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Goatman_Ted
2009-06-02, 09:04 PM
@Ixahinon--Ack! I thought I deleted that post because the number was so variable depending on level of optimization.

But my point is that the guy who does the most damage is going to be attacked back. Every round a monster spends eating the BSF's face is a round the Wizard doesn't have to waste actions avoiding it.

And if the Monk's hiding on the side, only dealing a little bit of damage, not getting through the other guys' damage reduction and generally not affecting the fight, why would any opponent bother him, intelligent or not? He's not as annoying as the Barbarian that actually hurts them and stays in plain view.

Edit:

Show me a single-class Monk build that can do 50 damage AND move at least 30 feet in the same turn and I'll agree with you.

Monk 20.
Feats:
Dodge, Mobility, Spring Attack, Power Attack, whatever

Get the Wizard to cast Polymorph Any Object on you at level 15, just like any other Fighter. Turn into something with a high Strength.

Get Greater Magic Weapon/Fang somewhere. Add some basic Strength boosters.

Don't use Unarmed Strike. Forget Unarmed Strike. Two-Hand a Quarterstaff.

Fin.

(50 is admittedly a skewed estimate -- which way is going to vary by group -- I was trying to approximate how much damage Monks did in the OP's games, according to what he's said so far)

Ixahinon
2009-06-02, 09:16 PM
Show me a single-class Monk build that can do 50 damage AND move at least 30 feet in the same turn and I'll agree with you.

First off...I know I'm maximizing here, but while I don't mind monks...I'm not a monk buff...don't know any of those awesome feats they can take...so I'm sticking with what I know, which is just Monk Damage at 20, Monk speed at 20, 2d10 damage at 20, and Sprink Attack, with magic items. So here goes.

20th level Monk with 23 base strength, +6 Strength Item, Spring Attack, and a stance that gives +2 to Strength. 31 total. Handwraps/Brass Knuckles/whatever you can get and enchant it with Burning Weapon (Flaming Burst).

90 Foot movement speed.

2d10 + 1d6 (+1d10 Critical) + 11 damage.

24 damage on one hit. 31 if it criticaled.

This is the basic of the basic (Provided he started with 18 strength) And as stated before I am sure there are feats that allow a second strike on a standard action (I origionally thought Duel Strike...but found that that is only for two weapon fighters). If you can find someway to make Power Attack work reliably, there's more damage. etc.

I'm sure someone out there with more knowledge on monk feats could give you that single hit 53 damage spring attack monk.

Doc Roc
2009-06-02, 09:18 PM
:: snaps ::
That's it, we're leaving.
You've repeatedly ignored my posts because they are simply inconvenient to you. This is not a discussion, this is a miserable soapbox. Can we talk about this seriously? Or are you going to keep ignoring me?

Eldariel
2009-06-02, 09:21 PM
First off...I know I'm maximizing here, but while I don't mind monks...I'm not a monk buff...don't know any of those awesome feats they can take...so I'm sticking with what I know, which is just Monk Damage at 20, Monk speed at 20, 2d10 damage at 20, and Sprink Attack, with magic items. So here goes.

20th level Monk with 23 base strength, +6 Strength Item, Spring Attack, and a stance that gives +2 to Strength. 31 total. Handwraps/Brass Knuckles/whatever you can get and enchant it with Burning Weapon (Flaming Burst).

90 Foot movement speed.

2d10 + 1d6 (+1d10 Critical) + 11 damage.

24 damage on one hit. 31 if it criticaled.

This is the basic of the basic (Provided he started with 18 strength) And as stated before I am sure there are feats that allow a second strike on a standard action (I origionally thought Duel Strike...but found that that is only for two weapon fighters). If you can find someway to make Power Attack work reliably, there's more damage. etc.

I'm sure someone out there with more knowledge on monk feats could give you that single hit 53 damage spring attack mage.

Your attack bonus is +25... You have a 50% chance to miss even the lowest AC opponents on that level, and most will just Fast Heal for more than that each turn. If you stood up to it, you could flurry for 5-6 (when using Boots of Speed or under Haste or whatever) such attacks and be dishing out 120 damage (provided all hit).

Now, how does Spring Attack help your party again, other than cutting your (already weak) damage output to ~1/4th (accounting for To Hit)? You're actually doing less for your party when Spring Attacking. Sure, you might be slightly safer yourself (although as you can only move 45' to a direction and magical buffs don't improve that, you'll still be in the attack range of almost anything), but you aren't protecting your allies in any ways, nor dealing meaningful damage, nor really doing anything else.

Ixahinon
2009-06-02, 09:36 PM
I like the idea of polymorphing first, and Greater Magic weapon, that would help too.

And I'm not used to the overpowered games that people play now 'n days...but I can't think of a 'common creature' at level 20 that has Fast Healing 20. Hell..most of the elder evils I know of don't even have Fast healing 20. Atropus does, Father Llymric doesn't, I think the hulks have Fast healing of 15...and I think that's just one of them.

I can't think of any Devil (Bel, Dispater, Mammon, Belial and Fierna, Levistus, Glasya, Baalzebul, and even Mephistopheles) that has Fast Healing 20..or any Demons....and they are pretty pominent figures.

The damage I gave...yea...not that good against even those that don't have Fast healing 20....but it is damage...and it does add up...and it does keep the enemy from 'eating their face' as one person mentioned. I like having someone who is doing damage, no matter how little, that is still alive and kicking.

Eldariel
2009-06-02, 09:57 PM
I like the idea of polymorphing first, and Greater Magic weapon, that would help too.

And I'm not used to the overpowered games that people play now 'n days...but I can't think of a 'common creature' at level 20 that has Fast Healing 20. Hell..most of the elder evils I know of don't even have Fast healing 20. Atropus does, Father Llymric doesn't, I think the hulks have Fast healing of 15...and I think that's just one of them.

I can't think of any Devil (Bel, Dispater, Mammon, Belial and Fierna, Levistus, Glasya, Baalzebul, and even Mephistopheles) that has Fast Healing 20..or any Demons....and they are pretty pominent figures.

The Tarrasque has Fast Healing 40. Apparently Demons and Devils lose Fast Healing later on, but they have DR 15/Cold Iron-Silver + Good, which kinda makes the 24 damage feel a little less, especially since the elemental damage goes to resistances.


The damage I gave...yea...not that good against even those that don't have Fast healing 20....but it is damage...and it does add up...and it does keep the enemy from 'eating their face' as one person mentioned. I like having someone who is doing damage, no matter how little, that is still alive and kicking.

Well, I'd rather have someone who can deal enough damage to actually threaten its life with the party's help. If given the choice between someone who can deal 200 points of damage a turn but takes an equivalent amount and someone who deals 20 a turn but leaves others to take the damage for him, I'd take the 200-damage guy in a heartbeat.

Simply because the skirmisher doesn't stop any damage, and takes 10 turns longer (at the very least) to kill. He just directs it to the more fragile party members who don't have his speed instead. The beatstick at least takes it to himself so he can get the Mass Heal for full HP again. The Monk may stay alive longer, but if the party dies, he's going down too because he's still not dealing in any way relevant damage and his effort doesn't stop the rest of the party from dying, unlike that of a decent beatstick.

Ixahinon
2009-06-02, 10:12 PM
Well..even then...if there is a meat stick that the enemy is going ot focus on, that allows the Monk to flurry and Stunning Fist and blah blah blah. More damage. 24 x5 = 120 damage. Yea, yea..if all hit...and they probably wont..but again..it adds up, and contributes damage. Who cares if it's less damage than the meat stick..you WANT the meat stick to do more damage, right? That way it's taking the hits, and not you...am I right?

So either way...Monk = support with fairly decent damage given that it is support, and not a damager. If, for some reason the monk is getting attack, enter in the spring attack manuvers, to let the heavy hitter get in a few more hits to once again gain it's attention, then come back in and beat on the enemy's back again.

I think this is the definition of support, actually...The monk (just like the rest of the party) is there to help the the enemy die faster.

Doc Roc
2009-06-02, 10:17 PM
Why won't you listen to me? I'm asking seriously why you have failed to read any of what I've posted.

Ixahinon
2009-06-02, 10:23 PM
eep...double post.

Doc Roc
2009-06-02, 10:24 PM
I've skipped fear and headed straight to anger. Next stop, the dark side.

chiasaur11
2009-06-02, 10:28 PM
I've skipped fear and headed straight to anger. Next stop, the dark side.

But then you might stop being played by Hayden Christensen and be voiced by James Earl Jones!

Oh, wait. Carry on then.

Doc Roc
2009-06-02, 10:28 PM
Baseball, Ray, Baseball.

Dark_Scary
2009-06-02, 10:36 PM
@Regarding 30 damage Spring attack Monk.

1) Balor and Pit Fiend. Neither is a pure combat monster. Either could beat you to death without ever using an SLA.

a) DR 15 for each. Your attack that hypothetically does 25 damage is now doing ten damage. Oh yeah, and some of that was fire, that they are immune to. Pit Fiend has Regeneration 5. You are now doing about 2 damage per round.

b) They have a 60ft fly and 90ft fly speed, you can't even Spring attack them at all.

c) They do more damage on a readied action to strike you then you do to them.

These are melee/spellcasting hybrid monsters, and they can destroy you. Try looking at an actual combat beast, IE one of the CR 20 Dragons. (Okay, so they can also cast spells, so what.)

Eldariel
2009-06-02, 11:19 PM
I think this is the definition of support, actually...The monk (just like the rest of the party) is there to help the the enemy die faster.

So why have Monk instead of another beatstick? Wouldn't beatstick just do the same job better, dealing more damage and protecting the others? What exactly is this "support"-role you speak of? What kind of support does Monk give?

To me it seems like he's a subpar damage dealer; he doesn't buff anyone's saves, attacks or give anyone extra HP or inconvenience opponents. Support = making others do their stuff better. The only thing you listed is Stunning Fist; no other Monk-ability helps your allies fight the enemy in any way, and without focus that ability is useless by level ~10 or so due to opposition's insane Fort-saves. If you want to force saves, you should be a Wizard anyways. If you don't support, you deal damage yourself. In that game, there are only good and bad damage dealers. Monk is pitiful compared to the other options.

Take a party with this "support Monk" (that is, a bad damage dealer Monk) and replace it with a Barbarian. I'll guarantee the party will fare much better against equivalent CR encounters with the Barbarian than with the Monk. And this is without even going to the truly powerful classes like Druid or Cleric. But that's something for another day. The only slot a Monk occupies in a party is the "dead weight"-one. And no party needs that filled.

sofawall
2009-06-02, 11:44 PM
Much like the poster above me, I would like to know what a monk brings to party that a barbarian does not.

Ixahinon
2009-06-02, 11:45 PM
1) There are more ways to be supportive without activelly casting something on someone. Grabbing the attention of an extra enemy, and keeping them company via pot shots/grappling/tripping/running around like a chicken**** while the other's kill it's partner is support without casting anything.

2) To me...the fact that you mention playing another beatstick compared to a monk is kinda moot. I mean...if a beatstick is that awesome (And they can be..not arguing that), why not just have those...same differance.

3) Monks aren't great at everything, no. The crap ass monk I prepared on the fly is just that, a crap ass monk I prepared on the fly. You can't be prepared for everything, unless you are caster.

I'm playing in a campaign with a monk that is a tumbling, jumping, disarming fool, and he's done soo much to make fights easier for the rest of us. Most memorable is when he ran up a flight of stairs, turned a corner, and leaped on the back of a giant rune spider, starling it into bucking and what not to get the monk off it's back, thus allowing us attacks of opportunity, to which we killed it with relitive ease soon after. He managed to get in a few punches while riding that spider's ass, too.

And, just to counter my own points, that same tumbling, jumping diarming fool monk totally sucked balls when we ran up against an Orge Rock Thrower, he just got smashed. Certain people shine in certain situations...that's how D&D was in 2nd, and should be now...not the 'I hitz u wit my Godsword fer 500 damage, fool!' it is now.

If you are playing a hack 'n slash bloodfest with monsters that are out of children's nightmares...don't play a monk. If you are playing a game that rewards fancy Role-Play and inovative support tactics such as the tumbling, jumping, disarming fool monk above...monks rock.

Yes, yes. 'Well...I can make a fighter that can do all that.' I suppose you could, if you wanted to go high dex, forgo heavy armor, and carry light weapons, but then...you aren't pulling the heavy damage a fighter could pull out.

Eldariel
2009-06-02, 11:53 PM
Yes, yes. 'Well...I can make a fighter that can do all that.' I suppose you could, if you wanted to go high dex, forgo heavy armor, and carry light weapons, but then...you aren't pulling the heavy damage a fighter could pull out.

Eh, Str > Dex > Con > Int Fighter does it all just fine while maintaining his damage potency. Or a generic Barbarian. Or a Ranger. They actually pull the disarm- and grapple-parts much better thanks to full BAB. I don't see why you'd need to be a Monk to pull any of that off. I mean, yeah, jumping on a monster is a nice trick and overall, utilizing the environment is cool - you can check Saph's Red Hand of Doom journal for a Fighter that used just the trick as her primary weapon on Dragons! Just because you have a decent damage output (such as a Barbarian, a Fighter or a Ranger) doesn't mean you shouldn't use your skills and the other tricks at your disposal.

So no, there's nothing Monk-unique in that, or overall skill monkery. And hell, instead of a Monk, you could be a Rogue and get much more skillpoints, larger skill list, better damage output and Use Magic Device. Oh, and Trapfinding so that you aren't a corpse when scouting ahead. If you want to play Monks, fine, but you just won't be contributing more than a non-Monk party member would be in your stead practically ever.

Dark_Scary
2009-06-03, 12:11 AM
1) There are more ways to be supportive without activelly casting something on someone. Grabbing the attention of an extra enemy, and keeping them company via pot shots/grappling/tripping/running around like a chicken**** while the other's kill it's partner is support without casting anything.

Barbarians are better at pot shots/grappling/tripping. And Running around doesn't actually do anything at all, ever.


3) Monks aren't great at everything, no. The crap ass monk I prepared on the fly is just that, a crap ass monk I prepared on the fly. You can't be prepared for everything, unless you are caster.

Monks aren't great at anything at all. The crap ass Monk you prepared on the fly is not just not prepared for everything, he is not prepared for anything.

He is completely useless against every single CR 20 challenge in the MM.

mostlyharmful
2009-06-03, 02:18 AM
1) There are more ways to be supportive without activelly casting something on someone. Grabbing the attention of an extra enemy, and keeping them company via pot shots/grappling/tripping/running around like a chicken**** while the other's kill it's partner is support without casting anything.

And how exactly do you grab their attention? They don't care, you do piddly damage that's either ignored or healed away every round. And that's if they aren't using a movement style that you cant reach (burrow, incorporeal, teleport, fast flight....) but I mean really, what high level CR monster has wacky movement available.... oh yeah.....


2) To me...the fact that you mention playing another beatstick compared to a monk is kinda moot. I mean...if a beatstick is that awesome (And they can be..not arguing that), why not just have those...same differance.

Because they're not all that awesome, they just have a role and fill it. Which is more than the monk. There's far more useful things the party could have in that slot up to and including a meatshield/beatstick that didn't cost xp and gold to the rest of them. The question isn't 'why should they have another beatstick instead of a monk?' its 'Why do we have this monk guy with us again?'.


3) Monks aren't great at everything, no. The crap ass monk I prepared on the fly is just that, a crap ass monk I prepared on the fly. You can't be prepared for everything, unless you are caster.

But it would be nice if you were prepared for something.


If you are playing a hack 'n slash bloodfest with monsters that are out of children's nightmares...don't play a monk. If you are playing a game that rewards fancy Role-Play and inovative support tactics such as the tumbling, jumping, disarming fool monk above...monks rock.

No, the playstyle that responds to that kind of game with inovation and skill use rocks, nothing particular to Monk about it. And you're coming very close to the Oberoni Boneheadedness of power=bad for roleplay.


Yes, yes. 'Well...I can make a fighter that can do all that.' I suppose you could, if you wanted to go high dex, forgo heavy armor, and carry light weapons, but then...you aren't pulling the heavy damage a fighter could pull out.

yes you would, power attack multipliers and crit ranges on decent weapons along with a crap ton of feats can push you over the 'useful' threashold still. That's the event horizon behind which your Monk is getting crushed by the black hole of pointlessness.

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 02:32 AM
What will you do as a pure monk if I send a couple of shadows after you?
Or dread wraiths?


Good monk builds exist. They use a variety of exotic components for dips and equipment, and are very hard to make. A lot of them lean heavily on the superb swordsage base class, and play almost nothing like generic monks. I'm sorry, but you've manage to champion a cause that literally needs nothing of what you offer.

If you suggest that I am a bad gamer because I like slightly more powerful characters.... I'm not really sure what I'll do. Probably whine a lot.

Kurald Galain
2009-06-03, 03:27 AM
What people don't understand is that Monk is by and large a support class.
Actually, as written he's more like a self-defense class. Most of his abilities defend himself (somewhat) rather than support anyone.



The monk should scout ahead/be ahead of the party, and when he notices danger, use his 60ft movement speed or whatever level he's at to Beline back to the party and notify.
Yeah, but that's done better by the rogue, ranger, druid, bard, and anyone with a familiar. Oops.



The monk should be in battle ahead of the party, perhaps with a ranger or some other scout class, 'softening' up the troop of orcs spotted heading towards the party camp,
That's just bad tactics and liable to get the monk killed. Softening people up doesn't work in D&D since there are no wound penalties (and the monk has no reliable debuffs).


The monkisn't suppose to be a baddass 'I hit you for 1,000,000,000 points of damage' damager...
That's funny because most monk supporters tend to claim exactly this.


The Monk is suppose to use his stunning fist/tripping/grappling/pinning/tumbling skills to make the fighter or barbarian kill the enemy, not him
Tripping is done better by anyone with a good BAB and strength focus (e.g. fighter/ranger/paladin/barbarian, or even cleric or druid in a pinch). Grappling is poor strategy, but is done better by any (you guessed it) anyone with a good BAB and strength focus. Tumbling is not a strategy in and of itself, and is still done better by any actual skill monkey like the rogue or bard.

Solo adventuring? Play a warlock, they're much better at it.


If you aren't slaying 7 people a day, the class sucks.
Really? My beguiler has never slain anyone, and is still a contender for MVP any day of the week.


Good monk builds exist. They use a variety of exotic components for dips and equipment, and are very hard to make.
Yes. Every time, the best monk build is the one that tries hardest at not being a monk, and almost every time, the build can be improved by replacing the few monk levels it has by fighter or barbarian. For instance, one of the best monk builds is monk 1 / druid 19.

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 03:30 AM
This is not precisely true. There is a really cool exploit that uses knight + monk + drunken master + extremely funny literalism to produce 50 feet of difficult terrain using a ladder. Few other good monk-monk builds exist, like soul drinker builds and such, but they are again very dip heavy.


I wonder what he will say to the mention of shadows and dread wraiths?

mostlyharmful
2009-06-03, 04:40 AM
20th level Monk with 23 base strength

How the hell do you get a monk with 23 base? If you put 18 into it you've either got a point buy in the 50s or you're gimping yourself, one of the main problems of Monks is their MAD, you blow the lot on trying for damage output and you'll get ganked on saves, AC and DC of everything Monkish you try to do.


and a stance that gives +2 to Strength

So ToB is available? Then why do a 'support' character that can't support rather than a SS with actual supportive maneuvers?


31 total. Handwraps/Brass Knuckles/whatever you can get

None of which are special Monk weapons so no flurry, not a problem for a springattacking monk but they're also all homebrew, not bad homebrew for a monk but still YMMV.


and enchant it with Burning Weapon (Flaming Burst).

It's 20th level. Everything's got at least 10 fire resistance and has had for ten levels.


90 Foot movement speed.

Fly trounces it, moving in 3 dimensions is far more powerful, plenty of things even fly faster - see Dragons, Air Elementals, Phantom Steeds, etc.... plus the things that can teleport or DimDoor about....


2d10 + 1d6 (+1d10 Critical) + 11 damage.

2d10+11 is an average of 22. most things at this level sneeze harder than that.


24 damage on one hit. 31 if it criticaled.

And how many things are vulnerable to crits by level 20. And it's still just 33 since everyone ignores the fire (the average result of a d10 is 5.5 by the way, not 5.)


This is the basic of the basic

actually it seems quite a lot of work to invest in one tactic of bouncing around slapping something once a turn - three of your seven feats, homebrewed handwraps, all out on the Str attribute - it seems to be what your Monk is solely capable of....


(Provided he started with 18 strength)

Your Monk is going to get flattened by anything that it fights for the majority of it's career, at crazy L20 you can afford stat boosters for everything, miss chance items, mobility items and AC boosts but for the bulk of the time that build will be a sitting duck with no AC, no hp, no initiative and sucky saves.


And as stated before I am sure there are feats that allow a second strike on a standard action (I origionally thought Duel Strike...but found that that is only for two weapon fighters).

good feat but it's hardly monk specific, flurry is a full round action after all. sounds like it's far more useful to a build with full BAB and a SAD Str focuss, they'll hit and hurt the opponent so an extra action/attack would make some difference, as it is the Monk would just not matter more often.


If you can find someway to make Power Attack work reliably, there's more damage. etc.

Such as if they had full BAB and a SAD str and hadn't blown three feats on Springattacking so they could afford to make power attack work.... ways like that you mean....

MickJay
2009-06-03, 07:09 AM
Can we just agree that Monks were designed for lower-magic setting and without much thinking of "optimizing"? The builds commonly considered "proper", which outshine monks in every respect, were not even foreseen when Monks, as class, were made. Yes, monks suck because they're more difficult to "optimize" and when everyone else is "playing right", they're more or less useless. Optimizers criticize monks, those who don't care much about the crunch tend to like them, and that's all there is to it. People who actually play monks like them, for a reason (that is, monks can be quite good when other players don't bother gaining too many mechanical advantages for their characters).

All in all, monks can be either totally useless or quite decent, depending on the style in which the group is playing, and all the arguments about how weak (or strong) are the monks are perpetrated by people with different and usually incompatible approaches to gaming (see the story of blind men and the elephant).

Eldariel
2009-06-03, 07:09 AM
This is not precisely true. There is a really cool exploit that uses knight + monk + drunken master + extremely funny literalism to produce 50 feet of difficult terrain using a ladder. Few other good monk-monk builds exist, like soul drinker builds and such, but they are again very dip heavy.

Eh, the core of the issue is straight Monk. Nobody bats an eye at Tashalatoran King of Smack or Sacred Fist (Giant Size!) or hell, Shadow Sun Ninja. The people though champion the idea that Monk is a great class in and of itself without multiclassing.

Kurald Galain
2009-06-03, 07:38 AM
Can we just agree that Monks were designed for lower-magic setting and without much thinking of "optimizing"?
Well, no. Because monks as written are so heavily reliant on magical items that in a lower-magic setting, they become even worse.


The builds commonly considered "proper", which outshine monks in every respect, were not even foreseen when Monks, as class, were made.
Yes they were, because these "builds considered proper" include a core-only wizard, cleric and druid, and heck, even a core-only non-optimized fighter outshines a monk. The fighter can spend his feats to duplicate monk abilities, and end up with better BAB, less MADness, more hit points and feats left over.

It's not about optimization: it's about non-optimized classes outshining an optimized monk without even trying.

Dark_Scary
2009-06-03, 07:55 AM
Can we just agree that Monks were designed for lower-magic setting and without much thinking of "optimizing"? The builds commonly considered "proper", which outshine monks in every respect, were not even foreseen when Monks, as class, were made.

You mean Barbarian 20 had never been foreseen when Monks were made?

That's really odd seeing as they are in the same book, and Barbarian even comes before Monk.

Glyde
2009-06-03, 08:13 AM
That's really odd seeing as they are in the same book, and Barbarian even comes before Monk.

That's because it's alphabetical...


My opinion on Monks is just get the player to play unarmed swordsage, and let them qualify for (most) things that require monk levels. If they really don't want to play ToB, let them play a fighter with monk unarmed progression - Though that's a really cheap and messy workaround.

MickJay
2009-06-03, 08:25 AM
This is why I don't like these arguments: even though there ARE people who manage to shine with their monks and like them, there's always someone trying to prove that it's impossible, because other classes can do everything better. :smalltongue:

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 08:29 AM
Baseball, Ray, Baseball.

So what's a monk to do about shadows or dread wraiths?

Killer Angel
2009-06-03, 09:32 AM
This is why I don't like these arguments: even though there ARE people who manage to shine with their monks and like them, there's always someone trying to prove that it's impossible, because other classes can do everything better. :smalltongue:


You can like your monk, and you can even do moderately well with him, but it's not a matter of taste, it's a matter of game mechanics and sheer numbers.
You can like a Scale mail as much as you want, but a Chain shirt is better, and counterargumenting that the Scale mail gives the same armor bonus than the Chain shirt, dont change the reality of numbers.

derfenrirwolv
2009-06-03, 09:41 AM
A) /



I have my 3.0 books in front of me

Let me point you to the section in the 3.0 srd

Bonuses of different types always stack. Identical types of bonuses do not stack.
Different named bonus types all stack, but usually a named bonus does not stack with another bonus of the same name (except for enhancement bonuses to armor and shields, enhancement bonuses to ranged weapons and their ammunition, dodge bonuses, synergy bonuses, and some circumstance bonuses).

Enhancement: An enhancement bonus represents an increase in the strength or effectiveness of a character’s armor or weapon or a general bonus to an ability score.

http://www.opengamingfoundation.org/srd.html




B) WotC are pedantic about the newer D&D video games following their rules, and this is the way Neverwinter Nights works.[/QUOTE]

Neverwinternights is not D&D. Its an approximation of it at best.

MickJay
2009-06-03, 10:24 AM
You can like your monk, and you can even do moderately well with him, but it's not a matter of taste, it's a matter of game mechanics and sheer numbers.
You can like a Scale mail as much as you want, but a Chain shirt is better, and counterargumenting that the Scale mail gives the same armor bonus than the Chain shirt, dont change the reality of numbers.

