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Soranar
2010-01-12, 10:22 PM
trying to make a list of tiers for prestige classes

I rarely play arcane spellcasters so don't worry if I misjudge them, just point it out

I assume the prestige class uses a base that benefits from using it (pointing out bad combos is irrelevant) and that primarely spellcasting classes use spellcasting PrC

PrC dips are also not considered but could be a different Tier, say Tier X (good for 1 or 2 levels, maybe 3)

my thoughts so far

Tier 1 Incantatrix, archmage, eldritch knight,loremaster, thaumaturgist , apostle of peace

Tier 2 Folchuran lyrist, Sublime chord, arcane trickster,hierophant, , blackflame zealot, bladesinger, master of many forms, chameleon,

Tier 3 Dragon Disciple, assassin, horizon walker, anointed knight, battlesmith,bear warrior, beastmaster, cavalier, tattooed monk,mystic theurge (seen as trap, bumped to 3rd Tier, edit)

Tier 4 Arcane Archer, blackguard,duelist, dwarven defender, shadowdancer

Tier 5 ???

Tier 6 ???

Tier X shadowdancer, blackguard, deepwarden, stoneblessed

herrhauptmann
2010-01-12, 10:29 PM
How are you judging the PrC's? By what it grants? Or also by the entry requirements?
If 2 PrC's are about equal in power, but one has easier entry requirements, I'd say the one with easier entry deserves to be a higher tier than the other.

I believe Deeprift defender should be a tier 5-6. Entry requirements are about equal to Dwarven Defender. It's abilities are maybe equal to the DD, but they usually require you to be in a space normally too small for your character.

General assumption is that Mystic theurge is a trap, so people're gonna say it's not a T2.
What's 'tier x'? Ones that you haven't categorized yet? Or ones that are so bad they belong below tier 6?

edit: Swiftblade. Since 9th level spells are godly, I'd say it's a high tier 2. The capstone ability does let you burn a 6-8th level slot to duplicate a 9th level spell.

Crow
2010-01-12, 10:33 PM
My tier system would be separated thus;

Tier 1 : The is no reason not to take this PrC. No significant lost features and boosts a number of specialty roles.

Tier 2: No significant lost features and boost a specific specialty role.

Tier 3: Gives a decent trade-off between lost features and specialization in a specific role.

Tier 4: Loses good class features for a limited increase in a specific role.

Tier 5: Loses good class features in exchange for features which are actually worse than what you would have gotten by staying in your class.

For purposes of discussion, I consider prerequisite feats and skills as lost class features, since you could have spent them somewhere else.

Soranar
2010-01-12, 10:34 PM
tier X are very good or good in dips, but not so much in full progression

for example : shadowdancer gets hide in plain sight at level 1, but everything afterwards is subpar or completely useless

I think spellcasting Prestige classes should probably have a thread of their own:as they're the ones most likely to give up something important (progression, spells or something else)

Zaq
2010-01-12, 10:38 PM
Obligatory. (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=107618)

The Deej
2010-01-12, 10:44 PM
i can't remember where I saw it, but I saw a different way that PRC's were tiered. It was basically a sort of +2, +1, +0, -1, -2, etc. sort of classification. Basically does the PRC add a lot of power, a little, do something different but on the same scale as the typical base class entry, or does it detract from the build required to enter it?

huh, waddya know-it was this forum. here it is:
http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=107618


edit:

Obligatory. (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=107618)


Ninja'd.

Soranar
2010-01-12, 10:50 PM
I guess this thread has already been done to death then , thanks for the link

PlzBreakMyCmpAn
2010-01-13, 05:35 AM
Welcome to the forums. Google search is your friend. (it picks of BG also)

Tyndmyr
2010-01-13, 10:39 AM
Tier 1 Incantatrix, archmage, eldritch knight,loremaster, thaumaturgist , apostle of peace

While incantatrix is awesome, Planar shepard should accompany it on whatever tier it is. Probably also Initiate of Mystria.

Things like eldritch knight, which are mainly useful for making gishes? No. Definitely much weaker.

I agree that wee need better definitions of what qualifies for each tier, though.

Eloel
2010-01-13, 10:51 AM
I'm surprised at how Incantatrix is 'up 2 or more tiers' in that link. You're already Tier1, what are you trying to get to, Tier -1 ?

Sinfire Titan
2010-01-13, 12:40 PM
I'm surprised at how Incantatrix is 'up 2 or more tiers' in that link. You're already Tier1, what are you trying to get to, Tier -1 ?

It means if a Tier 3 Caster enters, they have the potential power at their fingertips to shoot to Tier 1. Tier 1 is the highest it gets in Jaron's list, thus applying a +2 PrC to a Tier 1 results in an even more powerful Tier 1 (the Apex of the Big 6). Remember that Jaron's list doesn't take optimization skill or build variations into account, hence why there's no Tier 0.

