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  1. - Top - End - #121
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Quote Originally Posted by true_shinken View Post
    I kind of like Ebon Saint as well.
    I like the idea of a Zerth Cenobite IC, though. They get their own power progression, after all.
    Oh, I could do some sick things with Zerth Cenobite... it's Flayerspawn Psychic that I look at and go 'wth do I do with this?'

  2. - Top - End - #122
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    I can't wait for IC XII. I just want this one to end. I didn't even feel like trying because of the ingredient.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Quote Originally Posted by The Vorpal Tribble View Post
    it's Flayerspawn Psychic that I look at and go 'wth do I do with this?'
    Easy, you grow tentacles.

    Quote Originally Posted by FishAreWet View Post
    I can't wait for IC XII. I just want this one to end. I didn't even feel like trying because of the ingredient.
    Fight that feeling! I had it at first too, but now I think this may be my favorite ingredient so far, since you have to try so hard to do anything different.
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  4. - Top - End - #124
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Oh, are we discussing the next secret ingredient? I'd love to see a Geomancer contest. Anyone can just grab an early-entry trick and try to minimize the effects of a couple missing caster levels... but to stand out, we'd have to see people actually taking the class for a reason. It's definitely a unique ability (so there's actually something to work with in the end), and seeing how people handle awkward and heavy costs of entry is fun all around.

    Failing that, I think that another low-casting (if not half-casting, at least less than 9/10 casting) class would be a good challenge. Part of the challenge is to actually make the secret ingredient necessary, and explaining why repeatedly breaking the good old Thou Shalt Not Lose Caster Levels commandment is actually a necessary part of the build makes for some fun times. Every crappy PrC has opportunity costs associated with it, but half-casting ones have both highly visible opportunity costs and usually a non-negligible cost of entry. If Milo hadn't been in the Mythic Exemplar challenge, I'd suggest Luckstealer, but that probably wouldn't be appropriate now. Maybe something weird from the Planar Handbook or Manual of the Planes.
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  5. - Top - End - #125
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Build Submitted, i fail for life on power :P

    next prc should be a casting type after this, otherwise it gets a little samey. oooh, the Scared Fist would be fun ;) or one of the prc's from Sandstorm

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Malbordeus View Post
    Build Submitted, i fail for life on power :P

    next prc should be a casting type after this, otherwise it gets a little samey. oooh, the Scared Fist would be fun ;) or one of the prc's from Sandstorm
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  7. - Top - End - #127
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    I thought about doing this challenge as well as the last one but my plan was so close to the other killer gnome that I gave up.

    On the discussion about future classes, If you do want something from Core how about the Horizon Walker? I don't recall seeing any builds with this in it so it could be an interesting idea.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Quote Originally Posted by cd4 View Post
    On the discussion about future classes, If you do want something from Core how about the Horizon Walker? I don't recall seeing any builds with this in it so it could be an interesting idea.
    Well, other than Saph's Horizon Tripper but Horizon Walker has quite a bit of wiggle room for doing things.

    Another core option we could do is the source of the last bonus spells PRC, Dragon Disciple.
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  9. - Top - End - #129
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Quote Originally Posted by true_shinken View Post
    I kind of like Ebon Saint as well.
    It's only 5 levels, which arguably makes it too easy to fit into an Iron Chef entry.
    You can call me Draz.
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  10. - Top - End - #130
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Draz74 View Post
    It's only 5 levels, which arguably makes it too easy to fit into an Iron Chef entry.
    *Takes off the chairman hat for a moment*

    While I understand the argument, I've never agreed with it personally. Taking all the levels in a class is fairly ancillary to using the class well.

    The viable pool of 5 level classes is fairly small though: most of them have very narrow focus and many don't have any particularly unique mechanical abilities. Uncanny Trickster and Maester would both be bad options, but I think that Cloaked Dancer (for example) might not be.

    *Puts back on the shiny hat*

    None of these comments should be taken to indicate a planned future SI choice on my part.
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  11. - Top - End - #131
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    I thought about doing this challenge as well as the last one but my plan
    fall short under the sheer number of feats needed for the 1st idea (moving whirwinding a spiked chain sneak attack and zone feint every round through a mount and WPO) and the overall weakness and impossibility to squeezes in everything for the second (Multiheadead Gnome with the "npc" aberrant limbs template going on rampage).

    Anyways, quite curious to see what's our Chef prepared this time. Not an easy PrC to make shine.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    I'll probably have to withdraw from this one as well. RL caught up with me faster than I anticipated. I was hoping to do it last weekend, but then I ended up going to NYC to visit family

    Plus, my planned build was a ToB entry, so I think BobVosh and some other judges would have been dissatisfied from the start. I'll map it out after the contestants have all revealed their builds. I still like the secret ingredient much more than the last few ingredients though. I really like both gnomes and fighter/rogue types
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Akal Saris is withdrawing? Good for my score, bad for my rabid fandom of Akal Saris.
    Last edited by OMG PONIES; 2010-09-08 at 05:15 PM.
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  14. - Top - End - #134
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Heh, thanks for the ego boost
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Akal Saris View Post
    I'll probably have to withdraw from this one as well. RL caught up with me faster than I anticipated. I was hoping to do it last weekend, but then I ended up going to NYC to visit family
    *holds wand gangsta style at Akal's head*

    Enter the @#%^'n contest man! Do it!

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    So uhm, newbie contestatnt and all... under 'skills' column do you want ALL the skill points/skills used? My build has quite a few of them.. might get messy :)

    Barring skills and equipment (which is mostly planned out and needs just minor tweaking) I'm pretty much ready to post.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Quote Originally Posted by The Vorpal Tribble View Post
    *holds wand gangsta style at Akal's head*

    Enter the @#%^'n contest man! Do it!
    Yeah! I may be a masochist for saying this, but I want to compete with the legendary Akal!
    You can call me Draz.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Draz74 View Post
    Yeah! I may be a masochist for saying this, but I want to compete with the legendary Akal!
    Yeah, I think I've only competed with you... once?

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Zaq View Post
    Oh, are we discussing the next secret ingredient? I'd love to see a Geomancer contest. Anyone can just grab an early-entry trick and try to minimize the effects of a couple missing caster levels... but to stand out, we'd have to see people actually taking the class for a reason. It's definitely a unique ability (so there's actually something to work with in the end), and seeing how people handle awkward and heavy costs of entry is fun all around.
    Geomancer is cool, but early entry tricks irk me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zaq View Post
    Failing that, I think that another low-casting (if not half-casting, at least less than 9/10 casting) class would be a good challenge. Part of the challenge is to actually make the secret ingredient necessary, and explaining why repeatedly breaking the good old Thou Shalt Not Lose Caster Levels commandment is actually a necessary part of the build makes for some fun times. Every crappy PrC has opportunity costs associated with it, but half-casting ones have both highly visible opportunity costs and usually a non-negligible cost of entry.
    Well, we had that twice recently, with Green Star Adept and Master of Masks. We never had a class with it's own casting, though.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zaq View Post
    If Milo hadn't been in the Mythic Exemplar challenge, I'd suggest Luckstealer, but that probably wouldn't be appropriate now. Maybe something weird from the Planar Handbook or Manual of the Planes.
    Like Ardent Dilettante?


    Quote Originally Posted by Draz74 View Post
    It's only 5 levels, which arguably makes it too easy to fit into an Iron Chef entry.
    Oh, well, there is that.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    My vote for the next SI is the Vigilante from Complete Adventurer.
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    If the line between genius and madness is so thin...

    Then why do so few in this day and age toe said line?

    Thanks to Bongos for the v-13 avvie!

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Quote Originally Posted by DaragosKitsune View Post
    My vote for the next SI is the Vigilante from Complete Adventurer.
    I briefly considered Vigilante during my run as chairman before I realized 2 things.

    1. Smite the Guilty just has horrible mechanics.
    2. Someone would argue for a RAW usage of that Spells per Day table.
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Quote Originally Posted by DaragosKitsune View Post
    My vote for the next SI is the Vigilante from Complete Adventurer.
    I'm with you! Some love for the Vigilante!

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Private-Prinny View Post
    I briefly considered Vigilante during my run as chairman before I realized 2 things.

    1. Smite the Guilty just has horrible mechanics.
    2. Someone would argue for a RAW usage of that Spells per Day table.
    1. Yes, Smite the Guilty is iffy. That's part of the fun.
    2. Anyone who exploits that kind of RAW should automatically lose.
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    If the line between genius and madness is so thin...

    Then why do so few in this day and age toe said line?

    Thanks to Bongos for the v-13 avvie!

    I think the lesson that we can take away from this is that tentacles solve everything, and if you have a problem, then you just need more tentacles. - seadragonknight of the BG boards.

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Quote Originally Posted by Zaq View Post
    Maybe something weird from the Planar Handbook or Manual of the Planes.
    If we're putting in suggestions/requests, I'd love to see Elemental Warrior - just to see if anyone can make something useful of it!
    Quote Originally Posted by DaragosKitsune View Post
    2. Anyone who exploits that kind of RAW should automatically lose.
    Unless you combine it with a 1d43 scorpion whip attack!

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    Quote Originally Posted by The Vorpal Tribble View Post
    Yeah, I think I've only competed with you... once?
    I've only entered for Master of Masks, Pyrokineticist, and Animal Lord. And now Blade Bravo. I haven't kept track carefully, but I think I've only competed against you once, and against Akal once.
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  26. - Top - End - #146
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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    There is more of a challenge in optimizing a PrC that is generally regarded as poor. However, coming up with an original concept for a popular PrC is just as difficult.

    There are quite a few Core PrC's that have not been touched. Horizon Walker was mentioned. Assassin, Blackguard, Duelist, Dwarven Defender and Arcane Archer could make for a fun challenge. Some of them are often dipped, others rarely touched in many optimization guides and handbooks. (AA, DD and Duelist).

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    “I like villains because there's something so attractive about a committed person -- they have a plan, an ideology, no matter how twisted. They're motivated.”
    -Russell Crowe

    Quote Originally Posted by Moudo
    The giants were hungry, and the smell of roasted meat was intoxicating. Venison, mutton, boar, rabbit... the specifics of the meat were unimportant. Only the iron-sweet salty tang in their flared nostrils, of animal flesh charring on a spit, mattered to them as they approached the imposing black edifice at the outskirts of their usual stomping grounds. They found the door locked, but few ordinary locked doors will stop giants from entering. This door proved no exception, and exploded inward in a storm of splinters under their pounding fists.

    Inside, they found a single occupant. He was a gnome, clad in a black breastplate and black pantaloons, a jewel-encrusted black mask covering his eyes, nose and cheeks as he calmly looked up from his steaming plate of meat and vegetables. He smiled at the giants, with no trace of friendship on his upturned lips.

    “Welcome to the Black Tower. I am Moudo, of the Ebon Cabal. You are trespassing. You will amend this state of affairs.”

    “Puny gnome not tell Gar, Gan and Gal what to do!” The giant closest to Moudo thumped his chest in emphasis as he spoke. “We squash puny gnome, take food!”

    In reply, Moudo tipped the table toward the door and ducked behind it, sending the food skidding across the stone floor. The giants fanned out and rushed the table, but found nobody behind it.

    “Where puny gnome go? Want to turn you into gnome-kabob now! Make Gal angry!” The red rage on Gal’s face quickly drained away as the words hung in the air, a small rapier having pierced through his larynx.

    Seemingly from nowhere, Moudo was standing there, holding the rapier, with his mask pushed up so his face was visible. Suddenly, his appearance shifted, as if afflicted by some sort of palsy. His jaw slacked and jutted, posture stooped, and joints appeared to nearly dislocate. He looked squarely at Gar, the first giant to speak, as he withdrew the rapier from Gal’s throat.

    “I told you that you were trespassing. Now, I am angry. Now, two of you will die. Do you wish to be the second? Or do you think I should up the number to three?”

    Gar considered himself brave, but felt a chill down his spine at the quiet menace in Moudo’s voice, combined with his oddly horrific appearance. Moudo darted at him suddenly, and Gar, despite himself, flinched. The flinch was all the advantage Moudo needed. He reached out, further than Gar and Gan expected he could, and his bloodied rapier pierced the flesh under Gar’s armpit and sank into the giant’s lung. Gar spat blood and fell heavily to the floor, dead.

    Moudo sprang forward immediately, flying past Gan’s ear before he could properly respond. Gan struck out ineffectually, and the rapier sliced into his arm in payment. Dark blood spouted from a long wound along his artery. He attempted another feeble attack at the gnarled-up gnome, who again struck true, stabbing the rapier into Gan’s eye. Gan gurgled and fell dead beside his brethren.

    “You can come out now. They’re dead. Bring me some more mutton.”

