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  1. - Top - End - #121
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    I briefly considered and Anthromorphic Ape Ranger/Apelord with Italian plumbers as a favoured enemy. The levels in Hulking Hurler kind of overshadowed the build.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Got the sharklord but it was so dumb I didn't submitted Relied on "custom" magic item to make it breathe air and stuff. Fiendish template for the PC to get fiendish grafts, especially wings.

    Ended up with either a fiendish goliath (for druid ACF, and a burrowing shark animal companion) or a fiendish tri-kreen for some mounted combat delirium.

    Anyways, I liked the idea of a flying, air breathing, possibly burrowing shark to serve as a mount for a druid creating wall of water in which he summons moar sharks.
    Last edited by DanReiv; 2010-08-10 at 03:56 AM.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by DanReiv View Post
    Anyways, I liked the idea of a flying, air breathing, possibly burrowing shark to serve as a mount for a druid creating wall of water in which he summons moar sharks.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by Keld Denar View Post
    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!
    Just as a thought, since nobody used Apelord:

    Barbarian 3/Totemist 3/Apelord 10/Totem Rager 4.

    EDIT: Hadozee race.
    Last edited by Amphetryon; 2010-08-10 at 09:03 AM.
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  5. - Top - End - #125
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    I too planned a Raptoran Birdlord, but gave up after I realized that 10 levels in Stormtalon would be pretty much 5 times more efficient in getting what I wanted.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by Adumbration View Post
    I too planned a Raptoran Birdlord, but gave up after I realized that 10 levels in Stormtalon would be pretty much 5 times more efficient in getting what I wanted.
    That sounds like a common concern for all the Animal Lords in this contest, relative to other Base Classes or PrCs.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    I'm now picturing a halfling ranger/paladin/horselord/halfling outrider with Devoted Tracker and Natural Bond...it's My Little Pony of Justice!

  8. - Top - End - #128
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Yeah, pretty much my problem. Only build I could think of was optimizing the full BAB progression and full Animal Companion progression. I was thinking about a build, but it turned out to be way too feat intensive. I was trying to capitalize on Animal Lord's full animal companion progression vs ranger's half progression.

    Ranger 4/Scout 5/Beastmaster 1/Birdlord 10

    Essentially for the first 9-10 levels, a Swift Hunter archery build with a hatred towards arcanists. RPing the Ranger's weak animal companion (owl) bond as causing its death, causing him to desire a greater bond with his next companion (manifesting in the beastmaster dip at level 6 to nab a dire eagle companion).

    He has a powerful companion that begins to lag behind once he finishes off his scout levels, but picks up again once he hits birdlord. Ends with effective 19 druid levels for AC with Natural Bond. 18 BAB. Solves full-attack skirmish issues through mounted archery (not necessarily with the feat, however). Only problem was pumping up damage more. TWFing Hand Crossbows with Ranged Weapon Mastery, Crossbow Sniper, Rapidshot, and Splitting enchantment was very nice, but ended up being way too feat intensive without fighter/rogue dipping for extra feats.

  9. - Top - End - #129
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by Amphetryon View Post
    That sounds like a common concern for all the Animal Lords in this contest, relative to other Base Classes or PrCs.
    What you need to do, says the guy who's never going to enter this contest for lack of optimizing chops, is squint and turn your head sideways, and suddenly instead of trying to make a powerful/unique/interesting character that uses Animal Lord, you're trying to make the most powerful/unique/interesting Animal Lord you can - which is subtly not quite the same thing at all.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Aww man, it was just shark week too... No ubercharger sharks?

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by Amphetryon View Post
    That sounds like a common concern for all the Animal Lords in this contest, relative to other Base Classes or PrCs.
    Hmmm, I disagree. I don't think my entry (I'm not saying which one it is) would be able to do its thing as well if you replaced its Animal Lord levels with any other class.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Hmm, somewhat glad I didn't submit now, my Snakelord build wasn't really up to scratch compared to the couple that ended up here.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by Draz74 View Post
    Hmmm, I disagree. I don't think my entry (I'm not saying which one it is) would be able to do its thing as well if you replaced its Animal Lord levels with any other class.
    I look forward to the explanation of how this is so.

