View Full Version : Evolved Characters and Monsters [PEACH]

2011-05-29, 01:57 AM
I really like how Pathfinder handled the Eidolons, the evolutions in particular. Gave a lot of flexibility and seemed all in all fairly well balanced. This system is an attempt to build on that to help streamline and balance things like custom monsters and templates, monster PCs, polymorphing and summoning, and so on. It also includes some options for simply expanding the options open to normal classed PCs, using the tier system as a guide to hopefully help close the gap between the classes (slightly, at least).

Balance is a goal for this system, but at the end of the day, it does expand character options and make it much easier to get abilities that characters might otherwise have to jump through hoops to acquire. I think that's a good thing, but it definitely makes this a high-powered variant.

General Rules/Terms

Limiting Factor: All characters who acquire evolutions also have a Limiting Factor, dependent on the method of acquirement. A character's Limiting Factor determines how powerful individual evolutions can be. A character cannot purchase an evolution with an EP cost greater than two times its Limiting Factor.

Upgrades: Some evolutions can have additional points spent on them or be purchased multiple times to make the evolution stronger. These sorts of enhancements to an evolution are called upgrades. The additional cost of upgrades counts for purposes of determining whether or not the total cost of the evolution exceeds the character's maximum. In addition, a given evolution cannot be upgraded more than once per point of the character's Limiting Factor. Some evolutions are referred to as Stacking Limited, and can only be upgraded a number of times equal to half the character's Limiting Factor. Some are referred to as Stacking Unlimited, and can be upgraded an unlimited number of times and do not have a point cost maximum.

Duplications: Some evolutions can be purchased multiple times to use the evolution in different ways. These sorts of enhancements are called duplications. Duplications count as separate evolutions for purposes of how many points they can cost or how many upgrades they can have. A character cannot have more than one duplication of a given evolution per point of its Limiting Factor. The original purchase of the evolution does not count against this limit. If you have purchased upgrades that could affect multiple versions of this Evolution, they apply to all appropriate duplications, unless the duplication is marked as upgrade independent, in which case each must be upgraded separately (but each duplication has its own EP and upgrade limits).

Potent Evolutions: Some evolutions can substantially alter the nature of a low-level game. These evolutions are marked with asterisks. PCs generally should not have access to these evolutions until sixth level. While NPCs can, the DM should consider carefully before sending NPCs with these evolutions against a lower-level party.

Limitations: Evolutions with a notable limitation on their use generally have a 1 EP reduction in cost, to a minimum of 1 EP. The DM may allow a larger reduction for more significant restrictions.

Suppressible Evolutions: An evolution can be made suppressible - able to be turned off and on as a free action - by adding a 1 EP surcharge. This surcharge does not count towards maximum EP or upgrade limits.

Gaining Evolutions

All characters begin with 0 EP and a Limiting Factor of 2. Evolutions and Limiting Factor can be gained by levels in various ways - the less a level offers in and of itself, the more evolution points its provides.

Evolutions by LA: A Level Adjustment is the fastest way to gain Evolution Points and increase one's Limiting Factor - in essence, it's spending a level entirely on getting evolutions. Each point of LA provides 15 EP. Each two points of LA increases the character's Limiting Factor by 1. For example, an LA 4 character has 60 EP to spend, could spend up to 8 EP on a given evolution, could upgrade an evolution up to four times, and could duplicate an evolution up to four times.

Since this system provides substantial customization (and thus optimization) options, it is suggested that it not be used alongside LA Buyoff rules, or other variants that reduce LA.

Evolutions by Monster Class: With this option in play, characters can take levels in monster classes - that is, the typical HD type for that kind of monster - and gain evolutions rather than class features. The rate of progression depends on the monster type as follows. Limiting Factor increases by 1 per 3 levels.

Evolutions gained through monster classes can be spent to gain additional HD at the rate of 6 evolutions per HD. This does not increase appropriate WBL, EP, Limiting Factor, ECL, or CR. Other effects based on HD, such as BAB, saves, skill points, max skill ranks, feats, and ability increases, all increase normally from these bonus HD.

This method can also be used to build custom monsters, building them as normal characters using monster classes for most or all of their levels (although class levels and LA can also be used). Simply add up monster levels, class levels, and LA to get the monster's CR. For example, a demon with 16 Outsider levels and an LA of 4 would have a BAB of +16, 16d8 HD, 152 base skill points, base saves each at +10, 124 EP, a Limiting Factor of 9, and a CR of 20. It could also spend up to 64 of its EP to gain additional Outsider HD rather than evolutions.

