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    Default The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    I mentioned in the Prestige Swashbuckler I posted the other day I was working on this, and here it is. Long story short, my first D&D3.5 character ever was a Duelist. I've always been a fan of the Fencer archtype. As we all know, the Duelist (and Fighters which was my entry class) suck. Well here I am a few years later knowing better, and I'm bored and decided I wanted to take a crack at making the concept more viable. And here we are.

    The idea was to take the person fighting with a singular weapon and no armor a viable concept. This involved introducing a number of new features, and recasting old ones, and while I feel the end result is still a duelist, it is also far more control oriented, and more competent at making up for its faults (ie better compensation damage wise for giving up what is typically the far superior weapon styles).

    Anyway, here it is, feel free to tear it apart.

    The Duelist


    Spoiler
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    "The edge is for cutting, the point is for killing"

    Duelists come from many backgrounds, from the lowly thief who develops his style from his natural quickness and experience, to the noble who trains as a duelist for sport. Duelists lack the strength typically exhibited by melee fighters, instead relying on their wits and natural quickness to land telling blows with their single weapon.

    Duelists frequently come from the ranks of Fighters and Rogues, though others have been known to be attracted to the style. They develop their abilities to exert control over a single enemy. Many duelists take advantage of this, and excel in competitions and gladiatorial bouts. Higher level duelists find ways to deal with less mundane foes, and are able to prevent spellcasting enemies from slipping away or casting their spells as easily.


    Becoming a Duelist
    Entry Requirements
    Skills: Bluff 5 ranks, Tumble 7 Ranks
    Feats: Dodge, Weapon Finesse, Combat Reflexes
    BAB:+5
    Special: If a character has precision damage, such as sneak attack, as a class feature, their BAB is counted as 1 higher for purposes of qualifying for this class.
    Proficiency: Must be proficient in at least one martial or exotic light or one handed weapon


    Duelist
    Level BAB Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Special Precise Strike
    1st +1 +2 +2 +0 Canny Defense, Duelist's Challenge 1d6
    2nd +2 +3 +3 +0 Improved Reaction, Opportunist 1d6
    3rd +3 +3 +3 +1 Fancy Footwork 2d6
    4th +4 +4 +4 +1 Penetrating Strike, Elaborate Parry 2d6
    5th +5 +4 +4 +1 Improved Opportunist, Cunning Feint 3d6
    6th +6 +5 +5 +1 Melee Weapon Mastery 3d6
    7th +7 +5 +5 +2 Improved Penetrating Strike, Mongoose Reflexes 4d6
    8th +8 +6 +6 +2 Flawless Footwork 4d6
    9th +9 +6 +6 +2 Perfect Opportunist 5d6
    10th +10 +7 +7 +3 Supreme Penetrating Strike 5d6

    Hit Die: d8
    Class Skills (6 + Int modifier per level.)
    Balance (Dex), Bluff (Cha), Diplomacy(Cha), Escape Artist (Dex), Forgery(Int) Gather Information(Cha), Hide(Dex), Intimidate(Cha), Jump (Str), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Perform (Cha), Ride(Dex), Sense Motive (Wis), Sleight of Hand (Dex), Spot (Wis), Tumble (Dex), and Use Rope (Dex).

    Canny Defense (Ex): When not wearing armor or using a shield, a duelist adds 2 points of Intelligence bonus (if any) per duelist class level to her Dexterity bonus to modify Armor Class while wielding a melee weapon, up to a maximum of your intelligence modifier. This ability may be used with light armor, but the bonus is restricted to 1 point of intelligence bonus per duelist class level while doing so. If a duelist is caught flat-footed or otherwise denied her Dexterity bonus, she also loses this bonus.

    Precise Strike (Ex): A Duelist gains the ability to strike precisely with his blows, increasing damage caused by the attack by 1d6. When making a precise strike, a duelist cannot attack with a weapon in her other hand or use a shield.

    A duelist’s precise strike only works against living creatures with discernible anatomies. Any creature that is immune to critical hits is not vulnerable to a precise strike, and any item or ability that protects a creature from critical hits also protects a creature from a precise strike. For every two levels of duelist possessed, this bonus increases by +1d6, to a maximum of 5d6 at 9th level.

    Duelist's Challenge (Ex): A duelist is able to single out asingle opponent within his reach, and through use of his skill influence his opponent's actions, distracting the opponent from harming his allies, and restricting their options in combat. The enemy targetted by this ability takes a penalty equal to your intelligence modifier, to a maximum of your class level to any attack that does not include the duelist as a target.

    The duelist may have only a single enemy affected by this ability at any time, but may switch the target of this ability on his round once per turn as a free action. The challenge lasts as long as the enemy can see the target. The duelist may choose to end his challenge at any time.

    At 3rd level, the target's movement ability is restricted. If the target starts his turn within reach of the duelist its movement speed is reduced by 50%.

    At 6th level, the target of this ability is treated as being affected by a dimensional anchor while within reach of the duelist.

    Improved Reaction (Ex): Starting at 2nd level, when not wearing armor or using a shield, a duelist gains a bonus to initiative equal to half their intelligence modifier (round down). This bonus stacks with improved initiative.

    Opportunist (Ex): A Duelist is a master of finding opportunities to place extra strikes. Starting at second level, when the target of your duelist's challenge ability makes an attack action and misses, it provokes an attack of opportunity from the duelist. To take advantage of the Opportunist ability, a duelist cannot attack with a weapon in her other hand or use a shield.

    Improved Opportunist-At 5th level, when a foe provokes an attack of opportunity a duelist may initiate a disarm, trip, or bullrush maneuver with a bonus equal to your intelligence modifier on the opposed check. This maneuver counts against the number of attacks of opportunity allowed in one round, but doesn’t provoke an attack of opportunity or generate any negative consequences on a failed attempt. The foe is treated as one size category smaller than usual (to a minimum of medium size) when determining their bonus to resist this attempt. Additionally any concentration check invoked by an attack of opportunity from you has its DC increased by your duelist level plus intelligence modifier.

    Perfect Opportunist-As of 9th level Casting defensively, or using a Magic Item provokes an attack of opportunity. Additionally, when using Opportunist to Bull Rush, Trip, or Disarm an opponent, the Duelist treats the opponent as 2 size categories smaller than normal (to a minimum of small size), when determining their bonus to resist the attempt.

    Fancy Footwork (Ex): A duelist is constantly on the move, and watching a pair of duelists fight is almost like watching a dance. Starting at 3rd level, When not wearing armor or using a shield, a Duelist gains the benefit of Uncanny Dodge if he doesn't already have it, and may take an extra 5 foot step per round. If the Duelist already has the Uncanny Dodge ability from another class, he automatically gains Improved Uncanny Dodge instead.

    Flawless Footwork-A Duelist at 8th level advances this ability further. He additionally gains ability to take a 5 foot step as an immediate action. When taking a 5 foot step, the Duelist may make a DC30 tumble check to move up to half his base movement speed, instead of the normal 5 foot limit.

    Elaborate Parry (Ex): At 4th level and higher, if a duelist chooses to fight defensively or use total defense in melee combat while wearing no armor, she gains an additional +1 dodge bonus to AC for each level of duelist she has. A duelist cannot benefit from this ability when attacking with a weapon in her off hand or while wearing armor or using a shield. The Duelist may choose to use this ability while wearing Light Armor, but gains only 1/3 of his class level (round up) as a bonus while doing so.