However, an old CO thread once posted Tiers for Builds, using Pun-Pun as the base line. Here's a breakdown:

Level 0: Pun-Pun, Planar Shepherds, Shadowcraft Mages (with or without Echo Spell), Spell-to-Power Erudite with proper abuse. Things no DM is their right mind will allow.

Level 1: GOD Wizard, Hulking Hurler, Chuck, Jumplomancer, etc. Things that are too powerful to play in an Arena, but something some DMs may allow for the hell of it.

Level 2: Batman Wizard, DMM Cleric (who doesn't abuse Divine Power/Righteous Might), Chain Tripper Fighters, the Horizon Tripper, etc. Things that try to help out other party members without making them cringe in fear, but can do some serious damage if needed.

Level 3: Generic Warblades, Swordsages, Crusaders, PsiWars, Beguilers, who don't focus on pumping their Save DCs into "Just Lose" territory, etc. Things generally regarded as balanced, even if played sub-optimally (such as a Warblade with the Weapon Focus line).

Level 4: Rogues who don't specialize in UMD, TWFing, or take Penetrating Strike, etc. Generic newbies who didn't ask CO for help.

Level 5: Anyone who takes Toughness for a reason other than requirements, the WotC PH1 Playtesters, etc. This is the bottom of the barrel.

BishFish
2010-01-13, 03:16 PM
also consider problems with classes like mystic theurge; it is good once you get it, but you have to go out of your way to get there.

sonofzeal
2010-01-13, 03:20 PM
I'm surprised at how Incantatrix is 'up 2 or more tiers' in that link. You're already Tier1, what are you trying to get to, Tier -1 ?
Please read all that boring text that comes before the actual ratings. You'd think people would notice the bolded sections at least...

Eldariel
2010-01-14, 01:34 AM
While incantatrix is awesome, Planar shepard should accompany it on whatever tier it is. Probably also Initiate of Mystria.

Initiate of Mystra is a feat, not a PrC (in PGtF, and yes, it's as good as advertised). Now, Dweomerkeeper on the other hand... Yeah, I know, it's funny how they printed one completely and utterly broken PrC per broken core class. Like they planned it all out from the start.

Sstoopidtallkid
2010-01-14, 01:54 AM
Initiate of Mystra is a feat, not a PrC (in PGtF, and yes, it's as good as advertised). Now, Dweomerkeeper on the other hand... Yeah, I know, it's funny how they printed one completely and utterly broken PrC per broken core class. Like they planned it all out from the start.Then they printed 3 worse PrCs, the unmentionables. Beholder Mage, Illithid Savant, and I do not recall #3

Eldariel
2010-01-14, 02:39 AM
Then they printed 3 worse PrCs, the unmentionables. Beholder Mage, Illithid Savant, and I do not recall #3

Uh, Tainted Scholar? I mean just...yeah. But at least two of those were intended for DM use mostly... And aren't really extensions of any class but just broken in and of themselves. And even Tainted Scholar is mostly broken 'cause it's Tainted scholar.

Really, it's funny how they don't bother to test what happens if DM actually uses the options made for him. I could totally see some poor DM thinking Beholder Mage-levels count as Unassociated since it loses all its normal abilities and starts a new progression...then you have a CR 18 Beholder Mage 10 Beholder. Which...casts as an At Will Wizard 20 with 9 spells per turn (plus one Quickened, of course) while moving. And has Epic Spellcasting of course, since it just took 21st level. And that's apparently the intended use of the class. Let alone Polymorph Any Object *shiver*


Of course, we missed the Cancer Mage and the Ur-Priest (while not in the same ballpark as the rest of the stuff here, it's still a fast progression casting class with no prerequisites getting you 9th level spells in the early teens) and...yeah. And we should give a big hand to Hulking Hurler for being totally busted without being a caster.

taltamir
2010-01-14, 02:53 AM
why is archmage equal to incantantrix?
where is initiate of the seven fold veil?
why is hierophant not a lower tier? (as a 0/5 caster progression class it is only valid for a 1 level dip in order to chain buffs)

Maybe seperate tiers for "dips" and "progress to the end"?

Sstoopidtallkid
2010-01-14, 09:58 AM
Dang it Eldariel, I was trying to block that out of my head! Why'd you have to bring the taint rules back up?

Tyndmyr
2010-01-14, 10:14 AM
Initiate of Mystra is a feat, not a PrC (in PGtF, and yes, it's as good as advertised). Now, Dweomerkeeper on the other hand... Yeah, I know, it's funny how they printed one completely and utterly broken PrC per broken core class. Like they planned it all out from the start.

