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View Full Version : (3.5) Martial/Sublime Arcanist - Archetype Paragon Class [PEACH]



Xerlith
2013-08-18, 09:11 AM
As both my table and I love the gish archetype, yet are constantly reminded by the game that on low levels it is almost unplayable, I made a short class that is, I hope, not too powerful while enabling the spellsword (I hate the "gish" word, sounds like someone sneezed) archetype to come to play early-on. The class comes in two variants - ToB and non-ToB, since I like it that way and I know that for some ToB is a no-go.
This should rather significantly buff melee... gishes.


The Sublime Arcanist

Alignment
Any

Hit Die
d6

Class Skills
The Sublime Arcanist's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Climb (Str), Diplomacy (Cha), Jump (Str), Knowledge (all skills) (Int), Listen (Wis), Martial Lore (Int), Profession (Wis), Spellcraft (Int), Spot (Wis), Survival (Wis), and Swim (Str).

Skill Points at Each Level
4 + Int modifier (x4 at 1st level).

Sublime Arcanist


Level
BAB
Fort
Ref
Will
Special

Spellcasting


1st
+0
+0
+0
+2
AC Bonus, Arcane Form

-


2nd
+1
+0
+0
+3
Spellstrike

+1 level of existing arcane spellcasting


3rd
+2
+1
+1
+3
Arcane Edge

+1 level of existing arcane spellcasting



Maneuvers


Known
Readied
Stances



2

2

1




3

2

1




4

3

1




Class Features
Weapon and Armor Proficiency
Sublime Arcanists are proficient with all simple weapons, two martial weapons of their choice and shortbows. They are proficient with light armor, but not with shields.

Spells per Day
At 2nd and 3rd level, you gain new spells per day (and spells known, if applicable) as if you had also gained a level in a spellcasting class you belonged to before adding the level. You do not, however, gain any other benefit a character of that class would have gained (bonus metamagic or item creation feats, bard or assassin abilities, and so on).

If you had more than one spellcasting class before you became a Sublime Arcanist, you must decide to which class you add the level of Sublime Arcanist.

If a you had no levels in a spellcasting class, you may choose to begin a sorcerer or wizard progression (So a Sublime Arcanist 2 may cast spells as a 1st level Wizard or Sorcerer), that may be progressed further by taking the appropriate base class.

Maneuvers: You begin your career with knowledge of two martial maneuvers. You are able to learn maneuvers from any three disciplines chosen by you at the first level of this class. You add the discipline skills to your skill list. Once you know a maneuver, you must ready it before you can use it.
Your maneuvers are not affected by spell resistance, and you do not provoke attacks of opportunity when you initiate one. You must meet a maneuverís prerequisite to learn it.

Maneuvers Readied: You can ready all two of the maneuvers you know at 1st level, but as you advance in level and learn more maneuvers, you must choose which maneuvers to ready. You ready your maneuvers by exercising for 5 minutes. The maneuvers you choose remain readied until you decide to exercise again and change them. You need not sleep or rest for any long period of time to ready your maneuvers; any time you spend 5 minutes in practice, you can change your readied maneuvers.
You begin an encounter with all your readied maneuvers unexpended, regardless of how many times you might have already used them since you chose them. When you initiate a maneuver, you expend it for the current encounter, so each of your readied maneuvers can be used once per encounter.

Whenever you cast a spell, you may choose to recover a number of maneuvers equal to the spell's level or your main spellcasting ability modifier, whichever would be lower. For this purpose cantrips count as 1-st level spells.

Stances Known: You begin play with knowledge of one 1st level stance from any discipline open to you. Unlike maneuvers, stances are not expended, and you do not have to ready them. All the stances you know are available to you at all times, and you can change the stance you are currently using as a swift action. A stance is an extraordinary ability unless otherwise stated in the stance description.

AC Bonus(Ex): Whether by a smart positioning or graceful movements, you are able to avoid many attacks directed at you. You add your Intelligence or Charisma modifier (whichever would be higher) as a bonus to Armor Class, so long as you wear light or no armor, are unencumbered, and do not use a shield.
These bonuses to AC apply even against touch attacks but not if you are flat-footed.
You lose these bonuses when you are immobilized or helpless, when you wear any armor heavier than light , when you carry a shield, or when you carry a medium or heavy load.
This doesn't stack with similar abilities (Such as Monk's or Swordsage's ability of the same name).

Arcane Form (Su): Beginning at 1st level, whenever you cast an arcane spell, you add the spell's level as a bonus to an attack roll and your main spellcasting ability modifier as a bonus to damage to all the attacks you make before the end of your next turn.

Spellstrike (Su): Beginning at 2nd level, you can use a standard action to cast any cantrip or touch spell you know and deliver the spell through your weapon with a melee attack. Casting a spell in this manner does not provoke attacks of opportunity. The spell must have a casting time of 1 standard action or less. If the melee attack is successful, the attack deals damage normally; then the effect of the spell is resolved.

This attack uses the weaponís critical range, but the spell effect only deals ◊2 damage on a successful critical hit, while the weapon damage uses its own critical modifier.

