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  1. - Top - End - #211
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    RedWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Dammit. I thought I had more time, but between leaving work 2 hours late, and delivering something a half-hour's drive off, I'm really cutting it close.

  2. - Top - End - #212
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    Draz74's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Deadline's technically passed. Are you going to wait for Arbitrarity, Pinny? More importantly, when do I get to see my competition unveiled?
    You can call me Draz.
    Trophies:
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    Also of note:

    Work on my homebrew system, CRE8, is still marching slowly onwards. I think I can see the light at the end of the tunnel -- an Alpha release -- in the distance now. Read my Design Goals here.

  3. - Top - End - #213
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    RedWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    I got it in by 9 (ON THE DOT). It was close, and I'd have preferred to get more items in my statted out builds, since it artificially deflates visible power, but that's fine. I'm confident.
    Last edited by Arbitrarity; 2010-07-23 at 08:29 PM.

  4. - Top - End - #214
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    Private-Prinny's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    And now for the Big Reveal! Good luck to all of our contestants.

    Please do not post until I am done.
    Quotebox
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Moron View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Optimystik View Post
    'Adding up numbers' is completely independent of roleplay. What you're saying makes as much sense as "peeling a banana is not a good way to drive."


  5. - Top - End - #215
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    Private-Prinny's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    I'm sorry... Who?

    Quote Originally Posted by The Forgotten
    Name: The Forgotten
    Race: Hellbred (Spirit)
    Alignment: Lawful Good

    {table=head]Class | Str | Dex | Con | Int | Wis | Cha | BAB | Base Fort | Base Ref | Base Will | Feats | Class Features | Skills
    Wilder | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 20 | 0 | 0 | 0 | 2 | Power Attack, Devil's Favour | Wild Surge +1, Psychic Enervation | Concentration 4 Knowledge (Psionics) 4 Craft (Alchemy) 4 Jump 4 Intimidate 4
    Paladin | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 20 | 1 | 2 | 0 | 2 | | Aura of Good, Detect Evil, Smite Evil 1/day | Concentration 5 Knowledge (Psionics) 4 Craft (Alchemy) 5 Jump 5 Intimidate 4
    Wilder | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 20 | 2 | 2 | 0 | 3 | Leap Attack | Elude Touch | Concentration 6 Knowledge (Psionics) 5 Craft (Alchemy) 6 Jump 6 Intimidate 5
    Wilder | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 21 | 3 | 3 | 1 | 3 | | Wild Surge +2 | Concentration 7 Knowledge (Psionics) 6 Craft (Alchemy) 7 Jump 7 Intimidate 6
    Wilder | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 21 | 4 | 3 | 1 | 4 | | Surging Euphoria +1 | Concentration 8 Knowledge (Psionics) 7 Craft (Alchemy) 8 Jump 8 Intimidate 7
    Cryokineticist | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 21 | 4 | 5 | 3 | 4 | Ordered Chaos | Glacial Ray | Knowledge (Psionics) 8 Jump 9 Intimidate 8
    Pyrokineticist | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 21 | 4 | 7 | 5 | 4 | | Fire Lash | Knowledge (Psionics) 9 Jump 10 Intimidate 9
    Pyrokineticist | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 22 | 5 | 8 | 6 | 4 | | Fire Adaptation, Hand Afire | Knowledge (Psionics) 10 Jump 11 Intimidate 10
    Cryokineticist | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 22 | 6 | 9 | 7 | 4 | Improved Bull Rush | Cold Adaptation, Frozen Fist | Knowledge (Psionics) 11 Jump 12 Intimidate 11
    Pyrokineticist | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 22 | 7 | 9 | 7 | 5 | | Bolt of Fire | Knowledge (Psionics) 12 Jump 13 Intimidate 12
    Pyrokineticist | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 22 | 8 | 10 | 8 | 5 | | Weapon Afire | Knowledge (Psionics) 13 Jump 14 Intimidate 13
    Cryokineticist | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 23 | 9 | 10 | 8 | 6 | Shock Trooper | Bolt of Cold | Knowledge (Psionics) 14 Jump 15 Intimidate 14
    Pyrokineticist | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 23 | 10 | 10 | 8 | 6 | | Nimbus | Knowledge (Psionics) 15 Jump 16 Intimidate 15
    Pyrokineticist | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 23 | 11 | 11 | 9 | 7 | | Firewalk | Knowledge (Psionics) 16 Jump 17 Intimidate 16
    Cryokineticist | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 23 | 12 | 12 | 10 | 7 | Devil's Aura | Weapon Afrost | Knowledge (Psionics) 17 Jump 18 Intimidate 17
    Pyrokineticist | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 24 | 13 | 12 | 10 | 7 | | Fear No Fire | Knowledge (Psionics) 18 Jump 19 Intimidate 18
    Pyrokineticist | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 24 | 14 | 13 | 11 | 7 | | Greater Weapon Afire | Knowledge (Psionics) 19 Jump 20 Intimidate 19
    Pyrokineticist | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 24 | 14 | 13 | 11 | 8 | Ability Focus (Heat Death) | Heat Death | Knowledge (Psionics) 20 Jump 21 Intimidate 20
    Pyrokineticist | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 24 | 15 | 14 | 12 | 8 | | Conflagration | Knowledge (Psionics) 21 Jump 22 Intimidate 21
    Paladin | 14 | 10 | 10 | 12 | 8 | 25 | 16 | 15 | 12 | 8 | | Divine Grace, Lay on Hands | Knowledge (Psionics) 22 Jump 23 Intimidate 21[/table]

    Back-story:
    Levels 1 - 5
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    Born again, The Forgotten sword to never let a chance to do good pass by, and by sheer force of will, manipulated the world around him. Taking up arms and armour, laying around him with brutal blows, The Forgotten became a warrior of the people striving to protect them from anything which threatened. His focus was renowned, his wrath terrible, all the while his eyes glowing red


    Level 6 - 19
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    In touch with himself, The Forgotten drew power from the Frozen Hells and the Boiling Abyss, his inherent contradictory nature of good and evil expanding to law and chaos, hot and cold. Attuning himself to these opposing factors, The Forgotten forges himself into a force of true power, shielding with the strong and striking where they are weak, travelling the world writing wrongs where ever he found them. Much time was spent in the frozen north where few could survive for long, the rest deep in the deserts scorching sun boiling water from the very flesh. From the darkest and deepest underdark The Forgotten wandered seeing through the deepest darkness, finding the light and truth, fostering it and bringing peace and freedom to those downtrodden and enslaved


    Level 20
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    Finally at peace with himself, The Forgotten gains divine grace and is willing to die, knowing he has done his best to atone for his previous life. Continuing to walk the world using all four alignments to further the course of good, his blade of balance defies logic legends grow it, surpassing those of himself


    The Fun Stuff
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    So we have a character that can wield the Concordant Greatsword. Well if the Concordant Killer (MM4) could ever let go of it. So we'll just have to go with a +1 Holy Unholy Anarchic Axiomatic greatsword. Then apply Weapon Afrost and Greater Weapon Afire to it, for +4d6 fire and +1d6 cold. Combined with Shock Trooper Power Attack, we got ourselves a decent amount of damage.
    Course that is the end result. Before then is your standard shock trooper build, power attacking with a greatsword, or other two handed weapon of your choice.
    Alternatively, use of Devil's Aura for minor crowd control, or Heat Death to make something just die.
    At low levels, can even play as a Wilder, using Psionic powers. Sure one is chosen as it is required for Cryokineticist, but the others are free to be whatever floats your boat, so 'till level 6, viable tactic.
    A rather serious weakness is the low will save, starts of strong but doesn't grow much until level 20, at which point saves aren't a problem any more.
    Oh and he is unaffected by three of the word series, only affected by Blasphemy.

    Just a mid range shock trooper build with some oddities


    Sources:
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    Players Handbook
    Expanded Psionics Handbook
    Frostburn
    Fiendish Codex 1: Hordes of the Abyss
    Fiendish Codex 2: Tyrants of the Nine Hells
    Complete Warrior
    Monster Manual
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Moron View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Optimystik View Post
    'Adding up numbers' is completely independent of roleplay. What you're saying makes as much sense as "peeling a banana is not a good way to drive."


  6. - Top - End - #216
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    Private-Prinny's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    His skin may be tough, but his soul is on fire.
    Quote Originally Posted by Varholm Grimhide
    Varholm Grimhide
    Beasthide Shifter Warblade 4/Warshaper 2/Pyrokineticist 4/Kensai 4/Pyrokineticist +6

    Quick breakdown of build:
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    Initial Stats (32pb)
    STR 16 +3
    DEX 14 +2
    CON 12 +1
    INT 12 +1
    WIS 10 =0
    CHA 12 +1

    Feats
    1| Hidden Talent (Offensive Prescience), Improved Unarmed Strike, Weapon Focus (Unarmed Strike)
    3| Superior Unarmed Strike
    6| Ordered Chaos
    9| Combat Expertise
    12| Brutal Throw
    15| Vestigial Wings
    18| Beasthide Elite
    Flaws | Weak Will, Unreactive
    Traits| Detached, Honest

    Stat Increases
    4| Int+1
    6| Str+4, Con+4
    8| Str+1
    12| Str+1
    16| Str+1
    20| Str+1

    Skill points
    1| Concentration 4, Knowledge (Psionics) 2, Diplomacy 4, Ride 2, Jump 4
    2| Concentration 1, Ride 0.5, Jump 1, Craft (Alchemy) 1, Diplomacy 1
    3-4| Concentration 1, Ride 0.5, Jump 1, Intimidate 2
    5-7| Concentration 1, Ride 0.5, Jump 1
    8-10| Concentration 1, Jump 1, Intimidate 1
    11-14| Concentration 1, Jump 1, Intimidate 1, Tumble 1
    15-20| Concentration 1, Jump 1, Intimidate 1

    Maneuvers
    1| Wolf Fang Strike, Steel Wind, Charging Minotaur. Stance: Hunter's Sense
    2| Leading the Attack
    3| Battle Leader's Charge
    4| Claw at the Moon, Leading the Attack>Rabid Wolf Strike. Stance: Punishing Stance

    Sources
    - Core+UA (Brutal Throw is in MM5)
    - ECS (Shifter, Beasthide Elite)
    - ToB (Warblade, Superior Unarmed Strike)
    - CW (Warshaper, Kensai)
    - XPH (Pyro, Hidden Talent, Teleporting weapon enchance)
    - FCI (Ordered Chaos, Vestigial Wings)

    Final Top Stats (without equipment, with buffs)
    HP 3d12+12d8+4d10+42 (avg 137) +bonus from shifting
    AC (while shifting) 15
    STR 32 +11
    BAB +15
    Attack Unarmed +28 (7d6+12) (+2d6 from various maneuvers).
    Concentration +25
    Jump +37


    Level by level breakdown.

    Level 1
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    Warblade 1 - Weak-willed and Unreactive, Detached and Honest, IUS, WF(US), and Hidden Talent.
    Varholm was always a little different. Many of his brothers and sisters had much longer claws, much stronger teeth. His main advantage was his toughhide, but this didn't win him many fights. In the end, he learnt to fight with his fists, despite their lack of a claws, even in wild form. Mostly to avoid being bullied. Being called the runt. Sometimes, this all seemed to well up in him, a surge of emotions, and then, at those times, he knew exactly how to act, how to twist the shoulder of his opponent to floor him, even as if he'd already done it. These were the only fights he won.


    Level 2
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    Warblade 2
    Having grown up a little bit, Varholm goes to study with the tribe's Medicine Man, who more or less becomes his Mentor, teaching him how to talk his way out of fights, as well as picking up a little alchemy.


    Levels 3 and 4
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    Warblade 3 and 4 - Superior Unarmed Strike
    Despite working with his mentor, Varholm never managed to quiet down the wild and aggressive spirit natural to his kind, and he continues to work hard to overcome the weakness of his flesh, and, because of his role with the Medicine Man, is come to be trusted by the tribe elders, who choose him to lead small raids or hunting parties.

    Warblade maneuvers, although ToB overused I know, really just help pump the edge here, and are useful throughout the build. Hunter's Sense is the primary stance, since Scent is somewhat useful and very flavourful for this character.


    Level 5 and 6
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    Warshaper 1 and 2 - Ordered Chaos
    It is on one of these missions, while shifting, that Varholm feels a change within him. It's almost like his meditation has had a much greater impact on him than he could ever have imagined; complete control over his body. This gives him the ability to grow what he always though he wanted; claws, horns, teeth. Not sure what this means, he leaves his tribe on a quest to find out more, sure that his newfound resilience will mean he comes to no harm.

    The warshaper pump to STR and CON is very nice for Varholm, gives him a strong edge for his level (given I've done this without equipment), and increases both his shifting, hit points, and concentration, which will turn out to be very useful later. At this point, natural Morphic Weapons still deal more damage than his unarmed attacks, and so he should be using them.


    Levels 7-10
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    Pyrokineticist 1-4 - Combat Expertise
    A couple of winters after leaving the tribe, while sitting freezing in a cave, trying to meditate, Varholm has a peculiar vision, of himself, with his hands on fire. After a couple of attempts, he realises he can in fact throw a long whip of fire from his hands, although he struggles to maintain his lawful state of meditation to do so; this act seems to be inherently chaotic. Nevertheless, he learns to use this power of fire over the next year, as well as developing an expertise of combat due to having to survive on his own.

    These Pyro levels are primarily useful for giving Varholm some ranged attacks, something he previously lacked and could do with at this point. I think it's been stated in the thread you need Weapon Afire for Unarmed Strikes, but to be honest he's still probably better off using Hand Afire until he gets Weapon Afire, since his normal unarmed damage is only 1d8 there.


    Levels 11-14
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    Kensai 1-4 - Brutal Throw
    Living out in the wilderness was fine for a while, but Varholm realises it isn't doing much for his 'quest'. That night he pledges a Oath. He prays to his spirit ancestors, and with them as witnesses, he avows never to rest until he learns the source of his now prodigious power of mind over the physical world. These spirits grant him an amazing ability in return. It seems, now that merely by thinking it, Varholm can punch something that is far away from him, transporting his body temporarily there, and then back again to where his mind still rests. He also continues to learn the power of fire, using it frequently in fights against the monsters of the wilderness.

    Over the course of Kensai, Varholm develops his fists into +1 Throwing Teleporting Flaming weapons. I realise I'm not the first to do the whole Rayman, thowing-your-fists thing, and a DM might easily look unfavourably given the precise nature of the cheese, but hopefully the fluff above shows there's at least a minor blag possible...


    Levels 15-20
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    Pyrokineticist 5-10 - Vestigial Wings, Beasthide Elite
    One night, while shifting back to humanshape, Varholm feels an itch. Reaching back over his shoulders to scratch it, he is greatly startled to feel a pair of wings there, batlike, hanging loose and downwards. "Maybe this is a clue to my peculiar heritage?" he thinks, and trains himself to use them, and although he can't quite learn to fly just yet, they certainly aid his particular style of combat, involving a lot of jumping around.

    Growing close to a middle-aged man now, Varholm decides to visit a city. This is where, after a fair bit of research, he learns of people like himself, and after a couple of long conversations with wizards at the arcane university, he comes to the conclusion that is a descendant of a fiendish or abyssal heritage. Horrified, he turns from the path he laid out for himself, forsaking the abilities the spirits granted him, and returns to his tribal village, begging to be dealt with as befits such a monstrosity.

    In the search for them, on the way, his attempts at flight finally become frutiful, although not for very long at all, and certainly not more than once a day, the amount it takes out of him. Nevertheless, useful for ascending cliffs and the like, and eventually his finds his people again.

    His mentor, now an old man, begs him to reconsider; his experience has made him a much stronger fighter than any in the village, he could lead them when the current alpha dies. After much deliberation, Varholm makes his decision. Going to his mentor, he asks him to intercede on his behalf with the spirits, and he pledges a new Oath. To protect the people of his tribe without prejudice or arrogance. He decided never to lead the tribe, rather, be there whenever they come under threat, and indeed he does. By training young shifters he even gains a better understanding of hsi own shifting powers.

    The spirits grant him full Atonement, and set him on a new task, walking the path of flame; rather than simply wielding it, he begins to learn to incite it in others, which leads him to wonder whether the power of fire came from his infernal heritage or not...?


    The end of the build. The last two levels are mostly just class-ending fluff-filler, although they are hefty effects for dealing with crowds (Conflagration) and targets immune to fire damage (Heat Death), which he otherwise deals a paltry 2d6+X to.


    Sweet Spot Level 18
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    At this level, Varholm has just returned to the village and Atoned for his break of Oath.

    Tactically, this is the point where his full damage comes online, the last two levels really are just flavourful filler to max out Pyro. With Greater Weapon Afire fists that are also flaming and maxed Superior Unarmed Strike, that's 7d6+X damage, where X can be increased by 4 with Power Surge, and although that be used only twice a day, his Concentration is high enough to maintain it a fair while.

    Defensively, shifting grants him a lot of temporary hit points, and a fair chunk of natural armour, which is handy given his comparatively low dex. If he's getting low on hp, Combat Expertise comes into play.

    Ranged-wise, Bolt of Fire is now an 8d6 weapon, nearly topping his thrown fists, an giving him a reliable source of damage beyond the range he can generally expect to hit things in person.

    Out of combat, Ki Projection, a lot of ranks of Intimidate, a fair few in diplomacy, and the charisma bonus he get for being on fire will make him an acceptable conversationalist, nowhere near party face, but not incompetent if that situation comes up.


    Sweet Spot Level 13
    Spoiler
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    Here, Varholm is in the middle of his 'Quest', his Kensai levels, and here is where the fist-throwing routine really comes alive, with (at this point) +1 Throwing Teleporting fists (Teleporting is just PsiReturning), and a third iterative attack (BAB+11 at this level), at 2d6+d10+X damage, which can be pumped with Claw at the Moon (which is a very hand 2d6 extra damage). Brutal Throw is also gained at level 12, making Power Surge and his much higher Str than Dex really worthwhile. Before this level, he's usually better just punching people in close combat.


    Showcase Level 10
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    I realise I'm kind of doing these in reverse order. Here, Varholm has a fair amount of Pyrokineticist experience, but as yet still only has 'mundane' hands, albeit ones that are on fire and deal 2d6+1d8+X damage. Again, maneuvers are still very important for the character at this point, although he has just learnt Combat Expertise, which, in combination with his AC from Beasthide shifting, gives him a slightly better defense, although AC is still a weak point. He has access to 4d6 Bolt of Fire now, for when ranged is necessary, filling a useful hole.


    Overview, and equipment
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    I haven't included equipment with this build, mostly because offensively, his main equipment is attached to him, and the fluff is kinda wildernessey, so it didn't make too much sense. Plus there's always the issue with many DMs in that they (perhaps rightfully) think WBL is too high, and it's just true that in many many campaigns you aren't given access to the level and number of high-powered magic/psionic items that you might like.

    However, one thing this guy could really do with is a suit of armour, to put that poor AC up; at each level, probably the best he can afford that doesn't grant him too high an AC penalty (for jump checks). None of his classes restrict armour use, and he has all proficiencies theoretically, so he can probably wear full-plate once his jump maneuvers become less usefull (or just absorb the penalty... at levels 15+ a -6 or -7 isn't too much.

    Obvious other magic items are stuff like STR+ items, CON+ items, NA+ items.

    Overview
    Throughout this build, Varholm is a damage-dealer. I used ToB to get some damage-dealing maneuvers, and deliberately ignored the two-levels-of-monk dip, because I liked the idea of attempting an unarmed fighter without it. And plus, this way, no multiclassing penalties! I'm taking enough xp drain from Kensai that under some interpretations I wouldn't hit lvl20, multiclassing penalties as well would hurt.

    Unfortunately I had to take flaws to meet the requirements of the PrCs while still taking stuff I wanted. Ordered Chaos is purely a qualification feat, as is Weapon Focus, and Hidden Talent really. Combat Expertise is obviously taken in order to qualify for Kensai, but actually really helps out, as does Hidden Talent to some extent. Without flaws, he'd probably have to drop Superior Unarmed Strike until much later, creating a bit of a power vacuum in the middle, and would probably end up not taking Beasthide Elite or Vestigial Wings, they're probably the most irrelecant ones there. (Vestigial Wings, by the way, is a reference to Rayman's helicopter hair, if you didn't get that; just a bit of fun there )

    Like has been stated before, the main drawback of this character is AC; hopefully high hit points and party support can overcome that, in a campaign sense, plus, you know, even something like mundane Studded Leather is a significant improvement :P

    My initial thoughts in designing this were obviously to make use of the Weapon Afire in combination with unarmed attacks, and thus in combination with kensai's possibilitiy of making your hands magical. Reading Power Surge interested me enough to aim for a character with massive top-end strength, which lead me to Warshaper, and then to Shifter as an LA0 qualifier for that.

    I've tried to keep the book count fairly low on this one; Core+XPH obviously was required, and I decided fairly early on I wanted to use stuff from CW. I chose to use Ordered Chaos from Fiendish Codex I rather than ask the judges to accept alignment-fudging cheese (the whole atonement thing in the fluff is entirely that; fluff. Buildwise, it's not necessary.), which added that book, and in the end I had to give in and use flaws (UA), and Tome of Battle was pretty necessary for Superior Unarmed Strike, allowing a high damage output unarmed strike without Monk. Warblade is really there because since I was using ToB anyway, I might as well use the powerful base class; this could be something duller, like fighter or ranger. Eberron I obviously had to use for Shifters.


    So yeah, thanks for looking at this build! Sorry I haven't presented a MM-style statblock at any point, I have just run out of time.
    Quotebox
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Moron View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Optimystik View Post
    'Adding up numbers' is completely independent of roleplay. What you're saying makes as much sense as "peeling a banana is not a good way to drive."


