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eftexar
2013-07-03, 10:06 PM
Scholar

Playing a Scholar
Abilities: Intelligence helps with skill points, Charisma boost save DCs for their spells, and, as always, constitution helps with survivability. Dexterity helps with defenses, but strength is pretty much a dump stat.

Organization: Scholars can be found in many an academia.

Alignment: A Scholar can be of any alignment. The pursuit of knowledge does lend itself better towards law than chaos though.

Religion: Like scientists in our world Scholars tend to lean more towards atheism than most other classes. Non-the-less many worship deities and, more often than not, these are gods of knowledge.

Background: While younger people are less likely to pursue this path, as the elderly are generally wiser and better learned, it isn't as uncommon as you would think. Either way their backgrounds vary more dramatically from here.

Races: Both Humans and Elves are the most likely to see value in the pursuit of information and magic. Orc don't usually have the brains and Dwarves prefer a more direct approach to their problems. Other races often just don't have the drive.

Other Classes: Wizards grudgingly respect them, while Clerics are usually confounded, sometimes reacting violently, at the idea of an arcane caster channeling positive energy.
Fighters and Rogues can get along fine as long as they aren't hotheads, while Sorcerers and Barbarians both think they are wasting their time being stuffy.

Role: A Scholar fills a similar role as the Wizard. They don't have nearly as much power to bear, but their wide utility, coupled with their animal companion, lends to a variety of secondary roles.
Hit Die: d6

Starting Gold: as Rogue

Skills: Appraise (Int), Bluff (Cha), Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Decipher Script (Int), Escape Artist (Dex), Forgery (Int), Gather Info. (Cha), Heal (Wis), Knowledge (all, taken individually) (Int), Listen (Wis), Peform (Cha), Profession (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis), Spot (Wis), Spellcraft (Int), and Use Magic Device (Cha).

Skill Points: 8 + Int mod (x 4 at first level)

{table=head]{colsp=6}Scholar|{colsp=4}
Spells per Day|{colsp=2}
Invocations

Level|BAB|Fort|Ref|Will|Special|
1st|
2nd|
3rd|
4th|Known|Max. Rank

1st|+0|+0|+2|+2|Familiar, Lorekeeper, Analysis|
|
|
|
|
|

2nd|+1|+0|+3|+3|Sense Magic|
|
|
|
|
1|
Least

3rd|+1|+1|+3|+3|Area of Study, Mettle|
|
|
|
|
2|

4th|+2|+1|+4|+4||
2|
|
|
|
2|

5th|+2|+1|+4|+4|Identify|
3|
|
|
|
2|

6th|+3|+2|+5|+5|Allowance -1|
3|
|
|
|
3|
Lesser

7th|+3|+2|+5|+5|Reserve|
4|
|
|
|
3|

8th|+4|+2|+6|+6|Metamagic Feat|
4|
1|
|
|
4|

9th|+4|+3|+6|+6||
4|
2|
|
|
4|

10th|+5|+3|+7|+7|Reserve|
5|
3|
|
|
4|

11th|+5|+3|+7|+7||
5|
3|
1|
|
5|
Greater

12th|+6/+1|+4|+8|+8|Metamagic Feat, Allowance -2|
5|
4|
2|
|
5|

13th|+6/+1|+4|+8|+8|Reserve|
5|
4|
3|
|
6|

14th|+7/+2|+4|+9|+9||
6|
4|
3|
1|
6|

15th|+7/+2|+5|+9|+9|With a Glance|
6|
5|
4|
2|
6|

16th|+8/+3|+5|+10|+10|Metamagic Feat, Reserve|
6|
5|
4|
3|
7|
Dark

17th|+8/+3|+5|+10|+10||
6|
5|
4|
3|
7|

18th|+9/+4|+6|+11|+11|Allowance -3|
6|
5|
5|
4|
8|

19th|+9/+4|+6|+11|+11|Reserve|
6|
6|
5|
4|
8|

20th|+10/+5|+6|+12|+12|Metamagic Feat|
6|
6|
5|
4|
8|

[/table]

Proficiencies: The Scholar is proficient with all simple weapons, but he is not, however, proficient with any armor or shields of any kind.

