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Selenir
2013-05-28, 12:34 PM
While I consider myself quite accomplished at homebrewing balanced and interesting classes, I'm no expert on character optimization. What traits and abilities would a PrC (or base class) have/need to be an effective anti-spellcaster terror? I'd want the class to be focused on hunting spellcasters and strong enough to terrify even a mid-level wizard with moderate optimization, but not so broken that the wizard might as well concede. They'd also have to be relevant in a party when fighting non-magic foes, though they sure don't need to be top-tier.

I don't mind giving them magic of their own, but no spellcasting. Spell-like abilities and supernatural powers would be fine though.

What would this class need to include? Spell resistance and good saves, sure, and some way of dispelling (or perhaps devouring magic), but what else? How would an optimized wizard kill something with high spell resistance, and how can this class beat them?

GunbladeKnight
2013-05-28, 01:17 PM
Typing from my phone so I won't worry so much about grammar.

Abilities needed:
Good fort and will
Good hit die if not good ref
Ability to dispell at a distance
Ability to pierce magical miss chance
Abilty to hit at a distance
Able to attack even defensive casters

Recommended:
Mettle
Evasion
Spell resistance
Bonus to saves vs spells
Ability to succeed on saves on nat 1
Ability to interrupt at a distance.

Edit: Forgot bonus to touch AC.

Selenir
2013-05-28, 01:47 PM
Typing from my phone so I won't worry so much about grammar.

Abilities needed:
Good fort and will
Good hit die if not good ref
Ability to dispell at a distance
Ability to pierce magical miss chance
Abilty to hit at a distance
Able to attack even defensive casters

Recommended:
Mettle
Evasion
Spell resistance
Bonus to saves vs spells
Ability to succeed on saves on nat 1
Ability to interrupt at a distance.

Edit: Forgot bonus to touch AC.

Sounds pretty extensive. The thought of seeing all that in a single class makes me worry a lot about their balance levels. I like the idea of them interrupting spells and getting to ignore defensive casting a lot, all those other advantages make them just super powerful against lots of foes. Somebody with a high Touch AC probably has a high AC in general, making them handle mundane attacks too.

That's a good list.

Anything else? If I give a class all of that, any opportunity to weaken them in other areas? I don't want to just throw in all kinds of Kryptonite to bring the anti-mage Superman down to a normal power level, but I don't want the mage-slayer to bring their superiority over spellcasters over to other areas as much.

Phippster
2013-05-28, 02:57 PM
Something I've seen done a lot in fiction is the bow-wielding mage slayer, often focused in mounted archery for extra mobility. The ability to, say, have an ability to make your attacks into a sort of targeted anti-magic field would be useful.

Some sort of limited magic invulnerability would likely be in order. Some sort of personal AMF that doesn't effect his own items, or he has his own way of gaining the effects of magic items without needing magic ones. Piercing magical defenses is also a huge player.

Yakk
2013-05-28, 03:06 PM
Ability to ignore/block Divinations.
Ability to avoid or deal with the don't save, just suck spells (like forcecage, solid fog, waves of exhaustion, etc).
Ability to deal with save-or-lose spells and effects.
Ability to deal with touch-and-lose spells and effects.
Ability to deal with flying, invisible, wind-wall protected foes.
Ability to deal with contingent teleport foes (or something else similar).
Ability to deal with dimension dooring foes.
Ability to deal with mass enemy summons.
Ability to deal with WoDzilla polymorph and self buffs.
Ability to deal with near 100% miss chances.
Ability to follow foes who flee non-mundanely (plane shift, rope trick, etc).

Selenir
2013-05-28, 03:21 PM
One thing I've seen in a fantasy novel I haven't read in years (so I forget the source) was anti-magic weaponry. Specifically, a sword with a null-magic gemstone set in the hilt. The weapon completely ignored magical defenses and could cleave through a wizard's wards like butter, and couldn't be enchanted or turned aside by witchcraft.

A weapon like that might dispel any summoned monster it strikes, or even dismiss a called monster in rarer circumstances.