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    Player’s Handbook, DMG (items), Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting (Zhentarim flavor), Champions of Valor Web Enhancement (Zhentarim Soldier Substitution levels), SRD (Thug variant, Sneak Attack Fighter variant), Lords of Madness (Aberration Blood, Starspawn), Races of Stone (Blade Bravo), Shattered Gates of Slaughtergarde (Twisted Lord Prestige Class)


    Appetizer: 1st level
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    Though CHA is his lowest stat, Moudo invests in the social skills that are granted to a Thug, to gain utility outside of combat. With Combat Expertise and two good saves, Moudo is reasonably hard to hit, and his Fighter HD don’t hurt him. Sneak Attack means any weapon he wields tactically in melee is going to hurt, and the Fighter BAB helps offset the low STR at this level. The party Rogue will love having Moudo as a flanking buddy. Like many 1st level Fighters, he’s well served by a scimitar and some javelins.


    Salad & Breadsticks: 6th level
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    Weapon Finesse and Weapon Focus(Rapier) make it clear that the scimitar isn’t Moudo’s primary weapon anymore. Continued emphasis on the CHA-related skills helps highlight his out-of-combat role, while improving his combat utility by allowing him to demoralize opponents; the Zhentarim Soldier substitution levels make him excel at this. Demoralized opponents are - obviously - easier for everyone in the party to deal with. His other skills are spent improving ways to gain Sneak Attack, which sits at a nice +3d6. SA +3d6 with full BAB is a sweet amount of damage boost, without total reliance on the SA for usefulness in combat, and with better HD than the party Rogue, who still dearly covets his company in the party. Knowledge (the planes) helps justify later feat choices for any DM that prefers the ‘what’s your reason for doing that?’ line of reasoning. By this point, a +1 rapier, +1 mithral breastplate, and +1 mithral buckler are reasonably obtainable possessions. He’s also grabbed a few potions of owl’s wisdom to shore up his weak Will save as needed.


    Appetizers: 11th level
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    Twisted Form is really useful to Moudo’s preferred fighting style. Bonuses to feint in combat (+21 to the check at this level without magic), Intimidate, and Escape Artist blend well with a mobile fighter that specializes in getting under his opponent’s skin and guard at the same time. He’s ditched the buckler by this point for the free +1 dagger (that can cast scorching ray and burning hands 1/day each!) he gains for being able to enter Twisted Lord, with TWF gained a a bonus feat for Blade Bravo. Add the Deadly Precision enhancement to the +1 Rapier and the SA bonus is at +6d6 with the main hand, and easy to set up in a variety of ways. Sure, some things aren’t affected by SA, but Moudo’s still doing respectable damage, with more than adequate defenses - plus the aforementioned dagger’s magic. With Goad and Darkstalker - and a Ring of the Darkhidden - he can be the center of attention, or well-hidden, as best fits the situation. He can even alternate their uses to draw fire away from other party members. His skill set allows him to function well underground or in open spaces, especially against larger opponents. He climbs and jumps well enough that he can get to most enemies, and carries a few potions of flying for those times when he needs them.


    Main Course: 16th level
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    Moudo embraces the inner monster he touched upon as a Twisted Lord with aberration feats. His ring of evasion is paired with a ring of reduce person, Blade Bravo’s Size Advantage, +7d6 of SA, and ITWF to make him even more devastating in combat. Opponents who aren’t actively spotting him can’t see him, due to gaining Twisted Lord’s Peripheral Invisibility, and those that are paying attention to him are almost invariably flat-footed thanks to a Bluff check over 30 for purposes of feinting in combat. Inhuman Reach helps against larger opponents and gives him better battlefield control. Slimy Skin enables Inhuman Reach, and provides a useful countermeasure against large opponents trying to grapple Moudo. Further weapon enhancement with the Collision property increase his DPR, even against those opponents who aren’t affected by SA or demoralizing tactics. Those few opponents remain a relative weakness, but he can still contribute against them with a solid attack routine, mobility, and his items.


    Dessert: 20th level
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    Moudo has added a Ring of Reduce Person, giving all of his Blade Bravo abilities more bite. Because he relies on 7d6 SA and weapon enhancements for the majority of his damage - as most do at this level - a tiny base weapon damage is not a hindrance. Improved TWF and Greater TWF add on to the attack routine very well, Blade Bravo’s abilities combine with Inhuman Reach and Starspawn to give remarkable battlefield control and mobility, and his abilities to demoralize opponents keep him from being a one-trick pony. Moudo relies on a Gravestrike wand he bought and gave the party’s casters to maximize effectiveness against undead, but his size differential keeps him useful against them even when SA isn’t available to make him his deadliest.


    Raise DEX with level ups. Uses the following variants: Thug Fighter, Sneak Attack Fighter, Zhentarim Soldier substitution levels 3 & 5 (Champions of Valor Web Enhancement)
    Moudo, the Twisted GnomeNE Gnome STR 10 DEX 16 CON 14 INT 16 WIS 12 CHA 8
    {table=head]Level|Class|Base Attack<br>Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Skills|Feats|Class Features

    1st|Thug 1|
    +1
    |
    +4
    |
    +3
    |
    +1
    |Bluff 4, Gather Information 4, Intimidate 4, Jump 4, Knowledge (the planes) 2, Sleight of Hand 4, Tumble 2|Combat Expertise|Sneak Attack +1d6

    2nd|Thug 2|
    +2
    |
    +5
    |
    +3
    |
    +1
    |Bluff 5, Gather Information 5, Intimidate 5, Jump 5, Knowledge (the planes) 2.5, Sleight of Hand 5, Swim 1|-|-

    3rd|Thug 3|
    +3
    |
    +5
    |
    +4
    |
    +2
    |Bluff 6, Gather Information 6, Intimidate 6, Jump 6, Knowledge (the planes) 3, Sleight of Hand 6, Tumble 2.5|Skill Focus (Intimidate); Weapon Finesse|Sneak Attack +2d6; Bonus Feat

    4th|Thug 4|
    +4
    |
    +6
    |
    +4
    |
    +2
    |Bluff 7, Gather Information 7, Intimidate 7, Jump 7, Ride 1, Sleight of Hand 7, Tumble 3|-|-

    5th|Thug 5|
    +5
    |
    +6
    |
    +4
    |
    +2
    |Bluff 8, Gather Information 8, Intimidate 8, Jump 8, Knowledge (the planes) 3.5, Sleight of Hand 8, Tumble 3.5|-|Extended Intimidation: Successful Intimidate check lasts 24 hours; +4 on Intimidate checks against those who previously failed the save.

    6th|Thug 6|
    +6/+1
    |
    +7
    |
    +5
    |
    +3
    |Bluff 9, Gather Information 9, Intimidate 9, Jump 9, Knowledge (the planes) 4, Sleight of Hand 9, Tumble 4|Weapon Focus (Rapier)|Sneak Attack +3d6

    7th|Blade Bravo 1|
    +7/+2
    |
    +7
    |
    +7
    |
    +3
    |Bluff 10, Climb 1, Escape Artist 1, Intimidate 10, Jump 10, Sense Motive 1, Tumble 5|Goad|Goad; Flourish

    8th|Blade Bravo 2|
    +8/+3
    |
    +7
    |
    +9
    |
    +3
    |Bluff 11, Climb 2, Escape Artist 2, Intimidate 11, Jump 11, Sense Motive 2, Tumble 6|-|Mobile Fighting

    9th|Blade Bravo 3|
    +9/+4
    |
    +8
    |
    +9
    |
    +4
    |Bluff 12, Climb 3, Escape Artist 3, Intimidate 12, Jump 12, Sense Motive 3, Tumble 7|TWF; Darkstalker|Bonus Feat

    10th|Blade Bravo 4|
    +10/+5
    |
    +8
    |
    +10
    |
    +4
    |Bluff 13, Climb 4, Escape Artist 4, Intimidate 13, Jump 13, Sense Motive 4, Tumble 8|-|Melee Sneak Attack +1d6

    11th|Twisted Lord 1|
    +10/+5
    |
    +8
    |
    +12
    |
    +4
    |Bluff 14, Climb 5, Escape Artist 5, Gather Information 10, Hide 1, Intimidate 14, Jump 14, Sense Motive 5, Sleight of Hand 10, Tumble 9|-|Twisted Form (Note 1)

    12th|Twisted Lord 2|
    +11/+6/+1
    |
    +8
    |
    +13
    |
    +4
    |Bluff 15, Climb 6, Escape Artist 6, Gather Information 11, Hide 2, Intimidate 15, Jump 15, Sense Motive 6, Sleight of Hand 11, Tumble 10|Aberration Blood (Slimy Skin)|Sneak Attack +1d6

    13th|Twisted Lord 3|
    +12/+7/+2
    |
    +9
    |
    +13
    |
    +5
    |Bluff 16, Climb 7, Escape Artist 7, Gather Information 12, Hide 3, Intimidate 16, Jump 16, Sense Motive 7, Sleight of Hand 12, Tumble 11|Improved Feint|Bonus Feat

    14th|Twisted Lord 4|
    +13/+8/+3
    |
    +9
    |
    +14
    |
    +5
    |Bluff 17, Climb 8, Escape Artist 8, Gather Information 13, Hide 4, Intimidate 17, Jump 17, Sense Motive 8, Sleight of Hand 13, Tumble 12|-|Peripheral Invisibility (Note 2)

    15th|Blade Bravo 5|
    +14/+9/+4
    |
    +9
    |
    +14
    |
    +5
    |Bluff 18, Climb 9, Escape Artist 9, Intimidate 18, Jump 18, Sense Motive 9, Tumble 13|Inhuman Reach|Size Advantage

    16th|Blade Bravo 6|
    +15/+10/+5
    |
    +10
    |
    +16
    |
    +6
    |Bluff 19, Climb 10, Escape Artist 10, Intimidate 19, Jump 19, Sense Motive 10, Tumble 14|ITWF|Bonus Feat

    17th|Blade Bravo 7|
    +16/+11/+6/+1
    |
    +10
    |
    +16
    |
    +6
    |Bluff 20, Climb 11, Escape Artist 11, Intimidate 20, Jump 20, Sense Motive 11, Tumble 15|-|Small But Deadly

    18th|Blade Bravo 8|
    +17/+12/+7/+2
    |
    +10
    |
    +17
    |
    +6
    |Bluff 21, Climb 12, Escape Artist 12, Intimidate 21, Jump 21, Sense Motive 12, Tumble 16|Starspawn| Melee Sneak Attack +2d6

    19th|Blade Bravo 9|
    +18/+13/+8/+3
    |
    +11
    |
    +17
    |
    +7
    |Bluff 22, Climb 13, Escape Artist 13, Intimidate 22, Jump 22, Sense Motive 13, Tumble 17|GTWF|Bonus Feat

    20th|Blade Bravo 10|
    +19/+14/+9/+4
    |
    +11
    |
    +18
    |
    +8
    |Bluff 23, Climb 14, Escape Artist 14, Intimidate 23, Jump 23, Sense Motive 14, Tumble 18|-|Lethal Riposte[/table]

    Twisted Lord is from a very obscure official WotC source: The Shattered Gates of Slaughtergarde. Because of its obscurity, I’m transcribing relevant rules text - and only rules text - below, for the benefit of any judge without access.
    {Chairman's note: I've cut down the following portion of the submission, since Shattered Gates isn't OGC. I believe I've summarized everything the contestant included of note, but should the contestant have issues or the judges have any rules questions regarding the class, please send me a PM}

    Becoming a Twisted Lord:
    Spoiler
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    Entry Summary:
    • Bluff 9 ranks
    • Intimidate 5 ranks.
    • Affiliation score of 9 or higher within the Ebon Cabal (need not be maintained for advancement)
    • Ritualistically consume twistroot.