Class Abilities
Spellcasting
The Scholar, as a spontaneous caster, can cast a limited number of arcane spells. Unlike other casters he can learn from any spell list arcane or divine. He learns a new spell, of any level that he can cast, at every level of Scholar starting his fourth.
He can only cast so many spells per day, as indicated, though he does gain bonus spells for a high intelligence. The Scholar may expend a higher level spell slot to cast a lower level spell.
The saving throw for any of his spells has a DC of 10 + 1/2 his caster level + his charisma modifier. If he expends a higher spell slot, than necessary to cast the spell, this DC increases by +2.
At his 6th level of Scholar, and every 4 after, he may trade one of his spells known for another spell. It needn't be of the same level and may very well be of a higher level than the one he has replaced.

Cantrips
The Scholar begins with 3 cantrips and 2 orisons. He can cast them a combined, limited, number of times, equal to 3 + his intelligence bonus (if any), per day.

Spell Book
Beyond his normal spells he has access to a spell book he can cast additional spells from. Spells learned, see spellcasting, are memorize not written in this book.
He can write any number of spells, for who's level he can normally cast, inside of a spell book, but must transcribe them from complex texts or learn them under the tutelage of another spellcaster.
To cast a spell from this book he must spend a move action looking for it and has a 1d4 x 10% chance of not being able to find it. He can leave it open, eliminating this round of searching, but still has a chance of not being able to find it.
Spells cast from his spell book are too difficult to use for him to apply metamagic feats to them. They otherwise, however, function as any other spells, including the need for spell slots.

Familiar
The Scholar may pick a familiar from the same list as the Sorcerer, likely from this list: Bat, Cat, Lizard, Owl, Rat, Raven, Snake, Toad, and Weasel. Other lists, which are outside the Player's Handbook, show more possibilities.
This familiar, instead of gaining levels of it's own, advances by bonus HD gained based on his Scholar level. See the table below for details on this advancement and the abilities garnered therein.
Should this companion die the Scholar can't replace it, but may resurrect it, as if with True Resurrection, with 4 hours of uninterrupted meditation. It is not subject to level loss from any source (even resurrection).

{table=head]Scholar Level|
Bonus HD|
Int/Cha Adj.|
Str/Dex Adj.|
Bonus Tricks|Special
1st-2nd|
+2|
+0|
+1|
3|Status, Share Spells
3rd-5th|
+4|
+1|
+1|
4|Evasion
6th-8th|
+6|
+2|
+2|
5|Spell-like Ability (1st)
9th-11th|
+8|
+3|
+2|
6|Size Increase
12th-14th|
+10|
+4|
+3|
7|
15th-17th|
+12|
+5|
+3|
8|Spell-like Ability (2nd)
18th-20th|
+14|
+6|
+4|
9|
[/table]

In addition to a bonus to their HD, and ability scores, a Familiar gains bonus tricks and some special abilities:
1. Status (Su)
The Scholar, and his Familiar, are always aware of one another as detailed within the Status spell. See the Player's Handbook for more information.

1. Share Spells (Su)
Anytime the Scholar affects himself with a spell, with a range of personal or touch, he may also choose to affect his familiar companion as well. His familiar must be within 60ft of himself to do this.

3. Evasion (Ex)
Whenever the Familiar succeeds on a reflex save to reduce the effects of an attack, or hazard, they still negate them. This doesn't affect other effects that wouldn't have been reduced or negated with a successful save.

6, 15. Spell-like Abilities
At each of the indicated levels the Familiar gains a spell, of a level no higher than that indicated, as a spell-like ability. The Familiar can cast each 3/day and the saving throw has a DC of 10 + their Bonus HD + their charisma modifier.

9. Size Increase (Ex)
The Familiar gains reach, and deals damage, as if one single size larger.
The Scholar's bond with this familiar also grant it special abilities. They stack with each other, and other abilities, unless noted otherwise. At every odd level, except for 3rd, of Scholar he may choose one from the following list for his familiar companion to benefit from:

+5 Hit points
Energy resistance 5 (pick two: acid, cold, electricity, fire)
+1 competence bonus on all damage rolls
+2 insight bonus on initiative checks
+4 ranks in any skill that is trained or can be used untrained
+1 resistance bonus on all saves
+1 dodge bonus to AC
+1 competence bonus on attack rolls
Damage reduction 1/
Gain a monstrous feat they qualify for
Gain a tag team feat they qualify for
Gain a fighter feat they qualify for
Gain extra use of spell-like ability gained through Scholar class


Lorekeeper (Ex)
The Scholar gains the Bardic Knowledge ability as a Bard level equal to his total Scholar levels.

