down her shirt and drew out a key with a death's head design. "Y'know, one of those illusion whosits."

    "A glamer."

    "Yeah, that's it." She opened the gate and the inside revealed itself to them, rolling green hillocks bathed in sun despite the late hour. "Welcome to the teacher's lounge," Stennefra said with an elbow just under Persephone's ironwood cuirass.

    The others were waiting for them, idly sniping at monsters with rays or tearing into them with weapons.

    "Look who finally showed up," said a girl who looked exactly like Stennefra but for her eyes, black instead of red. She introduced herself as Nyx and exposed a mouth of teeth small and triangular at least three rows deep, like a shark's when she smiled.

    "Come on, I was just saying hello to the fresh meat," Stennefra said and playfully snapped her teeth.

    "We just finished the fourth, you wanna join us for five?" Nyx asked. Persephone nodded and tried not to look too eager.

    "I've got um, cold iron and silver and other stuff. What's on five?" she asked. Nyx laughed, a reassuringly unwholesome sound.

    "What would be the fun in telling you?" Nyx touched a glowing stone with a 5 on it with her high heeled boot and monsters coalesced around them, some Persephone had never seen before.

    "Knowledge monkey, do your thing," Nyx shouted to a hadozee in a tree above the monsters.

    "They're spellwarped donkeys, and you're a pathetic racist," he said. "All right, you guys'll be hitting harder now. Donkeys are indegenous to flat and arid climes and are especially comfortable in scrub areas. They subsist on fruits and grasses."

    "Any like, special powers or anything?" Nyx said and shot a ray of light through the first donkey's brain, killing it instantly.

    "They're donkeys, stupid." The hadozee transformed the earth below them to a giant, muscled fist (also hadozee) and strangled the nearest donkey.

    "This guy. Hey, could use some H down here," Nyx said, leaping over a donkey kick.

    "I've gotta do everything." Stennefra swirled her arms, the leather fringe that hung along her bracers dancing in hypnotic patterns as she moved. Persephone wasn't sure whether that part was magic or not. "Hey guys, this is a buff. Do you all consent to it?"

    "Gimme," Nyx said, driving her thumbs into a donkey's eyes.

    "Yo," said the hadozee in the tree, shooting an arrow with the hand at the end of his ankle.

    "Sorry, I conscientiously object to divine magic. No, thank you," murmured an elf who was doing his best to hide from the donkeys behind the trunk of the tree.

    "I still can't believe you joined the Athar. You're so screwed on next week's test on the pact primeval," the hadozee taunted from above.

    "Don't mock my beliefs, you sheep," the elf said and let out a yelp as a stealthful donkey bit him from behind.

    "I accept," Persephone said, balling her fists around her grandfather's flail. Magic wrapped around her with a solemn hum, and the world around her, but for her allies, slowed. She stepped between donkeys on all sides and caved their heads in as easy as a bound sacrificial victim. She scarcely knew what had happened before the glowing 5 on the lodestone dimmed, signifying the onslaught was over.

    "It's just theory," the elf said. "Not like it's a practical exam. As long as I can memorize all the names and dates all that nonsense was supposed to have happened, I'll squeak by."

    "You have to be the dumbest person at this school." Nyx quaffed a potion and a hoofprint disappeared from her cheek.

    "What was that amazing spell you just cast on everyone?" Persephone asked Stennefra, feeling like there were still stars in her eyes from the tiny motes of light that had seemed to stand still as they scythed through their enemies.

    "Make that second dumbest," Nyx said. "Have you really never cast haste?"

    "Oh, no, of course not." Persephone felt sick, despite all this wonderful blood staining her toe to tip. "Haste is really dangerous. It turns your hair white and kills you. I'd never cast that on a friend."

    "Haha what." The elf came out now that it was safe. "Look around, no one's hair is white. And if it killed you, how would anyone ever learn to cast it? You see what I mean? This religion stuff rots your brain. Where'd you hear a stupid thing like that?"

    Persephone was grateful for the sheen of gore on her face to hide her blush. "My grandfather, Knight Tyrant in Hextor's army told me so. If you besmirch his honor again, I'll show you how real Hextor's power is."

    Stennefra interposed herself. "Relax, we're all friends here." She took off her fur hat and shook out her raven locks. Not a streak of white anywhere. "See for yourself. You aced that spell ID pop quiz the other day, you can see I don't have any cosmetic glamers on. I don't want to talk bad about your folks, but maybe they were confusing it with a different spell? There's like a million of them. I don't think clerics can learn it. Maybe it was something that just sounded like haste."

    "I guess," Persephone said, not wanting to make enemies this early on, especially ones stronger than her. "But that's what it does? It makes you faster in a fight?"

    "Yeah. Why'd you think it was called that?" Stennefra mopped at the sweat on her brow with a handkerchief.

    "Because it like, hastened your demise."

    To Stennefra's credit, she did an admirable job trying not to laugh.


    Spoiler: how sausage is made
    Show

    Persephone took to haste like it was her first time doing magic. When practicing her weapon drills in the dojo, she found herself casting it sometimes without even thinking. Touching her foil to the instructor that extra time or two always gave her a little thrill. It helped with other areas of study as well. When she was doing her lab for summoning, it let her cast another spell to contain the horrible thing she'd made just as quick as she'd called it. That really impressed the other students. Even Professor Konek raised what was left of his eyebrow on his rotting visage. When the others asked how Persephone was able to do that, she hadn't had a good answer. Konek said he recalled that's how the spell used to work, a very long time ago, and theorized Persephone might be casting some primordial version of the spell. He then drifted into some personal anecdote that ate up the rest of the class, so her curiosity remained unquenched.

