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TheOOB
2007-06-04, 01:47 AM
Arcanist

To put in in the simplest terms possible, an arcanist is one who manipulates the fabric of the universe to cast arcane spells, though the act of actually casting spells is anything but simple. While usually not physically imposing, a skilled arcanist can throw lightning and fire at their opponents, shift across the planes in a blink of an eye, and even alter reality to achieve their goals.

There are as many different kinds of arcanists as there are arcanists themselves. One arcanist might be a skillful enchanter for bends the minds of others using power gained from a latent faerie blood line, and another might be a dangerous elemental mage, learning their trade from a serious of ancient tomes and manuals. Regardless of the source of their power, all arcanists cast their spells through intense study and strong mental focus. Those who are not strong of mind and spirit often find themselves unable to gain significant power as an arcanist.

Purpose: The arcanist class is meant to be a replacement of sorcerer and wizard classes(read: if you allow this class, disallow wizards and sorcerers), and has elements of both. The primary difference between the arcanist and the wizard/sorcerer is that arcanists gain important class abilities throughout their entire career, and while they can still prestige class like normal arcane casters, they will be losing a measure of their arcane power by doing so(primarly additional spells per day and spells known). This combined with MAD (multiple ability dependency), and a careful revision to the sorcerer/wizard spell list (coming at a later date) should help make arcane spell casters more balanced with other class archetypes.

Adventurers: Typically speaking, most arcanists don't adventure, and instead either apply their trade by working for a well paying employer, or by selling spells and magical items freelance. Those who do adventure for all the reasons a wizard or sorcerer would.

Characteristics: Arcanists are powerful arcane spell casters, and fill the same group role that a wizard or sorcerer would. While they share some similarities to wizards, an arcanists method of spellcasting is more similar to that of a sorcerer then a wizard.

Alignment: Arcanists tend to gravitate twords lawful alignments, largely due to the intense training and study required to learn how to cast arcane spells. That said arcanists have no restrictions on alignment, the best and the worst are found among them.

Religion: As a general rule, arcanists are not usually religious, spending more time on their secular magical pursuits then pursuits of faith and spirit. Those arcanists who are religious tend to follow the same gods that a wizard or sorcerer would follow.

Backround: Most arcanists learned their trade for a more experienced arcanist, or as part of an arcane school or guild, however there is no one way to learn arcane magic so arcanists may have any background that would make sense for a wizard or sorcerer.

Races: Arcanists can be found among any intelligent race, though those races who tend to be sorcerers or wizards tend to more oftentimes be found as arcanists.

Other Classes: Due to their weak physical state, and limited amount of spell access, a smart arcanist tends to get along with their other party members, especially the warrior types who use their physical prowess to protect them, and the divine casters who tend to have access to a wider range(if less powerful), of spells then the arcanist has.

Game Rule Information
Arcanists have the following game statistics.
Abilities: Intelligence determines how many spells the arcanist can cast per a day, as well as the most powerful spells the arcanist may cast. Charisma determines how difficult those spells are to resist. Due to the classes poor hp and lack of armor, a high Dexterity and Constitution often help an arcanist to survive.
Alignment: Any
Hit Die: d4
Starting Age: As Sorcerer or As Wizard(players choice)
Starting GP: As Wizard

Class Skills
The arcanist's class skills(and the key ability for each skill) are Concentration(Con), Craft(Int), Decipher Script(Int), Knowledge(All skills taken individually)(Int), Profession(Wis), and Spellcraft(Int)
Skill Points at 1st Level: (2 + Int modifier) x 4
Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 2 + Int modifier

The Arcanist
{table=head]Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special|0lvl|1st|2nd|3rd|4th|5th|6th|7th|8th| 9th

1st|
+0|
+0|
+0|
+2|Arcane Attunment|2|3|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

2nd|
+1|
+0|
+0|
+3|Bonus Spell Slot(1st)|3|3|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

3rd|
+1|
+1|
+1|
+3|Bonus Spell Known(1st)|4|4|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

4th|
+2|
+1|
+1|
+4|Magician|5|5|3|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

5th|
+2|
+1|
+1|
+4|Bonus Spell Slot(2nd), Special Ability|6|5|3|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