Of course it's the matter of mechanics and sheer numbers - and for many gamers, these are of little importance, and that's precisely the reason why the arguments about monks are an exercise in futility. Example: you're telling me Chain is better, I say I like Scale and I'm doing quite well with it - but you know that, from mechanical perspective, Chain is better, and you'll be pointing out to me that Scale is worse; then I'll say, okay, but in some situations it doesn't make a difference, or perhaps Scale could be better for some purpose, and then you'll repeat, while getting angry, that Chain is still better, then I'll say that Scale doesn't really suck that bad just because Chain is better, and so on, and so on. After a few (or few dozen) arguments you still know that Chain is better and refuse to acknowledge usefulness of Scale, I still like my Scale (even though I know Chain is better), and we've both wasted our time. Substitute Scale with Monk and Chain with any "good" class and you have the essence of 95% of "Monk" threads...

woodenbandman
2009-06-03, 11:16 AM
Meh it all depends on the players. I am a Dm and had a level 17 Vop half-ogre monk who wiped the floor against everything I sent against him. Hell I chucked a CR 26 solar angel at him by himself and he killed it. However I did let him flurry as a Standard action and Dimesion door unlimited times per day. He also had a church permancy Enlarge person on him. To my knowledge monks seem to do okay but you just cant fight like a barb or fighter with them.

Are you quite sure you played the Solar correctly? I mean, they do get stuff like, I dunno, IMMUNITY TO DAMAGE (DR/EPIC and Regeneration/evil, which the monk can't get), Wish as an SLA once per day, Holy Word + CDG, and the ability to attack the monk from far away, with their dancing greatswords AND slaying arrows. Did you even use any of that?

Goatman_Ted
2009-06-03, 11:25 AM
Your Monk is going to get flattened by anything that it fights for the majority of it's career, at crazy L20 you can afford stat boosters for everything, miss chance items, mobility items and AC boosts but for the bulk of the time that build will be a sitting duck with no AC, no hp, no initiative and sucky saves.

What's the point of jumping on Ixahinon's CharOp again?

I was the one who said 50 damage and I tried to remove it because the number is either outrageously high or low, depending on group.

Just pretend he said 'Polymorph Any Object,' 'Stacking size increases,' 'Wands at high levels' or 'Power Attacking with a Quarterstaff'.

The point was the Monk's role in a group. If he is doing comparatively low damage (I used 50 as an example) and spending all his time on the sidelines, he's not helping anyone but himself.

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 11:26 AM
Are you quite sure you played the Solar correctly? I mean, they do get stuff like, I dunno, IMMUNITY TO DAMAGE (DR/EPIC and Regeneration/evil, which the monk can't get), Wish as an SLA once per day, Holy Word + CDG, and the ability to attack the monk from far away, with their dancing greatswords AND slaying arrows. Did you even use any of that?

Why would you actually use a monster's abilities? They're just fluff, roight... roight? ;)

SLAs are just there for flavor, after all.

:: troll bombs, away! ::

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 11:28 AM
What's the point of jumping on Ixahinon's CharOp skills again?



I guess, to be entirely blunt, I'm deeply frustrated with this entire dialogue, and the fact that I have to keep having it. I'll freely admit that the enemy here is likely me.

Dark_Scary
2009-06-03, 11:47 AM
or perhaps Scale could be better for some purpose

Scale is not better for any purpose at all. If you make false claims, people will call you on it. If you only ever say, "I like Scale even though it is worse in every way." We won't.

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 11:52 AM
Scale is not better for any purpose at all. If you make false claims, people will call you on it. If you only ever say, "I like Scale even though it is worse in every way." We won't.

I've never ever seen anyone in scale mail in 3.5. Just saying. I'm getting the feeling after four years that maybe it's not an undiscovered gem. :: angry grin ::

Jayabalard
2009-06-03, 12:01 PM
You mean Barbarian 20 had never been foreseen when Monks were made?No, it hadn't been forseen at that point. When the monk class was made, the only classes were fighting-man, magic-user, cleric, thief and paladin. The barbarian class didn't get added until much later.


You can like a Scale mail as much as you want, but a Chain shirt is better, and counterargumenting that the Scale mail gives the same armor bonus than the Chain shirt, dont change the reality of numbers.Better is a qualitative statement, and for some people that evaluation is going to include more than just the numbers. In general, arguing that the numbers say that chain shirt is better than scale mail isn't a meaningful argument to the people that you're arguing with.

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 12:10 PM
No, it hadn't been forseen at that point. When the monk class was made, the only classes were fighting-man, magic-user, cleric, thief and paladin. The barbarian class didn't get added until much later.

I... What? Oh my god, what the ****ing hell is ****ing wrong with you?

We aren't talking about 1st edition, or 2nd, or my beloved Ad&d 2ed + planescape. We're not even talking about 3.0. We're talking 3.5. Where the monk did _not_ post-date the barbarian during design. Certainly, they had a chance to fix him in this weird thing called the revised edition.

Do you take pleasure in taking inane stances with no factual backing or relevance just to frustrate the dying attempts at a rational discussion?


-----------------------------------------------

Ask the GM to let you reflavor as needed, and take the stats for the chainmail shirt as scale mail. You know that scale mail is generally worse in real life too? This is why there's the reflavor as needed clause. So that we can have our mechanics and write our on fluff instead of being hide-bound drones who hear only what we're told in the descriptive blurbs.

Jayabalard
2009-06-03, 12:20 PM
I... What? Oh my god, what the ****ing hell is ****ing wrong with you? I am only saying that because I care - there are a lot of decaffeinated brands on the market today that are just as tasty as the real thing.


Do you take pleasure in taking inane stances with no factual backingI think there's plenty of factual backing; D&D released with the first 3 classes, greyhawk had the next 2, and blackmoor had the monk and assassin. Feel free to attack it based on what you feel is relevant, but it seems kind of silly to attack it's factuality.

As for relevance: design decisions ("Can we just agree that Monks were designed for lower-magic setting" ), even in 3.x edition, can often be traced all the way back to OD&D. Certainly they could have "fixed" things, but for the Monk they (for whatever reason) chose to hold on to a much older design. That's a major reason why the class is a bit of out of place in 3.x D&D.


Ask the GM to let you reflavor as needed, and take the stats for the chainmail shirt as scale mail. You know that scale mail is generally worse in real life too?Alternatively, I could just use it as is ... because if I'm picking scale mail, I don't really care about the mechanical advantage of the chain shirt.


What do you do?Sometimes I talk to people, sometimes I punch or kick people, sometimes I sneak around, sometimes I help figure out puzzles, sometimes i go around exploring. In general, people call it adventuring.

Lycar
2009-06-03, 12:59 PM
I've never ever seen anyone in scale mail in 3.5. Just saying. I'm getting the feeling after four years that maybe it's not an undiscovered gem. :: angry grin ::

What, you never played a 1st level game? Ever? That might explain a few things... :smalltongue:

Seriously: If you do only have 100gp starting money, you don't just buy a chain shirt, because it is the only armour worth having (beside full plate or mithral breast plate, but that is another problem with D&D..), you buy a scale mail, because you like having a weapon too. And a sack to carry all the loot in. :smallwink:

Or you go really hardcore and pick studded leather. More money for loot sacks. :smallbiggrin:

Soo... in this instance you are not really faulting someone for picking scale mail over the chain shirt, now are you. :smallamused:

And it is the same thing with monks. Up to 5th level or so, they are perfectly viable. Preferably as a 5th party member though.

Lycar

MickJay
2009-06-03, 01:12 PM
As Jaya noted, better statistics is just one kind of "better", and if I don't care about statistics that much, "Scale", "Monk" or whatever CAN be better than what's better from purely mechanical perspective. If I want to roleplay a conservative warrior form a land where chain mail has not been developed yet, scale armor will be better for him and, by extension, to me. If I want to roleplay a class with some weird abilities, then I'll play a monk, even if a fighter with a few trinkets could do it "better". Yes, some people do put fluff/playing a character they want above crunch and mechanical advantages, to the point where they're willing to forfeit some of those advantages. And if that becomes a problem for the party, then the DM can simply agree to make a few concessions for the Monk's player and actually make the character a bit stronger. Is it still the Monk described in the handbook? No. Do I care? No. :smalltongue:

Kaiyanwang
2009-06-03, 01:14 PM
Even if I generally agree with the monk-bashing arguments, I'll play now the devil's advocate role (I love baatezu!).

I have an example of a monk very useful in a campaing! It's my past Epic campaing. As someone said before, he was able to do one thing:

Do not die. Ever.

And it bringed accidentally to alot of heroic situations, because in moments of panic and desperation, the party leader (the fighter) always sent the monk after a problematic enemy to gain time, make meleers regroup, casters summon allies, remove debuffs and so on.

What happened? The monk one-shotted the enemy (with his vorpal epic fists, or, one time, a with QUIVERING PALM.

He never used QP at all, but that day he one-shotted an advanced old wyrm red dragon with five heads (he one shotted another shadow dragon with his vorpal hands previously - I said "this time that lucky a-hole will have to behead FIVE heads:smallbiggrin:)

Don't get me wrong: the dragons were not played retarded (or at least, so retarded, because sometime I think that a REALLYproperly used great wyrm wold wipe ANY party).

Simply, they were debuffed, or tricked by the situations and tired for the long combat. My players weren't dumb - used terrain at best. The bosses tried to SKIP the monk (maybe no teleport because countered or DAnchored) to focus on a caster but that lucky bastard had the nice roll at the right moment after a well placed jump.

Monk 20 // Shintao Monk 20. :smalltongue: For you, Tariomildesummosdeosbibosfabis. (yeah, it's the name).


What I want to say with it? That monk it's powerful? No. So you are doing it wrong improving or fixing it? At all..

I would simply say that sometimes you make your own fortune and it's not such an alien thing find someone have fun with monks. YEAH for a lot of campaings it sucks. But the way martial characters in general are played always makes me concerned, because I find the sentence "I can only charge and full attack" very true and very funny at the same time.

Another thing it's the DM. I managed to allow/disallow options that favoured this or that class, power wise. Sometimes players managed to help each other - the most powerful weapons were crafted by the wizard of the party, and sometimes I "turned to another side" about WBL. The game went fine (for an epic level game, of course :smallwink:), so I'm sure I did it right.

On the other hand, there were situations when the monk rocked because all the party was naked, no books or holy symbols too, and in he was naked with a lot of useful things (high jumps and vorpal hands, As an example). I find quite funny, too, that people assume that you always have the right spell, the right tool or magic item and that these MUST exist in a certain game world.


Anyway, OP, yes, people think that Monk it's weak BECAUSE MONK IT'S WEAK. So weak that it' unplayable? IMHO, no. But my parameters are not of those who assume as standrad CHarOPt and, let me say this, are a little bit poisoned from them.

/celerity
/energy immunity: fire.
/bows down graciously.

Sstoopidtallkid
2009-06-03, 01:29 PM
As Jaya noted, better statistics is just one kind of "better", and if I don't care about statistics that much, "Scale", "Monk" or whatever CAN be better than what's better from purely mechanical perspective. If I want to roleplay a conservative warrior form a land where chain mail has not been developed yet, scale armor will be better for him and, by extension, to me. If I want to roleplay a class with some weird abilities, then I'll play a monk, even if a fighter with a few trinkets could do it "better". Yes, some people do put fluff/playing a character they want above crunch and mechanical advantages, to the point where they're willing to forfeit some of those advantages. And if that becomes a problem for the party, then the DM can simply agree to make a few concessions for the Monk's player and actually make the character a bit stronger. Is it still the Monk described in the handbook? No. Do I care? No. :smalltongue:All classes are equal from a roleplaying perspective(except tier 6 classes and the Truenamer, which are just sad). That only leaves mechanics to discuss, and the Monk is mechanically worse. It's specifically worse than the Unarmed Swordsage, which has IDENTICAL FLUFF! Why wouldn't you pick the one that's more effective?

Gorbash
2009-06-03, 01:41 PM
Vorpal... Hands? :smallconfused:

That Vorpal which can be added to only slashing weapons? Which unarmed attacks aren't? And can't be enchanted in any way? :smallconfused:

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 01:48 PM
What, you never played a 1st level game? Ever? That might explain a few things... :smalltongue:

Seriously: If you do only have 100gp starting money, you don't just buy a chain shirt, because it is the only armour worth having (beside full plate or mithral breast plate, but that is another problem with D&D..), you buy a scale mail, because you like having a weapon too. And a sack to carry all the loot in. :smallwink:


I actually normally take studded leather, prefering in this case to run with a fairly high dex build for early play. However, technically, while starting gold is low, EWL for first level is 1k, which means that within that first level of play, you are intended to acquire 1000 gold worth of treasure. So I shoot cheap on my starting armor, and tend to invest in a nice masterwork spiked chain. I also play a swashbuckler fairly often, which is a tier 3-4 class, and still far better than the pure monk.


I'm sorry, you just... Look. I'm sorry I've ever brought this up, but I feel like I'm being basically personally attacked, and have through-out this thread, largely due to my points being repeatedly ignored. I've given to understand that complaining about this is both a warnable offense, and not socially acceptable. :: shrug :: Answer my points, not me as a person.

sofawall
2009-06-03, 02:02 PM
Vorpal... Hands? :smallconfused:

That Vorpal which can be added to only slashing weapons? Which unarmed attacks aren't? And can't be enchanted in any way? :smallconfused:

Kensai+the feat from ToB that makes them Slashing?

Dark_Scary
2009-06-03, 02:14 PM
Do you take pleasure in taking inane stances with no factual backing or relevance just to frustrate the dying attempts at a rational discussion?

I have never seen Jaybalard say anything at all that did not seem designed specifically to kill all rational discussion.

His specialty is telling everyone that X and X+1 are just as good depending on what your favorite number is, and ignoring the obvious fact that X+1 is better is the assumption that all sane people share.

Jaybalards favorite positions:

Some people want to play imbalanced games, therefore two characters of the exact same power level should not actually have the same power. A balanced set of classes would actually be bad for D&D because then he wouldn't be able to play unbalanced games (after all, Warriors, being lower level, and deliberate unoptimization would cease to be options).

Monks are just as good as other characters because some people don't care about mechanics, and so if the Monk class did the same things it does now, but better (IE had full BAB, could flurry as a standard action), those people who don't care about mechanics would be incapable of playing the Monk class for some reason.

After all, if all classes are equally useful, then people who don't care about mechanics would be deprived of the ability to pick any class they want for non-mechanical reasons.

Oh wait, they would still be able to pick any class, they just wouldn't drag down teammates who do care about mechanics.

Jaybalard's sole contribution to any attempt to improve anything is, "But guys, improving things is bad for the universe. You should not ever improve anything!"

ChaosDefender24
2009-06-03, 02:26 PM
Baseball, Ray, Baseball.

So what's a monk to do about shadows or dread wraiths?

gloves of ghost fighting from MIC
necklace of natural weapons with ghost touch (the first one's better though)

Gorbash
2009-06-03, 02:38 PM
Kensai+the feat from ToB that makes them Slashing?

I don't see that mentioned in this:


Monk 20 // Shintao Monk 20.

Goatman_Ted
2009-06-03, 02:49 PM
I don't see that mentioned in this:

Savage Species' Amulet of Natural Weapons with PHB2's Versatile Unarmed Strike works fine.

Investment: 1 feat, 72,600 gp

Kylarra
2009-06-03, 02:50 PM
Shintao monk is a 3.0 prestige class iirc, so there's some houseruling going along as well.

Sstoopidtallkid
2009-06-03, 02:58 PM
Savage Species' Amulet of Natural Weapons with PHB2's Versatile Unarmed Strike works fine.

Investment: 1 feat, 72,600 gpAlso, it's Gestalt. One of the few situations that mitigates the fact that Monks don't have an offense. At that point, though, you need to be balanced against a Warblade/PsyWar, Wizard/Factorum, Rogue/Barbarian, and similar builds. Gestalt is inherently broken(also awesome and fun), and useful power level is far higher than standard.

Lycar
2009-06-03, 03:04 PM
I actually normally take studded leather, prefering in this case to run with a fairly high dex build for early play. However, technically, while starting gold is low, EWL for first level is 1k, which means that within that first level of play, you are intended to acquire 1000 gold worth of treasure.

Which means that you ditch the scale mail/studded leather as soon as you can afford chain mail. Sure.

The point is: There are situations where a so-called 'sub-optimal' choice is still quite viable.

Like the monk in low-level play.


I'm sorry, you just... Look. I'm sorry I've ever brought this up, but I feel like I'm being basically personally attacked, and have through-out this thread, largely due to my points being repeatedly ignored.

Sorry, nothing personal, but I can not really feel much sympathy for these 'class x suxx' discussions where the only level that ever gets discussed at any length is 20. Like this is the default level where all games ever take place. Which they don't.

It gets old fast. It is not helping. It feels a lot like people feeling smug about tossing around their math.

Fact is: Not being able to use iterative attacks on a round in which you move is irrelevant as long as you do not have any iterative attacks to worry about.

Monks can't flurry when they move. Neither can any TWF use his off-hand attacks. That puts the monk into the same boat as the TWF-rogue or the TWF-ranger.

Damage-wise, they do about as good as a ranger. Rogues have an advantage in sneak attack.

Monks hurt for AC, on the other hand they have an advantage in mobility. They suffer a hit on to-hit compared to STR-based fighting classes (MAD is a bitch here) but on the other hand, they have better saves.

Shock Trooper builds are cited for massive power-attack damage. This feat is not available before level 6. Extra damage from Power Attack is limited by BAB and so on.

The monk may be a weak class. In high level play. It is perfectly viable in low level play.

Maybe some of you people should try a single-digit level game sometime. Then you can see for yourself.

Lycar

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 03:12 PM
I have a level 12 build that does 5k damage a turn.
A level 10 build that punches out 8d4 negative levels twice a turn.
A level 6 build that does around 60 damage a turn, and will be allowed in any campaign.

I'm not discussing level 20. I'm discussing level four and up.
I do, have, and will play monks below that level. After that I PrC out.

You know why I'm so vehement? Because I loved second edition monks.
And I love third edition monks. By which I mean I love unarmed swordsages.
Monks are playable, they just aren't fun at all in a party with normal needs unless the GM burns a lot of effort giving you a leg up. I'm willing to do that, as a GM, by calling unarmed swordsages monks.

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 03:14 PM
gloves of ghost fighting from MIC
necklace of natural weapons with ghost touch (the first one's better though)

Ooh, nice catch on the gloves. Price point?

The necklace is really quite expensive, I know that.

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 03:16 PM
Sorry, nothing personal, but I can not really feel much sympathy for these 'class x suxx' discussions where the only level that ever gets discussed at any length is 20. Like this is the default level where all games ever take place. Which they don't.

...

Maybe some of you people should try a single-digit level game sometime. Then you can see for yourself.

Lycar

This actually sounds EXACTLY like a personal attack.

Nohwl
2009-06-03, 03:18 PM
can you pm me the level 12 and 10 builds?

Sstoopidtallkid
2009-06-03, 03:30 PM
Which means that you ditch the scale mail/studded leather as soon as you can afford chain mail. Sure.

The point is: There are situations where a so-called 'sub-optimal' choice is still quite viable.

Like the monk in low-level play.Make a 5th level Monk. I'll make a 5th level Animal Companion. As in, I'll make 1 of the Druid's 3 class features. We can compare their abilities.
Sorry, nothing personal, but I can not really feel much sympathy for these 'class x suxx' discussions where the only level that ever gets discussed at any length is 20. Like this is the default level where all games ever take place. Which they don't.

It gets old fast. It is not helping. It feels a lot like people feeling smug about tossing around their math.I have been discussing levels 1-15. Levels after those are dead to me. Monk's are still weaker than similar classes at 1st level.
Fact is: Not being able to use iterative attacks on a round in which you move is irrelevant as long as you do not have any iterative attacks to worry about.

Monks can't flurry when they move. Neither can any TWF use his off-hand attacks. That puts the monk into the same boat as the TWF-rogue or the TWF-ranger.Which is considered a crippling weakness of TWF. Look at the thread fixing them, adding an extra attack on a standard is considered vital to keeping them alive.
Monks hurt for AC, on the other hand they have an advantage in mobility.No they don't. Rogues get more and better movement-based skills, and any speed-boost is wasted on the Monk but makes any other class just as fast or faster.
They suffer a hit on to-hit compared to STR-based fighting classes (MAD is a bitch here) but on the other hand, they have better saves. But if you lack offense, who will bother targetting you at all, especially targetting saves when you have low AC?
Shock Trooper builds are cited for massive power-attack damage. This feat is not available before level 6. Extra damage from Power Attack is limited by BAB and so on. And how much damage are you doing at level 5, again? Rogue at level 5 deals 4d6+5+some damage. Per hit. You deal...base damage+piddly Str. not even a Magic Weapon. At least the Barb has Rage and high Str to add to his 2d6.
The monk may be a weak class. In high level play. It is perfectly viable in low level play.

Maybe some of you people should try a single-digit level game sometime. Then you can see for yourself.

LycarI just played a level 1 game. Don't assume.

ChaosDefender24
2009-06-03, 03:30 PM
Ooh, nice catch on the gloves. Price point?

The necklace is really quite expensive, I know that.

It's only 4000 gp! If you're having a hard time finding it in the book, it's in the anti-undead series of items towards the back of the book, not the clothes part.

The necklace of natural weapons from SS costs a few hundred gp, and the enchantments are no more expensive than normal weapon enchantments. Maybe you confused it with amulet of mighty fists?

Gorbash
2009-06-03, 03:32 PM
Sorry, nothing personal, but I can not really feel much sympathy for these 'class x suxx' discussions where the only level that ever gets discussed at any length is 20. Like this is the default level where all games ever take place. Which they don't.

That's where you're wrong. When people discuss builds, they usually assume the character will go through lvls 1-20 and that build may or may not be effective at all levels.

But when they discuss classes, they discuss it over all levels. For example, we discussed 1v1 battle of a Monk and Wizard on level 1.

Another example is discussing Wizard's exponential rise to power, starting from lvl 5.

And why would they discuss it on levels 1-5? Not to mention that not every campaign starts at level 1. Campaigns I played in usually start on level 3-5.


That puts the monk into the same boat as the TWF-rogue

Really? Monks have +XD6 SA?

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 03:33 PM
Oh yeah! Savage species. Such a good book.
I wish it had gotten an update...

Goatman_Ted
2009-06-03, 03:37 PM
It is perfectly viable in low level play.

Maybe some of you people should try a single-digit level game sometime. Then you can see for yourself.
It's fine until you hit 3rd level. In some cases it's great until you hit 3rd level.

But that's where the Monk class ends.

That's when Psychic Warrior/Rogue/Swordsage/Warblade levels become the clear choice for most characters.
The fluff doesn't even change for those four.

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 03:52 PM
No one cares, Ted, and it upsets me.

Lycar
2009-06-03, 04:23 PM
This actually sounds EXACTLY like a personal attack.

Well sorry then, was not meant as one. But it is so very obnoxious when the people who tell of their actual gaming experience get shouted down for 'not playing the game right'.

But hey, did you ever see a monk played in a low elvel game? If so, what were your observations? Did he indeed fail to adequatly shine? Was his performance situational? If so, what facters made him shine or suck?


Make a 5th level Monk. I'll make a 5th level Animal Companion. As in, I'll make 1 of the Druid's 3 class features. We can compare their abilities.

And then we try the same thing with a 5th lv fighter, barbarian, rogue and ranger. And get roughly similar results. The barbarian will fare well due to rage, fighter may stand a chance due to high AC, ranger will have trouble. Rogue will need Improved Feint without a flank buddy. Otherwise his sneak attack isn't going to do him much good. Also: Few hitpoints.

Which only goes to show that the druid is powerful. What else is new?



I have been discussing levels 1-15. Levels after those are dead to me. Monk's are still weaker than similar classes at 1st level.

....

Which is considered a crippling weakness of TWF. Look at the thread fixing them, adding an extra attack on a standard is considered vital to keeping them alive.

Yes. Every TWF. Not just a monk who intends to flurry. So why should rangers and rogues get preferential treatment here? Why are they so terrible strong at first level compared to a monk? They drift apart the more levels you climb, indeed, but at 1st level?



No they don't. Rogues get more and better movement-based skills, and any speed-boost is wasted on the Monk but makes any other class just as fast or faster.

Wasted? Just because the monk has a built-in enhancement bonus to speed? And what movement skills would that be? Monks have tumble too you know.



But if you lack offense, who will bother targetting you at all, especially targetting saves when you have low AC? And how much damage are you doing at level 5, again? Rogue at level 5 deals 4d6+5+some damage. Per hit. You deal...base damage+piddly Str. not even a Magic Weapon. At least the Barb has Rage and high Str to add to his 2d6. I just played a level 1 game. Don't assume.

A rogue deals his sneak attack damage only when flanking or feinting. And not against anything immune to sneak attack damage. There are alternate class features that help but they don't appear until lv 4 and didn't even exist prior to PHB II. Or MiC for that matter. And since when do we have the Craven feat again?

Rangers get what? A weak animal companion and a few low-level divine spells. Barbarians get a good boost with rage. Once per day. Twice at lv. 4.

Fighters could pull about even with the barbarian at these levels with the Wpn. Focus/Spec. feats. Which are, however, regarded as unworthy of existing. Oh well.

And how should any character force any enemy to attack him anyway?

They had to invent the knight for that. Or the Goad feat, which is regarded as a poor feat.

The fact is, the game is called Dungeons & Dragons for a reason: The iconic adventure is the dungeon crawl. Where frontliners protect their allies simply by blocking off that 10' corridor by virtue of being there.

Fight in an open space? Well tough. Guess that explains why real-live VIPs often have enough bodyguards to fill all squares around them. :smallwink:

But that is not the failure of the monk. It is the failure of the people who somehow expect a mundane character (everything but wizard, sorceror and druid practically) to somehow, magically be able to prevent stuff from going around them.

If you really expect enemies to be smart, then the only real rule is: Geek the mage first. Period. Then mop up the melee guys. No Übercharger will change that.

