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cupkeyk
2007-02-11, 09:14 PM
I just got my Complete Scoundrel and I play Rogues a lot.

I think it's pretty bland. I can use skill tricks once per encounter and buying them more than once will not allow me to use them more than once an encounter. Although this seems realistic for tricks that are contested rolls because the opponent is expecting you to do it again and may be wary, most of the movement tricks seem to me like they should have unlimited uses.

The Prestige classes are, again, Meh... although the Cloaked Dancer seems like a good dip for a Rogue/ Dervish.

Spellwarp sniper seems like a good full caster rog/wiz gish and is easy enough to qualify for. But then Unseen Seer is still better!

Master of Masks is an okay single level dip.

Combat Trapsmith is awesome for a Kobold. LOLz

I guess the best thing about Complete Scoundrel, at least for me is the applications I can use it for a fighter. A fighter with his vast array of bonus feats can easily take his feats at the multiples of three as Luck feats. Having that extra edge will win the day or at least make him pretty annoying as an opponent and still be effective as a tank or sniper. Fortune's friend is so easy to qualify for as a Fighter.

I would have hoped for more class feature substitution levels. But there aren't any!!!!

What do you think?

Fax Celestis
2007-02-11, 09:19 PM
I think it's an excellent book for DMs, seeing the terrific potential for villains with these powers.

Seffbasilisk
2007-02-11, 09:20 PM
I like some of the skill tricks. Mosquito's bite can be insanely good for a rogue with a poisoned dagger and maxed out SoH and bluff. 'Oh no! The king has stumbled! He's been stabbed! Get the clerics!'

crazedloon
2007-02-11, 10:26 PM
I like it but it isnít too great. Compared with complete warrior or any other complete it falls short of expectations. The prestige classes arenít all that great for PCs however they would be interesting as an npc for a dm. There are 3 classes I like however the cloaked dancer is pretty nice looking the master of masks looks fun for any character to dip into and the grey guard is awesome if you ask me. The skill tricks are fun especially when you combine them the right way (I walk faster on walls with my ninja then I do on the ground). A good buy if you can get it cheaper then full price or are splitting with a group however it can easily be lived without.

Everyman
2007-02-11, 10:32 PM
I like it, as it gives me (a natural scoundrel player) more material to work with. I wish there were more depth the the PrCs (now that I've had a chance to work and play with them), but overall it isn't the worst book I've bought.

As of now, it ranks about a 7.5/10 (8.5 if you like your rogues/bards a LOT).

Ramza00
2007-02-11, 10:56 PM
I am still reading it slowly. I haven't had much time to look at it honestly, not like complete mage a few months ago. So far what I seen honestly disappoints.

The prestige classes mostly fall on there faces though there are a few exceptions.

I like the idea of skill tricks, and some of them are good. But for being the main cool thing in the book I wish there were more.

There are some good multiclass feats, and there are some bad ones. Depend on how you read the Spellthief it is a bad one. The fighter ones are disappointments. Ranger/Scout and Rogue/Swashbuckler are great.

So far its a decent book and worth getting, far better than other limited splat books(something in the line of Dragon Magic) but probably the weakest "complete" yet.

Viscount Einstrauss
2007-02-11, 10:57 PM
I'm enjoying it, but I unfortunately got it at the same time I got Tome of Battle, the single best supplement I've ever seen. The problem is that while the prestige classes all do neat things, there's never any reasoning for using them. And they take up the biggest chunk of the book.

The items are probably my favorite part, but there just aren't that many. The skill tricks get a close second, being that I prefer skill monkeys. The adventuring portions and everything give some good adventure ideas for a DM, and is bizarrely lengthy.

So it's been completely overshadowed by the ToB, which has been praised as the savior of the melee fighter by my group, and even HoB, which has helped out my players immensly in army building and squad tactics (war happens with alarming frequency in my campaign and everyone has their own small army). But it's still a decent book for a rogue lover.

