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  1. - Top - End - #751
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Currently, i got 'em guesstimated as CR 15, unless you add a whole lot of spell-like abilities.
    Last edited by LOTRfan; 2011-04-19 at 07:40 PM.
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Well, this is based off of Eldan's Seal Breaker suggestion; it's trumpet will have an inherent 9th level spell as an ability. All though that does make me think of something. Do we want this tier to be trumpets? I mean, yeah, I wanna' keep the musical theme, but what about other instruments/forms? Just a thought.
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    If you want to diversify the Trumpets by instrument, just the Brass family alone will probably provide enough vectors. For example, a set of seven:

    horn
    bugle
    cornet
    flugelhorn
    euphonium
    tuba
    trombone

    Or you could diversify them by pitch range:

    soprano
    alto
    contralto
    countertenor/falsetto
    tenor
    baritone
    bass
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  4. - Top - End - #754
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    That was actually what I was originally going for. A Disjunction Archon, for instance, would have just a standard trumpet. Trumpet archons have an herald's trumpet, while destructive archons might have a sousaphone or trombone. Actually, this brings me to a good point.

    Go play Bayonetta. All of you. Now look. I know that over-the-top, tongue-in-cheek action games aren't everyone's cup of tea, or heck, video games in general, but at least take a look. Your main opponents in the game are angels, and trust me when I tell you that they are fantastic. They come in every shape and size, from dove-faced myrmidons to fiery dragons and even automobiles. The moral of the story is this, in case Ezekiel and Revelations didn't get it through; celestials, not matter what alignment, can look just as strange or scary as any demon, far beast, or undead.
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  5. - Top - End - #755
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    I wish I could play Bayonetta, but until it comes out on PC that won't really be an option. Although the crazy looking angels was part of the reason I wanted to have Kerubim and Seraphim; just to confuse the viewing audience when they see that the hierarchy goes human with wings, human with wings, human with wings, human with wings, flaming wheel covered with eyes, man-faced lion wearing three crowns stacked on top of each other, flaming snake with four heads, each wearing crowns. I've been toying with the idea of having one of the Powers be one of those really bizzare looking types, but I'm afraid it will end up looking out of place.

    Secondly, I just can't take a archon that is supposed to represent destruction and disaster seriously when it's playing a flugelhorn or sousaphone. I say just stick with trumpets.
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  6. - Top - End - #756
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Quote Originally Posted by Iamyourking View Post
    I wish I could play Bayonetta, but until it comes out on PC that won't really be an option. Although the crazy looking angels was part of the reason I wanted to have Kerubim and Seraphim; just to confuse the viewing audience when they see that the hierarchy goes human with wings, human with wings, human with wings, human with wings, flaming wheel covered with eyes, man-faced lion wearing three crowns stacked on top of each other, flaming snake with four heads, each wearing crowns. I've been toying with the idea of having one of the Powers be one of those really bizzare looking types, but I'm afraid it will end up looking out of place.
    I am pretty sure it would be fine if the Tome Archon of knowledge (fourth layer, I think, I can't recall his name) had an alternate form that was like that. I could totally see him/her doing that, and it would be pretty awesome.
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Erathaol? Why? If I was to give any of the Hebdomad a crazy alternate form it would be Raziel; since it gives him a parallel to Leviathan, acts as an even nastier version of his rage, and his general association with fire fits with their common depictions.
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Quote Originally Posted by Iamyourking View Post
    Erathaol? Why? If I was to give any of the Hebdomad a crazy alternate form it would be Raziel; since it gives him a parallel to Leviathan, acts as an even nastier version of his rage, and his general association with fire fits with their common depictions.
    Well, there is often a connotation between magic and transformation, and I love the idea and imagery of someone who gains so great an understanding of the universe that they physically change form to represent their enlightenment.

    But yeah, Raziel could totally work as well.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lix Lorn View Post
    NOTHING is simple. NO EXCEPTIONS. No, not even that.

  9. - Top - End - #759
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Why not all of them? Asmodeus is a mile-long snake in some versions. The Tomes should be able to match that.

    I'd love to see Raziel as a giant, flaming wheel, personally.

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    Last edited by Eldan; 2011-04-21 at 02:34 AM.
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  10. - Top - End - #760
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    "A tremendous black serpent or legless dragon with broken bat-like
    wings and with flaming, blood-red eyes... as large as a single mortal coil; a single, ebon scale can hold an entire world" (GOH 400) actually. The difference is that 1. He can't actually interact with anyone in that form, 2. This is one of the few things that isn't phrased in third person omniscent so it may not necessarily be true, 3. Asmodeus is an entirely different sort of being to any of the Hebdomad beyond perhaps Zaphkiel; the other Lords are capable of shape-shifting but not to that sort of degree (Mostly just regular humanoids with the exception of Bael, who has no transformation powers, and Leviathan, who can only be the Whale or the Hellspawn), and 4. I feel that there's a bit of a difference between an incomprehensibly huge snake and some of the absolutely crazy things that angels have been described as.

