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View Full Version : D&D 3.x Class a Monk alternative not posted on a monkday [PEACH]



ben-zayb
2015-03-21, 06:18 AM
While I'm perfectly fine with playing the various awesome monk fixes in the playground, I needed to test certain concept mechanics that I've in mind. It just so happened that one of those mechanics fits well with the fluff of concentrating and Ki, which is tied to the Ninja and Monk class, so I might as well make one such class that I'd potentially enjoy. Thus, this monk alternative was born!


Credits
1. I looked up at the various monk and ninja fixes, remakes, and alternatives, some of which have better rewordings of abilities and mechanics that fit better with the mechanics that I had in mind. Special credit goes to Jiriku and UserShadow7989, whose brews I stole/borrowed/tweaked to add to my own brew.

Goals
1. Of course, the first goal is always to make a monk finally playable. And more importantly, this monk needs to be able to contribute to things other than killing mooks occasionally.
2. Turn the monk SAD, and by SAD I meant a monk may also choose to dump Dex in favor of Int.
3. Turn the monk into a legit skillmonkey, not too far from the bard or factotum.
4. Make the monk capable of doing all those fancy Wuxia tricks and fighting flavor without compromising the mechanical balance and the fluff.
5. Make the Ki mechanic fit nicely with the monk's abilities and the monk's fluff.

WIP: Allow the monk to get a distinct and flavorful "tanking" style, which gives her better battlefield control options and a unique mobility-based AoO/threat abilities to defend the party without the need to be a Colossal creature with a spiked chain. It may use thrown-weapon + ranged <manuever> mechanics.







the contemplative
Monk

Hit Die: d8

Class Skills
The monk's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Autohypnosis (Wis), Balance (Dex), Climb (Str), Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Decipher Script (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Escape Artist (Dex), Forgery (Int), Heal (Wis), Hide (Dex), Jump (Str), Knowledge (all skills, taken individually) (Int), Listen (Wis), Martial Lore (Int), Move Silently (Dex), Perform (Cha), Profession (Wis), Search (Int), Sense Motive (Wis), Sleight of Hand (Dex), Speak Language (None), Spot (Wis), Swim (Str), and Tumble (Dex).
Skill Points at 1st level: (8 + Int modifier) x 4.
Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 8 + Int modifier.


Level
Base Attack
Fort
Ref
Will
Special
Flurry (full-attack)
Flurry (single)
Unarmed Strike
No True Path


1st
+0
+2
+2
+2
Bonus Feat, Ki, War Within,
Flurry of Blows, Unarmed Strike
-2/-2
-2/-2
1d6
+0 ft.


2nd
+1
+3
+3
+3
Bonus Feat, Resilient Spirit
-1/-1
-1/-1
1d6
+0 ft.


3rd
+2
+3
+3
+3
No True Path
+0/+0
+0/+0
1d6
+10 ft.


4th
+3
+4
+4
+4
Diamond Body
+1/+1
+1/+1
1d8
+10 ft.


5th
+3
+4
+4
+4
Purity of Spirit
+2/+2
+2/+2
1d8
+10 ft.


6th
+4
+5
+5
+5
Bonus Feat, Wholeness of Body
+3/+3
+3/+3
1d8
+20 ft.


7th
+5
+5
+5
+5
Epiphany
+4/+4
+4/+4
1d8
+20 ft.


8th
+6/+1
+6
+6
+6
Thousand Steps
+5/+5/+5/+0
+5/+5/+5
2d6
+20 ft.


9th
+6/+1
+6
+6
+6
Pondered Senses
+6/+6/+6/+1
+6/+6/+6
2d6
+30 ft.


10th
+7/+2
+7
+7
+7
Bonus Feat, Empty Body
+7/+7/+7/+2
+7/+7/+7
2d6
+30 ft.


11th
+8/+3
+7
+7
+7
Diamond Spirit
+8/+8/+8/+3
+8/+8/+8
2d6
+30 ft.


12th
+9/+4
+8
+8
+8
Thousand Hands
+9/+9/+9/+4
+9/+9/+9
3d6
+40 ft.


13th
+9/+4
+8
+8
+8
Serene Grace
+9/+9/+9/+4
+9/+9/+9
3d6
+40 ft.


14th
+10/+5
+9
+9
+9
Bonus Feat, Pondered Words
+10/+10/+10/+5
+10/+10/+10
3d6
+40 ft.


15th
+11/+6/+1
+9
+9
+9
Singularity
+11/+11/+11/+11/+6/+1
+11/+11/+11/+11
3d6
+50 ft.


16th
+12/+7/+2
+10
+10
+10
Thousand Illuminations
+12/+12/+12/+12/+7/+2
+12/+12/+12/+12
4d6
+50 ft.


17th
+12/+7/+2
+10
+10
+10
Empty Spirit
+12/+12/+12/+12/+7/+2
+12/+12/+12/+12
4d6
+50 ft.


18th
+13/+8/+3
+11
+11
+11
Bonus Feat, Timeless Body
+13/+13/+13/+13/+8/+3
+13/+13/+13/+13
4d6
+60 ft.


19th
+14/+9/+4
+11
+11
+11
Pondered Actions
+14/+14/+14/+14/+9/+4
+14/+14/+14/+14
4d6
+60 ft.


20th
+15/+10/+5
+12
+12
+12
Transcendence
+15/+15/+15/+15/+10/+5
+15/+15/+15/+15
6d6
+60 ft.



Class Features
All of the following are class features of the monk.


