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jiriku
2010-04-23, 12:51 AM
If you're like me, then in your D&D career you've encountered many players who are attracted to the flavor and style of the 3.5 monk class, and yet the monk's performance is so poor that the experience is often unsatisfying. Wouldn't it be great if you could rework the monk to have its same flavor and style, but perform well enough to keep up with the rest of the party? Sure, but that would take a huge amount of effort, wouldn't it? There must be someone, somewhere, who did all that work, who developed and playtested a better monk that's worthy of the name?

Look no further. The revised monk awaits.


Before we begin, a word for the monk's detractors:
Many things are probably entering your mind now. Let me attempt to answer your F.A.Q.s.

You know about the Monk Wars on this forum, right? Yup, sure do. And yet I love my players, and they want this. A good DM plays to his audience. Plus, I've come to love this monk class like one loves a crippled child. I want to see him run and play with all the other classes some day!
Why don't you just play an unarmed swordsage? Some of my players don't have ToB and are intimidated by the idea of learning a new system. Moreover, many of them just want Monk Classic.
Haven't you looked at the other homebrew monks in this forum? Sure have. I've stolen a number of ideas from them, but none are exactly what I need. In particular, classes that depart from the feel and flavor of the PHB monk, or classes that add new power systems like ki points or martial maneuvers, aren't appropriate to the player requests I'm trying to fill.


Design goals for the revised monk:

The apple shouldn't fall far from the tree. I want the class to feel like the PHB monk and play like the PHB monk, but to contribute more successfully to a wider variety of situations, and not inspire 20-page bile-filled forum arguments.
Can I haz party role now? The revised monk is intended to function as a melee-oriented dps skirmisher and skillmonkey, much like a rogue, ranger or scout (but without the wilderness focus of the latter two classes). It should also be able to step into other roles such as party face or infiltrator.
The target power/versatility level is a strong Tier 4.
MAD should be much reduced, with Wis primary, Dex secondary, and Con tertiary. Str, Int and Cha are not likely to be important stats for the revised monk.
The revised monk should be less gear-dependent than a typical character, as befits an ascetic scholar.




So without further ado, the revised monk!

{table=head]Level|Base Attack|Fort|Ref|Will|Special|Flurry (std)|Flurry (full)|Unarmed|AC|Speed
1st|+0|+2|+2|+2|Bonus feat, flurry of blows, empty mind, research, unarmed strike, versatile attack|-2/-2|-2/-2|1d6|+0|+0 ft.
2nd|+1|+3|+3|+3|Bonus feat, evasion|-1/-1|-1/-1|1d6|+0|+0 ft.
3rd|+2|+3|+3|+3|Empty strike, still mind, dance with the elements|+0/+0|+0/+0|1d6|+0|+10 ft.
4th|+3|+4|+4|+4|Ki strike +1, slow fall 20 ft.|+1/+1|+1/+1|1d8|+1|+10 ft.
5th|+3|+4|+4|+4|Wholeness of body, ki shot|+2/+2|+2/+2|1d8|+1|+10 ft.
6th|+4|+5|+5|+5|Bonus feat, slow fall 30 ft.|+3/+3|+3/+3|1d8|+1|+20 ft.
7th|+5|+5|+5|+5|Diamond body, tongue of the sun and moon|+4/+4|+4/+4|1d8|+1|+20 ft.
8th|+6/+1|+6|+6|+6|Abundant step, ki strike +2, slow fall 40 ft.|+5/+5|+5/+5/+0|2d6|+2|+20 ft.
9th|+6/+1|+6|+6|+6|Improved evasion|+6/+6|+6/+6/+1|2d6|+2|+30 ft.
10th|+7/+2|+7|+7|+7|Bonus feat, slow fall 50 ft.|+7/+7|+7/+7/+2|2d6|+2|+30 ft.
11th|+8/+3|+7|+7|+7|Diamond soul|+8/+8/+8|+8/+8/+8/+3|2d6|+2|+30 ft.
12th|+9/+4|+8|+8|+8|Ki strike +3, quivering palm, slow fall 60 ft.|+9/+9/+9|+9/+9/+9/+4|3d6|+3|+40 ft.
13th|+9/+4|+8|+8|+8|Empty step|+9/+9/+9|+9/+9/+9/+4|3d6|+3|+40 ft.
14th|+10/+5|+9|+9|+9|Bonus feat, slow fall 70 ft.|+10/+10/+10|+10/+10/+10/+5|3d6|+3|+40 ft.
15th|+11/+6/+1|+9|+9|+9|Empty body|+11/+11/+11|+11/+11/+11/+6/+1|3d6|+3|+50 ft.
16th|+12/+7/+2|+10|+10|+10|Ki strike +4, moment of perfection, slow fall 80 ft.|+12/+12/+12|+12/+12/+12/+7/+2|4d6|+4|+50 ft.
17th|+12/+7/+2|+10|+10|+10|Timeless body|+12/+12/+12|+12/+12/+12/+7/+2|4d6|+4|+50 ft.
18th|+13/+8/+3|+11|+11|+11|Bonus feat, slow fall 90 ft.|+13/+13/+13|+13/+13/+13/+8/+3|4d6|+4|+60 ft.
19th|+14/+9/+4|+11|+11|+11|Empty soul|+14/+14/+14|+14/+14/+14/+9/+4|4d6|+4|+60 ft.
20th|+15/+10/+5|+12|+12|+12|Ki strike +5, perfect self, slow fall any distance|+15/+15/+15|+15/+15/+15/+10/+5|6d6|+5|+60 ft.[/table]

Hit Die: d8
The monk's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Autohypnosis (Wis), Balance (Dex), Climb (Str), Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Decipher Script (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Escape Artist (Dex), Forgery (Int), Hide (Dex), Jump (Str), Knowledge (all skills, taken individually) (Int), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Perform (Cha), Profession (Wis), Search (Int), Sense Motive (Wis), Spot (Wis), Swim (Str), and Tumble (Dex).
Skill Points at 1st level: (8 + Int modifier) x 4.
Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 8 + Int modifier.


Design Notes:
Additional class skills and more skill points per level solidly cement the monk's role as a skill monkey. Compare to the rogue or scout.
CLASS FEATURES
All of the following are class features of the monk.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Monks are proficient with club, crossbow (light or heavy), dagger, handaxe, javelin, kama, nunchaku, quarterstaff, sai, shuriken, siangham, and sling. Monks are not proficient with any armor or shields. When wearing armor, using a shield, or carrying a medium or heavy load, a monk loses her AC bonus, as well as her fast movement and flurry of blows abilities.

Empty Mind (Ex): When unarmored and unencumbered, the monk adds her Wisdom bonus (if any) to her AC.


These bonuses to AC apply even against touch attacks or when the monk is flat-footed. She loses these bonuses when she is immobilized or helpless, when she wears any armor, when she carries a shield, or when she carries a medium or heavy load.

Design Notes:
Wis to AC has been broken out from the scaling class AC bonus so that I can offer the option of trading them away separately for alternate class features.

AC Bonus (Ex): At 4th level, a monk gains a +1 bonus to AC when unarmored and unencumbered. This bonus increases by 1 for every four monk levels thereafter (+2 at 8th, +3 at 12th, +4 at 16th, and +5 at 20th level).


These bonuses to AC apply even against touch attacks or when the monk is flat-footed. She loses these bonuses when she is immobilized or helpless, when she wears any armor, when she carries a shield, or when she carries a medium or heavy load.

Design Notes:
An improved AC progression now tracks with the bonuses an armor-wearing character can obtain from the magic vestment spell. Between this and the Empty Mind feature, the monk's AC should be competitive with that of the rogue or ranger.

Flurry of Blows (Ex): When unarmored, a monk may strike with a flurry of blows at the expense of accuracy when performing an attack or a full attack action, or as part of a charge. When doing so, she may make one extra attack in a round at her highest base attack bonus, but this attack takes a -2 penalty, as does each other attack made that round. The resulting modified base attack bonuses are shown in the Flurry of Blows Attack Bonus columns on Table: The Monk. This penalty applies for 1 round, so it also affects attacks of opportunity the monk might make before her next action. When a monk reaches 5th level, the penalty lessens to -1, and at 9th level it disappears.


When using flurry of blows, a monk may attack only with unarmed strikes or with special monk weapons, although she may use them interchangeably as desired. When flurrying with a weapon, a monk applies her Strength bonus (not Str bonus × 1˝ or ×˝) to her damage rolls, whether she wields a weapon in one or both hands.

A monk with the Combat Reflexes feat can declare a flurry of blows when taking an attack of opportunity.

A monk with Flyby Attack, Ride-By Attack, Shot on the run, Spring attack, or Swim-By Attack can combine flurry of blows with these feats to flurry on the move. If the monk obtains additional attacks via Bounding Assault or rapid Blitz, she gains the extra flurry attacks only once.

Greater Flurry: When a monk reaches 11th level, her flurry of blows ability improves. In addition to the standard single extra attack she gets from flurry of blows, she gets a second extra attack at her full base attack bonus.

Design Notes:
Stop the presses! Flurry of blows is usable on the move, and is compatible with builds that rely on charges or opportunity attacks.

Research: Monks are able scholars. You gain Research (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?p=11090621) as a bonus feat, ignoring prerequisites.

Unarmed Strike: At 1st level, a monk gains Improved Unarmed Strike as a bonus feat. A monk’s attacks may be with either fist interchangeably or even from elbows, knees, and feet. This means that a monk may even make unarmed strikes with her hands full. A monk can make off-hand attacks with unarmed strikes, and suffers no special penalty or hindrance for doing so. A monk may thus apply her full Strength bonus on damage rolls for all her unarmed strikes, or declare an unarmed strike as an off-hand weapon when fighting with two weapons (and would not take the additional -6 penalty for an off-hand attack when doing so).


A monk’s unarmed strike is treated both as a manufactured weapon and a natural weapon for the purpose of spells and effects that enhance or improve either manufactured weapons or natural weapons. This is also true for feats and class abilities that affect manufactured and natural weapons. Thus, a monk's unarmed strike qualifies for use with feats like Improved Natural Attack, Two-Weapon Fighting, and Weapon Focus.

A monk also deals more damage with her unarmed strikes than a normal person would, as shown on Table: The Monk. The unarmed damage on Table: The Monk is for Medium monks. A smaller or larger monk deals increases or decreases this damage as appropriate to her Size Category.

Design Notes:
Damage is increased somewhat, and now regularized to progress as if the monk was receiving size increases. This makes it easy to figure the correct damage for a monk under the effect of size-alteration magic.

Bonus Feat: At 1st level, a monk may select either Improved Grapple, Point Blank Shot, or Stunning Fist as a bonus feat. At 2nd level, she may select either Combat Reflexes, Deflect Arrows, or Rapid Shot as a bonus feat. At 6th level, she may select either Improved Disarm, Improved Trip, or Precise Shot as a bonus feat. At 10th level, a she may select either Improved Ki Defense, Improved Ki Strike, or Manyshot as a bonus feat. At 14th level, she may select either Earth's Embrace, Freezing the Lifeblood or Far Shot as a bonus feat. At 18th level, she may select either Crushing Strike, Driving Assault, or Slashing Flurry (the benefit applies only when she attacks with special monk weapons of the appropriate damage type, or with with unarmed strikes even if they are not of the appropriate damage type). A monk need not have any of the prerequisites normally required for these feats to select them. If she selects a bonus feat which she has already obtained using a previously-acquired feat slot, she may immediately retrain the earlier feat slot for free.


Design Notes:
New bonus feat options provide support for a monk-archer (especially if you use the new Esoteric Weapons Training feat below to gain the longbow as a special monk weapon).

Versatile Attack (Ex): A monk learns advanced martial arts that make her a more flexible attacker. While she is unarmored, she adds the better of her Strength or Dexterity bonuses to attack and damage with unarmed strikes and special monk weapons, and to all contested combat maneuvers (such as bull rush, disarm, grapple, overrun, sunder, or trip checks). A monk with Versatile Attack qualifies for prerequisites as if she had the Weapon Finesse feat.


Design Notes:
Versatile Attack reduces Multiple Attribute Dependency by allowing the monk to focus either on Strength or Dexterity (most probably Dexterity, although some builds will appreciate the ability to get Strength to hit with ranged weapons).

Evasion (Ex): At 2nd level or higher if a monk makes a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save, she instead takes no damage. Evasion can be used only if a monk is wearing light armor or no armor. A helpless monk does not gain the benefit of evasion.

Dance with the Elements (Ex): Where other adventurers practice rigorously with weapons or craft powerful magic items, the monk understands that devices are mere distractions. A wise master looks beyond rigid structures and perceives the dance of earth, air, fire, and water in the world. Then, she learns to dance with them. At 3rd level, a monk gains a bonus to her speed (which grants bonus to her Jump checks as normal; see the Jump skill for details), as shown on Table: The Monk. She also gains the same bonus as a competence bonus to her Balance, Jump, and Tumble checks. For example, a 3rd level monk gains +10 ft move speed and a +10 competence bonus to Balance, Jump, and Tumble, while an 18th level monk has a +60 ft move speed and a +60 competence bonus to Balance, Jump, and Tumble. A monk in armor or carrying a medium or heavy load loses these benefits.


Design Notes:
Replacing fast movement, this feature allows the monk to benefit from haste and other effects that provide enhancement bonuses to speed, and provides massive bonuses to acrobatic skills. This enables a mid-level monk to meet the DCs for epic uses of Balance, Jump, and Tumble, and pull off dramatic wuxia-style maneuvers such as running across water or up the side of a wall, climbing a tree by leaping up from branch to branch, or jumping up onto rooftops or over alleyways. Tactically, this helps overcome the monk's limited ranged attack options, as it becomes easier to get within striking distance of a difficult-to-reach opponent.

Empty Strike (Ex): At 3rd level, a monk learns to empty her mind of all desire and expectation and strike free from worldly worries. While she is unarmored, she adds her Wisdom bonus to attack and damage with unarmed strikes and special monk weapons, and to all contested combat maneuvers (such as bull rush, disarm, grapple, overrun, sunder, or trip checks).


Design Notes:
Empty Strike allows the monk to hit and execute combat maneuvers like grapple and trip as effectively as a character with a full base attack bonus.

Still Mind (Ex): A monk of 3rd level or higher gains a +2 bonus on saving throws against spells and effects from the school of enchantment.

Ki Strike (Su): At 4th level, the intensity of the monk's ki focus grants her a +1 enhancement bonus to attack and damage rolls with her unarmed strikes, and her unarmed strikes gain the magic descriptor and bypass DR/magic. For each four additional monk levels she gains, her enhancement bonus to attack and damage while unarmed increases by an additional +1, and she may select and one of the following weapon qualities: adamantine, alchemical silver, cold iron, or lawful. Her unarmed strikes gain that quality and bypass damage reduction accordingly. A monk with adamantine ki strike bypasses hardness when attacking objects with her unarmed strike.


Design Notes:
The improved ki strike offers more choice and flexibility in bypassing damage reduction and eliminates the numbers gap between a bare-fisted monk and a character with a magic weapon. It also makes the monk less gear-dependent.

Slow Fall (Ex): At 4th level or higher, a monk learns to balance upon the sky. She can fall the listed distance without taking harm, and reduces the effective distance of longer falls by the same amount when determining how much falling damage she takes.


Design Notes:
The new slow fall frees the monk from wall dependency, which is a good thing since Dance of the Elements makes it likely that the revised monk will find herself in precarious situations more often.

Wholeness of Body (Su): At 5th level or higher, a monk can use a standard action to heal a creature's wounds with a touch, much as a paladin can. She can heal a number of hit points of damage equal to her monk level times her Wisdom bonus (minimum +1) each day, and she can spread this healing out among several uses.


Design Notes:
Wholeness of body now heals more and can help your friends.

Ki Shot (Su): Beginning at 5th level, a monk learns to embrace the tranquility and grace of the perfect shot, and may empower ranged attacks with ki. Once per day, she may ignore range increment penalties with special monk weapons and apply her ki strike to any ranged attacks she makes with special monk weapons for one round. If she has the Stunning Fist feat, she may use this ability additional times per day by expending a use of Stunning Fist for each additional use of Ki Shot.


Design Notes:
Improving the monk's ranged capabilities. At its basic level, this feature is nothing special, but when combined with Esoteric Weapon Training (longbow), Improved Ki Strike, and Stunning Fist, the monk can deliver formidable ranged attacks.

Tongue of the Sun and Moon (Ex): A monk of 7th level or higher can speak with any living creature, and may use her Wisdom modifier in place of her Charisma modifier on Diplomacy checks and Handle Animal checks.


Design Notes:
TotSM is now gained at a more level-appropriate point in the monk's career, and now actually help you negotiate with those creatures you can speak to. Wis to negotiation skills also further reduces the monk's MAD.

Diamond Body (Su): At 7th level, a monk gains immunity to poisons and diseases of all kinds, even those that are magical in nature.


Design Notes:
Breaking the usual rule that only magic can defeat magic, the monk now resists magical poisons and diseases.

Abundant Step (Su): At 8th level or higher, a monk can slip magically between spaces, as if using the spell dimension door, a number of times per day equal to her Wisdom bonus (minimum 1). Her caster level for this effect is equal to her character level.


Design Notes:
Usable more often, and over a greater distance, to be a credible competitor with casters using dimension door

Improved Evasion (Ex): At 9th level, a monk’s evasion ability improves. She still takes no damage on a successful Reflex saving throw against attacks, but henceforth she takes only half damage on a failed save. A helpless monk does not gain the benefit of improved evasion.

Diamond Soul (Ex): At 11th level, a monk gains spell resistance equal to her monk level + 10. Unlike spell resistance gained from other sources, the monk can automatically choose to waive her resistance without taking an action whenever she would be affected by a spell, so long as she is conscious. When she is unconscious, her spell resistance does not block harmless spells (such as healing spells), but will interfere with any other spells that would affect her.


Design Notes:
Spell resistance on a PC is normally a trap because of the hoops you have to jump through in order to lower it for beneficial spells. I removed the hoops.

Quivering Palm (Su): Starting at 12th level, a monk can set up vibrations within the body of another creature that can thereafter be fatal if the monk so desires. She can use this quivering palm attack a number of times per day equal to her Wisdom bonus (minimum 1), and she must announce her intent before making her attack roll. Creatures immune to critical hits cannot be affected unless the monk has some means of bypassing the creature's immunity to critical hits. Otherwise, if the monk strikes successfully and the target takes damage from the blow, the quivering palm attack succeeds. Thereafter the monk can try to slay the victim at any later time, as long as the attempt is made within 30 days. To make such an attempt, the monk merely wills the target to die (a free action), and unless the target makes a Fortitude saving throw (DC 10 + ˝ the monk’s level + the monk’s Wis modifier), it dies. If the saving throw is successful, the target is no longer in danger from that particular quivering palm attack, but it may still be affected by another one at a later time.


Design Notes:
Quivering palm as written was a colossal insult to monk players, an awkward, difficult-to-use ability that hardly ever influenced play, received at a time when casters could reliably slay with a word several times per day. Now usable more often, and it's possible to nova it during a flurry for extra-brutal stompdown.

Empty Step (Su): At 13th level or higher, a monk can slip magically between spaces for even longer periods, as if using the spell swift etherealness, a number of times per day equal to her Wisdom bonus (minimum 1). Her caster level for this effect is equal to her character level.


Design Notes:
Empty body's little brother, this keeps the monk effective as an infiltrator at higher levels when barriers become more complex than mere locked doors and stone walls, and allows the monk to compete a little better in high-level "rocket tag" combats where getting hit at the wrong moment can result in instant death.

Empty Body (Su): At 15th level, a monk gains the ability to assume an ethereal state for a number of rounds per day equal to her monk level times her Wisdom bonus (minimum +1), as though using the spell etherealness. She may go ethereal on a number of different occasions during any single day, as long as the total number of rounds spent in an ethereal state does not exceed her daily limit. Her caster level for this effect is equal to her character level.


Design Notes:
Now gained at a more level-appropriate point, and usable more often.

Moment of Perfection (Su): At 16th level, the monk is nearing enlightenment, and can align herself perfectly with the universe to achieve a single moment of perfection. She can add her monk level as an insight bonus to any one attack roll, opposed skill or ability check, or saving throw, or to her AC against any one attack, as if calling upon the effect of a moment of prescience spell with a caster level equal to her monk level. She can use this ability once per encounter.


Design Notes:
Can be used to become highly effective in social situations, and also serves as yet another panic button to escape certain peril when in combat.

Timeless Body (Ex): Upon attaining 17th level, a monk no longer takes penalties to her ability scores for aging and cannot be magically aged. Any such penalties that she has already taken, however, remain in place. Bonuses still accrue, and the monk still dies of old age when her time is up.

Empty Soul (Su): Upon reaching 19th level, a monk achieves a state of complete emptiness, reacting to all situations without premeditation or thought. She continuously gains the benefits of the foresight spell unpon her person at all times.


Design Notes:
The monk is now impossible to surprise. Empty Soul combines well with Empty Step and Moment of Perfection, allowing her to know what sort of trouble is coming and which class feature will help avoid it.

Perfect Self (Ex): At 20th level, a monk becomes a magical creature and her type changes to outsider. When targeted by spells and magical effects that consider her type, she may choose whether to be considered an outsider or a member of her former type, whichever is most advantageous. Additionally, the monk gains damage reduction 15/chaotic. Unlike other outsiders, the monk can still be brought back from the dead as if she were a member of her previous creature type.


Design Notes:
Perfect Self is commonly considered another trap, since outsider status is a double-edged sword and the damage reduction granted is not very useful in high-level play. I removed the trap and improved the damage reduction.

The default presentation here assumes a lawful monk, but if the player and DM agree that a monastic order with a different alignment bent is reasonable, this damage reduction should be modified appropriately to match the monk's alignment.

Change Log:
Reduced skillpoints to accomodate a more stereotypical D&D setting, since the description of my treatment of skill points is apparently tl;dr.
Reduced DR from 20 to 15.
Added Dance with the Elements, a scaled ability that improves Balance, Jump and Climb.
Added a note specifying how Flurry of Blows interacts with feats that allow a character to combine movement and other actions.
Revised the class table to make the Flurry of Blows attack progression easier to understand.
Added additional bonus feat options for an archery-focused monk.
Removed the requirement to be near a wall in order to use Slow Fall.
Reformatted the entire description to include more detailed descriptions of class features, design notes calling out all changes, and some minor tweaks to the upper-level abilities.
Divided Empty Strike class feature into Versatile Attack, gained at 1st level, and Empty Strike, gained at 3rd level.
Converted Trapfinding and associated class skills (Disable Device, Open Lock) into an ACF. Monk now has and can sacrifice Research and associated class skills (Decipher Script, Forgery) to have them.

jiriku
2010-04-23, 12:52 AM
NEW FEATS FOR MONKS


IMPROVED KI DEFENSE [General, Monk]
You have learned to better focus your ki defensively, and your foes find it more difficult to harm you.
Prerequisites: Wisdom 13, Monk AC bonus +2 or skirmish AC bonus +2, base attack bonus +6, Autohypnosis 15 ranks
Benefits: As long as you are wearing no armor and carrying no more than a light load, your class-based AC bonus improves by +1, and you gain an enhancement from the following table, provided you meet its prerequisites. This is a supernatural ability.
With eight hours of rest, you may spend an hour practicing a series of ki-focusing exercises to redesignate the special enhancement provided by this feat. If you also have Improved Ki Strike, you may change your choices for both feats at this time.
Advancement: If you have ki strike +5, base attack +15, and Perfect Self, your existing DR 15/chaotic becomes DR 20/chaotic and epic.
Special: A monk may select Improved Ki Defense as a bonus feat at 10th level, even if he does not meet the prerequisites.


{table]Prerequisites|Enhancement|Source
AC Bonus +2, BAB +6|Acidic|MiC 6
|Anchoring|MiC 6
|Ectoplasmic feedback|MiC 10
|Light fortification|DMG 219
|Mobility|MiC 13
|Styptic|MiC 15
AC Bonus +3, BAB +9|Anchoring, greater|MiC 6
|Axeblock|MiC 7
|Blurring, greater|MiC 7
|Hammerblock|MiC 12
|Retaliation|MiC 14
|Spearblock|MiC 14
AC Bonus +4, BAB +12|Moderate fortification|DMG 219
|Invulnerability|DMG 219
|Roaring|MiC 14
AC Bonus +5, BAB +15|Radiant|MiC 13
|Soulfire|BoED 112[/table]


IMPROVED KI STRIKE [General, Monk]
You have learned to better focus your ki offensively, and can imbue your attacks with unusual effects.
Prerequisites: Wisdom 13, Ki Strike +2, base attack bonus +6, Autohypnosis 15 ranks
Benefit: As long as you are wearing no armor and carrying no more than a light load, the enhancement bonus of your ki strike improves by +1, and you gain an enhancement from the following table, provided you meet its prerequisites. This is a supernatural ability.
With eight hours of rest, you may spend an hour practicing a series of ki-focusing exercises to redesignate the special enhancement provided by this feat. If you also have Improved Ki Defense, you may change your choices for both feats at this time.
Advancement: If you have ki strike +5 and base attack +15, your unarmed strikes gain the epic descriptor and bypass DR/epic.
Special: A monk may select Improved Ki Strike as a bonus feat at 10th level, even if he does not meet the prerequisites.
If you have a favored enemy, you may choose bane (DMG 224, keyed against one of your favored enemies) or hunting (MiC 36). If you also have ki strike +3 and base atack +9, you may instead choose fiercebane (MiC 35, keyed against one of your favored enemies).
If you have sneak attack or sudden strike, you may choose deadly precision (MiC 32).
If you have a smite ability, you may choose mighty smiting (MiC 38).
If you have power points, you may choose mindfeeder (MiC 38).
If you have Versatile Unarmed Strike, you may choose keen (DMG 225), which functions as long as you deal slashing or piercing damage.
If you have a supernatural ability drain or energy drain ability, ki strike +4, and base attack +12, you may choose necrotic focus (MiC 29).
If you can use bardic music, you may choose harmonizing (MiC 35), but you will look very silly.

{table]Prerequisites|Enhancement|Source
ki strike +2, BAB +6|brutal surge|MiC 30
|Corrosive|MiC 31
|Defending|DMG 224
|Deflecting|CWar 134
|Flaming|DMG 224
|Frost|DMG 224
|Ghost touch|DMG 224
|Impact|MiC 37
|Last resort|CWar 135
|Magebane|MiC 38
|Maiming|MiC 28
|Merciful|DMG 225
|Resounding|MiC 42
|Revealing|MiC 42
|Shattermantle|MiC 43
|Shock|DMG 225
|Spellstrike|MiC 44
|Sundering|MiC 44
|Sweeping|MiC 44
|Thundering|DMG 225
|Vicious|DMG 226
|Warning|MiC 46
|Waterborn|Eb 266
|Weakening|MiC 46
Ki strike +3, BAB +9|Acidic burst|MiC 28
|Axiomatic|DMG 228
|Collision|MiC 31
|Disarming|CWar 134
|Doom burst|MiC 33
|Enervating|MiC 34
|Flaming burst|DMG 224
|Icy burst|DMG 225
|Impedance|MiC 37
|Incorporeal binding|MiC 38
|Parrying|MiC 40
|Psychokiesis|MiC 41
|Shocking burst|DMG 225
|Souldrinking|MiC 44
|Vampiric|MiC 45
|Wounding|DMG 226
Ki strike +4, BAB +12|Bodyfeeder|MiC 30
|Ethereal reaver|MiC 34
|Implacable|MiC 37
|Psychokinetic burst|MiC 41
|Speed|DMG 225
Ki strike +5, BAB +15|Brilliant energy|DMG 226[/table]


Commentary on Improved Ki Defense and Improved Ki Strike
A design goal of these feats was that they should be significantly more powerful than regular feats, but essentially only available to the monk class. I wanted to offer a menu of options to the monk player without simply creating a monk spell list, and this fulfills that goal while also fulfilling my goal of making the monk less gear-dependent.
All of the abilities were chosen with the following constraints in mind:

Should be realistic when applied to a monk's body (so throwing and sizing are right out, for example).
Should not offer a save. An SLA would be Charisma-based, and I want to discourage MAD. Further, the players likely to play a monk in my campaigns tend to be bad at calculating save DCs, so the stunning fist will already be keeping them busy.
Should be always on or usable an unlimited number of times per day. The base monk class already has a large number of limited-use abilities to track; I don't want to add any more.



ASCETIC NATURALIST [General]
You belong to a special order of religious monks that teaches its adherents that enlightenment can best be achieved through closeness with the natural world. As a student of this philosophy, you have blended your training as a druid and a monk into one seamless whole.
Prerequisites: Improved Unarmed Strike, wild shape class ability
Benefit: While in a wild shape, your natural weapons count as special monk weapons, and you may use natural weapons to deliver stunning fist attempts.
Your monk and druid levels stack when determining your unarmed strike progression, monk AC bonus progression, and wild shape progression.
In addition, Handle Animal becomes a monk class skill for you and Autohypnosis becomes a druid class skill for you. This does not apply retroactively to any skill points you have already allocated.
Special: If you have both the Still Mind and Resist Nature's Lure class features, you gain the Slippery Mind ability (as the rogue ability), but only against enchantment effects originating from creatures of the fey type.

ESOTERIC WEAPONS TRAINING [General, Monk]
Your monastic training includes practice with an unusual weapon, one not commonly found among monastic orders.
Prerequisite: Flurry of Blows class ability (or ACF acquired by trading out FoB)
Benefit: Select a one-handed, light, or ranged weapon that requires martial weapon proficiency, or any simple weapon. You gain proficiency with this weapon, and it is considered a special monk weapon for you.
Advancement: If you have the Moment of Perfection class feature, you gain the following ability:

Expend a use of Moment of Perfection and perform a flurry with the selected weapon: Every attack roll you make as part of the flurry adds the insight bonus from Moment of Perfection and ignores concealment and total concealment (although you must still target the right square).



REVISED FEATS FOR MONKS

Note: the feats revised below represent a significant change in power, scale and design from the source material, and directly attack the stereotype that "melee can't have nice things". While the names may be familiar, each feat has been radically modified to make it more effective or to exploit new game mechanics. Many feats scale in power as you advance in level and/or accumulate additional resources.

While I don't expect them to be overpowered in campaigns that see heavy use of strong feats like Leap Attack, Shock Trooper, Robilar's Gambit, Arcane Thesis, or Practical Metamagic, DMs who are accustomed to low-power, low-optimization campaigns where Weapon Specialization and Spring Attack are considered the height of power may wish to think carefully before allowing these feat revisions. If you're permitting the revised monk, you probably aren't going to be concerned about these feats, but as with all things found on the internet, caveat emptor.


ASCETIC HUNTER [General]
You have gone beyond the bounds of your monastic training to incorporate new modes of bringing the unlawful to justice. Although many of your fellow monks frown on your methods, none can doubt that your diverse training has added to your ability to strike precisely and bring down your foes quickly.
Prerequisites: Improved unarmed strike, favored enemy
Benefit: When you use an unarmed strike or special monk weapon to deliver a stunning attack (or other special attack that expends stunning fist uses) against a favored enemy, increase the DC of the effect by your favored enemy bonus.
Your monk and ranger levels stack when determining your unarmed strike progression and your favored enemy progression. If you replace either of these features via an alternate class feature, your monk and ranger levels stack when determining the progression of that alternate feature.
In addition, Survival becomes a monk class skill for you and Autohypnosis becomes a ranger class skill for you. This does not apply retroactively to any skill points you have already allocated.

ASCETIC KNIGHT [General]
You belong to a special order of religious monks that teaches its adherents that self-enlightement and honorable service grow from the same well of purity. As a student of this philosophy, you have blended your training as a paladin and a monk into one seamless whole.
Prerequisite: Improved Unarmed Strike, Smite ability, Divine Grace ability
Benefit: When you use an unarmed strike or special monk weapon to deliver a smite and a stunning attack (or other special attack that expends stunning fist uses), increase the DC of the effect by your Divine Grace bonus.
Your paladin and monk levels stack when determining your unarmed strike progression and smite progression. If you replace either of these features via an alternate class feature, your monk and paladin levels stack when determining the progression of that alternate feature.
In addition, Ride becomes a monk class skill for you and Autohypnosis becomes a paladin class skill for you. This does not apply retroactively to any skill points you have already allocated.

ASCETIC MAGE [General]
You practice an unusual martial art that mixes self-taught spellcasting and melee attacks to great effect.
Prerequisite: Improved Unarmed Strike, ability to spontaneously cast 2nd-level arcane spells.
Benefit: As a swift action that doesn't provoke attacks of opportunity, you can sacrifice one of your daily allotment of spells to add a bonus to your unarmed strike attack and damage rolls for 1 round. The bonus is equal to the level of the spell sacrificed. The spell is lost as if you had cast it.
Your sorcerer and monk levels stack when determining your unarmed strike progression and your monk AC bonus Progression. You use Charisma instead of Wisdom as the primary ability for your monk class features. If you replace either of these features via an alternate class feature, your monk and sorcerer levels stack when determining the progression of that alternate feature.
In addition, Spellcraft becomes a monk class skill for you and Autohypnosis becomes a sorcerer class skill for you. This does not apply retroactively to any skill points you have already allocated.