But hey, that is why mages have battlefield control spells. They better use them. And wow, suddenly the fighty types have bottlenecks they can stop up again. Could this be *gasp* teamwork!?!

Lycar

Goatman_Ted
2009-06-03, 04:37 PM
Yes. Every TWF. Not just a monk who intends to flurry. So why should rangers and rogues get preferential treatment here?
Because despite being mediocre in combat they have abilities that make them valuable to a group out of combat. (Rangers less so, but at least tracking isn't a common ability elsewhere.)

And as to how Barbarians et al get enemies to attack them, that's done through reach, trip, stand still, high strength and packing the ability to kill the enemy in a matter of rounds if they are ignored.

Also, yes. Teamwork is a very good thing. That is why I am concerned that the Monk is not a team player.

Jayabalard
2009-06-03, 04:45 PM
I have a level 12 build that does 5k damage a turn.
A level 10 build that punches out 8d4 negative levels twice a turn.
Well, that makes the disconnect between you and the people you're arguing against pretty obvious; it sounds like you are only willing to play at a certain power level, and monks don't make the cut. You should keep in mind that a great many people don't have any interest in that sort of play style, so your opinions and experiences are simply not relevant to them.


A level 6 build that does around 60 damage a turn, and will be allowed in any campaign.Any isn't the correct word; I'm sure there are campaigns that character would not be allowed in; there are also campaigns where that wouldn't be particularity useful.


All classes are equal from a roleplaying perspectiveI can't agree there; some classes are absolutely terrible from a RP perspective.


That only leaves mechanics to discuss, and the Monk is mechanically worse.I personally don't see that as that cut and dry. The monk is what's in the party, so it doesn't really matter how it compares to playing some other class instead.


Oh wait, they would still be able to pick any class, they just wouldn't drag down teammates who do care about mechanics.If you have that situation, it's purely a player issue; it has nothing to do with the characters, or even the game system that you're playing. You just have a group of people that don't have a compatible play style.


Jaybalard's sole contribution to any attempt to improve anything is, "But guys, improving things is bad for the universe. You should not ever improve anything!"Not at all; the point is that they are only improvements for some people, and you can't assume that everyone is going to agree with your opinions on what makes the game good.

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 04:52 PM
You are now on my ignore list, as I appear to be on yours.

Tokiko Mima
2009-06-03, 04:53 PM
Liking the Monk class in 3.5 D&D is like being a fan of B-movies. Those movies will have both have their good points and a lot more bad points. No one could ever argue that B-movies are the best movies ever, but they might very well be your most favorite movies. You can like movies that aren't good. Just realize that just because you like a movie, that doesn't make it any good.:smallwink:

Monks have plenty of Flavor. Despite all it's clunkiness and weakness in general people still love to play it. In my last campaign I found out another player was going to be a Monk and I begged him not to do it. "Use Unarmed Swordsage" I said, "It's the same flavor but it gives you something to do that's useful." He refused, saying he really loves Monk even though it sucks. Honestly? That's absolutely fine. If you want to roll a monk knowing it's mechanically weaker than most classes at what it does, then more power to you, I say.

It just gives me a lot of chances to crack jokes about how much Monks stink. :smalltongue:

Lycar
2009-06-03, 04:57 PM
Because despite being mediocre in combat they have abilities that make them valuable to a group out of combat. (Rangers less so, but at least tracking isn't a common ability elsewhere.)

And according to some people, rogue gets replaced by a Wand of Knock. :smallamused:

And who needs to track when you can divine. Pop goes the ranger. :smallfrown:


And as to how Barbarians et al get enemies to attack them, that's done through reach, trip, stand still, high strength and packing the ability to kill the enemy in a matter of rounds if they are ignored.

As the Spiked Chain tripper... Yeah that, only that one has to remember that moving through a threatened space only draws 1 (!) AoO for the entire move. Soo... while a SCT can, let's say, engage 4 or so enemies, having a chance to trip each of them, he can't stop the 5th. Or fail to stop any of the first 4. Which then end their charge with a death from above attack on whatever chain boy was supposed to protect. Or they were monks, in that case they only do 'piddling' damage of course. :smallamused:

Oh and what if the opposing party also has a caster type and Hold Persons your barb? Yeah well, barbarians suck obviously... but then again, so do fighters. And rangers for that matter. All low will save classes.


Also, yes. Teamwork is a very good thing. That is why I am concerned that the Monk is not a team player.

You know what I am concerned about? That people who try to tell other people that they can't play their characters because they suck aren't teamplayers. :smallannoyed:

Monks are a weak class. They still work at low levels. Or else, just play a party of all mages/druids. There, nobody has to play the healbot now. Or the meatshield. Just all batmen. That will be a fun game. For the player(s) that wanted to play caster types anyway (maybe, maybe not. He's not 'special' anymore after all...).

But hey, numbers don't lie, one cannot have fun with a monk/fighter/xxxx at high levels. It has been mathematically proven. So if you still enjoy playing, you are obviously doing it wrong.

But that all boils down to basically two different playstyles: Those who prefer roleplaying, numbers be damned and those who love numbers (roleplaying optional). And never shall the two come together. It just doesn't work.

Lycar

Jayabalard
2009-06-03, 05:04 PM
But that all boils down to basically two different playstyles: Those who prefer roleplaying, numbers be damned and those who love numbers (roleplaying optional). And never shall the two come together. It just doesn't work. I really don't think roleplaying has anything to do with it; some people love to fiddle with numbers, and some people could care less.

Some of the people who really like numbers also like to roleplay, and some of them don't. Some of the people who don't care about the numbers are hard core roleplayers, and some of them just want a simple game to enjoy while they drink beer and eat pizza. There's nothing wrong with any of the styles in and of themselves (though certainly people may have a preference for one or the other)


No one could ever argue that B-movies are the best movies ever, You should meet more Bruce Campbell fans :smalltongue:


You are now on my ignore list, as I appear to be on yours.I'm not sure what you're talking about; I just replied to your posts, so you can't possibly be on my ignore list. :smallamused:

FMArthur
2009-06-03, 05:19 PM
These threads have always been a little confusing to me. Everyone is arguing about an entirely different thing most of the time, usually with someone who is arguing about something else. Some are talking about the power level relative to other classes. Some are talking about its effects on roleplaying and whether it has an effect on roleplaying. Others still are arguing that other people are arguing that they can't have have fun with an underpowered class.

Is the central argument "should I play a monk" or is it "can I play a monk" or is it "what is bad about the monk"?

Guancyto
2009-06-03, 05:56 PM
Is the central argument "should I play a monk" or is it "can I play a monk" or is it "what is bad about the monk"?

"What is bad about the monk," was the original question, which has been gone over in loving detail. It's unfortunate that there seems to be the idea floating around that you have to be a frothing-at-the-mouth powergamer to say "this is what is bad about the monk."

Goatman_Ted
2009-06-03, 05:57 PM
Monks are a weak class.

Wasn't that the question? I think that was the question.

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 06:00 PM
"What is bad about the monk," was the original question, which has been gone over in loving detail. It's unfortunate that there seems to be the idea floating around that you have to be a frothing-at-the-mouth powergamer to say "this is what is bad about the monk."

That... Yes. Thank you.
Nail head, meet hammer.
Hammer, meet nail head.

Tokiko Mima
2009-06-03, 06:02 PM
You should meet more Bruce Campbell fans :smalltongue:

Hey, I'm a fan of his too. I am not going to make the argument that he makes the best movies. He just makes movies that resonate well with his fans, and that a lot of people enjoy. You could consider that a job well done, but Bruce is just never going to win the Oscar that I as a fan would like to see him receive.


These threads have always been a little confusing to me. Everyone is arguing about an entirely different thing most of the time, usually with someone who is arguing about something else. Some are talking about the power level relative to other classes. Some are talking about its effects on roleplaying and whether it has an effect on roleplaying. Others still are arguing that other people are arguing that they can't have have fun with an underpowered class.

Is the central argument "should I play a monk" or is it "can I play a monk" or is it "what is bad about the monk"?

This thread's structure is essentially like two children arguing back and forth about whether their imaginary guns hit before time out was called. Each of the angles you've given have been explored already, and reasonable/unreasonable people have already made up their minds pages ago. Now it's just noise back and forth as everyone tries for a memorable soundbite on the Monk's suck riff, or neo-absurdist 'Monk's are the best evah!' counterpoint.

I wish I knew why Monks Suck/Paladin Alignment/Batman wizard/3E vs. 4E threads did this massive expansion. Like a bowl of petunias falling, it might explain a great deal about the nature of the universe.

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 06:06 PM
"Oh not again."

It just pains me to come across as such a zealot. I worry a lot about how I am perceived and I am fairly certain I have cemented my reputation as a stupid-power-gamer largely accidentally.

Goatman_Ted
2009-06-03, 06:07 PM
I wish I knew why Monks Suck/Paladin Alignment/Batman wizard/3E vs. 4E threads did this massive expansion. Like a bowl of petunias falling, it might explain a great deal about the nature of the universe.

I think the real question is whether or not we can get all of those into the same thread.

Maybe tossing in some ToB balance arguments for seasoning.

We can sticky it and merge anything that overlaps it into one giant flaming tar pit (of Doom!)

It will be epic!

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 06:09 PM
That... Is an incredible idea. I wish the mods would actually do that.

mostlyharmful
2009-06-03, 06:19 PM
Ah you young'uns... you'll learn... why I remember back in ought'three when there was a Monk guide thread by that wacky guy that sounds foreighn.....

Oh the flamings, oh the trollings... oh the hideous bannings that culled our ranks. Why this is a ladies tea party by comparisson.... and I lived to tell of it.

So look on the bright side.... at least what ever happens here... no-ones going to change their minds!!!!!:smallbiggrin:

ChaosDefender24
2009-06-03, 06:21 PM
Yeah, I'm pretty shocked that the monk defenders haven't brought up the partially charged wands yet.

Ixahinon
2009-06-03, 06:23 PM
A big thank you to the guy that pointed out that some people play games for reasons other than the numbers, that's the point I was trying to get at all along, just went about it the incredably wrong way, and threw more numbers at the problem.

In an RP heavy, Low optimized, balanced character world. Monks can be very useful to the party for the people that like playing these games. Many people enjoy playing the aspect of a monk, and don't really give two ****s about their damage output, or their BAB and what not. It also happens that in these games, being sub-par doesn't mean you will never hit. The RP heavy game I am playing now features ECL encounters with creatures that you'd still see at 2nd or 3rd level in optimized games...and still make it challanging for the party.

I play this way, and I love it...I won't say I hate horribly inbalanced 'optimize the **** out of your character' games, cause I don't...I just suck horribly at it...I haven't memorized every splat book and every feat out there to do it. Hell...I don't even know half of the Prestiges...read a post about a Green Star Adept...what is that?

I think we can all agree here that in one of those power games, which is usually considered the 'normal' game, Monks aren't gonna make the grade.

I like the Chainshirt vs. Scalemail arguement. 1) your character is not gonna pick up a card next to the chainshirt at the armor shop that reads 'This armor gives you +4 to your Dexterity bonus, and is considered Light Armor! While It's lesser counterpart, Scale Mail only offers a mere +3 Dexterity bonus, and is Medium Armor. Buy now!' Instead, your character should be wearing what s/he grew up with, or is comfortable with. 2) Well....there isn't a two, I guess...I was gonna say 'your character is gonna be wearing what they trained with' but I kinda covered that in 1).

Monk vs. Everything else is pretty much like that.

Problem solved. Those that hate Monk, still hate monk. Those that Like it, still like it. No progress was made, save for possibly a few feelings hurt. Let's all just go home now.

mostlyharmful
2009-06-03, 06:23 PM
Yeah, I'm pretty shocked that the monk defenders haven't brought up the partially charged wands yet.

Speak not their vile name lest the gods of moderation be called in.... Pre-emptive strike with exteme prejudice... only way to deal with partially charged wands, or masterwork tools of every skill.

ChaosDefender24
2009-06-03, 06:25 PM
Looks like not even the mods can handle the wrath of eversmoking bottles.

mostlyharmful
2009-06-03, 06:27 PM
well crap... I'd almost forgotton the waste of time and thought that was arguing against that one. Thank you for the reminder, it will keep me all warm and alive tonight with seething rage at the willful ignorance the human race so delights in indulging in.

chiasaur11
2009-06-03, 06:30 PM
Ah you young'uns... you'll learn... why I remember back in ought'three when there was a Monk guide thread by that wacky guy that sounds foreighn.....

Oh the flamings, oh the trollings... oh the hideous bannings that culled our ranks. Why this is a ladies tea party by comparisson.... and I lived to tell of it.

So look on the bright side.... at least what ever happens here... no-ones going to change their minds!!!!!:smallbiggrin:

No need to brag. Decent amount of people came out of that one alive.

Wasn't like the Smedly Hawkings incident...

mostlyharmful
2009-06-03, 06:33 PM
No need to brag. Decent amount of people came out of that one alive.

Wasn't like the Smedly Hawkings incident...

how many of them posted on the first page?

P.S. well done on spectacularly missing the point.

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 06:39 PM
Permission to seal the thread as best I can before someone rolls a monk's guide out of it to giacomo to shame? ;)

Aneantir
2009-06-03, 06:43 PM
Permission to seal the thread as best I can before someone rolls a monk's guide out of it to giacomo to shame? ;)

My god, man! Do not speak the name of He Who Buys Partially Charged Wands!! I saw a post of his just last week, and I thank the heavens that he did not see or post in this thread, for if he got his hands on another Monk thread, we could expect only disaster.

Doc Roc
2009-06-03, 06:48 PM
http://h1.ripway.com/DrRocktopus/1194984914309460086elder_sign_nurbldoff_01r.svg.me d.png
NOT THE BEES. (http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?t=1165515)

chiasaur11
2009-06-03, 06:50 PM
how many of them posted on the first page?

P.S. well done on spectacularly missing the point.

A majority, oddly enough.

A generally nasty incident no one would like to see repeated, but no-one...

but I said too much already.

GreatWyrmGold
2009-06-03, 08:35 PM
:: snaps ::
That's it, we're leaving.
You've repeatedly ignored my posts because they are simply inconvenient to you. This is not a discussion, this is a miserable soapbox. Can we talk about this seriously? Or are you going to keep ignoring me?

No, I've "repeatedly ignored your posts" because I've missed this thread a couple days. Not everyone on this forum needs to get a life. Some of us do this for fun only.


Your attack bonus is +25... You have a 50% chance to miss even the lowest AC opponents on that level, and most will just Fast Heal for more than that each turn. If you stood up to it, you could flurry for 5-6 (when using Boots of Speed or under Haste or whatever) such attacks and be dishing out 120 damage (provided all hit).

Now, how does Spring Attack help your party again, other than cutting your (already weak) damage output to ~1/4th (accounting for To Hit)? You're actually doing less for your party when Spring Attacking. Sure, you might be slightly safer yourself (although as you can only move 45' to a direction and magical buffs don't improve that, you'll still be in the attack range of almost anything), but you aren't protecting your allies in any ways, nor dealing meaningful damage, nor really doing anything else.

Okay, first off, the only CR 20 creature I know of that has Fast Healing/Regeneration 20+ is the tarrasque, which has an underestimated CR in my opinion. Next, yeah, you can't full attack/flurry if Spring Attacking, but you also can't get hurt unless your opponent has a ranged weapon (usually weaker than melee ones), a huge movement rate, and/or insane reach.


Stuff about wraiths/shadows by Tidesingerer
With Amulets of Mighty Fists and a not-stone-hearted DM, you can duplicate anything a fighter can do to his sword for your fists. Yikes. Sorry I don't check my thread every day.

olentu
2009-06-03, 08:44 PM
Okay, first off, the only CR 20 creature I know of that has Fast Healing/Regeneration 20+ is the tarrasque, which has an underestimated CR in my opinion. Next, yeah, you can't full attack/flurry if Spring Attacking, but you also can't get hurt unless your opponent has a ranged weapon (usually weaker than melee ones), a huge movement rate, and/or insane reach.

An opponent can ready an action to hit you when you walk up to them unless your reach greatly exceeds the reach of the enemy. Presumably this would be done rather late in the battle as before this it is probably easier to kill some other character as a full attack action can possibly be used on them but in general one can not ready more then one attack.

Worira
2009-06-03, 08:45 PM
Or has a 30 ft. speed and can charge. Remember, you have to get in range and out. Also, you might want to cut it out with the personal attacks.

GreatWyrmGold
2009-06-03, 08:54 PM
To the guys above me: Yeah, one can charge or ready an action. The strategy's not perfect. Neither is the one most fighters use: Standing and getting beaten up by melee.
Sorry, I have time constraints on the computer. If I miss something, understand that I didn't read it yet, and don't assume I ignored it.

Nohwl
2009-06-03, 08:58 PM
fighters can return good amounts of damage. monks can't.

Eldariel
2009-06-03, 09:28 PM
I was hoping this thread were over. What do you need to be convinced of still?


Okay, first off, the only CR 20 creature I know of that has Fast Healing/Regeneration 20+ is the tarrasque, which has an underestimated CR in my opinion. Next, yeah, you can't full attack/flurry if Spring Attacking, but you also can't get hurt unless your opponent has a ranged weapon (usually weaker than melee ones), a huge movement rate, and/or insane reach.

Just about every creature in MM1 is capable of reaching you through spells, spell-likes, charge, move (especially flyers), ranged attack or any such. Also, readied attacks spoil your day, as does Grapple (better get that Ring of Freedom of Movement ASAP). This doesn't really protect you at all, except if you want the monster to hit the other party members.

Also, if your party members can't do the same, all you did was make yourself not the target leaving the weaker party members getting beat up. If you're the weaker party member, you're just replicating the others' ability to act at range with a heavy feat investment and total removal of your efficiency. Again, you can't deal relevant damage to CR 20 creatures (there's still DR 15 you can't bypass on the Outsiders, the Dragons have 250' fly speed, etc.) nor can you stop the CR 20 creatures from dealing relevant damage to you.

Same applies on level 10, frankly; another party member would help the rest of the party much more than a Monk, especially if the Monk is Spring Attacking and thus letting his allies take the hits and deal the damage while he goes in to nibble for miniscule damage few times per combat. Human Monk is dealing 1d10+8 (assuming +2 Amulet of Mighty Fists and Str 22+; +2 Quarterstaff would work out at about 1d6+11) or so damage at +16 to hit. A Human Barbarian is dealing 2d4+11 (assuming Mw. Guisarme, Str 24) at reach at +18/+13, 3 times per day Rage at +20/+15 for 2d4+14.

Power Attack for 3 for 2d4+19 at the same attack bonuses, or about 13 more per hit than the Monk at reach with all the associated tricks, has more HP and likely more AC too (and can protect his allies thanks to reach and weapon with Trip-ability along with eluding hits himself). Note that this is without magic weapons or any such; just Str, Str-booster and Mw. weapon (vs. Monk with his Amulet of Mighty Fists). And this is without actually doing anything at all with the Barbarian; he still has his WPL, feats, etc. to enhance his attacks with while the Monk already has a sizable chunk of his wealth spent on Str-booster and Amulet.

For what it's worth, this Barbarian deals more damage than full Flurry from the Monk too. Vs. AC 23 (say, Fire Giant), full Unarmed Flurry with the same stats (+2 Amulet, Str 22) does 24.09 damage, +2 Quarterstaff flurry does 25.88 (27.19 with PA -2). Barbarian's attack deals 32.81 at PA for 3. And note that the Barbarian is again bare-bones, while still having more strategic flexibility than the Monk due to having a reach weapon and being capable of tripping. Also, adding in Haste-effect for both (say, Boots of Speed), and a comparable weapon for the Barbarian (say, +1 Holy) and maybe a trip attack (-4 to opponent's AC; thanks to Barbarian's Str from Rage, it's very doable) or so, and the Barbarian comes out much more ahead - 84.03 at PA for -4 vs. AC 23, while Monk gets 70.06 provided he manages the Trip too, has Power Attack (66.70 without) and is using a Holy +1 Quarterstaff. And that's pretty much the basic Core Barbarian Tripper. You can use this (http://direpress.bin.sh/tools/power.html) calculator if you wanna play around with the numbers yourself. Barbarian is almost 20 points ahead of the Monk in damage, and this is assuming the Monk has managed to Trip the opponent even though he's got 3 points lower modifier than the Barbarian there.

And the same applies even on level 1. Why? Because level 1 Monk can't afford high enough stats to have good attack, good damage, good AC and good HP without crazy stat allocation (Human: 16 Str, 16 Dex, 16 Wis, 12 Con, 8 Int, 8 Cha means AC 16, +3 to hit, +1/+1 Flurry for 1d6+3 damage, or 1d6+4 with a Quarterstaff; compare with Barbarians 18 Str, 14 Dex, 14 Con, 8 rest and Scalemail giving him AC 16, +5 to hit for 2d6+6 damage with Greatsword, and that's when not raging - oh, and the Barbarian has 14 HP to the Monk's 9, leaving the Monk with his saves and not much else).

I'd also like to point out that on every level under 15, a Barbarian under Haste/Expeditious Retreat/whatever is moving as quickly or faster (for most of the time; on level 1 the Barbarian is faster than the Monk) than the Monk. This is because Monk's speed bonus is enhancement and doesn't stack with the spells.

Regarding the Tarrasque:
The Tarrasque is actually over-CRd; sure, melee-types can't really stand up to it easily, but it has no defense against flyers and weak defenses against spells. Dominate Monster works on it easily (with Spell Penetration + Greater Spell Penetration, beating its spell resistance is trivial), and you could just Gate in a Solar to kill it.

A simple Allip would drain (it's only immune to ability damage, not ability drain) it swiftly. Other than that, Boom Boom from long range is fully effective against it, and even Illusion-buffed melee works great. Mostly, it's just Monks that have extreme trouble doing anything against it. Other melee types can deal fine damage vs. it - they're unable to beat it on their own, but they're able to meaningfully contribute to beating it.


With Amulets of Mighty Fists and a not-stone-hearted DM, you can duplicate anything a fighter can do to his sword for your fists. Yikes. Sorry I don't check my thread every day.

Except it's way more expensive and takes your throat slot. And DMG specifically only allows numeric bonuses so your DM needs to houserule that part away, as you mentioned.

sofawall
2009-06-03, 10:49 PM
I can't agree there; some classes are absolutely terrible from a RP perspective..

Just like there are classes that are absolutely horrible from a mechanical perspective.

Also, name one class that sucks from a role-play perspective.


But that all boils down to basically two different playstyles: Those who prefer roleplaying, numbers be damned and those who love numbers (roleplaying optional). And never shall the two come together. It just doesn't work.

You can roleplay with big numbers, you know. In fact, purposefully choosing then weaker of two options "for flavor" is often bad roleplay. You're highly trained warriors whose lives depend on being bad-ass enough to kill the other guy before they die. If your life is on the line, why would you be a wizard with WF: Dagger instead of, say, empower spell?


No, I've "repeatedly ignored your posts" because I've missed this thread a couple days. Not everyone on this forum needs to get a life. Some of us do this for fun only.

Bzzt! Asshat alert!

Sstoopidtallkid
2009-06-04, 12:08 AM
I can't agree there; some classes are absolutely terrible from a RP perspective.Like the eastern ideal in my western fantasy RPG that apparently is supposed to be able to kill Dragons by punching them in the nose? RP is what you make of it, and non-debatable. Let's not try, 'kay?
And then we try the same thing with a 5th lv fighter, barbarian, rogue and ranger. And get roughly similar results. The barbarian will fare well due to rage, fighter may stand a chance due to high AC, ranger will have trouble. Rogue will need Improved Feint without a flank buddy. Otherwise his sneak attack isn't going to do him much good. Also: Few hitpoints.

Which only goes to show that the druid is powerful. What else is new?A Monk is the only one of those weaker than an Anmal Companion when well-built. All of them are severely weaker than a Druid, but the Monk is the only one regularly inferior to a class feature. I could also be superior to the Monk at the Monk's job as a Barb, Rogue, or Ranger, but I have more fun doing it with 1/4th WBL and a cat. Also, I'm not talking about an arena fight. I'm never talking about an arena fight. I'm talking AB, damage, AC, skills, maneuverability, saves, and similar stuff. Comparison of capability to aid the party, as in something that matters in actual play, not just who has better init.
Yes. Every TWF. Not just a monk who intends to flurry. So why should rangers and rogues get preferential treatment here? Why are they so terrible strong at first level compared to a monk? They drift apart the more levels you climb, indeed, but at 1st level? There's a reason TWF Rangers are considered weaker than(read: useless compared to) Archer ones. TWF Rogue can compensate by killing something if they ever do get a full-attack, and often by having a decent ranged ability as well(they get to SA and use something less sucky than Shuriken), but often TWF Rogues are overrated IMHO.
A rogue deals his sneak attack damage only when flanking or feinting.Or when Invisible. Or during the first round of combat. Or when the enemy is standing on marbles or Grease. And since Flanking is so often a good idea anyways(that +2 to-hit translates to 4 extra damage for the Fighter, for example), it's generally pretty common. Teamwork where your allies get benefits from helping you is not the same as Teamwork where your allies have to bend over backwards to accomadate you.
And not against anything immune to sneak attack damage. There are alternate class features that help but they don't appear until lv 4 and didn't even exist prior to PHB II. Or MiC for that matter. And since when do we have the Craven feat again? There are spells, magic items, and ACFs. A Rogue can almost always SA(how often do you fight Plants, after all)?
Rangers get what? A weak animal companion and a few low-level divine spells.Like the low-level Divine spell that doubles their damage on a charge? Of course, Rangers are generally ranked on the same level as a Monk in power without Swift Hunter, so the comparison is a little weak, since the thread is about weak Monks, not which other classes are just as unintentionally nerfed.
Barbarians get a good boost with rage. Once per day. Twice at lv. 4. 4 times with the Extra Rage feat, which is worthwhile at level 1-5. And honestly, how many 1st level characters make it to 10?
Fighters could pull about even with the barbarian at these levels with the Wpn. Focus/Spec. feats. Which are, however, regarded as unworthy of existing. Oh well. Some of the weakest feats around put them at better than the Monk. That says a lot.:smalltongue:
And how should any character force any enemy to attack him anyway?

