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Realms of Chaos
2013-01-03, 05:51 PM
The Monk

Ah, the monk. What could I say about the monk that hasnít already been said a hundred times? Despite the cool (if somewhat scatterbrained) flavor and the ton of class features it gets, the class is still weak, unfocused, hobbled by the lack of magical arms and armor, and suffers from some serious MAD. Perhaps this is why tons of people have taken a crack at fixing the thing up. I myself have looked over a good many fixes in the past and Iíve seen stuff that Iíve liked and havenít liked but apart from my somewhat gimmicky Ascendant (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=164099), I havenít really ever taken a crack at the monk myself. As the forums seem to be in the midst of a monk-renaissance, however, this seemed like a perfect time to take a look at the class and see what I could do with it. Hereís what I aimed to do:

1. Give the monk a role in combat
2. Help handle MAD without just giving the class SAD. I know that quite a few monk fixes have simply tied everything to Wisdom so players could focus on cranking it up through the roof but Iíve never been a real fan of SAD so Iím seeing what I can do without it.
3. Give the monk a small selection of decently powerful abilities (including most of the checklist of things we expect from high-level characters) without turning the monk into a caster or using ToB
4. Hopefully attain tier 3 (though high tier 4 is still a happy place to be).

Iím just about out of things to say so hereís the class.

Alignment: Any
HD: d8
Class Skills: Balance (Dex), Climb (Str), Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Escape Artist (Dex), Hide (Dex), Jump (Str), Knowledge (arcana) (Int), Knowledge (religion) (Int), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Perform (Cha), Profession (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis), Spot (Wis), Swim (Str), and Tumble (Dex).
Skill Points Per Level: 6 + Int Modifier

Notes & Explanation:Yeah, Iím in the camp that thinks that the monk needs more skill points. Itís not that I think that monks are inherently skill-monkeys but rather a simple necessity, more often than not. With the MAD that monks face, intelligence becomes a dump stat for most monks (Kung Fu Genius notwithstanding) and few can afford anything other than the basic maneuverability skills that most people think of when they think of (eastern) monks.

The Monk
{table=head]Level|Base Attack <br /> Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special|Combat Style |Peerless Grace |Unarmed Damage

1st|
+0|
+2|
+2|
+2|Flurry of Blows, Ki Pool, Peerless Grace, Unarmed Strike|0|+10 ft.|1d6

2nd|
+1|
+3|
+3|
+3|Combat Style, Evasion|1|+10 ft.|1d6

3rd|
+2|
+3|
+3|
+3|Sense Void, Still Mind|1|+20 ft.|1d6

4th|
+3|
+4|
+4|
+4|Chasing Perfection, Empty Stride|1|+20 ft.|1d6

5th|
+3|
+4|
+4|
+4|Diamond Body|1|+30 ft.|1d8

6th|
+4|
+5|
+5|
+5|Uncanny Dodge|2|+30 ft.|1d8

7th|
+5|
+5|
+5|
+5|Wholeness of Body|2|+40 ft.|1d8

8th|
+6/+1|
+6|
+6|
+6|Flowing Approach|2|+40 ft.|1d8

9th|
+6/+1|
+6|
+6|
+6|Diamond Mind|2|+50 ft.|1d10

10th|
+7/+2|
+7|
+7|
+7|Improved Evasion|3|+50 ft.|1d10

11th|
+8/+3|
+7|
+7|
+7|Diamond Tongue|3|+60 ft.|1d10

12th|
+9/+4|
+8|
+8|
+8|Abundant Step|3|+60 ft.|1d10

13th|
+9/+4|
+8|
+8|
+8|Diamond Soul|3|+70 ft.|2d6

14th|
+10/+5|
+9|
+9|
+9|Improved Uncanny Dodge|4|+70 ft.|2d6

15th|
+11/+6/+1|
+9|
+9|
+9|Diamond Resilience|4|+80 ft.|2d6

16th|
+12/+7/+2|
+10|
+10|
+10|Unbound Stride|4|+80 ft.|2d6

17th|
+12/+7/+2|
+10|
+10|
+10|Touch of Eternity|4|+90 ft.|2d8

18th|
+13/+8/+3|
+11|
+11|
+11|Empty Body|5|+90 ft.|2d8

19th|
+14/+9/+4|
+11|
+11|
+11|Diamond Essence|5|+100 ft.|2d8

20th|
+15/+10/+5|
+12|
+12|
+12|Perfect Self|5|+100 ft.|2d8 [/table]

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, Shortbows, siangham, sling, and unarmed strikes.

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 peerless grace and flurry of blows abilities. Similarly, while wearing armor or using a shield, you lose all armor or shield enhancements (respectively) gained from your chasing perfection class feature.

Ki Pool: As a monk, you possess a wellspring of spiritual energy that you can use to power some of your class features. At any time, you may possess a number of ki points up to 3 + half of your class level + one fourth of all other HD you possess, rounded down. After resting for 8 hours, you may spend 1 hour in meditation to regain all spent ki points. So long as you possess at least one point of ki in your pool, you may add your Wisdom modifier (minimum +0) to your AC if you are unarmored and carry no more than a light load. You retain this bonus while flat-footed, but not when helpless. Unless specifically mentioned, all abilities activated by spending Ki points are supernatural and they do not stack with themselves.

Notes and Explanation:One thing that I loved from the Pathfinder Monk class was the use of a ki pool. As the rest of the AC boost is coming from another source, I decided that this was the best and most organic way to plug in the traditional Wisdom bonus to AC.

Trying to think of how Iíd implement the ki pool was hard, though. After reviewing several different recharge methods (ranging from the daily recharge above to meditation at any time to regain them to per-encounter uses) and different pricing schemes for abilities, this is what I ended up hitting upon.

Right now, every single other class feature can use ki points for some sort of benefit. The supply of ki that you get, however, remains small throughout your career and you can only reset your ki with a long rest. With that said, most of the ki benefits are either things youíd want in the heat of the moment (such as immunity to something youíve been exposed to) and/or last the entire encounter. Combining the long-lasting/situational effects with tons of swift action activations (stopping the monk from going nova), ki conservation becomes a real task but you shouldnít always be eking by after the first couple of levels. At the same time, the limitation on ki supply (in my opinion) gives a level of depth to an otherwise relatively passive class without making the class all about those abilities all the time.

Unarmed Strike: You possess great skill with unarmed combat, allowing you to deliver lethal strikes with any part of your body and to deliver multiple strikes in quick succession. You gain Improved Unarmed Strike as a bonus feat. Your unarmed attacks may be made with either fist interchangeably or even from elbows, knees, and feet. This means that you can make unarmed strikes with your hands full. There is no such thing as an off-hand attack for a monk striking unarmed. You may thus apply your full Strength bonus on damage rolls for all of your unarmed strikes.

Your unarmed strikes usually deal lethal damage but you can choose to deal nonlethal damage instead with no penalty on your attack roll. You have the same choice to deal lethal or nonlethal damage while grappling.

Your unarmed strike is treated both as a manufactured weapon and as a natural weapon for the purpose of spells and effects that enhance or improve either manufactured weapons or natural weapons (such as the magic fang and magic weapon spells).

You also deal more damage with your unarmed strikes than a normal person would, as shown on the table above. If you pay a ki point as a swift action, you may treat your monk level as being 4 higher and your unarmed strikes count as magical for the purpose of overcoming damage reduction and harming incorporeal creatures for 5 rounds or until the end of the encounter, whichever comes last. A Small monk deals less damage and a Large monk deals more as indicated on the table below.

{table=head]Level|Small Monk|Large Monk

1-4|1d4|1d8

5-8|1d6|1d10

9-12|1d8|2d6

13-16|1d10|2d8

17-20|2d6|2d10[/table]

Notes and Explanation:I havenít done too much here. Small monks are effectively 4 levels weaker while Large monks are 4 levels stronger, making it easy to trace your advancement if you change size. Overall damage is slightly lower, though monks now have an extra source of damage below in flurry of blows. The ki ability here is basically an easy way to somewhat boost your damage and overcome incorporeality or simple DR. If you raise your effective level above 20 with the ki ability, medium monks deal 2d10 damage while small monks deal 2d8 and large monks deal 3d6.


Peerless Grace (Ex): As a monk, you have taught yourself to move with unmatched speed and agility while unarmored and carrying no more than a light load. You gain an enhancement bonus to your speed for all forms of movement you possess, as shown on the table above. If you pay a ki point as an immediate action, the enhancement bonus is increased by +20 for 5 rounds or until the end of the encounter, whichever comes last.

With this enhanced speed comes greater agility and grace. For every +10 feet of enhancement bonus you receive in this way, you gain a +4 bonus to tumble and balance checks and you ignore the first two dice of damage that you would take from falling. For every +20 feet of enhancement bonus you receive in this way, you also gain a +1 dodge bonus to AC so long as you are capable of movement.

Finally, your can use your skills at movement to fall back after attacks. Once per round, immediately after making a flurry of blows, you may move a distance equal to half of your enhancement bonus to speed. This movement provokes no attacks of opportunity from creatures attacked during the preceding flurry of blows.

Notes and Explanation:Warning: Tangent: As I said above, I wanted to give the monk a more definite role in combat. Following what most people seem to think of the monk (at least from what Iíve heard), I chose to make it into a skirmisher. Rather than meaning someone who runs up and hits you (like the scout class), however, I made these monks so that they can run into the battle, hit people, and effectively retreat before repeating the process. When things work as they should, a monk should be able to deliver good amounts of damage before falling back and letting the damaged opponent choose whether to make a full attack on a nearby front-liner or to chase down the monk to likely make a single attack (probably provoking an attack from the frontliner in the process). Iíve always felt as though every sort of combat other than straight-up melee combat has always been overlooked in 3.5 (just ask people who like ranged weapons) but I feel that I did this role some justice in allowing the tank to actually serve as a tank to some extent. As a final note on this role, the reduced number of attacks that most monks stand to face helps to reduce the importance of huge AC and hit points, a small step toward soothing the wounds of MAD.

and now to talk about the ability itself: This is a rather busy little thing, isnít it. I guess that I should go over it one step at a time, then. First, the speed bonus is notably higher. If you spend a ki point at 19th level or higher, you may well have a speed of 150 feet. While this is impressive, however, speed means relatively little unless youíre trying to escape and by the time youíd be fast enough to guarantee a clean getaway, a good portion of foes youíd face could simply teleport after you. The skill bonuses, though lower, were inspired by the ďdance with the elementsĒ class feature Jiriku put on his fix. The extra +5 bonus (potentially +6 now) from the monkís normal AC bonus are here now. Likewise, slow fall was simply improved and added into the equation (and is the reason why the ki ability can be used as an immediate action). While a lot of stuff, the last ability is probably the most important, basically granting a variation of spring attack and saving you from the normal AoO associated with running back away. While this ability is most certainly busy, I donít think that it could truly be called overpowered unless thereís something Iím missing.

God, that was long. Thankfully, the other notes arenít nearly as longÖ except for the next one, maybe.

Flurry of Blows When unarmored, you may use the full force of your training to strike with a series of blows. Whenever you make an attack or full attack (including attacks of opportunity), you may choose to make it a flurry of blows. When making a flurry of blows, your Base Attack bonus from levels in monk equals your monk level and you take a -2 penalty to all attack rolls. For each attack that your base attack bonus would provide you (up to a maximum of 1/5 class levels, rounded up), however, you may make an extra attack at that base attack bonus (these attacks need not target the same creature). Extra attacks from other sources (such as haste effects or two-weapon fighting) don't stack with these extra attacks. Finally, for each extra attack made in this way, all attacks made in the flurry of blows gain a +1 bonus to the attack roll and deal +1d6 damage (this effect stacks with itself). If you spend a ki point as a swift action, the threat range for all attacks you make as part of a flurry of blows are doubled for 5 rounds or until the end of the encounter, whichever comes last. This effect does not stack with others that increase threat range (such as the keen weapon property) When making a flurry of blows, attacks may only be made with unarmed strikes or with special monk weapons.

