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  1. - Top - End - #91
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Amphetryon's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Character submitted.
    Iron Chef in the Playground veteran since Round IV.

    Who made my awesome Dwarf Hexblade avatar, you ask? BRC did!
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  2. - Top - End - #92
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    HalflingPirate

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Not me. I found a concept that fluff-wise blended well with AL, but as I built it, I realized that it would be mechanically better with 9-10 less levels of AL.

    One of these days, Gadget, one of these days...

  3. - Top - End - #93
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Amphetryon's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by dextercorvia View Post
    Not me. I found a concept that fluff-wise blended well with AL, but as I built it, I realized that it would be mechanically better with 9-10 less levels of AL.
    It was rather difficult to overcome that particular issue...
    Iron Chef in the Playground veteran since Round IV.

    Who made my awesome Dwarf Hexblade avatar, you ask? BRC did!
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  4. - Top - End - #94
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    OMG PONIES's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Tell me about it! I'm finalizing my submission, and I'm still thinking of so many better things I could take at each level of animal lord.

  5. - Top - End - #95
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Builds are posted today right? I always experience math fail when trying to figure out time differences.

  6. - Top - End - #96
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    RedWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Bleah. Dropping out. I stress too much over these, and can't create a decent backstory today.

  7. - Top - End - #97
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Amphetryon's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by WinWin View Post
    Builds are posted today right? I always experience math fail when trying to figure out time differences.
    Roughly 4.5 hours from this posting, unless Prinny chooses to delay or speed things up.
    Iron Chef in the Playground veteran since Round IV.

    Who made my awesome Dwarf Hexblade avatar, you ask? BRC did!
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  8. - Top - End - #98
    Troll in the Playground
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    I'm dropping out, too. None of the builds I came up with did anything especially clever, and the only one that actually received notable benefit from the Animal Lord levels only needed 3, and could only take 6. Eh. Maybe next time.

  9. - Top - End - #99
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    The Vorpal Tribble's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Y'all are depressing me. Fluff wise there is so much fun to be had with this

  10. - Top - End - #100
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    OMG PONIES's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Character submitted. Prinny, let me know if I need to change anything. Nervously awaiting the start of judging.

  11. - Top - End - #101
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    Keld Denar's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Mwa hah hah hah haaaaaaaaaaa!!!!

    I heard if you die in Iron Optimization, you die IRL...

    All your soul are belong to judges(me)!
    Quote Originally Posted by Fax Celestis View Post
    AILHAY THULUCAY! AILHAY THULUCAY! AILHAY THULUCAY!
    _________________________________
    A beholder’s favorite foods include small live mammals, exotic mushrooms and other fungi, gnomes, beef, pork, colorful leafy vegetables, leaves, flower petals, insects, and birds.

  12. - Top - End - #102
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Thanks for the easier time translation.

    I doubt my character would be regarded as powerful, but I did have fun coming up with a build. I just tried to make something I would use in a game and took the concept from there. I thought of Animal Lord as a specialist Ranger rather than a watered down Druid, so the features of Animal Lord were a gain...kinda. Had an easier time with this than Pyrokineticist.

  13. - Top - End - #103
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    Draz74's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Build submitted.
    You can call me Draz.
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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.

  14. - Top - End - #104
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    Private-Prinny's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    And now it's time for the Big Reveal! Please do not post until I give the word.
    Last edited by Private-Prinny; 2010-08-09 at 08:25 PM.
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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."


  15. - Top - End - #105
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Those statues are doomed.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bertram Urrni
    Bertram Urrni, NE Raptoran Scout 2/Cleric of Malar 1/Druid 3/Cancer Mage 4/Birdlord 10

    “They think I’m just a pigeon? Handle pigeons with care.”

    SOURCES
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    Player’s Handbook (skills, Great Fortitude feat, Toughness feat), Complete Adventurer (scout class, animal lord prestige class), Complete Warrior (Zen Archery feat), Races of the Wild (Raptoran race, Improved Flight feat), Races of the Dragon (Wing Expert feat), Book of Vile Darkness (Poison Immunity feat, cancer mage prestige class), Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting (Malar religion fluff).


    STR 8 DEX 10 CON 14 INT 14 WIS 18 CHA 10. Boost WIS with levels.

    Bertran Urrni
    {table=head]Level|Class|Base Attack[br]Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Skills|Feats|Class Features

    1st|Scout 1|
    +0
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |Concentration 2, Disable Device 2, Handle Animal 2, Heal 2, Hide 4, Knowledge (nature) 4, Listen 4, Move Silently 4, Search 2, Spot 4, Survival 4|Toughness|Skirmish +1d6/+0, Trapfinding

    2nd|Cleric 1|
    +0
    |
    +4
    |
    +2
    |
    +4
    |Concentration 3, Heal 3, Move Silently 5|-|Animal Domain, Strength Domain, Rebuke Undead x3, Spells

    3rd|Scout 2|
    +1
    |
    +7
    |
    +3
    |
    +4
    |Concentration 3, Handle Animal 3, Hide 6, Listen 5, Move Silently 6, Spot 5, Survival 5|Great Fortitude|Battle Fortitude +1, Uncanny Dodge

    4th|Druid 1|
    +1
    |
    +9
    |
    +3
    |
    +6
    |Handle Animal 4, Listen 6, Move Silently 6.5, Spot 6, Survival 6|-|Wild Empathy, Spontaneous Casting (Summon Nature’s Ally), Nature Sense, Animal Companion (Eagle)

    5th|Druid 2|
    +2
    |
    +10
    |
    +3
    |
    +7
    |Concentration 6, Listen 7, Move Silently 7, Spot 7, Survival 7|-|Woodland Stride

    6th|Druid 3|
    +3
    |
    +10
    |
    +4
    |
    +7
    |Concentration 8, Knowledge (nature) 5, Listen 8, Spot 8, Survival 8|Poison Immunity (large scorpion poison)|Trackless Step

    7th|Cancer Mage 1|
    +3
    |
    +12
    |
    +6
    |
    +7
    |Concentration 9, Handle Animal 5, Hide 7, Listen 9, Move Silently 8, Spot 9|-|Sneak Attack +1d6, Disease Host (Warp Touch)

    8th|Cancer Mage 2|
    +4
    |
    +13
    |
    +7
    |
    +8
    |Concentration 10, Handle Animal 6, Hide 8, Listen 10, Move Silently 11, Spot 10|-|Contagion, Cancerous Companion, Blindsight 30’

    9th|Cancer Mage 3|
    +5
    |
    +13
    |
    +7
    |
    +9
    |Concentration11, Handle Animal 7, Hide 9, Move Silently 12|Improved Flight|Tatteredemalion, Poison, Quicken Spell 1/Day*

    10th|Birdlord 1|
    +6/+1
    |
    +15
    |
    +9
    |
    +9
    |Hide 10, Listen 11, Move Silently 13, Spot 11, Survival 10|-|Animal Bond, Detect Birds, Wild Empathy

    11th|Birdlord 2|
    +7/+2
    |
    +16
    |
    +10
    |
    +9
    |Hide 11, Listen 12, Move Silently 14, Spot 12. Survival 12|-|First Totem (+4 Spot), Low-light Vision

    12th|Cancer Mage 4|
    +8/+3
    |
    +17
    |
    +11
    |
    +9
    |Hide 12, Listen 14, Move Silently 15, Spot 14, Survival 13|Zen Archery|Children of The Night, Evasion

    13th|Birdlord 3|
    +9/+4
    |
    +17
    |
    +11
    |
    +10
    |Hide 13, Listen 15, Move Silently 16, Spot 15, Survival 15|-|Wild Aspect 1/Day

    14th|Birdlord 4|
    +10/+5
    |
    +18
    |
    +12
    |
    +10
    |Hide 14, Listen 16, Move Silently 17, Spot 16, Survival 17|-|Speak with Animals

    15th|Birdlord 5|
    +11/+6/+1
    |
    +18
    |
    +12
    |
    +11
    |Hide 15, Listen 17, Move Silently 18, Spot 18, Survival 18|Mobile Spellcasting|Summon Animal

    16th|Birdlord 6|
    +12/+7/+2
    |
    +19
    |
    +13
    |
    +13
    |Hide 16, Listen 19, Move Silently 19, Spot 19, Survival 19|Flyby Attack|Second Totem, Wild Aspect 2/Day

    17th|Birdlord 7|
    +13/+8/+3
    |
    +19
    |
    +13
    |
    +13
    |Hide 17, Listen 20, Move Silently 20, Spot 20, Survival 20|-|Animal Growth

    18th|Birdlord 8|
    +14/+9/+4
    |
    +20
    |
    +14
    |
    +13
    |Hide 18, Listen 21, Move Silently 21, Spot 21, Survival 21|Wing Expert|Animal Telepathy

    19th|Birdlord 9|
    +15/+10/+5
    |
    +20
    |
    +14
    |
    +14
    |Hide 19. Listen 22, Move Silently 22, Spot 22, Survival 22|-|Wild Aspect 3/Day

    20th|Birdlord 10|
    +16/+11/+6/+1
    |
    +21
    |
    +15
    |
    +16
    |Hide 20, Listen 23, Move Silently 23, Spot 23, Survival 23|-|Third Totem[/table]*Quicken Spell obtained virtually through Cancerous Companion’s ability
    Spells per day/Spells Known
    {table=head]Level|0lvl|1st|2nd|3rd|4th|5th|6th|7th|8th|9th

    1st|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    2nd|3+1|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    3rd|3+1|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    4th|3+1//3|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    5th|3+1//4|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    6th|3+1//4|//2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    7th|3+1//4|//2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    8th|3+1//4|//2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    9th|3+1//4|//2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    10th|3+1//4|//2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    11th|3+1//4|//2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    12th|3+1//4|//2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    13th|3+1//4|//2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    14th|3+1//4|//2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    15th|3+1//4|//2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    16th|3+1//4|//2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    17th|3+1//4|//2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    18th|3+1//4|//2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    19th|3+1//4|//2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-

    20th|3+1//4|//2|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-[/table]Key: Cleric Spells//Druid Spells

    So, you want to know about me? Careful what you wish for there, pal. All right, fine, I’ve got some time to kill. What is it you want to know? How I got started down this path, and how I ended up as the wondrous being you see before you today, I suspect. Grab a snack; this could take a while.

    When I first left the nest I had a real explorer’s spirit. I had what my parents called a smattering of knowledge, rather than any sort of real direction toward a future. I was trained to be a scout, but I’m a Raptoran, so an outdoorsy sort of scout, you know? I had only a passing knowledge of how to search out traps or deactivate all those nasty surprises enterprising folks put on their treasure chests as deterrents. I was even nice enough to tell that very thing to the first boss to hire me on a treasure hunt, but do you think she listened? Nah, she just sent the freak with the feathers ahead to make sure everything was hunky dory for the flight-impaired. Naturally, I missed a needle on a lock and got pricked with it. It made me feel weaker than a hatchling, and that tavern wench of a boss told the others I was good as dead and should be left there. I thought I was going to die, truth to tell.

    Spoiler
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    At first level, Bertram is a recon and nature focused skirmisher. With Toughness and a decent CON, he takes a bit more of a beating than most in his role, while the high WIS shores up his low Will save. His basic role in a party is just to scout ahead, get a feel for the lay of the land, and report back so the group can be prepared. His skirmish ability largely makes up for his low STR to let him handle surprises while he’s apart from the group.

    Lucky for me, there was a cleric of Malar trailing along behind us. He never did explain why someone whose god teaches “survival of the fittest” chose to drag my sorry backside to the safety of his clergy, but I’m not going to complain that he decided to do just that, even if I don’t see the point. He told me that it looked like I’d been hit with the venom from a large scorpion. I was grateful enough to join up with the church of Malar for a while, if you can believe that. I can’t say I really took to it so well, though. They were always trying to get me to “spread the word of Malar to the masses,” whatever that meant. It was just too much hassle dealing with all those needy hangers-on for my taste. Before long, I was back working at scouting. I got a little quicker, and a whole lot hardier, thanks to my time with those priests and then continuing to find work as a scout, but not hardy enough. That second stint as a scout saw me come down with filth fever. Once I recovered, I decided that was just about enough as a traditional scout for me. I figured any more time spent as a scout and I’d end up spewing out a kidney or something. Not my style, you know?

    So, I figured maybe those nature boys and girls who worked as Malarites were on to something. It was just all the proselytizing that wasn’t for me. Solitary practitioner was more my speed, and meant I wasn’t going to have any other land-bound types expecting me to do their bidding. Druid seemed just about my speed. It got me Goldy, too. She’s the eagle I keep as a companion. The wingless types around the Nelanther Isles started to treat me as a bit of a pariah around this point, between the stories about me being poisoned and the obvious results of filth fever. I figured, if they thought they needed to avoid me, the least I could do was look to make it worth their while.

    Spoiler
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    At 5th level, Bertram plays similarly to a ranger of his level with bad combat skills, minor spellcasting abilities and an eagle animal companion. He and the eagle combine to cover a ton of ground when doing recon work for the party because of their ability to fly off in different directions at once. Being unimpeded by difficult terrain means he doesn’t need to stay in the air to stay mobile. Thrice daily Turn Undead and the ability to speak with animals add to that recon ability to provide reasons why a group would put up with his BAB lagging behind the typical expectations for his role if he’s emulating a ranger for the party. Great Fortitude at 3rd level along with Battle Fortitude gives him a Fort save that dwarves envy, and a minor boost to initiative that his average DEX can’t provide.

    I kept going with the druid path a bit longer so I could call on elementals when it came to that. I didn’t mind being able to overcome these skinny little toothpick arms of mine for a few minutes a day or further improve my intuition, either. Ever since I’d first found out that the poison on that needle was large scorpion venom, I’d purchased small amounts of it when I could, building up a tolerance until I was immune. Once stung, twice shy, you could say. Then, I was ready to teach those people who thought my job was to get sick and die for them a lesson.

    I became a cancer mage. I spent enough time hanging around the sewers and back alleys and other haunts of the unwashed and unwanted that I picked up better ambush skills, better weapons skills, and warp touch. I grew an extra eye and developed scales that made my skin tougher. The extra eye and scales meant I had to procure a hat of disguise, but I called it the cost of doing business. Before long, the hate and resentment over being so regularly thrown toward destruction so someone else could benefit congealed into a cancer at the pit of my stomach. It gave me a new view on the world, let me tell you. The next thing I knew, the cancer in my gut was communicating with me. More than that, it was helping me, making the limited spells I had more quickly cast. To my delight, I soon found my very touch poisonous to those I wished to harm, and felt myself armored in the tattered rags my position as pariah pressed upon my person.
    Having been spurned by the society of the land-walkers – and having spurned their society, in turn – I sought companionship amongst Goldy’s brethren, the denizens of the skies. I strengthened my bond with my feathered friends, and learned to detect them, almost as if by magic.

    Spoiler
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    Bertram finally gets in to Birdlord at 10th level. Qualifying for Cancer Mage without flaws, and using the most currently printed version of the Improved Flight feat (Races of the Wild) cut down on the speed with which he could do so. Using the aforementioned better weapons skills, Bertram starts most combat encounters at these levels at range, firing large scorpion envenomed arrows from a +1 collision footbow for an average of +11 damage (on top of the weapon’s base), then closing in to infect his targets with disease. He has just enough spells to continue to fulfill a secondary role as a summoner, and has continued to emphasize the skills most useful to recon work. He’s now getting a fairly solid +20 or so to spot checks, depending on magic, and the animal bond shores up the limited ranks spent in handle animal. His contagion ability operates at a respectable 19 Fort DC, before counting any investments in a WIS boosting item which he most assuredly would seek by now. Cancer mage has more ridiculously powerful disease options than warp touch, but those are generally better discussed in the realm of TO than in a practical build.

    I stayed with the ways of the birds for a bit, as this path made me a more dangerous marksman, before succumbing once more to the lure of the cancer mage’s power. With it, I harnessed the bats, the rats, and the spiders, giving myself access to all those places the flightless seem to think of as their own. Often I would infect them myself, before unleashing them on those people who saw me as nothing more than a pawn to be pushed forward to die on their grand chess board. The voice of the cancer in my core kept me centered and granted me extraordinary abilities to avoid harm. By finding my center, I also became a much more skilled archer. I was done lurking in back alleys and cloaking myself in the castoff rags of a society that didn’t want me, though. I was ready to throw myself, and all my new allies, down the throats of those who abandoned me to die in their world. I doubled up on my abilities to speak with my avian allies, so they could better understand the role they needed to play in my revenge.

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    At these levels, Bertram becomes a SAD terror, as zen archery lets him derive most of his combat and non-combat powers from his high Wisdom modifier. Although the chart does not show it in the numbers, Bertram should have a WIS-boosting item of +6 by 15th level. Any further than four levels along the path of cancer mage would cost a point of BAB and, consequently, a vital 4th attack, so he gets out for good after obtaining the children of the night and evasion abilities. Mobile spellcasting is extremely useful to him, even with only low-level spells, because of the premium he places on mobility. Unfortunately, the updated improved flight feat’s wording from Races of the Wild makes the wild aspect of Birdlord completely superfluous. Because Bertram has the animal domain ability, he can now speak with his birds twice a day. Typical tactics at this level include infecting the ravens, bats, spiders, and rats he summons in fairly high numbers to attack his enemies, and sneaking ahead to spread disease in enemy camps while on recon duty.

    With my army of flying, crawling friends, I waged guerilla war on everyone who marginalized me. I learned to minimize the dangers of a counterattack while swooping in to share the gift of warp touch with them. I made my bird friends grow, so they could instill terror and wreak more havoc on the landlocked losers who laughed and leered at me. I learned their thoughts so well that I could send my own wishes to them without a spoken word. The flightless fools became frazzled by my use of all three dimensions in combat and by my intelligent use of my wings. As I became fully aware of the world and my place in it, the numbers of those who could find the will and the way to stand against me and my avian allies dwindled and disappeared.

    Spoiler
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    By the end, Bertram is unleashing four attacks a round from overhead with envenomed, infected arrows and a flight of birds and bats to cause pain, confusion, and disease. His spot check, hovering around +42, makes staying out of his sight extraordinarily difficult without using TO cheese. Although designed to function at range, Bertram is too dangerous for most enemies to consider approaching for melee or a grapple, with both the poison and contagion spells transmitted through his touch, and his known use of scorpion venom and the warp touch disease. His mobility options and perception abilities make him an ideal scout, his cleric and druid levels give him some ability to restore his own health if threatened, and anyone that can withstand his arrow barrage still has to deal with his animal companion and summoned flying hordes.