6th|
+3|
+2|
+2|
+5|Bonus Spell Known(2nd)|6|5|4|3|-|-|-|-|-|-

7th|
+3|
+2|
+2|
+5|Bonus Spell Slot(3rd)|6|5|5|3|-|-|-|-|-|-

8th|
+4|
+2|
+2|
+6|Bonus Spell Known(3rd)|6|5|5|4|3|-|-|-|-|-

9th|
+4|
+3|
+3|
+6|Bonus Spell Slot(4th)|6|5|5|5|3|-|-|-|-|-

10th|
+5|
+3|
+3|
+7|Bonus Spell Known(4th), Special Ability|6|5|5|5|4|3|-|-|-|-

11th|
+5|
+3|
+3|
+7|Bonus Spell Slot(5th)|6|5|5|5|5|3|-|-|-|-

12th|
+6/+1|
+4|
+4|
+8|Bonus Spell Known(5th)|6|5|5|5|5|4|3|-|-|-

13th|
+6/+1|
+4|
+4|
+8|Bonus Spell Slot(6th)|6|5|5|5|5|5|3|-|-|-

14th|
+7/+2|
+4|
+4|
+9|Bonus Spell Known(6th)|6|5|5|5|5|5|4|3|-|-

15th|
+7/+2|
+5|
+5|
+9|Bonus Spell Slot(7th), Special Ability|6|5|5|5|5|5|5|3|-|-

16th|
+8/+3|
+5|
+5|
+10|Bonus Spell Known(7th)|6|5|5|5|5|5|5|4|3|-

17th|
+8/+3|
+5|
+5|
+10|Bonus Spell Slot(8th)|6|5|5|5|5|5|5|5|3|-

18th|
+9/+4|
+6|
+6|
+11|Bonus Spell Known(8th)|6|5|5|5|5|5|5|5|4|3

19th|
+9/+4|
+6|
+6|
+11|Bonus Spell Slot(9th)|6|5|5|5|5|5|5|5|5|3

20th|
+10/+5|
+6|
+6|
+12|Bonus Spell Known(9th), Special Ability|6|5|5|5|5|5|5|5|5|4[/table]

Arcanist Spells Known
{table=head]Level|0|1st|2nd|3rd|4th|5th|6th|7th|8th|9th
1st|4|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-
2nd|5|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-
3rd|5|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-
4th|6|2|1|-|-|-|-|-|-|-
5th|6|3|2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-
6th|7|3|2|1|-|-|-|-|-|-
7th|7|4|2|2|-|-|-|-|-|-
8th|8|4|2|2|1|-|-|-|-|-
9th|8|4|3|2|2|-|-|-|-|-
10th|9|4|3|2|2|1|-|-|-|-
11th|9|4|4|3|2|2|-|-|-|-
12th|9|4|4|3|2|2|1|-|-|-
13th|9|4|4|3|3|2|2|-|-|-
14th|9|4|4|3|3|2|2|1|-|-
15th|9|4|4|3|3|3|2|2|-|-
16th|9|4|4|3|3|3|2|2|1|-
17th|9|4|4|3|3|3|2|2|2|-
18th|9|4|4|3|3|3|2|2|2|1
19th|9|4|4|3|3|3|2|2|2|2
20th|9|4|4|3|3|3|2|2|2|2[/table]

Class Features
All of the following are class features of the arcanist.
Weapon and Armor Proficieny: Arcanists are proficient with all simple weapons. They are not proficient with any type of armor or shield. Armor of any type interferes with a arcanistís gestures, which can cause his spells with somatic components to fail.

Spells: A arcanist casts arcane spells which are drawn primarily from the sorcerer/wizard spell list. He can cast any spell he knows without preparing it ahead of time, the way a wizard or a cleric must. To learn or cast a spell, a arcanist must have a Intelligence score equal to at least 10 + the spell level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a arcanistís spell is 10 + the spell level + the arcanistís Charisma modifier.
Like other spellcasters, a arcanist can cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day. His base daily spell allotment is given on the table above. In addition, he receives bonus spells per day if he has a high Intelligence score.