Notes and Explanation:Flurry of blows has returned, though with quite a few changes. So, letís review what it does now. As before, the flurry must be made unarmed or with monk weapons, need you to be unarmored, and gives you a -2 penalty to the roll. Kind of like the pathfinder monk, you use your monk level as your BAB.

Instead of giving you a single extra attack and another single extra attack later, I tried to make the ability grow organically by simply doubling the attacks that your base attack bonus provides (allowing for two attacks as a normal attack or AoO).

Furthermore, to overcome the traditional issue people have with the old ďflurry of missesĒ, you get +1 to your attack rolls and +1d6 damage to all attacks for each extra attack you make in the flurry (meaning that you have to choose the size of your flurry as you start the action). You aren't penalized, however, if you kill an enemy and run out of targets before you finish making all of the attacks (though if your first attack only kills a target due to +4d6 damage, you can't go back and say that it wasn't a full attack). With the help of these attack bonuses and damage bonuses, pushing your strength thankfully becomes a bit less of a priority for this class, again hopefully aiding the MAD. It should also be notes that these extra attacks do not stack with extra attacks from other sources, another new addition.

If you make all of your attacks against one creature as a Monk 20, your attack bonuses will be +24/+24/+19/+19/+14/+14/+9/+9 and each attack will deal 2d8 + 4d6 + Str bonus. With a modest Str bonus of +5 and a +5 enhancement bonus (see below), that makes for an average of 33 x 8 = 264 damage.

Evasive Dodge: Starting at 2nd level, you can avoid even magical and unusual attacks with great agility. If you make a successful Reflex save against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save, you instead take no damage. If you spend a ki point as an immediate action, you may move a distance up to half of the enhancement bonus to your speed from your peerless grace class feature every time you succeed on a Reflex saving throw within the next 5 rounds or until the end of the encounter, whichever comes last. This ability can be used right after succeeding on such a saving throw to get the movement immediately. Evasive Dodge can be used only if you are wearing light armor or no armor. You do not gain the benefits of evasion when helpless.

Notes and Explanation:When I said that all of the abilities had ki usages, I was not exaggerating. Still not much to say about this ability, however. Itís evasion with a bit of mobility thrown in.


Combat Style: Though monks act as martial artists, there is far more than raw muscle and speed to the way that they act in combat. You may select a number of combat styles from the list below equal to the number on the table above. Once chosen, they cannot be changed. That same value is used to determine the benefits of each combat style, though the value is limited to a maximum of your Wisdom bonus for this purpose. By paying a ki point as a swift action, the size of the value is increased by +1 up to 5 rounds or until the end of the encounter, whichever comes last. This ability temporarily grants you another combat style of your choice for an equal duration. For every 6 HD you possess from sources other than monk levels, increase the value by +1.

Combat Styles
Meteoric Fists: You may reduce the damage reduction or hardness of any target you attack with an unarmed strike by twice the indicated amount.

Find the Gap: You may reduce the total of the shield bonus, armor bonus, and natural armor bonus of any target you attack with an unarmed attack or monk weapon by the indicated amount.

Versatile Combatant: You add the bonus to all rolls made to initiate, continue, resist, avoid, and/or escape bull rush, disarm, feint, grapple, overrun, sunder, and trip attempts.

Weaving Stride: You add the indicated bonus to your AC against attacks of opportunity and against all forms of ranged attacks.

Weakening Barrage: You may apply the indicated value as a penalty to all attack rolls or to the AC of any creature you hit with more than one attack during a flurry of blows for 1 round.

Unshakable Resolve: You reduce all damage you would take from any source by the indicated value and add twice that value as a bonus to Constitution checks.

Vigilant Assailant: You add the indicated value to initiative checks and to the number of attacks of opportunity that you can make each round.

Zen Archery: You add the indicated value x 10 ft. to the range increment of all ranged attacks and to damage rolls made with such attacks.

Leaf in the Hurricane: If a creature is threatened by at least one of your allies, apply the indicated value as a penalty to attack rolls it makes against you.

Flurry of Movement: Enemies that start a round adjacent to you suffer spell failure equal to the indicated value x 5% until the end of the round.

Notes and Explanation:And now for a new ability and the closest to an SAD mechanism that the class gets. Seeing as pumping your Wisdom beyond 20 (or 22 if you charge this ability) wonít do much for you, wisdom is able to help out if your other scores are lacking while setting a ceiling of sorts on how much you really want to pump your Wisdom. As for the specific abilities, I donít really have too much to say. Iím not sure if flurry of movement might be a bit too powerful (even though itís barely more effective than deafness at full strength) so let me know what you think.

Still Mind (Ex): At 3rd level or higher, you gain a +2 bonus on saving throws against spells and effects from the school of enchantment. If you fail such a saving throw against an effect with a duration other than instantaneous, you may spend a ki point as an immediate action to delay the effect by one round before succumbing. This round does not count towards the effects duration.

Notes and Explanation:An old staple, now with the ability to actually come in handy every now and then.

Sense the Void (Su): At 3rd level, you gain the ability to roughly sense your surroundings, even if you are kept from sight. As a swift action, you can gain blindsense out to 5 feet/class level for 1 round. If you use this ability as a move action and spend a ki point, you gain blindsight out to half of that distance and the ability instead lasts for 5 rounds or until the end of the encounter, whichever comes last. As this information comes as much from your sixth sense and intuition as anything else, you may use this ability even if robbed of all of your other senses.

Notes and Explanation:Honestly, I must admit that I donít have too much of a sense of how powerful this ability is. The sight you get comes at a pretty limited range until youíre higher level but itís possible that I still went a bit too early (though I think that Iím probably fine). Feel free to leave your thoughts if you think otherwise, though.

Chasing Perfection: At 4th level, you start your pursuit of perfection in earnest. At 4th level and every 4 levels afterwards, you may permanently increase one of your ability scores by +1. If you spend a ki point as a swift action, you gain an additional +4 bonus to an ability score of your choice for 5 rounds or until the end of the encounter, whichever comes last. If you use this ability a second time, the first bonus vanishes even if it was applied to a different ability score.

Furthermore, you gain the ability to improve your body much as a magic item. You effectively gain the benefits of craft magic arms and armor, except that you can only enchant yourself and that there is no XP cost for doing so (though you must pay the normal cost in time and materials). At any time, you may enchant yourself as a suit of armor, a shield, and as up to two weapons (you may select which ďweaponĒ you are using with each unarmed strike, though the effects are not bound to any particular limb). Special abilities that physically separate an item from its wearer (such as animated, dancing, or throwing) or that alter the physical properties of an item (such as sizing and metalline) canít be added in this way. Only you may enchant yourself in this way and you need not provide the spells necessary to do so, though your effective caster level equals your monk level. You are incapable of enchanting yourself as other forms of items, even if you possess the relevant feats. For all other purposes, you follow the normal rules and restrictions of crafting magical armor and weaponry. By spending any number of ki points over the course of one hour of meditation, you may redistribute an equal number of points of enhancement bonus. Thus, you could change a +2 weapon into a +1 flaming weapon if desired. You may not switch enhancement bonuses from one item to another (turning a +1 weapon and +1 shield into a +2 shield, for example), however, and you can not change items with a flat cost in place of an enhancement bonus (such as shadow or slick).

Notes and Explanation:This class feature is probably my favorite out of all of them. First of all, it grants you regular ability boosts so that you can even things out sooner and gives you a larger boost if you ever need it. Secondly, it gives you the ability to effectively enchant yourself. As one ruling for this ability, Iíd say that the shield you craft for yourself, like your armor, are always in effect even if you arenít keeping one hand open to serve as shield.

Empty Stride (Ex): Starting at 4th level, you can move at great speeds even across otherwise treacherous terrain. You ignore all forms of difficult terrain that donít require skill checks or saving throws to pass through, though areas magically altered to slow movement still function. If you spend a ki point as a swift action, you can balance and walk across liquids and up vertical surfaces at your full speed for 5 rounds or until the end of the encounter, whichever comes last. During this time, the maximum height you can achieve with jumps equals your jump check result.

Notes and Explanation:Another more situational ability to secure your maneuverability. The ki ability in particular seems useful if you find yourself out at sea or in need of scaling a large vertical surface. And in case anyone was thinking to ask, I doubt that Iíll make a feat to let this ability carry over to mounts, no matter how awesome that horse mount would become.

Diamond Body (Ex): By 5th level, you possess control over your body, allowing you to resist almost all forms of disease and poison. You gain immunity to all nonmagical forms of disease and poison. By spending a ki point as a standard action, you may instantly cleanse yourself of any magical poisons or diseases you may be suffering from and you gain immunity against such effects for 5 rounds or until the end of the encounter, whichever comes first.

Notes and Explanation:Not too much to say, Purity of body and diamond body got kind of squashed together but everything should still be in order.

Uncanny Avoidance (Ex): Starting at 6th level, you can react to danger before your senses would normally allow you to do so. You retain your Dexterity bonus to AC (if any) even if you are caught flat-footed or are struck by an invisible attacker. However, you still lose your Dexterity bonus to AC if immobilized. If you spend a ki point as an immediate action, you may not only act in a surprise round but take a full round of actions within it. If you already possess uncanny dodge form a different source, you automatically gain improved uncanny avoidance (see below) instead, though you may not spend ki points on it until 14th level.

Notes and Explanation:Everything is ki-powered. This ability may be of somewhat less frequent use, however.


Wholeness of Body (Ex): By 7th level, your fine control over your own body allows you to repair your more grievous wounds. So long as you are at half of your maximum hit points or lower, you gain fast healing equal to your Wisdom modifier. By spending one or more ki points as a standard action, you can heal yourself further. You may heal hit points at a rate of 10 per point spent, ability damage at a rate of 4 per point spent, ability drain at a rate of 1 per point spent, or negative levels at a rate of 1 per two points spent. All ability damage or drain healed at a time need not be to a single ability score.

Notes and Explanation:Behold, the last use for a high wisdom score that this class has to offer. As a note, I had considered letting people do several types of healing with one action but I couldnít think of any wording that couldnít be construed as paying 2 ki points to heal 1 negative level and 2 ability drain and 8 ability damage and 20 hit points. With things as they are right now, however, it shouldnít become too much of a headache so Iím not in any great rush to fix this particular ability.

Flowing Advance (Ex): When you reach 8th level, you can charge in ways that others would scarcely believe. You may make any number of turns when charging, can incorporate jump checks, climb checks, swim checks, tumble checks, and balance checks into your charges, and can make a full attack at the end of each charge. By spending a ki point as a swift action, you can move as far as four times your speed and as little as 10 feet when making a charge for the next 5 rounds or until the end of the encounter, whichever comes last.

Notes and Explanation:Funny story about this ability. I originally placed it at 8th level before I decided to let flurry of blows set your BAB at your monk level, meaning that youíd have medium BAB and get your first iterative attack at 8th level. By the time I realized that the new change lets you get full attacks a full 2 levels before you could charge, I couldnít find a way to shuffle things around without causing something else that looked weird (such as uncanny dodge at level 8). Considering as it is only 2 levels, however, it shouldnít be too painful. As for what this ability does, it just allows you to charge and do so well (making your charges better than running if you pay ki).

Diamond Mind (Ex): Starting at 9th level, your mind is strong and disciplined enough to ignore certain forms of manipulation. You gain immunity to charm effects unless you allow them to affect you. Whenever you fail a saving throw against a mind-effecting effect with a duration other than instantaneous, you may spend a ki point as an immediate action to make one last attempt at freedom. If you do so, you may make a new Will save at the start of your next action against the same DC to end the effect early. You only gain this one extra attempt, however, and you cannot use this ability again if you fail on the second saving throw.

Notes and Explanation:Yeah, another mental resistance effect. The ki ability on this one canít be combined with the one on still mind, either, though things still likely work out as still mind seems better if you rolled high the first time while this seems better if you rolled low the first time.