    EQUIPMENT AND EXTRAS:

    Spoiler
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    Most of the vital equipment is already mentioned. Bertram cannot craft poison himself, other than the spell-like ability he gets. Large scorpion venom is, fortunately, relatively cheap, so he should keep a good supply from the moment he develops an immunity, if not before. His rags provide armor thanks to cancer mage, enchanted to suit his needs. Options that reduce the Fort saves of his enemies should be favored, in addition to the obvious fortification choice. The collision enhancement for weapons, from the Expanded Psionics Handbook, is in the SRD. Pair it with a toxic or virulent enhancement if available to synergize with the abilities Bertram already excels in. If allowed access to Unearthed Arcana and Libris Mortis, grab a pile of nightsticks, shuffle Great Fortitude and Poison Immunity to 1st level with flaws, and get the extend/persist/nightstick trifecta underway, even if it’s only with 1st level spells.

    At higher levels, invest in scrolls and rods and similar for higher-level spells on the Cleric/Druid lists, for those times when hitting something really hard, infecting them, or trying to poison them are all bad plans.
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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."


  16. - Top - End - #106
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Private-Prinny's Avatar

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Rule #1 of being Evil: Don't turn into a snake. It never helps.
    Quote Originally Posted by Sway
    Sway
    Yuan Ti Celebrant

    Background
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    The Yuan Ti Althass was hatched in a household beneath a bustling metropolis. Like many Purebloods, she was conditioned from birth for sevice to the Abominations, Anaethema and the Sepent God, Mershaulk. The majority of her youth was spent engaging in the various rites, rituals and hedonistic revelry of the Yuan Ti undeculture. As she matured, the was trained as an acolyte and expected to assist in the infiltration of the city above.

    Like many of her kind, Althass rebelled against the expectations placed upon her. She had no great desire to enslave or corrupt the humans in the city above, she simply viewed them as an entertaining diversion. She cared not for the various ceremonies dedicated to Mershaulk, though she did have a great love and empathy for serpents. While her apathy and self indulgence was tolerated for a time, Althass found herself at odds with the elders of her household.

    Althass was thrown into a sacrificial pit as an example to the other Purebloods. Such an honour was usually reserved for kidnapped demi-humans, to provide entertainment and sustenance for the Anaethema that resided below. To the surprise of the High Priest, Althass not only survived the fall, but crawled out of the pit a week after she had been offered up to the Demonic Yuan Ti. She had been altered somehow by contact with the Anaethema, quieter and seeming to possess an indefinable craving or hunger. Shocked that their offering had been returned, the Yuan Ti elders allowed Althass to live.

    Chastised by her experience, Althass returned to her duties with a renewed dilligence, though her enthusiasm was somewhat lacking. She assisted the Yuan Ti criminal syndicate, assisting them with smuggling, kidnappings and extortion. Sometimes she acted as a spy, a honeypot, an assassin or enforcer. Often she was detached in carrying out these duties, even whilst performing the most horrific of acts. Her only joys seemed to be dancing and the company of serpents.

    She can often be found dancing in a seedy tavern, luring in patrons for the predation of other Yuan Ti. Quite often she will perform with a snake draped over her. To the few regular patrons that frequent the establishment, she is known simply as Sway. The few city guards and constablery that have attempted to drive out the criminal influence in the city have simply disappeared, though rumours persist that a powerful agent of the Snake God lurks somewhere in the back alleys of the trade district.


    Appearence and Roleplaying.
    Spoiler
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    Sway looks more like a lady of the evening than a warrior. Her slight frame and soft skin is more provocative than threatening. She goes to great lengths to enhance this image, meticulously applying perfumes and cosmetics, dressing in revealing clothing and acting ignorant and slightly confused. Even when she prepares for combat, she wears little more than fine silks, jewlery and a skimpy chainmail bikini.

    Sway does not bother with intimidation. She uses her natural charm in order to get in close to a target before striking. Typically, she allows others to do the talking while she casually dances in the background, often with a serpent draped over her. If she can avoid combat, she will do so, relying on drugs, poison or seduction instead. Many of her foes though her to be little more than a brainwashed slave or doped-up cultist, only to be overwhelmed by her transformation from dispassionate performer to enthusiastic killer.


    Build Sweet Spot
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    This is difficult to judge. I would say that around ECL 12 the character has a decent array of options. In a city based campaign, Sway might make a decent melee build, obviously working well with Rogues and similar character types. Her disinfranchised nature would make her less likely to betray her companions to the Yuan Ti. Overall, a subversion of the strong, silent warrior archtype and an interesting variation of a nature-themed class.


    Attributes and Level Progression
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    32 point buy

    Str:10 Dex:16 Con:16 Int:12 Wis:8 Cha:14

    Final Scores with ability adjustments and racial bonus at ECL 20 (enhancement bonus)

    Str:10 Dex:26 (32) Con:20 Int:14 Wis:8 Cha:22 (28)

    Sway
    {table=head]Effective Level|Class|Base Attack[br]Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Skills|Feats|Class Features

    3rd|Monstrous Humanoid|
    +1
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +0
    |(16) CC Escape Artist 1 rank, CC Handle Animal 1 rank, Hide 4 ranks, Knowledge (Arcana) 2 ranks, Knowledge (Nature) 2 ranks, CC Perform (Dance) 1 rank, CC Sleight of Hand 1 rank; Speak Language Yuan Ti, Common, Abyssal, Draconic |Weapon Finesse, Alertness, Blind Fight|Yuan Ti Racial

    4th|Monstrous Humanoid|
    +2
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +0
    |(4) CC Handle Animal 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, Knowledge (Nature) 1 rank |-|-

    5th|Monstrous Humanoid|
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +1
    |(4) CC Handle Animal 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, Knowledge (Nature) 1 rank |Combat Reflexes|-

    6th|Monstrous Humanoid|
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +1
    |(4) Disguise 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, CC Sleight of Hand 1 rank |-|-

    7th|Bard|
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +6
    |
    +3
    |(8) Craft (Alchemy) 1 rank, Craft (Poison) 1 rank, Escape Artist 2 ranks, CC Handle Animal 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, Perform (Dance) 1 rank |-|Bardic Music (Fascinate, Countersong), Nature Sense, Wild Empathy, Animal Companion

    8th|Bard|
    +5
    |
    +4
    |
    +7
    |
    +5
    |(8) Craft (Poison) 1 rank, Escape Artist 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, Move Silently 1 rank, Perform (Dance) 2 ranks, Sleight of Hand 1 rank, Use magic Device 1 rank|EWP (Spiked Chain)|-

    9th|Snake Lord|
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +9
    |
    +5
    |(6) Hide 1 rank, Move Silently 1 rank, CC Perform (Dance) 2 ranks|-|Animal Bond, Detect Animals, Wild Empathy

    10th|Snake Lord|
    +7
    |
    +7
    |
    +10
    |
    +5
    |(6) Escape Artist 1 rank, Handle Animal 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, Move Silently 1 rank, Perform (Dance) 1 rank|-|First Totem, Low Light Vision

    11th|Snake Lord|
    +8
    |
    +7
    |
    +10
    |
    +6
    |Skills (6) Escape Artist 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, CC Perform (Dance) 1 rank, CC Sleight of Hand 1 rank|Weapon Focus (Bite) |Wild Aspect 1/day

    12th|Soul Eater|
    +9
    |
    +9
    |
    +12
    |
    +8
    |(6) Hide 1 rank, Listen 1 rank, Move Silently 1 rank, CC Perform (Dance) 1 rank, Spot 1 rank|-|Energy Drain

    11th|LA Reduction|
    +9
    |
    +9
    |
    +12
    |
    +8
    |-|-|-

    12th|Snake Lord|
    +10
    |
    +10
    |
    +13
    |
    +8
    |(6) Handle Animal 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, CC Perform (Dance) 1 rank, CC Sleight of Hand 1 rank|-|Speak With Animals

    13th|Cloaked Dancer|
    +10
    |
    +10
    |
    +15
    |
    +8
    |(8) Bluff 2 ranks, Craft (Poison) 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, Move Silently 1 rank, Perform (Dance) 2 ranks, Tumble 1 rank|Life Drain|Enchanting Dance

    14th|Snake Lord|
    +11
    |
    +10
    |
    +15
    |
    +8
    |(6) Escape Artist 1 rank, Handle Animal 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, Listen 1 rank, Move Silently 1 rank, Spot 1 rank|-|Summon Animal

    13th|LA Reduction|
    +11
    |
    +10
    |
    +15
    |
    +8
    |-|-|-

    14th|Cloaked Dancer|
    +12
    |
    +10
    |
    +16
    |
    +8
    |(8) Bluff 2 ranks, Craft (alchemy) 1 rank, Craft (Poison) 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, Move Silently 1 rank, Perform (Dance) 1 rank, Tumble 1 rank |-|Surprise Strike

    15th|Snake Lord|
    +13
    |
    +11
    |
    +17
    |
    +9
    |(6) Escape Artist 1 rank, Handle Animal 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, Listen 1 rank, Move Silently 1 rank, Spot 1 rank|Robilars Gambit|Second Totem, Wild Aspect 2/day

    16th|Snake Lord|
    +14
    |
    +11
    |
    +17
    |
    +9
    |(6) Escape Artist 1 rank, Handle Animal 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, Listen 1 rank, Move Silently 1 rank, Spot 1 rank|-|Animal Growth

    17th|Snake Lord|
    +15
    |
    +12
    |
    +18
    |
    +9
    |(6) Escape Artist 1 rank, Handle Animal 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, Listen 1 rank, Move Silently 1 rank, Spot 1 rank|-|Animal Telepathy

    18th|Snake Lord|
    +16
    |
    +12
    |
    +18
    |
    +10
    |(6) Escape Artist 1 rank, Handle Animal 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, Listen 1 rank, Move Silently 1 rank, Spot 1 rank|Defensive Sweep|Wild Aspect 3/day

    19th|Snake Lord|
    +17
    |
    +13
    |
    +19
    |
    +10
    |(6) Escape Artist 1 rank, Handle Animal 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, Listen 1 rank, Move Silently 1 rank, Spot 1 rank|-|Third Totem

    20th|Cloaked Dancer|
    +18
    |
    +14
    |
    +20
    |
    +11
    |8) Balance 1 rank, Craft (alchemy) 1 rank, Craft (posion) 1 rank, Hide 1 rank, Move Silently 1 rank, Perform (Dance) 2 ranks, Tumble 1 rank|-|Enchanting Dance[/table]



    Build Explaination

    Yuan Ti Pureblood. MM and XPH

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    4 monstrous humanoid levels; Simple Weapons proficiency, Scimitar and Longbow proficiency, Light Armour and Shield proficiency. Alterness and Blind Fight as bonus feats, in addition to normal feat progresion.

    Power Resistance 10 +HD

    Alternate Form (ps); Tiny to Large Viper, as Polymorph Self sans healing, retains type (monstrous humanoid).

    Natural Armour +1

    Darkvision 60 feet

    Class Skills: Concentration, Disguise, Hide, Knowledge (all), Listen, Spot. Speak Language Yuan Ti and Common

    Psi Like Abilities
    ; Manifester Level 3. At Will: Detect Hostile Intent, Psionic Charm (animals, fey, giants, humanoids, magical beasts and monstrous humanoids; DC 12 + Cha), Psionic Daze ( 6HD; DC 11 + Cha). 1/Day: Aversion (DC 12 + Cha), Concealing Amorpha, Darkness, Entangling Ectoplasm (large creature).

    Commentary. Diverse racial abilities. Snakelord complements some of these nicely. I'll break some of these down for reference in order to better explain how they will be utilised.

    Alternate Form. Viper forms are not that great for combat, but they have exellent stealth and movement options. Listed swim and climb speed, they can also take a 10 on skill checks required for these skills. They have a + 4 racial bonus to hide, spot and listen, a +8 to balance, climb and swim. A tiny viper has an additional +8 to hide checks due to size. They have the scent quality, which allows for some tracking and detection options. Finally, they have a poisonous bite. The poison is not great, but deals constitution damage and can easily be harvested for crafting. Obviously great for tracking foes or setting up an ambush.

    Psi Like Abilities. An augmented, versatile Charm effect at will! Yuan Ti are great at making friends, why do they have such a bad rep? Psionic Daze is okay for an at will, but does not scale well. Detect Hostile Intent...At will. This effect is always on. An hours per level buff that gives the general location of nearby intelligent foes. It also prevents surprise and being caught flat footed by foes succeptable to mind effecting powers. Aversion is a long duration debuff, similar to fear but with a variable trigger. Darkness is like the spell of the same name, a decent option when coupled with blind-fighting and scent. Concealing amorpha is great for defence or stealth. Entangling Ectoplasm is a no save, no SR power that is the equivelant of a net. It does not offer an escape clause and can effect opponents up to large size.

    Despite level adjustment, Yuan Ti offers a decent range of roleplaying, combat and stealth abilities. Some of it's powers do not scale very well...Though there may be some room for a small augmentation of Psionic abilities through items like power stones or the Wild Talent feat. As their Psi-Likes function like Powers without cost, they may also be able to be augmented with power points up to the normal manifester level cap. Run it by your DM.


    Bard. Alternate Class Features. (UA)

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    The Nature/Fey bard ACF's were chosen for this build. Bardic Knowledge, Inspire Courage, Inspire Competance, Inspire Greatness and Inspire Heroics are lost. Druidic Animal Companion, Nature Sense, Resist Natures Lure (4th level) and Wild Empathy are gained.

    The changes make me think of the original 1e Bard, with the Druidic flavour of the ACF's. These subtle changes mesh thematically with the Yuan Ti and Snakelord concept, creating a subtle manipulator than can be dangerous when provoked. A few spells are taken to benefit combats and roleplaying, scources are referenced in the list.

    Spells Known.
    0: Minor Disguise (SC), Songbird (SC), Lullaby, Presdigitation, Detect Magic, Read Magic
    1: Critical Strike (SC), Distract (SC), Shock and Awe (SC)


    Snake Lord. (CAdv)

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    Snake Bond (ex). Yuan Ti being great snake handlers is almost intuitive, now Sway has the class features to back this up. The handle animal bonus aids in training snakes, adding templates and milking them for venom. Wild Empathy stacks with the bardic ability and has synergy with the natural charisma of the Yuan Ti and Charisma bonus the Snakelord receives as it's capstone. Additionally, the Bardic Animal Companion class feature is advanced.
    Wild Empathy (ex). Considering that Sway can attempt Charm animals and magical beasts at will, this is a fantastic ability. Animal diplomancy is a great method of ensuring pets are responsive to training. It can also be an effective method of obtaining guardians, mounts and allies. An excellent method of obtaining raw materials for poison, or pure venom for distillation.
    Speak With Snakes (sp). A limited version of the 1st level druid spell. Combined with Charm and Wild Empathy, a service is more likely to be solicited from the targeted snake. It could also be a great method of obtaining specific information from planted spies or guards.
    Summon Snake (sp). A limited version of a summoning spell. Not fantastic, though it has it's uses. Summoned snakes can at the very least have their venom harvested. They can also provide flanking, cover or distract opponents, especially the larger ones. A giant constrictor is a fantastic grappler, as are the huge vipers (though it would be against their normal instincts). Against a climbing, balancing or swimming opponent, summoned snakes can be moderately effective, as their natural abilities give them an advantage.
    Snake Growth (sp). Great spell. As a swift action, it can be coupled with the use of Summon Animal in order to bring Gargantuan Snakes to the field. Not only can this be a great opening move in a combat, it also has the potential to alter the terrain in an enclosed area. As poison DC is Constitution based, the bite attacks and venom harvested from a Gargantuan Viper will be deadlier. This power can also benefit Sway's Sailsnake companion and trained, Warbred serpent guards.
    Snake Telepathy (su). The sight range clause on this ability can be problematic, as snakes can be sneaky. However, this ability allows for more complex commands and concepts to be communicated to snake allies silently. Great for gathering information (even though a snakes intelligence is limited). Summoned and trained pets can have tricks keyed off telepathy as well as verbal or visual commands. Even friendly, but untrained snakes can be easily directed once their attitude is shifted to helpful.
    Low Light Vision (ex). A subtle and often overlooked perception ability. It synergises well with Darkvision and the Blind Fight feat.
    First Totem. Snakes get no racial escape artist bonus? The writers obviously have never handled an angry Carpet Snake or seen one in action. This class feaure rectifies that discrepancy. In could be of use in escaping incarceration, moving though confined areas (even in relation to a tiny viper form) or esacping a grappling monster that outclasses Sway.
    Second Totem. Who does not like Improved Initiative? Coupled with abilities that help Sway avoid surprise and being caught flat footed, this feat increases the chance that Sway will strike first in an encounter. A great way to complement the ambush and skirmish tactics that Sawy relies on.
    Third Totem. An untyped charisma bonus is a subtle capstone ability. Sway has many powers and effects keyed off charisma, so be sure that this ability does not go to waste.
    Wild Aspect. Awesome ability. A natural bite attack compliments melee. It can even be activated in an alternate form. Stacking poisonous bite attacks and other debilitations with melee is part of this builds combat efficacy. Harvesting small amounts of venom from this ability during downtime could allow for crafting potent poison.

    Soul Eater. BoVD and LM
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    Commentary. Synergises well with this build. Yuan Ti are called out in the description of this PrC. Negative levels make poison and the performances of Cloaked Dancer more effective . Additionally, the temporary HP gained from inflicting negative levels contribute to survival. More natural attacks would benefit Soul Eater, but this is not a Soul Eater optimization contest. The bite attacks of Wild Aspect and Alternate form are enhanced by this class.

    The Life Drain feat from Libris Mortis enhances the damge inflicted and temporary hit points gained from Energy Drain. 5 + Charisma modifier. Regardless of how the Soul Eater's Energy Drain is interpreted, the ability of a Necrotic Focus (MIC) weapon is clear.


    Cloaked Dancer. CS
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    Commentary. I was looking for a PrC that provided a few thematic abilities, something befitting a character that called on the Snake Totem. Cloaked Dancer seemed appropriate. It has the ability to mesmerise foes via a hypnotic dance, quite like the ability of some Cobras to mesmerise small animals. The mix of Charm options and Surprise Strike befits the theme of this character.


    Animal Companion.
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    Warbred Sailsnake. MM IV, Druid level -3.
    Not the greatest animal companion. It does suit the theme of Snakelord though. A flying, hooded cobra that can spray a blinding venom. The best feature of this companion is it's Venom Spray ability, a 20 foot cone that blinds creatures. It is not called out specifically as a poison and even a successful fortitude save only halves the duration of it's blinding effect.

    At higher levels, the companion gains the benefit of the Hover feat and the Spit Venom feat from Serpent Kingdoms. Gear for the companion includes the Yuan Ti Poison Fangs graft from Serpent Kingdoms/Fiend Folio. This allows it's natural bite and Spit Venom feat to benefit from poisons with every attack.
    This companion is not great in melee. It typically makes use of Flyby attack to Spray or Spit venom at foes. Only once a foe has been clearly weakened will it move into melee. Should character be accidently caught in the Venom Spray, the Blind Fight feat will help negate the penalty.


