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Brauron
2009-08-12, 09:24 AM
How balanced are Thri-Keen for their LA? I'm thinking about playing one in an up-coming one-shot.

Fax Celestis
2009-08-12, 09:32 AM
Well, depending on your version, they're anywhere between 3rd and 5th level. The version found in the XPH is the most frequently used and is rather balanced for its cost.

Brauron
2009-08-12, 10:26 AM
Thanks. I'll have to look into the XPH version.

PinkysBrain
2009-08-12, 01:11 PM
Thri-Kreen aren't the problem ... MWF is the problem, the feat chain is hopelessly overpowered.

Irreverent Fool
2009-08-12, 07:50 PM
Thri-Kreen aren't the problem ... MWF is the problem, the feat chain is hopelessly overpowered.

Once again we come to the "it's okay for a spellcaster to kill something with one spell but it's not ok for a fighter-type to kill something with one full attack" argument.

obnoxious
sig

Draz74
2009-08-12, 08:23 PM
Thri-Kreen can be pretty ridiculously overpowered if you know what you're doing with them.

Thri-Kreen Warblade (or Swordsage). Max Concentration and Jump. Fight with four kukris, MWF, the Blood in the Water Stance, and whenever you can't use a full attack, use a Nightmare Blade or a Jump-based Strike. Yikes. This general build is a great melee combatant even with a normal race (like Human), using two kukris; adding two more kukris and a +30 bonus to Jump checks just gets crazy, even with the RHD and LA that slow you down.

Brauron
2009-08-12, 08:26 PM
Ah, thanks, but I don't play with an optimization-heavy group, and we don't use ToB. I was thinking I'd make a Ranger...

See, I like using more unusual races because I find it presents some fun roleplaying opportunities, but my characters are sometimes met with skepticism by my friends, who are sometimes uneasy about monster races.

Biffoniacus_Furiou
2009-08-12, 08:37 PM
I'd prefer the nonpsionic version in MM2 and Shining South. It still has 2 HD, but only gets a +1 LA compared to the XPH version's +2 LA. That makes it quite a bit more playable, and all you lose out on are the psi-like abilities and racial powerpoints.

As far as how balanced the race is, even if you use the lower ECL nonpsionic version, you'll be pigeonholed into one of the weaker classes. It's at least three levels behind if you go with a primary spellcaster, and everyone should know nonspellcasters are underpowered as it is. As a martial adept it could be useful, but you'd lose out on all those arms using standard action maneuvers. I'd probably go with either dual-wielding two-handed weapons with Oversized TWF and Xing Mongoose, or make a Soulbow (http://wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/ex/20060403a&page=2) with a dip in Monk or Swordsage and Zen Archery, using Multiweapon Fighting with Mind Arrows.

Improved and Greater Multiweapon Fighting are not overpowered. This is especially true considering they require a +9 and +15 BAB respectively, compared to the +6 and +11 required by Improved and Greater TWF.

aje8
2009-08-12, 09:00 PM
Thri-Keen are not overpowered. LA is by defination not overpowered because it's never right for casters to take LA and if the LA is making a melee character significantly more powerful, that's a good thing.

Yes, that's a slight exageration but for the most part it's true.

PId6
2009-08-12, 09:08 PM
Thri-Keen are not overpowered. LA is by defination not overpowered because it's never right for casters to take LA and if the LA is making a melee character significantly more powerful, that's a good thing.

Yes, that's a slight exageration but for the most part it's true.
Black Ethergaunt: LA +4, +20 Int, and ability to cast spells like a 17th level wizard, not to mention a whole set of other broken abilities. 9th level spells at 5th level, anyone?

NEO|Phyte
2009-08-12, 09:11 PM
Black Ethergaunt: LA +4, +20 Int, and ability to cast spells like a 17th level wizard, not to mention a whole set of other broken abilities. 9th level spells at 5th level, anyone?

I suspect you're forgetting the racial hit dice. You don't get to ignore those.

PId6
2009-08-12, 09:13 PM
I suspect you're forgetting the racial hit dice. You don't get to ignore those.
Whoops, okay, still, level 20 for 17th level wizard spells and +20 Int is totally worth it.

FMArthur
2009-08-12, 09:20 PM
LA and racial hit dice are usually bad, but what makes them bad is that they get increasingly worse in comparison to class features that increase in power. If you're following a class that just gets more class features without much increase in their power later on, then it becomes more worthwhile. In fact, it is a giant boost in power early on that is only mitigated later; thri-kreen can be preposterously strong at low levels when melee combat can still be relied upon as an effecient means of dealing with threats. And two extra arms can often simply double the power of any two-weapon fighter. I know I'd take a PrC that was just three dead levels followed by a flat "you make twice as many attacks" class feature if I was going in that direction anyway.

Kelpstrand
2009-08-12, 09:22 PM
Once again we come to the "it's okay for a spellcaster to kill something with one spell but it's not ok for a fighter-type to kill something with one full attack" argument.

I know fighters can't get nice things, I make sure my homebrew give fighters nice things, or use homebrew that does, but too often people think the solution to save or die spells is to make it so that Fighters kill in one full attack, that's a terrible answer, a spell requires a failed saving throw, and often is subject to a host of immunities. A Pouncing Barbarian does 400 damage on each attack of many, and has an AB that makes it an auto hit against all monsters in the MM.

Fighters can have nice things without those nice things being "you die if I can ever make a single attack on you that hits."

MWFing giving a character enough attacks to kill in one full attack is a problem, because AB is usually higher than, or 3-4 points lower than AC, but saves are often just too high for monsters to fail more than 10-30% of the time.

Wizards can't kill with one spell, they can kill with 2-3 spells, so fighters need to not be able to kill everything in one full attack.