    Penetrating Strike (Ex): Starting from 4th level, the duelist gains the ability to pierce even the hardest of defenses, allowing him to pierce one point of damage reduction per level of Duelist he possesses, and ignores up to Light Fortification. A duelist cannot take advantage of this ability and attack with a weapon in his other hand or use a shield.

    Improved Penetrating Strike At 7th level, the Duelist is able to ignore up to Medium Fortification, and his precision damage becomes more effective. On a confirmed critical, the Duelist maximizes all precision damage. For every crit multiplier of the Duelist's weapon beyond x2, the Duelist gains half his normal precision dice to damage, in addition to the maximized damage. (for example, with 4d6 precision dice, the Duelist deals 24 damage on a crit with a x2 weapon, 24+2d6 with a x3 weapon, or 24+4d6 with a x4 weapon). This effect does apply to all precision bonus dice, including Sneak Attack and Skirmish dice, as well as precise strike.

    Supreme Penetrating Strike: At 10th level, the Duelist can ignore all crit immunity, and is capable of critically striking any enemy. This also allows him to apply precision damage against these enemies. Additionally, the crit multiplier of your weapon is increased by 1. (For example if your weapon normally crits for x3 damage, it now crits for x4 damage.)

    Cunning Feint (Ex): At 5th level, the Duelist gains the ability to feint as a swift action. When using Bluff for feinting, the Duelist adds his intelligence modifier as a bonus to the bluff check.

    Melee Weapon Mastery (Ex): The duelist gains the benefit of Melee Weapon Mastery (Piercing) as a bonus feat at 6th level, even if he does not meet the prerequisites of this feat. The duelist is considered as having Weapon Focus and Weapon Specialization in a piercing weapon of the duelist's choice for the purpose of prerequisites, even if he does not currently have those feats. (This does not grant the benefits of Weapon Focus or Weapon Specialization, but merely allows the Duelist to be treated as if he had them for meeting prerequisites for feats or other prestige classes). If the Duelist already has this feat, he may choose a different feat from the Fighter bonus feat list in its place.

    Mongoose Reflexes (Ex): Starting at 7th level, you may make attacks of opportunity as normal, with a -4 penalty to attack rolls, while using the total defense option. If you have the combat expertise feat, you are able to increase this penalty in order to use combat expertise in conjunction with total defense.

    Additionally, any attacks of opportunity made while fighting defensively, or while taking a total defense action, are made with a bonus equal to your intelligence modifier.
    Last edited by Seerow; 2014-04-04 at 01:50 PM.
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Nothing at all?
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    First Glance: Looks interesting, perfect Swashbuckler PRC


    Canny Defense (Ex): When not wearing armor or using a shield, a duelist adds upto 2 points of Intelligence bonus (if any) per duelist class level to her Dexterity bonus to modify Armor Class while wielding a melee weapon (to a maximum bonus equal to her Intelligence modifier). If a duelist is caught flat-footed or otherwise denied her Dexterity bonus, she also loses this bonus.

    I'll examine it in more detail later.
    Doug

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    Moonshae Mysteries IC / OOC / Central Map / west rooms map / east rooms map
    Moonshae Tales IC / OOC / Map
    Map of Area

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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by only1doug View Post
    First Glance: Looks interesting, perfect Swashbuckler PRC


    Canny Defense (Ex): When not wearing armor or using a shield, a duelist adds upto 2 points of Intelligence bonus (if any) per duelist class level to her Dexterity bonus to modify Armor Class while wielding a melee weapon (to a maximum bonus equal to her Intelligence modifier). If a duelist is caught flat-footed or otherwise denied her Dexterity bonus, she also loses this bonus.

    I'll examine it in more detail later.
    I kind of assumed that would be a given, since you are applying the intelligence modifier bonus, I was basically just trying to convey that at duelist 1 you get a maximum of +2, at 2 you get a max of +4, etc. I suppose I can add that in as further clarification.
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    I kind of assumed that would be a given, since you are applying the intelligence modifier bonus, I was basically just trying to convey that at duelist 1 you get a maximum of +2, at 2 you get a max of +4, etc. I suppose I can add that in as further clarification.
    you are right that it should be a given, unfortunately some people prefer to deliberately misread...


    I like the class, it looks like it will work well.

    the 4 feat entry tax will result in little diversity amongst characters entering the class at L6. (Dodge being a pre-req for Mobility).
    Doug

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    Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    I'm concerned that you keep the only arguable broken part of the original duelist, which is the +10 AC at 10th level when fighting defensively.

    I really don't get the dim anchor part, and as (Ex) that strikes me as wildly out of place. Can't you have a cleric dim anchor the guy that is gonna get away? Once you start putting in counters to counters as class abilities you are metagaming class design! It also doesn't make since. Since when is Zorro or the Three Musketeers a portable 4th level passive spell effect with (Ex)?

    I really like the buff to precise strike. I have a guy who will go duelist in the game I'm in. I'm just going to have him run the Paizo duelist (http://paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd/p...s/duelist.html). They buffed it to a flat +10 at 10th level. Certainly the 3.5 one is too low, given what you are passing up by using a singleton combat technique.


    Penetrating Strike is delicious, 10/10. Improved Penetrating Strike I don't know about, because I've always allowed Power Attack as it seems a very core mechanic for some weapons to be left out. Your top one is also very good.

    Riposte seems very misnamed.

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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Thanks for the feedback.

    Quote Originally Posted by cfalcon View Post
    I'm concerned that you keep the only arguable broken part of the original duelist, which is the +10 AC at 10th level when fighting defensively.
    I never saw it as a broken part. Remember, the duelist gives up all armor, and is already on a 2 stat split for stats, so a Monk belt isn't particularly attractive even if you do interpret it as giving wis to AC (some DMs do not). Aside from that you're paying about 4x more for your armor than other people are, and have a lower base, so the increased defensive fighting is good. Hell, even the monk gets a bonus to AC in addition to his wisdom. In addition to get that bonus, you're taking a -4 penalty to hit (though you can negate that with a decent int mod at level 7 on attacks of opportunity, you still take the penalty on your round)

    Can you show an example where a character fighting defensively as a duelist is significantly higher than your average person with the same gear?

    I really don't get the dim anchor part, and as (Ex) that strikes me as wildly out of place. Can't you have a cleric dim anchor the guy that is gonna get away? Once you start putting in counters to counters as class abilities you are metagaming class design! It also doesn't make since. Since when is Zorro or the Three Musketeers a portable 4th level passive spell effect with (Ex)?
    The way I saw it was as an extention of Duelist's Challenge reducing movement, and Improved Opportunist making it harder to cast spells and SU abilities. Basically the duelist while he is within reach of the opponent and harassing him, he isn't able to teleport away. I used the dimensional anchor name to get that effect across without a lot of exposition.

    I really like the buff to precise strike. I have a guy who will go duelist in the game I'm in. I'm just going to have him run the Paizo duelist (http://paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd/p...s/duelist.html). They buffed it to a flat +10 at 10th level. Certainly the 3.5 one is too low, given what you are passing up by using a singleton combat technique.
    Yeah, the core 3.5 precise strike is pitiful, 2d6 out of 10 levels when you can get 5d6 in the same 10 levels as a Rogue, without giving up an offhand weapon seems bad. This was increased to be a closer match, while Penetrating Strike is intended to make up the difference from not having that second weapon.

