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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Zombie

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    Default Planar Shepard/Shapeshift fix

    So, I've been agonizing over the Planar Shepard's over-powered ability to Wild-shape into and get all the abilities of outsiders (ie free wishes). Here's my fix:

    If a character changes form into a form that grants supernatural or spell-like abilities, add the CR of the form to the character's ECL for the next CR days for the purpose of awarding that character experience.

    For instance, an 18th level Wizard Shapechanges into a Solar (CR 23). For the next 23 days, the Wizard is considered a 41st level character for determining how much experience he is awarded. This means he needs to face a CR 34 to get any experience!

    This would still allow all the crazy tricks of the Planar Shepard or Shapechanging to get free wishes but the character would suffer for it.
    Last edited by barna10; 2012-11-19 at 02:12 PM.

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    Titan in the Playground
     
    Urpriest's Avatar

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    Default Re: Planar Shepard/Shapeshift fix

    You're giving the character an advantage. Gaining less experience but still gaining the same amount of treasure makes them disproportionately powerful for their level.
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    Kazyan's Avatar

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    Default Re: Planar Shepard/Shapeshift fix

    You might be prevented from getting any stronger than "free wishes", but...if you have free wishes, saying "no more levels" is like saying you can't have more money than Apple when playing Monopoly.

  4. - Top - End - #4
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    SolithKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Planar Shepard/Shapeshift fix

    Yeah, that's a terrible fix.

    What exactly do you have a problem with when it comes to planar shepherd/shapechanging? Is it that it's very powerful, or what?


    The easiest fix for any shapechanging anything is you don't allow it to mix with the other abilities the character has.

    A CR 23 Solar is fine. A level 20 wizard is fine. The problem is when it's a CR 23 Solar who is ALSO a level 20 wizard. At that point, **** be crazy.

    So my personal fix for all wildshape/polymorphing/whatever, is that if you're a Solar, you're a MM1 Solar. If the Solar dies, or you turn back into you, you've still got wounds and negative levels and stuff, and those might kill you after you turn back or you might have enough hp/con score/whatever to live through it. But you don't get to cast spells, have buffs (unless someone casts buffs on you AFTER you turn into the Solar), have class abilities, have feats.. the most i'd allow is the character's own mental ability scores, and the character's skill checks.


    Do that, and shapechanging is still a thing, but it's much less of a big deal.



    Free wishes is it's own kettle of fish. Personally I don't care because I like to use the Wish economy in my games anyway. But I realize that for some people being able to mass produce minor magical items or get lots of inherent bonuses to ability scores is a huge massive deal that breaks their game in half. So whatever. Easiest solution to that problem is simply ban free wishes/miracles. You shapechange into an efreeti noble, you don't get to grant people wishes. Doop deep.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    ClericGuy

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    Default Re: Planar Shepard/Shapeshift fix

    This fix seems more confusing than is necessary. Why not just disallow the use of wish as a supernatural/spell-like ability? Granted, you could also go with my solution to all problems like this, which is "Whatever you can do, I'm allowed to do, but with no limit on wealth or number of characters/classes used." Then, if they abuse wish, you abuse it to make all of your enemy spellcasters batman wizards with +5 inherent bonuses to all stats and way more items than they should have for their level, with contingent disjunction on themselves when they die, until they stop abusing it.
    Last edited by Namfuak; 2012-11-19 at 02:34 PM.

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    SolithKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Planar Shepard/Shapeshift fix

    ^ That is also a terrible idea. Not only is it metagaming, it's specifically ******* over the players.

    If you don't want players using something, disallow it in the game or ask them not to. Don't be a metagaming **** about it.

    There's nothing wrong with enemies using tactics that the PCs are using. There IS something wrong if you're using it as a stick to beat up the PCs with to force them to do something in-game. That whole 'contingent disjunction' thing is clearly DM stick from the sky, and utterly pointless. If they are dead, what do they care that the enemy has their minor magical items? If it was Death Throes or something, sure, but the way you're using it there and the way you're phrasing it just leads to crap like the party knocking out everyone they come across and sleight of handing their items because everyone they meet is a suicide bomber apparently. It breaks versimilitude and suspension of disbelief in half, and that's bad DMing.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Zombie

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    Default Re: Planar Shepard/Shapeshift fix

    I only have a problem with the masses of free wishes, and I'm the main problem! I will toot my own horn and say that I am an above average player (and off the scale as a DM, lol); give me anything and I'll find a way to abuse it. I HATE outright disallowing mechanics as that seems cheesy. I'd much rather find a way to make things work.

    Also, it's not just "minor" magic items. Per the spell description, ANY magic item can be created with a wish. There are no limits. I've seen some people saying they limit it to "the 5000 XP limit in the spell description", but that is incorrect. The XP cost is 5000 PLUS the cost of the item. Nothing is off limits when you use Wish as a SLA. You could effectively wish for every magic item in the Epic Level Handbook, I don't consider those minor.

    So, it either comes down to ban the class/ability or adjudicate a fix.

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    SolithKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Planar Shepard/Shapeshift fix

    Well, I like the wish economy fix Frank and K use in the Tomes.

    Limits Wish to minor magic items, and introduces plotanium planar substances that are required for major magic items - and are by extension the currency that replaces gold in all non-minor-item transactions.


    Otherwise, simply remove the magic item creation clause and make magic items hard to purchase with gold. Then the player can spam wishes and get huge piles of filthy lucre, but he can't really increase his power level much.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    ElfWarriorGuy

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    Default Re: Planar Shepard/Shapeshift fix

    Quote Originally Posted by barna10 View Post
    I only have a problem with the masses of free wishes, and I'm the main problem! I will toot my own horn and say that I am an above average player (and off the scale as a DM, lol); give me anything and I'll find a way to abuse it. I HATE outright disallowing mechanics as that seems cheesy. I'd much rather find a way to make things work.

    Also, it's not just "minor" magic items. Per the spell description, ANY magic item can be created with a wish. There are no limits. I've seen some people saying they limit it to "the 5000 XP limit in the spell description", but that is incorrect. The XP cost is 5000 PLUS the cost of the item. Nothing is off limits when you use Wish as a SLA. You could effectively wish for every magic item in the Epic Level Handbook, I don't consider those minor.

    So, it either comes down to ban the class/ability or adjudicate a fix.
    You can control how powerful a wish can be. On top of that you could also use what one DM I had did. He basically put Newton's Third Law on wishes.

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  10. - Top - End - #10
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    SolithKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Planar Shepard/Shapeshift fix

    Yes. The DM has rule 0 - he can 'control' anything.

    That's generally assumed in any discussion about 3.5, and is actually the point of the discussion in this thread - which houserule should be put in place to affect free wishes.

    If you're talking about 'on the fly' managing, that quickly gets into 'GM being a ****' territory, as it's not one houserule but 'guess what the GM thinks is okay and what the GM thinks isn't okay', which doesn't end well for anyone.

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