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King of Nowere
2009-10-15, 04:40 PM
Chessplayers can be found almost everywhere, and are seen by many as people with a lot of spare time, maybe nerds, maybe intellectuals.
But playing chess is undeniably a training for the mind. More than one powerful wizard recommends it to his students to improve their concentration capabilities, as well as playing themselves. Those who do may fall a little behind in the study of pure magic, but they surely gain a much better skill in using what they already know.
Most chess players are just people playing a game, but beware the chessplayer spellcaster! He already seen how to obliterate you in five spells against every possible defence!

Becoming a chessplayer
Prerequisites: 8 ranks in concentration, 2 metamagic feats.
Everyone whose mental acuity can be compared favorably to that of a table can become one. Learning to play chess takes little. Applying that to wizardry takes a bit more, on the other hand.
Wizards and sorcerers can benefit best from it, while clerics and druids can find of some use but are probably better off with their base class.

Skills
chessplayers get 2+int modifier skill points per level. The skill list is the same as for wizards.
Special: chessplayers must always max concentration, so they have to spend a skill point on it every level. If it wasn't already maxed out, they have to spend more at the first levels.

Armor and weapon proficiencies
chessplayers gain no additional armor and weapons proficiencies.

hit dice: d4

base attack bonus: low
good save: will

level special
1 concentration
2 handle complexity 1, +1 to spellcaster level
3 calculate beyond, +1 to spellcaster level
4 ______________ +1 to spellcaster level
5 handle complexity 2, +1 to spellcaster level
6 improved conccentration, blitz play 1
7 ______________ +1 to spellcaster level
8 handle complexity 3, +1 to spellcaster level
9 ________________ +1 to spellcaster level
10 blitz play 2, +1 to spellcaster level

Concentration: The chessplayer extraniates himslef from the world, focusing all his attention on a specific mental task (casting a spell, making a will save, making a skill check...). The chessplayer may activate this ability every moment he has to perform a mental task, as a free action, even if not during his turn (for example, to get a bonus to a will save against a specific effect directed to him).
During that time he acts as if he had a +4 on the mental stat necessary for that task. If the task is casting a spell, he gets a +2 to his caster level. The bonus apply only to said task. Given the extreme degree of concentration involved, the chessplayer also takes +4 to all concentration checks while concentrated.
On the other hand, getting so concentrate brings the chessplayer to be oblivious to the world around himself. While in this state the chessplayer cannot cast defensively, is considered flat-footed at all effects (therefore a rogue could sneack attack him easily) and takes -10 to all listen and spot checks (exception: if you concentrate on a listen or spot check, you don't take this penalty to the check in question - but still take it to all other listen or spot checks).
At level 6 the bonuses grow to +3 to caster level and +6 to everything else., while the penalties remains the same.
Using concentration don't provoke an attack of opportunity by itself. Performing the action on which you're concentrated may do.
Concentration automatically ends when the task is performed (or ruined, as it is). Otherwise, the maximum duration of concentration is one minute (if you want, for example, use concentration to better overhear a conversation), at which point it expires.
A chessplayer cannot willingly leave a concentration status until the task is completed or the minute has passed. His teammates may shake him in case of need to get him out of the "trance".
There are no penalties at the end of the concentration period, yet after concentration is ended the chessplayer cannot concentrate again in the next minute.

Handle complexity: the cessplayer is particularly proficient in manipulating complex metamagicked spells.
At level 3, if he applies two or more metamagic feats on a spell, the new spell level is decreased by one, so that an empowered, maximized fireball needs a level 7 slot instead of a level 8. Every metamagic feat increase the spell level by at least one, so an heightened, extended fireball still needs a level 5 slot.
At level 6, for every metamagic feat applied over the first, the spell slot needed decreases by one. You may apply one metamagic feat for free with this ability. For example, an heightened, empowered, maximized, extended, enlarged fireball would be of level 8.
At level 9, the chessplayer chooses a metamagic feat different from quicken spel, and that increases the spell level by at least two. Applying this feat to a spell from now on increase its level by one level less.