    It's worth noting a flat +10 is only effectively 3d6, though it does have the advantage of being multiplied on a crit, which is nice. They probably average out close to the same.

    As an aside what do you figure the chances are of me convincing you to try this out instead of the Paizo version?

    Penetrating Strike is delicious, 10/10. Improved Penetrating Strike I don't know about, because I've always allowed Power Attack as it seems a very core mechanic for some weapons to be left out. Your top one is also very good.
    If you allow Power Attacking with 2:1 with all weapons, you can leave out Improved Penetrating Strike with no harm done. After all, you get Riposte at the same level, so you still won't have any dead levels, and the power level is the same if the option is already available.

    Riposte seems very misnamed.
    Riposte may have been better for the first level of opportunist, but I feel it still fits here. The way I see it, Riposte is the counterstroke after parrying an attack. By the time you get Riposte you have Opportunist, so when you fight defensively and make an attack of opportunity, while some of it may go towards people moving, it will frequently be in response to somebody trying to attack you.

    I agree it's a stretch, but I've never been particularly good at names. I'm open to rename suggestions for this or any other ability (Duelist's Challenge in particular bugs me)






    On a unrelated note, I am considering updating the requirements of the class to consider having precision damage dice as +1 BAB for purposes of entering, so you could go say Rogue1/Fighter 4 and enter, or Rogue 3/Fighter2 (rogue is 2 BAB, Fighter is 2 BAB, +1 BAB for precision damage). The idea is to not make Rogue, or other precision based classes necessary, but it makes them not delay the entry as they currently do due to lower BAB progression. Any thoughts on that?

    On another unrelated note, I did mention in the first post that I also made a prestige class version of the swashbuckler, that is intended to mesh with this Duelist (though isn't required). If you are interested in the duelist you may also be interested in this
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    I'm somewhat disappointed that all these skills prevent use of an off-hand weapon. Surely a dueling dagger could be used alongside the rapier.

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    Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Monbodo View Post
    I'm somewhat disappointed that all these skills prevent use of an off-hand weapon. Surely a dueling dagger could be used alongside the rapier.
    The explicit point of the duelist is to be the class you go to for singleton combat. There are several other options for dual wield in the game. It would be nice if you had some advantages to one handed and some to dual wield in the same class, but then everyone would critique the class as confused or something.

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow
    I never saw it as a broken part. Remember, the duelist gives up all armor,
    Apologies. The Pathfinder duelist retains functionality in light armor. I assumed yours did as well, quite erroneously. I retract my critique of the Super Duper Parry.

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow
    The way I saw it was as an extention of Duelist's Challenge reducing movement,
    No, the challenge reducing movement makes sense- you are harrying your foe constantly, and in the time it takes them to get away from you, they don't have the ability to move at their full rate- in other words, your constant threat of giving them a cool new lung-piercing that all the ruffians are wearing these days, takes a great deal of their attention.

    Then we go from that to "quickened dim door doesn't work for no reason".

    The ability is just put in there to be some kind of thing because it's in vogue to limit casters, and it greatly reduces the power level of demons and devils versus any party with a duelist. If your melee character is threating enough that the enemy caster has to dim door or teleport out of town, then your melee character is correct- if he's manifesting anti-magic abilities by pointing and shouting in an extraordinary fashion, then I don't really know what's going on. Once you turn off the caster's ability to cast, then you have upped the "arms race" to some ludicrous degree.

    If you want this guy to be threatening, then probably you should have something that ups the DC of concentration checks to cast defensively, or allows him a chance to lock the opponent in place, or check out the "step-up" feat from Pathfinder- a good version of which you have in flawless footwork. Some mix of these should make an enemy caster regret standing next to you more than normally- but I'd argue that if he's dim dooring away, he already has had all the rapier he can eat.

    I'd also point out that a move action followed by a cast normally will ignore this ability anyway.

    Also as a warning- if you want a prestige class to use a certain weapon, you should flat out say that. If you grant a general ability (such as mastery of piercing weapons), understand that this applies to rapiers, but also to exotic things that are better than rapiers, as well as the spiked chain. Granted, using the spiked chain turns off some of this guys abilities, but generally in designing prestige classes you have to worry about this stuff. Of course, if you are ok with all that, then never mind. But if I were you, I'd make a list of weapons that this works with.

    Yeah, the core 3.5 precise strike is pitiful, 2d6 out of 10 levels when you can get 5d6 in the same 10 levels as a Rogue
    The rogue has some limitations that the duelist does not, including a bad hit die and a worse BAB and flanking requirements. I still agree that 2d6 is just too damned low, however. I'm not sure which is better, but they do appear to be comparable. Given that you would expect the duelist to be using a +crit weapon, it's nice if it can crit.

    Rename Riposte? Hrm, my suggestion would be something emphasizing the accurate and precise nature of the attack, without the name also implying that someone has to attack you first. Instant and accurate. Hrm. Mongoose Reflexes. Precise Strike. Relentless Opponent. Improved Attack of Opportunity :P ... Cunning Strikes. Press the Advantage. No Recourse. Unforgiving Opposition.

    That's all I got for now, sorry.



    As for what would make me want to use it instead... I'm not quite sure. I would obviously replace the dim anchor with something else that hinders the foe. Three five foot steps in a round gives this guy a lot of advantages over other melee as well, but I didn't really critique that because you probably have other stuff that makes that ok in your games (like you probably allow lion totem and other pouncy-things). Overall I like the duelist in light armor more than no armor as well, though both have appeal. Basically, I'll forward the guy who's going to run the duelist to this thread, and see what he thinks. As written, it's too strong for my games, but it's not way out of line or anything. The 3.5 duelist is of course, in line for a giant stack of buffs- I just think that Pathfinder's is pretty much on the money for what I'm looking for (it's actually rather weak for a Pathfinder class, but since I'm running a somewhat restricted 3.5 it's about right).

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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Monbodo View Post
    I'm somewhat disappointed that all these skills prevent use of an off-hand weapon. Surely a dueling dagger could be used alongside the rapier.
    It prevents the use of an offhand weapon as an attack. I explicitly avoided forbidding holding a weapon in the offhand, so that you could have a parrying dagger as well (I'm pretty sure there's one in some splat book that gives a bonus to defenses while you hold it, if not you can at least have a weapon with the defensive property), as long as you used it for that purpose and not attacking, it shouldn't interfere with any class abilities.


    I'm a bit limited on time right now, but I'll respond in depth to you cfalcon a little bit later.
    Last edited by Seerow; 2011-04-28 at 07:09 PM.
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Apologies. The Pathfinder duelist retains functionality in light armor. I assumed yours did as well, quite erroneously. I retract my critique of the Super Duper Parry.
    Ah yeah, if you thought it kept light armor then I can understand the complaint. +10 Armor is still pretty high compared to light armor (even enchanted), or compared to the Monk's armor bonus, but on the other hand taking the -4 penalty to hit I think makes up for that. I'm open to argument if anyone feels that isn't really the case.

    No, the challenge reducing movement makes sense- you are harrying your foe constantly, and in the time it takes them to get away from you, they don't have the ability to move at their full rate- in other words, your constant threat of giving them a cool new lung-piercing that all the ruffians are wearing these days, takes a great deal of their attention.