They had to invent the knight for that. Or the Goad feat, which is regarded as a poor feat.Why do you think the Spiked Chain Tripper is regarded as so useful for many levels. If you have good defenses, you need a way to force the opponents to face you over your allies, or enough offense that they gain no more from attacking your allies than they do from attacking you. Stand Still makes them unable to retreat. It's the reason the Dwarven Defender sucks but the Knight rocks.
The fact is, the game is called Dungeons & Dragons for a reason: The iconic adventure is the dungeon crawl. Where frontliners protect their allies simply by blocking off that 10' corridor by virtue of being there. Actually, they don't. Yes, 2 frontliners can, assuming the enemy can't fly, Tumble, Burrow, or Teleport, but one Frontliner can do nothing to block a 10' wide area.
Fight in an open space? Well tough. Guess that explains why real-live VIPs often have enough bodyguards to fill all squares around them.

But that is not the failure of the monk. It is the failure of the people who somehow expect a mundane character (everything but wizard, sorceror and druid practically) to somehow, magically be able to prevent stuff from going around them. Some can, though. Monks, however, can't. The Spiked Chain Tripper forces people to stay near him while the squishies snipe from out of range. The Charger makes enemies want to be within 10' of him(to the point it's considered reasonable to spend a spell slot switching his position with the Rogues, allowing him to Charge and the Rogue to full attack). The Monk...yeah.

Kaiyanwang
2009-06-04, 04:41 AM
WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!!

Mistype!

I meant Monk 20 / Shintao Monk 20

My apologies Gorbash...:smallredface:

Another thing: my point is very clear in my previous post, but he was very good in another thing, very linked to the don't die thing: deflect things.

With the proper epic feats, he deflected even orb and disintegrate spells :smallsmile:

He was very imaginative, all the strange items like the magic glue were bringed to him, he found a way to make wonders.

I miss his monk a lot! Not so powerful but cool

Gorbash
2009-06-04, 04:58 AM
I meant Monk 20 / Shintao Monk 20

You can't really discuss the classes at level 40, D&D isn't really designed to be played at those levels and the system breaks down at some point.


With the proper epic feats, he deflected even orb and disintegrate spells

On epic levels, why would someone attack you with 4th-6th lvl spells? :smallconfused:

Kaiyanwang
2009-06-04, 05:14 AM
You can't really discuss the classes at level 40, D&D isn't really designed to be played at those levels and the system breaks down at some point.

This is true but IMHO, not for what you say. In short: I would say thateven assuming that the Monk has cool things to do at epic, should have more things before (reread my post, I didn't say "Monk is uber" I said "Monk is more playable than some people say").




On epic levels, why would someone attack you with 4th-6th lvl spells? :smallconfused:

Well, you can't assume that challenges are always at your level - you could face a dragon, a pit fiend, d3 abominations, 20 meleers and 20 casters in the same encounter (and this is true even at level 10, but people assume that 3.5 is 4 PC against a monster - can be this, but not only this).

More, you could face these spells, but outrageously "metamagized" so a 15 level slot, but still deflectable.

Obviously, if the mage is able to use 15 level spell slot, other casters of the Monk's party manage his other forms of attack and battlefield control, it's a team game.

Jayabalard
2009-06-04, 06:54 AM
Like the eastern ideal in my western fantasy RPG that apparently is supposed to be able to kill Dragons by punching them in the nose? Yup; I personally find that to be a great example. But there are other people out there who think it fits in fairly well.


RP is what you make of it, and non-debatable.Then stick to discussing it rather than debating it.


Now it's just noise back and forth as everyone tries for a memorable soundbite on the Monk's suck riff, or neo-absurdist 'Monk's are the best evah!' counterpoint.I don't think that characterizes this thread all that well; a decent portion of the people posting in this thread are much more moderate than that.


"What is bad about the monk," was the original questionIt was "why do people think the monk is underpowered?" which is a more general question... The former is more of a strictly mechanics question, but the latter really is looking more at the players/parties involved.

Lycar
2009-06-04, 07:23 AM
A Monk is the only one of those weaker than an Anmal Companion when well-built. All of them are severely weaker than a Druid, but the Monk is the only one regularly inferior to a class feature. I could also be superior to the Monk at the Monk's job as a Barb, Rogue, or Ranger, but I have more fun doing it with 1/4th WBL and a cat.

To be fair though, things like Trip and Disarm are pretty ineffective against animals. Can be good against humanoid opponents though. On the other hand, animals tend to have pretty low AC, which helps a monk make his flurry count.


Also, I'm not talking about an arena fight. I'm never talking about an arena fight. I'm talking AB, damage, AC, skills, maneuverability, saves, and similar stuff. Comparison of capability to aid the party, as in something that matters in actual play, not just who has better init.

He, sorry, no offense. it just seems to be the default assumption for most people on the internet to make these kinds of comparisons in a sterile lab arena environment.


There's a reason TWF Rangers are considered weaker than(read: useless compared to) Archer ones. TWF Rogue can compensate by killing something if they ever do get a full-attack, and often by having a decent ranged ability as well(they get to SA and use something less sucky than Shuriken), but often TWF Rogues are overrated IMHO.

What can you say... people love their daring, dashing TWFighting loveable rogues... or their Aragorn/Drizzt clones... :smallamused:

And some people want to play a Bruce lee clone. The system doesn't support it terribly well, but it is possible to a certain degree.


Or when Invisible. Or during the first round of combat. Or when the enemy is standing on marbles or Grease. And since Flanking is so often a good idea anyways(that +2 to-hit translates to 4 extra damage for the Fighter, for example), it's generally pretty common. Teamwork where your allies get benefits from helping you is not the same as Teamwork where your allies have to bend over backwards to accomadate you. There are spells, magic items, and ACFs. A Rogue can almost always SA(how often do you fight Plants, after all)?

And undead still ignore SA. Even on marbles/grease. Sure, a rogue who gets the drop on his enemies can be pretty devastating. Would you consider it 'softening up the enemy' if he SA-kills a foe or two before legging it back to his allies? You know, before Sir Clanksalot & Co ruin the surprise...

Besides, I always find it silly to assume that enemies would just stay in a greased/marbled square and fight if they could help it.

As for the teamwork: Yeah, it is widely accepted that a mage, who so much as wastes a single spell on helping their mundane allies overcome their lack of, say, flight, is 'bending over backwards' to accomodate those loot and XP mooching underachievers. How dare they demand treasure and XP if they can't be arsed to pull their weight ( read: be mages).

I personally find it much more offensive if players try to force other players to 'bend over backwards' and play something they consider 'worth playing', and not allow them to play what they want. If they play a mechanically weak class, they might want to change their mind later anyways. Or maybe they still like their character, even though he is not killing as much stuff as others.


Like the low-level Divine spell that doubles their damage on a charge? Of course, Rangers are generally ranked on the same level as a Monk in power without Swift Hunter, so the comparison is a little weak, since the thread is about weak Monks, not which other classes are just as unintentionally nerfed.

Jupp, Swift Hunter is ... availble since wehn? Oh right, since when the Scout appeared. Too bad the monk didn't get that kind of love in the splatbooks, eh?

Without splat, however, the two are almost on par on the lower levels.


4 times with the Extra Rage feat, which is worthwhile at level 1-5. And honestly, how many 1st level characters make it to 10?

Well, back in school when I still played P&P with friends, we regularly played from lv 1 on (even though we always complained to our DM that we didn't like how squishy we were until lv 3 or 4 or so :smallwink:) and often reached at least lv. 6. Our longest-running campaign went to lv 17.

Extra Rage is a great feat for a barbarian. As is Extra Music for a bard or Extra Turning... It is just so that few, if any higher level 'builds' I encounter on these (or other) boards do have it. Apparently they retrained it first chance they got after reaching 3 or 4 regular rages per day.

Because, god knows, any DM who forces his players to have more (or less) then 4 encounters a day isn't playing the game right. :smallyuk:

But yes, your stereotypical half-orc barbarian with Power Attack and Extra Rage is a solid fighter type at level 5.


Some of the weakest feats around put them at better than the Monk. That says a lot.:smalltongue:

Indeed. :smallannoyed:

Now imagine you are in a 'core only' game and Wpn. Spec. is the only thing to boost your damage... :smalleek:

It is a good thing that splat books gave warrior types ways to boost their damage output. Nowadays people no longer have to complain about a lack of damage from their warrior types. They focus on the 'can't do anything but damage' issue. Which, of course, the monk also suffers from. Because, let's face it, his mystical abilities are more colourfull then usefull. Sad.

But again, at low levels, this isn't really an issue.


Why do you think the Spiked Chain Tripper is regarded as so useful for many levels. If you have good defenses, you need a way to force the opponents to face you over your allies, or enough offense that they gain no more from attacking your allies than they do from attacking you. Stand Still makes them unable to retreat. It's the reason the Dwarven Defender sucks but the Knight rocks.

Spikey can make the most of tripping. He is not the be-all end-all to the battlefield control woes of non-mages though. But that is a problem between spellcasters <-> everybody else, not a monk-specific problem.

And down in their underground homes, I dare say a pair of dwarven defenders blocking a 10' corridor are better then 2 knights doing the same. :smallamused:


Actually, they don't. Yes, 2 frontliners can, assuming the enemy can't fly, Tumble, Burrow, or Teleport, but one Frontliner can do nothing to block a 10' wide area. Some can, though. Monks, however, can't. The Spiked Chain Tripper forces people to stay near him while the squishies snipe from out of range. The Charger makes enemies want to be within 10' of him(to the point it's considered reasonable to spend a spell slot switching his position with the Rogues, allowing him to Charge and the Rogue to full attack). The Monk...yeah.

Few enemies who want to eat your casters can fly to begin with. The larger ones are hampered in a 10' high corridor, although one could argue that they really can't be blocked by people on the gorund effectivly. But that is even mor of a problem outside, now isnit it. Same goes for burrowing creatures for that matter.

Tumbling or squeezing past works... provided there is a space behind the frontliners the attacker can tumble or sueeze into. Else he has to get past the 2nd line guys too... way to draw a lot of AoO but hey, this might actually give your palyers a lot to worry about. Makes for a challenging encounter, eh?

The Tripper can hope to keep people tripped, but it only takes 1 (!) failed trip attempt and an enemy is past them. They are a nice and fun way of messing with enemy warrior types but they are not indefatigable.

Also, in a confined space, they don't have that much of an advantage over a trip monk. Who can also use a spiked chain if he insists on spending a feat on it.

The charger just makes people to want him to
a) Be tripped before he gets to make his charge attack.
b) Fall into the cleverly hidden pit trap.
c) Fall on his behind in the lamp-oiled square.
d) Fail his Will save against whatever their own caster can whip up.

All these people do some thing well or very well but aren't that good outside what they are built for.

The monk's problem is that he doesn't really have anything he does really well. Except, maybe, stay alive. This doesn't have to be a problem though. And it isn't at these low levels where chargers and trippers and what not still have not quite achieved their 'level of competence'.

Personally I believe that the best compromise for people who like the old monk, but wish their character to be 'considered relevant' at higher levels too, is to start as a monk and then 'prestige class' into swordsage.

There, I said it, ToB to the rescue. :smallwink:

But then again, a warblade is a terriffic 'prestige class' for a fighter too.

They still don't do anyhting new, mind, but they do the old things flashier. Thats something, isn't it. :smalltongue:

Lycar

Kurald Galain
2009-06-04, 07:25 AM
To be fair though, things like Trip and Disarm are pretty ineffective against animals.
To be fair, things like Trip and Disarm are pretty ineffective most of the time anyway, just like grappling. They just aren't good enough strategies to warrant spending a lot of feats on.


And undead still ignore SA. Even on marbles/grease.
There are several common methods for rogues to SA undead.

quick_comment
2009-06-04, 07:36 AM
Well, you can't assume that challenges are always at your level - you could face a dragon, a pit fiend, d3 abominations, 20 meleers and 20 casters in the same encounter (and this is true even at level 10, but people assume that 3.5 is 4 PC against a monster - can be this, but not only this).


Wow, so an epic monk can kill a bunch of low level wizards. Thats fearsome.

mostlyharmful
2009-06-04, 07:38 AM
Wow, so an epic monk can kill a bunch of low level wizards. Thats fearsome.

He didn't say that. Just that they can bounce those ray effects back on them so long as he knows they're coming and has a spare hand.... pity there's a deflect ray spell that's so easy to get hold of....

By 40th level I'd expect a whole lot more than this. He's used multiple epic feats to just about mimic a 4th level spell.....

Lycar
2009-06-04, 07:40 AM
To be fair, things like Trip and Disarm are pretty ineffective most of the time anyway, just like grappling. They just aren't good enough strategies to warrant spending a lot of feats on.

I think the Spiked Chain Tripper build enthusiasts will beg to differ on that. :smalltongue:


There are several common methods for rogues to SA undead.

Since when? Oh right, since the invention of certain ACFs and magic items.

See, there are people who ask why other people think that monks 'aren't really that bad'.

They really were not that bad, back when all you had was the (un)holy trinity of PHB, DMG and MM1.

Since then, things have drifted apart. A lot. Spellcasters always were overpowered, no change there, but warriors and skill monkeys got a lot of boosts.

Monk? Not so much. And then came ToB and since then you are considered excentric when you don't substitute unarmed sword sage for monk. :smallamused:

Lycar

mostlyharmful
2009-06-04, 07:45 AM
I think the Spiked Chain Tripper build enthusiasts will beg to differ on that. :smalltongue:

Those one's that build to a concept not to a class so when they want to trip they coose a class with full BAB with more feats or class features that synergize, SAD str and a two handed reach weapon and multiple AoO? Those one's you mean?:smalltongue:

Kaiyanwang
2009-06-04, 08:03 AM
Wow, so an epic monk can kill a bunch of low level wizards. Thats fearsome.

Did you read the whole post? I said that what monk has is not enough. If it's not clear, my apologies.

Said this, consider that caster level and challenge rating don't always go along the same way.

Example? Most Dragons.

ZeroNumerous
2009-06-04, 08:04 AM
Since when? Oh right, since the invention of certain ACFs and magic items.

Since the DMG allows me to build custom magic items. The most broken splat books are in Core after all.

quick_comment
2009-06-04, 08:41 AM
Did you read the whole post? I said that what monk has is not enough. If it's not clear, my apologies.

Said this, consider that caster level and challenge rating don't always go along the same way.

Example? Most Dragons.

An epic monk can fight dragons? How are you getting off the ground to chase them?

Barbarian MD
2009-06-04, 08:44 AM
My 21-level monk beat a Solar by itself the other day (Wounding on his punches), and I believe he's about to beat a 21-level Lich (who's getting disarmed of all his fancy magic items while being pinned--the Ring of Ineffable Evil almost got him, but once I started ripping off magic items, my butt was saved). High reflex saves are amazing at epic levels.

So I have no complaints about my monk's power... Granted, he's been given full BAB by the DM, but that was the only modification that was applicable to the Lich fight.

Kaiyanwang
2009-06-04, 09:02 AM
An epic monk can fight dragons? How are you getting off the ground to chase them?

An Epic Group can challenge a Dragon. And the Monk belongs to the group.

It's difficult to understand, or you are just taunting me :smallamused:?

Kaiyanwang
2009-06-04, 09:03 AM
My 21-level monk beat a Solar by itself the other day (Wounding on his punches), and I believe he's about to beat a 21-level Lich (who's getting disarmed of all his fancy magic items while being pinned--the Ring of Ineffable Evil almost got him, but once I started ripping off magic items, my butt was saved). High reflex saves are amazing at epic levels.

So I have no complaints about my monk's power... Granted, he's been given full BAB by the DM, but that was the only modification that was applicable to the Lich fight.

See, it depends from the spell the solar and the Lich were using. In my experience, a properly used solar it's almost unbeatable.

And Full AB, it's a lot for an improvement...

mostlyharmful
2009-06-04, 09:05 AM
My 21-level monk beat a Solar by itself the other day (Wounding on his punches), and I believe he's about to beat a 21-level Lich (who's getting disarmed of all his fancy magic items while being pinned--the Ring of Ineffable Evil almost got him, but once I started ripping off magic items, my butt was saved). High reflex saves are amazing at epic levels.

Let me guess. This Solar with 20th level Casting, a paragraph of SLAs (including Wish) and infinite automatic slaying arrows just walked up to your Monk and started slugging away right?

How did you get around the 'I wish you to the negative energy plane' part of the fight? Or the 'oh, I'm losing so maybe I should fly away for a round or two faster than this guy can follow, completely heal myself, coat myself in buffs, summon a dozen minions and then plunck him with half a dozen slaying arrows' part?

I'm not even going to touch the 21st level caster bit.

Optimystik
2009-06-04, 09:09 AM
My 21-level monk beat a Solar by itself the other day (Wounding on his punches), and I believe he's about to beat a 21-level Lich (who's getting disarmed of all his fancy magic items while being pinned--the Ring of Ineffable Evil almost got him, but once I started ripping off magic items, my butt was saved). High reflex saves are amazing at epic levels.

So I have no complaints about my monk's power... Granted, he's been given full BAB by the DM, but that was the only modification that was applicable to the Lich fight.

"Only modification that was applicable?" How many "modifications" did your monk get?

*snip*

"My DM altered the rules to make my monk work" does not equal "monks are fine." That's like saying:

"My Chevy can easily keep up with any Ferrari! All I have to do is swap out the engine, transmission, tires, manifolds, gasket, and fuel injection."

Kurald Galain
2009-06-04, 09:11 AM
"My DM altered the rules to make my monk work" does not equal "monks are fine."

In other words, the Oberoni Fallacy. It's amazing how often that one comes up in threads like this... :smallbiggrin:

Barbarian MD
2009-06-04, 09:15 AM
What I'm saying is that, in the Lich fight, the full BAB didn't matter. His grapple and disarm were so far above the Lich's that it would have been the same outcome without the full BAB.

Slaying arrows are no match for my "Infinite Deflection".

But you'll also notice that I tossed in the words my monk. I totally understand that the monk, left as-is, has trouble keeping up. But it's so much fun to take a Lich's staff, rod, and then magic items away from him, and then punch him in the face. :smallbiggrin: I enjoy the role-play aspect of playing, and it's enjoyable to thwart an enemy like that.

EDIT:

I'm going to type this slowly, though you might not be able to tell.


Dude, no need to be rude.

EDIT EDIT:
For anyone wondering, we're waiting for selections to be made on the epic game that's recruiting on the boards, so we're DMing arena exhibition matches between ourselves.

EDIT EDIT EDIT:
I wasn't trying to get into an argument here. I wanted to toss in a comment that didn't involve flaming someone, and to express that I personally enjoy it.

Eldariel
2009-06-04, 10:00 AM
My 21-level monk beat a Solar by itself the other day (Wounding on his punches), and I believe he's about to beat a 21-level Lich (who's getting disarmed of all his fancy magic items while being pinned--the Ring of Ineffable Evil almost got him, but once I started ripping off magic items, my butt was saved). High reflex saves are amazing at epic levels.

So I have no complaints about my monk's power... Granted, he's been given full BAB by the DM, but that was the only modification that was applicable to the Lich fight.

It's awesome if you like it, but chances are, those monsters aren't being played up to their power. Because the Solar could easily buff himself with even his given spell list to just go smackdown in melee; Righteous Might, Divine Favor, Miracle mimicking e.g. Bite of the Werebear or Giant Size, Magic Vestment (which should be on all day anyways) and then come to melee with the ~+60 attacks, AC in the mid 40s et al. (of course, if it tried, it could easily get AC 70 or so - like if it used any of the treasure it's got) His flight-speed buys him infinite turns; he can just cast Heal if he takes some damage.

Or just cast Control Winds to create a Tornado and wait for you to fail the Fort-save. Offensive spells are pretty useless on epic due to everything being immune, and I'd imagine a Solar would know that. It also has a free Wish to use (those are pretty powerful; it can replicate just about any spell in the game), which could be used for buffing if it's bored or something more useful if it's not.


As for the Lich, if it's is getting Grappled, it's doing something wrong. Why didn't he just cast a Greater Shadow Evocation mimicking Forcecage (80% chance to work even if you make the Will-save) on you the first turn? Or heck, why didn't his Contingency Dimension Door fire when about to be grappled? Or why not take a standard action to Dimension Door away from Grapple before the Pin? Or why not cast Limited Wish mimicking Freedom of Movement if it's that big a problem? Or you're using out-of-core spells, Heart of Air is an hour/level buff that enables Freedom of Movement.


All the glory to you for beating a Solar and a Lich with a Monk. That's truly stuff of the legends. However, that hardly speaks volumes of Monk's power on near-epic levels. If you're beating such opponents alone, chances are the opponents aren't being played up to their full potential.

If a Solar who finds out that its arrows are being deflected, maybe it would opt to buff up and enter melee instead? It has the feats, it has the spells, it's perfectly capable of bringing the smackdown, and it has the tools to not be hit before it wants to fight. They certainly have the Int to make basic associations like this. And the Lich...yeah, I can't imagine how any self-respecting Lich ever gets grappled. Like killed, that I could see, but grappled - that's just his own stupidity. And your average Wizard Lich has an Int in the high 30s; stupidity doesn't seem to fit the picture there.


Now, this thread is about Monk's power or the lack of it, and I don't think this anecdote really helps any. Although a full BAB Monk can be semi-decent vs. other melee types on higher levels.

Optimystik
2009-06-04, 10:02 AM
Dude, no need to be rude.

I apologize, I meant you wouldn't be able to tell I was typing slowly because you can't see me typing; it wasn't intended to be a remark about your intelligence in any way. I'll edit that out.


What I'm saying is that, in the Lich fight, the full BAB didn't matter. His grapple and disarm were so far above the Lich's that it would have been the same outcome without the full BAB.

Dimension Door has no somatic component. What kind of epic lich doesn't know that, or contingency, or flight, etc?


Slaying arrows are no match for my "Infinite Deflection".

But you'll also notice that I tossed in the words my monk. I totally understand that the monk, left as-is, has trouble keeping up. But it's so much fun to take a Lich's staff, rod, and then magic items away from him, and then punch him in the face. :smallbiggrin: I enjoy the role-play aspect of playing, and it's enjoyable to thwart an enemy like that.

That's the part I don't understand. When your DM runs encounters like that (where monsters don't make any realistic use of the abilities available to them) then the only person roleplaying is you.

To me, true roleplay would involve a monster making use of his best tricks. He is fighting for his life, after all (or unlife, in this case); for him to take it easy is very poor roleplay.

Barbarian MD
2009-06-04, 10:16 AM
It was another player DMing the Solar. These are arena matches, so no pre-buff time, and my monk's got wings. In the first round, my monk can begin to hit the Solar and deal wounding damage.

Was he played well? Probably not.

The lich's contingency was on his staff/phlactery, so that when I stole it, it teleported back to his lair. He never imagined that I'd grapple him in order to cast a contingency. His staff gave him the ability to swap his spells out, so once that was gone, he lost a lot of his options. Monk's got abundant step, so I could get out of a force cage. He tried to wall me in, but my wings allowed me to just fly up and over the top.


But, yes, agreed--my anecdote contributes nothing to the conversation about "monks do/don't suck". But the original post (if I remember right) was more about why people enjoy playing them, and I enjoy playing this one because it's not the standard: I hit you as hard as I can every turn with no variation. That kind of melee is just getting boring to me. I wanted to spice things up, and the monk was a good way to do that.

Eldariel
2009-06-04, 11:05 AM
But, yes, agreed--my anecdote contributes nothing to the conversation about "monks do/don't suck". But the original post (if I remember right) was more about why people enjoy playing them, and I enjoy playing this one because it's not the standard: I hit you as hard as I can every turn with no variation. That kind of melee is just getting boring to me. I wanted to spice things up, and the monk was a good way to do that.

Heh, this is precisely the reasoning so many love using Tome of Battle in melee; instead of one attack, you've got ~4 - 20 different options along with a bunch of stances to modify your position in combat.

As for Abundant Step, it's 1/day. Force Cage can be Greater Shadow Evocationed for free a dozen times per day.

Tiki Snakes
2009-06-04, 11:11 AM
It was another player DMing the Solar. These are arena matches, so no pre-buff time, and my monk's got wings. In the first round, my monk can begin to hit the Solar and deal wounding damage.

Was he played well? Probably not.

The lich's contingency was on his staff/phlactery, so that when I stole it, it teleported back to his lair. He never imagined that I'd grapple him in order to cast a contingency. His staff gave him the ability to swap his spells out, so once that was gone, he lost a lot of his options. Monk's got abundant step, so I could get out of a force cage. He tried to wall me in, but my wings allowed me to just fly up and over the top.


But, yes, agreed--my anecdote contributes nothing to the conversation about "monks do/don't suck". But the original post (if I remember right) was more about why people enjoy playing them, and I enjoy playing this one because it's not the standard: I hit you as hard as I can every turn with no variation. That kind of melee is just getting boring to me. I wanted to spice things up, and the monk was a good way to do that.

Well played, really. Course, objectively, the Wings really do make a difference. What race is your monk, anyway?

Barbarian MD
2009-06-04, 11:42 AM
In the battle with the Solar, he was simply an elf with a set of magical wings. Since that battle (and my realization that a dispel would be particularly bad), he's now got a half-celestial template.

Oh, I should also point out that dealing Constitution damage was the only way my monk managed against the Solar with his DR and Fast Healing. Flurrying like crazy brought him to 0 Con in just a few rounds, while his HP never really took a hit.

I really do need to invest in ToB. Everyone in the recruiting pool that has a martial character has some sort of stance or manuever, and I've never even played with such before.

Eldariel
2009-06-04, 11:58 AM
That's the thing I'm wondering about: Solars have Greater Dispel Magic at will as a spell-like that it apparently never used (it could just Dispel all your magic items while the dancing sword hacks at you...), and they have at least one Mass Heal automatically prepared (along with both, Miracle and Wish being able to replicate Heal), 3/day Heal and 1/day Greater Restoration; getting rid of the Con-damage should be trivial before they get hit by 20 points of it (they can remove all of it at least 7 times with their expected spell allotment). Oh, and 150' fly speed.