Ramza00
2007-02-11, 11:01 PM
Oh yeah there are barely any items, and no weapon enchantments. When I read the items I felt gipped. Sure there are a few good items but for a "scoundrel book" where ingenious items is part of the character I felt like I was cheated.

Indon
2007-02-11, 11:07 PM
I have a Scout/Ranger/Rogue (yes, he has three classes. Got a problem with that?) and I'm going to be looking into the book constantly next time I gain a level.

Halcyon_Dax
2007-02-11, 11:47 PM
I borrowed it from a friend and read it all the way through. Alot of you guy's complaints are totally valid but, as a DM, I really enjoy the book. Master of Masks archvillain is totally creepy. Skilltricks are alot of fun too. All in all, not an awful purchase, but certainly not ToB either.

Bosh
2007-02-12, 12:59 AM
I love the PrC that lets you sudden strike people who're shaken. One of my favorite skills is intimidate and now it can finally be useful in combat :)

Mix in the armored sneaker class in heroes of battle and the intimidating strike feat and you've got a very fun character :)

Thomas
2007-02-12, 01:04 AM
I love the PrC that lets you sudden strike people who're shaken. One of my favorite skills is intimidate and now it can finally be useful in combat :)

Not to mention the idea is very cool.

A Jack the Ripper PrC.

Galathir
2007-02-12, 01:06 AM
I enjoyed reading through it, but there isn't a whole lot of stuff I would actually use. I took a few of the skill tricks for my Beguiler, and a few of the PrC's would be nice if it wasn't for the loss of caster levels. Overall I don't regret purchasing it, but it certainly isn't my favorite splat book.

Zeb The Troll
2007-02-12, 01:20 AM
I have to agree with the basic sentiment I've seen so far. This book is the biggest piece of crap I've seen from the spooky wizards for d20. Not only is there little of use in the book, but I think that the idea of adding yet more game mechanics (with skill tricks and luck feats) is just stupid. Great, another mechanic to keep track of. But then, with the history of M:tG and them adding new rules to that game every six months or so, I can't say I'm too surprised. Our group has recently pitched out everything that's not SRD, largely because there's nothing worth $20+ to buy, let alone haul around.

RoboticSheeple
2007-02-12, 01:40 AM
I think there is no cohesive basic sentiment of the book here. Everyone says they agree with that idea but then describe opposite things and values.

Personally, it's a DnD book, there are too many of those already. I couldn't care less about it.

jt_caban
2007-02-26, 08:03 AM
As a rogue player I was disappointed. I was hoping it would give me a few more tricky items, skills and prestige classes. It seemed to be a more cross-section book in order to provide for the bards and fighters of the world. Blah.

Pocket lint
2007-02-26, 08:53 AM
There were a few things of interest to us skill-monkeys, but not many. I liked the Daring Outlaw feat - I'm currently playing a Rg 4/Sw 4/Dervish x build that will rack up some truly unreal amounts of damage later on. Yes, 4d6 SA damage isn't all that much, but when you combine it with the sheer number of attacks I get later on, it starts adding up really quickly.

The skill tricks were fun as well. Given that the skills are pretty one-sided as written in the PHB, it's good to get something more useful out of having high ranks.

Other than that, not much of interest. The prestige classes were a bit meh compared to other books, and the luck feats ... I just don't see who is the target for those, since rogues don't get enough feats to spend them on such things.

GolemsVoice
2007-02-26, 09:58 AM
I second most of the coments on Complete Scoundrel. It is a nice book to have, and fun to imagine all the extreme characters that you could do, but it is not ground breaking. I read about their idea of coundrels, and found out that my character already was a scoundrel.
Anyway, the luck feats are fun to use, though I don't see much reason to pick most of them. The grey guard and cloaked dancers are usefull prestige classes as well, and there are also some interesting ideas for scoundrelish (sp?) life.

The Vorpal Tribble
2007-02-26, 10:15 AM
So far its a decent book and worth getting, far better than other limited splat books(something in the line of Dragon Magic) but probably the weakest "complete" yet.
Have you ever read Complete Psionic? If Complete Scoundrel is worse than that then I am very, very frightened.