    Then we go from that to "quickened dim door doesn't work for no reason".
    Well, it may be from a different ability, but before you get to "quickened dimension door doesn't work", you get:

    Improved Opportunist-As of 5th level Casting defensively, or using a Magic Item provokes an attack of opportunity.

    So we have the precedent of using magical abilities being hard while within reach of the duelist, and it's pretty hard to run away mundanely, I felt the logical progression was to make it especially hard using magic to get away from the duelist. The entire point is the duelist doesn't have the best mobility (yes extra 5 foot steps are amazing, but he doesn't have pouce, fight, teleportation, increased move speed, or any other cool movement forms), so his method is forcing the enemy to stay next to him.

    Yes, it may be a bit more targetted at high magic creatures like demons and such with su at will teleports, but on the other hand, it's a relatively high level ability, coming at minimum 4 levels after casters have started having easy access to teleportation spells, and it makes sense that the duelist would have some way to deal with it.

    If you want this guy to be threatening, then probably you should have something that ups the DC of concentration checks to cast defensively, or allows him a chance to lock the opponent in place, or check out the "step-up" feat from Pathfinder- a good version of which you have in flawless footwork. Some mix of these should make an enemy caster regret standing next to you more than normally- but I'd argue that if he's dim dooring away, he already has had all the rapier he can eat.

    I'd also point out that a move action followed by a cast normally will ignore this ability anyway.
    Most of what you suggest is already in there. As you mention, the fancy footwork abilities gives a bit of off turn mobility, and Perfect Opportunist does increase the DC of concentration checks invoked by any attack of opportunity, and Improved Opportunist makes defensive casting still provoke, so if a caster is adjacent to you, and tries to cast, they will invoke an attack, and if you hit, that DC will be increased.

    Maybe the dimensional anchor is a bit over the top on top of that, I'm just painfully aware of how easy it is to optimize something like a concentration check to point that any reasonable DC is going to be shrugged off easily. I could see replacing that with something to restrict basic movement further, but I'm still not convinced stopping teleportation effects is a bad thing. As you point out, if someone tries hard enough, they can still run away and dimension door, or whatever, but making it so they can't do it while adjacent to you makes them waste more actions doing it, and maintaining an action advantage is important, especially when you have very few ways to take advantage of Swift/Immediate actions (which is one weakness I feel is still left with this class, very limited access to the action economy, but a lot of passive benefits to what it can do)

    Also as a warning- if you want a prestige class to use a certain weapon, you should flat out say that. If you grant a general ability (such as mastery of piercing weapons), understand that this applies to rapiers, but also to exotic things that are better than rapiers, as well as the spiked chain. Granted, using the spiked chain turns off some of this guys abilities, but generally in designing prestige classes you have to worry about this stuff. Of course, if you are ok with all that, then never mind. But if I were you, I'd make a list of weapons that this works with.
    Honestly, if someone wants to make a Duelist with a spiked chain, that's their choice... but the class really doesn't synergize with it. Sure, there's a lot of attack of opportunity stuff here, and a lot of attack of opportunity stuff with spiked chains... the problem is the spiked chain is a two handed weapon, so opportunist, elaborate parry, penetrating strike, or precise strike won't work. That's most of the stronger class features, and the ones a chain tripper would be most interested in, do I don't think that particular example has any real problems.

    The reason I don't want to make an exact list, is because I know there will be items that are added later, or I'm not aware of now, that would be fitting. I figure any piercing weapon that can be held in a single hand and be finessed is fine for a duelist, and any other piercing weapon is losing access to enough class features that it's probably fine regardless.

    The rogue has some limitations that the duelist does not, including a bad hit die and a worse BAB and flanking requirements. I still agree that 2d6 is just too damned low, however. I'm not sure which is better, but they do appear to be comparable. Given that you would expect the duelist to be using a +crit weapon, it's nice if it can crit.
    Well let's crunch some numbers. On a high crit weapon you're looking at threatening a crit on a 15-20 (assuming you have keen/imp crit), assuming you hit on a 8, that means the 5d6 gets you 17.5 damage 65% of the time, for 11.375 average bonus damage.

    10 damage gets you 10 damage 40% of the time. 25% of the time you threaten a crit, which gets confirmed 65% of the time, so 16.25% of the time is a crit, with the other 48.75% of the time as a normal hit, and 35% miss. 4.875+2.64 = 7.515 average damage. So the 5d6 is actually about 50% better. (Worth noting, 2d6 is 7 average damage 65% of the time for 4.5 average damage per round, making the +10 flat damage is almost exactly dead between the two options)


    I'm personally still inclined to lean towards the stronger end of things because you're giving up a lot of benefits of bonus strength damage and stronger weapon dice, or extra attacks per round.

    Rename Riposte? Hrm, my suggestion would be something emphasizing the accurate and precise nature of the attack, without the name also implying that someone has to attack you first. Instant and accurate. Hrm. Mongoose Reflexes. Precise Strike. Relentless Opponent. Improved Attack of Opportunity :P ... Cunning Strikes. Press the Advantage. No Recourse. Unforgiving Opposition.

    That's all I got for now, sorry.
    I think I've got enough "strike" abilities in here, so I want to avoid those unless I make it a improvement of one of the other abilities, but none really stand out as a good place to put it. Mongoose Reflexes, Press the Advantage, and Unforgiving Opposition all seem good. Right now I'm leaning towards Mongoose Reflexes or some variation of that. Thanks for the input on that though, like I said I really am terrible with names.

    As for what would make me want to use it instead... I'm not quite sure. I would obviously replace the dim anchor with something else that hinders the foe. Three five foot steps in a round gives this guy a lot of advantages over other melee as well, but I didn't really critique that because you probably have other stuff that makes that ok in your games (like you probably allow lion totem and other pouncy-things). Overall I like the duelist in light armor more than no armor as well, though both have appeal.
    Yeah, the extra 5 foot steps are big, but my opinion is any melee that doesn't have maneuvers or some similar method of getting more out of a standard attack should have some form of increased mobility. That's a part of my general design philosophy, simply because without it, they can't compete. I'd actually consider the extra 5 foot steps, while big, less effective than other forms of mobility (such as pounce, and especially such as more supernatural abilities like flight and teleport), which is why there is such a high focus on control in the class.

    The 3.5 duelist is of course, in line for a giant stack of buffs- I just think that Pathfinder's is pretty much on the money for what I'm looking for (it's actually rather weak for a Pathfinder class, but since I'm running a somewhat restricted 3.5 it's about right).
    Honestly, Pathfinder did a terrible job with melee. They advertise themselves as fixing imbalances, but in many cases from what I've seen they became worse. Most of the problem spells still exist in the game, and they didn't do nearly enough to buff the melee classes to compensate. If you play an extremely low op campaign, where wizards do nothing but toss fireballs, and Fighters are considered very strong, the Paizo duelist may be fine.

    Outside of that it suffers the same problems as the core Duelist: it lacks any real role that somebody else couldn't do better than them without all the drawbacks of the class. A prestige class should make you stronger, or at least be power neutral, not make you lose damage compared to not taking the class and using a different fighting style.
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Uncanny Dodge: This is required for the class to actually work. Possibly add it as a prereq? I currently see Rogue 4/Fighter 2 or Barbarian 2/Swash 3 as being obvious lead-ins to the duelist. Warblade would obviously be a good fit as well, but hard to see someone choosing this PrC over some of the fine ToB Duelist PrCs if they went that route.

