A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
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  1. - Top - End - #121
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Random nit pick: I think 30 int is pretty reasonable at epic level and 36+ is generous. All the different random buffs add up. Even if youíre smart about magic items and donít just dump a huge amount in one stat, a +4 or +6 item is reasonable at epic level and you get 5+ from level ups alone. So 24 is a bare minimum for a vanilla NPC using only the NPC array and 26 is still low-ish if anything.

    Ya many slots are burned in the morning on buffs, wards and so on. Heck the dungeon may have had a few daily wards that couldnít be made permanent. Also probably where a lot of Dorukonís WBL went.
    Last edited by ericgrau; 2021-07-01 at 09:07 AM.

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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    This fact that "V was cheated and the prophecy was not fulfilled" is news to me, I really liked how it went down, and it 100% made sense to me.


    No mortal who ever lived has ever held as much arcane power as V then, if power is measured as "amount and variety of high level spells".
    And incidentally, that's exactly how V measured power at the time.
    So the IFCC 100% delivered on the promise, V knew what she was getting and showed no misunderstanding or complaint.

    How she lost, yeah, it's because she was dumb.
    Her surprise round, for example.
    Time stop, countered by the trap, and quickened chain lightning, that didn't hurt Xykon.

    In both occasions, V did not fail because she didn't have enough "power" (i.e., enough high level slots).
    She failed because she didn't have enough power.


    Also, on the Dorukan fight. I agree that it was disappointing how weak and unprepared Dorukan looked. In an ideal world Xykon would have still won in the same way, but it would have been shown in a more clever way.

    Maybe Dorukan tries different things, only one of them works and damages Xykon, but he can't do it again because he prepared 1x of 10 different attack plans.
    Xykon also tries different spells, and as soon as he finds one that works he keep going with that until he wins.

    Maybe Xykon does energy drain (or another spell), and Dorukan has a counter measure it for the first one, but nothing for the next ones.

    Overall, yes it could have been shown better, but the Giant's point stands:
    The "how it happens" is not that important, since we already know who wins.
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  3. - Top - End - #123
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    So for fun I tried to make a good list of defensive items and see how affordable it is.

    Wings of Flying(54k) Third Eye Conceal(120k) Soulfire Bracers (25k) Ring of Freedom of Movement(40k) Dragon's Eye Amulet(55k) Periapt of Health(7.4k) Periapt of Proof against Poison(27k).

    For about 330k gold that gives you all day flight, freedom of movement, blindsense, and immunity to death effects, negative energy, divination, mind-affecting, disease, and poison. Well within the budget of a 20th level character and still leaves you room for other things, like more defensive items. The real problem is your limited number of item slots. So you have to pay extra and hope your DM's fantasy Costco lets you commission combined items.
    If you're willing to settle for once per day items or cast some of these yourself, you save a lot of money and open up room for more defenses.

    Note this is for fun, and not a list I would expect Dorukan or any OotS character to have.

  4. - Top - End - #124
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by Gurgeh View Post
    We don't know for a fact that Dorukan was a specialist but realistically he's probably is; generalist wizards are ultra rare and Dorukan does have a bunch of abjuration associations (Cloister, the ward on his gate, etc.) - so there are reasonable odds for him to have one more spell per level for everything there.

    Broadly speaking, though, I think your assessment is good!
    I wouldn't know about generalists being "ultra rare".

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    That being said, Tsukiko is supposed to be a necromancer, but it looks like I gave her too many schools. Oh well. I guess she breaks the rules.
    I wouldn't be surprised if Dorukan's specialization or lack thereof has simply never been a consideration.
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Xykon had him under siege for what 6 months? In my book the fool is the one who assumes the Epic wizard hasn't prepped against you in all this time, including by using scrying and other magic to determine how to beat you. Xykon isn't a fool in this story because rule of cool, not because of some other reason.

  6. - Top - End - #126
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by TooSoon View Post
    Xykon had him under siege for what 6 months? In my book the fool is the one who assumes the Epic wizard hasn't prepped against you in all this time, including by using scrying and other magic to determine how to beat you. Xykon isn't a fool in this story because rule of cool, not because of some other reason.
    I think you're underestimating the sheer arrogance of Dorukan. You call it a siege, he calls it an impenetrable dungeon. Look at it from his point of view: Dorukan dismissed Xykon as a non-threat because Xykon made zero progress in penetrating the dungeon in six months. Why would he have spent resources fighting Xykon when he could just sit in his dungeon and ignore the lich completely?