ASCETIC ROGUE [General]
You have gone beyond the bounds of your monastic training to incorporate new modes of stealthy combat. Although your fellow monks may frown on your methods, none can doubt that your diverse training has improved your ability to strike precisely and bring down your foes quickly.
Prerequisite: Improved Unarmed Strike, sneak attack +2d6.
Benefit: When you use an unarmed strike or special monk weapon with a sneak attack to deliver a stunning attack, you add 2 to the DC of your stunning attempt.
Your monk and rogue levels stack when determining your unarmed strike progression and sneak attack progression. In addition, Bluff becomes a monk class skill for you and Autohypnosis becomes a rogue class skill for you. This does not apply retroactively to any skill points you have already allocated.
Special: If you replace either the monk's unarmed strike damage progression or the rogue's sneak attack with an alternate class feature, your monk and rogue levels stack when determining the progression of that alternate feature. You may still qualify for this feat, although its prerequisites will differ. Your DM will assign an appropriate set of replacement prerequisites.

AXIOMATIC STRIKE [General]
You can turn your fist into an instrument of law.
Prerequisite: Ki Strike (lawful)
Benefit: Your unarmed strikes become axiomatic weapons, dealing 2d6 bonus damage to chaotic creatures and creatures with the chaotic subtype or DR/lawful.
Advancement: If you have base attack +11 or greater, your unarmed strikes become axiomatic burst weapons. In addition to the bonus damage above, you deal 2d10 damage whenever you score a critical hit against a creature vulnerable to your axiomatic strike.

EAGLE CLAW ATTACK [General]
Your superior insight allows you to strike objects with impressive force.
Prerequisites: Wis 13, Improved Sunder, Improved Unarmed Strike
Benefit: When you make an unarmed strike against an object, you may ignore 5 points of hardness for every feat you have which requires Improved Unarmed Strike as a prerequisite (including this one).
Advancement: If you have either ki strike (adamantine) or at least five feats (including this one) which require Improved Unarmed Strike as a prerequisite, then you may ignore all hardness when attacking objects with your unarmed strikes.

EARTH'S EMBRACE [General, Monk]
You can crush opponents when you grapple them.
Prerequisites: Improved Unarmed Strike, Improved Grapple, Strength 15
Benefit: When grappling, if you pin your opponent, you deal critical unarmed strike damage each round that you maintain the pin, as if you had rolled a natural 20 and confirmed a critical. If you receive bonus attacks or damage because of effects that trigger when you score a critical hit, these effects are rolled normally but may not also become critical hits.

FIERY FIST [Fighter, General]
By channeling your ki energy, you sheath your limbs in magical fire. Your unarmed strikes deal extra fire damage.
Prerequisites: Dex 13, Wis 13, Improved Unarmed Strike, Stunning Fist, base attack bonus +8.
Benefit: As a swift action, you can expend one of your uses of the Stunning Fist feat to surround your fists and feet in flame. For the rest of your turn, your unarmed strikes deal an additional 1d6 fire damage, +1 per character level yo have.
When you select this feat, you gain an additional daily use of Stunning Fist.
Advancement: If you have at least three feats that require improved unarmed strike as a prerequisite, the damage is 2d6 plus 1/character level. If you have at least six feats that require improved unarmed strike as a prerequisite, the damage is 3d6 plus 1/character level.
Special: A monk with the Stunning Fist feat can select Fiery Fist as her bonus feat at 2nd level, ignoring the other prerequisites.

FIERY KI DEFENSE [Fighter, General]
You channel your ki energy into a cloak of flame that injures all who attempt to strike you.
Prerequisites: Dex 13, Wis 13, Fiery Fist, Improved Unarmed Strike, Stunning Fist, base attack bonus +8.
Benefit: As a swift action, you can expend one of your uses of the Stunning Fist feat to cloak yourself in flame. You gain fire resistance of 5 x the number of feats you have that require Improved Unarmed Strike as a prerequisite, and any creature that strikes you with a melee attack takes 1d6 fire damage, +1 per character level you possess.
When you select this feat, you gain an additional daily use of Stunning Fist.
Advancement: If you have at least three feats that require improved unarmed strike as a prerequisite, the damage is 2d6 plus 1/character level. If you have at least six feats that require improved unarmed strike as a prerequisite, the damage is 3d6 plus 1/character level.


FISTS OF IRON [General]
You have learned the secrets of imbuing your unarmed attacks with extra force.
Prerequisites: Improved Unarmed Strike, Stunning Fist, base attack bonus +2
Benefits: Expend a use of Stunning Fist and make an unarmed strike. If you hit, your attack deals damage as if it was of a larger size category. This benefit does not stack with other effects that cause your unarmed strike to deal damage as if it was larger in size. Your maximum "effective size" when using this feat is Colossal.
Advancement: If you have base attack +8 or greater, your unarmed strike functions as if it were two sizes larger. If you have base attack +15 or greater, your unarmed strike functions as if it were three sizes larger.
Advancement: If you have ki strike +5, base attack +15, and the Improved Ki Strike feat, your maximum "effective size" is not limited to Colossal.

FLYING KICK [General]
You literally leap into battle, dealing devastating damage.
Prerequisites: Str 13, Jump 4 ranks, Improved Unarmed Strike, Power Attack
Benefit: Your unarmed strikes deal double damage on a charge.

FREEZING THE LIFEBLOOD [General]
You can paralyze an opponent with an unarmed attack.
Prerequisites: Wis 17, Improved Unarmed Strike, Stunning Fist, base attack bonus +10
Benefit: Expend a use of Stunning Fist and make a touch attack with your unarmed strike. If you hit, you deal no damage, but your opponent is paralyzed (Fort negates, DC 10 + ˝ your character level + your Wis bonus). This paralysis lasts 1 round for each feat you have which requires Improved Unarmed Strike as a prerequisite (including this one). The Fortification ability offers protection from this attack.

PAIN TOUCH [General]
You cause intense pain in an opponent with a successful stunning attack.
Prerequisites: Wis 15, Improved Unarmed Strike, Stunning Fist, base attack +2
Benefit: Victims of your stunning attack are subjected to such debilitating pain that they are nauseated following the round they are stunned. This nauseated condition lasts 1 round for every feat you have which requires Improved Unarmed Strike as a prerequisite (including this one).

RAPID STUNNING [General]
You can use your stunning attacks in rapid succession.
Prerequisites: Combat Reflexes, Stunning Fist, base attack bonus +6.
Benefits: You are no longer limited in the number of stunning attacks you may declare each round.
Normal: You may only declare a stunning attack once per round.

ROUNDABOUT KICK [General]
You can follow up on a particularly powerful unarmed attack with a mighty kick, spinning in a complete circle before landing the kick.
Prerequisites: Str 15, Improved Unarmed Strike, Power Attack
Benefit: If you score a critical hit with an unarmed strike, immediately take a bonus attack using the same attack bonus that you used for the original roll.
Advancement: If you have Power Critical, the follow-up attack is at +4 to hit and damage.
If you have Improved Critical, the follow-up attack is made at your highest base attack bonus, even if the initial attack was one of your iterative attacks taken at a -5, -10, or -15 penalty.

SUN SCHOOL [Tactical]
You have learned a number of esoteric martial arts techniques inspired by the sun.
Prerequisites: Flurry of Blows ability, base attack bonus +4
Benefit: The Sun School feat enables the use of three tactical maneuvers.

Inexorable Progress of Dawn: To use this maneuver, you must strike your foe twice while using a flurry of blows. Your foe must move back 5 feet, and you may move forward 5 feet if you wish. Neither of you provokes opportunity attacks for this movement.

Blinding Sun of Noon: To use this maneuver, you must successfully stun your foe two rounds in a row with a stunning blow. The opponent is confused for five minutes.

Flash of Sunset: To use this maneuver, you must move adjacent to a foe using a teleportation effect, such as the dimension door spell or the monk's Abundant Step class feature. You gain a bonus standard action which can only be used to take an attack against that foe. You may flurry with your attack if you wish. This extra action is an exception to the standard rules for dimension door, which state that you may not take any actions after using a dimension door.

WEAKENING TOUCH [Fighter, General]
You can temporarily weaken an opponent with your unarmed strike.
Prerequisites: Wis 17, Improved Unarmed Strike, Stunning Fist, base attack bonus +2
Benefit: Expend a use of Stunning Fist and make a touch attack with your unarmed strike. If you hit, you deal no damage but your target takes a -8 penalty to Strength. This penalty lasts for 5 minutes, and does not stack with itself. The Fortification ability offers protection against this attack.
Advancement: If you have at least three feats that require Improved Unarmed Strike, the target is also fatigued. If you have at least six feats that require Improved Unarmed Strike, the target is also exhausted.

jiriku
2010-04-23, 12:53 AM
MONK ALTERNATIVE CLASS FEATURES


CRASH LIKE A WAVE, BEND LIKE A REED
At 1st level, you may choose to trade in your level-based AC bonus and increased unarmed strike damage. You gain the skirmish class feature instead, which applies whenever you attack with an unarmed strike or a special monk weapon while wearing no armor. Whenever you gain levels in a class that would improve your monk unarmed strike progression, it instead improves your skirmish progression. If you choose this alternate class feature, the Superior Unarmed Strike feat improves your base unarmed strike damage instead of increasing your effective monk level. You may multi-class freely with ranger, and you qualify for the Swift Hunter feat as if your monk levels were levels in the scout class.


Commentary:

This ACF reinforces the monk's role as a fast-moving skirmisher and enables him to use monk weapons without taking a hit to his damage output at higher levels.
Small monks will appreciate it as well, as it replaces a damage booster that is size-dependent with one that is not. This ACF also opens up some interesting possibilities for monk/ranger multiclass combinations.
Normally skirimish is a bit of a downer because it restricts your full attack, but the monk doesn't get an iterative until level 8, and by level 9 his Tumble bonus from Dance with the Elements is high enough to take 10' (instead of 5') adjustments, so the revised monk can qualify for skirmish on a full attack pretty routinely.


DECISIVE STRIKE
If you select the Decisive Strike Alternate Class Feature (PH2), you may execute a decisive strike as a standard action, rather than a full-round action.


Commentary:
Since the revised monk can flurry as a standard action, it makes sense that Decisive Strike, which replaces flurry, should also become a standard action.

MANHUNTER
Level: 1st
Replaces: If you select this class feature, you do not gain Research as a bonus feat at 1st level, nor do you gain Decipher Script or Forgery as class skills.
Benefit: You gain Track as a bonus feat, and Survival becomes a monk class skill for you.

MARTIAL MONK
Take this class variant when taking your first level of monk. A martial monk attacks using the full base attack progression, but does not gain the Empty Strike class feature at level 3. A martial monk gains 6+int skill points per level rather than 8+Int.


Commentary:
For players who want a monk with a full base attack bonus, here it is. This variant gains the ability to make more attacks, at a small cost in accuracy, damage, and skill points.

SCHOOL OF THE NIMBLE HAND
Level: 1st
Replaces: If you select this class feature, you do not gain Research as a bonus feat at 1st level, nor do you gain Decipher Script or Forgery as class skills.
Benefit: You gain trapfinding as a rogue, and Disable Device and Open Locks become monk class skills for you.

SENSE THE VOID
At 4th level, you may choose to trade in your slow fall ability. You gain blindsense 20 ft. instead. At every even-numbered level thereafter, the range of your blindsense increases by 10 ft. At level 12, you also gain blindsight at half the range of your blindsense.


Commentary:
StV is better than Slow Fall. However, many players perceive Slow Fall as an iconic monk class ability and don't want to lose it, even if it makes their character less optimal, so I provided StV as an ACF rather than making a replacement. Also, Dancing with the Elements opens up opportunities to leap from great heights more frequently, making Slow Fall more valuable and rendering this ACF more of an even trade.

STUDENT OF CHAOS
Prerequisites: About to take their first level of Monk, chaotic alignment.
Benefit: May treat all references to Lawful in the Monk class as instead reading Chaotic. In addition, they may take the feat Axiomatic Strike as Anarchic strike, dealing their bonus damage to lawful creatures or those with DR/chaotic.

jiriku
2010-04-23, 01:01 AM
Reserved for build stubs and demonstrations of concept. To be filled in tomorrow PM most likely.

Comparison of ranger 6 w/revised monk 6 (low optimization)
32 PB disregarding race or level-based feats (but donating weapon finesse to the ranger)

Monk Str 10, Dex 16, Con 12, Int 10, Wis 18, Cha 9
Feats improved grapple, combat reflexes, improved trip
assuming periapt of wisdom +2
hp 36, AC 19, Fort +6, Ref +8, Will +10
skill points 99
attack routine w/flurry +11/+11, dmg 1d8+6
two attacks available with full attack, standard attack, or AoO
trip check +12, grapple check +16

Ranger Str 12, Dex 18, Con 14, Int 10, Wis 14, Cha 9
assuming +1 longsword, +1 shortsword, +1 chain shirt
feats TWF, ITWF
hp 42, AC 19, Fort +7, Ref +9, Will +4
skill points 54
full attack +9/+9/+4/+4, dmg 1d8+2 or 1d6+1
standard attack or AoO: +11, dmg 1d8+2
trip check +4, grapple check +7

Analysis: Ranger has an advantage in durability and slightly better defenses across the board. Monk has 4 more skills at maximum ranks. Monk is slightly more accurate and much more deadly while on the move, ranger has a better full attack. The monk is also considerably more capable than the ranger at tripping and grappling, but this example doesn't bring into play the ranger's spells or animal companion. I think these two are in approximately the same ballpark, which was the intent.

Lix Lorn
2010-04-23, 03:56 AM
Looks cool to me, but I don't know what I'm talking about.
One thing, I assume that you need to be lawful, but the requirements aren't up there.

Zeta Kai
2010-04-23, 05:18 AM
Skill Points at 1st Level: (10 + Int modifier) x 4
Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 10 + Int modifier.

How many skill points does a rogue have in your house rules? 12? 14? Because 10 for the monk is really excessive. That's stepping on the rogue's toes, hard. I'd go with the bard's "skill-monkey-lite" 6SP/level. Which in your house rules would work out to 8SP/level. 10 is just insane.

Also, what? No full BAB? Why can't the monk get a break on this? It would allow them to actually do their job of wading into melee, without all the complication of Flurry of Misses.

Lord Loss
2010-04-23, 05:33 AM
I likey. However, the skillpoints seem a bit (and by a bit, i mean WAAAAAAY) excessive. Unless of course the rest of the classes get more skillz.

I really like empty strike, for some reason. As a martial artist, I really do enjoy this class.

paddyfool
2010-04-23, 05:46 AM
I agree with Zeta - better to go for 8 skill points/level (same as Ranger by your rules... unless they count as a "caster") and full BAB.

Incidentally, you may want to fix some of the monk weapons. I have a house rule that you can sacrifice off-hand strikes while dual-wielding to attempt a disarm or a sunder as if using a two-handed weapon (making the Sai and the Nunchaku have a point to their existence). You may want to make this a two-point skill trick, but it certainly isn't worth a feat.

Roderick_BR
2010-04-23, 07:16 AM
Lets see.
More skill points and class skills. That's good (I fully agree that non-casters should have more skill points, I'm actually making a similar rule in my games, giving extra skills to fighters and monks)
Full BAB. A classic fix. I think a skirmisher should benefit from it as much as a frontliner.
Better AC. In the ends it gets 1 better point than core. So so.
Flurry now has normal flurry, and "partial flurry" that is making your normal full attack as a standard action. I like, simple, and allows monks to attack multiple times when moving, leaving the "full" flurry as full round actions.
Unarmed damage. Hmm. Ends up a bit stronger, yes. I don't know if the increase of dice damage makes it too strong or not.
Bonus feats. Good too, allow better customization. Another rule I'm thinking about using too, giving more feats for non-casters.
Skillmonkey abilities. Not sure about it either. Kinda takes away from the rogue, but seeing as so many classes have it these days, it's not really an issue, just another option for skill monkeys.
Wis and Dex to attack rolls/damage. Made into class features instead of feats. Very good. I could also suggest making it into feats, and have them be bonus monk feats, so you can choose them or pick something else, if you do decide for a high Str monk.
Ki strike. It was increased to be stronger than just "counts as a magic weapon" to actually BE magic weapons. Like having permanent magic weapon/fangs. Considering his role. I wouldn't say it's overpowered.
Wholeness of body. More HP healed with high wis. Good as the Paladin's lay on hands now.
Having Quivering Palm usable by day instead of week is already good. Several times is insanelly good. Considering the difficult to using it, I'd say it's alright. Can it be used in the same target more than once in the same day? I'd say that it should be usable only once in each enemy every day, to avoid people quiverying flurring.
The top abilities that mimic some high level spells. Not sure about the balance, but I think it's flavourful, so I guess it's alright.
DR 20/chaotic seems a bit too much, though. Most DRs don't go past 10/something. You already swapped magic for chaotic, that's good enough
Others abilities being beefed up or usable more than once is a really nice tough.


All in all, I like. Beefs up a monk, and let him do what he should do.

A note on your "ki" or "maneuver" comments. I think they'd work nice with monks, I mean, "Ki strike", "Flurry of Blows", "Stunning Fist", and "Quivering Palm" all does sound like maneuver or ki powers to me. The classes that offer new ones just have better mechanics than the core monk. Your version offers a stronger and more usable class, but offers not many more options than the core monk. It is, as people say, give him bigger number (that we know the monk needs), but more options in combat would be nice.

jiriku
2010-04-27, 10:30 PM
I likey. However, the skillpoints seem a bit (and by a bit, i mean WAAAAAAY) excessive. Unless of course the rest of the classes get more skillz.

I really like empty strike, for some reason. As a martial artist, I really do enjoy this class.

Yes they do. All non-casters get two more in my setting. However, since it's apparently tl;dr, I've subtracted the extra skill points for ease of critiquing.

ForzaFiori
2010-04-28, 12:38 AM
I REALLY like this. This is the first monk fix I've seen that I've actually thought was an actual mystic martial artist type character, and wasn't sucky.

Now I just need to find all the different books I'd need to play one...

Sorry about the, but I'm not that good at it. I don't see some of the points behind the agreed upon bad or broken things... However, if I ever get a chance to play this guy, I will be sure to let you know how it went.

Deca
2010-04-28, 02:39 AM
This is very, VERY nice. I like it. A lot. I'd definately play this guy.

ForzaFiori
2010-04-28, 09:50 AM
What book is Earth's Embrace from?

Wrathofautumn
2010-05-28, 12:07 AM
Question concerning Empty Strike. I'm making a mojavo monk using this build, but I'm confused. I've got Weapon Finesse put on him to use dexterity in place of strength modifiers to determine his attack for monk skills. With empty strike and Dexterity as my higher tween str and dex, do I simply add the dex mod again?

Dilb
2010-05-28, 08:29 PM
Hmm, a couple of things stand out:

Empty strike: If a monk has high DEX, does he get DEX + WIS to hit, and to damage, and to combat manoeuvres? If so, STR is reduced to just providing carrying capacity, and every monk will take high DEX for the AC bonus. If not, that should be rewritten.

Sense the Void: This is such an obvious choice there's no reason to not ever take it. In addition to better senses, blindsight let's you ignore concealment penalties, like for attacking invisible things.

IMPROVED KI DEFENSE/IMPROVED KI OFFENCE: Awesome enough that every monk will want them. The 'take at level 10 even without requirements' bit really only means they can take it without autohypnosis, as they have everything else at level 9. Since they will almost certainly take both feats though, it doesn't really help as they need to put skill in autohypnosis anyway. Either let monks take them as bonus feats at level 10 or later, or get rid of the autohypnosis requirements, or get rid of the line about the special exemption at only level 10 (it's just clutter otherwise).

General commentary: The flurry for extra attacks on a standard action is nice, and the increase in damage means a monk is a bit stronger than a fighter without shock trooper shenanigans. The monk still has issues with flying things: this could be alleviated by making abundant step a move action rather than a standard action. DR/20 is a lot, so unless you're fighting a lot of Titans and Balors (which the core monk was already perfectly decent at fighting), the monk 20 will be pretty much immune to physical attacks. Backing it down to 10 would be reasonable.

ForzaFiori
2010-05-28, 08:39 PM
Hmm, a couple of things stand out:

Empty strike: If a monk has high DEX, does he get DEX + WIS to hit, and to damage, and to combat manoeuvres? If so, STR is reduced to just providing carrying capacity, and every monk will take high DEX for the AC bonus. If not, that should be rewritten.

Sense the Void: This is such an obvious choice there's no reason to not ever take it. In addition to better senses, blindsight let's you ignore concealment penalties, like for attacking invisible things.

IMPROVED KI DEFENSE/IMPROVED KI OFFENCE: Awesome enough that every monk will want them. The 'take at level 10 even without requirements' bit really only means they can take it without autohypnosis, as they have everything else at level 9. Since they will almost certainly take both feats though, it doesn't really help as they need to put skill in autohypnosis anyway. Either let monks take them as bonus feats at level 10 or later, or get rid of the autohypnosis requirements, or get rid of the line about the special exemption at only level 10 (it's just clutter otherwise).

General commentary: The flurry for extra attacks on a standard action is nice, and the increase in damage means a monk is a bit stronger than a fighter without shock trooper shenanigans. The monk still has issues with flying things: this could be alleviated by making abundant step a move action rather than a standard action. DR/20 is a lot, so unless you're fighting a lot of Titans and Balors (which the core monk was already perfectly decent at fighting), the monk 20 will be pretty much immune to physical attacks. Backing it down to 10 would be reasonable.

DR 20 will not be negating the majority of damage at level twenty. No where near. By then, fireballs are flinging around for like 15d6 damage, and swords are +10 with 30, 40 strength behind them. DR 20 is nothing at that level.

Dilb
2010-05-28, 11:44 PM
First, DR doesn't apply to fireballs, which are still 10d6. Delayed blast fireballs are up to 15d6 sure, but they still allow evasion, and it's easier for this monk to pump DEX to the point where he makes that save more often then not: maybe a 29 DC delayed blast fireball, versus the monk's ~23 (at the lowest) save, so he needs a 6 (a 2 for a regular fireball). Plus the monk as a 45% chance of SR being effective against an equal level caster. So he takes no damage at all ~80% of the time from blasting that allows a reflex save. Since this monk has a touch AC probably in the 40s (10 + 12 WIS + 6 from the levels + 6 DEX + 5 ring = 39), touch attacks aren't too reliable either, necessitating a use of true strike first.

Second, typical damage at level 20 is ~40 for an attack that's part of a full attack. A CR 20 dragon is gargantuan, and has a 4d6 + STR bite attack, doing about 27 damage on average. The tarrasque only does 4d8 + 27 damage, average 45, with a bite attack. Even if they power attack for an extra 20 damage, DR/20 is still a third of that, and the secondary attacks are worthless (they get half STR, and I don't know if they get anything from PA).

A non-shock-trooper fighter has a +5 great sword, + 3d6 energy damage, + 18 STR damage (that's from 34 STR), + 2 from weapon specialization, giving 5d6 + 25, averaging 42.5 damage per hit. He can't power attack for that much because even a brilliant energy weapon will miss his ~40 AC, as none of his AC comes from armour. DR/20 cuts the damage in half.

This monk will absolutely trounce anything that can't get through his DR, which is hard enough as DR/20 chaotic, let alone DR/20 chaotic and epic.

Doc Roc
2010-05-29, 12:30 AM
Is there a reason that this monk can't fly?

ForzaFiori
2010-05-29, 10:10 AM
First, DR doesn't apply to fireballs, which are still 10d6. Delayed blast fireballs are up to 15d6 sure, but they still allow evasion, and it's easier for this monk to pump DEX to the point where he makes that save more often then not: maybe a 29 DC delayed blast fireball, versus the monk's ~23 (at the lowest) save, so he needs a 6 (a 2 for a regular fireball). Plus the monk as a 45% chance of SR being effective against an equal level caster. So he takes no damage at all ~80% of the time from blasting that allows a reflex save. Since this monk has a touch AC probably in the 40s (10 + 12 WIS + 6 from the levels + 6 DEX + 5 ring = 39), touch attacks aren't too reliable either, necessitating a use of true strike first.

Second, typical damage at level 20 is ~40 for an attack that's part of a full attack. A CR 20 dragon is gargantuan, and has a 4d6 + STR bite attack, doing about 27 damage on average. The tarrasque only does 4d8 + 27 damage, average 45, with a bite attack. Even if they power attack for an extra 20 damage, DR/20 is still a third of that, and the secondary attacks are worthless (they get half STR, and I don't know if they get anything from PA).

A non-shock-trooper fighter has a +5 great sword, + 3d6 energy damage, + 18 STR damage (that's from 34 STR), + 2 from weapon specialization, giving 5d6 + 25, averaging 42.5 damage per hit. He can't power attack for that much because even a brilliant energy weapon will miss his ~40 AC, as none of his AC comes from armour. DR/20 cuts the damage in half.

This monk will absolutely trounce anything that can't get through his DR, which is hard enough as DR/20 chaotic, let alone DR/20 chaotic and epic.

All you've proven here is that this new monk is stronger than: An unoptimized member of the WEAKEST CLASS, and is able to beat some of the WEAKEST spells out there.

When did we start judging balance based on the Fighter and Evoker?

Dilb
2010-05-29, 12:17 PM
All you've proven here is that this new monk is stronger than: An unoptimized member of the WEAKEST CLASS, and is able to beat some of the WEAKEST spells out there.

When did we start judging balance based on the Fighter and Evoker?

You're the one who brought up fireballs and +10 swords. I know perfectly well this monk isn't going to win against batman. Similarly, a fighter with a +50 sword isn't going to win against batman either, but that doesn't mean we should give him that sword to try and even things up.

With DR/20 chaotic and epic, I'm pretty confident this monk can solo a tarrasque with no real danger to himself (which actually only has +17 damage on it's bite, not +27), which strikes me as just a bit overpowered in the "hitting stuff" department. jiriku said he's aiming for a tier 4, and as I'm pretty sure with DR/20 (that they can't get through, because they can't afford epic weapons) this can beat up most tier 4 classes easily. On top of that, he gets diplomacy and a bunch of other useful skills, and a few dozen ways per day to escape traps/grapples/forcecages.

PairO'Dice Lost
2010-05-29, 02:08 PM
With DR/20 chaotic and epic, I'm pretty confident this monk can solo a tarrasque with no real danger to himself (which actually only has +17 damage on it's bite, not +27), which strikes me as just a bit overpowered in the "hitting stuff" department. jiriku said he's aiming for a tier 4, and as I'm pretty sure with DR/20 (that they can't get through, because they can't afford epic weapons) this can beat up most tier 4 classes easily. On top of that, he gets diplomacy and a bunch of other useful skills, and a few dozen ways per day to escape traps/grapples/forcecages.

He doesn't have the wish to kill the tarrasque, though, and if "soloing the tarrasque" is "bringing it way down into the negatives without actually killing it" then any low-level character with flight and a ranged weapon qualifies as well.

Dilb
2010-05-29, 02:58 PM
He doesn't have the wish to kill the tarrasque, though, and if "soloing the tarrasque" is "bringing it way down into the negatives without actually killing it" then any low-level character with flight and a ranged weapon qualifies as well.

You have a low level character that can hit AC 35, beat DR/15 epic, and fast healing 40, and do 850 damage? And really, wish is hardly the important part when the monk just out-punched godzilla. Is it that hard to imagine he has a ring of three wishes (as I certainly didn't claim the monk was naked, and he has WBL to spare thanks to the fact that he doesn't need to purchase weapons or armour equivalents), or someone had a scroll and donated it to the "I don't want to be eaten by a tarrasque" fund where an NPC wizard cast it, or that obstacles deliberately designed for 3 of 11 classes aren't forced upon solo characters? This is the homebrew forum, not theoretical optimization.

This monk can also take on balors, pit fiends, gargantuan dragons, and titans, and will win pretty much anytime he doesn't roll a 1 on a save or die after failing a SR check, assuming that "they fly/teleport away" isn't counted as a loss for the monk. I really don't think there's anything controversial about saying that with DR/20 this monk is kinda strong, compared to say:
CR 20
Tier 4 classes at level 20
This monk at level 19

PairO'Dice Lost
2010-05-29, 03:17 PM
You have a low level character that can hit AC 35, beat DR/15 epic, and fast healing 40, and do 850 damage? And really, wish is hardly the important part when the monk just out-punched godzilla. Is it that hard to imagine he has a ring of three wishes (as I certainly didn't claim the monk was naked, and he has WBL to spare thanks to the fact that he doesn't need to purchase weapons or armour equivalents), or someone had a scroll and donated it to the "I don't want to be eaten by a tarrasque" fund where an NPC wizard cast it, or that obstacles deliberately designed for 3 of 11 classes aren't forced upon solo characters? This is the homebrew forum, not theoretical optimization.

It's not impossible with practical optimization at the 6-8 level range, before even getting into TO territory; the fact that it is in fact possible means "It can solo the tarrasque!!" isn't a good measure of power or lack thereof. 20th-level characters are nigh-unto gods; the problem isn't with the PC's power level, it's that a puzzle monster with no ranged attacks, no magic, and no countermeasures aside from bouncing rays isn't anywhere near CR 20.


This monk can also take on balors, pit fiends, gargantuan dragons, and titans, and will win pretty much anytime he doesn't roll a 1 on a save or die after failing a SR check, assuming that "they fly/teleport away" isn't counted as a loss for the monk. I really don't think there's anything controversial about saying that with DR/20 this monk is kinda strong, compared to say:
CR 20
Tier 4 classes at level 20
This monk at level 19

DR 20 is not nearly as amazing as you seem to think. Heck, a vanilla rogue 20 with the TWF tree and appropriate WBL is getting at minimum 16 damage with sneak attacks, and after other typical feats and items should be hitting a minimum of 25 or 30 damage per attack for 6-7 attacks--and rogues aren't even primary martial damage-dealers.

Dilb
2010-05-29, 04:55 PM
It's not impossible with practical optimization at the 6-8 level range, before even getting into TO territory; the fact that it is in fact possible means "It can solo the tarrasque!!" isn't a good measure of power or lack thereof. 20th-level characters are nigh-unto gods; the problem isn't with the PC's power level, it's that a puzzle monster with no ranged attacks, no magic, and no countermeasures aside from bouncing rays isn't anywhere near CR 20.

Could you tell me what that build is? Last I saw it takes more like a cleric 13, or several dozen of archers. And again, the monk is standing there trading blows, not flying safely out of reach: if you feel in a direct brawl, trading attacks back and forth, the tarrasque is underpowered for CR 20, then you have really different expectations of what is appropriate for martial characters.


DR 20 is not nearly as amazing as you seem to think. Heck, a vanilla rogue 20 with the TWF tree and appropriate WBL is getting at minimum 16 damage with sneak attacks, and after other typical feats and items should be hitting a minimum of 25 or 30 damage per attack for 6-7 attacks--and rogues aren't even primary martial damage-dealers.

Please, run some math for me. Calculate how much damage that rouge does, assuming he gets sneak attacks in this 1 on 1 battle, on average, both with and without that DR/20, recalling that the monk has 41 AC. Calculate how much damage the monk does.
Here, my numbers are:
Rogue: ~14d6 + 8 damage, at +33/+28/+23 to hit, twice. Average damage against 41 AC, about 150 per round. With 20 subtracted from each hit, that drops to 100 per round.
Monk: 6d6 + 24 damage, at +39/+39/+39/+34/+29. Average damage against 41 AC (which is harder for the rogue to get, as he doesn't have DEX and WIS to AC, and doesn't get +6 enhancement on his armour), 190 per round.
Bear in mind that even if the monk is flatfooted, he keeps his AC from WIS and class levels, and to feint you need to beat a sense motive + BAB check, which even untrained is at +27 for the monk.
DR/20 takes it from "the rogue has a chance in a straight fight, especially if he wins initiative" to "the rogue almost certainly loses".

PairO'Dice Lost
2010-05-29, 05:31 PM
Could you tell me what that build is? Last I saw it takes more like a cleric 13, or several dozen of archers.

Obviously using a weapon instead of spells is going to make it harder, but a warblade/bloodstorm blade with Stone Dragon maneuvers can do it, as can a ranger with hunter's mercy or other auto-crit abilities, a swift hunter build with Power Shot or another Power-Attack-with-ranged-weapons analog, or similar.


And again, the monk is standing there trading blows, not flying safely out of reach: if you feel in a direct brawl, trading attacks back and forth, the tarrasque is underpowered for CR 20, then you have really different expectations of what is appropriate for martial characters.

1) Sitting there trading punches with a wight or other energy-draining undead is also a bad idea, but it doesn't raise their CR, it means you're going about it wrong. The fact that the tarrasque can be soloed by vastly lower-level PCs, even at level 15 or so, means it's over-CRed, regardless of whether a solo monk flurrying it to death has trouble with it.

2) I'm not talking about martial characters vs. the tarrasque, I'm talking about any character. If a monster can't deal with flight, or miss chances, or ranged attacks, or similarly ubiquitous tactics, it really doesn't deserve a CR above 10 or so, regardless of how annoying it is to finally kill permanently, regardless of its HD.