Yknow, I always assumed that it would take more than a feat to gain that much power.

*looks at leadership*

Yeah, that was foolish of me.

Edit: Naturally, yes, Dweomerkeeper should qualify on the same level as incantatrix and planar shepherd.

Edit #2: It's a damn shame that Initiate of Mystra looks so incompatible with Ur-Priest. If only there was some way to combo them, then you could truly make the Mystic Theurge from hell.

Optimystik
2010-01-14, 11:35 AM
Edit #2: It's a damn shame that Initiate of Mystra looks so incompatible with Ur-Priest. If only there was some way to combo them, then you could truly make the Mystic Theurge from hell.

Why can't you? Ur-Priests can worship dead deities, and Mystra definitely qualifies.


Of course, we missed the Cancer Mage and the Ur-Priest (while not in the same ballpark as the rest of the stuff here, it's still a fast progression casting class with no prerequisites getting you 9th level spells in the early teens) and...yeah. And we should give a big hand to Hulking Hurler for being totally busted without being a caster.

Technically, Cancer Mage isn't a caster either - it requires no casting to enter, and doesn't advance it.

Zeta Kai
2010-01-14, 12:55 PM
also consider problems with classes like mystic theurge; it is good once you get it, but you have to go out of your way to get there.

Ding! Wrong.

MT isn't bad because of it's entry requirements. It's bad because you can't get 9th-level spells with it pre-epic, & you're always 2 spell levels behind a straight full caster. You can't enter any PrC (without cheese) before 5th level, & you can enter MT right out of 6th. That's not really that late, & that's not why MT is sub-optimal.

Go read a "Why does MT suck" thread (there's always one one the first few pages), & you'll understand the reason why it's a "trap" class.

Tyndmyr
2010-01-14, 01:00 PM
Why can't you? Ur-Priests can worship dead deities, and Mystra definitely qualifies.

Does it fulfill the cleric level requirement for initiate of Mystra?

Also, I don't know what alignment she is, but if it's good, that doesn't mesh with Ur-Priest well.

Tyndmyr
2010-01-14, 01:01 PM
Ding! Wrong.

MT isn't bad because of it's entry requirements. It's bad because you can't get 9th-level spells with it pre-epic, & you're always 2 spell levels behind a straight full caster. You can't enter any PrC (without cheese) before 5th level, & you can enter MT right out of 6th. That's not really that late, & that's not why MT is sub-optimal.

Go read a "Why does MT suck" thread (there's always one one the first few pages), & you'll understand the reason why it's a "trap" class.

Well, early entry is one means of solving the problem. Two levels of Ur-priest is another.

Either way, get 9th level spells pre-epic.

Hell, even going wiz/cleric w/o early entry, you'd technically get 9th level spells at level 20, no?

Edit: I should say that without early entry or Ur priest, it's still bad, but that's solely due to being behind on spell level, not the lack of 9th level spells pre-epic.

Flickerdart
2010-01-14, 01:05 PM
Hell, even going wiz/cleric w/o early entry, you'd technically get 9th level spells at level 20, no?

No, because it's only 10 levels. A Wizard 3/Cleric 3/Mystic Theurge 10 has run out of Mystic Theurge levels to take, but has 9th level spells in neither class. He can only get 9th level casting in one of his classes that way by adding 4 more Wizard or Cleric levels.

Tyndmyr
2010-01-14, 01:07 PM
No, because it's only 10 levels. A Wizard 3/Cleric 3/Mystic Theurge 10 has run out of Mystic Theurge levels to take, but has 9th level spells in neither class. He can only get 9th level casting in one of his classes that way by adding 4 more Wizard or Cleric levels.

This is entirely different from "you can't get 9th level spells with it pre-epic".

Also, it's hardly the only arcane/divine class. Typically, you'd follow up MT with another such class.

Optimystik
2010-01-14, 01:12 PM
Ding! Wrong.

MT isn't bad because of it's entry requirements. It's bad because you can't get 9th-level spells with it pre-epic, & you're always 2 spell levels behind a straight full caster. You can't enter any PrC (without cheese) before 5th level, & you can enter MT right out of 6th. That's not really that late, & that's not why MT is sub-optimal.

Go read a "Why does MT suck" thread (there's always one one the first few pages), & you'll understand the reason why it's a "trap" class.

I respectfully disagree - the ease of entry is the second-most important attribute of a theurge class. (The first, of course, is full casting progression.) If early entry methods like Illumian and Precocious Apprentice are allowed, MT becomes much more viable, because its skill requirements are so low. So rather than waste levels on Wiz 3/Cleric 3/MT 4 for example (giving you 4th-level spells on both sides at ECL 10), you can go with Wiz 1/Cleric 3/Mt 6 instead, giving you 5th-level cleric spells and 4th level wizard spells at ECL 10.