  7. - Top - End - #127
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by hungrycrow View Post
    So for fun I tried to make a good list of defensive items and see how affordable it is.

    Wings of Flying(54k) Third Eye Conceal(120k) Soulfire Bracers (25k) Ring of Freedom of Movement(40k) Dragon's Eye Amulet(55k) Periapt of Health(7.4k) Periapt of Proof against Poison(27k).

    For about 330k gold that gives you all day flight, freedom of movement, blindsense, and immunity to death effects, negative energy, divination, mind-affecting, disease, and poison. Well within the budget of a 20th level character and still leaves you room for other things, like more defensive items. The real problem is your limited number of item slots. So you have to pay extra and hope your DM's fantasy Costco lets you commission combined items.
    If you're willing to settle for once per day items or cast some of these yourself, you save a lot of money and open up room for more defenses.
    Are these items still affordable for someone who used his wealth to build a dungeon to house all the creatures that weren't updated to 3.5 and fill it with the strongest magical wards he could buy, and who ran out of money doing this, to the point that the water ward got cut from his dungeon?

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    annoyed Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by Jason View Post
    Are these items still affordable for someone who used his wealth to build a dungeon to house all the creatures that weren't updated to 3.5 and fill it with the strongest magical wards he could buy, and who ran out of money doing this, to the point that the water ward got cut from his dungeon?
    Probably not, but dungeons in general are way beyond one PC's personal wealth. Not sure how Dorukan paid for it all, or if it involved selling off all of his old adventuring gear. Serini apparently managed to make an elaborate magical dungeon while still keeping a good amount of gear.

  9. - Top - End - #129
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by hungrycrow View Post
    So for fun I tried to make a good list of defensive items and see how affordable it is.

    Wings of Flying(54k) Third Eye Conceal(120k) Soulfire Bracers (25k) Ring of Freedom of Movement(40k) Dragon's Eye Amulet(55k) Periapt of Health(7.4k) Periapt of Proof against Poison(27k).

    For about 330k gold that gives you all day flight, freedom of movement, blindsense, and immunity to death effects, negative energy, divination, mind-affecting, disease, and poison. Well within the budget of a 20th level character and still leaves you room for other things, like more defensive items. The real problem is your limited number of item slots. So you have to pay extra and hope your DM's fantasy Costco lets you commission combined items.
    If you're willing to settle for once per day items or cast some of these yourself, you save a lot of money and open up room for more defenses.

    Note this is for fun, and not a list I would expect Dorukan or any OotS character to have.
    Throw in that your bracers of armor need to have heavy fortification for a +5 to cost, for immunity to crits and precision damage. (36K if you are counting on epic mage armor for the actual armor class.)

    You also need continuous true seeing.

  10. - Top - End - #130
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    I'm really enjoying our discussion of shopping lists for hypothetical 20th-level Wizards. So I've decided to expand on mine from earlier.

    Spoiler: The Hard Choices
    Show
    Arms
    Bracers of Armor (+1, Soulfire, Proof Against Transmutation) 100000 1 100000
    Wand Bracelet 12000 1.5 18000
    118000

    Body
    Thistledown Padded Armor 405 1 405
    +1, Heavy Fortification, Gleaming 81000 1 81000
    Called 2000 1 2000
    Glamered 2700 1 2700
    86105

    Face
    Artificer's Monocle 1500 1.5 2250
    Mask of True Seeing 75000 1 75000
    Third Eye Clarity 3000 1.5 4500
    +6 Intelligence 36000 1 36000
    117750

    Feet
    Anklet of Translocation 1400 1.5 2100
    Cloudwalker Anklets 50000 1 50000
    52100

    Hands

    Head

    Ring 1
    Ring of Feather Falling 2200 1.5 3300
    Ring of Freedom of Movement 40000 1.5 60000
    Ring of Sustenance 2500 1.5 3750
    Ring of Mental Fortitude 110000 1 110000
    177050

    Ring 2

    Shoulders

    Throat
    Enduring Amulet 1500 1.5 2250
    Hand of the Mage 900 1.5 1350
    Necklace of Adaptation 9000 1.5 13500
    Periapt of Health 7400 1.5 11100
    Periapt of Proof Against Poison 27000 1 27000
    +6 Constitution 36000 1 36000
    91200

    Torso
    Shiftweave 500 1.5 750
    Tunic of Steady Spellcasting 2500 1 2500
    +5 Saves 25000 1 25000
    28250