Please, run some math for me. Calculate how much damage that rouge does, assuming he gets sneak attacks in this 1 on 1 battle, on average, both with and without that DR/20, recalling that the monk has 41 AC. Calculate how much damage the monk does.
Here, my numbers are:
Rogue: ~14d6 + 8 damage, at +33/+28/+23 to hit, twice. Average damage against 41 AC, about 150 per round. With 20 subtracted from each hit, that drops to 100 per round.
Monk: 6d6 + 24 damage, at +39/+39/+39/+34/+29. Average damage against 41 AC (which is harder for the rogue to get, as he doesn't have DEX and WIS to AC, and doesn't get +6 enhancement on his armour), 190 per round.
Bear in mind that even if the monk is flatfooted, he keeps his AC from WIS and class levels, and to feint you need to beat a sense motive + BAB check, which even untrained is at +27 for the monk.
DR/20 takes it from "the rogue has a chance in a straight fight, especially if he wins initiative" to "the rogue almost certainly loses".

So what you're saying is that a rogue, a non-primary combatant who relies on situational damage and multiple attacks (which are always weak vs. DR) doesn't beat a front-line, combat-focused character with DR? Shocking. Did I ever say I expected the rogue to own the monk? No, because like archers, TWFers, and other multi-attackers the rogue hates DR; I simply said he's not useless against the monk (just comparing minimum damage with DR), and given their HP, he can even kill the monk if he gets a surprise round and wins initiative, just like the monk can do if it does the same.

Granted, this monk overshoots the Tier 4 set in the OP, but that's not a bad thing; the rogue sits on the fence between tiers 3 and 4 depending on what it's built for, so a tier 3 monk should be a cut above the rogue in the combat department. I only mentioned a rogue to show that he won't auto-lose to the monk; compare it to another Tier 3 frontliner and it'll come out roughly comparable.

Dilb
2010-05-29, 08:18 PM
Do you have any links to builds which actually do so? I don't see how, for example, a spell allowing 1 critical hit a round with a bow is going to do more than 70 damage at very low levels.

But I really don't care if there are smarter ways of fighting the tarrasque. The point is the monk can fight it in accordance with the Marquess of Queensberry rules and has a good chance of coming out on top. It's a huge step up in power compared to a monk 19. Even if there are non-hitting ways of beating the monk, that's no reason to throw out balance for the hitting parts.

If you really must, imagine my super-duper homebrew creature: flying tarrasque. It flies, moves really really fast (10 000 feet per round, perfect manoeuvrability), and it can see you (+ a billion to spot, and blindsight, and it sees and hits things on the ethereal plane, and it can follow you through teleports and plane shifts and everything else, regardless of the time elapsed if it's busy), and it specifically wants to kill you and your party in particular. It's attacks and defences are exactly as strong as normal tarrasque. Does it seem reasonable that the monk can out-box it?

If you feel DR/20 is appropriate then a monk 19 is underpowered. I feel DR/20 is too much, and think monk 20 is overpowered. Either way, suddenly getting DR/20 is an anomalous jump.

PairO'Dice Lost
2010-05-29, 09:25 PM
Do you have any links to builds which actually do so? I don't see how, for example, a spell allowing 1 critical hit a round with a bow is going to do more than 70 damage at very low levels.

I can't find any links at the moment, but here's a build off the top of my head: a generic fighter 2/rogue 6 (either a psionic race or human with Wild Talent) with +4 Str and Dex mods from items or race or whatever, with the PBS, Psionic Shot, Fell Shot, Psionic Meditation, and Craven feats, and with a +2 shocking mighty composite (+4) longbow, one or more scrolls of greater invisibility, and a wand of hunter's mercy deals (1d8+4d6+12)x3 damage per round, which works out to an average of 76 damage after DR (min 36, max 117) or 36 after DR + regen (min 0, max 77). With Fell Shot he's targeting the tarrasque's 5 touch AC, so there's no danger of him missing any time soon. Swift for the wand, move to regain focus, standard to fire, repeat.

All he has to do is keep plinking away and he'll have the tarrasque dead in an average of just over 2.5 minutes. That's without using more than a fraction of WBL, using common archery and rogue feats, and without undue optimization. If he's a level higher, he can pick up Telling Blow and no longer need the greater invisibility scrolls; if he wants to spend more WBL, he can add more damage enchantments/items to kill Big T faster. If I were to actually open my books and go through the good items and rogue feats to really optimize this, I'm sure I could kick this up a notch, and if I were to remove the rogue restriction and bring bloodstorm blade into this, it gets an order of magnitude easier.

Satisfied?


But I really don't care if there are smarter ways of fighting the tarrasque. The point is the monk can fight it in accordance with the Marquess of Queensberry rules and has a good chance of coming out on top. It's a huge step up in power compared to a monk 19. Even if there are non-hitting ways of beating the monk, that's no reason to throw out balance for the hitting parts.

Why should fisticuffs be out of the question just because it's the tarrasque? Level 1 characters can go toe-to-toe with goblins; level 7 characters (think Hercules) can go toe-to-toe with hydrae; where's the magical cutoff where slugging it out according to Queensberry rules is suddenly not a good thing?


If you really must, imagine my super-duper homebrew creature: flying tarrasque. It flies, moves really really fast (10 000 feet per round, perfect manoeuvrability), and it can see you (+ a billion to spot, and blindsight, and it sees and hits things on the ethereal plane, and it can follow you through teleports and plane shifts and everything else, regardless of the time elapsed if it's busy), and it specifically wants to kill you and your party in particular. It's attacks and defences are exactly as strong as normal tarrasque. Does it seem reasonable that the monk can out-box it?

If you're giving it godlike powers, it doesn't make sense for anything to defeat it. :smallwink: At that point it's no longer a huge brute but rather an unstoppable hunter-killer machine, so all bets are off as to what seems "reasonable."


If you feel DR/20 is appropriate then a monk 19 is underpowered. I feel DR/20 is too much, and think monk 20 is overpowered. Either way, suddenly getting DR/20 is an anomalous jump.

I don't think suddenly giving DR with no precedent is necessarily a good capstone, and would support DR = level at some point (13th or thereabouts) so it caps at 20 but gets there gradually. I was only arguing against the notion that DR 20 is too good at that level; where it fits in with the rest of the monk is still up for debate.

Dilb
2010-05-29, 11:14 PM
Huh, swift action spell wands are errataed to swift actions. That's stupid. Thanks though. Although sneak attack damage isn't multiplied by crits.


Why should fisticuffs be out of the question just because it's the tarrasque? Level 1 characters can go toe-to-toe with goblins; level 7 characters (think Hercules) can go toe-to-toe with hydrae; where's the magical cutoff where slugging it out according to Queensberry rules is suddenly not a good thing?

Of course fisticuffs are the option. My point is that you shouldn't be able to out-fisticuff an equal CR challenge with almost no risk. Thanks the the DR, the tarrasque is not a threat in combat to the monk. The tarrasque does ~30 damage a round, the monk does over 200 to the tarrasque. Result: dead tarrasque, slightly inconvenienced monk.


If you're giving it godlike powers, it doesn't make sense for anything to defeat it. :smallwink: At that point it's no longer a huge brute but rather an unstoppable hunter-killer machine, so all bets are off as to what seems "reasonable."

Again, my point is this monk can easily defeat it. A 4 man party, even 4 core fighters can defeat it working together, but this single monk can take it on at even less risk to himself.


I don't think suddenly giving DR with no precedent is necessarily a good capstone, and would support DR = level at some point (13th or thereabouts) so it caps at 20 but gets there gradually. I was only arguing against the notion that DR 20 is too good at that level; where it fits in with the rest of the monk is still up for debate.

Sure, that would make more sense, yeah.

PairO'Dice Lost
2010-05-29, 11:35 PM
Huh, swift action spell wands are errataed to swift actions. That's stupid. Thanks though. Although sneak attack damage isn't multiplied by crits.

Whoops; haven't made that mistake in a while. Throw in Power Shot and add collision, corrosive, and frost to the arrows, then, and you're back to the same average damage; either way, you can get up to 70 damage easily enough, and again the rogue is the worst way to do it.


Of course fisticuffs are the option. My point is that you shouldn't be able to out-fisticuff an equal CR challenge with almost no risk. Thanks the the DR, the tarrasque is not a threat in combat to the monk. The tarrasque does ~30 damage a round, the monk does over 200 to the tarrasque. Result: dead tarrasque, slightly inconvenienced monk.

Why not? A barbarian full-attacking with a greataxe can do the same thing, with the higher HD and Con most likely soaking up the damage the DR would cover and with his higher damage ending combat sooner. Above 6th level, you get most of your damage by sitting in one place and full-attacking, unless you're a charge build in which case you move around to charge. Trading blows in melee is inevitably going to happen with any and every effective melee character.


Again, my point is this monk can easily defeat it. A 4 man party, even 4 core fighters can defeat it working together, but this single monk can take it on at even less risk to himself.

As shown above, a single character of almost any Tier 4 or higher class can solo it with zero risk if built right. "Can class X defeat monster Y by itself?" isn't a good question; you need to test it against a wide variety of challenges and compare its abilities to comparable monsters and classes.

jiriku
2010-06-21, 05:31 PM
I command thee, thread, to rise again, and walk the earth once more!

(This thread necromancy carries the moderator seal of approval. No undead were harmed in the making of this post.)


I will first respond to previous posters, in case any are still drifting about this forum.

ForzaFiori: Earth's Embrace is from Complete Warrior. I have a homebrew version of it which I intended to include in the feats post and I now see that I forgot to do so. I'll add that tonight when I get home from work.



Wrathofautumn: Weapon Finesse is not intended to stack in any useful way with Empty Strike. Empty Strike is intended to be Weapon Finesse++. I'd recommend retraining Weapon Finesse to another feat.



Dilb: You are correct. Strength can easily be used as a dump stat for the revised monk, although I worded Empty Strike in such a way that a character who wants a big, burly, muscular monk can play one if he wants too. It's slightly less optimal, but since this is a base class I want to leave all the doors open.

Your next observation is also correct: Sense the Void is much better than Slow Fall. However, I didn't want to remove Slow Fall, since it's an iconic monk ability in the minds of many players. Thus, I added StV as an ACF. I expect that most optimizers will trade away Slow Fall for an ACF, either StV or something else.

I see that I made an error in setting the requirements for Improved Ki Defense and Improved Ki Strike. There requirements are intended to force the monk to choose either an offensive or defensive slant with his abilities. A monk can't have both without committing extra resources (the skill points put into Autohypnosis). Also, because of the Autohypnosis requirement, it's difficult for someone who dips monk to acquire these feats without investing an even larger number of skill points (they're paying cross class or burning a feat on Able Learner). I've increased the requirement from 12 points to 15; this means that acquiring one of the feats via the monk bonus feat progression is now an early access method.

I'm persuaded by your concerns about the damage reduction. I'll reduce it to DR 15/chaotic, increasing to DR 20/chaotic and epic with the Improved Ki Defense feat.


Doc Roc: I dunno why, but flying monks just don't sit well with me. It seems goofy somehow. More than half of the Tier 3 classes don't have ready access to flight, but now that I think of it, the non-flyers all have something useful to do when facing flying opponents. After some considering, I see the design hole you're pointing out, though. Maybe there's room for compromise? How about ridiculously large bonuses to Balance, Jump, and Tumble, enabling the monk to hit epic skill DCs in the mid-teens (run up a wall, balance on a blade, dash across a lake, and other wuxia-style actions), and some improvement in ranged attacks that make the various monk thrown weapons more viable? Can you offer any suggestions in this vein?

UserClone
2010-06-22, 12:58 AM
Actually, if they both have DR/Epic, correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't that mean that they both also punch through DR/Epic?

Lix Lorn
2010-06-22, 09:27 AM
How about ridiculously large bonuses to Balance, Jump, and Tumble, enabling the monk to hit epic skill DCs in the mid-teens (run up a wall, balance on a blade, dash across a lake, and other wuxia-style actions)
I support this.

jiriku
2010-06-22, 10:55 AM
OK, I've added Dance with the Elements at level 3. This gives the monk a competence bonus to Balance, Jump, and Climb Tumble, equal to his bonus move speed.

Jump:

By level 6, the monk can leap 10 ft up, to strike targets 20 ft above him. This is enough for most high-ceiling rooms and indoor encounter areas.
By level 18, the monk can leap 30 ft up. With likely reach, he can tag someone 60 ft above, meaning casters using close-range spells are not safe.

Balance:

By level 6, we're looking at balancing on thin branches and other precrious places.
By level 18, the monk can run across dash across the water, stand on surfaces that technically cannot support his weight, even balance on a cloud.

Tumble:

At level 6, not so impressive, but the monk is a proficient tumbler.
At level 18, the monk can take 10-ft steps, use tumble to run right up a wall, kip up without devoting a feat to it, even ignore falling damage (which renders slow fall pointless, but as Delb has pointed out, that's probably getting replaced with an ACF anyhow).

This is going to support several design goals:

The monk can use Tumble and Balance to exploit environmental features to gain altitude, then use Jump to cover additional distance in order to strike at flyers. Battle Jump becomes a more attractive feat for him. I could see Hood (http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75882/19872838/Little_Red_Raiding_Hood:_A_Tale_of_38;_Guide_to_th e_3.5_Dragoon)builds that might use this monk. His Slow Fall feature and improved Tumbling are now more useful, since leaping from ridiculous heights becomes a more viable combat tactic and the monk needs the ability to land without splatting.
The monk is even less reliant on gear. The competence bonuses he's getting are better than (and won't stack with) any level-appropriate skill-boosting items he might find, so he's no longer interested in skill-boosters, at least for those three skills.


I still need something to improve the monk's ranged potential.

Current capabilities:
He can already flurry with shurikens as a standard action.
He's Dex-reliant so he'll be fairly accurate.
He gets bonus damage from both Dex and Wis on those shuriken.
Although they're disposable, shuriken can be enchanted or made from special materials cheaply, since they count as ammunition.
If using the Crash Like a Wave, Bend Like a Reed ACF, he's also adding up to 5d6 skirmish damage to his flurried shuriken (or up to 7d6 if he takes the Improved Skirmish feat).
Range is quite limited though, even if he takes Far Shot.


Anyone have any suggestions? Perhaps I could extend the Ki Strike feature and Improved Ki Strike feat to apply to special monk weapons. What impact do you think that would have?

Lix Lorn
2010-06-22, 11:15 AM
I like those skill bonii.
How about some kind of Ki Shot allowing him to launch shuriken a longlonglong way?

paddyfool
2010-06-22, 11:29 AM
OK, I've added Dance with the Elements at level 3. This gives the monk a competence bonus to Balance, Jump, and Climb equal to his bonus move speed.

Jump:

By level 6, the monk can leap 10 ft up, to strike targets 20 ft above him. This is enough for most high-ceiling rooms and indoor encounter areas.
By level 18, the monk can leap 30 ft up. With likely reach, he can tag someone 60 ft above, meaning casters using close-range spells are not safe.

Balance:

By level 6, we're looking at balancing on thin branches and other precrious places.
By level 18, the monk can run across dash across the water, stand on surfaces that technically cannot support his weight, even balance on a cloud.

Tumble:

At level 6, not so impressive, but the monk is a proficient tumbler.
At level 18, the monk can take 10-ft steps, use tumble to run right up a wall, kip up without devoting a feat to it, even ignore falling damage (which renders slow fall pointless, but as Delb has pointed out, that's probably getting replaced with an ACF anyhow).

This is going to support several design goals:

The monk can use Tumble and Balance to exploit environmental features to gain altitude, then use Jump to cover additional distance in order to strike at flyers. Battle Jump becomes a more attractive feat for him. I could see Hood (http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75882/19872838/Little_Red_Raiding_Hood:_A_Tale_of_38;_Guide_to_th e_3.5_Dragoon)builds that might use this monk. His Slow Fall feature and improved Tumbling are now more useful, since leaping from ridiculously heights is now a more viable combat tactic and the monk needs the ability to land without splatting.
The monk is even less reliant on gear, as the competence bonuses he's getting are better than (and won't stack with) any level-appropriate skill-boosting items he might find, so he's no longer interested in skill-boosters, at least for those three skills.


Woah. +60? If you also max out the skill points (although the net benefit of this might be rather less than investing in other skills you don't get this bonus in), that's a total of +81 at 18, before you get into stat, racial, or item-based bonuses. Going up alongside bonus move speed does seem very appropriate, however - how about just half this as a bonus? Also, don't you mean "Balance, Jump and Climb Tumble" (here and on p1)?


I still need something to improve the monk's ranged potential.

Current capabilities:
He can already flurry with shurikens as a standard action.
He's Dex-reliant so he'll be fairly accurate.
He gets bonus damage from both Dex and Wis on those shuriken.
Although they're disposable, shuriken can be enchanted or made from special materials cheaply, since they count as ammunition.
If using the Crash Like a Wave, Bend Like a Reed ACF, he's also adding up to 5d6 skirmish damage to his flurried shuriken (or up to 7d6 if he takes the Improved Skirmish feat).
Range is quite limited though, even if he takes Far Shot.


Anyone have any suggestions? Perhaps I could extend the Ki Strike feature and Improved Ki Strike feat to apply to special monk weapons. What impact do you think that would have?

I think that would be pretty reasonable.

Some other suggestions:

Dragon mag feat: Ring the golden bell
Wands
Zen archery feat
Alternative monk weapon sets, some including bows (pretty sensible, really).


Also, see this (http://www.dandwiki.com/wiki/Zen_Archer_(3.5e_Class)) variant monk class for some other ideas.

Lix Lorn
2010-06-22, 12:27 PM
[QUOTE=paddyfool;8759268]Woah. +60? If you also max out the skill points (although the net benefit of this might be rather less than investing in other skills you don't get this bonus in), that's a total of +81 at 18, before you get into stat, racial, or item-based bonuses. Going up alongside bonus move speed does seem very appropriate, however - how about just half this It's MEANT to be big enough to pass epic checks.

Plus it doesn't stack with items.

jiriku
2010-06-22, 02:15 PM
I've created a new feat, The Arrow Knows the Way (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=8357956&postcount=2), which provides access to the longbow as a special monk weapon. I've also added some new bonus feat options so the monk can easily qualify for TAKTW at level 1, and can find some in-class support for acquiring necessary archery feats as he advances in level.

Ki Shot is a good idea. Still thinking about how to implement it.

The Zen Archer monk variant has some good gems too. Still considering what to steal.

@ paddyfool: A +60 bonus is extremely large, it's true. But +Win to Balance, Jump, and Tumble is still less potent than a Fly speed with Perfect maneuverability, which many other classes can access well before level 10. My goal is to enable monks to run up trees, dash across lakes, balance on an opponent's sword blade, and do all the cool stuff you see in wuxia movies like Kill Bill, Hero, or Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. Also, as a design goal I want to compensate for the lack of flight by enabling them to use their amazing mobility to get within jumping distance of low-flying enemies, then leap, flurry attack, and land unharmed.

paddyfool
2010-06-23, 07:37 AM
I concede the point. (But you still need to fix the bits where it says "Climb" rather than "Tumble").

Incidentally, I could see a use for a "rare weapon discipline" feat that allows you to gain proficiency with any single one-handed, light, or ranged martial weapon and treat it as a monk weapon.

Merk
2010-06-23, 11:05 AM
This is really good work. I would play this monk.

jiriku
2010-06-23, 11:36 AM
@ Merk: Thank you! :smallsmile:

All mistaken instances of "Climb" should now be corrected to "Tumble." OMG it was hard to find them. I need more sleep.

I have replaced The Arrow Knows the Way with Esoteric Weapons Training, which is essentially the former feat with weapon proficiency thrown in for free, fewer prerequisites, all applicable to a broader class of weapons. It's much better than the Eberron feats involving using an unusual weapon, but honestly those were lousy feats anyway. I am concerned that Esoteric Weapons Training may lead to some genre-clashing situations (e.g. a monk with a cutlass, monk-pirates, yarr!), but I'll leave it to DM discretion to decide when to stomp on any particularly bizarre weapon choices.

I finally have an idea for Lix's suggestion of the Ki Shot, and will implement this soonKi Shot is now added at 5th level. It allows the monk to expend a use of Stunning Fist to ignore range increment penalties and apply Ki Strike to all ranged attacks made with special monk weapons for 1 round.

zugschef
2010-07-08, 04:07 AM
i wouldn't give monks the ability to fly, but have you thought about air walk? that's wuxia style...

UserClone
2010-07-08, 08:35 AM
I disagree with any need for air walk. Epic uses of Balance include running across things that can't support your weight, such as the thin branches at the tops of trees, water, and even clouds. How much more Wuxia does it get?

EDIT: Incidentally, OP, don't forget to remove the limit of max Jump distance by height.

Dusk Eclipse
2010-07-08, 09:16 AM
Love this redux.... might play it next time I can....

jiriku
2010-07-08, 10:40 AM
Air walk is pretty darn similar to fly.

@ UserClone: you're thinking of 3.0 Jump rules. 3.5 removed the height limit on jumping.

Rowanomicon
2010-07-11, 12:59 AM
How about ridiculously large bonuses to Balance, Jump, and Tumble

I'm definitely in favour. Perhaps other Skills as well.

Martial Arts Homebrew is something I am very interested in. Good Job. Perhaps you'd be interested in cooperating on a more extensive Martal Arts Homebrew coverage?

I suggest splitting the AC bonus into Dodge and Deflect Bonuses and having each of them advance to +5.

I'd also suggest something I just suggested for a different Homebrew Class:
Give them the ability to take 10 foot steps instead of just 5 foot steps.

Also perhaps an ability that allows them to add any damage their DR soaked over the last round to their melee or thrown attacks (distributed as they like) to represent redirecting the energy of their opponents attacks.

EDIT: I'd also suggest increasing BAB to Full.

jiriku
2010-07-11, 09:59 AM
The 10' step is already built right in! Per Oriental Adventures, a character can move 10' on a 5' step with a DC 40 Tumble check. While OA is 3.0 material, it received a 3.5 update and the option was not removed in the update. Although it's true that most D&D games don't have much of an oriental flavor to them, I'd say OA is certainly a valid resource for a character who's playing a monk, neh?

At 8th level (when he first acquires an iterative attack), a revised monk with maxed ranks in Tumble and a modest Dexterity of 14 has a +33 Tumble modifier and can make the DC 40 check 70% of the time. By 9th level, his Tumble mod is +44 and he can succeed without rolling even if suffering a -5 penalty for adverse terrain.

Because really, why are you playing a badass monk if not to flip over some dude's head and then ginsu him into bits?


Regarding a collaborative effort, I'm far from the best homebrewer on this forum, and I'm not really looking for a project right now, but send me a PM and pitch it to me and we'll see if it's something I could contribute to.

DracoDei
2010-07-11, 10:07 AM
Just going to randomly pop in here and say that you should at least briefly consider stat boosts... the way I did it with my version was "pick 4 stats when you take your first monk level, at every monk level increase whichever of those is the lowest by 1"... deals with MAD, and goes along with "perfection of mind, body, and spirit". Combined with all your other fixes it might be too much, and you probably already have MAD handled somehow, at least to some extent, but I think that balance is part of the basic idea of a monk, thus this MIGHT be worth undoing some of that.

ForzaFiori
2010-07-11, 10:59 AM
I would just like to say that this monk is awesome enough that I'm playing one in a game right now, and (when the dice decide to stop hating me) it's working great. It still doesn't have the same damage output (which may change with the weapon feat) but I hit so much more (or at least, I would if i didn't always roll 2s) It's an excellent class so far, though I'm only lv 6, and haven't gotten to try out all the stuff yet.

Rowanomicon
2010-07-11, 11:53 AM
That's cool, I didn't know about the 10' step.
Admittedly I've never really had extensive access to non-core books.
In fact it's been a long time since I've used any books.
I use d20srd.org when I have to look something up.

I'm not particularly the best homebrewer either, and certainly not compared to what I've seen on this forum.
That's why I'm looking for help.
I've asked a couple other people too.
I'll definitely send you a PM with some of my ideas.

I like what you've done with the Monk and certainly a good place to start with Martial Arts in D&D.

EDIT: HAHAHA! I forgot the "not" in "I'm not particularly the best homebrewer either" sorry...

NecroticPunch
2010-07-11, 01:01 PM
I like what you've done to the Monk. Now he can run around and circles, while at the same time doing flips, on a cloud! And he can jump up to the cloud!

jiriku
2010-07-11, 06:00 PM
I like what you've done to the Monk. Now he can run around and circles, while at the same time doing flips, on a cloud! And he can jump up to the cloud!

Which is really where it's at!


I would just like to say that this monk is awesome enough that I'm playing one in a game right now, and (when the dice decide to stop hating me) it's working great. It still doesn't have the same damage output (which may change with the weapon feat) but I hit so much more (or at least, I would if i didn't always roll 2s) It's an excellent class so far, though I'm only lv 6, and haven't gotten to try out all the stuff yet.

Wow! I'm excited to hear someone's using it. What can you tell me about your build? What sort of damage have you been scoring, against what types of opponents? Are you using the basic chassis with unarmed strikes, or are you using Crash Like a Wave, Bend Like a Reed with monk weapons?

Edit: Actually, now that I think about it, I bet I know why your damage is low. You're using all those stock monk feats where you've got to invest in a three-feat chain in order to deal 0.00001 points of extra damage per attack once per day. I've updated my second post (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=8357956&postcount=2) with some homebrew variations on classic monk feats. These are the standard feat options for monks in my campaign that I run. Taken with the revised monk, these feats should offer you enough options to deal the same damage the other melee characters are doing. With the right feat selection, you can even rival the damage output of heavy-hitting classes like barbarian, swordsage, and warblade.

ForzaFiori
2010-07-11, 10:30 PM
It's gestalt, Monk6/Psion6, so a small amount of MAD, though the psion is mainly to get a few long lasting boosts and healing. In the game, each PC and NPC has a template that changes their type (for instance, my character is a human, with an energy template that makes him elemental).

So far, I've managed to land both attacks off a flurry onto a construct Treant, dealing 18 and 15 damage (getting a +10 or +11 on attack depending on the weapon, and +7 damage, +19 to disarm with a sai due to a houserule that a sai doesn't take a -4 to disarm). Against an ogre, I scored 10 damage, though by this point, the dice decided to hate me. I don't think I've rolled a decent roll in over an encounter, and the one before that wasn't great. Nearly disarmed the ogre earlier, but rolled a 5.

All in all, at 6th level, I'm the skill-monkey of the group, AND managing attacks of 25-30, and damage of around 20. Disarm attempts should average in the 30s. AC is my only problem, at 16 normally, 22 after a quick power in the mornings. As someone who's tried billions of different monk builds and fixes, I can say that this is easily the best one I've seen so far. The class has a role, and can hit constantly, even if it doesn't always do damage. I can land more hits per round than a fighter, since I can hit with a flurry. He may do 40 damage on a hit, but I do 20 twice. All in all, an excellent fix.

No idea how good it is against casters though, all we've fought so far have been tanks.

EDIT: Also, on the feats, you might wanna put a time limit on the fire attack and fire defense ones, or you can blow a use of stunning fist and be surrounded by fire forever.

jiriku
2010-07-11, 10:48 PM
That does sound pretty solid. When compared to a rogue, scout, or ranger, you're more skilled than the usual scout or ranger, you're dealing better damage than a typical scout, and you're more mobile than most rangers or rogues. AC 22 is actually pretty solid for most ECL 6 characters, especially skirmishers, although it sounds like your group may be facing tougher challenges than usual (I suppose that's par for the course in a gestalt game).

Against casters, your high saves, high touch AC, and Evasion should make tagging you with a direct attack quite difficult. With good Ref saves, in-class Balance and Escape Artist, and blindsense through the ACF if you took it, you're also well-equipped to overcome the typical CR-appropriate battlefield control spells like grease, web, and glitterdust.

Keep me posted as you find anything interesting...it's great to hear field reports on the class!

Tinydwarfman
2010-07-12, 11:16 AM
The class looks amazing. But I think some of the feats are ridiculously overpowered. Specifically, a lot of the "you get more the more IUS feats you have". The fire one, for example, is like Burning Blade++ that doesn't take an action to activate. Now, this would be all well and good on a normal monk, but on your monk they seems too strong.

jiriku
2010-07-12, 11:27 AM
Your comparison to burning blade is persuasive. I've modified Fiery Fists to be much more like the burning blade series of maneuvers. Damage will still scale with feat acquisition, but much more slowly now.

I'm open to reconsidering any of the feat revisions. Many of them have not yet been playtested in my campaign (there are far more than you can tack on a single monk). Do you have specific complaints about any of the other feats?

Tinydwarfman
2010-07-12, 02:59 PM
Fiery Defense suffers a bit the same problem as the fists, but it's not as bad.
Eagle Claw Attack should require an expenditure of stunning fist uses to prevent monks from having passwall at will.
Improved Ki Strike and Defense are hard to evaluate, especially considering how MAD has been reduced. I don't know.
I am wary of Flying Kick, and if you can flurry on a charge it will do ridiculous damage. Uberchargers are frowned upon in my opinion.
I fell that Fists of Iron should require additional Stunning Fist uses as it gets stronger, to keep it in line with Expansion and the like.

Thats all for now. I'll post more later.

jiriku
2010-07-12, 04:14 PM
Fiery Defense suffers a bit the same problem as the fists, but it's not as bad.
Eagle Claw Attack should require an expenditure of stunning fist uses to prevent monks from having passwall at will.
Improved Ki Strike and Defense are hard to evaluate, especially considering how MAD has been reduced. I don't know.
I am wary of Flying Kick, and if you can flurry on a charge it will do ridiculous damage. Uberchargers are frowned upon in my opinion.
I fell that Fists of Iron should require additional Stunning Fist uses as it gets stronger, to keep it in line with Expansion and the like.

Thats all for now. I'll post more later.

We may find ourselves disagreeing on this, but I'm concerned that ten years of monk suckage may be subconsciously influencing you here. Looking at your comments:

Fiery Defense: I think you've got a point here. I'll nerf this one.
Eagle Claw Attack: a monk could do the same thing with an adamantine club. If a feat can't do half of what a non-magical weapon material does, what can it do?
Improved Ki Strike and Defense: I agree. Hard to evaluate. They sort of straddle the border between feats and class features.
Flying Kick: compare to the feat Spirited Charge, or the 1st-level spell rhino's rush. Again, if a feat can't do what a 1st-level spell can do, what can it do?
Fists of Iron: Again, why is our frame of reference here a 1st-level power? Why not compare this to mighty wallop or greater mighty wallop instead, or even to righteous might or giant size for that matter?

We've got to get ourselves out of this trap of thinking that a feat should be weaker than a 1st-level spell or a minor piece of gear.

Pechvarry
2010-07-12, 05:16 PM
As a fan of remakes whose tables look almost exactly like the PHB tables, I approve of this fix.

Some thoughts you're welcome to ignore:

I'd still consider lowering their skills to 6+int (as ranger), unless you use a Rogue "fix" in your campaign, as well. Especially with the super-huge skill bonuses, they shouldn't actually need to max those skills. This is pretty low on my priority list of things that should change.

Oddly, I really like that you kept it medium BAB. The way flurry works, and with you making it function the way it should be (really like the combat reflexes bit, btw), the extra iterative of full BAB is moot. A quick comparison. Standard DPS is (Full BAB + weapon enhancement + Stat). Your monk is (.75 BAB + greater magic weapon values + Stat + WIS). At lower levels, this is actually much more potent than full BAB, though the gap closes as level increases -- though it'll certainly never fall below full BAB unless You're Doing It Wrong™.

That reminds me -- the bit where players get to add Dex to attack/damage if they choose. I'd consider adding a line about "treat as if they possess Weapon Finesse for meeting prerequisites". On the other hand, Shadow Blade is pretty sick on this class. Up to you if you want the synergy to be that high.

Diamond Soul not being in the text, I assume it's unchanged except for level obtained?

Ki Shot class feature requires Stunning Fist uses, which your Monk may or may not possess. This brings me to another issue:

Wis uses/day can get a bit convoluted with multiple abilities to track. You have wis uses/day of at least 4 different abilities, not to mention Wholeness of Body points to track and Stunning Fist uses to boot.

Have you considered trying to unify that, some? I don't mean to shove my ideas down your throat, but a method I was intending to implement with my own monks and ninjas is a systemic change:

Ki Pool
Characters have a Ki Pool equal to (Monk Level + Ninja Level + 1/4th non-monk/ninja HD + WIS modifier). In theory, all characters have such inner talent, but require the correct class features or feats (usually Stunning Fist) to access it.

This meshing of Ninja's Ki Pool and the Stunning Fist mechanic means Ninjas gain a lot more Ki uses later on in their career, while Monks gain significantly more in the early parts of their career. Naturally, Stunning Fist uses 1 point per use. From here, you can simply change a lot of Monk's class features to take Ki in varying amounts. Then you can load up the late end of their career with improving previous abilities through the expenditure of additional Ki. For example, 12th level: Abundant Step as a move action and 2 points, 16th: Abundant as a Swift for 3-4 points. And maybe even 20th: Immediate action Abundant Step at an astronomical Ki cost (Abrupt Jaunt doesn't seem bad as a capstone...). Also worthy of note, if you actually use that example, it'd be ideal to limit the character to only 1 Abundant Step/turn.

jiriku
2010-07-12, 06:35 PM
Skills: I'm inclined against changing the skills, but you're the third person to suggest it, so let's talk shop.