A Cleric 10 casts 5th-level cleric spells at caster level 10.
A Wiz1/Cl 3/MT 4 casts 5th level cleric spells at caster level 9, and 4th-level wizard spells at caster level 7. Gaining 7 whole levels of an arcane class are worth losing 1 level of a divine class, I think.

EDIT: Ninja'd several times over. Blast posting at work.

Mongoose87
2010-01-14, 01:13 PM
This is entirely different from "you can't get 9th level spells with it pre-epic".

Also, it's hardly the only arcane/divine class. Typically, you'd follow up MT with another such class.

Typically, don't you try to make MT the one you're following with?

Tyndmyr
2010-01-14, 01:13 PM
Iot7V should be on the same power level as archmage and loremaster.

They are all good for different reasons, mind you, but all of them are extremely useful for specific builds, and tend to be a solid addition to a wild variety of builds.

Master Specialist, probably tier 2. It's not the most badass PrC out there, but it can be entered quickly, making it a great dip, and it can be used to fulfill the entry requirements of other, more awesome PrCs.

What's tier 6 stuff...Dragon Disciple and GSA territory? PrCs that suck worse than the parent class?

Tyndmyr
2010-01-14, 01:15 PM
Typically, don't you try to make MT the one you're following with?

Probably easier for a number of entry routes, come to think of it. Still, either way, you can definitely get 9s on both sides.

It's not as horrible as some make it out to be, but yeah...tier 3 is about right where I'd park it. Can be used well, certainly not broken.

Ur-priest should also be Tier 1.

Optimystik
2010-01-14, 01:18 PM
Ur-priest should also be Tier 1.

By far. It gives 9th level divine casting (from the entire cleric list), rebuke undead (powering NI divine feats) and the ability to steal supernatural abilities from creatures (explicitly including Wish)... all to a non-divine caster, and in just 10 levels. Forget +2, that's +5.

I don't see why they need to be evil though. What if I turned to the Ur-priesthood out of disillusionment with Talos or Bane? What if I'm stealing energy from Mask to prove my devotion to thievery? The alignment requirements are so bloody arbitrary.

Sinfire Titan
2010-01-14, 01:43 PM
why is archmage equal to incantantrix?
where is initiate of the seven fold veil?
why is hierophant not a lower tier? (as a 0/5 caster progression class it is only valid for a 1 level dip in order to chain buffs)

Maybe seperate tiers for "dips" and "progress to the end"?

1: Because 2 SLAs of any spell you can cast at the cost of a 5th level spell slot is worth it (Time Stop, Celerity, etc), Mastery of Shaping is really useful for Battlefield Control, and you can get the SLA multiple times. It isn't on par with the Incanatrix, but the boosts it provides a caster with are strong enough that the PrC sees use in many different builds.

2: CArc.

3: Dunno.



By far. It gives 9th level divine casting (from the entire cleric list), rebuke undead (powering NI divine feats) and the ability to steal supernatural abilities from creatures (explicitly including Wish)... all to a non-divine caster, and in just 10 levels. Forget +2, that's +5.

I don't see why they need to be evil though. What if I turned to the Ur-priesthood out of disillusionment with Talos or Bane? What if I'm stealing energy from Mask to prove my devotion to thievery? The alignment requirements are so bloody arbitrary.

It's +2 because that's all the Tier System allows. If you'd like, you can make a Tier System to sort through each individual tier and rank each PrC by it's sheer power, or you can read through BG's Min-Max forums for the work someone else all ready did on the idea (Why each class is in each tier).

sonofzeal
2010-01-14, 02:00 PM
Iot7V should be on the same power level as archmage and loremaster.

They are all good for different reasons, mind you, but all of them are extremely useful for specific builds, and tend to be a solid addition to a wild variety of builds.
I highly disagree.

Archmage is a controversial class, many don't think it's worth what you lose. It's valuable in Core because, hey, there's not a whole lot of options, and there's some cool stuff you can do with it if you choose your masteries wisely.

Loremaster is nice. It covers the cost of entry, and gives a little bit more, but nothing individually is all that stunning. It's mostly just a nice basic full-casting PrC, beside Red Wizard (which gives more but costs more) and Archmage.

IotSV, on the other hand, is massive. Loads of impressive class features, full casting... and because it's based on Prismatic Wall, it lets you block AMFs. That's huge. IotSV is a significant power boost to almost any Wizard that can access it, and is probably one of the best PrCs in Core+Completes (not counting Hulking Hurler abuse or Rainbow Warmages).

Tyndmyr
2010-01-14, 02:03 PM
Or we could make our own for the hell of it. Perhaps with different criteria.

