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  1. - Top - End - #811
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by lord_khaine View Post
    as for the last part, it looks like one of those things where it doesnt say you can, but not that you cant either, though for a start i can imagine you would have problems with the familiar part, since i doubt there are that many 17hd lions running around.
    Awesome, so now Druids can't wildshape into a 5'1" tall Ape if all they're familiar with is a 5' tall Ape.

  2. - Top - End - #812
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Awesome, so now Druids can't wildshape into a 5'1" tall Ape if all they're familiar with is a 5' tall Ape.
    since you are clearly not taking this serious, then i cant see any reason for why i should do so, so No, you cant change into a 5'1 ape, live with it.
    thnx to Starwoof for the fine avatar

  3. - Top - End - #813
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by lord_khaine View Post
    monks can flurry in a grapple because its confirmed that they indeed can do so, the same place explains that you cant use natural attacks for grapple attempts, so you would just get 3 unarmed strikes, with damage according to your size.
    By the by, could you please show the point in the SRD where the monk's flurry is specifically allowed to be used in a grapple? Link and quote, please. Because, by the reading of grapple, you may make extra attacks from high Base Attack Bonus, and nothing else. No Flurry, no haste, no two weapon fighting, no NOTHING, unless it is an extra attack granted by BASE attack bonus. As a monk's flurry isn't extra attacks from Base Attack Bonus, it is against that rule, unless the SRD contains specific unequivocal text allowing it. Please provide that text, and remember that primary source trumps. Thus, SRD trumps FAQ. That does unfortunately disallow FAQ from being used to contradict the SRD.
    Quote Originally Posted by lord_khaine View Post
    no, that puts you on either 3 unarmed grapple attempts from bab, and 2 rake strikes, or you can just make it all strikes, in that case you can use 1 natural weapon, and the additional rakes.
    Even so, it's 5 attacks. 3 Unarmed strikes from a gargantuan or colossal creature, followed by 2 rakes. 3 of those 5 attacks are at your highest base attack bonus. I'd say with a massive bonus and that fact, the druid stacks up rather favorably.
    Quote Originally Posted by lord_khaine View Post
    i would really like to see where i have used any prestice class, or taken anything outside core in this discussion, i think you are confusing me with someone else.
    Apologies. I had you confused with Worira. However, the point is still valid. Unless you're going to critique the monk use of PrC's, don't do it for the druid.
    Quote Originally Posted by lord_khaine View Post
    as for the last part, it looks like one of those things where it doesnt say you can, but not that you cant either, though for a start i can imagine you would have problems with the familiar part, since i doubt there are that many 17hd lions running around.
    Wrong. It says you CAN shift into any nonunique animal. Is an advanced animal a nonunique animal? Yes. By that, is it allowed? Yes. It doesn't say you can or can't make a dagger sized for an ogre with items that create weapons. Does that mean it's ambiguous? No. It outlines what you can do, and as long as you stay within those guidelines, you CAN do it. The MM and SRD provide for advancing any animal. Doing so is RAW. It's core, even. It's not in the realm of custom magic items, where there aren't defined rules. It's defined. It's a part of the game. If you don't like that, I'm sorry, but it doesn't mean you can ignore it. It's there.

  4. - Top - End - #814
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by lord_khaine View Post
    since you are clearly not taking this serious, then i cant see any reason for why i should do so, so No, you cant change into a 5'1 ape, live with it.
    I am taking this seriously. I'm familiar with 5' tall Apes. Whats preventing me from becoming one thats 5'1" tall?

    I'm familiar with v6 motors. Whats preventing me from getting the parts and building a v8 motor?

    I'm familiar with Large Dire Lions. Whats preventing me from become a Huge Dire Lion?

    I'm familiar with making Greatswords. Whats preventing me from making a Greatsword designed for a Large person?

    As long as you know the latter exist, and are familiar with the former, I dont see why anyone would restrict it.
    Last edited by Griffin131; 2008-05-29 at 07:07 AM.

  5. - Top - End - #815
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by Talic View Post
    Please provide that text, and remember that primary source trumps. Thus, SRD trumps FAQ. That does unfortunately disallow FAQ from being used to contradict the SRD.
    Not that it matters -- the FAQ doesn't allow it either.