My position is that the revised monk is intended to take its place as a skill monkey alongside the beguiler, rogue, factotum, scout, ninja, expert, and spellthief. Since the monk has Int as a dump stat, I maintain that, like the rogue and scout, he needs 8 skill points per level at a minimum to fill that role. Beguiler, spellthief and factotum have an Int focus and spells to boot, so they can get away with only 6 points per level. Expert and Ninja have 6 points per level without spells or an Int focus, and frankly, the expert is an NPC class for a reason and limited skills is one of the reasons the ninja class sucks. Let us not go down that road.

So, what's your reasoning behind preferring 6 points per level over 8?

Base Attack: Thank you for seeing this! Many people don't seem to get it. My approach was "monks have a medium base attack, and don't function in melee. So, let's add class features so that the monk does function in melee with its current attack bonus." You'll also note that every one of the skill monkey classes I mentioned above has a medium base attack bonus as well. And as you've observed, medium base attack + empty strike + flurry >= full base attack in almost every situation, and the ability to flurry on the move puts the monk well ahead of classes like fighter, knight, and paladin in the mobility department -- which is as it should be for a skirmisher.

Weapon Finesse: I can see how giving virtual Weapon Finesse is helpful for meeting prerequisites. Otherwise you have to spend a feat to no effect. I'll add that in.

Diamond Soul: Unchanged, but moved to a level at which it's a more level-appropriate benefit.

Ki Shot: You've got a good point. I may grant stunning fist as an automatic bonus feat and substite another feat at 1st level. Stunning fist is really an iconic monk ability anyhow -- and so many of the splatbooks feats are built around the assumption that you have it.

Ability Management: Yeah. One of my concerns is that there are a lot of consumables to manage. I specifically don't want to add a new power system like power points or ki points or anything like that. For me, that crosses the line between "revised monk" and "new class that is very monk-like". Also, others have already done psionic monks, ki monks, and martial initiator monks. Those wells have already been tapped, IMO. I'm really aiming for Monk Classic here.


What I could do is create a menu power, where you have x uses per day of your power and gain additional options for those uses as you advance in level. I've done that a lot with other classes and feel pretty comfortable within that design space. Let me think on this.

Pechvarry
2010-07-13, 01:15 AM
Skills: I'm inclined against changing the skills, but you're the third person to suggest it, so let's talk shop.

My position is that the revised monk is intended to take its place as a skill monkey alongside the beguiler, rogue, factotum, scout, ninja, expert, and spellthief. Since the monk has Int as a dump stat, I maintain that, like the rogue and scout, he needs 8 skill points per level at a minimum to fill that role. Beguiler, spellthief and factotum have an Int focus and spells to boot, so they can get away with only 6 points per level. Expert and Ninja have 6 points per level without spells or an Int focus, and frankly, the expert is an NPC class for a reason and limited skills is one of the reasons the ninja class sucks. Let us not go down that road.

So, what's your reasoning behind preferring 6 points per level over 8?

No reason. You just converted me.


Ability Management: Yeah. One of my concerns is that there are a lot of consumables to manage. I specifically don't want to add a new power system like power points or ki points or anything like that. For me, that crosses the line between "revised monk" and "new class that is very monk-like". Also, others have already done psionic monks, ki monks, and martial initiator monks. Those wells have already been tapped, IMO. I'm really aiming for Monk Classic here.


What I could do is create a menu power, where you have x uses per day of your power and gain additional options for those uses as you advance in level. I've done that a lot with other classes and feel pretty comfortable within that design space. Let me think on this.

I understand what you're saying -- that it's frighteningly similar to Power Points, for instance. But I think what you're considering doing in its place is pretty similar in function, if not form: X uses of Abundant Step that you can instead use to go Ethereal instead. Might be easy to grant them Stunning Fist and simply have everything based off of Stun uses.

As-is, at least you're using the same formula for it. It kinda bothers me when I see homebrew stuff where there'll be stuff like "you can use it 3+Cha times/day..." and then another ability that you can use "a number of times per day equal to half your levels in this class + your cha mod" so now you have an ability that's 3+cha times/day and another that'll end up 10+cha, and it just gets hard to keep track of what and suddenly you're adding 3+cha to damage instead of just cha or what-have-you. yours is a pretty simple Wis times/day min 1. Write it on your character sheet like spells per level and you're good to go.

Tinydwarfman
2010-07-13, 03:19 PM
We may find ourselves disagreeing on this, but I'm concerned that ten years of monk suckage may be subconsciously influencing you here. Looking at your comments:

Fiery Defense: I think you've got a point here. I'll nerf this one.
Eagle Claw Attack: a monk could do the same thing with an adamantine club. If a feat can't do half of what a non-magical weapon material does, what can it do?
Improved Ki Strike and Defense: I agree. Hard to evaluate. They sort of straddle the border between feats and class features.
Flying Kick: compare to the feat Spirited Charge, or the 1st-level spell rhino's rush. Again, if a feat can't do what a 1st-level spell can do, what can it do?
Fists of Iron: Again, why is our frame of reference here a 1st-level power? Why not compare this to mighty wallop or greater mighty wallop instead, or even to righteous might or giant size for that matter?

We've got to get ourselves out of this trap of thinking that a feat should be weaker than a 1st-level spell or a minor piece of gear.

Eagle Claw: True, but the sheer amount of hardness that it pierces is daunting. The fact that an Iron wall has Hardness 8 makes the fact that you get to pierce like hardness 50 pretty fast is weird. The scaling mechanic is almost completely unnecessary, and too fast. If you want it pierce everything, just say that it pierces everything.

Flying Kick: This is just my opinion, but those are badly designed. Straight up doubling should almost never be used. They are balanced if you take 1 attack, not an entire flurry. Ridiculous damage ensues. I think when you use it it should impose some kind of a penalty, like a -5 to attack or something.

Fists of Iron: This is true... I tend not to like to compare to spell, because then we end up with feat-form celerity, but this is true. IMO, Greater Mighty Wallop is overpowered, but I guess you do have to wait until higher levels until you can use it. Just make sure that it cannot stack with itself.

jiriku
2010-07-13, 04:37 PM
Well, I can see your point on Eagle Claw. There really isn't much in the game that has hardness greater than 20. Conversely, there ought to be a place in that progression at which the monk can bypass hardness on boards, but not steel bars. I'll cut it to a five-point progression, include a bump for ki strike (adamantine), and make it uncapped after 20. I gotta admit there really probably aren't many situations where you're facing a hardness of 30+. :smalltongue:

Saint GoH
2010-07-16, 06:06 PM
I really like this class... I find it to be the salvation of the monk that isn't:

"Unarmed Swordsage go go go."

However, I did have a problem with the Dance of the Elements. In many of the games I've been apart of, skill-monkey's win, and having a flat enhancement to your Jump, Tumble and Balance that's larger then most people will ever see seems a little ridiculous. Pumping full skill points into it you would be able to do epic skill uses at level 9. Seems a little too powerful.

jiriku
2010-07-16, 06:29 PM
You are spot on - the revised monk is a very good skill monkey. If the DM offers challenges in which skillmonkeys will win, then the monk is going to do some winning.

As for the epic DC's, what is your concern about them? Is the word "epic" that's got you disturbed? Because this is what epic skill DCs allow you to do:

walk on water
run up walls
hover
stand up quickly
fall off a cliff and not get hurt


Last time I checked, a 5th-level cleric or wizard can duplicate every single one of those effects. "Epic" skill uses aren't really very epic.

UserClone
2010-07-16, 06:40 PM
Agreed. In fact, jiriku, i'd say that the skill bonus is probably my favorite revision. The thing about epic skill usage that kills me (besides the fact you already pointed out - namely, that magic does it better and waaaaay sooner), is the simple fact that very few characters will ever see epic play. This gives these fun abilities the chance to stretch their collective muscles and get some actual use for a change. I support that.

jiriku
2010-07-19, 09:20 AM
Hmmm, I think I smell a revised rogue in here somewhere, one that gets a version of skill mastery that does something slightly outrageous like doubling the effect of skill ranks....hmmm, I must think on this.

Edit: I've reformatted the entire OP to make it more readable. For those who are actually using the revised monk in your games, it should be a lot easier to use the OP to play by without having the have the Player's Handbook open right next to you for reference.

Edit Edit: Created an Ascetic Naturalist feat supporting a druid-monk multiclass, at the suggestion of Fitz10019. Thanks for the excellent suggestion, Fitz!

Newt
2010-11-06, 01:48 PM
I am concerned that Esoteric Weapons Training may lead to some genre-clashing situations (e.g. a monk with a cutlass, monk-pirates, yarr!), but I'll leave it to DM discretion to decide when to stomp on any particularly bizarre weapon choices.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Wushu_dao.jpg

You recognise that yea? That pose with that type of sword has been in plenty of movies, used in an RL martial arts too. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Changquan

Cutless is a sabre, same as Dao. :smalltongue:

Yarr or ... Whatever ninjas say when they do their equivalent of a lunge. Maybe laugh madly for effect.


Nice revision though, it's instantly recognizable as a core Monk, but effective. And the ability to flurry on the move is sweet. :D Actually fits my idea of where Monk should be, up there with a Rogue for tumbling around being awesome. Well done

I am so using it as a Chang Quan monk, would work brilliantly. Still like Two-Bladed Sword, but a cutlass Dao is fine.


One thing with the description, Quivering Palm spoiler box has the Empty Step text and Empty Step has half of some text from something. For when you're in an editing mood.

Newt
2010-11-06, 01:50 PM
I understand what you're saying -- that it's frighteningly similar to Power Points, for instance. But I think what you're considering doing in its place is pretty similar in function, if not form: X uses of Abundant Step that you can instead use to go Ethereal instead. Might be easy to grant them Stunning Fist and simply have everything based off of Stun uses.

I'm having this debate on another thread at the moment.

With Ki as the focus for all of a Monks abilities, but the Monk not focused around gaining Ki, you start to lose bad.

A Psion uses PSP's, but the entire point of their existence is gaining PSP's, not hitting people. A Monk that uses Ki for its core abilities will reach a point early on where it novas and dies. And we don't want to do that to our poor Monk.

Compare the core Monk to a Rogue, instead of Sneak Attack to boost dagger damage, they gain unarmed damage, instead of pursuing the TWF tree (because why wouldn't you?) they gain Flurry of Blows. Skill wise, 3E had the right idea with 5 skill points, as a Human that gets you to 6. Rogues are still charmers and Assassins with their Int/Cha focus, so there's still room for them. Monks just wuxia the hell out of the place instead of wearing black and quick drawing a dagger. :P

But yea, helps if you think of Monks as Rogues, Rangers as Ninjas, etc. Variants, but the same fuzzy and lovable base class underneath.

jiriku
2010-11-06, 05:33 PM
Good catch. I'm still running playtests on this class, and I still consider it a WIP, but so far the results have been pretty satisfactory.

I see a lot of people who compare the monk to the fighter and try to push it in that direction, but to me it seems obvious that the monk is a skillful class, more like the rogue or ninja (as you pointed out). Monks are famous for feats of mobility, insight, and dexterity, not for grouping up into armies and conquering their neighbors.

Playtest results so far have shown the monk to be a highly mobile striker able to contribute well in running battles, sneak about stealthily, or perform the occasional feat of impressive martial arts (punch down a door or make a standing leap to the top of a wall).

Keep the feedback coming, as I'm always tinkering with this class and revising it bit by bit!

ForzaFiori
2010-11-07, 11:22 AM
I'm currently working with this class in a gestalt game (Mixed with a psion), and it is doing amazing. It doesn't put out as much damage as a fighter or anything like that, but has an attack modifier that is through the roof. This is a really well made class

huyche
2011-02-18, 09:28 AM
Hello.

I've stumbled upon this thread today and checked it thoroughly. From my limited and subjective view, this is a great implementation and I can't wait to try it out.

What could I add to this...
Martial arts styles as an optional addition? Along the lines of the ones listed in OA.
Or something like this (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/classes/variantCharacterClasses.htm#monkVariantFightingSty les).


A few additional feats could help the class too.
Here are some that looked fitting:

There is a trio of similar skills, one of which was listed by you - Flying Kick.
As others had pointed out, double the damage seems somewhat overpowered, maybe it could be modified and/or mixed together with the following:

Battle Jump
You know how to launch a devastating attack from above by dropping onto your opponent.

Benefit: You can execute a charge by simply dropping from a height of at least 5 feet above your opponent. For example, a ledge 10 feet above the floor of a cavern would suffice for jumping on a Medium-sized creature, while a ledge 15 feet high is required for a jumping on a Large creature. You can't jump from more than 30 feet above your opponent, nor can you effectively battle jump while under the influence of a fly or levitate spell or effect, as you have to hurl yourself down on your foe.
If you hit, you can choose either to deal double damage with a melee weapon or natural attack or to attempt a trip attack. You are treated as one size category larger than normal if you try to trip your opponent with the battle jump. After you attack, you take falling damage as normal for the distance you jumped. You are entitled to a Jump check (DC 15) to take less damage, as if you had fallen 10 feet less than you actually did. If you fail this Jump check, you fall prone 5 feet from your opponent.
You can also use Battle Jump to begin a grapple attempt instead of making a normal attack. If you do, you are treated as one size category larger than normal for the first grapple check following the battle jump.
Normal: Anybody can try to jump down on an enemy, but it is not considered a charge, and they do not gain double damage or the size bonus for the ensuing attack.
Leap Attack
You can combine a powerful charge and a mighty leap into one devastating attack.

Prerequisite: Jump 8 ranks, Power Attack.

Benefit: You can combine a jump with a charge against an opponent. If you cover at least 10 feet of horizontal distance with your jump, and you end your jump in a square from which you threaten your target, you can double the extra damage dealt by your use of the Power Attack feat.
If you use this tactic with a two-handed weapon, you instead triple the extra damage from Power Attack.
This attack must follow all the normal rules for using the Jump skill and for making a charge, except that you ignore rough terrain in any squares you jump over.
So, what if the modified feat only doubles the damage added by Power Attack usage? Together with a two-handed fighting style (hammer fist) it would be multiplied by 3.
Plus keep the option of exchanging the extra damage in favor of trip attack (like in Battle Jump).
Call it something like Mantis Leap.

Hammer Fist
You are trained in an unarmed fighting style that emphasizes two-handed strike.

Prerequisite: Str 13, Improved Unarmed Strike
Benefit: You may make a single unarmed attack with both hands to add 1-1/2 your Strength bonus on the damage roll. This extra damage does not
apply if you make a flurry of blows attack or you are holding anything in either hand.

Snap Kick
You have continued to hone your unarmed combat skills, and you deal more damage with your unarmed strikes.

Prerequisite: Improved Unarmed Strike, base attack bonus +6.

Benefit: When you make a melee attack with one or more melee weapons (including a standard attack, full attack, or even a strike maneuver), you can make an additional attack at your highest attack bonus. This attack is an unarmed attack that deals damage equal to your base unarmed attack damage + 1/2 your Str bonus. You take a -2 penalty on all attack rolls you make this round.

Superior Unarmed Strike
Your unarmed strikes have become increasingly deadly, enabling you to strike your foes in their most vulnerable areas.

Prerequisite: Improved Unarmed Strike, base attack bonus +3.

Benefit: You deal unarmed damage as a monk four levels higher.

Versatile Unarmed Strike
You employ a variety of unarmed fighting styles, allowing you to alter the type of damage your attacks deal.

Prerequisite: Improved Unarmed Strike

Benefit: As a swift action, you can opt for your unarmed strikes to deal your choice of bludgeoning, piercing, or slashing damage. Once you make this choice, your unarmed strikes continue to deal the chosen damage type until you use another swift action to change it.

Acrobatic Strike
Your dexterous maneuvers and skilled acrobatics allow you to slip past a foe's defenses and deliver an accurate strike against him.

Prerequisite: Tumble 12 ranks

Benefit: If you succeed in using Tumble to avoid an opponent's attack of opportunity, you gain a +4 bonus on the next attack that you make against that foe as long as the attack occurs before the end of your current turn.

Knock-Down
Your mighty blows can knock foes off their feet.

Prerequisites: Base attack bonus +2, Improved Trip, Str 15+.

Benefit: Whenever you deal 10 or more points of damage to your opponent in melee, you may make a trip attack as a free action against the same target.

Errata-ed: Use of this feat cannot be combined with Improved Trip to generate an extra attack, and successful use of this feat does not grant an extra attack through the Cleave or Great Cleave feats.


Snatch Arrows
You are adept at grabbing incoming arrows, as well as crossbow bolts, spears, and other projectile or thrown weapons.

Prerequisites: Base attack bonus +3, Deflect Arrows, Dex 15+, Improved Unarmed Strike.

Benefit: You must have at least one hand free (holding nothing) to use this feat. When using the Deflect Arrows feat, you may catch the weapon instead of just deflecting it. Thrown weapons such as spears or axes can be thrown back at the original attacker as an immediate free action or kept. Projectile weapons such as arrows or bolts can be fired back normally on your next turn or later, if you possess the proper kind of bow or crossbow.

Choke Hold
You have learned the correct way to apply pressure to render an opponent unconscious.

Prerequisites: Improved Unarmed Strike, Improved Grapple, Stunning Fist.

Benefit: If you pin your opponent while grappling and maintain the pin for 1 full round, at the end of the round your opponent must make a Fortitude saving throw (DC 10 +1/2 your level + your Wisdom modifier). If the saving throw fails, your opponent falls unconscious for 1d3 rounds.

Defensive Strike
You can turn a strong defense into a powerful offense.

Prerequisite: Int 13+, Expertise, Dex 13+, Dodge.

Benefit: If an opponent attacks you and misses while you are using the total defense action, you can attack that opponent on your next turn with a +4 bonus on your attack roll. You gain no bonus against an opponent that does not attack you or against an opponent that attacks and does not miss.

Defensive Throw
You can use your opponent's weight, strength, and momentum against her, deflecting her attack and throwing her to the ground.

Prerequisite : Dex 13+, Improved Unarmed Strike, Dodge, Improved Trip, Combat Reflexes.

Benefit: If the opponent you have chosen to receive your AC bonus from the Dodge feat attacks you and misses, you can make an immediate improved trip attack against that opponent. This attempt counts against your allowed attacks of opportunity this round.

Falling Star Strike
You have mastered the art of striking a nerve that blinds a humanoid opponent.

Prerequisites : Improved Unarmed Strike, base attack bonus +4 or higher, Stunning Fist, Wis 17+.

Benefit: Against a humanoid opponent, you can make an unarmed attack that has a chance of blinding your target. if your attack is successful, your target must attempt a Fortitude saving throw (DC 10 + 1/2 your level + your Wisdom modifier).
If the target fails this saving throw, he is blinded for 1 round per level you possess. In addition to the obvious effects, a blinded creature suffers a 50% miss chance in combat (all opponents have full concealment), loses any Dexterity bonus to AC, grants a +2 bonus on attackers' attack rolls (they are effectively invisible), moves at half speed, and suffers a -4 penalty on most Strength- and Dexterity-based skills.
Should most likely count as 1 usage of stunning fist.


Grappling Block
You can catch and pin an opponent's weapon with your bare hands.

Prerequisite : Improved Unarmed Strike, Deflect Arrows, Int 13+, Expertise, Improved Disarm, Combat Reflexes.

Benefit: You must have both hands free or be holding weapons designed to catch other weapons to use this feat. Once per round when you would normally be hit by a melee weapon, you may make a special disarm attempt against your opponent. This attempt counts against your allowed attacks of opportunity this round. You make an opposed attack roll (with your unarmed strike, sai, or jitte) against the attack roll that hit you. The opponent's attack roll is not modified by the size of the weapon. If you succeed, you grab the weapon away from your opponent (if you are unarmed) or knock the weapon to the ground (if you are armed). You may only use this feat against weapons up to two sizes larger than you.
Deflect Arrows requirement seems excessive here.


Prone Attack
You attack from a prone position without penalty.

Prerequisites: Base attack bonus +2 or higher, Dex 15+, Lightning Reflexes.

Benefit: You can make an attack from the prone position and suffer no penalty on your attack roll. If your attack roll is successful, you may regain your feet immediately as a free action. Opponents gain no bonus on melee attacks against you while you are prone.

Unbalancing Strike
You can strike a humanoid opponent's joints to knock your target off balance.

Prerequisites: Improved Unarmed Strike, Stunning Fist, Wis 15+.

Benefit: Against a humanoid opponent, you can make an unarmed attack that has a chance of unbalancing your target, if your attack is successful, you deal normal damage and your target must attempt a Reflex saving throw (DC 10 + 1/2 your level + your Wisdom modifier). If the target fails this saving throw, he is thrown off balance for 1 round, losing any Dexterity bonus to AC and giving attackers a +2 bonus on their attack rolls.
Also as 1 stunning fist attack?


Deft Opportunist
You refuse to give into death while your comrades still depend on you.

Prerequisites: Combat Reflexes, Dex 15

Benefit: If you begin your turn adjacent to a foe who did not attack you in the last round, you may immediately make an attack of opportunity against that foe.

Elusive target
Trying to land a blow against you can be a maddening experience.

Prerequisite: Dodge, Mobility, base attack bonus +6

Benefit: The Elusive Target feat enables the use of three tactical maneuvers. Negate Power Attack: To use this maneuver, you must designate a specific foe to be affected by your Dodge feat. If that foe uses the Power Attack feat against you, the foe gains no bonus on the damage roll but still takes the corresponding penalty on the attack roll. Diverting Defense: To use this maneuver, you must be flanked and you must designate one of the flanking attackers to be affected by your Dodge feat. The first attack of the round from the designated attacker automatically misses you and may strike the other flanking foe instead; the attacking creature makes an attack roll normally, and its ally is considered flatfooted. If the designated attacker is making a full attack against you, its second and subsequent attacks function normally. Cause Overreach: To use this maneuver, you must provoke an attack of opportunity from a foe by moving out of a threatened square. If the foe misses you, you can make a free trip attempt against this foe, and the foe does not get a chance to trip you if your attempt fails.

Deadly Defense
You are at your most dangerous when forced to protect yourself.

Benefit: When fighting defensively, you deal an extra 1d6 points of damage with any light weapon or with any weapon to which the Weapon
Finesse feat applies (such as a rapier, spiked chain, or whip).
This feat’s benefit applies only when you are unarmored or wearing light armor and not using a shield.

Special: If you have the Combat Expertise feat, you also gain the benefit of Deadly Defense when taking a penalty of at least –2 on your attack roll from that feat.

Melee Evasion
Your speed, agility, and talent for intelligent fighting allow you to avoid your opponent's blows. You take careful stock of an opponent and slip away from his sword blow just as he commits to the attack.

Prerequisite: Combat Expertise, Dodge, DEX 13, INT 13

Benefit: While fighting defensively, you can attempt to negate a single attack made by the target of your Dodge feat. If this opponent attacks you, use an immediate action to make a d20 roll modifi ed by your highest base attack bonus. The result is used as your normal AC and touch AC against that single, specifi c attack from your opponent. You cannot use this feat if your Dexterity bonus to AC does not apply against your opponent's attack.

Feign Weakness
You capitalize on your foe’s perceptions of your unarmed status.

Prerequisites: Base attack bonus +2, Improved Unarmed Strike.

Benefit: If you make a successful Bluff check against your opponent’s Sense Motive check, you lure the foe into attempting an attack of opportunity because he thinks you are unarmed. But you are armed, and you make your attack against your drawnout foe who is caught flat-footed, before he takes his attack of opportunity.
You also may attempt this feat with a Tiny or Small weapon with which you are proficient by attempting to hide it until the last second, but you incur a –2 or –6 penalty on your Bluff check, respectively. You can use this feat with a disguised weapon, such as a war fan, at no penalty on the Bluff check.

Errata-ed: Using Feign Weakness is a standard action, just like a feint, except that if you succeed you get to make your attack immediately. You can only Feign Weakness once per encounter. After one use, your opponents are too wary to fall for this maneuver again.

Pulverize foe
You enjoy smashing your opponents into submission.

Prerequisites: Str 15, base attack bonus +6, proficient with bludgeoning melee weapon.

Benefit: If you hit the same enemy more than once in a single round with a bludgeoning melee weapon, you deal an extra 1d6 points of bludgeoning damage with each hit after the first.


The alternative class feature from Dungeonscape seems nicely fitting too.

Alternative Class Feature: Wall Walker
You have the uncanny ability to travel along vertical surfaces for a short time.

Level: 4th.

Replaces: If you select this alternative class feature, you do not gain the slow fall ability.

Benefit: Beginning at 4th level, as a move action, you can run up or down a vertical surface a total distance of 20 feet without making a Climb check. You add 10 feet to this distance at 6th level and every two levels thereafter, up to your maximum speed. You can use this ability only once per round (so you can’t make a double move up or down a wall).
If you do not reach the top of the vertical surface or find a suitable hand- or foothold, you must make a Climb check appropriate to the surface. If you succeed on the check, you can use this ability again in the next round.
Otherwise, you fall or make no progress, as determined by the check result.
You can’t use this ability to traverse a ceiling or overhang.

Aaand another one:

Prayerful Meditation
Your religious convictions protect you from the spells and
magical abilities of those who oppose your beliefs.

Level: 3rd.

Replaces: This benefit replaces the still mind class
feature.

Benefit: Your adherence to a religious path has developed
in you a resistance to antithetical magic. You gain a +2 bonus
on saving throws against spells and effects from chaotic-
aligned creatures and creatures with a moral (good/evil)
alignment component opposite to yours. This is a super*
natural ability.



Edit: Also, there was something that added Wis modifier to the number of AoO, but I can't find it now.
And something about the hands that can make them deal any of the 3 damage types: slashing, bludgeoning or piercing.

May I suggest making the innate speed bonus the monks have stack with enhancement speed bonus somehow?

Lix Lorn
2011-02-18, 11:24 AM
Why does it have two different abilities called Empty Body in the text, one of which is called Empty Mind in the table? :smallconfused:

...also you still don't mention lawfulness on the class, despite me mentioning it in the first post that wasn't you. :smalltongue:
Oh, it is implied by the Ex-Monk bit though. May I request/beg an ACF that allows you to be nonlawful, and changes your DR at 20th level to match?

huyche
2011-02-18, 11:34 AM
Why does it have two different abilities called Empty Body in the text, one of which is called Empty Mind in the table?
I believe the first one is supposed to be called 'AC Bonus (Ex)'.


Isn't it implied that monks should be lawful? And anyway, ex-monks still retain all of their abilities.

A monk's training requires strict discipline. Only those who are lawful at heart are capable of undertaking it.

Lix Lorn
2011-02-18, 12:00 PM
Implied, but not stated.

Student of Chaos
Prerequisites: About to take their first level of Monk, chaotic alignment.
Benefit: May treat all references to Lawful in the Monk class as instead reading Chaotic. In addition, they may take the feat Axiomatic Strike as Anarchic strike, dealing their bonus damage to lawful creatures or those with DR/chaotic.

jiriku
2011-02-19, 01:19 AM
Why does it have two different abilities called Empty Body in the text, one of which is called Empty Mind in the table? :smallconfused:

...also you still don't mention lawfulness on the class, despite me mentioning it in the first post that wasn't you. :smalltongue:
Oh, it is implied by the Ex-Monk bit though. May I request/beg an ACF that allows you to be nonlawful, and changes your DR at 20th level to match?

Wow, how have I overlooked that typo for 10 months? It's fixed now. And the option for variant alignment and thus varied damage reduction is added, because Lix is a sweetie. Lixie... you can pay me later. :smallwink:


@ Huyche: I actually have a rather large collection of new and modified feats that I use in my own games. However, it clocks in at over 25 pages, so it's really beyond the scope of this class to post the entire thing. Instead, when I post a homebrew class, I just toss in an appetizer of a handful of my custom feats that are most relevant to the class at hand. I put more than the usual number in this thread because a) this was my first base class attempt and I was kind of feeling around in the dark, and b) monk-related feats are so consistently godawful that I couldn't in good conscience revise the monk and yet leave the community with the expectation that they should rely on those trash feats.

However, I agree with where you're coming from, that any comprehensive rebalance of the game ultimately needs to include a rebalance of several hundred badly balanced feats in order for the overhaul to be complete.

huyche
2011-02-19, 04:40 AM
Student of Chaos
Prerequisites: About to take their first level of Monk, chaotic alignment.
Benefit: May treat all references to Lawful in the Monk class as instead reading Chaotic. In addition, they may take the feat Axiomatic Strike as Anarchic strike, dealing their bonus damage to lawful creatures or those with DR/chaotic.
Chaos Monk (DR335 p88)
Alignment: any Lawful any Chaotic

Class Abilities

Flurry of Blows Greater Flurry Flailing Strike
When making a Full Round Attack with either Unarmed Strike or a Kata (i.e., special monk) weapon, the Chaos Monk has the option of taking the listed Penalty to hit (initially –2, reduced to –1 at 5th level, and becoming –0 at 9th level) to receive a random number of extra attacks.
1d4-1 at 1st
1d4 at 5th
1d6-1 at 10th
1d6 at 15th
Purity of Body Erratic Advance
When charging, the Chaos Monk’s target is Dazed for 1 round (Will Neg, DC = 10 + Chaos Monk class level). Usable Wisdom modifier times per day (min 1).
Wholeness of Body Displacing Stance
When active, attacks on the Chaos Monk have a 20% Miss Chance at 7th level and a 50% at 12th level. Activating this ability is a Standard Action and it can be used (˝ Chaos Monk class level) rounds per day (not necessarily consecutive).
Ki Strike (lawful) Ki Strike (chaotic)
Diamond Body Freedom of Thought
If the Chaos Monk fails a Will save vs. a Mind-Affecting effect, he/she may immediately reroll the save, though the second roll must be kept. Usable 1/day.
Perfect Self Anarchic Self
As Perfect Self, but the Chaos Monk gains the (chaotic) subtype.

Lix Lorn
2011-02-19, 08:56 AM
Wow, how have I overlooked that typo for 10 months? It's fixed now. And the option for variant alignment and thus varied damage reduction is added, because Lix is a sweetie. Lixie... you can pay me later. :smallwink:
Yaaaaaaay! :smallbiggrin: What currencies do you accept? :smallamused:

unosarta
2011-02-19, 09:07 AM
For Dance of the Elements, was it necessary that you gave level three characters a +10 bonus on four skill checks? :smallconfused:

I mean, I read your notes, but that still doesn't make any sense to me. Tumble is an incredibly powerful skill, allowing you to entirely invalidate entire builds focused on Attacks of Opportunity. I agree with giving monks the option of being really good at Tumble, but +10 at level three? And plus +60 at level eighteen? That is something I cannot agree with. At level nine, they can move without provoking attacks of opportunity without a chance of failure, without any Dexterity modifier, ranks in the skill, or circumstance bonii.

As a suggestion: it seems reasonable to let monks gain Abundant Step at will at higher levels.

Lix Lorn
2011-02-19, 09:12 AM
It's instead of giving them fly. They can hit Epic skill DCs in mid teen levels and thus walk on clouds.
Functional AND elegant.

Oh, could I recommend an addition to Improved Ki-Strike?
'If you have Versatile Unarmed Strike, you may choose the Keen enhancement, which functions as long as you deal slashing or piercing damage.'

Edit: I'd also request Ki Blast get a boost/rewrite. Because awesome.

unosarta
2011-02-19, 09:20 AM
It's instead of giving them fly. They can hit Epic skill DCs in mid teen levels and thus walk on clouds.
Functional AND elegant.

Invalidating an entire build is hardly elegant. Also, they cannot walk on clouds even with this bonus. Walking on clouds is a DC 120 Balance check, which, even at higher level, is incredibly unlikely to happen unless they are level twenty or have items that boost their Balance check.

And it honestly isn't a replacement for fly, or an effective one, at the very least. Long jump is a number of feet equal to the check, which is nice, but not fly. It is like fly, if one had to come down every round, and couldn't fly up very high. Honestly, the highest they are going to get with it at mid levels is +60, and that is with a bit of optimization. If they do reach that, they are going up 15 feet. Which honestly isn't that much. A caster with Fly can fly at 60 feet per round in any direction.

paddyfool
2011-02-19, 09:21 AM
For Dance of the Elements, was it necessary that you gave level three characters a +10 bonus on four skill checks? :smallconfused:

I mean, I read your notes, but that still doesn't make any sense to me. Tumble is an incredibly powerful skill, allowing you to entirely invalidate entire builds focused on Attacks of Opportunity. I agree with giving monks the option of being really good at Tumble, but +10 at level three? And plus +60 at level eighteen? That is something I cannot agree with. At level nine, they can move without provoking attacks of opportunity without a chance of failure, without any Dexterity modifier, ranks in the skill, or circumstance bonii.

As a suggestion: it seems reasonable to let monks gain Abundant Step at will at higher levels.