Note: All unspecified references to "level" refers to effective monk level, which is normally the actual number of levels taken in the monk class. A monk's "Epiphany" can momentarily change this value.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency
Monks are proficient with all simple weapons plus the handaxe, kama, kukri, nunchaku, sai, shortsword, shuriken, siangham and spiked chain. Monks are not proficient with any armor or shields. When wearing armor or using a shield, a monk loses the benefit of the following class features: bonus feat, ki, battle within, flurry of blows, unarmed strike, resilient spirit, no true path, purity of spirit, thousand steps, thousand palms, thousand illuminations, and empty spirit.


Note: Any references to "monk weapons" refer to weapons that monks are naturally proficient with (i.e. those in this proficiency section)

I gave the monk simple weapon proficiency because why not? It's the original "Wuxia" or weaboo archetype (take your pick) class right? Another difference is that the monk can now use her abilities even with a medium or heavy load, which is done because what kind of PC class should get badly maimed by a 1st level, hard-to-be-immuned, no-save, ranged touch attack spell? Asnwer: the fighternone


Ki (Ex)
Meditating with a singular focus in her thoughts, a monk harmonizes the body, the mind, and the spirit to better succeed at her goal.

By concentrating (a mental standard action each round, as normal) for a minute, a monk gain a single Ki. A monk's Ki pool can have a maximum amount of Ki equal to her Wisdom modifier + half her level. As long as she has at least one Ki, the base attack bonus from monk levels count as good (+1 per level, or "Full BAB") and her greater flurry instead grants an extra attack at 6th level and every 5 levels thereafter.

Ki can be expended (not an action) to provide a minute's worth of successful concentration. This can be done even if her physical or mental capabilities are hampered, such as when paralyzed, unconscious, under the Control Body power, or under a mind-affecting effect. However, this can't be used for momentary Concentration checks, such as for casting defensively or for initiating certain Diamond Mind (ToB) maneuvers.


This is basically my fluff revision of Ki, to make it more extraordinary instead of supernatural. It's really not that hard to grasp the concept of focusing your whole self to becomes extraordinarily competent in doing a task. Some people even call that Diamond Mind, for what that's worth. For the purposes of maintaining at least 1 Ki, the normal +2 to a save doesn't really sound sexy for a class with perfect saves, so the demand for full-BAB is instead folded it as a perk.

Ki now also gives other uses aside from being a monk resource, such as concentrating on a power or a bardic music. Normal rules still apply, so you can't still cast a spell while concentrating (albeit freely and instantaneously) on another spell.


War Within (Ex)
Before plunging herself to the battles of the outside world, a monk must first focus on her inner world and overcome her worst enemy--herself. By being triumphant against her own imperfections, a monk comes out with the enlightenment of a warrior sage.

A Monk's Wisdom modifier, to a maximum of 5 + half her level, is added as a bonus to armor class, and may be substituted for Strength or Dexterity modifiers for the purpose of opposed rolls, attack rolls, damage rolls, and extra attacks of opportunity (if she has Combat Reflexes).

By concentrating for a minute, she becomes able to ignore up to one size difference per three levels, between her and everything/one else. This affects bonuses, penalties, and limitations, due to size.


Note: This counts as "AC Bonus", as well as the Insightful Strike and Zen Archery feats, for purposes of stacking effects, prerequisites, and ACFs.

The first part is meant to reduce MAD for STR and DEX, making her core combat stats aside from HP (attack, damage, AC, special attacks) rely on WIS. Now with a (likely) full BAB, and a good WIS, a monk will be able to attack without much worry about not hitting. The damage part will be dealt with by the next ability, which is the main TO attraction of the monk--it's scaling unarmed strike.

The second part allows her to do stuff like wield some inappropriately sized weapons as effortlessly as you wield weapons of your size, attack/defend/hide better than others who are as large as you, spot hidden creatures as easily as some creatures of a larger size, grapple creatures more than two sizes larger than you, squeeze into a tight space as though you are smaller, etc.


Flurry of Blows (Ex)
A monk eschews prejudged notions on the limits of her body, allowing for faster and more fluid attack patterns.

At 1st level, a monk may strike with a flurry of blows at the expense of accuracy as part of an attack of opportunity or an action that requires you to make at least one attack (such as a standard action attack, a full-attack, a charge, a Whirlwind Attack, a Spring Attack, a Fly-By Attack, or a Strike maneuver).

When doing so, she may make one extra attack at her highest base attack bonus, but this attack takes a -2 penalty, as does each other attack made that round. The "flurry" columns on the table above shows the modified base attack bonus (assuming medium base attack bonus progression) for Flurry of Blows (including Greater Flurry) with either a full-attack or a single attack. The penalty applies for 1 round, and is permanently lessened by 1 at 5th and 9th level. When using flurry of blows, a monk may attack only with unarmed strikes or with special monk weapons interchangeably as desired. When flurrying with a weapon, a monk applies her Strength bonus (not Str bonus × 1˝ or ×˝) to her damage rolls whether she wields a weapon in one or both hands.


Greater Flurry: When making a flurry of blows, she gains an additional attack at 8th level and every 7 levels thereafter.

By concentrating for a minute, a monk may flurry with any weapon, for 1 minute per level.


Almost the same as the 3.5 monk, with a few added weapons, and giving more "flurry" (up by 1 to 2) and less "blow".


Unarmed Strike (Ex)
A monk keep her spirit, mind, as well as her body, in peak condition, enabling her unarmed strikes to be more potent than others.

At 1st level, a monk gains Improved Unarmed Strike as a bonus feat. A monk’s unarmed strike counts as either manufactured or natural at any time, whichever is more beneficial to her. A monk’s attacks may be with either fist interchangeably or even from elbows, knees, and feet. She applies her full Strength bonus on damage rolls for all her unarmed strikes.