    Waist
    Belt of Battle 12000 1 12000
    Belt of Hidden Pouches 5000 1.5 7500
    Healing Belt 750 1.5 1125
    20625

    Tools
    Blessed Book 12500 1 12500
    Fortifying Bedroll 3000 1 3000
    Infinite Scrollcase 1800 1 1800
    Instant Tent 9000 1 9000
    Scrying Shard 1350 1 1350
    27650

    Total: 718730

    So that gets you Death Ward, immunity to transmutations, Heavy Fortification, 20% miss chance, True Seeing, "flight," Freedom of Movement, no need for food and water, immunity to mind-affecting, no need for air, immunity to disease, and immunity to poison.

    Unfulfilled Desires
    • Airship
    • Casting Glove
    • Ghost Ward Armor
    • Manuals
    • Metamagic Rods
    • Ring of Universal Energy Resistance, Greater
    • Tomes
    • Twilight Mithril Chain Shirt
    • +5 Deflection
    • +5 Natural Armor
    • +6 Dexterity
    • +6 Wisdom

    Of course, if you're willing to take an item creation feat or two, you can get most of those for half price. So you'd be able to get a lot of that extra stuff I listed at the end too without going over budget.

  11. - Top - End - #131
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by Maat Mons View Post
    I'm really enjoying our discussion of shopping lists for hypothetical 20th-level Wizards. So I've decided to expand on mine from earlier.

    Spoiler: The Hard Choices
    Show
    Arms
    Bracers of Armor (+1, Soulfire, Proof Against Transmutation) 100000 1 100000
    Wand Bracelet 12000 1.5 18000
    118000

    Body
    Thistledown Padded Armor 405 1 405
    +1, Heavy Fortification, Gleaming 81000 1 81000
    Called 2000 1 2000
    Glamered 2700 1 2700
    86105

    Face
    Artificer's Monocle 1500 1.5 2250
    Mask of True Seeing 75000 1 75000
    Third Eye Clarity 3000 1.5 4500
    +6 Intelligence 36000 1 36000
    117750

    Feet
    Anklet of Translocation 1400 1.5 2100
    Cloudwalker Anklets 50000 1 50000
    52100

    Hands

    Head

    Ring 1
    Ring of Feather Falling 2200 1.5 3300
    Ring of Freedom of Movement 40000 1.5 60000
    Ring of Sustenance 2500 1.5 3750
    Ring of Mental Fortitude 110000 1 110000
    177050

    Ring 2

    Shoulders

    Throat
    Enduring Amulet 1500 1.5 2250
    Hand of the Mage 900 1.5 1350
    Necklace of Adaptation 9000 1.5 13500
    Periapt of Health 7400 1.5 11100
    Periapt of Proof Against Poison 27000 1 27000
    +6 Constitution 36000 1 36000
    91200

    Torso
    Shiftweave 500 1.5 750
    Tunic of Steady Spellcasting 2500 1 2500
    +5 Saves 25000 1 25000
    28250

    Waist
    Belt of Battle 12000 1 12000
    Belt of Hidden Pouches 5000 1.5 7500
    Healing Belt 750 1.5 1125
    20625

    Tools
    Blessed Book 12500 1 12500
    Fortifying Bedroll 3000 1 3000
    Infinite Scrollcase 1800 1 1800
    Instant Tent 9000 1 9000
    Scrying Shard 1350 1 1350
    27650

    Total: 718730

    So that gets you Death Ward, immunity to transmutations, Heavy Fortification, 20% miss chance, True Seeing, "flight," Freedom of Movement, no need for food and water, immunity to mind-affecting, no need for air, immunity to disease, and immunity to poison.

    Unfulfilled Desires
    • Airship
    • Casting Glove
    • Ghost Ward Armor
    • Manuals
    • Metamagic Rods
    • Ring of Universal Energy Resistance, Greater
    • Tomes
    • Twilight Mithril Chain Shirt
    • +5 Deflection
    • +5 Natural Armor
    • +6 Dexterity
    • +6 Wisdom

    Of course, if you're willing to take an item creation feat or two, you can get most of those for half price. So you'd be able to get a lot of that extra stuff I listed at the end too without going over budget.
    It's a good list, I wouldn't have thought of defense against transmutation. If we're talking 20th lvl wizards, would it be better to cover a few things like mind-affecting immunity or flight with your own spells and save a few thousand?

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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Yeah, you'd probably be better off taking the money I spent on things that overlap with your spells, and spending it on something else.