Analysis (Ex)
The Scholar may, as a swift action, study a creature in his line of sight, within 60ft, by making an opposed intelligence check against them.
Upon success, he learns three of the most important weaknesses and strengths of his subject. He can make further attempts to discern additional information about the creature in question.

Lv2+ > Invocations
The Scholar learns new invocations, at the indicated levels, drawn from the Warlock list. These function as for the Warlock, except that the saving throw for any invocation has a DC of 10 + 1/2 his caster level + his charisma modifier.

Lv2 > Sense Magic (Su)
As a standard action the Scholar may become aware of all magic auras, and their locations, within 30ft of himself.
He can also focus upon a single such aura to learn it's strength, see Detect Magic, and can make a spellcraft check, at DC of 15 + the spell's level, to determine the school of magic it possesses.

Lv3 > Area of Study
Picking a single Cleric domain of his choice, the Scholar gains the indicated power and learns it's spells, when he would have access to their level, in addition to those normally chosen through leveling.

Lv3 > Mettle (Ex)
The Scholar can shed the effects of any ongoing, or permanent, mind affects with a successful will save. He loses his next standard action regardless of whether or not he succeeds on this saving throw.

Lv5 > Identify (Ex)
With 5 minutes of of study the Scholar can discover the properties of almost any magic item as if with the Identify spell.

Lv6+ > Metamagic Allowance (Su)
The Scholar ignores the indicated number of levels, from metamagic feats, for each spell that he casts. This is an overall reduction for all those applied to a single spell, so doesn't stack for multiple feats used.

Lv7, 10, 13, 16, 19 > Reserves
At each of the indicated levels the Scholar gains a new reserve feat, see Complete Mage, that he qualifies for.
As long as he meets the prerequisites needed to use a particular reserve feat he counts his highest level spell, or requisite type of spell, available as if it were equal to half his Scholar level (to maximum of 10th level spell; but only if it would be higher).

Lv8, 12, 16, 20 > Metamagic Feats
At each of the indicated levels the Scholar gains a new metamagic feat, that he qualifies for, of his choice.

Lv15 > With a Glance (Ex)
The Scholar can study any number of targets with his Analysis ability. He makes a single check against all of them.
Design Notes
The Wizard has never cut it for me, because, frankly, too much power is boring (at least in my opinion). So here I'm attempting to create one that isn't so, but still has the same incredible flexibility as the original casting class.

I took most of my inspiration from anime, but also a little from Novels and the Fire Emblem series. The Slayers series aside many of these spellcasters have mediocre power and rely on others, often a mascot, to back them up.

At the same time though I want a class that can be played in the same game as full spellcasters and still hold their own with a variety of unique options such classes generally lack.

eftexar
2013-07-03, 10:23 PM
-reserved for [Tag Team] feats-

free to post

Xerlith
2013-07-04, 01:37 AM
In combat, this is completely useless until around 6th level. Maybe make the class get spells from 1st level onwards, give it 5th level spells and a reserve feat every 4-5 levels?
But for the reserve feats to be actually useful, you might want to proc them off of 1/2 the Scholar level.

eftexar
2013-07-04, 02:11 AM
I can definitely see setting reserve feats to level. Will do.

You don't think what basically amounts to an animal companion will make the class viable for combat at early levels though? I was really trying to keep to 4th level spells, but if it's not possible...

Xerlith
2013-07-04, 02:16 AM
The animals you get are too weak for this to work.
You may want to grant the Improved Familiar feat for free OR make the animals really strong.

Just to Browse
2013-07-04, 03:12 PM
This class is actually useless for 20 levels. The invocations help a little, but you're generally sitting on no personal combat utility due to no BAB, HP, and terrible spell saves. You've also got no buff abilities because you don't get anything worthwhile in the buff department until level 8, at which point your friends can literally buy persisted items of your buff spells without batting an eye. Your familiar is about as helpful as a monk and you're stuck with him for 4 whole levels.