At 4th level, and every 4 levels thereafter, her unarmed strike damage die increases as though it went up a size category, as shown for medium creatures in the Unarmed Strike column in the table above (adjust accordingly for creatures of other sizes).

By concentrating for a minute, a monk's attacks with special monk weapons use her Unarmed Strike damage die instead of the weapon's, for 1 minute per level.


Wordings are partially cribbed from Jiriku's description, and now similarly works as manufactured/natural the way a Ghost Touch weapon works as incorporeal/unincorporeal. The damage progression, as Jiriku's monk, is readjusted to follow the same scaling as sized weapons.

Like other Monk fixes, giving the unarmed strike damage to monk weapons means those who want to throw shurikens will have fun doing it too. With Flurry of Blows, this enables the monk to deal significant damage with minimal penalty to attack (From 2 1d6-base die attacks at -2 penalty with good BAB by Level 1, up to 8 6d6-base die attacks at no penalty with good BAB by Level 20)


Bonus Feat
At 1st level, 2nd level, and every 4 levels thereafter, a monk gains a feat selected from the list below and its benefits, without needing to meet its prerequisites. Some feats may only be selected at later levels.


Minimum of 1st Level: Blind-Fight, Combat Expertise, Combat Focus, Combat Reflexes, Dodge, Endurance, Evasive Reflexes, Expeditious Dodge, Great Fortitude, Improved Disarm, Improved Grapple, Improved Initiative, Improved Trip, Iron Will, Ki Training Lightning Reflexes, Mind Over Body, Mobility, Open Minded, Point Blank Shot, Power Attack, Precise Shot, Quick Draw, Run, Stand Still, Stunning Fist, Superior Unarmed Strike, Toughness, Weapon Finesse
Minimum of 2nd Level: Deflect Arrows, Diehard, Far Shot, Improved Bull Rush, Improved Sunder, Rapid Shot, Shot on the Run, Snatch Arrows, Spring Attack
Minimum of 6th Level: Boundless Assault, Karmic Strike, Manyshot, Ranged Disarm, Ranged Pin, Ranged Sunder, Snap Kick, any [Combat Form] feat
Minimum of 10th Level: Defensive Sweep, Rapid Blitz, Robilar's Gambit, Overwhelming Assault, any [Style] or [Tactical] feat




This needs some tweaking, but there's just too many variants of the monk's "Bonus Feat" so I just dumped them all.


Resilient Spirit (Ex)
Whenever the efforts of her body and mind do not suffice, her spirit pushes them further beyond their limits.

At 2nd level, a monk chooses one type of save (fortitude, reflex, or will). Whenever she would be subjected to a partial effect (including halved damage) due to a successful save of that type, she negates the partial effect instead. At 9th level and then at 16th level, she chooses another type of save.

By concentrating for five minutes, a monk may make another saving throw to negate a non-instantaneous effect whose saving throw (must be from the same type she chose) she has already failed.


Note: This counts as either Evasion or Mettle for purposes of prerequisites and ACFs.

This basically gives the monk a choice of either Evasion or Mettle, and eventually getting both. I'm not a big fan of their improved versions, for opposite reasons, so the Improved Evasion is scrapped. It also features a reroll mechanic similar to, but better than, a rogue's Slippery Mind. Really, if anyone should reroll a will save, it should be the monk.


No True Path (Ex)
A monk learns that there is no single right path in her journey. Such enlightenment enables her body and mind open to the possibility of traversing any terrain more effectively.

At 3rd level, a monk gains a bonus to her speed equal to +10ft per three levels. Furthermore, she now automatically succeeds on any Balance, Climb, Jump, Swim, or Tumble checks with DC not greater than her rank on the particular skill times this ability's bonus (with penalties to her checks counting as an increase in DC). This also allows her to make epic checks with these skills, if she isn't already allowed to do so. A DC 180 Balance check allows her to balance on air.

Beginning 5th level, by concentrating for three minutes, she gains an extraordinary Freedom of Movement effect that lasts for 1 round per level.


Note: This counts as Fast Movement for purposes of prerequisites and ACFs.

This opens up plenty of mundane options, some of which are Epic, that are actually less than what magic can already accomplish, but are nonetheless not uncommon as wuxia tropes. Water walking, cloud walking, reliable high jumps, climbing difficult surfaces, 10ft steps, and even the classic "Slow Fall" effect (without wall hassles) should be accessible to monks at the level or earlier that their magic-equivalents get their "bypass physical terrain" effects.


Diamond Body (Ex or Su)
A monk perfects the basic combat potential of her body, enabling her to deflect blows and punch through obstructions as easily as those who wear enchanted armors and weapons.

At 4th level, a monk gains +1 enhancement bonus per four levels to her armor class as though her body is an armor, as well as to attack and damage rolls for the purpose of unarmed attacks and attacks using special monk weapons. Her unarmed attacks and attacks with special monk weapons now count as magical whenever beneficial to her. At 10th level, they count as aligned (with her alignment/s) and of a material of her choice for purposes of bypassing hardness, DR, and regeneration. At 16th level, they bypass any hardness, DR, and regeneration. This is an extraordinary effect.

By concentrating for four minutes, a monk treats her unarmed attacks and attacks with special monk weapons as having any number of weapon special abilities with a total cost no greater than the cost of this enhancement bonus on weapons. This supernatural effect lasts for 1 minute per level, doesn't stack with itself, and can't select abilities with a daily limit.


