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    Default [3.5] Improving and Scaling Core Mundane Feats (WIP)

    I am rewriting some of the core feats, primarily those for mundane fighters and skill monkeys, to be better and properly scale with level. I have several reasons for doing this.

    First, I want to eliminate some of the "trap" options that exist in Core, such as Weapon Focus or Toughness, that are considered "standard" feats, and which in most cases are not worth a feat slot, usually because the bonus(es) it gives are so small that they rarely matter except at low levels. I want to correct this by 1) improving the base ability of the feat and/or 2) causing the power of the feat to increase as the character levels. As much as possible, I wish for all of these feats to be useful through all levels.

    Second, I want to make the Fighter obsolete. I love the Tome of Battle and encourage any player wanting to make a melee character to consider using that book. As good as the Tome of Battle is, however, a fighter dip is still often considered simply because of how many feats are required to make some archetypes work (such as two-weapon fighting or archery). Therefore I combine feat trees into a single feat that scales with character level, base attack bonus, or some other metric.

    Third, I want to increase the power of mundane combat, even mundane combat by Tier 3s. I like playing and running mid- to high-op games, but many of my players are not willing or able to optimize to that degree, so by increasing the power of the feats, they can look at their options, choose the most obvious one, and still perform well.

    Finally, I want to make a major change with a minimum of work and confusion. I could rewrite every class; I feel that rewriting feats will be more efficient. I could change to a different system that does it better; I (and my groups) are unlikely to find the time to learn a new system soon and I like the base mechanics of D&D.

    As an example of what I'm trying to do, I hold up my favorite core feat for mundanes: Power Attack. The feat adds another dimension to melee combat by introducing a non-trivial choice to be made. It works well with all kinds of attacks (except ranged; more on that later), including maneuvers, and synergizes well with Improved Trip. It scales well, allowing it to remain relevant through most of the game. I would like for every feat I rewrite to be close to Power Attack in power.

    Below, I will post my current versions of the feats that I have rewritten, most with commentary. Any comments, constructive criticisms, or questions are welcome. Also feel free to point out any and all typos (however, note that I am using American spelling if it comes up). If you like what you see, feel free to use it in your game, I just ask that you let me know how it goes, as my ability to playtest all of these is limited.

    I will only post a few feats at a time so that I can get feedback on those few before moving one to some more. I hope that the discussion can be more focused this way.

    So, without further ado, here are the current versions of the revised core feats:

    Additional Feat Rules
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    For any feat that requires you to make a choice but does not provide a retraining option in the text of the feat (as Weapon Focus does), you may select a new choice every time you gain a new character level. You may make new choices for as many feats as you like, and these new choices do not count against retraining limits (as described in the Player's Handbook II). You may choose any option that you qualify for as of your new level (i.e., you don't have to choose an option you qualified for when you originally took the feat).

    Every feat described here counts as every feat in its "Replaces" line for the purpose of qualifying for prestige classes, feats, or anything else.


    Feat List (NEW!)
    This is the listof general feats from the Player's Handbook. The notation used here is as follows: [good] means the feat, as found in the Player's Handbook or the SRD, is good enough to use as written and will not be addressed here; [bad] means the feat may need to be updated, but currently doesn't have a rewrite in this thread; [WIP] means a version of the feat is in the thread but is missing some vital parts; and [redone] means the feat needed a rewrite and has received one in this thread, but is still open for review.

    Note: When in doubt, or when I have not thought about a particular mundane fead, I have given it the [bad] label to essentially "mark it for review." I am certain that some of the feats marked [bad] I will change to [good] at some point. Feel free to make an argument for why a particular feat is good enough as written.

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    General Feats
    Acrobatic [WIP]
    Agile [WIP]
    Alertness [WIP]
    Animal Affinity [WIP]
    Armor Proficiency (Light) [redone]
    Armor Proficiency (Medium) [redone]
    Armor Proficiency (Heavy) [redone]
    Athletic [WIP]
    Augment Summoning [redone]
    Blind-Fight [bad]
    Combat Casting [bad]
    Combat Expertise [bad]
    Improved Disarm [bad]
    Improved Feint [bad]
    Improved Trip [good]
    Whirlwind Attack [bad]
    Combat Reflexes [good]
    Deceitful [WIP]
    Deft Hands [WIP]
    Diligent [WIP]
    Dodge [redone]
    Mobility [redone]
    Spring Attack [bad]
    Endurance [bad]
    Diehard [bad]
    Eschew Materials [good]
    Exotic Weapon Proficiency [good]
    Extra Turning [good]
    Great Fortitude [redone]
    Improved Counterspell [good]
    Improved Critical [redone]
    Improved Familiar [good]
    Improved Initiative [redone]
    Improved Turning [good]
    Improved Unarmed Strike [good]
    Deflect Arrows [bad]
    Improved Grapple [bad]
    Snatch Arrows [bad]
    Stunning Fist [bad]
    Investigator [WIP]
    Iron Will [redone]
    Lightning Reflexes [redone]
    Magical Aptitude [WIP]
    Martial Weapon Proficiency [good]
    Mounted Combat [bad]
    Mounted Archery [bad]
    Ride-By Attack [bad]
    Spirited Charge [bad]
    Trample [bad]
    Natural Spell [good]
    Negotiator [WIP]
    Nimble Fingers [WIP]
    Persuasive [WIP]
    Point Blank Shot [redone]
    Far Shot [redone]
    Precise Shot [redone]
    Improved Precise Shot [redone]
    Rapid Shot [redone]
    Manyshot [bad]
    Shot On The Run [bad]
    Power Attack [good]
    Cleave [redone]
    Great Cleave [redone]
    Improved Bull Rush [bad]
    Improved Overrun [bad]
    Improved Sunder [bad]
    Quick Draw [bad]
    Rapid Reload [redone]
    Run [bad]
    Self-Sufficient [WIP]
    Shield Proficiency [redone]
    Improved Shield Bash [bad]
    Tower Shield Proficiency [redone]
    Simple Weapon Proficiency [good]
    Skill Focus [redone]
    Spell Focus [good]
    Greater Spell Focus [good]
    Spell Mastery [good]
    Spell Penetration [good]
    Greater Spell Penetration [good]
    Stealthy [WIP]
    Toughness [redone]
    Track [bad]
    Two-Weapon Fighting [redone]
    Two-Weapon Defense [redone]
    Improved Two-Weapon Fighting [redone]
    Greater Two-Weapon Fighting [redone]
    Weapon Finesse [redone]
    Weapon Focus [redone]
    Weapon Specialization [redone]
    Greater Weapon Focus [redone]
    Greater Weapon Specialization [redone]