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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by lord_khaine View Post
    since you are clearly not taking this serious, then i cant see any reason for why i should do so, so No, you cant change into a 5'1 ape, live with it.
    The bottom line is this. In order to turn into something, you must be familiar with it. The level of familiarity required is quite feasibly up to the DM, however, there is one solid guideline.

    Knowledge (appropriate) DC 10+HD of creature.

    Now, a 17hd Dire lion would be a DC 27 Knowledge (Nature).

    A 20th level druid should have 23 ranks in that skill, and gets a +2 circumstance bonus on Knowledge (Nature) checks from class abilities.

    Based on that, with an intelligence of 10, and 5 ranks of survival, that druid would have a familiarity by the knowledge rules with a 17hd dire lion, on a roll of 1.

    23 (ranks) + 2 (class) +2 (synergy) = +27. Rolling a 1 would pass a DC 27 check. Heck, with an average roll of 10, you will know additional useful information about the creature three times, instead of 1.

    Funny how druids might have a greater familiarity with nature than other classes.
    Last edited by Talic; 2008-05-29 at 07:19 AM.

  7. - Top - End - #817

    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    It's just too bad that the knowledge skill in no place says that it grants you familiarity with the chosen animal.

    In many cases, you can use this skill to identify monsters and their special powers or vulnerabilities. In general, the DC of such a check equals 10 + the monster’s HD. A successful check allows you to remember a bit of useful information about that monster.

    For every 5 points by which your check result exceeds the DC, you recall another piece of useful information.


    Piece. Bit. Not encyclopedic knowledge like the exact stats, natural armor, size, exact ability scores and all the other relevant abilities.

  8. - Top - End - #818
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by Oslecamo View Post
    Piece. Bit. Not encyclopedic knowledge like the exact stats, natural armor, size, exact ability scores and all the other relevant abilities.
    And where is familiarity defined as encyclopedic knowledge?

  9. - Top - End - #819
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by Oslecamo View Post
    It's just too bad that the knowledge skill in no place says that it grants you familiarity with the chosen animal.

    In many cases, you can use this skill to identify monsters and their special powers or vulnerabilities. In general, the DC of such a check equals 10 + the monster’s HD. A successful check allows you to remember a bit of useful information about that monster.

    For every 5 points by which your check result exceeds the DC, you recall another piece of useful information.


    Piece. Bit. Not encyclopedic knowledge like the exact stats, natural armor, size, exact ability scores and all the other relevant abilities.
    Odd, considering that taking one as an animal companion, and adventuring with it for 32 years, will not give you that information, either. So, by that, would a level 37 druid who had a dire tiger since level 16 not then be familiar with dire tigers, because he doesn't know what its bonus to natural armor is?

    Familiarity is usually a function of what your character's done, and where it's been. Creating characters above level 1 leaves gaps in that experience. The single best way to figure out what he's learned, what he knows, is knowledge. Yes, there's no substitute for playing the levels, but, even so, it's not a stretch to say that a level 20 character focused on nature is familiar with nature-based creatures that are CR 12-14. Not even close.

  10. - Top - End - #820
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Yeah, Talic, you just showed that druids are better grapplers than monk. I know. I wasn't trying to make a build that could beat a druid in a grapple, I was trying to make a build that could contribute in most parties without overshadowing them, and was fun to play.

    Incidentally, my build wasn't a grappling build. It was a pounce build, with the last 4 levels going to something that gives pounce, like Lion Totem Barbarian or Warblade with Pouncing Charge.
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  11. - Top - End - #821

    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by Talic View Post
    Odd, considering that taking one as an animal companion, and adventuring with it for 32 years, will not give you that information, either. So, by that, would a level 37 druid who had a dire tiger since level 16 not then be familiar with dire tigers, because he doesn't know what its bonus to natural armor is?
    My point was that why did you pick the dire tiger as an animal companion in the first place? As a player, you know the dire tiger is one of the best animals out there, with improved grapple, pounce, lots of natural attacks, rake, good nat armor, excelent ability scores, etc, etc.

    So, as soon as you managed, you kicked your old animal companion out of the window and summoned the stronger dire tiger, because, well, it's just stronger than everything else you could summon as an animal companion.

    But how did your character know that dire tigers were so imba? Have you been fighting dire tiger cults by any chance? Why not try a dinossaur? Dinossaurs also look cool. Or a dire bear. Or some other dire animal. There are plenty of them, and they all look as strong as the dire tiger at first glance(from a character perspective)

    But alas, you'll never summon those animal companions, because you(player) know that they are weaker. They have fewer attacks or less powers or worst ability scores or worst nat armor.

