PDA

View Full Version : Many, many attacks [Hydra Knight PrC]



Angry Bob
2010-04-18, 07:12 PM
The Hydra Knight

I wish I could find a picture for this. It would be pretty cool.

Hydra Knights are rare practitioners of a martial tradition based on quick movement, dramatic wielding, and raining a literal storm of attacks before an opponent has a chance to move.

This is an edited repost of the Hydra Knight from about a month ago. I hope it's improved. If it has, you can say so. I don't bite. Much.

Prerequisites
Base Attack Bonus: +4
Feats: Two-Weapon Fighting, Improved Initiative. Just to begin training as a Hydra Knight, a warrior must already have experience with unconventional or unexpected tactics.
Skills: Tumble 6, Sleight of Hand 6
Alignment: Any Chaotic

Skills: Balance, Bluff, Climb, Craft, Escape Artist, Intimidate, Jump, Profession, Sense Motive, Sleight of Hand, Tumble, Swim
Skills/Level: 2 + Int Mod
HD: d8

{table=head]Level | BAB | Fort | Ref | Will | Special
1st | +1 | +2 | +2| +0 | Bonus Weapon Proficiency, Hydra Style (Additional arm)
2nd | +2 | +3 | +3 | +0| Skirmish +1d6, Windmill Strike
3rd | +3 | +3 | +3 | +1| Hydra Style (Improved Two-Weapon Fighting), Fleet of Foot +10 ft.
4th | +4 | +4 | +4 | +1 | Skirmish +1d6 +1 AC
5th | +5 | +4 | +4 | +1 | Hydra Style (Additional Arm)
6th | +6 | +5 | +5 | +2 | Skirmish +2d6 +1 AC, Fleet of Foot +30 ft.
7th | +7 | +5 | +5 | +2 | Superior Mobility
8th | +8 | +6 | +6 | +2 | Hydra Style (Greater Two-Weapon Fighting), Skirmish +2d6 +2 AC
9th | +9 | +6 | +6 | +3 | Hydra Style (Full Off-hand attacks)
10th | +10 | +7 | +7 | +3 | Hydra Style(Additional Arm), Bladestorm[/table]

Class Features

Weapon/Armor Proficiency: A Hydra Knight gains no proficiency with any kind of armor or weapon.

Bonus Weapon Proficiency: At 1st level, a Hydra Knight gains a bonus weapon proficiency feat with any melee weapon of their choice.

Hydra Style: The core element of the Hydra Style is the ability to wield more weapons than should be possible, either by holding two weapons or more in one hand, holding a in their mouth, tying one to their clothes, or even juggling them.

At 1st level, a Hydra Knight is treated as though he had an additional arm for the purposes of being able to wield one-handed or smaller weapons. He may make as many attacks with weapons held in this "arm" as he can with his off hand, at the same attack bonuses.

At 3rd level, a Hydra Knight gains the Improved Two-Weapon Fighting feat as a bonus feat.

At 5th level, a Hydra Knight gains an additional virtual arm.

At 8th level, a Hydra Knight gains the Greater Two-Weapon Fighting feat as a bonus feat.

At 9th level, a Hydra Knight may make as many attacks with his off hand(s) as he can make with his primary hand, at the same base attack bonuses, with the usual penalties for two-handed fighting.

At 10th level, a Hydra Knight gains an additional virtual arm.

Hydra Style only functions while the Hydra Knight is wearing light or no armor.

Skirmish: At 2nd, 4th, 6th, and 8th levels, The Hydra Knight gains skirmish and skirmish bonuses as a Scout(CA)

Windmill Strike: At 2nd level, The Hydra Knight gains the pounce special ability.

Fleet of Foot: At 3rd level, a Hydra Knight gains a +10 ft increase to his land speed. At 6th level, this bonus increases to +30 ft. This ability only functions as long as the Hydra Knight is wearing light or no armor.

Superior Mobility: Beginning at 7th level, for a number of rounds each day equal to his class level, a Hydra Knight may act as though under the effect of a haste or freedom of movement spell. He may use both at once, but doing so counts at two rounds used of his allotted uses per day. This ability only functions while the Hydra Knight is wearing light or no armor.

Bladestorm: Once per day at 10th level, when a Hydra Knight charges an opponent, he may follow up with three full attacks instead of one. He can only use this as long as he is wearing light or no armor and you don't mind stalling the game for the next five minutes.

Hydra Knights in the world
The Hydra School is a style of fighting rather than a real organization. They often find their unique services in high demand in the military, but are unlikely to actually join - Hydra Knights chafe in tightly regimented groups, and usually wander off after about a week in such an outfit. More likely, they are lone wanderers or adventurers driven by a need to simultaneously prove themselves against new and strange enemies and show off to the world just how cool they are. They have something of a rivalry with followers of the Sublime Way, due to their similar styles but disparate approach to life in general.