Calculate beyond: A chessplayer may try to anticipate the motions of the battle like they were the moves of a chess game, and prepare for them. The chessplayer may guess which spell he shall use in the next rounds. If he effectively cast this spells, the cd of the saving throw and the caster level increases by one for every round of anticipation. If he don't cast the spells he guessed, he takes a -2 penalty to the save's dc and caster level for the rest of the fight.
For example, the chessplayer may take his turn, then calculate that in the next round he will cast spell A and quickened spell B, in the second round he'll cast spell C and spell D in the third round. If he in fact does so, the cd and caster level of spell A and B are increased by one, that of spell C is increased by two, and that of D by three.
If on the second turn the chessplayer cast a spell different from C (or if he cast C and a quickened spell, or if he don't cast a spell at all) he takes the penalty. Even if he cast spell D in the next round, it don't matter. Once he set the list, he needs to follow it precisely to get the bonuses.

Blitz play: by playing chess with a very limited reflection time, the chessplayer learns to think very quickly and very efficiently.
At level 6, quicken a spell requires a slot of three levels higher, instead of 4. So an 8th level chessplayer who took empower spell with handle complexity 3 may cast a heightened, quickened, empowered, maximized fireball with a spell slot of 8th level.
At level 10, once per day, a chessplayer may concentrate to cast a second quickened spell in the same round.




Basically they lost two levels of spell slots and caster levels from their class, but gains a lot of powerful metamagic options. I like the idea, and it has a part in my world. Comments?

Temotei
2009-10-25, 11:52 PM
The formatting is awful, and spelling/grammar mistakes are everywhere. There are also several spots that are in need of capital letters, but are lacking. Edit the post to be in proper format, mostly. Then maybe somebody will read it.

EDIT: Also, don't make people look up skill lists and the like. Don't be lazy. It'll make your class more interesting to read about, as well as more professionally laid out.

Krazddndfreek
2009-10-26, 12:15 AM
Also, there aren't any prereqs for the class. So you could actually take this for your first level.

Haven
2009-10-26, 12:16 AM
No prerequisites? Having a prerequisite is what makes a prestige class a prestige class.

Probably something like Concentration 8 ranks, and must beat a low-ranked member of the class in order to be initiated?

AzazelSephiroth
2009-10-30, 04:14 PM
:smallconfused:Thats a lot of negativity people. While I agree that the formatting and grammar may have suffered, I think the idea was sound and def. has potential. :smallwink:
For starters I would make a prereq. like char lv. 6 or 5. No specifics in order to keep in line with your intended idea of 'anyone can become one.'
Another idea perhaps- the handling complexity seems... a little too complex in my opinion.. and that is just my opinion, I think perhaps saying "when a chessplayer studies a combat or enemy for a period of time (say 1-3 rnds) he then gets a bonus on his DCs equal to the amount of time spent 'planning ahead' this bonus affects either one target creauture or all creatures within a spell area depending upon what type of spell cast and what the Chessplayer was studying... an enemy or combat situation." Trying to plan what spells you will cast more than one or so rounds ahead of time can be problematic sometimes... then again that is just an opinion from my past experience.
I also think that they should get a bonus on tactical planning or perhaps if the Chessplayer knows, for example, that the party will be entering a dragon's lair then he can, using his complex thought, make a plan and give the party and himself a bonus on either skill checks or saves or even potenially AC and Attacks. I believe Mutants and Masterminds had a feat like that... can't remember the details though.
Anyway ignore the negativity and keep going. I like the idea and personally I love playing chess.:smallsmile:

Temotei
2009-10-30, 04:20 PM
http://www.giantitp.com/forums/misc.php?do=bbcode

That should help.

It's an interesting idea, just annoying to read because of all of the errors. Also, handle complexity is awesome. :smallbiggrin: For casters anyways. You should have a prerequisite of concentration (5 - 8 ranks would make sense).

sigurd
2009-10-30, 04:39 PM
I appreciate the effort and energy it takes to write up a new idea. I haven't seen it before. I hate to sound discouraging.