Improved and Greater Multiweapon Fighting are not overpowered. This is especially true considering they require a +9 and +15 BAB respectively, compared to the +6 and +11 required by Improved and Greater TWF.

Actually, yes it is overpowered, in some select screwed up ways. Normally, like a Thri-Keen using a weapon in 4 hands, is not a big deal.

It's the fact that it doesn't limit your "offhand" weapons to your number of hands, so it's technically possible to full attack weapon on each hand, boot blade on each foot, elbow blades on each elbow, armor spikes, shield spikes on your buckler, knee blades, and just in case your DM hasn't said no yet, you can fish out hair blades, and tie one to each hair on you head for another few thousand attacks.

It's only the wording of MWF that's the problem, not people fighting with X hands.


Black Ethergaunt: LA +4, +20 Int, and ability to cast spells like a 17th level wizard, not to mention a whole set of other broken abilities. 9th level spells at 5th level, anyone?

You forgot the 20 racial HD to go with it. Not overpowered for a level 25 character.

ericgrau
2009-08-12, 09:44 PM
Once again we come to the "it's okay for a spellcaster to kill something with one spell but it's not ok for a fighter-type to kill something with one full attack" argument.

obnoxious
sig

I don't believe he said it was ok for a caster to kill something with one spell. I don't buy the argument of "Casters can do anything so feel free to allow any non-caster you want no matter how much stronger he is than other non-casters."

Last I checked a well built but cheese free caster has roughly a 50% chance for a spell to succeed on a target, give or take 10-20% depending on target's power, which save is targetted, etc. So it takes 2 rounds & 2 spells, maybe more or less depending on the challenge. But it wouldn't matter even if casters got wish as a free action, at will, with no xp cost at level 10. That's still no reason to allow anything in the world. That'd just be a reason for the DM to watch the caster for abuse ("hey wait, that ability description doesn't actually say you can do that") and/or nerf him.

Sstoopidtallkid
2009-08-12, 09:46 PM
I don't believe he said it was ok for a caster to kill something with one spell. I don't buy the argument of "Casters can do anything so feel free to allow any non-caster you want no matter how much stronger he is than others."

Last I checked a well built but cheese free caster has roughly a 50% chance for a spell to succeed on a target, give or take 10-20% depending on target's power, which save is targetted, etc. So it takes 2 rounds & 2 spells, maybe more or less depending on the challenge. But it wouldn't matter even if casters got wish as a free action, at will, with no xp cost at level 10. That's still no reason to allow anything in the world. That'd just be a reason for the DM to watch the caster for abuse ("hey wait, that ability description doesn't actually say you can do that") and/or nerf him.Enervation. What are these 'saves' you speak of?

Cieyrin
2009-08-12, 10:52 PM
Thri-kreens with a pair of gythka works pretty well, I'd say. 1d10/1d10 double weapons are pretty hot.

DMs letting you run around like Zolo the Swordsman w/ blades coming from every joint is only bringing pain on himself for letting a character roll that many dice on a full attack, especially given how many of them are gonna miss, since most of the weapons mentioned in Kelp's post have inherent penalties to their attack to help ensure that they aren't going to hit, anyways. What I worry about more is if they get the feat Multitasking (http://realmshelps.dandello.net/cgi-bin/feats.pl?Multitasking,SS), which is admittedly difficult to get on a Thri-kreen w/ their Int penalty, but more actions per round is always powerful.

aje8
2009-08-12, 10:53 PM
Look, I'd rather not turn this into a casters are overpowered argument.

BUT one quick thing. Save-or-dies are not and never will be the best spells, they're pretty good if you pump the save DCs ect. but for the most part they aren't sepectacular. The best spells are and have always been spells that do stuff on a failed or save or even don't allow a save. Black Tentacles, Solid Fog ect are the best spells.

I'm not talking about getting cheesetastic here..... casters are just so much better than melee, espically non-ToB melee, that they can play their Half-Minatour Feral Fighter using every splatbook imaginable and with a billion dips. My CORE Wizard 20 will be more powerful every time.

Though your right it's not grounds to allow anything per se, it is grounds to allow anything printed so far.

quick_comment
2009-08-12, 10:53 PM
Thri-keen are also awesome with the tiger claw maneuvers, with their massive jump checks

Kelpstrand
2009-08-12, 11:05 PM
Enervation. What are these 'saves' you speak of?

But if you spend a standard action and a spell slot to change their saves from 50% chance of success to 35% chance of success that's really similar to casting the spell twice when they have a 50% chance.

It's better in some ways, like it might be a lower spell level than the save or X, it might also be worse, in that they could be immune to it, or you could miss the RTA (really only for high touch AC monsters, which are few) Or you could hit them, but they roll high on their one roll.

Enervation + save spell is good, but by no means actually fits the "casters kill everything in one round" complaint.

Sstoopidtallkid
2009-08-12, 11:12 PM
But if you spend a standard action and a spell slot to change their saves from 50% chance of success to 35% chance of success that's really similar to casting the spell twice when they have a 50% chance.

It's better in some ways, like it might be a lower spell level than the save or X, it might also be worse, in that they could be immune to it, or you could miss the RTA (really only for high touch AC monsters, which are few) Or you could hit them, but they roll high on their one roll.

Enervation + save spell is good, but by no means actually fits the "casters kill everything in one round" complaint.I meant Enervation+death. The spell applies penalties to everything, not just saves, and works well with metamagic.

Alteran
2009-08-12, 11:20 PM
Enervation + save spell is good, but by no means actually fits the "casters kill everything in one round" complaint.

