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View Full Version : D&D 3.x Class Arcanomancer 3.5 PrC PEACH



BootStrapTommy
2015-08-05, 12:23 PM
Arcanomancer
For now it's a working title...

http://www.gameinformer.com/cfs-filesystemfile.ashx/__key/CommunityServer-Components-ImageFileViewer/CommunityServer-Blogs-Components-WeblogFiles-00-00-00-91-32/5305.2l9ilb6.png_2D00_610x0.png

Few options (none very good) exist for martial characters to effectively counter magic users. In that spirit inspired by the Occult Slayer, the Suel Arcanamach, and the Templars from Dragon Age, I decided to try my hand at making a class for just such a purpose. Whether I succeeded is up for debate.

The name is largely just a working title, feel free to suggest something better. The idea behind the name is that an arcanomancer is so physically and mentally disciplined that they have achieved the ablility to mentally manipulate the Weave (from which magic gets its power). And for a lack of a better word, I'm calling that "arcanomancy". Unlike a spellcaster, this does not manifest in spellcasting, but in the ability to manipulate local access to the Weave, or "null" it. But much like the name, this class flavor is only currently functional, not final.

Hit Die: d10



Level
BAB
Fort
Ref
Will
Special


1st
+1
+2
+2
+2
Weapon Bond, Steadfast Determination, Fast Movement


2nd
+2
+3
+3
+3
Dispelling Strike 2/day


3rd
+3
+3
+3
+3
Auravision


4th
+4
+4
+4
+4
Mind over Magic 2/day


5th
+5
+4
+4
+4
Weave Warp 2/day


6th
+6
+5
+5
+5
Dispelling Strike 3/day


7th
+7
+5
+5
+5
Embrace the Void


8th
+8
+6
+6
+6
Mind over Magic 3/day


9th
+9
+6
+6
+6
Dispelling Strike 4/day


10th
+10
+7
+7
+7
Spell Void 2/day, Weave Warp 3/day



To qualify to become an arcanomancer, a character must fulfill all the following criteria:

Base Attack Bonus: +5
Skills: Spellcraft 4 ranks, Knowledge (arcana) 4 ranks.
Feats: Mage Slayer, Endurance
Special: An inspiring arcanomancer must be taken under the tutelage of an existing arcanomancer and endure a long, grueling training process.
The arcanomancer class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Bluff (Cha), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Disguise (Cha), Escape Artist (Dex), Hide (Dex), Jump (Str), Knowledge (arcana) (Int), Knowledge (history) (Int), Knowledge (the planes) (Int), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Profession (Wis), Search (Int), Sense Motive (Wis), Spellcraft (Int), Spot (Wis), Swim (Str), and Tumble (Dex).

Skill Points at Each Level: 4 + Int modifier.
All the following are class features of the arcanomancer prestige class:

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Arcanomancers are proficient with all simple and martial weapons, all types of armor and shields.

Weapon Bond (Su): An arcanomancer must choose a weapon of at least masterwork quality as a focus for her power. Upon her selection, she forms an immediate bond with the chosen weapon that imbues it with her powers to control the Weave. She gains Weapon Focus and Improved Critical with the weapon and any time she successfully attacks a creature with spells or with spell-like abilities with the weapon, it deals an additional 1d8 damage. If the weapon has magical properties, it is now immune to both antimagic fields and disjunctions. If this particular weapon is lost or destroyed, the arcanomancer loses all the weapon's abilities until she acquires and bonds with another weapon of at least masterwork quality. The arcanomancer must spend at least one day per class level exclusively training with the weapon to create a new bond.

Fast Movement (Ex): An arcanomancer's base land speed is faster than the norm for her race by +10ft. Apply this bonus before modifying the arcanomancer's speed for any load carried or armor worn.

Steadfast Determination (Ex): The physical training and discipline required of an arcanomancer lends itself to her skills at manipulating the Weave and resisting magic. At 1st level, an arcanomancer can use her Constitution modifier in place of her Wisdom modifier on Will saves. An arcanomancer also does not automatically fail a Fortitude save on a natural 1.

Dispelling Strike (Ex): Once per day, an arcanomancer of 2nd level or higher can attempt a dispelling strike with one normal attack. If she hits, she deals normal damage, and the victim is subject to a targeted greater dispel magic. The arcanomancerís dispel check is 1d20 + class level + 6. At 6th level, an arcanomancer can use this power three times per day, and at 9th level she can use it four times per day.

Auravision (Ex): At 3rd level, an arcanomancer gains the ability to see magical auras at a range of up to 90ft. This functions as detect magic.

