A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
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  1. - Top - End - #31
    Orc in the Playground
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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    Wrath of the righteous devoured and is still devouring all of my free time, sorry.

    (Plus the gimmicky idea I had wasm't feeling much inspired)

  2. - Top - End - #32
    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    I... might not make anything. I have a stub but it's just not exciting, you know?

  3. - Top - End - #33
    Titan in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    If anyone needs an extension, happy to offer one: I'd rather a better field of entries than sticking to a timetable. Would push it closer to Halloween as well

  4. - Top - End - #34
    Halfling in the Playground
     
    WhiteWizardGirl

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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    I had a power idea, but it didn’t quite turn out. I’ll post it as a stub after the reveal. I have a really odd flavor mechanics build, though, that I’ll probably submit.
    Trying to get my name changed, sorry for the silly name in the meantime!

    My Cleric of Heironeous does have a holier-than-thou attitude, thank you very much.

  5. - Top - End - #35
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    Part of my problem is that I hate filling out spell tables, but mostly things have just been a little hectic in my neck of the woods. I have a few different stubs, but none of them have really spoken to me.
    Spoiler
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wings of Peace View Post
    "See these cookies? Note how while good they taste sort of bland. Now try these, they're the same cookies but with chocolate chips added. Notice how with the second batch we expended slightly more ingredients but dramatically enhanced the flavor? That's metamagic."
    Quote Originally Posted by Doc Roc View Post
    Seriously, can we kill this misconception now? A wizard is never late, nor is he early. He shops for precisely what he means to.


    Winner of Junkyard Wars 31.

  6. - Top - End - #36
    Troll in the Playground
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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    Not 100% happy with the fluff, but entry is in.

  7. - Top - End - #37
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    Question Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    Any entries on the horizon?

  8. - Top - End - #38
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    WhiteWizardGirl

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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    Yes! Probably about tomorrow.
    Trying to get my name changed, sorry for the silly name in the meantime!

    My Cleric of Heironeous does have a holier-than-thou attitude, thank you very much.

  9. - Top - End - #39
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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    OK time for the reveal.

    Please don't post until I give the all clear. There may be delays posting while I am doing others things, so kindly be patient.

  10. - Top - End - #40
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    Default Kacdaninmyla

    Kacdaninmyla the Spectral
    Spoiler: Story
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    Kacdaninmyla knew that she was special from the day that she’d hatched. Contrary to her clutchmates, she was born with scales of ebony black coating her body in place of the rust red of her siblings. From an early age, she showed an adeptness for magic and the ability to activate the few magical items that the colony had access to. Which was what saved her; she’d been born weak and deformed, and it was only the fact that she carried the blood of the elder wyrms that saved her life, and harnessing her innate gifts were the only thing that prevented her from being culled.

    That didn’t change as the decades marched by. She eventually discovered that she had an arcane link to the dragon inside of her, and she slowly learned how to harness it, channeling arcane energy into powerful blasts of fire and frost from her breath, despite her frailness. Her touch rendered her packmates immune to her breath, and she moved through the side passages of the lair whenever adventurers invaded, tactically using her breath to ignite traps of oil that they’d set up and providing cover for the warrior kobolds.

    Life continued on, and she would have died in obscurity if not for the unique circumstances of her death. She was an elder at that point, though as hale and hearty as she’d ever been. She’d been forbidden from having a clutch of her own, the others deeming her deformities too likely to pass on despite her gifts, but she had mentored generations upon generations of young kobolds in her manner of magic, and the lair grew infamous for their fire breathing inhabitants, and lair studded with deadly traps. Warriors rode up one day and determined that the warren needed to be cleansed, and instead of fighting against them blade to pick, they diverted a nearby dam to flood them out. Hundreds upon hundreds of kobolds died in agony and terror, the dark waters being the last sight in their lives.

    She had been teaching a class of the younglings when the waters began to flood in, and they all drowned with her as she tried in vain to stave off their inevitable doom, alternatively sealing the holes with ice and evaporating the water that seeped in with fire. Eventually the weight on the floors above grew to be too much and the waters rushed in.

    But that was not the end. Her spirit was angry at the death; they’d had no chance, and for all she knew her murderers were above them drinking ale and celebrating a bloodless victory. It took her days to collect enough of her thoughts to reform herself, and longer still to find the will to move herself out of her watery grave, floating by and seeing all the corpses of her family, her clan.

    But move out of her flooded tomb she did, and then she discovered that the warriors had erected a sign, declaring the area made safe by the Warriors of Platinum Swords and marked with a weathered banner of Bahamut. She swore vengeance on the god on that day, as Kurtulmak had sworn vengeance on Garl Glittergold for the similar crime of destroying his home above his own head. She spent centuries in the area, doing her best to prove the banner wrong, eventually giving the new lake a haunted reputation, with people swearing that elemental spirits haunted the area. Eventually a small cult formed on the shores of the lake, and she took advantage of them, manipulating them and urging them to align themselves with her will. She became the hidden driving force of the cult, never appearing in the same visage twice and never, never revealing her true form and history to the ultimately replaceable cultists.

    Spoiler: Outline
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    NE Venerable Ghostly DragonDra Kobold Dragonfire Adept 10/Lord of the Dead 5
    Small Undead [dragonblood, reptilian, incorporeal]

    Stats before death (at 1st level, ECL 1):
    Strength 6 (10, -4 racial), Dexterity 18 (16, +2 racial), Constitution 10 (12, -2 racial), Intelligence 16 (13, +3 age), Wisdom 14 (11, +3 age), Charisma 18 (15, +3 age)

    Stats after death (at 3rd level, ECL 8):
    Strength 6*, Dexterity 18, Constitution —, Intelligence 16, Wisdom 16, Charisma 22

    Stats at the end of time (at 15th level, ECL 20):
    Strength 6*, Dexterity 18, Constitution —, Intelligence 16, Wisdom 16, Charisma 25**

    *You don’t technically have a Strength score while manifesting, but you do while ethereal, so here it is.
    **All level up boosts went into Charisma, but we only have 3 because we miss out on the 16th and 20th level boosts due to Ghostly Dragon LA.

    Spoiler: Table
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    Class Level Class Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Reflex Save Will Save Skills Feats Class Features
    1st Dragonfire Adept 1 +0 +2 +0 +2 Bluff 4, Concentration 4, Diplomacy 4, Knowledge (arcana) 4, Knowledge (religion) 4, Spellcraft 4, UMD 4 DragontouchedB, Dragonwrought Kobold (black dragon), Ability Focus (breath weapon)Flaw Breath weapon 1d6 (15 ft. cone/30 ft. line), least invocations
    2nd Dragonfire Adept 2 +1 +3 +0 +3 Bluff 5, Concentration 5, Diplomacy 5, Knowledge (arcana) 5, Knowledge (religion) 5, Spellcraft 5, UMD 5 Breath effect, scales +2
    3rd Dragonfire Adept 3 +1 +3 +1 +3 Bluff 6, Concentration 6, Diplomacy 6, Knowledge (arcana) 6, Knowledge (religion) 6, Spellcraft 6, UMD 6 Entangling Exhalation Breath weapon 2d6
    Ghostly Dragon LA +1
    Ghostly Dragon LA +2
    Ghostly Dragon LA +3
    Ghostly Dragon LA +4
    Ghostly Dragon LA +5
    4th Dragonfire Adept 4 +2 +4 +1 +4 Bluff 7, Concentration 7, Diplomacy 7, Knowledge (arcana) 7, Knowledge (religion) 7, Spellcraft 7, UMD 7 Dragonkin
    5th Dragonfire Adept 5 +2 +4 +1 +4 Bluff 8, Concentration 8, Diplomacy 8, Knowledge (arcana) 8, Knowledge (religion) 8, Spellcraft 8, UMD 8 Breath weapon 3d6, breath effect
    6th Dragonfire Adept 6 +3 +5 +2 +5 Bluff 9, Concentration 9, Diplomacy 9, Knowledge (arcana) 9, Knowledge (religion) 9, Spellcraft 9, UMD 9 Undead Leadership DR 2/magic, lesser invocations
    7th Dragonfire Adept 7 +3 +5 +2 +5 Bluff 10, Concentration 10, Diplomacy 10, Knowledge (arcana) 10, Knowledge (religion) 10, Spellcraft 10, UMD 10 Breath weapon 4d6
    8th Dragonfire Adept 8 +4 +6 +2 +6 Bluff 11, Concentration 11, Diplomacy 11, Knowledge (arcana) 11, Knowledge (religion) 11, Spellcraft 11, UMD 11 Scales +3
    9th Dragonfire Adept 9 +4 +6 +3 +6 Bluff 12, Concentration 12, Diplomacy 12, Knowledge (arcana) 12, Knowledge (religion) 12, Spellcraft 12, UMD 12 Iron Will Breath weapon 5d6
    10th Dragonfire Adept 10 +5 +7 +3 +7 Bluff 13, Concentration 13, Diplomacy 13, Knowledge (arcana) 13, Knowledge (religion) 13, Spellcraft 13, UMD 13 Breath weapon range doubles (30 ft cone/60 ft. line), breath effect
    11th Lord of the Dead 1 +5 +7 +3 +9 Bluff 14, Concentration 14, Diplomacy 13, Knowledge (arcana) 13, Knowledge (religion) 13, Spellcraft 13, UMD 14 Breath weapon 6d6, greater invocations, turn resistance +1
    12th Lord of the Dead 2 +5 +7 +3 +10 Bluff 15, Concentration 15, Diplomacy 13, Knowledge (arcana) 13, Knowledge (religion) 13, Spellcraft 13, UMD 15 Quicken Manifestation Turn resistance +2, bolstering aura +1
    13th Lord of the Dead 3 +6/+1 +7 +3 +10 Bluff 16, Concentration 16, Diplomacy 13, Knowledge (arcana) 13, Knowledge (religion) 13, Spellcraft 13, UMD 16 Breath weapon 7d6, turn resistance +3, bolstering aura +2
    14th Lord of the Dead 4 +7/+2 +8 +4 +11 Bluff 17, Concentration 17, Diplomacy 13, Knowledge (arcana) 13, Knowledge (religion) 13, Spellcraft 13, UMD 17 Turn resistance +4, bolstering aura +3, animate dead SLA
    15th Lord of the Dead 5 +8/+3 +8 +4 +11 Bluff 18, Concentration 18, Diplomacy 13, Knowledge (arcana) 13, Knowledge (religion) 13, Spellcraft 13, UMD 18 Extra Exhalation Breath Weapon 8d6, turn resistance +5, bolstering aura +4, unholy aura SLA
    Flaw Taken: Shaky (-2 to ranged attack rolls)

    Spoiler: Invocations
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    Caster Level Invocation Grade Invocations Known Specific Invocations
    1st Least 1 Endure Exposure
    2nd Least 1 Endure Exposure
    3rd Least 2 Beguiling Influence, Endure Exposure
    4th Least 2 Beguiling Influence, Endure Exposure
    5th Least 2 Beguiling Influence, Endure Exposure
    6th Lesser 3 Beguiling Influence, Endure Exposure, Voidsense
    7th Lesser 3 Beguiling Influence, Endure Exposure, Voidsense
    8th Lesser 4 Beguiling Influence, Charm, Endure Exposure, Voidsense
    9th Lesser 4 Beguiling Influence, Charm, Endure Exposure, Voidsense
    10th Lesser 4 Beguiling Influence, Charm, Endure Exposure, Voidsense
    11th Greater 5 Beguiling Influence, Charm, Chilling Fog, Endure Exposure, Voidsense
    12th Greater 5 Beguiling Influence, Charm, Chilling Fog, Endure Exposure, Voidsense
    13th Greater 6 Beguiling Influence, Charm, Chilling Fog, Draconic Toughness, Endure Exposure, Voidsense
    14th Greater 6 Beguiling Influence, Charm, Chilling Fog, Draconic Toughness, Endure Exposure, Voidsense
    15th Greater 6 Beguiling Influence, Charm, Chilling Fog, Draconic Toughness, Endure Exposure, Voidsense

    Breath Effects Chosen: Frost Breath @ 2nd level, Slow Breath @ 5th level, Thunder Breath @ 10th level

    Spoiler: Tactics
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    In Life, Before Death
    At low levels, you’re still alive. That sucks. We’re going to have to do something about that. You’re an old, cranky, creaky-boned old kobold with only a few decades left to live (thanks to your incredible Charisma score and how it interacts with the Dragonwrought feat, letting you ignore ability score penalties due to age). Alas, your breath weapon kinda sucks for these first few levels (though Ability Focus helps mitigate that with a +2 boost to the DC), but you can spam it every round, and since you picked up Endure Exposure, you don’t care about friendly fire, as all of your allies are immune to your fiery/freezing breath. With your aforementioned excellent Charisma score, skill ranks and Beguiling Influence, you’re an excellent party face, so try to avoid fights if you can.