    Persephone couldn't believe how quickly the term had flown by. That, she couldn't blame entirely on the forbidden magic she'd learned. This was the only thing she'd left out of the letters she wrote home to her parents every week. Everything else, her qualms about being ready for her test next month on conjuration, the food in the canteen, her relationship with Stennefra (and her willingness to convert to revering Hextor down the line), everything except the fact that she'd been been using the one spell her parents had asked her not to. There was a while when she'd cast nothing but haste. She'd been so attuned to it, it was like a part of her now, like the blood of her inferiors she had taken into herself over the years.

    She packed the sword she and Stennefra had forged together in metal shop to show her family she had some practical skills. She knew her granny didn't care much for bards. Persephone checked around her bed for her sacrificial dagger. She last remembered using it to open her mail. That, she might keep to herself.

    Stennefra walked into her room. The two of them had long since dispensed with knocking. "You left this in my room. wouldn't want to go without it," she teased.

    Persephone grabbed it and tucket it into her belt. "Thanks. Granny would've killed me if I hadn't brought it." Stennefra kissed her forehead. "What, and she won't kill you if you bring it?"

    "Well, she will, but not like, kill-kill. It's fun, you'll like it. It's like the farm. She breaks into the house a day or two before we're expecting her and then pops out and attacks us when we're not expecting it. Listen to me, I must sound crazy."

    Stennefra nodded gamely. "How's my scarification?" she raised her palm, a crooked symbol of Hextor slightly too far to the left of center.

    "It's perfect." Persephone locked up and they went down the hall to wait in line to use the teleportation circle.

    "You're sure you don't mind visiting my family this weekend?" Persephone asked for the hundredth time.

    "Yeah. My parents are just gonna be picking grapes. Nothing special on the calendar. It's fine. Really. And I promise I won't use any H while we're there. I'll be good," Stennefra said with a wink.

    The two of them arrived in Persephone's kitchen with her mother stirring a pot of blood, making the air rich and coppery and delicious.

    "Oh, you must be Stennefra. Come and give me a hand. Add a measure of those oats and a half measure of the brown sugar. That's my secret ingredient when I make black pudding. If you tell anyone, no one will ever find your body," her mother said.

    Persephone bit her tongue before she could spit out that her mother was being lame and embarrassing. Stennefra had told her being more patient with her family might help smooth things over. Stennefra was silent a beat and then laughed.

    "Of course, Matriarch Scourge. Just gotta pay homage real quick." Stennefra knelt before the shrine to Hextor in the corner and pricked her finger on the edge of her knife and bled onto the empty dish clutched in His six arms. While Stennefra's back was turned, Persephone's mother gave an appreciative nod.

    Stennefra walked over to the hob and a dark shape dropped from the ceiling. Persephone recognized the leather cowl obscuring the figure's features, hooked and sharp like a bird of prey.

    "Blessed Blooding, granny!" Persephone said and got on the balls of her feet in a battle stance.

    "Blessed Blooding, you li'l anklebiter. Bringin' loved ones over when kinfolk're visitin'? Yer showin' weakness. I taught you better'n that." Granny kicked Stennefra in the tailbone with her hobnailed boot and knocked her to the floor.

    Stennefra coughed and caught her breath. "Oh, we're starting already? I've heard so much about you. You'll have to show me how to make those sesame buns you sent Purse last month. They were so good." She drew her viola and conjured her collapsible bow. With an evil hiss she drew the bow across the strings and launched an invisible auger of force that bored into granny's gut.

    Persephone drew her sword, resting her thumb on the arrow motif on its guard. She slashed across granny's back and narrowly cracked her armored shell, baring the demon flesh beneath.

    "Oh, ma, do we have to play this game while I'm cooking?" her mother whined and guarded the pot of black pudding from their roughhousing.

    "Ain't a game, kid. We do this because we don't know when death's comin' for us." She kicked Stennefra's bow from her hand and grabbed a cleaver from over the stove. "Looks like yer goin' in the pot, kid."

    Persephone acted before she knew it, and H flowed through her blood and her bones. She leapt through the air and sliced off granny's arm at the elbow. As she cursed and leaked her foul-smelling black ichor on the floor, thick as mud, Persephone helped Stennefra up.

    Her mother gasped and put her hand over her chest, even as the blood and oats boiled over.

    "Purse, was that--tell me that wasn't--" her mother couldn't bring herself to say it. She already had tears in her eyes.

    Granny grit her teeth as her arm started to grow back with a wet, disgusting sound Persephone for once found disquieting. "H-ste! My own kin usin' h-ste against me! How dare you! Get out of this house!" She gripped at the edge of her cloak, threatening to tear it off and discard the human shape she took for her family's comfort.

    Stennefra saw Persephone was frozen. "Look, it's not her fault. I'm the one who--"

    "Both of you, get out! I ain't havin' this magic in my house!"

    Persephone touched Stennefra's wrist and spoke the word of recall to take them back to school.

    "Sorry," she said once they were back in her room.

    Stennefra shrugged. "It happens."


    Spoiler: time goes by[/spoiler
    Show

    Persephone knocked on the door for the new freshman's room.

    "Cramming for Konek?" she asked, recognizing the spidery writing and diagrams even from ten paces.

    "Awaiting execution more like. My family's gonna kill me if I fail this final. Sorry to get heavy on you this early in the term. I probably sound nuts."

    "Not at all. A bunch of us are going to the farm later to blow off some steam. You should come."

    "Are you sure? I got a lot of notes left."

    Persephone smiled. "Trust me. You'll love it."