Renegade Paladin
2007-02-26, 10:21 AM
It definitely is not worse that Complete Psionic. Not even close.

Person_Man
2007-02-26, 10:22 AM
We had a thread about it here (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=32172&highlight=scoundrel) back when it came out.

Because of my love of Skill Monkeys, I made the mistake of pre-ordering it, so I have it and have read through all of it. My take:

1) Fluff: Garbage. Relatively little that I would use as a DM or PC.

2) Prestige Classes: the Avenging Executioner and Spellwarp Sniper are good. I'd consider Master of Masks for a BBEG. The rest are pretty bad, and I almost never see anyone using Comp Scoundrel PrCs on builds that we post on the boards.

3) Feats: There are about 4 which will be used a lot - Daring Outlaw, Improved Skirmish, Swift Ambusher, and Swift Hunter. The rest are pretty useless. Luck feats are horrible. Wasting a feat to reroll something minor once per day? That's worse then Weapon Focus. There are a few that would be good if they didn't require having at least X Luck feats as a prereq. They're almost as bad as Ambush feats, which make you give up Sneak Attack damage in exchange for dealing modest penalties. Merciful Strike, for example, is just a weaker version of the Subduing Strike feat from Book of Exhalted Deeds. Do the writers even read the other suppliments?

4) Spells: Armor Lock is a nifty 1st level spell that slows a foe down and denies them their Dex bonus. The rest are meh.

5) Skill Tricks: These nifty and situationally useful, but add ANOTHER game mechanic that is needlessly complex. Rather then giving you a Trick that costs 2 Skill points and allows you to Tumble through an enemy's square to make him flat footed for your next attack during that round, they should have just made it a DC 30 Tumble check. Or they could have worked them all into one or two prestige classes, giving Skill Monkeys something unique to work with.

So on balance, I thought it was a horrible book. A huge disappointment, especially since my last D&D purchase was the much beloved PHBII.

Overlard
2007-02-26, 10:25 AM
I guess I'm in the minority here. I really enjoyed the book. I love the skill tricks, although I'm not a big fan of the luck feats. I think of all the recent books that have been all about power, this one is just plain ol' fun in comparison.

Renegade Paladin
2007-02-26, 10:30 AM
I don't get all the moaning about skill tricks being too complex. Is it really that hard to wrap your brain around the concept, or what?

Person_Man
2007-02-26, 10:40 AM
I don't get all the moaning about skill tricks being too complex. Is it really that hard to wrap your brain around the concept, or what?

It's not that they're too complex. It's just another game mechanic. Another book you have to have physically at the table in order for you to use it. Another rule you have to explain to your players, who are still having a hard time understanding Grapple. If you're playing with all veterans, then there's little problem. But if you play with a mixed group, as I do, adding more rule complexity to a game that already has hundreds of pages of core rules doesn't help.

cupkeyk
2007-02-26, 10:45 AM
OR--- it's too complex for a once per encounter ability. LOLz. Honestly, I wanna slap that idea out of the book.

Telonius
2007-02-26, 10:58 AM
Currently playing a Master of Masks in an Eberron campaign: Shifter Rogue6/Wizard1/Master7. We have a very odd group design: a ToB warrior type, a Warforged Fighter/Barbarian, a Kalashtar Soulknife/Soulbow, a Druid/Wizard/Mystic Theurge, and yours truly. As you might have noticed, there is a distinct lack of full arcane and full divine caster. The combination of Assassin, Archmage, and High Priest masks have allowed me to serve as both replacement Wizard (bumps to caster level have helped greatly) and stop-gap Cleric, while keeping up on the sneak attack damage with Assassin.

That particular prestige class fits right in with my character's fluff. I designed him as a charlatan wizard, mainly a rogue; with a penchant for deception and impersonation. The DM allowed me to retrofit the character when the book came out, just because it fit in so perfectly with his personality. This has probably been one of the most enjoyable characters I've ever played, and the mechanics of this PrC have made it even better.