Custom monsters created in this way should have their base ability scores generated as non-elite NPCs do in the campaign. If using the Evolutions by Character Class option, custom monsters should either be given gear appropriate to NPC wealth for their level, or increase the EP gained for their monster HD by 25% (to 5, 10, or 15 per level), to assure they remain competitive with classed NPCs.

Aberration: 12/Level.
Animal: 12/Level.
Construct: 8/Level.
Dragon: 4/Level.
Elemental: 12/Level.
Fey: 12/Level.
Giant: 12/Level.
Humanoid: 12/Level.
Magical Beast: 8/Level.
Monstrous Humanoid: 8/Level.
Ooze: 8/Level.
Outsider: 4/Level.
Plant: 8/Level.
Undead: 8/Level.
Vermin: 12/Level.

Evolutions by Character Class: To expand the options of PCs, especially the less naturally powerful classes, the DM can allow characters to gain EP through class levels. This system assigns EP and rate of Limiting Factor growth based on JaronK's Tier System, assigning more EP and faster development of the Limiting Factor to less powerful classes.

Tier 1: 0 EP/Level, LF +1/10 Levels.
Tier 2: 1 EP/Level, LF +1/8 Levels.
Tier 3: 2 EP/Level, LF +1/6 Levels.
Tier 4: 3 EP/Level, LF +1/5 Levels.
Tier 5: 4 EP/Level, LF +1/4 Levels.
Tier 6: 5 EP/Level, LF +1/3 Levels.

Evolutions by Polymorph: Using this option, polymorphing effects are simply retooled to provide evolutions. A polymorph effect provides 1 EP per caster level, up to a maximum equal to the normal maximum HD the effect that provide. These EP are subject to an independent Limiting Factor equal to one-half the spell level, rounded up. If the effect does not have a spell level, the Limiting Factor is instead 1/4 the caster's character level, rounded up (note that the independent Limiting Factor from polymorph effects does not begin at 2).

Evolutions by Summon: Using this option, summoned and called creatures are custom-built by the caster, using monster classes. Rules for the two primary methods of summoning creatures - the Summon Monster/Nature's Ally and the Planar Binding/Ally/Gate spells are below. Technically, summoned creatures can be designed on the fly. In practice, the player should prepare, if not full stat-blocks, then at least mostly-completed templates, of any summons it plans to use before the session.

Summon Monster/Nature's Ally: Summon Monster can call creatures of the Animal, Elemental, Magical Beast, or Outsider type, with monster levels equal to the level of the spell and 1 LA. Summon Nature's Ally can call creatures of the Animal, Elemental, Fey, Magical Beast, Plant, or Vermin type, with monster levels equal to the level of the spell + 1. Summoned creatures have their base ability scores determined as non-elite NPCs, however that works in your campaign.

Planar Binding/Ally/Gate: These spells summon a monster of a level equal to the normal HD called. Creatures so called have their base ability scores determined as PCs, however that works in your campaign. They don't have magical gear, but receive free points of Level Adjustment equal to one-third the spell level, rounded down. For example, a Planar Binding spell can call a custom-built 12th level Outsider, with 78 EP and a Limiting Factor of 7.

Gestalt: The gestalt rules can be quite helpful when balancing such powerful creatures as dragons, which have excellent basic stats, several potent abilities, and spellcasting to boot. When using these rules in conjunction with the gestalt variant, "total EP" and "total Limiting Factor" are considered stats that can only come from one side of the gestalt.


Ability Increase (Ex) [2]: You get a +2 Enhancement bonus to a chosen ability score.

Duplication [2]: You gain a +2 Enhancement bonus to a different ability score. UPGRADE INDEPENDENT.

Upgrade [2]: Your Enhancement bonus for your chosen score increases by 2. This upgrade is normally STACKING LIMITED. You may ignore this distinction, but if you do, the bonus does not stack with inherent bonuses to the score or with the bonuses you receive every four HD (if this evolution would overlap with such bonuses currently in place, you may choose to redistribute them to different scores).

Additional Use (Ex) [1]: Choose an ability with limited uses per day. You may use this ability two additional times per day.

Duplication [1]: You gain two additional uses of a different ability. UPGRADE INDEPENDENT.

Upgrade [1]: You may use the chosen ability two additional times per day.

Automatic Maneuver (Ex) [2]: Choose one type of natural attack. Whenever you hit with that attack, you may immediately attempt a chosen Combat Maneuver. Success on the maneuver does not allow a new attack, even if it otherwise would (as with Improved Trip).

Duplication [2]: You may apply an automatic maneuver to an additional natural attack.