Alternatively, you may use a full-round action to cast and deliver an eligible spell as a part of a martial strike. The martial strike must have initiating time of a standard action.

Spellstrike applies and benefits from Arcane Form.

Arcane Edge (Su): Beginning at 3rd level, as a swift action, you may sacrifice a prepared spell or spell slot to double any slashing or piercing weapon's threat range for a number of rounds equal to the level of the spell sacrificed. This bonus does not stack wih the Improved Critical feat or the keen special weapon property.
A 0th level spell can be used with this ability. In such a case, only one attack benefits from it. The attack must be made before the end of your current turn.



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The Martial Arcanist


Alignment
Any

Hit Die
d8

Class Skills
The Martial Arcanist's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Hide (Dex), Jump (Str), Knowledge (all skills) (Int), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Profession (Wis), Spellcraft (Int), Spot (Wis), Survival (Wis), and Swim (Str).

Skill Points at Each Level
4 + Int modifier (x4 at 1st level).

Martial Arcanist


Level
BAB
Fort
Ref
Will
Special

Spellcasting


1st
+1
+2
+0
+2
AC Bonus, Arcane Form

-


2nd
+2
+3
+0
+3
Spellstrike

+1 level of existing arcane spellcasting


3rd
+3
+3
+1
+3
Arcane Edge, Bonus Feat

+1 level of existing arcane spellcasting



Class Features
Weapon and Armor Proficiency
Martial Arcanists are proficient with all simple weapons, two martial weapons of their choice and shortbows. They are proficient with light armor, but not with shields.

Spells per Day
At 2nd and 3rd level, you gain new spells per day (and spells known, if applicable) as if you had also gained a level in a spellcasting class you belonged to before adding the level. You do not, however, gain any other benefit a character of that class would have gained (bonus metamagic or item creation feats, bard or assassin abilities, and so on).

If you had more than one spellcasting class before you became a Martial Arcanist, you must decide to which class you add the level of Martial Arcanist.

If a you had no levels in a spellcasting class, you may choose to begin a sorcerer or wizard progression (So a Martial Arcanist 2 may cast spells as a 1st level Wizard or Sorcerer), that may be progressed further by taking the appropriate base class.

AC Bonus(Ex): Whether by a smart positioning or graceful movements, you are able to avoid many attacks directed at you. You add your Intelligence or Charisma modifier (whichever would be higher) as a bonus to Armor Class, so long as you wear light or no armor, are unencumbered, and do not use a shield.
These bonuses to AC apply even against touch attacks but not if you are flat-footed.
You lose these bonuses when you are immobilized or helpless, when you wear any armor heavier than light , when you carry a shield, or when you carry a medium or heavy load.
This doesn't stack with similar abilities (Such as Monk's or Swordsage's ability of the same name).

Arcane Form (Su): Beginning at 1st level, whenever you cast an arcane spell, you add the spell's level as a bonus to hit and your main spellcasting ability modifier as a bonus to your weapon damage until the end of your next turn.

Spellstrike (Su): Beginning at 2nd level, you can use a standard action to cast any cantrip or touch spell you know and deliver the spell through your weapon with a melee attack. Casting a spell in this manner does not provoke attacks of opportunity. The spell must have a casting time of 1 standard action or less. If the melee attack is successful, the attack deals damage normally; then the effect of the spell is resolved.
This attack uses the weaponís critical range, but the spell effect only deals ◊2 damage on a successful critical hit, while the weapon damage uses its own critical modifier.

Spellstrike applies and benefits from Arcane Form.

Arcane Edge (Su): Beginning at 3rd level, as a swift action, you may sacrifice a prepared spell or spell slot to double any slashing or piercing weapon's threat range and increase the weapon's critical multiplier by 1 for a number of rounds equal to the level of the spell sacrificed. This bonus does not stack wih the Improved Critical feat or the keen special weapon property.
A 0th level spell can be used with this ability. In such a case, only one attack benefits from it. The attack must be made before the end of your current turn.

Bonus Feat:At 3rd level you may pick either a fighter bonus feat or any metamagic or spell enhancement feat for which you meet the prerequisites.


____________________________________
Notes: I'm particularly worried about giving them a wizard spellcasting _start_, which means that you can be a wizard without a wizard level... But then, you lose a caster level anyway.
Also, if all in all the class is too strong, I'd rather nerf the abilities than the spellcasting progression.
Medium BAB and 2/3 spellcasting with one good save seemed rather balanced to me.

Note as of 2013-08-19: With the new Arcane Strike this actually has some pretty nice early-level combat options. I hope this class doesn't step on the Duskblade's toes too much (since the Magus and the Duskblade were my reference points on this one).

Xerlith
2013-08-18, 02:42 PM
FEATZ!:

Close Range
Prerequisites: Spellcraft 5, Arcane Caster Level 3rd
Your understanding of ray spells enables you to gather and hold their essence in your palm
Benefit: You can deliver ray spells that feature a ranged touch attack as melee touch spells.
You treat those touch attacks as melee touch attacks for all purposes, including feats and class abilities.
You can use a ranged touch attack spell that targets more than one creature (such as scorching ray), but can make only one melee touch attack to deliver one of these ranged touch effects; additional ranged touch attacks from that spell are wasted and have no effect.