How does playing Chess give you any significant bonus to adventuring? Playing (and maybe benefiting from chess) might be a feat, maybe. If a wizard could simply play chess and avoid his studies (some of which are inherently dangerous) wouldn't they do that?

I think everything in manipulating magic would be more complicated and demanding than playing chess.


Sigurd

Perhaps some sort of magic item, or adventure might teach the benefits of good chess or perhaps chess against a particularly difficult opponent. A prestige class seems over the top.

Temotei
2009-11-03, 02:48 PM
Sigurd makes a good point. A feat would make more sense than a prestige class. Mainly because when you're an adventurer, you don't want to be known as the chess player of the group. You want to be known as the great controller, or the blaster, or the necromancer. Hehe or at least I would be disgruntled if I learned I was being called a chess player over those titles...:smallredface:

Calmar
2009-11-03, 04:47 PM
Sigurd makes a good point. A feat would make more sense than a prestige class. Mainly because when you're an adventurer, you don't want to be known as the chess player of the group. You want to be known as the great controller, or the blaster, or the necromancer. Hehe or at least I would be disgruntled if I learned I was being called a chess player over those titles...:smallredface:

The OP probably likes chess. Just pretend the class was called something like 'Eldritch Strategist', or 'Arcane Tactician', if that sounds better to you... :smallwink:

I agree that the prestige class needs requirements. Ranks in Concentration and a few metamagic feats, perhaps.

King of Nowere
2009-11-03, 05:49 PM
Sorry for the format, but I don't know how to do it, otherwise I'd have done.
For grammar, I'll make a check.
For changes, 8 or 10 ranks in concentration, plus at least 2 metamagic feats seems a good idea. The class don't make much sense if you don't have that already




How does playing Chess give you any significant bonus to adventuring? Playing (and maybe benefiting from chess) might be a feat, maybe. If a wizard could simply play chess and avoid his studies (some of which are inherently dangerous) wouldn't they do that?

The idea is that you still study wizardry, if a bit less (you lose 2 caster levels), and also study chess to improve your mind and apply better to wizardry. It's also a slightly different approach to wizardry, i suppose.


I think everything in manipulating magic would be more complicated and demanding than playing chess.

I suppose it would depend both on the level you manipulate magic and the level you play chess. Anyway, there's plenty of stuff that makes much less sense than this, so it's not a great deal.


As many have guessed, I play chess, and most of my group do. Since I sometimes use for a joke "one day chessplayers will rule the world, and those who are not good at it will be denied human rights", when I started dming I decided that there will be a land where this happened. This land is also supposed be rich in wizards and other magic users, and many have this class.
The pcs still don't know it exist, by the way.
Think waht you want of my sense of humor, the idea of all those slaves with their low ELO rating (a rating given to chessplayer and linked to their skill) tatuated on their forhead still cracks me.

EDIT: didn't find that many grammar mistakes. In a long post some are inevitable.
As far as using proper terms to describe class benefits, I'm not that used to it and I never had to do it in a foreign language, so I can't improve it too much.

UglyPanda
2009-11-03, 06:29 PM
It looks like an condensed Incantatrix (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/ex/20010803)with easier entry requirements. I'm having trouble understanding any of it, but your class looks like it's overpowered.

Calculate beyond is silly, for the simple reason that a lot of players have combat routines that they repeat ad naseum. To say it in chess terms, it's like getting a bonus for predicting that you're going to move a pawn on turn 2 when you use the same opening every game.

The class feature distribution is front-loaded, most people wouldn't take it past level 5.

I don't get how it has anything to do with chess. Fluffwise, you could have called the class quite a few other things, like Calmar mentioned.

Temotei
2009-11-03, 08:46 PM
Yeah...spelling mistakes are in a few places, but that's okay. It happens.


Most chess playersare just people playing a game, but beware the chessplayer spellcaster! He already seen how to obliterate you in five spells against every possible defence!

The class is called "chessplayer," so make chess players one word. "He already" should be "He has already." In fact, consider revising that last sentence. Maybe "He has already seen how to obliterate you with five spells, no matter what defense is used!" Or "He's seen how to obliterate you with five spells, despite your most powerful defenses being active." Also, defence is usually defense. It's very seldom spelled with a "c."