Anarril
2010-04-18, 11:37 PM
I'm in doubt about this class.

On the one hand, doing lots and lots of attacks can be very very cool and the 'virtual arm' mechanic is nicely thought out.

On the other hand you run the risk of becoming a bit of a one trick pony and the mechanic might be exploitable. I mean, by virtue of the Hydra style ability alone at level 10 you have a X5 modifier on any extra attacks you can add to you main hand. That means that if you have a feat that gives you "one extra attack as part of a full attack, but all your attacks are at -2" then this class would make that "five extra attacks, but at -2". At level ten, a full attack means 15 separate attacks just from a straight up fighter without anything else. And all of these attacks can be done after a charge and add 2D6 skirmish damage (30D6 damage total), without doing anything like feats or gear to aid this. You also might want to put some thought into how it interacts with things like natural weapons and thrown weapons (daggers).

On the third hand (:smalltongue:), two weapon fighting was always inferior to two handed fighting when it came to damage. And both need to do a whole lot more before they touch casters so it might be ok.

Not much else to say on balance but I had to mention this: watch this (http://www.crunchyroll.com/media-537076/naruto-shippuden-143/) fight (specifically 4:10 through 5:25) to see this class in action. I thought of this character as soon as I read the first few abilities but then again, maybe so did you while designing this :smallwink:.

Angry Bob
2010-04-19, 05:10 PM
On the other hand you run the risk of becoming a bit of a one trick pony and the mechanic might be exploitable. I mean, by virtue of the Hydra style ability alone at level 10 you have a X5 modifier on any extra attacks you can add to you main hand. That means that if you have a feat that gives you "one extra attack as part of a full attack, but all your attacks are at -2" then this class would make that "five extra attacks, but at -2". At level ten, a full attack means 15 separate attacks just from a straight up fighter without anything else. And all of these attacks can be done after a charge and add 2D6 skirmish damage (30D6 damage total), without doing anything like feats or gear to aid this. You also might want to put some thought into how it interacts with things like natural weapons and thrown weapons (daggers).


I think one of us is misreading the ability. It's intended to treat virtual arms as off hands, and gain all the attacks an off hand would be entitled to, such as those granted by Improved and Greater TWF. How should the ability be worded to work that way if it's not?

I think it doesn't multiply natural weapons, since he only counts as having an additional arm for the purpose of wielding one-handed and smaller weapons. Maybe it should have a 'manufactured' clause.

On the other hand, I guess it works as worded with thrown weapons. But, does that push it into broken territory? I'm given to say unlikely.

The ballpark power level I'm looking for is, as a poster in the previous thread put it "ToB levels of melee mayhem without all of the built-in claims of "anime/wire-fu" pollution."

Knaight
2010-04-19, 06:45 PM
The ballpark power level I'm looking for is, as a poster in the previous thread put it "ToB levels of melee mayhem without all of the built-in claims of "anime/wire-fu" pollution."
You have ToB beat, and with something far more stylistic of anime. Still a good class, and it brings warriors up closer to where they need to be, but only if shooting for a target a bit higher than ToB. Sorcerer maybe.

DMofDarkness
2010-04-19, 07:09 PM
This class is fairly balanced in some scenarios, but very broken in others. Say, for example, a fighter with str 20, for example, got to 10th level in this class. Say the average weapon bonus would be +4 per weapon, say using bastard swords for each. The full attack would be: +27/+27/+27/+27/+27/+22/+22/+22/+22/+22/+17/+17/+17/+17/+17/+12/+12/+12/+12/+12.
Suppose the character was fighting a wyrm black dragon, AC 39. For the first 5 attacks, the character needs a 12 or higher to hit. There is a 40% chance, therefore, that any individual one hits. Say 2 hit, then. For the next 5 attacks, there is a 15% chance that the character hits. Say the character got lucky and got a hit. Nothing after that would hit. Each hit, assuming no power attacks, would deal 1d10 points of damage each, +9 from strength and enhancement bonus, +2d6 for the movement speed bonus. Overall, the damage would be around 65 points of damage per round. That's around 1/7 of the dragon's health. If the hydra blade used the bladestorm, the dragon would be at about 4/7 health, only a bit over half health. On round 1. Before the spellcaster. Without any optimization. This is only usable 1/day, but is still very powerful. Given another scenario, same circumstances, against 4 nightcrawlers, AC 35. There is a 60% chance that a given attack will hit.Lets say that they got 3 hits in. Then, there is a 35% chance that the next 5 will hit. Lets say that 1 does. Then, there is a 10% chance that the next 5 will hit. Lets be generous and say one does. That is 5 hits, dealing 108 points of damage. Bladestorm it, and then it deals a total of 324 points of damage dealt to a total of 848 hit points, 212 per crawler. That's one crawler down, one half dead, dead on the next round, and 2 left over at the end of the fighter's first turn, without any optimization. These challenges were meant to be challenging to an experienced 20th level party, and the hydra blade would be dishing out enormous quantities of damage per round. Against waves of innumerable foes, this class wouldn't even break a sweat to beat, with it's 16 attacks a round. But then again, it depends on the difficulty level of the campaign. That's my view of the class.