Mind over Magic (Su): At 4th level, an arcanomancer can cause a spell or a spell-like ability targeted against her to rebound on the originator as an immediate action. This ability otherwise functions as the greater spell turning spell (caster level equal to the arcanomancer's character level). An arcanomancer can use this ability three times per day at 8th.

Weave Warp (Ex): Arcanomancers can develop such mastery of their local Weave that they are able to contract the Weave behind them and expand the Weave in front of them to create a warp bubble capable of moving them over a distance instantly. At 5th level, an arcanomancer can teleport to an unoccupied space in her line of sight up to 400ft away as a swift action twice per day. In addition, the arcanomancer can use this ability as an immediate action to hitch a ride along with any magical teleportation cast by a spellcaster which she threatens, travelling to the safe, unoccupied space nearest to the caster's destination. At 10th level, an arcanomancer can use this ability three times per day.

Embrace the Void (Ex): At 5th level, an arcanomancer can embrace the void of the Weave and induce a state of mental absence, thereby becoming immune to mind-affecting effects. She can suppress or resume this ability as a free action.

Spell Void (Su): At 10th level, an arcanomancer's ability to control the local Weave manifests in the ability to void magical effects in her vicinity. This functions as antimagic field spell (caster level equal to the arcanomancer's character level) centered on the arcanomancer with a 20ft radius. It does not effect any magical items worn or carried by the arcanomancer, nor any spells or spell-like effects cast on the arcanomancer prior to the effect which the arcanomancer has deemed beneficial. The arcanomancer can use this twice per day and it can be activated or suppressed as a swift action.

DarkBunny91
2015-08-05, 12:34 PM
Is the exotic weapon a feature of the class? Does your choice of exotic matter to the class at all? If not, why add it?

BootStrapTommy
2015-08-05, 01:38 PM
There are a numerous exotic weapons with the potential to synergize with the class (like the duom, or the spiked chain). As for flavorwise? It's a class, like monk, which is supposed to be based on discipline and extensive mental and physical training, so learning a complex, difficult weapon seems like something of a understandable form of training.

But maybe not. :smallwink:

EDIT: I removed it.

Qoios
2015-08-05, 01:59 PM
In 3.5, Caster Supremacy is just a fact. And unfortunately, few options (none very good) exist for martial characters to effectively counter magic users. In that spirit inspired by the Occult Slayer, the Suel Arcanamach, and the Templars from Dragon Age, I decided to try my hand at making an effective class for just such a purpose. Whether I succeeded is up for debate.
I would say that you pretty decisively did not. I don't intend that to sound rude, but looking at the abilities available to these guys, I just can't fathom them defeating an equal-level spellcaster. If the spellcaster is aware of the abilities these guys have, then I don't see them even inconveniencing a spellcaster. It's just too little, too infrequently, and does not address the things that create caster supremacy in the first place.


Steadfast Determination (Ex): The physical training and discipline required of an arcanomancer lends itself to her skills at manipulating the Weave and resisting magic. At 1st level, an arcanomancer can use her Constitution modifier in place of her Wisdom modifier on Will saves. An arcanomancer also does not automatically fail a Fortitude save on a natural 1.
This is one of the better abilities the class grants. Two saves on one already solid stat? Yes, please! However, the weak Reflex save hurts, as does the fact that many spellcasters don't care what your saves are, whether it is because they use summons and battlefield controls, or because they use No-Save-Just-Suck spells, etc. This is nice, but it doesn't address the fundamental imbalances between casting & not-cast


Dispelling Strike (Su): Once per day, an arcanomancer of 2nd level or higher can attempt a dispelling strike with one normal melee attack. If she hits, she deals normal damage, and the victim is subject to a targeted greater dispel magic. The arcanomancerís dispel check is 1d20 + class level + 6. If an arcanomancer makes a dispelling strike against a creature with no spells or effects to dispel, the dispelling strike has no effect, but the ability is used up for that day. At 6th level, an arcanomancer can use this power two times per day, and at 9th level she can use it three times per day.
If casters were not notorious for never being in melee range, this could have been a weak ability. As is, it might as well not exist. But even if you could get within range, it is still not a good solution for dealing with spellcasters. Most spellcasters do everything they can to boost their caster level, so they are very likely to win against a theoretically "fair" dispel check. Even if the spellcaster you're fighting did not boost their caster level at all, this ability will work 1/2 the time, on average, and their is no clause that failed uses are not expended (in fact there is a clause to the contrary). Besides which, you're having to make two different successful rolls here, one against their AC, and one against their Caster Level+10, assuming they use no Miss Chances of any kind, or Mirror Images, etc, which spellcasters love to use. All of that strapped to the fact that it can only be done three times per day at level 12 makes it extremely unreliable. That's an average (in good conditions) of 1.5 successful dispels a day.