    Note 1: Twisted Form
    Spoiler
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    Twisted Form (Ex): While in your twisted form:
    +4 bonus on Bluff checks to feint in combat
    +4 bonus on Intimidate checks to demoralize an opponent
    +4 bonus on Escape Artist checks.
    -4 penalty on Diplomacy checks and other attempts to influence an NPC's attitude.
    Unlimited Duration
    Ex effect


    Note 2: Peripheral Invisibility
    Spoiler
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    As as swift action, if no one successfully made a spot check against you or attacked you in the prior round, you may become invisible. Lasts for 1 round. Minimum 1 minute between uses.
    This effect is Su
    Last edited by Ozymandias9; 2010-09-09 at 02:06 PM.
    78% of DM's started their first campaign in a tavern. [...]Where did you start yours?
    A street riot in a major city that was getting violent.
    Spoiler
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  28. - Top - End - #148
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    GnomeWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Jan 2009
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    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    And Gnomish girls make me sing and shout
    That Blingdenstone's always on my my my my my my my my my mind

    Quote Originally Posted by Sizok
    Analysis of Secret Ingredient
    Spoiler
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    As I see it, the ideal Blade Bravo should be:
    • A light-armored, non-Strength-focused melee combatant. The flavor, the prerequisites, and a number of class features all make this abundantly clear.
    • Charismatic. The Blade Bravo's "social combat" class features are difficult to make really powerful, but at least as a start to doing so, they should be hard to resist, which means a high Charisma. In addition, to really fit the flavor of the class, I've chosen not only to make Charisma decently high, but to make it the build's primary ability and base as many things as possible off of Charisma.
    • Small! A couple of class features only work against larger foes, and Size Advantage works better the bigger the size difference. So the smaller, the better.
    • Mobile. Mobile Fighting encourages moving each round, and some of the bonus feats support this as well. The Blade Bravo should therefore be able to move about without provoking attacks of opportunity, and preferably have some means to move and still make a full attack.
    • Critical hit-focused. Small but Deadly is a class feature that specifically rewards threatening a critical hit. Crit fishing is also a good way to make melee damage output significant even without making a full attack.
    • Sneak Attack-focused. The class grants Sneak Attack; might as well improve sneak attacking capabilities, if possible. Again, this is a good way to make damage output matter even without making a full attack.
    • Social combat focused. Feinting is a really weak tactic most of the time (and Blade Bravo isn't even very compatible with Invisible Blade, due to disparate feat requirements), but if there are ways to make feinting at least less useless, they are good additions to a Blade Bravo build at least flavor-wise. Any other social combat options also seem appropriate.
    • As a minor side note, I find it interesting that Concentration is a Blade Bravo class skill. I'd like to make good use of that.


    With that, I present ...

    Sizok, Sworn of Clan Dinglegrinn
    NG Dromite Wilder 5 / Stoneblessed 3 / Swashbuckler 1 / Blade Bravo 10
    Variants: Educated Wilder; Mantled Wilder (freedom)

    Backstory
    Spoiler
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    "So tell me, old friend," Zirthen said, setting down his mug of the finest gnomish rum -- made by his own aunt Nirah -- "what brings you all this way to visit? How are things in your far-off tunnels?"

    Vuru stared at Zirthen with his huge, unblinking, multifaceted eyes, while his antennae did a little dance that indicated a nervous gesture, like the blink of another race. "Things aren't good, friend. I'm really not sure what to do." It stirred its rockberry cocktail. "We're under constant pressure from the mindflayers, the umberhulks they send to assault our borders. Year after year. I really thought we could handle anything, all those years ago, after you and the others helped me drive out the drow. And I even think my hive could handle the mindflayers themselves, nasty as they are. We are a strong-minded race. But physical power, brave warriors who can hold a front line and guard our psionicists ... that's what we need against these umberhulks. And physical resilience, you understand, is not our best area."

    Zirthen gave one of his old mischevious smirks, the way only an illusionist could. His elderly eyebrows made the effect stronger than ever. "Garl's gem glitters in the blackest tunnel, Vuru."

    "Riddles, Zirthen? At a time like this, really?"

    "Sit back and relax from your worries for a few moments, Vuru. It will do you good. Besides, it would be a crime not to enjoy the evening show, when you drink in as fine an establishment as the Thespian Rumspring."

    The evening show began. Melodramatic chivalry and acrobatic stunts were placed on display. And when it ended, Vuru's jaw hung open -- which was a very interesting effect, given its oral anatomical differences from the gnomes.

    "That was ... incredible," Vuru said, its antennae standing fully on end. "I thought you gnomes were all about magic and such arcane trickery ... wait. That swordsman was not, himself, an illusion?"

    "No," chuckled Zirthen, "I'm afraid our talents are a little more diverse than you suspected, old friend."

    "But such an interesting martial style ... from such a small being! Why ..." it paused. "I don't believe that warrior was any larger than a member of my hive. Yet its fighting style would excel against the umberhulks! Such skill with that narrow little sword! Would I be able to persuade him to come join our militia?"

    Zirthen shook his head. "He is retired ... only good for show at this point. But ... you have given me an idea. I believe a cultural exchange program is in order! Have you any young dromite recruits, perhaps too frail to be the warrior you need against the umberhulks, yet brave and willing? It would need to be quick of wit and tongue and body, perhaps even a bit foolhardy."

    Vuru's eyes seemed, somehow, to grow even wider, glistening with many colors. "You know, Zirthen, I think I have just the right hive-niece in mind ... A freshly-hatched crossbow archer whom I've already been teaching Gnomish ..."

    Starting Ability Scores:
    STR 10, DEX 14, CON 14, INT 14, WIS 6, CHA 18
    Final Ability Scores:
    STR 10, DEX 18, CON 22, INT 14, WIS 6, CHA 34

    {table=head]ECL|Class|Base Attack<br>Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Skills|Feats|Class Features

    1st|Dromite Level Adjustment|
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |n/a|Blind-Fight|Resist electricity 5; Energy Ray 1/day; scent

    2nd|Wilder 1 (XPH)|
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +2
    |Bluff 4, Concentration 4, Craft (stonework) 4, Appraise 2, Spot 4, Tumble 4|Linked Power (CPsi)|Wild Surge +1, Psychic Enervation

    3rd|Wilder 2|
    +1
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +3
    |Intimidate 1, Concentration 1, Craft (stonework) 1, Tumble 1, Listen 2| |Freedom mantle power (+10 speed)

    4th|Stoneblessed 1 (RoS)|
    +1
    |
    +2
    |
    +0
    |
    +3
    |Bluff 2, Listen 4|Combat Expertise|Stonebond (gnome)

    5th|Stoneblessed 2|
    +2
    |
    +3
    |
    +0
    |
    +3
    |Bluff 1, Listen 1, Perform (dance) 4| |Racial battle technique

    6th|Stoneblessed 3|
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    |Bluff 1, Listen 1, Use Magic Device 1; timely misdirection trick| |Stoneborn (CON +2)

    7th|Swashbuckler 1 (CWar)|
    +4
    |
    +5
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    |Diplomacy 5, Tumble 1|Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (rapier)|

    8th|Wilder 3|
    +5
    |
    +6
    |
    +2
    |
    +4
    |Spot 2, Concentration 1, Bluff 1, Tumble 1, Intimidate 1| |Wild Surge +2

    9th|Blade Bravo 1|
    +6/+1
    |
    +6
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |Bluff 2, Perform (dance) 1, Tumble 3|Goad (RoS)|Flourish

    10th|Blade Bravo 2|
    +7/+2
    |
    +6
    |
    +5
    |
    +4
    |Bluff 1, Concentration 2, Intimidate 3|Underfoot Combat (RotW)|Mobile Fighting

    11th|Blade Bravo 3|
    +8/+3
    |
    +7
    |
    +5
    |
    +5
    |Bluff 1, Concentration 2, Intimidate 3|Improved Feint|

    12th|Blade Bravo 4|
    +9/+4
    |
    +7
    |
    +6
    |
    +5
    |Bluff 1, Concentration 2, Intimidate 3| |Melee sneak attack +1d6

    13th|Wilder 4|
    +10/+5
    |
    +7
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |Bluff 1, Concentration 2, Intimidate 3|Craven (CoR)|Surging Euphoria +1

    14th|Blade Bravo 5|
    +11/+6/+1
    |
    +7
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |Bluff 1, Concentration 2, Intimidate 1; social recovery trick| |Size Advantage

    15th|Wilder 5|
    +11/+6/+1
    |
    +7
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |Bluff 1, Concentration 1, Intimidate 2; group fake-out trick|Expanded Knowledge (XPH)|

    16th|Blade Bravo 6|
    +12/+7/+2
    |
    +8
    |
    +7
    |
    +7
    |Bluff 1, Concentration 1, Intimidate 1, Balance 3|Improved Critical (rapier), Imperious Command|

    17th|Blade Bravo 7|
    +13/+8/+3
    |
    +8
    |
    +7
    |
    +7
    |Bluff 1, Concentration 1, Intimidate 1, Balance 2, Perform (dance) 1| |Small but Deadly

    18th|Blade Bravo 8|
    +14/+9/+4
    |
    +8
    |
    +8
    |
    +7
    |Bluff 1, Concentration 1, Intimidate 1, Perform (dance) 1; never outnumbered trick| |Melee sneak attack +2d6

    19th|Blade Bravo 9|
    +15/+10/+5
    |
    +9
    |
    +8
    |
    +8
    |Bluff 1, Concentration 1, Intimidate 1, Perform (dance) 1; twisted charge trick|Combat Reflexes, Confound the Big Folk (RotW)|

    20th|Blade Bravo 10|
    +16/+11/+6/+1
    |
    +9
    |
    +9
    |
    +8
    |Bluff 1, Concentration 1, Tumble 2; acrobatic backstab trick| |Lethal Riposte[/table]


    Powers Known
    Spoiler
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    ECL 2: Dimension Hop (CPsi)
    ECL 3: Vigor
    ECL 13: Hustle
    ECL 15: Compression

    Final PP/day: 56 (1 racial + 25 class-based +30 Charisma-based).

    If this isn't enough PP for Sizok to manifest her powers constantly in her particular campaign, +1 Manifester Arrows can always be used to solve the problem.

    Equipment
    Spoiler
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    Slippers of Battledancing! (DMG2) These are crucial to the build, as they allow melee attack and damage to be based off of Charisma whenever Sizok moves in combat. Their other perks (intiative bonus, speed bonus, Tumble bonus) are nice too. These should be acquired by Level 14 or so, at the very latest.

    +1 Rapier: Sudden Stunning (DMG2), Bloodletting (MIC), Enervating (MIC), Slowing Burst (MIC), Collision (XPH). With this kind of weapon, critical hits should be relatively common and extremely painful. (Note that Bloodletting damage points get multiplied on a crit.) Before ECL 16 (when Sizok gains the Improved Critical feat), this should instead be a +1 Keen Bloodletting Sudden Stunning Rapier. If Sudden Stunning is considered broken in your campaign (very possible), use Stunning Surge (MIC) instead. If you have the money, add Suppression (XPH) to this weapon; Dispel Psionics isn't an awesome effect when tied to a Manifester Level of 5, but hey, it's still a free dispel attempt every time you hit a foe.

    +5 Mithral Heavy Shield: Ironically, considering Sizok's general "lightweight" style, nothing she does is hindered by use of a shield. Might as well use one ... and make it a good one, since AC is quite important to this character. Many shield enhancements are nice (e.g. Fearsome (MIC), Ghost Ward (MIC)), but none are crucial.

    +5 Mithralmist Shirt (MIC): See notes on shield. Mithralmist is a good cheap method of getting concealment, in case AC and Hit Points aren't ever enough defenses for Sizok. Fearsome (DotU) is certainly a good investment at high levels, after Sizok picks up Imperious Command.

    Belt of Battle (MIC): good for almost every character, but Sizok gains more mileage than most out of getting 3/day extra move actions.

    Novice Iron Heart Vest (ToB): Mostly because Disarming Strike is always a flavorful sort of maneuver to have access to on a swashbuckling character. Can also be used to gain Wall of Blades instead.

    Novice Ring of the Diamond Mind (ToB): Moment of Perfect Mind 1/encounter. 'Nuff said. At high levels, this may become somewhat obsolete as Sizok is recommended to pick up a Third Eye Conceal (XPH/MIC) or Ring of Mental Fortitude (DMG2) for mental protection (given her low Wisdom score).

    (another) Novice Ring of the Diamond Mind (ToB): Insightful Strike. Once per encounter, when Sizok can't make a full attack, she has one more option to give a big boost to her melee damage.

    Circlet of Persuasion: Why not? Boosts Bluff, Diplomacy, Intimidate, Perform, and Use Magic Device at the same time.

    Ring of Anticipation (DotU): Keep Sizok's Spot and Listen a little bit competitive, as well as rolling twice on initiative. This isn't strictly necessary, but really it's something many characters should probably carry.

    Standard stuff: save boosts, extradimensional storage space, ability boosters (Dex +4, Con +6, Cha +6, and Tome of Leadership and Influence +5) ... you get the idea. Plus stuff that pretty much any character finds useful, e.g. Scout's Headband (MIC), Rod of Viscid Globs (MIC) ...

    Psicrown of the Evader (XPH): a good indulgence at very high levels, when Wealth by Level becomes extensive.

    +1 Arrows, Manifester (XPH): the cheesy but totally legal way to purchase extra Power Points cheap! 72 gp per Power Point! Use only if necessary.

    Wands of Gravestrike, Golemstrike (CAdv): to make Craven damage apply against crit-immune things. Obviously, put them in Wand Chambers (Dungeonscape) in her rapier and shield.

    Combos/Notes
    Spoiler
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    A dromite wilder gish. That's definitely something I've never seen before!