Not at all. As a 4th level spell, Enervation is a prime candidate for metamagic abuse. Arcane Thesis (Enervation) combined with Easy Metamagic (Twin Spell) lets you have a Twinned Split Empowered Enervation as a 9th level spell. That's 4 rays, each dealing 1d4 * 1.5 negative levels. That averages out to 15 negative levels if they all hit. With a Greater Rod of Maximize Spell or Sudden Maximize, it's 16 + 2d4, or an average of 21 negative levels. That kills anything with 21 or fewer HD without a save, and it can be done as low as level 17.

Edit: I was wrong, you can actually have a Twinned Split Maximzed Enervation as a 9th level spell. With a Greater Rod of Empower Spell or Sudden Empower that gets the same end result, but if you buy the rod then you're spending less money. You also inflict 16 negative levels with just the base spell, so along with a Quickened Maximized Enervation (spell level 9) you can kill anything with 20 HD or fewer, no items required.

Brauron
2009-08-12, 11:29 PM
It's amazing to see where my one little question has led.

Kelpstrand
2009-08-12, 11:33 PM
I meant Enervation+death. The spell applies penalties to everything, not just saves, and works well with metamagic.

Right, and how is the creature dieing? Either you crippled the creature to make it easier for someone else to kill it, and did the Wizard job well. Or you did an Enervation to set up your kill spell, in which case, you took more than one round and had to deal with multiple potential defenses in order to get it:

Touch AC/Immunity to negative energy or death effects/making the save even after the penalty/being immune to the spell being used to kill.

As such, a Fighter that pretty much auto hits like most well built fighters do, and who does enough damage in one round to kill most anything, is in fact a problem for the game.


Not at all. As a 4th level spell, Enervation is a prime candidate for metamagic abuse.

Yes Enervation can be part of a screwed up metamagic abuse involving Arcane Thesis and every other reduction you can find. So can Ray of Stupidity. So can Orb of Fire.

That's a problem with metamagic: (really crappy if used as it should, really awesome if made to not effect spell levels)

It has no bearing whatsoever on the fact that Wizards don't get to go around killing things in one round unless they optimize for specific super cheesy tactics, and non casters can do the same thing, it's called Shocktrooper Pouncing charges.

It doesn't change the fact that 90% of caster builds can't have even a very good chance of killing something in one round, much less an assured, and so the vast majority of the time, in a non cheesy game, it would be bad if the fighter did elevendy billion damage on a full attack.

Lycanthromancer
2009-08-13, 12:35 AM
Right, and how is the creature dieing?

If (NegativeLevels == CreatureHD)
..Creature = DEATH
Else (Creature = GIMPED)
EndIf

Biffoniacus_Furiou
2009-08-13, 12:43 AM
Actually, yes it is overpowered, in some select screwed up ways. Normally, like a Thri-Keen using a weapon in 4 hands, is not a big deal.

It's the fact that it doesn't limit your "offhand" weapons to your number of hands, so it's technically possible to full attack weapon on each hand, boot blade on each foot, elbow blades on each elbow, armor spikes, shield spikes on your buckler, knee blades, and just in case your DM hasn't said no yet, you can fish out hair blades, and tie one to each hair on you head for another few thousand attacks.

It's only the wording of MWF that's the problem, not people fighting with X hands.

Overpowered means potentially game-breaking when used as intended. If an exploitation of its poor wording has potential of making a character overpowered, then the feat is broken in that it needs to be fixed, not that it needs to be rebalanced. In that case, you won't even get away with any of those shenanigans if your DM is any semblance of competent and it is not even an issue. Multiweapon Fighting is not overpowered, and exploiting its poor wording should never even work in an actual game.

FMArthur
2009-08-13, 12:44 AM
It has no bearing whatsoever on the fact that Wizards don't get to go around killing things in one round unless they optimize for specific super cheesy tactics, and non casters can do the same thing, it's called Shocktrooper Pouncing charges.

It doesn't change the fact that 90% of caster builds can't have even a very good chance of killing something in one round, much less an assured, and so the vast majority of the time, in a non cheesy game, it would be bad if the fighter did elevendy billion damage on a full attack.

Wizards can do stupidly powerful AOE encounter-enders, though. A single casting of Color Spray, Glitterdust, Stinking Cloud, Evard's Black Tentacles, or others at the appropriate levels is enough for the wizard to want to waste spell slots on conjuring a lawn chair and a drink for the rest of the battle. Worse yet, if the beatstick does not have a properly optimized build, it can be outdone at its own damned job by summoning spells!

I will admit that it can be a fine line to walk - there is a difference between effective build strategy and abuse of the system, but if you're going to be a fighter-type, you usually have to specialize to not suck; you should be good at what you do if it's the only thing you do.

Kelpstrand
2009-08-13, 12:55 AM
If NegativeLevels == CreatureHD
..Creature = DEATH
Else Creature = GIMPED
EndIf

Once again:
If Enervation -> Negativelevels == CreatureHD
...Creature == Not even worth a 4th level slot ///They asterisk the weirdest things///
If Creature == Gimped
...Wizard == Not killing in one round.


Wizards can do stupidly powerful AOE encounter-enders, though. A single casting of Color Spray, Glitterdust, Stinking Cloud, Evard's Black Tentacles, or others at the appropriate levels is enough for the wizard to want to waste spell slots on conjuring a lawn chair and a drink for the rest of the battle. Worse yet, if the beatstick does not have a properly optimized build, it can be outdone at its own damned job by summoning spells!

And all AoE encounter enders still require mop up by fighters, or by spending more spells. (Except Color Spray, but Fighters at level 1 are casting "Death, no Save" anyway.) And all of those except EBT require saving throws, which once again, are about a 50-50 bargain. EBT has it's own set of problems, since by the time you get it, most creatures are large or larger and have Str+BAB greater than CL+4, and so they have a greater than 50% chance to just not be grappled, in which case all you did was cast "Difficult Terrain."