    You searched trough the MM and cherrypicked the best animal companion. Your druid never stoped to think if another animal would be a best choice. Sure, if you kept it around for 21 levels, you're familiar with it, but the only reason you've kept the dire tiger for 21 levels it's because you already knew it's stats beforehand whitout need for knowledge checks or anything.

  12. - Top - End - #822
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    It's the same question of why suddenly every barbarian out there hails from the Lion-Totem tribe and maybe a bit from the Bear Tribe. Did everyone else die out or something?

    But, the druid at least could rp doing research on animals. that's not a huge stretch.

  13. - Top - End - #823
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    *stares openmouthed at this spectacular thread from the cheap seats, and cheers everyone on*
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  14. - Top - End - #824
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Hmm... Of or pertaining to Grapple, Flurry of Blows, Two Weapon Fighting, & Base Attack Bonus...

    An interesting thing happened while reading the SRD about these subjects. The Two Weapon Fighting feat makes no mention of base attack bonus, and even the Two Weapon Fighting special actions refer to attack penalties during an attack action. Grapple does state that you can take a number of actions (listed under Grapple) equal to the number of attacks determined by base attack bonus. The interesting thing is that Flurry of Blows mentions Base Attack Bonus several times. It actually refers to the Flurry of Blows Attack Bonus colum as a modified base attack bonus. Dunno what anyone wants to do with this info, just kinda tossing some ideas around and all...
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  15. - Top - End - #825
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by Talic View Post
    By the by, could you please show the point in the SRD where the monk's flurry is specifically allowed to be used in a grapple? Link and quote, please. Because, by the reading of grapple, you may make extra attacks from high Base Attack Bonus, and nothing else. No Flurry, no haste, no two weapon fighting, no NOTHING, unless it is an extra attack granted by BASE attack bonus. As a monk's flurry isn't extra attacks from Base Attack Bonus, it is against that rule, unless the SRD contains specific unequivocal text allowing it. Please provide that text, and remember that primary source trumps. Thus, SRD trumps FAQ. That does unfortunately disallow FAQ from being used to contradict the SRD.
    http://www.d20srd.org/srd/combat/specialAttacks.htm
    Quote Originally Posted by SRD
    Starting a Grapple

    To start a grapple, you need to grab and hold your target. Starting a grapple requires a successful melee attack roll. If you get multiple attacks, you can attempt to start a grapple multiple times (at successively lower base attack bonuses).
    It JUST says multiple attacks. It does mention successively lower base attack bonuses, but that just means you get a lower attack when you use your normal iteractive attacks. It doesn't say you can't use extra attacks from others sources (haste, flurry, TWF, ...). It doesn't specifically says you can, but doesn't say you can't either.

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  16. - Top - End - #826
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by Roderick_BR View Post
    http://www.d20srd.org/srd/combat/specialAttacks.htm

    It JUST says multiple attacks. It does mention successively lower base attack bonuses, but that just means you get a lower attack when you use your normal iteractive attacks. It doesn't say you can't use extra attacks from others sources (haste, flurry, TWF, ...). It doesn't specifically says you can, but doesn't say you can't either.
    Hi, thats starting a grapple. That has literally zero to do with once you're *in* a grapple, what happens.

  17. - Top - End - #827
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    So is there any Monk order in the Forgotten Realms or Greyhawk or anywhere at all that stresses the importance of learning to use wacky magic items like smoke bottles, scrolls, potions and wands rather than meditating, living orderly, ascetic lives and training your body to perfection?
    Last edited by Freelance Henchman; 2008-05-29 at 03:17 PM.
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  18. - Top - End - #828
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by Worira View Post
    Yeah, Talic, you just showed that druids are better grapplers than monk. I know. I wasn't trying to make a build that could beat a druid in a grapple, I was trying to make a build that could contribute in most parties without overshadowing them, and was fun to play.

    Incidentally, my build wasn't a grappling build. It was a pounce build, with the last 4 levels going to something that gives pounce, like Lion Totem Barbarian or Warblade with Pouncing Charge.
    Wrong. I showed that the druid, at level 20, which is FAR higher than the monk you designed, is only on par with most CR 20 monsters. The monk, since, by your own admission, is worse than something that is on par, is below par. It will not be contributing effectively. This isn't me bashing anything. It's me saying that someone that can make 72 grapple checks at +30 is not going to beat the one creature that makes 3 checks at +50. Why? Because he'll never successfully establish a grapple.