    Poison.
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    This build utilises a lot of poison. One of the interesting things about poison is that a creature is immune to it's own venom. The Drow of the Underdark Sourcebook has rules for distilling the natural venom of trained creatures. As Sway can call on the aid of snakes, she has access to their venom as well as her own. She likely has a supply of her Alternate viper Form poison, her Poison Fang venom and her Wild Aspect Poison. Distilling these poisons for use on weapons is a relatively simple task. In addition, she can possibly access Yuan Ti poisons (serpent kingdoms), Positoxins (libris mortis) and many other types of poisons from BoVD, Complete Adventurer, DungeonScape and Complete Scoundrel. Some of these toxins can effect creatures immune to standard poisons. To save space, the stat spread details only distilled natural venom.


    Magical Items (WBL 760k)
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    Manual of Quickness in Action +4 (110 k), Tome of Leadership and Influence +4 (110k), Manual of Bodily Health +4 (110k), Cloak of Charisma +6 (36k), Gloves of Dexterity +6 (36k), (Assassination (+1, Cityscape Web enhancement), Necrotic Focus (+3, Libris Mortis), Toxic (+1, DoTU), Virulent (+1, DoTU), Wounding (+2)/Undead Construct bane) +1 cold iron spiked chain (130,325), Gem of Psychic Poison (28k, BoVD), (Nimble (+1, MIC), Mobility (+1, MIC), Blur, (+1, MIC), Shadow (3750), Slick (3750), Silent Moves (3750)) +5 Mithril Chain Shirt (76,500), Burnoose of 1001 Thorns (3k, MIC), Circlet of persuasion (4500), Belt of Battle (MIC, 12k), Wyrmfang Amulet (MIC, 1350), Fanged Mask (MIC, 8300), 2 Yuan ti Poisoned Fang Grafts (16k, Savage Species), Great Reach Bracers (MIC, 2000), Boots of Striding and Springing (5500), Ring of Adamantine Touch (MIC, 6k), Ring of Mind Shielding (8k), +1 Longbow (2k), 10 Arrows of Biting (MIC, 5070), Hewards Handy Haversack (2k)


    Feats and sources
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    Feats, Alertness (racial bonus), Blind Fight (racial bonus), Improved Initiative (Snakelord bonus), Combat Reflexes, Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (bite), Life Drain (LM), Exotic Weapon Proficiency (Spiked Chain), Robilars Gambit (PH2), Defensive Sweep (PH2)


    Level Adjustment and LA Buyoff.

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    Hmmm. No XP cap this round? At effective level 12, character will spend 11 k xp and reduce LA. 3 levels later, 14k to remove LA completely.

    Having been a DM for a level 1-25 campaign, I have noticed that a lower XP total is not that much of a disadvantage. In fact, lower level characters earn XP at a faster rate. This disparity is marked when facing high EL challenges. The major reason I submitted an ECL 20 build is because of WBL. In a campaign, this character would likely only be a few encounters behind the rest of the paty when they hit level 20. They would also have the majority of the gear befitting a level 20 character. Rather than submit a level 19 and a half character, I decided to submit a level 20. Penalise this build if you must, but realise that the 23k XP reduction would likely have been reduced to around 10k or less by level 20.


    ECL 20 Statblock
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    Sway: Yuan Ti Pureblood Bard 2/Snakelord 10/ Soul Eater 1/ Cloaked Dancer 3; Medium monstrous humanoid (Psionic); HD 5d8+10d10+5d6 +100; 188 hp;Init +17; Spd 40ft; AC 28 (+7* dex, +2 natural, +9 armour), Touch 17, flat footed 21; BA +18; Grp +18; Attack +30/+25/+20/+15 melee Amphisbaena (Reach, 1d6+1 damage, +1 Con Damage, +1 Negative Level, + distilled Poison Fangs poison DC 26, 1d6 con/1d6 con ), +30 melee Bite (1d6, +1 Negative Level, + Poison Fangs poison DC 25, 1d6 con/1d6 con) or +30/+25/+20/+15 ranged +1 Longbow (1d8+1 20/x3 +Arrow of Biting); SA Bardic Music, Spells, Psi-Like Abilities, Spell-Like Abilities, Wild Aspect, Energy Drain, Enchanting Dance, Surprise Strike, Robilars Gambit, Defensive Sweep, Poison Fang Graft; SQ Nature Sense, Animal Companion, Wild Empathy, Alternate Form; AL NE; SV Fort +19, Ref +31, Will +10; Str:10 Dex:26 (32) Con:20 Int:14 Wis:8 Cha:22 (28)
    Feats: Alertness, Blind Fight, Improved Initiative, Combat Reflexes, Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (bite), Life Drain, Exotic Weapon Proficiency, Robilars Gambit, Defensive Sweep
    Skills: Balance +12, Bluff +17, Craft (Alchemy) +5, Craft (Poison) +7, Diplomacy + 14, Disguise +13, Escape Artist +32, Handle Animal +24, Hide +39, Intimidate +14, Knowledge (Arcana) +4, Knowledge (Nature) +8, Listen +8, Move Silently +29, Perform (Dance) +27, Sleight of Hand +18, Spot +8, Survival +1, Tumble +15, Use Magic Device +13 ; Speak Language Common, Yuan Ti, Abyssal, Draconic
    Combat Gear. Amphisbaena, Gem of Psychic Poison, Magical Chainmail Bikini, Burnoose of 1001 Thorns, Circlet of Persuasion, Belt of Battle, Wyrmfang Amulet, Fanged Mask, Great Reach Bracers, Boots of Striding and Springing, Ring of Adamantine Touch, Ring of Mind Shielding, +1 Longbow, 10 Arrows of Biting

    Amphisbaena. Sway's +1 cold iron, Necrotic Focus, Assassination, Virulent, Toxic, Wounding Spiked Chain. She keeps it with her at all times. It is fitted with an Triple Weapon Alchemical Capsule retainer and ready to deliver a potent distilled venom. It has had a modified Permenant Image cast upon it to give it the appearence of it's namesake, a 2 headed snake. Poisons on this weapon effect 2 hits instead of one. Poisons delivered with this weapon inflict secondary damage in 5 rounds instead of 10. This weapon may deliver energy drain. This weapon deals +1d6 damage against foes denied their dex to AC. The wielder of this weapon does not risk accidently poisoning themselves when applying or using poison with this weapon.
    Energy Drain. As normal, but deliverable via Amphisbaena. Additionally, 14 HP are lost instead of 5 and Sway gains 14 temporary hit points for every negative level she inflicts. The DC to remove negative levels inflicted by Sway is 24.
    Poison Fang Graft. Bite poison. DC 20 + con. Stacks with Wild Aspect Poison.
    Robilars Gambit and Defensive Sweep. Attacks on Sway are at +4 to hit and damage. An attacker within reach provokes an attack of opportunity. Opponents that begin their turn next to Sway provoke an Attack of Opportunity. Sway may take 12 attacks of opportunity per round.
    Psychic Poison. Targeting Sway with a Divination or Mind Affecting Spell or Spell-Like Ability take 1d6 int damage. One minute later, they take 1d6 int damage.
    Enchanting Dance. 3/day. Lasts for 8 rounds. DC 22 Will. Sway's Beguiling Dance dazes foes within 30 feet, save required every round. Additionally, their attitude improves by one step unless hostile. Her Wearying Dance fatigues opponents within 30 feet. Must be sustained as an action.
    Surprise Strike. Full round action. Sustains Enchanting Dance and allows an attack. Foes effected by Enchanting Dance are considered Flat Footed and take +1d6 damage from a successful 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."


  17. - Top - End - #107
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Private-Prinny's Avatar

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    Mar 2010
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    The first line says it all.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fistbear Bearfist
    MORE BEAR THAN YOUR BUILD HAS ROOM FOR!

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    CG

    Dwarf

    Ranger 2/Barbarian 2/Ranger 1/Deepwarden 2/Fist of the Forest 3/Bear Warrior 1/Warshaper 4/Bear Lord 5

    Fistbear Bearfist
    {table=head]Level|Class|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Feats|Class Features
    1st|Ranger 1|
    +1
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +0
    |Improved Unarmed Strike|Trapfinding, Favored Enemy (Orcs), Wild Empathy
    2nd|Ranger 2|
    +2
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +0
    ||Ranger bonus feat (Two Weapon Fighting)
    3rd|Barbarian 1|
    +3
    |
    +5
    |
    +3
    |
    +0
    ||Power Attack|Bear Totem bonus feat (Toughness)
    4th|Barbarian 2|
    +4
    |
    +6
    |
    +3
    |
    +0
    |||Bear Totem bonus feat (Improved Grapple)
    5th|Ranger 3|
    +5
    |
    +6
    |
    +3
    |
    +1
    ||Ranger bonus feat (Endurance)
    6th|Deepwarden 1|
    +6
    |
    +8
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |Extra Rage|Deepwarden bonus feat (Track), Trap Sense +1
    7th|Deepwarden 2|
    +7
    |
    +11
    |
    +3
    |
    +4
    ||Stone warden
    8th|Fist of the Forest 1|
    +8
    |
    +13
    |
    +5
    |
    +4
    ||AC bonus, Fast movement, feral trance 1/day, primal living, 1d8 unarmed damage
    9th|Fist of the Forest 2|
    +9
    |
    +14
    |
    +6
    |
    +4
    |Steadfast Determination|Uncanny Dodge, untamed strike
    10th|Fist of the Forest 3|
    +10
    |
    +14
    |
    +6
    |
    +5
    ||Feral trance 2/day, scent, 1d10 unarmed damage
    11th|Bear Warrior 1|
    +11
    |
    +16
    |
    +6
    |
    +5
    ||Bear form (black)
    12th|Warshaper 1|
    +12
    |
    +18
    |
    +6
    |
    +5
    |Snap Kick|Morphic immunities, morphic weapons
    13th|Warshaper 2|
    +13
    |
    +19
    |
    +6
    |
    +5
    ||Morphic body
    14th|Warshaper 3|
    +14
    |
    +19
    |
    +7
    |
    +6
    ||Morphic reach
    15th|Warshaper 4|
    +15
    |
    +20
    |
    +7
    |
    +6
    |Reckless Rage|Morphic healing
    16th|Bear Lord 1|
    +16
    |
    +22
    |
    +9
    |
    +6
    ||Animal bond, detect animals, wild empathy
    17th|Bear Lord 2|
    +17
    |
    +23
    |
    +10
    |
    +6
    ||First totem, low light vision
    18th|Bear Lord 3|
    +18
    |
    +23
    |
    +10
    |
    +7
    |Mad Foam Rager|Wild Aspect 1/day
    19th|Bear Lord 4|
    +19
    |
    +24
    |
    +11
    |
    +7
    ||Speak with animals
    20th|Bear Lord 5|
    +20
    |
    +24
    |
    +11
    |
    +7
    ||Summon Animals[/table]

    Starting stats after racial adjustment (32 point buy):
    STR 16 (Increase this one with level up points)
    DEX 8
    CON 18
    INT 16
    WIS 10
    CHA 6

    Starting stats after racial adjustment (28 point buy):
    STR 16 (Increase this one with level up points)
    DEX 8
    CON 18
    INT 14
    WIS 10
    CHA 6

    Feats:
    1: Improved Unarmed Strike
    2: Two Weapon Fighting
    3: Power Attack, Toughness
    4: Improved Grapple
    5: Endurance
    6: Extra Rage
    9: Steadfast Determination
    12: Snap Kick
    15: Reckless Rage
    18: Mad Foam Rager

    ACFs:
    Barbarian: Bear Totem
    Ranger: Trap Expert (Replaces Track with Trapfinding, gives Disable Device as a class skill)


    Levels 1-5
    Spoiler
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    Fistbear Bearfist grew up on the boarders of dwarven civilization, always on the hunt for enemies of dwarvenkind. From the depths of the Underdark to the wild planes above ground, he has traveled them all, thwarting the dastardly schemes of those who would lay low Moradin's children. He was taught the art of woodsmanship and unarmed combat by his father, who felt that it was not proper for a dwarf to be out of place in either the Stygian depths of the Underdark or a viscious bar room brawl. Fistbear Bearfist soon developed into an uncanny survivalist and a formidable warrior; the goblin tribes of the Kurest mountains still tell whispered tales of his raw anger and savage cunning around the campfire to this day. They say he ate the heart of a bear to gain its strength and courage; while this story cannot be confirmed, Fistbear would later say that he had greatly admired bears in his earlier days and chosen an alias based off of that fact.

    Class abilities:
    Ranger: Trapfinding, Two Weapon Fighting, Power Attack, Favored Enemy (Orcs), Endurance
    Barbarian: Rage, Toughness, Improved Grapple

    Feats:
    1: Improved Unarmed Strike
    2: Two Weapon Fighting
    3: Power Attack, Toughness
    4: Improved Grapple
    5: Endurance

    Character design:
    A skillful ranger who can Power Attack for damage and who has good HP. A competent beatstick for low levels. He gets Endurance, which is used to qualify for Steadfast Determination, Deepwarden, and Animal Lord, for free. Improved Grapple is also a decent bonus feat at this level.

    Suggested items: Masterwork Dwarven Waraxe, light steel shield, and Anklets of Translocation


    Levels 6-7
    Spoiler
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    It was no surprise that, after defeating the orcish warlord Uzzog and extracting an oath from him to never set foot in the Sunken Isles and trouble the dwarvish colonies there ever again, the elite dwarven paramilitary group known as the Deepwardens took interest in Fistbear Bearfist. After much convincing, they managed to convince him to join their ranks, where Fistbear’s prowess in combat and survival secured a rapid promotion to the rank of Sargent. However, his undisciplined and often unorthodox methods put him at odds with his commanders. After four years of service, Fistbear declared that he had learned all he needed from the Deepwardens and set off to wander among nature once again, to protect dwarvenkind in his own way.

    Class abilities:
    Deepwarden: Track, Trap Sense, Stonewarden (CON modifier replaces DEX modifier to AC)

    Feats:
    6: Extra Rage (2 additional Rage attempts per day)

    Character design:
    Now we get to add our CON modifier to AC instead of our DEX, which means that Fistbear is so tough that he can dodge attacks. Not quite sure how that works, but I’m ok with it since the CON increase when raging neatly cancels out the AC penalty that incurs. Also, CON now factors into the will save due to Steadfast Determination. This synergizes quite well with the Deepwarden’s good will save progression.

    Suggested equipment:

    Magical Dwarven Waraxe, +2 items for Strength, Con, and saves.


    Levels 8-10
    Spoiler
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    After leaving the Deepwardens, Fistbear wound up facing off against his old enemy Uzzog, who was collecting orcs to invade the Dreamwell forest, the home of many gray elves dwelt. Fistbear made full use of the tricks that he had learned as a Deepwarden, tracking Uzzog through the wilderness to his war camp outside of Dreamwell and challenging him again to a duel to decide whether the invasion would take place. Ax met ax as the two warriors fought, but at the end of the day Fistbear stood victorious over the warchief and forced him to withdraw his forces. For his efforts, the Dreamwell elves rewarded him with an induction into the ranks of their protectors, the Fists of the Forest. Fistbear found that he fit in surprisingly well; many members, like himself, were wild souls and he soon became one with the group despite their racial differences.

    Class abilities:
    Fist of the Forest: AC bonus (CON modifier to AC as that of the Monk), fast movement (+10 feet to base speed), feral trance 2/day (+4 to DEX, +2 attack bonus on unarmed strikes, one bite attack per round during a full attack at highest BAB dealing 1d6+ STR modifier in damage) , primal living, Uncanny Dodge, untamed strike (unarmed strikes treated as magcial weapons), scent, 1d10 unarmed damage.

    9: Steadfast Determination (Add CON modifier to will saves, does not fail a fortitude save on a natural 1)

    Character design:
    Now, in addition to Power Attack, unarmed combat becomes viable due to large damage dice and the extra attacks. Also, AC goes up another notch from another CON modifier to AC ability. Fistbear’s touch AC is pretty high by now.

    Equipment suggestions:
    The usual stat and save boosters of course, and perhaps Gloves of the Balanced Hand to allow for better Two Weapon Fighting as a transition to unarmed combat? This would allow for the use of the two handed Waraxe and unarmed strikes at the same time. I am assuming that magical gear does not get destroyed in a Feral Trance, or that it can be modified to allow the claws to grow safely.


    Level 11-15
    Spoiler
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    Fistbear greatly expanded his unarmed combat repertoire as a Fist of the Forest, but he still felt that there was more to learn even after achieving the rank of Grand Master. One day, while patrolling through the woods, he came across a mother bear protecting her cubs from a tendriculos. The plant creature was a fierce carnivore, but the bear unflinchingly stood her ground and savagely attacked the threat to her children. As Fistbear watched, he realized that there was still much to be learned from the bears that he had admired as a child. Fistbear sought out the druids of Dreamwell and asked each of them how he might turn into bears as they did; none knew, but one old elf mentioned that he had heard of an old orc barbarian who could turn into a bear as he raged, but it was unclear where the orc was now, or even if he was still alive. Fistbear, however, was not one to give up easily; while the elves might not have kept tabs on an orc warrior, he knew one who would: Warchief Uzzog.

    Once again, Fistbear tracked down Uzzog, whose dominion was by now embroiled in a civil war as rival clans fought amongst themselves for power. Uzzog granted Fistbear an audience with him despite the troubling times and agreed to help find the warrior Fistbear was looking for, if the dwarf would help him in turn. Fistbear agreed and soon the two found themselves fighting side by side to force a united orcish empire. After the last renegade clan had surrendered to Uzzog, the warchief took Fistbear to a desolate mountain and revealed that the bear-warrior Fistbear sought was none other than Uzzog’s father, Ulman. If Fistbear was willing to learn, Uzzog could teach him from Ulman’s writings.

    Ulmans insight on how to assume a bear’s form and make the fullest use of shapeshifting abilities were truly insightful, and Fistbear at last mastered the art of turning into a bear. He fought with all the ferocity of the wildlands, mauling his enemies with his bear hands.

    Class abilities:
    Bear Warrior: Turn into a black bear when raging, gaining +8 STR, +2 to DEX, and +4 to CON instead of the normal rage bonuses. the +2 to will saves is retained.
    Warshaper: Morphic immunities, morphic weapons, morphic body, morphic reach, morphic healing

    Feats:
    12: Snap Kick
    15: Reckless Rage (+2 STR, CON when raging for an additional -2 penalty to AC)

    Character design:
    Well, now you turn into a bear for great stat boosts. You can launch off a ton of unarmed and natural attacks, which you can Power Attack with for damage. If you are so inclined, grappling is also an option, what with the ability to give great bear hugs and all. Warshaper gives even more STR and CON along with one step higher natural weapon damage, fast healing, reach, and immunity to stunning and to critical hits.