    Some of the decisions I made there reflect a weird sort of paranoia. For example, instead of getting a Cowl of Warding, which provides actual Mind Blank, I got a Ring of Mental Fortitude, which protects against mind-affecting effects, but not divinations. I did this because I'm worried that, when I take off my hood in the king's court, as manners dictate, someone will choose that exact moment to hit me with a mind-control spell. So I'd wind up still needing to cast Mind Blank on myself anyway, to keep people from spying on me.

    But, given that I'm planning to cast Mind Blank every day anyway, why did I bother buying an item that overlaps the benefits of it? Because a Dispel targeted on me, or even an area Dispel, can remove Mind Blank. But to deprive me of the effects of a magic item, the Dispel would need to be targeted at that specific item. And if I'm feeling especially paranoid, I can wear a glove over the hand the ring is on, to block line of effect for Dispel.

    I can't think of any particular problem with using Overland Flight in place of an expensive item though. I mean, it only gives you average maneuverability, which means you can't hover. But there are ways around that which cost much less than the 50k I spent on Air Walk. And unlike Air Walk and the various wing-based magic items, Overland Flight makes you immune to trip.

    So there's definitely room for improvement. I left a lot of AC on the table, for one thing. A lot. 16 points of normal AC and 10 points of touch AC, just from the things I though of. And there are probably more I didn't think of. It's one of my biggest regrets with that list, along with not having my own personal airship, not having a giant pile of Metamagic Rods, and not continuously having resistance 30 to all energy types. *Sigh*

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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by Maat Mons View Post
    Yeah, you'd probably be better off taking the money I spent on things that overlap with your spells, and spending it on something else.

    Some of the decisions I made there reflect a weird sort of paranoia. For example, instead of getting a Cowl of Warding, which provides actual Mind Blank, I got a Ring of Mental Fortitude, which protects against mind-affecting effects, but not divinations. I did this because I'm worried that, when I take off my hood in the king's court, as manners dictate, someone will choose that exact moment to hit me with a mind-control spell. So I'd wind up still needing to cast Mind Blank on myself anyway, to keep people from spying on me.

    But, given that I'm planning to cast Mind Blank every day anyway, why did I bother buying an item that overlaps the benefits of it? Because a Dispel targeted on me, or even an area Dispel, can remove Mind Blank. But to deprive me of the effects of a magic item, the Dispel would need to be targeted at that specific item. And if I'm feeling especially paranoid, I can wear a glove over the hand the ring is on, to block line of effect for Dispel.

    I can't think of any particular problem with using Overland Flight in place of an expensive item though. I mean, it only gives you average maneuverability, which means you can't hover. But there are ways around that which cost much less than the 50k I spent on Air Walk. And unlike Air Walk and the various wing-based magic items, Overland Flight makes you immune to trip.

    So there's definitely room for improvement. I left a lot of AC on the table, for one thing. A lot. 16 points of normal AC and 10 points of touch AC, just from the things I though of. And there are probably more I didn't think of. It's one of my biggest regrets with that list, along with not having my own personal airship, not having a giant pile of Metamagic Rods, and not continuously having resistance 30 to all energy types. *Sigh*
    Maybe get a ring of spellbattle(super broken for its price) or a ring of counterspells and just block dispel attempts. That'd save you like 80k on the ring of mental fortitude.

    Having all the Heart of X element spells gives you heavy fortification plus a bunch of other benefits. Could be worth using those instead of the armor.

    Does your paranoid wizard need trueseeing all the time? Maybe get Eyes of Truth for when you need it on the spot, and cast it when you need longer uses.
    Last edited by hungrycrow; 2021-07-02 at 01:37 AM.

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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by Gurgeh View Post
    Emphasis mine - I don't think that's correct? The only listed components for Energy Drain are Verbal and Somatic.
    You're right, I meant Death Ward, which arcane casters can only duplicate using Wish, which has an xp component. I was writing too quick.

    Now knowing that Energy Drain can wipe out multiple spell slots per casting, it seems like the perfect spell for a sorcerer to spam against a wizard, and I believe the multiple energy drains in a row wasn't artistic licence; Dorukan was literally down to cantrips after his last spell we saw him cast.

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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by Riftwolf View Post
    You're right, I meant Death Ward, which arcane casters can only duplicate using Wish, which has an xp component. I was writing too quick.