Tyndmyr
2010-01-14, 02:08 PM
I highly disagree.

Archmage is a controversial class, many don't think it's worth what you lose. It's valuable in Core because, hey, there's not a whole lot of options, and there's some cool stuff you can do with it if you choose your masteries wisely.

It shows up with quite a lot of regularity in optimized builds. Sure, you could screw it up, I guess, but it's not hard to use it for a hefty power boost, and you don't really lose anything with it unless you swap it for one of those power boosts.


Loremaster is nice. It covers the cost of entry, and gives a little bit more, but nothing individually is all that stunning. It's mostly just a nice basic full-casting PrC, beside Red Wizard (which gives more but costs more) and Archmage.

Makes a great dip. Combos well with pretty much anything. If you stick with it, it's a quite solid PrC that hands you nice bennies regularly without taking anything at all away.


IotSV, on the other hand, is massive. Loads of impressive class features, full casting... and because it's based on Prismatic Wall, it lets you block AMFs. That's huge. IotSV is a significant power boost to almost any Wizard that can access it, and is probably one of the best PrCs in Core+Completes (not counting Hulking Hurler abuse or Rainbow Warmages).

It can be used for greater power, true, but it's a minor pain to get into, given that SF/GSF abjuration are a giant waste. It's also a seven level PrC, which means it can't be continued in epic...a minor point against it. It's also rather defensive focused, which some may consider less desirable.

It's a great, high powered casting class, but the others are right with it, for other reasons.

sonofzeal
2010-01-14, 02:38 PM
It shows up with quite a lot of regularity in optimized builds. Sure, you could screw it up, I guess, but it's not hard to use it for a hefty power boost, and you don't really lose anything with it unless you swap it for one of those power boosts.



Makes a great dip. Combos well with pretty much anything. If you stick with it, it's a quite solid PrC that hands you nice bennies regularly without taking anything at all away.



It can be used for greater power, true, but it's a minor pain to get into, given that SF/GSF abjuration are a giant waste. It's also a seven level PrC, which means it can't be continued in epic...a minor point against it. It's also rather defensive focused, which some may consider less desirable.

It's a great, high powered casting class, but the others are right with it, for other reasons.
I find it odd that you're complaining about IotSV requiring "Spell Focus" (a mediocre feat), when both Archmage and Loremaster require "Skill Focus" (a worthless one), and Archmage also requires "Spell Focus". Two of them, for different schools of magic. And is also not continuable into Epic.


That's the thing - for most builds, the benefits of Archmage are countered by the sheer awkwardness of getting in. It's really useful for TO work and some higher-end CO because many of the abilities it offers aren't available anywhere else. Even then though, it's generally seen as a dip class, as the large majority of "High Arcana"s aren't worth what they cost, even ignoring the cost for entry to the PrC. The few exceptions are pretty good, and pretty unusual, but I've always seen it as a class to dip if I need one specific High Arcana for some otherwise-awkward trick, and otherwise ignore.


Loremaster, again, takes some effort to recover the cost of entry (four feats, at least one of which is horrible), so I doubt it makes a worthwhile dip class. Applicable Knowledge is the only one worth writing home about, but if you can only choose it once then all you've done is offset the cost of Skill Focus to get in, and you're still potentially in the hole by a few feats depending on your build. There seems to be debate whether you can choose the same secret more than once though, and this may swing the balance if you take it farther. I'd never call it a dip class though.

Kantolin
2010-01-14, 03:11 PM
Loremaster, again, takes some effort to recover the cost of entry (four feats, at least one of which is horrible), so I doubt it makes a worthwhile dip class.

Three metamagic or item creation feats. If you remain a wizard until level 5, which means 'did almost anything other than be a master specialist', you have 2 by default - scribe scroll and your wizard 5 bonus feat. Most wizards then have at least one metamagic feat - if you really didn't care, you could wait until level 10 and just get it, but quicken spell is not a cost for a wizard.

So... skill focus, which is a pretty lame feat, is the only real cost. It is then countered by giving you a free feat not terribly long after you enter, so... meh? Spend a feat, get class features and a feat?

It's not that it's exciting, it's that you don't really lose much as a wizard, and you get things that are useful enough. Not in the same class as an incantrix, but certainly a 'something for nothing'

Tyndmyr
2010-01-14, 03:24 PM
I find it odd that you're complaining about IotSV requiring "Spell Focus" (a mediocre feat), when both Archmage and Loremaster require "Skill Focus" (a worthless one), and Archmage also requires "Spell Focus". Two of them, for different schools of magic. And is also not continuable into Epic.

Not all Spell Focus' are equal. It boosts saving throw DCs. Thus, it's an acceptable choice in schools that provide lots of spells with saving throws. Not a great choice, but acceptable. Abjuration, though, makes very little use of this, making it a wasted feat.