  7. - Top - End - #217
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Private-Prinny's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Flame on? Or just not off?
    Quote Originally Posted by Tummo
    Tummo of the Three Candles

    Synad Half-Fiend (Cerebrillith) 4, Bard 1, Soulknife 5, Pyrokineticist 10

    Before you stands a creature who some might call fierce beauty. It is not in the body, though it is lithely muscular to an astonishing degree, like flexed cushions of brown leather. It is over seven feet in height, with claws that protrude from supple-fingered hands.

    It is not in the handsome face, which is mostly as a man's, with glinting black eyes, and a pronounced, over-bitten jaw of viper teeth. Irregular patches of cranial skin seem to have been cut away revealing an opaque crystalline skull. These patches glow and flicker or pulse like a candle seen through a frosted window, as if the skull were but a housing lantern for the flame. Knobs of bone also stud it and then flow down in and overdeveloped spine that keeps him forever in an alert crouch. In the darkest shadows the faintest, most ghostly visages seems to take form from the light shining from within. One is a horrible countenance all calculating hatred and the other a gentle woman's with shining eyes that spark with alertness and life.

    Nor is it quite in it's presence, which is both commanding and defiant. This is a man, in all sense of the word, but one that bows before none, tolerates no master, and wishes no servant. A man who finds grace within, and will be He until the day he dies.

    It is a combination of all, a blending of pain and peace, warmth and burning. A flame in man form.



    The Epic
    Spoiler
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    I
    Hear the woe of Tummo
    Child of hell's inner fire and
    Bitterborn of the Three Candles
    Come was he, from a mother of three
    Sides to every speech.
    She came from afar did this rare blossom
    Where beasts of the mind held full sway
    She stepped through a twist, a hole of dark mist
    To visit our chill mountain passes.
    She wandered the slopes, peering into shadows
    Traveling as was her wont
    Out of a deep cave, she became a low slave
    To a demon, horrible and wise
    He spoke with this trio of voices
    That debated every move
    He was intrigued, and somewhat fatigued
    By the way that she minded all thrice.
    He gazed into a crystal that hung
    And saw what might could be made
    Born was a triplet, though only one in it
    Both foul fiend and ravaged lady.
    His intentions were to open the womb
    Like veal emerged for the slaughter
    But with a plan levels deep
    She stole away while still large
    With this progeny of the abyss
    Did this resourceful aberrant daughter
    She gave birth in the snow while
    the storm howled and blew forth like
    The ire of her rapist husband
    For years they kept low, always on the move
    The mother taught kindness to the
    Foul kid. Though its origins vile
    And the act enough to raise bile
    A sweetling was what did emerge
    He sung with the howls of the wind
    And when the rage threatened to bend
    This kindness into a steel rod
    She would show him a dance which to prance
    That would channel away all the fuel
    To something beautiful and bright
    In the snow he whirled for his mother
    lifted in song. He could do little wrong.
    This did not last, as from out of the past
    Came the eyes of the terrible fiend.
    The mother he broke with an offhanded
    Blow and winced as fang tore into
    Its hide. The youngling son, now long
    in tooth and strong in hide was still
    to weak for vengeance to seek against
    This dark minded hellion lord.

    II
    For winters child was both son and beast
    Gazed on for sport, of a demonic sort
    Demon tried to learn all its deep secrets.
    Taught what the Hellfather would want
    Then with a callous, backhanded blow
    He would beat and slice it deep
    But within this fair child was pride
    Of a sort that few have seen
    Though all that he knew was cold
    A fire burned within that soul
    He saw things once and he saw them
    Twice but third time was the charm
    All were himself, but also were three
    He was He, who listened to them
    Taking wisdom from each and all
    One spoke of bravery and was
    The center of calm in the storm.
    He called it the Warming Hand.
    But one that blazed and wished to lay
    Waste he called it the Burning One.
    No matter the words, or pain brought
    To bear from this fiend in form,
    and thought. He would be He
    Even through He was Three
    A CAPTIVE IN MIND HE WAS NOT!

    III
    Cut and heal, divide and test
    Did that horror of the abyss
    But the young one did not
    Even give it a thought but
    Distracted himself from the pain
    Though never heard was a sound
    He sung in a three voice refrain
    One night he found strength beyond
    All before, enough to rebel and flee
    It followed him quick, though not
    As fleet on the slick of the ice
    That coated the steep mounts.
    Into our country he came from the
    deepest of deep the wild ranges
    that no man would willingly roam.
    Though power had he, even demons
    Will not take on a whole town.
    The child he hid, only coming out
    of the shadows to fetch bread and
    meat. He befriended a few of the
    young woman who, saw the handsome
    yet strange boy that appeared in
    the night with a hood showing only
    a face, a fearfully comely face.
    He haunted the town, taking with
    Force what would not be willingly
    given. They sent guardsman out to
    run him and clout their clubs over
    his head. But so stout was the skull
    With knobs and bright holes,
    That he sent them running in fright.
    For several years he was the source of
    their fears, but that all changed
    one fateful and silent night.

    Level 5
    Spoiler
    Show

    Synad Half-Fiend Bard 1

    Medium Outsider (psionic)
    Hit Dice: 1d6+5 (8 hp)
    Initiative: +0
    Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)
    Armor Class: 14 (+4 natural), touch, flat-footed
    Base Attack/Grapple: +0/+4
    Attack: Claw +4 melee (1d4+4)
    Full Attack: 2 claws +4 melee (1d4+4) and bite -1 melee (1d6+2)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: Bardic music, countersong, fascinate, psi-like abilities, spells
    Special Qualities: Bardic knowledge, collective, damage reduction 5/good, darkvision 60 ft., immunity to poison, inspire courage +1, multitask, naturally psionic (+3 pp), oracle, power resistance 10, resistance to acid 10, cold 10, electricity 10, and fire 10, threefold mind
    Saves: Fort +5, Ref +2, Will +10
    Abilities Str 18, Dex 10, Con 20, Int 10, Wis 10, Cha 22
    Skills: Concentration +9, Intimidate +10, Jump +8, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +1, Perform (dance) +10, Perform (sing) +7, Tumble +4
    Feats: Force of Personality
    Challenge Rating: 2
    Possessions:
    Alignment: Chaotic Neutral
    Advancement: By character level
    Level Adjustment: +4

    Bard Spells: Caster level 1st. (Spells per day: (2); Save DC 16 + spell level)
    0 - Dancing Lights, Flare, Know Direction, Mage Hand

    Psi-like Abilities: Manifester level 1st. Save DCs are Charisma-based.
    3/day - Ego Whip (1d4, DC 18)

    Smite Good (Su): Once per day Tummo can make a normal melee attack to deal 1 extra damage against a good foe.



    IV
    Warriors studied of combat's way
    That was nothing short of sublime
    Came down from the far frozen slopes
    Stolen away was that demon kin
    And all thought he we destroyed.
    But though he howled and clawed at the
    Prison chambers of the Nine Swords
    They did harm in no way nor act
    And food and drink were not lacked.
    Until came a time, where for no reason
    Or rhyme, the food refused to be brought
    He grew even fiercer inside of that cell
    When a young boy was shoved in as well.
    Though another week passed and hunger
    Swelled hard in the belly of hell's spawn
    He refused to give in, and chomp
    On the child they had in sadistic intent
    Given him to feast and feed.
    Instead he held out, til life was in doubt
    The child then stood, though young in look
    Was a man of incredible age and thought
    This had been a test, to see if molest
    Would this part-demon do for repast.

    V
    Too turned up inside, and filled with pride
    To master the way of the Sublime.
    They taught him to focus the hate and the fear
    Of his yesteryears and the inherited blood
    Of that land of the dead and damned.
    Though empty was hand and its sharp claw
    What he came to saw was a blade made of pain
    It was no longer inside, but out.
    The edge of the soul in a knife made whole
    Was what saved his life for a time.
    What the Burning had burnt was soothed
    of its hurt by the Warming Hand of his mind(s).
    He learned the middle ground of love and war
    Balancing the three of his kind.
    Together they agreed and began to proceed
    To make a man out of this uncut gem.

    VI
    For quite a long while, he could now smile
    And be the being he wished to be.
    When he was content, three flames would flick
    In the dark, one one each side.
    But the brightest of all was the one in the
    middle where two flame strengthened the One.
    Tummo they named him in small ceremony
    The one of the stoked inner fire
    But instead of the burn, he now had learned
    A balance to inferno and warmth
    He would light a candle for each side he
    Tamed from day to day
    Tummo Three-Candle, an appropriate handle
    Was what they would now always say.

    Level 10
    Spoiler
    Show

    Synad Half-Fiend Bard 1, Soulknife 5

    Medium Outsider (psionic)
    Hit Dice: 1d6+5 + 5d10+25 (60 hp)
    Initiative: +0
    Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)
    Armor Class: 22 (+7 armor, +4 natural, +1 monk's belt), touch 11, flat-footed 21
    Base Attack/Grapple: +3/+7
    Attack: +1 Soulknife +9 (+17 wardance) melee (1d8+5) or Claw +7 (+15 wardance) melee (1d8+4)
    Full Attack: +1 Soulknife +9 (+17 wardance) melee (1d8+5) and claw +2 (+10 wardance) melee (1d8+4) and bite +2 (+10 wardance) melee (1d6+2) or 2 claws +7 (+15 wardance) melee (1d8+4) and bite +2 (+10 wardance) melee (1d8+2)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: Bardic music, countersong, fascinate, free draw, mind blade, psi-like abilities, psychic strike +1d8, shape mindblade, spells, spell-like abilities, throw mind blade
    Special Qualities: Bardic knowledge, collective, damage reduction 5/good, darkvision 60 ft., immunity to poison, inspire courage +1, multitask, naturally psionic (+4 pp), oracle, power resistance 10, resistance to acid 10, cold 10, electricity 10, and fire 10, threefold mind
    Saves: Fort +10, Ref +10, Will +18
    Abilities Str 18, Dex 10, Con 20, Int 10, Wis 10, Cha 27
    Skills: Concentration +13, Craft (alchemy) +1, Intimidate +16, Jump +11, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +14, Perform (sing) +7, Tumble +7
    Feats: Force of Personality, Snowflake Wardance, Weapon Focus (mind blade)(B), Wild Talent(B)
    Challenge Rating: 8
    Possessions: Armor of the Unending Hunt (21,500 gp), Cloak of Charisma +4 (16,000 gp), Monk's Belt (12,000 gp)
    Alignment: Chaotic Neutral
    Advancement: By character level
    Level Adjustment: +4

    Bard Spells: Caster level 6th. (Spells per day: (2); Save DC 18 + spell level)
    0 - Dancing Lights, Flare, Know Direction, Mage Hand

    Psi-like Abilities: Manifester level 6th. Save DCs are Charisma-based.
    3/day - Ego Whip (1d4, DC 20)

    Smite Good (Su): Once per day the creature can make a normal melee attack to deal extra 6 damage against a good foe.

    Spell-like Abilities: Caster level 6th. Save DC's are Charisma-based.
    1/day - Desecrate, Unholy Blight (DC 22)




    VII
    As those threefold fires were brought
    to an ember's inviting warm glow
    Something stirred in the ashes
    A remnant of the evil done upon
    The mind of this horrors son.
    A fourth though invaded the Burning One
    Whose flames had been dimmed
    And stoked them hot, and spoke to Tummo
    Of rage and murder and all the
    dark passion that he should release
    to consume he, the three and all those
    who had shown disrespect and disgust
    He fought the suggestion with tooth
    And he raked himself with his claw
    Fought did he, and it was two against
    one, but three was as he should be.
    In meditations sweet gathering of fires
    To burn down all hate and shame
    But in this one night, he lost the fight
    As the face of a girl radiant and coy
    Instead blew his control all to Hell

    VIII
    He descended from the monastery on high
    To make the long journey to the village
    And bright death on the air was nigh.
    For as he sought his sweet, one with
    lily feet and soulful midnight eye.
    Her father was not have his daughter
    Spoiled by this creature from the waste
    An argument erupted in the truest sense
    of the word as the blade appeared in hand
    He sought even then a control not of men
    But as he forged the heat of his head
    into the impenetrable blade of the soul
    It grew hot in his hand, and all through
    the land was seen that great fireball
    Where once was a sword was now a great lash
    three paces and two in its length
    He could not push back, and soul turned black
    As Hell woke inside and burned to ash
    All that was he, now not three, but a single
    indescribable source of abyssal force

    IX
    For a fortnight he fought with infernal thought
    Those he had once given his heart and hand
    But Hades only knew what burns in the land of
    The damned's ego or what fearsome winds blew
    So he kept them at bay through many a battle
    until even they could not slake his fire
    So instead he climbed to the top of the peak
    of the mount and roared his burning ire.
    From sky to ground and all around
    It echoed like a choir of suffering souls
    The clouds burned away in the full sway
    of the pitborn's all consuming fury.
    Though many heard the cry from up high
    Only one fully knew what it meant
    From his lowly cave that one held a slave
    Came the practioner, father and master

    Level 15
    Spoiler
    Show

    Synad Half-Fiend Bard 1, Soulknife 5, Pyrokineticist 5

    Medium Outsider (psionic)
    Hit Dice: 1d6+5 + 5d10+25 5d8+25 (107 hp)
    Initiative: +0
    Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)
    Armor Class: 23 (+7 armor, +1 insight, +4 natural, +1 monk's belt), touch 12, flat-footed 23
    Base Attack/Grapple: +6/+10
    Attack: +1 Soulknife +12 (+24 wardance) melee (1d8+5) or Claw +10 (+22 wardance) melee (1d8+4)
    Full Attack: +1 Soulknife +12/+7 (+24/+19 wardance) melee (1d8+5) and claw +5 (+17 wardance) melee (1d8+4) and bite +5 (+17 wardance) melee (1d6+2) or 2 claws +10 (+22 wardance) melee (1d8+4) and bite +5 (+17 wardance) melee (1d8+2)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: Bardic music, bolt of fire +5d6 countersong, fascinate, fire lash, free draw, hand afire 2d6, mind blade, nimbus, psi-like abilities, psychic strike +1d8, shape mindblade, spells, spell-like abilities, throw mind blade. weapon afire 2d6
    Special Qualities: Bardic knowledge, collective, damage reduction 10/good, darkvision 60 ft., fire adaption, immunity to poison, inspire courage +1, multitask, naturally psionic (+4 pp), oracle, power resistance 10, resistance to acid 10, cold 10, electricity 10, and fire 20, threefold mind
    Saves: Fort +6, Ref +6, Will +18
    Abilities Str 18, Dex 10, Con 20, Int 10, Wis 10, Cha 34
    Skills: Concentration +13, Craft (alchemy) +1, Intimidate +19, Jump +11, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +14, Perform (sing) +7, Tumble +7
    Feats: Antagonist, Force of Personality, Snowflake Wardance, Spiritual Force, Weapon Focus (mind blade)(B), Wild Talent(B)
    Challenge Rating: 14
    Possessions: Armor of the Unending Hunt (21,500 gp), Cloak of Charisma +6 (36,000 gp), Cognizance Crystal +7 (16,000 gp), Monk's Belt (12,000 gp), Tome of Leadership and Influence +4 (110,000 gp)
    Alignment: Chaotic Evil
    Advancement: By character level
    Level Adjustment: +4

    Bard Spells: Caster level 11th. (Spells per day: (2); Save DC 19 + spell level)
    0 - Dancing Lights, Flare, Know Direction, Mage Hand

    Psi-like Abilities: Manifester level 11th. Save DCs are Charisma-based.
    3/day - Ego Whip (3d4, DC 25), Psionic Dominate (DC 25)
    1/day - Crystal Shard (11d6 piercing) or Energy Ray (11d6 energy of choice)

    Smite Good (Su): Once per day the creature can make a normal melee attack to deal extra 6 damage against a good foe.

    Spell-like Abilities: Caster level 6th. Save DC's are Charisma-based.
    1/day - Deeper Darkness, Desecrate, Greater Teleport (DC 26), Unholy Blight (DC 23)




    X
    A voice in his head spoke in
    a tone commanding yet smooth
    And up to the fire beaten
    Stone hulked the demon of mind
    Father spoke to furious son
    Of alliances and return to below
    The son though would not cave
    To the swaying of sweet words
    For he smelled the carrion breath
    of certain death in its speech.
    And finally now he knew why and how
    He could never fully vent the rage
    For despite all the fights, battles
    and spites, this he truly sought
    So with a wrath unholy he let out
    his fires, for a blood bath but
    that worm of a thought had invaded
    The Burning One of Three so when he
    would fight with all of his might
    The fire was extinguished instead
    They fought without sleep, til
    Time lost all meaning in the fogs
    Neither accepting quarter or defeat

    XI
    How long it raged on, could have
    years or decades long, a battle
    few have seen out of hell's fires
    The rains began to pour, as the
    frozen clouds thawed from the
    impact of Tummo's inferno blasting
    its way through the blizzards high
    Then without warning, on an
    unsuspecting morning, the demon he
    turned and sped off into the snows
    Tummo thought he had gone to flee
    And so pursued he til they reached
    A great slop stiff with century's snow
    There the demon of mind, now blind in
    one eye from the onslaught of flame
    Made his stand right up on the crest
    He stood straight and tall, making
    son seem small beneath his towering frame
    As he through out his chest and called
    him by name, the snows began to roar
    It began to fall, and it'd bury them all
    The town that he'd since been run out
    The demon then ran out of its way
    As the avalanche began to tumble
    Tummo he knew, could save them or pursue
    The evil he'd battled so long
    In an instant he knew and almost flew
    To the bottom of the city's valley

    XII
    All that stood between crushing the
    Town below with the flood of frost white
    Was the sputtering flame that'd been
    Stolen by the command of the demon lord
    But then Tummo realized that what he
    truly despised was to be led by a master
    The rage had made him a prisoner as
    full chained as any slaver and beaten
    to blood strips with clubs and whips
    that he had crafted by his own hand.
    With this knowledge the peace he'd
    Once thought he had flowed through him
    and he now knew what to do for control
    of one's destiny, to finally be free
    As that snow came he beat back the
    freeze of the parasite that had taken
    over the Burning One's power.
    Now not with rage, but the wisdom of age
    He stoked up those three inner fires.
    For though once they had been one, though
    each in the son, they were now working
    Together in blessed harmony
    The fire it flames, burned like midday
    in wave after infernal wave it poured
    Th snow melted down and fog gathered round
    As a thousand tons became sizzling steam
    It rose up in hate, and thunderstorm built
    The village might get wet, but it had been
    saved by Tummo's compassionate heart.
    The snow fallen off in the distance, now
    revealed a familiar hole in mountainside.
    He carefully creeped through a memory
    As he examined this past place of dread
    But to his surprise, what he found inside
    Were the frozen bones of his father
    Long ago cracked by monk's sticks and blows
    The only demon he'd fought this whole while
    Was the one within, he thought with a smile
    The worst enemy you'll find, is of the mind
    And it takes great strength to fight yourself
    This battle he'd won, the enemy undone,
    slain by Tummo, of the Three Candles.
    Level 20
    Spoiler
    Show

    Synad Half-Fiend Bard 1, Soulknife 5, Pyrokineticist 10

    Medium Outsider (psionic)
    Hit Dice: 1d6+5 + 5d10+25 10d8+50 (154 hp)
    Initiative: +0
    Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)
    Armor Class: 23 (+7 armor, +1 insight, +4 natural, +1 monk's belt), touch 12, flat-footed 23
    Base Attack/Grapple: +10/+14
    Attack: +1 Soulknife +18 (+30 wardance) melee (1d8+5) or Claw +16 (+28 wardance) melee (1d8+4)
    Full Attack: +1 Soulknife +18/+13 (+30/+25 wardance) melee (1d8+5) and claw +11 (+23 wardance) melee (1d8+4) and bite +11 (+23 wardance) melee (1d6+2) or 2 claws +16 (+28 wardance) melee (1d8+4) and bite +11 (+23 wardance) melee (1d8+2)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: Bardic music, bolt of fire +10d6, conflagration, countersong, fascinate, fire lash, free draw, hand afire 4d6, heat death, mind blade, nimbus (10 min), psi-like abilities, psychic strike +1d8, shape mindblade, spells, spell-like abilities, throw mind blade, weapon afire 4d6
    Special Qualities: Bardic knowledge, collective, damage reduction 10/good, darkvision 60 ft., fire adaption, immunity to poison, inspire courage +1, multitask, naturally psionic (+4 pp), oracle, power resistance 10, resistance to acid 10, cold 10, electricity 10, and fire 30, threefold mind
    Saves: Fort +13, Ref +13, Will +23
    Abilities Str 18, Dex 10, Con 20, Int 10, Wis 10, Cha 37
    Skills: Concentration +13, Craft (alchemy) +1, Intimidate +19, Jump +11, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +14, Perform (sing) +7, Tumble +7
    Feats: Antagonist, Force of Personality, Heroic Focus, Snowflake Wardance, Spiritual Force, Weapon Focus (mind blade)(B), Wild Talent(B)
    Challenge Rating: 18
    Possessions: Armor of the Unending Hunt (21,500 gp), Cloak of Charisma +6 (36,000 gp), Cognizance Crystal +7 (16,000 gp), Monk's Belt (12,000 gp), Tome of Leadership and Influence +5 (110,000 gp)
    Alignment: Chaotic Neutral
    Advancement: By character level
    Level Adjustment: +4

    Bard Spells: Caster level 16th. (Spells per day: (2); Save DC 23 + spell level)
    0 - Dancing Lights, Flare, Know Direction, Mage Hand

    Conflagration (Ps)
    Tummo has the ability to create a massive burst of raging flames around himself, burning everything in the area. Once per day, as a standard action, he can use this ability to deal 15d6 points of fire damage in a 30-foot-radius burst emanating from himself. Any creature or object caught in the burst can make a Reflex saving throw (DC 28) for half damage. Anyone failing the Reflex save against the conflagration must also make a Fortitude saving throw (same DC) or die due to extreme shock from the intense heat.

