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  1. - Top - End - #121
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    ElfPirate

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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    That does sound way cooler as a bamboo plant monster, especially if the sound effect is caused by wind blowing through the bamboo.

    Speaking of the song ability, does it have unlimited uses? If so, I could see some (cheesy) uses with Divine Metamagic or more likely Ruby Knight Vindicator (unlimited swift actions and maneuvers!), or somesuch. Even so, without some cheese it's still -0.

  2. - Top - End - #122
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Quote Originally Posted by No brains View Post
    There are some humanoids that have no heads, like hitmonlee and those old-timey drawings of guys without a neck.
    Never fear a vorpal weapon again!


    Saying that someone reading RAW differently than you is "home brewing or house ruling, but that's fine" doesn't make you right, it just makes you seem pompous.

  3. - Top - End - #123
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Quote Originally Posted by Thurbane View Post
    Never fear a vorpal weapon again!

    Yup! Those are the ones! If Jorge Luis Borges can give us Perytons, we can get these dudes, but they whistle.
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    This thread, Questions that can't be answered... Answered by RAW by No brains, is Epic.
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  4. - Top - End - #124
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    In a fantasy zombie apocalypse game, possibly even better them +0.

    Anywhere else, -0.

  5. - Top - End - #125
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    The rebuke undead is very interesting. I think its effectively unlimited rebuke attempts? Which makes it very interesting. In light of that I think -0 if it works RAI, cause its bad, or its +0* if its unlimited rebuking. Infinite persist/rkv swifts/undead minions warrents a * imo.

  6. - Top - End - #126
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    SamuraiGuy

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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Quote Originally Posted by Efrate View Post
    The rebuke undead is very interesting. I think its effectively unlimited rebuke attempts? Which makes it very interesting. In light of that I think -0 if it works RAI, cause its bad, or its +0* if its unlimited rebuking. Infinite persist/rkv swifts/undead minions warrents a * imo.
    No, you don't get DMM: persist, get DMM: Quicken, and go rvk.
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  7. - Top - End - #127
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Quote Originally Posted by Zaq View Post
    Hmm. Also interesting is this complete sentence in Dronesong's description: "This ability functions as a rebuke undead attempt from an evil cleric of a level equal to the susurrus's Hit Dice." Full stop. It then specifies that undead who would be rebuked or commanded by this rebuke attempt follow new rules, but it doesn't say anything to the effect of "this ability is like a rebuke undead attempt" or "this ability functions similarly to a rebuke undead attempt." It straight up is a rebuke undead attempt that just doesn't actually rebuke undead.

    I'm sure you can all see where this is going by now. That means that a susurrus could potentially use other abilities that key off of rebuke undead. 8 RHD is still too many for that to be the peg on which we hang our rating hats, but still, that makes it slightly closer to being usable, don't you think?
    Can it use Divine Metamagic and similar things at-will? That sounds incredibly potent. I'm not sure if it's "four spell levels behind" potent, but being able to apply every metamagic feat you know to every spell you cast* is sure something.
    I've never played top-level casters for any meaningful length of time, but my intuition tells me that a well-played susurrus with heavily-metamagicked fifth-level divine spells could find ways to contribute to a 20th-level party; if nothing else, it could be one heck of a buffbot.

    *Except Quicken Spell, since you only get one quickened spell per round. And would probably run out of spell slots pretty quickly if you cast one quickened spell and one non-quickened spell every round.


    Quote Originally Posted by No brains View Post
    There are some humanoids that have no heads, like hitmonlee and those old-timey drawings of guys without a neck.
    I was about to point out that hitmonlee isn't Humanoid-type, it's Fighting-type, but then I realized that most humanoid-shaped Pokemon are Fighting-type. So I guess the two are probably equivalent.