Have a look up the thread, and you'll find this has already been discussed:


@ paddyfool: A +60 bonus is extremely large, it's true. But +Win to Balance, Jump, and Tumble is still less potent than a Fly speed with Perfect maneuverability, which many other classes can access well before level 10. My goal is to enable monks to run up trees, dash across lakes, balance on an opponent's sword blade, and do all the cool stuff you see in wuxia movies like Kill Bill, Hero, or Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. Also, as a design goal I want to compensate for the lack of flight by enabling them to use their amazing mobility to get within jumping distance of low-flying enemies, then leap, flurry attack, and land unharmed.

unosarta
2011-02-19, 09:32 AM
Have a look up the thread, and you'll find this has already been discussed:

Except this entirely invalidates the rest of the class as anything but extra, and makes it just dip-material. "Monk twenty? Psha, I am going monk 3/Swordsage 17". Honestly, they would gain more benefit from that three level dip and bonus than this class does. The rest of the class A) isn't able to do many character roles/types well (which is also a fault of the original monk), and B) doesn't have many combat options.

"I can melee attack with my fists. I can melee attack with my fists. I can spend a standard action to do several melee attacks with my fists. I can shoot my fists? How does that work? I can Dim Door, but that is an inherently weak spell, especially considering that it can't even really account for mobility in this case, since I is a melee attacker. I can use a SoD a few times per day, but using Fortitude, the highest monster save, and if they make it they face no repercussions, and I can't even use it on them again. I can go ethereal. Woo. No combat change, I am still fighting with my fists, and I can't even attack now. Once per encounter, I can add my monk levels to anything. Still no combat change. I gain damage reduction. Still no change."

All of the interesting combat features come at low levels. Actually, let's just look at the first three levels. You gain: Two bonus feats, Flurry of Blows, Wis to AC, Trapfinding, Unarmed Strike, Evasion, Empty Strike, Still Mind, +10 Movement speed, +10 to Tumble, Jump, and Balance checks.

This is literally, probably the most dippable class I have yet to see. None of the higher level abilities encourage interesting combat options. I would have no reason at all to stay in this class past level three. It retains one of the main problems of the original monk.

huyche
2011-02-19, 09:54 AM
All of the interesting combat features come at low levels. Actually, let's just look at the first three levels. You gain: Two bonus feats, Flurry of Blows, Wis to AC, Trapfinding, Unarmed Strike, Evasion, Empty Strike, Still Mind, +10 Movement speed, +10 to Tumble, Jump, and Balance checks.
That unfortunately is true. Move DwtE higher? 6th level?
Leaving the usual tasty things available to those taking only the few first monk levels.
Anyway, isn't the whole 'I take 1 level in something to reap a couple of great bonuses' issue inherent to the majority of (prestige) classes? But I got your point that this revision makes it one of the more attractive ones to do so.

On a semi-related note I wanted to share this monkly prestige class (http://www.dandwiki.com/wiki/Enlightened_Fist_(3.5e_Prestige_Class)), as the first 7 levels of it seemed rather attractive.


Edit: the other homebrew monk class (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=164308) made me wondering if its possible to combine the better sides of both into one superior class (no longer tier 5 poop), while simultaneously preserving the original flavor.

I think that there should definitely be a choice of picking a fighting style, that comes in the form of an assortment of feats, certain bonuses and 'maneuvers'.

that any comprehensive rebalance of the game ultimately needs to include a rebalance of several hundred badly balanced feats in order for the overhaul to be complete.
Mostly because of the above, but without the ki-points and other resources overcomplicating the mechanics.

Saves against monk's abilities should be: X + 1/2 monk's level + monk's Wis bonus
And the daily uses of abilities should be equal to X + monk's Wis bonus.

Finally, think out the ways to make it unfavorable to dip into the early levels.

jiriku
2011-02-19, 06:40 PM
I am not overly concerned with people multiclassing between monk and other classes. Heck, people do that now.

It's also true that the revised monk can invalidate an AoO build. So can ten other classes, half of which are in the PHB. AoO fighters are weak; any character built around the assumption that all of his opponents will be melee combatants who are incapable of passing a DC 15 skill check is flawed.

I agree that providing alternative sets of bonus feats to mimic specific fighting styles would be a neat way to customize the monk. However, that gets into murky territory in which any chain I propose would have to contain revamped feats, since so many feats suck so badly. I doubt the community would ever come to consensus on which feats should be rewritten and how, so I think I'll simply endorse the concept and leave individual DMs and players to hammer out the details.

@ Lix: I don't take currency...

The idea of keen as an option for Improved Ki Strike is pretty sweet. It's added. Just be careful shaking hands! I'd like to improve Ki Blast, because, well, yeah, shoryouken, but the feat sucks so bad I'm kind of at a loss on that one. Maybe set the damage to 1d6/character level or something? 3d6 is just a tickle.

unosarta
2011-02-19, 06:48 PM
I am not overly concerned with people multiclassing between monk and other classes. Heck, people do that now.

And that is a detractor. A base class should be as enticing going to the twentieth level as going to the first three, unless one is only going through them to gain specific class features that do not exist elsewhere. The class features that you have that don't exist else where at low levels are a +10 bonus to Jump, Tumble, and Balance. The high level class features are either not very powerful, not very interesting, or come to late, if they do come at all. The class features that exist are all passive and rarely increase any actual strategy for playing the monk class itself, which is my main problem with this class, and something you still have yet to deal with.


It's also true that a monk can invalidate an AoO build at 3rd level. So ten other classes. AoO fighters are weak characters; any character built around the assumption that he will never face an opponent capable of passing a DC 15 skill check is a weak character.

It is DC 25, actually. Which, honestly, most low level characters cannot reach, even at level 7. In fact, the only level that you can reliably hit the DC (reliably being 80% of the time), is at level 10, without focusing entirely on it, which is class doesn't either, besides a footnote ability that provides a massive boost without increasing the options that one can use Tumble for.

jiriku
2011-02-19, 07:07 PM
Your criticism is noted, although I really think you should fact-check the numbers you're quoting, as they don't line up with my understanding of the rules at all. I'll also comment that playtest has shown the revised monk to be a versatile and effective character who easily finds a role within a party of mid-tier characters.

Other than the one you previously mentioned, do you have any specific suggestions for improving the class?

unosarta
2011-02-19, 07:25 PM
Your criticism is noted, although I really think you should fact-check the numbers you're quoting, as they don't line up with my understanding of the rules at all. I'll also comment that playtest has shown the revised monk to be a versatile and effective character who easily finds a role within a party of mid-tier characters.

Seventh level character, with full ranks and a 20 in Dexterity, but without any outside items or bonii = 10+5 = 15. The DC is 25. That means they have a half and half chance of not being AoOed, or being AoOed. At level ten: 13 ranks, plus a 24 in Dexterity = 13+7 = 20. 20/25 = 4/5 = .8, or 80%. If they do not max out Dexterity, or do not have full ranks in tumble? It gets even lower.

For a level three monk with only an 18 in Dexterity: 6+10+4 = 20. That right there is already a reliable means of success, and it goes even higher when if the monk has a racial bonus to Dexterity, or Dexterity boosting items. So, basically, a level 3 monk who has the same proportion of ranks and Dexterity (which the monk is already being provided an incentive for, which is honestly fine).

If the monk were to focus in it, and have an item? 6 (Ranks)+10 (DwtE)+4 (Dex)+3 (Skill Focus)+1 (Item)+2 (Mwk item) = +26, able to do it earlier than any other class. Even if you removed the crafted item of Tumble, you still have a 100% chance of making the check at level three. I would be honestly fine with that, though, if you had some other options to use Tumble for. But you don't. You are given those bonuses and never given anything more to do with them, which would make a far more interesting and capable melee warrior.


Other than the one you previously mentioned, do you have any specific suggestions for improving the class?

Able to use Jump before an attack roll in order to boost damage. Being able to intersperse standard action flurries with tumble movement. Being able to avoid grapples/charges/trips with Balance. Being able to do things with your skills besides just using them to Jump/Tumble/Balance with them. Doing this for other skills as well would be cool. More options for Trip, Grapple, Charge, Bull Rush, etc, that the monk can get as actual class features rather than feats. Or, being able to pick a path of specialization to go through with class features (like you could have a Grappling monk, or a Charging monk, or a Tripping monk.) These abilities would be more in the end levels of the class, along with the general all around useful class features like Empty Step, etc.

Basically, classes should be able to be multiple different character roles (brawler, monastical fighter, streetfighter, grappler, jyujutsu master), and also provide combat utility as well as out of combat utility. Combat utility involves being able to choose multiple different options for each combat, besides simply "I run in. I hit him a bunch of times with my fists. I continue to hit him a bunch of times with my fists." Out of combat utility is usually (for non-casters anyway) provided by skills, which you seem to have covered.

Just my two cents.

jiriku
2011-02-19, 07:58 PM
Ahem. It's usually 15, not 25. (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/skills/tumble.htm)

Your suggestions are intriguing.

Jump check to increase damage.
Movement during a flurry of blows.
Balance to avoid grapples, charges, and/or trips.
Additional trap/grapple/charge/bull rush options.


I'll think about this. Several of those options are already enabled by feats, but you make a good point that there's a difference between having the option of spending your feats on something and having that thing as a class feature and being free to spend your feats elsewhere.

Pechvarry
2011-02-19, 08:09 PM
And that is a detractor. A base class should be as enticing going to the twentieth level as going to the first three

While a lofty goal, that is your ideal; not a game design paradigm. I can only think of a single base class in 3.5 that follows your example: Knight. And it's one of said class' biggest weaknesses.

You seem very hung up on this comparison on skill checks between monk and other classes, instead of what this class can accomplish vs other classes. A level 5 swordsage can teleport at will, a level 7 wizard can destroy a game world. This monk fix gets something to compensate for not being able to fly.

unosarta
2011-02-19, 08:17 PM
Ahem. It's usually 15, not 25. (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/skills/tumble.htm)

Shoot, misread "move through enemies space" as "move through any area that opponent threatens."

Good point.



While a lofty goal, that is your ideal; not a game design paradigm. I can only think of a single base class in 3.5 that follows your example: Knight. And it's one of said class' biggest weaknesses.

You seem very hung up on this comparison on skill checks between monk and other classes, instead of what this class can accomplish vs other classes. A level 5 swordsage can teleport at will, a level 7 wizard can destroy a game world. This monk fix gets something to compensate for not being able to fly.

But the capstone doesn't even feel like a capstone. The later abilities aren't any more interesting than going into a PrC would be for combat related abilities. This isn't about comparing to other base classes, but comparing between this class and prestige classes that can be gotten into. Most of the monk (and melee classes, really) suck, but they will still probably have more combat options than this class. But honestly, why not compare it to other classes? If I can do the same things with another class, and with more power, then why wouldn't I?

As for flying; as I mentioned earlier, DwtE doesn't even begin to cover it.

Pechvarry
2011-02-19, 10:24 PM
Hmm. I guess my paradigm of class design is to never be too interesting after level 12 or so. Most campaigns end before then, so I hate neat stuff only coming at level 18.

unosarta
2011-02-19, 10:28 PM
Hmm. I guess my paradigm of class design is to never be too interesting after level 12 or so. Most campaigns end before then, so I hate neat stuff only coming at level 18.

Of course not! That would be endloading the class, which is honestly just as bad. The true paradigm would be to have abilities evenly spread over all class levels. Which this monk doesn't have, unfortunately.

But will soon, with all hope.

huyche
2011-02-20, 01:14 PM
But will soon, with all hope.
Hmmmm? (too short)

unosarta
2011-02-20, 01:37 PM
Hmmmm? (too short)

This class, as it is, has all of the interesting class features front loaded. I was talking about how it would hopefully soon have some interesting later on class features, since Jiriku seemed to be understanding my point.

All of the abilities past around 6-8 (probably more like 6, since Dimension Door is a really weak ability for a melee character) are either non-combat, and not very useful non-combat, or they are defensive abilities, or they are passive. The class gains an arbitrarily large bonus to three skills, and then never does anything else with them, while still not allowing the modifiers to allow the monk to reach most epic DCs without some serious cheese.

huyche
2011-02-20, 01:52 PM
This class, as it is, has all of the interesting class features front loaded. I was talking about how it would hopefully soon have some interesting later on class features, since Jiriku seemed to be understanding my point.

I've given this some serious thought in the past couple days and it looks like some of the shortcomings could be solved by just giving this revised class the swordsage's discipline access and stance/maneuver progression (and recovery).
Along with Insightful Strikes and Defensive Stance features.

Or better yet, create a pool of features like here (http://www.dnd-wiki.org/wiki/Monk,_Tome_(3.5e_Class)) for a fighting style, which can be picked over progressively. Scrap ToB maneuvers and add to the list of active abilities to choose from.


All of the abilities past around 6-8 (probably more like 6, since Dimension Door is a really weak ability for a melee character) are either non-combat, and not very useful non-combat, or they are defensive abilities, or they are passive.

I think all of the passive stuff could be combined under something like:
Transcend Mortality (Ex) (from another monk-like homebrew) An Ascendant slowly begins to become far more than a mere mortal. Starting at 3rd level, you no longer need to eat or drink to survive. Furthermore, your unarmed attacks are treated as magical for the purposes of overcoming damage reduction.
Starting at 7th level, you no longer need to sleep in order to function properly. Furthermore, you gain DR 5/magic.
Starting at 11th level, you gain immunity to all forms of poison and to all diseases, including supernatural diseases. Furthermore, your unarmed attacks are treated as lawful for the purposes of overcoming damage reduction.
Starting at 15th level, you no longer need to breath in order to function properly. Furthermore, your damage reduction increases to 10/magic.
Starting at 19th level, you cease to age and do not die when your time is up. You still gain mental ability score increases but gain no further physical ability score decreases.
But I do agree that there is not enough attractive active stuff to get above 10th level.

Here is some extra combat abilities:
Scythe Strike
The character can use this ability once per round, but no more than class level per day. The character must declare she is using the scythe strike attack before making the attack roll (thus, a missed attack roll ruins the attempt). A foe struck by the character is forced to make a fortitude save (DC 15 + 1/2 class level + Wis modifier), in addition to receiving normal damage. If the saving throw fails, the attack is treated as if the character had automatically confirmed a x4 critical. Constructs, oozes, plants, undead, incorporeal creatures and creatures immune to critical hits cannot be affected by the scythe strike.

Reaper of Flesh
This supernatural ability allows the character to make a mighty spinning kick, whirling around so quickly that she resembles a mini-tornado, her feet spinning scythes.
The character can use the Reaper of Flesh once per day, and she must announce her intent before making her attack roll. Constructs, oozes, plants, undead, incorporeal creatures and creatures immune to critical hits cannot be affected. The character must perform the full attack action and make one melee attack at her full base attack bonus against each opponent within 5 feet. If the character strikes successfully and surrounding targets take damage from the blow, they die, unless a Fortitude saving throw is made (DC 15 + 1/2 class level + Wis modifier). Even if the saving throw is passed, the targets are knocked prone by the furious kick.
Only targets of lower level than the character are affected (or have less HD than the character's level).

Mind over Hand
Monk gains the ability to ignore the opponent's armor with his unarmed attacks. The monk can use this supernatural ability once per round, but no more than class levels per day.
The character must declare she is using the scythe strike attack before making the attack roll (thus, a missed attack roll ruins the attempt). Against 'Mind over Hand' attacks, the foe uses his touch AC.

Reverse Hand
The character can strike his target at the same instant his opponent strikes him. The monk can choose to make an immediate attack of opportunity against an opponent that makes a successful melee attack roll or melee touch attack against the monk, but the monk makes this attack at a -5 penalty to his base attack roll. The monk cannot make more attacks of opportunity than he is normally allowed in a round. The attack can only be used against an opponent the monk threatens.
Looks like a better karmic strike.

Empty Hand

Prerequisite: Improved Disarm.
The monk becomes an expert at relieving his opponents of their weapons. The monk's hands are treated as a Large weapon when the monk performs a disarm special attack. Furthermore, as a result of his 'Empty Hand' training, the monk gains a +4 bonus to his opposed roll to disarm his foe.

Dragon-Tail Slap
The monk gains the ability to send an opponent this is damaged by his unarmed attacks flying across the battlefield. The monk can use this supernatural ability once per round, but no more than once per class level per day. The character must declare she is using the Dragon-Tail Slap attack before making the attack roll (thus, a missed attack roll ruins the attempt). If a foe is struck by this attack, the monk automatically initiates a bull rush-like attack, except the attack modifies as follows.
The monk and his opponent make opposed Str checks. The monk is treated as if he were one size category larger than his actual size, for the purposes of determining his category-status to the opposed Str check. In addition, the monk automatically gains a +4 bonus from his training. The monk gets a +2 charge bonus if charging. The foe gets a +4 stability bonus if she has more than two legs or is otherwise exceptionally stable, as well as +4 bonus for each size-category she is above Medium-size, or a -4 penalty for each size-category she is below Medium-size.
If the monk beats his foe, she is knocked back 5 feet plus 1 foot for each point by which the monk exceeds the foe's check result.
Furthermore, the foe takes an additional amount of damage from the attack equal to the number of feet she is knocked back. The monk doesn't move when his foe is knocked back. The foe may provoke attacks of opportunity when he is knocked back (though not from the monk), but the monk is not subject to attacks of opportunity because he doesn't move (unlike a standard bull rush). If the monk fails the opposed check, he suffers no deleterious effect.


The class gains an arbitrarily large bonus to three skills, and then never does anything else with them, while still not allowing the modifiers to allow the monk to reach most epic DCs without some serious cheese.
True, they should be used as part of new combat options to be invented. This is partially covered by ToB maneuvers.

Also, another revision has a more simple way of wording of mechanics concerning unarmed attacks.
Ki Strike (Su): At 4th level, a monk’s unarmed attacks are empowered with ki. His unarmed attacks and attacks made with his special monk weapons are treated as lawful weapons for the purpose of dealing damage to creatures with damage reduction. Ki strike improves with the character’s monk level.
At 10th level, his unarmed attacks and attacks made with his special monk weapons are also treated as adamantine weapons for the purpose of dealing damage to creatures with damage reduction and bypassing hardness.
At 16th level, his unarmed attacks and attacks made with his special monk weapons are treated as silver and cold iron weapons for the purpose of dealing damage to creatures with damage reduction.

Unarmed Strike Enhancement (Su): A monk's unarmed strike improves as he gains higher levels. At 4th level and every four monk levels thereafter, the monk's unarmed strike gains a cumulative +1 enhancement bonus on attack rolls and damage rolls (+2 at 8th level, +3 at 12th level, +4 at 16th level, and +5 at 20th level).

At 6th level, a monk gains the ability to enhance his unarmed strike. He can add any one of the melee weapon special abilities that has an enhancement bonus value of +1, with the exception of the anarchic, throwing, and dancing special abilities.

At every four levels beyond 6th (10th, 14th, and 18th), the value of the enhancement a monk can add to his unarmed strike improves to +2, +3, and +4, respectively. A monk can choose any combination of melee weapon special abilities that does not exceed the total allowed by the monk’s level.

The weapon ability or abilities remain the same every time the monk attacks with his unarmed strike (unless he decides to reassign its abilities). A monk can reassign the ability or abilities he has added to his unarmed strike. To do so, he must first spend 8 hours in concentration. After that period, his unarmed strikes gains the new ability or abilities selected by the monk, replacing the previously selected ability or abilities.

A monk of 10th level can also choose from the list of ranged weapon special abilities with which to enchant his unarmed strikes, with the exception of the anarchic, returning, and distance special abilities.

Edit: I think it should be possible to combine all of the 4 sources I've got, a piece of ToB, a few scattered feats and old PrC features into 1 usable class that gradually rises in power and is well worthy of full 20 levels.

PS: OMG, that Tome Monk has some awesomely thought-out features.

jiriku
2011-02-20, 03:16 PM
To clarify: the revised monk is an improved monk class. It does the same things the original monk does, only better. It does not possess broad new suites of capability that the original monk did not have -- it simply corrects the monk's deficiencies. If you want to punch people with maneuvers, play an unarmed swordsage. If you want to punch people with ki powers or psionic powers, play the homebrew ki monks and psionic monks already present on this forum. If you want to play the classic monk but you want to *not suck*, this is the class for you.

paddyfool
2011-02-20, 03:18 PM
I don't think this class needs ToB manoevres. If you're going for that fix, you might as well just play a swordsage and call it a day. And the design goal was always "strong Tier 4".

Now, as for the skill bonus... what if the progression it followed wasn't so linear, but a little more exponential? Say, +5 at 3rd, +5 again at 6th, +10 at 9th & 12th, +15 at 15th and 18th. Same eventual total, more rewarding to follow all the way. (Although that threshold of needing a 15 to tumble past a single opponent being about its most powerful use is annoying). Alternatively or in addition, the obvious ability to add to those already under the epic skill uses of Tumble is to be able to move past opponents at full speed rather than half speed - charge double the base 15/25 DC, perhaps, (EDIT: ie a DC of 30 to move past an opponent at full speed, and 50 to move their square) while also doubling the penalty for each additional opponent you tumble past to 4?

unosarta
2011-02-20, 03:27 PM
To clarify: the revised monk is an improved monk class. It does the same things the original monk does, only better. It does not possess broad new suites of capability that the original monk did not have -- it simply corrects the monk's deficiencies. If you want to punch people with maneuvers, play an unarmed swordsage. If you want to punch people with ki powers or psionic powers, play the homebrew ki monks and psionic monks already present on this forum. If you want to play the classic monk but you want to *not suck*, this is the class for you.

Of course. I fully agree in this sense. However, you do not necessarily have to shoe-hole yourself into giving them the exact same class features, and not giving them any new ones. In fact, that logic really doesn't make very much sense, since you have already added some new class features.

What I was suggesting was that you add something to make combat interesting. ToB does this, but it isn't the only option. But it needs to happen, badly. Everything else is fantastic (besides maybe character roles). All you have to do is build off of the Monk fighting styles already presented in the SRD with Unearthed Arcana. They are completely mundane, no magic, no ToB, no Ki. Just martial artist. And, give them actual class features instead of feats. Make something out of it.

Hazzardevil
2011-02-20, 03:39 PM
I quite like the look of this and I'm glad you agree with me on how Monks shouldn't be a totally new class when fixed, just teh way they were with improved class features and a few more.

huyche
2011-02-20, 03:53 PM
off of the Monk fighting styles already presented in the SRD with Unearthed Arcana
What page is it on?


I don't think this class needs ToB manoevres. If you're going for that fix, you might as well just play a swordsage and call it a day. And the design goal was always "strong Tier 4".
see

Or better yet, create a pool of features like here for a fighting style, which can be picked over progressively. Scrap ToB maneuvers and add to the list of active abilities to choose from.
There are some nice feats too, along with a few half-assed PrC features that can be used.


Now, as for the skill bonus... what if the progression it followed wasn't so linear, but a little more exponential? Say, +5 at 3rd, +5 again at 6th, +10 at 9th & 12th, +15 at 15th and 18th. Same eventual total, more rewarding to follow all the way. (Although that threshold of needing a 15 to tumble past a single opponent being about its most powerful use is annoying). Alternatively or in addition, the obvious ability to add to those already under the epic skill uses of Tumble is to be able to move past opponents at full speed rather than half speed - charge double the base 15/25 DC, perhaps, (EDIT: ie a DC of 30 to move past an opponent at full speed, and 50 to move their square) while also doubling the penalty for each additional opponent you tumble past to 4?

Abundant Leap (Su): At 2nd level, a Monk's ability to jump is unbounded by his height. In addition, the DC for any jump check is divided by two.
Like this but for for climbing and tumbling too? Instead of generating ridiculous skill levels? Increased to division by, say, '4' somewhere higher on the levels.

@Hazzardevil:
IIRC, it were you who made me visit the link and check this revision, thanks.

unosarta
2011-02-20, 06:06 PM
What page is it on?

Dunno about the actual Unearthed Arcana, but here is a link to the SRD part; Linky. (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/classes/variantCharacterClasses.htm#monkVariantFightingSty les)

huyche
2011-02-20, 06:21 PM
Dunno about the actual Unearthed Arcana, but here is a link to the SRD part; Linky. (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/classes/variantCharacterClasses.htm#monkVariantFightingSty les)

Oh, thaaaaaat...

But it is so dull :(

I've got some kind of compilation based on those variants and a few more from some Dragon Magazine issues.
For example, this one (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=10405268&postcount=76) is from it.

There is also a hunting monk, a holy monk, martial monk, raging monk(lol), sidewinder monk, steadfast monk, vigilant monk, wild monk.

And a couple extra 'styles':
Kyokushinkai Karate
(tireless & almost unkillable)
(DR334 p89)
Skill Bonus: Survival
1st
lvl Feat: Endurance
2nd
lvl Feat: Toughness
6th
lvl Feat: Weapon Focus
(unarmed strike)
Concentration: 9 ranks.
Feat: Die Hard.
+6 hp.
Metered Style (perfect focus on combat patterns)
(DR337 p97)
Skill Bonus: Concentration
1st
lvl Feat: Defensive Metered Foot
2nd
lvl Feat: Offensive Metered Foot
6th
lvl Feat: Toughness
Concentration: 9 ranks.
Skill Focus(any Strength-based
–or– Dexterity-based skill).
You may ‘Take 10’ on any Strength-based or Dexterity-
based skill check, even if distraction would normally not all
you to do so.
Wing Chun Kuen (aware of his/her surroundings and how to use them)
(DR334 p89)
Skill Bonus: Listen
1st
lvl Feat: Combat Reflexes
2nd
lvl Feat: Cleave
6th
lvl Feat: Weapon Critical
(unarmed strike)
Listen: 9 ranks.
Feat: Improved Initiative.
When you enter combat and are not surprised, gain your
Wisdom modifier (if any) as a bonus to your Initiative
check.
Wushu (smart tacticians who attack in unexpected directions)
(DR334 p89)
Skill Bonus: Tumble
1st
lvl Feat: Improved Initiative
2nd
lvl Feat: Power Attack
6th
lvl Feat: Improved Feint
Bluff: 4 ranks.
Sense Motive: 9 ranks.
When you make a Bluff check in order to Feint in combat,
gain ˝ Monk levels as a bonus.

Plus 5 martial arts schools as boring and random. Basically, there are some Ability and feat prerequisites, you gain a small bonus for qualifying for them.
Then the 1st level mastery + higher ability, feat and skill ranks to qualify for a bit better bonus.

unosarta
2011-02-20, 06:33 PM
Exactly. Except, instead of just feats and skill bonuses and minor things, give them actual class abilities, and have them be at 8th, 11th, 14th, 17th, and 20th level. So, like, for yongchunquan, which you had up there, you could have some extra options for strikes and a combination attack defense (probably involving AoOs). Being able to relax out of grapples (via general relaxation, which is a strong theme of yongchun), etc.

Lix Lorn
2011-02-20, 08:47 PM
I may have to be building an epic monk soon, so... have a present. :smallamused:

{table=head]Level|Special|Flurry (std)| Flurry (full)| Unarmed| AC| Speed
20|Ki Strike +5, Perfect Self, Slow Fall Any Distance|+15/+15/+15|+15/+15/+15/+10/+5|6d6|+5|60ft
21|Epic Flurry|+16/+16/+16/+16|+16/+16/+16/+16/+11/+6|6d6|+5|70ft
22||+16/+16/+16/+16|+16/+16/+16/+16/+11/+6|6d6|+5|70ft
23|Bonus Feat|+17/+17/+17/+17|+17/+17/+17/+17/+12/+7|6d6|+5|70ft
24|Ki Strike +6|+17/+17/+17/+17|+17/+17/+17/+17/+12/+7|8d6|+6|80ft
25||+18/+18/+18/+18|+18/+18/+18/+18/+13/+8|8d6|+6|80ft
26|Bonus Feat|+18/+18/+18/+18|+18/+18/+18/+18/+13/+8|8d6|+6|80ft
27||+19/+19/+19/+19|+19/+19/+19/+19/+14/+9|8d6|+6|90ft
28|Ki Strike +7|+19/+19/+19/+19|+19/+19/+19/+19/+14/+9|10d6|+7|90ft
29|Bonus Feat|+20/+20/+20/+20|+20/+20/+20/+20/+15/+10|10d6|+7|90ft
30|Eternal Body|+20/+20/+20/+20|+20/+20/+20/+20/+15/+10|10d6|+7|100ft
31||+21/+21/+21/+21/+21|+21/+21/+21/+21/+21/+16/+11|10d6|+7|+100[/table]

Wholeness of Body, Diamond Soul, Quivering Palm, Empty Step, Empty Body, Moment of Perfection: These abilities continue to progress using your full monk Level.

Epic Flurry: At 21st level, you gain a third additional attack when using your flurry ability.

Another additional attack is gained at each tenth level after; 31st, 41st, etc.

(Note that the Flurry statistics given in the table include Epic Attack Bonus)

Unarmed Damage: Continues to increase, as seen in the table. Due to lack of support for increasing damage by size past, they increase damage by 2d6 at 24th level, and another 2d6 each fourth level thereafter; 28th, 32nd, etc.

AC Bonus: Continues to increase, as seen in the table. Goes up by one at 24th, and another at 28th and each fourth level thereafter; 32nd, 35th, etc.

Dance With The Elements: Continues to increase, as seen in the table. Goes up by ten at 21st, then another ten at 24th, and another ten at each third level thereafter; 27th, 30th, etc.

Ki Strike: Continues to increase, as seen in the table. Goes up by one at 24th, and another at 28th, and another one at each fourth level thereafter; 32nd, 36th, etc.

Bonus Feats: At twenty third level and each third level therafter, an Epic Monk gains a bonus feat. This may be any other monk bonus feat he did not previously choose, any feat with those as a prerequisite, or a feat from the following list: Armor Skin, Blinding Speed, Damage Reduction, Energy Resistance, Epic Prowess, Epic Speed, Epic Toughness, Exceptional Deflection, Fast Healing, Improved Combat Reflexes, Improved Ki Strike, Improved Spell Resistance, Improved Stunning Fist, Infinite Deflection, Keen Strike, Legendary Climber, Legendary Wrestler, Reflect Arrows, Righteous Strike, Self-Concealment, Shattering Strike, Vorpal Strike.
Other feats may be added to this list at GM discretion.

The Monk does not need to meet the prerequisites for Monk bonus feats, but otherwise must meet all prerequisites.

Eternal Body: A Monk of 30th level does not age at all. They can still be killed, but will never die of any effect related to age or time.

Epic Ki Strike

Prerequisites: Ki Strike +6, Improved Ki Strike, 21st level in Monk
Benefit: You may gain a number of applicable abilites from the table in Improved Ki Strike which, if applied to a weapon, would give it special abilites with a value of up to one less than your total Ki Strike. In addition, you may add Acidic/Fiery/Icy/Lightning Blast to the list of applicable abilities. Rangers may also add Dread, keyed to one of their favoured enemies.

jiriku
2011-02-21, 01:35 PM
I like presents...especially epic presents. Shiny!

Lix Lorn
2011-02-21, 01:46 PM
Glad you like it. :)
I worry about how much damage I enable you to do with that, but... damage is pretty useless PRE-Epic from what I here, so it should be fine.
Besides, smooshing dragons in a round of combat pretty much defines epic.

jiriku
2011-02-21, 01:53 PM
We've already established that you're an enabler. :smalltongue: I was actually thinking the damage was fairly conservative. I've never played at epic levels, but given the kinds of damage routinely tossed around at high-teen levels, I'm thinking that free Epic Toughness on the dead levels (or even every level!) might not be out of line for martial characters.

Barbarian MD
2011-02-21, 01:53 PM
This might give some inspiration: it's the Penny Dreadful Monk:
https://docs.google.com/View?docid=0AYdLcxsM7Nx0ZGc2NzhibjNfMjc4ZGMzYzlqZ2 0&authkey=CLGemYEO&hl=en

Lix Lorn
2011-02-24, 02:51 PM
We've already established that you're an enabler. :smalltongue: I was actually thinking the damage was fairly conservative. I've never played at epic levels, but given the kinds of damage routinely tossed around at high-teen levels, I'm thinking that free Epic Toughness on the dead levels (or even every level!) might not be out of line for martial characters.
Well, the only tables for damage-by-size I could find that went past 8d6 went 8d6, 12d6 and then stopped.
I'm a helper! [/fighter]
I'm participating! [/elan]
When in doubt, use BOTH quotes.
Sorry for double post, but Noticed something else: The Design Notes under AC Bonus still reference Empty Body rather than Empty Mind.

Also, does TWF work with monks? Please say yes. I mean, it's not like it's even that powerful...

Also Wholeness of Body, as written, doesn't say what action it is to heal, whether it's touch range, and, if you didn't read the Design Notes, doesn't actually say you can use it on someone else.

userpay
2011-02-24, 04:27 PM
Besides, smooshing dragons in a round of combat pretty much defines epic.

Not that I've had a chance to do this but imagine doing this with a halfling... one of the many reasons I love this class is making a halfling monk (dear god what if with a pixie!?). I've also made a goliath monk thats to be based around rock throwing/throwing enemies but unfortunately that game isn't progressing particularly fast.

Looking forward to further work on this revision.

Lix Lorn
2011-02-24, 04:38 PM
I'm planning a Monk 40//Paladin 20/OtherThingsThatGrantMoreAttacks 20
Should be fun. (grins)

(This is why I REALLY want TWF to work. I mean, it's just one attack per feat. Pleeeeeease?)

jiriku
2011-02-24, 05:57 PM
I've added verbage clarifying the use of Unarmed Strike and Wholeness of Body. Good stuff, keep it coming!