    Equipment suggestions:

    An Amulet of Mighty Fists is now needed since your bear hands are the primary weapon. Boots of Speed will allow for extra attacks. An item of flying will let you join in aerial combat. An item of Freedom of Movement will hinder battlefield control spells.


    Levels 16-20
    Spoiler
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    Fistbear was soon known as the “Bear Lord” by his friends and enemies. He could instantly discern the location of the nearest bear within hundreds of feet, and even fought more like a bear when in his natural form. The dwarf was at one with the wild bears, who in turn accepted him as one of their own. Fistbear even found that he was able to converse with the animals and summon them to aid him should he need their assistance.

    When the wild dwarf finally died of extreme old age, it was said that a procession of bears carried his body to his birthplace in the Underdark and laid him to rest in a forgotten cavern, so that he might truly become one with nature.

    Character Abilities:
    Bear Lord: Bear Bond, Detect Bears, Bear Empathy, First Totem (+4 on Intimidate), Low Light Vision, Wild Aspect 1/day, Speak with Bears 1/day, Summon Bears.

    You also get to initiate grapples when you hit someone. Great thing we have Improved Grapple as a bonus feat from earlier.

    Feats:
    18: Mad Foam Rager (Can delay the effect of a single attack, spell, or ability used against him for one round as an immediate action)

    Character design:

    You’re basically the king of bears. You know where bears are, can talk to them, summon them, and even fight like one in your natural form.

    Also, Mad Foam Rager lets you ignore any one thing while once per rage for a round Useul when people are slinging 9th level spells around.


    Final Strength and Con score when throwing it down as a bear and going all out:
    Spoiler
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    STR: 16 (base) + 5 (leveling up) + 5 (tome) + 6 (item) + 10 (Rage) +4 (Warshaper) = 46
    Con: 18 (base) + 4 (tome)+ 6 (item) + 6 (Rage) +4 (Warshaper) = 38

    Attack Bonus: +20 (BAB) + 18 (STR) + 5 (Amulet) +1 (Haste) + 2 (Feral Trance) = +46

    Unarmed strike damage: 2d6 + 18 (STR) + 5 (Amulet) + 2 (Feral Trance)
    Claws: 1d6 + 18 (STR) + 5 (Amulet) + 2 (Feral Trance)
    Bite: 1d8 + 18 (STR) + 5 (Amulet) + 2 (Feral Trance)

    AC: 10 + 14 (CON as DEX) + 14 (Unnamed) + 1 (Insight) +1 (Haste) + 8 (Bracers of Armor) + 5 (Ring of Deflection) -4 (rage) = 49

    FORT 20 (base) + 14 (CON) +1 (insight) + 5 (Resistance) = +40
    REF 7 + 1 (DEX) +1 (insight) + +1 (Haste) 5 (Resistance) = +15
    WILL 7 + 14 (CON) modifier +1 (insight) + 5 (Resistance) = +27

    Other: Get a weapon with the Parrying enchantment that you can hold when you are a bear. Maybe a weighted cloak? If you can’t then the Dusty Rose Iouns Stone, Pale Green Ioun Stone and/or the Stone of Good Luck can give +2 to skills, saves, and ability checks along with a +1 to attack and +1 to AC if used together. Doesn’t quite stack with Parrying, though, and is bloody expensive.

    Items: Amulet of Mighty Fists, Parrying cloak, Gloves of the Balanced Hand, Vest of Resistance and Freedom of Movement, Bracers of Armor, Belt of Strength and Health, Manuals of Strength and Health, Ring of Speed, Ring of Protection. Wildening clasps if needed, though bears can wear all of that if the circus pictures I’ve seen are any indication.


    Sources used
    Spoiler
    Show

    Complete Warrior & Errata
    Tome of Battle
    Player’s Handbook 2
    Complete Champion
    Races of Stone
    Unearthed Arcana
    XPH
    MIC

    Errata on Bear Warrior

    Whenever a bear warrior enters a rage or frenzy, he can choose to assume bear form (similar to the polymorph spell). He must remain in bear form until the end of his rage or frenzy. When his rage or frenzy ends, the bear warrior immediately returns to his own form. The number of times a bear warrior can assume bear form is the number of times per day he enters a rage or frenzy. Ignore the conflicting limitations specified in the third, fourth, and fifth paragraphs of the bear form description.

    SNAKE EYES!
    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."


  18. - Top - End - #108
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Private-Prinny's Avatar

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    Mar 2010
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Predator? Prey? I'm the guy with the Animal Companion.
    Quote Originally Posted by Felix
    Felix, Hobo King of the Felines
    Dark Whisper Gnome Rogue 1/Factotum 3/Swashbuckler 3/Monk 2/Beastmaster 1/Animal Lord (Catlord) 10

    The elven people on the island of Inmai often share the tale of a wild gnome that can be found on their island, but nobody even knows if the tale is true any more. Felix is often talked about but rarely seen, save as a quick shadow in the corner of the eye. Wanderers and vagrants lift him up as a folk hero, while the city guard treats his name like a sip of vinegar. Below is Felix's class breakdown, extended backstory, and additional information.

    {table=head]ATTRIBUTE|Points|Base|Race|Levels|Enhancement|Inhe rent|Class|TOTAL|MOD
    STR|4|12|-2|||||10|+0
    DEX|10|16|+2||+6|+4|+2|30|+10
    CON|2|10|+2|||||12|+1
    INT|16|18||+5|+6|+5||34|+12
    WIS|0|8||||||8|-1
    CHA|0|8|-2|||||6|-2[/table]


    {table=head]Level|Class|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Skills|Feats|Class Features

    1st|Wilderness Rogue 1|
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +2
    |
    +0
    |8+INT|Craven|Sneak attack +1d6, antiquarian

    2nd|Swashbuckler 1|
    +1
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +0
    |4+INT|Weapon Finesse|Bonus feat (Weapon Finesse)

    3rd|Factotum 1|
    +1
    |
    +2
    |
    +4
    |
    +0
    |6+INT|Knowledge Devotion|Inspiration, Cunning Insight, Cunning Knowledge, trapfinding

    4th|Swashbuckler 2|
    +2
    |
    +3
    |
    +4
    |
    +0
    |4+INT| |Arcane Stunt: Blur

    5th|Factotum 2|
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +5
    |
    +0
    |6+INT||Arcane Dilettante (1 spell)

    6th|Invisible Eye Monk 1|
    +3
    |
    +5
    |
    +7
    |
    +2
    |4+INT|Carmendine Monk, Improved Unarmed Strike, Combat Reflexes|Unarmed strike, AC bonus, flurry of blows, bonus feat (Combat Reflexes)

    7th|Invisible Eye Monk 2|
    +4
    |
    +6
    |
    +8
    |
    +3
    |4+INT|Lightning Reflexes|Evasion, bonus feat (Lightning Reflexes)

    8th|Swashbuckler 3|
    +5
    |
    +6
    |
    +9
    |
    +4
    |4+INT||Insightful Strike

    9th|Factotum 3|
    +6/+1
    |
    +7
    |
    +9
    |
    +5
    |6+INT|Skill Focus (Handle Animal)|Brains over Brawn, Cunning Defense

    10th|Beastmaster 1|
    +7/+2
    |
    +9
    |
    +11
    |
    +5
    |4+INT||Animal Companion, Wild Empathy

    11th|Catlord 1|
    +8/+3
    |
    +11
    |
    +13
    |
    +5
    |4+INT||Animal Bond, Detect Animals, Wild Empathy (stacks with Beastmaster)

    12th|Catlord 2|
    +9/+4
    |
    +12
    |
    +14
    |
    +5
    |4+INT|Darkstalker|First totem, improved low-light vision (because of racial low-light vision)

    13th|Catlord 3|
    +10/+5
    |
    +12
    |
    +14
    |
    +6
    |4+INT||Wild aspect 1/day

    14th|Catlord 4|
    +11/+6/+1
    |
    +13
    |
    +15
    |
    +6
    |4+INT||Speak w/ Animals 1/day

    15th|Catlord 5|
    +12/+7/+2
    |
    +13
    |
    +15
    |
    +6
    |4+INT|Underfoot Combat|Summon Animal 1/day

    16th|Catlord 6|
    +13/+8/+3
    |
    +14
    |
    +16
    |
    +7
    |4+INT|Confound the Big Folk|Second totem (bonus feat since Monk 2 gave Lightning Reflexes), wild aspect 2/day

    17th|Catlord 7|
    +14/+9/+4
    |
    +14
    |
    +16
    |
    +7
    |4+INT||Animal Growth 1/day

    18th|Catlord 8|
    +15/+10/+5
    |
    +15
    |
    +17
    |
    +7
    |4+INT|Natural Bond|Animal telepathy

    19th|Catlord 9|
    +16/+11/+6/+1
    |
    +15
    |
    +17
    |
    +8
    |4+INT||Wild aspect 3/day

    20th|Catlord 10|
    +17/+12/+7/+2
    |
    +16
    |
    +18
    |
    +8
    |4+INT||Third totem[/table]

    BUILD HIGHLIGHTS:
    Spoiler
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    • Three levels of Factotum provides Felix access to 1 arcane spell for his arcane dilettante spell-like ability. He chooses reduce person daily, bringing himself down to Tiny size. This provides a bonus to his Hide checks, AC, and attacks at lower levels, but the icing on the cake is at higher levels, when it allows him to benefit from Underfoot Combat and Confound the Big Folk against Medium or larger creatures.
    • By level 20, Felix has a +49 hide and a +53 move silently without magic items. The Dark Creature template provides further bonuses, as well as allowing Felix (and Eli) to hide in plain sight. Darkstalker makes him even harder to detect, the hat of anonymity helps him blend in, and a friendly caster could cast mind blank or similar anti-divination spells on him.
    • Felix gains the Dark Creature template from a continuous Collar of Umbral Metamorphosis, as does Eli. For further notes on this template, see the Quirks/Notes section.
    • Beastmaster, catlord, and Natural Bond provide an animal companion at the level of a 17th level druid. Felix uses Handle Animal to rear this companion as a warbeast.
    • Damage bonuses: +1d6 sneak+level (Craven)+12 (Insightful Strike) constant, additional boosts provided by the Tooth of Dahlver Nar, Knowledge Devotion, and Cunning Insight
    • Feats for free: Weapon Finesse, Improved Unarmed Strike, Combat Reflexes, Lightning Reflexes, Confound the Big Folk (since Invisible Eye Monk grants Lightning Reflexes, Catlord grants a free bonus feat...any one that Felix is eligible for at level 16).
    • Cunning insight/knowledge/defense and Brains over Brawn give a constant +12 bonus to all DEX/STR skills, and can boost attack, damage (see above), saves, skills, and AC on a per-encounter basis
    • Carmendine Monk provides a continuous +12 bonus to AC
    • Arcane Stunt provides a (shortened) 2nd-level spell-like ability usable 12 times/day
    • Two levels of monk, monk's belt, and monk's tattoo mean Felix is treated as an 11th-level monk for unarmed damage, AC bonus, and speed bonus. This alone gives Felix a 60-foot land speed and a further +2 bonus to AC.
    • The class itself actually provides interesting synergy, allowing you to summon a big cat and make it even bigger as a swift action via Animal Growth. Granted, it's only 1/day, and this is at level 17, but it's worth noting. Alternatively, Eli could be made bigger.
    • Four attacks on a full attack (five if flurry of blows works with claws...if not, still five unarmed attacks)


    BACKSTORY:
    Spoiler
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    Before adventuring:
    For Felix Whippersnap, even as a young gnome, freedom was always paramount. He thought of a home as nothing but a comfortable cage and, as such, avoided his as much as possible. He lived in the jungle until he was found by a troupe of bandits, who took the stealthy little man under their wing.

    Level 1:
    He moved to the city with them and became a cat burglar, stealing divine artifacts straight out of the city’s biggest temples. However, he would often escape to the comfort of the wild between jobs. He had the freedom to come and go as he pleased, but one job changed everything. Felix’s heist was interrupted by a sleepless child, and the gnome panicked. His tiny blade found the boy’s gut with sickening ease. The child’s face twisted in confusion and pain as he deflated like a waterskin. Felix stood frozen, but only for a second. He fled, taking up the life of a vagrant. He ate from trashcans, slept in trees, and scuttled on to the next town when wanted posters with his portrait starting cropping up. However, word travels faster than a gnome’s feet, and Felix soon found himself uncomfortably familiar to the town guard in every city he visited.

    Levels 2-5:
    After his fourth jailbreak, Felix knew that he needed a change of scenery. He took a position as a crewman aboard the Milady Adalia, a ship that sailed with no questions and no papers. The gnome learned the art of sailing quickly, and he was soon scampering along the masts rigging ropes and making repairs without any formal training. He took whatever task was handed to him, as he had finally found a family that offered him all of the comforts of home with none of the restrictions. Soon, the captain got wind of Felix’s past, and asked him to perform jobs requiring a bit more skill—looting other ships, assassinating the captain’s rivals, and the like. While Felix still felt repentant for his first murder, he felt no guilt in these jobs. He was merely protecting his captain and, by bringing evil men to their end, possibly atoning for his own sins. He loved his life at sea, and he would often laugh at his own good fortune.

    However, the sea is a beast not to be taken lightly. One day, while Felix was manning the crow’s nest, a fierce storm came upon the ship. Wave after wave lashed over the boat, striking down the crew and pulling them into the cruel waters below. Felix was forced to watch helplessly from above as men who had become his closest friends drowned to death. Though he tried to save them, there was nothing he could do as another strong wave snapped the main mast in two, pulling Felix down as well. When he came to, Felix and a few other stragglers found themselves washed ashore on an island with no sign of their ship. Luckily, the native elven people of the island welcomed the survivors warmly. Felix was impressed with the liberal nature of the elves, and he was fascinated by their collection of strange and exotic wildlife kept at the island’s zoo. He would often linger by the leopard cages, amazed by the quiet grace behind the cat’s powerful moves. One day, while visiting the zoo, he noticed the most beautiful woman he had ever seen—a tall elven maiden feeding fish to a family of seals. He shyly introduced himself, and after a short courtship, the two were married on the island. Felix stayed and made a life for himself with his new wife, Enara. For the first time, he found a place to settle down.

    Levels 6-7:
    Enara taught Felix the spiritual practices of her people—namely the study of their holy texts and the practice of enlightenment through meditation. Felix took to the practices immediately, and would sometimes meditate for days at a time. However, one day Enara came to him with big news: she was to have a child, and as such she would have to take some time off from the zoo. Felix would have to work a steady job to support his new family, but he was thrilled. He immediately took over Enara’s position as a zookeeper, and the menial work allowed him time to meditate while he worked. He would still visit the leopard cage as much as possible, clearing his mind and picturing himself bounding around with the mighty cats. Everything seemed to move slowly around him, and he could see the various parts of his life clicking into place like gears in a beautifully elaborate machine.

    However, Felix soon began having nightmares. He would see a twisting blade and a flash of red, accompanied by the sound of a crying baby. He tried reading the scriptures more, meditating more, but nothing could shake his feelings of dread. As it turns out, his sense of foreboding was not without merit. The closer Enara came to term, the sicker she became. What started as a mild fever became a constant problem, and her already-pale skin grew even whiter until her feeble veins were visible just below the surface. The various priests and witch doctors that visited all presented Felix with the same news—they could only focus their prayers and magic on one of the two, mother or child. Furthermore, the side effects of the treatments on the one would likely kill the other. After many tearful conversations, Felix knew what he had to do. Enara wanted to have this child, and she wanted Felix to raise the baby on the island. When the time came, the clerics tried everything they could, but the strain of childbirth was too much for Enara, and she passed. The child was born with the same high fever as his mother, and Felix only had two weeks with his son Eli before the boy, too, passed away.

    Levels 8-9:
    With nothing left to live for, Felix ran once again. He hopped aboard another ship, determined to go back to the life he once had aboard the Milady Adalia. However, the captain of this ship was an awful man, a slaver who would often kidnap children to sell them in the next port. Felix couldn’t take it, and he violently murdered the captain one night in his quarters. As soon as the murder occurred, another storm swallowed up the vessel, stranding Felix once again on the same island he had tried to leave.

    Level 10:
    Convinced that Enara was asking him to stay from beyond the grave, Felix returned to his work at the zoo. A baby leopard was born, and Felix asked his supervisors if he could rear the cub. They allowed him to, and Felix would often spend long hours with the creature, bottle-feeding it or playing with it even long after the zoo closed. He affectionately named it Eli, and it was clear that this gnome and leopard had a special bond. One day, Felix was surprised at exactly how close this bond was. He began to feel the leopard’s emotions: its instincts, its excitement, and its sense of yearning to be free. While Felix had chosen to give up his freedom, Eli never had the choice—he was born in captivity, and he would die in captivity. Felix couldn’t stand the thought, and he broke the leopard out of the zoo.

    Levels 11-20:
    Now together, the two prowl the island freely. Felix has grown his hair out like matted fur, and has even gone so far as to replace his teeth with fangs. However, he is no villain—he and Eli stalk in the shadows, only springing out to fight alongside children. It doesn’t matter if they’re robbing you blind or asking you for food; if you’re speaking to a child on Felix’s island, it’s best to speak kindly. Elven parents on the island often try to use the story of a wild gnome to scare their children into behaving, but their children just laugh—they know Felix exists to protect them, thinking of each of them as his own children.