    First, I'd like to point out that Sizok uses every aspect of the Dromite race:
    Spoiler
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    • Charisma bonus is extremely valuable, as this build manages to use Charisma for attack rolls, damage rolls, bonus Power Points, Bluff checks (including feinting, or replacing failed Diplomacy checks using a skill trick), other social skills, Goad save DCs, and save DCs for abilities that may be picked up via Psychic Reformation'd powers (see Variations section) or items (e.g. Fearsome armor/shield, Sudden Stunning weapon), and uses/day of Sudden Stunning.
    • Monstrous Humanoid type is important (as opposed to e.g. Aberration) because of Stoneblessed prerequisites.
    • Small Size is important for Underfoot Combat and Confound the Big Folk, as well as several Blade Bravo class features.
    • 20 foot land speed ... ok, I guess I don't get anything good out of that. But at least the build has a couple "accidental" speed boosts to make up for this weakness (the Freedom Mantle power at ECL 3, and the Slippers of Battledancing side effect).
    • +3 Natural Armor is nice, because this build actually focuses enough on AC to make it relevant all the way into high levels.
    • Resist Electricity 5 and Energy Ray 1/day aren't crucial to the build, but they're certainly useful. It's always good for a melee character to have a backup ranged option!
    • Naturally psionic ... obviously put to good use.
    • Scent and the Spot bonus make the character a valuable scout, especially at low levels. In spite of having a Wisdom penalty. (Stoneblessed picks up a racial Listen bonus, which is nicely symmetric and again helps overcome low Wisdom.) Blind-Fight is also a nice, if minor, perk for any melee character.
    • Even the Dromite bonus language list is important, thanks to Stoneblessed prerequisites. Note that Sizok starts off with a high enough Intelligence to know Gnomish and Terran.
    • Favored Class: Wilder is also put to good use, so that a Swashbuckler/Wilder doesn't get any XP penalties. (Incidentally, the Swashbuckler dip is necessary not just to pick up a free feat, but to be proficient in rapiers in order to take weapon focus. Diplomacy as a class skill is also a nice perk.)

    The confession: this is not a powerful combat build at low levels. I wish I could claim otherwise, but I can't. It's a mediocre archer in combat, nothing more, until ECL 7 (or until the DM takes pity and hands out overpowered equipment early). (See the Variations section for a minor improvement on this issue.)

    Even at these low levels, however, I think Sizok can manage to be a useful party member. Teleportation (i.e. Dimension Hop) is incredibly valuable at very low levels, and she has the skills and abilities necessary to be a good scout and a good party face.

    The build's real intent, however, is to be a "tank" who draws the attention of big, tough melee monsters in order to protect the rest of the party. This role really kicks in at ECL 9, when Goad shows up. With Blade Bravo and high Charisma, Goad should be relatively likely to work; and with a great AC and plenty of Hit Points (via high Constitution and the Vigor power), Sizok should be a pretty resilient tank.

    Of course a good tank also needs a decent offense, especially since many monsters are immune to Goad (or have ranged options).

    Action Economy and Melee Damage-Dealing
    Spoiler
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    Sizok has a lot of ways to move and still make a full attack (triggering Mobile Fighting, and sometimes Slippers of Battledancing, in the process). Dimension Hop, Hustle, and at later levels Belt of Battle and Psicrown of the Evader.

    However, Sizok also has a lot of ways to use up move actions besides moving: Goad, Feinting (with Improved Feint), and Demoralization (with Fearsome (DotU) armor). Weak options, sometimes, but terribly flavorful and fun to use. And she will want to move every turn, even when her position is already good, in order to activate Slippers of Battledancing. So she won't always get to make a full attack. So she needs to do as much damage as possible with a single attack per turn.

    Crit-fishing is the main tactic here. With Improved Critical as a bonus feat, Sizok should threaten a critical on nearly every third hit. With good attack bonuses and Small but Deadly, those critical threats should generally be confirmed. With the right weapon (see Equipment section), a critical hit should do a few nasty things, such as a negative level and possibly a slow effect, in addition to damage. And static damage bonuses, such as Craven (!), will multiply on critical hits.

    (Hooray for putting the minor Sneak Attack abilities of Blade Bravo to good use! And Sizok should never lack for ways to make sneak attacking possible. Winning initiative, flanking with an ally, using Sapphire Nightmare Blade (learned via item), feinting, using Confound the Big Folk, or using the Acrobatic Backstab trick.)

    If Sizok's damage isn't going to be enough, use your magic weapon to Stun a target instead.

    Note that Linked Power is another way to save on the action economy. Use it to manifest Vigor or Compression at the start of a battle if you didn't know the battle was coming in time to pre-buff.

    Size Tricks and Armor Class Estimate
    Spoiler
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    Note that, with Wild Surge, Sizok has a high enough manifester level to augment Compression and shrink herself to Diminutive size. (This will let her use Confound the Big Folk with even Small monsters!)

    Against a typical Large opponent, Sizok at high levels can have an AC of at least 63:
    10 (base) +3 (size) +3 (natural) +6 (dexterity) +1 (mobile fighting) +9 (armor) +7 (shield) +5 (deflection item) +5 (natural enhancement item) +1 (insight item) +8 (size advantage) +5 (Combat Expertise).

    This can be improved slightly by e.g. swapping out Mithralmist Shirt for Celestial Armor at high levels. Also, there is an additional +4 AC vs. creatures of the Giant type, thanks to the Racial Battle Technique of Stoneblessed.

    That's respectable!

    Variations
    Spoiler
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    If LA Buyoff is allowed, replace two levels of Blade Bravo with three levels of Uncanny Trickster (CScn). This gives the character a whole lot of skill points, accelerates skill tricks a bit, and lets you use three skill tricks twice as often. The latter can be chosen either for flavor (feint-related tricks) or power (Never Outnumbered, Social Recovery).

    If flaws are allowed, there are plenty more feats this build would like to have (although some, admittedly, are still tricky to squeeze in, due to the need to take bonus feats from flaws at Level 1). For example, you could strengthen the build's focus on "social combat" and versatile use of Bluff with Combat Panache (PHB2). Or you could strengthen her psionic abilities with e.g. Practiced Manifester, Metapower (linked Hustle), or Hidden Talent (which would allow you to get Compression without taking a fifth Wilder level). Or you could further emphasize the size-based fighting angle, with Dodge and Titan Fighting (RoS).

    One of Sizok's Power choices is pretty flexible: the one she picks up at ECL 3. Feel free to swap this power around, throughout the course of the campaign, using Psychic Reformation (XPH), either via NPC or via Power Stones. In particular, I think it might be a good idea at low levels for Sizok to know (and use) the Attraction power, putting her high Charisma to more good use (for the save DC) and strengthening her claim to being a solid party face.

    If the campaign is going to be played mostly at low levels, swapping around the order of various levels can make Sizok more viable. In particular, starting her off with a level in Swashbuckler makes her viable in melee from the start. Stoneblessed and Blade Bravo can also be put off until Wilder abilities have matured. I put levels in the order they appear on the table for the sake of compatibility with the Backstory, as well as an earlier entry into the Secret Ingredient.

    Choosing Electricity as Sizok's dromite energy type is not necessary. If you wish, you can switch her Resistance and her Energy Ray to Fire, Cold, or Sonic without harm. I chose Electricity because (a) I like it, and (b) her personality fits reasonably well with the XPH's description of a typical Glimmer Caste Dromite personality: "always move at high speed, rarely resting in their pursuit of life's tasks." Note that Sonic energy rays do slightly less damage than other energy rays against creatures.

    Later Story Notes
    Spoiler
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    Level 5 (ECL 6):

    Two years of an intense cultural immersion program: an eternity to a very young and eager dromite, though it seemed the blink of an eye to her gnomish teachers. Sizok passed every test the Dinglegrinn priests and elders could devise for her. Her religious fervor to Garl Glittergold and the other Gnomish gods was unquestionable; she could sing all forty-nine verses of the clan anthem; she could drink Zirthen's aunt's rum like an adult (though she hadn't beaten him in any drinking contests yet); and, most importantly, she managed to lace together all the priests' bootlaces while they were interviewing her. They're still not sure how she managed this prank, but they were pleased. It was likely her racial psionic talents had something to do with her success in this act of covert mischief.

    (Side note: Sizok chose to adopt a feminine persona while she was among the gnomes, in order to better fit their expectations of gender roles. It is unknown how much this decision was detemined mostly by the simple fact that Vuru knew the word "niece" rather than "nephew" in Gnomish.)

    With these tests passed, she was finally apprenticed to Dinglegrinn's master Duelist, Yonadollo. Garl knows, anyone who had spent time with her during her two-year immersion was surely relieved that she would finally stop asking, "when do I get to learn to use one of those sword-thingies? Er, epees?"

    ECL 13-15:

    If there is a question about why the last two Wilder levels show up in the build at just this point, here is the explanation: the Blade Bravo class description itself describes Blade Bravo 5 as a turning point, when the class begins to focus on size differences.

    I put a Wilder level in at this natural "break point"; and then, as soon as Sizok learns the Size Advantage class feature, it makes sense for her to train next in using her inborn psychic abilities to make herself as small as possible (i.e. taking another Wilder level that gives her the Compression power).
    Last edited by Ozymandias9; 2010-09-09 at 02:25 AM.
    78% of DM's started their first campaign in a tavern. [...]Where did you start yours?
    A street riot in a major city that was getting violent.
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  29. - Top - End - #149
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    GnomeWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    "'It’s your turn to move Ross.' I overheard my father’s long forgotten words amidst the bustling traffic of Manila. Same usual reminder when we were playing chess before his death. Can he still sense my indecisiveness, my predicament on my life now?"
    -Life in a Chessboard

    Quote Originally Posted by Wruk

    CN Gnome Psychic Warrior 4, Urban Ranger 1, Blade Bravo 10, Dragonstalker 3, Xorvintaal Exarch 2


    Story & Stats
    Spoiler
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    I've heard other's wish to be rich. How exciting it must be, how glamorous to meet the rich, the famous. That's total tortoise droppings. Wealth doesn't bring adventure and excitement. The nobs just find more expensive and extensive ways to be dull. Dull, dull dull. Even my name. Nine others before me with the same handle. NINE. All rich, gnome-lords with gold pouring out their gnavels. The Vive's only claim to something more exciting than pinching pennies and watching the dust settle upon them is the High Sword training. A Vive is trained in blade and form. For adventure and glory?! HA! No, it's as my Dad said, 'You cannot appreciate the gold if you've got a blade in your back!'. That's right, I need to know it so I can make MORE money. I admit, there is nothing inherently WRONG with money, but where's the interest?!

    Yeah, I had the money. Sometimes. I'd been trained in the Vive way of concentration as well. Could calculate the interest of a dozen different shares by the memorized rise and fall of historic merchant data in my head. I had other ways. The cards and dice. That was money-making with a little adventure. It wasn't about the winning, I could count the cards and come out ahead without breaking a sweat. It was seeing how far I could go before they accused me of cheating. What to do if they got angry at losing out to a little nob's son like myself. THAT was fun! Even that would begin to pale though. Yeah, I was rich, in looks and brains and wealth... but I'm miserable. I live for surprises and the unexpected... where is the excitement in watching the money grow taller than I? Life wasn't meant to be that easy.

    It was a long road to depression having all I could want. I began to slip away, fight in underground fencing matches, blades naked and unpadded. A place where nobs as bored as I but cowards at heart came to get their jollies. Man to man.... well, gnome. You can't be a Vive gnome without knowing a few tricks, but I kept them out of the arena. No changing size or knocking the steel away with a thought. I didn't care whether I lived or died. Never killed a man, just infuriated him, got him hopping and stupid, pricked him bloody if he was being one himself, that kind of thing. Then I'd give him a good gnutting once he was worn out, and they'd drag him off the mats. Shoulda seen their faces, those who had bet on one of us to die. I put in a few bets myself now and again, always raked it in. More fornicating farthings. Little drip drops in a bucket already overflowing with gain and angsty gnomish gnothings.

    Then one day I came to meet another gnomish opponent. Not fought one of them before. Plently of halflings, bouncing off the walls until poked a hole in their feet, but no gnomes. He was clad head to toe, mask covering him. Well, I'd fought the ugly ones as well as the pretty boys. Hide the mug for all I care. We sized each other up and fought. Now, I'd met some pretty tough nuts on the mat, nearly went to see Garl myself more than a few times, but in the end it worked out for me. This fella... he pressed me and fought and gave ground... but it was play. You can tell it when they wish to kill you. This guy wasn't just messing with me, he was teaching me. It was a tough tutoring, though, for if I let myself down a moment I got it where it hurt. The seats usually had a good number of sponsors or busybodies, but as the battle raged on messengers were sent, and the stadiums above filling with the wagering louts. Finally I grew bored with it. If he was having fun, let's turn up the giggles! I concentrated, and sweat exploded off of me as I internally roared with metabolism, burning off my own flesh and growing to the size of a bantam cock. There was shouts of outrage from above. I'd done what I hadn't before, crossed the line, broke the rules of engagement. My opponent stood still, whether from shock or what I don't know. I ran and feinted, diving between his legs, but he did something I to this day cannot recall. Something was done with his feet and I found myself kicked and flipped back over his head where he caught me, neat as you please. He began to squeeze, and struggle as I could, I couldn't draw breath. I welcomed the coming darkness. This was a death with style and all the trimmings. If my lungs hadn't been crushed I'd have laughed...