Looking at these lists is a very intimidating prospect. Whatever class I end up developing is going to have to be intimidating indeed. Additionally, I need to come up with flavor that fits the theme. Right now I'm eyeing something like a Death Knight - a magical construct/magically enhanced champion who uses powerful attacks and frightening magical defenses to wade through spellcasters' tricks. Perhaps some sort of "devour magic" ability, that heals them when a spell is resisted or dispelled, coupled with some sort of "binding" ability that blocks extradimensional travel and movement and can sever a mage's connection to magic in some way. Perhaps hitting them with an attack can disrupt their ability to spellcast at all.

GunbladeKnight
2013-05-28, 04:15 PM
I personally am rewriting the hexblade into more of an antimage.

And the reason it seems daunting is really because of all the effects magic can do. So really you only need to work on counters to the overpowered or broken spells, or rewrite magic.

Yitzi
2013-05-28, 04:54 PM
The ideas here (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=208452) might help, though that was made with Core in mind.

Xaotiq1
2013-05-29, 04:09 PM
If you and your DM have no issues with ToB, this could be of some use.

Otataral Dragon
Associated Skill: Sense Motive (Wis).
Discipline Weapons: Bite, Claw, Tail Slap, unarmed strike, Pick (Light or Heavy), Scimitar, Falchion, Flail (Light or Heavy), Glaive, Guisarme, Ranseur, and whip/whip-dagger.
Class Access: Crusader, Otataral Knight, Swordsage, Warblade.

Maneuver List
Dragonís Dance (Stance, 1st): Remove ability to cast defensively in an area based on Sense Motive ranks.
Dust Suffused Alloy (Boost, 1st): Gain a +1 bonus to AC & saves versus spells & SLA's until the end of your next turn.
Shatter Magic (Strike, 1st): Add Dispelling touch to successful attack.
Impedance of Rust (Counter, 2nd): Block line of effect of spells up to 3rd level.
Red Madness (Strike, 2nd): Your attack robs opponent of swift and move actions during their next turn.
Rufescent Touch (Boost, 2rd): Your weapons gain the Bane ability versus creatures with a caster level; as well as creatures that have been summoned or conjured by spell.
Scales of Otataral (Counter, 2nd): Block line of sight versus spells and other attacks.
Carmine Crucifixion (Stance, 3rd): As Globe of Invulnerability, Lesser
Rose Colored Glasses (Boost, 3rd): See through & possibly dispel illusions.
Sever Magic (Strike, 3rd): Dispel one or more effects upon successful attack. (Slashing Dispel)
Vermillion Pursuit (Boost, 3rd): Make initiative equal to caster's +1 as immediate action.
Crimson Confusion (Strike, 4th): Your attack robs opponent of swift, move, and standard actions during their next turn.
Draining Cross (Strike, 4th): Drain charged items based on Sense Motive check.
Empty the Warrens (Strike, 4th): Opposed Sense Motive versus caster level check. Remove spells/day
Devour the False Form (Strike, 5th): Your attack deals an extra 3d10 damage as the target, if in an alternate form, change back to normal.
Rustic Meditation (Stance, 5th): Gain Blindsight, anticipate teleport, and resistance to divination.
Scarlet Gyre (Strike, 5th): Deal +1d6 damage/ spell or effect currently active on target.
Carmine Crucifixion, Greater (Stance, 6th): As Globe of Invulnerability
Otataral Fugue (Strike, 6th): Your attack renders opponent unable to perform any actions during their next turn.
Seal the Gate (Stance, 6th): Prevent creatures from being summoned or called in area.
Florid Reflection (Counter, 7th): IL versus CL Check. Success means spell is rebounded on target.
Otataral Dragon's Wing (Counter, 8th): Block line of effect of spells up to 9th level.
Rubicund Cacophony (Stance, 8th): Area determined by IL imposes 60% spell failure chance.
Dragonís Sundering Maw (Strike, 9th): Deal +15d8damage and disjoin items based on Sense Motive check.