    Heat Death (Ps):
    Tummo can expend his psionic focus and take a full attack action to raise the internal temperature of one living creature within 30 feet to lethal levels. The target must succeed on a Fortitude saving throw (DC 27) or die horrifically as its blood (or other internal fluid) boils. Even on a successful save, the target takes 4d8 points of fire damage from the heat.

    Psi-like Abilities: Manifester level 16th. Save DCs are Charisma-based.
    3/day - Ego Whip (4d4, DC 31), Psionic Dominate (DC 31)
    1/day - Crystal Shard (no save, 16d6 piercing) or Energy Ray (no save, 16d6 energy of choice)

    Smite Good (Su): Once per day the creature can make a normal melee attack to deal extra 6 damage against a good foe.

    Spell-like Abilities: Caster level 16th. Save DC's are Charisma-based.
    3/day - Unholy Aura (DC 31)
    1/day - Deeper Darkness, Desecrate, Horrid Wilting (DC 31), Greater Teleport (DC 30), Unholy Blight (DC 27)



    Level Breakdown
    Spoiler
    Show

    Beginning Base Ability Scores
    Str 18, Dex 10, Con 20, Int 10, Wis 10, Cha 22

    End Base Ability Scores
    Str 18, Dex 10, Con 20, Int 10, Wis 10, Cha 26

    Feats
    (ECL 5) - Force of Personality
    (ECL 8) - Snowflake Wardance
    (ECL 11) - Antagonist
    (ECL 14) - Spiritual Force
    (ECL 17) - Psionic Meditation
    (ECL 20) - Heroic Focus

    Languages Known
    Abyssal, Common, Synad

    {table=head]Level|Class|BAB|Fort|Ref|Will|Skills|Feats|Special Attacks|Special Qualities|Class Features|Psi/Spell-like Abilities

    1st|LA +1|+0|+5|+0|+0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    2nd|LA +2|+0|+5|+0|+0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    3rd|LA +3|+0|+5|+0|+0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    4th|LA +4|+0|+5|+0|+0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    5th|Bard 1|+0|+5|+2|+10|Concentration +9, Intimidate +10, Jump +8, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +1, Perform (dance) +10, Perform (sing) +7, Tumble +4|Extra Music, Force of Personality|Psi-like Abilities, Spells|Collective, damage reduction 5/good, darkvision 60 ft., immunity to poison, multitask, naturally psionic (+3 pp), oracle, power resistance 10, resistance to acid 10, cold 10, electricity 10, and fire 10, threefold mind|bardic music, bardic knowledge, countersong, fascinate, inspire courage +1|Ego Whip 3/day

    6th|Soulknife 1|+0|+5|+4|+12|Concentration +10, Intimidate +11, Jump +8, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +11, Perform (sing) +7, Tumble +4|Weapon Focus (Mind Blade), Wild Talent|-|-|Mind Blade|-

    7th|Soulknife 2|+1|+5|+5|+13|Concentration +11, Intimidate +12, Jump +9, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +12, Perform (sing) +7, Tumble +6|-|-|-|Throw Mind Blade|Desecrate 1/day

    8th|Soulknife 3|+2|+6|+5|+13|Concentration +12, Intimidate +13, Jump +11, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +13, Perform (sing) +7, Tumble +7|Snowflake Wardance|-|-|Psychic Strike +1d8|-

    9th|Soulknife 4|+3|+6|+6|+14|Concentration +12, Intimidate +13, Jump +11, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +13, Perform (sing) +7, Tumble +7|-|-|-|+1 Mind Blade|Unholy Blight 1/day

    10th|Soulknife 5|+3|+6|+6|+14|Concentration +13, Craft (alchemy) +1, Intimidate +14, Jump +11, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +14, Perform (sing) +7, Tumble +7|-|-|-|Free Draw, Shape Mindblade|-

    11th|Pyrokineticist 1|+3|+8|+8|+14|Concentration +14, Craft (alchemy) +1, Intimidate +15, Jump +11, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +14, Perform (sing) +7, Tumble +7|Antagonist|-|-|Fire Lash|Psionic Dominate 3/day, Crystal Shard or Energy Ray 1/day

    12th|Pyrokineticist 2|+4|+9|+9|+15|Concentration +15, Craft (alchemy) +1, Intimidate +16, Jump +11, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +15, Perform (sing) +7, Tumble +7|-|-|-|+4 to Fire and Heat Saves, Resistance to Fire 20|Fire Adaption, Hand Afire 2d6|-

    13th|Pyrokineticist 3|+5|+9|+9|+16|Concentration +16, Craft (alchemy) +1, Intimidate +17, Jump +11, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +15, Perform (sing) +7, Tumble +7|-|-|-|Bolt of Fire 3d6|Deeper Darkness 1/day

    14th|Pyrokineticist 4|+6|+10|+10|+16|Concentration +17, Craft (alchemy) +1, Intimidate +17, Jump +11, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +16, Perform (sing) +7, Tumble +7|Spiritual Force|-|-|Bolt of Fire 4d6, Weapon Afire 2d6|-

    15th|Pyrokineticist 5|+6|+10|+10|+16|Concentration +18, Craft (alchemy) +1, Intimidate +17, Jump +11, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +17, Perform (sing) +7, Tumble +7|-|-|-|Bolt of Fire 5d6, Nimbus (5 min)|Greater Teleport 1/day

    16th|Pyrokineticist 6|+7|+11|+11|+17|Concentration +19, Craft (alchemy) +1, Intimidate +17, Jump +11, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +17, Perform (sing) +8, Tumble +7|-|-|-|Bolt of Fire 6d6, Firewalk, Nimbus (6 min)|-

    17th|Pyrokineticist 7|+8|+11|+11|+17|Concentration +19, Craft (alchemy) +1, Intimidate +18, Jump +11, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +18, Perform (sing) +8, Tumble +7|Psionic Meditation|-|+8 to fire and heat saves, Resistance to Fire 30|Bolt of Fire 7d6, Fear No Fire, Nimbus (7 min)|Mind Probe 1/day, Unholy Aura 3/day

    18th|Pyrokineticist 8|+9|+12|+12|+17|Concentration +19, Craft (alchemy) +1, Intimidate +19, Jump +11, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +19, Perform (sing) +8, Tumble +7|-|-|-|Bolt of Fire 8d6, Greater Weapon/Hand Afire 4d6, Nimbus (8 min)|-

    19th|Pyrokineticist 9|+9|+12|+12|+18|Concentration +19, Craft (alchemy) +1, Intimidate +20, Jump +11, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +20, Perform (sing) +8, Tumble +7|-|-|-|Bolt of Fire 9d6, Heat Death, Nimbus (9 min)|Horrid Wilting 1/day

    20th|Pyrokineticist 10|+10|+13|+13|+19|Concentration +19, Craft (alchemy) +1, Intimidate +21, Jump +12, Knowledge (psionics) +2, Martial Lore +2, Perform (dance) +21, Perform (sing) +8, Tumble +7|Heroic Focus|-|-|Bolt of Fire 10d6, Conflagration, Nimbus (10 min)|-

    [/table]


    Sources
    Spoiler
    Show

    Complete Adventurer
    Force of Personality feat

    Complete Psionic
    Antagonist feat
    Spiritual Force feat
    Synad race

    Expanded Psionics Handbook
    Cerebrillith monster
    Psionic Meditation feat
    Pyrokineticist PrC
    Soulknife class

    Frostburn
    Snowflake Wardance feat

    Magic of Eberron
    Heroic Focus feat

    Player's Handbook
    Bard class

    Wizards of the Coast Web Enhancement
    Half-Fiendish Variety



    Build Notes
    Spoiler
    Show

    Charisma Wins All
    This build, despite being casting, manifesting and battle based need only one core stat. Charisma.

    Classes: The saves to all the pyrokineticist builds is Charisma-based. Bard spells are Charisma-based. Psi-like Abilities are Charisma-based.

    Bard may seem a dip, but I wanted him to be something of a kata master.

    Feats: Force of Personality boosts your will via Cha instead of Wis. Spiritual Weapon adds Cha to mind blade damage. Snowflake Wardance adds Cha to all attacks.

    The result, a class whose every facet is Charisma-based, which is not a common stat that damage/drain is aimed at.

    Synad
    Synad is a very flavorful race, and it works well as a base creature for this build. As this is an action-hungry build, needing to gain psionic focus, light up weapons, and spend full-round actions, the 1/day multi-task comes in handy. As a swift action he can take an extra mental action. As gaining psionic focus and using almost every aspect of this build is mental, it is extremely useful to be able to flare up at a moment's notice and still have a full round to add to it.

    Will bonuses are nice as well.


    Half-Fiendish Variety
    Spoiler
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    First off, I was warned by Prinny that the half-fiend variant might not be well received, but that Wizard site material was allowed, so use at my own risk. I looked into other builds but none of them seemed to have the same flavor or WHAM affect that a Half-Cerebrillith provided.

    I'm going to take you through it all and show you how nearly everything is exactly the same as the original template, just more thematically appropriate.

    Cerebrillith
    This bad boy here is one of the few psionic fiends. Already a very interesting creature in its own right, its psionic and spell-like abilities go right along with a mage/psionicist build.

    Speed: This is one of two thing that alters significantly from the original. Tummo has no wings because Cerebrilliths have no wings.

    Armor Class: This is the second. Tummo gets a +4 bonus to AC instead of +1. I think this is easily made up for by the lack of winged mobility.

    Spell-Like Abilities: As the Cerebrillith has both spell-likes and psi-likes I mixed and matched. The spell/power level matches exactly that of what the original template did. 3rd level spell/power for 3rd level spell.

    Breakdown
    HD
    1-2 Darkness becomes Ego Whip
    3-4 Desecrate (unchanged)
    5-6 Unholy Blight (unchanged)
    7-8 Poison becomes Psionic Dominate
    9-10 Contagion becomes Deeper Darkness
    11-12 Blasphemy becomes Greater Telport
    13-14 Unhallow becomes Mind Probe
    15-16 Horrid Wilting (unchanged)

    All of the changes are to spells or powers that a Cerebrillith possesses. They are, as mentioned above, exactly the same level. Those that remain unchanged are spells that the Cerebrillith does possess. As such, no change is made in the power level, simply in the flavor. As Tummo matures, so does his abilities near those of his father. This is much more elegant than slapping on random spells that in no way match with the build or parent as the standard MM half-fiend template.

    Special Qualities: Unchanged, though Damage Reduction is 5-10/good instead of magic as the texts suggests. This does not alter power level.

    Abilities: The original template gives a +16 modifier to stats. Str +4, Dex +4, Con +2, Int +4, Cha +2.
    These do not match the Cerebrillith well. So, still staying within the +16 as the alternate the base stats are, they become +6 Str, +6 Con, and +4 Cha.


    Attacks
    Alright, you may be looking at the BAB and going 'Holy Cow, that's it?'

    Yeah, I know, BUT! You mind blade gets a +1 bonus. Your free Weapon Focus gives another +1 bonus. You add your Charisma-modifier and Strength-modifiers to attacks for nearly a +20 bonus to attack by the end of the build. In addition, you have 3 attacks that all get buffed.

    Damage
    Here's where things really get fun.

    Your mind-blade deals 1d8 damage. Then you have Strength and Charisma upping that for nearly 20 extra points. Then 1d8 mental damage. Then 4d6 damage on top of that.

    That's just your mind blade.

    You then also get claw and tooth. You can then add all that fire onto both

    Nimbus then increases your Charisma for even MORE damage and (and attack and save boosts)! Plus the extra fire.

    You are doing slashing, piercing, bludgeoning, fire, and mental damage at the same time with a full-round attack. There is practically nothing you can't deal damage to. Even things with regeneration won't survive long because all your attacks are fired up.

    Heat Death
    The fun keeps coming. By the end of this build you have a instakill each round with a save in the 30's. Not quite on par with an assassin's death attack ability, but it can still be nasty whether you're hiding or not.

    Snowflake Wardance
    This feat is so special to this build I think it needs a section to it's own.
    First off, the irony of a fire user with this feat amuses me.

    It is so very important to the build, granting Cha-based bonuses to attacks for a number of rounds equal to their ranks in dance. When he acquires it he can already keep the dance going for 65 total rounds per day by using up all his bardic musics (of which he has 5 thanks to his Extra Music feat). Basically, this is long enough for almost all battles a character will likely get into within 24 hours.

    The part that brings an evil smile to my face is thus; though normally you are fatigued at the end of the Snowflake Wardance, when he is wearing his Armor of the Unending Hunt he is immune to fatigue. Thus he may use this feat with impunity.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Optimystik View Post
    'Adding up numbers' is completely independent of roleplay. What you're saying makes as much sense as "peeling a banana is not a good way to drive."


  8. - Top - End - #218
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Let's just hope he doesn't suffer from treevenge.
    Quote Originally Posted by Spiffy
    Aboreal Destruction Experiment #376428
    Test subject C
    Code Name: "Spiffy"

    Excerpt from the Journal of Sssilquarfugz, Project Manager, Illithid Surface Lands Unification and Reclamation Project (ISLURP), Forest Division

    Day 1: In an effort to make full use of all resources at our disposal to our advantage, no matter how small, I have determined to begin the weaponization of the humble forest gnome. As per standard weaponization procedure, I have begun testing for psionic potential on several subjects. One, Subject C, seems to have responded strongly, hence I shall focus my experiments on it for the time being.

    Spiffy: Chaotic Evil Forest Gnome Wilder 2 / Rogue 3
    Spoiler
    Show
    Abilities: Str 8 Dex 19 Con 14 Int 12 Wis 10 Cha 14 (originally Str 10 (-2 racial) dex 18 (+1 level) con 12 (+2 racial) int 12 wis 10 cha 14)
    Racial Traits: +2 Con, -2 Str Small size (+1 AC, +1 Atk, +4 Hide, -4 Grapple) Pass Without Trace (Su) (self only), +1 atk vs. kobolds, goblinoids, orcs, and reptilian humanoids, +4 Hide (+8 in wooded areas)
    Saves: Base: Fort +1 Ref +3 Will +4 Total: Fort +3 Ref +7 Will +4
    Base Attack: +3
    AC: 19 (23 with Force Screen) Base 10, +4 Armor, +4 Dex, +1 Size
    Touch AC: 15
    Flatfooted AC: 15 (19 with Force Screen)
    HP: 32
    Speed: 20 Feet
    Inititive: +4
    Attacks: +1 Dagger: +9 Atk (+3 Base, +4 Dex, +1 Size +1 Enhancement) 1d3+1 Damage (+2d6 with Sneak Attack)
    Full Attack: +1 Dagger and Dagger +7/+7 Atk 1d3+1 (+2d6 with Sneak Attack) and 1d3 (+2d6 with Sneak Attack) Damage
    Skills: (Without modifiers) Concentrate 8, Hide 8, Move Silently 8, Disguise 4, Knowledge (Psionics) 2, Craft (Alchemy) 1, Disable Device 4, Search 4, Spot 5, Use Magic Device 8
    (With modifiers) Concentrate 10, Hide 20, Move Silently 12, Disguise 6, Knowledge (Psionics) 3, Craft (Alchemy) 2, Disable Device 5, Search 5, Spot 5, Use Magic Device 10
    Feats: Weapon Finesse, Two Weapon Fighting
    Special Abilities: Wild Surge +1, Psychic Enervation, Elude Touch, Sneak Attack +2d6,
    Trapfinding, Evasion, Trap Sense +1
    Power Points: 8
    Powers: Force Screen, Entangling Ectoplasm
    Gear: +1 Dagger, Dagger, Mithril Chain Shirt, 898 GP


    Comments: Initially, Spiffy will use Entangling Ectoplasm for basic battlefield control, keeping enemies from moving. Wild Surge even allows him to increase his manifester level just enough to augment Entangling Ectoplasm, allowing him to affect large creatures with the power. Once he begins taking rogue levels, he is more than capable of filling both scouting and trapfinding roles.

    Excerpt from the Journal of Sssilquarfugz, Project Manager, Illithid Surface Lands Unification and Reclamation Project (ISLURP), Forest Division

    Day 104: I have begun referring to Subject C as Ssspifferistezis or "Spiffy" for short. So far the Subject has succeeded enough in basic scouting roles to merit further augmentation. Pending Approval from the Committee for the Advancement of Fiery Doom (CAFD), the subject will enter into the Pyrotechnological Eruption Training Service (PETS).

    Spoiler
    Show
    Spiffy: Chaotic Evil Forest Gnome Wilder 2 / Rogue 3 / Assassin 1 / Pyrokineticist 4
    Abilities: Str 8 Dex 22 Con 14 Int 12 Wis 10 Cha 14
    Racial Traits: +2 Con, -2 Str Small size (+1 AC, +1 Atk, +4 Hide, -4 Grapple) Pass Without Trace (Su) (self only), +1 atk vs. kobolds, goblinoids, orcs, and reptilian humanoids, +4 Hide (+8 in wooded areas)
    Saves: Base: Fort +5 Ref +9 Will +5 Total: Fort +7 Ref +15 Will +5
    Base Attack: +7/2
    AC: 23 (27 with Force Screen) Base 10, +5 Armor, +6 Dex, +1 Size + 1 Deflection
    Touch AC: 19
    Flatfooted AC: 16 (20 with Force Screen)
    HP: 59
    Speed: 20 Feet
    Inititive: +6
    Attacks: +1 Flaming Surge Dagger: +15 Atk (+7 Base, +6 Dex, +1 Size +1 Enhancement) 1d3+1 Damage (+3d6 with Sneak Attack, +2d6 with Weapon Afire, +2d6 with Flaming Surge usable 2/per day) or Fire Lash +14 Atk 1d8 Damage (+3d6 with Sneak Attack, Range: 15 Feet) or Bolt of Fire +14 Atk 4d6 Damage (Range: 60 Feet) or Hand Afire +14 Atk 1d2+2d6 (+3d6 with Sneak Attack) or Tentacle +14 Atk 1d3 Damage (+3d6 with Sneak Attack)
    Full Attack: +1 Flaming Surge Dagger x2 +13/+13/+8/+8 Atk 1d3+1 (+3d6 with Sneak Attack, +2d6 with Weapon Afire, +2d6 with Flaming Surge usable 2/per day) and 1d3 (+3d6 with Sneak Attack) Damage and Tentacle x2 +10/+10 Atk 1d3 (+3d6 with Sneak Attack)
    Skills: (Without modifiers) Concentrate 8, Hide 13, Move Silently 13, Disguise 4, Knowledge (Psionics) 2, Craft (Alchemy) 1, Disable Device 8, Search 7, Spot 5, Use Magic Device 8
    (With modifiers) Concentrate 10, Hide 30, Move Silently 18, Disguise 6, Knowledge (Psionics) 3, Craft (Alchemy) 2, Disable Device 9, Search 8, Spot 7, Use Magic Device 10
    Feats: Weapon Finesse, Two Weapon Fighting, Aberrant Blood (Bulging Eyes), Deepspawn
    Special Abilities: Wild Surge +1, Psychic Enervation, Elude Touch, Sneak Attack +3d6,
    Trapfinding, Evasion, Trap Sense +1, Death Attack, Poison Use, Fire Lash, Fire Adaptation, Hand Afire, Bolt of fire, Weapon Afire
    Power Points: 8
    Powers: Force Screen, Entangling Ectoplasm
    Spells Per Day: 1st-1
    Spells Known: True Strike, Obscuring Mist
    Gear: (2) +1 Flaming Surge Daggers, +1 Mithril Chain Shirt, +1 Ring of Protection, +2 Gloves of Dexterity, 898 GP

    Comments: Now we get to core of the build, the crazy gnome that sets things on fire. Between Sneak Attack, Poisons, Death Attack, Flaming Surge, and Weapon Afire, Spiffy has huge first strike potential. Even after that though, he still has plenty of things to do in combat with Bolt of Fire and Entangling Ectoplasm (no save ranged touch attacks) allowing him to stay away from enemies while still contributing. Force Screen improves his survivability, while obscuring mist helps him either hide or obscure enemies vision. Flame Lash can serve as a backup weapon should he choose to use his daggers as thrown weapons in the first round. His hide modifier is ridiculous due to his being a forest gnome, which makes things so much easier when trying to get those sneak attacks and death attacks off.

    Excerpt from the Journal of Sssilquarfugz, Project Manager, Illithid Surface Lands Unification and Reclamation Project (ISLURP), Forest Division

    Day 746: I am continually surprised at the increasingly vicious nature of Subject C. Ordinarily, mind control makes subjects more lethargic and docile, rather than energetic and prone to setting fires at every opportunity. Fortunately, our expanding needs in the area of aggressive reclaimation provide plenty of chances for long term field testing. "Spiffy" has recently been begun showing the results of several experimental procedures designed to introduce positive mutations into its body, and now possesses improved eyesite and a pair of tentacles, the use of which the subject has not yet mastered. Aggressive physical therapy and entrance into the Death to All Terrestrials (DAT) program willno doubt be the next logical steps into the subject's development.