    Weapons
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    Improved Critical (Adjusted)
    You are deadly with your favored weapon.
    Prerequisite: Proficient with selected weapon, base attack bonus +8
    Benefit: Choose a type of weapon, such as longspear or spiked chain, that you are familiar with. For every 4 points of BAB you have, select one of the following benefits (to a maximum of 5 benefits at BAB +20). You may select the same benefit more than once; if you choose to do so, the benefits stack as indicated.
    • Your treat range when wielding your selected weapon is doubled; each additional time you select this benefit, your threat range when wielding the weapon improves by 1.
    • Your critical multiplier when wielding your selected weapon improves by 1 for each time you select this benefit.
    • Once per day per time you select this benefit, while wielding your selected weapon you can, as a free action, automatically confirm a threatened critical without having to roll.
    • When you score a critical hit with your selected weapon your target must make a DC 12 + your Con modifier Fortitude save or be stunned for 1 round; each additional time you select this benefit, increase the DC of the Fortitude save by 2. This benefit only affects bludgeoning weapons.
    • When you score a critical hit with your selected weapon your target must make a DC 12 + your Dex modifier Fortitude save or take a -4 penalty to Strength for 1 minute; each additional time you select this benefit, increase the DC of the Fortitude save by 2. This benefit only affects piercing weapons.
    • When you score a critical hit with your selected weapon your target must make a DC 12 + your Str modifier Reflex save or take a -4 penalty to Dexterity for 1 minute; each additional time you select this benefit, increase the DC of the Reflex save by 2. This benefit only affects slashing weapons.

    Replaces: This feat replaces the improved critical feat.

    It is difficult in Core D&D to make a Dex-based melee combatant work. First of all, the Weapon Finesse feat has a weird +1 BAB requirement, which keeps it out of the hands of rogues, monks, bards, and other classes that otherwise fit with an agile fighter archetype. Second, a Dex-based fighter still needs Strength, since Weapon Finesse doesn't do anything for damage. His best option is either to spend 3 feats or 1 feat and a level dip to get a Shadow Hand stance and Shadow Blade, and then he is prevented from using any other ToB stances. My Weapon Finesse fixes both problems, while at the same time helping two-weapon fighting a little bit by allowing off-hand weapons to gain the full Dex bonus as damage.

    Weapon Finesse
    A light touch is often more deadly that brute force.
    Prerequisite: Dex 13
    Benefit: You may use your Dexterity bonus instead of your Strength bonus to modify attack rolls with light weapons, rapiers, whips, spiked chains, and any other weapons that specify they can be used with the Weapon Finesse feat. You may add your Dexterity bonus instead of your Strength bonus on weapon damage rolls with such weapons. Your Dexterity modifier is not halved for damage with off-hand weapons, nor is it multiplied by 1 1/2 for damage with two-handed weapons.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the weapon finesse feat.

    In keeping with my goal of making the Fighter obsolete, the new Weapon Focus feat not only lumps all four feats in the chain into one feat that scales with BAB, but gives a damage bonus from the beginning, and winds up being significantly better than the vanilla feat. My question, however, is whether I've improved it enough? Would you, as a melee character, consider taking this feat?

    Weapon Focus
    You know how to wield one type of weapon with devastating accuracy and impact.
    Prerequisites: Proficiency with selected weapon
    Benefit: Choose one type of weapon, such as longsword or club. You gain a +1 bonus on attack rolls and +2 bonus on damage rolls on attacks made with that weapon. The attack bonus increases by 1 and the damage bonus increases by 2 for every 4 points of base attack bonus you possess, to a maximum of +6 attack and +12 damage at a base attack bonus of 20.
    Special: You may change the weapon that this feat applies to by spending 2 hours a day for 7 consecutive days practicing with the new weapon.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the weapon focus, greater weapon focus, weapon specialization, and greater weapon specialization feats.