Maneuver Descriptions
Carmine Crucifixion
Otataral Dragon (Stance)
Level: 3rd
Prereqs:
Initiation Action: Swift
Range: Personal
Target: You
Duration: Stance
Otataral Dragon initiators learn early that they need to close ground when facing their spell slinging foes. Carmine Crucifixion stance bolsters the initiatorís defenses in order to do just that.
As long as this stance is maintained, the initiator is protected as if by a globe of invulnerability, lesser. Because this is not a spell or spell-like ability, it is not subject to being dispelled.

Carmine Crucifixion, Greater
Otataral Dragon (Stance)
Level: 6th
Prereqs:
Initiation Action: Swift
Range: Personal
Target/Area: You
Duration: Stance
This stance functions as Carmine Crucifixion, except the initiator is affected by globe of invulnerability.

Crimson Confusion
Otataral Dragon (Strike)
Level: 4th
Prereqs:
Initiation Action: 1 Standard action
Range: Melee attack
Target/Area: One creature
Duration: 1 round
Saving Throw: Will partial
Your blows cause your enemies to falter in their actions. When you initiate this strike, upon a successful attack roll, your opponent must make a will save (DC= 10 + Sense Motive Modifier) or lose the ability to take any action except a full-attack or full round action until the end of the martial adeptís next turn. If the save is successful, the target is staggered until the end of their next turn.
Devour the False Form
Otataral Dragon (Strike)
Level: 5th
Prereqs: 2 Otataral Dragon Maneuvers
Initiation Action: 1 standard action
Range: Melee attack
Target/Area: One creature
Saving Throw: Fort partial
Anyone who knows anything about magic knows that casters can change their shape with ease. Otataral Dragon students are adept at breaking these disguises.
This strike, if the attack hits, the subject must make a Fort save (DC= 10 + Sense Motive Modifier) or take 3d10 points of damage as they are forced back in to their original shape. Note: Creatures with the shape-changer type are not immune to the effects of this maneuver. If the save succeeds, the subject doesnít change form, but still takes the extra damage.
Dragonís Dance
Otataral Dragon (Stance)
Level: 1st
Prereqs: ó
Initiation Action: Swift
Range: Personal
Target/Area: You
Duration: Stance
Otataral is known for its ability to disrupt and absorb magic. Students of this discipline soon garner a like reputation. This basic stance is the first step on the long and rusty road.
While this stance is active, all opponents within the affected area (see below) are unable to cast defensively.

{table=head]
Sense Motive Ranks|
Area Covered

4-8|10í
9-13|20í
14-18|40í
19+|50í[/table]

Draining Cross
Otataral Dragon
Level: 4th
Prereqs: 1 Otataral Dragon Maneuver
Initiation Action: 1 move action
Range: 25í + 5í/IL
Target/Area: One creature
Duration: Instant
Saving Throw: Fort negates
This strange technique robs energy from various magical items. Initiating Draining Cross forces all items a creature has on their person that have charges (wands, rods, staves, certain wondrous item, etc.) to make a fort save (DC= 10 + Sense Motive Modifier) or be drained of a number of charges equal to Ĺ your IL.

Dragonís Sundering Maw
Otataral Dragon (Strike)
9th
Prereqs: 4 Otataral Dragon maneuvers
Initiation Action: 1 Full-round action
Range: Melee strike
Target/Area: One creature
Duration: ó
Saving Throw: Fortitude partial
Dragonís Sundering Maw is the ultimate Otataral Dragon attack. It rends magic from its target, in some cases permanently.
As a full-round action, you make a number of touch attacks up to your maximum number of attacks in a full attack action. Your opponent makes a fortitude save (DC= 10+ your Sense Motive Modifier + number of successful touch attacks). A failed save means that any spell effects and/or magic items with caster levels equal to or lower than your initiator level are permanently disjoined. Effects higher than your initiator level are suppressed for 24 hours, and artifacts are inert for 1 hour.
A successful save suppresses effects ≤ your initiator level for 24 hours and those greater than your IL for 1 hour. In either case, the target takes your normal melee damage and an additional 15d8 points of damage.