A arcanistís selection of spells is extremely limited. A arcanist begins play knowing four 0-level spells and two 1st-level spells of your choice. At each new arcanist level, he gains one or more new spells, as indicated on the table above. (Unlike spells per day, the number of spells a arcanist knows is not affected by his Intelligence score; the numbers on the Spells Known table above are fixed.) These new spells can be common spells chosen from the sorcerer/wizard spell list, or they can be unusual spells that the arcanist has gained some understanding of by study. The arcanist canít use this method of spell acquisition to learn spells at a faster rate, however.
Upon reaching 4th level, and at every even-numbered arcanist level after that (6th, 8th, and so on), an arcanist can choose to learn a new spell in place of one he already knows. In effect, the arcanist "loses" the old spell in exchange for the new one. The new spellís level must be the same as that of the spell being exchanged, and it must be at least two levels lower than the highest-level arcanist spell the arcanist can cast. An arcanist may swap only a single spell at any given level, and must choose whether or not to swap the spell at the same time that he gains new spells known for the level.
Unlike a wizard or a cleric, an arcanist need not prepare his spells in advance. He can cast any spell he knows at any time, assuming he has not yet used up his spells per day for that spell level. He does not have to decide ahead of time which spells heíll cast.

Arcane Attunement(Sp): All arcanists master some of the most basic spells of their craft early in their career. They may use arcane mark, detect magic, light, and read magic as spell-like abilities with a caster level equal to their class level a combined number of times per a day equal to 3 + their Int modifier.

Bonus Spell Slot: At 2nd level the arcanist gains the ability to cast an additional 1st level spell per day. They gain an additional 2nd level spell slot at level 5, 3rd level slot at level 7, 4th level slot at level 9, 5th level slot at level 11, 6th level slot at level 13, 7th level slot at level 15, 8th level slot at level 17, and 9th level slot at level 19.

Bonus Spell Known: At 3rd level the arcanist may choose any 1st level sorcerer/wizard spell and add it to their list of spells known. Once this choice has been made it cannot be changed. They gain an additonal 2nd level spell known at level 6, 3rd level spell known at level 8, 4th level spell known at level 10, 5th level spell known at level 12, 6th level spell known at level 14, 7th level spell known at level 16, 8th level spell known at level 18, and 9th level spell known at level 20.

Magician(Su): Starting at level 4, an arcanist is continueously under the effects of a Prestidigitation with a caster level equal to their class level. They may supress or resume this ability as a free action.

Special Ability: At 5th level an arcanist selects an arcanist special ability from the list below, gaining it's benefits. They gain an additional special ability at 10th level, 15th level, and 20th level Unless otherwise noted in the ability decription, an arcanist may not select a single special ability more then once.

Arcane Toughness: The arcanist gains a +2 bonus on all fortitude saves and gains +1 hp per arcanist level (these bonus hp are gained retroactivly).

Armored Mage: The arcanist gains proficieny with all light armor(but not shields), and recieves no arcane spell failure chance from light armor. An arcanist may select armored mage more then once, if they do they may select either medium armor or shields, gaining proficiency with their choice and ignoring any arcane spell failure that would come from their choice. If this ability is taken a third time it's benefits apply to whatever type of armor the arcanist did not choose the second time they took this ability (either medium armor or shields).

Feat: The arcanist may take a bonus metamagic or item creation feat in place of a special ability. They must meet all prerequisites for the feat.

Metamagic Savant: Upon taking this ability choose a single metamagic feat you know. You can apply the choosen metamagic feat to your arcanist spells with increasing the casting time. This benefit even lets you quicken your arcanist spells with the quicken spell feat. Applying other metamagic feats to your spells increases the casting time as per normal. This ability can be used a number of times per day equal to 3 + your Int modifier. This is an extraordinary ability. You may select this ability more then once, each time it applies to a different metamagic feat.

School Mastery: Upon taking this ability the arcanist selects a single school of magic. They gain the benefits of the spell focus feat for this school of magic. In addition so long as at least one of their spell known for each spell level is from the selected school they gain the benefits of the greater spell focus feat. This ability may be taken multiple times, each time it applies to a different school of magic.

Studious: The arcanist selects any two skills, these skills forever become class skills for the arcanist class. In addition the arcanist gains an additional 2 skills points every level (these skill points are not gained retroactivly). This ability may be taken up to three times, it's effects stack.

Summon Familiar: This special ability functions identical to the sorcerer ability of the same name. If the arcanist allready has this ability from another class, their levels stack for determining the familiars effectiveness.

Warrior Mage: The arcanist gains proficiency with any 4 martial weapons of their choice. Once this choice is made it cannot be changed. In addition the base attack bonus for the arcanist class increases to be equal to a rogues of equal level.