Note: This counts as Ki Strike for purposes of prerequisites and ACFs.

Example of use: A 12th level (+3 enhancement = 18000g) monk can imbue any combination of special abilities worth 18000g, such as having Transmuting + Ghost Touch (+2 and +1) or Magebane + Valorous + Spellblade + Changeling + Sudden Stunning (+1, +1, 6000gp, 2000gp, and 2000gp)

Yes. This is one of the monk's more diverse ability, giving her access to almost any weapon enhancement in the game. This is balanced by the limited amount of time of use, such that a 20th level monk with Wis +14 can only use this for up to 6 rounds and consuming all Ki. (a 40th level monk can use this for another two rounds, but we'll get to that later).


Purity of Spirit (Ex or Su)
By ignoring all worldly influences on herself, a monk also becomes able to separate herself from the afflictions within her.

At 5th level, a monk gains immunity to ability damage, charm effects, diseases, fatigue, fear, poison, and sickness. Starting 9th level, she can suppress the effects of compulsion, confusion, energy drain, exhaustion, nausea, non-(harmless) necromancy, and phantasm on her for 1 minute per level. Starting 13th level she can suppress the effects of ability drain, insanity, level drain, and non-(harmless) transmutation on her. This is an extraordinary effect.

By concentrating for four minutes, she becomes capable of channeling her spiritual energy on a target as a standard action touch attack, expelling all effects that she is capable of suppressing or immune to via Purity of Spirit. This supernatural effect lasts indefinitely until the expelling effect is discharged.


Note: This counts as Purity of Body and Still Mind for purposes of prerequisites and ACFs.

While immunity to diseases and poisons are good enough for the body, a +2 to Will saves is just terrible for a class feature. What I did was fold them on the same ability, add the prevention of fear, as well as a host of other physical/mental/spiritual afflictions on later levels. This basically extends the Monk's role as an anti-debuffer (usually filed as part of the "Healbot" package) that is limited by her Ki in combat, but enables the party to eschew their stock Restoration wands/scrolls OOC.



Wholeness of Body (Ex)
A monk learns to harness her excess vital energies, store them to the depths of her spirit, and use them when needed the most to quickly recuperate.

At 6th level, a monk can heal her own wounds. She can heal a number of hit points of damage per day equal to her level times her Wisdom modifier (minimum of +1), and she can spread this healing out among several uses. At 11th level, she may spread this healing on others, channeling her vitality by making a standard action touch attack. She may combine this with Purity of Spirit, using only a single standard action touch attack on the same target.

By concentrating for six minutes, she replenishes the daily limit of this ability.


Another beefed-up ability that enables the Monk to save up the party's WBL on Healing Belts and Wands of CLW. While healbot isn't really an efficient combat role, a monk will also be able to pop one or more (by expending ki) combat-heal in an encounter similar in magnitude to a Heal spell during emergencies.


Epiphany (Ex)
The monk can glean insight from her infinite potential, and achieve a moment of supreme enlightenment.

A monk may concentrate for any number of minutes up to half her actual monk levels. After doing so, for one round per 10 actual monk levels, her "level" is treated as though higher by an amount equal to this number of minutes. Epiphany only affects her current monk class features (bonus feats are temporary), base attack bonus (and iterative attacks), saves, skills (increase of synergy bonus, maximum rank, and skill points, are temporary), and hit points (average die, and counted as temporary). The base attack bonus and save progression for level 21+ monks follow the Epic Level Handbook rules.

She can't use this ability to meet prerequisites or for feat/skill swapping (such as from retraining, Psychic Reformation, or Embrace the Dark Chaos)


This is the monk's most unique ability, and her most versatile. While the combat applications are all great (better stats and variable monk feats on demand), the highlight of this ability is to cement the monk as a viable skillmonkey. With a minute of concentration, you get temporary 8+Int skill points to put wherever it's needed. You don't even need to rely much on Int, since you just need to concentrate more to gain more skill points.

Unlike the factotum and the bard, her "bonus" is dependent on her class-skill and her resource of either ki or time, such that reactive or use-heavy skill checks will suffer game delays if used (similar to how taking 20 drags the game if used this way). Cross-class skillmonkeying will be around the same power (but less versatility) as a bard's knack, while class skillmonkeying will be around the same power (but more versatility) as a factotum's insight.


Thousand Steps (Su)
A monk attains flashes of insight concerning the void between worlds, enabling her to momentarily step and slip through the vast nothingness.

At 8th level, once per day, a monk gains a supernatural Dimension Door effect as a standard action. She may instead gain a Greater Planeshift effect starting level 13, or an Astral Projection effect starting level 18. Creatures brought along, who don't have this ability, become dazed (ignoring immunity) for a minute, as their minds and bodies readjust from the experience. Treat her level as her CL for these effects.

By concentrating for ten minutes, she either replenishes the daily limit of this ability, or ignores for one round per 10 levels any effect that blocks/delays teleportation and other interdimensional travel.


Note: This counts as Abundant Step for purposes of prerequisites and ACFs.

This ability is initially, without Ki expenditure, a 1/encounter Dimension Door, which is par for many other monk fixes. The difference lies in the Ki alternative cost, and that a monk later gains more useful abilities related to the Astral plane, which being considered as the plane of the mind/void/space between worlds, makes some sense fluffwise.


Pondered Perceptions (Ex)
By achieving a higher degree of consciousness, a monk enables herself to examine the world from an infinite number of perspectives.