    Spoiler: stub
    Show

    LE human cleric of hextor 4/ordained champion 5/swiftblade 1/nar demonbinder 1/swiftblade 10


    Spoiler: abilities
    Show

    str 13
    dex 13
    con 14
    int 12
    wis 14
    cha 14 (increases here)


    Spoiler: table
    Show

    Level Class Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Skills Feats Class Features
    1st cleric 1 +0 +2 +0 +2 concentration 4, k (religion) 4, k (planes) 4, spellcraft 4 heretic of the faith (celerity, greatsword), iron will rebuke undead, domains (war and celerity), spontaneous domain casting (celerity)
    2nd cleric 2 +1 +3 +0 +3 concentration 1 (5), k (religion) 1 (5), k (planes) 1 (5), spellcraft 1 (5)
    3rd cleric 3 +2 +3 +1 +3 k (religion) 1 (6), k (planes) 1 (6), spellcraft 1 (6), sm 1 power attack
    4th cleric 4 +3 +4 +1 +4 concentration 1 (6), k (religion) 1 (7), k (planes) 1 (7), sm 1 (2)
    5th ordained champion 1 +4 +6 +1 +6 intimidate 4 expeditious dodge (bonus), mobility (bonus) Bonus domain (domination), combat feats (celerity and domination), continued advancement, modified spontaneous casting
    6th ordained champion 2 +5 +7 +1 +7 concentration 1 (7), intimidate 1 (5), k (planes) 2 (8) spring attack, diehard (bonus) smite
    7th ordained champion 3 +6/+1 +7 +2 +7 concentration 2 (9), k (planes) 2 (10) channel spell, divine bulwark
    8th ordained champion 4 +7/+2 +8 +2 +8 concentration 1 (10), tumble 3 fist of the gods, rapid spontaneous casting
    9th ordained champion 5 +8/+3 +8 +2 +8 tumble 4 (7) divine might holy warrior, war caster
    10th swiftblade 1 +9/+4 +8 +4 +10 balance 5, tumble 1 (8) spell focus (conjuration) (bonus) spring attackbonus feat, swift surge +1/+0ft
    11th nar demonbinder 1 +9/+4 +8 +4 +12 concentration 4 (14) fiendish familiar, inimical casting
    12th swiftblade 2 +10/+5 +8 +5 +13 balance 5, concentration 1 (15) arcane disciple (celerity to nar demonbinder) Blurred alacrity
    13th swiftblade 3 +11/+6/+1 +9 +5 +13 concentration 1 (16), jump 5 Sudden casting
    14th swiftblade 4 +12/+7/+2 +9 +6 +14 concentration 1 (17),tumble 3 (13) swift concentration Arcane reflexes, swift surge +1/+10 ft.
    15th swiftblade 5 +13/+7/+3 +9 +6 +14 concentration 1 (18), tumble 3 (16), nimble stand practiced spellcaster (nar demonbinder) Evasive celerity
    16th swiftblade 6 +14/+9/+4 +10 +7 +15 concentration 1 (19), tumble 3 (19), back on your feet fortified hustle
    17th swiftblade 7 +15/+10/+5 +10 +7 +15 concentration 1 (20), k (arcana) 2, tumble 1 (20), acrobatic backstab Bounding Assault, swift surge +2/+10 ft.
    18th swiftblade 8 +16/+11/+6/+1 +10 +8 +16 concentration 1 (21), k (arcana) 4 (8), tumble 1 (21) planar touchstone (Oxyrhynchus) Diligent rapidity
    19th swiftblade 9 +17/+12/+7/+2 +11 +8 +16 concentration 1 (22), k (arcana) 4 (10), tumble 1 (22) Perpetual options
    20th swiftblade 10 +18/+13/+8/+3 +11 +9 +17 concentration 1 (23), k (arcana) 4 (14), tumble 1 (23) Innervated speed, swift surge +2/+20 ft.

    Spoiler: spells
    Show

    Spoiler: cleric spells/day
    Show

    Level 0lvl 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
    1st 3 1+1 - - - - - - - -
    2nd 4 2+1 - - - - - - - -
    3rd 4 2+1 1+1 - - - - - - -
    4th 5 3+1 2+1 - - - - - - -
    5th 5 3+1 2+1 - - - - - - -
    6th 5 3+1 2+1 1+1 - - - - - -
    7th 5 3+1 3+1 2+1 - - - - - -
    8th 5 3+1 3+1 2+1 - - - - - -
    9th 6 4+1 3+1 2+1 1+1 - - - - -


    Spoiler: nar demonbinder spells/day
    Show

    Level 0lvl 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
    11th - - - - 2 1 - - - -
    12th - - - - 2 2 - - - -
    13th - - - - 3 2 1 - - -
    14th - - - - 3 2 1 - - -
    15th - - - - 3 3 2 - - -
    16th - - - - 3 3 2 1 - -
    17th - - - - 3 3 2 1 - -
    18th - - - - 4 3 3 2 - -
    19th - - - - 4 4 3 2 1 -
    20th - - - - 4 4 3 2 1 -


    Spoiler: nar demonbinder spells known
    Show

    Level 0lvl 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
    11th - - - - 3 1 - - - -
    12th - - - - 4 2 - - - -
    13th - - - - 4 2 1 - - -
    14th - - - - 4 2 1 - - -
    15th - - - - 4 3 2 - - -
    16th - - - - 4 3 2 1 - -
    17th - - - - 4 3 2 1 - -
    18th - - - - 4 4 3 2 - -
    19th - - - - 4 4 3 2 1 -
    20th - - - - 4 4 3 2 1 -
    four 4s
    haste, lesser planar binding, summon monster IV, magic circle against good
    four 5s
    plane shift, summon monster V, dispel good, spell resistance
    three 6s
    planar binding, summon monster VI, fiendform
    two 7s
    blasphemy, summon monster VII
    one 8
    greater planar binding


    Spoiler: playtips
    Show

    Spoiler: 5
    Show

    Buckle up, because this isn't your father's cleric of Hextor. Heretic of the faith lets you grab the celerity domain for cool spells (expeditious retreat, cat's grace, blur, and haste are the ones you'll be accessing as a cleric) plus for now it gives you +10 to your land speed which stacks with other stuff by virtue of being untyped making you highly mobile.