    Combat Styles (NEW!)
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    Two-Weapon Fighting and Archery are typically considered weak combat styles, and part of the problem is that the styles are far more feat-intensive than Two-Handed Fighting and are less powerful (with some exceptions, such as a very well-built TWF Rogue).

    Archery
    The only core archery feat that so far I have been unable to come up with a rewrite for is the Manyshot feat (Shot on the Run will have to wait until I have a good rewrite of the Spring Attack feat). Any ideas?

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    Far Shot
    You are devastating at long ranges.
    Prerequisites: Improved Shot
    Benefit: When you use a projectile weapon, such as a bow, its range intcrement incrases by one-half. When you use a thrown weapon, its range increment is doubled. The bonus to attack and damage you gain from the Improved Shot feat apply when making an attack at anyone within 60 feet. If you have a source of precision damage, such as Sneak Attack, you can apply that damage to targets within 60 feet as long as the other requirements for the precision damage are met.
    Normal: The Improved Shot feat grants a bonus only on attacks made against opponents within 30 feet. Precision damage typically only applies on ragned attacks if the target is within 30 feet.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the improved precise shot feat.

    Greater Shot
    Your ranged attacks strike unerringly.
    Prerequisites: Dex 19, Improved Shot, base attack bonus +9
    Benefit: Your ranged attacks ignore the AC bonus granted by cover less than total and the miss chance from concealment less than total concealment. When attacking a grappling opponent with a ranged weapon you always strike at your intended opponent.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the improved precise shot feat.

    I decreased the BAB requirement on this because I think forcing a ranged rogue to wait until 15th level to take this feat is a little silly.

    Improved Shot
    Your bow sings, and your enemies fall.
    Benefit: You ignore the penalty for attacking an opponent engaged in melee combat with a ranged weapon. You also gain a +1 bonus on ranged attack and damage rolls made against opponents within 30 feet. This bonus increases by 1 per 3 points of BAB you have, to a maximum of +7 at a base attack bonus of +18.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the point blank shot and precise shot feats.

    Power Shot
    You can trade accuracy for power with your bow.
    Prerequisite: Str 13
    Benefit: On your action, before making attack rolls for a round, you may choose to subtract a number from all attack rolls made with bows and add twice that number to all damage rolls made with bows. The penalty you take may not exceed you base attack bonus. The penalty and bonus last until the beginning of your next turn.

    Rapid Reload
    You can ready your weapons with alacrity.
    Benefit: The time required for you to reload any weapon is reduced: if reloading required a swift or move action, you can now reload as a free action; if reloading required a standard or full-round action or 1 round, you can now reload as a move action; if reloading required more than 1 round, reduce the amount of time required by 1 round.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the rapid reload feat.

    Rapid Shot
    Your arrows fall like rain
    Prerequisites: Dex 13, Improved Shot
    Benefit: When making a full attack with a ranged weapon, you make make an additional attack at your full base attack bonus, but all attacks you make this round (including attacks of opportunity made before the beginning of your next turn) take a -2 penalty. For every 6 points of base attack bonus you have, you make make one additional attack in a full attack at your highest attack bonus, but you take an additional -2 penalty to your attacks for each additional attack you make (to a maximum of 4 additional attacks at a -8 penalty at a base atack bonus of +18). For instance, if a 12-level ranger with the rapid shot feat makes a full attack, he can choose between base attack routines of +12/+7/+2, +10/+10/+5/+0, +8/+8/+8/+3/-2, and +6/+6/+6/+6/+1/-4.
    Special A 2nd-level ragner who has chosen the archery combat style gains the rapid shot feat as a bonus feat.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the rapid shot feat.


    Two-Weapon Fighting
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    Two-Weapon Defense
    Your spinning weapons leave no room for attack.
    Prerequisite: Dex 15, Two-Weapon Fighting
    Benefit: When wielding a double weapon or fighting with two weapons, you gain a +2 shield bonus to AC. This bonus inceases by 1 per 3 points of base attack bonus you have, to a maximum of +7 at BAB +15. In addition, when making an Attack of Opportunity and wielding two weapons or a double weapon, you may make one attack with each weapon or each end of the douuble weapon you are wielding. You take the normal penalties for wighting with two weapons.
    Special: A 6th-level ranger who has chosen the two-weapon combat style gains the two-weapon defense feat as a bonus feat even if he does not meet the prerequisites for it, but only when he is wearing light or no armor.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the two-weapon defense feat.

    Two-Weapon Fighting
    By combining the basic Two-Weapon-Fighting feats into a single feat, I've both made TWF more viable on builds without a boatload of feats and made the ranger extremely dip-worthy. I'm not too worried about this, however, I would like people's opinions on what I should replace the Rangers 2nd and 3rd combat style feats with. I'm currently giving them the new two-weapon defense as their 2nd combat style feat, but what should I give them for the 3rd?