    Spoiler
    Show
    Spiffy: Chaotic Evil Forest Gnome Wilder 2 / Rogue 3 / Assassin 2 / Pyrokineticist 5
    Abilities: Str 8 Dex 23 Con 14 Int 12 Wis 10 Cha 14
    Racial Traits: +2 Con, -2 Str Small size (+1 AC, +1 Atk, +4 Hide, -4 Grapple) Pass Without Trace (Su) (self only), +1 atk vs. kobolds, goblinoids, orcs, and reptilian humanoids, +4 Hide (+8 in wooded areas)
    Saves: Base: Fort +5 Ref +10 Will +5 Total: Fort +7 Ref +16 Will +5
    Base Attack: +9/4
    AC: 24 (28 with Force Screen) Base 10, +5 Armor, +6 Dex, +1 Size + 1 Deflection +1 Natural
    Touch AC: 19
    Flatfooted AC: 17 (21 with Force Screen)
    HP: 73
    Speed: 20 Feet
    Inititive: +6
    Attacks: +1 Flaming Surge Dagger: +17 Atk (+9 Base, +6 Dex, +1 Size +1 Enhancement) 1d3+1 Damage (+3d6 with Sneak Attack, +2d6 with Weapon Afire, +2d6 with Flaming Surge usable 2/per day) or Fire Lash +16 Atk 1d8 Damage (+3d6 with Sneak Attack, Range: 15 Feet) or Bolt of Fire +16 Atk 5d6 Damage (Range: 60 Feet) or Hand Afire +16 Atk 1d2+2d6 (+3d6 with Sneak Attack) or Tentacle +16 Atk 1d3 Damage (+3d6 with Sneak Attack)
    Full Attack: +1 Flaming Surge Dagger x2 +15/+15/+10/+10 Atk 1d3+1 (+3d6 with Sneak Attack, +2d6 with Weapon Afire, +2d6 with Flaming Surge usable 2/per day) and 1d3 (+3d6 with Sneak Attack) Damage and Tentacle x2 +15/+15 Atk 1d3 (+3d6 with Sneak Attack)
    Skills: (Without modifiers) Concentrate 8, Hide 13, Move Silently 13, Disguise 4, Knowledge (Psionics) 2, Craft (Alchemy) 1, Disable Device 8, Search 8, Spot 5, Use Magic Device 15
    (With modifiers) Concentrate 10, Hide 30, Move Silently 18, Disguise 6, Knowledge (Psionics) 3, Craft (Alchemy) 2, Disable Device 9, Search 9, Spot 7, Use Magic Device 17
    Feats: Weapon Finesse, Two Weapon Fighting, Aberrant Blood (Bulging Eyes), Deepspawn, Multiattack
    Special Abilities: Wild Surge +1, Psychic Enervation, Elude Touch, Sneak Attack +3d6,
    Trapfinding, Evasion, Trap Sense +1, Death Attack, Poison Use, Fire Lash, Fire Adaptation, Hand Afire, Bolt of fire, Weapon Afire, Nimbus, +1 save against Poison, Uncanny Dodge
    Power Points: 8
    Powers: Force Screen, Entangling Ectoplasm
    Spells Per Day: 1st-2
    Spells Known: True Strike, Obscuring Mist, Ghost Sound
    Gear: (2) +1 Flaming Surge Daggers, +1 Mithril Chain Shirt, +1 Ring of Protection, +2 Gloves of Dexterity, Amulet of Natural Armor +1, 3898 GP

    Comments: This is where I think the build goes from useful and playable, to powerful. Multiattack makes the tentacle attacks more accurate, dramatically increasing sneak attack damage. Nimbus kicks in as well, adding yet another source of fire damage.

    Excerpt from the Journal of Sssilquarfugz, Project Manager, Illithid Surface Lands Unification and Reclamation Project (ISLURP), Forest Division

    Day 927: Subject C has shown admirable progress in the area of hostile extermination, enough so that I believe continued training and development in this area is simply necessary. The subject is, however, becoming very difficult to restrain. "Spiffy" seems incapable of understanding that an order to kill all humanoids in the area does not always mean "burn everything down" as well (granted, sometimes it does, but not always). Perhaps some time spent in the death through restraint and subtlety brigade (DTRSB) will help stabilize the subject somewhat.

    Spoiler
    Show
    Spiffy: Chaotic Evil Forest Gnome Wilder 2 / Rogue 3 / Assassin 5 / Pyrokineticist 5
    Abilities: Str 8 Dex 23 Con 14 Int 12 Wis 10 Cha 14
    Racial Traits: +2 Con, -2 Str Small size (+1 AC, +1 Atk, +4 Hide, -4 Grapple) Pass Without Trace (Su) (self only), +1 atk vs. kobolds, goblinoids, orcs, and reptilian humanoids, +4 Hide (+8 in wooded areas)
    Saves: Base: Fort +6 Ref +11 Will +6 Total: Fort +8 Ref +17 Will +6
    Base Attack: +11/6/1
    AC: 27 (29 with Force Screen) Base 10, +7 Armor, +6 Dex, +1 Size, + 2 Deflection, +1 Natural
    Touch AC: 18
    Flatfooted AC: 19 (23 with Force Screen)
    HP: 91
    Speed: 20 Feet
    Inititive: +6
    Attacks: +1 Spell-Storing Flaming Surge Dagger: +19 Atk (+11 Base, +6 Dex, +1 Size +1 Enhancement) 1d3+1 Damage (+5d6 with Sneak Attack, +2d6 with Weapon Afire, +2d6 with Flaming Surge usable 2/per day) or Fire Lash +18 Atk 1d8 Damage (+5d6 with Sneak Attack, Range: 15 Feet) or Bolt of Fire +18 Atk 5d6 Damage (Range: 60 Feet) or Hand Afire +18 Atk 1d2+2d6 (+5d6 with Sneak Attack) or Tentacle +18 Atk 1d3 Damage (+5d6 with Sneak Attack)
    Full Attack: +1 Spell-Storing Flaming Surge Dagger x2 +17/+17/+12/+12/+7/+7 Atk 1d3+1 (+5d6 with Sneak Attack, +2d6 with Weapon Afire, +2d6 with Flaming Surge usable 2/per day) and 1d3 (+3d6 with Sneak Attack) Damage and Tentacle x2 +17/+17 Atk 1d3 (+5d6 with Sneak Attack)
    Skills: (Without modifiers) Concentrate 8, Hide 18, Move Silently 18, Disguise 4, Knowledge (Psionics) 2, Craft (Alchemy) 1, Disable Device 9, Search 9, Spot 5, Use Magic Device 18
    (With modifiers) Concentrate 10, Hide 35, Move Silently 23, Disguise 6, Knowledge (Psionics) 3, Craft (Alchemy) 2, Disable Device 10, Search 10, Spot 7, Use Magic Device 23
    Feats: Weapon Finesse, Two Weapon Fighting, Aberrant Blood (Bulging Eyes), Deepspawn, Multiattack, Darkstalker
    Special Abilities: Wild Surge +1, Psychic Enervation, Elude Touch, Sneak Attack +5d6,
    Trapfinding, Evasion, Trap Sense +1, Death Attack, Poison Use, Fire Lash, Fire Adaptation, Hand Afire, Bolt of fire, Weapon Afire, Nimbus, +2 save against Poison, Uncanny Dodge, Improved Uncanny Dodge
    Power Points: 8
    Powers: Force Screen, Entangling Ectoplasm
    Spells Per Day: 1st-4 2nd-2
    Spells Known: 1st-True Strike, Obscuring Mist, Ghost Sound, Disguise Self 2nd-Alter Self, Darkness, Invisibility
    Gear: (2) +1 Spell Storing Flaming Surge Daggers, +3 Mithril Chain Shirt, +2 Ring of Protection, +2 Gloves of Dexterity, Amulet of Natural Armor +1, Wand of Fireball, 3648 GP

    Comments: Spiffy's sneak attack damage continues to increase. His new Assassin spells, particularly invisibility, continue to make his already formidible stealth capabilities even better. The Darkstalker feat helps him deal with enemies with blindsense and similar abilities.

    Excerpt from the Journal of Sssilquarfugz, Project Manager, Illithid Surface Lands Unification and Reclamation Project (ISLURP), Forest Division

    Day 1221: Disaster! Subject C has escaped! While it is quite certain that "Spiffy" will wreak havoc wherever he goes, without the guiding hands of the Committee for Organized Weapon Protocol, Ignition, and Execution (COWPIE) I fear that the subject might turn against its creators. Apprehension of the subject is now top priority.

    Spoiler
    Show
    Spiffy: Chaotic Evil Forest Gnome Wilder 2 / Rogue 3 / Assassin 5 / Pyrokineticist 10
    Abilities: Str 8 Dex 25 Con 14 Int 12 Wis 10 Cha 14
    Racial Traits: +2 Con, -2 Str Small size (+1 AC, +1 Atk, +4 Hide, -4 Grapple) Pass Without Trace (Su) (self only), +1 atk vs. kobolds, goblinoids, orcs, and reptilian humanoids, +4 Hide (+8 in wooded areas)
    Saves: Base: Fort +9 Ref +14 Will +8 Total: Fort +11 Ref +21 Will +8
    Base Attack: +15/10/5
    AC: 32 (36 with Force Screen) Base 10, +9 Armor, +6 Dex, +1 Size + 3 Deflection +3 Natural
    Touch AC: 20
    Flatfooted AC: 26 (30 with Force Screen)
    HP: 126
    Speed: 20 Feet
    Inititive: +11
    Attacks: +1 Flaming Spell-Storing Flaming Surge Dagger: +24 Atk (+15 Base, +7 Dex, +1 Size +1 Enhancement) 1d3+1d6+1 Damage (+5d6 with Sneak Attack, +4d6 with Weapon Afire, +2d6 with Flaming Surge usable 2/per day) or Fire Lash +23 Atk 1d8 Damage (+5d6 with Sneak Attack, Range: 15 Feet) or Bolt of Fire +23 Atk 10d6 Damage (Range: 60 Feet) or Hand Afire +23 Atk 1d2+2d6 (+5d6 with Sneak Attack) or Tentacle +23 Atk 1d3 Damage (+5d6 with Sneak Attack)
    Full Attack: +1 Flaming Spell-Storing Flaming Surge Dagger x2 +22/+22/+17/+17/+12/+12 Atk 1d3+1d6+1 (+5d6 with Sneak Attack, +4d6 with Weapon Afire, +2d6 with Flaming Surge usable 2/per day) and 1d3 (+3d6 with Sneak Attack) Damage and Tentacle x2 +22/+22 Atk 1d3 (+5d6 with Sneak Attack)
    Skills: (Without modifiers) Concentrate 8, Hide 18, Move Silently 18, Disguise 4, Knowledge (Psionics) 2, Craft (Alchemy) 1, Disable Device 9, Search 9, Spot 5, Use Magic Device 18, Bluff 15
    (With modifiers) Concentrate 10, Hide 36, Move Silently 24, Disguise 6, Knowledge (Psionics) 3, Craft (Alchemy) 2, Disable Device 10, Search 10, Spot 7, Use Magic Device 23, Bluff 17
    Feats: Weapon Finesse, Two Weapon Fighting, Aberrant Blood (Bulging Eyes), Deepspawn, Multiattack, Darkstalker, Improved Inititive
    Special Abilities: Wild Surge +1, Psychic Enervation, Elude Touch, Sneak Attack +5d6,
    Trapfinding, Evasion, Trap Sense +1, Death Attack, Poison Use, Fire Lash, Fire Adaptation, Hand Afire, Bolt of fire, Weapon Afire, Nimbus, +2 save against Poison, Uncanny Dodge, Improved Uncanny Dodge, Firewalk, Fear No Fire, Greater Weapon Afire, Heat Death, Conflagration
    Power Points: 8
    Powers: Force Screen, Entangling Ectoplasm
    Spells Per Day: 1st-4 2nd-2
    Spells Known: 1st-True Strike, Obscuring Mist, Ghost Sound, Disguise Self 2nd-Alter Self, Darkness, Invisibility
    Gear: (2) +1 Flaming Spell Storing Flaming Surge Daggers, +5 Mithril Chain Shirt, +3 Ring of Protection, +2 Gloves of Dexterity, Amulet of Natural Armor +3, Wand of Fireball, Ring of Freedom of Movement, 21,648 GP

    Comments: As the build comes to a close, we get to some of the Pyro's fun abilities. Greater Weapon Afire continues the damage progression, While Firewalk gives Spiffy Flight. Bolt of Fire now does 10d6 Damage, making ranged combat a viable option, especially considering Spiffy's +36 Hide modifier makes it tough for enemies to spot him even after he's successfully shot them.

    Excerpt from the Journal of Sssilquarfugz, Project Manager, Illithid Surface Lands Unification and Reclamation Project (ISLURP), Forest Division

    Day 1595: Test Subject C has been recaptured via a clever trap involving a town filled with sawdust, oil, unstable magic items. Post-capture tests indicate the subject's Fire based abilities have increased considerably since its escape. As such, I have begun preparing to begin testing the viability of Subject C as ammuntion for siege weapons, or simply strong-armed slave troops. If all goes well, I hope to see "Spiffys" mass-produced in time for Operation Stubborn Buffalo.

    Final Comments:My goal with this build is to combine the PyroKineticist's Fiery Damage Abilities with as many sources of extra damage and effects as possible. Two-Weapon Fighting, Sneak Attack, Death Attack, Poison Use, Tentacles (from the Deepspawn feat) all contribute. The Assassin Spells make hiding easier, while the Wilder Powers (Entangling Ectoplasm and Force Screen) remain useful throughout the game. Rogue abilities allow you to fill scouting and trapfinding roles within the party, while Pyrokineticist increases combat ability and versitility. Furthermore, the build is designed to be viable from the beginning of the game not just the end.

    Books Used:
    Players Handbook (Rogue class, core feats)
    Dungeon Master's Guide (Assassin Prestige Class, Magic Items)
    Monster Manual (Forest Gnome, Multiattack feat)
    Expanded Psionics Handbook (Pyrokineticist Prestige Class, Wilder Class)
    Lords of Madness (Aberrant Blood, Deepspawn, and Darkstalker feats)
    Dungeon Master's Guide II (Flaming Surge weapon ability)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Moron View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Optimystik View Post
    'Adding up numbers' is completely independent of roleplay. What you're saying makes as much sense as "peeling a banana is not a good way to drive."


  9. - Top - End - #219
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    "Time for plan B." "Is that the one where we set something on fire?"
    Quote Originally Posted by Balko
    Balko the Farmer


    It started as an headache. Sometimes, in the middle of the barley season, it was so intense he had to bow on all fours and cry out. But it was a rare, painful storm. This until the fall of 1370 Dale Reckoning. When all the provisions were stored in mills and warehouse and all leaves were brown and gold, the pulse began to hammer everyday.
    Pulse.
    Pulse.
    Pulse.
    Everyday.
    His coworkers were pissed off. “Cut it, Balko: your petty excuse doesn’t exent you from work.” He was bitten often, cause no one likes a weak screamer. Expecially one that does not work for it.
    One night, Balko was forced outside the Worker’s House – the two story building hosting the workers of the farm – and confronted by three angry workers: “Boy, this is your last chance: no illness here, no shared weight. If the houselord forces us to work for you, then you probably end up getting worst.”
    The seven feet tall man bowed on him and slapped his face.
    “Understand?”
    That was usual, everywere in the farm. This tall guy, Jab he think’s his name, is the self elected sheriff and he calls all the rules. A mobster, one would say, but Jab prefers sheriff.
    Balko is about to cry again
    “No, don’t do it, crybaby! Don’t even try to…”
    Jab’s eyes were wide. Not by the anger flowing in Balko’s veins – a victim often tries (hopes) to react – but by the dissolution of the right arm his fellow was using to keep him at bay.
    One moment before, there was an arm, a second after all seemed… “displaced?”… whatever happended, the arm now ended at the armpit.
    A scream in the open air and Balko’s eyes turning black… “Is this… just a dream?” asked Jab by himself. He didn’t stay to know.

    Voices spread in a common ambient in the same way as farts does: from the near to the far. So, the morning after, at the breakfast time a dozen of workers was glancing at him and by the diner all the house avoided him. Just in case.
    Now Balko was alone. Perfect to understand by himself what the hell had happened.

    In the following days, last ones before the great winter’s closing, with all his surprise he discovered his mind was able to create amazing exploits. Just thinking, he was able to move quicker, to disappear from the top of the oak tree just to land at its roots, to actually disjoint matter with a simple touch and to move quicker than anyone in the house.
    The headache was still here, still a disturbance, but anytime he discharged this strange energy, the pain went out.


    Spoiler
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    Balko the Farmer, 5th level human Ardent.

    HD: 5d6 (25 hp on average)
    Init.: +3
    Speed: 40 feet, 50 feet when psionically focused
    AC: 17 (+4 armor, +3 dex)
    Base atk: +3
    Attack: +7 Dagger, mw, 1d4+1, +4 whip, mw, 1d6+1; +6 touch attacks
    Full attack: +5/5 Daggers or +5 Dagger/ +2 Whip.
    Attack opt.: Psioncs powers, Shadow Hand Technique – maneuver.
    Special Qualities. Freedom Mantle (+10 ft speed); Conflict Mantle (Weapon focus: whip), Destruction Mantle (Improved Sunder), Magic Mantle (magic/psionics transparency, UMD as class skill retroactively);
    Saves: Fort 2, Refl 4, Will 5
    Abilities: Str 12, Dex 16, Con 12, Int 14, Wis 13, Cha 14
    Skills: 40 Points; Concentration 9, Craft (alchemy) 1, Hide 10, Knowledge (psionics) 4, Move Silently 8, Psicraft 10, Use Magic Devices 10
    Feats: Speed of Thought, Martial Study: Shadow Hand (Shadow Blade Technique)
    Possessions: Gloves of the Balancing Hand, Masterwork Dagger x2, Masterwork Whip, Chain Shirt.
    Psionic Powers: 1° Dimension Hop, Metaphisic Weapon, Dissipating Touch; 2° Hustle, Psionic Lion’s Charge, Dissolving Weapon.
    Maneuvers known: Shadow Blade Technique
    Alignment: Chaotic Neutral

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    Ardent Mantles suggests his philosophy and his alignment. With Freedom, Destruction, Conflict and Magic a gishy soul is suggested. Moreover, Freedom Mantle and Speed of Thought does stack and synergizes well, giving birth to a quicker than the eye character. Few psionic powers are compensate from both good selection and thematic synergies (improving touch and weapon damage is the key). Since Dexterity would be maxed since now, Weapon Finesse is a good choice. Mastial study not only grants a good maneuver, but also make Hide a class skill. It will come at use later.
    At now, Balko is specialized to come first to the target and hit hard – especially useful against spellcasters.
    He also uses Gloves of Balancing Hand to have Two Weapon Fighting as a possible option against weaker ACs.
    Disclaimer: please also note that much of this build will be presented “as is”, mostly without magic weaponry. The resulting AC, to-hit, saves and damages would result lower than expected. This is done to show the inner strength of the build, magic items aside.






    Winter’s time is just eat, cover and wait. The next spring the door would be opened again, but the coldest three months all the workers are stocked in the House. Every winter, someone dies. Less from natural causes and more out of hate, claustrophoby, other’s intolerance.
    Balko was given death three against one. Either for Jab’s hand or his custom to exit in the hearth of the winter to “cool my mind”.

    One night, sitting in the snow, he was whispering “They will kill me, they will kill me, they will….”
    “Kill ‘em first, boy”. A voice from nothing.
    He jumped on his feet, looking around: “Who’s there?”
    “Look down. And seriously, boy, kill ‘em first”.
    Balko looked down to see a small creature, something like a Imp of bard’s tales, but entirely covered by flames.
    “Who the hell are you.”
    “Hell? Not at all!” replied him “Abyss is my place, and I’m Firey”.
    “Don’t listen to him!” answered a voice. Balko looked down just to see…
    “This is impossible! You are…”
    “Yes, a small angel. Yes, just like a shrink Solar. And yes, made of snow.” And it was just like that. “That said, please don’t listen to him. He just wants your soul to be devoured by the Abyss. Don’t do it.”
    Balko’s jaw was mid air. “This… this… First of all, this is impossible. And then, guys, this is totally cliché!” One hand pointed at Firey, the other at the strange little angel. “come on! You sure are gonna tell me the story of the good guy and the bad guy, aren’t you?”
    “I know, I know” said Firey, stepping in. “But the cliché is something invented to make this contrasts aknowageable even by the simpler of minds.” He smiled “Not everyone is mister smart guy ‘round there”.
    “Besides” stepped in the angelic one “except for the cliché part, don’t listen to him: he lies any word he says.”
    “I didn’t lied on the cliché thing” replied Firey “so the <he always lies> line is unfair, friend”.
    C’mon, don’t start to argue, you know what I meant”
    “No, I don’t, and by the way, you…”
    Balko managed to win stupor and shouted: “Stop it! I don’t give a damn of your silly feud, just tell me what the hell” pause “Abyss are you come here to tell me”
    “You’re gonna got killed.” Started Firey.
    “Tonight” added the miniangel.
    “Anw we’re here to advice you for the best route to keep”
    “Yes, we are” confirmed the angel. “And by the way, I’m Winter’s Bless for the Lonely Ones. But call me Bless”.
    “Yes, whatever” replied Balko. “Tell me who’s gonna kill me and why”
    Suddenly, a reduced image of Jab and a couple of others strangling someone. Someone that was really similar to him.
    “Okay, so what? Is this already written?” Answered him, in shock.
    “Not at all, my good friend” answered Bless. “If you run away now, you can manage to…”
    Firey stepped in, interrupting: “Yes, run. Run away without any miserable meal, in a wilderness darkness and in the heart of the winter. So you can manage to reach the next city which is… what? Fifty miles away? Sure…”
    “It is the best route and besides…” was starting again Bless, but Balko asked Firey: “And so, what do you suggest?”
    “Burn them all. Alive.” Managing to shut the protests of Bless, he continued “So you’ll have any resource the stores have all for yourself and you could depart at the end of the winter.”
    “But you’ll have the burden fourty men dead by your hands.”
    “What the fourty men have done for you, lately?”
    The argument went on for half an hour, but at the end Balko asked “How can I start a so good fire?”
    “Throw me” answered Firey “and my fire body will put everything on fire.”
    And so he did, looking at the fire roaring at night, hearing the chant of the wood and the screams of the poor souls entrapped inside.
    Smiling.