Dust Suffused Alloy
Otataral Dragon (Boost)
Level: 1st
Prereqs: 1 Otataral Dragon maneuver
Initiation Action: 1 immediate action
Range: Personal
Target/Area: You
Duration: 1 round / 3 ILís
Otataral is often worked into other metals in order to infuse weapons and armor with its anti-magic properties. Otataral Dragon adepts use similar techniques on themselves.
When you initiate this boost, you gain a +1 bonus to AC and saves versus spells and spell-like abilities until the end of your next turn. In addition, you gain spell resistance equal to 10 + your Sense Motive Ranks + 1/2 your IL that you can lower & raise as a free action until the duration expires.
Empty the Warrens
Otataral Dragon
Level: 4th
Prereqs: 1 Otataral Dragon maneuver
Initiation Action: 1 standard action
Range: Touch
Target/Area: One creature
Duration: Instant
While Draining Cross targets items, Empty the Warrens targets the caster itself. Once the initiator succeeds on a touch attack, the target must make a fortitude save (DC= 10 + Sense Motive Modifier) or lose one prepared spell/spell per day/use of SLA per spell level for every 5 initiator levels you have. A successful save means the target only loses one spell per spell level.

Florid Reflection
Otataral Dragon (Counter)
Level: 7th
Prereqs: 3 Otataral Dragon maneuvers
Initiation Action: 1 immediate action
Range: Personal
Target/Area: One spell effect
Rays, bolts, blasts, orbs; man, who needs Ďem? Otataral Dragon adepts know that many spells casters use on them can only affect one target at a time. This maneuver helps them make sure that target isnít them.
When you are the target of a spell effect, you may initiate this counter. You make a Sense Motive check in opposition to the effectís attack roll, or caster level. If you beat the total, you are not affected. If you beat the total by 10 or more, you bounce that effect back at the caster. If you win by 15 or more, you choose a new target for the spell effect.

Impedance of Rust
Otataral Dragon (Counter)
Level: 2nd
Prereqs: 2 Otataral Dragon maneuvers
Initiation Action: 1 immediate action
Range: 100í + 10í/ IL
Target/Area: 1 spell effect
Duration: Instant
You sense a spell being cast that could destroy you and/or your companions. The otataral that infuses you seems to take hold of your limbs as you spring to action.
When you initiate Impedance of Rust, you create a cloud of otataral dust that blocks the line of effect of a 3rd level or lower spell cast within the maneuverís range.

Otataral Dragonís Wing
Otataral Dragon (Counter)
Level: 8th
Prereqs: Three Otataral Dragon maneuvers
Initiation Action: 1 immediate action
Range: 400í + 40í/IL
Target/Area: One spell effect
Duration: Instant
This maneuver is an improved version of Impedance of Rust. It blocks line of effect for spells of up to 9th level.

Otataral Fugue
Otataral Dragon (Strike)
Level: 6th
Prereqs: Two Otataral Dragon maneuvers
Initiation Action: 1 standard action
Range: Melee attack
Target/Area: One creature
Duration: 1 round
Like Crimson Confusion and Red Madness, this maneuver robs the creature struck of their actions. You initiate this maneuver with a melee attack. If the attack hits, the target must make a will save (DC= 10 + Sense Motive Modifier) or be rendered unable to act until after the martial adepts next turn. If the save succeeds, the target may take only one move action until the end of the initiator's next turn.

Red Madness
Otataral Dragon (Strike)
Level: 2nd
Prereqs:
Initiation Action: 1 standard action
Range: Melee attack
Target/Area: One creature
Duration: 1 round
Students of this discipline know that time is important to spell casters. Red Madness helps disrupt that precious resource.
You initiate this maneuver with a melee attack. If successful, the target rolls a (DC= 10 + Sense Motive Modifier) or be denied the use of swift or move actions until the end of the martial adeptís next turn.

Rose Colored Glasses
Otataral Dragon (Boost)
Level: 3rd
Prereqs:
Initiation Action: 1 immediate action
Range: Personal
Target/Area: You
Duration: 1 round
Many a warrior has fallen through a false floor, been knocked prone by a shadow evocation, or cowered before a terrifying beast made of nothing but light. All they needed was Rose Colored Glasses.
When you initiate this boost, you gain a bonus to save versus illusion (all types) spells equal to your initiator level. If you failed to disbelieve an illusion previously, you are able to make another save with the bonus. If your save beats the DC by ten or more, the illusion is dispelled.