Improved Evasion (Ex): At 10th level, your evasion ability improves. You still take no damage on a successful Reflex save but henceforth take only half damage on a failed save. Furthermore, whenever a source of damage would lower you below 0 hit points, you may spend a ki point as an immediate action to make a Reflex saving throw (DC = damage dealt). If you succeed, the damage is halved (if you would still be lowered beneath 0 hit points, this ability provides no further benefits). This saving throw is unaffected by this class feature or by your evasion class feature. You gain no benefit from improved evasion while helpless.

Notes and Explanation:Improved evasion, now with a defensive roll feature.

Diamond Tongue (Ex): Starting at 11th level, you can communicate with any living creature. By spending a ki point as a standard action, you can speak to any inanimate object within 100 feet as if using stonetell with a caster level equal to your class level.

Notes and Explanation:I have always been a fan of Tongue of the Sun and Moon and I finally found a good secondary ability thanks to Kellus.

Abundant Step (Ex): Starting at 12th level, you can pass through great distances with little more than a thought. As a standard action, you can teleport a distance up to your speed so long as it ends in a space that you possess a line of sight with. Alternately, you may use this ability by spending a ki point as a swift action.

Notes and Explanation:Abundant step at will with some faster teleportation hijinks thrown in. Seems pretty balanced on my end but let me know if you see something Iíve missed.

Diamond Soul (Ex): If you are 13th level or higher, you gain spell resistance equal to your class level + 10. So long as you are conscious, you may allow any number of spells to ignore your spell resistance. If you spend a ki point as a swift or immediate action, you may make a dispel check against any number of active spell effects on your person, rolling 1d20 + your class level against a DCs of the caster level of each spell effect to be targeted. Effects that arenít affected by dispel magic canít be affected in this way.

Notes and Explanation:I didnít change the primary ability too much, though the ki ability gives monks some way to handle spells that get through (if they werenít simply save-or-dies, at least).

Improved Uncanny Avoidance (Ex): Though few monks truly desire to be surrounded by foes, you can ignore the worst of this disadvantage if you are at least 14th level. You can no longer be flanked. This defense denies rogues the ability to sneak attack you by flanking you, unless the attacker has at least four more rogue levels than you possess monk levels. If a creature who would otherwise be flanking you attacks you, you may spend a ki point as an immediate action. If you do so, that attack targets both you and the creature opposite of you (even if that creature is outside of the attackerís reach).

If you already have uncanny dodge (see above) from another class, the character automatically gains improved uncanny avoidance instead, and the levels from the classes that grant uncanny dodge stack to determine the minimum rogue level required to flank you. You may not spend ki points on improved uncanny avoidance until you reach 14th level, however.

Notes and Explanation:As this monk isnít at his best when surrounded and kept from moving around, it only seemed right to give the monk some way to handle such situations at some point. Rather than working with the rest of the class features, improved uncanny dodge reduces the sting of being caught in a bad situation.

Diamond Resilience (Ex): By 15th level, your body is so strongly controlled that you can endure almost anything. You gain immunity to death effects and you no longer automatically fail saving throws on a natural 1, though you may still fail such rolls normally. Finally, you may spend a ki point as an immediate action to gain immunity to critical hits and death from massive damage for 5 rounds or until the end of the encounter, whichever comes last.

Notes and Explanation:Yup, another defensive ability. While the traditional monk stopped after diamond soul, this class still gets a couple of final additions.

Unbound Stride (Su): By 16th level, very little could ever hope to truly stop you for long. You gain the benefits of a freedom of movement effect at all times. You may also spend a ki point as an immediate action to either target yourself with a freedom effect at the start of the next round or to gain the benefit of an Air Walk effect for 5 rounds or until the end of the encounter, whichever comes last.

Notes and Explanation:Another ability that a mobility-based class seemed to be wanting. Not too much to say.

Touch of Eternity (Su): Starting at 17th level, your body seems to lose touch with the flowing of time around it. You take no further penalties to your ability scores for aging and you cannot be magically aged. Any such penalties that you have already taken, however, remain in place. Bonuses still accrue, and you will still die of old age when your time is up. Finally, you may pay a ki point as a swift action to become acutely aware of time, gaining an additional round of actions immediately after your current one. After using this ability, however, you cannot do so again for 1d4 rounds.

Notes and Explanation:Again, not too much to say. Itís timeless body with a small touch of timestop/greater celerity. The ki ability seems pretty powerful but the limited supply of ki makes me wonder if it is really as strong as it seems.

Empty Body (Su): By 18th level, your bonds to the mortal realm have slipped to the point where you can shake them off nearly at will. You may travel to the ethereal plane for as long as you concentrate on doing so. If you pay a ki point over the course of one hour of meditation, you can instead create an Astral Projection effect. Your astral form, however, is incapable of regaining spent ki points, though it can spend what you have remaining.

Notes and Explanation:This ability, however, seems quite strong. Astral Projection has always been a powerful effect. Iím not quite sure how the etherealness ability measured up. You canít really do too much on the ethereal plane but it still gives a good deal of maneuverability and unlimited ethereal travel isnít really a thing that Iíve seen before (outside of greater planeshift, I suppose).

Diamond Essence (Su): By 19th level, your essence is beyond the comprehension of most mortals and beyond the sway and detection of nearly all magic. You gain the benefits of a Mind blank effect at all times. Furthermore, you may pay a ki point as a swift action to gain the benefits of a Foresight effect for 5 rounds or until the end of the encounter, whichever comes last.

Notes and Explanation:And, at the last possible moment, one more defensive ability. One last mental defense (and probably the best in the business) with a small defensive option for those with ki to spend.

Perfect Self: At 20th level, you finally reach the pinnacle of perfection, tuning your body with skill and mystical energies until it has transcended the limits of mortality. You cease aging and your type changes to outsider, though you are still treated as being your old creature type when beneficial. Furthermore, you gain Damage Reduction 10/Chaotic and you gain a +2 perfection bonus to each of your ability scores. Finally, you may spend all of your remaining ki points (minimum 4) to imitate a Limited Wish effect with a caster level equal to your class level (save DCs are Wisdom-based). Unlike most supernatural abilities, you must still pay the XP costs for wishes made in this way.

Notes and Explanation:Okay, I suppose I lied. THIS is the last use for your Wisdom score if you use a wish and copy a spell with a save DC. Otherwise, this is a pretty tame ability with the normal ascension, decent DR, and a bonus to your scores if anything was still hurting.

Final Thoughts: For the most part, Iím pretty happy with how the class turned out. Even so, there are a few clunkier or less flavorful mechanics that might need a bit of assistance. Iím also getting the feeling that this thing seems a bit powerful for my tastes but Iíll see what all of you guys think before I hop back in there and make adjustments.


Changelog:
1/3/13
Specified that extra attacks from TWF aren't doubled by Flurry of Blows.
Clarified the wording of Leaf in a Hurricane.
Added necessary rulings to Chasing Perfection.
You may now switch enhancements gained through chasing perfection.
(Improved) Evasion and (Improved) Uncanny Dodge have been renamed.
The ki ability of flurry of blows no longer stacks with similar abilities.
Combat Styles has been clarified and zen archery now helps ranged damage
Abundant step has traded long-distance teleportation for swift action normal teleportation. All the better to flurry with.
Instead of telepathy, diamond tongue now lets you speak to objects.
Altered Flurry, Ki Pool, and Combat Styles to no longer hose multiclassing.
Altered Flurry so that there are no complicated numbers to keep track of.
Altered Empty Stride to allow for high jumps and Unbound Stride to allow for Air Walk.
Altered Zen Archery to allow for flurries.
2 more uses of ki pool so it's actually usable at 1st level
Wish from perfect self has become limited wish.
Flurry of Blows no longer stacks with extra attacks form any other source.

Amechra
2013-01-03, 06:15 PM
I like it, though you should probably specify that Unarmed Strike doesn't stack with Two-Weapon Fighting (which some DMs let you do with Unarmed Strikes.)

Because an attack scheme of +16/+18/+20/+22/+19/+21/+23/+25/+22/+24/+26/+28/+25/+27 for taking 3 feats is a tad excessive.

(That's 14 attacks, and gets a cumulative 91d6 dice of damage if you make all those attacks against the same creature. The average damage would be 441+14*Str, without any real optimization.)

Realms of Chaos
2013-01-03, 06:23 PM
Hmm... When I stated that only attacks gained from base attack bonus were doubled by Flurry of Blows, I had been under the impression that extra attacks from two-weapon fighting were included (though I may be wrong). I have just included two weapon fighting as a specific example of what is not allowed.

The question, then, is if even 11 attacks (12 with speed weapon) from a non-doubled TWF is too overpowered or not. Any thoughts? Should I just state that the doubled attacks don't stack with any other effect that grants extra attacks?

Vaynor
2013-01-03, 06:46 PM
Leaf in the Wind is a bit unclear in its wording.

Also, for Chasing Perfection, this needs a lot more explanation of how it works. Are you the only one able to enchant yourself? Do you need feats to do so? What is the limit on the enhancement bonus you can apply to yourself?

Overall, this class is very powerful. It gets a lot very quickly and is much better at being a monk than the standard monk is. I'd say it's a high tier 3, depending on how Chasing Perfection works. Not saying high tier 3 is a bad thing, but my initial disappointment in a 3/4 BAB was quickly replaced by a "holy crap!"

That said, I really, really like this fix. I think it's one of the best I've seen, as it keeps to the monk pretty well, not changing too much, but incorporating a lot of good ideas from other monk classes and giving them a much needed power boost in general. I would be very frightened to have a monk in melee range of me, and as their level gets higher it gets increasingly more difficult to keep the monk out of melee range.

Realms of Chaos
2013-01-03, 07:09 PM
Glad you like it, Vaynor. :smallsmile:

Clarified Leaf in the Wind and added what I think are the necessary wordings for Chasing Perfection, but do let me know if I've missed anything.

Vaynor
2013-01-03, 07:18 PM
Yeah, Chasing Perfection is a lot more clear now. They still need to pay the GP required to enchant an item as normal, correct?

Realms of Chaos
2013-01-03, 07:19 PM
that would be correct.

Vaynor
2013-01-03, 07:25 PM
Ok, then the ability works as I assumed you'd intended it to, I just thought the clarification might help.

One more question, normal rules for creating magic items allow for you to add bonuses, but there aren't any rules (in Core, that I can see) that allow you to remove bonuses. Since you can't just get a new hand, maybe there should be a way to remove an enhancement from yourself.

This is just an idea I had, but I was thinking that when they meditate to regain their ki every morning, they could also reassign their enhancement points by spending one (or a few) of their ki for the day. So, if they'd spent Xgp for +4 enhancement to their hands as a weapon, they could, in the morning, spend a ki for the day and make their hands +3 flaming weapons instead, or something similar. This would make the monk a lot more versatile, as well. This way they can't just change their enhancements willy nilly, but are still able to prepare for the day (such as switching to an energy damage enhancement that works well against an enemy they know they'll be facing, like a troll, much as a wizard would prepare specific spells for the day) and alter the benefits as it suits them.

Edit: Also, another quick thing. If the monk gains armor proficiencies from another source, it seems they could wear enchanted armor while still getting the benefits of Chasing Perfection. You might want to note in the proficiencies section that if they wear armor they also lose the enhancement benefits from Chasing Perfection.

Realms of Chaos
2013-01-03, 07:34 PM
Ok, then the ability works as I assumed you'd intended it to, I just thought the clarification might help.

One more question, normal rules for creating magic items allow for you to add bonuses, but there aren't any rules (in Core, that I can see) that allow you to remove bonuses. Since you can't just get a new hand, maybe there should be a way to remove an enhancement from yourself.

This is just an idea I had, but I was thinking that when they meditate to regain their ki every morning, they could also reassign their enhancement points by spending one (or a few) of their ki for the day. So, if they'd spent Xgp for +4 enhancement to their hands as a weapon, they could, in the morning, spend a ki for the day and make their hands +3 flaming weapons instead, or something similar. This would make the monk a lot more versatile, as well. This way they can't just change their enhancements willy nilly, but are still able to prepare for the day (such as switching to an energy damage enhancement that works well against an enemy they know they'll be facing, like a troll, much as a wizard would prepare specific spells for the day) and alter the benefits as it suits them.