TheYoungKing
2010-04-19, 07:21 PM
As I understand it, you can't go above a certain number of attacks. This is in the Epic rules, on why increasing your BAB yields no additional attacks.

Knaight
2010-04-19, 07:35 PM
There is a 60% chance that a given attack will hit.Lets say that they got 3 hits in. Then, there is a 35% chance that the next 5 will hit. Lets say that 1 does. Then, there is a 10% chance that the next 5 will hit. Lets be generous and say one does. That is 5 hits, dealing 108 points of damage. Bladestorm it, and then it deals a total of 324 points of damage dealt to a total of 848 hit points, 212 per crawler. That's one crawler down, one half dead, dead on the next round, and 2 left over at the end of the fighter's first turn, without any optimization. These challenges were meant to be challenging to an experienced 20th level party, and the hydra blade would be dishing out enormous quantities of damage per round. Against waves of innumerable foes, this class wouldn't even break a sweat to beat, with it's 16 attacks a round. But then again, it depends on the difficulty level of the campaign. That's my view of the class.

Of course, they can take 10 on these attacks so the first hit reliably, and it is nothing on an ubercharger. And these challenges were not meant to be challenging to an experienced 20th level party, they were meant to wear them down a bit. An experienced 20th level party can take a CR 24 creature evenly, according to designer intent. These should be about on par with one character, and they are. Plus the Hydra Knight won't be sporting as much magic to attack with, DR renders some of their attacks completely irrelevant, as they get hit exceptionally hard and have sub standard magic items or limited good magic items, and even if they blow a 1/day ability 4 night crawlers still have a decent chance. They are balanced at high levels, and scale decently. The capstone has a minimum level of 15, which is fine, and before that they are consistently balanced. Certainly good, but the feat loss keeps them about equivalent to decently optimized fighter builds, or very well optimized ToB. And ultimately, all they do is still damage, and they are very limited to melee for power, so the comparison to night stalkers is them in their specialty shining. A pit fiend with the same CR could drop them, as could a decent archer.

Hyooz
2010-04-19, 08:52 PM
+27/+27/+27/+27/+27/+22/+22/+22/+22/+22/+17/+17/+17/+17/+17/+12/+12/+12/+12/+12.

This is the real problem I see with this class. That's twenty attacks. Are you kidding me? This class is the fastest route to getting yourself beat up by your group I can imagine.

FishAreWet
2010-04-19, 09:32 PM
Why Two-Weapon Fighting feats if you gain additional arms? Doesn't Multiweapon Fighting makes tons more sense?

Also, get ready for a Hasted Master Thrower with Halfling Skiprocks's attack breakdown:
+31//+31 / +31//+31 / +31//+31 / +31//+31 / +31//+31 / +31//+31 / +31//+31 / +31//+31 / +31//+31 / +31//+31 / +31//+31 / +31//+31 / +26//+26 /+26//+26 /+26//+26 /+26//+26 /+26//+26 /+26//+26 /+26//+26 / +21//+21/ +21//+21/ +21//+21/ +21//+21/ +21//+21/ +21//+21/ +21//+21 / +16//+16/ +16//+16/ +16//+16/ +16//+16/ +16//+16/ +16//+16/ +16//+16
If you don't feel like counting, thats 72 attacks. I love it.

Knaight
2010-04-19, 09:51 PM
This is the real problem I see with this class. That's twenty attacks. Are you kidding me? This class is the fastest route to getting yourself beat up by your group I can imagine.

This is why take 10 on attack rolls is so necessary in this case.

FishAreWet
2010-04-20, 12:49 AM
Changing the capstone to taking 10 on attacks would be great. That and maybe take the Hydra ability to full round attack as a Standard action? It synergies well with Skirmish is isn't that much more powerful then Pounce late game. It's also Hydra themed. :smallcool: Keep in mind that the taking 10 on attack rolls is a pretty significant nerf to this class, as 40 attack per round leads to many threatened critical hits. So the capstone needs to be more powerful then it otherwise would be to make up for this.

Superior Mobility: Class levels + Dex per day? Half class levels + Dex? I generally like /day things to be scalable more then just levels. But that's just me.

