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Soilborn
2011-02-15, 03:24 AM
I have an aching feeling that this class has the potential to be incredibly overpowered, but Iím willing to work it into a more balanced state. To make up for the nearly full dual-progression the class abilities are either lacking in potency or have low combat functionality. Iím looking for more feats to add to the list of familiar bonus feats, so some suggestions would be just dandy.



The Prodigal Son


http://img151.imageshack.us/img151/2707/prodson.jpg
Image by Eva Widerman. ( http://www.eva-widermann.de/)

"When I first met your father he had his nose in a book and I swear to Pelor it has never left. He even brought one to our wedding day! I had to scold him several times to put it away during the procession! And now Iliatís picking up the habit, at such a young age! I only hope it doesnít become as problematic with your son as it is with my husband." Ė Telisa Herath, wife of Johan Herath.

The chronic bookworm, the dedicated scholar, the disciplined learner. These are all archetypes of the typical wizard, but few reach the pentacle of studiousness of the Prodigal Sons and Daughters. These individuals are constantly driven to discover and exercise new things, valuing knowledge above all else. Their dedication allows them unparalleled capabilities in the magical arts that no single-tracked mind can achieve. So wrapped up are they in their studies and experiments they rely upon the service of their familiars to perform the mundane tasks of everyday life.

The primary feature of the Prodigal Son is his ability to progress two spellcasting classes simultaneously. This is largely a result of his intensely studious nature which borders upon being a class restriction. Constantly purusing texts has also given him an immense pool of knowledge with which he can better understand the otherwise foreign world outside of his abode.

Becoming a Prodigal Son

Becoming a Prodigal Son or Daughter requires both an indomitable drive to learn a mind bestowed with the gifts of managing all of the information that spills into it. Rare is a person who combines these virtues of will and talent, but those that do become among the most knowledgeable of people. They often rise to great heights of status, finding themselves as the archmagi of magical academies, dukes who oversee numerous congregations or town elders of great renown.

The downside for most of these characters is that their overwhelming addiction to the attainment of knowledge often leads them to ignore outside affairs. Few things aside from the chance to practice what they learn can pry them from their studies. Many find themselves with a reputation as genius recluses. Few try to change this perception usually because it is both more than deserved and because they care little of what others think of them.

Though not impossible, every known Prodigal Son or Daughter is a student of either arcane (Wizard) or divine (Archivist) study who possesses sufficient drive to branch their talent off into another simultaneous field. The possibilities are incredibly varied. The truly studious mix both Wizard and Archivist fields into a single realm of unparalleled flexibility. Wizard/Sorcerers possess an unrivaled array of arcane might just as Archivist/Clerics and Archivist/Favored Souls do divine.

Prodigal Sons and Daughters who possess skills as Dread Necromancers and Beguilers are not unheard of, and though unorthodox, those who sport talents in the capabilities of the Bard appear from time to time. Though possible, the use of Druidism among Prodigal Sons is nearly unheard of. The martial natures of Duskblades, Warmages and Hexblades are inherently opposed to the studiousness required of a Prodigal Son, and largely ignored.


Hit Dice: d4

Requirements
Skills: Knowledge (any three) 11 ranks.
Feats: Skill Focus (any Knowledge)
Spells: Able to prepare 2nd-level spells, able to cast 2nd-level spells from any other class.
Special: Must possess a familiar.

{table=head]Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special|Spells
1st|
+0|
+0|
+0|
+2| Familiar Progression, Skim the Pages |+1 level of existing class
2nd|
+1|
+0|
+0|
+3| Expansive Knowledge |+1 level of existing prepared spellcasting class, +1 level of existing class
3rd|
+1|
+1|
+1|
+3| - |+1 level of existing prepared spellcasting class, +1 level of existing class
4th|
+2|
+1|
+1|
+4| Expansive Knowledge| +1 level of existing class
5th|
+2|
+1|
+1|
+4| Bonus Feat |+1 level of existing prepared spellcasting class, +1 level of existing class
6th|
+3|
+2|
+2|
+5| Expansive Knowledge |+1 level of existing prepared spellcasting class, +1 level of existing class
7th|
+3|
+2|
+2|
+5| - |+1 level of existing prepared spellcasting class, +1 level of existing class
8th|
+4|
+2|
+2|
+6| Expansive Knowledge |+1 level of existing prepared spellcasting class, +1 level of existing class
9th|
+4|
+3|
+3|
+6| - |+1 level of existing prepared spellcasting class, +1 level of existing class
10th|
+5|
+3|
+3|
+7| Expansive Knowledge, Bonus Feat |+1 level of existing prepared spellcasting class, +1 level of existing class[/table]

Class Skills:
The Prodigal SonĎs class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Decipher Script (Int), Knowledge (all skills, taken individually) (int), Speak Language (Int) and Spellcraft (Int).
Skill-points per level: 2 + Int modifier

Class Features

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Arcane Palms gain no proficiency with any weapons or armor.