    Duelist Challenge: Does it require an action? Am I limited to only one challenge? When does the challenge end?

    Perfect Opportunist: Not a fan. I like the concentration bit just fine, but not buying into the fact that every attack even successful attack generates a riposte. How about something like:

    Clever Opportunist: At 9th level, when a foe provokes an attack of opportunity a duelist may initiate a disarm, trip, or bullrush maneuver with a bonus equal to your intelligence modifier on the opposed check. This maneuver counts against the number of attacks of opportunity allowed in one round, but doesn’t provoke an attack of opportunity or generate any negative consequences on a failed attempt. Additionally any concentration check invoked by an attack of opportunity from you has its DC increased by your duelist level plus intelligence modifier.

    Penetrating Strike: I like the ignoring DR and Crit immunity parts just fine, but not buying into the power attack by a different name bit. Most fighter types rely on PA for their damage; I think the duelist should do his business in a different manner. With the greater Penetrating strike bit you’re a better power attacker than the greatsword barbarian.

    Maybe give the class Improved Critical and as a capstone double the Crit Multiplier. This will still up the damage generated, but help keep the class a bit distinct.

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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Uncanny Dodge: This is required for the class to actually work. Possibly add it as a prereq? I currently see Rogue 4/Fighter 2 or Barbarian 2/Swash 3 as being obvious lead-ins to the duelist. Warblade would obviously be a good fit as well, but hard to see someone choosing this PrC over some of the fine ToB Duelist PrCs if they went that route.
    Okay, thanks for confirming what I was thinking. I do think having it as a prerequisite makes the entry a little too restrictive though. I think slipping it in at Duelist 3, where currently all you get is Fancy Footwork, would work, though.

    Duelist Challenge: Does it require an action? Am I limited to only one challenge? When does the challenge end?
    It is intended to be a free action to designate, once a turn, can have only one, and lasts until the enemy is dead or out of LoS. I guess my description didnt actually cover any of those things though, so good catch, I will update accordingly.

    Perfect Opportunist: Not a fan. I like the concentration bit just fine, but not buying into the fact that every attack even successful attack generates a riposte. How about something like:
    Well, the same thing comes from a feat... Robilar's Gambit if I recall correctly.

    Clever Opportunist: At 9th level, when a foe provokes an attack of opportunity a duelist may initiate a disarm, trip, or bullrush maneuver with a bonus equal to your intelligence modifier on the opposed check. This maneuver counts against the number of attacks of opportunity allowed in one round, but doesn’t provoke an attack of opportunity or generate any negative consequences on a failed attempt. Additionally any concentration check invoked by an attack of opportunity from you has its DC increased by your duelist level plus intelligence modifier.
    Problem I have with that is Trip, Disarm, and Bullrush coming from a (typically) medium creature using a one handed or light weapon with low strength is going to have really low checks on those maneuvers, even with the int bonus added to it. Maybe making it +Duelist Level + Int Mod on those as well could make that workable, though it'd still be pretty weak against most monstrous opponents.

    Penetrating Strike: I like the ignoring DR and Crit immunity parts just fine, but not buying into the power attack by a different name bit. Most fighter types rely on PA for their damage; I think the duelist should do his business in a different manner. With the greater Penetrating strike bit you’re a better power attacker than the greatsword barbarian.

    Maybe give the class Improved Critical and as a capstone double the Crit Multiplier. This will still up the damage generated, but help keep the class a bit distinct.
    Fair enough, my thought was though that instead of gaining damage through raw strength, the duelist could essentially make a called shot, taking a penalty to hit to gain increased damage. And yes, the increased damage at max level exceeds that of a level 1 greatsword barbarian, because that greatsword barbarian still has advantages in terms of damage that the Duelist does not, namely the 1.5xstr to damage. And of course once you look at somethign past 1st level you likely have more Power Attack multipliers which brings the Barbarian's far above the Duelist's.

    Now, if we wanted to go a different route, personally I wouldn't use Improved Critical as a bonus feat (they can pick it up themselves if they want, or better just get a keen weapon), but I do like the idea of improving the crit multiplier. This also helps emphasize the synergy between the Swashbuckler and Duelist (my prestige swashbuckler linked earlier has a increase to crit threat range as its capstone).

    I was however thinking, as another way to up damage, would it be out of line to add on the bonus from the Paizo swashbuckler? Say instead of the power attack Penetrating Strike, you get Precise Strike upgraded to be xd6+duelist level bonus to damage.

    Other possible option: Go the 4e route and make Precision damage dice maximize on a crit. On a crit with a x3 multiplier, maximize and roll 50% of the dice (round up), and on a crit with a x4 multiplier maximize plus roll the normal dice.

    So say you have your 2d6 sneak attack + 5d6 precise strike, you crit with a rapier, instead of 7d6 (average 24.5 damage), you just add 42 damage. Adding on the increased multiplier to make it x3, you instead get 42+4d6 damage (average 56), and if you have a x4 multiplier, you get 42+7d6 (average 66.5 damage). This makes precise strike more potent, and emphasizes crits as a major damage dealer.
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Updates currently reflected in the first post:
    -Renamed Riposte to Mongoose Reflexes
    -Added Uncanny Dodge, as an addition to Fancy Footwork. It fits with the ability conceptually, and it fell on the same level I was planning on granting uncanny dodge anyway.
    -Altered Flawless Footwork a bit. Took away the third 5 foot step, instead granted the ability to move further with a 5 foot step with a successful DC 30 tumble check.
    -Updated prereqs to make having any precision damage count as +1 bab, so going rogue doesn't force a late entry.

    Updates still in consideration:
    -Removing the Dimensional Anchor from Challenge, instead relying on Opportunist to stop enemies from teleporting out of reach.
    -Altering Improved Penetrating Strike to some other form of damage increase as opposed to using power attack mechanics.
    -Altering Perfect Opportunist to a different mechanic rather than getting an AoO on a successful hit.
    -Allowing use of Light Armor with class abilities, possibly via an ACF, in exchange restrict elaborate parry to 1/3 Duelist Level (round down), and possibly also reducing the maximum bonus you can get from intelligence down to 1/level instead of 2/level.
    -Considering some change to make cunning feint more useful. Probably won't, given getting at least a couple sneak attack dice is likely while coming into the PrC
    Last edited by Seerow; 2011-05-02 at 02:24 PM.
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    Problem I have with that is Trip, Disarm, and Bullrush coming from a (typically) medium creature using a one handed or light weapon with low strength is going to have really low checks on those maneuvers, even with the int bonus added to it. Maybe making it +Duelist Level + Int Mod on those as well could make that workable, though it'd still be pretty weak against most monstrous opponents.
    I know this ability isn't going to work well against a number of foes, which is why you can never justify spending the feats required to be decent at them. That said these type of abilities are core to the archetype in literature and would love to see them get some support. Playing a duelist with out the ability to disarm, just isn't a duelist at all. If it were up to me I would use my ability (or something similar) at the level 5 and move your current 5th level ability to level 9.

    A sneaky way to improve Trip/Disarm/Bullrush is give the Duelist the ability to treat all foes as Medium. This would negate most monsters huge advantages will keeping him from being too good against humanoids.