Loremaster immediately replaces the wasted skill focus.

Archmage allows you to pick which Spell Focus you select, which is preferable. For archmage, being 5 level class isn't so important. It meshes well with a wild variety of other PrCs. The same is true of loremaster.


That's the thing - for most builds, the benefits of Archmage are countered by the sheer awkwardness of getting in. It's really useful for TO work and some higher-end CO because many of the abilities it offers aren't available anywhere else. Even then though, it's generally seen as a dip class, as the large majority of "High Arcana"s aren't worth what they cost, even ignoring the cost for entry to the PrC. The few exceptions are pretty good, and pretty unusual, but I've always seen it as a class to dip if I need one specific High Arcana for some otherwise-awkward trick, and otherwise ignore.

And a good dip class is still heavily useful. Neither class is bad if taken all the way, though.

The stuff Archmage provides are at least equal to very solid feats. At every level. SLA is abusable...master of shaping is awesome, Spell Power is great...you can never get your CL too high. Master of Elements is the equivalent of five seperate metamagics. Arcane Reach is awesome.

Counterspelling is build specific, I'll grant you, and arcane fire is weak, but that's really it.


Loremaster, again, takes some effort to recover the cost of entry (four feats, at least one of which is horrible), so I doubt it makes a worthwhile dip class. Applicable Knowledge is the only one worth writing home about, but if you can only choose it once then all you've done is offset the cost of Skill Focus to get in, and you're still potentially in the hole by a few feats depending on your build. There seems to be debate whether you can choose the same secret more than once though, and this may swing the balance if you take it farther. I'd never call it a dip class though.

Seriously? Three of those are "any metamagic or item crafting". You will have two of these, by virtue of being a wizard. It's a rare wizard that doesn't pick up another of one of those. Hell, many strong PrCs grant those as free feats too. Incantatrix does.

The free feat immediately replaces the skill focus loss....so, no cost, and you now have a higher knowledge check. Everything else you gain is a bonus. Every two levels, you get another feat-equivalent ability of your choice(mediocre feats, but still), and you gain other stuff as well.

You can take it briefly, or for quite a while...doesn't really matter, it's fine either way.

mcl01
2010-01-14, 03:31 PM
Question - why is Void disciple ranked so highly? It loses a fair number of casting levels, and I haven't heard anyone mention it at all online before until this topic. Sure, there are quite a few nice abilities, but -5 CL loses you both 9th level spells.

Sinfire Titan
2010-01-14, 03:35 PM
Question - why is Void disciple ranked so highly? It loses a fair number of casting levels, and I haven't heard anyone mention it at all online before until this topic. Sure, there are quite a few nice abilities, but -5 CL loses you both 9th level spells.


3) Void Suppression. No-save-just-lose for 95% of the monsters out there. Requires a melee touch attack. Spectral Hand is (arguably, depending on your reading) your friend.

2) Moment of Clarity. Grant an ally any feat for a few rounds. Worth noting is that you specifically can't grant Ancestor feats, but Epic feats are, apparently, good to go.

1) Sense Void. Okay, so you can sense stuff anywhere except across planar boundaries, at the cost of a piddly Spellcraft check. This raises a whole series of questions: can others sense you when you're like that? Since you're leaving your body, can you use purely mental actions in that state? Can you move around? How long does it last? Does it count as a divination effect? What can block it? RAW's lack of statement implies very dire answers...

- There's no listed method of detecting if someone else is using this.
- There's nothing preventing the use of mental actions in this state, and there's not even a mention of it requiring concentration.
- There's no method of moving (but see the previous)
- There's no limit on duration given.
- It's never referred to as a divination, nor as scrying, despite the obvious similarities.
- Given that, there's no RAW method I've heard of to block it, short of planar boundaries. Illusions work, though.

In other words, it's potentially "Scry and Die" on steroids.


Conclusion: Void Disciple loses enough spell levels that it could be underpowered, depending on how Sense Void is ruled to work. RAW is vague enough that most of the overpowered potential is based purely on the lack of defined limits. I've personally seen this thing break campaigns though, and I wouldn't recommend it for general PC use. Game-breaking Up Two to a barely passable Down One, depending on how Sense Void is used.

That should explain it.