    I awoke with a bit of soreness in my sides and groaned, knowing he'd let me live. If I was with Garl I'd not be hurting, and if I'd gone to the lower places I'd likely be hurting more.

    I was on a sofa in a familiar house. I'd been here more than I had my own. Uncle Grindle's place. Don't recall as he was related, not a Vive anyways, but he was richer and quicker than us lot.

    "Young duff, if I'd have known you wanted to commit suicide I'd have helped you out. Something a bit more pleasant. Poisoned women springs to mind, all the venom laced kisses you could want. Perhaps some of the hundred proof stuff from the horn of a black unicorn? But stabbing... mmm, well, whatever your generation goes for I suppose." a voice said, and I turned.

    Uncle Grindle... in the bodysuit of my opponent. It was him alright, that golden-tan skin, the feel of a man ten times his size.

    "Ok, bring on the women..." I groaned, and fell back into the cushions.

    "Well, you'll have to give me a little time. The arsenic lipstick alone takes forever to apply. Eighty years some time." he said wryly. "Wruk, what in the Hells?"

    "Oh, it's just so pointless and dull. Might have been fine for you, seeing the fruits after planting. But I have nothing to go for."

    "Your father should be whipped for his neglect. Shall we take away your allowance?" he ribbed. He held up a knowing hand as I opened my mouth to complain.

    "I know it Duff. Believe me, even after the plantings and sewings and reapings, you get tired of the fruit. Something else to sink your teeth in to... well, I have a proposition for you. You get home and rest and be back here in the morning. I'll find you some meat, my duff."

    I awoke the next morning and went in search of my father, but he'd left a message for me saying he'd be at Grindle's. I'd rather hoped to keep the old gnome out of this, but Uncle had piqued my interest. When I arrived there were guards all about. Dashing into the estate I found the once beautiful manor trashed, tapestries pulled down, and carpets up. Gashes were deep in the teal floors, and scorch marks on the walls. A great battle had obviously taken place here.

    Upon questioning the guards searching the manor they showed me a couple things that'd been found. My father's old sword, stained with ichor. Stuck to the blade was a gem-like scale.

    A number of wealthy men had disappeared like this I was informed, always with a crystal scale left. None had ever been found. This seemed to be true as months passed and no word came.

    I used all my father's connections, plus a few less reputable, but all I got in response was fearful ignorance or disjointed whispers. They all seemed to fear me, as if I was somehow known to the darkest shadows of society Whatever was going on was big, and I would learn nothing as a nob's son.

    It seemed I would have to find out on my own. As I contacted businessman to take over my father's finances I sold my profits and took to the streets. Left was my identity, my money, my old chums.

    "This wasn't the excitement I had wanted... " I thought to myself as I turned a bend in an alley. "But at least for awhile my life will be far from dull..."

    Level 5
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    Psychic Warrior 4/Urban Ranger 1

    Small Humanoid (gnome, psionic)
    Hit Dice: 4d8 + 1d8 (22 hp)
    Initiative: +2
    Speed: 20 ft. (4 squares)
    Armor Class: 20 (+3 armor, +2 dex, +4 shield, +1 size), touch 17, flat-footed 18
    Base Attack/Grapple: +4/-1
    Attack: Shard +9 melee (1d4, 18/20x2)
    Full Attack: Shard +9 melee (1d4, 18/20x2)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: Favored enemy (xorvintaal), psionics
    Special Qualities: Low-light vision, wild empathy
    Saves: Fort +6, Ref +5, Will +2 (+5 Combat Focus)
    Abilities Str 8, Dex 14, Con 10, Int 18, Wis 13, Cha 14
    Skills: Autohypnosis +8, Bluff +6, Craft (alchemy) +6, Concentration +6, Diplomacy +4, Gather Information +6, Hide +9, Intimidate +4, Move Silently +6, Knowledge (arcana) +7, Knowledge (psionics) +8, Profession (gambler) +3, Search +10, Sense Motive +4, Sleight of Hand +4, Spot +3
    Feats: Combat Expertise, Combat Focus, Urban Tracking, Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (rapier)
    Organization: Xorvintaal Exarchs
    Challenge Rating: 5
    Possessions: Shard (+1 Deepcrystal Rapier), Masterwork Studded Leather Armor

    Favored Enemy (Ex): Wruk gains a +2 bonus on Bluff, Listen, Sense Motive, Spot, and Survival checks when using these skills against Xorvintaals. Likewise, he gets a +2 bonus on weapon damage rolls against those of the organization.

    Psionics: Manifester level 4th. (Power Points per day = 11; Save DC 11 + power level):
    1st - Compression, Elfsight, Force Screen (+4 shield)
    2nd - Danger Sense

    Spell-like Abilities: Caster level 1st; save DC 12
    1/day - Dancing Lights, Ghost Sound, Prestidigitation, Speak with Animals (burrowing only)

    Wild Empathy: As Ranger ability, +4 bonus.


    It was going on the year anniversary of my father's disappearance. With only the clues of blood and scale, I had begun to piece together the story. The blood was dragon's, of a rare kind, as was the scale.

    As I gathered news I heard one name that at least set me a course... Xorvintaal. It was spoken as another might speak of a god. Of powers not to be understood that flowed through the city.

    I was forced to fight for my life as I sought answers for questions that others obviously didn't want me to know enough to even ask after. There seemed no connection between the attacks. It might be a sick grandmother slipping me poisoned tea, and the next a winged centaur diving upon me with battleaxe in hand. Accidents were often and plentiful. They kept me sharp, and eventually, through my skill, or their wariness, I never did know, they gradually lessened. I became wanted in the city, and even several of the outskirting towns.

    And yet... there was a pattern here. I could sense it vaguely, if none of the details.

    Xorvintaal... Xorvintaal...

    Level 10
    Spoiler
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    Psychic Warrior 4/Urban Ranger 1/Blade Bravo 3/Dragonstalker 2

    Small Humanoid (gnome, psionic)
    Hit Dice: 4d8 + 1d8 + 3d8 + 2d8 (44 hp)
    Initiative: +2
    Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)
    Armor Class: 25 (+7 armor, +2 dex, +1 dodge, +4 shield, +1 size), touch 18, flat-footed 23
    Base Attack/Grapple: +9/+4
    Attack: Shard +17 (1d4+3, 18/20x2)
    Full Attack: Shard +17/+12 melee (1d4+3, 18/20x2)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: Favored enemy (xorvintaal), flourish +3, psionics, sneak attack (dragon) +2d6
    Special Qualities: Hunting bonus +3, low-light vision, mobile fighting (+1 dodge), wild empathy
    Saves: Fort +7, Ref +11, Will +6 (+8 Combat Focus)
    Abilities Str 8, Dex 14, Con 10, Int 18, Wis 13, Cha 15
    Skills: Autohypnosis +11, Bluff +8, Craft (alchemy) +6, Concentration +8, Diplomacy +4, Gather Information +13, Hide +14, Intimidate +4, Move Silently +10, Knowledge (arcana) +9, Knowledge (local) +11, Knowledge (psionics) +9, Profession (gambler) +4, Search +11, Sense Motive +9, Sleight of Hand +4, Spot +3
    Feats: Blind-Fight, Combat Expertise, Combat Focus, Goad feat, Psionic Charge, Urban Tracking, Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (rapier)
    Organization: Xorvintaal Exarchs
    Challenge Rating: 10
    Possessions: Shard (+4 Deepcrystal Rapier), +4 Masterwork Studded Leather Armor

    Favored Enemy (Ex): Wruk gains a +2 bonus on Bluff, Listen, Sense Motive, Spot, and Survival checks when using these skills against Xorvintaals. This bonus increases to +5 against Xorvintaal dragons. Likewise, he gets a +2 bonus on weapon damage rolls against those of the organization.

    Hunting Bonus: As Draconimicon, +3.

    Psionics: Manifester level 4th. (Power Points per day = 11; Save DC 11 + power level):
    1st - Compression, Elfsight, Force Screen (+4 shield)
    2nd - Danger Sense

    Sneak Attack (Dragon): +2d6

    Spell-like Abilities: Caster level 1st; save DC 12
    1/day - Dancing Lights, Ghost Sound, Prestidigitation, Speak with Animals (burrowing only)

    Wild Empathy: As Ranger ability, +4 bonus.


    Despite all my precautions I was caught one day. Just as I was beginning to see the picture. It was sudden, unseen, yet not wholly unsurprising. If what I learned was true, 'big' did not begin to describe what I had delved into.

    I was knocked out, and when I came to all was black. I was blindfolded and paralyzed, couldn't move a muscle. There was no sound, until the Voice. I've always revered Garl, as a good Vive gnome, but I would never have said I was particularly god fearing. Until that moment. The voice filled my ears and my head.

    It told me that I would now know what happens to those who interfered with Xorvintaal. The floor beneath my feet vanished, and I felt myself plummeting. I know not how long I fell, but sometimes I would be sliding, others in empty space. Finally I touched bottom, and I felt my ankle give way. The paralysis had faded, and the blindfold long since torn away, but that mattered not, for all was lightless. The smell was... overpowering, unlike any I'd ever experienced. The flooring wet and pliant. If you stood still for longer than a few moments you found yourself sinking down.

    Days and nights meant nothing here, but I sought to find the boundaries of my prison. There were slimy pits, and tunnels going farther down, but I never found a wall, though great piles of debris and stone and and stinking masses were everywhere. There were the sounds too, and echoes. If not for special senses heightened by my childhood training I'd have died I'm sure, but I knew when the attacks would come.

    I began to forget what light was, and fresh breezes and peace of mind. Even my sleep was of horror, and I learned to sleep for only minutes before awaking to defend myself or hide from the nameless creatures below. I would then sleep in a moment only to repeat.

    Then there was again the Voice. It seemed like a memory out of a dream of a life before this hell. It asked me if I had tired of the dark, of constantly being on edge. I might have given my soul to be out, but all it said was 'Then come into the light and join me.'

    And I was. A great room full of comfortable chairs, and a single candle that though dim and flickering was like the sun itself to my eyes.

    Sitting by it was my father... and curled around the room a dragon of amythest scales. My father smiled and stood. He embraced.

    "You've done the family proud." he whispered.

    Then the dragon was gone, and there was but gold Uncle Grindle, looking as proud as my sire.

    That was how I began my first play in the Great Game. I was the 9th generations of gnomes who'd devoted their time to it. All of my father's financial empire was either a cover or part of the game, and he'd played it so well even his child hadn't known. We'd even been bred to it, each child raised for intelligence and cunning and a spirit for adventure and strategy. I was the culmination of it. A child so resourceful and intelligent that he could play nearly at the level of the great serpents themselves. The false abduction, my searchings, the pit... all had been a test of my abilities, a sharpening of my wits and mind.

    That night the ceremony was performed, and I became a Player. I was given a book that Grindle himself had written, in it was the key to mental exercises and strategies to propel one forward. There was a side effect to it I hadn't read of however. I began to sense the entire city itself. I knew where all the pieces were, how things fit, how this effected that. As much as I respected Grindle, I felt there should be a few things I was capable of if I was to truly exceed in the game.

    It was what I had always sought. It became everything.

    Level 15
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    Psychic Warrior 4/Urban Ranger 1/Blade Bravo 5/Dragonstalker 3/Xorvintaal Exarch 2

    Small Humanoid (gnome, psionic)
    Hit Dice: 4d8 + 1d8 + 5d8 + 3d8 (58 hp)
    Initiative: +2
    Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)
    Armor Class: 25 (+7 armor, +2 dex, +1 dodge, +4 shield, +1 size), touch 18, flat-footed 23
    Base Attack/Grapple: +14/+9
    Attack: Shard +21 melee (1d4+3, 16/20x2)
    Full Attack: Shard +21/+16/+11 melee (1d4+4, 18/20x2)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: Dragon's favor, favored enemy (xorvintaal), flourish +3, ignore natural armor, psionics, size advantage, sneak attack (dragon) +2d6, sneak attack (melee) +1d6
    Special Qualities: Hunting bonus +3, low-light vision, mobile fighting (+1 dodge), wild empathy
    Saves: Fort +8, Ref +12, Will +8 (+10 Combat Focus)
    Abilities Str 8, Dex 14, Con 10, Int 24, Wis 13, Cha 15
    Skills: Autohypnosis +19, Bluff +8, Craft (alchemy) +6, Concentration +15, Diplomacy +4, Gather Information +13, Hide +15, Intimidate +4, Move Silently +10, Knowledge (arcana) +10, Knowledge (local) +12, Knowledge (psionics) +10, Profession (gambler) +4, Search +12, Sense Motive +16, Sleight of Hand +4, Spot +3
    Feats: Blind-Fight, Combat Expertise, Combat Focus, Goad feat, Iron Will (B), Mindsight, Psionic Charge, Urban Tracking, Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (rapier), Wise To Your Ways
    Organization: Xorvintaal Exarchs
    Challenge Rating: 14
    Possessions: Shard (+5 Keen Deepcrystal Rapier), +4 Masterwork Studded Leather Armor, Otyugh Hole, Tome of Clear Thought +4

    Dragon's Favor (Ex):
    - Draconic Reverie (+4 to attack or save)
    - Energy Immunity (Dessication)
    - Frightful Presence (DC 19)
    - Lair's Rebirth (Word of Recall but also brought back to life)
    - Lair's Return (Word of Recall)

    Favored Enemy (Ex): Wruk gains a +2 bonus on Bluff, Listen, Sense Motive, Spot, and Survival checks when using these skills against Xorvintaals. This bonus increases to +5 against Xorvintaal dragons. Likewise, he gets a +2 bonus on weapon damage rolls against those of the organization.

