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View Full Version : Help me make a ship's cook!



Talya
2008-01-26, 09:02 PM
My level 4 party's new pirate ship needs a cook. It's the cook that was there prior to them "acquiring" the sleek, fast ship.

I want him to be of the goliath race, and a reasonable sailor (as per stormwrack rules.) I don't mind PC levels, but don't make me a combat expert here. I would find it amusing if he used a "large" sized frying pan as a blunt weapon at times, though. My trouble is finding a line between making him too good at combat, and making suck. I think you can't go wrong giving him as many hit points as possible, mind you.

I find seafaring games often need more regular NPCs than standard ones...ships need their crew.

horseboy
2008-01-26, 09:19 PM
(insert obligatory Under Siege Reference)
If you don't want him to be a combat expert you could just go monk. (/insert obligatory Under Siege Reference)

Rigon
2008-01-26, 09:21 PM
my suggestion is:

pirate level 2 (or 4).
i would also add some cooking skills.
aaaaand: we could call him Silver.
this build pretty much worked out in the Treasure Island.

TheThan
2008-01-26, 09:32 PM
You could go with a bard, prestidigitation comes in real handy by making things taste better. You can pick up extra spell and get create food and water, purify food and drink, and eventually hero’s feast (or get some wands). that'll reduce the cost of running the ship. Also mending can come in handy with repairs and the like. plus he can help entertain the crew.

He can help out a little in battles and his healing can take some of the strain off the pc healer (if you have one).

Seffbasilisk
2008-01-26, 10:15 PM
You could go with a bard, prestidigitation comes in real handy by making things taste better. You can pick up extra spell and get create food and water, purify food and drink, and eventually hero’s feast (or get some wands). that'll reduce the cost of running the ship. Also mending can come in handy with repairs and the like. plus he can help entertain the crew.

He can help out a little in battles and his healing can take some of the strain off the pc healer (if you have one).


Additionally, if he's a bard, makes sense for him to sing nonsensical cooking songs...

Talya
2008-01-26, 10:18 PM
You could go with a bard, prestidigitation comes in real handy by making things taste better. You can pick up extra spell and get create food and water, purify food and drink, and eventually hero’s feast (or get some wands). that'll reduce the cost of running the ship. Also mending can come in handy with repairs and the like. plus he can help entertain the crew.

He can help out a little in battles and his healing can take some of the strain off the pc healer (if you have one).

There's an NPC favored soul doing healing duties.

Bard is a good idea, I really like it...but i think I'll pass. My very large party (it's a PbP game) has one pure bard and a swashbuckler/bard (going for dread pirate) already.


Player Characters consist of:

Wizard 4(planning on going into the Stormcaster PrC in stormwrack)
Beguiler 2/Swashbuckler 2 Gish
Rogue 1/Swashbuckler 3 (I forsee Daring Outlaw)
Bard 3/Swashbuckler 1 (planned Dread Pirate)
Fighter 4(he's going the ubercharger route, along with blackguard prc)
OA Samurai 2/Warblade 2
Bard 4(Perhaps going sublime chord)
Ranger 4 (drunken seacliff dwarf)

Collin152
2008-01-26, 10:35 PM
Additionally, if he's a bard, makes sense for him to sing nonsensical cooking songs...

Like the Swedish Chef?

dyslexicfaser
2008-01-26, 10:50 PM
I say, go monk, going into drunken master.

That gives you the skills to wield an improvised weapon frying pan in battle (or anything else you care to do), but gives you some entertining fluff to work with.

Admiral Squish
2008-01-26, 11:31 PM
Like the Swedish Chef?

Except huge and frightening.

Mark Hall
2008-01-26, 11:45 PM
My level 4 party's new pirate ship needs a cook. It's the cook that was there prior to them "acquiring" the sleek, fast ship.

I want him to be of the goliath race, and a reasonable sailor (as per stormwrack rules.) I don't mind PC levels, but don't make me a combat expert here. I would find it amusing if he used a "large" sized frying pan as a blunt weapon at times, though. My trouble is finding a line between making him too good at combat, and making suck. I think you can't go wrong giving him as many hit points as possible, mind you.