Here is the houseruled TWF variant feat that has been in use in my campaign for the past year. Extensive playtesting has shown it to be not at all unbalanced...which says something about the existing TWF feats.


TWO-WEAPON FIGHTING [Fighter, General, Ranger]
You fight effectively with a weapon in each hand, and you can make extra attacks each round with the second weapon.
Prerequisite: Dex 15
Benefit: Your penalties on attack rolls for fighting with two weapons are reduced. The penalty for your primary hand lesses by two and the one for your off hand lessens by 6. If your off hand weapon is a light weapon, reduce the penalties for both weapons by an additional 2.

You gain an additional attack at your highest base attack bonus with the offhand weapon. You gain additional attacks with the offhand weapon at progressively lower attack bonuses whenever your base attack bonus grants you additional attacks with your primary weapon.
As the core rules specify that a monk's unarmed strike counts as a weapon whenever she wants it to, in my mind this explicitly allows the use of TWF with unarmed strikes. TWF would also be compatible with flurry of blows. Attack all you like.

By way of contrast, it's entirely possible to build an archivist or wizard capable of making 20+ attacks per round by level 20 without the use of any homebrew. And with better attack and damage bonuses than a monk could ever hope to obtain. What's good for the goose is good for the gander.

Lix Lorn
2011-02-24, 06:15 PM
(evil giggles)
I am going to have alot of attacks.

unosarta
2011-02-24, 06:25 PM
By way of contrast, it's entirely possible to build an archivist or wizard capable of making 20+ attacks per round by level 20 without the use of any homebrew. And with better attack and damage bonuses than a monk could ever hope to obtain. What's good for the goose is good for the gander.

Also, that same Archivist or Wizard could easily go BFC the next day, Damage the day after that, Healing with the right feat, and then back to ridiculous attacks.

jiriku
2011-02-24, 06:39 PM
Make sure you have the ability to acquire an unreasonably large number of natural weapons. That's the best way to get extra attacks once you've maxed out your TWF/flurry of blows potential. There's considerable synergy between monk/druid (wildshape), monk/barbarian/bear warrior, or monk (bear rage)/any class that can cast polymorph (hydra fun).

It's only kind of tangentially related to the topic at hand, but the Summoner in my sig can also manage a pretty impressive number of natural attacks by attuning to the right kind of planar companion. Plus you get the companion and anything else you summon, which gives "you" a heck of a lot of attacks indeed.

I'm also working on an arcane class called the Shapeshifter, which is essentially an entire class built around the alter self/polymorph/shapechange line. The shapeshifter will be able to pretty easily manifest 8+ natural weapons by upper levels. Unfortunately I'm really struggling to think up interesting/useful class features, so it's kind of languishing incomplete ATM.


P.S. You're very kind to your DM. In a level 40 gestalt game, I'd play an archivist/cleric/dweomerkeeper//illusionist/shadowcraft mage/incantatrix, and basically just tell the DM how the game is gonna be. :smallbiggrin:

Lix Lorn
2011-02-24, 06:58 PM
But natural attacks don't do massive monk unarmed damage. xD

(And I'm not cruel. :P)

jiriku
2011-02-24, 07:27 PM
You're not cruel, but you do misbehave. :smalltongue:

If you are a bear (or something even meaner), ALL attacks do impressive damage, including unarmed attacks. One of my favorite tank/DPS builds, which you can do quite well with this monk, is the Kung-Fu Panda build: barbarian/bear warrior/fist of the forest/monk. You're getting Dex, Wis, and Con to AC, Str and Wis to hit and damage, flurry of blows, excellent saves, unarmed strike, three natural weapons, pounce, improved trip, and, hey, you're a BEAR!

Lix Lorn
2011-02-24, 07:33 PM
We aim to misbehave. :smallamused:

But at level 40, my unarmed attacks do about 20d6+Str+Wis. A claw attack does what, 2d6+Str+Wis? XD

jiriku
2011-02-24, 07:57 PM
At level 40, your opponents are immune to damage and have Armor Class: No and a hundred thousand hit points anyway. What do you care how much damage you deal? :smallbiggrin:

TechnOkami
2011-02-24, 08:14 PM
Perfect Self (Ex): At 20th level, a monk becomes a magical creature and her type changes to outsider. When targeted by spells and magical effects that consider her type, she may choose whether to be considered an outsider or a member of her former type, whichever is most advantageous. Additionally, the monk gains damage reduction 15/lawful. Unlike other outsiders, the monk can still be brought back from the dead as if she were a member of her previous creature type.

...shouldn't this be chaotic just for the lawful example monk?

Also: Any reason why it isn't full BAB?

Lix Lorn
2011-02-24, 08:15 PM
At level 40, your opponents are immune to damage and have Armor Class: No and a hundred thousand hit points anyway. What do you care how much damage you deal? :smallbiggrin:
DXD I hope not.

Sindri
2011-02-24, 08:18 PM
I like it, aside from a couple quibbles, and would like to see playtesting.
1) Needs full BAB. There isn't any other front-liner that lacks it, it won't increase your to-hit by much, and the "flurry" of blows as is is hardly better than a normal fighter, and worse than TWF.
2) Why is the DR /Lawful? Demons and Devils can be harmed by Good, angels by Evil, Formians by Chaos, etc. because that's the opposite of what they are, and it disrupts them. By that logic, a monk with DR/Law would have defenses based on pure chaos.

jiriku
2011-02-24, 08:26 PM
1) The monk is not a front-liner. The revised monk is intended to function as a melee-oriented dps skirmisher and skillmonkey, much like a rogue, ranger or scout (but without the wilderness focus of the latter two classes). It should also be able to step into other roles such as party face or infiltrator.

2) Good point on the damage reduction. I'll flip it.

T.G. Oskar
2011-02-24, 09:14 PM
1) The monk is not a front-liner. The revised monk is intended to function as a melee-oriented dps skirmisher and skillmonkey, much like a rogue, ranger or scout (but without the wilderness focus of the latter two classes). It should also be able to step into other roles such as party face or infiltrator.

A mention of full BAB in two posts, almost consecutively? Darn, its on your first post, jiriku, when they'll get it?

In any case, I'd like to point something interesting because there seems to be a mild conflict between your intention of making the Monk a skirmisher and the bonus feats, which include stuff like Improved Grapple, Improved Disarm and Improved Trip, which are generally dependant on good BAB (specially Imp. Grapple, which needs a superb BAB). Since the role is to keep it as a skirmisher, having those options open might be a bit troubling for a character who wishes to make a grappler out of a monk (not odd, since you get increased unarmed strike damage to add to the grapple attempts), or a tripper (making the Monk slightly dependant on Strength; Empty Strike helps only a bit on 3rd level but not to the degree of other classes). Generally that's a strong point behind giving full BAB to a Monk, because the idea of making trippers or grapplers out of the chassis should be an option.

Having said that; there's no alternate option for those few characters who might want to make a more mobile yet still strong grappler or tripper, and that might make some utility out of the extra BAB to succeed on a grapple at least? Pathfinder Monk has a similar option you might just "borrow" to make Monks insane grapplers in any case someone might use the class without a particular focus in skirmishing. Maybe you can make it part of Empty Strike if you desire; it's an apparently minor +5 bonus at level 20, but with good Wisdom and other modifiers you can do a quite surprising grapple during the way.

Also, minor nitpick, but they are still "unproficient" with unarmed strikes. Just mentioning.

ForzaFiori
2011-02-24, 09:56 PM
I've been using the monk in a campaign, as a front-line grappler. Granted, Part of what lets me go toe to toe is the fact that it's gestalt with a psion (empathetic feedback is awesome) but the BAB is perfectly fine as is. I have a +13/+13 flurry at lv 7, and do 1d8+2d6+9. Granted, it's a high power game, but the enemies are fairly tough, and I've managed to grapple, disarm, or flurry for decent damage pretty much at will. Even disarmed a large opponent. that might be due to my DM getting rid of the -4 penalty a sai has to disarm though. +20 disarm total.

jiriku
2011-02-24, 11:02 PM
These are important concerns, and good things to hear. In part, I think a lot of the skepticism is probably due to my explaining it poorly. There's a lot of text in those first three posts, and sometimes important points are buried in unlikely places. I promise at that some undefined point in the future I'll go back and reorganize the presentation (again) to make the structure and function more obvious.

To respond to several concerns, in order of ease of explanation:

Proficiency with unarmed strikes: Needing "proficiency" with a body part is really quite silly. That's all I have to say about that.

Does the monk need full base attack? I like numbers. Let's have some.


Compare number of attacks:

Full base attack = 4 attacks per round by level 20, or 8 with full TWF
Medium base attack + Greater Flurry = 5 attacks per round by level 20, or 8 with full TWF


Compare attack progressions:

Lvl20 warblade or fighter with Str 20, Dex 20, Wis 10
Normal: +25/+20/+15/+10
TWF: +23/+23/+18/+18/+13/+13/+8/+8
Lvl20 monk with Str 10, Dex 20, Wis 20
Normal: +25/+25/+25/+20/+15
TWF: +23/+23/+23/+23/+18/+18/+13/+13

Compare damage progressions:

Lvl20 warblade or fighter with Str 20, Dex 20, Wis 10, using two-handed sword (or longsword and shortsword)
Normal: 2d6+7 (x4) (avg. 56)
TWF: 1d8+5 (x4) and 1d6+2 (x4) (avg. 60)
Lvl20 monk with Str 10, Dex 20, Wis 20, using unarmed strikes
Normal 6d6+10 (x5) (avg. 105)
TWF 6d6+10 (x8) (avg. 198)


Now, feats and gear and class features can change all this, but I think at a minimum these numbers should demonstrate that the monk suffers no disparity. Further, like a martial adept or duskblade, the monk retains most of his offensive capability when fighting on the move.

What about grappling, tripping, and disarming?

Did I mention I like numbers? Let's have some more.


Same martial character, same monk; let's assume they both have Improved Grapple, Improved Trip, and Improved Disarm, since these feats just make sense for anyone who intends to do that stuff.

Martialist grapples: +29
Martialist trips: +9
Martialist disarms: +29 (plus mods for weapon)
Monk grapples: +29
Monk trips: +14
Monk disarms: +29 (plus mods for weapon)


Again, feats, gear, and class features can change this up, but it looks to me as if the monk has rough parity here. He grapples just as well, trips a bit better, and probably disarms a bit worse, since other classes have access to better disarming weapons.

Frankly, full base attack bonus is overhyped. It is an extra attack at -15 and a +5 bonus on attacks and a few combat maneuvers. I have not given the monk full base attack; I've given him something different, but just as good. Roll with it. :smallsmile:

If you play with it, you'll find that Empty Strike helps the monk in a lot of indirect ways. For example:


The warblade can improve his combat effectiveness by buying up his Strength: +6 Strength costs 36k gold, and gives +3 to hit and either +1.5, +3, or +4.5 damage. He also gets +3 grapple, +3 trip, and +3 disarm.

The monk can buy +4 Dex and +4 Wis for 32k, and receives +4 to hit, +4 damage, +4 grapple, +4 trip, and +4 disarm (he gets more for less). Plus, build synergies grant him +4 AC, +2 Init, +2 Ref save, and +2 Will save as well. And he's still got 4k in the bank.

T.G. Oskar
2011-02-25, 03:59 AM
While the numbers are all nice and good, there's one slight problem I see: dual stat synergy. Specifically, to compete, the sum of your Wisdom and the main stat must be equal or higher than that of the martial character's Strength stat.

To boot: you're assuming something reasonable in terms of potential stats, but while for another martial character only Strength is important, for a Monk using Empty Strike both Strength (or Dexterity) AND Wisdom is important, just to keep up. Now, that doesn't mean that will reduce the effectiveness of a multi-hit increased damage skirmisher, but it does make a dent on grapple because it's easier to skyrocket one score than both (inversely, and what I really see is the advantage, is that it makes you vulnerable to one stat).

So, let's assume that 20 STR is reduced to...say, 12 STR because of a Ray of Enfeeblement (a 1st level spell!). Net loss is 4 points to attack rolls, damage rolls and grapple/disarm/trip checks. You still have at least 5 points (or perhaps less than that, basically you start with a +1 over medium BAB and you get an increase every 4-5 levels). The loss will be a bit more important on disarm and trip, but you still can defend on sheer attack power and grapple.

Same thing on Monk, except this time is either Strength or Wisdom. You lose 8 points of either, and since the net loss would be the same on both sides, the Monk remains competitive. However, and this is a big one: if you get hit on both Dex and Wisdom, you get in trouble. You could argue it's the same for a Fighter that gets a negative level, but unfortunately it's an equal loss for both sides. So, if you get hurt on both sides, you end up losing more because you lose all those stats. Now, very few things affect Wisdom but there are lots of things that affect Dexterity, so you need to be careful about that one. However, while a martial character would only need to focus on two stats (Strength and Constitution, maybe Dexterity if you want to go with TWF), a Monk needs three stats to keep up (fortunately one of those is Dexterity, but you still need Wisdom and Constitution to keep up). What's more, you depend on two stats to be successful while a TWF character needs only one stat and the requisites for another.

But, that goes even further. TWF and Strength usually don't mix; TWF + Sneak Attack do mix, though. Or TWF + lots of extra damage (which is one of the ways you can play the Monk). But change the tactics completely, and you'll see a big difference; for example, how does a character that depends on two stats run against, say, a PA-using character, which only needs Strength to maximize it's capabilities? There are several ways to pretty much ignore AC, and one hit deals quite a bit of damage.

But damage isn't the thing; you've stated that the intention is "get a lot of hits while remaining mobile, and rely on two stats and increased fist damage to compensate". In that sense, it's not built badly; since you're applying a bit more static damage than dynamic damage on each hit, you basically compensate for whatever loss in attack bonus while undergoing TWF (same as how the huge damage gain by wielding a 2-handed weapon while using PA offsets the loss of attack bonus when using the feat). The thing is grappling, where every point counts. Tripping is special: you need a way to provoke attacks of opportunity so you might need a good Dex for that, which means either going Robilar's Gambit/Karmic Strike or using a reach weapon (such as the spiked chain), so it's quite expected that the Monk will be at least competitive until someone uses a guisarme or racks up the Tumble checks. Disarming is pretty much pointless, but the bonuses granted by weapons also count. Grapple, though, is the monster. You don't need to beat any other class on grappling; you need to beat the monsters on grappling, and that means compensating for being Large or larger, extra limbs and tactics such as improved grab. In that sense, every point counts, and those 5 points of non-existent BAB might be the difference between evading (or grappling) a monster and failing (on both accounts) to do so. Feats and abilities may make the Monk work it out, but the dependance on two ability scores might not be that good. And even then, the idea is not to make the Monk "just good"; the idea is to make it better. Consider that they get Improved Grapple, Improved Disarm and Improved Trip for free; unless that's something on my behalf, I think the devs had the idea that the monk would be as good, if not better, than the other martial characters at grappling, disarming or tripping (which, of course, doesn't happen; for what it's worth, they also suck on the other combat maneuvers, but YMMV on that one). Empty Strike, on that regard, introduces an artificial balance to the system which allows stacking two stats to compensate for the loss of BAB in order to use these abilities, which is my peeve; you have two chances to get hit on those scores and get your artificial benefit reduced to below effectiveness, causing you to turn slightly more dependent on boosts to ability scores in order to make that worthwhile.

Example: remember how by having 32,000 GP you can add a +4 to both Dex and Wisdom? Certainly that means you add at least two points on Dexterity and Wisdom when leveling up; a Strength-dependent character needs only to add his bonuses to Strength, so it basically balances up until you bypass Epic, but then again going epic to be better than the martial characters on those kinds of builds is kinda preposterous. In that regard, while still a bit artificial, the solution presented by the Pathfinder books makes slightly more sense; you're equalizing all factors, so that when everything is set and done, the Monk will have a better default score on those abilities than, say, the Fighter or the Warblade. That makes the Monk more attractive than a Fighter or Warblade in terms of making grapple builds (and with the increase in unarmed strike damage, perhaps doubly so), since the latter have increased feats and boosts that increase damage to compensate for the raw increase in dynamic damage from the increase to unarmed strikes.

jiriku
2011-02-25, 12:11 PM
A lengthy response! I'll try to address the salient points. I actually put rather a lot of thought into the new monk class features, so woot! I get to talk shop.


...it's easier to skyrocket one score than both...

I would contest this. Both the point-buy rules and the costs for stat-enhancing items force you to pay geometrically more for bigger numbers. Stacking restrictions make it harder to apply multiple buffs to a single stat than to apply multiple buffs to multiple stats. It's actually easier to buff multiple stats, both from an opportunity-cost perspective (cheaper items and better point buy ratios) and from a time investment perspective (less need to search multiple books looking for stuff that grants untyped stat boosts or boosts with obscure descriptors).


[A multiple-stat-dependent character has more stats to defend]

This is true, but a multiple-stat-dependent character is also harder to debilitate completely. He can get clobbered in one stat without getting totally hosed; this is the concept of distributed risk, or "don't put all your eggs in one basket". The monk will perform more reliably in the face of debuffing - he'll tend to be consistently debuffed a little bit, instead of being intermittently unaffected and intermittently made completely useless.

Additionally, consider the total package. A monk has several built-in features that make him more difficult to target and affect with debuffs, such as Empty Strike (allowing you to switch between Strength and Dex if one gets badly depleted), Improved Evasion, a high touch AC, a mobile combat style (less likely to be the recipient of full attacks), and swift etherealness. I am cognizant of the fact that the monk has much to defend, and I provide him with a variety of defensive tools.


A martial character would only need...Strength and Constitution, maybe Dexterity if you want to go with TWF), a Monk needs three stats to keep up (fortunately one of those is Dexterity, but you still need Wisdom and Constitution to keep up). What's more, you depend on two stats to be successful while a TWF character needs only one stat and the requisites for another.

This analysis is close but I have a quibble. It's a small quibble. This is how I see it:

Stock warblade: +Str, +Con, +1/2 Int
Stock monk: +Dex, +1/2 Con, +Wis
Stock TWF warblade: +Str, +Dex, +Con, +1/2 Int
Stock TWF ranger: +Str, +Dex, +1/2 Con, +1/2 Wis
Stock TWF monk: +Dex, +1/2 Con, +Wis

Why does the monk need less Con? He's a striker, like the ranger, not a front-liner. And as you can see, he's no more MAD than any other martial character.


And even then, the idea is not to make the Monk "just good"; the idea is to make it better.

Actually, the idea is not to make the monk "better"; the idea is to make it just good.


remember how by having 32,000 GP you can add a +4 to both Dex and Wisdom? Certainly that means you add at least two points on Dexterity and Wisdom when leveling up; a Strength-dependent character needs only to add his bonuses to Strength, so it basically balances up until you bypass Epic

Whoa there, tiger. I've shown that +4 Dex and +4 Wis on a monk is superior to +6 Str on a warblade while costing less. If you want to bring ability advancement through leveling into play, +2 Dex and +2 Wis from monk leveling is also superior to +4 Strength from warblade leveling. Plainly put, the monk gets a dramatically higher return from stat investment than other martial classes, and his MAD simply multiplies this benefit by making it dirt cheap to buy up his stats.


Empty Strike, on that regard, introduces an artificial balance to the system which allows stacking two stats to compensate for the loss of BAB in order to use these abilities, which is my peeve....

I prefer the term "innovative, refreshing new mechanic" over "artificial balance". :smallsmile:

I appreciate that you love you some full base attack, but the monk is extremely mechanically effective as-is. Perhaps you could set your peeve aside and consider approaching the class in a more flexible, open-minded manner. You might discover that Empty Strike and its supporting features create the opportunity for many new, enjoyable builds and combos.

Castiel
2011-03-07, 04:10 PM
I know this is slightly irrelevent to the conversation you're having at the moment about full BAB (which I think is fine as is. Maybe one solution would be to use class level as BAB for flurry of blows? make everyone happy?), but I had an idea that might help the skirmishy aspect of the class, and encourage the player to keep moving.

when he gets abundant step at 8th level, maybe give him an alternate ability thats something like:

Quickstep: whenever you move 10 ft in one round you gain 20% concealment, as if under the effects of the blur spell.

Then, this could upgrade at 13th level instead of gaining empty step. Maybe give him displacement instead of blur?

This would make sure he keeps moving, especially as a tie in with the skirmish ACF.

just an idea, but by the way thank you so much. This makes me glad that I've kept with monks. and thanks for the esoteric weapon feat as well- who says I can't play the wandering swordsman?

EDIT: Question about the skirmish ACF. Do your unarmed strikes still deal 1d6 damage? because if not that makes your ki strike must less useful. Maybe clarify that a little in the ability, because as I understand it, you gain no bonuses to damage (so thats 1d4, still lethal though because of the feat), and instead gain 1d6 skirmish at first level.

jiriku
2011-03-07, 04:32 PM
A monk with the skirmish ACF does not receive any increase in unarmed damage, although he can buy himself better damage with the Superior Unarmed Strike feat.

So, for example, a level 1 skirmishing monk would deal 1d3+1d6 damage with an unarmed strike.

Castiel
2011-03-07, 05:53 PM
gotcha. Thanks for that, but taking that feat would raise unarmed damage to 1d6?

jiriku
2011-03-07, 06:30 PM
It scales with level, anywhere from 1d4 to 2d6. You can find it in the Tome of Battle, p33.

Jade Dragon
2011-03-17, 04:29 PM
I love this revision. Now for some comments.

IMO, sense the void is actually more iconic to the monk than slow fall, as it gives the image of the blindfolded martial arts master.

Now on to pros and cons.

Pros: pretty much everything, dance with the elements is awesome, and better unarmed strike damage and standard action flurry of blows are just icing on the cake.

Cons: 3/4 BAB. I fully believe the monk should get full BAB.

unosarta
2011-03-17, 05:16 PM
Cons: 3/4 BAB. I fully believe the monk should get full BAB.

Jiriku has already covered this earlier in the thread; I honestly have to agree with him, the full BAB is kind of unnecessary in this class.

Jade Dragon
2011-03-17, 05:33 PM
Jiriku has already covered this earlier in the thread; I honestly have to agree with him, the full BAB is kind of unnecessary in this class.

Mm, no. I think 6 skill ranks per level and full BAB. Because they don't get attack bonuses from magic weapons.

unosarta
2011-03-17, 05:39 PM
Mm, no. I think 6 skill ranks per level and full BAB. Because they don't get attack bonuses from magic weapons.

You should look at his numbers. They also gain Wisdom to hit, as well as Dexterity, and that pretty much covers (and maybe then some) the attack bonus. Also, it is generally easier to boost two stats to high levels than one.

Six skill points per level would be going against the core idea behind the class, which is a minor skirmisher/DPS, and a skillmonkey.

Lix Lorn
2011-03-17, 05:40 PM
Because they don't get attack bonuses from magic weapons.
Ki Strike and Empty Strike say hi. :smalltongue:

jiriku
2011-03-17, 11:17 PM
Ki Strike and Empty Strike say hi. :smalltongue:

Bwahahaha! Exactly! Thanks for the compliments and feedback on the class, Swiftmongoose. You'll find that ki strike includes enhancement bonuses to hit and damage, and that the Improved Ki Strike feat upgrades it further. Moreover, the revised feat support for the monk offers considerably more offensive potential than you're used to seeing in a monk, and the monk's accuracy is further improved because he does not need Power Attack to deal impressive melee damage.

I promise that another update to the monk is still forthcoming, this one focusing on abilities for higher-level play. I'm just...working some mad stupid hours right now, hip-deep in Excel and PowerPoint, building business presentations for executives who don't understand numbers as well as they think they do. BUT, new monk stuff is in the pipeline.

Currently, my play group is playtesting a revised monk variant with 10 skill points per level and the decisive strike ACF (which combines very with with Spring Attack) in a group with a swordsage, daring outlaw, and a variant warlock. In the Tomb of Horrors. :smallamused: With the original Gygax traps. :smallamused::smallamused: And me, a rabid optimizer DM who actually tapes a little skull to his monitor for each PC kill he gets. :smallamused::smallamused::smallamused:

So far the monk has performed quite well, neither dragging his compatriots down nor overshadowing them.

Welknair
2011-03-17, 11:47 PM
Amazing. I'm considering stating that this is now the version of Monk used in my campaign. Nice work. Actually makes one worth playing. Kudos.

Oh, so does the Monk's belt give a corresponding increase in the other acrobatic skills, since it would be boosting Dance with Elements instead of just plane movespeed? Or does it just boost the speed? Apologies if this has been covered previously.

jiriku
2011-03-18, 04:23 PM
Thanks!

The monk's belt (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/magicItems/wondrousItems.htm#beltMonks) doesn't improved speed at all. Perhaps you were thinking of a different item?

Welknair
2011-03-18, 04:34 PM
Thanks!

The monk's belt (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/magicItems/wondrousItems.htm#beltMonks) doesn't improved speed at all. Perhaps you were thinking of a different item?

Crud, you're right. Man, what item was I thinking of? Perhaps it was in the MIC? :smallconfused:

Nevermind. Excellent work. It actually makes playing a Monk fun, as opposed to always being some Martial Adept.

jiriku
2011-03-18, 04:46 PM
I've considered a bit, and you know, at some point, you have to give the audience what they want. I've added a Martial Monk variant in the fourth post (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=8357958&postcount=3). The martial monk has...(drumroll)...a full base attack bonus! It sacrifices a few other things for it, so the variant has a trade-off and is not a straight upgrade. However, it should fill the need for players who like the revised monk but want to see a full base attack bonus on the chart.

Jade Dragon
2011-03-18, 07:25 PM
Ki Strike and Empty Strike say hi. :smalltongue:

... I think I deserved that, as it's been months since I looked this through (found it before I joined).

Even so, I clearly remember dance with the elements, it's awesome.

I still think sense the void is more iconic than slow fall, as nothing comes to mind when I think of slow fall, but the blindfolded martial artist comes to mind when I think of sense the void.

And I suppose the 3/4 BAB is slightly better than the full BAB one.

Heidigger
2011-04-01, 05:01 PM
Hello, I'm the test MONKey in jiriku's campaign. How ya doing?

I've been radically enjoying the abilities of this monk, and the fact that I have been extremely successful with the large skill point pool and the combat features. The skill monkey part has allowed us to continue forward without our rogue at some points, and combined with the warlock we can unlock, disarm, or blow up anything in our way.

Also, I have taken the ACF Decisive Strike with Superior Unarmed Strike, Snap Kick, and a Monk's Belt. The result is that at level 9 I have a modest +15 to attack (+13 with Snap Kick) and if I hit with both Decisive Strike and Snap Kick I deal 16d6+36 damage. The ability to pull this off with the Spring Attack and a 60ft move speed has allowed me to be incredibly effective in combat. Oh, and I can pull off a trip attack every round too since Improved Trip was one of the built in bonus feat options. Oh yeah, and I have Magic, Adamantine, and Alchemical Silver Ki Strikes. It's beautiful... *sniff*

The result has been the utter destruction of any and all traps, the destruction of multiple enemies with little to no loss of resources or HP, and some really fun cinematics in my mind of monk awesomeness.

Now if I can just get rid of this blasted levitation trap effect I'll be really happy. Bloody Gygax, God rest his zombie bones.

Newt
2011-04-04, 02:33 PM
@Jiriku

A question, what does the second AC bonus count as?

Players Guide gives the Wis as untyped (doesn't mention so call it untyped), second one you give here just says can't wear armor. So can you wear Bracers of Armor or Impervious Vestment or is it limited to stats and class, for example.

Kind of annoying when your class feature is only a 6000gp item buy. :P Like the speed bonus. -.- Still good fun of course, just less straight power.

@Heidigger
Did you use Snap Kick with Decisive Strike before level 9? -4 to attack didn't seem like it would work all that well when I was going over the possibilities. And will you be grabbing the other two Spring Attack feats? Not that you'd need them, 3 attacks at near full BAB and equiv to 4 attacks damage is fine really but you know, more damage is like more fire or negative energy. Must.. Have.. And are you using variant Dodge feats or just vanilla? I make characters, don't game. Not many people I know are interested in gaming so lack a chance to try them out.



Side note, for those wanting more to do with Tumble, try PHB2 and CW, possibly also Cityscape and CS. Combat Acrobat for instance just lists things you can do with Balance. And some other feat lets you Tumble faster, slash someones legs whilst tumbling, etc. With Dance with the Elements, you have Jump, Tumble and Balance checks that are through the roof, and it's a trained skill so you're already proficient with them. Which means all you need to do is establish a reasonable DC for the abilities listed in the feat and you have your alternate uses other than "I roll past the orc". Jump gives you a charge alternative so you can "charge" from 30ft up in the air, or there's a feat/skill trick somewhere allowing you to flip off a wall, but again, just work out a DC for it and you should theoretically be able to do it. Even 10ft is fine though, that counts for the Piercer Cloak (MiC pg118) to give you +2d6 dmg. And there's the bonus to attack from higher ground somewhere, +1?

Cityscape has Swift Tumbler, feat, allows you to tumble 10ft faster than half speed. But that should just require a higher DC, not a whole new feat. Seems a waste anyway. (2e purist, if that hasn't hit yet. :P) The tactical feats from there, Roofwalker and Roof-Jumper which should require DC's, but jumper is partially useful anyway Walker is useless, just lowers the DC's and grants you +1 AC which you don't need but is requirement for jumper. 'shrugs' If you have +80 to jump, may as well make use of it.

Maybe I need to make a new thread.. Discussion and revision of feats for Revised Monk. Right after I finish making my Warlock.

Seerow
2011-04-04, 03:25 PM
1) Quivering Palm is unclear. Your description implies that you can flurry and stack a ton of Quivering Palms on a person at once, then activate them, but the ability isn't clear on how to activate it. Is it a action that replaces one attack in your routine, instead of doing damage? Something you can do when attacking someone in addition to your damage dealt? Maybe I just missed something obvious, but my reading left it unclear to me.

2) Suggestion: A new monk feat to improve the spell resistance. 10+level is typically standard, but with so many tricks out there to boost CLs, it's not hard for casters to just ignore that much entirely.

jiriku
2011-04-04, 09:56 PM
The AC bonus is untyped. As is the speed bonus.

Snap Kick has a +6 base attack bonus minimum, so Heidigger wasn't able to get it until level 9. Regardless, his Wis and Dex are both pretty good, so he tends to hit most of the time. In Tomb of Horrors, it especially isn't an issue because most of the opponents have low-ish AC for their CR.

I take a... fairly radical approach to feats. I've rewritten a couple hundred of the sub-optimal feats to balance better and scale with increasing level. One of these days I'm going to burn the Book of Feats and the Book of Classes to pdf so I can show what I'm talking about instead of just making vague references. Specifically, in this setting Mobility is part of Dodge, while Bounding Assault and Rapid Blitz are part of Spring Attack, unlocking as the character levels up and achieves the appropriate base attack minimums. This means that Heidigger need invest only two feats to get the benefits of Dodge, Mobility, Spring Attack, Bounding Assault, and Rapid Blitz, although he won't get iteratives with his spring attack for many more levels yet. IMO, this is a more appropriate cost for the benefits provided by the feat chain.

Quivering Palm is delivered as part of a normal melee attack. Its effect is in addition to the damage the attack would normally deal. It can be delivered whenever the monk is making an attack, even on an out-of-turn AoO (although the death trigger can only be performed on the monk's turn, since it's a free action).

An SR-boosting feat is a good idea. I'm planning to overhaul the OP later this month and do a comprehensive edit to improve the presentation and spruce up the higher-level features a bit. I'll include that feat when I make my edit.

Heidigger
2011-04-06, 12:56 PM
@Heidigger
Did you use Snap Kick with Decisive Strike before level 9? -4 to attack didn't seem like it would work all that well when I was going over the possibilities. And will you be grabbing the other two Spring Attack feats? Not that you'd need them, 3 attacks at near full BAB and equiv to 4 attacks damage is fine really but you know, more damage is like more fire or negative energy. Must.. Have.. And are you using variant Dodge feats or just vanilla? I make characters, don't game. Not many people I know are interested in gaming so lack a chance to try them out.

Jiriku explained most of why I waited until level 9 for Snap Kick. The good news is that since I was forced to wait until then for BAB to get high enough, the -2 for Decisive Strike vanishes at lvl 9, so I'm stlll only working at a -2 penalty to attacks. As for the stats, as jiriku mentioned, they are pretty good at +5 Dex and +6 Wis bonus, so my offensive and defensive capabilities are pretty high for a monk.

If I were to continue with this character past the end of the Tomb of Horrors, I would probably go with Robilar's Gambit added on so that I could be getting AOOs with my Decisive Strike and Snap Kick's continued to be added in. It's a tad risky, but with a good AC bonus and decent hit points, I would be able to get around environments where Sprint Attack wouldn't be easily available, or against monsters that get around immunities to AOO from Spring Attack of other feats. Throwing in the DR that gets added on later in the monk, or just taking a few extra feats to get it would also help to balance out the additional threat this would cause.

jiriku
2011-04-06, 09:13 PM
Dude, you are getting way too confident. I am totally giving Acererak Leadership and a desert kraken cohort now.