And they should have something like 210000 treasure (CR 23), which is quite the bunch of equipment. Like, even just Monk's Belt, stat boosters, Greater Cloak of Displacement, Rings of Deflection and such would put the AC in the mid 60s, along with 50% miss chance and the ability to maintain distance while they're buffing. Hell, as their Sword is Dancing, they can let the Sword dance (and thus attack) while buffing with Divine Favor, Righteous Might, Magic Vestment (although it lasts whole day and thus should be active at all times), and whatever spells they choose to mimic.

Barbarian MD
2009-06-04, 12:07 PM
I admitted he probably wasn't played well. :smalltongue:

He buffed the first round, second round tried to hit with a spell that I dodged, and then went invisible (got an intelligent item that gives true seeing). Tried something else that wasn't effective before that. The player thought that if the Solar could go invisible, he could buff all he wanted, and wasn't prepared for the true seeing. I think about that time was when I got my first stunning fist that he didn't save against. Once he was stunned, I kept up the pressure.

But...he wasn't played well, and by the time he got his act together, it was too late.

Sstoopidtallkid
2009-06-04, 12:34 PM
To be fair though, things like Trip and Disarm are pretty ineffective against animals. Can be good against humanoid opponents though. On the other hand, animals tend to have pretty low AC, which helps a monk make his flurry count. They're also weak against Aberrations, Dragons, Oozes, and a half-dozen other types of monsters. Besides, at low levels, Animals are a pretty common encounter.
And some people want to play a Bruce lee clone. The system doesn't support it terribly well, but it is possible to a certain degree.But there are ways of doing it without the Monk class at all. USS is most obvious. If you have to use Monk, you can follow the primary rule of Monk optimization(the best Monk is the one with the fewest levels in the Monk class) and go PsyWar 18/Monk 2.
And undead still ignore SA. Even on marbles/grease. Sure, a rogue who gets the drop on his enemies can be pretty devastating. Would you consider it 'softening up the enemy' if he SA-kills a foe or two before legging it back to his allies? You know, before Sir Clanksalot & Co ruin the surprise...Yes, but that's generally not that possible. If there's one enemy, you don't want to be in melee with him, since he likely can kill you quickly. You're exppected to have backup and allies while fighting him, and your damage isn't going to be effective(due to 1 HP leaving you just as capable as 1000). If it's a group, you can reduce it's damage output, but at the same time, they can keep you from leaving by surrrounding you and AoOs. The only way to pull that off is ranged attacks which...the Monk doesn't get.
Besides, I always find it silly to assume that enemies would just stay in a greased/marbled square and fight if they could help it.But most of the time they can't help it. The combination of skill checks they have trouble making and AoOs means that a lot of times it's better for them to stand there and trade full-attacks than it is for them to move and risk dropping prone.
As for the teamwork: Yeah, it is widely accepted that a mage, who so much as wastes a single spell on helping their mundane allies overcome their lack of, say, flight, is 'bending over backwards' to accomodate those loot and XP mooching underachievers. How dare they demand treasure and XP if they can't be arsed to pull their weight ( read: be mages).

I personally find it much more offensive if players try to force other players to 'bend over backwards' and play something they consider 'worth playing', and not allow them to play what they want. If they play a mechanically weak class, they might want to change their mind later anyways. Or maybe they still like their character, even though he is not killing as much stuff as others.Characters should be able to operate without depending on other characters investing resources on their behalf. Not due to a hatred of teamwork on my part, just due to the fact that some people can't make it to every session. You should be able to pull your own weight. Then helping each other out makes you even better. Notie what things the Rogue wants? Either to give someone else +2 AB, or the Mage to drop a certain save-or-suck. Both of those are reasonable. GMW/MV are reasonable when you've passed level 8 or so. Multiple in-combat buffs are not.
Jupp, Swift Hunter is ... availble since wehn? Oh right, since when the Scout appeared. Too bad the monk didn't get that kind of love in the splatbooks, eh?

Without splat, however, the two are almost on par on the lower levels.If you're talking core-only, then the Monk has most of the options that make him vaguely decent eliminated. Greater Mighty Wallop, Necklace of Natural Attacks, you end up nerfed further. Core-only, the only classes that are worth it end up being Barb, Rogue, Druid, Cleric, Wizard, Sorcerer. Monk, Bard, and Ranger sit in the corner and cry.
Well, back in school when I still played P&P with friends, we regularly played from lv 1 on (even though we always complained to our DM that we didn't like how squishy we were until lv 3 or 4 or so :smallwink:) and often reached at least lv. 6. Our longest-running campaign went to lv 17.And how many of your characters survived to level 10 from level 5? A boss fight is supposed to have a 50% chance of you being routed and possibly a TPK.
Extra Rage is a great feat for a barbarian. As is Extra Music for a bard or Extra Turning... It is just so that few, if any higher level 'builds' I encounter on these (or other) boards do have it. Apparently they retrained it first chance they got after reaching 3 or 4 regular rages per day. Actually, the only one of those that is worth it is Extra Rage. Extra Music is made worthless by level 3-4, and Turning is so rarely used that it doesn't matter much(also, the number of those doesn't scale by level). But yes, retraining, or just the assmuption you're starting above level 1. I do so every chance I get, as do a lot of people.
Because, god knows, any DM who forces his players to have more (or less) then 4 encounters a day isn't playing the game right. :smallyuk:No, but balancing them requires more work. Less than 4 encounters allows the Casters to Nova. More than 4 means that now the Cleric is out of healing and the Fighter and Rogue are risking death. It's balancable, but needs more work.
Spikey can make the most of tripping. He is not the be-all end-all to the battlefield control woes of non-mages though. But that is a problem between spellcasters <-> everybody else, not a monk-specific problem.But the Fighter has Battlefield Control that is effective in several situations. The Monk...doesn't.
And down in their underground homes, I dare say a pair of dwarven defenders blocking a 10' corridor are better then 2 knights doing the same. :smallamused:And I'd say the Knights are better, due to being able to block enemies with other movement modes, more HP, block side tunnels at the same time, and the ability to stop ranged attacks. Not to mention the fact that underground is not the only place encounters happen.
The Tripper can hope to keep people tripped, but it only takes 1 (!) failed trip attempt and an enemy is past them. They are a nice and fun way of messing with enemy warrior types but they are not indefatigable.Which is why the current trip builds use Thicket of Blades, Stand Still, Knockdown, or similar effects to make sure the enemy doesn't move.
Also, in a confined space, they don't have that much of an advantage over a trip monk. Who can also use a spiked chain if he insists on spending a feat on it. But can he use a reach wepon without the feat? Underground, the Tripper can keep enemies out of range of hitting him while pounding them.
The charger just makes people to want him to
a) Be tripped before he gets to make his charge attack.
b) Fall into the cleverly hidden pit trap.
c) Fall on his behind in the lamp-oiled square.
d) Fail his Will save against whatever their own caster can whip up.

All these people do some thing well or very well but aren't that good outside what they are built for.Which is the problem of melee as a whole. You still haven't answered what the Monk can do at all. These things have one good tactic. The Monk, IMHO, has none. That's why the class is viewed as a waste of space.
The monk's problem is that he doesn't really have anything he does really well. Except, maybe, stay alive. This doesn't have to be a problem though. And it isn't at these low levels where chargers and trippers and what not still have not quite achieved their 'level of competence'.At low levels they're still massive damage machines with better AB and damage than you.
Personally I believe that the best compromise for people who like the old monk, but wish their character to be 'considered relevant' at higher levels too, is to start as a monk and then 'prestige class' into swordsage.

There, I said it, ToB to the rescue. :smallwink:

But then again, a warblade is a terriffic 'prestige class' for a fighter too. Which is why I use ToB extensively. Why take levels of Monk at all? USS is strctly better at any level, with the same fluff, more in-combat options, better offenses, and less stuff that makes no sense.

Eldariel
2009-06-04, 12:47 PM
I think the Spiked Chain Tripper build enthusiasts will beg to differ on that. :smalltongue:

Yeah, Tripping is the one specific exception to that due to how brutal the consequences of being tripped are, and how many creatures can reasonably be tripped, especially by Str-focused Barbarian (for example). Disarm though, in few campaigns, but few campaigns only.


Since when? Oh right, since the invention of certain ACFs and magic items.

Core Rogues default to UMD when they can't Sneak Attack. Hell, half the class's power is having tons of skill points and UMD on the class skill list. Indeed, while Rogue isn't a glass cannon vs. Undead, he can still Wand that CL 7 Wand of Scorching Ray, or Grease, or some Illusions or Fogs or Searing Ray or whatever anti-Undead stuff you happen to have. But yeah, it's unfortunate that WoTC didn't give Rogues the means to SA crit immunes in Core on higher levels; that really makes them a swingy class.

Kaiyanwang
2009-06-04, 12:52 PM
Why take levels of Monk at all? USS is strctly better at any level, with the same fluff, more in-combat options, better offenses, and less stuff that makes no sense.

Bonus feats of the firsts levels are not so bad. Maybe you want to avoid MAD ness with combat expertise, as an example.

or few stunning more used with Snapkick. Something like this.

Eldariel
2009-06-04, 01:07 PM
Bonus feats of the firsts levels are not so bad. Maybe you want to avoid MAD ness with combat expertise, ad an example.

or few stunning more used with Snapkick. Something like this.

Also, you get Flurry which can be a decent option. I'm all for getting one-two levels of Monk to pick up Evasion early, pump Fort-saves, the feats, flurry and so on (given fractional BAB; otherwise you'd have to pick up 4 levels which kinda sucks).

Then take 10 levels of Shadow Sun Ninja and you can argue you'd have full 2 extra attacks from Flurry (SSN advances Flurry, but doesn't spell out granting Greater Flurry). It's certainly handy with the Tiger Claw-maneuvers, Desert Wind boosts, Time Stands Still and so on.

Duke of URL
2009-06-04, 01:14 PM
I'm generally fond of Monks as a concept, but the problem, as has been stated multiple times, is that it doesn't do what it's designed to do very well.

The designers likely thought that Monks looked too powerful at 1st level, and so wanted to reduce their chances of supplanting straight-up combat roles by reducing their HP and BAB. I don't think they really considered MAD, either.

But I digress... the purpose of a Monk... namely, the Monk is supposed to be a mage-killer.

Think about it -- high speed to bypass front lines, high saves all around plus bonuses to Will saves, special attacks focusing on weak Fort saves, (improved) evasion, and eventually spell resistance. What's all of that intended to do? Take out Wizards and Sorcerers, of course. (Never mind that it can't touch CoDzilla.)

Thing is, it doesn't do it very well, and less so as the levels get higher. By the time the Monk gets SR, casters have ways to attenuate or bypass SR anyway. High saves are offset by no-save spells. That Stunning Fist might work nicely if the Monk could actually hit the caster.

Splatbooks merely make the problems worse, giving casters more and more options, defensive and offensive, to make a Monk's life difficult, while not providing anything to offset the fact that a Monk gets progressively worse as levels get higher -- more so than a fighter, who is slightly less MAD. And then ToB introduced unarmed Swordsage, which essentially out-Monks the Monk, with more options.

A Monk is still a reasonable choice for a low-level game, and it works well in gestalt, to boost saves and gain a few feats and passive abilities. But it loses relative power faster than any of the other melee classes.

Jayabalard
2009-06-04, 01:30 PM
"My DM altered the rules to make my monk work" does not equal "monks are fine." That's not really what he's claiming; he's just saying that he doesn't have any complaints.


"My Chevy can easily keep up with any Ferrari! All I have to do is swap out the engine, transmission, tires, manifolds, gasket, and fuel injection."That's really just not a good comparison... doing those things doesn't involve breaking or changing any rules.

Optimystik
2009-06-04, 02:01 PM
That's not really what he's claiming; he's just saying that he doesn't have any complaints.

And I don't have a problem with that, except he's posting that anecdote in a "why do people say monks are broken?" thread. Therefore I treat it as a counterargument, and respond in kind.


That's really just not a good comparison... doing those things doesn't involve breaking or changing any rules.

The rules in question are those of the monk class, not the game itself. The game is perfectly able to accommodate flying characters that can grapple and pummel liches into submission; calling those characters "monks" is the claim I take issue with.

Even if I leave the logo on it, swapping out all the parts (or even the most important ones) in my Chevy Malibu for those of a Formula One racer means that it isn't really a Chevy Malibu any longer. Mechanically, that is what his DM did by giving his monk full BAB, Ex Flight, etc.

Jayabalard
2009-06-04, 02:09 PM
And I don't have a problem with that, except he's posting that anecdote in a "why do people say monks are broken?" thread. Therefore I treat it as a counterargument, and respond in kind.He didn't post it in an argumentative style at all; so he's quite obviously treating the thread as a discussion rather than a debate.


Even if I leave the logo on it, swapping out all the parts (or even the most important ones) in my Chevy Malibu for those of a Formula One racer means that it isn't really a Chevy Malibu any longer. Mechanically, that is what his DM did by giving his monk full BAB, Ex Flight, etc.I find it quite likely that according to the DMV, it's still legally a Chevy Malibu according to the RAW.

Sir Giacomo
2009-06-04, 04:17 PM
Ahem...:smallwink:

I have the feeling that my guide was brought up occasionally here (although not in a flattering manner). For those interested it is in my sig.

Basically, almost everything to be answered for the OP or questions brought up has been answered in that guide plus thread already (no need to read the near 70 pages, just the guide and the in-thread links I provided are enough).

It's funny that this thread (already also up to a respectable 12 pages) celebrates the anniversary of the joker monk thread by bringing up the same old monk fallacies all over again. I guess the monk class is the big groundhog day equivalent for D&D 3.5.

Maybe some highlights
1. At level 1, a wizard gets killed by almost everything. There is no way to talk around that. To phantasise that a wizard somehow stands a chance against a class that gets a touch attack doing 1d6+STR as a BONUS FEAT at that level is quite amusing (remember, grapple will haunt the wizard until he somehow gets his hand on stilled/silenced spells by mid-levels - something I hardly see in typical wizard builds- or a ring of freedom of movement around lvl 16).

2. A solar fighting a level 20 pc monk with full wbl equipment similarly has a huge problem. Fort +18 against a maxed stunning first monk? Don't make me laugh. And that is just core. Outside core vs a maxed level 20 monk it stands no chance. Add to which the slaying arrows are almost a non-issue against a strong-fort-save class that might also have deflect arrows a a bonus feat.
Excepting some anti-monk maxing done to the solar, said solar also simply could get tripped first and then grappled against a typical melee focused monk. The solar might then flee by using its special abilities. Maybe. There are non-core monk builds that I have seen which do routinely 200+ damage to AC 40 opponent as a standard action attack, pluss adding all kinds of save-or-suck/dies on top of that attack.

3. I have seen the stupid "monk? better play a swordsage" comment so often already, and sometimes by the same people who'd go against explicit FAQ rulings on some of the monk abilities, while expecting an abundance of houseruling from their DM for their unarmed swordsage builds.
Remember: all the ToB says on the subject of an unarmed swordsage is just one freakin sentence, saying "replace light armour proficiency with monk unarmed strike progression".
Sadly, that would leave the swordsage focused on unarmed quite hosed, in particular at low levels, since, say, an elf swordsage first had to take improved unarmed strike at level 1 to be any good, and then light armour proficiency to get the WIS bonus to AC. And that is only just part of the problems.

4. Please stop with that monk MAD myth. I mean it.
It has been disproven enough. Just look at the bonus feats without requirements. Just imagine a monk putting all point buy into STR. Or all characters with 0 point buying (8s in all stats before racial adjustments). Monk still gets all his special abiltiies. Casters can't do a thing. Fighters cannot carry their heavy armour and weapons.

That's enough for now, I guess

- Giacomo

Doc Roc
2009-06-04, 04:19 PM
{Scrubbed}


If this is ban worthy, I wish to be banned.

Sstoopidtallkid
2009-06-04, 04:23 PM
One thing, Giacomo: I never compare Monks to Wizards. I compare them to Druids. I doubt there's a single situation where Monks are superior to Druids that isn't horribly contrived. All 3s in starting stats, continent-wide AMF, level 1, enemy gets surprise, I'd bet on the Druid.

Doc Roc
2009-06-04, 04:32 PM
[scrub a dub dub]
I'mma be sensibles.

quick_comment
2009-06-04, 04:32 PM
Can we lock this thread already?

Monks suck, but not as much as samurai, commoners or truenamers. End of story.

The only way for a monk to deal good damage is to be dropped from orbit by a wizard.

Sir Giacomo
2009-06-04, 04:32 PM
One thing, Giacomo: I never compare Monks to Wizards. I compare them to Druids. I doubt there's a single situation where Monks are superior to Druids that isn't horribly contrived. All 3s in starting stats, continent-wide AMF, level 1, enemy gets surprise, I'd bet on the Druid.

:smallconfused:Er...why?

- Giacomo

Optimystik
2009-06-04, 04:35 PM
He didn't post it in an argumentative style at all; so he's quite obviously treating the thread as a discussion rather than a debate.

If that is the case, then his anecdote adds nothing to the discussion. The topic of the thread was not "what modifications have you made to your monk to make it playable?"


I find it quite likely that according to the DMV, it's still legally a Chevy Malibu according to the RAW.

Remind me not to go up against you in a box car derby. :smalltongue:
As long as the label matches, it doesn't matter what's under the hood... gotcha.

Aneantir
2009-06-04, 04:36 PM
Oh. My. God. He's back. Alright, everyone out of the Monk thread, it's all over. This is going to get very out of hand very quickly, and do not say I didn't warn everyone about this. Get out while you still can before the first round of bannings commences.

Sstoopidtallkid
2009-06-04, 04:37 PM
:smallconfused:Er...why?

- GiacomoPet dog. see, this is why I hate the 10 character limit

Sir Giacomo
2009-06-04, 04:40 PM
The only way for a monk to deal good damage is to be dropped from orbit by a wizard.

Ah...size stacking for damage...so obvious to me...so confusing for others...:smallsmile:

- Giacomo

PS: actually, when falling near wall, the monk might cause damage by falling deliberately on opponents...DM's call I guess (it is called SLOW fall, after all, although it happens instantaneously...):smallwink:

Sir Giacomo
2009-06-04, 04:42 PM
Pet dog.

Which is miraculously not surprised? And which is not even a "pet" dog anymore the moment the druid gets killed?

I thought you were going for druid wearing armour and shield and thus with better AC flat-footed...:smallbiggrin:

Anyhow, I guess an AMF world with 3s in all stats is not exactly the standard campaign...

- Giacomo

Jayabalard
2009-06-04, 04:45 PM
If that is the case, then his anecdote adds nothing to the discussion. The topic of the thread was not "what modifications have you made to your monk to make it playable?"Lots of people are discussing that; since that list of people includes OP, and since the OP started off the thread by pointing out his own anecdotal evidence, I'd have to say that it appears to be on-topic by definition.


Remind me not to go up against you in a box car derby. :smalltongue:
As long as the label matches, it doesn't matter what's under the hood... gotcha.Box car derby would be different; they have fairly specific rules, so adding an engine would be against the RAW.

Eldariel
2009-06-04, 04:54 PM
Giacomo, is this truly necessary? You're a smart guy, you can figure all this out for yourself.


Maybe some highlights
1. At level 1, a wizard gets killed by almost everything. There is no way to talk around that. To phantasise that a wizard somehow stands a chance against a class that gets a touch attack doing 1d6+STR as a BONUS FEAT at that level is quite amusing (remember, grapple will haunt the wizard until he somehow gets his hand on stilled/silenced spells by mid-levels - something I hardly see in typical wizard builds- or a ring of freedom of movement around lvl 16).

Wizard can say 4 times per day "50/50, you die" to high save classes and and an almost autokill on low save types. Sure, a wizard is fragile, but he also packs more potent offense than any other class on that level. Also, grapple requires reaching the Wizard (who gets Overland Flight on 9) and Dimension Door (level 7) is Verbal-only free ticket out of grapple; as you can only grapple a Wizard on the first turn of grapple, there's no way to stop him from casting it.

In a party, a Wizard can allow the level 1 party to win encounters it would otherwise have no chance against (basically any big brute, say a couple of Ogres or some such; melee has no chance but a Wizard has the power to save the party) while the Monk deals 1d6+3 or so damage at +3 (touch + grapple-check or normal attack) vs. Fighter/Barbarian dealing 2d6+4-9 (Orc Barbarian can go as high as 2d6+12 at +9 to attack; thrice per day with Extra Rage from Complete Warrior).


2. A solar fighting a level 20 pc monk with full wbl equipment similarly has a huge problem. Fort +18 against a maxed stunning first monk? Don't make me laugh. And that is just core. Outside core vs a maxed level 20 monk it stands no chance. Add to which the slaying arrows are almost a non-issue against a strong-fort-save class that might also have deflect arrows a a bonus feat.
Excepting some anti-monk maxing done to the solar, said solar also simply could get tripped first and then grappled against a typical melee focused monk. The solar might then flee by using its special abilities. Maybe. There are non-core monk builds that I have seen which do routinely 200+ damage to AC 40 opponent as a standard action attack, pluss adding all kinds of save-or-suck/dies on top of that attack.

You need to reach an opponent with 150' Good fly. That can't happen unless you somehow surprise it. Also, if the Solar has spells on, it'll easily have AC 60 (Magic Vestment on cloth, Monk's Belt, stat boosters or Magic Vestment on armor + animated shield), Fort-save goes to +25-27 with items (Monk maxes out at 34 Wis in Core, giving him DC 10+12+10+2 = 34 Fort save DC with Ability Focus meaning it's under 50% even if you hit), and that's if the Monk somehow reaches the Solar and hits (which, let's face it, isn't gonna happen; to get that high Stunning Fist DC, you need to dump all ability bumps to Wis leaving you with max of 29 Str, and that's with an 18 to start with meaning you've got 2 18s already, again something that's not gonna happen; and even with 29 in Str, a Monk only has +29 to hit from 15 BAB, +9 Str, +5 weapon meaning he only hits on natural 20s). Let's not waste any more time on this.

Monk may be fast, but Solar is still much, much faster and has natural flight. And Monk's fortitude-saves don't matter; you'll fail one eventually as it has infinite shots. Also, the damage adds up over time. Monk can fly with items, but not as fast and the Solar can simply Dispel Monk's flight any number of times.


3. I have seen the stupid "monk? better play a swordsage" comment so often already, and sometimes by the same people who'd go against explicit FAQ rulings on some of the monk abilities, while expecting an abundance of houseruling from their DM for their unarmed swordsage builds.
Remember: all the ToB says on the subject of an unarmed swordsage is just one freakin sentence, saying "replace light armour proficiency with monk unarmed strike progression".
Sadly, that would leave the swordsage focused on unarmed quite hosed, in particular at low levels, since, say, an elf swordsage first had to take improved unarmed strike at level 1 to be any good, and then light armour proficiency to get the WIS bonus to AC. And that is only just part of the problems.

It's pretty much implied that UA Swordsage recieves Monk's "Unarmed Strike"-ability. If not, whooppedoo, dip two levels of Monk and continue with Unarmed Swordsage levels. But really, Unarmed Swordsage is so universally embraced specifically because it is what Monk was supposed to be. It does everything you'd expect out of your mystical martial artist.


4. Please stop with that monk MAD myth. I mean it.
It has been disproven enough. Just look at the bonus feats without requirements. Just imagine a monk putting all point buy into STR. Or all characters with 0 point buying (8s in all stats before racial adjustments). Monk still gets all his special abiltiies. Casters can't do a thing. Fighters cannot carry their heavy armour and weapons.

You can pick the feats, but what good does that do for you if your bonuses are still negative, your AC is 9, etc.? Nobody cares which class works better with all 8s (out of core, Druid btw 'cause your Animal Companion is still at full power and you'll get Wildshape soon enough; a Riding Dog is a much better addition to a party than an all-8s Monk, and the Druid can just pick a Tower Shield and hide behind it for his life).

Let's discuss the point: Monk is MAD. You need Dex and Wis for AC (you need 16 in both to match a Dex 14 Fighter or Barbarian with a Scalemail, and they'll quickly get better armor in Breastplate/Full-Plate and eventually Mithril-versions while you won't improve your AC before you get stat boosters), Str to hit and damage (especially since you have medium BAB, you definitely need 18 in your attack stat to hit), Con for HP (you have d8 HD as a frontliner, so you'll want 16+ to match Fighter) and Int if you want to make good out of your skill list. Oh, and Charisma if you want to Use Magic Device.

Monk with the usual caster-spread of 18-14-14 (28pb) can get +4 to attack and 1d6+6 damage (by doublewielding a Quarterstaff) and AC 14. 7 hitpoints first level, 3.5 more per level. A Fighter with those can get +5 to attack, AC 16, 12 HP to start with and 7.5 per level. Monk has better Will-saves. But that won't stop him from dying a horrible pummely doom before Will-saves become an issue. Alternatively, you could have 16 AC and +2 to attacks. Or 10 HP and AC 12. You need to drop the 18 in Str to 16 and get 14 Con, in which case you lose any semblance of decent attack you had.

You need 4 high stats unless you burn your feats to compare to other characters with 3 high stats, and 5 to push your advantage. And Weapon Finesse would mean you won't deal damage without ToB and a bunch of levels (in which case a Swordsage does everything better). If you have Book of Exalted Deeds and pick up Intuitive Attack, you can indeed do decently with Stunning Fist, but you won't deal damage. And at that point, the only thing you can do is target Fort-saves a few times per day (once at level 1).


So yeah, 4 stats in Str/Dex/Con/Wis vs. other characters' 3. That's the problem. That's why Monk is MAD. The feats have nothing to do with it. Show me a 3-stat level 1 Monk that matches a simple level 1 Fighter or Barbarian in standard combat.

Aneantir
2009-06-04, 05:04 PM
Giacomo, is this truly necessary? You're a smart guy, you can figure all this out for yourself.

I have no doubt in his intelligence.... But no, he cannot figure these things out for himself. He's stubborn, and he refuses to even believe his side of the argument has even a hint of weakness.