No one is saying that Fighters get nice things here. The point is that it's really easy to overcompensate on giving Fighters nice but specific things, so that every fight either involves the Fighter being a badass while everyone else watches, or a monster that defeats the Fighters one trick, and the Fighter still has no nice things.

If you just give the Fighter infinite damage on a charge or full attack, all you did was say that 50% of monster have to not ever be full attacked or charged for the game to have any meaning.

CockroachTeaParty
2009-08-13, 12:56 AM
I played a Thri-Kreen warblade in a game once. It was good times. The +30 to jump pretty much makes Tiger Claw the best. The 'jump as a swift action' maneuver in particular was delicious.

Unfortunately, with a Charisma of 4 and an Intelligence of 7, I was not the most sociable of creatures. My fellow players referred to me as 'the jump check,' rather than my character's actual name. This... hurt me.

Lycanthromancer
2009-08-13, 01:20 AM
Once again:
If Enervation -> Negativelevels == CreatureHD
...Creature == Not even worth a 4th level slot ///They asterisk the weirdest things///
If Creature == Gimped
...Wizard == Not killing in one round.

And yet even if you ain'tent dead, having more than half your levels being taken down pretty much destroys any credibility you might have as an actual threat. In comes the wizard's familiar to mop up the encounter. (Hyperbole? Maybe.)


And all AoE encounter enders still require mop up by fighters, or by spending more spells. (Except Color Spray, but Fighters at level 1 are casting "Death, no Save" anyway.)

That's what insta-minion spells are for. Like animate dead or planar binding. Spend those slots ahead of time and you can have all the minions you like.

And even if it takes more than a single spell slot to obliterate an encounter, wizards have all the spells they could possibly use at or before level 10 in any case.

It's easy enough to take down several days' worth of encounters without even using up half of a core-only wizard's higher level spells. Or by simply using some prep-work to make yourself a whirlwind of destruction beforehand and end encounters without using ANY of the current day's resources.


And all of those except EBT require saving throws, which once again, are about a 50-50 bargain. EBT has it's own set of problems, since by the time you get it, most creatures are large or larger and have Str+BAB greater than CL+4, and so they have a greater than 50% chance to just not be grappled, in which case all you did was cast "Difficult Terrain."

Remember that you can choose which save you want to target (assuming you want to target a save at all). Most big dumb beasties have horrific Will saves, for instance. Or terrible touch ACs.

That's one of the best (read: worst) things about wizards: they can zero in on your most glaring weakness and exploit it for all they're worth.


No one is saying that Fighters get nice things here. The point is that it's really easy to overcompensate on giving Fighters nice but specific things, so that every fight either involves the Fighter being a badass while everyone else watches, or a monster that defeats the Fighters one trick, and the Fighter still has no nice things.

Quite correct.


If you just give the Fighter infinite damage on a charge or full attack, all you did was say that 50% of monster have to not ever be full attacked or charged for the game to have any meaning.

Damage really isn't why fighters are so piss-poor. They're GOOD at dealing damage. Unfortunately, that's really ALL they're good for.

Bob the Urgh
2009-08-13, 01:35 AM
whoa, off topic. I always wanted to play a thri-keen... Just don't abuse the feat, it all depends on gaming group standards.

Kelpstrand
2009-08-13, 11:08 AM
First of: BLARGALARARARLGGARA

Why is everyone's response to "Wizard's don't rape the CR system in the face." to explain to me how to play a Wizard that I already know?

I know how to play Wizards, my Wizards are no incompetent, my Wizards are awesome, none the less, CR appropriate monster are also awesome, and Wizards need a party, short of cheesetastic abuse.


And yet even if you ain'tent dead, having more than half your levels being taken down pretty much destroys any credibility you might have as an actual threat. In comes the wizard's familiar to mop up the encounter. (Hyperbole? Maybe.)

Hyperbole? Try complete bull****. You get Enervation at level 7. Here is a list of CR seven monster HD: 8, 16, 16, 13, 12, 9, 12, 8, 9, 11, 11, 6, 6, 8, 10, 12, 9, 6, 16, 11, 16, 6, 12, 11, 9, 8, 7, 6, 8, 10, 7, 6, 8, 10, 15, 13, 7, 13, 7, 16.

Now, ignoring for a moment that many that are straight up immune to enervation, Enervation does on average 2.5 negative levels. This is not half the HD of even a single CR 7 monster, so if you are using your highest level spell slot, you still aren't killing or even crippling them. Literally every single one of these monster could be hit by an enervation that rolls a 4 and then kill your familiar and you in melee combat if you don't cast any more spells, even the ones that don't actually do melee, because they have SLAs.

CR 7 monsters are all still a threat after being hit by enervation. Some of them aren't a threat to Barbarians, some are still a threat to both you and Barbarians.

And as the CR goes up, Enervation means less and less. Try telling me that enervation cripples a CR 10 enemy, or CR 13, see how that goes.


That's what insta-minion spells are for. Like animate dead or planar binding. Spend those slots ahead of time and you can have all the minions you like.

They are not instant minion spells, Planar binding requires days of down time to even be worth it, and still doesn't get you more than a Cohort for a single fight, not to mention only coming online at level 10.

Animate Dead requires Corpses, and while you can find some awesome ones sometimes, you can also not find some awesome ones ever and be dealing with crap. Even the good ones still aren't a match for a Rogue who follows you around and full attacks on command.


And even if it takes more than a single spell slot to obliterate an encounter, wizards have all the spells they could possibly use at or before level 10 in any case.

Once again, still not complaining about Wizards running out of spells. Talking about how Wizards don't automatically win combats in a single round. They make fights winnable for the party, they do not win fights. And even making fights winnable is done often in two or three rounds.


It's easy enough to take down several days' worth of encounters without even using up half of a core-only wizard's higher level spells. Or by simply using some prep-work to make yourself a whirlwind of destruction beforehand and end encounters without using ANY of the current day's resources.