At 9th level, a monk gains a field of absolute awareness around herself that stretches to a range equal to her combined ranks in Spot and Listen in feet (rounded to the nearest increment of 5). Within this field, she automatically detects all (even traps) as though she succeeded Spot and Listen (including epic) checks against them, as well as ignoring any concealment and cover. The entire surrounding, even the parts that normally obscure sight or hearing, effectively becomes her eyes and ears.

By concentrating for five minutes, any source of an attack (as defined in the Invisibility spell) that happens or passes through her field are also automatically detected. This enhanced awareness lasts for 1 minute per level.


Note: Darkness, blindness, deafness, being hidden or invisible, being under a silence effect, and lack of line of sight (such as being blocked by a wall or a fog) doesn't affect this form of perception. However, this ability does not remove required line of effect.

This is a much shorter ranged, but almost always better True Seeing + Ring of X-Ray Vision. This is mainly made to combat LoS breakers commonly available from Wands of (Creation) spells, as well as autodetect hidden creatures whether they snipe or hit-and-run closely. The auto-spot/listen is inspired by UserShadow7989's monk fix.


Empty Body (Su)
A monk's journey through the physical realms finally becomes intertwined with her journey to the realms of limitless thoughts and ideas, allowing her to occasionally slip between these opposite worlds.

At 10th level, once per day, a monk gains a supernatural Swift Etherealness effect on herself as a swift action. She may instead gain an Ethereal Jaunt effect starting level 14, or an Etherealness effect starting level 18. Creatures brought along with the Etherealness effect, who don't have this ability, become dazed (ignoring immunity) for a minute, as their minds and bodies readjust from the experience. Treat her level as her CL for these effects.

By concentrating for ten minutes, she either replenishes the daily limit of this ability, or affects creatures and objects for one round per 10 levels as though she isn't ethereal.


Same deal with Abundant Step being usable more times per day, as well as making it usable earlier with its weaker versions.


Diamond Spirit (Ex)
The roots of a monk's realities are entrenched further into the depths of her soul, becoming more unyielding against the manipulations of forces from beyond.

At 11th level, a monk gains spell resistance equal to her level + 10. She may choose to ignore this SR for any given effect as she pleases, and this SR automatically ignores (harmless) effects if she is otherwise unable to make her own call (as when unconscious or under compulsion effects).

By concentrating for eleven minutes, she gains Magic Immunity (as in Epic Level Handbook, but also affects psionics) for one round per 10 levels.


Note: This counts as Diamond Soul for purposes of prerequisites and ACFs.

Dropped it to two levels earlier and fixed the monk's common SR issue (as in Jiriku's fix). Also thrown in a really great deal for those who are willing to pay the price, which would likely only see use on an emergency.

Thousand Hands (Su)
A monk attains flashes of insight concerning the souls of the world, enabling her to momentarily reach out to horde of creatures from afar.

At 12th level, once per day, for one round, whenever a monk makes an unarmed or touch attack, she may instead do it to each target creature on an area of either a (5ft per level) cone or a (10ft per level) line. For each such attack, she may choose a different area. While using this ability, an image (doesn't block line of sight or effect) of a thousand elongated arms sprouts from her towards where she makes the attack/s.

By concentrating for twelve minutes, she replenishes the daily limit of this ability.


Aside from being an iconic technique of some traditional sage-like characters, the origin story is supposedly for these hands to assist those who are in need. Likewise, Thousand Palms can be made to either aid many creatures at a time, or directly helping creatures by striking down their enemies (the iconic effect).

This can combo with many monk abilities, such as Flurry of Blows, Purity of Spirit, Wholeness of Body, Thousand Steps, and Empty Body. With the right tools, it could be utilized for damaging, battlefield control, buffing, or debuffing.


Serene Grace (Ex)
A monk's inner peace translates outwards, enabling her to move with more grace and finesse.

At 13th level, a monk's movements (i.e. movement from one square to another) no longer trigger attacks of opportunity, traps, contingencies, or readied actions, whenever she doesn't want to.

By concentrating for seven minutes, she may have her actions at any one round per 10 levels in the future not trigger any attacks of opportunity, traps, contingencies (such as the spell, the power, and the item), or readied actions. Multiple uses of Serene Grace don't stack, but she may hold on to its use indefinitely.


For a class with a big speed bonus, it seems logical to assume that such movement-related benefits will fit in just fine. The passive benefits only affect a monk's movement, so it shouldn't be too unbalancing.

The activated ability shouldn't be too unbalancing, given the cost (around half of your total Ki at the level you get it, and ~1/3 of your total Ki by 20th level (and lasting for 2 rounds). This ability simply is a round (or two, at 20th level) of insurance that it's not only one side of the conflict that are prepared.


Pondered Words (Ex)
By contemplating on her intentions and the feelings of others around her, a monk is able to silence the unnecessary noise that hinders them from understanding one another.

At 14th level, a monk becomes able to speak and understand the language of any creature, and she may now substitute her Wisdom modifier for her Charisma modifier on Diplomacy and Handle Animal checks.

By concentrating for seven minutes, she ignores all modifiers to Bluff checks aside from ranks and ability modifier for 1 minute per level.


This is directly borrowed from Jiriku's monk, with the addition of an anti-Glibness type of mechanic.


Singularity (Ex)
A monk's mind and body become perfectly attuned with her spirit, providing her with a higher control of herself.

At 15th level, a monk ignores effects that forces her to take actions that the spirit isn't willing to do, such as mind-affecting effects, possessions, and the Control Body power. Likewise, creatures created/crafted from her body parts and duplicates/clones/replicas of her can only be brought into existence if her spirit is willing to.