    Spoiler
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    Balko the Farmer, 5th level human Ardent, 5th level Pyrokineticist

    HD: 5d6+5d8 (52 hp on average)
    Init.: +3
    Speed: 40 feet, 50 feet when psionically focused
    AC: 17 (+4 armor, +3 dex)
    Base atk: +6/1
    Attack: +10 Dagger, mw, 1d4+1, +7 Whip, mw, 1d6+1; +10 touch Fire Lash 1d8; +9 touch attacks.
    Full attack: +8/8/3 Daggers or +8/3 Dagger + 8 Fire Lash or 10/5 Dagger.
    Attack opt.: Psioncs powers, Shadow Hand Technique – maneuver, Assassin’s Stance; Bolt of Fire
    Special Qualities. Freedom Mantle (+10 ft speed); Conflict Mantle (Weapon focus: whip), Destruction Mantle (Improved Sunder), Magic Mantle (magic/psionics transparency, UMD as class skill retroactively); Fire Lash, Fire Adaptation, Hand Afire, Bolt of Fire, Weapon Afire, Nimbus.
    Saves: Fort 6, Refl 8, Will 6
    Abilities: Str 12, Dex 17, Con 12, Int 14, Wis 13, Cha 14
    Skills: 65 Points; Assigned: Concentration 14, Craft (alchemy) 1, Hide 15, Knowledge (psionics) 6, Move Silently 13, Psicraft 15, Use Magic Devices 15
    Feats: Speed of Thought, Martial Study: Shadow Hand (Shadow Blade Technique), Martial Stance: Assassin’s Stance, Dodge.
    Possessions: Gloves of the Balancing Hand, Masterwork Dagger, Masterwork Whip, Chain Shirt.
    Psionic Powers: 1° Dimension Hop, Metaphisic Weapon, Dissipating Touch; 2° Hustle, Psionic Lion’s Charge, Dissolving Weapon.
    Maneuvers and Stances known: Shadow Blade Technique, Assassin’s Stance.
    Alignment: ?

    Spoiler
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    Let’s look at synergies. Hustle and the buff from Pyrokineticist goes along pretty well: using a swift action (hustle) to gain a move action to use one of Fire Lash, Hand Afire, Weapon Afire and still have the full attack. Now the Fire Lash allows also a trip + damage combo (both are touch attacks).
    Moreover, the few psionic powers chosen are focused either on movement or action economy (Dimension Hop, Hustle, Lion’s Charge) or adding extra damage to weapon or touch (Metaphisic Weapon, Dissipating Touch, Dissolving Weapon).
    A good rank in UMD grants extra sidekicks and since Magic Mantle grants him complete magic/psionic transparency, he can use UMD even for psionic items. Have fun.
    Slowly and painfully (at least for Move Silently), the character is becoming more and more stealthy, useful with Assassin’s Stance.
    The hit and run tactics allows him to go for the big fish and retreat once killed, disabled and so.





    Alone, in groups, in armies. All the time, Belko is guided by the two figures, the angel and the demon. The demon, pleased by the Worker’s House inferno, tutored him in the secret techniques of handling and exploiting initiate’s fire. His journey led him to the capital of his realm.
    “What’s its name again?”
    “Telflamm, Balko, Telflamm.” Answered Bless. “don’t kill anyone here, please.”
    “No, don’t, he’s right. And, besides, there’s someone here I want you to know” added Firey.


    Spoiler
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    Balko the Farmer, 5th level human Ardent, 10th level Pyrokineticist

    HD: 5d6+10d8 (79 hp on average)
    Init.: +4
    Speed: 40 feet, 50 feet when psionically focused
    AC: 19 (+5 armor, +4 dex)
    Base atk: +10/5
    Attack: +15 Dagger, mw, 1d4+1, +12 Whip, mw, 1d6+1; +15 touch Fire Lash 1d8; +14 touch attacks.
    Full attack: +13/13/8 Daggers or +13/8 Dagger + 13 Fire Lash or +15/10 Dagger.
    Attack opt.: Psioncs powers, Shadow Hand Technique – maneuver, Assassin’s Stance; Bolt of Fire
    Special Qualities. Freedom Mantle (+10 ft speed); Conflict Mantle (Weapon focus: whip), Destruction Mantle (Improved Sunder), Magic Mantle (magic/psionics transparency, UMD as class skill retroactively); Fire Lash, Fire Adaptation, Hand Afire, Bolt of Fire, Weapon Afire, Nimbus, Firewalk, Fear No Fire, Greater Weapon Afire, Heat Death, Conflagration.
    Saves: Fort 9, Refl 11, Will 8
    Abilities: Str 12, Dex 18, Con 12, Int 14, Wis 13, Cha 14
    Skills: 90 Points; Assigned: Concentration 19, Craft (alchemy) 1, Hide 21, Knowledge (psionics) 10, Move Silently 18, Psicraft 20, Use Magic Devices 20
    Feats: Speed of Thought, Martial Study: Shadow Hand (Shadow Blade Technique), Martial Stance: Assassin’s Stance, Dodge, Blind Fight, Mobility*, Spring Attack.
    Possessions: Gloves of the Balancing Hand, Masterwork Dagger, Masterwork Whip, +1 Chain Shirt of Mobility*.
    Psionic Powers: 1° Dimension Hop, Metaphisic Weapon, Dissipating Touch; 2° Hustle, Psionic Lion’s Charge, Dissolving Weapon.
    Maneuvers and Stances known: Shadow Blade Technique, Assassin’s Stance.
    Alignment: ?

    Spoiler
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    More mobility, more versatility, more damage. Spring attack chain, now, combined with Lion’s Charge, allows him to charge, hit and run away from reach, leaving behind him a huge amount of damage (in case of technical difficulties, add Hustle).
    The Pyrokineticist is now over, leaving room for the end of the build. What will come next?





    A bunch of shadows, which Balko now is, glanced at Bless. He upped his lips to mimic a hiss. His eyes are now telling him to shut up – in a very trivial way, too.
    “You’re the only one that can hear me. And, by the way, don’t do it. I tell you anytime: don’t do it. Don’t kill your mark. Don’t do it.”
    Balko is not listening. The old, bearded Waterdivian noble was walking just now down the alley. Two hours of wait were coming to a meaning just in that moment. He sprung out of the shadows, smiling a devilish smile and charging towards his mark.

    Spoiler
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    Balko the Farmer, 5th level human Ardent, 10th level Pyrokineticist, 5th leve Telflammar Shadowlord
    HD: 10d6+10d8 (106 hp on average)
    Init.: +5
    Speed: 40 feet, 50 feet when psionically focused
    AC: 20 (+5 armor, +5 dex)
    Base atk: +13/8/3
    Attack: +19 Dagger, mw, 1d4+1, +16 Whip, mw, 1d6+1; +19 touch Fire Lash 1d8; +18 touch attacks.
    Full attack: +17/17/12/7 Daggers or +17/12 Dagger + 17 Fire Lash or +19/15/10 Dagger.
    Attack opt.: Psioncs powers, Spells, Shadow Hand Technique – maneuver, Assassin’s Stance; Bolt of Fire, Conflagration
    Special Qualities: Freedom Mantle (+10 ft speed); Conflict Mantle (Weapon focus: whip), Destruction Mantle (Improved Sunder), Magic Mantle (magic/psionics transparency, UMD as class skill retroactively); Fire Lash, Fire Adaptation, Hand Afire, Bolt of Fire, Weapon Afire, Nimbus, Firewalk, Fear No Fire, Greater Weapon Afire, Heat Death, Conflagration, Shadowsight (Improved Darkvision out of 60 ft), Shadow Jump (100 ft a day), Shadow Blur (20%), Shadow Walk, Shadow Pounce, Shadow Discorporation.
    Saves: Fort 10, Refl 15, Will 9
    Abilities: Str 12, Dex 20, Con 12, Int 14, Wis 13, Cha 14
    Skills: 125 Points; Assigned: Concentration 24, Craft (alchemy) 1, Hide 27, Knowledge (psionics) 10, Move Silently 22, Psicraft 25, Use Magic Devices 25
    Feats: Speed of Thought, Martial Study: Shadow Hand (Shadow Blade Technique), Martial Stance: Assassin’s Stance, Dodge, Blind Fight, Mobility*, Spring Attack, Martial Study: Hand of Death.
    Possessions: Gloves of the Balancing Hand, Masterwork Dagger, Masterwork Whip, +1 Chain Shirt of Mobility.
    Psionic Powers: 1° Dimension Hop, Metaphisic Weapon, Dissipating Touch; 2° Hustle, Psionic Lion’s Charge, Dissolving Weapon.
    Maneuvers and Stances known: Shadow Blade Technique, Assassin’s Stance, Hand of Death.
    Usual Spells: Invisibility, Shadow Mask, Shadow Spray; Nondetection, Vampiric touch; Darkbolt**
    Alignment: ?

    ** Viable only if this character manages to have another +2 to Intelligence.

    Spoiler
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    Yes, nothing better than Telflammar Shadowlord to end this build. Some entry note is needed. Skill requirements are met by Martial Study: Shadow Hand, which gives Hide as a class skill, and a painful cross class investment in Move Silently. Feat requirements are also regularly met, except for Mobility, which is given by Mobility special ability (“virtual prerequisite” rule). Dimension hop power is practically identical to shadow jump prerequisite (so the “watch the effect, not the name” rule apply). +2d6 sneak attack is met by Assassin’s Stance.
    That said, for judges’ sanity, the second PrC adds exceptional taste, more versatility and the always popular shadow pounce, to keep being effective in combat.
    A regular first offensive turn now is: swift: Hustle; move from Hustle: Greater Weapon Afire; Standard: Dimension Hop/Shadow Jump near the weaker enemy (spellcaster?) and then full attack thanks to Shadow Pounce. Against tougher ACs he can use Dissipating Touch + Hand afire to a total of 8d6 unnamed damages and 4d6 fire damages. Or, before this, trip attack via Fire Lash. Or, before, Darkbolt the target with 3 bolts.
    Hand of Death technique is the icing on the cake, as a final killing move.
    This is obviously useless only if you meet a god-like, older than mountains wizard.




    Sources

    Spoiler
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    It is not explicitly stated, but the most careful readers should have already noticed that Balko is a Faerunian character. See Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting.

    Following, quotation of any non core material

    Classes/Prestige Classes

    Complete psionics: Ardent
    Expanded Psionic Handbook: Pyrokineticist
    Unapprochable East: Telflammar Shadowlord

    Feats

    Expanded Psionic Handbook/SRD:
    Speed of Thought

    Tome of Battle, Book of Nine Swords:
    Martial Study
    Martial Stance

    Psionic Powers

    Expanded Psionic Handbook/SRD:
    Metaphisic Weapon, Dissipating Touch, Hustle, Psionic Lion's Charge, Dissolving Weapon

    Complete Psionics:
    Dimension Hop

    Maneuvers

    Tome of Battle, Book of Nine Swords

    Spells

    Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting:
    Shadow Mask, Shadow Spray, Darkbolt

    Items

    Magic Item Compendium:
    Gloves of the Balancing Hand
    Mobility armor enhancement


    An unexpecting end.

    Spoiler
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    The second after he touched the strange, bearded waterdivian, he… He opened the eyes and found himself in a totally empty space. Only a strange, pale figure in thousand and thousand of miles of gray light.
    “Well, don’t take it bad sir, but welcome to your afterlife.”
    “My what?” coughed Balko, enraged.
    “Your afterlife, sir. What did you expect? You attacked Elminster! Even a child knows that is a creative suicide exploitation.”
    He spat, rant, cursed every deity in front of the patient figure. Then, calmly, asked: “So, my final destination is Skandakaul’s reign or Mask’s Shadow? I was wandering since the ritual”.
    “Well, sir, it seems it would be… Abyss”.
    “Abyss? What the…? Why I should go to Abyss?”
    “It seems, sir, that you’ve been mischieved to evil acts by a couple of fiends from this plane. So, in accordance with universal rules, your soul is their to use.”
    “Wha…? Wait a minute, you said TWO fiends? Two? Who the heck is the second?”
    “It seems it is me”. Answered a voice from his back. He turned, but it was not necessary. He knew that voice very well. “Bless?!? Are you sorta kinda kidding me?”
    “Not at all, my friend. You said it yourself: a good and an evil advisor is a total cliché. So what if both of them were evil and the “good” one argumented every time with a bit less of persuasion and efficacy than the “bad” one?”
    “I suppose the poor advised would slowly and unadvertedly shift toward evil”
    “Good point, Firey, good point” Bless nodded to the new come fellow and continued. “So it seems we did a good job, and now your soul is ours.”
    “You, bloody damned son of…”
    “Yes, yes, but, by the way, aren’t you damned too?”
    Quotebox
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Moron View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Optimystik View Post
    'Adding up numbers' is completely independent of roleplay. What you're saying makes as much sense as "peeling a banana is not a good way to drive."


  10. - Top - End - #220
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Fire is like tape. If it isn't working, you just need more.
    Quote Originally Posted by MiLaash
    Diary of Dalgoth the Bard
    War of the Weeping Clouds, Day 194

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    I awoke this morning and crawled out of my tent promptly, even though it was drizzling again. As usual, cute, golden-brown-skinned MiLaash was already up and cooking some of her delicious spiced apple porridge over a large campfire. One of these days, I have to set an Alarm spell and see if I can wake up before her, so I could check what she does during her night watch before starting to prepare breakfast.

    She saw me and a huge smile came over her angular features. “Morning, Dal!” she called brightly. “Come talk?”

    I smiled back, in spite of myself, and staggered over to the log opposite her. Her large, deep brown eyes danced between me, the breakfast, and the cloudy sky as she prattled. Prattled about the rain, the three owls that had flown past the camp during her watch, her favorite song that I sometimes played on my flute, and the way Gnorrus the Mage snores.

    MiLaash was always a mystery. The most she’d ever told us about herself, really, was that -- contrary to what we all expected -- she claimed to have no elven blood. Normally, we just left it at that. But today, something particularly bothered me about her demeanor. Maybe it was the sheer contrast between her bubbly conversation and her tears yesterday ...

    Yesterday was the zenith of the great Battle of the Crumbling Tower, and MiLaash single-handedly burned down a keep full of ice devils. The odd thing is, she sobbed throughout the entire process. If anything, she’s usually a bit vicious in the way she attacks our foes, especially when she gets a chance to burn down one of their strongholds; but yesterday she had sobbed so hard throughout the battle, I was surprised she hadn’t extinguished her own arson. Just being near her had made me feel like it was the worst day of my life; like there was no hope to win this war. Like a little boy whose birthday was spoiled by the ale going sour ... and having a fight with his best friend ... and being scolded by his father over a misunderstanding. And then breaking his arm.

    Yet, MiLaash kept fighting valiantly, even though she was apparently experiencing the same level of despair and emotional turmoil. And as the battle raged on, I kept wondering anew: What motivates her? What keeps her passionate? Why is she in this war at all?

    Well, it’s not for nothing that I have been carefully making friends with her, morning after early morning, for many months. This morning, I finally dared to broach some questions about her past. “Don’t get me wrong, I’m very glad you’re on our side ... but why? What has involved you in this war in the first place?”

    She paused for a long, silent moment before answering. I could tell she was trying to decide if she trusted me enough to answer. “It is my destiny,” she finally replied. “Fighting the Dark Lord Morrann ... beating him ... it’s what I was born for.”

    “Born for?” I dared to prompt.

    She nodded and was silent for another long moment. “My mother was a celestial of some sort ... an Aasimar, I think they’re called? She did a lot of research before I was born about how and when it should happen -- what day of the year I should be born, and where, and all that, so that I would be a ... a being of power, destined to overthrow the Dark Lord. When I was born in the magic-charged groves of the Fey on midsummer’s eve, it should have prevented this entire war.”

    “What went wrong?”

    “I was born with horns.”

    Me:

    “VelaaVuna, the Fey Queen that my mother mostly consulted with, turned out to be one of the Dark Lord’s spies, an expert in heretical magics. And my birth was actually arranged so that I would be possessed, from birth, by a mad fire spirit. With horns.

    “My mother despaired as soon as VelaaVuna’s treachery was discovered. She abandoned me to grow up in the madness of the Fey Court. VelaaVuna, though, was so proud of how I turned out ... she raised me as her own. I know she’s evil, she’s terrible, but ... I love her anyway.”

    “But you’re against her in this war?”

    MiLaash nodded. “I may still be possessed by mad spirits at times ... like yesterday. I may be the most dangerous sort of warrior, with dark curses lashing from my lips and fire spewing from my sinews. But none of that determines my side in this war.

    “What motivates me? Destiny. If I -- no, when I overthrow the Dark Lord, it will validate my existence with my mother the Absent Aasimar, and wrack her with guilt for having abandoned me. And it will show VelaaVuna that, no matter how much she raised me to love her, no matter how much she meddled with my birth, I will never be hers. They shall both pay for how they have wronged me.”

    I sat silently to take it all in. The rain pattered against the leaves throughout the campsite.

    “Porridge?” MiLaash asked sweetly.


    MiLaash
    CN Half-Fey Lesser Aasimar LA +2 / Binder 5 / Hexblade 4 / Pyrokineticist 9


    Starting ability scores:
    Str 13; Dex 12; Con 15; Int 10; Wis 10; Cha 19
    Final ability scores:
    Str 19; Dex 16; Con 19; Int 10; Wis 12; Cha 38

    {table=head]Level | Class | Features | Feats
    1 | Binder | soul binding | Hidden Talent (dimension hop)
    2 | Hexblade | hexblade’s curse 1/day |
    3 | Binder | suppress sign, pact augmentation 1 | Azure Talent {MoI}
    4 | Hexblade | arcane resistance |
    5 | Binder | |
    6 | Pyrokineticist | fire lash | Power Attack
    7 | Pyrokineticist | fire adaptation; hand afire |
    8 | Pyrokineticist | bolt of fire |
    9 | Pyrokineticist | weapon afire | Psycarnum Infusion {MoI}
    10 | Pyrokineticist | nimbus |
    11 | Pyrokineticist | firewalk |
    12 | Pyrokineticist | fear no fire | Psionic Meditation
    13 | Pyrokineticist | greater weapon afire |
    14 | Pyrokineticist | heat death |
    15 | LA | Dex +2, Cha +2, Con -2, fey type, low-light vision, saving throw bonuses, SLAs |
    16 | Hexblade | mettle | Ability Focus (heat death) {MM}
    17 | Binder | | [Bonus] Improved Binding
    18 | Hexblade | dark companion {PHB2} |
    19 | LA | Wis +2, Cha +2, immunity to enchantment, wings, more SLAs |
    20 | Binder | pact augmentation 2 | Shape Soulmeld (lucky dice) {MoI}
    [/table]

    Skills: Concentration, Intimidate. With a few points dipped in Know(psionics) and Craft(alchemy) for prereqs, Craft(spicy food) for flavor (pun not intended), and Use Psionic Device (because hey, why not?).

    Vestiges
    Spoiler
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    At low levels (starting from Level 1), Amon and Aym are both excellent vestige choices. Both play very well with the “fire” theme of the character; Amon gives a breath weapon, while Aym gives resistance and a fire shield halo. Also, at low levels, Amon’s charging ram’s horn attack and Aym’s Halo touch attack are both very powerful abilities.

    Naberius is also available from low levels and has several attractive abilities -- most particularly the ability to use Diplomacy and Bluff in combat, which synergizes well with MeLaash’s extremely high Charisma.

    At mid-levels, while MiLaash is taking Pyrokineticist levels, there aren’t any amazing vestiges to use (since all their decent offensive abilities scale with effective Binder level, which is punished by multiclassing). Aym is still decent; Malphas has poor combat abilities but his out-of-combat utility (scouting abilities) are pretty cool; and Savnok is probably the best choice overall, with some good defensive abilities.

    From Level 17 on, Focalor becomes the standard vestige to bind, mostly for the Aura of Sadness ability. (Incidentally, the diary entry in the “Fluff” section of the build takes place at Level 17, when MiLaash’s ability to bind Focalor is new, and some of her more visible and unusual abilities (Dark Companion and Lucky Dice) haven’t come into play yet.) Paimon is also a viable choice to bind -- Whirlwind Attack with Fire Lash is a fun combo, if not exactly strong at high levels, and a Dexterity boost never hurts.

    At Level 20, Andras incidentally becomes available, and gives some decent melee abilities. He’s probably still a worse vestige choice than Focalor most of the time, but if (for example) you expect to be fighting monsters that are immune to Mind-Affecting, he’s a good alternative.


    Spells and SLAs
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    At Level 18, MiLaash learns two Hexblade spells (4/day). Level 1 spells obviously aren’t going to add to her combat power at this point, so they might as well just be useful utilities, like Presitdigitation or Unseen Servant or Detect Magic. The nicest thing about them, really, might be the fact that they allow MiLaash to use whatever ranks she’s picked up in Craft (alchemy), even if your DM enforces the anal restrictions on that skill 100%.

    Spell-Like Abilities from Half-Fey, however, are not nearly so useless. With Charisma-based save DCs, Confusion, Dominate Person, Mass Charm, and Insanity all become fairly viable attacks. And nobody minds having Glitterdust, Faerie Fire, or Protection from Law around, even at high levels.


    Tricky Things and Items
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    By the closest reading of RAW I’ve been able to do, there’s nothing that says that the temporary Power Points granted by Azure Talent go away if the feat no longer has essentia invested in it (i.e. if the essentia “invested” in it was temporary essentia from using Psycarnum Infusion). Therefore, with the investment of a few feats, I’ve essentially given MiLaash a medium pool of Power Points on a per-encounter basis, to power her mobility (Dimension Hop and Firewalk).