    Quote Originally Posted by Oslecamo View Post
    My point was that why did you pick the dire tiger as an animal companion in the first place? As a player, you know the dire tiger is one of the best animals out there, with improved grapple, pounce, lots of natural attacks, rake, good nat armor, excelent ability scores, etc, etc.
    That might be why YOU pick your animals. Not why I pick mine. For example, I've never chosen the Fleshraker. I typically go with wolf. When the wolf dies, I like upgrading to lions, tigers, or bears (oh, my). Why? Because they're cool. If I have to replace, and I have the option to get one, only bigger? Darn skippy.
    Quote Originally Posted by Oslecamo View Post
    So, as soon as you managed, you kicked your old animal companion out of the window and summoned the stronger dire tiger, because, well, it's just stronger than everything else you could summon as an animal companion.
    Again, not everyone makes their decision based on that. If that were true, I imagine there are better ways to do it. But the tiger is just COOL.
    Quote Originally Posted by Oslecamo View Post
    But how did your character know that dire tigers were so imba? Have you been fighting dire tiger cults by any chance? Why not try a dinossaur? Dinossaurs also look cool. Or a dire bear. Or some other dire animal. There are plenty of them, and they all look as strong as the dire tiger at first glance(from a character perspective)
    Hardly. I don't choose dinosaurs because I don't think they mesh well in the game. I don't like them. No T-rex for Talic's Druids. As for Dire Bears? I have chosen them. I've also chosen numerous other dire animals. So, before you assume that that's how I roll, find out. Kthxbai.
    Quote Originally Posted by Oslecamo View Post
    But alas, you'll never summon those animal companions, because you(player) know that they are weaker. They have fewer attacks or less powers or worst ability scores or worst nat armor.
    Actually, I do, and I have. Again, showing your ignorance of my personal play style. While there's nothing wrong with being ignorant of something you have no knowledge of, there is most certainly something a bit silly about talking like you do know, when the leading authority on my play style (hint: That's me) is disagreeing with you.
    Quote Originally Posted by Oslecamo View Post
    You searched trough the MM and cherrypicked the best animal companion. Your druid never stoped to think if another animal would be a best choice. Sure, if you kept it around for 21 levels, you're familiar with it, but the only reason you've kept the dire tiger for 21 levels it's because you already knew it's stats beforehand whitout need for knowledge checks or anything.
    Really? Imagine that. Players may make decisions about their characters based on player preferences. My, next time, I'll have the DM make 5 random character sheets, seal them in envelopes, and pass them out, because how dare those players get to choose thair class abilities and feats based on what they enjoy playing. How dare they!?!?!????!?one11!

    Point of that is, if players enjoy an optimized player, who are you to tell them they're wrong for playing that way? If a heavy duty roleplayer has a druid that has venerated the tiger spirits of his land for his entire adventuring life, and is blessed with a dire tiger for a companion, who are you to tell him he's a horrible optimizer? And why is it bad? Different strokes for different folks.

    Bottom line. There is no clear cut definition of "familiar" by D&D standards. It's up to players and DM's to decide. However, if you go uber-restrictive, and tell your players that if they pick anything other than wolf or dire weasel, that they're horrible optimizers, and they can't be familiar with that creature, or carte blanche tell the druid that he can't turn into half the woodsy creatures, you know what you're doing?

    You're curtailing a players options without a RAW basis for doing so. You're denying a player's wishes without a RAW reason. IMO, that's not a good if to take, without a really, REALLY good reason.

  19. - Top - End - #829
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by Freelance_Henchman View Post
    So is there any Monk order in the Forgotten Realms or Greyhawk or anywhere at all that stresses the importance of learning to use wacky magic items like smoke bottles, scrolls, potions and wands rather than meditating, living orderly, ascetic lives and training your body to perfection?
    Why yes. They're called the Red Wizards of Thay...
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  20. - Top - End - #830
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by Roderick_BR View Post
    http://www.d20srd.org/srd/combat/specialAttacks.htm

    It JUST says multiple attacks. It does mention successively lower base attack bonuses, but that just means you get a lower attack when you use your normal iteractive attacks. It doesn't say you can't use extra attacks from others sources (haste, flurry, TWF, ...). It doesn't specifically says you can, but doesn't say you can't either.
    Go a bit further down, PAST starting a grapple, and you see the following:
    Quote Originally Posted by SRD, Grappling
    If You’re Grappling