Auravision (Su): At 3rd level, an arcanomancer gains the ability to see magical auras at a range of up to 60ft. This functions as detect magic.
Spellcasters get this at level 1 (functionally). Enough said.


Mind over Magic (Su): At 4th level, an arcanomancer can cause a spell or a spell-like ability targeted against her to rebound on the originator as a free action. This ability otherwise functions as the spell turning spell (caster level equal to the arcanomancer's class level). An arcanomancer can use this ability twice per day at 8th.
This is, actually, pretty good for dealing with targeted spells, but the low uses/day kills it.


Evasion (Ex): At 5th level, an arcanomancer can avoid magical attacks with great agility. If she makes a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save (such as a fireball or a dragon's breath weapon), she instead takes no damage. A helpless arcanomancer (such as one who is unconscious or paralyzed) does not gain the benefit of evasion.
Evasion is always nice, but it is hindered by the lack of reflex-boosting effects, and a low reflex save


Embrace the Void (Ex): At 7th level, an arcanomancer can embrace the void of the Weave and induce a state of mental absence, thereby becoming immune to mind-affecting effects. She can suppress or resume this ability as a free action.
This is a bit more like it (sadly, as I hate the notion of immunities as a needful part of defense design). Unfortunately, spellcasters are like drugs, the safest response is a hard "No".


Spell Void (Su): At 10th level, an arcanomancer's ability to control the local Weave manifests in the ability to void magical effects in her vicinity. This functions as antimagic field spell (caster level equal to the arcanomancer's class level) cast as a standard action. It does not effect any magical items worn or carried by the arcanomancer. The arcanomancer can use this once per day and it can be suppressed as a free action.
Sorcerers could drop AMFs 5 levels ago. Wizards could do it 6 levels ago. Either one of them, even then, could drop more than one a day.

I appreciate what you're trying to do, but casters really are insanely imbalanced compared to mundanes. If you want to make something capable of fighting them, it'll need to be a little more ambitious than this.

BootStrapTommy
2015-08-05, 02:35 PM
I would say that you pretty decisively did not. I don't intend that to sound rude, but looking at the abilities available to these guys, I just can't fathom them defeating an equal-level spellcaster. If the spellcaster is aware of the abilities these guys have, then I don't see them even inconveniencing a spellcaster. It's just too little, too infrequently, and does not address the things that create caster supremacy in the first place. I designed it on the conservative side, figured it would be easier to make it stronger than weaker. It's worth noting that every class feature is a slightly buffed version of an existing class feature available to another prestige class, with the exception of Spell Void. And in that sense, it is still a better option than any existing martial option. Not that that says much.

Theoretically I could also add a modified and buffed Occult Slayer's Weapon Bond. And I suppose I could expand general uses.

EDIT: I did expand uses. And I buffed a few details.


This is one of the better abilities the class grants. Two saves on one already solid stat? Yes, please! However, the weak Reflex save hurts, as does the fact that many spellcasters don't care what your saves are, whether it is because they use summons and battlefield controls, or because they use No-Save-Just-Suck spells, etc. This is nice, but it doesn't address the fundamental imbalances between casting & not-cast

Evasion is always nice, but it is hindered by the lack of reflex-boosting effects, and a low reflex save
I chose Fort and Will because Will is the most common spell save, while Fort save based spells are the most brutal of Save-Or-Sucks (since they include most Save-Or-Dies). I figured the class could deal with a poor Ref, given that they have a d10 and could easily tank the damage. Evasion was added under an attempt to at least address that.

I chose not to make Ref strong because I've never seen a 3.5 PrC with universal strong saves. If you know of one, let me know and I'll change that.

EDIT: For the record, there is a precedent. Apostle of Peace, for example.


If casters were not notorious for never being in melee range, this could have been a weak ability. As is, it might as well not exist. But even if you could get within range, it is still not a good solution for dealing with spellcasters. Most spellcasters do everything they can to boost their caster level, so they are very likely to win against a theoretically "fair" dispel check. Even if the spellcaster you're fighting did not boost their caster level at all, this ability will work 1/2 the time, on average, and their is no clause that failed uses are not expended (in fact there is a clause to the contrary). Besides which, you're having to make two different successful rolls here, one against their AC, and one against their Caster Level+10, assuming they use no Miss Chances of any kind, or Mirror Images, etc, which spellcasters love to use. All of that strapped to the fact that it can only be done three times per day at level 12 makes it extremely unreliable. That's an average (in good conditions) of 1.5 successful dispels a day. It is also worth noting the Mage Slayer rereq opens up the class to the feats Pierce Magical Concealment and Pierce Magical Protection, feats which address that problem and are logical supplements to the class. Having a good reach weapon and Combat Reflexes (part of the logic behind the exotic weapon proficiency) might also address this issue.