Upgrade [3]: You may apply an additional maneuver to your chosen natural attack. STACKING LIMITED.

Blindsense (Ex) [3]: You gain Blindsense out to 30'.

Upgrade [1]: Your Blindsense range increases by 30'. STACKING UNLIMITED.

Blindsight (Ex) [4]: You gain Blindsight out to 30'.

Upgrade [1]: Your Blindsight range increases by 30'. STACKING UNLIMITED.

Bonus Damage (Su) [1]: You deal +1d6 damage of a chosen common energy type per hit. You can alternately deal aligned damage, which does not affect those of the same alignment, or gain 1d6 Sneak Attack damage. Alternately, you can get a flat +2 bonus to weapon damage rolls.

You may choose a less common energy type by doubling the cost.

Upgrade [1]: You gain an additional die of bonus damage (or flat +2), which may be of the same or a different type. STACKING LIMITED.

Bonus HD (Ex) [5]: You gain an additional HD. This carries with it all the normal benefits of HD improvement - BAB, skill points, maximum skill ranks, saving throws, feats, and ability increases. You use your normal racial or class HD to determine the benefits gained (a multiclassed character uses whatever HD is most prevalent). It does not result in more EP, higher Limiting Factor, or the acquisition or progression of class features, save for those specifically based on total HD. These bonus HD also do not increase ECL, CR, LA, or other measures of total character power.

Upgrade [Varies]: You gain yet another HD. Each additional HD purchased costs 5 more EP than the last HD, so purchasing a total of two bonus HD costs 15 EP, three costs 30, and so on. STACKING UNLIMITED.

Bonus Feat (Ex) [1 or 2]: You gain a bonus feat. Most feats cost 2 EP, but feats that provide simple static or situational bonuses only cost 1.

Upgrade [1 or 2]: You gain an additional bonus feat.

Buff (Ex) [1]: You gain one additional hit point per hit die.

Upgrade [1]: You gain an additional hit point per hit die.

Burrow* (Ex) [3]: You gain a Burrow speed equal to half your land speed. You do not leave a hole behind, and can only move through dirt, clay, sand, and soft earth.

Upgrade [1]: You may choose to leave a path behind when you burrow, allowing allies to follow you.

Upgrade [1]: Your Burrow speed increases by 10'. STACKING UNLIMITED.

Upgrade [3]: You can burrow through wood, hard earth, and unworked stone.

Upgrade [6+]: You can burrow through any material with a Hardness equal to or less than 2 + the number of points spent on this Upgrade.

Climb (Ex) [1]: You gain a Climb speed equal to your base speed.

Upgrade [1]: Your Climb speed increases by 20'. STACKING UNLIMITED.

Constrict (Ex) [2]: Whenever you succeed a Grapple check, you deal damage from a chosen natural attack.

Damage Reduction* (Ex) [Varies]: You gain DR 10/magic (improving to 10/epic at epic levels), DR 5/alignment, material, or damage type, or DR 2/-.

Upgrade [2]: Your DR 5 adds "and magic".

Upgrade [4]: Your DR 5 adds "and" another DR 5 option.

Upgrade [2]: Your DR 5 improves to DR 10, but adds "or" another DR 5 option.

Upgrade [2]: Your DR increases by its base amount. STACKING LIMITED.

Upgrade [1]: Your DR increases by its base amount, but adds "or magic". STACKING LIMITED.

Energy Blast (Su) [3]: You can unleash a blast of energy at will as a standard action. This is a ranged touch attack that affects a single target in Medium range. The attack deals 1d6 damage per HD, plus effects as per the mage Energy Bolt power.

Upgrade [1]: Once per encounter, your attack affects everyone in a 60' line, with a Reflex save for half.

Upgrade [2]: Once per encounter, your attack affects everyone in a 30' cone, with a Reflex save for half.

Upgrade [2]: Once per encounter, your attack affects everyone in a 15' radius burst or spread centered on you, with a Reflex save for half.

Upgrade [3]: Once per encounter, your attack affects everyone in a 10' radius burst or spread centered in Medium range, with a Reflex save for half.

Upgrade [3]: Once per encounter, your attack affects one five-foot cube point of Limiting Factor, placed within Medium range, with a Reflex save for half.

Upgrade [2]: Area uses of your Energy Blast are selective.

Upgrade [2]: The damage of your energy blast increases by one die step. STACKING LIMITED.

Upgrade [2]: The area or range of your energy blast increases by 100%. STACKING UNLIMITED.

Upgrade [2]: You can apply an additional energy type to your energy blast (this upgrade also grants another type you can choose from, as per the Duplication).