By concentrating for one minute, a monk may reroll any d20 she makes that results on a natural 1 for 1 minute per level.


This permanently takes care of the mind-affecting effects, with minor additional perks that will most likely not come up on a regular basis (but serves as a fluff ability).


Thousand Illuminations (Ex)
A monk attains flashes of insight concerning the realities of the world, enabling her to momentarily tap to the universal consciousness.

At 16th level, once per day per 10 levels, she gains an extraordinary Hypercognition (as the power) effect as a standard or immediate (as the power) action. She may instead gain a Metafaculty effect starting level 20.

By concentrating for one minute, she may substitute her Wisdom modifier for her Intelligence modifier on a skill of her choice for 1 minute per level.


This aids a Monk in contributing to encounters where knowledge/intelligence is more important, reducing the MADness for Int this time, if the Monk ever bothered with it.


Empty Spirit (Ex)
A monk's spirit can achieve a state of complete emptiness, reacting to all situations without premeditation or thought.

At 17th level, a monk can no longer be surprised or flat-footed.

By concentrating for seventeen minutes, a monk gains a single full-round action that she can take at any time in the future. She can only have one full-round action at a time "prepared" this way.


This is directly borrowed from Jiriku's monk, with the addition of a prepared "Greater Celerity" type of mechanic.


Timeless Body (Ex)
After continuous pursuit of mortal perfection, a monk's physical vessel finally ceases to be disturbed by the ripples of time.

At 18th level, a monk no longer takes penalties to her ability scores for aging, and cannot be magically aged. Bonuses still accrue, and any such penalties that she has already taken remain in place. Her metabolism changes drastically, removing her maximum lifespan and the need to eat/drink, breathe, or sleep. She may still choose to do such things if it would benefit her, such as drinking potions, resting to naturally heal, or resting to regain relevant resources, such as power points or spell slots.

By concentrating for eighteen minutes, her body ignores all harmful (such as from environment, attacks, and abilities) and helpful effects (excluding her monk class features) for one round per 10 levels.


Timeless Body, now at 18th level, effectively makes a Monk leave her mortality behind, and turns to something more similar to an outsider (and then some). Also added in the rather appropriate Timeless Body (the power) effect, for quite the dear price.


Pondered Actions (Ex)
By contemplating on her strengths and weaknesses, a monk is able to outmanoeuvre negativities and disturbances hindering her path.

At 19th level, a monk may concentrate for up to three minutes. For each minute of concentration, choose one of the following benefits for her next skill check:
be able to take 10/20 even when threatened/distracted
be able to take 20 without incurring the risk of failure (e.g. making take 20 on UMD possible)
be able to take 20 using the amount of time for taking 10 would.
She can't use this ability again until she makes her next skill check.

By concentrating for two minutes, a monk may take 10 on her next ability check or opposed roll, even when she normally couldn't.


This gives the monk a Skill Mastery analogue, with the added effect of being able to take 20 in combat. The second part gives monks some nice perks (for a price, as usual) to aid with special attacks, as well as better initiative checks.

After reaching 20th level, this basically allows taking 10 on any skill checks anytime, or to quickly take 20 on skill checks if not threatened/distracted.


Transcendence
The monk finally reaches the pinnacle of her enlightenment and, with that, realizes that the first step of her long journey has just begun.

At 20th level, a monk becomes a magical creature, an Outsider (Native) treated as native to all planes. She counts as either an Outsider or her previous type at any time, whichever is more beneficial to her. She gains a damage reduction equal to 10 + her remaining Ki, which can be bypassed by an epic weapon aligned to an ethical alignment different from hers. Furthermore, she reduces the concentration needed in her class features (except for Ki and Epiphany) by one minute.


Aside from the addition of a Ki-centric feature to reward the monk for playing with Ki, the rest are basically reworded/fixed versions of Perfect Self. The monk's typing now works similar to how ghost touch weapons count as corporeal/incorporeal whenever beneficial. Being native to all planes prevents the monk from simply being BFRd with Banishment, and the damage reduction is buffed and now requires Epic weapons to bypass.

ben-zayb
2015-03-21, 06:19 AM
Variant Monk: Monk of the Heavens
Monks of the Heavens, also referred to as Yamabushi and Mountain Mystics, are reclusive monks with stronger supernatural inclines due to more sensitive spiritual connections. In contrast to the Monks of the Earth, also referred to as Youxia and Wandering Sages, whose way of life usually involves discovering enlightenment throughout their infinite journeys, Monks of the Heavens seek enlightenment from within. This emphasizes their lessons of self-discovery and the purging of outside influences from their own body, mind, as well as spirit.

Using this variant means all of the Monk's abilities are changed as noted below:

Ki (replaces: maximum Ki and effects of having at least one Ki)
A monk's Ki pool can have a maximum amount of Ki equal to her Wisdom or Constitution modifier, whichever is better, + half her level. As long as she has at least one Ki, she automatically succeeds on all Constitution checks, and her greater flurry instead grants an extra attack at 6th level and every 5 levels thereafter.

Unarmed Strike (replaces: default damage scaling)
At 5th level, and every 5 levels thereafter, her unarmed strike damage die increases as though it went up a size category.

Resilient Spirit (replaces: concentration effect)
By concentrating for five minutes, a monk may force her Resilient Spirit on an ally within 5ft per level, giving the latter a one-time use of this ability's passive effect (including the improvements if the monk is of a high enough level). Multiple uses don't stack on the same ally.