    When you can afford it, you’ll want to undergo the Draconic Rite of Passage. It’s only 100gp and 1 hit point to get a 1/day SLA for the rest of your (effectively infinite) lifetime. Nab disguise self as it lets you look like something significantly more intimidating than a wizened, deformed kobold.

    In Death, As In Life
    After you die at level 3 and are brought back as a Ghostly Dragon is where things really start to kick into high gear. Note that this is the Ghostly Dragon template from the Draconomicon, not the MM Ghost template (despite sharing the +5 LA), which we can access thanks to the Dragonwrought feat (the template requires a Dragon with a Charisma score of at least 8. Yeah, we can hit that). The +5 LA is awful. And I do mean that in the worst way. It sucks. But… we do actually get a lot out of it. Let’s hit them in order applied.
    • We get a fly speed for free! 30 foot fly speed with perfect maneuverability ain’t nothing to sneeze at.
    • Our natural AC bonus (which we actually have, thanks to our Scales class feature, but unfortunately overwriting our +1 racial) applies only against other ethereal attackers, but when we manifest we get a deflection bonus to AC equal to our Charisma modifier, which is nice and healthy.
    • We get an incorporeal touch attack, which uses our far superior Dexterity rather than Strength to calculate the attack roll. It’s a touch attack, so our low BAB isn’t as punishing as it could be. We don’t really care, though - we’re all about spamming our breath weapon, but it’s a nice fallback option.
    • Here’s where it gets spicy. All of our special attacks are changed to be based off of our Charisma instead of whatever they were before, so our breath weapon from Dragonfire Adept gets a lot scarier than it was. We also manage to add an extremely scary weapon to our arsenal. Our Gray Mist breath weapon deals 12 points of Strength, Constitution and Dexterity ability drain. This is the reason why we set our age to Venerable; on the aging chart for kobolds in RotD, 120+ hits that sweet spot for both Great Wyrm and Venerable. So 12 age categories. And since it deals ability drain equal to 1 per age category… yeah. This breath weapon is only usable 3 times per day, sadly, and you need to wait 1d4 rounds before using it again. From what I can tell, it’s a cone that’d occupy the same area as any existing cone shaped breath weapon, so this works to our advantage. Endure Exposure does double work here, because your allies are immune to this breath weapon as well, since the invocation just specifies ‘your breath weapon’, not ‘the breath weapon granted to you by this class’. Sweet.
    • Energy Drain: As a touch attack, we can deal 2 negative levels to a creature. There’s no save to avoid this, it just happens. Awesome. Alas, it’s a standard action to touch, but it’s still a hell of a debuff.
    • We’ve also got an alternate touch attack that instead deals 1d4 Strength and Constitution damage, with a crit turning it into ability drain instead. Why we would ever use this when we have the other touch attack, I don’t know.
    • Manifestation. That’s right, we get all of those tasty ghost goodies about being tucked away on the Ethereal Plane. We’re darn good at sneaking (with a +8 racial bonus to Hide from being a Ghostly Dragon, +8 size bonus thanks to the kobold’s Slight Build, another +2 from the Dragonwrought feat, and we don’t care about Move Silently because we’re perfectly silent), and walls are mere suggestions to us.
    • Special Qualities is what sealed the deal on this template. Originally, this entry was a Dracolich, but they’ve got a really inconvenient method of coming back to unlife. And since you’re sucking up +5 LA, you’re going to be hilariously fragile. Not so for the ghost. I mean, it’s not an easy check in those first few levels to make, not going to lie. It’s also hard to actually kill you in these early levels, considering all of your ghostly immunities and ways to escape harm. But later, you’ll be laughing because by ECL 20 you’re effectively immortal considering that at 15 HD you can roll a 1 and still come back. Having sworn vengeance against Bahamut and dedicating yourself to his destruction means that you’re not peacefully moving on.
    • +4 turn resistance and Charisma are icing on the spooky cake.

    Time Immemorial
    The rest of the build builds off of the base that we’ve built here. Your breath weapon damage slowly increases with your caster level (see page 24 of Dragon Magic; your invocations and breath weapon scale with your CL if the prestige class grants “+1 of existing spellcasting class”, which Lord of the Dead provides), and you stay in the class long enough to double the area of your breath weapon (including the Gray Mist breath weapon from your template), which is now a 30 foot cone.

    Undead Leadership is a massive boon (as it is to everyone else in this competition). You’re going to want to pick up something like a Necropolitan Dread Necromancer with the full Corpsecrafter line to grant you your minionmancy details. Nabbing an undead cohort means that you can grab something remotely level-equivalent, since it’s based off of your ECL, not your character level, and this is extremely valuable to you. Y’all are smart enough to take it from there: this competition is about the Main Character, not the flunkies. Worth noting that you can make all of your flunkies immune to your damaging/entangling breath weapon via Endure Exposure (and they’re immune to your energy drain breath weapon thanks to being undead), so don’t worry about friendly fire. Those flunkies are also roughly level-appropriate; despite the hit to your Leadership score because of your LA: your Charisma score is high enough to mitigate most of the hit.

    We pick up some nasty tactics after our death. Worth calling out is the Slow Breath effect and the Chilling Fog invocation. The former is just… yeah. On a failed save, it’s 2 rounds of slow in an area that they’re already entangled in. Slow cripples enemies hardcore; denying them their full round action and restricting them to a move or standard is delicious. The best part about the breath effect, however, is that even if they make the (Fortitude) save, they’re still hit with slow for a round. Your allies love you. With the Thunder Breath breath effect, you can easily toggle your rounds between slowing a huge area or dealing respectable sonic damage in the same area (because you can’t use the same breath effect two rounds in a row).

    Chilling Fog is just better solid fog, and thanks to Voidsense you can see through it and still target them with your breath weapons. Draconic Toughness gives you a bit of a refreshing hp cushion (free THP equal to CL), and Charm is the neat charm monster, not charm person.

    Quicken Manifestation lets you slip between the veil easily (free action once per round to manifest, though retreating is still the standard action). It is wonderful, and Extra Exhalation gives you a 4th use of your Gray Mist breath weapon.

    What does the Secret Ingredient add, you ask? Increasing Turn Resistance makes you harder to turn, which is a sorely needed bonus, given that it’s based off of HD, and you’re losing 5 points due to LA (though 4 points are mitigated through your template). Bolstering Aura helps out your minions, which you cannot create natively (before ECL 19). The SLAs are nice bonuses and not entirely awful reasons to take the class, not going to lie. We can’t actually access any spells through our class, despite being a spellcaster, so it’s literally the only way that we can get the spells.

    The first lets you create your own minions (and since they’re SLAs, no component cost and it’s only a standard action to create them!) while the latter isn’t as useful for you. The turn resistance is always helpful, but you don’t benefit from the AC bonus (it’s the same type as your manifestation type, unfortunately), and you’re immune to mental influence anyways. And as a ghost, you don’t actually have a body to possess. The SR isn’t insignificant, though, and doling out Strength damage to a creature that actually manages to hit you in melee is better than nothing. Since you’re a Charisma caster, this actually synergizes pretty well for the purposes of the saving throw on it, too (as SLAs are Charisma-based unless otherwise specified), so you’re looking at a DC of 25 naked.

    Spoiler: Notes
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    First and foremost: yes, we can use the Entangling Exhalation feat despite being undead. It requires the [dragonblood] subtype, which we lose when we take the Dragonwrought feat (you automatically lose the subtype when you gain the Dragon type). However, following level up rules in the PHB, class features come after you pick feats, as the final thing added. So we lose the subtype with our feat selection, but we gain it again with the bonus feat (Dragontouched) granted by our class feature.

    Nowhere in the Dragonblood subtype sidebar (RotD, page 4) does it say that Dragons cannot obtain the [dragonblood] subtype; it just says they lose it upon acquiring the Dragon type. We start with the subtype, lose it when we change types, and get it again. It’s important, because when we become Undead we lose the Dragon type, but this way we keep the [dragonblood] subtype, allowing us to continue using the feat freely.

    This build also (ab)uses the infamous “are dragonwrought kobolds true dragons” debate. In fact, it’s most unique trick (the breath weapon of gray mist) depends on it,because it’s based on the fact that you have age categories. I could have gone a lot harder on this angle; Sovereign Archetypes being the obvious doubling down. I chose to keep it to a minimum in order to make the one trick work.

    Spoiler: Sources
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    • Core (PHB + DMG)
    • Dragon Magic
    • Draconomicon
    • Races of the Dragon
    • Libris Mortis
    • Dead Life web enhancement

  11. - Top - End - #41
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    Default Senex Fabius

    Senex Fabius
    CG—>CN—>N Naenkrau Illumian Ghoul Truenamer 11/Apostle of Peace 2/Contemplative 1/Warlock 1/Lord of the Dead 5

    The old man stepped out of the mist, his cloak billowing behind him and smoke curling off of a soft and effervescent luminescence that seemed to fill the area around him. As he shuffled forwards, a suggestion of a sunken yet wiry skeleton appeared in the folds of his common clothing. The hair on the back of my neck lept up. Looking down, I realized that the soft loam of the graveyard had been subsumed by a tide of bone creatures, hopping silently towards me. The man raised his arms, and spoke softly, in words that were stolen by the fog before they reached my ears. A darkness in the fog resolved into a cloud of hundreds more bats, rising on a vortex of dead air and silent wings.

    Then the man spoke, in words that I did hear and comprehend. He described my current troubles, my life, my history, the history of my people. He recounted my emotions back to me as I experienced them. The words seared themselves into my brain, wrapped themselves around my will, and drew the strength from from my heart.

    I turned to run, only to see more silent and vaguely inhuman shapes emerge from the fog. I turned to fight, only to suddenly find my will broken. I tried to draw on my dragonmark, only to find its power blocked by some unknown arcane energy. I collapsed, and let the wings of the bats whisper over me, entombing my body.

    Some indeterminate amount of time later, I was once again permitted to move. I could not resist the urge to tail the hermit and his entourage, and what I found shook me to the very core, for I was in fact lucky to escape with my life, if not my will. Watching from the shadow of a tombstone, I watched as a creature hovering above the grotesque cloud of bats was brought down, straining against invisible chains. I watched innumerable bats descend, covering its body with their bones and unliving flesh. I watched as the remainder of the forms and bats dissipated back into the mist. I watched a brief burst of searing radiance, and then there was naught more to watch. The cemetery became still as bone save for a hiss of dead joints leaping into the night air.