    RACIAL TRAITS AND OTHER INFO:
    Spoiler
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    Lawful Neutral alignment
    small size
    • +1 AC
    • +1 size on attack
    • +4 size bonus on Hide checks
    Low-light vision (improved by Catlord)
    Darkvision 60 ft
    Weapon familiarity: hooked hammers
    +1 to attack kobolds/goblinoids
    +4 dodge bonus to AC vs giants
    Silence 1/day
    Favored class: rogue


    SKILL TRICKS (and levels gained):
    Spoiler
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    Clever Improviser @ 3rd level
    Collector of stories @ 4th level
    Clarity of vision @ level 12
    Acrobatic backstab @ level 13
    Back on your feet @ level 14


    SKILL BREAKDOWN @ 20th level without items (except attribute boosts):
    Spoiler
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    {table=head]Appraise|Balance|Bluff|Climb|Concentration|Craft|D ecipher Script|Diplomacy|Disable Device|Disguise|Escape Artist|Forgery|Gather Information|Handle Animal|Heal|Hide|Intimidate|Jump|Know:arcana|Know: dungeoneering|Know:local|Know:nature|Know:planes|K now:religion|Listen|Move Silently|Open Lock|Perform|Profession:sailor|Ride|Search|Sense Motive|Sleight of Hand|Spellcraft|Spot|Survival|Swim|Tumble|UMD|Use Rope
    12|24|-2|13|1|12|12|-2|19|-2|22|12|0|10|-1|49|-2|15|18|18|18|20|18|18|23|53|28|-2|0|24|20|-1|26|14|22|4|14|34|-2|22
    [/table]


    POSSIBLE LEVEL 20 GEAR LIST:
    Spoiler
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    Hat of Anonymity, +6 INT added(48500)
    Blindfold of True Darkness (9000)
    Continuous Collar of Umbral Metamorphosis (22000)
    Phoenix Cloak (60000)
    Bracers of the Hunter (8500)
    Gloves of DEX +6 (36000)
    Ring of Protection +5 (50000)
    Ring of Freedom of Movement (40000)
    Vest of resistance +4 (25000)
    Monk's belt (13000)
    Boots of Speed (12000)
    Tome of DEX +4 (110000)
    Tome of INT +5 (137,000)
    Mwk tools: Hide, Move Silent, Tumble (150)
    Psychoactive Skin of the Defender (32000)
    Tooth of Dahlver Nar: Leraje (43200)
    Monk's tattoo (80000)
    Continuous Collar of Umbral Metamorphosis for Eli (22000)
    Bag of Tricks: tan (6300)
    5,350 gp left to rear Eli


    QUIRKS/NOTES:
    Spoiler
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    Felix would use his handle animal skill to raise Eli to be a warbeast (MMII) if permitted by the DM.

    Felix has a natural progression through levels except for his slow-starting Will save, but please keep in mind that Inspiration can be used to up those.

    For a low-magic/low-item campaign, it may be fitting to remove the level of Rogue in exchange for the Dark creature template (currently granted by the collar of umbral metamorphosis). As such, Craven becomes worthless. Take Factotum at first level instead, with Darkstalker. This frees up a feat down the road, which can be used for anything. If wizards.com material is allowed, consider Font of Inspiration or Wild Cohort at later levels (to finally get a tiger companion, which is unfortunately unavailable to the Beastmaster).

    For a high-magic campaign/high-wealth campaign, consider dropping the level of Rogue and levels of monk in favor of the Dark creature template and either two levels of conjurer (if playing with multi-class penalties) or a level of conjurer and a level of Abjurant Champion (if not). Not only does this open up a lot of arcane spells, but it can provide the amazingly broken Abrupt Jaunt class feature. if your DM disallows this, or you just want to be nice, at least you still get a cat familiar for flavor. While you could keep the collar of umbral metamorphosis, simply taking the template frees up your throat slot for the Necklace of Natural Attacks (from Savages Species). Also, in a high-magic world, you may want to consider using the Quick trait from Unearthed Arcana. When healing abounds, -20 hp over 20 levels isn't that bad in exchange for a 10-foot speed bonus. Of course, you're already pretty fast.

    The head slot item above uses the rules to add a +6 enhancement bonus to INT on a regular Hat of Anonymity. If your DM disallows these rules, just use a regular +6 Headband of Intellect. Because of the factotum's Brains over Brawn ability, you still gain a +3 bonus to Hide, among other things.

    Though it replaces the grace class feature, the Arcane Stunt alternate class feature comes at level 1, according to Complete Mage. However, I have put it at the level of the feature it replaces.
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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."


  19. - Top - End - #109
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Someone's compensating for something.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ruszel
    Organization: The Slithering Guild
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    There are many thieves’ guilds throughout the land: hotbeds of larceny, training grounds of subterfuge, and birthplaces of backstabs. But the Slitherers, in the tropical city of Zirraen, are unique among all their competitors. How could they not be, when the chances are good that a poisoned guild member was attacked naturally by a scorpion, rather than being assassinated? When there is little need to set a guard around the guild’s armory at night, since it is surrounded by a moat full of crocodiles anyway?

    Type: Thieves’ guild
    Background and Goals
    Acquire wealth. Protect the sultan of Zirraen from would-be assassins. Advance the sciences of brewing poisons and antidotes and safely rearing venomous creatures.

    Criterion Modifiers for Guild Membership
    Character level: +1/3 levels
    Eunuch: +1
    Bluff 5 ranks: +1
    Sneak Attack class feature: +1
    Poison Use class feature: +3
    Having venomous snakes or scorpions trained and under control: +1/2 each (limit +3)
    Having a venomous creature as a familiar, animal companion, or similar: +2
    Having assassinated someone in the service of the guild: +1 each (limit +3)
    Having assassinated someone within the guild via poison: +1
    Having prevented an assassination by poison within the guild (including against oneself): +2
    Having papers of recommendation from the city clergy: +2
    Having prevented the sultan’s assassination: +7
    Member of another thieves’ guild: -5
    Earning the sultan’s enmity: -15

    Affiliation ScoreTitle: Benefits and Duties
    4 or less: cutthroat-for-hire or not affiliated.
    5-10: Guild worker - can be hired to guard guild property or go on guild missions that involve confidential information.
    11-13: Guild agent - +2 circumstance bonus to Fortitude saves vs. poison and Craft (poisonmaking) checks.
    14-17: Elite agent - Access to guild harems
    18-21: Forked Tongue Operative - +2 circumstance bonus to Bluff and Disguise checks.
    22-24: Member of the Twisting Coil - Access to guild treasuries
    25 or higher: Guildmaster - Considered a bodyguard to the sultan. Receive free healing services from court clergy. In line for succession to leadership of the entire guild.


    Guildmaster Ruszel of the Slithering Guild
    As you are escorted into the central hub of the guild -- what you could only call a throne room -- you see the man who has summoned you, surrounded by guildthieves waving fans.

    The air is hot and thick and feels hard to see through, but you make out that Guildmaster Ruszel is a stocky man with a shiny bald head and well-toned muscles, possibly oiled. He wears a vest and a sort of a toga wrap, small earrings and large finger-rings; his hand holds a coiled whip, and his eyes look sharp enough to match it. But his most striking feature, as you approach closer, is that his cloak is held in place by a live tiny viper coiled around his neck.

    You suppose you actually shouldn’t be too surprised, considering the number of snakes that inhabit the rest of the throne room ...

    Backstory
    Spoiler
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    Ruszel was raised as one of the waifs wandering the royal court. His mother, a minor lady of Zirraen, tried terribly hard to keep him innocent of the intrigues of court life. However, she was well-versed in the realities of Zirraen power, and made sure her bright young boy had a strong foundational education in animal handling, apothecary work, and contortionist exercises.

    Ruszel was always of solid stature, and in adolescence he was quickly drafted into the palace guard. He was talented with a ranseur, either for disarming opponents or for supporting his fellow guards as they fought. Before long, he was assigned to guard a caravan of the Slithering Guild, and a temporary assignment grew into a permanent association.

    Initially Ruszel was ridiculed and mocked harshly by Forked Tongue Operative Malus, who was in charge of training new recruits. He said Ruszel didn't have what it took to be a real guildthief: ruthlessness or enough talent with poisons. In spite of the oppression the boy was talented, and turned his focus towards rearing and training snakes, figuring out what tasks they could do in his behalf.

    Eventually Ruszel's mother was killed in a political struggle, and he inherited a magic Amulet from her, which grew in power as his skills grew. Malus was cold and hardened about her death. Ruszel couldn't take that ... so finally one night, he killed Malus and created an opening that let him get promoted within the guild.

    After this act of vengeance, he finally developed the things he would need (i.e. an evil alignment) to master poison use and become a veritable assassin. Increased ruthlessness, a pattern of promotion, and his ever-increasing talent with control of all snakes led him quickly up the guild's ladder hierarchy.


    {table=head]Level|Class|Base Attack[br]Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Skills|Feats|Class Features

    1st | Factotum |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +2
    |
    +0
    | Heal 4, Handle Animal 4, Escape Artist 4, Craft (poisonmaking) 4, Survival 4, Bluff 4, Diplomacy 4, Disguise 4, Listen 4, Knowledge (nature) 2, Use Rope 1, Tumble 1 | Combat Reflexes, Stand Still | Trapfinding, Inspiration (2), Cunning Knowledge, Cunning Insight

    2nd | Factotum |
    +1
    |
    +0
    |
    +3
    |
    +0
    | Heal 5, Handle Animal 5, Escape Artist 5, Craft (poisonmaking) 5, Survival 5, Bluff 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Listen 4, Knowledge (nature) 2, Use Rope 1, Tumble 1; healing hands | | Inspiration (3), Arcane Dilettante (1 cantrip)

    3rd | Factotum |
    +2
    |
    +1
    |
    +3
    |
    +1
    | Bluff 6, Handle Animal 6, Escape Artist 6, Craft (poisonmaking) 6, Listen 6, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Knowledge (nature) 2, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Use Rope 1, Tumble 1; healing hands, second impression | Skill Focus (handle animal) | Arcane Dilettante (level 1), Brains over Brawn, Cunning Defense

    4th | Factotum |
    +3
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    |
    +1
    | Bluff 7, Handle Animal 7, Escape Artist 7, Craft (poisonmaking) 7, Listen 7, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Knowledge (nature) 2, Hide 2, Move Silently 1, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Use Rope 1, Tumble 1; healing hands, second impression | INT +1 | Arcane Dilettante (2 spells), Cunning Strike

    5th | Factotum |
    +3
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    |
    +1
    | Bluff 8, Handle Animal 8, Escape Artist 8, Craft (poisonmaking) 8, Listen 8, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Knowledge (nature) 2, Hide 3, Move Silently 3, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Use Rope 1, Tumble 1; healing hands, second impression, social recovery | | Inspiration (4), Arcane Dilettante (level 2), Opportunistic Piety

    6th | Beastmaster |
    +4
    |
    +3
    |
    +6
    |
    +1
    | Bluff 8, Handle Animal 9, Escape Artist 8, Craft (poisonmaking) 8, Listen 9, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Knowledge (nature) 2, Hide 6, Move Silently 6, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Use Rope 1, Tumble 1; healing hands, second impression, social recovery | Exotic Weapon Proficiency (whip) | Animal Companion, Wild Empathy

    7th | Factotum |
    +5
    |
    +4
    |
    +7
    |
    +2
    | Bluff 10, Handle Animal 10, Escape Artist 10, Craft (poisonmaking) 8, Listen 9, Hide 6, Move Silently 6, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Tumble 3, Knowledge (nature) 2, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Use Rope 1, Use Magic Device 1, Concentration 1, Autohypnosis 1; healing hands, second impression, social recovery | |

    8th | Snakelord |
    +6/+1
    |
    +6
    |
    +9
    |
    +2
    | Bluff 10, Handle Animal 11, Escape Artist 11, Craft (poisonmaking) 8, Listen 10, Hide 7, Move Silently 7, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Tumble 3, Intimidate 2, Knowledge (nature) 2, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Use Rope 1, Use Magic Device 1, Concentration 1, Autohypnosis 1; healing hands, escape attack, second impression, social recovery | INT +1 | Animal Bond, detect animals

    9th | Snakelord |
    +7/+2
    |
    +7
    |
    +10
    |
    +2
    | Bluff 10, Handle Animal 12, Escape Artist 12, Craft (poisonmaking) 8, Listen 11, Hide 8, Move Silently 8, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Tumble 3, Intimidate 4, Knowledge (nature) 2, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Use Rope 1, Use Magic Device 1, Concentration 1, Autohypnosis 1; healing hands, escape attack, quick escape, second impression, social recovery | Natural Bond | First Totem (+4 Escape Artist), Low-Light Vision

    10th | Snakelord |
    +8/+3
    |
    +7
    |
    +10
    |
    +3
    | Bluff 10, Handle Animal 13, Escape Artist 13, Craft (poisonmaking) 8, Listen 12, Hide 9, Move Silently 9, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Tumble 3, Intimidate 8, Knowledge (nature) 2, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Use Rope 1, Use Magic Device 1, Concentration 1, Autohypnosis 1; healing hands, escape attack, quick escape, second impression, social recovery | | Wild Aspect 1/day

    11th | Factotum |
    +9/+4
    |
    +7
    |
    +10
    |
    +3
    | Bluff 13, Handle Animal 13, Escape Artist 13, Craft (poisonmaking) 8, Listen 12, Hide 9, Move Silently 9, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Use Rope 5, Tumble 6, Intimidate 8, Knowledge (nature) 2, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Use Magic Device 1, Concentration 1, Autohypnosis 1, Forgery 1; healing hands, escape attack, quick escape, second impression, social recovery | | Arcane Dilettante (3 spells)

    12th | Factotum |
    +10/+5
    |
    +7
    |
    +11
    |
    +3
    | Bluff 15, Handle Animal 14, Escape Artist 14, Craft (poisonmaking) 8, Listen 12, Hide 10, Move Silently 10, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Use Rope 5, Tumble 9, Intimidate 8, Knowledge (nature) 2, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Use Magic Device 1, Concentration 1, Autohypnosis 1, Forgery 1; healing hands, escape attack, quick escape, second impression, social recovery, whip climber | Martial Stance (thicket of blades); INT +1 | Inspiration (5), Arcane Dilettante (level 3), Cunning Surge

    13th | Snakelord |
    +11/+6/+1
    |
    +8
    |
    +12
    |
    +3
    | Bluff 15, Handle Animal 16, Escape Artist 16, Craft (poisonmaking) 8, Listen 13, Hide 12, Move Silently 12, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Use Rope 5, Tumble 9, Intimidate 8, Knowledge (nature) 2, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Use Magic Device 1, Concentration 1, Autohypnosis 1, Forgery 1; healing hands, escape attack, quick escape, second impression, social recovery, whip climber | | speak with animals

    14th | Assassin |
    +11/+6/+1
    |
    +8
    |
    +14
    |
    +3
    | Bluff 17, Handle Animal 16, Escape Artist 16, Craft (poisonmaking) 8, Listen 13, Hide 13, Move Silently 13, Tumble 12, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Use Rope 5, Intimidate 8, Knowledge (nature) 2, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Use Magic Device 1, Concentration 1, Autohypnosis 1, Forgery 1; acrobatic backstab, healing hands, escape attack, quick escape, second impression, social recovery, whip climber | | Sneak Attack +1d6, Death Attack, Poison Use, Spells

    15th | Snakelord |
    +12/+7/+2
    |
    +8
    |
    +14
    |
    +3
    | Bluff 17, Handle Animal 18, Escape Artist 18, Craft (poisonmaking) 8, Listen 14, Hide 14, Move Silently 14, Tumble 12, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Use Rope 5, Intimidate 8, Knowledge (nature) 2, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Use Magic Device 1, Concentration 1, Autohypnosis 1, Forgery 1; acrobatic backstab, healing hands, escape attack, quick escape, second impression, social recovery, timely misdirection, whip climber | Craven | summon animal

    16th | Uncanny Trickster |
    +12/+7/+2
    |
    +8
    |
    +16
    |
    +3
    | Bluff 19, Handle Animal 18, Escape Artist 19, Craft (poisonmaking) 10, Listen 17, Hide 17, Move Silently 17, Tumble 12, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Use Rope 5, Intimidate 8, Knowledge (nature) 2, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Use Magic Device 1, Concentration 1, Autohypnosis 1, Forgery 1; acrobatic backstab, assume quirk, healing hands, escape attack, quick escape, second impression, social recovery, timely misdirection, whip climber | INT +1 | Bonus Trick, Favorite Trick (second impression)

    17th | Snakelord |
    +13/+8/+3
    |
    +9
    |
    +17
    |
    +4
    | Bluff 19, Handle Animal 20, Escape Artist 20, Craft (poisonmaking) 10, Listen 18, Hide 19, Move Silently 19, Tumble 12, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Use Rope 5, Intimidate 8, Knowledge (nature) 2, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Use Magic Device 1, Concentration 1, Autohypnosis 1, Forgery 1; acrobatic backstab, assume quirk, healing hands, escape attack, never outnumbered, quick escape, second impression, social recovery, timely misdirection, whip climber | Improved Initiative | Second Totem (feat), Wild Aspect 2/day

    18th | Uncanny Trickster |
    +14/+9/+4
    |
    +9
    |
    +18
    |
    +4
    | Bluff 21, Handle Animal 20, Escape Artist 21, Craft (poisonmaking) 10, Listen 20, Hide 21, Move Silently 21, Tumble 12, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Use Rope 5, Intimidate 8, Use Magic Device 6, Knowledge (nature) 2, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Concentration 1, Autohypnosis 1, Forgery 1; acrobatic backstab, assume quirk, healing hands, escape attack, listen to this, never outnumbered, quick escape, second impression, social recovery, timely misdirection, whip climber | Darkstalker | Bonus Trick, Favorite Trick (social recovery), animal growth

    19th | Snakelord |
    +15/+10/+5
    |
    +9
    |
    +18
    |
    +4
    | Bluff 21, Handle Animal 22, Escape Artist 22, Craft (poisonmaking) 12, Listen 22, Hide 22, Move Silently 22, Tumble 12, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Use Rope 5, Intimidate 9, Use Magic Device 6, Knowledge (nature) 2, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Concentration 1, Autohypnosis 1, Forgery 1; acrobatic backstab, assume quirk, healing hands, escape attack, listen to this, never outnumbered, quick escape, second impression, social recovery, timely misdirection, whip climber | | Animal Telepathy

    20th | Uncanny Trickster |
    +16/+11/+6/+1
    |
    +10
    |
    +18
    |
    +5
    | Bluff 23, Handle Animal 22, Escape Artist 23, Craft (poisonmaking) 15, Listen 23, Hide 23, Move Silently 23, Tumble 12, Heal 5, Survival 5, Diplomacy 5, Disguise 5, Use Rope 5, Intimidate 10, Use Magic Device 8, Knowledge (local) 5, Knowledge (nature) 2, Sleight of Hand 1, Open Lock 1, Search 1, Disable Device 1, Concentration 1, Autohypnosis 1, Forgery 1; acrobatic backstab, assume quirk, collector of stories, healing hands, escape attack, listen to this, never outnumbered, quick escape, second impression, social recovery, timely misdirection, whip climber | CON +1 | Bonus Trick, Favorite Trick (acrobatic backstab), Tricky Defense, Wild Aspect 3/day

    [/table]

    Initial and final ability scores:
    Str 14, Dex 14, Con 14, Int 16, Wis 8, Cha 12
    Str 20, Dex 18, Con 22, Int 30, Wis 12, Cha 16

    Equipment
    Besides standard equipment, the most important thing is for Ruszel to pick up a Novice Devoted Spirit Amulet before he can take Martial Stance, and a Ring of Evasion. Because ... well, with that Reflex save, how can you not buy one? .

    Other comments
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    I didn't get everything in this build to work out the way I'd like. So I'll just comment on its flaws before the judges have a chance to.