No True Path (replaces: movement speed bonus)
At 3rd level, a monk's threat range for the purposes of provoking (but not taking) attacks of opportunity is increased by +10ft per three levels, which doesn't stack with increased reach or threat range from sizes above medium. At 9th level, her 5ft-steps gain extra movement equal to half this ability's bonus.

Diamond Body (replaces: everything except the enhancement bonus effects)
Her body now gains additional hardness and hit points based on this enhancement bonus, as though it is both a weapon and an armor. At 10th level, any damage she ever takes from a single attack in excess of ten times her hit die is negated. At 16th level, she gains Regeneration equal to this enhancement bonus, bypassed by damage aligned to an ethical alignment different from hers. This is an extraordinary effect.

By concentrating for four minutes, a monk treats her body as having any number of armor special abilities with a total cost no greater than the cost of this enhancement bonus on armor. This supernatural effect lasts for one minute per level, doesn't stack with itself, doesn't grant additional hardness and hit points, and can't select abilities with a daily limit.

Wholeness of Body (replaces: everything except for the concentration effect)
At 6th level, a monk can heal wounds (her own or those of others) as a standard action touch attack. She can heal a number of hit points of damage per day equal to her maximum hit points, and she can spread this healing out among several uses. At 11th level, she may use this in place of an attack (but still limited to touch range) instead of as a standard action. She may combine this with Purity of Spirit, using only a single standard action (or an attack at 11th level) to affect the same target.

Diamond Spirit (Ex or Su) (replaces: concentration effect)
By concentrating for eleven minutes, a monk wards the area around him up to a radius of 10ft per level. For 1 hour per level, this area becomes physically inaccessible (even from the ethereal plane) to extraplanar outsiders, spirits (as defined in Oriental Adventures), and creatures currently possessing others, additionally forcing such creatures already caught in the area to make a Will save against a DC of 10 + half the monk's level + her Wisdom modifier or be banished back to their home plane (if extraplanar outsiders) or destroyed (otherwise). A successful save only shunts a creature to the nearest unwarded free space. This is a supernatural effect.

Insightful Lesson (replaces: all of Serene Grace)
At 13th level, whenever a monk succeeds on either an attack roll or an opposed roll, she may grant allies who saw her success an insight bonus equal to +1 per 3 levels on each of their next roll (exactly the same to the one she succeeded at) against the same creature.

By concentrating for seven minutes, the insight bonus she chooses to grant from the next Insightful Lesson is instead equal to +2 per 3 levels.






New Feats

Ki Training
Prerequisites: Ki or Ki Power class feature, Wisdom 12
Benefit: You gain 1 Ki.
Special: You may take this feat for a number of times equal to your Wisdom modifier.

Unshakeable Ki Focus
Prerequisites: Epiphany class feature
Benefit: As long as you have at least one remaining Ki, you automatically succeed on Concentration checks (if needed) to regain Ki.
Normal: You must roll and succeed on a Concentration check to continue on a task after being distracted.

Contemplation of Fate
Prerequisites: Epiphany class feature, any Luck feat
Benefit: Once per hour, by concentrating for five minutes, you replenish the daily limit of a Luck feat of your choice.

Contemplation of Inspiration
Prerequisites: Epiphany class feature, Inspiration class feature
Benefit: By concentrating for five minutes, you replenish half of your maximum Inspiration points.

Contemplation of Violence
Prerequisites: Epiphany class feature, Sneak Attack or Sudden Strike class feature
Benefit: By concentrating for a minute, your next attack counts the target as flat-footed, even when it normally wouldn't be.

Contemplation of Cause
Prerequisites: Epiphany class feature, Smite Evil or Smite Good class feature
Benefit: By concentrating for five minutes, you replenish the daily limit of either your Lay on Hands, Deadly Touch, Smite Evil, or Smite Good, ability.








I'm ready for the hunt! PEACH away!

AuraTwilight
2015-03-21, 03:12 PM
No full BAB? What?

ben-zayb
2015-03-22, 10:57 AM
No full BAB? What?

While I don't completely agree with the idea of monks having full BAB, what I did as a compromise to those who do was give the monk the ability to gain full BAB by having enough focus (at least 1 Ki).

Randomguy
2015-03-24, 09:53 PM
Seems like a pretty neat fix.

Serene grace is completely redundant. It's a DC15 tumble check to avoid provoking an attack of opportunity, and you thanks to No True Path you auto-succeed at DC40 tumble checks as long as you've got at least 1 rank in tumble.

The working for Purity of Spirit is a bit wonky: Why "indefinitely suppress" instead of just flat out immunity? It amounts to the same thing, and the way it is now it's a bit unclear which effects are suppressed indefinitely and which ones are suppressed for 1 min / level.

Why did you make it so that No True Path gives auto-success on some skill checks, instead of a bonus to skill checks? For one thing, this version means that you can ignore penalties, so you can auto-succeed on a DC10 check even if you've got a -50 penalty. (This is a bit of an exaggeration, but there are skills that give you a penalty instead of changing the DC, like tumbling at full speed). For another thing, it gives the somewhat absurd situation where, if, for example, a player has 2 ranks in Swim and 6 monk levels, they can auto-succeed a DC 40 check, but will always fail a DC 41 check. These bonuses are also kind of ridiculous: You can stop putting ranks in Balance, Swim, Tumble, and Climb at level 6, (as long as you max those skills up to that level) because at level 6 you will auto-succeed every single possible check, even epic checks, for that skill.

ben-zayb
2015-03-27, 07:44 PM
Seems like a pretty neat fix.Thanks!
Serene grace is completely redundant. It's a DC15 tumble check to avoid provoking an attack of opportunity, and you thanks to No True Path you auto-succeed at DC40 tumble checks as long as you've got at least 1 rank in tumble.Oops, that's correct. I'm thinking to bump the activated ability to a passive, which shouldn't be too powerful, as it only pertains to moving, and then giving it an activated ability to not trigger the next amount of AoOs, readied actions, traps, and contingencies equal to the minutes of concentration (maximum of half monk level). Thoughts?