    Even if you think that’s a dirty trick and you wouldn’t allow it, I hope it doesn’t hurt MiLaash’s Elegance scores too much, since it’s not really crucial to the build overall. I did think it was fun to build a character with a psionic PrC (which depends in a minor way on PP) without taking a single level of any classes that grant PP.

    I picked up Lucky Dice at Level 20 to make Psycarnum Infusion get more mileage, and to continue the “theme” of MiLaash being an Incarnum-using character.

    I didn’t manage to fit Two-Weapon Fighting into the build. However, it can still be acquired by buying Gloves of the Balanced Hand (MIC). That way, MiLaash can attack with her Fire Lash and punch somebody with Hand Afire (and possibly also use a vestige-granted natural attack) all in the same round.

    At later levels, when MiLaash will sometimes be wanting to spend her move action on recovering Psionic Focus, various items from Tome of Battle can still allow her to make more than one attack with her fiery weapons. Novice Tiger Claw Bracers (wolf fang strike) seem particularly appropriate. At very high levels, with lots of wealth, I also encourage buying a Psicrown of the Evader, for manifesting Hustle.

    For the record, MiLaash's final ability scores assume the following items:
    • Tome of Leadership and Influence +5
    • Str +6
    • Dex +4
    • Con +6
    • Cha +6



    General Power Discussion
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    First, I just want to say that Hidden Talent (dimension hop) is a fantastically useful feat at very low levels, before you can afford Anklets of Translocation.

    At low levels, MiLaash should be quite powerful just from her Binder abilities before they’re diluted too much from multiclassing.

    The first three Hexblade levels don’t help much offensively (although with MiLaash’s Charisma, the Curse just might stick!), but they’re nice for the d10 Hit Die, Charisma to all saves vs. spells, and Mettle. Speaking of Charisma synergy, remember that it also governs her Binder pact making checks and Save DCs.

    Levels 6-13 have no real “trick” about them ... just hit things as much as possible with some combination of a fiery touch-attack whip, a fiery fist (possibly as a touch attack, once you have Nimbus), a vestige-granted natural attack, and any other weapon of your choice (again, on fire, at high enough levels). And Power Attack. I think the combination of all of these, plus excellent mobility and the occasional miscellaneous Vestige power, should keep MiLaash pretty viable through the middle levels.

    The real focus of the build, though, is using Heat Death as effectively as possible. A save-or-die ability on a nonspellcaster character, with no limit of uses per day, and a 30-foot range? Not burdened with the [Death], [Fire], [Fear], or [Mind-Affecting] tags? Yes please!

    Heat Death should have a DC of 22 when you first get it. That’s a little bit wimpy for Level 14 ... so the rest of the build focuses on increasing it. By Level 20, the Heat Death DC should be 30, which is quite respectable. And that’s before you factor in an extra +2 bonus while using Nimbus, or the way your opponents should have their saves reduced by -4 from Dark Companion and Aura of Sadness. (And occasionally an additional -2 from the Hexblade Curse.)

    Against tough opponents like bosses, MiLaash at higher levels should be spamming Heat Death every other round (or every round with Psicrown of the Evader). On the off-rounds, she can regain her psionic focus and either throw out a vestige-based attack ability, or make a Fire Lash Power Attack.
    Quotebox
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Moron View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Optimystik View Post
    'Adding up numbers' is completely independent of roleplay. What you're saying makes as much sense as "peeling a banana is not a good way to drive."


  11. - Top - End - #221
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Private-Prinny's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    When life gives you lemons, something something something fire.
    Quote Originally Posted by Taliesin
    Taliesin Pyrain
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    Level Breakdown with references and tricks
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    Chaotic Evil Lesser Aasimar (Players Guide to Faerun) from Thay. Hexblade 5 (CWar)/Pyrokineticist 10(XPH)/Blackguard 3(DMG)/Hexblade 2

    1) Dreadful Wrath (Player's Guide to Faerun)
    3) Wild Talent (XPH)
    5) Bonus: Combat Casting
    6) Imperious Command (Drow of the Underdark)
    9) Power Attack
    12) Cleave
    15) Improved Sunder
    18) Ability Focus (Heat Death) (MM)

    Swearing to Elder Evil (Elder Evils) (Pandorym): Vile Feats:

    1) Willing Deformity (Heroes of Horror)
    5) Abominable Form (Elder Evils)
    10) Deformity (Madness) (EE)
    15) Reflexive Psychosis (EE)
    20) Deformity (Face) (EE)

    14 (6)
    14 (6)
    14 (6)
    12 (4)
    10
    18 (10)

    1) Hexblade 1: 4 ranks Concentration, 4 ranks Bluff, 4 ranks Intimidate. Hexblade's Curse 1/day, Dreadful Wrath, Willing Deformity
    First level is fairly normal. You have 12 hp, decent accuracy and damage, and your AC is decent. You're no pure fighter, but you make up for it with Dreadful Wrath, which means opening battles with a Charge is amazingly good. Every enemy within 20 ft of the charge has to make a DC 14 will save or be shaken for a minute. Only works once per enemy, of course, but it's still a great debuff. Hexblade's curse synergizes nicely with it, with a similar DC, and debuffs pretty much everything. You also have amazing Bluff and Intimidate, thanks to high Charisma, and Willing Deformity. You also have a few resistances, daylight 1/day, and darkvision, which are all nice side benefits.

    2) Hexblade 2: 1 rank Concentration, 1 CC rank knowledge (psionics), 1 rank Intimidate. Arcane Resistance.
    Synergy bonus to intimidate will come in handy later. You keep doing what you did last level, only now you have +1 to all DC's from your level, and a pretty +charisma to saves against spells/spell-like abilities. Considering spells are the biggest threat that you make saves against, most of the time, this is welcome and awesome.

    3) Hexblade 3: 1 rank Concentration, 1 CC rank knowlege (psionics), 1 rank Intimidate. Mettle, Wild Talent
    Your Wild Talent lets you become Psionically Focused. At the moment, there isn't much practical application for it, but you need it to qualify for Pyrokineticist. More usefully, you have Mettle, which provides effective Evasion for Fortitude and Will saves. Very useful ability.

    4) Hexblade 4: 1 rank Concentration, 1 rank Intimidate, 1 rank Craft(Alchemy), +1 Cha. Dark Companion
    Ah! Here we go. Dark Companion is amazing. It debuffs an enemy with -2 to AC and saves, and can move to switch targets as a free action. Synergizes amazingly with your again boosted DC's on Curse and Dreadful Wrath. Dark Companion, followed by a charge activating Dreadful Wrath, forces a DC 16 will save with a -2 penalty against shaken. Following that with Curse forces a DC 16 will save with -4 penalty, for a total penalty to saves of -6. We also get a couple of Hexblade spells, 1/day due to Charisma. Protection from Good and Charm person aren't bad options, since with our decent melee and debuff presence, and poor spell selection, utility spells that expand our abilities are useful. Consider Undetectable Alignment in a mostly good game :D.

    5) Hexblade 5: 1 rank Concentration, 2 CC ranks Know(psionics). Hexblade's Curse 2/day, Combat Casting, Abominable Form
    Decent level. We finally qualify for Pyrokineticist, and get another use of Hexblade's Curse, which is quite nice for increasing debuff potential. Abominable Form forces more will saves against fear, and interacts nicely with Dreadful Wrath, albeit only on enemies with lower HD (Yaaay, frightens if they fail both saves!). It also gives a larger bonus to Intimidate, which will be amazing next level.

    6) Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 1: 1 rank Intimidate, Never Outnumbered Skill Trick. Imperious Command (Drow of the Underdark), Flame Lash
    Ah, Imperious Command abuse. Build gets pretty amazing here.
    Fear effects stack in duration and potency. That is, a short duration fear effect that sets the target to frightened, followed by a long effect that would give shaken, stacks to Panicked for the entirety of the long duration. Imperious Command makes enemies Cower for a round when intimidated in combat, and then frightened for a round. Never Outnumbered lets you intimidate all enemies in 10 ft at once. Stack with Dreadful Wrath imposing a minute of Shaken?
    Well. All enemies affected by both are Cowering for the next minute, and are pretty much dead. The problem with this trick is that it's so amazing, you're going to be fighting Undead and other fear-immune creatures, because it's so devastating. Of course, enemies who make their saves, or who you can't intimidate, ignore the effect, but with your solid charisma, that's not exactly easy. Flame Lash provides a short ranged option with serious accuracy, thanks to being a touch attack. Consider using it as an offhand weapon, to provide full-attack capability at a distance next level.

    7) Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 2: 2 ranks Intimidate, 1 rank Bluff (5 ranks, synergy). Fire Adaption, Hand Afire
    Yaay, BAB. With +6 BAB, you can now make iteratives with Fire Lash, which are quite likely to hit. Hand Afire isn't incredibly useful, but if you're using the lash two handed, it makes a good backup weapon to threaten. Alternatively, consider a reach weapon with Hand Afire threatening close range. Synergy bonus to Intimidate from Bluff is nice, and means Imperious Command is even more likely to work. Fire Adaption is a good bit of resistance, and applies to a good range of monsters. Sure, everything resists fire, but almost everything does fire damage, as well.

    8) Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 3: 1 rank Intimidate, 2 CC ranks Hide +1 cha. Bolt of Fire
    Cha boost is a nice bump to almost all your DC's, and gets another first level spell per day if you didn't already get a Cloak of Charisma (you should have). Bolt of Fire provides your mid to long(ish)-ranged option, though it's often outclassed by just attacking. 3d6 damage isn't bad, though, and it quickly scales into the effective range, especially with your strong BAB.

    9) Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 4: 1 rank Intimidate, 2 CC ranks Hide. Weapon Afire, Power Attack
    Weapon Afire and Power Attack mean nice boost to direct attacks. Wielding Flame Lash two-handed isn't a bad option, not when you can power attack for 8 BAB and get +16 fire damage. With your Dark Companion and Curse imposing AC penalties, this can actually remain fairly accurate. Weapon Afire is basically +2d6 fire damage on all attacks, which is pretty awesome.

    10) Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 5: 1 rank Intimidate, 2 CC ranks Hide. Nimbus, Deformity (Madness).

    Ah, Vile feats. Is there nothing you don't make amazing? Madness means you're immune to mind-affecting effects, at the cost of a permanent -4 wisdom. That's ok, you don't really need wisdom right now. If you want Blackguard spells later, buy some Wands or something. They aren't amazing to begin with. It also boosts the DC of Abominable Form to 21, though how often that applies, I am unsure.
    Nimbus is an amazing boost for one fight/day. Charisma increase means the DC's on Dreadful Wrath, Hexblade's Curse, and your Intimidate attemps increases nicely, gives extra spells/day from Hexblade, and will later boost your Heat Death and Conflagration abilities.

    11) Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 6: 1 rank Intimidate, 2 CC ranks Hide. Firewalk.
    All right, Firewalk isn't that good. You can't use it more than 1 round a day without losing the ability to Psionically Focus, but it can come in handy on the rare occasion you need perfect aerial mobility, or just want to look really classy for a round.

    12) Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 7: 1 rank Intimidate, 2 CC ranks Hide, +1 cha. Fear No Fire, Cleave.
    Cleave may come up once or twice, but it's mostly a Blackguard prerequisite. Fear No Fire is nice, but not amazing, and means you're almost certainly immune to any fire effect offering a save (between Arcane Resistance and +8, mettle, and fire resistance, you can shrug off fireballs, and block any applicable fort or will saves).

    13) Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 8: 1 rank Intimidate, 2 CC ranks Hide (6 total). Greater Weapon Afire.
    Greater Weapon Afire offers another great boost to your basic melee capabilities, and is combined with a shiny +11 BAB, for another iterative. Huzzah for Flame Lash dealing 1d8+str+4d6 on three attacks!

    14) Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 9: 1 rank Intimidate, 2 CC ranks Knowledge(Religion). Heat Death.
    Heat Death is siiiick. You have amazing Charisma. You have save debuffs. You have a save-or-die that bypasses Fire Immunity, and lets you kill people with your mind (even if 1/encounter, given that recharging Psionic Focus is a full-round action). Stacking your save debuffs yields -6 to saves (Curse, Shaken, Dark Companion), which makes the save against Heat Death effectively 20+charisma modifier (likely around 8 now, buffable with Nimbus), which has an amazing chance at downing low-fort enemies (for example, Astral Devas, who have all good saves, have a mere +14 to fort saves. 65% chance of failure). However, such enemies are likely to make the will save, so we'll keep stacking penalties.

    15) Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 10: 1 rank Intimidate, 2 CC ranks Knowledge(Religion) (2 total). Conflagration, Improved Sunder, Reflexive Psychosis.
    Again with the Vile feats. Reflexive Psychosis is hilarious, as it gives DR 5/- as a swift action, in return for being confused for a round... but wait, we're immune to confusion due to Deformity (Madness), the prerequisite for Reflexive Psychosis. So, free DR 5/-, as long as we have a swift action? SCORE.
    Conflagration is decent, even if only 1/day. Reflex save against a lot of fire damage, which if failed, results in a fort save vs death. Not bad, and a neat capstone. We now have the prerequisites for Blackguard, barely (6 ranks hide, 2 ranks Knowledge (religion), Cleave, Improved Sunder, Power Attack)

    16) Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 10/Blackguard 1: 1 rank Intimidate, 2 ranks Concentration, +1 charisma. Aura of Evil, Detect Good, Poison Use.
    Blackguard opens with not much. Aura of Evil doesn't really help, Detect Good is minimally useful, and Poison use is, again, of limited potential application. Poisons aren't bad, given your save debuffs, but aren't exactly amazing at this level. You get a Charisma bonus to an even number, +1 to DC's. Yaaay.

    17) Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 10/Blackguard 2: 1 rank Intimidate, 2 ranks Concentration. Dark Blessing, Smite Good 1/day.
    Smite Good scales better than Smite Evil, since it's based on Character level, but Dark Blessing is a gem here. Charisma to saves? Stacks with Arcane Resistance? Don't expect to fail saves against spells ever again.

    18) Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 10/Blackguard 3: 1 rank Intimidate, 2 ranks Concentration. Commad Undead, Aura of Despair, Ability Focus(Heat Death)
    So, command and rebuke as a 1'st (16'th?) level cleric? Mediocre, still, since it's too late to get feats making use of it. The star here is Aura of Despair, which debuffs enemy saves in 10 ft by -2, stacking with Dark Companion, Curse, and Shaken, for -8 to saves. Oh, and Ability Focus boosts Heat Death to DC 16+cha. So your opponents get DC 25 fort save with a -8 to saves? Yeah, that's not very likely.

    19) Hexblade 6/Pyrokineticist 10/Blackguard 3: 1 rank Intimidate, 2 ranks Concentration. Forced Omens (See Dead Levels article, http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/cwc/20070227x)
    All right, fine. You get a first level spell per day, Prestidigitation 1/day, another spell known, and +1 to the DC of hexblade's curse. It's not that good, all right?

    20) Hexblade 7/Pyrokineticist 10/Blackguard 3: 1 rank Intimidate, 2 ranks Concentration, +1 charisma. Greater Hexblade's Curse, Defomity (Face).
    Greater Hexblade's curse is quite nice, doubling the penalty from Curse to -4. Still admittedly 2/day, and with a DC of just 13+charisma (+1 if you have Hexbands, +2 with Veil of Allure), but nonetheless useful, stacked with all your other debuffs. Facial scars provide another +2 intimidate.


    Items
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    Cloak of Charisma +x, Belt of Giant Strength +x, Amulet of Health +x, Gloves of Dexterity +x

    Standard stat boosters improve your melee and save DC's. Magic Item Compendium lets you add properties to other items at no additional cost, so slap them on other items if possible.

    Hexbands (MIC) add 1 to the DC of hexblades curse, and minor action activation (5/day!) adds charisma to damage against Hexed target on all attacks for one round. At 3100 gp, a bargain.

    Gauntlets of Energy Transformation (MIC), for a mere 1000 gp, let you change the element of Weapon Afire and Flame Lash to Acid, Cold, or Electricity as a swift action 3/day, letting you bypass resistances and immunties. Excellent item to get.

    Sudden Stunning (DMGII) weapons of any sort. Add 2000 gp onto the price of your magic weapon of choice. cha/day, swift action activation on hitting, your opponent makes a reflex save (DC 10+1/2 level+cha) or is stunned for 1d4+1 rounds. Absolutely ridiculous, and amazingly powerful. Especially with your save debuffing capability.

    Fearsome (Drow of the Underdark) armor is godly as well. +5 enhancment bonus to intimidate (normal items give competence bonuses), and you can intimidate in combat as a MOVE action. At 5000 gp tacked onto the price, also cheap, and very effective.

    Fearsome (MIC) isn't bad, but isn't amazing. 3/day, swift action, all enemies in 20 ft burst make DC 16 will save vs panic. If they succeed, they are shaken for a round. Enemies who failed saves against Fearsome Wrath are thus auto-frightened for a minute, but at 15000 gp, not exactly cheap.

    Hat of Disguise, at 1800 gp, is a good deal for something that keeps people from noticing that you're a mutilated monstrosity.

    Veil of Allure (MIC) is also pricey, at 14000, but +2 to charisma based DC's is AMAZING. Curse, Fear effects, and Heat Death all benefit significantly.

    You can use a few good Wands and Eternal Wands (MIC). Faith Healing is nice for backup healing when you get Blackguard, Undetectable Alignment might not be a bad investment, and other nice spells on your list, like Whirling Blade, are great offensive options. Hound of Doom (Complete Warrior) is pretty pimp as an Eternal Wand, letting you summon a Dire Wolf with your health, BAB, and a nice deflection bonus to AC. At 10800 gp, it's not cheap, but it's a very nice backup beatstick option for enemies immune to fear and/or fire.



    Background/Stats at 6, 10, and 18

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    Fire. It was their weapon against him. Ice and acid, he could endure, but the crackling flames... the brands. Those scarred. They left their mark on a child, twisted him against the world.

    The child of an unknown father, Taliesin Pyrain was sold into slavery as a young adult by his mother. Growing up in Thay, Taliesin's unusual heiritage was mostly concealed, but was ultimately irrelevant. When he was infected with the plague, his mother was left with a simple choice: Her son could die of plague, or he could be cured, and live a slave. She had no more means, and thus options than that.

    As a young adult, Taliesin didn't take to slavery well. He was branded with the name of his new owner, and punished brutally for transgressions. Fire, manacles, whips, and menial labor were his lot in life, until he finally learned his place.

    After he was trained (and thoroughly scarred), Taliesin was sold to a Red Wizard as a menial assistant. From there, they travelled to an ancient Imaskaran ruin, the mage searching for some sort of weapon.

    During that time, greatly daring, Taliesin served as a scribe to the Wizard's ramblings, as well as a manual servant. Greatly daring, he remembered and duplicated the Wizard's notes. Together, they spoke of an ancient power, a weapon brought to Faerun to destroy the gods. A power only referred to as "Pandorym".

    Filled with anger against the gods who let such tragedy as his own life occur, and against the people who allowed such horror, Taliesin swore an oath to help unleash that weapon, to destroy civilization and possibly the world. There are worse things than death.

    As he did so, his latent psionic capabilities awoke. He focused his fear and anger, and formed a flaming whip, a symbol of his oppression. With it, confidence reawoke. He WOULD be free. Dissolving the blaze, he stepped out of the tent towards his "master". With a fierce cry, he leapt at his captor, cursing him, and anticipating death to shortly follow. To his surprise, the wizard was almost... fearful, and his return casting of Blindness was utterly ineffective. Taliesein immediately seared the wizard with a blow to his side, igniting his robes and causing him to fall, rolling to put out the flames. Slowly, and in great detail, Taliesein began to detail what had been done to him as a new slave. The wizard, wracked with too much pain to focus, began to pale as he realized what was about to happen to him.

    After dismembering and thoroughly burning his "master"'s body, Taliesein set fire to the encampment, to see it burn, and left.

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    Taliesein Pyrain, Level 6
    Chaotic Evil Male Aasimar Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 1
    Humanoid(Planetouched, Psionic)
    HP 5d10+1d8+12 (49)
    Init +2
    Speed 30 ft
    AC 16, Touch 12, FF 14
    BAB +5/Grapple +7
    Attack or Full Attack: +1 Sudden Stunning Longsword, +8 melee, 1d8+3, or Flame Lash, +7 ranged touch, 1d8+2 (range 15 ft).
    Stats: Strength 14, Dexterity 14, Constitution 14, Intelligence 12, Wisdom 10, Charisma 21
    Special Attacks: Daylight 1/day, Hexblade's Curse 2/day, Flame Lash
    Special Qualities: Arcane Resistance, Mettle, Resist 5 Cold, Electricity, and Acid, Darkvision 60 ft, Dark Companion,
    Feats: Dreadful Wrath, Willing Deformity, Wild Talent, Combat Casting, Abominable Form, Imperious Command
    Saves: Fort +5, Ref +5, Will +4 (+5 to all saves vs spells/spell-like abilities)
    Skills: Intimidate +18, Bluff +9, Concentration +10 (+14 casting defensively), Spot +2, Listen +2, Knowledge (Psionics) +3, Craft (Alchemy) +2
    Items: Cloak of Charisma +2, Masterwork chain shirt, +1 Sudden Stunning Longsword (DC 18, 5/day), Hexbands, Hat of Disguise

    Spells: 2 (DC 16)

    1) Protection From Good, Charm Person

    PP: 2/day

    Hexblade's Curse: Twice per day, as a free action, Taliesein may curse an enemy within 60 ft. The target takes a -2 penalty on attacks, saves, skill checks, ability checks, and damage rolls for 1 hour. A sucessful will save (DC 18) negates the effect.

    Dreadful Wrath: When you charge, make a full attack, or cast a spell that either targets an enemy or includes an enemy in its area, you gain the frightful presence ability for that round. Each enemy within a 20-foot radius of you must succeed on a Will save (DC 18) or be shaken for 1 minute. Regardless of its success or failure on the saving throw, any creature exposed to this effect is immune to your frightful presence for the next 24 hours. This is an extraordinary morale effect.