Rubicund Cacophony
Otataral Dragon (Stance)
Level: 8th
Prereqs: 3 Otataral Dragon maneuvers
Initiation Action: Swift
Range: Personal
Target/Area: You
Duration: Stance
When you enter this stance, it creates a field of unstable energy that can disrupt casters. In an area of 10í + 5í/IL, any spell cast is subject to a 60% failure chance.

Rustic Meditation
Otataral Dragon (Stance)
Level: 5th
Prereqs: 2 Otataral Dragon maneuvers
Initiation Action: Swift
Range: Personal
Target/Area: You
Duration: Stance
Invisibility and teleporting are two banes of those who take on casters. Rustic meditation helps even the odds. As long as you are in this stance, you gain the ability to see invisibility and anticipate teleport in a 5í/IL radius emanation centered on you.

Rufescent Touch
Otataral Dragon (Boost)
Level: 2nd
Prereqs:
Initiation Action: swift
Range: Personal
Target/Area: Weapons wielded
Duration: 1 round
Your weapons become laced with rusty veins and pulse with a sickly red light. They cry out for the blood of magi and monsters.
Your weapons deal +2d6 +1/IL points of damage to any opponents you strike who cast spells, use spell-like abilities, or are creatures summoned by spell. You also gain a +4 bonus to confirm critical hits made on such creatures.

Scales of Otataral
Otataral Dragon (Counter)
Level: 2nd
Prereqs:
Initiation Action: 1 immediate action
Range: 100í + 10í/IL
Target/Area: Sheet of otataral dust up to 20í long/IL, or a ring w/ a radius of 5í/2ILís. 20í high in either case
Duration: 1 round
You swing your weapon in an arc close to the ground. From any point within range, you kick up a wall or ring of otataral dust that blocks line of sight to all of the creatures in that area until the end of your next turn. The dust does not hamper the ability of those inside the effect to make attacks versus targets on the other.

Scarlet Gyre
Otataral Dragon (Strike)
Level: 5th
Prereqs: 2 Otataral Dragon maneuvers
Initiation Action: Standard
Range: Melee attack
Target/Area: One creature
Duration: Instant
This strike tears down those who would hide behind magic for protection. When you initiate Scarlet Gyre, you make a melee attack against any creature you threaten. As you do so, the magical aura of a creature or object is disrupted, creating a damaging feedback reaction of arcane power.
The target takes 1d6 points of damage per spell level of each functioning spell or spell-like ability currently affecting it (maximum 25d6).
For example, a creature who is hasted (3rd level), flying (3rd level), and protected by a stoneskin spell (4th-level wizard version) takes 10d6 points of damage (Will save for half . DC= 10 + Sense Motive modifier).
In addition, any creature that fails its save must then succeed on a fortitude save (DC same as will save) or be dazed for 1d6 rounds.
Only spells specifically targeted on the creature in question can be used to create the backlash of scarlet gyre, so spells that affect an area (such as invisibility sphere and solid fog) can't be used to deal damage to creatures within their area.
Likewise, persistent or continuous effects from magic items can't be used to deal feedback damage, but targeted spell effects can beófor example, the magic of a cloak of resistance can't be used by scarlet gyre, but a spell cast by a wand of invisibility could be.

Seal the Gate
Otataral Dragon (Stance)
Level: 6th
Prereqs: 2 Otataral Dragon maneuvers
Initiation Action: Swift
Range: Personal
Target/Area: You
Duration: Stance
Tales are told of a rust colored dragon hanged on a cross that faces a portal. No one knows where the door leads to, all they know is that the presence of the dragon is keeping whateverís on the other side out.
For the duration of this stance, any opponent casting a spell with the [summoning] or [calling] descriptor must make a caster level check versus the adeptís Sense Motive. The caster suffers a penalty equal to the level of the spell being cast. If the check succeeds, the spell is cast as normal. If not, the spell fails.
Sever Magic
Otataral Dragon (Strike)
Level: 3rd
Prereqs:
Initiation Action: Standard
Range: Melee attack
Target/Area: One Creature
Duration: Instant
With a successful melee attack, you strip away spell energy infused in a creature, turning it against them in a harmful burst. In addition to your melee damage, the creature you strike is also subject to the effects of slashing dispel.