    Now knowing that Energy Drain can wipe out multiple spell slots per casting, it seems like the perfect spell for a sorcerer to spam against a wizard, and I believe the multiple energy drains in a row wasn't artistic licence; Dorukan was literally down to cantrips after his last spell we saw him cast.
    Quite possible; Energy Drain bestows 2d4 negative levels per casting, which is an average of five negative levels. That's already enough to nuke every single one of Dorukan's epic slots, and that's assuming he hadn't used a slot or two already that day.



    Also regarding the Soul Splices, here's some of my observations and headcanons.

    • The splices do grant V their spell lists and spell slots as when they were alive, using their stats; otherwise, V wouldn't have been able to use Jephton's spells at all, and probably not any of the epic spells due to not meeting the requirements. This likely doesn't mean V was a Wizard 60+/Sorcerer 20+; V's an evoker, Haerta a necromancer, and Ganonron a conjurer. It was probably treated a bit like the gestalt alternative rules, except using someone else's spell slots instead and with a hefty amount of LA. It actually doesn't have to be that high; it only has to be 7 higher than the higher end of what CR creatures Darth V would likely be fighting. An ECL of 30~40 is high, but not as ridiculous as V being treated as taking all those levels.
    • This probably means V didn't get any stat bonuses or such from that. While their Intelligence only matters for their own spell slots, it also means they only had like 14 HD or so, and a piss-poor Constitution. At the very least, it doesn't appear that access to their epic spellcasting doesn't mean access to epic Concentration bonuses. It also means their BAB still sucks, which is probably why they missed Xykon with the Quickened Dimensional Anchor. It'd also mean they'd actually have way lower save bonuses, AC, and hit points than a caster who'd actually gotten up to a comparable level.
    • The splicing does let V instantly refresh all four sets of spell slots due to the rejuvenation, so V could tailor their own slots as well as Haerta's and Ganonron's to the ABD fight, but that doesn't mean such spells would help against Xykon since V wasn't planning on fighting him when they first took the deal.
    • The splices do fill in some of the weaknesses V's build has; the two schools they've barred and an extra pool of floating slots just in case something comes up that can't be handled with the other three lists. It doesn't do anything about the action economy, though; while V did partly make up for that with loads of Quickened spells it means V's burst damage probably wasn't much higher than any one of the Splices, if at all.
    • Due to the IFCC's agreement with the Evil gods, V can't replicate divine magic whatsoever. This means all that power doesn't help protect against spells like Energy Drain. The splices do provide some protection against negative levels... by diffusing them across the splices, which also weakens(at least temporarily) their casting by significant amounts. Though that's still a lot more protection than Dorukan had, I guess.


    Even if V did keep all three Splices and used them intelligently(and not doing so was kind of the problem in the first place)... I'm not quite sure if it'd have been quite enough against Xykon.

    Oh sure, Darth V at full power would have a positively ridiculous number and variety of spells at disposal. The problem is, well, Xykon can spam Energy Drains and Splicing inherently prevents you from protecting against that on your own. And there's only so many spells Darth V could use at once. Even ignoring that... well, V's still a mid-level caster with half the hit points of Xykon at best.

    Of course most characters are "played" hideously unoptimal, so if a smarter player had control of Darth V in a game maybe they'd beat Xykon; he's considerably more optimized than most casters in the comic but that bar was too low in the first place. If Darth V could beat Xykon, I'd say that's as indicative of OotS being unoptimized as heck as much as triple-Splicing being OP.
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by danielxcutter View Post
    Quite possible; Energy Drain bestows 2d4 negative levels per casting, which is an average of five negative levels. That's already enough to nuke every single one of Dorukan's epic slots, and that's assuming he hadn't used a slot or two already that day.



    Also regarding the Soul Splices, here's some of my observations and headcanons.

