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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ettin in the Playground

    Join Date
    Jun 2006

    Default Fizban's Tweaks and Brew (Feats, Spells, PrCs, Base Classes, Rules, Items, etc)

    As much as it annoys me when other people do it, I can certainly understand why, so a google drive link:

    Fizban's Tweaks and Brew (PDF)

    Latest Update: various minor edits.

    Unfortunately the hyperlinks for the table of contents don't seem to work in the google drive viewer, but Ctr+F still does, and they work in my pdf viewer (the bookmarks refuse to export, however, and if I added them to the pdf manually I'd have to re-do them every time).

    Quote Originally Posted by Introduction
    Well, now I know how all the people who've written their own " name" projects feel. At over 200 pages, I can't really say this isn't a book by now. With changes to almost every base class and many prestige classes, removals and changes to dozens of feats and spells, additions of new feats and spells meant to re-define expectations, pages of added clarifications on existing rules and re-writes of bad rules, this is indeed for all practical purposes as much of a new edition as 3.5 was to 3.0. If not more so. I'm not going to call it "3.fiz" though, or claim that it's a whole new game or something, that just seems pretentious (but I will use Fiz for marking spells).

    This is a book of changes that are specifically meant to be minor, to fix problems while keeping the spirit of the game as it was back in the earlier half of 3.x. It's not a new game- it's how to make the newer books fit with the old game. The one I found a home in, which drifted away over time at the hands of new writers and their books- and shall we say, the cultural shifts surrounding them.

    And there you have it. I could have started posting this years ago, and a number of people did request it, but general reluctance, dithering over whether I should "do it right" by converting the whole ever-growing document into forum-code (and thus have to maintain two different versions), and the rise and fall of my own enthusiasm had me refuse and put it off. But the wheel turns, and here I've finally decided to go ahead and share. As a never-finished document, don't be surprised at the occasional notes and to-dos left scattered around, parts awaiting restructure, or under construction, as dithering over whether and how much to clean up before posting is another old delay I've decided to brush past. Stuff that's finished is pretty well finished, but there's always something new 'till you give up the game.

    Quote Originally Posted by What's in this book?

    What Books and Why? A short discussion of what books I feel make up the heart of 3.x, the stuff that my tweaks and brew are supposed to harmonize with and stand alongside. And the books which start going off the rails more and more. And by short, I mean 8 pages, with nearly every book.

    Initial Bans and Changes progresses from simple one-word banlists to sentence long individual changes, clusters of sentences, and then even full paragraphs on major magic like polymorph or calling creatures or illusions, with a final series on misc spells. No banlist can ever be fully comprehensive, and I will not claim this is, because it is not- but it should be more than enough to get the point across.

    Other Clarifications and Changes is another 1 page section of collected changes that everyone should check- splitting them up would just make them harder to find.

    NPCs, Animals, and Monsters is a quick 2 pages of stuff that most people won't need to reference, but includes some general grappling notes and may affect your choice of familiar or animal companion.

    Character Creation is a 1-2 page list of character creation info just like it sounds, including the allowed ability score arrays, expected party roles, and a couple notes about feats. Followed by 2 pages of standard Medium/Small race options and commentary.

    Mundane Item Overview 2 pages higlighting major weapon and armor changes and realism rulings, 1 page on changes to magical convenience items, and some tables attempting to make it easier to tell at a glance what objects will survive area spells.

    Supplemental Rules includes several new rules for: overhauling ressurection spells, a block of changes if globally squishy mages are needed, changing spells known between levels, how material components work, standardizing spell durations, dueling, playing dead, and "mass" battles.

    Skills includes better defined Knowledge checks, clarifications on Spot and how long it takes to actually Search something, and and the new Social Skill rules.

    Feats begins with the list of feat tweaks which despite changes to many core feats is not very long (the line breaks make it look longer), and does not re-list the removed feats in Initial Bans (but it should have all the tweaks re-listed). The new feats are split into the main section, and the experimental section, with the latter simply being feats with more potential to end up needing nerfs or removal- due to damage multiplying, buffing summons, Factotum variants, caster feats, etc.
    Finally there is a section on SLA-granting bloodline feats, which is sort of half reference, half ready to be built out if and when inspiration strikes. If you read this section and think you have a cool idea for a bloodline you'd like to have, ask!

    Classes By Role is just what it says, a 1 page list of classes organized by their role to make picking classes easier, with a second page telling why X class isn't suitable or irks me. As such it also functions as a sort of allowed classes list, though most of those I dislike can still be allowed.

    Classes (Core) is a list of all* the core class general tweaks, all in just one (1) page. *Only Paladins have an extended section, for their newer Celestial Host and "no ACF" alternate class features.