EDIT: Chose to remove dispelling strike's "if there's nothing to dispell, it's wasted" feature.


Sorcerers could drop AMFs 5 levels ago. Wizards could do it 6 levels ago. Either one of them, even then, could drop more than one a day. You are ignoring the fact that it is a supernatural antimagic field which renders the arcanomancer immune to magic for 1000 combat rounds, while retaining the use of her magic items.

EDIT: It's now 1500 rounds, at 20ft. Retaining spell buffs. Double the uses.

Qoios
2015-08-05, 02:59 PM
I would add some ways for them to disable magical movement modes, or give them some ranged options, because as it is, they can't get close enough to a caster to do anything.

BootStrapTommy
2015-08-05, 03:02 PM
I would add some ways for them to disable magical movement modes, or give them some ranged options, because as it is, they can't get close enough to a caster to do anything. I had honestly contemplated Fast Movement that scales over the class to address this issue. Or Supernatural Haste. Maybe I'll revisit the idea.

Qoios
2015-08-05, 03:05 PM
I had honestly contemplated Fast Movement that scales over the class to address this issue. Or Supernatural Haste. Maybe I'll revisit the idea.
I meant for dealing with things like Flight, Earth Gliding, Teleportation, Incorporeality, etc. Not just moving a little faster.

BootStrapTommy
2015-08-05, 03:12 PM
I meant for dealing with things like Flight, Earth Gliding, Teleportation, Incorporeality, etc. Not just moving a little faster. Would removing Dispelling Strike's melee requirement work?

Qoios
2015-08-05, 03:21 PM
Would removing Dispelling Strike's melee requirement work?
That will definitely help.

One other thing I'd like to point out is this: Everything you are doing, a spellcaster can do, but better or sooner, or more often. This guy might be much better at fighting spellcasters than another mundane character, but a spellcaster that wants to can still outdo you at both melee combat, and anti-caster tactics. The best solution to a spellcaster is still another spellcaster.

However, that isn't even the biggest problem. The biggest problem is that Caster Supremacy isn't about PvP combat. It isn't about casters being impossible for mundanes to kill. It is about the fact that magical solutions to problems are more versatile, more absolute, faster, more consistent, etc. The solution to Caster Supremacy is not about making other classes able to kill casters. It is about making other classes able to be as relevant as casters. That, I think is what ultimately makes this endeavor a little pointless.

JeenLeen
2015-08-05, 03:34 PM
That will definitely help.

One other thing I'd like to point out is this: Everything you are doing, a spellcaster can do, but better or sooner, or more often. This guy might be much better at fighting spellcasters than another mundane character, but a spellcaster that wants to can still outdo you at both melee combat, and anti-caster tactics. The best solution to a spellcaster is still another spellcaster.

However, that isn't even the biggest problem. The biggest problem is that Caster Supremacy isn't about PvP combat. It isn't about casters being impossible for mundanes to kill. It is about the fact that magical solutions to problems are more versatile, more absolute, faster, more consistent, etc. The solution to Caster Supremacy is not about making other classes able to kill casters. It is about making other classes able to be as relevant as casters. That, I think is what ultimately makes this endeavor a little pointless.
I agree with this assessment of the class's goal, but I'll put in my 2 cents to try to improve it.

I agree completely with make Dispelling Strike usable at range. That way things like Fly can be negated. Still let them do it as part of an attack, but also let it be a standard action on its own.
I could also see a 'steal buff' power, something that would let you take away someone's Fly or Mage Armor. Maybe as an upgrade of Dispelling Strike?

For Embrace the Void: can you do free actions when it's not your turn? If not, maybe make it a swift action so you can use it in response to someone casting on you. I could also see adding Mettle to the class to give extra against Will saves, although that seems redundant (and really strong) with good saves and Steadfast Determination.

For Spell Void, what about no limit on use? I'm not sure if that makes it too powerful, but most casters function on just a fight or two a day, so no reason to make your guy poor off if he happens to be attacked three times.

To put him more on a caster's level, I could see giving something like a short range teleport (like Dimension Door) and a self-only Fly. That would let him attack flyers, bypass some crowd control spells, and do 'basic stuff' like getting past a big hole in the ground.