The skill tricks are kind of so-so. The "stand up from prone" ones are great. A clever Rogue/Wizard could get into the Magical Appraisal business in a pawn shop with the "identify a magic item" trick. It's saved my group several hundred gp and a whole bunch of time in Identification costs already.

Macrovore
2007-02-26, 11:03 AM
I guess I'm in the minority here. I really enjoyed the book. I love the skill tricks, although I'm not a big fan of the luck feats. I think of all the recent books that have been all about power, this one is just plain ol' fun in comparison.

ditto. IMO, complete scoundrel wasn't cool because of the mechanics (they were ok. not great, but okay), but because of the swashbuckly stuff. then again, i do play eberron, so i do tend to like swashbuckly stuff.

avenging executioner is FREAKIN AWESOME, though.

Fax Celestis
2007-02-26, 11:07 AM
ditto. IMO, complete scoundrel wasn't cool because of the mechanics (they were ok. not great, but okay), but because of the swashbuckly stuff. then again, i do play eberron, so i do tend to like swashbuckly stuff.

avenging executioner is FREAKIN AWESOME, though.

I made this distinction in another thread: Where most of the books are about being awesome, the Complete Scoundrel is about LOOKING awesome.

Hzurr
2007-02-26, 12:23 PM
I really liked some of the sneak attack feats. Throat Punch? I've been waiting for that one for a long time (stupid guards who shout out warnings...). The disemboweling strike and head shot are also really fun.

The skill tricks are, as everyone else has said, a lot of fun, and I'm looking forward to using them.

The book is also useful for the characters who like to do things with alchemy and poison. Not as good as complete adventurer was, but not too bad.

I do wish it had more magic item stuff (although the Rod of Ropes is pretty spiffy).

pestilenceawaits
2007-02-26, 01:43 PM
I actually liked the book a fair amount. I liked the feats and tricks. some of the prestige classes were OK not all of them were. over all it ranked 6 out of 10 from me.

SpiderBrigade
2007-02-26, 02:38 PM
Seconded on Throat Punch being almost worth the whole damn book.

I remember doing some sneaky-type adventures and spending many many hours with the DM trying to figure out a way to silence a guard other than sneak-attack-killing him in the surprise round - or using the iffy 3.0 Song and Silence garrotte rules, which I seem to remember required a grapple check - not something a stealthy rogue wants vs. burly guards.

And, not really getting why there's so much hate for the book. The skill tricks are cool, although I do agree the 1/encounter restriction kind of gimps them. The luck feats aren't any more complex than all those sorceror Bloodline/Heritage feats, and people seem to love those.

Building your ultimate Batman wizard? Get him the Rod of Ropes!

And, yes, agree with Fax: it's about looking awesome.

Edit: although, actually. Looking at throat punch, I don't think it WOULD save you from guards sounding the alarm, as yelling doesn't require a skill check, does it?

AoiRorentsu
2007-02-26, 03:00 PM
though I have to say, using the trick that let's you feint multiple opponents at once + rogue + dervish + TWF= yay!

I think that's kind of the point of skill tricks - they provide little expansions on skills you already have do let you do neat tricks.

As for the rest, I agree with what I think is the general sentiment that the book is for DMs more than players. Though there's a lot in there for players, this books is about the flavor - the look, the feel, the taste of the campaign. The book is about enabling everyone to do tricky things, and about creating a specific kind of approach to playing. Is it complete? Meh, maybe not. But there's a lot there that will greatly enhance the flavor of your campaign, and for that reason is worth the cost (well, at least as much as most of the other books) for anyone but the most hack-n-slash of players - and even then CS still has a lot there.

Raum
2007-02-26, 07:26 PM
I was extremely disappointed with the book. Only a couple of the PrCs are worth the paper they're printed on, few of the feats are worth the cost, and not one of the skill tricks should cost two skill points. The spells are blah and none of the fluff text is really new, it's just rehashed with no new ideas.