No, it's actually impossible. A level 13 Wizard cannot use low level spells to take down:

An Ice Devil (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/monsters/devil.htm#iceDevilGelugon)
A Storm Giant (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/monsters/giant.htm#stormGiant)
A Pair of Elder Air Elementals (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/monsters/elemental.htm#airElemental)
A Adult White Dragon (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/monsters/dragonTrue.htm#whiteDragon) and it's Frost Worm (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/monsters/frostWorm.htm) Pet, guarding it's horde.

And that's a single days worth of encounters.


Remember that you can choose which save you want to target (assuming you want to target a save at all). Most big dumb beasties have horrific Will saves, for instance. Or terrible touch ACs.

Stop giving me Wizard advice. I know how to play Wizards. But it doesn't matter how terrible a Frost Worms will saves and touch ACs are when it is virtually guaranteed a surprise round, and you can't kill it safely because of Death throes, and it's only half of the encounter and the other half is a dragon.


Damage really isn't why fighters are so piss-poor. They're GOOD at dealing damage. Unfortunately, that's really ALL they're good for.

BLAGARARARARGAGAGR I know why Fighters are and aren't poor. My entire point from the beginning was that the solution to fighters sucking is to not make them do crap tons of damage because that just makes them still suck or be too good.

Stop being a condescending jerk who does nothing but talk to someone who isn't even here.

Brauron
2009-08-13, 11:15 AM
I just wanted to play a Thri-Keen ranger...

Kelpstrand
2009-08-13, 11:18 AM
I just wanted to play a Thri-Keen ranger...

Ask for multi weapon in place of TWFing for the path.

NEO|Phyte
2009-08-13, 11:22 AM
Ask for multi weapon in place of TWFing for the path.

Depending on how one reads "Special
This feat replaces the Two-Weapon Fighting feat for creatures with more than two arms. ", such a ruling may not be required.

Cieyrin
2009-08-13, 11:50 AM
Yes, I agree that the Wizard fight is getting out of hand and doesn't belong in this thread. Take it elsewhere, please.

Anyways, the Thri-Kreen ranger also gives you the unique opportunity to try your hand at multibow combat. A thri-kreen with a pair of composite long bows is most definitely a ranged threat, especially with those Str and Dex bonuses and the movement possibilities with getting out of reach to continue your ranged barage.

Also think about wielding one two-handed (err, 4-handed? yeah, whatever...) weapon, as if we follow Savage Species, you can get 2.5 Strength to damage, which is a pretty sweet alternative to the multiweapon conundrum. I think it costs more to give it enough handle for you to grab with all 4 hands but nothing appreciably out there to prevent a Thri-kreen with a single class level from going for it.

Them's my 2 gythkas. Take as you will.

Fax Celestis
2009-08-13, 12:02 PM
Also think about wielding one two-handed (err, 4-handed? yeah, whatever...) weapon, as if we follow Savage Species, you can get 2.5 Strength to damage, which is a pretty sweet alternative to the multiweapon conundrum. I think it costs more to give it enough handle for you to grab with all 4 hands but nothing appreciably out there to prevent a Thri-kreen with a single class level from going for it.

...or wield two greatswords two-handed and take the TWF combat style. It's TWO TWO TWO TUESDAY.

HamHam
2009-08-13, 12:03 PM
Now, ignoring for a moment that many that are straight up immune to enervation, Enervation does on average 2.5 negative levels.

Which scales quickly with application of metamagic, especially since Empower and Maximize are the only ones that don't stack.

Split Ray up it to 5. Empower to 3.5(ish?). Combined that's 7. Now Twin it to make it 14. Of the three CR 20 monsters in the MM, only the Tarrasque is not utterly raped by this (since it has 48 HD) but even then that's -14 to all saves, -30 HP, -14 to attacks, etc.

And with Arcane Thesis and a Rod of Empower, that's only an 8th level spell.

sofawall
2009-08-13, 12:08 PM
And yet even if you ain'tent dead, having more than half your levels being taken down pretty much destroys any credibility you might have as an actual threat. In comes the wizard's familiar to mop up the encounter. (Hyperbole? Maybe.)

Maybe not, not if you're, say, an Arcane Heirophant. Or you've shared your Hr/level buffs.

Trust me, Enervation hurts.

EDIT:
Frost Worm: That 3d6 dex spell+lesser rod of maximise
Dragon: As above
Giant: Solid Fog
Elemental: Bestow Curse, perhaps?
Devil: High saves hurt me :( Polymorph, maybe?

Anyway, all these battles are won or rendered trivial by 1 spell, maybe two in the case of the elemental.

tyckspoon
2009-08-13, 12:29 PM
(Cold) subtyped creatures are immune to Shivering Touch, as it is (don't ask how this makes sense, it doesn't) cold-typed ability damage. The Storm Giant has perpetual Freedom of Movement, but a low Reflex and standard-issue horrible Touch AC; debuffing Rays would be the way to go there (Ray of Exhaustion + Ray of Enfeeblement cripples its movement and stacks up at least a -12 Strength penalty, might take two shots of Exhaustion if it saves against the first.) Or you can take those Shivering Touches you wanted to use on the dragon and apply them here.

sofawall
2009-08-13, 12:33 PM
(Cold) subtyped creatures are immune to Shivering Touch, as it is (don't ask how this makes sense, it doesn't) cold-typed ability damage. The Storm Giant has perpetual Freedom of Movement, but a low Reflex and standard-issue horrible Touch AC; debuffing Rays would be the way to go there (Ray of Exhaustion + Ray of Enfeeblement cripples its movement and stacks up at least a -12 Strength penalty, might take two shots of Exhaustion if it saves against the first.) Or you can take those Shivering Touches you wanted to use on the dragon and apply them here.