Upgrade [1]: If you can affect an area with your energy blast, you increase the per-encounter uses of all area options by one.

Duplication [1]: You gain another type of energy to make energy blasts with. You choose which energy type (or types, if you have the multiple energy types upgrade) you use with each blast.

Enhanced Vision (Ex) [0]: You gain Low Light Vision OR Darkvision 60'.

Duplication [1]: You gain the other form of Enhanced Vision.

Upgrade [1]: Your Darkvision range increases by 60', or your Low Light Vision multiplier increases by 1. STACKING UNLIMITED.

Enhancement (Su) [1 or 2]: You gain an ability as if from a magical armor or weapon with a +1 enhancement value as an inherent ability. The EP cost is 1 for an armor enhancement or 2 for a weapon enhancement.

Duplication [1 or 2]: You gain an ability of the other sort (armor if you have weapon, weapon if you have armor). UPGRADE INDEPENDENT.

Upgrade [1 or 2]: You add an additional +1 value, which can be used to purchase a stronger ability or a different ability.

Extra Limbs (Ex) [2]: You gain additional pair of limbs. Additional pairs of arms allow you to wield additional weapons. Additional arms also provide a +4 bonus on Athletics checks to climb and swim, or on Maneuver checks to grapple. Additional pairs of legs give you a +4 bonus to resist Trip, Bull Rush, and Overrun maneuvers, or other effects that are affected by Stability. They also increase your land speed by 10'.

Upgrade [2]: You gain yet another pair of limbs. STACKING LIMITED.

Fast Healing* (Su) [4]: You gain Fast Healing 1.

Upgrade [2]: Your Fast Healing increases by 1.

Flight* (Ex) [2]: You gain winged flight, with a speed equal to your land speed. Medium or smaller characters have Good maneuverability, Large characters Average, Huge Poor.

Duplication [1]: You instead fly by means of magic. Your maneuverability becomes Perfect, and this ability becomes (Su).

Upgrade [1]: Your Fly speed increases by 20'. STACKING UNLIMITED.

Frightful Presence (Ex) [3]: You gain the Frightful Presence ability.

Gills (Ex) [1]: You can breathe underwater.

Immunity (Ex) [Varies]: You gain an immunity, chosen from the following list. These immunities are solid for what they are, but don't hold up well against piercing abilities; any effects that allows a check to ignore these immunities gets a +5 bonus, while effects that deal half damage through immunities instead deal damage.

Immunity to a specific status effect (stunned, sickened, frightened, poisoned, etc) costs 1 EP.
Immunity to a related group of status effects (fear, sickened/nauseated, stunned/dazed, etc) costs 2 EP.
Immunity to an energy type (fire, negative energy, holy, etc) costs 3 EP.
Immunity to a group of effects (free movement, death ward, charms, compulsions, etc) costs 4 EP.
Immunity to a broad group of effects (mind-affecting, true seeing, etc) costs 8 EP.

Duplication [Varies]: You gain an additional immunity by paying its point cost.

Improved Natural Armor (Ex) [1]: You gain a +2 Enhancement bonus to your natural armor.

Upgrade [1]: Your natural armor Enhancement bonus further increases by +1.

Incorporeal* (Su) [8]: You gain the Incorporeal subtype.

Leveled Ability [Varies]: You gain a Leveled ability. This is a spell, psionic power, invocation, martial maneuver, or any other type of ability that is grouped with other abilities that are given distinct levels. Leveled abilities cannot have a level higher than your Limiting Factor, or 1/2 your CR, rounded up, whichever is lower.

If the list of abilities the ability is drawn from has only six levels, treat the effective level as half again as high. If it has fewer than six levels, double the effective level (for example, a fourth level bard spell would count as a sixth level spell, while a fourth level ranger spell would count as an eighth level spell).

These abilities retain any type distinctions they normally have. Spells become spell-like abilities, psionic powers become psi-like abilities, maneuvers remain exceptional or supernatural, invocations remain spell-like, and so on. These abilities are each usable once per day. Additionally, any time you successfully complete an encounter, you recover your daily uses of all Leveled abilities.

Metamagic feats and similar feats can be applied to leveled abilities when they are chosen, permanently altering the ability and its effective level. In this case, you don't need to possess the feat in question.

You may not gain Leveled abilities that have special additional costs (expensive, unique, or priceless material components or focuses, XP costs, etc).

The EP cost of a Leveled Ability is equal to twice the level of the ability, except for maneuvers, which cost 1 EP per maneuver level.