    There might be some room for crazy true forms, but it seems like the implication is that the Hebdomad (Again, with the exception of Zaphkiel) were promoted up the ranks and are essentially just very old and very powerful Throne Archons or High Castes; not truly unique entities. My statement in regards to Raziel wasn't that he actually is a giant four headed snake or a lion wearing three crowns stacked on top of each other or anything like that; just that one of his special powers could be the ability to turn into one. It makes him unique, gives him some thematic ties with his opposing number in Hell while still feeling like an opposite (Leviathan has the 200 foot whale as his true form and the 12 foot fish-devil hybrid as an alternate form for when his true body would be inconvenient), allows us to make a nod to the classic angels without going overboard with all those crazy things, and it makes sense that a being this powerful and this known for rages would have something to make his rage more special than what an epic-level Barbarian would have.
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Anyone got any suggestions on how I can polish the basic statblock of the disjunction archon? I don't wanna' him to be a picture perfect copy of the trumpet, and I what would be recommended as his last feat? Also, is there a rule for calculating spell resistance?
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    That is rather dependant on what you want it to be able to do, but as it is currently better than the standard Trumpet in every way I don't think it being a copy is an issue. Since all its feats are melee based I would suggest making the last feat a caster one or either Ability Focus: Trumpet or Ability Focus: Whatever special ability it is going to have.
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  13. - Top - End - #763
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Right; updated skills. Decided to switch out Handle Animal with Hide and added Spellcraft (seemed fitting as a disjunction archon), but not much else.

    EDIT: Put in the trumpet. Changed sword to warhammer. Whoop for creativity!

    EDIT EDIT: Put in all the spells. Whoo! ... Did I go overboard? It feels like I went overboard. I tried to avoid spam-spells like gate, or infringe on future archons like storm archons. Maybe reel it back. I don't know.
    Last edited by The Tygre; 2011-05-03 at 08:36 PM.
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  14. - Top - End - #764
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    H-hey! Look at me momma! I got a monster under my belt! And an Epic, at that! Kudos to UpperKrust and his CR Calculator. Now someone help my fluff up the breaker of the seven seals here.
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  15. - Top - End - #765
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    First, don't take offense to this; I'm trying to help you.

    I would say that it's too weak to be CR 22, that's the same as a Solar and it's weaker in almost every way; in fact it is fairly evenly matched with a Planetar. It's a powerful caster, but I just don't think the Trumpet is strong enough to warrant an additional 4 CRs, as while being able to cast a
    9th level spell at will is certainly powerful, you miss out on five feet of range compared to casting it normally and Freedom is such a niche spell that I can't imagine being able to cast it as often as you want being worth 4 CRs. Then there's the feats; Ability Focus and Improved Initiative aside, you've got it set up as a melee fighter and it simply isn't very good at it.

    Compare that to a Pit Fiend advanced by two CRs to reach the same power level and you'll see that it has 60 less HP, 4 less initiative, needs an 18 to hit with its best attack and a 20 for everything else, is hit automatically, is behind by 6 damage on a single attack and 50 on a full attack without taking Power Attack into account and needs a 15 or higher to escape being grappled if it gets hit by the tail. Divine Power and your other buffs help, but not enough to make a huge difference as it doesn't have Extend, Quicken, or Persist; making it lose a crucial first turn putting up the buffs.

    I'd say CR 18 would be better as that would keep it below the Throne Archon; and the trumpet and the cripplingly low casting stat probably cancel each other out. One could even make a reasonable argument for 16 or 17, as while having 9th level spells is extremely good the saves are incredibly easy to make and you have next to no spells to begin with. Also, you've got two Domain spells at 7th level and as a general rule one should either not include the Domain spell in the list of Spells Per Level or list it as #+1.

    Overall conclusion: Cut the CR to 17 or 18 and either switch the feats to be more caster friendly or give it something to make it a better fighter. You can't turn a CR 14 creature into a CR 22 creature just by giving it two more HD, 4 more caster levels, +2 or 3 to every stat, and a trumpet effect that while iconic is arguably worse in combat, as being able to paralyze is far more effective than an extremely limited Dispel Magic and being able to cast a 9th level spell that is next to useless in a fight.

    Extra Note: I haven't tried Upper_Krust's CR calculator yet, but I suspect that you may be better off just comparing it to other monsters of the target CR; as if it was what came up with the 22 it probably isn't very accurate. Although, my experience with his work is that he doesn't place a lot of value on class levels, to the point where I believe he calculates them as something like CR=2/3 class levels, so the 18th level Cleric casting can't have that much of an influence.
    Last edited by Iamyourking; 2011-05-05 at 06:23 PM.
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Well, truth be told, I did originally come out with a nineteen as the base product, but that was before I added the trumpet as an item and counted stat boosts... which I kind of winged on estimations, to be honest. So CR 17 then? I'll have to remember to adjust CR based on conversion between UpperKrust and the base system from now on. Or I might just use VT's system for < 20 HD and UK for > 20 HD.
    Last edited by The Tygre; 2011-05-05 at 10:30 PM.
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  17. - Top - End - #767
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Yes, a 17 would probably be best. I'm going to have to take a look at Upper_Krust's system, but if it gave you a 19 before you boosted the stats I'm not sure it would be worth using.
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  18. - Top - End - #768
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    In my defense, I was using an outdated system... like, 2003 outdated.
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Try using Vorpal Tribble's system.

