View Full Version : Idea for a decent Monk build

2011-02-12, 12:46 AM
I was browsing through the Draconomicon and came across the Initiate of the Draconic Mysteries PrC. At first I wasn't impressed, every spatbook seems to have at least one prestige class that is like a monk but not, and gives a lot of the same abilities. And monks kinda stink, so who cares.

Then I noticed the prerequisites, and realized that this class has one really nice feature: with the right build you can join it after one level. See, monks have some neat abilities, but they all come very late in the game, when everyone else has cooler stuff anyway. But by entering this class good and early, you can get some of the monk's nicest goodies way ahead of time, which makes them much more valuable. And you'll get some useful stuff on top of that, including the PrC's awesome capstone ability.

Simply be a human monk with an Int of 14, and you'll be able to fill all the requirements for the PrC at level 1, and join at level 2. Take it for all 10 levels and you'll have:

*Same HD, BaB, skills, and saves as a normal monk would.
*Same unarmed damage as a normal monk at that level (1d10)
*Evasion and Ki strike (magic) at the same level
*Improved Evasion 2 levels earlier than normal
*Spell Resistance 5 levels earlier
*Timeless Body 6 levels earlier

On top of that you'll get:

*Frightful Presence
*Your crit mod for unarmed attacks is x3
*The ability to cast Shapechange 1/day to turn into a dragon of up to Huge size for 1 hour. So you'll have access to one of the most awesome 9th levels spells in the game 6 levels before a wizard will.

Stuff you'll lose out on:
*Your Flurry of Blows will be lame but it doesn't matter: the bigger dragons have many natural attacks which will more than make up for it, especially with their excellent strength scores. And that's not even counting the breath weapon.
*Lower AC bonus, but a dragon's natural armor will, again, more than make up for it.
*Lower speed bonus: dragons can fly
*No Slow Fall: dragons can totally fly.
*A bunch of the monk's other miscellaneous class features that no one ever uses.

By this point you simply select another PrC (which any normal monk is probably doing by now anyway) to advance in.

Seems to me that this could make a decent mid-level Magekiller build. You'll have SR and Improved Evasion earlier than expected, a powerful combat form that can dole out many attacks per round, less MAD-ness than a normal monk as you can focus less on your physical ability scores much like a wildshaping druid can (I recommend high wisdom, as dragons have poor Dex, but your wis-to-AC will remain in any form), and the good saves of a monk.

And you can play Bruce "The Dragon" Lee if he could turn into an actual dragon. Animality!

Any thoughts/suggestions?

2011-02-12, 12:53 AM
It's a melee character that can appreciate the 15 minute workday.

2011-02-12, 12:59 AM
To qualify to become an initiate of the draconic mysteries, a
character must fulfill all the following criteria.
Feats: Alertness, Improved Unarmed Strike, Power Attack.
Skills: Concentration 6 ranks, Jump 8 ranks, Knowledge
(arcana) 6 ranks, Knowledge (religion) 4 ranks, Tumble
4 ranks.
Language: Draconic.

That's skill ranks (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/skills/skillsSummary.htm), not total skill modifier, so it's impossible to begin taking this prestige class before your 6th character level.

2011-02-12, 01:03 AM
I'm a bit groggy, so maybe there is something I'm missing, but how are you meeting all the requirements for the class at level 1? The maximum rank you can have in a class skill is class level + 3, so at level 1 you could only have 4 ranks in something. Jump requires 8 ranks, meaning you have to be at least level 5.

2011-02-12, 01:05 AM
Ooh, good point. I forgot about that little rule, because for some reason the character builder software I use doesn't enforce it.

Bummer, guess it wouldn't really work, then.

Strife Warzeal
2011-02-12, 01:28 AM
Technically any human can meet the requirements by level 5 (and take it on the 6th, if I understand correctly). And other races by level 6 and take it on the 7th.
H - Alertness
1st - Improved Unarmed Strike
3rd - Power Attack
And have at least 12 int to get draconic.
Is the capstone worth the levels and feat investment?
If someone has the time, can you try making a good build that hits the cap kinda like the Iron Chef the playground does.