Shatter Magic
Otataral Dragon (Strike)
Level: 1st
Prereqs:
Initiation Action: Standard
Range: Melee attack
Target/Area: One creature
Duration: Instant
Fighting magic users is often like slicing an onion. You must go through layer after layer of effects. One of the most basic maneuvers the Otataral Adept learns is how to start tearing those walls down.
The creature you strike to initiate this maneuver is dealt your attack damage and suffers the effect of dispelling touch.

Vermillion Pursuit
Otataral Dragon (Counter)
Level: 3rd
Prereqs: 1 Otataral Dragon maneuver
Initiation Action: Free
Range: 10í
Target/Area: You or one ally
Duration: ó
For many casters, going first in a fight means the difference between winning and losing a battle; Vermillion Pursuit is often a difference maker.
As a free action, you make your (or an ally within range) initiative count equal to the highest initiative +1. This changes the targetís initiative count. The target of this maneuver cannot act again on their on their original initiative.

Just to Browse
2013-05-30, 03:55 AM
I think of three things when I think of anti-mages:
Go to town, Lockdown: He stops people who cast spells. Interrupt abilities, immediate-action dispels, and passive spell failure are good choices. Cool things include forcing casters to roll on spell feedback tables. When not fighting casters, he's an off-tank because some of his abilities can also interrupt advancing enemies.
Merc Treads, the Magi-Tank: Reduce and ignore crowd control effects (stuns, fear, etc.), usually coupled with high defenses of all kinds (including spell /energy/damage resistance). He runs to casters and cuts out their squishy bits because they can't kill him. Cool things include cutting through fireballs. When not fighting casters he's great for standing near high-priority targets and wailing on them (or protecting them!)
A knife through bufftter, The Buff Cutter: He plays the game of rocket-launcher tag with a faster rocket. Usually with low defenses, but high damage output and the ability to ignore or even dispel buffs when he attacks (like without a check). Cool things include smelling magic and ignoring pesky things like invisibility. When not fighting casters he can still hand out damage and ignore cover.

Which one did you have in mind?

Ra_Va
2013-05-30, 04:33 AM
Fairly certain there is a prestige class is Forgotten Realms with a 'Slay Mage' ability.

Yitzi
2013-05-30, 08:35 AM
And of course, as OotS showed recently, the ability to ignore defensive casting is very important for this.

Selenir
2013-05-30, 09:26 AM
Maybe something as simple as having a "wild magic aura" could help greatly - screws up any spell effects/spellcasts in the vicinity.

I like the Mercury's Treads reference. :P Somebody get a Banshee's Veil up in here!

LordErebus12
2013-06-16, 03:26 AM
There are three fighter bonus feats dealing with mage slaying in Complete Arcane, but all lower your caster level.

Mage Slayer, Pierce Magical Concealment, and Pierce Magical Protection

if you do go the TOB route, it might be worth looking into since it wont penalize you for taking them.

Hanuman
2013-06-16, 04:06 AM
I
Merc Treads, the Magi-Tank:
I see what you did there.


Anyway, track em down, slip by effects, resist tricks, lock em down, slay them.

Weaknesses:
-Weave or Divine Connection Dependent
-Produces Magical Aura
-Low Fort
-Requires Concentration
-Often Requires Verbal, Semantic, Material or Divine Focus
-Requires setup, when ambushed a mage is decent to manage
-Low hitpoints

http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0199.html
Miko has a completely valid way too, rain plus entanglement.

So this means a mage slayer is stealthy, probably undetectable and able to hide any signature shes producing that can be detected by magic. A dampening field.

At higher levels you can start playing around with disrupting the weave, snipping the strings of magic itself, this will create wild magic and null-magic zones.

Fort is usually death attacks and poisons, since you are an assassin-type this is contextually on course. Perhaps make the death attack be based on how much max HP they have for a double-whammy weakness.

If you can silence the caster, disable her hands, take away her material components (which can be done even with a slight of hand check actually) or disable a caster's divine focus you'll cut off a lot of her prep.