    Spoiler: Tables, Lists, and Other Tabulated Information
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    Level Class Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Reflex Save Will Save Skills Feats Features
    1st Ghoul 1/Truenamer 1 0 0 0 2 Truespeak (+4) 4; Diplomacy (+4) 4; Concentration (+4) 4; Sense Motive (+4 CC) 2; Knowledge (nobility) (+4) 4; Knowledge (history) (+4) 4; Knowledge (arcana) (+4) 4; Knowledge (religion) (+4) 4; Knowledge (local) (+4) 4; Sacred Vow Turn Resistance +2, Bite, Known Personal Truename
    2nd Truenamer 2 1 0 0 3 Truespeak (+1) 5; Diplomacy (+1) 5; Concentration (+1) 5; Sense Motive (+1 CC) 2.5; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 5; Knowledge (history) (+1) 5; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 5; Knowledge (religion) (+1) 5; Knowledge (local) (+1) 5; Knowledge Focus (history)
    3rd Truenamer 3 2 1 1 3 Truespeak (+1) 6; Diplomacy (+1) 6; Concentration (+1) 6; Sense Motive (+1 CC) 3; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 6; Knowledge (history) (+1) 6; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 6; Knowledge (religion) (+1) 6; Knowledge (local) (+1) 6; Vow of Poverty AC bonus +5, endure elements
    4th Truenamer 4 3 1 1 4 Truespeak (+1) 7; Diplomacy (+1) 7; Concentration (+1) 7; Sense Motive (+1 CC) 3.5; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 7; Knowledge (history) (+1) 7; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 7; Knowledge (religion) (+1) 7; Knowledge (local) (+1) 7; Vow of Nonviolence (exalted) Exalted strike +1 (magic)
    5th Truenamer 5 3 1 1 4 Truespeak (+1) 8; Diplomacy (+1) 8; Concentration (+1) 8; Sense Motive 3.5; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 8; Knowledge (history) (+1) 8; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 8; Knowledge (religion) (+1) 8; Knowledge (local) 7; Collector of Stories; Sustenance
    6th Truenamer 6 4 2 2 5 Truespeak (+1) 9; Diplomacy (+1) 9; Concentration (+1) 9; Sense Motive (+1 CC) 4; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 9; Knowledge (history) (+1) 9; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 9; Knowledge (religion) (+1) 9; Knowledge (local) (+1) 8; Collector of Stories; Ability Focus (vow of peace), Vow of Peace (Exalted) Truename Research, AC bonus +6, deflection +1
    7th Warlock 1 4 2 2 7 Truespeak (+2 CC) 10; Diplomacy (+1) 10; Concentration (+1) 10; Sense Motive 4; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 10; Knowledge (history) (+1) 10; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 10; Knowledge (religion) (+1) 10; Knowledge (local) 8; Collector of Stories; Eldritch Blast +1d6, Least Invocation, Resistance +1, ability score enhancement +2
    8th Apostle of Peace 1 4 4 4 9 Truespeak (+2 CC) 11; Diplomacy (+1) 11; Concentration (+1) 11; Sense Motive (+2) 6; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 11; Knowledge (history) (+1) 11; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 11; Knowledge (religion) (+1) 11; Knowledge (local) 8; Collector of Stories; Nymph's Kiss (exalted) Turn Undead, Natural armor +1, mind shielding
    9th Apostle of Peace 2 5 5 5 10 Truespeak (+2 CC) 12; Diplomacy (+1) 12; Concentration (+1) 12; Sense Motive (+2) 8; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 12; Knowledge (history) (+1) 12; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 12; Knowledge (religion) (+1) 12; Knowledge (local) 8; Collector of Stories; Undead Leadership Pacifying Touch, AC bonus +7
    10th Lord of the Dead (advancing Warlock) 1 5 5 5 12 Truespeak (+2 CC) 13; Diplomacy (+1) 13; Concentration (+1) 13; Sense Motive (+2) 10; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 13; Knowledge (history) (+1) 13; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 13; Knowledge (religion) (+1) 13; Knowledge (local) 8; Collector of Stories; Nimbus of Light (exalted) Turn resistance +1, Exalted strike +2 (good), damage reduction 5/magic
    11th Contemplative (advancing AoP) 1 5 5 5 14 Truespeak (+2 CC) 14; Diplomacy (+1) 14; Concentration (+1) 14; Sense Motive (+2) 12; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 14; Knowledge (history) (+1) 14; Knowledge (arcana) (+2 CC) 14; Knowledge (religion) (+1) 14; Knowledge (local) 8; Collector of Stories; Bonus Domain (portal), Divine Health
    12th Lord of the Dead 2 6 5 5 15 Truespeak (+2 CC) 15; Diplomacy (+1) 15; Concentration (+1) 15; Sense Motive (+2) 14; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 15; Knowledge (history) (+1) 15; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 15; Knowledge (religion) (+1) 15; Knowledge (local) (+1) 9; Collector of Stories; Corpsecrafter, Holy Radiance (exalted) Turn Resistance +2, Bolstering Aura +1, AC bonus +8, deflection +2, greater sustenance
    13th Lord of the Dead 3 7 6 6 15 Truespeak (+2 CC) 16; Diplomacy (+1) 16; Concentration (+1) 16; Sense Motive (+2) 16; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 16; Knowledge (history) (+1) 16; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 16; Knowledge (religion) 15; Knowledge (local) (+2) 11; Collector of Stories; Turn Resistance +3, Bolstering Aura +2, Resistance +2, energy resistance 5
    14th Lord of the Dead 4 8 6 6 16 Truespeak (+2 CC) 17; Diplomacy (+1) 17; Concentration (+1) 17; Sense Motive (+1) 17; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 17; Knowledge (history) (+1) 17; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 17; Knowledge (religion) 15; Knowledge (local) (+2) 13; Knowledge (the planes) (+1) 1; Collector of Stories; Exalted Turning (exalted) Animate Dead, Turn Resistance +5, Bolstering Aura +4, Exalted strike +3, freedom of movement
    15th Lord of the Dead 5 8 6 6 16 Truespeak (+2 CC) 18; Diplomacy (+1) 18; Concentration (+1) 18; Sense Motive (+1) 18; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 18; Knowledge (history) (+1) 18; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 18; Knowledge (religion) 15; Knowledge (local) (+2) 15; Knowledge (the planes) (+2) 3; Collector of Stories; Destructive Retribution Unholy Aura, Turn Resistance +5, Bolstering Aura +4, AC bonus +9, damage reduction 5/evil
    16th Truenamer 7 9 6 6 16 Truespeak (+1) 19; Diplomacy (+1) 19; Concentration (+1) 19; Sense Motive (+2 CC) 19; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 19; Knowledge (history) (+1) 19; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 19; Knowledge (religion) 15; Knowledge (dungeoneering) (+1) 1; Knowledge (local) (+2) 17; Knowledge (the planes) (+3) 6; Collector of Stories; Vow of Abstinance (exalted) Knowledge Focus (religion), Natural armor +2
    17th Truenamer 8 10 6 6 17 Truespeak (+1) 20; Diplomacy (+1) 20; Concentration (+1) 20; Sense Motive (+2 CC) 20; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 20; Knowledge (history) (+1) 20; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 20; Knowledge (religion) 15; Knowledge (dungeoneering) (+2) 3; Knowledge (local) (+2) 19; Knowledge (the planes) (+3) 9; Collector of Stories; Recitation of the Mindful State (bonus) Exalted strike +4, resistance +3, regeneration
    18th Truenamer 9 10 7 7 17 Truespeak (+1) 21; Diplomacy (+1) 21; Concentration (+1) 21; Sense Motive (+2 CC) 21; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 21; Knowledge (history) (+1) 21; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 21; Knowledge (religion) 15; Knowledge (dungeoneering) (+2) 5; Knowledge (local) (+2) 21; Knowledge (the planes) (+3) 12; Collector of Stories; Undead Empathy, Vow of Chastity (Exalted) See the Named 1/day, AC bonus +10, deflection +3, true seeing
    19th Truenamer 10 11 7 7 18 Truespeak (+1) 22; Diplomacy (+1) 22; Concentration (+1) 22; Sense Motive (+2 CC) 22; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 22; Knowledge (history) (+1) 22; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 22; Knowledge (religion) 15; Knowledge (dungeoneering) (+4) 9; Knowledge (local) (+1) 22; Knowledge (the planes) (+3) 15; Collector of Stories; Knowledge Focus (arcana), damage reduction 10/evil
    20th Truenamer 11 12 7 7 18 Truespeak (+1) 23; Diplomacy (+1) 23; Concentration (+1) 23; Sense Motive (+2 CC) 23; Knowledge (nobility) (+1) 23; Knowledge (history) (+1) 23; Knowledge (arcana) (+1) 23; Knowledge (religion) 15; Knowledge (dungeoneering) (+4) 13; Knowledge (local) (+1) 23; Knowledge (the planes) (+3) 18; Collector of Stories; Gift of Faith (exalted) Exalted strike +5, energy resistance 15
    Ability Scores
    Abilities Initial Race / Template Level 4 Level 8 Level 12 Level 16 Level 20
    Str 8 5 (-3) 5 5 5 5 5
    Dex 10 7 (-3) 7 7 7 7 9 (+2 exalted @ 19)
    Con 8 - - - - - -
    Int 18 20 (+2) 21 (+1) 24 (+2 exalted @ 7) (+1) 27 (+2 exalted @ 11) (+1) 30 (+2 exalted @ 15) (+1) 33 (+2 exalted @ 19) (+1)
    Wis 16 18 (+2) 18 18 20 (+2 exalted @ 11) 22 (+2 exalted @ 15) 24 (+2 exalted @ 19)
    Cha 12 14 (+2) 14 14 14 16 (+2 exalted @ 15) 18 (+2 exalted @ 19)
    Spells/Day, Invocations, and Utterances
    Level Class 0th 1st 2nd 3rd New Invocations New Utterances
    1st Ghoul 1/Truenamer 1 - - - - - Minor Word of Nurturing
    2nd Truenamer 2 - - - - - Universal Aptitude
    3rd Truenamer 3 - - - - - Strike of Might
    4th Truenamer 4 - - - - - Inertia Surge, Fortify Armor
    5th Truenamer 5 - - - - - Hidden Truth
    6th Truenamer 6 - - - - - Incarnation of Angels
    7th Warlock 1 - - - - Summon Swarm
    8th Apostle of Peace 1 4 2 + 1 - -
    9th Apostle of Peace 2 5 3 + 1 0 + 1 -
    10th Lord of the Dead 1 5 3 + 1 0 + 1 - Beguiling Influence
    11th Contemplative 1 5 3 + 2 1 + 1 0 + 1
    12th Lord of the Dead 2 5 3 + 2 1 + 1 0 + 1
    13th Lord of the Dead 3 5 3 + 2 1 + 1 0 + 1 Entropic Warding
    14th Lord of the Dead 4 5 3 + 2 1 + 1 0 + 1
    15th Lord of the Dead 5 5 3 + 2 1 + 2 0 + 1 The Dead Walk
    16th Truenamer 7 5 3 + 2 1 + 2 0 + 1 Agitate Metal, Seek the Sky
    17th Truenamer 8 5 3 + 2 1 + 2 0 + 1 Fog from the Void, Energy Negation
    18th Truenamer 9 5 3 + 2 1 + 2 0 + 1 Vision Sharpened
    19th Truenamer 10 5 3 + 2 1 + 2 0 + 2 Caster Lens
    20th Truenamer 11 5 3 + 2 1 + 2 0 + 2 Rebuild Item, Spell Rebirth
    Spells Prepared:
    0th Detect Posion, Detect Magic, Light, Guidance, Mending
    1st Command, Sanctuary, Detect Undead, Detect Undead, Detect Undead
    2nd Eagle's Splendor, Eagle's Splendor, Eagle's Splendor
    3rd Dimensional Anchor, Magic Circle Against Evil
    Level 20 Breakdowns:
    Truespeak Breakdown:
    23 Ranks
    2 Illumian
    11 Int Bonus
    5 Universal Aptitude
    9 Motivate Int (including Eagle's Splendor)
    2 Int Bonus from Fox's Cunning
    10 Paragnostic Assembly
    1 Minimum Roll