I find seafaring games often need more regular NPCs than standard ones...ships need their crew.

Go for a slight variation on Barbarian. Drop the skills Handle Animal and Ride; replace them with Profession and Use Rope. Take ranks in Profession: Chef, as well as a bit in sailory skills like Profession: Sailor, Use Rope, Swim, Climb, and Jump. And Intimidate. He needs Intimidate. You might make him Ape Totem (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/classes/variantCharacterClasses.htm#apeTotemClassFeatures) , just to further differentiate him from land-bound barbarians.

You now have a sea-going barbarian. Your frying pan can use some fairly normal stats (I'd say light mace), and make it out of Cold Iron, just to mess with people.

Collin152
2008-01-26, 11:46 PM
Except huge and frightening.

Ah, so... Swedish chef+Sweetums.

zerombr
2008-01-27, 09:46 AM
I say, go monk, going into drunken master.

That gives you the skills to wield an improvised weapon frying pan in battle (or anything else you care to do), but gives you some entertining fluff to work with.

I am so into that idea, that's seriously the best I've seen, and don't forget to take Skill Emphasis: Craft: Grub.....or not, after all, noone said you had to be good at your job. You could also consider becoming a Master Thrower, such deadly ladles they throw...

SoD
2008-01-27, 10:47 AM
I am so into that idea, that's seriously the best I've seen, and don't forget to take Skill Emphasis: Craft: Grub.....or not, after all, noone said you had to be good at your job. You could also consider becoming a Master Thrower, such deadly ladles they throw...

Skill focus, surely?

And, if you don't mind me asking, why goliath? What in game reason is there for a goliath to be working on a ship (I'm not saying they can't, I'm just saying that it's rather unusual)?

zerombr
2008-01-27, 11:29 AM
Skill focus, surely?

And, if you don't mind me asking, why goliath? What in game reason is there for a goliath to be working on a ship (I'm not saying they can't, I'm just saying that it's rather unusual)?

There's more to it than simply Profession:Slopslinger, right? though I imagine 5 ranks in that Profession gives a synergy bonus to Craft: Gruel, just sounds rather fitting to take the feat of Skill Emphasis

Talya
2008-01-27, 11:43 AM
And, if you don't mind me asking, why goliath? What in game reason is there for a goliath to be working on a ship (I'm not saying they can't, I'm just saying that it's rather unusual)?


The main reason is i'm the DM and I liked the idea. I'll build his history around the fact that he's there...if and when it comes up. Thing is, these are a bunch of scurvy dogs and scabrous swabs. Half the stories they hear or tell are gross exaggerations...or outright fabrications.

SoD
2008-01-27, 01:42 PM
Fair enough. I personally would've made it a Hadozee, but that's just personal preference.

I guess there's nothing stopping a Goliath from cooking.

Goliaths are people too.

playswithfire
2008-01-27, 01:47 PM
chiming in for a Drunken Master cook; Theoretical Build out to ECL 10



Goliath LA
Monk 0 feat[Martial Study(Burning Blade)
cobra strike monk[Dodge]
monk feature[Unarmed Strike]
Monk 1 cobra strike monk[Mobility]
Fighter 2 feat[Sea Legs]
fighter[Great Fortitude]
Fighter 3 fighter[Two Weapon Fighting]
Monk 4
Drunken Master 4 feat[Toothed Blow]
Drunken Master 5
Drunken Master 6
Drunken Master 7 feat[Weapon Focus(improvised weapons)]


Martial Study(Burning Blade) is useful to get tumble as a class skill and works as an easy way to start a cooking fire/represent using a heated frying pan as a weapon.

Benejeseret
2008-01-27, 01:50 PM
I say go Steven Seagal, ships cook, for some unknown reason able to take on an entire fleet of highly organized military men and kick their butts.

Talya
2008-01-27, 03:45 PM
If I wanted to avoid the lawful, monk-feel, but like this idea...how about unarmed swordsage-drunken master?