He will not figure it out because he does not WANT to realize that the monk class is subpar. I say, let him have his dream world, since theres no obvious way to talk sense into him.

Roland St. Jude
2009-06-04, 05:22 PM
Sheriff of Moddingham: Please keep this discussion civil and within the Forum Rules. Perhaps the best advice I can give you in this regard is to address only others' comments and not other people's personal traits.

Gorbash
2009-06-04, 07:09 PM
1. At level 1, a wizard gets killed by almost everything. There is no way to talk around that. To phantasise that a wizard somehow stands a chance against a class that gets a touch attack doing 1d6+STR as a BONUS FEAT at that level is quite amusing (remember, grapple will haunt the wizard until he somehow gets his hand on stilled/silenced spells by mid-levels - something I hardly see in typical wizard builds- or a ring of freedom of movement around lvl 16).

Have you even bothered to read the comments?

ABRUPT JAUNT.

So, yeah there's a way around that.

Monk: Tries to hit/charge/whatever
Wizard: Abrupt Jaunt 10 feet, his turn, moves away 20 feet (so now you can't even flurry with Shurikens), casts a spell.

x3

And what's your way around that?

Goatman_Ted
2009-06-04, 07:19 PM
And what's your way around that?

OMG! Non-Core!

(Just like the classes, feats, spells and size-boosters Monks so desperately rely upon)

lesser_minion
2009-06-04, 07:25 PM
I have to admit, Abrupt Jaunt probably shouldn't be considered here - it is one specific ability, and certainly looks overpowered, especially at low levels.

Gorbash
2009-06-04, 07:31 PM
OMG! Non-Core!

This reminds me of that joke where some farmer's chicken gets sick and he invites a biologist, a chemist and a physicist to cure it:

A biologist tries for a week, doing research on various species of chicken and ultimately fails.

A chemist tries for a month to make a cure from some obscure elements, adding some test drugs, but alas, he also fails.

A phycisist tries for a year and he finally exclaims:

I got the cure! Except it'll work only on a spherical chicken in vacuum.

So, Giacomo, you're the phycisist in this story. You've got these wild ideas about masterwork tools for every skill, maxing cross-class skills and buying the infamous partially charged wands, but when it comes down to pratice, it won't fly. Keep trying, though. I'm sure you'll find some newcomers to the game who'll foolishly believe you, but in reality, you haven't convinced anyone about anything.

Waffles for the effort, though.

Pharaoh's Fist
2009-06-04, 10:04 PM
This debate can only be settled by the manliness that is PvP combat!

Come on, build monks and put them through the Test of Spite (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=113654)!

Let's see how it goes!

Collin152
2009-06-04, 11:43 PM
This debate can only be settled by the manliness that is PvP combat!

Come on, build monks and put them through the Test of Spite (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=113654)!

Let's see how it goes!

This sentiment is one I agree with. On my hat.

Pharaoh's Fist
2009-06-04, 11:44 PM
I will probably be playing a caster, if that's any incentive.

Sstoopidtallkid
2009-06-04, 11:56 PM
Which is miraculously not surprised? And which is not even a "pet" dog anymore the moment the druid gets killed?

I thought you were going for druid wearing armour and shield and thus with better AC flat-footed...:smallbiggrin:Well, that works(except for the weight), but no, I'm just talking about the pet. It's far more effective under those conditions than a Monk. You're the one who claims Core is balanced, post one situation in Core where a Monk is a better choice for the party than a Druid. If you're really into it, take a party through the Test of Might. It's not perfect(after all, it's core+some Completes+a couple others), and it's not statistically significant, but if you win there, it will go a long way to proving you know what you're talking about.
Anyhow, I guess an AMF world with 3s in all stats is not exactly the standard campaign...

- GiacomoNo, it's not. But that's the level of stretching you often use to say Monks are good.

Killer Angel
2009-06-05, 02:31 AM
Oh. My. God. He's back. Alright, everyone out of the Monk thread, it's all over. This is going to get very out of hand very quickly, and do not say I didn't warn everyone about this. Get out while you still can before the first round of bannings commences.

Not really... this is the 14th page: the thread survived longer than others "Monks Vs Universe".
Joke apart, imo the interesting points are all in the first pages.
posts n. 6 and 70 gives good and solid (imo) arguments on the weakness of monks.
Still, even if I'm strongly convinced of monk's weakness, my opinion is that a monk, even if weaker than the other classes, can be fun to play and can even give a moderately good contribute to the party (well, if the party is composed by characters played as intended by WotC: blaster sorcerers, battle-healing clerics, and so on. Many gaming groups play this way).

Kaiyanwang
2009-06-05, 04:14 AM
(well, if the party is composed by characters played as intended by WotC: blaster sorcerers, battle-healing clerics, and so on. Many gaming groups play this way).

Fine. The monk of my example was decent because barring the wizard, all the members played more or less "as intended", assumingwotc knows what do.

Kurald Galain
2009-06-05, 04:56 AM
Ah, we should just compile a list of best responses from the previous threads. It's all been said at least ten times already.

mostlyharmful
2009-06-05, 05:04 AM
Ah, we should just compile a list of best responses from the previous threads. It's all been said at least ten times already.

I thought that was what we've been doing. that's the first ten pages, after that it has broken down a little into pointless bickering and attempts at one liners yes but as has been said, posts 6 and 70 pretty much already covered everything..... In fact Sstupidtallkid, if you're listening can I copy that post to stick into the next half dozen of these threads, it seems to be all that's really needed.

Kurald Galain
2009-06-05, 05:43 AM
I thought that was what we've been doing. that's the first ten pages, after that it has broken down a little into pointless bickering and attempts at one liners yes but as has been said, posts 6 and 70 pretty much already covered everything..... In fact Sstupidtallkid, if you're listening can I copy that post to stick into the next half dozen of these threads, it seems to be all that's really needed.

Okay. Feel free to quote me on these ones,

http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=4394893&postcount=872
http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=4334336&postcount=51
http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?p=3660260

In particular the last one.

mostlyharmful
2009-06-05, 05:46 AM
Yeah, I suppose we could just ref that guide for why monks don't work every time this comes up. Seems cruel to show that at people who are just asking though.

BobVosh
2009-06-05, 05:54 AM
Ahhhh, each one of these threads the cast changes (except for Sir Gia), but the words...the words are always the same.

I still think it would be best if two people (preference of Sir Giacomo & ?? [insert Kurald Galain//Sstoopidtallkid//anyone else who frequents these discussions] to make a character. Leveling it 1-20 with PHB 2 equipment. Straight wizard vs straight monk. Core only.

Do best of 3 each level or whatever makes you feel best.

Or if you really hate yourself do WBL each level, go nuts.

*edit* Does anyone have the monk version of that samarai thread up in Kurald's post? Basically saying how all the features synergize well to prevent TPKs by shoving the (now dead) party in a bag.

mikej
2009-06-05, 07:42 AM
I still think it would be best if two people (preference of Sir Giacomo & ?? [insert Kurald Galain//Sstoopidtallkid//anyone else who frequents these discussions] to make a character. Leveling it 1-20 with PHB 2 equipment. Straight wizard vs straight monk. Core only.

I've to agree with this suggestion, each person on both sides refuse to fully admit thier wrong, this would send a clearer example. Also it would interesting to see thier methods put to the test. It has been done before to my knowledge, here by that example Fighter vs Wizard (http://forums.gleemax.com/showpost.php?p=10582589)

Killer Angel
2009-06-05, 07:55 AM
I've to agree with this suggestion, each person on both sides refuse to fully admit thier wrong, this would send a clearer example. Also it would interesting to see thier methods put to the test. It has been done before to my knowledge, here by that example Fighter vs Wizard (http://forums.gleemax.com/showpost.php?p=10582589)

mmm... it's unrelated to your point, and even to the proof presented with the example you'd linked, but I usually hate confrontations 20 lev Vs 20 lev.
10 Vs 10 gives more fun... at least the casters must think a little more than the usual routine involving time stop, gate, and so on.
Almost certainly, the result will be the same, but at least you had to think on it. :smallwink:

ZeroNumerous
2009-06-05, 07:56 AM
Leveling it 1-20 with PHB 2 equipment. Straight wizard vs straight monk. Core only.

I can only assume you meant to say PHB equipment, not PHB 2. Either way, this would only serve to prove how broken a wizard is. A better test would be pitting the monk against someone who actually shares the same role as him. Namely, a fighter, barbarian or paladin; as all these classes are intended to fight primarily in melee combat.

Kurald Galain
2009-06-05, 08:04 AM
Leveling it 1-20 with PHB 2 equipment. Straight wizard vs straight monk. Core only.

Do best of 3 each level or whatever makes you feel best.

Yeah, that's been done before. The general outcome is a lengthy discussion about whether some far-fetched interpretation of an obscure rule should be considered "RAW", followed by flaming and a thread lock.

At any rate, if the issue is combat, and we have two builds where one consistently has better hit points and armor class and saves and attack bonus, then what else exactly do you need as proof?

mostlyharmful
2009-06-05, 08:17 AM
one consistently has better hit points and armor class and saves and attack bonus, then what else exactly do you need as proof?

yes but can he talk to monkeys (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3JeLcP7Xa5o)? I think not good sir!:smallcool:

Freelance Henchman
2009-06-05, 08:23 AM
Toasting in Epic Monk Bread.

Optimystik
2009-06-05, 08:51 AM
Lots of people are discussing that; since that list of people includes OP, and since the OP started off the thread by pointing out his own anecdotal evidence, I'd have to say that it appears to be on-topic by definition.

Wrong; the only people to discuss that specific anecdote were myself, Eldariel, Tiki Snakes, and you.

You could make an argument for tying it loosely to the other "my monk soloed a Solar!" claim, but that's not the one I was discussing.


Box car derby would be different; they have fairly specific rules, so adding an engine would be against the RAW.

It's not "against the rules" for the DM to pimp out his player's monk and play his Solar opponent like it just got off the short bus; the DM makes the rules. But when the DM is forced to do that, it weakens the point that monks are self-sufficient, rather than the reverse.

Freelance Henchman
2009-06-05, 08:55 AM
What I'm saying is that, in the Lich fight, the full BAB didn't matter. His grapple and disarm were so far above the Lich's that it would have been the same outcome without the full BAB.

On the Origin of PCs:

If only the OOTS had accepted that Monk into the party instead of Belkar way back in On the Origin of PCs, then maybe Xykon would have been dead-dead already.

BobVosh
2009-06-05, 09:04 AM
Yeah, that's been done before. The general outcome is a lengthy discussion about whether some far-fetched interpretation of an obscure rule should be considered "RAW", followed by flaming and a thread lock.

At any rate, if the issue is combat, and we have two builds where one consistently has better hit points and armor class and saves and attack bonus, then what else exactly do you need as proof?

Contact other plane. With a known greater deity, who is benevolent.

Optimystik
2009-06-05, 09:08 AM
On the Origin of PCs:

If only the OOTS had accepted that Monk into the party instead of Belkar way back in On the Origin of PCs, then maybe Xykon would have been dead-dead already.


You're kidding, right?

Certainly he wouldn't have abandoned V and Durkon (being Lawful and all) but he was no more likely to spot Xykon's phylactery (or its fleeing cleric guard) than Belkar was.

There's also the small matter that Elan would be dead since monks can't use scrolls like rangers can.

Freelance Henchman
2009-06-05, 09:13 AM
There's also the small matter that Elan would be dead since monks can't use scrolls like rangers can.

Sure they can, they have big CHA scores and maxed out UMD skill. Hell, the Monk would have had a wand of Cure Light Wounds on him anyway.

Gaiyamato
2009-06-05, 09:15 AM
heh I had to post this. Note Using Flaws for min/maxing, so this isn't the best or ultimate build. lol.


Halfling Monk: (level 12)

Level 1: Swasbuckler 1
Swashbuckler: Weapon Finesse
Level 1: Claws of the Beast
Flaw: Willing Deformity
Flaw: Deformity (Gaunt - +2 DEX, -2 CON)
Level 2: Monk 1 - UA Basic Variant
Monk: Improved Unarmed Combat
Monk: Improved Grapple
Level 3: Monk 2 - Invisible Fist
Monk: Combat Reflexes
Level 3: Imrpoved Initiative
Level 4: Monk 3
Level 5: Monk 4
Level 6: Monk 5
Level 6: Ordered Chaos
Level 7: Monk 6
Monk: Improved Trip
Level 8: Monk 7 (Gains Barbarian DR)
Level 9: Deaths Chosen 1
D.Chosen: Endurance
Level 9: Demonic Skin
Level 10: Tattooed Monk 1 - Mountain
Level 11: Tattooed Monk 2
Level 12: Tatttooed Monk 3 - Tiger
Level 12: Poison Talons

Use mountain to increase your CON by 4 so the DC for your Talon poison save is increased.
Pump every stat increase into DEX.
And put your second highest stat on Con, third on Wis. (highest on dex obviously)

Not a true monk really, but after reading this thread I thought it cool.
Cannot say that this character would not be able to contribute to a party.
Particularly if the Chosen master for Death's Chosen is also a party member. lol.

I personally find Monks to be a fairly good class. People seem to forget that magic in 3.5 is just plain silly, so comparing anything to it is also silly.
Also I have played hundreds, of characters in hundreds of campaigns, DMed dozens of games since 1989.
Not once have I needed to fly or do crazy ****.
In 3.5 I have found a monk to be perfectly fine in any normal game.

Only in arena type games or with stupid DMs or Pun-Pun as a party member have I ever had an issue with a monk. That said this is one of my only successful monks (and also my first monk):

Halfling
Lawful Good

Level 1: Monk 1
Monk: Improved Unarmed Combat
Monk: Stunning Fist
Level 1: Spellfire Wielder
Level 2: Monk 2
Monk: Deflect Arrows
Level 3: Monk 3
Level 3: Yondalla's Sense
Level 4: Monk 4
Level 5: Monk 5
Level 6: Spellfire channeler
Level 6: Endurance
Level 7: Spellfire Channeler
Level 8: Spellfire Channeler

And that is as far as I got. lol.
DM ran off to Sydney. lol.
Next Level I was going to get Weapon Focus (Spellfire) and another feat. lol.

Stunning Fist saved my life twice and Deflect arrows numerous times.
Running around as an almost completely naked Halfling turned out to be kind of dangerous, even with large volumes of fire kindly donated by the two party wizards whenever we had down time. lol.

Optimystik
2009-06-05, 09:36 AM
Sure they can, they have big CHA scores and maxed out UMD skill. Hell, the Monk would have had a wand of Cure Light Wounds on him anyway.

When utilizing sarcasm, it is best to add a wink after your statement so that people reading it can easily recognize it for what it is. Otherwise they might take you seriously.

Freelance Henchman
2009-06-05, 09:41 AM
When utilizing sarcasm, it is best to add a wink after your statement so that people reading it can easily recognize it for what it is. Otherwise they might take you seriously.

Sarcastic? Me? NEVER!

:smallwink:

Optimystik
2009-06-05, 09:43 AM
:smallwink:

*gives a hug*

Kurald Galain
2009-06-05, 09:48 AM
*gives a hug*

Wait, are you actually hugging forum members now or were you being sarcastic about that? :smalltongue:

Optimystik
2009-06-05, 09:50 AM
Wait, are you actually hugging forum members now or were you being sarcastic about that? :smalltongue:

When *I'm* sarcastic, I wink AND use sarcasm tags.

Then I fill a spoiler block with random smileys because they look pretty. :smallbiggrin:

On topic... yeah, monks. They suck, or something.

Freelance Henchman
2009-06-05, 10:22 AM
You know, now that I think about it I'd LOVE to read an OOTS set in parallel universe where Belkar didn't get in but that Monk did, and the Monk actually IS a "Giacomonk/Joker Monk" as laid out in SG's guide. Imagine it, how different would the story have turned out! He would get along with Miko really well rather than ending up in a fight to the death like Belkar did, and so much other fun stuff would happen. :smallsmile:

Optimystik
2009-06-05, 10:57 AM
You know, now that I think about it I'd LOVE to read an OOTS set in parallel universe where Belkar didn't get in but that Monk did, and the Monk actually IS a "Giacomonk/Joker Monk" as laid out in SG's guide. Imagine it, how different would the story have turned out! He would get along with Miko really well rather than ending up in a fight to the death like Belkar did, and so much other fun stuff would happen. :smallsmile:

- Elan would die because the monk couldn't heal him.
- V would die because nobody would be there to scare off Thog.
- Haley would die after Nale and Sabine double-team her.
- Assuming the monk would even be effective against Yikyik, he wouldn't last once Sabine and Nale devoted their attention to him.
- Roy and the monk (if he survived) would be finished off at that point.
- Durkon gets coup-de-graced before his girlfriend can ask for him to be spared.


End result: TPK, all thanks to a monk.

Freelance Henchman
2009-06-05, 11:32 AM
- Elan would die because the monk couldn't heal him.
- V would die because nobody would be there to scare off Thog.
- Haley would die after Nale and Sabine double-team her.
- Assuming the monk would even be effective against Yikyik, he wouldn't last once Sabine and Nale devoted their attention to him.
- Roy and the monk (if he survived) would be finished off at that point.
- Durkon gets coup-de-graced before his girlfriend can ask for him to be spared.


End result: TPK, all thanks to a monk.

As far as I understood it the power of the Joker Monk comes from his ability of using caster items, so he could just duplicate whatever abilities Belkar used by application of the right kind of wand, which might be aided by synergy with his innate Monk abilities. So I'm guessing the Monk:
- might have had a wand of some cure spell ready
- he might, if Miko hated him as well, have used Hide&Move Silently skills which are class skills to hide from Miko just like Belkar did
- used a Restoration wand to help Durkon
- fought very well if he used wands to buff himself

Pharaoh's Fist
2009-06-05, 12:07 PM
I personally find Monks to be a fairly good class. People seem to forget that magic in 3.5 is just plain silly, so comparing anything to it is also silly.
But Monks lose when compared to Barbarians as well, and Barbarians don't cast spells.

mikej
2009-06-05, 12:15 PM
mmm... it's unrelated to your point, and even to the proof presented with the example you'd linked, but I usually hate confrontations 20 lev Vs 20 lev.
10 Vs 10 gives more fun... at least the casters must think a little more than the usual routine involving time stop, gate, and so on.
Almost certainly, the result will be the same, but at least you had to think on it. :smallwink:

My bad, misplaced some words, should have stated that the example "what it should look like," if Monk X vs Wizard X thread was made.

Generally speaking, if people are going to argue thier class isn't underpowered, wouldn't that apply to all scenarios from lv1-20?
Though you're correct on the mindless "I win buttons."

raptor1056
2009-06-05, 12:38 PM
I don't know if I missed this somewhere in the thread, but does a monk bocome playable with a 20 BAB and d10 hd? Because it seems to me that that would make the monk a decent melee-er. Of course, the slew of useless abilities would still suck. Does anybody have a good fixed monk class?

Pharaoh's Fist
2009-06-05, 12:41 PM
I don't know if I missed this somewhere in the thread, but does a monk bocome playable with a 20 BAB and d10 hd? Because it seems to me that that would make the monk a decent melee-er. Of course, the slew of useless abilities would still suck. Does anybody have a good fixed monk class?

Full BAB

d10 HD

Use Wis in place of Str for to hit, damage, and Str score for qualifying for feats. You can then grab Awesome Blow out of the Monster Manual, which targets peoples reflex saves.

Count as one size larger when it is advantageous for you starting at, oh, 6th level, count as 2 sizes larger when advantageous at 12th, three at 18th. This helps with grapple, trip, etc.

Give them an ability to hit will saves.

Tokiko Mima
2009-06-05, 01:43 PM
You know, now that I think about it I'd LOVE to read an OOTS set in parallel universe where Belkar didn't get in but that Monk did, and the Monk actually IS a "Giacomonk/Joker Monk" as laid out in SG's guide. Imagine it, how different would the story have turned out! He would get along with Miko really well rather than ending up in a fight to the death like Belkar did, and so much other fun stuff would happen. :smallsmile:

Or you could have a misfit situational comedy where the Monk joins the two uber demon/angel gishes that Durkon was going to have join before Roy filled out the party too quickly. They'd show up places right before or right after the OoTS did, and have wacky adventures on the riff that monks aren't even a tiny bit as effective as an optimized character is, but occasionally they can persevere through dumb luck and the laziness of people littering the planet with partially charged wands.

Faleldir
2009-06-05, 01:54 PM
- fought very well if he used wands to buff himself
With average skill points and Charisma, Monks do not use wands better than most classes or benefit more from size increases than chain-tripper Fighters. If anyone can do it, that does not count as an advantage.

Optimystik
2009-06-05, 02:12 PM
With average skill points and Charisma, Monks do not use wands better than most classes or benefit more from size increases than chain-tripper Fighters. If anyone can do it, that does not count as an advantage.

He was joking. UMD is not a class skill for monks, and Charisma is frequently a dump stat due to monks' MADness.

Pharaoh's Fist
2009-06-05, 02:16 PM
He was joking. UMD is not a class skill for monks, and Charisma is frequently a dump stat due to monks' MADness.

Giacomo was not joking. He has an entire guide about it.

Grey Paladin
2009-06-05, 02:25 PM
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v470/Shdow/kogpunch.jpg

Bad kog! bad! no misleading newbies!

Pharaoh's Fist
2009-06-05, 02:28 PM
You punch like somebody who isn't American.

The Glyphstone
2009-06-05, 02:30 PM
Count as one size larger when it is advantageous for you starting at, oh, 6th level, count as 2 sizes larger when advantageous at 12th, three at 18th. This helps with grapple, trip, etc.


Now I have the completely awesome image of a monk walking up to a dragon, grabbing it by the ankle, and smashing it back and forth against the floor Bam-Bam style.

Pharaoh's Fist
2009-06-05, 10:10 PM
So I take it my improvement is an improvement?

Flickerdart
2009-06-05, 10:12 PM
So I take it my improvement is an improvement?
Well, yes. But so is giving the Monk free proficiency with a Whip.

Though it would make Grappling a more viable strategy, even without the BAB.

Sstoopidtallkid
2009-06-05, 10:23 PM
I still think it would be best if two people (preference of Sir Giacomo & ?? [insert Kurald Galain//Sstoopidtallkid//anyone else who frequents these discussions] to make a character. Leveling it 1-20 with PHB 2 equipment. Straight wizard vs straight monk. Core only.

Do best of 3 each level or whatever makes you feel best.

Or if you really hate yourself do WBL each level, go nuts.I refuse to do arena fights, but I have repeatedly stated that I'm willing to make a build to accomplish any task at any level better than a Monk, with reasonable* restrictions. I am...rarely taken up on the offer. Note again that I refuse to do arena fights and hate levels 15+, viewing them as not indicative of actual play experience, but for a straight capabilities comparison I am ready and willing.

*In other words, there's core-only, no spellcasting, no items, obscene point-buys(high or low), with/out allies, and any number of other possible restrictions, but when you start stacking a bunch of those I get annoyed.

quick_comment
2009-06-05, 10:36 PM
Im willing to build a at any level to fight a monk. Using core, or whatever, I dont care. Only requirement is that the opponent has only monk or monk prestige classes.

Doc Roc
2009-06-06, 02:01 AM
The Test Of Spite awaits any monk willing to take on a arena designed specifically to be indicative of actual high-lethality play. I am actively working to make it a serenely elegant death trap with an emphasis on equal-opportunity annihilation.


Quick Comment, if it would please you, I will seek out a monk willing to defend himself and his class.

Pharaoh's Fist
2009-06-06, 02:30 AM
Come one somebody, accept the offer!:smallsmile:

Oh, and I think I've managed to come up with a decent Monk build.


Brother Diago

LG Human Expert 20

Feats:
Sacred Vow
Vow of Abstinence
Vow of Chastity
Vow of Nonviolence
Vow of Obedience
Vow of Peace
Vow of Poverty
Vow of Purity

Skills:
Autohypnosis
Concentration
Craft: Manuscript
Knowledge: Religion
Knowledge: History
Perform: Oratory

quick_comment
2009-06-06, 11:30 AM
The Test Of Spite awaits any monk willing to take on a arena designed specifically to be indicative of actual high-lethality play. I am actively working to make it a serenely elegant death trap with an emphasis on equal-opportunity annihilation.


Quick Comment, if it would please you, I will seek out a monk willing to defend himself and his class.

Ok. What is the cheese level? I can do anything from mildly optimized fighter up to abusive dweomerkeeper.

I assume im supposed to build a caster to show that monks cannot in fact, beat a prepared wizard.

Doc Roc
2009-06-06, 11:42 AM
Take a look at the house rules.

Bassetking
2009-06-06, 04:51 PM
Ahhhh, each one of these threads the cast changes (except for Sir Gia), but the words...the words are always the same.

I still think it would be best if two people (preference of Sir Giacomo & ?? [insert Kurald Galain//Sstoopidtallkid//anyone else who frequents these discussions] to make a character. Leveling it 1-20 with PHB 2 equipment. Straight wizard vs straight monk. Core only.

Do best of 3 each level or whatever makes you feel best.

Or if you really hate yourself do WBL each level, go nuts.

*edit* Does anyone have the monk version of that samarai thread up in Kurald's post? Basically saying how all the features synergize well to prevent TPKs by shoving the (now dead) party in a bag.


I've to agree with this suggestion, each person on both sides refuse to fully admit thier wrong, this would send a clearer example. Also it would interesting to see thier methods put to the test. It has been done before to my knowledge, here by that example Fighter vs Wizard (http://forums.gleemax.com/showpost.php?p=10582589)


mmm... it's unrelated to your point, and even to the proof presented with the example you'd linked, but I usually hate confrontations 20 lev Vs 20 lev.
10 Vs 10 gives more fun... at least the casters must think a little more than the usual routine involving time stop, gate, and so on.
Almost certainly, the result will be the same, but at least you had to think on it. :smallwink:

It's been done before.

1) Gia won't do 10 vs. 10 He'll do 11 vs. 11, or whichever point in the level curve the monk increases from his previous number of iterations of flurry of blows to the next step up.