    • The splices do grant V their spell lists and spell slots as when they were alive, using their stats; otherwise, V wouldn't have been able to use Jephton's spells at all, and probably not any of the epic spells due to not meeting the requirements. This likely doesn't mean V was a Wizard 60+/Sorcerer 20+; V's an evoker, Haerta a necromancer, and Ganonron a conjurer. It was probably treated a bit like the gestalt alternative rules, except using someone else's spell slots instead and with a hefty amount of LA. It actually doesn't have to be that high; it only has to be 7 higher than the higher end of what CR creatures Darth V would likely be fighting. An ECL of 30~40 is high, but not as ridiculous as V being treated as taking all those levels.
    • This probably means V didn't get any stat bonuses or such from that. While their Intelligence only matters for their own spell slots, it also means they only had like 14 HD or so, and a piss-poor Constitution. At the very least, it doesn't appear that access to their epic spellcasting doesn't mean access to epic Concentration bonuses. It also means their BAB still sucks, which is probably why they missed Xykon with the Quickened Dimensional Anchor. It'd also mean they'd actually have way lower save bonuses, AC, and hit points than a caster who'd actually gotten up to a comparable level.
    • The splicing does let V instantly refresh all four sets of spell slots due to the rejuvenation, so V could tailor their own slots as well as Haerta's and Ganonron's to the ABD fight, but that doesn't mean such spells would help against Xykon since V wasn't planning on fighting him when they first took the deal.
    • The splices do fill in some of the weaknesses V's build has; the two schools they've barred and an extra pool of floating slots just in case something comes up that can't be handled with the other three lists. It doesn't do anything about the action economy, though; while V did partly make up for that with loads of Quickened spells it means V's burst damage probably wasn't much higher than any one of the Splices, if at all.
    • Due to the IFCC's agreement with the Evil gods, V can't replicate divine magic whatsoever. This means all that power doesn't help protect against spells like Energy Drain. The splices do provide some protection against negative levels... by diffusing them across the splices, which also weakens(at least temporarily) their casting by significant amounts. Though that's still a lot more protection than Dorukan had, I guess.


    Even if V did keep all three Splices and used them intelligently(and not doing so was kind of the problem in the first place)... I'm not quite sure if it'd have been quite enough against Xykon.

    Oh sure, Darth V at full power would have a positively ridiculous number and variety of spells at disposal. The problem is, well, Xykon can spam Energy Drains and Splicing inherently prevents you from protecting against that on your own. And there's only so many spells Darth V could use at once. Even ignoring that... well, V's still a mid-level caster with half the hit points of Xykon at best.

    Of course most characters are "played" hideously unoptimal, so if a smarter player had control of Darth V in a game maybe they'd beat Xykon; he's considerably more optimized than most casters in the comic but that bar was too low in the first place. If Darth V could beat Xykon, I'd say that's as indicative of OotS being unoptimized as heck as much as triple-Splicing being OP.
    The whole reason for taking away the Hearta splice was because it wasn't plausible Xykon could take V with her... at all. The author dropping several times mentions that she was much more powerful than the others, and had most of the necromancy, to help justify Xykon's win. Familicide was statted out to something like level 128 if I remember correctly, and it was impressive someone got it down to that. Xykon is incredibly vulnerable to necromancy from a caster well above his level (and it would further negate the deal/prophecy if he wasn't weaker). Hearta getting taken away was the author going "oh crap, I've made him too powerful for the plot to fly, time to start walking this thing back".

    PS; there are items you can get to protect from negative energy you know...

    PPS: we know the levels didn't stack, particularly because Superb Dispelling wouldn't have worked if they did.
    Last edited by TooSoon; 2021-07-02 at 06:03 AM.

  17. - Top - End - #137
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by TooSoon View Post
    Familicide was statted out to something like level 128 if I remember correctly, and it was impressive someone got it down to that.
    Familicide was never statted out in the comic at any point.

    Xykon is incredibly vulnerable to necromancy from a caster well above his level (and it would further negate the deal/prophecy if he wasn't weaker). Hearta getting taken away was the author going "oh crap, I've made him too powerful for the plot to fly, time to start walking this thing back".
    Once again, you're making claims about the writing process and the motives behind it that are pure conjecture at best. There's no reason to assume losing Haerta wasn't part of the plot from the moment it was laid out.
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by TooSoon View Post
    The whole reason for taking away the Hearta splice was because it wasn't plausible Xykon could take V with her... at all. The author dropping several times mentions that she was much more powerful than the others, and had most of the necromancy, to help justify Xykon's win. Familicide was statted out to something like level 128 if I remember correctly, and it was impressive someone got it down to that. Xykon is incredibly vulnerable to necromancy from a caster well above his level (and it would further negate the deal/prophecy if he wasn't weaker). Hearta getting taken away was the author going "oh crap, I've made him too powerful for the plot to fly, time to start walking this thing back".
    Uh... most necromancy doesn't actually work that well on undead, except for Undeath to Death and a few buffs and utility spells? Undead are immune to death effects, negative energy actually heals them, Horrid Wilting explicitly only works on living creatures... you get the idea.

    And Familicide is really hard to stat out because of all the ad-hoc requirements. I think Rich specifically stated that he treats epic spells as plot devices or something. And to be fair, some of the pre-made epic spells in the ELH and some of the Forgotten Realms sourcebooks have really weird ad-hoc reductions.