    Heretic of the faith also lets you change your weapon to the more gish-friendly greatsword to put your power attack to work for you.

    Iron will shores you up defensively, and spontaneous domain casting means you can use your domain slot for war, safe in the knowledge that you can throw celerity in whenever you like.

    The very cool ordained champion prc is already online by level 5, rare among prcs. It grants you the domination domain, adding command, enthrall, suggestion, and dominate person to your cleric list. You miss out on the domain power and ditch celerity domain's speed boost, but it's worth it. The taxes for swiftblade, expeditious dodge (which is identical to dodge for prerequisites) and mobility, are both fighter bonus feats, so you can purchase them as bonus feats by forsaking your domain powers. pretty good deal. It also advances your rebuking and lets you cast war domain spells spontaneously too if you want, which is super.

    Hop around, chop people into tiny pieces, and use your domains to augment your versatility both as a caster and a brute. Things will only get better.

    Spoiler: 10
    Show

    Ordained champion has given what it has to give, and boy is it a lot. You pick up diehard to further shore up your survivability. Channel spell allows you to prebuff with powerful offensive effects or even statuses that normally aren't single target. Extremely handy when an enemy buffs with ray deflection. This synergizes well with your extra actions from swiftblade later on. Speaking of synergy, since ordained champion provides access to ride, you can use skilled city dweller to change this into the more useful tumble, allowing you to spend swiftblade points elsewhere.

    Divine bulwark grants dr when you need to beef up your defenses. Fist of the gods will give you a boost to your melee damage, which is what you're all about. When spontaneously casting war domain spells you can do so as a swift. Holy warrior can put your wis into play instead of your strength to greater increase melee damage, and your cl improves when casting war spells.

    At 9, you unlock 4th level slots and are able to cast haste, so for this level, you must put your additional options on hold for your 4s. You can only prepare haste in your domain slot, but you can spontaneously convert your prepared 4s into haste, which you must do and can thanks to spontaneous domain casting. Your very next level is swiftblade, so your casting is restricted for the shortest possible time.

    You take spring attack at 6 with a feat slot so you can get spell focus (conjuration) as a bonus at 10 in preparation for nar demonbinder. You are no longer flat-footed while balancing thanks to swiftblade's skills

    Enjoy y our increased mobility and greater access to spells alongside your boosted melee power. Later levels improve this synergy.

    Spoiler: 15
    Show

    Swiftblade can only progress arcane casting, so this is the end of your journey as a cleric. It is the beginning as a nar demonbinder. Swiftblade grants 6 levels of casting. That, alongside 1 level of nar demonbinder allows you to complete 100% of its spellcasting advancement, losing nothing.

    Thanks to earlier groundwork adding celerity as a domain available to your patron deity, Hextor, you are able to select arcane disciple (celerity) and learn spells from it as a nar demonbinder, most importantly, haste as a 4. Now you have access to it to cast normally and later use for innervated speed using your higher level slots, since you are entitled to one slot at each spell level. Due to you being a spontaneous caster, you can cast this as often as needed. Practiced spellcaster beefs up your caster level to get it as high as possible to allow more use out of your spell effects.

    In addition to this, nar demonbinder offers a great number of powerful summons. Summoning monsters is one of the best things you can do with your extra actions while enjoying enhanced haste from swiftblade especially while under innervated speed. Your imp familiar provides a great deal of utility as well, able to fly, be invisible, scout, use wands, speak, have opposable thumbs, use wands, and more, plus enjoy haste alongside you.

    Blurred alacrity makes you harder to hit, sudden casting lets you make better use of your extra actions, and evasive celerity helps out against targeted effects, making you very hard to pin down.

    Spring around the battlefield with the aid of your devils, 6th level spells including planar binding, and destroy enemies with melee when needed.

    Spoiler: 20
    Show

    Swiftblade has allowed you to complete nar demonbinder's casting progression, granting you access to the powerful blasphemy (which you can cast as any of its variants depending on what kind of enemies you encounter, damaging all alignments depending on your whim thanks to inimical casting) and the extremely important greater planar binding, enabling access to a variety of useful and dangerous monsters.

    Bounding assault in tandem with planar touchstone oxyrhynchus allows extra attacks when catching enemies flat footed, which will happen often thanks to your bonuses to initiative. Acrobatic backstab provides another way to render enemies flat-footed, which thanks to your high tumble mod, you will be able to do reliably. Tumble continues to work for you with nimble stand and back on your feet to avoid the prone condition as much as possible since being tripped sucks.

    You can use your extra actions for a great number of things due to your complementary classes, boosting your melee prowess with ordained champion, casting spells more quickly from it and supplementing them with things from nar demonbinder and combining either or both of these with full attacks enhanced by oxyrhynchus.

    Your mobility continues unleashed and you can tumble more or less at will now due to ranks, dex bonus, synergy, and the freedom of movement effect from swiftblade.

    Leap around, cast spells, summon monsters, and chop enemies with your blade, it's all possible now.