    63 Total


    Diplomacy Breakdown:
    23 Ranks
    4 Cha Bonus
    5 Universal Aptitude
    2 Nymph's Kiss
    4 Vow of Peace
    1 Minimum Roll
    2 Cha Bonus from Eagle's Splendor
    9 Motivate Cha (including Eagle's Splendor)
    2 Sacred Vow
    6 Beguiling Influence
    2 Sense Motive Synergy

    60 Total

    Warlock Caster Level Breakdown
    6 Warlock
    2 Caster Lens
    2 Illumian

    10 Total

    Cohort Cha Breakdown (minimum):
    18 Base
    4 Vampire
    4 Eagle's Splendor
    2 Increases

    28 Total

    Paragnostic Assembly Affiliation Breakdown:
    1 Has levels in a class that has at least three Knowledge skills as class skills
    3 Can cast 3rd-level or higher divination spells
    14 Knowledge Skills
    10 Character levels
    1 Is a devout and actively practicing worshiper of knowledge as a principle
    1 Knowledge Affiliation

    30 Total

    Knowledge Affiliation Breakdown

    2 Can cast 3rd level divination spells
    14 Knowledge skills
    10 Character levels
    4+ Convert followers


    30 Total

    Leadership Breakdown
    20 Levels
    4 Charisma mod
    1 Special power (Aura of Peace)
    2 Great Renown
    2 Stable base of Operations (Paragnostic Assembly)

    Spoiler: Cohort:
    Show

    In order to not over-rely on DM fiat, I'm not going to be fully building out the cohort. However, our ideal cohort is a Vampire Marshal 3/Favored Soul X with maxed Cha, Fox's Cunning, Motivate Int, and Motivate Cha.

    Spoiler: Explanation:
    Show

    Apostle of Peace and a PrC with a non-good requirement do not exactly scream compatible. I think everything here is technically RAW, but I will happily acknowledge that it is in no way RAI. However, I'd argue that this is a much more healthy and playable version of the Apostle of Peace, so my RAW-based rulings are in service of the greater good. I apologize for any shoddy narrative building, part of that is that I wanted to explain my rules interpretations fully and keep this at a reasonable length.

    To start with, our race is interesting. Senex begins life as an Illumian, the patriarch of the House of Fabia, one of the most respected noble houses in Anthem. He's of a scholarly bent, and is well-educated about the broader world. However, that all changes when a miscriant necromancer triggers an outbreak of ghouls in the city. The Fabiian guards were away from their posts, engaging in drunken debauchery, and Senex's frail form is struck down and stolen by a ghoul, and his granddaughter is murdered in her crib. With his dying breath, Senex vows to pursue revenge, and enters the ghoul monster class when he is revived as a ghoul, which kicks off a rather bizarre set of rules interactions.

    Per Libris Mortis page 34, contrary to the normal rules on monster classes (that one must take the whole monster class at once),
    "If the character has no class levels, he simply gains one level of the appropriate undead class and may multiclass freely between that undead class and normal class levels."
    Because specific beats general, this means Senex is free to take whatever class he wishes next. At this point, Senex has only 1 ghoul monster class hit die, because according to the SRD,
    "Creatures with 1 or less HD replace their monster levels with their character levels. The monster loses the attack bonus, saving throw bonuses, skills, and feats granted by its 1 monster HD and gains the attack bonus, save bonuses, skills, feats, and other class abilities of a 1st-level character of the appropriate class."
    In other words, by the same rules that let you play a human without having a human hit die, Senex has lost his illumian BAB, Saves, Ski
    lls, and Feats and replaced them with the Ghoul ones, while also gaining both Ghoul and Illumian traits.

    The magic of his Final Utterance leads Senex to pursue Truenaming. However, when he attempts to take his second level, the SRD rule triggers AGAIN, because Senex's ghoul hit die is both a character level (as it's a level in a monster class) and a monster HD (again, because it's a ghoul HD). This means Senex is now a CG Illumian Ghoul Truenamer with 1 hit die, with a sacred vow to avenge his grandaughter. Unfortunately for Senex, low-level truenamers are not known for their power, so he bides his time and continues to gather his strength.

    Per Cityscape page 59, as a former member of the upper class, Senex may treat Knowledge (history), Knowledge (nobility and royality), and Diplomacy as class skills.

    Level 5 Snapshot:
    Things have somehow gotten worse for Senex in terms of combat prowess. Disillusioned by his initial faliures, he's sworn to shun the trappings of his former life that let him grow soft and complacent, and has forsworn all material posessions and violence against humanoids. This is somewhat awkward for him, and he mostly relies on his Knowledge abilities to serve as a very odd minstriel and avoid fighting. His total Truespeak mod is also only +20 with Universal Aptitude, which is somewhat limiting. More limiting, however, is that his best combat option is Reversed Minor Word of Nurturing.

    Fed up with Truenaming's ability to turn him into a holy avenger, Senex decides to withdraw into meditation. He emerges a new ghoul, having realized that direct action, even against undead and other abominations, only serves to continue the cycle of violence. He dallies with a nymph before returning to his broader mission, reinvigorated and newly driven towards justice. Senex cultivates his ability to prevent violence, swearing a further vow of peace and focusing on heightening the protective effect produced. He also draws on powers beyond those of his voice, briefly experiencing the seductive power tappable by warlocks before swearing fealty to an end to strife.
    Digression on Exalted Abilities with Non-Good Alignments:
    There are two major categories of exalted abilities Senex cares about: Apostle of Peace class levels and Exalted feats. Exalted feats are the easier problem to address. Good Alignment is not technically a prerequisite for any of the exalted feats Senex wishes to take. Instead, the Book of Exalted Deads contains the following general rule on page 39:
    Only
    intelligent characters of good alignment and the highest moral
    standards can acquire exalted feats, and only as a gift from pow-
    erful agents of good—deities, celestials, or similar creatures.[
    ..] A character who
    willingly and willfully commits an evil act loses all benefits
    from all his exalted feats. She regains these benefits if she
    atones for her violations (see Sin and Atonement in Chapter 1)
    In other words, unlike the general rule for feats, Senex can retain the benefits of current exalted feats despite being non-good, as long as he performs no evil acts.

    Seperately, on page 29, BoED describes the benefits of voluntary poverty as "spiritual" rather than derived from gifts. This implies that Vow of Poverty constitutes a specific exception to the general rules about aquiring bonus exalted feats, and that Senex can continue to gain the benefits of new exalted feats he gains through Vow of Poverty. Even if not, it turns out that this is mostly irrelevant, because exalted feats are not very good.

    Apostle of Peace is a bit trickier. It has a prereq of Good alignment for the first level; by the standard Ur-Priest/Dragon Disciple argument, and the fact that this is not a Complete book, this does not apply to later levels. However, BoED includes the following global rule for exalted PrCs
    A character who ceases to be of good alignment or who will-
    fully commits an evil act loses all special abilities and spells
    acquired in this prestige class, and may not gain new levels in
    that class. She may regain her abilities if she atones for her vio-
    lations (see Sin and Atonement in Chapter 1).
    Luckily, there's still a way around this. The Sin and Atonement text is probably too long of a text for me to safely snippet, but it does not mandate that we actually change alignment, merely that we show remorse for our actions and repent. Notably, by the above rules text, this applies to both becoming a non-good alignment and commiting an evil act, meaning we can atone for changing alignments without changing back. Back to Senex!

    After beginning to study peace, Senex ran into some difficulty on an exploration through the forest. His new vow prevented him from intervening after his pacifying abilities failed at calming a boar goring a farmer. While he adhered to the letter of his vow, he could not ease his troubled conscious as he left the corpse of the farmer. However, as he walked further, he realized that any action he took to quell the boar would have deprived it of life as surely as it was killing the human. Who was he to intervene? Was not the reason he swore his vows in the first place to prevent more violence? With every beat of his footfalls, the world around him appeared more balanced, more natural, more perfectely ordered. Returning to the town, Senex felt his powers slipping away as he swore to adhere to a new interpretation of his vows: he would strive towards a philosophy of non-intervention in all but the most extreme cases, devoting his life to one of study instead. He returned to the t
    emple, sought forgiveness and atonement for his new thoughts, and was assigned to seek out and study a cult pursuing blood sacrifice. On this mission, he encountered several enslaved undead, inspiring him to spread his new philosophy to other life-challenged beings. He returned to the temple for the last time, his powers restored, and sought membership in the Paragnostic Assembly and the Church of Knowledge.

    Vow of Poverty, thankfully, obligates donations of treasure. Senex merely redirected some of those donations to the Paragnostic Assembly, realizing their mission of more detailed understanding as one of utmost importance, and began to embrace his own undeath.

    Level 10:
    Senex has managed to get some undead followers, which is marginally helpful in making him not-useless. However, nothing has fundementally changed, although he can now summon a swarm. He isn't allowed to use Eldritch Blast against anyone living.

    However, Pacifying Touch is an extremely strong no-save, no-sr, just stop fighting ability, making Senex far better at avoiding fights.

    Between level 10 and 15, not much changes in terms of Senex's outlook on the world. In his travels, he encounters a Slaad, and rejects the brand of chaos that it stands for entirely. Instead, he begins to appriciate the perspective offered by being undead more and more. He begins to mostly intervene to keep the peace, rejecting all human-sponsored violence as unnatural.
    Level 15:

    Level 15 begins to get interesting. Senex picks up The Dead Walk and a 1/day animate dead SLA. He does not yet have a strategy for using it in its permanant mode, but turning any corpse into his servant is a quite useful trick to make combat go a bit more towards his favor.

    Near the end of his career, Senex is drawn towards the truenaming magic of his racial beginnings once more. He learns how to manipulate the arcane currents around him, bending every element of the universe to his will.

    Level 20:
    This whole build likely seems somewhat contrivied, but I promise, there is a reason, and this is it. Yes, this build only comes online after 20 levels, but what can you do.

    At level 20, Senex can use The Dead Walk at level 10, allowing him to permanantly animate 20 HD of undead per casting with a gem worth 500 GP. Senex is explicitly allowed to beg this from other members of his party, in this case, his cohort. By delaying his action, using The Dead Walk, and then using Rebuild Item on the onyx the next turn, Senex can restore the now-"worthless, burned-out shells" back into their previous form. Rebuild Item is expliclty far more powerful than Make Whole or the like, and can in fact "restore an item destroyed within the last round to its normal, undamaged state," including magic items. With a base DC of 25 and a minimum truespeak roll of 63, Senex can do this 20 times, animating 400 hd of undead every morning at no material cost.

    In order to get corpses to fuel this animation, Senex can use summon swarm (bat). Normally, the swarm would disappear when killed. However, Senex can prevent this by using a Magic Circle Against Evil combined with a Dimensional Anchor (from the Portal domain). Dimensional Anchor specifically "does not prevent summoned creatures from disappearing at the end of a summoning spell," but it makes no mention of summoned creatures disappearing when killed, and the magic circle serves to anchor the non-good bats in place.