At the DM's discretion, a character may also be allowed to gain Leveled Abilities of higher level than your normal limit (this option is suggested only for primarily utility abilities, and is best reserved for NPCs in most cases). In this case, the EP cost triples.

Rather than gaining the ability, you can improve an existing Leveled Ability, making it usable at will. This is only allowed for Leveled Abilities of half your maximum level or less, unless the DM allows otherwise (in which case, as before, the cost is tripled).

Duplication [Varies]: You gain (or improve) another Leveled Ability by paying its cost.

Mount (Ex) [1]: You can serve another creature as a mount.

Natural Attacks (Ex) [1]: You gain a single primary natural attack that deals 1d8 + Str Modifier damage, or two secondary natural attacks that deal 1d6 + Str Modifier damage. You may not use secondary natural attacks along with weapons or unarmed strikes. You may use primary natural attacks along with weapons or unarmed strikes, but they are treated as secondary.

Upgrade [1]: You gain an additional primary natural attack or two additional secondary natural attacks. STACKING LIMITED.

Piercing Attacks (Su) [1]: Your physical attacks overcome DR and Regeneration of a chosen type (so, magic, evil, fire, etc).

Duplication [1]: You may choose another type of DR and Regeneration to overcome.

Pounce (Ex) [1]: You gain the Pounce special ability.

Regeneration* (Su) [6]: The character gains Regeneration 1. You must choose two types of common energy (fire, cold, electricity, acid, or sonic), alignment components, materials, or damage types that cause lethal damage to you. Attacks from these sources ignore any immunities or resistances you possess. Immunity to nonlethal damage does not confer immunity to lethal damage turned nonlethal by your regeneration.

Upgrade [2]: The effects that bypass your Regeneration can be less common, such as force, positive energy, negative energy, mental attacks, etc.

Upgrade [4]: The effects that bypass your Regeneration can be very uncommon, generally being only available to a narrow group of beings or not commonly used as a weapon, such as Vile damage, gold, gemstones, or the like.

Upgrade [8]: The effects that bypass your Regeneration can be very rare and specific, the sort of thing that requires a specific quest, special circumstances, or a high price, such as wood from a tree struck by lightning, the fires of the volcano you were born in, a weapon blessed under the full moon by a circle of druids, a Wish or Miracle spell, etc.

Upgrade [2]: Your regeneration is only overcome by only one effect, rather than two.

Upgrade [2]: Your regeneration increases by 1.

Rend (Ex) [2]: Choose a type of natural attack that you have at least two of. For each two hits you score in a round with that natural attack, you deal additional damage equal to the base damage of both attacks + 1.5 times your Strength modifier.

Resistance (Ex) [1]: You gain Resistance 5 per point of Limiting Factor to a chosen energy type.

Duplication [1]: You gain the Resistance to an additional energy type.

Scent (Ex) [1]: You gain Scent.

Upgrade [1]: Your Scent range increases by 100%. STACKING UNLIMITED.

See In Darkness (Su) [2]: You can see normally in darkness of any sort.

Size* (Ex) [Varies]: You are a different size category:

Fine: 6 EP.
Diminutive: 4 EP.
Tiny: 2 EP.
Small: 0 EP.
Medium: 0 EP.
Large: 4 EP.
Huge: 8 EP.
Gargantuan: 12 EP.
Colossal: 16 EP.

Skilled (Ex) [1]: You gain eight ranks in a certain skill, you are still limited by your normal max ranks.

Upgrade [1]: You gain four additional ranks.

Duplication [1]: You gain the bonus to checks with an additional skill. UPGRADE INDEPENDENT.

Special Attack (Ex) [Varies]: Choose one of your attack forms. Whenever you hit with this attack, you may impose an additional effect or penalty as a swift action. This effect allows a saving throw of your choice to negate (the DC is 10 + your character level + your highest ability score). The EP cost depends on several factors. Special attacks cost a minimum of 1 EP each.


An attack that imposes a flat numerical penalty, or that imposes a condition that only causes flat numerical penalties, costs 1 EP. This penalty cannot exceed 2 + 1/2 the character's Limiting Factor, or a random roll with that as the average.
Any effect that causes more than a flat stat penalty costs 2 EP.
Any effect that would prevent the target from taking standard actions or from choosing its actions costs 3 EP.
Any effect that would render the target helpless or unable to take actions costs 4 EP.
Any effect that would give the character persistent control over the target costs 6 EP.
You may impose multiple effects, adding the severity values together.


One Round: 0 EP.
Multiple Rounds: 1 EP.
Minutes: 2 EP.
Tens of Minutes: 3 EP.
Hours: 4 EP.
Days: 5 EP.
Permanent: 6 EP.