It required a couple of clarifications but I like what you suggest and so it is up.

Kellus
2013-01-03, 07:46 PM
This is pretty great! It certainly is one of the best monk rewrites I've seen, and captures the essence very nicely; it continues to maintain your standard of excellence with class creation!

A few things I noticed on my first read through:

Evasion isn't clear whether or not you have to declare that you want to use the ki point before or after you succeed on the Reflex save for no damage. Also, this should probably be named something else, even if it's just "Agile Evasion" or something derivative like that, since one of the super strong points of the class/ability system is that when abilities have the same name, they do the same thing, even across classes.
Flurry of blows needs to specify that the ki threat range increase doesn't stack with other threat range increases.
Combat Style bonus isn't clear what it is, since the table just lists Combat Style, and has a number which increases every time that you learn a new combat style. Is that number the modifier you apply to the combat style? I have no idea. Also, the ki point benefit here is kind of underwhelming, I feel like doubling the bonus for one of your styles would be more enticing here without being overpowered, and would only become very strong at later levels when it should rightfully be character-defining.
Still on combat style, I'm actually really happy with the variety and usefulness of the abilities, they're almost all good without having any clear standouts other than Unshakeable Resolve being really good and Leaf in the Hurricane being not that great. Zen Archery seems to me to be a little useless as well, since range increments don't come up very much in most combats. If it also extended the range of precision-based damage beyond 30ft., it might see more use for interesting muticlass opportunities.
Chasing Perfection is beautiful.
The uncanny dodge ki bonus is appropriate, but as per my comment on evasion, I'd suggest naming it something else? Either that or specify at some point that the monk can use ki to augment these abilities even if he gets them from another source
Abundant Step's long-range teleport seems kind of out of left field for a skirmisher based class. I think a lot more interesting would be teleporting as a swift action or something similar using ki, which opens up the possibility for a teleporting flurry of blows?
If you're stuck on ki abilities for diamond tongue, how about the ability to temporarily commune with inanimate objects, such as with a stone tell effect or the like?
Empty Body is pretty awesome, I love ethereal stuff.

But yeah, this is awesome.

Realms of Chaos
2013-01-03, 08:09 PM
Thanks for the assistance, Kellus. :smallsmile:

The abilities have been renamed, Diamond Tongue finally has a satisfying effect, Abundant step allows for flurry fun, Flurry received a restriction I'd meant to put there in the first place, and Combat Styles should make more sense. Zen archery now adds to ranged damage and Leaf in the Hurricane is probably going to be left alone (it was designed for monks who wished to "defy their fate" and stay in the battle. If you position yourself well enough, after all, it's basically another AC bonus).

EditBecause the benefits of combat style are tied to your Wisdom score, doubling the bonus (and requiring 30 Wisdom for full benefits) wasn't really the idea. Instead, I think that I'll have it grant another temporary combat style.

Kellus
2013-01-03, 08:23 PM
Glad to be of assistance! The only thing I'm worried about is that not a lot of people will see this, since there are so so many monk fixes out there. But I have to say that this one is really nicely put together, it's definitely going to be my suggested go-to monk class for my IRL players from now on!

Realms of Chaos
2013-01-03, 08:56 PM
Meh, I considered a whole bunch of more bombastic names for the thread but all of them seemed gloat-ish or done to death. If you've got a catchy name, though, don't hesitate to share it. :smalltongue:

Amechra
2013-01-03, 09:22 PM
Honestly, I checked this because I saw your name on it; you tend to not disappoint.

I'm going to be adding this to the allowed classes in my coming campaign, because it's awesome. No doubts about that.

And oops, I misread Flurry of Blows. But still, 12 attacks is a lot, especially since they get a bonus to hit and damage for each attack they make.

Actually, does the boost to attacks against a single creature apply to attacks made as an AoO? Because if they do, anyone playing a Monk needs to invest in stuff to get AoOs for everything posthaste.

Realms of Chaos
2013-01-03, 09:50 PM
The bonus attack/damage does apply to Attacks of Opportunity but Flurry doesn't let you make a full attack as an AoO so you'd be restricted to a mere two attacks unless I'm missing something.

Amechra
2013-01-03, 09:59 PM
The goal is to get as many AoOs for the opponent doing anything as possible.

Stuff like Robilar's Gambit or Karmic Strike to make it so you can outright punish anyone for daring to try to hit you, or getting the Opportunist ability so you can get attacks of opportunity 1/round when your allies get one.

I like the new name, by the way.

Zman
2013-01-03, 10:09 PM
I like it. But, I think that Flurry of Blows is a bit much and difficult to track. Maybe a set bonus to all attacks based on the number of attacks, say +1/+d6 for each FoB attack. So at lvl20 he'd have +24/24/19/19/14/14/9/9 for 2d8+4d6+Str each.

I'd say is a moderately overpowered Tier 3.

T.G. Oskar
2013-01-03, 10:16 PM
Perhaps I might have missed it, but I'm sure I didn't.

The Monk is definitely built as a skirmisher, and it shows. However, I find some troubles with two points that are essentially ways to handle the same problem.

How do you deal with flying creatures, if I may ask?

From what I can see, the Monk lacks a method to achieve altitude (I don't mean flight, but you don't get enough bonuses to Jump checks to reach enemies at higher places), and you don't take advantage of your unarmed strike damage for dealing higher damage. From what I can see, the closest approach is standing still and using flurry of blows with a shortbow, hoping that you get enough bonus to attack rolls to hit and land the 1d6, and perhaps Zen Archery (adding your Wis to damage rolls and range increments). Also, from what I can fathom, flurry of blows and Zen Archery are independent of each other (the range increment for attacks when using Zen Archery doesn't apply to flurry of blows, and there's no indication that the damage from the combat style does apply when using a ranged flurry).

Also, the way Flurry is stated, it hurts. Unless you go full Monk, any dip on any other class WILL lower your BAB, even if it's a full BAB class. This seems to discourage multiclassing or entering into a PrC, not to mention the loss of combat styles and ki points (which doesn't provide a stacking option). This is a double-edged sword, because it promotes staying in the class (which isn't a bad idea) but doesn't help on multiclassing (something that is a bad idea).

Amechra
2013-01-03, 10:51 PM
Well, there are classes that stack with Monk for Flurry of Blows.

But I was confused with Zen Archery; it wouldn't be unbalanced to have let them just Flurry and use Zen Archery at the same time...

Realms of Chaos
2013-01-03, 10:53 PM
I like it. But, I think that Flurry of Blows is a bit much and difficult to track. Maybe a set bonus to all attacks based on the number of attacks, say +1/+d6 for each FoB attack. So at lvl20 he'd have +24/24/19/19/14/14/9/9 for 2d8+4d6+Str each.

I'll definitely take this into possibility into account as it seems pretty balanced.


I'd say is a moderately overpowered Tier 3.

Alas, this was what I had feared. It was made (to some degree) as a monk wishlist to be reduced back into manageability by criticism so I can hardly say I'm surprised, though.

What do you think sets it over the top as being overpowered, if I might ask?

Amechra: I'm afraid that I still don't follow. Attacks from one attack of opportunity won't make your next attack of opportunity more powerful so all that I'm seeing is an attempt to get a lot of double attacks (which is nice, mind you, but hardly seems as amazing as your making it out to be). Am I missing something here? :smallconfused:

Edit: As for why I stopped combining FoB + Archery, I guess that I figured that letting the class get its hand on all of that bonus damage while staying incredibly far away was kind of dangerous as this class can eventually run so fast from just about anything that most creatures would need to waste their standard actions teleporting just to get somewhat close, turning them into a pincushion and making the monk very much untouchable.

T.G. Oskar: Frankly, I'm convinced that enough jump check to reach high foes isn't a thing. Even with the +60 bonus that Jiriku's build gave, that's only an extra 15 feet of height and a creature with a fly speed of 60 and wingby attack (which isn't ridiculous) would need 30 feet of height to reliably reach. In truth, however, it feels like many people who speak about flying are to some degree referring to casters using at least mid-ranged spells from midair and I can't really imagine ANYTHING other than flight reaching that high.

As far as options, though this guy does have a couple. Teleporting into the air via abundant step is relatively safe as peerless grace cushions the fall. Likewise, it doesn't hurt as much if normal flying items are dispelled and I know that there is at least one armor enhancement (from the Eberron Campaign Setting, I believe) that would allow you to fly and can be applied through chasing perfection. If near a cliff, mountain, house, or so forth, the ki ability of empty stride allows you scale up to the level of a creature before leaping out at it (at least getting rid of the height problem). Empty Body could allow you to float up while ethereal before diving down onto a creature. Finally, though a subpar option, the shortbow has been added as a proficiency and any monk can spend 1 ki to get zen archery for extra range/damage.

As for actual flying, though, I admit that I missed that ability. One option I have at my disposal would be adding airwalking as an alternate ki ability to the freedom ability of unbound stride (unbound by gravity in this case). I guess that my question for you would be if this implimentation would be a) sufficient and b) early enough. If the answer to either is no, would you have any suggestions on how to improve?

As for the multiclassing problem, I must admit that I now have somewhat less disrespect for WotC's decision to stop multiclassing for monks. Monks have always been front-loaded to a great degree by necessity just to completely set up what monks are in the first level or two. In order to do so properly, however, monks end up even more front-loaded. While nothing that they get at first level is particularly "broken", the ability to snag all of it with a single level and never look back is a bit... ungh. This is particularly true because I wanted flurry to develop naturally instead of saying "you gain 1 attack at level w, a second attack at level x, a third attack at level y, and a fourth attack at level z". At the end of the day, I think that my problem may be that I don't think a 1-2 level dip into any base class should be relevant at 20th level and I'm not seeing any way to stop dips without "punishing" multiclassing in general. Do you have any suggestions?

Edit: I have just gone through and made a series of edits. Flurry of blows has now been fixed to no longer hose multiclassing and to simplify math as Zman has suggested while both ki pool and combat styles continue growing with nonmonk levels (albeit at a slower rate). The ki ability of Unbound Stride now allows for air walking as an alternative benefit to freedom and the ki ability of empty stride allows for much-improved jumping so weaker monks aren't helpless against fliers. How do things look now?

Edit Edit: What do you mean by not taking advantage of unarmed strike to deal more damage, T.G. Oskar? Do you mean using flurry of blows to improve ranged attacks? That would seem to be what context suggests but I just want to make sure. :smallconfused:

Edit x 3: Just realized what it was about Zen archery that had me so freaked out. For some reason, I have had it in my mind all day that the monk could move and make a full ranged attack in the same action. Just realized that isn't the case and that DR is still a problem so I took away the limitation on Zen archery.

Amechra
2013-01-03, 11:43 PM
Ah, I misunderstood your response; my original question was:

"If a Monk was to make a full attack with Flurry of Blows, and they hit with all of those attacks, and then they, later that round, made an Attack of Opportunity, would that attack of opportunity continue the bonuses from the Full Attack (so if you made two attacks in your full attack, these would get boosted as a third and fourth attack.)"

I thought you were answering in the affirmative. My bad.

Zman
2013-01-04, 12:01 AM
The ability to enchant your body for half price meeting the prerequisites automatically once of sufficient level is pretty powerful, though I seem to think fists of Brilliant energy with a full power attack Flurry would be fun(insert other power attack multiplier shenanigans here.) as a move action or charge, then stepping back for a standard attack retaliation. I think the monk should be allowed to enchant their body and unarmed attacks, but should pay full price for the enhancement. The ability to enhance ones body and unarmed attacks is huge, doing it for half price is just gravy.

The ability to move, full FoB an enemy to great affect, them skirmish away is vastly powerful and puts it even above what the better Melee classes can accomplish and I haven't even begin to figure out what could be accomplished with the proper Ki spending.

I think the wealth of options is great, but the power level could get a bit crazy.