    Twin blades flash, and your foes fall before you.
    Prerequisite: Dex 15
    Benefit: The penalty to your main hand attack for fighting with two weapons reduces by 2 and the penalty to your off hand attack for fighting with two weapons reduces by 6 (to a -2 for both if your off-hand weapon is light and a -4 for both if your off-hand weapon is not light). In addition, when making a full attack, you may make one off-hand attack for each main hand attack you have, and at the same base attack bonus (so extra attacks from having a high BAB, haste, or other effects give you one extra attack with each weapon). So a 6th-level fighter with the Two-Weapon Fighting feat and fighting with two kukris who is under the effect of her wizard friend's haste spell may make a total of six attacks: her main hand gets two from a BAB of +6 and one from haste, for a base attack routine of +6/+6/+1 on her main hand. Her off-hand then gets three attacks at the same base attack routine of +6/+6/+1.Replaces: This feat replaces the weapon finesse feat.
    Normal: The penalties for fighting with two weapons are -6 with your main hand and -10 for the off hand, with the penalties reduced by 2 if the off-hand weapon is a light weapon. You may only make one off-hand attack on a full attack.
    Special: A 2nd-level ranger who has chosen the two-weapon combat style gains the two-weapon fighting feat as a bonus feat even if he does not meet the prerequisites for it, but only when he is wearing light or no armor.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the two-weapon-fighting, improved two-weapon fighting, and greater two-weapon fighting feats.



    Armor and Shield Proficiencies (NEW!)
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    Armor Proficiency (Heavy)
    You are trained in the use of heavy armor, such as splint mail and half-plate
    Benefit: When you wear heavy armor, the armor check penalty for that armor applies only to Balance, Climb, Escape Artist, Hide, Jump, Move Silently, Sleight of Hand, Swim, and Tumble checks. In addition, when you gain this feat, choose one type of heavy armor, such as banded mail or full plate, and gain one of the following benefits:
    • You reduce the armor check penalty you take for wearing the selected armor by 2
    • You can run at quadruple your speed in the selected armor instead of triple your speed
    • You treat the armor's armor bonus as 2 higher than it normally is

    Replaces: This feat replaces the armor proficiency(heavy) feat.

    Armor Proficiency (Light)
    You are trained in the use of light armor, such as leather armor and chain shirts
    Benefit: When you wear light armor, the armor check penalty for that armor applies only to Balance, Climb, Escape Artist, Hide, Jump, Move Silently, Sleight of Hand, Swim, and Tumble checks. In addition, when you gain this feat, choose one type of light armor, such as padded or studded leather, and gain one of the following benefits:
    • You treat the arcane spell failure chance of the selected armor as 10% lower than it normally is
    • You treat the selected armor as having a maximum Dexterity bonus 2 higher than it normally is
    • You treat the selected armor's armor bonus as 1 higher than it normally is

    Replaces: This feat replaces the armor proficiency(light) feat.

    Armor Proficiency (Medium)
    You are trained in the use of medium armor, such as hide armor and chainmail
    Benefit: When you wear medium armor, the armor check penalty for that armor applies only to Balance, Climb, Escape Artist, Hide, Jump, Move Silently, Sleight of Hand, Swim, and Tumble checks. In addition, when you gain this feat, choose one type of light armor, such as scale mail or breastplates, and gain one of the following benefits:
    • Your speed is not reduced for wearing the selected armor
    • You do not incur the selected armor's armor check penalty on two skills of your choice from the list above; if you select Swim it counts as both your choices
    • You treat the armor's armor bonus as 1 higher than it normally is

    Replaces: This feat replaces the armor proficiency(medium) feat.

    Shield Proficiency
    You are trained in the use of shields
    Benefit: When you wear a bulker, light shield, or heavy shield, the armor check penalty for that shield applies only to Balance, Climb, Escape Artist, Hide, Jump, Move Silently, Sleight of Hand, Swim, and Tumble checks. In addition, when you gain this feat, choose one type of shield, such as buckler or heavy steel shield, and gain one of the following benefits:
    • You do not incur the selected shield's armor check penalty on two skills of your choice from the list above; if you select Swim it counts as both your choices
    • You treat the selected shield's shield bonus as 1 higher than it normally is
    • You treat the arcane spell failure chance of the selected shield as 10% lower than it normally is
    • Your selected shield's shield bonus (including enhancement bonus, if any) applies to touch attacks (but not incorporeal touch attacks) directed at you as long as you are not flat-footed.

    Replaces: This feat replaces the shield proficiency feat.

    Tower Shield Proficiency
    You are trained in the use of tower shields
    Benefit: When you wear a tower shield, the armor check penalty for the shield applies only to Balance, Climb, Escape Artist, Hide, Jump, Move Silently, Sleight of Hand, Swim, and Tumble checks. In addition, when you gain this feat, choose one of the following benefits:
    • You treat the tower shield's armor check penalty as 4 less than it normally is
    • You may shield bash with a tower shield, dealing 1d8 bludgoning damage on a successful hit; the penalty to attacks for wearing a tower shield applies to these attacks
    • You may use the shield to grant yourself partial cover and make one normal melee attack as a full-round action

    Replaces: This feat replaces the tower shield proficiency feat.


    Saves
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    When updating these feats, I wanted to add something that would be of benefit to both people who had high saves and low saves. An ability like "you no longer fail on a natural 1" would only help those people who had a very high save score already, and would do nothing for people with poor saves. On the other hand, simply giving a larger bonus wouldn't hlp people who already had sky-high saves. I like the compromise I have here. The people who only fail on a natural 1 have their failure chance reduced from 1 in 20 to 1 in 400, and the people who were failing on a 10 or lower get another chance at success.


    Great Fortitude
    You can resist attacks on your body.
    Benefit: You gain a +2 bonus on Fortitude saves. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, once per day you can reroll a Fortitude save on which you rolled a natural 1.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the great fortitude feat.