    Hunting Bonus: As Draconimicon, +3.

    Ignore Natural Armor: 1/day - Can ignore target's natural armor.

    Psionics: Manifester level 4th. (Power Points per day = 11; Save DC 12 + power level):
    1st - Compression, Elfsight, Force Screen (+4 shield)
    2nd - Danger Sense

    Sneak Attack (Dragon): +2d6

    Sneak Attack (Melee): +1d6

    Spell-like Abilities: Caster level 1st; save DC 12
    1/day - Dancing Lights, Ghost Sound, Prestidigitation, Speak with Animals (burrowing only)

    Wild Empathy: As Ranger ability, +4 bonus.


    In the first years, I was but a pawn. I was allowed a certain freedom so as not to chafe, but I went where Uncle needed me, and played my part like a good little gnome. He preferred to play by proxie, and the rules supported him. I liked a more personal touch. Oh, I could and did plan from a distance, and set up a rival agency of my own, which I would then fight. I began to keep in my head the entire sum of the city, who was beholden to who, who visited, and began to see the picture as even Grindle could not.

    I fought dragons themselves, mainly younger ones of no real challenge, and gained their respect and later obedience as I awed even they. If they wanted to advance they would follow me. Their Exarcs were mine to command, but I let them seek their own agendas. As such, Grindle never suspected how these seemingly unrelated pieces all were under a single Master until nearly 50 years later. With a thought I signaled all to converge at just the right moment.

    At first Grindle was confused, then enraged at my treachery. After a few moments however the began to laugh in appreciation, and thumped his tail in thunderous applause.

    "Wruk Vive to King. Check mate!" he roared.

    The game was on.


    Level 20
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    Psychic Warrior 4/Urban Ranger 1/Blade Bravo 10/Dragonstalker 3/Xorvintaal Exarch 2

    Small Humanoid (gnome, psionic)
    Hit Dice: 4d8 + 1d8 + 10d8 + 3d8 (80 hp)
    Initiative: +2
    Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)
    Armor Class: 28 (+8 armor, +4 dex, +1 dodge, +4 shield, +1 size), touch 20, flat-footed 24
    Base Attack/Grapple: +19/+14
    Attack: Shard +28 melee (1d4+4, 16/20x2)
    Full Attack: Shard +28/+23/+18+/13 melee (1d4+4, 16/20x2)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: Dragon's favor, favored enemy (xorvintaal), flourish +3, ignore natural armor, lethal riposte, psionics, size advantage, small but deadly, sneak attack (dragon) +2d6, sneak attack (melee) +2d6
    Special Qualities: Hunting bonus +3, low-light vision, mobile fighting (+1 dodge), wild empathy
    Saves: Fort +10, Ref +13, Will +11 (+13 Combat Focus) or against Xorvintaal dragons Fort +15, Ref +18, Will +16 (+18 Combat Focus)
    Abilities Str 8, Dex 18, Con 10, Int 31, Wis 13, Cha 16
    Skills: Autohypnosis +19, Bluff +8, Craft (alchemy) +6, Concentration +15, Diplomacy +4, Gather Information +13, Hide +17, Intimidate +4, Move Silently +12, Knowledge (arcana) +10, Knowledge (local) +12, Knowledge (psionics) +10, Profession (gambler) +4, Search +12, Sense Motive +14, Sleight of Hand +6, Spot +3
    Feats: Blind-Fight, Combat Expertise, Combat Focus, Dodge, Combat Awareness, Goad feat, Iron Will (B), Mindsight, Mobility, Psionic Charge, Urban Tracking, Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (rapier), Wise To Your Ways
    Organization: Xorvintaal Exarchs
    Challenge Rating: 19
    Possessions: Shard (+5 Keen Deepcrystal Rapier), +5 Masterwork Studded Leather Armor, Cognizance Crystal 17, Headband of Intellect +6, Manual of Quickness in Action +4, Otyugh Hole, Tome of Clear Thought +5
    Dragon's Favor (Ex):
    - Draconic Reverie (+4 to attack or save)
    - Energy Immunity (Dessication)
    - Frightful Presence (DC 19)
    - Lair's Rebirth (Word of Recall but also brought back to life)
    - Lair's Return (Word of Recall)

    Favored Enemy (Ex): Wruk gains a +2 bonus on Bluff, Listen, Sense Motive, Spot, and Survival checks when using these skills against Xorvintaals. This bonus increases to +5 against Xorvintaal dragons. Likewise, he gets a +2 bonus on weapon damage rolls against those of the organization.

    Hunting Bonus: As Draconimicon, +3.

    Ignore Natural Armor: 1/day - Can ignore target's natural armor.

    Psionics: Manifester level 4th. (Power Points per day = 11; Save DC 12 + power level):
    1st - Compression, Elfsight, Force Screen (+4 shield)
    2nd - Danger Sense

    Sneak Attack (Dragon): +2d6

    Sneak Attack (Melee): +2d6

    Spell-like Abilities: Caster level 1st; save DC 12
    1/day - Dancing Lights, Ghost Sound, Prestidigitation, Speak with Animals (burrowing only)

    Wild Empathy: As Ranger ability, +4 bonus.

    Character By Level
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    These are the base scores without adjustments. For full stats please see blocks in Stats & Story.

    {table=head]Level|Class|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Skills|Feats|Class Features
    1st|Psychic Warrior 1|
    +0
    |
    +2
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |Autohypnosis +4, Bluff +2, Concentration +3, Knowledge (arcane) +2, Knowledge (psionics) +4, Profession (gambler) +1, Sense Motive +2|Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (rapier)|Psionic Powers
    2nd|Psychic Warrior 2|
    +1
    |
    +3
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |Autohypnosis +5, Bluff +2, Concentration +4, Knowledge (arcane) +2, Knowledge (psionics) +4, Profession (gambler) +1, Search +1|Combat Expertise|-
    3rd|Psychic Warrior 3|
    +2
    |
    +3
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |Autohypnosis +6, Bluff +3, Concentration +5, Knowledge (arcane) +3, Knowledge (psionics) +4, Profession (gambler) +1, Search +2, Sense Motive +3|Combat Focus|-
    4th|Psychic Warrior 4|
    +3
    |
    +4
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |Autohypnosis +7, Bluff +3, Concentration +5, Knowledge (arcana) +3, Knowledge (psionics) +4, Profession (gambler) +2, Search +5|-|-
    5th|Urban Ranger 1|
    +4
    |
    +6
    |
    +3
    |
    +1
    |Autohypnosis +7, Bluff +4, Concentration +6, Gather Information +4, Hide +3, Move Silently +4, Knowledge (arcana) +3, Knowledge (psionics) +4, Profession (gambler) +2, Search +6, Sense Motive +3|Urban Tracking|Favorite Organization (Xorvintaals)
    6th|Blade Bravo 1|
    +5
    |
    +6
    |
    +5
    |
    +1
    |Autohypnosis +7, Bluff +4, Concentration +6, Gather Information +4, Hide +6, Move Silently +6, Knowledge (arcana) +3, Knowledge (psionics) +4, Profession (gambler) +2, Search +6, Sense Motive +4|Goad, Speed of Thought|Flourish
    7th|Blade Bravo 2|
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +6
    |
    +1
    |Autohypnosis +7, Bluff +5, Concentration +6, Gather Information +8, Hide +6, Move Silently +6, Knowledge (arcana) +4, Knowledge (psionics) +4, Profession (gambler) +2, Search +6, Sense Motive +5|-|Mobile Fighting
    8th|Blade Bravo 3|
    +7
    |
    +7
    |
    +6
    |
    +2
    |Autohypnosis +8, Bluff +6, Concentration +6, Gather Information +10, Hide +6, Move Silently +6, Knowledge (arcana) +4, Knowledge (local) +5, Knowledge (psionics) +4, Profession (gambler) +2, Search +6, Sense Motive +6|Blind-Fight|-
    9th|Dragonstalker 1|
    +8
    |
    +7
    |
    +8
    |
    +4
    |Autohypnosis +10, Bluff +6, Concentration +6, Gather Information +10, Hide +6, Move Silently +6, Knowledge (arcana) +5, Knowledge (local) +6, Knowledge (psionics) +5, Profession (gambler) +3, Search +7, Sense Motive +7|Psionic Charge|Hunting Bonus +1
    10th|Dragonstalker 2|
    +9
    |
    +7
    |
    +9
    |
    +5
    |Autohypnosis +10, Bluff +6, Concentration +8, Gather Information +11, Hide +8, Move Silently +8, Knowledge (arcana) +5, Knowledge (local) +7, Knowledge (psionics) +5, Profession (gambler) +3, Search +7, Sense Motive +8|-|Hunting Bonus +2, Sneak Attack (dragon) +2d6
    11th|Dragonstalker 3|
    +10
    |
    +8
    |
    +9
    |
    +5
    |Autohypnosis +10, Bluff +6, Concentration +8, Gather Information +11, Hide +8, Move Silently +8, Knowledge (arcana) +5, Knowledge (local) +7, Knowledge (psionics) +5, Profession (gambler) +3, Search +7, Sense Motive +9|-|Hunting Bonus +3, Ignore Natural Armor 1/day
    12th|Xorvintaal Exarch 1|
    +10
    |
    +8
    |
    +9
    |
    +5
    |Autohypnosis +10, Bluff +6, Concentration +8, Gather Information +11, Hide +8, Move Silently +8, Knowledge (arcana) +5, Knowledge (local) +7, Knowledge (psionics) +5, Profession (gambler) +3, Search +7, Sense Motive +10|Wise To Your Ways|Dragon's Favor, Telepathy
    13th|Xorvintaal Exarch 2|
    +10
    |
    +8
    |
    +9
    |
    +5
    |Autohypnosis +10, Bluff +6, Concentration +8, Gather Information +11, Hide +8, Move Silently +8, Knowledge (arcana) +5, Knowledge (local) +7, Knowledge (psionics) +5, Profession (gambler) +3, Search +7, Sense Motive +11|Iron Will (B)|-
    14th|Blade Bravo 4|
    +11
    |
    +8
    |
    +10
    |
    +5
    |Autohypnosis +15, Bluff +6, Concentration +11, Gather Information +11, Hide +8, Move Silently +8, Knowledge (arcana) +5, Knowledge (local) +7, Knowledge (psionics) +5, Profession (gambler) +3, Search +7, Sense Motive +12|-|Melee Sneak Attack +1d6
    15th|Blade Bravo 5|
    +12
    |
    +8
    |
    +10
    |
    +5
    |Autohypnosis +18, Bluff +6, Concentration +15, Gather Information +11, Hide +9, Move Silently +8, Knowledge (arcana) +5, Knowledge (local) +7, Knowledge (psionics) +5, Profession (gambler) +3, Search +7, Sense Motive +15|Mindsight|Size Advantage
    16th|Blade Bravo 6|
    +13
    |
    +9
    |
    +11
    |
    +6
    |Autohypnosis +19, Bluff +7, Concentration +17, Gather Information +11, Hide +10, Move Silently +10, Knowledge (arcana) +7, Knowledge (local) +7, Knowledge (psionics) +5, Profession (gambler) +3, Search +7, Sense Motive +16|Combat Reflexes|-
    17th|Blade Bravo 7|
    +14
    |
    +9
    |
    +11
    |
    +6
    |Autohypnosis +20, Bluff +8, Concentration +19, Gather Information +11, Hide +12, Move Silently +12, Knowledge (arcana) +7, Knowledge (local) +8, Knowledge (psionics) +5, Profession (gambler) +3, Search +7, Sense Motive +17|-|Small but Deadly
    18th|Blade Bravo 8|
    +15
    |
    +9
    |
    +12
    |
    +6
    |Autohypnosis +21, Bluff +9, Concentration +20, Gather Information +11, Hide +14, Move Silently +14, Knowledge (arcana) +7, Knowledge (local) +10, Knowledge (psionics) +5, Profession (gambler) +3, Search +7, Sense Motive +18|Combat Awareness|Melee Sneak Attack 2d6
    19th|Blade Bravo 9|
    +16
    |
    +10
    |
    +12
    |
    +7
    |Autohypnosis +22, Bluff +10, Concentration +20, Gather Information +11, Hide +16, Move Silently +16, Knowledge (arcana) +7, Knowledge (local) +10, Knowledge (psionics) +5, Profession (gambler) +3, Search +10, Sense Motive +19|Improved Critical|-
    20th|Blade Bravo 10|
    +17
    |
    +10
    |
    +13
    |
    +7
    |Autohypnosis +23, Bluff +11, Concentration +20, Gather Information +11, Hide +18, Move Silently +18, Knowledge (arcana) +7, Knowledge (local) +10, Knowledge (psionics) +5, Profession (gambler) +3, Search +12, Sense Motive +20|-|Lethal Riposte
    [/table]