Skill tricks are probably the worst part of the book. Conceal Spellcasting, for example, is outrageously overpowered. For two skill points you get the social / political abilities that used to cost two feats and two spell levels?! And once you spend the two points you can never be counterspelled. Sigh, it was already hard enough to interrupt spellcasting. And there are others such as Sudden Draw, it's worded poorly. Others such as Acrobatic Backstab, Back on your Feet, Corner Perch, Dismount Attack, etc should simply be a skill check with an appropriate DC. In most games they probably already were.

Basically, I wish I'd waited instead of pre-ordering.

SpiderBrigade
2007-02-26, 08:44 PM
Err...you can "never be counterspelled" only once per encounter, if I'm not mistaken. It's not that broken.

Noneoyabizzness
2007-02-26, 09:25 PM
it's not bad.

tricks offer a little variety to the standard repetoire, and offers something aside for maxing every expected skill, and yeah the trickster classes also add something into the mix for those who want to be stylish(especially uncanny trickster in a chameleon build, what do you offer the class that does everything, more skill tricks/skill points)

Shiny, Bearer of the Pokystick
2007-02-26, 10:09 PM
Condensed version of my opinion; sat down in a barnes and noble (where my friend works, obviating the 'this-is-not-a-library' bookstore rule) and read the whole thing.

I was underwhelmed by the majority of the flavor, similar to my reaction to 'complete psionic'; many of the gameplay elements are sub-optimal for players, which means truly knowledgeable or focused players are unlikely to use them.

Much of the material is, however, as has been mentioned, suitable for DMs and villains, even the luck feats have their uses.

Nonetheless- while I make more than frequent use of the early Complete series books, Warrior, Adventurer, Arcane, even Divine and Psionic....I have not purchased and have no plans to purchase these later entries, which seem too thin for full-price texts and too unfocused to my mind.

Brickwall
2007-02-26, 10:14 PM
I think the skill trick system is just a teensy bit underpowered. Not sure how to fix it. The feats kick ASS, though. The PrCs...lackluster some of them, but they rely on aforementioned underpowered system. Everything else, sweet.

We here at B-play give this book an 8, out of 10.

Raum
2007-02-26, 10:39 PM
Err...you can "never be counterspelled" only once per encounter, if I'm not mistaken. It's not that broken.No? Once per minute / encounter you can cast a Silenced Stilled spell even if you don't know the feats...and it doesn't cost any extra spell levels. Definitely more powerful in RP heavy games than in combat oriented games, but it's easily worth the 12 skill points a wizard would have to spend on it. It's not like the fighter trying to interrupt or the wizard attempting to counterspell are likely to have many ranks in Spot after all. And if the wizard is wiling to continue investing in Sleight of Hand he'll have at least a 50% success rate against the classes without Spot as a class skill.

The skill tricks can generally be relegated into one of two categories, those allowing you to bypass or break previously existing rules, and those which should be a simple skill check.

Overlard
2007-02-27, 05:59 AM
No? Once per minute / encounter you can cast a Silenced Stilled spell even if you don't know the feats...and it doesn't cost any extra spell levels. Definitely more powerful in RP heavy games than in combat oriented games, but it's easily worth the 12 skill points a wizard would have to spend on it. It's not like the fighter trying to interrupt or the wizard attempting to counterspell are likely to have many ranks in Spot after all. And if the wizard is wiling to continue investing in Sleight of Hand he'll have at least a 50% success rate against the classes without Spot as a class skill.

It's silenced and stilled? I must have missed that. I thought that was the trick that let you get one spell by the person trying to counterspell you, not allow you to cast while tied up and under the effect of a silence spell. :smallconfused:


The skill tricks can generally be relegated into one of two categories, those allowing you to bypass or break previously existing rules, and those which should be a simple skill check.
Wait, don't most non-core feats let you do bypass or break previously existing rules? They can let you multiclass paladin & monk with several other classes and still let you advance as a paladin/monk, they let you move and cast a spell as a standard action, change the energy types of spells and so on! Bypassing and breaking previously existing rules are what new books do.