    EDIT: Note that in my comment, I said 'common' and not 'universal.'
    Last edited by Amphetryon; 2010-08-10 at 11:03 AM.
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  14. - Top - End - #134
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    My judgings. I will add'em one at a time... for added suspense.
    Bertran Urrni
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    Originality: 4. I knew I'd see at least one Raptoran Birdlord. Cancer Mage did surprise me, though.
    Power: 2.5 Targets immune to poison or disease or precision damage (all are pretty common, and usually they have all three) are immune to Bertran. Even then, he deals low damage and defeats opponents by wearing them down slowly. You say 'poison and disease make him too dangerous to close with'... but that's not true. Poison and disease are easy to heal once you get rid of Bertran and he has very little in the way of defense. A bit more Wis synergy would have done you good.
    Elegance: 2.5. The build looks wonky to me. It's not party-friendly at all. I think I maybe should have given a lower score, but somehoe I think 3 is okay. Also, your backstory was very long and I did not really like it, though I didn't take any points for that.
    Use of Secret Ingredient: 4. You really built it around Animal Lord and found synergy in Cancer Mage.



    Sway
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    Originality: 5. LA always surprises me in Iron Chef. Racial Hit Dice are always 'OMG!'... and I have a thing for yuan-tis. Surprised me in a very good way. And... a Bard? Cloaked Dancer?! You blew my mind here. Excellent.
    Power: 5. I think you might even have underestimated your own build. You are very versatile and Soul Eater adds A LOT
    Elegance: 3.5. Everything meshes perfectly. If not for the ECL 20 thing, I would have given you even more here. I like the mechanical and thematic synergies.
    Use of Secret Ingredient: 4.5. I like what you did and you indeed benefit from Animal Lord; it is without a doubt integral to the build, improving the tricks you picked up elsewhere. Very, very good. Congrats.


    Firstbear Bearfist
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    Originality: 1. People have been talking about this in this forum for months now.
    Power: 5. It's among the strongest non-dubious melee builds.
    Elegance: 3. I have a few issues with Deepwarden + Fist of the Forest. Lord of the underground forests...?
    Use of Secret Ingredient: 3. It contributes to the bear theme, if nothing else.


    The twisted tales of Felix, the twisted tales of Felix, the twisted tales of Felix the cat...
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    Originality: 3.5. You use a lot of well-known tricks, but reminding Felix the cat put a smile in my face.
    Power: 5. I'm handing out a lot of 5s this time around, based on my expectations for animal lord... but you use known tricks because they work, after all.
    Elegance: 2.5 Four base classes and a dip in prestige class... I dislike the Lawful alignment also; it does not seem to fit the cat theme... the psychoactive skin is also in this category.
    Use of Secret Ingredient: 3. It contributes to the cat theme, progresses an an animal companion and allows you to make him big. It's not the focus of the build, but it helps somewhat.


    Ruszel
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    Originality: 3.5. Well, you created an organization. This adds a few points. The rest is pretty standard. More beastmaster, more factotum, yadda yadda.
    Power: 3.5. He is not a powerhouse, but he has a lot of tricks.
    Elegance: 5. I'm sure you expected a hit here, but since you explained your flaws so honestly and did it more for flavor than anything else, I think you deserve a 5 here more than any other contestant.
    Use of Secret Ingredient: 4. You used the class to fit your theme, not the other way around. That's something I really like. Excellent.


    Urog
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    Originality: 4.5. OK, it surprised me. It's almost an owlbear in PC form.
    Power: 4.5. Most of expected melee's fighting prowess... with built-in flight. Useful. Solid. You already mentioned the shortcomings of low Int, so I'll leave it at that.
    Elegance: 2. Yeah, that's low. Primeval (dire eagle) surprised me but seems a bit out of place. A bearlord that decides to become an eagle? That's... strange. The kind of thing I wouldn't OK in a game I DM'ed.
    Use of Secret Ingredient: 4. Animal Lord is needed for your intended fighting style.


    Brolly
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    Originality: 5. Using Animal Power to become some kind of god? Unexpected.
    Power: 3.5. The build is not really that powerful, since it depends on the pack and the pack is really squishy.
    Elegance: 2.5. While very interesting, it's not a build that would actually fly in most games.
    Use of Secret Ingredient: 5. You really use Animal Lord to the fullest and it is without a doubt the core of the build.


    Judging done!
    Last edited by true_shinken; 2010-08-10 at 01:14 PM.

  15. - Top - End - #135
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Burtram Urrni

    Originality: cancer mage? cleric? canít say I was expecting those. 4

    Power: 3 is this guy a very good scout, heck yeah. do I personally feel he can do more than that, not really. I have real concerns that he will be able to maintain the distance he needs, even with his summons.

    Elegance: 2: hello random cleric dip, and hello thought out scout dip too.

    Secret ingredient: 2: you used all 10 levels, Iíll give you that; however go back and read you descriptions of what your build can do, your only mention of birdlord ablities is to call them superlative: how then is birdlord critical to this build, and not Cancer Mage which you constantly rave about?


    Sway

    Originality: Psi Yaun Ti, nature bard, CLOAKED DANCER?! 5.