HCL
2010-01-14, 04:33 PM
trying to make a list of tiers for prestige classes

I rarely play arcane spellcasters so don't worry if I misjudge them, just point it out

I assume the prestige class uses a base that benefits from using it (pointing out bad combos is irrelevant) and that primarely spellcasting classes use spellcasting PrC

PrC dips are also not considered but could be a different Tier, say Tier X (good for 1 or 2 levels, maybe 3)

my thoughts so far

Tier 1 Incantatrix, archmage, eldritch knight,loremaster, thaumaturgist , apostle of peace

Tier 2 Folchuran lyrist, Sublime chord, arcane trickster,hierophant, , blackflame zealot, bladesinger, master of many forms, chameleon,

Tier 3 Dragon Disciple, assassin, horizon walker, anointed knight, battlesmith,bear warrior, beastmaster, cavalier, tattooed monk,mystic theurge (seen as trap, bumped to 3rd Tier, edit)

Tier 4 Arcane Archer, blackguard,duelist, dwarven defender, shadowdancer

Tier 5 ???

Tier 6 ???

Tier X shadowdancer, blackguard, deepwarden, stoneblessed

Eldritch Knight does not have class features, all it gets is full bab. Check abjurant champion.

Loremaster is good, but its not incantrix good

Thaumaturgist is so so, its for summoning clerics, and there are better ways to build a summoner (skypledged, malconvoker, erudite)

Apostle of peace would be good if it did not require vow of poverty which kills it.

Check here http://brilliantgameologists.com/boards/index.php?topic=5198.0

taltamir
2010-01-14, 04:44 PM
1: Because 2 SLAs of any spell you can cast at the cost of a 5th level spell slot is worth it (Time Stop, Celerity, etc), Mastery of Shaping is really useful for Battlefield Control, and you can get the SLA multiple times. It isn't on par with the Incanatrix, but the boosts it provides a caster with are strong enough that the PrC sees use in many different builds.

2: CArc.

3: Dunno.

1: I forgot the SLA thing, still it explicitly requires XP costs for those SLAs, and it is a 5th level slot AND a slot of the level of the spell you want for 2x a day.
So celerity (a 4th level spell) means using a 4th level slot and a 5th level slot to get two 4th level slots back, bad choice.
Time stop however (one 9th level slot and one 5th level slot) is an excellent choice.

2: I know that, I meant where is it in the list, why is it not up there in tier 1


By far. It gives 9th level divine casting (from the entire cleric list), rebuke undead (powering NI divine feats) and the ability to steal supernatural abilities from creatures (explicitly including Wish)... all to a non-divine caster, and in just 10 levels. Forget +2, that's +5.

I don't see why they need to be evil though. What if I turned to the Ur-priesthood out of disillusionment with Talos or Bane? What if I'm stealing energy from Mask to prove my devotion to thievery? The alignment requirements are so bloody arbitrary.

its even better than that, it gives 9th level casting by 9th level. It goes up to 10th level, with 10th level increasing your 9th level casting slots.
At 9th level you get 0 slots + bonus from high wisdom, at 10th level you get 1 slot + bonus from high wisdom.

Sinfire Titan
2010-01-14, 05:15 PM
1: I forgot the SLA thing, still it explicitly requires XP costs for those SLAs, and it is a 5th level slot AND a slot of the level of the spell you want for 2x a day.
So celerity (a 4th level spell) means using a 4th level slot and a 5th level slot to get two 4th level slots back, bad choice.
Time stop however (one 9th level slot and one 5th level slot) is an excellent choice.

2: I know that, I meant where is it in the list, why is it not up there in tier 1


Wrong.


Spell-Like Ability
An archmage who selects this type of high arcana can use one of her arcane spell slots (other than a slot expended to learn this or any other type of high arcana) to permanently prepare one of her arcane spells as a spell-like ability that can be used twice per day. The archmage does not use any components when casting the spell, although a spell that costs XP to cast still does so and a spell with a costly material component instead costs her 10 times that amount in XP. This ability costs one 5th-level spell slot.

The spell-like ability normally uses a spell slot of the spellís level, although the archmage can choose to make a spell modified by a metamagic feat into a spell-like ability at the appropriate spell level.

The archmage may use an available higher-level spell slot in order to use the spell-like ability more often. Using a slot three levels higher than the chosen spell allows her to use the spell-like ability four times per day, and a slot six levels higher lets her use it six times per day.

No mention of using one of the same level, only the 5th level slot and one 3 levels above the chosen spell to get extra uses/day.

taltamir
2010-01-14, 05:47 PM
No mention of using one of the same level, only the 5th level slot and one 3 levels above the chosen spell to get extra uses/day.

reread it, it is right there

Spell-Like Ability
An archmage who selects this type of high arcana can use one of her arcane spell slots (other than a slot expended to learn this or any other type of high arcana) to permanently prepare one of her arcane spells as a spell-like ability that can be used twice per day. The archmage does not use any components when casting the spell, although a spell that costs XP to cast still does so and a spell with a costly material component instead costs her 10 times that amount in XP. This ability costs one 5th-level spell slot.

The spell-like ability normally uses a spell slot of the spellís level, although the archmage can choose to make a spell modified by a metamagic feat into a spell-like ability at the appropriate spell level.