I can see this class underperforming against the fighter.

Xerlith
2013-07-04, 04:33 PM
This could work if it had the Wizard spell level progression (and got 9s), but got only spells from one arcane school + one domain. A sort of a narrowly-specialized theurge.
Also, Medium BAB.

Pyromancer999
2013-07-04, 07:26 PM
This could work if it had the Wizard spell level progression (and got 9s), but got only spells from one arcane school + one domain. A sort of a narrowly-specialized theurge.

This would work, except for the fact that it's been established that not all schools were created equal. Someone taking this class then would most likely just choose Conjuration or Transmuation, then be in their merry way.


Also, Medium BAB.

Adding this, and not the 9th level spell option, would probably be a good starting point. Other things that could be added could be perhaps granting the Scholar the Improved Familiar feat as a bonus feat, as well as a few things I'm going to detail a bit below:

-Your spellcasting ability class feature states that the Scholar's spells increase their DC by 2 for casting them in a higher level spell slot. This is a good idea, but not the best implementation of it. Perhaps you could add on a separate class feature that allows spells to be modified (in ways that don't overlap with and/or complement Metamagic feats) by expending higher level spell slots and that increase the benefit the wider the gap between the level of the spell slot expended and the actual level of the spell. You could also just do other class features that improve spells in a non-Metamagic fashion. I would recommend in addition that you remove the move action limitation on spellcasting, or at least change the limitation to something that would not make their casting even a normal spell take an entire round, hugely bumping up the time it takes to cast a spell. You should also clarify whether or not this is a prepared or spontaneous spellcaster.

-You may want to clarify the spells known bit. It says they have a spell book, but then states they can trade out a spell known at 6th and every 4 levels after. This does not make sense if they have a spell book, as they have no need to swap out for a new spell when they can just get a new one without having to give up any spells. Of course, this could make for a seed for an interesting class feature where a Scholar can somewhat remember other spells not in their spell book, perhaps giving them the ability to change a spell slot prepared/use a spell slot to cast a spell they don't know 1/day or something, giving increased uses throughout the levels. Just a suggestion.

Lore232
2013-07-04, 11:20 PM
:smallbiggrin:I realy like the concept, maybe go with the adepts (the npc class) spell prgression and say he can cast divine spells, and from the diviantion, universal, abjuration, tranumutation schools for his spell list.

Another thing maybe give him more invocations, add 0 level spells to his table instead of the cantrip thing. Use the invocations for those dead levels

Hope this helps

Waker
2013-07-04, 11:39 PM
As others have said, you won't be able to contribute much in the first few levels. Perhaps give him an Eldritch Blast or some other lesser magical abilities to hold him off til he gets access to spells.

Xerlith
2013-07-05, 02:21 AM
Sorry, I didn't specify. Two slots per spell level, one for domain spells, one for only one spell of the chosen school. Maybe make it so this could be "spontaneous", being able to choose and cast only one spell of that school.

eftexar
2013-07-05, 02:04 PM
Ok... A lot of great feedback since I've last posted. I'd like to keep the animals the same so I think I'll buff them up, maybe with a menu of abilities to select from, or list of improvements secret lore style, over several levels.

Just to Browse, I think you are perhaps being a bit harsh here. If I get the animal companion working the class should perform viably in combat.

I definitely don't want 9th level spells. I am aiming for tier 3 here. Bumping the BaB up to 15 doesn't sound like such a bad idea though. Either that or I might just give him an eldritch blast -esque ability.

I'll clarify it as a being spontaneous spellcasting, but I thought everything else was clear. Yeah I have written "Beyond his normal spells..." at the introduction of the spellbook.
Basically the class learns some spells and is able to cast additional spells that they have written into their spell book. So the extra casting time only applies to spells written in the spell book.

Also considering adding more invocations. I'll have to figure out where to add it on the table.

Just to Browse
2013-07-05, 02:22 PM
I don't see how buffing the class in order to make it better based on criticism means that criticism is any less valid. If you buff the animal companion, that means it was weak, and that just my point.

eftexar
2013-07-05, 02:47 PM
What? I think you, or I, are misinterpreting something here. I may have also overreacted because of how you opened your post. If it was my fault, then I apologize.