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    Fair enough, my thought was though that instead of gaining damage through raw strength, the duelist could essentially make a called shot, taking a penalty to hit to gain increased damage. And yes, the increased damage at max level exceeds that of a level 1 greatsword barbarian, because that greatsword barbarian still has advantages in terms of damage that the Duelist does not, namely the 1.5xstr to damage. And of course once you look at somethign past 1st level you likely have more Power Attack multipliers which brings the Barbarian's far above the Duelist's.
    I understand where you're getting your flavor justification from, but don't forget that this is already a full BAB class getting precision damage. And while it's certainly possible to boost PA multipliers, they are almost exclusively limited to charge attacks. Finally while I know PA is a good mechanical representation of "called shot" I still desire for this class to be mechanically different from the Two-handed super brutes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    Other possible option: Go the 4e route and make Precision damage dice maximize on a crit.
    I like this much better. A simple Maximize Precision damage on a critical at 7th and double critical multiplier at 10th should work well.

    Mongoose Reflexes: Don't forget to edit the table.
    Cunning Feint: Fine as is, nothing else really needed
    Light Armor: Could go either way on this issue. If you do change it I would make it 1/level for INT bonus and 1/2 level for elaborate parry (-4 for +4 to +7).

    Currently most duelists will still wear armor until 3rd level since their armor bonus will be better than canny defense bonus and they don't lose any other class features. Then from level 4 on Elaborate parry is so good (+8 up to +12) that that the majority of the time they will be using it (particularly since opportunist requires a miss to work until level 9).

    Using the light armor changes should flatten AC curve. Allowing them to slowly improve their AC and force them to make a harder decision on whether or not to use elaborate parry.

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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by cooperflood View Post
    I know this ability isn't going to work well against a number of foes, which is why you can never justify spending the feats required to be decent at them. That said these type of abilities are core to the archetype in literature and would love to see them get some support. Playing a duelist with out the ability to disarm, just isn't a duelist at all. If it were up to me I would use my ability (or something similar) at the level 5 and move your current 5th level ability to level 9.
    Disarm, yes. Tripping and Bullrushing are however less iconic. Bullrushing in particular seems counterintuitive since you want to keep the enemy adjacent to you. (Though it could synergize with the PHB2 feat that lets you knock someone down as a part of a bullrush, which you qualify for here thanks to the melee weapon specialization)

    A sneaky way to improve Trip/Disarm/Bullrush is give the Duelist the ability to treat all foes as Medium. This would negate most monsters huge advantages will keeping him from being too good against humanoids.
    Hrm, maybe. On the other hand that makes the duelist better at tripping/disarming/bullrushing than just about anything else.

    Mongoose Reflexes: Don't forget to edit the table.
    Fixed.

    Cunning Feint: Fine as is, nothing else really needed
    I was just worried that it doesn't synergize with much else in the class.
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    Disarm, yes. Tripping and Bullrushing are however less iconic. Bullrushing in particular seems counterintuitive since you want to keep the enemy adjacent to you. (Though it could synergize with the PHB2 feat that lets you knock someone down as a part of a bullrush, which you qualify for here thanks to the melee weapon specialization)
    Bullrushing is an iconic duelist ability. A duelist doesn't physically push or shove his foe back. He forces him to move in the direction he wants with a clever use of his blade. When bullrushing you always end in a square adjacent to the foe. Tripping is less iconic, but still useful and doesn't feel out of place to me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    Hrm, maybe. On the other hand that makes the duelist better at tripping/disarming/bullrushing than just about anything else.
    Personally I think just adding Int modifier is plenty good, my proposal was just an alternative to your suggestion of Level+Int.

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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Okay, you convinced me, but I am doing a slight twist on it:

    -The Bullrush/Trip/Disarm bonus comes in at level 5 as you suggested, with a bonus just to int mod. Rather than completely negating enemy size modifiers, instead he reduces enemy's effective size modifier by 1, to a minimum of Medium. At level 9 this reduces the modifier by 2, to a minimum of small. Given the exponential scaling of those modifiers, this helps level the playing field a lot, but not quite to the "not effective at all" level.

    -Penetrating Strike changed as discussed, grants an increased crit multiplier, and increases precision dice damage on a crit. Still considering adding a bonus to precise strike to make it a bit more potent, how much it's needed depends largely on optimization level. Just going with pure duelist, it's probably needed, but if you're picking up say that dex to damage feat from ToB, or Int to damage from swashbuckler, or both, it's probably not really necessary. So I guess the question there is if I should rely on outside influences that aren't guaranteed to help the class keep up, or should the class be more independent, and simply that much stronger with the synergy from the other sources.

    -Changed Improved Reaction so it requires no armor at all. Then changed Canny Defense and Elaborate Parry to work with light armor (but restricted to 1 per level for canny defense and 1/3 level round up for Elaborate Parry). This should reinforce being armorless as the default option, but allow light armor for those who want cheaper access to armor/armor upgrades. Light Armor may be better when you first enter the class, but armorless should pull well ahead as you get deeper into it, and better at what you do.



    I think that's all the changes. For right now, I'm still inclined to keep the dimensional anchor effect. If someone wants to teleport away, let them use the extra actions to move away first. If more people feel it really doesn't fit the flavor of the class at all, I'll remove it, but personally I think my justification that they are able to interrupt a target within reach from teleporting is fine.
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    I like the class a lot, but it feels odd that it gets so many bonuses for a high Intelligence and none for Dexterity or Strength. I guess they'd need Dex for Weapon Finesse, but it's a physical fighter, no matter how cunning, and it feels wrong that their skill becomes independent of physical ability once they enter the class.

    Other nitpicks:

    Requiring precision damage as a class feature precludes swordsages with Assassin's Stance from qualifying. If that's not your intention, you might want to change the wording.

    Opportunist should probably specify that the opponent must be in melee with the duelist to provoke AoEs. The way it's written, the duelist gets an AoO from across the room. And I guess the whole "within reach" part of the Challenge feature is written to allow spiked chain users, but it could use clearer wording.

    Otherwise, great class!

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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by Treblain View Post
    I like the class a lot, but it feels odd that it gets so many bonuses for a high Intelligence and none for Dexterity or Strength. I guess they'd need Dex for Weapon Finesse, but it's a physical fighter, no matter how cunning, and it feels wrong that their skill becomes independent of physical ability once they enter the class.
    They still use Dex to hit, and for Armor (the int to AC adds to it), and for initiative. The int bonus applies to Armor, half to initiative, and to a few other special things, such as your penalty from challenge, or the bonus for taking AoOs, but overall, Dexterity is still going to be your more important stat. The class adds int to a lot of things, primarily because there are no int bonuses in melee combat as a default, whereas dexterity by default is a particularly valuable stat that already does basically everything you could want except damage (which it can do with the Shadow Blade feat).

    Now I could see the argument for making it dex bonus instead of int for cunning feint, but pretty much everything else I think applying int is doing what it should.

    Other nitpicks:

    Requiring precision damage as a class feature precludes swordsages with Assassin's Stance from qualifying. If that's not your intention, you might want to change the wording.
    The Swordsage could still qualify, it'd just be a later entry. I'd rather not have someone qualifying early with a stance that can be swapped out or picked up with a feat.