    Power: 4; social kombat and ambush is thy game, and you do it with scary efficiency, the inclusion of roblairs and def sweep lets you, in theory, rack up poison hits. sadly youíll have to rely on your bite for this, however props for remembering the triple capsule for your weapon, I feel very bad for whoever you ambush.

    Elegance: 5: your taking a hit for the blatant soul eater dip, but that is blunted by A) it fits the rest of your build nicely, and B) your comprehensive presentation.

    Secret ingredient: 4: you make the most of itís abilities to complement your ambushing strategies, and supplement your main form of attack, poison. very well done.

    Fistbear Bearfist

    Originality: I want to give you 5, I really do, this is just too funny and cool. unfortunately thereís a unbearable little gnome in my my head screaming that this was bear centric build was bound to happen and Iíve seen the general basis of the build before and I canít shut him up. 3

    Power: its a beary beardfist, I highly doubt there are many things you canít just maul to death. 4

    Ellegance. 3; your dip-tastic, they synergise well, but still, dips are everywhere.

    Secret ingredient: 3: you only grab 5 levels, and those levels donít really add anything besides sticking another bear into your build and becoming legal for the contest. strong presentation helped you here.

    Felix

    Originality: 2: I loved the old felix the cat cartoons! sadly this isnít him. bonus points for interesting story though.

    Power: 1 what exactly does this build DO? you give a list of indivuidual tricks but do not spell out how the relate to eachother as a coheasive whole.

    Ellegance: 1 dips, dips, and more dips

    Secret Ingredient: 2 you took all 10 levels, however since you donít bother explaining a damn thing; thats the best I can give.
    Quote Originally Posted by my judging criteria
    Also note the following: I expect participants to explain IN DETAIL everything you feel your build can do, and failure to do so will result in a lot of 0-2s in all scores
    Ruzel:

    Originality: I was expecting assisn + snakelord, so 3.

    power: 2, In my experience you are vastly overestimating how much you can do with just standstill in combat, if Ruzel ever gets into a situation he canít talk out of, heíd be in ALOT of trouble. he can sneak in well enough, itís getting out that will be the problem.

    Elegance: 3 Uncanny trickster to take snakelord is exceptiable, but blatent assin dip is a ding to the score:

    Secret Ingredient: 2 Iím going to be blunt; it feels tacked onto a very unfocused build. maybe its cause you ran out of time; but I cannot see why he had to be a snakelord and not say moar factotum or other skill trick boosting class.

    Urog:

    Originality: you used a PRC Iíve never heard of. 4

    Power: once again, I am unsure of what you canít quite just flat out maul to death. also, I love the snatch get around. 4

    Elegance: no real dips that I can see what so ever, this build advances quite simplely. and I rather like that. 5

    Use of secret ingrediant: 4 taking a hit due to not taking all 10 levels by my count.

    Brolly:

    Originality: oh diplomacy, is their nothing you canít do? 4

    Power: your power is directly related to how many pooches you have with you but still you should overcome any land based threat. 4

    Elegance: 4.dinged do to tacked on crusader.

    Use of Ingredient: 5; you built this character with the abilities in mind, to make you into a god of the pack. very well done.
    Last edited by 9mm; 2010-08-10 at 01:49 PM.
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  16. - Top - End - #136
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Looks like Sway is leading by quite a few points.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by true_shinken View Post
    Looks like Sway is leading by quite a few points.
    Yeah, about that -- there's a lot about Sway that's impressive, but isn't LA Buyoff an optional rule from UA, and therefore explicitly against the rules of Iron Chef? I would think that would be a massive penalty to Elegance.

    EDIT: I haven't opened all the [spoilers] to read all the details on Sway, so I'm probably going to have to stick my foot in my mouth when it turns out one of them was hiding a comment that the last couple levels of the build are just "bonus material," and it stands on its own even without them ...
    Last edited by Draz74; 2010-08-10 at 02:21 PM.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by Draz74 View Post
    Yeah, about that -- there's a lot about Sway that's impressive, but isn't LA Buyoff an optional rule from UA, and therefore explicitly against the rules of Iron Chef? I would think that would be a massive penalty to Elegance.

    EDIT: I haven't opened all the [spoilers] to read all the details on Sway, so I'm probably going to have to stick my foot in my mouth when it turns out one of them was hiding a comment that the last couple levels of the build are just "bonus material," and it stands on its own even without them ...
    Yeah, I was expecting her to take a hit on excellence for that.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by dextercorvia View Post
    Yeah, I was expecting her to take a hit on excellence for that.
    Incidentally, so was Sway's entrant.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Optimystik View Post
    'Adding up numbers' is completely independent of roleplay. What you're saying makes as much sense as "peeling a banana is not a good way to drive."