    Quote Originally Posted by Various
    1E Bamboo Susurrus
    Alright, maybe it's dual Fighting/Plant. But its signature moves need to be super-effective against Dark, so...
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Susurrus: easy -0. I really just came here to present my group noun, in case you ever get more in one place than "Solitary or pair": a murmuration of susurrusses.
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    To quote the ability in question:

    Dronesong (Su): A susurrus’s dronesong has no effect on
    living creatures, but it soothes undead into a state of torpor.
    This ability functions as a rebuke undead attempt from an
    evil cleric of a level equal to the susurrus’s Hit Dice. An
    undead so rebuked or commanded is instead put into a state
    similar to the effect of a hold undead spell—it cannot move
    and doesn’t want to. This effect lasts for 10 rounds.
    Personally, I'd argue that this doesn't give the kind of 'rebuke attempts' mentioned in Divine Metamagic and Divine Impetus.
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Hmm... just to make sure, Dronesong doesn't stack with other turning pools, right?
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    There's already a way to get unlimited turn/rebuke attempts, but admittedly it's once/5 rounds. A rebuke every round would be significantly better for fueling feats etc.

    Saying that someone reading RAW differently than you is "home brewing or house ruling, but that's fine" doesn't make you right, it just makes you seem pompous.

  12. - Top - End - #132
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    ElfRangerGuy

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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Hey guys. So after a hiccup or two, I believe the LA -0 thread is taking off.

    What I wonder now is if we can arrange it so we don't do the same work twice over. Best case scenario would be merging the discussions and presentation.

    Basically I'm wondering if I can get you to discuss things past pegging it as -0. And write down the results of those discussions. That way, the -0 thread only has to catch up to HERE. Instead of coming here, and having to redo every future monster too!

    For example for the Susurrus. @Inevitability, thanks for remembering, but I'm not sure I agree with the assessment.

    Guy is large, and has some neat abilities, mostly centered around undead.
    Blindsight, neat as it is, might pose problems for a playable character, and he also strikes me as somewhat dissonant - undead-centered, but no bonus to Wis, so won't work well with cleric for example (who'd want something good to replace the lost cleric levels).
    Also, I'd like argue against the interpretation that it adds to turn/rebuke pools.
    That said, I'd peg him squarely as 4 RHD. IMO 5 RHD, as you suggested goes just a little bit over the top, especially considering they're the bad HD - aberration. I just don't see anything that would justify 5 entire levels.

    That said, I'm open to (and aiming for) discussion.
    Last edited by martixy; 2019-02-27 at 05:56 AM.
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    I would definitely say that an attempt to claim Dronesong gives you infinite rebuke attempts for things like Divine Metamagic is the kind of thing that would get you laughed off the table with most of the groups I play with.

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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Quote Originally Posted by martixy View Post
    @Inevitability, thanks for remembering, but I'm not sure I agree with the assessment.
    Yeah, people ain't gonna agree on this kinda thing. Sucks. All we can do is listen to each argument and make comments like the peanut gallery we are.
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  15. - Top - End - #135
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    While it may be not exactly fit to the thread's theme, but what's may be LA for Io-Rach Goblin and Ogre-blooded Human?
    Io-Rach Goblin (Book of Vile Darkness): Medium size, +4 Str and Con, -4 to all mental abilities
    Ogre-blooded Human (example - Quah-Nomag the Skull-King in the Book of Vile Darkness): not enough "Ogre" to count as even a Half-Ogre, but still got Large size

  16. - Top - End - #136
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Susurrus, unexpectedly, stays at -0 LA.

    Quote Originally Posted by martixy View Post
    Hey guys. So after a hiccup or two, I believe the LA -0 thread is taking off.

    What I wonder now is if we can arrange it so we don't do the same work twice over. Best case scenario would be merging the discussions and presentation.

    Basically I'm wondering if I can get you to discuss things past pegging it as -0. And write down the results of those discussions. That way, the -0 thread only has to catch up to HERE. Instead of coming here, and having to redo every future monster too!

    For example for the Susurrus. @Inevitability, thanks for remembering, but I'm not sure I agree with the assessment.

    Guy is large, and has some neat abilities, mostly centered around undead.
    Blindsight, neat as it is, might pose problems for a playable character, and he also strikes me as somewhat dissonant - undead-centered, but no bonus to Wis, so won't work well with cleric for example (who'd want something good to replace the lost cleric levels).
    Also, I'd like argue against the interpretation that it adds to turn/rebuke pools.
    That said, I'd peg him squarely as 4 RHD. IMO 5 RHD, as you suggested goes just a little bit over the top, especially considering they're the bad HD - aberration. I just don't see anything that would justify 5 entire levels.