    Classes (Extended) is the same thing for all the non-core classes, however-
    -The Shadowcaster and Binder need a little more room so they're on the next page, but are still just sets of a few quick one-line changes.

    While several classes have more extensive rewrites-
    • Hexblade, Sohei, Warmage, Duskblade and Healer were a major part of why I started this whole document. While each class fix is still a collection of effectively single-line changes well under a page, each also includes 1-3 page spell lists with major splatbook support.
    • Paladin has earned a big enough pair of new ACFs to get an extra page for itself.
    • Incarnum classes have their own section at the end which is only 2 pages- I was originally expecting to go over all the soulmelds to make a change list (warranting a couple pages of its own), but when looking again, everything seemed either too minor, or like I was thinking I should re-write all the soulmelds from scratch. So no meld changelist yet.
    • Soulknife is one of the newest additions, and the longest- conceptually it's still just a cluster of one line changes, but as new features with strange possible interactions, it's best to write them out fully. Still only a couple of pages of meat, with another page or so of notes and commentary.

    And most recently, I've added two New Base Classes under construction that I'd been stuck on for a while: the Devout, and the Free Mage. Both are spontaneous spellcasters, the former a Cleric by way of Spirit Shaman (able to change its daily spell list), and the latter a 1-7 casting "Bard" replacement with an exhaustive spell list. I don't really feel like they belong before or after the other classes, so they're just kinda jammed in for now.
    -Still works in progress, dunno how fancy I'll want to get filling out the text.

    Prestige Classes has those PrCs I have written tweaks for, followed by two Fire Emblem inspired entries (one mine, one not). I particularly like my changes to the Shapeshifter (which can serve as a Druid fix on its own), Blood Magus, Mystic Theurge, and Alienist, though Alienist may be a bit too clever for its own good.
    • Note that these are not "complete" lists, in the sense that I've made changes to every class I could or would change- I have a couple more Complete Arcane PrC changes to add before "finishing" that book, and I had multiple to address in the DMG and Complete Warrior, but ultimately there are too many prestige classes for me to ever want to deal with all of them, particularly when there are so many I just don't care for (I just happen to want to fix a lot of Tome and Blood/Complete Arcane). Keeping those I have done grouped together by book makes bookmarking easier.
    • The ruling remains that PrCs don't need a huge list because only a few are ever in use and they're easy to address individually as needed.

    Magic, including:
    • Traditional Energy Spells gives changes to a number of popular (and not so popular) energy spells, as well as some additions, and discusses the way the game links energy types to the designs of the spells that use them.
    • Expanded Permanency List is self-explanatory, and includes its reasoning.
    • New Summoning Lists is also self-explanatory, and includes a reminder of some changes.

    And Spells:
    • New Spell Notes is a place to put some commentary on various new spells (some more and some less important), to keep it out of the spell descriptions lest they become impossibly cluttered. Putting the notes first is meant to let a reader hear about some significant spells without needing to guess where to start from the class lists or read everything at once.
    • Spell Lists and Spell Descriptions still self-explanatory.

    The Invocations section begins with a list of tweaks and clarifications of published invocations, which like Feat Tweaks above looks a lot longer than it really is. It is followed by New Invocations, notes regarding those invocations, and then a compiled list of the published and new invocations. The Warlock is one of my favorite classes, a pillar of simplicity and potential for expression, and this is another area I'm quite proud of.
    • And then further, a list of Vael's very good invocations on GitP, and a list of tweaks to reconcile the differences. There are a few things I didn't bother writing because Vael already did. Vael specifically requests that no one re-print their work, so their invocations will need to be referenced outside of this doc.

    Soulmelds is a fairly small number (though still in full long format with flavor text) of soulmelds meant to support people who want to focus on. . . using soulmelds with their meldshaper, rather than trying to support a weapon or using natural weapons. As mentioned in the afternotes, they're all intentionally a little bit more powerful and the Totemist does clearly remain superior.

    Items begins with a list of some superior items made by applying certain spells or special materials, followed by major changes to Adamantine and the new Orihalcum material, before going on to a few magic weapons, restored and tweaked potions, new rings and wondrous items, and new wondrous architecture. There are a few items inspired by various video games, but overall not too many new items- it takes a very specific need or desire to get me to write an entirely new item.
    -The items section is one that is liable to have under construction bits lying around in perpetuity.

    The Appendix: Manaketes (LA +1 humanoid/dragon shapeshifters), Expanded Weapons, and Weapon Materials, a massively reworked Armor Table which I consider central, and Armor Materials, Lists of Alchemical and Superior Items, and Other Mundane Items, and Mounts and Gear (including prices for several un-priced mounts), Firearms (as presented in Sorcery and Steam), some More ACFs and Variants, new Domains, and Misc Personalized Tweaks.