Realms of Chaos
2013-01-04, 12:26 AM
The thing about the half price is that they are essentially just crafting magic items without paying an XP cost. Everyone crafting items does so for half market price so I'm not exactly sure why that is the sticking point of all things. :smallconfused:

Vaynor
2013-01-04, 12:50 AM
Keep in mind this process still takes a pretty long time, too.

Deepbluediver
2013-01-04, 01:37 AM
I'd be happy to trade PEACHes, here's my monk fix (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?p=14457756#post14457756) if you're interested. :smallsmile:

Skill Points: I could make the same arguments about the skill points for almost any melee class. Without more benefits from Intellect, I doubt anyone will be making a skill monkey from the monk. But more skill points are always nice. I'm just not sure how much overall effect they'll have on game, since it sort of raises the monk from struggling to merely competent.

Ki Pool: I definitely like a ki pool to power abilities, the only thing I don't like is the "So long as you possess at least one point of ki in your pool" clause. It seems like it just means you really have 1 less ki point than you think you do, or you need to be certain that whatever that last ki point is spent on will end all encounters for the day because if not the hefty penalties will cripple you.

Peerless Grace: I like how you neatly combined several abilities into one. The ability to retreat after attacking is nice, basically giving Spring Attack as a class feature.
I worry that the +4 bonus to checks might a little high for what it costs and how high it stacks, but since none of those abilities are typically gamebreaking I guess it's not an issue.

Flurry of Blows: Most of what you did is very good, but I wonder if there is ever a situation in which the monk DOESN'T want to use FoB? Combined with Peerless Grace it seems like the monk's special attack is far more effective than ever making normal attacks.
There's two other things you might want to think about: this version doesn't help standard actions as much, since you never get more than 1 normally and there isn't much change to stack up the bonus.
Secondly: keeping track of and rolling all those d6's is way harder than just adding an additional +2. Maybe use a larger dice and just not have them stack so much.

Combat Styles: These are nice, some of them effectively replace (and/or improve on) the feats which seem to have gone missing from your fix.
Without more testing, I really only see problems with two-
Unshakeable resolve: damage does not usually scale linearly, and by the upper levels 4 or 5 points of DR is pretty "meh" unless you are up against hordes of ankle biters.
Flurry of Movement: If the monk's stated goal is to dodge in an out of combat, how often will he start a turn standing next to an enemy?

Still Mind: Ok, gonna rant a bit here. Do we really need to pick on enchantment any more? It already suffers from several types of mind-immune enemies and it's one of the most common schools to get anti-whatever abilities for. I would suggest looking for something more interesting; necromancy for example.
Fluff it so that the monk's connection with and devotion to life is so strong they have a natural resistance against necromancy.

Sense the Void: Blindsense isn't a very strong ability, IMO, since you still have a 50% miss chance from the concealment. Blindsight is notably better, but it's usefullness depends on how much your DM likes you/hates your party. If your group has a way to dispell invisibility then it's pointless, if they don't then the DM is just being mean to the rest of the party. It's the kind of thing that makes for a memorable encounter once, and then just get's annoying as the wizard tries to make listen checks to figure out where to shoot fireballs.
And if your party doesn't usually fight in the dark or against invisible enemies then it's basically a dead level.
Final verdict: flavorful, but doubtful as to it's overall level of power.

Chasing Perfection: This can certainly help's the monk's MAD; the only negative thing I can think of is that the +4 bonus is very static. It's probably large enough to never be considered pointless, but +4 at level 4 does not have the same impact as +4 at level 15. What about making it 2+ your combat-style value?

Empty Stride: Very thematically appropriate. I like the ability to get Spider Climb AND Water Walk for a ki point, but since the monk isn't wearing any armor (and hence no ACP) it seems unlikely they will want to expend a ki point for the boost when not in a combat situation.
The abilities are certainly useful in the right environment, but still seem to fall behind when compared to a good all-purpose Fly spell.

Diamond Body: The ability to expend a ki point and cure yourself of poison or disease is a nice addition; I may steal that :smallwink:
I feel like their should be some kind of check involved though, since as written it seems like the monk shrug off a plague crafted by the diety of disease himself; though maybe that was the intent.

Wholeness of Body: The fast healing is definitely nice, but again, I worry that the limited size of the monk's ki pool will cramp the other functions.

Diamond Tongue: This isn't a complaint against the monk, precisely, but what does "communicate" really mean? Particularly with regards to nonsentient creatures. For example, I can "communicate" with an oak tree, but if an oak has no eyes, ears, mouth, brain, etc, what can it tell me? I would rather see some specific buffs or abilities, like a bonus to Bluff, Diplomacy, Intimidate, Sense Motive (if speaking is involved) and maybe Perform (Singing) checks, since Charisma is usually a dump stat for monks and they can use some help in this area.

Abundant Step: Being able to do this more than once a day is a good improvement, but I am inherently wary of anything that can be done at will.
I alsommight limit it by saying that if the monk can't see where he wants to teleport too, he needs to be very familiar with the area (such as having lived there for a period of time) and if not then he takes of chance of teleporting in a random direction, rather than just having passed through once.

Perfect Self: If you have "transcended the limits of mortality" then why do you still die of old age?
If you are still treated as your original creature type, why benefit does being an outsider confer? Would it be easier to just say you get Darkvision and don't need to sleep or eat?
Also, combined with the point from the earlier "perfection" ability, you get a permenant net boost to your Basic abilities of +13 all at one go.
And then there's Wish.
If any of the lower level abilities where lacking, I would say this certainly makes up for them, but I'm not convinced it's a good design to backload a huge power boost like this at level 20.


Final Thoughts:I don't want to come across as overly negative, I really like a lot of what you've done. Some of your fixes for well-known monk problems are quite creative.
For levels 1-19, I would say that this class is mostly tier 4. All it has is combat (specifically hit-and-run tactics), and to be really good at that it relies on an almost painfully small ki pool.
I admit that my ability to judge power levels is mediocre at best, but as I understand it, in order to make it to tier 3, the class needs the ability to contribute outside of it's core focus, and I don't really see how your monk can accomplish this. Being so focused on mobility and self-buffing, it almost seems like the monk would be better all on his own, without trying to fit in with the rest of a party.
At level 20 this monk jumps up to tier 1 along with any other class that can use level 9 spells, but I don't really know how this would be interpreted for power-balance.


As I said earlier, I'd welcome some criticism of my monk fix, even if your feeling vindictive and want to rip into it. :smallbiggrin:
I also reworked several of the special class features and added a few new ones, so if you are still looking to replace or upgrade anything on your list maybe they can provide inspiration.

Realms of Chaos
2013-01-04, 03:25 AM
I'd be happy to trade PEACHes, here's my monk fix (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?p=14457756#post14457756) if you're interested. :smallsmile:

Most certainly. I'll take a look at it first thing in the morning when I'm in a more clear state of mind. I can tell that you've put in a good deal of work here so I'll do my best to return the favor. :smallsmile:


Skill Points: I could make the same arguments about the skill points for almost any melee class. Without more benefits from Intellect, I doubt anyone will be making a skill monkey from the monk. But more skill points are always nice. I'm just not sure how much overall effect they'll have on game, since it sort of raises the monk from struggling to merely competent.

There doesn't seem to be too much problem here but I guess that I could clarify my argument for the monk a bit. It's certainly true that most martial classes are starved for skill points most of the time and that very few of them (save the warblade) have any real reason to use Intelligence. In the case of monks, however, I feel that the traditional reliance on 4 ability scores (all physical ones + Wisdom) instead of the normal 3 of other martial classes makes it harder to put points in Intelligence even if you wanted to go in that way (unless you're using kung fu genius, I suppose). Furthermore, while fighters or barbarians aren't particularly attached to any real skills in particular (giving you some "freedom" among what is available), monks bring to mind a specific skillset that uses your entire allotment of skill points the old version granted you all by itself.


Ki Pool: I definitely like a ki pool to power abilities, the only thing I don't like is the "So long as you possess at least one point of ki in your pool" clause. It seems like it just means you really have 1 less ki point than you think you do, or you need to be certain that whatever that last ki point is spent on will end all encounters for the day because if not the hefty penalties will cripple you.

I can definitely understand that perspective now that I'm getting it from the outside. From the inside, I actually gave it an extra ki point late in the creation process (originally, you'd have 10 at 20th level instead of 11) for that reason entirely. With that said, I am certainly open to alternate suggestions if you have any.


Peerless Grace: I like how you neatly combined several abilities into one. The ability to retreat after attacking is nice, basically giving Spring Attack as a class feature.
I worry that the +4 bonus to checks might a little high for what it costs and how high it stacks, but since none of those abilities are typically gamebreaking I guess it's not an issue.

I'm actually kind of impressed that you find the +4 as high seeing as I lowered it from another fix that eventually granted +60 to skill checks but I suppose that everything is relative. :smalltongue:


Flurry of Blows: Most of what you did is very good, but I wonder if there is ever a situation in which the monk DOESN'T want to use FoB? Combined with Peerless Grace it seems like the monk's special attack is far more effective than ever making normal attacks.
There's two other things you might want to think about: this version doesn't help standard actions as much, since you never get more than 1 normally and there isn't much change to stack up the bonus.
Secondly: keeping track of and rolling all those d6's is way harder than just adding an additional +2. Maybe use a larger dice and just not have them stack so much.

Admittedly, the original version of FoB was (quite) unattractive to Multiclass characters, who would presumably use normal attacks. Now that that is no longer the case, I will probably raise the monk to full BAB.

It is certainly true that this monk's basic attacks don't really scale but the monk eventually gains the pounce ability (or something similar) so it seems unlikely that standard action attacks would even be used after a certain point. Do you think that it's still worth giving the boost?

I had tried to reword the ability to avoid all of the number headaches but I guess that I had failed somewhere in my attempts. The idea was that if you make two attacks as a standard action, for example, both of them get a +1 to the attack roll (after the -2 for flurry) and both deal +1d6 damage. If a level 20 monk makes a full attack with a flurry, meanwhile, all attacks gain a +4 bonus and deal +4d6 damage. Is there some way I could make that more clear?


Combat Styles: These are nice, some of them effectively replace (and/or improve on) the feats which seem to have gone missing from your fix.
Without more testing, I really only see problems with two-
Unshakeable resolve: damage does not usually scale linearly, and by the upper levels 4 or 5 points of DR is pretty "meh" unless you are up against hordes of ankle biters.
Flurry of Movement: If the monk's stated goal is to dodge in an out of combat, how often will he start a turn standing next to an enemy?

For unshakeable resolve, there are a couple of things going on here. First of all, it applies to all forms of damage (physical & energy) unlike just about every other defense. Secondly, it was intended to stack with other defenses so that might play a factor (such as at level 20 when you get some DR). On top of that, none of the abilities were intended to be too big.

For flurry of movement, I'll admit that this one is kind of like leaf in a hurricane, built for players who want to abandon skirmish-dom and resume the "traditional" role of "mage-slayer".


Still Mind: Ok, gonna rant a bit here. Do we really need to pick on enchantment any more? It already suffers from several types of mind-immune enemies and it's one of the most common schools to get anti-whatever abilities for. I would suggest looking for something more interesting; necromancy for example.
Fluff it so that the monk's connection with and devotion to life is so strong they have a natural resistance against necromancy.

Honestly a bit surprised that you're complaining about this ability, which was more or less taken from the monk, instead of diamond mind or diamond essence (both of which hose enchantment far worse and both of which were created just for this class). Even so, I did create anti-necromancy in a sense with the death effect immunity that diamond resilience provides (and most other necromancy effects can be handled through wholeness of body or diamond body).


Sense the Void: Blindsense isn't a very strong ability, IMO, since you still have a 50% miss chance from the concealment. Blindsight is notably better, but it's usefullness depends on how much your DM likes you/hates your party. If your group has a way to dispell invisibility then it's pointless, if they don't then the DM is just being mean to the rest of the party. It's the kind of thing that makes for a memorable encounter once, and then just get's annoying as the wizard tries to make listen checks to figure out where to shoot fireballs.
And if your party doesn't usually fight in the dark or against invisible enemies then it's basically a dead level.
Final verdict: flavorful, but doubtful as to it's overall level of power.