    That said, I'm open to (and aiming for) discussion.
    I'll try to give some kind of indication what amount of RHD would be balanced for -0 LA monsters, but this thread is primarily about assigning LA's.

    The susurrus isn't balanced at 4 RHD because at that point, it's basically a better ogre. Improved Grab, Barbed Defense, and the anti-undead abilities may not be much, but getting them tacked on to an ogre chassis makes me very hesitant to consider a 4 RHD susurrus balanced.

    Quote Originally Posted by ShurikVch View Post
    While it may be not exactly fit to the thread's theme, but what's may be LA for Io-Rach Goblin and Ogre-blooded Human?
    Io-Rach Goblin (Book of Vile Darkness): Medium size, +4 Str and Con, -4 to all mental abilities
    Ogre-blooded Human (example - Quah-Nomag the Skull-King in the Book of Vile Darkness): not enough "Ogre" to count as even a Half-Ogre, but still got Large size
    The goblin seems like an even more minmaxed water orc, which is an even more minmaxed orc. Then again, it also loses out on Headlong Rush and presumably darkvision, so let's go with +0 LA in the same sense that lesser aasimar is +0 LA.

    If ogre-blooded human is basically a Large human, then +1 LA it is. If it's a completely bland race whose only trait is 'Large humanoid', then +0 LA should be fine.
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Quote Originally Posted by Inevitability View Post
    Susurrus, unexpectedly, stays at -0 LA.

    I'll try to give some kind of indication what amount of RHD would be balanced for -0 LA monsters, but this thread is primarily about assigning LA's.

    The susurrus isn't balanced at 4 RHD because at that point, it's basically a better ogre. Improved Grab, Barbed Defense, and the anti-undead abilities may not be much, but getting them tacked on to an ogre chassis makes me very hesitant to consider a 4 RHD susurrus balanced.
    Point being, LA is only half the story. And given how many monsters end up LA -0, that just means you're skipping half the monsters. At least for purposes of making them playable, which I'd like to think is the ultimate goal of these threads. IMO you shouldn't get overtly stuck on the thread title.

    On the susurrus:
    Under those conditions, yes, I'd agree with you. Except I'd peg the ogre as LA -0 though, and -1 RHD (ECL3). I'm just kind of unimpressed by the value of beatsticks in 3.5 and the massive penalties to mental stats, I can't reasonably see them as anything else.

    But if we're being consistent, yes, 5 RHD is good.
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Quote Originally Posted by martixy View Post
    On the susurrus:
    Under those conditions, yes, I'd agree with you. Except I'd peg the ogre as LA -0 though, and -1 RHD (ECL3). I'm just kind of unimpressed by the value of beatsticks in 3.5 and the massive penalties to mental stats, I can't reasonably see them as anything else.

    But if we're being consistent, yes, 5 RHD is good.
    I do always find it amusing how often the ogre is used as a benchmark for rating other monsters even though, as I recall, there was quite a lot of debate about that one, and not all of us are satisfied with the result. One would think a more logical measuring stick would be one that everyone agrees with.
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Swamp Strider Swarm


    9 RHD of vermin, only notable for being immune to weapon damage and capable of walking on water. The -0 LA is strong with this one.

    If, for some reason, you're dead set on playing this, I honestly wouldn't go above 3 RHD, with a good argument to be made for 2.
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    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Usual spiel about giving base Intelligence 10 to things without one; Vermin RHD are very bad-only 3/4 BAB with one good save, d8 and 2 + Int skills. Like all potentially Intelligent Vermin, the DM needs to make a ruling on Mind Influencing effects.

    As for the critter itself: net -2 abilities after the free Intelligence, so....yuck. No Natural AC, no alternative movement modes, 2 class skills, and the usual package for Swarms-Diminutive, Distraction, immune to weapon damage. Add to this water walking and wave sense, a bonus feat, the milquetoast Wounding effect, 50 ft ground speed and minor skill bonuses...for 9 RHD. And being a swarm, no body slots, manipulators, chakras(?), and communication ability is, shall we say, impaired.