    Iron Will
    Your will is indomitable.
    Benefit: You gain a +2 bonus on Will saves. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, once per day you can reroll a Will save on which you rolled a natural 1.
    Replaces: This feat replaces Iron Will feat.

    Lightning Reflexes
    You can move quickly when needed.
    Benefit: You gain a +2 bonus on Reflex saves. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, once per day you can reroll a Reflex save on which you rolled a natural 1.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the lightning reflexes feat.



    Skills
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    The skill feats are, to put it bluntly, boring. Also, the bonuses they give are negligible after low levels. So I attempt to fix both problems by making them scale and by giving them additional abilities.

    The Skill Focus feat now gives up to a +9 bonus and gives a number of daily rerolls. Question: Do you think the bonus is too high? Too low? What about the number of daily rerolls? Should you have one as soon as you take the feat, even if that's at level 1?

    The "+2 to 2 skills" feats are scaled up, now giving a bonus of between +2 and +6. In addition, if you have high enough ranks you gain additional minor abilities, which are often weak class or racial features. This has two purposes: first, it improves the value of the feats themselves, and second, it frees players who want a character with some particular abilities from having to play as a certain race or take levels in a certain class. Since there are so many feats of this type and I want at least 4 or 5 options for each feat, I could use the Playground's help in coming up with more options. My criterion for choosing abilities is this: it should be something that cannot be achieved simply by having a high skill check. For instance, an ability that I would not include as an option for the animal affinity feat is "you always succeed on attempts to fast dismount." Since this can be achieved simply by having a high enough skill check (+19 in this case), it is not a good option for an ability.

    A question have is this: do you think the skills should be reshuffled? Are there skill pairs that either really don't make sense or are so weak/situational that the feat would never be used? In general I would prefer to add attractive special qualities to feats rather than changing the basic premise, but I am open to suggestions.

    Skill Focus
    You have special training, experience, or talent with a particular skill
    Prerequisites: 4 ranks in the selected skill
    Benefit: Choose one skill. You gain a +3 bonus to checks made with that skill. This bonus increases by 1 for every 3 character levels you possess, to a maximum of +9 at character level 20th. In addition, you may as a free action reroll a check made with this skill 1 time per day per 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of 4 times per day at 20th level. You may declare that you wish to reroll after you discover whether you succeeded or failed.
    Special: You may take this feat multiple times. Each time you take it, it applies to a new skill.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the skill focus feat.

    Alertness
    You notice things that other people miss
    Benefit: Spot and Listen are considered class skills for you for any class level you take after selecting this feat. You gain a +2 bonus on Spot and Listen checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, if you have at least 4 ranks in either Spot or Listen, you gain one of the following special qualities:

    Blindsense: You gain blindsense 20 feet.
    Blindsight: You gain blindsight 10 feet. Requires 10 ranks in Listen.
    Darkvision: You gain darkvision 30 feet. Requires 10 ranks in Spot.
    Elf intuition: You notice secret doors as an elf does.
    Scent: You gain scent.
    Stonecunning: You gain stonecunning as a dwarf.
    Tremorsense: You gain tremorsense 40 feet.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the alertness feat.

    Animal Affinity
    Animals respond well to you
    Benefit: Handle Animal and Ride are considered class skills for you for any class level you take after selecting this feat. You gain a +2 bonus on Handle Animal and Ride checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, if you have at least 4 ranks in Handle Animal or Ride, you gain one of the following special qualities:

    Coordinated Movement: While mounted, you gain a +2 bonus on attack rolls in any round your mount makes no attacks.
    Swift Training: You can train animals tricks in half the normal time.
    Wild Empathy: You gain the wild empathy ability as a ranger of half your character level.

    Replaces: This feat replaces the animal affinity feat.

    Athletic
    You are a master athlete.
    Benefit: Climb and Jump are considered class skills for you for any class level you take after selecting this feat. You gain a +2 bonus on Climb and Jump checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, if you have at least 4 ranks in Climb or Jump, you gain one of the following special qualities:


    Replaces: This feat replaces the athletic feat.


    Deceitful
    You have the means to make people think you're someone else.
    Benefit: Disguise and Forgery are considered class skills for you for any class level you take after selecting this feat. You gain a +2 bonus on Disguise and Forgery checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, if you have at least 4 ranks in Disguise or Forgery, you gain one of the following special qualities:


    Replaces: This feat replaces the deceitful feat.



    Deft Hands
    Your hands are precise instruments.
    Benefit: Sleight of Hand and Use Rope are considered class skills for you for any class level you take after selecting this feat. You gain a +2 bonus on Sleight of Hand and Use Rope checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, if you have at least 4 ranks in Sleight of Hand or Use Rope, you gain one of the following special qualities:


    Replaces: This feat replaces the deft hands feat.



    Diligent
    You know how to take your time and do things carefully
    Benefit: Appraise and Decipher Script are considered class skills for you for any class level you take after selecting this feat. You gain a +2 bonus on Appraise and Decipher Script checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, if you have at least 4 ranks in Appraise or Decipher Script, you gain one of the following special qualities:


    Replaces: This feat replaces the diligent feat.


