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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    RedWizardGuy

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    Default need some help with an ur-priest villain

    ok, I'm helping set up a campaign in which the main villain is an ur-priest. the twist is that this particular ur-priest is also a demon (or some other kind of fiend yet to be determined). there is already a bit of back story in this that I don't want to spoil (I know at least one guy from our group hangs out here....) so I can't really get into the whys of this, but here is the problem sitting in front of me.

    1) I've never played an ur-priest before.

    and

    2) my knowledge of fiends is currently limited to what is found in the MM.

    I'm thinking this guy should be a higher end OPed build. to that end; what are some good ways to abuse ur-priest? what should I look for in a fiend? are there some really BA fiends at or below 10HD that I can use? if I get a lower level fiend what would be the best class or PrC to act as filler? how do I tell if the fiend would have an LA when used this way?

    lots of questions I know. I'm going to be looking threw the books I have to try finding stuff that way, but anything you guys can come up with would be helpful.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    Urpriest's Avatar

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    Default Re: need some help with an ur-priest villain

    First of all, LA is irrelevant. You're making a villain, so you're not limited by LA, but by CR. I'd recommend that you read my Monster Handbook if this topic confuses you, there's a link to it in my sig.

    For now, I'd like the following info from you: first, what is your target CR? Second, do you plan to treat Ur-Priest levels as associated or non-associated? If you're not familiar with those terms, an associated class adds one CR per level, and is usually a class that enhances the abilities the monster already has. Usually this means full-BAB classes for melee combatant monsters, sneaky classes for sneaky monsters, and casters only for monsters with their own casting that would stack with it. In other cases you'd treat the class levels as non-associated, so each would add only 1/2 CR, to represent that you're adding lower level abilities to a higher level monster so they aren't contributing as much. That said, because Ur-Priest has a fast progression you might want to consider it as associated even if it isn't being put on a casting monster, since one Ur-Priest level is about as good as two Cleric levels.

    Another question to think about after you answer those: do you want this character to focus a lot on Ur-Priest abilities and casting, or would you rather they theurge with arcane casting as well, or focus on melee combat?
    Lord Raziere herd I like Blasphemy, so Urpriest Exalted as a Malefactor

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Kobold

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    Default Re: need some help with an ur-priest villain

    You want to use Mystic Theurge class. And Practiced Spellcaster feat.

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    SolithKnightGuy

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    Default Re: need some help with an ur-priest villain

    Go and take a look at the Fiend Folio(s). There's some good fiends in there. I'd make a custom fiend chassis, if I was you, though. Make him a scion of one of hell's nobility, so he's not as powerful as a Lord of the Nine, but if he lives long enough he probably will be.

    Ur-Priest is simply a cleric who gets his spells over 10 levels instead of 20. He gets access to all the cleric spells, all the way up to 9th level spells. It can be entered at level 6.

    Like any full caster, ur-priests get access to Calling spells like Planar Ally and Planar Binding. I'd make this guy into a minion-master, which you can do in a number of interesting ways with Cleric spells.

    In Fiend Folio there is a class called the Fiend of Possession (and there are also two other Fiend classes, but we'll ignore those for the moment). This guy should have a small stable of Fiends of Possession. They can possess people and force them to do stuff or give them penalties, or they can give them bonuses (+4 or -4 Profane to every ability score), or they can possess objects and animate them (like animate objects, the spell), and they are nigh impossible to detect when they are ethereal. The class is designed for Fiends. He should be using these to do stuff, and have one permanently bound to him for +4 profane to every stat.

    The cleric handbook should have some tips for what a cleric can do, and they mostly apply to ur-priest as well.

    Divine MetaMagic (DMM): Persist Spell will probably be a good investment. He can have several powerful buffs up all day that way. Some Fiendish Grafts, or Undead Grafts, to grant him immunities and special abilities will help to underline how EVUL he is, too.

    Clerics get a lot of undead stuff and Urpriest gets Turn/Rebuke, so he could have some undead too. Undead Fiends are pretty awesome, especially awakened Kelvezu skeletons (MMII) and awakened zombie Jiarlith (sp?) (Hunting cats on the same page as the Kelvezu demons). Don't forget your corpse crafter and desecrate.

    There's other stuff he could do, but it depends on what capabilities you want him to have. Clerics can do a lot of stuff.

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    RedWizardGuy

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    Default Re: need some help with an ur-priest villain

    the target CR is 20. that might change but modding an existing build should be easier than starting from scratch. and I'd have to say that ur-priest is associated, even if the fiend is built for something else both the power level and story agree that the PrC is at the heart of this characters power.

    I do want to have the ur-priest be the star of the show, it's kinda the foundation of the character idea. that being said, I'd be lying if I said I hadn't considered using theurge to add some arcane. there are even story reasons to justify it.

    truth be told I'm still torn between pure ur-priest and theurge.

    I'm not worried about melee though. most fiends are already competent melee fighters and this guy will have access to cleric buffs so he should be good enough on that front. could even have V vs. Black Dragon type encounters, but this route would be a tertiary concern.

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    Flickerdart's Avatar

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    Default Re: need some help with an ur-priest villain

    Remember that you can modify the Half-Fiend template based on the base fiend, so if you need a smaller CR increase but like a particular powerful fiend, it's easy enough to cut him down to reasonable adjustment values while still keeping a lot of what made it cool.
    Quote Originally Posted by JaronK View Post
    Frankly, a Wizard can suck even more than a Fighter could ever dream of sucking. A Fighter can stab himself to death, but only a Wizard could Plane Shift to some horrible far realm to be tortured for an eternity of insanity.


