View Full Version : (3.5) Suggestions for making a horror based mad scientist styled spellcaster

2009-08-15, 11:47 AM
Hey ya'll, so how ya'll doin'. To set the scenario for this thread, my rogue character died in my DM's 13th level game (actually managing to make it to 14th level once XP was calculated) and am now playing a Fighter/Barbarian/Warforged Juggernaut. However, in order to keep the game going if any of my characters die and not bog the game down rolling up another, i like to keep a spare character ready just in case. This time, i'm wanting to try something different in the form of a spellcaster (since i usually play martial classes, and even play my cleric of Pelor in another campaign as more of a fighter-style spellslinger) maybe something along the lines of a wizard, and on topic of flavor, maybe a wizard/cleric character styled after either Doktor from Hellsing, or Desty Nova from Battle Angel Alita, both intelligent and horrifyingly insane with the pursuit of knowledge. I've always been a sucker for scary characters, so what do you ya'll suggest for a good build up, some things to keep in mind.

]While roleplaying him as someone frightening, i don't want him to be evil as in "kill everyone just to learn something new", but more along the lines of "magic and knowledge is not evil, people who use them for evil make them evil." He'd aid the party as needed, but how do i roleplay him as someone thoroughly creepy, but not outwardly evil.

]Thinking about taking levels in Fleshwarper, to fit the mad scientist theme. Also suggestions for skills and feats is very much appreciated as i have no clue on how to make a powerful spellcaster

]Ideas to spend gold on, for items or constructs, or even grafts. And much more. I have little experience in playing spellcasters, so any suggestions from more experienced spellcaster players is appreciated.

Can't wait to hear your suggestions, and thanks again for reading over this. Cheers ya'll.

Deth Muncher
2009-08-15, 11:54 AM
Archivists are fun for crazy people. ^_^ Plus, whatever book it is they're in, there's a PrC for people who research Things Not Meant To Be Known (TM). Book citation plz?

2009-08-15, 12:06 PM
Archivists are fun for crazy people. ^_^ Plus, whatever book it is they're in, there's a PrC for people who research Things Not Meant To Be Known (TM). Book citation plz?Tainted Scholar. :smallamused:

Although you need to be playing with taint to make it useful.

2009-08-15, 12:07 PM
Grafts. Look up the Graft crafting feats. That'll do it quite well. Illithid Flesh (http://realmshelps.dandello.net/cgi-bin/feats.pl?Graft_Illithid_Flesh,all), Yuan-Ti Flesh (http://realmshelps.dandello.net/cgi-bin/feats.pl?Graft_Yuan-ti_Flesh,all), Wyrmgrafter (http://realmshelps.dandello.net/cgi-bin/feats.pl?Wyrmgrafter,all), and so on.

Keld Denar
2009-08-15, 12:12 PM
Archivist is in Heroes of Horror, along with the Dread Necromancer, both really freakin cool spellcasting classes.

And yea...Archivist is both STRONG, and matching the flavor you want. Actually manifesting the madness is more of an RP aspect than a mechanical aspect though, and you could just as easily pull off the concept as a vanilia wizard 20 as you could with a Wizard3/PrCA4/PrCB5/PrCC2/PrCD3 or whatever...

Voice of Reason
2009-08-15, 12:16 PM
My first suggestion would be grafts, which fit the mad scientist role to a tee. There are lots of grafts to choose from:

Draconic Grafts (Races of the Dragon)
Deathless Grafts (Magic of Eberron)
Elemental Grafts (Magic of Eberron)
Plant Grafts (Magic of Eberron)
Undead Grafts (Libris Mortis)

and probably a few more that I can't remember. They don't even have to be necessarily obvious. For example:


Fighter: Hey, [charecter name], weren't you scared back there?

Mad Scientist: Some time ago I replaced my heart with that of an evil black dragon I was forced to kill; now I hardly remember what it is to fear.

Fighter: *surprised and nervous look*

Mad Scientist: *misconstruing fighter's reaction* Oh don't worry, it didn't turn me evil or anything. That old "heart of stone" saying has no basis in fact; any evil a person has is found in the brain. I used his brains while trying to brew memory potion which didn't quite pan out.

Fighter: Oh, um, I see...

Mad Scientist: Not nearly as well as I do! Ever wondered why my eyes look so strange...?


Deth Muncher: What you're talking about is, I believe, an Alienist. I believe they're found in the Complete Arcane sourcebook. They study things which aren't meant to be studied, and become more "mad" (read: insane) as their studies progress. It's not the most optimal prestige class as far as power goes, but if you're looking for mad scientist...I'm pretty sure this hits the definition right on the nose. They deal with creatures that dwell "nestled in the far realms of insanity:"

Psuedonatural Creatures (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/epic/monsters/pseudonaturalCreature.htm)

2009-08-15, 12:41 PM
If you go with the graft suggestion, I believe it specified that you can't have more than one type of graft.

The alienist was suggested and while thematiquely it fit your character mechaniquely it's a focused on summoning.

2009-08-16, 11:43 AM
Wow, all of these sound like good ideas, i'll have to do a bit more reading on all of these classes. Flavor wise, i'm thinking of going the mad scientist that desires to unlock the secrets of the flesh, altering the body to create what he envisions as something more powerful, eventually heading into levels of Fleshwarper to fit the body alteration theme. What would be the better style of casting for a character like this be: arcane or divine?

Voice of Reason
2009-08-16, 09:19 PM
Frankly speaking, you can make it whatever you really want it to be, but it is my personal opinion that an arcane caster would be best; they usually fit the role of "mad scientist" better than divine casters, who typically steal the role of "religious zealot."

Perhaps a sorcerer/wizard/archivist with access to several enchantment and transmutation spells (to bring out the body's fullest potential, and to make the body better to begin with). Just be careful with polymorph spells and it's ilk if you're going with grafts, as you will lose their benefit (and creepyness factor) while in an assumed shape.