    Investigator
    You will reveal all things hidden.
    Benefit: Gather Information and Search are considered class skills for you for any class level you take after selecting this feat. You gain a +2 bonus on Gather Information and Search checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, if you have at least 4 ranks in Gather Information or Search, you gain one of the following special qualities:


    Replaces: This feat replaces the investigator feat.


    Magical Aptitude
    Magic is second nature to you
    Benefit: Spellcraft and Use Magic Device are considered class skills for you for any class level you take after selecting this feat. You gain a +2 bonus on Spellcraft and Use Magic Device checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, if you have at least 4 ranks in Sleight of Hand or Use Rope, you gain one of the following special qualities:

    Natural Mage: Choose one 0th-level sorcerer spell. You may use this spell as a spell-like ability a number of times per day equal to one-third your ranks in the Spellcraft skill (round down).
    Reliable Wielder: You may take 10 on Use Magic Device checks. Requires 15 ranks in Use Magic Device.

    Replaces: This feat replaces the magical aptitude feat.


    Negotiator
    You know what people want to hear, and you can tell it to them.
    Benefit: Diplomacy and Sense Motive are considered class skills for you for any class level you take after selecting this feat. You gain a +2 bonus on Diplomacy and Sense Motive checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, if you have at least 4 ranks in Diplomacy or Sense Motive, you gain one of the following special qualities:


    Replaces: This feat replaces the negotiator feat.


    Nimble Fingers
    Complex mechanisms obey your every whim.
    Benefit: Disable Device and Open Lock are considered class skills for you for any class level you take after selecting this feat. You gain a +2 bonus on Disable Device and Open Lock checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, if you have at least 4 ranks in Disable Device or Open Lock, you gain one of the following special qualities:


    Replaces: This feat replaces the nimble fingers feat.


    Persuasive
    People just seem to listen to you.
    Benefit: Bluff and Intimidate are considered class skills for you for any class level you take after selecting this feat. You gain a +2 bonus on Bluff and Intimidate checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, if you have at least 4 ranks in Bluff or Intimidate, you gain one of the following special qualities:


    Replaces: This feat replaces the persuasive feat.


    Self-Sufficient
    You are skilled in survivalist techniques.
    Benefit: Heal and Survival are considered class skills for you for any class level you take after selecting this feat. You gain a +2 bonus on Heal and Survival checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, if you have at least 4 ranks in Heal or Survival, you gain one of the following special qualities:

    Hands of a Healer: You may make a Heal check as a standard action to heal a disabled, dying, or stabilized creature. The creature heals a number of hit points equal to half your check result (rounded down). Even if this healing does not bring a dying creature to positive hit points, it does stabilize them.

    Replaces: This feat replaces the self-sufficient feat.


    Stealthy
    You know how to stay hidden
    Benefit: Hide and Move Silently are considered class skills for you for any class level you take after selecting this feat. You gain a +2 bonus on Hide and Move Silently checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +6 at 20th character level. In addition, if you have at least 4 ranks in Hide or Move Silently, you gain one of the following special qualities:


    Replaces: This feat replaces the stealthy feat.


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    Augment Summoning (NEW!)
    You summoned creatures are stronger and tougher than normal.
    Benefit: Each creature you conjure with any conjuration(summoning) spell gains a +4 enhancement bonus to Strength and Constitution for the duration of the spell that summoned it.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the augment summoning feat.


    Cleave
    The force of your swing takes your weapon from one foe to another.
    Prerequisites: Str 13, Power Attack
    Benefit: Whenever you successfully strike an enemy with a melee attack, you may make an additional attack at the same bonus against another foe you threaten. In addition, if you deal enough damage to a creature to drop it (that is, knock it unconscious or kill it), you may make a 5-foot step and then make your granted attack against any foe you threaten (which may include creatures you did not threaten before). You may make a number of extra attacks equal to 1 + one-third your base attack bonus (round down), to a maximum of 7 extra attacks at a base attack bonus of +18.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the cleave and great cleave feats.

    Dodge
    Your enemy swings, and you simply aren't there.
    Prerequisite: Dex 13
    Benefit: You gain a +1 dodge bonus to armor class. This bonus increases by 1 for every 2 points of base reflex save you have, to a maximum of +7 at a base reflex save of +12.
    Normal: The penalties for fighting with two weapons are -6 with your main hand and -10 for the off hand, with the penalties reduced by 2 if the off-hand weapon is a

    light weapon. You may only make one off-hand attack on a full attack.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the dodge feat.

    Improved Initiative
    You react quickly to danger.
    Benefit: You gain a +4 bonus on initiative checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 character levels you have, to a maximum of +8 at character level 20. In addition, you have a 5% chance per character level to act in any surprise round, even if you were unaware of your opponents.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the improved initiative feat.

    This feat is already considered good, so I added a little scaling and a situational effect. I don't think always acting in the surprise round is bad for a 20th-level character.

    Mobility
    You dodge in and out of a foe's reach, and find opportunities for attack.
    Prerequisites: Dex 13, Dodge
    Benefit: You gain a +4 dodge bonus to armor class against attacks of opportunity provoked by moving out of a foe's threatened square. This bonus increases by 1 for every 3 points of base reflex save you have, to a maximum of +8 at a base reflex save of +12. If a foe attempts an attack of opportunity against you for moving out of a threatened square and misses because of the dodge bonus granted by this feat, you may make a free melee attack against him if you threaten him. This is an attack of opportunity and counts against your maximum number of attacks of opportunity for the upcoming round. If you attempt to avoid an attack of opportunity by Tumbling out of a foe's threatened square and fail, you cannot make this attack, even if the foe misses because of the bonus granted by this feat.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the mobility feats.

    Toughness
    You are remarkably tough.
    Benefit: You gain an extra 2 hit points + 2 hit points per hit die.
    Replaces: This feat replaces the toughness and improved toughness feats.
    Last edited by Bakkan; 2012-05-09 at 05:01 PM.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Improving and Scaling Core Mundane Feats (WIP)

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    Default Re: [3.5] Improving and Scaling Core Mundane Feats (WIP)

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    Default Re: [3.5] Improving and Scaling Core Mundane Feats (WIP)

    I like the scaling feats idea, but it does kind of make things a little too easy, and some of the bonuses I feel are a tad high, but the skill monkey inside me loves the idea of having +9 to so many skills.

    As for making the fighter obsolete, I really would rather see making the fighter better. The Tome of Battle in my mind is still just too easy. It's one of those things that goes back to my personal opinion of "D&D shouldn't turn into a video game where you kill everything as effectively as possible and forget the roleplay.", but then again, I am kinda munchkin like at heart. I just don't like to see so much non-magical magic being a martial class. I would rather just see successful martial classes without supernatural magic-esque abilites.

    Also, I still love to play the fighter, just because Its more fun to optimize than something that I just pick a few things and supermode is engaged...

    Still, I like the scaling feat concept just because it makes the feats much more effective.

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    Default Re: [3.5] Improving and Scaling Core Mundane Feats (WIP)

    Weapon Finesse looks fine, but it should have a minimum Dex requirement. Even just 13, like Power Attack does for Strength. Won't be that big of a deal for anyone who wants to take it, but without any kind of prerequisite it just feels out of place in Core.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Improving and Scaling Core Mundane Feats (WIP)

    So, with the cost of a single feat, I can use DEX for attack, AC and damage?

    Also, why do the saves and skills feats scale, when the saves and the skills already scale by themselves? You'd be simply piling up a large static bonus onto another.

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    Default Re: [3.5] Improving and Scaling Core Mundane Feats (WIP)

    Quote Originally Posted by The Troubadour View Post
    So, with the cost of a single feat, I can use DEX for attack, AC and damage?
    Yes, and it's a 100% reasonable feat. Mundane characters are allowed to have nice things; this feat does what the original ought to; that is, remove a little bit of MAD from classes that really don't deserve it. Heck, I'd support something like this being part of the core rules, instead of having to take a feat for it.

    Also, why do the saves and skills feats scale, when the saves and the skills already scale by themselves? You'd be simply piling up a large static bonus onto another.
    Because skills and saves do scale. When your total Hide modifier is +6, a +2 bonus is meaningful. When your total Hide modifier is +30, a +2 bonus is insignificant. Scaling feats keep themselves relevant at high levels without being overpowered at low ones, which is what they should do. Feats like "Nimble Fingers" and "Endurance" that are really just traps for inexperienced players should not exist, period. You only get seven feats over twenty levels, and they're a critical part of customizing your character. They should all do something useful in the end.
    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    Grod's Law: You cannot and should not balance bad mechanics by making them annoying to use
    Major Works:
    • STaRS: The Simple Tabletop Roleplaying System; my attempt at a generic rules-light system.
    • Giants and Graveyards: My collected 3.5 revisions-- houserules, class fixes, ban lists and more.
    • Chopping Down the Christmas Tree: Rules for low- or no-magic item games of 3.5.
    • D&D in M&M-- Balancing 3.5 by porting it lock, stock, and barrel into a more balanced system.

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    Default Re: [3.5] Improving and Scaling Core Mundane Feats (WIP)

    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    Yes, and it's a 100% reasonable feat. Mundane characters are allowed to have nice things; this feat does what the original ought to; that is, remove a little bit of MAD from classes that really don't deserve it.
    As a 4th Edition player/DM, I agree with you - in theory. In practice, I think DEX is a much stronger attribute in 3.5 than in 4E. I don't think this will affect two-handed weapon fighters at all, but I do think a feat like this would obsolete sword-and-board fighters.
    I don't know. Would you be opposed to it using only half DEX mod for damage? I think it would be fine, then.

    Because skills and saves do scale. When your total Hide modifier is +6, a +2 bonus is meaningful. When your total Hide modifier is +30, a +2 bonus is insignificant. Scaling feats keep themselves relevant at high levels without being overpowered at low ones, which is what they should do.
    But that only leads to bonus inflation! When you have a +32 bonus just from skill ranks/scaling feat, what's the point of even rolling the die unless it's for a contested roll?
    It's not like I'm opposed to the idea of the bonuses scaling - I just think they may be scaling too high. Or perhaps I'm misinterpreting the game's intended overall scaling?

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    Default Re: [3.5] Improving and Scaling Core Mundane Feats (WIP)

    Thank you all for your input, let me respond to some of the comments so far.

    Quote Originally Posted by Axier View Post
    I like the scaling feats idea, but it does kind of make things a little too easy, and some of the bonuses I feel are a tad high, but the skill monkey inside me loves the idea of having +9 to so many skills.