    Now Senex just needs to find a way to break apart the swarm and safely kill the bats without violating his oaths. As a first step, all of Senex's followers can safely unarmed strike the bat swarm, dealing nonlethal damage.A swarm rendered unconscious by means of nonlethal damage becomes disperse. In this case, however, the creatures cannot leave the magic circle, leaving 5000 individual bats.

    Vow of Peace requires the following:
    • You may not deal real damage or ability damage to such creatures through spells or weapons.
    • You may not target them with death effects, disintegrate, or other spells that have the immediate potential to cause death or great harm.
    • You also may not use nondamaging spells to incapacitate or weaken living foes so that your allies can kill them--if you incapacitate a foe, you must take him prisoner.


    None of these prohibit Senex from agitate metal'ing a piece of metal immeditately outside the circle into being hot enough to deal damage when touched, followed by ordering 4 undead bats from yesterday to pick it up. Senex's SLA deals damage to an undead creature, which is allowed. Then, the creatures explodes, killing every single one of the bats. Senex has not dealt any damage to living creatures, nor has he targetted them with any spells, damaging or nondamaging, and he hasn't even technically incapacitated any foes.

    Senex now has 5000 bat corpses, of which he should animate most as skeletons (for 1/4 HD) and some as zombies (for flight), resulting in about 1400 bats. Due to destructive retribution, every one is a minature bomb dealing 1d6 damage, and healing other undead for the same amount. He can only control about 160 of them directly through animate dead, but a +60 diplomacy check and undead empathy allows him to rush diplomacy attempts on all of them, turning them "helpful" from "hostile". Before doing this, however, while still commanding them after animating them, he should order them to go into sacks carried by zombie followers to block line of effect and allow for easy transport.

    Then, an encounter consists of attempts to peaceably resolve the encounter, followed by a Reversed Seek the Sky to down any fliers, an order to however many helpful bats Senex wants to spend to follow an enemy, and a method of killing them. Senex has three ways of doing this: 1. Holy Radiance auto-kills every bat within 10 feet. 2. Exalted Turning means allows him to kill only a selected number of bats for a more controlled killing. 3. Agitate metal+"pick up that item for me"=easily customizable number of dead bats, and therefore damage. This damage is practically unavoidable as well, giving Senex a very reliable last resort if his peace-based abilities fail.

    Finally, for more "no"-power, Senex's top-tier church of Knowledge affiliation allows him to disable an opponent's ability.



    Spoiler: Sources:
    Show

    I've sourced out most rules in the text, however, Complete Arcane (for warlock and invocations), Tome of Magic (truenamer and utterances), Complete Champion (affiliations), Eberron Campaign Setting (Undead Empathy), and Races of Destiny (Illumian) were also used.

  12. - Top - End - #42
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Thurbane's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Terra Australis
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    OK, and there we are.

    Only two entries this time around. At least we hit the minimum to make it a competition.

    Sorry if the theme this round was a bit overly ambitious, or too restrictive. I was hoping from the initial interest, we would be getting a few more than that.

    On the plus side, shouldn't be too intimidating for judge(s)

  13. - Top - End - #43
    Orc in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jun 2019
    Location
    Bear mountains! (Alps)
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    Male

    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    I was tinkering with a cleric 5 /walker in the waste 10(hello free lich!)/lord of the dead 5 build, but it felt very uninspired, and then wrath of the righteous happened, so that was that.

    my inspiration is running low, sadly, videogame distraction aside

  14. - Top - End - #44
    Halfling in the Playground
     
    WhiteWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Apr 2018
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    Female

    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    I didn't expect only invocation users! I was tinkering with an ur-priest/spelldancer/wizard ghost stub that used the infinite free metamagic from spelldancer to buff yourself, your cohort, and an undead army to high heaven, with spellguard of silverymoon to share personal-range buffs and chain spell to persist touch range buffs. Spellguard of silverymoon's other ability, selective spell, lets you make Selective (non-undead) Forcecages and Control Winds, and then use Undead Weapon on your followers to really blow things up. The idea was to make even more undead fodder with freely metamagic'd command undead combined with Fell Animate for no-material-cost undead. Unfortunately, the build was a nightmare to make work (I hit 18 will with 3 BAB because of all the dips) and also lost of a lot of power because it couldn't spelldance necromancy, which I initially forgot about. It got 9th's, though.
    Spoiler: crunch
    Show

    Level Class Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Reflex Save Will Save Skills Feats Class Features
    1st Necromancy Specialist Enhanced Undead Combat Wizard 1 0 0 0 2 Perform (dance) (+4) 4; Tumble (+4 CC) 2; Concentration (+4) 4; Bluff (+4 CC) 2; Knowledge (Arcana) (+4) 4; Spellcraft (+2) 2; Sense Motive (+2 CC) 1; Diplomacy (+4 CC) 2; Intimidate (+4 CC) 2; Combat Casting, Spell Focus (evil), Endurance, Extend Spell—flaw, Apprentice(Entertainer)—flaw
    2nd Wizard 2 1 0 1 3 Perform (dance) 4; Tumble (+1 CC) 2.5; Concentration (+1) 5; Bluff (+1 CC) 2.5; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 5; Spellcraft 2; Knowledge (The Planes) (+1) 1; Sense Motive (+1 CC) 1.5; Diplomacy (+1 CC) 2.5; Intimidate (+1 CC) 2.5; Iron Will (Otuygh)
    3rd Wizard 3 1 1 1 3 Perform (dance) (+1) 5; Tumble (+1 CC) 3; Concentration 5; Bluff (+1 CC) 3; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 6; Spellcraft 2; Knowledge (The Planes) (+1) 2; Sense Motive (+1 CC) 2; Diplomacy (+1 CC) 3; Intimidate (+1 CC) 3; Mobility
    4th Wizard 4 2 1 1 4 Perform (dance) (+1) 6; Knowledge (Religion) (+1) 1; Tumble (+1 CC) 3.5; Concentration 5; Bluff (+1 CC) 3.5; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 7; Spellcraft 2; Knowledge (The Planes) 2; Sense Motive (+1 CC) 2.5; Diplomacy (+1 CC) 3.5; Intimidate (+1 CC) 3.5;
    5th Domain Granted Power Wizard 5 2 1 1 4 Perform (dance) 6; Knowledge (Religion) 1; Tumble (+1 CC) 4; Concentration 5; Bluff (+1 CC) 4; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 8; Spellcraft 2; Knowledge (The Planes) 2; Sense Motive (+3 CC) 4; Diplomacy (+1 CC) 4; Intimidate (+1 CC) 4; Dodge, Fell Animate (Metamagic Location) Domain Granted Power (Deathbound)
    6th Ghost 1 2 1 1 4 Perform (dance) 6; Knowledge (Religion) 1; Tumble 4; Concentration 5; Bluff 4; Knowledge (Arcana) 8; Spellcraft 2; Knowledge (The Planes) 2; Sense Motive 4; Diplomacy 4; Intimidate 4; Ethereal, fly, ghostly equipment, ghost skills +2, manifestation, undeath
    7th Spelldancer 1 2 1 3 6 Perform (dance) (+1) 7; Knowledge (Religion) 1; Tumble 4; Concentration (+2) 7; Bluff (+1 CC) 4.5; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 9; Spellcraft (+2) 4; Knowledge (The Planes) (+3) 5; Sense Motive 4; Diplomacy 4; Intimidate 4; Undead Leadership
    8th Lord of the Dead 1 2 1 3 8 Perform (dance) (+1) 8; Knowledge (Religion) (+3) 4; Tumble 4; Concentration 7; Bluff (+1 CC) 5; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 10; Spellcraft (+2) 6; Knowledge (The Planes) 5; Sense Motive 4; Diplomacy 4; Intimidate 4;
    9th Mindbender 1 3 3 3 10 Perform (dance) (+1) 9; Knowledge (Religion) (+4) 8; Tumble 4; Concentration (+1) 8; Bluff (+1 CC) 5.5; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 11; Spellcraft (+1) 7; Knowledge (The Planes) 5; Sense Motive 4; Diplomacy 4; Intimidate 4;
    10th Spellguard 1 3 3 3 12 Perform (dance) (+1) 10; Knowledge (Religion) (+4) 12; Tumble 4; Concentration (+1) 9; Bluff (+1 CC) 6; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 12; Spellcraft (+1) 8; Knowledge (The Planes) 5; Sense Motive 4; Diplomacy 4; Intimidate 4; Persist Spell
    11th Ur-Priest 1 3 3 3 14 Perform (dance) (+3) 13; Knowledge (Religion) (+1) 13; Tumble 4; Concentration (+1) 10; Bluff (+1) 7; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 13; Spellcraft (+1) 9; Knowledge (The Planes) 5; Spot (+1 CC) 0.5; Sense Motive 4; Diplomacy 4; Intimidate 4;
    12th Contemplative 1 3 3 3 16 Perform (dance) (+1) 14; Knowledge (Religion) 13; Tumble 4; Concentration (+1) 11; Bluff (+1 CC) 7.5; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 14; Spellcraft (+1) 10; Knowledge (The Planes) 5; Spot (+4 CC) 2.5; Sense Motive 4; Diplomacy 4; Intimidate 4; Air
    13th Mystic Theurge 1 3 3 3 18 Perform (dance) (+1) 15; Knowledge (Religion) 13; Tumble 4; Concentration (+1) 12; Bluff (+1 CC) 8; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 15; Spellcraft (+1) 11; Knowledge (The Planes) 5; Spot (+2 CC) 3.5; Sense Motive 4; Diplomacy 4; Intimidate 4; Ecstatic Fevor; Chain Spell
    14th Spellguard 2 4 3 3 19 Perform (dance) (+1) 16; Knowledge (Religion) 13; Tumble 4; Concentration (+1) 13; Bluff (+1 CC) 8.5; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 16; Spellcraft (+1) 12; Knowledge (The Planes) 5; Spot (+2) 5.5; Sense Motive 4; Diplomacy 4; Intimidate 4; Ecstatic Fevor; False Theurgy; Reach Spell
    15th Spellguard 3 4 4 4 19 Perform (dance) (+1) 17; Knowledge (Religion) 13; Tumble 4; Concentration (+1) 14; Bluff (+1 CC) 9; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 17; Spellcraft (+1) 13; Knowledge (The Planes) 5; Spot (+2) 7.5; Sense Motive 4; Diplomacy 4; Intimidate 4; Ecstatic Fevor; False Theurgy; Swift Concentration; Selective Spell
    16th Spellguard 4 5 4 4 20 Perform (dance) (+1) 18; Knowledge (Religion) 13; Tumble 4; Concentration (+1) 15; Bluff (+1 CC) 9.5; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 18; Spellcraft (+1) 14; Knowledge (The Planes) 5; Spot (+2 CC) 8.5; Sense Motive 4; Diplomacy 4; Intimidate 4; Ecstatic Fevor; False Theurgy; Swift Concentration; Distracting Taunt; Ability Focus
    17th Lord of the Dead 3 6 5 5 20 Perform (dance) (+1) 19; Knowledge (Religion) 13; Tumble 4; Concentration (+1) 16; Bluff (+1 CC) 10; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 19; Spellcraft (+1) 15; Knowledge (The Planes) 5; Spot (+3 CC) 10; Sense Motive 4; Diplomacy 4; Intimidate 4; Ecstatic Fevor; False Theurgy; Swift Concentration; Distracting Taunt; Clarity of Vision;
    18th Lord of the Dead 4 7 5 5 21 Perform (dance) (+1) 20; Knowledge (Religion) 13; Tumble 4; Concentration (+1) 17; Bluff (+1 CC) 10.5; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 20; Spellcraft (+1) 16; Knowledge (The Planes) 5; Spot (+5 CC) 12.5; Sense Motive 4; Diplomacy 4; Intimidate 4; Ecstatic Fevor; False Theurgy; Swift Concentration; Distracting Taunt; Clarity of Vision;
    19th Lord of the Dead 5 8 5 5 21 Perform (dance) (+1) 21; Knowledge (Religion) 13; Tumble 4; Concentration (+1) 18; Bluff (+1 CC) 11; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 21; Spellcraft (+1) 17; Knowledge (The Planes) 5; Spot (+5 CC) 15; Sense Motive 4; Diplomacy 4; Intimidate 4; Ecstatic Fevor; False Theurgy; Swift Concentration; Distracting Taunt; Clarity of Vision; Fell Energy
    20th Mystic Theurge 2 9 5 5 22 Perform (dance) (+1) 22; Knowledge (Religion) 13; Tumble 4; Concentration (+1) 19; Bluff (+1 CC) 11.5; Knowledge (Arcana) (+1) 22; Spellcraft (+1) 18; Knowledge (The Planes) 5; Spot (+5 CC) 17.5; Sense Motive 4; Diplomacy 4; Intimidate 4; Ecstatic Fevor; False Theurgy; Swift Concentration; Distracting Taunt; Clarity of Vision;