2) Gia won't agree to any books beyond the initial three of core, and has serious issues with people making use of the Monster Manual.

3) Gia will insist that for the purposes of the fight, there are to be no prestige classes, and no multi-classing.

He will then spend thirty pages bloviating as to how making use of tactics that kill an entire party that is not made of monks, using imaginary Non-raw items, and heavily boosting cross-class skills makes the Monk a viable party member.

EDIT: Note: None of this post attacks Giacomo as a person. Every point raised, every position noted is verifiable from his posting history.

Doc Roc
2009-06-06, 08:38 PM
Having read his guide, I feel this is indeed an accurate summary of the situation and not an attack :smalleek:

Sstoopidtallkid
2009-06-06, 10:27 PM
It's been done before.

1) Gia won't do 10 vs. 10 He'll do 11 vs. 11, or whichever point in the level curve the monk increases from his previous number of iterations of flurry of blows to the next step up. I will face him at whatever level he wishes.
2) Gia won't agree to any books beyond the initial three of core, and has serious issues with people making use of the Monster Manual. I will agree to be limited to the SRD, but no more limitations than that(if he wants to block the Monster Manual from players, I can quote him saying partially charged wands are assumed despite only vaguely being referenced in the DMG). Non-core is better for balance, not worse, but it's up to him.
3) Gia will insist that for the purposes of the fight, there are to be no prestige classes, and no multi-classing.I would object, were I not playing the best 1-20 class and he the worst.
He will then spend thirty pages bloviating as to how making use of tactics that kill an entire party that is not made of monks, using imaginary Non-raw items, and heavily boosting cross-class skills makes the Monk a viable party member.I recommend we defer to the Beholder to determine RAW, RAI, and RANSDMWA(Rules as No Sane DM Would Allow). Since my challenge is on the basis of 'how does this character benefit or hinder the party', I think we can assume the Eversmoking Bottle will not be mentioned. As for cross-class skills, unless he buys the aforementioned wands, it is not an issue.

quick_comment
2009-06-07, 12:56 AM
I would be willing to do core wizard vs core monk. No prcs, no custom items, no leadership, no pre-divination

Doc Roc
2009-06-07, 12:58 AM
The test of spite awaits, if you can get anyone to go for it. It's basically explicitly for white-glove-to-face challenges.

Pharaoh's Fist
2009-06-07, 12:59 AM
Perhaps one of you should play the monk, seeing as how no one else will.

quick_comment
2009-06-07, 01:03 AM
Perhaps one of you should play the monk, seeing as how no one else will.

Well, neither of us believe the monk can win. The only way to win with the monk is to get a custom item of teleport at will and run away.


Lets make this official:

I am willing to fight any person with the following conditions:
1) Opponent has only monk or monk prcs.
2) Core only, core + complete, core+complete+spc+mic, open
3) No infinite loop cheese (monk can do pun pun as well as anyone)
4) No custom items except those which are inherently custom (weapons, scrolls, armor, etc)
5) Neutral GM
6) Levels 5-20
7) Out of pure graciousness, I will forgo incantrix and polymorph.

BobVosh
2009-06-07, 02:15 AM
I kinda want to watch Gia actually play his joker monk, or one of his various monks.

Pharaoh's Fist
2009-06-07, 02:17 AM
But no one ever accepts these kinds of challenges...

MickJay
2009-06-07, 06:46 AM
...and that's why there are still people who consider monks to be mechanically good, because nobody has yet proven in combat that they're weaker than most other classes.

Pharaoh's Fist
2009-06-07, 06:51 AM
I think I understand why.

If they do not accept, nothing is disproved.They do not lose face. But if they do, they stand a chance at being proven wrong. Therefore, it is more beneficial for them not to accept.

Optimystik
2009-06-07, 02:40 PM
Giacomo was not joking. He has an entire guide about it.

I was obviously referring to Freelance Henchman (the person quoted in your own post), not Giacomo.

GreatWyrmGold
2009-06-08, 04:18 PM
I lost my place, so I'll boil down the reasons it seems that the monk is disliked. If I missed any, let me know.

1. Monks are hard to break.People like infinite loops/3 characters for the price of one/1,004,943,976+ per round damage dealers, etc. The monk is none of those things.

2. It looks better than it is.

3. You can't enchant fists (your best weapon after a certain point, if it wasn't for this).

4. Many of the abilities are nigh-useless. Cue Tounge of Sun and Moon, slow fall, flurry of blows, etc.

5. Its "best" strategy, Spring Attack, and another strategy, Flurry of Blows (or normal full attack), are sub-optimal. One decreases damage output amazingly while offering little defense against long-reach opponents, fast ones, ranged attacks, spells, etc; the other forces Mr. Monk to sacrifice his mobility.

6. It has no clear role in the party.

7. The ninja class, which is thematically similar enough for some people, is better for solo adventuring AND has a clear role (sneak) and few/none of the monk's other problems.

Also, please PM me about what book the swordsage (and the unarmed varient of it) are if you know.

Eldariel
2009-06-08, 04:28 PM
Swordsage (and the Unarmed variant) are both base classes from Tome of Battle: The Book of Nine Swords. I know this isn't PM, but someone else might be interested in it too.

Keld Denar
2009-06-08, 04:32 PM
Swordsage is in Tome of Battle, the be all end all of FUN melee. You get maneuvers which allow you to do FUN and CREATIVE things in melee, instead of just full attacking till it stops moving.

And monk isn't hard to break. Look up the Tashalatoran King of Smack or similar builds. When you are swinging 64d6 fists, people tend to stop and listen to you. Of course, the main reason the build is good is because it only has 2 levels of Monk, and a LOT of levels of Psychic Warrior. In fact, the only reason Monk is there is to leach the only 2 good class features, scalable UAS and bonus feats, before multiclassing into a class with OPTIONS.

Monk20 is hard to break though. Heck, monk20 is hard to optimize, much less break. The only thing you can break with a monk is the fact that they have Knowledge Religion as a class skill, and thus are 2 points ahead of most other classes in calling Pazuzu to ascend to pun-punhood, and who actually does that?

Doc Roc
2009-06-08, 04:49 PM
One other important thing.
Monks have perform, so I used them as a basis for my buildomancers, yet another infinite loop.

Eldariel
2009-06-08, 04:53 PM
Swordsage is in Tome of Battle, the be all end all of FUN melee. You get maneuvers which allow you to do FUN and CREATIVE things in melee, instead of just full attacking till it stops moving.

And monk isn't hard to break. Look up the Tashalatoran King of Smack or similar builds. When you are swinging 64d6 fists, people tend to stop and listen to you. Of course, the main reason the build is good is because it only has 2 levels of Monk, and a LOT of levels of Psychic Warrior. In fact, the only reason Monk is there is to leach the only 2 good class features, scalable UAS and bonus feats, before multiclassing into a class with OPTIONS.

Monk20 is hard to break though. Heck, monk20 is hard to optimize, much less break. The only thing you can break with a monk is the fact that they have Knowledge Religion as a class skill, and thus are 2 points ahead of most other classes in calling Pazuzu to ascend to pun-punhood, and who actually does that?

Tashalatora isn't the only way to make strong Monks. Four easiest ways to make strong Monks:
-Monk 1/Druid 19; Nice Flurry, primary Unarmed Strike in Wildshape forms, Wis to AC and bonus feat. As a bonus, totally Core.
-Tashalatora with Psychic Warrior, Ardent, Illithid Slayer or heck, Psion. Two levels of Monk, rest in the Psionic class. Pick up Expansion, Offensive Precognition, etc. powers and go to town with your Xd8 fists, where X is somewhere in the 50s.
-Sacred Fist with Monk 1/Cleric 5 lead-in (fractional BAB - otherwise Cleric 6 or so); full casting from there on. Cast Miracle (or Hero-domain)ed Giant Size on yourself, Divine Power, Divine Favor, Righteous Wrath of the Faithful, Holy Star, etc. on yourself and see above.
-Enlightened Fist with Monk 1/Wizard 4/etc. with Greater Mighty Wallop, Greater Magic Fang, Wraithstrike, etc. on your melee attacks and hell, Arcane Disciple Divine Power while at it; pick 3 levels of Incantatrix to persist infi spells per day.


None of those involve more than two Monk-levels, and all involve some type of spellcasting. Basically, the worthwhile abilities of Monk are:
-Unarmed Strike - biggest Base Die weapon available in the game (and just happens to get iteratives as per normal) and thus the natural starting point for size increases.
-Wisdom to AC - available on level 1, can be relevant when Monk's Belt isn't allowed in Wildshape or such.
-Unarmed Strikes - due to the wording of this ability, you maintain it while changing shape buying you a crapton of extra attacks to go with naturals.
-Flurry of blows - too bad the second Flurry takes 11 levels (that's approximately 7 dead levels) to acquire. Because Monk is Medium BAB, the penalty reductions really don't help at all compared to just advancing a full BAB class.
-Bonus feats - the number of bonus feats Monk gets in two levels is actually pretty high making it handy for feat-starved types. Three feats in two levels beats out even the Fighter and with Unearthed Arcana, you have a great selection available.
-Good saves - some classes appreciate the two levels of good saves; after that, the progression slows down (this is provided that you don't play with rationalized rules).
-Evasion - it's a nice bonus, just like the saves.

If you go through the list, you'll notice that everything worthwhile in Monk is gained over the first two levels. The single exception is the Unarmed Strike damage, but you really don't want to dedicate all 20 of your levels just towards that.

Sir Giacomo
2009-06-08, 04:56 PM
Sorry for not having replied in a while.

I'll catch up and respond in four parts/posts to those monk-criticising posts that I thought were pointed out to be the most representatitive.
They disappoint me, in that - as I already said - most of the issues raised have been answered by me already a year ago.
But here it goes...

PART I

(to post No. 6)


My monk post a couple weeks ago(since I don't want to type it out again). I'm considering making a 'Monks Suck' handbook and just linking that though, at this point.

Monk problems:
MAD: You need Wis for AC, Dex for AC, Con for HP, Str for to-hit and AB. You also can't dump Int since skills are pretty important.

Again, as I already said, already in core the bonus feats without requirements mean that you can focus entirely on, say, STR and still get the important reach feats like combat reflexes and improved trip (and choose half-orc or orc as races without fearing the INT penalties).
Additionally, you can keep improved grapple while being enlarged (the standard grappler buff) even with a DEX of 8, while everyone else (including the fighter) needs 15 (remember that enlarge deducts -2 from DEX).
Outside core? Get intuitive attack (BoED) and you can also nicely focus on WIS.

Low AC: You can't wear armor, meaning that your Wis needs to be higher than the Armor bonus the Rogue is getting. Generally, you fall behind on AC. MAD excabrates this.

No, you do not "fall behind". This has been shown repeatedly.
The monk has a slower start in AC (in particular when without access to the mage armour buff). But until level 20, he can emulate
- armour bonus with bracers of armour or mage armour (greater mage armour outside core). That's +4 to +8, equating the armour part of the armour-wearing classes.
- shield bonus with ring of force shield or a shield spell item (wand, ring of spell storing, custom) That's +2 to +4, equating the shield part of the shield-wearing classes.
Meanwhile, with a WIS of 20 with his monk AC he'll eventually equate the two potential enhancement bonuses. (touch AC to boost).
And, of course, he never needs to worry about armour penalties and weight (like max DEX bonus with heavier armour).
And, of course, MAD has nothing to do with it.

Low AB: Flurry of Blows costs at low levels, and the partial BAB doesn't help. By high levels, Fighters are Power Attacking for 20 and still hitting, so the fact that you can, too, isn't helpful. MAD excabrates this.

At level 20 (which you imply with your power attack example), the monk has 15/15/15/10/5 BAB vs the fighter's 20/15/10/5. Notice anything? Yes. the additional two attacks at highest BAB equal the fighters first highest BAB of 20. (both have total 50 BAB*EDIT: wrong of course, the monk has 60 total BAB vs the fighter's 50 BAB.EDIT END).
Again, MAD has nothing to do with this.
(and....guess what happens when the monk buffs with divine power?:smallamused:)
Also, you'll have to show me the core lvl 20 fighter who with full power attack is still hitting better the average AC 40 of CR 20 encounters than the core level 20 monk.

Low damage: You have to stack size increases(not easy) to get your fists up to dealing good damage, and you still end up not great. MAD excabrates this.

Again, MAD has nothing to do with it -quite the contrary.
Like the rogue, the monk has a powerful non-STR-related damage source: size stacking (you mentioned it yourself). So you can build DEX-focused monks, WIS-focused monks, or even INT-focused monks.
In core, the monk without polymorphing cheese can go to 6d8 base per hit by level 15 (add enhancement bonuses and STR on top and you'll be better than the fighter in damage-dealing).

Wierd/useless abilities: Tongue of the Sun and Moon? Really? Are you really in so many situations where you need to speak Treant and the casters can't cast Tongues?

You fail to see that this particular monk ability is way more potent than a simple tongues spell. You may wish to check the SRD yourself. You'll be surprised.

Most of their abilities fall into similar problems by either replicating low-level spells or being too situational(or both), with the Capstone being nearly as much of a nerf as a benefit. SR is useless, too, blocking allied combat buffs and not helping with the BBEG casters or certain low-level deadly spells.

Odd. When paging through the monster manual, I find that most creatures that ARE able to cast spells or use spell-like abilities have a lower caster level than their CR implies. This makes SR mightily useful.
And as to buffing problems...there may be the idea that a monk could use self-buffs from items which would bypass SR. Now where have I read a guide about this...hmmm....:smallbiggrin:

Limited abilities: A lot of their abilities only happen once/day, including the Fort SoD that is once/week. Speed boosts that don't stack with(and are inferior to for half of the levels) the most common spell to boost speed. Just not useful.

Yep. It's horrible that the most powerful abilities cannot be used 1/round. But maybe it was for balance reasons?:smallwink:
And for your information: the most common spell to boost speed is fly, and that stacks just fine with the monk's enhancement bonus to speed (just like any other movement form - burrowing, swimming, climbing, you name it).

Poor synergy: Lots of movement-based abilities and skills, then a major class feature that requires a full-attack.

Yes, sad that they did not include pounce out of the box (maybe again that bal-word?). But maybe this can be obtained in another way? Maybe there are some maxing guides out there that provide easy ways to do it? Let's google!

All of their attacks target either Fort or AC, which are generally either both low or both high.

I dunno...I always found that the touch AC of opponents tends to be quite low.

The special combat actions are always either Str-checks(which MAD wrecks),

Again that MAD myth....

AB checks(ruined for obvious reasons), or penalize light weapons and boost THF, meaning the Monk is poor at them.

? You do realise that the monk can also take the TWF tree and add them on top of his flurry?
And that unarmed attacks can use power attack? And can both be finesse'd or used with STR as bonus stat?

Low skill points: Really, you expected me to put something here? Fine, MAD excabrates this.

Strange. I always thought that 4 skill points/lvl were in the middle range of the skill point lists. And MAD does again have nothing to do with it (I mean, come on, which non-INT-caster class has enough points left to put a 16 in INT with 28 pt buy?). My core joker monk build hat 7 skill points/lvl.
Outside core, take Nymph's kiss for 1 more/lvl if you want to make a skill-focused monk.

Poor proficiencies: You're limited to using 'special Monk weapons', most of which have poor base damage and weak special abilities.

...like being usable for tripping attacks and giving bonuses to disarm...

Effective PA is pretty much closed off to you,

...excepting, of course, the monk weapon quarterstaff...(flurry with double dmg from power attack at your leisure)

and most of the weapons are Light, meaning special combat actions are harder. You also have no reach weapons at all, meaning that AoO(the normal method for dex-focused special combat action-based fighters) is sharply limited.

Oh, it is not. You see, the big thing for AoO fighting is improved trip - and that necessitates a touch attack, not a regular attack. So just pick up that non-proficient spiked chain and get enlarged...:smallbiggrin:

Unarmed wakness: Unarmed strikes cannot be enchanted, meaning you have no way to overcome DR/Silver or similar, and no way to strike incorporeal creatures at all. Yes, you can buy magic Kamas or something, but then why aren't you playing a Fighter and using something good?

A better thing is to just use gauntlest (courtesy Lord_Khaine). And if you wish to use flurry occasionally, just use the gauntlet as an off-hand weapon with TWF.
And of course you're not using the fighter since you may wish to play an unarmed combatant. (but more about this in the next post).

Not saying they don't have uses, or that a Monk can't be optimized to be great, just that generally other classes are a better fit most times.

No, not always. But that is true for all classes. (for instance, I'd not prefer to play a wizard when I wish to play the priestess of a healing goddess).:smallcool:

End of Part I.

GreatWyrmGold
2009-06-08, 05:00 PM
Thanks. I said "PM" because I figured that if a reply came on the thread in a few days, I'd miss it.

Yeah, I guess monk can be broken through multiclassing. Can I have a link to the King of Swing build?

Thanks!
Edit: King of Smack. Stupid music history class trying to confuse me!

Eldariel
2009-06-08, 05:07 PM
Monk problems:
MAD: You need Wis for AC, Dex for AC, Con for HP, Str for to-hit and AB. You also can't dump Int since skills are pretty important.

Again, as I already said, already in core the bonus feats without requirements mean that you can focus entirely on, say, STR and still get the important reach feats like combat reflexes and improved trip (and choose half-orc or orc as races without fearing the INT penalties).
Additionally, you can keep improved grapple while being enlarged (the standard grappler buff) even with a DEX of 8, while everyone else (including the fighter) needs 15 (remember that enlarge deducts -2 from DEX).
Outside core? Get intuitive attack (BoED) and you can also nicely focus on WIS.

What does this help? The problem isn't qualifying for feats. It's the fact that you don't have the numbers to compare to other characters of similar level. You have medium BAB, you'd need very high Str to make up for your lack of To Hit and your poor Grapple-checks (especially since Flurry further penalizes them). You can't wear armor, you need very high Dex and Wis to make up for the lack of AC. And you need Con by default since you only have a d8 Hit Die.

Oh, and you won't have skillpoints to be a sneaky scout with UMD unless you have at least 10 Int and Human, or 12 Int otherwise. And due to UMD being cross-class, you need base Charisma bonuses to reach any relevant numbers in any decent amount of time.


You really need to address this point if you want any credibility. Nothing of what you've said on the subject does anything to dispel any of this. The only relevant part you brought up is Intuitive Attack, but then your only offense is Stunning Fist, because your standard attack deals no damage and you can't grapple (it's an Str-based action), Trip or do anything else of the sort.

This means you have your Monk-level worth of relevant attacks per day (that is, you have 1 relevant attack per day on level 1) and it requires passing first AC and then Fort. In other words, you limit yourself to one attack that needs to penetrate two defenses to do anything and that's limited on uses per day.

Eldariel
2009-06-08, 05:13 PM
Thanks. I said "PM" because I figured that if a reply came on the thread in a few days, I'd miss it.

Yeah, I guess monk can be broken through multiclassing. Can I have a link to the King of Swing build?

Thanks!

I'll give you few handy links. More relevantly:
Some handy links for CO work. (http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?t=482636) <- Whatever class you're thinking of build you're looking for, chances are good you can find it there. It's an older one for the Wizards Char Ops-forum, but it has enough of a history to cover all of 3.5. If you know what to look for, you can probably find it.

Handy links: Map to the world of Minmaxing (http://brilliantgameologists.com/boards/index.php?topic=143.0) <- Much the same as above, this is an alternative forum founded for the mass exodus from the Wizards forum after the Virtual Community Lead was fired. It's newer, but just about all the oldies transferred over so you can find handy stuff, especially newer work, there.

And then, the specific build you asked for:
Tashalatoran God of Smack (http://forums.gleemax.com/wotc_archive/index.php/t-883674) <- Psychic Warrior-based Tashalatora-build (Tashalatora is a feat that allows stacking Monk ability growth on a psionic class) that maximizes unarmed damage and stacks size increases for great justice!

Goatman_Ted
2009-06-08, 05:19 PM
PART I


I love Giacoposts.

They field a more persuasive case against the Monk than Kurald, Sstoopid, Keld, Eldariel or the prolific poster of the week ever could.

Jayabalard
2009-06-08, 05:20 PM
It's not "against the rules" for the DM to pimp out his player's monk and play his Solar opponent like it just got off the short bus; the DM makes the rules. But when the DM is forced to do that, it weakens the point that monks are self-sufficient, rather than the reverse.I'm not sure what this has to do with the quoted text; I'm only disagreeing with your bad analogy (likening changing parts on a Chevy Malibu to increase performance to someone changing the rules to increase monk performance).

Sir Giacomo
2009-06-08, 05:24 PM
Part II


Reposted from quite awhile ago in the archives .

(...see below...)

Note that this doesn't even bother comparing the Monk with a Wizard, who really ought to be able to mop the floor with any melee class if the Wizard's player knows what he's doing, at all. It's another class doing almost exactly what the Monk is supposed to be doing, but better, using only Core feats and items. The "advantages" the Monk holds are negligible (and become worse if the Fighter doesn't take all six of the Monk Bonus Feats). This is simply poor mechanical game design. No Player Class should ever be redundant.

And luckily it is not, as I am going to prove...

Originally Posted by Telonius
I'd say that monks are underpowered.

My reason?

Morris the Mock Monk.
Human Fighter, Strength-focused.
Feats:
1: Improved Unarmed Strike
1(Human): Stunning Fist
1(Fighter): Power Attack
2(Fighter): Improved Grapple
3: Deflect Arrows
4(Fighter): Improved Disarm
6: Combat Reflexes
6(Fighter): Improved Trip
8(Fighter): Weapon Focus (Unarmed Strike)
9: Weapon Specialization (Unarmed Strike)
10(Fighter): Greater Weapon Focus (Unarmed Strike)
12: Greater Weapon Specialization (Unarmed Strike)

Morris will have exactly the same ability scores as a 20th-level Monk. Morris has all six of the monk's Bonus Feats, while the Monk can only have three of them. Fighter has 6 feats (4 fighter and 2 normal) left over between then and 20th level - the Monk only has 7 feats to begin with (8 if a human), so Morris can most likely take all of the same feats that the Monk does by level 20, minus one.

And first objections.
- first of all, the fighter cannot take stunning fist at first level. Only the monk can do that.
- then, as I said many times, the fighter encounters MAD the moment he takes improved grapple and combat reflexes, since he'll have to have a DEX of 15 to keep those feats while being enlarged. Possible with DEX boosters at high levels, but not at levels 1-6 I daresay.
- also, in levels 1-3 the fighter is behind the monk in total number of feats.
- in levels 4-6 they are equal. The turning point is level 8, when the fighter at long last is 1 feat ahead. Of course this does not say anything about the abilty to replace a monk. Not at all.

He has an average of 20 more hit points than the monk by 20th level.

Meanwhile, the monk from level 7 gets a self-healing capability equal to a +4 CON bonus. Let's say the fighter hp advantage and the monk healing cancel each other, OK?

He has a higher BAB, which means he can hit more often than an equivalent-level Monk.

Unfortunately for the poor fighter the monk can get divine power (also adding hp), completely negating that BAB advantage. And, the monk has more attacks thanks to flurry. The total BAB both have is equal (without divine power, see also part I).

Morris Power Attacks for at least 3 every time; with his Weapon Specialization, this means he's hitting as hard as a 20th-level monk starting at 12th level. (Except his attack bonus is still 2 better than the monk).

So you think 3d6 two-handed sword attack +4 spc +6 power attacking is better than 6d8 damage? Think again (it is 20 of the fighter vs 27 of the monk). Better yet use the full BAB advantage and the weapon focus advantage for +14 power attacking damage...just overturning the monk. Oh wait, the monk can do divine power...looks quite bad for the mock monk.:smallbiggrin:

Morris can wear enchantable armor while fighting, which costs less than the Monk's Bracers; he has an AC almost equalling, if not exceeding, the Monk. He can use his enchanted Gauntlets without using a Feat to gain proficiency.

If only...the monk would need the expensive bracers? There is another way to get an armour bonus even in the core game that does not need true armour...you should know by now what that is.
And...I may be mistaken on this, but since a gauntlet is listed under "unarmed attacks" and equal to an unarmed strike in everything but the lethal damage part (Which is there for monks, anyhow), and all creatures are considered proficient in their natural attacks, I do not see any penalty for using gauntlets for the monk.

Monk, on the other hand, gets faster movement, a higher jump check, evasion, +2 vs enchantment, Slow Fall, immunity to diseases, ability to heal 2x monk level hp per day, immunity to poison, Dimension door 1/day, SR monk level + 10, Quivering Palm, no aging penalties, speaks with everything, etherealness (monk level) rounds per day, DR 10/magic, better Reflex and Will saves, one more feat than Morris, 2 more skill points per level (with a much better selection of class skills), and extra attacks from Flurry of Blows.

Er...yes (you forgot improved evasion)? And the fighter is going to get that exactly how?

But several of the Monk's bonuses can be gained by magic items. The Fighter can afford these, since he's paying less for his armor. Ring of Feather Fall, Periapt of Health OR Periapt of Proof against Poison (can't have both on at once), widgets of Etherealness and Dimension Door 1/day.

Funny that you attempt to emulate the monk class with items, since I once wrote a guide that drew a lot of flak for daring to emulate some abilities of another class with items...:smallsmile:
Well...the fighter getting all the stuff to emulate a monk's special abilities will have to spend more than 200,000 gp (very conservative estimate, and, for instance, still not be able to get the full monk SR and same strong saves). That's 200,000 gp extra for the monk player to spend... and you know that I know many ways to spend them (starting with the 21,000 gp divine power wand).
And the fighter is not paying less for his mithral full plate +5 for 30,000some gp than the monk for his wand of mage armour, ring of force shield, and WIS amulet +4 that come on top of his WIS 14 and monk AC bonus.

So, Monk's advantages: Faster movement, a higher jump check, evasion, +2 vs enchantment, immunity to diseases OR poison, ability to heal 2x monk level hp per day, SR monk level + 10, Quivering Palm, no aging penalties, speaks with everything, DR 10/magic, better Reflex and Will saves, one more feat than Morris, 2 more skill points per level (with a much better selection of class skills), and extra attacks from Flurry of Blows.