As for formatting, this should work.
Guide to Homebrewing Go down to the 10-level prestige class entry, open the spoiler, open the spoiler in that, then copy and paste the code within.


Everyone whose mental acuity can be compared favorably to that of a table can become one.

That's funny, because I think I remember that joke being in Siege of Darkness, by R.A. Salvatore. I don't think this statement fits anymore, though, because even someone with very smart could be lacking concentration ranks and metamagic feats.


The chessplayer extraniates himslef from the world

Is extraniate even a word? I can't find it in the online dictionary. Himself is spelled wrong.


the cessplayer is particularly proficient

Should be chessplayer.


the cd of the saving throw and the caster level increases by one for every round of anticipation

DC, not cd. Increases should be increase, because you're talking about multiple things that increase, not one thing that increases.



If he don't cast the spells he guessed, he takes a -2 penalty to the save's dc and caster level for the rest of the fight.

Don't should be doesn't. DC is capitalized.


the cd and caster level of spell A and B are increased by one

DC.


If on the second turn the chessplayer cast a spell different from C (or if he cast C and a quickened spell, or if he don't cast a spell at all) he takes the penalty. Even if he cast spell D in the next round, it don't matter. Once he set the list, he needs to follow it precisely to get the bonuses.

Don't should be doesn't in both cases. Also, you should clarify that the quickened spell you're talking about in the parentheses is different from spell D.


At level 6, quicken a spell requires a slot of three levels higher, instead of 4.

Quicken should be quickening. I thought quickening a spell only raised the spell slot level by three anyways. Also, if you're going to say three first, say four after, not 4.

In general, you should capitalize words that come after the colons in an ability description, and after headings.

ForzaFiori
2009-11-03, 10:21 PM
Dude, clearly you understanded it well enough to nit-pick it all apart, so what difference does it make if he has a couple errors? He probably has them because he had to translate from his native language so you could understand. If you don't like it, learn Italian and ask him to send you a copy in his native tongue. I bet when that happens, you'll be the one screwing up.

Haven
2009-11-03, 10:29 PM
Also, defence is usually defense. It's very seldom spelled with a "c."

That's actually just the US spelling; the British spell it defence all the time.

Mewtarthio
2009-11-03, 11:12 PM
Dude, clearly you understanded it well enough to nit-pick it all apart, so what difference does it make if he has a couple errors? He probably has them because he had to translate from his native language so you could understand. If you don't like it, learn Italian and ask him to send you a copy in his native tongue. I bet when that happens, you'll be the one screwing up.

Should be "understood." :smalltongue:

Also, the OP asked for criticism. The guy you quoted very politely pointed out a few easy ways to make his post more professional-looking.

sigurd
2009-11-03, 11:14 PM
Ok, Chess theme it is.

Can we come up with chess moves and famous chess gambits to name levels after?

It seems to me there is a whole lot of D&D in here but not enough chess.


Alekhine's Defense

A Chessmaster has become so adept in the strategy of magic that his spells are more difficult to counteract and understand. At every third level the spellcraft checks against the caster suffer a -1 penalty.

Queen Me
8th level Power. (All the way across the board)
At 8th level a Chessmaster may cast Alter Self once a day as bonus spell.

Strategists Face
Chessmasters study devious methods of divining information. At __X__ level a Chessmaster has learned to hide his divination spells in casual movements without the need for expensive magical components. The caster need not prepare up to a total of 64gp (8x8) in material components. Any combination of components higher than 64gp must be prepared normally.

Knight's Leap (class spell)
This is a class spell that allows the target to make one sudden turn in the middle of a charge. The target may only turn once in either direction and she must plan the turn at the beginning of the charge. The second leg of the charge may be no more than 1/3 the characters total movement.

Rooks Rescue
This spell allows the caster to switch places with a friendly target. The target materializes a 10' step in any direction from the previous location of the chessmaster. The targets is not disoriented but may provoke attacks of opportunity for the square he occupies.