    Abilities Initial Race / Template Level 4 Level 8 Level 12 Level 16 Level 20
    Str 8 3(-5)
    Dex 8 7(-1)
    Con 8 3(-5)
    Int 18 20(+2) 21(+1) 22(+2) 23(+1) 24(+1)
    Wis 14 16(+2)
    Cha 16 20(+4)

    Some ideas:

    Incorperal Enhancement (Fell Energy, Persist)
    Illyukar's Mantle (Fell Energy, Persist)
    Antimagic Field (Selective Spell, Persist)
    Control Winds (Selective Spell, Persist) IF Spellguard of Silverymoon doesn't affect range: persistant wraithstrike, etc
    Reverse Gravity (Selective Spell) IF Spellguard of Silverymoon affects range: Chained Reach Death Throes
    Volcanic Eruption (Selective Spell)
    Undeniable Gravity (Selective Spell)
    Last edited by Helloqwerty; 2021-10-05 at 03:25 PM.
    Trying to get my name changed, sorry for the silly name in the meantime!

    My Cleric of Heironeous does have a holier-than-thou attitude, thank you very much.

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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    I was contmeplating doing a "Chair's entry" just to bulk out the field (obviously not eligible for a placing), but ran out of time and couldn't get inspired.

    Basics were a Gravetouched Ghoul Human Sorcerer 6/LotD 5/X 7. The X is where I ran into issues: most things I looked at were either very feat intensive, not full casting, and/or had incompatible alignment/fluff. I was looking at Frost Mage eventually, but req feats required a Con score, meaning once you became undead, you lose the use of the feats.

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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    My stub was Ghoul 1/Bard 5/ LorD 4/Warchanter 10, with the intent of using the +BAB capstone to make piles of undead usable. Maybe slip in some dragonfire inspiration too. Required a very selective reading of Libris Mortis monster classes wherein critters with multiple hit dice could multiclass freely and lost all their RHD, and then take something with 2+ RHD and no LA... so an anthropomorphic animal. It just felt too cheesy, and Warchanter is just not a great class, and I'm in 4 Dominions 5 games and yeah. That's the stub.

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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    It looks like you weren't the only person to pick up on some interesting wording in LM.
    Trying to get my name changed, sorry for the silly name in the meantime!

    My Cleric of Heironeous does have a holier-than-thou attitude, thank you very much.

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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    Quote Originally Posted by Thurbane View Post
    Only two entries this time around. At least we hit the minimum to make it a competition.

    On the plus side, shouldn't be too intimidating for judge(s)
    Only two entries, but how they are!
    And they aren't so not intimidating. I'll try do my best. )))


    Spoiler: Judging criteria
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    Originality. Starting from 3. Highly subjective category. Are your classes, feats, combos, and tricks obvious and expected? Did I see something similar before? Or were you able to surprise me?

    Power. Starting from 0. Pun-pun is 10. Before you built your build it was able to do nothing. With every level, every feat, ability and spell it was starting to do more. I'll be evaluating not only raw power, but utility, survivability, flexibility, and other parameters.

    Elegance. Starting from 5. Till you place the first brick in your build there were zero mistakes. Guaranteed. Each mistake which I can find will take away some part of this five.

    Use of the Secret Ingredient (latter UotSI). Starting from 0, for obvious reasons. How well you use SI? Do it something for your build or you took it just because you need? What would happen if it'll be removed?


    Please bear with me. It's my second judging time and English isn't my mother tongue. Plus, entries are some tricky.

    I had idea around Death Knight. 5 ex-pal, 5 blackguard, 5 LotD. Maybe 7 monk, 3 bg, 5 LotD with ascetic knight (yeah, I know, this doesn't work by RAW). But I didn't go further idea.

    Helloqwerty, please, spoil you stub. It's so long on my phone.
    Last edited by loky1109; 2021-10-05 at 06:38 AM.
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    NecromancerGuy

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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    I'm sorry, I intended to judge, but with these entries... I just can't. It's just too much rules-bending for my taste. A necromancer Apostle of Peace is not that bad (and just saying that hurts), but I'm not going into True Dragon Kobold controversy. For Senex Fabius, there's no in-depth problem, it's just that you'll have to atone when you do pretty much whatever. Creating undead is evil, but is using them in combat evil? Can you even be neutral if you don't do good deeds? And can you atone if you want to remain nongood and continue using undead? That doesn't seem very "truly repentant and desirous of setting right its misdeeds". In the end, a lenient DM may let you can play that, and you'll have to pay lots of money to the clerics (which is kind of good, since you already have to give them all your money).

    But for Kacdaninmyla... Either it works, or it doesn't. If it doesn't work, the whole build falls apart beyond recognition and can't really be salvaged. If it works, it absurdly broken and completely underutilized here. Sovereign archetypes are but the beginning. For example, since you're at least Young Adult, you can be a Xorvintaal dragon (MM5), gaining lots of goodies like +6 to all saves, immunity to divination, swift action almost-breath, an Intimidate-based mind-control and lots of immediate action defenses (it scales off of age categories, and you only lose your spellcasting and spell resistance, which you don't care about). And since you're at least Old, you can take Epic feats, like for example Undead Mastery. You're potentially very strong, but either way I'm not fair towards the other contestant, or towards the effort that went into this build.

    Anyway, Thurbane, I really don't think the theme was either too ambitious or too restrictive. I believe it was a good theme, and the number of stubs should convinve you of it. I probably would have participated too if it wasn't for Iron Chef judging. It's just that people were not inspired enough, it seems. For what it's worth, that's the kind of theme that I really like in JW: an original SI, and just put out the most obvious thing.

    Also, thank you loky for judging!
    Trying to resurrect the Negative LA thread, any comment and discussion are very welcome!


    Quote Originally Posted by H_H_F_F View Post
    3.5 allows you to optimize into godhood, yes, but far more importantly, it lets you optimize weak, weird, and niche options into relevance.

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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    Quote Originally Posted by Thurbane View Post
    Sorry if the theme this round was a bit overly ambitious, or too restrictive. I was hoping from the initial interest, we would be getting a few more than that.
    I honestly liked the challenge! It's just what I could cook felt bland. Coupled with some time crunches I had, I never got past my stubs.

    Quote Originally Posted by ciopo View Post
    I was tinkering with a cleric 5 /walker in the waste 10(hello free lich!)/lord of the dead 5 build, but it felt very uninspired, and then wrath of the righteous happened, so that was that.
    I had a similar stub for one of my rough ideas. My problem with WitW was that I really, really, really wanted to dump Con and pump Cha but then that hurts survivability until you hit at least ECL 11 (the absolute earliest you can qualify with no small amount of cheddar). Clerics with the right domains and Archivists can enter at ECL 4, but that still means you're starting LotD fairly late. The last two levels could then go to something else, but what exactly doesn't matter too terribly much. Ability Focus would apply to the Desiccating Touch. Since it's explicitly a touch attack to use, that means getting a little more mileage out of it compared to some other abilities with things like Divine Power. It's just that "Use Divine Power to do other things better" felt a little overdone, especially after my last two builds in the previous round.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thurbane View Post
    I was contmeplating doing a "Chair's entry" just to bulk out the field (obviously not eligible for a placing), but ran out of time and couldn't get inspired.

    Basics were a Gravetouched Ghoul Human Sorcerer 6/LotD 5/X 7. The X is where I ran into issues: most things I looked at were either very feat intensive, not full casting, and/or had incompatible alignment/fluff. I was looking at Frost Mage eventually, but req feats required a Con score, meaning once you became undead, you lose the use of the feats.
    I also eyed Gravetouched Ghoul and was debating throwing it onto a Primordial Half-Giant Warlock 6/LotD 5/Whatever Else 7. I also debated using GtG on the cohort as an alternative option and maybe use this Warlock build (minus LotD) as the cohort,

    My last idea was a super cheesy wizard, starting Wizard (Necro) 3/Master Specialist X/Lord of the Undead 5/Lich Savage Progression 1/Legacy Champion Y. Ability Focus would go towards the paralyzing touch. Of course, this build hinges entirely on whether or not you can both dip the lich savage progression and whether or not Legacy Champion can be used to extend it.
    Spoiler
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wings of Peace View Post
    "See these cookies? Note how while good they taste sort of bland. Now try these, they're the same cookies but with chocolate chips added. Notice how with the second batch we expended slightly more ingredients but dramatically enhanced the flavor? That's metamagic."
    Quote Originally Posted by Doc Roc View Post
    Seriously, can we kill this misconception now? A wizard is never late, nor is he early. He shops for precisely what he means to.


    Winner of Junkyard Wars 31.

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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    I think what happened was that a lot of chefs (myself included! see stub above) felt like they had things to go on, but they felt super bland, and didn't bother writing up their vanilla entries. That's why we got only ...wild entries. I think the ability focus feat contributed to this quite a bit; it's a pretty bland feat by default.
    Trying to get my name changed, sorry for the silly name in the meantime!

    My Cleric of Heironeous does have a holier-than-thou attitude, thank you very much.

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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    Quote Originally Posted by Helloqwerty View Post
    I think what happened was that a lot of chefs (myself included! see stub above) felt like they had things to go on, but they felt super bland, and didn't bother writing up their vanilla entries. That's why we got only ...wild entries. I think the ability focus feat contributed to this quite a bit; it's a pretty bland feat by default.
    Yeah, I struggled with that TBH. The first incarnation had the Rapid Metamagic feat as the second req, rather than Ability Focus - but I felt that was a bit too restrictive.

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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    Shining Blade of Heironeous let me go more or less.
    I'm starting.
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    DrowGuy

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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    Here we are!

    Spoiler: Kacdaninmyla (12)
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    Spoiler: Originality (3.25)
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    Venerable Dragonwrought Kobold is well known (-0.5).
    Dragonfire Adept isn't expected (+0.75).
    Ghostly Dragon isn't expected, too, but not so much (+0.5).
    Draconic Rite of Passage for Kobold is expected (-0.5).

    This is all I can say.



    Spoiler: Power (3.75)
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    You can do good damage with 3 elemental variants. And full powerhouse of ability damage. Plus, disables enemies with Entangling Exhalation, Chilling Fog, or Slow Breath (1.25). Very good mobility (+1). Your Invocations are useful. Skills good (+0.75). AC, hp, saves, and survivability in all. 22-26 AC + incorporeal - good for somebody who doesn't seek to melee fights, but not wow. HP about 110+15 temporary. For caster type characters - good. Saves are normal. Nothing very good, nothing very bad. And rejuvenation. You are technically immortal (+1.25).
    But LA anyway hurts hard (-0.5).