Note:
AW YISS, you can now channel Ray of Frost through your weapon!

Lesser Bladesong
You studied - either by yourself or from the revered Bladesingers - the art of graceful swordplay and learned to merge it with your spellcasting
Prerequisites: Perform (dance) 4, arcane caster level 1st, BAB +2, elf or half-elf
Benefit: While wielding a sword, rapier or any other melee weapon of elven origin in one hand and casting a spell, while casting defensively you gain a +2 bonus to your Concentration checks and a +4 dodge bonus to your AC until the beginning of your next turn.
Special: This feat counts as both Combat Casting and Dodge for the purposes of prerequisites.

Arcane Strike (Redone)
You can empower your weapons with the essence of pure magic.
Prerequisites: Ability to cast arcane spells, BAB +1
Benefit: This feat grants you access to two options:
- As a swift action, you can imbue your weapons with a fraction of your power. For 1 round, your weapons deal +1 damage and are treated as magic for the purpose of overcoming damage reduction. For every five caster levels you possess, this bonus increases by +1, to a maximum of +5 at 20th level.

- As a free action (That does not provoke attacks of opportunity) you may sacrifice one of your spells for the day (of 1st level or higher) to gain a bonus on all your attack rolls for 1 round equal to the level of the spell sacrificed, as well as extra damage equal to 1d4 points x the level of the spell sacrificed.
The bonus you add to your attack rolls from this feat cannot be greater than your base attack bonus.

eftexar
2013-08-18, 04:00 PM
These are nice (and I wouldn't worry about them being too strong). The ToB one is definitely a boost since playing a Duskblade, for example, at early levels is brutal.

I do, however, feel as if the non ToB version could use a boost so that it at least matches the ToB one in capability a little better. How about 6 skill points or another higher save? That and an extra ability of some sort at 3rd level?

Xerlith
2013-08-18, 04:35 PM
Well, having a natural Int of 20 (can be done at 1st level) grants you 9 skill points/level. Times four at 1st level.
That means 54 skill points total at 3rd level. A bit over the top for me, but I may be wrong.

I'm thinking about giving the non-ToB class some minor in-combat utility, either by making a brand new skill or just enhancing one of the already existing.

Changing the BAB to high would probably be a bit too much (prerequisites for PrCs and such). High Fort I think is doable.
EDIT: Non-ToB variant gained a critical multiplier increase by 1 in addition to the normal Arcane Edge effect. Also, high Fort.

Network
2013-08-19, 11:30 PM
EDIT: Non-ToB variant gained a critical multiplier increase by 1 in addition to the normal Arcane Edge effect. Also, high Fort.
You edited the wrong column, namely the BAB instead of the Fort saves. Though I agree with eftexar that the Martial Arcanist should receive full BAB and a 2nd-level bonus feat, if only to make it on par with the Sublime Arcanist.

I don't see what is the problem with early entry in PrCs. Which ones are you worried about? Eldritch Knight or Jade Phoenix Mage aren't big deals, really, and the former isn't easier to enter via Martial/Sublime Arcanist. I'm not sure for the latter.

Xerlith
2013-08-20, 02:21 AM
I was thinking of something along the lines of Swiftblade/Abjurant Champion, of which the first would probably be doable at 4th level with the full-bab option. Then again, human paragon is a 3/4 bab 2/3 casting class and is okay, so maybe I'm worrying too much.


You edited the wrong column, namely the BAB instead of the Fort saves. Though I agree with eftexar that the Martial Arcanist should receive full BAB and a 2nd-level bonus feat, if only to make it on par with the Sublime Arcanist.


That's what I get for editing half-asleep. Fixed.

A bonus feat at 2nd? Tempting, but I'm trying to keep the power level on par with the racial paragon classes. I'm reluctant even as for the full BAB progression.

Also, I don't really want the two classes to be perfectly equal. ToB rather heavily raises the power level of melee at every table and is banned disturbingly often. So if I want anyone to actually be allowed this class, I'd like not to make it a 3-level must-have optimization monster.
I want the Duskblade to still be able to compete for the place in the builds.
Then again, BAB is cheap... I am rather confused now.

Xerlith
2013-09-27, 06:19 AM
I thought I'd bump for some more input.

Razanir
2013-09-27, 07:43 AM
One thing I would changeĖ Bump the ToB version up to a d8. d6 seems REALLY low for a gish.


Well, having a natural Int of 20 (can be done at 1st level) grants you 9 skill points/level. Times four at 1st level.
That means 54 skill points total at 3rd level. A bit over the top for me, but I may be wrong.

Yeah, you're wrong. Think of it this way: If you max out skills, then you have 9 skills at +6, which isn't really insane. Especially compared to a Rogue 3 with 20 Int would have 78 skills points (13 at +6)