    Incidentally, arcane necromancy actually sucks at handling undead. Usually it mostly just excels at making living creatures normal-dead.

    PS; there are items you can get to protect from negative energy you know...
    And V has none of them, even if they [1] exist in OotS in the first place, b) V could afford them, and III. they were the type that V could actually use without getting some kind of significant penalty.

    PPS: we know the levels didn't stack, particularly because Superb Dispelling wouldn't have worked if they did.
    Well yeah, but I remember some people saying "Oh wow, V must have had a CL of 100 or higher because they broke the AMF" when V actually just got really lucky. Not you, but I do remember statements like that.
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Statted out by a poster obviously.

    PS- I was talking about how Dorukan could have gotten such an item. Seems clearly within his means, and he had 6 months to scry on and study Xykon.

    PPS- Well, I think V was over level 100 when he had Hearta, because it seems like she might have been that high or higher (plus there are ways you can increase the probability of disjunction). I'd say V didn't just bust it out thinking "I'm feeling lucky", probably knew it was a high chance (or a certainty) it would work.
    Last edited by TooSoon; 2021-07-02 at 06:21 AM.

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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by TooSoon View Post
    Statted out by a poster obviously.
    That one's a headcanon at best. And Rich doesn't exactly follow the epic spellcasting rules closely; Xykon should not be able to cast Superb Dispelling RAW.

    PS- I was talking about how Dorukan could have gotten such an item. Seems clearly within his means, and he had 6 months to scry on and study Xykon.
    Again, you assume those items even exist in OotS. I'm not sure if Rich even knows that Arms and Equipment Guide is a thing in the first place. I don't think you knew that before someone mentioned it earlier in the thread. And Dragon Magazine content is effectively homebrew at best.

    PPS- Well, I think V was over level 100 when he had Hearta, because it seems like she might have been that high or higher (plus there are ways you can increase the probability of disjunction). I'd say V didn't just bust it out thinking "I'm feeling lucky", probably knew it was a high chance (or a certainty) it would work.
    No, caster levels don't need to stack for a Disjunction to bust an AMF wide open(about 1/5 chance is still worth a shot I'd say), there aren't any ways of increasing Disjunction probability besides CL pumping, and V was higher than the ISS on arcane power.
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  21. - Top - End - #141
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by TooSoon View Post
    Statted out by a poster obviously.
    And thus irrelevant. Familicide was an arbitrarily powerful horrible spell with awful consequences both immediate and unforeseen. It doesn't matter what the numbers were.

    PPS- Well, I think V was over level 100 when he had Hearta, because it seems like she might have been that high or higher (plus there are ways you can increase the probability of disjunction). I'd say V didn't just bust it out thinking "I'm feeling lucky", probably knew it was a high chance (or a certainty) it would work.
    We know what V was thinking. They thought they could just bludgeon Xykon into submission with arcane power. They were wrong, obviously. It also doesn't matter if it could have or would have worked if this or that had been different. It didn't work and the entire point of the plotline was that it wasn't going to. Alternate timelines where it worked only matter to people weirdly invested in the temporary power V got by dealing with fiends.
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty View Post
    Once again, you're making claims about the writing process and the motives behind it that are pure conjecture at best. There's no reason to assume losing Haerta wasn't part of the plot from the moment it was laid out.
    One point in favour of this is that Hearta's early departure compared to Jephton and Ganonron means that Nero has a shorter claim on V's soul than Cedrik and Lee. Will that matter? I don't know, but it certainly might.
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    One point in favour of this is that Hearta's early departure compared to Jephton and Ganonron means that Nero has a shorter claim on V's soul than Cedrik and Lee. Will that matter? I don't know, but it certainly might.
    It also shows us in advance that V losing their hold on the souls if their concentration slips is a real risk.
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Arcane necromancers also get Control Undead, which is basically a save or die. The Giant could have just written Xykon as passing his save, but having the fight come down to a single dice roll might have taken away from the lesson of V's poor tactics.

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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by TooSoon View Post
    The whole reason for taking away the Hearta splice was because it wasn't plausible Xykon could take V with her... at all.
    Could you remind me where he said that? It seems to have slipped my mind. Because surely such a bold claim wouldn't be made solely based on how it might play out by D&D rules, which the author has explicitly said he does not care about at all.
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by hungrycrow View Post
    Arcane necromancers also get Control Undead, which is basically a save or die. The Giant could have just written Xykon as passing his save, but having the fight come down to a single dice roll might have taken away from the lesson of V's poor tactics.
    Control Undead has a really low save DC, and as a lich sorcerer Xykonís Will save isnít that bad.