    When you are grappling (regardless of who started the grapple), you can perform any of the following actions. Some of these actions take the place of an attack (rather than being a standard action or a move action). If your base attack bonus allows you multiple attacks, you can attempt one of these actions in place of each of your attacks, but at successively lower base attack bonuses.
    There's where it specifically allows you multiple special grapple actions based on the number of attacks you get. However, this only applies to grapple checks that take the place of an attack. Makes sense that attempts to move the grapple wouldn't, though damaging, attacking in grapple, pinning, escaping pin, escaping grapple? Those probably would. Casting a spell? Most certainly not. Thus, you may only get multiple attacks from BAB. That is specifically allowed. The rest? Not so much, guy.

  21. - Top - End - #831
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by Kurald Galain View Post
    Why yes. They're called the Red Wizards of Thay...
    The Red Monks of Thay you mean, surely!
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    There's the Dark Moon monks, they multi into Sorc and use the Shadow Weave for the most part. Azuth probably has a matching sect, I know he's got one for Paladins.
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by mostlyharmful View Post
    There's the Dark Moon monks, they multi into Sorc and use the Shadow Weave for the most part. Azuth probably has a matching sect, I know he's got one for Paladins.
    Ah. That sounds interesting, presumably these guys would need and benefit from high CHA for UMDing anyway? But then, the best builds for them would likely use as few monk levels as possible...
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    By the by, could you please show the point in the SRD where the monk's flurry is specifically allowed to be used in a grapple? Link and quote, please. Because, by the reading of grapple, you may make extra attacks from high Base Attack Bonus, and nothing else. No Flurry, no haste, no two weapon fighting, no NOTHING, unless it is an extra attack granted by BASE attack bonus. As a monk's flurry isn't extra attacks from Base Attack Bonus, it is against that rule, unless the SRD contains specific unequivocal text allowing it. Please provide that text, and remember that primary source trumps. Thus, SRD trumps FAQ. That does unfortunately disallow FAQ from being used to contradict the SRD.
    flurry of blows says you get additional attacks, the text here
    If You’re Grappling
    When you are grappling (regardless of who started the grapple), you can perform any of the following actions. Some of these actions take the place of an attack (rather than being a standard action or a move action). If your base attack bonus allows you multiple attacks, you can attempt one of these actions in place of each of your attacks, but at successively lower base attack bonuses.
    says that some of these actions can be taken in place of a attack, and the FAQ confirms that the understanding that the additional attacks from FoB can be used for these actions.

    Even so, it's 5 attacks. 3 Unarmed strikes from a gargantuan or colossal creature, followed by 2 rakes. 3 of those 5 attacks are at your highest base attack bonus. I'd say with a massive bonus and that fact, the druid stacks up rather favorably.
    yeah, but its only one of them that can the used for grapple checks, the other 2 are just normal claw attacks.

    Apologies. I had you confused with Worira. However, the point is still valid. Unless you're going to critique the monk use of PrC's, don't do it for the druid
    well i usualy find it overkill to put a prestice class on a druid.

    Not that it matters -- the FAQ doesn't allow it either
    actualy the FAQ allows it.

    as for the scaling up of both items and dire lions.
    yes with small items like daggers and swords you can scale them up to a certain degree, but soner or later you will find a limit for the strength of whatever material you are using, take fx the building of a 3 m long bridge, thats pretty simple.
    now lets build one thats 300 meter long, can you just the previous bridge up?
    no you have to start with a totaly new design.

    its something of the same with the druid, if he wants to turn into a big feline predator, but the only animal he has seen is a cat, then he cant just scale it up so size large, he has to go out and study a lion or whatever relatet animal he can find.
    as far as i can see its the same with huge lions, you cant simply scale a normal lion up, you have to get familiar with a real huge lion first.
    thnx to Starwoof for the fine avatar

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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by Freelance_Henchman View Post
    Ah. That sounds interesting, presumably these guys would need and benefit from high CHA for UMDing anyway? But then, the best builds for them would likely use as few monk levels as possible...
    Not really. An item of +Cha to take them into the positives is all they really need. That'll get them basic casting and wand use, without the huge drain on skill points they may even be able to make a half hearted attempt at back-up skillmonkey. They just need to make sure to focus on self buffs and no-save stuff

    And yes. The best build still involves as little monk as possible. Ideally full caster with a monks belt.
    Last edited by mostlyharmful; 2008-05-29 at 04:36 PM.
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  26. - Top - End - #836
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    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Hi,

    jumping in from a busy week to help valiant lord_khaine's fight to combat the continued misperceptions of the monk.