    I dipped two prestige classes for one level each. That's unfortunate, but I felt that dipping Beastmaster was more elegant than adding a second base class (like Druid) to getting an animal companion. I wanted to keep Ruszel's base class pure Factotum ... because this is utterly unlike any other Factotum build I've seen, and moreover Factotum is the only class with the combination of abilities to pull this type of build off.

    As for Assassin, I would have skipped it in spite of how powerful Craven is, except that its flavor was so perfect -- Poison Use, and the mechanics of sneak attack making his snake minions much more potent (since they can flank, and constrictors are good at grappling). Note that Craven's prerequisite says "sneak attack class feature," so neither Cunning Strike nor Assassin's Stance would technically qualify.

    The build also does not complete Animal Lord -- but note that it essentially completes 9/10 of the class, not 7/10 as it appears on first glance, since Uncanny Trickster progresses Animal Lord in pretty much all ways (except a couple hit points). The final level of Animal Lord would grant +2 Charisma, which is flavorful but fairly useless for this build. I thought about dropping 3 levels of Uncanny Trickster in favor of 3 levels of Animal Lord, but it felt like it just would have lost some of the character's flavor overall.

    Since I'm running out of time to write more details, I hope the power of the build is mostly self-evident. But I'll try to give a summary:

    He's a very competent skillmonkey at all levels. Traps aren't his specialty, but many campaigns don't include more than one trap per day, and he at least has the basic abilities (considering Cunning Knowledge). Stealth? Scouting? Social rogue functions? All excellent.

    He's also a good melee battlefield controller. Feats and a reach weapon make him great from Level 1, and eventually a dagger whip (not a regular whip, obviously; if dagger whip isn't allowed, change his Exotic Proficiency to Spiked Chain or Kusari-Gama instead of whip!) and Craven damage boosts, he'll be a monster in melee. And then consider the snakes! Summoned snakes, purchased and trained snakes, and a snake animal companion most of all. He ends up with an effective Druid level of 16 for purposes of his snake companion, which is respectable. Throw in the occasional poisonous bite from Wild Aspect, and the occasional extra attack from Cunning Surge.

    If he's up against a losing battle, his standard tactic is surrender, counting on his Bluff checks to keep him alive, so that he might have more opportunities to use his excellent Escape Artist skills which are iconic to the Snakelord.

    Miscellaneous skill tricks and minor magical tricks (Assassin and Factotum spells) round out the build. Note that his favorite Facotum spell will be Heroics, which among other uses lets him temporarily learn Martial Study (foehammer) as a prerequisite to Martial Stance (thicket of blades), so that he's not fully dependent on his Amulet to be able to take that feat.
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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."


  20. - Top - End - #110
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    UROG SMASH PUNY NON-BEAR!
    Quote Originally Posted by Urog
    Name: Urog Wind Bear
    Race: Neanderthal

    Progression
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    {table=head]Level | Class | Str | Dex | Con | Int | Wis | Cha | BAB | Base Fort | Base Ref | Base Will | Feats | Class Features | Skills
    1st | Ranger (Wildshape) | 20 | 8 | 16 | 8 | 8 | 14 | 1 | 2 | 2 | 0 | Power Attack | Fast Movement, Favoured Enemy (Animal), Wild Empathy | Intimidate 2 Handle Animal 4 Knowledge (Nature) 4 Survival 4 Spot 4
    2nd | Ranger (Wildshape) | 20 | 8 | 16 | 8 | 8 | 14 | 2 | 3 | 3 | 0 | | | Intimidate 2.5 Handle Animal 5 Knowledge (Nature) 5 Survival 5 Spot 5
    3rd | Ranger (Wildshape) | 20 | 8 | 16 | 8 | 8 | 14 | 3 | 3 | 3 | 1 | Endurance, Toughness | | Intimidate 3 Handle Animal 6 Knowledge (Nature) 6 Survival 6 Spot 6
    4th | Ranger (Wildshape) | 21 | 8 | 16 | 8 | 8 | 14 | 4 | 4 | 4 | 1 | | Animal Companion | Intimidate 3.5 Handle Animal 7 Knowledge (Nature) 7 Survival 7 Spot 7
    5th | Ranger (Wildshape) | 21 | 8 | 16 | 8 | 8 | 14 | 5 | 4 | 4 | 1 | | Wildshape 1/day | Intimidate 4 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 8 Spot 8
    6th | Animal Lord (Bear) | 21 | 8 | 16 | 8 | 8 | 14 | 6/1 | 6 | 6 | 1 | Self Sufficient | Animal Bond, Dectect Animals, Wild Empathy | Intimidate 5 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 9 Spot 9
    7th | Animal Lord (Bear) | 21 | 8 | 16 | 8 | 8 | 14 | 7/2 | 7 | 7 | 1 | | First Totem, Low-Light Vision | Intimidate 6 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 10 Spot 10
    8th | Animal Lord (Bear) | 22 | 8 | 16 | 8 | 8 | 14 | 8/3 | 7 | 7 | 2 | | Wild Aspect 1/day | Intimidate 7 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 11 Spot 11
    9th | Primeval (Dire Eagle) | 22 | 8 | 16 | 8 | 8 | 14 | 9/4 | 9 | 7 | 2 | Improved Natural Attack (Claw) | Primeval Form 1/day, Animal Empathy | Intimidate 8 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 12 Spot 11
    10th | Primeval (Dire Eagle) | 23 | 9 | 17 | 7 | 9 | 13 | 10/5 | 10 | 7 | 2 | | Regression 1, Low-Light Vision | Intimidate 9 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 12 Spot 11
    11th | Animal Lord (Bear) | 23 | 9 | 17 | 7 | 9 | 13 | 11/6/1 | 11 | 8 | 2 | | Speak with Animals | Intimidate 10 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 13 Spot 11
    12th | Animal Lord (Bear) | 24 | 9 | 17 | 7 | 9 | 13 | 12/7/2 | 11 | 8 | 2 | Flyby Attack | Summon Animal | Intimidate 11 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 14 Spot 11
    13th | Animal Lord (Bear) | 24 | 9 | 17 | 7 | 9 | 13 | 13/8/3 | 12 | 9 | 3 | Improved Grapple | Second Totem, Wild Aspect 2/day | Intimidate 12 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 15 Spot 11
    14th | Primeval (Dire Eagle) | 24 | 9 | 17 | 7 | 9 | 13 | 14/9/4 | 12 | 10 | 4 | | Feral Power 1 | Intimidate 13 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 15 Spot 11
    15th | Primeval (Dire Eagle) | 24 | 9 | 17 | 7 | 9 | 13 | 15/10/5 | 13 | 10 | 4 | Extra Wildshape | Primeval Form 2/day | Intimidate 14 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 15 Spot 11
    16th | Primeval (Dire Eagle) | 26 | 10 | 18 | 6 | 10 | 12 | 16/11/6/1 | 13 | 10 | 4 | | Regression 2, Scent | Intimidate 15 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 15 Spot 11
    17th | Primeval (Dire Eagle) | 26 | 10 | 18 | 6 | 10 | 12 | 17/12/7/2 | 14 | 11 | 5 | | Feral Power 2 | Intimidate 16 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 15 Spot 11
    18th | Primeval (Dire Eagle) | 26 | 10 | 18 | 6 | 10 | 12 | 18/13/8/3 | 14 | 11 | 5 | Extra Wildshape | Primeval Form 3/day | Intimidate 17 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 15 Spot 11
    19th | Primeval (Dire Eagle) | 27 | 11 | 19 | 5 | 11 | 11 | 19/14/9/4 | 15 | 11 | 5 | | Regression 3, Fast Movement | Intimidate 18 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 15 Spot 11
    20th | Primeval (Dire Eagle) | 28 | 11 | 19 | 5 | 11 | 11 | 20/15/10/5 | 15 | 12 | 6 | | Feral Power 3 | Intimidate 19 Handle Animal 8 Knowledge (Nature) 8 Survival 15 Spot 11[/table]


    The Tale of the Wind Bear
    Spoiler
    Show
    A warrior of the high mountains, Urog belonged to the Wind Bear tribe, named for the great eagles which flew over head, mightier than the other sky dwellers, as were the bears of the lands below. First born son of the cheiftan Urog was destined for great things and was trained in the arts of the wilderness. Setting out for the lowlands to learn more about the world, Urog signed up with an adventuring group, taking the lead by the stength of his arm.
    The strength of his arm could only carry him so far though, for as he grew more powerful and learnt more of the world, Urog became more in touch with the animals, first the mighty bears of the wood and wasteland, then with the great eagles of his mountain homelands. Becoming one with nature and with the beasts, he gave up his humanity for greater strength and attunement.



    Level 20
    Spoiler
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    Hit Dice: 4d8+15d10+188
    Initative: +4
    Speed: 30ft, Fly 60ft (Average)
    Armour Class: 27 (-1 Size, +5 dex, + 13 natural), touch 14, flat-footed 22
    Base Attack/Grapple: +20/+36
    Attack: Claw, +37 melee (2d6+18), If hit free grapple attempt
    Full Attack: 2 Claws, +37 melee (2d6+18), If hit free grapple attempt, and Bite +32 melee (1d8+9)
    Space/Reach: 10ft/10ft
    Special Attacks: Power Attack. -x to hit, +x to damage
    Special Qualities: Low light vision (4x normal)
    Saves: Fort +24, Ref +18, Will +6
    Abilities: Strength 46, Dexterity 21, Constitution 29, Intelligence 5, Wisdom 11, Charisma 11
    Skills: Intimidate +23, Handle Animal +8, Knowledge (Nature) +5, Survival +15, Spot +11

    On top of this base, items of you preferance can be applied, such as weapons wieldable in claws to enable use of power attack, or increase armour class. Or hopefully path that slight hole which is the will save


    Combat Tactics:
    Spoiler
    Show
    Until level 8, Urog is merely a massively strong power attacker, wielding a two handed sword to maximize damage output. Nothing much original here.
    At level 9 you begin to have a choice, taking on Primeval Form, his physical stats a rather impressively increased, and more importantly, gains the ability to fly. Combined with large size and full BAB, an interesting tactic becomes viable against foes who can't fly. Pick them up and take them for a trip up then drop them to the ground. While won't work on all foes, at the very least while in mid air they are distracted.
    When he hits level 12, Urog gains flyby attack, now we can swoop down, hit a foe and get our grapple attempt from Bear Lord. We are roughly mimiking the Snatch feat, depsite only being Large.
    From there on out Urog gets better at this tactic, however his stregth score continues to increase and such if he does decide to stick with a sword can deal fairly decent damage, nothing compared to an ubercharger, but what does? Extra Wildshape enable Urog to actaully transform 8 times a day from level 18 onwards, so hopefully won't be forced to spend encounterd in a non-idea form


    Weaknesses:
    Spoiler
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    Intelligence 5. Unlike most characters, with his adventure Urog gets dumber with age. Applying an aging at level 19 when he Regresses for the third time would change most his stats to even becoming slightly better, but it does make for interesting roleplaying opportunites as he becomes more feral with time. In addition to this, Urogs will save is less than impress, a mere +6 at level 20. Magic items should be aquired to help cover this weakness, but having levels in three class where it is a weak save always makes a save lag.


    Sources:
    Spoiler
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    Neanderthal: Frostburn
    Ranger: Players Handbook
    Wildshape Ranger: Unearthed Arcana
    Animal Lord: Complete Adventurer
    Primeval: Frostburn
    Dire Eagle: Races of Stone
    Extra Wildshape: Complete Divine
    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."


  21. - Top - End - #111
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Private-Prinny's Avatar

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    Mar 2010
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    *insert Dances With Wolves-related joke here*
    Quote Originally Posted by Brolly
    Brolly, the Alpha God
    NG Human Ranger 5, Wolf Lord 7, Ranger 3, Crusader 2, Wolf Lord 3


    Level Breakdown
    Spoiler
    Show
    Note: The numbers presented here are not modified by stats, items, synergy or similar, but the base numbers. For modified numbers see 5th, 10th, 15th and 20th levels in the 'Stats and Story' spoilers.

    Base Beginning Stats
    Str 16, Dex 10, Con 12, Int 10, Wis 14, Cha 15

    Base End Stats
    Str 18, Dex 10, Con 12, Int 10, Wis 14, Cha 20

    {table=head]Level|Class|BAB|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Skills|Feats|Class Features

    1st|Ranger 1|
    +1
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +0
    |Handle Animal +4, Heal +4, Knowledge (nature) +2, Listen +4, Ride +4, Spot +4, Survival +4, Use Rope +2|Combat Reflexes, Mounted Combat, Track|Fast Movement (+10 feet), Favored Enemy (animals), Wild Empathy +3

    2nd|Ranger 2|
    +2
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +0
    |Handle Animal +5, Heal +5, Knowledge (nature) +3, Listen +5, Ride +5, Spot +5, Survival +5, Use Rope +3|-|Wild Empathy +4

    3rd|Ranger 3|
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +1
    |Handle Animal +6, Heal +6, Knowledge (nature) +4, Listen +6, Ride +6, Spot +6, Survival +6, Use Rope +3|Endurance, Vexing Flanker|Wild Empathy +5

    4th|Ranger 4|
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +1
    |Handle Animal +7, Heal +6, Knowledge (nature) +4, Listen +7, Ride +7, Spot +7, Survival +7, Use Rope +5|-|Animal Companion, Ranger Spells, Wild Empathy +7

    5th|Ranger 5|
    +5
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +1
    |Handle Animal +8, Heal +7, Knowledge (nature) +5, Listen +8, Ride +8, Spot +7, Survival +8, Use Rope +5|-|Favored Enemy (shapechangers), Spells, Wild Empathy +8

    6th|Animal Lord 1|
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +1
    |Handle Animal +9 (+13 canines), Heal +7, Knowledge (nature) +6, Listen +9, Ride +8, Spot +8, Survival +9, Use Rope +5| Natural Bond|Animal Bond (wolflord), Detect Animals (canines), Wild Empathy +9 (+13 canines)

    7th|Animal Lord 2|
    +7
    |
    +7
    |
    +7
    |
    +1
    |Handle Animal +10 (+14 canines), Heal +8, Knowledge (nature) +7, Listen +10, Ride +8, Spot +10, Survival +13, Use Rope +5|-|Low-light Vision, Wild Empathy +10 (+14 canines)

    8th|Animal Lord 3|
    +8
    |
    +7
    |
    +7
    |
    +2
    |Handle Animal +11 (+15 canines), Heal +9, Knowledge (nature) +8, Listen +10, Ride +8, Spot +10, Survival +13, Use Rope +8|-|Wild Aspect 1/day (Scent - 30 mins.), Wild Empathy +11 (+15 canines)

    9th|Animal Lord 4|
    +9
    |
    +8
    |
    +8
    |
    +2
    |Handle Animal +12 (+16 canines), Heal +9, Knowledge (nature) +9, Listen +11, Ride +9, Spot +11, Survival +14, Use Rope +8|Practiced Spellcaster|Speak With Animals 1/day, Wild Aspect 1/day (Scent - 40 mins.), Wild Empathy +12 (+16 canines)

    10th|Animal Lord 5|
    +10
    |
    +8
    |
    +8
    |
    +2
    |Handle Animal +13 (+17 canines), Heal +10, Knowledge (nature) +10, Listen +12, Ride +9, Spot +12, Survival +15, Use Rope +8|-|Summon Animal (1d4+1 dire wolves) 1/day, Wild Aspect 1/day (Scent - 50 mins.), Wild Empathy +13 (+17 canines)

    11th|Animal Lord 6|
    +11
    |
    +9
    |
    +9
    |
    +3
    |Handle Animal +14 (+18 canines), Heal +10, Knowledge (nature) +11, Listen +12, Ride +11, Spot +12, Survival +15, Use Rope +10|Improved Trip|Wild Aspect 2/day (Scent - 60 mins.), Wild Empathy +14 (+18 canines)

    12th|Animal Lord 7|
    +12
    |
    +9
    |
    +9
    |
    +3
    |Handle Animal +16 (+20 canines), Heal +10, Knowledge (nature) +12, Listen +13, Ride +12, Spot +13, Survival +16, Use Rope +10|Chain Spell|Animal Growth 1/day, Wild Aspect 2/day (Scent - 70 mins.), Wild Empathy +16 (+20 canines)

    13th|Ranger 6|
    +13
    |
    +10
    |
    +10
    |
    +4
    |Handle Animal +17 (+21 canines), Heal +11, Knowledge (nature) +13, Listen +14, Ride +13, Spot +14, Survival +16, Use Rope +11|-| Wild Empathy +17 (+21 canines), Wild Shape 1/day

    14th|Ranger 7|
    +14
    |
    +10
    |
    +10
    |
    +4
    |Handle Animal +18 (+22 canines), Heal +12, Knowledge (nature) +14, Listen +15, Ride +14, Spot +15, Survival +17, Use Rope +11|-| Wild Empathy +18 (+22 canines), Wild Shape 2/day, Woodland Stride

    15th|Ranger 8|
    +15
    |
    +11
    |
    +11
    |
    +4
    |Handle Animal +19 (+23 canines), Heal +12, Knowledge (nature) +15, Listen +16, Ride +15, Spot +16, Survival +17, Use Rope +12|Animal Defiance| Wild Empathy +19 (+23 canines), Wild Shape 3/day, Swift Tracker

    16th|Crusader 1|
    +16
    |
    +13
    |
    +11
    |
    +4
    |Balance +2, Handle Animal +21 (+25 canines), Heal +12, Knowledge (nature) +15, Listen +16, Ride +17, Spot +16, Survival +17, Use Rope +12|-|Furious Counterstrike, Maneuvers (Charging Minotaur, Crusader's Strike, Douse the Flames, Stone Bones, Vanguard Strike) & Stances (Iron Guard's Glare), Steely Resolve

    17th|Crusader 2|
    +17
    |
    +14
    |
    +11
    |
    +9
    |Balance +5, Handle Animal +22 (+26 canines), Heal +12, Knowledge (nature) +15, Listen +16, Ride +19, Spot +16, Survival +17, Use Rope +13|-|Stance (Bolstering Voice)

    18th|Animal Lord 8|
    +18
    |
    +15
    |
    +12
    |
    +9
    |Balance +5, Handle Animal +23 (+27 canines), Heal +12, Knowledge (nature) +15, Listen +16, Ride +19, Spot +16, Survival +17, Use Rope +13|Animal Control|Animal Telepathy (100 ft.), Wild Aspect 2/day (Scent - 80 mins.), Wild Empathy +20 (+24 canines)

    19th|Animal Lord 9|
    +19
    |
    +15
    |
    +12
    |
    +10
    |Balance +5, Handle Animal +24 (+28 canines), Heal +12, Knowledge (nature) +15, Listen +19, Ride +20, Spot +19, Survival +17, Use Rope +13|-|Wild Aspect 3/day (Scent - 90 mins.), Wild Empathy +21 (+25 canines)

    20th|Animal Lord 10|
    +20
    |
    +16
    |
    +13
    |
    +10
    |Balance +5, Handle Animal +25 (+29 canines), Heal +13, Knowledge (nature) +15, Listen +20, Ride +20, Spot +20, Survival +17, Use Rope +13|-|Wild Aspect 3/day (Scent - 100 mins.), Wild Empathy +22 (+26 canines)
    [/table]


    Stats and Story
    Spoiler
    Show
    My master is a god. We both smelled the snow same time, but I was strong and fast before he could even walk. He was born wiser than I though. He understood. He could speak the high speech of the race of Masters. He was fragile for a long time, so I protected him. This was my task so he could be the Lord. I didn't know then he was to be a God rather than a Master, but I knew he was special. Before he was swift and strong I was already old to my people. Master kept me young, like he. Gods live a long, long time, and He blessed me. I was stronger. Swifter. Greater. He made me Master to my people as far from they as He was from me. The Overmaster died early, the one who taught my Master. I kept master warm. I brought him meat. When the Pack of Others, shaggy and lean, came I protected him, for they were crazed with winter hunger and would bite even Masters. I killed their Master and Master taught me a thing. To be a master of this Pack of Others. The Pack of Others became the Pack of Ours. I spoke to them of this great Master and they learned to put their faith in him like I. I took a winter mate, great mother of this Other/Our pack. She had Other/Mine children. These children Master taught as I had been taught. He Blessed them. They saw Him as I did. A great thing. A thing you would never ever bite. He taught them things the others would not listen to. Others cowered but did not listen. My pups listened. They became great. Not as I, but better than Others could be. We already knew to circle the elk, to surround the hare. He took that and we practiced. We became Greater. This was to be protected. We protected Him like no other would. He was the Master.