    Abominable Form: Living creatures with fewer Hit Dice than you that can see your undisguised form are afflicted by disgust. Each such creature must succeed on a Will save (DC 19) or become shaken for 2 rounds.

    Imperious Command: Enemies you demoralize in combat cower for a round, then are shaken for a round.

    Level 6 is a serious breakpoint for this build, since its stacking fear effects really come into play.

    Fear effects stack in duration and potency. That is, a short duration fear effect that sets the target to frightened, followed by a long effect that would give shaken, stacks to Panicked for the entirety of the long duration. Imperious Command makes enemies Cower for a round when intimidated in combat, and then frightened for a round. Never Outnumbered lets you intimidate all enemies in 10 ft at once. Stack with Dreadful Wrath imposing a minute of Shaken?

    Well. All enemies affected by both are Cowering for the next minute, and are pretty much dead. The problem with this trick is that it's so amazing, you're going to be fighting Undead and other fear-immune creatures, because it's so devastating. Of course, enemies who make their saves, or who you can't intimidate, ignore the effect, but with your solid charisma, that's not exactly easy. Flame Lash provides a short ranged option with serious accuracy, thanks to being a touch attack.

    Imagine, if you will, an ordinary human surrounded by bandits who suddenly transforms into a terrifyingly scarred angel, summons a whip of fire to his hand, and commands them to bow down. And they do so. He then proceeds to burn them to death with the whip.

    Socially, you lack many tricks other than absurdly high intimidate, charm person, and a bit of bluff. Other out of combat capabilities are similarly limited in scope.



    Taliesin proceeded to deliver justice to the Red Wizards and slavers. Searching through towns, he burned down many Thayan trading outposts, and the charred remains of the wizards were only occasionally found. Occasionally, there were stories by slaves of a flaming angel that annihilated their captors, but it was never collaborated by any living slavers.

    Taliesin fights for what he believes is right. He especially hates slavers and anyone associated with the trade, and won't abide torture of innocents. However, against those he judges guilty, or who oppose, he shows no remorse, maybe even delight, in inflicting unspeakable horrors on them. A quick death is the best you can hope for at his hands.

    Over time, however, the horrors he had endured, and those he had inflicted, began to take their toll. Slowly, Taliesin began to slip into insanity.

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    Taliesein Pyrain, Level 10:
    Chaotic Evil Male Aasimar Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 5
    Humanoid(Planetouched, Psionic)
    HP 5d10+5d8+30 (85)
    Init +3
    Speed 30 ft
    AC 19, Touch 13, FF 16
    BAB +8/Grapple +11
    Attack: +1 Sudden Stunning Longsword, +12 melee, 1d8+4 and 2d6 fire damage, or Flame Lash, +9 ranged touch, 1d8+3+2d6 fire (range 15 ft) or Bolt of Fire, +9 ranged touch, 60 ft, 5d6
    Full Attack: +1 Sudden Stunning Longsword, +12/7 melee, 1d8+4 and 2d6 fire damage, or Flame Lash, +7/2 ranged touch, 1d8+3+2d6 fire (range 15 ft).
    Stats: Strength 16, Dexterity 16, Constitution 16, Intelligence 12, Wisdom 6, Charisma 22
    Saves: Fort +10 Ref +10 Will +5 (+6 on saves vs spells/spell-like abilities. Immune to Mind Affecting effects)
    Special Attacks: Daylight 1/day, Hexblade's Curse 2/day, Flame Lash, Nimbus, Hand Afire, Weapon Afire, Bolt of Fire
    Special Qualities: Arcane Resistance, Mettle, Resist 5 Cold, Electricity, and Acid, Darkvision 60 ft, Dark Companion, Fire Adaption.
    Feats: Dreadful Wrath, Willing Deformity, Wild Talent, Combat Casting, Abominable Form, Imperious Command, Power Attack, Willing Deformity (Madness)
    Skills: Intimidate +31, Bluff +11, Concentration +10 (+14 casting defensively), Spot +0, Listen +0, Hide +5, Knowledge (Psionics) +3, Craft(Alchemy)+2
    Items: Cloak of Charisma +2 and resistance +2, Gloves of Dexterity +2 and Energy Transformation, Amulet of Health +2, Belt of Giant's Strength +2, +2 Fearsome chain shirt, +1 Sudden Stunning Longsword (DC 21, 6/day), Hexbands, Hat of Disguise, Eternal Wand of Hound of Doom

    Spells: 2 (DC 17)

    1) Protection From Good, Charm Person

    PP: 2/day

    Hexblade's Curse: As previous. DC 19
    Dreadful Wrath: As before, DC 21
    Abominable Form: As before, DC 21

    Hound of Doom makes an alarmingly awesome backup. With 20 AC, your hit points, and a bite at +15 to hit, this minutes/level unique 3rd level spell on your list, castable from a wand, is one of your best bets for dealing with enemies immune to fear and/or fire.
    Power Attack is beautiful with Fire Lash, and your solid BAB. Also, your lash can be configured to other elements using the effect of Gauntlets of Energy Transformating, which let you deal Cold, Acid, and Electricity damage.


    As he fell deeper into insanity, Taliesin's thinking became focused on the peace of oblivion. Rather than free slaves, he instead killed them. The afterlife awaiting them was better than the life as a human without means. Farmers barely ekeing a living off the land? Their lives were full of meaningless toil. Better that it end. Rumors of villages disappearing in flames, charred ruins of towns, and other catastrophic conflagrations swept the land like wildfire. People began to live in fear, not understanding the peace of the life after.

    Taliesin remembered his oath, to free the Godslayer. He has begun searching out sages, and even demons, to learn more about how he can bring about a final end to things.

    Spoiler
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    Taliesein Pyrain, Level 18:
    Chaotic Evil Male Aasimar Hexblade 5/Pyrokineticist 10/Blackguard 3
    Humanoid(Planetouched, Psionic)
    HP 8d10+10d8+90 (184)
    Init +5
    Speed 30 ft, 60 ft Fly (good)
    AC 21, Touch 15, FF 16
    BAB +15/Grapple +20
    Attack: +1 Sudden Stunning Longsword, +21 melee, 1d8+6 and 2d6 fire damage, or Flame Lash, +20 ranged touch, 1d8+5+4d6 fire (range 15 ft) or Bolt of Fire, +20 ranged touch, 60 ft, 10d6 fire
    Full Attack: +1 Sudden Stunning Longsword, +21/16/11 melee, 1d8+6 and 4d6 fire damage, or Flame Lash, +20/15/10 ranged touch, 1d8+5+4d6 fire (range 15 ft).
    Stats: Strength 20, Dexterity 20, Constitution 20, Intelligence 12, Wisdom 6, Charisma 30
    Saves: Fort +31 Ref +29 Will +21 (+10 on saves vs spells/spell-like abilities. Immune to Mind Affecting effects)
    Special Attacks: Daylight 1/day, Hexblade's Curse 2/day, Flame Lash, Nimbus, Greater Weapon Afire, Bolt of Fire, Firewalk, Heat Death, Conflagration, Aura of Despair, Smite Good 1/day, Detect Good
    Special Qualities: Arcane Resistance, Mettle, Resist 5 Cold, Electricity, and Acid, Darkvision 60 ft, Dark Companion, Fear No Fire, Dark Blessing, Aura of Despair, Poison Use
    Feats: Dreadful Wrath, Willing Deformity, Wild Talent, Combat Casting, Abominable Form, Imperious Command, Power Attack, Willing Deformity (Madness), Reflexive Psychosis, Cleave, Improved Sunder, Ability Focus (Heat Death)
    Skills: Intimidate +43, Bluff +11, Concentration +19 (+23 casting defensively), Spot +0, Listen +0, Hide +11, Knowledge (Psionics) +3, Craft(Alchemy)+2

    Items: Wings of Flying of Charisma +6 and resistance +5, Gloves of Dexterity +6 and Energy Transformation, Amulet of Health +6, Belt of Giant's Strength +6, +2 Fearsome Mithral chain shirt, +1 Sudden Stunning Longsword (DC 31, 10/day), Hexbands, Hat of Disguise, Eternal Wand of Hound of Doom, Veil of Allure, Tome of Leadership and Influence +1, Ring of Freedom of Movement, Ring of Evasion,

    Spells: 3/day (DC 21)

    1) Protection From Good, Charm Person

    PP: 2/day

    Hexblade's Curse: As previous. DC 26
    Dreadful Wrath: As before, DC 31
    Abominable Form: As before, DC 23
    Heat Death: DC 28
    Conflagration: DC 27

    Combining stacking save penalties with Heat Death results in instakill capacity on many enemies. That DC 28 Heat Death can be combined with a -6 save penalty (shaken, Dark Companion, Aura of Despair), without even cursing, making a very difficult save for even a Balor. Stacking Dark Blessing and Arcane Resistance is utterly brutal, and Ring of Evasion + Mettle rounds out the immunity to most spells. Reflexive Psychosis is effectively DR 5/- any round you have a swift action, and improves survivability a fair bit. Intimidate, of course, is so high that you might be able to scare the Tarrasque.

    With about 400000 gold left over, boosting AC and utility capacity shouldn't be difficult, especially since you can use wands of Blackguard and Hexblade spells.



    Quotebox
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Moron View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Optimystik View Post
    'Adding up numbers' is completely independent of roleplay. What you're saying makes as much sense as "peeling a banana is not a good way to drive."


  12. - Top - End - #222
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Did you see that?
    Quote Originally Posted by Mirage
    Mirage. Killoren Pyrokineticist

    Synopsis
    Spoiler
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    I struggled with a few different concepts before settling on my final choice. After running through a few options, I finally settled on Druid to start off my Pyrokineticist build. I utilised the Sandstorm and Complete mage ACF's to create a Wasteland Druid with a Fire Elemental companion. Much more suitable than my initial Pyro/Blighter concept. Later I use the Arcane Swordsage adaptation in order to aquire a few fire themed arane spells and Desert Wind Maneuvers. For the purpose of optimization, the Caster Levels of these few spells is the characters Initiator Level; the spells are restricted to personal and touch spells from the arcane Abjuration, Evocation and Transmutation schools. These swordsage spells will also aid in later prestige class qualification. I rounded off the remaining free levels with Sorcerer and Arcane Heirophant. The end result is a fey avatar of the desert that stalks the wastes and blasts her foes with fire. One who takes the form of a Brass Dragon during the day, or Shadow Dragon at night.

    The build is presented as a Gish, though it lacks the traditional versatility of a warrior-mage. Obviously, this character focuses on fire and has a number of options available to complement the abilities of Pyrokineticist. Relevant notes are presented with each level snapshot in order to better explain the characters abilities. Unfortunately, due to study, I was unable to finish this build. The basics of each snapshot have been presented, but actual stat blocks have not.

    I would rate this character a solid Tier 4. It has great potential as a skirmisher, but lacks the endurance required for grinding. It has a few strengths outside of combat, but they are rather specialised. If you enjoy the hit and run or kiting playstyle, then you might enjoy this build. Resources used incluse the SRD, Completes, Spell Compendium, Magic item Compendium, Sandstorm, Draconomicon and Races of the Wild. 32 point buy and average HP.

    Level 1
    Mirage, Killoren Druid 1
    Feats: Wild Talent
    Abilities and tactics.
    Mirage has a small Fire Elemental named Sparky as a pet. Sparky loves it when Mirage casts the Raging Flame spell. It makes non magical fires (like Sparky) burn twice as hot. It also means that if Sparky sets something on fire, it burns twice as hot as well. Sparky loves to set things on fire. If enemies get too close to Mirage, she will cast the Sandblast spell. It deals subdual damage and can stun enemies. Sparky is immune to stunning.

    Mirage usually takes the Killoren aspect of the Hunter or Destroyer. As she gains levels, she will take the Aspect of the Destroyer more often.


    Level 5
    Spoiler
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    Mirage, Killoren Druid 4/Swordsage 1
    Feats: Speed of Thought
    Abilities and tactics.
    Sparky is all grown up. He is now a medium sized Fire Elemental. If he can set an object on fire, Mirage will cast the Animate Flame spell and give him a little friend to play with. His fire damage and Burn DC has increased, increasing the potency of the Raging Flame spell, especially when coupled with Mirage's other fire abilities. The benefit of Raging Flame to magical fire is minor, but one point per die can add up over the course of an encounter.

    Mirage has a slightly expanded selection of Druid spells. Flame Blade and Scimitar of Sand are both treated as a scimitar, so they benefit from Mirage's Discipline Focus. Touch Attacks increase the probability of successful manuevers, both spells easily last the duration of a conflict. Produce Flame and Flaming Sphere are other commonly prepared attack spells. Halo of Sand provides only a small bonus to defence, but it has a long duration and can be shared with Sparky.

    Mirage has a number of Martial Adept maneuvers available. A fair mix of boosts, strikes, counters and spells. The Heroics (swordsage) spell allows her to adapt her combat style according to her needs, from offence to defence. It can even grant temporary knowledge of a martial maneuver. It would not be a good idea to loop this ability in a game you enjoy. I suggest that the effect has its duration shortened to curb abuse. Balor Nimbus (swordsage) is great for grappling. Both of these spells can be shared with Sparky, via Mirages Druid ability. The Child of Shadow surrounds Mirage with a concealing, shimmering desert heat as she moves, a reflavoured version of the stance. Her other martial abilities enhance her attacks with flame or allow her to unleash a scorching counter attack on foes that strike her.


    Level 10

    Spoiler
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    Mirage, Killoren Druid 4/Swordsage 1/Pyrokineticist 4/Sorcerer 1
    Feats: Desert Wind Dodge, Scorching Sirocco

    Abilities and Tactics
    Fire lash is typically wielded in the off-hand. This enables Mirage to relase it easily when she needs to cast a spell. If it is treated as a weapon, then she can utilise her martial manuevers with reach. Both of her hands are almost always benefiting from Hands Afire, so she always has an attack ready. Mirage may suppress this ability so as not to damage objects or clothing. Whenever she is weilding a weapon she will typically use Weapons Afire immediately, even on spell produced weapons if possible. The alchemical items she sometimes uses also benefit from this ability. Flaming alchemists fire!

    Bolt of Fire replaces many of Mirage's blast spells. Because of her speed, it is typically used during a surprise round or before closing to melee. It can also be used for kiting some enemies. Due to her passive Fire Adaptation coupled with the Heat Endurance feat, Mirage can freely set a battlefield ablaze with few repercussions to herself. Only immune foes are safe from her flames. Critical Strike and Blades of Fire are swift action Sorcerer spells that can be shared with Sparky, or used to great effect by Mirage alone.

    No new martial maneuvers, but new tactics have become available. Desert Wind Dodge encourages mobile attacks, adding a dodge bonus and fire damage to certain attacks. The Scorching Sirocco tactical feat also encourages mobility. Fan the Flames increases the chances of a target being set on fire after taking fire damage and Mark of Fire gives allies a bonus to strike targets hit repeatedly with fire damage.


    Level 15
    Spoiler
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    Mirage, Druid 4/Swordsage 1/Pyrokineticist 8/Sorcerer 1/Arcane Heirophant 1
    Feats: Natural Spell, Draconic Wild Shape

    Abilities and Tactics
    Nimbus has fantastic utility. DR, Flaming touch attacks, retributive damage and a Charisma bonus. Great in melee combat, beneficial when casting spells, ultilising Smite attacks and it also effects the save DC's of later Pyrokineticist abilities. Firewalk is a situational flight ability. Combined with Longstrider the distance covered is reasonable. Great for setting up a melee charge on a flying opponent, or even walking to safety during a long fall. Unfortunately, Speed of thought requires Psionic Focus, so it wont apply. Also, Power Points are limited, but a power crystal may be able to extend the duration and leave a precious Power Point remaining to reactivate Mirage's Focus. Fear No Fire and Greater Weapon Afire enhance some of Mirage's lower level abilities, doubling their benefits.

    Casting receives a bonus. Dehydrate and Heatstroke are thematic spells. Wild Shape is available, the Natural Spell and Dragon Wild Shape feats allow casting in those forms. Manifesting the majority of your abilities on an animal or dragon form should not be a problem. I can see an ape or dragon using a lash, but it is the DM's discretion whether those tactics are available. Great forms include the Leopard (for charge and grappling), Eagle (overland flight) or the squid (for when Mirage absolutely has to swim). Typically, reserves her use of Wild Shape to take the form of a Brass or Shadow dragon. She gains the extraordinary and supernatural abilities of the form, but is limited to small and medium creatures of the dragon type.


    Level 20

    Spoiler
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    Mirage, Druid 4/Swordsage2/Pyrokineticist 10/
    Sorcerer 1/Arcane Heirophant 3
    Feats: Instant Clarity

    Abilities and Tactics
    Heat death is an at will ability. The Psionic Focus required can be regained a few times via the Instant Clarity feat. This requires a successful attack with a martial manauver. In this way, Heat Death becomes a great opening move for an encounter and Mirage can alternate between Heat Death and Manuevers for the next few rounds.

    Conflagration is a great area of effect power. Only once per day, but a great save or die ability coupled with decent damage. Mirage typically uses Wild Shape in order to position herself for the greatest effect.

    Other abilities at this level include up to 2nd level sorcerer spells, up to 6th level manuevers/swordsage spells, up to 4th level Druid spells and no doubt many consumable magical and alchemical items.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Moron View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Optimystik View Post
    'Adding up numbers' is completely independent of roleplay. What you're saying makes as much sense as "peeling a banana is not a good way to drive."


  13. - Top - End - #223
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Fire for the Fire God!
    Quote Originally Posted by D. Merwin Elbert
    D. Merwin Elbert, CN Human Warmage 4/Swordsage 2/Jade Phoenix Mage 4/Pyrokineticist 10.

    "My life for you!"

    On 32 points: STR 10 DEX 14 CON 12 INT 14 WIS 14 CHA 15
    Always raise CHA with level increases.

    Sources Used:
    Spoiler
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    Player's Handbook (PH), Dungeon Master's Guide (DMG), Expanded Psionics Handbook (XPH), Tome of Battle: The Book of Nine Swords (Bo9S), Complete Arcane (CAr)


    The priest of Syrul rubbed a nervous hand over her newly shaved pate and carefully checked over her inventory one more time. No untreated cloth or paper, no wooden items, special metallic pen and ink reservoir, no oils or flammable unguents, several waterskins, and a spell of Resist Fire freshly prayed for in her mind. Nodding to herself that everything was in order, she looked through the window of the prisoner's stone door, and saw he was seated, curled up, bare as the day he was born, and fidgeting at his ear obsessively, on the stone platform he had to use as a bed. Such were the precautions when dealing with a follower of Pyremius. She unlocked his cell and walked inside, forcing a calm smile to her face.

    "Good morning, Donny. I'm Fabulist Engstrom. I'll be working with you to get you well enough to go home again."

    The prisoner's gaze darted frantically around the cell, searching for something neither Fabulist Engstrom nor he seemed likely to spot. He continued to fidget at his ear, rocking back and forth as he spoke, his a voice a raspy ruin from regular exposure to heat and smoke.

    "Morning? Good, good morning. Name is Merwin, not Donny. Not, not Donny. Don't call me Donny. Name is Merwin. Merwin, yes. You're not Fabulist Lawry. Where's Fabulist Lawry? We were, I mean I was talking, talking with Fabulist Lawry before. Where's Fabulist Lawry? Morning, good morning. Bumpty bump."

    Fabulist Engstrom watched the prisoner's restless eyes and took a deep breath to keep herself calm.

    "Fabulist Lawry can't come see you anymore. Remember? You got a little agitated the last time the two of you talked? You had a little moment? All of her notes and some of her skin caught fire, Merwin, so she won't be coming back to talk to you again. We don't want to get you upset. We'll have to start from the beginning again, though, with her notes gone. Is that all right?"

    Tell her it's all right, Merwin.

    Merwin nodded like a marionette whose puppeteer had a sneezing fit.

    "Says it's all right. It's all right. I mean, it's all right. All right. Bumpty bump."

    "Who says, Merwin? Is it Flagg? Is he still talking to you, even in here, Merwin?"

    You fool! Don't tell her you can still hear me! She'll try to separate us!

    Merwin gave a tiny shriek and started to chew at a fingernail already bitten down to the quick.

    "Nobody says. I say. I say. Just me. Not Flagg. Flagg's not here. Not here. Gone. I say. Bumpty bump."

    "Okay, Merwin. I believe you," Fabulist Engstrom said hurriedly, as she noted his increased distress. "Let's just start at the beginning, okay? Why don't we just start with you talking about how you got your start as a firebug; will that be all right with you?"

    Merwin gave another spastic nod in mute reply.

    "As far back as I can remember. I can remember. I remember. Fire. Beautiful dancing fire. Warm fire. So pretty," he smiled, his eyes taking on a faraway cast as if watching a memory. His hands stilled, finally, and settled across his bare lap. "I was just a thug then. A thug then. Specialized thief's muscle. A thug. Said I was adaptable. Adaptable. Said I had a spark. Spark. Like fire. Even then I used fire. Called it. Called it to my falchion. Mine. Nobody else's. Mine. Made fire flash in their eyes. Dazzled them. Dazzled by fire. Surrounded by it. So pretty. Used cold, too, some. Just in case. In case. Not as pretty..."