Definitely glad to hear this as I had worried it might seem too powerful (if only because most stuff granting these senses doesn't do so quite as early). :smallsmile:


Chasing Perfection: This can certainly help's the monk's MAD; the only negative thing I can think of is that the +4 bonus is very static. It's probably large enough to never be considered pointless, but +4 at level 4 does not have the same impact as +4 at level 15. What about making it 2+ your combat-style value?

Seeing as +6 enhancement bonuses and +5 inherent bonuses still make a pretty big deal at 20th level, I am of the personal mind that a +4 bonus you can apply to any ability that stacks with everything remains relevant as well (though, as you say, perhaps not as relevant). I might increase the value in the future if others bring it up as well (thank you for bringing that possibility to my attention) but I think that I'll wait to see what others think for now.


Empty Stride: Very thematically appropriate. I like the ability to get Spider Climb AND Water Walk for a ki point, but since the monk isn't wearing any armor (and hence no ACP) it seems unlikely they will want to expend a ki point for the boost when not in a combat situation.
The abilities are certainly useful in the right environment, but still seem to fall behind when compared to a good all-purpose Fly spell.

I was trying to avoid normal flying this early and the hit to utility was more or less to be expected as a result. Even so, you've pretty much hit upon what I was going for with the class feature (a convenient way to have combat in otherwise inconvenient places) so I'm happy.


Diamond Body: The ability to expend a ki point and cure yourself of poison or disease is a nice addition; I may steal that :smallwink:
I feel like their should be some kind of check involved though, since as written it seems like the monk shrug off a plague crafted by the diety of disease himself; though maybe that was the intent.

The problem with a check is that there really isn't any DC we could set for diseases other than the original Fort DC, which might not reflect the power of the disease or its resilience to other forms of healing. It was definitely the intention to let monks shrug off lycanthropecy and mummy rot and I can't really see any way in particular to separate them from the plague made by a deity of disease. Any thoughts on the matter?


Wholeness of Body: The fast healing is definitely nice, but again, I worry that the limited size of the monk's ki pool will cramp the other functions.

Yeah, the extra healing (like many of the ki abilities) was made as more of a last resort measure than the means by which you heal up all of your scrapes.


Diamond Tongue: This isn't a complaint against the monk, precisely, but what does "communicate" really mean? Particularly with regards to nonsentient creatures. For example, I can "communicate" with an oak tree, but if an oak has no eyes, ears, mouth, brain, etc, what can it tell me? I would rather see some specific buffs or abilities, like a bonus to Bluff, Diplomacy, Intimidate, Sense Motive (if speaking is involved) and maybe Perform (Singing) checks, since Charisma is usually a dump stat for monks and they can use some help in this area.

For inanimate objects, the stonetell spell actually provides a decent guide (even if it doesn't give you a good mental picture). For mindless/animalistic creatures, that's been something I've always wondered as well. It's right there with the original monk so I've carried it over. Still no clue how you talk to oozes, though.


Abundant Step: Being able to do this more than once a day is a good improvement, but I am inherently wary of anything that can be done at will.
I alsommight limit it by saying that if the monk can't see where he wants to teleport too, he needs to be very familiar with the area (such as having lived there for a period of time) and if not then he takes of chance of teleporting in a random direction, rather than just having passed through once.

I understand your wariness but I'm not seeing any particularly broken mechanics for it so far. It takes your standard actions to bypass certain forms of obstacles and evade attacks of opportunity. Even if you use it as a swift action, actually using it to charge is impossible. Also, the effect specifically requires the monk to have a line of sight with the destination so I'm a bit confused as to where the need for familiarity is coming from. :smallconfused:


Perfect Self: If you have "transcended the limits of mortality" then why do you still die of old age?
If you are still treated as your original creature type, why benefit does being an outsider confer? Would it be easier to just say you get Darkvision and don't need to sleep or eat?
Also, combined with the point from the earlier "perfection" ability, you get a permenant net boost to your Basic abilities of +13 all at one go.
And then there's Wish.
If any of the lower level abilities where lacking, I would say this certainly makes up for them, but I'm not convinced it's a good design to backload a huge power boost like this at level 20.

The main benefit of being an outsider, or at least I had believed, was being immortal (though I might be wrong). Being an outsider provides immunity against anything targetting your old type (humanbane weapons, hold person, charm person, etc.) as well as giving you darkvision and the no eat/sleep.

While +13 (+14 with your normal level advancement) is certainly big, I would hope that it counts for something that you're not getting more than +4 to one ability score and +2 to the rest. At the end of the day, unless I'm missing something, that would amount to a +1 or +2 bonus to all of your rolls and some bonus hit points.

As for the wish, I am well aware that wish is an incredibly powerful spell. With the ability written as it is, however (stealing ALL of your ki to get 1 wish, pretty much limiting you to 1 wish/day), I can't think of too many ways it can be abused unless your DM lets you wish for candles of invocation or some other such madness.


Final Thoughts:I don't want to come across as overly negative, I really like a lot of what you've done. Some of your fixes for well-known monk problems are quite creative.
For levels 1-19, I would say that this class is mostly tier 4. All it has is combat (specifically hit-and-run tactics), and to be really good at that it relies on an almost painfully small ki pool.
I admit that my ability to judge power levels is mediocre at best, but as I understand it, in order to make it to tier 3, the class needs the ability to contribute outside of it's core focus, and I don't really see how your monk can accomplish this. Being so focused on mobility and self-buffing, it almost seems like the monk would be better all on his own, without trying to fit in with the rest of a party.
At level 20 this monk jumps up to tier 1 along with any other class that can use level 9 spells, but I don't really know how this would be interpreted for power-balance.


As I said earlier, I'd welcome some criticism of my monk fix, even if your feeling vindictive and want to rip into it. :smallbiggrin:
I also reworked several of the special class features and added a few new ones, so if you are still looking to replace or upgrade anything on your list maybe they can provide inspiration.

Your response hasn't sounded all that negative, actually.

Many of your critiques illuminated new things that I hadn't considered and made me consider things from new perspectives.

As far as the combat-centric focus, you might certainly be right there but that is largely what I was going for here. As I said at the top of the post, I was aiming for somewhere between high tier 4 and tier 3 and it would seem like I got there in one piece so I'm actually pretty happy. :smallcool:

As for the self-sufficiency, I guess that is a good part of what I've always seen in monks. They eschew weapons and armor to get by with their own body and have such control over their own bodies that they gain quasi-magical abilities such as healing themselves or a series of immunities. Even so, I do feel that small touches in the class to let this guy work in a group. As mentioned in the first post, I would expect that the skirmishing tactic works best when your target is already by a tank (forcing the target to either make a full attack against the tank or provoke an AoO from the tank chasing you down so it could likely make a single attack). Similarly, the ability to lower your spell resistance against spells lets you work well with allied spellcasters (at least compared with the PHB monk)

I still feel that you may be over-estimating what a single wish could do without invoking infinite loops but I'll see what others say and the wish may very well be removed in the future.

As stated above, I'll get to your class in the morning. Thanks for all of your hard work here. :smallbiggrin:

Vaynor
2013-01-04, 04:06 AM
I don't think the +2 to all ability scores or Wish 1/day are overpowered abilities for a capstone, necessarily (and from a "big picture" sense), but it's definitely more powerful than most capstones.

Deepbluediver
2013-01-04, 10:41 AM
There doesn't seem to be too much problem here but I guess that I could clarify my argument for the monk a bit. *snip*
...monks bring to mind a specific skillset that uses your entire allotment of skill points the old version granted you all by itself.
I once made the mention of "monks" to a few of my nerdy non-D&D playing freinds, who where immediately confused as to why a monk would need to run around punching people or fight at all, since they spend most of their days praying or writing books. They where thinking of western roman-catholic monks, of course, not the eastern shaolin version from D&D.

I think most people will admit that they do seem slightly out of place in a world that is otherwise strictly Tolken-esque medieval European fantasy, but it wouldn't hurt to keep in mind that there is more than one definition of "monk". The jumping/running/tumbling acrobat is just one archetype, and it's only real "requirement" for skill is what it needs ot fuel it's class features.

You could rebuild the class entirely into a Cleric-light/hindu holy man, relying on knowledge checks, healing, handle animal and spellcraft, if you really wanted, and still call it a "monk".


I can definitely understand that perspective now that I'm getting it from the outside. From the inside, I actually gave it an extra ki point late in the creation process (originally, you'd have 10 at 20th level instead of 11) for that reason entirely. With that said, I am certainly open to alternate suggestions if you have any.
Since you let abilities scores rise fairly quickly, why not just make it 1/2 your level plus your Wisdom Bonus? That way players start off with 2-4 and end up with something in the neighborhood of 15-18 (maybe 20+ if they really focus on SADing Wisdom).
The pool doesn't need to be HUGE, but I think it should be large enough that the player isn't perpetually in fear of running out.


I'm actually kind of impressed that you find the +4 as high seeing as I lowered it from another fix that eventually granted +60 to skill checks but I suppose that everything is relative. :smalltongue:
It's probably not overpowerd compared to things like the Jump, unless you don't like how powerful magic is (like me). As I said, I doubt the ability is truly broken, and at its worst it would be no more gamebreaking than existing options.
It's just that at every level the bonus will probably be enough to pass any reasonable check with ease, and any unreasonable checks mean the rest of your party can't follow.

So to summarize, I guess I just find guaranteed success boring.


I had tried to reword the ability to avoid all of the number headaches but I guess that I had failed somewhere in my attempts. The idea was that if you make two attacks as a standard action, for example, both of them get a +1 to the attack roll (after the -2 for flurry) and both deal +1d6 damage. If a level 20 monk makes a full attack with a flurry, meanwhile, all attacks gain a +4 bonus and deal +4d6 damage. Is there some way I could make that more clear?
If that is your intent, then yes, something definitely needs to be changed in the wording (or just spell out exactly what happens in an example to avoid confusion). When I read it, I thought that it meant the first hit had no bonus, and if it connected, the second hit got +2 and +1d6. The third hit (assuming the second blow landed) was at +4 and +2d6. The fourth hit was at +6 and +3d6, etc etc etc.



For unshakeable resolve, there are a couple of things going on here. First of all, it applies to all forms of damage (physical & energy) unlike just about every other defense. Secondly, it was intended to stack with other defenses so that might play a factor (such as at level 20 when you get some DR). On top of that, none of the abilities were intended to be too big.

For flurry of movement, I'll admit that this one is kind of like leaf in a hurricane, built for players who want to abandon skirmish-dom and resume the "traditional" role of "mage-slayer".
Ok, that make's sense.


Honestly a bit surprised that you're complaining about this ability, which was more or less taken from the monk, instead of diamond mind or diamond essence (both of which hose enchantment far worse and both of which were created just for this class).
I just didn't feel the need to repeat my arguments against anti-enchantment magic.
Like I said, enchantment seems to suffer more than any other school because of immunities from creature type, and I thought that a resistance to necromancy (or any other school you want to fluff up) was more unique. For example, when I did a Rogue fix, I gave them resistance to divination, because it fit with the rogues theme of a sneaky-stealthy-hidey class.


The problem with a check is that there really isn't any DC we could set for diseases other than the original Fort DC, which might not reflect the power of the disease or its resilience to other forms of healing. It was definitely the intention to let monks shrug off lycanthropecy and mummy rot and I can't really see any way in particular to separate them from the plague made by a deity of disease. Any thoughts on the matter?
Seems like your intent matches the ability then, so not really. Unless you want to get into reworking how diseases in D&D function (both disease and poison, IMO, need some TLC).


Yeah, the extra healing (like many of the ki abilities) was made as more of a last resort measure than the means by which you heal up all of your scrapes.
Would you consider either a feat or an ability to let you use the healing on other characters? I know I harped on the monk's limited ki pool, but clearing up ability damage or drain without needing to prepare a spell for it would be a nice feature.