Stupid cold ability damage...

Yeah, switch some stuff around then, I was working from memory. Ray of Clumsiness metamagic to take out the dragon should work, then. Anything there with low Int? Ray of Stupidity. Lesser metamagic rods are pretty cheap.

RTGoodman
2009-08-13, 12:36 PM
For the frost worm, you just need a spell that deals Int damage. (I know there's one... ray of stupidity, maybe?) It's Int is only 2, meaning you can take it out with one shot and a coup de grace from your party.

Storm Giant? Maximized shivering touch. Ice Devil? Banishment (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/banishment.htm), plus a handful of things that it fears/hates/opposes (holy symbol of a good god, a Paladin, etc.).

Xaklin_Magewrit
2009-08-13, 12:42 PM
Multiclass ranger/ranger. Do this.
http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/01/27/episode-1087-exalted-feat/

sofawall
2009-08-13, 12:42 PM
I was trying to avoid using the higher-level spells, as he said. And I did advise Ray of Stupidity against low int folk. I just didn't check which of them are low int.

Tar Palantir
2009-08-13, 12:51 PM
What about the level 9 wizard throwing about Maximized Split Ray Enervations out of his 4th level spell slots? Arcane Thesis (Enervation), Maximize Spell, Split Ray, and Metamagic School Focus. No Incantatrix, no Dragon Magazine. That single tactic doesn't kill everything, of course, but a specialist wizard with 20 Int can do that 3 times a day for 8 negative levels a shot. That's a dead pyrohydra, avoral, night hag, or rakshasha (CR 10), not to mention anything with a template, and humanoids with class levels are annihilated as well. And a sorcerer can do this metamagic crap even better, thanks to Versatile Spellcaster and Practical Metamagic. A sorcerer can throw out Empowered Twinned Split Rayed Enervations with a pair of 5th level spell slots, or one 6th. Empower, Twin, Split Ray, Versatile Spellcaster, Arcane Thesis, MM School Focus, Practical (Twin), Practical (Empower). A human with two flaws can do this at level 12. Average of 15 negative levels a pop, usable 6 times per day by a sorcerer with 20 Cha, or 7 with a 22. A beholder is dead. A death slaad is dead. A nalfeshnee is dead. A twelve headed pyro/cryohydra is dead. A horned devil is dead. A glabrezu is dead. A trumpet archon is dead. A celestial charger unicorn is dead. A planetar is dead. All of those examples were between CR 13-16, and all died to a single spell. Two castings kills almost anything in the Monster Manual without immunity. A Nerveskitter to secure the initiative if necessary, and it's all over. I saw something similar done with Orb of Fire. The only things that lived long enough to require a second shot were those that were immune to fire, and they still took half damage. Bring in Incantatrix and (more) absurdity ensues.

mikej
2009-08-13, 12:59 PM
We'd removed the Thri-Kreen's racial hit dice in our group. We usually play with a laid back attitude nowadays toward level adjustments. They're almost as popular ( especially with the player that book that book ) in our homebrew world as Dwarfs and Humans. My previous experience, they're decent, Thri-Kreen Rangers are pretty effective in battle

Brauron
2009-08-13, 01:07 PM
Anyways, the Thri-Kreen ranger also gives you the unique opportunity to try your hand at multibow combat. A thri-kreen with a pair of composite long bows is most definitely a ranged threat, especially with those Str and Dex bonuses and the movement possibilities with getting out of reach to continue your ranged barage.


Dual-bow was kind of what I was thinking. I really prefer working with the fluff potential of characters more than being "mechanically awesome" -- especially since the people I currently play with feel the same way.

mikej
2009-08-13, 01:10 PM
This thread got me thinking. Thri-Kreen Warblade focused on Tiger Claw...

*opens up notepad*

Kelpstrand
2009-08-13, 01:23 PM
Okay, First of all: "It's easy enough to take down several days' worth of encounters without even using up half of a core-only wizard's higher level spells."

Second of all, as addressed, FoM on the Giant, Yes he has a bad reflex save, but you aren't actually killing him with and Ref or anything spell.

You could Ray of Enfeeble+Ray of Exhaustion, but even Exhausted and enfeebled, he can still beat you up with his 28 str and +14 BAB, and it's not like he doesn't have Chain Lightning and Call lightning just in case.

Bestow Curse does basically nothing to stop two Elder Air Elemntals from rocking your face.

And now you guys are all preparing spells after the present challenges. And there are plenty of other options, like The Formian Mynarch + 2 Taskmasters + 3 Warriors idea that I rejected.

Or advanced Mind flayers.

And that's my point.

As for repeated Arcane Thesis abuse. Yes, As I said, Enervation + Arcane Thesis + a bunch of meta feats is annoying as crap, it also does nothing against undead, or half the outsiders who can Deathward themselves (You know how half those "it's dead"s actually have Cleric casting, and so, "it's dead" actually results in "You wasted all your feats and it's immune to the thing you use half your spells on."), and it's seriously the only way Enervation is at all a combat winner.

I already specified outside metamagic cost reducers that enervation is useful in providing penalties so that other people can kill them or you can cast other spells that can kill them, but does nothing to stop them from killing you by itself. Can we please stop demonstrating anything at all that has to do with Arcane Thesis?

NEO|Phyte
2009-08-13, 02:59 PM
This thread got me thinking. Thri-Kreen Warblade focused on Tiger Claw...

*opens up notepad*

There was one gestalt game I was in where I was a thri-kreen Warblade//LA+HD/pre-PrC filler/Bloodstorm Blade/Bloodclaw Master. Much MWF was had.

Kelpstrand
2009-08-13, 03:10 PM
Dual-bow was kind of what I was thinking. I really prefer working with the fluff potential of characters more than being "mechanically awesome" -- especially since the people I currently play with feel the same way.