Mark Hall
2008-01-27, 04:04 PM
If I wanted to avoid the lawful, monk-feel, but like this idea...how about unarmed swordsage-drunken master?

What's wrong with my shipboard barbarian, if that's the case?

Talya
2008-01-27, 05:12 PM
What's wrong with my shipboard barbarian, if that's the case?

I'd have to houserule the profession class skills, but it's good.

I do like the big nasty fists one can get as monk/swordsage types, as well as the improvised weapon idea.
They really need more ways to make unarmed combat good.

wadledo
2008-01-27, 05:44 PM
While you apparently already have a backstory, the monk could be Ex because he helped the previous owners sack his monastery for gold and decided to stick around for the ride after.
Also, flurry of blows make great pancakes.

playswithfire
2008-01-27, 05:47 PM
If I wanted to avoid the lawful, monk-feel, but like this idea...how about unarmed swordsage-drunken master?

You'd have to fudge the requirements of flurry of blows and evasion, but as he's an NPC, that should be ok.

Talya
2008-01-27, 05:54 PM
You'd have to fudge the requirements of flurry of blows and evasion, but as he's an NPC, that should be ok.

Which is weird, as the fluff on the class mentions other classes "only rarely" become drunken masters, and then goes on to talk about some barbarian of the north who became a legendary drunken master.

Ecalsneerg
2008-01-27, 06:04 PM
Which is weird, as the fluff on the class mentions other classes "only rarely" become drunken masters, and then goes on to talk about some barbarian of the north who became a legendary drunken master.

"The legendary Munchkin George, Barbarian Drunken Master, who fooled his DM through the cunning use of Tipp-Ex..."

playswithfire
2008-01-27, 06:29 PM
Which is weird, as the fluff on the class mentions other classes "only rarely" become drunken masters, and then goes on to talk about some barbarian of the north who became a legendary drunken master.

Guess he was an ex-monk? Or a homebrewed-variant. Trade rage for flurry and uncanny dodge for evasion? All I know is what's written.

Kioran
2008-01-27, 06:38 PM
The best skill-monkeys (apart from Factotums, but they wouldn´t fit) would be....UA Feat Rogues. They have the Rogue´s skill points, and enough Feats so they can burn some on Skill Focus etc. without absolutely hitting zero. Works good at low lvls, and later on you can PrC out, depending on the kind of Focus you want.
Since the character´s class skill list emcompasses almost any skill available, you can give him a generous dash of them, for seasoning. Add some tasty Feats that make him fight unconventional, and a little effective.

Works out all right. I´ve built a Maidservant/Battle butler Feat Rogue as an undercover Royal guard NPC - she can hold her own with a short-sword(AB +6, sadly only 1d6 damage, but an AC of 18, which is nothing to sneeze at for a CR 2/ECL 3, and some okay-ish 12 HP), and makes a very good omelette (Craft: cooking +11 at ECL 3). She also has some disguise and Sense Motive going on........
Same with the cook. Maybe dip a lvl Barb for speed, martial weapon prof and, most importantly, qualifying for Improved Toughness, and you can have a Chef with an interesting, wide selection of skills and moderate combat prowess.........

Prometheus
2008-01-27, 08:26 PM
I like the bard idea, because of the aforementioned food spells but instead of singing just make him a variant bard that makes special food instead of songs.
Con: The cook must take a while to cook his food, deploy it to his allies and have them eat it.
Pro: The cook's food doesn't have to be where he is, within a certain range, or used immediately. The only limitation is its (magical) despoilage.
Balancer: He's an NPC anyway.

A bard would give him enough skill points to be a successful crewmember and the kind dexterity typical of your average wayfaring scallywag. OF course, I don't know if a Goliath optimizes with bards, but he's an npc.

Talya
2008-01-27, 08:31 PM
OF course, I don't know if a Goliath optimizes with bards, but he's an npc.

There's actually a goliath specific bard PrC...but ....like I said, I have an abundance of bards on my ship.