    Two points to be made
    1) Posting the level 20 monk build indeed was to show that in core as a straight 1-20 build, the monk can be a viable, highly useful class. Of course it can be easily used to multiclass and take prestige class, but this then takes away from either its combat ability, or its magebane aspect, or his stealth. So basically it means: a different build. See the updated guide above, though, making already use of some of your ideas for multiclass builds.

    2) Grapple can be flurried. Get over it. The FAQ on p. 20 quoted already several times says it all (the question says grapple CHECK, not grapple attack, and it is answered positively explicitly "She's free to...grapple to her heart's content."). It's one of the monk advantages for grappling, alongside
    - best damage stacking for unarmed grapple damage and
    - the possiblity of getting improved grapple as a bonus feat (thus without the DEX requirement, meaning less MAD for REALLY STR-focused monk builds).

    Now, to comment directly...

    Quote Originally Posted by Kurald Galain View Post
    Since the game is UMD, the gonk is beaten at this game by (1) anything that has a higher BAB, (2) anything that has UMD as a class skill, or (3) any decent spellcaster. This just happens to include every single other class in the player's handbook, and several of the NPC classes as well.

    But hey, some class had to be the worst...
    Once more: UMD is PART of the build, but it is by far not the major aspect. The major aspect is that the Joker monk uses spells from the following sources to achieve synergies with his many class abilities...
    1) items (with UMD)
    2) items (without UMD)
    3) npc buffs
    4) pc buffs
    See how your alleged "since UMD is the game" is reduced to 25% of THIS particular tactics of the Joker monk?
    Then he uses spells that synergise very well or best with the monk. Good examples are
    1) Enlarge (grapple, unarmed damage stacking)
    2) Fly (getting the highest non-morph, non-phantomsteed move in the core game)
    3) Divine Power (BAB difference does not matter anymore at high levels, please start to accept this; it's starting to get ridiculous)
    4) Silence (home in with high move and tumble to thwart spellcasting)
    5) AMF (ditto)
    6) Mage Armour
    etc.

    Then...

    Quote Originally Posted by Talic View Post
    Final grapple?

    Lion without animal growth?

    +15 (BAB) +13 (Str - 25 Base+8 advancement+4 Warshaper) + 8 (size) + 4 (feat) + 4 (coils) = +44 grapple, 3 attacks (5 in grapple, or on charge)

    With growth?

    +15 (BAB) +17 (Str - 25 Base+8 size +8 advancement+4 Warshaper +) + 12 (size) + 4 (feat) + 4 (coils) = +52 grapple, 3 attacks (5 in grapple, or on charge)

    Note, this is using core only spells, and core only shifting.
    Well, let us see.

    The joker monk at level 20, if morphing is in, can do the following.
    Either he polymorph any object into a fairly impressive outsider of up to 15 HD (the only one able to do that in core without LA races).
    Or, to maximise grappling, he'll simply use a scroll of animal shapes and turn into a roc. With divine power, at level 20 and 4 inherent bonuses to STR, the following ensues.
    +20 (BAB) +17 (STR 44- 34 roc, +6 enhance, +4 inherent) +12 (size) +4 (feat) = +53 grapple (not making use of non-core coils and warshaper). Note that he gets 6 grapple checks per round, of which 3 are at the highest (another nice monk feature often ignored around here.

    But it is the damage that outclasses the druid in the contest for best grappler.
    It is actually 18d6 (2d10 base, increase by INA and 4 size increases) +17, or 80 damage per grapple check. With six checks, that is 480 damage.