Heidigger
2011-04-07, 06:11 PM
Hey man, he can cast epic spells, he doesn't need any of your DM hocus pocus mumbo jumbo. Chances are we're going to walk in and then he's going to force our skeletons to jump out of our throats... I should stop talking now before I give you any more ideas.

And unless you forget, I've been hit by damn near every trap that didn't get disarmed. I even got anti-gravved and spent a session bouncing along the ceiling like the red balloon. My poor monk is probably going to suffer an alignment shift from PTSD.

jiriku
2011-04-07, 06:47 PM
Good plug for the monk! The revised monk has been demonstrated, under extremely strenuous conditions, to be very solid at surviving the traps he inadvertently triggers by failing Disable Device checks. Immunity to poison turns out to be extremely useful on a trap monkey!

The monk also makes an excellent helium balloon, for those of you who have read the Tomb of Horrors and know what I'm talking about.

CaeruliusVentus
2011-04-08, 09:33 AM
A point of clarity with the Ascetic Knight feat fix, by smite progression do you mean the number of smites per day as well as damage?

jiriku
2011-04-08, 09:45 AM
Yes, exactly. Your smite feature advances up the paladin class table as if you were a paladin of level (paladin level + monk level).

Jade Dragon
2011-04-08, 11:54 AM
I'm gonna use this revision in my campaign.

jiriku
2011-04-08, 02:32 PM
Awesome! Left me know how it goes. :smallsmile:

SPoD
2011-04-08, 05:32 PM
By way of feedback: I was considering asking a DM to allow this fix, but I changed my mind. I thought it might help you to know why: the campaign is starting at level 1, and my rolled stats are not fantastic. Why does that affect my choice? Because this monk gets to add Wisdom and Dexterity to his attack and damage rolls at level 3... but not before. If I want to play this theoretical high Dex, high Wis monk, I have to labor through two levels relying on Strength and thus having a crappy chance to hit and damage. I could put a high stat in Strength, but then I'm losing out on Dex. I'm right back to the same MAD, and your intro says you were trying to de-emphasize Strength.

I realize most of the homebrew on this board tends to get evaluated based on the high level end of things, but I thought it might help to get the perspective of a 1st level player on the class. Maybe you could allow 1st level monks to replace their Strength bonus to attack and damage with their Wisdom bonus on unarmed attacks, which then increases to adding their Wisdom bonus at 3rd level. That would allow someone to be an effective 1st-level monk with a 10 Strength without really offering much to dippers.

jiriku
2011-04-08, 06:34 PM
Hmm, good point. It's the same case of the Dex-based rogue who's sucking wind in melee combat for his first two levels because he doesn't qualify for Weapon Finesse until level 2 and doesn't get a feat slot to buy it until level 3.

Maybe what I could do is implement Versatile Attack for all monks at level 1, instead of the martial monk at level 3. Then I can remove the whole Strength/Dex interchange from Empty Strike, since it will already be provided. This would do more or less what you suggested. Versatile Attack isn't likely to invite dippage because the weapon and armor restrictions make it attractive only to the sort of builds that would want to dip monk anyhow.

Done and done!

Jade Dragon
2011-04-08, 08:05 PM
Awesome! Left me know how it goes. :smallsmile:

I will.

But it's gestalt, and it's gonna be monk/warblade (with a house rule that warblades can use setting sun), so it'll probably be really powerful compared to the rest of the low optimization group. Actually, I'm the DM, it'll be an NPC member of the party. Though it will be treated, for all intents and purposes, as a PC.

Heidigger
2011-04-10, 08:01 PM
Hey man, he can cast epic spells, he doesn't need any of your DM hocus pocus mumbo jumbo. Chances are we're going to walk in and then he's going to force our skeletons to jump out of our throats... I should stop talking now before I give you any more ideas.

And unless you forget, I've been hit by damn near every trap that didn't get disarmed. I even got anti-gravved and spent a session bouncing along the ceiling like the red balloon. My poor monk is probably going to suffer an alignment shift from PTSD.

You may be wondering why I'm quoting myself. I am quoting myself because I actually managed to guess how it would end. The only difference is that my soul was torn out of my throat, not my skeleton. F*** instant death demi-lich spells.

jiriku
2011-04-11, 11:05 AM
Note: The revised monk has excellent saves, even better than those associates with the regular monk, since MAD is reduced and the character is therefore more likely to have high stat bonuses to contribute to his already-good saves.

Heidigger's monk failed the save against the demi-lich's death howl by only one point, the best result for the entire party (among those who were not immune to death effects). He almost survived. :smallamused:

Jade Dragon
2011-04-17, 06:59 PM
I think you should make alignment any non-chaotic, not any lawful.

I also think you should add ghost touch to the list of abilities you're able to get from ki strike. I know you can get it with the improved ki strike feat, but that requires you to spend a feat.

byaku rai
2011-04-17, 08:01 PM
Playing this fix in a new campaign. I'm at level 3, and it's working great so far. :smallbiggrin: My girlfriend is playing a Warblade in the same party, and I've got slightly more health than her, the same attack bonus, and only slightly worse damage (DM has houseruled that 2-handed weapons do double STR to attack and damage). DwtE has already helped a lot, and I'm looking forward to making him unhappy with the higher level class abilities.

The rest of my party is:
1) A very sub-optimal ranger who has gotten a grand total of one hit so far.

2) A cleric who's gonna become a C-zilla, but who is useless in the meantime.

3) A TN dread necromancer who hasn't managed to collect a zombie army yet.

I want to play your fix through 1-20 (if we make it that far) and I'll be sure to post about its performance. Advance warning: thinking about dipping Warblade 1 for the Sudden Leap maneuver (SL + DwtE = PWN). :smallbiggrin:

Mayhem
2011-04-17, 10:08 PM
Nice work. I did catch one slip: At level 5 the 3/4 BAB should be +3, but you have it as +4.:smallwink:

jiriku
2011-04-18, 02:35 AM
Corrected!

@ Byaku: Sudden Leap does sound like some powerful potential pwnage. If the ranger player starts to feel useless once the cleric and dread necromancer get their game on, feel free to gently nudge him in the direction of my swift hunter class.

byaku rai
2011-04-18, 09:31 AM
Will do. :smallbiggrin: link's in your sig, right?

Pechvarry
2011-04-19, 11:06 AM
Playing this fix in a new campaign. I'm at level 3, and it's working great so far. :smallbiggrin: My girlfriend is playing a Warblade in the same party, and I've got slightly more health than her, the same attack bonus, and only slightly worse damage (DM has houseruled that 2-handed weapons do double STR to attack and damage). DwtE has already helped a lot, and I'm looking forward to making him unhappy with the higher level class abilities.

Does this concern anyone else? The damage nudge for 2x STR isn't so horrid, but it's apparently what keeps Byaku's damage from being basically even with a Warblade... but same attack bonus when the Warblade is getting 2x STR to attack?!

jiriku
2011-04-19, 01:03 PM
But from an accuracy perspective, here's what you're seeing:
warblade: full BAB (3) + 2*Str + weapon (assuming at least +1 for mwk)
monk: medium BAB (2) + Dex + Wis - flurry (2)

So the warblade's attack bonus must be 4 + 2*Str, while the monk's bonus is 0 + Dex + Wis. Looks like the monk has excellent Dex and Wis while the warblade has unexpectedly low Strength.

Although, given that his character has slightly more hp than a warblade despite having a hit die three sizes smaller, I've got to wonder where all the warblade's stat points went. Int and Cha? :smalltongue:

byaku rai
2011-04-19, 07:06 PM
Misunderstanding: I have the same attack bonus when not flurrying. o.o If i had the same bonus with the flurry -2, i'd be scared. She has a STR of 18.

As for HP, she rolled badly for her stats and her hit dice. x.x I'm probably gonna push the DM to let her re-roll the 12 (Con) 2 11s (Int and Cha) and 10 (wis).

CaptainPlatypus
2011-04-20, 11:06 PM
Posting simply to add publicity! A player requested using this class (along with another option which she seems more interested anyway) in my campaign, and I had to turn her down, because it's balanced too well. What? Well, it's a very low magic/item campaign, and a monk designed to compete with readily available magic weapons/armor would be a bit much when the rest of the party doesn't even reliably have masterwork gear. I absolutely love the way it looks, though, and how it did in my playtesting (speed-ran it through a couple prepackaged adventures with old character sheets for a party of druid/warblade/binder/monk, and it contributed exactly the right amount IMO) and I can't wait to try it out for myself (or just play with one in the party).

I will say, though, that it "feels" like a T3 class to me. That isn't a complaint, because I love T3 play more than anything, but it's almost strictly better than the core rogue from my way of thinking - slightly less versatile out of combat, massively more so in combat, with better defenses. That may be partially due to my poor personal ability to make the most out of sneak attack, though. If that wasn't the case, I'd just go Monk1/Rogue3/Monk2-17 and do ludicrous haste/speed-snapkick-flurry-sneak-attack damage. From Flash of Sunset. Now that's an assassination.

Speaking of which, are Improved Ki Defense/Strike, Sun School and Pain Touch intended to be more or less taken by every revised monk? Or is this just a function of me not (yet!) having the Book of Feats pdf you mentioned being in the works?

jiriku
2011-04-21, 12:58 PM
It's great to hear about other playtest results!

My original goal was to bring the class from a low T5 to a strong T4, but I'd be pleased if I overshot the mark and gave it enough versatility to mesh well with T3 classes. My desire has always been to give would-be monk players an option that allows them to fit seamlessly into a mid-power group.

Monk remix is better than rogue, yessir. Rogue fixes aren't as popular because core rogues are actually halfway-usable, but for those desiring a T3 rogue, I recommend my daring outlaw class remix, which combines rogue and swashbuckler with flashy combat tricks, a knack for mischief-making, and very good luck.

There aren't intended to be any overdetermined feat choices, although IKS and IKD are intentionally very strong feats. Even those aren't necessarily the best choice for every monk, though. No one in the playtesting I've conducted has ever taken Sun School or Pain Touch, so I'd say you've probably just hit on a strong combination of feats that works well with the kind of playstyle you enjoy.

CaptainPlatypus
2011-04-21, 02:12 PM
It's great to hear about other playtest results!

My original goal was to bring the class from a low T5 to a strong T4, but I'd be pleased if I overshot the mark and gave it enough versatility to mesh well with T3 classes. My desire has always been to give would-be monk players an option that allows them to fit seamlessly into a mid-power group.

Monk remix is better than rogue, yessir. Rogue fixes aren't as popular because core rogues are actually halfway-usable, but for those desiring a T3 rogue, I recommend my daring outlaw class remix, which combines rogue and swashbuckler with flashy combat tricks, a knack for mischief-making, and very good luck.

There aren't intended to be any overdetermined feat choices, although IKS and IKD are intentionally very strong feats. Even those aren't necessarily the best choice for every monk, though. No one in the playtesting I've conducted has ever taken Sun School or Pain Touch, so I'd say you've probably just hit on a strong combination of feats that works well with the kind of playstyle you enjoy.

All of that makes sense to me. And yeah, I just checked out the rest of your homebrew classes last night. Love them, especially the daring outlaw/knight-paladin (though I have to say, I'd have called it a knight-errant) - it's been so long since I messed around with magic classes that I'm not entirely sure on the balance of the others. Can't wait to see the shapeshifter and prophet, though!

As regards Sun School and Pain Touch, it's quite likely that they simply mesh well with both the characters I like to play and the types of encounters I enjoy most - they're excellent for (respectively) reaching and shutting down hard-to-reach-via-melee, dangerous foes, such as casters. And frankly, I was playtesting it along with (and against) traditional, tier 1 and 2 spellcasters, so it's entirely possible that the feats thrive in that environment more than they would otherwise. It's hard for me to believe that effectively extending the duration of stunning fist by X rounds (enjoy your single move action) isn't something everyone would want to do, ditto using abundant step followed by an immediate flurry, but again, that could be (and probably is) entirely playstyle dependent. :)

Anyway, the original point here was to congratulate you on how well the rest of the classes seem to be balanced as well. If you ever get the chance to make a .pdf with the classes/feats/etc all concatenated, that would be brilliant - until then, I may just have to bookmark your "extended signature" post.

Pechvarry
2011-04-21, 10:27 PM
I just need to toss it out there: I feel like Empty Strike needs moved to 5th level, where it won't be such a bloat to attack rolls. I guess it doesn't really matter, but that monk-warblade comparison still has me feeling uneasy. The important part is that I know that disparity would disappear by level 6 or so (hence the desire to see the feature delayed a bit.) so I know it's still a good and balanced class feature.

CaptainPlatypus
2011-04-22, 12:09 AM
I just need to toss it out there: I feel like Empty Strike needs moved to 5th level, where it won't be such a bloat to attack rolls. I guess it doesn't really matter, but that monk-warblade comparison still has me feeling uneasy. The important part is that I know that disparity would disappear by level 6 or so (hence the desire to see the feature delayed a bit.) so I know it's still a good and balanced class feature.

Frankly, I feel like this is true of DwtE as well - they're both good and balanced class features, but IMO the first levels come a bit too early. Fifth would be a nice spot for Empty Strike in particular because it's the second level at which a medium BAB progression like the monk's gets left out, making it a nice spot to toss this in. On the other hand, I don't think giving Ki Shot and Wholeness of Body at third instead of fifth would be gamebreaking - Wholeness is balanced by the level requirement, and Ki Shot is at once situational for a melee monk and more or less a necessity for a ranged monk (especially one that's using shuriken, which would be the most awesome thing ever).

You could argue that both of those would then be vulnerable to dips, but I don't think either is anywhere near as dip-rewarding as Empty Strike and DwtE.

CaeruliusVentus
2011-04-22, 08:34 AM
I think DwtE is reasonable where it is since at 3rd level it lets you be really good at the skills but not really epic. You can tumble freely and jump well enough to make the skill useful in some situations.
Empty strike, on the other hand seems too strong as a class feature when wis is added to damage. Assuming a wis mod of at least 2, that is getting the benefit of weapon specialization on all monk weapons. This in addition to allowing dex as the attack and damage stat (free weapon finesse).

What about if empty strike only adds wis mod to attack and things like grapple? Then you have the capability to go toe to toe with a full BAB as far as being able to hit but not necessarily being able to deal as much damage with each attack.

jiriku
2011-04-22, 09:45 AM
Misunderstanding: I have the same attack bonus when not flurrying. o.o If i had the same bonus with the flurry -2, i'd be scared. She has a STR of 18.

As for HP, she rolled badly for her stats and her hit dice. x.x I'm probably gonna push the DM to let her re-roll the 12 (Con) 2 11s (Int and Cha) and 10 (wis).

So, if I understand correctly, the warblade's attack bonus is +11 (+3 BAB + 8 Str). And for your monk to have a +11 bonus at 3rd level, you must have something on the order of 20 Wis and 18 Dex (+2 BAB, +5 Wis, +4 Dex).

I think there's strength in the argument that ki shot and empty strike could be switched, but it seems to me that the monk/warblade comparison is badly distorted by rolled stats that favored the monk very highly over the warblade.

Assuming the elite array, which is fairly standard for NPC opponents:
warblade 3, Str 15, mwk sword: +6 to hit
monk 3, Dex 14, Wis 15, mwk staff, FoB: +5 to hit
warblade 5, Str 16, +1 sword: +9 to hit
monk 5, Dex 14, Wis 16, ki strike +1, Fob: +8 to hit
Assuming 32 PB, which would allow an 18 in a primary stat and a 16 in a secondary stat:
warblade 3, Str 18, mwk sword: +8 to hit
monk 3, Dex 16, Wis 18, mwk staff, FoB: +8 to hit
warblade 5, Str 19, +1 sword: +10 to hit
monk 5, Dex 16, Wis 19, ki strike +1, FoB: +10 to hit
Assuming crazy PB, massive min/maxing and gear greatly in excess of WBL:
warblade 3, Str 20, +1 sword: +9 to hit
monk 3, Dex 18, Wis 20, +1 staff, FoB: +10 to hit
warblade 5, Str 25 (w/+4 enhancement), +2 sword: +14 to hit
monk 5, Dex 20 (w/+2 enhancement), Wis 25 (w/+4 enhancement), ki strike +1, FoB: +15 to hit
I don't see a problem here.

CaptainPlatypus
2011-04-22, 11:29 AM
So, if I understand correctly, the warblade's attack bonus is +11 (+3 BAB + 8 Str). And for your monk to have a +11 bonus at 3rd level, you must have something on the order of 20 Wis and 18 Dex (+2 BAB, +5 Wis, +4 Dex).

I think there's strength in the argument that ki shot and empty strike could be switched, but it seems to me that the monk/warblade comparison is badly distorted by rolled stats that favored the monk very highly over the warblade.

Assuming the elite array, which is fairly standard for NPC opponents:
warblade 3, Str 15, mwk sword: +6 to hit
monk 3, Dex 14, Wis 15, mwk staff, FoB: +5 to hit
warblade 5, Str 16, +1 sword: +9 to hit
monk 5, Dex 14, Wis 16, ki strike +1, Fob: +8 to hit
Assuming 32 PB, which would allow an 18 in a primary stat and a 16 in a secondary stat:
warblade 3, Str 18, mwk sword: +8 to hit
monk 3, Dex 16, Wis 18, mwk staff, FoB: +8 to hit
warblade 5, Str 19, +1 sword: +10 to hit
monk 5, Dex 16, Wis 19, ki strike +1, FoB: +10 to hit
Assuming crazy PB, massive min/maxing and gear greatly in excess of WBL:
warblade 3, Str 20, +1 sword: +9 to hit
monk 3, Dex 18, Wis 20, +1 staff, FoB: +10 to hit
warblade 5, Str 25 (w/+4 enhancement), +2 sword: +14 to hit
monk 5, Dex 20 (w/+2 enhancement), Wis 25 (w/+4 enhancement), ki strike +1, FoB: +15 to hit
I don't see a problem here.

No particular argument here either. Frankly, I'd be more concerned about its dippability than how much it affects a straight-up game, but that's only a huge problem because everyone ignores the multiclassing rules. Using them as written, there's not really anything wrong.

EDIT: By the way, as written, Versatile Attack lets you apply Dexterity to damage with shuriken/sling attacks. Is this intended?

EDIT 2: Also, Improved Ki Defense is ambiguous as to whether the additional +1 AC bonus it provides counts for the purposes of gaining more advanced IKD and IKS abilities (assuming you somehow have a high enough BAB relative to AC bonus that it matters). It seems to read as if it does, but that seems a bit too good to be true.

Newt
2011-04-22, 10:21 PM
No particular argument here either. Frankly, I'd be more concerned about its dippability than how much it affects a straight-up game, but that's only a huge problem because everyone ignores the multiclassing rules. Using them as written, there's not really anything wrong.

EDIT 2: Also, Improved Ki Defense is ambiguous as to whether the additional +1 AC bonus it provides counts for the purposes of gaining more advanced IKD and IKS abilities (assuming you somehow have a high enough BAB relative to AC bonus that it matters). It seems to read as if it does, but that seems a bit too good to be true.

IKD isn't ambiguous (assuming I read it right), you gain +1 AC to your class based AC which is what the feat requires. HOWEVER you need BAB to get that. You could dip to get more BAB, but then you're losing out on Monk abilities. Oh hey, you got a heap of BAB! Too bad you don't have the class AC to use the abilities now.

There's also no +CL so that's another downer for most dips, and the no armor+light load. Even Rogues get light armor, and they don't get the bonus to AC which Monk does. Then there's the alignment restrictions. So any multiclassing is going to be like multiclassing a PHB Paladin. Not much point when most of your class abilities aren't usable. :P And did I mention no +CL?

Could always add in a multiclass note like the PHB Monk has, namely that Monk's aren't allowed to multiclass barring certain feats like Ascetic Knight, but it's not really needed. IMO of course. Could also conflict with Gestalt, but I've never played that so just guessing.



This in addition to allowing dex as the attack and damage stat (free weapon finesse).

Not quite, they qualify as if they have Weapon Finesse, it's isn't actually WF. The feat grants Dex to attack only, not damage. Think of it like Ranger, can qualify for other feats based upon having this one, but the mechanics are a bit off.

CaptainPlatypus
2011-04-22, 10:29 PM
Yeah, I'm trying out a monk//swift hunter in a PbP gestalt game, which is when this (and the other edit) came up - I realized that if IKD helped with its own prerequisites, suddenly I could get Roaring by taking IKD at level 12. This is why I don't normally play gestalt - things get weird and cheesey even when you aren't trying - but it's fun to mess around with.

As far as dipping the monk goes, it's probably best suited to swordsages and druids, for the reason you pointed out - I didn't really think about the armor requirement. No complaints whatosever then. :)

Pechvarry
2011-04-22, 10:46 PM
So, if I understand correctly, the warblade's attack bonus is +11 (+3 BAB + 8 Str). And for your monk to have a +11 bonus at 3rd level, you must have something on the order of 20 Wis and 18 Dex (+2 BAB, +5 Wis, +4 Dex).

I think there's strength in the argument that ki shot and empty strike could be switched, but it seems to me that the monk/warblade comparison is badly distorted by rolled stats that favored the monk very highly over the warblade.

Assuming the elite array, which is fairly standard for NPC opponents:
warblade 3, Str 15, mwk sword: +6 to hit
monk 3, Dex 14, Wis 15, mwk staff, FoB: +5 to hit
warblade 5, Str 16, +1 sword: +9 to hit
monk 5, Dex 14, Wis 16, ki strike +1, Fob: +8 to hit
Assuming 32 PB, which would allow an 18 in a primary stat and a 16 in a secondary stat:
warblade 3, Str 18, mwk sword: +8 to hit
monk 3, Dex 16, Wis 18, mwk staff, FoB: +8 to hit
warblade 5, Str 19, +1 sword: +10 to hit
monk 5, Dex 16, Wis 19, ki strike +1, FoB: +10 to hit
Assuming crazy PB, massive min/maxing and gear greatly in excess of WBL:
warblade 3, Str 20, +1 sword: +9 to hit
monk 3, Dex 18, Wis 20, +1 staff, FoB: +10 to hit
warblade 5, Str 25 (w/+4 enhancement), +2 sword: +14 to hit
monk 5, Dex 20 (w/+2 enhancement), Wis 25 (w/+4 enhancement), ki strike +1, FoB: +15 to hit
I don't see a problem here.

Instead of asking to see damage comparisons for those levels, perhaps i should ask if damage comparisons already occurred in this thread? Attack being the same isn't so bad if the monk hits like a wuss. But... he doesn't. Likewise, damage potential isn't so bad if you can't expect to get it all the time (low attack rolls is one way, but a better is more situational damage. see: sneak attack). Of course, this is still much ado about nothing (is that how the saying goes?) since things even out better in a few levels.

Newt
2011-04-23, 03:30 AM
Instead of asking to see damage comparisons for those levels, perhaps i should ask if damage comparisons already occurred in this thread? Attack being the same isn't so bad if the monk hits like a wuss. But... he doesn't. Likewise, damage potential isn't so bad if you can't expect to get it all the time (low attack rolls is one way, but a better is more situational damage. see: sneak attack). Of course, this is still much ado about nothing (is that how the saying goes?) since things even out better in a few levels.

There's been a few damage comparisons actually. And the really cool thing? They start on the first page. :smalltongue:
But we're talking levels 3-5 so this really shouldn't matter. If something is unbalanced between say 5 and 15, then you've got a problem since that's a major adventuring space and a long time for a class to be superior to all. 3-5 not so much

And if you're still not convinced, start comparing them to a Cloistered Cleric or even better, a Planar Shepard. :smalltongue:

CaeruliusVentus
2011-04-23, 09:32 AM
Not quite, they qualify as if they have Weapon Finesse, it's isn't actually WF. The feat grants Dex to attack only, not damage. Think of it like Ranger, can qualify for other feats based upon having this one, but the mechanics are a bit off.

I agree and I really like this feature. I generally go dex heavy which means agile monks with no real damage. But it also means giving up a feat so that there is a chance of hitting. This class ability solves both problems.

My original point is that adding wisdom to damage emulates a feat that most melee types won't have access to (weapon specialization). Though I think whether it should be allowed or not is best left to the individual DMs.

Newt
2011-04-24, 08:22 AM
My original point is that adding wisdom to damage emulates a feat that most melee types won't have access to (weapon specialization).

Yea, but most other classes will get some sort of damage increasing feat specific to them. Craven, for instance. A lovely little thing which any class with Sneak Attack damage will love. Fighters get Weapon Specialization, think there's an archery feat to give damage based on distance, there's a feat to increase Favored Enemy bonuses, Smite bonuses.. Then there's a simple Bulls Strength for +2 to damage.

Now Monks have something, except it's built into their class. You could make it a feat, but then you run into the problem of Class == Feats, so basically an unarmed Fighter. And no-one wants that. :P Actually the main problem with making it a feat is throwing it on said Fighter along with Weapon Specialization. This way it's relatively non-abusable and doesn't appear so far to be over powered going by the play tests that have come up in this thread. I get your point, I merely disagree with the conclusion. :p

Oh, I think Weapon Specialization became available to non-Fighters depending on class (some have it in bonus feat list) and BAB. Possibly a variant rule in UA, CW or some such giving the feat to anyone who had a certain amount of BAB. Out of reach of non-full BAB classes though for a greater part of their careers though.



Totally off topic, Vow of Poverty + Revised Monk..
Yes, in return for all the hard work that has gone into making an unarmed and unarmored class I think up ways to exploit that. If it's any consolation, it would prohibit players from making castles out of gold pieces so wouldn't be used that much, and I was thinking about Warlocks at the time.

Lix Lorn
2011-04-24, 08:26 AM
Also, just to point out, Weapon Specialisation is a TERRIBLE feat. Any playgroup more optimised than a core monk avoids it like the plague.

byaku rai
2011-04-28, 07:27 PM
Second campaign with the monk today. x.x I did fairly well, keeping up with the Warblade even though she started out the encounter far from the action. The DwtE bonus to Tumble came in extremely handy, and I cheesed it a bit. Unfortunately, I was instagib'ed towards the end of the encounter. x.x critical hits hurt.

As far as problems go, all there really is to report is the easily-abusable Tumble bonus from DwtE. It makes a mockery of traditional combat (not bad in and of itself, I was tired of playing straight fighter-types). What would be really nice is if there was some way to translate the DwtE bonus into some sort of bonus on attacks/damage, i.e. Acrobatic attacks, Jumping attacks, maybe even something cool to do with balance.

btw, I'm playing as a Catfolk (Races of the Wild), which gives +4 Dex and +2 Cha. I have 16 Wis and 22 Dex.

silphael
2011-08-01, 10:57 AM
What about the synergy between Ki strike and the enhancement bonus of the vow of poverty?

NeoSeraphi
2011-08-01, 11:02 AM
What about the synergy between Ki strike and the enhancement bonus of the vow of poverty?

Enhancement bonuses from different sources don't stack, the higher value overlaps the lower one. So VoP wouldn't help this monk at all, at least in that regard.

jiriku
2011-08-01, 11:10 AM
VoP in general is a trap, although there's a homebrewed fix to it floating around this forum that I generally support. The big win for a monk in taking VoP is AC bonus and feats, and I'd support allowing monk-specific feats to be taken as VoP bonus feats, since they can be viewed as products of his ascetic, devoted lifestyle (some DMs may feel differently though).

ForzaFiori
2011-08-01, 12:17 PM
As far as problems go, all there really is to report is the easily-abusable Tumble bonus from DwtE. It makes a mockery of traditional combat (not bad in and of itself, I was tired of playing straight fighter-types).

It's so much fun though, isn't it. I've been trying to find ways to make use of all the different huge bonuses. So far I've leapt something like 20' straight up, tumbled across an entire battlefield to leap up and grapple a flying opponent, currently I'm balancing on an invisible pole, and can pass the check by 8 if I roll a 1. Feels like I'm actually playing an eastern monk/wuxia star.

byaku rai
2011-08-01, 04:24 PM
My DM hates it when I can just tumble through all the opponents in my way without even rolling, though. XD

jiriku
2011-08-01, 07:52 PM
Heh! Poor DM. Give him a tissue and bag of caltrops, with my compliments. :smallbiggrin:

byaku rai
2011-08-01, 08:01 PM
Oh, I've boosted my autohypnosis as well. Caltrops won't slow me down /at all/. :smallbiggrin:

Human Paragon 3
2011-08-13, 12:04 PM
Just stumbled upon this incredible monk revision! Well done, sir.

I would suggest a variant that trades disable device and trapfinding for survival and track, however, to create a loner wondering the earth, camping out in the forest and tracking down the man who killed his sensei archetype.

Randomguy
2011-08-19, 11:58 PM
Empty body's little brother, this ability is a huge game-changer for the monk. Shifting etheral as an immediate action...

Swift etherealness takes a swift action, not an immediate action. Or am I missing something here? You can still activate it after flurrying an enemy so they can't hit you back, so it's still useful, but it can't save you from rocket tag.

Awesome fix, by the way.

jiriku
2011-08-20, 10:42 AM
Wow. Oh, wow. We've been playing that spell wrong for the past two years in my group. Wow. You'd think the name would have been a tip-off, right? :smalleek:

Thanks for the compliments! The Manhunter ACF now allows a monk to track instead of trapfind. Good idea.

Human Paragon 3
2011-08-20, 10:50 AM
Actually, you can use it as a swift or immediate. check your local listings.

jiriku
2011-08-20, 03:06 PM
Explain? I can't remember where I got the immediate interpretation all those years ago, but reading the book now, it's undeniably a swift cast.

userpay
2011-08-31, 10:36 PM
I think he might be referring to that its all up to the DM.

Ornemus
2011-09-14, 09:43 AM
It is quite funny to see how the same idea, here "keep the monk as close as possible of the 3.5 one" cans lead to such opposite ideas...

To my mind, a trapfinding monk is an example of something far too different from the original one. But the using of a Ki pool is quite natural for me.

Still, I can say that you've made a very, very nice work. I will not use this one straightforward, but I took wide inspiration for my own homebrew version of the monk.

Thank you, then !

Todash
2012-03-15, 11:11 PM
Just wanted to let you know, that I'm currently test running your Monk, in preparation for a Tomb of Horrors group. So far, it's seriously the most enjoyable, and most "monk-like" character I've ever played. Great job, and thank you.

CaeruliusVentus
2012-03-16, 09:54 AM
What would be really nice is if there was some way to translate the DwtE bonus into some sort of bonus on attacks/damage, i.e. Acrobatic attacks, Jumping attacks, maybe even something cool to do with balance.

Been looking into this and there are actually a number of ways to do this with feats. Acrobatic strike from PHB2 gives you a +4 on an attack against a foe you tumbled past until the end of your turn. The others tend to focus around charging to get bonuses on attack or multiples of damage. I include the charge because DWtE combined with the higher move speed means you can charge across almost any battlefield. (the d&d faq says you can tumble during a charge as long as you go in a straight line, though if you have to get past an enemy you can just jump over them). Also, there are some charging feats that focus on attacking from above which is possible with the jump checks after about level 6.

jiriku
2012-03-17, 08:45 AM
I'd agree that there's a vacuum of options at upper levels. Since I first wrote this class several years ago, I've had more opportunity to play and run games in the 10th-16th level range, and I think that while the monk remix will remain combat-effective at those levels, it starts to fall behind in terms of its ability to impact the game world in non-combat situations. I think some support with powerful, level-appropriate feats could fill that gap, especially if they exploit its epic skill-check capabilities. Not really feelin' any good ideas yet, though. Anyone have suggestions?

Lix Lorn
2012-03-17, 12:11 PM
Not really on that note, but making a monk who is not a grappler and didn't take stunning fist, I have no option for a useful level 14 feat... perhaps Far Shot?

jiriku
2012-03-19, 08:16 PM
It's a bit light for a 14th level feat for my taste, but there really isn't much going on for archers at that level, so I can't think of anything better. Far Shot it is. Reference to Far Shot as it's used IMC:

FAR SHOT [Fighter, General]
You are far more effective than others when using ranged weapons against distant targets.
Benefit: When using ranged projectile weapons, such as a bow, your range increment is increased by +50%. When using thrown weapons, your ranged increment is increased by +100%. You can use ranged weapons in windstorm conditions at a -8 penalty.
Advancement: If you have base attack bonus +8 or greater, treat wind conditions as one category less severe when determining how difficult it is to use ranged weapons.
If you have base attack bonus +16 or greater, instead treat wind conditions as two categories less severe.
Normal: It is impossible to use ranged weapons in windstorm conditions.
Special: Far Shot can be used in place of Point Blank shot to qualify for a feat, prestige class, or other special ability. You can take both this feat and Point Blank Shot.

Newt
2012-03-20, 08:05 AM
If you're willing to reshuffle you could give some low level "theme" feats, fire, shadow, cold, etc, based ascetics. Although Fiery Fist and Sun School is in there...

A feat that doubles the Wis Mod bonus for Abundant Step? Heh, and a variant of Sun School which uses Shadow. Shadow Dancer Monk like it should be. :D As opposed to being a 25/30 level S.D. and only being able to jump a paltry 4 miles a day. Improved Ki Strike already allows you to turn your weapon ethereal, a feat which allows you to do it as a Swift action? Because a double ended sword that goes ethereal as you slam the door shut is just cool. :P Flashy lol

Once per day as a Swift action you can temporarily swap the bonus from Improved Ki Strike to different one for X rounds. Afterwards the bonus reverts and you are Y. Exhausted seems a bit much, take something of non-lethal damage?