It requires some reworking but at level one the Hydra Knight needs to lose his TWF feat and gain Multiweapon fighting. Then as he progresses gain Imp/Greater/Perfect.

I'm in love with this class.

Milskidasith
2010-04-20, 01:08 AM
To anybody saying this somehow makes things on par with the sorcerer or the ToB: It doesn't (unless used by a ToB class).

It makes chargers hurt more, and (due to having 20 attacks) makes TWF pouncers a relevant type of ubercharger. But it's completely irrelevant to the tier, because fighters can already hit purely theoretical numbers while charging, and they are T5.

This makes TWF good, although it also makes it completely boring to roll so many dice (just for damage, assuming you take 10 on attacks every time), but it doesn't address the problems melee has with doing anything besides their schtick.

Also, even if this is mechanically powerful (which it is; it's strictly better than staying in another class as a TWF) it's also absurd, because 20 attacks is, even if totally inaccurate (which this really isn't) enough you're going to get books thrown at you, even when the optimized crowd control spellcaster isn't.

flabort
2010-04-20, 09:57 AM
well, light or no armor does notch this class down a bit, but it makes it all the more entising to add a level or two of other limited armor classes, such as monk, rouge, or wizard.

but yah... try adding sneak attack damage to all those attacks. BOOM!
Or Whirling frenzy. BOOM! BOOM!
Or both. BOOK! BOOKS! FLYING BOOKS!

Now, who wants to put together a gestalt build with this?

EvilJoe15
2010-04-20, 10:53 AM
Gestalt? That would mean getting sneak attack and time stands still:smalleek:

imp_fireball
2010-04-20, 02:56 PM
I was considering a feat for this (after seeing the guy in Naruto picking up his swords as he threw them)

42 Pick Up
Prerequisite: Quick Draw

Assuming you are within reach, or occupying the space of a dropped item, you may pick it up as a free action without provoking attacks of opportunity. You may stow away the item in your clothes or in your backpack (or other area that makes up your character's inventory) as a free action as well, however note that this does provoke attacks of opportunity. You may pick up to 42 items in this way in one round.

flabort
2010-04-20, 05:35 PM
that feat would make disarm for this guy the ultimate tactic.
Player: ...and with the disarm penalty, the 32nd attack is at... 29.
DM: The disarm check is successful. his sword falls to the ground...
Player: 42-pickup item number 6.
DM: ...and stops midway, falling nicely into your back pocket. I need to send a rust monster at you...

imp_fireball
2010-04-20, 11:37 PM
that feat would make disarm for this guy the ultimate tactic.
Player: ...and with the disarm penalty, the 32nd attack is at... 29.
DM: The disarm check is successful. his sword falls to the ground...
Player: 42-pickup item number 6.
DM: ...and stops midway, falling nicely into your back pocket. I need to send a rust monster at you...

Note that while picking up and holding a weapon in your hand is a free action, storing it away in your inventory (whether that's in your clothes, backpack, etc.) is a free action that provokes attacks of opportunity. So movement is the main limit.

EDIT: Then again unarmed means they don't make attacks of opportunity so yah... Ah well, the GM can just make people flank the guy instead of needing to send a rust monster.

Angry Bob
2010-04-21, 04:22 PM
Um.

The sense I'm getting is that he gets entirely too many extra attacks, leading to practical concerns(takes too much time, not enough dice, bookkeeping) as well as balance concerns. I figure if the most a melee type's going to be able to do is "I hit him again", it might as well accomplish something, rather than take a tiny notch out of the guy's total health before the wizard does this. (http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/07/21/episode-1154-epilepsy-warning-no-seriously/)

Also there's still the issue of TWF vs. Multiweapon. Point me at the Improved/Greater Multiweapon feats are and I'll replace them. Alternatively, I could just hash together some class features for it.

I would like to keep the virtual arms mechanic, but perhaps I could drop one of them and add another combat option or static bonus.

Also. The capstone. Is it acceptable?

DMofDarkness
2010-04-21, 04:50 PM
I think that the whole mess would be alot easier if each extra arm granted an additional attack at full base attack bonus. That way, they still get a large number of attacks in a round, and now, what happens is that you're simply dropping the attacks that won't often hit. It makes sense, too; how are you going to make 20 attacks per round while carefully juggling pieces of lethal weaponry that could easily slice your arms off as a standard action; a round is 6 seconds, the standard action is about 4 seconds; that would be 5 attacks per second juggling things that could deal as much damage to you if you missed them as they could do to your enemy. This way, they get 5 attacks at their full base attack bonus, and possibly consider that all 'arms' stabbing only once while the hydra blade rushes past. The word here is 'spring attack' + 'skirmish'.