    Quote Originally Posted by Talic View Post
    Now, +44-52 grapple, versus the CR 20 critters out there:
    Spoiler
    Show
    {table=header]Creature | Grapple | Druid advantage
    Balor | +35 | (+9) - (+17)
    Black Dragon (Wyrm) | +58 | (-14) - (-6)
    Brass Dragon (Ancient) | +50 | (-6) - (+2)
    Bronze Dragon (Very Old) | +49 | (-5) - (+3)
    Copper Dragon (Very Old) | +47 | (-3) - (+5)
    Pit Fiend | +35 | (+9) - (+17)
    Red Dragon (Old) | +52 | (-8) - (0)
    Silver Dragon (Old) | +46 | (-2) - (+6)
    Tarrasque | +81 | (-37) - (-29)[/table]

    This shows that, while anything whose name ends in "-ragon" can compete with the druid, none can do it while not counting as grappled reliably. Thus, in order to beat the druid in grapple, every monster up there except for the Tarrasque must deny dex to everything else, opening up sneak attacks and the like.
    Spoiler
    Show


    Ditto for the monk - who'll down the monster faster.

    Quote Originally Posted by Talic View Post
    If you change it to Druid 17/Warshaper 2/Nature's warrior 1, it gets worse, as Shapechange opens up new options for even larger creatures. Also, choosing creatures with higher strength will result in checks that can reliably beat dragons, and deal with pit fiends as if not grappled. I doubt that it'll get you to tarrasque levels, but that's the idea. Also, shapechange is quite easy to get off quick with a greater rod of quicken, which is awesome for a 20th level fullcaster.
    Well, shapechange does have the already mentioned drawback of needing "familiarity" to use the form. Plus, it's not as long-lasting. And of course the joker monk could also get it.

    - Giacomo

  27. - Top - End - #837
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    Worira's Avatar

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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by Talic View Post
    Wrong. I showed that the druid, at level 20, which is FAR higher than the monk you designed, is only on par with most CR 20 monsters. The monk, since, by your own admission, is worse than something that is on par, is below par. It will not be contributing effectively. This isn't me bashing anything. It's me saying that someone that can make 72 grapple checks at +30 is not going to beat the one creature that makes 3 checks at +50. Why? Because he'll never successfully establish a grapple.
    Actually, your druid is an above par build using sub par tactics. Grappling sucks horribly at high levels. Hence why, again, my build is not a grapple build. Yes, the monk is a crappy class, and yes, my build would be better with 17 levels of warblade and 3 of warshaper. But it would also be less awesome. My character can slice someone's head off with its bare hands, or extend a finger 5 feet and spear someone through the chest with it. And has free healing.
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  28. - Top - End - #838

    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Quote Originally Posted by Talic View Post
    Bottom line. There is no clear cut definition of "familiar" by D&D standards. It's up to players and DM's to decide. However, if you go uber-restrictive, and tell your players that if they pick anything other than wolf or dire weasel, that they're horrible optimizers, and they can't be familiar with that creature, or carte blanche tell the druid that he can't turn into half the woodsy creatures, you know what you're doing?

    You're curtailing a players options without a RAW basis for doing so. You're denying a player's wishes without a RAW reason. IMO, that's not a good if to take, without a really, REALLY good reason.
    Stoping the druid from dominating the game thanks to wildshape/companion abuse isn't a good enough reason? Oh gods, what have I done?

    Then by all means, for this thread purposes the animal companion and familiarities of the druid will be randomly determined for fairness sake. You may be the leader of the cult of the tiger...Or the mighty housecat paragon.

    Ironically, you also ignore the ways my group runs the games:

    1-The companion isn't your personal mindless bot. You can teach him tricks, but who controls it is the DM.

    2-The animal companion stats will be secretly rolled and it's feats and skills secretly chosen by the DM. So you may end up with something stronger than normal, or weaker, but you won't know untill battle actually starts.

    3-The druid is suposed to suport nature, and the animal companion is part of that nature. Using the companion as an expendable meat shield will aproach the druid from breaking his code. Same for summoning animals just to set off traps. They may not really die, but it's still animal torture.

  29. - Top - End - #839
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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Hmm, most of the spells you plan on using you won't be getting from items that you won't need UMD to activate. Fly, sure, just grab the right boots. (Speaking of which, what maneuverability do you get there?) But silence, AMF, Divine Power? Those will be wands. Which you cannot use effectively, as has been demonstrated time and again. Your monk depends heavily on magical enhancement, so the fact that he sucks at UMD is highly relevant.
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  30. - Top - End - #840
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    Worira's Avatar

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    Default Re: Beating Batman: Sir Giacomo's Guide to Monks

    Out of curiosity, Giacomo, what are your monk's stats in an AMF? Because a barbarian grappler can UMD AMF just as well as you.
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