Draken
2007-06-04, 09:12 AM
Arcanist


Purpose: The arcanist class is meant to be a replacement of sorcerer and wizard classes(read: if you allow this class, disallow wizards and sorcerers), and has elements of both.

He lacks a wizard's versatiliity.



Arcane Attunement(Sp): All arcanists master some of the most basic spells of their craft early in their career. They may use arcane mark, detect magic, light, and read magic as spell-like abilities with a caster level equal to their class level a combined number of times per a day equal to 3 + their Int modifier.

This is good, but maybe he should be given a few more uses, or less uses, but separate them.


Bonus Spell Slot: At 2nd level the arcanist gains the ability to cast an additional 1st level spell per day. They gain an additional 2nd level spell slot at level 5, 3rd level slot at level 7, 4th level slot at level 9, 5th level slot at level 11, 6th level slot at level 13, 7th level slot at level 15, 8th level slot at level 17, and 9th level slot at level 19.

I don't get this one, whats the difference of this and progressing your spells/day in the same way (but the normal way, I mean)? :smallconfused:


Bonus Spell Known: At 3rd level the arcanist may choose any 1st level sorcerer/wizard spell and add it to their list of spells known. Once this choice has been made it cannot be changed. They gain an additonal 2nd level spell known at level 6, 3rd level spell known at level 8, 4th level spell known at level 10, 5th level spell known at level 12, 6th level spell known at level 14, 7th level spell known at level 16, 8th level spell known at level 18, and 9th level spell known at level 20.

Same thing as above.


Magician(Sp): Starting at level 4, an arcanist is continueously under the effects of a Prestidigitation with a caster level equal to their class level. They may supress or resume this ability as a free action.

Usefull.


Special Ability: At 5th level an arcanist selects an arcanist special ability from the list below, gaining it's benefits. They gain an additional special ability at 10th level, 15th level, and 20th level Unless otherwise noted in the ability decription, an arcanist may not select a single special ability more then once.

You stole this of the rogues, shame on you. (ok, it's not funny)


Arcane Toughness:[/i] The arcanist gains a +2 bonus on all fortitude saves and gains +1 hp per arcanist level (these bonus hp are gained retroactivly).

Interesting. people who don't use the class could make this into a feat.


Metamagic Savant: Upon taking this ability select a single metamagic feat you know. You no longer have to increase the casting time of spells modified by this metamagic feat as per normal for spontaneous casters. This ability allows the quicken spell feat to function correctly if it is applied to that feat. Spells modified by other metamagic feats have their casting time increased as per normal. You may take this ability more then once, each time it applies to a different metamagic feat.

You just made three Epic feats useless, that can't be balanced.

These are my points.

TheOOB
2007-06-04, 12:00 PM
Lets see here

-The class isn't supposed to have a wizards versitility, arcane casters are too powerful, and this is an attempt to balance them a little. With scrolls and wands this class still can get whatever spells they need.

-Arcane Attunment was ripped straight from the duskblade (though given a more wizard-esq array of spells). The arcanist can still learn and cast those spells if they want more uses, but this way every arcanist starts with a base of spells that they need.

-Bonus Spell Slot/Known are one of the most important balancing feature of the class. The difference is that if you take a prestige class (even one with full casting progression) you still lose some of your magical ability. Caster PrCs are extreamly powerful because you often don't have to give up anything, now you still gain the same power of spells if you PrC, but you don't gain as much of them, meaning you don't always have to PrC.

-Yes the special abilitys are stolen from rogues. Apart from customization value, they give you a little extra incentive to take the class to 20, plus they give the arcanist some abilities they probally want/need but doesn't fit the flavor of all arcanists (such as a familiar)

-Arcane Toughness is acually a combination of two fairly low power feats, great fortitude and improved toughness. It's a nice survivability boost if you want a tough mage, but since mages are so weak physically I don't imagine it being too overpowered.

-I'm rewording metamagic savant to make it closer to the ability it replicates. Basically its a much much weaker version of the sorcerer varient from PHBII, without this ability spontanous casters and metamagic dont mix well.

Fizban
2007-06-05, 06:30 PM
Theres already a feat to get rid of the metamagic casting time for all your spells all the time, prerequisite puts it at 9th level minimum. Complete Mage is the source I think.