They're fun tricks, not uberly powerful like some people need the stuff in the new books to be, and provide fun stuff to do in combat. I like 'em.

ExHunterEmerald
2007-02-27, 07:07 AM
Two words.
Crossbow. Bayonettes.

Singlehandedly worth the asking price.

Rigeld2
2007-02-27, 07:36 AM
Wait, don't most non-core feats let you do bypass or break previously existing rules? They can let you multiclass paladin & monk with several other classes and still let you advance as a paladin/monk, they let you move and cast a spell as a standard action, change the energy types of spells and so on! Bypassing and breaking previously existing rules are what new books do.
Since when is spending 2 skill points anywhere comparable to spending two feats?

Really, I think skill tricks were thier way of adding more feats to all classes without actually.... adding more feats to all classes.

cupkeyk
2007-02-27, 07:56 AM
They still have verbal and somatic components. It prevents an attack of opportunity, replacing a sleight of hand check for a concentration check and makes spellcraft checks to identify your spell impossible, otherwise nobody notices that you are casting a spell. I thought he was referring to Disguise Spell, not silence spell and still spell. The spell still has the same components.

It's a weaker version of Disguise Spell.

Overlard
2007-02-27, 07:57 AM
Since when is spending 2 skill points anywhere comparable to spending two feats?

Really, I think skill tricks were thier way of adding more feats to all classes without actually.... adding more feats to all classes.
Well they're basically feats-lite.

Maybe more people would be agreeable to them if you took a feat and got access to 4 skill tricks out of a list or something. But seeing as most classes are feat-starved anyway, I'm not convinced they would be taken up. 2 skill points is still a lot for a lot of classes.

Raum
2007-02-27, 08:41 AM
It's silenced and stilled? I must have missed that. I thought that was the trick that let you get one spell by the person trying to counterspell you, not allow you to cast while tied up and under the effect of a silence spell. :smallconfused:You seem to have missed my earlier comments. To wit, Conceal Spellcasting gives you the social and political effects of both Silence and Still, not the combat effects. Basically, you can cast a spell in situations where someone noticing your spell casting would have negative consequences.


Wait, don't most non-core feats let you do bypass or break previously existing rules? They can let you multiclass paladin & monk with several other classes and still let you advance as a paladin/monk, they let you move and cast a spell as a standard action, change the energy types of spells and so on! Bypassing and breaking previously existing rules are what new books do.At minimum, you get two to three times as many skill points as feats...and that's assuming a low enough intelligence to result in the minimum one skill point per level, most will have far more. So why are two skill points now nearly (or more in some cases) as powerful as feats?


They're fun tricks, not uberly powerful like some people need the stuff in the new books to be, and provide fun stuff to do in combat. I like 'em.Please. Ad hominem attacks are unnecessary.

Overlard
2007-02-27, 09:56 AM
You seem to have missed my earlier comments. To wit, Conceal Spellcasting gives you the social and political effects of both Silence and Still, not the combat effects. Basically, you can cast a spell in situations where someone noticing your spell casting would have negative consequences.
I see what you mean now. Am I confusing it with another trick though, as I'm thinking it lets you disguise one spell as another? So they might not know what you're casting, but they'll know you are casting.


At minimum, you get two to three times as many skill points as feats...and that's assuming a low enough intelligence to result in the minimum one skill point per level, most will have far more. So why are two skill points now nearly (or more in some cases) as powerful as feats?
Depends on the feat. And they're still only once per encounter/minute. I just don't think they're powerful enough to get choked up over.


Please. Ad hominem attacks are unnecessary.
Actually I was referring to two players in my group, not you or anyone here. One is only concerned about how to squeeze more D6s damage per attack from the splatbooks and called the tricks "unusably weak", while the other calls the tricks a "waste of good skill points that could go into UMD". Flavour & fun come a distant third to damage and domination for those two. :smallmad:

Raum
2007-02-27, 10:59 AM
Those are two different tricks, one utilizes bluff and the other sleight of hand.