    Spoiler: Elegance (2)
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    First, DWK isn't True Dragon (-0.5). And I'll not want to debate about it.
    15 effective Dragonfire Adept level gives you only 7d6 breath weapon damage, not 8d8. There are irregular progression after 10th level (-0.25).
    Your gray mist breath weapon has a length 20 ft, this is standard cone length for small dragons (-0.25). Look at MM, p. 69.
    Plus, using a gray mist breath weapon prevents you from using your Dragonfire Adept's breath weapon (-0.25).
    Quote Originally Posted by MM, p. 69
    Using a breath weapon is a standard action. Once a dragon breathes, it can’t breathe again until 1d4 rounds later. If a dragon has more than one type of breath weapon, it still can breathe only once every 1d4 rounds.
    This isn't a big deal, but anyway bad synergy.

    Flaw (-1). I understand. You need Ability Focus. But you can skip Extra Exhalation. If you didn't kill somebody with -36 to All physical stats most likely he would check one of his saves and fourth breath will not help. And due to your ghostly nature you can wait and take fights in numbers that you want. And you can take Iron Will from Otyugh Hole. This isn't so inelegant as Flaw.

    I don't understand your stats. First, there are only 30 point buy. Second... Why Constitution 12 pb? Why Strength 10 pb? Why Charisma 15 (and 25 at the top ECL) pb? You were able to do it better (-0.25).
    Stats after death (at 3rd level, ECL 8):
    Strength 6*, Dexterity 18, Constitution —, Intelligence 16, Wisdom 16, Charisma 22
    From where did you take two more wisdom? (-0.5).

    Your sources. Technically you have them. Really - haven't. I searched for the Draconic Rite of Passage in three books. Yeah, there are only three books in which it can be, but I hit it. All others I found because I know or am good at Google Fu. But I might not. (-0.5)

    The Dragonblood subtype trick is a good catch (+0.5).


    Spoiler: UotSI (3)
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    You take all what you need (+1).
    +5 Turn Resistance is always good, but you aren't afraid turns very much. You are a ghost, you can hide in the wall and the turner wouldn't have Line of Effect (+0.5).
    Bolstering Aura... For Who? Your Undead Leadership cohort and followers? Or for undead created with 4th level animate dead SLA? You mentioned minions but didn't say how you take them (before 19 ECL). "Necropolitan Dread Necromancer with the full Corpsecrafter" cohort can help you, but he can help ghoul commoner-4, too. Yes, you have some ally oriented abilities, and it works, but it isn't enough (+0.25).
    Animate Dead... It has synergy, but this synergy is with the LotD class, not with your build. Unholy Aura is good, not great, but good (+0.25).

    The Ability Focus feat on the other hand is very good for you. It boosts your two main weapons. Nice (+1)!

    You take Ability Focus on the very first level, but LotD enter is very late (+0).

    If I take SI out... You lose something, but you can go in Dragonfire Adept 5 levels more and gain two Breath effects, one or two extra feats. I think it is somewhat similar (+0).


    Spoiler: Senex Fabius (11)
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    Spoiler: Originality (4.75)
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    Truenamer (+1).
    Vow of Poverty (+1).
    Apostle of Peace (+1).
    Contemplative (-0.5).
    Corpsecrafter, for this SI, is expected (-0.5).
    Undead + Old Age - expected (-0.25).


    Spoiler: Power (3.75)
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    First, you are a truenamer, it isn't a powerhouse, and your vows limit you very much. But at the end you can do very strong tricks. It comes very late, but it comes (+1). And you can avoid almost any battle (but about this a few lines following).
    Your mobility isn't good. You can fly theoretically, but this isn't the main option. But you don't need great mobility (+0.5).
    Your skills and out of battle options are very very good. 60 Diplomacy? What you need more? ))) (+1.25)
    Your survivability... 13d6+1d4+5d12=~83 hp. Low. AC as I can see only from VoP and VoP. Saves: Will - good, Fort - you are undead, Reflex - not good. Turn as 27HD. But on top of everything you have a Vow of Peace and Pacifying Touch. This is a big, big plus for your chances to live (), but it doesn't protect you against any attack from a big distance (+1).



    Spoiler: Elegance (0)
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    Okay. Your build is illegal.
    In other words, unlike the general rule for feats, Senex can retain the benefits of current exalted feats despite being non-good, as long as he performs no evil acts.
    This is ok. I'll tend to agree with you.

    Seperately, on page 29, BoED describes the benefits of voluntary poverty as "spiritual" rather than derived from gifts.
    I don't think this is a replacement for the gift nature of exalted feats. But this isn't a big problem. Maybe -0.5. Maximum -1.

    A character who ceases to be of good alignment or who willfully commits an evil act loses all special abilities and spells acquired in this prestige class, and may not gain new levels in that class. She may regain her abilities if she atones for her violations (see Sin and Atonement in Chapter 1).
    Luckily, there's still a way around this. The Sin and Atonement text is probably too long of a text for me to safely snippet, but it does not mandate that we actually change alignment, merely that we show remorse for our actions and repent. Notably, by the above rules text, this applies to both becoming a non-good alignment and committing an evil act, meaning we can atone for changing alignments without changing back.
    I don't think that Atonement changes your alignment, but also I don't think that you can atone for not being good. All looks like the Atonement part is only about evil acts and specific violations from specific feats. But this isn't fully illegal, either. More -1 or same.

    Now about really big sins.
    First.
    Vow of Poverty.

    At level 20, Senex can use The Dead Walk at level 10, allowing him to permanently animate 20 HD of undead per casting with a gem worth 500 GP. Senex is explicitly allowed to beg this from other members of his party, in this case, his cohort.
    No, Senex didn't. VoP implies refusal of using valuable goods. Doesn't matter how gladly your cohort gives you this gem. You can't beg about it.

    Plus.
    At level 20, Senex can use The Dead Walk at level 10, allowing him to permanently animate 20 HD of undead per casting with a gem worth 500 GP.
    Senex now has 5000 bat corpses, of which he should animate most as skeletons (for 1/4 HD)
    This doesn't work.
    You must place a black onyx gem worth at least 25 gp per Hit Die of the undead into the mouth or eye socket of each corpse you intend to animate.
    One corpse - one gem. If you want to animate 1400 bats, you need 1400 gems. Yes, the total value will be 500gp, but not in a single item. And you need far more than one round to animate 20 HD of 1/4HD bats. 6 seconds isn't enough to place pieces of gem into 80 mouths and touch 80 bat corpses.
    If you don’t discharge the spell in the round when you cast the spell, you can hold the discharge of the spell (hold the charge) indefinitely. You can continue to make touch attacks round after round. You can touch one friend as a standard action or up to six friends as a full-round action.
    Second.
    Vow of Peace.

    None of these prohibit Senex from agitate metal'ing a piece of metal immediately outside the circle into being hot enough to deal damage when touched, followed by ordering 4 undead bats from yesterday to pick it up. Senex's SLA deals damage to an undead creature, which is allowed. Then, the creatures explodes, killing every single one of the bats. Senex has not dealt any damage to living creatures, nor has he targetted them with any spells, damaging or nondamaging, and he hasn't even technically incapacitated any foes.
    Oh, yeah! You cheat RAW!!! But Vow is Vow. It has been given by Senex, and Senex doesn't think in terms of RAW, he thinks as a real person. And what does he see and expect? He gives his minions order that clearly and purposely results in deaths of living creatures.
    Of course this "trick" breaks the Vow! And together with Vow of Peace Senex loose Apostle of Peace, and Contemplative.

    More.
    Senex creates undead.
    Quote Originally Posted by BoVD, p. 8
    ANIMATING THE DEAD OR CREATING UNDEAD
    Unliving corpses—corrupt mockeries of life and purity—are inherently evil. Creating them is one of the most heinous crimes against the world that a character can commit. Even if they are commanded to do something good, undead invariably bring negative energy into the world, which makes it a darker and more evil place.
    Senex loose all exalted feats.

    Without two VoPs Senex isn't full character and I can't evaluate that's left of him.

    And there are some more debatable points, but I didn’t go into depth.


    Spoiler: UotSI (2.5)
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    You take all what you need (+1).
    Turn resistance is good for you (+0.75). Bolstering aura makes your thousands of undead bats almost unturnable, but they are almost unturnable themselves only by numbers. More of that, your Bolstering aura hampers turning for you, too. Without it you can use turn and do 32d6-72d6 negative energy damage via Destructive Retribution, but with it - only 2d6-4d6 damage. I see a difference (-0.5). Animate dead 1/day gives nothing for you. Literally. The Dead Walk plus Rebuild Item trick do the same, but better (+0). Unholy aura gives you 25 SR (from good creatures, who actually aren't your enemy) and +1 to saves for 2 minutes (you already have deflection AC and +3 resistance bonus on saves). Yes, it is good for your minions, but this isn't a big deal (+0.25).
    Ability Focus (vow of peace). Let’s look. It raises the DC of VoP from 24 to 26. Not bad (+0.5).

    You enter LotD in 10th level. Not very early for PrC which you can entry on the first (my mistake, forgot HD prec for Lidership), but not so bad. And you take Ability Focus immediately when take ability that focusing - 6th level (+0.25 +0.5).
    If I take SI from you… You can take five levels of warlock losing only Turn resistance, actually. Take nothing valuable, too, but this is a change from zero to zero. Or can take any better PrC (+0).


    Thanks participant for interesting entries! I had to do some researches. It always good!

    Open for disputes.
    Upd: some fix.
    Last edited by loky1109; 2021-10-12 at 01:59 PM.
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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    Thank you! I don't think this was an easy round to judge, despite not having a ton of entries.
    Trying to get my name changed, sorry for the silly name in the meantime!

    My Cleric of Heironeous does have a holier-than-thou attitude, thank you very much.

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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    First dispute:

    Quote Originally Posted by Senex Fabius
    Thanks for judging, loky!

    I obviously am not going to seriously quibble with the originality score, other than to note a -0.5 penalty for Contemplative seems quite harsh given the penalties given out in other places.

    Power-wise, my only complaint is that 1+1+1.25+0.5=3.75, not 3.25.

    Elegance is obviously the big category here, so let's go point by point. If the "creating undead is evil" is sufficient to tank my Elegance to 0 alone, then feel free to skip this entirely, because I flat-out missed that (why are rules about what breaks good vows in the big evil book -_-).


    A character who ceases to be of good alignment or who willfully commits an evil act loses all special abilities and spells acquired in this prestige class, and may not gain new levels in that class. She may regain her abilities if she atones for her violations (see Sin and Atonement in Chapter 1).
    Luckily, there's still a way around this. The Sin and Atonement text is probably too long of a text for me to safely snippet, but it does not mandate that we actually change alignment, merely that we show remorse for our actions and repent. Notably, by the above rules text, this applies to both becoming a non-good alignment and committing an evil act, meaning we can atone for changing alignments without changing back.
    I don't think that Atonement changes your alignment, but also I don't think that you can atone for not being good. All looks like the Atonement part is only about evil acts and specific violations from specific feats. But this isn't fully illegal, either. More -1 or same. I want to clarify here that my argument is that "ceasing to be of good alignment" is clearly a violation, and the (specific) AoP class explicitly says that I can atone for violations to get back class abilities, despite the (general) atonement rules not including that. However, based on what you've said, i recognize that that strict RAW might not be the issue here.

    Now about really big sins.
    First.
    Vow of Poverty.