Spells per Day: For every level except for 1st, A Prodigal Son gains new spells per day and an increase in caster level (and spells known, if applicable) as if he had also gained a level in the prepared spellcasting class to which he belonged before adding the prestige class. He does not, however, gain any other benefit a character of that class would have gained.

Each time a Prodigal Son gains a level, including 1st, he gains a new spells per day and an increase in caster level (and spells known, if applicable) as if he had also gained a level in another spellcasting class to which he belonged before adding the prestige class. He does not, however, gain any other benefit a character of that class would have gained. At 1st level, The Prodigal Son can apply this increase to any of the spellcasting classes he possessed prior to entering the class. For every level thereafter he must choose a spellcasting class aside from the prepared spellcasting class that also enjoys an improvement at that level.

Familiar Progression: Due to his nearly ceaseless scholarly study, the Prodigal Sons relies heavily upon his familiar to perform many things from clawing at the eyes of an enemy to fetching a certain gem heíd had his eyes on at the market. Levels gained in Prodigal Son stack with whatever other class he possesses that grants familiar progression.

Skim the Pages: So refined is the Prodigal Sonís mental retention that he can dedicate complex arcane formula and long divine scriptures to memory in mere minutes. It takes a Prodigal Son half the normal time required to prepare his spells for the day.

Expansive Knowledge: Countless hours of study have endowed the Prodigal Son with a massive array of knowledge that only the wisest of sages can rival. At 2nd, 4th, 6th, 8th and 10th levels he may choose any Knowledge skill with which he is proficient and apply a bonus to it equal to his Prodigal Son class level. This bonus scales as he gains levels in this prestige class.

Bonus Feats: At 5th and 10th level the Prodigal Son strengthens the familiar upon which he is so reliant. These bonus feats must be drawn from the limited list of feats below. A Prodigal Son must still meet all prerequisites for a bonus feat.

Bonus Feats: Bonded Familiar (PHB2), Combat Familiar (PHB2), Lurking Familiar (PHB2), Spell-Linked Familiar (PHB2), Stitched Flesh Familiar (LM)


Playing a Prodigal Son
Adaptation: Prodigal Sons and Daughters are most effective when used to combine pure spellcasting classes. A Wizard and Archivist would clearly be the most obvious combination as it allows the casting of nearly any spell in the game and relies mostly upon the same attribute. The requirement of a familiar (unless Iíve missed one) is limited to Wizard, Sorcerer, Dread Necromancer (level 7) and Hexblade (level 4). Unless one of these classes is taken in conjunction with an Archivist a feat must be burned on Obtain Familiar.

Combat: A Prodigal Son or Daughterís low HD makes him a fragile combatant at home on the back line where he can cast his spells. Their dual-casting capabilities give them the potential for unparalleled versatility and allow them to persist for more fights than the average single-progression spell-caster. The benefits they give their familiars allow them to play a more active role in battle, particularly if theyíre of a hardier stock.

Soilborn
2011-02-15, 11:39 PM
Anybody want to provide some input? Anybody?

Frog Dragon
2011-02-16, 04:48 AM
Seems badly underpowered. High prerequisites, so you have to be level 8 to enter. Then, after that, you still don't even get full progression. As it stands, it's a worse mystic theurge. It needs to have more and worthwhile class features, less prerequisites, and generally not fall into the "yay, I have two different spellcasting classes on a level that sucks compared to any pure caster!" trap.

Of course, you could get into this from Mystic Theurge, but it still doesn't excuse the two lost caster levels from one side. This isn't overpowered. This is a bad option for even theurges.

JoshuaZ
2011-02-16, 03:43 PM
Prodigal and prodigy are not the same thing. Prodigal means wasteful.

Jayabalard
2011-02-16, 04:03 PM
Anybody want to provide some input? Anybody?The name was chosen ... poorly.

I have a feeling that you're going for something like "child prodigy" ... but Prodigal means "spendthrift". The prodigal son (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parable_of_the_Prodigal_Son) is the one that is given his inheritance and then throws it away on wild living (prostitutes, wine, etc).

Darth Stabber
2011-02-16, 04:06 PM
Losing that many caster levels is wasteful:P I keed, I keed.

Seriously you need theurge level dual progression or better.

Soilborn
2011-02-16, 04:17 PM
*checks his dictionary.*

Whoops. Um, yeah. Everything about this class is pretty void at this point. I'm already in the midst of a complete restructuring, and I went on to confuse the word prodigal with prodigious, and even that adjective isn't quite apt. It kind of shows the haste with which I threw this class out.

Thanks for pointing out these flaws. I'm just going to let this thread die out. The replacement is going to be modified to the point of being completely different, so there's little reason to let this one persist.

Benly
2011-02-16, 04:18 PM
The caster progression is similar to Ultimate Magus, so it's not an unmanageable progression. The thing is, Ultimate Magus gives you class features in exchange for those lost casting levels. This gives you.. some bonuses to knowledge checks, I guess?