Just know that according to the actual rules, you can't fight with two boys any better than one.

You can't offhand a bow for TWFing, and you only get your BAB attacks. So whatever you make is going to a houserule, and don't be surprised if it makes you leagues better than the best archer character that can be made in the actual rules (Not counting Arrow Demon).

Fax Celestis
2009-08-13, 03:11 PM
Just know that according to the actual rules, you can't fight with two boys any better than one.

...according to what? You can TWF two one-handed crossbows.

Susano-wo
2009-08-13, 03:49 PM
I just have to say: the rules don't really say this...but I don't [ed] care how many arms you have, unless you have two torsos...1 bow at a time >.<


I just wanted to play a Thri-Keen ranger...[/SIZE]

Man, that cracked me up :D

Kelpstrand
2009-08-13, 03:54 PM
...according to what? You can TWF two one-handed crossbows.

Yes, one handed Crossobows. You can't TWF an Two handed Bow. Because a Bow cannot be a main hand and an offhand, it requires both. Just like you cannot TWF with Greatswords.

AstralFire
2009-08-13, 04:14 PM
Just know that according to the actual rules, you can't fight with two boys any better than one.

I'll have you know that I am a master of dual wielding male children.

Blackfang108
2009-08-13, 04:40 PM
I'll have you know that I am a master of dual wielding male children.

I WAS going to make that joke, but I couldn't decide which direction to take it in.

Grevious Harm With A Body was winning.

Fax Celestis
2009-08-13, 04:49 PM
Yes, one handed Crossobows. You can't TWF an Two handed Bow. Because a Bow cannot be a main hand and an offhand, it requires both. Just like you cannot TWF with Greatswords.

...according to...?


Two-Handed

Two hands are required to use a two-handed melee weapon effectively. Apply 1Ĺ times the characterís Strength bonus to damage rolls for melee attacks with such a weapon.

Take a look at the sidebar in the XPH too, wherein it discusses thri-kreen dual-wielding double weapons. It looks kinda like this:
http://loc.mornproductions.com/locimgs/Kreen.jpg

Gralamin
2009-08-13, 04:51 PM
Yes, one handed Crossobows. You can't TWF an Two handed Bow. Because a Bow cannot be a main hand and an offhand, it requires both. Just like you cannot TWF with Greatswords.

There is absolutely no RAW supporting this. A Two-handed weapon merely needs 2 hands.

sofawall
2009-08-13, 05:09 PM
I'll have you know that I am a master of dual wielding male children.

Ohmygosh it's AstralFire!

Yeah, I was just gonna leave that one.

Kelpstrand
2009-08-13, 05:37 PM
Once again, you can only TWF as per the TWFing action in the rules: IE:

"If you wield a second weapon in your off hand, you can get one extra attack per round with that weapon. You suffer a -6 penalty with your regular attack or attacks with your primary hand and a -10 penalty to the attack with your off hand when you fight this way. You can reduce these penalties in two ways:

[various clarifications, none of which are about bows]"

If you can wield a weapon in a single hand, you can TWF with it. If you can't, then you cannot. You can have a primary weapon that requires two hands, or use a double weapon, you can even shoot a bow and then use your other two hands as off hand attacks with light weapons like in that picture. You cannot however TWF with a bow and a bow, or a greatsword and a greatsword, or a greatsword and a bow.

Specific non handed weapons have exception clauses stated they can be used as an off hand weapon, such as boot blades, or Armor Spikes "You can also make a regular melee attack (or off-hand attack) with the spikes, and they count as a light weapon in this case. (You canít also make an attack with armor spikes if you have already made an attack with another off-hand weapon, and vice versa.)"

But since bows do not come with a statement that they may be used as off hand attacks, you may only TWF as per the rules of the TWFing feat, IE: "wield a weapon in your off hand"

Fax Celestis
2009-08-13, 05:42 PM
But since bows do not come with a statement that they may be used as off hand attacks, you may only TWF as per the rules of the TWFing feat, IE: "wield a weapon in your off hand"

Daggers do not carry that distinction either, yet you can wield them in an off-hand.

Two handed weapons (including bows) only require two hands to wield.


Longbow

You need at least two hands to use a bow, regardless of its size. A longbow is too unwieldy to use while you are mounted. If you have a penalty for low Strength, apply it to damage rolls when you use a longbow. If you have a bonus for high Strength, you can apply it to damage rolls when you use a composite longbow (see below) but not a regular longbow.

Furthermore:


If you wield a second weapon in your off hand, you can get one extra attack per round with that weapon. When fighting in this way you suffer a -6 penalty with your regular attack or attacks with your primary hand and a -10 penalty to the attack with your off hand. If your off-hand weapon is light the penalties are reduced by 2 each. (An unarmed strike is always considered light.)


Benefit
Penalties for fighting with multiple weapons are reduced by 2 with the primary hand and reduced by 6 with off hands.

Normal
A creature without this feat takes a -6 penalty on attacks made with its primary hand and a -10 penalty on attacks made with its off hands. (It has one primary hand, and all the others are off hands.) See Two-Weapon Fighting.
There is no text that says you cannot wield a weapon in two off-hands.

Cieyrin
2009-08-13, 05:46 PM
Yes, one handed Crossobows. You can't TWF an Two handed Bow. Because a Bow cannot be a main hand and an offhand, it requires both. Just like you cannot TWF with Greatswords.

I don't know what you mean by one-handed crossbows, given you can fire any crossbow with one hand, from a hand crossbow up to a great crossbow. Anyways, nowhere in the rules does it specifically say you couldn't use more than one bow, it's generally not done b/c most creatures only have one pair of arms to use. The only thing in the description of bows is that you need at least 2 hands to use, so using 2 bows would require at least 4 hands. I'd imagine that you would do a side shooter type deal to pull it off.