    {table=head]Ability|Base|Race|Levels|Inherent|Enhancement|Total|Modifier
    STR|10|-2||||8|+0
    DEX|14|||+4||18|+4
    CON|8|+2||||10|+0
    INT|18||+2|+6|+5|31|+10
    WIS|13|||||13|+1
    CHA|13||+3|||16|+3
    [/table]

    Traits
    (not flaws)
    - Reckless
    - Slippery

    Feats
    1st - Combat Expertise, Weapon Finesse
    2nd - Weapon Focus (rapier)
    3rd - Combat Focus
    5th - Urban Tracking
    6th - Speed of Thought, Goad feat
    8th - Blind-Fight
    9th - Psionic Charge
    12th - Wise To Your Ways
    13th - Iron Will
    15th - Mindsight
    16th - Dodge
    18th - Combat Awareness
    19th - Mobility

    Languages Known: Common, Draconic, Dwarf, Giant, Gnome, Goblin


    Build Notes & Tricks
    Spoiler
    Show

    Ok, what you have here is a character made to play in the great draconic Game of Xorvintaal. Wruk has an almost supernatural knowledge of the board that is life, knowing where to move and who to manage.

    Classes
    Psychic Warrior was chosen for a number of reasons.
    First, the extra feats are nice, allowing me to complete a 3rd set of feat trees. As he is psionic now he can take some very interesting psionic feats to help him in being a living game piece.
    Second, he now has access to the Autohypnosis skill which is very useful with dragons, especially Xorvintaal dragons. Instead of taking feats to ignore fear or give bonuses against it, Wruk can now merely make an autohypnosis check to ignore their Frightful Presence. As well, Xorvintaals can choose to exude venom. Autohypnosis can also help with that. Thricely he also can memorize... everything. This works astoundingly well with Mindsight that I will discuss later.
    Third, the Compression power. It's not a new trick, but I'd be stupid not to make use of it.

    Urban Ranger allows me to gain bonuses against an entire organization, namely the players of Xorvintaal. He not only gains these bonuses against the dragons playing it, but also the other chess pieces. It also grants as a bonus feat one of the prerequisites for Dragonstalker.

    Dragonstalker & Blade Bravo
    Dragonstalker grants an extra +3 bonus for a total of +5 to Xorvintaal dragons. I also gain draconic sneak attacks, which stack with that granted by Blade Bravo for a 6d6 sneak attack whenever it misses me or is flat-footed. It also allows me to ignore natural armor once per day (dragon's or elsewise). Add this to the Blade Bravo's Lethal Riposte and once per day you can hit the dragon, no matter what. No dex, no armor, nothing. You hit it. The rest of the day you are still likely to hit it as the attacks against large creature granted by Blade Bravo and the attacks with Dragonstalker stack.

    Also, with my abilities against large creatures my

    Feats
    The feats here were chosen very carefully to make a character who knows exactly what he's facing and how to take them out.

    First off I want to introduce you to my favorite part of this build. It is without a doubt overpowered. You might even say cheese. The Xorvintaal Exarch template grants you telepathy 100 miles to speak with your patron dragon. The Mindsight feat allows you to determine the square of any and every creature with an Int of 1 or more, their Intelligence score, and their creature type within range of your telepathy ability. As such... Wruk now knows every single creature within 100 miles. I just gotta say it again. 100 miles up, down, and around. 'Nothing' can hide from him. He knows how they move, where they are going, who is meeting who... and with his Autohypnosis check he can memorize it. He can keep track of them all, though he'd probably ignore most of the population unless looking for gatherings of specific folks of certain mentalities and types, but those of unusual creature type or those with high intelligences he'd keep in his head. Also, anyone he'd meet he'd note their int, type, and follow them mentally. In fact, it'd be unlikely he could become lost because he'd have the entire layout of a city by seeing everyone passing through and around. It'd be like thousands of points of light flowing in and around a 3-D lay-out. I know if a gang is following me by their collective scores I met before, and can avoid them. I can't be caught flat-footed because I know where they are behind me.

    With Blind-Fight I am also able to re-roll due to miss-chance because of concealment. As I know what square they are in I know where to aim. Many other uses besides.

    Ok, let's get off that. You have Combat Focus and Combat Awareness. Through these I know the Hit Point total of my opponents, allies, etc. Then with my high Sense Motive score I can detect their HD total via the Sense Motive Expanded Description via Complete Adventurer. If it weren't for the auto-penalty I'd give him a flaw so as to take Combat Intuition as a bonus feat so I could size up my opponent as a free action and get a bonus.

    So with these four feats I am able to detect square, type, int score, HP total and HD of every creature I meet. Throw in Detect Hostile Intent power and I also know if they wish me ill.

    Also, Wise to Your Ways feat works well with the favored enemy and dragon stalker abilities. Grants me a +3 bonus to saves against Xorvintaal abilities in general, and +5 bonus against Xorvintaal dragons in particular.

    Finally, Psionic Charge. I took it purely for flavor. It allows Wruk to move as a knight, able to charge around things.

    Attack
    Well, as is by 20th level Wruk has an attack of +21. Against Xorvintaals, +23. If they are larger, and most will be, you get a bonus of at least +25. I manifest Compression, and it's +29 minimum without magical enhancements. Against very large opponents my fellow here can have attacks against them in the 40's with his magical weapon. Note again how he can ignore natural armor once per day as well.

    Now, with that in mind, he has a 2d6, or 4d6 if dragon, sneak attack he can do whenever an opponent misses. He can channel power points into his weapon for an additional 2d6. Then there is the weapon damage itself. Throw in added bonuses from favored enemy if that is what he's attacking and you have a fellow who is second to none in the ranks of the Great Game, and no slob outside of it either.

    Xorvintaal Exarch
    Almost forgot about him despite it all. Along with the telepathy cheese, Wruk is effectively immortal. You make sure you 'always' have a single token held in reserve so that if you die you are teleported to safety and health.

    If the going gets tough, or he's surrounded despite all his planning and ability to detect the patterns of folks, he can also teleport out of their back to his lair.

    Rarely is it possible to actually and completely defeat him.


    Equipment
    The equipment is listed in the Story & Stats section. What he has is specifically useful to him/the build. The rest could be anything you wish to add. They aren't specific to the build.

    I'd like him to also have read the Draco Mystere from the Draconimicon for flavor purposes. It grants Low-light vision, Immunity to magic sleep effects and paralysis and a +5 inherent bonus to Knowledge (arcana) about dragons


    Sources
    Spoiler
    Show

    Complete Scoundrel
    Otyugh's Hole (p. 151)

    Draconimicon
    Dragonstalker PrC

    Expanded Psionics Handbook
    Autohypnosis skill
    Deepcrystal material
    Psionic Charge & Speed of Thought feats
    Psychic Warrior class

    Ghostwalk
    Wise To Your Ways feat

    Lords of Madness
    Mindsight feat

    Monster Manual V
    Xorvintaal Exarch template

    Player's Handbook II
    Combat Focus & Combat Awareness feat

    Races of Stone
    Blade Bravo PrC
    Goad feat

    Player's Handbook 3.5
    Everything Else

    Unearthed Arcana
    Reckless & Slippery traits
    Urban Ranger class
    Urban Tracking feat
    Last edited by Ozymandias9; 2010-09-09 at 02:18 AM.
    78% of DM's started their first campaign in a tavern. [...]Where did you start yours?
    A street riot in a major city that was getting violent.
    Spoiler
    Show

  30. - Top - End - #150
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    GnomeWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Iron Chef Optimization Challenge XI

    "I want to be a cat inside your arms
    I want to stay here until lonely nights ended
    I want to be a cat, words are momentary
    But I'll make it remain with a scar"
    -Refrain, "Neko Ni Naritai" (with apologies to Spitz for poor translation)

    Quote Originally Posted by Nekoya
    Nekoya

    猫矢
    I don't bother chasing mice around
    I slink down the alley, looking for a fight
    Howlin' to the moonlight on a hot summer night

    - Stray Cats, Stray Cat Strut

    Useless Kanji Note: Nekoya is written with the kanji for ‘cat’ and ‘dart’.

    Brief Build Stub:
    Race:Tibbit
    Alignment: Chaotic Good
    Class and Level: Warlock 4/Stoneblessed 3/Ruathar 3/Blade Bravo 10
    Character Background
    Spoiler
    Show
    Tibbits as a race descend from familiars. After generations of being used by wizards as familiars, cats eventually gained the ability to transform. In her alternate humanoid form, tibbits interact with their former masters and the world around them.
    Gnome society has a lot of spellcasters; with those, come a lot of familiars. So it is just natural that a few tibbits make their homes in gnome settlements.
    Nekoya was born in one such settlement, from tibbit parents that she never knew. Raised by gnomes, the arcane resonance in her blood soon became apparent when she manifested the powers of a warlock. A trickster and flirt by heart, Nekoya got in trouble really frequently but she was such a good kid and had such a kind heart that the gnomes never minded her.
    Even though she was proud to be a tibbit, Nekoya felt a little lonely being the only one around, so she tried her to fit in gnome society. Her devotion to gnome ways eventually made her a diplomat, which many people found extremely weird, since Nekoya was a liar and a witch, but she was not actually that good at convincing people (that is, other than lying outright to their face). Maybe the fact that she had already slept with half the settlement’s leaders helped. Maybe it had nothing to do with it.
    As a diplomat, Nekoya spent a lot of time in a nearby elven kingdom. The elves were less forgiving of Nekoya’s trickery and once threatened to outright ban here, after she thought it was a fun idea to swap a few wizard’s spellbooks for gnome literature. Saddened, Nekoya was packing to leave when she accidentaly discovered one of the wizard’s she tricked was actually an albino drow spy. With all odds against her and not even her charm getting her anything remotely close to assistance, Nekoya had to single-handedly defeat and expose the traitor, which nearly cost her life. She was then considered an elf-friend, which made her very happy.
    She decided to return to the gnome settlement she was born in, but had a lot of adventures with increasingly weird company. Nekoya traveled with a dwarf that resembled a bear (She could swear he had a fist behind all that beard!), a really power hungry wu jen addicted to starmetal (They might have had a fling, or they might not. Depends on who tells the story...), a masked spellscale ex-criminal wielding a variety of different weapons and masks (While he was a fun travelling companion, Nekoya realized they got over their heads everytime, so they parted their ways.), a human psion girl that had a knack for being vile and for the cutting practice (Nekoya thought she was bad luck, since people always got sick while around her. She was also too creepy for the tibbit, once she got to know her.), a goblin that hated gnomes with a passion and used the power of eath itself to empower him (Somehow, Nekoya and him got along fine. The goblin left after he had a disagreement with the dwarf mentioned earlier – no one wanted to see that guy angry!), a sun elf devoted to Corellon that sang fiercely (Nekoya took to calling him ‘war song companion’ and he would always smile upon hearing the nickname.), a killoren master of nature, fire and blade (She eventually got to share Nekoya’s bed a few times, after the wu jen left. Nekoya couldn’t resist repeating how ‘hot’ her partner was all the time.), a changeling dancer (As beautiful as she was deadly – Nekoya kept a safe distance from her.), an aasimar devoted to entropy (Too chaotic for even Nekoya to understand!) and even a bard ghost (Even dead, she sang beautifully.)! Nekoya had a lot of fun with her adventures, learning to use her side to her advantage against the various challenges she faced.
    One morning, years after returning to her home settlement and various adventures later, Nekoya simply vanished. No one knows where she went, but that might he just part of another prank she is trying to pull.