    Level 5
    Spoiler
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    Ranger 5

    Medium Humanoid (human)
    Hit Dice: 5d8+5 (27 hp)
    Initiative: +0
    Speed: 40 ft. (8 squares)
    Armor Class:14 (+4 armor), touch 10, flat-footed 14
    Base Attack/Grapple:+5/+8
    Attack: Harpoon +9 melee/ranged (1d10+4)
    Full Attack: Harpoon +9 melee/ranged (1d10+4)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft. (10 ft. with harpoon)
    Special Attacks: Favored Enemy (animals), ranger spells
    Special Qualities: Wild Empathy +10
    Saves: Fort +5, Ref +4, Will +3
    Abilities Str 16, Dex 10, Con 12, Int 10, Wis 14, Cha 16
    Skills: Handle Animal +10, Heal +9, Knowledge (nature) +7, Listen +10, Ride +10, Spot +9, Survival +12, Use Rope +5
    Feats: Combat Reflexes(HumB), Endurance(RangB), Mounted Combat, Track (RangB), Vexing Flanker
    Organization: Animal Companion
    Challenge Rating:
    Possessions: +1 Harpoon (2015 gp), Armor, masterwork studded Leather (175 gp), Boots of the Winterlands (2,500 gp), Tame Ash Rat (? gp), Troll Gut Rope (500 gp), War Sled (400 gp)

    Pack Size
    (not including wolves and fox)
    12 warbred riding dogs (1,800 gp) + Animal companion

    Animal Companion
    Spoiler
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    Warbeast Riding Dog
    Medium Animal
    Hit Dice: 3d8+12 (25 hp)
    Initiative: +2
    Speed: 50 ft. (8 squares)
    Armor Class: 16 (+2 Dex, +4 natural), touch 12, flat-footed 14
    Base Attack/Grapple: +2/+6
    Attack: Bite +6 melee (1d6+4)
    Full Attack: Bite +6 melee (1d6+4)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: —
    Special Qualities: Link, low-light vision, scent, share spells
    Saves: Fort +7, Ref +5, Will +3
    Abilities: Str 18, Dex 15, Con 18, Int 2, Wis 14, Cha 6
    Skills: Jump +10, Listen +7, Spot +7, Swim +5, Survival +2*
    Feats: Alertness, Combat Reflexes, Track (B),
    Challenge Rating: 1

    Link (Ex): Brolly can handle his animal companion as a free action, or push it as a move action, even if he doesn’t have any ranks in the Handle Animal skill. The druid gains a +4 circumstance bonus on all wild empathy checks and Handle Animal checks made regarding an animal companion.

    Share Spells (Ex): Brolly may have any spell (but not any spell-like ability) she casts upon herself also affect her animal companion. The animal companion must be within 5 feet of her at the time of casting to receive the benefit. If the spell or effect has a duration other than instantaneous, it stops affecting the animal companion if the companion moves farther than 5 feet away and will not affect the animal again, even if it returns to Brolly before the duration expires. Additionally, Brolly may cast a spell with a target of “You” on his animal companion (as a touch range spell) instead of on himself. Brolly and his animal companion can share spells even if the spells normally do not affect creatures of the companion’s type (animal).

    Trip (Ex): A wolf that hits with a bite attack can attempt to trip the opponent (+1 check modifier) as a free action without making a touch attack or provoking an attack of opportunity. If the attempt fails, the opponent cannot react to trip the wolf.

    Skills: Riding dogs have a +4 racial bonus on Jump checks.

    *Riding dogs have a +4 racial bonus on Survival checks when tracking by scent.


    Favored Enemy (Ex): Brolly gains a +2 bonus on Bluff, Listen, Sense Motive, Spot, and Survival checks when using these skills against animals. Likewise, he gets a +2 bonus on weapon damage rolls against such creatures.

    Ranger Spells: Caster level 2nd. (Spells per day: (1); Save DC 12 + spell level)

    Sample Prepared Spells
    1st - Animal Friend


    The winters had become worse and worse. We could only protect master with ourselves, to warm him. The master, he knew things were not right. He made us find many other Others. He made them Listen and he Blessed them. We learned to run. To run with the thing behind. The thing that pulled and he sat upon it. The Master's Chariot that moved swift as we. He met with many other masters. A Great Master he met. They spoke of things so Great I could never understand. He taught us to pull others as we pulled the Master. The Master's Pack accepted this. These were Others of the Master's that he trusted. We trusted them as we trusted the Master. We fought Others like master, but also like us. They smelled of Others of our people and even our prey, and those that preyed on us. They had fur and fought as us with Claw and Tooth, but they Thought as Master. They were Demons. We fought them for they would not let us pass. There were too many and many died. We tried to protect master, but they took Him. That was wrong. We fought to bring him out, but every time they would fight us off. I knew He must not stay with demons so I went looking for Others. I spoke with them of the Master. Of the Great. Most would not listen until I defeated their Leader. I had watched Master do this and I knew to do it. They listened. They came. We attacked. Master was saved!

    We saw Him do something he had not done. He became one of Us. He could run as fast. He could speak our speak. He thanked us. But he still knew the things of a Master. But he had become a God. I lie in the snow before Him. All of The Pack did to. They knew Him. He was over us all. He was our God.

    Level 10
    Spoiler
    Show

    Ranger 5, Animal Lord 5

    Medium Humanoid (human)
    Hit Dice: 5d8+5 + 5d10+5 (59 hp)
    Initiative: +0
    Speed: 40 ft. (8 squares)
    Armor Class:10 (), touch, flat-footed
    Base Attack/Grapple:+10/+13
    Attack: Harpoon +16 melee/ranged (1d10+7)
    Full Attack: Harpoon +16/+11 melee/ranged (1d10+7)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft. (10 ft. with harpoon)
    Special Attacks: Favored Enemy (animals), Favored enemy (shapechanger), ranger spells, summon animal 1/day, wild aspect 1/day
    Special Qualities: Animal bond (wolflord), detect animals (canines), speak with animals 1/day, wild empathy +13 (+17 canines)
    Saves: Fort +9, Ref +8, Will +4
    Abilities Str 16, Dex 10, Con 12, Int 10, Wis 14, Cha 17
    Skills: Handle Animal +13 (+17 canines), Heal +10, Knowledge (nature) +10, Listen +12, Ride +9, Spot +12, Survival +15, Use Rope +8
    Feats: Combat Reflexes(HumB), Endurance(RangB), Mounted Combat, Natural Bond, Practiced Spellcaster, Track (RangB), Vexing Flanker
    Organization: Animal Companion
    Challenge Rating: 10
    Possessions: +3 Harpoon (9015 gp), Armor, masterwork studded Leather (175 gp), Boots of the Winterlands (2,500 gp), Collar of Healing (5,000 gp), Enemy Spirit Pouch (2,100 gp), Onyx Dog (15,500 gp), Tame Ash Rat (? gp), Troll Gut Rope (500 gp), War Sled (400 gp)

    Pack Size
    (not including wolves or fox)
    40 warbred riding dogs (6,000 gp) + Animal companion


    Animal Companion
    Spoiler
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    Warbeast Riding Dog
    Medium Animal
    Hit Dice: 9d8+36 (76 hp)
    Initiative: +4
    Speed: 50 ft. (8 squares)
    Armor Class: 24 (+4 Dex, +10 natural), touch 14, flat-footed 20
    Base Attack/Grapple: +6/+11
    Attack: Bite +11 melee (1d6+7)
    Full Attack: Bite +11/+6 melee (1d6+7)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: —
    Special Qualities: Devotion, evasion, link, low-light vision, scent, share spells
    Saves: Fort +10, Ref +10, Will +5
    Abilities: Str 21, Dex 18, Con 18, Int 2, Wis 14, Cha 8
    Skills: Balance +1, Jump +13, Listen +9, Spot +9, Swim +8, Survival +4*
    Feats: Alertness, Combat Reflexes, Darkstalker, Run, Track (B)
    Challenge Rating: 2

    Devotion (Ex): An animal companion gains a +4 morale bonus on Will saves against enchantment spells and effects.

    Evasion (Ex): If an animal companion is subjected to an attack that normally allows a Reflex saving throw for half damage, it takes no damage if it makes a successful saving throw.

    Link (Ex): Brolly can handle his animal companion as a free action, or push it as a move action, even if he doesn’t have any ranks in the Handle Animal skill. The druid gains a +4 circumstance bonus on all wild empathy checks and Handle Animal checks made regarding an animal companion.

    Share Spells (Ex): Brolly may have any spell (but not any spell-like ability) she casts upon herself also affect her animal companion. The animal companion must be within 5 feet of her at the time of casting to receive the benefit. If the spell or effect has a duration other than instantaneous, it stops affecting the animal companion if the companion moves farther than 5 feet away and will not affect the animal again, even if it returns to Brolly before the duration expires. Additionally, Brolly may cast a spell with a target of “You” on his animal companion (as a touch range spell) instead of on himself. Brolly and his animal companion can share spells even if the spells normally do not affect creatures of the companion’s type (animal).

    Trip (Ex): A wolf that hits with a bite attack can attempt to trip the opponent (+1 check modifier) as a free action without making a touch attack or provoking an attack of opportunity. If the attempt fails, the opponent cannot react to trip the wolf.

    Skills: Riding dogs have a +4 racial bonus on Jump checks.

    *Riding dogs have a +4 racial bonus on Survival checks when tracking by scent.


    Favored Enemy (Ex): Brolly gains a +2 bonus on Bluff, Listen, Sense Motive, Spot, and Survival checks when using these skills against animals. Likewise, he gets a +2 bonus on weapon damage rolls against such creatures.

    Against creatures with the shapechanger subtype these bonuses are doubled.

    Ranger Spells: Caster level 6th. (Spells per day: (2); Save DC 12 + spell level)

    Sample Prepared Spells
    1st - Animal Friend, Longstrider


    Generations past and we were many. No pack ever in the world like ours. No pack was ever so many. No pack had a God. He could make the smallest of us grow bigger than the biggest! We fought like One though, nothing could get in our way! The great dumb ferocious others, the little white sneaky others. They were not others any more. We were all The Pack. Everything that sniffed and pawed and howled. As one we went for the colder lands, where it hurt even to breathe. We smelled as One. We found as One. We did the Alpha God's bidding and discovered things. The place where the Demon Master/Others were strongest. We made attacks and fled. Bit and ran. We made them bleed and bleed but never could they touch us. Then came a 2nd god, the demon-god. As our God was of the Brotherhood, becoming canine, so was the demon of the wolverine. We leaped for him, and he ignored our strongest bites. We ran at him in a wall of fur and fang, but he waded through us like a sea of waves. They then did battle, taking many shapes, with claw and tooth, fist and blade they fought. More ferocious than any beasts, and with secrets known only to gods they fought. My god was glorious, but the demon-god was more terrible than anything we had ever known. He took my master in a hold and locked his jaws. Nothing my master did would make him come loose. As the demon held my god weakened. His mind then filled mine and I knew what to do. I shouted to all, and we pulled the two gods locked in death with our teeth and into the red flower. My master managed to shout and from the flower came the rat we had been told never to bite. It climbed up the demon-god's back and clouds came from it. Red flowers bloomed all over it and it writhed, finally as both were covered in the burning light it released master to roll in the snow. My master, bleeding and burnt coughed a word and he faded into my body. There I kept him warm as we all ran and ran and ran from the demon-god...

    Level 15
    Spoiler
    Show
    Ranger 8, Animal Lord 7

    Medium Humanoid (human)
    Hit Dice: 8d8+8 + 7d10+7 (89 hp)
    Initiative: +0
    Speed: 40 ft. (8 squares)
    Armor Class:17 (+4 wild studded leather, +3 natural), touch 10, flat-footed 17
    Base Attack/Grapple:+15/+18
    Attack: +3 returning harpoon +21 melee/ranged (1d10+7)
    Full Attack: +3 returning harpoon +21/+16/+11 melee/ranged (1d10+7)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft. (10 ft. with harpoon)
    Special Attacks: Animal growth 1/day, favored Enemy (animals), ranger spells, summon animal 1/day, wild aspect 2/day, wild shape 3/day
    Special Qualities: Animal bond (wolflord), detect animals (canines), speak with animals 1/day, swift tracker, wild empathy +23 (+27 canines)
    Saves: Fort +12, Ref +11, Will +6
    Abilities Str 16, Dex 10, Con 12, Int 10, Wis 14, Cha 18
    Skills: Handle Animal +23 (+27 canines), Heal +14, Knowledge (nature) +17, Listen +18, Ride +17, Spot +18, Survival +21, Use Rope +12
    Feats: Animal Defiance, Chain Spell, Combat Reflexes(HumB), Endurance(RangB), Improved Trip, Mounted Combat, Natural Bond, Practiced Spellcaster, Track (RangB), Vexing Flanker
    Organization: Animal Companion
    Challenge Rating: 15
    Possessions: +3 Returning Harpoon (16,015 gp), +1 Wild studded leather (16,000 gp), Amulet of Natural Armor +3, Boots of the Winterlands (2,500 gp), Collar of Healing (5,000 gp), Enemy Spirit Pouch (2,100 gp), Onyx Dog (15,500 gp), Runners of Speed (+20 ft.) (100,000 gp), Tame Ash Rat (? gp), Troll Gut Rope (500 gp), War Sled (400 gp)

    Pack Size
    (not including wolves or fox)
    60 warbred riding dogs (9,000 gp) + Animal companion


    Animal Companion
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    Warbeast Riding Dog
    Medium Animal
    Hit Dice: 11d8+44 (93 hp)
    Initiative: +4
    Speed: 50 ft. (8 squares)
    Armor Class: 26 (+4 Dex, +12 natural), touch 14, flat-footed 22
    Base Attack/Grapple: +8/+14
    Attack: Bite +14 melee (1d6+9)
    Full Attack: Bite +14/+9 melee (1d6+9)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: —
    Special Qualities: Devotion, evasion, link, low-light vision, scent, share spells
    Saves: Fort +11, Ref +11, Will +5
    Abilities: Str 22, Dex 19, Con 18, Int 2, Wis 14, Cha 8
    Skills: Balance +1, Jump +13, Listen +11, Spot +11, Swim +8, Survival +4*
    Feats: Alertness, Combat Reflexes, Darkstalker, Run, Track (B)
    Challenge Rating: 2

    Devotion (Ex): An animal companion gains a +4 morale bonus on Will saves against enchantment spells and effects.

    Evasion (Ex): If an animal companion is subjected to an attack that normally allows a Reflex saving throw for half damage, it takes no damage if it makes a successful saving throw.

    Link (Ex): Brolly can handle his animal companion as a free action, or push it as a move action, even if he doesn’t have any ranks in the Handle Animal skill. The druid gains a +4 circumstance bonus on all wild empathy checks and Handle Animal checks made regarding an animal companion.

    Share Spells (Ex): Brolly may have any spell (but not any spell-like ability) she casts upon herself also affect her animal companion. The animal companion must be within 5 feet of her at the time of casting to receive the benefit. If the spell or effect has a duration other than instantaneous, it stops affecting the animal companion if the companion moves farther than 5 feet away and will not affect the animal again, even if it returns to Brolly before the duration expires. Additionally, Brolly may cast a spell with a target of “You” on his animal companion (as a touch range spell) instead of on himself. Brolly and his animal companion can share spells even if the spells normally do not affect creatures of the companion’s type (animal).

    Trip (Ex): A wolf that hits with a bite attack can attempt to trip the opponent (+1 check modifier) as a free action without making a touch attack or provoking an attack of opportunity. If the attempt fails, the opponent cannot react to trip the wolf.

    Skills: Riding dogs have a +4 racial bonus on Jump checks.

    *Riding dogs have a +4 racial bonus on Survival checks when tracking by scent.


    Favored Enemy (Ex): Brolly gains a +2 bonus on Bluff, Listen, Sense Motive, Spot, and Survival checks when using these skills against animals. Likewise, he gets a +2 bonus on weapon damage rolls against such creatures.

    Against creatures with the shapechanger subtype these bonuses are doubled.

    Ranger Spells: Caster level 8th. (Spells per day: (2/1); Save DC 12 + spell level)

    Sample Prepared Spells
    1st - Animal Friend
    2nd - Leap Into Animal

    Swift Tracker (Ex): Brolly can move at his normal speed while following tracks without taking the normal –5 penalty. He takes only a –10 penalty (instead of the normal –20) when moving at up to twice normal speed while tracking.

    Woodland Stride (Ex): Brolly may move through any sort of undergrowth (such as natural thorns, briers, overgrown areas, and similar terrain) at his normal speed and without taking damage or suffering any other impairment. However, thorns, briers, and overgrown areas that are enchanted or magically manipulated to impede motion still affect him.


    For three days we ran without stopping, many of the brothers falling behind, but they knew our scent and would find us. We knew we must find more of the race of Masters. They would know how to heal our god from the demon fever. We smelled the smell of hot meats and followed the smell to a great Master-made mountain. There they came to look at the sea of fur we were. I approached and my master left me. They gathered him up and disappeared inside. I tried to follow but they spoke Words of Command, and I stayed out. I howled though in sadness and the entire pack picked it up.