Also, why couldn't you two-weapon fight with greatswords? Thri-kreen are specicifically described as using two gythkas, their racial double weapons, which are 2 weapons in 4 arms which could be used with only one end for the two-handed strength bonus. Doing the same with any other two-handed weapon is not out of the realm of possibility.

EDIT: Fax beat me to the punch. Ah well, he explains it far better than I did, anyways. And also:

...or wield two greatswords two-handed and take the TWF combat style. It's TWO TWO TWO TUESDAY.

Unfortunately, it's not Tuesday, it's TWO days past TUESDAY.:smallbiggrin:

Draken
2009-08-13, 06:18 PM
Let's also not ignore that the arrow demon sets more than sufficient precedent for two-weapon fighting with Bows.

Kelpstrand
2009-08-13, 06:28 PM
There is no text that says you cannot wield a weapon in two off-hands.

Yes there is. It's the part that describes how you can TWF with a weapon in your off hand (singular). You cannot however TWF with a weapon being wielded in your off hands (plural) because the rules do not state that you can.

Are you seriously claiming that the rules don't state you can't, so you can?


Let's also not ignore that the arrow demon sets more than sufficient precedent for two-weapon fighting with Bows.

Arrow Demons do not TWF with bows. They have an Ex ability called Symmetrical Archery, which allows them to use Two bows at once in a way that no other four armed creature can. It is the only reason they can do so, and if TWFing with two bows were valid, they would not even have that ability.

Fax Celestis
2009-08-13, 06:33 PM
Yes there is. It's the part that describes how you can TWF with a weapon in your off hand (singular). You cannot however TWF with a weapon being wielded in your off hands (plural) because the rules do not state that you can.

Are you seriously claiming that the rules don't state you can't, so you can?
Not at all. I am claiming that the rules support the use of two handed weapons in a two-weapon fighting attack when you possess more than two arms due to the verbage of the Multiweapon Fighting feat, the example made with the thri-kreen and their gythka, and the phrasing on the description of two-handed weapons themselves.

Darrin
2009-08-13, 06:38 PM
If you want a Thri-Kreen without the racial HD, try a Diopsid from the Dragon Compendium. Basically, "what if a thri-kreen was as dumb as a brick", but only +1 LA. Four arms, but the rules for the secondary arms are a little wonky... I imagine that trying to reconcile the modifiers with Multiweapon fighting would give you a nice migraine.

NEO|Phyte
2009-08-13, 06:40 PM
Yes there is. It's the part that describes how you can TWF with a weapon in your off hand (singular). You cannot however TWF with a weapon being wielded in your off hands (plural) because the rules do not state that you can.

Are you seriously claiming that the rules don't state you can't, so you can?
Breaking news! Rules written under the assumption that you only have two hands break down when someone with more than two hands shows up. More at 11.

Pointless statements aside, WotC probably should have included proper rules for MWF, rather than just having the MWF feat refer to the TWF feat, which refers to the TWF combat action.
That said, checking through the SRD, Xills (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/monsters/xill.htm) have 4 arms, and their attack entry includes "2 longbows +4 ranged (1d8/◊3)", so yes, it CAN be done.

Draken
2009-08-13, 07:22 PM
Arrow Demons do not TWF with bows. They have an Ex ability called Symmetrical Archery, which allows them to use Two bows at once in a way that no other four armed creature can. It is the only reason they can do so, and if TWFing with two bows were valid, they would not even have that ability.

Eeerr... You will notice that the arrow demon lacks any of the following feats: Two-Weapon Fighting, Improved Two-weapon Fighting, Greater Two-Weapon Fighting (or the multi-weapon variants).

There is another creature with a similar talent that also lacks these feats. It is called an Ettin.

The ability of the Arrow Demon exists for a very simple reason. Archery is stupidly feat intensive. Two (Multi) weapon fighting is stupidly feat intensive. Giving the Arrow Demons a whole bunch of bonus feats would probably not look that good, so the developer decided to give it an ability that works just the same way, as a much more elegant solution than making it look like the demon had a few fighter levels.

Edit: Plus actually giving it the feats would make the bastards equaly effective in melee and thus not pigeonhole DMs into using the arrow demon as artillery.

olentu
2009-08-13, 07:38 PM
Eeerr... You will notice that the arrow demon lacks any of the following feats: Two-Weapon Fighting, Improved Two-weapon Fighting, Greater Two-Weapon Fighting (or the multi-weapon variants).

There is another creature with a similar talent that also lacks these feats. It is called an Ettin.

The ability of the Arrow Demon exists for a very simple reason. Archery is stupidly feat intensive. Two (Multi) weapon fighting is stupidly feat intensive. Giving the Arrow Demons a whole bunch of bonus feats would probably not look that good, so the developer decided to give it an ability that works just the same way, as a much more elegant solution than making it look like the demon had a few fighter levels.

Edit: Plus actually giving it the feats would make the bastards equaly effective in melee and thus not pigeonhole DMs into using the arrow demon as artillery.

I think that close combat shot makes them effective in melee.

Cieyrin
2009-08-13, 07:59 PM
If you want a Thri-Kreen without the racial HD, try a Diopsid from the Dragon Compendium. Basically, "what if a thri-kreen was as dumb as a brick", but only +1 LA. Four arms, but the rules for the secondary arms are a little wonky... I imagine that trying to reconcile the modifiers with Multiweapon fighting would give you a nice migraine.

Ah right, I was trying to remember Diopsids (don't have my book available right now) to illustrate two-handed two-weapon fighting (though I believe they allowed using larger sized weapons, so maybe not quite the same).

Draken
2009-08-13, 08:36 PM
I think that close combat shot makes them effective in melee.

With bows. It doesn't count.

:smalltongue: