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    herrhauptmann's Avatar

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    Jun 2007

    Default Level drain and other Weapon Effects in Epic 3.5

    A while back I made a character for Tower of Deadly Evil, and since he was going to have low damage per hit, I was finding ways to increase the number of hits and AOOs he'd make a round. Also, to stack a variety of penalties onto his weapon for hits.

    Well, that character never got going. But I'm going to try something similar for an epic game, and I'm wondering how many of them will still be useful.
    Name Book Cost Effect Save
    Wounding DMG +2 1 Con damage None
    MarrowCrushing BoVD +3 1 Con Damage None
    Enfeebling BoED +1 crit, 1d6+2 Temp Str Damage None
    Paralyzing BoED +2 Paralyzed up to 10 rounds Will 17
    Roaring BoED +3 Shaken, 2d6 sonic Will 22
    Nervewrack Dung 105pg21 +1 On Crit Many effects1d4 rounds None
    Subjugating Heroes of Battle +2 Shaken/Frightened 5 rounds Will 20
    Doom Burst Mini +1 Crit, shaken 5minutes None
    Paralytic Burst Mini +2 Crit, Hold Monster None
    Weakening Shining South +3 1 Str Damage None
    Lifedrinker weapon DMG/SRD 38k 2 negative levels, 1 negative level on user Fort 16, next day.
    Sudden Stunning DMG2 2000 Swift action, 1d4+1 rounds Ref: 10+ 1/2 level+User Cha mod
    CurseSpewing BoVD +1 On hit:-4 morale to attack, saves, ability checks, skill checks Will DC15
    Souldrinking Epic 428K (I think) On hit. 2d4 negative levels Fort 25 next day
    Spellblade PGtF 6000 When targeted with 1 spell, you catch it with weapon. Can let it drain off, or redirect on your turn. None

    Character is a lockdown gish type (my personal homebrew that's been approved).
    So he'll frequently be using Improved Invisibility+Spectral Skirmisher (PHB2). Defensive Rebuke (ToB maneuver). Doublehit(Mini?) And Thicket of Blades and Rapid Counter (maybe).
    Not that it really matters for this question, but here's my combat style:
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    Defensive Rebuke, if I attack someone and they don't attack me, I get an AOO.
    Thicket of Blades. If they move within my reach, I get an AOO.
    Spectral Skirmisher. If they attack my square, I get an AOO. If I hit with the AOO, they know which square I'm in. Some trade offs, oh well.
    Doublehit. When I wield 2 weapons and make an AOO, use both at the cost of a single AOO.

    Two weapon fighting with spinning swords (secrets of sarlona) so I'll have reach.
    Double hit will let me use one AOO attempt to hit with both weapons.
    Dragon Magazine has a few feats that let me use secondary and tertiary attacks on an AOO, at the cost of an additional AOO attempt.
    **6th level fighter with those feats, could get an attack at +6, and an attack at +1 for a single provoking attempt. If he's got doublehit, he should make 4 attacks for just 2 attempts.


    So, how well should each of these abilities work in a level 25 game? (Not sure just how optimized the game will be, but DM doesn't want full casters to own and leave melee carrying the gear.)
    Lifedrinker weapons (with soulfire armor so I don't get level drained myself).
    Sudden stunning.
    Curse Spewing.
    Wounding.
    Roaring.
    I'm trying to avoid the ones that activate on a crit, or that have both a DC and a high cost. (Sudden stunning has a DC, but it's low cost. It's worth it for the 5% chance of success, unless every enemy is reliably immune to stunning by that level)


    Secondary question:
    I'm used to playing with non-epic items to dissect their cost, but epic items get a little wonky with their pricing formulas.
    The Life drinker for instance, is a +1 greataxe that deals 2 negative levels per hit and costs 40320gold.
    MW great axe is 320.
    A +1 weapon is 2000.
    That means the lifedrinker is 38k itself.

    What would be the cost of the Soul-drinker so I can attach it to a different weapon?
    Ordinarily it's a +5 Bastard Sword that costs 478,335 gold and does 2d4 negative levels.
    +5 is 50k.
    MW sword is 335gold.
    So the soul drinking part should be 428000 gold. Is that right?
    Last edited by herrhauptmann; 2014-12-13 at 07:50 PM.

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    herrhauptmann's Avatar

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    Default Re: Level drain and other Weapon Effects in Epic 3.5

    Bump from page 2.

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    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    Biffoniacus_Furiou's Avatar

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    Default Re: Level drain and other Weapon Effects in Epic 3.5

    Most of those weapon properties aren't even worth getting. Here are a few suggestions for items and for epic levels in general and also for an arcane gish at this level of play:

    1. Note that as per the sidebar on page 282 of the DMG, you can make an item cost double for it to not take up an item space, or combine two items that take the same spot for +50% cost tot he second one.

    2. Get something from every category on this list that your spells can't duplicate, preferably a deluxe item of each. Plus a Necklace of Adaptation. Yes you do need all of those, either from items or from spells that you have active 24/7. I'd get the Cowl of Warding, Soulfire armor, Hathran Mask of True Seeing, and a helm that grants a continuous Favor of the Martyr. Everything else can be duplicated with spells if you follow my advice below. You should also get Boots of Temporal Acceleration, at xY cost for xY uses/day.

    3. For an arcane gish, you should definitely try to include four levels of Incantatrix so you can use Cooperative Metamagic and Metamagic Effect for your buffs. You can use Persistent Wraithstrike plus two-handed Power Attack for respectable damage. Use Persistent Thunderlance with Greater Magic Weapon. Get Arcane Disciple for the Destiny domain in Races of Destiny, and have Persistent Choose Destiny active. Persistent Ray Deflection. You can even get Persistent Divine Power via Arcane Disciple. Use Persistent Draconic Polymorph, even if you don't want to take another creature's form you can use it to turn into yourself (permissible due to Alter Self as a base) to get an unnamed +8 Str bonus. Persistent: Displacement, Greater Mirror Image, Swift Fly, Swift Expeditious Retreat, (Reach Spell) Greater Dimension Door, Shield, Magic Circle against Evil, Foresight, etc.

    4. Try to include three levels of Cleric of Mystra, so you can take the Initiate of Mystra feat from Player's Guide to Faerun and ignore antimagic fields and dead magic areas. You can cast your own Persistent Antimagic Field and all of your buffs and items will still work but opponents' supernatural abilities (most damage reduction) won't function if they're within its area.

    5. Try to include two Rogue levels for the Spell Reflection ACF in Complete Mage, so when a ranged touch effect automatically misses you due to Persistent Ray Deflection, you can send it back to the source. This is entirely optional and should only be used if you've got some levels to spare.

    6. Have an absolutely safe location, such as by using Genesis to create your own pocket plane which is entirely enclosed by Permanencied Mage's Private Sanctum and a Hallow spell that places a Dimensional Anchor on anyone but your party members who enters. This should prevent anyone from detecting the plane, and anyone who has a high enough knowledge check to know of it would know that once they enter there is no escape. From this plane you cast Astral Projection on yourself and your party, copies of your characters appear in the astral plane. The copy of you can then Plane Shift the copies of your party to wherever your current adventure takes you. Anything that would otherwise kill a character simply kills that copy and he wakes up in the safe pocket plane unharmed. None of your character will ever risk permanent damage, status effects, or death, none of their items can be destroyed, there is absolutely no risk short of encountering gith who could cut the silver cord. Each time Astral Projection is cast new copies of the characters are created, thus undoing anything that happened to the previous set of copies. This level of cheese is almost necessary to succeed in the epic levels, no joke.
    Last edited by Biffoniacus_Furiou; 2011-10-11 at 04:09 AM.