    As for making the fighter obsolete, I really would rather see making the fighter better. The Tome of Battle in my mind is still just too easy. It's one of those things that goes back to my personal opinion of "D&D shouldn't turn into a video game where you kill everything as effectively as possible and forget the roleplay.", but then again, I am kinda munchkin like at heart. I just don't like to see so much non-magical magic being a martial class. I would rather just see successful martial classes without supernatural magic-esque abilites.

    Also, I still love to play the fighter, just because Its more fun to optimize than something that I just pick a few things and supermode is engaged...

    Still, I like the scaling feat concept just because it makes the feats much more effective.
    I think this is a difference in desired playstyle. I know a lot of people (probably most people) prefer play at the low T3-high T4 level. I prefer to play at the high-T3-Low T1 level. As far as making the Fighter obsolete, I only mean obsolete in terms of the mechanical class. I don't want a class whose only or primary class feature is "more feats" to be necessary. Fluff-wise, there's nothing that a Fighter can do that a Warblade, Crusader, Swashbuckler, Barbarian, or any of many other classes can't.

    Quote Originally Posted by NeoSeraphi View Post
    Weapon Finesse looks fine, but it should have a minimum Dex requirement. Even just 13, like Power Attack does for Strength. Won't be that big of a deal for anyone who wants to take it, but without any kind of prerequisite it just feels out of place in Core.
    An excellent point, and a clear oversight on my end. Fixed.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Troubadour View Post
    So, with the cost of a single feat, I can use DEX for attack, AC and damage?

    Also, why do the saves and skills feats scale, when the saves and the skills already scale by themselves? You'd be simply piling up a large static bonus onto another.
    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    Yes, and it's a 100% reasonable feat. Mundane characters are allowed to have nice things; this feat does what the original ought to; that is, remove a little bit of MAD from classes that really don't deserve it. Heck, I'd support something like this being part of the core rules, instead of having to take a feat for it.

    Because skills and saves do scale. When your total Hide modifier is +6, a +2 bonus is meaningful. When your total Hide modifier is +30, a +2 bonus is insignificant. Scaling feats keep themselves relevant at high levels without being overpowered at low ones, which is what they should do. Feats like "Nimble Fingers" and "Endurance" that are really just traps for inexperienced players should not exist, period. You only get seven feats over twenty levels, and they're a critical part of customizing your character. They should all do something useful in the end.
    Grod_The_Giant has excpressed my opinion on the subject perfectly, and I agree that making a part of the core rules should have been done in the beginning. If I were rewriting the whole system rather than just the feats, I would likely be making that change.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Troubadour View Post
    As a 4th Edition player/DM, I agree with you - in theory. In practice, I think DEX is a much stronger attribute in 3.5 than in 4E. I don't think this will affect two-handed weapon fighters at all, but I do think a feat like this would obsolete sword-and-board fighters.
    I don't know. Would you be opposed to it using only half DEX mod for damage? I think it would be fine, then.

    But that only leads to bonus inflation! When you have a +32 bonus just from skill ranks/scaling feat, what's the point of even rolling the die unless it's for a contested roll?
    It's not like I'm opposed to the idea of the bonuses scaling - I just think they may be scaling too high. Or perhaps I'm misinterpreting the game's intended overall scaling?
    It would not obsolete sword-and-board fighters any more than they already are. As it currently stands, the only way to make sword-and-board viable in the level of play I like is to use ToB. And if you are going that way, then you can use Dex, but then you are restriced to a lower weapon die. You'd save a feat and likely have as much AC simply by keeping Strength as your primary stat.

    Also, while I can't speak to the game's "intended" scaling, the fact is that bonuses do scale quickly. If I have a character with a specialty skill (such as a caster with Spellceaft) I expect to auto-succeed on all but the most important checks starting at or around level 10. And I think this is appropriate. Once you're at the mid-levels, you're talking about truly superhuman characters, who should automatically succeed at things like identifying spells as they're cast or jumping a 20-ft chasm from a standing position.


    Thanks for the comments! Keep them coming. Any thoughts regarding the save or skill feats?
    Last edited by Bakkan; 2012-03-03 at 02:14 PM.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Improving and Scaling Core Mundane Feats (WIP)

    Hello everyone! I'm back with rewrites of many of the combat style feats (archery and two-weapon fighting). More to come! Please let me know what you think I should do with some of the other feats. I've put a list of all the General feats from the PHB in my first post so we can keep track of what feats have been fixed and which have not.

    Thanks for your help!

    UPDATE! Added new versions of the armor and shield proficiency feats, and some miscellaneous feats (cleave, dodge, improved initiative, mobility, and toughness), and a weapon feat, improved critical.
    Last edited by Bakkan; 2012-03-17 at 10:56 PM.
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    Default Re: [3.5] Improving and Scaling Core Mundane Feats (WIP)

    For your skills, I thought I read in an earlier version that your +2 to two skills made those skills class skills for the character. That should be added in as it allows the ranks to go up.

    For your combat feats, it seems odd to me that all the TWF feats were condensed (more or less) and the archery feats weren't. But, ignoring that, having a feat that allows you to provide covering fire or something would be neat; probably should have rapid shot and many shot as prereqs, but then allow you to put the hurt on an area or group of foes as a full round action or something.

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