    Very easy LA -0. I would consider shaving this down to about 3 RHD in terms of combat capabilties, but I would not even know where to begin for a build. Auras, perhaps?

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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Have we has any playable swarms and/or vermin yet?

    Definitely LA -0 from me.
    Last edited by Thurbane; 2019-02-28 at 02:57 PM.

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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Quote Originally Posted by Thurbane View Post
    Have we has any playable swarms and/or vermin yet?
    Bat and spider swarm got +0, because they had just enough goodies (weapon immunity, flight/climb, blindsense/poison) crammed into a low number of RHD that they were playable. Ish. Kind of. Aside from those, none that I can see.
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    Kobold

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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    -0, and I am hesitant to dive into doing HD adjustments on -0 monsters. This is already a large project with plenty of debate with what we're already doing, that is another category of debate entirely - removing HD affects so much. I think that except when it's a case where 1-2 HD balances it we're looking at some serious rebuilding at that point, not just judging.
    Last edited by Lapak; 2019-02-28 at 05:35 PM.

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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    For corner cases I don't mind saying like "yeah it'd be +0 with one or two less RHD" but a full-blown analysis of that kinda stuff is way out of bounds for this thread and would be a major direction change this late in the project's life.
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Fair enough-perhaps ballpark estimates that seem to be within 3 RHD of RAW or less? Maybe 2? More than that and you are changing enough of the critter it might as well be something else entirely, since most of WOTC's creature building seems ad hoc after they pull an RHD number out of a hat. In this case, this thing's chassis is so bad you would have to eject most of its RHD before even considering working around the inherent flaws-I agree that saying 'just chop off two-thirds of the RHD while leaving intact all the stats and abilities that WOTC nominally balanced against, and you might have something to work with' is not all that useful.
    Last edited by ViperMagnum357; 2019-02-28 at 04:14 PM.

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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    -0. Moving on.

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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    This is not the ideal way to get a swarm of bugs as a character.

    -0
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    Thorn


    Fey RHD, with their low HP, poor BAB, and general unimpressiveness, aren't very useful on a martial character. The MM3's developers solved this issue like they solved most: with hit dice bloat.

    That said, the thorn's six RHD do hide a number of interesting features. +2d6 sneak attack, +4/+6 to all martial stats, and Small size actually make for a rather decent rogue-type, and having a pixie's Sleep Arrows doesn't hurt either (why yes I like having on-demand save-or-loses). DR 5/cold iron isn't half bad either.

    Compared to a level 7 rogue, a level 1 thorn rogue has 1d6 less sneak attack, 2 less BAB, less class features (Evasion being the big one), and none of whatever racial features the rogue might have. However, they have DR, superior physical stats (as well as charisma), and the aforementioned sleep arrows. Then again, the rogue could by now easily be two levels into a prestige class.

    Given the excellent arguments both for +0 and -0, and the equal results in a subsequent vote, I think that either rating could fit them, to be honest. Look at the optimization level of your game when deciding whether it's worth playing, otherwise just subtract a hit die.
    Last edited by Inevitability; 2019-03-06 at 09:15 AM.
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    A thorn rogue 1 also has better Will than rogue 7, 3 natural armor, and proficiency with longsword/longbow/shield. It's nothing great but then neither is a half-elf or halfling rogue 7. I'd play this without any coercion, so I'm satisfied with +0.
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    Default Re: The LA-assignment thread: Making monster PCs VI-able

    I'm voting -0 for now, but only just. And I'll listen to arguments for +0.

    I think they are lacking for +0. Losing skills, sneak attack dice, class/race features, and BAB. I think halfling rogue 7 is better than thorn/rogue 1 by a fair bit. They are much tankier, NA and DR 5/almost never, plus nice Con. If you compare to good rogue-friendly prestige classes and whisper gnome or the like, it gets even worse.

    I think it makes +0 with as many as 4 RHD, assuming it keeps +2d6 sneak attack. Lost 1 BAB to rogue, but with physical stats still hit more often. Bit less skill point loss, equal sneak attack, and could likely enter prestige classes the same time as pure rogue. Also sleep arrows and a lot of tankiness. This would be fun with pluses and minuses vs. rogue at 4 RHD.

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