I understand your wariness but I'm not seeing any particularly broken mechanics for it so far. It takes your standard actions to bypass certain forms of obstacles and evade attacks of opportunity. Even if you use it as a swift action, actually using it to charge is impossible. Also, the effect specifically requires the monk to have a line of sight with the destination so I'm a bit confused as to where the need for familiarity is coming from. :smallconfused:
I meant that the monk needed an increased familiarity to teleport to any place he COULDN'T see, via the "10-minute spend 1 ki point version". That's just similar to the way most other teleportation effects work, I think.


The main benefit of being an outsider, or at least I had believed, was being immortal (though I might be wrong). Being an outsider provides immunity against anything targetting your old type (humanbane weapons, hold person, charm person, etc.) as well as giving you darkvision and the no eat/sleep.
Ok, if your intent is that the monk doesn't die from old age, then I would spell that out. (I generally refer to effects like that as "limited immortality") If that was the intent of the original ability, I never picked up on it.


While +13 (+14 with your normal level advancement) is certainly big, I would hope that it counts for something that you're not getting more than +4 to one ability score and +2 to the rest. At the end of the day, unless I'm missing something, that would amount to a +1 or +2 bonus to all of your rolls and some bonus hit points.

As for the wish, I am well aware that wish is an incredibly powerful spell. With the ability written as it is, however (stealing ALL of your ki to get 1 wish, pretty much limiting you to 1 wish/day), I can't think of too many ways it can be abused unless your DM lets you wish for candles of invocation or some other such madness.

I think that my complaint was less that this was overpowering, and more that it seems to be a big jump coming out of nowhere. For the stats, in particular, I would smooth out the increase. Instead of gaining +1 every 4 levels from chasing perfection, which matches your normal stat-increases, I think, make it one every 3 so that it's offset, and have it increase to 1 every 2 levels at some point, (for example, you gain a +1 boost a 4, 7, 10, 13, 15, 17, 19) and then a +1 to all stats at level 20.
Alternatively, if your goal is to merely ensure the monk has no weak points, then you could say that the monk's minimum ability modifier is never less than +1.

Personally I HATE Wish as a spell, but I'll try to keep my vitriol out of your thread.
If you want the monk to have Wish at level 20, maybe giving them something like Limited Wish a few levels earlier would be a good lead-in.

Realms of Chaos
2013-01-04, 12:18 PM
Deepbluediver: Ah, I had thought that this might have been the case but it would seem that you've been looking at the initial writup for the monk, which has already seen several edits so far. The flurry of blows ability has been reworded for clarity from the intial hit-to-gain-subsequent-bonus version and the 10-minute abundant step has been replaced with swift-action teleportation for the sake of jumping in with a flurry of blows.

I'm very hesitant about adding Wisdom modifier to your supply of ki/day because one of the main purposes of this class was to give the monk as few reasons to SAD their Wisdom as possible (right now, all that you get after 22 wisdom are the AC bonus and fast healing). What I can definitely do, however, is up the supply to 3 + 1/2 class level to give it a couple uses that you can actually use at 1st level.

As for the final ability, I think that I'll put in words saying that you cease aging and replace wish with limited wish (removing magic item creation, mass revival, inherent bonuses, and so forth).

About the skill bonuses from peerless grace, I don't see much of a problem with automatic success if the task is getting from point a to point b. It lets monks travel and scout where other party members can't and tension isn't totally removed from areas where such checks are required for passage as the rest of the party still needs to get by. If you're having a battle on thin ice and everyone needs to balance to avoid breaking through or falling down, for example, having one person who can shine in that circumstance probably wouldn't be the end of the world.

I may create a feat for transferred healing in the near future. Definitely something for me to keep in mind when making feats.

Finally, I guess that you're right about "monk" having all sorts of meanings. While you seem to be looking at it from an outsider perspective with all of the various meanings of being a "monk", however, I seem to be taking a very interior view based on the relatively limited expectations of what a "monk" is in D&D. While you're certainly right that the monk's flavor has always been a bit out of place (especially with the rest of the default setting), I feel confident that most people already familiar with the game (who I guess I'm creating this for as they are the ones who know that the old monk needs fixing) will know what I'm talking about. Still, you've given me quite a bit to think on.

T.G. Oskar
2013-01-05, 02:50 AM
T.G. Oskar: Frankly, I'm convinced that enough jump check to reach high foes isn't a thing. Even with the +60 bonus that Jiriku's build gave, that's only an extra 15 feet of height and a creature with a fly speed of 60 and wingby attack (which isn't ridiculous) would need 30 feet of height to reliably reach. In truth, however, it feels like many people who speak about flying are to some degree referring to casters using at least mid-ranged spells from midair and I can't really imagine ANYTHING other than flight reaching that high.

I agree with the statement that Jump isn't the best way to handle flying creatures or flying casters (which, by virtue of being treated as creatures, ALSO count as flying creatures, so the reference is to any creature with a flying ability regardless of how it manifests), but it's the only reasonable non-flight mundane way to reach those creatures, outside of, well, actually using ranged weapons. I find that the restriction of 1 ft. per 4 points of Jump harms anyone attempting to use the Jump skill in lieu of "realism", but even if you manage to make an awesome leap, you'd still require a massive Jump bonus to reach that high. So yeah, flight IS necessary if you intend to fight flying creatures through "brute force".


As far as options, though this guy does have a couple. Teleporting into the air via abundant step is relatively safe as peerless grace cushions the fall. Likewise, it doesn't hurt as much if normal flying items are dispelled and I know that there is at least one armor enhancement (from the Eberron Campaign Setting, I believe) that would allow you to fly and can be applied through chasing perfection. If near a cliff, mountain, house, or so forth, the ki ability of empty stride allows you scale up to the level of a creature before leaping out at it (at least getting rid of the height problem). Empty Body could allow you to float up while ethereal before diving down onto a creature. Finally, though a subpar option, the shortbow has been added as a proficiency and any monk can spend 1 ki to get zen archery for extra range/damage.

I made notice of the shortbow, actually, and how Zen Archery works with it.

I don't like the idea of teleporting upwards, because I find it a waste of the ability, particularly as you need to spend precious ki points to use it (you're making the at-will option a standard action, which means you can't attack barring the Sun School feat from Complete Warrior). Teleporting as a swift action works best when tied to something like shadow-pouncing, where you deal a full attack and as much damage as possible, then back off to prevent the counterattack. However, I must admit I missed that possibility.

On the other hand, I have an aversion to actual flight as a class feature for Monks due to Dragon Ball. Gaining it through a spell or item is fair game, though, and the idea you mention here...


As for actual flying, though, I admit that I missed that ability. One option I have at my disposal would be adding airwalking as an alternate ki ability to the freedom ability of unbound stride (unbound by gravity in this case). I guess that my question for you would be if this implimentation would be a) sufficient and b) early enough. If the answer to either is no, would you have any suggestions on how to improve?

..is, IMO, spot on. Gives it a wuxia feel, taking advantage of your superior mobility, and playing right on the skirmisher concept.

I'll have to do a comparison to how I dealt with the problem, where I moved through several ways until I made it similar to the Scorn Earth ability from the Elocater, using ki to make it Air Walk proper. I'd make it so that it eventually becomes a permanent ability, but 4th level is reasonable. Fly, the spell, is gained at 5th level by Wizards and Sorcerers, and you're aiming for a combat application of flight, so it's not really overpowered (considering it lasts at most 5 rounds).


As for the multiclassing problem, I must admit that I now have somewhat less disrespect for WotC's decision to stop multiclassing for monks. Monks have always been front-loaded to a great degree by necessity just to completely set up what monks are in the first level or two. In order to do so properly, however, monks end up even more front-loaded. While nothing that they get at first level is particularly "broken", the ability to snag all of it with a single level and never look back is a bit... ungh. This is particularly true because I wanted flurry to develop naturally instead of saying "you gain 1 attack at level w, a second attack at level x, a third attack at level y, and a fourth attack at level z". At the end of the day, I think that my problem may be that I don't think a 1-2 level dip into any base class should be relevant at 20th level and I'm not seeing any way to stop dips without "punishing" multiclassing in general. Do you have any suggestions?

That's hard, but the idea is that Monks often PrC for two reasons: one, because the remainder of their class skills doesn't compare to what PrCs offer, and second, because the first two levels offer a huge load of abilities that are very useful. Consider that the original Monk offers two bonus feats, the ability to treat unarmed strikes as lethal weapons dealing increased damage, Wis to AC and evasion, which is a formidable dip. Now, imagine that spread through 6 levels instead of 2, and you make dips much harder. Fighters come in dips of 1, 2 or 6, but a 6-level dip is a considerable one, because it leaves you with 14 other levels to work with, instead of 18. Giving good class features at every level is enough to discourage multiclassing, but the main features you wish Monks to advance should be given at the first 6 levels, IMO.


Edit Edit: What do you mean by not taking advantage of unarmed strike to deal more damage, T.G. Oskar? Do you mean using flurry of blows to improve ranged attacks? That would seem to be what context suggests but I just want to make sure. :smallconfused:

Sort of. While you already deal a nice amount of damage (spread 4d6 on 8 or more attacks, of which at least two of them will definitely land), what I was looking at was increasing base damage. This isn't much of an issue with shortbows, but it IS with, say, shuriken, or handaxes, or darts. They deal insignificant amounts of damage at early levels, and only become useful when you can deal about 4 attacks with enough bonuses to matter. This is even MORE significant when speaking of shuriken, because there's no reason why to take a weapon that deals 1d2 points of damage at early levels when you can have a weapon that deals slightly more (1d4 for darts and sling bullets, 1d6 for shortbow-fired arrows). Small monks using shuriken get hosed, because they deal only one extra point of damage. However, what you really want at higher levels is to use your unarmed strike, because it can deal obscene amounts of damage (2d8 + 4d6 + Str + enhancement bonus, plus apply the bonuses of combat styles, per attack), because you want your attacks to matter. A shortbow only gets Zen Archery, while unarmed strikes get Meteoric Fists, Power Attack (they are explicitly mentioned as being capable of getting the PA boost) and other such modifiers. While fully equaling unarmed strike damage with ranged damage is preposterous, doing it at a lesser scale is perfectly viable. It can be made as another combat style, where throwing weapons and shuriken (and if you feel comfortable with it, all monk weapons) deal their full damage or the unarmed strike damage dice of a Monk of lesser level, whichever is higher. I share this ability because I find the idea of a Monk using simple, almost insignificant weapons and deal impressive amounts of damage with them fitting with a character that pursues enlightenment and seeks to depend as little as possible from items (and if pulled correctly, makes a skirmisher less of a pest and more of a threat).

Realms of Chaos
2013-01-05, 11:34 AM
As stated in the first edit of the post you commented on, many of the fixes have been put into place. Combat Styles and Ki points do grow with other levels (if slower) and Flurry no longer hoses multiclassing. Zen archery and flurry aren't mutually exclusive (which you've taken note of), and air walking (combined with much-improved jumping through empty stride) have been instated.

As for improved ranged damage, I'm a bit curious why the static bonus from zen archery (which anyone could now acquire for 1 ki point) is insufficient. A 20th level halfling monk would deal 6 (7 if you spent a ki point) points of damage/shuriken (as opposed to the average 9+Str damage an unarmed strike would deal), the approximate average that it would have if it were a d12 weapon. It's true that the damage-rolling process for shuriken isn't exciting but it's not as though the damage itself seems too lacking, does it? :smallconfused:

nonsi
2013-01-05, 05:09 PM
Hi RoC,

I have no doubt that youíve reached your goals with this class, but I have quite a few reservations regarding some of your choices and the role your Monk will have in an adventuring party.
Of course, I only bring my basket of personal experience, gaming expectations and assumptions, but here goes.


Damage progression and size variations
Given that:
1. Basically a single table sums up everything we need to know about damage conversions by size.
2. The monkís base damage (as base damage) is ok and people are already used to it.
I see no real added value to this change.
The aim was simplification, but the result is an exception to the rule tailored just for the Monk, and thatís just something more to remember.