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    Ogre in the Playground
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    May 2010

    Default Re: Level drain and other Weapon Effects in Epic 3.5

    Biffoniacus_Furiou: That was quite informative.. And pretty well worded. But I believe that is the wrong link.. Unless you meant for him to have an animal companion which seems odd given the information listed after the link..

    herrhauptmann: The ToDE was a fun time.. It proved to be entertaining almost every time I ran it. I'd say you have a good idea of what to drop on a weapon if that's the way you want to go.. The only thing I say that seems wonky is Cursespewing.. The DC is trivial at that level. The negative levels are handy although, I hope you kill whatever you hit. Well two other things actually. Roaring will likely be saved against majority of the time, just so you know.. And I myself love Wounding, it is fun, even more so with negative levels.. But even pre-epic, most things you fight have immunity to ability damage. So, Wounding will likely only work half the time..
    DnD Me
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    Neutral Evil Human Sorcerer/Rogue (1st/1st Level)
    Ability Scores:
    Strength-13
    Dexterity-12
    Constitution-12
    Intelligence-15
    Wisdom-11
    Charisma-13

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    herrhauptmann's Avatar

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    Default Re: Level drain and other Weapon Effects in Epic 3.5

    Well, DM nixed the AOO-centric character, so that's half the reason for the weapon effects now gone. "Too tedious in a pbp game." He's also stated not to do lots of level dips, so probably no Cleric3/Rogue2 dips. And if I do dip, I have to have a really good reason (backstory-wise) for those dips.

    Biffoniacus_Furiou:
    Guess I should show you the base class I'm working with. Ta da! (Earth or Air version)
    It used to be a little more powerful, but apparently 6th level spells on a full bab is 'overpowered,' even here on the forums. So it's been nerfed a bit so that someone will actually let me play it. Even now it's a little iffy.
    It's divine, so no incantatrix, unless I rebuild the character idea to be primarily an incantatrix with Mancer as a significant dip.
    Unfortunately, your suggestions for genesis and such, while important, also become impossible.
    Didn't realize quite how many awesome items there were for the head and face slots (that always sounds silly). Looks like a lot of stacking will be in order (also planning a custom item of synesthete).

    mrcarter11:
    I know the cursespewing DC is pretty minuscule, but was hoping that the 5% chance would be significant enough when I'm hitting someone with it 10 times a round. Oh well.

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    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    Biffoniacus_Furiou's Avatar

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    Dec 2004

    Default Re: Level drain and other Weapon Effects in Epic 3.5

    Why not just go with a standard arcane gish then? Fighter 2/ Martial Wizard 4/ Spellsword 1/ Abjurant Champion 5/ Incantatrix 4/ Eldritch Knight 4, while your DM doesn't like a lot of dips every bit of that is single-purposed and dipping is extremely necessary for a successful gish. Mystra is a goddess of magic, so it would make sense that a powerful spellcaster would grow attached to and wish to serve her (or at this level, he may have met her once and fallen in love). For a level 25 character, I'd get two Paragnostic Apostle levels (no reason to take more levels in that than the number of abilities you want, Spatial Awareness and Mind Over Matter) and then go Cloistered Cleric 3, and all future levels should be toward Cloistered Cleric or Contemplative or even Dweomerkeeper. Use the Chaos Shuffle to switch one of your nonepic feats to Initiate of Mystra, and get Knowledge Devotion instead of the Knowledge domain.

    Another thing I forgot to mention about the Astral Projection trick, your characters' copies use their own daily spells and other limited use abilities, and charges from their own limited charge items. If your copies run out of spells and other resources, you can dismiss Astral Projection and cast a new one, and the new copies are back to the full allotment of daily spells/abilities and charged items.

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    Troll in the Playground
     
    herrhauptmann's Avatar

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    Default Re: Level drain and other Weapon Effects in Epic 3.5

    Ooh, that's a neat trick with astral projection, and one I didn't realize worked. Thanks

    Might do a gish, currently waiting on answers to a few other questions I asked last night/this morning. Though I'm thinking of my Sublime Arcanamach build. In spells/day he's a little worse off than the Sorcadin gish, but he's got some nice/interesting abilities the Sorcadin doesn't have.
    Bard1/ Pal of Freedom 2/Full bab Class(es) 4/ Suel4/Sublime 2/AC5/Sacred Exorcist 2 takes me to level 20. (Still have 16bab and 9th level spells though)

    I'm pretty sure that if I take mageslayer before I take AC5, I'd then spend a while operating at an even lower CL than normal, but martial arcanist should then reset my CL to my BAB.
    Wondering also how that works at level 21+, when I'd be taking Sacred Exorcist, would CL then be BAB+CL gained after AC5? (Caster level now increasing faster than BAB+Epic attack bonus)

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