    The night light grew large and fat and finally he came out. We were overjoyed and leaped upon him, and he laughed his approval as we showed him our love. He would return within many times, and when he came out knew things would he teach. If before we fought as one, we know fought as a God itself. Such secrets he taught us. He would whisper to us all, and speak to us, and as his hackles rose so would ours. Hate and love he taught us, of such greatness we felt we would burst. Love for him, and hate for the demon-gods. He took our form then one night, and spoke to us, told us of the great war against the demon-god. He put into us that love and hate til we could hold it no more. He then threw his head back in a howl that brought a madness to us. He then began to run, and we with him. FOR OUR GOD WE WOULD SLAY THEM ALL! DEMON-GOD AND ALL!

    And we did. We poured over, and if be fore we had been waves, we were now an avalanche. We fought the demon-god did we all all, beat him down and drug him where we wished, and through it would wade our God, who pierced him with many of his god-weapons. We took mouthfuls of his hide and with the strength of hundreds we pulled him apart and then ripped the pieces in hunger and lust. We did not stop until only red snow steamed in the night. WE HAD WON! OURS WAS THE GREATEST GOD! WOOOO! AAAAWWWWWWHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!


    Level 20
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    Ranger 8, Animal Lord 10, Crusader 2

    Medium Humanoid (human)
    Hit Dice: 8d8+24 + 10d10+30 + 2d10+6 (162 hp)
    Initiative: +0
    Speed: 40 ft. (8 squares)
    Armor Class:23 (+8 armor, +5 natural), touch 10, flat-footed 23
    Base Attack/Grapple:+20/+24
    Attack: +5 returning harpoon +29 melee/ranged (1d10+11)
    Full Attack: Harpoon +29/+24/+19/+14 melee/ranged (1d10+11)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft. (10 ft. with harpoon)
    Special Attacks: Animal growth 1/day, favored enemy (animals), favored enemy (shapechangers), ranger spells, summon animal 1/day, wild aspect 2/day, wild shape 3/day
    Special Qualities: Animal bond (wolflord), detect animals (canines), speak with animals 1/day, swift tracker, maneuvers & stances, wild empathy +31 (+35 canines)
    Saves: Fort +19, Ref +13, Will +12
    Abilities Str 18, Dex 10, Con 16, Int 10, Wis 14, Cha 24
    Skills: Balance +5, Handle Animal +29 (+33 canines), Heal +15, Knowledge (nature) +15, Listen +22, Ride +20, Spot +22, Survival +20, Use Rope +15
    Feats: Animal Defiance, Animal Control, Chain Spell, Combat Reflexes(HumB), Endurance(RangB), Improved Trip, Mounted Combat, Natural Bond, Practiced Spellcaster, Track (RangB), Vexing Flanker
    Organization: Animal Companion
    Challenge Rating: 20
    Possessions: +5 Returning Harpoon (16,015 gp), +5 Wild studded leather (40,000 gp), Amulet of Natural Armor +5 (50,000 gp), Boots of the Winterlands (2,500 gp), Collar of Healing (5,000 gp), Enemy Spirit Pouch (2,100 gp), Onyx Dog (15,500 gp), Lantern of Revealing (30,000 gp), Manual of Bodily Health +4 (110,000 gp), Runners of Speed (+20 ft.) (100,000 gp), Tame Ash Rat (? gp), Tome of Leadership and Influence +4 (110,000 gp), Troll Gut Rope (500 gp), War Sled (400 gp)

    Pack Size
    (not including wolves or fox)
    80 warbred riding dogs (12,000 gp) + Animal companion

    Animal Companion
    Spoiler
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    Warbeast Riding Dog
    Medium Animal
    Hit Dice: 13d8+52 (110 hp)
    Initiative: +5
    Speed: 50 ft. (8 squares)
    Armor Class: 29 (+5 Dex, +14 natural), touch 15, flat-footed 24
    Base Attack/Grapple: +9/+15
    Attack: Bite +15 melee (1d6+9)
    Full Attack: Bite +15/+19 melee (1d6+9)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: —
    Special Qualities: Devotion, evasion, link, low-light vision, scent, share spells
    Saves: Fort +12, Ref +13, Will +6
    Abilities: Str 23, Dex 20, Con 18, Int 2, Wis 14, Cha 9
    Skills: Balance +1, Jump +17, Listen +11, Spot +11, Swim +8, Survival +4*
    Feats: Alertness, Combat Reflexes, Darkstalker, Protection Devotion, Run, Track (B)
    Challenge Rating: 3

    Devotion (Ex): An animal companion gains a +4 morale bonus on Will saves against enchantment spells and effects.

    Evasion (Ex): If an animal companion is subjected to an attack that normally allows a Reflex saving throw for half damage, it takes no damage if it makes a successful saving throw.

    Improved Evasion (Ex): When subjected to an attack that normally allows a Reflex saving throw for half damage, an animal companion takes no damage if it makes a successful saving throw and only half damage if the saving throw fails.

    Link (Ex): Brolly can handle his animal companion as a free action, or push it as a move action, even if he doesn’t have any ranks in the Handle Animal skill. The druid gains a +4 circumstance bonus on all wild empathy checks and Handle Animal checks made regarding an animal companion.

    Share Spells (Ex): Brolly may have any spell (but not any spell-like ability) she casts upon herself also affect her animal companion. The animal companion must be within 5 feet of her at the time of casting to receive the benefit. If the spell or effect has a duration other than instantaneous, it stops affecting the animal companion if the companion moves farther than 5 feet away and will not affect the animal again, even if it returns to Brolly before the duration expires. Additionally, Brolly may cast a spell with a target of “You” on his animal companion (as a touch range spell) instead of on himself. Brolly and his animal companion can share spells even if the spells normally do not affect creatures of the companion’s type (animal).

    Trip (Ex): A wolf that hits with a bite attack can attempt to trip the opponent (+1 check modifier) as a free action without making a touch attack or provoking an attack of opportunity. If the attempt fails, the opponent cannot react to trip the wolf.

    Skills: Riding dogs have a +4 racial bonus on Jump checks.

    *Riding dogs have a +4 racial bonus on Survival checks when tracking by scent.


    Favored Enemy (Ex): Brolly gains a +2 bonus on Bluff, Listen, Sense Motive, Spot, and Survival checks when using these skills against animals. Likewise, he gets a +2 bonus on weapon damage rolls against such creatures.

    Against creatures with the shapechanger subtype these bonuses are doubled.

    Ranger Spells: Caster level 8th. (Spells per day: (2/1); Save DC 12 + spell level)

    Sample Prepared Spells
    1st - Animal Friend, Longstrider
    2nd - Leap Into Animal

    Swift Tracker (Ex): Brolly can move at his normal speed while following tracks without taking the normal –5 penalty. He takes only a –10 penalty (instead of the normal –20) when moving at up to twice normal speed while tracking.

    Woodland Stride (Ex): Brolly may move through any sort of undergrowth (such as natural thorns, briers, overgrown areas, and similar terrain) at his normal speed and without taking damage or suffering any other impairment. However, thorns, briers, and overgrown areas that are enchanted or magically manipulated to impede motion still affect him.


    How To Become A Pack God
    Spoiler
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    You get yourself an animal companion. You spend a couple months with it and you can give him the Warbeast Template. Cast Animal Friendship on him which allows him to learn 2 extra tricks. By 20th level this dog knows 15 tricks and has 13 HD. He's basically become a cohort.

    One trick your animal companion can be taught to do is signal others to do tricks. With a signal it can go round up certain dogs and take them hunting, or tell them to come defend their God or any number of interesting things.

    Buy yourself a few puppies. Riding dogs are cheap, plentiful and breed well. Or get a friendly female and let your animal companion make some for you. Train each of them as a Warbeast. The Animal Friendship concretes it as well. You may have 12 dogs total with Animal Friendship.

    You have started your church at this point. You have a high priest and his power base.

    Let them breed some more. Train them all as Warbeasts. This is your congregation. A pack of many dozens of ferocious dogs.

    You can speak with them, smell what they smell, get down to their level, but they adore you. You are strong, you are wise, you are force above all canine.

    Wild Empathy acts as diplomacy, right? Well now, by 20th level you have a Wild Empathy base score in the 30's. Wake up and call forth your High Priest and his Acolytes. Once you manage to roll a few 15-20's, you have yourself a Fanatic Pack. Why is this? Well, according to the Epic Level Handbook, diplomacy roll of 50 will turn Helpful creatures (which your pack is) to Fanatics. For 8 days straight they gain a +2 bonus to Strength and Con, a +1 bonus to will saves, and they will give their very lives to your cause.

    You do not need to be epic-leveled to do this, just possessed of an incredible Diplomacy (in this case, Wild Empathy) score.

    With your ability to Rebuke and Command them as well via the Animal Control feat, you can command them 10 times a day mentally, controlling their very actions without them needing to know any tricks. Then cast Leap Into Animal to control directly another. You can now have at least 10 dogs under your direct control and able to do anything you like without tricks. The rest just fight like fanatics.

    You hold their very lives in the palm of your hand.

    Fighting With Your Worshipers
    First off you need to make use of the Teamwork trick through Handle Animal. Awareness is good, but Massed Charged is... deific.

    Always have at least one layer of dogs circle your opponents. Preferably two. He cannot reach you without triggering AoOs, and all the magebred dogs have Combat Reflexes, allowing at least 4 attacks each. One of these can be a trip

    With Animal Growth you can also do special tricks. Through Animal Lord you normally can only affect 1 animal. However, with the Chain Spell feat you can grow that 1 plus 7 more. Eight giant warbred, fanatic beasts.

    Any one of these dogs can be the main attacker, granting you a +4 flanking bonus thanks to Vexing Flanker. You then return the favor with your Vanguard Strike and Iron Guard's Glare. Remember that dogs all have trip attacks. Symbiotic relationship to the max.

    Here's something fun to do as well. Get a harpoon and tie the attaching rope (this is part of the weapon) around your giant fanatic. Have them go in opposite directions. Now hurl, or, if you can reach, jab them with the harpoon. Command the dogs to pull and then stop. The figure is now unable to move. At all. He can remove the harpoon, but he now takes all the original damage. In fact, you might even want to try this again with another few dogs. You control the dogs, they control the ropes, the rope controls your opponent. Take him wherever you wish. Maybe keep jabbing them in (at least several dogs need to hold a few harpoons on their persons) if it's a very strong creature. Get enough and not even a dragon can hope to get away.

    Oh, and I didn't mention the War Sled. Yeah, ride-by attacks are FUN. In fact, have the entire pack move with it. Ride skill is equivalent to AC as well, so you can turn them away from a potential attack.


    The Pack
    Spoiler
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    Brolly's pack includes Riding Dogs, Dire Wolves, Wolves, and Arctic Foxes.

    Dire Wolves are the elite guard of Brolly's army and tend to be the ones in charge of pulling his warsled.

    Arctic Foxes are the sneaks of the army. They go looking about, fetch an item, and return with it.

    Wolves are the hunters and trackers.

    Riding Dogs are the common people of the group, though all can be called upon to perform practically any service. The overwhelming majority of the pack is riding dogs.


    Training
    Spoiler
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    Every canine can be taught 6 tricks. However, because of Brolly's Handle Animal skills he can 'push' any of the animals to perform near any service of which they are physically able.

    Every canine has the following tricks known:
    Attack
    Defend
    Teamwork (awareness & mass charge)

    The other three tricks is specific to the canine itself, and some Brolly has trained for specific tasks. However, certain types he generally trains as the following:

    Riding Dog - Guard, Perform, Stay
    Arctic Fox - Fetch, Hide, Seek
    Wolf - Down, Seek, Track
    Dire Wolf - Down, Guard, Work


    Warbeast Riding Dog stats
    Spoiler
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    Medium Animal
    Hit Dice: 3d8+12 (25 hp)
    Initiative: +2
    Speed: 50 ft. (8 squares)
    Armor Class: 16 (+2 Dex, +4 natural), touch 12, flat-footed 14
    Base Attack/Grapple: +2/+6
    Attack: Bite +6 melee (1d6+4)
    Full Attack: Bite +6 melee (1d6+4)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: —
    Special Qualities: Low-light vision, scent
    Saves: Fort +7, Ref +5, Will +3
    Abilities: Str 18, Dex 15, Con 18, Int 2, Wis 14, Cha 6
    Skills: Jump +10, Listen +7, Spot +7, Swim +5, Survival +2*
    Feats: Alertness, Combat Reflexes, Track (B),
    Challenge Rating: 1

    Combat
    If trained for war, these animals can make trip attacks just as wolves do (see the Wolf entry). A riding dog can fight while carrying a rider, but the rider cannot also attack unless he or she succeeds on a Ride check.

    Trip (Ex): A wolf that hits with a bite attack can attempt to trip the opponent (+1 check modifier) as a free action without making a touch attack or provoking an attack of opportunity. If the attempt fails, the opponent cannot react to trip the wolf.

    Skills: Riding dogs have a +4 racial bonus on Jump checks.

    *Riding dogs have a +4 racial bonus on Survival checks when tracking by scent.


    Warbeast Wolf stats
    Spoiler
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    Medium Animal
    Hit Dice: 3d8+12 (25 hp)
    Initiative: +2
    Speed: 60 ft. (12 squares)
    Armor Class: 14 (+2 Dex, +2 natural), touch 12, flat-footed 12
    Base Attack/Grapple: +2/+5
    Attack: Bite +6 melee (1d6+4)
    Full Attack: Bite +6 melee (1d6+4)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: Trip
    Special Qualities: Low-light vision, scent
    Saves: Fort +7, Ref +5, Will +3
    Abilities: Str 16, Dex 15, Con 18, Int 2, Wis 14, Cha 6
    Skills: Balance +3, Hide +2, Listen +5, Move Silently +3, Spot +5, Survival +2*
    Feats: Combat Reflexes, Track(B), Weapon Focus (bite)
    Challenge Rating: 1
    Advancement: 4–6 HD (Large)
    Level Adjustment: —

    Trip (Ex): A wolf that hits with a bite attack can attempt to trip the opponent (+3 check modifier) as a free action without making a touch attack or provoking an attack of opportunity. If the attempt fails, the opponent cannot react to trip the wolf.

    Skills: *Wolves have a +4 racial bonus on Survival checks when tracking by scent.


    Warbred Dire Wolf
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    Large Animal
    Hit Dice: 7d8+35 (66 hp)
    Initiative: +2
    Speed: 60 ft. (10 squares)
    Armor Class: 14 (–1 size, +2 Dex, +3 natural), touch 11, flat-footed 12
    Base Attack/Grapple: +5/+18
    Attack: Bite +14 melee (1d8+13)
    Full Attack: Bite +14 melee (1d8+13)
    Space/Reach: 10 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: Trip
    Special Qualities: Low-light vision, scent
    Saves: Fort +10, Ref +7, Will +7
    Abilities: Str 28, Dex 15, Con 20, Int 2, Wis 14, Cha 10
    Skills: Balance +3, Hide +0, Listen +7, Move Silently +4, Spot +7, Survival +2*
    Feats: Alertness, Run, Track(B), Weapon Focus (bite)
    Challenge Rating: 3

    Trip (Ex): A dire wolf that hits with a bite attack can attempt to trip its opponent (+13 check modifier) as a free action without making a touch attack or provoking an attack of opportunity. If the attempt fails, the opponent cannot react to trip the dire wolf.

    Skills: A dire wolf has a +2 racial bonus on Hide, Listen, Move Silently, and Spot checks.

    *It also has a +4 racial bonus on Survival checks when tracking by scent.



    Note: Now, Animal Lord is not the strongest of the PrC's, and many of its abilities can be duplicated elsewhere. Animals also aren't the strongest things in creation, but Animal Lord lords over animals, thus though I could make a stronger class using undead or constructs, when it comes to animals, Brolly ain't a slob. The way I've used it here is the strongest I can come up with and remain true to the nature of the PrC and using its levels. Please consider that when determining its strength.



    Sources
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    Complete Adventurer
    Animal Lord class
    Natural Bond feat

    Complete Arcane
    Chain Spell feat
    Practiced Spellcaster feat

    Frostburn
    Arctic fox creature
    Harpoon weapon
    Warsled transport
    Runners of Speed item

    Magic of Eberron
    Leap Into Animal spell

    Magic Item Compendium
    Collar of Healing, Enemy Spirit Pouch, Lantern of Revealing, and Troll Gut Rope items

    Masters of the Wild
    Animal Control feat
    Animal Defiance feat

    Player's Handbook 3.5
    Ranger class

    Player's Handbook II
    Teamwork trick (Handle Animal)
    Vexing Flanker feat

    Tome of Battle
    Crusader class

    Monster Manual II
    Ash Rat creature
    Warbeast template

    Unearthed Arcana
    Ranger Simple Variant

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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."


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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    That's the last of 'em.

    On your mark, get set, judge!
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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."


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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Aww, was hoping to see a shark lord. Almost made one but ended up liking my other better.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by The Vorpal Tribble View Post
    Aww, was hoping to see a shark lord. Almost made one but ended up liking my other better.
    Apelord and Horselord were also ignored. Still, 7 entries using 5 different versions between them is variety enough.
    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."


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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by Private-Prinny View Post
    Apelord and Horselord were also ignored. Still, 7 entries using 5 different versions between them is variety enough.
    I considered a Horselord for a while.
    Iron Chef in the Playground veteran since Round IV.

    Who made my awesome Dwarf Hexblade avatar, you ask? BRC did!
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    I did too! I wanted to make the fastest character I could, but then I realized that he wasn't too optimal or flavorful...just fast. It was rather underwhelming.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by Amphetryon View Post
    I considered a Horselord for a while.
    Yeah, I did too. I thought it was one of the easier aspects to optimize, since its Wild Aspect lasts for hours instead of rounds; you could make a pretty speedy character with Horselord.
    You can call me Draz.
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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.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    I was tinkering with a duskblade for the horselord--run in, wail your enemy, and get out of range before they can say ouch. It just lacked soul.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    I saw all three of my best ideas represented (better than I would have). My first thought when I saw Animal Lord, was Bear Warrior 5 fits nicely in there. I also, considered Primeval for a time, but the shifting mechanic was clunkier than BW's, even if it is more versatile. The build that I had settled on focused on getting a Wild Cohort pumped up. Every time I read the class though, I missed the line about stacking for AC advancement, so I never even considered Beastlord until I read the entries just now. Why did they have to hide that after the crap about bonus to Handle Animal?

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Man, if I would have entered, I would have totally stacked Apelord with Girallon Claws bound to my Shoulder to get rend twice. Claw Claw SPLURT!
    Quote Originally Posted by Fax Celestis View Post
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