    Stats:
    Str 8 - 2 racial = 6
    Dex 14 + 2 racial = 16 + 4 inherent = 20 + 6 enhancement = 26
    Con 14 +2 at level 7 (stoneborn) = 16
    Int 13
    Wis 13
    Cha 16 +1 at every 4 levels= 21 + 5 inherent + 6 enhancement = 32

    Racial Abilities
    Spoiler
    Show

    Darkvision 60 ft; Small size; Speed 20ft; +2 Spot, Jump, Escape Artist.
    Feline Transformation: Become a Tiny-sized housecat with Str -8 and Dex +2 and scent. Equipment transforms to become part of her cat body; she only loses the benefits of weapons, shields, armor or robes she wears or carries. Other items that require a physical apparatus adopt a form suitable to a cat. Tibbits normally can't use invocations in cat form, since they have somatic components, but the Surrogate Spellcasting feat fixes that. The whole somatic component thing is debatable, of course, and adressed below.


    Level Breakdown
    Spoiler
    Show
    Nekoya
    {table=head]Level|Class|Base Attack<br>Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Skills|Feats|Class Features

    1st|Warlock 1|
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +2
    |Appraise (cc) 2, Bluff 4, Craft (stoneworking) 4|Surrogate Spellcasting|Eldritch blast 1d6, least invocation (summon swarm)

    2nd|Warlock 2|
    +1
    |
    +0
    |
    +0
    |
    +3
    |Bluff +1, Craft (stoneworking) +1, Use Magic Device +1|none|Detect Magic at will, least invocation (eldritch glaive)

    3rd|Warlock 3|
    +2
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    +3
    |Bluff +1, Use Magic Device +2|Weapon Finesse|Damage reduction 1/cold iron, eldritch blast 2d6

    4th|Warlock 4|
    +3
    |
    +1
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    |Bluff +1, Speak Language (cc) (Terran)|None|Deceive item, least invocation (entropic warding)

    5th|Stoneblessed 1|
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    |Bluff +1, Listen +2|None|Stonebond

    6th|Stoneblessed 2|
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +1
    |
    +4
    |Bluff +1, Listen +2|Combat Expertise|Racial battle technique

    7th|Stoneblessed 3|
    +5
    |
    +4
    |
    +2
    |
    +5
    |Bluff +1, Listen +2|None|Stoneborn

    8th|Ruathar 1|
    +5
    |
    +4
    |
    +4
    |
    +7
    |Concentration +2, Spot +2, Listen +1|Martial Weapon Proficiency (rapier) (bonus)|Word of friendship, gift of the elves, eldritch blast 3d6

    9th|Ruathar 2|
    +6
    |
    +4
    |
    +5
    |
    +8
    |Concentration +2, Spot +3|Weapon Focus (rapier)|Low-light vision, elfwise, lesser invocation (beshadowed blast), swap summon sworm for see the invisible

    10th|Ruathar 3|
    +7
    |
    +5
    |
    +5
    |
    +8
    |Concentration +1, Spot +3, Listen +1|Weapon Focus (rapier)|Low-light vision, elfwise, eldritch blast 4d6

    11th|Blade Bravo 1|
    +8
    |
    +5
    |
    +7
    |
    +8
    |Bluff +3, Concentration +2|Goad (bonus)|Flourish

    12th|Blade Bravo 2|
    +9
    |
    +5
    |
    +8
    |
    +8
    |Bluff +3, Tumble +2|Don’t Mind Me|Mobile fighting

    13th|Blade Bravo 3|
    +10
    |
    +6
    |
    +8
    |
    +9
    |Bluff +1, Concentration +1, Tumble +3|Combat Reflexes (bonus)|None

    14th|Blade Bravo 4|
    +11
    |
    +6
    |
    +9
    |
    +9
    |Bluff +1, Concentration +1, Tumble +3|none|Melee sneak attack 1d6

    15th|Blade Bravo 5|
    +12
    |
    +6
    |
    +9
    |
    +9
    |Bluff +1, Concentration +1, Tumble +3|Craven|Size advantage

    16th|Blade Bravo 6|
    +13
    |
    +7
    |
    +10
    |
    +10
    |Bluff +1, Concentration +2, Tumble +2|Blind-fight (bonus)|none

    17th|Blade Bravo 7|
    +14
    |
    +7
    |
    +10
    |
    +10
    |Bluff +1, Concentration +2, Tumble +2|None|Small but Deadly

    18th|Blade Bravo 8|
    +15
    |
    +7
    |
    +11
    |
    +10
    |Bluff +1, Concentration +2, Tumble +2|Twining Trip|Melee sneak attack 2d6

    19th|Blade Bravo 9|
    +16
    |
    +8
    |
    +11
    |
    +11
    |Bluff +1, Concentration +2, Tumble +2|Improved Trip|None

    20th|Blade Bravo 10|
    +17
    |
    +8
    |
    +12
    |
    +10
    |Bluff +1, Concentration +2, Tumble +2|None|Lethal riposte[/table]


    Class Abilities from Ruathar and Stoneblessed
    Spoiler
    Show

    Stonebond: +2 on Listen and Craft (alchemy) checks. Bluff, Hide, Listen, Perform and Spellcrafted added to Stoneblessed list of class skills.
    Racial Battle Technique: +4 dodge bonus versus giants, +1 on attack rolls versus goblinoids and kobolds
    Stoneborn: +2 Con, considered a gnome for all effects related to race, speak with animals once a day
    Elfwise: +2 on Search, Spot and Listen checks
    Star Blessing: +1 on attack rolls and saving throws while under the night sky
    Arvandor’s Grace: +50% increase on maximum lifespan and the lower limit of each age category. Applied to tibbits, this means middle age at 187 years, old age at 300, venerable at 450 and a maximum age of 450+(3d100x1.5).


    Invocations Known
    beshadowed blast, summon swarm (replaced later by see the unseen), eldritch glaive, entropic warding

    Gear Suggested
    Aside from stat-boosters and the always common amulet of natural armor and ring of protection, a few items synergize rather well with Nekoya’s abilities:
    Veil of allure (+2 to DC of Charisma-based spell-like abilities)
    Gauntlets of heartfelt blows (adds Charisma modifier to melee damage rolls, explicitly includes touch attacks as well)
    Greater chausuble of fell power
    Rogue’s Vest (+2 Hide, +1d6 sneak attack)

    Sources Used:
    Tibbit race, Riposte feat, gauntlets of heartfelt blows – Dragon Compendium
    Surrogate Spellcasting feat – Savage Species
    Warlock class, all invocations except for eldritch glaive – Complete Arcane
    Eldritch glaive invocation – Dragon Magic
    Blade Bravo and Stoneblessed classes; Goad feat – Races of Stone
    Ruathar class – Races of the Wild
    Craven feat – Champions of Ruin
    Veil of allure, (greater) chausuble of fell power – Magic Item Compendium
    Don’t Mind Me and Twining Trip feats – Fabulous Cats article
    Weapon Finesse, Combat Expertise, Blind-Fight, Improved Trip and Weapon Focus feats – Player’s Handbook
    Cloak of displacement – Dungeon Master’s Guide

    Sweet Spot – Level 15
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    At level 15, Nekoya can afford gauntlets of heartfelt blows and dexterity +4 (28000), a veil of allure (14000), a greater chausuble of fell power (18000), rogue’s vest (14000), a major cloak of displacement and charisma +4 (66000), a ring of protection +2 (8000) and bracers of armor +8 (64000), keeping 2000gp in change. She also has a minor magic item (DM-dependant, but +1 rapier fits her background) from her Ruathar levels.
    With this equipment, she has the following stats:
    Abilities: Str 6 (1 in cat form), Dex 20 (22 in cat form), Con 16, Int 13, Wis 13 and Cha 23
    Senses: low-light vision, darkvision, scent, see invisibility
    Saving Throws: Fortitude +9, Reflex +12, Will +10 (+8 vs fear)
    Feats: Don’t Mind Me, Combat Expertise, Craven, Goad, Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (rapier)
    Base Attack Bonus +12, Hit Points: 7d6+8d8+45
    Armor Class 26 (+8 bracers of armor, +1 size, +2 deflection, +5 Dex) or 28 (+8 bracers of armor, +2 size, +2 deflection, +6 Dex) in cat form; 50% miss chance
    Attack: eldritch blast +17 ranged touch (+19 in cat form), damage 6d6 plus blidness (Fortitude DC 22 negates)
    Full-Attack: eldritch glaive +17/12/7 (+19/14/9 in cat form) melee touch, damage 6d6 plus 6 fire plus blindness (Fortitude DC 22 negates)
    Special Attacks: melee sneak attack +3d6+15
    Skills: Appraise +3, Bluff +24, Concentration +14, Craft (stoneworking) +6, Listen +13, Use Magic Device +9, Speak Language (Terran), Search +3, Spot +13, Tumble +16
    Combat: If at all possible, Nekoya tries to enter fights in cat form, since it increases both her attack bonuses and her AC (and her bonus from the Size Advantage feature). It’s easier when she is on the offensive, since cats are rarely seen as agressive (though with all her jewelry, she sure seems like a target). Wither her high Bluff and Goad feat, she might keep a melee opponent focused on her while she dodges – while her natural AC is not very high, she gets an added bonus of +2 for each size category between her and the opponent from her Blade Bravo levels. She still has 50% miss chance to sport, even against other Tiny sized opponents.
    Nekoya has a full-attack routine that deals 6d6+6 damage each hit plus a save for blindness. It’s not much, but it increases significantly if she has the opportunity to sneak attack (which happens by itself if the oppoent fails his save) – with 9d6+21 damage on each hit, she suddenly seems a lot more dangerous.
    During combat, Nekoya can really mess around entering opponent’s squares, since she does not provoke for doing so and she has Tumble high enough to move with relative impunity throughout the battlefield.
    Outside Combat: With high Bluff and good senses (low-light vision, darkvision, scent and see invisibility!), Nekoya is a good asset to most adventuring groups. She is also a flirt and her Bluff skills help to represent that side of her. Her connection to gnomes and ruathar status also have the potential of cutting some slack for her group from time to time.


    Yes, I can trip you
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    This trick only becomes possible at high levels, thanks to the feats from the Fabulous Cats article and the bonus feat from Blade Bravo at 9. Nekoya can enter a foe’s square without provoking, because of the Don’t Mind Me feat. She can also trip using her Dexterity modifier instead of her Strenght, because of the Twining Trip feat. And she does not provoke for tripping, because of Improved Trip. Oh, and she gets an attack for it.
    So congrats, a Str 1 cat just tripped you.
    This works best with Lethal Riposte. First, Nekoya full-attacks with her eldritch glaive. Then, when attacked (and missed) she gains an extra attack from Lethal Ripost, and trips the opponent. If she succeeds, not only does she get an extra attack, she screws up the opponent’s full attack.
    Maybe you are wondering ‘don’t size modifiers make this pointless’? Well, Twining Trip flat-out states a Dexterity check versus opponent’s Strenght or Dexterity. Size is not even mentioned.


    On Invocations and Somatic Components
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    RAW, invocations don't have somatic components. The invocation section (Complete Arcana, page 7) mentions nothing of the sort and spell-like ability don't have somatic components per default. The only mention of somatic components for warlock's is in the weapons/armor section... and it is a simple cut-and-paste from Bard anyway.
    Also, tibbit discription says they 'cannot cast spells with a verbal or somatic component' (Dragon Compendium, page 25). It could be argued that invocations are not spells and as such would be useable, but that's just plain silly and I'd smack someone with a book if they tried to pull that on me.
    Savage Species, though, has the Surrogate Spellcasting feat, that allows you to substitute 'vocalizations and gestures
    appropriate to your shape' to provide somatic/verbal components. It requires Wis 13, which is a bit of a hit on Nekoya's stats, but I think it's well worth it. Surrogate Spellcasting specifically applies to spells (probably because by the time SS was out nothing else hat somaic components), but if you don't consider invocations to be spells for this purpose, Nekoya does not even need to feat to use'em in feline form, granting her a free feat – take Riposte, from Dragon Compendium, then. It requires base attack +5, so it can only be taken at 5th-level, but it works a lot like Lethal Riposte – except it requires you to use Combat Expertise to trigger it and it does not make the target flat-footed. With the Riposte feat, at level 20 she can swing twice with her eldritch glaive when an opponent misses her, each time causing a save against blindness along with damage.


    On Yoruichi similarities
    As I finished this build, it surprised me how much it was similar to ShihouinYoruichi from Bleach. Tibbits have dark skin in their humanoid form, just like Yoruichi. They turn into cats, just like Yoruichi. Nekoya has a sword that she does not get to use, just like Yoruichi. Nekoya’s main weapon is an eldritch glaive – Yoruichi’s ace in a sleeve up until now is energy-based as well. I was really surprised, because it was not intentional, but it makes me kinda happy since I like Yoruichi a lot.
    Last edited by Ozymandias9; 2010-09-09 at 03:20 AM.
    78% of DM's started their first campaign in a tavern. [...]Where did you start yours?
    A street riot in a major city that was getting violent.
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