    Actually, I wonder just how bad Vís tactics really were beyond the ďrushing in blindly and aloneĒ part(and yes I know thatís a really big factor). If an epic caster can be unaware that liches are immune to electricity I donít think thatís too big a mistake, using Crushing Grasp was actually a pretty good choice against a caster and technically wouldnít have been destroyed by Meteor Swarm, and Empowered Sunburst hits for a LOT of damage against undead.
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by danielxcutter View Post
    using Crushing Grasp was actually a pretty good choice against a caster and technically wouldnít have been destroyed by Meteor Swarm,
    You sure? It would presumably have the same HP as listed by interposing hand (which would be V's Max HP stat) and doesn't make any saves. So by 3.5e rules, Meteor Swarm would have done 32d6 damage to the hand, average 112. That should be more than enough, right?

    V himself probably takes half of 24d6, so average 42: it's four blasts of 6d6, but he probably makes all of the reflex saves for half (protection from spells is still up from the dragon fight so he has a large bonus) and doesn't have fire resistance.

    The 3.0e version of Meteor Swarm would obliterate it, though: 96d6 damage if I'm reading the spell correctly (since Xykon uses the 4 large sphere version rather than 8 small spheres). However, I think that effect would mean there's no AoE damage (although the wording is confusing), so this probably isn't the version used in comic.
    Last edited by Hurkyl; 2021-07-02 at 08:37 AM.

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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by Hurkyl View Post
    You sure? It would presumably have the same HP as listed by interposing hand (which would be V's Max HP stat) and doesn't make any saves. So by 3.5e rules, Meteor Swarm would have done 32d6 damage to the hand, average 112. That should be more than enough, right?

    V himself probably takes half of 24d6, so average 42: it's four blasts of 6d6, but he probably makes all of the reflex saves for half (protection from spells is still up from the dragon fight so he has a large bonus) and doesn't have fire resistance.

    The 3.0e version of Meteor Swarm would obliterate it, though; 96d6 damage if I'm reading the spell correctly (since Xykon uses the 4 large sphere version rather than 8 small spheres). However, I think that effect would mean there's no AoE damage (although the wording is confusing), so this probably isn't the version used in comic.
    I thought force effects canít be destroyed by physical damage. Only effects like Disintegrate, spells that specifically destroy force effects, and abilities that actively dispel or destroy spell effects. Is the Hand series an exception?
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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by danielxcutter View Post
    Control Undead has a really low save DC, and as a lich sorcerer Xykonís Will save isnít that bad.

    Actually, I wonder just how bad Vís tactics really were beyond the ďrushing in blindly and aloneĒ part(and yes I know thatís a really big factor). If an epic caster can be unaware that liches are immune to electricity I donít think thatís too big a mistake, using Crushing Grasp was actually a pretty good choice against a caster and technically wouldnít have been destroyed by Meteor Swarm, and Empowered Sunburst hits for a LOT of damage against undead.
    Control Undead has the same save DC as any 7th level spell. Unless you're thinking of Command Undead, which is 2nd?

    Aside from the whole "rushing in blindly and alone", I'd add that quickened dimensional anchor was probably a wasted spell. Not only was it assuming V would be able to win the fight, but Xykon couldn't run away anyways or risk losing his phylactery.

    Also, clearly their biggest mistake was not teleporting to the nearest magic mart and picking up a ring of protection from negative energy.

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    Default Re: Talk How colossally dumb Dorukan was [Untagged SoD spoilers]

    Quote Originally Posted by hungrycrow View Post
    Control Undead has the same save DC as any 7th level spell. Unless you're thinking of Command Undead, which is 2nd?

    Aside from the whole "rushing in blindly and alone", I'd add that quickened dimensional anchor was probably a wasted spell. Not only was it assuming V would be able to win the fight, but Xykon couldn't run away anyways or risk losing his phylactery.

    Also, clearly their biggest mistake was not teleporting to the nearest magic mart and picking up a ring of protection from negative energy.
    Yeah, I was thinking of Command Undead.

    Oh! I forgot about that ring. Itís inferior to Death Ward, but itís good enough to protect against Energy Drain. Shame that Xykon can cast Finger of Death, thoughÖ
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