You've got a good way of balancing the class so PrC's have a cost, but the problem is now with those that already cost one or more levels of casting. They become even more weak with this class. Players will have to look over what PrC's are available and which ones they like before choosing between this and the sorcerer.

The other special abilities are good, though I'd grant improved familiar considering that it's not that much better. I especially like studious, arcane toughness, and school mastery. Also, arcane attunement and magician are so obvious I can't believe I never thought of them, they'd be good additions to the sorcerer as well.

TheOOB
2007-06-05, 10:27 PM
Well, if this class is allowed, the sorcerer shouldn't be allowed, and neither should the wizard, so choosing shouldn't be that big of a deal anyways.

In any case, PrC that lose caster levels are usually considered worthless anyways. Since this class has a self balancing PrC mechanic you could probally convince your DM to re-add the missing caster levels on some PrCs, and even with this class some PrCs are just too good (initiate of the sevenfold veil I'm looking at you).

Akennedy
2007-06-06, 02:30 PM
Spells: A arcanist casts arcane spells which are drawn primarily from the sorcerer/wizard spell list. He can cast any spell he knows without preparing it ahead of time, the way a wizard or a cleric must.

Um... Do you mean he can cast any spell he knows without preparing it ahead of time, the way a sorcerer or bard must?

Also, the fluff's a little, not fluffy. I think in every one you use the term "like a wizard or sorcerer," just saying it isn't very original.

overall, however, I love it. A few more special abilities would be nice though, however, i have no ideas for special abilities though.

TheOOB
2007-06-07, 06:19 PM
The line is written as it is supposed to be, and it makes perfect gramerical sense. It is pretty much directly copied from the sorcerer spell section, so if it is in error so is the sorcerer.

There isn't really supposed to be fluff. A base class represents abilities, not fluff. An arcanist is one who casts arcane spells, it's up to the player to fill in the details. The references to wizard and sorcerer are this because this class is ment to replace them, and they fill pretty much the same role.

Rad
2007-06-18, 09:41 AM
I think you did a great job and it definitely addresses the aim you had.
Usually the sorcerer is seen as not as powerful as the wizard, and the arcanist sounds like a sorcerer who loses something multiclassing. I would consider giving them 4 skill points since Int is not to be expected as high as for wizards but the fluff requires them to be somewhat learned guys.
Bonus domains could be included in the bonus ability list.

Matthew
2007-06-21, 07:08 PM
I like this idea. I often wonder about Wizard Spells and Spell Books, though. Should Wizards be completely limited in the Spells they can learn, or should they just be limited in the number they can call to mind at any given time? Hard to say. I think this is a pretty good approach, though. I like what you did with Intelligence and Charisma.

TheOOB
2007-06-21, 07:21 PM
I like this idea. I often wonder about Wizard Spells and Spell Books, though. Should Wizards be completely limited in the Spells they can learn, or should they just be limited in the number they can call to mind at any given time? Hard to say. I think this is a pretty good approach, though. I like what you did with Intelligence and Charisma.

Hmm, I was thinking of creating a magic item to keep some of the spellbook flavor, something similar to a scroll, but instead of containing one charge of the spell, it allows you to prepare the spell on it once per day in one of your spell slots, limited to something like 1/2 your caster level in prepared spells a day.

Macrovore
2007-06-21, 09:02 PM
pretty nice class. Kinda like this class that I made a little bit ago. We're both trying to make a better arcane class that solidifies the wizard archetype. Mine uses spell points, though, and has a cool staff-thingy

Matthew
2007-06-22, 07:30 PM
Hmm, I was thinking of creating a magic item to keep some of the spellbook flavor, something similar to a scroll, but instead of containing one charge of the spell, it allows you to prepare the spell on it once per day in one of your spell slots, limited to something like 1/2 your caster level in prepared spells a day.

Yeah, well, this where Caster Classes become more problematic. Just when you think you've addressed all the problems, the effects of Magic Items begin to screw with you. Personally, I wouldn't be inclined to use Spell Books as extra slots, but work them into what you already have. The way I tend to think about it is, who can seriously keep all this complicated stuff in their minds perfectly without some sort of written source?
You may point to people with perfect recall and ancient oral poets, but I think this stuff is beyond them really (plus I don't believe people who claim to have 'perfect' recall, but that's another story...).