I merely meant that you seemed to point out the class was weak without seeming to considering how I might fix it much. It has nothing to do with a reaction of critiques not yet made before your post.


But to discuss some of your points (because I really don't want to get into an argument over a simple miscommunication):

HP doesn't, or shouldn't, need to be high, because it's a caster w/ companion. That and healing spells are accessible. See divine and arcane spell access?

I've seen the DCs are terrible disagreement before and I think it's an incredibly bad one.
Succinctly put, the new save DC averages better throughout leveling than the spell level based saves and makes lower level spells more viable at higher levels.
Also since the class scales slower the DC increases is exponentially higher:

Level 5:
Normal Spell Saves: 10 + 1 (spell level) + 4 (modifier)
New Spell Saves: 10 + 2 (caster level) + 4 (modifier)

Level 20:
Normal Spell Saves: 10 + 9 (spell level) + 8 (modifier)
New Spell Saves: 10 + 10 (caster level) + 8 (modifier)

Even if the change in scaling here weren't in place the DC would only drop by 1 or 2 points at earlier levels and gain a lead at later levels.

Xerlith
2013-07-05, 03:19 PM
Just my two pennies here.
Bard is tier 3.
Bard is stronger than this one.
Duskblade casts better than this.

Paladin has the same casting as this. With SotAO it casts on par with this + fights MUCH better.
Ergo: this seems to sit at tier 4. At best.

Buff the spellcasting up to 6th or at least 5th level, let it begin at 1st level. Take away some of the metamagic goodness for exchange.
Or maybe put some Eldritch blast-y ability or at least give the Reserve feats some meat on those bones - let half the class level count as the level of spell appropriate to shoot off the feat. Always. Up to 10th level.

Having said that, I'm afraid we'll end up overpowering it if it goes too far.

Just to Browse
2013-07-05, 03:34 PM
Ah, well I comment on the things I see. Once you fix the class I'll comment again.

I just mentioned HP because I was trying to get all the angles from which this class could be useful. It was just for making the point.

I'll admit I didn't read the spellcasting except for looking for an attribute because I assumed it was the exact same as other casting classes. My suggestion is to bold that so people like me won't autopilot right over it. My second suggestion would be to base the save off of class level (or class + PrC level) and not caster level because that is a very easy thing to increase.

eftexar
2013-07-05, 09:06 PM
I'll modify the reserve feats again and, remember, I still need to add abilities to the animals (which I have now boosted the bonus HD of). I was thinking of something along the bonuses provided by secret lore or pact augmentation every 2 levels starting at 6th.

I really don't want to raise spellcasting for thematic reasons, but I might toss something earlier on to add in an eldritch blast. I just need to figure out where to put it without flooding the lower levels too much.

And, justtobrowse, will label them in bold. But I'm not too concerned about boosting caster level, since most ways to do that won't boost it over HD and, even when they do, it's likely to only be +2 or +4. Plus its a simple way of scaling with the use of PrCs.

Lore232
2013-07-05, 10:29 PM
Looking good, another thing you might want to try is giving the familiar maybe some powers or abilities since it seems to be something he would want to use more of then a wizard of Sor.

Eldan
2013-07-06, 06:21 AM
Honestly, for a low-magic game, this one looks really good. I'd even consider dropping the invocations. Instead, I'd give it more nonmagical class features, though those are always hard to come up with.

eftexar
2013-07-06, 07:47 PM
Thanks a lot Eldan.

I'll definitely have to make an alternate version of the class with more class abilities (instead of spells) at some point, but that version will probably end up tier 4. Of course that would probably be great for a low magic world.

Of course, I'm also assuming I finally reached the tier 3 point, even if a low tier 3, in the current iteration. I think the changes to the familiar should have precipitated that.

Eldan
2013-07-07, 05:41 AM
Analysis is really a bit vague. You should perhaps give a clear definition what you find out. Especially what the difference is between it and a knowledge check, too, because a knowledge check seems to do the same.

Look into the Archivist, perhaps? A lot of its Dark Knowledge features should be right at home on this.