    Not that I have it on my comp, or within easy linking range.

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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    That might be for the best, look for a system that doesn't consider a level 18 Wizard a fair fight for a party of level 12s.
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    What do you think of me increasing all the DCs by five? Nothing big, just something to make the disjunction archon a little more challenging. Also, I was thinking of adding an extra special ability. At first I thought of an attack where a successful hit against a glyph would 'break' it, giving an explosion, but now I'm thinking thematically back to the seven seals as an initiator for the other archons.
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Well, you can't increase all the DCs by 5 without adding another 10 to the applicable casting stat, which will have long reaching consequences. A special ability would be a nice addition towards making it unique, and either of your suggestions would probably work fine. Speaking of which, I've been trying to think of iconic abilities for my Thrones but am having difficulty thinking of things that would be thematic for each layer. So far I've got
    [i]Lunia: Protectors and defenders, the thrones of Lunia are able to, 1/day, create a Wall of Force effect with a total area of 700 square feet; the caster can decide the height and width. It cannot be dispelled short of epic magic, with Disjunction spells having a 0.5% chance per caster level (Rounded down) of working, and lasts as long as the caster wishes; although each Throne can only have one wall up at a time. An invisible curtain that casts Dispel Magic and creates hurricane force winds to enemies hangs up as far as the Throne wishes.
    Mercuria: The martial fury of the Golden Heaven unleashed, the Thrones of Mercuria can cast Maximized Fire Storm 2/day and exude an aura that provides a +4 inspiration bonus to Strength and Constitution to all allies within 70 feet.
    Venya: The nurturing Thrones of Venya can cast Expanded Mass Heal
    3/day and Heal at will.
    But I may need someone more knowledgeable in Planeslore to provide suggestions for the other layers; the Manual of the Planes and BoED didn't have anything I could really use.
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    How would you guys feel about some notes about how Celestia, it layers, and the Hebdomad function philosophically and metaphysically? I'm asking because I don't just want to do a bunch of typing to no avail.

    {EDIT} I apologize...that sounds way passive aggressive and that's not what I intend, I'm just really rusty at forum communication (seriously...two years since I last posted anywhere).

    I have a lot of notes on planar stuff, including Celestia. When Dicefreaks was up and jumping on planar projects I laid down a lot of fluff and structural ideas for tentative Mechanus and Limbo projects: my DF handle is/was Yanagita, though I think most of my posts were eaten by a reformatting awhile back.

    Anyhoo, what I--more politely and accurately--am saying is that I have a lot of top-down ideas about how Celestia works, and how the plane and the Hebdomad, et cetera, all fit together. It may not fit exactly with yours goals regarding canonicity, but maybe it'll provide some ideas (...at very least, for you to react against).
    Last edited by Yanagi; 2011-05-15 at 11:12 AM.

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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Sounds good to me, but we'll have to see it before we determine whether or not we can use it. Eldan and Tygre?
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    I heartily approve, as long as Eldan is okay with it.
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Uhm, why not. I tried to get into Lunia's philosophy a little, but not much. Having someone else's thoughts on it can never be wrong. And I always like to hear other people's crazy theories, if you have any
    "You raise your baton. The glass kettle drums pound out the the overture. Your vision clouds with blood. You wipe it away and continue. The xylophonist's hair bursts into a violet flame, but he continues playing. He's either a consummate professional or very drunk indeed..."

    Quote Originally Posted by Palanan View Post
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Sorry to say this, but I'll have to get back to you in a bit. I just picked up a new contract today that's going to require considerable attention, and will thus not have my usual leisurely graveyard hours to write at length.

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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Work before pleasure, man. Work before pleasure.

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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    Added a couple of unique abilities to the Disjunction, but I need some help polishing the Seal-breaker.
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    Apr 2006
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    Default Re: The Gates of Heaven: Giving Celestia the Dicefreaks Treatment

    The Seal-Breaker seems balanced enough to me, but it could use some clarifications. First, does the fortitude save apply against the dispel effect or just the damage? Second, you say that it's done through a strike; does that mean the Archon has to make a melee attack? In addition, don't you think that that isn't very many SLAs for a CR 17 creature?

    I've reached a massive inpasse with the Throne, especially considering that it's the fourth cleric I've had to make so far and the sheer lack of commentary I'm getting on it. Instead, I'm going to work on Azazel when I get some free time.
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