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    SolithKnightGuy

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    Default Re: need some help with an ur-priest villain

    Why focus on the casting? Is he specifically a Dark Priest? Or his a Fiend? For a Dark Priest, Quinn Dexter style character, what's really important is doing illogical things in the name of his cause/god, and of course being a theatrical and snappy dresser.



    EDIT: And overwhelming magical power is out of character for both. A Dark Priest's defining characteristic is his fanaticism and unwillingness to die - he uses magic, but it's not what defines him. A Fiend is defined by his secrets and plans, and his evil nature (rage, being undone by cruelty etc) not by his magic.
    Last edited by Rejakor; 2012-11-19 at 05:20 PM.

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    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    Urpriest's Avatar

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    Default Re: need some help with an ur-priest villain

    Quote Originally Posted by pyromanser244 View Post
    the target CR is 20. that might change but modding an existing build should be easier than starting from scratch. and I'd have to say that ur-priest is associated, even if the fiend is built for something else both the power level and story agree that the PrC is at the heart of this characters power.

    I do want to have the ur-priest be the star of the show, it's kinda the foundation of the character idea. that being said, I'd be lying if I said I hadn't considered using theurge to add some arcane. there are even story reasons to justify it.

    truth be told I'm still torn between pure ur-priest and theurge.

    I'm not worried about melee though. most fiends are already competent melee fighters and this guy will have access to cleric buffs so he should be good enough on that front. could even have V vs. Black Dragon type encounters, but this route would be a tertiary concern.
    While your logic on associated vs. nonassociated misses a bit of the central point (it doesn't matter what the final capabilities are, what matters is how much the initial fiend helps or hinders those capabilities: basically, levels are treated as nonassociated so a character can "catch up" to a level that goes with its CR), I agree with your conclusion, so let's get to building!

    Your goal is CR 20, which means with associated levels we're looking at something up to CR 10 for the base fiend. Outsiders get all good saves, so you don't need to worry about the base save requirements, you'll have them covered. In terms of skills, you'll probably have enough skill points if your Int isn't too low. Without Knowlege(religion) and Spellcraft in-class you need 13 RHD, while if you have those two it lowers to 9 if you're lacking Bluff, or 7 if you're lacking arcana or the planes.

    I'll focus on demons, though I'll also mention other cool dudes as they arise.

    Succubus is an interesting option, though the lack of Spellcraft means you'd need a few levels in something with it as a class skill. If you're going theurge though that could be a good choice, and Succubi do have lots of Cha for fueling DMM.

    Vrocks have both all Knowledges and Spellcraft, as well as enough HD that you can buy Bluff cross-class. They're one point of CR under the limit, so you've got room for one more level of something else. Fairly good though not stellar mental ability scores, and some nice SLAs.

    Palrethees (MM2) get the right skills and the right attitude, but their mental ability scores aren't stellar and their SLAs are just sad.

    Zovvuts (MM2) would need to dip to get the Knowledge, but you do have a level to spare for that, if only one, which might make points tight. Decent mentals, decent SLAs, and a create spawn ability.

    Maurezhi (FF) are kind of interesting due to shapeshifting abilities, but you need to get enough ranks in Knowledges and Spellcraft from a one level dip, which might not be fun, especially with a racial Int penalty. Plus, low HD. (Note CR of these guys was waay downgraded in FCI, so might be a better choice actually).

    Arrow Demon (MM3) might be fun for a Zen Archery character, but you'd need to dip for the skills. Got a few levels in which to do it though.

    Nycaloths (MM3) are yugoloths, not demons...but they do get almost all the right skills and have enough HD (14) to buy the rest cross-class. They come in right at CR 10, with ok but not great mental scores and mostly mediocre SLAs (though at least greater teleport at-will).

    Mezzoloths (MM3) are wimpier on that front, but you have more levels to play with in between if you want.

    Adaru (MM5) makes for a good leader-demon, had the HD and Int to buy relevant skills cross-class, and is a goddamn giant centipede. Not too many SLAs, but gets the job done.

    I really like the idea of using a Bar-lgura (FCI), but purely for the gorilla-grodd image. They've got some fun SLAs, but aren't really an amazing choice, and take a lot of levels to get to where you want them.

    A Dybbuk (FCI) is sort of a weird choice, and takes a dip to get the right skills, but if you want an incorporeal guy who possesses corpses this does it for you.

    Ekolid (FCI) would be a very different choice. Low CR, so room for enough dips to get the right skills. You're a bug from before the dawn of man who spreads madness in your wake.

    Yochol (FCI) would be almost ideal, but the idea of one rejecting Lolth is pretty much impossible.
    Last edited by Urpriest; 2012-11-20 at 01:53 PM.
    Lord Raziere herd I like Blasphemy, so Urpriest Exalted as a Malefactor

    Meet My Monstrous Guide to Monsters. Everything you absolutely need to know about Monsters and never thought you needed to ask.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mithril Leaf View Post
    One of the unwritten rules of Giantitp is that Urpriest is always right.
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  9. - Top - End - #9
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Chimera

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    Default Re: need some help with an ur-priest villain

    The key abuse of ur-priest is that it lets an npc access 9th lv spells way earlier than one normally would expect to face. An ex-cleric5/ur-priest9 would have 9th lv spells at cr14, a normal cleric needs to be lv17/cr17 for the same thing.

    If you want a fiend with spellcasting lvs, you can consider reskinning an advanced planetar or solar and make him a fallen angel. Change some of their stats to make them more suitable for an evil-aligned character and you are more or less good to go.

    Alternatively, use an astral deva as a base, add ur-priest lvs and treat them as non-associated?
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