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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Sway's creater did indeed note this:
    Quote Originally Posted by Sway's Level Adjustment and LA Buyoff.
    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.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by Keld Denar View Post
    Sway's creater did indeed note this:
    That note makes it sound like an ECL 10, Level 7 build (with +3 LA) receives XP like a Level 7 character, not like a Level 10 character. Which is not the case.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    No, I think he was making reference to the fact that after you buy off the LA, you'll gain XP faster.

    So a level 9 character with +3 LA (ECL12) earns xp as a 12th level character, but after buying off the LA, he'll be a 9th level character with a +2 LA (ECL11) and earn increased XP due to the lower ECL against higher level challenges.

    At least that's how I interpretted his language, which matches up with the rules in UA.

    Still, LA buyoff is not really something that has been traditionally looked upon favorably in IO, as I read back on old threads.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by Keld Denar View Post
    No, I think he was making reference to the fact that after you buy off the LA, you'll gain XP faster.

    So a level 9 character with +3 LA (ECL12) earns xp as a 12th level character, but after buying off the LA, he'll be a 9th level character with a +2 LA (ECL11) and earn increased XP due to the lower ECL against higher level challenges.

    At least that's how I interpretted his language, which matches up with the rules in UA.
    Ah, gotcha. Yes, LA Buyoff, if allowed, does work that way.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by Private-Prinny View Post
    Incidentally, so was Sway's entrant.
    LA Buyoff has been a staple in optimization for years, though with the typical judging pool's fluctuating tolerances, I can understand the assumption over the loss of points.
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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.
    I was going to do a Darfellan Barbarian/Sharklord/Dire Shark Primeval/Warshaper but ran out of time/couldn't get it to do more than being a beatstick with a massive bite attack. The Animal Growthed Dire Shark Wild Cohort was kinda nice, though...
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by dextercorvia View Post
    Yeah, I was expecting her to take a hit on excellence for that.
    Bah. Dumb typosthoughtos. I meant elegance of course.
    Last edited by dextercorvia; 2010-08-10 at 09:35 PM.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    I have 3 entries judged, and should be able to finish the others tomorrow evening. I should have scores up after some brief proofreading Thursday morning.

    This comes, however, with the light caveat that I'm currently in the jury duty pool. Realistically, however, I don't think they're even going to make me go in this round. This is good. That last one was a week long trial, and it was very boring.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Notice a quite bit of critique with 'dips'. What is the definition of a 'dip' and what usages qualifies it to be unfavorable?

    Quote Originally Posted by true_shinken View Post
    Looks like Sway is leading by quite a few points.
    3-4 points from 2nd and 3rd place using Prinny's 'add'em all up' rules. As the rest are still spread out from 6-12 points from 3rd, this is still easily anyone's game

    I was going to do a Darfellan Barbarian/Sharklord/Dire Shark Primeval/Warshaper but ran out of time/couldn't get it to do more than being a beatstick with a massive bite attack. The Animal Growthed Dire Shark Wild Cohort was kinda nice, though...
    That could have been interesting, but I don't like the flavor of a darfellan shark lord. Darfellans are like whale shifters, and whales and sharks are at extreme odds with each other. Darfellans even have racial bonuses against shark people.

    Now, what I wish was an option was 'weasel lord' for dire weasels and and wolverines. That'd have been awesome.
    Last edited by The Vorpal Tribble; 2010-08-11 at 10:53 AM.

  29. - Top - End - #149
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by The Vorpal Tribble View Post
    Notice a quite bit of critique with 'dips'. What is the definition of a 'dip' and what usages qualifies it to be unfavorable?
    I would like to know this as well. Is there a minimum number of levels before something is no longer considered a dip, but instead a lap or a nice leisurely swim? Does flavor/backstory play into it?

    I know it will probably vary from judge to judge, but I'd like to hear from each of them what their criteria for "dipping" are. While most of them warn against it in their overall guidelines, there seem to be no hard-and-fast "take at least X levels or else it's a dip" rules.

    At the very least, I've learned a lot more about what the judges (or at least these judges) are looking for, and I'm eagerly awaiting the next contest!
    Last edited by OMG PONIES; 2010-08-11 at 11:19 AM.

  30. - Top - End - #150
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge IX

    Quote Originally Posted by The Vorpal Tribble View Post
    Now, what I wish was an option was 'weasel lord' for dire weasels and and wolverines. That'd have been awesome.
    A PrC that granted a dire weasel's "attach" ability sounds extremely cool, worthwhile, and unusual.
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