    Spoiler: sources
    Show

    srd: human, cleric, iron will, spell focus, power attack, mobility, diehard
    power of faerun: heretic of the faith
    complete champion: ordained champion
    online: swiftblade
    phb2: spontaneous domain casting
    complete scoundrel: skill tricks
    cityscape web enhancement
    complete divine: arcane disciple
    complete arcane: practiced spellcaster
    complete warrior: divine might
    planar handbook: planar touchstone
    races of the wild: expeditious dodge
    unapproachable east: nar demonbinder
    Last edited by Heliomance; 2019-11-27 at 04:46 AM.
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    Entry number 9:

    Quote Originally Posted by Rukamuk
    Rukamuk

    Venerable Desert Loredrake DWK Battle Sorcerer 4/Swiftblade 10/Abjurant Champion 5/ Paragnostic Apostle 1
    Spoiler: blocks of text
    Show

    Desert Kobold: (SRD, RoTD 39)
    -4 STR, +2 DEX, -2 WIS (Venerable adds +3 WIS/INT/CHA) -4 STR, +2 DEX, +1 WIS, +3 INT, +3 CHA
    Small, (+1 attack/AC, -4 grapple, +4 hide) Humanoid (Dragonblood, reptillian)
    No light sensitivity, +2 survival, Heat Endurance (+4 Fort vs hot weather)
    Speed 30, +1 NA, Darkvision 60

    Loredrake: (DoE 31)
    Cast as a Sorcerer 2 levels higher, add Spellcraft to skills list, reduce any RHD to d10’s

    Dragonwrought Kobold (DWK) (RoTD 100)
    Type changes to Dragon (humanoid, reptilian), retain kobold racial traits, immune to magic sleep/paralysis. Darkvision 60, Lowlight. +2 skill bonus related to dragon ancestry (p103).

    Battle Sorcerer:
    d8 HD, 1 less spell known (minimum 1)/spell slot (minimum 0) per level, use Cleric BAB progression, remove Bluff from class list, gain proficiency with any light or 1h martial weapon of choice (rapier), and light armor. Can cast in light armor w/o ASF.

    Draconic Right of Passage (RoTD 43)
    can cast any 1st lvl sorcerer spell as a SLA 1/day, CL=char lvl
    Ghostly Tail – RoTD: tail of force can make AoO, deal 2d6 +1/lvl damage


    Divine Companion ACF: CChamp 52
    Replaces familiar:
    cast targeted spells at companion who then stores the spell levels for later use. Can store a number of spell levels equal to your caster level. Companion can’t be affected by spells, SLA’s, anti-magic effects, dispel checks. Uses your CL for any checks required.
    (Su) Healing: standard action, heal you for 1d6/spell level released
    (Su) Shielding: swift action, Deflection bonus to AC, and Resistance bonus to saves equal to spell levels released. Lasts 1 rd/CL

    Magical Affinity (Dead Levels)
    Starting at Sorc 2, gain +2 on Know Arcana checks to identify dragons, total of +4 on check at 4th

    Swiftblade
    Full BAB/ 6/10 CL
    -Spring attack at 1st, Bounding Assault at 7th as bonus feats
    -Swift surge grants a bonus to attack rolls, dodge and REF saves. An extra 1d6 damage if you move 10ft, and later at 10th 2d6 if you move 20ft, and stacks with Haste
    -Blurred Alacrity starts at 20%, and ends at 50% miss chance for melee and ranged attacks
    -Sudden Casting allows for casting Haste as a free action 1/rd
    -Arcane Reflexes adds a total of +6 to Initiative w/o stat boosting equipment
    -Evasive Celerity starts at 20%, and ends at 50% miss chance for targeted spell defense
    -Fortified Hustle means your Haste can no longer be dispelled by any means, and Haste becomes an (Ex) ability.
    -Diligent Rapidity grants Freedom of Movement while under the effect of Haste, and lets you walk on water as a double move action
    -Perpetual Options allows you to trade the extra attack you’d make, from haste, for various actions
    -Innervated Speed allows you to cast Haste in a 6th slot or higher and replicate Time Stop for 1-4 rounds

    Abjurant Champion: CMAGE 50
    Full BAB/CL progression
    Abjurant Armor: any abj. spell that grants armor/shield bonus to ac, (bonus) is increased by AbCh level
    Extended Abjuration: double duration of all abj spells you cast
    Swift Abjuration: cast all abj spells as a swift action, max spell lvl 1/2 class lvl (rounded up)
    Arcane Boost: burn a spell slot to gain 1 of the following: bonus on attack rolls = spell lvl, weapon damage = 2x spell lvl, AC = spell lvl, saves = spell lvl, Resistance = 5xspell lvl
    Martial Arcanist: CL = BAB


    Paragnostic Apostle: CChamp 94
    Knowledge is Power – Penetrating Insight: +1 to CL checks to overcome SR/dispel checks
    Lore: (like Bardic Lore) 1d20+1+INT



    4d8+10d6+5d10+1d4+20

    Point Buy:
    STR 10, DEX 16, CON 12, INT 11, WIS 11, CHA 16
    Racial:
    STR 6, DEX 18, CON 12, INT 14, WIS 12, CHA 19
    4=WIS, rest into CHA