If you can grapple, entangle, or otherwise harass a caster you can take her down fast. A class ability which adds free passive ACF to your targets will go a long way to bring down arcane casters, though you could have this apply to divine casters too. Why not.

Rainbownaga
2013-06-17, 01:12 AM
And of course, as OotS showed recently, the ability to ignore defensive casting is very important for this.

Sadly that was a fantasy that Xyclon forgotcto 5' step and had no cross class ranks in tumble.

The best mageslayer class Ive seen on the boards was a rogue type. It had thecability to break into non-dimensional spaces and kill them while they rope-tricked.

Fighting toe to toe with a wizard is relatively easy. it's keeping her there long enough to kill her that's tricky.

Yitzi
2013-06-17, 06:52 AM
Sadly that was a fantasy that Xyclon forgotcto 5' step and had no cross class ranks in tumble.

You're right; some way to avoid the enemy moving away would be needed too.


Fighting toe to toe with a wizard is relatively easy. it's keeping her there long enough to kill her that's tricky.

Or having the other party members set up something that the enemy wizard has to stay and confront, or lose the larger war. Or attacking something that the enemy wizard has to stay and defend.

Durazno
2013-06-17, 02:06 PM
A dimensional anchor effect might be handy, but at a certain point you might start to feel like you're fighting magic with magic.

Cheiromancer
2013-06-17, 02:39 PM
I don't think there can or should be a mage-slayer that is good against every kind of mage. But ones that provide counters against common tricks would be good. That negate the ability to escape magically or cast defensively. Or that use poisons. Or that steal spells with every successful hit (like a spell-thief).

Some kind of spell stowaway feature might work, particularly with teleportation magic. Maybe a special tumble check to follow the mage through the astral rift (or whatever) that a teleport or dimension door leaves? And I do like the idea of a mage-slayer breaking into a rope trick (or other extra-dimensional space). Maybe it is a hound of Tindalos that pursues the mage, and the mage-slayer is just along for a mop-up?

(I don't know what the stats for a hound of Tindalos are. (edit: Pathfinder has one! Pretty neat, too.) There might be several versions, each with different strengths and vulnerabilities. One might just be a figment, and so immune to its victim's attacks. Another is a dimension traveling yeth hound, with much better stats and protections, but whose bay leaves someone shaken, regardless of mental protections.)

It would be neat if a mage's familiar could be co-opted, or secretly replaced. Who else could better spy out the mage's secrets and discover his vulnerabilities?

Find a way to curse a wizard's spellbook; the effect of the curse is to give a designated assassin the blanket ability to overcome and negate all the wizard's spells. Then the wizard would be highly vulnerable.

Use a mirror of opposition or similar magic to make a wizard fight his own duplicate. Then move in with a secondary strike force.

If a wizard has true seeing or similar magic, make it so that a close associate seems like a disguised doppelganger or outsider. Then the mage will use up resources fighting an ally. Plus he won't be sure if the next disguised doppelganger he discovers will be a real imposter or not.

I guess what I am saying is that you should find ways to transform a mage's strengths into vulnerabilities, and encourage him to waste his resources. Then it is time to send in a mage-slayer.

Yitzi
2013-06-17, 09:36 PM
A dimensional anchor effect might be handy, but at a certain point you might start to feel like you're fighting magic with magic.

I figure that a mage-slayer and mage-catcher need not be the same thing. I see no problem with having one one-way dimensional anchor effect (i.e. you can teleport in but not out) set by another caster (possibly a specialized half-caster, or a full-caster who works part-time or is going up against several full-casters) to trap a sensitive place that the enemy will attack, and then a mage-slayer to actually kill the enemy once he can't teleport out.

Realms of Chaos
2013-06-18, 05:28 PM
In my mind, an effective mage slayer is possible but because of the nature of magic, doing anything short of turning magic off directly does nothing against a "prepared caster".

Any mode of uncertain attack, whether it needs an attack roll or allows a saving throw or skill check or whatever, will have a spell that lets the caster ignore it.