The archmage may use an available higher-level spell slot in order to use the spell-like ability more often. Using a slot three levels higher than the chosen spell allows her to use the spell-like ability four times per day, and a slot six levels higher lets her use it six times per day.

if all it takes is a single 5th level slot, then your slot six level higher would be an 11th level slot. And those did not exist when the archmage was published, furthermore it explicitly states:

use one of her arcane spell slots (other than a slot expended to learn this or any other type of high arcana)
it is a slot used in addition to the slot paid for the high arcana. so 2 slots total

Examples:
use it with a fireball (SL3), it will take a level 3 slot and a level 5 slot and give you fireball 2 times a day.
use it with an empowered (+2) fireball (SL5) and it will take two level 5 slots for empowered fireball 2 times a day.
use it with a fireball (SL3) and a 9th level slot (6 levels higher) and it will take a 5th level slot (for the high arcanna) and a 9th level slot to give you fireball 6 times a day as an SLA

sonofzeal
2010-01-14, 08:14 PM
Not all Spell Focus' are equal. It boosts saving throw DCs. Thus, it's an acceptable choice in schools that provide lots of spells with saving throws. Not a great choice, but acceptable. Abjuration, though, makes very little use of this, making it a wasted feat.

Loremaster immediately replaces the wasted skill focus.

Archmage allows you to pick which Spell Focus you select, which is preferable. For archmage, being 5 level class isn't so important. It meshes well with a wild variety of other PrCs. The same is true of loremaster.



And a good dip class is still heavily useful. Neither class is bad if taken all the way, though.

The stuff Archmage provides are at least equal to very solid feats. At every level. SLA is abusable...master of shaping is awesome, Spell Power is great...you can never get your CL too high. Master of Elements is the equivalent of five seperate metamagics. Arcane Reach is awesome.

Counterspelling is build specific, I'll grant you, and arcane fire is weak, but that's really it.



Seriously? Three of those are "any metamagic or item crafting". You will have two of these, by virtue of being a wizard. It's a rare wizard that doesn't pick up another of one of those. Hell, many strong PrCs grant those as free feats too. Incantatrix does.

The free feat immediately replaces the skill focus loss....so, no cost, and you now have a higher knowledge check. Everything else you gain is a bonus. Every two levels, you get another feat-equivalent ability of your choice(mediocre feats, but still), and you gain other stuff as well.

You can take it briefly, or for quite a while...doesn't really matter, it's fine either way.
I think we're talking at cross purposes here. I'm not trying to argue either class is bad; they clearly aren't, and they're a reasonable choice for most Wizards and an improvement over straight Wizard levels. But... well, a bunch of weak (if free-ish) feats from Loremaster is nothing close to the sheer power of IotSV. It's a nasty nasty class even before you start riding around in an AMF with all your buffs intact, watching everyone else wither to uselessness while you tank with your powerful wardings, magic items, and uninterrupted spellcasting. It's not Planar Sheppard good, but it's one of the strongest Wizard PrCs out there.

Loremaster is fine, I've played one, I actually kind of like them. They aren't in the same category.

taltamir
2010-01-14, 09:23 PM
exactly, its not that archmage and loremaster aren't good, they are certainly better than the core wizard...

its that they are not even close to being in the same league as incantantrix, Iot7FV and planer shepard.

Speaking of the archmage abilities...
The SLA is not nearly as abuseable as people say. You are sacrificing versatility for more castings per day, making yourself closer to a sorcerer. it is a nice thing to take, but its not broken.
master of shaping is really not all that great, there aren't many worthwhile area of effect spells.
and arcane reach... well its nice that is true. But it is not as useful for a wizard due to lack of DMM persist.

that being said, those are all very nice abilities that I will always take given a choice, just not AS nice as they are made up to be here and not as nice as the truly broken PrCs

Sinfire Titan
2010-01-16, 05:29 PM
exactly, its not that archmage and loremaster aren't good, they are certainly better than the core wizard...

its that they are not even close to being in the same league as incantantrix, Iot7FV and planer shepard.

Speaking of the archmage abilities...
The SLA is not nearly as abuseable as people say. You are sacrificing versatility for more castings per day, making yourself closer to a sorcerer. it is a nice thing to take, but its not broken.
master of shaping is really not all that great, there aren't many worthwhile area of effect spells.
and arcane reach... well its nice that is true. But it is not as useful for a wizard due to lack of DMM persist.

that being said, those are all very nice abilities that I will always take given a choice, just not AS nice as they are made up to be here and not as nice as the truly broken PrCs

Thanks for pointing out that drawback.

The SLA ability is great when you have Greater Celerity or something that gives extra actions, as the casting time doesn't change.