EDIT:

On the other hand, that could be moving into Ninja/Jedi territory and may leave the Wushu path. YMMV

Lix Lorn
2012-03-20, 08:52 AM
That's not a bad idea; feats to give you more uses for some of your many wis/day stuff.

Lix Lorn
2012-03-20, 08:58 AM
Excellent. With that, a magic item, and another class, I can punch people from 40ft away using magical projections of my hands.

Newt
2012-03-20, 09:42 PM
Excellent. With that, a magic item, and another class, I can punch people from 40ft away using magical projections of my hands.



Now for one of those Wushu/bad martial arts movie moments where you leap up, then punch a flying creature to the ground, without touching them. ^ ^

May I ask which item/alt class you're using? I've seen wizards do the touch spell = ranged spell trick, never seen it in melee form.

Lix Lorn
2012-03-21, 11:14 AM
I have a necklace of natural attacks (from savage species) that gives two natural weapons +1, Throwing and Distance.
By taking the Swordmage (homebrew) class, I can make magical copies of my fists, although minor shenanigans and feats are necessary to use them constantly.

jiriku
2012-04-14, 06:48 PM
It is quite funny to see how the same idea, here "keep the monk as close as possible of the 3.5 one" cans lead to such opposite ideas...

To my mind, a trapfinding monk is an example of something far too different from the original one. But the using of a Ki pool is quite natural for me.

This complaint struck home for me, and I've been thinking about it for months. To address it, I've now moved the monk's Disable Device, Open Locks, and trapfinding into an ACF called School of the Nimble Hand. The default monk will have Decipher Script, Forgery, and Research as a bonus feat, and can trade these things for School of the Nimble Hand.

Randomguy
2012-04-27, 05:42 PM
I found a bit of a loophole in your version of the Sun School feat:

A multiclass monk/swordsage with one level in monk can use shadow blink: swift action, grants a standard action, which you can flurry with. Then you use your move action for Shadow stride: another standard action. Lastly, you use your standard action to initiate shadow jump, and gain a third standard action.

If you're a Monk 11/SwordSage 9, you can flurry for 3 attacks as a standard action. That means that using this gets you 9 attacks at your highest BAB. With roundabout kick as one of your feats, that's 12 attacks. Or you could use two teleports and one full round action, for 13.

Was this intentional, or should it be fixed?

Metahuman1
2012-04-27, 08:07 PM
One exploit that takes a 20th lvl build? And It don't even think it's more powerful then say a Warblade 17/ Bard 3 doing TWF with speed enchanted wepaons, optimized inspire courage, and both Raging Mongoose and Time Stands still. (Heck, I think it might be a bit less powerful then that.)

I don't think that trick would need a fix.

Newt
2012-05-04, 01:27 PM
9 attacks seems like a lot, till you realise a Wizard can kill everyone in a 200 mile radius with Locate City and various shenanigans. Well, fail a reflex save and you die, but most people don't stack reflex as high as they should. I think technically he also destroys buildings and trees as well, doing the equivalent of epic spells without all the bother of actually being epic. And a Druid can live in a permanent Timestop bubble. Sorcerers are Sorcerers. This doesn't even bring the Monk up to on par. :P

A core Fighter might complain, but that's because they're a core Fighter who forgets they should be glad they're not a core monk. A Rogue is going to match it, any class from Bo9S is going to surpass it. If you're putting 20 levels into getting up a decent flurry then you may as well have your little trick. It's like the Wizard Locate City trick, it's going to take most or all of his feats to do so, and there's still a reflex save. So say well done for spending your whole 20 levels working towards being able to do one thing well, now here's an enemy that you can't touch. Have fun :smallcool::smallbiggrin:

Or throw in a Huge monster, teleporting around it's head kicking it would be pretty cool. Especially if an AMF popped up. Also, entirely unrelated to game balance but focusing on the wushu section, there's rumours of high level karate sensai's being able to repeatedly kick and keep themselves off the ground. I say rumours because I've never seen them in person, and I don't do karate anyway. It definitely fits the flavour of this particular Monk though.

jiriku
2012-05-10, 06:28 PM
I am continuing to work on tricks for high level monks. I have a little something planned to improve monkly ranged capabilities, but currently my scarce development hours are tied up with follow-up on the shapeshifter and mage slayer fighter ACF, and development of a remixed hexblade and shadowcaster. The monk will eventually have his day, however.

ben-zayb
2012-08-14, 09:23 PM
I don't mean to practice thread necromancy, but I just noticed some slight errors while browsing through this feat that I am planning to use in a campaign


ASCETIC ROGUE [General]
You have gone beyond the bounds of your monastic training to incorporate new modes of stealthy combat. Although your fellow monks may frown on your methods, none can doubt that your diverse training has improved your ability to strike precisely and bring down your foes quickly.
Prerequisite: Improved Unarmed Strike, sneak attack +2d6.
Benefit: When you use an unarmed strike or special monk weapon with a sneak attack to deliver a stunning attack, you add 2 to the DC of your stunning attempt.
Your rogue and monk levels stack when determining your unarmed strike progression and sneak attack progression. If you replace either of these features via an alternate class feature, your monk and sorcerer levels stack when determining the progression of that alternate feature.
In addition, Bluff becomes a monk class skill for you and Autohypnosis becomes a rogue class skill for you. This does not apply retroactively to any skill points you have already allocated.

Emphasis mine. Also, might I suggest clarifying the prerequisites? Based on the feat description, Monk and Martial Rogue levels will stack for purposes of determining number of fighter bonus feats (an alternate class feature). By default, the Martial Rogue would be ineligible to take this feat, unless he finds another way to get sneak attack.

jiriku
2012-08-18, 08:48 AM
Oh, this is always a work in progress. We're using the monk right now in two current campaigns, and I'm actively working on a revision of it right now. Good point about the feat; I'll make an adjustment.

Since I'm here, let me solicit anyone who's using this monk right now for your experiences:

Gaming experience is showing that the monk's damage output is a bit on the high side when compared to members of other striker-type classes, and that other classes need higher levels of optimization to reach its damage output. Is this also your experience with it? I'm considering whether or not I should remove the benefit that grants Wisdom bonus to damage rolls.

T.G. Oskar
2012-08-18, 11:23 AM
Oh, this is always a work in progress. We're using the monk right now in two current campaigns, and I'm actively working on a revision of it right now. Good point about the feat; I'll make an adjustment.

Since I'm here, let me solicit anyone who's using this monk right now for your experiences:

Gaming experience is showing that the monk's damage output is a bit on the high side when compared to members of other striker-type classes, and that other classes need higher levels of optimization to reach its damage output. Is this also your experience with it? I'm considering whether or not I should remove the benefit that grants Wisdom bonus to damage rolls.

Are you sure it's the Wisdom bonus only? Also, at what range does the Wisdom bonus begins being too much and at what moment stops being too much?

Playtesting should always be done at a much wider range than usual, as what may seem abusive at once may become a liability at higher levels. If you usually play between levels 1-6, then optimizing for Strength and Wisdom may seem like a lot (it's two full scores added, not like adding one and a half times your Strength to damage when wielding a two-handed weapon). I recall you mentioned a long time ago that it was easier to optimize two different scores than optimize one; I'd hate to say that backfired on you.

When I worked on the Warmage, I made a nice table using a bit of data compiled from the Monster Manual, which was the average/maximum HP totals, and then threw a table (with graph) figuring how the Warmage's Edge worked as usual and as I proposed. The way I proposed, on average, followed pretty closely the curve that the average amount of HP made. That was using a single Fireball, with its damage dice cranked up to 20 (as the other bit I suggested for Warmage Edge increases the damage dice cap), and using both the average result for Fireball damage dice and the maximum result (as if you had used Maximize Spell) alongside the bonus damage to figure that out. It always took 2 Fireballs to beat a single enemy, and since that's the average HP for each level (compared to CR), that means it was right on the spot. People insist it's too much, but always seek to change Warmage Edge to Charisma (to make it even SADder) and to nerf the damage potential a bit (because most people using the game tend to see the damage is pretty high), but I also have to see the table results AND what I also playtested.

From 'brewer to 'brewer, I'd recommend you do the same. If the problem is at low levels, it's probably because people are optimizing both scores, so it may seem a bit inflated (remember you also add Wis to attack rolls, so the chances of landing a hit is higher; that influences the actual damage done, and weighs the total damage usually higher, in comparison to other classes' damage output). If the problem is at high levels, I see another culprit: the huge amount of unarmed strike damage PLUS the amount of attacks you can land. Remember all the tricks you've added and those that already exist still remain in play; any time that you can pull off a full attack routine at higher levels, that's 4d6/6d6 plus two scores (which can be left at a reasonably high level) plus the bonus from your magical fists (up to a +5), and that's 5 hits. With Str, Wis, and enhancement bonuses to attack rolls, you might be hitting more than you think (and at least three hits will land), so you'll end up dealing much more damage than your average Rogue/Ninja/Spellthief by virtue of how weighed damage influences.

Compare, for example, to how a Rogue with Dust of Disappearance and chucking Alchemist's Fires/Frosts/Sparks or Acid fares against your Monk at each level. At low levels you'll see the results as expected, but at higher levels you may see quite the difference (because while the Monk is hitting normal AC, the rogue is hitting touch AC while flat-footed, so the total amount of AC will be definitely lower). The total amount of weighed damage will influence a lot, but the resources used by the Rogue are equally more. This is assuming equal degrees of optimization, so the Monk is quite probably sporting by that level Periapts of Wisdom and Gloves of Ogre/Belts of Giant Strength, so the damage output will be higher.

Try, if you want, to not add Wis to Str, but instead replace Str with Wis. Does that seem to resolve your problem? If it still doesn't, then you'll probably notice the problem is different.

I have the hunch the problem is somewhere else, but that may be my mind playing tricks on me. Perhaps you don't have to remove the Wisdom bonus to damage rolls, but rather shift it or apply it to a lesser degree; otherwise, someone who barely optimize might observe the Monk sucking just as much as it did before, and that's not your goal, isn't it? It's not the same to draw conclusions from players with an eye for optimization than to draw it from NPCs with elite arrays and less WBL than your players.

jiriku
2012-08-19, 10:22 AM
It's not necessarily the Wisdom bonus per se, but rather, the Wisdom to damage feature is easy to remove without upsetting function of the rest of the class. Thus, if I have to cut damage output, that's the place to start.

Currently, we are running a low-level monk in a campaign that has just hit level 2, and a high-level monk in a campaign that has just hit level 12. The level 2 monk is doing quite well and fits appropriately into the party, but is not yet of the level where he can stack too many options.

The high-level monk is stacking a monk's belt, Superior Unarmed Strike, Snap Kick, and +Dex and +Wis items. With Dex 20 and Wis 22, this gives him an unarmed damage of 6d6+11. He makes between 4 and 6 attacks per round, depending on whether he can full attack and whether he is hasted. His attack routine with Snap Kick is +20/+20/+20/+15, so most of his hits will land, especially in fights against numerous lower-CR opponents. His damage output thus averages about 90 - 180 per round, depending on circumstances. He performs noticeably worse in boss fights where his attacks tend to miss much more often. Combining his Sun School feat with Empty Step, there is very little that can prevent him from making at least 4 attacks per round.

We run fairly high-op games, so these numbers aren't completely beyond the pale, but my concern is that it was easy for him to do this. He's using two popular monk feats and three common magic items to do this. It's not an obscure or fiendishly clever build. So, as mentioned, I'm kind of on the razor edge between "meh" and "oh jeez".

Lix Lorn
2012-08-19, 10:48 AM
It kinda seems that deliberately making things optimisable is hard. It's easy to make something do a lot of damage, but it seems that making it possible to do damage if you really try is incredibly difficult in anything as self-contained as most homebrew.

ForzaFiori
2012-08-19, 11:11 AM
I'm playing your monk, and at 8th level (it's gestalt with a psion egoist though), and have 16 Dex and Wis, and a monks belt. I can attack with +15/+10, or +14/+14/+9, without being hastened, for 3d6+7 HP. He kicks ass against mooks, but usually almost dies against bosses since he has the lowest AC of our two meleers at 26 (19 before using Inertial Armor) and 61 health. I will say that I haven't caused an AoO the entire game, have jumped up onto a 12' high ledge, and will try to grapple anything that's even remotely my size.

I think that the monk is designed as a crowd clearer - It's someone capable of rounding up all the mooks and disposing of them while the others work on the boss.

our game is also a strange mix of over and underpowered. I know I didn't optimize, and I don't think the others did, but it's gestalt, with a free +1 template, and the DM has been throwing us a bit more than WBL.

T.G. Oskar
2012-08-19, 12:32 PM
It's not necessarily the Wisdom bonus per se, but rather, the Wisdom to damage feature is easy to remove without upsetting function of the rest of the class. Thus, if I have to cut damage output, that's the place to start.

Currently, we are running a low-level monk in a campaign that has just hit level 2, and a high-level monk in a campaign that has just hit level 12. The level 2 monk is doing quite well and fits appropriately into the party, but is not yet of the level where he can stack too many options.

The high-level monk is stacking a monk's belt, Superior Unarmed Strike, Snap Kick, and +Dex and +Wis items. With Dex 20 and Wis 22, this gives him an unarmed damage of 6d6+11. He makes between 4 and 6 attacks per round, depending on whether he can full attack and whether he is hasted. His attack routine with Snap Kick is +20/+20/+20/+15, so most of his hits will land, especially in fights against numerous lower-CR opponents. His damage output thus averages about 90 - 180 per round, depending on circumstances. He performs noticeably worse in boss fights where his attacks tend to miss much more often. Combining his Sun School feat with Empty Step, there is very little that can prevent him from making at least 4 attacks per round.

We run fairly high-op games, so these numbers aren't completely beyond the pale, but my concern is that it was easy for him to do this. He's using two popular monk feats and three common magic items to do this. It's not an obscure or fiendishly clever build. So, as mentioned, I'm kind of on the razor edge between "meh" and "oh jeez".

If I recall correctly (at least that's the consensus of the Playground), Superior Unarmed Strike and Monk's Belt do not stack. He's dealing damage as a 20th level monk while at 12th level, and what still worries you is that the Wis to damage hurts the character?

Your own data tells you another story. In low levels, your monk's damage output is running fine; perhaps a bit higher, but nothing game-breaking. What seems to be the problem is the large amount of hit dice the monk has, coupled with the tricks to make the core Monk viable in terms of damage: I think the 6d6 is influencing a lot more in the damage output than the Wisdom bonus.

To explain further: the Wis bonus the character has adds a +6 bonus to damage, with the caveat that it also adds a +6 to the attack bonus. The damage dice deal an average of 15 points per blow, while the actual amount is supposed to be half of that (7.5 points of damage). The Monk qualifies for Improved Natural Attack, the third leg on damage optimization, and with Enlarge Person/Extension it gains two damage dice increases. Either one can raise the Monk's damage output at least to 8d6 (the damage for a Colossal weapon) and through calculation may end up close to 10d6-12d6 points. Here's where the damage escalation comes up; treating unarmed strike damage as size increases ends up boosting damage far faster than you'd think. You mention there's little options at 2nd level to deal insane amounts of damage; I just casually pointed two (which grant 1d8-2d6 points of damage plus the bonus). You should reconsider the damage dice increase, if that worries you too much; after all, Wisdom damage increases can only reach so far.

Even then, it doesn't reach the exorbitant amounts of damage with full-bore optimization with the core Monk. You're basically shooting your own class in the foot because of how easy it is to optimize it at later levels, even if you state that it clears well low-level mooks but still has some challenge with proper or over-CR mooks.

jiriku
2012-08-19, 09:09 PM
If I recall correctly (at least that's the consensus of the Playground), Superior Unarmed Strike and Monk's Belt do not stack. He's dealing damage as a 20th level monk while at 12th level, and what still worries you is that the Wis to damage hurts the character?

Well, sure. The extra damage gained from the feat and the belt is an average of +7 per hit. The extra damage gained from Wisdom is +6 per hit. The two are equivalent.

Metahuman1
2012-08-20, 08:18 AM
And a twf build in any party that features a bard with optimized inspire courage and dragonfire inspiration could be dealing a comparable level of damage. And there are Charger builds that can not only match but exceed it at that level.

And that's not even getting into things that DMM clerics or Natural spell druids can and will do.

Lix Lorn
2012-08-20, 09:10 AM
I think the problem is that he can do it WITHOUT needing any help or optimisation.
Besides, what if the monk has a dragonfire bard? They make enough attacks for that to hurt.

Metahuman1
2012-08-20, 09:18 AM
And the Druid and Cleric and Charger barbarian or Paladin all continue to laugh.


I'm actually playing your Monk in a home brew Oriental Adventures game, and I'm focusing on Trips and Grapples and when I can get the feat's bullsrushing. Right now it's a lot of fun and the party loves me to death cause I keep making there lives that much easier.

The DM also loves me cause I've got the skills to be a knowledge monkey so I keep rolling knowledge checks on crap and he get's to hand out all this neat information and fluff and even useful details.

T.G. Oskar
2012-08-20, 04:49 PM
And a twf build in any party that features a bard with optimized inspire courage and dragonfire inspiration could be dealing a comparable level of damage. And there are Charger builds that can not only match but exceed it at that level.

And that's not even getting into things that DMM clerics or Natural spell druids can and will do.


I think the problem is that he can do it WITHOUT needing any help or optimisation.
Besides, what if the monk has a dragonfire bard? They make enough attacks for that to hurt.


And the Druid and Cleric and Charger barbarian or Paladin all continue to laugh.

I actually laugh at the last proposal. Really, a charger Paladin?

jiriku's concern is essentially what Lix mentioned: he's worried that only a modicum of optimization is granting a huge load of damage. Your retort is that something heavily optimized for damage deals a whole lot more. It's a question of proportions and options.

You have to look at the question from the right proportion. jiriku's actual concern is that, with options expected to boost the Monk's power, the class deals a solid amount of damage. To put it in perspective, he's mentioning that only TWO feats, a specialized item for Monks, and items that are essential to ANY build (stat-boosting items) grant at 12th level the ability to deal a whole lot of damage. He actually agrees that it's not enough compared to other types, but that the ease of damage output worries him.

Now, look at the DFI Bard. The bard needs, at the very least, three feats (Song of the Heart, Dragonfire Inspiration, plus Dragontouched to qualify; if you want the SPECIFIC type of damage, you have to choose a particular race OR get Draconic Heritage with a specific type of dragon, so that's a choice of race and a choice of feat), then get Inspirational Boost (one of your 1st level spells), THEN get Words of Creation (yet another feat). Add a Vest of Legends and you can see how you can grant somewhere around 6d6-10d6 points of energy damage per hit to everybody. Comparatively, the Bard needs 3-5 feats, a spell and perhaps an item to grant insane amounts of damage. That's more optimization than the Monk requires, as the Monk only needs three books (PHB, DMG and Tome of Battle) to the Bard's 5 (PHB, DMG II, Spell Compendium, Dragon Magic, Book of Exalted Deeds) and the amount of resources expended is likewise large (2 feats, 3 items versus 3-5 feats, 1 item, 1 spell, and potentially lock race and/or alignment).

Let's compare a DMM Cleric as well. A DMM Cleric needs three feats (Extend Spell, Persistent Spell, Divine Metamagic [Persistent Spell]), possibly Extra Turning, and a whole bunch of Nightsticks. To duplicate the monk's damage potential, it has to deal a minimum of 5 hits, all of them with a reasonable to-hit chance, and deal somewhere along the lines of 6d6+11 points of damage per hit. With Divine Power and Righteous Might persisted, a two-handed weapon enchanted with Greater Magic Weapon (extended, of course), and maybe one or two more things, you can duplicate the effect; however, you're subject to dispelling. Once again, it's a quite complex amount of steps to duplicate what the Monk can do in only a few steps, and do well (recall that the highest attack bonus is +20, a combination of the Monk's BAB plus the bonuses from Dexterity and Wisdom).

The one character that can easily surpass the Monk in preparation is the Natural Spell Druid, because it only needs one thing to optimize: Natural Spell. Sure, you can optimize a bit further (Venomfire + Fleshraker), but just choosing a bear and mauling everything with Lion's Charge and three attacks works pretty plausibly. If you were to optimize the Monk and the Druid for damage potential to their limits, the Druid would truly laugh at the Monk.

The Charger Paladin, on the other hand, is the complete opposite of the spectrum. To make a proper Paladin, you need at least three feats (Mounted Combat, Ride-by Attack, Spirited Charge), a specific weapon (Lance), a specific ACF (Charging Smite), a specific weapon enhancement (Valorous), a special mount that's worthwhile, a spell (Rhino's Rush) and a way to deal that damage many times (Pouncing Charge? Travel Devotion?). Just a single charge is enough, but it sets you up as a one-trick pony that eventually loses steam. Setting a Charger Paladin requires QUITE a lot of heavy optimization, unlike the Monk, which is jiriku's concern in the first place.

Now, the whole deal with it is that the Monk's damage output with only a modicum of optimization is not overwhelming, but actually decent enough. With little optimization granting high returns, you can thus open to diversification, expanding some of your other options. If it works phenomenally well with one thing and still can pull off others pretty well, that sets it up right on Tier 3, which is his goal. Comparing Tier 1 options is just...well, misguiding, and comparing a low-op Tier 3 class with a high-op Tier 5 class sorta misses the point. With an equal degree of optimization, the Monk deals a reasonable amount of damage, but the Cleric and the Druid still win because of the breadth of options, whereas the Paladin will suffer because of their lack thereof. His concern is that he simply made things too easy; the proper answer is to address whether that concern is valid or not. Using the equivalent of hyperboles doesn't help to address that concern.

Metahuman1
2012-08-20, 05:58 PM
Ok, if his concern is that it was too easy, then no, it wasn't.


See, it shouldn't be difficult to make the character do cool/nice things. That was one of the things Tome of Battle did really, really, really well. Anything in the book that was grabbed cause it looked cool was almost certainly just that, cool. Plus, it worked more or less the way you wanted it to 8-9 out of 10 times.

People want the monk to punch things and cause them to stay down, and do it quickly while just moving all over the freaking place like something out of an action movie. they want to feel Like Neo, or Jet Li, or Chuck Norris, or Bruce Lee, or Jean Claude Van Damn. Or something out of an old Wuxia Legend. Or, yes, maybe an Anime.

And they want to be able to do this with out years of work and building up system mastery, just to accomplish something significantly less powerful then let's say, rewriting all of reality.

So, if your dealing strong damage and still have a couple of interesting tricks beyond "I walk up and hit it in the face.", particularly when that in no way helps solve the problem, and this is being done with little work on the part of the player, then your on the right track.



I know I loved just having to pick a few feats, more then half of which were easy to find, and be able to be really good at the things I wanted to be good at for the Monk I'm playing.

Dumorimasoddaa
2012-08-20, 06:45 PM
While the level of optermisation for this is relatively low it's in part due to the monks belt an item added to "fix" the monk being weak and not having as much to spend wealth on. If I was going to make any fix it would be to see how well the monk works with that item removed or increased in price. Rather than change a class that works well in every way bar that one item, from my experience with it.

Lix Lorn
2012-08-20, 08:39 PM
Ok, if his concern is that it was too easy, then no, it wasn't.

See, it shouldn't be difficult to make the character do cool/nice things. That was one of the things Tome of Battle did really, really, really well. Anything in the book that was grabbed cause it looked cool was almost certainly just that, cool. Plus, it worked more or less the way you wanted it to 8-9 out of 10 times.
Of course doing cool/nice things shouldn't be hard.

Doing a lot of damage is not 'doing cool/nice things.
Doing decent damage is necessary. Doing optimised damage without optimisation is NOT.
if you're playing in a game where optimisation is necessary, why aren't you a wizard/cleric/druid?

Metahuman1
2012-08-20, 10:09 PM
Cause there are only so many ways to make a bear riding a bear leading a bear army and shooting bears entertaining after awhile, and it's nice to want to pick up a different theme and actually have that option?

And dealing a lot of damage is nothing more then doing cool martial arts moves and then having them actually hit the mark and succeed in taking down the target. Which, in general, is part of what makes the moves cool and the sort of thing you want to do in general.

Lix Lorn
2012-08-20, 10:11 PM
What makes 6d6 cooler than 3d6?

Metahuman1
2012-08-20, 11:00 PM
It isn't, if 3d6 successfully takes down the target and that's what you wanted to do. If you don't want to take down the target on the swing, it doesn't matter if it's 3d6 or 6d6. If you do, and 3d6 is enough, then it still doesn't matter. If, however, you do, and 3d6 either doesn't or can't do it, but rolling 3 more d6 changes that form "He get's hit and stays standing the swings back" to "He takes it right to the temple and topples like a house of cards.", then 6d6 was that much cooler.

A stream lined example but I don't feel like writing out a massive fight scene with 2 different endings to make the point.

Lix Lorn
2012-08-21, 11:29 AM
So... you want the fight scene to go /exactly/ as you want?
Then... why are you playing an rpg, and not writing a story?

Metahuman1
2012-08-21, 12:43 PM
No, but I do want to play someone who's got at what he does. I want to feel like I'm capable and cool.

And that requires me to win more often then loose, both in major fights and minor one's. Cause that's generally what being good means.

Lix Lorn
2012-08-21, 12:59 PM
And do you have to win on the first hit? Cause really two hits may as well be five hits. It's only one hit that is majorly cooler than any other amount.

Metahuman1
2012-08-21, 01:14 PM
Considering that in this game failing to drop an enemy fast can very often be fatal, yeah.

Lix Lorn
2012-08-21, 02:38 PM
Then you need a DM who doesn't give you overkilly stuff? :/

Metahuman1
2012-08-21, 03:07 PM
Or a class that can actually take CR appropriate challenges.

TechnOkami
2012-08-21, 03:10 PM
Or a class that can actually take CR appropriate challenges.

Considering a lot of the CR monsters in 3.5 aren't actually fit for whatever level they're set to (I mean, a good chunk of them are, but your DM might be making the mistake, I don't know), I wouldn't call it a problem of the class being inadequate, I'd call it as the DM not knowing how powerful of beasties he's throwing @ his enemies.

T.G. Oskar
2012-08-21, 05:27 PM
Whoa, this is going out of proportion!

Is it really necessary to debate about why enough damage is/not necessary to have fun in the game? If it were about me, I wouldn't mind all the damage: regardless of the relatively "low" optimization, it still requires a few feat and item choices to make it work as-is, whereas the core Monk can deal nearly five times the dynamic part of the dice (around the same level, with Monk's Belt, and then getting INA, Expansion and probably something else in order to stack size increases, or having Greater Mighty Wallop). Compared to that, the increase from Wisdom is small. The advantage of the latter is its static nature, which makes it able to increase through critical hits (but you're working with an unarmed strike, which doesn't have the best crit range OR crit multiplier) and deals sure damage, but I've constantly stressed the idea that the damage dice is perhaps a bit too exaggerate, and could be changed without harming the Monk that much.

Now, I would debate on whether the Monk can do more than just "punch things really hard", because reducing the damage ratio of the class might somewhat nerf it, considering jiriku's focus is on "mobile skirmisher". Isn't the point to deal a nice amount of damage instead of debating that's "too much", even if it requires optimization (little, but it requires such). I'd consider having taken something too far if I had the idea of "mobile skirmisher" and then made him a better tank than the Crusader (something which wasn't the whole point); however, if he can deal quite a bit of damage without sacrificing movement, then it's fine. Can the playtest character pull off all the attacks after movement, or just about 2? jiriku mentions Snap Kick, plus his flurry works during pouncing or Spring Attacking, so it relies on a specific set of tactics (either stand still and flurry, or move and flurry; if the enemy is airborne and the Monk can't get him, he's toast, and high jump can only take him that far). If, to that, you insist that damage is too little, then it seems you're losing the focus of the class.

However, it's incorrect to support the other argument based on hyperboles, such as "the Cleric and the Druid can do that, so the Monk must". Ideally, it should be "the Rogue and the Warblade and the Swordsage can, so the Monk should as well". Can the Rogue do loads of damage as effectively as the Monk? Can the Warblade do the same? Does the Swordsage still eclipse the Monk? Those should be the questions answered, rather than comparing them to high Tier classes or considering X amount of damage too much when the focus of the class is high damage and superior mobility (and dabbling into party face and infiltration).

Geez, what one has to do for their rivals...

jiriku
2012-08-22, 08:13 PM
Oskar's right on the money here.

A big focus of my 'brew has been to cheapen attack options, freeing resources to spend on versatility. However, players don't have to spend extra resources on versatility. They can spend them on stacking more attack options, thus creating an unbalanced character. It's great if there's 10 ways to deal x damage; that allows for varied play styles. But it's bad if a player stacks them for 10x damage.

I like the non-stacking interpretation of monk's belt and Superior Unarmed Strike. Really, nobody needs the ability to do something at class level +9. This honors the basic feedback I'm hearing, that the monk works well out-of-the-box. It also curtails excessive option-stacking.

Newt
2012-08-27, 09:19 PM
It's great if there's 10 ways to deal x damage; that allows for varied play styles. But it's bad if a player stacks them for 10x damage.

I like the non-stacking interpretation of monk's belt and Superior Unarmed Strike.

There's your fix right there. Make Superior Unarmed Strike a named bonus the same as Monk's Belt, or simply say they don't stack. I've seen similar in Wizards material talking about Wizards and Spell Penetration, no reason Monks are exempt.

Although mid game you still might have a problem since there's two bonuses to attack/damage. That alone makes it easier to buy for since you won't run into the "named bonuses don't stack" problem like other classes will. If a Rogue wants to stack Dex, there's only so many ways he can do it before it becomes prohibitively expensive to get the numbers he wants. A Monk can say well the +6Wis I want is too high, but +3Wis and a +3Dex items are much cheaper.

Can't see it being a game changer, but it would definitely boost him that little bit for a while.

LordErebus12
2012-08-27, 09:36 PM
this truely is amazing. it vastly improves the standard 3.5 monk.

Metahuman1
2012-08-28, 01:22 PM
Well, it's a Medium BAB Chassie, and it's not hard for a good dm to adjust for that with enemy's that either prioritize mobility so that the monk can't pin them down in large numbers every turn, thus giving the rest of the party time to do some killing, with enemy's that can take a significant beating and thus will take a round or two to drop each, Trolls coming to mind just for a MMI example off the top of my head, or enemy's that are good at not taking straight hits for full damage. Just a human with a tower shield get's a 50% miss chance right there. Or a human with a spiked chain and an enlarge person spell tripping targets.



And all that's being done with little to know spell casting, and no spell casting above 1st lvl spells. That's entirely reasonable for a mid level party to be fighting.

jiriku
2012-08-30, 07:19 PM
@LordErebus: Thank you!

We'll make the adjustment to non-stackingness during our next game session. We'll see how it plays, as there's likely to be a lot of combat in the next game session. The PCs walked right into an ambush in the last game and barely escaped with their lives. The monk's mobility saved the day, however, allowing him to grab the phylactery they were after just before they teleported out (pity it was a fake :smallamused:).

10/28/2012 Update: The non-stacking adjustment smoothed group balance rather well. I'm finding that the monk still pushes the envelope on damage output, however, and that in particular boss fights are over too soon. I am considering moving the +Wis to damage feature out of the class and into the Eagle Claw Attack feat, which will have the effect of slightly slowing the power progression of monk players who want to stack feats in order to deal insane damage. Still mulling it over.

zzuxon
2012-10-25, 09:52 PM
I WANT TO PLAY THIS CLASS
*convulses on the floor*

jiriku
2012-10-29, 09:36 PM
Thank you! You'll be glad to know that if you convulse on the floor while playing this class, it's rather easy to make the Tumble check to stand up again as a free action on your next turn. :smallbiggrin:

ForzaFiori
2012-10-29, 10:08 PM
I WANT TO PLAY THIS CLASS
*convulses on the floor*

You need to. This is easily my favorite monk fix of all time, and just plain fun to play.

AvianMalkavian
2012-11-06, 12:03 AM
I've just gotta say that I love this design for the Monk class. It maintains that same Monk feel while becoming far better at what it should be able to do.

StreamOfTheSky
2012-11-18, 01:17 PM
This is amazing! Shame I'll never find a game/DM to play it in, most likely...

EDIT: Probably obvious, but just for clarification purposes...

1. I assume Dance with the Elements' bonus to Jump is in addition to the general +4 you get per 10 ft of speed above 30 ft.

2. I assume the speed bonus, like the original monk's fast movement and the haste spell, applies to any movement mode you have a listed speed for. So someone drops a Fly spell on the monk, it applies to that; monk is an aquatic race with a swim speed, it applies to that; and so forth....

And you know, I was thinking... Dance With the Elements should also benefit climb. And consider at some point adding the ability to cut the jump DC for vertical by half. With a DC of 4 per 1 ft jumped, even if you have a jump check of 100, you're only leaping 25 ft up.

jiriku
2012-11-24, 01:44 PM
1. Yes

2. Yes

Good suggestion! I'll add that to my idea hopper for the monk update I'm working on.