Requires making a single attack as a standard action: -2 EP.
No save against the effect: Square the severity, and add 2 EP.
Successful save leaves the target immune for encounter: -1 EP.
Successful save leaves the target immune for one day: -2 EP.
Successful save leaves the target permanently immune: -3 EP.
Requires a touch attack: Double cost.
Does not deal normal attack damage: 3/4 cost.

Duplication [1]: You gain an additional special attack, which must have an equal or lesser cost than your main special attack.

Speed (Ex) [1]: You add +10' to all modes of movement.

Upgrade [1]: You add an additional 10' to all modes of movement. STACKING UNLIMITED.

Spell Resistance (Ex) [4]: You gain SR of 6 + your CR.

Upgrade [1]: You increase your SR by 1.

Stat Swap (Ex) [2 or 4]: Choose a single stat or three skills. You can substitute an ability score of your choice for another ability score as it relates to that stat or those skills. The cost is doubled if swapping a mental score for a physical score or vice-versa.

Duplication [2 or 4]: You make another stat swap.

Sustenance (Su) [Varies]: You are sustained naturally. You may choose one of the following benefits:

No Need Food: 2 EP.
No Need Water: 2 EP.
No Need Air: 4 EP.
No Need Sleep: 2 EP (must still rest to recover spells).

Duplication [Varies]: You may choose an additional form of sustenance by paying its point cost.

Swallow Whole (Ex) [3]: You gain the Swallow Whole ability.

Swim (Ex) [1]: You gain a Swim speed equal to your base land speed.

Upgrade [1]: Your Swim speed increases by 20'. STACKING UNLIMITED.

Telepathy (Su) [1]: You can communicate telepathically with anyone in 30' who has a language.

Upgrade [1]: Your telepathy range increases by 30'. STACKING UNLIMITED.

Upgrade [2]: As a full-round action, you can send a telepathic message of 25 words or less to a character you know the name of within ten miles per 30' of your normal telepathy distance.

Tough Hide (Ex) [1]: You gain a natural armor bonus equal to half your level.

Trample (Ex) [2]: You gain the Trample special ability, with damage as a primary natural attack.

Tremorsense (Ex) [2]: You gain Tremorsense out to 30'.

Upgrade [1]: Your Tremorsense range increases by 30'. STACKING UNLIMITED.

Turn Resistance (Ex) [2]: You gain Turn Resistance +2.

Upgrade [2]: Your Turn Resistance increases by 2. STACKING LIMITED.

Uncanny Dodge (Ex) [2]: You gain Uncanny Dodge.

Upgrade [1]: You instead gain Improved Uncanny Dodge.

Unnatural Aura (Su) [1]: Normal animals refuse to approach you unless its master can make a Handle Animal, Ride, or Wild Empathy check. The DC is equal to your Integrity, and you can oppose the check with Intimidate.

Weakness [-1+]: You have some special weakness, which gives you additional Evolution points. You cannot have more total points from weaknesses than twice your Limiting Factor.

Weaknesses do not provide a large amount of EP. In the case of PCs, the actual penalty of the weakness is not really expected to come into play; rather, the weakness is presumed to be something that restricts your options, gives your enemies a tool to use against you, and so on. Situations where your weaknesses will be brought into play are expected to be avoided. Basically, when you take a weakness, you are saying, "My character is likely to avoid/flee/circumvent these situations". The penalty is primarily a measure of how severely the character is punished for not doing so.

If the DM feels that an NPC's weaknesses will substantially affect the encounter, its CR can be appropriately reduced.

A weakness that doesn't appreciably hinder you in general play grants 0 EP.
A weakness that mainly restricts your options or role playing grants 1 EP. You may have no more than four such weaknesses.
A weakness that causes a minor mechanical hindrance (small check penalties, loss of hit points, etc) grants 2 EP.
A weakness that causes a serious hindrance (large check penalties, flat failure chances, loss of actions or resources, vulnerabilities) grants 3 EP.
A weakness that causes a major hindrance (auto-failing checks, loss of turns, loss of major abilities, crippling vulnerabilities) grants 4 EP.
A weakness that can prove lethal grants 5 EP.

Weapons Master (Ex) [1]: You may treat weapon attacks as unarmed or natural weapon attacks whenever beneficial.

Web (Ex) [3]: You gain the Web ability.