    Opportunist should probably specify that the opponent must be in melee with the duelist to provoke AoEs. The way it's written, the duelist gets an AoO from across the room. And I guess the whole "within reach" part of the Challenge feature is written to allow spiked chain users, but it could use clearer wording.

    Otherwise, great class!
    The Within reach part of challenge is to allow for things that grant extra reach, such as becoming large. I don't think there's a lot of one handed reach weapons out there, but if there are any, yes it would function. Opportunist explicitly does not work if you attack with a weapon in your offhand, I would consider attacking with a weapon held in two hands as using the offhand, though I suppose I could clarify that.

    There are several features that would work with a spiked chain and the like, but the majority of those (ie the control and damage features) are not features that a spiked chain user would actually want to use. It's a case of you can do it, but it's hardly optimal.
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Mini-bump.

    I quite like the class - Duelist-like characters have always been close to my heart, so much so that I crafted an encounter with a Duelist that is specifically designed to be a one-on-one fight (literally, the big guy with the sword in your party is challenged by a duelist to a one-on-one fight to resolve a matter of honor). I also like that Sneak Attack damage counts toward meeting the prerequisites of Duelist, because it always seemed to me like Rogues were meant to be Duelists, especially in Pathfinder, where Finesse Rogue is given as a Rogue talent. I also love the Duelist's Challenge, which seems like the point of a Duelist, but is usually pawned off on some other class (Cavaliers get it instead in Pathfinder--what gives?).

    I like how Uncanny Dodge was worked into Fancy Footwork's text, but almost wish that it would be placed on its own as a standalone ability--if for no reason better than to grant Improved Uncanny Dodge to characters who already gain the benefit of Uncanny Dodge through levels in another class (Rogues, Scouts and even Barbarians all get Uncanny Dodge before they make it to Duelist, and get no secondary benefit from Fancy Footwork as such). Alternately, some amendment to the text to account for that (as is seen in the SRD text for Rogue and Barbarian already) might be nice.

    I would also make Combat Reflexes a reward for Duelist as opposed to a requirement; doing so would allow characters that aren't Humans or Fighters to PrC into Duelist before level 10 (a race/class combo that offers no bonus feats won't get this until level 9, even if they meet all the other requirements by level 5). A Fighter can still PrC into this at level 6, as can a Human Rogue, but it's not too steep for other characters. It also gives Duelist more of an incentive, though I understand if there are balance issues that arise from that.

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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    I quite like the class - Duelist-like characters have always been close to my heart, so much so that I crafted an encounter with a Duelist that is specifically designed to be a one-on-one fight (literally, the big guy with the sword in your party is challenged by a duelist to a one-on-one fight to resolve a matter of honor). I also like that Sneak Attack damage counts toward meeting the prerequisites of Duelist, because it always seemed to me like Rogues were meant to be Duelists, especially in Pathfinder, where Finesse Rogue is given as a Rogue talent. I also love the Duelist's Challenge, which seems like the point of a Duelist, but is usually pawned off on some other class (Cavaliers get it instead in Pathfinder--what gives?).
    Glad to hear that you like it, especially coming from someone who enjoys the archetype. I was worried some people might find the challenge a bit jarring. Speaking of, how do you feel about the dimensional anchor within reach portion?

    I like how Uncanny Dodge was worked into Fancy Footwork's text, but almost wish that it would be placed on its own as a standalone ability--if for no reason better than to grant Improved Uncanny Dodge to characters who already gain the benefit of Uncanny Dodge through levels in another class (Rogues, Scouts and even Barbarians all get Uncanny Dodge before they make it to Duelist, and get no secondary benefit from Fancy Footwork as such). Alternately, some amendment to the text to account for that (as is seen in the SRD text for Rogue and Barbarian already) might be nice.
    I could put it into a separate ability and allow the scaling, but really, I'm not sold on the Duelist actually needing improved uncanny dodge. It's one of those things that would be nice, but not particularly necessary. On the other hand, Uncanny Dodge is one of those things, as someone else put it, is necessary for the class to function. It wasn't put in to be an extra power boost so much as to ensure a duelist doesn't get splattered because he didn't have it, if that makes any sense.

    I would also make Combat Reflexes a reward for Duelist as opposed to a requirement; doing so would allow characters that aren't Humans or Fighters to PrC into Duelist before level 10 (a race/class combo that offers no bonus feats won't get this until level 9, even if they meet all the other requirements by level 5). A Fighter can still PrC into this at level 6, as can a Human Rogue, but it's not too steep for other characters. It also gives Duelist more of an incentive, though I understand if there are balance issues that arise from that.
    I can see your concern with a non-fighter having trouble entering the class... what if instead of making combat reflexes a bonus feat and taking it off the prereqs, I bumped the prereqs down to requiring dodge instead of Mobility.

    That way a non-human non-fighter could go 1) Weapon Finesse 3) Combat Reflexes 6) Dodge, and qualify at 6. There's nothing in the class that really requires mobility, it is merely fitting, on the other hand, combat reflexes is a pretty central part of making the class work, and I'm leery of handing out further power increases, even something as small as an extra bonus feat.
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  23. - Top - End - #23
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    Glad to hear that you like it, especially coming from someone who enjoys the archetype. I was worried some people might find the challenge a bit jarring. Speaking of, how do you feel about the dimensional anchor within reach portion?
    You might have to define "within reach". From what I've seen throughout the rest of the text of the class, it means "within striking distance", or the five-foot area around the Duelist that it can swing at. That doesn't necessarily stop somebody from moving their full movement (even if that "full movement" is technically half movement), and then stepping through the Dimension Door, even if they take an attack of opportunity in the process. It doesn't even stop them from taking a five-foot step before doing so (which doesn't even provoke an attack of opportunity). Thus, the evil Wizard your Duelist managed to (against all odds) shatter through the defenses and perilous abilities of isn't barred from escaping... He just has to step out of the way first.

    If "within reach" means "within a single movement range of the target", then the target can't escape the "within reach" range unless they have more than double the Duelist's movement, because the Duelist's Challenge cuts movement in half. I think this is more what you're going for.

    Frankly, I like it, but I guess my understanding isn't clear on when Dimensional Anchor is applied, since "within range" is relative.

    I could put it into a separate ability and allow the scaling, but really, I'm not sold on the Duelist actually needing improved uncanny dodge. It's one of those things that would be nice, but not particularly necessary. On the other hand, Uncanny Dodge is one of those things, as someone else put it, is necessary for the class to function. It wasn't put in to be an extra power boost so much as to ensure a duelist doesn't get splattered because he didn't have it, if that makes any sense.
    While I can see this, and I wouldn't necessarily suggest giving Improved Uncanny Dodge to the PrC outright, a Rog4/Bar2 gets Improved Uncanny Dodge just from getting Uncanny Dodge from two different sources, whereas a Rog4/Duel4... Doesn't. Instead, they get an Uncanny Dodge they can't use with their armor.

    I think it just makes sense from the perspective of a character that already has Uncanny Dodge applying their already intuitive knowledge to the training that they are receiving as they continue to progress, as base class combinations already do. It makes sense from a progression standpoint and is consistent with what Uncanny Dodge already does, and while I guess this isn't technically Uncanny Dodge, it does give some benefit to a dedicated duelist choosing Rogue over Fighter, since Fighter gets Uncanny Dodge from this anyway.

    I can see your concern with a non-fighter having trouble entering the class... what if instead of making combat reflexes a bonus feat and taking it off the prereqs, I bumped the prereqs down to requiring dodge instead of Mobility.