    At 1st level:
    Spoiler
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    Swordsage 1. Feats: Adaptive Style (Bo9S 28), Wild Talent (XPH 52); Bonus Feats: Weapon Focus: Desert Wind Weapons (Bo9S). Skills: Concentration 4, Craft (alchemy) 4, Heal 1, Intimidate 4, Knowledge (arcana) 2, Knowledge (history) 2, Knowledge (psionics) 2, Knowledge (religion) 2, Spellcraft 2, Swim 1, Tumble 4. Armor: Leather. Weapons: Falchion, Spear, Light Mace. Maneuvers/Stances: Blistering Flourish (Bo9S 52), Burning Blade (Bo9S 52), Distracting Ember (Bo9S 52), Counter Charge (Bo9S 71), Shadow Blade Technique (Bo9S 78), Stone Bones (Bo9S 84)/Step of the Wind (Bo9S 74).

    BAB +0. F: +1 R: +4 W: +4.

    Despite average STR and no BAB, Merwin fills the role of a front-liner at 1st level. His weapon choices and foci, abilities to augment damage with fire and cold energy like a minor caster, and ability to create Sneak Attack options for his partners make him an ideal candidate for runs where stealth and quickness are more prized than heavy armor, a big group, or a traditional melee and arcane type.


    "Then there was the War College. Very dangerous. War College. Dangerous. Bad. Bad idea. Shouldn't have tried to take money. Take money from War College. It was dangerous. Very bad. Didn't work. They left me!" Merwin screamed in anguish, but continued. "Drafted. I was drafted. They said I was drafted to the War College. Gonna learn to be a Warmage. Had to learn to concentrate very hard. Very hard. Learn and practice. Practice, practice, practice all the time. It was good, though. Taught me how to use a shield. I got a shiny steel shield with a painted flame on it. So nice. Taught me more about fire. Beautiful. Warm. Dancing and warm. So beautiful. I made it. And other things too. I... I made acid and stone and cold again. Don't like cold. Don't. Useful. Still don't like. Made sounds and little lightning too. The sparks were pretty. They danced a little like fire. Beautiful warm dancing fire. The sparks. Like the spark they said was in me. Bumpty bump."

    Fabulist Engstrom scribbled as quickly as she could across the treated skins with her metal pen. "Is that when Flagg started talking to you, Merwin?"

    You can answer, Merwin. It's ancient history now. It won't tear the two of us apart. We need each other, don't we, Merwin?

    Merwin gulped audibly and nodded.

    "Yes. Came to me at the War College. While I concentrated. Concentrated and practiced and focused. Focused very very hard and one day Flagg was there. I could hear him. Just me. Said I'm special. Said he was the voice of my spark. Said he was helpful. It's true! Helpful. Sometimes I would get flustered. Flustered. Concentrating so hard. Flagg would just, just step in for me. Speak for me. Through me. Calm me. Help me focus. Help me concentrate. Flagg is helpful. Told me I was special. Had a special purpose. Told me I should teach those thieves. They left me, you know. Left me! Ran away! I went back to them. I did. I went back and I pretended and Flagg helped and I learned more sneaking. I learned. Then I taught them. I. Me. Taught them. Thanks to Flagg. Went to their armory and I taught them. I burned it. Burned it to the ground. Watched, too. So pretty. Beautiful, dancing fire. Then we went back to the War College. Flagg and I. He was with me from then on. With me. My friend. Helpful Flagg. Bumpty bump."

    At 5th level:
    Spoiler
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    Swordsage 1/Warmage 2/Swordsage +1/Warmage +1.STR 10 DEX 14 CON 12 INT 14 WIS 14 CHA 16. Feat: Practiced Spellcaster (Warmage)(CAr 82). Skills: Concentration 8, Craft (alchemy) 5, Heal 1, Intimidate 5, Knowledge (arcana) 8, Knowledge (history) 4, Knowledge (psionics) 2.5, Knowledge (religion) 4, Spellcraft 6, Swim 1, Tumble 5. Armor: Leather +1, Small Steel Shield +1. Weapons: +1 Spear, MW Falchion, MW Light Mace. Maneuvers/Stances: Wind Stride (Bo9S 56)/Child of Shadow (Bo9S 76). Advanced Learning Spell: Tenser's Floating Disk.

    BAB: +2. F: +2 R: +6 W: +8.

    Merwin's Warmage training couple with his WIS to AC benefit in light armor to give a decent little + 3 boost to AC before magic, at a point where AC is still valuable, and Child of Shadow further improves his defenses. He fills out the prerequisites for Pyrokineticist even as his role in the party shifts from front-liner to hard-hitting melee skirmisher, never losing focus on his damaging maneuver/spell choices. If the party needs it, his Warmage spells couple reasonably with his own mobility to do some decent battlefield control, though that's less a primary role than a job he can fill in a pinch.


    By now Fabulist Engstrom recognized Merwin's speech patterns enough to sense a break in his monologue. "What about the whip, Merwin? When did you start being able to call the whip?"

    Merwin grinned manically. "After I went back to the War College. Flagg got it for me. For me. For a present. When I was good and when I had learned. When I didn't tell about the armory. Flagg said he made it. Made it for me. Just for me. For being good. Flagg helped with the whip. Helped control it. Flagg's my friend. Taught me how to make fires with the whip. It dances too. Dances like the fires. Learned to make fire explode so the people would dance. Spent more time playing with the whip. Learned to make the beautiful fire dance on my hand, too. Then, Flagg said not to forget the Warmages. Said they were still useful. Said they had another trick to teach. Wise Flagg. Learned that next trick. I did. Flagg said I did good. Said now I could be one of the thirteen. Said I could be Jade Phoenix like he once was. Phoenix is a bird, Fabulist Engstrom. A bird on fire. Me. A bird on fire. Made me even better with the whip. It did. Smarter too. Jade Pheonix made me smart. Smart and better. Very fast. Faster than before. Better with magic, better with fire. Better with lightning, too. Flagg said lightning was important. Important. It burns without fire."

    At 10th level:
    Spoiler
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    Swordsage 2/Warmage 3/Pyrokineticist 2/Warmage +1/JPM 2. STR 10 DEX 14 CON 12 INT 14 WIS 14 CHA 17. Feats: Explosive Spell (CAr 79), Energy Substitution: electricity (CAr 79). Skills: Concentration 13, Craft (alchemy) 5, Heal 1, Intimidate 5, Jump 4, Knowledge (arcana) 9, Knowledge (history) 5, Knowledge (psionics) 5, Knowledge (religion) 4, Spellcraft 8, Swim 1, Tumble 5. Armor: Leather +1, Cold Resistance. Small Steel Manifester Shield +1. Weapons: Spear +1, Light Mace +1, MW Falchion. Maneuvers: Flashing Sun (Bo9S 54).

    BAB: +6/+1. F: +8 R: +9 W: +9

    Merwin enters into Pyrokineticist at level 5, the earliest entry without rules abuse. The fact that fire lash is a touch attack makes non-proficiency almost a non-issue. As written, as a ranged touch attack, his DEX is even more helpful. Flashing Sun's extra attack couples well with the fire lash's reach and the Explosive Spell feat to strengthen Merwin's battlefield control, and Hand Afire comes in handy if someone tries to grapple him. The Pyrokineticist and JPM levels shore up Merwin's saving throws. The manifester property on the shield is an investmet for the future. With JPM's Arcane Wrath, the -4 non-proficiency penalty for the fire lash can be completely averted by losing a single spell slot, which will also get even better damage for the attack. As written, Merwin could drop a 0-level spell just for the +4 to hit bonus with his fire lash, which is at least situationally useful. Access to 2nd level spells drastically improves Merwin's damage output, while Energy Substitution allows him to use an uncommon type - electricity - as foes start to have some of the same resistances he's able to manifest. While he's switched primarily to spear + shield for his weaponry, Whirling Blade with a Falchion does nicely against flame retardant enemies. Merwin's varied knowledge skills and decent INT combo reasonably with the Rite of Waking for a limited sage role, while the fact that Warmage is a CHA caster creates some synergies with Pyrokineticist's abilities.


    "Flagg said as one of the thirteen I didn't need the War College anymore. Said I was ready. Said I was strong. Needed to show it. Show him. Show how strong I was. Strong with the fire. The beautiful dancing fire and the whip that danced and burned in my hand. Flagg needed me to set fires. Me. Flagg needed me. To set fires. My life's work in beauty. In heat. In flame. I owed Flagg. Owed him so, so much. Burn the world for him. My life for him. Went to a small town to set fires. Saw a water tower. Got scared. Scared. Thought my fire, my wonderful fire and whip, would be stopped. Flagg knew better. Wise Flagg. Took over for me and danced the lightning into the tower so it exploded. KABOOM! Tower fell down and Flagg started. Started burning, through me. The whole town. Lovely fires dancing everywhere, so warm. Not warm enough to hurt me, though. Not with Flagg. Flagg tapped into the fire. Made it shoot from my hands. Fire, fired. Good joke, huh? Made the Falchion burn in my hands. Didn't hurt me, though. Not with Flagg. Set my whole body ablaze in the beauty of fire. It was wonderful.

    "Then I learned more. Flagg must have taught me. Must have. Great, wise Flagg. Taught me to run. Run on the fire in the air. The air on fire. Can you imagine? Taught me to combine hitting with burning in new ways. Special ways. Taught me to focus better. Taught me to hit harder when I ran with fire, so I left the ground and danced on fiery air. Taught me to really jump. I learned. I learned well. Learned for Flagg. Wise Flagg. My life for him. Bumpty bump."

    At 15th level:
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    Swordsage 2/Warmage 4/Pyrokineticist 2/JPM 2/Pyrokineticist + 3/JPM +2. STR 10 DEX 14 CON 16 INT 14 WIS 14 CHA 22 (26 in Nimbus). CON +4 and CHA +4 items used. Feats: Psionic Meditation (XPH 50), Sudden Still (CAr 83). Skills: Concentration 18, Craft (alchemy) 5, Heal 1, Intimidate 5, Jump 14, Knowledge (arcana) 9, Knowledge (history) 5, Knowledge (psionics) 5, Knowledge (religion) 4, Spellcraft 13, Swim 1, Tumble 5. Armor: +1 Cold Resistance. Small Steel Manifester Shield + 1, Electrical Resistance. Weapons: +1 Collision Acidic Spear, +1 Cold Iron Light Mace, MW Silver Falchion. Maneuvers: Searing Charge (Bo9S 56).

    BAB: +10/+5 F: +13 R: +11 W: +11

    The damage is really adding up here. Searing Charge with the spear for 1d8+ 5 + 1d6 Acid +7d6 Fire damage on the first attack, assuming no STR buff. Add in the Empowering Strike ability of JPM 4 to empower the spell cast before the end of next round; empowered Poison, as a good choice against a single target, or empowered Ice Storm, to damage more foes while doing some battlefield control. Bolt of Fire and Searing Charge mean that the various Orb spells previously held in reserve to deal with unexpected flyers can be expended to add damage to weapon strikes via Arcane Wrath. Sudden still is the choice on the off-chance that someone immune to the Nimbus ability gets inside Merwin's Fire Lash, while psionic meditation prepares for the Fire Walk ability that comes online at 16th. The Nimbus ability also makes those empowered spells harder to resist thanks to the CHA increase. The variety of different damage types Merwin can do at this point means he's inconvenienced, but not crippled, against fire immune opponents, and he can still do battlefield control to a degree. Defensively, his saving throws are universally decent, if not spectacular, and easily buffed with a Cloak of Resistance, while he can still generate concealment for himself through his Child of Shadow ability, or through creative use of his spells.


    Fabulist Engstrom watched Merwin carefully. His manic gaze had stopped flitting around the room, and was settled on her with a curious intensity. She felt a hint of an itchy, nervous sweat start to steal over her as she, the examiner, was examined.

    "The whole town didn't burn, did it, Merwin?" she asked, her throat surprisingly dry.

    "The whole town? I don't know. Don't know. Town's enchanter got inside my head somehow. Somehow. Where only Flagg had been with me. Made Flagg go quiet. I got scared. Very scared. Flagg was my friend and he was quiet! They made him go away! They can't DO THAT! CAN'T! NOT ALLOWED! HAVE TO SAVE FLAGG! MY LIFE FOR YOU!"

    By the time it took Fabulist Engstrom to incant the Fire Resistance spell in her memory, it was too late. Flagg set her blood boiling out of her skin, for a gruesome death as he engulfed his naked frame in flames, and the metallic walls started to turn cherry-red from the heat.

    "My life for you..." he whispered.

    At 20th level:
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    Swordsage 2/Warmage 4/JPM 4/Pyrokineticist 10. STR 10 DEX 14 CON 18 INT 14 WIS 14 CHA 26 (30 in Nimbus). CON and CHA reflect +6 item boosts. Feat: Desert Fire (Bo9S 29). Skills: Concentration 23, Craft (alchemy) 5, Heal 1, Intimidate 6, Jump 23, Knowledge (arcana) 9, Knowledge (history) 5, Knowledge (psionics) 5, Knowledge (religion) 4, Spellcraft 18, Swim 1, Tumble 5. Armor: Leather +1 Manifester; Cold Resistance; Small Steel Shield +1 Manifester, Electrical Resistance. Weapons: +1 Collision Dislocator Acidic Spear, +1 Cold Iron Light Mace, +1 Silver Falchion.

    BAB +14/+9/+4 F: +16 R: +14 W: +13


    Merwin saved his copper pieces to invest in the Manifester property for these levels. Lacking more than a couple power points of his own, he uses the Manifester items plus a Rainbow Ioun Stone for enough PP to consistently utilize his Firewalk ability. The ability to quickly regain psionic focus, paid with the 15th level feat, is important at these levels, as Firewalk and Heat Death both require its expenditure. Good saves couple with concealment and DR to provide real defenses at a level where AC is rarely worthwhile. Merwin takes the Desert Fire feat mostly for thematic reasons at this stage, as there's little that is both susceptible to his attacks and capable of surviving long against them. Maximizing Jump checks just provides a little extra mileage on Firewalk and Searing Charge. Conflagration can be used to change the battlefield on multiple levels, from creating impassable heat to melting away the walls or floors as he sees fit.


    If flaws are used:
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    With flaws in play, Merwin takes Non-combatant if the DM rules with the RAW that Fire Lash is a ranged touch. Vulnerable is the second choice, regardless. With these flaws, Merwin buys Exotic Weapon Proficiency: Whip along with Energy Substitution: electricity, increasing his options and damage output at crucial low levels and freeing up space for Arcane Disciple or Knowledge Devotion if allowed a larger source list.
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    'Adding up numbers' is completely independent of roleplay. What you're saying makes as much sense as "peeling a banana is not a good way to drive."


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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    That's the last of 'em! On your mark, get set, judge!
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    'Adding up numbers' is completely independent of roleplay. What you're saying makes as much sense as "peeling a banana is not a good way to drive."


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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Interesting. I see a build that contains a few things I had considered including.

    MiLaash could have been cheesed out with Unseelie Fey. I guess that was a bit too much, though, especially from a source as risky as Dragon Compendium.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    I'll judge them properly later, as I've got something to go do. HOWEVER, I do note someone used Cryokineticist, which was ruled illegal early on, as it's a variant, and this contest is about Pyrokineticist, not the variant rules that surround it.

    All that I say applies only to myself. You author your own actions and choices. I cannot and will not be responsible for you, nor are you for me, regardless of situation or circumstance.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Quote Originally Posted by arguskos View Post
    I'll judge them properly later, as I've got something to go do. HOWEVER, I do note someone used Cryokineticist, which was ruled illegal early on, as it's a variant, and this contest is about Pyrokineticist, not the variant rules that surround it.
    Arguskos: Actualy Cyokinetist is also a separate prestige class found in Frostburn, it is similar to pyrokinetist
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Quote Originally Posted by arguskos View Post
    HOWEVER, I do note someone used Cryokineticist, which was ruled illegal early on, as it's a variant, and this contest is about Pyrokineticist, not the variant rules that surround it.
    Did they use a variant or the official class from Frostburn?

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Quote Originally Posted by arguskos View Post
    I'll judge them properly later, as I've got something to go do. HOWEVER, I do note someone used Cryokineticist, which was ruled illegal early on, as it's a variant, and this contest is about Pyrokineticist, not the variant rules that surround it.
    I thought that at first, too, so I double checked. There is in fact a Cryokineticist class (Frostburn 54) that the entry uses. It is actually legal.

    Edit: Double ninja'd.
    Last edited by Private-Prinny; 2010-07-23 at 09:12 PM.
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    'Adding up numbers' is completely independent of roleplay. What you're saying makes as much sense as "peeling a banana is not a good way to drive."


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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Quote Originally Posted by The Vorpal Tribble View Post
    Did they use a variant or the official class from Frostburn?
    That is REALLY confusing.

    EDIT: Prinny, if you say so. That's... actually kinda aggravating, but at least it's a legal entry. Perhaps better marking was in order.
    Last edited by arguskos; 2010-07-23 at 09:14 PM.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Interestingly enough, the Cryokineticist actually has slightly stricter entry requirements. And taking both requires the Ordered Chaos feat (which the build uses) or similar.

    Pyro:
    Alignment: Any chaotic.

    Skills:
    Concentration 8 ranks, Craft (alchemy) 1 rank, Knowledge (psionics) 2 ranks.

    Psionics:
    Must have a power point reserve of at least 1 power point.

    Special:
    Must have set fire to a structure of any size just to watch it burn.

    Cryo:
    Alignment: Any lawful.

    Skills:
    Concentration 8 ranks, Craft (alchemy) 1 rank, Knowledge (psionics) 2 ranks.

    Psionics:
    Able to manifest the energy emanation power.
    Last edited by senrath; 2010-07-23 at 09:18 PM.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Quote Originally Posted by arguskos View Post
    That is REALLY confusing.
    There's a 'variant' rule for all energy types to replace fire, which you mentioned, and then an 'official' PrC that isn't a variant, but an individual PrC in it's own right.
    Last edited by The Vorpal Tribble; 2010-07-23 at 09:20 PM.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Quote Originally Posted by The Vorpal Tribble View Post
    There's a 'variant' rule for all energy which you mentioned, and then an 'official' PrC that isn't a variant, but one in it's own right.
    I am not thick, and can read what it is you wrote.

    However, the fact that an entry used the official PrC Cryokineticist in an optimization contest about Pyrokineticist that has a well-known energy variant rule and didn't mark it well is pretty damn confusing at first blush, wouldn't you say?

    All that I say applies only to myself. You author your own actions and choices. I cannot and will not be responsible for you, nor are you for me, regardless of situation or circumstance.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Quote Originally Posted by arguskos View Post
    However, the fact that an entry used the official PrC Cryokineticist in an optimization contest about Pyrokineticist that has a well-known energy variant rule and didn't mark it well is pretty damn confusing at first blush, wouldn't you say?
    It could be, yeah.

    I'm a psionics fanatic so knew well about Cryo so didn't occur to me that it might be a variant till you mentioned it (the variant isn't as well known to me as the official. I took one look at the variant years ago and rolled my eyes).

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Quote Originally Posted by The Vorpal Tribble View Post
    It could be, yeah.

    I'm a psionics fanatic so knew well about Cryo so didn't occur to me that it might be a variant till you mentioned it (the variant isn't as well known to me as the official. I took one look at the variant years ago and rolled my eyes).
    The variant comes up frequently when the class is mentioned, recommending that folks swap Pyro out for Sono- (sonic damage), to get around resistance/immunities.

    All that I say applies only to myself. You author your own actions and choices. I cannot and will not be responsible for you, nor are you for me, regardless of situation or circumstance.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    I notice that none of them found any way to bypass immunity/resistance to fire. Saw a lot of Swordsage, which was rather a given, and Rogue for the Whip proficiency, which was also a given.

    My idea, if I wasn't swallowed by RL this past week, would have been a Soulknife/Pyro, using the ACF to trade in Psychic Strike for Bonus Feats. Use the Whip to trip, then go to town, dual-wielding whip and mindblade. With his one power being Expansion, going to a Large size means he threatens 5' and 10' with his Mindblade, and threatens 15' with his whip, so he still has full coverage.

    Bladewind + Greater Weapon Afire + other bonus damage = all opponents get hurt badly

    Bolt of Fire is also a useful RTA against opponents he cannot close with. Comparable damage with a Warlock, anyways, as long as it doesn't go HFW.

    Collision is a fun ability, and will probably be his standard enhancement, however if he knows his opponents are going to be well buffed, Suppression is the flavor of the day. On the rare occasions that he faces off against psionic opponents, he may use Mindcrusher.

    The only thing I couldn't figure out was how to bypass fire immunity.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Ooh-- the builds look nice. I'm going to try to get some time to look at them closer, even though I won't be able to judge them in a reasonable time-frame this round.

    I didn't have time to compete in this one, but I did toy a bit with the concept of PsiWar5/Pyro5/Shadowsmith5 using the using the recommended adaptation of a fire theme for Shadowsmith and a smoke theme for the mysteries. I think it would have panned out as low tier 3.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Quote Originally Posted by ShneekeyTheLost View Post
    The only thing I couldn't figure out was how to bypass fire immunity.
    *coughMICpg102cough*

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    Quote Originally Posted by ShneekeyTheLost View Post
    and Rogue for the Whip proficiency, which was also a given.
    Except, um, Rogues aren't proficient with whips. AFAIK, Bard is the only class that gets whip proficiency out of the box.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge VIII

    My other builds were pretty varied.

    Had a human ex druid/pyro/blighter/natures warrior. Flaming undead Dire Tiger silliness.

    Thri-kreen Fighter/Ranger/Battle Trickster/Pyro. Multi attack and multiweapon fighting chains. Had something like 17 attacks on a full attack. 14 fire lash, 2 tentacles and a bite.

    Derro wilder/Pyro

    and finally, a Gityanki shadowmind/pyro concept. Could not find a way to fit in levels of mindspy though.

    As an aside, I'm not sure that the Ordered Chaos feat works the way people thinks it does. I was going to use it for Kensai on one of my builds, but noticed that it only allows you to be considered chaotic for Abyssal Heritor feats. Was there some errata or something?
    Last edited by WinWin; 2010-07-24 at 02:50 AM.

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