These are not very polished but I think you can have more fun with this class if we cut loose for a while with chess ideas and then rein in to something more balanced.


Please don't take my previous criticism to heart. My first instinct is always to strive for believability. There is lots of room for classes that don't make sense but are just fun.


Sigurd

Temotei
2009-11-04, 12:01 AM
I like those ideas. :smallbiggrin:


That's actually just the US spelling; the British spell it defence all the time.

Ah. My command of other dialects is...lacking. :smallamused:


Dude, clearly you understanded it well enough to nit-pick it all apart, so what difference does it make if he has a couple errors? He probably has them because he had to translate from his native language so you could understand. If you don't like it, learn Italian and ask him to send you a copy in his native tongue. I bet when that happens, you'll be the one screwing up.

Because PEACH means to learn someone's native language, ask for them to send it in that same language, then translate it back to my native language. Also, I noticed there's a lack of critique in your post, constructive or otherwise, other than of my post.

Knight's Leap just seems weird. I don't know of many casters that will be wanting to charge...unless they're polymorphed/using that one spell that makes them into a battle-god or whatever. Interesting concept though.

Rook's Rescue could be worded better. Does the chessplayer provoke attacks of opportunity as well?

As you said, they need to be polished. There are a couple errors, but nothing major.

Milskidasith
2009-11-04, 12:06 AM
None of the abilities Sigurd suggested seem useful (at all), except Strategists Face, which is an improved Eschew Materials (but how many spells have less than 64 GP components?)

A -1 penalty to spellcraft means nothing; mages will autoidentify anyway, and melee won't ever need it.

Taking 8 levels in a class to get alter self 1/day isn't worth it; it takes less time to simply get it by levelling up in a different class.

Knight's Leap is maybe OK if you can cast it on melee, but pathetic if it's personal.

Rook's Rescue is... it's worse than baleful (I think) Transposition, which is like a level 1 spell.

Temotei
2009-11-04, 12:15 AM
I missed the levels. Whoops. Maybe make Queen Me a 3/day ability.

Also missed the "target" part of Knight's Leap...:smallbiggrin:


At every third level the spellcraft checks against the caster suffer a -1 penalty.

I wonder if he meant for this to scale with other classes, too. That might actually make it worthwhile...slightly. Hehe :smallsmile:

sigurd
2009-11-04, 12:21 AM
Those are brainstorms for flavour.

Baleful Transposition is indeed a better spell, its 2nd level. But it doesn't draw its inspiration from Castling on a Chessboard :).

None of these ideas have to be the sole benefit on a level. Getting a free use of Alter self is a nice ability. Its also like reaching the 8th row of a chessboard and changing into another piece.


My point is that we should probably look at this more loosely before we worry too much about balance or appropriateness. We're not making surgery instruments - this is a game.

The original poster joked that "Chess players will rule the world." I'm just thinking about how that might look. Its not all serious.

Debihuman
2009-11-04, 05:28 AM
Heres a table that you can use: Just copy and paste and add the information

Chessplayer Prestige Class
{table=head]Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special|Spells

1st|
+x|
+x|
+x|
+x|Class Ability|+1 level of existing spellcasting class

2nd|
+x|
+x|
+x|
+x|Class Ability|+1 level of existing spellcasting class

3rd|
+x|
+x|
+x|
+x|Class Ability|+1 level of existing spellcasting class

4th|
+x|
+x|
+x|
+x|Class Ability|+1 level of existing spellcasting class

5th|
+x|
+x|
+x|
+x|Class Ability|+1 level of existing spellcasting class

6th|
+x|
+x|
+x|
+x|Class Ability|+1 level of existing spellcasting class

7th|
+x|
+x|
+x|
+x|Class Ability|+1 level of existing spellcasting class

8th|
+x|
+x|
+x|
+x|Class Ability|+1 level of existing spellcasting class

9th|
+x|
+x|
+x|
+x|Class Ability|+1 level of existing spellcasting class

10th|
+x|
+x|
+x|
+x|Class Ability|+1 level of existing spellcasting class [/table]