The working for Purity of Spirit is a bit wonky: Why "indefinitely suppress" instead of just flat out immunity? It amounts to the same thing, and the way it is now it's a bit unclear which effects are suppressed indefinitely and which ones are suppressed for 1 min / level. I thought it'd make the wording of the activated ability simpler, but I can see where it becomes unclear. Let me know what you think of the reworded ability.

Any comments on whether the ability itself gives too much? I'm starting to worry that it might have given too much immunities and pseudo-immunities.

Why did you make it so that No True Path gives auto-success on some skill checks, instead of a bonus to skill checks? For one thing, this version means that you can ignore penalties, so you can auto-succeed on a DC10 check even if you've got a -50 penalty. (This is a bit of an exaggeration, but there are skills that give you a penalty instead of changing the DC, like tumbling at full speed). For another thing, it gives the somewhat absurd situation where, if, for example, a player has 2 ranks in Swim and 6 monk levels, they can auto-succeed a DC 40 check, but will always fail a DC 41 check. These bonuses are also kind of ridiculous: You can stop putting ranks in Balance, Swim, Tumble, and Climb at level 6, (as long as you max those skills up to that level) because at level 6 you will auto-succeed every single possible check, even epic checks, for that skill.The actual wording is that penalties always count as a DC increase on a particular skill check. The reason for giving auto-success instead of a bonus is that they might be abused otherwise, such as in the Sudden Leap maneuver where you move equal to your check result to a certain distance regardless of your movement speed limits and in Swooping Dragon Strike that has a saving throw equal to your check result (these abilities have no set DCs so they don't get the benefit of No True Path, at least based on my RAI). With other homebrew ToB materials on the table (not a bad assumption if your DM is already open to this homebrew anyway) this could open up more ridiculous things.

ben-zayb
2015-03-27, 11:44 PM
Double Post: made an update, including proofreading corrections and the addition of a variant "Tank" monk.

Randomguy
2015-03-29, 11:31 PM
Thanks!Oops, that's correct. I'm thinking to bump the activated ability to a passive, which shouldn't be too powerful, as it only pertains to moving, and then giving it an activated ability to not trigger the next amount of AoOs, readied actions, traps, and contingencies equal to the minutes of concentration (maximum of half monk level). Thoughts?

I'm not sure. It might be a bit overpowered at higher levels? At higher levels you're dealing enough damage to knock out a d4 caster in one full attack, and blocking contingencies and readied actions gets rid of a casters last ditch "get out of melee range" defence.



I thought it'd make the wording of the activated ability simpler, but I can see where it becomes unclear. Let me know what you think of the reworded ability.

The phrasing is much clearer now.



Any comments on whether the ability itself gives too much? I'm starting to worry that it might have given too much immunities and pseudo-immunities.

I don't think it's too much: You've got perfect saves, evasion and mettle, and your three key stats are also the three stats responsible for saving throws, so you'd be making most of those saves anyway. They only one there that might be excessive is non-harmless transmutations. That's a very powerful ability, and it's also very difficult to get, normally.


Now that I take a closer look, your version of flurry of blows seems a bit weird. Am I misreading it, or do you allow standard action flurry of blows? You specifically mention attacks of opportunity and such, but not regular standard action attacks. Also, the progression table doesn't match the description: At level 8, a full attack would be +5/+5/+5/+0, but you don't have that last +0 there. Is the table supposed to be a standard action flurry? You should probably explicitly state that.

ben-zayb
2015-03-31, 06:53 AM
I'm not sure. It might be a bit overpowered at higher levels? At higher levels you're dealing enough damage to knock out a d4 caster in one full attack, and blocking contingencies and readied actions gets rid of a casters last ditch "get out of melee range" defence. How about the different implementation that I made, which now lasts for 1 round (2 at level 20) per 7 minutes of concentration or 7 Ki (roughly half the monk's Ki Pool the moment she gets the ability, or roughly a third at 20th level).
The phrasing is much clearer now.

I don't think it's too much: You've got perfect saves, evasion and mettle, and your three key stats are also the three stats responsible for saving throws, so you'd be making most of those saves anyway. They only one there that might be excessive is non-harmless transmutations. That's a very powerful ability, and it's also very difficult to get, normally.Alright! So far, so good.


Now that I take a closer look, your version of flurry of blows seems a bit weird. Am I misreading it, or do you allow standard action flurry of blows? You specifically mention attacks of opportunity and such, but not regular standard action attacks. Also, the progression table doesn't match the description: At level 8, a full attack would be +5/+5/+5/+0, but you don't have that last +0 there. Is the table supposed to be a standard action flurry? You should probably explicitly state that.The idea is that flurry is no longer restricted to full-attacks, although a full-attack flurry will now give you effectively twice as many attacks because it's now as many as your normal iterative attacks based on monk BAB.

I have since clarified flurry of blows so that it works with AoOs, standard action attacks, and most variation of standard or full-round action attacks (strikes, flyby attack, whirlwind attack, normal charge, normal full-attack, pounce-style charge, etc.). With the way it's worded, it still shouldn't grant extra attacks from free attacks such from Improved Trip, or off-hand attacks. Feel free to tell me what you think of this "fix" of a monk's flurry of blows.