Any mode of incomplete defense, whether being quantified like spell resistance or being encompassed in a number of specific immunities, will allow casters to just work around you with mind-controlled/summoned minions or boulders flung via telekinesis or the like.

No, if you want someone to fight magic "effectively", I feel that you pretty much have to go all of the way. This (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=117233) was my attempt at doing so.

Yitzi
2013-06-18, 06:58 PM
In my mind, an effective mage slayer is possible but because of the nature of magic, doing anything short of turning magic off directly does nothing against a "prepared caster".

Any mode of uncertain attack, whether it needs an attack roll or allows a saving throw or skill check or whatever, will have a spell that lets the caster ignore it.

Any mode of incomplete defense, whether being quantified like spell resistance or being encompassed in a number of specific immunities, will allow casters to just work around you with mind-controlled/summoned minions or boulders flung via telekinesis or the like.

No, if you want someone to fight magic "effectively", I feel that you pretty much have to go all of the way. This (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=117233) was my attempt at doing so.

Whereas I feel it can be done, either by having so many attack modes that he can't defend against all of them, or by having an attack mode that explicitly bypasses the usual magical defenses, and similarly for defense.

Dethklok
2013-06-18, 10:50 PM
Primarily, before magic resistance and anything else, a mage slayer needs to be able to close distance - especially to slip past warriors or anything else that may guard wizards - and then deal horrific melee damage. I'd say that the most effective mage killer should be modeled after rogues, not warriors.

Yitzi
2013-06-19, 12:08 AM
Primarily, before magic resistance and anything else, a mage slayer needs to be able to close distance - especially to slip past warriors or anything else that may guard wizards - and then deal horrific melee damage.

I'm not so sure; a mage slayer needs to be able to get past low-level minions, but I'm not so sure that a mage slayer needs to be able to beat a warrior/wizard team-up. After all, a large part of the goal of making a mage slayer is to transform the tier system into a more balanced rock-paper-scissors business, so if it's made warriors necessary, it's achieved one of its main goals.

Tvtyrant
2013-06-19, 12:23 AM
Chain Dispel magic and immediate action spell countering, along with ranged touch attack deflection and immunity to magic like a Golem. That deals with mid range casters if they do not have Contingencies, and if you dispel the contingencies maybe even then.

Xhosant
2013-06-19, 03:05 AM
high counter-spelling capability

Something along the line of "magical synchronization". By excuse of his affinity for magic but lack of personal magic, you can follow any effect of magical movement used within a certain range. If the target flies by magic, you can fly along with him too (as long as you stay near him), teleporting similarly transports you too, etc.

Clingy anti-caster aura, meaning that enemies leaving your threat range cannot cast for a round. Those near you unaffected.

Disrupting Counterattack: weak strike, but prevents/ makes difficult casting for the round.

You get a will save to ignore any and all magical effects. Effects that allow a save let you choose between the spell's and this effect's save.

Smite Arcane, obviously, and several uses at that. Not usable with unarmed strikes (a.k.a. your anti-magic attack)

In return, you are squishy, not ranged or caster, and have no gap-closers. If you get in the caster's face he's in trouble, but he can try to stop you, and if you get in someone else's face you're in trouble too.

Hanuman
2013-06-19, 03:20 AM
Re-thinking the OP's post text, I think I've got my favorite way to solve this.

Weave eating.

Basically have your abilities powered by the destruction and disharmonyof the weave, which could expand into epic levels with nuclear-bomb type blasts that just destroy and screw with the weave creating immense wild magic zones, dead magic zones and zones that spawn anomalies (like int S.T.A.L.K.E.R.).

Cheiromancer
2013-06-19, 07:46 AM
Person Man gives some awesome advice (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=3832537&postcount=22) on how to best use the mage slayer feat in a build. I wonder if instead of building a whole class, one could not simply homebrew a feat or two to supplement the mage slayer line of feats.

For instance, if a feat can prevent a spellcaster you threaten from casting defensively, why not a feat that prevents swift and immediate spells? Or at least slows them down to move equivalent actions that provoke attacks of opportunity.

You'd need to have something to prevent contingent spells from going off. Come to think of it, anything that blocks immediate spells should work to prevent contingent spells, too.