    Spoiler: Build
    Show


    Level Class Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Skills Feats Class Features
    1st Loredrake Battle Sorcerer +0 +0 +0 +2 Conc 4, Know Arc 4, Spellcraft 4, cc-Tumble 2 Dragonwrought, (B)Expeditious Dodge Divine Companion ACF, Spells, Draconic Rite of Passage – Ghostly Tail
    2nd Battle Sorcerer 2 +1 +0 +0 +3 Conc 5, Know Arc 5, Spellcraft 5, cc-Tumble 2.5 Magical Affinity - Dragons
    3rd Battle Sorcerer 3 +2 +1 +1 +3 Conc 6, Know Arc 6, Spellcraft 6, cc-Tumble 3 Mobility
    4th Battle Sorcerer 4 +3 +1 +1 +4 Conc 7, Spellcraft 7, cc-Know Rel 1
    5th Swiftblade +4 +1 +3 +6 Balance 1, Conc 8, Jump 1, Tumble 4, cc-Know Rel 2 (B)Spring Attack Swift Surge +1/0ft
    6th Swiftblade 2 +5 +1 +4 +7 Balance 2, Conc 9, Tumble 5, cc-Know Rel 2.5, cc-Sleight 1 Assume Supernatural Ability Blurred Alacrity (20%), +1 SC
    7th Swiftblade 3 +6 +2 +4 +7 Balance 3, Conc 10, Tumble 7, cc-Know Rel 3, cc-Sleight 2 Sudden Casting, Blurred Alacrity (30%), +1 SC
    8th Swiftblade 4 +7 +2 +5 +8 Balance 4, Conc 11, cc-Sleight 3, cc-Know Rel 4 Arcane Reflexes, Blurred Alacrity (40%), Swift Surge +1/10ft
    9th Swiftblade 5 +8 +2 +5 +8 Balance 5, Conc 12, cc-Sleight 4, cc-Know Rel 5 Elusive Target Evasive Celerity (20%), Blurred Alacrity (50%), +1 SC
    10th Swiftblade 6 +9 +3 +6 +9 Nimble Charge, Tumble 9, cc-Sleight 5 Evasive Celerity (30%), +1 SC
    11th Swiftblade 7 +10 +3 +6 +9 Conceal Spellcasting, cc-Know Local 2 (B)Bounding Assault Evasive Celerity (40%), Swift Surge +2/+10ft
    12th Swiftblade 8 +11 +3 +7 +10 Tumble 11, cc-Know Local 4 Combat Casting Evasive Celerity (50%), Diligent Rapidity, +1 SC
    13th Swiftblade 9 +12 +4 +7 +10 Conc 15, Tumble 12, cc-Know Local 5 Perpetual Options, +1 SC
    14th Swiftblade 10 +13 +4 +8 +11 Acrobatic Backstab, Conc 16, Spellcraft 8, cc-Sleight 6 Innervated Speed, Swift Surge +2/+20ft
    15th Abjurant Champion +14 +4 +8 +13 Swift Concentration, Conc 17, Spellcraft 9 Craft Contingent Spell Abjurant Armor, Extended Abjuration, +1 SC
    16th Abjurant Champion 2 +15 +4 +8 +14 Conc 18, Spellcraft 10, cc-Tumble 13 Swift Abjuration, +1 SC
    17th Abjurant Champion 3 +16 +5 +9 +14 Conc 19, Spellcraft 13 +1 SC
    18th Abjurant Champion 4 +17 +5 +9 +15 Conc 20, Spellcraft 14, cc-Tumble 14 Arcane Strike Arcane Boost, +1 SC
    19th Abjurant Champion 5 +18 +5 +9 +15 Conc 21, Spellcraft 15, cc-Tumble 15 Martial Arcanist, +1 SC
    20th Paragnostic Apostle +18 +5 +9 +17 Conc 22, Spellcraft 16, Know Arc 9 Holy Texts, Knowledge is Power – Penetrating Insight, Lore, +1 SC

    Spoiler: Spells
    Show


    Spells per Day/Spells Known
    Level 0lvl 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
    1st 0-5/4 1-4/2 - - - - - - - -
    2nd 0-5/5 1-5/2 2-2/1 - - - - - - -
    3rd 0-5/5 1-5/3 2-3/1 - - - - - - -
    4th 0-5/6 1-5/3 2-4/1 3-2/1 - - - - - -
    6th 0-5/6 1-5/4 2-5/2 3-3/1 - - - - - -
    7th 0-5/7 1-5/4 2-5/2 3-4/1 4-2/1 - - - - -
    9th 0-5/7 1-7/4 2-6/3 3-6/2 4-4/1 - - - - -
    10th 0-5/8 1-7/4 2-6/3 3-6/2 4-5/1 5-3/1 - - - -
    12th 0-5/8 1-7/4 2-6/4 3-6/3 4-6/2 5-4/1 - - - -
    13th 0-5/8 1-7/4 2-6/4 3-6/3 4-6/2 5-5/1 6-2/1 - - -
    15th 0-5/8 1-7/4 2-6/4 3-6/3 4-6/3 5-6/2 6-3/1 - - -
    16th 0-5/8 1-7/4 2-7/4 3-6/3 4-6/3 5-6/2 6-5/1 7-2/1 - -
    17th 0-5/8 1-7/4 2-7/4 3-6/3 4-6/3 5-6/3 6-6/2 7-3/1 - -
    18th 0-5/8 1-7/4 2-7/4 3-6/3 4-6/3 5-6/3 6-6/2 7-4/1 8-2/1 -
    19th 0-5/8 1-7/4 2-7/4 3-6/3 4-6/3 5-6/3 6-6/2 7-5/2 8-3/1 -
    20th 0-5/8 1-7/4 2-7/4 3-6/3 4-6/3 5-6/3 6-6/2 7-5/2 8-4/1 9-2/1
    Spoiler: spells known, etc
    Show

    Spells Known:
    0- Caltrops, Detect Magic, Ghost Sound, Open/Close, Read Magic, Resistance, Sonic Snap, Touch of Fatigue
    1- Color Spray, Nerveskitter, Protection from Evil, Shield
    2- Alter Self, Shatter, Touch of Idiocy, Wings of Cover
    3- Haste, Blink, Dragonskin
    4- Dimensional Anchor, Greater Invisibility, Polymorph
    5- Baleful Polymorph, Feeblemind, Spell Theft
    6- Imbue Familiar with Spell Ability, Disintegrate
    7- Limited Wish, Antimagic Ray
    8- Greater Shadow Evocation
    9- Shapechange