Sounds like complete monk advantage to me. By getting TWF and ITWF the mock fighter could spend two of his remaining four feats to somehow get close to the advantage that the two flurry attacks provide. The other two feats could be used to get a somewhat better reflex and will save.

That's it. Those are the only advantages a real monk has over Morris, who has deliberately left his normal role to do what the Monk is supposed to be able to do. (I'm not going to do the stats, but I suspect that any advantages the extra Flurry attacks would give the Monk are rather small).

Yes. You have shown that Morris the Mock monk is truly only mockery.:smallwink:

Do not get me wrong: a fighter can be built to do great things, especially in non-core or when using archery and mounted combat feats. But emulating a monk is not the fighter's forte...

End of Part II.

Dagren
2009-06-08, 06:09 PM
I'm curious as to what exactly the wand monk can do that, say, a rogue of similar level can't? Every class can pick up UMD and use wands, so what's so great about it when a monk does it?

Faleldir
2009-06-08, 06:14 PM
Don't you see? A Monk can use wands to improve his grapple! Because most monsters are humanoid and smaller than him, and it's impossible to cast spells in a grapple!

Sir Giacomo
2009-06-08, 07:08 PM
Part III.


Giacomo, is this truly necessary? You're a smart guy, you can figure all this out for yourself.

Oh, thanks!
I wonder when you will realise that I am the one providing all kinds of examples, rules quotes and evidence, while the other side is merely maintains that a monk sucks without any evidence to back up the claims (like a year ago).
In the meantime, I guess it is quite entertaining that the monk always has to face by himself challenges of CR +3 to somehow prove he is any good, or has to defeat a druid with 3s in all stats, or has to do all kind of strange feats that are never, ever, asked of any other class that I know of.

Wizard can say 4 times per day "50/50, you die" to high save classes and and an almost autokill on low save types.

Unfortunately (for the wizard, that is:smallwink:), he'll need to survive surprise attacks, lost initiative AND attacks during combat against several opponents. 50% making the save that are near 100% likely to kill the wizard end up making the wizard quite fragile, don't you think?

Sure, a wizard is fragile, but he also packs more potent offense than any other class on that level. Also, grapple requires reaching the Wizard (who gets Overland Flight on 9)

Which is quite slow and not so useful in dungeon settings against good jumpers. Plus, others may also be able to fly. And missiles? Ah, but sure you know all the classic counters, magic and mundane, against a simple fly effect.

and Dimension Door (level 7) is Verbal-only free ticket out of grapple; as you can only grapple a Wizard on the first turn of grapple, there's no way to stop him from casting it.

Oh there is...let us see
- the wizard gets grappled in the surprise round and then loses initiative, meaning a pin
- the wizard gets pounced by an animal/magical beast/other creature with improved grab and is then pinned.
- the wizard gets stunned in the first round and then is pinned
- the wizard gets grappled by somebody with a silence spell on him
etc.
all low-mid-level tactics, both mundane and magic. And remarkably effective even at high levels.

In a party, a Wizard can allow the level 1 party to win encounters it would otherwise have no chance against (basically any big brute, say a couple of Ogres or some such; melee has no chance but a Wizard has the power to save the party) while the Monk deals 1d6+3 or so damage at +3 (touch + grapple-check or normal attack) vs. Fighter/Barbarian dealing 2d6+4-9 (Orc Barbarian can go as high as 2d6+12 at +9 to attack; thrice per day with Extra Rage from Complete Warrior).

That all core classes can contribute at level 1 with some specialty of theirs to solve encounters that otherwise the party would have difficulties is obvious. That is not a wizard forte (who does not even enough enough 1st level spells for the four encounters average at level 1).
And it is nice that somehow an obscure non-race monk with 1d6+3 is compared to an orc fighter or barbarian.
A first level orc monk can do something the barbarian cannot hope to emulate:
- take improved grapple at level 1 and
- have higher STR since he can only focus on STR.
While the orc barbarian does more damage with his weapon, he'd have no chance vs the orc monk in a direct duel, nor does he have any of the stealth skills of the orc monk. (and good saves besides).
(see also below at the bottom of this post for a more concrete example)

Now for that solar thing...

You need to reach an opponent with 150' Good fly. That can't happen unless you somehow surprise it. Also, if the Solar has spells on, it'll easily have AC 60 (Magic Vestment on cloth, Monk's Belt, stat boosters or Magic Vestment on armor + animated shield), Fort-save goes to +25-27 with items (Monk maxes out at 34 Wis in Core, giving him DC 10+12+10+2 = 34 Fort save DC with Ability Focus meaning it's under 50% even if you hit), and that's if the Monk somehow reaches the Solar and hits (which, let's face it, isn't gonna happen; to get that high Stunning Fist DC, you need to dump all ability bumps to Wis leaving you with max of 29 Str, and that's with an 18 to start with meaning you've got 2 18s already, again something that's not gonna happen; and even with 29 in Str, a Monk only has +29 to hit from 15 BAB, +9 Str, +5 weapon meaning he only hits on natural 20s). Let's not waste any more time on this.

OK.
A level 20 orc monk has BAB 15/15/15/10/5. Starting stats with 28-point-buy are STR 16, DEX 14, CON 12, INT 8, WIS 12, CHR 6
STR at lvl 20 is 38 (5 stat gains, 5 inherent, +6 STR belt, +4 racial, +2 permanent enlarge, cast before lvl 20 attained). DEX at 20 (2 inherent, +6 gloves, -2 size) and WIS at 20 (+6 amulet).
Feats (monk): Improved Unarmed Strike, Improved Grapple, Combat Reflexes, Improved Trip
Feats ( lvl): Improved Initiative, Weapon Focus unarmed, Improved Natural Attack, TWF, Stunning Fist, ITWF, GTWF.
Key Items (other than those mentioned): wand of heroism (lvl 20), luck stone, boots of speed, wand of mage armour (lvl 20), wand of greater magic weapon (lvl 20), wings of flying, robe of blending, cloak of protection +5, ring of deflection +5, ring of counterspell - greater dispel magic, gauntlet +5, , wand of silence, circlet of persuasion, eyes of the eagle, gem of true seeing, pale green ioun stone, masterwork items for all relevant skills.
Max hide & spot & UMD.

Sneak up on solar which will likely not be able to notice the silenced monk before the other way round (monk 26 spot from 120ft - outside true seeing range - vs +26 hide of solar, the other way round is 20 solar spot vs monk's +39 hide).
Monk can partial charge in surprise round from 125ft away (outside true seeint range, the only class able to do that). Attacks first, likely trips (vs neglible touch AC and +24 vs the solar's +13) with stunning fist and quivering palm on top (DC 24 and DC 22 respectively).
Then, provided the solar makes the first two saves, 9 more attacks follow in the first round (initiative bonus of +11 higher than that of the solar).
Attack bonus in the surprise round:
15 (BAB) +14 (STR) +5 (enhance) +2 (morale) +1 (weapon focus) +1 (haste) +1 (luck) +1 (competence) +4 (vs prone) +2 charge -1 size = +45.
The full attack in round 1 (including another stunning fist DC 24) is:
15 (BAB) +14 (STR) +5 (enhance) +2 (morale) +1 (weapon focus) +1 (haste) +1 (luck) +1 (competence) +4 (vs prone) -1 size -2 TWF =
+41/+41/+41/+41/+41/+36/+36/+31/+31
Now, the solar has a flat-footed AC of 30 (35 - DEX)
Then, it might when armoured for war have a mithral breastplate (for max normal DEX effect) and mithral buckler (for use with archery). Both enhanced at +5 with magic vestment spells.
(note: Animated +5 and rings of protection would be a quite bit coincidence for random treasure - imo it would be a big stretch to assume a "tough" encounter as per DMG when you equip the monster with most of specially chosen treasure.)
So that's a total of AC 46 (not 60, as you assumed).
Now...damage per hit is 6d8+19. Deduct the epic DR of 15 from each hit, and you get average 31.
Then simply add up the chances to hit for
0.95+5*0.8+2*0.55+2*0.3=6.65
6.65*31=206. Quite close to the solar's total. Now factor in the more than 50% probability that the solar will with its fort +18 miss one of the three save-or-such/dies of the monk's special attacks and you'll see the solar probably losing, before it can even act, much less cast all its many spells.

And there is not even a buff round close to combat so far. Once divine power enters the picture on the side of the monk, the solar gets annhilated. A CR 23 creature. By a level 20 core monk.
Now show how the core level 20 druid does it. (and no morhping cheese, either, please :smallbiggrin:)

Monk may be fast, but Solar is still much, much faster and has natural flight. And Monk's fortitude-saves don't matter; you'll fail one eventually as it has infinite shots. Also, the damage adds up over time. Monk can fly with items, but not as fast and the Solar can simply Dispel Monk's flight any number of times.

As seen above, all of this does not necessarily matter.

It's pretty much implied that UA Swordsage recieves Monk's "Unarmed Strike"-ability. If not, whooppedoo, dip two levels of Monk and continue with Unarmed Swordsage levels. But really, Unarmed Swordsage is so universally embraced specifically because it is what Monk was supposed to be. It does everything you'd expect out of your mystical martial artist.

Unfortunately, the swordsage with just this one ToB (p.20) sentence fails:
"To create a monklike character with a tremendous array of fantastic moves and strikes, give the swordsage the monk's unarmed strike progression and remove his light armour proficiency."
That's not the stuff strong classes are made of, I'm afraid.
- swordsage has to spend his first feats to even get improved unarmed strike and light armour proficiency (otherwise the WIS to his AC does not work)
- swordsage has no flurry of blows, no bonus feats (except weapon focus) and is outgrappled by just about everybody. In fact, the moment he gets grappled, he can't use most of his maneuvers any more
- all monk items (monk's belt) or feats and prestige clases that refer to monk are not there for the swordsage. Those will have to be housruled
etc.

You can pick the feats, but what good does that do for you if your bonuses are still negative, your AC is 9, etc.? Nobody cares which class works better with all 8s (out of core, Druid btw 'cause your Animal Companion is still at full power and you'll get Wildshape soon enough; a Riding Dog is a much better addition to a party than an all-8s Monk, and the Druid can just pick a Tower Shield and hide behind it for his life).

An AC of 9 can become mightily negligible the moment the monk grapples :smallsmile:
And true, the animal companion shines in a pc-with-only-8s-in-abilities world. Druid is strongest then, followed by the monk :smallcool:

Let's discuss the point: Monk is MAD. You need Dex and Wis for AC (you need 16 in both to match a Dex 14 Fighter or Barbarian with a Scalemail, and they'll quickly get better armor in Breastplate/Full-Plate and eventually Mithril-versions while you won't improve your AC before you get stat boosters),

Wand of mage armour. Or pearl of power and mage armour from party arcane caster.

Str to hit and damage (especially since you have medium BAB, you definitely need 18 in your attack stat to hit),

Not when using touch attacks...

Con for HP (you have d8 HD as a frontliner, so you'll want 16+ to match Fighter) and Int if you want to make good out of your skill list. Oh, and Charisma if you want to Use Magic Device.

CHR 8 is completely sufficient, as I have shown many times.
CON tends to suffer with fighters wishing to have high STR and DEX as well.

Monk with the usual caster-spread of 18-14-14 (28pb) can get +4 to attack and 1d6+6 damage (by doublewielding a Quarterstaff) and AC 14. 7 hitpoints first level, 3.5 more per level. A Fighter with those can get +5 to attack, AC 16, 12 HP to start with and 7.5 per level. Monk has better Will-saves. But that won't stop him from dying a horrible pummely doom before Will-saves become an issue. Alternatively, you could have 16 AC and +2 to attacks. Or 10 HP and AC 12. You need to drop the 18 in Str to 16 and get 14 Con, in which case you lose any semblance of decent attack you had.

You forget grapple in your comparison. And a caster putting 8s in STR, CHR and WIS leaves holes in his defenses.

You need 4 high stats unless you burn your feats to compare to other characters with 3 high stats, and 5 to push your advantage.

You only "need" to focus on one high stat, just like everyone else.

And Weapon Finesse would mean you won't deal damage without ToB and a bunch of levels (in which case a Swordsage does everything better). If you have Book of Exalted Deeds and pick up Intuitive Attack, you can indeed do decently with Stunning Fist, but you won't deal damage. And at that point, the only thing you can do is target Fort-saves a few times per day (once at level 1).

Again: check out what size stacking does for monk damage.

So yeah, 4 stats in Str/Dex/Con/Wis vs. other characters' 3. That's the problem. That's why Monk is MAD. The feats have nothing to do with it. Show me a 3-stat level 1 Monk that matches a simple level 1 Fighter or Barbarian in standard combat.

Level 1 orc, 18 STR, DEX 14, CON 14. Rest 8s (before racial adj). Wears chain shirt (nobody says a monk cannot wear armour, in this case it's OK until flurry gets better, he gets a movement bonus and since he has no WIS bonus).
Takes improved grapple, improved initiative (+6)
Charges, STR 22, means +8 vs touch AC, grapples with +10 check. Dmg 1d6+6.
This orc is likely going to beat same level orc barbarian. Once enlarge potions and effects get more abundant even in level 1, the orc monk also outclasses the fighter in this respect (who likely cannot keep improved grapple when being enlarged). Both barbarian and fighter also do less damage in a grapple.

End of Part III.

Sir Giacomo
2009-06-08, 07:11 PM
Hmm.. Instead of part 4 of posts, I'll answer to individual posts right now as much as I can...am getting a bit tired and may stop posting any moment...


I'm curious as to what exactly the wand monk can do that, say, a rogue of similar level can't? Every class can pick up UMD and use wands, so what's so great about it when a monk does it?

Well, a rogue COULD use a wand of enlarge, but what good will it gain him? He gets -4 to hide, -2 to DEX (his major stat), so of course the monk will make better use out of that particular buff.

Being better at UMD for using wands hardly matters. The bonus to reach is +19 for auto-activating a wand. That's all - and it can be even done cross-class with a CHR 8.

- Giacomo

Sir Giacomo
2009-06-08, 07:12 PM
I love Giacoposts.

They field a more persuasive case against the Monk than Sstoopid, Keld, Eldariel or the prolific poster of the week ever could.

Sure, when people refuse to read (in particular when hard evidence is presented against opinions they have formed just on a hunch) it can have that effect.:smallwink:

- Giacomo

Sir Giacomo
2009-06-08, 07:25 PM
Ah, this one I almost overlooked...


It's been done before.

1) Gia won't do 10 vs. 10 He'll do 11 vs. 11, or whichever point in the level curve the monk increases from his previous number of iterations of flurry of blows to the next step up.

Au contraire, I have repeatedly said that comparisons can be done at all levels (hence my guide detailing ALL levels 1-20 in core).
And you sure also know that most other classes will also gain a lot from advancing from lvl 10 to 11 (lvl 6 spells, more sneak dice, extra BAB attack...).


2) Gia won't agree to any books beyond the initial three of core, and has serious issues with people making use of the Monster Manual.

Again wrong. I only pointed out in my guide that comparisons make most sense when keeping them within core, since outside core wild things start to happen that make imo class balance comparions useless.
I mean, come on: wizards always going first and always getting the surprise when being in turtle form? monks doing 100d8 damage per hit or more? barbarians charging for a 1000 damage? pun-puns? etc.


3) Gia will insist that for the purposes of the fight, there are to be no prestige classes, and no multi-classing.

Yep here you are correct - when you wish to compare base classes, it makes sense not to play wild LA races, choose 5 prestige class combos and 6 other base classes.


He will then spend thirty pages bloviating as to how making use of tactics that kill an entire party that is not made of monks,

Yes, stealth is horrible for the party when rangers, rogues, monks, bards or scouts use it. Yup.


using imaginary Non-raw items,

I wonder which you mean - not partially charged wands, since there are about 50times more partially charged wands in any campaign than fully charged ones :smalltongue:


and heavily boosting cross-class skills makes the Monk a viable party member.

Almost everyone makes great use of a +19 UMD skill to auto-activate wands. Even a druid.:smallamused:
A pity that you cannot admit that.


EDIT: Note: None of this post attacks Giacomo as a person. Every point raised, every position noted is verifiable from his posting history.

Of course. Let me see...:smallamused:
...three statements that are completely wrong
...one statement stretched to leave a bad impression of what I post.
...one statement so confusing as to leave the reader wondering what is meant and
...one correct statement, but presented in way that leave it open whether the poster agrees.

But I still hope...that at one point or another you will see the error of your ways and join the cause of those who see monks as a useful class, balanced and fun to play.

- Giacomo

Dagren
2009-06-08, 07:27 PM
Hmm.. Instead of part 4 of posts, I'll answer to individual posts right now as much as I can...am getting a bit tired and may stop posting any moment...



Well, a rogue COULD use a wand of enlarge, but what good will it gain him? He gets -4 to hide, -2 to DEX (his major stat), so of course the monk will make better use out of that particular buff.

Being better at UMD for using wands hardly matters. The bonus to reach is +19 for auto-activating a wand. That's all - and it can be even done cross-class with a CHR 8.

- GiacomoYou realise that doesn't answer the question, right? What can the monk do that the rogue can't? The monk will also get -2 DEX and -4 hide. What's the difference?

Sir Giacomo
2009-06-08, 07:38 PM
Hi, GreatWyrmGold,

sorry- I guess I just jumped in a bit late with my more detailed comments on what has been said so far in this thread.
Let me try to answer your preliminary thread summary.


I lost my place, so I'll boil down the reasons it seems that the monk is disliked. If I missed any, let me know.

1. Monks are hard to break.People like infinite loops/3 characters for the price of one/1,004,943,976+ per round damage dealers, etc. The monk is none of those things.

The monk can be so made so broken it's painful. In visiting the WoTC boards alone I have seen quite awesome combos so far.
In core, polymorph stuff is most broken with monks since they can get the outsider forms at lvl 20 with polymorph any object and retain in all forms all of their combat and special abilities (including the size stacking to damage).


2. It looks better than it is.

Actually on a 2nd glance it looks worse than it is, because it requires some thinking to make use of all ability synergies, including those that apparently are not compatible with each other (like flurry and high movement).
Unfortunately, most players get deterred by the 2nd glance.


3. You can't enchant fists (your best weapon after a certain point, if it wasn't for this).

You can put enhancement bonuses onto the fists, though, even holy sword spell effects.
And you can use a gauntlet that transfers most unarmed strike special stuff (even stunning fist).


4. Many of the abilities are nigh-useless. Cue Tounge of Sun and Moon, slow fall, flurry of blows, etc.

They are often more powerful than apparent at first glance. The Tongue of Sun and Moon is better than tongues (that only allows to let you speak ONE language at a time), and includes even speak with animals and plants.


5. Its "best" strategy, Spring Attack, and another strategy, Flurry of Blows (or normal full attack), are sub-optimal. One decreases damage output amazingly while offering little defense against long-reach opponents, fast ones, ranged attacks, spells, etc; the other forces Mr. Monk to sacrifice his mobility.

The easiest answer for high levels when a monk will likely have fly effects up (or constant with wings of flying) is the feat flyby attack (much better than spring attack, and also without prereq feats).


6. It has no clear role in the party.

It mostly can have two roles: scout or melee fighter, often also both.


7. The ninja class, which is thematically similar enough for some people, is better for solo adventuring AND has a clear role (sneak) and few/none of the monk's other problems.

The monk is quite good for soloing (self-healing, stealthy, resilient on his own). I do not have the ninja class rules right here, though, so it is difficult for me to say.


Also, please PM me about what book the swordsage (and the unarmed varient of it) are if you know.

Tome of Battle. (see also my reply to Eldariel above).

@Tidesinger: I'll think on joining the test of spite. Possibly next week.

Good night to all.

- Giacomo

Faleldir
2009-06-08, 07:40 PM
Adding to Dagren's question, what can an Enlarged Monk do to a caster that an Enlarged Fighter/Knight/Crusader (yes, three base classes, deal with it) with the standard chain-tripper build, Mage Slayer and Thicket Of Blades can't do?

quick_comment
2009-06-08, 07:41 PM
The monk can be so made so broken it's painful. In visiting the WoTC boards alone I have seen quite awesome combos so far.
In core, polymorph stuff is most broken with monks since they can get the outsider forms at lvl 20 with polymorph any object and retain in all forms all of their combat and special abilities (including the size stacking to damage).

At level 20 shapechange is available.

Sir Giacomo
2009-06-08, 07:51 PM
You realise that doesn't answer the question, right? What can the monk do that the rogue can't? The monk will also get -2 DEX and -4 hide. What's the difference?

The difference is that the monk makes better use of that particular buff. Similarly, a mage armour buff is not as useful to the rogue who hardly loses anything by wearing light armour (just some movement skill penalties).

The rogue makes better use of other buffs and spell effects, like, possibly, reduce. Or grease (triggering sneaks possibly from the opponent).

Both can reach UMD +19 needed to auto-activate wands.

I hope it is clear now what I mean.

- Giacomo

Sir Giacomo
2009-06-08, 07:53 PM
At level 20 shapechange is available.

Lasting not as long. And the druid and wizard who get it as spells do not have as high base damage as the monk has. Their unarmed strike damage (if they have the feats) start from 1d3 (2d6 with superior unarmed strike), not 2d10 before size adjustment.
Similarly, for all other class abilities.

- Giacomo

Sir Giacomo
2009-06-08, 07:55 PM
Adding to Dagren's question, what can an Enlarged Monk do to a caster that an Enlarged Fighter/Knight/Crusader (yes, three base classes, deal with it) with the standard chain-tripper build, Mage Slayer and Thicket Of Blades can't do?

- faster movement
- better saves and SR
- better grapple without needing DEX 15+
- better trip without needing INT 13+
- better stunning fist (ki enhance in chain, for instance).
etc.

- Giacomo

quick_comment
2009-06-08, 07:56 PM
Lasting not as long. And the druid and wizard who get it as spells do not have as high base damage as the monk has. Their unarmed strike damage (if they have the feats) start from 1d3, not 2d10 before size adjustment.
Similarly, for all other class abilities.

- Giacomo

And why do they need unarmed strike damage when they can shapeshift into a balor and get a vorpal sword?

Sstoopidtallkid
2009-06-08, 08:15 PM
Giacomo, if you wish to prove something, enter the Test of Might with a party and see how you do. Heck, see how far a Monk goes in a Test of Spite. Or make a build, any level, any pt-buy, any reasonable list of restrictions, and post it. I will post a Druid that does your job better. Only restriction I want to make right now is that all expendables cost 5x and wands come with only 10 charges(as recommended by the DMG when making characters for only a single event).

And partially-charged wand exist. The problem is finding a wand that is useful enough that you want it, that someone else apparently found useful enough to buy and use for a while, then sell without finishing. Any magic item with full charges can be made-to-order, and are reasonable to be sitting in a shop waiting for a buyer. Partially-charged wands aren't.

Edit:And the point of my posting why the Druid with all 3's was better than a Monk with all 3s was that you said that a Monk was better with ridiculously low scores(as in below the PHB minimum that requires re-rolls, a level that RAW cannot come up in a game) than any other class. Obvious errors like that need to be dealt with, as in this case pointing out the fact that the Druid's pet comes with an array of 10/10/10/11/11/11 no matter what, and is CR1 at first level on it's own.

Dagren
2009-06-08, 08:18 PM
The difference is that the monk makes better use of that particular buff. Similarly, a mage armour buff is not as useful to the rogue who hardly loses anything by wearing light armour (just some movement skill penalties).

The rogue makes better use of other buffs and spell effects, like, possibly, reduce. Or grease (triggering sneaks possibly from the opponent).

Both can reach UMD +19 needed to auto-activate wands.

I hope it is clear now what I mean.

- GiacomoNope. Still doesn't answer the question: Why? What can the monk do with his wand that a rogue of similar level can't? Or a fighter of similar level do better? You're using a wand to compensate for the scale mail the fighter has had since first level. Why?

pseudodragon
2009-06-08, 08:20 PM
In essence, most of the things a monk can do can either be done as well - or better - by an equal level character of another class, and those features unique to the monk are not particularly useful to the party.

At the same time, a typical monk also has to pump at least four ability scores in order to be on par with other characters in combat.

The end result is basically that almost any other class will give rise to a better companion for an adventuring party.

A major example, just using the core rulebooks, is Abundant Step (1/day) - an 11th level character (Fighter/Ranger/Horizon Walker) can manage the same thing every d4 rounds. The following level, he can gain a flat immunity to any alignment-based effect, tremorsense, or another feat. At the same time, he is also using a spiked chain/guisarme/kusari-gama/glaive-glaive-guisarme-glaive or similar weapon and regularly tripping and carving up any opponent.

A monk can't compete with most of those.
ahh, but the monk can do ALL of those things, not just a few.

Prophaniti
2009-06-08, 08:21 PM
And why do they need unarmed strike damage when they can shapeshift into a balor and get a vorpal sword?
How does the incredible brokenness of the shape-shifting spells speak to the effectiveness of the monk's unarmed strike? Is fixing spellcasting somehow a less legitimate option than fixing weaker classes such as the fighter or monk?

Just wondering, because every serious re-think of 3.5 I've seen addresses the problems with shapeshifting spells and seems to think they're a higher priority than buffing up the monk.

TheCountAlucard
2009-06-08, 08:24 PM
Is fixing spellcasting somehow a less legitimate option than fixing weaker classes such as the fighter or monk?Yes. Yes, it is. With one, you're sprucing up a single character class. The other option involves revising pretty much the whole game system.

Prophaniti
2009-06-08, 08:31 PM
Yes. Yes, it is. With one, you're sprucing up a single character class. The other option involves revising pretty much the whole game system.
Not really. Most of the cheese I've read about with casters seem to stem from Summon or Shapeshift abuses. You don't have to revise the whole game system, but rather rewrite specific spell families. Casters can be brought down to the level of the other 3.5 classes without ever changing their actual class mechanics.

Don't get me wrong, I almost always use a monk fix when we're playing 3.5, but I almost always fix the more broken spells as well, and if I can only have one or the other for some reason, I'd fix the spells.