Ki Pool
Yes, I used one myself in my codexí Monk, but wasnít very happy with it.
I used one, because up until my latest fix I couldnít find a way to make a decent Monk fix without it.
My overall problem with pools is bookkeeping. Itís not really difficult, but itís another something to keep track of.


Peerless Grace
The core Monkís speed increase is significant.
With all the mobility candies you gave your monk, even using the core increase is more than enough to ensure that the last worry a monk will have is not being mobile enough.
So, this is not really a problematic change, just one that doesnít seem necessary.


Sense Void
This seems like handling a challenge before challenge is met.
I mean, 3rd level Ė isnít it a bit premature ?


#Attacks & Damage output
Taking your Monk at level 20, just by how you worded and explained FoB, if my calculations are correct, assuming a modest +4 Str-bonus, base 286.
Before TWF, before Improved Natural Attack, before magical enhancements of various sorts, before even considering the classí other features (Touch of Eternity for instance), and way way before putting minimal effort into minmaxing.
Without too much effort, your Monk, at level 20, could mop the floor with a gold great wyrm. Is this where youíre aiming at?
Another issue is the sheer number of attacks. So many dice rolls are too taxing in my book on that precious gametime. If youíre using software to do all dice rolls for you, thatís acceptable on the time consumption part (but for me, rolling the dice is half the fun). If not, than routinely rolling so many dice is just too much.



Aside for the above, Iím taking notes and collecting ideas that might be beneficial to my Monk without causing a major power spike (already found several ideas I really like).
Iíll let you know if and when I find anything of use to me.

Realms of Chaos
2013-01-05, 08:25 PM
Oooh, I've actually been waiting for this criticism. Let's see what you've found.



Damage progression and size variations
Given that:
1. Basically a single table sums up everything we need to know about damage conversions by size.
2. The monkís base damage (as base damage) is ok and people are already used to it.
I see no real added value to this change.
The aim was simplification, but the result is an exception to the rule tailored just for the Monk, and thatís just something more to remember.

Yeah, I think that this is is probably a matter of opinion either way. My way seems more "aesthetically" pleasant to my mind if that makes any sense (damage upgrades every 4 levels with larger creatures being 4 levels higher and smaller creatures being 4 levels lower) and I think that my solution would hypothetically make it more clear what would happen with huge+ or tiny- characters and their progressions. All the same, it is certainly true that the previous system was "broken" by any means and that some people might already have that memorized. I'm just going to call this one a wash unless someone pops up with the same concerns.


Ki Pool
Yes, I used one myself in my codexí Monk, but wasnít very happy with it.
I used one, because up until my latest fix I couldnít find a way to make a decent Monk fix without it.
My overall problem with pools is bookkeeping. Itís not really difficult, but itís another something to keep track of.

I don't view it so much as another thing to keep track of as I do a thing to keep track of. Seriously, this monk has nothing else (other than HP, which applies to everyone) that needs bookkeeping. While it may certainly be true that some people come to a monk looking for simplicity, I wanted to make a fix that gave some form of tactical depth.

In my world view, I would honestly say that your recent fix has more book keeping as you had at least 3 abilities with different recharges whereas everything here draws on a single pool that constantly depletes.


Peerless Grace
The core Monkís speed increase is significant.
With all the mobility candies you gave your monk, even using the core increase is more than enough to ensure that the last worry a monk will have is not being mobile enough.
So, this is not really a problematic change, just one that doesnít seem necessary.

I'll admit that I went with the +100 speed more because it let me get all of the other bonuses to nice round bonuses (+40 to jump, balance, and tumble, ignore all damage from any fall, move 50 feet after attacking, the full +5 AC bonus) but I suppose I could cut all of the +10 bonuses in half if necessary.


Sense Void
This seems like handling a challenge before challenge is met.
I mean, 3rd level Ė isnít it a bit premature ?

That was an ability I felt kind of odd about as well. I knew that I wanted blindsense in somewhere and as the class came together, it seemed to be where things fit in. I'll admit that invisible opponents don't really become a thing until levels 6-8 (with invisible stalkers, phantom fungus, and such) but blindsense doesn't actually seem too powerful at the moment as it does allow someone to play as a "blind" monk relatively early so I've decided to let sleeping dogs lie unless someone finds an actual power issue with it.


#Attacks & Damage output
Taking your Monk at level 20, just by how you worded and explained FoB, if my calculations are correct, assuming a modest +4 Str-bonus, base 286.
Before TWF, before Improved Natural Attack, before magical enhancements of various sorts, before even considering the classí other features (Touch of Eternity for instance), and way way before putting minimal effort into minmaxing.

I admit that my explanation for the ability (at least in the opening post) was long overdue for a facelift (which I have just completed). Even so, I found that it was still dealing about 264 damage with a full attack (assuming that every single attack you made hit, which seems a tad unrealistic).

With all of that math right in front of me, however, I have decided to take an action I had considered long ago, keeping flurry of blows from stacking with other forms of extra attacks.

As an answer to the excessive damage/dice rolling, one thing I've considered is replacing the bonus attack bonus/damage dice with the following (or something similar):

"Once per round, when making a flurry of blows, you may make one of your attacks a finishing blow. For each successful attack you had made against the target within the part round, the finishing blow gains a +1 bonus to the attack roll and deals +1d6 damage."

nonsi
2013-01-06, 02:59 PM
Two questions regarding Chasing Perfection:
1. I get the whole, "it's a fantasy game" part, but how do you rationalize the "may enchant yourself as a shield" part?
2. With all the unarmed enchantment flexibility you provide, what room does this leave for a potential Soulknife fix? I mean, why would I ever bother addressing the Jedi concept with all these goodies handed for free?

Realms of Chaos
2013-01-06, 04:29 PM
#1: to help illustrate what I'm thinking without importing pictures from anime, here is a stock photo that may prove illustrative.
http://us.123rf.com/400wm/400/400/stylephotographs/stylephotographs0906/stylephotographs090600011/4946297-man-protecting-his-face-with-his-arms.jpg
my basic thoughts are that a shield bonus would represent the ability to block attacks with your bare forearms/knees/etc.
#2: Admittedly, the customizability was something that I may have dove into a bit too quickly (no fault to Vaynor for suggesting it, though). As for what room it leaves for a soulknife, that's kind of difficult to answer as the soulknife doesn't seem to have any idea of what it is beyond someone with a single superpower (which most fixes I've seen actively try to change). I've seen a fix that gives the soulknife psionics, another that mixes the soulknife with the soulborn for incarnum goodness, at least two that promote more frontline combat and flexibility on a round-by-round basis, a good deal of them allow for ranged combat with enhancements (which you can't use chasing perfection for), etc. So, yeah, I actually do see room to grow as very few people actually stay with the base concept of the soul-knife without adding something significant.

nonsi
2013-01-07, 05:48 AM
Hi again RoC,

I'm taking the liberty of using some of your suggested battlefield mobility ideas to improve Mercurial Charge and add another associated feature at 10th level.

I'm also applying your proposed shield enhancements, hogging Diamond Essence nearly as is, and distributing some of your proposed resistances.


Hoping to be done with it today.

Deepbluediver
2013-01-07, 10:13 AM
Deepbluediver: Ah, I had thought that this might have been the case but it would seem that you've been looking at the initial writup for the monk, which has already seen several edits so far.
Sorry about that then; guess I need to work more quickly and/or pay better attention. :smallsmile:


I'm very hesitant about adding Wisdom modifier to your supply of ki/day because one of the main purposes of this class was to give the monk as few reasons to SAD their Wisdom as possible. What I can definitely do, however, is up the supply to 3 + 1/2 class level to give it a couple uses that you can actually use at 1st level.
I'm open to multiple possibilities, really; "option B" I was going to sugest was just 1/class level, which is pretty straightforward, lets you control exactly how much ki the monk has, and doesn't favor wisdom.

Ultimately, I think having 2-3 points of ki to spend per encounter is sufficient, if the character is played decently. What I was worried about was that with your original formula was that it seemed like you couldn't manage that until level 12+, and you had to use pretty much ALL your ki optimally. If you ever wasted a point or had to spend one on something unexpected, it could mess up your whole rest of the day.


About the skill bonuses from peerless grace....
Ok, good points. I guess I like the idea of adding "scout" to the monk's capabilities. Might want to think of some way to give them the ability to disarm or nuetralize traps, unless you want a seperate person to be following up with the lockpicks.



Two questions regarding Chasing Perfection:
*snip*
2. With all the unarmed enchantment flexibility you provide, what room does this leave for a potential Soulknife fix? I mean, why would I ever bother addressing the Jedi concept with all these goodies handed for free?

I'd like to put my two cp in here for a sec.

While I love the variety that D&D provides, both in splatbooks and homebrew, I really think that some of the concepts, particularly for melee, get spread a little thin. Recently I saw a thread for an "Archer" class, and my first thought was "why do I need to spend 20 LEVELS learning how to use a bow?" In the same time, the wizard manages to master all 8 schools of arcane magic, and a cleric can fight AND heal AND turn undead AND do all the other godly stuff that makes them tier 1.

IMO, combining some of the flimsier or less fleshed-out classes to get 1 decent class instead of 3 mediocre ones is not a bad idea. I already mentioned in another thread how ki points seem a little like power points, and while I'm not advocating it here (or anywhere atm) I think that if you took the best traits of the soul knife and a monk, you could probably end up with a pretty nice mobile-melee combatant/skill monkey.

If you can't come up with enough seperate features to distinguish one class from another, then maybe the individual concepts wheren't really enough to build a whole 20 levels with anyway. I think there are quite a few things that would work better as a 5 or 10 level prestige class. Even though I think it was originaly intended to be the "psionic rogue", perhaps the soul knife is one of these.

As an aside, I'd rather have 2 very similar but differently flavored classes (physical rogue vs. psionic rogue) that where both decent, instead of two entirely different classes, both of which where pretty weak.

Realms of Chaos
2013-01-07, 10:50 AM
Hi again RoC,

I'm taking the liberty of using some of your suggested battlefield mobility ideas to improve Mercurial Charge and add another associated feature at 10th level.

I'm also applying your proposed shield enhancements, hogging Diamond Essence nearly as is, and distributing some of your proposed resistances.


Hoping to be done with it today.

Glad I could be of assistance. :smallsmile:

nonsi
2013-01-07, 11:06 AM
I'd like to put my two cp in here for a sec.

While I love the variety that D&D provides, both in splatbooks and homebrew, I really think that some of the concepts, particularly for melee, get spread a little thin. Recently I saw a thread for an "Archer" class, and my first thought was "why do I need to spend 20 LEVELS learning how to use a bow?" In the same time, the wizard manages to master all 8 schools of arcane magic, and a cleric can fight AND heal AND turn undead AND do all the other godly stuff that makes them tier 1.

IMO, combining some of the flimsier or less fleshed-out classes to get 1 decent class instead of 3 mediocre ones is not a bad idea.

I totally agree with you.
Both my Warrior and my Monk are embodyments of this very notion.




I already mentioned in another thread how ki points seem a little like power points, and while I'm not advocating it here (or anywhere atm) I think that if you took the best traits of the soul knife and a monk, you could probably end up with a pretty nice mobile-melee combatant/skill monkey.

IMO, they don't mesh well thematically.




If you can't come up with enough seperate features to distinguish one class from another, then maybe the individual concepts wheren't really enough to build a whole 20 levels with anyway. I think there are quite a few things that would work better as a 5 or 10 level prestige class. Even though I think it was originaly intended to be the "psionic rogue", perhaps the soul knife is one of these.

Could work, but I'm personally not a big fan of PrCs.
I believe they should be used only when one's done improving/tweaking the base classes and no base class combo is found that even remotely emulates the concept. And if and when used, they should not be more powerful, just different.




As an aside, I'd rather have 2 very similar but differently flavored classes (physical rogue vs. psionic rogue) that where both decent, instead of two entirely different classes, both of which where pretty weak.

The aim is good. I just don't see the Rogue as decent. The current community Rogue fix goes a long way in making it decent.