    Alter Self: since we’re a dragon, we can turn into other dragons:
    Wrymling: Black, Green, White, Brass, Copper, Fang, Battle, Ethereal, Styx, Shadow, Mercury, Steel, Mist, Song, Crystal, Sapphire, Orange, Yellow, Incarnum, Rattelyr, Sand, Spire. As well as Crested Felldrake, Spitting Felldrake, Horned Felldrake, Portal Drake, Pseudodragon.
    Humanoid side gives:
    Gnomes, Goblins, Halflings, Hobgoblins, Kobolds, Lizardfolk, Locathah, Merfolk, Orc, Troglodyte, Bugbears, Dwarves, Duergar, Elves, Githyanki/ziri

    Fun w/ Alter Self/Polymorph, and Assume Su:
    Hydras of various Heads, Wyvern, Remorhaz, Roper, Thoon Elder Brain, various dragon forms, Mind Flayer, Annis Hag, War Troll, Legendary Ape, Sun Giant, Rust Monster, Folugub, Basilisk, Gauth, Beholder, Choker, Cloaker, Displacer Beast, Gorgon, Sea Hag, Cryo/Pyro Hydra, Lamia ETC
    Hydras can attack w/ all their heads at no penalty, even after a move/charge, which synergizes nicely w/ spring attack/bounding assault.

    Displacer Beast gets 50% miss chance, combine that w/ Swiftblade for 100% miss chance total…
    Blurred Alacrity and Evasive Celerity both state that their bonus doesn’t stack w/ spell effects but the displacer beasts miss is a (Su) ability, not a spell effect… further, shapechange would allow the pack lord instead of the base beast.

    Greater Shadow Evocation: Contingency Spell, Delayed Blast Fireball, Forcecage, Mage’s Sword, Prismatic Spray, Reality Maelstrom (MoTP, 3.0 but updated to a 9th in SpC, so may be inelligible), Slashing Dispel

    Some fun things from Limited Wish:
    Absorb Mind, Alert Bebilith, Animate Dread Warrior, AMF, Antipathy, Archon’s Focus, Armor of Darkness (+13 to AC at 19th level), Awaken, Banishment, Battletide, Bewildering Mischance, Blinding Beauty, Break Enchantment, Call Lightning Storm, Celestial Aspect (pair w/ multiheaded hyrda and Horns of Cervidal), Commune, Control Winds, Greater Bestow Curse (demonologist 3rd, lol, 8th lvl sorc spell), Greater Blindsight, Greater Blink, Permanency, Devil’s Ego (to become an outsider for alter self/polymorph fun), Dispel Evil/Good/Law, Greater Dispel Magic, Disrupting Weapon, Divine Retribution, Dominate Person/Living Construct, Draconic Polymorph, Entomb, Eyebite (which by strict RAW “the effects are cumulative” means that something failing the save each round takes cumulative penalties…), Fabricate, Favor of the Martyr, Flesh to Salt/Stone, Forbidden Speech, Gemjump, Ghost Storm, Ghould Gauntlet, Guards and Wards, Heal, Heartfreeze, Greater Luminous Armor, Mineralize Warrior, Minor Servitor, Mummify, Plane Shift, Reciprocal Gyre, Refusal, Revivify, Righteous Might, Skyhurling, Slay Living, Spectral Touch (if you allow it to work w/ Ghostly Tail), Spell Resistance, Symbol of Pain/Spell Loss, Wall of Greater Dispel Magic ( which is a 5th Bard spell in the Underdark, but 8th and therefor ineligible in SpC)

    And of course, anything else in line w/ any of these varying power levels as you deem fit to “wish” for. How about, “the next attack by X is automatically a confirmed critical”?
    How about, “


    Spoiler: feats/tricks
    Show

    Feats
    1-Expeditious Dodge (Req dex 13) +2 dodge bonus to AC vs 1 opponent when moving 40ft in a round
    1- Dragonwrought
    3- Mobility (Req dodge) +4 dodge bonus vs AoO
    5- Spring Attack – can move before and after an attack, doesn’t provoke AoO from your target
    6- Assume Supernatural Ability
    9- Elusive Target
    11- Bounding Assault
    12- Combat Casting
    15- Craft Contingent Spell
    18- Arcane Strike

    Flaw
    this build requires a flaw to function, it could literally be anything available and really not matter once you start the shape changing shenanigans.

    Skill Tricks:
    Conceal Spellcasting: make a sleight of hand check vs spot check. If successful, observer can’t make AoO, or attempt to counterspell.
    Swift Concentration: maintain concentration as a swift action
    Nimble Charge: run or charge across difficult terrain w/o needing a balance check
    Acrobatic Backstab: succeed on a tumble check to move through an opponent’s space. Treat them as flat footed against the next melee attack you make during this turn.

    Skill Synergies:
    Know Arcana 5 = +2 to spellcraft
    Know Local 5 = +2 Gather Info
    Tumble 5 = +2 Balance and Jump

    Spoiler: level by level
    Show


    5-Behold the power of Loredrake. At 1st level, you’re casting as a 3rd level sorcerer. At 2nd Level you have access to Alter Self forms of 4 HD. Divine Companion turns spell ranks into healing or saves/AC which can’t be dispelled or affected by AMF or similar effects, this will be more important later. And at 5th, albeit with the use of a flaw, you’ve qualified for the SI a full two levels before anyone else could, this becomes important later on. As such, you gain +1 to attacks and do +1d6 damage whenever you move 10ft in a round while hasted. All the feats in this block w/ the exception of DWK are taxes for later on.