Evolution Short List

Ability Increase (2).
Additional Use (1).
Automatic Maneuver (2).
Blindsense (3).
Blindsight (4).
Bonus Damage (1).
Bonus HD (5).
Bonus Feat (1 or 2).
Burrow* (3).
Climb (1).
Constrict (2).
Damage Reduction* (V).
Energy Blast (3).
Enhanced Vision (0).
Enhancement (1 or 2).
Evasion (2).
Extra Limbs (2).
Fast Healing* (4).
Flight* (2).
Frightful Presence (3).
Gills (1).
Immunity (V).
Improved Natural Armor (1).
Improved Natural Attack (1).
Incorporeal* (8).
Levelled Ability (V).
Mettle (2).
Mount (1).
Natural Attacks (1).
Piercing Attacks (1).
Pounce (1).
Regeneration* (6).
Rend (2).
Resistance (1).
Scent (1).
See in Darkness (2).
Size* (V).
Skilled (1).
Special Attack (V).
Speed (1).
Spell Resistance (4).
Stat Swap (2 or 4).
Sustenance (V).
Swallow Whole (3).
Swim (1).
Tough Hide (1).
Trample (2).
Tremorsense (2).
Turn Resistance (2).
Uncanny Dodge (2).
Unnatural Aura (1).
Weakness (-1+).
Weapons Master (1).
Web (3).

2011-05-29, 06:00 PM
I haven't had time to run numbers of a lot of stuff, but for the Spell-Likes you may want to add in an extra cost for turning something with a duration to Continuous. A continuous Haste as Su that only affects you is 6ep. Foreverhaste available as early as your 3rd Outsider HD (assuming no LA), or 4th for a straight fighter is a little crazy. Hell, as a Spell-like its available from first HD in quite a bit.

Assuming my numbers work out right, of course.

2011-05-29, 06:48 PM
The spell-likes are something I'm fairly concerned about. I'd figure many will balance out okay, but I'm sure there are some that won't. I have a suggestion in there about limiting them until the character is at least level (2*SL-1), or basically, the level that a prepared caster would get the spell.

Probably the best thing to do, though, would be to make that not a suggestion, and step up the required level at least slightly.

And then, eh, see if there are any broad groups of spells that are significantly likely to be troublesome and need additional rules...yeah, I'll go back and see what I can figure out there.

Thanks for the input!

2011-05-29, 07:06 PM
I think the biggest part is really the duration. I'd say use the same sort of duration factors as custom magic items.

If a continuous item has an effect based on a spell with a duration measured in rounds, multiply the cost by 4. If the duration of the spell is 1 minute/level, multiply the cost by 2, and if the duration is 10 minutes/level, multiply the cost by 1.5. If the spell has a 24-hour duration or greater, divide the cost in half.

That way a permanent Haste, even reduced to Self Only, would cost
(3-1) [Spell Level] x2 [for 1-3rd] x4 [Rounds duration]
or 16ep (18ep for Su). I'd say 16ep for permanent Haste is actually probably spot on.

The other option, being able to cast it at will, would still only be 6ep (or 8 for Su), but it would require an action and have a super short duration, so keeping it up outside of combat is silly and any sane DM would smack you for it.

I'd also add in a caveat that you can't have continuous spells that have discharges and the other basic stuff like that which would go along with a Persist-esque ability. No True Strike all the time, and such. XD
I'm not sure what level Wraith Strike is, so I can't do the math on that one, but it also seems problematic.

I'm not sure on the 1/2 cost for spells already at 24 hours carrying over into this. On one hand, someone could just buy a 1/day version (or 3/day for paranoid types) and get the same benefit, but Continuous would renew if subjected to a dispel of some kind where the other wouldn't. Though, I suppose getting it 3/day for a wee bit more would probably be better than Continuous for Self Only, and the cost would represent that in most cases. So... it would probably be okay to include.

And no problem. I've liked the idea of the Eidolon since I first saw it, and none of the other efforts to use it outside of the Summoner class have been very promising. I'm terribly excited about this, and will probably be trying to use it quite soon.

2011-05-29, 07:32 PM
Eh...16 EP for permanent haste would require a Limiting Factor of at least 8. Really, the effects of haste could be emulated by...three doses of Fast, +2 Dex (sorta - you wouldn't technically get the +1 to hit without weapon finesse or a ranged weapon, but Dex gives more bonuses, so it's a reasonable analog), and...I suppose Limbs (Arms) is the most reasonable extra-attack analog. That's 7 EP, and gives a few side-benefits.

Thinking about it, I'm trying condensing the SLA and SLA List options into one, making it almost into a sort of spellcasting-light. I edited the original post with my first draft, but I'm going to need to mull over it and make sure it isn't offering too much. Run some numbers against actual casters and all.