    And finally, the Post-Preface. This includes the previous pretentious preface, then a long discussion of the true party roles, non-roles, and the roles of the DM. Followed by various essays and stubs on aspects of the game- most of which I've discussed on the GitP forum many times. Some are rehashed, not neccesarily in their best form, some still come off as fairly aggressive rants (having been written while annoyed), and many are simply one-line references- things I haven't re-hashed an entire essay for but still felt should be stated here somewhere.
    • This section isn't very pretty, and probably never will be. Actually "finishing" it would be the equivalent of, well, dragging up every major forum post I've ever written and then re-hashing them into dozens of self-contained blog-style essays. But I think it's important to leave in. This whole document, close enough to another .5 update, still can't be run without a DM. A lot of my stuff here is predicated on trying to understand what the writers were originally going for and sometimes whether or not they hit it, whether I choose to depart from it or not. My work is based on my understanding of the game (and of course, what I want the game to be), and anyone looking to use my work should be as informed as possible. So I've written an Intro, a How to Use, What Books and Why, and left in plenty of notes and essays to make that easier. But these bits that aren't directly notes on a thing also go at the end, where they're less likely to immediately offend and turn someone off from reading the standalone material, since plenty of stuff here is perfectly usable even if you run a game I would hate, and obviously if I'm putting this out there I want people to read it.
    • And if the answer isn't somewhere here in sufficient detail, hopefully there's enough of a hint you can dig up an old GitP thread to find the posts (use the "search for posts by name" feature) to read my explanation or argument there. Dig being the operative word, through walls and mountains of text at times.
    • It's also gathering scraps from when I trim stuff in other areas and don't want to delete them entirely.

    And even more finally, statblocks for some Advanced Monsters used in spells or PrCs. Because I should have put them before the post-preface but then I wouldn't have room to easily expand the bookmark list as I add more. This could expand into a minor bestiary if I start making extra standalone monsters, templates, and corrected statblocks.

    I'll be checking back sporadically of course, depending on forum interest/my interest. I've definitely got a couple more ideas lined up at the moment, but don't expect a landslide- one or two spells, feats, or PrC changes is hardly much compared to what's already there. Will definitely bump in the future if I add any new major lists like a full list of SpC changes, item bans and alterations, or similar.
    Fizban's Tweaks and Brew: Google Drive (PDF), Thread
    A collection of over 200 pages of individually small bans, tweaks, brews, and rule changes, usable piecemeal or nearly altogether, and even some convenient lists. Everything I've done that I'd call done enough to use in one place (plus a number of things I'm working on that aren't quite done, of course).
    Quote Originally Posted by Violet Octopus View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Fizban View Post
    sheer awesomeness

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Bugbear in the Playground

    Join Date
    Jun 2020

    Default Re: Fizban's Tweaks and Brew (Feats, Spells, PrCs, Base Classes, Rules, Items, etc)

    Free mage and devout are really interesting. Iím curious how free mage would play in a game. Itís similar to generic spellcaster which is generally considered to be a slightly better sorcerer, but it has better class features.
    Native Sha'ir enthusiast. NO GENIE WARLOCK DOESNT COUNT!

    Quote Originally Posted by Sparky McDibben View Post
    I am unburdened of my salt, and I rise like a bland-ass potato chip from the ashes of my discontent.
    Rate my homebrew:

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Ettin in the Playground

    Join Date
    Jun 2006

    Default Re: Fizban's Tweaks and Brew (Feats, Spells, PrCs, Base Classes, Rules, Items, etc)

    Well it will all depend on the spells chosen of course. I don't think it compares very much to the Generic Spellcaster: where the Generic Spellcaster can take any spell from the major lists and thus can do almost anything, the Free Mage (best name I've come up with) is defined by having its own list which has some conspicuous holes in it. It's so long that it looks like it has everything, but once you start building you should find yourself having to make do with B-rank spells, improvise, or simply do without certain things. You could ignore the class features entirely (which were added basically to justify the reduced spellcasting and are effectively interchangeable with PrC features), and take the essence of the class as simply my own take on a roguish dabbler spell list for people who want to work under some restrictions.

    This would of course be more evident with a shorter spell list, but as noted in the rambling construction zone, I went for the comprehensive long list with splats first, since it is supposed to be a buffet. Just a different buffet than usual.
    Fizban's Tweaks and Brew: Google Drive (PDF), Thread
    A collection of over 200 pages of individually small bans, tweaks, brews, and rule changes, usable piecemeal or nearly altogether, and even some convenient lists. Everything I've done that I'd call done enough to use in one place (plus a number of things I'm working on that aren't quite done, of course).
    Quote Originally Posted by Violet Octopus View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Fizban View Post
    sheer awesomeness

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