    10- 6 ranks into Swiftblade, and picked up both Assume Supernatural Ability, and Elusive Target. The first opens a bajillion options for both in combat as well as out of combat options. The second gives you 3 tactical maneuvers. Elusive Target’s maneuver’s don’t specify that they can only be used 1/encounter, so they should be usable every round. Already topped out at 50% miss chance for ranged/melee combat, and at 30% for spell combat. Nimble charge negates difficult terrain, and Arcane Reflexes adds +5 to initiative (+6 at 16th), (if casting nerveskitter, the init bonus is now +14). 7th level brings Polymorph, which among other things replaces your own physical scores w/ that of whatever you turn into, thus negating your weak STR score for melee combat. 10th level brings Baleful Polymorph to the field.

    15- Completed all 10 ranks in Swiftblade, and get access to the Time Stop ability at level 14, 3 levels before a pure wizard, and 4 levels before a pure sorcerer. Picked up Craft Contingent Spell for all the shenanigannery that can cause. 3 skill tricks in this block, Conceal Spellcasting can make all spells un-counterable, and prevent AoO’s for using them in combat. Acrobatic Backstab makes enemies flat footed (no dex to ac), and Swift Concentration makes that a swift action. Diligent Rapidity is free freedom of movement while hasted, and if it comes up, walking on water. Perpetual options is maximized action economy. Moved into Abjurant Champion, the 1st level of which grants class level in bonus to any ac/shield spell affecting you. As early as level 12, you have 6th level spell slots. If you chose to take Imbue w/ Spell Ability before Disintegrate, you could imbue spellcasting to your divine companion, who because it isn’t affected by anti-magic effects, could then cast spells (max 5th level) within an AMF or similar environment even if you couldn’t yourself. Rocks fall, DM dies.

    20- Finished off Abjurant Champion, all our abjurations can be cast as swift actions (up to 3rd level), and last 2x as long. You can now burn spell slots for more options than those granted by your divine companion. Martial Arcanist makes your CL equal to your BAB, which is 18. And, because you get to apply effects in the order most advantageous to you, Loredrake adds 2 to that, and you’re at a CL of 20, thus replicating the Practiced Spellcaster feat w/o actually taking it. The last rank is taken in Paragnostic Apostle, which grants you a further +1 to your CL, so 21, to overcome SR or for dispel checks. The last feat taken is Arcane Strike, which allows yet another way to burn spell slots, this time for direct to hit and plus damage per spell rank. End up as an 18th level sorcerer for casting progression, at a CL of 20 (21) with a BAB of +18 with full alter self/polymorph/shapechange/Haste abuse in place.

    Sweet spots:
    2- at level 2, you’re casting as a 4th level sorcerer, with access to Alter Self forms of 4HD.
    6- Assume Supernatural opens a massive can of options/abilities
    14- essentially at will time stop online, although only a few uses a day right now, still massively OP, combined w/ Imbue familiar to negate AMF's or other like abilities.
    15- Craft Contingent.
    19- Martial Arcanist essentially deletes lost caster levels, even if a tad late.

    Spoiler: options, options, options
    Show

    This build focuses on having as many possible options for any given situation. Alter Self, Polymoprh, Shapechange, Divine Companion, Assume Supernatural Ability, Imbue Familiar, Arcane Boost, Perpetual Options, Limited Wish, Greater Shadow Evocation, Craft Contingent and all the things you can do with Haste. You have an overwhelming array of options for any situation.

    Craft Contingent + Limited Wish/Gemjump = automatic greater teleport to a specific location w/o any miss chance.

    Limited Wish to attach metamagic to a spell and have its altered level be in line w/ the restrictions on LW.

    Limited Wish to cast Planar Binding to call an Efreeti for 3 full wishes…and use those for 3 staffs of 50 wishes… this is really the fallacy of Limited Wish, and doesn’t really relate to the SI except that you can use it to duplicate some really zany magic items or outright create them this way.




    Spoiler: Sources
    Show


    Complete Arcane: Craft Contingent Spell 77/139
    Complete Champion: Divine Companion 52, Paragnostic Apostle 94
    Complete Mage: Abjurant Champion 50
    Complete Warrior: Arcane Strike 96, Ellusive Target 110
    Dragons Of Eberron: Loredrake 31
    Races of the Dragon: Dragonwrought 100, Draconic Right of Passage 43, Ghostly Tail 113, Kobold 39
    Races of the Wild: Expeditious Dodge 150
    Savage Species: Assume Supernatural Ability 30
    SRD/PHB: Feats (Mobility, Combat Casting)

    http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/ra...alVariants.htm Desert Kobold
    http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/cl...terClasses.htm Battle Sorcerer
    http://archive.wizards.com/default.a.../cwc/20061013a Dead Levels (Magical Affinity)
    http://archive.wizards.com/default.a...d/prc/20070327 Swiftblade

    as always for CHA based characters, the slippers of battledancing (DMG2) are advantageous as an equipment option, more so for a swiftblade.

    The build is pretty feat starved, having already used a flaw. But recreating a feat as a weapon enhancement to gain weapon finesse would benefit this build in allowing your rapier to use that.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kalirren View Post
    The only person in the past two pages who has known what (s)he has been talking about is Heliomance.
    Quote Originally Posted by golentan View Post
    I just don't want to have long romantic conversations or any sort of drama with my computer, okay? It knows what kind of porn I watch. I don't want to mess that up by allowing it to judge any of my choices in romance.

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