And you are dead-on about True Strike and Wraithstrike. I can't believe I didn't think about the quintessential "This is why the custom magic item rules are guidelines" spell and the one spell that I truly consider hard-banned in my games (rather than the "Yes it technically exists but I really don't feel like rewriting it to work at the moment so let's just gloss over it" treatment that most of the problem spells get).

2011-05-29, 07:40 PM
Well, going with my haste example and the new system you have up there, I'll run numbers again, mostly for my own reference and clarity. [I assume "However, the character cannot have any spell-like abilities with a spell level higher than twice its character level - 1." is a typo, as that would mean that a 2nd level character could have spell levels up to 3rd, and a 5th level character could have up to 9th]

Pay 6ep and get Twice your limiting factor in spells. Lets assume 13HD and a limiting factor of 8 (just running numbers, if 13HD at LF8 isn't possible, eh, its an example). Thats up to 8th level spells and 16 spell slots, correct?

Haste is 3rd.
+2 SL for At Will or +3 for Continuous.
+1 additional for Su
So Continuous Haste is a 6th level spell, 7th for Su

In exchange for 4 of those 16 spell slots I would then be able to have an Su Haste up all the time?

Then toss on Upgrades for 8 additional Spell Slots for 8ep, for a total cost of 14ep and 20 unused spell slots?

2011-05-29, 08:09 PM
Yeah, just giving that a cursory glance told me it wasn't working either.

And yep, I messed up the spell progression equation real good. Reversed it completely I do believe. Should be half level + 1. Sigh. Basically, you can get a spell of a given SL at the same level as a wizard.

But even modifying it more and going over it, it's definitely too much. Going to have to kill the list idea, make each SLA purchased individually. Preferably in a way that still allows for powerful monsters with level-appropriate SLAs, without making it too easy for PCs. Hmm...

Going to have to think on that one a bit more.

2011-05-29, 08:31 PM
The Metamagic-esque route isn't a bad one. I kinda like it, actually. EP equal to effective spell level for 1-3, x2 for 4-6, x3 for 7-9, etc might work out.

Effective Level 7 for the Su Haste all the time would be 21ep, 6th for the Sp would be 12ep, 10ep for Sp At Will.

I'm thinking we should try to build a Blink Dog and see how close we can get.

Blink Dog has 4 Magical Beast HD and +2 LA
EP: 0 (Base) + 32 (RHD) + 30 (LA)
LF: 2 (Base) + 1 (RHD) +1 (LA)

This gives us 62ep to work with under a LF of 4.
Assuming quadraped without any of the free stuff except limbs, and 10s and 11s across the board.
DV 60ft, LL: Free to Magical Beasts
1 Bite: 1ep
+4 NA: 2ep
+6 Dex: 6ep
+2 Wis: 2ep
Track: 1ep
Blink: 3rd base, +3 Continuous, +1 Su. So... 21ep?
DD: 4th base, +3 Continuous (sorta), +1 Su. So... 24ep?
Scent: 1ep

58ep, which breaks the limit of cost on the SLAs pretty hard, assuming the metamagic-esque pricing system with the above suggestions.

For only being off by 4ep and having one higher NA, thats pretty damn close.

2011-05-29, 08:58 PM
Yeah, I like that. I was debating on using base SL to determine the multiplier (so a SL 3 with +3 modifiers would cost 12 rather than 18), but the Blink Dog analysis convinced me. Besides, with SLAs, as much room for breaking things as there is, it's probably better to err on the side of charging more. Will post the updated version in a moment.

2011-05-30, 02:27 AM
Still on the SLAs, I'm thinking your wording for maximum modified spell level is incorrect, if you intend to equal the spell levels of prepared casters. One half level plus one would come out to one spell level higher than a caster would have at the time on even levels. 13 halved would round down to 6, plus one for 7. 14 halved is seven, plus 1 is eight. One level ahead of prepared casters. I suggest one half character level, rounded up. That would mean that you'd have the same spell progression as a prepared caster. Unless, of course, you intend to advance faster than casters.

2011-05-30, 02:43 AM
I...cannot see why I cannot seem to get this stupid equation right. ::HEADDESK::

2011-05-30, 02:47 AM
It took me a half hour to try to present better wording, and even then its not really all that great. >.>

2012-12-27, 10:36 AM
I know the thread is very old, but I wanted to ask - is there an easier to understand version? The concept is brilliant!

2012-12-29, 08:59 PM
Huh, actually, I do have a more advanced version. I'm not entirely sure it's easier to understand, but all the evolutions are there, it has more clearly defined rules for multiple purchases, and there's substantially more evolutions. And it...might be slightly better balanced in some areas. OP has been updated.