    That way a non-human non-fighter could go 1) Weapon Finesse 3) Combat Reflexes 6) Dodge, and qualify at 6. There's nothing in the class that really requires mobility, it is merely fitting, on the other hand, combat reflexes is a pretty central part of making the class work, and I'm leery of handing out further power increases, even something as small as an extra bonus feat.
    To be perfectly honest, I never liked Mobility. In melee combat, I always make it a point not to provoke (instead using five-foot steps or Acrobatics/Tumble checks to get away), so Mobility is more or less a dump feat. I would love if it were gone.

  24. - Top - End - #24
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    You might have to define "within reach". From what I've seen throughout the rest of the text of the class, it means "within striking distance", or the five-foot area around the Duelist that it can swing at. That doesn't necessarily stop somebody from moving their full movement (even if that "full movement" is technically half movement), and then stepping through the Dimension Door, even if they take an attack of opportunity in the process. It doesn't even stop them from taking a five-foot step before doing so (which doesn't even provoke an attack of opportunity). Thus, the evil Wizard your Duelist managed to (against all odds) shatter through the defenses and perilous abilities of isn't barred from escaping... He just has to step out of the way first.

    If "within reach" means "within a single movement range of the target", then the target can't escape the "within reach" range unless they have more than double the Duelist's movement, because the Duelist's Challenge cuts movement in half. I think this is more what you're going for.

    Frankly, I like it, but I guess my understanding isn't clear on when Dimensional Anchor is applied, since "within range" is relative.
    Okay, I guess I could clarify "within reach" as "within your threatened area"


    And to respond to the Wizard 5 foot stepping and walking away at half his movement speed, remember the duelist can immediate action take a 5 foot step, and can make a tumble check to make that 5 foot step actually half your base movement speed. From there, you only need to have a little bit of extra reach, or a slightly higher ground movement speed than the Wizard, to be able to continue threatening him after he moves away. Which then forces him to have to spend a second move action AND be casting a quickened teleport spell to get away, or deal with casting from inside your reach and dealing with the penalties of that. So either the wizard escapes, at the cost of a massive action disadvantage, or the wizard is stuck. Either way, you did your job, though you may have trouble catching said wizard again without outside help.

    While I can see this, and I wouldn't necessarily suggest giving Improved Uncanny Dodge to the PrC outright, a Rog4/Bar2 gets Improved Uncanny Dodge just from getting Uncanny Dodge from two different sources, whereas a Rog4/Duel4... Doesn't. Instead, they get an Uncanny Dodge they can't use with their armor.

    I think it just makes sense from the perspective of a character that already has Uncanny Dodge applying their already intuitive knowledge to the training that they are receiving as they continue to progress, as base class combinations already do. It makes sense from a progression standpoint and is consistent with what Uncanny Dodge already does, and while I guess this isn't technically Uncanny Dodge, it does give some benefit to a dedicated duelist choosing Rogue over Fighter, since Fighter gets Uncanny Dodge from this anyway.
    I guess I can see the logic here. I'll think about it, but I'll probably end up updating the class unless I can think of a reason not to.
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  25. - Top - End - #25
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    Okay, I guess I could clarify "within reach" as "within your threatened area"


    And to respond to the Wizard 5 foot stepping and walking away at half his movement speed, remember the duelist can immediate action take a 5 foot step, and can make a tumble check to make that 5 foot step actually half your base movement speed. From there, you only need to have a little bit of extra reach, or a slightly higher ground movement speed than the Wizard, to be able to continue threatening him after he moves away. Which then forces him to have to spend a second move action AND be casting a quickened teleport spell to get away, or deal with casting from inside your reach and dealing with the penalties of that. So either the wizard escapes, at the cost of a massive action disadvantage, or the wizard is stuck. Either way, you did your job, though you may have trouble catching said wizard again without outside help.
    I guess I can understand that. I wasn't really thinking about how Flawless Footwork would interact with that.

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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    Updates still in consideration:
    -Removing the Dimensional Anchor from Challenge, instead relying on Opportunist to stop enemies from teleporting out of reach.
    Dooooooooonnnn't!

    -Allowing use of Light Armor with class abilities, possibly via an ACF, in exchange restrict elaborate parry to 1/3 Duelist Level (round down), and possibly also reducing the maximum bonus you can get from intelligence down to 1/level instead of 2/level.
    I would go further with this than you already have. As it is, a Duelist in light armor is just strictly worse than a Duelist in no armor. The light armor wearer has a bit more AC but loses many of the Duelists coolest abilities. Make it a more even trade.
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    I would go further with this than you already have. As it is, a Duelist in light armor is just strictly worse than a Duelist in no armor. The light armor wearer has a bit more AC but loses many of the Duelists coolest abilities. Make it a more even trade.
    Well, my thought here (after I made that post, when I made the actual updates) was that a light armor could be something you graduate out of. A starting duelist uses light armor because it's simply better. You get more AC out of it, and it doesn't restrict you horribly. As you gain levels in duelist, you eventually grow out of it, as your other bonuses and abilities outscale it.


    That said, what abilities don't work in light armor aside from Fancy Footwork and the initiative bonus? For example, penetrating strike and challenge don't have any armor restrictions. I could maybe give a reduced initiative bonus to a duelist with light armor, but I can't think of any way to reduce the benefit of fancy footwork for someone in light armor while keeping it meaningful. Or would you suggest just making that fully available, and the only difference between light armor and no armor being the AC and initiative numbers?


    edit:
    Updates:
    -No longer requires Mobility as a prerequisite.
    -Elaborate Parry now explicitly requires no armor for the full bonus (upon rereading I realized I hadn't specified this, so it could have been interpreted as someone could take this class and wear heavy armor and still get the full +level AC bonus, which was not intended)
    Last edited by Seerow; 2011-05-08 at 11:08 PM.
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  28. - Top - End - #28
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    That said, what abilities don't work in light armor aside from Fancy Footwork and the initiative bonus? For example, penetrating strike and challenge don't have any armor restrictions. I could maybe give a reduced initiative bonus to a duelist with light armor, but I can't think of any way to reduce the benefit of fancy footwork for someone in light armor while keeping it meaningful. Or would you suggest just making that fully available, and the only difference between light armor and no armor being the AC and initiative numbers?
    Oh, yes, I think I must have been thinking of simply fancy footwork. While some form of "limited fancy footwork" would be great, I can understand the difficulty in implementing something like that.

    I understand the idea of "graduating out" of light armor use, and actually now that you put it that way, I more or less have no problems with the class.

    Easily one of the best, if not the best Duelist rewrites I've seen. Nicely done.
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  29. - Top - End - #29
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Did another read through and I can say I'm completely satisfied with this class. Probably the best martial PrC I have seen on this board in some time. Kudos.

  30. - Top - End - #30
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    Default Re: The Duelist-D&D3.5 Prestige Class[PEACH]

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    Mongoose Reflexes (Ex): Starting at 7th level, any attacks of opportunity made while fighting defensively, or while taking a total defense action, are made with a bonus equal to your intelligence modifier.
    I'm not sure if you intended to allow this, but currently, attacks of opportunity cannot be made while taking the total defense action.
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    ...magical trumps mundane so often that mundane really needs to be able to give magic a good kick in the junk now and then.

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