    At level 20, Senex can use The Dead Walk at level 10, allowing him to permanently animate 20 HD of undead per casting with a gem worth 500 GP. Senex is explicitly allowed to beg this from other members of his party, in this case, his cohort.
    No, Senex didn't. VoP implies refusal of using valuable goods. Doesn't matter how gladly your cohort gives you this gem. You can't beg about it. Voluntary Poverty explicitly includes an exception to that general rule for spell components. Per BoED page 30,
    "A character who has forsaken material possessions may find himself at a marked disadvantage when it comes to certain necessary expenses, such as expensive material components. One option is for ascetic characters to beg components from other party members, who are probably gaining as much benefit from
    having the spell cast as the caster is."
    This seems to directly cover Senex's situation.

    Plus.
    At level 20, Senex can use The Dead Walk at level 10, allowing him to permanently animate 20 HD of undead per casting with a gem worth 500 GP.
    Senex now has 5000 bat corpses, of which he should animate most as skeletons (for 1/4 HD)
    This doesn't work.
    You must place a black onyx gem worth at least 25 gp per Hit Die of the undead into the mouth or eye socket of each corpse you intend to animate.
    One corpse - one gem. If you want to animate 1400 bats, you need 1400 gems. Yes, the total value will be 500gp, but not in a single item. And you need far more than one round to animate 20 HD of 1/4HD bats. 6 seconds isn't enough to place pieces of gem into 80 mouths and touch 80 bat corpses.
    If you don’t discharge the spell in the round when you cast the spell, you can hold the discharge of the spell (hold the charge) indefinitely. You can continue to make touch attacks round after round. You can touch one friend as a standard action or up to six friends as a full-round action.
    Two separate sets of objections here. In response to the issue with Senex only being able to create 1 gem, this actually is not an issue because of the precise phrasing of The Dead Walk. The Dead Walk raises "the bones or bodies" (plural) of dead "creatures" (plural) In order to have them not crumble into dust, "the normal material component for the spell (an onyx gem worth 25 gp per Hit Die of the undead)" must be included as part of the process. Notably, the only reference to the onyx is singular, despite the spell being explicitly in reference to plural creatures. You might object that it's impossible to place one gem in multiple eye sockets—I'm not sure that this is relevant, for three reasons. First, the invocation only specifies that the material component must be included in part of the process, not used in the same way. That could include say throwing it at the ground. Second, there's nothing keeping you from sticking it an eye socket, reanimating the creature, and pulling it out, with the gem only becoming fully burnt out once you've animated all the undead. IMO, this is the most internally consistent and logistically feasible reading—otherwise, your wizard has to subdivide his onyx ahead of time into the precise portions he anticipates to raise. Finally, lots of weird things happen with spell components—maybe the magic of the spell splits the gem for long enough to raise the undead, etc.

    On the second objection, about touching creatures, that set of rules doesn't apply. Indeed, immediately below in the SRD, we have
    Some touch spells allow you to touch multiple targets as part of the spell. You can’t hold the charge of such a spell; you must touch all targets of the spell in the same round that you finish casting the spell.
    Unless we're reading this to disqualify all touch range spells that touch more than 6 allies, this is irrelevant. Further, I'm not actually touching allies or creatures at all—I'm touching objects, and I'm 99% sure there's no rule about the maximum number of objects I can touch within a turn. 80 bat corpses can clearly all be in my reach at once.


    Second.
    Vow of Peace.

    None of these prohibit Senex from agitate metal'ing a piece of metal immediately outside the circle into being hot enough to deal damage when touched, followed by ordering 4 undead bats from yesterday to pick it up. Senex's SLA deals damage to an undead creature, which is allowed. Then, the creatures explodes, killing every single one of the bats. Senex has not dealt any damage to living creatures, nor has he targetted them with any spells, damaging or nondamaging, and he hasn't even technically incapacitated any foes.
    Oh, yeah! You cheat RAW!!! But Vow is Vow. It has been given by Senex, and Senex doesn't think in terms of RAW, he thinks as a real person. And what does he see and expect? He gives his minions order that clearly and purposely results in deaths of living creatures.
    Of course this "trick" breaks the Vow! And together with Vow of Peace Senex loose Apostle of Peace, and Contemplative. My general argument here is that clearly the authors of this book attempted to write it such that characters would fill both the spirit and letter of the law by being unambiguously exalted. Unfortunately, being exalted sucks, as has been AMPLY noted. Instead, Senex tries to meet both the letter and spirit of the law in two independent ways. Senex's specific actions meet the terms of his vow, meaning he doesn't automatically lose his vow. Further, because of Senex's mindset towards peace as a function of natural order, Senex views his actions as "Waging Peace," the relevant subheading in BoED. In other words, Senex thinks as a real person, meaning he thinks he's faithful to his vow of peace because of his actions, and independently, the supernatural beings binding his vow see him as peaceful because he is following the strict tenets of his vow. He also almost certainly doesn't lose AoP or Contemplative for this, as you don't lose the features of a prestige class for ceasing to meet prereqs.

    More.
    Senex creates undead.
    Quote Originally Posted by BoVD, p. 8
    ANIMATING THE DEAD OR CREATING UNDEAD
    Unliving corpses—corrupt mockeries of life and purity—are inherently evil. Creating them is one of the most heinous crimes against the world that a character can commit. Even if they are commanded to do something good, undead invariably bring negative energy into the world, which makes it a darker and more evil place.
    Senex loose all exalted feats. Yep, this is just correct. He can technically atone every morning, but you're right that this is a huge pain and somewhat questionable, and I screwed up.

    On UoSI, I was hoping to get some more flavor points, because I think Senex is basically the fantasy of a lord of the dead, but you're not wrong that I don't super-benefit mechanically. I forgot to detail this in the entry, but the bolstering aura actually helps your turn, because it concentrates all the deaths outside a 30 foot radius, meaning you don't accidentally blow up bats next to you for basically no effect. I think taking it at 10 isn't actually that late, because taking it earlier locks your level 6 feat to exactly undead leadership, but that's not a big deal. As you said, I used my 6 feat to grab the other contest ingredient. Good creatures are equally likely to be my enemy as evil creatures, so unholy aura is somewhat relevant. I'm not going to pretend that Lord of the Dead is key to my build tho

  27. - Top - End - #57
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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    Power-wise, my only complaint is that 1+1+1.25+0.5=3.75, not 3.25.
    Ouch. Mea culpa. Fixed.

    I want to clarify here that my argument is that "ceasing to be of good alignment" is clearly a violation, and the (specific) AoP class explicitly says that I can atone for violations to get back class abilities, despite the (general) atonement rules not including that. However, based on what you've said, i recognize that that strict RAW might not be the issue here.
    Ok. This can work. Cheesy, but can. Maybe -1 was too much. But this isn't zero.

    Voluntary Poverty explicitly includes an exception to that general rule for spell components. Per BoED page 30.
    This seems to directly cover Senex's situation.
    Yes, it looks like RAW on your side more or less, but VoW feats are fully is DM's management as I see. And I don't see how DM can allow you do this dozens times. This is some like that I wrote about Vow of Peace. One, two, maybe ten if we talk about long period of time, but your method is definitely against spirit of the vow. You in fact want to use about 8000-9000 gp every day. Yes, you trick for take this gp back, but... This is even worse. You, person that should not care about material goods, you care about excess waste of money.

    The Dead Walk raises "the bones or bodies" (plural) of dead "creatures" (plural) In order to have them not crumble into dust, "the normal material component for the spell (an onyx gem worth 25 gp per Hit Die of the undead)" must be included as part of the process.
    "An onyx gem worth 25 gp per Hit Die of the undead" is a short reference to original spell. Let's look:

    Material Component: You must place a black onyx gem worth at least 25 gp per Hit Die of the undead into the mouth or eye socket of each corpse you intend to animate. The magic of the spell turns these gems into worthless, burned-out shells.
    As I see all is pretty clearly.

    First, the invocation only specifies that the material component must be included in part of the process, not used in the same way.
    You can turn the bones or bodies of dead creatures into undead skeletons or zombies (as the animate dead spell).
    I can't find any guidance to do with material components some things differs of things you should do for spell.

    Second, there's nothing keeping you from sticking it an eye socket, reanimating the creature, and pulling it out, with the gem only becoming fully burnt out once you've animated all the undead.
    Even if I accept this... First, So big gem doesn't fit into bat's mouth. ))) Second - time. You have no time to do it before corpses disappear.

    Finally, lots of weird things happen with spell components—maybe the magic of the spell splits the gem for long enough to raise the undead, etc.
    I solve issues about D&D rules always having in mind one simple think. If something in rules doesn't mentioned explicitly - this is wrong. In the first place this norm applies to magics. Something that is in real world we can rule by common sense - magic can't.
    Rules doesn't say that commoner doesn't fire laser beams from his eyes. And rules doesn't say that gem splits and goes into mouths themselves. These are the same.

    Unless we're reading this to disqualify all touch range spells that touch more than 6 allies
    RAW, I reading this rule in this way, yes.

    Further, I'm not actually touching allies or creatures at all—I'm touching objects, and I'm 99% sure there's no rule about the maximum number of objects I can touch within a turn. 80 bat corpses can clearly all be in my reach at once.
    Yes, I can't find some pules about maximum amount of touching objects. But it definitely less than infinity. This anyway would cost for you some points.

    In other words, Senex thinks as a real person, meaning he thinks he's faithful to his vow of peace because of his actions.
    I can't agree with this. If you pointed out some self mindrape or mentally divergent that prevent Senex from understanding link between his orders and bats' deaths... Maybe. But I see person who clearly understand what he doing. And he can't not see that he is the single root of bats' deaths.

    He also almost certainly doesn't lose AoP or Contemplative for this, as you don't lose the features of a prestige class for ceasing to meet prereqs.
    I don't like this reading. This is debatable and some inelegance even if I am not clearly right.

    Yep, this is just correct. He can technically atone every morning, but you're right that this is a huge pain and somewhat questionable, and I screwed up.
    I don't think anybody can atone literally every morning. After several times (most likely after first) atonement will not be given. Gods aren't fools.

    Elegance still is zero.


    I forgot to detail this in the entry, but the bolstering aura actually helps your turn, because it concentrates all the deaths outside a 30 foot radius, meaning you don't accidentally blow up bats next to you for basically no effect.
    Alas, this is wrong.

    Quote Originally Posted by PHB, p. 159
    Range: You turn the closest turnable undead first...
    I think taking it at 10 isn't actually that late, because taking it earlier locks your level 6 feat to exactly undead leadership, but that's not a big deal.
    I agree, and I already added you +0.25 for this. You can see correction.

    Good creatures are equally likely to be my enemy as evil creatures, so unholy aura is somewhat relevant.
    You taked your +0.25 for unholy aura.

    UotSI doesn't change.
    Last edited by loky1109; 2021-10-12 at 03:30 PM.
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  28. - Top - End - #58
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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    Thanks for responding Loky.

    Have you updated your original post with modified scores?

    Also looking like there's no dispute from the second competitor?

    We might be able to move on to the next round fairly soon...

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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    Quote Originally Posted by Thurbane View Post
    Thanks for responding Loky.
    You're welcome!

    Quote Originally Posted by Thurbane View Post
    Have you updated your original post with modified scores?
    Yes. Only change was bad math Power.

    Also looking like there's no dispute from the second competitor?
    Or another judge?
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  30. - Top - End - #60
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    Default Re: Junkyard Wars XXXIII: LotD + AF - Necropolitan

    My time is pretty hectic right now: we've just bought our first home and are making preparations to move, and also this week at work instead of my normal role I'm helping train a new group.

    I'll try to have this comp wrapped up later today, and new comp shortly after that (unless any new judges or disputes appear).

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