I could also see throwing in a Bonus Feat at 5th and 10th level, to help people wanting the other Mage Slayer feats, but maybe that's too much.
This would make it a powerful PrC class compared to other non-casters, but if the goal is to get on par with casters... well, hard to do that without being one, so being relatively overpowered might be the way to go.

BootStrapTommy
2015-08-05, 03:51 PM
One other thing I'd like to point out is this: Everything you are doing, a spellcaster can do, but better or sooner, or more often. This guy might be much better at fighting spellcasters than another mundane character, but a spellcaster that wants to can still outdo you at both melee combat, and anti-caster tactics. The best solution to a spellcaster is still another spellcaster.

However, that isn't even the biggest problem. The biggest problem is that Caster Supremacy isn't about PvP combat. It isn't about casters being impossible for mundanes to kill. It is about the fact that magical solutions to problems are more versatile, more absolute, faster, more consistent, etc. The solution to Caster Supremacy is not about making other classes able to kill casters. It is about making other classes able to be as relevant as casters. That, I think is what ultimately makes this endeavor a little pointless. I'm not so naive as to think that this one class solves the problem of Caster Supremacy. But is does do a lot to address the lack of an at least decent class which fulfills the archetype of "mundane mage hunter".



For Embrace the Void: can you do free actions when it's not your turn? If not, maybe make it a swift action so you can use it in response to someone casting on you. I could also see adding Mettle to the class to give extra against Will saves, although that seems redundant (and really strong) with good saves and Steadfast Determination.
Yes, you can. See Mind over Magic, which is taken directly from the Occult Slayer (for the record so is Embrace the Void, called Blank Thoughts), which functions on this premise. Though theoretically, you only supress the ability once you have it on the off chance that you need to be susceptible to a friendly mind-affecting effect. Though I can't for the life of me think of an example.

Mettle was something I contemplated when I was first designing the class.


For Spell Void, what about no limit on use? I'm not sure if that makes it too powerful, but most casters function on just a fight or two a day, so no reason to make your guy poor off if he happens to be attacked three times. And here is where I have to balance "counter-magic" with "acceptable for a mundane PrC". Otherwise I would. If I get enough feed back that it wouldn't be broken, I will.

Worth noting that with two uses, it is 3000 rounds worth of an improved version of anti-magic field. That's 300 minutes, just over 3 hours.


To put him more on a caster's level, I could see giving something like a short range teleport (like Dimension Door) and a self-only Fly. That would let him attack flyers, bypass some crowd control spells, and do 'basic stuff' like getting past a big hole in the ground.

I could also see throwing in a Bonus Feat at 5th and 10th level, to help people wanting the other Mage Slayer feats, but maybe that's too much.
This would make it a powerful PrC class compared to other non-casters, but if the goal is to get on par with casters... well, hard to do that without being one, so being relatively overpowered might be the way to go. Don't monks get a proxy dimension door? No, I feel like I'm remembering that wrong... Maybe I could use a variation of that. Combined with a Fast Movement feature for closing quickly and range potential on Dispelling Strike, this might address issues with magic mobility.

There are four natural progression feats available between the class' 6th to 15th level time frame. And a fighter can theoretically have at least one of the Pierce feats before they even enter the class.

DarkBunny91
2015-08-05, 04:15 PM
Evasion (Ex): At 5th level, an arcanomancer can avoid magical attacks with great agility. If she makes a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save (such as a fireball or a dragon's breath weapon), she instead takes no damage. A helpless arcanomancer (such as one who is unconscious or paralyzed) does not gain the benefit of evasion.

Isn't it standard procedure that if you would gain Evaison from multiple sources, you gain Improved Evaison instead?

BootStrapTommy
2015-08-05, 04:22 PM
Isn't it standard procedure that if you would gain Evaison from multiple sources, you gain Improved Evaison instead? You're thinking Uncanny Dodge, I believe...

DarkBunny91
2015-08-06, 03:11 PM
Maybe instead at 5th level, an arcanomancer develops the ability to teleport as a swift action like the shadow hand ability except as noted. It must be an unoccupied space and she must have line of sight to the destination. In addition, the arcanomancer can use this ability to piggyback on any magical teleportation of a spellcaster she threatens as an immediate action, travelling to the nearest safe, unoccupied space near the caster's destination.

BootStrapTommy
2015-08-09, 04:58 PM
Added it. Wondering at this point whether the class might need Fly or at least a super jump.

Also wondering if it might be far exceeding the traditional power level of martial classes...